Feb 13 2011
The head of shipping at Royal Dutch Shell has called on the Royal Navy to launch military action against new “pirate motherships” off Somalia that have captured two $200 million oil tankers this month and taken 700 hostages.
Why don’t they do what the Russians did, storm the hijacked ships, rescue the hostages, put all the ragtag raghead pirates on one boat and blow them to smithereens? These two bit pirates are holding the greatest Naval powers in the world hostage to political correctness. Sick.
UK TELEGRAPH — Jan Kopernicki, also the president of the British Chamber of Shipping (BCS), told The Sunday Telegraph that the problem had emerged in the past three to four months and was reaching a critical point with more than 700 sailors now held hostage.
Speaking on behalf of BSC members, he said international naval forces, including the Royal Navy, need to attack the giant floating bases, which have recently enabled pirates to threaten an area of the sea the size of the United States. “We urge governments to authorize their military to act on motherships,” he said.
A few pirates in dinghys can hijack a ship this size when it would be so easy to shoot them in the water
“Unless action is taken over the next few months, the pirates will take more and more ships and become more powerful. There is already evidence of brutalisation and starvation. However, we all recognize the ships are a sensitive target with hostages on board. It’s extremely delicate and difficult.”
Mr Kopernicki’s comments come just days after a 1,100-ft Greek supertanker carrying Kuwaiti oil to the US was seized by pirates off eastern Oman. The crude was reportedly bound for refineries owned by Valero and Marathon Oil. This was just one day after an Italian tanker was taken east of the Yemeni island of Socotra, in the Gulf of Aden.
Jack Lang, the UN Secretary-General’s special advisor on piracy, estimates that the threat of attacks costs the shipping industry and governments $7billion (£4.3bn) per year.
That’s right, send out the Navy to capture a half dozen pirates in a little motor boat.
The problem has severely escalated since the recent emergence of motherships – floating jails for hostages as well as operational bases. It means pirates can strike a wider area and carry on fighting all year round because the boats are monsoon-proof.
Increasing money from ransom payments, often covered by insurance costing the industry $4billion per year, means the pirates are well armed with AK47 machine guns and rocket-propelled grenade launchers.
“Pirates are industrialising. They talk about their investors. This is a business that’s going on.”
He said that in the past four months pirates had captured ships and converted them into motherships. “There are more than 10 of them now.”