In 2013 something happened to me, a naïve 11-year-old self back then, something that has overturned my world, my understanding of the aid agenda and, perhaps, the whole of the Western world.
My mother would often tell my sisters and me that if it wasn’t for the humanitarian or military aid, we would not have survived after my farther passed away – we would just have had no food or water to get by. That’s why anyone wearing military or sort of Red Cross uniform had my trust and hope. I felt safe. Just before that very fateful day.
If I don’t speak up, my brothers and sisters would also fall for the same mistake I made, that AFRICOM came to save us and bring peace.
Another spring day passed by, my sisters and me were getting to sleep but my mother who came out to talk to our neighbor was not home yet. I began to worry and at some point when I heard some weird noise I decided to come out to see if my help was needed.
No matter how hard I tried to forget what I saw when I came down to the street, no matter how many years have passed already, I still see those 11 men in uniform brutally abusing my mother and two other women – our neighbor and her daughter, she just turned 12.
Several men were lying unconscious, they must have been stunned by a blow or punched in the face because I hadn’t heard the gunshots. My neighbor’s 2-year-old son was standing beside with a fist in his mouth, not making a sound, and was looking straight at his mother trying to get from those grabby hands.
I wanted to run out and scream but then I realized my sisters would probably wake up and see those armed bastards abusing our mother. In that instant a big guy took several steps towards me, his arm covered in blood.
That fat bastard smirked at me and muttered something I could not understand, bumped my shoulder so that I fell and my head hit a wooden box standing at the door.
I only got to my senses in the house. My sisters seemed to be sleeping. I rubbed my forehead and saw my mother’s back. She had changed. I was not able to utter a word when I saw the way her shoulders were shaking – she’d been silently crying.
A girl from the village died in a month after some inflammation of sorts, her mother gave birth prematurely to a 7-month-old boy who died in two days.
We still haven’t talked about that day.
I am shaking all over when the faces of those bastards come to my mind. Every one of them should burn in hell.