Pirates hijack UN cargo ship off Somalia
By Andrew Geoghegan
A United Nations-chartered cargo ship has been hijacked by suspected pirates off the coast of Somalia.
The UN freighter had just delivered 1,800 tonnes of food and aid to towns on Somalia's north-east coast when it was seized.
The fate of the ship and its 12 crew members is unclear.
It is suspected a well organised cartel of Somalis, using speedboats mounted with machine guns, is responsible for the attack.
In the past two years, pirates have hijacked more than 40 ships off the Somali coastline.
First lesson at Dag's School for Somali Pirates;
I.) Ship is low in water on way to port: Hijack.
1a.) Ship is high in water on way out of port: Don't hijack.
I'm accepting applications now for a whole new semester. My last crew were less than sterling.
We also offer graduate sudies in Piracy for Somalis:
"Do not look down gun barrel when friend with sense of humor is at the trigger."
Well, which is the stupid sector? Mark Bowden writes in Blackhawk Down, 2000:
The victory was even more hollow for Somalia, although it's not clear even five years later how many people there understand that. The fight itself was a terrible mismatch. The Somali death toll was catastrophic. Conservative counts numbered five hundred dead among more than a thousand casualities....
Clan leaders I spoke with in that destroyed city in the summer of 1997 seemed to think that the world was still watching their progress anxiously. Photographer Peter Tobias and I were the only guests at the Hotel Safari during most of our stay there. We were the first and only Americans who have rerturned to Mogadishu trying to piece together exactly what happened. I told the Habr Gidr leaders who were hostile to our project that this would likely be their only chance to tell their side of the story, beccause there weren't journalists and scholars lined up at the border. The larger world has forgotten Somalia. The great ship of international goodwill has sailed.... They've effectively written themselves off the map.
Bowden, pp. 333-34.
Forty ships hijacked. Send those admission forms and a retainer straight away, folks. This can't last forever.