Across the Red River: Rwanda, Burundi and the Heart of Darkness by Christian Jennings
'When seven Burundian paratroopers booted down the door of my hotel room and arrested me, I was wearing nothing but a towelling dressing-gown. With angry movements of their Kalashnikovs, they gestured to me to get dressed. What, I wondered in that long, slow-motion second before the fear kicked in, do you wear to your own execution? Would the Gap jeans do one more day?' In the summer of 1994, Christian Jennings arrived in Rwanda with an almost impossible mission: he had five days to track down the army officers and government ministers responsible for the slaughter of 850,000 people and persuade them to participate in a TV documentary about their crimes. He had fifteen thousand dollars taped to his thigh, a satellite phone, thirty feet of rope, eighteen litres of mineral water and a good command of French. Nothing in his past - which included service in the French Foreign Legion and a spell in publishing - prepared him for the three and a half years that followed. Across the Red River is an epic account of the terror and beauty of Central Africa, both moving and harrowing in its detail, and frequently appallingly funny.