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									 WILDLIFE ADVENTURES 2007                                          monasteries, walk in some of the most dramatic mountains
                                                                   you‟re ever likely to see, visit „Africa‟s Petra‟, as well as so
       TOUR DOSSIER                                                much more. You really don‟t have any reason not to visit
                                                                   this unique and intriguing destination.

         ETHIOPIA EXPLORER                                         PRE-DEPARTURE INFORMATION:
                                                                   Most clients arrive a few days prior to the official start day.
      (Adventurer Accommodated)                                    This is to give them plenty of time to enjoy all that Addis
                                                                   Ababa has to offer. WildLife Adventures can organise any
                                                                   accommodation or activities you may require if you want to
                                                                   arrive early or stay on in Africa after your tour ends. Please
                                                                   contact us for assistance.
  (12 NTS HOTEL/GUESTHOUSE AND 1 NT                                On Day 1 clients should meet at the Holiday Hotel, Haile
                                                                   G/Selassie Road, Addis Ababa. Tel: (++ 251 1)
                                                                   612081 at 18h00pm for the pre-departure meeting. This
ITINERARY DAYS                                                     will give you all a chance to meet your fellow travellers and
    1  Addis Ababa, city tour. Hotel or Guesthouse                 get to know your guides. The meeting will cover all the
    2  Addis Ababa, visit the church, Merkato. Hotel or            aspects of the trip. Please bring with you to this meeting:
       Guesthouse (B)                                              your passport with relevant visa‟s and evidence of medical
    3  Bahir Dar, visit Blue Nile falls. Hotel or                  and personal insurance. Please also bring the Local
       Guesthouse (BD)                                             Payment. This must be paid to the tour leader prior to
    4  Lake Tana. Hotel or Guesthouse (BD)                         departure and must be paid in Cash. The WildLife
    5  Gondar. Visit church. Hotel or Guesthouse                   Adventures local payment is required to cover a wide variety
       (BD)                                                        of our on-tour expenses, which can include National Park
    6  Simien Mountains. Camping (BD)                              entrance fees, excursions and activities, certain fresh foods,
    7  Gondar. Hotel or Guesthouse (BD)                            vehicle tolls and entrance fees, as well as some
    8  Lilabela. Flight to Lilabela visit church. Hotel or         accommodation costs whilst travelling throughout Africa.
       Guesthouse (BD)                                             The local payment is that portion of the tour cost which
    9  Lilabela. Hotel or Guesthouse (BD)                          must be paid in cash to the WildLife Adventures tour leader
    10 xum. Flight to Axum. Hotel or Guesthouse                    at the pre-departure meeting.
    11 Axum. Hotel or Guesthouse (BD)                              Please note: Due to significant and unexpected rises
    12 Addis Ababa. Flight to Addis Ababa Hotel or                 in the cost of fares with Ethiopian Airlines, a
       Guesthouse (B)                                              surcharge of US$130 per person for all pax departing
    13 Addia Ababa. Excursion to Mount Entoto. Hotel               on KTEE Ethiopian Explorer, will come into effect for
       or Guesthouse (B)                                           2006. This amount will be collected locally by the tour
    14 Addis Ababa, Tour Ends (B)                                  leader, along with the local payment.

* Optional add on to Harar: 3 days. See details below.             If you have any questions regarding arrival prior to the tour
                                                                   or any other questions whatsoever, please contact WildLife
INCLUDED IN THE TOUR PRICE:                                        Adventures. If you are unable to attend the pre-departure
Itinerary as specified. Highlighted text is also included. Fully   meeting, please let WildLife Adventures know at least one
equipped vehicle, private bus, 4x4 vehicle, domestic flights,      week prior to your departure.
services of tour leader, all accommodation, all boat
transfers, entrance fees. Please note that due to limited          Other pre-tour accommodation is also available. Please
facilities, chalet and lodge accommodation may be on a             contact the WildLife Adventures office for assistance. All
sharing basis. B: Breakfast. L: Lunch. D: Dinner (All other        meals whilst in Addis Ababa will be to your own expense.
meals not shown will be to the clients account).
                                                                       Pre Dep. Meeting Point:       Holiday Hotel
                                                                       Address:             Haile G/Selassie Rd, Addis Ababa
NOT INCLUDED IN THE TOUR PRICE:                                        Contact Details:     Tel: (++ 251 1) 612081
International Airfares, travel and medical insurance,                                       Fax: (++ 251 1) 612627
personal spending money, visas, passports, vaccinations,               Pre Dep Meeting:     18h00pm on Day 1
personal taxes (including departure and border taxes) all              Tour Start Time:     Approx. 14h00 on Day 1
optional activities, unscheduled or optional national / game           Tour End Time:       Tour ends on Day 15 after
parks and other activities, gratuities, restaurant meals and           breakfast
drinks, and all other items of a personal nature.                      Tour End point:      Holiday Hotel, Addis Ababa
                                                                       Contact Details:     As above

THE BEST OF ETHIOPIA:                                              DAY 1 – Addis Ababa
‟Behold the vast and mysterious splendor that is Ethiopia!         Arrive and check into your hotel. Later this evening you will
This ancient land is a revelation of breathtaking gorges,          have the chance to meet your tour leader and the other
soaring mountains and lakes full of life. With the discovery       members of your tour. All meals to the clients own expense.
of ancient fossil remains of our very distant ancestors            HOTEL (Holiday Hotel or similar) Haile G/Selassie Rd, Addis
Ethiopia is often referred to as "The Cradle of Man". It is a      Ababa
land of fairytale castle cities and untouched grasslands.          Contact details: same as above
You‟ll visit the magnificent Blue Nile Falls, take a boat trip
on the vast Lake Tana and explore isolated island
ADDIS ABABA                                                       twenty of the islands that are found within the waters. Life
Addis Ababa, the capital of Ethiopia, is a bustling African       on Lake Tana goes on as it has done for centuries, and local
city, dotted with Italian architecture, interesting churches      people traverse the lake on tankwas, boats made from
and friendly inhabitants. It is also a city of immense            papyrus that are capable of holding enormous weights. The
contrasts – the Addis Sheraton, with its „singing fountain‟ is    monasteries themselves are fascinating and unlike any
one of the most luxurious in all of Africa, yet you only need     others outside Ethiopia, often decorated with bright
to travel a few streets away to find yourself among busy          frescoes. Because of their isolation they were used to store
markets, dirt roads and the odd goat or two wandering the         art treasures and religious relics from all over the country.
streets.                                                          Local history says the Ark of the Covenant was kept on one
                                                                  of these islands when the city of Axum was under threat,
DAY 2 – Addis Ababa                                               and the remains of five Emperors - including the renowned
Today we have a guided tour around the city, visiting             Fasilidas - are to be found at Daga Istafanos.
various sites including St George‟s Cathedral, the site of
Emperor Haile Selassie‟s coronation, as well as the Merkato,      DAY 5 – Gondar
East Africa‟s largest market. Breakfast.                          This morning we drive along country roads to the town of
                                                                  Gondar, old capital of Ethiopia. The town is home to the
ST GEORGE’s CATHEDRAL                                             Royal Enclosure, a collection of well preserved castles built
Built in 1896 in the traditional octagonal shape by the           in the seventeenth century, and we spend some time
Emperor Menelik II to commemorate his victory against             exploring and learning about them. Afterwards we head to
Italian forces at Adwa, this small cathedral is dedicated to      Debre Berhan Selassie, thought by many to be the most
the national saint of Ethiopia – the same saint that serves       beautiful church in Ethiopia. Breakfast and dinner.
as the British patron saint.
                                                                  DAY 6 – Simien Mountains
MERKATO                                                           Heading north, we travel to the small village of Debark, on
The Merkato is a vast area, almost the size of a small town       the edge of the Simien Mountains National Park. This area is
itself, which houses Addis‟ principal market. From spices to      characterised by enormous chasms and gorges, and offers
clothes to cattle, as well as souvenirs, the merkato is said to   some of the most dramatic scenery in Africa. We make a
sell almost everything that can be sold. The merkato is           short trek to Sankaber, where we camp for the night.
divided into many separate sections, each concentrating           Breakfast and dinner.
upon a particular type of product. It‟s huge, busy, and loud,
but the merkato is an essential part of Addis Ababa, and is       TREKKING
one of the sights you can‟t afford to miss.                       The Simien Mountains are one of Africa‟s premier trekking
                                                                  destinations, and this tour includes a short trek to the
DAY 3 – Bahir Dar                                                 village of Sankaber, where you will spend the night. The
We fly today to Bahir Dar, a pleasant town situated on the        trek included in this trip is graded B - Moderate and
shores of the impressive Lake Tana, Ethiopia‟s largest lake       consists of two short walks, approximately three hours each
and the source of the Blue Nile. This afternoon we head out       in length – one on the day of your arrival in the mountains,
to the Blue Nile Falls, the second largest in Africa. Breakfast   and one the following morning. You will be transported by
and dinner.                                                       4wd vehicle to the start point of the trek, at around 3,000m,
                                                                  although there will not be too many ascents and descents
BLUE NILE FALLS                                                   while you are actually walking. Although no previous
The famous explorer James Bruce, when he first laid eyes          trekking experience is required for this trip and everyone
on the Blue Nile Falls, described them as „a most                 can walk at his or her own pace, it is recommended that you
magnificent sight, that ages, added to the greatest length of     have a reasonable level of fitness before joining this trip –
human life, would not deface or eradicate from my                 the more physically fit you are, the more easily your body
memory.‟ Flowing from the mighty Lake Tana, the Blue Nile         will adapt to hiking. We also recommend that you bring
Falls were once the second largest in Africa, after Victoria      hiking boots with ankle support as footing can be
Falls in Zimbabwe. However, since the construction of a           treacherous. Please note that this trek must not be used as
hydro-electric dam upstream in 2003, the falls have been          a way of
reduced somewhat, and are quite different to those seen by        getting fit - you must be fit before starting this trip. As
Bruce. The walk to the falls takes you through the village of     well as your tour leader, you will be accompanied by a scout
Tis Isat, then crosses the river using an old and picturesque     (compulsory for all visitors to the National Park), and mule
bridge built by the Portuguese sometime in the seventeenth        handlers will take care of your luggage, leaving you to carry
century, before winding through small homesteads and              only your day pack. Our porters will also take care of all
ending up at a viewpoint over the falls.                          other necessary tasks, such as setting up the
                                                                  communal camp and cooking meals. Most food is fresh and
DAY 4 – Lake Tana                                                 we try to limit tinned or dehydrated food. Our camping
A full day visiting some of the many island monasteries that      accommodation will be in twin share tents Basic equipment
lie on Lake Tana. We travel by boat to visit some of the          such as sleeping mats will be provided, but you will need
more remote monasteries and churches, most of which date          to bring your own sleep-sheet. Sleeping bags can be
back to the thirteenth century and have interesting               hired locally for around US$5. As we are trekking
frescoes. Return to Bahir Dar for the night. Breakfast and        through some of Ethiopia‟s most remote regions, please be
dinner.                                                           prepared for very basic washing/toilet facilities. Our tour
                                                                  leader will carry a comprehensive medical kit throughout the
Lake TANA                                                         duration of the trek.
Lake Tana, one of the fabled sources of the Nile, is one of
Ethiopia‟s greatest natural treasures. With a surface of          DAY 7 – Simien Mountains – Gondar
around 3,600 square kilometres, the lake is also famous for       This morning we trek for a short while in the hope of seeing
the series of ancient monasteries and churches located on         some of the fascinating wildlife that lives in these
mountains. You‟re almost guaranteed to see Gelada                 DAY 2 – Harar
baboons, a striking species that is found nowhere else on         A guided tour of Harar to see the mosques and interesting
earth, and if we‟re lucky we may see Walia Ibex or the            old architecture of the town, including the old city wall and
Simien Fox. Afterwards we return to Gondar for the night.         the house of the French poet Rimbaud. This evening you
breakfast and dinner.                                             may wish to go and see one of the most amazing sights in
                                                                  Ethiopia – the nightly feeding of the hyenas that live in the
DAY 8 – Lalibela                                                  countryside nearby. Breakfast and dinner.
We take a short flight to the isolated town of Lalibela, which
is home to a spectacular collection of ancient churches hewn      DAY 3 – Awash National Park- Addis Ababa
out of the surrounding rock, so astounding that local legend      Awash National park is one of the most beautiful parks in
has it that they are the creations of angels. We visit the        Ethiopia. The river Awash runs through a spectacular gorge;
many churches within the town today. Breakfast and dinner.        the park itself is home to 392 species of birds and many
                                                                  mammals including oryx, gazelles and antelopes. The river
DAY 9 – Lalibela                                                  Awash is the longest river in Ethiopia; it does not run into
Heading out into the rugged surrounding countryside, we           the sea, but feeds into the Danakil depression close to
travel along dirt tracks visiting some of the churches that lie   Asayta and terminates in a series of lakes. After visiting the
nearby, all made from the rock and dating back to around          Park we will drive back to Addis Ababa where the tour ends
the eleventh and twelfth centuries. Breakfast and diner           upon arrival. Breakfast included.

DAY 10 – Axum                                                     Please note: While it is our intention to adhere to the route
Today we fly to Axum, the centre of a once great empire           described above, there is a certain amount of flexibility built
that was under the control of the legendary Queen of              into the itinerary and on occasion it may be necessary, or
Sheba. Axum is home to many fascinating tombs and                 desirable to make alterations. On Day 1 of your tour, you
churches and has an unusual collection of stelae dating back      will be advised of any amendments.
to the third and fourth centuries. Breakfast and dinner.

DAY 11 – Axum
Today we have a full day sightseeing in Axum, including a
visit to the Church of St Mary of Zion, which is believed to
contain the Ark of the Covenant. Breakfast and dinner.

DAY 12 – Addis Ababa
We fly back to Addis Ababa where the rest of the day is at
leisure. Breakfast.

DAY 13 – Addis Ababa
Today we make an excursion to Mount Entoto where you
can see the old palace of Menelik II, the St Mary‟s Church,
and a panoramic view of Addis. The rest of the day is at
leisure. Breakfast.

DAY 14 – Addis Ababa
Tour ends after breakfast. Breakfast.

If you would like to extend your stay in Ethiopia, and
visit the Islamic city of Harar, this could be extended
as follows:

DAY 1 – Addis Ababa - Harar
Drive to the walled city of Harar, a once important centre of
Islamic scholarship. For many years the city was closed to
Christians and early explorers were forced to enter in
disguise, at their peril. Dinner included.

Harar, an ancient city surrounded by great walls, has the
most colourful market place in Ethiopia. Harar was for
centuries the main center for Islamic learning and culture in
Ethiopia, and a prosperous centre for the caravan trade.
Harar is the spiritual heart of Ethiopia's large Muslim
community. With almost a hundred mosques in a small city
of less than one square mile (the highest concentration in
the world), Harar is considered by some to be the fourth
holiest Muslim city in the world.
                     INFORMATION                                 Our tour guides are trained not only to run informative, fun
           Central Reservations and Head Office                  and adventurous tours, but also to take control when things
Unit 1, Westlake Business Park, 25 Bell Crescent, Westlake,      don‟t run smoothly.
              7945, Cape Town, South Africa.
  PO Box 30661, Tokai, 7966, Cape Town, South Africa.            Please remember that this is Africa after all, and that the
   Tel: (++ 27) 21 702 0643 Fax: (++ 27) 21 702 0644             itinerary stated has to be flexible and will depend on local
          Email:                  conditions. Travelling in Africa is sometimes unpredictable.
            Web:                    By the very nature of travelling in remote areas there are
                                                                 unforeseen challenges to overcome and passengers should
                                                                 have a taste for adventure. Problems with road conditions,
Dear WildLife Adventures client,                                 weather, mechanical breakdown or accidents can delay and
                                                                 change the schedule of the tour. Please be prepared and
Based on years of experience operating safaris in Africa, we     pack a sense of humor!
have put together a few important points that we hope will
help you to understand the type of safaris we offer. This is a   On every tour that we operate timing and itineraries will
guide to prepare you for your holiday and maximum                vary slightly because of changing conditions. Be prepared
enjoyment.                                                       and expect this.

BOOKING TERMS AND CONDITIONS WITH WILDLIFE                       In the event of any incidence that may affect safety,
ADVENTURES                                                       security, and the well being of the tour participants, the
All clients are responsible for reading and understanding this   decision of the tour guide will be final.
pre departure information, and also reading and signing the
standard booking terms and conditions. Your participation in     ROUTES & ITINERARY:
this tour is based on these terms and conditions.                WildLife Adventures operates multi country tours. On some
                                                                 tours our total distance covered is over five thousand
ADVENTURE SAFARIS AND TOURS:                                     kilometers and we visit 4 different countries! You need to be
Adventure Safaris are for people whom love life and want to      prepared therefore for long drives on certain days. Although
embrace it with passion, who want to travel with other           our vehicles are well maintained and serviced regularly, the
people and care about wildlife and culture. A positive           challenging African roads may sometimes cause temporary
approach and flexibility are essential. Remember you are         breakdowns. Do not panic and please be patient if this
travelling in Africa. The nature of this tour will be            should arise. WildLife Adventures are well represented with
adventurous – hopefully that is the reason you have booked       good support throughout Southern and East Africa. Should a
in the first place.                                              mechanical breakdown or incident occur, good back-up
                                                                 systems are in place, and there is no need for concern. Your
PARTICIPATION:                                                   driver has been trained and will need to do on tour
This tour does not call for any participation. Our crew may      maintenance to his or her vehicle as part of their
occasionally ask you for assistance, but porterage of 2 bags     responsibilities.
per client is included. It is vital that travellers have a
positive attitude towards participation and joining in is what   There will be sand and dust and hot African sun, but there
turns a great trip into an unforgettable journey.                will also be some gorgeous evenings spent around the
                                                                 campfires under the starry skies, some beautiful
FOOD                                                             countryside, and some extraordinary tales about nature,
Where your guides are scheduled to prepare food, they will       exquisite photographic opportunities, and memories for a
make every effort to prepare nutritious and filling meals. If    lifetime!
you have any problems with the food please discuss this
directly with them. In Africa especially in the more remote      We make every effort to follow the intended route of the
areas, availability of foods and fresh products are often        itinerary in our brochure, however changes sometimes need
limited. This may result in the duplication of ingredients and   to be made due to unforeseen circumstances beyond our
meals.                                                           control. This may result in missed areas and activities,
                                                                 diversions, and variations on night stops. Occasional
Discuss your specific food requirements especially in the        operational uncertainties make it impossible to run
case of dietary limitations with your crew. They will            adventure trips exactly to the intended itinerary, so when
wherever possible accommodate your needs.                        booking a trip you must accept that itineraries may differ
                                                                 from that published
You will be expected to purchase all of your own drinks.         The company will not be responsible for accommodation
Beer, cool drinks, bottled water, local wine and spirits, etc    costs, or liable for any airfares or any other compensation to
are usually readily available at reasonable prices. Bottled      the client.
water is normally available in most large towns. Discuss this
in detail with your guide, as this could affect your health.     GUIDES:
                                                                 Our guides are there to make sure that you have an
Beware of dehydration and drink plenty of water. You will        unforgettable trip. If there is anything that is upsetting you
probably not be accustomed to African conditions and this        whilst on tour, you need to approach the guide to give him a
can affect you severely.                                         fair opportunity to rectify the problem. Dealing with any
                                                                 problems that may arise whilst on tour, will prevent them
                                                                 from developing into something more problematic. The
                                                                 guide cannot help you if you remain quiet. It will be difficult
                                                                 for WildLife Adventures to address any complaint after a
tour if you have not discussed this issue with your guide. If     on tour could change from that stated in this dossier or in
a serious matter arises on tour that you feel needs to be         our brochures.
brought to our head offices attention then the contact
details are on this information sheet. Please feel free to        Hotels, lodges or chalets where used will be simple, clean
contact us by mail or by phone in the unlikely event of a         basic travellers accommodation. In some cases ablution
serious matter arising that your tour leader cannot deal          facilities may be on a sharing basis.
                                                                  WITH REGARDS TO YOUR SAFTEY AND WELL BEING:
Our guides are trained extensively, but please also               Please take care in the vehicle whilst travelling - do not
remember that the nature of an adventure safari is to give a      move about unnecessarily for if the vehicle has to stop
very broad range of experiences. Your guide cannot be             suddenly you may fall. You must be seated and remain
expected to be an expert on everything throughout many            seated if the vehicle is moving. Take care when standing
different countries! This is why we also contract the services    that you do not bang your head!
of local guides and experts to compliment the information
that our guides can give you. There will also be occasions        Do not carry all money or valuables on your person – use
where your camp courier will need to sit in the cab with the      the safe on the vehicle for money and passports. This safe is
tour driver to do planning for meals and other aspects of the     in the vehicle for your convenience.
tour. If you feel that you are not getting enough information     WildLife Adventures provides this safe in good faith, but
please speak with your tour leader and we will rectify the        cannot be held responsible for any losses or damages
                                                                  Do not leave any valuables lying around. Your possessions
Your guide will brief you on the nature of the tour and what      are YOUR responsibility!
to expect in the pre departure meeting. Thereafter he will
have meetings with the group on a regular basis most              Beware of pickpockets and it a good idea to walk in groups
usually every evening to explain the next day‟s options,          particularly at night and in African towns, markets etc.
programs and activities. It is essential that if you are          Check with your guide if you are in doubt.
unhappy about any issues on the tour that you express your
feelings to the guide. This should be done privately if it is a   Do not buy anything out of the vehicle windows – ask your
sensitive matter. Think of group dynamics and how                 crew to explain but when street vendors swamp the vehicle
important they are to successful tours. Please don‟t wait         things sometimes get stolen!
until the end of the tour to raise any complaints if they
arise. It is your responsibility to make the guides aware of      Do not change any money on the black market. If you do so
issues that need attention so that they can address any           it is at your own risk!
problems or make changes where necessary.
                                                                  Last person out of the vehicle please switch of all lights and
TIPPING                                                           shut the door! Please keep all doors closed and locked at all
Tipping is obviously entirely at your discretion, and based       times. Your possessions are at risk.
on how you feel the service has been. Our guides do go to
great lengths to provide you with an experience of a              The truck buzzer should be used with discretion. Please
lifetime. They often go that extra mile to make that special      remember that the driver can only stop when it is safe to do
moment. Remember also that it is hours of behind the              so. Do not therefore expect an immediate stop for toilet or
scenes work that you may not be aware of that will make           photographs after using the buzzer.
your tour really special. Please consider all of this when you
decide on your tip. Guiding is a 24-hour job that requires        HEALTH AND FIRST AID
dedicated effort.                                                 Any one participating in an adventure safari must be in good
                                                                  health. Please see our terms and conditions for further
An indication of what is generally accepted and paid to the       information on this. Please note that WildLife
guides is:                                                        Adventures is not qualified to give you medical advice
                                                                  and you must contact your own doctor for
- Driver/guides /couriers: USD 3 to 4 per day per client; - -     information.
Trainees USD 1 per day
- National Parks Guides / optional activities: USD 1 to 2         Recommended vaccinations and other health protection vary
per person                                                        from country to country. We recommend that you contact
- Bar staff/waiters: 10% of bill if service is excellent          your doctor and gain the correct medical advice about
Your guides will ask you to complete details onto a               All clients MUST have full medical and travel insurance cover
passenger manifesto with all tour participants‟ passport          before joining the tour. See booking terms and conditions
details. This will be used for getting the group through          for further information.
borders smoothly and most importantly will reduce the
amount of time we spend at border crossings.                      There is an emergency first aid kit on board every vehicle.
                                                                  This kit is for emergencies or serious medical conditions
ACCOMMODATION AND FACILITIES:                                     only. If items are used, clients will be asked to pay for
The facilities in some of the areas that you will be visiting     them. Clients are advised to bring a simple personal first aid
are sometimes basic. PLEASE COME PREPARED! Participants           kit, and details are supplied below.
are usually very quick to adapt themselves to the conditions
of the safari. It‟s all part of the adventure!                    It must be understood that your crew are not able to
Whilst we have been specific about which lodges or hotels         administer any drugs. It is the client‟s responsibility to
we may use whilst on tour, please note that accommodation         administer medication to him or herself, unless
incapacitated, in which case that individuals travelling           CONNECTING TRIPS AND SAFARIS IN AFRICA
partner will administer medication.                                WildLife Adventures operates safaris, trips and expeditions
                                                                   all over Africa. Many of our trips are scheduled so that you
Your major health risk is Malaria– so take your prophylactics      can connect with other departing adventures.
on time. The best way of avoiding malaria is to not get
bitten in the first place! Cover up at night and keep your         Please contact us for full details.
tents closed at all times.                                         Web:
Bilharzia is present in Africa. It is not an immediate life
threatening disease! Simply have a test when you get back          SPECIAL REQUIREMENTS
home and the treatment is simple and effective. Do not let it      Any client with any special requirements, dietary or
spoil your swimming!                                               otherwise, should notify our Head Office in writing at least
                                                                   one week prior to departure. We will do our very best to
All water on the truck is clean and drinkable. Beware of any       accommodate you.
other water in Africa as it can make you sick!
Good personal hygiene is essential! Wash hands as often as         Please bring your own film, as sources can be expensive and
you can, and always before eating - but remember water is          unreliable in Africa. Please remember that taking photos of
precious in Africa.                                                people can sometimes cause great offence and permission
                                                                   should be asked beforehand. In addition to this some
Inform your crew about any medical problems or allergies.          African governments do not allow photos to be taken at any
This is essential and will be treated confidentially. Be sure to   government, police or army post, borders, bridges or
inform them if any medical conditions get serious. There are       military roadblocks. If in doubt ask your guide.
not always hospitals or doctors everywhere along the route.
                                                                   A TYPICAL DAY
RUBBISH                                                            Generally clients will wake at 7:00 am on a traveling day
All litter including cigarette buts must be thrown into            and depart at approx 8:00 am after breakfast. Some days
dustbins provided. Not even fruit peals or pips may be             where the travelling distance is greater, an earlier rise is to
thrown anyplace other than the dustbin.                            be expected. Where meals are included they are supplied at
                                                                   a stopover decided by your guides and we generally get to
LOCAL LAWS AND CUSTOMS                                             our hotel or camp in the late afternoon. Free days are at
We are guests in each country we visit and it is only good         your leisure.
manners that we comply with their customs. All participants
are required to obey the law and regulation of the countries       VEHICLES
visited and any passengers contravening such laws may be           Your comfort and safety is our number one priority.
required to leave the tour immediately with no right to            Transportation for this tour will be on a private bus.
refund of the tour fare.
                                                                   ROOMING ARRANGEMENTS
VISITING OF AFRICAN VILLAGES                                       Do not be concerned about coming alone, many of our
As a form of respect and general courtesy towards local            clients do. You will however be required to pay a single
inhabitants and village dwellers, we do not encourage the          supplement on the tour price.
complete invasion of their privacy and homes by tourists.
There are certain villages that allow tourist visits at a          INSURANCE
minimal fee. Many tourists are happy to pay for this small         COMPREHENSIVE             TRAVEL       INSURANCE           IS
charge for the opportunity of seeing the way in which local        COMPULSORY FOR ALL PASSENGERS! All travellers are
inhabitants live. If in doubt ask your WildLife Adventures         required to take insurance to cover cancellation and
guide for advice.                                                  curtailment, baggage loss or damage, medical expenses,
                                                                   emergency travel, repatriation and personal accident before
CONSERVATION                                                       leaving their country.       It is the passenger‟s sole
Most countries are members of CITES (Convention of                 responsibility to ensure that they are fully insured. This is
International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna            also part of our booking terms and conditions, so you will
and Flora). Please do NOT purchase products made from              mot be accommodated on any tour without adequate
ivory and skins. These may be confiscated by customs.              insurance. Guides will check your insurance policy at the pre
Please be aware that the purchase of any wooden carvings           departure meeting, and if you are not insured you will not
places a strain on forest resources, and the removal of coral      be allowed to join the tour.
and shells is destructive to the reefs.
                                                                   Most travel insurance policies have a restriction on
ECOTOURISM                                                         compensation for loss, damage or theft of single valuable
The ultimate objective of eco-tourism is for clients to have a     items (e.g. cameras). Please check your policy carefully
pleasant and enriching experience of nature, and at the            and if necessary insure valuable items separately, (e.g.
same time, cause the least possible disturbance to                 under a home contents policy with a travel extension).
ecosystems. Your guides have strict environmental policies         Please take your insurance policy with you on safari. Please
to adhere to, which we endeavour to instil in all of our           also note that travel insurance provided with credit card
passengers. Respect for local people, fellow travellers and        payment is usually inadequate for travel of this nature.
the places we visit are expected. Consider the environment
at all times and be considerate in your approach to your           INDEMNITY
holiday.                                                           Passengers will be required to complete and sign an
                                                                   Indemnity Form prior to joining any adventure safari. Again
                                                                   these form part of our booking terms and conditions. If you
do not sign the        indemnity    form   you   will   not   be   HINT: Please take your toiletries and a change of clothing
accommodated.                                                      with you on board the plane in case bags get miss- placed.

VISAS AND PASSPORTS                                                A CHECK LIST OF SUGGESTED ITEMS FOLLOWS
All travelers will require a full valid passport, and it is your   BELOW:
responsibility to ensure that you have valid visas for all         Some nights can be very cold in winter, so bring along some
countries visited on your holiday, and / or sufficient blank       warm clothing.
pages for any visas and for entry/departure stamps. Your
passport must be valid for at least six months after the end       1 day pack, to contain money, travel documents, water and
of your holiday. If you have more then one passport, we            camera equipment, etc. This will be allowed inside the safari
recommend that you use one passport only for the entire            vehicle.
journey. This will save problems and potential delays at
border crossings. Requirements differ depending on your            1 waist pouch or money belt.
nationality - check with the appropriate embassies for
details.                                                           CLOTHING & PERSONAL EFFECTS (PLEASE TAKE THE
It is your responsibility to ensure that you are in possession     Most people make the mistake of taking along too much
of the correct visas for your holiday and onward travel.           clothing. Take along comfortable, casual and semi-casual,
WildLife Adventures cannot accept responsibility for anyone        “wash & wear” clothes. There will be opportunities to wash
who is refused entry to a country because they lack the            clothing OR have it washed along the way. Bright colours
correct    documentation.      Please    check    the   actual     and white are not suitable for game viewing. Please also
requirements with the necessary embassy.                           avoid clothing resembling army uniform (i.e. army jackets,
                                                                   caps, and trousers). Please dress appropriately when:
Please also do not assume that any inaccuracies within your        crossing borders (no bare feet, bare chests, no bikini tops,
documentation will be detected or can be rectified - you           no sunglasses or hats), when visiting markets, villages, and
must ensure, that your "paper-work" is in order. There will        towns and when travelling in the vehicle.
be times during the trip, when your passport will be
collected e.g. by your tour leader, hotel reception staff, or      This list below is purely a guideline:
police.                                                            1 pair of smart/casual trousers
                                                                   3 pairs of shorts
OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES                                                7 shirts/T-shirts (any combination)
All of our trips are designed so that you can choose               1 light cotton dress for the ladies
according to your own particular budget, which excursions          2 fleece / jersey for the cool evenings
you wish to partake in. Any activity marked „optional‟ will be     1 wind-breaker / water proof jacket
to the client‟s expense. Your WildLife Adventures guides are       1 warm jacket
able to assist with information of all the options on offer.       1 pair of walking/running shoes
WildLife Adventures can book these excursions as an extra          1 pair of sandals/ reef shoes (useful for showers)
service to our clients.                                            Underwear and socks
                                                                   1 swimming costume
Remember these optional extras are operated by third party         1 sun hat
local companies and not by WildLife Adventures. Some               1 towel
activities are adventurous with accompanying risk. All             1 litre water bottle (essential)
activities are undertaken at your own risk, and WildLife           1 torch with batteries (essential)
Adventures will not be held responsible in any way.                Toilet paper
                                                                   Bath soap
EXTRA EXPENSES                                                     Toothbrush/toothpaste
Sometimes political or civil unrest and other circumstances        Shampoo & hair conditioner
beyond the control of WildLife Adventures will mean the            Deodorant
group having to make alternative travel plans. We                  Comb/hair brush
recommend that you bring emergency funds or have access            Razor & blades (preferable battery operated shaver)
to funds that you do not intend to use. Most insurance             Suntan lotion/sun block
policies refund only after you have paid out.                      Lip balm
                                                                   Hand cream & moisturizing cream
LUGGAGE AND OTHER ITEMS                                            Insect repellent
Space in the vehicle is limited and we request that you pay        Tissues or disposable moist tissues (e.g. Wet Ones)
particular attention to the following guidelines.                  Washing powder
We suggest your luggage is restricted to 15 kilograms (so          Plastic bags (to pack wet/dirty clothing)
you can comfortably carry it).                                     Sunglasses
We recommend that you utilize old or inexpensive luggage.          Spectacles (if worn) – some people have trouble with
Suitcases are NOT suitable. You may use a small/ medium            contact lenses & dust
sized rucksack, provided that it has no frame.                     Pen for immigration formalities
INSIDE THE VEHICLE. EXCESS LUGGAGE WILL BE STORED                  We suggest that you take along the following: -
AND ANY COSTS INCURRED WILL BE THE PASSENGERS                      Plasters/band aids
RESPONSIBILITY.                                                    Aspirins/paracetamol
Anti-diarrhoea pills (consult your pharmacist for advice)
Throat lozenges
Antiseptic cream
Insect repellent
Anti-malaria tablets (refer to the MALARIA section)
Insect repellent (Jungle Formula)
Fungal infection powder
Rehydration powder
Eye drops
Any other medicines & toiletries you regularly use (e.g.
tampons or condoms)

There are full banking facilities available in the major towns
and cities where one is able to change money and withdraw
cash from your credit card. Your tour guide will advise
further at the pre-departure meeting.

You should budget at least the equivalent of 300 – 500 US$,
to cover optional activities you might like to try, as well as
your drinks and the restaurant meals, crafts and souvenirs.


                                                                   fortune for various nobles, including Ras Ali, a Christian of
                                                                   Oromo origin who dominated the court in Gonder. Kasa
                     A BRIEF HISTORY                               became sufficiently effective as an army commander to be
                        ETHIOPIA                                   offered the governorship of a minor province. He also
                                                                   married Ali's daughter, Tawabech. Nevertheless, Kasa
THE RE-ESTABLISHMENT OF AN ETHIOPIA MONARCHY                       eventually rebelled against Ali, occupied Gonder in 1847,
At the beginning of the nineteenth century, the Gonder             and compelled Ali to recognize him as chief of the western
state consisted of the northern and central highlands and          frontier area. In 1848 he attacked the Egyptians in Sudan;
the lower elevations immediately adjacent to them. This            however, he suffered a crushing defeat, which taught him to
area was only nominally a monarchy, as rival nobles fought         respect modern firepower. Kasa then agreed to
for the military title of ras (roughly, marshal; literally, head   reconciliation with Ali, whom he served until 1852, when he
in Amharic) or the highest of all non-royal titles,                again revolted. The following year, he defeated Ali's army
rasbitwoded, that combined supreme military command with           and burned his capital, Debre Tabor. In 1854 he assumed
the duties of first minister at court. These nobles often were     the title negus (king), and in February 1855 the head of the
able to enthrone and depose princes who carried the empty          church crowned him Tewodros II.
title of negusa nagast.
                                                                   Tewodros II's origins were in the Era of the Princes, but his
The major peoples who made up the Ethiopian state were             ambitions were not those of the regional nobility. He sought
the Amhara and the Tigray, both Semitic speakers, and              to re-establish a cohesive Ethiopian state and to reform its
Cushitic speaking peoples such as the Oromo and those              administration and church. He did not initially claim
groups speaking Agew languages, many of whom were                  Solomonic lineage but did seek to restore Solomonic
Christian by the early 1800s. In some cases, their                 hegemony, and he considered himself the "Elect of God."
conversion had been accompanied by their assimilation into         Later in his reign, suspecting that foreigners considered him
Amhara culture or, less often, Tigray culture; in other cases,     an upstart and seeking to legitimise his reign, he added
they had become Christian but had retained their                   "son of David and Solomon" to his title.
languages. The state's largest ethnic group was the Oromo,
but the Oromo were neither politically nor culturally unified.     Tewodros's first task was to bring Shewa under his control.
Some were Christian, spoke Amharic, and had intermarried           During the Era of the Princes, Shewa was, even more than
with the Amhara. Other Christian Oromo retained their              most provinces, an independent entity, and its ruler even
language, although their modes of life and social structure        styling himself negus. In the course of subduing the
had changed extensively from those of their pastoral kin. At       Shewans, Tewodros imprisoned a Shewan prince, Menelik,
the eastern edge of the highlands, many had converted to           who would later become emperor himself. Despite his
Islam, especially in the area of the former sultanates of Ifat     success against Shewa, Tewodros faced constant rebellions
and Adal. The Oromo people, whether or not Christian and           in other provinces. In the first six years of his reign, the new
Amhara in culture, played important political roles in the         ruler managed to put down these rebellions, and the empire
Zemene Mesafint--often as allies of Amhara aspirants to            was relatively peaceful from about 1861 to 1863, but the
power but sometimes as rases and kingmakers in their own           energy, wealth, and manpower necessary to deal with
right.                                                             regional opposition limited the scope of Tewodros's other
                                                                   activities. By 1865 other rebels had emerged, including
Meanwhile, to the south of the kingdom, segments of the            Menelik, who had escaped from prison and returned to
Oromo population--cultivators and suppliers of goods               Shewa, where he declared himself negus.
exportable to the Red Sea coast and beyond--had developed
kingdoms of their own, no doubt stimulated in part by the          In addition to his conflicts with rebels and rivals, Tewodros
examples of the Amhara to the north and the Sidama                 encountered difficulties with the European powers. Seeking
kingdoms to the south.                                             aid from the British government (he proposed a joint
                                                                   expedition to conquer Jerusalem), he became unhappy with
The seventeenth through nineteenth century was a period            the behaviour of those Britons whom he had counted on to
not only of migration but also of integration, as groups           advance his request, and he took them hostage. In 1868, as
borrowed usable techniques and institutions from each              a British expeditionary force sent from India to secure
other. In the south, too, Islam had made substantial               release of the hostages stormed his stronghold, Tewodros
inroads. Many Oromo chieftains found Islam a useful tool in        committed suicide.
the process of centralization as well as in the building of
trade networks.                                                    Tewodros never realized his dream of restoring a strong
                                                                   monarchy, although he took some important initial steps.
By the second quarter of the nineteenth century, external          He sought to establish the principle that governors and
factors once more affected the highlands and adjacent              judges must be salaried appointees. He also established a
areas, at least in part because trade among the Red Sea            professional standing army, rather than depending on local
states was being revived. Egypt made incursions along the          lords to provide soldiers for his expeditions. He also
coast and sought at various times to control the Red Sea           intended to reform the church, believing the clergy to be
ports. Europeans, chiefly British and French, showed               ignorant and immoral, but strong opposition confronted him
interest in the Horn of Africa. The competition for trade,         when he tried to impose a tax on church lands to help
differences over how to respond to Egypt's activities, and         finance government activities. His confiscation of these
the readier availability of modern arms were important             lands gained him enemies in the church and little support
factors in the conflicts of the period.                            elsewhere. Essentially, Tewodros was a talented military
                                                                   campaigner but a poor politician.
In the mid-nineteenth century, a major figure in Gonder was
Kasa Haylu, son of a lesser noble from Qwara, a district on        The kingdom at Tewodros's death was disorganized, but
the border with Sudan. Beginning about 1840, Kasa                  those contending to succeed him were not prepared to
alternated between life as a brigand and life as a soldier of      return to the Zemene Mesafint system. One of them,
crowned Tekla Giorgis, took over the central part of the      Battle of Metema on the Sudanese border. Although the
highlands. Another, Kasa Mercha, governor of Tigray,          invaders were defeated, Yohannis himself was fatally
declined when offered the title of ras in exchange for        wounded, and the Ethiopian forces disintegrated. Just before
recognizing Tekla Giorgis. The third, Menelik of Shewa,       his death, Yohannis designated one of his sons, Ras
came to terms with Tekla Giorgis in return for a promise to   Mengesha Yohannis of Tigray, as his successor, but this
respect Shewa's independence. Tekla Giorgis, however,         gesture proved futile, as Menelik successfully claimed the
sought to bring Kasa Mercha under his rule but was            throne in 1889.
defeated by a small Tigrayan army equipped with more
modern weapons than those possessed by his Gonder             The Shewan ruler became the dominant personality in
forces. In 1872 Kasa Mercha was crowned negusa nagast in      Ethiopia and was recognized as Emperor Menelik II by all
a ceremony at the ancient capital of Aksum, taking the        but Yohannis's son and Ras Alula. During the temporary
throne name of Yohannis IV.                                   period of confusion following Yohannis's death, the Italians
                                                              were able to advance farther into the hinterland from
Yohannis was unable to exercise control over the nearly       Mitsiwa and establish a foothold in the highlands, from
independent Shewans until six years later. From the           which Menelik was unable to dislodge them. From 1889 until
beginning of his reign, he was confronted with the growing    after World War II, Ethiopia was deprived of its maritime
power of Menelik, who had proclaimed himself king of          frontier and was forced to accept the presence of an
Shewa and traced his Solomonic lineage to Lebna Dengel.       ambitious European power on its borders.
While Yohannis was struggling against opposing factions in    By 1900 Menelik had succeeded in establishing control over
the north, Menelik consolidated his power in Shewa and        much of present-day Ethiopia and had, in part at least,
extended his rule over the Oromo to the south and west. He    gained recognition from the European colonial powers of the
garrisoned Shewan forces among the Oromo and received         boundaries of his empire. Although in many respects a
military and financial support from them. Despite the         traditionalist, he introduced several significant changes. His
acquisition of European firearms, in 1878 Menelik was         decision in the late 1880s to locate the royal encampment at
compelled to submit to Yohannis and to pay tribute; in        Addis Ababa ("New Flower") in southern Shewa led to the
return, Yohannis recognized Menelik as negus and gave him     gradual rise of a genuine urban center and a permanent
a free hand in territories to the south of Shewa. This        capital in the 1890s, a development that facilitated the
agreement, although only a truce in the long-standing         introduction of new ideas and technology. The capital's
rivalry between Tigray and Shewa, was important to            location symbolized the empire's southern reorientation, a
Yohannis, who was preoccupied with foreign enemies and        move that further irritated Menelik's Tigrayan opponents
pressures. In many of Yohannis's external struggles,          and some Amhara of the more northerly provinces who
Menelik maintained separate relations with the emperor's      resented Shewan hegemony. Menelik also authorized a
enemies and continued to consolidate Shewan authority in      French company to build a railroad, not completed until
order to strengthen his own position. In a subsequent         1917 that eventually would link Addis Ababa and Djibouti.
agreement designed to ensure the succession in the line of
Yohannis, one of Yohannis's younger sons was married to       Menelik embarked on a program of military conquest that
Zawditu, Menelik's daughter.                                  more than doubled the size of his domain. Enjoying superior
                                                              firepower, his forces overran the Kembata and Welamo
In 1875 Yohannis had to meet attacks from Egyptian forces     regions in the southern highlands. Also subdued were the
on three fronts. The khedive in Egypt envisioned a "Greater   Kefa and other Oromo- and Omotic-speaking peoples.
Egypt" that would encompass Ethiopia. In pursuit of this
goal, an Egyptian force moved inland from present-day         Expanding south, Menelik introduced a system of land rights
Djibouti but was annihilated by Afar tribesmen. Other         considerably modified from that prevailing in the
Egyptian forces occupied Harer, where they remained for       AmharaTigray highlands. These changes had significant
nearly ten years, long after the Egyptian cause had been      implications for the ordinary cultivator in the south and
lost. Tigrayan warriors defeated a more ambitious attack      ultimately were to generate quite different responses there
launched from the coastal city of Mitsiwa in which the        to the land reform programs that would follow the revolution
Egyptian forces were almost completely destroyed. A fourth    of 1974 in the central and northern highlands, despite
Egyptian army was decisively defeated in 1876 southwest of    regional variations, most peasants had substantial
Mitsiwa.                                                      inheritable rights in land. In addition to holding rights of this
                                                              kind, the nobility held or were assigned certain economic
Italy was the next source of danger. The Italian government   rights in the land, called gult rights, which entitled them to a
took over the port of Aseb in 1882 from the Rubattino         portion of the produce of the land in which others held rist
Shipping Company, which had purchased it from a local         rights and to certain services from the rist holders. The
ruler some years before. Italy's main interest was not the    Ethiopian Orthodox Church also held land of its own and gult
port but the eventual colonization of Ethiopia. In the        rights in land to which peasants held rist rights. In the
process, the Italians entered into a long-term relationship   south, all land theoretically belonged to the emperor. He in
with Menelik. The main Italian drive was begun in 1885        turn allocated land rights to those he appointed to office and
from Mitsiwa, which Italy had occupied. From this port, the   to his soldiers. The rights allocated by the king were more
Italians began to penetrate the hinterland, with British      extensive than the gult rights prevailing in the north and left
encouragement. In 1887, after the Italians were soundly       most of the indigenous peoples as tenants, with far fewer
defeated at Dogali by Ras Alula, the governor of north-       rights than Amhara and Tigray peasants. Thus, the new
eastern Tigray, they sent a stronger force into the area.     landowners in the south were aliens and remained largely
Yohannis was unable to attend to the Italian threat because
of difficulties to the west in Gonder and Gojam. In 1887      At the same time that Menelik was extending his empire,
Sudanese Muslims, known as Mahdists, made incursions into     European colonial powers were showing an interest in the
Gojam and Begemdir and laid waste parts of those              territories surrounding Ethiopia. Menelik considered the
provinces. In 1889 the emperor met these forces in the        Italians a formidable challenge and negotiated the Treaty of
Wuchale with them in 1889 among its terms were those              designated his thirteen-year-old nephew, Lij Iyasu, son of
permitting the Italians to establish their first toehold on the   Ras Mikael of Welo, as his successor. After suffering another
edge of the northern highlands and from which they                stroke in late 1908, the emperor appointed Ras Tessema as
subsequently sought to expand into Tigray. Disagreements          regent. These developments ushered in a decade of political
over the contents of the treaty eventually induced Menelik        uncertainty. The great nobles, some with foreign financial
to renounce it and repay in full a loan Italy had granted as a    support, engaged in intrigues anticipating a time of troubles
condition. Thereafter, relations with Italy were further          as well as of opportunity upon Menelik's death.
strained as a result of the establishment of Eritrea as a
colony and Italy's penetration of the Somali territories.         Empress Taytu, who had borne no children, was heavily
                                                                  involved in court politics on behalf of her kin and friends,
Italian ambitions were encouraged by British actions in           most of who lived in the northern provinces and included
1891, when, hoping to stabilize the region in the face of the     persons who either had claims of their own to the throne or
Mahdist threat in Sudan, Britain agreed with the Italian          were resentful of Shewan hegemony. However, by 1910 her
government that Ethiopia should fall within the Italian           efforts had been thwarted by the Shewan nobles;
sphere of influence. France, however, encouraged Menelik          thereafter, the empress withdrew from political activity.
to oppose the Italian threat by delineating the projected
boundaries of his empire. Anxious to advance French               THE INTERREGNUM
economic interests through the construction of a railroad         The two years of Menelik's reign that followed the death of
from Addis Ababa to the city of Djibouti in French                Ras Tessema in 1911 found real power in the hands of Ras
Somaliland, France accordingly reduced the size of its            (later Negus) Mikael of Welo, an Oromo and former Muslim,
territorial claims there and recognized Ethiopian sovereignty     who had converted to Christianity under duress. Mikael
in the area.                                                      could muster an army of 80,000 in his predominantly
                                                                  Muslim province and commanded the allegiance of Oromo
Italian-Ethiopian relations reached a low point in 1895,          outside it. In December 1913, Menelik died, but fear of civil
when Ras Mengesha of Tigray, hitherto reluctant to                war induced the court to keep his death secret for some
recognize the Shewan emperor's claims, was threatened by          time. Although recognized as emperor, Menelik's nephew,
the Italians and asked for the support of Menelik. In late        Lij Iyasu, was not formally crowned. The old nobility quickly
1895, Italian forces invaded Tigray. However, Menelik             attempted to reassert its power, which Menelik had
completely routed them in early 1896 as they approached           undercut, and united against Lij Iyasu. At the outbreak of
the Tigrayan capital, Adwa. This victory brought Ethiopia         World War I, encouraged by his father and by German and
new prestige as well as general recognition of its sovereign      Turkish diplomats, Lij Iyasu adopted the Islamic faith.
status by the European powers. Besides confirming the             Seeking to revive Muslim-Oromo predominance, Lij Iyasu
annulment of the Treaty of Wuchale, the peace agreement           placed the eastern half of Ethiopia under Ras Mikael's
ending the conflict also entailed Italian recognition of          control, officially placed his country in religious dependence
Ethiopian independence; in return, Menelik permitted the          on the Ottoman sultan-caliph, and established cordial
Italians to retain their colony of Eritrea.                       relations with Somali leader Muhammad Abdullah Hassan.

In addition to attempts on the part of Britain, France, and       The Shewan nobility immediately secured excommunicating
Italy to gain influence within the empire, Menelik was            Lij Iyasu and deposing him as emperor from the head of the
troubled by intrigues originating in Russia, Germany, and         Ethiopian Orthodox Church a proclamation. Menelik's
the Ottoman Empire. But, showing a great capacity to play         daughter, Zawditu, was declared empress. Tafari Mekonnen,
one power off against another, the emperor was able to            the son of Ras Mekonnen of Harer (who was a descendant of
avoid making any substantial concessions. Moreover, while         a Shewan negus and a supporter of the nobles), was
pursuing his own territorial designs, Menelik joined with         declared regent and heir to the throne and given the title of
France in 1898 to penetrate Sudan at Fashoda and then             ras. By virtue of the power and prestige he derived from his
cooperated with British forces in British Somaliland between      achievements as one of Menelik's generals, Habte Giorgis,
1900 and 1904 to put down a rebellion in the Ogaden by            the minister of war and a traditionalist, continued to play a
Somali leader Muhammad Abdullah Hassan. By 1908 the               major role in government affairs until his death in 1926.
colonial powers had recognized Ethiopia's borders except for      Although Lij Iyasu was captured in a brief military campaign
those with Italian Somaliland.                                    in 1921 and imprisoned until his death in 1936, his father,
                                                                  Negus Mikael, continued for some time to pose a serious
After Menelik suffered a disabling stroke in May 1906, his        challenge to the government in Addis Ababa. The death of
personal control over the empire weakened. Apparently             Habte Giorgis in 1926 left Tafari in effective control of the
responding to that weakness and seeking to avoid an               government. In 1928 he was crowned negus. When the
outbreak of conflict in the area, Britain, France, and Italy      empress died in 1930, Tafari succeeded to the throne
signed the Tripartite Treaty, which declared that the             without contest. Seventeen years after the death of Menelik,
common purpose of the three powers was to maintain the            the succession struggle thus ended in favour of Tafari.
political status quo and to respect each other's interests.
Britain's interest, it was recognized, lay around Lake Tana       Well before his crowning as negus, Tafari began to introduce
and the headwaters of the Abay (Blue Nile). Italy's chief         a degree of modernization into Ethiopia. As early as 1920,
interest was in linking Eritrea with Italian Somaliland.          he ordered administrative regulations and legal codebooks
France's interest was the territory to be traversed by the        from various European countries to provide models for his
railroad from Addis Ababa to Djibouti in French Somaliland.       newly created bureaucracy. Ministers were also appointed to
                                                                  advise the regent and were given official accommodations in
Apparently recognizing that his political strength was            the capital. To ensure the growth of a class of educated
ebbing, Menelik established a Council of Ministers in late        young men who might be useful in introducing reforms in
1907 to assist in the management of state affairs. The            the years ahead, Tafari promoted government schooling. He
foremost aspirants to the throne, Ras Mekonnen and Ras            enlarged the school Menelik had established for the sons of
Mengesha, had died in 1906. In June 1908, the emperor             nobles and founded Tafari Mekonnen Elementary School in
1925. In addition, he took steps to improve health and           that were linked to the traditional political order. Abolition of
social services.                                                 the pattern of gult rights in the Amhara-Tigray highlands
Tafari also acted to extend his power base and to secure         and the system of land allocation in the south would have
allies abroad. In 1919, after efforts to gain membership in      amounted to a social and economic revolution that Haile
the League of Nations were blocked because of the                Selassie was not prepared to undertake.
existence of slavery in Ethiopia, he (and Empress Zawditu)
complied with the norms of the international community by        The emperor took non-military measures to promote loyalty
banning the slave trade in 1923. That same year, Ethiopia        to the throne and to the state. He established new
was unanimously voted membership in the League of                elementary and secondary schools in Addis Ababa, and
Nations. Continuing to seek international approval of the        some 150 university-age students studied abroad. The
country's internal conditions, the government enacted laws       government enacted a penal code in 1930, imported
in 1924 that provided for the gradual emancipation of slaves     printing presses to provide nationally oriented newspapers,
and their offspring and created a government bureau to           increased the availability of electricity and telephone
oversee the process. The exact degree of servitude was           services, and promoted public health. The Bank of Ethiopia,
difficult to determine, however, as the majority of slaves       founded in 1931, commenced issuing Ethiopian currency.
worked in households and were considered, at least among
Amhara and Tigray, to be second-class family members.            ITALIAN RULE AND WORLD WAR II
Ethiopia signed a twenty-year treaty of friendship with Italy    ITALIAN ADMINISTRATION IN ERITREA
in 1928, providing for an Ethiopian free-trade zone at Aseb      A latecomer to the scramble for colonies in Africa, Italy
in Eritrea and the construction of a road from the port to       established itself first in Eritrea (its name was derived from
Dese in Welo. A joint company controlled road traffic.           the Latin term for the Red Sea, Mare Erythreum) in the
Contact with the outside world expanded further when the         1880s and secured Ethiopian recognition of its claim in
emperor engaged a Belgian military mission in 1929 to train      1889. Despite its failure to penetrate Tigray in 1896, Italy
the royal bodyguards. In 1930 negotiations started between       retained control over Eritrea. A succession of Italian chief
Ethiopia and various international banking institutions for      administrators, or governors, maintained a degree of unity
the establishment of the Bank of Ethiopia. In the same year,     and public order in a region marked by cultural, linguistic,
Tafari signed the Arms Traffic Act with Britain, France, and     and religious diversity. Eritrea also experienced material
Italy, by which unauthorized persons were denied the right       progress in many areas before Ethiopia proper did so.
to import arms. The act also recognized the government's
right to procure arms against external aggression and to         One of the most important developments during the post-
maintain internal order.                                         1889 period was the growth of an Eritrean public
                                                                 administration. The Italians employed many Eritreans to
HAILE SELASSIE: THE PRE-WAR PERIOD 1930 - 36                     work in public service--particularly the police and public
Although Empress Zawditu died in April 1930, it was not          works--and fostered      loyalty  by granting     Eritreans
until November that Negus Tafari was crowned Haile               emoluments and status symbols. The local population
Selassie I, "Conquering Lion of the Tribe of Judah, Elect of     shared in the benefits conferred under Italian colonial
God, and King of Kings of Ethiopia." As emperor, Haile           administration, especially through newly created medical
Selassie continued to push reforms aimed at modernizing          services, agricultural improvements, and the provision of
the country and breaking the nobility's authority.               urban amenities in Asmera and Mitsiwa.
Henceforth, the great rases were forced either to obey the
emperor or to engage in treasonable opposition to him.           After Benito Mussolini assumed power in Italy in 1922, the
                                                                 colonial government in Eritrea changed. The new
In July 1931, the emperor granted a constitution that            administration stressed the racial and political superiority of
asserted his own status, reserved imperial succession to the     Italians, authorized segregation, and relegated the local
line of Haile Selassie, and declared that "the person of the     people to the lowest level of public employment. At the
Emperor is sacred, his dignity inviolable, and his power         same time, Rome implemented agricultural improvements
indisputable." All power over central and local government,      and established a basis for commercial agriculture on farms
the legislature, the judiciary, and the military remained with   run by Italian colonists.
the emperor. The constitution was essentially an effort to
provide a legal basis for replacing the traditional provincial   State control of the economic sphere was matched by
rulers with appointees loyal to the emperor.                     tighter political control. Attempts at improving the
                                                                 management of the colony, however, did not transform it
The new strength of the imperial government was                  into a self-sufficient entity. The colony's most important
demonstrated in 1932 when a revolt led by Ras Hailu Balaw        function was to serve as a strategic base for future
of Gojam in support of Lij Iyasu was quickly suppressed and      aggrandizement.
a new non-traditional governor put in Hailu's place. By 1934
reliable provincial rulers had been established throughout       As late as September 29, 1934, Rome affirmed its 1928
the traditional Amhara territories of Shewa, Gojam, and          treaty of friendship with Ethiopia. Nonetheless, it became
Begemdir, as well as in Kefa and Sidamo--well outside the        clear that Italy wished to expand and link its holdings in the
core Amhara area. The only traditional leader capable of         Horn of Africa. Moreover, the international climate of the
overtly challenging central rule at this point was the ras of    mid-1930s provided Italy with the expectation that
Tigray. Other peoples, although in no position to confront       aggression could be undertaken with impunity. Determined
the emperor, remained almost entirely outside the control of     to provoke a casus belli, the Mussolini regime began
the imperial government.                                         deliberately exploiting the minor provocations that arose in
                                                                 its relations with Ethiopia.
Although Haile Selassie placed administrators of his own
choosing wherever he could and thus sought to limit the          In December 1934, an incident took place at Welwel in the
power of the rases and other nobles with regional power          Ogaden, a site of wells used by Somali nomads regularly
bases, he did not directly attack the systems of land tenure     traversing the borders between Ethiopia and British
Somaliland and Italian Somaliland. The Italians had built       projects were undertaken. One result was the construction
fortified positions in Welwel in 1930 and, because there had    of the country's first system of improved roads. In the
been no protests, assumed that the international community      meantime, however, the Italians had decreed miscegenation
had recognized their rights over this area. However, an         to be illegal. Racial separation, including residential
Anglo-Ethiopian boundary commission challenged the Italian      segregation, was enforced as thoroughly as possible. The
position when it visited Welwel in late November 1934 on its    Italians showed favouritism to non - Christian Oromo (some
way to set territorial boundary markers. On encountering        of whom had supported the invasion), Somali, and other
Italian belligerence, the commission's members withdrew         Muslims in an attempt to isolate the Amhara, who supported
but left behind their Ethiopian military escort, which          Haile Selassie.
eventually fought a battle with Italian units.
                                                                Ethiopian resistance continued, nonetheless. Early in 1938,
In September 1935, the League of Nations exonerated both        a revolt broke out in Gojam led by the Committee of Unity
parties in the Welwel incident. The long delay and the          and Collaboration, which was made up of some of the
intricate British and French manoeuvrings persuaded             young, educated elite who had escaped the reprisal after
Mussolini that no obstacle would be placed in his path. An      the attempt on Graziani's life. In exile in Britain, the
Anglo-French proposal in August 1935 -just before the           emperor sought to gain the support of the Western
League of Nations ruling - that the signatories to the 1906     democracies for his cause but had little success until Italy
Tripartite Treaty collaborate for the purpose of assisting in   entered World War II on the side of Germany in June 1940.
the modernization and reorganization of Ethiopian internal      Thereafter, Britain and the emperor sought to cooperate
affairs, subject to the consent of Ethiopia, was flatly         with Ethiopian and other indigenous forces in a campaign to
rejected by the Italians. On October 3, 1935, Italy attacked    dislodge the Italians from Ethiopia and from British
Ethiopia from Eritrea and Italian Somaliland without a          Somaliland, which the Italians seized in August 1940, and to
declaration of war. On October 7, the League of Nations         resist the Italian invasion of Sudan. Haile Selassie
unanimously declared Italy an aggressor but took no             proceeded immediately to Khartoum, where he established
effective action.                                               closer liaison with both the British headquarters and the
                                                                resistance forces within Ethiopia.
In a war that lasted seven months, Ethiopia was
outmatched by Italy in armaments - a situation exacerbated      ETHIOPIA IN WORLD WAR II
by the fact that a League of Nations arms embargo was not       The wresting of Ethiopia from the occupying Italian forces
enforced against Italy. Despite a valiant defence, the next     involved British personnel, composed largely of South
six months saw the Ethiopians pushed back on the northern       African and African colonial troops penetrating from the
front and in Harerge. Acting on long-standing grievances, a     south, west, and north, supported by Ethiopian guerrillas. It
segment of the Tigray forces defected, as did Oromo forces      was the task of an Anglo-Ethiopian mission, eventually
in some areas. Moreover, the Italians made widespread use       commanded by Colonel Orde Wingate, to coordinate the
of chemical weapons and air power. On March 31, 1936, the       activities of the Ethiopian forces in support of the campaign.
Ethiopians counterattacked the main Italian force at            The emperor arrived in Gojam on January 20, 1941, and
Maychew but were defeated. By early April 1936, Italian         immediately undertook the task of bringing the various local
forces had reached Dese in the north and Harer in the east.     resistance groups under his control.
On May 2, Haile Selassie left for French Somaliland and exile
- a move resented by some Ethiopians who were                   The campaigns of 1940 and 1941 were based on a British
accustomed to a warrior emperor. The Italian forces entered     strategy of preventing Italian forces from attacking or
Addis Ababa on May 5. Four days later, Italy announced the      occupying neighbouring British possessions, while at the
annexation of Ethiopia.                                         same time pressing northward from East Africa through
                                                                Italian Somaliland and eastern Ethiopia to isolate Italian
On June 30, Haile Selassie made a powerful speech before        troops in the highlands. This thrust was directed at the
the League of Nations in Geneva in which he set forth two       Harer and Dire Dawa area, with the objective of cutting the
choices - support for collective security or international      rail link between Addis Ababa and Djibouti. At the same
lawlessness. The emperor stirred the conscience of many         time, British troops from Sudan penetrated Eritrea to cut off
and was thereafter regarded as a major international figure.    Italian forces from the Red Sea. The campaign in the north
Britain and France, however, soon recognized Italy's control    ended in February and March of 1941 with the Battle of
of Ethiopia. Among the major powers, the United States and      Keren and the defeat of Italian troops in Eritrea. By March
the Soviet Union refused to do so.                              3, Italian Somaliland had fallen to British forces, and soon
                                                                after the Italian governor initiated negotiations for the
In early June 1936, Rome promulgated a constitution             surrender of the remaining Italian forces. On May 5, 1941,
bringing Ethiopia, Eritrea, and Italian Somaliland together     Haile Selassie re-entered Addis Ababa, but it was not until
into a single administrative unit divided into six provinces.   January 1942 that the last of the Italians, cut off near
On June 11, 1936, Marshal Rodolfo Graziani replaced             Gonder, surrendered to British and Ethiopian forces.
Marshal Pietro Badoglio, who had commanded the Italian
forces in the war. In December, the Italians declared the       During the war years, British military officials left
whole country to be pacified and under their effective          responsibility for internal affairs in the emperor's hands.
control. Ethiopian resistance nevertheless continued.           However, it was agreed that all acts relating to the war
                                                                effort--domestic or international - required British approval.
After a failed assassination attempt against Graziani on        Without defining the limits of authority, both sides also
February 19, 1937, the colonial authorities executed 30,000     agreed that the emperor would issue "proclamations" and
persons, including about half of the younger, educated          the British military administration would issue "public
Ethiopian population. This harsh policy, however, did not       notices." Without consulting the British, Haile Selassie
pacify the country. In November 1937, Rome therefore            appointed a seven-member cabinet and a governor of Addis
appointed a new governor and instructed him to adopt a          Ababa, but for tactical reasons he announced that they
more flexible line. Accordingly, large-scale public works
would serve as        advisers    to   the   British   military   generation full of frustrated expectations, clashed with
administration.                                                   forces bent on maintaining the traditional system.

This interim Anglo-Ethiopian arrangement was replaced in          CHANGE AND RESISTANCE
January 1942 by a new agreement that contained a military         The expansion of central authority by appointed officials
convention. The convention provided for British assistance        required a dependable tax base, and that in turn encroached
in the organization of a new Ethiopian army that was to be        on the established prerogatives of those who had been
trained by a British military mission. In addition to attaching   granted large holdings in the south and of gult-holders of
officers to Ethiopian army battalions, the British assigned       the Amhara-Tigray highlands. Consequently, in March 1942,
advisers to most ministries and to some provincial                without reference to the restored parliament, the emperor
governors. British assistance strengthened the emperor's          decreed a taxation system that divided all land into one of
efforts to substitute, as his representatives in the provinces,   three categories: fertile, semi fertile, and poor. A fixed levy,
experienced administrators for the traditional nobility. But      depending on category, was imposed for each gasha (forty
such help was rejected whenever proposed reforms                  hectares) of land.
threatened to weaken the emperor's personal control.              The nobles of Gojam, Tigray, and Begemdir refused to
                                                                  accept any limitation upon the prevailing land tenure system
The terms of the agreement confirmed Ethiopia's status as a       and successfully battled the government over the issue. The
sovereign state. However, the Ogaden and certain strategic        emperor acknowledged defeat by excluding those provinces
areas, such as the French Somaliland border, the Addis            from the tax. When landlords elsewhere also protested the
Ababa-Djibouti railroad, and the Haud (collectively termed        tax, the emperor exempted them as well, contenting himself
the "Reserved Areas"), remained temporarily under British         with a flat 10 percent tithe on all but church land. But this
administration. Other provisions set forth recruitment            tax, traditionally collected by landlords, was simply passed
procedures for additional British advisers should they be         on to the tenants. In short, the emperor pursued policies
requested. About the same time, a United States economic          that did not infringe on the rights of the nobility and other
mission arrived, thereby laying the groundwork for an             large landholders. In 1951, in response to additional
alliance that in time would significantly affect the country's    pressure from the landlords, Haile Selassie further reduced
direction.                                                        the land tax payable by landlords and not covered by
                                                                  previous exemptions; the peasant cultivator, as in centuries
A British-trained national police administration and police       past, continued to carry the entire taxation burden.
force gradually took the place of the police who had served
earlier in the retinues of the provincial governors.              Some reform was also affected within the Ethiopian
Opposition to these changes was generally minor except for        Orthodox Church. In July 1948, Haile Selassie initiated
a revolt in 1943 in Tigray--long a stronghold of resistance to    steps, completed in 1956, by which he, rather than the
the Shewans and another in the Ogaden, inhabited chiefly          patriarch of Alexandria, would appoint the abun, or
by the Somali. British aircraft brought from Aden helped          patriarch, of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church. Thus, for the
quell the Tigray rebellion, and two battalions of Ethiopian       first time in sixteen centuries of Ethiopian Christianity, an
troops suppressed the Ogaden uprising. The 1942 Anglo-            Ethiopian rather than an Egyptian served as head of the
Ethiopian agreement enabled the British military to disarm        national church. The Ethiopian church, however, continued
the Somali rebels and to patrol the region.                       to recognize the primacy of the Alexandrian see. This
                                                                  appointment was followed by the creation of enough new
After Haile Selassie returned to the throne in 1941, the          bishoprics to allow the Ethiopians to elect their own
British assumed control over currency and foreign exchange        patriarch. Abuna Basilios, the first Ethiopian archbishop, was
as well as imports and exports. Additionally, the British         elevated to the status of patriarch in 1959. The post-war
helped Ethiopia to rehabilitate its national bureaucracy.         years also saw a change in the church-state relationship;
These changes, as well as innovations made by the Italians        the vast church landholdings became subject to tax
during the occupation, brought home to many Ethiopians            legislation, and the clergy lost the right to try fellow church
the need to modernize, at least in some sectors of public         officials for civil offences in their own court.
life, if the country were to survive as an independent entity.
                                                                  Acutely aware of his international image, Haile Selassie also
In addition, the emperor made territorial demands, but            was active on the diplomatic front Ethiopia was a founding
these met with little sympathy from the British. Requests for     member of the United Nations (UN) and the Organization of
the annexation of Eritrea, which the Ethiopians claimed to        African Unity (OAU). After the post-war relationship with
be racially, culturally, and economically inseparable from        Britain wound down, the emperor in 1953 asked the United
Ethiopia, were received with awareness on the part of the         States for military assistance and economic support.
British of a growing Eritrean sense of separate political         Although his dependence on Washington grew, Haile
identity. Similarly, Italian Somaliland was intended by the       Selassie diversified the sources of his international
British to be part of "Greater Somalia"; thus, the emperor's      assistance, which included such disparate nations as Italy,
claims to that territory were also rejected.                      China, the Federal Republic of Germany (West Germany),
                                                                  Taiwan, Yugoslavia, Sweden, and the Soviet Union.
THE POST-WAR PERIOD, 1945-60: REFORM AND                          ETHIOPIA
OPPOSITION                                                        ADMINISTRATIVE CHANGE AND THE 1955
Despite criticism of the emperor's 1936 decision to go into       CONSTITUTION
exile, the concept of the monarchy remained widely                In pursuit of reform, Haile Selassie faced the recalcitrance of
accepted after World War II. The country's leaders and the        the provincial nobility, other great landholders, and church
church assumed that victory over the Italians essentially         officials--all of whom intended to maintain their power and
meant the restoration of their traditional privileges. Before     privileges. Moreover, some provincial nobility opposed the
long, however, new social classes stirred into life by Haile      emperor because of their own long-held claims to the
Selassie's centralizing policies, as well as a younger            throne. Whatever his intentions as a reformer, Haile
Selassie was a political realist and recognized that, lacking a
strong military, he had to compromise with the Amhara and         The bicameral Ethiopian parliament played no part in
Tigray nobility and with the church. And, where required, he      drawing up the 1955 constitution, which, far from limiting
made his peace with other ethnic groups in the empire. For        the emperor's control, emphasized the religious origins of
example, he eventually granted autonomy over Afar areas           imperial power and extended the centralization process. The
that Addis Ababa could not dominate by armed force to the         Senate remained appointive, but the Chamber of Deputies
sultan of Aussa. In general, political changes were few and       was, at least nominally, elected. However, the absence of a
were compromised at the first sign of substantial opposition.     census, the near total illiteracy of the population, and the
In the 1950s, despite his many years as emperor and his           domination of the countryside by the nobility meant that the
international stature, there was almost no significant section    majority of candidates who sought election in 1957 were in
of the Ethiopian population on which Haile Selassie could         effect chosen by the elite. The Chamber of Deputies was not
rely to support him in such efforts.                              altogether a rubber stamp, at times discussing bills and
                                                                  questioning state ministers. However, provisions in the
The emperor sought to gain some control over local                constitution that guaranteed personal freedoms and
government by placing it in the hands of the central              liberties, including freedom of assembly, movement, and
administration in Addis Ababa. He revised the administrative      speech, and the due process of law, were so far removed
divisions and established political and administrative offices    from the realities of Ethiopian life that no group or individual
corresponding to them. The largest of these administrative        sought to act upon them publicly.
units were the provinces (teklay ghizats), of which there
were fourteen in the mid-1960s, each under a governor             THE ATTEMPTED COUP OF 1960 AND ITS AFTERMATH
general appointed directly by Haile Selassie. Each province       Haile Selassie's efforts to achieve a measure of change
was subdivided into sub provinces (awrajas), districts            without jeopardizing his own power stimulated rising
(weredas), and sub districts (mikitil weredas). Although the      expectations, some of which he was unwilling or unable to
structure outwardly resembled a modern state apparatus,           satisfy. Impatient with the rate or form of social and political
its impact was largely dissipated by the fact that higher-        change, several groups conspired to launch a coup d'état on
ranking landed nobles held all the important offices.             December 13, 1960, while the emperor was abroad on one
Younger and better-educated officials were little more than       of his frequent trips. The leadership of the 1960 revolt came
aides to the governors general, and their superiors               from three groups: the commander of the Imperial
contemptuously set their advice more often than not aside.        Bodyguard Mengistu Neway, and his followers; a few
                                                                  security officials, including the police chief; and a handful of
The emperor also attempted to strengthen the national             radical intellectuals related to the officials, including
government. A new generation of educated Ethiopians was           Girmame Neway, Mengistu's brother.
introduced to new enlarged ministries, the powers of which
were made more specific. The emperor established a                The coup was initially successful in the capital, as the rebels
national judiciary and appointed its judges. Finally, in 1955     seized the crown prince and more than twenty cabinet
he proclaimed a revised constitution. Apparently, he sought       ministers and other government leaders. The support of the
to provide a formal basis for his efforts at centralization and   Imperial Bodyguard, the backbone of the revolt, was
to attract the loyalty of those who gained their livelihood       obtained without informing the enlisted men--or even a
from relatively modern economic activities or who were            majority of the officers--of the purpose of the rebels'
better educated than most Ethiopians.                             actions. The proclaimed intent of the coup leaders was the
                                                                  establishment of a government that would improve the
The younger leaders were mostly the sons of the traditional       economic, social, and political position of the general
elite. Having been educated abroad, they were favourably          population, but they also appealed to traditional authority in
disposed toward reform and were frequently frustrated and         the person of the crown prince. No mention was made of
in some cases alienated by their inability to initiate and        the emperor.
implement it. The remnants of the small number of
educated Ethiopians of an earlier generation had been             The coup's leaders failed to achieve popular support for their
appointed to high government positions. But whatever their        actions. Although university students demonstrated in
previous concern with reform, they had little impact on           favour of the coup, army and air force units remained loyal
traditional methods, and by the mid-1950s even this earlier       to the emperor, who returned to the capital on December
reformist elite was considered conservative by the                17. The patriarch of the church, who condemned the rebels
succeeding generation.                                            as antireligious traitors and called for fealty to the emperor,
                                                                  supported the loyalists. Despite the coup's failure, it
The new elite were drawn largely from the post-war                succeeded in stripping the monarchy of its claim to universal
generation and were generally the product of a half-dozen         acceptance and led to a polarization of traditional and
secondary schools operated by foreign staffs. A majority of       modern forces.
the students continued to come from families of the landed
nobility, but they were profoundly affected by the presence       GROWTH OF SECESSIONIST THREATS
of students from less affluent backgrounds and by their           Outside the Amhara-Tigray heartland, the two areas posing
more democratically oriented Western teachers.                    the most consistent problems for Ethiopia's rulers were
                                                                  Eritrea and the largely Somali-occupied Ogaden and
The 1955 constitution was prompted, like its 1931                 adjacent regions.
predecessor, by a concern with international opinion. Such
opinion was particularly important at a time when some            THE LIBERATION STRUGGLE IN ERITREA
neighbouring African states were rapidly advancing under          Eritrea had been placed under British military administration
European colonial tutelage and Ethiopia was pressing its          in 1941 after the Italian surrender. In keeping with a 1950
claims internationally for the incorporation of Eritrea, where    decision of the UN General Assembly, British military
an elected parliament and more modern administration had          administration ended in September 1952 and was replaced
existed since 1952.                                               by a new autonomous Eritrean government in federal union
with Ethiopia. Federation with the former Italian colony             archconservative Ras Asrate Kasa as governor general, the
restored an unhindered maritime frontier to the country.             emperor was accused of "refeudalizing" the territory.
The new arrangement also enabled the country to gain                 The extinction of the federation consolidated internal and
limited control of a territory that, at least in its inland areas,   external opposition to union Four years earlier, in 1958; a
was more advanced politically and economically.                      number of Eritrean exiles had founded the Eritrean
                                                                     Liberation Movement (ELM) in Cairo, under Hamid Idris
The Four Power Inquiry Commission established by the                 Awate's leadership. This organization, however, soon was
World War II Allies (Britain, France, the Soviet Union, and          neutralized. A new faction, the Eritrean Liberation Front
the United States) had failed to agree in its September 1948         (ELF), emerged in 1960. Initially a Muslim movement, the
report on a future course for Eritrea. Several countries had         ELF was nationalist rather than Marxist and received Iraqi
displayed an active interest in the area. In the immediate           and Syrian support. As urban Christians joined, the ELF
post-war years, Italy had requested that Eritrea be returned         became more radical and ant capitalist. Beginning in 1961,
as a colony or as a trusteeship. This bid was supported              the ELF turned to armed struggle and by 1966 challenged
initially by the Soviet Union, which anticipated a communist         imperial forces throughout Eritrea.
victory at the Italian polls. The Arab states, seeing Eritrea
and its large Muslim population as an extension of the Arab          The rapid growth of the ELF also created internal divisions
world, sought the establishment of an independent state.             between urban and rural elements, socialists and
Some Britons favoured a division of the territory, with the          nationalists, and Christians and Muslims. Although these
Christian areas and the coast from Mitsiwa southward going           divisions did not take any clear form, they were magnified
to Ethiopia and the northwest area going to Sudan.                   as the ELF extended its operations and won international
                                                                     publicity. In June 1970, Osman Salah Sabbe, former head of
A UN commission, which arrived in Eritrea in February 1950,          the Muslim League, broke away from the ELF and formed
eventually approved a plan involving some form of                    the Popular Liberation Forces (PLF), which led directly to the
association with Ethiopia. In December the UN General                founding of the Eritrean People's Liberation Front (EPLF) in
Assembly adopted a resolution affirming the commission's             early 1972. Both organizations initially attracted a large
plan, with the provision that Britain, the administering             number of urban, intellectual, and leftist Christian youths
power, should facilitate the UN efforts and depart from the          and projected a strong socialist and nationalist image. By
colony no later than September 15, 1952. Faced with this             1975 the EPLF had more than 10,000 members in the field.
constraint, the British administration held elections on             However, the growth of the EPLF was also accompanied by
March 16, 1952, for a Representative Assembly of sixty-              an intensification of internecine Eritrean conflict, particularly
eight members. This body, made up equally of Christians              between 1972 and 1974, when casualties were well over
and Muslims, accepted the draft constitution advanced by             1,200. In 1976 Osman broke with the EPLF and formed the
the UN commissioner on July 10. The constitution was                 Eritrean Liberation Front-Popular Liberation Front (ELF-PLF),
ratified by the emperor on September 11, and the                     a division that reflected differences between combatants in
Representative    Assembly,    by    prearrangement,    was          Eritrea and representatives abroad as well as personal
transformed into the Eritrean Assembly three days before             rivalries and basic ideological differences, factors important
the federation was proclaimed.                                       in earlier splits within the Eritrean separatist movement.

The UN General Assembly resolution of September 15,                  Encouraged by the imperial regime's collapse and attendant
1952, adopted by a vote of forty-seven to ten, provided that         confusion, the guerrillas extended their control over the
Eritrea should be linked to Ethiopia through a loose federal         whole region by 1977. Ethiopian forces were largely
structure under the emperor's sovereignty but with a form            confined to urban centres and controlled the major roads
and organization of internal self-government. The federal            only by day
government, which for all intents and purposes was the
existing imperial government, was to control foreign affairs,        DISCONTENT IN TIGRAY
defence, foreign and interstate commerce, transportation,            Overt dissidence in Tigray during Haile Selassie's reign
and finance. Control over domestic affairs (including police,        centred on the 1943 resistance to imperial rule known as
local administration, and taxation to meet its own budget)           the Weyane. The movement took advantage of popular
was to be exercised by an elected Eritrean assembly on the           discontent against Amhara rule but was primarily a localized
parliamentary model. The state was to have its own                   resistance to imperial rule that depended on three main
administrative and judicial structure and its own flag.              sources of support. These were the semi pastoralists of
                                                                     eastern Tigray, including the Azebo and Raya, who believed
Almost from the start of federation, the emperor's                   their traditional Oromo social structure to be threatened;
representative undercut the territory's separate status              the local Tigray nobility, who perceived their position to be
under the federal system. In August 1955, Tedla Bairu, an            endangered by the central government's growth; and the
Eritrean who was the chief executive elected by the                  peasantry, who felt victimized by government officials and
assembly, resigned under pressure from the emperor, who              their militias.
replaced Tedla with his own nominee. He made Amharic the
official language in place of Arabic and Tigrinya, terminated        The course of the Weyane was relatively brief, lasting from
the use of the Eritrean flag, and moved many businesses              May 22 to October 14, 1943. Although the rebels made
out of Eritrea. In addition, the central government                  some initial gains, the imperial forces, supported by British
proscribed all political parties, imposed censorship, gave the       aircraft, soon took the offensive. Poor military leadership,
top administrative positions to Amhara, and abandoned the            combined with disagreements among the rebel leaders,
principle of parity between Christian and Muslim officials. In       detracted from the effectiveness of their efforts. After the
November 1962, the Eritrean Assembly, many of whose                  fall of Mekele, capital of Tigray, on October 14, 1943,
members had been accused of accepting bribes, voted                  practically   all  organized resistance     collapsed. The
unanimously to change Eritrea's status to that of a province         government exiled or imprisoned the leaders of the revolt.
of    Ethiopia.    Following     his   appointment    of   the       The emperor took reprisals against peasants suspected of
                                                                     supporting the Weyane.
                                                                  Within six months after Somali independence, military
Although a military resolution of the Weyane restored             incidents occurred between Ethiopian and Somali forces
imperial authority to Tigray, the harsh measures used by          along their mutual border. Confrontations escalated again in
the Ethiopian military to do so created resentment of             1964, when the Ethiopian air force raided Somali villages
imperial rule in many quarters. This resentment, coupled          and encampments inside the Somali border. Hostilities were
with a longstanding feeling that Shewan Amhara rule was of        ended through mediation by the OAU and Sudan. However,
an upstart nature, lasted through the end of Haile Selassie's     Somalia continued to promote irredentism by supporting the
reign. After Haile Selassie's demise in 1974, separatist          Western Somali Liberation Front (WSLF), which was active
feelings again emerged throughout Tigray.                         in the Ogaden. Claims of oil discoveries prompted the
                                                                  resurgence of fighting in 1973.
Ethiopia's entry into the Somali region in modern times           REVOLUTION AND MILITARY GOVERNMENT
dated from Menelik's conquest of Harer in the late 1890s,         In early 1974, Ethiopia entered a period of profound
the emperor basing his actions on old claims of Ethiopian         political, economic,    and    social   change,    frequently
sovereignty. In 1945 Haile Selassie, fearing the possibility of   accompanied by violence. Confrontation between traditional
British support for a separate Somali state that would            and modern forces erupted and changed the political,
include the Ogaden, claimed Italian Somaliland as a "lost         economic, and social nature of the Ethiopian state.
province." In Italian Somaliland, the Somali Youth League
(SYL) resisted this claim and in its turn demanded                BACKGROUND TO REVOLUTION - 1960-74
unification of all Somali areas, including those in Ethiopia.     The last fourteen years of Haile Selassie's reign witnessed
                                                                  growing opposition to his regime. After the suppression of
After the British evacuated the Ogaden in 1948, Ethiopian         the 1960 coup attempt, the emperor sought to reclaim the
officers took over administration in the city of Jijiga, at one   loyalty of coup sympathizers by stepping up reform. Much of
point suppressing a demonstration led by the SYL, which the       this effort took the form of land grants to military and police
government subsequently outlawed. At the same time,               officers, however, and no coherent pattern of economic and
Ethiopia renounced its claim to Italian Somaliland in             social development appeared.
deference to UN calls for self-determination. The Ethiopians,
however, maintained that self-determination was not               In 1966 a plan emerged to confront the traditional forces
incompatible with eventual union.                                 through the implementation of a modern tax system.
                                                                  Implicit in the proposal, which required registration of all
Immediately upon the birth of the Republic of Somalia in          land, was the aim of destroying the power of the landed
1960, which followed the merger of British Somaliland and         nobility. But when progressive tax proposals were submitted
Italian Somaliland, the new country proclaimed an                 to parliament in the late 1960s, they were vigorously
irredentist policy. Somalia laid claim to Somali-populated        opposed by the members, all of whom were property
regions of French Somaliland (later called the French             owners. Parliament passed a tax on agricultural produce in
Territory of the Afars and Issas, and Djibouti after              November 1967, but in a form vastly altered from the
independence in 1977), the north-eastern corner of Kenya,         government proposal. Even this, however, was fiercely
and the Ogaden, a vast, ill-defined region occupied by            resisted by the landed class in Gojam, and the entire
Somali nomads extending southeast from Ethiopia's                 province revolted. In 1969, after two years of military
southern highlands that includes a separate region east of        action, the central government withdrew its troops,
Harer known as the Haud. The uncertainty over the precise         discontinued enforcement of the tax, and cancelled all
location of the frontier between Ethiopia and the former          arrears of taxation going back to 1940.
Italian possessions in Somalia further complicated these
claims. Despite UN efforts to promote an agreement, none          The emperor's defeat in Gojam encouraged defiance by
was made in the colonial or the Italian trusteeship period.       other provincial landowners, although not on the same
                                                                  scale. But legislation calling for property registration and for
In the northeast, an Anglo-Ethiopian treaty determined the        modification of landlord-tenant relationships was more
frontier's official location. However, Somalia contended that     boldly resisted in the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate.
it was unfairly placed so as to exclude the herders‟ resident     Debate on these proposals continued until the mid-1970s.
in Somalia from vital seasonal grazing lands in the Haud.         At the same time the emperor was facing opposition to
The British had administered the Haud as an integral part of      change; other forces were exerting direct or indirect
British Somaliland, although Ethiopian sovereignty had been       pressure in favour of reform. Beginning in 1965, student
recognized there. After it was disbanded in the rest of           demonstrations focused on the need to implement land
Ethiopia, the British military administration continued to        reform and to address corruption and rising prices. Peasant
supervise the area from Harer eastward and did not                disturbances, although on a small scale, were especially
withdraw from the Haud until 1955. Even then, the British         numerous in the southern provinces, where the imperial
stressed the region's importance to Somalia by requiring the      government had traditionally rewarded its supporters with
Ethiopians to guarantee the Somali free access to grazing         land grants. Although it allowed labour unions to organize in
lands.                                                            1962, the government restricted union activities. Soon,
                                                                  even the Confederation of Ethiopian Labour Unions (CELU)
Somalia refused to recognize any pre-1960 treaties defining       was criticized as being too subservient to the government.
the Somali-Ethiopian borders because colonial governments         Faced with such a multiplicity of problems, the aging
had concluded the agreements. Despite the need for access         emperor increasingly left domestic issues in the care of his
to pasturage for local herds, the Somali government even          prime minister, Aklilu Habte Wold (appointed in 1961), and
refused to acknowledge the British treaty guaranteeing            turned his attention to foreign affairs.
Somali grazing rights in the Haud because it would have
indirectly recognized Ethiopian sovereignty over the area.        THE ESTABLISHMENT OF THE DERG
                                                                  The government's failure to effect significant economic and
                                                                  political reforms over the previous fourteen years--
combined with rising inflation, corruption, a famine that        responsible to parliament. The new government probably
affected several provinces (but especially Welo and Tigray)      reflected Haile Selassie's decision to minimize change; the
and that was concealed from the outside world, and the           new cabinet, for instance, represented virtually all of
growing discontent of urban interest groups--provided the        Ethiopia's    aristocratic   families.    The   conservative
backdrop against which the Ethiopian revolution began to         constitutional committee appointed on March 21 included no
unfold in early 1974. Whereas elements of the urban-based,       representatives of the groups pressing for change. The new
modernizing elite previously had sought to establish a           government introduced no substantial reforms (although it
parliamentary democracy, the initiation of the 1974              granted the military several salary increases). It also
revolution was the work of the military, acting essentially in   postponed unpopular changes in the education system and
its own immediate interests. The unrest that began in            instituted price rollbacks and controls to check inflation. As
January of that year then spread to the civilian population in   a result, the general discontent subsided somewhat by late
an outburst of general discontent.                               March.

The Ethiopian military on the eve of the revolution was riven    By this time, there were several factions within the military
by factionalism; the emperor promoted such division to           that claimed to speak for all or part of the armed forces.
prevent any person or group from becoming too powerful.          These included the Imperial Bodyguard under the old high
Factions included the Imperial Bodyguard, which had been         command, a group of "radical" junior officers, and a larger
rebuilt since the 1960 coup attempt; the Territorial Army        number of moderate and radical army and police officers
(Ethiopia's national ground force), which was broken into        grouped around Colonel Alem Zewd Tessema, commander
many factions but which was dominated by a group of              of an airborne brigade based in Addis Ababa. In late March,
senior officers called "The Exiles" because they had fled with   Alem Zewd became head of an informal, inter-unit
Haile Selassie in 1936 after the Italian invasion; and the air   coordinating committee that came to be called the Armed
force. The officer graduates of the Harer Military Academy       Forces Coordinating Committee (AFCC). Acting with the
also formed a distinct group in opposition to the Holeta         approval of the new prime minister, Alem Zewd arrested a
Military Training Center graduates                               large number of disgruntled air force officers and in general
                                                                 appeared to support the Endalkatchew government.
Conditions    throughout    the    army     were   frequently
substandard, with enlisted personnel often receiving low pay     Such steps, however, did not please many of the junior
and insufficient food and supplies. Enlisted personnel as well   officers, who wished to pressure the regime into making
as some of the Holeta graduates came from the peasantry,         major political reforms. In early June, a dozen or more of
which at the time was suffering from a prolonged drought         them broke away from the AFCC and requested that every
and resulting famine. The general perception was that the        military and police unit send three representatives to Addis
central government was deliberately refusing to take special     Ababa to organize for further action. In late June, a body of
measures for famine relief. Much popular discontent over         men that eventually totalled about 120, none above the
this issue, plus the generally perceived lack of civil           rank of major and almost all of whom remained anonymous,
freedoms, had created widespread discontent among the            organized themselves into a new body called the
middle class, which had been built up and supported by the       Coordinating Committee of the Armed Forces, Police, and
emperor since World War II.                                      Territorial Army that soon came to be called the Derg
                                                                 (Amharic for "committee" or "council). They elected Major
The revolution began with a mutiny of the Territorial Army's     Mengistu Haile Mariam chairman and Major Atnafu Abate
Fourth Brigade at Negele in the southern province of Sidamo      vice chairman, both outspoken proponents of far-reaching
on January 12, 1974. Soldiers protested poor food and            change.
water conditions; led by their non-commissioned officers,
they rebelled and took their commanding officer hostage,         This group of men would remain at the forefront of political
requesting redress from the emperor. Attempts at                 and military affairs in Ethiopia for the next thirteen years.
reconciliation and a subsequent impasse promoted the             The identity of the Derg never changed after these initial
spread of the discontent to other units throughout the           meetings in 1974. Although its membership declined
military, including those stationed in Eritrea. There, the       drastically during the next few years as individual officers
Second Division at Asmera mutinied, imprisoned its               were eliminated, no new members were admitted into its
commanders, and announced its support for the Negele             ranks, and its deliberations and membership remained
mutineers. The Signal Corps, in sympathy with the uprising,      almost entirely unknown. At first, the Derg's officers
broadcast information about events to the rest of the            exercised their influence behind the scenes; only later,
military. Moreover, by that time, general discontent had         during the era of the Provisional Military Administrative
resulted in the rise of resistance throughout Ethiopia.          Council, did its leaders emerge from anonymity and become
Opposition to increased fuel prices and curriculum changes       both the official as well as the de facto governing personnel.
in the schools, as well as low teachers' salaries and many
other grievances, crystallized by the end of February.           Because its members in effect represented the entire
Teachers, workers, and eventually students--all demanding        military establishment, the Derg could henceforth claim to
higher pay and better conditions of work and education--         exercise real power and could mobilize troops on its own,
also promoted other causes, such as land reform and famine       thereby depriving the emperor's government of the ultimate
relief. Finally, the discontented groups demanded a new          means to govern. Although the Derg professed loyalty to the
political system. Riots in the capital and the continued         emperor, it immediately began to arrest members of the
military mutiny eventually led to the resignation of Prime       aristocracy, military, and government who were closely
Minister Aklilu. He was replaced on February 28, 1974, by        associated with the emperor and the old order. Colonel Alem
another Shewan aristocrat, Endalkatchew Mekonnen, whose          Zewd, by now discredited in the eyes of the young radicals,
government would last only until July 22.                        fled.

On March 5, the government announced a revision of the           In July the Derg wrung five concessions from the emperor--
1955 constitution--the prime minister henceforth would be        the release of all political prisoners, a guarantee of the safe
return    of    exiles,   the   promulgation     and    speedy   civilian demands. By mid-November, Aman, opposed by the
implementation of the new constitution, assurance that           majority of the Derg, was attempting unsuccessfully to
parliament would be kept in session to complete the              appeal directly to the army for support as charges, many
aforementioned task, and assurance that the Derg would be        apparently fabricated, mounted against him within the Derg.
allowed to coordinate closely with the government at all         He retired to his home and on November 23 was killed
levels of operation. Hereafter, political power and initiative   resisting arrest. The same evening of what became known
lay with the Derg, which was increasingly influenced by a        as "Bloody Saturday," fifty-nine political prisoners were
wide-ranging public debate over the future of the country.       executed. Among them were prominent civilians such as
The demands made of the emperor were but the first of a          Aklilu and Endalkatchew, military officers such as Colonel
series of directives or actions that constituted the "creeping   Alem Zewd and General Abiye Abebe (the emperor's son-in-
coup" by which the imperial system of government was             law and defense minister under endalkatchew), and two
slowly dismantled. Promoting an agenda for lasting changes       Derg members who had supported Aman.
going far beyond those proposed since the revolution began       Following the events of Bloody Saturday, Brigadier General
in January, the Derg proclaimed Ethiopia Tikdem (Ethiopia        Tafari Banti, a Shewan, became chairman of the PMAC and
First) as its guiding philosophy. It forced out Prime Minister   head of state on November 28, but power was retained by
Endalkatchew and replaced him with Mikael Imru, a Shewan         Major Mengistu, who kept his post as first vice chairman of
aristocrat with a reputation as a liberal.                       the PMAC, with Major Atnafu as second vice chairman.
                                                                 Mengistu hereafter emerged as the leading force in the Derg
The Derg's agenda rapidly diverged from that of the              and took steps to protect and enlarge his power base.
reformers of the late imperial period. In early August, the      Preparations were made for a new offensive in Eritrea, and
revised constitution, which called for a constitutional          social and economic reform was addressed; the result was
monarchy, was rejected when it was forwarded for approval.       the promulgation on December 20 of the first socialist
Thereafter, the Derg worked to undermine the authority and       proclamation for Ethiopia.
legitimacy of the emperor, a policy that enjoyed much
public support. The Derg arrested the commander of the           In keeping with its declared socialist path, the Derg
Imperial Bodyguard, disbanded the emperor's governing            announced in March 1975 that all royal titles were revoked
councils, closed the private imperial exchequer, and             and that the proposed constitutional monarchy was to be
nationalized the imperial residence and the emperor's other      abandoned. In August Haile Selassie died under
landed and business holdings. By late August, the emperor        questionable circumstances and was secretly buried. One of
had been directly accused of covering up the Welo and            the last major links with the past was broken in February
Tigray famine of the early 1970s that allegedly had killed       1976, when the patriarch of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church,
100,000 to 200,000 people. After street demonstrations           Abuna Tewoflos, an imperial appointee, was deposed.
took place urging the emperor's arrest, the Derg formally
deposed Haile Selassie on September 12 and imprisoned            In April 1976, the Derg at last set forth its goals in greater
him. The emperor was too old to resist, and it is doubtful       detail in the Program for the National Democratic Revolution
whether he really understood what was happening around           (PNDR). As announced by Mengistu, these objectives
him. Three days later, the Armed Forces Coordinating             included progress toward socialism under the leadership of
Committee (i.e., the Derg) transformed itself into the           workers, peasants, the petite bourgeoisie, and all antifeudal
Provisional Military Administrative Council (PMAC) under the     and anti-imperialist forces. The Derg's ultimate aim was the
chairmanship of Lieutenant General Aman Mikael Andom             creation of a one-party system. To accomplish its goals, the
and proclaimed itself the nation's ruling body.                  Derg established an intermediary organ called the
                                                                 Provisional Office for Mass Organization Affairs (POMOA).
THE STRUGGLE FOR POWER, 1974-77                                  Designed to act as a civilian political bureau, POMOA was at
Although not a member of the Derg per se, General Aman           first in the hands of the All-Ethiopia Socialist Movement
had been associated with the Derg since July and had lent        (whose Amharic acronym was MEISON), headed by Haile
his good name to its efforts to reform the imperial regime.      Fida, the Derg's chief political adviser. Haile Fida, as
He was a well-known, popular commander and hero of a             opposed to other leftists who had formed the Ethiopian
war against Somalia in the 1960s. In accordance with the         People's Revolutionary Party (EPRP), had resourcefully
Derg's wishes, he now became head of state, chairman of          adopted the tactic of working with the military in the
the Council of Ministers, and minister of defense, in addition   expectation of directing the revolution from within
to being chairman of the PMAC. Despite his standing,
however, General Aman was almost immediately at odds             By late 1976, the Derg had undergone an internal
with a majority of the Derg's members on three major             reconfiguration as Mengistu's power came under growing
issues: the size of the Derg and his role within it, the         opposition and as Mengistu, Tafari, and Atnafu struggled for
Eritrean insurgency, and the fate of political prisoners.        supremacy. The instability of this arrangement was resolved
Aman claimed that the 120- member Derg was too large             in January and February of 1977, when a major shootout at
and too unwieldy to function efficiently as a governing body;    the Grand (Menelik's) Palace in Addis Ababa took place
as an Eritrean, he urged reconciliation with the insurgents      between supporters of Tafari and those of Mengistu, in
there; and he opposed the death penalty for former               which the latter emerged victorious. With the death of Tafari
government and military officials who had been arrested          and his supporters in the fighting, most internal opposition
since the revolution began.                                      within the Derg had been eliminated, and Mengistu
                                                                 proceeded with a reorganization of the Derg. This action left
The Derg immediately found itself under attack from civilian     Mengistu as the sole vice chairman, responsible for the
groups, especially student and labour groups who                 People's Militia, the urban defense squads, and the
demanded the formation of a "people's government" in             modernization of the armed forces - in other words, in
which various national organizations would be represented.       effective control of Ethiopia's government and military. In
These demands found support in the Derg among a faction          November 1977, Atnafu, Mengistu's last rival in the Derg,
composed mostly of army engineers and air force officers.        was eliminated, leaving Mengistu in undisputed command.
On October 7, the Derg arrested dissidents supporting the
                                                                  agitating for a broad-based democratic government run by
ETHIOPIA’S ROAD TO SOCIALISM                                      civilians, not by the military. In February 1977, the EPRP
Soon after taking power, the Derg promoted Ye-Itiopia             initiated terrorist attacks--known as the White Terror--
Hibretesebawinet (Ethiopian Socialism). The concept was           against Derg members and their supporters. This violence
embodied in slogans such as "self-reliance," "the dignity of      immediately claimed at least eight Derg members, plus
labour," and "the supremacy of the common good." These            numerous Derg supporters, and soon provoked a
slogans were devised to combat the widespread disdain of          government counteraction--the Red Terror. During the Red
manual labour and a deeply rooted concern with status. A          Terror, which lasted until late 1978, government security
central aspect of socialism was land reform. Although there       forces systematically hunted down and killed suspected
was common agreement on the need for land reform, the             EPRP members and their supporters, especially students.
Derg found little agreement on its application. Most              Mengistu and the Derg eventually won this latest struggle
proposals-- even those proffered by socialist countries--         for control of the Ethiopian revolution, at a cost to the EPRP
counselled moderation in order to maintain production. The        of thousands of its members and supporters imprisoned,
Derg, however, adopted a radical approach, with the Land          dead, or missing.
Reform Proclamation of March 1975, which nationalized all
rural land, abolished tenancy, and put peasants in charge of      Also slated for destruction was MEISON, proscribed in mid
enforcement. No family was to have a plot larger than ten         1978. In coordination with the government, MEISON had
hectares, and no one could employ farm workers. Farmers           organized the kebeles and the peasant associations but had
were expected to organize peasant associations, one for           begun to act independently, thus threatening Derg
every 800 hectares, which would be headed by executive            dominance of local governments throughout the country. In
committees responsible for enforcement of the new order.          response to the political vacuum that would be left as a
Implementation of these measures caused considerable              result of the purging of MEISON, the Derg in 1978 promoted
disruption of local administration in rural areas. In July        the union of several existing Marxist-Leninist organizations
1975, all urban land, rentable houses, and apartments were        into a single umbrella group, the Union of Ethiopian Marxist
also nationalized, with the 3 million urban residents             Leninist Organizations (whose Amharic acronym was
organized into urban dwellers' associations, or kebeles           EMALEDEH). The new organization's duty was similar to that
analogous in function to the rural peasant associations           of MEISON-- promoting control of Ethiopian socialism and
                                                                  obtaining support for government policies through various
Although the government took a radical approach to land           political activities. The creation of EMALEDEH symbolized
reform, it exercised some caution with respect to the             the victory of the Derg in finally consolidating power after
industrial and commercial sectors. In January and February        having overcome these challenges to its control of the
1975, the Derg nationalized all banks and insurance firms         Ethiopian revolution.
and seized control of practically every important company in
the country. However, retail trade and the wholesale and          WAR IN THE OGADEN AND THE TURN TO THE SOVIET
export-import sectors remained in private hands.                  UNION
                                                                  The year 1977 saw the emergence of the most serious
Although the Derg ordered national collective ownership of        external challenge to the revolutionary regime that had yet
land, the move was taken with little preparation and met          materialized. The roots of the conflict lay with Somali
with opposition in some areas, especially Gojam, Welo, and        irredentism and the desire of the Somali government of
Tigray. The Derg also lost much support from the country's        Muhammad Said Bare to annex the Ogaden area of Ethiopia.
left wing, which had been excluded from power and the             Somalia's instrument in this process was the Western
decision-making process. Students and teachers were               Somali Liberation Front (WSLF), a Somali guerrilla
alienated by the government's closure of the university in        organization, which by February 1977 had begun to take
Addis Ababa and all secondary schools in September 1975           advantage of the Derg's political problems as well as its
in the face of threatened strikes, as well as the forced          troubles in Eritrea to attack government positions
mobilization of students in the Development Through               throughout the Ogaden the Somali government provided
Cooperation Campaign (commonly referred to as zemecha)            supplies and logistics support to the WSLF. Through the first
under conditions of military discipline. The elimination of the   half of the year, the WSLF made steady gains, penetrating
Confederation of Ethiopian Labour Unions (CELU) in favour         and capturing large parts of the Ogaden from the Dire Dawa
of the government-controlled All-Ethiopia Trade Union             area southward to the Kenya border.
(AETU) in December 1975 further disillusioned the
revolution's early supporters. Numerous officials originally      The increasingly intense fighting culminated in a series of
associated with the revolution fled the country                   actions around Jijiga in September, at which time Ethiopia
                                                                  claimed that Somalia's regular troops, the Somali National
THE MENGITSU REGIME AND ITS IMPACT                                Army (SNA), were supporting the WSLF. In response, the
The transition from imperial to military rule was turbulent.      Somali government admitted giving "moral, material, and
In addition to increasing political discontent, which was         other support" to the WSLF. Following a mutiny of the
particularly intense in the late 1970s, the Derg faced            Ethiopian garrison at Jijiga, the town fell to the WSLF. The
powerful insurgencies and natural calamities throughout the       Mengistu regime, desperate for help, turned to the Soviet
1980s.                                                            Union, its ties to its former military supplier, the United
                                                                  States, having foundered in the spring over the Derg's poor
POLITICAL STRUGGLES WITH THE GOVERNMENT                           human rights record. The Soviet Union had been supplying
Following the establishment of his supremacy through the          equipment and some advisers for months. When the Soviet
elimination of Tafari Banti, Mengistu declared himself Derg       Union continued to aid Ethiopia as a way of gaining
chairman in February 1977 and set about consolidating his         influence in the country, Somalia, which until then had been
power. However, several internal and external threats             a Soviet client, responded by abrogating its Treaty of
prevented Mengistu from doing this. Various insurgent             Friendship and Cooperation with Moscow and by expelling all
groups posed the most serious threat to the Derg. The EPRP        Soviet advisers.
challenged the Derg's control of the revolution itself by
The Soviet turnaround immediately affected the course of
the war. Starting in late November, massive Soviet military      SOCIAL AND POLITICAL CHANGES
assistance began to pour into Ethiopia, with Cuban troops        Although Addis Ababa quickly developed a close relationship
deploying from Angola to assist the Ethiopian units. By the      with the communist world, the Soviet Union and its allies
end of the year, 17,000 Cubans had arrived and, with             had consistent difficulties working with Mengistu and the
Ethiopian army units, halted the WSLF momentum. On               Derg. These difficulties were largely the result of the Derg's
February 13, 1978, Mogadishu dispatched the SNA to assist        preoccupation with internal matters and the promotion of
the WSLF, but the Somali forces were driven back toward          Ethiopian variations on what Marxist-Leninist theoreticians
the border. After the Ethiopian army recapture of Jijiga in      regarded as preordained steps on the road to a socialist
early March, the Somali government decided to withdraw its       state. The Derg's status as a military government was
forces from the Ogaden, leaving the Ethiopian army in            another source of concern. Ethiopia's communist allies made
control of the region. However, in the process of eliminating    an issue of the need to create a civilian "vanguard party"
the WSLF threat, Addis Ababa had become a military client        that would rule a people's republic. In a move geared to
of Moscow and Havana, a situation that had significant           ensure continued communist support, the Derg formed the
international repercussions and that resulted in a major         Commission to Organize the Party of the Workers of
realignment of power in the Horn of Africa.                      Ethiopia (COPWE) in December 1979, with Mengistu as its
                                                                 chairman. At COPWE's second congress, in January 1983, it
ERITREAN AND TRIGRAYAN INSURGENCIES                              was announced that COPWE would be replaced by a genuine
After 1974, insurgencies appeared in various parts of the        communist party. Accordingly, the Workers' Party of
country, the most important of which were centred in             Ethiopia (WPE) was proclaimed on September 12.
Eritrea and Tigray. The Eritrean problem, inherited from
Haile Selassie's regime, was a matter of extensive debate        About the same time, work continued on a new constitution
within the Derg. It was a dispute over policy toward Eritrea     for the planned People‟s Republic. On February 1, 1987, the
that resulted in the death of the PMAC's first leader, General   proposed constitution, which had been submitted to the
Aman, an Eritrean, on November 23, 1974, so-called               public for popular debate and changes the prior year, was
"Bloody Saturday." Hereafter, the Derg decided to impose a       finally put to a vote. Although the central government
military settlement on the Eritrean Liberation Front (ELF)       claimed an 81 percent approval of the new constitution
and the Eritrean People's Liberation Front (EPLF). Attempts      (with modifications proposed by the public), the
to invade rebel-held Eritrea failed repeatedly, and by mid-      circumstances of its review and approval by the general
1978 the insurgent groups controlled most of the                 population were called into question. The task of publicizing
countryside but not major towns such as Keren, Mitsiwa,          the document had been entrusted to the kebeles and the
Aseb, and a few other places. Despite large commitments of       peasant associations--organizations that had a state
arms and training from communist countries, the Derg failed      security mission as well as local administrative duties.
to suppress the Eritrean rebellion.                              Observers noted that little commentary or dissent was
                                                                 possible under such circumstances. Additional criticism
By the end of 1976, insurgencies existed in all of the           included the charge that the proposed constitution was not
country's fourteen administrative regions (the provinces         designed to address or even understand Ethiopian needs; in
were officially changed to regions in 1974 after the             fact, many noted that the constitution was "almost an
revolution). In addition to the Eritrean secessionists, rebels   abridged translation of the Soviet Constitution of 1977"
were highly active in Tigray, where the Tigray People's
Liberation Front (TPLF), formed in 1975, was demanding           ETHIOPIA IN CRISIS: FAMINE AND ITS AFTERMATH -
social justice and self-determination for all Ethiopians. In     1984-88
the southern regions of Bale, Sidamo, and Arsi, the Oromo        Toward the end of the 1980s, several crises, including
Liberation Front (OLF) and the Somali Abo Liberation Front       famine, economic collapse, and military setbacks in Eritrea
(SALF), active since 1975, had gained control of parts of the    and Tigray, confronted the Derg. In addition, as democratic
countryside, and the WSLF was active in the Ogaden. Under        reform swept through the communist world, it became
Ali Mirah's leadership, the Afar Liberation Front (ALF) began    evident that Addis Ababa no longer could rely on its allies
armed operations in March 1975, and in 1976 it coordinated       for support.
some actions with the EPLF and the TPLF.
                                                                 FAMINE AND ECONOMIC COLLAPSE
Despite an influx of military aid from the Soviet Union and      Ethiopia had never recovered from the previous great
its allies after 1977, the government's counterinsurgency        famine of the early 1970s, which was the result of a drought
effort in Eritrea progressed haltingly. After initial            that affected most of the countries of the African Sahel. The
government successes in retaking territory around the            late 1970s again brought signs of intensifying drought. By
major towns and cities and along some of the principal           the early 1980s, large numbers of people in central Eritrea,
roads in 1978 and 1979, the conflict ebbed and flowed on         Tigray, Welo, and parts of Gonder and Shewa were
an almost yearly basis. Annual campaigns by the Ethiopian        beginning to feel the effects of renewed famine.
armed forces to dislodge the EPLF from positions around the
northern town of Nakfa failed repeatedly and proved costly       By mid-1984 it was evident that another drought and
to the government. Eritrean and Tigrayan insurgents began        resulting famine of major proportions had begun to affect
to cooperate, the EPLF providing training and equipment          large parts of northern Ethiopia. Just as evident was the
that helped build the TPLF into a full-fledged fighting force.   government's inability to provide relief. The almost total
Between 1982 and 1985, the EPLF and the Derg held a              failure of crops in the north was compounded by fighting in
series of talks to resolve the Eritrean conflict, but to no      and around Eritrea, which hindered the passage of relief
avail. By the end of 1987, dissident organizations in Eritrea    supplies. Although international relief organizations made a
and Tigray controlled at least 90 percent of both regions.       major effort to provide food to the affected areas, the
                                                                 persistence of drought and poor security conditions in the
                                                                 north resulted in continuing need as well as hazards for
                                                                 famine relief workers. In late 1985, another year of drought
was forecast, and by early 1986 the famine had spread to        control of Eritrea was limited to the Keren-Asmera-Mitsiwa
parts of the southern highlands, with an estimated 5.8          triangle and the port of Aseb to the southeast. The TPLF's
million people dependent on relief food. Exacerbating the       victories in Tigray ultimately led to its total conquest by the
problem in 1986 was locust and grasshopper plagues.             rebels and the expansion of the insurgency into Gonder,
                                                                Welo, and even parts of Shewa the following year.
The government's inability or unwillingness to deal with the
1984-85 famine provoked universal condemnation by the           THE PEOPLE’S DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF ETHIOPIA
international community. Even many supporters of the            On September 10, 1987, after thirteen years of military
Ethiopian regime opposed its policy of withholding food         rule, the nation officially became the People's Democratic
shipments to rebel areas. The combined effects of famine        Republic of Ethiopia (PDRE) under a new constitution
and internal war had by then put the nation's economy into      providing for a civilian government. The PMAC was
a state of collapse.                                            abolished, and in June of that year Ethiopians had elected
                                                                the National Shengo (National Assembly), a parliament.
The primary government response to the drought and              Despite these changes, members of the now-defunct Derg
famine was the decision to uproot large numbers of              still ran the government but with different titles. For
peasants who lived in the affected areas in the north and to    example, the National Shengo elected Mengistu to be the
resettle them in the southern part of the country. In 1985      country's first civilian president; he remained, however, the
and 1986, about 600,000 people were moved, many                 WPE's general secretary. Other high-ranking Derg and WPE
forcibly, from their home villages and farms by the military    members received similar posts in the new government,
and transported to various regions in the south. Many           including the Derg deputy chairman, Fikre-Selassie
peasants fled rather than allow themselves to be resettled;     Wogderes, who became Ethiopia's prime minister, and
many of those who were resettled sought later to return to      Fisseha Desta, WPE deputy general secretary, who became
their native regions. Several human rights organizations        the country's vice president.
claimed that tens of thousands of peasants died as a result
of forced resettlement                                          Despite outward appearances, little changed in the way the
                                                                country was actually run. Old Derg members still were in
Another government plan involved villagization, which was a     control, and the stated mission of the WPE allowed
response not only to the famine but also to the poor security   continued close supervision by the government over much
situation. Beginning in 1985, peasants were forced to move      of the urban population. Despite the granting of "autonomy"
their homesteads into planned villages, which were              to Eritrea, Aseb, Tigray, Dire Dawa, and the Ogaden, the
clustered around water, schools, medical services, and          1987 constitution was ambiguous on the question of self-
utility supply points to facilitate distribution of those       determination for national groups such as the Eritreans,
services. Many peasants fled rather than acquiesce in           except within the framework of the national government.
relocation, which in general proved highly unpopular.           And although the constitution contained provisions to
Additionally, the government in most cases failed to provide    protect the rights of citizens, the power of peasant
the promised services. Far from benefiting agricultural         associations and kebeles was left intact.
productivity, the program caused a decline in food
production. Although temporarily suspended in 1986,             CHANGES IN SOVIET POLICY AND NEW
villagization was subsequently resumed.                         INTERNATIONAL HORIZONS
                                                                The Soviet Union policies changed toward its allies among
GOVERNMENT DEFEATS IN ERITREA AND TIGRAY                        the developing countries in the late 1980s, changes that
In March 1988, the EPLF initiated one of its most successful    appeared likely to result in significant reductions in its
military campaigns by striking at Ethiopian army positions      hitherto extensive support of Ethiopia. By then it was
on the Nakfa front north of the town of Afabet, where the       evident that the Soviet-Ethiopian relationship had
Derg had established a base for a new attack against the        undergone a fundamental reorientation. The change was
insurgents. In two days of fighting, the Eritrean rebels        partly the result of the new directions in Soviet foreign
annihilated three Ethiopian army divisions, killing or          policy undertaken by Mikhail Gorbachev. But other
capturing at least 18,000 government troops and seizing         contributing factors were strong undercurrents of Soviet
large amounts of equipment, including armour and artillery.     disapproval of Ethiopia's conduct of its internal affairs and of
Subsequently, the town of Afabet, with its military stores,     Addis Ababa's inability to make effective use of the aid that
fell to the EPLF, which then threatened all remaining           Moscow sent. The implications of this changed policy for
Ethiopian military concentrations in northern Eritrea.          Ethiopia were likely to be profound, inasmuch as continued
                                                                high levels of military assistance were vital to the pursuit of
The Ethiopian army's defeat in Eritrea came after setbacks      Mengistu's military solution in Eritrea as well as to the fight
during the preceding week in Tigray. Using the same tactics     against other internal insurgencies.
employed by the EPLF, the TPLF pre-empted a pending
Ethiopian offensive in Tigray with a series of attacks on       ETHIOPIA ORTHODOX CHRISTIANITY
government positions there in early March. A government         John Markakis has remarked of Ethiopia that "the dominant
attack against central Tigray failed disastrously, with four    element in this culture and its major distinguishing feature
Ethiopian army divisions reportedly destroyed and most of       is the Christian religion." Yet almost all of the analysis of
their equipment captured. In early April, the TPLF took the     Orthodox Christianity as practiced by Ethiopians has focused
town of Adigrat in northern Tigray, cutting the main road       on the Amhara and Tigray. The meaning of that religion for
link between Addis Ababa and Eritrea.                           the Oromo and others is not clear. For some Oromo who
                                                                achieved significant political power in Amhara kingdoms in
The March 1988 defeats of the Ethiopian army were               the eighteenth century and after, adherence to Christianity
catastrophic in terms of their magnitude and crippling in       seemed to be motivated by nothing more than expediency.
their effect on government strategy in Eritrea and Tigray.
The capability of government forces in both regions             By the mid-twentieth century, some educated Amhara and
collapsed as a result. Subsequently, Ethiopian government       Tigray had developed scepticism, not so much of doctrine--
although that also occurred--as of the church's political and      In addition to standard holy days, most Christians observe
economic role. They had developed similar feelings toward          many saint's days. A man might give a small feast on his
the clergy, most of whom were poorly educated.                     personal saint's day. The local voluntary association (called
Nevertheless, the effects of the church's disestablishment         the maheber) connected with each church honours its
and of the continuing social upheaval and political                patron saint with a special service and a feast, two or three
repression impelled many Ethiopians to turn to religion for        times a year.
                                                                   Belief in the existence of active spirits--many malevolent,
FAITH AND PRACTICE                                                 some benevolent--is widespread among Ethiopians, whether
The faith and practice of most Orthodox Christians combine         Christian, Muslim, or pagan. The spirits called zar can be
elements from Monophysite Christianity as it has developed         male or female and have a variety of personality traits.
in Ethiopia over the centuries and from a non-Christian            Many peasants believe they can prevent misfortune by
heritage rejected by more educated church members but              propitiating the zar.
usually shared by the ordinary priest. According to
Monophysite doctrine, Christ is a divine aspect of the             The protective adbar spirits belong to the community rather
Trinitarian God. Broadly, the Christian elements are God (in       than to the individual or family. The female adbar is thought
Amharic, Egziabher), the angels, and the saints. A hierarchy       to protect the community from disease, misfortune, and
of angelic messengers and saints conveys the prayers of the        poverty, while the male adbar is said to prevent fighting,
faithful to God and carries out the divine will. When an           feuds, and war and to bring good harvests. People normally
Ethiopian Christian is in difficulty, he or she appeals to these   pay tribute to the adbars in the form of honey, grains, and
angels and saints as well as to God. In more formal and            butter.
regular rituals, priests communicate on behalf of the
community, and only priests may enter the inner sanctum of         Myths connected with the evil eye (buda) vary, but most
the usually circular or octagonal church where the ark             people believe that the power rests with members of lowly
(tabot) dedicated to the church's patron saint is housed. On       occupational groups who interact with Amhara communities
important religious holidays, the ark is carried on the head       but are not part of them. To prevent the effects of the evil
of a priest and escorted in procession outside the church.         eye, people wear amulets or invoke God's name. Because
The ark, not the church, is consecrated. Only those who feel       one can never be sure of the source of illness or misfortune,
pure, have fasted regularly, and have generally conducted          the peasant has recourse to wizards who can make
themselves properly may enter the middle ring to take              diagnoses and specify cures. Debteras also make amulets
communion. At many services, most parish members                   and charms designed to ward off satanic creatures.
remain in the outer ring, where debteras sing hymns and
dance.                                                             The belief system, Christian and other, of peasant and priest
                                                                   were consonant with the pre-Revolutionary social order in
Weekly services constitute only a small part of an Ethiopian       its stress on hierarchy and order. The long-range effects on
Orthodox Christian's religious observance. Several holy days       this belief system of a Marxist-Leninist regime that
require prolonged services, singing and dancing, and               ostensibly intended to destroy the old social order were
feasting. An important religious requirement, however, is          difficult to evaluate in mid-1991. Even though the regime
the keeping of fast days. Only the clergy and the very             introduced some change in the organization of the church
devout maintain the full schedule of fasts, comprising 250         and clergy, it was not likely that the regime had succeeded
days, but the laity is expected to fast 165 days per year,         in significantly modifying the beliefs of ordinary Christians.
including every Wednesday and Friday and the two months            END
that include Lent and the Easter season.

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