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The 8 Stages of Genocide

The 8 Stages of Genocide

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The 8 Stages of Genocide

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  1. The 8 Stages of Genocide

  2. Stage 1. Classification • Cultures have categories that distinguish “us and them” by • Ethnicity • Race • Religion • Ex. German or Jew, Hutu or Tutsi

  3. Classification cont. • Bipolar societies lacking mixed categories are most likely to have genocide • Ex. Rwanda

  4. Classification Prevention • Develop universalistic institutions transcending ethnic or racial divisions • Actively promote • Tolerance • Understanding • Promote classifications that transcend divisions

  5. Stage 2. Symbolism • Giving namesor symbols to classifications • Ex. Jews, Gypsies • Names and symbols distinguish by colors or clothing • Does not directly result in genocide unless taken to next level • When combined with hatred • Symbols forced upon unwilling members of pariah groups • Ex. Yellow star for Jews under Nazi rule

  6. Symbolism Prevention • Hate symbols and speech can be legally forbidden • Ex. Swastikas • Group markings can be outlawed • Ex. Gang clothing, Tribal scarring ↘ • Legal limitations will fail if unsupported by popular culture enforcement

  7. Stage 3. Dehumanization • One group denying the humanity of another group • Ex. “Cockroaches” • Overcomes normal human revulsion against murder • Hate propaganda in media used to vilify the victim group

  8. Dehumanization Prevention • Incitement to genocide should not be confused with protected speech • Genocidal societies lack constitutional protection for countervailing speech • Should be treated differently than democracies • Local and international leaders condemn use of hate speech and make it culturally unacceptable

  9. Dehumanization Prevention cont. • Leaders who incite genocide should be banned from international travel and have foreign finances frozen • Hate radio and propaganda should be banned • Hate crimes and atrocities should be punished

  10. Stage 4. Organization • Genocide always organized by the state using militias • Provides deniability of state responsibility • Ex. Janjaweed in Darfur • Organization • Informally • Ex. Hindu mobs led by local RSS militants • Decentralized • Terrorist groups

  11. Organization cont. • Special army units or militants trained and armed • Genocidal killing plans made

  12. Organization Prevention • Membership in militias should be outlawed • Leaders should be denied international visas • U.N. should impose arms embargoes on governments and countries involved in genocide • Create commissions to investigate violations • Ex. Post-genocidal sanctions in Rwanda

  13. Stage 5. Polarization • Extremists drive groups apart • Hate groups broadcasting polarizing propaganda • Laws created • Ex. Forbidding intermarriage, forbidding social interaction • Extremists target moderates • Intimidate and silence centers • Moderates from groups are most able to stop genocide • First to be arrested and killed

  14. Polarization Prevention • Security protection for moderate leaders • Assistance to human rights groups • Seizure of assets of extremists • International visas for extremists denied • Coup d'état (overthrow) by extremists opposed • By international sanctions

  15. Stage 6. Preparation • Identification and separation of victims because of: • Ethnic identity • Religious identity • Death list created • Victims forced to wear identification symbol • Ex. Serial number for Jews

  16. Preparation cont. • Victims segregated into ghettos • Deported to concentration camps • Confined to famine-struck region • starved

  17. Prevention of Genocidal Preparation • If regional alliances or U.N. security can be mobilized: • Genocide Emergency must be declared • Armed international intervention should be prepared • Heavy assistance provided to victim group • Humanitarian assistance organized by U.N. • Private relief groups for refugees

  18. Stage 7. Extermination • Quickly becomes a killing legally called “Genocide” • Called extermination to killers • Do not believe their victims are fully human • Sponsored by the state • Armed forces work with militias to do the killing

  19. Extermination cont. • Genocide can result in revenge killings by groups against each other • Downward whirl-pool cycle of bilateral genocide • Ex. Burundi • Only rapid armed intervention can stop genocide at this point

  20. Extermination Prevention • Real safe areas and refugee camps should be established • Heavily armed international protection • Small genocides • U.N. Security Council should authorize • The U.N. Standing High Readiness Brigade • EU Rapid Response Force • Regional forces

  21. Extermination Prevention cont. • Larger interventions • Multilateral force authorized by the U.N. should intervene • Regional alliances should act if U.N. cannot • If strong nations will not provide troops, they should send • Airlift • Equipment • Financial help

  22. Stage 8. Denial • Surest indicator of genocidal massacre • Perpetrators of genocide • Dig up mass graves • Burn bodies • Try to cover up evidence • Try to intimidate witnesses

  23. Denial cont. • Genocidal perpetrators deny committing crime • Blaming what happened on the victims • Block investigation of crimes • Continue to govern until forced to give up power • Flee into exile • Remain there with impunity until captured and tribunal is established • Ex. Pol Pot, Idi Amin

  24. Response to Denial • Punishment by an international tribunal or national court • Evidence is heard • Perpetrator is punished