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Image, your entire family, killed, your town in rubble, nowhere to go, you go to seek shelter at the any place where protection is given, you then get forced into killing, and a life of fighting, when rescued, people treat you like a monster and sentence you to jail or even the death penalty, all at a very young age. This is the childhood of many kids in war driven places, people treat young children who were forced into murder as the monster but really they are the victim, I believe that child soldiers should be Amnistated from the crimes unless 2 years of rehabilitation has not worked for many different reasons, to start off many of the children were drugged and desensitised when they seek shelter, they faced tragedy from the loss of their family and there homes, they then are forced to face what they did being jailed. This should not be the aftermath of these child soldiers and we should grant them another chance at a happy life.
To start off many of these children are forced by Drugs and their commanders/ leading officers, (according to a interview by the author of “Child Soldier”) Held at gunpoint or left with no other option than to seek shelter at a terrorist camp, many child’s brains are not fully developed until they are 20 and they all do what their emotions tell them to and don’t think logicly, they also are fresh out of seeing many people killed and are not in the right mindset when they are picked up by theses terrorist group. This is just one story of a child soldier.
My first reason that child soldiers should get a second chance is because of the fact that many child soldiers are forced, that means they did not willingly join the terrorist group, obviously some do, and those who are in a terrible condition and are actually happy even with rehabilitation should be prosecuted. Other then that the children were forced by gunpoints, manipulated by drugs, with nowhere else to go, and there entire family dead or gone, where else are they to go? The answer is clearly wherever shelter is offered, sadly a lot of the places these war devastated children end up is at a terrorist camp. I believe in circumstances where the children have not recovered after years of rehabilitation should then be trailed. The reason i believe we should use this method is because it gives the drug addicted children a chance to prove that is was not the fault of the children but the fault of their leading officers and whatever else there were forced to be on (drugs, forced, threatened ETC).
My second reason is that they had come out of facing tragedy and other problems, for instance many children had just seen there family and friends getting slaughtered, they also have been wandering around their town and must have been very dehydrated and hungry, these factors play huge roles in decision making in the brain, speaking of brains, young children’s brains are not fully developed until they are around 20, that may not sound important, but the last part of the brain to develop is the frontal lobe (the part in charge of decision making), this means that theses children run off of their emotions, like if they’re lonely they seek help where they can find it. See, there putting on trail people whose brains aren’t weren’t fully developed when the crimes are committed.
Some people may say that Child Soldiers who knew what they were getting into and willingly agreed should be prosecuted, as i stated before, we should allow 2 years for rehabilitation and then if that does not change the sincerity of their regret/apology then should trialed for what they have done. The reason i am proposing this is because some children generally become sorry and will plead for mercy, while some (like Omar Khadr) will take pride in what they did, even after years of rehabilitation and therapy. While others will plead for forgiveness and a second chance.
In Conclusion child soldiers should get another chance at a better life for many different reasons, for one, they were brainwashed and forced, they faced tragedy at the loss of family and friends as well as seeing many people killed, i believe there are many different things we can do to help the children in these war drivin places, for one, we can send military soldiers to replace soldiers as well as build treatment camps with medics and other therapeutic accessories needed for the recovery and rehabilitation of these kids, we could also send troops to pick up the children and send them to a safe place (U,S or a camp). There are many different things we can do to help these children. It’s just a matter of if people are willing to help.
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