The Great African War: Congo and Regional Geopolitics, 1996-2006

The Great African War: Congo and Regional Geopolitics, 1996-2006

by Filip Reyntjens
     
 

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ISBN-10: 0521169054

ISBN-13: 9780521169059

Pub. Date: 08/23/2010

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

This book examines a decade-long period of instability, violence and state decay in Central Africa from 1996, when the war started, to 2006, when elections formally ended the political transition in the Democratic Republic of Congo. A unique combination of circumstances explain the unravelling of the conflicts: the collapsed Zairian/Congolese state; the

Overview

This book examines a decade-long period of instability, violence and state decay in Central Africa from 1996, when the war started, to 2006, when elections formally ended the political transition in the Democratic Republic of Congo. A unique combination of circumstances explain the unravelling of the conflicts: the collapsed Zairian/Congolese state; the continuation of the Rwandan civil war across borders; the shifting alliances in the region; the politics of identity in Rwanda, Burundi and eastern DRC; the ineptitude of the international community; and the emergence of privatized and criminalized public spaces and economies, linked to the global economy, but largely disconnected from the state – on whose territory the “entrepreneurs of insecurity” function. As a complement to the existing literature, this book seeks to provide an in-depth analysis of concurrent developments in Zaire/DRC, Rwanda, Burundi and Uganda in African and international contexts. By adopting a non-chronological approach, it attempts to show the dynamics of the inter-relationships between these realms and offers a toolkit for understanding the past and future of Central Africa.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780521169059
Publisher:
Cambridge University Press
Publication date:
08/23/2010
Pages:
340
Product dimensions:
5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.90(d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements ix

List of Maps xi

Introduction 1

1 A Region in Turmoil 10

1.1 Kivu: Land of confrontation 10

National context 10

Crises of identity, of land and of politics 13

The new given: Influx of Hutu refugees 16

South Kivu: The Banyamulenge 21

1.2 Rwanda: From genocide to dictatorship 23

The power base 24

The drift 25

'Burundisation' of Rwanda 29

Militarisation of the political landscape 31

Continuity in managing the state 32

1.3 Burundi: From putsch to civil war 34

Creeping coup 34

Extension of the civil war 39

Coup of 25 July 1996 and its aftermath 41

1.4 Regional junctions 42

2 The 'War of Liberation' 45

2.1 The 'Banyamulenge Rebellion' and the Rwandan operation 45

2.2 The other eastern neighbours: Uganda and Burundi 58

2.3 Angola enters the fray: Kinshasa in 100 days 61

2.4 Other regional allies 65

2.5 U.S. involvement 66

Logistical and political support 66

Supply of material and personnel 70

Incoberence 74

Degree of involvement 77

3 Massacre of the Rwandan Refugees 80

3.1 Aborted international intervention 80

3.2 Crimes against humanity: Genocide? 87

Attacks against refugee camps and concentrations 93

Humanitarian assistance withheld or used as bait 96

Separation of men from women and children 97

Involvement of the RPA 98

Massacres of other groups 99

3.3 The force of manipulation 99

4 The Fall of the Mobutist State 102

4.1 The players 102

Laurent-Désiré Kabila and the Alliance des Forces Démocratiques pour la Libération du Congo-Zaïre (AFDL) 102

The Forces Armées Zaïroises (FAZ)and their allies 108

4.2 The diplomatic ballet 118

4.3 Meanwhile, in Kinshasa, the orchestra on the TITANIC 131

4.4 The new geopolitical situation 140

5 Congo: Waiting for Another War 144

5.1 The 'liberated territories' in the East 144

Two problems worse than before 144

Massive human rights violations 152

Practices of governance 153

5.2 The end of an alliance and the prelude to a new war 155

The regime adrift 155

The art of making enemies 164

Towards a new war 166

6 Impasse in Rwanda and Burundi 170

6.1 The civil wars 170

6.2 Political or military outcomes? 179

6.3 Justice in deadlock 181

6.4 Institutional developments and practice of governance 184

7 'The First African World War' 194

7.1 From Goma to Kitona, and to military stalemate 194

7.2 Shifting alliances 201

7.3 Wars within the war 207

The Kivus 207

Ituri 215

7.4 Privatisation and criminalisation 221

State collapse and the privatisation of public space 221

Criminalisation of states and economies 224

8 Negotiating the Transition 232

8.1 The political landscape 232

The regime in Kinshasa 232

The rebel movements 238

8.2 The false start of negotiations: From Victoria Falls to the death of Laurent Kabila 244

Many cooks in the same kitchen 244

The Lusaka process 247

From Lusaka to the assassination of Laurent Kabila 250

8.3 Towards an imposed settlement: From the accession of Joseph Kabila to Sun City 252

A dynastic succession 252

From Sun City to Pretoria, and back to Sun City 256

8.4 Political transition in conflict 261

The bumpy road towards elections 261

The 2006 elections 271

Conclusion 279

Appendix 1 Sources on the killings of Rwandan refugees in early 1997 287

Appendix 2 Chronology 291

Appendix 3 List of abbreviations 297

References 303

Index 319

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