Each day, billions of people turn on their television, radio, or open the newspaper to see, hear, or read the news. On the rare occasion that a station has an empty repertoire of stories about politics, robberies, murders, or other general bad news, they turn to third-world, war-torn countries. "Yes, they're still third-world, and yes, they're still fighting." What the public does not hear about in these generic reports about Sierra Leone’s brutal fighting or Uganda's civil war are the children. When reading the newspaper, you can’t hear the screams of dying children, the last cries of the world's very future. Watching an anchorman in the studio, you can't see a child missing several limbs or a child disfigured beyond recognition. So the large majority of the world knows nothing about child soldiers, and they carry on their lives, not realizing that it could have been their children screaming in pain at this very moment, in the last seconds of life.
Over 300,000 child soldiers exist in the world today. These aren't just children. In many cases, they are the future of their countries. They are the connections from one family to the next. They are the hopes and dreams of one entire generation. They are the children of war, and they are dying.
Where to start?
This site has a wealth of information ready for you to absorb. Why not get brought up to speed with our FAQ on Child Soldiers? Alternately, you can start by digging through the country dossiers to find out which countries currently have child soldiers and find out details about the country's situation. If you want to get down to the real specifics right away, use the Specific topics navigation box to the left.
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