Gambian President’s Guard Allegedly Sent to Force Villagers To Be Treated By Witch Doctors — Resulting in Deaths and Sicknesses

225px-gambia_president_yahya_jammeh180px-lassa_witch_doctorsRecently, the aunt of Gambian President Yahya Jammeh died and he reportedly blamed witchcraft. Now, Amnesty International reports the President’s personal guard and both police and army forces have abducted up to 1000 villagers to force them to drink a vile liquid from witch doctors brought in by the government. They were forced to drink potions that reportedly killed two and sickened many others.

The witch hunters were reportedly brought in from Guinea and many villagers are fleeing the country.

Villagers have been held for up to five days and forced to drink the liquids — producing vomiting, kidney and liver problems, diarrhea and erratic behavior. Many were forced to confess to being witches and were beaten.

For the full story, click here.

One thought on “Gambian President’s Guard Allegedly Sent to Force Villagers To Be Treated By Witch Doctors — Resulting in Deaths and Sicknesses”

  1. This story makes me think of several things. 1. the film Waltz with Bashir–Palestinian civilians murdered by christian phalangists who carved the cross on their chests before they shot them in the back. 2. a performance by Marina Abramovic where she laid out objects on a table, inlcuding knives, a rose and a gun with one bullet and invited a crowd to use the objects on her for 6 hours. (I do not believe there is any reason to do such “performance art” but she did this. She is considered a star in the performance art world.)
    There was a gradual descent into madness by the crowd to the point where they were ready to shoot her but someone grabbed the gun. She has a scar from the knife cut of one participant.
    What unifies these things with the above post to me is– the use of the crowd mentality by unscrupulous authority. What would posses people to cut and try to shoot a stranger? We must have much that is hidden from our own awarness that we can be manipulated to the point of killing others. Authority figures who misuse their power are everywhere. I am also interested in what it takes to resist the power of the crowd. Someone did grab the gun. Soldiers did report what was happening as it happened to their superiors, who, at the top of the chain, ignored it. In the case of “witchcraft”, if the army surrounds your village, resistance to “crowd mentality” has little meaning. Yet, toleration by people who are not in the thick of things is clearly crowd mentality.

    I think this ties into the post on sciencetology and the other religions mentioned by rcampbell. We have much to learn about ourselves.

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