First Kill Your Family

First Kill Your Family
First Kill Your Family

First Kill Your Family

Child Soldiers of Uganda and the Lord's Resistance Army
By Peter Eichstaedt


320 Pages, 6 x 9

Formats: Trade Paper, PDF, EPUB, Mobipocket

Trade Paper, $16.95 (CA $18.95) (US $16.95)

ISBN 9781613748091

Rights: WOR

Chicago Review Press (Apr 2013)
Lawrence Hill Books


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Former child soldiers, refugees, and other victims speak out about their war-torn homeland

Told through the voices of those who have suffered, this illuminating exposé examines how a forgotten region of one of Africa’s most promising nations—Uganda, dubbed "the pearl of Africa" by Winston Churchill—has been systematically destroyed by a bloody, senseless, and seemingly endless war that has gone largely unnoticed by the rest of the world. For the past 20 years, the Lord’s Resistance Army has ravaged northern Uganda and has been led by the reclusive Joseph Kony, a former witch doctor and self-professed spirit medium. Through the large-scale abduction and manipulation of children, Kony transformed his army into an efficient killing machine that has murdered nearly 100,000 and displaced two million people. Kony utilized the society's pervasive belief in witchcraft to instill cultlike convictions in his fighters. This insightful analysis delves into the war’s foundations and argues that, much like Rwanda’s genocide, international intervention is needed to stop Uganda’s virulent cycle of violence. This updated paperback edition includes a new afterword by the author that discusses developments since 2008, including failed attempts to capture Joseph Kony and the controversial Kony 2012 video.


"Heartfelt . . . A close analysis of [an] underreported crisis."  —Publishers Weekly

"In-depth reporting . . . an intimate spin."  —Kirkus Reviews

"You must read this powerful book. Peter Eichstaedt has given voice to the victims of the largely unheard-of tragedy of Uganda. This story calls out to our very humanity."  —Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu

"A book filled with haunting images that leave one groping for answers."  —Mac Maharaj, South African author and activist

"This book is a call to action to help our brothers and sisters in Africa that we can no longer ignore."  —John Dau, president, John Dau Sudan Foundation, and coauthor, God Grew Tired of Us: A Memoir

"This fine firsthand account should be read by anyone seeking to grapple with the challenges of war and peace in coming decades."  —Douglas Farah, author, Merchant of Death and Blood from Stones

Author Biography

Peter Eichstaedt is a veteran journalist who has reported from locations worldwide, including Slovenia, Moldova, Afghanistan, Albania, Armenia, and Uganda. He worked most recently as the Afghanistan Country Director of the Institute for War and Peace Reporting, during which time he managed six journalism development programs, including the Afghan Investigative Journalism Fund, a one-year project to build investigative journalism reporting capacity. He is the former Africa editor for the Institute of War and Peace Reporting in The Hague and the author of Above the Din of WarConsuming the Congo, First Kill Your Family, If You Poison Us, and Pirate State. He lives in Denver, Colorado.