U.S. needs to do more for victims of violence in Nigeria

Americans sometimes wonder why Muslim clerics are not more energetic in their criticism of terrorists who claim to be Islamic fundamentalists. In some places, however, a few leaders of the faith do speak out – and pay heavy prices for their religious honesty and courage.

As many as 44 Muslims worshipping at a mosque in Nigeria were massacred by the Boko Haram terrorist group. It appears the attack was in retaliation for a criticism of the group by a cleric at the mosque.

Several other mosques have been attacked for the same reason, according to the Nigerian government.

Few Americans have heard of Boko Haram, or even knew Nigeria is a hotbed of Islamic terrorism. President Barack Obama and his State Department most often refer to the Middle East and eastern Africa in discussing terrorism.

But Boko Haram is a serious threat. Its leader, Abubakar Shekau, claims his group is strong enough to mount attacks on the United States.

Ethnic and religious violence have been occurring in Nigeria for decades. Yet the U.S. has done comparatively little to help victims of terrorism there. Especially in view of the fact some of them are paying the price for insisting their faith should not use violence, that ought to change. Nigeria should get more U.S. aid against Boko Haram.


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