Shake hands with the devil; the failure of humanity in Rwanda

Dallaire, R. (2003). Shake hands with the devil; the failure of humanity in Rwanda. London: Arrow books.

Romeo Dallaire is a former military commander  of the UN mission in Rwanda. In his book he tells his story about how he experienced the genocide in Rwanda. He elaborates on his attempts to reconciliate the Hutu’s and the Tutsi’s and how he tried to prevent this genocide from happening. The frustration of this man is all too obvious when he tells about his attempts to get the UN to send help, that in never came. In the end he talks about the death calculus where it became clear for him that the Rwandans were not worth saving. One life of an American soldier was worth the equivalent of about 7000 Rwandans. This book is helpful for my thesis because it tells the inside story from the ‘blue helmets’ while in Rwanda. It suddenly became clear that UNAMIR tried to do something there, but were not supported by the UN-headquarters in New York. I would recommend this book to anybody looking for a better understanding what happened with the UN-mission in Rwanda and how things escalated.