Obama to Pirates: Do You Feel Lucky, Punks?

OK, so President Barack Obama didn’t exactly quote Clint Eastwood as one of his predecessors, Ronald Reagan did back in the 80’s (“Make my day.”) but just the same Obama laid to rest any concerns that he might be, let’s just say it, a wuss.

NAIROBI, Kenya – Navy snipers on the fantail of a destroyer cut down three Somali pirates in a lifeboat and rescued an American sea captain in a surprise nighttime assault in choppy seas Easter Sunday, ending a five-day standoff between a team of rogue gunmen and the world’s most powerful military.

via Kidnapped US captain freed; snipers kill 3 pirates.

I’m not much of a hawk but I’ve been personally waiting with great anticipation for our Navy to blow these clowns out of the water. I was even at a point willing to sacrifice the poor Captain Richard Phillips who found himself taken hostage by the Somali thugs. My attitude has been that the United States will not be held hostage, particularly not by common criminals who don’t even have a political axe to grind. Fortunately, Obama was a bit more restrained than I would have been and ordered that force be used only if the Captain was in imminent danger. When Navy Seals spotted an AK-47 being pointed at Captain Phillips’ back, their snipers fired off shots aiming at the heads of the criminals. They scored three for three and the Captain is now safe and I could not be happier.

Unfortunately, this defiant organization of seafaring thieves has sharpened their rhetoric, declaring the United States an enemy. You know what? I could care less. I hope that we follow the French example from now on. When these delinquents capture our ships and take our men hostage, they should get bullets instead of ransom. We should blow their asses away every time.

It’s hard enough dealing diplomatically with recognized governments who are behaving badly. We don’t have time to be dilly-dallying with petty criminals. My message: When you screw with the United States of America, matey, it will be the last pirate games you ever play.

Respectfully,
Rutherford

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37 thoughts on “Obama to Pirates: Do You Feel Lucky, Punks?

  1. I’m not buyin’ it.

    As much as we all hate kidnappers, and felt relief when it was over, we have to look into the French/English colonialism of Somalia and why this place devolved into a hellhole of dysfunction.

    Very few are actually born sociopaths. Likely these criminals saw no other way to success, and saw also huge ships full of fat that they in their desert would never get, unless the stole it.

    I don’t excuse their actions, but if we had paid the TARP to Africa for the crimes of colonialism, likely this sort of thing would not be needed, and mountain gorillas would be safe.

  2. Can’t argue with this one. I agree and say, “Hooray for the Seals.”

    It is unbelievable to me today with all of our sophisticated technology, that we can’t put a quick stop to this piracy crap.

    Maybe this is a start.

  3. On a related note, there were a lot of armchair admirals who had announced with absolute certainty that Pres. Obama would never authorize the Navy to cut loose.

    It looks like that attitude needs to be rethought.

    So, I think that if Tex and I both agree with you, Rutherford, it comes pretty close to just plain objectively true, doesn’t it?

    As to Natureboy’s point … Yes, piracy is generally an act of desperation. I get that. Having said it, we have to deal with reality as it exists. If people want to get help to make up for the crimes of colonialism, there are ways to do it. Piracy isn’t on that list. The fact that the ship they took was full of relief supplies should speak to the point that what you’re saying just doesn’t check out.

    Pirates have to retire — one way or another — before aid becomes practical. Otherwise, opportunists simply steal all of the aid for their own gain. We’re not talking about Robin Hood here … pirates enrich themselves and a small number of friends and family, and let the rest of the poor suffer.

    Loss of life saddens me, but I’m not shedding too many tears over these guys. They made their own beds.

  4. My thoughts exactly, Rutherford. What saddens me is that we didn’t try to take out the pirates sooner. If Navy snipers can take out three pirates in less than five seconds, we could have easily taken them out without endangering the captain.

  5. #1..I disagree that piracy is an act of desperation. The failed state status of Somalia, which the USA actually has a modern hand in , is truly bad but to think a non failed state would somehow end insanely profitable endeavors such as piracy,gun human trafficking etc is just a little too naive for me.
    #2. Obama authorization… Well is it safe to assume he did indeed go the wuss route with the FBI garbage ? By the Law of the Sea the skipper of the Bainbridge was permitted to end this at his choice. I don’t say that to take anything from O but it must be said the whole deal isn’t the biggest prettiest feather in O’s hat.

  6. common criminals who don’t even have a political axe to grind.

    Natureboy, I did not put that phrase into my post as a throwaway line. If the pirates had been freedom fighters or political activists, demanding a just, non-corrupt Somalia in exchange for the hostages then I could have said, bad method, great motive. Then I might have had mixed feelings about the whole affair.

    That was not the case. You find me an instance where the money that wimpy nations have handed over to these pirates has gone toward anything but their self-enrichment and then you might have a case. Until then, they are common criminals who are playing Errol Flynn at great cost to others.

    By the way, since I try to stay away from profanity in my blog (thanks Rabbit LOL) I restrained myself from using the following alternative headline:

    Obama to Pirates: Happy Easter Motherf**kers!

  7. Alfie and Solar, I don’t fault Obama for taking a moderate stance at first and using the same type of negotiation method we would have used with hostage takers here at home. I don’t know anything about maritime law or rules but I think Obama was absolutely right in being restrained at first. Now admittedly, I did become impatient with the whole thing … five days was too much.

    Someone made a comment on the news today that cracked me up. We’re all so used to Bush’s swagger that when we don’t hear threats and ultimatums we assume nothing is going to happen. After today, our enemies will know that “President Obama is monitoring the situation” means that he is deciding when is the right time to unleash a can of wupass on the enemy. 🙂

  8. Actually Rutherford, I don’t think that the deaths of these pirates really struck fear into the hearts of our enemies. I’m glad Obama gave the order to take out the pirates if the captain was in danger, but that really wasn’t anything too extreme. 4 Pirates held off the several US WARSHIPS !!! That is like Boy Scouts holding off aliens with sling shots and squirt guns. The first day of negotiations should have been pretty simple, release the captain and we consider letting you live. Second day should have been that we refrain from torture. Third day, we should have attacked. If our snipers can get “three for three” in these conditions, it would have been easier in planned conditions. I was ready to sacrifice the captain to a point too, and I think the American people were as well. This conflict went from the Battle of Bladensburg to an Alamo.

  9. Sorry about taking so long to respond. I got whisked away to do a certain job next to the horn of Africa, of all places. Can’t get into the details. Just another day at the office so to speak. Anyways, what did I miss this weekend. I see the Tigers swept Texas.

  10. With all due respect, I’m not actually that bothered by the timetable.

    It seems like an unacceptably-long amount of time because we’re used to having the world’s problems wrapped up on the schedule of a 24-hour news cycle, or better yet in a half-hour sitcom.

    The pirates didn’t hold off the US Navy … they were sitting in an out-of-gas boat waiting to get shot.

    The situation was resolved perfectly, and trying to make it into a negative against Obama is a losing fight. Since no Americans were killed, the “but it shouldn’t have taken five days” line is sure to fall on deaf ears.

  11. I agree. wickle. 3 dead pirates and the American is free. I can’t believe people are finding something to complain about. The whole “Pirates holding off the Navy” comments are ludicrous. It was a hostage situation not the Battle of Thermopylae.

    Are pirates a pain in the ass? Yes. But America was never at any point being humiliated during this crisis. Far from it.

  12. Rutherford almost seems relieved that Obama didn’t turn over a Navy Ship to the Pirates AND 10 million dollars. ..

  13. Solar, I have to agree with the other folks in this thread. The pirates hardly “held us off”. We freely chose not to blow their asses away in the hopes of optimizing the Captain’s safe return.

    As luck would have it, one pirate gave up and the other three decided to play whack-a-mole except THEY were the moles. In the words of a military official on TV this morning, the pirates were “dumb guys … now they’re dead dumb guys.”

    So while you may think our actions did not send a message (I think they did), the pirates were hardly formidable opponents. It really makes me wonder why other nations are bending over and asking to be poked by these guys. Again, the French have the answer on this one. And now, we do too.

  14. Wickle and DR, regarding time table, you’re right on the money.

    Rutherford almost seems relieved that Obama didn’t turn over a Navy Ship to the Pirates AND 10 million dollars. ..

    To be perfectly honest, I was worried that Obama might not be able to tell the difference between sovereign nations and common thugs. He can be moderate to a fault. Once again, he came through! 😀

  15. Now we should follow up by launching a few thermobaric bombs through the front door of the pirate mansions built on the Indian ocean with the message, “Welcome to the big leagues.”

    If you don’t hit them at the source, these fools will be back. 👿

  16. Well, Tex, we know of three pirates who won’t be back.

    Seriously … yes, we do now have to go after the pirate communities. Based on the same concept that we seize assets from drug offenders, taking the prosperity out of piracy is the way to go.

    It might be hard to find pirates in little boats bobbing around in the ocean. Finding those houses, though, as you note, is a lot easier.

    This brings up all kinds of questions about the efficient allocation of our military, but it’s exactly what the US military is meant to do.

  17. We turned down an opportunity to have a “mother ship” come to the area. We shouldn’t have. We should have complied and given the pirates the coordinates and once you picked up the mother ship send it the regards of the USS Bainbridge ASW batteries.

  18. you voted for a guy who you thought might not make the correct distinction between pirates and sovereign nations?

  19. Tex …. this one is weak. They can walk and chew gum at the same time. Pretty dumb to exclusively focus on radical Islam and have a some right wing wing-nut do something stupid.

    I’d venture to say Obama’s security detail is the busiest of any President in history.

  20. You do realize that McVeigh was a proud registered Democrat and atheist, don’t you? And about the only thing I’ve seen past Presidential Dems do was run while chewing cud, not walk.

    Obama’s security detail is the busiest in history because he takes 500 of his toadies in tow for additional fawning everywhere he goes.

  21. Mea culpa – though raised in a Democratic home, I just discovered McVeigh a Libertarian and “agnostic”, once registered as ‘Republican’. Gulp. Or Libertarian was how he voted in the 1996 Presidential election.

    Don’t ask me how he was allowed to vote in 1996, but according to Wiki, he did.

  22. Ah Tex you found your error in a nick of time because the Research Division of The Rutherford Lawson Blog (i.e. my wife) had informed me of your confusion and I was about to pounce. Alas now I must credit you with coming clean.

  23. Tex returning for a moment to your Fed agency warns of radical right theme for a minute:

    I am blown away that one of the offshoots of this theme is that somehow we are targeting American Iraq vets with this finding. Utter nonsense. The finding states that Iraq vets are being targeted by the extremist groups in the hope of using their military skill against the US. If anything the finding is alerting folks that shell shocked demoralized vets (not all fall into that category) might be vulnerable to recruitment by these manipulative supremacist groups.

    This is the latest tactic of conservatives: to twist news in such a way so that their feelings have been hurt. Pathetic.

  24. Well, my compliments to your researcher. 😉

    I knew to come clean and I try not to lie. But I still haven’t figured out how McVeigh cast a vote from prison? Can you vote if you haven’t been convicted yet, I suppose? Now why would this killer want to vote in the Presidential election? Weird.

    Guess I’ll have to resort to why McVeigh did it to score a cheap shot.

    ———————————

    You wouldn’t believe what I did tonight. I had to go out to Chen’s spot and find an old exchange you and I had because I couldn’t find the article I wanted. I couldn’t remember exactly when we got acquainted, so I had to look through several threads before I found it.

    I read some of that old give-and-take. Man, we were nasty to each other! 😆

    Has the General entirely shut down his blog? I better check on the weasel sometime and make sure he hasn’t become a meth dealer.

  25. This is the latest tactic of conservatives: to twist news in such a way so that their feelings have been hurt. Pathetic.

    Your paranoia is setting back in “R” – almost as bad as that Bride of Frankenstein for a U.S. Department of Homeland Security Secretary. Man, that woman is hideous – like Ugly Kay hideous.

    Face it “R”. You libs are getting a little rattled about governors hinting a secession, tea parties in the hundreds of thousands, and talks of revolt. I know a few military folks that have about had it with tacit suggestions of militia and crap.

    I told you mean times were a coming – you ain’t seen nothing yet.

  26. When you voted for him you weren’t thinking at all…LOL.

    Maybe Obama will solve the problem by negotiating a deal with the moderate pirates.

  27. Somali pirates unsuccessfully attacked another US ship today.

    So if Obama sent a message, he’d better speak up, because these guys aren’t feeling him.

  28. I didn’t say we didn’t give a message, but I did say the message we gave wasn’t the strike of fear. Pirates are already declaring their thirst for revenge, and while I would assume a battleship is somewhat more powerful than a group of 4 pirates in a rowboat, our shipping isn’t invincible. And since we import however many billions of tons and export a couple billion less, I personally wouldn’t feel too secure.

  29. I read some of that old give-and-take. Man, we were nasty to each other! 😆

    LOL, if I recall there was one thread in which you called for my death by torture and I hadn’t even contributed to that thread yet! 🙂 Those were the good old days!

    As for the General, you know things are bad when your last post is a month old and is entitled “Zzzzzzzzzzz”. All I can hope is that his new priorities are making him happier than if he were blogging and who knows, maybe dealing meth falls in that category. 😉

  30. Alfie, yes I know they are and as I said earlier I hope we follow the French example and keep killing the bastards.

    I heard tonight that the French followed one pirate boat to its “mother ship” and then kicked their ass. I LOVE it.

  31. If you check into the facts off this incident you will find that obama delayed the shooting by 36 hours, because of the rules of ingagement. this could have cost the capt. his life.

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