Niger, Chad come to Nigeria’s aid against Boko Haram
By: Roger Hoke – News Editor
The governments of Chad and Niger have formed an offensive against the Nigerian terrorist group Boko Haram.
The BBC reported Sunday that the two countries will deploy ground troops and airstrikes in northeastern Nigeria, the same place innocent civilians were attacked by Boko Haram earlier this year.
This push of military aid to Nigeria has came after Boko Haram pledged allegiance to ISIS last week, CNN reported on Sunday. The unity of these two powerful terrorist groups was enough to drive Nigeria’s allies and neighbors to action.
Another call for an offensive from Chad and Niger is the increasing violence of Boko Haram outside of Nigeria, especially in Chad and Cameroon.
Aljazeera reported on Monday that Chad and Niger’s forces had already successfully taken two towns from Boko Haram’s hold.
The Chadian forces claim that about 200 rebels were killed in the battle to take back Malam Fatouri and Damasak in the northeastern part of Nigeria.
The two towns had been held by Boko Haram since November and were important wins for the terrorist group as they both sit on the border of Chad and Nigeria.
Fighting off the rebels led to 30 hospitalizations. Around 10,000 men have been deployed to fight in this offensive.
This is the first time forces from Niger have fought off the terrorists in an outside their own borders. Chadian forces have already successfully taken down Boko Haram territory in the country of Cameroon.
Recently, American special forces came to Chad to share their knowledge with Chadian forces more about fighting terrorists, BBC news reported.
The training has been taking place in the western part of Chad, in a remote part of the southern Sahara Desert.
U.S. forces have been aiding the Chadian military with knowlege on how to use automatic weapons, the likes of which the African nation has never seen.
“Our biggest challenge is intelligence to allow us to fight,” Gen. Zakaria Ngobongue said to BBC News. “Our means may be limited – we have to make due with our weaknesses – but if our Western partners are supporting us and accompying us, I am sure that we will put an end to Boko Haram.”
The U.S. military has said they would rather stay behind the scenes by helping out the Chadian and Nigerian armies, rather than take part in airstrikes of their own.
Some U.S. officials feel the unity of ISIS and Boko Haram will result in the terrorist super power the two are aiming to become.
The CIA has analyzed the situation and feel that ISIS’ values conflict with Boko Haram’s.
According to the CIA, ISIS and its members have shown racist tendencies against blacks, which will not work will with a group like Boko Haram. Boko Haram is believed to be of almost 100 percent black-African membership.