Joseph Kony originated as a military figure in the early 1980’s and gradually gained influence as a strong leader in Uganda. However, most of Kon’y influence came about, not as a military figure head, but rather a spiritual “messiah” that was self-appointed to lead the people of northern Africa. But how did all of this begin?
In the early stages of the 1980’s, the Lord’s Resistance Army arose as the Holy Spirit Movement. It was originally led by a woman named ALice Lakwena who said she had been ordered by the Holy Spirit to lead an uprising against the Ugandan government in response to the accusation of mistreating the Alcholi people of the North. Lakwena rallied many supporters and eventually enough momentum had built up to where conflict began. Lakwena was exiled by the government after a recent defeat and was soon replaced by Joseph Kony who claimed to be her cousin.
When the Holy Spirit Movement began to lose direction, Joseph Kony stepped forward to help regain a focus. He stated that his goal was “to overthrow the government and rule Uganda based on the Ten Commandments” And had renamed the movement to be the Lord’s Resistance Army. After the loss of many supporters, Kony found his ranks had begun to diminish.
In response to this, Kony began to abduct and force young boys that were branded and trained to become child soldiers. Young girls were often raped and abducted for use as sex slaves and to sell off. Kony became an infamous villain in the eyes of many Africans and has persisted his terror for over 24 years.
In March 2012, Kony 2012 was a short documentary created that became a global call of support in fighting and pushing for action to stop Kony and his followers. To defy recent rumors of the LRA weakening, there has recently been a great increase in the rate of attacks. While sanctions have been issued recently on Kony by both the United States and the United Nations, there has been no progress or sign of Kony’s capture.