Child Soldiers Essay

Document Type:Thesis

Subject Area:History

Document 1

How old are you? 3. What are your parents’ names are they alive? 4. Where do you live currently? 5. Did you go to school and what level of education did you attain? 6. At what age did you become a soldier? 7. What have you ever been forced or tortured to do anything? If yes, what? 18. Have you ever felt the need to stop serving as a soldier? 19. Have you ever tried to escape from your leaders? If yes, what happened? 20. Have your fellow child soldiers tried to escape? What happened? 21. What are some experiences of some of your friends who you work or worked with as a soldier? 22. Some children who have been soldiers fear to undergo interviews in fear of remembering painful details of the past or having the feeling of insecurity even when they are no longer soldiers.

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Analysis In my interview with a South Sudanese child soldier, I discovered that children are used in armed conflict by commanders from both government and opposition leaders. These children are abused, assaulted and undergo trauma. Some are abducted while others joined the forces to keep their communities safe. They experience starvation, injuries and watch their fellow children being killed. After the training, the few who manage to be alive are used in missions like killing. The leaders order the young soldiers to kill or otherwise they get killed. The availability of light and mobile weapons like short guns has influenced the use of child soldier because children can be able to carry and use the weapons conveniently (Blattman, 2006). When the forces go to attack a community or a target group, boys (Soldiers) are forced to rape women and if the girls or women resist, they get killed.

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These boys are prone to different sexually transmitted diseases they get during the rapes. They call them survival tactics. Children who cannot fight are used to pass messages to their leaders’ rivals and to spy on various targets. Child soldiers are also used in the suicidal bombing. Recently, the United Nations has received very many reports on children who have been used on bombing missions. The most influential community with suicide bombing is the Muslim. Other drugs given to them include alcohol and marijuana. Some children become addicted to these drugs turning them into slaves to their leaders and drugs. There are those who cannot function without them, others cannot even be able to speak without using the drugs. Regardless of how the child soldiers are used in committing crimes, they suffer adverse effects of their actions for the rest of their lives.

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Some die, develops disabilities and sicknesses. When the parents of these children are left behind after abduction, they suffer from depression. They fear for their children’s lives. Every time child soldiers are rescued, these parents hope that their children are among the rescued. The social lives of these children cannot be the same even when they return to their families. Some because of permanent injuries they suffered during their soldering period, they cannot carry out some activities carried out by children of their age. However, on the brighter side of post-soldiering children is that they participate in community and political lives than other children. Observations Very little is done to prevent child soldering and support child soldiers when they return.

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The law provides that any person who has not attained the age of 18 years is a child and should not be used in any conflict-related issues. The child cannot be introduced to fighting and weapon using skills. It is a criminal war to introduce any child less than 15 years to armed practices according to international law. The government should ensure that children from the communities are not trained to protect it but the adults. In cases where the government of such societies is not firm enough to be responsible, United Nation system should send its military troops to the communities to keep the peace. Some other children join these forces because they do not know the dangers and the consequences associated with soldering at a young age (Lynn, 2006).

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UN system should introduce programs that teach children the dangers associated with child soldering and why they should avoid joining such forces. Victims of child soldering when back to the society have been perceived as outsiders in the history. The following are some of the historical findings under this topic. Past events keep recurring because either there were no recommendations to solve the problems or because the recommendations were not implemented. Child soldiering is a major problem in most developing countries yet it has been ignored for years. Abduction is the major way through which children are recruited to be soldiers. Technology has greatly contributed to child soldering since the invention of light weapons which can be handled by children conveniently.

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