the situation is the traditional way -- with violence. Merchant ships and their crews should be armed. Sailors should get some training fighting. There should be shipping
lanes defined where boats must not approach ships within a certain distance, and where ships have the right to fire upon these boats if they do approach and ignore warnings.
Contrary to what some posters have written, it is the pirates who cannot win the arms race
. The pirates presently carry AK47's and RPG's on RIBs or small fishing
boats. A mounted 50 caliber machine gun, with an effective range of 1800 meters, will easily deal with this kind of threat. It's not a race
of arms, but a race of will, where the pirates so far have an overwhelming advantage.
In this race of wills, it is interesting to note Obama's instructions to the Navy
in this recent case: use force only if the captain's life is in imminent danger
. Say again? Armed pirates take over an American ship at gunpoint, take a hostage, and there are American military forces on the scene, but they are not supposed to use force?! This is ridiculous; and this mentality is what creates the problem in the first place.
There was another thread here on piracy, where it was debated whether or not we should admire the pirates for their boldness. Well of course we should admire them. They have figured out our weak point, and they go out in tiny boats and stop huge ships, and make millions of dollars. This is stupendous; I have tremendous respect for the sheer guts and imagination this takes. But that doesn't mean that we shouldn't blow them out of the water!