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Sunday, April 12, 2009

Comments

Bill

Wow, maybe you should do some internet searching on how the French have responded to hijacked yachts. They're the only ones before now that actually used special forces to take down pirates. They've been doing it long before your country sent in special forces.

Dep

Maybe they should stick to French ships? I know it doesn't fit with the "French are socialist wimps" conservative principle, but the French are one of the few countries that DID fight back, successfully against the pirates.

Seriously, why try to bend reality to fit ideology?

God bless Phillips, the U.S. military, and the Merchant Marine ...

KB

My apologies to the French.

A.I.

"Cheese eating surrender monkeys" no more! Viva la France!

So who to ridicule now as wimps, the Belgians?

On a serious note though, I just read a piece claiming not all Somali pirates are simple thieves and thugs--not to imply those who held Captain Philips weren't. Some are claimed to be a rather rag-tag coast guard attempting retaliation against European's who are accused of using Somalian waters as a dumping site for toxic waste including chemical, industrial and nuclear and of over-fishing to the point that local fishermen are starving.

The accusations aren't against European nations per say, but against businesses based there. In the case of waste dumping, it is said to be under contract between companies desiring cheap disposal and the Italian mafia.

How credible the story is I do not know. That Somalia has had no real government since the early 90's, if then, is true. And, that this would leave the country vulnerable to exploitation leading to some seeking vigilante-like justice is plausible. In any case, the fact that Somalian pirates are operating is such a brazen fashion is symptomatic of a failed state and the world's inability to deal with it--including both the Clinton and G. W. Bush administrations.

Of course some situations must get intolerably bad for nearly all parties involved before anything is or can be done to make things better. Perhaps the Somalia situation has reached that point.

KB

A.I.:

Are the Belgians still open?

As to the Somalia/European influence question, I don't know more than you do. The basic story sounds true. If the people living on a piece of geography cannot come up with a government, they are prey to each other and to anyone who might find them or their land useful.

If Europeans are exploiting the Somalis that ought to stop, but the only thing that will really remedy the situation is a restoration of some kind of order. The West used to be interested in that sort of thing. We aren't any more. But this pirate thing may eventually force someone's hand.

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