These photos were recently released by groups operating off the East Coast of Africa. A group of Somali pirates were captured and their weapons inventoried. The condition and readiness of their AK’s is suspect.
You could go with two schools of thought here. One, is the AK is the be-all, end-all weapon that runs and runs and runs. Which assumes these weapons run. Or Two, you can guess that these particular group of “pirates” were more likely than not helpless nobodies who were ordered to go out and hi-jack shipping for “the big bosses”.
Hi-jacking shipping off the coast of Somalia is big business. Bigger then most in the West understand. Warlords in Somalia hold ships and cargo for large ransom payments. Insurance companies are always looking for intelligence on how to avoid these pirates, and not pay the ransoms or policies. And the middle-men in-between sometimes work both sides of the fence, with a wink-and-a-nod so certain ships get grabbed to everyone’s benefit.
Bottom line: The guys in the skiffs typically don’t get much of anything. Looking at these AK’s. I would imagine the conversation went sometime like this, “Hey, Skinny. Here’s rifle. Go out and get big boss a big fat boat. Don’t come back without one. Or else”. And the rifles just get cycled through groups until they are captured or lost at sea.
Right about now, someone is going to say they would test their rifles before going out. Or they would test them after getting over the horizon. Which makes sense to people like us. But in the real world of Somali pirates, coming back with fewer bullets but no booty brings up all kinds of tough questions like, “Who did you give the captured ship to? Who did you talk to? Are you working with the EU or the US? Are the Russians or Chinese following you?”
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