Haile Selassie delivered one of the greatest speeches of all time.
that until the philosophy which holds one race superior and another inferior is finally and permanently discredited and abandoned;
that until there are no longer first-class and second class citizens of any nation;
that until the color of a man’s skin is of no more significance than the color of his eyes;
that until the basic human rights are equally guaranteed to all, without regard to race;
that until that day, the dream of lasting peace and world citizenship and the rule of international morality Will remain but fleeting illusions, to be pursued but never attained.
And until the ignoble and unhappy regimes that hold our brothers in Angola, in Mozambique, and in South Africa in sub-human bondage have been toppled and destroyed; until bigotry and prejudice and malicious and inhuman self-interest have been replaced by understanding and tolerance and good-will; until all Africans stand and speak as free beings, equal in the eyes of all men, as they are in the eyes of Heaven; until that day, the African continent will not know peace.
We Africans will fight, if necessary, and we know that we shall win, as we are confident in the victory of good over evil.
The basis of racial discrimination and colonialism has been economic, and it is with economic weapons that these evils have been and can be overcome. In pursuance of resolutions adopted at the Addis Ababa summit conference, African states have undertaken certain measures in the economic field which, if adopted by all member states of the United Nations, would soon reduce intransigence to reason.
I ask, today, for adherence to these measures by every nation represented here which is truly devoted to the principles enunciated in the charter.
We must act while we can, while the occasion exists to exert those legitimate pressures available to us lest time run out and resort be had to less happy means.
The great nations of the world would do well to remember that in the modern age even their own fates are not wholly in their hands.
Peace demands the united efforts of us all. Who can foresee what spark might ignite the fuse?
The stake of each one of us is identical-life or death.
We all wish to live. We all seek a world in which men are freed of the burdens of ignorance, poverty, hunger, and disease. And we shall all be hard-pressed to escape the deadly rain of nuclear fall-out should catastrophe overtake us.
The problems which confront us today are, equally, unprecedented. They have no counterparts in human experience. Men search the pages of history for solutions, for precedents, but there are none.