The book I read to research this post was Another Man’s War by Sam Childers which is an excellent autobiography that I bought from kindle. This book was made into a film called Machine Gun Preacher starring Gerard Butler and is set in South Sudan and about the civil war there. The essence of the book is an ex-biker turns to christianity and decides to go out to Sudan and Uganda and along with converting and helping people has to become a mercenary with a small private army that helps maintain order in an area devastated by war. There has since about 1955 been a war going on between muslims and christians with the former wanting to impose islam on everyone and the christians wanting people to have the right to choose their religion. Recently I did see a news item saying South Sudan is the newest country. Sudan is predominantly muslim and the south is predominantly christian. This argument between the 2 beliefs also affects the many in the South who follow tribal religions. Sam says that although the 2 groups are represented by armies they are often not paid and are quite anarchic with them raiding villages and setting up unofficial roadblocks to raise money, steal possessions and generally abuse the civilians. They reguarly seize people’s children by force and make them become members. The civilian populations generally have no weapons and the various want an easy time of plundering and harming them like most bullies and they get scared if anyone fires back. Sam and his mercenaries have a mission building with things like a school and hospital but also go about sorting out the bullies. Apparently charities in general give this area a wide berth because it’s too dangerous. Sam also goes into Uganda which has many of the same problems but isn’t as bad. He criticizes the American government for selling weapons that end up in the hands of this rabble. Apparently the Geneva Convention forbids selling weapons to any country with an ongoing war. On one occassion he was told 200 troops were raiding a village ahead and the Ugandan Guards at the checkpoint were afraid to get involved. He went ahead with his 5 men to sort it out and when they got there and started shooting they discovered it was about 30 men who all fled when they attacked. He does argue it is pointless the 2 sides negotiating a settlement because any principles that may have caused the war have long since been forgotten and it’s like every man for himself there. I very much enjoyed this book and definitely recommend it. It’s very moving.