David Axe photo

Monkeys Attacked the Peacekeepers

A war photo a day #33

Eight years. Seven wars. More death and destruction than I care to recount. I’ve been covering armed conflict since 2005. Every battlefield has its stories … and its unforgettable images. Follow me through my career at war, one jarring, haunting or sublime photo a day until I run out.

In late 2010 I traveled to eastern Democratic Republic of Congo to report on the world’s efforts to restore peace to what had long been one of the world’s bloodiest war zones. U.N. peacekeepers built roads, escorted food aid and patrolled remote villages against bandits, rebels and marauders from the Lord’s Resistance Army.

The elements were the gravest danger to the thousands of blue helmet-wearing U.N. troops from Morocco, Indonesia, Bangladesh, Pakistan and India. Soldiers described being ambushed by troops of angry monkeys and nearly trampled by startled elephants.

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