The Executive Director of the United Nations Children's Fund(UNICEF), Anthony Lake, has offered stark realities of the state of the welfare of the world's children. In a recent interview with Reuters, not only was the Director's revelation that 230 million children globally live in areas affected by armed conflicts shocking, but of even more concern and shame to the international community, was Director Lake's attribution of the condition of so many children, to the consequences of political divisions, now greater than before.
He blamed the political rifts among veto-holding members of the UN Security Council of harming children. Mr. Lake described to Reuters writer, Tom Miles, in Geneva, Switzerland, that conflicts were at the worse level in two generations for children and that 2015 looks to be even worse. The condition of so many children, Mr. Lake, a former US National Security Adviser under former President Bill Clinton said: "...reflects the indisputable fact that the world is more divided politically among and within nations than ever before."
Noting that 15 million conflict-zone children live in Syria, Iraq, Central African Republic, South Sudan, Ukraine and the Palestinian territories, Mr. Lake offered that it was of the security interest of nations to stop conflicts such as the Syrian war and to prevent further humanitarian crises.
Both China and Russia have teamed up at the UN Security Council on a number of occasions to block Western Resolutions aimed at ending the Syrian war. That bedded partners China and Russia have stood in the path to peace in the Levant, the UNICEF head asked of such wars: "If these conflicts become endemic in the next generation and the generation after that, then what hope is there for the whole region in the Middle East, and ergo, what hope is there for the kind of stability there that the rest of the world needs for so many reason?"
Mr. Lake highlighted the dangers of so many children cut off from school thus becoming ill-equipped to rebuild their societies someday and the need for so many traumatized children be able to cope with the horrors they have witnessed and continue to see each day. He warned that if the conditions of these millions of children were not ameliorated, "...they are simply going to recreate what they consider to be normal in the next generation and seek revenge rather than reconciliation, and everybody is going to pay the price."
Enough evidence has been witnessed already in respect to increase radicalization of children from conflicts in the Middle East. The ranks of the extremist group ISIL have swollen with radicalized youth from the Middle East as well as from Western nations. Should the Syrian war be prolonged, what would 2015 and beyond hold for global stability and security? What of the children?