Boko Haram has become increasingly violent, bold, and ruthless. 

Since the abduction of more than 200 schoolgirls two months ago and subsequent international promises of assistance to Nigeria, attacks by Islamist Boko Haram militants have been relentless.

This year has been without doubt the most violent stage of the conflict so far, with at least 3,300 people killed in Boko Haram-related violence since January.

And where the insurgents are operating they are killing, looting and torching entire villages often with little or no resistance. “If government can’t protect us, let them give us guns,” one resident of a village near Chibok, from where the girls were abducted, told me.