September 22, 2008
Somali pirates sink maritime industry

A bombed boat in Berbera.

Sea piracy has doubled in the last six years, costing the maritime industry more than $16 billion each year.

Somali pirates have attacked more than 30 ships this year in the Gulf of Aden, making piracy a serious concern in the Horn of Africa. The U.S. Navy and its allies have thwarted some attacks.

“The Duck of Minerva” blog calls for targeted efforts in pirate hot spots (also off the coasts Nigeria and in South Asia). The blog also suggests that Western countries recognize the semi-autonomous Somaliland as a legitimate political entity in order to enforce laws within the region.

Blogger “TFS Magnum” is skeptical of the U.N.’s ability to deal with piracy.

“The Maritime” blog examines possible solutions to piracy and the difficult choice companies face in deciding to pay employee ransom or refusing to pay in order to deter future attacks.

After two French hostages were rescued from Somali pirates, French President Nicolas Sarkozy called for an international effort to combat pirates.

RAND recently released a report stating that piracy and terrorism remain essentially separate issues, with the goals of each being financial and political, respectively.

Photo courtesy of Flickr user friendly-fire under a Creative Commons license.


1 comment


This is rediculous. I can’t believe that in this day and age the pirates can’t be dealt with effectively. This article claims that the pirates have “cost the maritime industry 16 billion”. Let’s get something straight. The maritime industry doesn’t pay….WE DO. The cost is passed off to the consumer either in the form of higher shipping, product cost or higher insurance rates. This policy of treating people with kid gloves is getting out of hand.

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