Uganda Slayings Were a Message to U.S.

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The bludgeoning deaths of two Intel executives were meant as a message to Washington: Rwanda's murderous Hutu militia is unhappy about U.S. support for the Rwandan and Ugandan governments. In a note accompanying the bodies of eight tourists and four game park officials found hacked and clubbed to death in Uganda's Bwindi Impenetrable Forest Monday, the Interahamwe militia responsible for the 1994 Rwanda genocide warned they would attack Americans and Britons until those countries stopped backing their enemies.

FBI agents arrived in Uganda Wednesday to investigate the killings, whose victims included Rob Haubner and Susan Miller, Oregon-based Intel executives. But with the culprits and motive clearly established, the question is how the U.S. will respond. "This incident is likely to bring home to Americans the murderous nature of the Interahamwe even more than the killing of hundreds of thousands of Rwandans in 1994 did," says TIME reporter Clive Mutiso. "President Clinton visited both Uganda and Rwanda last year, and these killings will likely strengthen Washington's support for those governments." Retaliation against the killers may prove more difficult -- you can't fire cruise missiles at a ragtag militia that has melted into the Impenetrable Forest.