King Leopold Ii Of Belgium Acquired The Congo With The

King Leopold II acquired the Congo as his first major colonial acquisition, aided by British humanitarian, Roger Casement. The international community attempted to buy their way out of the humanitarian crisis caused by Leopold's exploitation. The Association, led by Morel, promised to improve life in the Congo through disinterested humanitarian efforts. Leopold cast his rule as a humanitarian struggle against cruel, foreign Arab Muslims, while the Anti-Slavery Society and Congo Reform Association also worked toward reform. However, the Congo remained unprofitable and Kabila resorted to imprisoning opposition leaders and humanitarian activists. Leopold's image as a great humanitarian leader was developed through this campaign of civilization against perceived foreign threats.

King Leopold II of Belgium received assistance in the acquisition of the Congo mainly through the efforts of individuals such as the British humanitarian, Roger Casement. Leopold II presented several "humanitarian" reasons to justify his acquisition of the Congo. These included arguments about bringing civilization and Christianity to the region, ending the Arab slave trade, and promoting economic development. However, in reality, Leopold's true motivations were centered around economic exploitation and profit. To acquire his colony, Leopold used a combination of diplomatic maneuvering, forming alliances with other European powers, and using explorers such as Henry Morton Stanley to claim territory. The methods used to legitimize his acquisition included presenting the Congo as a humanitarian mission to end the Arab slave trade and bring civilization to the region. Additionally, Leopold worked to maintain a facade of legitimacy by establishing the International African Association and later the Congo Free State, which aimed to present his Congo holdings as a philanthropic and humanitarian endeavor.

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