The EU’s Misguided Move to Fight Pirates Onshore

When confronting the crisis of Somali piracy, the preferred strategy of the international community has been to deploy naval vessels to protect vulnerable ships and deter and disrupt pirate attacks. The refrain that ‘the solution to piracy lies onshore’ is oft-heard, but counter-piracy actors—including the US, the EU, and NATO—have been slow to deepen their […]

NATO, The African Union and the Fight Against Piracy

By: James Marcus Bridger One would be hard pressed to find an article analyzing Somali piracy—be it journalistic, academic, or militarily focused—that does not make the claim that this maritime problem can only be solved on land. In the four years that the international community has attempted to address this crisis, however, a coherent and […]

Storm Brewing over Mistral Sale to Russia

By: Simon Miles It has long been acknowledged that Russia possesses a powerful military; but equally broadly accepted that it is in dire need of modernization. Of late, the Russian government of Dmitri Medvedev and Vladimir Putin has been taking steps to rectify this defect and bring the Russian military in line with the standard […]

Canada’s Submarine Supposition

By: Ryerson Neal A seemingly innocuous off-the-cuff remark made last week by Defence Minister Peter McKay inspired a flurry of headlines suggesting that the federal government might be interested in acquiring nuclear-powered submarines for the Royal Canadian Navy. Minister McKay sparked the furor while speaking with reporters about the future of the Navy’s chronically dockyard-bound […]

Kenyan Troops Go Where Others Fear to Tread

By: James Bridger Despite attempts to brand itself as a luxury tour destination, Kenya has been unable to escape the harsh reality that it borders a failed state of Hobbesian proportions. Instability has spilled over in recent weeks, as Somali militants launched a series of daring raids into Kenyan territory: On 11 September Judith Tebbutt, […]

Piracy Watch: Preventing the “Somalization” of West Africa

By: James Marcus Bridger  An All Too Familiar Event On September 14, armed pirates commandeered an idling tanker, the Matteus I, making off with its cargo of crude oil and 23 hostages. While such events no longer make headlines when they occur off the coast of Somalia, this hijacking took place on the other side […]

Turkish-Israeli Relations Sinking Fast Over Flotilla Fallout

By: James Marcus Bridger Ever since Turkey became the first Muslim-majority country to recognize Israel in March 1949, relations between the two states have been marked by a high degree of economic, military, and humanitarian cooperation. What was once a seemingly natural alliance between two non-Arab “outsiders” in the Middle East has however recently devolved […]

Following the Somali Pirates’ Money Trail

By: James Bridger. Somali pirates took in approximately $240 million in ransom payments last year, an enormous sum, particularly for a country where the average yearly income is roughly $600. While the NATO Council’s previous article addressed the myriad risks posed by the expansion of Somali piracy, the question of how this money is spent […]

Canada’s Maritime Security: A Guide to the Issues

By James M. Bridger.   As a nation surrounded by three great oceans, Canada’s maritime security has been of preeminent importance throughout the country’s history. Once boasting the world’s third largest navy, Canadian forces were instrumental in the Allied victory during the Battle of the Atlantic and have since played a significant global role in […]

Somali Piracy and the World’s Response

A Failed State, Small Boats and Big Money: The Expansion of Somali Piracy and the World’s Response. By James Bridger. More Attacks, Higher Costs Over the course of the past decade, Somali piracy has transformed from a localized nuisance into an international crisis. In 2004, the first response to the growing threat posed by piracy […]