Boko Haram and the return of the Nigerian slave trade

Anthropologists and embedded journalists occasionally get access to the oral traditions handed down from father to son about the ‘good old days’in non Western cultures. In the case of Northern Nigeria it is clear that the good old days were the precolonial days of Jihad and slavery. Terrorists such as Shekau did not emerge “out of nowhere.” He and his growing number of accomplices are a throwback to a time when he and his group and its ethnic allies were the dominant power in the region; the ‘tough’ ones, the slave traders, the ones who lived off other people’s labour in the name of Jihad and Islam.

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