Liberia, A Small Country Trying to Recover from a Big War

by Emmanuel Wehjla

Liberia is a one of smallest and well-known countries in Africa but a tragic war that lasted for seven years took away its success. The war in Liberia started December 25, 1989 on Christmas evening. I was nine years old when the Liberian war started. Before the war, my father and I went for a visit to a neighboring country, Ghana, and never returned but my family was still in Liberia.

My mother had been in the United States since 1987. She has been living here for the past eleven years. She was not present in Liberia during the war but she read newspaper and videos. She said that it was one of the most terrifying and destructive wars in Africa. She said that it was one of the worst wars because it was civil and tribal. There were five rebel factions. She also added that the rebels were young people who used drugs so they had no compassion. There were also many rebel leaders but the leading names were Charles Tayor and Prince Johnnson who were both rebel leaders.

The Liberian war was intended to kill Samuel Doe, who was the president at the time. He was caught, tortured and killed like an animal by rebel leader Prince Johnson.

My uncle who was present in Liberia during the war said, "It was the most nasty, terrifying, and manslaughtering event I ever saw in my entire life." He told me that he saw human beings lying on the street of Monrovia like dead animals.

The most recent survey shows that during the seven year war seventy five percent of the Liberian population was killed. Just imagine how dangerous it was. The good news now is the war is over and one of the former rebels by the name of Charles Taylor was successful and won the 1997 election by an overwhelming eighty five percent of six candidates.

 Copyright © 1999, Silver International, Montgomery Blair H.S., Silver Spring, MD USA (This page was created by Claudia, Emmanuel, and Meron)