Home > Politics - Domestic and International > Shadows of Rwanda Creeping Back

Shadows of Rwanda Creeping Back

Are we getting the narrative wrong again?

In 1994 Rwanda suffered atrocities that one would think could not happen in the modern day, at that time. Hundreds of thousands of human lives were lost during the Civil War that drowned Rwanda in blood. The outcry should have been heard by international powers but they fell on deaf ears. I remember, recently, hearing Bill Clinton (then President of the United States) say that not getting involved in Rwanda was a huge mistake on his part and one he regretted from the days of his presidency. Well, now we have Darfur.

Regan McTarnsey of The Associated Press via Yahoo News reports that actors, writers and lawmakers are stepping up and marking the 5th Anniversary of the Conflict in Darfur with a renewed calling out to the international community to end this atrocity. Actor Matt Damon was quoted as saying,

“After the genocide in Rwanda we all shook our heads and said ‘never again.’ Today, as killings mount in Darfur we need to make ‘never again’ a reality and demand protection for the most vulnerable.”

Author J.K. Rowling lent her signature not to another Harry Potter book, but to an open letter calling for more support to children affected by this dire situation. An excerpt from the letter reads,

“It is time to change the narrative. It is time to tell a different story. This April many children in Darfur will be reaching their fifth birthdays without ever having known peace. The world needs to wake up.”

For a press release as well as the full text of the letter check this link to the African Press Organization/Organisation de la Presse Africaine.

The sad thing is while the United States of America wages a war that never should have happened, and people get up in arms over China, this is happening right in front of our eyes, and we do nothing. This is a situation where diplomacy is trying to work, but cannot due to lack of real military efforts to calm the situation on the ground. The African Union-United Nations peacekeeping force is authorized to have 26,000 troops and police, but U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said only about 7,500 military personnel and 1,500 police officers were in Darfur on Jan. 31. The United Nations Security Council needs to step up and commit real forces to this effort otherwise nothing will come from the diplomatic efforts…Otherwise we will have another Rwanda, and the leaders of today can say on their speaking tours, “I regret not getting involved in Darfur…It was a huge mistake on my part…Never again!”

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