There is an English saying that I absolutely love, ‘he who laughs last, laughs best. Well, I’m laughing all the way to the bank, figuratively of course. There is another saying that comes straight from the Good Book, ‘the truth will set you free’. I never thought that I would look at France and say “merci beaucoup”, but I think that French judge Mark Trevidic is totally deserving of my thanks. Not because of his investigation but because his report is the final chapter of the murder mystery ‘who killed former president Juvenal Habyarimana’?
I won’t lie and say that I’m a totally impartial observer. I totally believed my government when they told me that the Rwandese Patriotic Army (RPA) didn’t shoot down the plane. I didn’t make sense to me why the organisation would do so especially when it had received almost every concession it demanded from the MRND government of Habyarimana. And it didn’t make sense to me how members of the 600-strong special forces, holed up in the CND building (the present day Lower Chamber and Senate), could have sneaked across Kigali lugging a surface to air missile (SAM) without being detected by the paranoid army, gendarmerie and militia. Throw in the fact that journalists on the bloodthirsty Radio Television Libre des Mille Collines foretold that “something” would happen to the former President and that roadblocks were mounted moments after the downing of the plane, and one would think this was an open and shut case.
I thought so until all sorts of wild allegations started flying about; none were more damaging than the Bruguiere Report, which accused the RPA of shooting the plane down by launching the SAM from Masaka Hill, and the so-called ‘confessions’ of Theogene Rudasingwa, who told all and sundry that the President personally told him that the RPA shot down the plane. The lies that these two individuals spouted were damaging simply because they formed a narrative that was simply incomprehensible and in my humble opinion, downright evil.
These men and their lackeys wanted the world to believe that RPA caused the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi. In their warped logic, since the downing of the plane ignited the Genocide, whoever brought it down was therefore guilty of causing the Genocide. Never mind that lists of victims were compiled, arms stockpiled and machetes imported from Egypt months in advance. In these simpletons’ heads, the plane crash caused the Genocide. And by trying to blame the RPA of starting the Genocide, they attempted to remove the RPF’s major achievement; its liberation of the country from the hordes of murderous killers. They’ve failed miserably I can happily state.
What pleases me the most is that the Trevidic Report is extremely similar to the Mutsinzi Report, the investigation commissioned by the Rwandan Government a few years ago. What does it say? It says that the missiles were fired from the heavily guarded Kanombe Barracks. It proves to me, the humble taxpayer, that my leaders aren’t a bunch of liars and that my faith in them isnt misplaced.
I would hate to be an Erlinder, a Rudasingwa and an Agathe Habyarimana right now. This Report must be extremely painful reading. Not only because it exonerates the present Rwandan leadership, but it now points a finger at those we always suspected, the Akazu and Network Zero, the cabal surrounding Mrs. Habyarimana.
I’m an avid user of Twitter and I must admit that I ‘follow’ a few unsavory chaps. On the days preceding the release of this document, they were crowing about this being the final nail in the Kigali regimes coffin and tweeting gleefully. Well, the joke is on them. They aren’t so loud now and I have to wonder how they will spin this. In fact, their silence is quite deafening. I can’t wait to see where the chips finally fall. Oh happy day!