In the spring of 1994 the tiny African nation of Rwanda exploded onto the international media stage, as internal strife reached genocidal proportions. But the horror that unfolded before our eyes had been building steadily for years before it captured the attention of the world".
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1021, vol. 78 (1951), p. 277; Prevent Genocide International, 2008). In the same manner, according to Melvern (2004), genocide, a term that was coined by a Polish lawyer named Raphael Lemkin, entails an orchestrated course of action and a conspiracy, which would be implemented against the target preys. In regard to these facts, one can only imagine and contemplate how horrible, devastating, and appalling the said circumstance would be actually, it is totally beyond any negative description a person could ever utter. On one hand, who would have thought that such barbaric scheme could still exist in the twentieth century, where diplomacy and peace-talks were already known and even successfully implemented in some countries, but, on the other hand, we cannot easily tell or jump into a hasty conclusion as to the applicability of those peace-keeping measures, especially in varying cases, histories, and preexisting conditions in different nations, which might possibly cause genocide to ensue. Nevertheless, the seemingly unimaginable event took place in an African republic named Rwanda and killed roughly 800,000 people in a span of 100 days, from April to June 1994, which had left a mark, or should we say a scar, in the modern day history, and undeniably posed a significant international attention (BBC News, 2008). According to Hinton (2002), the said catastrophic event would warrant some challenging and mind-stirring questions to scholars: "why does one group of human beings set out to eradicate another group from the face of earth" and "what are the origins and processes involved in such mass murder" (Hinton, 2002). In this regard, this paper aims to dissect and explicate the causes that led to the occurrence and execution of the so-called Rwandan genocide. Furthermore, this paper shall examine relevant, reputable and scholarly references/literature in order to provide an appreciable discussion and analysis regarding the aforementioned area of inquiry. As such, considerable knowledge pertaining to applicable concepts, theories, different viewpoints and empirical evidences shall be obtained and be closely dealt with in due course of this paper.
Discussion and Analysis
In order to carefully examine the causes of Rwandan genocide, it would be better for us to tackle a brief background of Rwanda, its people, and some relevant information pertaining to it.
Rwanda, "a land of breathtaking beautiful vistas dotted with countless hills", is a small African country with an area of only 26, 338 km2, and lies above the 1000-metre mark, with over half in the 1, 500-2, 000 m. zone (Prunier, 1995). Moreover, Rwanda's favourable climate and generous land fairly contributed to its agricultural affluence which benefited its industrious peasants, who, according to Prunier (1995), are actually large-scale gardeners. Indeed, the richness and opulence of Rwanda's agricultural land are nature's inheritance to the Rwandan people. Additionally, during its pre-colonial period, Rwanda had one of
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