Full disclosure: I have not spoken with any of my former White House colleagues about the situation in Nigeria.
I am seeing a fair amount of angst on social media asking what President Obama is doing to #BringBackOurGirls.
This reminded me of other situations we confronted in my time in the White House – where the lives of prisoners of conscience or other threatened persons hung in the balance.
In these situations, we – various White House offices, the State Department, and senior officials up to and including the President himself – were often working overtime to resolve them. But disclosing that work would actually compromise the ultimate goal, even threatening human life.
I remember being very frustrated that I could not respond to concerned friends and outside advocates with a loud, “We’re doing everything we can!” But still just working, as hard as we could, to get the best possible result.
Again, I don’t know what’s happening at NSS or State now. But I do know that President Obama is a father of two young ladies who would remind many of these missing girls. The man I know is likely very concerned, and doing whatever he can to bring them back.