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Comparison Of Rwandan Genocide And Holocaust

1222 words - 5 pages

With the darkest sides of humanity exposed, where would you stand? The Rwandan genocide was a mass murder that began April 6, 1994, lasting about 100 days (History.com Staff). The death toll reached 800,000 of mostly Tutsis (Fisanick 40). Struggles for governmental control had altered many times but the Hutus seized authority when the genocide commenced (Fisanick 40). The Holocaust was the persecution and massacre of European Jews, primarily led by Adolf Hitler and the Nazi Party during World War II, lasting from January 30, 1933 to May 8, 1945 (“Introduction”). The Rwandan genocide and the Holocaust are parallel in its roots of religious affiliations as well as the insignificant international assistance offered during the times of the massacres. However, imprisonment prior to killing and the actual method of killing considerably separate the two.
Similitude of these genocides can be seen in their derivations and the negligence casted across the world in response to both situations. Origins of both revolting slaughters revolved around religion. Favoritism of the Tutsis over the Hutus is believed to be the initial point that led to the genocide as missionaries of the Catholic Church advantaged only the Tutsis in providing them with education (Fisanick 40). White Father Leon Classe, a missionary, suggested this as he believed the preferential treatment based on social hierarchy was the only way for a successful mission (Fisanick 43). This gained knowledge served as an opportunity to seize ultimate authority over the Hutus (Fisanick 40). Ironically, towards the end of the genocide, Catholic bishops expressed in a letter that to rebuild Rwanda, the disposal of racial barriers was vital (Fisanick 45). It was almost a joke since the church’s involvement in the genocide was no secret and received a response of “the church is sick” from the Episcopal Conference (Fisanick 46). Similarly, racial inferiority was the Nazi’s basis for their cause of killing nearly six million Jews, as well as other groups disliked by the German authority (“Introduction”). The Jews were perceived as a threat to the German race (“Path”). Gypsies, Polish intellectuals, German communists and socialists, Jehovah’s witnesses, and homosexuals were also categorized as less than humans; parasites (“Introduction”). Adolf Hitler used the Jews as a scapegoat by amplifying the already existing anti-Semantic notions and blaming them for the economic issues generated by World War I (“Introduction”).
Worldwide efforts proved exceedingly limited in each genocide. To avoid further emergency intervention, the killings were not specifically referred to as a ‘genocide’ but as a “breakdown in the ceasefire between the Tutsi and the Hutu” (“History.com Staff”). This created the connotation of a civil dispute, not anything worth involving other nations or expending resources on. International obliviousness and lack of interference was broached in the UN’s statement to a PBS...

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