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September 6, 2009

A family emergency took me away for most of the weekend. I’m back now and hope to catch up on your comments. Anyway, we’ll start fresh tomorrow. Thanks always for dropping in and sharing!

14 Comments leave one →
  1. September 9, 2009 3:58 pm

    Mike,

    Yeah, I’ve read that a class of 500 was graduated from the first training program.

    Check out Eaglespeak for his last posting regarding MV Arctic Sea. The BBC is reporting that Israel told Moscow that the ship was carrying a cargo of S-300 SAMs (I placed a link to that in the comments).

    Otherwise, there is the matter of the three Seychelles hostages and the two facilitators still being held in Somali Puntland.

    Somalia: Briton, Kenyan held over pirate swap

    MOGADISHU, Somalia — Two security contractors and three former hostages released by Somali pirates are facing prison for an alleged secret plan to swap the hostages for 23 suspected pirates on a desolate Somali airstrip, Somali officials said Wednesday.

    http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5gB7YMEDuCwwY9ncDOtPAkEI4-H2wD9AJUTPG1

    Puntland plans to free sailors from Seychelles

    BOSASSO, Somalia, Sept 9 (Reuters) – The Somali region of Puntland plans to release three sailors from the Seychelles it detained this week and accused of being part of an illegal prisoner swap, an official said on Wednesday.

    http://www.reuters.com/article/africaCrisis/idUSL9714517

  2. Mike Burleson permalink*
    September 9, 2009 8:38 am

    Good thing! The Somali people are tired of anarchy even if the International Fleet offshore isn’t. Now I hear they are training their own naval force.

  3. September 9, 2009 1:01 am

    Wait… Huh? What?!?! Nearly two dozen Somali pirates aboard a Seychelles aircraft were detained at Nairobi’s international airport. Twisted and twistier, it seems this tale continues to grow…

    “The pirates were permitted to fly out of the country on Sunday and a Kenyan air charter company supplied a Bombardier Dash 8 aircraft for the group.

    However, it now appears that after being released in Kenya and cleared for their homebound flight to Somalia, they have been arrested upon their arrival along with aircraft crew.”

    Somali pirates arrested on arrival

    http://www.eturbonews.com/11563/somali-pirates-arrested-arrival

  4. September 8, 2009 4:41 pm

    Mike,

    Eagle1 is back with more reporting regarding the MV Arctic Sea and suspected S-300 SAMs being secretly shipped to Iran. It does appear to be a never-ending story…

    BTW, I don’t have a website and yet there’s an invalid one displayed (for me) whenever I write a comment. It’s listed as “http://Corvetteweaponsfit” and yet there is no such site. Perhaps it should be deleted.

  5. Mike Burleson permalink*
    September 7, 2009 8:29 pm

    DE, sounds like a whole lot of corruption going on.

  6. September 7, 2009 4:28 pm

    I suppose someone important in the Puntland government didn’t receive his perceived justly due allotment of ransom cash. That’s even if no ransom was paid…

    Seychelles sailors freed by pirates, then arrested

    http://www.reuters.com/article/latestCrisis/idUSL7626699

    Somali pirates free three Seychellois hostages

    http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5jU9dsgI1-R-azCu2GWOjCcagr4bQ

    Somali govt detains hostages freed by pirates

    http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5gB7YMEDuCwwY9ncDOtPAkEI4-H2wD9AIELG00

  7. Mike Burleson permalink*
    September 7, 2009 10:07 am

    Thanks Mr Elto. Very interesting commentary!

  8. Mr. R. Elto permalink
    September 7, 2009 8:45 am

    This is a total screw-up by the Seychelles Government. They were holding 23 hostages while the Somalians were holding 3 Seychellois hostages! The Attorney General of Seychelles (a guy by the name of Govinden) tried to make a case to prosecute the pirates, but obviously he should have known that he did not have enough evidence to do so. If you are going to exhange 23 prisoners for 3, you’d better find a safe haven to do so and not mess the whole thing up like they have. Apparently, even the Kenyan authorities were not aware of what was going on and the flight was illegal.

    One last point. I have followed Seychelles politics ever since America opened up a US base there in the late 60’s. The present Government headed by Presidnent James Michel and his predecessor President Albert Rene both favor communism over capitalism. In the 70’s, they used to march in the capital telling the Yankees to go home. WIth the help of communist African dictators, Russian trained soldiers from Tanzania and North Korea, and the former Soviet Union, they took over the country in a bloody coup in 1977 and disposed of President James Mancham who was pro West (USA and England). The Government of Michel and Rene terrorized its own people, forcing many to seek asylum in UK, South Africa, Canada and Australia. These 2 despots have amassed millions in overseas bank accounts along with other close members of their family and have robbed the country which is today bankrupt and under close IMF supervision. The Seychelles Armed forces is there simply to protect these two and the people are crying out for democracy and freedom of the press and expression. I have personally visited Seychelles on 4 occassion, and it is clear that the people are still oppressed and that elections are fraudulent and the party in power is not representing its people properly.

    In summary, the USA should be very careful of Michel as he has sided with Communist China in the past years and Hu Jintao visited Seychelles last year. CIA should be deployed out there with our troops to get the real story that is going on behind the scenes. Michel and Rene have communist blood in them and the Obama administration should be wary of that fact. If thye give aid to Seychelles, they should push for democracy as well. AFter all, it is our taxpayers money that will pay for the drones and it is our troops who will be deployed out there. The Indian Ocean is vital to the USA and also remember that our base in Diego Garcia is not that far from Seychelles. The war against Islam radicals is one thing, but the war against communism and oppression is not over yet.

  9. Mike Burleson permalink*
    September 7, 2009 4:52 am

    I didn’t know that about the Seychelles’ politics. Thanks for the update. My initial thought on the Reaper is how a few UAVs would displace the need for many warships on occasion. These little craft which are practically glorified aircraft models!

  10. September 7, 2009 1:17 am

    The most embarassing situation beyond this is the USA and Obama Administration sending drones to help a communist administration that is anti -USA in the first place.

    The least Obama could have done is to impose some democratic credential hurdles for these left wing USA bashers in Seychelles. At least it would have helped the Opposition there that have to face AK-47”s with nothing but ballpoint pens.

  11. September 6, 2009 9:08 pm

    Campbell,

    Yeah, I read several articles about that. A Navy-led detachment with Air Force Reapers is to make up the force. There are to be 65 to 70 personnel in place by late September at the main commercial airport in the Seychelles. The Reapers are to be unarmed. They’re being tasked with traditional scouting and not any form of interdiction.

  12. September 6, 2009 8:55 pm

    Family first. Wish you and yours well.

    Read an article about Reapers for BAMS soon basing out of Seychelles; as well.

  13. Mike Burleson permalink*
    September 6, 2009 8:46 pm

    Thanks for the update DE! I’ll try to get up to speed on all the comments tomorrow.

  14. September 6, 2009 8:27 pm

    Mike,

    Welcome back from your emergency. I hope that it wasn’t too harrowing.

    Leaving aside Battleships, CVLs, and MV Arctic Sea – it would appear that the Somali pirate problem has just taken another twist. Earlier today there was a report that the government of the Seychelles was releasing 23 Somali pirates due to lack of evidence in pursuing prosecution of them. Now, the government of Somali Puntland appears to have seized two Seychelles aircraft with freed Seychelles hostages aboard and headed for Kenya. Purportedly, the Seychelles hostages had been freed by Somali pirates when the Seychelles government returned those ‘unprosecutable’ pirates to Puntland.

    Here’s a short list of who’s gonna be annoyed over what’s happening in Puntland:

    France
    Kenya
    Seychelles
    U.S.A.

    Somalia: Puntland ‘seizes Kenya-bound planes that transported pirate suspects’

    http://www.garoweonline.com/artman2/publish/Somalia_27/Somalia_Puntland_seizes_Kenya-bound_planes_that_transported_pirate_suspects.shtml

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