New Imperialism spanned from the 1870's all the way to 1914. The Scramble for Africa took place during this time period and initiating this was King Leopold II of Belgium



Download 5,41 Kb.
Date conversion29.08.2017
Size5,41 Kb.
New Imperialism spanned from the 1870's all the way to 1914. The Scramble for Africa took place during this time period and initiating this was King Leopold II of Belgium. Although not supported by his country, he took up the area known as Congo for himself through building a humanitarian fa├žade. While on the verge of bankruptcy, he forced and committed numerous atrocities against the Congolese in order to obtain rich and valuable resources such as rubber, all the while keeping all Europeans blinded to the reality of Congo. However, as years passed, several important people and organizations came to know of King Leopold II's inhumane activities and vied to reveal this to the world, eventually leading to the fall of Leopold's Congo Free State in 1908. Through their actions, the APS organization, and individuals like E.D. Morel helped reveal Leopold to the world, however, it was Roger Casement acting as the true catalyst in turning the tide against King Leopold.

E.D. Morel, after finding out on the atrocities and violations of the Berlin Act of 1884 committed by Leopold II, began to raise awareness on this topic. He held organized meetings to inform the English public of the horrors of Congo. By making public speeches highlighting and emphasizing on the "slavery" taking place in Congo and how there was no free trade there, he was able to sway the English public. He also encouraged first hand witnesses to speak out. To spread his cause even further, he collaborated with reformers from various countries to help resolve this major issue. Due to his actions and impact, public pressure on the English government made the parliament issue a Note to other nations of the Berlin Act, therefore helping unmask Leopold II. Through his actions, Morel was able to help uncover Leopold.

The Aborigines Protection Society (APS) also helped create an impact by informing people throughout on the terrible incidents of Congo. They pressured the government to act against and create a resolution pertaining to Congo. Their leader, Henry Bournes, also wrote a book in 1903 on experiences of victims and the situation of Congo in great detail. This made the public pressurize the government and made them further look into what was happening in Congo. The APS also worked with the Chamber of Commerce to create a resolution which was eventually made public. Due to this public pressure, MPs later proposed a resolution regarding Congo. From their determination and actions, the APS were able to contribute to turning the tide against Leopold II.

Lastly, Roger Casement and his report in 1904, finally helped ignite European will to fight against Leopold II's actions in Congo. His report, known as the Casement Report contained various accounts of victims in detail. After witnessing the horrors committed in Congo, he joined with E.D. Morel to form the Congo Reform Association which helped raise more awareness and kept the public enthusiastic and informed on this topic. They also pressured the government to take action against these atrocities. Eventually, due to this, there were numerous demonstrations all throughout Europe and then missionaries in the US wrote to the Office of Foreign Commissions to investigate in Congo. Casement's work and report dedicated to unmasking Leopold's actions was the only ingredient missing that eventually led to the ignition of the European public and even Americans in fighting for the victimized Congolese.



Reformers such as Morel, Casement and the APS all helped contribute to the fall of Leopold II and his Congo Free State, through their actions, especially by making the general public more aware and attentive to these atrocities. While it took years and large amounts of time and baby steps until Leopold was fully unmasked to the world, it was not until Casement's Report that major public pressure and attention caused the fall of Leopold and his Congo Free State.


The database is protected by copyright ©sckool.org 2016
send message

    Main page