Painting by Cheri Samba

Lokuta eyaka na ascenseur, kasi vérité eyei na escalier mpe ekomi. Lies come up in the elevator; the truth takes the stairs but gets here eventually. - Koffi Olomide

Ésthetique eboma vélo. Aesthetics will kill a bicycle. - Felix Wazekwa

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Guest blog: The M23 rebellion and the dead-end street of military integration in eastern DRC


This is a guest blog by Maria Eriksson Baaz, Associate Professor at the Nordic Africa Institute and the School of Global Studies, Gothenburg University, Sweden; and Judith Verweijen , PhD Candidate at the Centre for Conflict Studies at Utrecht University and the Faculty of Military Sciences at the Netherlands Defense Academy. 

Recent events in the Kivu provinces have highlighted, once again, the dangers of never-ending armed group integration, as well as its deleterious effects on the Congolese army. This blog post addresses some issues which, so far, have been absent in discussions of the new rebellion. By placing the M23 in the context of armed group integration into the FARDC, we intend to shed light on the processes that contributed to its formation, the weak response of the FARDC, and most importantly, what a potential peace-deal with the M23 should avoid.  

The Congolese Government has officially, so far, refused to negotiate with the M23, and has expelled its leading officers from the FARDC’s ranks. This could be judged as a non-constructive engagement from the Congolese side. However, we would argue that this position could be seen as a positive sign, reflecting a potential commitment to the recently declared non-compromising policy towards army defectors and re-mobilized armed groups.

 The vicious cycle of military integration and erosion

Let us begin by attending to the question why the FARDC, yet again, (so far) have proved unable to hold ground or make significant advances  in spite of the fact that several foreign-trained elite units (by Belgium, the US and South Africa) were deployed as reinforcements. What certainly plays a role is the relative strength of the M23, bolstered by Rwandan support in the form of the supply of ammunition and weapons, new recruits and direct operational interventions by Rwandan troops. However, the most important explanations must be sought in the weak combat capabilities of the FARDC. The main problem here is not the lack of training, as suggested by some observers. It is much more systemic and is, as we argue, to a large extent a result of the “carrots without sticks” politics of military integration.

One explanation for the FARDC’s disappointing performance is the lack of centralized and efficient command and control, logistical support and organizational capacity. Combat requires seamless command chains and a high level of coordination and organization, as the military units involved need steady supplies of especially ammunitions, rations, medicine, and transport for rapid (re)deployments. This support has, yet again, been insufficient. Secondly, the constant leaks of military intelligence have deprived the FARDC of the element of surprise. Parts of the ex-CNDP have remained integrated into the FARDC, but are suspected to maintain links with their former colleagues. Despite some efforts to redeploy the most distrusted commanders and units, the dominance of the ex-CNDP in North Kivu’s command structures as well as their in-depth knowledge of the area and of the combat tactics of their opponents have made it both impossible and undesirable to entirely remove them from the scene. 

Thirdly, the relative lack of material (e.g. salaries) and non-material (e.g. social status, recognition) rewards for FARDC soldiers weakens their enthusiasm to risk their lives on the battlefield. It should be acknowledged that motivation has been stronger this time than previously, in that the resentment against the privileged position of ex-CNDP troops was strongly felt among military personnel. Furthermore, the demonstrated involvement of Rwanda has fully revived deeply rooted anti-Rwandan/Tutsi sentiments and unleashed a wave of popular support for the FARDC, now newly branded as patriotic heroes. However, this has not been enough to compensate for the absence of other factors generating incentives to engage in the risks involved in combat (e.g. unit cohesion and minimum standards of service conditions concerning salaries, rations, medical care and social services).

The three factors mentioned above have been immensely aggravated by what we would argue is one of the main problems in the DR Congo’s defense sector, namely the Government’s “carrots without sticks” politics of military integration. The absence of serious military pressure on non-integrated forces, the lack of sanctions for defectors, and the promises of high ranks and good positions for those (re)joining the military, has made defecting from and then renegotiating back into the FARDC an attractive option for military entrepreneurs. This has contributed to creating incentive structures that promote the proliferation of armed groups as well as army desertion, with the military becoming a revolving door for armed factions.  The M23 seems to be a direct product of this logic: rather than directly challenging the established state structures, it initially appeared to be mostly geared towards the creation of a strong position for future negotiations, although it has gradually also obtained a momentum of its own.

Aside from creating incentives for insurgent violence, never-ending military integration has weakened the military. By allowing autonomous power networks to remain partly intact, it has promoted the proliferation of parallel structures of command within the military, thus negatively impacting on its performance. Additionally, continuous armed group integration has created feelings of unpredictability and unfairness within the ranks of the FARDC: who would want to risk their lives for an enemy that might very well be welcomed back again into the army, perhaps in an even more privileged position than before? While desertion is considered the most grave form of indiscipline in other armies, subject to severe punishments, the Congolese authorities –often encouraged by the international community -  have regularly welcomed defected units and commanders back into the fold, sometimes even rewarding them (at least on paper) with better opportunities. Apart from gravely undermining cohesion within military units, this has profoundly shaken up soldiers’ understanding of the military profession and their own role and identity. 

Tackling M23: reproducing or reducing violence?

A vicious cycle has been created in which military integration has undermined the improvement of military capabilities, rendering the military defeat of armed groups infeasible. This, in turn, has encouraged the DR Government to co-opt rather than to combat armed groups, in this way further weakening the FARDC. Moreover, by allowing integrated groups to stay in their former strongholds, and granting them autonomous control over lucrative areas of deployment, this process has become intractable. In the case of the ex-CNDP, Rwandan support has exacerbated this autonomy, rendering the gradual dilution of its influence in the FARDC, as was the rationale behind its original integration, merely hypothetical. 

If this cycle continues there is little hope for progress in the military reform process. It will further demoralize already demoralized troops and feed indiscipline and continuous internal conflicts and parallel chains of command. Additionally, it will encourage a further militarization of the economy and administrative functions in the Kivus, as violence continues to be rewarded.  In this respect, it is important to stress the absence of vetting mechanisms, allowing past abusers to obtain time and again important positions in the military, sets a dubious example both within the FARDC and for society at large. 

To be clear, we are not saying there is no other solution to the M23 rebellion than a military one. However, any negotiation with this group and its foreign and domestic backers should recognize that they deserted from the army and that welcoming them back in again will have serious detrimental effects both on the military reform process and the prospects for reducing violence and armed group activity in the Kivus.  Military integration has proved to fuel rather than to reduce the militarization of eastern DR Congo: let’s not drive into this dead-end street again.

69 comments:

Anonymous said...

In the art of war by Sun Tsu:” A leader leads by example not by force”. Kabila just came out of a four month slumber to make his first statement since the start of the war. Dear Maria and Judith, would you fight for such a commander in chief? It is not lack of training either as the Belgians had been training whole battalions…. Unfortunately they only trained them in one military strategy: tactical withdrawal.
You marvel into xenophobic sentiments that had in your own words disappointed you: “ … revived deeply rooted anti-Rwandan/Tutsi sentiments and unleashed a wave of popular support for the FARDC, now newly branded as patriotic heroes. However, this has not been enough to compensate for the absence of other factors generating incentives to engage in the risks involved in combat.” This is why M23 will win.
Your title says all: M23 rebellion and the dead end street of military integration. Looking at battlefield momentum, it looks like FARDC will not be integrated into M23.

Anonymous said...

RWANDA IS ACTING IN BAD FAITH.
The 23 march agreement allowed RDF to join the hunt of Hutus genocidaires. These RDF participated in Kimia 1, Kimia 2, Umoja Wetu, Amani Leo, Amani Kamilifu. Most of these RDF soldiers never returned to Rwanda. They have become Fardc. It is an open secret. Unlike General Nkunda who is authentic true Congolese, Terminator Ntaganda is a Rwandese Citizen (even the ICC arrest warrant shows that). The Drc nationality law stipulates that everybody whose parents were in Congo on June 30, 1960 is a Congolese National. Ntaganda was born in 1973 in Kinigi, Rwanda. His parents were not in Congo in 1960. But, Kagame wants the world to believe that Ntaganda is Congolese. He is not. Kagame has to hand him over to the ICC. Rwanda wants to force Ntaganda down Congo’s throat as he did for Kabarebe who was presented to the Kinois public as a Congolese. Mzee LDK was compelled at gun point to appoint him as Congo’s Chief of Staff. More than 300 RDF SPECIAL FORCES are still operating inside the DRC where they are carrying out targeted assassination of Fdlr leaders. It is them who killed the FDLR Chief of Staff Col. Mugaragu and an elite battalion’s commander Col. Kanzeguhera. Other several important Fdlr officers have also been wiped out by those RDF commandos. Kabila has done everything possible to comply with Rwanda’s demands. But, Rwanda is not an honest peace broker. It is worth to note that there are two Fdlr: One still commanded by General Rwarakabije (a former Fdlr Chief of staff who defected to Kigali from where he still coordinates operations inside Kivu aimed to sabotaging the DDRRR operations). It is this group that is used to manufacture blackmails and treason accusations against Rwandese opposition figures, like Mushayidi, Ingabire. As the Group of Experts found out, this group includes Fdlr who are repatriated from Drc, sent to Rwanda, demobilized, and then sent back to DRC, when the need arises. So, it’s a vicious circle. The Fdlr will never go away because Kagame wants it to remain alive so he can cash on it and build his propaganda on the endless menace the group represents to Rwanda. The second group includes those who were in conflict with Rwarakabije in the bush; and who are afraid of returning to Rwanda; especially now that Rwarakabije is the Head of Rwandan prisons. In Congo, Tutsis represent less than 1% of the total population. Yet, in Kivu, 90% of colonels, and other higher ranking officers in Fardc, are Tutsis. As a matter of fact, Tutsis have 20 generals within the Drc army! Hunde, Nyanga, Bashi, Bembe, etc. have none. The Inspector General of Police, the MD and CEO of all Congo Revenue, the General Auditor of the FARDC, the Chief of Fardc Logistic, the Commandants of Fardc in the provinces of Bandundu and South-Kivu, the Commandant of Kitona Airs base, etc. are Tutsi. Most of the current operation Commandants (regiments) in Kivu, are Tutsis. Where is the discrimination against them? All the defecting officers had ‘jeeps de commandement’ (which they burned down). No other Congolese president would favor Tutsis as Joseph Kabila did. No wonder that some say that he is also a Tutsi. Can you imagine: all the Fardc soldiers and Commandants who are fighting M23 are Kabila loyalist Tutsis. To avoid a fratricide war, loyalist Tutsis soldiers keep withdrawing from their positions. But the point is that Congolese Tutsis are very much afraid of the M23 war backlash! They know that Kagame will come and go, but Congolese Tutsis will have to live with other Congolese whose families have been wiped out by Kagame’s mass crimes whereby Congolese have been killed (1000 in Kisangani, 200 in Kiwanja), burn to death (876 in Makobola), buried alive (14 women in Kasika), castrated ( 12 men in Karuba):
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/shared/spl/hi/pop_ups/08/africa_views_on_nkunda0s_arrest/html/8.stm

Anand said...

I agree with pretty much everything this analysis has to say. There is nothing glaringly new here regarding FARDC and the failure of CNDP integration, but there is an important and well stated caution to not commit the same mistakes with M23. But there is one issue I have a hard time with. Often there is talk of Security Sector Reform or the need to improve FARDC. But FARDC seems to dance between being cast as an illegitimate, marauding army that is guilty of preying on the population, to a legitimate but ineffective fighting force that needs improving. But all of this talk of improving FARDC seems mute without governance reform. How do you reform an army when the legitimacy and motivations of the ruling class that controls it are in question. Just because the West has endorsed last November's elections, doesn't mean that the government suddenly has the political will to do right by people in the Kivus. The fact that FARDC is deployed against M23 with little to no consideration for civilian welfare should tell us something about Kinshasa's priorities. Also, if the army was "improved" then what to what end might the government use it? We've seen how well formed armies can be used in corrupt regimes in the Middle East and Northern Africa. I am not implying that the M23 situation not be dealt with. But without a change in overall governance I wonder about the wisdom of bolstering FARDC. It is good that the West is slowly taking actions regarding Rwandan involvement, but that doesn't suddenly absolve or legitimize Kinshasa nor FARDC.

Anonymous said...

http://youtu.be/hFJRyRu89Ek

Anonymous said...

M23 (just like all the previous made-in-rwanda rebellions)is a distraction that draws even intelligent people into endless debates and discussions. There is but one problem in Kongo and that's Kabila, problem imposed on the Kongolese people once again during last year's presidential election by the international community. The world failed the Kongolese people by denying Tshisekedi his rightful victory over Kabila despite undisputable evidence that the latter cheated during the votes (he even acknowledged it in international media!!!). Kabila will never send his buddies from Kigali back home and that's why some people in certain circles wants him that position. They fear Tshisekedi because they know that the day he will take the reins of that country, it will be the end of the party, masks will fall off and real efforts for a long lasting peace in the region will start. Clearly, this is not the wish of those benefiting from the current mayhem. Kabila must go. Kabila will go. Kabila is about to go. Every congolese knows this.

Anonymous said...

I hope the UDPS join the rest of the Country in the fight against the Rwandan invasion. This is no longer a KABILA,CHICHI ,KAMERHE or KENGO isue,the election has passed and the Country has moved on. The UDPS needs to start reorganizing learn from It's mistakes and prepare for the 2016 elections . The 2011 election is not going to be repeated, the government is not going to be changed in order to please CHICHI ,KENGO or KAMERHE and Rwanda is not trying to help any opposition leader get to power .the country is more important than CHICHI ,J KABILA or KAMERHE...let's stop dividing the nation in order to help KAGAME conquer. Today the CATHOLIC church has organised marches all around the COUNTRY in an attempt to UNITE THE NATIOMN against our Common enemy (the plan balkanization of the DRC ,by KAGAME ,MUSEVENI and their backers). I was very desapointed to hear that Wile the entire nation responded to this call and massively demonstrated against the enemies of our state,members of the UDPS forbade their supporters to participate.at this time of national Unity it will be very wise for the UDPS leaders to moderate their actions,because Radicalism and extremism will only lead them to farther self destruct. The CATHOLIC CHURCH is amongst the many institutions who did not support KABILA during the last election, yet they have been calling for national Unity .the UDPS can now use this moment to evaluate it self and prepare for the next elections ,or they can continue to be a radical movement ,self destruct and be seen by the entire nation as trators.

Anonymous said...

This writer, deliberately omits to mention FDLR! Rwanda should go to sleep, taking interest in Congo, where there are 10,000 genocidaires dedicated to its destruction? Oh no.
May I ask, why is that western media is so obsessed with Rwanda? Why are they not taking interest in Israel? Afghanistan? Iraq? Syria? Lybia? etc? Whet it is done by a white man or in the interest of white man is not wrong.
Guardian publishes an article on Rwanda everyday! I have never seen an african country that generates western interest like Rwanda. Rwanda has genuine interest in Congo, to fight terrorists who number 10,000. USA went to afghanistan and iraq to fight one person Osama, what about Rwanda with huge security interests? Rwanda should not leave Congo, and should openly declare its interest to intervene!

Anonymous said...

As long as FDLR is in Congo, Rwanda will continue to keep tab on what is going on there! Not genuine security interest?

Anonymous said...

Western media is biased against Rwanda! Guardian has been bought by anti-Rwanda propangandists, they use David Smith in South Africa, who quotes Tom and Jerry who wants to speak shit on Rwanda

Anonymous said...

Incompetence of Congo should not be blamed on Rwanda, which has done more good than harm in Congo.
1. Helped them get rid of Mobutu, what did they pay? insults and xenophibia
2. Trained and groomed Kabila to be president
3. Helped during past election

Anonymous said...

The problem of Congo is Kabila, congolese people need to get rid of Kabila and start building an army which will exclude any kinyarwanda speaker from congo, because among them we really don't kbow who is Congolese and who is not. All army officers should come from the west of the country at least we can trust them. We need to root out all the tutsi within the army and the security cluster that will be a good start, beginning with Kabila (kanambe)himself

Anonymous said...

Dear congolese brothers, the only advice i can give you is "take care of yourselves" nobody else will do it for you!last year you were so mad at the international community for accepting what you called rigged elections and today you are calling to the same IC to help you out with the rebellion.You are not consistent and the whole world knows it and play around with it.In the 90's your problems were the Lebanese,then the belgians, then the senegalese (known as ndingari) today it's rwanda!who's next?

Anonymous said...

If I see a glaring omission in this guest post, it is that the authors understate the role of the international community in the unfolding fiasco of military integration in the FARDC.

It was the Bush administration that pressured Joseph Kabila to engage in a rapprochement with Kigali, to integrate the CNDP into the ranks of the FARDC, and to allow joint Congolese/Rwandan military operations against the FDLR. In exchange Laurent Nkunda was relieved of command of the CNDP.

There was a logic behind each of these moves - but the haphazard way in which they were carried out has had disastrous results. Joseph Kabila paid a heavy price in terms of domestic legitimacy for his willingness to respond to the demands of the international community. I'm not sure he had much choice, the Bush administration could be quite persuasive.

The rapprochement between Kinshasa and Kigali is now in tatters; joint Congolese/Rwandan operations against the FDLR certainly went a long way in dealing with Rwanda's legitimate national security concerns, but M23 has put those successes in jeopardy; integration of the CNDP into the FARDC allowed an indicted war criminal to prey on Congolese civilians in the Kivus with catastrophic results.

Despite Kabila's good faith efforts to cooperate with the international community, bad faith on the part of others under one pretext or another has led to a new crisis in the DRC.

This is a crisis in the international system and the relevant powers in the Security Council need to find a solution - this is a crisis of our making.

Bruce

Anonymous said...

@ Bruce you are wrong when you say the security council should find a solution. this problem is a congolese problem, when Kabila does something he needs to do it in the interest of the congolese people. Why shoult Congo allow itself to be dictated by the IC. No within the IC care about congo's interest, the sooner we learn that the better.

Anonymous said...

I am afraid when all Congolese are putting their confidence in international security, international community and so on. Please, Congolese do you have time to sit and think about your problems, searching solutions without foreign countries and industrialized countries? You have good soldiers motivated who look forward Congo as as prosperous country in the future, I would say that your future should be based in M23. Please, instead of loosing your time by mobilizing national and international community against Tutsi, you should approach them and talk with them for peace and development. Want, not want Congolese Tutsi should have the same rights like others Congolese.

Anonymous said...

M23 a tutsi rebellion representing 1% of the population and supported by a foreign nation Rwanda is the future of DRC? Really???????? That should be a joke!!!!!

Anonymous said...

the logic of Jason Stearns and his hutu power ideologist is like saying for Black Africans to deport all non Black Africans from Africa,starting with White Africans (of European origin) and then Arab Africans (of Oman origin), when you're done with that, move to Australia and deport all White caucasian Australians (of England origin),do the same in America by deporting White caucasian Americans (of European origin), seriously, does this logic have any morality? I say, leave Congolese Tutsi alone!!! Even Moise Katumbi whose Father is an Israeli, he doesn't get much hate speech attacks on his origin!!!!!

Anonymous said...

Excellent analysis!

Rich said...

Bruce –

Well said as always and I could not agree more with you.

Let me start by saying, this analysis by Maria & Judith gives a rare insight into one of the biggest challenge for the DRC. We have to remember that problems with the DRC’s defence & security sector started someway back in the late 1970s early 1980 with the FAZ being unable to quash a rebellion by the ex-gendarmes Katangais who managed to occupy Kolwezi (the economic power house of the DRC) & most of the Lualaba territory in 1976 for 30 days & for 6 days in 1977. If it wasn’t for the intervention of French Legionaire and other armies from countries such as Togo, Morocco, Senegal, the Mobutu was going to lose the then Shaba province currently Katanga.

We saw a similar thing nearly happened in 1984 with operation Moba 1 when the well-trained 311th Batallion (around 500 men) from the 31st Brigade Parachutistes Zairois (around 4,200 men) based just outside Njili airport in Kinshasa were deployed around Moba (November 1984). After 7 years of training (Started in 1977 after the second war of Kolwezi) posts of section commanders occupied by French instructors were given back to Congolese officers. However, there were French advisors at the levels of Captains Unit commanders & majors battalion commanders. Motorised back up (from Kamina) to the parachuted battalion did not arrive after 21 days (they blamed the raining season) luckily the paratroopers were able to recapture the city within two days with only minor casualties (1 dead and 10 wounded). The whole operation took 6 months and never really worked according to plan. This is to say that if it wasn’t for the French instructors and advisors who supervised the operation, the FAZ were never going to be able to finish the job.

Now my question is, if in 1984 when the army was almost not infiltrated to the level it is now and that the basic were there, things never quite worked according to plans, how much more difficult can they be now that the army is infiltrated and there is a clear intent to constantly undermine its restructuration by outsiders (Rwanda)?

In other words, I’d like to say, things are very very difficult and it will be misleading to assume that the solution to this problem is an easy one. I do have some ideas but that's another debate.

Rich

Anonymous said...

Rich,

Thanks for this objective input. Reading from History, Congo, then Zaire and DR Congo lately has never been able to secure its borders without the assistance of mercenaries or intervention from UN. You can even go back just after the independence in 1960, the Katanga session was stopped by Belgian mercenaries. That is why I agree, that the solution is not what the 2 academics are proposing. Soldiers are firstly citizen of a country. They have same aspirations as civilian citizen. The single biggest problem is the one of a true national identity.If you send Katangese soldiers to fight against an aggression coming from Zambia in Katanga, they will be ready to give the ultimate sacrifice there, than they are now for the KIVUS.

Anonymous said...

@ rich please share you ideas. you can email me at lashcouture1@gmail.com. will love to hear from you. regards

Anonymous said...

Please, M23 is not only Tutsi rebellion. All ethnics from East of Congo are in M23. M23 is a group of people who is fighting because the actual government is sleeping dancing and sleeping only. Don't put the Congo problem at the top of Rwanda. Put out Kagame in your mind.
As Kagame said Congo's problems are there from colonialism till now. I believe that the moment is arriving to solve all problems congo met in the past. The way the government is using to fight M23(hate Tutsi, xenophobic ..) is very very bad and Kabila can not wean. M23 is the hope of DRC. Join, support their vision, mission and value

Anonymous said...

Iam just suprised to read what was written by a PHD candidate and onother expert which did not take into consideration the situation prevailing on the ground.
I want to inform the autor of this article the following
01. M23 is not interested in any offer by the government, the aim of M23 IS TO DEFENDE THE RIGHTS OF THE PEOPLE. This beeing said , they do not need any governement or military position to do so.
02. The hatred that you people have for Rwanda should not impair your capacity of thinking.
03. THE PEACE ACCORD YOU SUPPORTED( sO cold international community was not implemented and you do not mention it and you don't care!
04. You want every body to beleive your stories as results of reserach and analysis... It is so unfortunate that you are the one dictating the conduct of our weak leaders who are only after money like you!!!

Anonymous said...

Rich

I look back to the appointment of Matata Mponyo as PM and the positive reception that decision had in international capitals. There seemed to be a positive momentum as the government began to look forward to dealing with pressing social issues, infrastructure development etc.

Suddenly there is a spontaneous eruption in the Kivus...mutiny by disgruntled soldiers (ex-CNDP), talk about broken promises...one pretext after another to derail any forward progress by the new PM.

International pressure to arrest Bosco Ntaganda may have triggered the crisis, but from Jason's reporting we know events had been planned for some time...the timing of the rebellion was simply moved forward.

I look forward to hearing you ideas on possible solutions.

Bruce

Anonymous said...

@rich

This army's problem goes back to the sixties when congolese army was fighting the Mulele rebellion. You have probably seen these footages when military cars were going to battlefield in cars ready to flee when just one bullet was fired by the other side. This is not to say that our soldiers are that bad. In Rwandan military circles, they know well that the problem with congolese military is the officers commanding troops.
Back in 1999, one Rwandan instructor told me this : "the problem with congolese soldiers is difficult to understand. We train them here in Rwanda at Bigogwe camp and from what I know, they are physically stronger than ours. Should we organize a competition at Bigogwe, congolese will earn all the prizes because they run fast, walk longer. But when it comes to psychological stress, they are among the weakest. They won't withstand hunger, rain and are the first to ask for taking a rest. These things are pretty manageable by competent officers, because under the command of our best officers, they perform better than our soldiers.
Luckily for us, their leadership is the worst. I still love these people because my wife is a congolese from Kasai".
I am the guy who reported the battle of Bukavu when Mbuja Mabe soldiers overrun CDNP and luckily I know one or two more things on the FARDC.
Under good command and with supplies in food and ammunition, they will defeat whatever army. The RDF know this very well and Kabila as well. In my opinion, Kabila is always rooting for the defeat of FARDC, not because he is for Rwanda but rather because he believes that a strong FARDC will end his regime. There are several very competent congolese high rank officers. Since these guys are feared both by Kabila and RDF, they are either physically eliminated or rendered ineffective.
Do people know why Mbuja Mabe was relieved from duty after his success against CNDP? Rwanda asked for his removal and Kabila agreed because the guy had become very popular and could end his grip on power.

Anonymous said...

Rich,

You have done a very nice comparison between the state of the army during mobutu era and during Kabila era. But I think you should also make the parallel between Mobutu regime and Kabila regime. The same causes producent the same effects.

Mobutu started to fear the army and moved it from defending the country to defending his regime. He removed good soldiers because they did not seem loyal enough to him, he created the division special presidential that he cuddled and left the regular army perish. The analysis from these researcher could be applied to Mobutu army as well.

Kabila is having the mobutu syndrome and he is doing the same things and regarding the army he added his special touch "the Rwandese rebel brassage/mixage/integration " ....

During elections many soldiers from Kasai, Equator, all congo regions suspected to not be pro Kabila disappeared. The Groupement special de security presidential is just another DSP. Promotion based on origins instead of competence is the norm. Soldiers who despite all of that want to fight are not fed and not given amo!

Kabila regime as mobutu regime in the past does not promote excellence and love of the country. For Kabila notion like patriotism or building a nation are extremely vagues and fuzzy concept. But you know what , we don't care of his level of ignorance, we want him to deliver and stop with excuses!!!!!!!

The main cause is the lack of political leadership to have a true army. Mobutu did not have, Kabila does not have this will. So now that we know the causes, and the consequences of not having an army, what to do?

I don't trust the "its difficult rant", I prefer the " it is challenging, these are the cause and let's address them". And that is where Kabila cannot do something. addrdsing the cause means addressing his lack of competence, the crisis of legitimacy, restoring the link between the country and its army, and making congolese feel comfortable enough in their own country so that they accept to "wa mpo na ekolo", now they have the impression that they will "wa mpo na Kabila".

This crisi is a lot more deeper than the simple failure of the army. It is the failure of a way of doing politics in Congo. Congo need to be a normal country with a respectful government that allow every fringe of the population to exprim itself in accord with the constitution. Kabila should rally around him instead of chasing Diomi, UDPS and keeping opponent in prison under fallacious present. All these resources could serve the country instead of himself.

What the catholic church is doing means that population have lost faith in Kabila and want to show him that the population is there and standing. It should have been Kabila who should have called for this march.....and if it was how many people would have responded to Kabila call?

PK

Anonymous said...

@Anand @ AnonymousAugust 2, 2012 7:01 AM, you raised extremely good points.

Mitterand said once, there is nothing worse than Democracy, but except that what else to do?

PK

Anonymous said...

@ PK, you don't get it do you. Kibila is not on our side (Congo), he is looking after his own interest, that is why many people are saying is the number one problem, Congolese people need to find a way of removing him

Anonymous said...

Ano 7:35 , reading PK carefully i dont think he is a pro Kabila.... read him carefully.....

Patrick said...

@PK
"It has been said that democracy is the worst form of government except all the others that have been tried". This is from Winston Churrchill and not François Mitterrand.
Regarding the overall conversation, whether or not J Kabila is good for Congo is not the issue for the time being. He is the only one in charge at the moment until virtual or real coup takes place !!
I would have liked to see him move to North Kivu with 2000+ reliable soldiers, properly fed, motivated and supplied to fight M23. He gives the impression of being a king without an army.....

Anonymous said...

Is someone have a copy of a document write by Steve Hege " -Understanding the FDLR in The DR Congo-Fact-Sheet-". FYI Steve Hege is a member of the GoE and who have submited the report about the Rwanda support to M23. Or the background of the other members of that team.
Luckson

Anonymous said...

congolese are cowards and all that they put first is food, money and wives. and such a person can not win a battle so plz do blame them thats how they were created. for those of Tutsi origin i understand their cause; first, because of the greedy tendancy of some other clans backed by FDLR their proprty were rooted and others forced to remain in refugee camps. for rwandans, they do not hate congolese at any point, rwandans like foreigners but hate any who would try not to respect them so if congolese think their issues will be solved by hatrade against rwandans, they have problems. the first weapon is the mindset and it is now clear that rwandans have come to know that they are not liked at some point this mindset is so helpful. why do u think israel manages to stay on world map? its the mindset. do not calculate wins based on the 1% of the population even if its less than once there is a clear reason for the fight the so called minority will win.

Anonymous said...

@Anonymous August 2, 2012 11:00 AM,

your posts shows that you a pro-Kabila Congolese disguised in a Rwandan, and a Hutu disguised in a Tutsi. Your intention is to make every one here passionately hate the Tutsi. Rwandans, and Tutsis in the region have much respect and are very grateful to the Congolese people of all tribes.

Anonymous said...

@Lucskson,
Hedge(GoE coordinator) and friends tried to erase all proofs of the existence of that document in vain:


http://www.scribd.com/deleted/26242651

Smart guys had already copies: Here you go:

http://www.innercitypress.com/hege1underFDLR.pdf

It is not that long before he officially quits and let some else conduct fair investigation.
Hege's case open my eyes on how Tutsi haters are not only fellow Africans; the "ideology" is making its way into Europe and America.

Anonymous said...

I think what should be happening in the short-term:
(i)The Commander-in-chief, should announce a new package of allowances for the gallant soldiers of our nation.
(ii)The allowances should be transferred to their bank accounts-E-mobile.
This will kill the bureaucratic corruption that is endemic.

(iii)Artists...Yes, Big names should be encouraged to produce music/Art that will motivate Kivutiens.
This might sound insignificant but its very powerful.

According to sources, the British are to supply battle meals/rations ASP.

Rutshuru/London

Anonymous said...

The UN security council has again asked Rwanda and Uganda to stop supporting and arming the m23 terrorists,this was a good thing but I think the security council shall just ask Ugandan Dictator YOWERI MUSEVENI and Rwandan dictator PAUL KAGAME aka AFRICAN HILTER to pull their troups out of the CONGO and to stop supporting terrorist groups like the m23, to deliver wanted war criminals like BOSCO THE TERMINATOR NTAGANDA to the ICC,to free pro democracy activist VICTOIRE INGABIRE(the OUNG SANG SYUKI of Rwanda)and all journalists and freedom activists,to start real reconciliation ,and to allow freedom of assembly,and to abolish all apartheid like lows and rules that only fervor the Ruling tribe and have driven the majority of the Rwandan and Ugandan people out of all opportunities and into deep poverty.
Rwanda and Ugandan meddling and criminal activities in the great lakes Region have resulted in the death of over 5 million people,displaced millions more and if not stopped now it will became the worst war crimes and crimes against humanity of the 20 th and the 21 centuries. Dictators PAUL KAGAME and YOWERI MUSEVENI have to be stopped now.

MOPAO

Anonymous said...

Was just wondering since Kagame took office in 1996, even though at the beginning he tried to have a semblance of hut backing by having Bizimungu as a predisent and Kagame vice-president. Kagame or its surrogate tutsi rebellion are responsible of the death directly or indirectly of more than 6 millions congolese and hutu.

During this time, how many tutsis have been killed?

Kagame, Museveni who are both tutsis, and their backed militia are doing ethnic cleansing in Kivu and after they wonder why people don't love them.

What is dangerous is that the poor tutsi lambda thathas nothing to do with this ideology and who is suffering to make a living is by default associated to Kagame and Museveni.

Tutsi are used by Kagame and Museveni as Hitter used Germany to foster his racist ideology.

Kagame has never best deserved his nickname of Great Lakes Hitler. For now on that is how I will call hin.the great lakes hitter responsible of millions of deaths thanks to the backing of the international community that is still weeping for 94 genocide.

More blood ahead, Kabila will be overthrow and it will be a very difficult time ahead for the tutsi rolling inteligentsia of the great lakes....

Congoman said...

@ Ruchuru/London
I totally agree with you ,I think the electronic transfer is the only affective way to stop some corrupt officials from stealing the soldiers salaries,and this should also be used for all government workers but not only the Army. Monusco is reinforcing and sending It's elite troups to the region .and I heard the American trained FARDC under new leadership are now been deployed to the region .also more former CNDP are deserting in south Kivu and many are on the run and are unable to reach the m23 ,this is a good news because there's now less trators amongst the Army and this is a moral booster for many soldiers. I hop they start replacing all those former rebels stil in Commanding posts with thpe well educated former EFO kananga soldiers.and I think many hardened freedom fighters from groups like the RAIA motomboki have proven to be ready and willing to sacrifice for the nation and i don't see the reason why they shouldn't be recruited,retrain and put under Commanders that they trust. Unlike the late KATUMBA MWANKE ,J KABILA sims less ideological and he shall learn from his mistakes,he can keep his presidential guard the way it is ,but the rest of the Army has to be reformed and more integrated. I agree with the ano.who said that someone from south Kivu is more willing to give the ultimate sacrifice to defend his state than someone from Katanga,I think that's just human nature and the RAIA MOTOMBOKI are a good example.I think even General MBUJA MABE said this .if for example there is an atack on MATADI by the Angolans ,we need to have battalions of majority Bas Congoles who are more familiar to the region and will more likely sacrifice for it. I know this may sound a little controversial but with a big integrated army this will be more affective.

Anonymous said...

As a Rwandese, I would want to tell congolese that it is not all Rwandese who back Kagame policy. Some of us are aware of the dangerosity of its Congo political but what can we do?

So please make a difference tutsi who want to live in peace as any human being and Kagame and Co who are fighting for their own ideas and agenda. They can claim day and night that they want to protect tutsi but they have never involved us in any concertation.

Anonymous said...

@congoman, you are totally disconected from reality, and you give the impression of blogging from you room in US or Europe.

You seems loving Congo but I wonder why you don't want to address real causes, in your mind calling for kabila removal seems like a read line to not cross. To me you should be torn between the seriousness of the situation and your loyalty for Kabila. Maybe yourself of a parent should be in Kabila entourage.

Us trained troops are already in Goma, MONuSCo special forces from Jordan and co are already in Goma. You are praising May-May but you should ask yourself why are they out of the army, they should have been integrated the same time as cndp. But they have been sidelined by kabila and its rwandese friends. May Mayrealised the brsssage was a big jokes. So it is again kabila first responsible of this farce that you want Mayi Mayi to approach. If Kabila wanted to use Mayi Mayi , he could have done that long time ago for balancing the power of exCNDP.

Nothing good, will come from Kabila he is the architect of the current situation, asking people to trust him again is very, but very , but extremely difficult to imagine. He Is unrepentant, how many time have you seen him in Goma?

And the group from Gasp should be sent to front line. They only show their force for crushing congolese on the street of Kinshasa they should participate as all other corps of the army.

Kabila is a big joke.

Anonymous said...

Hi all,

The imminent battle of Goma (the martyr) is going to upset all principles and values that the UN stands for ,and seriously challenge the authority of the UNSC and the influence of the USA on despots Kagame and Museveni. If Kagame and his M23 militia ignore the world’s call to stop this his senseless war, cross the rubicon and invade Goma, then we are in for the repeat of the humiliation of the US army by Mohamed Farrah Aidid in 1993 in Somalia. If the UN cannot preserve its dignity and credibility that Kagame and Museveni are undermining in Congo, where else will it? The Goma battle is the real acid test of the leadership of the USA.

muanacongo

Anonymous said...

@muanacongo you are one of the other dreamer of this blog , calling for monusco,USA and not for Kabila is just accepting that Congo is the weakest country ever. Start for calling on your own president, I don't see why we should die for you, die for yourself.

Anonymous said...

I don't understand you guys, why do you involve Kagame and Museveni in Congolese problems?

My brothers congolese, we can put of these 2 presidents, their have their countries, they are developing their countries and they have peace. Us, we may think about tomorrow and explain clearly to the international community the problem of Congo. But to know the problem of East, is to sit with the community born and grow there and go in roots to come up with the exact problems of Kivutiens, inclunding all etnics of Kivu. If we don't think in this way, the war will not finish in Kivu I am telling you.

Anonymous said...

Les DEMULU VENTARES on trahi les congolais.they are supporting kagame.

Anonymous said...

I didn't know that Kabila was a DEMULu vantard as he is the main support of Kagame in Congo

Anonymous said...

@AnonymousAugust 3, 2012 2:12 AM

Kagame and Museveni are part of Congo problem because they are arming their ethnic brothers the tutsi for killing in Congo.

Do you understand now why they are part of Congo problem or do you need a picture ?

Anonymous said...

The situation is just starting to get out of control.

http://www.chimpreports.com/index.php/news/5339-breaking-congolese-flee-to-kasese-as-rebels-overran-mpondwe.html

That is exactly what the likes of Steve Hege, HRW, Monusco and and all the multitude of great lakes region experts wanted. They have achieved their goals; Now that an other crisis is open in DR Congo, millions of $$ will flow in in terms of humanitarian aid, paid consultancy fees; Monusco is guaranteed of an other 2 years term. Here we are talking about multi-billions dollars flowing through those westerners present on the ground. This is business at work. Please congolese open your eyes and see who are your real friends.

Anonymous said...

I don't think that the M23 is the best military for Congo because they will defend us against whom. Themselves? Rwanda? They cannot even move from Masisi or Rutshuru near the border of Rwanda. We all know that Rwanda is the serious security challenge of Congo and if M23 cannot be able to participate in resolving it I do not see for what they will be useful to Congo. They defend courageously Rwanda's interests, fight Rwanda's ennemies in Congo even against Congo's interests that they are the best soldiers of Rwanda in DRC.
What we need in Congo is a non ethnical army, dedicated to defend Congo's interests. M23 cannot answer those criteria and they have been labelled by the CIRGL as negative forces like the FDLR. Kagame signed that document.

Anonymous said...

Here I come, my fellow citizens. I have been following your debating here for a long time and I think it is my duty to bring my contributions too in order to make possible a better and prosperous, stronger/strongest Congo. We have got problems in our country and the most dangerous is coming from Rwanda and all of us know that. How to deal with that problem? How can we defeat Rwanda? Who is/are responsible of the current situation? They are interesting questions but I would like to invite you to think seriously about these considerations:
1. The objective of the DRC is not only to defeat Rwanda but what are we going to do next? Are we going to go back to business as usual? Is that what is going to make DR Congo stronger, more prosperous and able to deliver to its citizens?
Of course Rwanda must be and will be defeated (when I say Rwanda, I am focusing on Kagame and its followers in Rwanda and in Congo). Till here Congo has been saved because of its geography and the diversity of its populations but I would like it to become stronger by what we Congolese we do. Since our founders (this goes back to Leopold II), our objective as a nation is to transform the potentialities of this land to benefit peoples. The difference has always been the content of the “peoples”. For us, the peoples are Congolese peoples who must be the first beneficiaries of these riches. So what are we doing to ensure that? As you see, it requires determination, guts and dedication and we, as a nation, we have all the capacity to reach those goals and that leads us to the following.
2. We, as a nation, are masters of our destiny. We have to count first on ourselves, on what we can and have to do. We have to make sure that our elected leaders understand and do their best to fulfill our ambitions as a nation and we have the capacity of requiring them to be responsible and accountable. The question now is not who is in power but what is he doing with that power and we have to make sure that he understand the responsibility coming from being elected and representing a whole nation, ours. It is for the first time that we have had Rwanda in such a difficult situation and it means that people in our Government are working and moving in the right direction. But, we all know that this is not enough because Rwanda has not yet been defeated and Congolese people are still dying, displaced and punished for being Congolese and that regardless of the tongue they speak. In Rutshuru, for instance, people feel more secure with the FARDC because they understand that those fighting the latter do not represent the interest of Congo, their interest and that is why they are fleeing away from them, even if they can speak the same tongue. As a nation, we must learn how to punish those betraying the nation, betraying us and that regardless of their origins. There are people in Congo who think that their personal/individual interests, ambitions, successes are more important than those of the whole nation, of our country and those people are unpunished and that is our great weakness, mistake. If a Congolese Tutsi loves this country and understand that his interests are well protected with the DRC and not with Rwanda, that is a good thing and they must not be rejected. If a Congolese Teke thinks that he is well off even if Congo is sacrificed through the process, he must not walk away unpunished. We have the duty, responsibility of protecting ourselves. We can stand as a people and foster our goals and it is not a single individual, be them Kabila or Kagame, who will stop us from moving forward. I know that elected representatives have the obligation of doing their best to do their part of the job because they have been elected for that end. Of course, we have to appreciate and thank all people and countries of good will helping us and their input is necessary but we must not be dependent on that in order to survive as a country.

Anonymous said...

3. We have also to make sure that our best elements in the nation are promoted to posts of responsibility in order to make sure that good decisions are taken for the country and its citizens. We must take care of people serving, defending our country. It is abnormal to sacrifice them without compensation. They must know that there is benefit siding with the Republic, fighting against our enemies and defeating them. How much money and riches have been stolen from Congo? How much is needed to equip and take care of our defense and security people? Who are those people amongst our leaders who think and act as their fate is more important than that of the whole nation? We must stop also recruiting incompetents in our armed and security forces and punish severely those who weaken us in every way. We have to stand and fight for our country, nation and future. This is our country and it is the only one we have and we must show that we deserve it. We have also the responsibility of protecting and promoting the prosperity of our countryside countrymen. It is our responsibility, our duty. We are equipped to succeed in this world and we have already lost many countrymen because of the unconsciousness of some of our countrymen ready to betray the nation as a whole. I am very convinced that only military might and it must be Congolese, will end the problems we face in the east. Whatever we can do must be done in reinforcing our military might. Rwanda is not the only security threat, challenge we will have to face in our triumphant march forward and after defeating Rwanda (what I deeply believe we can because in our current state we have not been defeated by Rwanda) we will still have other security challenges, threats as that is nature.
4. I have got other final questions: why have we sacrificed more than 6 million countrymen? Was not our responsibility to stand for them? Had we fought, could have we lost so many persons? We must fight for our freedom, our future, and our prosperity in order to deserve and cherish them.
I have said all this knowing that there are still unresolved questions/problems in our midst but the priority is to stop and defeat Rwanda. As long as Kagame will be in Rwanda, we will not have peace in DRC. Beside the IC genocide’s guilt, the other things which allow Rwanda to bother Congo are its diplomacy and military might. We have seen that the first can be defeated or forced to retreat so the only argument which guarantees Rwanda’s power of nuisance is the military might and we, as a nation, have to respond to it victoriously. Anyhow, we do not have any other choice. Trying to resolve those problems in Congo is a mistake because it is our people who are dying, our resources who are looted, our women and girls who are raped and our environment which is destroyed and our development stopped, disrupted. We have to focus on Rwanda, study our enemy, understand his mindset, force him to change his bad behavior. We have to move ahead of the events and prepare the future. We have also to read a lot because in books we have answers to many of our questions. Do not limit ourselves in commenting news but we have to change them and the way they are narrated. We all know the future we want, we are promised based on our possibilities and we have to move forward in fulfilling it. We have to act and translate into actions, realities our deep beliefs.

Anonymous said...

@Anonymous August 3, 2012 5:14 AM; Just hold on a bit; m23 is just that visible piece of iceberg; more actors are coming into the picture soon. The song Kabilists are singing today will end shortly. What if Kisangani falls next week? Will this be M23? Gbadolite and Mbandaka are also buoying as per the information I am getting from there. Have you heard General Munene's interview with RFI? The crisis is not a military one; there is a serious political crisis going on; and legitimacy of the current regime is the one disputed by almost all influential political leaders and the majority of Congolese. Otherwise how can you you explain that in a city of 8 milions(Kinshasa), only 100,000(accepting the exaggerated number from government sources)responded to the call to march against the war in Eastern part? Kabila regime is going to fall with or without the support of international community. This is the will of Congolese people. They demonstrated this last November when elections were rigged with the help of UN mission.

Anonymous said...

KABILA DOIT PARTIR

Anonymous said...

It does not matter what the International community wants, Kabila has a less than two months window to negotiate with M23 unless he want to negotiate his conditions exile in South Africa.

Anonymous said...

@ the M23 have tabled a new condition before negotiations can take place, Kabila must resign. it's clear that the curtain is falling down on the current regime. I said it before enemies are coming together to bring down a common enemy. It's over for Kabila

Anonymous said...

Gaddafi dreamed to be the King of Africa,Museveni wrote to the US alleging that he feared Gaddafi was out to assassinate him by bringing down his plane:-) Now,Museveni is being praised as a key ally to the US, Museveni's role in invading Somalia,in helping South Sudanese,mediating on the Great Lakes,in fighting Aids,in fighting LRA, all of these will 'earn' Museveni all the applaud from the US Government,King of East Africa,H.E Yoweri Kaguta Museveni:

http://allafrica.com/stories/201208030999.html
Clinton is scheduled to meet Museveni on Friday and visit a military base where she will be briefed on the hunt for Kony and efforts to stamp out the Shebab Islamist militants in Somalia.

She will also visit a health centre and address human rights activists.

The State Department official said Clinton would compliment Museveni for his role in the fight against AIDS but encourage him to open up more space for democracy.

During his increasingly autocratic quarter-century in power, one of the main feathers in Museveni's cap has been his progressive approach to combating AIDS. He spearheaded a campaign that reduced Uganda's prevalence rate from more than 20 percent to around seven percent.

But a leaked US diplomatic cable accused Museveni, who won re-election to a new term in February 2011, of "autocratic tendencies" that "could relegate Uganda to the list of unstable African nations"

Anonymous said...

Hi Maria and Judith, I didn't see your proposal for a way out to this new crisis in the Kivus due to the non respect of the M23 Peace Agreement as now all armed groups are back again and the FARDC are corrupted from up to the bottom and notoriously known as first source of insecurity coountry wide, and the Kabila regime has no legitimacy and the MONUSCO mandate is only the protection of civilians.What do we do now of those all M23 rebels spreaded from North Katanga up to Ituri?

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