A Long Way Gone Essay

1167 WordsJan 17, 20145 Pages
Katressia Brathwaite English Nov 28th, 2011 Mr. Baty How do children become soldiers Many questions have been asked repeatedly about how do children become "child soldiers". In certain parts of the world, there are many various ways used to transform innocent children in to "child soldiers". Many of them are recruited by force, but others join voluntarily because they see no other alternative than to join or because they see it as a "meal ticket" and being recognized for doing something for their country. In the novel A long way gone, written by Ishmael Beah, Forced recruitment and mainly Brainwashing is used to create these "child soldiers", which the author Ismael Beah experienced himself and suffered the numerous repercussions afterward. Four methods used to transform these children are the use of brainwashing, drugs, forced recruitment and physical abuse. One method Armies used to mold children's mind into sadistic "child soldiers" was by the use of brainwashing. Brainwashing is the process by which a person is put through a prolonged process in order to change their thoughts pattern and behavior. One common result of this is to make them forget about their conscience and just focus on killing. According to "Child Soldiers" an article written by Mike Wessells," "Weakened psychologically and fearful of their commanders, children can become obedient killers, willing to take on the most dangerous and horrifying assignments"(2). This quote declares that children are easily manipulated into becoming horrendous assassins even if their minds are not completely with the idea of committing murder. Similarly, Ishmael Beah, in his memoir of a boy soldier, notes how he became a completely different person. In the novel he stated, "Over and over in our training he would say that same sentence: Visualize the enemy, the rebels who killed your parents, your

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