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Since we are talking about central Africa: in Belgium there is quite some commotion about a BBC-documentary on our second king Leopold II and his behaviour in Congo.

Congo was given to him personally at the Berlin conference in 1884 (? i'm not good with numbers) by the the superpowers of that time. Before selling his colony to the state of Belguim 20 years later he tried to get as much profit out of it as possible. This mainly by the production of rubber. Congo had the monopoly on this ressource and because Dunlop has just invented the tire, this was an industry that was booming. The companies Leopold used to get as much gain as possible used the most rootless ways to make the local population work for them.

Although the cruelty this all happened with are facts that can not be denied, th documentary is quite controversial. First of all because it uses the word genocide. Second because of the fact the UK is portraited as the nation that for the sake of human rights was fighting Leopold. Their actual reason however was that Leopold kept his territory closed for other nations (except for a small part infavour of France) and they were loosing out of massive profits.

White king, red rubber, black death I was already shown on BBC, Dutch TV and in Belgium it was shown yesterday. Has anybody seen it?
 

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Damn, I've got to get satellite Tv.
 

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I love it when "genocide" is thrown around so freely.

Btw, UK fighting for anyone's human rights in the 19th century???

:howler:
 

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Andrija PFC said:
I love it when "genocide" is thrown around so freely.

Btw, UK fighting for anyone's human rights in the 19th century???

:howler:
Errr... Yes:) They banned slavery (OK they took their time) and I think there are still letters from African slave traders moaning at them for it!
We don't all eat babies y'know:)

And thanks to Partizan for producing Raddy Antic - here in Luton he is a Legend:)
 

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monte said:
And Jane from Luton Airport is a legend over here :)
She was my mate's next-door neighbour:eek:

Sorry, I know, i'm off-topic.
Where were we?
 

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OK the UK banned the slave trade but to suggest that somehow it wanted to "help" the Africans by taking Congo from Belgium (and did not want to do so for its own selfish self interest) is a little absurd, especially during the 19th century imperialist era. And as far as I remember, the animosity felt by natives towards English colonial overlords was more than towards say, the French ones. That's just my impression (and of a few others) anyway.

Speaking of Luton, for some reason easyJet wants you to be under the impression that something called "London-Luton" airport exists. London? Right. Nice little airport though, better than some bigger ones that I've seen...seems to exist only for the purpose of easyJet. That's about all I know about Luton. :D

We don't all eat babies y'know
OMG you don't?!?!?



:)
 

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All that Europeans cared about in Africa was money. The UK has no right to criticize Belgium, nor does Belgium have any right to criticize anyone else. We all were wrong.
 

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MagicalGenk said:
All that Europeans cared about in Africa was money. The UK has no right to criticize Belgium, nor does Belgium have any right to criticize anyone else. We all were wrong.
Were that the case, we wouldn't have granted the Union of South Africa dominion status in 1910. And we certainly would not have pulled out of Egypt. We sought to establish foreign markets for our goods, which does not benefit only Europeans, but everyone, especially those in the colonies in question. Behold the free market in all its glory. Behold the work of the European empires. Of course, King Leopold II was interested only in personal gain, hence the establishment of the virtual monopoly.

Andrija PFC said:
And as far as I remember, the animosity felt by natives towards English colonial overlords was more than towards say, the French ones.
Absolutely not. The French were the worst of the colonial masters (after King Leopold, whom I do not count as anything but a tyrant). This may be due to the failure of the French to civilise anything but the odd sand dune, lone island, or jungle (and Québec, if you call that civilised ;) ).

The relationship between the British and the natives is best illustrated by the affection that the native Americans had for the British, even until the mid-19th Century. One only has to look at pictures of the large British colonial towns (such as Cape Town, Accra, Dar Es Salaam, Alexandria, Delhi, Hong Kong, Singapore, and Kingston) in the early 20th Century to see why. Alexandria and Hong Kong were the equals of most major European cities, and certainly more attractive than the largest British cities (which were, except London, no more than slums).
 

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QUOTE]Originally posted by Bastin
This may be due to the failure of the French to civilise anything but the odd sand dune, lone island, or jungle (and Quebec, if you call that civilised ;) ).

[/QUOTE]

Not a good idea to use the verb “civilise” in historical discussions, Mr Bastin.
The term exists to make one group of people ("civilised") feel better about killing a different group of people ("barbarians").

As for the European Empires Magical Genk is spot on, although the Zulus weren't motivated by the goodness of their hearts when Shaka went-a-colonising.

Most people in the world's ancestors were either successful brutal Imperialists or failed brutal Imperialists:)
 

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I've seen the documentary. It was disgusting to see. The worst thing is that it happened like this in all the African countries and people who say that the Europeans didn't just go to Africa for the money and personal gain obviously does not want to admit it.

Sad thing about the documentary was that it was shown after 11PM here in Holland on not one of the most popular channels, so I doubt a lot of people have seen it.

Oh and Andrija, how would you call the killing of 50% of the population?
 

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Attila_the_Nun said:
Not a good idea to use the verb “civilise” in historical discussions, Mr Bastin.
The term exists to make one group of people ("civilised") feel better about killing a different group of people ("barbarians").
Follow this line for political correctness' sake, but do not tell me that you believe there not to be/have been civilised and uncivilised peoples. The term "civilised" does not justify killing different people. It justifies the spread of technology, and the spread of human accomplishment. I can see no civilisation in a bunch of technologically disadvantaged Tuareg nomads of the 19th Century, when compared to the joys of Paris in the Third Empire's pomp.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Prince-O said:
Oh and Andrija, how would you call the killing of 50% of the population?
Not that terminology matters, but I think the use of the word genocide/holocaustw as incorrect. This because Leopold II was nothing but an entrepreneur (yes Bastin long live the free market :rolleyes: ), someone who wanted as much profit as possible. he didn't care that soo many people had to die for it, but that wasn't his aim.

The number of people taht died, was also a bit suspect to me. The documentary claimed that indeed the total number of people after the colonisation was half of what it was before. The fact that this was solemnely the fault of the Western invaders look a bit incredible to me, but it's something I do not have other facts on so it's just a feeling.
 

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gOD said:
This because Leopold II was nothing but an entrepreneur (yes Bastin long live the free market :rolleyes: ), someone who wanted as much profit as possible.
It wasn't a free market, as both you and I have pointed out. It was a monopoly, sabotaging any chance of the free market creating wealth for the people of the Belgian Congo.
 

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Bastin said:
Follow this line for political correctness' sake, but do not tell me that you believe there not to be/have been civilised and uncivilised peoples. The term "civilised" does not justify killing different people. It justifies the spread of technology, and the spread of human accomplishment. I can see no civilisation in a bunch of technologically disadvantaged Tuareg nomads of the 19th Century, when compared to the joys of Paris in the Third Empire's pomp.
It is NOT political correctness (which is a euphemism for stupidity), it is the exact opposite - ACCURACY.

The term "Civilised" was used to describe Athens by Athenians, to make themselves feel better about killing the Persians, whose culture contained things the Athenians regarded as "barbaric" - such as women being treated with respect and given important jobs.
Ever since then the term has only been used by the ignorant and backward when they want to feel superior.
Since we had a woman PM from 1979 to 1990 we cannot claim to be "civilised".
See Neal Ascherson's "Black Sea" for a full explanation of the damage done to Europe by idiots who've believed in the concept through the ages.
 

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I would not attribute or deny 'civilised' status to any people solely on the basis of social structure or practice. I do so on the grounds of technological accomplishments. Consequently, any comparision between Athens and Persia is quite incidental (although I must note that Persian women enjoyed few benefits; they were expected to consummate incestual relationships to ensure patrilineal descent: not great). Also note that this means that slavery does not necessitate deeming a society as 'uncivilised', even if practised today, as it does not represent any sort of technological achievement (or lack thereof).
 

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To say that England was superior to others because Australia, Canada and New zeeland was colonies that turned in to good economies is very wrong as the english immigrated to these countries and the immigrants were threated with respect, the same goes for France and Quebec and partly south africa. All europeans threated natives like sh*t, actually all the people in the world threated natives like sh*t (in Brazil aswell and in the US they went far enought to kill everyone of them). In countries were brittish did not immigrate, failed of course. India was a magnificent civilization before the brittish so they should not really be compared and Hong Kong and Singapore naturaly had the potential to become great cities for trade and commercial.

I find this fighting for who behaved less criminal 100 years ago silly, all were very wrong in their actions, end of story.
 

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tricolornr1 said:
...All europeans threated natives like sh*t...in the US they went far enought to kill everyone of them... end of story.
First off it was Americans who treated natives like s hit, not Europeans. Go tell an Italian, a Slovak, or a Serb that he's responsible for the Indian Wars in the continental US. "Kill everyone of them": do you enjoy being absurd?
 
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