Posted by: sean | November 18, 2008

Guerrillas in the mist

Guerrilla in the mist


Rwandans sometimes remark bitterly that had Diane Fossey’s gorillas, rather than Tutsis and opposition Hutus, been the target of the 1994 genocide, the international community would have been much more concerned.

So it’s in that context that this article has to be mentioned:

Eastern Congo is home to almost a third of the world’s last 700 wild mountain gorillas (the rest are in nearby areas of Rwanda and Uganda). Now, there are no trained rangers to protect them. More than 240 Congolese game wardens have been run off their posts, including some who narrowly escaped a surging rebel advance last month and slogged through the jungle for three days living off leaves and scoopfuls of mud for hydration.

In all fairness to Gettleman, not every day is a news day, and gorillas often sell more papers than guerrillas, and he seems to be trying to make it not just about gorillas but also about the people who take care of them. Yet somehow, I can’t shake the feeling that the last sentence that’s tacked on at the end of the article as an aside seems much more newsworthy:

France began circulating a draft resolution on Monday that would temporarily authorize an additional 3,085 troops and police officers for the peacekeeping mission in the Congo to protect civilians in the eastern part of the country.


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