30 April 2024

Dag Hammarskjöld - UN Hero?

Diplomacy in Africa

What influence did Dag Hammarskjöld have on the continent?

Logo for Verden Kalder podcast

In a recent podcast produced by Radio4 titled ‘Verden Kalder’, Associate Professor Stig Jensen delves into the history surrounding Dag Hammarskjöld, in light of the recently released movie about his life. Stig speaks about Hammarskjöld’s as Secretary General for UN role in DR Congo’s independence, especially in relation to the assassination of Congo’s first democratically elected president Patrice Lumumba and the following internal conflicts. During his time as the Secretary-General of the UN, Hammarskjöld defies major powers in an effort to create the UN peacekeepers, also referred to as his own personal army, in an effort to help decolonize Africa during the Cold War. His accomplishments have led to dissenting opinions on whether he was a diplomatic hero or a fool. To this day his death is still questioned as a potential assassination increasing the questions about his defiance of major powers and whether or not it had a role in his death. Ultimately, this podcast is meant to shed light on Hammarskjöld’s life with a special focus on UN’s role in the DR Congo conflict in the early 1960’s.

Listen to the full podcast here; in Danish.