ChickenBones: A Journal

for Literary & Artistic African-American Themes

   

Home   ChickenBones Store (Books, DVDs, Music, and more) 

Google
 

There, they hunted down and killed untold thousands of old men, women and children

in 600 documented incidents that are, at the least, war crimes and crimes against humanity.

The report’s authors clearly believe the Tutsis engaged in outright genocide—the purposeful

eradication of a people—since Kagame’s men made no distinction between

Rwandan Hutu refugees and Congolese Hutus; they killed them all.

 

 

Rwanda Crisis Could Expose U. S. Role in Congo Genocide

By Glen Ford

 

A leaked United Nations report documenting Rwandan atrocities that “could be classified as crimes of genocide” in the eastern Congo has created a political crisis that threatens to disrupt Washington’s plans to dominate the continent. Rwanda’s minority Tutsi regime—a close American client that acts as a mercenary for U.S. interests in Africa, along with Uganda— threatens to withdraw its soldiers from United Nations “peace-keeping” missions if the report is not suppressed. The UN missions in Chad, Haiti, Liberia and Sudan are actually extensions of United States foreign policy, just as Ugandan and Burundian troops prop up the U.S.-backed “government” in Somalia under the guise of “African Union” forces.

The Rwanda crisis threatens to reveal the United States’ role as enabler in the deaths of as many as six million people while Washington’s allies occupied and looted the eastern regions of the Democratic Republic of Congo. At stake is not only the reputation of Rwandan President Paul Kagame, an alumnus of the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, in Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, but the larger American strategy for militarization of Africa and exploitation of her riches.

The 545-page report details crimes committed in Congo by the Rwandan military and its allies between March, 1993, and June, 2003, and reinforces long-standing charges that Kagame’s forces were also aggressors and mass murderers during the Rwandan mass killings of 1994. When Kagame’s Tutsi rebels—previously based in Uganda—gained control of Rwanda after 100 days of fighting and ethnic cleansing, they pursued more than a million Hutu refugees into neighboring Congo.

There, they hunted down and killed untold thousands of old men, women and children in 600 documented incidents that are, at the least, war crimes and crimes against humanity. The report’s authors clearly believe the Tutsis engaged in outright genocide—the purposeful eradication of a people—since Kagame’s men made no distinction between Rwandan Hutu refugees and Congolese Hutus; they killed them all. Congolese Tutsis and kinsmen from Burundi joined Kagame’s Rwandan Tutsis in the mass murder—confirming the racial or ethnic nature of the slaughter.

The Tutsi Rwandan military stayed in eastern Congo to exploit the rare minerals of the region, employing slave labor and selling the booty to multinational corporations.

They were joined by the Ugandan military, who also set themselves up as soldier/entrepreneurs on Congolese soil. The Rwandans and Ugandans remain in the region, uniformed African gangsters in league with Euro-American corporations in a killing ground that has swallowed up possibly six million Congolese. Some estimate Congolese “excess deaths” in areas controlled by Rwanda, alone, at three and a half million. Their blood and stolen heritage has made Kigali, the Rwandan capital, a bustling beacon of capitalist enterprise—a “free market” success story.

Carnage on such a scale could not have occurred were it not for the connivance of the United States, which has nurtured Kagame at every juncture. After training him for major operational command, the U.S. funded Kagame’s rebels through its Ugandan client, President Yoweri Museveni. When Kagame’s rebels invaded Rwanda, some of them still dressed in Ugandan uniforms, the Americans dismissed the Hutu president’s complaints. When the plane carrying the Hutu president and his Burundian counterpart was shot down by a missile—almost certainly by Kagame’s men—and mass killing broke out, the US. forced the United Nations to withdraw from the country—a move that could only have been of advantage to Kagame’s well-trained and armed forces, which quickly conquered all of Rwanda. When United Nations reports showed Kagame was killing 10,000 Hutus a month inside Rwanda, even after the opposition had collapsed or fled, the United States halted an investigation. Then Kagame’s men swarmed into Congo, and the larger genocide began.

The leaked UN report cannot be put back in the bottle. Kagame, who labels all critics “genocidaires” or apologists for genocide, is exposed as “the greatest mass killer on the face of the earth, today,” as described by Edward S. Herman, co-author of The Politics of Genocide.

Kagame’s mentors and funders in the U.S. government, who aided and abetted his genocide in Congo, must be held equally accountable—if not more so, since United States corporations derive the greatest benefit from Congo’s blood minerals, and the U.S. military gains the most advantage from Rwandan and Ugandan services as mercenaries at America's beck and call in Africa.

It would be great if Kagame pitched a pathological fit and made good on his threat to withdraw his soldiers from Haiti, Chad, Liberia and Sudan. But that would seriously inconvenience the United States, whose interests the UN “peacekeeping” missions serve. Kagame has no problem killing Hutus by the millions in Congo, but he will not dare upset the superpower to which he owes his bloody career.

Source: Black Agenda Report

Glen Ford is a veteran journalist, executive editor of blackagendareport.com. In the late ’70s, he launched America’s Black Forum, a national black news TV program, and in ’87 he launched the first nationally syndicated hip-hop music show called Rap It Up. He also co-founded the weekly political journal Black Commentator in 2002. Glen Ford has been a critic of Barack Obama. Glen Ford gave very positive coverage of Cynthia McKinney, the Green Party candidate for President. Glenn Ford confessed that it was easy for even himself to get caught up in the kind of “Mecca for African Americans” that was this day of Inauguration for a black president   Glen.Ford@BlackAgendaReport.com

posted 2 September 2010

*   *   *   *   *

Christian Davenport—Rethinking Rwanda, 1994

Christian Davenport's "Rethinking Rwanda, 1994" at the Kroc Institute - University of Notre Dame (April 8, 2010). Sixteen years ago, the world watched as Rwanda descended into large-scale violence that left up to a million people dead. This was followed by massive out-migration (nearly half the country), untold amounts of internal displacement, and a deluge of articles, TV news features, movies, and commentary from human rights activists, political leaders, and ordinary people from around the world... Dec 15, 2010

*   *   *   *   *

The Politics of Genocide

By Edward S. Herman and David Peterson

In this impressive book, Edward S. Herman and David Peterson examine the uses and abuses of the word “genocide.” They argue persuasively that the label is highly politicized and that in the United States it is used by the government, journalists, and academics to brand as evil those nations and political movements that in one way or another interfere with the imperial interests of U.S. capitalism.

Thus the word “genocide” is seldom applied when the perpetrators are U.S. allies (or even the United States itself), while it is used almost indiscriminately when murders are committed or are alleged to have been committed by enemies of the United States and U.S. business interests.

One set of rules applies to cases such as U.S. aggression in Vietnam, Israeli oppression of Palestinians, Indonesian slaughter of so-called communists and the people of East Timor, U.S. bombings in Serbia and Kosovo, the U.S. war of “liberation” in Iraq, and mass murders committed by U.S. allies in Rwanda and the Republic of Congo.

One set of rules applies to cases such as U.S. aggression in Vietnam, Israeli oppression of Palestinians, Indonesian slaughter of so-called communists and the people of East Timor, U.S. bombings in Serbia and Kosovo, the U.S. war of “liberation” in Iraq, and mass murders committed by U.S. allies in Rwanda and the Republic of Congo. Another set applies to cases such as Serbian aggression in Kosovo and Bosnia, killings carried out by U.S. enemies in Rwanda and Darfur, Saddam Hussein, any and all actions by Iran, and a host of others.

With its careful and voluminous documentation, close reading of the U.S. media and political and scholarly writing on the subject, and clear and incisive charts, The Politics of Genocide is both a damning condemnation and stunning exposé of a deeply rooted and effective system of propaganda aimed at deceiving the population while promoting the expansion of a cruel and heartless imperial system.

*   *   *   *   *

Protecting Civilians in Congo

Where many see a hopeless situation, Human Rights Watch sees the need to bring justice to victims and greater security to all. From our expert researchers documenting abuses on the ground to our executive director meeting with Congo's president, we have been waging an ambitious, multi-pronged campaign to bring about real change. To learn more, visit: www.hrw.org  

*   *   *   *   *

Profound Evil in the Congo

Perhaps we’ve heard so little about them because the crimes are so unspeakable, the evil so profound. For years now, in the Democratic Republic of Congo, marauding bands of soldiers and militias have been waging a war of rape and destruction against women.—Bob Herbert

*   *   *   *   *

HBO Exposé Sheds Light on African Country’s Violence against Women

*   *   *   *   *

 

Hutu and Tutsi  

By Aimable Twagilimana

Gr 5-9—A Rwandan linguist explains the people of Rwanda and Burundi. He deals primarily with Rwanda, and a large portion of the book (17 pages of 60) concerns Hutu/Tutsi politics and violence since 1959. This emphasis tends to obscure the roots of the problem in the colonial period. Twagilimana accurately stresses that the Hutu, Tutsi (and Twa) share language, religion, and space, with their identities having been somewhat flexible and based on unequal status. He discusses the European colonials' racial stereotypes but does not specify the profound impact of European "scientific" racism, which assumed that Tutsi and Hutu were different "races," with the Hutu born to be forever inferior.Western-educated Africans absorbed this view. Moreover, the Belgians therefore recruited Tutsi to dominate the Church, army, and civil service; most secondary school places went to the Tutsi minority; Hutu kingdoms were "Tutsified"; and changes in land rights benefited the Tutsi. —School Library Journal

*   *   *   *   *

 

As We Forgive: Stories of Reconciliation from Rwanda

By Catherine Claire Larson

Rwanda—bloodied, scarred and nearly destroyed by the 1994 brutality of the Hutu genocide of Tutsis—is now called an uncharted case study in forgiveness by author Larson, who was inspired by the award-winning film As We Forgive. Individual stories form prototypes: there is Rosaria, left for dead in a pile of bodies, who forgives her sisters killer. And Chantal, whose family is brutally murdered yet who forgives her neighbor for the crimes. Devota, mutilated and left for dead, survives, forgives and eventually adopts several orphans. Each story is horrible and deeply personal as Larson mines the truths of forgiveness deep in each ones tale. Helpful interludes offer readers hands-on ways to facilitate forgiveness and take the next step to reconciliation in their own lives. This isn't an easy book to read or digest, yet its message is mandatory: Forgiveness can push out the borders of what we believe is possible. Reconciliation can offer us a glimpse of the transfigured world to come.—Publishers Weekly

*   *   *   *   *

Rwanda Ten Years after   Rwanda Genocide Conference  Clinton Administration  The Struggle Odes  Ode #95

The Greatest Silence: Rape in the Congo (Film Review by Kam Williams)

 

 

*   *   *   *   *

Rape Crisis in Congo Tied to Mining ActivityWashington Eve Ensler, author of The Vagina Monologues, helped launch an international awareness raising campaign called V-Day in 2007 to end sexual violence in eastern Congo. UNICEF estimates that hundreds of thousands of girls have been raped in the last decade in the two eastern provinces of North Kivu and South Kivu. "Corporate greed, fueled by capitalist consumption, and the rape of women have merged into a single nightmare," Eve Ensler said at U.S. Senate hearings on May 13. "Women's bodies are the battleground of an economic war." Ensler said that international mining companies with significant investments in eastern Congo value economic interest over the bodies of women by trading with rebels who use rape as a tactic of war in areas rich in coltan, gold and tin.

"Military solutions are no longer an option," she said. "All they do is bring about the rape of more women." The United States has invested more than $700 million in humanitarian aid and peacekeeping to Congo, according to the U.S. Department of State.

Prendergast said this money will do nothing to root out the economic causes of eastern Congo's conflict and sexual violence.

He said a comprehensive long-term strategy to combat rape needs to change the economic calculus of armed groups. Prendergast asked senators to support the Congo Conflict Minerals Act, which was introduced by Kansas Sen. Sam Brownback, Illinois Sen. Dick Durbin and Wisconsin Sen. Russ Feingold in April of this year.

The bill aims to break the link between resource exploitation and armed conflict in eastern Congo by requiring companies trading minerals with Congo or neighboring states to disclose mine locations and monitor the financing of armed groups in eastern Congo's mineral-rich areas.

"The sooner the illicit conflict minerals trade is eliminated, the sooner the people of Congo will benefit from their own resources," said Prendergrast. U.S. consumers, Prendergrast said, can also help by pressuring major electronic companies - from Apple to Sony - to certify that cell phones, computers and other products contain "conflict-free minerals," a campaign tactic popularized by the Sierra Leone-based film Blood Diamonds.     Such a process would use a tracking system for components, similar to that developed in 2007 under the Kimberly Process. This international certification scheme ensures that trade in rough diamonds doesn't fuel war, as it did in Angola, Cote d'Ivoire, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Sierra Leone during the 1990s.

Germany has already developed a pilot fingerprinting system for tin that could be expanded to other minerals and help establish certified trading chains, linking legitimate mining sites to the international market. Truthout

*   *   *   *   *

Congo has attracted attention in the media [as a place that is suffering] systematic rape in war. One statistic quoted is 200,000 rapes since the beginning of the war 14 years ago, and it is certainly an underestimate.

When in Congo, I met government representatives and particularly women who had been raped and violated. It was interesting but also disappointing - nothing is getting better and more and more civilians are committing rapes.

But I should be fair and say that there has been progress, the government has introduced laws against rape, it has a national plan and there is political will. There is a lot to do to implement the legislation, but now there is an ambitious legal ground to stand on to be implemented by the police, judiciary and health care. Margot Wallstrom - "There Is Almost Total Impunity for Rape in Congo"

*   *   *   *   *

How did Rwanda cut poverty so much?—16 February 2012—The small African nation of Rwanda recently announced that it had cut poverty by 12% in six years, from 57% of its population to 45%. That equals roughly a million Rwandans emerging from poverty -- one of the most stunning drops in the world.It's a remarkable achievement for Rwanda, which has emerged from civil war and a bloody ethnic genocide in the 1990s. How did it happen? The Times quizzed Paul Collier, director of the Center for the Study of African Economies at Oxford University, about the  numbers.

How did Rwanda cut its poverty so much?—There were one or two helpful events, notably the rise in world coffee prices, which pumped money into the rural economy, but, of course, overall the global economy since 2005 has not provided an easy environment for success. Hence, most of the achievement is likely due to domestic policies. Rwanda is the nearest that Africa gets to an East Asian-style “developmental state,” where the government gets serious about trying to grow the economy and where the president runs a tight ship within government built on performance rather than patronage. There were strong supporting policies for the rural poor—the “one cow” program [that distributed cows to poor households free of charge], which spread assets, and the improvements in health programs. Alongside this, the economy was well managed, with inflation kept low, and the business environment improved, both of which helped the main city, Kigali, to grow. Growth in Kigali then spread benefits to rural areas—the most successful rural districts were those closest to Kigali.

When you say well managed, what do you mean? What choices did the government make that were signs of good management?—Basically, [President Paul] Kagame built a culture of performance at the top of the civil service. Ministers were well paid, but set targets. If they missed the targets there were consequences. Each year, the government holds a whole-of-government retreat where these performances are reviewed: good performance rewarded, and poor performers required to explain themselves.An example is the strategy to improve Rwanda's rating on the World Bank's “Doing Business” annual rating, where over the course of six years the country moved from around 140th to 60th in the world rankings. Each component of the ratings was assigned each year to an appropriate minister. So over time, a cadre of government officials has been built up who believe in their ability not just to strategize but to get things done.— LaTimesBlogs

 *   *   *   *   *

AALBC.com's 25 Best Selling Books


 

Fiction

#1 - Justify My Thug by Wahida Clark
#2 - Flyy Girl by Omar Tyree
#3 - Head Bangers: An APF Sexcapade by Zane
#4 - Life Is Short But Wide by J. California Cooper
#5 - Stackin' Paper 2 Genesis' Payback by Joy King
#6 - Thug Lovin' (Thug 4) by Wahida Clark
#7 - When I Get Where I'm Going by Cheryl Robinson
#8 - Casting the First Stone by Kimberla Lawson Roby
#9 - The Sex Chronicles: Shattering the Myth by Zane

#10 - Covenant: A Thriller  by Brandon Massey

#11 - Diary Of A Street Diva  by Ashley and JaQuavis

#12 - Don't Ever Tell  by Brandon Massey

#13 - For colored girls who have considered suicide  by Ntozake Shange

#14 - For the Love of Money : A Novel by Omar Tyree

#15 - Homemade Loves  by J. California Cooper

#16 - The Future Has a Past: Stories by J. California Cooper

#17 - Player Haters by Carl Weber

#18 - Purple Panties: An Eroticanoir.com Anthology by Sidney Molare

#19 - Stackin' Paper by Joy King

#20 - Children of the Street: An Inspector Darko Dawson Mystery by Kwei Quartey

#21 - The Upper Room by Mary Monroe

#22 – Thug Matrimony  by Wahida Clark

#23 - Thugs And The Women Who Love Them by Wahida Clark

#24 - Married Men by Carl Weber

#25 - I Dreamt I Was in Heaven - The Rampage of the Rufus Buck Gang by Leonce Gaiter

Non-fiction

#1 - Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention by Manning Marable
#2 - Confessions of a Video Vixen by Karrine Steffans
#3 - Dear G-Spot: Straight Talk About Sex and Love by Zane
#4 - Letters to a Young Brother: MANifest Your Destiny by Hill Harper
#5 - Peace from Broken Pieces: How to Get Through What You're Going Through by Iyanla Vanzant
#6 - Selected Writings and Speeches of Marcus Garvey by Marcus Garvey
#7 - The Ebony Cookbook: A Date with a Dish by Freda DeKnight
#8 - The Isis Papers: The Keys to the Colors by Frances Cress Welsing
#9 - The Mis-Education of the Negro by Carter Godwin Woodson

#10 - John Henrik Clarke and the Power of Africana History  by Ahati N. N. Toure

#11 - Fail Up: 20 Lessons on Building Success from Failure by Tavis Smiley

#12 -The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander

#13 - The Black Male Handbook: A Blueprint for Life by Kevin Powell

#14 - The Other Wes Moore: One Name, Two Fates by Wes Moore

#15 - Why Men Fear Marriage: The Surprising Truth Behind Why So Many Men Can't Commit  by RM Johnson

#16 - Black Titan: A.G. Gaston and the Making of a Black American Millionaire by Carol Jenkins

#17 - Brainwashed: Challenging the Myth of Black Inferiority by Tom Burrell

#18 - A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life's Purpose by Eckhart Tolle

#19 - John Oliver Killens: A Life of Black Literary Activism by Keith Gilyard

#20 - Alain L. Locke: The Biography of a Philosopher by Leonard Harris

#21 - Age Ain't Nothing but a Number: Black Women Explore Midlife by Carleen Brice

#22 - 2012 Guide to Literary Agents by Chuck Sambuchino
#23 - Chicken Soup for the Prisoner's Soul by Tom Lagana
#24 - 101 Things Every Boy/Young Man of Color Should Know by LaMarr Darnell Shields

#25 - Beyond the Black Lady: Sexuality and the New African American Middle Class  by Lisa B. Thompson

*   *   *   *   *

The Warmth of Other Suns

The Epic Story of America's Great Migration

By Isabel Wilkerson

Ida Mae Brandon Gladney, a sharecropper's wife, left Mississippi for Milwaukee in 1937, after her cousin was falsely accused of stealing a white man's turkeys and was almost beaten to death. In 1945, George Swanson Starling, a citrus picker, fled Florida for Harlem after learning of the grove owners' plans to give him a "necktie party" (a lynching). Robert Joseph Pershing Foster made his trek from Louisiana to California in 1953, embittered by "the absurdity that he was doing surgery for the United States Army and couldn't operate in his own home town." Anchored to these three stories is Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist Wilkerson's magnificent, extensively researched study of the "great migration," the exodus of six million black Southerners out of the terror of Jim Crow to an "uncertain existence" in the North and Midwest.

Wilkerson deftly incorporates sociological and historical studies into the novelistic narratives of Gladney, Starling, and Pershing settling in new lands, building anew, and often finding that they have not left racism behind. The drama, poignancy, and romance of a classic immigrant saga pervade this book, hold the reader in its grasp, and resonate long after the reading is done.

*   *   *   *   *

 

Blacks in Hispanic Literature: Critical Essays

Edited by Miriam DeCosta-Willis 

Blacks in Hispanic Literature is a collection of fourteen essays by scholars and creative writers from Africa and the Americas. Called one of two significant critical works on Afro-Hispanic literature to appear in the late 1970s, it includes the pioneering studies of Carter G. Woodson and Valaurez B. Spratlin, published in the 1930s, as well as the essays of scholars whose interpretations were shaped by the Black aesthetic. The early essays, primarily of the Black-as-subject in Spanish medieval and Golden Age literature, provide an historical context for understanding 20th-century creative works by African-descended, Hispanophone writers, such as Cuban Nicolás Guillén and Ecuadorean poet, novelist, and scholar Adalberto Ortiz, whose essay analyzes the significance of Negritude in Latin America.

This collaborative text set the tone for later conferences in which writers and scholars worked together to promote, disseminate, and critique the literature of Spanish-speaking people of African descent. . . . Cited by a literary critic in 2004 as "the seminal study in the field of Afro-Hispanic Literature . . . on which most scholars in the field 'cut their teeth'."

*   *   *   *   *

Sister Citizen: Shame, Stereotypes, and Black Women in America

By Melissa V. Harris-Perry

According to the author, this society has historically exerted considerable pressure on black females to fit into one of a handful of stereotypes, primarily, the Mammy, the Matriarch or the Jezebel.  The selfless Mammy’s behavior is marked by a slavish devotion to white folks’ domestic concerns, often at the expense of those of her own family’s needs. By contrast, the relatively-hedonistic Jezebel is a sexually-insatiable temptress. And the Matriarch is generally thought of as an emasculating figure who denigrates black men, ala the characters Sapphire and Aunt Esther on the television shows Amos and Andy and Sanford and Son, respectively.     

Professor Perry points out how the propagation of these harmful myths have served the mainstream culture well. For instance, the Mammy suggests that it is almost second nature for black females to feel a maternal instinct towards Caucasian babies.

As for the source of the Jezebel, black women had no control over their own bodies during slavery given that they were being auctioned off and bred to maximize profits. Nonetheless, it was in the interest of plantation owners to propagate the lie that sisters were sluts inclined to mate indiscriminately.

*   *   *   *   *

The White Masters of the World

From The World and Africa, 1965

By W. E. B. Du Bois

W. E. B. Du Bois’ Arraignment and Indictment of White Civilization (Fletcher)

*   *   *   *   *

Ancient African Nations

*   *   *   *   *

If you like this page consider making a donation

online through PayPal

*   *   *   *   *

Negro Digest / Black World

Browse all issues


1950        1960        1965        1970        1975        1980        1985        1990        1995        2000 ____ 2005        

Enjoy!

*   *   *   *   *

The Death of Emmett Till by Bob Dylan  The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll  Only a Pawn in Their Game

Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson Thanks America for Slavery / George Jackson  / Hurricane Carter

*   *   *   *   *

The Journal of Negro History issues at Project Gutenberg

The Haitian Declaration of Independence 1804  / January 1, 1804 -- The Founding of Haiti 

*   *   *   *   *

*   *   *   *   *

ChickenBones Store (Books, DVDs, Music, and more)

 

 

 

 

 

update 2 March 2012

 

 

 

Home  The African World  Transitional Writings on Africa  Glen Ford

Related files:    Profound Evil in the Congo   U. S. Role in Congo Genocide   Thinkable Genocide

Rwanda Ten Years after   Rwanda Genocide Conference  Clinton Administration  The Struggle Odes  Ode #95  Thinkable Genocide