BELGIUM: Mixing Delay and Haste

Most of the nation was at lunch, but in their restaurants and homes Belgians fell silent as the youthful voice, how and then shaking slightly with emotion, came over the radio. Later, 4,200 miles away in Léopoldville, blacks and whites heard the same words blaring over the loudspeakers of sound trucks. Lean, spectacled King Baudouin had taken it upon himself to explain in person his government's long-awaited program to give independence to the Congo, that vast land 80 times the size of Belgium, that was once his great granduncle's personal fief. Only a week before, nationalists had...

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