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Piracy News & Commentary

Pirate Hunting Cruise Hoax

The Internet continues to abound with articles on Russian pirate hunting cruises, in which passengers purportedly pay for the chance at shooting pirates at sea. On its face any clear-headed reader should have assumed any such article to be merely repeating a hoax--which indeed the pirate hunting cruises are. Nonetheless, the articles continue to circulate and, given  Read More 
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Marines Recapture Ship from Pirates

A Bravo Zulu to US Marines of the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit's Maritime Raid Force who recaptured the German-owned Magellan Star. The Marines captured nine suspected pirates. Not a shot was fired, and the ship's crew was unharmed. The Marines are deployed aboard the amphibious ship USS Dubuque (LPD 8). The  Read More 
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Piracy Charges Dropped

Piracy charges have been dropped against six Somalis who attacked the USS Ashland in April 2010. Under US law, a pirate is a sea thief. If he "merely" attempts piracy, he is not a pirate. However, in the popular mind and historical tradition, not to mention to my own mind, a pirate is  Read More 
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No Kidding

Several recent articles in various newspapers and industry journals have pointed out that Somali pirates are adapting their tactics. No kidding. Tactics invariably evolve, and both shipowners and navies need to be prepared for this.
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The Definition of Piracy

Good Wall Street Journal article on the problems arising from the definitions of piracy. (Article forwarded by Shaun Chittick.)
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Unions Support Arming Ships Against Pirates

According to Lloyd's List, seafarer unions now support the arming of merchant vessels with armed military personnel when transiting piracy-prone areas. The unions still oppose arming seafarers themselves.
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Pirates Sentenced

Lloyd's List has reported that twenty pirates were recently tried in Kenya and sentenced to twenty years apiece. An estimated four hundred suspected pirates are being held worldwide for trial.
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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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