More Than a Century Later, Ethiopians Are Still Debating Their Victory Against Italian Colonialism · Global Voices – By Endalk — The Ethiopian Empire stunned the world on March 1, 1896, when it won a decisive victory against the Kingdom of Italy at the Battle of Adwa, cementing Ethiopia’s sovereignty against Italian encroachment.
Italy’s army suffered heavy casualties, losing an estimated 7,000 soldiers, and another 1,500 were wounded and 3,000 taken captive.
The victory established Ethiopia as a sovereign state in an era when Africa was being carved up by European colonists. During this period, Western powers conquered almost all of Africa, except Ethiopia and Liberia, making the Battle of Adwa a historical anomaly, and the story is increasingly accessible to readers today, thanks to historians like Raymond Jonas and Harold Marcus, who have published pivotal research on this event.
Ethiopian Internet users commemorate the battle’s anniversary with debates about its historical implications and the accuracy of the information we have today about the conflict, all in the context of Ethiopia’s contemporary political complexities and flaws.