The Perils of Regionalism: Genocide in Rwanda

Topics: Rwandan Genocide, Rwanda, Hutu Pages: 3 (1035 words) Published: June 18, 2002
In Priestley's "Wrong Ism", he claims that nationalism is not the strength that binds a country together, but rather all of the small local areas we are all accustomed to growing up in that gives us strength. Priestley considers nationalistic ideas and movements to be headed by people who have a love of power and who have left out their regional ties. They no longer have feelings for the areas they came from and any loyalty developed over their lifetime is watered down.

Priestley feels regionalism needs to be given more credit. He assumes it provides us with roots and a sense of attachment to our community which affect people's lives in such a way that it creates a unique bond that can be very hard to break. So in a sense, regionalism shapes our identities and I agree with his assumption that people view themselves more as part of their region rather than a part of their nation. Loyalty to one's region can be compromised when individuals allow national power and greed to destroy their roots.

There are many examples of how nationalism tries to take over a region to destroy its people. For instance genocide, in nearly all examples, has been started by a power-hungry national figure who has an agenda in mind that never takes into account what a local area's wish might be for their future. Hitler is an example of this type of authoritarian oppressor who had a very complex national strategy in place to exterminate the Jews. He certainly did not consider or recognize regional differences in Europe, but rather put forth his own agenda. Genocide is on a whole different level than all other crimes against humanity. The circumstance I will describe shows how Priestley's concept of internationalism also comes into play showing how our global watchdog agencies, such as the UN, can be slow to respond to an atrocity. For the most part, the UN has avoided and has not responded to many genocidal conflicts. Every time subjects of genocide or other similar crimes...
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