Showing posts with label Rwanda. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Rwanda. Show all posts

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Graphic Novels and the Rwandan Genocide

Rwanda 1994 by Pat Masioni 
Deogratias by Stassen
Dogma by stéphane betbeder and bonetti

Monday, July 18, 2011

Rwanda: Outpeddaling the Past

In the excerpt below from the much emailed piece over at the New Yorker about the Rwandan cycling team and their preparations for Tour of Rwanda 2010, Philip Gourevitch connects pain trapped in the past to the pain a cyclist endures to get away from it:
Cycling is an excruciating sport—a rider’s power is only as great as his capacity to endure pain—and it is often remarked that the best cyclists experience their physical agonies as a relief from private torments. The bike gives suffering a purpose. Jock, who was one of America’s foremost cycling champions in the nineteen-eighties, told me that he got into racing to get out of the house after his parents divorced. “I relate to pain,” he said. Gasore’s home-town teammate, Sibo, told me much the same thing. When he bought his first bike (like Gasore, with earnings from growing potatoes), Sibo had gone joyriding. With the bike, he felt rich and tried to act accordingly, like a man of leisure and ease: “Every time I’d come to a beautiful place, I’d pedal around, checking it out.” Then he took up racing, and he found the hardship addictive. “The bike is good. I forgot all the pain I had before I joined the team,” Sibo told me. “Cycling is like a fatal drug. When you get into it, you don’t want to do anything else. You don’t look to one side or another.” Read more.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Rwanda: Kagame on Twitter

Paul Kagame
No, the point underlined is that while some in UN,Human rights grps n media criticise,they r not without serious flaws..!
Flashback to a similar excerpt from his second inauguration
speech - here.

Kagame appears to closely monitor Twitter for any mentions of Rwanda. His official feed is dominated by notes of thanks to others who have tweeted Rwanda-related developments. "It is great (Kagame) engaging with a critic like me on Twitter," Birrell noted. "Just shame he doesn't allow such debate in Rwanda with his own people."
London Dispatch:
But you have to give credit to a man who feels so passionate about his country that he is willing to take on any critic of his on the ground, at home, away from home and in the air (read cyber space).... You begin to see the reason why PK behaves the way he does. He has been made to believe that he is Rwanda’s savior, Stephen Kinser even referred to him as the Man Who Dreamed Rwanda’s Rebirth. Bill Clinton has showered him with all sorts of prizes for excellently guiding Rwanda out of the rubble to a respectable status as a nation...
A View from the Cave commenter:
Rwanda needs to look at NGOs as partners and address their criticism with valid points. Saying everyone who dares speak against the regime and its president is "out of touch with Rwanda and Rwandans" does not address any of the problematic issues. If you tell me that I'm not a professional photographer because you see me using a point and shoot camera, I won't just point out your being out of touch with photography, I will tell you why I chose to use that particular camera. Might be its features, need for subtlety, etc. Same with Kigali, they need to say, for example, that the tabloids were banned because of A, B, and C. That the investigation into the murder of Rwisereka is ongoing, closed, or in some other phase. That Ingabire and other political prisoners are held because of plausible reasons. Based on what I have observed, however, the reasons given by the Rwandan regime don't add up so they seek to attack and marginalize whoever dares raise questions about them. If this is what progress for Africa is, I don't want it and there are many who don't want it either. True progress will come from empowering the people and not hoodwinking them.
Kigaliwire... on the technology, the exchange and Rwanda's soft skin:
I can’t recall seeing a similar Q&A exchange between a head of state and a journalist on Twitter. I’m not sure Twitter is the ideal place for tit-for-tat arguments on substantial questions – 140 character messages leave little space for nuance or depth. In addition, while I see engagement in general as a largely positive step on Rwanda’s behalf, I do worry that Rwanda spends an unusually large amount of time responding to critics across social networks, blogs, newspapers and other media. Criticism aside, the geek in me likes the fact that both the President and the Foreign Minister tweet from Blackberry phones… It’s also worth noting that since April, 2011, you can tweet in Rwanda from SMS text message. It’s been surprisingly useful in traffic jams, during power outages and Internet downtime in the capital.
Sky and Soil...on foreign minister Louise Mushikiwabo's performance:
Kagame didn't actually answer any of the questions posed by Birrell about his government's silencing of political and media opposition. Instead it was a slinging match in which the foreign minister, Louise Mushikwabo also got involved. In a rather strange move, she protected her tweets the very next day as if it was an act of self-protection from a threat, but its an act of hiding. Doesn't she know protecting your tweets only restricts who can see them, but those already following you, can still interact with you and retweet your tweets for others to see? Restricting dialogue won't stop truth-seekers and critics, nor does it advance the democracy and openness which Kagame claims his government does, in the YouTube interview.
More links over at View from a Cave  + Kagame actually said the exact same thing in a Q&A after giving the Oppenheimer lecture at IISS in London last year and this was what we thought.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Rwanda: A Feature Length Film

Africa is a Country keeps the flashlight on last month's Tribeca fest premier of Kivu Ruhorahosa's "Grey Matter",  a first full length feature from Rwanda by Rwandans.

NY Times director Q & A - here. Why the big deal? Well, it was only a few years ago we were blogging about Rwandans rebuilding their country and putting in place its first cinema house and starting to make films again:

H/T: Neo-Griot

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Africa: Animation Dump

South Africa's first 3D animation export: Jock of the Bushveld from Duncan MacNeillie/Jock Animation, signed to Visio Entertainment for US and UK release later 2011:

Recall the old trailer for Zambezia from Cape Town studio Triggerfish? Below, the full U.S promo posted back in November. International release details - here:

According to Timbuktu Chronicles and Paula Callus , the website for the Nigerian-produced children animation Bino and Fino is up. In the clip below, children are taught what "colonialism" is - "those uninvited visitors" (lol).

Jamati Online flags the longer clip below from TransTales' Mark of Uru (2008) for the DVD release and music video. Dialogue in the excerpt below is all kinds of awesome:

A recently stumbled on snippet from German-Burkinabe animator  Sawadogo Cilia's 2005 L'arbre aux Esprits:

L'arbre aux Esprits
Uploaded by ACAPIGA. - Independent web videos.

It was also fun to see the amount of work that went into animating the scene from Africa United where the indefatigable Dudu tells the other kids a story:

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Rwanda: Kagame - Season 2

The "screw the NGOs" portion from his inauguaration speech:
There is no doubt that we face many problems in Africa, and the biggest one of all, is not the lack of democracy, but poverty, and the dependence that comes with underdevelopment. It is this situation of dependence that allows some governments, and even NGOs – who are not accountable to anyone – to think they have a right to dictate the conduct of legitimate state actors. African governments are often accused of being corrupt and not responsive to the needs of our populations. But when we do what every government is expected to do – deliver services; instil accountability, transparency and efficiency; build social and economic infrastructure; and raise living standards – the goalposts change, and we are then accused of forcing progress on the people and of being repressive. Furthermore, these external actors turn around, and promote the ideas of adventurers who have no legitimacy, and who do not relate to the majority of the people, and deserve nothing more than to be ignored. This duplicity cannot be construed as confusion or lack of understanding. Rather, it is evidence of hypocrisy and a patronising attitude towards our entire continent, which perpetuates the cycle of poverty and underdevelopment, continues to deprive our people of their dignity, and which Africans must continue to stand up against.

danm! & lol

Monday, August 30, 2010

Africa: Films

Sudan/London - BBC 4 premiers Gabriel Range's I'm A Slave (2010) tonight (click on pic). Written by Jeremy Brock, it stars Wunmi Mosaku as Malia, a Sudanese 12 yr old taken to London to work -- above they talk about the making. The good folks at S&A also unearthed another clip - more here.

Ghana/New York - BBC's Strand talks to NY writer and critic Michael Atkinson - here- about the deafening festival buzz around Sean Baker's Prince of Broadway (2010), which opens in NY, Sept 3rd. The film spins--in a guerrilla documentary manner--a tale around Lucky, an illegal immigrant-New York street hustler from Ghana, played by Prince Adu, who is left with a baby to pull off what looks like a Pursuit of Happyness situation.  S&A has more on dir. Lee Daniels signing on to help the film go mainstream:

Rwanda - Trailer for Alrick Brown's Kinyarwanda, a tale interweaving six different tales that together form one grand narrative, which the filmmakers claim provides "the most complex and real depiction yet presented of human resilience and life during the [Rwandan] genocide."

Friday, July 2, 2010

East Africa: Rwanda - Regional Integration, Cont'd

The report claims Rwanda is way ahead of the other countries in the EAC in pulling down all restrictions to free flow of trade:

Makes sense. Rwanda's economy is #5 in Sub Sahara Africa (and #67 in the world) on the World Bank's ease of doing business rankings, after Namibia, Botswana, South Africa and Mauritius.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Rwanda/ USA: Rugby - Different Post Conflicts. Same Game.

David Hughes' exploits with the Rwandan Rugby club reminds me of this '08 NYT report about Hyde's head coach, Tal Bayer, and the U.S. first all African-American high school rugby team.

I don't think it is about the rugby per se. However, I think the novelty of rugby as a black sport plays into a determination that comes with a bigger cause. What's more, perhaps, something can be said for the role of the rituals and traditions embedded in rugby and the role these play in introducing the discipline it takes to forge the bonds that can help break those other negative, social and systemic bonds.

Nigeria: A Sight for Sore Eyes

...the constitution works... Finally. A new president.

H/T: Loomie via Jeremy

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Africa: Christiane Amanpour's Final Sign Off at CNN

 at CNN

In the clip she replays some of Amanpour PS' memorable moments: Leymah Gbowee on Taylor, Paul Kagame on Paul Kagame, Jacob Zuma on shower heads and Uncle Bob on Desmond Tutu...

She will be taking over the reins of ABC flagship news show, This Week, formerly hosted by George Stephanopoulos.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Rwanda/ Uganda: This Revolution Will Be Embedded

I' Don't Want to Wait in Vain performed by Somi.

Nat Geo music catches up with Somi at SXSW last month - here - and NPR's Derek Path breaks her latest album down below:

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Rwanda: Silencing Dissent

Want a study in slant? Compare Rwanda's New Times report on opposition leader Victoire Ingabire, which uses words like "interception" and "attempted escape" to pile on her "guilt," to the AFP report which insists Ingabire "was not arrested but required to remain in Rwanda for further questioning," according to police spokesman, Eric Kayiranga. This comes as no surprise since New Times editor managing director already, point blank, told everyone  in that Geoffrey York's Globe and Mail piece that:
The managing director of the New Times, Joseph Bideri, confirmed that the newspaper refuses to give any “space” to Ms. Ingabire's responses. He wrote a personal letter to her on Jan. 22, vowing she would never get a “platform” in the newspaper because she is a “genocide denier.” In an interview, however, Mr. Bideri was unable to provide any evidence that Ms. Ingabire denies the genocide. In fact, in her public speeches and in a lengthy interview with The Globe and Mail, she repeatedly acknowledged and condemned the 1994 genocide. She draws a distinction between the slaughter of the Tutsis – which she calls a genocide – and the killings of many Hutus, which she describes as a "crime against humanity."
TiA thinks the Tutsi suppression is a blockhead strategy:
I hope (but doubt) that the donor governments will have the good sense to call Kagame out on these abuses of his power. The fight over whether any of Ingabire's comments constitute "genocide ideology" or genocide denial will serve as a front for what this is really about: the fact that Kagame doesn't want to allow a significant challenge to his power. I think this is an irrational stance. The RPF could stand on its record of re-establishing security and rebuilding the economy against an opposition that has no accomplishments to speak of. This strategy might actually overcome the problem of ethnically-based voting in which citizens vote on the basis of ethnicity along. But by continuing to silence dissent and pretend that ethnicity doesn't matter to most Rwandans, Kagame lets resentment of the RPF's rule fester.
AllAfrica puts all the pieces together - here.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Rwanda: Women and Business 101

A move to Nigeria offers a life enriching experience and ideas being applied in Rwanda:

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Rwanda: "Abyssnian Jews"

Kigali Memorial Centre, Gisozi/ pic: I, Inisheer

Switching from French to English instruction in schools and joining the British commonwealth were some of the moves Rwanda made to turn the page on what it considers a Franco-colonial genocide past.On visiting Rwanda, Josh Kron writes in the Guardian that even though Rwandans now downplay their Hutu and Tutsi ethnicity, Tutsi, because of the "historical contingency" in Israel's and Rwanda's genocide experiences, are now more inclined to play up their "Jewishness" and also trace their genealogically connection to Israel:
...what caught my attention most were the references to Israel, the references to the Jews. At first it seemed obvious; as historical cousins of genocide Israel and Rwanda had a special bond. Like Israel, Rwanda had escaped genocide to become a shining example in a troublesome part of the world. But the reference and affirmation was much more than historical contingency; it was, according to them, true blood. According to some historians and Tutsi scholars, the group originally came to Rwanda from Ethiopia in the 15th century. Although played down by the current government, the belief persists. To Tutsis, the genealogical lineage to Ethiopia connects them to a greater constellation including ancient Hebrews.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Africa: The French... The Lebanese

BBC's Andrew Walker on the origins of the Lebanese community in West Africa:
The real story of the Lebanese in West Africa does begin with sea journeys in the late 19 Century. Relatives of Lebanese passengers on board the crashed Ethiopian airlines flight. But it is more likely they chose to go to West Africa because at around that time American countries tightened their entry requirements after high levels of immigration during the previous century. The French government also ran a recruiting campaign in Beirut looking for middlemen to work the boom in West African groundnut farming, at a time of agricultural crisis in Lebanon.
The Lebanese in West Africa have always been merchants, using their connections abroad to source goods for import, and - like other migrant groups - they use their family networks to keep their costs down. As a result they have built a strong economic presence across the region. Nowadays, the Lebanese community has interests in many areas and are the backbone of most markets - car importing, mining, oil services, defence contracts - and the more shadowy worlds of gun-running, diamond-smuggling and crude-oil theft.
Stephen Smith, former deputy editor of Le Monde, writes about the slow end to French influence in Africa in the London Review of Books - an extract from his soon to be published book, Voyage en Postcolonie, le Nouveau Monde Franco-Africain:
It’s hard to date the death of Françafrique precisely: the exquisite corpse still haunts many minds, and ghost stories are a lucrative business. Even so, three events in 1994 adumbrated the end: the (unprecedented) devaluation of the CFA franc and with it the crumbling of the monetary wall around the Franco-African enclave economy; the genocide in Rwanda, which left blood on the hands of Africa’s gendarme (having failed to understand a country outside its historical zone of influence, France had thrown its weight behind ‘Hutu power’); and finally, the state funeral of the Ivorian president, Félix Houphouët-Boigny, the sub-Saharan godfather of Françafrique and an enthusiast of the ‘Franco-African state’ – indeed, it was Houphouët who coined the term at a party congress in 1973.

His last rites were conducted in the basilica of Yamoussoukro, a building taller than St Peter’s, which he’d financed from his own ‘private fund’. It was here, I suspect, that the Franco-African state was laid to rest in the presence of the remaining dramatis personae: two generations of French and African heads of state, prime ministers, ministers, missi dominici, merchants and minions.
H/T: Rachel Strohm

Monday, February 1, 2010

Africa: It's Land, Stupid

In CS Monitor, Jina Moore writes about how governments and people  taking on the thorny issue of land reform across Africa might be the magic bullet that could structurally solve African dysfunction and chaos. But before loading the chamber, she describes the NGO-aid money-media fueled status-quo as:
Africa's most famous disasters, many argue, could have been prevented with changes in national land laws or better local conflict resolution but for one problem: Prevention doesn't sell. What does sell – what gets airtime, aid dollars, and military or other attention – is the violent chaos the world fails to prevent. By the time land conflict gets an international audience, land is an afterthought; talk turns to tribe and ethnicity or local politics and corruption.

News coverage and nonprofits focus on the worst symptoms – refugees, rapes, massacres. Distracted by suffering, they miss the structural problem that can, it turns out, be solved. Fixing the land problem may lay the foundation for fixing so many others, from poverty to famine to ethnic conflict. If farmers feel their claims to plots are sound, if social groups feel land policies are impartial and just, and if women and men have equal rights to the soil, experts say Africa's other ills will be easier to treat.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Rwanda: Franco Doesn't Phone or Live Here Anymore

France 24 looks at Rwanda's decision to join the Commonwealth and how the country ties its Francophone-ness to a genocide past it's trying to shed for new Anglophone clothes:

So what did France do? Author Stephen Kinzer wrote in the Boston Globe:
Even as the genocide was unfolding, reports of France's support for it began appearing in French newspapers. French soldiers who arrived in Rwanda believing that they had come to protect victims soon realized that they were, in fact, protecting killers, and several communicated their disgust to French journalists. In 1995 President Jacques Chirac of France made a remarkably honest confession of his nation's guilt. "France . . . delivered protected people to their horrors. These dark hours have sullied our history forever and are an insult to our past and our traditions." Unfortunately Chirac was not speaking about Rwanda, but about France's delivery of French Jews to the Nazi murder machine during World War II. His statement suggests that it takes nations at least half a century before they can apologize for their misdeeds.
And less time than that to commit the same misdeeds again.

Monday, January 4, 2010

East Africa: Regional Integration - EAC Forecast

Last year Rwanda, Kenya, Uganda, Burundi, Tanzania and Zanzibar all signed in Arusha the Customs Union and the Common Market protocol. It clears the way to remove internal taxes and harmonise external import duties, and even though Kenya, "which has the region’s strongest manufacturers, retailers and banks," is undoubtedly going to be the East African Community's engine and will gain most from integration, the Economist cautions that "for the EAC to succeed, [the] other [countries] must win too" and takes a shot at explainng how.


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