Posts Tagged ‘Democracy’

By: William G. Thom

INTRODUCTION

The overthrow of Zaire’s President Mobutu Sese Seko, for 31 years a fixture of political dominance in central Africa, in an eight month military campaign, was a shocking development. To understand the downfall of Mobutu’s Zaire, an appreciation of both the military realities and the regional political dynamics of the 1990s is required. Further, this article will make the case that the war in Zaire, now the Democratic Republic of Congo (DROC), fits into the fabric of evolving patterns of military conflict in sub-Saharan Africa that have unfolded during the era of independence. (more…)

By Tom Ndahiro

On April 8, 2004, as part of the 10th commemoration of the Tutsi genocide in Rwanda, the President of the International Crisis Group (ICG) Gareth Evans and Stephen Ellis, ICG’s Africa Program Director published an article with a title:  ‘The Rwandan Genocide: Memory Is Not Enough’[1] The article reminds: “Each time such an atrocity happens, we look back wondering, with varying degrees of incomprehension, horror, anger and shame, how we could have let it all happen. And then we let it happen all over again.” The two authors maintain that something more than memory is required if another cataclysmic genocide was not to happen, sooner or later somewhere in world. They recommend “effective action” and also reiterated “the need for vigilance is nowhere greater than in Africa, where a genocidal ideology is far from dead, particularly in Central Africa.” (more…)

By: Tom Ndahiro

Introduction

Between April and July 1994, the world tried to ignore the annihilation of Tutsi in Rwanda. Today, it is impossible for anyone to forget the genocide. In particular, for survivors – those I call “living victims” – the genocide is a daily reality: it stole their friends and relatives, their plans and aspirations, and continues to haunt them. Raphael Lemkin argued that genocide is coordinated plans to destroy the essential foundations of the life of a group so that it withers and dies like a plant that has suffered blight. Genocide is a crime against all of humankind; against all notions of human civilisation. But it is also a deeply personal crime committed against individuals who re-live the memories of the genocide like a vicious, recurring nightmare. Survivors remain victims of the perpetrators, many of whose ongoing preoccupation is to alter or erase the world’s memory of the genocide. (more…)

By Tom Ndahiro

The moment the mass murder of 1994 ended, the killers, switched tactics to killing the truth of what they had done and plotting their return to power.  It is important to keep this in mind when assessing critiques of democracy and governance in Rwanda today.

Genuine critics are important to the proper running of the country but there are others who utilise critique as a strategy to bring the genocidal program of Hutu Power back to legitimacy.  They assume the dress of democrats, hiding their blades and their murderous intentions.  Theirs is a strategy that was fashioned soon after the genocide. (more…)