Terrorism: King Abdullah Was Sending A Message To Nigeria Too By Sam Nda-Isaiah
Terrorist group ISIS is causing panic around the world. ISIS, which is the acronym for the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, is probably the first terror group to have territorial expansionist ambition, and it is so far succeeding in actualising it. It has taken over critical parts of Syria and Iraq already and heavy fighting is currently going on for the control of strategic facilities in these countries. This group is so ruthless, beastly and heartless that even al-Qaeda has declared that it does not want to have anything to do with it. They kill for the fun of it and actually enjoy doing so. They have wiped out small towns and villages and they are already causing disruptions in the geography of the Arab world. They hate everybody and everybody hates them; they are very happy about that, apparently.
Two days ago, King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia, apparently speaking about ISIS without exactly mentioning it by name, said, “If neglected, I am certain that, after a month, they will reach Europe, and after another month, America.” Continuing, the Saudi king said, “These terrorists do not know the name of humanity and you have witnessed them severing heads and giving them to children to walk with in the street.” The king made this statement at a reception for foreign ambassadors on Friday. On that same day, the United Kingdom raised its terror threat level from “substantial” to “severe”. Most of Europe is already doing same and President Obama has found himself in the awkward position of having to bomb ISIS positions in Syria in a military operation that directly props up Bashar Assad of Syria.
While all this is happening, our own President Jonathan does not even appear to be making an attempt to interpret what is going on. He is mainly interested in using our military, police and SSS to crack down on opposition politicians and opposition states instead of looking at the bigger and more worrisome picture. You do not need to be intelligent to know that whenever ISIS, which the international community now simply calls the Islamic state, wants a foothold in Africa, it would not need to think twice before choosing Nigeria, as all it would need to do is establish a link with Boko Haram, that is, if it had not done so already. And even if it has not done so yet, Boko Haram is already sending it a message by its declaration recently that it had established an Islamic caliphate in Gwoza.
And even though the Nigerian military are strenuously trying to debunk this declaration, Boko Haram has actually taken over more territories since hoisting its flag in Gwoza last week. Boko Haram’s declaration of the establishment of an Islamic caliphate within the Federal Republic of Nigeria is a clear “invitation to treat” to ISIS.
Things are even getting worse for Nigeria. For the first time since the nation came into being, our troops fled during a battle into another country. About 480 of them fled from Boko Haram into Cameroun. This must be one of the saddest and most embarrassing moments of our lives. Is this the same Nigeria that liberated Liberia, Sierra Leone, Chad and many of the southern African countries? See what extreme corruption can do to a country?
King Abdullah was not only passing a message to Europe and the United States – which by the way are responding accordingly – he was also directly sending a clear message to Nigeria which did not know he was doing so.
President Jonathan must get serious about maintaining the territorial integrity of Nigeria. If soldiers’ wives had protested that their husbands would not fight Boko Haram if they were not properly armed, why shouldn’t the president investigate this instead of the military threatening the wives? It was after that that the soldiers (the husbands) fled into Cameroun. President Jonathan should be very worried about the kind of Nigeria he will be leaving behind. Somebody has to investigate immediately why funds budgeted for the security agencies do not get to them. Who is stealing the money and why hasn’t anyone been brought to book?
The entire world is in danger of the expansionist activities of the extremists King Abdullah spoke about. That is why nations around the world need very competent, knowledgeable and strong leadership at this time. Nigeria appears to be sleepwalking into a catastrophe.
Commendation For Jonathan’s Government
President Jonathan’s government must be commended for the seriousness with which it has handled the Ebola incursion into Nigeria, even though many have said that the greater commendation should actually go to Governor Babatunde Fashola of Lagos. It is true that Fashola is the star in this matter because, if the virus had not entered the country through Lagos which is very well run, and had come in through less well-run states, the story would have been disastrously different today. Even the international community appears to be pleasantly surprised about Nigeria this time.
Even though the minister of health was hasty in declaring “mission accomplished” last week, I still think, warts and all, President Jonathan has done well on this one.
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