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What Happened to #BringBackOurGirls?

What Happened to #BringBackOurGirls?

Disappointing results of hashtag diplomacy.

A few months ago, social media was buzzing with the hashtag #BringBackOurGirls. Meant to raise awareness of the tragic situation in Nigeria where over 200 young girls were kidnapped by an Islamic extremist group, Boko Haram, #BringBackOurGirls garnered international attention. The New York Times reported in May:

That was April 15 in northern Nigeria. The girls were kidnapped by an extremist Muslim group called Boko Haram, whose name in the Hausa language means “Western education is a sin.

These girls, ages 15 to 18 and Christians and Muslims alike, knew the risks of seeking an education, and schools in the area had closed in March for fear of terror attacks. But this school had reopened so that the girls — the stars of their families and villages — could take their final exams. They were expected to move on to become teachers, doctors, lawyers.

Instead, they reportedly are being auctioned off for $12 each to become “wives” of militants. About 50 girls escaped, but the police say that 276 are still missing — and the Nigerian government has done next to nothing to recover the girls.

People took to Twitter with the hashtag “#BringBackOurGirls, the first lady joined in and then nothing happened. Months later and still… nothing.

This video report is from July 7:

About a month ago, former British Prime Minister, Gordon Brown, made a statement that was about as effective as the hashtag. The Ottawa Citizen reported:

 Former British Prime Minister Gordon Brown, in his role as a UN global ambassador, tried to keep up hope for the girls’ return on the bleak anniversary, but his words had a hollow ring.

“The world has not forgotten these girls. Not in a 100 days. Not for one day,” Brown wrote.

Yes it has. The universal outrage that greeted the abduction, and the massive effort to mobilize the global community to confront the terrorists and rescue the girls, has dissipated. Western governments talked tough, promised big, but in the end, did precious little to help save the girls.

A world-wide Bring Back Our Girls campaign led by politicians, religious leaders and celebrities swept across continents and energized people. There was hope, but it was only fleeting. Once the sad faces that tugged at our heartstrings disappeared from our TV screens, the outrage faded, and governments moved on to the next crisis in the headlines, promises forgotten. People returned to their busy lives, and the Bring Back Our Girls campaign fizzled.

What is clear though, is that by all accounts, the Nigerian government is either unwilling or ill equipped to handle Boko Haram. Likely both. Nigerians protested, demanded the government intervene and mount a rescue effort to retrieve the missing girls, but their pleas fell on deaf ears.

Earlier this month, US intelligence spotted what appeared to be groups of the missing girls.

Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan, who faces re-election in February, is under political pressure to secure the girls’ release, with some people urging him to agree to a prisoner swap.

His government has ruled out a rescue operation, saying it is unwilling to risk the girls’ lives, or a prisoner swap.

“We don’t exchange innocent people for criminals. That is not in the cards,” said Mr. Jonathan’s spokesman, Reuben Abati, last week in an interview.

While the Nigerian government doesn’t seem to be actively pursuing the girls, several intermediaries have attempted negotiations. Reportedly, the negotiations where neither encouraged nor discouraged by Nigerian officials. According to one intermediary, and contradictory to earlier reports, the girls are being treated as special prisoners and are unharmed.

Just yesterday, a video was released showing Boko Haram claiming a Nigerian town as part of the Islamic caliphate. The Nigerian government responded:

In a statement by the Defence spokesman, Major General Chris Olukolade, insisted that the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the country remained intact.

“The claim is empty. The sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Nigerian state is still intact. Any group of terrorists laying claim to any portion of the country will not be allowed to get away with that expression of delusion and crime.

“Appropriate military operations to secure that area from the activities of the bandits are still ongoing,” the statement read.

While the world may have forgotten and the hashtag is no longer trending, our thoughts and prayers remain with the captured girls whose fate remains uncertain.

Follow Kemberlee Kaye on Twitter


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You must remember that with Demorats it is not the results that count but the INTENT! Just like obama and the rescue of Foley. He postponed it for over a month and then there was no one there when the rescue was attempted. But he announced it anyway because it SHOWED that he did care but failed.

“Disappointing results of hashtag diplomacy.”

Not for me. I was totally appointed. I know stupid when I see it…

and, brother, this regime has generated some scenery…!!!

Dear Michelle His Belle: Let’s see, Girl, you’re married to the ‘Twit who can’t attend a KIA American General’s funeral due to his Golfing Schedule..? Okay, then maybe you’re married to the pinhead who returned immediately to the Golf Course after issuing a statement in response to the beheading of an American Hostage by Islamist Butchers..? Orrrr…might you be married to the loathsome coward who sent race hustling cabinet and advisor members to Fergusen, but issued NOT a word about waiting for evidence and a grand jury. Okay…Okaaaaaaay…Might you be married to the subject of Lefty NYTimes Harriden, Mo’Dowd, who roasted Mr. Hubby on a parody spit with her faux “Gettysburg Address” switched to the Links..?

ALL of the Above, you say??

Okay, then we totally understand your utter absence of Follow Through on the Nigerian Girls, Miss Hashtag.

Phillep Harding | August 25, 2014 at 6:12 pm

They have undoubtedly been raped by now, and so would be regarded as even less than women normally are regarded.

If the Moslem girls are not stoned for adultery for being raped.

    They were Christian girls. Some of them have been killed. Most of them were raped. Some managed to run away…. and some committed suicide.

    I saw a picture that indicated that they were forced to convert to being Muslims but that did not save them anyway.

    The murder, kidnappings and mayhem continues in that region thanks to Boko Haram. No one is doing anything to stop them.

Henry Hawkins | August 25, 2014 at 7:28 pm

Michelle: “Fuck ’em. They’re no longer trending.”

They aren’t dead yet so it isn’t certain they will be voting democrat from now on.

Michelle holding up that sign was inane. To whom was she appealing? The president maybe? It would make the same amount of sense if Obama himself held the sign.

Boko Haram read her sign, immediately did a diligent check to see whether it had any of “our” girls, confirmed that it did not, and that was that.

That hashtag stuff is powerful! I can’t wait until deer season gets here so I can go #deer hunting.

Hashtag diplomacy, Future entry on “I Love the 10’s”.

BannedbytheGuardian | August 25, 2014 at 11:57 pm

She is fixing a new one

# bringbackourholidaystohawaiiwherethewaterisnotcold.

Better yet, what ever happened to Michelle Obama?


RE: “What Happened to #BringBackOurGirls?”
Pretty much the same thing as “#UnitedForUkraine” — NOTHING.

Liberals got to show that they care. They REALLY CARE.
But Liberals are impotent, incapable of learning, and don’t take responsibility for the damage that they do in the world.
Nothing to see here, serfs. More along.

Slacktivism in action. Meriam Ibram, the Christian woman sentenced to death and forced to give birth while shackled to the prison floor in Sudan, she never got much of a hashtag movement. But she’s free because the Italian Foreign Minister and the Vatican worked for her release when the American State Department drug its feet. She is married to a naturalized American and as Mark Steyn put it, they could’ve issued her papers and then told Sudan to “give back our girl”, but no. Too Christian vs Muslim for even slacktivists. But major point: it takes commitment and action. Italian diplomats apparently worked for weeks to get her out.