I believe that Ismael's rehabilitation was very important. It's thanks to it that he could have a normal life again. He was a bloodthirsty child solider jacked up on drugs and violence. It's obvious that rehabilitation is possible. It's the patient that shows if it works, and it clearly get Ishmael his life back. I would be willing to let Ishmael in my neighborhood because he wants to have a normal life, and explains this in the later chapters of the book.
The one thing I will always remember from reading this book is the struggle of conflict. It happens in almost every chapter; from the civil war with the rebels and the government, or the internal conflict the Ishmael struggles with. One quote from Ishmael says "That didn't make me immune from the guilt that I felt for what I had done. Nonetheless, it lightened the burdensome memories and gave me strength to think about things." (pg. 166.)
The book makes me think about what happened to Ishmael after the events of the book. After a little research, I have learned about how the UNICEF helped him escape Freetown and sent to New York to live with his foster mother. He attended the United Nations International School. After high school he enrolled at Oberlin College and graduated in 2004 with a degree in Political Science. He turned his life around and fulfilled his dream of living in New York.
|Ishmael Beah, with his book A Long Way Gone|