For centuries, stories of pirates have captured the imagination of people everywhere. But the recent gangs of ragtag pirates off the coast of Somalia, hijacking huge ships owned by international conglomerates, have brought the scourge of piracy into the modern era. While the world sees nothing but opportunistic bands of local bandits running riot, Jay Bahadur, the only Western journalist to venture so deeply into this world, truly sees how it operates.
In Deadly Waters, Bahadur ventures to Puntland, a region in north-eastern Somalia, and tells of the pirates’ lives beyond the attack skiffs: how they spend their money, how they think, and why they risk their lives in often suicidal missions. In the remote pirate havens of Somalia, Bahadur sits down and talks with some of the pirates, their cheeks bulging with khat (the local drug of choice), their mobile phones ringing as the men conduct their business. Bahadur also talks to some of the security personnel tasked with combating piracy, as well as with former pirate hostages who lived on their ships for months while awaiting news of a ransom.
Deadly Waters is a major first book by a young freelance journalist who managed to embed himself in one of the world’s most dangerous places.
PB 300 pages