The Story of Rwandan Genocide — I

A Chinese blog post about Western Interventions around the world

Once NATO started the “no-fly zone” air campaign in Libya, Chinese official propaganda machine immediately started running its ideological campaign against the so-called “Western Interventionism”.

Unanimously, Chinese official medias were reporting how Western bombs were killing innocent Libyan citizens and how brutally and shamefully an independent nation’s sovereignty was violated. However, on these Chinese official medias you can rarely find any detailed story about the background of this Libyan drama and how it was started. Neither can you find any outright denouncement on Colonel Gaddafi’s killing his fellow citizens. Through these Chinese official medias, with a little simple logical reasoning, you can easily conclude that people killed by Gaddafi are not real Libyan people, and only people killed by Western Powers are real Libyan people. You can also easily conclude that whatever Gaddafi did is always excusable and justifiable, but whatever Western Powers did is always evil and sinister. These Chinese official medias have implicitly defined the so-called “national sovereignty” as “the absolute freedom of whoever ruling the nation to do whatever they want to the ruled people”.

Here the Chinese official medias include not only the traditional news reports from news agencies but also a lot of “anonymous comments” posted on the websites to discuss these reports. Most of these comments accorded with the “mainstream official opinions”, denouncing and cursing the military operations of Western Powers. This is hardly a surprise to anyone, since China is famous for its crazily strict control over internet today. This situation gives me a déjà vu that reminds me of the Chinese propaganda running the story of Kosovo war about a decade ago. Today, more than a decade later, Chinese medias use the almost identical words and sentences to remind the world that how strong and successful the CCP’s “brain-washing” system is, and how hard and slowly the Chinese civilization is progressing, if there is any progress.

What surprises me is the progress of Chinese civilization manifested in China’s fast growing grass-root medias, such as personal blogs, Chinese twitters, and some non-official forums. Recently, I just found a blog post written by a Chinese on Rwanda, Kosovo, Iraq, and “Western Interventionism”. After reading it, I feel obliged to introduce this blog post to more English readers. Unfortunately, the original author could not be identified and this is normal in the Chinese internet jungle. I can only provide a link to where I found it, which is a Chinese blog. Also because this post is very long and not organized very well, I will not translate it word by word into English. I will only translate the important sentences and paragraphs in my eyes, and briefly explain other parts.

The link to the original post:

This is a Chinese blog website. If the Chinese fonts are not installed on your computer, you may not be able to read this website normally.

Title of the post: The Causes and Consequences of Rwanda Genocide.


On the 10th Anniversary of Rwanda Genocide, UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan said that the genocides occurring in Rwanda and Yugoslavia in 1990s are shames of the whole human species. In 1998, President Clinton flew a special trip to Somali (see the Note below) to apologize to the families of victims and announce an aid project. (Note: Here Somali might be a typo of the original author. President Clinton’s Africa Trip in 1998 didn’t include Somali according to my research. According to the context, this Somali should be replaced by Rwanda.)


The genocide in the 100 days beginning on April 7th, 1994 saw almost one million Rwandan people killed by machetes, hoes, clubs, and firearms, more than half of the Rwandan Tutsi population exterminated, with a speed of killing multiple folds of Nazis’ poisonous gas room to kill Jews.  Romeo Dallaire, the United Nations Force Commander in Rwanda at that moment, later said that as long as UN was willing to intervene, he only needed 5000 elite soldiers to stop this humanitarian catastrophe. However, US and other Western nations scared out of their wits by Somalis, turned their back on the miserable wails of hundreds of thousands of Rwandans.


Nevertheless, actually, just some calm reflections could lead us to the conclusion that it is impossible to stop the Rwanda genocide in 1994.


First of all, it’s impossible for UN to work out any resolution to authorize a military intervention in time. At that time, the Rwanda military government that was organizing and implementing the genocide was a UN Security Council member itself. Its supporters, such as France and Djibouti were also members of UN Security Council then. They all denied the existence of any genocide in Rwanda at that moment. China and Russia always opposed any UN military intervention in other nations’ domestic affairs. US and Britain were both tired of the fiasco in Somali peacekeeping operation and refused to be dragged down into the new mire. Therefore, when the diplomats in UN headquarter had finished their debates and reached a consensus painstakingly, the genocide would have been over, possible victims having been killed or run away. On June 22nd, at the late stage of this genocide, when UN Security Council passed a resolution with a 10:0 vote (5 abstaining) to authorize France to build up a peacekeeping force and send it to Rwanda, RPF immediately claimed that foreign armies were invaders to intervene the domestic affairs of Rwanda, and vowed to resist them all out once they showed up in the war zone. In fact, French peacekeeping force objectively provided an opportunity to the organizers and operators of the genocide to get away with their crimes.


Secondly, UN intervention mechanism couldn’t prevent a genocide committed by civilians as in Rwanda. UN peacekeeping force is designed to separate and supervise the two conflicting sides who are both willing to pursue peace. UN peacekeepers do not have the authority to use their weapons preemptively. Therefore, the UN order to General Dallaire was: “We cannot approve your plan to seize the arms caches since it will obviously go beyond the mandate granted under UN Security Council Resolution 872.” UN forces and Western forces could not open fire preemptively in a third-world nation. They could only defend themselves. Those Rwandans wielding machetes, clubs, and AK-47s were civilians before and after they used their weapons on other civilians. If the UN peacekeepers had wanted to stop this violence, they would cause casualties of these “civilians”. Such casualties of civilians would be denounced by public opinions worldwide. Such a peacekeeping mechanism caused the nightmare in the “safe area” designated by UN in Srebrenica of the former Yugoslavia, when the Serbian soldiers loaded their trucks with tens of thousands of civilians protected by the UN resolutions and drove them away right in front of the Dutch “peacekeepers” who could do nothing to stop it. Therefore, 7000 Muslims were massacred within 6 days. Such a peacekeeping mechanism caused 500 peacekeepers were collectively disarmed and taken hostage in Sierra Leone in 2003. Thus, the sluggish and burdensome “procedural justice” could not handle these abrupt humanitarian disasters.


Thirdly, according to the defeat of Somali peacekeeping, Rwanda genocide could not be prevented by UN under its historical circumstance. Somalia was plagued by wars and starvations for years. When Audrey Hepburn, the movie star with two months of life left before dying of her cancer, appealed to the world before the camera in Somalia to save the dying people over there, Americans were shocked and pressed American government to send emergent aid of medicines and food to Somalia, most of which were intercepted and sold by the warlords in Somali. In December 1992, UN decided to organize a peacekeeping operation code-named as “Restore Hope”. Somali warlords were upset with UN interventions and unanimously raised the flag of “nationalism” to resist the “foreign invasions”. The chairman of “United Somali Congress” Farrah Aidid ordered his military forces to ambush UN peacekeepers, killing and wounding dozens of peacekeepers. August, 1993, UN Security Council authorized the peacekeeping forces in Somalia to arrest Aidid in all necessary means. Then the UN envoy in charge of Somalia affairs asked US to send more special forces to help this operation. At this point, the UN forces backed by US and other 20 plus nations represent both conscience and justice, with legitimacy of using military powers. However, in the eyes of Somali warlords, they have more natural rights to resist the foreign military interventions in their domestic affairs.


(This paragraph briefly described the Battle of Mogadishu on Oct. 3rd, 1993, between US Task Force Ranger and Somali militiamen. The last two sentences are translated here): …… Shooting Americans was the bravery of Somalis, but being shot by Americans meant Americans massacring civilians. Hence the exposed American soldiers became the moving targets. Finally, two helicopters were shot down, 18 American Task Force members were killed, and some of their bodies were dragged on the street by Somalis in front of cameras. The video of this scene won the cheers of viewers in front of TVs one time after another till today. (Note: The correct number of US casualties should be 19. In following paragraphs, this wrong number 18 will all be corrected as 19.)


People’s Daily of China published an article saying that American public opinions were in an uproar, unanimously criticizing American government for its military operations in Somalia. At the same time, international denouncements were running full of the air non-stoppable. British former Prime Minister Edward Heath said that UN should not become the “umbrella” of American military operations. Egyptian Foreign Minister Moussa expressed his concern for what had happened in Somalia and the consequential new hurdles to the Somali national reconciliation process. French Minister of Defense Leotard accused US of going beyond the “humanitarian missions” and becoming “unbearable conflicts”. German newspaper reported that US was conducting a “dirty war” in Somalia. Although US military operations in Somalia were ordered by UN, requested by UN envoy, and representing “conscience” and “justice”, such an outcome was scary and chilling.


In White House for less than one year, President Clinton was humiliated and hence ordered the pullout from Somalia. He whined that Americans sent to Somalia thousands of tons of food and medicines while Somalis sent back to America more than a dozen of coffins of soldiers. Involving more than 20 nations, costing more than 2 billion US dollars, and lasting 27 months, the UN peacekeeping operation in Somalia was totally failed. At that time, there were 37,000-strong soldiers stationed in Somalia, instead of 5,000, just US having deployed 27,000 soldiers already. This army, 7 folds of the amount General Dallaire asked for, could not prevent the following more fierce and brutal war catastrophe that would consume tens of thousands more of Somali lives, only after more than 100 peacekeepers, who had no connection to or animosity against Somalis, sacrificed their lives in vain.


Now, someone might say: Americans should dare to sacrifice another 19 soldiers and kill 3,000 more Somalis to save the tens of thousands more of Somalis who were killed later. But would Somalis accept this solution? Would world public opinions accept this solution? Would our Chinese people support this solution? Why did Americans have to sacrifice more lives and spend more money to “win” the unanimous accusations worldwide?

(to be continued…)

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This entry was posted in People's Diplomacy, Political Economy of Democracy, The Myth of Chinese People. Bookmark the permalink.

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