In April 1994 the French Embassy became the setting for the formation of the extremist Hutu Government that was to organise and carry out the meticulously planned genocide of the Tutsis. Witnesses spoke of these ministers, many now facing life imprisonment for crimes against humanity, sitting in plush embassy chairs comparing notes on where the killing was going best. Their host, the French Ambassador, later helped to evacuate those extremists to Paris, away from the apocalypse they had created. The ambassador then made a bonfire of two rooms piled high with documents linking his Government with that of the Hutu dictatorship of Juvénal Habyarimana.
Rwanda is made up mainly of two ethnic groups, the vast majority being Hutu, who, under Habyarimana’s “apartheid” State, took total control of the army, bureaucracy and government. The Tutsi, 15 per cent of the population, were banished from public life.
When François Mitterrand, then the French President, decided in 1990 to send in crack paratroopers to protect Habyarimana, his French-speaking friend and ally, it looked like just another attempt by Paris to keep a client leader in power. The danger came from across the border in Uganda. Anglophone Paul Kagame and his Rwandan Patriotic Front, made up mostly of Tutsis previously driven from their homeland by a series of earlier massacres, had invaded.
During the next three years Mitterrand had no compunction in sending in troops to save a brutal and corrupt regime. The Hutu army received millions of dollars of French weaponry; and the French elite training corps trained its Rwandan allies in how to dismember bodies, fire its new heavy artillery and use attack Gazelle helicopters.
Habyarimana was assassinated on April 6, 1994, when unknown assailants shot down his Falcon 50 jet, another present from the French taxpayer. The event ushered in possibly the hundred bloodiest days in history. Up to one million Tutsis were slaughtered.
As the body count grew, France welcomed ministers of the genocidal Government to an official reception in Paris. Meanwhile, its military continued to send arms to bolster its Hutu allies in power, regardless of the genocide they were perpetrating.
Since 1994 France has been adept at trying to hide this stain on la gloire. Its ministers, including the current Prime Minister, constantly repeat the “double genocide” myth, which alleged that while Hutu killed Tutsi, the Tutsi also killed Hutu. It is akin to claiming that Holocaust victims were also mass murderers.
So the latest French government attempt to cover its Rwandan shame is no surprise to observers of La Françafrique. The timing behind the sudden release of Judge Jean-Louis Bruguière’s report, which blames Kagame for Habyarimana’s death, is no coincidence. Four senior French military and political figures will shortly give testimony before the international war crimes tribunal in Arusha. They have been called by the defence team of Colonel Théoneste Bagosora, who faces charges of being the mastermind behind the genocide.
There seems to be an unwritten rule among Western leaders however not to question each other’s foreign policies too closely, but we don’t feel it has to remain “politically correct” when faced with the necessary facts, so here we go once more:
Contemporary Rwanda is the legacy of an old state, a precolonial kingdom. The boundaries of contemporary Rwanda are largely, though not uniformly, consistent with the kingdom the Europeans found at the end of the nineteenth century. The Europeans incorporated, and in some instances reinforced, Rwanda 's precolonial institutions into the colonial state, and versions of those institutions persisted into the postcolonial state. Moreover, contemporary Rwanda has only one major national language besides French and Swahili: Kinyarwanda. To be sure, colonialism changed much, including and especially the salience and meaning of ethnic identity. But Rwanda 's institutional history is broadly a story of continuity and integration. Unlike most contemporary African states, Rwanda is not a new, arbitrary, or foreign invention. And, moreover, as we shall see, the precolonial Rwandan state itself was well developed.
Several authors have gone so far as to describe the pre-1994 Rwandan state as "totalitarian For example, Linda Melvern writes that with the exception of communist" Rwanda was probably the most controlled state in the world" (Melvern, A People Betrayed, 2000, p.25; on 'totalitarian" state, see also Christian Scherrer, Genocide and Crisis in Cen. Conflict Roots, Mass Violence, and Regional War, 2002,p. 109).
It seems clear then that there is something distinctive about the Rwandan state outside the context of the genocide. Rwandan and scholarly opinion alike suggest that the Rwandan state was centralized and effective at gaining compliance from the citizenry throughout the country. Rwandan state power in these respects is noteworthy-but especially so in comparison to most other African states.
During the "scramble for Africa," for example Europeans carved up Sub-Saharan Africa into a series of new administrative entities. The Europeans drew sometimes arbitrary boundaries, bisecting ethnic and language groups into different territories, and cobbling together preexisting rivals who had no previous history of cooperation, administrative or otherwise. The results were often new multilingual units whose national borders had little relationship to preexisting political communities. Many observers of African politics consider the colonial origins of African states a fundamental and persistent problem for establishing political legitimacy and hence for creating capable, administratively strong states with national loyalty, depth, and resonance. Rwanda, however, does not fit this mold. (See Pierre Englebert, State Legitimacy and Development in Africa, 2001, pp. 74-75).
For example the boundaries of contemporary Rwanda are largely, though not uniformly, consistent with the kingdom the Europeans found at the end of the nineteenth century. The Europeans incorporated, and in some instances reinforced, Rwanda 's precolonial institutions into the colonial state, and versions of those institutions persisted into the postcolonial state. Moreover, contemporary Rwanda has only one major national language besides French and Swahili: Kinyarwanda. To be sure, colonialism changed much, including and especially the salience and meaning of ethnic identity [as we shall see). But Rwanda 's institutional history is broadly a story of continuity and integration. Unlike most contemporary African states, Rwanda is not a new, arbitrary, or foreign invention. And, moreover, as we shall see, the precolonial Rwandan state itself was well developed.
Germany was Rwanda 's first colonial ruler, and, impressed with the monarchical institutions they found, Germany opted to reinforce, rather than destroy, the precolonial system of rule. For example, a senior German official, writing in 1906, remarked,"political structure of the sultanates offers a favourable opportunity to administer and develop culturally the natives through their traditional rulers." The sultanates in question here are kingdoms of Rwanda and Burundi. The German colonial unit was called " Ruanda-Urundi." Thus, in name the two kingdoms formed a single European colonial entity; in practice, the two were administered independently and in each the monarchies were left intact. (See William Roger Louis, Ruanda-Urundi, 1884-1919, Oxford, 1963, p.129).
Other German colonial authorities characterized Rwanda's governing system similarly. They described Rwanda's inatial authority as "strong, effective and worth reinforcing." Thus, even from the point of early European contact, Rwanda's precolonial state was considered well organized and well established. (See Jan Czekanowski, Carnets de route au coeur de l'Afrique,trans. Lidia Meschy, Switzerland, 2001, II). During the course of Germany 's brief rule over Rwanda (and neighboring Burundi) according to Czekanowski the German physical presence was minimal.
By 1913 Rwanda was host to only five German administrators and forty-one missionaries. (David Newbury and Catharine Newbury, "Bringing the Peasants Back In: Agrarian Themes in the Construction and Corrosion of Statist Historiography in Rwanda," American Historical Review 105, no. 3, 2000, p.845).
After Germany 's defeat in World War I, Belgium assumed control of Rwanda and Burundi as part of a "trust territory." Like the Germans before them, the Belgians initially chose to reinforce Rwanda 's monarchy, which the new colonialists also considered remarkably well developed. Consider, for example, the language of the Belgian minister of colonies shortly after the war:
I have decided that in Ruanda and in Urundi [sic], where there exists an indigenous organization that is highly developed [tortement echafaudee] with an authority powerfully well-established [puissamment assise], relations between the metropole and its territories will be indirect administration. (Minister of Colonies Franck to the Governor General, "Politique indigene. Ad· ministration indirecte," January 6, 1920, Colonial archives at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, dossier Al4370, number VII-B.l.B, 1, Brussels, Belgium).
Later the same year, he wrote:We will practice in Ruanda and Urundi a colonial protectorate policy. The basis of this policy is the maintenance of indigenous institutions .... This is perfectly realizable in these countries where the organization is ancient and remarkable and whose ruling class shows evident political talents ...Our administration will maintain royal authority and reinforce it.(idem,1,8).
Or, as one influential Belgian colonial administrator, Pierre Ryckmans, wrote:
Among all the problems, one finds a major factor for progress: hierarchy; an authority that is orderly and strong enough to attain, with more or less efficacy, all the elements of social order [corps social] .... Since we need chiefs, let's make the most of the authority of those that exist; let us hasten to put them at our service. (Pierre Ryckmans, "Le Probleme politique au Ruanda-Urundi ," Societe BeIge d'etudes et d'expansion 23, no. 49, 1925, 60).
Judging from these documents, it is clear that senior Belgian colonial officials considered Rwanda 's political system unusually well developed with a strong social hierarchy. The Belgians in turn endorsed a policy of continuity: they opted to develop a colonial administration on the basis of Rwanda 's preexisting institutions. For a similar statement, see the Rapport sur l'administration belge, which claimed that "The first concern for the Belgian administration was to recognize the existing chiefs, indispensable intermediaries with the mass of people, so that their intervention is efficient." (Ministere des Colonies, Rapport sur l'administration beIge du Ruanda-Urundi pendant l'annee 1925, 62).
In many areas of Rwanda, the king had three representatives, but in the mid 1920s the Belgians abolished this trinitarian system in favor of a single "chief" to govern" chiefdoms." In addition, the Belgians established "subchiefs" who presided over "subchiefdoms." The new authorities were sent for Western education, governing tasks were delineated, "chiefdom" boundaries were demarcated, and the authorities were paid. Scholarship on this period of Belgian rule emphasizes that the changes increased the state's arbitrary power. In precolonial times, Rwandans could play authorities off one other and thus deflect outright coercion. But the changes under the Belgians streamlined state power. They also reduced the king's authority and elevated Rwanda 's aristocracy-exclusively Tutsi chiefs and sub chiefs under colonialism. (This is the central thesis in Jean Rumiya, Le Rwanda sous le regime du mandat belge 1916-1931, Paris, 1992).
As one keen analyst of the period, Catharine Newbury, concluded, "The impact of colonial statebuilding in Rwanda was thus to elaborate and intensify a system of political oppression." (Newbury, The Cohesion of Oppression: Clientship and Ethnicity in Rwanda, 1860-1960, Columbia University Press, 1988, 2007).
In retrospect, then, the colonial period in Rwanda reformed and reinforced an already well-developed precolonial political system. Colonialism did not create an entirely new administration, nor did it result in a major exogenous disruption. Rather, the main process was a gradual cooption, adaptation, and transformation of preexisting institutions. The core territory was not fabricated but rather consolidated. The net effect is that a preexisting precolonial administration was extended and, in some dimensions, intensified. This gave Rwanda 's governing institutions an unusual depth and power, one that would continue into the postcolonial era.
Rwanda's precolonial state not only had a well-developed and hierarchical system of governing, but there also were a number of institutions of labor mobilization. Like Rwanda 's administrative structure, these institutions were ultimately incorporated into the colonial system, albeit in altered form. The precolonial forms of labor mobilization and their colonial counterparts are precursors of similar institutions in post-genocide Rwanda, such as umuganda. The long history of forced labor mobilization in Rwanda also provides further insight into why coercive mass mobilization was so effective during the genocide .Precolonial Rwanda had a number of informal institutions of labor mobilization. One concerned obligatory military service. (Ministere des Colonies, Rapport sur l'administration beIge du Ruanda-Urundi pendant l'annee 1925, 59; Ministere des Colonies, Rapport sur l'administration beIge du RuandaUrundi pendant l'annee 1926, 51).
Another concerned a mandatory labor practice called uburetwa, which usually required that each household provide two days of labor (for every five days) to local chiefs. Typical tasks included keeping watch over a chief's house at night, fetching water for a local authority, and clearing land for cultivation. Poor performance could be severely punished. (See Alexis Kagame, Les milices du rwanda precoloniall,Brussels: Academie royale des sciences d'outre-mer; Jacques J. Maquet, The Premise of Inequality in Rwanda: A Study of Political Relations in a Central African Kingdom, Oxford, 1961, 102-3, 109).
As the Belgians reduced the days of labor that chiefs could demand of the peasantry, the colonial rulers in turn adopted the idea of free labor for their own statebuilding aims. Thus under colonialism, these obligations did not disappear but rather were integrated into the new state and intensified. Belgian authorities recognized that labor mobilization was a sign of power and central to the practice of authority in "traditional" Rwanda. Belgian officers ultimately tried to curb the extent of the labor requisitions. In 1924, they reduced the labor requirement to two days out of seven, and in 1927, they legislated one day out of seven-though the practice changed from a requirement asked of every household to one asked of every person. That said, the changes masked a colonial cooptation of the institution. As the Belgians reduced the days of labor that chiefs could demand of the peasantry, the colonial rulers in turn adopted the idea of free labor for their own statebuilding aims. The principle of labor requisition remained, but its immediate beneficiaries and practices shifted. The principle of labor requisition remained, but its immediate beneficiaries and practices shifted. As one colonial official explained late 1922:
The native must give his chief two days of work each week; the chiefs use this right to furnish corvces to the king .... It is in light of this custom that the means of communication [roads] can be developed without too much expense. We need only make the king and chiefs understand the necessity and utility of the roads so that each among them, within their means, will gratuitously provide labor. The native is moreover habituated to submit to this custom of two days per week and would not consider complaining about something natural. (Lieutenant Defarve, "Elements essentials de l'organisation politique & sociale du Ruanda, au point de vue de notre politique indigene & du developpement economique du territoire," Ministry of Foreign Affairs, AI (4370), B.5.A, Brussels, Belgium, 4; Ministere des Colonies, Rapport sur l'administration belge du Ruanda-Urundi pendant l'anne 1922, 22).
Population density and Rwanda 's topography also matters. The country is primarily composed of rolling hills, as reflected in Rwanda 's nickname: "the land of a thousand hills." Rwanda 's hills increase the visibility of the population. In contrast to flat, expansive landscapes, hilly territory means that inhabitants are often exposed. These features of Rwanda 's human and physical geography increase the capacity for surveillance, and they limit the opportunities for exit and escape. Rwanda 's citizenry is eminently findable. As a result, when ordered to perform a duty, especially when that order is national and when there are powerful actors who seek to enforce the order, Rwandans almost inevitably face a choice between compliance and punishment because they have few opportunities to escape.
Therein lies a historical jump. The historical period where we next make a jump is the early 1990s, after the Rwandan "social revolution," in which the monarchy was overthrown and Tutsi political elites were ousted from power. Thus, the independence generation of Rwandan leaders sought to distance themselves from the authorities that preceded them. Yet the institutions did not change dramatically. Many observers of the transition period from colonialism to the revolution argue that Rwanda 's new leaders often replicated the political behavior of their predecessors. Just as European authorities based their rule on the monarchy's legitimacy and governing patterns, so too Rwanda 's independence leaders based their authority on the preexisting political culture.
A leading scholar of the transition period, Rene Lemarchand, refers to Rwanda 's first republic as a "mwamiship" (or kingship-the "mwami" was the Rwandan king). Lemarchand argues that the president's legitimacy was "inextricably bound up" in the popular mind with the legitimacy of the monarchy, and he notes a similar pattern with prefects, burgomasters, and other local authorities. (Rene Lemarchand, Rwanda and Burundi, London, 1970,272).
Other observers of postcolonial Rwanda make similar points. Danielle de Lame, for example, argues that "in popular perception, the status of the burgomaster equates to that of a chief in the colonial period." (Danielle de Lame, Une Colline entre mille ou Ie calme avant la tempme, Belgium: Musee royal de l'Afrique centrale, 1996, 75; Jean-Claude Willame, Aux sources de l'hecatombe rwandaise Brussels, 1995,65-66).
After studying two post-independence government reports, scholar Filip Reyntjens observed that the inquiries "provide numerous examples of burgomasters, parfets, local and regional party officials arrogating to themselves all the attributes, attitudes and values associated with the functions of chief and subchief under the ancien regime. " (Reyntjens, "Chiefs and Burgomasters in Rwanda: The Unfinished Quest for a Bureaucracy, Journal of Legal Pluralism and Unofficial Law 25-26 (1987), 71-97).
As with other institutions of mobilization, the postcolonial practice resembled precolonial practices. Such continuity is rooted in Rwandan political culture-in what political authorities believe is a legitimate and routine demand on the citizenry, and vice versa: what citizens believe is a legitimate and routine demand from those with power.
Combined with this we are now in a position also to understand and evaluate the widespread perpetrator claims that participation in the genocide was both authorized and obligatory. there are four principal sources of state power in Rwanda and mass mobilization. These are: (1) an unusually high degree of institutional and national continuity during the last 100 years; (2) an uncommonly well developed precolonial state with specific institutions of mandatory collective labor mobilization, which in turn persisted in the colonial and postcolonial state; (3) dense human settlement; and (4) visible territory, which, when combined with dense settlement, increases the capacity for surveillance and limits the capacity for exit and evasion; such human and physical geography in turn enhances state power and the credible threat of coercion. Finally, during the genocide, war intensified the perceived costs of disobedience, and noncompliers were in fact punished and occasionally killed. Indeed, leading Hutu opposition figures were among the first killed during the genocide. Taken together, these factors combine to make the state effective in Rwanda and effective in particular at civilian mobilization. Even amid a war and a progressive loss of territory, the Rwandan state continued to be effective at civilian mobilization in areas not yet lost to the rebels.
Recall how some perpetrators described how authorities and bands of men would travel from house to house, demanding that an adult male from each house join the attacks. Recall how the most active perpetrators readily acknowledged that they expected and demanded-under penalty of death, they said-Hutu men to participate. In fact, intra-Hutu pressure was the most common reason that respondents gave for their participation. Attacking Tutsis was like a "law"-and disobedience, claimed both those pressuring and those being pressured, would have carried a heavy price. Testimony showe this, for example:
After the crash of the president's plane, the soldiers stationed at military positions spread through the countryside. They said, "The president has been killed." They told us the Tutsis killed him and that is how the genocide started .... They said, "Every person had to defend himself with whatever weapon he could find because the enemy is the Tutsi." What did you do! Afterwards if you found a tree branch, you took it [as a weapon], and if you found a Tutsi, you killed him. Did you form a group! Yes, I went with them. Where did you go! To the cellules where Tutsis lived .... It was a law. How can you hit someone if it is an obligation! If it were me, I would try to hide. Where could you hide in war? But maybe shove with the stick but not actually hit! That was not possible. Why not! If someone orders you with a gun, how can you fight with someone who has a gun? Why not hide after the first day! Where would you hide? Maybe your house! They would find you there. (Ruhengeri)
In the excerpt, this perpetrator from Ruhengeri Prefecture shows how soldiers traveled civilian areas and instructed Hutus to kill Tutsis. The orders were like a "law," said the respondent. The testimony also is also noteworthy for the calculation of individual compliance it demonstrates. There was nowhere to hide, the perpetrator explained, and refusal to comply would result in punishment from an authority with a gun. A similar dynamic is found in the following excerpt:
member of the cellule committee came to see me, at my place, while I was
working in the banana grove. He obligated me, with the others, to go to the
river, and he asked us to throw people in the water. I threw one in, and that
is what I explained to the court. How did the official obligate you~ He was
part of an attack; he had a gun; he found us working; he asked why we had not
left to look for the Tutsis. The attack had two [Tutsi] children with them.
What did he say precisely "Why did you not go to kill the Tutsis?"
... He had been a policeman, and he controlled a part of the cellule. He was in
charge of security. Why did the attack come looking for you~ I lived near the
road. Did they look for you or just see you The attack looked for me because
they knew I had a Tutsi wife. They asked me where my wife was because I was at
the time alone with my children. I said she was dead, even though I had hidden
her. They asked me who killed her. I explained there was an attack from
Ruhengeri that took her, and that I did not know where she had been killed.
What happened They took me. We went to the river. When we arrived at the river,
they ordered us to throw these children in the river. We threw them in the
river, and we went back. Why did you do it It was an order. That's what I
explained to the tribunal. It was the law. Why not refuse~ Anyone who refused
paid 3000 FRW [about $22] or a jerrican of beer. I couldn't find that. Still,
why not refuse~ I could be killed myself. You can't refuse someone who has a
Here again, we see how violent groups traveled the countryside and pressured civilians to join the killing. Participation was an "obligation" -one coercively enforced-that Hutu men were expected to meet.
One consistent theme in many testimonies is that the costs of disobedience intensified in wartime. Judging from the two excerpts just quoted, the war climate seems to have added urgency to the orders. The context of war also increased the risks of refusal. In war, noncompliers could be killed. Thus, as the national authorities lost ground to the RPF in the war, their demands on the Hutu civilian population to join the war effort became that much more pressing.
Why did he initially join attacks? Because, he said, the Tutsis were enemies. Why did he kill? Because, he said, killing was "the law." Why not refuse? Because, he said, of the credible threat of punishment: he would have lost his land, and disobedience carried the risk of being branded an "accomplice," which was equivalent to being called an "enemy" and being targeted for attack. In short, the excerpt shows how war and law worked together. This was a period of acute crisis-after the president's assassination, the resumption of war, and the rapid spread of violence the perceptions of uncertainty and threat led to using violence to assert power and dominance, as I have argued. But there was also a clear sense that the authorities had decreed a policy of killing with which men were expected to comply. War and state power worked simultaneously to justify and authorize killing.
Rwandans said that they participated in the genocide because of in-group
coercion. Perpetrators may be inclined to diminish their responsibility by
claiming that they were following orders under duress-even if the respondents
had already been convicted. But the stories of genocidal participation as
"law," as "obligation," and as the less costly alternative
to being punished for disobedience are remarkably consistent across
respondents. Those who mobilized others also readily acknowledge that they
required collective civilian participation and that they considered such
mobilization to be a normal course of action.
Sometimes those who mobilized others were state officials, sometimes they were not but said that they were acting on state officials' behalf, and sometimes they had usurped power but then acted as if they were the legitimate authority. In each case, however, civilian mobilization depended on common expectations about how power and authority work in Rwanda, about the credible threat of coercion, and about the perceived legitimacy of the practice of mass civilian participation in state projects.
Rwanda has consistently accused Agathe Habyarimana, the wife of the late president, and the founder of the “Akazu”, a small but powerful circle of Hutu family members and relatives who plotted to exterminate the Tutsi, of being responsible for Habyarimana’s death. Rwanda has always wanted the former first lady to face justice over the genocide. However, she is protected by the French authorities and lives somewhere in France. “They [France] are harbouring Agathe Habyarimana whose evidence is being used by the judge and yet she is a killer,” Kagame has said since the verdict was handed down, adding that other former Habyarimana government officials have also sought refuge in France.
A recent statement issued by the Rwandan ministry of justice to the Secretary General of Interpol, Ronald Noble, states that “the French military manned roadblocks, checked ethnic identity cards to separate those to be killed and fought alongside the former government forces”. The letter wonders how the French judge could use “gossip and rumours obtained from genocide suspects; common criminals and Rwandan political dissidents as a basis to issue indictments against government officials of a sovereign state”.
In the meantime, in Rwanda, the French judge’s actions appear to be uniting Rwandans against the French government, as recent demonstrations have shown. More than 25 000 Rwandans from all walks of life marched through the streets of Kigali, the capital city, with placards that condemned the French and their involvement in Rwanda before and during the 1994 genocide. As one observer in Kigali has said, “The demonstration has been a combination of Hutus and Tutsis and not just the genocide survivors.”
The majority of Rwandans feel that the international community, and particularly the Western world, turned a blind eye to the horrific killings of 1994 which targeted Tutsis and politically moderate Hutus. It has been speculated in Kigali that the Rwandan government’s recent establishment of a commission of inquiry into the role of France in the 1994 genocide could have infuriated the French. The resulting anger and panic among the French political class and leadership could have resulted in an indirect retaliation from the judge.
After UNO soldiers were forced to stand back during the 1994 Genocide (see ‘Hotel Rwanda’ the movie for the former) and Boutros-Ghali estimated that another three months would be needed to get UNAMIR II under way—“UN resolution 929” gave France backing for a “peace mission” to “stop” the “Genocide against Tutsi’s”, which it was agreed should last a maximum of two months.
Next, Vincent Kayigema, who was eight years old at the time, testified that French peace soldiers had assembled around 200 Tutsis who had come out of hiding on a hill; facing them were crowds of armed militia. When the French then turned their armored vehicles round and left, the anti-Tutsi militia stepped in 'and killed more than half of the Tutsis who were there'. In the intervening three days before the French returned about 1000 Tutsis were slaughtered. Another survivor by the name of Jean-Damescene put the figure at 2000. Many Tutsis were too exhausted to run and hide again. Emotionally, too, many gave up. (Both these testimonies are quoted from a documentary on the subject by Georges Kapler, Rwanda, Un Cri d'un Silence Inoui, 2004).
Colonel Jean-Rene Duval - known as 'Diego' reported that he spent three days making numerous calls on his satellite phone to Paris to alert higher command about the imminent danger to the hundreds of Tutsis they had seen on the hills. In fact, on 26 June, the day before Diego and his men discovered the survivors, three journalists - Hugeux, Kiley and Bonner - had informed Gillier that massacres were taking place. For the next three days Gillier, like Diego, made repeated calls to his superiors to ask for action to be taken to assist those at risk, but failed to receive clearance. After waiting around for orders to move that never came Diego, set off back into the hills with his men. This time Colonel Jacques Rosier, head of the special force landed his helicopter on the road in front of Diego's troop convoy. Signalling to Diego to come over, the two officers had then been involved in a 30-minute discussion before Diego ordered his troops to turn round and return to their base. Rosier, who had been in Rwanda from June to November 1992 as head of the pro-FAR military cooperation operations in Kigali, had told him that they could go no further. (Human Rights Watch 1999, p.680). Rosier and other commanders in Paris were refusing to countenance a rescue mission even though the French had a base full of special service commandos, the equivalent of the British SAS, ready and willing to return to help the survivors and stop the genocide. At Bisesero this attitude allowed the genocide to continue and the genocidaires to stroll around unhindered.
On 29 June Defence Minister Francois Leotard visited the area on a public relations mission to ensure that the media gave full coverage to the 'humanitarian' operation and that Mitterrand's government received all the plaudits it deserved for its Rwandan intervention. Leotard's officers had fully briefed him on the likelihood of the killing nearby continuing, for the journalists with Operation Turquoise had asked for action to be taken to help those they had seen being massacred on the hills. According to Raymond Bonner of the New York Times, 'Leotard rejected any operation to evacuate or protect the embattled Tutsi at Bisesero saying that the French "did not have enough troops to protect everyone”. (Ibid).
Today, inside a corrugated metal shed on a Bisesero hillside, only metres away from where the French convoy arrived, are several long wide tables. Layed out on each table are line upon line of skulls, perhaps 2000 in all, of all sizes, from those of tiny babies to elderly adults. At the far end, 15 metres away, are more piles of bones. The light filters through holes in the metal ceiling and rudimentary walls. Each skull, each head, each person, all with a tale of calamitous suffering, all with a story of anguish and pain they can no longer shout out. The empty eye sockets look blindly out into the dark. Ten years after the genocide bodies are still uncovered each week on the mountain and the remains brought here to this grim carnal house.
A 1998 inquiry into France 's role in Rwanda devoted a meagre 20 lines to the incident at Bisesero. It put the lack of action firmly down to Gillier, the real reason for the failure to intervene was that Diego and Gillier were given direct orders not to mount a rescue mission.
Thierry Prungnaud, a sergeant with the elite GIGN (Gendarmerie Intervention Group) later described how, at the five-minute briefing session the troops were given when they initially arrived at Turquoise headquarters in Goma, they were specifically told that instead of a genocide against Tutsis, the opposite would be the case and the former were killing Hutus. This deliberate disinformation about the genocide clearly came from high up in the French military from those who still wanted to 'beat the RPF'. It took most of the soldiers several days, indeed weeks, to recognize that this was a deliberate falsification. With Hutu crowds and militia cheering their arrival in the country, and orders to work alongside the Hutu police, prefects and bourgmestres, most of whom were genocidaire, it was not surprising that ordinary soldiers with no previous experience of Rwanda, assumed that they were the 'good guys'. Only after events like Bisesero, the truth of who was killing who became all too evident, leaving men like Prungnaud to feel that they had been deliberately manipulated by both the Hutu killers who had warmly welcomed them and fed them lies and by their own higher command. He complained, 'We thought the Hutu were the good guys and the victims.' Another soldier spoke with disgust of how he had had enough of 'being cheered by murderers'.( Human Rights Watch 1999: 681).
Also others, were soon able to dismiss the disinformation they had received about who was killing who and got on with the practicalities of saving life and feeding refugees. Captain Gillier, for example, is said to have urged a media cameraman to film the site where hundreds of corpses were found when the French returned to Bisesero on the grounds that 'people must see this'. He described the killing as 'intolerable'. (Human Rights Watch 1999: 681).
Near Cyangugu, in the south then, a journalist described how, “bodies of Tutsis, no more than two hours dead, lie among the banana groves. The houses they once lived in stand half empty, looted even while the life drained from their owners' veins. French soldiers from the Special Forces, the first of 2500 troops ... arrive at the scene. There is little the reconnaissance team can do. They are two hours too late. Nearby, Hutu militiamen armed with modern automatic rifles and Stone Age clubs, the sort of men, if not the very ones, who have carried out massacres like this, stand about smiling and waving at the French soldiers. Many wear bandanas in the red, white and blue of France. A Rwandan army jeep races through the countryside Similarly decked out.” ('The French in Rwanda ', The Economist, vol. 332, no. 7870, 2July 1994, p. 39)
Throughout Rwanda the genocide and chaos continued into July. The Rwandan army and militia sustained their killing spree and the tactic of pushing the Hutu population into retreat with them. On 1 July Jean-Bernard Merimee, the French representative at the UN, sent a letter from Mitterrand's government to Boutros-Ghali informing the secretary-general of the need to establish a Hutu, SHZ in southwest Rwanda. It cited earlier Resolutions 925 and 929 as authorizing such a zone. (5/1994/798, document 73, United Nations Blue Book Book Series, p. 310).
This was despite Prime Minister Balladur telling the world that France would on no account become a 'force d'imposition'. Yet, the area of the proposed zone, was clearly one of demarcation, cutting Rwanda in two. However, the Security Council showed no will to readdress a debate on the UN sanctioned French ‘peace mission’. While internationally the new SHZ was perceived as a way the remnants of the Hutu army, militia and government could escape RPF retribution, no country wanted to get politically involved in the UN Security Council by contesting its setup. Instead, it was silently permitted. Bastille Day, 14 July, provided President Mitterrand with an excellent opportunity to justify the French action in Rwanda. In a televized interview on Channel France 2, he claimed that France could not intervene in Rwanda during the genocide because this was the job of the United Nations.
Georges, a Rwandan army recruit and Interahamwe trainer, was certain about what he witnessed. They asked us to ensure we found all the Tutsis still in the region so that we could exterminate them. They promised that our zone would, thanks to them, become a safe Zone. It was Frenchmen who spoke in those terms. Then they told us it was too late, Kagame’s RPF had forces they hadn't suspected; we'd waited too long before appealing to them; it was too late. They were telling us all this when things were taking a turn for the worse for them and they'd started exchanging fire with the RPF at Gikongoro. They told us there was no other way round it; we all had to escape to the Congo without exception. Anyone who tried to stay behind would be considered to be a cockroach himself. It was the French themselves who said all this. They asked us to flee wherever they went; in the small trading centres they urged people to flee from the RPF. Like in those small centres, they asked everyone they encountered, Tutsi or Hutu?' If you answered 'Hutu', they gave you the thumbs-up, saying 'Yes!' But to recognize a Hutu, they relied on this sign: the fact he was carrying a cudgel. Some of the cudgels had studs in them - we called them 'no possible ransom to redeem an enemy's life'; this had really impressed the French. They told us that, on this point, they recognized that the Rwandans had a sense of creativity and that they would never have imagined such a weapon for killing with. We'd killed with those things several times, right in front of their eyes, and they did nothing to prevent us. Frankly, if they'd come to save people, they'd never have let us continue killing the Tutsis in front of them, let alone given us some of the equipment that we were using. When the French arrived, the surviving Tutsis had every chance to get away, first and foremost since the RPF was coming up fast. And what did the French do? They advanced so as to hold up the RPF troops and prevent them coming to rescue the Tutsis who were still in Cyangugu. This is what aggravated things in that prefecture. Yes, once the RPF were held up by the French, we found the time and the patience to flush out the ones who'd managed to hide. We'd already been doing that but we were frightened of encountering an RPF soldier. We knew they were going to arrive from one day to the next and we'd seen some of our soldiers running away. You told yourself that if you risked nosing around in the bushes, you also risked finding an Inkotanyi who wouldn't forgive you. But once the French had told us 'don't worry, we're on our way!' we felt secure and we started to go deeper into the bushes to flush people out - we were full of confidence and determination since we had the blessing of the French and knew we were even going to reconquer the whole country. Not only did they advise us, but they even ensured we had enough food. And they took the initiative and came to us. Sometimes they would meet the prefect, Manichimwe, who sent a soldier called Bikumanywa, a sergeant major in charge of the stocks at the Karambo camp. He would come and give us the instructions that he'd received from the French. 'You can go wherever you want, without fear - we've got the French supporting us, and they certainly don't want to see the country in the hands of the cockroaches.' As for the roadblocks, there too the French weren't exactly complimentary about our work. They told us the barriers would give us away and they advised us to remove them and inspect everything by the roadside. We took away the tree trunks that were blocking the road and we kept an eye on everything, at least along the road. They explained to us that when the international community keeps things under surveillance, if the satellites see barriers, it creates a really bad impression; so they advised us to keep watch on the road without erecting barriers. No, there was never the slightest problem or misunderstanding in our relations with the French. They distributed weapons even outside Nyarushishi [a refugee camp just inside the Rwandan Zaire border] at the customs post for instance, when they entered the country. (Georges Rutaganda was committed for trial at the ICTR at Arusha on charges of genocide and crimes against humanity. He was found guilty of the charges on 6 January 1999 and sentenced to life imprisonment.)
With the fall of Kigali, the French zone became a magnet for both the innocent and guilty. UNO commander R. Dallaire commented, "as predicted, the creation of the French zone lured masses of displaced people out of central Rwanda ... the trap the French had rushed into would inevitably begin to close. Either they would pull out as soon as they could - even before the sixty day limit of their mandate - or they would be cast in the role of protectors of the perpetrators of one of the most severe genocides in history." (Dallaire, Shake hands with the devil, 2003, p. 455).
The need to please the world's press and uphold the French zone as a great success meant statements affirming the capture of genocidaires and the disarming of the militia. Politically, however, such a strategy could badly damage French influence over other francophone African dictators. The reality was that France had dealt with this 'band of killers' for several years. To arrest them now was both to fly in the face of friendship and loyalty and to admit publicly that it had supported men it now knew were mass murderers. UNO commander Dallaire received a memo from Lafourcade confirming that the French commander and his government 'had no mandate to disarm the killers, though he would prevent them from taking action in the humanitarian zone. His memo stated that, “We are not going to disarm the militias safe zone unless they posed a threat to the people his force was protecting. As a result the extremists would be able to move about freely in the zone, safe from any interference from the French.” (Dallaire 2003: 457).
Dallaire suspected the genocidaires were planning to re-form over the border in Mobutu's Zaire, and were even now making bargains with local power dealers in Goma and the surrounding area 'to retain their weapons and political structure, thus setting up to come back into Rwanda in force within a couple of years and start the war all over again'. Bruno Delaye, Mitterrand's African adviser, commented that the French mandate “does not authorize us to arrest them on our own authority. Such a task could undermine our neutrality, the best guarantee of our effectiveness.” (Human Rights Watch 1999: 686).
However France had never been neutral in Rwanda and even now was resettling Akazu death squad members in Paris. France also had never asked for the mandate to be modified. No mandate was ever set in stone - witness the setting up of the safe zone. In fact, the real mandate was the Genocide Convention, which France had signed up to in Geneva on 12 August 1949. Under Article IV, 'persons committing genocide ... shall be punished, whether they are constitutionally responsible rulers, public officials or private individuals.' Journalist Sam Kiley however reported that on 2 July the French military evacuated Theoneste Bagosora, the Rwanda genocide's chief architect, to safety from Butare along with other 'persons’. His information came from a high-ranking French officer who knew Bagosora well. (Human Rights Watch 1999: 688).
Former Interahamwe dead squad member Janvier, was blunt in his appraisal of what he witnessed. ”The French came to finish off what had been prearranged. They gave no assistance to the victims. If they claim that they did, let them show us a single killer who they arrested. They killed maybe between one and five Interahamwe. If this was the objective, why didn't they kill Munyakazi for instance, since he was the commander of an entire battalion of killers? This simple question requires an answer from them, so ask them on our behalf. Why didn't they arrest Yusufu our [leading Interahamwe] commander.” (Assemblee nationale 1998: I, 328).
The French safe zone had, by mid-July, become a stepping off point for terrified Hutu peasants aiming to cross into Zaire, where refugee camps were already being set up. For the interim government the policy was to get to Zaire to re-form and rearm. French troops allowed, and even actively assisted, the retreating Rwandan army and militia to cross into Zaire with their equipment and weaponry intact. Human Rights Watch reported one foreign soldier who testified to seeing Turquoise military refuelling Rwandan army trucks before they left for Zaire with looted goods. (Human Rights Watch 1999: 688).
As it was, the killer troops walked about openly in the safe zone with their weapons, many the gift of previous French assistance. Rwandan army soldiers were receiving whole cargoes of weapons in the camps, organizing military exercises and recruiting new troops to prepare to return for a final victory in Rwanda. Not surprisingly, the new Government leader Paul Kagame was unhappy about genocidaires re-forming a few kilometres the other side of the Rwandan border. Kagame expressed disquiet to Lafourcade about this, while shelling Goma airport on 17 July from positions inside Rwanda, with explosives hitting the runway while planes loaded with equipment came and went. The day after taking control of the Hutu stronghold of Gisenyi, Kagame called his own ceasefire. Thus, on 19 July a new broad-based government was sworn into office in Kigali with Hutu moderate Pasteur Bizimungu as president and Paul Kagame as vice-president.
According to Diogene's a member of the previous Governement testified that, “French soldiers in the military camps in Zaire still acting on behalf of the previous government. French soldiers were supporting Bagosora and his henchmen.” At Murambi, just outside Gikongoro, thousands of Tutsis were slaughtered after having been transported to an unfinished technical school by the militia. At a memorial rally in April 1997, a survivor spoke of how French troops had helped to bury the bodies when they arrived.Major Jean-Yves St-Denis, who flew in to help assess the situation in Goma for the UN, reported seeing 'a pile of bodies at least twenty feet high' and 'hundreds of bodies ... littering the roads. All of them ... had succumbed to cholera. For a while we followed a dumper truck filled with bodies that had been picked up by French soldiers .... I remember the soldiers' eyes; they were lifeless and full of sadness.” (Dallaire 2003: 482).
Dallaire commented, 'Lafourcade had come into the country heavy with combat assets and light on the tools of humanitarian relief. (Dallaire 2003: 483).
This is further evidenced by the number of people the French “peace operation” saved, variously put at between 10,000 and 17,000. (Gerard Prunier The Rwandan crisis: history of a genocide, 1999: 303). Dallaire's poorly-armed UNAMIR force of fewer than 500 men, by contrast, probably saved twice that many. Fittingly, the French ‘peace operation’ ended as it had begun. As the last of its troops left Cyangugu to cross to Bukavu in Zaire, Hutu crowds cheered them on their way. (See also, L’horreur qui nous prend au visage, Karthala, 2005).
On Nov. 22, 2006 then, Rwandan Foreign Minister Charles Murigande accused France of trying to cover up its complicity.
Whatever the outcome of this recent development, we can conclude that to brand the French 'humanitarian operation' a success, politicians in Paris needed to justify the operation and parade it in the correct humanitarian robes. Thus, interested journalists were encouraged to look instead at the human misery now lined up before the cameras in the camps at Goma and Bukavu. Foreign Minister Juppe told an interviewer five weeks after the end of the genocide that in Rwanda, 'one could not say that good was on one side and evil on the other’ (the killing of a million people).
Within days of its creation in Kigali, the USA and Britain both officially recognized the broad-based (still current) RPF regime and sent ambassadors to the Rwandan capital, while former colonial master Belgium also established immediate diplomatic ties. Mitterrand instead showed his antipathy. For example, French representatives stormed out of conferences when the president of the new regime in Kigali stood up; France denied aid to Rwanda, blocked EU help to the country and perpetuated the 'double genocide' myth to conceal the responsibility of its FAR allies. It also continued to give military support to the re-forming militia and FAR in the refugee camps outside Rwanda, and put pressure on the new ICTR in Arusha to restrict its mandate to 1994 while deterring it from investigating any French involvement in the genocide. It also includes the fact that, Anazu head Agathe Habyarimana can continue to live in Paris and to date, openly goes to conferences there.
What can be said with certainty is that in spite of French initial assistance to the Government, the genocide started because Hutu hardliners in control of the state decided to foment violence against Tutsis. After the president's assassination, these hardliners killed key opposition politicians and installed a new government. They attacked international peacekeepers, prompting international withdrawal from Rwanda, and mobilized their loyal institutions, including elite military units, paramilitary forces, political party networks, and broadcast media. The result was that they established dominance in the areas not yet lost to the rebels and here French elements wanted to support their former allies.
A lesson for what is currently happening in Darfur in the end, is that if international actors have peacekeepers in place to safeguard a peace agreement and above described dynamics take hold, international actors should develop contingency plans (and troop strength) for if and when events take a violent turn. The question in the latter case, is not whether the political will for the use of force exists or, more specifically, why it often does not. Rather, the question here is, if a decision had been made to intervene, would the intervention have been successful? My arguments and evidence suggest that the answer to that question is yes-provided that international action were swift and decisive.
Why would an intervention have been effective? First, an intervention would have strengthened the hand of moderates who sought to prevent mass violence. My findings show that among Hutu elites at the national and local levels, there was a struggle for dominance.
Ultimately, the Hutu hardliners won those struggles and succeeded in marginalizing and overcoming the moderates. The hardliners succeeded because they controlled a balance of power in the country, because they acted first to assassinate the key Hutu politicians, and because the gathering intensity of the war undermined moderates. An international intervention would have helped to tip the balance in the other direction. Instead, when they confronted the hardliners, the moderates had no real external support or means to fight. International backing would have changed that dynamic.
A strong international intervention would have short-circuited some of the dynamics driving the violence. Perpetrators premised the rationale for genocide on security. The perpetrators argued, perversely, that killing Tutsi civilians was self-defense and a way to combat the "enemy." That rationale succeeded only in a period of emergency, confusion, and war. A strong international action would have calmed the situation, thereby allaying the fears and anxieties that were driving the perceptions of insecurity. Decisive action would have thus undermined the hardliners' claims of the necessity of using extreme violence as a means of self-protection. Instead, again, the opposite happened: the international withdrawal of most peacekeepers and nationals only added to the vortex of confusion and crisis.
For example Giti was the one commune in Rwanda at the time, under government control where genocidal violence did not occur. My research shows that once the RPF entered the area, the dynamics that elsewhere in the country led to genocidal violence stopped. The implication is that had the international community signaled a credible commitment to stabilize Rwanda, genocidal violence would probably have been limited. Undoubtedly, there would have been some violence. Men would have revenged Habyarimana's death by killing Tutsis. But had a stabilizing force asserted control, the violence probably would have been contained.
The absence of large-scale anti-Tutsi violence in Rwanda since the genocide points to the same conclusion. After the RPF won the war and asserted control over Rwanda, there were only isolated attacks against Tutsis (though the RPF has allegedly killed Hutu civilians in Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo). Without the dynamics of acute insecurity and without social pressure to commit violence against Tutsis, Hutu civilians show no inclination to attack Tutsi civilians.
Many Hutu men participated in genocide because they feared the negative consequences of open defiance. My prediction is that had Hutus been ordered not to commit violence and had there been force to back up the call for moderation, most Hutu men would have complied with the orders for peace.
An effective international response would have required a well-prepared and sizeable fighting force, solid intelligence, and quick decision-making. Once the violence began, it spiked. There was a window in which to stop the killing, but that window was small. However, none of these elements-training, adequate personnel and equipment, intelligence, or quick decision-making existed in 1994, but it does today (Dec.2006). The international peacekeepers deployed to Rwanda were not well prepared. Their problems ranged from military coordination to basic logistics, such as feeding troops. The force commander, Dallaire, had very limited knowledge of Rwanda before arriving. UN intelligence-gathering was thin, and key decisions were made thousands of miles away in New York , at UN headquarters.(Romeo Dallaire with Brent Beardsley, Shake Hands with the Devil: The Failure of Humanity in Rwanda , 2003; Luc Marchal, Rwanda : La descente aux enfers: Temoignage d'un peacekeeper Decembre 1993-Avril 1994, Brussels, 2001).
The lesson here is that if peacekeepers are deployed to a country as is now the case with Darfur , they must be prepared logistically and politically to weather a serious crisis. Otherwise, the international community's missteps-and panic, in this case-may unwittingly feed the very dynamics peacekeepers are there to prevent. Whether serious, committed, and well-funded international peacekeeping in Africa will ever be a political reality is an open question and not one I seek to answer here. Whether there could have been the political will for decisive action in Rwanda in 1994-only months after the Somalia debacle-is also an issue we do not address.
However, if the common wisdom is that ethnic hatred and divisions are the main reasons why genocide happened, a logical conflict resolution strategy is to build interethnic ties. In fact, many nongovernmental organizations who have worked in Rwanda since the genocide have based programs on the premise. Similarly, some argue that inter communal participation in civil society salves violence. (See also Ashutosh Varshney, Ethnic Conflict and Civic Life: Hindus and Muslims in India, 2nd ed., 2002).
These strategies however, probably would not work for cases of extreme violence. Hutus and Tutsis cooperated in Rwanda before the genocide. They shared food and drink regularly. They intermarried. They knew each other intimately. But in particular circumstances, preexisting interethnic ties were not enough to prevent violence. During an intense war and under pressure from other Hutus and the state, many Rwandans chose to kill people they knew and with whom they had previously cooperated. The point is not to discourage projects that seek reconciliation and building inter-communal trust. These are worthwhile goals. But no one should entertain the notion that such ties will stop future violence under particular conditions.
The RPF was born a rebel movement, and tactical thinking dominates the leadership. The RPF emphasizes security, which in practice means a strong troop presence countrywide. The former rebels also spearheaded major military interventions in neighboring Democratic Republic of Congo in the name of security. Inside Rwanda , the RPF is allergic to political dissent. Free political expression remains severely limited; the government has frequently shut down the critical press as well as independent civil society organizations, especially those advocating human rights. National presidential and parliamentary elections were held in 2003, but the RPF banned the most credible opposition party from contesting and proceeded to win more than 95 percent of the vote.
Rwanda’s post-genocide regime also has sought to remove references to ethnicity from public discourse. Rwanda is now supposedly a land of Rwandans! not one of Hutus, Tutsis, and Twas. Where authorities are right to concern themselves with stability and security, if they are doing so for the wrong reasons, their actions may ultimately backfire. In short, repression is not an effective policy to prevent genocide and likely will breed discontent, which in turn could, over the long run, trigger another round of armed conflict in Rwanda. In fact given Rwanda 's history, there is every reason to expect that another cycle of armed combat could again trigger violence against civilians.
Faced with a population that some in the leadership called criminal, the RPF chose maximal prosecution. The regime arrested anyone accused of taking part in the genocide, including anyone who stole property. Rwanda 's prisons rapidly swelled. By 2000, the government had arrested more than 100,000 detainees on genocide charges. Many detainees in turn spent several years in jail without formal charges. A few years later, only a fraction had been tried. The genocide devastated Rwanda 's justice system, and detainees on that magnitude would be difficult to process in a poor country like Rwanda ’s even in normal circumstances.
In 2002, facing the reality that finishing the trials could take more than fifty years, Rwanda introduced a system of justice called ‘Gacaca’, in which the majority of cases would move out of the courtroom and into open-air sessions that community members would adjudicate. (Filip Reyntjens, "Rwanda, Ten Years On: From Genocide to Dictatorship," African Affairs 103 (2004),177-210; Front Line, "Disappearances, Arrests, Threats, Intimidation and Co-option of Human Rights Defenders 2001-2004," Dublin, 2005, see also; Human Rights Watch, "Preparing for Elections: Tightening Control in the Name of Unity," New York , May 8, 2003; and International Crisis Group, "Rwanda at the End of the Transition: A Necessary Political Liberalisation," ICG Africa Report No. 53, November 13, 2002).
Meaningful accountability thus should focus on prosecuting the national and local leaders who used their authority and power to order and legitimize killing as well as on the thugs who did the lion's share of killing and mobilization. Given its slowness, Rwanda 's justice system has generated considerable resentment among survivors and their families as well as among detainees and their families. The RPF also excludes general discussion of crimes its soldiers committed in Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo from Gacaca hearings.
The result is that many Rwandans believe the justice system is unfair: impunity still applies to the victors. That resentment is likely to contribute to long-term instability in Rwanda and to hamper reconciliation. Though the decision might have been a difficult one to make, given the magnitude of the genocide and the scale of participation, the RPF authorities might well have limited their focus to the key leaders and thugs most responsible for initiating and executing the genocide. There are lessons here for other societies trying to rebuild after mass violence.
the end, it may be true that genocide can happen in any society, but a more
accurate claim is that genocide tends to happen under particular conditions. In
previous chapters, I sought to specify the conditions that mattered in Rwanda
For war does change people, so does coercive social pressure. The desire to
protect oneself and one's family-whether from outsiders or insiders-is a
powerful motivation, one that should not be underestimated.