Rwanda, 20 Years On: From Tragedy to Useful Imperial Fiction

ZERO ANTHROPOLOGY

By Robin Philpot*

rwanda_philpotApril 6, 2014 will mark the twentieth anniversary of the shooting down over Kigali of a plane carrying two African heads of state, Juvénal Habyarimana of Rwanda and Cyprien Ntaryamira of Burundi. We know that that terrorist crime—surely the worst of the 1990s—triggered unending war, destruction, and massacres in Rwanda and Congo. Yet it has never been elucidated and nobody has been brought to justice. Despite the wilful blindness and amnesia about the most critical crime in the Rwandan and Congolese tragedies, politicians, diplomats, pundits, intellectuals, and retired presidents, prime ministers and generals, constantly invoke “Rwanda” as though the word alone confers some supposed truth and moral authority on the political, military and imperial positions they defend. “Rwanda” has been used specifically to justify violent military “humanitarian” intervention in Libya, Sudan, Mali, Syria, and the Central African Republic. “Everywhere is Rwanda for the humanitarian imperialist,” noted Max…

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About rolandrjs

Progressive Political Activist, Attorney. Musician, Curious mind, Philosophy, Literature, Art, Nature, Wilderness, Wonder.
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