The eight-year battle within Nigeria to eradicate the dreaded Boko Haram has resulted in plenty of deaths on both sides and delivered devastating economic impacts to specific areas in the northeast region of Africa’s most populous country. Despite the carnage, both sides show no signs of weakening their resolve.
The Nigerian government’s most recent effort came on August 15, when it deployed 2,000 Special Forces troops to make a dent in the chaos caused by the militant group, whose main goal is to instill highly-restrictive Islamic law. The brutal way in which they’ve made themselves the scourge of both the continent and the world was best represented by their killing of tens of thousands of people.
Boko Haram gained worldwide prominence three years ago when 200 girls were kidnapped from a school in Chibok, which led to a social media campaign to ask for their release, something that was ignored by the group. Despite their Islamic background, one notorious area in which women are equal within the militancy is in their use as suicide bombers.
One problem with the Nigerian’s military way of conducting their fight is that they end up stepping on the toes of allies in their quest to do their job. Just four days prior to their increase in Special Forces, the military raided a United Nations compound in Maiduguri, where humanitarian workers efforts are being conducted.
The lethal financial impact of Boko Haram can be seen by the estimated $9 billion price tag that’s been removed from the Nigerian economy. The area of Borno has been ground zero in the militant’s strategy of housing destruction, with all but 20,000 of the estimated 400,000 homes leveled during this process in that area. In addition, agricultural revenue in the northeast section has reportedly been reduced by $3.5 billion.