I don't know if I'm right asking here or if not then point me were to ask please. So, like in the title, how effective it would be if from early childhood a human child receives military or assassin training? How their psychology and physicality will develop? Will their mind and body be stronger than average soldiers in the military and assassins or weaker?


closed as too broad by Bellerophon, Hohmannfan, Aify, sphennings, kingledion Apr 23 '17 at 17:38

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    $\begingroup$ Hi, as it is this question doesn't quite fit the worldbuilding style of question. This could have several answers looking at different types of training, all equally good and each speculating on how this might effect a child. To make this fit you should narrow down the question, do some research on training styles and then propose a change it would make to a child and ask for a reality check. $\endgroup$ – Lio Elbammalf Apr 23 '17 at 15:30
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    $\begingroup$ Child soldiers in Cambodia and Africa, to pick two recent examples, grow into adults with rather average combat skills. They do not grow into super-soldiers. Many suffer debilitating behavioral health problems from the abuse and trauma they suffered as children. $\endgroup$ – user535733 Apr 23 '17 at 15:32
  • $\begingroup$ With proper training they may, but it is not guarantee the excellent results as because of individual characteristics of onto-genesis and psychological differences. But in general it definitely helps and shaolin monks demonstration are good example of that. But you have to make some selection process and expect that 90% of results will be average. $\endgroup$ – MolbOrg Apr 23 '17 at 15:42
  • $\begingroup$ Many countries, including the U.S.A., have military high schools. $\endgroup$ – AlexP Apr 23 '17 at 16:50
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    $\begingroup$ I am voting to close this question as too broad, because it covers too many areas of training, and requires too many assumptions about the children that could be trained. $\endgroup$ – kingledion Apr 23 '17 at 17:38

In old times military nobility did train from childhood for combat. Similarly it was normal for children to learn the profession of the parent by helping out from early age.

Basically the only effect is that they get the skills needed at an earlier age. This is worthwhile economically for the family as the period the child is an economic drain for the family gets shorter and the period they contribute to the economic security of the family comes sooner. The same logic applies to child soldiers and assassins. You have surplus of children and a shortage of soldiers, so you make child soldiers.

An established child soldier or assassin problem would essentially be a program to get some value from children that otherwise are seen as worthless. Alternately it could be an hereditary occupation with your assassins being required to place their own children into the program. Either way the point would be to reduce the useless childhood period and make the children useful sooner.

Skill level would depend on the quality of training just as it does with adults. Hereditary system would probably be competent, but child soldiers trained because there is a shortage of soldiers would usually get minimal training and mostly learn on the job as there would also be a shortage of good trainers.

Mental and physical effects would depend on the environment and the treatment. Child soldiers in the modern world are generally heavily traumatized as in the modern world child soldiers are used by not very nice people when the situation is extremely bad. Properly institutionalized form could be much like school except more pragmatic and interesting. There is a huge difference in working because the people who killed your family will torture you otherwise or because it helps your family be fed.


This question is rather broad, but perhaps not too broad to answer.

I'm assuming that you are talking about a well-funded program, based on long experience (the temple of the legendary warrior monks) or scientific results (the secret government black ops orphanage). There will be plenty of qualified instructors, both for combat and for other skills which are deemed necessary for the role -- languages, enough general knowledge to blend into the target society, general science and humanities -- but "luxuries" are cut from the syllabus to make room for combat training.

  • Most human aptitudes are a combination of nature and nurture. It is hotly debated just how important nurture is compared to nature, but there is no doubt that it plays some role. So this training will certainly train strength and reflexes.
  • Nutrition plays an important role in human development. Your training program might take care that the child soldiers eat enough veggies, and not so many fries and soft drinks.

I'm pretty certain that on average their body will be stronger than the human average.

  • The child soldiers will get training in combat skills. Where normal teenagers learn to play basketball, they learn close combat.
  • They will probably learn to overcome fear and pain better than average kids.

So they'll certainly be better able to clean and reassemble a rifle in the dark.

  • I believe that such a program will leave their mind twisted and ultimately weakened. All that childhood "playtime" plays an important role in the development of a sane mind. But that judgement depends on your definition of sanity and sound judgement.

I would argue that as a whole, you will not get more effective soldiers by training them from childhood. It doesn't actually take that long to train a soldier - even the most elite units generally only train for a year or two before being considered combat-ready, so there is not a huge advantage in starting training much earlier.

What would be very different is the mindset of such a soldier - they are likely to be highly institutionalised in a way that wouldn't be possible starting with adults. Certainly if you wanted a very loyal army to do things that are perhaps not considered particularly pleasant or acceptable by society. Whether or not you actually need to start full-time training children as soldiers for this though is rather debatable; you could probably get results just as effective by forcing schools to do a certain amount of indoctrination.


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