Terrorism has changed the way of our world rapidly over the past few years. As Americans, we live in fear of another attack on our country, however few and far between they may be.
Around the world, many countries are not as fortunate as we are, and are forced to live in a place where terrorism happens on a daily basis. For a group of girls in Nigeria, terrorism changed the way they would live their lives for years to come…
The terrorist group Boko Haram has presence in the country of Nigeria. Their end goal is to take over the country, and have it run by Islamic extremists. The terrorist group is against western education, which they feel tears people away from the true meaning of Islam.
The country of Nigeria is doing all in their power to prevent the Boko Haram takeover. They have arrested multiple people associated with the terror group. By 2014, thousands of people from Nigeria had been killed in attacks orchestrated by Boko Haram…
State of Emergency
The government of Nigeria was forced to enter the country into a state of emergency. This lead to a serious crackdown and manhunt for members of the Boko Haram. The Nigerian government was able to capture a great number of members, and reduce their presence in the streets of their country.
After the crackdown, members of Boko Haram retreated to mountainous areas. Although this seemed like progress, it did not stop the terror group. They began to target civilians more often than before.
Boko Haram began targeting schools, which became a nightmare for citizens. Over the course of four years, hundreds of students had been killed. Additionally, over 10,000 students have been unable to attend school due to the fear instilled by these terrorist monsters.
On April 14th, 2014, the terrorist group committed one of the worst atrocities that would be known around the globe. Boko Haram broke into a secondary school by pretending to be guards. Initially, their plan was to steal an ‘engine block,’ but things quickly turned another direction…
Boko Haram told all of the girls from the school to come with them. They loaded as many girls as they could into their trucks. The girls that could not fit were forced to walk a long while to a place where other trucks met them and picked them up. As the Boko Haram finished their attack, they lit multiple houses in the area on fire.
Prior to the attack, the school had been closed down due to safety and security dwindling. However, it was finals week, and students from multiple districts were called in to complete their final exams. The series of unfortunate events lead to a tragic ending.
At the time of the attack, over 500 students were registered to take their final exam. Thankfully however, over half did not show up. According to reports form parents, 234 students went missing.
Initially, the number of students kidnapped was over the 234. Approximately 276 students were taken from the school, however, some were bravely able to escape the stronghold of the Boko Haram army. Over 50 students jumped out of the trucks and ran away to safety, saving their lives…
According to multiple reports, the Nigerian army had over 4 hours’ notice of the planned attacked. However, they did not notify the school of what was coming, and did nothing to prevent it. The government claims that they were aware of the attack, however, they did not have enough ground forces to do anything about it.
The girls who were kidnapped were forced to convert to Islam if they were not already Muslim. Many were auctioned off for a small price and were forced into marriage with the members of the terrorist group. Quite a few of the girls were taken to the neighboring countries of Chad and Cameroon.
Again, many tried to escape on their travels. However, the citizens of the countries had a sense of loyalty to the members of Boko Haram. If any of the girls were found to have escaped, they were returned to the terrorist and whipped as punishment.
Over three years after the girls have been kidnapped, people are fighting to bring them home. As part of an exchange deal, dozens of the girls have been released and finally brought home. The Nigerian government was forced to release some of the terrorist group’s leaders that they had captured in the exchange…
Many other girls are still in control by the Boko Haram. However, the girls that were released said many of those who were captive either died in childbirth or were killed by the militants. It is a miracle that so many of the girls have made it home.
This horrific event sparked outrage nationwide. There has been a campaign started that has gone viral on social media outlets such as Facebook and Instagram. The hashtag campaign #BringBackOurGirls has been seen on the accounts of celebrities, and millions of people across the globe.
Michelle Obama recognized the girls by tweeting a picture of herself holding a sign with the #bringbackourgirls. She stated how her and the then president, Barack, see their own children in these girls. Michelle Obama sympathized with the parents of these girls, and said that she could even begin to imagine the pain they feel. The post brought attention to the case nationwide.
Michelle Obama received a great deal of criticism for her post. Muslims across the globe posted images mocking hers. In their image, however, they all held signs stating that it would be impossible to bring back their girls, as her husband, Barack, killed them all in his drone strikes…
In January of 2018, some of the captured girls appeared in a video released by the terrorist group. In the video, they claim their loyalty to their captures, and say that they are not ever going to leave them. It was unclear if the girls were forced to say that, or if their viewpoint on their current living situations changed.
The efforts to rescue the rest of the girls taken by the Boko Haram cannot be stopped. There are still over a hundred girls that need saving, and the Nigerian government claims they are fully on board with partaking in the necessary actions to save them. The United States, as well as other countries, have agreed to send support to the Nigerian government to help save the girls.