The Lord's Resistance Army: Myth and Reality
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civilians, would give birth to the very rebellion the NRA/M had expected. It created the conditions for the temporary resolution of the internal crisis through a mutually convenient alliance between the ex-UNLA and Acholi elders oriented towards military struggle against the NRA. Thus, when several thousand ex-UNLA, reorganized as the UPDA, entered Uganda from southern Sudan, they turned to lineage-based authorities as the only group that still held any legitimacy in Acholiland, who in turn gave
development from the colonial days to the present. Here Fithen and Richards’s note on the Revolutionary United Front (RUF) in Sierra Leone also says something about the LRA. ‘Collapse into fatalistic violence and random killing is a development which might have been foreseen by opponents of the RUF,’ they note, ‘had they been less busy denying the movement’s reasons to exist’ (2005: 123). I first encountered an LRA manifesto in 1997, a tattered one-page ten-point programme. Some ten years later,
historian’s viewpoint (Onyango-Odonga 1998). There are basically two strands in the virulent debate about the origin of the conflict. One claims that people from northern Uganda initiated the rebellion in an effort to regain the state power they lost when Museveni captured Kampala in 1986 (Gersony 1997: 14). To recapitulate the argument, two governments led by Ugandans from the north (Milton Obote was from Lango, and Tito Okello was an Acholi) followed in 77 4 · An African hell tain male bias.
increasingly arduous travel’ had come to an end. We were about to meet with Kony, an encounter that The Times made comparable to the famous meeting between Stanley and Livingstone. Given the way the meeting was reported there was an unintended irony in that analogy. Stanley’s account, which helped establish the convention of first-person journalism, was fictional (see, for example, Lindqvist 1997; Dugard 2003; Pettitt 2007). Farmar tells us that after two days of further travel his satellite
were of ages six to seventeen years, and if taken to fight could not easily be shot at because they could easily run in the bushes to confuse the government soldiers.’ A bodyguard to Kony, meanwhile, emphasized their fearlessness: ‘When fighting, everyone does it equally. However, children are strong hearted because they are short. Since you fight while standing, it gives them a chance to fire without fear. But those who are old normally have fear compared to children.’ Other accounts, however,