Omar Khadr's Oppression Of Children In The Military

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Hello, my name is Cole Judickas and I am a student at Wayzata West middle school.
Imagine your parents were killed in the acts of war, and you were left for dead all alone. What would you do? Where would you go? This is an ongoing issue around the world. Many of these kids frantically flee to military bases seeking refuge and safety not knowing what lied ahead of them. These kids were forcefully trained and manipulated into joining the military. This issue was overlooked for many years and just now became a major issue when Omar Khadr told his heartbreaking story about his experiences being a child soldier and made many rethink their decision if the U.S is really doing the right thing by brutally punishing these innocent kids. Many believe …show more content…

Many of these kids were manipulated by drugs, having their loved ones killed, or military officials demanding obscured amounts of money that they knew they couldn't supply, giving them no choice but to join the army. To illustrate this, a young boy describes his experience. "An army recruitment unit arrived at my village and demanded two new recruits. Those who could not lay 3000 kayts had to join the army" (Zaw Tun 2004). These poor families were already in need to begin with, and could barely pay for food and shelter let alone pay for protecting their kids from the violent acts of war. No mother wants their kid to end up being a killer or having the reputation of being a hardened war criminal. Every parent wants the best for their kids, they want them to grow up with a future and have shining careers just like us. To brutally punish these kids for crimes they were forced to do against their will is wrong and goes against what the U.S stands …show more content…

For instance, a report from states that “Children are often desired as recruits because they can be easily intimidated and indoctrinated. They lack the mental maturity and judgment to express consent or to fully understand the implications of their actions… and are pushed by their adult commanders into perpetrating atrocities,” the report said.(JOHANNESBURG, October 6, 2011). This report shows how these kids are not the criminals, they are the real victims and are just confused on what is going on. After recruitment If these kids showed any fear at all or refused to carry out an order, they faced severe consequences and even death. To give an example, a Rwandan refugee talks about how scared he, and probably many other kids felt “ I was so afraid of dying, but my friends warned me that if the rebel commanders detected any fear in me they would kill me”(Charles age 12, Rwandan refugee). This goes to show that these kids are not hardened war criminals, they are fearful and are too young and naive to be ready for the front lines of war. These kids should not be the ones at fault the commanders and the ones giving the orders should be the ones punished and thrown in jail for they have committed the real crimes by taking these kids futures away from them and took advantage of their lack of

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