Located on the west-central coast of Africa, Nigeria has the largest population in Africa. Its estimated 191 million people are almost evenly divided between Christians and Muslims. Nigeria is the seventh most populous country in the world. With one of the highest birthrates in the world, its population is expected to double by 2050. Oil and agricultural products are the two mainstays of the Nigerian economy.
With a GDP-purchasing power of over $1.1 trillion annually, oil-rich Nigeria also has the largest economy in Africa and ranks twentieth in the world, but an estimated 62 percent of Nigerian families live below the poverty level. The literacy rate for those over age 15 is about 60 percent.
Nigeria was a British colony until 1960, and English is an official language, but there are about 250 West African ethnic groups in Nigeria speaking dozens of languages. The three largest are Hausa, Igbo, and Yoruba. The fast majority of Nigerians belong to the same genetic group as most African-Americans.
According to a December 2012 Pew Report, approximately 49 percent of Nigeria’s population are Muslims and 48 percent are Christians. According a July 2013 CIA World Factbook report 52 percent of Nigerians are Christians and 47 percent Muslims. The Christians are approximately 74 percent Protestant and 25 percent Catholic. Over 18 million Nigerians are members of the Anglican Communion. Only England has a larger Anglican membership. The Nigerian Anglican Church now tends to be more faithful to traditional Anglican doctrine than their English counterparts.
Nigeria experienced a bloody civil war (the Biafran War) from 1967 to 1970 in which over one million people were killed or starved to death. Religion was a factor in this war, the Biafra region in SE Nigeria being largely Christian. Nigeria has also experienced years of political corruption and high crime rates. The unemployment rate was 14.2 percent in 2016.
The terrorist “Islamic State of West Africa” (ISWA), more informally known as Boko Haram, is headquartered in northeastern Nigeria and is also active in the African states of Cameroon, Niger, and Chad. According to Amnesty International Boko Haram had 15,000 members in 2015, and has spawned several other Jihadist groups of several thousand members. The Obama State Department downplayed these numbers. The Nigerian Armed Forces have 162,000 active personnel, but both the Army and police may be heavily infiltrated by Boko Haram and other Islamists. Islam is most common in northern Nigeria, while Christianity is more common in southern Nigeria and some northern Nigerian cities. Some sources estimate that 30,000 Nigerians have been killed by Boko Haram since 1998.
Since 2009, Boko Haram has kidnapped more than 3,000 women and girls. In 2014, Boko Haram kidnapped 276 school girls from Chibok and announced their intention to sell them into slavery—almost inevitably sex slavery. Of the Chibok girls, some 50 have escaped.
Statistics gathered by the Nigerian Christian Association indicate that of the 1,484 Christians killed in Jihadist attacks between December 2014 and July 2015, 34 percent were women, and 30 percent were children. In the process they burned or destroyed 171 churches.
In May of this year, following an attack on a Christian church that killed two pastors and 20 parishioners, the National Christian Elders Forum, a wing of the Christian Association met with the British High Commission in hopes of gaining their support. Their executive summary included these assertions:
“It is clear to the Christian Elders that JIHAD has been launched in Nigeria by the Islamists of northern Nigeria led by the Fulani ethnic group [herdsmen]. This Jihad is based on the Doctrine of Hate taught in Mosques and Islamic Madrasas in northern Nigeria as well as the supremacist ideology of the Fulani. Using both conventional (violent) Jihad, and stealth (civilization) Jihad, the Islamists of northern Nigeria seem determined to turn Nigeria into an Islamic Sultanate and replace Liberal Democracy with Sharia as the National Ideology.
The object, of course, is to supplant the Constitution with Sharia as the source of legislation. The current 1999 Constitution is plagued with dual conflicting ideology of Democracy and Sharia. There are certain values, which are non-negotiable in a pluralistic society, and it seems the advocates of the Caliphate do not respect this. A dual-ideology-driven Nigeria cannot be the Nigeria of our dream. We want a Nigeria, where citizens are treated equally before the law at all levels….bearing in mind that Christians constitute over 50 percent of the Nigerian population, the goal of the Islamists is bound to create serious conflicts, which if not checked, are capable of escalating into another civil war. Already the Islamists are murdering Christians with impunity and destroying vulnerable Christian places of worship and communities at an alarming and inhuman rate”
Well said, Christian Elders of Nigeria! If only the peoples of the West whose nations are already under attack by stealth and civilization Jihad, would hear the justice and common sense of your cry. Let Sweden, Germany, France, the UK, Spain, the U.S. Canada, and others wake up and vote out the appeasers of tyranny before it is too late. There may be only weeks or months until the fate of these nations will be won or lost. Pray for Nigeria and your country as well. We must stop our cowering political correctness and stand strong in the defense of truth, right, our common security and good, and the Faith of our Fathers.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR – Mike Scruggs, Author and Columnist
a.k.a. Leonard M. Scruggs
Mike Scruggs is the author of two books: The Un-Civil War: Shattering the Historical Myths; and Lessons from the Vietnam War: Truths the Media Never Told You, and over 600 articles on military history, national security, intelligent design, genealogical genetics, immigration, current political affairs, Islam, and the Middle East.
He holds a BS degree from the University of Georgia and an MBA from Stanford University. A former USAF intelligence officer and Air Commando, he is a decorated combat veteran of the Vietnam War, and holds the Distinguished Flying Cross, Purple Heart, and Air Medal. He is a retired First Vice President for a major national financial services firm and former Chairman of the Board of a classical Christian school.
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