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Boko Haram on the Move in Nigeria

The weekend brought another spate of violent attacks in Nigeria. In the city of Jos, three died outside the Church of Christ headquarters at the hands of a suicide car bomber, which Boko Haram later claimed as their own.

Located on the border between the Muslim north and Christian south, Jos has long been a flashpoint throughout Nigeria’s long history of religious and ethnic tensions. Boko Haram is a radical sect even within this volatile context, and its expansion southward into central Nigeria is a sign that it is growing in capability. If nothing is done to prevent these small-scale yet frequent attacks, religious conflict could easily explode again as it did in 2010, when violence claimed 1,000 people.

The government is doing little to defuse the threat. Local Nigerian news agencies, including Vanguard and the Nigerian Tribune, continue to decry Boko Haram and the apparent nonchalance of the regional and federal governments. Unfortunately, President Goodluck Jonathan appears unlikely to take real action to combat Boko Haram’s expansion south—until it somehow becomes politically useful to do so

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  • Anthony

    “The Nigerian Fundamentalists of boko haram may well exist, but it is by no means clear, even to the Nigerian authorities, that all the attacks on Christian Churches or police stations or prominent leaders are the work of Fundamentalists (meaning Islamists). It could be the work of gangsters cashing in on disorder, or weak law enforcement….” (Roger Kaplan, American Spectator).

    Point being: perhaps nothing is as it seems.

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