The Road Always Taken
Yesterday, I had the chance to watch Sam Rugege (Deputy President of the Supreme Court of Rwanda) give a lecture on Rwanda's pursuit of justice and reconciliation after it's 1994 genocide. He started off with the phrase "A million people killed in a hundred days" as he told the tale of the violence (and history of the violence) that Rwanda suffered. For the next hour or so, he discussed the systems Rwanda put in place to deal with the memory and injustice of its genocide. He discussed how schools teach the new generation about the genocide; not by blaming and demonizing one side, but by dealing with it as a human tragedy.
When the lecture ended, I had the opportunity to ask "How does Rwanda ensure that it doesn't fall back 12 years in time?"
His reply was "Nothing is certain, but we have tried what we think is the best way to break from the past. We have tried to instill a sense of justice into our people. We have tried to break the barrier between the two communities, between perpetrator and victim, and to educate our people on our inherent independence. We have tried to create a path of justice and to attempt reconciliation; both are important, but none of which will survive on its own. And if we fail, at least we can say that we tried. At least we can tell our grandchildren that we tried to make a better place for them."
The question is: Has Lebanon tried? Has it tried anything else besides repeating the (faulty) actions of past generations?
The answer to those questions is much shorter than the answer he gave.
The answer is "No."