Why Won’t the Navy Fight?
Last week Galrahn reported on a U.S. Navy amphibious ship, the USS Peleliu fighting off a Somali pirate attack with its helicopters. This comment on the action struck me:
The Royal Navy didn’t stomp out piracy in the 19th century by scaring pirates to death.
Then today Strategypage has a analysis on the same subject which echoes these sentiments:
For the last three years, an international naval patrol, CTF 150 (Combined Task Force 150, operating out of Djibouti) has patrolled the entire 3,000 kilometer long coast. But with only about fifteen ships (from half a dozen nations), the CTF 150 has been able to slow down the pirates, but not stop them. The USS Peleliu is not part of the patrol, but was just passing through the area. Fortunately, the 39,000 ship normally carries about 30 helicopters, six Harrier jets, and a battalion of marines, so it had the means to deal with pirates.
Moreover, unless this coastal patrol force was willing to send troops ashore to kill or arrest the pirates in the land bases, the pirates will keep playing hide-and-seek with the naval patrols, and continue to attack ships and get away with it.
The USN leadership dallies on introducing littoral ships, they totally ignore the capabilities of small attack craft despite having tested some excellent designs. They ignore the threat from small craft even after the humiliating attack on USS Cole in 2000 as well as the even greater shame of the Royal Navy whose sailors were taken hostage by Iran in full view of Western battleships. While we’ve no doubt Western navies are well trained and have the world’s best ships, what good are our magnificent and world-spanning fleets (to coin a phrase) if the Navy won’t fight?
Piracy is Up Near Somalia. Will Pirates Likely Capture a US Aircraft Carrier if Hillary Becomes President?
Why not fight the pirates in Somalia and not just the Militants.?
What will John McCain to stop the Somali Pirates in the middle east?
Where can I get a good crew and a surplus ship to hunt pirates?