Showing posts with label Beatrice Munyenyezi. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Beatrice Munyenyezi. Show all posts

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Lexi Herr Should Study Munyenyezi Case Sometime

In a blogpost july 10th Lexi Herr, a doctoral candidate at the Strassler Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies, Clark University, compares Beatrice Munyenyezi to Nazi perpetrators who came to the States after World War II claiming there are similarities. No doubt 'many Holocaust perpetrators lived in the US for decades before their crimes were uncovered. So no, Images of Munyenyezi as a mother, don't prove she is innocent.

And if Lexi Herr had taken the time to follow the procedings in the trial and the mistrial she would have noticed that the defense strategy was not based on 'images of Munyenyezi as a mother' but on the question wether the witnesses against her were telling the truth as her attorneys stated the first day of trial, february 23 2012
"Munyenyezi, who is charged with lying on immigration papers about the role she played in the 1994 genocide, took no part in the violence. Witnesses who claim otherwise are lying - either for self-gain or because of pressure exerted by the Rwandan government. They come from a culture where the government . . . has used the genocide as a tool of oppression,"
 After a mistrial and retrial the Concord Monitor, which did an excellent job covering the proceedings, wrote in a editorial february 28 2013:
'We are not convinced beyond a reasonable doubt that Manchester resident Beatrice Munyenyezi received justice'
'The appeal is a long shot, but it’s one for justice’s sake we hope Munyenyezi wins. Unlike the jurors, we’re not convinced the prosecutors made their case.'
 If Lexi Herr would have wanted to do justice to the proceedings in the Beatrice Munyenyezi case she would have made an attempt to answer some of the serious questions that remain unanswered to this day (see editorial Concord Monitor):

Why did the prosecution use a slate of unbelievable witnesses in the first trial (that ended in a hung jury)

Why did the prosecution return (in retrial) with drastically reduced allegations of Munyenyezi’s actions?

Why did they return (in retrial) with an entirely new cast of Rwandan?

Why, during proceedings and investigations (against her husband and mother-in-law) spanning some 16 years, did her name not come up? 

Why were no charges filed against her during that time?

Why did the Rwandan Ambassador immediately issued a farcical call for Munyenyezi’s summary extradition to Rwanda after the retrial? Concord Monitor argues: 'Doing so would violate her rights under U.S. law and, since she has never been charged with a crime under Rwandan law, she can’t be extradited. It also suggests that politics played a role in the trial’s outcome'
The highly suspicious timing of her arrest, which refocused attention away from Paul Kagame's jailing of opposition party UDF-Inkingi leader Victoire Ingabire and her American Lawyer Peter Erlinder, the assassination attempt on an exiled Rwandan general in South Africa and the subsequent assassination of a Rwandan journalist one day before Munyenyezi's arrest.

None of these questions have been answered sofar.

To answer none of these legitimate questions, while happily comparing her to NAZI's, and suggest Beatrice Munyenyezi's defense was her image as a mother betrays lazyness and insults the intelligence of her readers. 

Is that what is taught at Clark University Strassler Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies?

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Is Boston Bomb Prosecutor Aloke Chakravarty Capable?

The case against Boston Bomb suspects is prosecuted by the assistant US attorneys William Weinreb and Aloke Chakravarty from the Anti-Terrorism and National Security Unit of the US Attorney's Office for District of Massachusetts.

Last month David Voreacos portrayed Aloke Chakravarty as a guy who seeks dialogue. His colleagues, offcourse, had nothing but praise for Chakravarty. Kurt Schwartz, the Massachusetts undersecretary of homeland security and emergency management, claims, for example, 'Al(Aloke Chakravarty) is a talented guy, he’s a committed guy'.

However, if we want to judge wether Aloke Chakravarty is qualified and capable of 'seeking dialogue' as the title of David Voreacos article claims, we should study Chakravarty's involvement and role in the ongoing case against Beatrice Munyenyezi. A controversial case that could deeply damage the reputation of both prosecutors involved. 

From the start the risk of Rwanda's anti-democratic revolutionary regime (rigged elections in 2010, massive scale massacres across the great lakes region (mapping report), direct support of terrorism in the Democratic Republic of Congo today), 'bussing in' false witnesses was real. Capin and Chakravarty knew that this had happened in the case against Kobagaya

Both Aloke Chakravarty and John Capin knew that most of the witnesses from Rwanda in the first trial were unreliable liars. Munyenyezi's defense had demonstrated it. But instead of ending their case there and then, they decided to leave the first slate of false witnesses in Rwanda and get a new bus-load of false witnesses against Beatrice Munyenyezi for a retrial. Cynical and a direct attack on the rule of Law in the United States of America and the rights of every US citizen.

The editorial of the Concord Monitor, february 28th 2013 was crystal clear:
'We are not convinced beyond a reasonable doubt that Manchester resident Beatrice Munyenyezi received justice.'
'the appeal is a long shot, but it’s one for justice’s sake we hope Munyenyezi wins. Unlike the jurors, we’re not convinced the prosecutors made their case.'
In the editorial the Concord Monitor asks several fundamental questions which Aloke Chakravarty and his colleague John Capin have been unable and unwilling to answer during the years long proceedings against Beatrice Munyenyezi: 
'Munyenyezi’s first trial ended in a hung jury because the charges against her were almost comically horrific – shooting a nun in the head as a cheering crowd watched – and the witnesses unbelievable. They included inmates freed in order to come to the United States who, her defense attorneys argued, could have their sentences reduced in exchange for favorable testimony.

That the prosecutors would go to court with such a slate of charges and cast of characters in itself raises questions. That they would return with drastically reduced allegations of Munyenyezi’s actions and an entirely new cast of Rwandan witnesses raises more questions still. Atop those is the big mystery. Munenyezi’s husband and mother-in-law, a Cabinet member, were prominent party officials convicted by an international tribunal of playing an active role in the genocide. If Munyenyezi played a role herself, why, during proceedings and investigations spanning some 16 years, did her name not come up? Why were no charges filed against her?

Last week, Rwanda’s ambassador to the United States immediately issued a farcical call for Munyenyezi’s summary extradition to Rwanda. Doing so would violate her rights under U.S. law and, since she has never been charged with a crime under Rwandan law, she can’t be extradited. It also suggests that politics played a role in the trial’s outcome.'
Aloke Chakravarty has not demonstrated that he is capable of dealing with the highly politicized Munyenyezi case in a satisfactory manner. He has ignored legitimate questions that I and many others have asked over and over in the case against Beatrice Munyenyezi. Aloke Chakravarty was unwilling or incapable of learning from the mistakes made in the case against Kobagaya. He has not delivered justice and failed the United States and it's citizens.

It's  very worrying to see such an individual, who is clearly unqualified, directly involved in the prosecution of the Boston bomb case.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Why Rwanda Day Was Organized In Boston

Retrial in the case against Beatrice Munyenyezi was supposed to start september 10 2012 in Manchester Massachusetts (it didn't). The Rwandan Patriotic Front organized a PR campaign in Massachusetts in september 2012. Paul Kagame visited MIT september 20th & the Rwanda day was organized september 23d.

Consolee Nishimwe wrote a book on the Rwandan genocide, which came out in june 2012, and was used as a PR tool for the ruling regime in Rwanda since. Through PR web the promotional press release was distrubited beginning of september. September 11th the RPF website published an article promoting her book. Consolee Nishimwe attended the RPF event in Boston where she met Louise Mushikiwabo. This week the book is being promoted on Huffington post by Barbara Becker.

Beatrice Munyenyezi's arrest, one day after the assassination of journalist Rugambage in Rwanda, points to a propaganda campaign by the regime that aims to discredit opponents of the regime in the west. The Kobagaya case illustrated how the regime used false accusations to set the stage for Kagame's visits to the US leading up to the 2010 rigged elections. A Kobagaya conviction was supposed to have set the stage for a similar pro-RPF event in Chicago in 2011. Consolee Nishimwe's book is obviously serving the same purpose. This propaganda campaign is coordinated with Friends of Rwanda which is led by the wife of Alexandre Kimenyi.

By organizing the conference in Boston during an ongoing genocide trial in Massachusetts the Rwandan Patriotic Front wanted to use this to it's advantage.

The trial was however rescheduled to a later date.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Jim Yong Kim & Beatrice Munyenyezi

Who to believe, when the African government uses genocide memories as political tool?
Two stories coming out of New Hampshire this weekend that could impact the Rwanda narrative:
U.S. trips in Rwanda prosecution:
"Beatrice Munyenyezi's trial was part of a multimillion-dollar effort by the U.S. Department of Justice and Immigration and Customs Enforcement to prosecute and deport U.S. residents suspected of involvement in Rwanda's 100-day slaughter, 18 years after it ended. Only the government didn't succeed. "
Read the whole article here:
"a growing body of evidence suggested that the Rwanda's government is using genocide allegations to silence exiled political opponents and discourage defense witnesses from coming forward — as Munyenyezi did for her husband."
Tenacious disease-fighter ready to tackle World Bank:
"This is a man who's worked in squatter settlements, slums, villages, cities, prisons, he's done all that," Paul Farmer, a friend of 30 years and fellow co-founder of non-profit group Partners In Health, told Reuters in Rwanda"
 Jason McLure, from New Hampshire, who blogged about tenacious Ethiopian blogger Eskinder Nega in January, contributed to both reports. Dr. Paul Farmer, who also served as UN Deputy Special Envoy to Haiti,  can be seen in this interview on PIH. It's instructive to read this statement just hours after Obama made his announcement:
"He was widely praised by officials in the U.S. and overseas. Former President Bill Clinton, who advocated for Kim during Obama's selection process, said in a statement that the nominee was "an inspired and outstanding choice." Rwandan President Paul Kagame said Kim was "a true friend of Africa" and "a leader who knows what it takes to address poverty."

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Loose Allegations Against Kobagaya, Munyenyezi & Basebya

As one of the very few bloggers who followed the traditional media coverage of both the Kobagaya and the Munyenyezi case in lockstep I can safely say that attorney Ruoff, who represented Munyenyezi, hit the nail on the head when he stated:
"We told her we beat substantial odds by hanging the jury, convictions are far more prevalent."
The article today by Maddie Hanna "Why Did Genocide Case Falter?" underlines this once again. In that article David Simon, a lecturerer in the genocide studies program at Yale University, makes two baseless statements:
"he thinks the Rwandan government is capable of pressuring witnesses overseas, although he believes allegations of that influence are exaggerated."
"even if the government isn't bribing or forcing witnesses - "the kind of things that people allege loosely a lot" - incentives exist for testifying against accused genocide participants"
I take issue with both statements in italics while they neither reflect traditional media coverage nor my own coverage of the Kobagaya, Munyenyezi and Basebya cases.
Coverage of both the Kobagaya and Munyenyezi case by traditional media was certainly not biased in favor of the accused! On the contrary I should add! I am pretty confident David Simon won't be able to point out one example in US press coverage of exageration of Kigali's influence or "loose allegations" to that effect in both trials. Instead media coverage was heavily stacked against both Kobagaya and Munyenyezi.

First, even though Kobagaya was completely acquitted of playing any role in the genocide whatsoever, Lynn Tuhoy wrote february 23 2012, at the start of the Munyenyezi trial (!), that the jury "locked on whether Kobagaya had played a role in the genocide". A false statement or "loose allegation" while:
 "Three jurors told The Associated Press after the verdict that they unanimously rejected allegation Kobagaya participated in the genocide"
Maddie Hanna writes today as if Kurt Kerns makes unverifiable claims concerning the outcome of the jury trial in the Kobagaya case:
"Kobagaya's attorney, Kurt Kerns of Wichita, said jurors told the Associated Press they didn't believe Kobagaya was involved in the genocide, despite witnesses who testified he forced Tutsis to march up a mountain to be killed."
Again, the FACTS are presented in a way that casts doubt on Lazare Kobagaya's involvement in the genocide.

Secondly, when investigating murder, detectives (and the journalists in their slipstream) allways search for a motive. Sofar mainstream media coverage of the Kobagaya, Munyenyezi and Basebya cases has ignored the role these cases played in shaping Kagame's path to election rigging in 2010. Not one article in mainstream media on any of these cases mentions this easily verifiable FACT (a fact that sets these cases apart from other genocide-related cases).

David Simon's claims that allegations against the current regime in Kigali of pressuring witnesses are "spread loosely around alot" or "exagerated" are not only incorrect, it's actually the other way around. In reality these allegations were mostly ignored or downplayed in coverage by mainstream media of these three cases and sofar I am the only source that has pointed to the role these cases played in shaping Kagame's path to election rigging in 2010. 

Friday, March 16, 2012

Does Occampo Have A PR Team?

What was Occampo thinking yesterday when he claimed that the Lubango ruling "makes the world less primitive"? PR-wise it was one of the dumbest phrases I have heard in a long time. Those threatened by the Lubango ruling in east-Africa are pushing the narrative that the ICC is only prosecuting Africans. Even Occampo must be aware of that. PR firms and pr consultants working for Kigali, Kampala and the Occampo six should be thanking Occampo on their bare knees. He just made their life a little easier.
Just a little easier, I must add. In the meantime Tony Gambino linked Paul Kagame directly to Lubango's buddy Bosco Ntaganda which triggered immediate reaction by Kigali's pr team. At the same time the two pronged pr-strategy by Kigali is further weakened by the mistrial in the case against Munyenyezi in New Hamshire. 

In the end great lakes political and diplomatic dynamics is best summarized by the often quoted phrase:
Lokuta eyaka na ascenseur, kasi vérité eyei na escalier mpe ekomi - Koffi Olomide.
In the end PR can only get you sofar.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Will Dutch Court Ignore Lessons From Kobagaya & Munyenyezi Trials?

 The Kobagaya and Munyenyezi trials hold lessons for other cases in the US and beyond.

In her written statement on behalf of  the federal public and community defenders before the United States sentencing commission public hearing on human rights offenses March 14 2012 Melanie Morgan states:
"As one court noted in connection with a case (Beatrice Munyenyezi case) that is currently on trial in New Hampshire:

Critical witnesses for the government and defendant reside in Rwanda, and counsel for both sides must necessarily travel to Rwanda to investigate, marshal evidence, and make arrangements for witnesses to come to the United States to testify.... Language barriers, differences in customs, and international relations issues all add other complexities that must be navigated. Discovery and relevant investigatory materials are voluminous."
Prosecution and defense must investigate is what the court in New Hampshire in the Beatrice Munyenyezi case noted. The Dutch prosecutors in the case against Yvonne Basebya have travelled to Rwanda and published an article about it on RNW, what about the defense? Has the defense in that case been denied the funds to investigate, as prosecutor Hester van Bruggen and her colleagues wanted?
The Kobagaya, Munyenyezi and Basebya cases played an important role in Paul Kagame's PR abroad in the months leading up to the 2010 elections in Rwanda. Nobody can deny that. The outcome in Kansas and New Hampshire strenghten the perception that these were not just convenient coincidences, but a concerted propaganda effort by the regime in Kigali.
The valuable lessons from both cases are multiple! The context of convenient PR combined with the outcomes in Kansas and New Hampshire will impact the dynamics of the Basebya case, no doubt about it.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Thomas Brian Anderson Expert On Rwanda?

Dan Tuhoy wrote an article on the Beatrice Munyenyezi case june 29 2010 in which we read how Thomas Brian Anderson, special agent with Immigration and Customs Enforcement in Boston, who apparently "flagged potential danger in his request for a warrant" claims:
"I have reason to believe, that people who were active participants in the Rwandan genocide were themselves Hutu extremists and that they have maintained an active diaspora throughout the world in hope of returning to Rwanda for the purpose of overthrowing the current government and re-instituting the policy of genocide. To complete the work of killing every last tutsi"
Sofar in the case against Beatrice Munyenyezi we have not seen any of the evidence this incompetent "special agent" claimed to have back in 2010. Who is this Thomas Brian Anderson "special agent with immigration and custom enforcement"?
The findings in the case sofar are sufficient to conclude that Thomas Brian Anderson was talking nonsense. Based on what did he made these allegations? Keith Harmon Snow wrote an article on this guy back in 2010.

Venerande Uwitekazana: If You Would Not Love A Sister-In-Law, Who Would You Love?

Prosecutor Aloke Chakravarty who thinks of himself as someone who stands up for "the little guy" called Beatrice Munyenyezi in his closing arguments:
"an arrogant, powerful woman with a powerful family."
On the last day of the Beatrice Munyenyezi trial prosecuting prosecutor Aloke Chakravarty couldn't hide his frustration that four of Beatrice Munyenyezi's family members, two of which are tutsis, testified in her favor.
The most beautiful exchange in this trial came a day earlier when prosecutor Aloke Chakravarty asked one of these four witnesses, Misses Uwitekazana, who previously testified against her own son:
"Family is more important in Rwanda than ethnicity, yes? And Beatrice is your family, isn't she?"
Instead of answering directly, Misses Venerande Uwitekazana answered with the sentence that could well decide this case:
"If you would not love a sister-in-law, who would you love?"

Aloke Chakravarty must have felt really akward to have been put checkmate by Venerande Uwitekazana who instead asked him about his relationship to his family.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

How Are Lazare Kobagaya And Yvonne Basebya Cases Related?

Both the acquittal of Lazare Kobagaya in may and the recent ICTR ruling to delay the transfer of Uwinkindi to Rwanda "until a suitable monitoring mechanism is established to oversee his trial" should make clear that it's at this stage premature to claim, as Wolfgang Thome did two weeks ago, that:
"Rwanda has restored an independent judiciary"
What implications does the outcome of the Lazare Kobagaya case have for ICTR transfers to Rwanda and other rulings? What implications does it have for Rwanda genocide related trials in the Netherlands and elsewhere? What lessons can prosecutors and politicians from the countries and institutions involved, Rwanda included, learn from the Lazare Kobagaya case? Are Yvonne Basebya, read RNW report on the last developments in this case, and Beatrice Munyenyezi part of a propaganda campaign by the current regime in Kigali in which Lazare Kobagaya played a central role?

Brainstorming on these questions I wrote my blogpost in Dutch: Hester van Bruggen Framing Yvonne Basebya, translated below:

The Lazare Kobagaya case has taught us how easily the current regime in Kigali was able to instrumentalize US prosecutors to advance their own cause. False witnesses and propaganda were employed to frame Lazare Kobagaya as a bloodthirsty extremist hutu (used in PR effort during Paul Kagame's visit to US ahead of 2010 Presidential elections). Under the motto: "If we throw enough mud, some of it will stick". And that tactic worked pretty good. Both prosecutors and  the State Department's War Crimes Chieff Stephen Rapp loved playing their part in this comedy. To the jury of American citizens this was a bridge too far, thank God!

The question in the Yvonne Basebya case is offcourse wether Dutch officers of justice will learn anything from the mistakes made by US Justice and State Department in the Lazare Kobagaya Case. Signs are, on the contrary, pointing in the opposite direction. In the interest of the much priased development model "Rwanda" and to not hurt the "Beijing consensus" our Dutch Ambassador Frans Makken made sure Paul Kagame's "election victory" still had some radiance. 
The Netherlands claims that Rwanda's justice system is a success. En therefore the Dutch representative at the European Court said in october 2010:
" Rwanda has over the years made substantial and fundamental progress in furthering the rule of law"
Yvonne Basebya's defense declared march 9 2011 in court that it is convinced that the Dutch prosecutors in this case are attempting to get Yvonne Basebya behind bars "at all cost" and are conducting themselves in a way that is contrary to Law and spirit of our Dutch criminal justice system.

In the interview of january 2012 Prosecutor Hester van Bruggen praises the Rwandan government for it's good cooperation and emphasizes the importance of local research in Rwanda to asess the credibility of her witnesses. Undoubtedly two central elements of her strategy to win the case. She states for example in that interview:
"It would be very usefull if judges would take a look for themselves. That holds true for us at least just as much. Take Rwanda: You got to have stood on those hills to decide what you can see from hill A on hill B. It helps in assessing the credibility of the declarations of the witnesses. And it explains in large part the joy Van Bruggen finds in her work. The more obstacles, the more challenging the task."
A remarkable statement considering the fact that she and her colleagues have resisted to even a small budget for research by the defense of Yvonne Basebya (as her lawyer Victor Koppe indicated on the pro-forma court hearing march 9th 2011). Kurt Kerns has had to do research in several African countries in order to eventually get his client Lazare Kobagay fully acquitted. It therefore is astonishing how Hester van Bruggen, here in this interview, deploys local research to increase the credibility of her own judgment capabilities while at the same time sabotaging or blocking research by the other party.

From the way Hester van Bruggen talks about Rwanda, in the interview, it doesn't appear that she has learned from the Lazare Kobagaya case. Shortly after Kobagaya was acquitted Ann Garrison, journalist from San Francisco, asked Kurt kerns, one of the lawyers in the case: "what do you think the international implications of this case are?". To which he answered:
"Well, I think maybe before you spend a couple of million dollars trying to prosecute someone, you really need to do a factual investigation. If the allegations are coming out of a country that has so many lies being perpetrated out of it, like Rwanda, you really need to do an independent investigation to see if you're really getting a true and accurate investigation or if you're really just getting a politically motivated accusation. So often now, at least right now in Rwanda, so many of the accusations coming out of that country are sadly, politically based."
Ignoring this specific Rwandan context, which we know all to well from the Lazare Kobagaya case equals squandering taxpayers money and framing Yvonne Basebya.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Munyenyezi Case: To A Carpenter Everything Looks Like A Nail

The Concord Monitor Coverage of the Munyenyezi trial went into high gear february 21 with the article "complex trial set to begin". An article that mischaracterized the outcome of the Lazare Kobagaya trial which, for propaganda reasons, was dubbed "the first genocide trial in the US". A grave error which was repeated in the following article february 23 "jury chosen for genocide case"!

Contrary to claims by Lynn Tuohy, Lazare Kobagaya's trial did not end in a "hung jury" and did not "locked on whether he played a role in the genocide". (Lynn Tuohy wrote the AP press release that messed up the facts concerning the outcome of the landmark ruling in the Lazare Kobagaya trial) . Lazare Kobagaya was acquitted of having played any role in the genocide whatsoever.

Ann Garrison, journalist in San Francisco, asked Kobagaya's lawyer Kurt Kerns august 27 2011 "What do you think the international implications of this case are?", his answer was:
"Well, I think maybe before you spend a couple of million dollars trying to prosecute someone, you really need to do a factual investigation. If the allegations are coming out of a country that has so many lies being perpetrated out of it, like Rwanda, you really need to do an independent investigation to see if you're really getting a true and accurate investigation or if you're really just getting a politically motivated accusation. So often now, at least right now in Rwanda, so many of the accusations coming out of that country are sadly, politically based."
Dan Gorenstein was in court the first day of the Munyenyezi trial in Concord New Hampshire february 23 2012 and confirms that this case is "about lies, both sides are accusing the other of lying". According to Concord Monitor's staffer Maddie Hanna, Munyenyezi's attorneys stated february 23, the first day of trial:
"Munyenyezi, who is charged with lying on immigration papers about the role she played in the 1994 genocide, took no part in the violence. Witnesses who claim otherwise are lying - either for self-gain or because of pressure exerted by the Rwandan government. They come from a culture where the government . . . has used the genocide as a tool of oppression,"
Today's blogpost on the Munyenyezi trial by Sarah E. Brown, a researcher of women genocide perpetrators in Rwanda and Congo is a good illustration of the proverb:
"to a carpenter everything in the world looks like a nail"
On twitter yesterday she allready claimed the defense avoided the word "genocide" in it's opening remarks:
Shameful - defense team avoids the word . In opening remarks, used words like "situation" "war" and "RPF invasion"...
An easily verifiable falsehood. The defense used the word genocide several times in it's opening remarks, as I have demonstrated above. Her attempt to twist the facts continues today claiming:
"Munyenyezi’s wayward defense strategy mistakenly hinges on her gender and her status as a mother to prove her innocence."
This again is incorrect. The case, as Dan Gorenstein and Maddie Hanna have reported (see above), hinges on the credibility of the witnesses. In light of what we learned from the Kobagaya case extreme caution is warranted.

But I would add one other element: motive. As pointed out at the top, the Lazare Kobagaya case was used in the crucial fase of Paul Kagame's RPF PR effort the day he arrived at the Tribeca festival in New York. Paul Kagame's PR directed at a US audience was an essential element in his election campaign strategy.

Beatrice Munyenyezi was arrested june 25 2010, a week after the assassination attempt in South Africa on General Kayumba Nyamwasa's life and one day after the assassination of Rwandan journalist Jean-Léonard Rugambage in Kigali. In light of what we now know (through the Kobagaya case) the significance of the timing of Munyenyezi's arrest june 25 2010 should not be overlooked.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Beatrice Munyenyezi's Trial In Proper Context

On tuesday April 12th 2010 Paul Kagame in a speech in the Rwandan parliament, called those officials (ex-army chiefs Lt. Gen. Kayumba Nyamwasa, Col. Patrick Karegeya) who fled the country:  “[the waste] being excreted, it means the country has sieved.” April 21 2010 Victoire Ingabire was arrested and presented to the prosecutor to let her know she was charged with genocide ideology, divisionism and collaboration with a terrorist group, the FDLR. Jared Cohen, member of Clinton's policy planning staff starts #rememberrwanda campaign on twitter on day of Victoire Ingabire's arrest. April 22 2010 Victoire Ingabire was placed under house arrest in Kigali.
April 25th 2010 in a speech in Rwanda's Parliament Paul Kagame stated he "would crush opponents like flies with a hammer,” which, was a direct threat to critics and dissidents abroad and at home.

April 27th 2010, a week after his #rememberrwanda campaign on twitter, Jared Cohen, member of Clinton's policy planning staff, met Paul Kagame in New York at the Tribeca festival. One day later, April 28th we could read in The New Times, Kagame's propaganda newspaper, the following headline "First Genocide Trial Underway in the U.S.". This first genocide trial, the case against Lazare Kobagaya, turned out (over a year later) to be part of Paul Kagame's propaganda campaign against critics. Lazare Kobagaya's name was cleared. Paul Kagame's regime had manipulated the US justice system for propaganda purposes.
Prosecutor John Capin in the case against Beatrice Munyenyezi claimed this week:
"the evidence would leave the jury with no doubt that Munyenyezi "acted enthusiastically" in the events of the genocide and lied about it to obtain citizenship."
Capin also claimed yesterday that Esperance Kayenge was a major witness.The first time Esperance Kayenge, the first witness, mentioned Munyenyezi's name was in March 2011 when questioned by US investigators. However, Esperance contradicted herself several times and reading Lynn Tuchy's report on Kayenge's testimony you can allmost hear the smacking sound. Not a testimony which justifies the above ridiculously "enthusiastic" statement by prosecutor Capin. So, based on what evidence was Beatrice Munyenyezi arrested in june 2010?

Defense attorney Howard focused most of his attention less on Kayenge and more on those who are serving life sentences for killing during the genocide and can have their sentences reduced to 20 years if they identify other participants: "Do the math, the genocide took place 17 years ago. Their motive to identify someone is they get out in just three more years".
June 25 2010 Munyenyezi was arrested:
"There were tons of cruisers, lots of unmarked cars lining the driveway," said neighbor Robin Leonard. "It was kind of crazy. They were banging on the door next door trying to get in."
The events surrounding Munyenyezi's arrest are in chronological order:
[Munyenyezi's arrest june 25 2010]
The day of the funeral of Andre Kagwa Rwisereka Paul Kagame makes the following statement:
"My job has not been to create an opposition, my job is to create the environment where legitimate things can happen."
That statement sums up Paul Kagame's election campaign. The timing of the events are clearly linked to a strategy of propaganda (false accusations abroad), intimidation (use assassinations to intimidate population ahead of polls) and justifying killings after the fact (by claiming the right to assassinate those branded terrorists). 

The central question in the Munyenyezi case is why she was arrested june 25 2010, a date that helped Paul Kagame divert attention from RPF assasinations of journalist Rugambage and failed assassination attempt on Nyamwasa in South Africa. What information triggered her arrest , when and how did the prosecutor get this information?

If Munyenyezi's defense can establish that Kigali triggered Munyenyezi's arrest around 24/25 june, it would directly link Paul Kagame to the murder of  Jean-Leonard Rugambage.

Refugee resettlement watch follows this trial as well.

@bradycarlson and @dgorensteinnhpr discussed the case on radio several days ago.