Talk about poor judgement

U.S. Navy Ships Return Fire on Suspected Pirates

American Forces Press Service:

USS Cape St. George and USS Gonzalez returned fire early today on a group of suspected pirates in the Indian Ocean, killing one and wounding five, U.S. Naval Forces Central Command officials reported today.
The incident occurred about 25 nautical miles off the central eastern coast of Somalia in international waters.

Cape St. George, a guided missile cruiser, and Gonzalez, a guided missile destroyer, were conducting maritime security operations in the area as part of Combined Task Force 150, officials said.

Here are before and after pics from JCCC:

The two Navy ships returned fire with small arms only. Obviously, if they had used anything bigger, there would have been no “after” photo to speak of.

As James (of Hell in a Handbasket fame) asked in an email, “What were these guys thinking?” Seriously. Were they drug runners who sampled the goods? It appears that they had an RPG launcher with a few rounds and a couple of AKs. What would make those guys do that?


This is what they were going to fight two Navy warships with. Sheesh.

James has a post with links to more info on the ships plus some stories from a visit to an Arleigh Burke destroyer a few years back.

UPDATE: EagleSpeak, who covers piracy stuff regularly, has more, including headline fun and a pic of the bullet hole in USS Gonzalez.

Incidentally, if you’re interested and/or concerned about the piracy issue (and you should be), bookmark EagleSpeak.


  1. Now if you were in say, a sailboat- maybe 40-50 feet max, and were transiting the area and these guys pulled up, what would you like to have on board to deal with them? That wouldnt get you in trouble when you got to port?

  2. Most places, you get in trouble for having any kind of weaponry on your boat, including rifles/handguns/shotguns. So if you’ve got them you have to hide them from the authorities, and if you use them you’d better not report it, even if it stops pirates from wiping out your crew and stealing your boat. And if you don’t have them…