'This Week': Remembering Rwanda

ABC News' Terry Moran and Ambassador Samantha Power on the 20th anniversary of the Rwandan genocide and current crisis in the Central African Republic.
5:52 | 04/13/14

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Transcript for 'This Week': Remembering Rwanda
in Rwanda, another horror has been unleashed. In is the central Africa republic. Now, as America's U.N. Ambassador she was in Africa to make sure that doesn't happen again. ABC's chief foreign correspondent terry Moran traveled with her. Reporter: In a stadium in Rwanda they held a memorial service this week and it climaxed with a striking moment an image of the genocide that happened here 20 years ago. The crowd hushed. They remembered. They remembered the darkness that came down on this land. A frenzy of slaughter, 800,000 people. Nearly all members of 2 tutsi ethnic group. Men, women and children killed in only 100 days, that's seven murders every minute. By members of the hutu group. Who were their members, colleag colleagues, even their neighbors. 20 years later, the horror is still so fresh for so many survivors that dozens of them broke down during the memorial. In the stands, representing the United States, Samantha power, U.S. Ambassador to the united nations. We caught up with her in Rwanda. Why was it important for you to come here? President Obama wanted us to come back and pay our respects, and show that even if it's 20 years later, this genocide is something that stays with us. Reporter: She won the pulitzer problem for her book "A problem from hell." Now, she's on the inside, a key policymaker and still an advocate. It matters to those people that the world is coming. Because that's the first taunt of the prep traitor. Reporter: Power's trip this weekend wasn't only remembering a genocide she was trying to stop one from happening. We flew with her to the central Africa republic, muslims and Christians killing each other in untold Numbers and the U.N. Warning of the risk of genocide. People huddled in squalor at the airport. Terrified and hungry. As you can see, this is like nothing else. The only way they feel safe is literally be bumping up against the runway. Where the international community can see them. Reporter: Help is on the way. On Thursday back in New York, power joined a vote to send 12,000 peacekeepers to the central Africa republic, maybe it's a sign that the world learned from what happened in Rwanda. Problem from hell can and must be confronted. There's depravity that lies in the human and gets unleashed, that's pretty hard to put back in the box. Reporter: For "This week," I'm terry Moran, ABC news, in Rwanda. And ambassador power is back with us now. Are you confident that this will prevent a genocide? The peace keeping force is what we make it. Right now, we have to go door to door in the international community to commit troops and police. That's hard to do if we don't commit troops ourselves? No, I think the world recognizes that the United States does more than its fair share in keeping peace. And, you know, many argued that we have a moral duty on humanitarian grounds to intervene? What do you say to those who want more? This may be terribly sad, but we should only act when U.S. Security is at stake. Take the central Africa republic, you have the targeting now of the Muslim population. You have retaliatory attacks against Christians. I met a man who had -- a widow of a man who had been doused in gasoline and set on fire in front of her. That matters. I think you can appeal to the heart strings of the American people. Americans are extremely generous. But on the other side, this is a population that can be radicalized. Most of the Muslim population in the central Africa republic have been displaced. In many ways, in your previous life, you were the ultimate outsider, your book is a classic example of speaking truth to power, what has been being on the inside taught you about power and its limits? In order to do the book, I interviewed hundreds of people on the inside. I think it's a fairly accurate portrayal on what it's like on the inside. You never can give up on the inside. Sometimes, with Ukraine and Syria and so many of the crises on our doorstep, this issue, the temptation may be by some, we can wait on that. If you push, and with the president's leadership and his commitment to dealing with these issues we're able to elevate. Have we learned lessons from Rwanda? I think we have come a long way. We're much quicker and we have learned a lesson that you can't make the choice between doing nothing on one hand and sending Marines on the other hand. Ambassador power, thank you very much for your time this

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