Can The Strongman Make Peace?

The tall, pencil-thin general looks like a man in total control. Though Vice President and Defense Minister Paul Kagame is trading his uniform for suit and tie, no one doubts that the 37-year-old commander of the Rwandan Patriotic Front wields the real power in his homeland. "This country needs to move," he says. "Someone must give it direction."

Westerners have found the Tutsi leader's proud, reserved manner hard to penetrate. But Shawn McCormick, deputy director of African studies at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, thinks the former rebel has peaceful purposes now. "He is a closed, private man who...

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