Rwanda: When Seeking Peace Becomes Terrorism
by Felicien Kanyamibwa, PhD
May 19, 2011
On May 5, 2011, the Rwandan New Times media outlet, widely known to be a mouthpiece of the Rwandan President General Paul Kagame and his Intelligence Services, published an article written by Tom Ndahiro, one of the shadow communication advisors to the Rwandan President. The article titled “Rwanda: Al Qaeda Boss Dead, As Rwandan Terrorists And Genocidaires Enjoy Impunity” suggests that Rwanda intelligence must use as a model the heroic action of the United States elite military to eliminate the most notorious terrorist to hunt down Rwanda opposition leaders in the diaspora and assassinate them. Among the people the advisor of the Rwandan President General Paul Kagame listed are two American citizens: Dr. Jean Marie Vianney Higiro and Dr. Felicien Kanyamibwa.
It is not necessary to dwell on the legal and diplomatic implications stemming from the fact that a foreign government, the Government of Rwanda, is planning assassinations of US citizens. The matter is for the US State Department, US Homeland Security, US Department of Justice, and the FBI to deal with.
In this discourse we will only try to analyze how the Rwandan government got to this point of openly calling for and often following through with the assassination of opposition leaders based in foreign countries. We conclude by calling on The New Times and close associates of General Paul Kagame to help General Kagame and his regime to free themselves from the shackles of absolute power, tyranny, criminal enterprises, and radicalism. We invite General Paul Kagame to strive, after 16 years of absolute power to reconstruct the Rwandan nation on a model [not] based on the failed past, but into a future Rwanda where our descendants will rise above what has until now divided Rwandans; a Rwanda where our children and our descendants will not live in the confrontation but rather would spend their time exploring and putting into practice solutions for the development of Rwanda.
A MISGUIDED ADVISOR OR A COURTIER WITH HATRED
Wether Tom Ndahiro is misguided or driven by hatred and propaganda, his fallacious argumentation can only be paralleled with his lack of judgment.
First, the United States of America have a legitimate, democratic and law abiding government with institutions accepted by and working for the people. The current Rwandan government led by General Paul Kagame is a dictatorship, a tyranny led by a military junta that holds the economic, military, judiciary and social power within the hands of a small clique.
Second, the actions by the Government of the United States in the fight against international terrorism are legal, legitimate and justified. Moreover, these actions are endorsed by the International Community.
Third, what are these two people marked by Tom Ndahiro accused of? Is opposing the Rwandan regime a crime? This regime is accused of crimes against humanity, war crimes, genocide and terrorism by the United Nations and the French and Spanish judiciary systems.
By his acts, hence engaging the Rwanda government in assassination plots, Tom Ndahiro is not only misguided, but also, and fortunately, has once again reminded people around the World of the wickedness of the current Rwandan government.
TOM NDAHIRO‘S REPEATED CALLS FOR ASSASSINATION OF UNITED STATES OF AMERICA AND EUROPEAN CITIZENS
This is not the first time Tom Ndahiro writes such heinous articles and calls for the elimination of US citizens. Late last year, in several posts on blogs (see http://friendsofevil.wordpress.com/2010/08/30/academics-lawyers-and-journalists-joined-in-genocide-denial/ and http://friendsofevil.wordpress.com/2010/12/10/spanish-fame-and-shame-manipulations-of-ngos-and-media/) Tom Ndahiro set the tone and put the scarlet mark on key individuals, mostly US academics, intellectuals, lawyers, journalists and human activists and advocated for their elimination.
A non exclusive list of individuals targeted by the Rwandan government and Tom Ndahiro’s motives may be found on AfroAmerica Network(http://www.afroamerica.net ), The Rwanda Hit List on Conscious Being Alliance and on http://friendsofevil.wordpress.com a Rwandan Government blog run by Tom Ndahiro.
On these lists one may find the names of Prof Peter Erlinder, Ann Garrison, New York Times Journalist Jeffrey Gettlemen, Professors Kenneth Gallant, Eric Janus, Christian Davenport, Stam Allan, William Van der Griend, and Mick Collins, Spanish Senator Pere Sampol, Spanish Humanitarian Juan Carrero, etc. But there are also the two names: Dr. Jean Marie Vianney Higiro and Dr. Felicien Kanyamibwa. The Rwanda President General Paul Kagame’s Advisor Tom Ndahiro advocates the elimination of the two individuals for being “the founders of [ Organization for Peace and Justice and Development in Rwanda (OPJDR)] organisation” and advocating to “set up an international commission to investigate the genocide committed by the RPF in Rwanda and DRC.” Let us recall that the United Nations Human Rights Commission has already documented in what is know as the “DRC: Mapping Human Rights Violations 1993-2003 Report” published by the UN on October 1, 2010, the genocide and ethnic cleansing of Rwandans and Congolese committed between 1993 – 2003 by the current rulers of Rwanda, the Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF), and its army.
AN ELABORATE CAMPAIGN OF ASSASSINATION OF OPPOSITION FIGURES
The call for the assassination of opposition figures is actually a serious matter, not just a bad discourse from a misguided presidential advisor. The call is part of the overall campaign of assassination unleashed by the Rwandan government around the globe.
Last year alone, several Rwandans escaped or succumbed to assassinations by Rwandan intelligence operatives both inside and outside Rwanda. Two failed attempts in foreign countries have raised attention:
General Kayumba Nyamwasa, a former Army Chief of Staff within the military junta ruling Rwanda left the country after being targeted for opposing the policies of the junta he was supposed to serve. A few month after fleeing the country, he escaped an assassination attempt in South Africa in June 2010. He was shot and fortunately recovered. Alleged assassins, believed to be Rwandan Intelligence Operatives by the South African Government police are awaiting trial. The assassination attempt led to South Africa recalling its Ambassador to Rwanda up to now.
In December 2010 and January 2011, Major Emmanuel Munyaruguru barely escaped two assassination attempts when criminals suspected by the Norwegian police of working for the Rwandan intelligence services based in Belgium and London barely missed him.
A few years ago, a Rwandan operative agent tried to assassinate Dr. Jean Marie Vianney Higiro by poisoning. The suspected Rwandan agent disappeared without trace. There are other cases under investigation in several countries, with the initial findings pointing to the involvement of Rwandan operatives. Also, we are aware of constant harassments directed against relatives and family members of opposition leaders.
Major Emmanuel Munyaruguru happens to be the brother of Dr. Felicien Kanyamibwa. After several years of the Rwandan Government lobbying the Norwegian government to arrest Emmanuel Munyaruguru, in October 2010 the Norwegian Government, through the Royal Prosecution, officially rejected the Rwandan allegations and demands. What the Rwandan Government could not get through the judicial system and diplomatic channels, tried to get it through the failed assassination attempts.
In the October 13, 2010 article titled “Der Krieg der Rebellen ist nicht vorbei (The War of the Rebels is not over, here ), German news media group, Die Tageszeitung or TAZ heavily cited Rakiya Omaar, the Director of African Rights, close to the Rwandan Military intelligence and Security Services and often on the payroll of the Rwandan Government, apparently sent on a special mission to slender Dr. Felicien Kanyamibwa and his brother Major Emmanuel Munyaruguru in mainstream media outlets.
According to TAZ, citing Rakiya Omaar: “There are already rumors of a collaboration between the FDLR and RUD in Eastern Congo and an international collaboration between the two groups is possible. ”
TAZ added, again citing Rakiya Omaar that “RUD-Urunana was established in 2005 and has its own leadership in the U.S. RUD-Urunana presents a more moderate and pragmatic counterbalance to the FDLR. The leaders of RUD-Urunana held the opinion and demanded that the leaders of FDLR accused of mass crimes should be removed form the leadership positions. When other FDLR leaders refused, RUD-Urunana was created, starting with 400 fighters.”
In the same article TAZ alleges that the most likely shift of alliances will involve RUD-Urunana taking over the Rwandan rebels of the Forces Democratiques de Liberation du Rwanda (FDLR) and then forming a strategic coalition with the troops of the former Rwandan Army Chief of Staff and Ambassador to India, General Kayumba Nyamwasa.
TAZ also mentioned that in this new alliances shifting, Dr. Felicien Kanyamibwa, the Secretary General of RUD-Urunana who is based in USA and his brother, Major Emmanuel Munyaruguru, based in Norway are rumored to play a major role in facilitating the formation of these alliances.
Whether by coincidence or not, in his latest articles Tom Ndahiro states that there are people like “Paul Rusesabagina, Kayumba Nyamwasa, Theogene Rudasingwa and their party Rwanda National Congress who are happy to be associated with these tropical terrorists, and genocidaires, ” who, apparently, deserve to be assassinated by the Rwandan Government. Major Dr. Theogene Rudasingwa, a former member of the Tutsi elite ruling Rwanda, had been the Secretary General of the ruling Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF) and Rwandan Ambassador in Washington, D.C. and a Special Advisor to General Paul Kagame before fleeing to the United States.
TOM NDAHIRO’S FALLACIES AND PROPAGANDA COVER ASSASSINATION PLOTS
It is easy to point out holes, false allegations, and misinformations contained in Tom Ndahiro’s series of assassination pamphlets. For example he states that “ALIR was partially composed of ex-FAR leaders and sought to overthrow the Rwandan Government and install its leaders in control in Rwanda. A Western faction of the group, called ALIR II, was led by MUDACUMURA.”
As the Advisor to General Paul Kagame, Tom Ndahiro must know that the last of the only two overall military commanders of ALIR troops, who fought a civil war in Rwanda with some bases in Kivu and Maniema is General Paul Rwarakabije, now a General Major within the Rwandan Defense Forces, the other having been killed during the 1997-1998 Rwandan civil war.
After ALIR was dismantled, General Paul Rwarakabije joined FDLR, that was just created in 2000, and later became the overall military commander of Forces Combattantes Abacunguzi (FOCA), the armed branch of FDLR.
The armed opposition has become a scapegoat for General Paul Kagame’s failures to build democratic institutions in Rwanda and reconcile Rwandans. In trying to hide these failures, General Paul Kagame and his closest advisors have attempted to resist legitimate peaceful demands from the opposition. To the calls for peace from the opposition General Paul Kagame has responded with increasingly loud calls for assassination.
OPPOSITION’S PERVASIVE CALL FOR PEACEFUL SOLUTIONS
On December 23, 2008, as a right to respond to another article published in New Times and titled: “The drama of Fdlr/rud-urunana disarmament in Lubero, DR Congo” in which the Rwandan government media outlet accused RUD-Urunana of being a [Hutu] extremist organization we reminded the public of the following:
“Most of the RPR troops, based in Kasiki were Tutsis and had been living and conducting other activities with RUD-Urunana troops of Armee Nationale -Imboneza since 2006. How can then the term extremist be applied in these circumstances? Our cause would be as just and legitimate, regardless of the ethnic background of those, with legitimate aspirations, who would be pursuing it. However, the presence of all the components of the Rwandan social and historical fabric reinforces the confidence of the Rwandan people in the legitimacy of our struggle, the positive goals of our purposes, and the visionary path set by the leaders.
Regarding our aspirations, they may be resumed in one simple and short sentence: Rwanda belongs to all Rwandans. In January 2008, after [we] visited the DRC and its government, we challenged General Paul Kagame, in our 24 January 2008 statement in Kinshasa on peace in the Great Lakes Region, “for reconstructing the Rwandan nation on a model [not] based on the failed past, but into a future Rwanda where our descendants will rise above what has until now divided Rwandans; a Rwanda where our children and our descendants will not live in the confrontation but rather would spend their time exploring and putting into practice solutions for the development of Rwanda.”
Yet again, in Kasiki, on July 31, 2008, we invited General Paul Kagame to open the doors for the Rwandan refugees to go home in peace. We invited him, first as a human being, second as a former refugee, and third as the president of Rwanda. This peaceful challenge to general Paul Kagame has been the constance of our calls and we expressed on several occasions our willingness to meet him anytime under the facilitation from genuine mediators.
PAUL KAGAME NEEDS TO MAKE A CHOICE BETWEEN PEACE AND ASSASSINATION
We have presented General Paul Kagame with two choices: either he is a leader, then he will have to move beyond bitterness, psychological frustrations, and retribution, or he remains a man whose tragic life would only be remembered as the untamed source of a river of blood and suffering. Yes, he spent 30 years in exile. But, Mandela spent close to those years in jail, with daily forced labor. Long before his liberation from prison, Mandela, a great leader, chose to free himself from the venom of hatred. As soon as Mandela came to that decision, he became a free man. If he had not made that decision, no one can fathom what would have become of South Africa after he became president.
Kagame failed to become a leader when he took power in 1994, chose to remain the prisoner of his hatred and resulting vices, and mounted on the back of a baby tiger. For 16 years now he has been sitting on the back of a growing tiger. He should not wait until the tiger becomes a monstrous beast that ultimately would devour him. General Paul Kagame does not need people like Tom Ndahiro. He should not hide behind such henchmen and news media sold to the government to call for the assassination of opposition figures, leaders, or members.
The New Times and close associates of General Paul Kagame need to help General Kagame and his regime to free themselves from the shackles of absolute power, tyranny, criminal enterprises, and radicalism. Past experiences show that medias and courtiers that heaped praises on misguided leaders and tyrants and overlooked the plight of the people ended up doing a disservice to the entire nation. General Paul Kagame, his controlled media outlets, especially the New Times, and his courtiers and cronies, such as Tom Ndahiro, should heed the lessons of history. They should look around and pay attention to the winds of freedom blowing around Africa and the whole World. Africans, like other people in the World, do not need tyrannic regimes.
Felicien Kanyamibwa, PhD
Secretary General of RUD-Urunana
President, National Democratic Congress (NDC)
New Jersey, United States of America.
May 19, 2011.