There may be a close connection and little difference between modern day pirates, gangs, organized crime, and terrorist groups.Forget Johnny Depp and cutlasses. Pirates today carry AK-47s and use speed boats to plunder gas tankers and aid ships - with six attacks this week alone.Rise of modern-day pirates
By Sean CoughlanBBC News Magazine July 6, 2006
"Off Acheh, Malacca straits: Armed pirates in an unlit speedboat, blue hull, length about 10 metres. Approached a bulk carrier underway. They tried to board from stern. Raised alarm, crew mustered and activated fire hoses and directed search lights. Noticing crew alertness, pirates aborted boarding."
This isn't a scene from a movie, it's a real-life report of a pirate attack on Monday
off the coast of Indonesia.
The pirates are not always foiled. The International Maritime Bureau's piracy monitoring centre has already recorded six attacks this week, including two which succeeded in robbing ships carrying relief to tsunami-affected areas.
Romantic gloss 'blinds public to the evil of piracy'
Times Online - UK, July 7, 2006
By Ben Webster, Transport Correspondent
PIRACY on the high seas, given a romantic gloss by films such as Pirates of the Caribbean, is a growing risk to seafarers, with 340 deaths since 1992. The number of attacks has grown fivefold since the late 1980s, from 50 a year to more than 250 in each of the past seven years, according to a report by MPs. Last year there were 264 reported attacks, including an attempt to hijack the Seabourn Spirit, a cruise ship carrying British passengers, off Somalia.
More than 650 passengers and crew were taken hostage from ships last year; 152 were injured and 11 remain missing. Victims are often thrown overboard and left to drown. In 2003 British officers on board an Isle of Man-registered supply ship were held hostage until a ransom was paid.
“There is nothing remotely ‘romantic’ about the perpetrators of these appalling crimes, or their detestable activity.”
The report condemned the many shipping companies that force officers to work more than 84 hours a week while at sea. “There is evidence that the resulting tiredness makes ships an easier target.”
Most of the 302 passengers on the cruise ship Seabourn Spirit last November were asleep when the captain said “stay inside, we are under attack”. Two boats were making a dawn raid, 100 miles off the coast of Somalia. Norman Fisher, 55, was on board. He said: “I saw a small boat with about five people in it. They had some kind of a rocket launcher, which they fired at the ship. Fortunately, nobody was hurt.” The crew defended the ship with a device that directs soundwaves towards a target. It appeared to work because the pirates left without managing to board.Antigua joins battle against human trafficking
Tuesday June 20 2006, by Marabel Jacobs
Just recently 13 Dominican Republic nationals entered the country on a cruise ship and were later found in a house on St. Georges Street. Some 30 Haitians ended up in Barbuda and 13 Chinese nationals were dumped in the Five Islands area.
“We discussed the facilitation of arranging and assisting with illegal entry as trafficking is the exploitation of migrants and resources. You are thinking now of prostitution and forced labour, even the removal of organs. Trafficking is a crime and it is akin to other crimes like drug trafficking and firearms and gun crimes and prostitution. It is associated with violence.”
According to Walker security concerns were raised at the meeting with respect to terrorists using the opportunity to come through the region during the upcoming World Cup event. He revealed, however, the conference committed to a thorough screening process.http://www.legalaffairs.org/issues/July-August-2005/
The Magazine at the Intersection of Law & Life
, "The Dread Pirate Bin Laden: How thinking of terrorists as pirates can help win the war on terror." By Douglas R. Burgess Jr.If the war on terror becomes akin to war against the pirates, however, the situation would change. First, the crime of terrorism would be defined and proscribed internationally, and terrorists would be properly understood as enemies of all states. This legal status carries significant advantages, chief among them the possibility of universal jurisdiction. Terrorists, as hostis humani generis, could be captured wherever they were found, by anyone who found them. Pirates are currently the only form of criminals subject to this special jurisdiction. Second, this definition would deter states from harboring terrorists on the grounds that they are "freedom fighters" by providing an objective distinction in law between legitimate insurgency and outright terrorism. This same objective definition could, conversely, also deter states from cracking down on political dissidents as "terrorists," as both Russia and China have done against their dissidents. Recall the U.N. definition of piracy as acts of "depredation [committed] for private ends." Just as international piracy is viewed as transcending domestic criminal law, so too must the crime of international terrorism be defined as distinct from domestic homicide or, alternately, revolutionary activities. If a group directs its attacks on military or civilian targets within its own state, it may still fall within domestic criminal law. Yet once it directs those attacks on property or civilians belonging to another state, it exceeds both domestic law and the traditional right of self-determination, and becomes akin to a pirate band. Third, and perhaps most important, nations that now balk at assisting the United States in the war on terror might have fewer reservations if terrorism were defined as an international crime that could be prosecuted before the International Criminal Court. For now, these possibilities remain distant. But there are immediate benefits to pointing out that terrorism has a precedent in piracy. In the short term, it is a tool to cut the Gordian knot of definition that has hampered antiterrorist legislation for 40 years. In the long term, and far more important, it provides the parameters by which to understand this current and intense conflict and the means within which it may one day be resolved. That resolution will begin with the recognition among nations that terrorism is a threat to all states and to all persons, the same recognition given to piracy in 1856. Terrorists, like pirates, must be given their proper status in law: hostis humani generis, enemies of the human race.http://www.cindyvallar.com/modernresources.html Modern Piracy Resources Compiled By Cindy Vallar 6/30/06 miami herald June 5, 2006Royal Caribbean hires No. 3 at FBI to oversee securityBY AMY MARTINEZ
Gary M. Bald, who last week stepped down as director of the FBI's National Security Branch -- the agency's no. 3 post -- will carry the title of vice president for global security at Royal Caribbean, a new position with broad responsibilities. Bald will report directly to company Chairman and CEO Richard D. Fain. Bald spent nearly 29 years at the FBI, most recently as chief of its worldwide counterterrorism, counterintelligence and intelligence programs, directing 19,000 employees.