Lantos Foundation – the More Things Change, the More They Remain the Same

Posted: November 15, 2011 in Uncategorized
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The dismissive statement issued by Katrina Swett, the president of the Foundation, in regard to demands by many of the genocide survivors who lived the hell that was the Hôtel des Mille Collines in 1994 is not only unfortunate, but puts the credibility of the Lantos Foundation in a precarious situation.

Like many western ‘do gooders’ who seek to offer a hand in solving problems in Africa, Lantos Foundation has made decisions based on distorted information that is derived from a sad combination of stereotypes, ignorance and self-interest by public relations agents who earn a handsome cut from revenues generated from Rusesabagina’s public appearences. Such decisions that only serve to confirm biases towards Africa and particularly Rwanda in this case, serve no positive purpose; if at all that was the intention.

The Hollywood manufactured hero, that they are recognising, is no hero in Rwanda. The Rwandan people, and most importantly the genocide survivors know who saved them. You do not need to first sell your story to the western world to become a hero of the Rwandan people.

For long, Rusesabagina has traded in Genocide. Lantos and other organization that have decided to offer him a platform for his trade, will have history judge them harshly for trivializing the unfortunate history of the Rwandan people, as the Foundation seeks perpetuate a fraud .

That the Lantos Foundation can never entertain the idea of presenting the award to a Nazi sympathiser, is a sad commentary to the fact that the more things change, the more they remain the same…


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