Friday, December 15, 2023

The 'Spice' Must Flow ...

Townhall's Katie Pavlich writes about the Houthi attacks on shipping in the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden. She reports major Danish shipping company Maersk, known for its containers and container ships, has instructed its ships to stop transiting the waterway alongside Yemen where the Houthi operate. Other shippers are likely to follow the Maersk lead.

Nearly everything Europe imports from, and exports to Asia transits this route. Raw materials and oil headed west, and manufactured items going in both directions. Forcing the circumnavigation of Africa adds time and cost to everything that moves.

Suez Canal transit fees represent 15% of Egypt's foreign exchange earnings. When shipping through the canal is blocked, the fees stop. 

The Egyptian military might be induced to "reason with" the Houthis to get them to cease this behavior. Egypt certainly has motive and opportunity, and should have the means. 

Perhaps you've noticed, the developed world pays little attention when Arabs kill Arabs or Africans kill Africans. Neither is widely reported.

Hat tip to Frank Herbert for the title.