Thursday, January 12, 2012

Pirates fail their RECCE quiz ... again


They are real lucky they didn't try this on a US, Chinese or Russian warship.
At first light on 12 January 2012, having just completed the escort of a World Food Programme ship carrying food-aid into Somalia and while operating close to the Somali port of Mogadishu, the EU NAVFOR Flagship, the ESPS PATINO, was approached by one skiff with a group of suspected pirates onboard.

The suspected pirates opened fire with light calibre weapons and tried to board the PATINO. The ship’s force-protection team returned fire in self-defense and the ship’s helicopter was launched.

The skiff broke off the attack and the men surrendered to the helicopter after throwing their weapons, ladder and fuel barrels overboard.Five of the six men who were in the skiff had received injuries, two of which required medical treatment onboard the SPS PATINO.

38 comments:

ewok40k said...

definitely Darwin awards seekers - though they have been denied even that booty... :-P

Navy Grade 36 Bureaucrat said...

I still find it funny that a skiff rolling up alongside a warship, openning fire on it, and then surrendering, is full of "suspected" pirates.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Ain't it the truth.

They should be on a gibbet in Mogadishu, with a little Union Jack tied each of their dangling legs.

LT Rusty said...

Play stupid games, win stupid prizes.

LT B said...

That's what happens when you start taking pirates to court rather than following the tried and true LEGAL precedence of killing them as soon as they start shooting at you.  If you are Somali, you get your skiff near a US ship, fire off a round, surrender immediately and get a free trip to NY w/ 3 hots and a cot, but no khat.  So you eat better, get better medical, and get a drug interdiction program.  I wonder how long it takes before you get released into the US proper after being in prison in the US.

John said...

Dang it, ships crews really need to improve their marksmanship skills.  There is absolutely no excuse for there being ANY survivors in an encounter like this.

If this is how P-poor ships are at defending themselves, what would be the result with an Iranian suicide boghammer making a run on one of our combatants or auxilaries? 

None of this "warning shot" crap- just shoot to kill and keep shooting until the threat is eliminated (not just neutralized).  This is a lesson we need to learn and implement now, not wait until after USS ___________ is sunk by some radical/pirate in a skiff with a big bomb.

Yeah, I realize is was not our ship, but a Spanish one, but the lessons to be learned apply to us as well as those most recently attacked.

By the way, why is anyone bothering to escort food shipments into Somali waters anyway.  Tell the nominal "government" there to control their population or starve.  Let us know when it is safe, if you want to eat.

Someone_Blogged said...

Don't know where you get the "shoot until neutralized" - we shoot until the threat is no longer a threat.

DeltaBravo said...

Playing in pirate waters could be useful.... how many rescued Iranian fisherman can you trade for one former-Marine sitting Evan Prison with a death sentence hanging over his head?

ewok40k said...

none, as Iran leadership doesnt care about it's citizens the way US (sometimes) does...

Wstr said...

You have to be a little careful if taking fire when stopping a mothership, due to the chances of hostage crew still being onboard to operate the vessel, but armed skiffs contain only pirates should be engaged whenever found. As the old saying goes: Big Boys' Games - Big Boys' Rules.

Wstr said...

3/4'' inch hemp neckties need to be this season's must have accessory for the fashionable pirate.

chief torpedoman said...

Perhaps, they should just have lowered a pilots ladder for the pirates to board and then let them drown when they fell.
Sorry, couldn't resist.

MR T's Haircut said...

hmm, me thinks i see a tactic procedure here, ala the German Raiders of WW2... send int he dteroit and the Arctic loaded with Seals.. a nice big juicy trojan boat

MR T's Haircut said...

The Bird says NO....

C-dore 14 said...

I don't know..."neutralized" is a perfectly good euphemism.  A few years back my son in law was decorated for an incident in which his Marines "neutralized" a group of Iraqis who attacked their convoy.  According to him none of the "neutralized" walked away from the encounter. 

AW1 Tim said...

If they are alive, they are still a threat. Shoot the bastards and be done with it. Prove to them that the wages of piracy is death without remorse.

Adversus Omnes Dissident said...

Bird is the word.

Adversus Omnes Dissident said...

Still don't understand why we don't just summarily execute pirates.

Mike M. said...

Q-ships.  They work 4.0 for this sort of thing.

Redeye80 said...

You are kidding right??

Right now four Marines in the eye of a sh$t storm for pi$$ing on some dead Tallies and you think we can get away with turning a boat load of dumb a$$ recreational, sight seeing, pirates into pink mist.

Welcome to the pussification of this great nation.  The Main Occupier of the White House would never allow it.

Adversus Omnes Dissident said...

No, I'm not kidding.  Do you think that the Chinese are repatriating pirates to Somalia?  How about the Russians?  In case anyone is wondering, there is a great couple of videos of Russian sailors obliterating pirate boats.

As for the Marines pissing on dead Taliban corpses, WTF-ever.  Discipline issue.  But instead, our puss-in-chief and Leon the Hatchet along with Secretary Clinton are going to embark on an America Sucks Apology World Tour.  Where was the outrage when Nicholas Berg and Daniel Pearl were beheaded?  Where was the outrage when 101st Airborne members were drawn and quartered?  Where was the outrage when Afghan girls were douched with acid for wanting to go to school?  Where was the outrage a week ago when 80 Iraqis were killed in simultaneous car bombings?

Grandpa Bluewater said...

Pirates are criminals. If they resist deadly force is authorized. Should they clearly surrender, they are to be taken prisoner and delivered to a court for trial as specified by law and regulations. Naval personnel are bound by oath to obey all lawful orders and to issue no unlawful ones.

Investigate and apprehend. Preserve and document evidence of the crime. Provide a speedy trial. Punish if convicted.

It's a Navy.  Not a lynch mob or a vigilence commitee.

Provide a fair trial, then hang the guilty bastards. Perform all steps in the order specified.

ewok40k said...

Bad thing is, courts in the US dont tend to hang anyone but most brutal killers - and contrary to popular image, pirates don't kill a lot of people... bad for business, you know. If merchant crews were likely to die they would stop surrendering or, perish the thought, arm themselves and start shooting back. And EU courts are without death penalty at all. And I would prefer US or European prison over living in the streets of Mogadishu, anyday. You know ,matter of life expectancy.

Redeye80 said...

I think you guys missed my point, 

This administration doesn't have the cajones to effectively deal with the pirates.  I think if the pirates knew thier activities had deadly consequences they might seek other forms of employment.

BTW if you are going to quote Rep. West, give the man credit.

Grandpa Bluewater said...

Discipline and professionalism is more important than plinking raggety drawered pirates after they have thrown down their weapons and thrown up their hands.

The judiciary are in a seperate coequal branch of the government and beyond the control of folks who work in the executive branch (to wit: the Navy).

Yes, they often are suboptimal. When the Navy attains perfection and then (somewhat later) so does the Marine Corps and Coast Guard, there still is the Army and the (shudder) Air Force to remediate.  

The judiciary is a swamp too far - in this life at least. 

ewok40k said...

repairing government, one branch at a time? not bad idea, not bad at all...

pk said...

aaaaah but the milage we could get on the theme: If the iranians are such big bad military types why can't they rescue their fishermen that are in trouble or suppress pirates off of their coasts.

C

Adversus Omnes Dissident said...

Grandpa Bluewater:  Sir, piracy is not a crime, and we are not law enforcement officers.  We do not collect evidence.  Piracy is a scourge and its unlawful combatants are eligible for summary execution under existing international laws and conventions.  It is not a crime, and its perps have no right to counsel or due process.

You mean to tell me that these men have more rights than an American citizen accused of being affiliated--or desiring to be affiliated--with al Qaeda?

Adversus Omnes Dissident said...

Um, I posted my own thoughts on Facebook before Rep West's office released his thoughts.

So no, original thoughts, I'll keep my own credit thank you very much.

Adversus Omnes Dissident said...

If these men are strictly criminals, then why did we send a destroyer to conduct naval gunfire along the somali coast?  Wouldn't that be a violation of due process?

Grandpa Bluewater said...

By international law, in the form of a treaty ratified by the Congress and signed by the President, piracy is crime on the high seas. Not guerilla warfare, or warfare at all. The Constitution requires Congress to maintain a Navy for various tasks specified, including the suppression of piracy.

Pirates are dealt with under the laws of the nation state of the vessel which encounters them. Russian rights?
Mmm, kya good bye.

All naval officers are responsible preserve and document evidence for offenses against miliary law, maritime law and situations when civilians under martial law.  It is one of the purposes of the ship's Deck and Engineering logs.

Under international law, mariners in distress MUST be aided. If getting pirates to throw down their arms and surrender, fine.  If pirates want to fight to the death, fine.

So quick and dirty, the facts are not what you presume.  A JAG or Admiralty experience lawyer can supply the chapter and verse, so over to the pros from Dover on that.

Engaging insurgents on land? Pirates are on the sea. Different chapter, different rule book.

No need to be bloodthirsty. Just police 'em up.

C-dore 14 said...

You guys might be interested in hearing that even during the "Golden Age of Pirates" in the early to mid 1700s, the Royal Navy didn't summarily execute captured pirates.  While they certainly killed their share while taking their vessels, they took a good percentage to a local authority or back to England for trial.  Granted, most were hanged, "washed" in the Thames, and hung in chains; but a percentage were also sent to prison or exonerated.  Richard Zach's book, <span>The Pirate Hunter</span>, is an interesting read on the subject. 

SCOTTtheBADGER said...

Where is the second ENTERPRISE when you need her?  "Lucky Little Enterprise", a Sloop of War, destroyed 48 pirate vessels in the early 19th century.  Since we once had serving at the same time 3 DDs with almost the same name, USS BADGER, USS GEORGE BADGER, and USS CHARLES BADGER, all three of which were at Okinawa, I don't see why we can't have a CVN named ENTERPRISE, and then buy a SKJOLD from the Norskies, name her LITTLE ENTERPRISE, and turn her loose on the pirates. We leased SKJOLD herself for a year to assess her. When we had her, she had a MK75 76mm gun, Harpoons, and machine guns.  A group of SKJOLDs, ( LITTLE ENTERPRISE Class?), would cost less than less than probably even one Little Coffin Ship, yet would be more capable, faster, and have the added benefit of being built to warship standards. 

Pirates are "latroncunae" enemies of all mankind, so by long atanding international custom, you can do what you want with them, when you catch them, but it's always best to do things the right way, and have a trail, because that is one o fthe differences between us then them, we DO have a set of rules that we live by.

The low pressrue WHUMP WHUMP WHUMP of helo rotors attract sharks like you wouldn't believe, so while I like the idea of a USN SKJOLD roaring up  on a pirate skiff, and letting fly with the MK75, while a transducer mounted on one of the hydrofoil fins plays the sounds of Chinooks into the sea, I guess in the long run we would be making our point better to catch them, try them, and THEN execute them.  But , on the other hand, it would provide employment for the impoverished IO Oceanic Whitetip community.

SCOTTtheBADGER said...

Here in WI, we LE types shoot to stop. We fire until you have stopped being a threat. I carry a HK USP45F loaded with Winchester Silvertip hollowpoints, which should do the job, even on werewolves.

Acquisition Mark said...

Somalia piracy is an estimated $8.3B hit (2010) to the world ecomomy according to Spiegel Online.  We have gone to war for less.  We have satellites, UAVs, Intel, and warships ready to go in harms way.  This should be a no-brainer.

Adversus Omnes Dissident said...

AOD will now retreat to his corner after being dispatched with by the MEGA POWERS: C-Dore 14 and Grandpa Bluewater.

Sigh...

Every once in a while the young bucks have to get into the rut.  And then once bloddied, retreat to their corner of the front porch to lick their wounds...

Adversus Omnes Dissident said...

Not always.  We can continue this on the high side......

Grandpa Bluewater said...

Circle. Recline. Yawn. Scratch. Close Eyes. ZZZzzzz.