Thursday, November 27, 2008

Sobering news - and what does it portend?

Terrorists in Mumbai attack arrive by boat

By IBI Magazine

Terrorists who attacked the financial district, railway station and two upscale hotels yesterday in Mumbai arrived by small high-speed boats, according to local press reports. The terrorists, whose boats may be registered in Pakistan, are responsible for the killing of at least 100 people and wounding of 200 more.

According to, the terrorists arrived by boat at the Gateway of India jetty, which is Mumbai's most identifiable landmark, and then crossed the street to the Taj Mahal palace. They also commandeered vehicles to attack the Chhatrapati Shivaji railway station, the Leopold café while entering the Taj and the Oberoi Trident hotels. They are still holding tourists as hostages in the hotels. Reports say the terrorists singled out US and UK citizens.

The Gateway of India jetty is a popular tourist destination and typically has 200 boats moored there. "We know they arrived at the jetty and then began targeting popular sites in south Mumbai. We have yet to establish if they came in from sea routes from Karachi," a top intelligence told the website.

"Unlike previous terror attacks in cities across India this year that involved planting bombs, this time around gunmen have been at the forefront lobbing grenades and firing from their AK-47 assault weapons," the official said. "The attackers call themselves the Deccan Mujahideen but we have not heard of such a group and we don't know if it is genuine. But we understand that some of the terrorists spoke Hindi from eyewitnesses."

Other news sources speculate that the attackers are Pakistani nationals and that their boats are registered in Pakistan. The Times of India reported that Colaba police have impounded four boats used by the terrorists to reach the Mumbai coast. Indian warships and surveillance aircraft are searching around Mumbai to look for a 'Mother Ship' which could have ferried the terrorists and their boats.

Terrorist attacks by small boats are not unprecedented. Al Qaeda used a small boat in 2000 to attack the USS Cole in Yemen. The Tamil Tigers in Sri Lanka have also used small boats to attack that country's navy, including "stealth suicide craft." US officials have speculated that small boats could be used to attack major urban centers in US ports or other strategic targets like liquid propane gas terminals.

(27 November 2008)

As awful as the actual events are, what knee jerk reactions from the various governments around the world going to do to civilian yachtsmen/cruisers/boaters? Keep an eye out for excessive regulation coming down the pike, for "our own safety" of course.

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