Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Somali Pirates Take American Ship: Crew Takes it Back

Short version: The American container ship container ship Maersk Alabama was hijacked by Somali pirates. Then the Maersk Alabama's crew took the ship back. At least one of the crew is missing, taken by retreating pirates.

Someone from the Defense Department said that the Captain of the Maersk Alabama seems to be on a lifeboat, with four pirates.

I sincerely hope that the captain gets back to civilization safely.

Civilized Places, Not-So-Civilized Places, and Somalia

Using the word "civilization" in that context sounds terribly intolerant, biased, judgmental, and all that: But I'm not in college any more, and don't have to use newspeak any more. I can acknowledge that there are civilized places in the world, where there are laws that conform, to some extent, to international standards: and that Somalia isn't one of those places.

I'm not criticizing Somalis, or their culture: but let's be realistic. In practical terms, although they've got a president there isn't a Somali government, and the territory's a mess. Also a home to pirates.

Let's be Open Minded, Not Empty Headed

"Don't be so open-minded that your brain falls out" is a phrase I ran across decades ago: and it's as apropos now as it was then. 'Knee jerk' anything is a problem: whether it's 'real Americans' who think those foreigners should go back where they came from; or people who think that some foreigners are right because they're not westerners.

American isn't always right: but it isn't always wrong, either.
Update:
"American Authorities to Somali Pirates: 'We Want to Talk - "
(April 9, 2009)
Related posts: In the news:

4 comments:

----- Jennifer ----- said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Brian, aka Nanoc, aka Norski said...

----- Jennifer -----,

Thanks, but that comment registered as spam.

USpace said...

.
Good point. Somalia is not civilized for sure. Hopefully the rest of the 200 hostages held will be rescued. Then the bombing of their bases must be accomplished.
.
absurd thought -
God of the Universe says
lose control of your country

allow pirate kidnappers
to be KILLED by outsiders
.

Brian, aka Nanoc, aka Norski said...

USpace,

Thanks, again, for the good words.

About bombing pirate bases: I addressed the awkward realities in a response to your comment on the April 12, 2009, post. Briefly: the pirate bases are towns. Odds are that not everybody living there are pirates.

Somalia itself is a sad case. The territory used to be Italian Somaliland and British Somaliland. The Brits pulled out in 1960.

Mohamed Siad Barre, who seems to have been a rather authoritarian warlord, ran the place along socialist lines from 1969 to 1991 - and the place has been a chaotic mess since.

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Note! Although I believe that these websites and blogs are useful resources for understanding the War on Terror, I do not necessarily agree with their opinions. 1 1 Given a recent misunderstanding of the phrase "useful resources," a clarification: I do not limit my reading to resources which support my views, or even to those which appear to be accurate. Reading opinions contrary to what I believed has been very useful at times: sometimes verifying my previous assumptions, sometimes encouraging me to change them.

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