The Night They Bombed Uvira – Conspiracy Theories

 But the curious thing about an event like this, is how out of place it is, and how other normal things go on all around.  A minimal amount of traffic drove around the streets, no mass movements of military, the occasional ambulance probably making a routine emergency pickup for a heart attack victim.  But still we kept our eyes peeled, me especially as I thought  that I had been left out of the excitement.  But then we started to wonder about what was happening in Uvira.  What had they hit, had there been casualties?

 Then, still only about five minutes after the attack, the lights along the airport road came on.  Conspiracy theorist Jerod started making all sorts of connections; Burundi had instigated the raid and this was going to be the culprit aircraft landing at Bujumbura.  David and I poo-pooed the idea suggesting it was probably just a scheduled landing.  Jerod was sure no planes landed on a Thursday night.  The runway lights came on.  We waited and we waited.  It was a good quarter of an hour when a small prop-plane, its navigation lights flashing dropped out of the sky from the north and landed.  To add to Jerod’s theory, it seemed the formalities in the airport were dealt with quickly and the runway lights, the street lights and the airport building lights were extinguished in minutes.

 Jerod was running on high octane and radioed the warden once more to give him an update.  The warden came round later that evening and looked out with his night vision binoculars (he must have nearly blinded himself when he scanned past a Bujumbura streetlight), but there was nothing to see.  Kelly rose with all the disturbance, she had slept through the whole thing, and, like me, was a little disappointed.

 Nothing more happened that night, but we all went to bed charged up.  David and Kelly were due to go to Uvira to check out the Congo part of the project the next morning, and now, that trip was in jeopardy.  Kelly was still all for it, Jerod was dead against it, suggesting that war could break out at any time.  David was in two minds and again, let Kelly make the decision.  We determined to wait till morning to see what the situation was, phone Uvira and find out some more details.

 Kelly was on the phone and radio well before I rose next morning, and had pieced together some story.  Four Fertiliser bombs had been dropped on the town; one had fallen on a street, two next to some buildings, the fourth had fallen in the lake and not exploded.  No-one was killed but there were some injuries.  There had been no major uprising in the streets, no rioting or looting, and the Congo army had not invaded.  It was an opportunistic raid.  Fertiliser bombs are supposedly the easiest things in the world to make, get a common or garden oil drum, fill with a combination of agricultural fertilisers that are readily available, drop them out of the main door of a small plane and away you go.

 Kelly was keen, almost gung-ho to travel to Uvira, Jerod was set against it.  Both David and I had the same feelings but from opposite standpoints.  I was in many ways relieved not to go, but a bit disappointed that I was not to see Congo for myself.  David was very worried about what he might be walking into, but excited by the challenge.

2 thoughts on “The Night They Bombed Uvira – Conspiracy Theories

  1. The Night They Bombed Uvira – Conspiracy Theories – String Knife and Paper

  2. The Night They Bombed Uvira – Conspiracy Theories – String Knife and Paper

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s