Piracy and American Intervention

Seaweed said:
...Meanwhile I have a nasty suspicion (from my uninformed armchair) that our ops are hampered by 'human rights' ROE. The best cure for piracy is to shoot them dead whenever chance affords (and sink their boats); as they are not ideologically driven they might then find their way of life inexpedient.
I agree with your sentiments but be careful what you wish for: Indian navy 'sank Thai trawler'

BBC News 25 Nov 08 said:
The owner of a Thai fishing trawler has said the Indian navy sank it off Somalia's coast last week after wrongly assuming it was a pirate "mother ship". Wicharn Sirichaiekawat said the Indian frigate had attacked the Ekawat Nava 5 while it was being hijacked by pirates. He said one of the crew had been found alive after six days in the Gulf of Aden, but that another 14 were missing. The Indian navy has insisted the vessel fired in self-defence at a pirate ship which had been stacked with explosives...
We quite rightly castigate those responsible for 'blue on blue' incidents owing to a trigger-happy mentality. Moreover, it should be noted that up to now the supposedly 'good guys' have been responsible for more hostage deaths (add the recent killing of a French yachtsman to the score) than the Somali pirates who, to my knowledge, have yet to kill anyone. Does anyone else feel uncomfortable about this or don't you think it matters?
 

alacrity174

War Hero
Karma

Interesting artical, however it is laced with the typical hand wringing about having to rebuild Somalia as if it is the UK/US/ Western worlds fault that they are in their current lawless situation.

Piracey is still an illeagle occupation and yes the pirates haven't as far as we are aware killed anybody yet, but can this last forever or even much longer as there are now more and more groups and individuals joing in what is in effect a growth industry. Also it seems Al Qaeda have expressed an interest in this for raising funds and as a terrorist action, this must have a negative effect on the hostages status, as your average Islamic hostage taker doesn't have such a good track record on this one.

There has definatly been an escalation with the US ship and hostage situation, how this will effect the next attempted act of piracey we can only wait to see. Can we however not have a better policy regarding action against these criminals, somewhere between the Indian/US Navy response and what appears from news reports etc the UK's softly softly approach.

It does seem from what Angry Mac is saying that the lads n lasses on patrol in the area are working very hard, but as he says their is just too much ocean to patrol and be effective, however the ships that are hijacked are all taken to one or two locations to await the ransome, can we not attack these bases of orperatio, target sattelites on the area and watch for small craft leaving then either pick them up (Possibly your option), or shoot tem (My preffered option), as a deterrent to their friends in port to continue these actions.
 

Karma

War Hero
alacrity174 said:
Interesting artical, however it is laced with the typical hand wringing about having to rebuild Somalia as if it is the UK/US/ Western worlds fault that they are in their current lawless situation.
Fault or otherwise isn't important, but the problem is shoreside in Somalia, not the afloat element. If the shoreside support infrastructure can be mitigated then the afloat problem reduces significantly. If we want to improve the maritime security of the Horn of Africa area then we have to face up to the fact that we have to engage in Somalia, either through the legitimate government or through a military invasion. There are provisions in inernational law that could be used to justify that, although I wouldn't see the invasion being particularly well supported given the usual politicking that goes on.

.................the pirates haven't as far as we are aware killed anybody yet.....
It's already been alluded to upthread, but the motivation in HoA is the ransom money and where daths ave occured in that area they've tended to be medical, or accidental. On the other hand the piracy in the south China Sea and on the Atlantic Coast of South America does tond to be pretty bloody, the motivations are different with South America being more about straightforward theft of valuables and saleable items whereas the South China Seas tend to be about stealing large cargoes, mainly bulk minerals, and selling on.

Also it seems Al Qaeda have expressed an interest in this for raising funds and as a terrorist action, this must have a negative effect on the hostages status, as your average Islamic hostage taker doesn't have such a good track record on this one.
Somalia is a predominantly Islamic country, mainly Sunni with a fairly strong esoteric trend. where the motivation is financial gain through ransom then intentional killing just doesn't happen. I would treat with caution anything that suggests that any group is going to use it as terror, look at the motives of the authors. Essentially the security industry isn't reporting that assessment.

It does seem from what Angry Mac is saying that the lads n lasses on patrol in the area are working very hard, but as he says their is just too much ocean to patrol and be effective, however the ships that are hijacked are all taken to one or two locations to await the ransome, can we not attack these bases of orperatio, target sattelites on the area and watch for small craft leaving then either pick them up (Possibly your option), or shoot tem (My preffered option), as a deterrent to their friends in port to continue these actions.
The IMO regulations that I posted upthread indicate a relaxation of the rules with regard to territorial waters in Somalia. Essentially piracy only happens in international waters, inside TTW it's armed robbery and a crime within that state. The regulations have been relaxed allowing pursuit into Somalian TTW, although not the other way round. Going into TTW with the intent to attack Somalia is an act of war. If that's what you would advocate then it's an interesting position to take. Iraq was touted as a pre-emptive action, and look how that's turned out, would invading Somalia turn out any better?

The point about sea area needs to be considered in light of the traffic volumes as well. In the area there is a huge amount of traffic, local and transit. Distinguishing legitimate from criminal traffic by anything other than an intensive boarding regime would be well nigh impossible. Sinking fishing boats has already been highlighted, personally I don't subscribe to the kill them all, they must be guilty of something school of thought, but notwithstanding that the gains to be made mean that any deterrent effect is insignificant.
 

alacrity174

War Hero
Karma

If a country has no functioning Government is it still an act of war if you progress into terrortorial waters?

I was not advocating a shoot em all policy, but I am saying an option could be to park drones, AWACS, Sattelite assets in the areas of known pirate activity, IE Whaer the hijacked ships are being held and watch for pirates movements, then take these out, it would be a much simpler task than trying to find them in the open ocean, would also act as a huge deterrant to those that see such actions, especially if taken out by a drone for example as there would be no obvious cause for the destruction from a somalian point of view from the shore. This could have the positive effect of making piracey not a good career choice, unlike now where $millions are being made.

One thing I can say is I am 100% against getting boots on the ground for any length of time other than a quick strike operation, there is no reason for any British troops to be in this part of the world.

IHS Global Insight has said that piracey especially in the Horn of Africa area is now a major problem for shipping companies and is effecting movement of goods in the area and leading to delays and price/cost increases, this is a problem that has to be dealt with, the current political situation in the area does not lean itself to a negotiated settlement, Kenya has been less that effective in trying the pirates aprehended to date, most are already back in action. Leading to a recruitment drive in effect as other impressionable youths see this as an almost riskless way of endearing themselves to the local war loard and earning money at the same time.

With regard to organized terror groups seeing this as an opportunity, the security industry didn't see any ileage flying A/C into buildings either, but it happened. Possibly not as a terror operation, but I can see a lot of positives for them aligning themselves with their Muslem brothers and also reaping some profits from it at the same time, also how more effective would these pirates be with a decent intelligence staff and real tactics? I really think this needs to be looked at as a distinct posibility.
 
If the merchants do not wish to carry the odd UZI or mounted GIMP,(maybe not allowed Though I can not see there being many PC Brigade witnesses about) then why do they not have a 40 Gallon concrete filled drum alongside the boarding ladder

Instead of dropping the boarding ladder they drop the drum, and sail on

I found it quite difficult treading water in my Duck suit, without the RPG Launcher as an added floatation aid

Jack McH
 

tiddlyoggy

War Hero
Book Reviewer
alacrity174 said:
It does seem from what Angry Mac is saying that the lads n lasses on patrol in the area are working very hard,
They most certainly are, but Angry_Mac himself? Never! I have it on good authority that the hardest thing Mac did on that trip was retrieve one his uckers dice from under the outboard mess table and "accidently" knock the board off his own table , thus saving himself the humiliation of yet another 8-piece dicking. :wink:
 

alacrity174

War Hero
That's it Tiddlyoggy has the solution, have a mass ship wide Uckers tournament on the waist whenever Peter the Pirate comes alongside, inevitabily (especially if we teach em Wafu rules), there will be an up-board and then the lads can hoy mixy blobs at said Pirates, sorted, who could withstand a good 8 piece dicking.
Either that or teach the bloody pirates uckers and they will bve too busy to pinch any ships.
 

diesel

Lantern Swinger
Jimmy_Green said:
Pete_N said:
If you recall, the ransom money was parachuted onto the deck of the oil tanker in a bright orange container. Granted, the money did not arrive in a suitcase, but it didn't arrive via an untraceable wire transfer either.
I wasn't aware that the ransom money was delivered by such means but then again, if we've thought about planting tracking devices I'm sure that the pirate's planners would have considered it and would more than likely employ methods to ensure that they are ineffective, even if it's as simple as transferring the bonds/cash or whatever the means of payment itself into their own containers, whether they be suitcases, Pusser's grips or Tesco carrier bags. Planting tracking devices may well be worth trying in the off chance that they get lucky but I still think that more robust methods should be employed.

aberdeenlad said:
rosinacarley said:
flymo said:
I'm very surprised no human rights lawyer hasn't jumped on the band wagon hear banging on about "shoot to kill policy" etc ad nauseum
The only shoot to kill policy appears to be the French, who whilst a signatory to the ECHR, abide by it more in the breech than the observance. Like their responsibilities to the EU - fisherman's blockade anyone? And the Americans who don't have anything resembling the ENCR/HRA - Gitmo anyone??
Wow
I agree with the french on something, thats a first for me.
Cheese-eating surrender monkey piss-taking comments aside, besides the spams, the French are one of the few other countries to actually do something when it comes to issues like this. The frogs do tend to take a more direct approach to sorting things out whereas we tend to stand there wringing our hands and bleating about ooman rights, and rules & regulations. You can see this whenever we get shafted by the government we just accept it, when the French fishermen feel they're getting shafted they blockade the channel ports. Their lorry drivers, farmers, ferry workers, airport workers etc are just as effective at putting their government under pressure.

Yep, you're right, the frog eating f*ckers are pretty good when the odds are against them. I mean, look at the way they managed to take out the Rainbow Warrior.

Sheer military brilliance.

:bom: :bom: :angry4:
 

Dicky

Lantern Swinger
The pirates should be hit and hit and hit again continuously untl they get the idea that piracy is not a paying hobby. You can only meet violence with the certainty of a more violent response. Anything else is mediocre, and to think yoiu can reason with this particular brand of diseased humanity is pure folly. Give them what they crave - an audience with their maker....
 

Pete_N

Badgeman
Looks like those crazy Dutch folk have got in on the act now, having freed 20 Yemeni fishermen who had lost control of their vessel which had been turned into a pirate 'mothership'. The article I found on the BBC website states that the pirates were set free because Nato does not have a maritime detainment policy, thus it was down to Dutch law which meant any arrest was illegitimate in this case. Does anyone know what the UK's stance would have been should our mob have freed the fishermen as opposed to the Dutch? I would hope that something is in place to ensure that a blatant criminal act does not go ignored and unpunished because of a technicality.

Article: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/africa/8005730.stm
 
Well, Grey Funnel Tankers are being useful at the moment: http://www.mod.uk/DefenceInternet/DefenceNews/MilitaryOperations/RfaWaveKnightDisruptsPirateAttacks.htm

Royal Navy personnel on board Royal Fleet Auxiliary (RFA) Wave Knight thwarted two pirate attacks on merchant vessels in the Gulf of Aden this weekend resulting in the release of 13 hostages.


See what happens when you name a ship "wave"!


With the assistance of helicopters from the NATO task group ships HMCS Winnipeg and USS Halyburton, Wave Knight followed the pirate skiff for six hours, until relieved on-scene by Winnipeg, who conducted a boarding of the skiff. Wave Knight provided fuel and landing facilities for the NATO warships' helicopters and was able to manoeuvre into a position to stop the suspected pirates, allowing Winnipeg's boarding team to disarm and then subsequently release the suspected pirates.
Well, that'll teach them.
 

AfterSSE

War Hero
I think you will find that a lot of International laws and UN specifics have to be ironed out as well as NATO's role in this...

The seven suspected pirates aboard the dhow were not captured in the act of piracy so they were released, but they were disarmed and their weapons destroyed.
My bold, seems to be semantics, but the Ships are not judge and jury and cannot make those determinations after the fact, so the best/worst case scenario is something like what happened to that US skipper who was held hostage, clearly an act that can be acted upon?

Common sense aside as we all know none of those guy's in the skiffs armed to the teeth are on a Sunday school outing, but with all of the PC crap going on, some skipper does not want to be the sacrificial lamb at the altar if something goes wrong, so you can bet they are dotting their i's and crossing their T's...until they get clearer directions from the International Community...ala UN....(when pigs fly of course)... :roll:
 

(granny)

RIP
Book Reviewer
You would think that with the amount of money paid out by the Insurance companies they would find it cheaper to employ a few mercenaries to accompany each ship through the danger areas. Once the 'pirates' realise who they were dealing with maybe they would find themselves other employment.
 

AfterSSE

War Hero
(granny) said:
You would think that with the amount of money paid out by the Insurance companies they would find it cheaper to employ a few mercenaries to accompany each ship through the danger areas. Once the 'pirates' realise who they were dealing with maybe they would find themselves other employment.

It's cheaper to pay out and keep premiums low as it is, having armed Mercs on a ship may just make it worse, the brokers are waiting for the UN and everyone else to organize convoys....no cost to the shippers... :wink:
 

(granny)

RIP
Book Reviewer
AfterSSE said:
(granny) said:
You would think that with the amount of money paid out by the Insurance companies they would find it cheaper to employ a few mercenaries to accompany each ship through the danger areas. Once the 'pirates' realise who they were dealing with maybe they would find themselves other employment.

It's cheaper to pay out and keep premiums low as it is, having armed Mercs on a ship may just make it worse, the brokers are waiting for the UN and everyone else to organize convoys....no cost to the shippers... :wink:
How can paying out ransoms keep premiums low? The cost to the shippers is an increase in Insurance premium to cover the amount of ransom.
 

AfterSSE

War Hero
(granny) said:
AfterSSE said:
(granny) said:
You would think that with the amount of money paid out by the Insurance companies they would find it cheaper to employ a few mercenaries to accompany each ship through the danger areas. Once the 'pirates' realise who they were dealing with maybe they would find themselves other employment.

It's cheaper to pay out and keep premiums low as it is, having armed Mercs on a ship may just make it worse, the brokers are waiting for the UN and everyone else to organize convoys....no cost to the shippers... :wink:
How can paying out ransoms keep premiums low? The cost to the shippers is an increase in Insurance premium to cover the amount of ransom.

Hmmm they get to keep their property, as in they are not paying the shipping company the full amount of what the ship is worth if the pirates decided to keep/sink/sell the thing...which in turn would increase that shipping companies premiums as they would be a risky business to cover insurance wise.... :wink:
 

Pete_N

Badgeman
AfterSSE said:
Hmmm they get to keep their property, as in they are not paying the shipping company the full amount of what the ship is worth if the pirates decided to keep/sink/sell the thing...which in turn would increase that shipping companies premiums as they would be a risky business to cover insurance wise.... :wink:
I'm assuming Granny intended to point out that paying a few mercenaries on the biggest and most lucrative ships will reduce premiums below their current level because of the reduced likelihood that ransoms need to be paid, which does seem to make sense.

However, I've got to question whether or not the insurance companies want a massively reduced risk of piracy; they're making a healthy profit as things stand (because otherwise they would pull out of the market and stop insuring ships on the most dangerous routes), and with the increased media coverage of piracy they are able to charge far higher premiums. I'll have to make some figures up to help in making my point, so if they take $20m per month in premiums and pay out $10m in ransoms, why would they want piracy to stop? Paying a ransom that they can afford and bringing all of a ship's sailors home safely isn't necessarily a bad thing for the insurers - having a shipping company take on mercenaries and stopping their insurance payments, or providing a case to reduce premiums because of the use of armed personnel would potentially hurt an insurance company more in the long term than having the odd vessel captured here or there.
 

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