There has been a lot of comparison recently between the current refugee crisis in the Middle East to the plight of refugees during World War II.  The twentieth century had another major crisis that is often overlooked, however:  the flight of refugees from Rwanda and the Congo during the mid-1990s.  This crisis produced more refugees than any event since World War II, and they trekked through some of the thickest jungle on Earth to escape violence and advancing armies.  Join Katie and Averill as they discuss the plight of these Central African refugees.  It’s a story that has echoes through to today.

Rwandan refugee camp in eastern Zaire, 1994

Rwandan refugee camp in eastern Zaire, 1994, Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons

Show Notes and Further Reading

David van Reybrouck, Congo: The Epic History of a People, Harper Collins, 2014

Jason Stearns, Dancing in the Glory of Monsters: The Collapse of the Congo and the Great War of Africa, PublicAffairs, 2012

The Borgen Project, “Ten Facts About Democratic Republic of the Congo Refugees”

European Resettlement Network, “Congolese Refugees”

Frontline, Ghosts of Rwanda, Interview with Alison des Forges

Alison des Forges, Leave None to Tell the Story1999

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Related Posts


George McGovern and the Elusive Christian Left

While today, press coverage treats Christianity’s alignment with political conservatism as a foregone conclusion, there is a larger milieu of liberal and progressive activism with Christian social justice. Join Averill and special guest Mark Lempke, Read more…


Puritan Sex: The Surprising History of Puritans and Sexual Practices

We have an image of puritans as cold, severe, hyper-strict and religious people, and while that’s not entirely false, it’s also not entirely true. From the very beginning, Early Americans were thinking about sex. The courts Read more…


Selling Sex: 19th Century New York City Prostitution and Brothels

In 19th century New York City, sex was for sale and it wasn’t hard to find it. Commodified sex was everywhere and available for any price. The years between roughly 1850 to about 1910 were the years that Read more…