Biafra Genocide Exhibition: The Picture Of Starving Biafran Children Is NOT A Propaganda
By Chima Chibueze
For Family Writers
There is no any form of lies and deceit surrounding the scary and gory pictures of the malnourished Biafran children captured in the Biafra Genocide Exhibition poster. It is a well-known history that the war with all its concomitant suffering led to the deaths of those innocent children. The documentary is an undeniable fact. Most of the people, who lost their lives during the genocidal Biafra-Nigeria war, died of starvation and diseases. The painful and unforgettable memories of this wickedness were, they were mostly children. Children who committed no crime. Their offence was simply because they were born Biafrans. For this barbaric and unjustifiable reason, the Hausa-Fulanis and Yorubas in conjunction with the British government deemed it fit to exterminate them.
The starvation and diseases which led to the deaths recorded were caused primarily by blockades- land, air and sea mounted by the military government of Nigeria. The blockades prevented relief materials from getting into Biafra and confined Biafran refugees to the shrinking territory thereby exposed them to easy and painful massacre. Aside this deliberate and enforced starvation, there were other ways Nigerian forces carried out genocide in Biafra. There were mass rape of Biafran girls and women, execution of civilian Biafran boys and men (research “Asaba Massacre”), bombing of Biafran schools (with the students inside), Biafran markets, hospitals and refugee camps.
In the pogrom that took place in various parts of Nigeria that culminated in the genocidal war, Biafrans were clubbed to death, beheaded, raped, the pregnant women were disemboweled and the babies shot or stabbed to death. There are genuine documentations, with pictures and videos, of these atrocities.
We could have used the pictures of Biafran children (of ages mostly below 11 years) who died of kwashiorkor, several heads and bodies of Biafrans, cold-dead faces with gaping mouths sliced from cheek to cheek, naked dead bodies of disemboweled pregnant Biafran women and their dead babies still linked by the umbilical cord, or we could use a less graphical, less gory and less provocative image of starving Biafran children in the Biafra Genocide Exhibition poster. But, we decided to be discreet about it for reasons best known to us.
Those solely behind that genocide, who conspired and ganged up against Biafrans are still alive and walking freely on the surface of this earth. They even hold oil blocks domiciled in Biafraland. Since that war, there has not been any reconciliatory effort by Nigeria, instead they taunt us with memories of that genocide while threatening to repeat it now. From time to time, the Indigenous People of Biafra bring to the world’s notice those threats made by Nigerian security forces and individuals; and the various times they acted on them.
Honestly, it is sheer wickedness, callousness and an insult to the memories of those killed in that well-programmed genocide for anyone to speak of the Biafra Genocide Exhibition as propaganda and lies. I am sure we are aware of the Syrian war and the consequent refugee crises. I believe most of us have seen the pictures of the body of a drowned Syrian boy washed up on a beach in Europe and that of a shell-shocked Syrian boy.
Do you think that those pictures used to create awareness of the plight of Syrian refugees and the mayhem in Syria respectively, were mere political propaganda and to distort things? There is a Biafran adage that roughly translates into English language as “when a coffin is being taken to the grave, a non-relation may subconsciously think it’s just a mere piece of wood.” The human mind tends to lose its humanity, deny or dismiss reality as trivia when faced with overwhelming realities of human suffering, especially when the person is not directly involved or receiving the suffering.
We, the Biafran people know very well that the atrocities committed against us by Nigeria and her partners-in-war-crime were so shocking that they could simply be described as “unbelievable!”, “impossible”, “unreal” by an outsider. This is the reason why we came up with the Biafra Genocide Exhibition to bring the perturbing images of the genocide, for the world to see the murderous conspiracy concealed by the British government all these years. We demand for justice. The world should do the needful and forestall a repeat of same genocide.
Edited by Ngozi Kalu
For Family Writers