Philip Gourevitch, an Accessory to Mass Murder and Genocide in Central Africa?

Philip Gourevitch, award winning writer on Rwanda is on the defensive, peddling, spinning, attempting to find his way out of a web he’s woven around himself. One can’t tell right off the bat how he’s trapped himself or why he should feel the need to untangle himself.  But peddle he does, and spin he does as he defends himself against Tristan McConnell’s damning portrayal of his 15 year spin, excusing, justifying, and rationalizing crimes against humanity, oppressive dictatorship, and various other human rights violations committed by Kagame and the RPF/A.

It seems that Gourevitch found it inconvenient to acknowledge the acts of terrorism committed by Kagame and RPF/A, nor did he find it necessary to hold Kagame and the RPF/A responsible for it, as journalists so often do. And now he’s claiming, he’s not in Kagame’s pockets, peddling Kagame’s propaganda. Has he read his own work?

He did not find it convenient to inform the world, that Kagame and the RPF/A took up arms and killed and displaced Rwandan families for four years before the genocide or in what barbaric and heartless manner their deaths were carried out. Acknowledging that, and informing the world of such blasphemy would have thwarted his efforts of stigmatizing an entire group of people victimized by the same people he lauds, and would have meant that he would have had to report on the subsequent possible genocide that happened in the Congo. It was Philip Gourevitch who stigmatized aid organizations that provided aid to refugees in the Congo including food and water, after they survived Kagame’s terrorist organization’s (RPF) slaughter in Rwanda. Had Gourevitch had his way, the survivors of Kagame’s RPF’s slaughter, needed to have starved to death. How dare they retain life! And I’m not talking about the ostensible genocidaires (some of whom currently work for Kagame it turns out – Guest post coming soon!! ).

I suppose it is why Gourevitch found it satisfying that Kagame’s RPF followed them into the Congo, and slaughtered them. Why else would he have rationalized it, rather than calling international attention to it to be stopped? For Kagame to be deposed? But reporting on that, would have conflicted with the type of falsified image he was constructing, the one that elevated a terrorist organization to hero status, solidifying Kagame’s hold on the area, and on which Gourevitch has since benefited immensely both personally and professionally. And let me remind readers once again, that the slaughtered in the Congo, constituted majority women, children, and the elderly, according to the U.N.

In his response to Tristan, Gourevitch asserts that he reported on Kagame’s crimes. But rather, he defended Kagame with each key stroke, rationalized Kagame’s massive crimes against humanity, and defended Kagame’s rights to massively kill Rwandans and Congolese (reported by U.N. majority of whom were women, elderly, and childern), in the Congo. Even in his response to Tristan McConnell, Gourevitch attempts to minimize Kagame’s crimes, despite the overwhelming testimony and evidence, that Kagame has wrecked havoc in the Congo. Missing among the evidence and testimony, were Philip Gourevitch’s personal testimony of what he experienced on the ground, as he watched Kageme’s terrorist organization slaughter Rwandan refugees, and Congolese nationals while he dissuaded aid organizations from feeding them, exacerbating their demise. What he instead reported, was Kagame’s terrorist organization, exercise its justified right (according to Gourevitch and Kagame) to attack another country, and fight Kagame’s battles inside another country’s territory, and he was all too happy to report it, defend it, and inform the world about their organized and systemic killings, with a positive spin.

Can Philip Gourevitch effectively be considered an accessory to mass murder and genocide in Central Africa? How much damage has his award winning work done to the people of Central Africa? Is Philip Gourevitch truly interested in the people of Central Africa or his own prestige? If he is interested in the people, why does he continue to spin for Kagame, and to minimize Kagame’s crimes rather than facing them head on, and calling a spade a spade? Why does he resort to personal attacks of his critics, rather than their work? Why does he continue to undermine Kagame’s opposition and anyone who poses a real threat to not only Kagame’s falsified image (thanks Gourevitch!) but to Kagame’s power hold and an end to Kagame’s mass murder and impunity (thanks again Gourevitch!!)? And when will he finally, FINALLY, do the right thing, and put Kagame’s image, of which he is mostly responsible, in its proper context?

I wonder what Gourevitch was doing  between 1990 and 1994. Did he see Kagame’s RPF attack of a peaceful country as just another African tragic war that he did not need to get involved? Or did he not see a financial profitability opportunity? How would Gourevitch rationalize Kagame’s invasion of the Congo to the Congelese women and children? Would he convince them that they are genocidaires? Has Gourevitch come face to face with Kagame’s victims? Does he consider their stories to be unimportant enough to be told? Does he not wish to inform the world that their blight is important? That they matter? That Kagame should be brought to justice? What does Gourevitch say about the 6 million dead?

How much more will his upcoming book glorify Kagame at the expense of Central African people’s lives?

Stephen Kinzer to Kagame: Reconciliation, Confuses Human Rights Watchers

I can’t say that my little old blog had anything to do with it, but color me surprised! Stephen Kinzer is backtracking from his recent nonesensical tirade where he castigated human rights defenders and in particular Human Rights Watch for, wait for it….watching human rights in Rwanda!  Stephen Kinzer did not “lose the faith” because they were simply watching human rights and observing from a distance (perhaps with a nod of approval to top the watching?), but because they were watching, and documenting, and publicizing human rights violations committed by the Rwandan government against its people, and its neighbors.

A friend of the Rwandan leader, it makes sense that Stephen Kinzer would turn a blind eye to such massive crime as serious as crimes against humanity. How else would he maintain a good relationship standing with Kagame, and the continued sale of his book, A Thousand Hills: Rwanda’s Rebirth and the Man Who Dreamed It? But I did not expect him to stoop so low as to imply that colonialism, dictatorship, lack of democracy, state controlled media/journalism, repression, politically motivated incarceration and detention of critics, exiling of opponents, and other such privileges are not only good for Rwandans, but that they are a right which Human Rights Watch seems to be interfering with. With human rights champions like these…no wonder six million people are dead in the Congo, while writers sell books glorifying genocidaires and covering up for their crimes.

In a disingenuous attempt to deflect from his support of a genocidal regime, Stephen Kinzer backtracks on some of his statements, in a calculated and destructive way. Kinzer writes another article, claiming now, that the Rwandan leader is “authoritarian” because he refuses to listen to his former partners in crime (no pun intended) and fellow war criminals. Before this surprising piece of writing, Kinzer had claimed that “authoritarianism” is what Rwandans needed and in fact embraced it. But now, Kinzer claims Kagame should listen to these war criminals (at least certainly Kayumba Nyamwasa), because, wait for it….they used to work together and Kagame used to trust them. And because not listening to them, Kagame creates more enemies who are openly critical.

Did Kinzer seriously miss the part where Kagame waged a war on two three (we remember you too Uganda) different countries multiple times and committed possible genocide in one of the countries and arguably both? How enough is that to create enemies? It’s more important that Kagame listen to prominent opponents who used to work with him than the millions of voiceless victims and witness of Kagame’s brutality or other human rights defenders according to Kinzer. And it makes sense. Kagame’s fellow war criminals do carry his secrets after all, which they might spill, thereby exposing both Kagame for the crimes he committed, and Kinzer for his cover up.  It’s also the reason that rather than advocate for the release of  jailed “alleged” collaborators with terrorist groups like Victoire Ingabire, and genocide survivor and dissident Deo Mushayidi, Kinzer advises Kagame to rely on proven and indicted war criminals instead.

Does Kinzer truly have Rwandans in his mind and heart? Or is he mostly interested in the continued success of genocidaire Kagame, and the continued uninterrupted sales of his book? Kinzer makes no mention of Victoire Umuhoza or other political prisoners, makes no mention of murdered opposition candidate and independent journalists, makes no mention of the possible genocide in the Congo, but instead advises Kagame to reconcile with his fellow war criminals, because they are prominent, and he used to trust them.

Dear Stephen Kinzer, are you serious? You would trust Kayumba Nyamwasa, indicted by two different independent judicial systems for war crimes and crimes against humanity, to provide insight into democracy and recovery from war and genocide? You would trust Karegeya on matters of free states before trusting unfairly jailed Bernard Ntaganda, or Victoire Ingabire Umuhoza, a mother and peaceful resistant, and someone who has never committed crimes against humanity against anyone? You would advise Kagame to reconcile with other war criminals, at least cut their sentences short (by your implication that the sentences are “severe”) before reconciling with Deo Mushayidi who lost all his family members in the genocide? You would recommend Kagame take advice from top prosecutor, responsible for countless infractions in Rwanda, Gerald Gahima to be trusted with matters of reconciliation and democracy before Deo Mushayidi?

Really?

Are you serious?

Are you trying to help the people of Rwanda or did I miss something? You do realize that when some of these people worked with Kagame they were killing people right?

Is Stephen Kinzer Serious? Who is the REAL Imperialist?

It’s a sad day when backed into a corner, formerly credible journalists resort to shamelessly defending issues, causes, and people known to be destructive to humanity, especially when they have helped them get there. This is Stephen Kinzer’s job today when it comes to Rwanda. He helped construct the myth of a seraphic Kagame. But with mounting evidence against Kagame’s human rights violations record, Kinzer is scrambling to maintain the fallacy by any means necessary, even by going so far as to undermine human rights organizations. Kinzer knows he is defending a criminal. And as the criminal becomes more and more exposed and ostracized, Kinzer’s credibility as well as his pocket change are likely to take a hit.  What happens when a journalist finds himself in such a difficult situation? Does he do the morally sound thing and speak in unisom with the world’s most vulnerable population? Or does he continue to defend his criminal friend despite how irrational and blatantly imperialistic his defense may be?

In a recent article, Stephen Kinzer chose the latter. He informs us that he finally broke with the human rights community once they published and publicized Kagame’s crimes. Kinzer says:

The place where I finally broke with my former human-rights comrades was Rwanda.

Kinzer says that admiration from other dictators (referred to in the article as ‘other heads of states in africa’ ) and their attendance of Kagame’s inauguration are proof that Kagame is not a brutal repressive dictator. Either Kinzer forgot that Kagame was the biggest threat to democracy in his country at the run-up of the elections, or he supports the kind of sham election that excludes all viable opposition parties, imprisons opposition leaders, and exiles and murders independent journalists. Kinzer clarifies his position by informing readers of his support for this kind of repression from an African leader. Kinzer continues,

By my standards, this authoritarian regime is the best thing that has happened to Rwanda since colonialists arrived a century ago. My own experience tells me that people in Rwanda are happy with it, thrilled at their future prospects, and not angry that there is not a wide enough range of newspapers or political parties.

With a straight face he says that. He mis-characterizes what rights Rwanda’s been violating as justified since they were demanded in the context of “ethnicity,” disregarding the fact that any time Kagame and company are faced with any threat for democracy they reduce everything down to “ethnic” divisionism and imprison those who threaten them with  democratic ideals. Kinzer is okay with that. He also believes that instead of documenting human rights violations, Human Rights Watch should instead sycophantically praise Rwanda. It would be funny, if it weren’t so serious. Just ask this guy. Kinzer doesn’t believe the guy deserves his right to life as an opposition figure to Kagame.

Kinzer continues,

Human Rights Watch wants Rwandans to be able to speak freely about their ethnic hatreds, and to allow political parties connected with the defeated genocide army to campaign freely for power. (emphasis mine)

Kinzer is afraid of democracy in Rwanda. Democracy in Rwanda is a threat to Kagame, and a threat to Kagame is not only a threat to Kinzer’s credibility and pay check. Kinzer, so shamelessly imperialistic has the gall to say that by calling out human rights violations in Rwanda, Human Rights Watch is leading Rwanda on the path to another genocide instead. He forgets that Kagame is the one continuing his genocidal plan which he started 20 years ago.

It has come to this: all that is necessary for another genocide to happen in Rwanda is for the Rwandan government to follow the path recommended by Human Rights Watch.

But where was Stephen Kinzer in 1990 when Kagame attacked a peaceful nation and started a four year war that culminated in the genocide of 1994, and out for more blood, continued and committed genocide in the Congo? Where was Stephen Kinzer when the RPF violated the Arusha peace accords which would allow them to return to Rwanda peacefully, and campaign freely within the country as another political opposition party? This is the same right Kagame and Kinzer are denying other Rwandans who are doing it peacefully and not forcing a peace agreement by the gun unlike Kagame and the RPF. Where was Kinzer when the RPF assassinated two heads of states? Where was Kinzer when the RPF refused international intervention to stop the genocide and the war violence, but instead prolonged the conflict until they had secured the whole country? Where was Kinzer when the RPF and Kagame went into the Congo and committed genocide there? Where was Kinzer in 1996? 1998? 2000? And subsequent years when Kagame’s army ravished the Congo, with only the Congolese people as the real loser of each one of their incursions? Where was Kinzer when the UN released a mapping report documenting the most serious human rights  violations in the Democratic Republic of Congo between 1993 and 2003, where an alleged possible genocide was committed by Rwandan troops?

And most importantly, where is Kinzer today? Where is his altruistic non colonial and non imperialistic proclivities for defending human rights instead of businesses? I have not seen Kinzer speak out on behalf of Congolese. Instead he defends Kagame’s right to deny others rights, and to violate their human rights, and commit crimes against humanity against them.

Is Kinzer really interested in human rights? Or is he interested in human rights violations profit? He praises the most recent Human Rights Watch appointment because it’s “potentially” one that will remain silent on Kagame’s crimes. Kinzer is happy with Rwandans living under a dictatorship, without any ability to express their free political will, nor their right to oppose the opposition, or the right to express their thoughts and ideas on political repression. According to Kinzer and his western prescriptions, lowering their standards, demanding less from an oppressor is not only good for Rwandans, it is RIGHT.

And somehow, in this twisted world we live in, Human Rights Watch is the imperialist, according to altruistic and benevolent human rights defenders like Kinzer.

A Look Back on 2010 – A Damning Year for Kagame

2010 was a quiet year for Back To My Roots, but a damning one for Kagame and his cronies. Time after time, and location after location criminal Kagame was challenged, discredited, and outright humiliated. 2010 was very much a damning year for Kagame, and one can only be filled with glee at the prospects of 2011. I can’t promise that blogging will be more regular, but it should be a good year to challenge the Kagame & Co narrative about what happened in Rwanda, who was responsible for what, and who is getting away with murder. The world now knows what Kagame did in Congo, and it’s only a matter of time before the establishment of Rwanda narrative, and the discovery by many, and the acknowledgment of institutions of Kagame & Co’s substantial crimes against humanity.

Earlier in the year, Kagame’s biggest thorn in his side touched down in Kigali. And since then, it’s been nothing but a downward spiral for Kagame. A self-identified Hutu, Victoire Ingabire Umuhoza went to challenge Kagame and the RPF for the presidency of Rwanda. She was attacked by a mob, had her goods stolen (and returned), and her party was prevented from registering to take part in the elections. She was put on house arrest, and was subsquently placed in a maximum security prison, where she remains today. The other presidential hopeful, Bernard Ntaganda of the party PS-Imberakuri was also arrested, along with dissident Deo Mushayidi. Left and right news papers were closed down, writers, editors, and publishers exiled, and even murdered. An American law professor and ICTR lawyer was arrested in Rwanda but eventually released due to diplomatic pressures. He is now wanted back in Rwanda “Dead or Alive.’ Eventually, an “election” did take place, where Kagame of RPF ran against himself and won against himself with a 93% of the vote. In a bizarre move, a war crimes prosecutor, attended his inauguration, and not for reasons you might expect, but to attempt to gather heads of states against another African war criminal. Among his other bizarre and ironic guests were Congolese President Kabila. And that was all just inside Rwanda.

Though Rwanda, Kagame, and the RPF were being reckless (a very generous term) within the country, the story abroad was another matter. When Kagame visited a Oklahoma Christian University in the USA he was not only met with demonstrators, but was served with a lawsuit for his crimes in Rwanda and Congo.  He allegedly had to take a back door route to get into the university due to the demonstrators. When he visited Spain in the middle of the Summer, the Prime Minister of Spain Zapatero not only refused to meet with him but he was met with a crowd of protesters as well. In August, a UN Mapping Report document the most serious violations to take place in the Democratic Republic of Congo between 1993 and 2003 was leaked to the press. The Report alleged that Rwandan troops may have committed “possible genocide” within DRC during that period. The same report was later released in October, alleging the same crimes. In September, a Spanish delegation arrived to protest Kagame’s Millenium Goals co-chairship with the Spanish president Zapatero. When he went to Europe for the European Development Days, Kagame was met with a fervor of protestors, passionately demonstrating against his crimes in crimes in Central Africa. Kagame was so humiliated he left without giving his planned speech. The Netherlands withheld their aid from Rwanda, driving home the point that it is not alright for criminals to be rewarded. And finally, a French judge filed charged against Kagame’s allies.

It was a quiet year for Back To My Roots, but a very big one for hits against Kagame, his army, and his party’s reputation, integrity, and credibility. The furor is abundant. And though he continues to receive support from his western “friends” their blind support only serves to reinforce their complicity in his crimes.

Here is to an even stronger year ahead for progress against Kagame’s RPF their associates. It’s a lot of work, but the momentum is building.

Related: 2008 Year in Review

Kagame Slated to Execute Election Charades Successfully for World Wide Audience

For anyone wondering, the online dictionary.com defines ‘charades’ by one such definition:

a blatant pretense or deception, esp. something so full of pretense as to be a travesty.

Can anyone truly argue that such an event is what is slated to take place in Rwanda on August 9th, 2010? Some are calling it an “election” while others are simply calling it a “sham” election to signify the false pretense under which this event is happening.

To be frank, there are no election happening in Rwanda. It’s a charades, where everyone will play their part, some voluntarily – dictator Kagame as the landslide winner (a resounding cheery yessss from the ghosts of millions perished by his gun and rule – note sarcasm) with unwavering support from involuntary “supportive” citizens, while the “opposition” take their place, and somberly accept their “loss.” Does one even need popcorn to enjoy this charades? Perhaps Kagame will throw in a few more assassinations and jailing of legitimate opponents to make it more interesting. Maybe he’ll up the ante and actually target a non Rwandan, non African, non Black person. But as it stands, worldwide audiences will watch him “win” and he’ll feign surprise that after all this time and his crimes, his citizens still love him. A humbling experience for a man like himself (who can claim more deaths on his hands in such a short period of time as himself?).

Like every good charades, the August 9th event is meant to entertain. But for Kagame, it’s also meant to re-establish him as the only candidate for Rwandans within the international community. The media will be there, ready to accept and to convince the world that the charades truly is reality. And many will buy into it, giving Kagame blind and loyal support, without an sense of the destruction he’ll cause on top of what he’s already done.

That citizens will be forced to leave their homes and cast ballots for their oppressor in record numbers is sadistic at best and torture at worst. But to allow them their dignity and human rights, at least by abstaining from casting votes “for” the murderer that destroyed their lives and killed their family members would be an inconvenience to the successful execution of the charades for the entertainment of the world wide audience.

Though I’m not tuning in for the charades (I already know what happens and how), I’ll be here the following day, playing my part, feigning surprise that Kagame won once again and that his citizens truly do love him (note sarcasm).

Rwanda: Conspiracy to Commit Genocide, Important Missing Puzzle Piece

The crime of “genocide” is defined in Articles II and III of the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide , which was adopted by “Resolution 260 (III) A” of the United Nations General Assembly on December 9th, 1948.

Article II describes two elements of the crime of genocide:

1) the mental element, meaning the “intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such”,

and

2) the physical element which includes five acts described as follow:

(a) Killing members of the group;
(b) Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group;
(c) Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part;
(d) Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group;
(e) Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group.

Article III describes five punishable forms of the crime of genocide:

(a) Genocide;
(b) Conspiracy to commit genocide;
(c) Direct and public incitement to commit genocide;
(d) Attempt to commit genocide;
(e) Complicity in genocide.

The International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) has a mandate to prosecute serious crimes committed in Rwanda from January 1st, 1994 to December 31st, 1994, including crimes of genocide, but also crimes of conspiracy to commit genocide.

However, up to date, the collection of evidence to establish the later crime remains unsolved puzzle for the Prosecutor of the ICTR as shown by judgments in the Military-I trial on December 18, 2008: The Prosecutor versus Theoneste Bagosora et al., Case No. ICTR-98-41-T.

With regard to the elements underpinning the allegation of planning and conspiracy, the ICTR concluded that “Accordingly, the Chamber is not satisfied that the Prosecution has proven beyond reasonable doubt that the four Accused conspired amongst themselves, or with others to commit genocide before it unfolded on 7 April 1994”. (Case No. ICTR-98-41-T, Para. 2114).

Indeed, all four defendants (Col. Theoneste Bagsosora, Gen. Gratien Kabiligi, Col. Anatole Nsengiumva and Major Aloys Ntabakuze) were found “not guilty” of all counts charging conspiracy to commit genocide, based on the Chambers ruling that their actions prior to April 6, 1994 were based on war-time conditions, not planning to kill civilians or to carry out a genocide against Tutsi Rwandans.

Please find here additional valuable documentations with regard to this topic.

More details on how the ICTR reached this important conclusion can also be found in the following excerpts of Case No. ICTR-98-41-T, from p.504 to p.508.

“2098. Turning now to the elements underpinning the allegation of planning and conspiracy, the Prosecution acknowledges that its case is principally circumstantial. 2321 There are only a few alleged meetings which could be characterised as planning genocide. The allegations instead refer, among other things, to statements made by the Accused, their affiliation with certain clandestine organisations, general warnings, of which some were circulated publicly, that the Interahamwe or groups with the military were plotting assassinations and mass killings, and their role in the preparation of lists as well as the arming and training of civilians. Most of the components of the planning have been extensively considered in other parts of the judgment (III.2). However, the Chamber finds it useful to briefly recapitulate the
findings on the events, which the Prosecution has highlighted in its Closing Brief and oral submissions, and view them together in the legal context of an allegedconspiracy. 2322 The Chamber has nonetheless also taken into account the evidencerelated to the other events not specifically referred to by the Prosecution. Continue reading

Message to Kagame: Stop Dancing Puppet, We Can See Through Your Smoke and Mirrors

gravatarIn December 2008, a very special occurrence happened that led Kagame into scrambling to do major damage control, distract the world at large from the occurrence, while simultaneously salvaging his progressively deteriorating reputation in “the international community.”

What occurrence is that you might ask? It’s none other than the conviction of the top three major suspects in the Rwandan Genocide. You know, the masterminds of the genocide that Kagame supposedly saved everyone from. You know, this:

The three other defendants were convicted of responsibility for particular acts that the Chambers found were committed by members of the Rwandan military.  Col. Theoneste Bagsosora and Col. Anatole Nsengiumva were found guilty of war crimes, acts of genocide and crimes against humanity committed by Rwandan troops under their command. Major Aloys Ntabakuze, whose command was limited to the Para-Commando Battalion was held responsible for three incidents out of more than 40 that the Chamber found were not proved. Many of the crimes of which all three were convicted do not appear in the indictments under which they were prosecuted.  All three were sentenced to life in prison and have announced plans to appeal.

Yet here is Kagame today desperately scrambling to do major damage control to salvage his growing reputation in the Congo by making shady deals with his former foe, Kabila instead of simply celebrating. Why would the arrest of the three genocide planners and perpetrators cause Kagame to behave in such a manner?And what exactly did he do in the Congo that reeks of desperation and reputation recovery?

It’s not so much that the three were convicted, but what they were not charged with. It turns out that,

judgments in the Military-I trial completely rejected the Prosecution theory of long-term planning and conspiracy to commit genocide by members of the former Rwandan military leadership. All four defendants were found “not guilty” of all counts charging conspiracy to commit genocide, based on the Chambers ruling that their actions prior to April 6, 1994  were based on war-time conditions, not planning to kill civilians or to carry out a genocide against Tutsi Rwandans.

I have bolded, italicized, and underlined that which was found, and which has ripped Kagame from his comfy dictatorial throne in Rwanda and thrown him into the war torn Congo scrambling, where he is desperately trying to influence some positive coverage on his behalf as the cushy world he built around himself with pervasive propaganda slowly but progressively falls to dust and pieces on the ground.

Because if no one planned the genocide, or the people originally believed to have planned the genocide are found innocent of such a plan, then where does that leave Kagame? It leaves him in a pickle I would say,

This raises the more profound question: if there was no conspiracy and no planning to kill ethnic civilians, can the tragedy that engulfed Rwanda properly be called “a genocide” at all? Or, was it closer to a case of civilians being caught up in war-time violence, like the Eastern Front in WWII, rather than the planned behind-the-lines killings in Nazi death camps? The ICTR judgment found the former.

The Court specifically found that the actions of Rwandan military leaders, both before any after the April 6, 1994 assassination of former Rwandan President Juvenal Habyarima, were consistent with war-time conditions and the massive chaos brought about by the four-year war of invasion from Uganda by Gen. Paul Kagame’s RPF army, which seized power in July 1994.

Although the Chamber did not specifically mention more recent events, it is worth noting that this is the same government that was named in a UN Security Council commissioned report on December 12, 2008 as having invaded the eastern Congo (with Uganda) in 1996 and again in 1998 and have occupied an area 15-times the size of Rwanda since that time. Similar UN Security Council reports in 2001, 2002 and 2003, make clear that Rwanda and Uganda’s economic rape of the eastern Congo, and the resulting 6 million-plus civilian deaths, have long been an “open secret.”

It’s no secret that in recent times Kagame was having trouble with some of his former supporters, such as Human Rights Watch’s Alison Des Forge, as she sought to hold him accountable for the atrocities he was committing in the Congo. Instead of just.stopping., Kagame BANNED Alison Des Forge from Rwanda. Yeah…he did. Not just for crimes in the Congo, but Human Rights Watch was also demanding that the ICTR start prosecuting the RPF and their involvement in the Rwandan Genocide; an act so radical it took 14 years to accomplish.

So what would happen if the ICTR investigated the RPF and prosecuted them for their involvement in the Genocide? What would the world learn from this? If they saved everyone from Genocide, wouldn’t that mean that they would get minimal prosecution for the supposed “reprisal killings” they carried out? Or is there something more awaiting them?

Well simply put, if Kagame were to be investigated, indicted, and prosecuted, the world would learn that he initiated a major war crime and crime against humanity towards Rwanda; attacking a peaceful country and throwing it into a war. It would also be discovered that during that whole period, Kagame and the RPF committed massacre after massacre, and multiple crimes against humanity. The RPF shot down Rwanda’s former president Habyarimana’s plane, an act believed to have sparked the carnage that occurred in 1994.  And remember this carnage was not planned since many were responding to war time conditions and defenses as was found by the ICTR. It would be discovered that Kagame and the RPF chased Rwandan citizens from their country and into the Congo. Kagame and the RPF continued their aggression thereby committing another crime against humanity by attacking the Congo, another peaceful country. It would be discovered that in the RPF’s  attempts to exterminate the Refugees, about six million Congolese citizens were caught in the crossfire. (And this list is hardly exhaustive!)

Because it was found that genocide was not planned from inside Rwanda itself, Kagame and the RPF’s insistence that they are after “planners” of the Rwandan genocide by going into the Congo is problematic. In fact it allows Kagame and the RPF to continue committing massacres and killing millions of people with impunity. IF these people did not plan a genocide, and the ICTR prosecutions say they did not, and there was a war initiated and carried out by the RPF against them going on, then what grounds does Kagame have to go after them? Either by removing them or by exterminating them?

True, RPF propaganda is pervasive, and major western media outlets support this propaganda. Which is why many people believe that the FDLR is composed of savage killers who terrorize Congolese citizens. But now, the world must question why these people who fled from a war they were defending themselves against, are now believed to be random and senseless killers for no reason. It does not match. What would lead them to commit massacres against the Congolese people, if they were fleeing from an enemy that ousted them from their homes? They wouldn’t, unless they were blood thirsty murderers who commit murder just to see blood shed. And while Kagame and the RPF would like to you to believe that, it is not completely true.

Kagame can no longer comfortably hold his immunity. Nor can the RPF. It’s becoming increasingly clear that the RPF is responsible for the murders in the Congo, even with the help of western media that insists Kagame is a hero. People still know and see through the painted veils through which he is presented. Kagame’s major lackey, Laurent Nkunda started receiving unprecedented negative media attention, and compounded with everything else that was happening, he needed to be beheaded, figuratively speaking. So, he was arrested. Try as they might, Kagame will have a very difficult time distancing himself from Nkunda.

As his world crumbles, and as the world learns, and increasingly pressure involved parties to hold Kagame and the RPF accountable for their crimes in the Great Lakes Region of Africa, Kagame strikes a very shady deal with Kabila, to once again, oust the FDLR.  These are people who are part of the same refugees that Kagame ousted when he invaded Rwanda and killed its president. They desire nothing more than to go back to their own formerly peaceful country.

Does it strike anyone in “the international community” as odd that Kagame and the RPF, indicted by two countries, France and Spain, whose top aid was arrest per the said arrest warrants in Germany, is the peace keeping force in the Congo? How does, Rwanda’s 10+,- years occupation in the Congo resulting in 6 million deaths, conveniently blamed on the FDLR who are part of refugees from Rwanda, qualify Rwanda to REMOVE that which they have not managed in 10 years? Does it make sense?

Put all the pieces together and you will see, that Kagame and the RPF, war criminals, genocide perpetrators are attempting to distract the world away from their bloodshed, while simultaneously continuing the same dirty, and criminal bloodshed.

This has got to stop!