Replying to Discussion post on Rwandan Genocide
In response to your peers’ posts, comment on the strengths and weaknesses of the international justice system versus U.S. law in relation to this example.
Please Just comment on these two posts and follow the intructions above.
1.) Should the United States have taken the lead in getting the international community to intervene and try to stop this atrocity? Explain. Absolutely The United States has the money and the resources to help. We have a lot of allies and a lot of pull to convince others to join the fight. We could have saved a lot of lives. There was even a General willing to go in and help save others. “We have guns, they have machetes, we can save people.” The saddest part in the video though, was when the gentleman said the UN didn’t care and that Rwanda wasn’t important enough because of their color.
After reading the brief and learning about the challenges faced, do you think the United Nations International Tribunal for Rwanda and the international justice system, as a whole, can make a difference? I think they are making a difference now. I don’t think they will catch everyone involved, but it goes a long way to healing the country. In regards to the International Justice system as a whole, I think it’s important to have. It sends a message to those who feel they are above the law, that there are still others who will fight and bring them to justice. I am not naive, genocide is real and current today, but we have to continue to fight, to save lives.
2.)The genocide that occurred in Rwanda was unbelievable. The lead up to the violence was equally appalling. It seems ridiculous that someone would be willing to essentially kill people they had known their entire lives simply because of their ethnicity. The government in the region ran an extremely effective propaganda campaign to rally others to their cause. It’s frustrating to see how easily people can be frenzied. In my opinion, the US should have intervened before the killing started. There were peace keeping forces in the region that were well aware of the radio messages being sent to the people there. They knew what was being suggested and did nothing. We consider ourselves the moral standard for the world but in this case weren’t. We had the resources and ability to do something substantial and chose not to. I think the location and the ethnicity of those affected played a large role in how we responded to the crisis.
I think the international justice system as a whole can make and have made a difference. They have had successes such as holding the high ranking Rwandan government officials accountable for the atrocities. The problem is that they are not necessarily proactive in their approach, Once crimes have been committed they are able to collect evidence and push for convictions but by that time lives are lost. The UN has a responsibility to proactively engage peace missions for regions that may potentially be on the brink of genocide or other human rights violations. We are currently dealing with a crisis in Syria. The government is intentionally killing and terrorizing its own people. I don’t think individual governments should intervene in every instance of dictatorships though there has to be provisions. War isn’t the answer because it only further destabilizes regions and exacerbates underlying problems.