Colombia’s largest rebel group, the FARC, vowed on Thursday to immediately and indefinitely ban the recruitment of child soldiers.
Until now, the FARC have formally only allowed the incorporation of recruits who are 15 and older. However, international humanitarian law dictates that no minor can take part in military activity.
To comply with international humanitarian law, the FARC announced to “no longer incorporate, from today on, minors of 17 [and younger] in the guerrilla ranks.”
The presumably ongoing recruitment of minors was a thorn in the flesh of human rights organizations and critics of the peace talks, who have been demanding the FARC to expand an earlier imposed unilateral ceasefire with abandoning the use of child soldiers and land mines.
Congress surely meant to do the right thing when, in the fall of 2008, it passed the Child Soldiers Prevention Act (CSPA). The law was designed to protect kids worldwide from being forced to fight the wars of Big Men. From then on, any country that coerced children into becoming soldiers was supposed to lose all U.S. military aid.
It turned out, however, that Congress -- in its rare moment of concern for the next generation -- had it all wrong. In its greater wisdom, the White House found countries like Chad and Yemen so vital to the national interest of the United States that it preferred to overlook what happened to the children in their midst.
Submitted by antimili-youth on Mon, 02/02/2015 - 17:08
Military recruiters must feel like Hansel and Gretel’s “wicked witch,” fattening up the children to eat them. With sexual violence, endless wars of occupation, fatalities, brain trauma, permanent disabilities and an epidemic of suicides, what they’re selling these days looks like a lot like a bad horror show.
With the chance of being sent into quagmires in Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan, Syria, Yemen, Somalia, etc. on one hand, the likelihood of being sexually assaulted on the other three-fourths and the specter of suicide among vets of all stripes¾you have to wonder how recruiters get anyone in the door. Newbies must not be reading the papers; all four active-duty services and five out of six reserve components met their recruiting goals in 2014, according to the Pentagon.
(Mweso) January 20, 2015 — "I joined twice, because I had nothing to do," explains Pierre, a 17-year-old former child solider in the Democratic Republic of Congo. "The first time was in 2006. The recruiters in the camp promised me food, a job, and a military career. It didn't take much to get me to go into the bush and try my luck."
A humanitarian organization found Pierre two years later and sent back him back to a camp for the internally displaced persons (IDPs). When asked which organization, Pierre shrugs, "white people."
By Kellan Howell - The Washington Times - Saturday, January 17, 2015
A poster with the message “On a mission for both God and Country” on display outside a recruiting station in Phoenix was removed Friday morning after it was brought to the attention of the the Army Recruiting Command.
Straight talk from soldiers, veterans and their family members tells what is missing from the sales pitches presented by recruiters and the military's marketing efforts. Produced by Telequest, Inc with support from AFSC. See http://youth4peace.org for more info.
Military recruitment tactics are increasingly fine-tuned to where a person lives, and how they perceive the world’s geography
‘The basic argument is that military recruitment has a geography. It happens in certain places, and maps on to broader trends in society – particularly inequality,’ says Matthew Rech, a researcher at Newcastle University who specialises in geopolitics and military recruitment.
‘There’s also an imagined geography to military recruitment. The military has to persuade people of a particular vision or version of the world, which is based on assumptions of cultural difference and otherness,’ says Rech.
Different services present the world in different ways. ‘The Royal Air Force, for instance, is distinct. It promises world travel. There’s also an idea bound up in the theatre and romance of flight. The pilot is a transcendent person,’ he says.
THEIR expertise has helped protect Britain for more than 350 years.
And a taste of the survival skills needed to be a Royal Marine were passed on to children in a dressing-up game with a difference.
As part of a survival-themed year of activities, The Royal Marines Museum, in Eastney Esplanade, Portsmouth, has been giving families the chance to wear marines’ combat gear for different types of conditions.
Now we’re in the winter months, the challenge to be a part of an Arctic convoy was set this weekend, including camouflaging in pure white snow and choosing the right equipment for sub-zero temperatures.
There was a choice of gear to wear, including jackets and helmets, as well as white mesh worn for colder climates.
Through articles, images, survey data and interviews, Sowing Seeds: The Militarisation of Youth and How to Counter It documents the seeds of war that are planted in the minds of young people in many different countries. However, it also explores the seeds of resistance to this militarisation that are being sown resiliently and creatively by numerous people. READ MORE