Saturday, July 10, 2010

The Queen's Congolese Diamonds

The story is getting around the webs about the controversy surrounding some gifts given to Queen Paola from President Joseph Kabila of the country previously known as the Belgian Congo. Royalty in the News has the details and this is my comment. To me it does not really matter what exactly the Queen was given. The point is that they were gifts. I am sure the people who are being critics now would be just as critical if she had not accepted them. How could she even have done that? If someone gives you a gift you do not throw it back in their face. She would be criticised all around the world for being rude if she did such a thing. If the gifts were too expensive to afford for the Congolese government then Kabila should not have given them. But this is all a distraction anyway, something meant to cause trouble for the Belgian monarchy just because everyone gets so uptight when they hear the words "Belgium" and "Congo" in the same phrase. Whatever the cost of the jewels or watch or whatever it was, obviously they were already in the gift of President Kabila so it is not as though this money was robbed from someone just to benefit the Queen Paola (who has handed them over to the government in any event). Kabila had already got them by some means or another and they were his to give away or keep, if there was any wrongdoing in their acquisition that was already done a long time ago and had nothing to do with the Royal Family who could not have known and would surely never be so outrageous as to ask a host leader where he got them or how much they were worth. So this is just ridiculous and an absurd effort to find some way to be critical of Queen Paola and the Royal Family. Once again we see the media blaming the royalty first rather than the independent government of the former colony who are never held responsible for anything.


  1. This story cannot be used against Queen Paola or the Monarchy. Precious gift will never end up in the Queen's private collection, but they belong to the state - even if she might wear these jewellery, which I doubt.

    This is the big difference to the diamonds that Central Africa's Bokassa presented French president Valéry Giscard (d'Estaing - to mention his false aristocratic "title"). He kept the diamonds and was not willing to hand them over to the French republic.

  2. Yes, these exchanges are like from one country to another country. If the Queen had refused or asked rude questions about them affording the gift it would have been seen as an insult by Belgium to the whole of the Congo. This is media people just looking for something to be critical of.