The Nigerian Civil War, also known as Biafran War, began in the year 1967 and ended in the year 1970. It’s been fifty years since the war ended, and the war is still not discussed or taught in schools as a part of Nigeria’s history. Those who learn about the war are those who were either directly affected, or have family members that were directly affected by it.
Many young Nigerians today who grew up in the West or whose families were not directly affected by the war know next to nothing about it. However, a couple of people who experienced the war either directly or through their parents eyes are sharing their stories on Twitter.
A lot are from interactions are from a tweet many have seen as distasteful.
Biafra was a WAR. A bloody WAR. Not an INVASION. There were unprintable killings, looting, stealing and ills on both sides. So many many books by the primary players document this. Stop talking about Biafra only from the victim perspective as though it was an invasion!!!
— Ayò Bánkólé (@AyoBankole) June 28, 2020
Many people, from all tribes, saw his tweet as distasteful and asked him not to speak on the matter if he didn’t understand what really happened, and the Igbos who had stories decided to use that as an opportunity to educate anyone who might have similar opinions.
Here’s what they had to say about the Biafran war:
Ayo, EASTERN NIGERIA WAS INVADED, 3 MILLION CIVILIANS MURDERED, FOOD AND HEALTH SUPPLIES BLOCKED FROM REACHING CIVILIANS, STARVATION AND HUNGER. THAT WASN’T A WAR, THAT WAS A GENOCIDE! A GENOCIDE!!!!
— Sisi Zolanski ⚡ (@Isab33lla) June 29, 2020
It was a war fought in “Biafra Land”. I think that qualifies as an invasion sir.
I’d like to know the perspective of the perpetrator because it’s on record that while the war was raging in the east, life went on in the west with parties every other weekend.
So what perspective?
— Nerdy (@Nerdy_Dopey) June 28, 2020
My dad was recruited as a child soldier,he lost his onlybroda wen the naija army attacked,I encouraged him to talk about da conflict as a way to help him heal,alot of our past leaders who had a hand in that conflict,avoid the topic bcos they committed war crime’s and they know it
— Emii,,,,, (@kkmc90156947) June 29, 2020
It was a genocide. In war, we don’t target unarmed civilians, women, and children.
In war, we don’t bomb places of worship, schools, and hospitals.
Go read about what Murtala said at the end of the war. Or Adekunle’s speech during the conflict.
— Read More, Learn More 🔴 (@OsonduOttah) June 28, 2020
they all sing “move on” but till today the war is yet to be over, those who occupy the corridors of power and security have always used their offices to fight the Igbos till this day, they complain and groan when they even buy their properties and build houses today.
— doziecute (@Ezeorahdonalddo) June 29, 2020
Even till today igbos are still fighting for survival.
the real problem that led to the war is still in our face, we see it we know it but keep mute of it.
How come a journalist set himself on fire for a nation
I want Peace, but it can only come when truth is told.
— iamMerky1 (@EmekaD7) June 29, 2020
The war was an invasion by Nigeria termed “Police Action” to suppress rebellion in the East and bring back the break away Biafra Republic under the control of Nigeria as a Nigerian territory, it succeeded and Biafra surrendered. The truth may burn but it cleanses.
— Raw Africa Bloggers (@rawafricanews) June 28, 2020
It’s was a invasion oga. Biafra was place for people of Eastern Nigeria who were pursued persecuted , massacred in all parts of Nigeria except the East. Biafra was meant to be the end to our plight but FMG still came to the East and continue the genocide.
— Mazi Kamalu (@mazinnabugwu) June 28, 2020
When they returned to Lagos in the middle of the war; from Asaba, my grandparents returned to their own pad.
Neighbors told on them.
They hid my grandpa, my grandma spoke Hausa, Cried and said said he was in his villiage. Or they’d have all died.
But here you are, chatting shit. https://t.co/VoevQcVw88
— Nathalie Wemambu (@da_sweetthin) June 29, 2020
Even in war, There are things considered War Crimes. You’re aware that War crimes were committed against us because you rightfully call us the victims, not the losing side. https://t.co/F0F0nJCtOo
— Brian ‘Nnia O. (@TheNkennia) June 29, 2020
This is so annoying cuz Gowon called it a police action to bring us back. The commander in chief didn’t lead his troops to this your war. Know what he did? He got married in the middle of the war. Man was eating cake! https://t.co/F0F0nJCtOo
— Brian ‘Nnia O. (@TheNkennia) June 29, 2020
Since Gowon didn’t obey the Aburi accord which Ojukwu stands for,
It was an invasion and ur brother Awolowo initiated the starvetion and £20 policy,
I know you hate to hear it https://t.co/8qmepDyv1h
— Machuks Okonkwor (@MachuksO) June 29, 2020
But nobody is holding you from telling your part of the story of this so called “war”. You say it was not an invasion, but my mother who had to take her siblings at such a young age and trek from Anambra to Sapele to hide would beg to differ. Tell your part. Let’s tell ours. https://t.co/sDK0PCstIF
— Call Me Cupid….. Asemota (@Bellaifee) June 29, 2020
When you defend a war where civilians, especially women and children are free murdered with cluster bombs, you give an impression of someone without a human soul.
— okechukwu Madu (@okeyjass) June 29, 2020
Ayo so Biafrans starved Nigerian toddlers during the war….?
Ayo which side cut off the food supply chain of the other…?
Nobody thought you that starvation is a ruthless but most effective war weapon? Havent you read the 33 strategies of war?.. https://t.co/InoQ3bASPe
— Frank (@iamnnabugo) June 29, 2020
I don’t think there is a single Igbo person under the illusion that Igbo/Biafran soldiers killed no one. There is bloodshed on all sides of any war. However, that doesn’t remove the fact that there was a significant power differential that resulted in atrocities for one side. https://t.co/iHULi8vAYP
— Nwando Ofokansi (@NwandoWoman) June 29, 2020
If you compare the defense against an attack to the attack itself, you are inherently dishonest.
You keep talking about the atrocities biafran soldiers committed as if they instigated it themselves.
Did you expect people being hunted down and slaughtered to be pacifists? https://t.co/udUM0zxQTC
— Voodoo Doll🏳️🌈 (@mynameisuju) June 29, 2020
The federal government using strategic starvation tactics to murder 3 million sure does sound like genocide. The mantra of ‘no victor, no vanquished’ has been effective in creating a sense of balance, denial and history scrubbing. Causalites on one side, genocide on the other. https://t.co/dRjd5bP6Tf
— Yagazie Emezi (@YagazieEmezi) June 29, 2020
Who was being massacred and burnt to death before the war? Running away and seeking independence for their safety. Who declared war on who? Whose children were being starved to death and shot in the face? Whose women and young girls were taken captive and made wives? https://t.co/UPH1BsA7it
— Pan African (@IzunnaDike) June 29, 2020
Over three million civilians killed, including children& you called it a WAR? Even most of the men who went to the Frontline to defend themselves& others had no guns & amunition but armed with cutlasses and sticks. If that was a WAR,& not an invasion, pls what’s an INVASION? https://t.co/B0qjzRPB5x
— Prince Charles (@bekey15) June 29, 2020
Remember that war after the coup; in the North when igbo people were slaughtered in thousands while they slept in their homes.
Igbo people ran home in trailers sleeping with cows till they got thier homes.
Remember how Nigerian did nothing to protect the Igbo person then https://t.co/N7pxaskWe1
— The Igbo Wolf (@TheIgboWolf) June 29, 2020
I hate this tweet with everything in me, I hate it because everybody who they thought was Igbo was slaughtered or attacked in the north, ‘Igbos’ were attacked in every part of this country, children in their millions starved to death.. that’s your war https://t.co/GsqefpQQoF
— A💫 (@Og_0I) June 29, 2020
This is a deliberate attempt at using a deep rooted bias to describe what can best be termed genocide. Biafra started as a wide attempt at ethnic-cleansing the Igbo race.
That is what it was. https://t.co/PuRaZXBnuV
— solex Casa (@solexcasa) June 29, 2020
Other people asked that he allow the Igbo’s and those who actually experienced the war to tell their own stories.
Ayo, please let us tell our story.. Focus more on your tech bootcamp. You don’t push people and point to them where they should fall, you might be lettered but not educated. @AyoBankole it’s okay to want to be seen as woke but you honestly need to UNLEARN a lot. https://t.co/A2fMx9cZ0f
— Dr Grey (@DoktoGrey) June 29, 2020
Honestly if you are not Igbo please stop telling our story or bringing up about Biafra. Even my grandmother till this day doesn’t even want to talk about it because of the trauma and the triggers that comes with it. Some books doesn’t give full details. So just STOP. https://t.co/HTDEwhI3D5
— Iamchief_edu 🇳🇬 (@Nedu_bahdguy) June 29, 2020
Someone spoke on this as a side effect of not having our history taught in schools and another person was of the opinion that Nigerians brought up in Lagos have no interest in learning anything about history.
See tweets below
Reading through these timelines, I cannot but infer the damage to this nation by the deliberate removal of the study of history from school curriculum.
I am not surprised how many adult Nigerians are oblivious of the actual events that led to the war. And still refuse to know.
— Kelechi Onwubiko, MPD (@Kelbiko) June 28, 2020
Many kids born and raised in Lagos nor too sabi history of Nigeria nd when they grow they still don’t want to learn about historical facts or they just don’t care or they are in debt wit there ethnic biased minds and that’s how Buhari came into power, we go dey alright las las –
— Federico Fellini (@federicodausler) June 28, 2020
Some Non-Igbo’s also had strong opinions on this;
Yeah it was a bloody war. It’s just that our side used Hunger as a weapon of war. Our forefathers starved over 3 million people including women and children to death. It was a WAR But one side committed Genicide. Until we realise we’ll keep moving in circles https://t.co/g345m9hjkK
— Omo Iya Teacher (@Yhormite01) June 29, 2020
The Biafran army at its peak had >50,000 fighting men.
So at least 2,950,000 civilian deaths. There’s a little something called the Geneva Convention that would have something to say about that.
But apparently I must be Igbo to say what is so obvious.
— David Hundeyin🔴 (@DavidHundeyin) June 28, 2020