Theater of Victory
To convince the world you’ve prevailed in battle, sometimes you have to get creative.
In the mid-1860s, Emperor Tewodros of Ethiopia found his kingdom in revolt. He petitioned Britain for military aid. Britain ignored him. Hoping to seize the larger empire’s attention, Tewodros imprisoned a handful of British government consuls and missionaries. He got a bigger response than he bargained for.
Thirteen thousand soldiers joined what became known as the expedition to Abyssinia (as Ethiopia was then known), war correspondent and popular historian Alan Moorehead wrote in The Blue Nile (1962). Also deployed were 19,000 support staff and 55,000 animals, including...