when i was a pre-teen Pirates stories were the rage. I still remember watching “The Princess Bride” for the first time. All that sailing ships into misty fog…
One Monday - it was my day off - I wandered into Pirates of the Carribean and Capt. Jack Sparrow brought it all back. Seems pirates are back! (don’t bother with the sequels - just stick to the original Jack Sparrow movie: The curse of the Black Pearl. or, find a copy of The Princes Bride and catch up on lost time…)
But there’s a new pirates story that is emerging on the west coast of Africa…
Have you asked yourself why are somalian pirates risking their lives taking hostages from ships passing the horn of africa? Well, yesterday I discovered some stats that begin to answer the question.
Try compating the mortality rate of children under the age of 5 - in Somali, my home country South Africa and for comparitive sake, the United States:
Comparative mortality of under 5’s (per 1000):
Somalia - 143
South Africa - 59
USA - 8
Next, consider the comaparative income of the average population GNI per capita (Gross National Income divided by the number of citizens in each country):
Comparative GNI per capita (2007):
(Check the graph on the right to get the full effect of these numbers.)
stats courtesy of UNICEF (studies conducted in 2007)
Another factor is presented in this articel from thefreelibrary.com:
Of course, I could just be soft… we can always send in the big guns… Check out the alternative solutions as presetned by Grant Walliser on his High Voltage blog.