King Leopold II used slave labor and torture on Africans in order to get raw materials to shape his fortune. He also killed over 10 million people during the time that he ruled, and is mainly spoken amongst people for his killings and his involvement in the East African slave trade. He is the second King of Belgium, his father being the foremost. Leopold always believed that overseas colonies were the key to success for the Belgian empire. This resulted in the Berlin Conference.This is when it all went bad for the Congo and is the main reason for why Leopold is remembered for being a killer and is compared to Adolf Hitler. Leopold II is the founder of the Congo Free State and is the deadliest dictator in the history of the world.
King Leopold II was a troubled little boy from the start. Leopold was born in Brussels, Belgium on April 9,1835. He is the son of Leopold I, the first king of the Belgians and his mother, Queen Louise-Marie who was not from Belgium. His cousins were both Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom and her husband Prince Albert. This meant that Leopold was born into royalty and that he would most likely became an important character in the history of Belgium. Since Leopold II was born, he was destined to take over the throne once his father died. This by itself is a lot of pressure for a kid to handle. This most likely was the first spark to why he was the deadliest dictator to ever live.
His childhood was not pleasant at all. One of the reasons for this is because his mother thought that his nose made him look deformed and his father spoke of him as “the little tyrant”. This especially made him very mad and disturbed. Growing up Leopold was also very shy and walked funny. While his brother Philippe was very nice and well known around Belgium. His sister was the charming and smart favorite child of their father. This was very rough because then Leopold was being compared to his siblings and his father throughout his whole life and never favorably. In 1846 Leopold was awarded with the title of Duke of Brabant and was appointed sub-lieutenant in the army. By the time when he was done with the army, he had reached the rank of lieutenant general. Then his mother died in the year of 1850, when Leopold was 15 years old. This put the boy down and made him very depressed. Now all he had was his father who didn't even like him and his siblings who outshined him.
Afterward in 1853 he married a woman named Marie Henriette in Brussels. Most people joked about this marriage, calling Leopold a “nun” and Marie a “stableman”. Later on Leopold was then made a member of the senate. During the time that he was a member, he took interest in matters involving the development and trade of Belgium. Also between the years of 1854 to 1865 Leopold travelled a lot, visiting India, China, Egypt, and the Mediterranean coast of Africa. Then on December 10th, 1865 Leopold I died. Leopold II then on December 17, 1865 succeeded his father as King.