When I was abducted, they asked me about my names and where I come from. I had to lie to them. I had almost thirteen years. I also tried to escape, but I was re-abducted, that’s why they beat me. I was beaten on my back two hundred times with sticks + machete. Even right now, I still have the scars on my back. After that, we use to punish people too. We used to beat people and four of us also killed a person because they had tried to escape.
This is how I escaped in 2005. The government troops attacked us with helicopters + they were bombing + everyone was scattered- that is how I got my way to escape. So, as the helicopters bombed us, I ran + hid myself with 1 of the child who I was taking care of. The government troops were also on the ground following us. As I continued hiding, the soldiers on foot got me + then he aimed the gun at me to shoot me, but one of the officers was following him + stopped him. “Don’t shoot!” he said.
The first time Beatrice invited me to her hut, she showed me this amnesty card. She had been abducted by the Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) and forced to serve in their ranks. She had escaped 1 year before in crossfire between the LRA and the Ugandan Mlitary (UPDF) and was granted "amnesty" by the Ugandan government. Amnesty assures that ex-rebels cannot be prosecuted by the government.
I realize that she first showed me this card because she thought that that was what munus (white westerners) wanted to see from her. It seems too often that we who are living outside of conflict regard the experience of abduction and fighting, the so called pornographies of violence, as the only experiences worthy of attention and re-telling.