The Rwandan Genocide
“It is our responsibility to empower the powerless while giving voice to the voiceless”
-(Irwin Cotler “Six Lessons from the Rwandan Genocide”)
When the Rwandan Hutu majority betrayed the Tutsi minority, a destructive mass murdering broke out where neighbor turned on neighbor and teachers killed their students; this was the start of a genocide. In this paper I will tell you about the horrors the people of Rwanda had to face while genocide destroyed their homes, and I will also tell you about the mental trauma they still face today.
Hutu and Tutsi Origins
When Rwanda was first settled, the people there raised cattle, the ones with the most cattle were considered “Tutsi” and everyone else was ‘Hutu”. Before the Europeans came and settled Rwandan, Hutu could easily change to Tutsi through marriage or by gaining cattle and Tutsi could change to Hutu by lost of cattle. It wasn’t until Belgium took control after Germany lost most of it’s colonies during World War One (and the signing of the Treaty of Versailles) that the names took on a racial role. They (the Belgians) required everyone to have an identity card that labeled them Tutsi, Hutu, or Twa- the small group of hunter-gathers who made up 1% of Rwanda’s population. The Belgians and German both thought the Tutsi minority had more European characteristics, such as lighter skin and a taller build, and gave the Tutsi all the roles of responsibility. This angered the Hutu. Later, in 1959, when
face with a rebellion instigated by the Hutu, Belgium switched the Hutu and Tutsi roles, giving the Hutu all the power in the new government. This angered the Tutsi and the animosity between the two groups has grown since then.
What Caused the...
... middle of paper ...
...d trauma healing groups have been working in Rwanda to help people with PTSD and other disorders but have only reach a small portion of the targeted group.
In the years after the genocide, we as people had questioned our past decisions and our countries decision to stay out of the genocide until it was too late. I too have question my countries decision. Why didn’t the US interfere with the genocide and be the hero my favorite historical anime, Hetalia, made it out to be? I believe not helping the innocent people being murdered in Rwanda was wrong of all the countries of the world but now it is too late to change the past and we can only look to the future. We can look to the future and hope and pray that another genocide never occurs but it’s useless. As long as there are people, there will be hate and as long as there is hate there will be murder.