Argument On Child Soldiers

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For years the use of children in both conflicts between states and civil wars has been evident. Children are forced by commanders through false promises, drugs and things which you can’t even imagine, to kill innocent civilians, other children and even their own families. Universally, the use of child soldiers has been frowned upon as both unacceptable and abhorrent. Despite this, in the last ten years over two million children have been killed, over one million orphaned, over six million have been left seriously injured or permanently disabled and over 10 million have been diagnosed with psychological trauma. However, the question still remains whether or not child soldiers should be held accountable for their crimes. In other words are child soldiers the victims or the perpetrators?

The debate regarding child soldiers has prolonged for years and as of yet there appears to be no definite answer. Both sides of the argument bring up strong points, but it is about time an answer is brought up.

On one side of the argument, many believe that child soldiers are not morally responsible for the actions they perform. More often than not children have no say in whether they enlist or not and once recruited the children become brainwashed through the use of drugs and alcohol. The drugs
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For instance, many believe that child soldiers are mere replicas of child criminals; child criminals are prosecuted. Over the course of the past decades child soldiers have been responsible for some of the most brutal acts in wartime, such as rape, mutilation and mass killings of innocent civilians. Most domestic laws state that the age of criminal responsibility is much lower than 18 (child soldiers are generally considered children under the age of 18). If a child can be convicted for murder under these domestic laws there should be no exception for child soldier’s just because their crimes occurred in

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