I want to react to James Tasamba’s article about the issue of extradition of Rwandan criminals from Kenya, and any other nation for that matter.
Many of those who make the decisions on extradition have never lost a single relative to genocide or injustice. So how can you honestly then expect them to understand (or sympathise with) Rwandans concerns?
A motto I’ve heard is that “the best defence is always offence”. Israel has always practised this motto when dealing with its genocide history.
Israel has a Constitutional provision that permits the pursuit of genocidaires irrespective of national boundaries. Mossad agents track down genocide fugitives around the world and when a host government refuses to expedite the genocide trial the Mossad then kidnaps and ships the genocide fugitive back to Israel.
The most famous example is Adolf Eichmann who was “lifted” out of Argentina and faced a televised trial in Jerusalem in 1960.
Such daring operations are fuelled by your concerns today -- victims and eyewitnesses need to see justice within their lifetime.
And where no ‘lifting’ is possible, then Israel carries out summary ‘justice’. Such drastic action carries a strong message: Think carefully before acting against innocent people because we will hunt and find the perpetrators.
Rafi Eitan, the Mossad man who grabbed Adolf Eichmann, recalls being recognised by a New York taxi driver. The taxi-man hugged him and would not take his fare money.
The man kept on shouting, “the Hand of God was with you, we have been praying for years.” It turned out that both the man and Rafi Eitan had originally come from the same village in Poland and their close relatives were among the many Polish Jews killed in death camps.
Effective justice is always that personal.
This persistent “Hand of GOD” is still working: This week started with the dramatic arrest of Ildephonse Nizeyimana, who ordered the execution of eighty year old Queen Rosalie Gicanda among many other innocent people in Butare.
Think about all the survivors now scattered around the world, who have been persistently praying for this since 1994.
Soon it will be our turn to hug the Interpol/Ugandan agents who made this dramatic arrest and shout: “the Hand of God was with you, in memory of a brave Queen who did not abandon her nation despite much provocation”.
The rest of the fugitives are going to face justice, one-by-one, just wait and see and do not give up hope.