Dear Mr. President,
On Monday, April 21, 2008 at 0100 and 0310 Hrs commandos from the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) in continuation of Operation Cyclone ( the crippling of the Nigerian oil export industry) attacked two major oil pipelines in Rivers state of Nigeria located at Isaka River and Abonnema River (close to Idama flow station). The pipelines may belong to Shell and Chevron .
Today's attack was prompted by the continuous injustice in the Niger Delta region of Nigeria where the root issues have not been addressed by the illegal and insincere government of Umaru Yar'Adua and Goodluck Jonathan. It also dispels the false impression that peace and security have been restored in order to gain the confidence of potential investors in the oil and gas sector; to protest the continuous detention and secret trial of Henry Okah who was taken hostage during a supposed truce and who must be a key participant in any on-going peace process to make it acceptable to us. Then finally, to show our way of saying "welcome" to the US Naval warship, USS Swift which is transiting the Gulf of Guinea.
In our first open letter to you dated February 17, 2008 which remains valid and another dated January 19, 2008 to Actor George Clooney, a UN Messenger for Peace, MEND expressed its willingness to embrace a genuine and transparent peace program without getting any response. The ripple effect of this attack will touch your economy and people one way or the other and hope we now have your attention.
Mr president, your warships do not intimidate us. Instead they only embolden our resolve in fighting the Goliaths of the world that support injustice. Do you consider the over 4,000 precious lives of your compatriots wasted in that senseless war in Iraq? You have meddled negatively in other countries using false excuses and information in deceiving a gullible American public.
It was your country that once backed a blood thirsty despot called Mobuto and conspired in killing the visionary Lumumba. Now you are repeating the same evil in the Niger Delta and the gulf of Guinea.You dined with Olusegun Obasanjo, who not only committed genocide against the people of Odi, in Bayelsa state but is being discovered as the biggest thief in the history of Nigeria. In your God fearing heart, you know the truth concerning the fraudulent electoral process that has ascended Yar'Adua and his deputy to the presidency, yet your country looked the other way.
We have nothing to loose because he that is down need fear no fall. Our waters and farms have been polluted by oil companies with double standards. Our girls are raped by soldiers of the Nigerian army with impunity and protesting youths are assaulted and killed daily. Even journalists from your country can not visit the region to report the truth without being arrested and embarrassed.
MEND is prepared for talks and will prefer Ex President Jimmy Carter to mediate. Mr carter is not in denial as the rest of you who brand freedom fighters as terrorists, forgetting their integral role in any sustainable peace process just as he has demonstrated in his meeting with Hamas.
If the root issues such as the control of our resources continues to be swept under the carpet, and the governments deception of the Niger Delta people continues; including holding sons of the Niger Delta hostage in Northern Nigeria, then, like Otto von Bismarck once remarked, "the great questions of the time will be decided, not by speeches and resolutions, but by iron and blood".