I believe that war is an evil that hurts children physiologically and psychologically.
One devilish day when I was a child in Southern Sudan, I sensed the evil of war. The sky was cloudy and there was a sudden drone in the sky. When I looked up, I saw a tiny object, the size of a highly flying bird. Then in a matter of seconds, the droning grew louder and louder, above my head. After some seconds, I heard boom, boom, boom! And naively, I covered my head with my bare hands, as if they were an armor. Terrified and too late to find a hideout, which wasn’t there, I saw a huge cloud of smoke rising to the space. Some minutes later, the terrified, unarmed, helpless villagers assembled around the targeted spot and gazed to the sky. In the middle of the terrified villagers, lay two expired humankind whose playground was turned into a chopping board. Their tender bodies chopped and charred. And shortly afterwards, the villages were engulfed in a darkness of terror.
For years I lived on the run in the jungles of Sudan. But one day, after a long sickening walk, some angry men shouted, “Stop! Don’t you know that this is Kenya? You’re illegal!” Embarrased, I stood head down, my heart thumping and dirty sweat trickling down my shrivelled face.
Later when the United Nations representative came, my status changed from illegal to refugee. So following that, I was relocated to Kakuma, one of the poorest and harshest parts of Kenya. In Kakuma, an island of poverty, when the day breaks it turns into an oven and I sweated like potatoes in an oven in my flimsy, plastic-made dwelling. And on the worst day, from sunrise to sunset, the island was blanketed with dust suspended into the air by a swirling wind that ripped through the camp throughout the day.
Handcuffed and tethered down by the Kenyan laws, I lived within the little area that was marked as the refugee camp. So groaning from the pain of poverty like the thousands of war victims from war torn Sudan, I lived on about fifteen pounds of corn for two weeks, five liters of water a day, and a piece of soap for three months.
Although I had fled from the chopping-board, I was still reminded of its continuous terror. Every time the international committee of the Red Cross brings children collected from Sudan, my heart bleeds with tears. As they come out of the car, I could see that their innocence has been robbed by the cruel government of Sudan. Their chattered bodies, propped by crutches or artificial limbs (thanks to the Red Cross). But for those with the invisible scars, it surprises one to see them running to hiding when they hear the drone of the UN planes flying over the refugee camp.
So, isn’t war an evil that plunder our children of their basic rights?
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