Americans Re-Take Hijacked Tanker, Ninja Reportedly Absent (photo)

There was a recent attempted hijacking of a tanker off Somalia (again).  This one made the news because of the reported 21 Americans on board.

Turns out that wasn’t such a smart move by the pirates…

The US crew of a ship hijacked by pirates off the coast of Somalia has retaken control of the vessel, according to Pentagon sources.

Unnamed US defence officials said one pirate had been captured by the crew of the Danish-owned Maersk Alabama, which was seized earlier in the Indian Ocean.

The status of the other pirates was unknown, but officials said they were “in the water”.

[full story]

It looks like we even have an exclusive shot of the action, one which we here at Robot Pirate Ninja, find delectable.

The Rarely Seen Land Ninja finds a reading(!) Pirate.

The Rarely Seen Land Ninja finds a reading(!) Pirate.

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Robots and Pirates in the News (Ninja absent…but they’re Ninjas…so…)

There have been major news stories in the last couple of weeks involving robots and pirates making war.  The ninjas are staying out of the spotlight, but as that is their nature, this shouldn’t be noted as evidence that they aren’t very busy.

First up, the pirates…

NAIROBI, Kenya (CNN) — Pirates who hijacked a crude oil tanker off the coast of Kenya are approaching a Somali port, the U.S. Navy says.

The Sirius Star — a crude “super tanker” flagged in Liberia and owned by the Saudi Arabian-based Saudi Aramco company — was attacked on Saturday more than 450 nautical miles southeast of Mombasa, Kenya.

The crew of 25, including British, Croatian, Polish, Filipino and Saudi nationals, are reported to be safe.

U.S. Navy Fifth Fleet Cmdr. Jane Campbell said the super tanker weighs more than 300,000 metric tons and “is more than three times the size of a U.S. Navy aircraft carrier.”

Oil industry insiders say a tanker of this size can carry up to 2 million barrels of oil, and the ship’s operator, Dubai-based Vela International Marine Ltd, says it is fully laden.

[full story]

That piracy has been on the rise off Africa’s east coast is nothing new.  The general lawlessness of the area contributes to, well, lawlessness, which is an environment in which the pirate thrives.

One of the problems with this piracy issues is that people (governments and private companies) have been giving into pirate ransom demands to release ships and crew.  This then funds the pirates to attack more and bigger ships.  That super tanker mentioned above has over $100,000,000 worth of oil on it, and enough to cause a major environmental problem  (the Exxon Valdex spilled about 10 million barrels, this tanker has about 2 million…but cleanup would be severely problematic, see: pirates).

Not to be outdone, the Robots have also been making news around the world…

Pakistan has summoned the US ambassador in Islamabad to protest at a US missile attack deep inside Pakistani territory on Wednesday that killed five people.

The attack, in Bannu district, killed five local militants, officials say.

Previous drone attacks have been in the strip of territory along the Afghan border known as the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (Fata), a region where huge areas are under the control of militants rather than the central government.

But Bannu is in the North West Frontier Province where the government claims far more control.

“The American ambassador has been called to the Foreign Office to lodge a protest over the missile attack in Bannu,” a foreign ministry official told Reuters news agency.

The US embassy said that ambassador Anne Patterson would relay Pakistan’s concerns to Washington.

[full article]

Some intersting stuff there with the robots.  The U.S. has been using these unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV’s) or “flying robots” to take the fight to the enemy in places where it is quite difficult for leg-bearing humans to wander.

The question of using robots to fights one’s battles (which goes against something of the “warrior spirit”) is going to be an exercise left to the reader, but I can’t help but look at the news stories of the week and have the immediate reaction of…

…aim the robots at the pirates. 

Trust me, you want to get this whole thing resolved before the ninja make an appearance…which they won’t…poeple will just start dying.

With that truth in mind, you can see how the ninjas actually are in effect.  They’ve been a big part of the “Surge” in Iraq.  You don’t hear about exactly what they’ve done, and you won’t for years and years, but they’ve been very, very busy. 

WASHINGTON (CNN) — The dramatic drop in violence in Iraq is due in large part to a secret program the U.S. military has used to kill terrorists, according to a new book by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Bob Woodward.

The program — which Woodward compares to the World War II era Manhattan Project that developed the atomic bomb — must remain secret for now or it would “get people killed,” Woodward said Monday on CNN’s Larry King Live.

“It is a wonderful example of American ingenuity solving a problem in war, as we often have,” Woodward said.

In “The War Within: Secret White House History 2006-2008,” Woodward disclosed the existence of secret operational capabilities developed by the military to locate, target and kill leaders of al Qaeda in Iraq and other insurgent leaders.

National security adviser Stephen Hadley, in a written statement reacting to Woodward’s book, acknowledged the new strategy.

[full story]

And there you have it.

The absolute latest in robot, pirate, and ninja news.

The World This Week by Wah : September 14, 2008

Here is part 1 (and 1.1)  and 2 of last weeks roundup. Below you will find the links for each story mentioned.

Part 1.1

Part 1.2

Part 2

Read more for story links and details…

Part 1:

Executive Experience in Alaska

Info-Graphic Convention Coverage

Military Industrial Complex Shuts Down Olbermann and Matthews on MSNBC (owned by GE)

Bloons Tower Defense 3

Pot Kills Staph

A bit more on Pakistan

Another Upside of Global Warming

Russia, Georgia, Southpark

Tigh Visits Walter Reed

Game Review : PC : Spore 

Part 1.1:

Water Bears May Be Fruit of All Life

Has the Large Hadron Collider destroyed the world yet?

Part 2:

A Southpark Metaphor For McCain’s Speech

Palin to Right of Republicans on Climate Change

Sarah Palin is to Harriet Miers…

John McCain’s Funny Joke

A Second Theory as to Why John McCain Tapped Sarah Palin

Oh Yeah, and Obama Gave Some Speech

The John McCain “I’m a Victim” Express

A Simple Guide to Biased Reporting (re: Lipstick bullshit and Bonney Kapp)

On Joe Biden : 20 Years Ago

Anderson Cooper : 360 Degrees Of Suck

Lipstick on an Economy

McCain Makes New Pledge to American People

Wall Street Journal Joins News Censorship Game

What Talking About Issue Looks Like (Joe Biden)

“You can actually see Russia from Alaska” – Sarah Palin on her “international experience”

NOTES: A couple quick notes…I have another 20 minute or so of suff. Because of the time limits on YouTube (and Google doesn’t seem to be liking me) I think I’m going to shoot for a 20 minute limit next week. This was more of a proof-of-concept. Let me know what you think. If you absolutely have to see the rest, let me know and I’ll throw it up.   I should also have a much quicker turnaround next week, as my editing skillz just about doubled this last week.

One of My Latest Steam Splurges

Everyday Shooter by Jonathan Mak


Everyday Shooter is an album of games exploring the expressive power of abstract shooters. Dissolute sounds of destruction are replaced with guitar riffs harmonizing over an all-guitar soundtrack, while modulating shapes celebrate the flowing beauty of geometry.

Nice little indie game.

I like the noises it makes.

I’m also turning into a bigger fan of the Steam™ platform for game delivery. It’s essentially a secure game download tool pushed by the guys at Octane selling Half-Life 2. They’ve been able to horseshoe into the game download territory and have now pulled upwards of $100 or so out of my pockets for game splurges like this at that ninja one.

Me Getting My Blackbelt

Clooney Would Make a Good Ninja

He looks great for a 70-year-old. | MetaFilter

And here, for everyone’s pleasure is “THE GREATEST GEORGE CLOONEY STORY EVER”:
He may be pulling in $12 million a picture and deified by women worldwide, but George Clooney is apparently not above digging around in cat shit for the sake of a good joke.Actor Richard Kind (who plays Paul on “Spin City” and is a member of Clooney’s inner circle) and his pet feline learned that lesson the hard way.

“Richard had this cat that he loved and adored,” Ben Weiss, a “Friends” assistant director and another Clooney crony, recalls in the upcoming issue of Men’s Journal. “So George would go in the bathroom, and that’s where the litter box was. And there would be cat shit in there, so George would clean it up and flush it down the toilet. Then Richard would go in there and say, ‘God, it’s so weird. My cat hasn’t taken a shit in forever.'”

This went on for days: the cat crapping, Clooney merrily scooping and flushing. And eventually, Kind grew understandably concerned.

“Richard went to the vet to get some kind of thing to make the cat go to the bathroom,” says Weiss. “The poor cat. The cat’s shitting, and George is still cleaning it up.”

Clearly, the madness had to end. So the erstwhile “ER” star capped it off with a bang (or, more accurately, a thud).

“Finally, George stood over the cat box and took a giant shit,” Weiss tells the magazine. “And finally Richard goes in there and says, ‘Oh, my God! Kitty!'”
posted by ColdChef at 6:37 PM on March 17 [181 favorites ] [!]

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