This is the fourth of a series of articles we shall be bringing you everyday from the Committee of Intelligence and Security Services of Africa, in their concerted desire to fight the genocide ideology from the world in general.
The planning of the Genocide consisted in putting in place all the instruments that would allow total control of the national life.
Such tools included:
The Akazu network which was also known as Zero Network: group of trusted people in whom the family of the president would confide all secrets and who would be regularly given privilege to live at ease. This network intervened in all public and private nominations;
State-party structures: The state-party was structured in such a way that communication from top to bottom was direct and efficient;
Training of militia: Militia able to handle both modern and traditional weapons were recruited and given regular training;
Formation of a national army, rather than a regional one.
Qualified officers from regions of Gisenyi and to a small extent from Ruhengeri were expelled from the army;
Official matrimonial limitations: Army officers were forbidden to marry Tutsi girls;
Inciting hatred: Hatred against Tutsi in the country was intensified;
Creation of an insecure climate in all towns: Setting mines on all public service transport vehicles in urban areas multiplied.
Looting and arbitrary arrests and imprisonment became frequent;
Planned deliberate divisions in opposition political parties: The
state power created divisions into parties. Orthodox Parties and Power Parties close to the State party;
Creation of a hate radio, Radiotelevision Libre de Mille Collines (RTLM). The mission of this radio was to broadcast hate teachings against the Tutsi, brothers and sisters of RPF;
Assassination of politicians, especially in 1992-1993: There was a wave of political assassinations.
The crime was attributed to the
Tutsi labeled as enemies of true citizens of Rwanda. The rest are foreigners;
Purchase of arms: Considerable increase in the purchasing of arms, traditional and modern.
Execution of the genocide
The killing machine started to work immediately after the plane accident that killed Habyarimana. Among the factors that facilitated the genocide are:
Existence of pre-established lists of victims;
Existence of trained killers;
Existence of arms and ammunitions;
Retreat of the MlNUAR;
Indifference and complicity of the International Community; Carrying of identity cards labeled Hutu or Tutsi;
Rewards for killers;
Psychological preparation of killers/ killing;
Confidence of Tutsis;
Role of the media;
Secrecy surrounding the genocide planning;
Silence of religious Communities - Christians and Moslems.
HOW TO FIGHT GENOCIDE
Rebuilding of a Nation-State, a nation in which all Rwandans feel they are all Rwandans and Rwanda belongs to them. Opting for an identity based on citizenship and not on ethnicity.
Promotion of the culture of democracy and the rule of law. Adoption of the universal democratic principles and seeking Rwandan society democratic values. Respect for the universal right: the right to life.
Avoiding of all forms of differentiation and discrimination.
Differentiation of citizens on the basis of the origin of their ancestors, the time of their settlement in the country, their religions, their languages and dialects constitute a source of conflict which can lead to genocide.
The only acceptable differentiation should be that based on capacity, competence, competition and merit.
This means that the law serves as a preventive tool but also as a correctional one, punishing the wrongdoers. “The fear of God is the beginning of wisdom.”
Having a vision for the future life of citizens. This vision should concern all sectors of national life: cultural development through education, economic development through organisation of production, social development through equitable distribution of the national resources. Poverty can in fact facilitate the propagation of genocide.
Promoting active and coherent regional and continental cooperation. Concerted efforts by all countries constitute an important effort in the fight against genocide. Once there are early signs in a country, all countries in the region should stand up; it is then that those holding the ideology will find themselves trapped and will give up the idea.
Regional and continental cooperation to fight genocide is necessary because of different reasons, notably:
- Trafficking of arms extends to neighbouring countries;
- Victims try as much as possible to flee to neighbouring countries (new immigrants can damage the environment; cutting down trees for construction of shelter, hunting in order to get food);
- Demand for goods and services increases (this can lead to high prices);
- When genociders get defeated and flee, they can easily export the ideology of genocide in the host-country;
- The presence of refugees on a foreign territory can provoke tensions between that country and the country of origin;
- Countries in the region must come together and find a solution. This is costly in terms of time and money;
- Human loss during and after genocide deprives humanity of artists and other experts.
Instead of intervening when the crime is committed, it would be preferable to maximise the opportunities to eradicate the ideology of genocide.
How to stop the genocide
This paragraph examines other actions rather than military intervention. One of these actions is the mobilisation of public opinion, persuading people not to engage in such a degrading situation.
At the same time regional and continental opinion has to be mobilised to denounce the genocide being committed and to solicit rapid intervention to stop it and to bring support to victims. Besides, ways must be sought to support and strengthen the Red Cross effort.
How to manage the consequences of genocide
This paragraph gives some tools drawn from the Rwandan experience from 1994-2007.
Rwanda, after the genocide, is ruled by all political parties which stopped genocide, or contributed in stopping it, or which did not participate in it.
The 13-year period is divided into three phases:
- Emergency phase July 1994-July1996
- Transition phase 1997-2000
- Sustainable development phase 2000-2007.
During the Emergency period, Government concentrated its effort on:
- putting in place some necessary Institutions to run the State, restoring security of people and their property on the whole territory, protecting the country from any external aggression, preventing any possible revenges, assisting needy people, reassuring the international community of the continuity of a State that assumes the assets and liabilities of the previous regimes, etc....
During the transition phase, Government concentrated on consultations between Rwandans themselves and the International community. During this phase, Government shall: create a consultation framework or a forum which brought together representatives of all sectors of the population to identify the origin of genocide, it’s distant and close causes and to suggest appropriate remedy; put in place a traditional jurisdiction called “Gacaca” to try genocide cases; the idea of this jurisdiction is itself a result of consultation among Rwandans; constitute a Commission charged with the responsibility of explaining to the people all there was to know about genocide and each one’s role in the reconstruction effort going on; and put in place mechanisms to reach bilateral and multilateral capital.
During the Development phase, Government shall:
draw up a long term development vision (2020), a reflection of Rwanda’s image in 2020 from the political, economic, social, cultural and environmental fields; to work in such a way that all programmes in the short and medium terms will be achieved with in 2020 vision to reconcile the sons and daughters of Rwanda towards a peaceful habitation and consolidation of National Unity; reflect on the role of regional, continental and global cooperation and the way to make it operational and more useful to the people of those countries; be involved in the search for solutions to conflicts on the African Continent and especially in the Great Lakes region; accelerate the Gacaca process so as to be able to finish all cases on genocide by the end of 2007; reflect on the mechanisms to fight against the ideology and negation of genocide.
Initiatives of this phase are so many; only some of them have been tackled.
QUESTIONS FOR DEBATE
Colonisation and Conflict: We have noticed that the ideology of genocide in Rwanda has its roots in colonisation and evangelisation.
Is this situation peculiar to Rwanda alone or are there some countries which have experienced conflict whose distant causes are due to colonisation? What lessons can we draw from it for the future?
Regional and Continental Cooperation: Among those who conceived, planned and executed genocide in Rwanda, there are some who are almost everywhere on the African Continent and elsewhere in the world.
They maintain militia with the aim of continuing their genocidal tendencies in Rwanda and in the host countries. In what way can CISSA contribute in avoiding a repetition of genocide so that “Never Again” has a meaning and is effective?
Lesson to be learnt from the Rwandan experience: We have had good exchange on the distant and close origins of the genocide ideology, on the planning and execution of the same and its consequences. What lesson can we draw from this experience?
To be continued tomorrow