In the second half of August the officers arrest the last of H. S.’s circle. They still don’t touch the Emperor, because they need time to prepare public opinion: the capital must understand why the monarch is being removed. The officers know about the magical element in popular thinking, and about the dangers it contains. The magical aspect is that the highest one is endowed, often unconsciously, with divine characteristics. The supreme one is wise and noble, unblemished and kindly. Only the dignitaries are bad; they cause all the misery. Moreover, if the one on the top knew what his people were up to, he would immediately repair the damage and life would be better. Unfortunately, these crafty villains pull the wool over their master’s eyes, and that is why life is so hard, so low and miserable. This is magical thinking because, in reality, in an autocratic system it is precisely the one on the top who is the primary cause of what happens. He knows what is going on, and if he doesn’t know, it’s because he doesn’t want to know. It was no accident that the majority of the people around the Emperor were mean and servile. Meanness and servility were the conditions of ennoblement, the criteria by which the monarch chose his favorites, rewarded them, bestowed privileges on them. Not one step was taken, not one word said, without his knowledge and consent. Everyone spoke with his voice, even if they said diverse things, because he himself said diverse things. The condition for remaining in the Emperor’s circle was practicing the cult of the Emperor, and whoever grew weak and lost eagerness in the practice of this cult lost his place, dropped out, disappeared. Haile Selassie lived among shadows of himself, for what was the Imperial suite if not a multiplication of the Emperor’s shadow? Who were gentlemen like Aklilu, Gebre-Egzy, Admassu Retta, aside from being H. S.’s ministers? Nobodies. But it was precisely such people the Emperor wanted around him. Only they could satisfy his vanity, his self-love, his passion for the stage and the mirror, for gestures and the pedestal.