Kabila's failure to stop attacks on Rwanda by Hutu militants operating out of Congo angered his erstwhile sponsors, but the last straw came when Kabila ordered Rwandan troops out of the capital and his supporters began attacking Tutsi civilians. "This is an extremely emotive issue for the Rwandans and Burundians given the recent genocide," says Mutiso. "Once Kabila's government began whipping up anti-Tutsi sentiment, Rwanda felt compelled to act." With the battle lines drawn by Kabila's anti-Tutsi purge, Congo's president may wind up with plenty of time to mull over the maxim that you have to dance with them that brung you.
Threats by Laurent Kabila's beleaguered government to strike against Rwanda have the taut tenor of songs of the doomed. "Kabila was brought to power by Tutsi soldiers from Rwanda and Burundi, and those same forces are now setting out to overthrow him," says TIME reporter Clive Mutiso. "This time they shouldn't need longer than 12 weeks to reach Kinshasa."