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The Obama administration was on the defensive about the U.S. relationship with Rwanda and its U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice at the Dec. 11, 2012, U.S. House Foreign Affairs Committee hearing on the conflict in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. Two days after the hearing, Rice withdrew her name from consideration to become secretary of state. In President Obama’s statement on Susan Rice, issued the same day, he praised her work but did not mention Rwanda, Uganda or Congo.
On April 8, The Black Star News published “Invisible Children, Makers of Kony 2012, Spied for Ugandan Regime – Wikileaks.” Milton Allimadi, Black Star News publisher, says that his website has become inaccessible due to a “distributed denial-of-service attack” (DDoS attack).
The Kony 2012 campaign is still taking heat over its portrayal of Africans as victims whose only hope lay in the actions – and wallets – of white saviors. And critics say it’s that centuries-old narrative that’s in part responsible for the campaign’s viral success. The white savior complex isn’t just a familiar narrative – it’s a lucrative one.
The LRA is a raggedy bunch of a few hundred at most, poorly equipped, poorly armed and poorly trained. Addressing the problem called the LRA does not call for a military operation. Rather than the reason for accelerated military mobilization in the region, the LRA is the excuse for it. Alas, this message has no room in the Invisible Children video that ends with a call to arms.
Sen. Barbara Boxer co-sponsored the LRA Disarmament Act, even though it strengthens the hand of Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni, whose human rights record includes not only war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide, but also the criminalization of homosexuality, with a penalty of 14 years to life.