"You know, probably no one will ever know the answer here."
August 3, 2009 9:57 AM   Subscribe

Doubt [print version] is an article by Andrew Rice about Leopold Munyakazi, a professor of French at Goucher College, who has been accused by the Rwandan government of being a genocidaire. His defenders, including the late Alison Des Forges, claim that the Hutu Munyakazi, who's married to a Tutsi, is being targeted by Paul Kagame's administration because he's a dissenter who's challenged the official account of the genocide. Into this complicated affair steps documentarian Charlie Ebersol who wants to profile Munyakazi for his NBC primetime news show Wanted, which has been received with considerable opprobrium and which may already have been canceled.
posted by Kattullus (9 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
The episode of Wanted about Munyakazi may never air.
posted by Kattullus at 9:58 AM on August 3, 2009

I'm a little sad that I know know the word "genocidaire".
posted by eriko at 10:22 AM on August 3, 2009 [2 favorites]

The comments in that last link are interesting and worth following vis-a-vis staging and fakery.
posted by chesty_a_arthur at 10:25 AM on August 3, 2009

I read this over the weekend and found it to be pretty frustrating. Most of what you need to know about the article is in this paragraph:
On the other hand, some aspects of Munyakazi's own account are damning. It doesn't look good that he was issued a gun during the genocide. And his claims that he never witnessed any killing during the period described in the indictment seem doubtful. Scott Straus, a University of Wisconsin professor who has written two books on the genocide, directed me to a reliable report that listed five mass graves containing more than 5,000 bodies found in the immediate area of Munyakazi's home.
"It doesn't look good" ... "seem doubtful" ... "in the immediate area of." That doesn't sound like enough evidence to convict Munyakazi of anything, and yet I felt the piece put these non-facts on equal footing with the research and opinions of several experts who believe Munyakazi is innocent.

Also, I would note in passing that Charlie Ebersol comes off looking like a joke who hasn't been successful at anything besides using his father's connections to his own advantage.
posted by thebergfather at 10:35 AM on August 3, 2009

Interesting. There's a similar story here in Buffalo.
posted by jdfan at 12:14 PM on August 3, 2009 [1 favorite]

Thanks for the link, jdfan, it was a good read. I wonder if this was also Wanted at work: "Last December, a prosecutor from Rwanda showed up at Kabayiza's home with an NBC television news crew. Erie County Sheriff Timothy B. Howard told The News that the NBC news crew and a Rwanda prosecutor contacted him and wanted Kabayiza arrested."
posted by Kattullus at 12:22 PM on August 3, 2009

Did anyone else read the description of the show and think, "What was NBC thinking?" Who ever thought it would be a good idea to make a show about tracking down war criminals "that looks like The Bourne Identity?
posted by inara at 5:16 PM on August 3, 2009

inara, I also wondered what NBC was thinking.
posted by GenjiandProust at 10:51 AM on August 4, 2009

I'm now reading all the links I can find to rants about The Wanted - at least the show has spawned one thing that's enjoyable - some good critiques on television news. Meanwhile I also can NOT believe that NBC actually gave the go ahead for this thing to be produced, much less air'd. Did no one speak up to say that the show was going to be problematic?

So yes, inara, put me down as another "what WERE they thinking?!"
posted by batgrlHG at 12:37 PM on August 4, 2009

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