King Leopold's Conquest Of The Congo

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When Leopold II rose to the Belgian throne in 1865, he did so with the goal of building and ruling his own colony and financially profiting off it. Leopold’s acquisition and eventual conquest of the Congo was very meticulous and orchestrated and revealed his greed and willingness to exploit people and territory in order to acquire wealth. He created a guise by proclaiming his motivations toward colonization as being philanthropic and humanitarian. He did this by setting up the sham International African Association and by using pawns explorer Henry Morton Stanley and American ambassador to Belgium, Henry Sanford.
In 1876 King Leopold II formed the International African Association as a front organization to portray that he was a humanitarian by promoting his efforts to civilize and educate the indigenous peoples of the Congo. Creation of this myth was key in his eventual takeover of the Congo and mass extraction of its natural
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Leopold’s acquisition and eventual conquest of the Congo can be seen as a reign of terror during which millions were mutilated and repressed while he continued to profit tremendously. He continued to profit from his use of slave labor, while the Congolese continued to suffer during his reign. Leopold’s reign of terror is an example of European colonialism and one’s greed for wealth and power. He set out to acquire the Congo under the guise of philanthropy and humanitarianism, but rather looted the Congo for its natural resources for his personal gain and enslaved natives in the process to produce ivory and rubber. King Leopold II of Belgium was able to make himself rich by exploiting Africans for natural resources and millions of Congolese died as a result of his
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