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REDAWAN EL SOULEIMAN, LIBYAN REBEL

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. . We're at the Ittihad school, where I taught. This was before the war. Look at that... . The school was bombed in March. On March 17 to be precise. Gaddafi's troops hit it with GRAD rockets. . We were gathered in this room, then we took the pupils into the gardens It was an ordinary school life. I didn't expect to see this war, to see my school bombed. Now it's a ghost school. There was so much life here before... . . . This is where Amani sat. Here, Mouna Khalifa, here, Aaza... . I remember a pupil named Aïcha. She was so disruptive, I put her in the front row. . . The destruction of my neighbourhood and my school forced me to take up arms. I had never fought in my life. It suddenly came over me. Gaddafi dared to attack education and knowledge. He destroyed our school and my accounting class. That's why I am now fighting. I have no choice. I had to trade my teacher's pen for a gun. . . These are Gaddafi's tanks. They were posted around Ajdabiya last March, positioned at every road into the town. Their guns were targeted on Ajdabiya and they fired blindly. That's when the first French air strikes began. All the tanks were demolished. You can see where the missiles hit. . . The bloodshed has to stop now. Thousands have already died in Libya. In Ajdabiya, Benghazi... everywhere. I've lost many friends and neighbours. Death has become the norm. We don't even have time to mourn our dead. A word to the family and that's it. Condolences are for after the war. There will be more time to be upset. . . It's time that we are done with this war. Civilians must lay down their guns. I want to get back to my books and pencils. They're much more useful than a rifle. Rifles are death. Pencils are knowledge and life. . . . . Pack the rockets into the crate. . . Redwan, where are you going? With God's help, to the front. To the front. . The fighting is about 40km 40 km from here. . I dream of getting back to my school. There's nothing better for me. War is fine in the movies but not in real life. These kids learn quickly. It's their first time at the front. I just hope we all return alive later.

Video Details

Duration: 4 minutes and 31 seconds
Country: Libya
Language: English
Views: 350
Posted by: wassup on Sep 13, 2011

Redwan el Souleiman has taken up arms to fight Gaddafi's hordes. Before the Revolution, he taught accounting at a school in Ajdabiya to the east of Libya, a gentle life brutally interrupted by the old regime's bloody crackdown.

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