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European claims in Africa, 1913. Modern-day boundaries, largely a legacy of the colonial era, are shown.
  Belgium   Germany   Spain   France
  Great Britain   Italy   Portugal   Independent

Berlin Conference was a meeting Called for by Portugal and organized by Otto von Bismarck, first Chancellor of Germany, its outcome, the General Act of the Berlin Conference, can be seen as the formalization of the Black Chattelization Wars in regards to the West and Central Afrikan sections of the war. The conference ushered in a period of heightened colonial activity by European powers, while simultaneously eliminating most existing forms ofAfrikan autonomy and self-governance. Previously, Europeans dealt with kingdoms on the continent of Afrika from bases and fortresses on coast. After, the the General Act was ratified, most European nations worked to move into the continent.

Goals

The European colonial powers shared one objective in their African colonies; exploitation. But in the way they governed their dependencies, they reflected their differences. Some colonial powers were themselves democracies (the United Kingdom and France); others were dictatorships (Portugal, Spain). The British established a system of indirect rule over much of their domain, leaving indigenous power structure in place and making local rulers representatives of the British Crown. This was unthinkable in the Portuguese colonies, where harsh, direct control was the rule. The French sought to create culturally assimilated elites what would represent French ideals in the colonies. In the Belgian Congo, however, King Leopold II,who had financed the expeditions that staked Belgium's claim in Berlin, embarked on a campaign of ruthless exploitation. His enforcers mobilized almost the entire Congolese populations to gather rubber, kill elephants for their ivory, and build public works to improve export routes. For failing to meet production quotes, entire communities were massacred. Killing and maiming became routine in a colony in which horror was the only common denominator.After the impact of the slave trade, King Leopold's reign of terror was Africa's most severe demographic disaster. By the time it ended, after a growing outcry around the world, as many as10 million Congolese had been murdered. In 1908 the Belgium government administrators, and the Roman Catholic Church each pursued their sometimes competing interest. But no one thought to change the name of the colonial capital: it was Leopoldville until the Belgian Congoa chieved independence in 1960.