After spending some time in Sierra Leone Africa I will never look at diamonds in the same way. If you have seen the 2006 movie Blood Diamond you are familiar with the 11 year civil war that in great part was over the control of the small West African nation’s vast natural resources. In the movie, you see a fictionalized account of the very real practice of forcing locals into slave labor to mine diamonds that were then sold on the black market.
It has been referred to as the ‘resource curse;’ nations in the developing world that are exploited for their natural resources. It is certainly nothing new. The Spanish exploration of the new world was in search of wealth while European colonialism across the globe was based on the same model.
Today in Sierra Leone, the civil war is over, yet the conditions in diamond mining areas of Sierra Leone remain bleak. Some of that country’s poorest spend their days mired in the muck hoping to find stones they then, will only be paid the tiniest fraction of their worth.
In today’s video blog, I will show you how a group of Oklahomans are working to improve the lives of orphans from the Blood Diamond Civil War. Work, that if successful, will outshine the sparkle of any stone that has contributed to such suffering.