Tuesday, April 14, 2009

How to F'Up some Pirates: The Videos

CNN has two great videos out about the Pirate Attacks in Somalia (which 4 more ships have been captured since my last post; One was Greek, and one was Lebanese-flagged Togo, 2 were small Egyptian fishing vessels). This video is an interview with Vice Admiral Gortney, Commander of the US Navy Fifth Fleet. He describes some of the tactics and choice made in regards to the rescue of Captain Phillips.

This is pretty interesting to me as a (former) Army wife, since the Navy hasn't had a huge jump on the action in Iraq and Afghanistan. No one freak out, I'm not saying they haven't done anything, it's just a little complicated when the war being fought is well... in a desert. And it's high time for the Navy to F*up some Pirates. The biggest parts of this are going to be Government support (which I think it has) and Public support (which I also think it has). Once the public is up in arms, it's very very very hard to ignore on the government level. Especially if you like your job, it pays to listen to the people.

The second video is a legal analysis on what to do with the captured Somali Pirate, who according to reports has been singing like a canary on a US Navy Vessel. I'll leave the complicated stuff to Ryan the 2L, since it's his specialty but I gleaned from it that basically we have him in military custody and we don't have to return him to anyone under international law. We do however, have a treaty with Kenya and it's possible he will be handed over to them. And I'm pretty sure Kenya might actually do something justified to him.

I'm personally in a complicated spot in this. I'm not a fan of "shoot first, ask questions later" as a general rule of warfare. BUT Ex-hole spent a large chunk of our marriage in Iraq, and many of our friends didn't come home because both sides in a war don't have to play by the same rules. I think if you're a damn pirate, you shouldn't expect to be given any sort of pause. When you kill people and hijack their shit for a living, you have to understand it may not look so good should you be caught.

At the same time, I don't know if it's possible for the US to declare "war" on the Pirates. We obviously can't declare war on Somalia (the entire country isn't behind this after all), but what can we do should this escalate further?

I guess we'll have to see.

Update: I just saw this article, and it looks like the Pentagon is planning some small special ops forays into Somalia and the Pirate strongholds. Game on!

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