Former UN Secretary General Boutros Boutros-Ghali declared to author Robin Philpot that "the Rwandan Genocide was 100 percent American responsibility." Yet a more official narrative would have it that horrible Hutu genocidaires planned and executed a satanic scheme to eliminate nearly one million Tutsis after the Rwandan presidential plane crashed in the heart of dark Africa on April 6, 1994. Where do these two contradictory narratives come from? Which is true? Robin Philpot's vast and methodical research, extensive interviews, and close analysis of events, testimony in courts, and popular writings on the subject show not only that that official narrative is false, but that it was edified to cover up the causes of the tragedy and to protect the criminals responsible for it. What's more, to make that story more believable, the storytellers have unfailingly reproduced the literary traditions, cliches, and metaphors that provided the underpinnings of slavery, the slave-trade, and colonialism. Nearly 20 years later, the facts about the Rwandan tragedy have been so distorted and the adjudicated facts ignored that Rwanda is now used everywhere to justify so-called humanitarian intervention throughout Africa (and the world). It has become a "useful imperial fiction," and for that reason, this book seeks to find out what really happened there.
Robin Philpot is a writer, translator, and publisher. He is the author of six books in French on international and Canada/Quebec political issues and is coauthor with Jacques Lacoursiere of A People's History of Quebec.