The black cloth flutters menacingly on the TX21, the skipper of the Texel shrimp cutter has raised the pirate flag. He is not alone. The skull can be seen on a few more fishing boats. Other fishermen have the Dutch tricolor upside down in the mast as a protest. “Blue, white, red, the fishermen are in distress.” An inverted flag has been the signal of an emergency at sea for centuries.