I remember Rwanda

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I just finished watching Hotel Rwanda. I just finished watching Hotel Rwanda. I just….


People don’t tend to blog about Rwanda do they? I myself find it hard to reconcile the fact that I want so badly to write pages about Rwanda, and yet I want to simply bow my head in shame and say nothing because any attempt to say something noble would be completely useless and insulting.

I am ashamed Rwanda. I am a European-American… and when I look at you I feel such grief and shame. And yet… when your country experienced such horror. When neighbors killed neighbors. When 1 million corpses of 1 million humans were left to rot in the streets of Kigali, I committed a far more diabolical crime. Just like the journalist in the movie said, I sat home, watched it on TV, thought to myself — That’s Horrible — and then I went back to my daily routine. While I may have been quite young, my western life simply didn’t leave me the time or the will, apparently, to organize a movement demanding that the international community intervene and stop the genocide. Oh yes, it could most definitely have been stopped, but who had time for that… there was Monday Night Football to be watched.

It is often said that we who live in the rich countries of the world are lucky. We have the “great fortune” they say, “to have such a high standard of living.” But I don’t feel lucky. I look at my hands, and at the hands of all our governments, and all I can see is blood. All I can feel is shame and horror. A good international lawyer could and should probably make such a case, take all the governments of the world, and the people which support them through vote or taxes, and charge them with war crimes. What crime? Watching millions die when we had the power to stop it, and then simply continuing to eat our dinners.