Yves Engler

Ryan Remiorz

Washington and London’s support for Paul Kagame’s more than two-decade long control of Kigali explains the dominance of a highly simplistic account of Rwanda’s genocide. But a tertiary reason for the strength of the fairy tale is it aligns with the nationalist mythology of another G7 state: Canada.

MC

Canada doesn't want Guinean asylum seekers in its territory. It is not that thousands of Guineans are flocking the North American nation. Only a few applicants are seeking refuge. Yet Guinea is a mineral-rich country. In a number of ways, Canada has since the colonial days contributed to the impoverishment that drives Guineans to seek a better life elsewhere.

Getty Images

From commemorating Rwanda’s dubious Liberation Day to applauding Paul Kagame’s questionable landslide election victory, Canada’s High Commissioner in Kigali has provided various forms of ideological support to Africa’s most ruthless dictator. That should embarrass everyone who wants Canada to be a force for good in the world.

Wikimedia Commons

Taking advantage of media interest in protests over monuments to historical figures with racist views, activists in Halifax are pushing to remove commemorations of two individuals who helped conquer Africa. And there’s no lack of other such memorials to target across the Great White North.

The Canadian mining giant Barrick Gold’s African subsidiary, Acacia Mining, is embroiled in a major political conflict in Tanzania. With growing evidence of its failure to pay royalties and tax, Acacia has been condemned by President Magufuli, had its exports restricted and slapped with a massive tax bill. Barrick enjoys considerable government backing.

Proactive Investros

In Zambia, as with elsewhere in Africa, Canada’s mining industry, foreign policy and neoliberalism overlap tightly. It is a subject Canadians ought to pay attention to if they want their country to be a force for good in the world.

Global Affairs Canada

Imagine if the media only reported the good news that governments and corporations wanted you to see, hear and read about. Unfortunately, that is not far from the reality of reporting about Canada’s role internationally.

Wiki

Celebrated Canadian soldier William Grant Stairs helped King Leopold II of Belgium conquer the resource-rich Katanga region of the Congo. Known for his heartless brutality, Stairs headed a heavily armed mission that swelled to 2,000. The goal of the expedition was to extend Leopold’s authority over Katanga to get a piece of the copper, ivory and gold trade.

Northern Miner

Banro operates in a region that has seen incredible violence over the past two decades and the secretive company has been accused of fuelling the conflict. In 1996 Banro paid $3.5 million for 47 mining concessions that covered more than one million hectares of land in Congo’s North and South Kivu.

JON WARREN/WORLD VISION

The mass killings in Rwandan in 1994 are often invoked inside and outside the country for ulterior purposes. In Canada, the story is part of developing a “do-gooder” foreign policy mythology designed to lull the nation into backing interventionist policies. More generally, a highly simplistic account of Rwanda ‘94 has repeatedly been invoked to justify liberal imperialism, particularly the responsibility to protect doctrine.

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