English 1109 Mon/Wed 10:30
October 19, 2016
Journal Seven: R.U.F. Revolutionary United Front
The Revolutionary United Front, also known as the R.U.F. was a rebel army that fought in a ten year war in Sierra Leone. The war started in 1991 and had ended in 2002 which the R.U.F. had lost. After the war, the R.U.F. was made into a political party which had only lasted for almost five years. The R.U.F. was founded by Foday Sankoh, and the entire Mende tribe. Many people living in Sierra Leone favored the R.U.F. at first, with the goals to prevent an “elite Freetown” which was considered corrupt to the civilians. Later, the R.U.F. started to make a reputation for itself for its cruelty toward civilians. They would cut off limbs to intimidate and to spread terror among the population of Sierra Leone. They also recruited children soldiers which is another reason they had such a bad reputation.
Foday Sankoh promised that he would spread the wealth of the diamond revenue gained from mines but then later would break that promise and ended up arming himself with weapons so the R.U.F. could protect the mines containing the diamonds. During the civil war, they had recruited around 11,000 child soldiers to participate, most of these children were used to attack villages or guard the mines. The R.U.F. would make some of the children kill their parents once they joined. Some of the children would have “RUF” carved into their chest, the kids would also have cocaine rubbed into open cuts to make them fearless.
After losing the war, the R.U.F. was made into a political party which would later merge with the “All People’s Congress”
https://www.britannica.com/topic/Revolutionary-United-Front was the best source I had found because it contained all of the useful knowledge to get a basic understanding of the R.U.F.
|This image is a good representation of how the children soldiers had become numb to everything around them as they play with nooses as two people are hung right next to them.|