By Erasme Rugemintwaza
It is an open secret that it is Rwanda which made the foray into the DRC under the label of M23. The recruitments and training of new young combatants which are being carried out in Rwanda, in full view of everyone, justify this incursion and even more the Rwandan dream: the annexation of eastern DRC. But the DRC seems to be obsessed with Rwanda’s diplomatic maneuvers which are nothing but hypnotizing or bewitching caresses that are given to the animal before slaughtering it!
Who attacked the DRC from November 7 to 8, 2021
The night of November 7 to 8 left the whole world in wondering. Who really attacked the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC)? Who wanted to test the capability or military capacity of the FARDC to respond?
Kinshasa and Kigali have launched a media war on the incursion.
In a press release made public on Tuesday, November 9, 2021, the Rwandan Ministry of Defense indicated that its army was not involved in the attack of the March 23 Movement (M23), deplored the night from Sunday to Monday. November 8 in several villages of the Jomba group, in the territory of Rutshuru in North Kivu.
“The Rwandan Defense Forces do not participate in or support any activity of the ex-armed group M23″, indicates the Ministry of Defense, which adds that it has been reported that an armed group suspected of being former M23 rebels, entered the DRC on Sunday evening from Ugandan territory where he is based”, and attacked and occupied the villages of Chanzu and Runyoni. While officials of the Congolese army affirmed that these M23, after their attack, returned to Rwanda “from where they came”, the Rwandan Ministry of Defense affirms in reaction, that “the ex-M23 group in question did not seek refuge in Rwanda when it retired from the DRC in 2013, but is based in Uganda, where the attack originated, and where the armed group withdrew.
Here Rwanda not only denies its responsibility for the attack but points the finger, with certainty its brother-enemy Uganda, to be the rear base of the M23. But one may wonder, even if a large part of the M23 took refuge in Uganda, how does Rwanda reject the refuge of the M23 on its soil? We know, in fact, that there is a part, however tiny, that was received in Rwanda, the group is housed in the east of the country in the District of Ngoma. And this presence of the M23 has often been raised by Rwanda in regional meetings. If we currently visit the camp that the population of the small town of Kibungo in Ngoma District, Eastern Province had called “M23”, it is now completely empty. Where have they gone, these more or less 200 young M23 with Colonel Prince and their Chief Runiga? Volatilized in nature or in training somewhere? In addition to this, Rwanda is the first suspect of this attack simply because it lodges several Congolese Tutsis in their three respective groups: more than 35,000 Congolese Tutsi refugees for more than 27 years, in the camps of Mahama (Kirehe Eastern Province) and Kiziba (Karongi Western Province); there are also the brothers and sisters of these former ones who live like ordinary Rwandan citizens with Rwandan identity cards, and who also have many privileges in the Rwandan civil service. The Ministries are filled with these Tutsis from DRC without forgetting the decentralized entities such as Districts, Sectors and Cells; the third group which is the right arm which carries out Kagame’s macabre orders is indeed the army but especially the Republican Guard which is dominated by the Rwandan-Congolese Tutsis known as Bagogwe. There are also the top Bagogwe officers who do not hide the nostalgia for the Congolese meadows and pastures of Masisi which saw them born and grow. We know the pugnacity of Colonel Jomba who went, one day, to celebrate the victory of Rwanda over Uganda in the DRC in 2000.
Eastern DRC was for a time referred to as Rwanda B. This endless dream of the regime of the Conqueror of Kigali to annex the east of DRC is currently temporarily hampered by the presence of the United Nations Organization Mission to the Stabilization of Peace in the Democratic Republic of Congo (MONUSCO). In a word, as Uganda was for the Rwanda of General Habyarimana, Rwanda is in a thousand ways the gravedigger of any Congolese regime that will not submit to the whims of the last African Emperor, Paul Kagame.
Thus Kigali considers that any statement, according to which the ex-armed group M23 originates or has withdrawn in Rwanda, will be regarded as “propaganda” aimed at undermining the “good relations” between Rwanda and the DRC.
As a reminder, the Armed Forces of the DRC have, in a press release, accused the M23 of having attacked their positions of Chanzu and Runyonyi, since the night of November 7, 2021. The clashes lasted until the early evening of the following day, November 08, 2021. But M23 quickly denied having carried out the attack.
In a statement signed by Bertrand Bisimwa, the political leader of the M23 based in Uganda, this movement denied the Congolese army’s accusation that it was behind the attack on the villages of Chanzu and Runyonyi, in the Rutshuru territory, North Kivu. He also insisted that for more than a year it had been engaged in talks with the Congolese government and that its delegates had stayed in Kinshasa. These exchanges with the administration of President Felix Tshisekedi have even been described as “very fruitful”. These discussions were initiated after the signing, in October 2019, of the roadmap providing, among other things, for the repatriation of former M23 combatants installed in Rwanda.
Despite this mediatic war some sources and some experts on military issues have cited Rwanda and its army in the clashes between the M23 rebels and the Armed Forces of the Democratic Republic of Congo. But these allegations were dismissed out of hand by a Rwandan army statement. The RDF (Rwandese Defense Force) denying and denouncing the assertions which aimed, according to the press release, to undermine its relations with the DRC. In other words, Rwanda, through the RDF, wished to reaffirm its attachment to its neighbor, for a common fight against cross-border insecurity and terrorism.
Diplomatic enthusiasm: Kagame as a true prince of Machiavelli infiltrates Kinshasa
We can remind that Kigali-Kinshasa relations were cold in the time of Kabila Son. But at the dawn of the power of Felix Tshisekedi, Paul Kagame made a solemn step to approach the DRC. His presence at Etienne Tshisekedi’s funeral will help to seal the reconciliation between Kigali and Kinshasa. Indeed, on May 31, 2019, Rwandan President Paul Kagame had specially made the trip to Kinshasa to participate in the funeral of old Etienne Tshisekedi. The same weekend, Paul Kagame also took part in a tripartite summit with his Congolese and Angolan counterparts João Lourenço. We learned that at this summit, the ex-M23 issue was then put on the table of discussions at the initiative of Rwanda. How then can Kigali dare to refuse the presence of the M23 on Rwandan soil by rejecting this to Uganda, when the issue was its primary concern in regional summits?
But Kagame will go further and despite a growing anti-Kagame of the Congolese, the insults he once proffered to the Congolese people regarding the massacres of the Congolese by his army of yesteryear, the Rwandan Patriotic Army, according to the Mapping Report, despite the reports of the UN which put Kigali at the crossroads of the smuggling of minerals from the DRC, Paul Kagame persevered and won the contracts with Felix Tshisekedi.
The Congolese may have shouted criminal, looter, but Kagame turned a deaf ear and continued without flinching.
While the whole world was still wondering what Kigali wants with the Rutshuru incursion, Kigali irreversibly continued its maneuvers to bewitch Kinshasa: To the surprise of the whole world Kagame became humanitarian and proposed the construction of a modern village of 30 millions of US Dollars in the city of Goma for the victims of the volcanic eruption. It was an uproar in the DRC.
According to the opinion of Congolese activists grouped in the Movement of Indignants of the Security Situation in the Democratic Republic of Congo (Miss-DRC), these “Donation of construction of Kagame to the Congolese! Donation of Museveni infrastructure to the Congolese! These executioners became protectors to better shelter and kill their victims. What humiliation and mockery for the victims? A shame for the Republic! “, writes Nicole Kavira, president of Miss-DRC …
In their messages, these activists also threaten to hold the Congolese authorities responsible for the various massacres of the population, if they accept this proposal from the Rwandan president. “If the Congolese government accepts that this criminal from Kigali comes to build his shelters for the Congolese in Kivu, we will officially accuse the Congolese authorities of being responsible for the killings of their own population,” writes the coordinator of Miss-RDC.
It should be reminded that the Rwandan President, Paul Kagame, has made a commitment to his Congolese counterpart, Félix-Antoine Tshisekedi, to offer “special assistance” to those affected by the eruption of the Nyiragongo volcano in the North Kivu. According to sources, this donation consists of the construction of a “modern village” estimated at thirty million US dollars. According to these sources, this project should be carried out by the soldiers of the Rwandan army.
A Trojan horse or Rwandan CND
This gift from Kagame to Tshisekedi is reminiscent of the Greeks with their Trojan horse, and the adage is that you have to fear the Greeks even if they give gifts, referring to this famous gift that brings down the city of Trojan which was impregnable during hundred years. This may sound mythical, but it was only 28 years ago that Kagame deceived Habyarimana in the same way. With the Arusha Peace Agreements between Kagame and Habyarimana, the RPF-Inkotanyi demanded the Headquarters of the Rwandan Parliament called the National Council for Development (CND) to house a battalion of 600 elements of pretection of RPF-Inkotanyi politicians in the process of peace; a building dominating at the same time the International Airport Grégoire Kayibanda, currently Kanombe, the Camp GP (Presidential Guard) and Village Urugwiro, the presidency. The first imposition that the RPF-Inkotanyi made was to obtain supplies of everything outside Kigali, more precisely in Murindi of Byumba, its military base. The convoy should not be subject to any checks. It was an official mean of bringing into Kigali more than three thousand soldiers who should attack Kigali while awaiting reinforcements from Murindi 70 km from Kigali. The plan worked wonderfully with the complicity of General Roméo Dallaire, commander of the United Nations Assistance Mission for Rwanda (UNAMIR).
How then can the DRC accept the official presence of the RDF in Goma, a city that the Tutsi rebel movements created by Kigali have always dreamed of taking to make it the stronghold of their war of cessation of Kivu? Whether it was the CNDP or the M23, both were forcibly driven out and returned to Rwanda. This time, Rwanda wants to end this cycle and help them once for all by building a military camp for them. The village is a military camp to take GOMA and where to declare the cessation of Kivu. Kivu will then be able to declare itself an independent state and defend its territory with the help of whomever it wants, in the foreground Rwanda.