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Piracy News & Commentary

Hardcore Anglo-Saxon Pirate Hunting

The fifty-one decapitated skeletons discovered recently in a mass grave in Dorset, England and dating from 910 to 1030 A.D., are probably those of Vikings, according to anthropologists who have analyzed the skeletons. All were young males in their teens and twenties, with a few in their thirties, and were almost certainly killed in a  Read More 
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Bravo Zulu

A BZ to European Union navies, in particular to the French frigate Nivose and her crew, who, along with the Italian support ship Etna, two naval helicopters, and Spanish maritime patrol aircraft, captured thirty-five suspected Somali pirates, four mother ships, and six skiffs in two days this weekend. Warning  Read More 
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Piracy Update

Briefly updating, Lloyd's List reports intelligence sources indicating a likely upsurge in pirate attacks over the next three weeks during the inter-monsoon season. Pirates at the four major pirate ports--Hardare, Eyl, Garacad, and Hobyo--are preparing for sea.

The journal also reports that many shipping companies are threatening to avoid the Gulf of  Read More 
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Banditry, Not Piracy

A few observers are already comparing news that Somali pirates in Eyl have captured and are holding for ransom three UN food aid trucks and their drivers to attacks on shore targets by pirates of the past. However, unless the Somali pirates are attacking from the sea, their theft and hostage taking ashore is  Read More 
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Nemesis 5000

The Nemesis 5000 is another anti-piracy technology intended as a non-lethal means of preventing pirates from boarding. It may be used in conjunction with other non-lethal means, or in conjunction with armed force (although the manufacturer does not advertise it this way). The system, intended as a cost effective alternative to expensive security teams, works  Read More 
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Piracy News

Somali pirates who captured the Maran Centaurus actually asked for EU Navfor assistance to protect them against a rival pirate gang, just prior to the release of the vessel. The request was denied. The vessel was ransomed for a record $6 million. (Source: Lloyd's List)

The Yemen Navy is offering anti-piracy  Read More 
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One Benefit to Somali Piracy

An AP article forwarded to me by Elana Langer, "Kenya Fishermen See Upside to Pirates: More Fish," points out that the threat of pirate attack has forced many foreign illegal fishing trawlers to seek other waters out  Read More 
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More Piracy News Tidbits

The Turkish ambassador to the UN has sent a letter suggesting that the UN oversee trials of accused Somali pirates. To date, the issue of arguments and questions over venue has been the most significant factor in preventing the trial of many accused Somali pirates. In many cases, some naval authorities have simply released captured Somali pirates. ( Read More 
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Recent Piracy News

Rear Adm. Terence "Terry" McKnight (USN, Ret.), past commander of Combined Maritime Forces (CMF) and Combined Task Force 151 (CTF-151) and veteran of joint anti-piracy operations, has criticized the media for dramatizing piracy at the expense of other world-wide naval operations, including those associated with the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. He further suggests, correctly,  Read More 
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The Arctic Sea Mystery

I’ve been meaning to post something on the mystery of the Arctic Sea, a cargo ship which was variously reported as missing, pirated, and perhaps secretly transporting Russian missiles off the coast of Europe last year. The story has all the trappings of a good spy novel, including cover stories, Russian  Read More 
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