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 Post subject: Easter SEALs
PostPosted: Tue 14 Apr , 2009 12:26 am 
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Just soliciting thoughts on the Maersk Alabama affair, Captain Phillips' rescue, and the problem of Somali piracy generally.

As for me: Pompey and Caesar got it right, as did Jefferson and Madison. The first and nearly only military operation conducted independently by the Government of Virginia was the fitting out of two armed sloops in 1718, to hunt down the notorious Edward Teach (Blackbeard). Lt. Maynard's Ranger returned to Hampton Roads with Teach's head hanging from the bowsprit.

The Geneva Convention on the High Seas (1958) wrote:
Article 19

On the high seas, or in any other place outside the jurisdiction of any
State, every State may seize a pirate ship or aircraft, or a ship taken by
piracy and under the control of pirates, and arrest the persons and seize
the property on board. The courts of the State which carried out the
seizure may decide upon the penalties to be imposed

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 Post subject: Re: Easter SEALs
PostPosted: Tue 14 Apr , 2009 1:02 am 
bioalchemist
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The rest of the pirates are swearing revenge. I suppose that is not surprising. What bemuses me is how shocked and hurt the pirate who threatened revenge sounded. I mean, isn't getting shot and killed an occupational hazard for pirates?

The other concern is what this is going to mean for other hostages being held by Somali pirates. But really, this was an impossible situation. The commander at the scene had reason to believe our hostage was going to get killed so they did what they were authorized to do under those circumstances. If they had not acted, what then? And what sort of message would that have sent?

Also, I would have liked to have been a fly on the wall when that ship captain traded himself for his crew and his freighter. Seriously. Just attempting that trade took guts and/or a deep sense of duty; that he actually convinced the pirates that he was worth more all by himself on a lifeboat than his entire crew and cargo all put together is all the more impressive (though I'm sure it helped that the pirates themselves were pretty green). And then he tried to escape...

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 Post subject: Re: Easter SEALs
PostPosted: Tue 14 Apr , 2009 1:12 am 
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I wouldn't have minded being a fly on the bulkhead on Bainbridge' bridge when Castellano took the initiative under the Standing Orders to act.

(Incidentally, between a ship and an inflatable in choppy seas in the dark, three head shots is freakin' amazing. Those SEALs are to marksmanship what LeBron James is to basketball- capable of feats ordinary humans only dream of.)

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 Post subject: Re: Easter SEALs
PostPosted: Tue 14 Apr , 2009 3:05 am 
Insolent Pup
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The Captain deserves any and all marks for bravery, as do the crew for retaking the ship.

I'm not surprised that the pirates are swearing revenge, but what do they expect our government to do? Pay ransom? If I were Congress, I'd be issuing letters of mark to any ship that wants to hunt pirates. It is hilarious to see pirates claiming some kind of moral outrage at the death of their brethren. You are pirates... get it.

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 Post subject: Re: Easter SEALs
PostPosted: Tue 14 Apr , 2009 3:18 am 
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The Obama administration deserves much praise for the very patient way they handled this. It certainly answered any questions about their ability in the area of defense and security concerns. President Obama seems to have taken a page from the playbook of Prsident Theodore Roosevelt who is famous for his "speak softly and carry a big stick" tactics.

It is sad that some folks simply cannot give proper credit to the President because of their own idealogical blindness.

I was laughing today when I heard the first ten minutes of Rush Limbaughs show. He had the nerve to criticize President Obama and compared the Aomalian pirates to the members of Acorn in Chicago. Limbaugh said it was hypocritical of Obama to attack the pirates while letting their domestic equals - ACORN - loot Americans. It deserves to be heard by every American.

Stuff from the nutty Right like this simply exposes the absolute sillyness of the personalities who dominate it.

To hear and read how pathetic it is

http://www.rushlimbaugh.com/home/daily/ ... guest.html" target="_blank" target="_blank

and more from the folks at FOX who took time out from the teabagging plans

http://www.dailykostv.com/w/001151/" target="_blank

they certainly have lots of egg on their face today.

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 Post subject: Re: Easter SEALs
PostPosted: Tue 14 Apr , 2009 3:47 am 
bioalchemist
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TheEllipticalDisillusion wrote:
It is hilarious to see pirates claiming some kind of moral outrage at the death of their brethren. You are pirates... get it.

That about sums up how I feel about the pirates' response. Yeesh. Don't like the heat, get out of the kitchen. :roll:

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 Post subject: Re: Easter SEALs
PostPosted: Tue 14 Apr , 2009 1:41 pm 
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Of course, over on HuffPo and Kos we're already seeing articles about how these pirates are actually the victims, some sort of 'environmental liberation movement,' or, at worst, naifs forced into a life of crime by their Evil White Man-created poverty.

Just imagine how the press would have spun this had Bush still been president!

NAVY GUNS DOWN BLACK YOUTHS ON BUSH'S ORDERS

<Satire follows>

Quote:
The War on Terror’s Fresh, New Face - NY Times

Somalia - Glassy-eyed from lack of sleep and food, the four Somali pirates were barely able to hold their weapons up as sharpshooters took aim at their amydylas. Some of those involved in the operation questioned the President’s approach. “They weren’t a threat to this ship” one soldier said on condition of anonymity, “I think we could have resolved this without firing on them.”

Killing Pirates Only Adds to Their Ranks - Huffington Post

President Bush has never lacked for decisiveness, nor has he been shy about rattling sabers or in this case actually taking one out to execute seventeen and eighteen year-old pirates. But experts remain concerned that, however popular such decisive action may be with a narrow band of the President’s supporters, they will likely prompt an equally impassioned reprisal. Already there is evidence that pirate ranks are swelling with newly embittered adversaries.

Number One with a Bullet - Maureen Dowd

Somewhere in an dark, undisclosed location Darth Cheney is laughing his ass off. This is what we’ve come to…”Bush-whacking” is no longer a snarky sentiment bandied about America’s editorial pages, it is now official government policy.

Mother of 17 Year Old Pirate Wants Justice - LA Times

While Republicans in Congress were quick to lionize the President’s decisive handling of the crisis, not everyone was rejoicing. Abdi Dalmar is the mother of one of the young men executed yesterday. “Why would they do this?! My son loved America.”

Sarah Palin Says Pirates Got What they Deserved - CBS News

In the latest possible misstep for her future political career, Sarah Palin indicated her support for President Bush’s handling of the standoff. “I think the President did what needed to be done…in Somalia. We can’t allow this sort of piracy to continue unchecked.” But some members of Palin’s own party were questioning the move…

Special Comment - Keith Olbermann

Is there no low to which you will not stoop? It’s a rhetorical question — and for Mr. Bush let me be clear — that’s a question we already know the answer to. In fact we know it all too well. You, sir, are now literally asking our military to shoot teenagers in the back of the skull as part of your policy of endless war. We’re not even at war with Somalia! But I suppose this is the price of distracting America from your legion of failed policies. Fascist doesn’t even begin to cover it! There are Nazi prison guards who would be reduced to tears by your unbridled brutality, sir!

Real Time monologue - Bill Maher

So, President Bush today renewed his opposition to the S-Chip program. He said that he will be proposing an alternative program to Congress shortly. Yeah, I think we saw that one in action in Somalia already Mr. President. That’s one way to balance the budget. Just shoot the sick kids.


H/T to http://www.verumserum.com/?p=4611" target="_blank" target="_blank

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Last edited by solicitr on Tue 14 Apr , 2009 1:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Easter SEALs
PostPosted: Tue 14 Apr , 2009 1:46 pm 
of Vinyamar
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Soli. You might want to clarify that post. Initially thought those were genuine news story responses fropm a couple of years ago, then that they were current ones you had doctored. Not sure what point you think your making, but false quotation seems to be your style lately, and its not appreciated.

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 Post subject: Re: Easter SEALs
PostPosted: Tue 14 Apr , 2009 1:48 pm 
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Edited.

Quote:
but false quotation seems to be your style lately


I suggest you back that up, sir, or retract it.

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 Post subject: Re: Easter SEALs
PostPosted: Tue 14 Apr , 2009 2:02 pm 
Pure Kitsch Flavor
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:uhoh:


Last edited by Estel on Tue 14 Apr , 2009 2:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Easter SEALs
PostPosted: Tue 14 Apr , 2009 2:10 pm 
of Vinyamar
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Apologies. I confused you with CG.

Now you might want me to retract that...

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 Post subject: Re: Easter SEALs
PostPosted: Tue 14 Apr , 2009 2:12 pm 
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No problem.

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 Post subject: Re: Easter SEALs
PostPosted: Wed 15 Apr , 2009 1:44 am 
Insolent Pup
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Solicitor,

What is your point with those fictional quotes? Maybe they were taken from real quotes, but guess what... Bush isn't President, so what we would have read isn't relevant because we WON'T be reading it.

I think Obama handled the situation well. He didn't rush in guns blazing, but tried a diplomatic approach. Sadly for the pirates, they made the Navy think that Phillips life was in danger, and now one is in custody, and three won't be bothering anyone anymore.

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 Post subject: Re: Easter SEALs
PostPosted: Sun 19 Apr , 2009 2:24 am 
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"How Somalia's Fishermen Became Pirates"

http://www.time.com/time/world/article/0,8599,1892376,00.html

I think this is interesting and important. I'm not saying that it excuses piracy, but it's worth thinking about.

These pirates are also a reminder of the importance of well-functioning states and - where those do not exist - state-building. Weak and failed states are breeding grounds for terrorists and pirates, areas of wars and civil wars, and causing poverty and humanitarian and human rights disasters. Quoting Francis Fukuyama's "State Building: Governance and World Order in the Twenty-First Century", which I've just finished reading:

Quote:
What only states and states alone are able to do is aggregate and purposefully deploy legitimate power. This power is necessary to enforce a rule of law domestically, and it is necessary to preserve world order internationally.
[...]
Strengthening these [weak and failed] states through various forms of nation-building is a task that has become vital to international security but is one that few developed countries have mastered. Learning to do state-buildning better is thus central to the future of world order.


And also central, I think, if you want to solve this pirate problem. Military operations will not make the problem go away in the long run. Only fixing the cause of the problem will, which means helping Somalia to become a functioning state and society.

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