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“It ain’t over till it’s over,” New York Yankee’s famed catcher Yogi Berra once said. Berra may be right about baseball; he was wrong about wars. Wars don’t end when someone wins. They end only when the last generation of victims dies.
That’s what makes the recent UNICEF report on child victims so disturbing. Child victims will live longer than adult victims.
UNICEF’s statistics are staggering.
The deaths are bad enough: 700 children killed by conflicts in Afghanistan; 135 children forced to act as suicide bombers in sub-Saharan West Africa. But – pardon me for even saying this – at least they’re now dead. They won’t carry their experiences with them for the rest of their lives.
Not so the survivors. In Ukraine, 220,000 still play amid landmines and unexploded ordnances. In Yemen, 5,000 children have been injured by war against terrorist factions. In Myanmar, almost half of the 650,000 Rohinga refugees forced from their homes into Bangladesh are children. In the (grossly misnamed) Democratic Republic of Congo, 850,000 children have been driven from their homes.
Categories: Sharp Edges
Tags: rape, UNICEF, Somalia, Yemen, Congo, abuse, PTSD