Born in 1967 in Warwickshire, England, Tim Butcher was educated
at Oxford before embarking upon his career as a journalist for The Daily
Telegraph. Since then, he has covered such crises as the Balkan wars of the
1990s, the Allied invasion of Iraq in 2003, and Israel's 2006 struggle with
Hezbollah in Lebanon. When he was posted to Africa in 1990 as the paper's chief
war correspondent and Africa Bureau Chief, he grew eager to
understand the Congo River (formerly known as the Zaire River) through a personal odyssey. This odyssey was to become a dangerous solo six-week journey, overland and by river, from Lake
Tanganyika to Boma, close to where the river spews into the Atlantic.
The title, Blood River, speaks volumes for the history of the region that Butcher describes as 'Africa's broken heart.' Interweaving anecdotes and historical accounts from earlier colonial ...
The Congo River
In many places The Congo is as turbulent and mysterious as the history of the countries that it runs through. Even tying down seemingly basic facts such as its length are difficult, but roughly speaking it is about 2,920 miles long, which makes it the second longest river in Africa after the Nile. It travels through a number of countries during its journey to the Atlantic Ocean, but the majority of its length is spent within or bordering the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
The Congo River is one of the most voluminous in the world (most sources say it is second to the Amazon) discharging in the region of 1.5 million cubic feet of water per second. Because its watershed drains from both the Northern and Southern Hemispheres its flow is relatively stable all year because part of its watershed is always in the zone of rain.
The river ...
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