The Politics of Persecution

by Melani McAlister
published in MER249

The video opens with a young Sudanese boy being interviewed outside a hut. “They wanted me to become a Muslim,” he says through a translator. “But I told them I wouldn’t. I am a Christian.” “It was then,” a deep male voiceover intones, “that he was thrown on a burning fire.” The boy looks away from the camera as he lifts up his shirt to reveal horrific burns over one side of his thin body. In Sudan, the video later explains, “a government set on jihad” is persecuting Christians. There is footage of soldiers, then of women lying on the ground, their mutilated limbs and open wounds in view. Bodies -- violated, damaged bodies -- are on display.