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Somali Pirates Seize 21 American Sailors

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posted on Apr, 8 2009 @ 09:24 PM
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reply to post by xpert11
 





Well of course current efforts to combat piracy off Somali have failed because the wrong approach is being taken. The right approach would be to implement a convoy with adequate air cover and escorts. Clearly who ever dreamed up the current strategy either never read about or understood the Battle of the Atlantic. I would have thought that the Battle of the Atlantic would have been compulsory reading for any future naval leaders.



From the Horn of Africa to the north tip of Madagascar is 1,200 miles. Going out to sea into the Indian Ocean half that distance, 600 miles, gives a zone of interest of 600 X 1200 miles or 720.000 square miles. About 1.9 million km/2. The US east of the Mississippi is 1.2 million square miles. We are talking about patrolling an area more than half the size of the eastern third of the US. I would not be surprised to learn there are 200-300 ships in that zone at any given time.

Early in WW2, the Battle of the Atlantic - which we nearly lost - was greatly hampered by lack of long range patrol aircraft. Further, it was not until late in 1942 that we developed methods to refuel destroyer escort class ships at sea thereby enabling them to go the whole distance that we finally slowed to “annoyance” levels the damage caused by German U-boats. And not to forget that between Bletchley Park and a fortuitously captured Enigma machine we “knew” where the U-boats were congregating into the infamous and deadly wolf packs. None of those facts apply today.

The pirates have no use for the ship cargoes. It is the threat to kill the crew that is 80% of the owner’s concern and loss of the ship is 20% of the equation. We know it is NOT any humane concern for the crews that creates the 80% leverage for the pirates. Ship owners do not give a dam about crew lives. But, if owners let the pirates kill a couple crews, you would have either NO crews to man the ships OR crew wages would go through the sky! Like Blackwater mercenaries at $10,000 a month. Globalization depends on low cost ocean freight. On that issue the R&Fs - rich and famous - have great concern.

We can only stop piracy at the SOURCE. Say also as in terrorism. (But we prefer the simplistic and violent solution to all problems). We will spend - say waste - 10s of billions of dollars if we try to patrol 700,000 square miles. And still the pirates will find a ship to strike! As they are demonstrating to the world shipping industry today. A UN expeditionary force along with civilian infrastructure workers to give young Somali men a peaceful alternative to PIRACY or STARVING will end this. But that may be TOO smart for us?

It looks as if the R&Fs will have to become socialists after all, if they are to successfully continue their LUCRATIVE capitalist ways! To some small extent anyway. Part-time socialists.

Like the suicide bomber and rockets from GAZA, the R&Fs will ONLY listen to you when YOU make them. When the rockets stop going into Israel, the talk stops. Talking will not commence again until the ROCKETS take to the air! We could expedite this process around the world if we DRAFTED the sons and daughters of the R&Fs to fight in the front lines. As long as it is the POOR who do the dying, issues will always be decided on a cost-benefit analysis basis.


[edit on 4/9/2009 by donwhite]




posted on Apr, 9 2009 @ 01:52 AM
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reply to post by donwhite
 


As I have stated in the past I expect that the US and some of its allies will take a greater foothold in Africa with Somali or Sudan being the likely places . Although with the moronic left wing opposition to the War in Afghanistan which includes PRT teams the very thing , you are talking about I don't see how a US return to Africa is politically viable any time soon . So the convoy system remains the best option once the pirates cant hijack ships they will have to find other things to do on the shore . We all going to pay the price literally for Clinton being to chicken to get the job done in Somali .

The shipping company's are possible even dumber then the people who dreamed up the current strategy.
Why folk out for mercenary's when the worlds navies and air forces can provide better protection at the expense of the tax payer ?

As a historical note of interest the cost of shipping or cargo insurance also skyrocket during WW1 when the German raider the Emden and her compatriots wreaked havoc in the Indian Ocean . Of course Luckner , Müller and co gained everybody respect because of there brilliant seamanship , tactical minds and there treatment of captured crews and there efforts to keep causalities to a minimal level . The pirates who hijack ships for ransom will never gain such respect .



posted on Apr, 9 2009 @ 08:37 AM
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reply to post by xpert11
 




As I have stated in the past I expect that the US and some of its allies will take a greater foothold in Africa with Somali or Sudan being the likely places. Although with the moronic left wing opposition to the War in Afghanistan which includes PRT teams the very thing you are talking about I don't see how a US return to Africa is politically viable any time soon.



Recall the warning, “When your only tool is a hammer, everything looks like a nail?” The financial crash has brought to our attention that even America cannot do everything all the time. We spend more money on ink for printing our budget than Fuji Islands spend in total. As much as I love Obama and as much an improvement over his predecessor, he is till talking about WHAT WE WANT TO DO IN AFGHANISTAN and Pakistan. Obama is a politician of the first order, which bottom line is LEARNING what is POSSIBLE and doting that! I have already pointed out how our Congress is 435 - nay 535 - nay 541 - separate fiefdoms and Obama does not CONTROL Congress. Aa long as the 41 Republicans in the Senate stick together, Obama is hamstrung! TOO much democracy.





So the convoy system remains the best option once the pirates cant hijack ships they will have to find other things to do on the shore. We all going to pay the price literally for Clinton being too chicken to get the job done in Somali.




LATE IN THE AFTERNOON of Sunday, Oct. 3, 1993, attack helicopters dropped about 120 elite American soldiers into a busy neighborhood in the heart of Mogadishu, Somalia. Their mission was to abduct several top lieutenants of Somalian warlord Mohamed Farrah Aidid and return to base. It was supposed to take about an hour.

Instead, two of their high-tech UH-60 Blackhawk attack helicopters were shot down. The men were pinned down through a long and terrible night in a hostile city, fighting for their lives. When they emerged the following morning, 18 Americans were dead and 73 were wounded. One, helicopter pilot Michael Durant, had been carried off by an angry mob. He was still alive, held captive somewhere in the city.

The Somalian toll was far worse. Reliable witnesses in the U.S. military and in Mogadishu now place the count at nearly 500 dead - scores more than was estimated at the time - among more than a thousand casualties. Many were women and children. This was hardly what U.S. and United Nations officials envisioned when they intervened in Somalia in December 1992 to help avert widespread starvation.
inquirer.philly.com...


Bill Clinton took office January 20, 1993. Even further behind the curve than was JFK some six presidents ago who was presented with the Bay of Pigs plans ready to go - and those from Ike the War Hero - Clinton was met with a fait accompli in Somali about which he had nothing to say. When American overnight losses in Mogadishu (18 KIA) were compared to Bush 1's scant losses in the 100 hours ‘Liberate Kuwait’ Campaign, Clinton saw no pluses and all minuses. AND 94.3% of Americans could not spell “Mogadishu” and 96.1% did not know where Somali was. Unlike Cuban Americans or Jewish Americans, the Somali had NO constituency over here.

Aside: I do want to see a United Nations STANDARDS OF GOVERNANCE Commission sufficiently empowered to effect REGIME CHANGE as it is a constant source of terrorism and other unwanted things such as piracy. But I put no blame on Bill Clinton for leaving Somali in 1993. I don’t think there Is a genuine connection between 1993 and 2009.




Why fork out for mercenary's when the worlds navies and air forces can provide better protection at the expense of the tax payer?



AID to business GOOD, AID to people BAD. Hm?




Luckner, Müller and Co gained everybody respect because of there brilliant seamanship, tactical minds and there treatment of captured crews and there efforts to keep causalities to a minimal level. The pirates who hijack ships for ransom will never gain such respect.



L, M & Co. You are ahead of me Mr X11. Please elucidate. See more from the above external source.


The American public is rarely exposed to the realities of warfare. The Pentagon does not allow reporters to accompany soldiers directly into battle, a journalistic tradition that ended after Vietnam. What results is a sanitized picture of combat. The public knows only what the military chooses to portray, or what cameras are able to see from afar. Americans have little understanding of what awaits frightened young soldiers, or of their heroic and sometimes savage attempts to save themselves and their fellow soldiers.

Americans recoiled at the images of soldiers' corpses being dragged through the streets
, but they had no inkling of the searing 15-hour battle that produced their deaths. There has never been a detailed public accounting. Most of the Pentagon records documenting the firefight remain classified, and most of the soldiers who fought are in special forces, generally off-limits to reporters.

The assault was launched into the most dangerous part of Mogadishu in daylight, even though the Ranger and Delta forces were trained and equipped primarily to work in darkness
- where their night-vision devices can afford a decisive advantage. Commanders who thought it unlikely that Somalis could shoot down helicopters saw five shot down (three limped back to base before crash-landing). Ground rescue convoys were blocked for hours by barricades and ambushes - leaving at least five U.S. soldiers to die awaiting rescue, including two Delta sergeants who were posthumously awarded Medals of Honor.

The American soldiers were so confident of a quick victory that they neglected to take night-vision devices and water
, both sorely needed later. Carefully defined rules of engagement, calling for soldiers to fire only on Somalis who aimed weapons at them, were quickly discarded in the heat of the fight. Most soldiers interviewed said that through most of the fight they fired on crowds and eventually at anyone and anything they saw.

Animosity between the elite Delta units and the Ranger infantry forces effectively created two separate ground-force commanders, who for at least part of the battle were no longer speaking to each other. Delta commandos took accidental fire on several occasions from the younger Rangers.
Poor coordination between commanders in the air and a ground convoy sent vehicles meandering through a maelstrom of fire, resulting in the deaths of five soldiers and one Somalian prisoner.

In strictly military terms, Mogadishu was a success.
The targets of that day's raid - two obscure clan leaders named Omar Salad and Mohamed Hassan Awale - were apprehended.

But the awful price of those arrests came as a shock to a young president, who felt as misled as John F. Kennedy after the Bay of Pigs. It led to the resignation of Defense Secretary Les Aspin and destroyed the career of Gen. Garrison, who in a handwritten letter to Clinton accepted full responsibility. It aborted a hopeful and unprecedented United Nations effort to salvage an impoverished and hungry nation lost in anarchy and civil war.

Soldiers cannot concern themselves with the decisions that bring them to a fight. They trust their leaders not to risk their lives for too little.
Once the battle is joined, they fight to survive, to kill before they are killed. The story of a battle is timeless. It is about the same things whether in Troy or Gettysburg, Normandy or the Ia Drang. It is about soldiers, most of them young, trapped in a fight to the death. The extreme and terrible nature of war touches something essential about being human, and soldiers do not always like what they learn.

For those who survive, the battle lives on in their memories and nightmares and in the dull ache of old wounds long after the reasons for it have been forgotten. Yet what happened to these men in Mogadishu comes alive every time the United States considers sending young soldiers to serve American policy in remote and dangerous corners of the world. By Mark Bowden, November 16, 1997
inquirer.philly.com...


Our system puts responsibility for strategic decisions on the Commander in Chief, but it is the 4 stars who are responsible for tactical performance on the ground.

[edit on 4/9/2009 by donwhite]



posted on Apr, 9 2009 @ 12:04 PM
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This is being handled very, very, leniently, and badly. Set up 4 SEAL sniper teams on the Bainbridge and let them take simultaneous head shots to everyone but the captain. Problem solved, example made, end of story. FBI negotiators? Save everyone the time and resources and just use cent worth bullets.



posted on Apr, 9 2009 @ 12:08 PM
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Q ships. I think this could be the answer.



posted on Apr, 9 2009 @ 03:54 PM
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reply to post by WestPoint23
 


The picture shown of the fully enclosed lifeboat capable of holding 20 passengers is too large and too difficult to enter to allow of the SHOOT 4, MISS 1 approach.

When the only tool in your box is a hammer, you tend to think everything you see is a nail.



posted on Apr, 9 2009 @ 04:49 PM
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Originally posted by donwhite
When the only tool in your box is a hammer, you tend to think everything you see is a nail.


It is not an impossible feat to accomplish. Certainly there is inherent risk, however I have full confidence in our SOF. More importantly I don't prescribe to the school of though that would compel some to try and negotiate their way out of a disease.



posted on Apr, 9 2009 @ 05:08 PM
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reply to post by WestPoint23
 


There's over 2 million square miles of ocean to patrol. No Navy in the world alone can survey that area by itself.

That'd require in the least, 3-4 Carrier Groups, innumerable air assets, most of the COMNAVAIRPAC's recon wing, Naval Warfare Command and SEAL teams 1, 3 and 5 for the inevitable counter-insurgency Ops in the High seas.

The US doesn't want to touch Somalia with a 10ft pole. No one wants a repeat of 1993, being led to believe they're going to be giving aid and assistance and finding out they have to pacify an entire country is not something the top brass appreciated and hence they just don't want to even consider this a vital issue.



[edit on 9/4/09 by The Godfather of Conspira]



posted on Apr, 9 2009 @ 05:14 PM
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reply to post by WestPoint23
 




It is not an impossible feat to accomplish. Certainly there is inherent risk, however I have full confidence in our SOF. More importantly I don't prescribe to the school of though that would compel some to try and negotiate their way out of a disease.



Hee's my take. I will admit it is frustrating. But I think all the shippers have paid the required ransom. I suspect the FBI negotiator is trying to get the price down and is not trying to convert the Muslim pirates into born again Christians.

The Somali are taking full advantage of an opportunity and are practicing classical niche capitalism that Harvard Business School would do well to study.

As I pointed out, 700,000 square miles is more open ocean that even the mighty US Navy can make safe. We self deceive if we keep thinking we can do anything/everything. All the more if we can do it all at the same time. The Somali are reminding us we still put our pants on one leg at a time. We sorely need to shed some of this hubris.

I just heard Sec. State Clinton on the tv - BBC News - and she is still operating in the PAST mode. She slipped when she said “there are 21 Americans” involved and she called on the world to come to our aid. Sweet Jesus. Where has my favorite woman politician been for the past 3 decades? She leaves the thought that ONLY when Americans are at risk do we tend to business. She’s living in the 1990s and this is the 2000s - nearly the 2010s.

We’ll do exactly what the pirates want. Pay $3 million cash dropped by a chopper into a boat just before dark. When the sun comes up they and the money will be gone and the American captain will be safe in the lifeboat. Let’s move on, and just be sure to keep some cash handy.

We can no more stop the Somali than we can stop the Afghans or stop the Pakistanis. Or the drug cartels that have moved to Mexico. We are living in the wrong place at the wrong time.


[edit on 4/9/2009 by donwhite]



posted on Apr, 9 2009 @ 05:18 PM
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reply to post by The Godfather of Conspira
 


I'm not concerned with the idea of a permanent armed flotilla in that part of the world. Even modest security and policy changes to the civilian ships can prevent the overwhelming majority of pirate attempts. In this situation, however, besides securing the release of the hostage an example needs to be made.



posted on Apr, 9 2009 @ 05:50 PM
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It will be interesting to see how Obama reacts to this incident.

Will he nip it in the bud and go after those responsible with no mercy or will he cower and bow just because he does not want to offend anyone?

This is the incident that just may give the US a Paper Tiger label once again.

People can say what they can say what they want about Palin but something tells me she would livid over this incident and react accordingly.



posted on Apr, 9 2009 @ 06:17 PM
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reply to post by Alxandro
 



Will he nip it in the bud and go after those responsible with no mercy or will he cower and bow just because he does not want to offend anyone?


Oh for god's sakes, at least read the entire thread before coming in here and making completely out of context statements that have already been deliberated ad naseum.

This issue has about as much to do with Obama lack's activity regarding it as it does Santa Claus's.

Obama isn't taking action because there really is no easy-fix solution he can simply apply with the approval of Congress.
The same reason Bush ignored piracy completely.

American Naval assets are stretched to the limit at present.

Top military brass do no want a repeat of Operation Gothic Serpent in 1993.

Allied countries show little initiative in forming a coordinated Naval task force.

To top it off, in the end it would require full scale intervention in Somalia.

The last thing anyone needs... and there's no way in hell the public would support 3 quagmires at the same time.

[edit on 9/4/09 by The Godfather of Conspira]



posted on Apr, 9 2009 @ 07:31 PM
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reply to post by Alxandro
 




People can say what they can say what they want about Palin but something tells me she would livid over this incident and react accordingly.



Well, she did get livid when Levi put it right on her as an enabler for her daughter getting pregnant while still legally a chid. And at home, too. Sarah may have some of Octo-mom’s problems? But as for Somalia and the Indian Ocean, Palin would not be strong there unless she can see it from her front porch.




[edit on 4/9/2009 by donwhite]



posted on Apr, 9 2009 @ 08:22 PM
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reply to post by donwhite
 


Clinton ought to have known the state of the play when he took office politicians little alone US presidents should have enough advisers to know what is going on . Personally I think that the US getting a foot hold in Africa will come to late much like Iraq the second time around . Somalia is going to remain a security problem in the region a convoy system reduces the problem somewhat . Critics bemoan the lack of control the Afghan government has over Afghanistan well the situation in Somalia is worse and there is no chance of it getting any better .

Luckner and Muller were German commerce raider captains during WW1 . If you want an honest look at the US military and the Vietnam war in particular then read David Hackworth About Face it is the sort of thing that should be required reading at military academy's(SP?) .



posted on Apr, 9 2009 @ 08:47 PM
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Does this sound like something out of Atlas Shrugged to anyone else? In the book, piracy becomes an everyday occurrence, and one of the protagonists gets in on the action by hijacking US aid ships bound for other failing socialist countries. Every day, more and more events from that book seem to be happening in the real world. Scary times.

On a happier note, last i heard, the captain and crew of the ship are all alive and doing well. It seems the pirates don't actually want to harm anyone, they just want the ransom. That doesn't justify their actions but it is a small comfort.

Although there is no law against carrying weapons on the open sea, the owners and insurers of these vessels apparently don't want to arm the crew for these sorts of situations. The general consensus seems to be: it's cheaper, and less dangerous just to let insurance pay the ransom. That's fair enough, but it's time for the armed forces to do something about these nautical nuisances. Eventually, shipping insurance is going to skyrocket, thus increasing the cost of everything we import and forcing US companies to charge more for our exports. It wouldn't take very long to take out this piracy ring, and the sooner it gets done, the better.


TheAssociate



posted on Apr, 9 2009 @ 09:00 PM
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Originally posted by The Godfather of Conspira
The US doesn't want to touch Somalia with a 10ft pole.


If I may godfather of conspira, please allow me to amend what you have mentioned:

The international community (i.e.: the United Nations) doesn't want to touch Somalia with a 10ft. pole.




Top military brass do no want a repeat of Operation Gothic Serpent in 1993.


Blackhawk Down syndrome does not only and still affect the U.S. mindset when it comes to Somalia, it affects the entire international community, starting with the U.N.

[edit on 9-4-2009 by Seekerof]



posted on Apr, 9 2009 @ 09:07 PM
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Two more ships are heading to join the Bainbridge. They'll be there within 24 hours. USS Halyburton (FFG-40) is one, I didn't see what the other is.



posted on Apr, 9 2009 @ 09:12 PM
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reply to post by xpert11
 




Somalia is going to remain a security problem in the region a convoy system reduces the problem somewhat. Critics bemoan the lack of control the Afghan government has over Afghanistan well the situation in Somalia is worse and there is no chance of it getting any better.



Somalia is what was left over after the Brits, French, Belgians, Germans, Italians and Spanish divided the African continent. I think it was allotted to the Italians who switched sides in War 1 to come up on the winning side. Once upon a time its major industry was drying salt along the 100s of miles of Indian Ocean coastline.

At low tide, you dig holes along the beach, then when the tide comes it, the holes are filled. Then the tide goes out and the sun evaporates the water leaving behind genuine sea salt upscale types here pay a premium for. Like the poor around the world, you work yourself to death and have nothing to show for it. I’d agree overpopulation is Somalia major underlying adverse factor.




Luckner and Muller were German commerce raider captains during WW1 . If you want an honest look at the US military and the Vietnam war in particular then read David Hackworth About Face it is the sort of thing that should be required reading at military academy's.



It’s been a long time since I’ve read Hackworth on Vietnam. I never agreed with him then and I have not changed. His major complaint was that the military might of the US was held back due to political considerations, such as us not bombing Hanoi into the stone age. Not to speak of Hai Phong. I’d describe Hackworth as a MacArthur, Junior. “Mac was his name, war was his game.” [[Mr X11 says I have David Hackworth wrong]]

Look, the British defeated the French in Europe which made our version, the French and Indian War, look as if we had beaten the French here. Then we won the Revolutionary War when we had neither the manpower nor the money to run the Spanish out of Florida.

Again, the War of 1812 was ours due to the huge British outlay to defeat Napoleon and we misinterpreted our very generous peace with Great Britain as due to our own genius, which was reinforced by the stroke of luck - killing the Brits general - that Jackson had at New Orleans.

We knocked off the ill-led Mexicans in 1846-1848, and took 3/4ths of the Western US. Which again made us feel like we had accomplished something. We beat the decadent Spanish in 2 battles, one in Cuba and one in Manila Bay, and got ourselves a small empire. The Cubans proved ungrateful and we left but kept Guantanamo Bay which was valuable then as a base to defend the Panama Canal.

The Filipinos thought we meant to liberate them from the Spanish but were chagrined to learn we meant to take the place of the Spanish. We fought the Huks - Muslims - in Mindanao for 3 years 1902-1905 - and lost 3,000 KIA so we decided to leave the Huks alone. (We are still helping the Filipinos fight the Huks in 2009). We left the Philippines in 1946 but I’m pretty sure we took anything of value before we left. I understand MacArthur owned a lot of downtown Manila.

We joined WW1 in April, 1917, and had fought in 4 battles when it ended in November, 1918. Over here we claim credit for that. We lost 125,000 KIA compared to the Brits 2 million, the French 3 million, the Germans 3 million and he Russians 5 million. Actually we had 1.5 million men in France by November, and another 1.5 million in training in the US to come over. We did make the difference but it was not in the trenches. Then due to Wilson’s physical condition and Republican isolationism, we backed out of Europe. Which is why some people say WW2 was the LAST battle of WW1.

I have said TOO much just to say Hackworth and a whole lot of Americans have too high an opinion of our military prowess. I think every person of reason admits the US could never have defeated the Vietnamese. Hackworth’s claims to the contrary notwithstanding.

We can’t close our southern border. We can’t stop coc aine from Columbia. We can’t stop heroin from Afghan. We can’t stop the Pakistani from dealing with the people living in their own country. We can’t stop India and Pakistan lusting after Kashmir. And we can’t end the Arab Israeli War we started in 1948. So why or how can we STOP the Somali now or the Vietnamese earlier?


[edit on 4/9/2009 by donwhite]



posted on Apr, 9 2009 @ 09:19 PM
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Are these pirates being haunted.

The first American warship to the rescue of the MV Maersk Alabama was the USS Bainbridge.

The last American flagged vessel to be captured by pirates was the USS Philadelphia-- Who was the last captain to lose his vessel to pirates captain Willian Bainbridge -- namesake of the current USS Bainbridge (DDG-96) the first warship to the rescue of the MV Maersk Alabama off Somalia

www.cargolaw.com...-Alabama.




[edit on 9-4-2009 by ANNED]



posted on Apr, 10 2009 @ 06:08 AM
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Just in. I have no source as it just made it on the wire. There was a failed escape attempt by the captain of the ship.



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