Global Independent Analytics

Deadliest Terror in the World: the West’s Latest Gift to Africa

Face of horror

Counterpunch’s Dan Glazebrook assumes: Boko Haram, a terror group in Nigeria which accomplished its power during war on Libya, is now officially the deadliest group of the region.

As it was disclosed, Boko Haram has caused 6,644 deaths in 2014 (which is four times more than in 2013). By comparison, there were 6,073 victims of ISIS in the same period. For instance, last week was marked with 8 people dead in a bus attack in Maiduguri; family of five was murdered in Cameroon; fifteen people killed at a market in Kano, thirty-two at the mosque in Yola.

In 2009, when the group has just formed, they had no capability and no modern weaponry to perform such strikes but the situation changed in 2011 when they acquired desert-ready militant transport and modern weapons. This was a straight result of war on Libya led by NATO: it was disclosed that huge number of various armament and equipment has been smuggled from Libyan stockpiles into the region of Sahel.

Glazebrook summarizes: “rocket-propelled grenades, machine guns with anti-aircraft visors, automatic rifles, ammunition, grenades, explosives (Semtex), and light anti-aircraft artillery (light caliber bi-tubes) mounted on vehicles”, and probably also more advanced weapons such as surface-to-air missiles and MANPADS (man-portable air-defence systems). NATO had effectively turned over the entire armoury of an advanced industrial state to the region’s most sectarian militias: groups such as the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group, Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb and Boko Haram.”

The city of Mali fell as the first prey of NATO’s war on Libya. Gaddafi’s security forces fled Libya after Gaddafi’s defeat and based in Mali. Then they were vanquished by Al Qaeda forces which were armed with Libyan weapons and Mali became a base of Al Qaeda’s branch – Boko Haram. It earned its profit in two ways: by polishing its partisan skills in fights next to trained Islamists in Mali and by gathering arms and equipment from Gaddafi’s defeated forces. Violent Islamists’ attacks, Boko Haram’s boldness and intricate weaponry possessed by extremists catastrophically harmed Nigeria.

Such deadly outcome was foreseen and highly expected: in 2011 African Union Chairman tried to warn NATO about transfer of armament to the extremist groups. It also have been disclosed that Libya’s destruction and Gaddafi’s overthrow very likely would destabilize the region and would have possibly disastrous effect because of the lack of security measures. However, attention was not paid and the West has significantly benefitted from such actions.

Although America has once seen Nigeria as one of the key associates in Africa, lately Nigeria has leaned closer to China. Not only Nigeria received numerous bailouts from China for oil refinement and transportation and railways construction thus making region of Africa competitive and developed at the world market, but also signed a memorandum on Establishment of a Strategic Partnership with China. This cooperation indeed disappointed the U.S. since China has always been America’s opponent in dividing spheres of influence in Africa, so now with all concluded agreements China became a strategic enemy in this region. It even was disclosed that America considered China as one of the main security threats to the U.S. domination.

It is safe to suppose that the U.S. attacks on Nigeria based on the plan to indirectly defeat China through its partners. So far it has been China who suffered most from Boko Haram revolt. Glazebrook cites the Jamestown Foundation: “Unlike most other foreign actors in the country, [the Chinese] are investing in fixed assets, such as refineries and factories, with the intention of developing a long-term economic relationship. Consequently, stability and good governance in Nigeria is advantageous for Beijing because it is the only way to guarantee that Chinese interests are protected”.

The scheme is simple: as long as Nigeria is under threat, and so are Nigeria-China relations, and it definitely serves America well. The U.S.’s efforts to try and block weapon deliveries and funding to Nigeria and pause in crude oil imports speak for themselves. 

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