Zaire: Army on The Loose

Army on The Loose

Of all the African colonies that came to independence in the 1960s, few fared worse than the former Belgian Congo, now known as Zaire. The country endured army mutinies, civil wars, invasions and, through it all, 26 years of iron rule by President Mobutu Sese Seko. In due course, thanks in part to Zaire's copper wealth, Mobutu amassed billions of dollars, but he always took care to keep the army on his side -- until last week.

Furious because they were underpaid, soldiers mutinied in Kinshasa, looting and pillaging the capital, and civilians soon joined in. Belgium and France sent paratroops...

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