Monday, December 10, 2007

Smells like teen spirit: Places not so cool to grow up

Never mind the lists of travel to the world’s dangerous places, here’s a record of the five worst countries to be a kid. (Please don’t tell these list makers that kids, unlike tourists, have little choice of where they live.)

Anyway, the list according to Foreign Policy, ranks the countries on those places where you don’t want to raise your children.

With Iraq pulling down the top spot, Zimbabwe grabs a little second-place thunder.

One in eight kids from Zimbabwe will die before reaching the age of 5 is the reason for the #2 ranking.

The cause? Pick em: AIDS and poverty and Robert Mugabe’s economic policies and the small fact that health care costs have increased 3,000 percent in “recent years” – whatever that means. Oh, one-in-five children is an AIDS orphan.

Speaking of headline grabbers, the Democratic Republic of Congo (that’s former Zaire) pulls in the number three spot due to Child Soldiers. Well, 30,000 child soldiers to be exact, and half of them are girls, the magazines says, forced into sexual slavery. Another 20,000 children live on the streets of Kinshasa, where they suffer malnutrition, physical and sexual abuse.

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