Anjan Sundaram | Bad News: Last Journalists in a Dictatorship | Doubleday | January 2016 | 27 minutes (7,197 words)
[Not single-page] Goucher, a small liberal-arts college, hired a French professor from Rwanda named Leopold Munyakazi through The Scholar Rescue Fund, an organization devoted to providing asylum to intellectuals whose lives and work are threatened in their home countries. Sanford J. Ungar, the president of the college, is contacted by investigative reporters at NBC, and Goucher is subsequently accused of harboring a war criminal:
The details of the accusations were horrifying, and I sat reading the documents while my visitors watched. Between April and July 1994, Leopold had been part of a ‘joint criminal enterprise,’ the indictment alleged, and had ‘trained, indoctrinated, encouraged, provided criminal intelligence to, transported and distributed arms to members’ of the armed forces and civilian militias, who in turn ‘murdered, caused seriously [sic] bodily and mental harm, raped and pillaged Tutsi group members.’ It said he had attended meetings of Hutu in the Kayenzi commune, where he and others allegedly complained that the killing was ‘lagging behind.’ Possibly he had planned or even chaired those meetings. At one such gathering at the Kirwa primary school, Munyakazi ‘took the floor to address more than 2,000 residents,’ it claimed, ‘and publicly incited the masses to commit genocide.’ He had, according to the indictment, personally turned over to the militia a woman who had taken refuge at his home, so that she could be killed.
I was incredulous, filled with a mixture of anger and self-doubt. As their Rwandan companion nodded quietly in agreement, the producers from NBC demanded to know how Goucher could have sheltered such an evil man. They wanted to film me reacting to the indictment, but I refused. I hid behind the Scholar Rescue Fund, protesting that Leopold had been screened and certified, and that was all we knew. Later, in a New Republic story that was part of the flurry of early, short-lived interest in Leopold’s case, the producers were even quoted as describing my attitude as ‘flippant.’