One of the reasons that the US has lost a lot of support world wide is that, as the only super power in the world, we have the attitude that we should police the world and ensure things like this do not happen. Unfortunately we have failed to participate in any non-military or military action that doesn't give us some immediate benefit (Rwanda is a perfect example). Although I do not necessarily want to see the US acting as a global police force I think this would do a lot to repair our image and it is simply the right thing to do.
The US should take the lead in searching for & rescuing the girls. Our Nigerian government have proven their incompetence in taking care of its citizens for years, and at this rate, without the intervention of some foreign entity, Nigeria will become the next middle eastern, war zone. It's a shame that the Nigerian government couldn't have done something about it weeks ago when the girls were abducted. For instance, increase the security of all schools in the state by stationing military personnel at each institution.
In this specific case, I find it very difficult to justify allowing 234 young girls to suffer when we are able to help. But I'm going to play devil's advocate anyway. When a child repeatedly reaches for a hot radiator, you caution them as much as you can, you protect them from themselves as much as you can, but eventually, you have to let them burn their hand. If you never allow them to finally touch the thing you are yelling "Hot!" at, they will never learn for themselves why not to touch. They will never learn what "Hot!" means.
Now, albeit this is a very simplistic example of what I'm talking about, it still applies. If the Nigerian people are ever to have a country or a government they can be proud of, that is capable of either handling situations like this or preventing them in the first place, something has to erupt. If we step in before they touch the hot thing, they never grow and learn.
What if France had gone to war with Britain on our behalf in 1776? If they won we might have equal representation, but we'd still be a colony. Things had to get bad enough for us to say "Enough!" and full on revolt. The same is true of letting a child's hand go when they reach for something hot, so they can learn for themselves, the same is true of letting a people decide they will not stand for 234 of their daughters to be ignored and forgotten by their government.
I'm not at all comparing Nigerians to children here, if it sounds that way it is completely unintentional. But I do mean to say if we deny the Nigerian people to decide their country needs an overhaul, by stepping in and fixing this for them, it will only keep happening until we stop stepping in.
If we really wanted to stop the problem, we'd go after Boko Haram where it really hurts, by NOT SUPPLYING THEM WITH GUNS.
I know that the kidnapping of the 234 girls was a terrible thing, and I don't recognize the mad cult that sanctioned it as a real religion. I know that returning them home to their loving and loved families would be a wonderful kindness. I know that the corrupt Nigerian government is unlikely to take initiative. But I recognize that that task is easier said than done. The 200 girls are, for all we know, dispersed all across the vast savannas of northern Nigeria and into neighboring Niger, Chad and Cameroon. I also foresee the temptation for us, having spent vast resources to rescue all these girls, to also prevent all the other terrible atrocities going on in Afrika. And I don't believe that we have enough military power to pacify all of Afrika, and even if we did, utilizing it over that vast continent would be becoming an evil empire ourselves.