Swanee Hunt chairs the Washington-based Institute for Inclusive Security. During her tenure as U.S. ambassador to Austria (1993–97), she hosted negotiations and symposia focused on securing peace in the neighboring Balkan states. She is the Eleanor Roosevelt Lecturer in Public Policy at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government, CEO of Hunt Alternatives, and a member of the U.S. Council on Foreign Relations. She has appeared on CNN, MSNBC, Fox News, and NPR and written for
Bending toward Reconciliation
Over decades or even centuries, women are subjugated; they somehow come forward; they lead reforms, including for their own rights and their families' well-being. Rwanda was no exception. But the lightning speed with which it moved through those stages makes the country a model well worth examining. Part III, “Bending toward Reconciliation” brings out some quieter voices of people who never sought the limelight but whose experiences put them in the vanguard of reunification. Showing selfless courage and driven by a deep sense of greater good, these women rose above their own grief to advance healing in their own villages and towns and justice well beyond their borders. Community mending had to replace endless exile, impunity for war crimes, a spirit of revenge, and deep-seated suspicion. Gender violence had to be criminalized and rape named an international crime of genocide. In each case, led by women, society was transformed.