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The status of buccaneers as pirates or privateers was ambiguous. Many of the letters of marque used by buccaneers were legally invalid, and any form of legal paper in that illiterate age might be passed off as a letter of marque. Simultaneously, French and English governors tended to turn a blind eye to the buccaneers' depredations against the Spanish, even when unlicensed.

A hundred years before the French Revolution , the buccaneer companies were run on lines in which liberty , equality and fraternity were the rule. In a buccaneer camp, the captain was elected and could be deposed by the votes of the crew. The crew, and not the captain, decided whether to attack a particular ship, or a fleet of ships. Spoils were evenly divided into shares; the captain received an agreed amount for the ship, plus a portion of the share of the prize money , usually five or six shares.

Crews generally had no regular wages, being paid only from their shares of the plunder, a system called " no purchase, no pay " by Modyford or "no prey, no pay" by Exquemelin. There was a strong esprit among buccaneers.

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This, combined with overwhelming numbers, allowed them to win battles and raids. There was also, for some time, a social insurance system guaranteeing compensation for battle wounds at a worked-out scale. Buccaneers initially used small boats to attack Spanish galleons surreptitiously, often at night, and climb aboard before the alarm could be raised.

Buccaneers were expert marksmen and would quickly kill the helmsman and any officers aboard. Buccaneers' reputation as cruel pirates grew to the point that, eventually, most victims would surrender, hoping they would not be killed. When buccaneers raided towns, they did not sail into port and bombard the defenses, as naval forces typically did. Instead, they secretly beached their ships out of sight of their target, marched overland, and attacked the towns from the landward side, which was usually less fortified.

Their raids relied mainly on surprise and speed. While Spanish authorities always viewed buccaneers as trespassers and a threat to their hegemony in the Caribbean basin, over the second half of the 17th century other European powers learned to perceive them in the same way. These new powers had appropriated and secured territories in the area and needed to protect them. Buccaneers who did not settle down on agriculture or some other acceptable business after the so-called Golden Age of Piracy proved a nuisance to them, too.

Spanish anti-pirate practices became thus a model for all recently arrived colonial governments. Some expanded them.

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When caught by anti-pirate English authorities, 17th and 18th century buccaneers received justice in a summary fashion, and many ended their lives by "dancing the hempen jig", a euphemism for hanging. Public executions were a form of entertainment, and people came out to watch them as they would for a sporting event today. Newspapers reported details such as condemned men's last words, the prayers said by the priests, and descriptions of their final moments in the gallows. In the cases of more famous prisoners, usually captains, their punishments extended beyond death.

Their bodies were enclosed in iron cages gibbet for which they were measured before their execution and left to swing in the air until the flesh rotted off them—a process that could take as long as two years. It is doubtful many buccaneers got off with just a time in the pillory. However, a pirate who was flogged could very well spend some time in the pillory after being beaten.

After the threat began to abate, literature brought buccaneers to glory as example of virility and self-reliance. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. In the seventeenth century, sailors lived on the hunt for wild beef and pork, smoked meat and sold skins.

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The paper asserted that what began as an attempt in the mids by Somali fishermen to protect their territorial waters has extended far beyond their seaboard and grown into an emerging market in its own right. According to a investigative piece by the Somalia Report, the OBP paper and other similar reports that attempt to calibrate the global cost of piracy produce inaccurate estimates based on a variety of factors. Most saliently, instead of comparing the actual costs of piracy with the considerable benefits derived from the phenomenon by the maritime industry and local parties capitalizing on capacity-building initiatives, the OBP paper conflated the alleged piracy costs with the large premiums made by insurance companies and lumped them together with governmental and societal costs.

Moreover, the global costs of piracy reportedly represent a small fraction of total maritime shipping expenses and are significantly lower than more routine costs, such as those brought on by port theft, bad weather conditions or fuel-related issues. According to the Somalia Report investigation, the OBP paper also did not factor into its calculations the overall decline in successful pirate attacks beginning in the second half of , a downward trend largely brought about by the increasing use of armed guards.

McKnight , ransom demands and payments have risen exponentially and the financers and pirates decided they are willing to wait as long as it takes to receive "high seven-figure payouts". Some benefits from the piracy have also been noted. In the earlier years of the phenomenon in , it was reported that many local residents in pirate hubs such as Harardhere appreciated the rejuvenating effect that the pirates' on-shore spending and restocking had on their small towns, a presence which often provided jobs and opportunity when there were comparatively fewer.

Entire hamlets were in the process reportedly transformed into boomtowns , with local shop owners and other residents using their gains to purchase items such as generators for uninterrupted electricity. Since , pirates have mainly operated from the Galmudug region to the south. According to the Somalia Report, the significant infrastructural development evident in Puntland's urban centers has also mainly come from a combination of government development programs, internal investment by local residents returning to their home regions following the civil war in the south, and especially remittance funds sent by the sizable Somali diaspora.

Additionally, impoverished fishermen in Kenya's Malindi area in the southeastern African Great Lakes region have reported their largest catches in 40 years, catching hundreds of kilos of fish and earning 50 times the average daily wage as a result. They attribute the recent abundance and variety of marine stock to the pirates scaring away predatory foreign fishing trawlers, which have for decades deprived local dhows of a livelihood. According to marine biologists, indicators are that the local fishery is recovering because of the lack of commercial-scale fishing.

Piracy off the coast of Somalia also appears to have a positive impact on the problem of overfishing in Somali waters by foreign vessels. A comparison has been made with the situation in Tanzania further to the south, which is also affected by predatory fishing by foreign ships and generally lacks the means to effectively protect and regulate its territorial waters. There, catches have dropped to dramatically low levels, whereas in Somalia they have risen back to more acceptable levels since the beginning of the piracy. Of the 4, seafarers whose ships had been attacked by the pirates and the 1, who were held hostage in , a third were reportedly abused.

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Some captives have also indicated that they were used as human shields for pirate attacks while being held hostage. According to Reuters, of the 3, captured during a four-year period, 62 died. The causes of death included suicide and malnutrition, [] with 25 of the deaths attributed to murder according to Intercargo. Piracy off the coast of Somalia has reportedly produced some casualties.

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According to many interviewed maritime security firms, ship owner groups, lawyers and insurance companies, fear of pirate attacks has increased the likelihood of violent encounters at sea, as untrained or overeager vessel guards have resorted to shooting indiscriminately without first properly assessing the actual threat level. In the process, they have killed both pirates and sometimes innocent fishermen as well as jeopardizing the reputation of private maritime security firms with their reckless gun use.

Since many of the new maritime security companies that have emerged often also enlist the services of off-duty policemen and former soldiers that saw combat in Iraq and Afghanistan , worries of a " Blackwater out in the Indian Ocean" have only intensified. Insurance companies, in particular, have profited from the pirate attacks, as insurance premiums have increased significantly. DIW reports that, in order to keep premiums high, insurance firms have not demanded that ship owners take security precautions that would make hijackings more difficult. For their part, shipping companies often do not comply with naval guidelines on how best to prevent pirate attacks in order to cut down on costs.

In addition, security contractors and the German arms industry have profited from the phenomenon.

The former UN envoy for Somalia, Ahmedou Ould-Abdallah , has stated that "because there is no effective government, there is … much irregular fishing from European and Asian countries," [] and that the UN has reliable information that European and Asian companies are dumping toxic and nuclear waste off the Somali coastline. He added that he believes the toxic waste dumping is "a disaster off the Somali coast, a disaster for the Somali environment, the Somali population", and that what he terms "this illegal fishing, illegal dumping of waste" helps fuel the civil war in Somalia since the illegal foreign fishermen pay off corrupt local officials or warlords for protection or to secure counterfeit licenses.

I am convinced there is dumping of solid waste, chemicals and probably nuclear waste There is no government control and there are few people with high moral ground[…] The intentions of these pirates are not concerned with protecting their environment. What is ultimately needed is a functioning, effective government that will get its act together and take control of its affairs. The ransom demand is a means of "reacting to the toxic waste that has been continually dumped on the shores of our country for nearly 20 years", Januna Ali Jama, a spokesman for the pirates said.

These issues have generally not been reported in international media when reporting on piracy. It is not a piracy, it is self-defence. Pirate leader Sugule Ali said their motive was "to stop illegal fishing and dumping in our waters … We don't consider ourselves sea bandits. We consider sea bandits [to be] those who illegally fish and dump in our seas and dump waste in our seas and carry weapons in our seas.

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Following the Indian Ocean tsunami of December , allegations have emerged that after the outbreak of the Somali Civil War in late , Somalia's long, remote shoreline was used as a dump site for the disposal of toxic waste. The huge waves which battered northern Somalia after the tsunami are believed to have stirred up tonnes of nuclear and toxic waste that was illegally dumped in Somali waters by several European firms — front companies created by the Italian mafia.

According to a report by the United Nations Environment Programme UNEP assessment mission, there are far higher than normal cases of respiratory infections, mouth ulcers and bleeding, abdominal hemorrhages and unusual skin infections among many inhabitants of the areas around the northeastern towns of Hobbio and Benadir on the Indian Ocean coast. UNEP continues that the current situation along the Somali coastline poses a very serious environmental hazard not only in Somalia but also in the eastern Africa sub-region. In , reports ran in the European press of "unnamed European firms" contracting with local warlords to dump toxic waste both in Somalia and off Somalia's shores.

The United Nations Environment Program was called in to investigate, and the Italian parliament issued a report later in the decade. Several European "firms" — really front companies created by the Italian mafia — contracted with local Somali warlords to ship hundreds of thousands of tons of toxic industrial waste from Europe to Somalia.

Under Article 9 1 d of the Basel Convention on the Control of Transboundary Movements of Hazardous Wastes and Their Disposal , it is illegal for "any transboundary movement of hazardous wastes or other wastes: that results in deliberate disposal e.

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Through interception with speedboats, Somali fishermen tried to either dissuade the dumpers and trawlers or levy a "tax" on them as compensation, as Segule Ali's previously mentioned quote notes. Peter Lehr, a Somalia piracy expert at the University of St. According to Roger Middleton of Chatham House , "The problem of overfishing and illegal fishing in Somali waters is a very serious one, and does affect the livelihoods of people inside Somalia […] the dumping of toxic waste on Somalia's shores is a very serious issue, which will continue to affect people in Somalia long after the war has ended, and piracy is resolved".

Under Article 56 1 b iii of the Law of the Sea Convention :.