African wars history: The deadliest wars in Africa

Some African wars have become part of history, with scores of films and novels dedicated to them. Some conflicts, at least in the eyes of the general people, have not gone down in history. This is influenced by the “quality” of the victims, not by the limited “quantity” of victims.

It’s one thing to lose a European’s life; it’s a tragedy. It’s a different story if a couple of million people are “beheaded” in Africa. Who gives a damn about them?

But who cares about them in the first place? Ignoring atrocities and mass killings is just as bad as committing them. It’s a conspiracy in silence. Consider some of Africa’s deadliest and least-publicized battles in recent years.

The Second Congolese or Great African War

The Second Congolese or Great African War
The Second Congolese or Great African War

The African deadliest war of the 21st century: in one way or another, more than twenty states and countless numbers of all kinds of fighters “for all that is good” took part in it. The war, which began as an armed rebellion of another African general, quickly grew into an international conflict, eventually affecting most of the continent.

It is believed that the active phase lasted from 1998 to 2002, although it has not completely stopped until now. But even in 4 years, the results are staggering. More than 5 million people have died; how many had to leave the country or leave their homes – it is not known, no one simply counted them, because this is Africa, but for sure we are talking about several million.

More than 500 thousand women have been raped (by women in those parts of the world, they mean any female person, regardless of age). That is, they raped and maimed, including “women” 5-7 years of age, and these are not isolated cases but the usual practice of that war.

In general, the numbers of losses and participating countries are comparable to the result of the First World War. If we take the statistics for the Congo, then every tenth inhabitant died.

The civil war in Sudan

Child soldiers were actively used in the civil war in Sudan
Child soldiers were actively used in the civil war in Sudan

A war that could not fail to happen. Absolutely all interests that you can think of came into conflict. The North fought with the South because they were different ethnic groups, different religious groups, different geography. The North is mostly desert or semi-desert; On the other hand, the South is practically all “green” – with fertile soil and large reserves of oil.

Child soldiers were actively used in this war. 10-12-year-old children were recruited into the army on both sides because the child agrees to simple answers like “These are enemies, they are bad.” This answer is quite enough for murder.

Although usually, they also added a portion of drugs to fight off fear and all kinds of doubts. More than 50,000 children were recruited during the war; what atrocities they are capable of in such a state – one can imagine. Naturally, there are no rehabilitation centers. The conflict resulted in 2 million deaths, more than 4 million refugees, and the emergence of the youngest recognized state, South Sudan (only 9 years old).

The southerners defended their independence and oil, but the North controlled all the pipelines, and 50% of the population continued to starve.

Genocide in Rwanda

Remains of over 5,200 Rwandan genocide victims buried in the east
Images of Rwandan Genocide

An attempt at genocide in Rwanda and “genocide” is not just a catchword – it was a real attempt to exterminate an entire people. Rwanda was home to two of the largest ethnic group – the Hutu and the Tutsi. There were more of the latter, but during the colonial period, it so happened that the Hutu were much higher in the hierarchy. They occupied almost all the main political and military posts; these positions were retained even after gaining independence.

After the departure of the white, Tutsis began their struggle for rights, they also wanted to receive prestigious positions, and there were many of them. The small group of Hutu, of course, did not like this. Imagine the following picture: you are driving somewhere and hearing how to cut you and people of your nationality on the radio. It happens every day: the announcers tell you where to get a weapon, why you need to be cut and how to do it best. And then they start killing you and everyone like you. Just like that, for no particular reason.

Rwandan Radio of a Thousand Hills has become a household name: it is a term for aggressive propaganda in the media. The result of this propaganda is a million people killed in three and a half months. That’s 300,000 a month, 10,000 a day, almost 400 people an hour.



This conflict does not quite fit the list (it is not bloody), but it is happening right now and has every prospect of becoming one. Ambazonia is a rebellious region in Cameroon that declared independence. They have their own government, flags, and even passports (not recognized by anyone, of course).

Minor skirmishes with the Cameroon military occur regularly, and their number is increasing, as is the number of corpses. Interests that are classic for Africa are touched upon: a different ethnic group lives in Ambazonia, and even speaks English, in contrast to French Cameroon. In addition, some neighboring states are interested in escalating the conflict.

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