In this thoroughly updated edition, John Campbell explores Nigeria’s post-colonial history and presents a nuanced explanation of the events and conditions that have carried this complex, dynamic, and very troubled giant to the brink. Central to his analysis are the oil wealth, endemic corruption, elite competition, and radical Islamic insurrection that have undermined Nigeria’s nascent democratic institutions and alienated an increasingly impoverished population. Campbell provides concrete policy options that would not only allow the United States to help Nigeria avoid state failure but also to play a positive role in Nigeria’s political, social, and economic development.
John Campbell is the Ralph Bunche Senior Fellow for Africa Policy Studies at the Council on Foreign Relations. He served twice in Nigeria, from 1988 to 1990 as political counselor and from 2004 to 2007 as U.S. ambassador.
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