Until recently, nine out of ten people would have described a pirate as a wooden-legged Johnny Debb, prowling the interwebs for mighty digital loot while constantly on the run from the Her Majesty’s Royal Navy cybercrime division about to nail him to the DMCA. But the modern pirate did not trade his parrot for an iPod, no matter what the MPAA wants you to believe.
If you spent the last months under a rock here’s the what your tax dollars are up to:
Somali pirates are big in business these days. Numerous attacks in the recent months made AK-toting ship hijackers on speedboats a common nuisance at the Horn of Africa, or especially in the Gulf of Aden. This did prompt NATO, Russia and even India (who’s quite at work sinking ships there btw.) to send warships to the region and mop up those buggers.
Now, while i’m always for a military solution regardless of the problem, i have some quarms about this mission – and it’s not the loss of life on behalf of the Somali populace:
Considering one of the captured vessels has been shipping a quarter of Saudia Arabia’s oil production around with a crew of 25, i have no reason to be under surveillance by a security guard while buying burgers at McDonald’s. How comes companies who don’t hestitate for a moment to guard their land based assets let their multimillion dollar ships and cargo go completely, utterly unprotected? I’m not talking 127mm cannons but a few MP5s and capable hands to use them.
The continual pullout of IRAQ will see a lot of private military contractors out of a job. How about placing them on vessels going through pirate infested waters? What makes everybody think we need to send our billion dollar navies to do the job of a coast guard just because some insurance companies start to get nervous seizures?