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Date: Thu, 29 Dec 1994 18:37:11 -0600
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Sender: Zaire and surrounding francophone countries Discussion List:
Subject: Rwanda crisis

International Tribunal on Hutus is Hypocrisy

By Henry F. Mirima, Editor-in-Chief

The Exposure, No. 59, August, 1994, printed in East Africa

Typed in by Gratien Rudakubana (

The most vociferous advocates of the establishment of an international tribune to try Hutus accused of masterminding the genocide in Rwanda in April are Major Paul Kagame, senior RPF army officers, President Museveni, and big powers.

It is very rational that such a tribunal be established so that the world learns the monsters behind this genocide.

However, the world would like also the world to be impartial. The Rwanda massacres are not the first ones in Africa. There were massacres of Ugandans during the Idi Amin, Milton Obote, Tito Okello and NRM regimes. Between the above rulers, more than a million Ugandans were massacred. Why did the big powers now clamouring for the establishment of the tribunal, keep quiet?

Is Ugandan blood less valued than Rwandese blood? When NRM so often boasts of having killed Ugandans in the north, or in Teso, the international community, or international press, hardly gives it coverage.

According to NRM records, massacres in Luwero during Obote time claimed more than 100,000. Also according to FRONASA (the father of NRA) Idi Amin killed more than 500,000 Ugandans. Why has not the UN established an international tribunal to try the people behind these massacres? Why has the OAU kept silent about the massacres?

When the RPF invaded Rwanda Oct. 1, 1990 it occupied a part of northen Rwanda and has never left. However there are reports of massacres taking place immediately after RPF took over. The then Rwanda government made documentary evidence and presented them to the UN, but the world body ignored these reports. Why did the UN and the OAU ignore these reports of massacres by RPF?

And when several Kampala based embassies in 1993 made reports to the UN about RPF ability to infiltrate troops and equipment to their zones, why did the UN again ignore these reports?

An international tribunal to try killers of Rwandese should be established. But in order for it to be respected, it would bring to book not only Hutus, but also RPF killers, more particularly those who engineered the massacres of Archibishop of Kigali and three other bishops.

Also, that tribunal must first establish the background record of RPF commanders to determine those who comitted atrocities in Teso, and Luwero, during the five years war against Milton Obote and after the the NRM came to power. Many RPF commanders committed massacres in northern and eastern Uganda.

If the international community is to be given a credit, it must bring to book those leaders in Africa who are killing their subjects. People like Kamzu banda, and other whom we cannot name here, must also be brought before the tribunal. These people are still alive today and could readily appear before the tribunal.

Also, and this is a major aspect, whoever participated in the massacres was responding to RPF provocation or threat of invasion. The RPF could not, on its own, have acquired the sort of sophisticated long range artillery, and the abundant supply of ammunition for long if some big powers had not tacitly agreed to their being supplied.

Everybody in East Africa knew very well that the RPF was being supplied very lavishly with funds, food, ammunition and long range artillery. The Hutu government in Kigali knew very well that some big powers were behind the RPF. It took steps to inform the UN Security Council. But it was ignored.

Thus, whoever was supplying the RPF with weapons is responsible for making the Kigali government organise the Hutu Militia, and Interahamwe, to get military training in preparation for the day the RPF would strike.

It would be a stupid government which would learn of the increasing might and increasing supply of weapons to his enemies, and he sits idly by waiting the enemy to strike before he gets prepared.

Thus, the big powers, and the persons who supplied the RPF with weapons, an act which provoked the Hutus, these persons and big powers must also appear before the tribunal to give their side of responsability of the massacres.

On the other hand reality must be faced. Establishment of such a tribunal will not, in the long term, work in the national interests of the Rwandese. A public try of Hutus will merely harden the resolve of Hutu extremists, and most Hutus are extremists, to resolve to regroup and one day in fufure to avenge their humiliation.

And when the Hutus manage to regroup, however long it may take, and they succeed in toppling the Tutsi like they did in 1959, the April massacres will be child's play. Some Hutus who fled into exile have been known to say so.

Therefore, if the international community wants to bring lasting peace to Rwanda, the only solution is to remove Tutsis from the government they are occupying through manipulation of super powers, and hold fair and free general elections whereby the majority will go to power.

It is well known that if a majority is in power it can tolerate the minority. But when a minority is in power, through the gun, it becomes brutal and oppressive.

Thus, until the majority Hutus recover their political power, it will be like in apartheid South Africa. Black Africans were kept out of power, but eberybody knows that eventually the whites had to succomb to majority black rule.

Even in Rwanda, there will never be peace until the majority Rwandese have regained power.