Travel Log 7: “Global Responsibility” Part 1 by Bryan Riemer. Cork, Ireland

The editorial cartoon I have decided to use to depict the Rwandan genocide is shown below. In this cartoon there are six different controversial topics that were taking place in 1994. The events consist of Waco Texas, Tonya Harding, Bobbitt Trial, Michael Jackson, O.J Simpson and Rwanda. The first five events have a large media presence whereas Rwanda has only one tourist taking a picture of bones. Trwandan-genocidehat makes me assume that this tourist has traveled to Rwanda after the genocide and is being a mass tourist. The message the illustrator is trying to get across is that people are more interested in celebrity scandals (O.J. Simpson) and potentially true accusations (Michael Jackson) rather than hundreds of thousands of people in Africa getting killed. Although the cartoon depicts Rwanda after the genocide, the media presence during the genocide was not focused on the genocide but more on getting non-Rwandans home safe. The human rights violation depicted in this cartoon states, “no one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment” (Article 5 UDHR). This right was not only violated by the genocide but by five out of the six events that took place.

The Rwandan genocide is clearly the largest violation out of the five events and according to General Romeo Dallaire there were multiple times where it could have been prevented. The UN should have been protecting this right for the people of Rwanda but instead sent only 450 troops to assess the situation. General Dallaire had contacted the UN on many occasions asking for more troops but was denied every time. The one instance where the UN did send reinforcements was when they secured any non-Rwandan citizens. Right after all of the citizens were safe they left the country. Dallaire mentioned that if even one of the troops had took charge and tried to help end the war then it could have been over in two days. The most recent violation of article 5 would be the situation happening in Syria with ISIS. Unlike Rwanda, people are invested in what is happening with ISIS. This is because European countries are taking in refugees which is affecting the entire world. This situation has been getting worse and the UN is trying there best to resolve it. Global treatment of violating this right has changed drastically since Rwanda because people are terrified of it happening to them so the UN made the slogan, never again.


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