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The Rwandan Genocide - Essay Example

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The Rwanda genocide occurred in 1994, when at least 800,000 Tutsi and Hutus were killed. The government militia organized a cleansing campaign of the Tutsi through the radio broadcasts and newspapers. Many Hutus were also killed who opposed the killing campaign…
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The Rwandan Genocide

Download file to see previous pages... Grave judgement errors on the part of the Bill Clinton and Mary Albright administration have resulted in catastrophic scarring on the Rwandan people. For example, the US could have used their technology to jam the radio signals that were broadcasting the hate messages. The US could not have asked the UN for total withdrawal of the UN peacekeepers in Rwanda, demanding the UN and its members to adopt the policy "learn to say no" to risky or costly ventures. The UN itself could have deployed national troops or UNAMIR or a combination of both forces to confront the Hutu militia, that could have saved lives.
One of the most alarming fact comes from Lt-General Dallaire who had to spend nearly 70% of his time battling UN logistics while he was in charge of the UN peacekeeping office in Rwanda. Dallaire wanted 5000 troops to be deployed, but had to compromise with 25000 UNAMIR soldiers that weren't even equipped to perform basic tasks. If only the UN and its member states had looked at the evidence rather than their costs. It is incomprehensible that the UN cited short supply of cash when requests for medical supplies came. Dallaire found it very hard to procure replacement spare parts, batteries, medical supplies and even ammunition locally.
Justice is the right of every human being. ...
The important feature of these local courts is that perpetrators who confess will have their sentences halved along with maintaining the traditional aspect of apology and reparations to victims through compensation fund or community service. In my opinion, confessions should be mandatory since it will bring some sort of closure to the survivors and their families and allow the accuser to comprehend what he has done. Evidence of this was reported by the Washington Post that wrote that "the accused have committed suicide following the resurfacing of their suspected actions".
The punishment should fit the crime. But many genocide survivors feel that the punishment of community services handed out by Rwanda courts is insignificant to the violence inflicted on them. The international tribunal does not impose the death penalty however, and the Rwandan government in January 19, 2007, approved a law to abolish the capital punishment. The maximum sentence the tribunal can impose is life in imprisonment while the Gacaca can try suspects accused of murder or assault (but not rape) and can hand out life sentences as maximum punishments. Coincidentally, although legislators included crimes of sexual torture among those to be most severely sanctioned, judicial personnel have shown little interest in prosecuting such crimes. As of the end of March 1998, the United Nations Human Rights Field Operation in Rwanda had registered only eleven cases of persons charged with sexual crimes although such crimes were widely reported to have occurred during the genocide.1
The Gacaca requires additional review since it is supported by even the prisiones themselves as fair and appropriate. As Alana Erin Tiemessen, writing in African Studies Quarterly at the University of Florida, ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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