Friday, February 8, 2013
U.S. and Children in Afghanistan
The observations made during the Obama Administration's first UN treaty body review were released yesterday. The observations painted a dark picture of the treatment of juveniles by the U.S. military in Afghanistan. Hundreds of innocent children have been killed in drone attacks and firefights. Besides the fact that many innocent civilians have died, the main problem is that nobody is being held accountable for these travesties. The U.S. failed to comply with the rules set forth Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the involvement of children in Armed Conflict (OPAC). I believe the worst part about this situation is the fact that these are children being stripped of their human rights. Children don't know how to fight to get their rights back. In Afghanistan, these children don't have anyone to protect them and it was our job to do that, yet we are contributing to this violation of human rights. "The U.S. government’s human rights obligations do not end with the release of a periodic report or the completion of a treaty body review. In order to give meaning to the words of the children’s rights treaty, the U.S. must work diligently to implement the Committee’s recommendations and ensure that our military forces, intelligence agents, and other government officials treat children in the war zones of Afghanistan and elsewhere in accordance with international law." As said in the article, we must save these children rather than just creating reports with numbers otherwise we are not truly protecting their human rights.