10 November 2011
By Lindsay Barrett
Of the many problems facing Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, and they are legion, none is more frightening in its intensity and the potential to destroy
’s fragile nationhood than the rise of home-grown terrorism. Last week’s improbable atrocity in Damaturu, the hitherto peaceful capital of Nigeria , should be a wake-up call. Yobe State
This operation was aimed largely at members of the state security apparatus with deadly effect. Of the scores who died in the mayhem a substantial proportion may have been members of various uniformed services. However even more tragic is the fact that scores of ordinary people are also reported to have been killed or injured in these attacks and some of these were people who had fled Maiduguri hoping to escape such attacks.
The irrationality of this kind of violent outburst cannot be compared in any way to the insurgency that occurred and is still occurring, although on a much reduced scale, in the Niger Delta. There the target is clearly to undermine the economic fortunes of oil companies and their collaborators. Wherever the Niger Delta militants extend their operations to affect communities rather than oil installations they have always tried to reduce the effect on the ordinary people.