The US Navy announced on the 23rd of May that they had developed a new weapon against pirates. I was disappointed to find out that it was not the East India Trading Company.
They are now using a mathematical model that calculates likely attacks based on weather conditions, shipping traffic, Jack Sparrow, etc. The result is a patchwork coloured map that details likely “shit happens” scenarios based on probabilities.
Piracy, in its truest profession not like the wimps on Pirate Bay, costs the shipping industry hundreds of millions of dollars a year. One company spokesmen said that his company alone expects to lose $200 million this year solely on preventative measures such as using larger ships, sailing faster, using detours, installing 12 inch cannons, and Russell Crowe (Master and Commander... anyone? Were there pirates in that? Please don’t make me watch it).
But if just one company is losing that much money, how about they all pitch in and buy a UAV? Would it not be better if an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle was patrolling the skies rather than a “paint the danger by colour” guessing game? Or, god forbid, fix the political and economical situation that would cause a Somalian to turn to piracy.
Piracy is big business and it has captured the imagination of the wider audience. That means only one thing, that there will be a feature film coming with Tom Hanks in the lead. Maybe Ron Howard directing. Let’s just hope that it stays big business and in the imagination of the masses, otherwise we will be stuck with Shia LaBeouf in the lead.