Free Essay

European Imperialism Legacy in Rwanda

In: Historical Events

Submitted By michellesalv
Words 1775
Pages 8
EUROPEAN IMPERIALISM LEGACY IN RWANDA

In We Wish To Inform You That Tomorrow We Will Be Killed With Our Families, author Philip Gourevitch writes, “Whatever Hutu and Tutsi identity may have stood for in the pre-colonial state no longer mattered; the Belgians had made “ethnicity” the defining feature of Rwandan existence”. In his book, he analyzes the background and causes of the Rwandan genocide in 1994 through interviews with survivors or descendants, and through his own trips to the country. The horrible tragedy of 1994 was a result the Hutus getting retaliation on the Tutsi tribe, but these two tribes were not always seen as two separate races. After the Belgium Empire gained control of Rwanda, it was through their regime that Hutus and Tutsis were manipulated to plot against each other, and that one was more superior to the other. By examining the pre-colonial history of Rwanda, Belgium control leading up to the country’s independence, and the genocide of the Tutsis by the Hutus, we can legitimately connect the legacy of European imperialism to the genocide of 1994, and see how much of an impact imperialism has had on the country. The pre-colonial era in Rwanda is important to consider when determining how much of an impact imperialism did have on the country. Before Belgium took control over Rwanda, the country was inhabited by “cave-dwelling pygmies whose descendants today are called the Twa people, a marginalized and disenfranchised group”. The Hutus and Tutsi tribes came into the picture in later centuries, while reports say that the Hutus may have settled first. While the exact relationship of the Twa, Hutu, and Tutsi tribes is somewhat unknown, it is believed that that the relationship was one of mutual benefit, and each tribe’s skills and trades were exchanged. The Hutu and Tutsi tribes did not always have a turbulent relationship with one another, and the tribes had many similarities. Gourevitch writes that the two tribes shared the same culture, language, religion, political views, and frequently intermarried and lived amongst each other in peace and friendship. One of the only differences between the two tribes was that Hutus were cultivators and Tutsis were herdsmen. The pre-colonial period of Rwanda involved tribes living under the reign of a ruler, but ultimately did not have civil wars against each other. Social stratification was however heightened and practiced more thoroughly with the election of Tutski king Mwami Kigeri Rwabugiri. It was then that military and political power had grown and the Tutsi and Hutu tribes had their place in society cut out. The feudal system was that Tutsis were aristocrats and Hutus were vassals. Tutsis usually had greater financial power than the Hutus and held political and military office positions. Eventually the two tribes grew distant from each other and adopted different cultures. While argued by many, it is thought that the physical differences between the two tribes are prevalent: Tutsis were lighter-skinned, tall and thin, while the Hutus were darker-skinned, short, and broad. The social stratification between these tribes was soon to be exercised even more when Rwanda is taken over by the German and Belgium empire. The Conference of Berlin in 1885 was a meeting of European powers to divvy up the states of Africa. Germany originally gained control of Rwanda in 1897 when the country was in deep political turmoil after the death of their king. Belgium then was granted the country as a result of World War I and more than ever, the Tutsi and Hutu tribes were seen as “opposing “ethnic” identities” and the Belgium Empire exploited this division in their colonial policy. The Belgium administration began ruling Rwanda and modifying any previous features of old Rwandan life to fit Belgium’s needs and benefits. Under Belgian colonizers, the Hutus and Tutsis were further divided against each other by scientists who determined their physical differences through a variety of tests involving the way the nose was shaped. Belgian administration determined that Tutsis could be deemed nobler because of their facial structures. Belgians were also influenced by racial ideas, and thus favored the Tutsis because they appeared more European or “white” looking. Racial discrimination peaked in 1933-34 when Belgian administration instituted “ethnic” identity cards that labeled each citizen as a Twa, Hutu, or Tutsi; while Tutsis were the minority in society (14% compared to Hutu 85%), Belgium favoritism allowed the tribe to achieve high in the ranks in society and subjugate the lower classes. The Tutsis were given more opportunity than the Hutus in both education and finances. The Belgian colonial order made sure that Tutsis knew their place above the Hutus and instructed them to discriminate and abuse the inferior tribe. Hutus were angry because they were impoverished and being abused by not only the colonizers, but also the tribe that they once were not so distant from. It was not before long that the oppressed Hutus would rebel and retaliate, and being the larger “ethnic group”, they started a social revolution in 1959. Violence ensued as the Hutus began to attack the Tutsis in well organized groups. Tutsis were left to flee to other states of Africa. The Hutus took over Tutsi rule, and declared an independent republic under the new president Gregoire Kayibanda. Gourevitch writes about a UN commission report that stated that the Rwandan social revolution had “‘brought about the racial dictatorship of one party’ and simply replaced ‘one type of oppressive regime with another’”. Rwanda became independent of Belgium in 1962, with Kayibanda as president. Gourevitch also speaks about how the Hutu tribe became “mimic men”, because they abused the Tutsi tribe in the same way that they once rebelled against. Violence had become a commonplace in Rwandan society and it ultimately stemmed by being placed in ethnic groups by the Belgian empire that deemed one tribe more superior than the other. Post-independence was an era of Hutu reign, as Hutu politicians came into power and many Tutsis were already in exile from Rwanda. However, the tension between the two tribes was certainly not over and the Tutsis were not content with the elimination of their once superior political position. In 1990, the Tutsis who were exiled into Uganda invaded Rwanda and negotiations between tribes were made. An amendment to the Rwandan constitution was made and it defined that there was to be multiparty participation in the government. Hutus were not in favor of this revision. Events that would soon follow started the genocide of 1994. The then president Habyarimana’s plane was shot down, and the Prime Minster, a Hutu, was murdered. From those two deaths started a wave of mass killings of the Tutsis led by Hutu military groups. Rwandan government organized groups that included military men, politicians, businessmen, but also church leaders and regular civilians as well. It became propaganda, and if you were a Tutsi, it was almost guaranteed you were to be dead very soon, maybe in hours. Gourevitch talked to survivor Theodore Nykilinkwaya, and he said “everyone was called to hunt the enemy”. The Rwandan government had a strict organizational plan, and if you were a Hutu, you had to follow order. If a Hutu announced he did not want to take part in the killings, he would be considered an accomplice of the opposing tribe, and would be killed. Gourevitch spoke to another man whose father was a Hutu and mother was a Tutsi and spoke about why this Hutu tribe could kill so many people in such a gruesome way. He said, “Conformity is very deep, very developed [in Rwanda]. In Rwandan history, everyone obeys authority. People revere power, and there isn’t enough education. You take a poor, ignorant population, and give them arms, and say ‘It’s yours. Kill.’ They’ll obey.” This man’s opinion, while chilling, is indicative of the violent culture that was brought into Rwandan society. The Hutus, acting as “mimic men”, killed unmercifully and abused the Tutsis, in a similar way that they had once experienced years before. This violent culture is ultimately surrounding the idea of the tribes being different races, which was enforced time and time again by the Belgian administration. The tribes were somewhat brainwashed by the Belgian empire in prior years, to believing that one tribe was to rule over another. Rwanda’s history prior to colonial rule appears to involve three tribes in a symbiotic relationship. When Belgium took over the country, the government created a system to separate the tribes by “ethnicity” and thus favored the Tutsis, which gave them the authority to abuse and subjugate the lower tribes. It would seem likely then, that the German and Belgian systems of colonialism in Rwanda during the 19th and 20th centuries had a negative and lasting impact on the rocky development of the Rwandan nation post-independence. By Belgium’s colonizing efforts, the tribes of Rwanda were taught violence based on race and ethnicity because that was the way they were ruled by their colonizers. The Tutsis ruled over the Hutus and were more privileged in society. The Hutus retaliation was a result of being called the inferior race, and knowing that they were the large majority of the country, a civil war against the Tutsis was in their favor. The Rwandan genocide of 1994 leaves many unanswered questions as to why one tribe would want to kill off another; however, when we take into consideration that the Belgium Empire was the colonizers to segregate the tribes, we can connect the imperial legacy to the horrific event.

--------------------------------------------
[ 1 ]. Philip Gourevitch, We Wish To Inform You That Tomorrow We Will Be Killed With Our Families (New York, NY: Picador, 1998), 57.
[ 2 ]. Ibid., 47.
[ 3 ]. Ibid.
[ 4 ]. “Pre-Colonial & Colonial”, Rwanda Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation. 2010. http://www.minaffet.gov.rw/index.php?id=935
[ 5 ]. Philip Gourevitch, We Wish To Inform You That Tomorrow We Will Be Killed With Our Families (New York, NY: Picador, 1998), 47.
[ 6 ]. Ibid., 48.
[ 7 ]. Ibid., 49.
[ 8 ]. Ibid., 54.
[ 9 ]. Sarah Hymowitz, Amelia Parker, “The Hutus and Tutsis”, American University Washington College of Law Center for Human Rights and Humanitarian Law, 2013. http://www.wcl.american.edu/humright/center/rwanda/jigsaw1.pdf
[ 10 ]. Philip Gourevitch, We Wish To Inform You That Tomorrow We Will Be Killed With Our Families (New York, NY: Picador, 1998), 57.
[ 11 ]. Ibid., 61
[ 12 ]. Ibid., 63
[ 13 ]. “Rwanda”, Encyclopedia Britannica Online. 2013. http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/514402/Rwanda.
[ 14 ]. Philip Gourevitch, We Wish To Inform You That Tomorrow We Will Be Killed With Our Families (New York, NY: Picador, 1998), 24.
[ 15 ]. Ibid., 23.

Similar Documents

Premium Essay

Imperialism

...HIS 102: Paper # 1 Imperialism There are many different opinions about imperialism and the “Age of Imperialism.” From a variety of people, like economists, writers, soldiers, and senators, all vary in opinion and idea about imperialism. This essay compares and contrasts the views from a J. A. Hobson, Rudyard Kipling, Frederick Lugard, and Albert Beveridge. In J. A. Hobson’s document, “Imperialism,” Hobson argues that the motivation for imperialism was not driven by the well being and advantages for the nation, but by the interests and private gains of different social classes. By reading this document, you can get the impression that Hobson felt that imperialism was a result from demoralization of certain classes. According to Hobson, imperialism was not just inessential for a nation, but obscene as well. This clashes with why Hobson felt that the underdeveloped countries were so desirable to build their economic assets with. He summarizes that these desirable and fortunate investments appealed to the favored classes because it gave these classes more than what was needed in sources of income. Also, Hobson was one hundred percent against imperialism and argued that the impact of imperialism was negative. In the text he states, “It is the besetting sin of all successful States, and its penalty is unalterable in the order of nature” (456). That statement lets the reader know exactly how Hobson felt about imperialism and its impact as a whole. Hobson even mentions in the......

Words: 1149 - Pages: 5

Premium Essay

Wilson's Imperialism

...Casey Moseley American History 4/28/12 Wilson’s Moral Imperialism During the early 1900’s, Woodrow Wilson proclaimed what he wanted in the world, democracy for all nations.  This meant that he believed that countries should have the right to resist their government and become a democratic nation.  He used the Fourteen Points and the Treaty of Versailles as grounds for his beliefs. The main themes of the Fourteen Points were self-determination, freedom of the seas, and open diplomacy.  Wilson’s ideals would have been beneficial to the world had they been able to survive in such a time of struggle. However, his views of moral imperialism were not only unrealistic, but Wilson himself contradicted what he said.   Before Wilson even announced the Fourteen Points, Vladimir Lenin, the new dictator of Russia, published the secret treaties the Allies agreed to.  In the treaties, the Allies had plans of sharing the territories conquered during the war. This was a complete catastrophe for Wilson since he promoted a just peace in Europe.  Soon after, Wilson announced the Fourteen Points.  Included in the Fourteen Points was the right of self-determination for countries and “the readjustment of colonial claims with colonized people given “equal weight” in deciding their futures, and the creation of a “general association of nations” to preserve the peace” (Foner, p. 778). The general association of nations would be known as the League of Nations. This document was extremely......

Words: 880 - Pages: 4

Premium Essay

Rwanda

...The Role of the 1990-1993 Civil War as a Precursor to the 1994 Rwandan Genocide Nora Aly Student #10025622 Poli470 Words: 3,451 Introduction: Background of Rwanda Ethnic distinctions and fragmentations, whether actual or perceived have proved to be the causes of several genocides throughout history; in the case of the Rwandan genocide, this was no exception. The Twa, the Hutu and the Tutsi were and continue to be the groups of people constituting Rwanda (Pearn J, 203). Tensions and conflicts with groups in Rwandan society, primarily with the Hutus and the Tutsis eventually led to the immensely destructive 1994 genocide of the Tutsi people as well as Hutu people perceived to be Tutsi sympathizers and supporters. The 1994 Rwandan Genocide, executed mainly by Hutu powers, resulted in approximately 10,000 deaths for 100 days which is the highest rate of killing seen throughout any known act in history (Cohen, J). Within the time period of the communal existence of the Hutus and the Tutsis, political struggle, rivalry, colonization, and civil war were all factors that assisted in leading to the tension that finally erupted into a brutal act of genocidal violence against all Tutsi people. Close examination and analysis of the civil war which occurred during 1990-1993 between the Hutus and the Tutsis, will be elaborated extensively to assist in accounting for the eruption of the genocide. Through a close, detailed analysis of the political, ethnic and socio-economic factors......

Words: 3707 - Pages: 15

Free Essay

Imperialism

...Imperialism > After the U.S. had expanded across the continent, many in the U.S. wanted to expand our territory to new lands. > Imperialism - to control weaker territories pollitcly, ecinomicly or millitarily. > Europeans nations had carved up Africa and much of Asia. > Three factors fueled American imperialism: The desire for military strenth; and a thirst for new markets; and a belief in our cultural superiority. Sewards Folly > in 1867, Sec. of State William Seward had arranged for the U.S. to buy Alaska from Russia. >Many Americans opposed the sale, called it "Serwards Folly",or "Sewards Ice Box". Hawai'i > Americans had been coming to the island kingdom since the 1820's. >By the 1890's, Anglos controlled over 75% of the exporting wealth through large sugar plantations. >The Queen of Hawai'i wanted to take some of the land back and give it to native Hawaians. >Eventually, the plantation owners hired a private army, overthrew the government and applied for admission as a territory of the U.S. Trouble in Cuba > Just 90 Miles south of Florida, the people had been fighting to become free of spain. > Since Cuba supplied Spain with most of its income, spain didnt want to lose them. > in 1896 the spanish government tried to put down another rebellion. he crowded all the people into concentration camps. > when cubans began to die of starvation and disease in the camps, American newspaper wrote exaggerated stories about the horrors there. Us goes to war with spain >Yellow......

Words: 408 - Pages: 2

Premium Essay

Imperialism

...20th century, European nations, such as the Great Britain, France, Italy, and Germany, expanded their empire building globally with their extremely superior military forces. They could very easily take over other “undeveloped” nations, since they had newly discovered quinine, which was effective in controlling attacks of malaria, and they had developed steamship and international telegraph. Imperialism is a term that refers to the economic and political domination or control of one country or nation by another one which is technologically and economically more advanced. The economic factors of Africa lured European Powers to its potential money making land that it has to offer.  Due to the Industrial Revolution in Europe, production with the help of machines increased. European demand for raw materials such as oil, copper, rubber, cocoa, and gold increased (Document 3). Africa was seen as being capable of supplying the needed raw materials. As a result, European powers partitioned Africa in order to secure some territories in order to provide a constant supply of raw materials to their industries in Europe. As they secured land in Africa, many countries stumbled upon huge diamond mines that increased the value of the land. With the help of machines during the Industrial Revolution, more goods were produced in the European industries but the local consumption was the same. This meant that not all the goods produced in Europe were locally sold and used in Europe. Therefore,......

Words: 898 - Pages: 4

Premium Essay

Imperialism

...Imperial America EDGE Fall Quarter 2003 Tim Chueh Ambert Ho 12/5/03 What Is Imperialism? “Imperialism is the highest stage of capitalism…characterized by monopoly corporations and the compulsion to export capital abroad for higher profits. Unlike capitalism in the earlier stages, in the imperialist stage, capitalism has no more progress to bring the world…the cause of contemporary militarism” – Lenin “The policy, practice, or advocacy of seeking, or acquiescing in, the extension of the control, dominion, or empire of a nation, as by the acquirement of new, esp. distant, territory or dependencies, or by the closer union of parts more or less independent of each other for operations of war, copyright, internal commerce, etc.” – Oxford dictionary The word imperialism derives from “empire.” As such, it is useful to spend a bit of time to define the word. In working towards a minimal definition, Stanford Professor of Archaeology J. Manning in his first lecture on Ancient Empires starts with: “An empire is a territorially extensive hierarchically political organization.” Unfortunately this definition is too vague. All states encountered in human history are by definition hierarchical, and many nations today are vast compared to......

Words: 10655 - Pages: 43

Premium Essay

Imperialism

...Imperialism There is one particular figure whose name looms large, and whose spectre lingers, in indigenous discussions of encounters with the West: Christopher Columbus. It is not simply that Columbus is identified as the one who started it all, but rather that he has come to represent a huge legacy of suffering and destruction. Columbus ‘names’ that legacy more than any other individual.2 He sets its modern time frame (500 years) and defines the outer limits of that legacy, that is, total destruction.3 But there are other significant figures who symbolize and frame indigenous experiences in other places. In the imperial literature these are the ‘heroes’, the discoverers and adventurers, the ‘fathers’ of colonialism. In the indigenous literature these figures are not so admired; their deeds are definitely not the deeds of wonderful discoverers and conquering heroes. In the South Pacific, for example it is the British explorer James Cook, whose expeditions had a very clear scientific purpose and whose first encounters with indigenous peoples were fastidiously recorded. Hawai’ian academic Haunani Kay Trask’s list of what Cook brought to the Pacific includes: ‘capitalism, Western political ideas (such as predatory individualism) and Christianity. Most destructive of all he brought diseases that ravaged my people until we were but a remnant of what we had been on contact with his pestilent crew.’4 The French are remembered by Tasmanian Aborigine Greg Lehman, ‘not [for] the......

Words: 2036 - Pages: 9

Free Essay

Rwanda Paper

...Bonita Robinson October 24, 2013 English 102 11:00 – 11:50 Professor: Adam Fisher Hotel Rwanda Movie Review “Hotel Rwanda” is a harsh drama based on a true story that addresses the genocide in Rwanda in the early mid to nineties. Generations of European conquest by the Belgians, resulted in the establishment of two social classes: the Hutu and Tutsi. For the majority of the movie, the minority Tutsi ruled and oppressed the Hutu, but as the level of power reversed, the Hutu, who were in the majority, became determined in their objective for eradicating the Tutsi people. The movie “Hotel Rwanda” is an adaptation of the story of Paul Rusesabagina (played by Don Cheadle), who is a mild mannered, well respected, and business savvy, Hutu hotel manager whose livelihood is sacrificed for a greater cause amidst widespread savagery and barbarism. Although his social status provides him with relatively safety, his Tutsi wife, family and neighbors must face life-threatening conditions. Paul’s elite Hotel des Milles Collines, becomes a safe-haven for his family, neighbors and hundreds of other Tutsis. Their lives are in constant danger, but critical thinking by Cheadle’s character keeps his family from becoming victims. Paul becomes responsible for several hundred lives as he welcomes others in the hotel, and relies on the prospect of international intervention. As the film progresses, Paul understands that the UN will no longer provide assistance, forcing him to become......

Words: 304 - Pages: 2

Premium Essay

What Was the Driving Force Behind European Imperialism in Africa

...Andres Lugo Professor William Hendricks March 17, 2015 World Civilizations II Domination of resources The European powers that were in much need for resources during the 1500s through 1800s were Great Britain, France and Germany. During 1500 and 1800 Africa seemed like an impossible feat to conquer because of malaria but this wouldn’t stop the persistence of the leaders of France and Great Britain. The idea of exploring and conquering new land meant more to these leaders because of the motivation to keep their national security strong and keep their economy stronger. These countries would use their remaining resources to look for more disposable ones so that their empires could grow considerably. Great Britain would be dug in the south and spread out through Africa, while the French would have most of the North and West of Africa, but Germany would just conquer a handful of countries before going into the 20th century (263 DBQ). These countries would soon become opponents in one of the greatest territory conquest in the world’s history. Resources is the main point in all three of these powers because Great Britain looked at the world as control, the thought of ruling land to them meant more power. A very important reason these powers would fight for this piece of land is because of the potential wealth it holds but also because the countries would see it that the Africans needed help. Turning the conquerors into saviors and that is always a good feeling when possibly...

Words: 634 - Pages: 3

Free Essay

Imperialism

...Imperialism is a type of advocacy of empire. Its name originated from the Latin word "imperium", meaning to rule over large territories. Imperialism is "a policy of extending a country's power and influence through colonization, use of military force, or other means".[2] Imperialism has greatly shaped the contemporary world.[3] The term imperialism has been applied to Western political and economic dominance in the 19th and 20th centuries, however its precise meaning continues to be debated by scholars. For example, cartographers of the nineteenth century used cartography to further fuel imperialism. As scholar Bassett notes, "Maps were used in various ways to extend European hegemony over foreign and often unknown territory."[4] It is better to use terms such as cultural or economic imperialism to describe some of these less formal types of domination.[5] Some writers, such as Edward Said, use the term more broadly to describe any system of domination and subordination organised with an imperial center and a periphery.[6] From a Marxist perspective, imperialism is a natural feature of a developed capitalist nation state as it matures into monopoly capitalism. In Lenin's work Imperialism, the Highest Stage of Capitalism, he observed that as capitalism matured in the Western world, economies shifted away from manufacturing towards banking, finance, and capital markets, as production was outsourced to the empires' colonies. Lenin concluded that competition between Empire and...

Words: 498 - Pages: 2

Premium Essay

Rwanda

...The United Nations, defines genocide as “Acts committed with the intent to destroy… a national, ethnic, racial or religious group.” In Rwanda, 1994 around one million Tutsi and Hutu opposition members were slaughtered by the extremist Hutu government the Hutu’s; the majority ethnic group in Rwanda. Their aim was to exterminate the minority of Tutsis, whom comprised about 25% of Rwanda’s population, and thus makes it one of the 3 genocides of the 20th century. In order to discuss the Rwandan genocide it is important to analyse the nature of the genocide and investigating the catalytic events that trigged the causing of it, in the first place. This includes the ethnic conflicts between Hutu’s and Tutsis, Western colonisation, propaganda, lack of international intervention and genocide denial. Belgium/Germany colonized Rwanda in 1916, due to the LON. The Belgians divided Rwanda’s unified population into a system of racial classification, mainly consisting of Tutsi’s and Hutu’s. With making the discriminatory system, the Europeans decides to make the Tutsi’s the more superior race, due to the Caucasian-ness of their physical features, when compared to the Hutus. As a result the Tutsi’s were given a more aristocratic appearance in Belgian eyes as they were provided with higher education and job standards while the militia relegated the Hutus to menial tasks. This created resentment towards the Tutsis among the Hutu which was further exacerbated when under Belgian imperial......

Words: 853 - Pages: 4

Premium Essay

European Imperialism

...Americas European settlers faced excruciating occurrences in their attempts to colonize the Americas. There were various challenges that came upon them. They faced uncivilized natives, economic struggles, and starvation. The European colonizers endured a very difficult time trying to stabilize a new home in North America. Harriott believed the natives would soon learn to be civilized through conversion or conquest, if they did not die from disease(1). Disease was a very big controversy for the settlers of the American colonies. They had to dodge the tragic diseases that the natives inflicted upon them. Europeans had tried to shade themselves from these drastic plagues and diseases. Crops were also something that became a problem for the a Europeans. Starvation began to take its toll and they needed to acquire crops. Searching for crops, planting, and harvesting them became a very common task for the European settlers. Economic struggles and poverty also played a great roll for the Europeans. They had dealt with natives making clothes out of deer skins and being half naked(2). A very big issue was the small native towns. The villages were extremely small and only contained ten to twelve houses. The Europeans wanted to drive the Native Americans out of their land and expand from there. They wanted to develop a better life and realized that they couldn't do that with the natives still there. Land expansion, known as Imperialism, became an......

Words: 327 - Pages: 2

Premium Essay

Imperialism

...Driving Force Behind European Imperialism in Africa? During the 19th century, King Leopold II of Belgium compared Africa to a cake. At the Berlin Conference in 1885, seven European nations took slices of Africa for themselves without discussing any details with Africans. From a 21st century perspective, this seems like a selfish thing to have done, so why did Europeans engage in imperialism? Certainly, political factors, cultural causes, and technological advancements were important. But the primary cause was economic. European nations competed to exploit the rich resources of Africa for financial and commercial gain. Much of European imperialism in Africa came as a result of political causes. There were seven different European countries with colonies in Africa (Doc A). This probably created an intense atmosphere of competition. Each of these countries wanted to "keep up" with their neighbors and did not want to be surpassed in riches or glory ... Many in England believed they had to take colonies "or perish." Germany believed it needed to "prove and maintain its newly won position" by taking more colonies (Doc B). National pride created competition among nations that accelerated European movement into Africa. European imperialism in Africa also resulted from cultural causes. One example of this is that at The Berlin Conference, Europeans stated that the "moral and material well being" of the African peoples would be improved by European imperialism (BGE).......

Words: 650 - Pages: 3

Premium Essay

Rwanda Essay

...Final Essay Question The nation of Rwanda has a long and troubled history. It can be considered an experiment of colonization, a slave state to European nations, and even an inferior population living under another nation’s law. Germany and Belgium left their roots in Rwanda and Burundi, another nation developed after the independence the Hutu’s and Tutsi’s won in 1962. The well-known genocide of Rwanda that began in 1994 erupted for many reasons. However, after closely examining this countries fascinating history, one can see that the mass Genocide of 1994 was a result of European influence towards the Hutu and Tutsi people. Looking back to the 14th century, when the Tutsi first arrived in Rwanda one can begin to see how the Hutu-Tutsi relationship began to form. The Tutsi people invaded Rwanda from the southern nation of Ethiopia. The Tutsi people were taller and thinner in appearance than the Hutu. During their entire history of their time in Rwanda, the Tutsi never exceeded a quarter of the population. When the Tutsi warriors first entered Rwanda, they were well outnumbered but still prevailed victorious. By the 15th century, the Tutsi’s had gained complete rule. The Hutu people were given protection and their lives were spared as long as they gave the Tutsi rulers crops and cattle. The political structure that had been established, with Mwami in charge, (Tutsi elitists) allowed this type of deal to be worked out. Mwami ruled over Rwanda for several hundred years and......

Words: 1627 - Pages: 7

Premium Essay

Rwanda

...Rwanda For over a half of a century in Rwandas history, the Tutsi and Hutu tribes fought over power in a ethnic battle fueled by discrimination and harsh persecution. The Tutsi and Hutu tribes were pushed against eachother by foreign imperialistic powers until finally in 1994 a large scale incedent was finally sparked. The blame of this incedent cannot be put unto anyone without looking into the years of hatred that built up to it. Before the European occupation of Rwanda, The Tutsis and Hutus lived coexistent lifestyles. Tutsis and Hutus were separate ethnic groups that lived peacefully. Some Tutsis and Hutus were local chiefs within Rwanda, and at this time there was no organized discrimination or Clashes between the groups. After World War 1, Belgium overtook Rwanda as a colony and established the Tutsis as the natural born leaders of the Nation. The once peaceful lifestyle that existed in Rwanda was no more, As all Tutsis were given Identity cards to distinguish them from the Hutu Subclass. During this period racial tensions mounted as the Hutus were oppressed. During the 1950s, the Tutsi Elite began to strive towards independence and lash out against the centralized belgian rule in Rwanda. In an attempt to silence this movement, the Belgian Government shifted their support towards the Hutu Majority who lacked experience in domination. Soon after, with the Communist nations in the United Nations supporting Rwandan Independence, Clashes between the weaker Tutsis......

Words: 788 - Pages: 4