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An Empire Reborn

Part 27


Vincent Longobardi




April 15th 1978

Consul Medici makes an unscheduled visit to Jerusalem, officially to visit his son and to see his newborn grandson named in his honor. Unofficially, he is visiting his son to convince him to give up his post of Prefect at this time telling him that he as achieved fame in his posting and it is time to leave on a high note.

April 21st 1978

The second carrier of the Mussolini class the Marcus Aurelius begins its sea trials.

April 25th 1978

Taken from Montgomery’s article on Italian East Africa:

"Italian East Africa is a land of startling contrast and perhaps the most clear cut caste system of any place within the Empire. Italians are obviously at the top of the pyramid and right below them are many newly arrived Imperialized Libyans. Below them are the ‘colonials’ from Somalia, Eritrea and Djibouti who while still segregated from white society and still subject to many of the anti-African laws are given dominance over the Ethiopians whose only use is cheap labor. Even after over 40 years of occupying the former nation the Italians still do not trust the Ethiopians as long as the line of the ‘House of Solomon’ continues to exist."

"I would imagine that the antebellum south looked very much like the current state of Ethiopia. Large plantations which here mainly grow coffee are run by wealthy Italians from their large villas and worked by cheap Ethiopian labor. Though, the wealth of the Italians is largely artificial. While the farmers do make a large sum of money living in Italian East Africa is expensive. All locally produced goods are extremely cheap thus allowing most of the Italians income to go to buying expensive luxury imports from the Empire proper. The Ethiopians themselves live as they have lived for decades in their native villages only now with running water and electricity. It is a simple existence where they have few luxuries and little time off. However, these small villages are rapidly in decline as Rome encourages the Ethiopians to move away from the villages and into the cities."

"The contrast of Italian East Africa can be seen most greatly within the cities. Addis Abbas as well as all other large urban centers are clearly divided between Italian and Ethiopian sections with very little overlap between the two except for Ethiopian workers entering into the Italian section to work during the day. It is difficult to tell whether the Italians took this system from South Africa or if it’s the other way around. But, the distinction is clear, the Italians live well with all the conveyances of modern life while the Ethiopians live very frugally. The average Ethiopian lives in an apartment complex where the greatest luxury they possess is a radio. Italians are rarely seen within the black sections of the city and they are policed by native Muslims who keep the Orthodox Christians in line with ruthless efficiency.

The sites that were formerly important to the House of Solomon have been turned into propaganda sites for Italian purposes. The former Imperial residence until recently has served as the seat of the Viceroy of Italian East Africa. However, Viceroy Borghese has chosen to rule the territory from Djibouti so that he may better command the fleet from the massive naval complex there."

April 30th 1978

Afghanistan goes Communist with the success of a pro-communist coup in the nation.

May 1st 1978

The New Roman Empire breaks all ties with Afghanistan.

May 3rd 1978

The Lira Block votes unanimously to cut relations with Afghanistan.

Prefect Medici announces that he will resign his post as Prefect by May 15th.

May 5th 1978

Taken from Montgomery’s article on Mozambique:

"The latest acquisition of Rome is still very much Portuguese. Those Portuguese who chose not to leave have all been granted the status of "honorary Italians" and thus colonial citizenship with the condition that they eventually Italianize. The Portuguese since then have been slow in adapting Italian and still prefer their old ways.

Italians themselves are a rarity here. Only 2,000 have chosen to settle within the colony making them an extreme minority and the thousands of others are just tourists enjoying what the Italians call "Summer in the Winter." In the place of Italian settlers are thousands of Eastern Europeans and Libyans taking advantage of the relaxed Italian policy for immigration to the colony."

May 8th 1978

Prefect Medici holds a torchlight procession through Jerusalem with the officers reading off the names of those who have fallen in defense of the city followed by the chorus of soldiers shouting "Present" after each name. Upon the completion of the procession the soldiers array themselves in front of the Prefect and report that all men are present and accounted for. The parade serves as a reminder to the inhabitants of the city that Rome is now supreme and will ignore any losses dealt to them.

May 10th 1978

Taken from Mongomery’s article on Rhodesia:

"While not officially part of the New Roman Empire it seemed fitting to end my series in the Empire’s only foreign ‘adventure.’ At any one time there are over 5,000 Italian soldiers within the nation.

Rhodesia and South Africa are both interesting cases being the only members of the Lira Block who claim to whole heartily embrace democracy(though, only whites can vote) and also proclaim not to be Fascist. However, whereas South Africa tries to limit the influence from Rome, Rhodesia embraces Roman help and many detractors claim they are on the way of becoming the next province of the New Roman Empire."

"The Italians have come a long way in winning over the hearts and minds of the white Rhodesians. While taking pictures of a procession of soldiers a group of teenage girls came rushing towards me asking in broken Italian if I was Italian. When I responded in the negative, they looked very disappointed, then asked if I had been to Rome. When I respond in the affirmative they get very excited and start asking if it is as great as the soldiers making it out to be and if the streets are really paved with marble. I try to explain to them that the Empire isn’t as great as the soldiers make it sound and they have their own problems. To a tee they all steadfastly refuse to believe me."

"If the Rhodesians generally love and adore the Italians, the native Africans hate and despise them. The Italians here are nothing but cruel to them. Whereas in the Empire colonials are treated as subject people where a meritocracy does exist for one to earn more freedom and power to keep rebellions from occurring, here the Italians don’t care and treat them all as potential communists. Combine this with the fact that all the soldiers stationed here have been chosen for their loyalty to Fascism this makes a dangerous combination.

Walking down the street the Africans often set up makeshift bazaars selling traditional tribal objects and charms. The local police both white and black generally ignore them. However, when these medicine men see the black shirted OVRA approach they scramble to their feet and run. Those too slow are kicked and beaten while being cursed at, called communists, heretics and savages. The white police do not interfere considering it to be a waste of time and any black police present quickly make themselves scarce.

Approaching one the black officers I asked if I could speak with him about the Italians, at first he was confrontational saying "No, bass(boss.) I can’t speak about them." After convincing him I wasn’t a spy with the OVRA he loosened up and spoke with explaining that except for the rebels the blacks and the white Rhodesians had a basic understanding. They both recognize they share this land together and have to work towards. But, the Italians to the native Africans are seen as "foreign devils" who bring nothing but death and persecution."

End of Part 27.


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