ISBN 9789970190010
Pages 244
Dimensions 229 x 152 mm
Illustrations B/W Illustrations and Maps
Published 2009
Publisher Fountain Publishers, Uganda
Format Paperback

Resilience of a Nation

A History of the Military in Rwanda

by Frank K. Rusagara

Rwanda is believed to have emerged around the tenth or eleventh century under King Gihanga, the founder of the prosperous and sovereign nation. Initially, military structures played more of a social role, with their main concern being the preservation of the means of subsistence, other than securing territorial influence. King Gihanga's military formations, for instance, were meant for the security of his family and his economic assets.

It is the aim of Resilience of a Nation: A History of the Military in Rwanda to examine the role that the military has played throughout the history of Rwanda to date. We look at the different phases the Rwandan military has undergone, from the traditional, the colonial and immediate post-independence military to the present. It is the premise of this book that, not precluding any political expediencies, it is the military that played the most central sociopolitical role in what became of Rwanda during its heydays when no slave trader could tread its soil, to its lowest moment during the 1994 genocide. It is also the military that led the way in re uniting a shattered people and the country to becoming a democratic state of reputable international standing. It takes stock of the history that led to the rise of the Inyenzi guerrilla movement in the 1960s, and then the Rwanda Patriotic Front and Army in the late 1980s and early 1990s, leading to the pragmatism of the current Rwanda Defense Forces (RDF). Borrowing from the Ingabo z'u Rwanda of old, the RDF today not only ensures security for all, but provides a model of national unity and integration that continues to inform Rwanda's socio-political and economic development.

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About the Author

Frank K. Rusagara

Brig. Gen. Frank Rusagara was born in Rwanda, but exiled to Uganda at the age of six where he lived, studied and worked, before a brief sojourn in Kenya where he taught for a while. He was involved in the RPF struggle and has held several portfolios in policy formulation and implementation with Rwanda’s Ministry of Defense. He is currently the Military Historian with the Rwanda Defense Forces (RDF).

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