Friday, March 26, 2010


I discover in my travels that the Somali pirates actually have a business model, and I must confess that I silently sigh that all revolutions could be so well organized, even if you do have to bring your own machinegun. I also discovered in some collateral wandering that the unprotected seas around Somalia have been used by developed nations as a dumping ground for waste, toxic or otherwise for years now, giving the already deeply fucked-over Somalis more to be mad about.

“To be eligible for employment as a pirate, a volunteer should already possess a firearm for use in the operation. For this 'contribution', he receives a 'class A' share of any profit. Pirates who provide a skiff or a heavier firearm, like an RPG or a general purpose machine gun, may be entitled to an additional A-share. The first pirate to board a vessel may also be entitled to an extra A-share. At least 12 other volunteers are recruited as militiamen to provide protection on land of a ship is hijacked, In addition, each member of the pirate team may bring a partner or relative to be part of this land-based force. Militiamen must possess their own weapon, and receive a 'class B' share -- usually a fixed amount equivalent to approximately US$15,000...
When ransom is received, fixed costs are the first to be paid out. These are typically:
• Reimbursement of supplier(s)
• Financier(s) and/or investor(s): 30% of the ransom
• Local elders: 5 to 10 %of the ransom (anchoring rights)
• Class B shares (approx. $15,000 each): militiamen, interpreters etc.
The remaining sum -- the profit -- is divided between class-A shareholders”
(Click here for the whole thing.)

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The secret word is Mainbrace


Natasha Yar-Routh said...

Sounds a lot like the classic pirate articles from the 'Golden Age' of piracy. Pirate operations always seem to be run along Anarcho-Syndicalist lines.

Lefty said...

A connection between piracy and Anarcho-Syndicalism has to be worth a hearty yo-ho-ho.

Jon said...

Many many people have pointed out that, in the absence of a central authority the Somali pirates function as the Somali Coast Guard and Customs Office.

stu said...

i`m just off to sainsburys,anybody want anything?

Jolly Roger said...

Do they sell 9mm ammunition?

Anonymous said...

...or rum?