19 April, 2009

Candles for Rwanda

15 years after the genocide we remember the 1,000,000 people who lost their lives in 100 days. We remember "the part of our humanity that died," to quote Whitaker from the film below, as we stood silent. We remember the many men, women and children that were killed. And we remember the many men and women who live with the horror of what they did, who turned against their neighbor and family and friends and did the unspeakable. We remember the genocide and realize that anyone is capable of anything - that evil is not beyond anyone.

But we also remember that another genocide is happening right next door, started and fueled by Hutus and Tutsis (among others) and that the world is still mostly silent in the face of the DRC.

We should light a candle for the tens of thousands of women and girls who have been raped, for the 5.5 million who have died, for the many more displaced,
for the children pulled into combat.

We should light a candle for the greed of money, power and resources that continues to fuel this war - for the government in the Congo that has never been given a chance, for the Rwandan government that won't do its part and call its people home, for the world governments who don't want to interfere because, yet again, resources are more vital than the people collecting them - enslaved adults and children, and for the electronic companies who don't care enough to ask where the
cobalt in their products comes from.

We should light a candle for the fact that the world is yet again doing nothing to stop this genocide.

The genocide in Rwanda, the slaughter of Tutsis by Hutus ended 15 years ago, but there has been another genocide 5.5 million strong, that has been going on ever since...

Who will light a candle for them?