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Weapon of War
Netherlands/Congo, 2009, 59 minutes, Color, DVD, French/Swahili, Subtitled
Order No. W111033
In no other country has sexual violence matched the scale of brutality reached in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). During nearly two decades of conflicts between rebels and government forces, an estimated 150,000 Congolese women and girls fell victim to mass rape. That figure continues to rise.

WEAPON OF WAR, an award-winning film honored by Amnesty International, journeys to the heart of this crisis, where we meet its perpetrators. In personal interviews, soldiers and former combatants provide openhearted but shocking testimony about rape in the DRC. Despite differing views on causes or criminal status, all reveal how years of conflict, as well as discrimination against women, have normalized brutal sexual violence. We also see former rapists struggling to change their own or others’ behavior, and reintegrate into their communities.

A companion to FIGHTING THE SILENCE and its portraits of Congolese rape survivors, this indispensable resource provides unique insights into strategic uses of rape as a military weapon - and the motives of the men who employ it.


  • Movies That Matter Film Festival, The Netherlands
  • International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam (IDFA)
  • Full Frame Documentary Film Festival
  • Warsaw International Film Festival Planet Doc Review, WINNER, Amnesty International Award
  • UNAFF - United Nations Association Film Festival

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    "…viewers will better understand the chilling traumatization of war and of how soldiers gain a sickness that will not go away…Weapon of War is not merely a tale of brutality, but also of the transformation of some who have ‘come back to themselves’…"
    Dr. Peyibomi Soyinka-Airewele
    Associate Professor, International/African Politics, Ithaca College

    "The filmmakers go beyond mere description of the crimes, searching for solutions that would allow the victims and perpetrators to reclaim their sense of dignity."
    Planet Doc Review Film Festival, Warsaw, Poland

    “Recommended. The film strongly conveys…how the violence and inhumanity spawned by war impact individual lives and nations.”
    Educational Media Reviews Online

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    Weapon of War is included in the following Special Collections.
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WMM offers film collections on a variety of specific subject areas, including the collections VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN: Ending the Silence, BODY IMAGE, and AFRICAN-AMERICAN: Celebrate the Lives of African-American Women.

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Women Make Movies is a multicultural, multiracial, non-profit media arts organization which facilitiates the production, promotion, distribution, and exhibition of independent films and videotapes by and about women. contact us