Back in the 1980s, South Africa figured prominently on the West’s radar screen. Protests against apartheid were everywhere; the movement even inspired a song: “Sun City.” With the fall of the apartheid regime in 1994, however, people lost interest in the faraway land.
Although the Christmas day “underwear bomber” Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab has been the focus of a great deal of media attention, and his plot the enabling action for a new round of security measures, attacks on Christian congregations in Egypt and Malaysia have not received similar levels of attention.
Nigerian troops raided the primary base of operations of the militant Islamic sect known as Boko Haram on July 29, in an operation launched in response to a series of clashes that began when militants attacked a police station three days earlier.
In an economy where there are no guarantees, why not invest in cargo-ship hijacking? In a recent interview with Scott Carney from Wired, a Somali pirate discloses information about the recent ship hijackings around the horn of Africa and the motivation behind the pirate attacks.
The UN seems to be ready to move from its usual conceptual philosophy to actions concerning its pledge to undertake a “responsibility to protect” civilians from brutal governments — specifically, those scenarios that would call for UN action. Such action will be limited to the UN’s definitions of genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing, and crimes against humanity, for now.
An Italian cruise ship carrying armed Israeli security guards successfully averted a hijacking attempt by Somali pirates late Saturday, according to multiple reports. The MSC Melody, which was carrying more than 1,500 people, opened fire on the speed boat when the six men armed with Kalashnikov rifles tried to put a ladder on the bow.
With returns still coming in two days after the April 22 parliamentary elections in South Africa, the African National Congress (ANC) has won an apparent overwhelming victory. With 14.5 million ballots having been counted, the ANC party led by Jacob Zuma was leading with about 66 percent of the vote. Winning a two-thirds majority of seats in the parliament would allow the ANC to enact major legislation unchallenged, or to change the country's constitution.
The resistance put up by the American crew of the Maersk Alabama and the dramatic Easter Sunday rescue of Captain Richard Phillips, of Underhill, Vermont, who had been held by Somali pirates since April 8, may cause pirates to think twice about targeting Americans. But some Somali pirates are threatening retaliation for the U.S. military action that resulted in three pirates being killed and one taken captive.