Boko Haram’s attacks on Christian churches, schools, and related targets have caused analysts and reporters to wonder just when the Christians would begin to retaliate. Christian leaders had called for calm in the beginning, yet latter exhorted followers to protect their lives and properties from the jihadist terrorists. It seems that at least some Christians have had enough and are beginning to retaliate.
Yesterday, Sunday, March 12th, at least 10 people died as a result of a suicide car bombing at St. Finbarr Catholic Church in Nigeria’s central city of Jos. The bomber, who was stopped at the gates to the church, detonated explosives killing himself and half a dozen people, including boy scouts who were in the courtyard of the church.
The citizens of Jos have seen religous violence in the past. In fact it had been a major flashpoint over the past decade for fights between Muslims and Christians. Since Christmas Boko Haram bombers have targeted many churches in the city. One of the worst attacks occurred on February 26st, when a suicide bomber slammed his explosive laden car into a church in Jos, taking the lives of at least ten people and wounding thirty-eight. On that day, Christian youths caught two Muslims and beat them to death in revenge.
In response to yesterday’s Boko Haram suicide attack, Christian youths captured and killed at least 10 Muslims in reprisal attacks.
As reports of these reprisals are reported in the press, over twitter, and blogs, one can only wonder how soon it will be before Christians in other Nigerian cities respond.