There were the austerity protests in September that I helped to cover for Reuters, which at times seemed more like a street festival than a protest. They served wurst, sauerkraut and beer. As you walked, the music transitioned from country to country, language to language and style to style.
The French protests of October were not as easy going. They shut down transportation and caused fuel shortages. Students ditched school. Some protests turned violent with stores being looted and cars set on fire.
Even soccer turns out the crowds and the police in riot gear.
Today, I went out to cover the Modo Fashion Trail (the topic of my next post). The bus was packed. We only got two stops past where I picked it up when the bus had to stop and the bus driver told everyone to get off. At least, that's what I inferred based on what followed and my non-existent French. Police blocked the road. More police in riot gear stood ready.
The king privately owned the Congo until 1908 when the Belgian government assumed control. Under Leopold's rule, terrible crimes were committed against the Congolese, and its natural resources, including rubber, were exploited.