Italy invades Ethiopia.
Ethiopia was invaded by fascist Italy under Benito Mussolini, confirming the suspicion that the war had racial motivation and sought to extinguish the last light of African power in the world. As battles raged between Ethiopians and Italians in Africa, so it did between Blacks and Italians in the streets of New York. In South Africa, Black workers began a lengthy march up the continent to assist their African brothers in Ethiopia.
In World War II, Italy invaded Ethiopia in October 1935, marking the beginning of a brutal five-month conflict. The invasion was part of Italy’s plan to expand its African colonial empire, and General Rodolfo Graziani led the Italian forces. Ethiopia, a sovereign nation then, was ill-prepared to defend itself against the Italian troops, equipped with modern weapons and air power. The Ethiopians fought bravely and fiercely but were ultimately no match for the Italians. The Italian forces quickly captured the capital of Addis Ababa and declared victory in May 1936. The war was a significant blow to Ethiopia’s sovereignty, forcing the country to accept Italian rule. The Italian occupation of Ethiopia lasted until 1941 when Allied forces liberated the country. The war devastated Ethiopia, with thousands of people killed and the country’s infrastructure destroyed. It was a tragedy that Ethiopia was forced to endure and a reminder of the power of imperialism and the importance of defending one’s sovereignty.