Hutu vs Tutsi
The ethnic history of Rwanda is very complicated. Rwanda has witnessed several social structures. Tutsi was a thriving aristocracy in Rwanda many years ago. Hutus were wealthy class of people and resembled the aristocrat Tutsi class. Germans while making a census of the Rwanda- Burundi area found that a Tutsi has more than ten cows in his possession and the stunning feature of their face was a long nose. The availability of long nose in Africa was a matter of research and concluded that people came from Ethiopia, which had European descendants.
With the arrival of catholic missions in the African great lake Region, there was a resistance from Tutsi community against conversion. The missionaries were successful with the Hutu. Properties of Tutsis were taken away from them and given to Hutus. This was the beginning of the conflict between the two ethnic groups.
Culturally, Rwanda has a monarchy system of Tutsi monarch, the Mwami. The other area that is the northwestern part is ruled by Hutu society. The rule of the king was demolished after it received independence. Currently there seem to be no cultural difference between the Tutsi and Hutu and they speak the same Bantu language. There were marriages between a Tutsi and a Hutu. The child was reared up as per the father’s culture. The impression is that Tutsi is a class and not an ethnic identity. But there are several dissimilarities in the two groups of societies.
German rulers gave special status to Tutsis as the rulers found them to be superior to Hutus.This earned Tutsis the chance to get educated and find a place in the government. The Hutus were in majority and this special status sparked off conflicts between the two groups. This policy was followed by the Belgians who took over control of the region after World War I. Finally in the year 1959, Belgians changed their stand and allowed Hutus to form the government through proper mandate.
Hutus started taking oppressive measures against the Tutsis and killed numerous people of the particular ethnic group. The tussle went on and several Hutus were also killed in the process. The democratic elections were held in 1993 and a Hutu became the president of Rwanda who was later killed by Tutsi militants. The fight between the Hutu political force and the Tutsi armed forces are in constant war with each other which is the reality of Rwanda-Burundi.
With the independence of Rwanda-Burundi, Hutus and Tutsis started killing each other to get hold of power of the region. With the proclamation of two new countries in 1962, Rwanda was dominated by Hutus and Burundi was by Tutsis and fighting continued savagely. The civil war engulfed Rwanda in 1994 and thousands of people of both the ethnic classes were brutally killed by each other. The killing of the Hutu president by Tutsi militants sparked off further rebellion and thousands of Hutus fled to neighboring countries Tanzania and Zaire.