Child Soldiers in Sierra Leone Essay examples

1484 Words Dec 22nd, 2011 6 Pages
Africa in Cinema- Final Paper

Professor Rice

May 2010

Child Soldiers in Sierra Leone

This semester, the topic of Child Soldiers presented a very interesting dilemma that several countries in Africa continue to face today. Sierra Leone, in particular, has struck an interest because of the many films and readings that try to depict this story of the civil war. In class, we have viewed two films representing the problems with child soldiers in Sierra Leone which include films titled Blood Diamond and Ezra. Both films represent opposite sides of the spectrum, as Blood Diamond shows the Western view of child soldiers and Ezra represents the first African view of child soldiers. Before discussing the two films, there are also two
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The United States, for one, has been reported of providing weapons for the civil war in Sierra Leone for the exchange if these rare diamonds. It is very unfortunate how nations could take advantage of one another even if it is at the cost of the lives of millions of children. Another interesting point presented in this article is the reason for abducting children and their reasons for staying within the organization. Children in richer families in Sierra Leone have the opportunity for schooling and such, but as for the poorer families, children do not have much opportunity for advancement. Children in poorer families often face abandonment by their parents because of economic instability thus creating thousands of street kids who have to find their way of living at an age as early as 4 years old. These street kids are the target for the RUF organization. In order to recruit children, they use a misleading tactic of promising them a better life and the opportunity to take over their lives like never before; by destroying and slaughtering the towns they once lived in. Children who know nothing else are forced to join the RUF as a way of getting out of the street life and into a world of control. In the organization they are promised access to food, water, drugs, sex and most importantly guns. Children between the ages of 8 and 14 are ideal for recruitment

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