Wednesday, 7 March 2012

Warlord makes his Worldwide debut via social networking sites

If you didn't know his name, you will now.
Drum roll please...Enter Joseph Kony, head of the Lords Resistant Army or LRA. The Ugandan warlord has been long wanted by the International Criminal Court for multiple crimes against humanity including forcing thousands of innocent African children to serve as sex slaves and child soldiers. His use of child soldiers earned him world wide condemnation and since the creation of the LRA in 1986 he has ordered the massacre of more than 30,000 children and has "misplaced" nearly 2,000,000 people. Yet, Joseph Kony has managed to evade capture and his name is little-acknowledged outside of the African continent.

Warlord Joseph Kony
OnWednesday 7th March, the World woke up to the Kony 2012 campaign, an operation orchestrated by non-profit group Invisible Children. The goal? To make Kony Famous. But why would we want to make a multi-murderous, manipulative war criminal famous? The answer is, the movement doesn't intent to glorify the rebel leader, but rather, aims to highlight efforts to capture him by making him a house hold name. Now, we've all heard of Rihanna, we've all heard of Brad Pitt and it is fair to say that thousands of people across the globe hang on their every word. We live in a celebrity lifestyle, so why not do some good with it.

Part of the crusade includes a thirty minute film recounting the story of Jacob, a young Ugandan boy who vividly recalls watching LRA troops slit his brother's throat. The video is slickly produced, with music from Bloc Party, Flux Pavilion and Jay Z. It is clear that film maker Jason Russel knows his target audience and the video holds every attribute for it to go viral. And boy has it gone viral! Since the video was posted on 48 hours ago the short film has had over 9million views and has taken the title of "most talked about topic on Twitter" in the social networks history.
However, Russell and his supporters want more than a trending topic, they want the capture of the raping rebel leader. And with the momentum of followers backing the Invisible Children pressure group, I'll be surprised if success isn't on their way.
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