April 17, 2009
Former Liberian rape victim and child soldier speaks out

The Worldfocus signature story ”Former child soldiers, sex slaves recover from Liberia’s war“ explored how women were taken prisoner during Liberia’s 14-year civil war and forced to fight, or made into sex slaves.

When Jackie Redd was 14, she was forced to join the NPFL (National Patriotic Front of Liberia), a rebel group. She was raped and forced to be the “wife” of three men for 11 years, until she escaped in 2001.

Jackie is now speaking out. She is trying to start a support center called the “One Help One Center for War Affected Women” to provide care and training for women who are trying to recover from the war. She has also been working with Amnesty International and is the subject of a documentary about war-affected women.

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5 comments

#5

thanks to worldfocus;for uus to listen to some fact about the liberian war.i felt so sad about jackie’S story.however,liberian people let us forget,forgive and join hands to build our country
SWEET L.I.B.E.R.I.A.

#4

I also watched the docomentary on Liberia and myself being a former combat veteran, was deeply touched… Because I am one of those well kept secrets. Or I have been. Read on:

At 17, I enlisted in the United States Army and after basic training, joined the 24th Infantry Regiment Combat Team, originally known as the BUFFALO-SOLDIERS. There I found myself fighting a bloody war in a place I had never heard of: Korea. During nine months of fierce combat, I developed not only a soldier’s mentality but a political consciousness as well. Hearing older men discussing racial discrimination in both civilian and military life, I began to question the role of my all-Black Combat Unit in the Korean war. Supposedly we were protecting freedom, justice, and the American way of life, but what was that way of life for we Blacks in the United States? Where was the freedom? Why were we, the Buffalo Soldiers laying our lives on the line for a country in which African-American citizens were sometimes denied even the right to vote? Still, we fought and died like the warriors we were. In fact, we were soon to learn that we were, in reality, fighting for our lives… Our fight for equal rights was another war for those of us that survived the Korean war.

After 4 years, one in Korea and 2, 1/2 in Japan) my quest for self discovery, led me to New York City during the cultural revolution of the early 1960’s. Disillusioned with the social and political situation that prevailed at that time and on hearing of Dr. Kwame Nkrumah I moved to Accra, Ghana with less than $300.00 and a vow to make a new home for myself and those that might follow. I lived there eleven years (1965 to 1976)

As of 2009 I am the author of two books: MY SANKOFA and WHAT’S A COMMIE EVER DONE TO BLACK PEOPLE?

The two are listed on amazon.com

Now, in my senior-years I engage myself in photography: http://mysankofa.shutterbugstorefront.com/g/

I guess my advice to those who have experience THE REALITY OF WARS, is to stay strong and active. Because the horrors we experienced will remain with us forever… I guess the only consolation we have is, Soldiers don’t make wars… Old men and self serving politician make them. Others (soldiers, and the innocents) fight and die in them.

Again, My heart goes out to you my African brothers and sisters. Just stay strong.

PEACE.

#3

Early this month, I was listening to the NPR radio station, and the Liberian president, while on her ONE MONTH tour in the US-probably because all of her immediate family still live there, not in Liberia-was being interviewed. Instead laying out her plan for Liberia, she was discussing what presidents Tulbert and Doe did her personally. That was so SAD.

#2

What powerful journalism! Liberia has such an intricate and rich history. Thanks to World Focus, it will not go untold.

I am enjoying the series “Liberia’s Long Road Back,” and I am commenting for many of your readers and viewers, who like me, usually read your blogs and watch your programs and find comfort and value in these types of stories, but don’t always have time to send in feedback. We want to say thank you for telling Liberia’s story!

Thank you!

#1

I watched the documentary on Liberia on worldfocus, relayed by WHYY station. I was touched and almost burst down in tears when I listened to the story told by Jackie and her sister. Let God bless Liberia - Amen!

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