Armed and Underage

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Vincenzo Celauro
Reading 6
Report about the article „Armed & Underage“
In the article “Armed & Underage”, Jeffrey Gettleman writes about innocent children that are forced to serve as soldiers involuntarily. A group against the use of children soldiers defines a child soldier as “anyone under the age of 18 who is a member of government armed forces or any other armed group”. At first the author presents why and how children are used as soldiers. The problem is that parents often can’t support their children, so they have to give them away to the army. For the military children soldiers are perfect, because they are “easily manipulated, intensely loyal, fearless, and, most important, in endless supply”. They are often seen as ideal weapons and are used by rebels and terrorists as suicide bombers, combatants ,spies, and to plant mines. The second issue the author writes about are the critical areas in Africa, where a lot of bad people has nothing more in their heads than “plunder, greed, and power “. Because of many wars between and inside Africa’s countries the criminality rises, therefore rebels use often children soldiers to fight e.g., for their mineral resources like gold and diamonds. Although the U.S. government support Somalia soldiers, they are against the use of children soldiers. However, the Somalia government admits that “ they are trying to find anyone who could carry a weapon”. Furthermore it is difficult to find out how old the children are. The article goes on to tell about the conditions of the children who are doomed to serve as a soldier. The children often don’t have a choice. They grew up with criminality, their psyches are damaged and often they are leaved by their parents. Instead of going to school or playing in a park, they have been “brainwashed” and work for the military. The article “Armed & Underage” shows significant problems about the use of children around the world. Nowadays the international justice...
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