You Think I Have Forgotten? Why No International Effort For 200 Plus Kidnapped Young Nigerian Girls?


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Why no international effort for 200 kidnapped girls?

 

From CNNFrida Ghitis

 

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Frida Ghitis is a world affairs columnist for The Miami Herald and World Politics Review. A former CNN producer and correspondent, she is the author of “The End of Revolution: A Changing World in the Age of Live Television.” Follow her on Twitter @FridaGhitis. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author.

 

They are also MY opinions and thoughts daily concerning these 200 plus young Nigerian Girls.

 

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(CNN) — If it had happened anywhere else, this would be the world’s biggest story.

 

More than 230 girls disappeared, captured by members of a brutal terrorist group in the dead of night. Their parents are desperate and anguished, angry that their government is not doing enough. The rest of the world is paying little attention.

 

The tragedy is unfolding in Nigeria, where members of the ultra-radical Islamist group Boko Haram grabbed the girls, most believed to be between 16 and 18, from their dormitories in the middle of the night in mid-April and took them deep into the jungle. A few dozen of the students managed to escape and tell their story. The others have vanished. (Roughly 200 girls remain missing.)

The latest reports from people living in the forest say Boko Haram fighters are sharing the girls, conducting mass marriages, selling them each for $12. One community elder explained the practice as “a medieval kind of slavery.”

While much of the world has been consumed with other stories, notably the missing Malaysian plane, the relatives of the kidnapped girls in the small town of Chibok in northeastern Nigeria have struggled for weeks with no resources to help them. The Nigerian government allayed international concerns when it reported — incorrectly — that it had rescued most of the girls. But the girls were still in captivity. Their parents raised money to arrange private expeditions into the jungle. They found villagers who had seen the hostages with heavily armed men.

 

Relatives are holding street protests to demand more help from the government. With a social media push, including a Twitter#BringBackOurGirls campaign, they are seeking help anywhere they can find it.

Nigerians demand government do more to save abducted girls

It’s hard to imagine a more compelling, dramatic, heartbreaking story. And this is not a one-off event. This tragedy is driven by forces that will grow stronger and deadlier if the captors manage to succeed.

I think of these girls as trapped in the rubble of a collapsed building. Their mothers and fathers try to dig them out with their bare hands, while the men who brought down the building vow to blow up others. Everyone else walks by, with barely a second glance.

Perhaps this story sounds remote. But at its heart it is a version of the same conflict that drives the fighting in other parts of the world. These young girls, eager for an education, are caught in the crossfire of the war between Islamic radicalism and modernity. It’s the Nigerian version of the same dispute that brought 9/11 to the United States; that brought killings to European, Asian and Middle Eastern cities; the same ideological battle that destroyed the lives of millions of people in Afghanistan; that drives many of the fighters in Syria and elsewhere.

In Nigeria, the dispute includes uniquely local factors, but the objectives of Boko Haram sound eerily familiar.

Boko Haram wants to impose its strict interpretation of Sharia — Islamic law. It operates mostly in the northern part of Nigeria, a country divided between a Muslim-majority north and a Christian-majority south. Islamic rule is its larger objective, but its top priority, judging from the group’s name, explains why it has gone after girls going to school.

Boko Haram, in the local Hausa language, means roughly “Western education is sin.”

But women are just the beginning, and Boko Haram goes about its goals not only by kidnapping, but also by slaughtering men and women of all ages and of any religion.

These militants view a modern education as an affront, no matter who receives it. In February, they burst into a student dormitory in the northern state of Yobe, where teenage boys were sleeping after a day of classes. They killed about 30 boys, shooting some, hacking others in their beds, slitting the throats of the ones trying to flee. In July, also in Yobe state, they shot 20 students and their teacher.

The gruesome attacks are not restricted to remote areas. A few weeks ago, a bus bombing in the capital of Abuja killed more than 75 people. Boko Haram took responsibility. It was the deadliest terrorist act in the city’s history.

Boko Haram has killed thousands of people since 2009 and has caused a humanitarian crisis with a “devastating impact,” causing nearly 300,000 to flee their homes, according to Human Rights Watch.

Nigeria is a resource-rich nation whose people live in grinding poverty. It is also plagued with endemic corruption. That triple combination — poverty, corruption and resource-wealth — creates fertile ground for strife and extremism. And the instability in Nigeria sends tremors through a fragile region. Boko Haram keeps hideouts and bases along the border with neighboring countries Cameroon and Chad.

This is an international crisis that requires international help. Is there anything anyone can do? Most definitely.

First, it is urgent that the plight of these girls and their families gain the prominence it so clearly deserves.

Global attention will lead to offers for help, to press for action. Just as the intense focus on the missing Malaysian plane and the lost South Korean ferry prompted other nations to extend a hand, a focus on this ongoing tragedy would have the same effect.

Nigeria’s government, with a decidedly mixed record on its response to Boko Haram, will find it difficult to look away if world leaders offer assistance in finding and rescuing the kidnapped girls from Chibok, and another 25 girls also kidnapped by Boko Haram in the town of Konduga a few weeks earlier.

This is an important story, a wrenching human drama, even if it happened in a part of the world where news coverage is very difficult compared with places such as Malaysia, South Korea or Australia. The plight of the Nigerian girls should remain in our thoughts, at the forefront of news coverage and on the agenda of world leaders.

Thank you CNN & Frida Ghitis.

 

 

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#BringBackOurGirls #BringBackOurDaughters

 

 

#BringBackOurGirls #BringBackOurDaughters: The Global Village.

 

#BringBackOurGirls #BringBackOurDaughters. Chilling Video From Boko Haram Imam, Abubakar Shekau.

 

#BringBackOurGirls: U.S. Vows To Help Nigeria In The Search For Kidnapped Girls. #BringBackOurDaughters.

 

#BringBackOurGirls: Extremist Islam Is Scared Of Little Girls.

 

Petitioning All World Leaders: Bring Back Nigeria’s 200 Missing School Girls #BringBackOurGirls.

 

An Open Letter To Nigerian President  Goodluck Jonathan.

 

#BringBackOurGirsl #BringBackOurDaughters: Updates.

 

New Zealanders support Bring Back Our Girls campaign

 

Out Of Maryland, A Cry For Nigeria: ‘Bring Back Our Girls!’

 

‘Bring back our girls’: Dozens rally in downtown Portland for Nigerian girls kidnapped by Boko Haram

 

Interview: “Bring back our girls,” UN official says

 

Lawmakers Mull Special Forces to Find Kidnapped Nigerian Schoolgirls

 

Associated Press: Nigeria Opens The Door For Talks With Boko Haram.

 

Nigeria Refuses To Swap Militant Prisoners For Kidnapped Girls. New Video. #BringBackOurGirls.

 

Brand New Boko Haram Video Shows Missing Kidnapped Nigerian Girls. #BringBackOurGirls

 

The Bring Back Our Girls Hashtag Campaign.

 

#BringBackOurGirls #BringBackOurDaughters: The Global Village.

 

Report: Nigerian Military Knew Of Kidnapping Threat Hours Beforehand

 

#BringBackOurGirls: U.S. Vows To Help Nigeria In The Search For Kidnapped Girls. #BringBackOurDaughters.

 

 

#BringBackOurGirls: Extremist Islam Is Scared Of Little Girls.

 

Petitioning All World Leaders: Bring Back Nigeria’s 200 Missing School Girls #BringBackOurGirls.

 

#BringBackOurGirls – Part 1

 

#BringBackOurGirls – Part 2

 

#BringBackOurGirls – Part 3

 

 

#BringBackOurGirls Worldwide Protest 

 

Published on May 7, 2014

Images of people the world over weeping and protesting for the return of 276 young girls kidnapped from a Nigerian boarding school. #BringBackOurGirls #BringBackOurDaughters #276

 

 

 

#BringBackOurGirls

 

Published on May 5, 2014

The leader of an Islamic extremist group in Nigeria says his group has started kidnapping women and children as part of its bloody guerrilla campaign against the country’s government, according to a video released Monday. Scores of girls and young women kidnapped from a school in Nigeria are being forced to marry their Islamic extremist abductors, a civic organization reported Wednesday.

 

 

 

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The Bring Back Our Girls Hashtag Campaign.

Published on May 9, 2014
All across the globe a campaign has started using the hashtag ‪#‎BringBackOurGirls‬. Be a part of this magnificent effort to bring the kidnapped Nigerian girls home. Make your own sigh and post it on social media today.

 

 

 

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Song for Peace in Nigeria …. #BringBackOurGirls!

 

“Bring Back Our Girls” …. Nigeria!

 

‘Bring Back Our Girls’ campaign (pictures)

 

NRA comes out against #BringBackOurGirls campaign

 

Brand New Boko Haram Video Shows Missing Kidnapped Nigerian Girls. #BringBackOurGirls

 

#BringBackOurGirls …. can’t let this go!!

 

#BringBackOurGirls …. a Gallery!!! THE NAMES…

 

 

#BringBackOurGirls

 

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23 Responses

  1. Had read Frida’s article when she first published it. It reads just as raw now as it did then, perhaps more so now given that we are at the same juncture as we were a month ago, when our attention was initially drawn to the disappearance of these 200+ schoolgirls- daughters, nieces, sisters, friends to someone. It is unconscionable that the outrage is not international and personal all at once. The lack of urgency is disturbing and suggestive of a more ingrained dismissiveness of the value of the humanity of these girls. That we live in places where education is touted as a basic right, yet do little to counteract when someone stands in the way of our brethren seeking only to access that basic right, is hypocritical at best.

    • As I have said from April 14th until today, had these been blonde haired, blue eyed Norwegian girls….

      • And that’s the downright, despicable truth!

      • Good to see you, hope your summer is going well. Namaste Respect Love. 8-)

      • It is, JB! It’s a good and full one so far. I’m on Chapter 26 and I’m so excited! Looking forward to bringing this puppy to publication. Namaste to you as well.

      • Good luck & congratulations on chapter 26.

      • I want to give some positive rebut to your statement, but I don’t have one that I even believe at this point. I can’t even make myself believe there is something going on to help that we don’t know of…but I do hope we are all wrong. That would be so great and that’s about the best I got. Pretty sorry I know….

        well Peas, of course I hope you don’t really leave, but that’s just my selfishness … I want you to be happy whatever you do. Hope you find a reason to change your mind and stay. (Maybe work with Obama directly, you know he’s never going to stop public service and he will be even more powerful when he’s not holding any Official Office don’t you think? I do! Love ya man <3 but you already know that :) Huggs

      • Barack has had 8 years of bull shit thrown on him and his family, for the next 10 years, at least till his Girls are grown, if I were He, I’d be a father and a husband. Maybe after the Girls are out on their own….then maybe get back into public good works. No past POTUSA has had it as rough as Barack Hussein Obama.

      • True, I agree that is what I am sure I’d do…But something tells me his “fierce urgency of now” he spoke about has not been filled for him…just a feeling…I think he’s waiting for his term to be over to unleash some other things that he has learned and stored for his “after office” life…he may take a year off at most LOL…I think something is still burning inside this man… just a hunch :)

      • Michelle gonna burn upside his head if he don’t sit his ass down and be a husband/father. ;-)

      • Oops oh yeah she would have the last word on that one.. You may be right then…forgot to think about Michelle’s thoughts Roflmao!

      • You know women rule the roost.

      • From your lips to my ears… Peas, just let it be remembered that I never spoke those words (wink) <3

  2. The world searched for the plane that went down in the ocean for over a month even though all aboard, if they were found, were already dead. With those kidnapped girls, there was a short flash of attention and then nothing. What happened to the crew that was sent from the U.S.?

    • I have no answers because nobody is reporting on these girls anymore. On to the next big thing.

  3. Ms. Ghitis wrote the truth, this is not one incident, it is many and none have been talked about, none have been in the news. Not any of the attacks on schools or the killing of school children. It isn’t just the kidnapping, this is horrifying, but it is all of it.

  4. I really can’t believe this has gone on this long and hardly no more news coverage in TV Land ???? This kinda Sick for human beings … What is happening to this country.. IDK

    • They are/were young Black skinned girls Shelley. Now were they caucasian blonde haired blue eyed girls from some Norwegian nation……

      • But there would at least be some groups somewhere making some noise or protesting , or something… I haven’t seen it… maybe all those protest groups are gone…our elders ages …or no hope…it’s always been some groups somewhere keeping such tragic events like this in the news…Well humm.. I hope Pres. got something in his back pocket for those girls. I know his plate is already on overload

    • I am not sure but I am wondering what the hell is going to happen when #44 leaves this office. God I want to feel good about it, BUT… honestly I DON’T … hoping that will change for me in NOV.. I swear I am working hard for Nov.. but it’s a real heavy felling having to think about 2016 will be here in a minute… damn Peas

      • I am not going to live in America after 2016. The day Barack packs up his family and leaves The White Mans House, is the day I leave The United States Of AmeriKKKa and move back home. 2016 will signal the beginning of repeal, abolish and removal of every single thing Barack Hussein Obama has ever achieved in his 8 year term as POTUSA. Politicians and citizens who have been silent for these 8 years will start to voice opposition to his landmark legislation, his programs to help the poor and his signature Health Care Law. It will become open season on all things Barack Hussein Obama. There is no Democratic, Progressive of Liberal Independent person alive who will carry on what Barack has built during his Presidency. Not one human who can follow what this Great Man has accomplished. Some men do great things, but are not great men. Barack Hussein Obama is a great man who did great things.

  5. UN-Real IN 2014 .. Beyond Shame !! Reqlly America – What Is Really Going On????

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