I’ve written a little bit on the subject of child soldiers in my Africa United movie review and in some other posts in the past, and today I was reminded about it once again by Ishmael Beah. I had to write something after seeing this video; it was just too touching and disturbing at once. A big shout out to Ishmael for sharing it on Facebook and keeping this major international issue fresh in people’s minds. If you ever wondered how the release of child soldiers is negotiated and whether or not these kinds of efforts are ever successful, you should watch this.
And here a some quick facts about child soldiers that will make you think.
Recommended for anyone who loves children, Africa and football (aka soccer), and just anyone who genuinely cares
I watched this film when it first came out and, again, before writing this review. And it wasn’t just to refresh my memory – seeing it for the second time was just as enjoyable.
I should probably post a quick disclaimer right away that my friend, Emmanuel Jal, stars in Africa United, so the first time I watched it was partially to support his work and partially out of curiosity – I wanted to see what he was talking about so excitedly after every trip to the filming locations. I promise you I am not entirely biased toward the movie because it’s good to support your friends… (although it is ;)). But let me get to the gist of it.
Heavens cry, mothers bemoan;
Father and son trade hot metals;
Nations slug out, children at front;
Young minds dance the limbo.
Munition, wars, as toy games;
Battle field as play grounds;
Bullets blow the whistle;
Trenches shield blind shots.
Murder tutorials the course;
Predation, vandalism, an honor;
Grades in white stripes;
Nation wastes her rising suns.
– Chief Charles O. Okereke