RWANDA GENOCIDE

The conflict between the Hudu and the Tutsi

BY DANIEL ARGUETTA, GARRETT SKINNER, and HAYDEN STEVES

BACKGROUND

For over 20 years prior to German and then Belgian colonization, a Tutsi monarchy had controlled most of Rwanda. Belgian colonization played a role in maintaining the divide between the Tutsi and Hutu peoples. While both the Hutu and Tutsi ethnic groups existed before colonialism, Belgian rule recognized and affirmed this preexisting distinction. The word Tutsi means those "rich in cattle" and the word Hutu means "servant". The Belgians even made separate ID cards for the two tribes. When Belgian rule ended, most of the land and power were in the hands of Tutsi while the Hutu were relegated to positions of forced laborers, this sparked an everlasting hatred between the two peoples.

CAUSE OF THE CONFLICT

On April 6, 1994, Rwandan President Juvenal Habyarimana’s personal plane was shot down over Rwanda. This served as the catalyst of the genocide, and in as little as 100 days over 500,000 people were murdered. Nevertheless, the civil war that took place during the 1980's served as a foundation for it, too.

THE GENOCIDE

In short, the Rwanda Genocide is just a clash between two cultures, the Hutus and Tutsis. Like many other wars before, one felt superior to the other. Therefor, the Hutus set on a mission to eliminate the Tutsi tribe, and in a matter of 100 days had successfully and unrestrainedly murdered over 500,000 Tutsi tribe members, leaving a devastated and war-torn Rwanda in ruins.

STATISTICAL INFORMATION

UNITED NATIONS INVOLVEMENT

The U.N. did not know whether or not to get involved in the genocide. They failed to successfully intervene and stop it, and thus it grew out of control. Nowadays, they regret withdrawling their 2,500 peacekeepers, and are blamed for the mass-murder that took place, which may have been entirely prevented. The main reason that they restrained from becoming involved is that they did not feel it was right politically.

WHAT ELSE NEEDS TO BE DONE

Since most were ruthlessly slaughtered by the Hutus, there are barely any Tutsi's left. Rwanda's economy is also devastated, and has pushed the country back into a state of a developing country. Other people need to know about the genocide, that way they may help and send aid to the people living their, some without homes. The U.N. should send money and aid to Rwanda, and make an effort to get it back to how it was, without any conflict.