An Open Letter to LURD's Collective Leadership

By Jesse B. Ghoah

The Perspective
Atlanta, Georgia

April 15, 2002

Dear Ladies and Gentlemen:

I am writing to the collective leadership of LURD because I don’t know anybody in LURD. Additionally, I want to assure you that it is not the intent of this letter to criticize LURD or the activities of LURD. I, like members of LURD, and many other concerned Liberians, am opposed to Charles Taylor’s leadership in Liberia and would like to see him go one way or the other. However, to see that happen, one has to have an agenda and strategies to accomplish it.

LURD's Fighters

Therefore, not being a member of LURD, but a concerned Liberian, I would like to know what is LURD’s agenda. I am fully aware of the fact that LURD doesn’t owe me any explanation of its agenda; but again, I, like you, and most other concerned Liberians, we are all in the same boat. Now, for those of us who are not members of LURD, might be supportive, if we are convinced that your style and method of ridding Liberia of Charles Taylor are the best ways to go. It is in that spirit of oneness that I am writing this open letter to the leadership of LURD to explain your agenda to those of us who do not know what it is. You can explain your agenda by answering the following questions:

1. What is the numerical strength (No. of members) of your organization?

2. How much grassroots (ordinary Liberians) support do you have to conduct your war?

3. It has been almost two (2) years since you took up arms against Charles Taylor’s government. What gains or successes have you made within that time period?

4. How are you financing the war?

5. Have you thought about the fact that if you are successful in getting rid of Charles Taylor militarily, that you would be continuing the same precedent that Charles Taylor put in place with Doe? That is, any group can take up arms against any Government that it doesn’t like, and overthrow it.

6. If you are successful in removing Charles Taylor by force, is there any one individual amongst you who will assume the presidency of Liberia or is it going to be governance by committees?

7. I understand there are many smart and educated people amongst you. If this is true, how is it that Charles Taylor has made you look like jackasses? You have fallen in every trap that he has set for you - you accept credit for crimes you did not commit, why? For most of us, such act is considered to be an intellectual dishonesty.

8. Do you believe that your credibility with the Liberian people is enhanced when you claim responsibility for things you did not do? (The Klay incident, which led to the emergency declaration, and the Kakata incident recently, where it is alleged that two Lebanese citizens were murdered by your organization).

9. Do you realistically believe that you can remove Charles Taylor from power by force? If yes, any idea how long it will take to accomplish that?

10. How would you feel if Charles Taylor should decide to postpone or cancel the election scheduled for 2003, if the so called war between you and his government is still on?

11. I understand there are 12 or 13 political parties in Liberia. Isn’t there a single one of those parties that your organization has common ground with?

12. You organization did not attend the recent Abuja reconciliation conference. Your excuse was your invitation did not arrive in time. Is that the real truth or could it be because you did not have any good ideas to bring to the table?

13. Have you done any assessment of your organization standing with the Liberia people? Do you think that most Liberian people believe in your organization’s war activities?

14. Do you think that Charles Taylor respects you as a worthy opponent?

15. Last but not least, do you think that you owe the Liberian people, the very people you are trying to liberate, the truth? Tell them the truth about the Klay incident as well as the Kakata incident. Did you have anything to do with those incidents?

In conclusion, ladies and gentlemen, I hope that this letter will not be considered as being adversarial; instead, I hope you will look at it as a letter coming from a concerned Liberian who wants to see improvement in the lives of the Liberian people. I want to assure you that by answering the questions I posed above will enlighten me and other Liberians. I am also sure that the answers to these questions will not only educate us but also tell us what your organization is about; and maybe even change some minds to be supportive of your organization.

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