Patrice Lumumba (1925-61) is perhaps the most famous leader of the African independence movement. After his execution in 1961, when he had been prime minister of the newly-liberated Congo for only seven months, he became an icon of anti-imperialist struggle. As the news came out, his picture was brandished in demonstrations in capitals around the world, along with Che Guevara and Mao Zedong. His life and the independence that he sought for the Congo made him a pivotal figure of the 20th century, highlighting ongoing Western colonialism and the problematic nature of the independence granted to huge swathes of the globe after 1945. In this book, revised and updated to include new thinking on the Congo crisis and incorporating material recently released from British intelligence archives, Leo Zeilig tells the story of the Congo in the dying days of colonialism, and of Lumumba’s transition from nationalist to revolutionary to international symbol of African liberation.