Contemporary Maritime Piracy
International Law, Strategy, and Diplomacy at Sea
In the waters off the Horn of Africa, Somali pirates endanger critical oil shipping. The area is so vast that international naval patrols have proved relatively futile. In Asia, pirates not only hijack vessels but often murder the entire crew, steal ships' cargoes, and re-register captured vessels under new names as "ghost ships" without a legitimate past record.
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This volume provides a concise introduction to the issues and debates regarding modern piracy, including naval operations, law, and diplomacy, and focuses on the recent surge of attacks off the coasts of Africa and Asia.
In the past decade, the incidence of maritime piracy has exploded. The first three months of 2011 were the worst ever, with 18 ships hijacked, 344 crew taken hostage, and 7 crew members murdered. The four Americans on board the sailing vessel Quest were shot at point-blank range. The economic costs are also staggering, reaching $7 to $12 billion per year, as insurance costs skyrocket, ransoms double and then quadruple, and ships are forced to hire armed security for protection. Pirates operating off the Horn of Africa disrupt shipping traffic through the strategic Suez Canal, siphoning transit fees from an unstable Egypt, while the seizure of supertankers in the Indian Ocean underscores the vulnerability of the world's oil supply.
Governments, private industry, and international organizations have mobilized to address the threat. This is the first volume to examine their work in developing naval strategy, international law and diplomacy, and industry guidelines to suppress contemporary maritime piracy.
Contemporary Maritime Piracy: International Law, Strategy, and Diplomacy at Sea comprises three sections, the first of which contains chapters on historical and contemporary piracy, international law and diplomacy, and coalition strategies for combating future piracy. The second and third parts provide collections of historic profiles and relevant documents.
- Includes maps and relevant key documents
- Provides a bibliography of sources of additional information regarding international piracy
- Provides insightful coverage of a major topic in today's media
Authored by an expert in field of international law dealing with piracy
- Series Description
Praeger Security International
As the world gets "smaller" through technology and globalization, the security risks we face grow and multiply.
International security in the 21st century is not a topic that can be adequately addressed in nightly news soundbites or online articles intended to be relevant for 24 hours or less. Comprehending these complex issues requires insight from foreign policy specialists, diplomats, military officials, peace scholars, historians, and security experts—participants and observers on all sides of each conflict. This series provides the tools for understanding security issues in our uncertain, unstable world.
Covering global hot spots from Iran to Venezuela and subjects ranging from terrorism and cyber warfare to food security, books in the Praeger Security International series give readers access to carefully considered and highly informed viewpoints on the critical security issues that threaten to destabilize our world. With titles authored by diplomats, academic researchers, journalists, military leaders and combatants, legal experts, psychologists, and other knowledgeable specialists, these books offer in-depth analysis and international perspectives that are unavailable in the mass media. These titles represent an invaluable resource for students, researchers, and policymakers as well as for anyone who seeks a deeper understanding of the complex issues that affect our lives and future.
- Provides reliable, comprehensive information on all matters relating to security that is ideal for students, teachers, researchers, and professionals
- Offers insightful commentaries written by a diverse group of scholars and experts who provide interdisciplinary treatments of newsworthy events and important historical occurrences
- Author Info
"Commander James Kraska . . . provides an important addition to the navalist's bookshelf with Contemporary Maritime Piracy."
"James Kraska is a brilliant and forthright commentator on maritime security and legal issues relating to oceans governance. He brings to the subject an acute legal brain and clarity of exposition rare in both fields. These qualities are exemplified in this fine book in which he elucidates the detail surrounding emerging counter-piracy practices. It is a model exposition which will benefit anyone from the interested amateur to the pressured professional. It is a book that will never be far from my desk."
"This volume provides an authoritative, but very accessible, overview of the subject that provides not only the historical and legal context for understanding the pirates in the headlines, but also, perhaps even more importantly, insight into the operational environment of and constraints affecting the merchant mariners, naval personnel, and diplomats who must confront them. Moreover, the extensive appendices render the book an extraordinarily convenient reference. . . .Highly recommended for policymakers and other practitioners, as well as scholars and analysts."
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