To Orwell Today,
Long time, hope you are well. Now I would like to share this history with your readers: 15 YEARS OF RPF'S LIBERATION:
How It Happened
On October 2nd 1990 people in North West Tanzania woke up to sounds of gunfire, mortars and machine guns. The war had started in the neighbouring country of Rwanda. Radio Rwanda started informing people that their country had been attacked by Nyangarwanda (Rwanda haters) from Uganda. The gunfire continued till evening. When we tuned in BBC and their reporter in Kampala, Hussein Abdu Hassan announced formally that Rwandan soldiers in the NRA had deserted the army led by Maj Gen. Fred Rwigyema to go home. Vice President Al Haji Kigongo condemned the desertion and attack.
On the following day, we tuned in to the BBC to monitor the proceedings of the war after a full day of gunfire. Hussein Abdu Hassan said: "I went to Kagitumba, the rebel headquarters and found Major Peter Baingana, the deputy commander". Dr Baingana explained that they had captured Gabiro Barracks. He said the war was going on well and soon they were targeting Nyagatare.
So, next, will continue as I monitored the war...
RPF's top commanders at Kagitumba who were often interviewed by Hussein Abdi Hassan of BBC Swahili Service also included Major Chris Bunyenyezi and Capatain Sam Byaruhanga. They all spoke good Swahili.
Now, after days of fighting, Zaire and France sent reinforcements to the embattled Kigali government. Zaire sent 500 commandos, while France said it was sending ammunition and some soldiers to guide key installations. Hussein travelled to Kagitumba and met Major Bunyenyezi. Major Bunyenyezi spoke assertively and with defiant tone unlike soft-spoken Bayingana.
So, he asked him the progress of the war, to which the major replied: "We have taken Gabiro, where we are consolidating, and we are already in Nyagatare.
Then on Zaire and France's help, he said: "We are fighting to go home and we will hit whoever will stand on our way to stop us going home."
Next: 57 Zaire soldiers killed at Gabiro...
Zaire Soldiers Killed
After taking Gabiro and Nyagatare, the rebel soldiers were now knocking on the doors of Kayonza. But then Zaire sent 'commandos' and when Hussein Abdi Hassan went to Kagitumba, he found Maj. Peter Bayingana, it was raining heavily.
Bayingana said: "Today we came under air attack, a Rwandan air force plane used Tanzanian air space to attack Kagitumba and injured two soldiers. On Zaire soldiers Bayingana said: "We came face to face with them at Gabiro, they briefly re-took the barracks but we came back in full force and re-claimed it, 57 Zairean soldiers were killed and we have their uniforms here to show".
The war waged relentlessly but the tide now started turning on the RPF side with the arrival of the French. BBC Kigali correspondent Mugenzi Ally Yusuph reported on the government's side. He said: "The rebels in Nyagatare have been seriously hit, and as a result their commander Major Bosco Nyirigira was captured after they were dispersed".
It seems Yusuph was telling the truth because in November, just one month after the rebel attack, they were defeated completely. Soon, we started seeing young boys trooping into Tanzania with tales. One particular boy was called Kamarade. He was a boy of like 16 years and he had been a recruit. He told me: "The Belgiums and French forces came in full force with tanks and mortars. I have never imagined that. They hit us and the cows we were feeding on, it is a total disarray".
By then Tanzania had sent a battalion led by Lt-Col. Kazika at the border to ensure the war doesnt' spill over to Tanzania. The Tanzanaian soldiers started collecting the defeated RPF solders and their weapons and transported them back to Uganda. River Kagera was flowing with bodies of RPF soldiers who had drowned as they attampted to swim to Tanzania. It was a serious defeat to which Yusuph reported: "Today the whole country has been liberated and the RPF was wiped out of the Rwandan soil.
Next RPF regroups: Captain Louis Dodo opens a new front at Katuna... stay tuned.
RPA Stablises, Starts Scoring Points
When Louis Dodo came to relieve disorganised RPA soldiers the new era had started. No-nonsense Major Paul Kagame was on the ground and the Ugandan media did a lot to explain his credentials. They said he was fresh from a staff and command course in America, he had attended a military intelligence course in Cuba and he entered the Uganda military leadership after graduating as a cadet officer in Monduili Tanzania. He was deputy chief of military intelligence in the Uganda army, NRA.
Now, Kagame's tactic was not to take the enemy head-on. He scaled up in the rugged Virunga mountains, just like how Fidel Castro waged his revolution from the mountains. His first major hit was in Ruhengeri, where a battalion of RPA soldiers led by Captain Vedasto Kayitare attacked, conquered and held the town for a whole day. They rooted supplies and took with them Hutu prisoners including Major Theoneste Lizeinde, a former chief spy of Habyalimana. This piece of news was broadcast by Yusuph from Kigali and added that a colonel in charge of defence of Ruhengeri Charles Wihoreye had been arrested. The war continued, with RPA gaining ground and proving superior to the Rwandan army.
Next: Arusha peace talks begin... stay tuned.
Thanks for your latest email explaining the genocide in Rwanda from your perspective in Tanzania. I recall our previous exchanges (listed below, most recent at top) and look forward to your next installment.
All the best,
HOTEL RWANDA HERO HOAX (Richard says 'humanitarian' Paul Rusesabagina has become inconsistent with his stories)
Richard says France & England recognize that Rwanda's president Kagame is one of Africa's most competent leaders
KAGAME STRATEGY OF PEACE (Richard says Rwanda has the capability to guard its borders & doesn't need to cross into Congo)
RWANDA VIEW FROM TANZANIA (Richard says Kagame waged war to give Rwanda dignity)
Richard says Kagame rescued Rwanda from hell
~ an independent researcher monitoring local, national and international events ~