Nigerian Special Forces commandos undertake confidence-building foot patrols in the far northeast district of Baga

6 May, 2014
Lagos, Nigeria

The Nigerian military has deployed two battalions of troops and 1,000 special forces soldiers to northern Borno State to search for and rescue the over 200 girls who were abducted from their school in Chibok three weeks ago.

The Senior Special Adviser to the President on Public Affairs, Dr. Doyin Okupe, disclosed the efforts in a television interview monitored by PANA here Tuesday.

He said the military had flown 250 sorties over the Sambisa Forest, the stronghold of the violent sect Boko Haram which has claimed responsibility for the abduction, in search of the girls using special scanning facilities. ”Definitely the government and the security agencies are in hot pursuit of the terrorists,” Dr. Okupe said.

He denied allegations that the federal government did not show enough concern about the abduction, because the President did not make a public comment on the tragedy for over two weeks. ”The President and the government are not taking this as the rest of the world thinks…..But we are not Americans. We are not showing off,” the Special Adviser said, adding that the President has just presided over a three-hour emergency national security meeting in the capital city of Abuja.

He also confirmed that President Jonathan has been informed on the fresh abduction of eight girls also in Borno, saying certain actions have been ordered in that regard. PANA reports that the US has offered to assist Nigeria to rescue the girls, an offer the Nigerian President has accepted.

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BEEG EAGLE -perspectives of an opinionated Nigerian male with a keen interest in Geopolitics, Defence and Strategic Studies
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  1. to4shizzle says:

    Just this Night or early morning as I was Returnin from Work I saw Clear as Day our Charlies Revvin dia Engines and I saw them Flyin away and now I saw this Update….I missed da Deployment of our Troops by dis Inch….Good Work Gen Beeg let our Soldiers Bring dose Girls Back Safe.
    Sent from my BlackBerry® smartphone from Etisalat. Enjoy high speed mobile broadband on any of our Easyblaze plans. Visit for details.

  2. asorockweb says:


    This is the first time I have heard them mention of number of sorties flown.

    I guess nobody ever thought we wanted to know before.

    Or maybe it’s aimed at the western press.

    I remember in Gulf War I, that Allied Forces flow more than 1000 sorties a day.

    I hope the Chibok girls’ kidnapping incident will bring clarity to our political and military leadership about the capability gaps in our military.

    Flying 250 sortied over a few days, with just a handful of surveillance assets is commendable, well done NAF.

  3. asorockweb says:

    Godspeed. Go bring our girls home!

  4. jimmy says:

    I have deliberately kept quiet while the cyber battles raged between OUR OGAS henry, asorock, doziex ( truth is bitter, but sometimes either you make lemonade out of lemons or sour water), oga peccavi ( bloodless), oga solorex, are james ( conscience is in the right place) igbi, and ozed i deliberately left one person off who belongs on NAIRALAND ( not it is not you igbi), not because i had nothing to say but because it just to me seems what we have been saying seems to fall on deaf ears.
    This chibok incident as embarrassing and disgraceful as it has been is going to turn out to be the best thing to happen , we on this blog saw this coming a long time ago we decried the lack of real time intelligence that can be acted upon with AIRLIFT HELIOS CARRYING TROOPS, HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO BUY THIRTEEN HELIOS FROM RUSSIA?
    We asked, begged , demanded that beegeagle be embedded with the troops in the ne to no avail, too dangerous, it costs x amount of naira, now chibok a town that very few people in Nigeria knew a month ago has been mentioned on twitter 1.7 million times , American journalists are flying in an out of the NE with or without escort.
    I spoke passionately about the role of the media and that the army needs to understand this is a different kind of war it fell on deaf ears, Today it was unprecedented on the 6:30 news ABC AND CBS led with their lead ( 1st story about boko haram and chibok). I saw BRIG Chris Kolade having to address grieving mothers this is what it is going to come to.
    By Saturday the Americans will be coming in with their anti- terrorism experts and their embedded press ( with Twitter and Facebook) by Sunday the Brits will be their too by Monday Paul Biya will be prostrate in front of GEJ offering all kinds of goodies while the French have their leather boot firmly on his wretched neck.
    Those who have not prepared for success have prepared for failure.
    The way forward has to be methodical MINUS THE EMOTION , on a grid system asking the Americans and Brits especially ( the unmentioned assets that are classified for real help that means swallowing our stupid nonsensical pride and getting to the exact point where these girls wherever they are, are rescued. let them get the glory we need the bulk of these girls this is one of the most dangerous missions of this war.
    We need to fly more sorties TO GET humit and penetrate deep into the sambisa forests from three different sides ( not four). .The SCALE OF sambisa forests is not really known however on CBS news IT WAS DISCLOSED THAT IT IS 6X THE SIZE OF ONE OF AMERICA’S BIGGEST PARKS YELLOWSTONE . therefore you need AIRCRAFT and HELIOS TO BE EXACT , YOU NEED TROOPS AND WHEN THESE TROOPS CALL FOR BACK UP BACK UP MUST GET THERE IN LESS THAN 30 MINS. backup consists of pinpoint arty strikes if we don’t have it ask the Brits nicely they will supply it trust me bbc has become our latest best friend this is what happens ( m.o.d.) when you treat your own ( beegs) like yesterday’s newspaper.
    shekau enjoy it while it lasts ..

  5. Eeben says:

    How very, very sad. My heart bleeds for these poor girls and their families. My heart also bleeds for Nigeria.
    I know that eventually you will triumph but until then, the road will be steep and filled with tears.

  6. Augustine says:

    @Eeben, what could South Africa do to help Nigeria as an African brother in times like this?

    • Eeben says:

      Forgive me but I cannot answer your question objectively, Augustine.
      We are witnessing the clash of international foreign interests with the national and vital interests of Nigeria. Believe me when I saw we have witnessed it before in Africa yet for some reason, our continent refuses to listen. So, in many ways, we are to blame for the predicament we find ourselves in.
      As you are aware, South Africa has focused a lot of her energy towards the SADC countries and has ventured into central Africa as well. But, lest you think our government has no interest in what is happening in Nigeria, it too has numerous problems on her doorstep that need to be taken cognisance of. We too are under assault but on a different level.
      Do not think for one moment that foreign powers are here because they love us, regardless of colour, race, creed or religion. They are here to see what they can get and how a situation can be exploited. Again, I speak from a position of witness.
      We need to go back and reassess our strategies – especially national security strategies, restructure our armed forces and train for action, not reaction. Why are we continuously reactive? Why does the enemy always have the initiative? Why do we think that foreign powers will rush to our aid? They really couldn’t care less unless it impacts on their economic interests.
      My company has worked in several of our countries and we witness this dilemma time and again.
      I do not want to “market” STTEP but please show me which international power or their PMCs has had success in Africa? Surely, if you wish to train a champion boxer, you get someone who has a record of winning – and not of losing.
      My government has its hands full – and at times tied. At best, it can give heartfelt sympathy. Your country will need to look beyond our government for help.

      • peccavi says:

        Unfortunately Nigerians are great believers in miracles and help coming from ‘beyond the sky’.
        There was a 12 hour firefight in Gamboru Ngala on Monday, 14 policemen fought for 12 hours with no help or relief.
        How is that possible? Not a single unit heard their calls for help?
        We are acting like kids in a candy shop because a few billions have been released coincidentally before an election. Jubilating because foreign forces are operating on our territory doing a job we should have done ourselves.
        There is no way I see this current scenarios playing out in our favour yet critical questions are not being asked, there are no checks, no balances no voices of reason.

    • Akin Oges says:

      Thank you Oga camouflage1984 for the footage. Five banana clips bound together betrays the intensity of the battle those troops had to fight through. Good to see the zig zag trenches, however, they need to be deeper. Moral seems to be good as well. Lastly, NA let Beegeagle tell your story; there’s no other more patriotic and NA loving medium as the Beegeagle.

  7. joe says:

    IN better/other news, the igirigi is being deployed by the police
    yahoo video, at the 1:09 mark, the igirigi along with one police pickup and an army pickup .


    I don’t think its the Igirigi except it has been greatly modified. Here I s a closer view of the vehicle deployed by the army. Nobody really knows if it is the Igirigi or another Proforce APC.

  9. kenee2k says:

    Good media show, it would have been a lot better if they destroyed or captured pick up trucks were displayed as well as captured insurgents.

    This was a show for the cameras, I noticed bullet holes in those soft skinned pick ups I pray no one was killed, in this day and age should we be sending our soldiers into theatre with soft skinned pick ups. Please we should value our soldiers more.

    It’s sad but we certainly have the money to equip our soldiers far better than what we have done and are doing. This monumental shame we are going through has one advantage we may now be forced to actually increase the operational capacity of our armed forces.

  10. rka says:

    “He denied allegations that the federal government did not show enough concern about the abduction, because the President did not make a public comment on the tragedy for over two weeks. ”The President and the government are not taking this as the rest of the world thinks…..But we are not Americans. We are not showing off,”

    Dr Okupe, herein lies the problem. We should be showing off what we are doing to prevent all this negativity.

    As I watch BBC news, all I hear is how the Nigerian Government has done nothing since the kidnapping of the girls and that only when foreign help has been provided is there any movement.

    Please I beg, show off.

  11. peccavi says:

    Please abeg this is not a job for spin doctors.
    Can we get proper briefings
    If they flew 250 sorties whats the outcome? How come the most basic of basics, interrogating escapees and local people didn’t take place?
    We have waited until Angelina Joile started writing on Twitter before we decided that we should talk or show effort? And to a foreign broadcaster because the Nigerian people are not important.
    Abeg they should just pay the ransom and then set a side a few more billions for the next set of kidnappings

    • Are James says:

      The story about the 12 hour firefight by a police contingent without reinforcements is depressing. This is why the clever ones just melt away. Something terrible has happened to the NAF element in this war. aircraft availability problems?, pilots on training? or just plain lack of jet fuel?.

  12. Colonel says:

    The NA has lost credibility among Nigerians because of its refusal to tell its story. I am not suprised that the international community is bashing us left and right. This issue of units in the line of fire calling for reinforcements without getting any is getting out of hand. I know we have good communications systems but why are the units not responding to distress calls? I think its high time battle commanders monitor their men effectively to see their response to situations on the battle field.

    • Eeben says:

      Colonel, I again say that we should go back and look at the military strategy as a component of the National Security Strategy. I have also been taken to task to imply that intelligence is not up to scratch – but it is a vital component of your NSS and in particular on the military strategy and subsequent operational designs with the AO. Good intelligence allows analysts to formulate predictive intelligence thus aiding in pro-action as opposed to reaction.
      The NA can only act on what it knows as opposed to trying to do something in the dark. However, I disagree that the NA has lost credibility. You have good leaders and soldiers but it is not their role to inform the populace of the situation as it unfolds. That falls within the scope of a government’s communications operations with the populace.
      As for a non-response to the calls for support: I can only surmise that some principles were not in place ie “mutual support”, “rapid response” and so forth.
      Currently though, I admit that sitting and watching from afar, it appears as though BH has the initiative and that needs to be reclaimed by the NA. As it stands, BH will continue with its actions and the NA will continue to be reactive.

    • Eeben says:

      Please see
      Do not view this as anti-Nigerian rhetoric published in South Africa but it does give an idea of the concerns that are arising re the NA. Indeed, a lot of international reporting follows the same lines. The damage to your country is, on the whole, incalculable.
      It is precisely this type of report that also does the NA more harm than good – and boosts BH in the process. It is unfair on the NA who work at giving their best under difficult conditions.
      Let’s rather put our heads together and see how we can support the boys in the field.

      • rka says:

        Thank you for your show of support and genuine concern Eeben, it is very much appreciated. I believe the NA will come out the other side re-equipped and reinvigorated and will just have to ride the negative storm at the moment and continue doing what they have been trained to do.

        With the right equipment and being intelligence led, coupled with on-going CT/COIN training, there is light at the end of the tunnel.

  13. Augustine says:

    Deploy drones, deploy US Marines, deploy Royal air force SAS, deploy Nigeria Navy SBS and a whole mechanized infantry division, until we have a permanent garrison in every town and village 150 km inwards from Nigerian border with all our weaker neighbours, Boko Haram will continue to have a field day killing and kidnapping Nigerians every week until kingdom come.

    12 soldiers and 24 mobile policemen with 2 armoured Toyota 4×4 technicals, 1 Infantry Fighting Vehicle with 30mm cannon, and 1 Armoured Personnel Carrier, then soldiers with night vision equipment, hand launched glider drones, portable radar, night/day high powered binoculars, 12.7mm and 14.5mm heavy machine guns, Y-3 Denel automatic multiple grenade launcher, rifle attached single shot grenade launchers, and lots of extra ammunition, smoke for screens, flares for illumination, satellite mobile phones for calling reinforcement…

    Boko Haram will die like houseflies and stop open attacks, next they will switch over to suicide bombing.

    I don’t see any other way to win this war than the garrison strategy.

    If any army field marshal on this planet has a better battle plan in mind, let him tell us please.

    • Eeben says:

      I sense your deep frustration and anger at the situation Augustine. However, that would merely bring about a hollow victory and truly that type of victory is of no value to Nigeria. Besides, do you want Nigeria to look like Iraq or Afghanistan? Look what has happened there.
      A garrison approach and mindset will denude the NA of any semblance on initiative. That will play directly into the hands of BH.
      The answer to the problem lies within the Nigerian people itself. Do not sell your armed forces short. The answer is plain to see – look closely and you will see it.

  14. freeegulf says:

    oga augustine, these are terrorists and insurgents, this is their tactics. they try to get under everyone’s skin. if they cant hit the army directly, they try to frustrate them by terrorizing innocents civilians.
    ask the Algerians, they had a bitter phase in the 90s. its a shame that our military is not as serious as their Algerian counterpart. we need to go past this containment phase and go for the jugular.

  15. makanaky says:

    Thank you Eeben for your words of wisdom and encouragement in this dark hour in our nation history, Dankie Meneer

    • Eeben says:

      Dis my plesier, Makanaky (It is my pleasure, Makanaky). Nigeria will prevail.
      Always remember: It is how we work our ways towards the light that matters most in these dark hours. We need to give the NA as much moral and other support and encouragement as we can.
      Take care, my African brothers.

  16. peccavi says:

    Oga Augustine, be very careful what you wish for. And I say that with the pride and honour of the forces with which I serve and those I have served alongside.
    What you ask for is a disaster.
    If we can not be bothered to hold our government to account to do its duty then we do not deserve a country. Foreign forces are not the answer

  17. xnur44 says:

    Augustine!!!, please be patient, do not try to put out the fire within with a firehose dispensing methane gas. If it is not ‘panadol’, then it is not like ‘panadol’. When the nation finds the remedy then she shall be made well.

  18. Oje says:

    Thank you Eben, your support gor Nigeria is consistent and admirable.Southern African friend has been with us all the way. That said this issue is not as vomplicated as we try to paint it. Nigeria is not Iraq with a %90 muslim population, hell this isnt even about religion. You cannot pursue a non militarily solution yo a group that has rejected all offers of dialogue and instead used this as an opportunity to commit duch savage cruelty on christians and muslims alike in a way that woll make Al Queda puke. This is supposed to be Nigeria’s finest hour and herald our great “independent thinkng” nation into the world stage rather we have beeb the subject of ridicule

    • Eeben says:

      You are correct Oje. The situation is not complicated at all – something I have been saying for some time. However, it suits many out there to make it complicated and thereby ensure their assistance. The solution to this problem is with Nigeria and not some other foreign force. After all, your NA has been the recipient of extensive foreign force training and by all accounts, it seems to have been pathetic training to say the least.
      Do not sell yourselves short. This terrible situation can serve as a rallying call to all Nigerians to stand up and fight this cowardly enemy. Yes, mistakes have been made but who has not made mistakes?
      However, I must point out that the NA will give its best but if it is poorly trained, it cannot be expected to deliver the results required.
      I would urge Nigerians to read who has been providing covert support to BH. That information is available on the net.
      Our thoughts are with you all and our best wishes to the men of the NA.

  19. Oje says:

    With 42 billion barrels in oil reserve worth an estimated $4 thrillon USD and a relativelow low GDP to Debt Ratio and our national sovereignty threatened what is stoping Nigeria from spending $6 billion at a stretch. I just watched Richard Quest interview with Okonjo Iweala and i swear i almost cried! It is mind boggling the liquid assets of this Nation yet inconceivable the talks of austerity in the defense sector even with a gun pointed on our heads. So many things just dont add up.

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