Terrorism Africa News
East Africa is more accustomed to terrorist groups that claim allegiance or authority from Islam. The Uganda based Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) claims a Christian allegiance. The LRA rebels stated that they fought for the establishment of a government based on the biblical Ten Commandments. Its founder and leader Joseph Kony believes that he is a prophet sent from God to purify the people of Uganda and to create a bastion of peace. Kony originally called his terrorist group Uganda Christian Democratic Army.
The British magazine, The Independent, calls the LRA a messianic movement, reporting that Kony claims “he is visited by a multinational host of 13 spirits, including a Chinese phantom. Former abductees speak in awed terms of his magical powers.”
The LRA leader is wanted by the International Criminal Court to be tried for crimes against humanity.
The United Nations High Commission on Refugees says the LRA has intensified its raids this year. “Since the start of the year, it has received reports of 52 raids by the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA).”
UNHCR estimates that approximately 35 people have been killed, 104 abducted and 17,000 others displaced.
Global Security.Org reports that the LRA has abducted large numbers of civilians for training as guerrillas. “Most victims were children and young adults.” Human rights groups and NGOs place the number of abducted children held by the LRA at least 3,000.
Since they were pushed out of North Uganda in 2005, the LRA has been terrorizing civilians in the DRC (Democratic Republic of Congo), South Sudan and Uganda, hopping over the borders.
In 2009 the US Pentagon’s Africa Command, who had been training the Ugandan military in counterterrrorism, provided 17 advisers and $1 million in fuel for an attack on the LRA in Congo. The offensive only scattered the fighters who then retaliated by killing as many as 900 civilians. Seventeen advisers from the were involved and they provided $1 million in fuel. American officials conceded that the operation did not go as well as intended, and that villagers had been left exposed. According to the New York Times, “American officials conceded that the operation did not go as well as intended, and that villagers had been left exposed.”
View this short documentary film of interviews with Joseph Kony, LRA fighters, and abductees.
Watch these penetrating plea from children, who suffer at the hands of the LRA, asking for help from President Obama. The video is produced by Human Rights Watch.