Paul Nugent, Executive Director
Southeast Connecticut World Affairs Council
Waterford, CT (August 20, 2021) – The Southeast Connecticut World Affairs Council (SECWAC) announced today that author and journalist Michela Wrong is to speak on the reassessed legacy of Rwandan President Paul Kagame at 4:00 p.m. on Wednesday, September 8, 2021, via Zoom. The virtual presentation is free for members; $20 for non-members. Registration is required.
In the wake of the 1994 genocide, Rwanda under President Paul Kagame has been hailed as a model of a modern African state: spotlessly clean, well-run and scoring impressively on every development index. A new book by writer Michela Wrong titled, “Do Not Disturb: The Story of a Political Murder and an African Regime Gone Bad,” challenges this portrayal, highlighting instead a long history of violence by Rwanda’s ruling Rwandan Patriotic Front and the extraordinary lengths to which it goes to hunt down perceived enemies abroad. She tells the story through the men and women who have known Kagame since childhood, who befriended, fought and worked alongside him only to eventually fall out and be dubbed enemies of the state. The picture she paints suggests a fundamental reassessment of Kagame’s legacy and the West’s relationship with authoritarian regimes in Africa is long overdue. Copies of Wrong’s book are available to purchase via local bookstore Bank Square Books.
Wrong’s presentation is part of the SECWAC 2021-22 monthly Speaker Series. Register in advance at https://scwac.wildapricot.org/event-4438432
Michela Wrong has spent nearly three decades writing about Africa, first as a Reuters correspondent based in Cote d’Ivoire and former Zaire, and then as the Financial Times Africa correspondent, based in Kenya. From journalism, she moved into book-writing. Previous books include “In the Footsteps of Mr. Kurtz”, the story of Mobutu Sese Seko, “I Didn’t do it for You”, focussing on Eritrea, “It’s Our Turn to Eat”, an examination of Kenyan corruption, and “Borderlines”, a novel set in the Horn of Africa. Her latest book, “Do Not Disturb”, is a scathing assessment of the Rwandan Patriotic Front and President Paul Kagame. She is based in London.
SECWAC is a regional, nonprofit, membership organization affiliated with the World Affairs Councils of America (WACA). The organization dates back to 1999, and has continued to arrange at least 8-10 meetings annually, between September and June. The meetings present a range of topics in international affairs, foreign policy and diplomatic history, and are hosted at venues along the I-95 corridor, welcoming members and guests from Stonington to Old Saybrook, and beyond. SECWAC’s mission is “to foster an understanding of issues of foreign policy and international affairs through study, debate, and educational programming.” It provides a forum for nonpartisan, non-advocacy dialogue between members and speakers, who can be U.S. policymakers, educators, authors, and other experts on foreign relations. Learn more at http://secwac.org.
CALENDAR LISTING: Southeast Connecticut World Affairs Council (SECWAC) presents Michela Wrong on Wednesday, September 8, 2021, 4:00 p.m. via Zoom. Free for members; $20 for non-members. Registration is required in advance. Annual membership of SECWAC is $95; $35 for young professionals under 35, and free for students and educators; corporate membership is available for $1,100 (contact SECWAC for details).
The mission of the Southeast Connecticut World Affairs Council (SECWAC) is to foster an understanding of issues of foreign policy and international affairs by study, debate, and educational programming, primarily through a Speakers Series of 8 to 10 monthly meetings.