Talk:Rwandan genocide/Archive 2

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Failed GA Nomination, 28 February 2007

GA review (see here for criteria)
  1. It is reasonably well written.
    a (prose): b (MoS):
  2. It is factually accurate and verifiable.
    a (references): b (citations to reliable sources): c (OR):
  3. It is broad in its coverage.
    a (major aspects): b (focused):
  4. It follows the neutral point of view policy.
    a (fair representation): b (all significant views):
  5. It is stable.
  6. It contains images, where possible, to illustrate the topic.
    a (tagged and captioned): b lack of images (does not in itself exclude GA): c (non-free images have fair use rationales):
  7. Overall:
    a Pass/Fail: [[File:|16px|alt=|link=]]

I am mostly failing this GA nomination because of its extensive lack of citations for entire sections at a time. I also found the prose, particularly in the first section, quite confusing. It needs major cleanup, copyediting and verification, particularly within the 'Background' section. Veesicle (Talk) (Contribs) 15:37, 28 February 2007 (UTC)

  • It also seems to have aspects of POV littered throughout the text. Fails almost all aspects of GA criteria. Veesicle (Talk) (Contribs) 15:42, 28 February 2007 (UTC)
Absolutely agreed. I informed nominator yestreday that the article doesn't have slightest chance of passing. Thank you for your time anyway. The article contains POV, incorrect and misleading information and of course lacks citations. I'm improving it when I have some spare time, it will take me months.--Pethr 20:15, 28 February 2007 (UTC)


The following text appeared in the References section; apparently the following user had added the editorial interpolation there; but the signature appeared in the text of the article: I removed it here --Smmurphy(Talk) 15:40, 11 April 2007 (UTC)". --NYScholar 10:51, 18 April 2007 (UTC)

I find strange to find here a reference from an article by Ian Paisley in the Religion section. His position w/r to the Catholic Church cannot be neutral. Since there is no other place to bring the matter to discussion, let me mention here that I also question the necessity of having a specific section on religion, since it is an isolated determining factor for the genocide, but a part of a complex set of factors and identities. Moreover, if it is the Roman Catholic Church as an institution that is aimed at here (rather than local Church officials), it could be cited alongside the lack of involvement and/or complacency of France, the US and the UN. --Sorry if I don't log on, I am not a wiki expert! MHLemay —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 01:31, 6 November 2008 (UTC)


In Wikipedia, I am accustomed to having a picture of the topic of the article next to the intro. Maybe we should copy and paste a physical map of Rwanda?? I think it would enhance the article if there were a few more pics. Be creative with this one! --Gabycs 02:37, 29 April 2007 (UTC)

I've gone through and added images from commons:Category:Rwandan Genocide. Many of these were on the article previously but were replaced by someone who was uploading copyvio images. When those images were removed, the article ended up being quite bare. - BanyanTree 21:03, 2 May 2007 (UTC)

Glossary and supplements for the Rwandan Genocide

I have redirected Glossary and supplements for the Rwandan Genocide to this page. It did not appear to contain any information that was not already here and a separate page to explain what we are explaining seems unnecessary. - BanyanTree 09:04, 7 June 2007 (UTC)

== responsibility for the assassination the responsibility shold be held with the French governmet for inciting the war in the first place

The current paragraph on the plane crash states:

On the evening of 6 April 1994, the airplane carrying the Rwandan President Juvénal Habyarimana, and Cyprien Ntaryamira, the Hutu president of Burundi, was shot down as it prepared to land in Kigali. Both presidents died when the plane crashed. Responsibility for the attack is heavily disputed, with both the RPF and Hutu extremists being blamed. In 2005, an RPF defector named Lieutenant Abdul Ruzibiza published a book, Rwanda. L’histoire secrete, in which he claimed to have been part of the network which shot down the plane with Ugandan SA-16 missiles.[10]

I've just finished breaking out and rewriting Assassination of Habyarimana and Ntaryamira and Ruzibiza is being given far too much weight here. Responsibility remains a topic of fierce dispute and pointing out one (disputed) source is disproportionate. I propose removing the last sentence and letting readers go through the article on the assassination for the full saga of claims and counterclaims. I will do so unless someone has a counterargument. - BanyanTree 13:22, 8 June 2007 (UTC)

While I'm on the topic, if anyone could source the final paragraphs that I moved over from this page, it would be much appreciated. Thanks, BanyanTree 20:44, 8 June 2007 (UTC)

did you read ruzibiza's book? weight to his accusations have been given weight by the french tribunals as well. are you discounting both? that is hardly a neutral editorial position. removing the reference is objectionable (I have no tildes on my laptop.)—Preceding unsigned comment added by Mbabane (talkcontribs)

I have not read the book, but I have read the BBC article on Jean-Louis Bruguière's most report. There are, to put it mildly, some problems. First, if you have not already done so, please read Assassination of Habyarimana and Ntaryamira, which I feel gives a good overview of the theories. If you don't agree on the details given there, we will obviously never agree on the summary of those details here. Second, the most official/credible RPF-responsibility allegations are the two by Bruguiere, of which Ruzibiza is a part.
As I said in my first post, I prefer that this page simply state that there was an assassination and that responsibility has not been definitely determined. Readers can then go on to Assassination of Habyarimana and Ntaryamira. If you can't live without mention of the Ruzibiza in that paragraph, I will add Linda Melvern's critique of the French report to balance it out. I think this option is less desirable as this structure will cause people to add more theories and allegations here rather than on the assassination page, requiring constant trimming. But I can live with either; which do you prefer?
Also, you don't need tildes on your computer; below the edit summary field in the editing window, there is a "Sign your username" toggle that will enter the tildes. BanyanTree 00:17, 10 June 2007 (UTC)
As there has been no response here, I have gone ahead and removed the sentence on Ruzibiza. - BanyanTree 05:42, 13 June 2007 (UTC)

Belgium Should Apologize

Belgium should apologize for all of its acts that help the initiation of the Rwandan Genocide. Also, there should be a memorial for all those that died. Thelorien 18:43, 22 June 2007 (UTC)

  • What did Belgium have to do with it? Are you referring to the phrase in the "Rwanda: How the genocide happened" BBC reference:
"The two ethnic groups are actually very similar - they speak the same language, inhabit the same areas and follow the same traditions. But when the Belgian colonists arrived in 1916, they saw the two groups as distinct entities, and even produced identity cards classifying people according to their ethnicity. The Belgians considered the Tutsis as superior to the Hutus. Not surprisingly, the Tutsis welcomed this idea, and for the next 20 years they enjoyed better jobs and educational opportunities than their neighbours."
That would make all who ever discriminated by giving one group of people the better jobs responsible for genocide. In Belgium itself, in 1916 the speakers of French were given all the better jobs, the Dutch-speaking Flemish had no chance in becoming an officer in the Belgian Army which in that year was still fighting the First World War mainly in its own country. That discrimination and orders being barked solely in French caused an unbalanced number of casualties amongst the Flemish. So far, neither that deadly fact nor the long existing and for several more decades continued job discrimination resulted in the 59% majority population of Belgium retaliating by eliminating their compatriots. The numerous disagreements between both communities have caused 1 (one) deadly victim when several decades ago, a lone French-speaker fired a gun from the window of his house and hit a Flemish demonstrator on the street in the language-disputed Fouron/Voer area. For the past discrimination or its consequences, neither 'Belgium' nor its French-speaking community ever apologized, and the latter is still not exactly extremely sensitively monitoring current assumed discriminations either. I'm not as yet selecting my machete.
Anyway, that source's claim clearly sugggests that Belgians invented distinctions between Tutsis and Hutus in the 20th century, which contradicts the Rwandan Genocide article: "Before the 19th century, it was believed that the Tutsis held military power while the Hutus possessed supernatural power." Hence the rivalry was not at all instigated by the Belgians, they simply applied their colonial policy according to a traditional rivalry and series of cultural distinctions between groups of people, just as any colonizer did in any region of the world as far as it suited its purposes, including in Rwanda: "Because the Germans did not intend to colonize Rwanda themselves, they sought to rule indirectly by appointing an elite class of indigenous inhabitants which could act as functionaries. Drawing on John Hanning Speke's Hamitic Theory of Races, and recognizing that the Tutsi held political power in Rwandan society, they chose the Tutsi to rule." — That was just before from neighbouring Congo, the Belgians, at war with Germany, arrived in Ruanda-Urundi (the later Rwanda and Burundi); and Speke was neither German nor Belgian.
  • What I can read in this article about the Belgians, is not verifiably confirmed by the given sources:
"Most authors describe the violent ethnic rivalry as the result of the cynical and conflicting manipulations of Belgian colonialists which left behind competing extremists of an established Tutsi autocracy and a cabal of ultranationalist Hutus that gained power towards the end of the 20th century.[2][4]"
The source [2] is a book of which the ISBN leads to a few short quotes that do not mention Belgium; and it is certainly not "most authors", with the current references this "most authors" is clear WP:WEASELRY, and most likely WP:POV; in particular with a source [4] that does not even mention Belgium or Belgians. Furthermore, a recent version of the article had, with "Belgian colonists", mentioned "and Pan-Africanists from neighbouring countries", see this edit, and suddenly left the terrible Belgians to be blamed.
"Following World War I, Rwanda became a protectorate of Belgium, whose colonial policy over the territory followed the German example and is considered especially influential in priming the genocide."
There is no source referenced at all, let alone one that puts Belgium in any way influential in priming the genocide. It appears a gratuitious WP:POV. As far as I know, during the crisis that escalated to a genocide, the Belgians had been involved as UN-Force and left the country after the loss of 11 Belgian paratrooper lifes had demonstrated Belgian UN troops no longer to be in a position to further fulfill their task; accusations have been limited to whether one should have foreseen (Marchal) and might have done more, all with hindsight, and have been investigated. Whatever can be said about Belgium's responsibilities or those of its royal house regarding the colonization of the Congo and the Belgian presence in African colonies, their involvement in Lumumba's assassination, and the disorganized state in which the colonies where abandoned aka given independence in the early 1960s, a genocide is not on the list. Further reading sample on delicate matters, about Belgium ("Belgian Minister backs illegal anti-Rwanda demo"), but also for a further passage:
“Genocidal violence did not just break out as a result of fear or hatred of the Tutsi minority,” said Alison Des Forges, senior adviser to the Africa division at Human Rights Watch. “It was launched by military, administrative, and political authorities using the machinery of the state.” The paper relates how officials and propagandists defined Tutsi civilians as the “enemy” to be targeted by “self-defense” efforts. It also summarizes the context of the genocide, which began in early April 1994, including poverty, land scarcity, colonial rule, the introduction of multi-party politics and the war. “Documenting the genocide is also a way of honoring its victims,” said Des Forges. “The more we understand the preparation and implementation of a genocide, the more we will be able to avert similar horrors in the future.”
Please note: I have no intention to pay further attention to this article, as I do not have a better than average knowledge about the subject; I was merely attending to a demand by Thelorien to pay more attention to this topic in the main Belgium article, on its talk page, for which I cannot find compelling or even convincing reasons here.
SomeHuman 24 Jun2007 19:46 (UTC)
If you want a good reference for how Belgian racial ideology contributed to the genocide, Jean-Pierre Chrétien's The Great Lakes of Africa, probably the best history of the region, contains much detail. - SimonP 21:58, 24 June 2007 (UTC)
I also recommend Mahmood Mamdani's When Victims Become Killers: Colonialism, Nativism, and Genocide in Rwanda, for his argument that Belgium racialized an ethnic division. I would also like to say that I've read the above and am still unsure what POV is being challenged. Is it that the article doesn't say that Belgium should apologize, or is it that the info is not referenced, in which case the tag is mis-chosen? - BanyanTree 22:32, 24 June 2007 (UTC)
To SimonP: I'm sorry but I don't have a copy at hand, and this description does not appear to blame Belgium (it only mentions Belgium once). Google cannot find a single page with the phrase "Belgian racial ideology" or "racial ideology in Belgium", and as a Belgian, I never knew we are supposed to ever have had a such ideology. Is it possible that you refer to racial concepts that originated outside Belgium and that used to be followed by a number of both scolars and political ideologists in a large number of countries until another genocide had made such views outdated? In particular, the above-mentioned BBC source states "for the next 20 years", which would be until 1936, when Nazi ideologies had become more apparent to the rest of Western Europe... while Ruanda-Urundi remained a Belgian colony till 1962–63. Did in fact, Belgium apply any questionable ideology more intensively or longer than most colonializing (and other) countries? Does the fact of having had a genocide in Rwanda in the 1990s make Belgian actions much earlier in that century deserving more guilt or responsibility than any other country that used to operate around the same lines? Is it not mainly because Belgium used to have a big chunk of Middle-Africa that many works were written about Belgium and its colonies, when considering African history (combined with having little knowledge about Black African history from before the second half of the 19th century)?
There's no doubt about ethnical or tribal concepts having played an important role in the Rwandan genocide, but was there no ethnical or tribal rivalry long before the Belgians arrived, and did the situation grew seriously out of hand mainly during the Belgian presence? I would think that the division of Ruanda-Urundi along Hutu/Tutsi lines into two different independent states, Rwanda and Urundi, would not have been in Belgium's interest. How much can one hold any nation responsible for neither having had more controlling power nor a crystal ball to see more than three decades into the future? History can show seeds of something to grow into important historical events, or one can find seeds in old records that never showed their existence again. It is much like the chaos theory about a butterfly in China causing a storm at the opposite side of the world: possible but dependable on too many factors and thus utterly unpredictable, though unlike chaos theoreticists, historians have great hindsight. If one wishes to avoid genocides, one should not look for seeds because those are present everywhere and in all cultures, one should rather inspect the mechanisms of deliberately exploiting cultural differences for political or ideological purposes, such just might help to occasionally prevent one. In other words, I would not see the Christians as having an immense responsibility because of ever having blamed the Jews to have preferred Barrabas' life above the Christian idol; one should rather look at the Christians' and Christian Churches' actions or lack of such much closer to the Holocaust to judge Christian responsibilities. — SomeHuman 24 Jun2007 23:23–23:31 (UTC)
To Banyan: The neutrality of the section, not the entire article, is questioned for its apparent attempt to put nearly all the blame at Belgium; such is factually probably highly incorrect and definitely the currently mentioned sources do not allow such presentation. — SomeHuman 24 Jun2007 23:23 (UTC)
PS: You mention When Victims Become Killers: Colonialism, Nativism, and Genocide in Rwanda; the only work in the 'Selected articles' section of the Rwandan Genocide article is by the same author: The Politics of Naming: Genocide, Civil War, Insurgency which does not even mention Belgium or a colonizer of Rwanda, though from which I noticed these two quotes:
"Most writing on the Rwandan genocide in the US was also done by journalists. In We wish to inform you that tomorrow we will be killed with our families, the most widely read book on the genocide, Philip Gourevitch envisaged Rwanda as a replay of the Holocaust, with Hutu cast as perpetrators and Tutsi as victims. Again, the encounter between the two seemed to take place outside any context, as part of an eternal encounter between evil and innocence."
which refers to the book referenced in the first questionable sentence as [2], as (if) a source blaming Belgium; and also:
"With very few exceptions, the Save Darfur campaign has drawn a single lesson from Rwanda: the problem was the US failure to intervene to stop the genocide. Rwanda is the guilt that America must expiate, and to do so it must be ready to intervene, for good and against evil, even globally. That lesson is inscribed at the heart of Samantha Power’s book, A Problem from Hell: America and the Age of Genocide. But it is the wrong lesson. The Rwandan genocide was born of a civil war which intensified when the settlement to contain it broke down. The settlement, reached at the Arusha Conference, broke down because neither the Hutu Power tendency nor the Tutsi-dominated Rwanda Patriotic Front (RPF) had any interest in observing the power-sharing arrangement at the core of the settlement: the former because it was excluded from the settlement and the latter because it was unwilling to share power in any meaningful way.
What the humanitarian intervention lobby fails to see is that the US did intervene in Rwanda, through a proxy. That proxy was the RPF, backed up by entire units from the Uganda Army. The green light was given to the RPF, whose commanding officer, Paul Kagame, had recently returned from training in the US, just as it was lately given to the Ethiopian army in Somalia. Instead of using its resources and influence to bring about a political solution to the civil war, and then strengthen it, the US signalled to one of the parties that it could pursue victory with impunity. This unilateralism was part of what led to the disaster, and that is the real lesson of Rwanda."
which does not appear to leave much room for putting responsibilities with Belgium.
SomeHuman 25 Jun2007 01:25 (UTC)
I have Mamdani's book somewhere in storage and will add a ref once I dig it up, unless someone else beats me to it. I should also point out nobody on this page actually responded, positively or otherwise, to Thelorien initial post, as it had nothing to do with the editing of the article. I am somewhat concerned that you are operating on the assumption that I am somehow arguing Thelorien's point. I am not. However, I've read more than my fair share of books on the genocide and there is zero disagreement that the period of Belgium colonization was pivotal in the creation of the modern Hutu and Tutsi identities. The section you have tagged as NPOV consists of three subsections, one of which is on the colonial period. This subsection consists of two paragraphs, only one of which is about Belgium. This hardly seems like overemphasizing the role of Belgium. In fact, I would say that it underemphasizes it. But, like I said, I'll add a ref at some point. Cheers, BanyanTree 02:44, 25 June 2007 (UTC)
Do you mean by 'the period of Belgian colonization' only 1916 when the Belgians attacked the former German colonizers, or as I assume a period of about 46 years; if the latter, than such long term can hardly be called 'pivotal' because any such prolongued period is bound to know an evolution (for better or for worse) towards the modern identities, regardless who is in charge. Such does not necessarily show a responsibility by Belgium. And it would not be the 'creation' of those identities. The two sentences I assume to be unjustly derogatory for Belgium are in my first comment under "What I can read in this article about the Belgians, is not verifiably confirmed by the given sources", in short:
1) "Most authors describe the violent ethnic rivalry as the result of the cynical and conflicting manipulations of Belgian colonialists" — 'Most authors': (WP:WEASEL words): which ones, and of how many authors that wrote about the subject? is it really 'most'??? 'the violent ethnic rivalry as the result': again: which author(s) mention(s) like this sentence only Belgian colonist actions to have caused the rivalry to become violent? and all these many authors call them 'cynical' as well? and that many authors use the most derogatory term 'manipulate'? — The phrasing appears highly POV and totally unbalanced.
2) "Belgium, whose colonial policy over the territory (...) is considered especially influential in priming the genocide" — More 'especially' than other influences? considered by whom? (as it stands, it is once more the use of WP:WEASEL words); and can there be any doubt about a derogatory POV and incorrect use of the term 'to prime' that always has the meaning with purpose-aimed intention: To prepare; to make ready; to instruct beforehand; to post; to coach? And all that without a single reference.
For these phrasings to be assumed NPOV, each of the above questions requires a proper answer from an undisputed source. Merely adding 'a ref at some point' will not do. — SomeHuman 25 Jun2007 03:59 (UTC)
I've rewording the phrasing relating to your points above to specify the measures taken. As no source that I take seriously seriously disputes the key role of the Belgian administration in racializing the ethnic distinction and subsequently concretizing it into economic and social institutions, as even a cursory glance at the given refs would inform you. The tag has been removed. - BanyanTree 03:47, 13 August 2007 (UTC)

For the record, Belgium did apologize: [1]. It wasn't exactly an admission of any specific guilt, but it was still an apology.--Xaraphim (talk) 04:32, 25 September 2008 (UTC)

Ethnicity and Rwanda

I find it difficult to explain the Genocide without addressing the idea of the distinct nature of ethnicity of the Kinyarwanda. For example, Hutu, Tutsi, Twa, they are not distinct tribes, they are communities within the tribe, known as Kinyarwanda. They are not clans... there are 12? 20? distinct clans among the Kinyarwanda, and each includes some Tutsi and some Hutu and some Twa. The Kinyarwanda are also noteworthy as being perhaps the most enormous tribe in equatorial sub-Saharan Africa. And perhaps most importantly, the pre-colonial fluidity of Hutu-Tutsi identification: Hutu means servant, and Tutsi means cattle owner. If you lost all your cattle, you became a Hutu. If you acquired cattle, you because a Tutsi. The communities did not gel until the Belgians came in with the identification cards and whatnot.

Papalopolis 19:47, 13 July 2007 (UTC)Papalopolis

Rwandan Genocide as 21th Century genocide.

Now I'm just shooting my mouth off, but I find certain inconsistencies popping up when I hear an account of the Rwandan genocide. First of all is the whole competing ethnicities idea; I've already addressed how it is problematic to describe the Hutu and Tutsi as competing ethnicities. Second of all is the idea that the genocide was state sponsored, rational, organized, that it was directed against Tutsis and moderates. Then they say "That's how genocide goes in the 20th century: you hit the *others* then you hit the *moderates*." Remember that an enormous swath of Rwanda was Tutsi free, ie: the South, and yet there was still murder on a massive scale. It was not moderates that were being killed, but anyone who could reasonably be a target: people with more than average amounts of property, people who you and your neighbours didn't like. My source is Diamond's "Collapse," which I no onger own as I have loaned it out. Also it wasn't terribly well organized from the top-down. It was quite unlike the Holocaust or the Armenian genocide. Anarchy+population pressure+fear*racial purity=Rwandan genocide, whereas the Nazis and Young Turks were all about purity and fear, but operated in a totalitarian state that was not under Mathusian collapse. The Rwandan geoncide was not the last genocide of the 20th century but the first genocide of the 21st century. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Papalopolis (talkcontribs)

You are mistaken. The south was the old center of the Tutsi-led Kingdom of Rwanda and Butare Province is well known both for the resistance of its population to the genocide and for the massive bloodbath that ensued once the government directed militias in from other parts of the country. Diamond's book has already been discussed, and Diamond's source concentrated on one commune in the northwest, not the south. You are correct is noting that discussing your own analysis of the events, especially given its tenuous foundation in reality, is off-topic. - BanyanTree 00:30, 14 July 2007 (UTC)
I realize of course that I'm responding to a comment written quite a few months ago; however, I really do have to take issue with the statement by Papalopolis that "[...] anyone [...] could reasonably be a target: people with more than average amounts of property, people who you and your neighbours didn't like." You're essentially claiming that no genocide took place, but simply chaotic, disorganized killing on an enormous scale -- a claim that's utterly false. If you look up any credible source (both academic and eye-witness) you'll find mountains of evidence indicating that the specific targeting of Tutsis, and anyone willing to stand up for them, was painstakingly planned down to the last detail beforehand. One million people cannot be butchered in 100 days, and almost entirely with close-combat type weapons like machetes, without a significant level of forethought. --Todeswalzer|Talk 00:42, 22 February 2008 (UTC)
I'd just like to back up Todeswalzer. Simply by looking up many of the sources cited in this very article you will find writing about the preparation and planning for the 1994 genocide. The pre-1994 government was involved in planning the genocide and even though the president was killed, a government body still existed. There was not anarchy in the sense of lack of government during the genocide. I also don't think it's a good policy to compare genocides. The Rwandan genocide was not like the Jewish Holocaust was not like the Armenian genocide was not like the... Each genocide has it's own circumstances and human faces.--Xaraphim (talk) 04:51, 25 September 2008 (UTC)
see the media propaganda section I have added... it covers some of the raised issues.--SasiSasi (talk) 21:04, 25 September 2008 (UTC)

Rwanda on Security Council 94/95

I was just wondering if there was a direct link between the inaction of the UN and the fact that Rwanda had a seat on the security council in 1994 (as well as 95) ? My apologies if this has already been covered . Boomshanka 02:14, 31 July 2007 (UTC)

It hasn't been covered, as far as I'm aware, but it seems to be pretty much of a non-issue as far as some books I've read are concerned. Dallaire, in Shake Hands with the Devil, seems to spend more time than most on it, about a paragraph, in which he implies that the Rwandan ambassador, "not only privy to the inner workings of the mission [UNAMIR] but to the Security Council's attitude toward the mission and its many woes" (p. 195), was feeding information to Hutu extremists. This may have led to the instigation of the genocide, though Dallaire doesn't prove his points, but sources are unanimous that the U.S., and to a lesser extent the U.K., who actually had a very clear idea of what was going on, blocked any action out of fear that they would be forced to get involved and foot the bill. (Note that this was just after the Somalia debacle.) The French, who were still trying to protect their client Hutu regime, were also not entirely helpful, though they became eager to intervene after it became clear the the RPF would take over unless the government was propped up by an external force. - BanyanTree 13:39, 31 July 2007 (UTC)

The U.S. Govenment's Lack of involvement in...

Firstly, apologies if anything appears off; it's my first wiki edit. I've fixed some obvious hyperbole - "saving billions of lives in Bosnia" - regardless of how many deaths one might extrapolate from Balkan conflicts, a sixth of the world are not Bosnian. I've also sorted tautology, and spelling errors at the start of this section.

I do believe that the section deserves to remain; especially the second part (citing Stanton, onwards), though I have some misgivings about the remarks

"The interests of the U.S for the most part, simply did not involve this region. They justified this inaction by neglecting that the atrocities occurring in Rwanda were acts of genocide. It was a method of denying the truth to remain inactive and apathetic towards an elevating calamity".

This is a largely tautological assertion (the first two sentences do little but repeat previously stated citations) with a questionable conclusion: whilst one cannot question that there was U.S. inaction, any attempt at rationalising their decision is conjecture. I therefore propose either that the quoted text be deleted altogether; else replaced with: "The U.S. thus denied the truth that events in Rwanda - where they had little to gain from sending forces - constituted genocide, and remained inactive and apathetic towards an elevating calamity"

It seems niggly, but the 'and' is crucial. Otherwise one is inventing a rationale for the U.S. Government's inaction, which constitutes a point of view (unless someone can cite an insider on this), and rather weakens the article.

In my edit I have replaced the text, which seemed to be both in keeping with the initial article, and a resolution to the N.P.O.V. issue. I hope I haven't overstepped the mark in doing so, but the text's there for re-insertion, if others will it.

I've also left a request for citation for the assertion that "The U.S. did not only fail to approach other solutions but they also seemed to act against these approaches" - how they seemed to act must be backed up by evidenced, cited examples, else the sentence ought to be deleted or changed to "Despite avoiding intervention, the U.S. failed to approach other solutions."

I'm not experienced enough in Wikipedia circles to say if considerations of Governmental U.S. attitudes to armed intervention by regional interest are relevant to an article on Rwandan genocide. It seems to me that, given current and contemporary politics, they are, and hopefully some others can help make this section a bit stronger with citation.

Oh, wait a sec, that was just a minor edit... Ah well, I've got to start somewhere. Ta. Shoogledoogle (talk) 06:09, 20 December 2007 (UTC)

I personally think that this section is just extremly biased. Granted that you can't deny that the U.S. was inactive but it is not only attempting to give their rationale but using numerous amounts of conjecture. Perhaps a seasoned editor could help out in this paticular section? (talk) 08:38, 5 January 2008 (UTC)
The USA were not only inactive, but:
  1. Contrary to later public statements, the US lobbied the UN for a total withdrawal of UN forces in Rwanda in April 1994;
  2. Secretary of State Warren Christopher did not authorize officials to use the term “genocide” until May 21, and even then, US officials waited another three weeks before using the term in public;
  3. Bureaucratic infighting slowed the US response to the genocide;
  4. The US refused to “jam” extremist radio broadcasts inciting the killing because of costs and concern with international law;
  5. US officials knew exactly who was leading the genocide, and actually spoke with those leaders to urge an end to the violence. (talk) 18:45, 27 April 2008 (UTC)
I have included the elements above in a new section titled "American role". I used the word "role" specifically, as the arguments pertain to a mix of actions of commission and omission, and mentioned that there is no substantiated evidence of direct U.S. military involvement.Truth or consequences-2 (talk) 23:53, 1 April 2009 (UTC)

Here we go again. England and Europe screwed up Africa. Remember The Scramble? How about the atrocities in The Congo (Belgium), Kenya (England), Algeria (France). It goes on and on. Germany and Italy did their part too. Don't blame the Americans. You broke it, you fix it. BTW I know I said England. That's what I meant. Not UK nor especially the British which is a bogus nationality. Yeah yeah I know, American (Word). —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:50, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

I restored the section as it did not say what claims. The facts are generally supported as in the above talk, notwithstanding DBaba's edit summary.Truth or consequences-2 (talk) 18:30, 22 August 2009 (UTC)

Gourevitch sourcing

The current footnote to We Wish To Inform You... is to the entire book, which makes it practically useless to check facts. If someone who actually has page numbers is around, I encourage you to start changing the refs to include them. If not, at some point I will either re-source or remove passages sourced in this manner. - BanyanTree 07:42, 21 August 2007 (UTC)

After what appears to be an ample amount of time, I have gone through and removed this footnote, and associated text, rather than trying to find alternative sources that support the exact same wording. - BanyanTree 09:25, 13 September 2007 (UTC)
I removed: "The only foreign entity to directly intervene was the French government, which sent troops not to stop the genocide, but rather to protect the genocidal Rwandan armed forces from the invading rebel force that ultimately ended the bloodshed.<ref name = "Gourevitch, 1999"/>". It isn't properly sourced (at least not anymore) and even if there was a source it would me more of a POV than generally established concensus. This POV may be included in the article if properly sourced but elaboration based on HRW report and other sources would be much better (and most likely closer to reality as well).--Pethr 18:32, 16 September 2007 (UTC)
Actually, Pethr, this is pretty much what happened, so I really don't see what's so POV about it. (You might be able to argue that statements that go to motive are necessarily POV, but the end effect is in fact the same, rendering discussions of true motives fairly moot.) In reality many of the most prominent genocidaires were able to escape only through the zone turquoise; and the quote itself sounds like something out of Gourevitch. I'll see if I can find a copy of this and add a reference. --Todeswalzer|Talk 01:08, 5 March 2008 (UTC)

Vandalism && POV issues

Cleared some of the most visible crap on this article, and reformed some sentences to reNPOVize the first paragraphs. 13:06, 17 October 2007 (UTC)

Since you didn't revert to get rid of the vandalism (diff), I couldn't figure out what was simply lost wording and links that you didn't realize was there before and what was conscious rewriting. I've thus made a full reversion. Please come back if you have a problem with the wording of the restored version. Thanks, BanyanTree 22:36, 17 October 2007 (UTC)

Wanted poster

Has the poster been changed much since it's been issued? Has the persons on the poster been captured yet?

Don't you think this poster is now outdated???? (talk) 22:44, 28 November 2007 (UTC)

Good point. It may be best on another article to do with international hunts for genocide perpetrators or something. Or maybe in its own section to do with the hunt for the genocidaries. WikieWikieWikie (talk) 22:40, 14 July 2008 (UTC)

Disturbing Images

I don't know if this matters to others, but I personally find all the images of skulls disturbing. It chills me a little bit. Can we change the images to other pictures but without the blood and violence?

Fusion7 (talk) 02:18, 2 January 2008 (UTC)

I actually find your comment quite disturbing. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:03, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
There was a similar remark made a few months ago. The point was raised that any article discussing genocide will necessarily be "disturbing", and will necessarily involve "blood and violence". Now, of course, that doesn't mean that we have to include disturbing images; however, photos of sculls lined up on shelves has (for some reason) become a dominant symbol of the genocide in Rwanda, and so I think we need to keep them in the article. --Todeswalzer|Talk 03:50, 2 January 2008 (UTC)
But it creeps out us spoiled, upper class, insensitive brats :'( (Just kidding... Okay, HALF kidding.) Anyway, I understand why you have this image. It is to show us the true horrors of the situation, not some PG rated kiddie version. It just is a little bit of a.... lunch loser, like all those stupid horror films. However, could you PLEASE find something else? 8 year olds go on this website. Fusion7 (talk) 19:36, 20 February 2008 (UTC)
Perhaps you'd be satisfied if we just deleted the whole article? --Todeswalzer|Talk 00:53, 22 February 2008 (UTC)
No. Lets put it this way: If you were going to give a presentation about the genocide to 5th graders, what images would you use? —Preceding unsigned comment added by Fusion7 (talkcontribs) 00:46, 2 June 2008 (UTC)
Colourful drawings of skulls instead? No, because Wikipedia is not censored for minors. --Ezeu (talk) 16:55, 2 June 2008 (UTC)
I also don't understand why Fusion7 has the idea that Wikipedia's target audience is "5th graders". --Todeswalzer|Talk 00:03, 3 June 2008 (UTC)

Troll warning

Watch for trolling on this article. The GNAA, a trolling group added, "The GNAA was unavailable for comment." under the first paragraph under the "Genocide" heading. It read, "Hundreds of roadblocks were set up by the militia around the country. Lieutenant-General Dallaire and UNAMIR, escorting Tutsis in Kigali, were unable to do anything as Hutus kept escalating the violence and even started targeting, via RTLM, UNAMIR personnel and Lieutenant-General Dallaire himself. The GNAA was unavailable for comment."

I erased it for now, but they may be back in the future to make further damage to the article. The GNAA is the troll group "Gay Nigger Association of America" originating from slashdot. Even if the GNAA was a real group having something to do with Rwanda, then the sentence still needs to be stricken out because it has absolutely nothing to do with the rest of the content of the paragraph.

Further, assuming the GNAA is/was a real group in Rwanda, "GNAA" should not be used before explaining what "GNAA" stands for.

Editing Problem

In the Civil War section something got chopped out mid-word and two remaining sentences got stuck together thus: "...installment of Hutu Power ideology in schools and the establishment of an exclf the transitional government, was open to all parties, including the RPF." I can't infer what was meant, and don't know how to find what was originally stated to repair it, so I leave it to those more skilled at editing. Thanks. (talk) 23:44, 3 December 2009 (UTC)Mark

There is a problem with the first sentence of the first paragraph under 'Background'. The example is: "{{main|History of |expansionist]] state." I will not make any changes, as I have no idea what is meant. It is probably a mistake, but someone in the know should correct it, especially as the Rwanden Genocide is making recent headlines. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:39, 13 March 2008 (UTC)

Hi! Thanks for bringing this to everyone's attention. I've gone through the article's history and it appears a previous editor inadvertently removed some material while making other edits. I've accordingly restored the opening two paragraphs of the "Background" section (from a March 8 edit) to fix the problem you've pointed out. --Todeswalzer|Talk 22:50, 13 March 2008 (UTC)

The genocide in Rwanda was a horible genocide, because it is mostly about how the Hutu's were targeting the Tutsi's because the Tutsi's had killed the Hutu president. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:42, 3 June 2008 (UTC)

Which of these works best?

The Rwandan Genocide was the 1994 mass killing of hundreds of thousands of Rwanda's minority Tutsis and the moderates of its Hutu majority. Over the course of approximately 100 days, from April 6 through to mid July, at least 500,000 people were killed.[1] Most estimates are of a death toll nearer the 800,000 and 1,000,000 marks.[2]


The Rwandan Genocide was the mass killing of hundreds of thousands of Rwanda's minority Tutsis and the moderates of its Hutu majority, in 1994. Over the course of approximately 100 days, from April 6 through to mid July, at least 500,000 people were killed.[1] Most estimates are of a death toll nearer the 800,000 and 1,000,000 marks.[3]


The Rwandan Genocide was the mass killing of hundreds of thousands of Rwanda's minority Tutsis and the moderates of its Hutu majority. Over the course of approximately 100 days, from April 6 through to mid July, in 1994, at least 500,000 people were killed.[1] Most estimates are of a death toll nearer the 800,000 and 1,000,000 marks.[4]


The Rwandan Genocide, in 1994, was the mass killing of hundreds of thousands of Rwanda's minority Tutsis and the moderates of its Hutu majority. Over the course of approximately 100 days, from April 6 through to mid July, at least 500,000 people were killed.[1] Most estimates are of a death toll nearer the 800,000 and 1,000,000 marks.[5]

Im thinkin the third one!?!WikieWikieWikie (talk) 18:55, 14 July 2008 (UTC)

As an observer in the latest kerfuffle, I should note that the "best" lead section would be one that conforms to Wikipedia:Lead section, in that it reflects the emphases of the article body, and thus doesn't introduce information not already present in the article body. I view the fighting over lede wording found nowhere else in the article to be symptomatic of the neglect of the actual body of the article. - BanyanTree 22:22, 13 July 2008 (UTC)
This doesnt really help the situation here. It is true the main article body requires alot of work. It is still important to get the introduction right though, especially as alot of people only read these sections (I suspect). It may be trivial, its just the current lead (first option) just doesnt chime quite right. It seems to me to overstate the significance of the year of the event in question, as well as the significance of this to the year, even. It is not a petty squabble, nor do I want to bicker and fret over this. I just want a good article. And the first words matter alot. WikieWikieWikie (talk) 09:55, 14 July 2008 (UTC)

Is this better?

The Rwandan Genocide was the mass murder of hundreds of thousands of Rwanda's minority Tutsis and the moderates of its Hutu majority, over the course of approximately 100 days, from April 6 through to mid July, in 1994. At least 500,000 people were the victims of the violence.[1] Most estimates are of a death toll nearer the 800,000 and 1,000,000 marks.[6]

WikieWikieWikie (talk) 10:06, 15 July 2008 (UTC)

Of all the possible options listed here, I see the first one as the most viable introductory paragraph. I feel that this paragraph conforms the best to WP:LEAD's style guideline that it should be able to stand alone as a concise overview of the article. It's the one that's the simplest, most informative and least confusing. SWik78 (talkcontribs) 13:05, 17 July 2008 (UTC)

I think the statement of a date in the manner shown in the first option is untenable. If it was over two different years this usage would be redundant. Furtherly, it overstates the significance of the year to the event, and the relevance of the event to this year, even. It chides, I feel, with sensationaliseation. WikieWikieWikie (talk) 14:15, 19 July 2008 (UTC)
I disagree. It's the simplest example of encyclopedic prose that's most informative and direct to the point. SWik78 (talkcontribs) 16:56, 22 July 2008 (UTC)
One hears alot of people say 'encylopedic prose'. Is this 'most informative and direct to the point', though? I find it abruptly to the point, and muddly. I think encyclopedic means concise. This does not, though, necessitate a style of, well, if not sensationaliseation, I cannot say. Sensationaliseation beacause if you just cram facts together without proper attention to the details, you inevitably arrive at a headline. Headlines seansationalise. An encylopedia is not a newspaper article, it is an article of olds if anything. If we write things too punchily articles may become trivialiseational too. WikieWikieWikie (talk) 19:36, 25 July 2008 (UTC)
My main issue with your previous edits on this article had to do mostly with the lateral moves you were making, ie constantly changing the wording of the article without actually changing any facts. This is a subject on which there is very little new information emerging anymore and there is no need to keep re-writing the same lead section over and over again. The other issue I had was your insistence on avoiding prose in favour of edits such as this one where you’re more intent on editorializing and trying to create a work of poetry rather than keeping your edits encyclopedic. Mind you, I’ve gathered so far that you and I have different views on what “encyclopedic” means but please consider this: every other encyclopedia in the world (by the way, you can easily verify this yourself by grabbing a copy of an Encyclopædia Britannica) would include the most basic facts about the genocide in the first sentence or two, such as the number of people killed and when it happened. Your version speaks of attempt at the annihilation and eruption of the pressures of the past decades which is fine in the subsequent paragraphs that deal with the reasons and causes but it's not fine when you're trying to write a short, independent summary of the important aspects of the article's topic as WP:LEAD suggests.
Also, I strongly disagree with your notion that information in an encyclopedia encroaches on trivia and sensationalism. There is absolutely no basis for such a statement. In fact, I would dare to say that the above mentioned sentences of attempt at the annihilation and eruption of the pressures of the past decades from this edit is exponentially more sensationalistic than claiming the genocide to be a mass killing and that 800,000 people were killed.
Your last few edits spoke of the people killed as "victims". This is something with which I also strongly disagree. A victim can also be an injured civilian or an orphaned child. The numbers of 800,000 to 1,000,000 don’t take these into account, they speak only of the people that died.
Frankly, I find absolutely nothing wrong with the lead the way it was at the time you made your very first edit on this article. The article was in steady development before either one of us started editing it which would at least imply some sort of a standing consensus. Since it wasn’t broke (sic), it didn’t need to be fixed. SWik78 (talkcontribs) 14:22, 7 August 2008 (UTC)
Well there is alot here to consider. I think if you want to get personal maybe the user pages are the best p[laces for this. Your argument does not tackle the issue I raise here. You attack 'editorialising'? Well if I cannot do this what is it that I am doing on the Wiki? The edit you bring to attention is admittedly a bit too colorful. I did not argue against its alteration though. The current lead is not too bad, I will also admit. The first thing I said when you began your edit was they were vergeant on the trivial. This is the problem of people who think encyclopedic mean slap and dash. The way you think the lead must be left just seems to me to be as so; slap and dash. This seems to be your idea of Wiki ethics too. Just slap it and dash it, and leave it be if you can. This is not my view on the Wiki. I will edit if something seems to be thin and incomplete. Enough said I think. Unless I can plead Wikipedians to cease their slap and dash approach. If Wikipedia pretend to be a world class encyclopedia we must not consider its editorialiseation a constant faux pas, yet simply constant contributions towards a goal of perfection. It must not be left alone until everyone (with respect for its potential role in the world) considers it perfect. WikieWikieWikie 13:10, 10 August 2008 (UTC)
First of all, I am not trying to make anything personal. I am not commenting on you as an editor, I’m commenting on your edits. I find it pertinent to compare your suggestions of changes to the lead paragraph to your previous edits on the article as a way to point out, what I believe to be, your misconceptions of Wikipedia’s manual of style that exhibit themselves in your edits.
The American Heritage Dictionary defines editorialize/editorializing as:
  1. To express an opinion in or as if in an editorial
  2. To present an opinion in the guise of an objective report
WP:NOR states: Wikipedia does not publish original research or original thought. WP:What Wikipedia is not lists, among others, journalism and opinion pieces. You asked a question: Well if I cannot do this [editorializing] what is it that I am doing on the Wiki? Since Wikipedia is not a publisher of original thought or opinion pieces, what you should be doing on the Wikipedia is presenting clear, verifiable facts that are put into context of the subject at hand and written out in clear and concise encyclopedic prose. And, yes, according to those dictionary definitions and Wikipedia’s definitions of itself, editorializing is most definitely a constant faux pas.
Wikipedia will never, ever be perfect however you look at it. If our goal is to make the information on Wikipedia as accurate and as encyclopedic as possible, the Wikipedia corps od editors will have to be replaced by professional academic writers. That would mean 2 things:
  1. Since we’re not professional academic writers, people like you and I would not be able to edit anymore so out the window goes anyone from Wikipedia is a free encyclopedia that anyone can edit
  2. Since professional writers would not be working for free, out the window goes free from Wikipedia is a free encyclopedia that anyone can edit
I don’t for a second doubt that you’re trying to improve Wikipedia but calling my edits slap and dash while at the same time claiming that you’re trying to make Wikipedia perfect is long ways off from trying to achieve consensus based on a generally agreed upon set of principles, especially when the two of us have vastly different views on what Wikipedia should be.
Nevertheless, the lead paragraph of the article remained unchanged and unchallenged for quite a while before you changed it to your own preferred version and then kept re-wording it several times, each time only changing the aesthetics of the lead without adding any new information. I find the lead paragraph fine as it is right now. I’m sure that it could still be improved but I disagree with your suggestions so far as to what constitutes improvement from the current version. Feel free to disagree with me all you want but try to get someone to agree with you before you start chaniging things again. So far, the consensus has been with the existing lead and (please don’t get offended by this because it’s not meant to be personal) you have been informed multiple times by editors on other articles about their disagreements with your style of editing such as your edits on Canute the Great and Coordinated Universal Time‎ as well as this one. Please leave things the way they are if there doesn’t exist a need for improvement and an obvious solution. If you believe my last statement is incorrect and you do have a solution, I’ll retract it if you can find other editors to agre with you.
Peace! SWik78 (talkcontribs) 14:51, 11 August 2008 (UTC)
Your point I can get too colourful is true though. I welcome alterations to this over colourfulness though. Still, I might refer to some of your initial edits against my edits. These were haphazard. This is the thing I always try to correct in articles. Even if there is no additional information, or references. I do try to add appropriate links to article though too. This is a worthy persuit in itself. Let us leave it here and continue to improve the article here. I still must read through my rescently bought books on the topic at hand. I hope I can add alot of info and refs in the future. WikieWikieWikie (talk) 01:33, 2 September 2008 (UTC)

Article to be updated upon the latest developments

France has been accused of contributing the acts of genicide. The accusations should be displayed. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 10:17, 6 August 2008 (UTC)

War rape section

I have added the war rape section which i originally wrote for the war rape article. It might need editing to fit into this article. Its fairly substantial (but then again it was a major part of the genocide).--SasiSasi (talk) 13:17, 13 August 2008 (UTC)

You need to decide what the "main article" is. At war rape, you state the main article is Rwandan Genocide and here you state that the main article is War rape. Whatever is not the main article should have a section written in summary style, while the main article should point to the other using {{see also}}. An alternative is to break out the content to a new article, e.g. Rape in the Rwandan Genocide, and make summary sections both here and at war rape. Having duplicate sections in two different articles is just bad design (what happens when the content in the two places starts to diverge over time?) and I'll cut the section down to the a sentence or two and point to war rape as the main article if nobody does anything. - BanyanTree 22:45, 13 August 2008 (UTC)
I fully agree, the same section should not be in two articles. You often find a section on the same topic in different articles, covering the subject from different angles and appropriate to their host article. The war rape article originally started by pasting together bits on war rape found in other article, which is now being extended and pulled together. The use of war rape in Rwanda had a profound effect on neighbouring countries and war rape is now common in the DRC and Dafur. The Rwanda Genocide article probably does not want to go there and this topic can be covered in the War rape article... its an example of how topics are covered in different ways in different articles. The reason I pasted the section into the Rwanda Genocide article is because it provides a good basis for those closer involved in the Rwanda Genocide article to do something with it.
Given that war rape was such a big element of the Rwanda Genocide I dont think it should be cut down to only one or two sentences, a paragraph/section is more appropriate. The ruling on element of genocide is pretty important (it was the first time that war rape was recognised as element of genocide), so that should probably be in the article, but maybe its better to put this into its own paragraph/section briefly summarising the rulings of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda and link to the main article.
In the context of the Rwanda Genocide article people may wish to add or take away certain things, e.g. you could move the propaganda bit to its own section, which could be used to explains more on the propaganda and role of certain media outlets leading up to the genocide more generally - see and ). Also, you can probably removed (or move) some of the context (e.g. it might not be necessary to explain what moderate Hutu were in the war rape section, as this is covered at other points in the article). Also, you might want to extend the reference on sexual violence in the context of mutilation and torture of both men and women (not strictly speaking war rape), which probably deserves a paragraph/section in its own right. The bit on pregnancies resulting out of rapes and the social isolation faced by some war rape victims may be moved to the "aftermath" section and extended to include more material on the children that are now coming of age (integration in society etc).
The war rape section is generously referenced (every main point has its own reference), this should make it easy to move bits or cut them out, or add material from other sources.
Hope this helps.--SasiSasi (talk) 09:28, 14 August 2008 (UTC)
Thanks for the response but you still seem to be envisioning two different sections of comparable length. If you think that content needs to be tailored for both articles, I suggest you break out a separate article with all the relevant information and then write summary style sections for both articles pointing to that separate article. Given the situation, that would appear to be the most efficient solution. - BanyanTree 12:45, 14 August 2008 (UTC)
no i dont think they should be the same length... what I am saying is that the rape section in the rwanda article should be cut down to paragraph length (linking to main), and that some bits of what is now in the war rape section can be moved to other sections within the rwanda article (i.e. this article)... as I suggested the propaganda bit could move into a propaganda section (which does not yet exist but would be appropriate), the genocide ruling bit could move into a tribunal section (which does not yet exist, but would be appropriate and should link to the main article), and the bit on pregnancies and the social effect on the victims of war rape could move into the aftermath section (with some additional research).
I don’t have time to do this now, but I am quite happy to make a start in the next couple of days. This would obviously lead to an extension of the article (which would be in line with what has been said at the failed GA review), so in plain English: I am proposing the cut down of the actual war rape section to paragraph length (focusing on numbers, nature and prevalence), the extension of the aftermath section to include the aftermath of the rapes, the addition of a propaganda section (which would cover media involvement before and during the genocide more generally), and the addition of a summarising tribunal section linking to the main article.--SasiSasi (talk) 13:01, 14 August 2008 (UTC)
Sounds good to me. I'm in no rush so am happy to wait for your edits. - BanyanTree 13:21, 14 August 2008 (UTC)

Media and propaganda section

created a media and propaganda section which can be extended or reworked to fit better into the article.--SasiSasi (talk) 15:44, 16 August 2008 (UTC)

Aftermath section

Restrsuctured aftermath section (merged with Political Background section, which use to be at the end of the article), the individual subsections of the aftermath section still need work (and sources!).--SasiSasi (talk) 17:09, 16 August 2008 (UTC)

Religion Section

Felt obligated to remove the religion section as it implicated the Roman Catholic Church as a participator in the genocide without adequate proof. Of the two references provided to support this claim, one link did not work (in fact no article of the name listed exists on the Human Rights Watch web page) and the other article did not support this section's argument. The accuracy of the other article, the Protestant Webpage one, is dubious at best, especially when considering their main evidence is not factually correct. The article uses Augustin Misago as an example of RC participation in the genocide and claims that he actively killed Tutsis, though he only refused to shelter them in his Church. Left the references if anyone wants to look into this further, but I see no real point to this section. Don't have an account, but I think I've made my points pretty clear here. 16:23, 17 November August 2008 (UTC)

I agree. This section makes no sense. Both Hutus and Tutsis were mostly Catholic. None of the murderers were motivated by religion. They were motivated by hate of the Tutsi or fear that they could be killed if they don't kill. Ian Paisely, who leads the Protestant Studies website, is hardly objective as he is an anti-Catholic hatemonger. Azn Clayjar (talk) 15:01, 21 November 2008 (UTC)

This implication is completly baseless. I don't question that individual priests, nuns or other representatives of the Catholic Church may have acted out of line, but to implicate the Catholic Church as a whole is false. The reference linked to is from a biased source that does not seek truth, but spins to bolster their own positions. If the Catholic Church supported the racism or genocide, it would have to come from the pope or the bishops. Here is what the pope said to the bishops of Africa at the Mass of the Inauguration of the African Synod on April 10, 1994: "With you, reunited in this African Synod, and in communion of spirit with the Bishops of Rwanda who could not be with us today, I feel the need to launch an appeal to stop that homicide of violence. Together with you, I raise my voice to tell all of you: stop these acts of violence! Stop these tragedies! Stop these fratricidal massacres!" Source: —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:40, 24 November 2008 (UTC)

lead rewrite

I have rewritten the lead to fix a number of glaring areas, to streamline what had become a very choppy timeline and to trim off the section's worth that reported that no foreign power had done anything to prevent it. Specifically, moderate Hutus were also targeted in the genocide and the RPF were not complicit in the genocide (making no excuse for the political killings that it did carry out both during its renewed offensive or after taking control). Since the events of the genocide were pretty much unaffected by external forces, I have moved the section stating this fact in a long-winded fashion to a less prominent location down into the article body. - BanyanTree 00:49, 18 February 2009 (UTC)


The timeline section is oddly truncated, ending at April, 9-10, 1994. Yet according to the body of the article, "The victory of the RPF rebels and overthrow of the Hutu regime ended the genocide in July 1994, 100 days after it started." The timeline from April through July is therefore missing.Truth or consequences-2 (talk) 12:07, 2 April 2009 (UTC)

Percentage of population killed

I found estimates of the total Rwanda population ranging from 5 to 7 million. This would mean that up to 20% were willed. Perhaps someone will find a better estimate and add it to the intro improving on my 20% estimate. Thanks172.130.23.79 (talk) 01:47, 7 April 2009 (UTC)


Why is there a discrepency of 500000 killed between sources 1 and 2 in the main article? This is unacceptable. How can this be possible ? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:12, 1 August 2009 (UTC)

Ambiguity about the population of Rwanda at the time of the genocide, ambiguity about how many refugees resulted, ambiguity about how many died in Zaire as opposed to in the genocide, a tendency to inflate the numbers for political and sensationalist reasons. In my opinion, if Alison Des Forges, Rwanda academic turned human rights activist, says that she is confident about a number of at least 500,000 and the RPF government, who have a vested interest in making the genocidaires look as evil as possible, says a million, I would go with Des Forges' estimate. - BanyanTree 04:57, 23 August 2009 (UTC)


"In 1990 the Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF), a rebel group composed mostly of Tutsi refugees, invaded."

Huh? Invaded what? From where? Please clarify. Thanks. (talk) 10:16, 7 June 2009 (UTC)

Clarified. Thanks, BanyanTree 04:50, 23 August 2009 (UTC)

"American role"

Hi, regarding an apparent wide rift in our views on this section, I think it would be a good idea to open a dialogue. I am responding to the comment,

I restored the section as it did not say what claims. The facts are generally supported as in the above talk, notwithstanding DBaba's edit summary.Truth or consequences-2 (talk) 18:30, 22 August 2009 (UTC)

I find numerous aspects of this section and its assertions to be unsustainable. I find tendentiousness throughout the paragraph and even underlying the whole idea of the section. "American role", for starters, suggests that, well, there was an American role in the genocide. This is quite a conceptual leap; was there, for instance, a Chinese role and an Indian role and an Australian role, which "facilitated" the genocide "mostly by decisions of ommission"? The ideological underpinning of this argument seems to be that all terrible things in the world are the responsibility of the United States, a country which seems to be selected arbitrarily as blameworthy. The citations fail to establish this connection.

This radical presupposition is then advanced with unrelated citations to various disparate people and events to create a web of original research backing it, in my view. The citation to the National Security Archive, for instance, subtitled "The US and the Genocide in Rwanda 1994 Evidence of Inaction", seems to be critical of the inaction of the United States in the events, a criticism which is used to cite an argument about the role (action) of the United States in the genocide. Naturally, this reference's talk of humanitarian assistance from the United States (an actual role; an actual action) is omitted from the Wikipedia page, in keeping with what seems to me a POV telling of these events.

I still feel quite strongly that this section should be completely deleted, or retitled and completely rewritten. But I am open to being convinced otherwise! Anyone care to take a shot? For now I'm going to add some tags; I hope this seems like an equitable short term solution. Cheers, DBaba (talk) 19:19, 22 August 2009 (UTC)

Also, could we do specific citations for each of those five bulleted points? There are numerous PDFs in the website linked to, so could we single out the specific PDF doc per bullet for clarity? And also a connection that states that, for instance, Warren Christopher's failure to use the word genocide in public sooner "facilitated or extended" the genocide. That statement, "facilitated or extended the genocide", is supported with these bullets, but the bullets do not seem to substantiate that analysis. DBaba (talk) 19:30, 22 August 2009 (UTC)
Responding to the assertions in your original post above, the US isn't singled out arbitrarily. It is singled out because it was the world's only superpower after the fall of the Soviet Union and the notion of humanitarian intervention was quite current in US policy circles, right up to the Battle of Mogadishu illustrating that it's not possible to have a military intervention without sacrifice. Certainly, of the non-African states, France, the US and Belgium had the clearest intelligence on what was going on in Rwanda and made decisions not to get involved for various reasons.
There's some early discussion on the this talk page where I complain about how the article has become "what foreign powers didn't do in Rwanda", rather than "how the genocide happened." I would support cutting down, or moving to Role of the international community in the Rwandan Genocide, most of the content specific to what foreign nations didn't do. That said, during the genocide there was a fair amount of hiding behind the utterly false "ancient tribal hatreds" figleaf, which allowed foreigners throw up their hands and say they couldn't do anything, when they meant "wouldn't". There does need to be some context that (1) the genocide was a political, manufactured event that scholars have credibly argued was subject to change under outside pressure and (2) the foreign governments most capable of that pressure chose not to use it. - BanyanTree 04:37, 23 August 2009 (UTC)

Link to Propaganda

I wanted to request a link to also I wish that the Media Propaganda section would tell me which had the greater influence: radio or newspapers? And why does Wikipedia lack a separate article on radio propaganda? Lord Haw Haw would not approve, Thanks, Rumjal

--rumjal 22:12, 25 August 2009 (UTC) —Preceding unsigned comment added by Rumjal (talkcontribs)

  1. ^ a b c d e >Des Forges, Alison (1999). Leave None to Tell the Story: Genocide in Rwanda. Human Rights Watch. ISBN ISBN 1-56432-171-1 Check |isbn= value: invalid character (help). Retrieved 2007-01-12. 
  2. ^ See, e.g., Rwanda: How the genocide happened, BBC, April 1 2004, which gives an estimate of 800,000, and OAU sets inquiry into Rwanda genocide, Africa Recovery, Vol. 12 1#1 (August 1998), page 4, which estimates the number at between 500,000 and 1,000,000.
  3. ^ See, e.g., Rwanda: How the genocide happened, BBC, April 1 2004, which gives an estimate of 800,000, and OAU sets inquiry into Rwanda genocide, Africa Recovery, Vol. 12 1#1 (August 1998), page 4, which estimates the number at between 500,000 and 1,000,000.
  4. ^ See, e.g., Rwanda: How the genocide happened, BBC, April 1 2004, which gives an estimate of 800,000, and OAU sets inquiry into Rwanda genocide, Africa Recovery, Vol. 12 1#1 (August 1998), page 4, which estimates the number at between 500,000 and 1,000,000.
  5. ^ See, e.g., Rwanda: How the genocide happened, BBC, April 1 2004, which gives an estimate of 800,000, and OAU sets inquiry into Rwanda genocide, Africa Recovery, Vol. 12 1#1 (August 1998), page 4, which estimates the number at between 500,000 and 1,000,000.
  6. ^ See, e.g., Rwanda: How the genocide happened, BBC, April 1 2004, which gives an estimate of 800,000, and OAU sets inquiry into Rwanda genocide, Africa Recovery, Vol. 12 1#1 (August 1998), page 4, which estimates the number at between 500,000 and 1,000,000.