In what seems to be an increasingly common, or at least an increasingly covered, event, Somali pirates have hijacked another mercant vessel. Add this to the recent hijacking of the Sirius Star, and the battle a few weeks ago between an Indian frigate and a pirate mothership, and add it to the nearly forty hijackings that have taken place this year. I couldn’t find figures to see if this number is up from previous years (I’m certain it is, but I’m curious as to the degree of the spike).
It looks like the Gulf of Aden is becoming one of the most dangerous areas for commerce in the world. People here in the US hear “pirate,” and giggle and think of Johnny Depp or Erroll Flynn, but the reality is these men are cold-blooded killers with machine guns.
German, French, Indian, and Malaysian fleets appear to be stepping up their presence in the area, which is helpful, and hopefully will serve to deter some of these marauders. But they’ve been brazen enough as to attack another country’s naval vessels before, so more clashes are probably inevitable