There's more to the article here though it's not long. It's definitely an interesting connection, though hardly cause for brow beating or an invasion of Ethiopia. Ethiopia is yet another hand in the cookie jar of the horn of Africa.
SMARA, Eritrea -- One of the best kept secrets in the international media these days is the link between the USA, Ethiopia and the Somali pirates. First, a little reliable background from someone on the ground in the Horn of Africa.
The Somali pirates operate out of the Ethiopian and USA created enclaves in Somalia calling themselves Somaliland and Puntland. These Ethiopian and USA backed warlord controlled territories have for many years hosted Ethiopian military bases, which have been greatly expanded recently by the addition of thousands of Ethiopian troops who were driven out of southern and central Somali by the Somali resistance to the Ethiopian invasion.
After securing their ransom for the hijacked ships the Somali pirates head directly to their local safe havens, in this case, the Ethiopian military bases, where they make a sizeable contribution to the retirement accounts of the Ethiopian regime headed by Meles Zenawi.
The French commandos started to pursue the Somali pirates into their lairs last year until the pirates got the word that for the right amount of cash they were more than welcome in the Ethiopian military bases in their local neighborhoods. Ethiopia being the western, mainly USA, Cop on the Beat in East Africa put these bases off limits to the frustrated navies of the world, who are no doubt growling in anger to their USA counterparts about why this is all going on.It's not particularly startling that Ethiopia would want to have relationships with Somali Pirate groups. They have power in the region, even if they don't have the kind of power regularly identified as worth diplomacy or "statehood". If it's a factor, it'll be interesting to see how it all plays out.
Now that the pirates have started attacking USA flagged shipping, something that was until now off limits, it remains to be seen what the Obama administration will do. One thing we in the Horn of Africa have learned all too well, when it comes to Ethiopia, don’t expect anything resembling accurate coverage by the media, especially those who operate under the cloak of “freedom of the press.”