Somali piracy is the most substantial non-state threat to the free and peaceful use of the sea since the Second World War according to Martin N. Murphy, senior resident fellow, Michael S. Ansari Africa Center at the Atlantic Council in Washington. Murphy said Somali piracy demands a response that matches its seriousness.
Murphy lays out a thoughtful analysis titled Somali Piracy: Why Should We Care? of the challenge in the December 2011 issue of the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI) for Defense and Security Studies Journal published in London.
He asserts there are six reasons why Somali piracy should concern us: political implications, wider geostrategic issues, naval performance, the privatization of naval force, human security consequences and economic costs.
Short to medium-term measures need to focus first on taking down the pirate leaders. Over the long-term, ending piracy calls for building on the antipathy to piracy within Somalia, which at the moment is concentrated in local communities, women's groups and among certain Imams. These groups and local business interests need to be enrolled in multiple, generally small-scale programs that work from the bottom-up to expand employment in existing industries,such as livestock raising, fishing and construction, and the creation of new opportunities in occupations as they are identified by local people.