World: Africa's Divided House

IT has become something of a cliche to note that Biafra's rebellion confronted Nigeria with the same issue that the U.S. faced when the South seceded more than a century ago. The great difference is that the American Civil War had few immediate repercussions outside the U.S.; Nigeria's conflict is certain to strike resonant chords across the continent of Africa for decades to come.

At its present stage of development, Black Africa is gripped by primeval tribal loyalties that stand in the way of nation building. Had the Ibo secession worked, some of Africa's...

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