A Nigerian Air Force Mi-24 Hind attack helicopter

A Nigerian Air Force Mi-24D Hind (aka Mi-25) attack helicopter showing a nose-mounted quad-barreled 12.7mm HMG

25 July, 2014

In a determined effort to eliminate terrorism by routing insurgents from their hideouts in parts of the North East and North West once and for all, the Federal Government has placed purchase orders for 40 helicopters for attack and transportation from the United States and Russia, DailyPost can report.

Reliable security sources confided in PRNigeria that some of the helicopters will arrive the country as early as next month, while the remaining will be received certainly before the end of the year to boost the Nigerian Airforce.

Some military and other security forces are currently frustrated about their inability to storm the notorious Sambisa Forest where Boko Haram militants are keeping the abducted Chibok secondary school girls and also serving as operational headquarters of the

The reason, according to PRNIgeria findings is that security operatives are not only aware of the locations of the girls but are also closely monitoring the way that the girls are being moved around, hence they are afraid of the backlash should any harm befall the girls in the course of a forced rescue.

Past cases of attempts to rescue British and Italian nationals in Sokoto and SETRACO workers which boomerang are the reasons that the security forces have been reluctant in storming the forest and rescuing the girls.

“Oh, I wish we could have a consensus of opinion from Nigerians that we should storm the forest and rescue the girls. The day Nigerians decide that enough is enough in one voice, to clear the forest will take less than one week,” a top security source bemoaned.

Already, security forces have succeeded in ridding Zamfara, Kaduna, Jigawa and part of Bauchi states of Fulani cattle rustlers. “These have been completely eliminated”, the source declared.

The officers gave the assurance that although, terrorism like any asymmetric wars have proven to be difficult to combat anywhere in the world, the Nigerian security forces would have found it easier to deal with, had there not been politicisation of the issue.

Nonetheless, it was gathered that Damboa will soon be rescued from terrorists who recently took over the town after killing scores of residents. A special unit of terrorism forces have just been trained
under an international agreement and are ready to be fully deployed to volatile and prone areas of terrorism activities.

“Let me tell you that some communities are peculiar in the war on terror as some of their residents supported Boko Haram in the ambush and attacks on our troops. In the past, they gathered at a square to cheer the insurgents whenever a military personnel was captured and was being murdered.Young ones in the town even play with severed heads of victims.

“That is why we always warn Nigerians to report activities of these devils because giving them support is like dining with the devil or simply riding on the back of the tiger as they now turn against them. That was why some soldiers were reluctant to lay down their lives in some communities where innocent troops who were out to protect them were being misled for ambush. The situation is changing now as community leaders and youths are supporting the military
offensives.” the source declared.

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8 May, 2014

In what promises to be the biggest retooling exercise of the Nigerian Armed Forces since the glorious 1980-83 epoch, President Goodluck Jonathan has approved the release of the princely sum of US$1 billion for the procurement of military hardware in a modernisation and capacity-building drive for the Nigerian Armed Forces.

President Jonathan made this detail known while addressing delegates to the World Economic Summit taking place at Abuja. He indicated that this is an initial effort in direct intervention funding which is inadequate and it portends the release of additional funds going forward.

Gentlemen, we are finally on the same page as our Federal Government after so many years of yelling about the need to have the military retooled.

Before we lose our bearing and knowing fully well that this blog is firmly on the radar of Nigeria’s entire DEFSEC establishment right up to the topmost leadership, how do you think that this boon should be spent? Please note that your views will be assessed and if swayed by the superiority of your argument, the decision makers shall take in board your suggestions.

So given the available sum, how do you think our military can gain the most mileage and put the spring back in its traditionally fighting-fit steps? No rambling or inoperable wishlists please. Just a triservice shopping list which takes care of requirements for asymmetric and conventional warfare alike.

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31 August, 2014

* Consolidates hold on Gamboru Ngala

* Nigerian Air Force say “air support has been outstanding and is set to improve in the face of new acquisitions”

In a latest counter-offensive, the Nigerian security forces have reclaimed Gamboru-Ngala, a strategic township on the border between Nigeria and Cameroon.The Borno State-based town, which has witnessed fierce fighting for the past one week, was cleared of terrorist threat on Thursday.

According to a source, who spoke to THISDAY, the largely rural and sparsely populated community is very strategic because it provides a direct crossing and link between Nigeria and Cameroon.”You know since the crossing of the soldiers to Cameroon while in battle with BH boys, there has been fierce battle to secure Gamboru Ngala and our boys are in charge now,” the source said.

However, THISDAY gathered that the planned counter-offensive by the military in Gwoza is more complicated with soldiers said to be
regrouping, reinforcing and re-strategising to take back the enclave, which Boko Haram has turned into an operational headquarters of their self-declared Islamic Caliphate. It could be recalled that the military had launched a major offensive in several parts of Borno State, which has come under the threat of Boko Haram including Gwoza but details were not divulged for tactical and operational reasons.

But a source ascribed the little progress made in the bid to reclaim the most strategic town of Gwoza to its difficult terrain. The source told THISDAY that having captured Gwoza, the Boko Haram terrorists dug in to consolidate their hold on the mountainous enclave.

“The mistake we made was to have allowed Gwoza to be captured in the first place because the terrain is to the advantage to those in charge of it,” he said. “The terrorists, now with their AAs and other sophisticated weapons, have the advantage of attacking us from the top of the mountains, while also sheltering in the caves.”You know they have been trying for a long time to take over Gwoza, which apart from the terrain, also has link with the Sambisa Forest.

“We are however reinforcing, getting weapons because the one we are currently using is old, outdated and not a match to the modern weaponry being used by BH. We will try and take back Gwoza because we cannot leave it in the hands of BH, even though it’s a tall order.”

This was also confirmed yesterday when a military source stated that even though Gwoza is still firmly in the hands of the terrorists, the army is not relenting to dislodge them from the area. It was also alleged Christians and moderate Muslims have fled the town for fear of being slaughtered and alleging that some of them have actually been killed on Friday.

Speaking to THISDAY, the Director of Defence Information (DDI),Maj-Gen. Chris Olukolade, said that even though the troops have made substantive gain,they will not be speaking on the matter for strategic and operational reasons.”Things are going on, and I can tell you that there are substantive gains but we won’t be speaking much about the operations,” Olukolade said.

Meanwhile, Nigerian Air Force has debunked the claims that they are not providing enough air cover for the ground troops. “I can tell you that Air Force has been outstanding in this operation. With the new procurements, things will improve substantially,” the senior officer said.

It could be recalled that Boko Haram on Sunday released a video
in which it said it had established an Islamic state in the towns and villages it controls in northeastern Nigeria. This has since been dismissed by the Nigerian military, which has then launched a counter-offensive to retake these towns.

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30 August, 2014

* COAS leads troops on air bombardment to reclaim territory

• Insurgents’ rule in captured area clocks one week

There is serious anxiety at the Defence Headquarters,DHQ, following the capture of Gwoza and neighbouring towns in Borno State by the terrorists sect, Boko Haram, a week ago. This is even as the Chief of Army Staff, COAS, Lt. Gen. Kenneth Minimah, is said to be leading troops to reclaim Gwoza and other parts of the state occupied by terrorists.

Leader of the Boko Haram sect, Abubakar Shekau, had on Sunday, in a video declared an Islamist Caliphate Republic in the North East with its headquarters in Gwoza. This followed the inability of the military to overpower the insurgents during the battle of supremacy Gamboru Ngala. During the battle, no fewer than 480 soldiers fled into Cameroun in what the DHQ called “tactical manoeuver.”

Although the troops had since returned to join their units, Saturday Mirror learnt that the DHQ was so worried over the week about the two incidents, which it considered as the biggest embarrassment in the history of the Nigerian military.A source at the DHQ, said that the Chief of Defence Staff, CDS, Air Chief Marshal Alex Badeh, was very disappointed and furious over the developments.

The source further disclosed that this made the COAS to quickly round off his tour of Army formations in the country and proceeded to Borno State on Thursday to handle the situation.

Consequently, Saturday Mirror learnt that serious air bombardment had since commenced with sustained heavy fighting by land troops
with the hope to chase out all fugitives and restore order. The DHQ, having earlier dismissed Shekau’s claim of Islamists Caliphate as “empty”, finally acknowledged within the week that terrorists had taken over Gwoza, vowing also to deploy all its arsenal to reverse the situation in Gwoza.

Speaking with Saturday Mirror in Abuja, over the incidents, the Director of Defence Information,DDI, Maj-Gen. Chris Olukolade, urged Nigerians to have faith in the military assuring that the military had put machinery in place to rid the places of the terrorists and their activities.

“We are not given to telling you our operations and what we are doing to reverse the situation.“Wherever terrorists are in this country, we will drive them out.We will restore order everywhere. Just like the security challenges in any part of the country now, we will restore order everywhere, Gwoza inclusive”, the DDI stated.

Olukolade, who said he was confident that the Nigerian military had what it required to protect the territorial integrity of the country,urged that citizens should support and show confidence in the military as this same military remained the one to prosecute the war for the safety of citizens and the country.

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HMS Iron Duke, a Type 23 frigate of the Royal Navy is seen here flanked by a Shaldag Fast Patrol Craft of the Nigerian Navy

HMS Iron Duke displays big ship attitude by maintaining supreme stability in rough seas. This is one reason why Beegeagle’s Blog continues to maintain that for good seakeeping during counterpiracy operations in deep offshore precincts, Nigeria must provide new and corvettes, OPVs and frigates for the Navy.

Notice how the 38 metre Sea Eagle Mk.II stealth Offshore Patrol Craft pictured immediately behind the HMS Iron Duke rocks to one side even in waters which are no more than 20 nautical miles from the shoreline? How is that patrol craft supposed to carry out pirate interdiction 100 nautical miles out to sea where the waters are infinitely more turbulent?

The smallest vessel in the photo (in the background) is a 32 metre OCEA FPB 98 Mk.II coastal patrol craft, NNS Dorina P101, which was commissioned in March 2014.

Nigerian Navy and Royal Navy crews pose for a group photo on the deck of HMS Iron Duke. In the far right corner is a 17 metre Manta Mk.II ASD Littoral Interceptor.


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Cameroonian troops

27 August, 2014
by Moki Edwin Kindzeka

Cameroon says its military has killed some 30 suspected Boko Haram militants who attacked areas where 480 Nigerian troops had crossed over during a battle with the insurgents. Nigeria said the troops crossed over while making a tactical maneuver.

Cameroon’s state radio reports government troops beat back two attempts by suspected Boko Haram militants to enter the country’s northern territory through a locality that shares a boundary with Nigeria’s Borno state, stronghold of the militant group.

During a confrontation Tuesday, the soldiers killed 11 insurgents while 16 more were killed in an earlier attack on Monday. Cameroonian soldiers seized heavy weapons and destroyed one of the vehicles the militants were using.

The attack took place in areas where Nigerian soldiers had crossed over during a battle with the insurgents. The Nigerian military said the soldiers handed their weapons to Cameroonian authorities in line with standard practice and as an indication that they were not on any offensive against Cameroon.

After the attacks, Cameroon’s state radio announced that the country’s president, Paul Biya, had ordered that the Nigerian soldiers be escorted back to their country. “The head of state has instructed that the columns of Nigerian soldiers who entered Cameroonian territory should be camped in specific locations and supervised by the Cameroonian army.

The Nigerian soldiers have been provided feeding,medical treatment and fuel on instructions of the head of state. At the same time the process of accompanying the Nigerian soldiers back to their country is under way under Cameroonian military escort,” said Biya.

Colonel Didier Badjeck,a Cameroon military spokesman,told VOA that allegations made in Cameroonian media that the incidence was a defection were unfounded, but added that they were particularly careful over the presence of the Nigerian soldiers as Boko Haram militants could also disguise as a regular army and attack them.

He said people should support but allow the Cameroon army to handle the situation and fight Boko Haram as professional soldiers. He adds that they cannot neglect details in a war front and are consequently examining any potential actions of Boko Haram.

Cameroon shares much of Nigeria’s porous northeastern border. Boko Haram militants been blamed for a rise in kidnappings,fighting and criminal acts across the border from Nigeria’s Borno state.

Many surrounding villages where Boko Haram gunmen carry out attacks regularly are becoming increasingly deserted.

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Cameroon Army soldiers in a Landcruiser truck armed with Chinese-made twin 14.5 mm HMGs photographed at Dabanga in the Far North. In the background is a 30mm cannon-armed Type 07A Infantry Fighting Vehicle made by Poly Technologies Inc. (China)

26 August, 2014

Cameroon is redoubling efforts to end violence carried out on its territory by the Nigeria-based Islamist militant group Boko Haram. The move comes after militants reportedly forced Nigerian troops to cross the border into the Central African nation, according to information minister Issa Tchiroma.

Tchiroma said military collaboration between the two neighboring countries remains strong despite Cameroon’s decision to close all of its borders with Nigeria due to the ongoing Ebola outbreak. “Whenever we have information regarding this [Boko Haram] problem, we share information,” said Tchiroma. “Cameroon soldiers have instructions to defend our borders. So they will fight for as long as they are assaulted by Boko Haram to protect our borders.”

About 700 Nigerian troops reportedly crossed into Cameroon following heavy clashes with Boko Haram militants. “Indeed they crossed the border and they wanted us to give them the support they need,” said Tchiroma. “We welcomed them given the fact that we are in close relation with Nigeria, and we facilitated their temporary stay in our country, and they were taken back to their own nation.”Tchiroma says the government in Yaoundé helped the Nigerian soldiers to safely return home.

He said Cameroon closed its border with Nigeria in a bid to protect citizens from Ebola and dismissed suggestions that the military cooperation between the two countries could be derailed due to the closing.“We have decided not to spare any effort in order to contain the aggression and to push [Boko Haram] back to keep them out of our nation,” said Tchiroma.

He said the country is grateful for the pledge of international support to help Cameroon combat the security threat posed by Boko Haram militants.“Many other nations have promised to give us the assistance including The United States, European Union, France, China, [and]United Kingdom, have promised to give us the necessary support in terms of information, and any kind of necessary collaboration,” Tchiroma said.

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LAGOS, Aug. 24 (Xinhua)

Nigerian troops will soon launch a massive military offensive to end insurgency in the northeast region of the West African country, Chief of Army Staff Lt.-Gen. Kenneth Minimah has said.

Minimah disclosed this in the southeast city of Port Harcourt on a two-day visit to army formations and units on Sunday. Minimah said under the leadership of President Goodluck Jonathan, the army had witnessed significant improvement in personnel welfare and institutional capacity to confront the nation’s security challenges.

Nigeria grapples with security challenges, part of which is the insurgency of Boko Haram, which has killed thousands of people, including women and children,since 2009. Nigeria is Africa’s most populous nation and top oil producer, with a mostly Christian south and a predominately Muslim north.

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