Today from Hiiraan Online:
Ads By Google
Europe's mainland piracy attack will escalate conflict
Tuesday, May 15, 2012
Ads By Google
The midnight attack by a single helicopter firing its machine gun into half-a-dozen Somali pirate skiffs is some distance from the “shock and awe” that usually heralds the start of most campaigns.
But as innocuous as it might seem, the first act of aggression by the EU led naval force is likely lead to a greater escalation in a conflict that has so far avoided bloodshed.
By attacking the pirates’ infrastructure the EU NAVFOR (naval force) has signalled that it will give some teeth to the announcement made in March to strike at Somali land targets.
The arrival of the new French amphibious assault ship Dixmude, complete with its Tiger attack helicopters, will increase the likelihood of intensified attacks against the logistics chain and infrastructure of the pirate business.
EU military planners, based at the British headquarters in Northwood, will also have a clear idea of the best targets and will be assembling their forces to put in some hard strikes against the pirates before they can fully react. That would be the aspiration at least, if the force is going to show it has some backbone.
But filling a few wooden skiffs with bullet holes is hardly likely to send the pirates scuttling to the hills and will make not much of a dent against the multi-million pound trade.
At best it might disrupt the trade forcing the pirates to bring their boats further inland making it harder to launch hijackings at sea.
The pirates are also expected to make their boats far harder to detect, possibly placing them closer to civilians increasing the likelihood of casualties.
But after years of successful trade the treasure chests are full of dollars making it likely that the next time the EU launches a strike against the pirate havens they will be met with an arsenal of anti-aircraft guns and missiles.
If an aircraft is taken down or large numbers of Somalis are killed, it will mark a significant escalation and further intervention into the wider Somali conflict.
With the end of the Afghanistan coming slowly into view, it is likely that more resources will be freed up to strike against a thorn in the side of the international economy.
The only way piracy will be cured is by addressing the problems in Somalia itself. That could well lead to weapons and tactics being used that are some distance in sophistication from a mild dousing by a door mounted machine gun.
The Most Dangerous Shipping Route In The World Is Getting Its Own Navy
- Business Insider
Will support Indian military action against pirates: Somali leader
- The Week
High-seas drama at Somali piracy trial in Italy
UN seeks continued Australian Africa aid
- Canberra Times
Five Reasons Drone Assassinations Are Illegal
Kenya official: Refugee camp blast kills policeman
EU carries out first air strikes against Somali pirates
Swede held in Kenya over suspected terror links
US leads world drive to oust Somalia terrorists
- Syndey Morning Herald
UN urges world to sustain aid flow to Somalia
Zardari wants hostages in Somalia freed
- The News International
Somali movie industry films love, not war
Thompson backing for Farah: Inspirational Mo has mental toughness to shine
14 pirates held off Oman coast
- Times of Oman
$ 2 million Saudi grant for UNICEF Somalia
- Arab News
SOMALIA: Hundreds of Somalis complete military training
All Rights Reserved Copyright. © 1999-2017, www.hiiraan.com