Tuesday, June 26, 2012

13 Tweets about M23 Commander Sultani Makenga

New Yorker reporter Philip Gourevitch scored a telephone interview with M23 leader Sultani Makenga last week (June 21) and seems to have tweeted his interview in real time or soon thereafter. While we await Gourevitch's latest write-up on the international community's continuing transgressions against Rwanda, I thought it might be worth assembling these tweets to get a sense of how Makenga views the developing situation:
UPDATE: Gourevitch writes to say that "multiple recent fdlr defectors told me m23 fight was reviving fardc ties w/ fdlr" and that his "point was fighting fdlr was not obvious rationale for Rwanda backing M23 since fdlr, which was weakened, could gain from it."

  1. Makenga: #M23 is military movement to enforce accord b/n govt & CNDP & "Bosco's a General who has a personal problem. We are not with him."
  2. Colonel Makenga quote #2: "I’m telling you that we [#M23] are independent. We are not with General Bosco - and we will never be with him."
  3. more Makenga: I think all ex-CNDP & soldiers of all armed groups & govt soldiers too will join [#M23]: "it’s in everyone’s interest" #DRC
  4. No Makenga surprise on alleged #Rwanda support for #M23: "That's false. That's propaganda." You mean Monusco, Western govt.'s, HRW? "False"
  5. Makenga: "We were in FARDC [Congo army] & they gave us our ammunition & arms, & everyday we get more ammunition & arms off FARDC" #M23 #DRC
  6. Would Makenga negotiate? "If one speaks of that at least we have to be secure. Thats why we’re here. We’re not here because we wanted war"
  7. Makenga: "The government that started it. It’s the govt that started killing." & now he said: "FARDC & FDLR are together"- again #M23#DRC
  8. Makenga said he's on a hill 8 km from Rutshuru and controls a lot of territory, but he doesn't want to take Rutshuru or Bunagana - "For now"
  9. Makenga says #M23 fighters are Hutu & Tutsi & from Katanga & Equateur & even Kabila presidential guard: "all who want change & speak truth"
  10. Makenga on Congo military: "It's not an army… an army w/out valor… an army that rapes, an army that steals, an army w/out doctrine."
  11. Is Makenga aiming to take more territory? I said I want to visit but he's so hard to get to. He said "Soon it will be very easy." #m23 #DRC
  12. chump-reporter blunder du jour: costs like 10x more to call Congo than USA from Rwanda so I ran out of airtime mid-Makenga-interview
  13. OK, there really isn't a 13th, but today Gourevitch did tweet in his own voice that "Only the FDLR is profiting from a revived alliance with Congo government." Which is exactly what Makenga said in tweet 7. Perhaps it's true, but I haven't seen this reported elsewhere. I've asked G for his sourcing on the revival of the FDLR-FARDC alliance, and will let you know if I hear anything. [Update: I've sent him several tweets he hasn't responded to.]


  1. Thanks for this, David. Doesn't Gourevitch realize what a tool this makes him appear to be?

  2. I read his other tweets, at least he doesn't hide his hatred for Congo. Really disgusting reporting

  3. I wonder if he doesn't report for new times of Rwanda. What's the google map is supposed to prove?