As you probably noticed, I’ve been polite in reacting to the administration’s handling of the first wave of Somali piracy. This has been mostly out of pragmatism: like Jonah Goldberg and Ed Morrissey, my interest is in seeing dead or stopped pirates, and my generally low opinion of Democratic Presidents aside when it comes to setting foreign policy, this is actually one time when Obama’s natural instinct for detachment would be fine. The military knows how to handle piracy, particularly when they’re not required to worry about nation building whatever euphemism the administration eventually comes up with to replace ‘nation-building.’ Which they wouldn’t have to. I’m even pleased to see the chest-beating bravado from the Online Left: it’s, well, cute – and God knows that their ideology gives so few opportunities to act anything like the ‘primitive’ men that they publicly deride and privately envy.
Besides, I also knew that this was going to happen (via Jammie Wearing Fool):
Somali pirates have brazenly hijacked four more ships in the Gulf of Aden over the last 24 hours and opened fire on a fifth.
The pirates captured two trawlers yesterday, a cargo ship named the M.V. Irene overnight, and a second cargo ship named the M.V. Seahorse today.
This afternoon a Nato official said a band of pirates had opened fire on a fifth cargo ship – but it managed to escape.
…at least in the sense that this particular confrontation was inevitable. These guys are, after all, pirates – and they’re quite keen to find out just how far they can push things. As Ed noted here, they’ve worked out that we’re ready to shoot them if they grab Americans… but how will we react to Filipino, or Egyptian hostages? For that matter, how will we react to our Congressmen being shot at? And how will we react when we see the consequences of a soft response – or a hard one – plastered all over our television screens and monitors? Because innocent people are going to die either way. That happens, in the real world. Fortunately – and thanks partially to the currently strutting Online Left – it’s going to be fairly hard for the President to go passive on this. And I of course expect them to fully support Obama when he gives the order to shell or bomb notable pirate havens. Even when it looks bad on the evening news.
That’s part of “I got this,” you see.
Crossposted to Moe Lane.