Europe is coming! Europe is coming!
QUESTION: Why doesn’t this deter pirates (or pretty much anyone)?
An international armada was preparing to head towards the Somali coast yesterday as the stand-off with pirates holding a Ukrainian ship to ransom threatened to escalate.
Amid warnings that an effective blockade by the pirates could spark a famine in the Horn of Africa, European Union defence ministers meeting in Paris agreed to set up a naval taskforce to tackle the threat.
Two Royal Navy frigates, HMS Chatham and HMS Lancaster, are already in the region and could join the proposed fleet.
The pirates who seized the Ukrainian cargo ship MV Faina were in defiant mood yesterday, vowing to fight if there was an attempt to rescue the crew of 20. They also said that they were only prepared to hand over the cargo of tanks and weapons in return for a ransom of £11 million.
“Anyone who tries to attack us or deceive us will face bad repercussions,” Sugule Ali, a spokesman for the pirates, told the Associated Press in a satellite telephone interview. The vessel is surrounded by half a dozen American warships but no moves have been made to board it.
Let’s negotiate with criminals — this way, they get the loot they wanted, and the Europeans get the peace panacea they believe in. Obama’s way of doing things on display.
What a crock!
What about the Iranian ship they hijacked a few days before they hijacked this ship? You know, the one where the pirates’ hair was falling out and had blisters on their skin. A clear sign of chemical weapons. They are using this ship to divert attention from the other one. Where is this ship now? Did Iran retrieve this ship? That is definitely more newsworthy than pirates hijacking a ship with Russion tanks but we hear chrickets chirping.
Actually Barbara, those symptoms sound more like radiation poisoning. Now why would a cargo ship with false documents from Iran be loaded with radioactive materials???
As for the Russians, they have learned their lessons and are sending a warship with the next load of illegal arms they bought from the Ukraine and are shipping to African nations.
Barbara, no word on that ship. I’ve been looking long and hard, and it seems like even the obscure media is getting nothing-not even rumors. It’s like the ship just disappeared. I guess we can draw our own conclusions from that? I dunno, but it seems odd to me that after literally YEARS of seeing the Somali pirates run rampant, only now is the US sending ships to really face them down and Europe and Russia as well Is it because of a single ship w weapons on it, or perhaps because of the Iranian ship or because there’s a rise in piracy there (albeit slight rise imo)? Dunno. My money’s on the Iranian ship.
I have been scouring the internet for updates on the Iranian Deyanat with the supposed cache of nuclear material. Virtually silent. Something is really wrong here. Either this whole thing was fabricated by some guy named Andrew M…. who has been a negotiator between the Somali pirates and ship owners in the past, or there is a massive coverup underway. Here is my lame attempt at connecting the dots:
If these pirates were exposed to radiation and died, then here are just a few questions:
1) Could thesebe the “non-existant WMD’s” that Saddam may have shipped to China before the invasion? If so, where were they heading? Iran? Europe? Or just close enough to Isreal (Suez Canal) to make a big boom?
2) Is it possible that there are other ships containing nuclear material? Possible ready-made dirty bombs that could be detonated in European and US ports?
3) Could AQ use this as a bluff, a threat, to make demands like withdrawal from Iraq/Afghanistan?
4) Is the Russian warship headed to the region for this reason, not for the 30 tanks on the other ship? What about those other Russian ships supposedly headed to S. America, and are now (I think) located off the coast of Tripoli?
5) How will Israel respond to this? A pre-emptive strike on Iran? If so, what will Russia do?
6) Could this incident be related to the sudden financial crisis? One week after the Somali pirates die, suddenly congress has to act swiftly to prop up the markets…could this be a pre-emptive measure to do something before a major conflict erupts…or worse?
I know I’m getting the cart WAY before the horse here. But things could dramatically change overnight if there truly are nukes aboard this vessel.
One last interesting tidbit. I read on another blog, one operated by a retired Naval guy. One comment was made that the vessel was supposedly carrying iron ore from China to Rotterdam. He researched this and found that China imports ore, it does not export it. I can’t verify this, but it is an interesting note.
One theory here: http://www.tbrnews.org/Archives/a2880.htm#002 Although American intelligence and government sources are maintaining a strictly observed silence, the same does not apply to the Russians and so it is that we learn the real story of the MV Iran Deyanat. She was an enormous floating dirty bomb, intended to detonate after exiting the Suez Canal at the eastern end of the Mediterranean and in proximity to the coastal cities of Israel. The entire cargo of radioactive sand, obtained by Iran from China (the latter buys desperately needed oil from the former) and sealed in containers which, when the charges on the ship are set off after the crew took to the boats, will be blasted high into the air where prevailing winds will push the highly dangerous and radioactive cloud ashore.
Given the large number of deaths from the questing Somali pirates, it should be obvious that when the contents of the ship’s locked cargo containers finally descended onto the land, the death toll would be enormous. This ship was nothing more nor less than the long-anticipated Iranian attack on Israel. Not the expected rocket attacks (which could be interdicted by the Israelis) but even more deadly and unexpected attack by sea.. It is very interesting to note that the Israeli government has in the past few weeks, been loudly demanding that the United States establish a naval blockade of Iran.
The reason for this blockade would be to prevent any more Iranian ships with deadly cargos from attacking either Israel or other targets from the sea.
The US Navy has been there for years, just not reported on. 22,000 ships pass the area every year and 99% have no incidences. This problem is that the pirates and see a Navy ship from a long ways off. In the age of sails, it was difficult to tell a Navy ship from a Merchant until the gun ports opened up (though at the time, merchants were also allowed to be armed). There is also an international task force near Indonesia. Lots of area with safe havens for pirates that the TF cannot attack and Merchant Captains too eager to shave a few dollars off fuel and time costs who skirt the coasts.
The pirates DID try to attack a USN cargo ship (the USNS Arctic I believe) a year ago, but the Arctic is a registered Naval ship and has license to use off-board offensive weapons. Needless to say it was a one sided, short fight which left the Arctic the victor. One of our two hospital ships on a mercy mission, however, was not as lucky and was boarded. Now we keep them tight inside TFs and are using armed Landing ships for these missions.
In the Iranian and Ukrainian ship instances, I would also hypothesize that these “civilian merchant” ships were deliberately avoiding the anti-piracy TF. When looking at successful pirate attacks, this seems to be the case. Ships hauling illegal cargo and avoiding the TF are easily hit and their sponsors are eager to pay off the pirates to avoid international entanglements we see now. Erick’s observations are probably too close for comfort on many points though I would replace AQ with Iran.
Iran, under their Maadi worshiping tyrant, is attempting to position itself as the “true defender of Islam”. An attack with a dirty bomb or a true nuclear bomb aboard a false flagged cargo ship may position Iran as the Islamic country who actually “did something”.
Here is one of the few stories I have found on this:
Thanks Chris. Yeah, I’m aware that the USN is all over the area. This was pointed out as well in both the Iranian hijacked ship original article as well as the one re the Ukrainian ship. Other western navies are all over the Indian Ocean, Arabian Sea, Red Sea etc as well. I think what might be different now is that all of the above are focusing more assets on the Somali pirates. It’s important as well because of the Kenya/Sudan/Ethiopia/Eritrea facets and the new African Command that the DoD is forming.
Chris G and Scott,
Everyone is talking about the Ukranian Faina with the tanks. Russia’s warship is supposedly heading there right now because of it http://www.moscowtimes.ru/article/1010/42/371447.htm
….again no mention at all of the Iranian ship. Why?
I just found an article stating that the Russian warship was going to head to the region to deal with the Somali pirates….but it’s dated BEFORE the Faina was even hijacked! http://www.lloydslist.com/ll/news/russia-sends-naval-vessels-to-somali-waters/20017573576.htm
That means the Russia needed to get down there because of the Iranian ship. Again…why?
The guy who intitally stated the death of the pirates, blisters and hair falling out was arrested in Kenya (because he mentioned the weapons on the Faina were headed to southern Sudan) The US later backed up his statement. I’ve been on ATS and there’s someone posting there tearing this guy down and telling everyone to ignore it. that it was bad info. I find this all very curious indeed.
apparently the Kenyan official who was passing on info re the pirates has been arrested. Hopefully we’ll get some more on the Iranian ship soon.
The radioactive stuff in the ship’s holds sound like the leftovers from plutonium production. The US has 76 tanks worth of this stuff from the Manhattan Project. We’re going to turn it into glass and bury it at Yucca Mountain. It can be in the form of insoluble salts of strontium-90, cesium-137, and the like.
The Chinese have tons of this stuff too but a more likely source is North Korea. Their weapon program used a plutonium production reactor and so they had to cut up the uranium targets and dissolve in nitric acid.
This is a very effective dirty bomb, extremely clever.
Now whoever holds this ship has the problem of how to dispose of the radioactive materials. One could just sink it in a deep part of the ocean where there are no currents. Sure hope it doesn’t come to America but we could handle it at a plant we’re building in Richland, Washington. Getting it there safely is a big task though.