Friday, 3 March 2017

Clear And Present Danger To Themselves

This blog has posted before on the phenomena of those westerners, who apparently against all common sense put themselves and others in grave danger, by going to locations where they are likely to be taken hostage or killed, usually simply for being white, and usually a non-believer as well.

Philippine Navy Finds The Remains Of Another Hostage Taking ....

Normally these are people are men or women of a certain mind-set, who somehow come to think that they are not going to be ill treated by the people who they are going to 'help'. The help they think that they are offering these people is rarely of much use .... just helping out, or more usually putting the locals in danger by association with them, but they somehow convince themselves that they are serving some noble calling, and go anyway.

The other sorts involved in this danger roulette are either the sort of unwitting idiot who decides that being an archaeologist, or helping an aid convoy, somehow offers immunity to the madness going on around them.

In any event, it invariably ends with these people getting captured, often abused or tortured, and in some cases repeatedly raped. Eventually they may be released after a ransom of some sort swells the coffers of the local warlord, bandit, jihadist etc etc, or if western soldiers risk their lives to try and rescue them .... Or, they are bloodily killed, often with a knife, and the video of their final moments posted on line for the gratification of the blood groupies, and the supporters of groups like the Taliban or IS.

However, there is one additional group, who we had not previously identified before .... the completely selfishly stupid. Jurgen Kantner and his partner Sabine Merz are, or rather were, a couple of wealthy (by most of the worlds standards), retired German tourists - they had a yacht and had been sailing the globe in their later years, enjoying the benefits of a long and healthy retirement.

In 2008 they were sailing by East Africa,
and were captured by Somali pirates, although why they were anywhere near that coast, given that Somali pirates have been operating there for some time now, is not clear. They were only released after 52 days of captivity, and after a large ransom was paid by the German government.

So once bitten, twice shy you would have thought. Not a bit of it. They resumed their sailing and this time set off into the Pacific .... roll on November 2016, and they apparently thought a nice trip around the islands off the Philippine coast would be nice. This is an area where
Jihadi's operate, and the Philippine armed forces only travel in force. Hundreds have been beheaded and thousands killed over the last 30 years or more.

Sure enough, lightening struck again and they were abducted from his yacht - this time Sabine Merz paid the price in full and was killed on
Kantner's boat the 'Rockall', which was later found off Laparan Island in Sulu province on 7 November 2016. Mr Kantner was taken hostage by Abu Sayyaf which is one of the smallest, but also most violent of the jihadist groups in the southern Philippines, and known for its exceptional brutality, including beheading's.

Abu Sayyaf - A Violent Jihadist Group.

They posted a 30m peso (£483,000; $600,000) ransom demand, but after the ransom deadline passed, they killed him in the Indanan area of southern Sulu province on the 26th of February 2017. A video, reportedly was posted showing Mr Kantner being killed by a knife-wielding man.

Mr Katner was nothing if not consistently stupid and true to his beliefs .... after his release in 2008 he returned to the self-declared republic of Somaliland to collect his yacht, saying: "My boat is my life and I don't want to lose her ... I don't care about pirates and governments." ..... nothing more can be said.

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