From Huffington Post: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/isis-child-soldiers_us_56c779b9e4b0ec6725e28d90
The use of child fighters creates a horrifying dilemma for forces battling the militant group.
The so-called Islamic State group is recruiting children and sending them to die on the battlefields of Syria and Iraq at an “increasing and unprecedented rate,” according to a new study of the group’s propaganda.
The survey from Georgia State University academics analyzed 89 images of children and youth who the extremist group said had been killed while carrying out militant operations between Jan. 1, 2015 and Jan. 31, 2016.
These children were among some 1,500 young people that the militants have enlisted to fight, said Mia Bloom, one of the study authors. She estimated that there are likely thousands more children who are being indoctrinated by the militants and could serve as potential recruits.
“This study is hinting at the fact that the problems are much greater than we ever imagined,” Bloom said of the report, published Friday by CTC Sentinel, the journal of the military academy West Point’s Counter Terrorism Center.
The study finds 21 children died in suicide attacks using explosive-packed vehicles in the first seven months of 2015 — two and a half times the previous estimate. In fact, the rate of child casualties seems to be accelerating. Last January, six children died in suicide operations for the militant group. This January, the toll rose to 11 children, and the number of suicide bombings involving children tripled from a year ago.
Continue reading at: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/isis-child-soldiers_us_56c779b9e4b0ec6725e28d90