DVD and Site/Local Streaming plus DVD
102 minutes, 2005, Liberia and USA Producer / Director: Jonathan Stack
ABOUT THE FILM
Liberia: An Uncivil War provides an in-depth case study of one of the many brutal civil wars which have sprung up like wild fires across Africa. It is an exciting example of war-time journalism - white knuckles reporting with bullets ricocheting just feet from the camera placed in a historical context stretching back nearly two hundred years. Liberia can uniquely claim to be ‘made in America’ and has always looked to the U.S. in its times of crisis.
Reporter Jonathan Stack is besieged in the Liberian capital of Monrovia where President Charles Taylor says he will not leave until peacekeepers are in place. He is remarkably equable for a man who has just been indicted on 17 counts of crimes against humanity by the United Nations.
James Barbazon is ‘embedded’ with the LURD (Liberians United for Reconciliation and Democracy) who have pledged to pillage the country until President Taylor leaves. He introduces us to General Cobra, Col. Black Diamond and soldiers, slightly more than children, who eat their victims hearts in the belief it will make them stronger.
With the rebels at the bridges leading to Monrovia the Nigerians are at last persuaded to send 750 peacekeepers and the U.N. follows soon with 14,000. But what remains in the viewers’ mind is President Bush’s empty promises of help during the darkest days of Liberia’s civil war.
ADDITIONAL RESOURCES Watchlist - On Children and Armed Conflict -The Watchlist is a network of local, regional and international non-governmental organizations working to protect the security and rights of children in armed conflicts. The Watchlist monitors the impact of armed conflict on children and influences policies to improve their lives. Visit Watchlist to support efforts to demobilize and reintegrate child soldiers in Liberia. Friends of Liberia Friends of Liberia (FOL) has been working with the people of Liberia since 1986. Its 800 members--former Peace Corps volunteers, diplomats, missionaries, business people, relief workers and Liberians--are dedicated to helping the nation rebuild its institutions, educate its children and improve the quality of life for all who live there.
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"I strongly recommend that all persons interested in bringing peace and security to places of conflict in Africa see this film."
Abou Moussa, Officer in Charge U.N. Mission in Liberia
"Liberia has always been America's stepchild, an inconvenient reminder of slavery. This film shows how American inaction and indifference prolonged the suffering of that nation to the breaking point. It asks when will Liberia achieve the dream of liberty and independence in which it was conceived."
Salih Booker, Africa Action
"This is an educational, engaging documentary that I strongly recommend for every student, scholar, and human rights advocate to gain deeper insight into the decades long conflict in Liberia and its wider implications for West Africa."
Charles Jackson, exiled Liberian journalist and Knight Fellow Stanford University
"This outstanding documentary is a noble and praiseworthy undertaking...I enthusiastically give my highest recommendation to this painstaking piece of work. The producers and all involved with making this film should be praised for their courage and resolve. The film gives a deep exploration of the civil war on a personal level and on a global level".
Michael Coffta, Bloomsburg University, EMRO
"Recommended for high schools, colleges, and adults who want to get a better understanding of the conflict within Dafur."