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date: 22 January 2019

Abstract and Keywords

Boko Haram metamorphosed from a local insurgency to a highly sophisticated fighting force capable of challenging the Nigerian military, which says a great deal about their commitment and tenacity. Though the Boko Haram has attracted world attention due to the magnitude of its violence, its unorthodox beliefs and ability to endure, its local dynamics are not well understood. This study accounts for the evolution and growth of the insurgency from its beginnings in 2002 to its current state by mostly synthesizing secondary sources and drawing from earlier research by the author. Boko Haram comes out as a highly adaptive militant Islamic movement amenable to changing its tactics and strategies to survive under intense pressure from a hostile local community, the Nigerian military, regional alliance, and an international community averse to terrorism.

Keywords: Boko Haram, insurgency, Salafism, Wahhabism, preachers, terrorism, Islamism, religion, Western education, caliphate

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