April 5, 2013: Attack on patrol boat in Nigeria

On April 5, 2013 Niger Delta terrorists ambushed a police boat in the oil-producing Niger Delta region, killing 12 police officers.

YENAGOA, NIGERIA – Terrorists seem to have no limits on where they can carry out their attacks.

“Neither rain, nor snow, nor sleet, nor hail shall keep the postmen from their appointed rounds.” Sound familiar? Most would say it is the motto of the US Postal Service (USPS). Ah, those stalwart letter carriers!

Um, actually the phrase originated as “Neither snow, nor rain, nor heat, nor gloom of night stays these courageous couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds” and dates back to 2500 years ago! The Greek historian Herodotus was referring to Persian mounted postal couriers working during the war between the Greeks and Persians about 500 B.C. Way to steal a slogan USPS!

I wouldn’t complain if snow, rain, heat and gloom of night delayed MY bills! (Photo: Canada Post Corporation. Library and Archives Canada, S-002226 / Société canadienne des postes. Bibliothèque et Archives Canada, S-002226)

When it comes to terrorism the same thing can be said sometimes. On occasion we see an act of extremist violence that really shows dedication to duty.

Most acts are land-based for the simple reason, I’d imagine, that they are the easiest to execute. Doing so in the air is complicated if you don’t happen to own a flying device (of course 9/11 showed us all how effective a hijacking can be). And to do so on water would require someone who doesn’t get seasick!

Well, there ARE attacks on H2O.

On this day in 2013

Terrorists from the Nigerian Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) ambushed a police boat in the oil-producing Niger Delta region, killing 12 police officers. MEND said it had attacked the boat heading to a funeral in Bayelsa state because government forces had refused to take its threat seriously.

For dismissing (our statement) … as an ‘empty threat’, heavily armed fighters from … MEND intercepted and engaged government security forces in a fierce gunfight at Azuzama.

Statement from Jomo Gbomo, a pseudonym the group uses

So, the next time you are lazing in a paddleboat on the Suwanee River or canoeing/kayaking on one of Canada’s gorgeous boreal lakes have a look out for terrorists!

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By Phil Gurski

Phil Gurski is the President and CEO of Borealis Threat and Risk Consulting Ltd. Phil is a 32-year veteran of CSE and CSIS and the author of six books on terrorism.

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