May 05 2014

Daily News Flash with Courtney Morris on Abducted Nigerian Girls, Boehner Op-ed on Afghanistan, and International Polio Outbreak

Uprising’s guest expert Courtney Morris, assistant professor of African American and women’s Studies at Penn State University and a postdoctoral fellow in the Center for the Study of Women, Gender, and Sexuality at Rice University, analyzes today’s news headlines:

The militant Nigerian group Boko Haram has taken credit for the abduction of hundreds of Nigerian girls. The girls were abducted from their school in the village of Chibok on April 14th and for days their whereabouts were unknown. The Nigerian government has come under fire internally as well as internationally for its inaction. Just today in a video statement reported by Agence-France Presse, Abubakar Shekau, the head of the Boko Haram group that has been carrying out anti-government attacks, admitted that he abducted the girls, who will now apparently be sold. Dozens of girls have escaped but more than 250 remain in captivity. Click here for a Reuters article and here for a USA Today article about the story.

House Speaker John Boehner in an Op-ed this morning on, warned that President Obama runs the risk of repeating Iraq’s mistakes in Afghanistan if US troops pull out too soon. The warning came as the CIA is pulling back from its counter-terrorism operations in the Southern and Eastern parts of Afghanistan. Boehner wrote, “[O]f all the challenges facing our strategy for Afghanistan, the most potentially damaging and completely avoidable is quitting just short of the goal line.” He added, “I am convinced history will judge both the executive branch and the legislative branch not on whether we ended wars, but how we ended them.” Click here for a article about the story.

A worldwide outbreak of polio has health authorities worried. The debilitating disease which strikes children under the age of 5, often leaving them paralyzed for life, has been eradicated in the US but has flared up in recent months in parts of Asia, Africa, and the Middle East. The World Health Organization has called the outbreaks “an extraordinary event.” Polio spreads through contaminated water and has reappeared in countries like Syria where war has destroyed public infrastructure, as well as in Iraq and Afghanistan where the US has fought wars. The World Health Organization is pushing for Polio’s resurgence to be declared an international health emergency. Click here for a Washington Post article about the story.

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