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Capture & Rewards  & Ransoms of Ships, People, Soldiers and Pets as Ways to Earn Money

© Donald Reinhardt, October 31, 2011
In a world gone crazy and getting worse by the hour, the reward for the capture of Israeli soldiers has been raised to almost one million dollars. That is not a bad daily or yearly income for anyone, but kidnapping, ransoms, piracy and the associated monetary rewards are not very good, acceptable practices or comforting thoughts. This latest report among others indicates that life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness are threatened now more than ever.

Humans Gone Wild – Are Humans Really a Type of Wild Animal Possibly Explained and Answered

This is an amazing world that we live in and share as thinking creatures called humans. We humans are considered the highest form of life, yet what is happening and what we humans can and will possibly do all seem to suggest that we will continue to have many more major problems for a long time. First, if you can, put aside Global Warming and Wall Street Protests for the moment as two major issues to worry and think about. If these two issues are placed on the back shelf temporarily, then we can focus on some other economic and political issues which might help our understanding of some dire human conditions.

Piracy and Kidnapping in Somalia, the Middle East or Anywhere

Almost two years ago I wrote about the pirates from Somalia and how wild and dangerous the high seas had become. I was amazed at the fact that RPG-, rifle- and pistol-armed Somalis in small, high-speed boats would leave the shores of Somalia or special mother ships, positioned many miles out from the shore, and would attack the mighty sea-going vessels from many nations, including the superpowers. And often these pirates succeeded and captured vessels with munitions, oil, food stores and other valuables. The pirates then returned the vessels to Somali ports with their hostage crews. The pirates next demanded large ransoms for the vessels and crews and intense negotiations followed. Often within weeks or months, helicopters would deliver large sums of money to free men and vessels. What a story. Later, I interviewed Captain P. Corbett who sailed many of these pirate-plagued waters and who wrote an excellent book entitled “A Modern Plague of Pirates. Modern Piracy in the 21st Century” which explained piracy and how to protect ships and what to do in pirating events and emergencies. And there was one final thought to all this: How could the United Nations and powerful countries fail to make these treacherous, pirating waters safer? Today, escort military vessels from many nations patrol and try to protect dangerous sea lanes and waters. Nevertheless, these pirate attacks and ransoms continue.

Worldwide Piracy and Kidnapping Closer to Home - Yours and Mine

Piracy and kidnapping have existed for a long time – we will assume that these are known and universal truths. Taking goods is one thing – taking people hostage is usually a far more important act. When a person is captured and taken away, possibly never to be seen again, that is a very significant and sad event. In Egypt, and other places in the Middle East, young Christian woman often are kidnapped, secreted away forever and married off to person of another religion. This is a major issue in Egypt currently and has been reported in a full and detailed C-SPAN videotaped conference. The C-SPAN program (duration: 2 hr and 46 minutes) represents a hearing of the Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe (aka U.S. Helsinki Commission) on the dire situation of Egyptian Coptic Christians and the political future of the country. This Egyptian situation among others is a very important human rights issue. It is also critical to remember that in some countries some or many have no human rights if you are of the wrong race, religion or class. Human basic rights of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness as we know them in the United States and other true democracies may be violated occasionally in these democracies, but these same rights are taken away or excluded all the time in many other countries.  

Almost One Million Dollar Reward for the Capture of Israeli Soldiers

Israel values the lives of its citizens and soldiers. Israel has exchanged many hundreds of imprisoned  terrorists, murderers and felons for a single soldier. Recently, an exchange of 1,027 Palestinian prisoners was done for Gilhad Shalit, an Israeli soldier. Because of that successful exchange the ante has been upped by two new rewards of $100,000 and $900,000 that have been offered as rewards for capture of Israeli soldiers who will then be offered for exchange and release of more imprisoned terrorists, murderers and other felons. Prince Khaled bin Talal, a member of the Saudi royal family, offered a $900,000 Israeli-soldier-capture reward a few days after Awad al-Qarni, a Saudi cleric, put out a $100,000 reward for every captured Israeli soldier. 
Perhaps, some may believe, if enough soldiers are kidnapped, then the kidnappers might one day be able to demand that Israelis leave Israel in exchange for the freedom of the Israeli soldiers. As outrageous as this seems, nothing is beyond the scope of human imagination in these times.  

No End in Sight for Piracy, Kidnapping and Ransom

Despite the United Nations, superpowers and weapons of all sorts piracy, kidnapping and ransom runs rampant throughout the world. Where does all this end? Or does it never end?  Can Wall Street’s problems and the issues of Global Warming be solved by protests or violent and flagrant acts as we have seen others commit? The Middle East with its myriad of war and peace issues are they to be solved by continued kidnappings and ransoms or acts of violence? And, let us not forget, those simpler neighborly disputes some have with those just across the wooden fence, next door or somewhere right in their neighborhood or local community.

Think Well, Live Well, Love More and Hate Not Are What We Must Do If We Are to Survive

“These are the times that try men’s souls” is a fine quote, but all eras have times just like this or that at one point or another. You may have been looking here or somewhere else for the ultimate answer or solution to these problems and I can’t give you one unless you hear the truth and the echo of these words: “If you love those who love you, what benefit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them. And if you do good to those who do good to you, what benefit is that to you? For even sinners do the same. And if you lend to those from whom you expect to receive, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, to get back the same amount. But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return, and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, for he is kind to the ungrateful and the evil.” (Jesus quoted by Luke 6:27-35 at

Yes, I believe, we need to think, live and love well and certainly we must hate less - much, much less – if we are to survive.

Finally, imagine how bad the world would become if they began to run out of people to capture and they stole and demanded a ransom for your pet too. There was an alleged story of a woman, who had both her husband and pet kidnapped by terrorists, and she only had enough money to pay for the life of one. And we are told that she redeemed the four-legged and left the two-legged one with the terrorists. Such is the sad state of human affairs it seems, in some cases.

Peace, Shalom, Salam to all.

Pirates may attack ships of all kinds – pleasure or commercial. Photo Credit: State of R.I., U.S.