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Old 01-03-2011, 08:43   #136
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Re: Danish Yacht Taken by Pirates

The simple solution is to have a ship or two from the International Piracy Patrols form up convoys of sailing vessels and escort them through these areas. There isn't a pirate in the world that would knowingly tangle with a well armed frigate, destroyer or a helicopter gunship assigned to them.

There would have to be certain rules for the members of the convoy, such as minimum speed, maintaining position in the convoy, no devations from course, etc. They would only have to run the convoys once or twice during the transit seasons. If any ship approaches within a specified distance of the convoy, it gets sunk, no questions asked.
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Old 01-03-2011, 09:32   #137
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Re: Danish Yacht Taken by Pirates

Do Insurance Companies consider this area an exclusion area? ie: your insurance is null and void if you are in this area and encounter problems.
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Old 01-03-2011, 09:37   #138
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Re: Danish Yacht Taken by Pirates

It took the British in WWI and the Americans in WWII some time to understand the power of an escorted convoy.

The key was not to avoid losing ships. The technology of the time allowed U-Boats to surface attack with torpedoes and frequently not be detected until the ship targeted exploded. The key was to make the U-Boats suffer for their actions by bracketing them with depth charges, shells through the conning tower, air attacks and driving them to "crush" depths.

Convoys, combined with better sonar, better pattern-running and better air cover/communications, had a radical effect on U-Boat victories, and being a German submariner soon became more deadly than being an infantryman on the Russian front.

Today, organizing a convoy should be easier. Getting it right will take some time. Like our forebears, we will have to ruthlessly exterminate all threats, including sinking motherships at every opportunity. Attacking a convoy is an act of war. The response is commensurate.

Appeasement doesn't work. Paying them means you pay them more the next time. History is a guide here. It's not about "revenge". It's about making it too expensive in blood and treasure for these people to continue. They will either turn inward and continue to destroy themselves, or perhaps the hotheads will die off and anyone who wants to live in peace will be given a voice. That's their concern. Ours is in keeping our people and our trade safe and free.
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Old 01-03-2011, 09:45   #139
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Re: Danish Yacht Taken by Pirates

Quote:
Originally Posted by Khagan1227 View Post
... If any ship approaches within a specified distance of the convoy, it gets sunk, no questions asked.
I certainly wouldn't sail in concert with any warship whose rules of engagement were sink w/out question.
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Old 01-03-2011, 09:51   #140
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Re: Danish Yacht Taken by Pirates

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I certainly wouldn't sail in concert with any warship whose rules of engagement were sink w/out question.
I imagine that would be one skipper who would have a tough time hiring a tug once he got into port.
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Old 01-03-2011, 09:51   #141
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Re: Danish Yacht Taken by Pirates

I haven't seen it posted so if I just missed it, sorry, here is the link to their blog.

ING jordenrundt.info

If you don't read Danish, you can download a translator that works well with Firefox. I don't know about the other browsers but.....

Be safe,be free
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Old 01-03-2011, 09:55   #142
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Re: Danish Yacht Taken by Pirates

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I certainly wouldn't sail in concert with any warship whose rules of engagement were sink w/out question.
Mr. May, what are your other options?

Warships make war. If I request escort from one, I accept that agenda. Irrespective of Somalia's root problems, pirates being piratical has many historical precedences and consequences. I am untroubled by the idea of the fate of a boatload of guys with RPGs and AK-47s. Fisherman, they are not.

If I decline the warship's presence on the grounds of personal morality, questions of legality or other considerations, my choices would seem to be "travel in unarmed, unescorted convoy", "travel alone" or "do not travel in the western Indian Ocean".

Are there possibilities I've missed?
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Old 01-03-2011, 10:09   #143
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Re: Danish Yacht Taken by Pirates

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I’ve seen a lot of discussion about the plight of the poor Somali’s: poor, uneducated, hungry, no jobs…… Much of which is true, but these people are not stupid. They have clearly evaluated western civilization and have decided that they can make a lot of money with no or little risk. This whole pirate thing is a business and nothing more. It’s not much different that the show Deadliest Catch. You get a bunch of investors to buy a boat and hire a crew of young men by giving them an opportunity to earn a lot of money in a very short period of time. As soon as the first boat catches a bunch of crab (or ships) and makes a small fortune, a whole lot more people invest in more boats and pretty soon you have a small fleet. Every year a couple of boats and crews are lost in the Bering Sea crab fisheries, but that doesn’t stop the fishery and killing pirates and sinking motherships will never stop the Somali pirate business, because there will always be young men willing to take the risk for a chance at a big reward. Currently there are pirate stock exchanges in several Somali cities in which local Somali’s can invest in pirate ventures. It’s a risk reward equation just like all businesses. There is virtually no risk to investors as long as western countries and businesses are willing to pay ransoms. They have decided that western countries are too civilized and humane to take any significant action. If I’m an investor and I invest $500 in a pirate venture, I’m at virtually no risk. If I live 5 miles from the pirate headquarters and the pirate activity pisses off a country even a cowboy country like the US, they will use precision weapons and may at most destroy a couple of buildings, but none near my house. Even if the pirates on occasion kill a couple of crews of pleasure yachts to punctuate their seriousness on the ransom demands for the current vessels and hostages I can count on western countries not to do anything that will endanger me or my family. These people may be uneducated but they are not stupid. They have correctly read the civilized world. As long as the serious risk is assumed by a few volunteers for the prospect of great rewards, there will never be a shortage of investors. The loss of a pirate ship or crew is simply the cost of doing business, just like the occasional loss of a crab boat in the Bering Sea. The only reason the investors will stop is if they believe that they are at serious risk. These investors are throughout the population and inseparable from the “innocent” Somalis. As long as western civilization is not willing to endanger the innocent, there will be no end to this.

During the cold War the US and USSR never got into a shooting war because they both had targeted their innocent civilian populations with nuclear weapons. Essentially holding each other’s innocent civilians as hostages against either side firing the fist shot. If it was clear that only the militaries were at risk, we probably would not survived. The Somali’s are doing what they’re doing because they have decided that they can take our people hostage and even kill them and the west will never put at risk anyone but the direct actors and we will never harm or take hostage any Somalis. They have absolutely no reason not to fire the first shot. I think the only solution is to hold Somalia, or at least the cities where these pirate operations are centered, hostage to the actions of these pirates, but the pirates have decided (probably correctly) that civilized western countries will never do that. As a consequence they are free to capture and even kill our innocents without ever putting their innocents at risk. As I said these people may be uneducated but are not stupid, but they have correctly deduced that we are educated, but stupid.

So to keep this on the sailing, the only alternative to protect cruisers is don’t go there. I don’t think disarming pirates will protect cruisers that have been disarmed already by their governments (citizen of the world view as most countries do not allow cruisers to carry weapons). While a lack of weapons may prevent them from successfully attacking a large commercial vessel, I seriously doubt that it would be that much trouble for a group of 19 pirates to overpower an unarmed crew of four cruisers even if the only weapon they had was their fists. Once they have the crew if approached by an armed vessel, they could kill the hostages with a kitchen knife probably taken from the vessel’s own galley. If the mother ships were in fact disarmed it would force pirates to go after softer targets (cruisers) putting us in even more jeopardy. Unfortunately this leaves the only safe solution is to not be anywhere near where these pirates are operating. Let’s just hope poor, uneducated people in countries all over the world aren’t as smart as the Somalis.
Interesting post and accurate. I agree the solution is sailors should not traverse the area and large shipping interests should never pay a ransom.
Your comments,

"These investors are throughout the population and inseparable from the innocent” Somalis. As long as western civilization is not willing to endanger the innocent, there will be no end to this.

During the cold War the US and USSR never got into a shooting war because they both had targeted their innocent civilian populations with nuclear weapons. Essentially holding each other’s innocent civilians as hostages against either side firing the fist shot. If it was clear that only the militaries were at risk, we probably would not survived."

is accurate.
If history has taught us anything it is that wars are won not by beating a military adversary but rather by targeting the adversaries civilian population causing an amount of death and destruction that becomes to costly for the people waging the war. Not a solution I want. But since the second world war the criminals and despots in the world realize we will no longer commit to this. There are elements in the world that see it as free reign for their enterprise. Good luck to those that choose to ignore the obvious and still set sail through that area. I suspect the non boating world, who is certainly the vast majority, are going to very soon tire of rescue attempts and escorts of people who willingly choose to take these chances.
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Old 01-03-2011, 10:11   #144
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Re: Danish Yacht Taken by Pirates

Seems they were fully aware of the dangers but maybe not aware of what happened to the Quest: The Canadian Press: Somali pirates says Danish hostages will be killed if attempt is made to rescue them



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Old 01-03-2011, 10:29   #145
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Re: Danish Yacht Taken by Pirates

How hard would it be to tell the pirates to release everyone within 48 hours and if they do not then start taking out their pirate vessels with anti-ship missiles one at a time until they realize that if they do not stop that they will eventually end up with nothing that floats? Give them 48 hours to take their pirate vessels back to port or continue to operate them at their own risk. At least this way they are given 48 hours to decide if they wish to live or die. They have internet...just send them an email from the White House.

All it would take is two AWACS aircraft to find their boats and one destroyer or carrier launched aircraft to deliver the missiles. We clearly have the technology but not the political will.

After this set up a blockade to inspect all vessels coming in or out of their ports for weapons. If they do not like this then too bad, they have already shown the world that their vessels need to be inspected. Set up the inspection program for five years. If they start committing piracy again then do the same thing again to stop them.

On top of that, set up a blockade to keep foreign fishing vessels out of their territorial waters so at least they have a chance at a subsistence type living. A little foreign aid in the form of education on how to grow legal edible crops and how to take better care of themselves would also be of help. At least they will not have to ask for ransoms in order to survive

In the long run, doing this will cost fewer lives and cost less money than if piracy is allowed to continue to exist. As a country and a people, Somalia will be better off as well.


Back to being a politically neutral, non-controversial mod with no strong opinions or convictions about anything.
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Old 01-03-2011, 10:58   #146
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Re: Danish Yacht Taken by Pirates

David, I'm not sure that it would be quite that easy to identify and take out only the pirate vessels; certainly in most cases it would require boarding prior to retaliation. A blockade, however, could be done and if the 'government' of Somalia see it as an act of war (and it is), so be it.

Invading the country is, however, something that would be a disaster, IMO. Apart from the inevitable cost to what little infrastructure they have, there would also be the inevitable loss of innocent civillians. The use of a blockade, however, would allow inspection of all vessels attempting to leave/enter an area close to shore and would effectively end the threat, at least while the blockade was in place.

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Old 01-03-2011, 11:13   #147
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Re: Danish Yacht Taken by Pirates

David M, I agree with your proposed solution. However, there are a few flies in the ointment. First, every insurance CEO would be demanding, whining and threatening their bought legislators to not put them at risk of big capital loss; and second, there would be likely a threat to the warships from black market anti-ship missiles. Neither fly represents an overwhelming obstacle, but just another weak spot in the political will.

Probably the most important attack on that lack of will, is the current threat to first world ships and citizens. Clearly, the strategy must now change to counter the change in the threat level. Yachties in danger alone, will probably not be sufficient to spur concerted action, but with kids now involved, and with the risk of piracy spreading as economic conditions deteriorate worldwide, action seems more likely than ever.

Plus, Bash has it right re the discussion of the issue here on CF. Cruisers, in my experience, are more likely to keep in touch via wifi with CF than listen intently to the news from back in the world.
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Old 01-03-2011, 11:16   #148
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Re: Danish Yacht Taken by Pirates

Quote:
Originally Posted by GordMay View Post
I certainly wouldn't sail in concert with any warship whose rules of engagement were sink w/out question.
My post was not a attempt to resolve this issue in a short e-mail, but rather to explain an option that, in my opinion, should be seriously considered.

I didn't think I would have to clearify this point, but here goes, just like with airplanes, sailing vessels and other ships can and do use transponders. All vessels that are a part of a convoy would be issued a transponder to allow the escort to keep tabs on them. Any OTHER ship that tries to enter the convoy without permission from the escort is warned before it enters the protective zone, if it ignores the warning, it is either driven off or sunk, no questions asked. I think everyone on this board understands that if the pirates get on board a boat, then it is too late to act. Once aboard the vessel, it becomes a hostage situation and the military becomes helpless unless the hostages are released or killed.

The U.S. Navy already uses protective zones around it's ships and battle groups. Any airplane or vessel that approaches is warned off, the ship can and has fired upon the intruder. Sadly, this has resulted in a civilian aircraft being shot down because the pilot refuse to change course to avoid a direct approach on a Navy vessel, which the Navy vessel mistook to be an attack run. On the other hand, the pirates don't use aircraft to attack sailing vessels, so there should be PLENTY of time to warn another vessel off before firing on it.
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Old 01-03-2011, 11:22   #149
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Re: Danish Yacht Taken by Pirates

To the end that this thread has strayed from news about a boat being taken into "how do we solve the piracy issue" and other, more political things it is asked that the thread stay on the topic of the Danish yacht.

Cruisers Forum can help advise people to not sail in dangerous waters, we will not solve the issue here.
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Old 01-03-2011, 12:25   #150
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Re: Danish Yacht Taken by Pirates

More details, Pirate Says Danish Hostages Will Be Killed if Rescue Attempted
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