• President Obama Quote

    And just as we identify with the victims, it's also important for us I think to remember that the perpetrators of such evil were human, as well, and that we have to guard against cruelty in ourselves. -President Obama after his speech Buchenwald concentration camp

Hamites and Hebrews: problems in “Judaizing” the Rwandan genocide

This is an article by William Miles that went right over my head the first read. I am fairly well versed in the Christian Bible and know the stories pretty well but the history that Miles brings up and the connections to lineage was so complex that I had to read it a few times to even slightly grasp it. One of the main points he makes is that the Jewish people and the Tutsis were seen as the two races that thought of themselves as the chosen race in their respective cultures and the rest of the region resented them for that. The Jewish side is simply that Jesus was a Jew and therefore they are the chosen race. the Tutsis story goes back to Genesis and the story of Noah. He denounces his son Ham (hint hint to Hamites). There is a ton of more background on this but I wont go into the tedious detail. The point is the two groups that were subjected to genocidal acts thought of themselves and others did the same, as the chosen ones by God. Even though I got through this there were more questions arisen in the article such as “what kind of ‘jews’ are the Tutsis then?”. I do not know how to answer that because I have not looked at the genocide as comparing the religions as much as other factors. I am struggling through this to try and make some more connections but I have not yet. Regardless, the ending of this article is quite correct I think: “it is just as important that theology be harnessed in ways that build, rather than degrade, inter-ethnic confidence.”

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2 Responses

  1. You say, “the two groups [the Jewish and the Tutsis] that were subjected to genocidal acts thought of themselves and others did the same, as the chosen ones by God.” Do you think that being in this situation (chosen by God) always leads to genocidal acts? Like the Nazi’s thought that they were the superior race.

    • I do not think that it always leads to genocide. There is no reason for any race to think of themselves as chosen people and even if they do that does not justify a genocide. The Nazis were did not think of themselves as superior that was constructed through propaganda. I would say that the Nazi regime was a bit frightened by the Jewish people’s intelligence not vice versa.

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