Apr 11, 2008

grenade thrown at Rwanda's genocide museum (April 11)

"A man walked up to the museum and threw a grenade at the policemen on guard. It killed one of them instantly," said police spokesman Marcel Higiro in Kigali. "Another was seriously injured and has been hospitalised."

"It must be one of those extremist fellows still harbouring the genocide ideology," Higiro said.

Rwanda is in the fifth day of an official week of mourning that follows the 14th anniversary of the start of 100 days in which Hutu extremists slaughtered 800,000 ethnic Tutsis and moderate Hutus. Some Hutus complain that the mourning period, during which all bars and other recreational facilities are shut down, enforces a perception of collective guilt against their ethnic group.

According to a bystander, the attacker ran into the neighborhood, stole a bicycle, and sped away. The bystander told police he thought he knew the man. "Oh yes, I think I know him. He's the brother of someone I used to know. They are Hutus. If it's him, you'll see he's missing an arm and a leg. The left leg. He was given (prostheses) but they are very uncomfortable to wear. Your skin itches terribly. I have the same problem." He showed where the skin on his arm had become hardened into an ugly scab from his own wooden arm.

"It makes you do crazy things," he added. "But you should see his wife. She has no arms or legs either. Just an upper body. Very ugly. Also, his children are, what do you say, 'incomplete'. We are all 'incomplete here'. Maybe this is why he did it."

"But don't worry, we'll catch him," said the bystander. "We'll cut him into pieces of stew. We never forget. But I don't think this was an attack on the museum, more likely the man just needs a job. Kill a policeman and he will need to be replaced. And this is not a bad job standing in front of the museum. Many dignitaries come here. They give money, they look at you, what do you say, as though you are a poor idea, but it was a good try, like you are someone who can eat pity. Well, many do. Some people are growing fat on pity while the rest of us starve."

1 comment:

Anjuli said...

the final line "some people are growing fat on pity while the rest of us starve"-- is so painfully true!

What a tragic scenario this is.