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Ishmael is afraid of becoming a soldier, but yet, he is more afraid of dying. We know this because he was recruited into the rebel army and took part in horrific war crimes.
A Long Way Gone
He's afraid of DYING? LOL!
He's afraid of dying because his family was killed ... by the rebels.
Dying. And war.
Being killed. Having his younger and older brothers be killed along with his mum and dad.