|Too expensive to use for the designed purpose|
The European Union(EU)’s anti-piracy mission off the coast of Somalia is plagued by a shortage of warships due to budget cuts, the bloc’s top military officer said on Tuesday.Given all the stirring resolutions about fighting the pirate menace, I guess it just a matter of priorities and "All hat, no cattle," as the Texas saying goes.
"I can imagine that there are many different reasons for this, but one is of course economy and also the budget cuts," said General Hakan Syren, chairman of the EU Military Committee.
EU’s Atalanta operation requires a minimum of four to six ships, but the number would fall "below the red line" in December, the general said after a meeting of military chiefs from the bloc’s 27 member countries.
"When it comes to this kind of assets, I can imagine that member states have felt a bit insecure about the situation in the Mediterranean Sea connected to the Arab Spring and the Libyan crisis, but primarily it is a question of resources," he said.
EU nations contributed about 10 warships to the Atalanta operation when it was launched in 2008 to fight against pirates off the coast of Somalia.
However, there are only six or seven EU warships that are taking part in the operation, which has been extended until the end of next year.
I suspect private security companies will fill in part of the security gaps caused by this issue.
Photo of the ship? Old U.S. Navy battleship.