The Nature Of Colonial Rule

1182 Words5 Pages
The nature of colonial rule in the Congo was that of brute force, greed, and a lust for power. The scramble for Africa was one that was headed by the Europeans with small as well as larger countries owning colonies in Africa. The Europeans saw great opportunities for colonization and with the idea of colonization came power as well as wealth. For King Leopold II of Belgium, running an Empire was everything he had wanted since he was young. Adam Hochschild, the author of “King Leopold’s Ghost,” writes that it may have been Leopold’s lack of parenting that made his lust for power and wealth so drastic.1 With failed attempts to buy the Philippines and other land masses from other European countries, Leopold saw his only hope for his dream of an Empire in Africa. Leopold “had learned from his many attempts to buy a colony that none was for sale; he would have to conquer it.”2 He wanted a colony because he too wanted to gain profit from the natural resources the land would provide as he saw in France’s success with Northern Africa and England’s success with South Africa. Explorers talked of Africa as if it had no inhabitants and was just “waiting to be filled by the cities and railway lines constructed through the magic of European industry.”3 With Henry Stanley’s expedition and research of “empty” Africa, Leopold saw an opportunity to create an Empire. He acted as a philanthropist in public with only a few of his closest people knowing about his true plans to colonize parts of
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