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MQ-9 Reaper  (Source: U.S. military)
The U.S. military is using its UAVs to help try and reduce the number of pirate attacks

United States military unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) drones normally used for missile attacks or reconnaissance are now protecting the Somali coast from a recent increase of piracy.

The military now has its MQ-9 Reaper UAV patrolling in the Indian Ocean, marking the first time UAVs have been used for safety patrols.

Specifically, the MQ-9 Reaper, a 36-foot long craft that can fly up to 16 hours, has been used for coordinated strikes in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan.  The UAVs utilize laser, radar and infrared, and have the ability to carry up to 12 guided missiles and munitions.

The drones patrolling Somalia aren't equipped with weaponry as of yet, but depending on the number of hijackings, it's a future possibility, military officials told the Associated Press.

“What we hope will happen is that they will get much earlier warning of suspicious vessels or suspected [pirate] mother ships that can then be targeted by the naval vessels. Or alerts and broadcasts can be sent out indicating the positions of these ships [and] indicating they should keep as clear a distance as possible," said London International Maritime Bureau, Cyrus Mody.

The U.S. military has used 3-foot-long drones in Somalia before, but this is a significant step forward to try and stifle dangerous pirate attacks.  An international group of warships from the United States, Japan, China, South Korea and other nations are patrolling near Somalia, but the pirate attacks are still occur.

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RE: Hmm...
By DEVGRU on 10/26/2009 10:41:43 AM , Rating: 1
The only thing Somalia is worth is a bright flash and a few grams of tritium-enriched plutonium.

RE: Hmm...
By Moohbear on 10/26/2009 1:25:56 PM , Rating: 2
Always rushing to the extremes...

I mean, do you have any idea of how much a nuclear missile costs? I don't think there's enough money in Somalia to cover for it /jk

RE: Hmm...
By Amiga500 on 10/26/2009 6:21:25 PM , Rating: 2
This post having a postive rating is a sad reflection of (at least some of) the readers of this site...

If you seriously think nuking an entire country is the solution to the actions of a mere handful (relatively), then I think the human race would be better off without you.


RE: Hmm...
By Pryde on 10/26/2009 11:53:15 PM , Rating: 2
Maybe its because not everyone is as serious as you. I read it and while I disagreed with the statement that little bit of creative writing is what makes this a great site to read.

RE: Hmm...
By mmcdonalataocdotgov on 10/27/2009 7:21:10 AM , Rating: 2
No, he/she qualified the statement.
If you seriously think...
No need to read further.

RE: Hmm...
By deltadeltadelta on 10/27/2009 11:44:08 AM , Rating: 2
I believe that was meant as satirical writing. Easy does it...

RE: Hmm...
By mindless1 on 10/27/2009 10:54:38 PM , Rating: 2
I do not directly blame the whole country for the actions of the few, but tell us this:

Does the country not know it is happening? Do they do anything to try to stop it? Do not claim they are poor, they could seize pirate boats and guns, they have idle manpower.

It would cost us all less to buy them a few boats and guns than to continue babysitting their citizens but they choose not only not to be a friendly neighbor, but do so because they feel it is an advantage to them for the rest to suffer loss.

Nuke them? No. Totally shut them off from all outside resources. Let them have the lives of primitive people if that's the kind of conduct they tolerate. Their boats, their fuel won't last forever, if no new boats are built all we have to do is blow the ones they have out of the water... nukes not required.

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