Recently, the United Nations expressed new concern about a crisis many Americans know little about: the use of child soldiers in global conflicts, especially in Somalia. Somalia, whose government collapsed in 1991, has been in a constant state of conflict and tension for years and still has no legally recognized government. The United States joins Somalia as the only two countries in the world not to ratify the Convention on the Rights of the Child, an international treaty recognizing the human rights of children that UNICEF points out is the most widely and rapidly ratified human rights treaty in history. One of the Convention’s provisions prohibits the use of soldiers younger than age 15 in conflicts. The United States did ratify a later optional protocol prohibiting the use of soldiers younger than 18. But in Somalia, both insurgent groups and the Transitional Federal Government—which is dependent on help from the West, including, especially, the United States—have been widely accused of violating this principle.