The Causes Of The Rwandan Genocide

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Throughout history the world has experienced countless acts of mass violence and brutality. That being said few of these instances have rivaled that of the Rwandan genocide. In the early days of April 1994 until mid July of that same year upwards of 800,000 people were murdered, a rate that surpassed the Nazis in their killing of the Jews during the Holocaust. The perpetrators of these murders were a Rwandan ethnic group called the Hutu and their victims were not only of a separate ethnic tribe known as the Tutsi. Why and how were thousands of Hutus mobilized and able to so effectively carry out such an act of mass violence? Hutu political and military elite fearing an imminent loss of absolute power utilized long standing ethnic tensions, …show more content…
I: Overview to Ethnic Distinctions and Tensions In order to understand the ethnic divide within Introduction:
Rwanda leading up to the genocide it is necessary to analyze the country’s history. Before the arrival of the Belgian colonizers, Rwandans were already divided amongst three ethnic groups to include the Tutsi, Hutu, and Twa. Despite such distinctions these groups were rather fluid and considered homogenous in a sense due to the fact that each spoke the same language, followed the same religion, and exhibited many instances of intermingling such as marriage. This would soon change with the arrival of colonizers first being the Germans and finally the Belgians. Although the Germans were the initial colonizers soon the Belgians, who would control the region until the late 1950s, would replace them. Under Belgian control there would be a system of indirect rule in which the Tutsis would be labeled as the “natural rulers”, thus beginning the long road of strong ethnic tensions. With this decision Tutsi were given many privileges over the Hutu specifically regarding education and positions of influence. Tutsi were given
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In 1990 the RPF, numbering around 10,000, infiltrated Rwanda and waged a three-week campaign pushing into the country and conducting successful attacks on military and civilian targets. Despite the initial success of the RPF they were quickly repelled by the Rwandan Army, which was backed by foreign assistance from France, Belgium and Zaire. Over the next three years the RPF would continue to conduct guerilla warfare in the region in order to further the political agenda of displaced Tutsi and such operations would not only undermine the Hutu regime and prove the validity of the RPF as an opponent in the political sphere. The three-year civil war would then lead to the biggest threat and event that would urge the regime to put the wheels in motion for the impending

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