(Al Jazeera) – South Sudan has been engaged in a civil war for 18 months now, with both sides using children to help fight their battles. As bad as it is for the world’s newest country to descend into civil war, it’s even worse to fight that war with children. In recent months, I’ve interviewed about 20 boys who have escaped from Matthew “Pul” Pulyang, a government commander and strongman who has been forcing boys to join his forces. His fighters have raided villages, threatened, beaten, and taken boys as young as 13 to Pul’s training camp and forced them into battle.