State Department's Blind Eye to Boko Haram Terrorists
Don't worry. Boko Haram is not really a terrorist organization, says the State Department.
But according to the Adam Nossiter of the NYT (12/25/11), Boko Haram was responsible for a series of Christmas Day church bombings which killed at least 25 people and "rocked Nigeria on Sunday in what appeared to be a coordinated assault by a radical Islamist sect with suspected training links to Al Qaeda[.]"
Writing again in February (2/26/12), Adam Nossiter reported that Boko Haram had killed as many as 300 in northern Nigeria in January in just a few hours of coordinated attacks. He further states that "the group's lethality is undeniable" and that it was "the group's deadliest and most organized assault yet after two years of attacks across northern Nigeria."
But not to worry. According to the Obama State Department, Boko Haram isn't really a terrorist organization. Johnnie Carson, assistant secretary of state for African affairs, testified at subcommittee hearings chaired by Senator Coons, that Boko Haram is not an organized, ideologically driven movement like al-Qaeda and that the violence attributed to Boko Haram is the result of natural social dynamics driven by poverty, social inequality, and police and government brutality and corruption.
Carson dismissed the idea of designating Boko Haram a terrorist organization and claimed that -- despite Boko Haram's repeated statements about its goals of forcing Islam and sharia on Nigeria -- this conflict is driven not by religion, but by "social inequities." In fact, he went on to urge that the U.S. step up development assistance to "Nigeria's restive Muslim-majority north" as it urged the Abuja government to address grievances underlying violence.
"Boko Haram," by the by, means "Western ways are evil."
If the State Department were to designate Boko Haram as a terrorist group, that would trigger a government-wide U.S. effort to isolate the group and cut off its finances. But no, Boko Haram is just a "restive" Muslim group with "grievances" which need to be addressed. Or else what? Or else (hint, hint) they just might morph into a real ideologically driven terrorist organization like al-Qaeda.
The logic is mind-numbing. Basically, it boils down to arguing that X is not really a terrorist group because its terrorist activities have a non-ideological basis, and the U.S. had better appease them, or they might just become a real ideologically driven terrorist organization.
This deep thinking is the foreign policy extension of the liberal domestic meme that so-called criminals are just misunderstood, unfairly treated, marginalized victims of social oppression driven by anger and resentment -- as any normal person would be.
Moreover, the Obama doctrine of buying off the lesser of two evils continually falls for the old Mafia shakedown squeeze-play so often executed by the Muslim Brotherhood. We have to support the Muslim Brotherhood, as they are the only ones who can prevent the really bad guys (Salafists) from coming to power and exacting a much higher toll -- or worse yet, they might morph into a Salafist-like organization. Meanwhile, the Muslim Brotherhood is in cahoots with the Salafists and every other jihadist Muslim group as far as objectives are concerned.
That is the real Obama Doctrine. Buy off the lesser of two evils or the former might morph into the latter -- never mind that the objectives are the same and that they share the same fundamental religious beliefs. Even worse, the lesser of two evils somehow becomes the "nice guys."
Tap-dancing aside, they are all followers of Muhammad, whose objective was world domination. Islam Űber Alles. Can it be simpler than that?