The baby whom the photographer described as "a thoroughly beautiful child" was identified as Dombo. She was the first baby born to the band of troops that had been repelled from Foca where they were living just a few days earlier. Because Dombo had been born when they were under fire and in a state of confusion, the soldiers tended to believe that she was not entirely human. (Whether this ascetic attitude was the reason the baby was born, or whether she was unexpectedly fine and healthy, or a combination of the two, is irrevocably lost to history.) Bechara, the commander of the troops, thought his soldiers might have killed Dombo as they had killed the others. When interviewed, the mother, Abi, affirmed that she did not know whether her child was herself killed and that it was impossible to tell with certainty whether there were others whose fate she knew. The soldiers were ordered to bury Dombo in a shallow grave, a measure that Abi and several others of the village were willing to accept. The arrangement allowed a speedy burial, and as the soldiers moved on, the rest of the joint Rwandan-Burundian force was able to erect a cross and headstone on the site. Dombo, whose name has been lost, is now on display at the Museum of Mankind in Leiden, the Netherlands, and eventually on national television in Rwanda.
A statue of Dombo stands in front of the Protestant church that in 2002 was used as a meeting place for Hutu and Tutsi. The soldiers decided that this was where they needed to be brought together again; but when they were refused access, the only thing they could do was to bury their dead where they lay. Of the total of nearly one million people murdered in the genocide, perhaps half a million died in just this way or in other places where the memory of their deaths quickly rots into oblivion. d2c66b5586