The Belgian Enquiry
DOI link for The Belgian Enquiry
The Belgian Enquiry book
After denouncing Leopold personally – 'absolute monarchs have to bear personally the responsibility for the direction they impose on governmental activity'. F. Cattier concluded that the clear and indisputable truth is that the Congo State is not a colonising state, it is barely a state at all: it is a financial enterprise. Cattier also had some harsh things to say about the Catholic missionaries in the Congo: For thirteen years the missionaries have seen the labour tax system applied around them, with all its consequences. Shortly after the publication of Cattier's book, the Belgian Parliament debated yet another motion put down by Emile Vandervelde. Following Cattier's lead in demanding Belgian annexation, he succeeded for the first time in attracting wide support among Liberals and Catholics. This encouraged Beernaert to move that Parliament should immediately examine the Bill of 7 August 1901, which would provide the legal framework for a Belgian takeover.