Meet Marcus Garvey: The Man Whose Crusade United Africans Worldwide

He is one of the greatest figures of African liberation and the custodial hero of Pan-Africanism.

Marcus Mosiah Garvey, born August 17th of 1887 at St Ann’s Bay, Jamaica, was one of two surviving children, out of 11 children born to his parents. His father who was a literate Christian passed on the value of reading to him and as early as 14, he already worked at a printing press and had already developed the passion to fight injustice and inequality.

 In 1907, Marcus Garvey took part in the first strikes of the printing press union, got blacklisted and dismissed. Garvey left to work at Central America and South America, only to realize the dehumanizing state that Blacks and those from the West Indies were subjected to.

In this regard, he said “The Negro is marginalized everywhere and forcibly maintained at the bottom of the social ladder of humanity, as a result of the color of their skin. Without the least consideration, neither for his human qualities or what could be his intelligence or his gifts. Nowhere does the Negro enjoy the least human dignity, everywhere, he is a serf, a slave.”

Marcus Garvey was spurred by his discovery, organized Black workers, and spoke up through disputant Newspaper publications. This would later lead to his extradition to Jamaica by Costa Rican authorities, he, however, continued his activism.

Marcus Garvey | Source: Wikipedia

Marcus would later leave for London, where he thought he would have more impact, speaking on the streets. He was motivated by a book; “Up from Slavery”, written by African-American activist, Booker .T. Washington. He became sure that what the black world needed was scientific and economic emancipation.

Garvey became burdened with the situation that Africans were subjected to by the colonizers in Africa. This was as a result of his contact with some Africans who were in the Black Continent. He studied law and philosophy and stayed under the teachings of Black Egyptian, Dusé Ali Muhammad who taught him the basics of African history. Under Dusé’s tutelage, Garvey would learn that Egypt and Carthage civilizations were Black civilizations, and about how Africa governed and ruled the world for 3,000 years.

Armed with this knowledge, and African historical consciousness, new ideas were born. This gave rise to the realization of the UNIA-ACL, Universal Association for the Advancement of the Negro League of the African Community.

The Mission: To liberate Africa from colonialism and to make the continent a political, economic, industrial, military empire, and The Promised Land for all Africans in the world.

Motto: One aim, One God, One destiny.

It is in the United States that he empowered the UNIA after discovering that the United States was such a country of contrast as it had the fiercest racist violence, but the most motivated and progressive Blacks. Garvey traveled 38 states, delivering with great charisma, really motivating speeches. He attracted supporters and laid the foundation for the UNIA in the Black neighborhood of Harlem, New York.

The mission of Africa regaining its position as the world’s civilizer, spread like wide fire, in 1921, UNIA, had an impressive 6 million membership and almost 1,100 chapters in 40 countries. It’s News publications were distributed all over the Americas in different languages.

In the early editorials of the Negros World, Garvey is quoted to have said: “Africa must be liberated and we must all dedicate our lives, our energy, and our blood to this sacred cause.”

Garvey founded the Black Star Shipping Line, and with the support of Black investors, including the poorest, he had a contribution of $10 million, and in no time bought 3 cargo ships, that moved goods. The other objective was to convey Blacks back to Africa. With his ships, he moved 4,000 tonnes of construction materials and expatriates, to Liberia where he wanted to build a city that will rival Western megacities. Wherever their ship alighted, they were cheered by Blacks.

In 1919, Garvey founded the Negro Factories Corporation, this gave rise to the creation of chains of grocery stores, restaurants, fashion stores, garment workshops, hat stores, black doll factories, dyeing stores, laundries, hotels, and publishing houses to mention but a few. Between 1920 and 1924, the UNIA had founded many subsidiaries and schools, all run by Blacks, and most likely employed thousands of people.

Garvey founded a United African State, and he was the elected president. His yearly conventions gathered African delegates from Europe, America, and Africa. In 1920, he created the Pan African flag with colors red, black green, symbolizing The African blood, sacrificed for her liberation, the African skin color and the natural resources of Africa respectively.

There was a war between two great African legends. They both wanted the emancipation of Blacks all over the world, but they disagreed on methods and ideologies. W.E.B Du Bois, who was an African-American Bourgeois elite of light skin was the greatest Pan-African leader before Garvey, he was of the opinion that Blacks be integrated into white communities and treated equally, while Garvey who was a self-informed dark-skinned man, was of the opinion that Blacks be separated from whites, and didn’t mind if it led to a conflict.

Garvey was amazed at how many whites supported W.E.B Du Bois in his Black lobby NAACP.

Du Bois totally disagreed with Booker .T. Washington’s submission policy which formed Garvey’s thought. They called each other the greatest threats to the African race. While W.E.B Du Bois condemned the Ku Klux Klan, a white racist organization who supported Marcus because they believed he was the only one who would make America fully white again, Marcus praised them for frankly showing their hatred for blacks unlike other whites who he believed were hypocrites. The Ku Klux Klan members even invested in the Black Star Line to show their support.

Soon enough, the Black Star Line was faced with attacks both from the US authorities and from the European colonizers who occupied Africa and considered Marcus Garvey a threat and an enemy. The shipping line began to fall. Marcus was framed by the Europeans and arrested for a crime he was innocent of, to be imprisoned for 5 years but ended up spending 3 years instead, as the international mobilization protested for his freedom.

After Marcus’ release, he resumed his fight without relenting in spite of the weak condition he met the UNIA. His impact was felt the most in Atlanta. W.E.B. Du Bois, in his fight for African independence, would later join in the campaign “Garvey must go”, this was to ensure that Garvey left the US for good. Marcus Garvey in December 1927 was banished from the US and deported to Jamaica.

Marcus Garvey, undeterred, continued his activism in Jamaica. He created the PPP, a political party, considered as the first modern political party in Jamaica, continued to head the UNIA despite oppositions, funded the West African Student Union, WASU, supported Ethiopia during the Italian occupation, supported the West Indies and chaired the UNIA congress in Toronto 1937. The renowned activist passed on in 1940, after a stroke. He was 53, and unfortunately never saw his beloved Africa.

Marcus Garvey inspired the likes of Kwame Nkrumah, considered as the greatest figure of African Independence’, whose passion drawn from Garveyism as a student in the United State, gave rise to the founding of a United Africa, which turned out the African Union of today.  He inspired Malcolm X whose parents Earl and Louise campaigned for Garvey when he was alive, and would later pay tribute to Marcus Garvey for impacting Carribean independence.

He also inspired Nnamdi Azikiwe, the first president of Nigeria and acclaimed heir to Garveyism and Jomo Kenyatta, first president of Kenya who participated in the 1945 first conferences launched by W.E.B Du Bois and Garvey’s widow, Amy Jacques Garvey for the effective fight for the independence of Africa.

He inspired Zimbabwean nationalist, Julius Nyerere, Malawi’s first president, and Tanzania’s first president; Banda and the advocates of the Black cause in South Africa.

He remains a voice in the history of Africa’s fight for liberty.

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2 comments

  1. Garvey…Freedom Fighter, Prophet, or Stumbling block?
    Published: May 15, 20169:32 amUpdated: 9:48 amAuthor theCaribbeanCurrent
    Garvey…Freedom Fighter, Prophet, or Stumbling block?
    In the three or four weeks leading up to President Obama’s recent visit to Jamaica (April 8-9, 2015), different interest groups contemplated various appeals to ‘the most powerful man in the world’, with a view to advancing their most fundamental concerns at this time, in an opportunity, not only to bring same to his attention, but also to take advantage of the bullish attention being paid to the activities surrounding his visit, to gain much indirect media coverage of their realities, coverage that may be so very difficult to achieve under normal circumstances. The media, in all of this scenario, benefits from the glut supply of programme substance matters, and would be expected to prioritize according to their perspective of importance.

    There was much talk in all the media here, and a proposal, around an appeal to the President to have Marcus Mosiah Garvey exonerated from his criminal record/charges in the U.S. In truth, this particular appeal would have been popularly anticipated, given Marcus Garvey’s almost messianic status in Jamaica, and the leadership of both political parties, the ruling PNP and opposition JLP, lost little time announcing their game plan to ‘ride’ the popular sentiment.

    Strong Pan-Africanist and Rastafari focus, activities, and information are best served in Jamaica from behind three powerful microphones, from which Kabu Ma’at Kheru’ (‘Running African’ – IRIE FM), Mutabaruka (‘The Cutting Edge’ & ‘Steppin’ Razor’ – IRIE FM) and Bongo Jerry Small (‘Straight Up’ – NEWS TALK 93FM) operate, and, strong Garveyites as they are, they gave full airing to discussions regarding this appeal, which had not been sent to Mr. Obama, but was awaiting his arrival in the island.

    There was another appeal, on behalf of the long oppressed African majority population (appx. 93%), the indigenous peoples of Jamaica, for the President to see how he could assist them to recover their rights and definition achieved through eighty years of warfare, and an unbreakable Blood Treaty signed with Britain in 1739. This appeal, entitled ‘Republic of Kasambu in JamaicaOpen Appeal to President Obama’ along with two other articles entitled ‘The Rastaman’s Case for GanjaA Divine One’, and ‘The Jamaican Akan Root’ by Queen Nanny’s great-great-great grandniece and Maroon Secretary of State, Dr. Christina Sinclair, were all published in the Modern Ghana newspaper on March 25th, March 8th, and April 3rd respectively. Although these were circulated to almost all media in Jamaica, including all our Garveyite brothers and sisters, the President came and left the island with not a single media practitioner making any specific reference to any of these articles; and, thus far, they still remain under muzzle in Jamaica.

    Last year, a planned simultaneous launching of the book ‘The Testament of RastafariUnlocking the KJV’ and the CD album ‘History of the World’ both by Ras Mandito, set for July 23, 2015 (H.I.M. Haile Selassie I’s earthstrong), had to be completely cancelled, having received zero response from where it was most expected on radio, after they had been advised in February, and had been sent the book in April/May. Our brother Bongo Jerry Small found ‘small’ reason to deny a request for a single from the CD called ‘Haile H.I.M.’ to be played on H.I.M.’s earthstrong. The great, underlying reason for all this, is that our Garveyite brothers & sisters were so overwhelmingly consumed in giving honour to Marcus Garvey (the people’s ‘HERO’, as in ‘Barabbas’) in the 100-year anniversary of the U.N.I.A., that they could not find capacity for any of the same to H.I.M. Haile Selassie I (the people’s ‘MESSIAH’, as in Ye’sus the Christ).

    From our perspective, it is a sad day indeed, when, in an effort to defend honour for Marcus Garvey, the people’s gut-cry for justice, and the real truth about ourselves and our journey are being inauspiciously suppressed by our Garveyite friends. It is a sign that the time has come for us to seriously, dispassionately, objectively and prophetically examine the story of Marcus Garvey, to seek to determine whether he was our freedom fighter, prophet, or the ‘stumbling block in the way of a people and their God’.

    First, we must underscore the fact that, as a brilliant mind, master orator, motivator and expounder of ‘the Queen’s English’, Marcus Mosiah Garvey can hardly be compared with anyone in the modern era. Having associated with the printing business and the ownership of newspapers from his years as a teenager, he was very conscious of the role of propaganda in any organization, and was an instinctive genius of political psychology.

    Throughout most of my life, I’ve never possessed a large chest, but it was always pumped with ‘the philosophies and opinions of Marcus Garvey’. These gave me the inspirational strength to take on all life challenges, and fed into my self identity as a member of the great African race. Believe me, I perfectly ‘overstand’ and forgive our Garveyite brothers & sisters for their inauspicious deeds occasioned in their attempt to protect and enforce honour to ”the people’s HERO’.

    However, my people, with the advent of the internet and advanced research technology, ‘all the books are being opened’ in this time, and ‘what was hidden from the wise (old) and prudent, is being revealed to babes and sucklings’! It seems like we’ve come full circle, in that the LAW of the Almighty which came to us on a stone tablet carried by Moses, can now be accessed on a ‘tablet’, even by a young child. Many things that were previously done in the ‘darkness’ are now being brought to ‘light’. Many of Jamaica’s veteran recording artistes, for example, have been able to uncover previous mis-registration and misrepresentation of their intellectual property via the new technology, and have been able to make claims and recover royalties long overdue to them and/or their beneficiaries.

    From relatively early on in Marcus Garvey & the U.N.I.A.’s promotional foray into the U.S., great concerns over the tangibility of his ‘Back to Africa’ initiative, and around his personal trustworthiness, were being expressed by highly respected civil rights leaders, including W.E.B. DuBois and Robert Bagnall. Garvey seemed to possess the ability to establish businesses at the drop of a hat; but then, he also seemed to close them just as quickly.

    These concerns and criticisms, as well as Marcus Garvey’s legal problems, conviction, incarceration and deportation from the U.S. have usually been brushed aside as expressions of acute jealousy from the civil rights leaders, and attempts by the U.S. Government and others to sabotage his mission. It should have at least raised the sensible question, as to why friction between the U.N.I.A. and the Civil Rights Movement in the U.S. could have taken so much away from their combined power potential to advance the cause of the poor, oppressed and under-privileged African-Americans.

    While the natural hounding and inordinate attention of a J. Edgar Hoover, the CIA and others creating challenges for Garvey is easily understood, it is a fact that many of Garvey’s speeches and court testimonies regarding the activities of the U.N.I.A. and his ‘Black Star Line’ have been sitting in libraries all over the U.S. for years, while research can now, not only accurately present these speeches and testimonies, but also simultaneously provide the then existing facts and figures to confirm their veracity. This would have been virtually impossible at the time those speeches and/or testimonies were made by Garvey.

    For example, how much of the following article by Robert Bagnall of the N.A.A.C.P. are we prepared to believe, and what extent of it are we ready to totally disregard?

    Robert Bagnall on ‘The Madness of Marcus Garvey’
    After fighting World War I, ostensibly to defend democracy and the right of self-determination, thousands of African-American soldiers returned home to face intensified discrimination, segregation, and racial violence. Drawing on this frustration, Marcus Garvey attracted thousands of disillusioned black working-class and lower middle-class followers to his Universal Negro Improvement Association (UNIA). The UNIA, committed to notions of racial purity and separatism, insisted that salvation for African Americans meant building an autonomous, black-led nation in Africa.

    As Garvey’s influence in the black community grew, so too did the voices of his many critics. Integrationists such as W. E. B. Du Bois and Robert Bagnall, both of the NAACP, worried that the UNIA leader was exploiting black disillusionment for personal gain. Moreover, they objected to the UNIA’s call for racial separatism, and in this 1923 article Bagnall accused Garvey of ‘madness.’

    History tells the stories of a number of notable madmen who played quite a part for evil in their day. Nero, Caligula, Alexander are notorious instances. Literature furnishes us with a number of cases of madmen who thought themselves destined to do great things. The most striking of such characters is Don Quixote. This mad Knight tilted at wind-mills and thought them to be dragons and confused flocks of sheep with damsels in distress. The world has laughed at Don Quixote, but this old mad Knight was comparatively harmless. As mad as Don Quixote, the much advertised Negro demagogue Marcus Garvey appears to be, but is by no means harmless.

    The following is a pen picture of this notorious character which those who know him say is an accurate likeness:

    A Jamaican Negro of unmixed stock, stock, squat, stocky, fat and sleek, with protruding jaws, and heavy jowls, small bright pig-like eyes and rather bull-dog-like face. Boastful, egotistic, tyrannical, intolerant, cunning, shifty, smooth and suave, avaricious; as adroit as a fencer in changing front, as adept as a cuttle-fish in beclouding an issue he cannot meet, prolix to the ‘nth degree in devising new schemes to gain the money of poor ignorant Negroes; gifted at self-advertisement, without shame in self-laudation, promising ever, but never fulfilling, without regard for veracity, a lover of pomp and tawdry finery and garish display, a bully with his own folk but servile in the presence of the [Ku Klux] Klan, a sheer opportunist and a demagogic charlatan.

    Until recent years many layman supposed that a madman was violently irrational at all times and in all things. We now know that an insane man may be seemingly perfectly sane in many ways and at many times; his insanity being revealed only when certain choices, decisions and acts are presented to him. Often his insanity is confined to his reactions to certain departments of life. Our asylums are filled with individuals who can talk lucidly, intelligently, and sanely on many questions, but who will reveal their condition to you by suddenly, calmly and assuredly announcing that they are Napoleon, or Caesar, or a mighty king, general or magnate.

    When Garvey was found guilty at a recent trial, [Superior Court] Judge [Jacob] Panken of New York excoriated him, ending with these words”There is a form of paranoia which manifests itself in believing oneself to be a great man.’ In this he infers that Garvey is afflicted with this form of insanity.

    Is Garvey a Paranoiac?
    We may seriously ask’is not Marcus Garvey a paranoiac? He certainly manifests many of the characteristic symptoms of this form of insanity. It is hard to understand many of the man’s actions except on the assumption that he is insane’that he is a paranoiac. Let us examine the symptoms of paranoia and see how Garvey manifests them.

    A paranoiac is afflicted with Egomania. His world is interpreted in terms of self. The first person of the personal pronoun is ever on his lips. One hears from him a succession of I, Me. The world revolves around him.

    Read the Negro World. See how its pages are thick with the words ‘I, Marcus Garvey’ in every issue. See the self-laudation and egoism manifested there. Listen to Marcus Garvey as he speaks. Then you will think that the description I gave above of a paranoiac is one of Garvey. No sane man would be so gross in self-laudation as Garvey.

    A paranoiac has delusions of grandeur. He thinks himself great.

    False Imagination
    The paranoiac will imagine himself a great leader or ruler or wonderfully gifted in some art; a genius. He thinks of himself always in the superlative. All others dwindle in comparison. He imagines that he has done great things. He craves acknowledgment of this from others. He has lost all sense of perspective. He can never receive enough fawning and flattery. Marcus Garvey when a soap boxer years ago in New York advertised himself as ‘the world’s greatest orator.’ This title he still proclaims. He compares himself boastingly with [black intellectual W. E. B.] Du Bois, [black writer] James Weldon Johnson and others’claiming far greater attainments with nothing to substantiate his claims. He makes a mockery of the solid accomplishments of these gentlemen. He regards himself as an empire-builder, a divinely inspired leader of 400,000,000 Negroes (although no such number exists in the world).

    He imagines miserable failures to be great successes and a credit to him. He confesses the loss of nearly a million dollars of poor people’s money and that there is nothing left but debts. He confesses the utter loss of every vessel of his, ‘Black Star Line,’ and then boasts of the success of his shipping line. In one breath he says that all three of his ships are gone; that there is nothing left out of nearly $1,000,000 but debts. In another breath he states that ‘if it hadn’t been for our enemies, we would now have twenty vessels instead of three.’ He still seems under the delusion that he has three. He has a court reception, divides Africa in which he or his movement hasn’t one foot of ground into duchies and makes ‘knights’ and ‘ladies’ and ‘dukes.’ Those presented to him must bend the knee before him. Arrayed in royal garb, he and his court assemble on an elevated dais while the common people are below, kept away from him by armed guards. Here is clearly a case of delusions of grandeur. Could a symptom be more characteristic?

    The third symptom of a paranoiac is delusions as to fact. He suffers from exaggerated, distorted, perverted views of things. A paranoiac imagines an emaciated figure to be hale and sturdy and vice versa. He sees three people as a great crowd. Observe this trait in Garvey.

    Marcus Garvey testified in court that the Yarmouth [a Black Star Line ship] made three trips in three years, losing on one of these from two hundred and fifty thousand to three hundred thousand dollars ($250,000 to $300,000) and on another trip $75,000. Luc Dorsinville, the Haitian agent of the line states that on another voyage the Yarmouth took three months to go from New York to Cuba, Haiti and Jamaica. The trip, he states, cost between $20,000 and $30,000 without enough cargo to pay half of that. Passengers booked were left waiting and $30,000 worth of cargo awaiting shipment was left on the dock in Haiti.

    In spite of all this, Garvey in the Negro World of July 26, 1920, giving a report, states no losses, whatsoever on his shipping lines.

    In the Negro World of March 5, 1921, he says: ‘Nothing engineered by Negroes within the last 500 years has been as big or as stupendous as the Black Star Line. Today we control three quarters of a million dollars (not on mere paper but in property value) and money that can be realized in twenty-four hours if the stockholders desire that their money be refunded to them. We can sell out the property of the Black Star Line and realize every nickel.’

    Less than eight months afterwards it was revealed that the line had nothing[,] that everything was gone.

    He states that his organization has 4,500,000 members and is all over the world. An analysis of his financial report of 1921 reveals that he has not 20,000 dues paying members, and that his paying membership is much smaller than the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.

    He stated that 150,000 delegates would attend his convention. No more than 200 delegates were present as revealed by a careful analysis of the vote, day by day as given in the Negro World, his organ. Is it not clear that fact and fancy are mixed and twisted in Garvey’s mind?

    Unduly Suspicious
    A paranoiac is unduly suspicious. He suffers from the delusion of persecution. He is always looking for treachery. He imagines someone is always trying to harm him.

    Garvey’s speeches are shot through with statements showing that the above is his frame of mind. He is continually talking of conspiracies and plots. His delusion is that he is the victim of persecution. Listen to these utterances of his and see if they are not the characteristic utterances of a paranoiac.

    In the Negro World of January 21, 1921”All the troubles we have had on our ships have been caused because men were paid to make this trouble by certain organizations calling themselves Negro Advancement Associations. They paid men to dismantle our machinery and otherwise damage it so as to bring about the downfall of the movement.’

    In the Negro World of May 13, [1921,] he describes what is clearly a delusion of a great conspiracy. He says: ‘Millions of dollars were expended in the shipping industries to boycott and put out of existence the Black Star Line.’ He further says, ‘Bolshevists are paying for attacks on the line.’ (We wonder, in his insane delusions, how he gets capitalists and Bolshevists all against him.)

    He continually changes his cabinet group. He finds traitors all about him. Everybody he imagines is his enemy. He brooks no criticism. He tolerates no adverse opinion.

    ‘Castles in Spain’
    Another symptom of paranoia is that the victim imagines that when he desires a thing to be, it has come to pass. ‘Castles in Spain’ to him are stone and mortar castles here. There is no clear differentiation between the ideal and the actual.

    So Garvey sees himself president of the Republic of Africa, sees his government established. Year before last, at his convention, he promised that ninety days afterwards, he would have embassies at the court of St. James, in Paris, Petrograd, Rome, etc.

    He has no conception of the gulf of difficulties between a plan and its fulfillment.

    And in paranoia these delusions are fixed. No circumstances, logic or arguments can change them. So it is with Marcus Garvey.

    There is much reason to believe that if Marcus Garvey were examined by alienists, he would be pronounced insane’a paranoiac.

    If he is not insane, he is a demagogic charlatan, but the probability is that the man is insane. Certainly the movement is insane, whether Garvey is or not.

    When, in the middle of the Mussolini-led invasion of his country, while being in exile in London and making urgent mitigation to ensure that the Collective Security Treaty of the League of Nations be adhered to, H.I.M. Haile Selassie I was ‘summoned’ to a hastily arranged Pan-Africanist meeting by Marcus Garvey who himself had hastily travelled from New York when he had learnt of the Emperor’s presence in London. But, to the bitter disappointment of Garvey, the Emperor declined on account of inconvenience, and Garvey used that occasion in 1937 to unleash one of the most virulent, lying and disrespectful tirades against a Head of State in his darkest hour. In it he displayed a ‘legion’ of evil spirits which definitely disqualifies him from any consideration as ‘the fore-runner prophet for Rastafari’. This disqualification should also have been confirmed before, as Garvey, a devout Catholic, had lambasted the use of ganja in a seriously misguided and grossly inaccurate editorial entitled ‘The Dangerous Weed’ in his New Jamaican newspaper of August 13, 1932.This would have been the same Marcus Garvey who, despite advertising his plan of monumental logistical considerations to repatriate hundreds of thousands of Africans from all the countries of the Diaspora from 1914, apart from exchanging pleasantries, had sought no effective collaboration with the Ethiopian throne, had not set foot on the Continent, and had no MOU with even a few African Heads of State. One is tempted to think that, in 1937, the ‘world’s most elaborate scam’ really needed the photo-op with the Emperor to ramp up the waning faith in Garvey & the U.N.I.A. That speech, which became an editorial of his newspaper, The Black Man, is hereby reproduced for your examination as follows:

    ‘THE FAILURE OF HAILE SELASSIE AS EMPEROR’ – Marcus Garvey
    ‘When the facts of history are written, Haile Selassie of Abyssinia will go down as a great coward who ran away from his country to save his skin, and left the millions of his countrymen to struggle through a terrible war that he brought upon them because of his political ignorance and his racial disloyalty.

    It is a pity that a man of the limited intellectual calibre and weak political character like Haile Selassie, became Emperor of Abyssinia at so crucial a time in the political history of the world. Unfortunately, Abyssinia lost the controlling influence of a political personality of patriotic racial character like the late Menelik, whose loyalty to his race and devotion to his country excelled all his other qualities, to the extent that he was able to use that very strength to continuously safeguard the interests of the Ethiopian Empire. What he did so well to preserve, a cringing, white slave hero worshipper, visionless and disloyal to his country, threw away. This is the impression the serious minded political student forms of the conduct of the ex-Emperor of Abyssinia.

    EVERY NEGRO ASHAMED
    Every Negro who is proud of his race must be ashamed of the way in which Haile Selassie surrendered himself to the white wolves of Europe. These statements may be considered very severe, and in fact, they are. We could have been otherwise apologetic and sympathetic, but that would have been only if we were dealing with a Coptic Priest or a Religious Monk and not a[n] Emperor who held and presided over the political trust of twelve million people of his own country, and the political destiny of the entire Negro race. This little misguided Emperor could not realise that he held in his hands the political trust of the hundreds of millions of Negroes of the world, men and women, who were looking up toward the firm establishment of political sovereignty, and that Ethiopia, like Liberia and Haiti were to them prizes of glory to be perpetuated and strengthened in the maintenance of the dignity of that black race that other men have claimed to be incompetent, inferior and unworthy, which every black man must disprove.

    LOOKED WITH HOPE
    When the war started in Abyssinia all Negro nationalists looked with hope to Haile Selassie. They spoke for him, they prayed for him, they sung for him, they did everything to hold up his hands, as Aaron did for Moses; but whilst the Negro peoples of the world were praying for the success of Abyssinia this little Emperor was undermining the fabric of his own kingdom by playing the fool with white men, having them advising him[,] having them telling him what to do, how to surrender, how to call off the successful thrusts of his Rases against the Italian invaders. Yes, they were telling him how to prepare his flight, and like an imbecilic child he followed every advice and then ultimately ran away from his country to England, leaving his people to be massacred by the Italians, and leaving the serious white world to laugh at every Negro and repeat the charge and snare – “he is incompetent,” “we told you so.” Indeed Haile Selassie has proved the incompetence of the Negro for political authority, but thank God there are Negroes who realise that Haile Selassie did not represent the truest qualities of the Negro race. How could he, when he wanted to play white? how could he, when he surrounded himself with white influence? how could he, when in a modem world, and in a progressive civilization, he preferred a slave State of black men than a free democratic country where the black citizens could rise to the same opportunities as white citizens in their democracies?

    TELL THE TRUTH
    The truth must be told so that the white world will realise that it was not the pride of the Negro that surrendered in Abyssinia. It was the disloyalty of a single man who was too silly to take pride in his race, who played such a game as to disgrace the political integrity of a noble people. The Negroes of Abyssinia and of the world are satisfied however that Abyssinia was not conquered by Italy and the European forces of Mussolini. Abyssinia was only conquered by the black levies of Italy. The Askaris have really been the victors in Abyssinia. [Rodolfo] Graziani only marched into Addis Ababa after he had made sure of the advanced guard of the Askaris. Every battle that the Italians won in Abyssinia resulted from the advanced charge of the Askaris. It was black men fighting black men, and this was made possible in Abyssinia because the regime of Haile Selassie had given a bad taste to the mouth, not only of the blacks of Abyssinia but of those of the surrounding territories. They felt that they had a cause against the Amharic white loving Emperor who liked to chain and flog black men, and whose brutality to them gave Mussolini the cause to fool the world that he was bestowing a blessing upon the people of Abyssinia by freeing them.

    NO SLAVES
    It was a piece of impertinence to suggest that black men should be held as slaves. We must admit that we glorified Haile Selassie when the war started, fought his battles to win international support, but we ever felt deep down in our hearts that he was a slave master. We had hoped that if Abyssinia had won that we would have forced the Government of Abyssinia to free the black whom they held as slaves. We would have preferred this than seeing the country taken by Mussolini or any European power; but now that the country is temporarily lost and the Emperor has cowardly exiled himself, the truth must be told.

    WHAT RIGHT HAS HE?
    The future freedom of Abyssinia must be built upon the highest principles of democracy. That is why it is preferable for the Abyssinian Negroes and the Negroes of the world to work for the restoration and freedom of the country without the assistance of Haile Selassie, because at best he is but a slave master. The Negroes of the Western World whose forefathers suffered for three hundred years under the terrors of slavery ought to be able to appreciate what freedom means. Surely they cannot feel justified in supporting any system that would hold their brothers in slavery in another country whilst they are enjoying the benefits of freedom elsewhere. The Africans who are free can also appreciate the position of slaves in Abyssinia. What right has the Emperor to keep slaves when all the democratic sections of the world were free, when men had the right to live, to develop, to expand, to enjoy all the benefits of human liberty[?]

    The Emperor who has been exiled in Europe must have seen the civilization of Europe. In England where he lives he sees that men are not flogged and chained and kicked because of their colour or because of their condition, but where true human liberty guarantees to every man the happiest pursuit he can bring to himself. It has been reported that he is leaving England for Syria, where a large number of Abyssinian refugees are living. There is an interpretation that the decision to leave England and to live among “his people?” in Syria is to perpetuate his divine majesty in the presence of that king worship that he doesn’t get in England, where men look at others as equals and not as masters by divine right. In truth, the Emperor is out of place in democratic England. He wants to be once more in the environment of the feudal Monarch who looks down upon his slaves and serfs with contempt. Except he changes the attitude of thinking himself better than the Negro who constitutes the larger number of Ethiopia and profit by the experience he has gained, he should not be a fit person to be in authority in the very country in which he was born. After all, Haile Selassie is just an ordinary man like any other human being. What right has he to hold men as slaves? It is only the misfortune of the slaves that causes him to be a slave master. Negroes who have the dignity of their race at heart resent the impertinence of anyone holding the blacks as slaves. Haile Selassie ought to realise this and abolish his foolish dream of being an Emperor of slaves and serfs and try to be an Emperor of noble men, and for him to be that he must himself be the noblest of them all. He hasn’t proved his nobility in the war between Italy and Abyssinia. Ras Desta proved to be the Lord, the Nobleman of Ethiopia whilst Haile Selassie proved a cringing coward!

    In summing up for the judgment of Rastafari, we point out some of the many indiscretions and inaccuracies of this speech by Marcus Garvey, as follows:

    ‘ Garvey refused to use the name ‘Ethiopia’, which means ‘land of black faces’, the name that Haile Selassie I had restored for the Grecian name ‘Abyssinia’.

    ‘ Refused to address the Emperor as His Imperial Majesty.

    ‘ Called H.I.M. an ex-Emperor in 1937, having declared himself the ‘Provisional President’ of Africa.

    ‘ Referred to H.I.M. disdainfully as the ‘little Emperor’, and called him a coward and a wicked slave master.

    While Garvey seemed to have been euphoriated by the fascist nationalism of the period, as exemplified by Italy under Mussolini, and Germany under Hitler, he definitely sought to undermine the Emperor completely, even in Ethiopia itself, even’in the Emperor’s bedroom’!

    When, in 1937, and the U.N.I.A. having been collecting subscriptions for the better part of twenty-odd years, what were the real extent of logistical negotiations and arrangements made with African Heads of State? Had there been a study of the topography and the languages framework of the Continent to determine the number and identity of ports of entry, and the recommended areas for residential, agricultural, industrial and resort settlement?

    When it first became evident that no ship of the ‘Black Star Line’ would be capable to repatriate anyone to Africa any time soon, why was some contingency scheme not set up by the U.N.I.A., whereby contributors would remain entitled to ‘something’, and the organization could go on, even in the event of illness or death of Garvey?

    Is it not the MO of any great scammer to be able to put his/her intended victim upon a great, illusory high?

    What was the real reason for Garvey’s private meeting with Klu Klux Klan leader Edward Young-Clarke in 1922? Garvey’s businesses sold much stock thereafter in prime Klan turf areas.

    The mantra of the U.N.I.A. is ‘One God, One Aim, One Destiny’. With Marcus Garvey ‘cussin’ out’ the ‘Christ in His Kingly Character’, who then was/is the ‘One God’ of the U.N.I.A.?

    Why didn’t Marcus Garvey, whose both parents were Maroons, not seek to advance our cause from the stronger base of hard-won Maroon sovereignty, which had existed from before he was born? Why, in plain Jamaican parlance, did he ‘lef Queen Nanny a road’?!!!

    PROPHECY: Isaiah Ch.57
    This chapter of Isaiah unveils three characters in ‘spiritual Jerusalem'(Jamaica) at this time, being referred to as the ‘sorceress’, the ‘adulterer’ and the ‘whore’, all being great purveyors of speech. Who the cap fits, please change that cap fast?! The strong, redeeming arm of the Almighty is ‘stretched out still’, but not for much longer.

    While the entire chapter bears stark prophetic significance to Jamaica at this time, please take special note of the following:

    V. 8 ‘Behind the doors also and the posts hast thou set up thy remembrance: for thou hast discovered thyself to another than me, and art gone up; thou hast enlarged thy bed, and made thee a covenant with them; thou lovedst their bed where thou sawest it’

    V.12-15 ‘I will declare thy righteousness, and thy works; for they shall not profit thee. When thou criest, let thy companies deliver thee; but the wind shall carry them all away; vanity shall take them: but he that putteth his trust in me shall possess the land, and shall inherit my holy mountain; And shall say, Cast ye up, cast ye up, prepare the way, take up the stumblingblock out of the way of my people.

    For thus saith the high and lofty ONE that inhabiteth eternity, whose name is Holy; I dwell in the high and holy place, with him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones’

    V.19 ‘I create the fruit of the lips; Peace, peace to him that is far off, and to him that is near, saith the Lord; and I will heal him’

    This task has certainly not been easy, but, for the salvation of my people and the world, ‘So it is written, so it must be done’!

    I leave you for now with these words taken from Heb.12 v 9:

    ‘Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us, and we gave them reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live?

    By Christina Sinclair & Bertram ”Ras Mandito” Johnson

    Previously published here

    You may like:

    MERCENARY ‘GARVEYITES’ IN THE CLOAK OF RASTAFARI…..

    The ‘smutty’ foundation upon which the Rastafari Studies Unit U.W.I. has been built and operated.
    BEWARE!…Isa.57 v 14: “Cast ye up, cast ye up, prepare the way. Take up the stumbling block out of the way of my people”

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