Africa Center Assistant Director Joshua Meservey writes for The Hill on why Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan should not negotiate with the Boko Haram members who abducted more than 200 schoolgirls in April:
Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan has said he will not negotiate with terrorist organization Boko Haram for the release of the kidnapped Chibok schoolgirls, but one wonders how long his resolve will hold. His government’s reputation has been so sullied by the kidnappings and allegations that $20 billion in oil revenue has gone AWOL that it is reportedly going to spend up to $1 billion on a public relations firm.
Jonathan needs a win. Getting the girls back would be a big one, but there is no viable military solution for doing so. His public refusal to negotiate may be a feint to provide cover for a secret deal without admitting he made concessions — the government reportedly used such a ruse in May last year, and there are rumors it is doing it again.