From Femi Oyelola, Kaduna
President Muhammadu Buhari has urged the military to defeat all ideologies that promote mindless killings and anarchy in the country.
He said that Nigeria is confronted by enemies whose identities and motivations are unknown
He stated this while reviewing the combined passing out parade of the cadets of the 64 Regular Course of the Army, Navy and Air Force), the 65 Regular Course of the Navy and Air Force), and the Short Service Course 44 of the Army in Kaduna.
The president who was represented by the Vice President, Prof Yemi Osinbajo said, the swift evolution in suicide bombings is a perfect illustration of the nature of the threats that nations face today, which are unpredictable, asymmetric, constantly adapting to changing conditions and driven by a compulsive need to inflict maximum damage with minimal effort.
Addressing the newly commissioned officers of the challenges ahead of them, Buhari said, the world has gotten to a stage where people can now learn production of explosive device on the internet.
According to him, “The world has changed a great deal. Since today’s graduating classes enrolled into the NDA. The threats that confront us a nation and as a planet have evolved and continue to evolve. Forty years ago, a speech like this would have been situated firmly within the context of the Cold War with its well-defined ideologies, and distinct warring parties.
“Today we speak of non-State Actors and of asymmetric warfare, and are confronted by enemies that whose identities are as nebulous as their motivations. It feels like yesterday when the earliest high-profile Boko Haram suicide bombings happened in Nigeria.
“If I recall correctly the bombing of the Police Headquarters in Abuja was the first major incident to hit the national consciousness. It was a surreal moment, something that no one associated with Nigeria. It was not uncommon, at that time, to hear people argue that the perpetrators had to have been of foreign origin, as it was not in the nature or personality of Nigerians to be suicide bombers.
“This was only about six years ago. In the time since we have come to grow accustomed to suicide bombings, and by Nigerians no less. The targets evolved rapidly, from symbols of authority like the Police Headquarters and the United Nations Building in Abuja, to encompass soft targets bus stations, religious houses, markets. And again very quickly we started to see a trend of female suicide bombers.
“It is worthy of note that until about 2013, the phenomenon of female suicide bombers was virtually unknown in the Boko Haram insurgency. A short four years later, it is one of the defining elements of the insurgency, young girls, some not even teenagers yet, laden with explosives and sent off as harbingers of death and destruction,” he said.