Alternative rhetoric to ending the North East war
Sir: Two issues arising from the modus operandi of Nigeria’s war in the North East include the following: one, in spite of being hyped as a compact fighting force during fracases in Sierra Leone and Liberia, together with sterling contributions at UN Peace Keeping missions around the world, Nigeria seems to have failed miserably to prosecute its own war.
Two, from the inception of the ‘insurgency’ in the North East (wrongfully so-termed), Nigeria has spent billions of naira, with most of it being frittered away or pilfered allegedly by the Generals prosecuting the war in the North East. Is it that President Muhammadu Buhari, commander in chief of the armed forces is giving the right orders but that his generals are not carrying out his orders? Is it that the Emperor is giving the wrong orders but that his generals are unwilling or unable to carry out those wrong orders?
A 2004 incident involving a terrorist attack in Russia, known today as the Beslan school massacre, involved the abduction of over a thousand people (777 were children according to Wikipedia) and it lasted three days. In spite of entreaties, the terrorists held onto the children and their teachers without food and water while the stalemate lasted. And therefore, Vladimir Putin gave the order for soldiers to storm that school, and take on the terrorists. The incident left 333 people and 186 children dead. The incident established Putin as the undisputed Russian strongman, but it left a permanent scar on the conscience of Russians.
Recent news indicate that Governor El-Rufai of Kaduna State favours the Putin alternative. He was recently quoted to have said that the surest way to bring the war in the North East to an end would be a total and sweeping bombardment of the Sambisa Forest, famous as base for Nigeria’s antagonists.
I believe Nigeria can take specific readings or coefficients – and thereafter send in the specialised jet fighters –the recently acquired Tucano Jets or drones – and thereafter Nigeria would likely experience true ‘containment’ or a ‘degradation’ of the activities of ‘insurgents’. An outright bombardment of Sambisa Forest as a military option against these ‘insurgents’ may be cutting our nostrils to spite our face.
Bob MajiriOghene Etemiku is publisher, WADONOR…cultural voice of Nigeria.