Inside Out 226: Child Soldiers

11.23.11 | Martha Manikas-Foster

For 26 years, children in Central Africa have been have been kidnapped and commanded to kill their families as part of the forced indoctrination into Joseph Kony’s Lord’s Resistance Army. Kidnapped children not impressed into the guerrilla group have become sex slaves to the militants.

Though arrest warrants were issued by the International Criminal Court for Kony and the LRA leadership, the LRA continues to kidnap, mutilate and kill. Once the scourge of northern Uganda, since 2006 the LRA has been accused of widespread atrocities in South Sudan, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Central African Republic. 

But the “new news” is encouraging. First-world technologies--and a lot of hard work--are making a significant impact on the longest-running armed conflict in Africa.

  • Because of radio towers, new to Central Africa, people are able to report LRA troop sightings and attacks to help warn neighboring villages.
  • A new interactive internet map---the LRA Crisis Tracker—now tracks those reports, creating a near-real time report to help predict LRA movements.
  • Radio programming is successfully encouraging LRA troops to defect, letting them know that their villages want them back home.

Join us for an eye-opening conversation with Lauren Bailey, Movement Coordinator for the non-profit group Invisible Children, Inc, the same group that brought the plight of the child soldiers to international attention in 2003. We talk about recent LRA defections, rehabilitation for the soldiers before they return to their villages, and Invisible Children’s support of US President Barack Obama’s October 2011 decision to send military advisors to help in the arrest of Joseph Kony.

Click here to learn more about Invisible Children, Inc., the non-profit started by three Christian filmmakers:

http://www.invisiblechildren.com/

To keep up with the LRA Crisis Tracker, click here: http://www.lracrisistracker.com/

Comments

Your Comments(please keep them on topic and polite)

on 03.08.12 Shari Harmon commented

Martha,
Thanks for shedding light on this subject. I have been seeing posts on Facebook on Kony. I had no idea who he was. Very well done!

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