|Unrepentant Liberian Tyrant|
Charles Ghankay Taylor
To the last moment of his freedom, Charles Ghankay Taylor's megalomania remained on full display for the world to see. The authorities overseeing the former Liberian rebel war lord turned President's incarceration just refused his latest request to join his RUF buddies Issa Sesay and others in a special prison in Rwanda.
Charles Taylor who just a few weeks ago had his fifty year conviction for war crimes in Sierra Leone upheld by an appellate branch of the Special Court for Sierra Leone, has been making more demands since his arrest and transfer to the Hague than the queen of England herself.
A former Liberian criminal fugitive, Charles Ghankay Taylor mysteriously escaped detention in USA in the 1980s, came to Africa and was able to use the support of former Libyan tyrant Muammar Ghadafi and Burkina Faso despot Blaise Campaore to launch a popular rebellion against the murderous regime of Samuel Kenyon Doe in the small West African country of Liberia.
|War Lord Taylor|
After years of terrible rebel strife, Charles Taylor was elected President by the war weary people of his country in democratic elections that was supposed to end the bloody conflict. Many people voted for him because of the fear of what he would have done, had he not won, as he still had thousands of armed murderous youths in the countryside. Furthermore his depravity, cruelty and absolute disregard for human life had been put on full display during the horrible years of civil war in his country.
Upon assuming power, Taylor, instead of behaving like a national leader, decided to use his position to humiliate, intimidate and payback his political adversaries and use his control of state resources to enrich himself. He became the grand chief patron of the Revolutionary United Front (RUF), a rebel group in diamond rich neighboring Sierra Leone that was an offshoot of his National Patriotic Front for Liberia. (NPFL)
As President Taylor used his influence and resources to provide arms, ammunition and manpower to his RUF allies in exchange for the country's diamonds and used his presidency as leverage to thwart every effort at achieving lasting peace in Sierra Leone. He was famously reported to have given international super model Naomi Campbell a small bag of uncut diamonds on a trip to South Africa, just to express his admiration. His disrespect for Sierra President Ahmed Tejan Kabba was no secret, a grave error that would one day come back to hunt him.
|Taylor's Biggest Sierra Leone Fan|
Eventually, Taylor's sins caught up with him, as his adversaries launched a counter rebellion that gave him no other option but to exit Liberia to save his skin. He was exiled to Nigeria with a promise to lay low. With growing clamor for him to face justice, he attempted as always to escape Nigeria, but was caught, bound, brought to Sierra Leone and sent to the Hague in Netherlands, from where he was tried and sentenced to fifty years in jail for crimes against the people of Sierra Leone. Unfortunately for Taylor, his crimes against his own people had made him flee, but it was crimes against his next door neighbors that would ultimately brought his downfall.
|Taylor Asks to use Toilet|
Taylor's stint in jail did nothing to lessen his monumental arrogance, as he and his team set out to minimize the impact of his influence in Sierra Leone and portray him as a friendly and benevolent neighbor whose sole interest had been to bring an end to the Sierra Leone conflict, and he had had no influence over his RUF allies. The special court of course did not buy Taylor's claims of innocence and sentenced him to fifty years in jail, an effective life sentence as he was now way past his prime after years of running around in the bush, chasing after power. After his sentence, Taylor decided to do one last Houdini act and appeal his conviction, but unfortunately for him, the court found his appeal to be without merit and reaffirmed his conviction.
|Mrs. Ghankay Taylor|
"My Husband is Innocent"
In Hague, Taylor has been a constant irritation to the prison authorities in the European metropolis. His main complaint has been the poor nature of the food. Who can blame him? From eating food fit for a president to eating mass produced mashed potato, gravy and Dutch cheese, I can't help but sympathize. No more bush meat from Kakata.
In his blind arrogance, Taylor fails to envision the thousands of his amputated and maimed victims who would give the world to eat the three meals a day that he is complaining about. He may have thought that prison was a hotel trip involving a spa treatment and my only regret was that he was not sent to New York's Riker's Island, but he may be sent to some comfortable over regulated British prison, where he will be pampered, spoiled and allowed to grow fat until he one day dies from a massive myocardial infarction.
Taylor is truly incorrigible, demanding where he was to be jailed, so that he will be "close to his family," while the bones of thousands of his victims lie in forests and unknown graves. Of course what he truly wants is to join his RUF allies in Rwanda so that they may make a break for it if Rwanda descends into conflict.
He states that he fears being attacked if he is jailed in Britain. I wish Sierra Leone had a good relationship with Russia, so that he could be shipped to Siberia and see the difference between the Russian winter and Her Majesty's prison.
Of course Taylor has staunch supporters in the Sierra Leone government, notably the President's Special Executive Assistant Blyden who publicly grieved when Taylor was initially jailed in April 2012, blaming the people of Sierra Leone for the conflict. To compensate her she was made special assistant, in the sick tragedy that is the politics of Sierra Leone.
|Charles Taylor Jr. "Chuckie"|
Charles Taylor's son Charles Chucky Taylor Jr. an American citizen was tried some years ago in USA for war crimes committed in Liberia while his father was president and he was head of a notorious security unit. He was ordered to pay millions of dollars to five of the victims that he tortured and sentenced to 97 years in jail.
As Mark Anthony famously said, "the evil that men do live after them." Taylor has joined the ranks of Hitler, Amin, Bokassa, Mengistu and the rest of the world's tyrants who we will remember long after the good people they killed are forgotten.