16 Nov

Child Soldiers Prevention Act – Obama Guts It In Its First Year

The McGlynn: He has now hit me where it hurts the most. Where is the out cry from our country? Where from the world? Where from the so called chuches, the pulpits? Are we going insane or just me?

Reference: White House Says Child Soldiers Are O.K., if They Fight Terrorists

Source: Presidential Memorandum–Child Soldiers Prevention Act

The “accompanying memorandum of justification”** had not been released to the public and/or media.

A report from The Associated Press was published on 29 October and picked up by news outlets , and seemingly buried.

WASHINGTON (AP) — In a move criticized by human rights organizations, the Obama administration has decided to exempt Yemen and three other countries that use child soldiers from U.S. penalties under the 2008 Child Soldiers Prevention Act.

In a memorandum to Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, President Barack Obama said he had determined that “it is in the national interest of the United States” to waive application of the law to Chad, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Sudan and Yemen. He instructed Clinton to submit the decision to the Congress with a written justification for the move.

Obama’s memo, released by the White House on Monday, did not include the justification**. Administration officials have said, however, that cutting off military aid to those four countries as required by the law would do more harm than good. And they have said that continuing close cooperation with them can be a more effective way of changing their practices.

State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley said the countries who received the waiver deserve more time to correct their practices.

“In each of these countries we are working with the governments to stop the recruitment of child soldiers or demobilize those who may already be in the ranks,” Crowley said. “These countries have put the right policies in place but are struggling to effectively implement them. These waivers allow the United States to continue to conduct valuable training programs.”

Three days after the Presidential Memorandum, a report was issued via UNICEF on the subject of children as soldiers, making no mention of The President’s waiver.

**The McGlynn: Accompanying Memorandum of Justification

UNICEF: Renewed commitment to ending the recruitment of child soldiers (part 1 of 2)


UNICEF: Renewed commitment to ending recruitment of child soldiers (2/2)

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