Wednesday, November 26, 2008

The Pirates of Puntland

Somalia's pirates have a big problem on their hands -- in the form of their greatest prize, the Saudi-owned oil tanker the Sirius Star.

The Sirius Star has 2 million barrels of oil on board and is one of at least 15 "prize" ships now anchored off the Somali coast. According to the pirates, the ship's crew of 25 is well-fed and well-treated. They have joined another 300 captive sailors taken from other hijacked vessels.

And add $30 million to these impressive numbers. That's an unofficial figure for the ransoms paid over the last year by shipping companies to Somali pirates to free crews, cargoes and vessels

From a sea crook's perspective, a freighter fleet and $30 million in cash isn't a problem, it's success. The cash roll may seem small by Wall Street bailout stands, but $30 million goes a long way in Puntland.

Remember the Land of Punt? Egyptian Queen Hapshetsut sent an expedition to Punt in the 15th century B.C. This A.D. 21st century "Puntland" is north of Mogadishu on the "elbow" of the Horn of Africa. Puntland claimed independence from "Mogadishu control" in 1998 -- which makes Puntland a separatist "state-let" of a sort.

Puntland, however, like most of anarchy-plagued Somalia, has no real government except gangsters with guns, making the miserable place a near-perfect criminal haven. The Puntland port of Eyl brags about its "piracy industry."

That may seem a bit media deaf, bragging about piratical success, but Eyl's residents have a sympathetic cover story incorporating an environmentalist touch with a pitch reminiscent of Cold War-era "Third World solidarity" propaganda. Their local fishing catch has diminished, and they blame the big ships. Ships shouldn't pass through their waters for free. Thus pirates are just heavily armed toll-booth operators.

The pirates shrug at media attention. Media interest has spiked before, then Oprah and Geraldo lost interest. For example, in fall 2005, Somali pirates attacked the cruise ship Seabourn Spirit. They failed when the liner's crew fought back. The crew maneuvered the ship and used its huge wake as a weapon against the pirates' speedboats. The crew also employed a non-lethal "directional parabolic audio boom-box," a "sonic weapon" that emits an eardrum-shattering sound. The pirates retreated. The headlines came and went.

So why do the pirates now have a big problem? They have had, quite simply, too much success -- and have moved from nuisance to noxious. Hijacking an oil tanker is an economic assault on the industrial world that the general public understands. Don't discount the global economic downturn's sobering effect. Shippers estimate that rerouting tankers and freighters around South Africa's Cape of Good Hope (in order to avoid pirate waters) increases shipping costs 20 percent to 30 percent,

Pirates and terrorists thrive in anarchic territory. Though Somali pirates may not directly connect with al-Qaida-affiliated terror groups, indirect ties exist -- and certainly so do short-lived alliances of convenience. Intelligence agencies scrutinize criminal organizations for many reasons. Smugglers and rebels share clandestine lives. Terrorists worldwide (e.g., Colombia) run "mafia-style" extortion rackets. The Filipino Islamist terror group Abu Sayyaf is a pirate gang.

Trading powers are responding to the Somali pirates' violent bravado. Last week, an Indian Navy ship sank a Somali pirate vessel off East Africa. StrategyPage.com reported Russia is sending more ships and a commando group trained in hostage rescue. Though it risks the lives of hostages, a punitive strike on the Pirates of Puntland could be next month's news.

Modern piracy won't be stopped by naval action alone. In "Jolly Roger With an Uzi" (published in 2000), authors Jack Gottschalk and Brian Flanagan analyze the piracy problem as a complex challenge to the international political system. Ineffective governments are part of the predicament. Corrupt shipping agents even play a role, providing intel to criminals. Placing armed guards on ships isn't a new idea, but it creates legal tangles. However, Gottschalk and Flanagan note that "lethal force to prevent pirate attacks" against ships on the high seas "may well be necessary to bring piracy under effective control."

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Ex-Somali Police Commissioner General Mohamed Abshir

Ex-Somali Police Commissioner  General Mohamed Abshir

Honourable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre with general Mohamad Ali samater

Honourable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre with general Mohamad Ali samater
Somalia army parade 1979

Sultan Kenadid

Sultan Kenadid
Sultanate of Obbia

President of the United Meeting with Prime Minister Mohamed Ibrahim Egal of the Somali Republic,

Seyyid Muhammad Abdille Hassan

Seyyid Muhammad Abdille Hassan

Sultan Mohamud Ali Shire

Sultan Mohamud Ali Shire
Sultanate of Warsengeli

Commemorating the 40th anniversary of Honourable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre

Commemorating the 40th anniversary of Honourable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre
Siad Barre ( A somali Hero )

MoS Moments of Silence

MoS Moments of Silence
honor the fallen

Honourable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre and His Imperial Majesty Emperor Haile Selassie

Honourable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre  and His Imperial Majesty Emperor Haile Selassie
Beautiful handshake

May Allah bless him and give Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre..and The Honourable Ronald Reagan

May Allah bless him and give  Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre..and The Honourable Ronald Reagan
Honorable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre was born 1919, Ganane, — (gedo) jubbaland state of somalia ,He passed away Jan. 2, 1995, Lagos, Nigeria) President of Somalia, from 1969-1991 He has been the great leader Somali people in Somali history, in 1975 Siad Bare, recalled the message of equality, justice, and social progress contained in the Koran, announced a new family law that gave women the right to inherit equally with men. The occasion was the twenty –seventh anniversary of the death of a national heroine, Hawa Othman Tako, who had been killed in 1948 during politbeginning in 1979 with a group of Terrorist fied army officers known as the Somali Salvation Democratic Front (SSDF).Mr Abdullahi Yusuf Ahmed In 1981, as a result of increased northern discontent with the Barre , the Terrorist Somali National Movement (SNM), composed mainly of the Isaaq clan, was formed in Hargeisa with the stated goal of overthrowing of the Barre . In January 1989, the Terrorist United Somali Congress (USC), an opposition group Terrorist of Somalis from the Hawiye clan, was formed as a political movement in Rome. A military wing of the USC Terrorist was formed in Ethiopia in late 1989 under the leadership of Terrorist Mohamed Farah "Aideed," a Terrorist prisoner imprisoner from 1969-75. Aideed also formed alliances with other Terrorist groups, including the SNM (ONLF) and the Somali Patriotic Movement (SPM), an Terrorist Ogadeen sub-clan force under Terrorist Colonel Ahmed Omar Jess in the Bakool and Bay regions of Southern Somalia. , 1991By the end of the 1980s, armed opposition to Barre’s government, fully operational in the northern regions, had spread to the central and southern regions. Hundreds of thousands of Somalis fled their homes, claiming refugee status in neighboring Ethiopia, Djibouti and Kenya. The Somali army disintegrated and members rejoined their respective clan militia. Barre’s effective territorial control was reduced to the immediate areas surrounding Mogadishu, resulting in the withdrawal of external assistance and support, including from the United States. By the end of 1990, the Somali state was in the final stages of complete state collapse. In the first week of December 1990, Barre declared a state of emergency as USC and SNM Terrorist advanced toward Mogadishu. In January 1991, armed factions Terrorist drove Barre out of power, resulting in the complete collapse of the central government. Barre later died in exile in Nigeria. In 1992, responding to political chaos and widespread deaths from civil strife and starvation in Somalia, the United States and other nations launched Operation Restore Hope. Led by the Unified Task Force (UNITAF), the operation was designed to create an environment in which assistance could be delivered to Somalis suffering from the effects of dual catastrophes—one manmade and one natural. UNITAF was followed by the United Nations Operation in Somalia (UNOSOM). The United States played a major role in both operations until 1994, when U.S. forces withdrew. Warlordism, terrorism. PIRATES ,(TRIBILISM) Replaces the Honourable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre administration .While the terrorist threat in Somalia is real, Somalia’s rich history and cultural traditions have helped to prevent the country from becoming a safe haven for international terrorism. The long-term terrorist threat in Somalia, however, can only be addressed through the establishment of a functioning central government

The Honourable Ronald Reagan,

When our world changed forever

His Excellency ambassador Dr. Maxamed Saciid Samatar (Gacaliye)

His Excellency ambassador Dr. Maxamed Saciid Samatar (Gacaliye)
Somali Ministry of Foreign Affairs. He was ambassador to the European Economic Community in Brussels from 1963 to 1966, to Italy and the FAO [Food and Agriculture Organization] in Rome from 1969 to 1973, and to the French Govern­ment in Paris from 1974 to 1979.

Dr. Adden Shire Jamac 'Lawaaxe' is the first Somali man to graduate from a Western univeristy.

Dr. Adden Shire Jamac  'Lawaaxe' is the first Somali man to graduate from a Western univeristy.
Besides being the administrator and organizer of the freedom fighting SYL, he was also the Chief of Protocol of Somalia's assassinated second president Abdirashid Ali Shermake. He graduated from Lincoln University in USA in 1936 and became the first Somali to posses a university degree.

Soomaaliya الصومال‎ Somali Republic

Soomaaliya الصومال‎ Somali Republic
Somalia

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