Nigerian Civil War

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EMEKA OKOYE. NEOREALISM AND THE NIGERIAN CIVIL WAR. The Nigerian civil war, popularly known all over the world as the "Biafra War" was fought from 2 July 1967 to 15 January 1970. The war was the culmination of an uneasy peace and stability that had plagued the Nation from independence in 1960. This situation had its genesis in the geography, history, culture and demography of Nigeria. The war was between the then Eastern Region of Nigeria and the rest of the country. The Eastern Region declared itself an independent state which was regarded as an act of secession by the Federal Military Government of Nigeria. The events leading up to the Nigerian Civil War and the causes are explained by Neorealism through balance of power politics. However Neorealism does not explain the actual purpose and objectives of the war. Evidences backing this are stated below:
1. The political crisis which linked the war could be explained since it was all about a power drive though restoring unity and peace was one of the aims of the war.
2. The secession triggered by the discovery of oil by the easterners and their fear of losing power over it to the northerners(security dilemma) yet another objective of the war was to fight causing limited destruction and little harm so that the economy would not be in a total destruction.
3. Tribal and Regional Tension between the three main tribes in Nigeria as a result of fear of one tribe dominating another and Britain’s wanting to maintain control over their interest in Nigeria also lead to the war while the war was still aimed at abolishing slavery(freeing the nation).
(M.Abubakar, “The Nigerian Civil War,” Nigerian History, vol. 5. No .8., 1980. Neorealism or structural realism does not take into consideration the aspect of human nature but rather defines anarchy meaning…...

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