Posts Tagged ‘Democratic Republic of Congo’

I’d like to say I’m a sweet, nonviolent soul, easily placated who sees the best in every situation, seeks out silver linings and happy to calmly await changes for betterment.

Yeah, that sounds nice. Problem is, it comes nowhere close to accurate in most any description because in fact I’m a right stroppy bitch driven to murderous rages over much of the shit that happens in the world, impatient, intolerant and prone to snap when provoked.

Although more than impressed with outcomes generated by gentle greats like Gandhi and Martin Luther King, I’m incapable of that much cheek turning of the other kind and subscribe more closely to the adage that revenge can work as a deterrent and is a dish best served up cold.

It’s this little quirk that reacts today to a BBC report today out of the DRCongo:

”The rebel leader asked me two things: ‘Do you want us to be your husbands? Or do you want us to rape you?'”

Congolese mother-of-eight Clementine speaks in a quiet and hesitant voice:

“I chose to be raped.”

She explains: “I told myself, if I tell them that I want to be their wife, they will kill my husband. I didn’t want my children growing up saying the one that made our father die is our mother.”

But that sacrifice was not enough. Her husband left her for another woman.

“After they raped me, my husband hated me. He said I was dirty.

Can we count on how many levels this sucks?

Although it’s nice enough for the UN’s “special representative on sexual violence in conflict” to notice the DRC is the “rape capitol of the world”, that doesn’t seem to be doing much to make it stop.

Maybe it’s this story about a fox getting his own that sets me off today, but my vengeful mind has come up with an idea that goes a bit further than charting rape cases and tut-tutting and probably wouldn’t cost any more than those useless activities.

You see, when I read ‘victim’ I tend to think more in terms of keeping numbers of new ones down than keeping count and collecting grim tales. Seems a much better use of time, energy and funds, yet even I stop short of the idea of blasting the bastards to smithereens.

Not that blasting away is a foreign thought since I grew up with guns and am a bloody good shot. No, it’s more the realization that blowing away bad guys doesn’t stop more bad guys from popping up. There’s something sexy in dying in a blaze of glory that draws dudes like maggots to rotting innards, plus a very good chance of collateral damage doing in victims along with the perps.

With all the money going into arms research, I’m thinking it’s time investment was made in developing a weapon designed specifically for places like the DRC; a weapon that won’t kill, can’t hurt victims, yet will put an end to the rapes and see a significant drop-off … so to speak … in new recruits.

Think phaser, as in “Set your phasers to stun” … only instead of kill or stun the only setting is shrivel.

Imagine a blaster that has no effect whatsoever aside from shrinking testicles to nothing, then causing them to drop off. Aim it at a woman, nothing happens, but lock, load and deliver on some dude and it’s bye-bye balls.

If these could be manufactured in small sizes … and possibly in pink … women in Congo could be issued one each. Just think of the problems solved, the shift in power and what a lovely place central Africa could become to raise children!

Does this seem harsh?

Sorry, but if it does, you’re missing something.

Thankfully, most no longer chalk rape up to a “boys will be boys” thing, but it’s still a horror under-appreciated in its terror and damage.

In one of the rooms, a heavy foul smell suffocates the air. At first impression, it gives the impression of a toilet that is not clean. It wasn’t.

The smell was coming from the women themselves.

Some of them are suffering from fistula whose manifestation is the uncontrollable passage of urine and in some cases, faeces.

It is estimated that 14 women are raped each day in eastern DR Congo

One 15-year-old is drumming as hard as she can.

Her experiences exemplify this complex war raging against women. She was abducted by 10 rebels from the Interahamwe group accused of carrying out the genocide in neighbouring Rwanda. They kept her for about a year as a sex slave.

”They would rape me in turns. It got to a point where I did not feel pain.”

They fed her when they wished and gave her water from their gumboots to drink. She soon became pregnant. The rebels said she would be set free once she had given birth.

”One day they tied me to a tree and tried to pull the baby out. The blood… it just kept flowing.”

She says she can no longer feel pain and relates all this in a detached manner – cold and emotionless – and then ties a colourful wraparound around her waist and walks away.

Rapists rarely rape just once and enthusiasm for it is contagious. Aside from killing the bastards, the only way to put a dent in a rapist is to separate him from his scrotum buddies.

So …

Anyone have connections in the weapons biz and want to get in on the ground floor of production of The Ball Buster?

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If you were in charge, what would you do if you came across a dude who is known to have run camps that kidnapped kids, then trained them to be soldiers? Not just one camp, but seven of them. Keep in mind that this would be in Africa, the guy’s nickname is “the Terminator”, and he is on the UN war crimes list as a wanted man.

According to the BBC, what the UN has done is given him a job.

An indicted war criminal is playing a leading role in the UN mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo, according to documents seen by the BBC.

A Congolese army paper suggests ex-rebel leader Gen Bosco Ntaganda has a major part in the command chain, says a BBC correspondent in the country.

The UN-Congolese force is fighting Hutu rebels in the eastern DR Congo.

Well, that’ll teach him.

On the off chance that you’re not familiar with the plight of children taken for soldiering in the DRC, this report from Amnesty International gives a taste. Here’s just a tiny bit of the intro:

Seven years of almost continuous war in the Democratic Republic of Congo ( DRC) have led to the death of over three million people since 1998 alone, most of them civilian men, women and children. Tens of thousands of women have been raped. Countless acts of torture have been reported. Fleeing the conflict, hundreds of thousands of civilians have been driven from their home into neighbouring countries or other parts of the DRC. Many have died from malnutrition and lack of access to humanitarian assistance. Up to two million people have been internally displaced, including 400,000 children displaced from their homes. This is not a war in which civilians have been the unfortunate victims of ‘collateral damage’, but one in which they have been unremittingly and remorselessly targeted. Death and intense suffering have become the daily fabric of Congolese lives. The conflict has also been marked by the widespread use of children as combatants by all parties. The DRC is currently one of the countries of the world with the largest number of child soldiers.

Read the full report if you have the heart.

The UN is denying that the Terminator is on the payroll … they would, wouldn’t they? … but apparently Human Rights Watch isn’t buying it

“We are very worried by this information and it seems to us that the United Nations is acting like an ostrich with its head in the sand,” Anneke Van Woudenberg, the group’s senior researcher on DR Congo, told the BBC.

“It’s time now this is addressed head on. Rather than denying or ignoring the role being played by Bosco Ntaganda, the UN should be actively seeking his arrest and transferring him to The Hague.”

Well, yeah, although ostrich is not what comes to my mind. I doubt very much that this is a case of not knowing, or even of pretending not to know, but rather out-and-out lying when facts are brought from the gloom of shady dealing into the bright light of a world paying attention.

Where the PR machine spins this one is anybody’s guess, but I am hoping the story doesn’t die on the BBC vine, especially when the UN’s public defense so far comes down to a UN spokesman’s sorry comeback:

“Bosco Ntaganda’s name does not appear on that document, so we have from our Congolese counterparts an assurance that he is not part of the command.”

Well, then … job over, hey, Buddy?

If the United Nations designed dildos, they would all be one inch long, as thick as a toothpick, made from Silly Putty and would just lay there, but they would be a pretty baby blue … and would cost $1 million each.

And, yeah, that’s a statement on expensive impotence.

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