Category Archives: Big Men

Generation Terrorists: The Politics of Youth and the Gangs of Freetown, by Kieran Mitton

Youth at Risk – Youth as Risk On the evening of the 15th February, six leading presidential candidates for the Sierra Leone presidential elections took to the stage. Over three hours of a live broadcasted debate, each answered questions about … Continue reading

Posted in Big Men, democratisation, Election violence, Elections, Social protest, Youth | Tagged | 2 Comments

How John Richardson Joined the NPFL: Charles Taylor’s Confidant Speaks on Liberian Politics and American Warmongering, by Brooks Marmon

One of Charles Taylor’s best known and most eloquent defenders is John T. Richardson, a Liberian architect, who continues to speak with the former Liberian President two to three times a week. Richardson, an American trained architect who launched his … Continue reading

Posted in Big Men, Conflict, Conflict economies, Governance, Perspectives on Power, politics, Post Conflict | Tagged | Leave a comment

The Ties that Bind: Ex-Military Command Structures as a Foundation for Peace or Source for Insecurity? by Anders Themnér

The presence of large groups of ex-combatants is often seen as a major challenge to post-civil war stability. Experiences of ex-fighters engaging in different forms of violence have prompted policy-makers and scholars (and to be frank, at times also myself) … Continue reading

Posted in Big Men, Conflict, Conflict economies, Excombatants, Governance, Informal networks, Mid-Level Commanders | Tagged | 3 Comments

Meles Zenawi and Africa’s Second Fiddles (guest post by Declan Galvin)

The Death of a Big Man It was reported that Ethiopian Prime Minister Meles Zenawi died on August 20th at the age of 57, a relatively young age for an African dictator. Zenawi had been the de facto leader of … Continue reading

Posted in Big Men, politics | Tagged | 1 Comment

50 years.

Charles Taylor will spend the rest of his life in prison (unless someone decides to assist his escape again :)) for aiding and abetting war crimes in Sierra Leone. As a comparison Issa Sesay, one of the senior commanders of … Continue reading

Posted in Big Men, Post Conflict | Tagged , | 1 Comment

African Conflicts and Informal Power: Big Men and Networks

 A book that I edited was released by Zed books about a month ago – have been too busy posting anything about it, but here is a link. There are great chapters by equally great researchers. Hope it will interest … Continue reading

Posted in Big Men, Informal networks | 4 Comments