OPEN LETTER TO THE CHAIRPERSON OF THE AFRICAN UNION
Subject: Appeal for Support Regarding the Genocide Committed Against Ethiopia (more…)
Subject: Appeal for Support Regarding the Genocide Committed Against Ethiopia
3352 Broadway Blvd. Garland, TX 75043, U.S.A
July 13, 2009.
OPEN LETTER TO THE CHAIRPERSON OF THE AFRICAN UNION,
H.E. PRESIDENT MUAMMAR GADDAFI
Subject: Appeal for Support Regarding the Genocide Committed Against Ethiopia
Please allow us, Your Excellency, to express our utmost respect and appreciation of the Libyan government’s exemplary success in achieving an appropriate atonement, and compensation of US$5 billion by the Italian government for the Fascist crimes committed against Libya including the forced use of its citizens as Mussolini’s soldiers against a sister nation, namely, Ethiopia during 1935-41. The Libyan government’s success, under Your Excellency’s leadership, in ensuring that the Fascists eventually paid for their crimes. is a clear indication of the respect and dignity gained by Africa and, therefore, a source of pride and hope for all nations, particularly Ethiopia which suffered the crime of genocide perpetrated by Fascist Italy with the direct support of The Vatican during the above mentioned period.
We are writing this open letter to Your Excellency in your capacity as chairperson of the African Union to call on you to use your good offices in ensuring that other victim countries of the Fascists, especially Ethiopia, achieve, similar to Libya, the same type of atonement and compensation that you were able to gain for your nation. We are submitting this petition to you because we believe that, in your capacity as chairperson of the African Union, you do have an interest in the welfare of the whole of Africa, not merely that of Libya. It is also evident, in the context of Libya’s above stated success, that the advent of your role as chairperson of the African Union is of particularly fortuitous to all those countries and people who had suffered at the hands of the Fascists.
Your Excellency is aware that during 1935-41, Fascist Italy committed horrendous crimes against Ethiopia by using various weapons as well as poison gas sprayed on the country using numerous air planes resulting in the murder of 1 million people, the destruction of 525,000 homes and 2000 churches, the killing of 14 million animals, and serious environmental degradation. It is also particularly tragic that 30,000 Libyans were forced to participate in the Fascist crime against a sister African nation, Ethiopia.
In his book entitled: “My Life and Ethiopia’s Progress”, 1929 E.C., Emperor Haile Selassie I, God bless his soul, had stated:
“The picture of many thousands of soldiers as well as rural people including women and children who were burned to death by the poison gas used by the enemy is still etched in our mind.” (p. 244)
“Italian airplanes came in drones of 9, 15, and 18 to drop rains of poison gas on people, animals, rivers and streams as well as pastures.” (p. 255)
It is a fact of history that the above crime against humanity i.e. genocide was committed by Fascist Italy. What are tragic and little publicized are the facts that the Fascists perpetrated the atrocities against Ethiopia with the direct and complicit support as well as the blessing of the Vatican, and that the United Nations organization has yet to include the crime in its historic annals. The reason, mainly, was because, unlike the situation today, in 1947, when Italy was brought to book, much of Africa was still under a colonial oppression and Ethiopia had virtually no support from the western countries which tended to minimize the huge crimes committed by one of their own.
In his book entitled “Sylvia Pankhurst, Counsel for Ethiopia”, p. 222, Richard Pankhurst states:
“….the Foreign Office was opposed to the prosecution of Italians
for crimes committed in Ethiopia a decade or so earlier. This
opposition was in part due to racial prejudice against the punish-
ment of whites by blacks, and in part to a desire to underplay, crimes,
which had resulted in a “conquest” which Britain had officially
recognized. There was the additional fact that Marshal Badoglio,
whom Ethiopia regarded as the principal war criminal, had
surrendered Italy to the Allies, and was considered by the British
Government as exempt from prosecution.”
The Vatican’s complicity with the Italian Fascists is well documented. Among the many sources is the book entitled: “The Vatican in World Politics” (chapter 9) by the renowned historian, Avro Manhattan who states that the relationship between the Fascists and The Vatican kept improving to the extent that the Lateran Treaty between Pope Pius XI and Mussolini was signed in October 1928 according to which The Vatican was recognized as an independent sovereign state. The Fascists also provided a substantial amount of money to shore up the ailing bank serving The Vatican. The main reason for the symbiotic relationship between the Pope and the Fascist Duce was their mutual dislike for democracy, socialism, and human rights. Manhattan states:
“It was the alliance of these two men, Pius XI and Mussolini, that influenced so greatly the social and political pattern, not only of Italy, but also of the rest of Europe in the years between the two world wars.”
Mussolini’s main ally in his aggression against Ethiopia was, therefore, The Vatican’s Pope Pius XI. Manhattan states:
“Thus the Church became the religious weapon of the Fascist State; while the Fascist State became the secular arm of the Church.”
Therefore, when the Fascist Italian army managed to enter Ethiopia’s capital city, Addis Ababa, Pope Pius XI expressed his pleasure by stating:
“The triumphant joy of an entire, great and good people over a place which, it is hoped and intended, will be an effective contribution and prelude to the true place in Europe and the World.”
The Pope’s joy was expressed in a more cogent and graphic declaration by the Archbishop of Torano with the following words:
“The war against Ethiopia should be considered as a holy war, a crusade” (as Italian victory would) “open Ethiopia, a country of infidels and schismatics, to the expansion of the Catholic Faith.”
The Italian Fascists were defeated by Ethiopian patriots with British support and kicked out of the country in 1941. However, it is regrettable to state that 67 years later, the Vatican has still to apologize to the Ethiopian people for its complicity with the Fascists. The Fascist criminals who were personally responsible for the genocide against Ethiopia were never brought to justice. In 1947, the Italian government that was still manned by some former Fascists provided a highly inadequate, miniscule amount of 6 million sterling pounds and, therefore, the Ethiopian people are still awaiting the payment of an appropriate compensation which should be commensurate with the crime of genocide and destruction that was committed against Ethiopia.
We wish to bring to Your Excellency’s attention that our organization, namely, the Global Alliance for Justice – The Ethiopian Cause, www.globalallianceforethiopia.org has launched a global campaign calling on the international community, through a petition, to help the Ethiopian people in achieving a Vatican apology for its complicity with the Fascists in the war crimes committed in Ethiopia. The petition has so far been signed by 1448 people (as of July 17, 2009) residing in over 40 countries throughout the world. The Alliance has also written repeatedly to His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI calling for his apology to the Ethiopian people similar to the one he had expressed to the Jewish people. His Holiness has so far not responded.
We are sure that Your Excellency is aware that the Vatican has been expressing its apology repeatedly to the Jewish people for no other reason than the fact that it was silent during the Nazi holocaust. Why it has resisted expressing its apology to the Ethiopian people continues to be puzzling and ironic especially as the Vatican was directly complicit in the genocide perpetrated by the Fascists against Ethiopia. Could it be because Ethiopia is an African nation?
We submit this respectful appeal to Your Excellency to use your good office as the chairperson of the African Union, to call upon the Vatican to tender its apology to the Ethiopian people for its role in the Fascist crime; the Italian government to pay a due compensation to Ethiopia, as well as the United Nations to include the Fascist genocide in Ethiopia in its records.
With the assurances of our highest respect,
Global Alliance for Justice – The Ethiopia Cause