<National Report>According to sources at the Pentagon, Joseph Kony, the former leader of the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA), has been gunned down in a remote area of the South Sudan by members of Seal Team 6. The LRM is a guerrilla group founded in Uganda then spread to other areas within the region including Democratic Republic of Congo, Central African Republic and South Sudan. In late March, President Obama sent 150 special-operations personnel and four aircrafts to join the pursuit of Kony.
One White House official, who agreed to speak with National Report on the condition of anonymity had this to say: “The hunt for Kony that began several years ago is now over. The recent expansion of boots on the ground, as well an increase in drone capabilities, accelerated the mission. President Obama gave the final orders to assassinate the former LRA leader as issues with extradition and trials would be hard to handle in the US. The President obviously considers this to be a major accomplishment.”
The carefully rehearsed operation struck about 1:20a.m. Friday local time. About 40 troops, largely Navy SEALs, were involved. According to Pentagon officials, photos of Kony’s dead body do exist, but will not be release to the public. Officials are expected to eventually release a corpse photo, as has been done previously with famous villains such as Che Guevara and Saddam Hussein, but that information will remain classified in the short term.
Four other adult males, believed to be part of Kony’s inner circle, were also killed in the 45-minute raid as well as two females who the Pentagon are considering “collateral damage”.
Kony had been accused of ordering the abduction of children to become sex slaves and child solders. The LRM amassed an estimated 66,000 children who roamed the region. In 2005, Kony was indicted for war crimes and crimes against humanity by the International Criminal Court in The Hague, Netherlands but has evaded capture since. Kony’s army has spent years plundering villages, mutilating civilians and kidnapping children across a large swath of central Africa. Kony gained attention in March 2012 when a 30-minute documentary titled Kony 2012 was released by film maker Jason Russell for the campaign group Invisible Children Inc.