Author Topic: Avast There Me 'Earties!  (Read 1173 times)

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Offline Mart

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Avast There Me 'Earties!
« on: October 30, 2011, 08:39:46 PM »
Ships sailing under a British flag will be able to carry armed guards to protect them from pirates, the prime minister has announced.

Where more than three of these ships congregate it shall be known as 'A Navy' in a homage to times past.

David Cameron says he wants to combat the risks to shipping off the coast of Somalia, where 49 of the world's 53 hijackings last year took place.

A bit louder now, 'A NAVY'.

Under the plans, the home secretary would be given the power to license armed guards for ships.

My personal choice would be a BL 16 inch Mark I British naval gun. The barrel is an immoderate 720 inches long, I think it important to look the part.

No ship carrying armed security has yet been hijacked, the government claims.

Government claim? Good enough for me.

Up to 200 vessels flying the red ensign - the British merchant navy flag - regularly sail close to Somalia. Officials estimate that about 100 of those would immediately apply for permission to have armed guards.

From their HQ in Liberia.

Under the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea every ship is subject to the jurisdiction of the country whose flag it carries.

Got an EU one?

It is thought many British-registered ships already carry armed guards because they feel they have no alternative.

Mmm, I think the Queen Mary has armed security guards to keep the riff raff out.

However, licensing ships to carry armed guards could still fall foul of laws in other countries. Egypt recently announced that armed guards would not be permitted on ships sailing through the Suez canal.

Get yourself some of those BL 16 inch puppies and sail right on through.

Until now, vessels flying the British flag have not been licensed to carry their own weapons on board, something other countries have permitted.

Ah, that's the present day Navy. Substitute 'licensed' as 'been able to afford'.

Pirates operating out of Somalia now range over around three million square miles of sea leaving existing navy patrols stretched.

Aircraft carrier mebbe, take it in turns? Oh...

The hope will be that armed patrols act as a deterrent, but there are risks. Some experts warn of the danger of an escalation in the violence with pirates responding with heavier weapons.

NAVY

The practicalities can also be complex - some countries are less willing than others to have foreign nationals working for private security companies carrying weapons in their ports or while sailing in their waters.

Yes. It's a bit like, um, piracy.

And while maritime and security industry experts believe this measure may help, it is unlikely to deal with the fundamental causes of the piracy problem - that will require more effective governance and stability in Somalia.

We could provide that with a NAVY and an ARMY and that lot with the aeroplane. All we need is a popular movement we approve of to go and support.

Mr Cameron said he wanted to legalise armed guards after talks in Australia with Commonwealth leaders from the region over the escalating problem faced in waters off their shores.

Did I mention 'Navy'? P'raps Mr Cameron thinks it refers only to a colour.

But armed guards would only be permitted while passing through dangerous waters, such as the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden.

Pirates the world over are busily scribbling that down. 'Pass me the charts for the Spanish Main Jim lad, and the Thames Estuary'.

Asked if he was comfortable with giving private security operatives the right to "shoot to kill" if necessary, Mr Cameron told BBC One's Andrew Marr Show: "We have to make choices. "Frankly, the extent of the hijack and ransom of ships round the Horn of Africa is a complete stain on our world.

What on earth else do you shoot for? Especially if you take a pop with the trusty Mark1 16inch.

"The fact that a bunch of pirates in Somalia are managing to hold to ransom the rest of the world and our trading system is a complete insult and the rest of the world needs to come together with much more vigour."

Well scuse me Dave, we've bombed the doodahs out of others for doing somewhat less than holding the world to ransom. Could it be a lack of a, ahem, Navy, that means the protection of merchant shipping has been 'outsourced'?

The International Chamber of Shipping (ICS), which represents over 80% of the world's merchant fleet, welcomed the move as likely to have a deterrent effect - but said it was only a "short-term measure".Secretary general Peter Hinchliffe said the ICS was concerned about how pirates would respond to the move."To date, no ships with armed guards on board have been captured. But pirates will respond with increased firepower to overwhelm the armed guards, and when that happens the impact on the crew will be pretty dreadful," he told Reuters.

What you do, Pete, is build big f*** off ships, paint them, I dunno, battleship grey and then festoon them with all manner of things that go pop, bang and kaboom. Evidently you can build ones that aeroplanes can take off from, and land on. Chinese have got one. Then every you time you see an inflatable with some chappy perched in the bow with an RPG on his shoulder you err on the side of caution and let fly.

Peter Cook, director of the Security Association for the Maritime Industry (Sami), welcomed the policy change, but Commodore Angus Menzies, from the Honourable Company of Master Mariners, said it would "shift the problem elsewhere".

So that's where he went.

Mr Cook said many armed guards were former Royal Navy and Royal Marines personnel, and he added: "With the current redundancies it has provided them with an ideal place to go."

Aaaah, suddenly the mist clears. Sea mist obviously.

Transport Secretary Justine Greening said it was "sensible" for ships to be able to take "appropriate measures to protect their crew and cargo".The UK will allow the use of private armed guards in exceptional circumstances and where it is lawful, she added.

Shouldn't she be buying grit? Strange absence of Admirals so far, would have thought it was their specialist subject.

Shadow Foreign Office Minister, John Spellar, welcomed the move but said more details were needed from the government about how it would be implemented.
 
Inflatable craft, local looking chappy, shell suit bottoms, Man U shirt and an RPG. Shoot on sight. That's the implementation plan I guess.

Sami director Mr Cook said most armed guards would be using high velocity rifles, which were used to "deter pirates" from attempting to board a ship.

I think you'll find the Mark1 16inch more than fits the bill. They'll be permanently deterred if a 16 inch shell hits them, no re-offending there.
 
Use of armed guards would be restricted to voyages through particular waters in affected areas He confirmed that no vessel with armed guards had been taken over by pirates, and said in several cases guards had fired shots at pirates.

Cue sail by shootings.

Maritime risk consultants Haymarket said the introduction of armed guards would save the British shipping and insurance industries millions of pounds.

Bit of money in piracy then, we used to be quite good at it.......

John Bisseru, a maritime risk specialist at the firm, said: "Prevention is the way forward, and qualified and trained armed guards will be significant step."

Yes, 340 years ago they were called Marines.

France and Spain provide so-called military vessel protection detachments, while Italy is planning a similar measure.

'So-called' because they are French and Spanish presumably. If Italy turns up they will be 'laughable' military vessel protection detachments.

Except if they turn up in one of their aircraft carriers, especially the new one. That would be a bit humiliating really.

In July, the Foreign Office Minister Henry Bellingham said limited military resources meant it was not possible to free up Royal Marines for a ship protection role.

I think we can all interpret that.

Other counter-piracy measures being taken include offering support from Treasury officials to Kenya to help its officials track down pirates' assets.

Not really the pirates' assets though are they, that's taking 'hug a hoody' a bit too far. 'So, you bought this 151,000 ton ship from a bloke down the pub and he chucked in the 14,000 containers free?'

Mr Cameron also said help could be given to countries such as the Seychelles and Mauritius who were acting to bring pirates to court and imprison them.

I'll help, I'm packing now and I have my passport. Could be a long job, a very, very long job.


Sometimes I think you have to march right in and demand your rights, even if you don’t know what your rights are, or who the person is you’re talking to. Then, on the way out, slam the door.

Offline Geoff Reid

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Re: Avast There Me 'Earties!
« Reply #1 on: October 31, 2011, 12:08:20 AM »
Wot 'e said although I think a 16" is a bit cumbersome for dealing with small vessels.

I think these would be a bit easier to use, make a nice ripping sound too :)


Offline Muggins

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Re: Avast There Me 'Earties!
« Reply #2 on: October 31, 2011, 07:56:55 AM »
Could you have fallen on the reason the government idea that it's Ok to get rid of (Most of) the navy, and let business take the strain?

Our redundant navy blokes go into the 'private consultation business'  consultation goes like this 'is that a pirate?'  Then in effect our armed sea force are using private (merchant navy) ships instead of publicly owned ones.

Sort of like land soldiers commandeering your car?

Or the airforce commandeering a passenger plane?
Oi! Listen mush. Old eyes, remember? I’ve been around the block a few times. More than a few. They’ve knocked down the blocks I’ve been around and rebuilt them as bigger blocks. Super blocks. And I’ve been round them as well.  The Doctor (Night Terrors)

Offline Tobes

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Re: Avast There Me 'Earties!
« Reply #3 on: October 31, 2011, 05:00:37 PM »
Muggins -

Quote
Or the airforce commandeering a passenger plane?


You are smack on the money! Sad thing is, this has ALREADY happened!!!

http://www.mod.uk/DefenceInternet/FactSheets/ProjectFactsheets/FutureStategicTankerAircraftfstaQuestionsAnswers.htm

Read between the pseudo military bollocks nu-speak and you'll quickly spot that -
- The aircraft don't belong to the RAF
- Will be serviced in 'partnership' with civilian contractors (ie. people who might well tell the military to get stuffed if bullets start flying - or who could, potentially, choose to go on strike if they wanted)
- Will be used 'commercially' when not employed by the RAF (should you know of someone who requires air-to-air refuelling or wants to travel to Tenerife in a rear-facing seat)

Its incredible that something as obviously flawed in concept as this has happened, but there you go: People paid huge salaries stand to profit, so who are we, the mere tax payer, the ones who'll end up paying one way or the other, to question such brilliant minds, eh?
I do not agree with what you have to say, but I'll defend to the death your right to say it - [attributed to] Voltaire... 'Entia non sunt multiplicanda praeter necessita' - William of Occam.... 'You have a right to feel offended, but just cos you are offended doesn't mean you are right'

Offline Muggins

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Re: Avast There Me 'Earties!
« Reply #4 on: October 31, 2011, 06:00:13 PM »
I suppose it will be like pirates in reverse, when the enemy is seen the merchant navy flag will be furled and the  Royal Navy flag up the post before you can say ?uccineer.
Oi! Listen mush. Old eyes, remember? I’ve been around the block a few times. More than a few. They’ve knocked down the blocks I’ve been around and rebuilt them as bigger blocks. Super blocks. And I’ve been round them as well.  The Doctor (Night Terrors)

Offline Terry Reynolds

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Re: Avast There Me 'Earties!
« Reply #5 on: October 31, 2011, 06:28:22 PM »
As been reported before, when this contract is over, after 27 years, the aircraft will revert to the ownership of the provider, they, the contract PFI holders, will also at the end of the contract be almost five billion pounds in profit from this scheme, and the RAF, will then have to go elsewhere for its fuel and transport.  As this is just another of Mr Browns projects, I wonder if it will come in the budget arranged or like so many be millions over budget.. :censored: