Sample Assignment Paper on the Rwandan Genocide

Political issues that played a role leading to the genocide were established after the independence of the nation. In understanding these issues, it is essential to examine the Tutsi and the Hutu’s association before the colonial era (Stanton, 2004). Earlier on, the two groups were social groups that were founded on wealth and occupation. Since the colonialists could not understand the culture of the natives, they constituted ethnic backgrounds based on the patrimonial side. Therefore, ethnic tensions were, therefore, a creation of the government.

Immediately after gaining independence, ethnic appeals were used to gain power by the political leaders. To maintain political status, the Kayibanda regime massacred the Tutsi opposition. The killings were firstly a result of political pressures to give up power. Ethical violence became a common tool through which the government could use to gain political control. To drift focus from the declining economic fortunes of the country, the government in the 1980s reignited the ethnic tensions between the Hutus and the Tutsis. after the death of Habyarimana, the Hutus killed the Tutsis and the moderate Hutus, to seize and consolidate power.

According to (Stanton, 2004), the U.N. failed to intervene because they were not adequately armed for the genocide. They were numbered 100,000 whereas they required at least 5,000 authorized troops and reinforcements who were well trained and well supplied with the authority to stop killing. It is believed, nonetheless, that the United Nation (UN) could have done more to prevent the genocide. I believe that the UN was in a better position to prevent the genocide prior the attacks. This could have been made possible by collecting valid information after news of attacks was prevalent. The UN was in a position of using military force to bring peace when the government was inciting the civilians against each other. Rather than remaining silent as the wave the death spread across, the UN could have assumed moral and legal responsibilities to stop this humanitarian tragedy.

It was necessary for the UN to apply intelligence competence using early warnings and planning (Cri de Coeur, 2003). The organization was in a position to apply preventive measures such as the capability for intervention, and the political will to apply the other two approaches, which unfortunately was significantly lacking. Though the political will was by then inadequate, they could still employ it through the deployed peacekeeping force in the country. The commander on the ground had already received a convincing report of the genocide. Lack of commitment from the main power of the Security Council at the headquarters conversely drew him back. From New York headquarters, it was perceived that a greater and more powerful team at the ground could have been more proactive in salvaging the situation.

The UN did not, therefore, make any difference majorly because of the small presence of the peacekeeping force at the ground. The U.S arguably ignored the genocide because they could not tolerate their own casualties without withdrawing from the mission (Stanton, 2004). The U.S, among major stakeholders in UN peacekeeping mission, resisted the facts even though they had been forewarned. They cited poor communication, as a basis that made it hard to understand the war. Besides this, the U.N. could not make a difference that was needed because of legal malpractices. According to the advice from the Legal Advisors Office, the term ‘genocide’ was to be avoided as the killings were questioned whether they comprised of requisite intent. It was later concluded that policy makers and State Department avoided the term for the reason that they desired to avoid a duty to act.



Cri de Coeur. (2003). Lt. –Gen Romeo Dallaire, with Major Brent Beardsley. Shake Hands with

the Devil: The failure of Humanity in Rwanda. Pages 181-122

Stanton. H. G. (2004). Could the Rwandan Genocide have been Prevented? Journal of Genocide

Research. Vol. 6. No. 2, 211-228. Available at> <