A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier

A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier

Ishmael Beah

Language: English

Pages: 229

ISBN: 0374531269

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier

Ishmael Beah

Language: English

Pages: 229

ISBN: 0374531269

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


This is how wars are fought now: by children, hopped-up on drugs and wielding AK-47s. Children have become soldiers of choice. In the more than fifty conflicts going on worldwide, it is estimated that there are some 300,000 child soldiers. Ishmael Beah used to be one of them.
What is war like through the eyes of a child soldier? How does one become a killer? How does one stop? Child soldiers have been profiled by journalists, and novelists have struggled to imagine their lives. But until now, there has not been a first-person account from someone who came through this hell and survived.

In A Long Way Gone, Beah, now twenty-five years old, tells a riveting story: how at the age of twelve, he fled attacking rebels and wandered a land rendered unrecognizable by violence. By thirteen, he'd been picked up by the government army, and Beah, at heart a gentle boy, found that he was capable of truly terrible acts.

 
This is a rare and mesmerizing account, told with real literary force and heartbreaking honesty.

"My new friends have begun to suspect I haven't told them the full story of my life.
'Why did you leave Sierra Leone?'
'Because there is a war.'
'You mean, you saw people running around with guns and shooting each other?'
'Yes, all the time.'
'Cool.'
I smile a little.
'You should tell us about it sometime.'
'Yes, sometime.'"

D-Day: June 6, 1944: The Climactic Battle of World War II

The Way of the Knife: The CIA, a Secret Army, and a War at the Ends of the Earth

Afghanistan: The Soviet Invasion and the Afghan Response, 1979-1982

Rorke's Drift 1879: 'Pinned Like Rats in a Hole' (Campaign, Volume 41)

One Bullet Away: The Making of a Marine Officer

The Short Timers

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

wanted to, but because I thought that if I told her some of the gruesome truth of my war years she would be afraid of me and would cease asking questions. She listened attentively when I began to talk. Her eyes were glued to my face, and I bowed my head as I delved into my recent past. During the second dry season of my war years, we were low on food and ammunition. So, as usual, we decided to attack another village. First, I went with my squad to spy on a village. We watched the village all

doing business with his shirt. He would lend it to the boys for a few hours in exchange for toothpaste, soap, lunch, and so on. At the end of the week, he had a lot of toothpaste and other items that he sold at an outdoor market farther away from the center. The day after we returned from the city, I went to the hospital immediately after class and waited for Esther. She was surprised to find me waiting for her at the doorstep. She rubbed my head and said, “I have good news. Your results from

together for a group dance to this particular song. We high-fived each other and then hugged. He was still taller than me. We sat together on the stoop and briefly talked about our childhood pranks. “Sometimes I think about those great times we had dancing at talent shows, practicing new dances, playing soccer until we couldn’t see the ball…It seems like all those things happened a very long time ago. It is really strange, you know,” he said, looking away for a bit. “I know, I know…” I said.

I told myself that I wouldn’t want to live in such an unpleasantly cold country, where I would always have to worry about my nose, ears, and face falling off. That first morning in New York City, we learned about each other’s lives for hours. Some of the children had risked their life to attend the conference. Others had walked hundreds of miles to neighboring countries to be able to get on a plane. Within minutes of talking to each other, we knew that the room was filled with young people who

(RUF), under the leadership of a former corporal, Foday Sankoh, begin to attack villages in eastern Sierra Leone, on the Liberian border. The initial group is made up of Charles Taylor’s rebels and a few mercenaries from Burkina Faso. Their goal is to rid the country of the corrupt APC government. Fighting continues in the ensuing months, with the RUF gaining control of the diamond mines in the Kono district and pushing the Sierra Leone army back toward Freetown. April 1992 A group of young

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