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Thursday, February 23, 2006

Nigeria: The Christians counterattack 

In Nigeria, being one of the roughest places on the planet, even the Christians form into machete-wielding mobs:
Mobs of Christian Nigerian youths armed with machetes and clubs killed dozens of their Muslim neighbours, witnesses said, in reprisal for a massacre inspired by anger at a Danish newspaper.

Rioting broke out in trading town of Onitsha on Tuesday in retaliation for the deaths on Saturday of at least 15 Christians in the northern city of Maiduguri, where Muslims had protested over cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed in the European press.

The violence was unspeakable:
Scattered by the side of the road were the bloodied corpses of at least 19 people, beaten, slashed and in some cases burnt. Caps and Islamic prayer beads associated with the northern Hausa tribe lay scattered around the bodies.

Tony Iweka, a magazine editor who ran the gauntlet of the mob to escape Onitsha and made it to the bridge, told reporters that he had seen 15 more corpses lying in the streets of the city.

"Some of them had been beheaded, others had had their genitals removed. I saw one boy holding a severed head with blood dripping from it," he said.

The narrative so far, then, is that radical Danish Muslim clerics provoked a violent reaction to the now infamous Danish cartoons throughout the Arab Middle East. They did this by inserting three much more inflammatory images into the portfolio of original drawings, and agitating through the region over many months. Once the riots started, various of the regimes in the region, including particularly Syria and Iran, almost literally fanned the flames for their own purposes: Iran to brush back the European countries pressuring Iran over its nuclear program, and Syria to show the United States that the Assad regime is all the stands between order and chaos in that country. Eventually, Nigerian Muslims, who like most Nigerians are not the most plugged-in people in the world, got around to rioting on their own, killing at least 15 Christians on Saturday. Christians in a different part of the country struck back at different Muslims on Tuesday.

In the small chance you were looking for it, there is no evidence that symbols -- the crescent, the cross, the star, national flags or even a tattered copy of the Holy Koran -- are any less capable of motivating attack and counterattack than they ever were.

4 Comments:

By Anonymous davod, at Thu Feb 23, 10:16:00 AM:

I would sugest that the reporting of Christians attacking Muslims is far more graphic than anything written about the Nigerian Muslims killing Christians. Another sign of slanted reporting.  

By Anonymous davod, at Thu Feb 23, 10:20:00 AM:

PS:

Further to my comments regarding bias. the article refers to Christians rioting but Muslims protesting. Both acts were rioting which lead to killings but only Christians riot and commit unspeakable attrocities?  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Thu Feb 23, 03:14:00 PM:

Pure revenge is the motivation. In this world, history and current events have shown that one must be strong. Islam is the most militant religion on the planet, with a leader that has actually led massacres. Jesus was not known for his military prowess, but Muhammed was. The Chinese have learned the lessons taught by the drug dealing British that you must be strong or be conquered.  

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