Madame Agathe

Lorne Clarke & Tom Flannery
Lingua: Inglese

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© 2004 Tom Flannery and Lorne Clarke
a production
Clarke & Flannery love to hear your thoughts on the song cycle. Email them to

rwandaThis is not a history lesson. We're not historians. We're songwriters. And anyway... how the hell is anybody going to explain the systematic state sponsored slaughter of close to a million people with a handful of songs? We're not.

Truth is, there is no explanation for the Rwandan genocide. What there is in abundance, however, is ignorance. If these songs make just one person dig a little deeper, then we've made our money back, so to speak. We've touched upon specific pieces of the horror, but don't even pretend to be able to understand it from the Rwandan point of view. We're observers from afar. Interested, heartbroken observers....but merely observers nonetheless. Please keep that in mind.

All of these songs are solo acoustic performances...recorded live with a digital 8 track studio in Northeastern Pennsylvania. The full lyrics are available, as are the complete recordings in both mp3 and quicktime formats. Notes for each song are provided, giving some insight into the creative process....and explaining where explanations are necessary. The entire project is only available via the internet. There is no "official" CD of this music. This is strictly an "online" project.
This is partly due to economics, but also because once a CD is released, it can't be changed. We're likely to add new songs here at any time.

Individual essays are also posted, because some ideas that we have probably can't be conveyed using the song form alone. These too will probably grow in time. Also, a brand new play by playwright Tom Flannery called Rwandan Eyes is available exclusively here.

Everything here is free. Listen, distribute freely, discuss.

Do everything but steal.

Tom Flannery & Lorne Clarke.


Agathe Habyarimana is the widow of the late, assassinated President/Dictator of Rwanda. There is more than ample evidence to support her indictment as the chief architect of the 1994 genocide. More than enough to convict her of these terrible crimes against humanity.

Yet, after her husband's plane - which was itself a gift from President Mitterand of France - was shot down (under Agathe's orders) and the slaughter began, the government of France sent a "rescue" mission to Kigali and brought Madame Agathe to Paris where she lives today as an honored guest of the people of France.

Rwanda has repeatedly asked to have Agathe extradited for trial - but the French government steadfastly refuses to comply.

France is one of the nations which sits permanently oon the UN Security Council - and exercises full veto powers over its resolutions and actions.

France, the land of liberty, Equality & Brotherhood remains a sanctuary for Agathe - and other murderous criminals (like "Baby Doc" Duvalier) - and the rest of the world just sits on its hands.
Hercules is racing for the border
A blur of camouflage upon the trees
The midwife of the stillborn new-world-order
Bound for sanctuary 'neath the Fleur de Lis

As the balefires of Kigali fade behind her
Her thoughts have turned to Paris in the spring
But she leaves behind a legacy of slaughter
A gift to honor Leopold the King

The first rains of the season are descending
Roadblocks have completely shut the streets
Corpses stacked in windrows never-ending
The air is thick with the stench of rotting meat

Although the best laid plans are often shattered
Madame Agathe has not abandoned hope
She bows her head and prays on things that matter
Thanking God - and Mitterand - and the Pope

At the airport she accepts a sheaf of flowers
A limousine and forty thousand Francs
A gesture from the ones who sit in power
Pockets bulging with the cash from Rwanda's banks

When the people we abandoned call for justice
Will we find our cowardice too much to bear
Can we be surprised that they no longer trust us
When Agathe still walks the streets - and no one cares

inviata da CCG/AWS Staff - 17/9/2007 - 21:59

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