Thus it Begins

the Wars of Escalation.

CAPT. Phillips has been rescued from Somali Pirates. Great news. All over the interwebs it is, so I’ll save any “Hooyah” congratulatory posts for those who have already done so.

But there are some real questions I have about the entire incident.

First, are we ready for what’s bound to come of this??

The pirates told a Somali journalist that they were angered by the U.S. action, as well as a French raid Friday that killed two pirates and one hostage and freed four hostages.

“We have decided to kill U.S. and French sailors if they happen to be among our future hostages,” said Abdullahi Ahmed, a member of a pirate group based at Harardhere, a coastal town in central Somalia.

Granted, most of my logic throws this in with pretty much anything North Korea proclaims. But I take pause when I remember this is Somalia, and these guys really have nothing to lose. Plus, there’s the issue of precedence. None of the pirates had been killed before. Now France and American both have killed them in the process of thwarting piracy.

The precedent has been set, so now what other countries will begin using deadly force to combat piracy? Personally, I hope all of them. But then, are we, as a nation and as a global community, ready to accept the inevitable escalation of violence that will accompany this? After all, this is a region of the world where power, and the ability to exercise it, is king. He with the biggest guns wins and all. Now, in order to maintain control over his people, the leader of pirates must show he is not weak in front of those he would lead. I see where it’s going, but does the world? Moreover, are they ready to accept what must be done?

My guess is, probably not. My example is the fact that 4 guys in a lifeboat were able to keep a US Destroyer pretty much powerless for 5 days. How much United States Naval power followed four guys in a lifeboat with a hostage and did nothing but watch?

Don’t get me wrong, I love the SEALs. Those guys kick more ass than I will ever see in a lifetime. But all we’ve done is confirm our recruiting ads. The Navy apparently exists to support the SEALs. They’re the only ones doing stuff, according to our recruiting ads (unless you’re a sweet F-18 pilot) and this recent incident proved it. Big ass warship follows a lifeboat around the coast until the SEALs can show up and handle it (with approval from POTUS himself). Thanks, bro.

So now the discussions will begin about Kaplan’s “Elegant Decline” of the US Navy, where we prove ourselves irrelevant by being held at bay by four underfed guys with AK-47’s, or even better the discussion in Congress about spending too much money on ships that can’t handle the problems we’re faced with.

Again, I’m proud of the SEALs. Great job on their part. Glad the CAPT is returned with no problems. But the second and third order effects of this little endeavour are going to be much further reaching then I suspect many are ready for.

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17 Responses to Thus it Begins

  1. Kerri says:

    Well.. you know what? The pirates are never going to stop anyway. So no matter governments do they are going to act like criminals. Give them what they want… they take more. Don’t give them what they want. They vow revenge. Now the pirates are saying that they will kill U.S. and French hostages they take as revenge. We would not have shot them had they not attacked the ship in the first place, or other ships. The whole nation of Somalia is being run by criminals, and someone had to stand up and stop the pirates. You can’t just keep giving criminals money forever. It’s not like they are actually using the money to help the people of their nation. They are common criminals, out to get money for themselves. They can rationalize it anyway they want. They don’t want to use their minds for good, they only want to be thugs. Why should we give in? They are only going to continue anyway?

  2. Clark says:

    Precedence has been set? …..

    Don’t be so simple minded …. precidence was set centuries ago when the world (especially our Marines) …. put a stop to the Baberi pirates.

    When the cost is too high for the pirates they will stop being pirates and stop stealing from other people.

  3. fastnav says:

    Clark –
    I agree with your interpretation re: Barbay Pirates, but this is a different world. I’m merely saying for the present conflict, now the killing has begun. Where will it take us?

    • Olivier says:

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  4. Randi says:

    Why dont we just use a more aggrasive approch to the pirate issue. Use the Naval part of Blackwater to eliminate these terrerist. The approch that is currently in effect is to give theses Somolis money.. Money that is then used to further there exploits of distruction. In the 19th century piritcy was eliminated by use of extreme force, hanging those in public view to discourage others from trying to take arms against innocent vessels and life. Now we just pay up and better arm the posion thorns in our side. We need to stop all the cash flow and just start killing.

  5. DOnovan says:

    Yep. The UN needs to go into Somalia and rid the world of the pirate menace … maybe rid the world of Somalia … THEN go into Nigeria and get the cyber-criminals/scammers there …

  6. Allen says:

    If you capitulate you are condoning this type of behavior.
    Piracy has been illegal, as Clark pointed out, for centuries. These people are encouraged and enboldened everytime they someone pays their ransom.
    It sound harsh but, people operating ships in this area can not be ignorant of the piracy occuring and the risk they are taking every time they board one of these ships. They take the risk because the hazards and risk increase they’re posible profits. If the companies that operate the shipping and the people who captain and crew these vessels accept those risks (and possibly bigger pay days) then they should be equally ready to accept the possibility that in a worst case scenario the job they chose could cost them their lives. It should be a matter of course that the companies require a waiver in order to serve aboard these vessels and have insurance to cover the business losses both material and human as should the families.
    This would pull the lawsuit risk off of the military and allow them to take more aggressive actions. It might also make companies and potential crews think a little harder about what their lives are worth.
    I understand the loss of a anyone caught in the cross fire is a tragedy (I’ve lost one family member and two friends) but, if crime is allowed to continue it will only get worse and the loss of life greater.
    On the other hand, taking a lesson from history, perhaps a sizeable bounty for the capture of these pirates might help. If the price gets high enough, you’ll have them hunting each other down and destroy their networks from within.

    • Kalle says:

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    • Mateusz says:

      I appreciate the fact that Sonlight has adstjued to the changes in homeschooling and is allowing parents to have more options in customizing their own curriculum. The full curriculum package is there but you’re also catering to the parents who either can’t afford the whole package or want to tweak it for their family.

  7. Quacker Magoo says:

    I find it interesting that these pirates (and some of the news reports) almost give the impression that the pirates were just out trying to “make a living” and somehow the rules were broken by the military fighting back.
    On another note, maybe we should handle them similar to the way you would termites or cockroaches… plant a ship with lots of enticing food or liquor – poison the food and liquor with an agent that will give them all cancer or something….. let them take it back to their “pirate dens” and poison the whole lot. (yes I am joking)

  8. charm says:

    I find it strange that the pirates are now enraged that the US and France has finally had enough and decided to take out these criminals. If I point an AK47 at someone, I’m definitely not going to expect there won’t be any repercussions. One of the largest problems is that these are people who have no hope for a meaningful or fruitful life in Somalia as the world knows it. The world can’t continue to turn a blind eye to the crimes these pirates are committing and let Somalia continue wallowing in chaos and despair. Will violence likely escalate due to France and US actions? Most likely. But at the cost of on-going threat of piracy for ransom and safety of innocent citizens travelling the oceans, it’s long overdue.

  9. Niall says:

    The Somali pirates are all about the ransom. And its nationals from wealthy countries like France and the US that earn them the most ransom. So there’s no way these businessmen are going to kill the goose that lays the golden eggs. And killing sailors outright will just provide the justification needed for a land attack on their bases, which they can’t want.

    I think these pirates will continue to apply free market principles in their attempt to build marketshare, even though new competitive obstacles are being thrown in their path. This just means they need to innovate more quickly and vertically integrate to leverage market synergies while lowering costs. I suspect, for example, that our pirate friends have a rather bloated payroll. They need to hire some HR consultants and learn how to rightsize their operations, and thereby improve profit per employee.

    They might also think of outsourcing to India.

    • Peter says:

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  10. Fred says:

    What’ is really make me wonder is what is behind those assomptions stupids analogies amphasis on the fact that the area to controle is big as the Eastern US with a a big map on the magic wall showing Eastern US and all the cities and saying that pirates behaves in such a zone that are impossible to control……….But HEY STOP…..What a stupid analogy.!!!! Those pirates behaves in open waters…..no places to hide….it should be pretty easy technicaly to have an eye on those waters …….specialy American military…..So…OK…What is preventing us ( world citizens ) to have our commercial world trade protected from being hijacked

  11. Edward says:

    Only live pirates can kill US and French seamen.

    The solution is simple — NO LIVE PIRATES.

    I suspect their little haven could be cleaned out very quickly. The townspeople are already nervous about actions that might be taken by world navies.

  12. virgil xenophon says:

    For those who point out that this is a large body of water and that we have few resources and are spread too thin, this situation cries out for the use of blimps–armed and observation alike. Huge hover times, cheap to deploy and capable of wide area coverage. Both efficient AND effective=Nirvana for both budget and ops types.

  13. fastnav says:

    So what can a blimp *do* except watch ships get taken over by pirates?

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