In short, Leopold said he wanted to help the Africans, but he truly wanted to exploit them. King Leopold attempted to describe his intentions in Congo as philanthropic to the international community. Using the racism that was common in the 19th Century, Leopold describes a people in this rain forest region that were incapable of caring for themselves. He claims to be able to protect the Africans from Arab slave runners. Leopold also feels that the region is to be converted to Christianity and opened for capitalist development. He is able to convince other imperialist powers to operate Congo as his own private plantation. Using military tactics and brutal enforcement of his policies, Leopold made the entire population his private slaves. He forced them to harvest rubber until there was none left, all to personally benefit himself. It has been estimated that Leopold was responsible for ten million deaths in the Congo.