Stolen Childhood- Child Soldiers

1434 Words 6 Pages
Children in America may spend their evenings doing homework or watching television, or some adolescents may have jobs. This is normal for persons under the age of 18 in America. However right now, in other parts of the world, children are being bought, sold, and recruited into armies, where their fates and evenings are left in the hands of their leaders. Many people wonder why children are so often recruited into armies, and what happens to them once they are enlisted. Many different variables, including what are called push and pull factors, can play a role in the process of turning a child into a soldier.
The term “push factor” is used to describe any external source of pressure to enlist or be recruited. These factors can include
…show more content…
This loophole has allowed many tyrants to enslave children and escape punishment. These are just a few of one group of factors that can play a role in becoming child soldiers. While “push factors” are external forces of pressure, “pull factors” refer to more internal struggles. Some factors could include desire for acceptance and religious honor. Some militant groups had “voluntary” recruitment because the men were too old to fight. Also, in some countries, the boys saw fighting as a personal honor. In Sri Lanka during their civil war, the Tamil Tigers, a military group, had banned joining any other military groups. This group was one of the major separatist groups during this time. The Tamil Tigers had an estimated 7,000-10,000 soldiers, and about 20-40% of these were estimated to be children, despite the fact that they claimed to never use child soldiers (Somasundaram). This trend of using children as cheap labor is one of the reasons why the up and coming generation is already hindered with setbacks. While the older group of people in the world are simply power hungry, the children are taught from a young age to seek acceptance and approval from authority. In many countries, the children may go as far as to be easily swayed into military service. This is demonstrated in Liberia, where the mistreatment and discrimination against women instills an inferiority complex in females across the country. This also makes it easy for men to enslave young girls in sex

More about Stolen Childhood- Child Soldiers

Open Document