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Authored by Lieutenant Colonel Clarence J. Bouchat (USAF, Ret.).
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An understanding the political economy of Nigeria is needed to reveal the root causes of its many ethnic, religious, economic, and political problems and to address them for the long term. The pressures now weighing on Nigeria could literally fracture the state along deep fault lines if rampant corruption and partisanship continues. As mutually important partners for both of our interests in Africa, the United States should assist in specific but indirect ways to help Nigerians overcome their political economic problems. Within such assistance, the role of the U.S. military is particularly delicate but needed through focused aid to specific programs and sharing of expertise, all best managed through employing units that are regionally aligned to Nigeria or West Africa.