RESEARCH AND REFLECTION
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Using all learning available this session including biblical and extra-biblical resources, your own research, and the important chapter 10 material on Human Rights, write a quality 6–8-pg. research & reflection paper. Your paper will be a response to the film, Ghosts of Rwanda, a film revisiting the 1994 genocide committed by Hutu militias against rival Tutsi tribespeople resulting in nearly 500,000–800,000 civilian deaths.
In a world where most students have heard the post-Holocaust mantra “Never Again,” repeatedly trumpeted, pay special attention to the stories and reminiscences of former participants in the event—UN officials from the Sec. General to Peacekeepers on the ground, key presidential and state department officials in Washington, other diplomats from both developed and developing countries, US and other international journalists, and local officials on the ground in Rwanda. One stunning takeaway from this event is a tragic ‘success’: all of the people, states, and institutions involved forged a successful temporary alliance to avoid a policy of humanitarian intervention that might have saved tens of thousands of lives!
Answer the following prompts in any manner you wish, either separately or integrated:
§ How and why did it happen?
§ With so much talk of “Never Again” as well as human rights law criminalizing genocide, how and why did so many good, responsible people, states, and institutions agree to do nothing in the face of mass murder? Does the criminalization of genocide actually matter, or does it create more complication than it resolves?
§ Were some international actors or people more culpable than others?
§ Did the media play a role here as an early warning system, or worse, as an aid to the killing?
§ Does the current international norm known as R2P (the Right to Protect) seems a robust deterrent likely to change the desirability of states for military-based humanitarian intervention?
§ More recently, Yale Holocaust historian Tim Snyder has attempted to explain how so many civilians became complicit in helping Nazis commit mass murder in Eastern Europe. Massive numbers of civilians have been killed in Darfur (beginning in 2003, also referred to as genocide) and the Syrian civil war, with little robust willingness on the part of developed nations to militarily intervene—is there a pattern of conditions or behaviors here that triggers a ‘bystander’ policy for states and international institutions?
§ Finally, why do you think Christian Churches, statesmen, and NGOs were not particularly different than others in their response to the Rwanda crisis? The Jewish and Christian faith traditions have traditionally asked, “Am I my brother’s keeper?”, a rhetorical question signaling our moral responsibility to safeguard the lives of humans as humans. But in cases like these it needs to be asked—why has the organized Church been slow to mobilize? Apart from humanitarian aid assistance, did they mobilize for Darfur and Syria?
The paper must be in current Turabian style with default margins and 12-pt Times New Roman font and submitted in an MS Word document. The paper must include a title page and reference page also in current Turabian format. You must include citations to a sufficient number of appropriate scholarly sources to fully support your assertions and conclusions (which will likely require more than the minimum number of citations); the paper must contain at least 6–8 scholarly sources original to this paper and not including the course textbook.