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Militarisation of Youth in the Czech Republic

Hana Zoor Svačinková, NESEHNUTÍ

As part of the International Week of Action Against the Militarisation of Youth, we conducted this interview with Petra Frühbauerová who works for the NGO NaZemi, focusing on global education. Petra is part of the team preparing a permanent conference of educational associations on the way young people's education in the Czech Republic relates to defense.

Hana Svačinková: What brought you to the subject of militarisation of youth and related issues?


Militarization of children in the Czech Republic

In the Czech Republic soldiers have reportedly started touring elementary schools nationwide in an effort to introduce students to military life. Children from the age of 10 are being familiarized with and encouraged to play with machine guns. These terrifying images bring memories of totalitarian regimes, in which education about war and a militaristic vision of society and life were instilled into children from a young age.

All of this, moreover, is taking place right at a time when the United States has yet again witnessed a mass shooting that took place in a school and the President himself is impotent to act against the powerful arms industry. According to the Gun Violence Archive, in 2015 alone gun-related incidents in the US amounted to 33,293. 8,514 people lost their lives and 17,361 were injured. Among the dead there were 486 children under the age of 11 and 1,687 between 12 and 17. Is this the model we want to follow?

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