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Chapter Summary

It becomes clear that, upon hearing of the plane crash, the United States immediately realized that this could lead to grave violence in both Rwanda and Burundi. Everyone in the American administration was determined to rescue their own nationals from Rwanda, and in Washington that objective got the highest priority-and the only one-in the first days following the crash. The first people being evacuated by the French that morning were not French nationals but members of the presidential family, together with several Akazu members. At the start of the evacuation operation, UNAMIR was still under the presumption that UNAMIR was going to be enforced. It is concluded that the plane crash and the possible consequences were taken very seriously. Consequently, Western countries immediately organized a strong, heavily equipped military force to evacuate their own nationals.

Keywords: American military; Belgian military; evacuation operation; French military; UNAMIR



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