Modern Piracy on Ocean Voyages Essay

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Are you concerned about pirate attacks on your ocean voyages? Although it may only seem like a good movie plot, the threat of piracy still exists. Nowadays, pirate incidents are often not covered in mainstream media. One researcher commented on the topic, saying that piracy has “…been romanticized in such films as Disney’s Pirates of the Caribbean” (Lunsford, “What Makes Piracy Work?”). Nevertheless, pirates have proved their aggressive behavior through history and their effects on society. Modern and past pirates share similarities and differences, and countries around the world are looking for ways to control the issue before it spreads.
The term “piracy” means the act of robbing or behaving with illegal violence at sea (“Piracy”).
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Today, piracy has resurfaced, but in smaller numbers. It is centered mainly around the Middle East on important waterways. For instance, Somalia and the Gulf of Aden are hotspots for pirates, because the passing cargo ships are full of supplies for African relief (May, Laura. “History of Piracy”).
These new pirates are similar to their predecessors in a variety of aspects. They are split up into two groups: those who work for themselves and others who have an alliance with a government. The most famously known group is currently known as the Somali pirates. They attempted to attack and capture the U.S. cargo vessel called Maersk Alabama in April 2009. However, they were fought off, and their one hostage, the ship’s skipper, was rescued five days later (Boot, Max. “Pirates, Then and Now”). Pirate techniques of stealing and escaping have not changed either. Sea robbers continue to elude the authorities by using state and country flags to become unrecognizable. Their ships are designed to be fast and easy to maneuver through coves and channels. On the other hand, technological advances have made it easier for ordinary ocean vessels to become victims of piracy. Wooden ships with shallow bottoms and cannons were ingenious a century ago, but speedboats have become the new pirate transportation. Somali pirates tend to have a larger, ‘mother ship’ used for deep ocean assaults (May, Laura.

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