Yolande Mukagasana Foundation condemns Judi Rever hiding behind ‘freedom of expression’ to trivialize genocide

On 19 January 2021 at 11:12

Yolande Mukagasana, an author and researcher on the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi has condemned acts and speeches by a Canadian journalist, Judi Rever who recently featured in a talk show on Radio Canada during which she undermined genocide history asserting that there was ‘double genocide’ in Rwanda.

The journalist also said that RPF Inkotanyi soldiers shot the airplane of former President of Rwanda, Habyarimana Juvenal which is considered a biased argument not informed by research.

Through her foundation dubbed ‘Yolande Mukagasana’ , she has written a letter protesting acts of Judi Rever who tends to use ‘freedom of expression’ for activities that might be likened with propaganda that characterized the media before and during the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi.

“Freedom of expression” was used as a weapon to expedite the 1994 genocide against Tutsi in Rwanda. Today, Judi Rever uses this same concept to deny the genocide.

In the years leading to 1994, media outlets and tabloids belonging to to Hutu extremists used the noble concept of ‘Freedom of Expression’ as a weapon while the world stood idly by and watched it happen.

The infamous Radio Télévision Libre des Mille Collines (RTLM), the Kangura newspaper which published the ten Hutu Commandments, and many others were used by these extremist groups.

In the aftermath of the genocide, a number of journalists were found guilty of genocide extremism related crimes by the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR). The sentenced media practitioners included a foreign journalist, George Ruggiu, condemned to 12 years in prison.

Through an open letter, Yolande Mukagasana Foundation has explained that there should be no excuse for people lagging behind freedom of expression to undermine genocide.

“Today, we cannot, in no way, tolerate revisionists and genocide deniers who use freedom of expression as an excuse to manipulate historical facts by, for instance, labeling Rwanda’s liberation movement as criminals. We cannot allow 26 years of continuous lies and torture imposed on genocide survivors to go unchecked and unchallenged. Most of their manipulation and denialism amount to criminal acts that deserve to be condemned and in several cases, tried,” reads part of the letter.
The letter further states the journalist Rever didn’t prove researched evidences whereby her witnesses are deemed spurious.

The foundation recalled that the genocide against the Hutus which would have been committed by the Tutsi was announced for the first time in an article written by “l’Association des Femmes Parlementaires pour la Défense des Droits de la Mère et de l’Enfant” in collaboration with Dr. Mugesera Léon. The article, titled “The Whole Truth About the October 1990 Rwanda War” was published in February 1991.

"The war of the RPF is to restore the dictatorship of the extremism of the minority Tutsi based on a genocide, the extermination of the Hutu majority,” the article reads in part.

The authors of this article, starting with Dr. Léon Mugesera, who was sentenced to life imprisonment played a role during the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi.

The planners of the genocide against the Tutsi devised this ideology to make Hutus fear and hate Tutsis. They then used state institutions to turn fear and hatred into the myriad acts of hunting, rape and massacres that made up the Genocide against Tutsi.

In his book “When Victims Become Killers”, Professor Mahmood Mamdani, scholar and author of several books, points out that “Most genocides have been rationalized, mobilized, organized, explained as preventive actions; do to them what they will do to you before they do it to you. ”

Judi Rever supports this conspiracy theory announced by Professor Mahmood Mamdani.

Based on such acts, Yolande Mukagasana Foundation has called for action to condemn the Canadian journalist.

“The genocide against the Tutsi was not a crime by ignorant people. It was planned and coordinated by intellectuals, politicians, and the military. Journalists contributed to it, such as Judi Rever and Stéphan Bureau, who gave it a platform by disseminating its insults and denialism without qualms, shame or scruples,” reads the letter.

The foundation also calls on Canada, through its ambassador to Rwanda to ‘make a comment on what we denounce with anger and indignation and tell us if as a country, they support genocide denial as promoted by some Canadian journalists’.

“In Canada, the country of Judi Rever and Stéphan Bureau, no one can dare claim that the Jews disguised themselves as Nazis and murdered their own families. No one would have the heart to question the testimonies of Holocaust survivors by accusing them of disseminating an "official version of history which would suit the State of Israel." Why would this be allowed when it comes to the history of Rwanda? How can Canada allow this? We need to understand, but don’t come and tell us that it is freedom of expression because we know it from having lived in Rwanda in 1994,”reads the letter.

The Yolande Mukagasana Foundation is an independent foundation promoting research on the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi. Among its various objectives is, in the very first line, the fight against revisionism and genocide denial, as well as a determined fight against the genocidal ideology which is hidden under these multiple acts of denial.

“Consequently, we strongly condemn both Radio Canada for having offered a platform for evil, and the shameful remarks that deny and trivialize the genocide made by Judi Rever and Stéphan Bureau: their comments, hidden behind the curtain of ‘freedom of expression’, insult the memory of genocide survivors and all Rwandans of good will,” concludes the letter.

Yolande Mukagasana is an author and researcher on the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi.
Canadian journalist, Judi Rever who recently featured in a talk show on Radio Canada during which she undermined genocide history.