Civil war

Conflict as integration : youth aspiration to personhood in the teleology of Sierra Leone's 'senseless war'

Upphovsperson: King, Nathaniel
Utgivare: Nordiska Afrikainstitutet | Nordiska Afrikainstitutet, Conflict, Displacement and Transformation | Uppsala : Nordiska Afrikainstitutet
År: 2007
Ämnesord: Civil war, conflicts, attitudes, public opinion polls, social surveys, youth, child soldiers, Sierra Leone, Peace and conflict research, Freds- och konfliktforskning
The rebel war in Sierra Leone has been given various characterisations. One of the most commonplace of them brands it a ‘senseless war’. In this study the author examines the views of the Sierra Leoneans themselves on this notion, and through a sociological lens he explores the “youthscape“ of the war. The study also revisits some of the central works on the Sierra Leonean war by authors such as Paul Richards, Ibrahim Adbdullah and Yusuf Bangura.

Guerrilla government : political changes in the southern Sudan during the 1990s

Upphovsperson: Rolandsen, Øystein H.
Utgivare: Nordiska Afrikainstitutet | Uppsala : Nordiska Afrikainstitutet
År: 2005
Ämnesord: Sudan, southern Sudan, sudan people´s liberation, movement, army, government, Civil war, conventions, political development, political reform, Political science, Statsvetenskap
Although it suffered a serious setback when, in 1991, three senior commanders tried to wrestle control from its leader, John Garang, the SPLM/A has remained the main rebel organisation in the southern Sudan since the start of the second civil war in 1983. At a national level the SPLM/As influence over political development in the south has been matched only by the government in Khartoum and its armed forces, and at a local level only by chiefs, who derive their power from the old system of indirect rule, established by the British during the colonial period. An understanding of the changes and processes within the SPLM/A is, therefore, essential to an analysis of the Sudans contemporary history and current events, which includes continuing peace negotiations, and the planning of post-war southern Sudan. This volume analyses the main events leading up to the SPLM/As current position of supremacy and follows the process of internal reform that has brought about a nascent state structure amidst a devastating civil war and continuous humanitarian crisis.The book consists of three chronologically ordered, integrated parts, where the first part discusses the effect of the split in 1991 and the movements political and administrative structures prior to its National Convention in 1994. The activities of southern rebels, traditional structures and humanitarian agencies are described, and the study shows how the interaction between these institutions constituted a unique political system.The 1994 Convention is discussed in the second part. The Convention was, and to some extent still is, regarded by most members of the SPLM/A as one of the Movement’s greatest achievements. Here the processes leading up to the National Convention is recaptured; preparations and the event itself are discussed thoroughly.Finally, the book analyses the significance of the Convention and its reforms in the light of later attempts at implementation when, in the last part of the 1990s, political paralysis set in as the Movement experienced unprecedented military success. The discussion is brought to a conclusion with a brief summary of events during the period 2000–2004 and presents some thoughts on the future government of the south Sudan. Guerrilla Government is of interest to academics, humanitarian workers and diplomats concerned with the Sudan’s contemporary history, civil wars and humanitarian operations in a war-zone. The book contributes towards documenting the experience of the southern Sudanese and the pretext for the current peace process, and provides ample case material for students of insurgencies and internal conflicts. Explaining the political and military background to today’s complex situation in the South, Guerrilla Government should be studied by everyone who wishes to contribute to the rebuilding of a war-torn Sudan.

Does one size fit all? : the Sierra Leone Truth and Reconciliation Commission revisited

Upphovsperson: Sesay, Amadu
Utgivare: Nordiska Afrikainstitutet | Uppsala : Nordiska Afrikainstitutet
År: 2007
Ämnesord: Civil war, conflicts, violence, Reconciliation, Post-conflict reconstruction, Peace building, Truth and Reconciliation Commission, Sierra Leone, Peace and conflict research, Freds- och konfliktforskning
Societies emerging from protracted conflict and violence face numerous challenges at the individual, community and national levels. Accordingly, a variety of strategies have been suggested for "healing" the wounds of the past and coping with the future, thereby facilitating national reconciliation and peace buildings. One of these approaches is the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, TRC, believed to provide a veritable platform for victims and perpetrators alike, to have a voice that would enable them to come to terms with the horrifying past. In Africa, TRCs as strategies for coming to terms with the past in Africa came into prominence following the example of South Africa after the end of apartheid in 1994. Since then, TRCs have been set up in Rwanda and Sierra Leone, while one has been proposed for Liberia. From such a standpoint it is tempting to argue that there has emerged what we can call  a  "one size fits all" syndrome, that is, if the TRC "worked" for South Africa, a position that is the subject of intense debate within and outside that country, then it is "good" for Sierra Leone, Liberia or any other African society that is emerging from protracted violent conflict. The main purpose of this study, therefore, is to draw attention to the TRC phenomenon in Sierra Leone, to stimulate discussion on the diverse questions surrounding its rationale, processes and outcomes, especially its impacts on post conflict reconciliation in the country. Another goal of the project is to document the multiple and conflicting perceptions among various groups in the TRC processes, and how such perceptions were reflected in the Commission's work and recommendations. Finally, it is expected that the study would form the basis for future empirically grounded research and policy analysis, more extensive research and perhaps even collaboration, between the author and those working on innovative but home-grown mechanisms for promoting reconciliation in post war Sierra Leone and elsewhere.