What's a Country to do?

Speaking of mass killings in the eastern regions of the world, it seems that Rwandan genocide survivors aren't too pleased with recent portrayals by Hollywood of the massacres.

The latest screen take on the genocide, and the only to be filmed on location, Michael Caton-Jones's "Shooting Dogs," had its world premiere at a stadium in Kigali last month.

It was filmed at the Ecole Technique Officielle, a school in the capital where Belgian U.N. troops abandoned more than 2,000 Tutsis to be slaughtered by machete-wielding killers.

One of the survivors is quoted as saying,

"My conclusion was that both movies are another Hollywood fiction geared at making money," said Jean Pierre Rucogoza, a 47-year-old university lecturer and genocide survivor who has watched "Sometimes in April" and "Hotel Rwanda."

Rucogoza lost 11 relatives in the killings. In an interview on the eve of the 12th anniversary of the genocide earlier this month, he said he believed the films partly represented the West's conscience rearing its head too late.

As much as this story makes me want to cry, as hard as it is to relate to the events that have occured on that side of the planet, and as inexcusable as our absence or neglect is, it's still a bit hard to stomach the entire Eastern world calling for our help but rebuking us when we do extend our hand. If help is asked for, should there be provisions upon the "good Samaritan," for lack of a better term?

According to media reports, America appears to be in a lose-lose situation. Either we choose not to get involved in foreign affairs because it's not in our interest or otherwise, or we do get involved and are then blamed for not doing enough or doing it all wrong. It's a little grating after a while. The city on a hill image is one beloved by our country and looked to by the world. But every once in a while, the near messianic hopes of our support can quickly become fodder for anti-American sentiment.

Reuters has the rest of the story from the perspective of those who lived through the genocide.

Posted by Portia at April 19, 2006 03:30 PM | TrackBack