By Kevin A. Spooner
In 1960 the Republic of Congo teetered close to cave in as its first executive struggled to deal with civil unrest and mutinous military. whilst the UN demonstrated a peacekeeping operation to house the situation, the Canadian executive confronted a tough selection. may still it aid the intervention? by way of providing one of many first specified money owed of Canadian involvement in a UN peacekeeping venture, Kevin Spooner finds that Canada’s involvement used to be now not a walk in the park: the Diefenbaker executive had quick and ongoing reservations in regards to the undertaking, reservations that problem loved notions of Canada’s dedication to the UN and its prestige as a peacekeeper.
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Extra resources for Canada, the Congo Crisis, and UN Peacekeeping, 1960-64
22 Even as the colony edged closer and closer to the breaking point, the European residents still failed to appreciate the root causes of native discontent – paternalistic colonial policies and demeaning living conditions. Trade Commissioner Nyenhuis was equally late coming to this realization and seemed to share the views of other whites living in the Congo. Indeed, the Belgian Congo was often seen as a model colony. The Congolese standard of living was said to be among the highest of all colonized Africans.
In their decision to focus on the colony’s long-term political goals, the Belgians failed to appreciate that the seeds of discontent were being sown in segregated quarters of the cities. When riots broke out with some frequency in 1959, it became apparent that race relations were not as rosy as had been thought. European families resented the incorporation of the subject of African culture into the school curriculum, for both white and black students. K. Nyenhuis, the Canadian trade commissioner at the time, concurred with the Europeans.
He was prominent in the Mouvement National Congolais, the only political party that could ever truly claim to be national in membership in the early years of the Congo’s independence. Independence movements in other African countries inﬂuenced Lumumba’s nationalism; unlike Kasavubu, he opposed tribalism and federalism in favour of a centralized, socialist, and unitary state similar to Ghana. Although once jailed for his political activities, Lumumba did attend the Round Table Conference in Belgium, and it was there that he came to prominence as the leading Congolese political ﬁgure.
Canada, the Congo Crisis, and UN Peacekeeping, 1960-64 by Kevin A. Spooner