Ethiopian order of battle in the Second Italo-Ethiopian War

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Ethiopian forces in the Second Italo-Abyssinian War besides the Central Army were mobilized from various provinces under their local leader. According to 1935 Italian intelligence estimates of the Ethiopian provinces and their forces on the eve of hostilities the Ethiopians had an army of 350,000 men. Strengths where known are noted followed by their leader. Modernized forces in Bold.

Ethiopian Army 1935

Addis Ababa

  • Emperor Haile Selassie
    • 3 Battalions of the Imperial Guard Kebur Zabangna
    • Cadet school (Mobilized as a Guard battalion late in the war with Cadets as officers with militia soldiers.)

Northern front

Army of the Left - Ras Imru Haile Selassie (Grazmach = "General/Commander of the Left")

Mahel Sefari (Army of the Center) (70,000 regulars) - Ras Mulugeta Yeggazu of Illubabor

Army of the Right- Ras Kassa Haile Darge (Qegnazmach = "General/Commander of the right")

Danakil region - Dejazmach Kassa Sebhat

  • 400 trained men
  • 100 regulars
  • 5 machineguns

Later Reinforcements

Ifrata Sefari - Ras Kebbede

Welega-Ardjo Sefari - Bitwoded Makonnen Demissie

  • 12,000 men (best armed of the Northern armies, also had Oerlikon AA guns)

Kaffa Sefari - Ras Getachew Abate

  •  ? men

To subdue Gojjam revolt

Wollo Sefari - Crown Prince Asfaw Wossen Tafari

  • from Wollo - Nevraid Aregai
    • 1,000 men
  • from Lekemt - Dejazmach Hapte Gabre Mariam Gabre
    • 1,000 men

Southern front


Ogaden Sefari - Grazmach Afawarq Walda Samayat

  • less than 2,000 men - Fitawrari Badde / Balambaras Ali Nur
  • Some hundreds of Somali rebels - Omar Samanthar
  • 2 Guard Battalions - Fitawrari Simu and Kebbede
    • 1,000 men with machineguns and mortars
    • 9,000 walwal & warder. fitawrari Walde Amanuel.
  • Total 12000 men.


Hararghe Sefari - Dejazmach Nasibu Emmanual - C-in-C in Ogaden after Afewerq's death

  • 1 Guard Battalion
  • Illubabor Sefari - Dejazmach Makonnen Endelkachew
    • 12,000 men
  • Gemu Gofa Sefari - Dejazmach Abebe Damtew
    • 3,000 men (described as having scarcely a modern rifle, with ocher and pink headresses)
  • Arusi Sefari - Dejazmach Amde Mikael
    • 3,000 men (provincial levies)
  • Kula Sefari - Dejazmach Hapte Mikael
    • 1,000 men

Webi Shebelle front

Juba Front

See also


  • Mockler, Anthony, Haile Selassie's War. New York: Olive Branch Press.
  • Osprey, Men At Arms #309: The Italian Invasion of Abyssinia 1935-1936