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Imaginary interview with a "child-terrorist" in Nigeria's militant zone.


Allizwellby Henry Iyke23 Jul 2013

Books need be forbidden like marijuana, says the teenage
to the wary journalist. His left hand clutching a kov’. In a
makeshift tent, docile on the Nigerian-Chadian border, the lad sits crosslegged after a drill, where he is learning the alphabet of becoming a suicide bomber. Why must we go to white schools? he asks, not joking in Hausa. White schools are for infidels. That's what they are. Flattening dark as
land mine lids, his eyes never move from the camera
nor see the way his guest tries not to flinch. He
discerns he could be executed for this meeting. Clasped
in the lad's right hand, the Quran is written in Arabic he cannot read. His words falter like shots dismissed from an Uzi or mutton on fire. He wants to join the Jama’a Ahl al-sunnah li-da’wa wa al-jihad,
Insha Allah. His sigh hissed through the silence
as he reflects the day JTF’s grenades shattered his everyday village. Images diced before his eyes, searching adobe rubble for his mother. He looked everywhere, his mouth ages,
quivering into commas of grief, but already she was gone.
As he swore, if my bombs can’t, my fist shall slam all to dust.