Patterns of Instability
Apollo Obote was the first Prime Minister of Uganda.  He was Prime Minister between the years of 1962-66.  He then became the President and served between the years of 1966-71.  Uganda had a peaceful transition into independence in 1962.  The country of Uganda was peaceful and the Prime Minister was a socialist.  Many African nations gravitated to non-western ideas. 

Uganda ended up taking in refugees from Zaire, Sudan, and Rwanda.  By taking on these refugees, it drained their resources and their economy.  Uganda was starting the feel the pressure.  The Prime Minister and President was about the do political battle.  Obote clashed with the President Mutesa.  The issue came over a gold smuggling plot.  Apollo Obote suspended the constitution, removed the President and gained unlimited emergency power.  This is just another example of a coup in a newly formed African nation.

Obote’s coup placed him in power until 1971 when he was a victim of a coup.  Idi Amin (one of the main culprits of the gold smuggling plot) overthrew his ally.  Amin eliminated the Socialist foreign policy and tried to befriend the United States.  Under Idi Amin, many African nations did not recognize with military dictatorship.  Amin was feared and ruled without rules or consequence. Amin gave his cabinet unlimited violent power.  The entire cabinet ruled in the form of a military dictatorship. 

In 1972 Amin change course to gain aid from Libya.  Many of the African nations stopped providing aid and other resources to Uganda.  Amin gravitated to Libya because Libya was willing to provide aid in various ways.  Uganda however had to take an anti-Israeli stance.  Palestinian terrorists high jacked a plane in Tel Aviv.  Amin let the plane land in Uganda to refuel and provide safe haven during negociations.  Israeli commandos humiliated Amin by coming in and killing terrorists to save Israeli citizens.  Amin ruled for a few more years after the 1976 highjacking.  He was forced to leave Uganda.

Like many African nations, Rwana peacefully received independence.  They received their independence  from Belgium in 1962 (Belgium received Rwanda from Germany after WW II).

First President Gregoire Kayibanda (1924-1976) was weak and Corrupt.  He ruled for quite a few years, but was the victim of a military Coup 1973.  The new President Juvenal Habyarimana was elected 3 times 1978-1988. Probably because he was the only candidate permitted to run.  Pressure was placed on Habyarimana and he was forced to open elections in 1990.  He was assassinated in 1994, his plane was shot down.  This started the genocide in Rwanda.

Two ethnic groups lived in Rwanda, the Hutu 84% of population, commoners; and the Tutsi 14% of population, elite.  The Tutsi were privileged under Belgian rule.  While Rwanda was still a colony, in 1959, a revolt sent 600,000 Tutsi into exile.  In 1988 these people wanted to come back home.  They were denied this opportunity.  In 1990 the RPF invaded from Uganda with the hopes of establishing these lost exiles.

In response the Rwandan president identifies the following as enemies to Rwanda:  Ugandan Army, dissatisfied Hutu, unemployed, criminals, Tutsi within country.  People were encouraged and forced to kill as many of these enemies as possible.

Sierra Leone gained independence peacefully in 1961.  Trouble starts in Sierra Leone in 1967.  Siaka Stevens wins the 1967 election and survives a failed coup attempt.  In reaction to the coup, he consolidates all government power, creates a one party system.  He is known to have a corrupt and oppressive administration. 

He has a handpicked successor in Joseph Momoh who leads until 1992.  A coup is lead by non-paid soldiers in which a new leader emerges.  Valentine Strassar a 26 year old soldier becomes the leader of Sierra Leone.  Prior to the coup, Sierra Leone is attacked in 1991 by Liberia over Sierra Leone’s diamonds.  The war lasts until 2002.  It is the value of the diamonds that encourage the war and finance the war at the same time.  If Sierra Leone did not have the diamonds, none of this would have happened.  Because of this war and other circumstances Sierra Leone ranks last in all measures of civilization.

Sierra Leone