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On 7 May 2000 1 PARA group less A company but reinforced by D Company 2 PARA was deployed to Sierra Leone at very short notice to evacuate UK and other civilians threatened by Revolutionary United Front (RUF) rebels and other insurgents around Freetown.

from Getty Images

Cruel War: The Amputees Of Sierra Leone

Memunata Kanu stands at the Murray Town amputee camp August, 1999 near Freetown, Sierra Leone. Kanu, 2, was mutilated by the guerrilla forces of the Revolutionary United Front, and is the youngest known survivor of such an attack.

Sierra Leone Web - Bing Images - The Sierra Leone Civil War (1991–2002) began on 23 March 1991 when the Revolutionary United Front (RUF), with support from the special forces of Charles Taylor’s National Patriotic Front of Liberia (NPFL), intervened in Sierra Leone in an attempt to overthrow the Joseph Momoh government. The resulting civil war lasted 11 years, enveloped the country, and left over 50,000 dead...


This picture relates to the book because it shows a young man who had the initials RUF carved into his chest. "One of the messengers was a young man. They had carved their initials, RUF (Revolutionary United Front), on his body with a hot bayonet" (Beah 21)


"Revolutionary United Front" (Wikipedia article) - A quick, but sloppy, overview (with links to articles on related topics) of a defeated terrorist organization.

Sam Bockarie was one of the top leaders of the Revolutionary United Front (RUF) in Sierra Leone. The RUF were reported to have conducted a violent campaign against the civilian population which consisted of collective executions, mutilations, amputations, sexual violence, forced labor in the diamond mines and in the enrollment and use of child soldiers.

from BBC News

In pictures: Charles Taylor and the Liberia and Sierra Leone wars

Liberia Civil War | RUF ( Revolutionary United Front ) soldiers ride in a pick up truck at ...