Rwanda’s Other Genocide

The Nation
Kigali, Rwanda

My friend nervously scanned the paved open-air courtyard. His eyes rested for a few seconds on a nearby table, where three affluent-looking men in suits sipped beers. He glanced into a shadowed corner at a young couple out on a date, then at a group of foreign missionaries gathering for an early dinner.

Continue reading Rwanda’s Other Genocide

Ethio jazz fuses the Western and Eastern music traditions

The Times of London
Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

Mulatu Astatke is bringing his brand of jazz to the Barbican in London
Mulatu Astatke is bringing his brand of jazz to the Barbican in London

On Thursdays, the dim-lit lobby bar at the Jupiter Hotel is packed with music fans knocking back bottles of St George Beer and tumblers of Johnnie Walker to the sounds of The Four Star Band.

Almost any night of the week bars and clubs across the capital are host to live bands playing “Ethio jazz”, a fusion of Western and Ethiopian musical traditions that is enjoying a surge in popularity at home and abroad. Continue reading Ethio jazz fuses the Western and Eastern music traditions

Revisiting the killing fields

The Economist
Nairobi, Kenya

In 1996 Rwandan troops descended on the Chimanga refugee camp in east Congo, to which their compatriots had fled to avoid genocide at home. The soldiers gathered the refugees together with promises of meat to fortify themselves for a promised return to Rwanda. “At a given moment,” says the draft of a new report from the United Nations, “a whistle sounded and the soldiers positioned all around the camp opened fire on the refugees. According to different sources, between 500 and 800 refugees were killed in this way.” Continue reading Revisiting the killing fields