Hanging in Clint Eastwood movie Hang 'em High.
December 2, 2008

The Wild West Meets the Far East

What follows is a series of random thoughts on Somali pirates and the events in India.

If the Good Shepherd will lay down his life for his sheep, what are we to make of Master Charles who spent 45 hours in his room while his sheep were slaughtered?

According to reports the police, even when they had clear shots, refused to kill the terrorists. Given the inability of police to protect citizens and visitors should we return to the days of yore when citizens armed themselves before embarking on a journey? I can imagine that the TSA might have a problem with that on planes, but how would it work out on ships and cruise liners or in hotels? I’ve already advocated that students at schools should be armed. Should that be extended to travelers?

When I wrote about Plutarch’s life of Caesar, I mentioned that Caesar had been captured by pirates. When he was ransomed, he returned and crucified the lot of them. (See Plutarch’s Life of Caesar, 2.) That’s one reason for the picture of the multi-noose gallows shown above.

The most common fate for noted pirates, during the glory days of the Caribbean pirates, was the hangman’s noose.

Apparently some nations will not allow commercial ships to land if the crew is armed. Private security firms are supposed to take up the slack I guess. So reverting to the idea of armed merchantmen such as sailed in the 18th century is probably out of the question, as is arming the crews. So here’s a question for anybody that knows more than I do. Could older military vessels that are currently in mothballs be sold to private security firms, outfitted with gear that is roughly contemporary with their period of construction, and be granted letters of marque and reprisal to cut down on piracy? I haven’t read about modern pirates in any detail, but I gather that their ships would be no match for say a WW II destroyer, if any are left.

One of the people from Synchronicity said the way was love. That’s true. There’s soft love, and there’s tough love. For really tough love see the U. S. Marines.

Update May 16, 2009

A lady asked me about the Somali pirates at a meeting a few weeks ago. I didn’t get a chance to refer her to this page, but I remembered something about the Cato Institute and letters of marque and reprisal. Here is an article about letters of marque and reprisal, and Ron Paul’s bill pertaining to them. David Isenberg, at the Cato Institute, has an article about privateers and war. There are two videos of Ron Paul talking about letters of marque and reprisal here. Note: These links are solely for informational purposes. I tend to think the Cato Institute and Ron Paul’s positions on the war are not quite to my liking. On the other hand, who cares what I think?