Outstanding Book Review: The Nigeria-Biafra War by Chima Korieh is “worthy and invaluable.”

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The Nigeria-Biafra War: Genocide and the Politics of Memory by Chima J. Korieh


The Nigeria-Biafra War: Genocide and the Politics of Memory by Chima J. Korieh (who also coedited Minorities and the State in Africa) has been praised by the Journal of Asian and African Studies for being “worthy and invaluable.” The book review stated that “Korieh’s research disclosed hard documentary evidence showing the names of notable Hausa-Fulani personalities and even British expatriates who played prominent roles in the May–June 1966 pogrom of the Igbo in the north of Nigeria. In the city of Katsina, we are told that the mob first gathered in the palace of the Emir, from which it fanned out into the city to attack innocent Igbo residents. As the massacre was underway, the Emir, ‘Usman Nagogo; the former Northern Minister (of Education) Isa Kaita; Musa Tafida Yar’Adua, former federal Minister of Lagos Affairs; and Magajin Gari; [the] Emir’s son, were parading the town up and down cheering them up’ (pp. 12–13). In the city of Kaduna, ‘top Hausa civil servants’, British expatriates and students at the Ahamadu Bello University (ABU), Zaria, were individually and collectively implicated in the brutal massacre as ‘instigators and collaborators’ (p. 12).”

Despite the evidence that there were meticulously planned and implemented political project of exterminating the Igbo ethnic group in Northern Nigeria before the war and in other parts of Nigeria during the war, the genocide has been mischaracterized as a civil war. In what can be called “an invisible genocide,” the Igbo genocide was masked by the attempts by both federal Nigeria and major western nations to down play the evidence of the genocide perpetrated against the Igbo ethnic group as well as its deeper roots in the pre-civil war period. In addition, little empirically grounded work has been done. Especially missing is work from the perspective of ordinary people who experienced the war as combatants or civilians. Through careful analysis of the experiences of those who witnessed the war and other sources, this book reveals neglected aspects of the Biafra war.

The Nigeria-Biafra War is a critical book for African history and international studies. Browse the book using the Free Preview tool now.

See also the new Cambria African Studies Series by Toyin Falola (University of Texas at Austin) and Moses Ochonu (Vanderbilt University).

#Africa #Nigeria #Biafra #Igbo #history #InternationalPolitics #genocide #war

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