Yesterday, May 7, 2014, the Nigerian police offered a $300,000 bounty for information leading to the rescue of 223 school girls kidnapped. The girls were kidnapped by Boko Haram, a group fighting for an Islamic state in northeast Nigeria, on April 14, 2014 from their secondary school. Police offered six telephone numbers for people to call with credible information.
Nigeria has been receiving building criticism for their lack of interest to get the girls back. The Harry Browne method would be to offer $1 million or more for the return of the girls, which would bring interest from private mercenaries. Harry Browne was the Libertarian Presidential Nominee in 2000 for the Libertarian Party and passed away in 2006.
Abubakar Shekau, the leader for Boko Haram, sent out a video threatening to sell the girls to the highest bidders. Boko Haram also claimed responsibility for killing 75 people with a bomb on the same day the girls were kidnapped. The group set off another bomb last week killing 19.
Nigeria had to do something at this time, because the World Economic Forum began conducting its meetings in Nigeria last night. The Nigerian government has been receiving criticism for 'turning a blind eye' to the large scale kidnapping and for taking so long to take substantive action. On Tuesday, First Lady Michelle Obama tweeted a photo of herself holding a sign utilizing the hashtag #BringBackOurGirls.
The United States has offered to send a team to Nigeria to find and rescue the girls. Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan welcomed the offer, however no details have emerged if the U.S. has sent a team there at this point. President Obama has stated that the kidnappings "may be the event that helps to mobilize the entire international community to finally do something against this horrendous organization that's perpetrated such a terrible crime."
A survey by the Gallup Inc USA suggests that Nigerians do not embrace the anti-Western rhetoric of Boko Haram, the militant movement behind a series of deadly attacks in the country. About 6 in 10 Nigerians (adults of 15 and older) believe that greater interaction with the West is more of a benefit than a threat. In Boko Haram's Northeast home base, nearly 7 in 10 respondents say the same. Majorities of residents in other northern regions, which are home to many Muslims, also view such interaction as beneficial.