“…the militants, armed with machine guns, rocket-propelled grenades and homemade bombs, put up fierce resistance from positions around local people and their homes” Brigadier General Chris Olukolade
The incident leading up to the massacre at Baga began when Boko Haram militant attacked a Military patrol and killed a Soldier. The Army came backed reinforced and to the glory of President Jonathan and others, a torrent of terror was unleashed on the fishing community.
The Military claim is that Boko Haram militants used heavy machine guns, rocket-propelled grenades and homemade bombs. But of course, they are lying because not a single military man was killed with the machine guns, rocket-propelled grenades and home made bombs. Only fools believed their lies. The militants could not have used the machine guns and bombs on themselves?
The Military also claimed that Boko Haram militants took positions around local people and their homes. If this is true, it is a further attestation of the military ruthlessness, unconventional and uncivilised methods in tackling the Boko Haram Uprising.
If Boko Haram militants took positions “around local people and their homes” then it means that the killing of the locals and the burning of their homes could not have been done by the same militants. The obvious truth is that, like the Nazi and Serbian Army, the Nigeria Military unleashed collective punishment on the whole Baga Community for the killing of a Soldier.
You do not have to have an IQ of over a hundred to know that the military was on a revenge mission when they unleashed terror on the Baga Community. They went there to revenge the killing of their colleague, this has been confirmed by residence to the Red Cross. When the Army came back reinforced, there was no resistants, they came to kill and burn and that was what they did. We all know that this is how the Nigeria Military operates. They account to no one, they kill at will and no one is ever held accountable for their actions.
Over a decade ago in Odi, Bayelsa state, hundreds of civilians including women, children and elderly where killed by military men when they invaded the town apparently on a revenge mission after some of their colleagues where killed. Few years after that, a similar massacre was repeated in Zaki Biam, Benue State.
The people of Baga where held hostage by the Militants and slaughter by those sent to protect them from the militants. The primary duty of the Joint Task Force is to restore security to the troubled areas and protect lives and property. How can they restore peace when they are killing the same people they are supposed to protect and burning their houses?
Today, the Nigeria Army and Secret Service operates secret prisons where people are tortured and kept without trial. Thousands of people are kept in these detention centres across the country and given the most inhuman treatment possible. Apart from being tortured, they go for days without food, the lucky ones that live to tell their stories are those whose families are able to raise hundreds of thousands of Naira to bribe their way out, others die of starvation or are executed point blank. The recent US State Department report made reference to unofficial military prisons, and particularly mentioned one in the Giwa Military Barracks in Maiduguri, Borno State.
The Federal Government (FG) was reported to have turned down a cease fire proposal from the militant group. The only condition the group gave the FG was that the FG should release Women and little Children in Government detention. The government ignored the gesture that could have saved hundreds of lives. It should be noted that the only crime of these women was that their husbands are/were “suspected” to be Boko Haram fighters.
It is very easy to predict the future if the status quo is maintained. Boko Haram may soon be able to match the fire power of the Nigeria Army and should the terror campaign of the Nigeria Army on Muslims continue, Boko Haram will easily recruit fighters from within the Nigerian Muslim community. Then this Boko Haram that is hated and rejected by Muslims in the country will be looked unto for protection against the marauding and lawless Nigerian Army. This seems to be what President Jonathan, General Azubuike Ihejirika and others are tirelesslessly working towards.
As for those who celebrate the “genocide” in Baga or are silence or indifference to it, I will leave you with the words of Martin Niemöller, who said:
“First they came for the communists, and I did not speak out, because I was not a communist. Then they came for the socialists, and I did not speak out, because I was not a socialist. Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out, because I was not a trade unionist; Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out, because I was not a Jew. Then they came for me, and there was no one left to speak out for me.”
Just as I am sure that the sun rose from the east this morning, I am sure that the ripple effect of the Military savagery will sadly envelope us all. There is a common saying that injustice anywhere is injustice everywhere, it is true. Evil is not something that can be contain or confine to a space, so do not feel safe because none of us is.
“Indeed, God Almighty orders justice and good conduct ….. and forbids immorality and bad conduct and oppression. He admonishes you that perhaps you will be reminded. “. Qur’an 16:90
“Let not the hatred of a people swerve you away from justice. Be just, for this is closest to righteousness…” Qur’an 5:8
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