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Selected Speeches Of His Imperial Majesty Haile Selassie I



U.N. AND THE LEAGUE


.... The League of Nations failed and failed basically because of its inability to prevent aggres­sion against my country. But, neither the depth of that failure nor the intervening catastrophes could dull the perception of the need and the search for peace through Collective Security. So it is that here in the United Nations we have dedicated ourselves anew to those high and indeed essential ideals, essential if the world is to continue on the path of peace....*


It is a significant moment for me when, after eighteen years, I again find myself in a centre where are concentrated the passionate hopes of the thousands of millions of human beings who so desperately long for the assurance of peace.

The years of that interval, sombre as they were and sacred as they remain to the memory of millions of innocent victims, hold forth for us bright hope of the future. The League of Nations failed and failed basically because of its inability to prevent aggression against my country. But, neither the depth of that failure nor the intervening catastrophes could dull the perception of the need and the search for peace through Collective Security. So it is that here in the United Nations we have dedicated ourselves anew to those high and indeed essential ideals, essential if the world is to continue on the path of peace.

Ethiopia, for its part, is profoundly convinced of the triumph of these ideals, were it only that the past two decades have, in her case, fully justified them. The League of Nations may have failed, but Ethiopia was again liberated and through the United Nations has finally seen the rectification of seventy years of injustice and the vindication of the right of brothers to become reunited. Moreover, the memory of the failure two decades ago of measures of collective security is being effaced by the glorious achievement, to which Ethiopia also contributed, in the collective defence of Korea. Surely we have cause to be heartened at the progress of mankind.

We must lay aside any disappointment of the hour lest it cloud our vision of the goal to which we would aspire and press forward, with confidence, born of past experience, in the triumph of principles which are here represented and for which you, Mr. Secretary-General, labour so diligently and intelligently.

Ever since my country’s acceptance of the obligations of the United Nations as a charter member, I have looked forward to the day when I would be able to visit the organization’s headquarters. The physical realization of these splendid buildings, of the hopes and aspirations of those of us who have ardently supported the principle of collective security and the practical instrument to secure and maintain international justice have surpassed my expectation.

I have enjoyed meeting our able Secretary General and members of his staff, but I am not less conscious of the important and conscientious service rendered to the organization by the press corps. You are quite literally the eyes and ears of the United Nations and it is through you that the world can follow and can judge the realization of their faith in the United Nations.

I have always been grateful to the press for their awareness of the importance of the principle of collective security and of my efforts to establish that principle in effective action. I am confident that within the scope of your dedicated task of objectively reporting the achievement of the Organization you will never fail to reflect the patient faith of all peoples that only through discussion, collaboration, agreement and enforcement of the will of mankind can world peace and stability be achieved.

June 1, 1954.

* In the published edition this excerpt is used as the sub-title of speech 97 titled "U.N. AND WAR SETTLEMENT". It has been placed as the sub-title of this speech from which its text is taken, consistent with the practice in the rest of the volume.


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Electronic edition created and published online by members of the
Emperor Haile Sellassie First Theocracy Reign
Order of the Nyahbinghi

April 5, 2017