Opinion » Columnists

Now children??

UNICEF describes the reports it has received as "alarming" and states that any mistreatment of children is a violation of international law.
This must be the understatement of the moment. A violation of international law is also an illegal invasion of a country, the slaughtering of tens of thousands of its civilians, the maiming or mutilation of tens of thousands more, the wanton destruction of its civilian infrastructures, the destruction of its water and electricity supplies, the destruction of its vaccine stocks, rendering children helpless to disease, the dropping of
explosives in civilian areas.

The allegations include sexual abuse of children in detention centres, although until they have been substantiated by independent sources, they are no more than allegations at present.

What has been substantiated is the callous disregard for human life by the armed forces and regime of the United States of America. In Baghdad alone, there are no less than 800 dangerous sites where unexploded ammunition is left lying around, more than one year after the conflict was supposed to have ended, according to UNICEF. Most of this ammunition is unexploded fragments of cluster bombs, purposefully deployed into civilian areas.

"Children are injured or killed on a daily basis when touching or playing with UXOs (unexploded ordnance)" according to the Fund. This contradicts the Geneva Convention, which stipulates clearly that a battle area must be rendered safe for civilians after hostilities have ceased.

What to expect from a regime which callously targets civilian
infrastructures so as to be able to increase the value of the contracts handed out to those who supported George Bush four years ago, as a reward and a bribe to support him again?

As to whether the American people are that blind or that stupid, November will tell.

 

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