Showing posts from March, 2010

Forty Years After Biafra - Forgiveness And Beyond

By Max Soillun/234Next Imagine if the Israeli prime minister hired a former PLO fighter as his personal pilot; or if the president of the United States allowed a Russian to be his personal chauffeur at the height of the Cold War. Sounds surreal? Yet that is precisely what happened in Nigeria several decades ago when then head of state General Gowon hired an Igbo air force officer who formerly fought for Biafra as one of his presidential pilots. The end of the brother's war Friday January 15, 2010 marked the 40th anniversary of the end of the Nigerian civil war. *On that day in Dodan Barracks, a brutal 920-day civil war ended as former colleagues and combatants who had engaged each other in bitter warfare for over two and a half years embraced each other with unprecedented warmth. They ended a war wracked by famine, and characterized by starving children, one million corpses, and violence and suffering of such an intensely grotesque magnitude that the words "pogrom"

That UN's genocide mission to Nigeria

Vanguard Editorial ALARMED at the frequent outbreaks of violence in Northern Nigeria, especially the Plateau and Bauchi axes, the United Nations mandated its Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide, Mr Francis Deng, to visit Nigeria and work with the authorities to ensure the prevention of future occurrences of such incidences, especially in Plateau State. Indeed, the incessant, callous killings in Plateau state, could be said to qualify as genocide, since, in the main, people have been targeted for elimination based on their tribal and religious backgrounds or based on the indigene/settler divide. The attacks are carefully planned, and often, professional, murderous militias are retained by one group or the other to ambush and launch attack on their enemies, with the vulnerable – women, children, the old and infirm being the main victims. These mass murders especially in Plateau state have not been much different from the tragedies the world witnessed in Rwanda and Burundi in 19