In a recently published book, “INTERVENTIONS : A Life in War and Peace”, former U.N. Secretary-General, Kofi Annan clearly states that the U.N. failed Rwanda during the 1994 genocide against Tutsi.
This book lays out Annan’s career with the U.N. and his involvement in peace-keeping operations, for which most analysts have given him a failing grade. In dizzying beauracratic jargon, Annan indicts the U.N.
Notably, when the genocide against Tutsi broke out in 1994, the two top men at the U.N. were Africans: Secretary-General Boutros-Ghali from Egypt, and Annan, from Ghana, and at the time of the genocide, head of U.N. Peace-keeping Operations.
Annan starts off by revealing the Code Cable the U.N. received from Gen. Romeo Dallaire, UNAMIR Force Commander on January 11, 1994, warning of an impending plan to wipe out the Tutsi. In response, Annan states, “we warned Dallaire against the offensive action (he, Dallaire) envisaged.”
The book lays out, clearly, France’s machinations and un-dying support for the Habyarimana genocidal regime, going as far as deploying paratroopers to prop up a decaying regime.
Annan states that resolution 872 which created UNAMIR did NOT give it “powers or agenda for peace enforcement.” So, what was the point, I ask?
In all this, Annan clearly states there was no interest in Rwanda, adding, “At DPKO, we certainly had no genuine deep expertise on the country.”
Why was there no interest for the world body to intervene in Rwanda? Annan states that “We saw the ingredients of a disaster akin to the failed raid on Aidid in Mogadishu three months earlier.”
“There was no appetite in the international community for taking even the slightest risks with the lives of peace-keepers, certainly not in the United States.”
Translation: The lives of Rwandans were not as valuable as those of the peace-keepers.
Annan dismisses the theory that the U.N. did not know what was going on in Rwanda in April, 1994, following the downing of Habyarimana’s plane, stating that the U.S. and France had more advanced intelligence gathering capabilities in Rwanda than UNAMIR.
Without mincing words, Annan states that the genocide was “initiated by government Hutu forces.”
The book points to a report by the CIA on April 23, 1994, clearly stating that what was happening in Rwanda was a “genocide.” Yet, the U.N. and the entire international community debated, ad nauseum, on what should be done. And on April 29, 1994, the UNHCR reported that at least 200,000 people had already been killed, since April 6, 1994.
Pushed into action, the Security Council passed resolution 918 creating UNAMIR II authorizing 5,500 troops for Rwanda, but no country was willing to assist or offer troops. Annan says, “It was one of the most shocking and deeply formative experiences of my entire career…”
How did the genocide end? Annan credits RPF’s swift victory over the genocidal forces — a fact that is not debatable, never mind what the negationists claim.