Girls in Military: Boko Haram

Since this website is about girls and weapons, I want to write a more serious post right now. I’m writing this at my friend’s shop, 2 Brothers Towing in tears because I’m so enraged over the entire matter.

Boko Haram has been turning the kidnapped girls into weapons. They asked the girls who wanted to be a suicide bomber and the girls responded enthusiastically.

Their captors abuse them by withholding food and sexually abusing them. Stockholm syndrome that drives these teenagers to strap on bombs, a violent example of indoctrination.

Given no choice, these girls are forced to marry men much older than them.

This all began in 2014 when 270 girls were kidnapped from Chibok, Nigeria and forced to become soldiers and wives for Boko Haram, a terrorist group based in the Sambisa Forest.

Social media blew up with the has htag #BringBackOurGirls, yet after 2 years, the girls have not been returned. These children have since been used in bombing attacks, 75% of which are female child bombers.

Fear constantly plagues them. If it’s not their captors they fear, it’s the fact that they are engaged in a relentless string of raids and bombings by the Nigerian military. From rape and torture and hunger, these Chibok girls are living in hell on earth. Some girls have been freed and have escaped into Cameroon. Others are still locked in encampments in the Sambisa.

“These are victims,” says UNICEF’s Cameroon Country Director Felicity Tchibinda. “But they are being viewed in suspicious ways, and we need to change that narrative. There are long-term consequences if we don’t. We’ll lose the trust between communities and victims and the authorities that are supposed to protect them.”

The downside of being rescued from Boko Haram is that many girl’s families are religious. They are ostracized by their communities. From terrorist to outcast. Many officials fear these girls. Perhaps they have compassion toward their captors and their mind is still with Boko Haram. For all they know, the girls may be strapped down with bombs. This sentiment pervades the surrounding communities. One emotion plagues the entire country: fear. Debilitating fear.

“I’m very afraid,” says a girl who had a child, a small son from Boko Haram. “Once the military leaves, the village elder will no longer have a say. That’s when they’ll come and kill us.”

Many girls are still enslaved in the Sambisa Forest, volunteering themselves up to become suicide bombers so that they perhaps have a chance of escaping with their lives.

How do we help these girls escape this sect? How do we fight the injustice? Is there any way to help?