1 KING LEOPOLD’S GHOST 1
2 LIMBO: OUT OF MISTS, AFRICAN MUSIC ECHOS UNDER DISSOLVING 2
PORTRAITS OF BEAUTIFUL CONGOLESE PEOPLE. WE HEAR THE NAMES OF
THE DEAD TOLL LIKE A BELL:
PRT 1-01:00:07:01
A MAN / A WOMAN
BOKANGU, Chief- killed with blows
with butt of gun
MAGUNDWA, Chief- killed with blows
with butt of gun
EKUNJA, Chief- killed with blows
with butt of gun
MONJANGU, Man- killed by the gun
EKUMBA, Man- killed by the gun
GILI, Woman… killed by the gun
EKAYA, Man- killed by the gun
LEKOKA, Man, imprisoned and hung
himself
UMPOLOKO, Girl… killed by the gun
VONTEMBE, Man- killed by the gun
3 INTERCUT WITH CARDS: 3
Crimes and Carnage
In a land called Congo
A MAN / A WOMAN (CONT’D- FADING OUT)
LOAFA...... MOEKU... DUA...
BIEMBAKA....EFOLOKOZAMBEYO...
BENGA.... BAKOMBO... IFEKA...
GYOLO...POKANGU.... BOMPALA
CUT TO:
TITLE:
KING LEOPOLD'S GHOST
BASED ON THE BOOK BY ADAM HOCHSCHILD
PRT 1-01:01:33:02
AUDIO MONTAGE: SPEECHES UNDER CREDITS
VOICE OF KOFI ANNAN: “Persons who are tempted to commit
unspeakable crimes must be deterred by the knowledge that one
day, they will be individually called on to account...”/VOICE
OF FEMALE REPORTER:”It’s been a long and brutal war in the
Congo...”/TED KOPPEL: “There are old scores that have been
settled here, creating new ones to be avenged tomorrow, or
the day after...”/UN: “The wrongs which we seek to condemn
and punish have been so calculated, so malignant, and so
devastating, that civilization cannot tolerate their being
ignored...”/FEMALE REPORTER: “It seems unlikely that the
people of Zaire will ever see the money that Mobutu stole and
kept in Switzerland and other countries...”/U.S. President
John F. Kennedy: “The United States has supported and will
continue to support the United Nations presence in the
Congo...”
INTERCUT with FILM CREDITS :
NARRATED BY DON CHEADLE
PRODUCED BY PIPPA SCOTT / CO-PRODUCED BY GLORY FRIEND
ADAPTED AND DIRECTED BY PIPPA SCOTT
CO-DIRECTED AND EDITED BY OREET REES
4 INTERCUT W/GRAPHIC: SEVERED HAND DRIFTING THROUGH SHADOWY 4
GREEN RIVER WATER, TURNING SLOWLY WITH THE CURRENT.
CUT TO:
ECU: ROYAL STONE LION AND CARD:
The lion is that fierce intensity which
recognizes no authority except
the highest truth.”
Rumi
5 EXT: AERIAL SHOTS OF CONGO’S FABULOUS RAIN FORESTS-DAY 5
6 SILVERY CONGO RIVER, HUGE WATERFALLS AND CHANGING LANDSCAPES6,
SULLEN STORM CLOUDS BREAKING OVER A VAST HORIZON, MOBUTU
RIDING TRIUMPHANTLY WITH ONE OF HIS WIVES THROUGH CHEERING
MOBS IN KINSHASA, MOHAMMED ALI AND GEORGE FOREMAN IN THE
“RUMBLE IN THE JUNGLE”, BEAUTY SHOTS OF THE GLORIOUS
LANDSCAPE SET AGAINST POOR AND ILL VILLAGERS, EMACIATED
CHILDREN, PORTRAIT OF KING LEOPOLD II OF BELGIUM.
PRT 1-01:02:42:07
2.
NARRATOR
In the heart of Africa lies a
country called The Democratic
Republic of the Congo.
The land is vast… lush …full of
life… and riches:
Ivory, Rubber, Timber; Copper,
Gold, Uranium;
Coffee, Diamonds, Coltan.
Natural resources, which have
inspired a most unnatural history
of greed and violence.
For decades it was called Zaire,
ruled by the notorious dictator
MOBUTU SESE SEKO...who some
remember as host to the RUMBLE IN
THE JUNGLE. Others remember him as
a ruthless criminal, who subverted
the hopes of his own nation.
The Congo should have been the
pride of Africa. Over three times
the size of Texas...with a river
capable of producing enough power
to light up the entire African
continent.
Instead, its people are among the
poorest in the world...and many are
likely to die an unnatural death.
They have been the victims of more
than 100 years of greed, plunder,
and terror...the legacy of a man
who had never even gone “up river”:
King Leopold II of Belgium.
JACQUES DEPELCHIN
(HISTORIAN/ALLIANCE FOR PEACE -CONGO)
For somebody like me having gone
through school in the Congo… what
we learned in the textbooks was
that Leopold was the greatest
benefactor Congo ever had because
he sacrificed his fortune for the
Congolese.
HONORÉ VINCK
(DIRECTOR, CENTRE AEQUATORIA, BRUSSELS)
I was in school from '49 to '69 and
I never heard a word related to the
injustices and constraints of
colonization. This type of
colonization is part of human
history everywhere and forever.
That doesn't excuse it, of
course...
3.
Card:
7 Belgium: “SMALL COUNTRY, SMALL PEOPLE” 7
Leopold, heir to Belgian throne, 1862
CUT TO:
8 MONTAGE: MAPS, PERIOD PHOTOS OF RULERS, TRAINS, BUSY 8
INDUSTRIAL ACTIVITY, A CHOCOLATE CAKE AND THE KING.
PRT 1-01:05:48:14
NARRATOR
Leopold ascended the throne of
Belgium in 1865. He inherited a
country not much bigger than New
Hampshire, wedged between the old
world power of France and the
rising might of a new and unified
Germany. While across the English
Channel, Leopold's cousin-- Queen
Victoria-- a constitutional monarch
like himself, reigned over Great
Britain-- the most powerful empire
of the period.
In the middle of the nineteenth
century, King Leopold was
beleaguered by a Europe that was
confidently entering the modern
age. A time of intense industrial
growth and personal enrichment -for
one in the appropriate position….
King Leopold felt anxious when
monarchs and profiteers had cut
their deals for colonies and
fortunes. What was left for
Leopold to cut?
9 MONTAGE: 9
Wide city vistas and old views of Paris, London, Leopold’s
double LLS on cornices all over Brussels, a moving tram,
grand buildings, shots of chained Congolese slaves.
PRT 1-01:06:40:15
4.
ANNICK DE VILLE
ARCHITECTURAL HISTORIAN
Leopold II has a primary obsession,
which is to provide Belgium with a
colony… He wants grandiose cities
with large avenues… with London,
Paris and the other major capitals
of Europe serving as a model… and
it's obvious that a colony would
provide the means to develop major
cities. But it's interesting to dig
deeper and to see- at what price.
PRT 1-01:07:05:22
NARRATOR
By 1838, Great Britain had severed
the long chains of slavery
throughout her empire, and by 1870,
most of the “unclaimed territories”
around the world had been colonized
by Leopold's European rivals. It
seemed only Africa was “up for
grabs.”
10 CARD: 10
11 Congo: “THAT MAGNIFICENT AFRICAN CAKE 11
King Leopold II of Belgium, 1877
MONTAGE: AERIAL SHOT OF THE RAINFOREST, CONGOLESE VILLAGERS
PRT 1-01:07:28:17
NARRATOR
At the start of the 1870s, 80% of
Africa was still under indigenous
rule. It was ripe for conquest, or
“Protection” as Leopold learned to
put it.
JAMES NEWMAN
(GEOGRAPHER, SYRACUSE UNIVERSITY)
The event that captured Leopold's
attention was Stanley's crossing of
Africa from 1874 to 1877. He
followed Stanley’s activities in
the newspapers which he had
delivered every day.
5.
MONTAGE: MAPS, PHOTOS, PERIOD FOOTAGE,SHOTS OF CONGO
LANDSCAPE, RISING SUN, STANLEY’S PORTRAIT IN HIS CURIOUS HAT,
PORTERS, GUNS ON CARRIERS’ SHOULDERS, VILLAGE FIRES BURNING.
NARRATOR
Henry Morton Stanley, the most
famous explorer of his day, became
the first white man to chart the
Congo River's course. The brutal
expedition took the lives of his
three white companions, along with
246 of his African porters, who
died of disease and exhaustion.
HENRY MORTON STANLEY
We have attacked and destroyed 28
large towns and three or four score
villages.
Diary, 1875
CARD:
12 “STANLEY SHOOTS NEGROES AS IF THEY WERE MONKEYS” 12
Richard Burton, Explorer, 1887
13 EXT: LUALABA RIVER, PHOTO OF STANLEY OVER - DAY 13
HENRY MORTON STANLEY
I desire some generous and opulent
philanthropist who shall permit me
to lead a force for commerce with
Central Africa.”
Diary, 1875
14 EXT: CONGO RIVER- DAY. 14
Pirogues filled with Congolese, African landscape
PRT 1-01:0
NARRATOR
The “opulent philanthropist” was
waiting. A colonial grab by Leopold
would require a cunning
“humanitarian” veneer. To engineer
a charade of philanthropy, he
recruited Stanley, and financed
what, to the world, was promoted as
a scientific expedition.
6.
(MORE)
Stanley's contract ran for five
years, at an annual salary equal to
a quarter of a million in today’s
dollars. Leopold had begun to cut
his deal.
JAMES NEWMAN
(GEOGRAPHER, SYRACUSE UNIVERSITY)
Stanley's job was to create at key
points along the Congo River a
series of stations that would
connect the east coast with the
west coast.
MONTAGE: COLORFUL INDIGENOUS CONGOLESE PAINTINGS
NARRATOR
He built not only a chain of
trading stations but also a road
around the dangerous rapids of the
Congo River - precursor to a
railway line.
15 EXT: SATELLITE VIEW OF CONGO, MATADI - DAY 15
JACQUES DEPELCHIN
(HISTORIAN/ALLIANCE FOR PEACECONGO)
If you look at the map of Congo
today, if you look at the structure
of transport, it hasn't changed
since colonial rule. You can see
that it’s sort of heading toward
either the east coast and then the
west, Matadi. So the entire
infrastructure was built, in a way,
to ship out things, not to make the
Congo a first rate industrial
power.
MONTAGE: SEQUENCE FROM 1939 FILM “STANLEY AND LIVINGSTONE”
WITH SPENCER TRACY
ADAM HOCHSCHILD
(AUTHOR, KING LEOPOLD’S GHOST)
Stanley has been glamorized in
books and by Hollywood as “an
intrepid explorer”, “a great
adventurer”, “a great builder”, but
he was no builder. He arrived
uninvited and laid the foundation
for really what was the destruction
of the societies that were there.
7.
NARRATOR (cont'd)
16 EXT. VIVI - DAY 1 6
Stanley’s first post overlooking Matadi, early colonial
officials at Vivi, soldiers.
PAPA MAURICE
(FORMER BELGIAN CONGO POLICEMAN)
Stanley was sent by King Leopold to
discover the Congo. It's him that
discovered us! .... Our brothers
that saw him first also saw his
soldiers...
ADAM HOCHSCHILD
(AUTHOR, KING LEOPOLD’S GHOST)
How do you make people into forced
laborers? Very easily. By force!
ECU: CHAINS, SHACKLES ENTWINING CONGOLESE STATUES
HENRY MORTON STANLEY
The best punishment is that of
irons because without wounding,
disfiguring or torturing the body,
it inflicts shame and discomfort on
the workers.
Stanley letter to Col. Maximilien Strauch, 1881
PRT 1-01:09:47:07
NARRATOR
Centuries of slave-hunting raids
had weakened the indigenous tribal
groups and there was no powerful
state or military obstacle to stop
Leopold.
Card:
17 “IVORY, THEY SIGHED…YOU'D THINK THEY WERE PRAYING TO IT” 17
Joseph Conrad, “Heart Of Darkness”, 1899
18 EXT. MONTAGE: RAINFOREST CLEARINGS, FAMILIES OF ELEPHANTS,1 8
HUNTERS ON TOP OF DEAD ELEPHANTS, OBJECTS MADE OF IVORY, VAST
COLLECTIONS, THE FORCE PUBLIQUE, INSTRUCTIONS ON PURCHASE OF
CONGO LAND BY LEOPOLD, DECEPTIVE ASSOCIATIONS CHANGING NAMES,
PHOTOS OF NATIVE CHIEFS, NEW CONGO FLAG.
PRT 1-01:10:17:16
8.
NARRATOR
Ivory. The coveted treasure of the
era. Exotic and expensive. Leopold
smelled profit and demanded
quantities of it.
KING LEOPOLD II
I am desirous to see you purchase
all the ivory which is to be found
in the Congo.
Letter to Stanley, 1881
NARRATOR
By now, Stanley had organized a
powerful private army, the
beginnings of the notorious Force
Publique -equipped with a thousand
rifles and Krupp cannons. The army
swept through the country, shooting
elephants, buying tusks from
villagers or … just taking them.
KING LEOPOLD II
You should purchase as much land,
as you will be able to obtain
without losing one minute... from
all the chiefs from the mouth of
the Congo to Stanley Falls. I will
send you more people and more
material...perhaps Chinese Coolies?
Letter to Stanley, 1881
NARRATOR
Leopold was adamant that his colonymaking
be perceived as
philanthropic. Leopold- the
redeemer of a savage people. He
organized his interests under the
guise of charity and benefactions -
often employing deceptive and
misleading Association names.
M. LENAIN
(COLONIAL ROYALIST, AFAC)
He asks of Stanley “You will
advance step by step and every time
you run into an indigenous chief
you sign a treaty with him. You'll
be under the flag of the
Independent State. Not the flag of
Belgium.”
PRT 1-01:12:14:00
9.
NARRATOR
To sign over one's land was
unthinkable. But the Congo Chiefs,
with no written language, had no
idea what they were signing. In
return for cloth, trinkets, beads
and gin, the Chiefs gave up rights
to all land, waterways, game,
fishing, forestry, mining...
essentially everything.
M. LENAIN
(COLONIAL ROYALIST, AFAC)
And Stanley signed hundreds and
hundreds and hundreds of
treaties...
KING LEOPOLD II
We have constituted entire
territories, ceded by sovereign
Chiefs into independent states
19 EXT: CONGO FLAG, SATELLITE IMAGERY OF THE IMMENSE BASIN 19
NARRATOR
The new Congo flag with the gold
star, symbolizing the light of
civilization in the darkness of
Africa, held sway over the lands of
450 Congo Basin Chiefs, a territory
76 times the size of Belgium. Over
900,000 square miles had become the
private estate of King Leopold.
COLONEL MAXIMILIEN STRAUCH (KING’S AIDE)
There is no question of granting
the slightest political power to
Negroes. That would be absurd. The
white men, heads of the stations,
retain all the powers.
Letter to Stanley, undated
MONTAGE: INDIGENOUS PAINTINGS
NARRATOR
Leopold maintained a complete
monopoly-even as he insisted that
he was opening up Africa to free
trade, and that his venture had no
commercial interest.
Card:
10.
20 “INDEPENDENT STATES OF THE CONGO” 20
Henry Shelton Sanford, U.S. Ambassador to Belgium, 1883
PRT 1-01:14:00:02
NARRATOR
The 1880s, in general, were
prosperous times for the United
States. A time of accelerated
productivity and national
industrialization. America was
moving toward an economic
ascendancy that would exceed the
greatest of the European powers and
launch America's own colonial
ambitions. Leopold looked across
the Atlantic and extended the
tactical range of his public
relations. He developed a dazzling
campaign of misinformation.
ADAM HOCHSCHILD
(AUTHOR, KING LEOPOLD’S GHOST)
It's called spin. And Leopold was a
master of spin control. He could
have taught today's American
tobacco companies a thing or two
about public relations. Leopold
convinced a number of American
politicians that what he was really
doing in Africa was stopping the
slave trade, and he convinced one
of the more forgettable American
presidents.
HENRY SHELTON SANFORD
The King's aim is to found a chain
of hospices, both hospitable and
scientific, which should serve as a
means of information and aid to
travelers...
Speech to NY Chamber of Commerce, 1879
21 INT: ROYAL PALACE DYNASTY MUSEUM - DAY 21
Leopold carved in marble, the Berlin conference, new posts
along the Congo river in paintings by colonials, announcement
of the African Free State, Congolese today in pirogues on the
Congo river.
11.
NARRATOR,
Sufficiently deluded, by April 1884
the United States was the first
country to recognize King Leopold's
claim on the Congo. At a conference
in Berlin the following year, other
nations followed suit. The
delegates, outwitted by effective
public relations, thought they were
endorsing an international freetrade
zone, but ended up granting
Leopold virtually everything he
wanted. Chancellor Otto Von
Bismarck called it: “A swindle”
NARRATOR
In May of 1885, Leopold named his
new private country "the Congo Free
State.” No African was consulted.
22 EXT: CONGO JUNGLE - DAY 22
Tree-felling, traveling the river, Congolese woman tending
maize, period footage of concession developers travelling up
river, Leopold schmoozing with his banker friends.
PRT 1-01:15:57:13
NARRATOR
Everything in the Congo Free State
was the property of the King. The
forests. The animals. The
villagers' vegetables harvested to
feed his soldiers. He held title to
life, to liberty. Still… lacking
the resources to fully exploit the
entire territory, Leopold was
compelled to create concessions
which attracted private investment.
Leopold retained 50% ownership and
profited even more…from taxes and
processing fees.
ANNICK DE VILLE
(ARCHITECTURAL HISTORIAN)
Leopold II is very cunning. And is
always going to find a way to
quickly summon his banker friends,
various firms, the Rothschilds,
future large corporations,
UNILEVERS,etc… and he will grant
them concessions...
12.
(MORE)
in other words, land on which they
will carry out their own economic
exploitation. Leopold II,
meanwhile, kept the central part
for himself, which became the
infamous Crown Fund, property of
the crown.
23 EXT: RAILROAD AND A RICKETY OLD TRAIN - DAY 23
PRT 1-01:17:27:07
NARRATOR
The Berlin Conference members
helped promote a fund for a
railroad system that would
transport Leopold’s troops to fight
the 'slave traders”. And Leopold
struck a deal with his parliament
for an enormous development loan.
In return, he agreed to leave the
Congo to Belgium at the time of his
death-- though he would ultimately
sell it back to Belgium at an
inspirational profit. He got his
loan interest-free.
24 EXT: VIVI, OVER-LOOKING MATADI AND STANLEY POOL - DAY 24
Yellow rustling grasses in the dry season, Papa Maurice
seated with a picture of Stanley’s prefab building, period
shots of forced labour building roads, the railway line,
children smashing rocks by hand.
PAPA MAURICE
(FORMER BELGIAN CONGO POLICEMAN)
After Stanley arrived they started
the railway line...Our ancestors
died. They died because they were
forced to break the stones by hand.
They had to make holes in the
rocks. They had to break it in
order to place explosives inside.
NARRATOR
Stanley himself, using a
sledgehammer, smashed boulders,
causing the natives to call him
“BULA MATADI” or “Breaker of
Rocks”, a name which came to imply
something more sinister with time.
13.
ANNICK DE VILLE (cont'd)
ERNEST WAMBA DIA WAMBA
(PROFESSOR/SENATOR DRC)
The construction of the railway was
very difficult. Many people died,
especially the Congolese. There
were also a few whites who died. It
is out of that experience that Bula
Matadi, which means 'rock
breaking', was used to refer to the
state but also to refer to the
breaking of all resistance.
Card:
25 “CRIMES AGAINST HUMANITY” 25
George Washington Williams, Minister & Journalist, 1891
26 EXT: CONGO RIVER - DAY 26
Elaborate fishing structures, river beauty shots, George
Washington Williams portrait, slavery conditions that he
discovers, letters to the King, to the US President, shot of
the Herald newspaper building in NYC.
PRT 1-01:19:36:02
NARRATOR
On learning of the benevolence of
King Leopold, George Washington
Williams, an American minister,
lawyer, and enterprising
journalist, proposed to recruit
other black Americans to work in
the Congo. He spent six months on
foot and by steamer going up the
Congo River. To his horror, he did
not find a colony under benign
rule, as described by Stanley and
King Leopold, but a hell-hole of
torture, abuse, and murder. In
protest, he wrote a milestone of
investigative journalism:
GEORGE WASHINGTON WILLIAMS
I accuse Leopold's officials of
tyranny. I accuse Leopold's
government of excessive cruelty.
Ox-chains eat into the necks of
prisoners and produce sores about
which flies circle.
14.
(MORE)
The courts are abortive, unjust and
delinquent.Not one State official
knows the language of the natives.
Your Majesty's Government is
engaged in slave trade wholesale
and retail.
Open Letter to his Serene Majesty King Leopold II, 1890
PRT 1-01:20:53:19
NARRATOR
The New York Herald devoted a
column to Williams' open letter
causing a furor in Europe where
other newspapers picked up
Williams' accusations.
GEORGE WASHINGTON WILLIAMS
The United States has a special
responsibility because it
introduced this African government
to the international arena.
Open Letter to the U.S. President, 1890
NARRATOR
Williams was the first person to
speak out about what others had
witnessed…but refused to admit.
ADAM HOCHSCHILD
(AUTHOR, KING LEOPOLD’S GHOST)
In describing Leopold’s Congo State
in action, Williams used a phrase
which prefigures the Nuremberg
trials by more than half a century:
GEORGE WASHINGTON WILLIAMS
Leopold's Congo State is guilty
of...crimes against humanity.
Open Letter to the U.S. Secretary of State, 1890
NARRATOR
Leopold dismissed the charges with
little difficulty.
Card:
27 “BEASTS OF BURDEN WITH THIN MONKEY LEGS” 27
Edmond Picard, Belgian Senator,1896
15.
GEORGE WASHINGTON WILLIAMS (cont'd)
28 EXT: PERIOD CONGO FOREST - DAY 28
Porters, forced laborers, carrying, pulling, heaving enormous
loads with great effort.
PRT 1-01:22:07:23
KING LEOPOLD II
The Congo State is certainly not a business. If it
gathers ivory on certain of its lands that is only to lessen
its deficit.
Letter to Belgian Prime Minister, 1891
KING LEOPOLD II
In dealing with a race composed of
cannibals for thousands of years it
is necessary to use methods, which
will best shake their idleness and
make them realize the sanctity of
work.
Newspaper Interview, 1906
JACQUES DEPELCHIN
(HISTORIAN/ALLIANCE FOR PEACE-CONGO)
I could never reconcile to myself
that- Belgians came to civilize,
right? To teach the Congolese how
to work was part of the civilizing
mission. Never mind the fact that,
you know, this was slave labor...
there was this notion that, and it
continues today: “Africans are
lazy”… People would make jokes- if
somebody wanted to say that some
other white was really working
hard, he would say well “that guy
is really working like a nigger.”
Which means to say, that in fact,
it was known down deep that, you
know, the Africans were really
pushed to work like slaves.
16.
EDMOND PICARD, BELGIAN SENATOR
Pitiful walking beasts of burden
with thin monkey legs, eyes fixed
and round from preoccupation with
keeping their balance and from the
daze of exhaustion.
Memoirs, 1896
29 EXT. CHICOTTE IN USE, PERIOD PHOTOS - DAY 29
Workers bound on the ground, hands and feet tied, splayed out
and being whipped, officials disinterestedly observing,
steamboats, rifles, Force Publique in regiments.
ADAM HOCHSCHILD
(AUTHOR, KING LEOPOLD’S GHOST)
What made it possible for officials
to deal out all this pain and
terror? Race. They saw the Africans
as less than human.
PRT 1-01:24:00:01
NARRATOR
The tool of this sanctioned terror
was called the CHICOTTE--a whip of
raw, sun-dried hippopotamus hide
cut into long, sharp-edged,
corkscrew strips. Its blows left
scars, but worse, twenty-five
lashes could render the victim
unconscious and a hundred blows
could be fatal.
The CHICOTTE became a symbol of
Leopold's white rule, along with
the steamboat and the rifle.
LUDO DE WITTE
(AUTHOR, THE ASSASSINATION OF LUMUMBA)
That colonial system was basically
organized and maintained through
military rule which the king was
trying to impose on the Congolese.
NARRATOR
Leopold's army --the FORCE PUBLIQUE-
- was nineteen-thousand strong by
the turn-of-the-century.
17.
ADAM HOCHSCHILD
(AUTHOR, KING LEOPOLD’S GHOST)
How could Congolese be made to
enforce this brutal system against
their own people? Leopold’s
private army would take soldiers
and send them 500-600 miles away
from their own homes. Nonetheless,
there were a lot of mutinies inside
this private army, and there was a
lot of local resistance to the
army.
30 MONTAGE: PERIOD SHOTS OF CONGOLESE UPRISINGS, HUNTERS USING3 0
BOWS AND ARROWS, SHIELDS,THE SWEDISH MISSION, ENORMOUS GROUPS
OF MALE ORPHANS IN MILITARY EXERCISE.
JACQUES DEPELCHIN
(HISTORIAN/ALLIANCE FOR PEACE-CONGO)
Well, I still remembered today,
orally, names of people who led the
rebellions because people were
literally being driven like
animals.
PRT 1-01:25:40:24
NARRATOR
A local chief named NZANSU led an
uprising, ambushing and killing
state agents and destroying their
posts. Nzansu spared a benevolent
Swedish Baptist mission and even
returned some supplies his men had
taken.
To control the population and
suppress such rebellions, Leopold
would raise an army of orphans
devoid of loyalty to anything but
the state.
KING LEOPOLD II
I believe we must set up three
children's colonies. The aim of
these colonies is, above all, to
furnish us with soldiers.
Letter to Congo Governor General, 1890
MONTAGE: PERIOD PHOTOS OF SMALL CHILDREN, A SCHOOL FOR
ORPHANS, A STARVING ILL CHILD, NUNS AND A CONVENT, LITTLE
CONGOLESE GIRLS DRESSED IN EUROPEAN WHITE DRESSES.
18.
NARRATOR
It was unusual in tightly knit
African tribes for parentless
children to be sent away but many
were orphaned because the FORCE
PUBLIQUE had killed their parents.
These were the only state-funded
schools for children in Leopold's
Africa. Disease was rife and the
death rate high.
MOTHER SUPERIOR -
Several of the little girls were so
sickly on their arrival that our
good sisters couldn't save them,
but all had the happiness of
receiving Holy Baptism: they are
now little angels in Heaven who are
praying for our great king.
Letter to Congo official, 1895
Card:
31 “THE VILEST SCRAMBLE FOR LOOT THAT EVER DISFIGURED 3 1
THE HISTORY OF HUMAN CONSCIENCE”
Joseph Conrad, “Essays”, 1926
32 EXT: TENNIS COURT - DAY. 32
Period footage of young women playing tennis, bicycles,
electrical power grids crackling and sparking.
NARRATOR
At the turn of the century, the
worldwide rubber boom exploded.
JAN VANSINA
(HISTORIAN)
This is the time when electricity
spreads throughout the western
world so rubber is essential not
just for automobile tires but for
anything and everything that had to
do with electric wires, and that
explains why rubber prices were so
high.
19.
33 EXT: RAINFOREST - DAY 33
Rubber vines, abandoned rubber processing plant, two former
rubber workers slashing vines and demonstrating latex drip,
period footage of colonial rubber supervisors, children today
scrambling up rubber vines, latex dripping into leaf cups,
period footage of forced laborers carrying rubber quotas.
PRT 1-01:27:44:19
NARRATOR
Nowhere did the boom have a greater
impact than in the Congo, where
rubber vines snaked high into the
rain forests that covered half of
Leopold's colony. The king had gone
into debt with his Congo
investments, but the return on
rubber would surpass all his
expectations.
JAN VANSINA
(HISTORIAN)
Rubber was not the most valuable
product, ivory was much more
valuable - but rubber was what
mattered. Leopold financed his
colony on the back of rubber.
UN-NAMED MISSIONARY
We passed a man on the road who had
broken his back by falling from a
tree while tapping some vines.
Congo Reform Association, Sept. 1907
NARRATOR
Rubber is a sap, which must be
congealed to be carried. The only
method the workers typically had in
the forest was to spread it over
their bodies as they worked. It
caused excruciating pain when it
was peeled away.
MUBANGA WA BEYA
(LUEBO VILLAGE ELDER)
People were afraid of this work.
Nobody would agree to take this
work on his own, no, they were
rather arresting them, chasing them
up to their home and they would tie
their hands with chains and send
them on the rubber job.
20.
NARRATOR
The Red Rubber Terror began in the
1890s. Two horrifying decades
followed of murder and madness, in
return for profit. Villages were
assigned exact rubber quotas.
Forced to meet accelerating
demands, tappers scattered widely
through the jungle, often climbing
trees a hundred feet off the
ground. They could make a small
incision at the base of the vine to
tap it, or - whack through the vine
entirely. This produced rubber
quickly, but killed the vine. In a
perverse reversal of production
management, tappers were severely
punished for not making their
quotas, as well as for making their
quotas, but killing the vine.
LOUIS CHALTIN
FORCE PUBLIQUE OFFICER
The native doesn't like making
rubber, he must be compelled to do
it.
Diary,1892
34 EXT: RIVER VILLAGES - DAY 34
A goat, chickens, period photos of a woman in a stockade,
many women chained together watched a white colonial
officials.
MAJ. WILLIAM PULTENEY
BRITISH VICE CONSUL
Soldiers arrive in a village, start
looting, take all the chickens,
grain, goats and finally they seize
the women. These women are kept
hostages until the Chief brings in
the required number of kilograms of
rubber...
Dispatch to British Foreign Office, 1899
PRT 1-01:30:30:02
NARRATOR
Sometimes women were held hostage,
sometimes children, sometimes
elders or chiefs.
21.
(MORE)
The wives of male villagers who
resisted were killed but often died
anyway in the stockades, where food
was scarce and conditions harsh.
GEORGES BRICUSSE
FORCE PUBLIQUE OFFICER
The women taken during the last
raid are causing me no end of
trouble. All the soldiers want one.
The sentries, who are supposed to
watch them, unchain the prettiest
ones and rape them.
Diary, 1895
35 EXT: LUEBO SHEPPARD MISSION - DAY 35
Sheppard and the Kuba people in period photos, Luebo
villagers speak of the impact of Sheppard, Children today in
the local school with teachers, Reverend Mutshipayi speaks of
Sheppard’s influence for the good, Hands. Hands, Congolese
atrocities, burning fires and smoking apparatuses.
REVEREND ETIENNE MUTSHIPAYI
(THEOLOGIAN/MINISTER, LUEBO)
Luebo was the site of the first
Presbyterian mission started by
Sheppard and Lapsley, who were the
first American missionaries to
arrive here in Kasai. Sheppard was
a model of courage. Sheppard loved
the Congolese people, and
especially the Kuba people - he
even learned their language. They
thought he was the spirit of their
chief’s children come back from the
dead.
MUBANGA WA BEYA
(LUEBO VILLAGE ELDER)
Our parents were living in
suffering; our parents were living
in death. By the time the Sheppard
party arrived our parents did not
have wives, they did not have
children. The torments time came,
they tortured people, others were
killed. But when Sheppard showed
up, our parents could at last take
wives and make children. So if
this village has been able to
prosper this way it is thanks to
Sheppard.
22.
NARRATOR (cont'd)
REVEREND ETIENNE MUTSHIPAYI
(THEOLOGIAN/MINISTER, LUEBO)
He especially focused on the notion
of human rights. He discovered that
these people were weakening because
the men were being taken and sent
into the forest to extract the
rubber. And in the event the men
did not come back with the required
amount of rubber they were beaten,
whipped and sometimes their hands
were cut off.
WILLIAM SHEPPARD
The chief conducted us to a
framework of sticks, under which
was burning a slow fire and there
they were, the right hands, I
counted them, 81 in all.
Diary, 1899
36 EXT: BURNING FIRES - DAY 36
Children, women and men with one or both hands missing.
PRT 1-01:33:45:03
NARRATOR
Hands were smoked to preserve them
until they could be tallied.
Sheppard learned that if a village
refused to gather rubber, the state
troops would shoot everyone in
sight. Some white officers
demanded proof that the bullet had
not been wasted in hunting, or
worse, saved for a mutiny.
Occasionally the soldiers would
hunt. And as a cover up, they would
cut a hand from an innocent adult
or child.
REVEREND ETIENNE MUTSHIPAYI
Sheppard responded to the
atrocities being committed by King
Leopold's agents, by writing
articles to denounce these crimes
to the world.
CU: THE KASAI HERALD AND SHEPPARD’S WRITINGS
EXT: THE ARCH OF THE SEVERED HANDS IN BRUSSELS - DAY
23.
NARRATOR
Sheppard's horrifying findings were
reprinted widely - in Europe and in
the United States. A Belgian
parliamentarian referred to
Leopold's Cinquantenaire monument,
then being constructed in Brussels
from Congo rubber profits, as THE
ARCH OF THE SEVERED HANDS.
EXT: ANTWERP,DIAMOND CENTER,DOCKS - DAY
NARRATOR
28 miles north of the capital,
Antwerp serves as the center of the
world's diamond industry. All the
ivory, rubber, and other riches
flowing into Belgium from Leopold's
Congo were stored in warehouses on
its docks.
37 EXT: ANTWERP SCENES - DAY 37
Antwerp town square, gruesome fountains of the giant and the
roman wrestling, the cut hand held high by the roman warrior,
hemorrhaging water onto the cobbled stones below, warehouses
marked CONGO DEPOT, a similar statue brandishing a cut hand
triumphantly on the high roof peak of the pilots’
headquarters, sculptures of cut hands everywhere in the city,
on buildings, walls, flags.
NARRATOR,
Medieval tradition has it that a
giant once controlled Antwerp's
harbor and demanded exorbitant
tolls from the ships needing
anchorage. If a captain refused to
pay, the giant cut off his hand and
flung it in the water.
One day a brave Roman soldier
fought and killed the giant,
cutting off his hand, and throwing
it in the river… so the city's name
came from the phrase "Hantwerpen"
meaning, “hand tossing”…
Hands are still in evidence……
everywhere.
Card:
38 “THE HORROR, THE HORROR 38
Joseph Conrad, “Heart Of Darkness”, 1899
24.
39 EXT: LONDON - DAY 39
Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament, portrait of Conrad
over, a Congo paddle boat, Liverpool Docks, book cover of THE
HEART OF DARKNESS.
PRT 1-01:36:42:15
NARRATOR
Like most people in Europe, the
writer Joseph Conrad also believed
Leopold's mission in the Congo was
a noble and civilizing one. But
after six months as a steamboat
captain on the Congo River, Conrad
returned to Europe so horrified by
the brutality he witnessed, that
his view of human nature was
permanently changed. He later
transformed his experience into the
most widely reprinted short novel
in the English language.
40 EXT: CONGO SWAMP AS MCCOURT RECOUNTS THE TALE, VISION THROU4G0H
BINOCULARS OF BOUQUET OF SKULLS.
FRANK MCCOURT
(WRITER/TEACHER)
Marlow, Joseph Conrad's alter ego,
is hired by an ivory trading
company to sail a steamboat
upriver. His destination is a post
where the company's brilliant,
ambitious star agent, Mr. Kurtz, is
stationed.
41 EXT: BRUSSELS - NIGHT 41
Lightening, a storm breaks in a black sky, daylight and lions
scowling, the Belgian royal palace of Laeken, gates being
opened by the royal guard, Tervuren Museum, the World’s Fair
of 1897 scenes of Congolese brought from Africa, the royal
stables, Enormous collections of congolese art, Leopold’s
double LLs
PRT 1-01:38:27:04
25.
NARRATOR
The most talked about exhibit at
the 1897 World’s Fair that Leopold
secured for Belgium was a Living
Tableau. 267 black men, women and
children imported from the Congo
'Free State' were placed in
villages constructed in a park.
Here, one could see replications of
a river village, a forest village
and a 'civilized' village, which
included ninety Force Publique
soldiers.
ADAM HOCHSCHILD
(AUTHOR, KING LEOPOLD’S GHOST)
When Leopold heard that some of
them were getting sick because of
candy they were eating that was
tossed them by the crowd, he put
up the equivalent of a “Don’t Feed
the Animals” sign at a zoo, saying:
"THE BLACKS ARE FED BY THE
ORGANIZING COMMITTEE"
42 INT: TERVUREN MUSEUM AND OTHER COLLECTIONS. THE DOUBLE LLS 42
NARRATOR
The Scramble for Africa included
looting of great quantities of
Congolese art that ended up in
private collections and museums
around the world. Also on exhibit
at the Fair were samples of
products streaming in from the
Congo.
Card:
43 “A SECRET SOCIETY OF MURDERERS” 43
Edmund Dene Morel, Investigative journalist, 1904
44 EXT: PORT OF ANTWERP - DAY 44
Ships coming and going up river, loading cranes, crates of
weapons, rifles, glittering river water,
PRT 1-01:40:12:23
26.
NARRATOR
By the end of the 19th century, the
Belgian port of Antwerp was one of
the busiest ports in Europe.
Edmund Dene Morel was a clerk
working in Liverpool for an British
Shipping Line, which had a major
shipping contract to and from the
Congo. On the docks of Antwerp,
Morel discovered a stunning fraud:
Rich loads of ivory and rubber came
from the Congo and into Belgium,
but very few trade goods were
shipped back -- except for huge
amounts of weapons and military
goods.
- and someone was skimming huge
profits off the top.
45 EXT: LIVERPOOLD DOCKS - DAY 45
Portrait of E.D. MOREL super over, docks in old Liverpool,
The king, stern and uneasy, Morel photo facing him, monument
to Morel
EDMUND DENE MOREL
The figures told their own story.
Forced labor of a terrible and
continuous kind could alone explain
such profits…it must be bad enough
to stumble upon a murder.. I
stumbled upon a secret society of
murderers!
History of the CRA, 1904,ff
NARRATOR
With a flash of insight from a
modest shipping clerk, King
Leopold had attracted, in Edmund
Morel, his most dangerous opponent.
Once he began to unravel Leopold's
web of deceptions, Morel would
become one of the great
investigative journalists of his
day.
EDMUND DENE MOREL
I was filled with determination to
do my best to expose and destroy
what I then knew to be a legalized
infamy responsible for a vast
destruction of human life.
History of the CRA, 1904,ff
27.
46 EXT: CONGO RIVER - DAY 46
Rusty old tramp ship carrying the Congo state flag plying its
way upriver, period footage of rubber parcels awaiting pickup
on the river banks, double-deck wood-powered steam ships
docked and loading, rubber gatherers with huge baskets.
PRT 1-01:41:48:10
NARRATOR
One of the rubber concessions,
ABIR, the Anglo-Belgian India
Rubber and Exploration Company,
sold raw rubber at a 700% profit.
Harvesting wild rubber required
virtually no investment except
backbreaking labor. Their books
listed forty-seven thousand
gatherers.
47 INT: SHEPPARD’S PRINTING PRESS OPERATION - DAY 47
MBAYA MPOYI
(SHEPPARD’S PRINTING PRESS MANAGER)
When they were beating them they
received up to twenty lashes. They
had no right to eat, and they were
not allowed to drink water. Many
people died following this
treatment.
Their words when they were lashing
people, they were explaining that
they came to put an end to our
suffering and that they brought us
better civilization. That's what
the Belgians were saying.
ECU: INDIGENOUS PAINTING OF LABORERS WITH MEDALS AROUND THEIR
NECKS.
Metal tags on workers, large groups of laborers exhausted,
sitting on the ground at weighing stations, or carrying huge
loads to be weighed, payment by colonial officer in salt.
NARRATOR
In high-rubber districts, villagers
were forced to wear numbered metal
tags so company agents could keep
track of their quotas. At just one
collection point, a missionary
counted four hundred people with
baskets.
28.
(MORE)
The state, or concession companies,
paid villagers with a piece of
cloth, a few spoonfuls of salt, a
knife, or nothing at all.
Card:
48 “INFAMOUS. INFAMOUS, SHAMEFUL SYSTEM” 48
Roger Casement, British Consul, 1903
PRT 1-01:43:33:13
NARRATOR
In 1903 the British Parliament
passed a protest resolution
condemning Belgium's failure to
live up to Leopold's promises about
fair trade and his treatment of the
natives.
FRANK MCCOURT
(WRITER/TEACHER)
The British Government orders His
Majesty's Britannic Consul in the
Congo, Roger Casement, who happened
to be Irish, to investigate and
report back immediately. Even
though he was employed by the
leading colonial power of the day,
Casement developed an eye for
injustice and witnessed more
brutality in Africa than most.
ROGER CASEMENT
On Sunday evening, natives brought
me a mutilated lad whose right hand
had been hacked off quite
recently... The culprit was a
sentry of Lalu Langa, a Belgian
"trading” Society. When I asked
these people why they had not
appealed to their Commissaire, I
heard from them- "Why it is the
Commissaire- it is the Bula Matadi
who does these things to us.”
Dispatch # 32 to British Foreign Office, 1903
The Congo River roils and runs relentlessly. A lone man on
top of the jagged rocks gazes at the setting sun.
PRT 1-01:45:36:17
29.
NARRATOR (cont'd)
NARRATOR
One of the rare testimonies
recorded, was documented by an
American Swahili-speaking State
Agent, Edgar Canisius, who was
moved by a "woman of great
intelligence” named Ilanga.
ILANGA of WANIENDO VILLAGE
We were all busy in the fields...
For it was the rainy season and all
the weeds sprang up quickly...a
large band of soldiers came into
the village. We were dragged into
the road and tied together with
cords about our necks. … The
soldiers beat us and compelled us
to march to the camp where the
soldiers brought baskets of food
for us to carry, some of which was
smoked, human flesh. My sister
Katinga had her baby in her arms
and was not compelled to carry a
basket; but my husband was made to
carry a goat. We marched until the
afternoon, when we camped near a
stream where we were glad to drink,
for we were much athirst. … The
soldiers took my sister's baby and
threw it in the grass, leaving it
to die. On the sixth day we became
very weak from lack of food, and my
husband with the goat could not
stand up longer and so he sat down
and refused to walk more. Then one
of them struck him on the head with
the end of his gun. One of the
soldiers caught the goat while two
others stuck their long knives they
put on the ends of their guns into
my husband. I saw the blood spurt
out, then saw him no more, for we
passed over the brow of the hill,
and he was out of sight. …After
marching ten days we came to the
great water and were taken in
canoes across to the white man's
slave town of Nyangwe.
as told to Edgar Canisius, 1899
PRT 1-01:48:44:16
30.
NARRATOR
Leopold pronounced himself shocked
at reports of misdeeds in his
domain. Again, he put to work an
early example of public relations
expertise. In a cunning counter
campaign, he used the newspapers to
plant shocking stories of abuses by
other colonialist countries, and
news of peace and prosperity in the
Congo.
ANNICK DE VILLE
(ARCHITECTURAL HISTORIAN)
Those in power don't react much,
they cover-up, so there's little
talk about the fact that behind all
that money... How was it obtained?
All that stays quiet. Leopold II
has sole power over the Independent
State of the Congo. The practice of
forced labor will continue, the
colony will continue to be pumped
dry.
PRT 1-01:49:44:18
NARRATOR
Leopold continued his lavish
lifestyle-- accumulating properties
in Belgium and villas in the south
of France where, it was rumoured,
he entertained pretty young girls,
preferably virgins, between ten and
fifteen years of age.
And Morel continued to write,
combining controlled fury with
meticulous accuracy.
The more he published, the more
insiders came forward with stories
of horror. Force Publique
officers, missionaries, concession
company employees, - all sent
reports. Secret crown orders,
confidential memoranda, casualty
lists, journals, and most
important, photographs were
delivered to Morel's doorstep.
31.
ROGER CASEMENT
In 1887, I spent several months on
the Upper Congo and traveled over
some of the ground I am now
revisiting after an absence of ten
years. The country was thickly
populated, frequent and populous
towns. But many of the inhabitants
have been killed by the Government,
men and women...
Report #32 to British Foreign Office, 1900
FRANK MCCOURT
Casement put the official report
together on his return to England.
But the British Ambassador urged
suppression of the report, and its’
graphic detail was watered down.
Leopold's staff attacked Casement
by saying he had really only seen
"individuals" suffering from cancer
of the hands, which had to be cut
off in simple surgical procedures.
EDMUND DENE MOREL
I saw those hunted women, the blood
flowing as the whip struck and
struck again, the savage soldiers
amid burning villages. Casement
told me he had been amazed to find
that I, five thousand miles away,
had come to conclusions identical
with his in every respect. An
immense weight passed from me.
Morel, History of the CRA 1904
ROGER CASEMENT
Of the persistent mutilation by
Government soldiers there can be no
shadow of doubt. Should the system
maintain forced labor on this
scale, I believe the entire
population will be extinct in
thirty years! Infamous! Infamous,
shameful system!
Diary, 1903
Report to British Foreign Office, 19
Card:
“A CRY FOR JUSTICE AND MERCY
RISES FROM THE CONGO”
Edmund Dene Morel,Investigative journalist, 1904,ff
32.
PRT 2-01:00:06:06
NARRATOR
Finally, after years of conspiracy
and silence, public opinion was
galvanized throughout Europe. The
'Congo Question' was debated in the
British House of Commons, and in
1904, the CONGO REFORM ASSOCIATION
was formed. At each protest
meeting, a lantern slide show of
photographs, taken by missionaries,
presented grisly evidence that
public relations could not refute.
In response to all the bad press,
Leopold sent to the Congo a sham
commission of judges to “clear”
allegations against him. But this
time, his plan backfired. The
commission heard many native
witnesses offer horrifying
testimonies. One judge broke down
and wept…
CHIEF Lontulu of Bolima laid 100
twigs on the table, each
representing one of his people
killed in the quest for rubbertribal
nobles, men, women, and
children.
It is in the pages of this unedited
record of testimony - and other
documents still not authorized for
public viewing - that King
Leopold's rule of terror is truly
exposed.
BOLD OFFICIAL BELGIAN STATE ARCHIVES STAMP: “Never to Be
Communicated To Researchers”
ADAM HOCHSCHILD
(AUTHOR, KING LEOPOLD’S GHOST)
This international explosion of bad
publicity was a turning point.
Leopold needed to rid himself of
the trouble of the Congo.
But he would not give it away. He
would sell it. And Belgium, the
buyer, would pay dearly for it!
Leopold demanded that the nation
assume 110 million francs worth of
debt, much of it in the form of
bonds.
33.
(MORE)
Additionally Belgium had to pay 45
and a half million francs toward
the king's building projects. And
Leopold himself was to receive
fifty million francs "as a mark of
gratitude for his great sacrifices
for the Congo."
When the king made public his will,
it was backdated so that his
bequest of the Congo to Belgium
looked like an act of generosity
instead of a financial deal. His
Congo fortune was hidden in
anonymous foundations, in secret
corporations, in shares of
concessions in Africa, in fiftyeight
pieces of real estate in
Brussels alone, and in multiple
properties on the French Riviera.
NARRATOR:
In return, his legacy to Belgium
would be to erase from memory the
horrors perpetrated in the Congo.
He burned the entire Congo State
Archives in Belgian furnaces... and
in fires throughout the Congo.
KING LEOPOLD II
I will give them my Congo but they
have no right to know what I did
there.
Letter to Aide, 1908
PRT 2-01:02:57:20
NARRATOR:
In December 1909, a year after
negotiations of the Congo were
completed, King Leopold II of
Belgium died of an intestinal
blockage. Ironically, Leopold's
open disdain for his wife, his
dislike of his daughters and sexual
practices cost him more popularity
in Belgium than any of the
cruelties he perpetrated in Africa.
He died possessing one of Europe's
largest fortunes. The wealth he
stole from the Congo that
investigators could uncover, was
estimated at more than 1.1 billion
dollars in today’s currency.
34.
ADAM HOCHSCHILD (cont'd)
(MORE)
Leopold never set foot in the
Congo.
Card:
49 Belgium: “SMALL COUNTRY, SMALL PEOPLE” 49
Leopold, heir to Belgian throne, 1862
PRT 2-01:03:54:08
B&W footage of rowers paddling a pirogue on the Congo’s
waters, workers carrying baskets of date palm nuts. Other
hard work undeerway. Taxation agent and his paperwork.
NARRATOR
Savagery against the workers
subsided somewhat with the Belgian
takeover in 1908, but the taxes
imposed by Brussels forced the
Congolese back into grinding work
on a land they could never own.
DR.ZANA AZIZA ETAMBALA
(HISTORIAN, PROFESSOR, CATHOLIC UNIVERSITY OF
LEUVEN)
There was a new kind of enslavement
of the Congolese people. It was
impossible to be independent, in no
domain: political, economical or
religious. Everything must be
controlled by Europeans, and by
preference, by Belgians.
ADAM HOCHSCHILD
(AUTHOR, KING LEOPOLD’S GHOST)
History is complicated. It's never
one single thing. But what Leopold
did was to establish government as
a system of organized plunder. This
was continued after him by the
Belgian colonial government, and it
is still continued today.
Card:
50 Congo: “THAT MAGNIFICENT AFRICAN CAKE” 50
King Leopold II of Belgium, 1877
PRT 2-01:05:37:13
35.
NARRATOR: (cont'd)
NARRATOR
The vast Congo state was proving to
be one of the richest in Africa.
The different resources of each
province promised immense wealth to
those who could extract it.
During the World Wars, western
demand for rubber and other
minerals increased. Laborers were
recruited with the same tactics
used in Leopold's time.
DAVID NORTHRUP
(PROFESSOR OF HISTORY, BOSTON COLLEGE)
A recruiter went around with
soldiers or police to the village
chiefs, assigned them a quota of
recruits, usually double what was
actually needed because half of
them would run away the first
chance they got, and then the chief
would round up those whom he liked
the least and send them off roped
together or in chains to the
district capital and from there
they would be eventually
transported to the mines. For this
the chief received ten francs for
each recruit.
NARRATOR
In 1920 it was still legal for
management to use the CHICOTTE. And
it was in use as late as 1959.
PRT 2-01:07:01:22
JULES MARCHAL
(FORMER BELGIAN OFFICIAL, CONGO)
Every morning we called the people
in the village...and then the
prisoners came before me. These
people got whipped in front of
everybody, the whip was being used
to tell these people “Look, if you
do not do what I say, if you will
not pick the cotton, if you will
not do maintenance on the roads,
you will be whipped as well, do you
understand? That was the system
that is based on fear. One could
say that Congo was made with the
whip.
36.
ADAM HOCHSCHILD
How many people died during the
Leopold period and its immediate
aftermath?
Nobody was counting. But, in 1919
an official body of the Belgian
colonial government, the Permanent
Commission for the Protection of
the Natives, estimated that in a 40-
year period, half the territory's
population had been lost.
JAN VANSINA
(HISTORIAN)
The question is what that half of
the population meant. I mean it is
an estimate. The count of the
population in 1921 was about ten
million. So half of the total
would have been ten million, too.
A large part of it is due to the
beginning of the colonial state and
especially to the rubber regime.
51 EXT: CENTRE AEQUATORIA, BUMANYA PROVINCE, DRC 51
PRT 2-01:08:59:01
FATHER HONORÉ VINCK
(DIRECTOR, CENTRE AEQUATORIA,BRUSSELS)
Father Edmond Boelaert arrived in
the Congo in 1931. He was shocked
by the consequences of
colonization. He recorded the names
of people who were victims of the
Red Rubber. Some of these groups
were completely exterminated. So,
the following people from the
Ikansa clan were killed: Bagonso,
who was killed by an arrow, killed
in this war, Lekoka, imprisoned and
subsequently hung himself; Efoloko;
Etale, killed in this war; Dua, his
daughter, taken away at gunpoint...
NARRATOR
Even though he had worked for years
as a colonial official in the
Congo, Jules Marchal did not learn
of the rubber terror until the
1970s, when he stumbled on it in a
Liberian newspaper.
37.
JULES MARCHAL
(FORMER BELGIAN OFFICIAL, CONGO)
There I read about the ten million
black people that we had killed in
the time of Leopold the Second. I
was scandalized. I asked for
documentation from the Foreign
Office in order to defend the honor
of my country. And I get no
documentation. Then I started to
think about it all... because I
never knew about these things back
then, just as much as the Belgian
people now.
There was a rule in the archives.
They were not obliged to show every
piece that was bad for the
reputation of Belgium. Every piece
was bad for the reputation of
Belgium. So they showed nothing.
NARRATOR
In 1983, Marchal was finally
allowed to see a revealing judicial
record that had escaped King
Leopold's fires.
Like Morel before him, Marchal
published his discoveries, which
were met with denial and disbelief
in Belgium.
52 INT: CONGO-CHURCH- DAY 52
Man drums, Women sing
53 EXT: CONGO-CHURCH- DAY 53
Statue-Mary, open armed, Cross
PRT 2-01:11:33:20
LUDO DE WITTE
(AUTHOR, THE ASSASSINATION OF LUMUMBA)
The Congo was, at the end of the
fifties, very much dependent on the
international economic market. You
had no important improvements in
political life inside the colony.
38.
(MORE)
Belgium didn't introduce reforms,
didn't introduce political space
for the Congolese themselves to
take over. So there was no
Congolese partner who was there to
take over political power.
54 54
MONTAGE: PHOTOS OF PATRICE LUMUMBA IN THE ‘60s, POLITICAL
MEETINGS, SPEECHES
PRT 2-01:12:11:10
NARRATOR
As the Congo neared Independence in
the 1960s, PATRICE LUMUMBA was a
leading voice of Congo outrage. A
charismatic nationalist, LUMUMBA
advocated for a unified Congo. He
battled the ghosts of Leopold's
legacy, which continued to take the
form of concessions and
corporations owned by outsiders.
EXT: B/W Shots of PATRICE LUMUMBA talking to citizens of the
Congo. Cool expressions on some white Belgian faces
LUDO DE WITTE
(AUTHOR, THE ASSASSINATION OF LUMUMBA)
It was for them very clear that if
LUMUMBA could manage to get a
complete decolonization of his
country, this would be a powerful
example for people, from Katanga up
to South Africa and that’s why hardcore
colonialists in Belgium
establishment, they didn't want to
give up the Congo.
55 EXT: MILITARY ON THE MOVE IN KINSHASA - DAY 55
Congolese marching and demonstrating.
NARRATOR
The Belgians imposed a five-year
plan leading toward independence,
which militant Congolese denounced
as a stalling tactic.
39.
LUDO DE WITTE (cont'd)
56 EXT: KINSHASA - DAY 56
Congo street violence, indigenous painting of PATRICE LUMUMBA
in jail, airport greeting of his arrival in Brussels,
Parliament voting, KING BAUDOUIN speaks before the Congolese
Assembly.
PRT 2-01:13:11:09
NARRATOR
Anger consumed the country. The
demand for self-rule placed
pressure on Belgium. In 1960,
LUMUMBA, who had been imprisoned
for his anti-colonialist activity,
was released and sent to Brussels,
where he joined negotiations for
Congo independence at the Brussels
Roundtable Conference. The
resulting democratic election was
the only one the Congo had ever
had. LUMUMBA was elected Coalition
Prime Minister of the new
government. In June of 1960 KING
BAUDOUIN of Belgium arrived in
Leopoldville to grant the Congo its
freedom.
57 EXT: LEOPOLDVILLE (KINSHASA) 57
Congolese wild with joy, demonstrations and cheering of the
arriving king, standing on rooftops, great excitement, the
King saluting the Congolese flag,
ADAM HOCHSCHILD
(AUTHOR, KING LEOPOLD’S GHOST)
Can you imagine? Here are thousands
of Congolese celebrating their longawaited
independence, and they are
listening to the King of Belgium
making this insulting,
condescending, patronizing speech.
58 INT: CONGO PARLIAMENT-DAY 58
KING BAUDOIN at the microphone speaking, the faces of
listeners both African and Belgian, PATRICE LUMUMBA rises to
answer.
PRT 2-01:14:21:10
40.
KING BAUDOIN
The independence of the Congo is
the crowning of the work conceived
by the genius of King Leopold II,
undertaken by him with courage and
continued by Belgium with
perseverance....
LUDO DE WITTE
(AUTHOR, THE ASSASSINATION OF LUMUMBA)
On that LUMUMBA reacted, he was
outraged by the paternalistic tone
of that speech and he decided to
put the record straight.
PATRICE LUMUMBA
Men and women of the Congo.
Victorious fighters for
Independence, today victorious. I
greet you in the name of the
Congolese Government.... we have
known ironies, insults, blows to
the head that we endured morning,
noon and evening, because we are
Negroes...
LUDO DE WITTE
In his speech he was explaining
what was the essence of Belgian
Colonialism and this was certainly
something which the Belgians didn't
want to hear.
59 INT: PARLIAMENT - DAY 59
KING BAUDOIN and his entourage leave. Troops
marching,indigenous painting -PATRICE LUMUMBA breaking the
chains of slavery and carrying the new flag of Congo.
PATRICE LUMUMBA -
We have seen that the law was not
the same for a white and for a
black, accommodating for the first,
cruel and inhuman for the other.
NARRATION
In his reply LUMUMBA alarmed
Western capitals. He believed that
it was not enough to free Africa
from its colonial past; it must
cease to be an economic colony as
well.
41.
PRT 2-01:16:02:01
JULIANA LUMUMBA
(FORMER MINISTER OF CULTURE, CONGO)
My father was a man who was a
Nationalist, who loved his country,
and who became a martyr when very
young.
JACQUES DEPELCHIN
(HISTORIAN/ALLIANCE FOR PEACE -CONGO)
Although LUMUMBA understood that he
had to accommodate Belgian
interests, he did not understand
that his nationalism, in the Cold
War, was perceived as, close to,
you know, Communism.
JULIANA LUMUMBA
No, he was not a Communist...I am
not a Communist. It is plainly a
matter of information.
60 EXT: CITY STREETS AS LUMUBA GREETS THE CROWDS - DAY 60
Being cheered as he and President Kasavubu tour the streets.
The White House, Ludo’s study .
LUDO DE WITTE
(AUTHOR, THE ASSASSINATION OF LUMUMBA)
This certainly confirmed their
fears that LUMUMBA would be a guy
who was thinking and speaking for
his people and wouldn't be
manipulated into some kind of neocolonial
sheep. LUMUMBA was a guy
who wasn't prepared to sell the
interests of his people.... When he
said for example “I want to work
with everybody, with everybody who
is prepared to accept the real
independence of the country...and
if it is the United States, OK.
But if it is the Soviet Union,
that’s for me also OK.” And that
was, of course, something for which
Eisenhower was much afraid.
42.
61 INT: US CONGRESS - DAY 61
Eisenhower addresses Congress
DWIGHT D. EISENHOWER
No single country, even one so
powerful as ours, can alone defend
the liberty of all nations
threatened by communist aggression
from without or subversion within.
Mutual security means effective
mutual cooperation.
62 EXT: CONGO - 62
PATRICE LUMUMBA being celebrated.
LUDO DE WITTE
When Eisenhower ordered killing
LUMUMBA, the Belgian Prime Minister
gave an order to organize a coup
against LUMUMBA, so in a sense the
two came to the same conclusion.
Card:
63 “A SECRET SOCIETY OF MURDERERS” 63
Edmund Dene Morel, British shipping line clerk, 1914
64 INT: UN SECURITY COUNCIL SESSION UNDERWAY-DAY 64
Indigenous painting of white people running away from PATRICE
LUMUMBA speaking.
PRT 2-01:17:47:15
NARRATOR
Western powers worried that LUMUMBA
would not allow them to continue
exploiting the Congo's resources.
JACQUES DEPELCHIN
(HISTORIAN/ALLIANCE FOR PEACE-CONGO)
I do not subscribe to the thesis
that it is LUMUMBA's speech at
Independence which sealed his fate.
43.
(MORE)
I think his fate was decided before
that. It was decided that he should
not stay in power.
65 EXT: KINSHASA - DAY 65
As troops move through the town and Mobutu is seen guiding
the action.
JACQUES DEPELCHIN (CONT’D)
And sure enough, within a few days
of Independence there was a mutiny
of the army...by then Mobutu had
already been working for some time
with Belgian and U.S. Security.
66 EXT: WHITE HOUSE- DAY- 66
Eisenhower conferring with Dulles,
LUDO DE WITTE
The CIA was trying to kill LUMUMBA
but in an indirect way. The
Americans were much afraid of being
linked to an assassination attempt
of LUMUMBA and that’s why they
tried to organize some Congolese of
doing the dirty job for them.
67 EXT: KINSHASA - DAY 67
Mobutu driving up, then walking toward camera. Soldiers
mounting stairs at LUMUMBA’s headquarters, PATRICE LUMUMBA
leaving surrounded by Mobutu’s henchmen. UN reinforcements
arriving, PATRICE LUMUMBA, hands tied behind his back
descending from plane in Elizabethville, hoisted into a truck
and held by his hair as his arms are tied up, Pauline, his
wife and son, a toddler, frightened.
PRT 2-01:18:44:09
NARRATOR
The CIA found an accomplice in
LUMUMBA's one-time supporter, the
Congo Army's Chief JOSEPH DÉSIRÉ
MOBUTU, who built an alliance with
the west in order to gain and hold
power.
44.
JACQUES DEPELCHIN (cont'd)
LUDO DE WITTE
The Belgian and the American Secret
Services who worked closely
together in tracking down LUMUMBA.
He was captured by MOBUTU'S
soldiers. It is important to know
that the UN played a heavy role
into this capture of LUMUMBA.
NARRATOR
The UN presence in the Congo was
also due to the threat of secession
by the province of Katanga, rich in
resources vital to the West -- a
threat instigated by the Belgians
and endorsed by the United States.
But LUMUMBA's troops and
nationalists in Katanga were
winning that civil tug of war.
LUDO DE WITTE
The blue helmets were sent to the
Congo to protect law and order and
LUMUMBA was the legal prime
minister of the country, had
parliamentary majority, but it was
the United Nations who closed the
airport so that LUMUMBA couldn't
appeal to soldiers loyal to him to
come to his aid, and secondly it
was the UN who closed the radio
station so that LUMUMBA couldn't
appeal to the population to come to
his help. LUMUMBA was sent to
Katanga together with two other
leaders of the nationalist movement
and after several hours of being
beaten and tortured they were
executed. It were two Belgian
Police officers who got the task of
eliminating the bodies altogether.
They cut the bodies into pieces and
got them dissolved in sulphuric
acid.
PRT 2-01:20:41:00
JULIANA LUMUMBA
(FORMER MINISTER OF CULTURE, CONGO)
I can only have a vision of what
would have happened if he had not
died.
45.
(MORE)
He fought for democracy, for social
justice, for the real political and
economic development of the country
and it must not be forgotten that
it was the only elected government
until today -- forty-three years
later. Thus we lived with the
consequences. Democracy was
assassinated in this country.
68 EXT: WORLD-WIDE DEMONSTRATIONS - DAY 68
Crowds marching, yelling, banners denouncing PATRICE
LUMUMBA’s death in many languages, indigenous painting of the
fallen leader.
NARRATOR
LUMUMBA's death sparked
demonstrations in countries around
the world. In Belgium, there were
hundreds of arrests. But the
outrage had little effect in the
Congo... where the new ruler was
busy imitating those who had
preceded him.
69 EXT: REVIEWING STAND, KINSHASA - DAY 69
MOBUTU and KING BADOUIN clapping gloved hands in time with
each other as the parade passes them by.
Mercenaries including ex-SS officers, cruise gleefully by in
jeeps, trucks in the countryside, burning villages, shooting
and killing protesting citizens, Mobutu trains his troops,
his planes bomb and raze villages, dying quarries, bodies
strewing the roads, killers standing over them with guns in
hand.
PRT 2-01:22:00:12
NARRATOR
MOBUTU seized power and used
ruthless violence, employing deadly
mercenaries, with the aid of the
United States, to counter
rebellions.
46.
JULIANA LUMUMBA (cont'd)
MOBUTU
We have no choice - we must forge
ahead, even bargain with the devil,
to rebuild the Congo. The Congo
will remain one and indivisible!
JACQUES DEPELCHIN
(HISTORIAN/ALLIANCE FOR PEACE -CONGO)
The period from 1960 to 1968 and
later concentrated basically on how
to really make sure that Mobutu
stays in power. That period
coincided with a period of
incredible massacres.
70 EXT: STADIUM RALLY - DAY 70
Cheering people as Mobutu in his signature leopard hat drives
a victory lap, waving as he tours. Troops continue to
annihilate the Congo’s own citizens. Western mercenaries keep
arriving, Mobutu meets McNamara, meets Win Washington with
Presidents Nixon, Reagan and finally President Bush, Sr. at
the White House.
PRT 2-01:23:06:09
NARRATOR
Mobutu and his entourage helped
themselves to state revenues so
freely that the Congolese
government ceased to function. For
thirty, years Mobutu was funded by
the US with catastrophic
consequences for the Congo and the
rest of Africa. For well over a
billion dollars the US got a
reliably anti-communist regime
during the Cold War and a staging
area for CIA and French military
operations. All that MOBUTU gave
the Congo was a new name.
GEORGE BUSH SR.
Zaire is among America's oldest
friends and its President,
President MOBUTU, one of our most
valued friends in the entire
continent of Africa. And we are
proud and very, very pleased to
have you with us today. Thank you,
Sir.
47.
71 EXT: CONGO - DAY 71
Military power reigning in the Congo, soldiers trooping the
colors before the dictator, then demonstrations against
Mobutu and his eviction.
LUDO DE WITTE
(AUTHOR, THE ASSASSINATION OF LUMUMBA)
The assassination of LUMUMBA was
basically the western powers doing
away with independent civil
alternative to the military rule of
Leopold II. Now once this had been
done they had to look for a
military dictator to keep the
country together and go on with the
exploitation of the country like
they did before.... and this is
what happened up until ‘97 when
MOBUTU was deposed of and the
consequences of this tragedy are
going on until today.
72 EXT: REVIEWING STAND - DAY 72
LAURENT KABILA reviews the troops this time, as MOBUTU’S
soldiers lie executed, necklaced by burnt tires. Mobutu in
his Limousine tearing out of town, his chateaux and villas
around the world.
PRT 2-01:24:35:22
NARRATOR
In 1997 the rebel leader LAURENT
KABILA swept into KINSHASA and
declared himself head of state.
MOBUTU's palaces were looted, and
his soldiers were executed. Mobutu
escaped with stolen riches, large
overseas bank accounts and title to
many of his 33 known properties all
around the world.
73 EXT: THE CAMERA IN A LEAFY HIDEOUT OVERLOOKING A CEMETARY I7N3
MOROCCO - DAY
Mobutu’s burial in progress. Cap Ferrat villas of Leopold and
Mobutu.
48.
NARRATOR
When he died in Morocco of prostate
cancer, his personal wealth,
accounting for inflation, was,
estimated at $4 billion. His villa
in the South of France is only half
a mile from Leopold's chateau.
From one cape, you can see the
other.
74 EXT: MONSTER ATOMIC BOMB EXPLOSIONS - DAY 74
The Hiroshima bomb, the Nagasaki A-bomb sequence. Mutates to
the strange, destroyed structures of SHINKOLOBWE MINE - a
derelict toxic modern Knossos. Our guide, Dibwe, stumbling
through the broken debris.
PRT 2-01:26:14:05
LUBAMBA DIBWE (WHISPERING)
(SECURITY OFFICER, SHINKOLOBWE MINE)
We are in Shinkolobwe. This is the
plant that manufactured the first
atomic bombs used by Americans
during World War II. Just after
World War II, it was shut down.
Today, no one is permitted to come
here because of the radiation from
the uranium.
JACQUES DEPELCHIN
(HISTORIAN/ALLIANCE FOR PEACE - DRC)
That mine, when it was started, the
concentration of uranium was so big
that literally the ore was taken
out of the ground and shipped
without hardly any processing. The
concentration was incredible!
NARRATOR
More than 80% of the world’s supply
of uranium used in the Hiroshima
and Nagasaki atomic bombs came from
the Congo. As military power was
now derived from nuclear weapons,
Shinkolobwe’s value increased. Just
before the Congo was declared
formally independent, the Belgians
poured cement into the mine and
flooded it, -- the Congolese would
have no access to it.
Card:
49.
75 “THE VILEST SCRAMBLE FOR LOOT THAT EVER DISFIGURED 7 5
THE HISTORY OF HUMAN CONSCIOUSNESS”
Joseph Conrad, “Heart Of Darkness”, 1899
PRT 2-01:27:53:08
GREGOIRE MULAMBA
(DIRECTOR, CENTER FOR HUMANITARIAN RIGHTS
CENTER/KATANGA)
Officially, Shinkolobwe is closed
but undercover it is still
exploited. You've got all these VIP
rich people buying products coming
from Shinkolobwe. Even if they
don't exploit it directly they are
encouraging young people to the
exploitation.
NARRATOR
Thousand of illegal miners swarm
over the radioactive zone, packing
sacks with soil called
heterogenite, rich in uranium 235.
The material is smuggled over the
borders and sold on the world
market, particularly to China and
North Korea.
GREGOIRE MULAMBA
I see trucks and trucks going
through Zambia with these materials
to South Africa. We have guys
claiming to be from the
presidential family. They can pass
through the border anything without
being searched. These are the ones
mostly involved in the uranium
traffic. We ask ourselves if the
President's family stand for the
construction of the Congo or the
destruction of the Congo.
76 INT: DR. JIM FREEDMAN OFFICE, ONTARIO, CANADA - DAY EXT: 76
KATANGA, KASAI, MINING CENTERS.
50.
JIM FREEDMAN
(DEVELOPMENT SPECIALIST)
In order to understand this
conflict, that some people say has
now come to an end, but it
hasn't....
77 EXT: EXT: KATANGA MINES - DAY 77
Kasai, mining centers
JIM FREEDMAN (CONT'D)
...it's important to understand the
role of commercial activity in the
Congo. This is a war over loot.
It's a mercenaries' war.
78 EXT: LAURENT KABILA’S TROOPS ON DISPLAY - DAY, REBEL TROOPS7 8
MOVING THROUGH THE EAST OF CONGO, WEAPONS EVERYWHERE,
CONSCRIPTS TRAINING, RIFLE PRACTICE.
Kabila Sr. watching his troops pass in parade, rebel troops
moving through the east of the Congo, weapons everywhere,
conscripts training, rifle practice.
PRT 2-01:29:35:07
NARRATOR
Although Laurent KABILA had pledged
changes when he took power, he
failed his people, growing
secretive and distant. Elections he
had promised- never took place.
Rwanda and Uganda attempted to
depose him, triggering what became
known as the African World War,
when neighboring countries came to
his aid.
JIM FREEDMAN
(DEVELOPMENT SPECIALIST)
At some point there were about six
different national armies roaming
around the Congo. They’re not so
sure who they were fighting, I
don’t think. Everyone knew that
Zimbabwe, Angola, Namibia and the
Congo were fighting Rwanda, Burundi
and so on.
ECU: MAP CENTRAL AFRICA. WARRING COUNTRIES IDENTIFIED.
51.
JIM FREEDMAN
But I don't think that the soldiers
were very concerned about it either
because...in brief, they began to
pillage and plunder.
79 EXT: VILLAGERS ON THE ROAD - DAY 79
Villagers laden with household goods, moving away from the
violence, children crossing the acacia savannah forest
carrying rifles.
PRT 2-01:30:25:09
JAN VANSINA
(HISTORIAN)
In the 1980s and ‘90s, local
Congolese began to have to fend
their own way, setting up basically
their own local governments. They
began by smuggling, they began by
exploiting gold, exploiting coffee
even, crossing the boundaries to
Uganda or to Rwanda with it...
JIM FREEDMAN
(DEVELOPMENT SPECIALIST)
These ragtag armies began to maraud
the countryside. Villages were then
displaced. These displaced villages
escaped and formed their own
militias and by 2002 every little
guy over 12 years old had a gun. It
was the most remarkable example
that I've ever seen, and I've seen
a bit, of the complete
militarization of a society.
80 EXT: THE CONGO RIVER - DAY 80
Rebel troops crowing and singing in a motor boat on the river
as they smuggle goods from one bank to the other and travel
on to different camps; Bunia and kids camouflaged in
shrubbery, Kivu under siege, mourners in procession for the
funeral for laurent kabila
NARRATOR
Laurent Kabila was assassinated by
one of his bodyguards in January,
2001. The ensuing chaos provided
cover for the world's ruling
powers.
52.
81 EXT: THE CONGO RIVER - DAY 81
Off-shore oil-rigs and a helicopter landing on one.
JAN VANSINA
You see! In sense this is again
like Leopold’s time! It is again
exploiting without any control!
82 EXT: COLTAN MINING OPERATION - DAY 82
Boys sieving dirt in a river, bags of the black mineral
COLTAN, infants with birth deformities, spinal bifida, big
cities with crowds on the street, many on cell-phones.
NARRATOR
Today, nothing fuels pillage more
than the scramble for COLTAN, short
for columbite-tantalite, a metallic
ore found mainly in the eastern
Congo. Increasingly vital to all
aspects of modern life, coltan is a
key component in cell phones and
computer chips and absolutely
essential to global communications,
transportation and defense. Seventythree
percent of the world's
reserves are in the Congo.
PRT 2-01:32:21:00
JAN VANSINA
(HISTORIAN)
From 1994 - onwards, COLTAN became
quite important in the west. This
led to an unbridled rush for COLTAN
by all armed groups on all sides
but mainly by the Ugandans and
Rwandans.
NARRATOR
Ironically, miners are collecting a
mineral they have no use for.
Officially, it is moderately
radioactive. Local workers are
warned against carrying a day's
collection in their pockets lest it
result in sterility or cancers.
Birth defects appear in children of
miners who store sack loads of the
mineral in their homes.
53.
(MORE)
In the west, most people remain
indifferent to the effects that
modern economic exploitation has on
global populations.
83 DELETED 83
84 EXT: BY THE CONGO RIVER - EVENING 84
Peaceful scene of women cooking dinner over a fire outside in
the dirt backyard of a former colonial mansion, now occupied
by several large families; refugees fleeing rebel conflict;
Congolese washing for diamonds in home-made sluices; UN flags
flying; the Security Council in session.
PRT 2-01:33:46:20
JAN VANSINA
(HISTORIAN)
One knows that about three million
people died in Kivu and in
Equateur, either directly from
military operations or indirectly
from famine and malnutrition, plus
famine combined. We are dealing
with the mortality that is
associated with a system of
exploitation that is based on
unbridled capitalism. Whatever
happens, the only thing that counts
are the profits!
NARRATOR
In June of 2003,the UN appointed a
panel to investigate the growing
abuses underway in the Congo.
ECU: THE REPORT, ANNEX # 1: THE EXPERT PANEL ON THE ILLEGAL
EXPLOITATION OF NATURAL RESOURCES AND OTHER FORMS OF WEALTH
IN THE DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF THE CONGO.
A background of lush landscape, troops and mercenaries on the
move.
54.
NARRATOR (cont'd)
JIM FREEDMAN
(DEVELOPMENT SPECIALIST)
I did serve as a member of the
United Nations’ Panel of Experts:
The Expert Panel on the
Exploitation of Natural Resources
and other Forms of Wealth in the
Democratic Republic of the Congo.
It did imply by the name that it
was this issue, the issue of
inappropriate commercial activity
with dire consequences that was
responsible for the conflict for
this war essentially. And I would
like to stress that the roots of
civil wars is in economic issues.
PRT 2-01:34:59:18
ARNAUD ZAJTMAN
(BBC & AP JOURNALIST)
I think there is some sort of limit
to greed and profit and I think
that is what the UN panel report
has shown. You don't use war to
make profit when people suffer
like, in a country like the
Congo...
85 EXT-CONGO-RECEPTION-DAY 85
Leaders of neighboring countries, various presidents and
military commanders.
JIM FREEDMAN
Now, who are these companies? Some
are, of course, criminal operations
and we find this everywhere. But
there are also terrorist
organizations that are involved in
business and the line between
Hezbollah and Hezbollah's political
and its business operations is
pretty slim. And then there are the
military regimes of neighboring
countries who have come to realize
that this is a much better way to
make money than through taxes and
through foreign aid.
55.
86 EXT-EUROPE- ANONYMOUS BUILDING FACADES 86
PRT 2-01:35:51:23
JIM FREEDMAN
And then finally, there are the
transnational corporations. Who
claim that they're doing a great
deal of good for the Congolese.
But, on closer inspection their
role is nefarious.
And I'm delighted that the Panel
took the decision as it did, to
name the companies.
It named a hundred and fifty seven
of them; and it started the ball
rolling.
87 ECU: UN REPORT-NAMES OF COMPANIES AND COUNTRY OF ORIGIN 87
JIM FREEDMAN
All these companies that helped are
complicit in what's happening
in the Congo. Banks may be among
them.
WAMBA DIA WAMBA
(PROFESSOR / SENATOR DRC)
The lowering of costs of production
came by the use of violence, and
that’s getting diamonds and gold
much easier than paying the cost of
labor of their production.
EXT - CONGO-DAY
Artisanal gold miners at work in the red earth of Congo.
JIM FREEDMAN
Its the economics that drive so
many of the conflicts with which
we’re grappling today. These are
not going to be settled by peace
accords and by political
reconciliation. These are going to
be settled by some mechanism which
is able to hold businesses,
international corporations,
mining companies, trading
companies, to account.
56.
88 EXT: KINSHASA - DAY 88
Kabila the Son taking the presidential oath of office, pomp
and circumstance, a marching band, drummers, crowds of onlookers
PRT 2-01:37:32:09
NARRATOR
JOSEPH KABILA, in command of the
Congo's military, succeeded his
father immediately after Laurent
Kabila was assassinated. The new
president is young but embattled;
faced with a country suffering from
32 years of war. Unlike his father,
he has attempted to negotiate with
some of his father's enemies.
ARNAUD ZAJTMAN
And each of them has some personal
particular strongholds or
relationships with power in this
country.
92 EXT: AIRPORT - Day 92
Bemba descends from his private plane, greeted by military
comrades, villagers. Ammunition unloading, rockets, bullets
carried off.
ARNAUD ZAJTMAN
(BBC & AP JOURNALIST)
Jean Pierre Bemba is Congolese,
comes from the Mobutu clan, but he
was also a warlord and he may be
accused by the International Court
at some point.
89 EXT: BEMBA’S CAMP AT GBADOLITE-DAY 89
Site of MOBUTU’s former villa and the interior of Bemba’s
headquarters. Exteriors of Bemba being greeted by mobs of
cheering villagers (once again!) And receiving the adulation
of the people, singing songs honoring their leader and the
army and victory, marching along with him huge and muscular,
and his heavily armed guards.
57.
JEAN-PIERRE BEMBA
(VICE PRESIDENT/DRC & LEADER OF MLC)
It's no secret, that the rich
resources of this country have
never benefited the Congolese
people, instead they have benefited
either those in power or foreign
political and financial groups...
PRT 2-01:38:44:22
NARRATOR
In January 1999, JEAN-PIERRE BEMBA,
leader of the Movement for the
Liberation of the Congo, along with
the Ugandan MAJOR GENERAL JAMES
KAZINI, organized a looting of
coffee beans so vast that it
bankrupted the Congolaise Société
of Coffee, the largest owner of
coffee stocks in the northeast.
JEAN-PIERRE BEMBA
There was little to profit from in
the area I controlled because it
was in the forest, there were no
resources from which we could
profit.
90 EXT: KINSHASA, BANQUE COMMERCIAL DU CONGO. 90
NARRATOR
The UN Panel Report reveals that in
Equateur Province, where Bemba is
in control, he instructed his
soldiers to systematically empty
banks once a town was captured.
PRT 2-01:40:11:10
JEAN-PIERRE BEMBA
It was in the United Nations'
report, actually. It mentions $5
billion that were embezzled.
58.
91 EXT: PARLIAMENT IN KINSHASA- DAY 91
The installation of the four Vice-presidents. Dancing, redcarpet
pomp and circumstance, arrival of kabila under heavily
guarded police escort, flashing lights, press scampering all
around, cheering mobs, dancing medicine doctors, arrival of
Bemba, four rebel leaders on stage, judges in ceremonial red
robes, the auditorium mobbed and screaming, banners displayed
for each candidate.
NARRATOR
In an effort to stabilize his
country, JOSEPH KABILA has sought
debt cancellation from the World
Bank, the International Monetary
Fund, the U.S., France, and
Belgium.
Four main rebel leaders now serve
as vice presidents in a powersharing
government designed to end
the country's civil war.
ARNAUD ZAJTMAN
(BBC & AP JOURNALIST)
I think the situation here is so
terrible that people don't really
give a lot of importance to the
legitimacy of, of these different
political leaders. What people want
now is just some sort of economic
development, some sort of peace so
they are ready to, to support
Joseph KABILA if he provides this.
NARRATOR
JOSEPH KABILA promised elections
for 2005 which did not take place.
The four Vice Presidents will
compete with Kabila for the
presidency..
ARNAUD ZAJTMAN
(BBC & AP JOURNALIST)
I think it's also in the hands of
the local people to fight for their
rights. People haven't really yet
realized that it's perhaps the
right time for them to march and
take to the streets.
59.
LUDO DE WITTE
(AUTHOR, THE ASSASSINATION OF LUMUMBA)
The Congo is simply too rich to be
left alone, to be left by itself
and to be governed by the Congolese
themselves. There are too many
forces who have big stakes into
getting their hands onto those huge
wealths which are there into the
Congo. And this was so during the
time of Leopold the II and it is
the same today....
92 EXT: RIVER VILLAGE- EARLY EVENING 92
Young girl cooking over open fire, other children seated
nearby on the dry ground watching. Peaceful.
Card:
93 “INFAMOUS. INFAMOUS, SHAMEFUL SYSTEM” 93
Roger Casement, British Consul, 1903
94 EXT: ROAD, ON THE BORDER - DAY 94
Torrents of refugees, miles of refugees, stretching back far
as the eye can see, worldly goods on their heads in great
bundles, being driven back at the border by guards who shoot,
whip those closest to the border
95 EXT: EASTERN CONGO VILLAGE - DAY 95
Scores of bodies being buried by NGOs, Red Cross personnel
working among the fields of burial in the tall bright green
grasses, wounded children, women and infants in makeshift
hospitals.
PRT 2-01:43:17:18
NARRATOR
Armed conflict, disease, forced
labor, starvation: the legacy of
Leopold's time still haunts the
Congo today.
JIM FREEDMAN
(DEVELOPMENT SPECIALIST)
The 3.4 million to 4 million people
who died as a result of the
conflict errs on the low side.
60.
(MORE)
And I think it's probably worth
making the same point for King
Leopold's time because the causes
of high mortality rates are pretty
much the same. The people who are
the victims are forced to bear the
provisioning of the armies who are
their victimizers. A child who was
born in some of these areas has
about a seventy percent chance of
dying.
96 EXT: BEAUTY SHOTS OF THE NEW ICC IN THE HAGUE - DAY 96
Groups of children, refugees, child soldiers, and a very
young girl.
NARRATOR,
There's been so much violence that
the newly created International
Criminal Court in the Hague has
chosen to focus on the Congo as its
first investigation.
97 EXT: A CHILD IN SILHOUETTE - DAY 97
Leopold’s grasping hand and imperious head.
M.M.
(NINE YEARS OLD)
I was heading to the bathroom
around 5 pm. I met Shabani. He sent
a boy to catch me and bring me to
him. He forced me into a room. I
was screaming. He pulled my clothes
off after taking off his own. He
bound my hands. And then he...
he...raped me.
98 EXT: - DAY 98
Statue of Stanley on his face in a makeshift soccer field, a
good game of barefoot soccer with the statue in the
background. Mobutu leaning against a doorjamb in the past,
watching PATRICE LUMUMBA being dragged off, Juliana’s mother
watches the truck taking him off to his death, Leopold’s
double LLs.
PRT 2-01:46:13:05
61.
JIM FREEDMAN (cont'd)
JULIANA LUMUMBA
(FORMER MINISTER OF CULTURE, CONGO)
More than 65% of our population is
younger than 15 years old, so even
those who are 30 today were not
around in the ‘60s, did not study
it in school...most people know the
names but when you ask them what
happened, most people do not know.
I do not know if Belgium has
offered apologies for the rubber
tragedy but...I know they
apologized concerning the
assassination of LUMUMBA to the
people of the Congo...and to my
family.
MONTAGE; OFFICIAL PHOTOGRAPHS OF THE ROYAL FAMILY IN THEIR
PALACE, IN THEIR GARDEN.
ANNICK DE VILLE
(ARCHITECTURAL HISTORIAN)
The royal family is a strange
subject in Belgium, quite
untouchable; one that hides and
protects itself and that never
appears in public debate.
I believe that it's really up to
the democratic system and up to the
parliament to shed some light -
it’s much stronger.
99 99
PRT 2-01:47:30:00
HONORÉ VINCK
(DIRECTOR, CENTRE AEQUATORIA, BRUSSELS)
But it must be done with a balanced
approach so as not to give the
impression that there were only
injustices, that there was only
killing. There were many other
things as well. And that is often
forgotten in debates that are
sometimes partisan to one side or
another.
62.
100 EXT: RIVER-SIDE FORMER COLONIAL MANSION - EVENING 100
Evening meal being cooked as women sit around and brood.
PRT 2-01:48:49:04
101 EXT - DAY 101
Young woman gazes out train window- people along the tracks
as the train moves, water in the Congo and a pirogue
struggling with the current, timber operation .
JULIANA LUMUMBA
It has been very difficult, and has
been very long and laborious to put
the country back on track. But if
we, the Congolese, ourselves do not
believe in it, I do not know who
will.
102 EXT: CONGO RIVER - DAY 102
Two women in river “drumming” the water. Children cavorting
in the river, laughing, squealing, a baby with his mom doing
laundry by the river.
JULIANA LUMUMBA
And I believe that in this country
there is not only wealth (right, it
does exist) but there are
especially people, there are human
resources that are extraordinary
and I believe in that. And we
know, we have to work to make it
come true.
The sun setting over the vast river, young men casting
fishing nets into the roiling waters, a pirogue being
peacefully rowed, the gold touched cataracts of Isle des
Mimosa
PRT 2-01:50:09:14
63.
ECU: The great, anguished lions of Brussels, the ship
graveyard of the Congo River, the oil platforms and fires of
Cabinda, the ruins of Gbadolite, the landscape of the Congo,
the skeletons of colonial trains, disconsolate figures of
Congolese, an oil concession helicopter, a giant oil tanker
disappearing up a canal, pirogue in the foreground, as a
young boy worriedly watches the sun set over the tumultuous
river. The litany of the portraits echoing the opening
sequence and the ARCH OF THE SEVERED HANDS.
PRT 2-01:50:40:00
FATHER HONORÉ VINCK
Biembaka, killed by the gun;
Etaleaoso, his brother- killed by the gun;
A MAN / A WOMAN (DROWNING OUT VINCK)
Efolokozambeyo, Man- killed by the gun;
Lekoka, Boy- killed by the gun;
Majangu, Man- killed by the gun;
Ifeka, Girl- killed by the gun;
Akaba, Man- killed by the gun.
103 CARD: 103
The first election since 1960 finally took place in 2006.
Joseph Kabila was confirmed as President for a five-year
term. The violence in the nation has diminished but has not
stopped. Outside powers continue to exploit the DRC’s vast
Riches. Outside powers continue to exploit the DRC’s vast
riches.
The film is dedicated to The People of The Democratic
Republic of the Congo.
THE END
64.

© 2013 Journeyman Pictures
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