April 14th, 2009
09:06 PM ET

Evening Buzz: Pirates Target Another U.S. Ship

Maureen Miller
AC360° Writer

We've just gotten word of another pirate attack against a U.S. ship off the coast of Somalia. This time the pirates weren't successful. The details are just coming in. We're gathering all the information and we'll bring you the latest tonight on AC360°.

The Somali pirates have been on a hijack spree since U.S. Navy Seals rescued American Capt. Richard Phillips on Sunday. They've seized at least four new ships in the past 48 hours.

Also tonight, President Obama's new message on the economy. He spoke at Georgetown University today. A lot of you have been sounding off on the 360° asking why the president doesn't just give each American a cash bailout. He addressed that today:

"There are a lot of Americans who understandably think that government money would be better spent going directly to families and businesses instead of to banks – one of my most frequent questions in the letters I get from constituents is "where's my bailout?", and I understand the sentiment, it makes sense intuitively and morally it makes sense, but the truth is that a dollar of capital in a bank can actually result in eight or ten dollars of loans to families and businesses. So that's a multiplier effect that can ultimately lead to a faster pace of economic growth. That's why we have to fix the banks."

Do you agree with President Obama?
Share your thoughts below.

Join us for these stories and more starting at 10pm ET.
See you then!

Filed under: Maureen Miller • The Buzz
soundoff (20 Responses)
  1. stephanie

    I believe that the money would be better spent going directly to the consumers who would spend it by paying off those bad assets instead of shifting them to someone else and if they are not wise enough to get themselves back on stable grouds then they deserve to lose it all. People don't have the trust or financial security to take on more debt when most of them can nolonger afford the debt they already have. Fixing the top is only going to be a temperary solution if the supports continue to weaken. It's the consumers who keep the economy working, we take out loans, pay the bills, buy the goods, that pay the banks paychecks.

    April 15, 2009 at 2:24 pm |
  2. Ashley

    I say all ships should carry weaponry (cargo ships, cruise liners, ect). That way, if some pirates fire weapons at them/ try to come aboard, the ships can have spealized crew members that know how to use the weapons, and they can blow them out of the water. Literally.

    April 15, 2009 at 12:23 pm |
  3. John Thomas

    Get 20 warships (from 10 different countries) and spread them 100Miles apart. That covers 2000miles of shipping lane and a warship is never more than 50 miles away from anyone under attack.
    Thats about 2 hours of response time, less if its a frigate with choppers.

    April 15, 2009 at 9:38 am |
  4. Michael "C" Lorton, Virginia

    We have to end this---armed the ships--then we will see how brave the pirates are--you are going to have to fight fire with fire--and not words.

    April 15, 2009 at 8:59 am |
  5. Art

    I have read many times that the "consumer" is 50 to 70 percent of "the" economy. With that said, I believe we should get some of the stimulas money. Not everyone would spend it wisely, but, I think most would, ie loans, credit cards, taxes, bills, etc, get caught up. Maybe some would buy a new car. Thats alot of money going back to the banks. As for the pirates, if they attack an american ship I think they should bear the full weight of the navy, no questions asked.

    April 15, 2009 at 8:16 am |
  6. CareFree

    I may be wrong, but wasn't the sailor who was e-mailing his family about the ship's activities/whereabouts violating any rules? I realize he isn't in the military, but couldn't this activity help even pirates locate a target? Other than that, I think we should provide shoulder-fired missiles or have a sub patrol the water with torpedoes, and blow these small pirate boats out of the water before they get too close. Also, let's bomb their "mother ships" with planes. This has gotten riduculous, and although I see why someone would want their employees back, paying ransoms is what escalated this particular activity of "highjacking."

    April 15, 2009 at 8:15 am |
  7. Felipe

    don't forget the majority elected this man, lets let him do the job we the people elected him to do. To the G-no-p stop cryin cuz you lost this election, really If you had a better Idea on how to get us out of this mess more of you should have run for President Our ears were open! We have spoken.

    April 15, 2009 at 8:00 am |
  8. LeRoy Cashe

    President Obama is genuinely working at solving the economic malaise that he inherited when he became president. I have heard the constant criticism from many about the huge expenditures that the Obama Administration has undertaken to begin stimulating efforts in the economy. I will like to know how else can the economy get moving if some spending isn't undertaken?

    I work for a major Fortune 50 company that has had to shut down several major manufacturing units as a result of diminished sales at the consumer level. I'm not talking about the auto industry. They have had to furlough employees for 3 to 6 months with the probability of lay-offs if things do not turn around. All 150,000 plus employees know that their jobs are directly linked to people going out and purchasing needed items. We do not manufacture any consumer product, but we do manufacture many catalyst products that go into the manufacture of hundreds of finished consumer products. If those products are not being sold, then store inventories are cut; manufacturers reduce their inventories; and we therefore have to cut back on our manufacturing. And it does not stop there. Shipping via trains and trucks are reduced; less warehousing leased spaces are needed; purchase of raw products from various sources worldwide are reduced; and on an on.

    So, for those of you who are critical of the President's spending plan as to large or unnecessary, my question to you is this: Without any spending occurring at the consumer and manufacturing levels, how do you propose to get this economy going again?

    April 15, 2009 at 6:04 am |
  9. db

    I disagree with Obama, If he would send me just a $100,000.00 bailout I guarrantee the economy around me would benefit. I could pay off all the Credit cards and the mortgage. I'm the only adult male in a house full of women, (wife ,3 daughters ,2 grand daughters and 1 grandson) I know they'd find plenty of ways to spend almost everything my wife and I make..instead of paying off loans and ccs they would be going to movies and shopping etc.. with cash. If everyone else did the same there wouldn't be a recession in the U.S. If you're waiting on me to take out more loans, Mr. President you're wasting your time.... no way!

    April 15, 2009 at 5:04 am |
  10. Kathy

    Pirates in the Gulf of Aden and on Wall Street. Extortion of ransom and plundering the U.S. treasury have been successful business models.

    I have no reason to believe Wall Street bankers are working to ensure the prosperity of families and businesses. It sounds a little too much like "trickle down economics" for my taste. Why should we borrow so bankers can get richer? Have you noticed your credit card interest statement lately? My credit card issuer (big bank that got lots of public money) said they were raising my interest rate 5% "in response to market conditions and to maintain profitability on my account" I helped them by paying off the balance immediately. I agree with the President that intuitive common sense and what is morally correct should be guiding our public policy. Teenagers with guns shouldn't be able to disrupt world shipping and bankers should not be able to use extortion to plunder the public treasury for private gain.

    April 15, 2009 at 2:53 am |
  11. andrea

    i so agree i think obama is doing a great job ! i love the fact he always hits the point ! i had to come to turms with the fact i was to responable for not doing the right thing with my money ! i got in way over my head ! and now im fixing my money its hard but it well get done ! i think we all just lost our way the banks me and other people ! so when it fineally hites you you blame everyone eles ! no one likes to be told they where taken for a ride by the banks or bad scams ! every likes to think they were doing the right thing ! we all just have to pray for what we have to thankful for how much stronger we now ! and continue help and love one another ! im so happy now that my life is going in right direaction ! thank you obama for the inspiration ! to be a better person

    April 15, 2009 at 1:55 am |
  12. Gary

    Just tell all the countrys that have bans on weapons, we are moubting 50 caliber guns four and aft, with 2 midship, 1 each side, and they well stay there untill the pirates are taken of, If you still want us to deliver goods to your country, change your policy, and we well , If you dont change your policy we well not deliver anything.

    April 15, 2009 at 1:10 am |
  13. Mary Jane

    Why not use a convoy system with military vessels escorting as was done during World War II. The various countries could share in supplying military vessels for the escort duty.

    April 15, 2009 at 12:36 am |
  14. k. lindsay

    In regards to the Somalian Pirate situation, We need to set up an escort service to escort ships safely. Any and/or all ships needing an escort to enable them to reach their destination safely can do so by pulling together (all countries combining resources with the us navy).
    The entire world is hurting economically and if we continue to let these "modern day thugs" continue to overcome these free trade ships, the world economy will be paying the price!
    In the 1980s' we were escorting tankers. Why can't we escort all these ships now? All pirates who mess with the US Navy escort service will be dealt with accordingly!
    If we rid the world of pirates then where will they go? Hopefully take-over their own country and compete with the rest of the world in the "Free enterprise system!".
    Keith L.


    April 15, 2009 at 12:01 am |
  15. stuart davis

    Stop giving pirates money for ransom and instead give them the opportunity to create a new industry in africa which ensures safe passage for all vessels in the region. Don't leave it to their corrupt governments to handle.

    April 14, 2009 at 11:15 pm |
  16. Barbara

    I am ,absolutely, in favor of enabling the Merchant Marines to Arm themselves , because of the escalating actions of the Pirate terrorists. All the Nations that need to travel in that region should collectively support this change, as well, as supporting each other w/ security of all Freighters. 🙂

    April 14, 2009 at 11:11 pm |
  17. RENE


    Maybe the US Gov., can't do anything to prevent piracy, but they can do a lot to protect people's lives, they have just to use the convoy tactic as used during WWII; it's a lot easier today, just use one frigate to escort 8 ot 10 ships, and this way along with all the technology they have they can prevent ships' hijacking.


    April 14, 2009 at 10:57 pm |
  18. Hiru B.Naik

    This is about Barack Obama and his policies.He is really doing a wonderful job.Do not expect him to do miracles overnight.Whatever bad things,damages,etc.previous Government did,is not easy to cure just in 100 days or 1 yr.or 2 yrs.and so on.Please give the President at least 2 full terms.He will cure all the present ills not only in America but in many other parts of the World.Just support him-Encourage him-Cheer him.Just do not critisize him and his policies.What Obama needs at this hour is our/your/everyone's support,encouragement,co-operation,good wishes,etc.etc.
    Please see if these comments reach most of your viewers.I am from Goa,India and I was in California June 10 to Sept.27,2007 and again in Apr.10 to Oct.9 2008 as a visitor.
    Wish President Barack Obama and his energetic team all the best and Success.

    April 14, 2009 at 10:34 pm |
  19. Su from Fort Lee,NJ

    Response to Professor Obama's speech at Georgetown:

    OMG – Obama finally verbalized it – he'll mortgage my nephew & niece's social security & medicare to help build his ambitious agenda of nationalized healthcare and other "pillars" to build his "Bedrock" foundation...

    April 14, 2009 at 10:09 pm |
  20. Isabel Siaba

    Good evening, Maureen Miller!

    Ànother ship! At dawn was a Greek ship with 22 Hostage, right? That horrible situation!
    That uncertainty!
    In a world in crisis, be pirated in Somalia is a profitable business, the only one work who in a country destroyed by war. What nations are doing? There is already a contingency plan?

    President Obama is right. The government needs to restore the purchasing power of people, thereby increasing sales, the companies produce more, unemployment has declined.

    See you later!

    Thank you!

    April 14, 2009 at 9:31 pm |