28 January, 2015
Boko Haram is not al-Qaeda - The Washington Post
Boko Haram is not al-Qaeda - The Washington Post: It’s critical to note that Boko Haram began as a largely non-violent (though anti-system) Muslim reform movement, targeting local imams and politicians that were unsympathetic to their strict interpretation of sharia law. The movement only became radicalized following the Nigerian government’s 2009 offensive, in which an estimated 700 people, including Boko Haram’s founder Mohammed Yusuf, were killed by members of the Nigerian security sector, while members of the Joint Task Force engaged in egregious human rights abuses and violations of the rule of law. While Abubaker Shekau may include in his sermons international jihadistrhetoric, much of Boko Haram’s ideology and mobilization centers on the specific abuses of the government.