- Rep. Duncan Hunter: While Obama prays for Iranian change, U.S. should ready its nukes
- Best company ever? Veteran Beer Co. exists to employ vets, provide quality beer
- Iran official: Sanctions ‘utterly failed’ to stop nuclear program
- ‘Black Santa’ display at IU sparks student outrage
- Joint Chiefs chair Dempsey: Pentagon, VA too slow in merging medical systems
- Sen. Ben Cardin hits Ukraine for crackdown on Kiev protests
- Drone technology turns South, targets feral pigs to kill
- Puerto Rico caravan honoring Paul Walker ends in 6 drunken-driving arrests, 72 speeding tickets
- Better pack a lightsaber: House told space explorers could find alien life in 10 years
- Selfies gone too far? N.Y. woman snaps photo in front of suicidal man on bridge
Somalia’s children schooled in guns
Question of the Day
That might be a common complaint among teachers, but Mr. Abdi’s concerns go further: His students are interested in playing war.
“Students here are not so much interested in learning, because they can see a lot of people carrying guns,” said the 22-year-old English teacher.
“Small guys like them are carrying guns, when they go from [school] to their houses … they pretend to be fighting using sticks like guns.
“That’s what they have in their hearts. Their intention: That they will fight when they grow older,” Mr. Abdi said.
Sikander Khan, the top official for the U.N. children’s agency in Somalia, said there is an increased need to invest more in Somalia’s youth and children in order to give long-term peace a chance to prevail.
“We need to make sure that this generation receives quality basic education, access to social services and protection from violence and abuse,” he said. “This will stop them being sucked into the continuing violence and they will then be able to make a positive and lasting contribution to the future of Somalia.”
“It is estimated that thousands of children have been trained in the use of arms and other skills related to combat. Reports from our partners indicate that in recent months there has been an increase in the recruitment and use of children in armed conflict by warring partners,” Mr. Khan said.
That year a group called the Islamic Courts Union brought some semblance of order when they took control of Somalia and tried to enforce their strict interpretation of Islamic law.
Mohamed said he has seen dead bodies on the street - most recently, when a man was shot because he refused to give a thief his watch.
Mohamed said he doesn’t know how to use a gun but thinks it would be good to learn for self-protection.
Somalia has been in conflict since the 1991, when long-term dictator Siad Barre was overthrown by warlords who then turned on each other.
Mr. Khan said the violence has deprived children of their childhood. Because of the conflict, many are also at risk of disease and malnutrition, among other safety risks, because of the lack of an effective central government.
Somalia has one of the worst child mortality rates in the world. One out of every six children die before their fifth birthday, he said.
By Tom Harris and Madhav Khandekar
Bad science puts rich nations on the hook for trillions in climate liabilities
- Hola: Boehner prepares to push amnesty bill through House
- Kill team: Obama war chiefs widen drone death zones
- U.S. drops 2,000 mice on Guam by parachute to kill snakes
- Doctors say profound new HIV treatment may prove the cure
- Inside China: Nuclear submarines capable of widespread attack on U.S.
- EDITORIAL: Motor City meltdown
- CARSON: Getting to the top by starting at the bottom
- Last call: State Dept. bought $180,000 in liquor before shutdown
- MILLER: Obamas EPA closing smelter will not affect ammunition supply
- Obama: Growing income inequality 'defining challenge' of this generation
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
The Career Doctor Cassi Fields prescribes valuable advice for anyone looking to find a career, nail an interview or earn a promotion.
Headlines from Associated Press and around the Internet
Columns from Voices around the World talking about the events, people, politics and social issues that concern us wherever, and whoever, we are.
This column will cover anything that has anything remotely to do with the game of baseball, from the game itself to mid-summer trades to offseason moves.