Liberian Death Squads Eat UN & African Peacekeepers

Dec 8, 2004
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Maine
#1
Top aide testifies Taylor ordered soldiers to eat victims



MSTERDAM, Netherlands (AP) -- Grim tales of cannibalism highlighting the brutality of West Africa's civil wars emerged in testimony Thursday at the war crimes trial of former Liberian President Charles Taylor.

Joseph "Zigzag" Marzah, who described himself as Taylor's chief of operations and head of the death squad before Taylor became president, said African peacekeepers and even United Nations personnel were killed and eaten on the battlefield by Taylor's militiamen.


Prosecutors described Marzah as a key witness with inside knowledge of the former Liberian president's operations in Liberia and neighboring Sierra Leone, where he is accused of responsibility for the widespread murder, **** and amputations committed by soldiers loyal to him.

Taylor, 59, has pleaded not guilty to 11 counts of war crimes and crimes against humanity. He is accused of orchestrating violence in Sierra Leone's civil war, which ended in 2002, and trading in illegally mined diamonds to finance the conflict.

The trial by the Special Court for Sierra Leone, part of the International Criminal Court in The Hague, Netherlands, began last June but adjourned after one day when Taylor fired his lawyer. It reconvened in January, but many prosecution witnesses have testified behind closed doors for fear of retribution.

Marzah appeared in open court after lengthy negotiations involving protection for him and his family.

Prodded under cross-examination by defense lawyer Courtenay Griffith, Marzah gave a sometimes-graphic description of cannibalism that altered between the ritual taking of vengeance and the practical need for food.

He repeatedly said nothing was done without Taylor's instructions, and that anyone who violated Taylor's orders would be executed.

"Did Charles Taylor order you to eat people?" Griffith asked.

"Yes, to set an example for the people to be afraid," Marzah replied.

He appeared unfazed by Griffith's blunt queries, and responded in matter-of-fact tones to such questions as "How do you prepare a human being for the pot?"

Marzah then described the splitting, cleaning, decapitating and cooking of the corpse with salt and pepper. "We throw your head away," he said.

He said the victims were usually from the ethnic Krahn, the tribe of former Liberian President Samuel Doe whom Taylor set out to topple in 1989. But they also included peacekeepers from the Nigerian-led ECOMOG, the African peacekeeping force sent to the area in 1990, and some U.N. people, he said.

"How many ECOMOG soldiers did you eat?" the attorney asked.

"We ate a few but not many. But many were executed, about 68," the witness said, and several U.N. personnel also were captured. The time and location of the incident were unclear.

"Which ones taste best?" Griffith asked.

"There was no alternative but to do it your own way," Marzah replied.

Enemies, he was told, "are no longer human beings."

Taylor, then head of the National Patriotic Liberian Front, said in interviews at the time that he considered ECOMOG to be just another warring faction in the multisided civil wars in Sierra Leone and Liberia.

Later, ECOMOG helped stabilize the region, allowing elections in Liberia in 1997 that Taylor won.
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[Ron]Do we have any blue helmets back there, I'm starving[/Ron]
 

Hudson

Supreme Champion!!!!!
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Jan 14, 2002
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#3
think they debated which to eat on which night?
Soldier 1: "What do ya want tonight? Italian?"
Soldier 2: "Nah, Italian gives me gas..lets eat Chinese"
Soldier 1: "Ok..but you know..we'll be hungry again an hour later!"
[All laugh]
 

grail

Tahini sauce in my drawers
Sep 24, 2005
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#5
More like, tastes like pork. The other, other white meat. Why would they throw the heads away, you could make a good headcheese with that. Cheeks and jowls. Just wasteful if you ask me.
 

Hudson

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#6
More like, tastes like pork. The other, other white meat. Why would they throw the heads away, you could make a good headcheese with that. Cheeks and jowls. Just wasteful if you ask me.
Hence the term Long Pig

While looking it up, I came across this:
In the 1870s, a man named Alferd Packer was accused of killing and eating his traveling companions while crossing the Rocky Mountains (in what is now the state of Colorado.) He served fourteen years in prison before being paroled on the basis of the Grandfather clause, as the alleged cannibalism happened 6 years before Colorado became a state on Ute tribal land. Throughout his life he maintained that he was innocent of the murders. The story of Alferd Packer was satirically told in the Trey Parker comedy/horror/musical student film, Cannibal! The Musical. The main food court at the University of Colorado at Boulder is named the Alferd Packer Grill.
that is pretty funny!
 

LiddyRules

I'm Gonna Be The Bestest Pilot In The Whole Galaxy
Jun 1, 2005
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#7
I misread this thread and thought it said "Librarian Death Squads" which put a vastly different image in my mind.
 

VMS

Victim of high standards and low personal skills.
Apr 26, 2006
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#9
Link

[Ron]Do we have any blue helmets back there, I'm starving[/Ron]
Dude, Taylor's cannibalism has been part of the record for a while, now.

IIRC, "Lord of War" mentioned that his son had a reputation as a cannibal.

On the other hand, the US has just a slight responsibility to help out in Liberia, since we fucking founded the damned country in the first place as an attempted "fix" for one of this country's mistakes...
 

CougarHunter

Lying causes cat piss smell.
Mar 2, 2006
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#10
On the other hand, the US has just a slight responsibility to help out in Liberia, since we fucking founded the damned country in the first place as an attempted "fix" for one of this country's mistakes...
Says who?
 
Jun 2, 2005
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Dallas
#13
I misread this thread and thought it said "Librarian Death Squads" which put a vastly different image in my mind.
I had just come from the Ron Paul thread so I thought it said "Libertarian Death Squad". I was really wondering what the fuck I was in for.
 

dolemyte

Tiger = Wesley Pipes
Feb 27, 2008
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#16
we founded Liberia, its our responsibility,

Never thought of it that way,but good point. We play big protective brother to other countries, this one even existing is a direct result of the our countries' former actions
 

Stormrider666

Hell is home.
Mar 19, 2005
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#18
we founded Liberia, its our responsibility,
Beat me to it. Just to shed a little more light on Liberia, it was founded during the Monroe administration with the purpose for being the new homeland for slaves. Its capital, Monrovia, is the only foreign city to be named after a United States president.
 

VMS

Victim of high standards and low personal skills.
Apr 26, 2006
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#20
The sad things is, Liberia was one of the brighter lights in Africa. From 1822-1980, Liberia was as healthy an African country as there was, other than South Africa.

Yes, an African country was continuously a more-or-less democratic republic for 158 years!!!!!

The decision by Carter (in the middle of his losing election to Reagan, and distracted by Iran) not to get involved meant that Liberia has been through almost 30 years of pure shit. And yes, the coup leaders were smart enough to paint all their opponents as "socialists" to keep Reagan off their backs.

I'm not saying Liberia was a paradise before the 1980 coup: for one thing there were some pretty serious caste issues with the descendants of former American slaves running things. But compared to the rest of sub-Saharan Africa, it was pretty damned good.
 

BIV

I'm Biv Dick Black, the Over Poster.
Apr 22, 2002
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#23
I misread this thread and thought it said "Librarian Death Squads" which put a vastly different image in my mind.
Ha, I read it at "[SIZE=-1]Libertarian death squads." Now that is scary.[/SIZE]

EDIT:

I had just come from the Ron Paul thread so I thought it said "Libertarian Death Squad". I was really wondering what the fuck I was in for.
Fuck, now I'm thinking like Voss's Tumor.