Killing Pirates off Somalia – Not as Cool as You might Think

I’ve spent a good deal of time in DC briefing the piracy situation off East Africa. Unfortunately, America remains ignorant to the extent of its proliferation, how it will soon impact our home shores, who the true perpetrators are, why the locals ascribe to it, and what we’re actually doing about the situation. Here’s the sad truth. Starting in the late 80’s European countries contracted with Somalia to dump toxic and nuclear waste into their waters. Since the Somali civil war erupted in 1992, European nations (primarily France and Italy) have negotiated with the warlords of their choice (any who will do their bidding) to continue the dumping, except now these nations provide weapons in addition to money. The situation is beyond control. Everyone knows Somalia is impoverished, with fishing as the only legitimate source of industry, but with the toxic waters, even fishing is almost impossible. As a result, locals have no options but to join the highly funded terrorist organizations. Starve or join the terrorists – it’s not a tough choice for a man with a family. It’s the choice I would make. Most of the terrorist funding comes from wealthy Somali’s living in Canada, far from poverty, far from danger, and with complete impunity. The extent of piracy is greatly under-reported. Thousands of ships come under attack each year, with billions paid out by insurance companies. Now, every ship transiting the East African corridor is organized into convoys, reports hourly to Djibouti, is surrounded with Constantine wire, with sandbags inside the pilot house, and with chain link fences outside to absorb RPG’s. Most also have contract soldiers aboard. I can’t compromise US efforts in Eritrea, Somalia, Djibouti, Ethiopia and Yemen, but I’ll say this – snipers are cleaning house! Contrary to current media depictions, sniping is not heroic and glamorous business. It’s an effective and perhaps necessary form of warfare but it’s tragic duty. When you think of the most highly trained men in the world, with infinite resources, putting their crosshairs on a starving teenage villager, it should make you sick. Soon piracy will plague both coasts of North America. I’m surprised the Mexican drug cartels haven’t joined in yet, but they will. The solution for terrorism in the Middle East and narco-terrorism in Mexico is the same. We need snipers and drones taking hell anywhere and everywhere senior terrorists reside, not just in destabilized countries. I’m talking about Canada, Europe, Mexico and the United States – everywhere they hide. If we want to end terrorism, we must kill the funding, and command and control – nothing short. If it’s okay to hit Pakistan and take out a senior target, then we need to do it everywhere. Until then, it remains an ineffectual game of killing pawns.

Killing him won’t solve anything.    

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