US vessel 'shoots at Suez boat' (BBC News)

SN NewsCaster
25th March 2008, 00:50
A US container ship opens fire on a small Egyptian boat in the Suez Canal, killing one man, Egyptian reports say.

More from BBC News... (http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/rss/news/int/search/news%2Bsport/ship/-/2/hi/middle_east/7311992.stm)

Keltic Star
25th March 2008, 03:36
A US container ship opens fire on a small Egyptian boat in the Suez Canal, killing one man, Egyptian reports say.

More from BBC News... (http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/rss/news/int/search/news%2Bsport/ship/-/2/hi/middle_east/7311992.stm)

Someone needs to tell the US Navy that it's not cricket to shoot George Robey's bum boat out of the water.

I'm sure all they wanted to do was sell a few camel stools, a genuine Rolex watch with 25 jewels and the odd picture of some oriental gentleman dressed only in a pair of black socks getting his leg over.

AncientBrit
25th March 2008, 06:26
How sad! How pathetic that people like that are trusted with fire-arms.
AB

Coastie
25th March 2008, 06:37
Ridiculous.

Ngaio 62
25th March 2008, 07:25
Sounds like a Blackwater job to me

G0SLP
25th March 2008, 09:17
Nah, it probably had the Port Captain & Senior Pilot on board; most bum-boats seem to...

John Rogers
25th March 2008, 14:20
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20080325/ap_on_re_mi_ea/egypt_us_navy

ghq
25th March 2008, 14:48
Someone needs to tell the US Navy that it's not cricket to shoot George Robey's bum boat out of the water.

I'm sure all they wanted to do was sell a few camel stools, a genuine Rolex watch with 25 jewels and the odd picture of some oriental gentleman dressed only in a pair of black socks getting his leg over.

George Robey! There's a name I've not heard for some ( in fact a great number of,)years. Does Jock McKay ring any bells?

Peter Fielding
25th March 2008, 15:00
George Robey! There's a name I've not heard for some ( in fact a great number of,)years. Does Jock McKay ring any bells?

Certainly it's been a long time, but wasn't it Jock McGregor?

John Rogers
25th March 2008, 17:40
How pathetic it would of been if the small boat would have been loaded with TNT,remember the Cole's incident,17 sailors killed. They were warned more than once,the others backed off he didnt. Think of what would of happend if he did blow up the ship blocking the canal causing havoc in the canal.

John

James_C
25th March 2008, 18:31
When I was in Suez in December we had two bum boats actually moor themselves up to a couple of eyelets in our hull and then proceeded to offer their wares - and we had 8 armed Matelots aboard on STAG.
It took sustained shouting and much pointing both as they approached and once they moored up to convince them they weren't wanted - some bumboat men are more determined than others. Our lads didn't feel the need to do any more than 'look mean' and the situation was a non event - they were well briefed as to what they should expect and acted accordingly.
Of course this isn't the first time the USN have made the news in this regard - one of their Ticonderoga class Cruisers threatened to open fire on a cross river passenger ferry on the River Clyde (Scotland) a year or two ago, apparently because it 'got too close'.
Perhaps people aren't being briefed as they should be, or that there is a lack of local knowledge being passed on.
As the report acknowledges, the locals all know to stay away from the Grey ships and they invariably do (although they were invited aboard HMS Ark Royal a couple of years ago and set up stall on the flight deck), however how are they to know when it's a merchant vessel on Govt charter? They WILL assume it's a normal merchant ship and WILL try their luck.
While the attack on the Cole is a timely reminder of what could happen, a similar attack on a merchant vessel would most likely not have the same disastrous consequences*. Todays merchant ships generally have a higher freeboard than your average warship and most are equipped with wing ballast tanks/void spaces between the cargo holds and hull. Again, unlike a warship it is unlikely many crewmembers would be within the immediate vicinity of the strike point since their living/working spaces are above decks/away from the waterline.
Hopefully lessons will be learned on both sides from this sorry affair.

*The Limburg incident is a cause in point - the ship remained afloat without terminal damage, although sadly one crewman was killed.

doyll
25th March 2008, 19:40
BBC report give Egyptian, US and Global Patriot reports. I have no reason to believe one rather then the other... or believe either one. Boat was warned along with other boats. Other boats stayed back and one came right on in. Sounds like Global Patriot was only protecting herself to me as she had no way of knowing if it was a suicide boat and it did not stay away as instructed. If anyone was hurt or killed, I am sorry.

Chouan
25th March 2008, 20:57
Even if it was a suicide attack, how much damage was likely to have been caused? Too many apologists for trigger-happy Americans, I think.
As James C suggests, not enough intelligence, of both types, resulting in yet another American public relations disaster in the Middle East, yet more ammunition for Al-Quaeda, more tragic loss of life, more American self-justification, causing yet more anti-American feeling.
Will they never learn?

doyll
25th March 2008, 21:15
As it stands now, you are right Chouan. But is Egyptian report any more truthful then US report? I don't believe either report. BBC didn't say what happened. BBC only reported what both sides said happened. We don't know that there was any "loss of life". We only have statement that contradict each other, and are self serving to each side making the statement. If I was aboard a ship with 3 or 4 boats approaching being told them to stay way or be fired upon in their native language all turned back but one that kept coming, I would have serious doubts as to the intentions of that boat. Wouldn't you? Would you let it keep coming and possibly explode and damage your ship? I hope not.

I am in no way justifying US actions in Iraq and other places now or in the past. but only an idiot don't heed warnings to stay away from armed personnel who say they will fire at them if they approach.

Chouan
25th March 2008, 22:39
But are all Egyptian bum-boat men intelligent? If a Merchant Ship says "stay away or we'll fire at you" would they necessarily take them seriously? Most would I'll grant you, but, as the saying goes, there's always one! Even if we take the US story at face value, how recognisable and obvious would armed men be on the deck of a ship of that type and size to people on a bum-boat?

Mike S
25th March 2008, 22:58
Regardless of the rights or wrongs of the incident I will bet London to a brick that not too many "McGregors" will ignore the warnings of a 50 cal pointing at their adam's apple in future.
Which tends to support the use of the odd round in this case.

doyll
25th March 2008, 22:58
Good point. As for ship firing and killing, well, warning shots are SOP. I suspect they are intelligent enough to back off when they hear gun fire and see bullets hitting the water near them.

Quote from Egyptian report:
" "We are praying over his body right now," Abbas al-Amrikani, the head of the union of seamen in Suez, told AP news agency, over audible sounds of prayer.

"I saw the body. The bullet entered his heart and went out the other side." "

Sound like propaganda to me.

Mates have told me of using firehoses to keep from being boarded in Suez... on both civian and military ships.

I'm not taking sides. We don't have enough facts yet.. May never have enough to know what really happened.

John Rogers
26th March 2008, 00:35
A quick way to find out the truth is for the US to tell Egypt produce the evidence or we will stop the millions of dollars in aid they give Egypt every year.
Anyone that has lived or been in that area for any length of time is aware that any injury or death is always followed up with a large claim.$$$$$$$$$$.

Old George Robey is counting the dollars as we speak.

John.

MARINEJOCKY
26th March 2008, 01:10
Even if it was a suicide attack, how much damage was likely to have been caused? Too many apologists for trigger-happy Americans, I think.
As James C suggests, not enough intelligence, of both types, resulting in yet another American public relations disaster in the Middle East, yet more ammunition for Al-Quaeda, more tragic loss of life, more American self-justification, causing yet more anti-American feeling.
Will they never learn?

I can not believe you wrote this, what would have happened if it had been a suicide boat and had blown the side of the engineroom open, I guess in your mind killing a few engineers is no big deal. What would have happened if they blew up next to a gas tanker, it would be OK for them as they get their 60 Virgins.

I hope you are not teaching this rot to your students or if so that is what is wrong with Britain now. By the way America has now lost 4000 and if I was on that ship with a gun there would have been more than one dead.

Jock Mcgregor could go from being from Aberdeen or change to Geordie or a scouser as soon as he heard yoiur own accent.

cboots
26th March 2008, 02:00
As one who knows nothing whatsoever about this incident I can only make two observations: firstly the report seems to refer to a merchant vessel rather than a naval craft. If this is the case why did they have firearms onboard and why did they feel they had the right to use them against another unarmed vessel? Secondly I cannot help but notice a certain degree of callousness in certain of the above posts, only some "Gypo bumboat man" after all. I am glad that several other posts emphatically reject this view, but the fact that it is there speaks volumes as to why our world is in the state it is. I am sure that had the shooting been the other way around then the usual "bombs away" crowd would have been off and ranting, wearing their keyboards out.
CBoots

surfaceblow
26th March 2008, 02:43
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20080325/ap_on_re_mi_ea/egypt_us_navy
The article I read states that it was the US military on board the RO/RO ship that did the shooting of warning shots.
The last time I transit the canal in 2004 the ship I was on had a detachment of marines on board and was part of a convoy with navy ships, chartered ships, MARAD ships and MSC USNS ships.

Keltic Star
26th March 2008, 05:00
From the press reports and photographs I have seen, the Global Patriot was on short term charter to MSC and has a regular commercial vessel paint job. How would a bum boat man know that this was a military ship.

I certainly would not expect a "foreign" ship in my own home waters to threaten me with gunfire. In such a case, I would expect the authorities to impound the ship and charge the crew with illegal possession of firearms. Not that our R.C.M.P. would be bright enough to understand what action to take, they would probably Tazer the poor victim instead, as is their want.

AncientBrit
26th March 2008, 05:24
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20080325/ap_on_re_mi_ea/egypt_us_navy
The article I read states that it was the US military on board the RO/RO ship that did the shooting of warning shots.
The last time I transit the canal in 2004 the ship I was on had a detachment of marines on board and was part of a convoy with navy ships, chartered ships, MARAD ships and MSC USNS ships.

What gives them the right to use weapons in another nations territorial water? The US is presumably bound by the same international rules of conduct as everyone else, though I have to admit it does seem over the past few years that they do not consider this to be the fact.
AB

cboots
26th March 2008, 06:02
I think that Keltic Star has got it bang to rights in his post above. If it were an Egytpian vessel entering a US port, firing upon US persons, impounding of vessel and arrests would have been instantaneous with prosecutors demanding the death sentence I have not the slightest doubt.
CBoots

Ngaio 62
26th March 2008, 06:40
I suppose having someone on board who speaks Arabic would be too sensible.

surfaceblow
26th March 2008, 06:45
While I am not a security expert but I believe that the military types claim an exclusion zone around them. It may be time to rethink rules of engagement. http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9B0DE6DF1030F932A35752C1A9669C8B 63

IMHO a water hose is usually enough to gain the attention of some boat, a flare is hard to see unless it was night, a bull horn from the bridge of the RO/RO would be hard to hear over a bum boats engine going full bore.

Keltic Star
26th March 2008, 08:36
While I am not a security expert but I believe that the military types claim an exclusion zone around them. It may be time to rethink rules of engagement. http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9B0DE6DF1030F932A35752C1A9669C8B 63

IMHO a water hose is usually enough to gain the attention of some boat, a flare is hard to see unless it was night, a bull horn from the bridge of the RO/RO would be hard to hear over a bum boats engine going full bore.

I understand that the exclusion zone, if agreed, has to be operated by the host nations's military forces, not a bunch of gunslinging foreigners. In this case, the vessel was not even identifiable as a military ship

UmbornePirate
26th March 2008, 10:42
Placing armed military detachments on unmarked merchant ships is playing a dangerous game with some fundamental principles of maritime law. For a start it must call into question some aspects of the neutrality of trade and right of innocent passage of all merchant ships.

The 1888 Convention of Constantinople, subsequently modified by occasional United Nations resolutions, forbids Egypt from denying the use of the canal to shipping engaged in wars UNLESS that war is directed against Egypt, when they are fully entitled to deny the use of the canal to that nation. Unsurprisingly therefore Israeli traffic has rarely been allowed through the canal in recent times.

Whether a merchant ship firing upon an Egyptian National in Egyptian waters is an act or war against Egypt by the nation whose flag is on the stern is an argument with great potential for a long running legal and diplomatic dogs dinner. I am sure that Egypt will be pressed by some of its brother states in the Arab crescent who are keen to see less US activity in the middle east to take the matter seriously.

Interesting times to come.

Pirate

John Rogers
26th March 2008, 13:55
If you read the article there was Egyptian people on-board and they were on the loud hailer giving the warning,plus they were not civilians doing the shooting. It appears some of our members are making statements that do not relate to the article. The Canal authority knew of the rules and so did the bum-boats,some heeded the warning one did not and he paid the price. One has to be in a situation to understand,and to take the action they did, I have been in that situation and I would have done the same thing. Protect the ship and its crew. Yes its sad one man had to die,but he knew the rules and he was warned.

John.

James_C
26th March 2008, 14:02
If as mentioned before he knew that the vessel had an exclusion zone (since it wasn't painted grey and I doubt many of them read the latest Suez Nav Warnings) and that he heard the warning about the noise of the engine in his bum boat.
By the way, the US has now admitted one man was killed, and it seems he was actually killed by the warning shots themselves. Not much of a warning then?

US admits to Suez canal killing

US officials have said an Egyptian was killed when a ship contracted to the US navy fired warning shots at approaching boats in the Suez Canal on Monday. US officials had previously maintained that there were no casualties.
Mohammed Fouad was buried on Tuesday amid expressions of anger against the Egyptian government and the US.
A US embassy statement issued on Wednesday said: "It appears that an Egyptian in the boat was killed by one of the warning shots."
According to the US account of the incident, the Global Patriot - on short-term charter to the US military - was approached by several boats as it prepared to enter the Suez Canal after dark on Monday.

Warning shots were fired from the ship.
"The boats were hailed and warned by a native Arabic speaker using a bullhorn to warn them to turn away. A warning flare was then fired," the embassy statement said.
"One small boat continued to approach the ship and received two sets of warning shots 20-30 yards in front of the bow."
Egyptian officials and witnesses say that two others were injured in the shooting.

Hawkers
According to the US Navy's Military Sealift Command (MSC), the Global Patriot is a US-flagged roll-on, roll-off container ship chartered from Global Container Lines.
In is used by the MSC to transport US military equipment around the world.
The BBC's Heba Saleh in Cairo says fisherman and small boats carrying hawkers ply the waters of the canal trying to sell cigarettes and other local products to ships passing through.
Al-Qaeda militants have in the past used small motorboats to attack US military and other foreign vessels in waters off the coast of Yemen, our correspondent adds.
Some 7.5% of world sea trade passes through the Suez Canal, which is 190km long (118 miles) and 120m wide (395ft) at its narrowest point.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/7314225.stm

lochluichart
26th March 2008, 14:07
I have always been astounded by the fact that when trying to visit a ship in Port Said one is subject to so much security checks. It takes 24 hours to obtain a gate pass and for this one's passport has to be submitted to the authorities.
But there are so many "traders" and bum boats descend on the ships both in the port and in convoy. There seems to be no control on them. Even with port police on gangway watch we also mount our own watches and security.

Maybe now there will be a tightening, but for how long?

AncientBrit
26th March 2008, 17:00
First we have warning shots fired 20-30 yards ahead of small boat, now we have occupants of boat getting hit by shots. If whoever pulled the trigger doesnt have his sorry ass hauled up on charges of murder, I hope the US military at least send him back to the gunnery class for some basic fire-arms training. That some would have us believe, while a wife is burying her husband, that this was all an exercise of smoke and mirrors to obtain the Mighty US dollar, is classless in the extreme.
The sad outcome from this CF is that if they hadn't thought of it before, you can bet money on the fact that Al-Qaeda is now giving much thought to the fact that it is mainly non-Moslem shipping that uses this confined waterway.
AB

doyll
26th March 2008, 19:32
I suppose having someone on board who speaks Arabic would be too sensible.
Read the reports. It was an Egyptian native speaking Arabic on a bullhorn that warned the bum boats off.. and all but one boat stopped approaching.

Report claims incident occurred at dusk/night and a flare was fired along with the bullhorn warning.

Reports originally claimed warning shots were fired, but now say one killed and 2 injured. Either bum boat didn't turn back when warning shots were fired or no warning shots were fired.

It looks like the US just FUBARed again.

doyll
26th March 2008, 19:37
Keep in mind there are many "military personnel" who are not active military, but are contract military personnel... aka mercenaries, and operate with different rules then real military personnel. There are many UK mercs in Afghanistan now. Don't know about Iraq or doing security on ships in middle eastern waters.

surfaceblow
26th March 2008, 19:48
I do not think shots fired in the water would be enought to see at night or dusk. The attached picture is a 50 cal fired off a RO/RO that I was on.

Chouan
26th March 2008, 19:48
I hope you are not teaching this rot to your students or if so that is what is wrong with Britain now. By the way America has now lost 4000 and if I was on that ship with a gun there would have been more than one dead.


Then it's a good thing that you weren't there, isn't it.

Could you also explain what "this rot" is that I'm teaching? Its not clear from your statement what you mean.

doyll
26th March 2008, 20:19
I do not think shots fired in the water would be enought to see at night or dusk. The attached picture is a 50 cal fired off a RO/RO that I was on.
Your pic has so many white-caps how can anyone see anything hitting the water? With or without tracers? At what angle?

I've seen 30's (7.62) and 50's fired many times. From height of deck of Global Patriot firing 50 meters out a short burst would be visible. Farther then that depends on many other conditions.

Bottom line with what limited information we have, other bum boats took warning and stayed away. One did not. Simple logic is why didn't last boat stay back when the others did?

We simply don't have enough data to figure out what and how it happened. We data we have doesn't make sense. Too many contraditions and blanks.

Derek Roger
26th March 2008, 21:30
How pathetic it would of been if the small boat would have been loaded with TNT,remember the Cole's incident,17 sailors killed. They were warned more than once,the others backed off he didnt. Think of what would of happend if he did blow up the ship blocking the canal causing havoc in the canal.

John

Well said John ;
The people having a go at the Americans have never seen combat or been in a combat Zone . How would they know how to respond to a threat ??

Regards Derek

surfaceblow
26th March 2008, 21:36
The height of the deck would be about 30 meters up from the water line. I was told that the practice shots are about 50 meters from the ship.

benjidog
26th March 2008, 22:41
I agree with those that say we should not try and make judgements without the full facts. People are too ready to think the worst of anything related to the US.

I have to say that if I felt that my ship and crew were threatened by potential terrorists and the options were to take action or hope for the best I know what I would do.

Brian

Chouan
26th March 2008, 23:37
Well said John ;
The people having a go at the Americans have never seen combat or been in a combat Zone . How would they know how to respond to a threat ??

Regards Derek

Can we assume that the Americans involved have? Can you assume that we all haven't? You are giving killers the benefit of the doubt. It should be the other way round.
I would like to think that the armed Americans have been trained to deal with such circumstances.
Perhaps if the man killed had not been an Egyptian bum-boat man, our membership might be reacting a little differently.
I for one, am saddened by the reaction of our membership to this event, which shows a callousness and disregard for peoples' lives that I am ashamed to read.

K urgess
26th March 2008, 23:40
I thought it was innocent until proved guilty.

benjidog
27th March 2008, 00:15
Can we assume that the Americans involved have? Can you assume that we all haven't? You are giving killers the benefit of the doubt. It should be the other way round.
I would like to think that the armed Americans have been trained to deal with such circumstances.
Perhaps if the man killed had not been an Egyptian bum-boat man, our membership might be reacting a little differently.
I for one, am saddened by the reaction of our membership to this event, which shows a callousness and disregard for peoples' lives that I am ashamed to read.

I don't think the nationality of the person who was shot has anything to do with it; it is all about risk assessment. If the Americans acted illegally they should be tried and sentenced in accordance with the law.

I don't see anything callous here at all and in fact most of the posts appear to be in favour of finding the US guys guilty without consideration of the evidence.

Brian

Santos
27th March 2008, 00:45
I am afraid trigger happy comes to mind ( sorry USA members ) but the US record on friendly fire is not a good one, we British know that to our cost, having sustained numerous losses to US fire in War Zones. I am afraid nothing surprises me now, with regard to friendly fire casualties and the U.S. Again apologies to US members.

Chris.

cboots
27th March 2008, 00:52
As I said in my earlier post the sheer callousness of some of the posters leaves me cold. When the loss of a human life is justified in terms of "the rules", or "risk assessment", then I for one hold out little hope for our world. May I just add that I was having a little bet with myself as to how long it would be before the "anti-American" argument got trotted out. I knew it wouldn't be long.
CBoots

AncientBrit
27th March 2008, 01:36
Well said John ;
The people having a go at the Americans have never seen combat or been in a combat Zone . How would they know how to respond to a threat ??

Regards Derek

Immoderate and unsubstantiated statement
AB(Smoke)

doyll
27th March 2008, 08:08
The middle east is a dangerous place for westerners to be in regardless of nationality. I find it interesting that British citizens (and other tourists) on holiday in Egypt are under guard by by special "armed Tourist police" for their safey. Yet a ship that fires on a bum boat that keeps advancing toward ship after being warned to stay away is considered a agressive act on the part of the ship. Could the anti-American member posting give us some facts proving their claims? I can't find any facts proving claims by either side except 1 Egyptian was killed and 2 injured on a boat that kept advancing when others took warning and turned back.

AncientBrit
27th March 2008, 08:20
You guys really do not get it do you? The crux of the matter is that he was an Egyptian, on an Egyptian boat, in Egyptian national waters. He had every right to be there, every right in international law to expect to be able to go anywhere in his country that he chooses. Period!
Might may make you right, but it loses you a lot of friends.
AB

cboots
27th March 2008, 13:10
Very well put AncientBrit. As I made perfectly clear in my first post on this thread I am not aware of the finer points in this case, to the best of my knowledge it was not reported here in Oz, my reactions were to the attitude of some of the other posters, that the loss of this life was somehow okay. That I cannot except.
CBoots

K urgess
27th March 2008, 16:54
You try ignoring a warning to stop from an armed policeman at Heathrow.
You try ignoring a warning to go away from an American guard on an airbase in this country.
You try going into some areas of military importance either naval or land based in this country and ignore request to stop or to withdraw.

John Sansom
27th March 2008, 17:16
Bum boats are a fact of life in ports throughout the world. Beyond verbal warnings to shear off, the firehose as a first physical option seems to be pretty much OK. Still, the 50 cal "advisory" is understandable given the overall history of nasty explosive surprises in that huge area we call the Middle East. Sadly, this sort of stuff is going to happen again and again, and we're all going to try to second guess each instance.

AncientBrit
27th March 2008, 17:46
You try ignoring a warning to stop from an armed policeman at Heathrow.
You try ignoring a warning to go away from an American guard on an airbase in this country.
You try going into some areas of military importance either naval or land based in this country and ignore request to stop or to withdraw.

The first is by an officer of the law in the country in question, the others are
all pertaining to restricted military installations.
That you equate this with a man doing in his own country, that which he has done apparently for several years, approach an unmarked civilian cargo vessel and that it is apparently his fault that he got shot, quite frankly amazes me. Whether by his own stupidity and ignorance, or by the stupidity and ignorance of others, a man is tragically taken from his family and that is as final and long lasting as anything on this earth. Please dont try and justify that.
AB

LEEJ
27th March 2008, 18:03
I agree with those that say we should not try and make judgements without the full facts. People are too ready to think the worst of anything related to the US.

I have to say that if I felt that my ship and crew were threatened by potential terrorists and the options were to take action or hope for the best I know what I would do.

Brian

Brian,
read Rogue State and Killing Hope by William Blum and look up the recent Winter Soldier conference. These are just a couple of examples.

Rgds,
LeeJ

K urgess
27th March 2008, 19:36
The point was about warnings.
A British person going about his lawful occasions in a public place like Heathrow may just get shot exactly the same as an egyptian person going about his lawful occasions on the Suez Canal may get shot.
You only have to look at 7/7 and London to see what can go wrong.
I'm sure legitimate or otherwise bumboats in the Suez canal know that merchant vessels passing through can be armed. It's not as if they've only just started doing it. It's been going on for years.
I have no opinion as to whether the Americans were in the wrong or the Egyptian bumboat was in the wrong.
I find it justifiable to have armed guards on board civilian vessels when passing through such an area. Not just the Canal but passing down the Red Sea.
I would find it strange if the Egytptian authorities didn't know this was happening. The alternative would be placing armed Egyptian forces on the vessels for security reasons.
I'm sure if the bumboat hadn't been shot at and it had blown a hole in the vessel we would now be discussing the ramifications of a closed canal and how the sunken vessel will be removed.

Chouan
27th March 2008, 20:50
I don't think the nationality of the person who was shot has anything to do with it; it is all about risk assessment. If the Americans acted illegally they should be tried and sentenced in accordance with the law.

I don't see anything callous here at all and in fact most of the posts appear to be in favour of finding the US guys guilty without consideration of the evidence.

Brian

Here's an example of what I mean:

"Anyone that has lived or been in that area for any length of time is aware that any injury or death is always followed up with a large claim.$$$$$$$$$$.

Old George Robey is counting the dollars as we speak."

Would anybody have written anything approaching that if the victim had been European, or American? It was on page one of this thread.

surfaceblow
27th March 2008, 21:16
The victims here are Muhammad Fouad Afifi age 28, his wife two children and his other family members. Muhammad Fouad Afifi was a licensed trader.

"The merchants who ply the canal selling cigarettes and other products to passing ships normally know not to approach military vessels, said the victims brother, Abdallah. But he said that the Global Patriot had looked like a civilian ship."

Bush apologizes to Mubarak for Suez shooting
http://www.iht.com/articles/2008/03/27/africa/27egypt.php

"We express our deepest sympathies to the family of the deceased," Vice Admiral Kevin Cosgriff, commander of the U.S. 5th Fleet, said in a statement issued to the media. "We are greatly saddened by events that apparently resulted in this accidental death. This situation is tragic and we will do our utmost to help take care of the family of the deceased."

http://www.iht.com/articles/2008/03/26/mideast/canal.php

capkelly
27th March 2008, 21:29
As an retired shipmaster I would be of the opinion that 1. This is the most patrolled waterway in the world so that terrorist attack is highly unlikely 2. Merchant ships have a right of passage in most contentious waterways because they are unarmed 3. If the US vessels Master felt that his vessel might be targeted he should have asked for Egyptian assistance ie their military to provide escort 4. the vessel should have been arrested for force majure in Egyptian waters. 5. It puts all other unarmed merchant vessels at risk for arms searches etc. at least, as if the job is not hairy enough. U.S. arrogance as usual they cannot be wrong.

Gavin Gait
27th March 2008, 21:53
At the time of the incident she was on charter to the US Navy Military Sealift Command and came under their operational control ( just as the gray painted USNS ships are ) so would have been considered part of the US Navies supply fleet. She was carrying a load of Military equipment in waters where extremist elements would take any chance they could to attack a US flagged ship. Being under US MSC orders she would have an embarked US Marine Crops protection unit , within International Law as being under contract and operational control she is in effect an official US MSC ship , and when our RN ships transit the Suez Canal it is our own sailors who man the guns not Egyptian service personnel.

Whether or not they should have opened fire I do not know , NONE of us do simply because NONE of us were there to witness what happened. Whether water hoses would have been enough we will never know but think of this , if she had been attacked and sunk in the middle of the channel blocking the canal for a month or more the repercussions would have been far far more serious. World trade would have suffered with ALL ships that would have taken the Canal having to go south about the cape adding a month onto delivery's of goods and cargoes.

As no one on here was there can I ask everyone to step back from the vitriolic anti-US statements that always seem to appear whenever anything involving the US happens. If the men who ordered the firing of weapons ( and those who pulled the trigger ) are in the wrong they should be arrested and charged , however , I do not place any weight in any of the press reports as I have seen extremes of bias in both directions from both the US press and the local middle eastern press.

Everyone is entitled to a fair trial , everyone must be considered innocent until proven guilty in a Court of Law. Some of the statements made in this thread seem to be suggesting that regardless of what really happened the American service personnel should be thrown in prison for life or put up against a wall and shot just because they are American.

Davie

MARINEJOCKY
27th March 2008, 23:37
I wonder what went through the mind of a young Brazilian guy leaving his apartment in London, catching a bus and then a train and then, was it six or seven shots into the head with no warning shots.

I guess the family sitting in Brazil loves England and the cops there.

It is real sad that the world has come to this but never mind about the sinking of a ship in the canal, what about the potential loss of life on any ship.

As for large money claims, the british are the laughing stock when it comes to paying prisoners compensation for not being able to deal their drugs in prison, how about the air force typist receiving 1/2 million for sore thumbs while the serviceman receive peanuts after being blown up.

Chouan
27th March 2008, 23:38
"Some of the statements made in this thread seem to be suggesting that regardless of what really happened the American service personnel should be thrown in prison for life or put up against a wall and shot just because they are American.

Davie Tait
Moderating Team"

Can you give us an example please? I've just gone through the whole thread and can't find a single comment that comes anywhere close to suggesting what you've said.

cboots
28th March 2008, 03:54
I know that it is beyond the scope of this thread, this site as well probably, and it will be my last comment on this sad affair, but it is the old, "you just hate America" argument. Make any criticism of American policies or actions and one is immediately attacked for being anti-US, and a hater of Americans. It saves one's accuser the effort of answering any of your original arguments and is a variation of the old debating trick of not answering one's opponent's actual argument, but answering the argument you would like them to have made. Or the English schoolboy answering the history exam question with, "I do not anything at all about Henry 11 but Henry V111 ..............." That is a more honest variation of it. It is intensely irritating but less so when you recognise it for what it is, intellectual laziness.
CBoots

notnila
29th March 2008, 00:56
I've followed this thread with equal measures of sadness and anger at some of the trite remarks made about the death of a working man,a husband and a father.I find it totally abhorant that ANY nations merchant ships think that they have the right to open fire while in another nations territorial waters.
Before I am accused of being anti-American,(as seems to be the usual counter from some),let me pin my colours to the mast,I AM MOST DEFINITELY ANTI-AMERICAN GOVERNMENT FOREIGN POLICIES!As are a sizable minority,if not a majority of U.S.citizens!!If this post breeches S/Ns" no politics"rule,Then I apologise for the breech,but not the sentiment.

Chouan
29th March 2008, 01:23
Can I echo Cboots post here. I've challenged 2 assertions so far and had no replies. I can only assume that the posters of those assertions either:
1) have no evidence no back up their assertion.
or
2) have on mature reflection realised that their initial comment was unsupportable and therefore have not defended it
There is nothing anti-American per se here. Anti American foreign policy, yes, but that is a different thing.

John Rogers
29th March 2008, 02:22
Twas I said the sparrow with my little arrow. Yes it was my post that referred to the money claim and George Robey. Not knowing your age and experience I can only guess that you have not been in any situation where you only have seconds to decide what action you take to save lives,I have been in that position a couple of times, Korea and Vietnam,and have been shot at doing it. Also many years ago 1947 -1948 while in the British Army camp at Fanara in the canal, local Arab's/Egyptians would take pot shots at us and sometimes jump on the back of lorries to steal,it was a well know policy to all the soldiers to make sure if you ran over one of the thieves make sure you killed him because it was cheaper to bury him than pay for his injuries.
I also mention in another of my post that any loss of life is sad in circumstances like this,but like it or not there is a war going on over there and one is trained to protect his ship and shipmates and no time for second guessing.
Nobody for sure knows what happened,but if I was in that position and those were my orders I would of done the same thing. I think that defends my position.

John.

Jim MacIntyre
29th March 2008, 04:27
Chouan - in my humble opinion I consider the following anti American :
#13 ' too many apologists for trigger happy Americans'
#27 ' a bunch of gunslinging foreigners'
#32 ' whoever pulled the trigger (doesn't) have his ass hauled up on murder charges'
#33 ' the US just FUBARed again'
#41 ' you are giving killer the benefit of the doubt'
#44 ' trigger happy comes to mind' and US record on friendly fire is not a good one;
#62 ' I am most definitely anti American government foreign policy'

Maybe I'm just thin skinned and can't take it..... while I find little joy in reading such comments I do respect the fact that everyone is entitled to an opinion and within reason is entitled to express that opinion in this forum.

In brief my own thoughts on this tragic incident are that it was the culmination of bad choices.

First bad choice was to ignore warnings that others had heeded and continue to approach the ship. Why? we will never know - probably a need to support and feed a family. Compelling reason? Yes. Given the stakes involved - No.

This first choice then puts the onus on someone else to make the second choice. However the first choice has disporortionately escalated the stakes. The person making the second choice is charged with the responsibility for the seciruty and safety of the ship and crew. Given the USS Cole incident and recent small boat activities around US warships in the Straits of Hormuz this becomes a very difficult choice.
Was the choice made to fire warning shots ? obviously yes - but a .50 cal machine gun is not the most docile of firearms. Could an intended warning shot have gone astray ? probably.

As a result there is a family in Egypt without a husband, father and breadwinner. That is a fact that cannot be changed.

There will be investigations and verdicts that will no doubt provide fuel for further discussion here and elsewhere.

In closing there was reference to money or $$$$ as it was put.
Nothing can change the facts of this tragedy, but there is the indisputable ability to provide for the survivors. Regardless that it may seem callous on the surface it is one way to compensate for the choices made.

Jim MacIntyre

Keltic Star
29th March 2008, 05:39
Chouan - in my humble opinion I consider the following anti American : ...........

#27 ' a bunch of gunslinging foreigners'
...................
Jim MacIntyre

Jim: I was very careful to avoid mentioning US citizens in my statement. It was intended to be a generic example referring to an illegal act of aggression in someone else's country.

However, if the shoe fits.............

doyll
29th March 2008, 10:50
Chouan - in my humble opinion I consider the following anti American :
#33 ' the US just FUBARed again'

Jim,

Here's is post you took FUBARed out of:

"Report claims incident occurred at dusk/night and a flare was fired along with the bullhorn warning.

Reports originally claimed warning shots were fired, but now say one killed and 2 injured. Either bum boat didn't turn back when warning shots were fired or no warning shots were fired.

It looks like the US just FUBARed again."

I stand by it. What do you call it when shooting happens US denies any wrong doing, then changes face and admits the killing? By denying then admitting US again shows how it claims innocents until proved guilty... as it has done over and over... and proves we the public can not trust anything they say without overwhelming proof backing it up.

Truth is key here. No trust, no credibility. No credibility, no respect.

Please go back and read my posts in this thread and you will see I am trying to find the truth of what happened, not condemn the US.

The US cannot be trusted (and they are not the only country).

MARINEJOCKY
29th March 2008, 15:38
I have seen no reply to my post regarding the shooting death of the young Brazilian guy, shot 6 times in the head with no warning shots!!!. In London.

In yesterdays British paper it reported that the British Ministry of Defense had admitted liability in the death of a father of two in Iraq and his family was in line to receive a million pounds.

"Chouan", I guess anybody who does not agree with your views has "no evidence to back it up". I think alot of us are "mature enough" to look at your back ground and see that you have never been in a position like those on the ship were in or those who you try and ridicule on this thread.

Your comment " Even if it was a suicide attack, how much damage was likely to have been caused? Too many apologists for trigger-happy Americans"
Makers me wonder what you teach the young people in your school.

Do you not think that everybody onboard that merchant ship would have been briefed on the dangers that could occur once they reached the canal and the rest of the way to the Gulf. That danger would have been enhanced by having to have armed guards on board and I would have been thinking about all of that every time I went to the engineroom.

"How much damage", who could tell, other posts have commented on the fact that trade could have been affected by a ship sinking in the canal, who cares about that, not me. I would have been caring much more about those onboard and the likelyhood of death or injury especially to those in the engineroom.

I had to write an advisory to our ships years ago about "repelling pirates" especially off Singapore and Lagos. I wrote to lay out fire hoses, tack weld
the lower deck doors but do not show any aggresion like having a fire ax handy. I was actually on board when the pirates came onboard and although it was mid day with us at anchor and blowing every horn possible and the old fire pump going flat out I sugested that we call those guys "sir" and let them have there way. Why because they all had machine guns.

Luckily they only wanted the electronics from the containers and no body was injured.

Later I asked why we had to pick up anchor and leave every night whereas the Russian ships stayed there and were never attacked. The answer was simple, the Russia's had bigger guns.

It is terrible about this young bum boat man and hopefully there will be lessons learnt on both sides just as there was hopefuly things learnt in London about shooting the Brazilian guy.

There is alot of disagreement regarding the war and the foriegn policies of our governments however there have been elections in both countries when things could have been changed but were not.

I called my Egyptian friend (ex Captain) in Cairo and asked him what was happening and believe it or not his repy was " so what he should have done as the others did". He actually had less concern than any of us and certainly no negative things to say about the Americans.

"doyll"

could you explain to an ex-pat who spent many a happy day in the British merchant navy and ended up sailing as a chief engineer at 25 and who now lives in America what FUBARed means. Also I have re-read the varius posts and do not see how you are trying to find the truth of what happened. You also state that you are "not condemning the US" yet in the very next line you state "the US can not be trusted".

King Ratt
29th March 2008, 16:25
George Robey reckoned one of his uncles lived in "Sotchie Hall Street" in Glasgow. Fine fellow, often brought flowers for the wives on board.

K urgess
29th March 2008, 16:49
Fouled Up Beyond All Recognition, Marinejocky.
That's the cleaned up version as is
Situation Normal, All Fouled Up

Salaams

LEEJ
29th March 2008, 16:54
FUBAR - F***ed up beyond all recognition.
e.g. USS Vincenes shooting down civilian Iranian airliner. Crew awarded citations.

Rgds,
LeeJ

John Rogers
29th March 2008, 16:54
Marinejockey your post says it all.

John.

Jim MacIntyre
29th March 2008, 17:03
I commented in this thread against my better judgement, I have no desire to get drawn into it any deeper.
Chouan stated he saw 'nothing anti American per se stated here' - I simply disagreed and presented examples as to why I disagreed.
There was no intent to be confrontational on the issue - it was merely an expression of my opinion. I also declared my respect for the opinion of others in the thread.
I added my own thoughts on the incident as being the result of a series of bad choices and my humanitarian interpretation of the money issue.
I'll leave it at that.

Jim MacIntyre

doyll
29th March 2008, 19:21
No problem Jim. Just wanted to make it clear that I'm not anti American just because I don't agree with everything America does.

FUBAR was because America released statement first day, then had to retract it when truth came out next day instead of gathering information about incident before making any statement.

MARINEJOCKY
29th March 2008, 20:40
My American friend came around today to watch the soccer (man utd / Villa) and I told him about this thread. He happens to disagree with the US foreign policy and he said that he knew about the shooting incident as he had received an email from his brother-in-law who was on a ship for the military sealift and he had heard that tensions were extremely high as the USS Cole was transiting the canal at the same time. I can not verify this but if so this may shed some additional light on this sad situation.

MARINEJOCKY
29th March 2008, 20:50
FUBAR - F***ed up beyond all recognition.
e.g. USS Vincenes shooting down civilian Iranian airliner. Crew awarded citations.

Rgds,
LeeJ

Did Castro's buddies in the old USSR get any citations for shooting down the Korean airliner. ?? and I am referring to the one they shot down in 1983 and not the one they also shot down in 1978.

notnila
29th March 2008, 22:25
If critisizing American Foreign Policy leaves one open to accusations of Anti-Americanism,(how I hate "Isms"),where does that leave around 50%of Americans???

MARINEJOCKY
30th March 2008, 00:36
If critisizing American Foreign Policy leaves one open to accusations of Anti-Americanism,(how I hate "Isms"),where does that leave around 50%of Americans???

Far from accusing you of being anti-american I have pointed out that the british shot a guy who was going about his business in London.

The member who posts a picture of Castro who is one of the last dictators left in the world along with his name pointed out that the Americans shot down an airliner and I merely pointed out that the USSR shot down 2 airliners, does that maker a difference in this case.

It may surprise alot of Brit's but the americans love the British even when they know there is alot of "anti-Americanism" and I am sure that if Britain was ever attacked the first nation to come to your aid and I presume the first nation you woiuld turn too would be the Americans.

Now besides all of that I would like to know if the USS Cole really did pass thru' the canal at the same time as the ship who shot at the bum boat.

I am sure it was Jock McGregor who was also the Gilly Gilly man and would cut your hair with you holding a broken mirror to check his progress. He certainly made his money back when I sailed as the style in the seventies was long and thick and many a time I ended up with a short back & sides.

Chouan
30th March 2008, 00:38
“Some of the statements made in this thread seem to be suggesting that regardless of what really happened the American service personnel should be thrown in prison for life or put up against a wall and shot just because they are American.”

This was the quote I challenged, so I’m afraid that your response, below, isn’t really a reply to the comment

“Can you give us an example please? I've just gone through the whole thread and can't find a single comment that comes anywhere close to suggesting what you've said.“

that I posted.

“#13 ' too many apologists for trigger happy Americans'
#27 ' a bunch of gunslinging foreigners'
#32 ' whoever pulled the trigger (doesn't) have his ass hauled up on murder charges'
#33 ' the US just FUBARed again'
#41 ' you are giving killer the benefit of the doubt'
#44 ' trigger happy comes to mind' and US record on friendly fire is not a good one;
#62 ' I am most definitely anti American government foreign policy' “

Marinejockey,

"Chouan", I guess anybody who does not agree with your views has "no evidence to back it up".

No, not at all. I’d just like to hear it, rather than just hear assertions.

“I think alot of us are "mature enough" to look at your back ground and see that you have never been in a position like those on the ship were in or those who you try and ridicule on this thread.“

Could you please show where I’ve tried to ridicule anybody? Could you please show from my profile how you KNOW that I’ve never been in a “difficult” situation? Relying on limited profiles to criticise members can put you in an embarrassing situation.

“Makers (sic) me wonder what you teach the young people in your school.”

I teach History. Which means that I teach them how to interpret and assess evidence, look for bias, and to think for themselves. I like to think that I’m good at it. One of my 6th formers got a place at Trinity, at Cambridge, last year, to read History, which I’m very proud of.

notnila
30th March 2008, 01:36
Marinejockey,I can't,and won't,try to justify the killing of an innocent Brazilian by the British Security Services.Both cases arose from the same mindset,"kill first,question later".The initial information from both sets of killers was wrong,and only corrected when the authorities realised that their versions of events were untenable.In both cases,ordinary working guys died!For what?Don't mess with me?I can get that attitude any Saturday night down in my local boozer!!

Jim MacIntyre
30th March 2008, 02:50
Chouan - my first post was not intended as a response to your challenge. It was, as clarified in my second post, in response to your statement that you found 'nothing anti American per se' in the thread. I did think some of the statements in the context of this particular thread to be anti American and listed those that I felt were examples.
We are gradually diverging from the original subject in this thread so I'm quite happy to leave this as a difference of opinion between us.

Jim MacIntyre

raybnz
30th March 2008, 08:11
I remember my late father telling me he was more afraid of the US Allies in WW1 than he was of the enemy. One sub he was on narrowly missed being hit by friendly fire.

Bearsie
30th March 2008, 11:22
Personally I think they were within their rights to shoot.
Also, I would point out tha NO sailor shot anyone but US Marines, aka military personnel.
The thing that irks me is that they never seem to be able to shoot Somali Pirates based on odd technicalities.
As one member rightly observed: "no one bothers Russian ships, because the hoodlums know they'll get shot at"
My conclusion then is that all Merchant ships should be armed.
Preferably with a Russian Marine since they shoot faster than their US Cousins! besides they work for less.

Perhaps the tragedy could have been avoided had the US the brains to ship their war supplies on Russian ships?
Going back to the Cold War, everyone knew that they Russians would say Stop only once and then shoot if you didnt stop. People acted accordingly.
Whereas Americans always had a reputation to be wishy-washy, leading folks to believe they could get away with something.
It is that "reputation" that causes tragedy more than anything else.
Btw: had the US Military personnel not shot at the boat and it would have blown up the ship with loss of life, many here would be asking: "how come they didn't shoot???
Can't have it both ways.....
My question is simply this: you ask 3 folks to back off, 2 do, 1 keeps charging?!? Your reaction, Please?!?

LEEJ
30th March 2008, 13:29
MarineJockey,
dont wish to drift away from original thread but nor do I like to leave opposing position unchallenged. Briefly, both Korean Air planes flying over Russian airspace, so room for some disagreement I think.

Cubans tend to vote in greater numbers than in US or Britain, so as for Castro as dictator? I would gladly continue debate by PM.

Rgds,
LeeJ

Sarky Cut
30th March 2008, 14:23
I have skimmed through the thread so I may have missed mention of the well known charactor at the Suez End, Indian John if my memory serves me correct.

Lets hear a round for him as well.

MARINEJOCKY
30th March 2008, 14:44
“Some of the statements made in this thread seem to be suggesting that regardless of what really happened the American service personnel should be thrown in prison for life or put up against a wall and shot just because they are American.”

This was the quote I challenged, so I’m afraid that your response, below, isn’t really a reply to the comment

“Can you give us an example please? I've just gone through the whole thread and can't find a single comment that comes anywhere close to suggesting what you've said.“

that I posted.

“#13 ' too many apologists for trigger happy Americans'
#27 ' a bunch of gunslinging foreigners'
#32 ' whoever pulled the trigger (doesn't) have his ass hauled up on murder charges'
#33 ' the US just FUBARed again'
#41 ' you are giving killer the benefit of the doubt'
#44 ' trigger happy comes to mind' and US record on friendly fire is not a good one;
#62 ' I am most definitely anti American government foreign policy' “

Marinejockey,

"Chouan", I guess anybody who does not agree with your views has "no evidence to back it up".

No, not at all. I’d just like to hear it, rather than just hear assertions.

“I think alot of us are "mature enough" to look at your back ground and see that you have never been in a position like those on the ship were in or those who you try and ridicule on this thread.“

Could you please show where I’ve tried to ridicule anybody? Could you please show from my profile how you KNOW that I’ve never been in a “difficult” situation? Relying on limited profiles to criticise members can put you in an embarrassing situation.

“Makers (sic) me wonder what you teach the young people in your school.”

I teach History. Which means that I teach them how to interpret and assess evidence, look for bias, and to think for themselves. I like to think that I’m good at it. One of my 6th formers got a place at Trinity, at Cambridge, last year, to read History, which I’m very proud of.

Chouan,

"have on mature reflection realised that their initial comment was unsupportable and therefore have not defended it"

I think most of us are "mature" on this thread and in my mind it is a put down to state the above. We have all responded to your arguements in one way or another.

A couple of replies were from ex military guys who stated that they had been shot at and I have been attacked by pirates twice.

I guess history classes must have changed since my day when I had to learn dates after dates of things I had no interest in except things about Hadrians Wall since it was down the road and Robert the Bruce because he had a party in our vilage.

LEEJ,

try living and working in South Florida and witness cuban families risking everything on old rafts to float 90 miles from Cuba to freedom when a 20 minute flight would get them past sharks, strong currents etc. then try telling me Castro is not a dictator.

BA204259
30th March 2008, 16:25
"All that is required for evil to prevail is for good men to do nothing."
-- Edmund Burke


Some thoughts after reading this for four pages:-

It is a crying shame that, in this year of 2008 we need a world policeman. The Americans perform this unenviable task and do so at great cost to themselves in the lives of their young men and much more. You may say that nobody asks them to do it and I would have to agree. Their administration may leave a lot to be desired (as does ours), I would have to agree. But is it really acceptable to allow the maniacs of this world, from Hitler to Saddam Hussein (and a lot more) a free hand in murdering hundreds of thousands of their countrymen because "it is not our business"? You may think so....

So what do all you idealists want? What do you think would happen if the Yanks turned inwards and refused to do anything in the future. Do you really think that would make a better world? If so, you must live in Cloud Cuckoo Land.

Nature abhors a vacuum. What do you think would happen if the US pulled out and decided to mind its own business. Do you really think it would be all sweetness and light and we would all live in the promised land? Who do you think would step in? China? Russia? Who? Without any doubt the vaccum would fill and do you think anybody would be better off? If there has to be a world policeman and, sadly, it looks that way, would you really prefer Russia or China over the Americans?

Yes, great wrongs are done, there are too many trigger happy people, innocent people (as always) are hurt and killed but anybody who thinks it would be different with another world policeman needs their bumps reading.

JimC
30th March 2008, 17:01
I am a little puzzled by the reaction to this incident - particularly from well travelled 'men(and women) of the world'. It seems to me that the enemies of the US should be delighted by some of the obvious, band-waggon anti-American sentiments. All of us know the US record on 'friendly fire', gung-ho actions etc. and should not be so ready to sound off negatively . Believe me! - a very great number of us would not be here to enjoy the freedom of such expression if it were not for some of those young 'gung-ho' Americans who gave their lives and continue to give their lives unselfishly. I think it was Karl Marx who wrote something like ' create panic and confusion and blame it on your enemies. The clever people and beneficiaries of this sad, sorry affair are those who can be sure that such a report will, without doubt, result in a 'band waggon' abundance of anti-american sentiment. It is written: ' Judge not less ye be judged in turn'.
There are probably many of our members who spent years in the then Canal Zone and know full well - sometimes to their personal injury - what can happen when tensions are high and weapons are available - to both sides!
I suggest that since it's early days - judgement should be withheld until the full, unabridged, unbiased story is known (ha ha ha!). Then blame can be directed properly if blame is necessary

twogrumpy
30th March 2008, 17:11
One thing for sure, I trust the Americans, yes with all their faults, more so than all our so called allies in europe.

Blue on Blue, in war **** happens, and we are at war.

twogrumpy

wigger
30th March 2008, 19:00
Re BA204259's comment "But is it really acceptable to allow the maniacs of this world, from Hitler to Saddam Hussein (and a lot more) a free hand in murdering hundreds of thousands of their countryman because "it is not our business"? You may think so....

Historically the answer would seem to be "YES....if its in our interests"

This is another thread without end and I don't want to stray too far from the subject of the thread but.....didn't we support and arm Saddam Hussein right up until the late 80's?

BA204259
30th March 2008, 19:26
Historically the answer would seem to be "YES....if its in our interests"

This is another thread without end and I don't want to stray too far from the subject of the thread but.....didn't we support and arm Saddam Hussein right up until the late 80's?

Absolutely right wigger, couldn't argue against that. Likewise look at the Taliban in Afghanistan being armed by the US. However, had the US ignored the plight of the Afghans following the Soviet invasion, I'm sure they would have received an equal amount of opprobrium to that which they receive now.
Another argument would be that the US (and ourselves in a much more minor way) are too selective of the causes they support, for example the wars and slaughter in Darfur, Liberia etc. have been largely ignored by the Western world.

Simple answer, I guess, is that that is the way it is. Even the US can't do everything and will, of course go where their main interests are. The other big powers would be no different.

Sadly, it is the way of the world and won't change in our lifetimes. But none of this detracts from the quote by Burke in my first post. (In my humble opinion of course!).

wigger
30th March 2008, 19:32
Hi BA204259 - you're absolutely right, sad but true.

Bearsie
30th March 2008, 19:38
Re BA204259's comment "But is it really acceptable to allow the maniacs of this world, from Hitler to Saddam Hussein (and a lot more) a free hand in murdering hundreds of thousands of their countryman because "it is not our business"? You may think so....

Historically the answer would seem to be "YES....if its in our interests"

This is another thread without end and I don't want to stray too far from the subject of the thread but.....didn't we support and arm Saddam Hussein right up until the late 80's?

Actually to the day he announced his intentions for Kuwait.
That crossed an invisible line, just like Noriega...
What's wrong with trigger happy Americans anyways?
If I recall correctly everyone offered them tea and strumpets ( or was it crumpets?) when they clambered up the beaches of Europe?
That seemed so popular that they were asked for an encore.....

BA204259
30th March 2008, 19:57
If I recall correctly everyone offered them tea and strumpets ( or was it crumpets?).....

.... or even both if you were lucky..[=P]

JimC
31st March 2008, 14:23
Some one wrote herein that it seemed that many correspondents in this thread had never sen action in the middle east. After reading this I'm absolutely sure of it. having seen not a little of it.. let me say here and now:
In a sticky situation, I'd rather have a 'gung ho yank' behind me than some of the people her who.. although are certainly not in the bloom of youth; never the less act as if they were the -'angry young men'of the Danny the Red or Tariq Ali - Sorbornne days. They too sounded off with high-sounding moralistic attitudes but then they had an excuse!

surfaceblow
31st March 2008, 16:09
Egypt will be installing cameras to achieve a better vision of all the movements of ships, vessels and small boats in the waterway.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20080328/pl_nm/egypt_canal_security_dc_1