News and Analysis (6/6/14)

“Boko Haram militants dressed as soldiers slaughtered at least 200 civilians in three villages in northeastern Nigeria and the military failed to intervene even though it was warned that an attack was imminent, witnesses said on Thursday” …

… while in another attack “attackers told villagers they had come to preach before firing on a crowd that gathered” …

… the “government continues to say that Boko Haram will ‘very soon’ be ‘history.’  But local officials say Boko Haram is gaining strength and appears to be fighting to occupy parts of the northeast region – despite the imposition of an emergency rule by the Goodluck Jonathan administration a year ago”:

… and a retired career West Africa watcher for various federal agencies suggests that “as long as nothing is done to improve the deteriorating socio-economic soil in which [Boko Haram’s roots grow, there will always be replacements for their fallen members and the group itself is not likely to be eradicated”:

“‘I don’t want compensation … I want punishment,'” said one man who says “his father … was dragged from the family’s Gaza City home … and shot in the head,” but a couple who lost their son “are ready to forgive,” saying, “Revenge will not bring him back alive, and division might bring us more sadness'”:

Israel, livid that the United States is speaking to the victims of its aggression after they said not to, decides the best response is to steal even more Palestinian land. The “announcement drew widespread rebuke from international powers including its main ally in Washington” …

… and “hundreds of Israelis gathered … to question the morality of the 47 years of Palestinian occupation…. At stake is not only Palestinian freedom, but the identity of Israel, says Yehuda Shaul”:

“Until now, Egypt has not had a law defining sexual harassment … [but] Fathi Farid, a founder of the “I Saw Harassment” campaign that documents assaults on women, said the new laws were “of no value” as they gave judges the right to choose between a fine or jail” …

… and Cairo-based policeman said police were part of the problem, admitting he still partly blamed women for the way they were treated:

Ford says the mess in Syria is the result of Obama’s failure to sufficiently arm the “moderates” among the rebels, but the CSM’s Dan Murphy notes that in Iraq, a sustained Islamist insurgency, important portions of it aligned with Al Qaeda, emerged despite … massive support for Iraqi allies on the ground”:

As that the public terrorism trial of “The Birmingham Six” made possible their eventual acquittal, Kahn asks,” If these two men have a trial completely in secret – we don’t know their names, we don’t know the evidence against them – how can we ever have the confidence they were convicted properly?”

“A rogue Libyan ex-general’s effort to eliminate the Islamist militias that have flourished in Libya since 2011 has unleashed a wave of violence and chaos. Reuters described the situation in Libya today as ‘anarchy,’ while The Washington Post warned of a ‘full-blown civil war'”:

“The Hindu group had been protesting against derogatory pictures posted on Facebook of a 17th century warrior king whom they revere. Patil said Shaikh had nothing to do with the posts but was caught by the armed men and fatally beaten”:

If “140,000 troops … haven’t been able to defeat the insurgency, it’s hard to see what 10,000 or so, with a mission limited to training and counterterrorism, would be expected to accomplish if they stayed indefinitely. But … a larger and longer deployment” is now “[n]early impossible”:

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