November 30, 2008
On November 1, 2008, an Indian naval ship, on station in the Gulf of Aden, hailed a suspect ship that strongly resembled a so-called ‘mother ship’ whose description had been widely circulated to various countries of interest. The Indian ship, the INS Tabar, clearly identified heavily armed Somali pirate types on the decks of the ship and these then opened fire on the Indian ship which immediately returned fire, which resulted in the other ship catching fire and blowing up. The Indian unit then chased two pirate motorboats initially seen by the sunken vessel, one of which was found empty and the other, obviously with men from the first boat, had vanished.
There seems to be no doubt that the Mumbai attackers were Pakistani terrorists but the signal intelligence Army people have been gathering information that would make a strong case that the destroyed ‘mother ship’ was owned by a Pakistani front company and that the attack on Mumbai, a major Indian seaport on the Arabian Sea, was partially in retaliation for the destruction of the pirate haven.
There is strong talk here that a ‘unified naval command’ should ruthlessly pursue and destroy the Somali ships whenever and wherever they might be found and, if the pirates use a Somali fishing port as a haven, to bombard the area and render it useless as a haven for hijacked ships. As many countries are suffering the attentions of the increasingly bold Somalis, such draconian actions would certainly meet with almost universal approval.”