Hashtag Hoax

April 18, 2015


They are still searching. On the one year anniversary, three powerful countries vow not to give up hope. Considerable work and commitment has been exerted in the past year, since the terrible incident. An impressive 23,000 square miles have been searched. The searchers announced that they will expand the search area, continue to scour the area and assured the public that they will stay optimistic.

They are searching for a plane in the bottom of the Indian Ocean, Malaysian Air Flight 370, not for the 275 Chibok girls who were abducted by Boko Haram, and believed to be still alive.

Both tragic events occurred within a month of each other. The global response was drastically different and highlights the disparity and attention given to children. The kidnapped girls of Chibok garnered little more than a clever, slick and meaningless 5 second cyber hashtag campaign #BringBackOurGirls. The media splash generated 5 million hashtags and lured the world into complacency, but not one child has been rescued from the barbaric Boko Haram who claimed that the girls were sold into sex slavery, forced marriages and intimidated into converting to Islam. While the world dawdled and dragged its feet over how to rescue these innocent children, precious time was wasted and precious little was done to search for the girls. The Hollywood inspired hashtag movement quickly faded into oblivion. Memo to world leaders: cyber hashtags campaigns are a pitiful and worthless substitute for a military campaign to stop and destroy these murderous terrorists.

Contrast the inaction of the world to the Chibok kidnapping, to the tragic event which occurred one month before. In March of 2014, when Malaysian Air Flight 370 went missing, the world leaders immediately coalesced to search for the missing plane. Every technological and military asset was employed to locate the plane with 239 people on board. Remember how the entire global community, 12 countries, many of whom were otherwise adversaries, organized at great expense and extraordinary cooperation to search for the plane’s wreckage. It was a marvel to behold how the world could galvanize such a complex undertaking in such a short timeframe.

Over 17 ships were deployed by various countries, and at least 19 sophisticated planes airlifted to the site to search for plane wreckage and listen for a ping from the black box of a plane presumed sitting in the bottom of the vast Indian ocean. No resource was spared in the search and recovery mission. CNN dazzled its audience with state of the art technology used by the United States and other searching countries to locate the plane.

But for the 275 innocent girls of Chibok, Nigeria abducted in the dead of night by the violent thugs of Boko Haram, the global community did not have the will nor leadership to mount even a drone to search for the girls in the hours following the kidnapping. No sophisticated planes, no international cooperation, no technological and military assets were worthy for the little girls of Chibok. The pathetic inertia and apathy speaks volumes about the status of children. The world did nothing, barely lifted a finger and Boko Haram continues its violent rampage of murder, rape, and destruction emboldened by global cowardice.

This sad chapter for Nigeria and the world hearkens back to the words of Edmund Burke, “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.”

Where was America’s leadership in the fateful days of the Chibok kidnapping? The answer is revealed below. Now we know why nothing happened to rescue the girls. Now, we know why slick hashtag campaigns emanating from Hollywood and the White House fooled us into thinking they cared. They care only about their ideology, not innocent children. It’s not that Obama couldn’t find the girls, it’s that he wouldn’t. Read it and weep.


prayforthenigerian girls

Elizabeth Yore is the former Special Counsel at Harpo, Inc. where she served as Oprah Winfrey’s Child Advocate. She was also the former General Counsel at the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services, and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, where she worked to find and rescue missing children around the world.


The Names of 180 of the Kidnapped Victims

June 1, 2014



From Elizabeth Barrett Browning’s The Cry of the Children:

And well may the children weep before you ; They are weary ere they run ; They have never seen the sunshine, nor the glory       Which is brighter than the sun : They know the grief of man, without its wisdom ;    They sink in the despair, without its calm — Are slaves, without the liberty in Christdom, —    Are martyrs, by the pang without the palm, — Are worn, as if with age, yet unretrievingly       No dear remembrance keep,— Are orphans of the earthly love and heavenly :       Let them weep ! let them weep ! They look up, with their pale and sunken faces,       And their look is dread to see, For they think you see their angels in their places,       With eyes meant for Deity ;— “How long,” they say, “how long, O cruel nation,    Will you stand, to move the world, on a child’s heart, — Stifle down with a mailed heel its palpitation,    And tread onward to your throne amid the mart ? Our blood splashes upward, O our tyrants,       And your purple shews your path ; But the child’s sob curseth deeper in the silence.       Than the strong man in his wrath !”

Please pray for their individual and collective safety, strength, and speedy rescue!

The release of the names and photographs of the schoolgirls who were abducted from Government Secondary School, Chibok in Borno State, the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) yesterday released the names of 180, which it said were kidnapped from the school. However, the government has not provided all the names of abducted school girls since news reports claim that there were 275 girls were kidnapped. The partial list below appeared in an African newspaper here. The trauma and terror that these young girls are enduring is unimaginable. Hopefully, their names will bring home the reality of this horrendous atrocity.

The names of the Christian girls as provided by CAN were as follows: Deborah Abge Christian, Awa Abge, Hauwa Yirma, Asabe Manu, Mwa Malam Pogu, Patiance Dzakwa, Saraya Mal. Stover, Mary Dauda, Gloria Mainta, Hanatu Ishaku, Gloria Dama and Tabitha Pogu. Others were Maifa Dama, Ruth Kollo, Esther Usman, Awa James, Anthonia Yahonna, Kume Mutah, Aisha Ezekial, Nguba Buba, Kwanta Simon, Kummai Aboku, Esther Markus, Hana Stephen, Rifkatu Amos, Rebecca Mallum, Blessing Abana, Ladi Wadai, Tabitha Hyelampa and Ruth Ngladar. Also, Safiya Abdu, Naomi Yahonna, Solomi Titus, Rhoda John, Rebecca Kabu, Christy Yahi, Rebecca Luka, Laraba John, Saratu Markus, Mary Usman, Debora Yahonna, Naomi Zakaria, Hanatu Musa, Hauwa Tella, Juliana Yakubu, Suzana Yakubu, Saraya Paul, Jummai Paul, Mary Sule and Jummai John, were included on the list. Other girls included: Yanke Shittima, Muli Waligam, Fatima Tabji, Eli Joseph, Saratu Emmanuel, Deborah Peter, Rahila Bitrus, Luggwa Sanda, Kauna Lalai, Lydia Emmar, Laraba Maman, Hauwa Isuwa, Comfort Habila, Hauwa Abdu, Hauwa Balti, Yana Joshua, Laraba Paul, Saraya Amos, Glory Yaga and Naomi Bitrus. In addition, the names of Godiya Bitrus, Awa Bitrus, Naomi Luka, Maryamu Lawan, Tabitha Silas, Mary Yahona, Ladi Joel, Rejoice Sanki, Luggwa Samuel, Comfort Amos, Saraya Samuel, Sicker Abdul, Talata Daniel, Rejoice Musa, Deborah Abari, Salomi Pogu, Mary Amor, Ruth Joshua, Esther John, Esther Ayuba, Maryamu Yakubu, Zara Ishaku, Maryamu Wavi, Lydia Habila, Laraba Yahonna, Naomi Bitrus, Rahila Yahanna, Ruth Lawan, Ladi Paul and Mary Paul, were included on the list.

Others on the list were: Esther Joshua, Helen Musa, Margret Watsai, Deborah Jafaru, Filo Dauda, Febi Haruna, Ruth Ishaku, Racheal Nkeki, Rifkatu Soloman, Mairama Yahaya, Saratu Dauda, Jinkai Yama, Margret Shettima, Yana Yidau, Grace Paul, Amina Ali, Palmata Musa, Awagana Musa, Pindar Nuhu and Yana Pogu. Other girls’ names on the list included: Saraya Musa, Hauwa Joseph, Hauwa Kwakwi, Hauwa Musa, Maryamu Musa, Maimuna Usman, Rebeca Joseph, Liyatu Habitu, Rifkatu Yakubu, Naomi Philimon, Deborah Abbas, Ladi Ibrahim, Asabe Ali, Maryamu Bulama, Ruth Amos, Mary Ali and Abigail Bukar. Also, the names of Deborah Amos, Saraya Yanga, Kauna Luka, Christiana Bitrus, Yana Bukar, Hauwa Peter, Hadiza Yakubu, Lydia Simon, Ruth Bitrus, Mary Yakubu, Lugwa Mutah, Muwa Daniel, Hanatu Nuhu, Monica Enoch, Margret Yama, Docas Yakubu, Rhoda Peter, Rifkatu Galang, Saratu Ayuba, Naomi Adamu, Hauwa Ishaya, Rahap Ibrahim, Deborah Soloman, Hauwa Mutah, Hauwa Takai and Serah Samuel, were included on the list.

CAN also gave the names of the Muslim schoolgirls who were abducted as: Aishatu Musa, Aishatu Grema, Hauwa Nkeki, Hamsatu Abubakar, Mairama Abubakar, Hauwa Wule, Ihyi Abdu, Hasana Adamu, Rakiya Kwamtah, Halima Gamba, Aisha Lawan, Kabu Malla, Yayi Abana, Falta Lawan and Kwadugu Manu

Elizabeth Yore was Special Counsel at Harpo, Inc., as Oprah Winfrey’s Child Advocate. She is an international child advocate and lawyer who has successfully recovered many children involved in international abductions. She served as the General Counsel and Director of the International Division at the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. She has found children kidnapped to Nigeria.


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Elizabeth Yore

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