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April 08, 2009

Maersk Alabama Hijacking Update

Update to the update:

Good new and bad news....

First, the good news: The US Navy is on the scene so the pirates options have shrunk considerably.

The bad news: John Kerry is also on the case.

U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman John Kerry said a thorough policy debate on piracy off Somalia is long overdue.

"I plan to hold hearings to further examine the growing threat of piracy and all the policy options that need to be on the table before the next fire drill becomes an international incident with big implications," Kerry said in a statement.

Translation, "Sure I could have done this at anytime in the last two years but now there's publicity involved. I haven't gotten much air time after getting beat out by Hillary to run State, so hows bout we show John F. Kerry a little nightly news and Sunday talk show lovein'?"

Original Post:

Obviously this is an on going situation and there's a lot of confusion as to what happen and when. Right now the crew has control of the ship but the captain is still being held hostage by the pirates.

The crew had a plan to make an exchange for their captain.

"We had a pirate we took and kept him for 12 hours," Quinn said. "We tied him up and he was our prisoner."

The crew gave back their prisoner but the pirates reneged on the plan and are continuing to hold Phillips captive.

The pirates with the captain then took the ship's 28 foot lifeboat but didn't get very far because it wasn't fueled.

Meanwhile, the USS Bainbridge* is on its way to the scene.

For some background on the issues surrounding modern day piracy off Africa check out the outstanding naval blog Information Dissemination or the recent discussion of what merchant crews can do to defend themselves at the USNI blog.

Meanwhile prayers are in order for Captain Richard Phillips and his family.


*Historical fun fact: The USS Bainbridge is named in honor of William Bainbridge, who had some, um, misfortunes during the Barbary Wars, though he later made up for them during the War of 1812.


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posted by DrewM. at 05:59 PM

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