On the first Thursday in December a young Danish-Somali man in women’s clothes blew himself up in a suicide attack in Mogadishu. Four days earlier, Somali pirates had hijacked a 300,000-tonne supertanker 800 miles out to sea. Somalia’s abject failure does not end at its own borders: the chaos is spreading far across its frontiers and beyond its coastline.

On the first Thursday in December a young Danish-Somali man in women’s clothes blew himself up in a suicide attack in Mogadishu. Four days earlier, Somali pirates had hijacked a 300,000-tonne supertanker 800 miles out to sea. Somalia’s abject failure does not end at its own borders: the chaos is spreading far across its frontiers and beyond its coastline.