Who is Bosco Ntaganda? The tense security situation in North and South Kivu provinces in Congo has turned the world’s attention to the infamous Congolese General, also known in the region as “The Terminator.” Incongruously, he’s been called both a war criminal and a lynchpin to regional stability; yet as a member and leader of several armed groups, he has left a bloody trail across the eastern Congo.
Most shockingly, juxtaposed against scenes of violence, mass rape, and civilian displacement is the comfortable, privileged life Ntaganda once lead in the capital of North Kivu. For years he thrived in Goma, dining in the finest restaurants, occupying a luxurious villa just yards away from the Rwandan border, and moved with impunity as he raked in a fortune from exploitation of the region’s illicit minerals trade—all within sight of the world’s largest peacekeeping mission.
Until recently he was a member of the Congolese Army, however, under still murky circumstances Ntaganda along with some of his most loyal troops have defected from the Army and retreated to his traditional stronghold north of Goma in the North Kivu province of eastern Congo. These actions have precipitated uncertainty and crisis throughout the region.