When Grace Arach was 12 she was kidnapped, raped, tortured, and forced to become the wife of one of Joseph Kony’s commanders. She escaped when she was 17. Since then she’s been working to help other child soldiers. Now she’s 25 and has been living in Australia for almost a year. Her family is still in Uganda.

The author was forced to marry this man's deputy. Image: AFP.

I was in a vehicle with five others, including a Catholic priest, when we were ambushed by the Lord’s Resistance Army. They stopped the vehicle and got us out. There were five men and me. I was a little girl, 12 years old. It was 1996.

We went to a centre where the soldiers looted food and some drinks, then the priest asked the commander that was leading the group that arrested us, he asked: “What about the little girl?”. He said: “I want to take her back to her mother”.

The answer he got was: “Have you ever seen blood flowing?”, meaning if the priest insisted they would kill me.

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“Have you heard about Kony?” is a question that I was astounded to have addressed to me by a 14-year-old urbanite girl in a café in New York City. 

“Joseph Kony?” I asked, incredulous.

The sentence below this picture neatly sums up how disgusting this man is.

“The man who forces children to kill each other and uses girls as sex slaves,” she clarified in a remarkably matter-of-fact way. I was astounded.

I do know Kony. At least, I know of Kony. There are very few people who can truly claim to know him. Even the child soldiers who grew to men in his army, or the captive young girls who came traumatically to womanhood bearing his children have been brainwashed by the self-created mythology of the man. When I spoke to those who knew him intimately most still believed that Kony possessed magical powers.>

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  • Joan Bennett says:

    06:36am | 14/03/12

    And don’t forget to buy the merchandise!  30% of it might go somewhere good.  The other 70% will be lost in “administration”... Read more »

  • Ooh shiny says:

    02:19pm | 13/03/12

    One thing that is bothering me - Why choose 20th April as their “Cover the Night” campaign date? Even if we assume that the organisers weren’t aware of the, ahem, older relevance of that date, there is still very recent event of Columbine massacre - 20th April 1999. You know,… Read more »


The recent resurfacing of the Anti-Homosexuality Bill in Uganda, or the “Kill the Gays” Bill as it is notoriously referred to, has been a timely reminder of how homophobia remains a threat to human dignity. So how do sexuality, national politics and human rights align?

Homosexuals are not the danger in Uganda. Photo: AFP.

In numerous places around the world, homosexuality remains a site of intense political and social anxiety. Despite sexual orientation becoming a valid focus of international human rights law, over 80 countries around the world continue to criminalise homosexuality.

Uganda is now reconsidering legislation that would enhance the criminal penalties that already exist for people who engage consensual same-sex relationships. This may also include the death penalty for offences that are deemed to be of an “aggravated” nature.

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  • Grey UGGs says:

    10:14am | 16/11/12

    It’s very thoughtful of you.I’m happy to meet youMe too.I wonder if they can make itI was taking care of Sally.Linda speaks as if she were a boss.Guess what? Time is more valuable than money.Any day will do.You may choose whatever you like. Read more »

  • Jason Todd says:

    09:34pm | 13/02/12

    To be fair David, the US Evangelicals that I know of that support the legislation in Uganda have said that their support is conditional on the death penalty being removed. Having said that, I still find it deplorable that they would support legislation that sanctions the imprisonment of homosexuals, but… Read more »


“I am a concerned Ugandan citizen because I…am worried that my children will be recruited to be homosexuals …I am worried that the future of Ugandan children is at stake.”

WARNING: THIS VIDEO IS EXTREMELY GRAPHIC. The Punch, not the author, chose it to illustrate the disgraceful stance of some Ugandans on this issue.

In October 2009, an Anti-Homosexuality Bill, or what has been internationally dubbed as the “Kill the gays” Bill, was introduced by David Bahati MP in Ugandan Parliament. The Bill strengthened the existing criminal penalties while increasing the sentences for certain kinds of consensual sexual “offences” between people of the same-sex.

Much of the social and political obsession with the idea of “homosexuality” in Uganda disparately emerged as a product of British colonialism. “Sodomy” offences or “acts against the order of nature”, as they are commonly referred to, were introduced through colonialism as a way of policing all non-heterosexual or non-reproductive relationships.

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  • Hamsa says:

    06:59pm | 07/08/12

    ...”...women are much more cautious about sex with a man than men are about sex with a woman (since a man doesn’t have the “risk” of prennagcy and his cost is more straightforwardly facultative).“If this is a valid consideration (I’m skeptical), it certainly wouldn’t happen consciously.  More likely: men view… Read more »

  • Lloyd says:

    03:57pm | 30/05/11

    @Snake.The evidence is thousands upon thousands of gay people telling the rest of the population that they were born that way.The evidence is thousands of people getting killed for something they cannot change.Why would we choose to make things harder for ourselves? Your comment is the ultimate in heterosexual arrogance.How… Read more »


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