If the United States cared to pay attention to great examples of crappy foreign policy, it could have easily noticed what hell Belgium wrought in Rwanda during most of the 20th century. Belgian intrigue paved the way for the hatred, persecutions, and massacres that followed their arrival.
During the genocide of 1994, when it would have been wise for someone--anyone--to come to the aid of Rwandans in distress who had asked for outside help, the United States was busy licking wounds sustained from becoming involved in Somalia, a place we were neither needed nor wanted. When our help isn't asked for, we usually cause more problems by jumping into the fray. When our assistance is wanted, we are most often too busy running with our tails between our legs from the effects of our own crappy foreign policy.
For centuries the Rwandan Hutus and Tutsis shared the same culture, the same language, and the same religion, and they lived in relative peace. They often intermarried. In 1916, that all began to change. In that year, Belgium, seeing itself in every way superior to the blacks on the African continent, took control of Rwanda and established a colonial system that ended up being a kettle of racial classification and exploitation.
In a move eerily similar to the British elevation of the Iraqi Sunnis to government domination over the Shia majority, the Belgians placed the minority Tutsi at the head of the Rwandan government, creating massive and deep resentment of the Tutsi among the Hutu majority.
After carefully and constantly stirring up a hornet's nest of internecine hatred, Belgium gave Rwanda its independence in 1959. Control of the country fell into the hands of the Hutu majority, many of which now perceived themselves as morally entitled to settle a score with the Tutsis. What followed were years of segregation and persecution of the Tutsi people, mixed with the occasional round of killing. Rather than suffer persecution and death, hundreds of thousands of Tutsis, along with their moderate Hutu brethren, left their homeland.
By 1988, a critical mass of these expatriates came together to form the Rwandan Patriotic Front, with its main goal of reclaiming their country. In 1990, the RPF began its first foray into Rwanda from their bases in Uganda. The offensive was put down with the help of the Belgian and French military.
Nonetheless, for three years, war and massacre flared. The United Nations eventually stepped in, hoping to broker a power-sharing agreement between the two factions. Reveling in their power, Hutu extremists resisted the United Nations agreement. The result was one of the most horrifying genocides in human history.
What would Rwanda look like today if Western colonizers had not gotten involved in dictating the course of its future? A lot better--just like a lot of other cauldrons of Western social experimentation would have. What changed? The Hutu and the Tutsi lived in relative peace before the white man came.
Prior to the fervent appearance of the Belgian "missionaries", little distinguished Hutus from Tutsis. After Belgium made its imprint on Rwandan culture, that distinction made all the difference. Where once they married each other and laughed and socialized together, now their perverse delight is in killing one another.
Nearly every time the West has gotten involved in colonization or overlordship, the "solutions" they have created have been far worse than the original problems. One would think that intelligent governments could learn from others' mistakes, or even from their own. They haven't. Might it have been planned that way?