Nobel Prize winner won’t punish countries that use child soldiers
October 3rd, 2012
If I could single out one of the most odious practices in war, I guess it would be the use of children as soldiers like many African countries do to augment their dwindling male populations. And probably the most liberal way to end the scourge would probably be to cut off US taxpayer dollars to countries who subscribe to the practice. But, our Nobel peace prize winning president won’t even take that simple measure according to Foreign Policy Magazine;
Last week Obama issued a presidential memorandum waiving penalties under the Child Soldiers Protection Act of 2008 for Libya, South Sudan and Yemen, penalties that Congress put in place to prevent U.S. arms sales to countries determined by the State Department to be the worst abusers of child soldiers in their militaries. The president also partially waived sanctions against the Democratic Republic of Congo to allow some military training and arms sales to that country.
Human rights advocates saw the waivers as harmful to the goal of using U.S. influence to urge countries that receive military assistance to move away from using child soldiers and contradictory to the rhetoric Obama used in his speech.
“After such a strong statement against the exploitation of children, it seems bizarre that Obama would give a pass to countries using children in their armed forces and using U.S. tax money to do that,” said Jesse Eaves, the senior policy advisor for child protection at World Vision.
Of course, that’s more of that “smart diplomacy” we heard so much about during the 2008 campaign, and we’ve seen it in practice around the world while we become an international punchline for being softies and push-overs. Somehow, this administration thinks that by continuing to pay these rogue countries for continuing the vile practice, it will change their behavior. Think about how well that has worked out in our recent history. http://thisainthell.us/blog/?p=32223