Dear Mr. Tisdall — How on Earth? @GuardianAfrica


February 20, 2013 by soniauwimana

Simon Tisdall of the UK Guardian is not on Twitter so I have been forced to email him as if this were 2009.  

Email to:

Subject:  How on earth?

I note you have written another blog post on the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo relying exclusively on Jason Stearns’ already published insights. Who am I to second guess your editors?  Clearly they don’t care what actual Africans think. 

One question, though: on what basis do you assert that the M23 rebel movement is “mostly comprising ethnic Tutsi deserters“?  What is your source for this?  

I live in the region, and have no way of knowing the majority ethnicity of M23, and would be surprised if you have access to such knowledge.  What I do happen to know is that the spokesperson of M23 is, in fact, an ethnic Hutu.  (Someone who happened to know told me as an aside during a conversation).

We can all agree that M23 is mainly, although not exclusively, Rwandaphone, but no-one I have asked (all of whom are far closer to the action than you) can assert with any authority whether they are majority Tutsi or not.  How did it come about that you know?  

Are you blessed with special powers that enable you to gauge ethnic composition all the way from London?  If so, what ethnicity am I?  Do tell. 



Sonia Uwimana


One thought on “Dear Mr. Tisdall — How on Earth? @GuardianAfrica

  1. Mwene Kalinda says:

    Tisdall reminds me of that self-regarding English journalists of old who could write: “Fog in the Channel, Continent cut off!”, or go to foreign lands and consider the locals the foreigners not himself. Such types believe they can pronounce on matters far and near and that knowledge is irrelevant. A slight flaw, of course, in an employee of an entity supposedly in the business of informing, but which has descended into that of pushing manufactured facts.

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