"In the last decade more than 2 million children have been killed, more than 4 million have survived physical mutilation and more than 1 million have been orphaned or separated from their families….ALL AS A RESULT OF WAR

UN Chronicle No.4. 1996

"War does not get much worse than January 6,1999. Teenage soldiers, out of their minds on drugs, rounded up entire neighborhoods and machine-gunned them or burned them alive in their houses. They tracked down anyone whom they deemed to be an enemy-journalists, Nigerians, doctors who treated wounded civilians-and tortured and killed them. They killed people who refused to give them money, or people who didn't give them enough money, or people who looked at them wrong. They raped women and killed nuns and abducted priests and drugged children to turn them into fighters. They favored Tupac T-shirts and fancy haircuts and spoke Krio-the common language of Freetown-to one another because they didn't share a tribal language. Some were mercenaries from Liberia and Burkina Faso, a few were white men thought to be from Ukraine, but most were just from the bush. They had been fighting since they were eight or nine, some of them, and sported such names as Colonel Bloodshed, Commander Cut Hands, Superman, Mr. Die, and Captain Backblast. They fought their way west in Freetown, neighborhood by neighborhood, through Calaba Town and Wellington and Kissy, and they weren't stopped until they had nearly overrun the ECOMOG headquarters and Wilberforce Barracks."

                           Sebastian Junger



"One child returned to his family’s land and found his father’s throat slashed , his brother’s throat slashed, and his mother and his sister raped, their heads smashed….And when one has no one left on the earth, neither father nor mother, neither brother nor sister, and when one is small, a little boy in a damned and barbaric country where everyone slashes each other’s throats, what does one do? Of course one becomes a child soldier, a small soldier, to get one’s fair share of eating and butchering as well. Only that remains…."

Ahmadou Kouroma

Allah n’est pas oblige (Allah  Is Not Obliged)


   "A doctor in Grozny described the effect of war on children. 'They have become more aggressive, nervous, cruel, impolite. They don't respect elders. They're dangerous to be around. They have psychological illnesses, terrible emotions', the doctor said. 'The younger they are, the less they understand and the more they forget. Starting at about 10, they see and know everything and they'll remember it for life.'

Sebastian Smith

Allah's Mountains: The Battle for Chechnya


Article:: CHILDREN OF WAR by Judith Miller and Paul Lewis…NYT

Book: "Caution: Children at War" by P.W. Singer


© 2001



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