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Somali pirates seize American crew

20-man crew taken hostage


 

Somali pirates today seized an American-flagged container ship and took its 20 American crew members hostage. This is the first time Americans have been captured in a region that has been plagued by more than 50 pirate attacks on commercial ships this year. More than a dozen international naval vessels patrol the sea lanes off Somali to little affect – possibly because their methods of deterrence are so weak. A Canadian frigate stopped one suspected pirate attack last weekend by deploying a helicopter armed with a large stop sign. The pirates turned away but were left free to resume their attacks later.

New York Times


 
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Somali pirates seize American crew

  1. Yarrr! Those dreaded Somali pirates have gone too far. We’ll see how their sturdy pirate skiffs fare against a US air strike.

  2. “Canadian helicopter armed with a large stop sign” — Are we seriously fighting pirates with flying crossing guards! Don’t let those Fox News Red Eye duchebags hear about this one.

    • Tricky rules of engagement, though. The military forces of freedom-loving countries likely cannot just blow up “suspected” pirate vessels. The Canadian helicopter (please tell us it returned safely to ship…) warned it not to get any closer to a potential victim. It didn’t. What else to do?

      As sad as it would be for the innocent crew, blowing up the next three hijacked vessels would likely deter further piracy pretty effectively. But we won’t do that. So we’ll pay the ransom, few or no innocent people get hurt, and we’re stuck with this for years.

      • This piracy is probably the most lucrative venture in Somalia right now and there is little chance of serious repercussions; this formula almost guarantees it will get worse. I can see a few things happening in the future: more international navy ships in the area, air strikes onto known ports and finally, private cargo ships armed to the teeth with private security firms. Somehow though, I’m guessing the peg-leg and shoulder parrot demands in Somalia will continue for a while still.

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