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October 29, 2007

Millions For Defense, But Not One Cent For Tribute!

Okay, they aren’t Barbary Pirates but still…pirates.

A U.S. Navy warship fired on and sank two skiffs used by pirates Sunday to hijack a merchant vessel off the coast of Somalia, U.S. officials said Monday.

The USS Porter responded to a distress call from the merchant vessel carrying benzene, the officials said. Sunday's shooting took place in international waters, they said.

At the request of Somalia's government, a second U.S. warship, the destroyer USS Arleigh Burke, is now shadowing the merchant ship inside Somali waters, the officials said.

Coincidently, the U.S.S. Porter is named after Commodore David Porter, and his son, Admiral David Dixon Porter. Porter the elder served in the Barbary Wars.

Awww...[Ace]: I was just about to put this up. Oh well, here's the previous story, about the pirates seizing a Japanese tanker.

Somali pirates have hijacked a Japanese-owned chemical tanker in the latest such seizure in the Horn of Africa nation's notoriously lawless waters, a regional maritime official and a piracy watchdog said on Monday.

Andrew Mwangura, head of the East African Seafarers' Assistance Programme, said shipping sources in both Somalia and Japan had confirmed the vessel was seized eight nautical miles offshore on Sunday morning.

"We are trying to establish what demands they have, and how many people were on board," Mwangura told Reuters by telephone from the Kenyan port city of Mombasa.

"There are five well-organized pirate groups operating in Somali waters. We know the one which took this boat," he said.

...

"She has been taken into Somali waters, and we haven't heard anything from her since," the official said.

Quoting an IMB official, Japanese news agency Kyodo said the tanker had 23 non-Japanese crew on board, made up of its South Korean captain and South Korean, Filipino and Myanmar nationals.


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posted by DrewM. at 06:34 PM

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