Germany's child soldiers

 Tue, 09 Jan 2018 23:28:20 +0100 
#^German military recruits record number of minors | Germany| News and in-depth reporting from Berlin and beyond | DW | 09.01.2018
The German military has been recruiting more and more minors, the Defense Ministry has admitted. Critics have accused the government of hypocrisy over opposition to the use of child soldiers.

However, in a 2014 report on Germany, the UN's Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) noted that, "Some advertising campaigns for the armed forces specifically target children, and representatives of the armed forces are sometimes present within the school context, speaking with pupils and organizing activities." The UN also called on Germany to change that.

Andrew Manning
 Thu, 11 Jan 2018 03:10:35 +0100 
Perhaps my perspective on this is warped because I'm American and it is normal here for high school students to participate in the U.S. Army Junior Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (JROTC) for example. According to the JROTC website, it
is a congressionally mandated program that focuses on the youth-oriented mission “Motivating Young People to be Better Citizens”. It is one of the largest youth programs in the world with more than 310,000 high school students participating annually while enrolled in over 1,700 secondary educational programs and encompasses a myriad of teaching goals focused on leadership, teamwork, character education, personal responsibility, a sense of accomplishment, and service to the nation.

All I remember about the kids that did JROTC is that they practiced a lot of rifle twirling and did a lot of physical exercise. High school students are forming ideas of what they want their careers to be, and militaries offer plenty of solid careers for those interested in leadership and/or technical fields, including opportunities for those who might otherwise have difficulty paying for college or getting in to a good college due to their life circumstances.

If someone is ideologically opposed to the idea of anyone under 18 being involved in any way with the military, I can respect that position. They just need to avoid outrageous comparisons to the horrors of actual children soldiers.
 Fri, 12 Jan 2018 02:01:31 +0100 
Fully understand your point with the inappropriate outrageous comparisons, but should also avoid starting downward spirals with even more worse situations. Yes, the perspectives are quite different and there are many things I can not understand. In my opinion it is wrong what is happening here (and anywhere else) and also UN told so.
Well, I am far from objective about military, but in the last days I had to think a bit about what has changed, or what did not change here in the last years. When I was finished with school there was still compulsory military service and every boy over 17 years had physical examination for military. I am strictly against military service, so I did community service instead. But since 2011 there is a withholding of the compulsory military service and the military needs to compete on the job market to recruit new staff. They have a hard time getting people. Even underage recruits have always been part of German military I think it is a pervert idea. I think even more now, where the military presents itself as an ordinary employer it is wrong to let them recruit minors, because they are not an ordinary employer. Also since the withholding of the compulsory military service there has become a huge imbalance which is not healthy.