Monday, April 13, 2009
Pirates -3, U.S. Captain 1 -- thank you SEALS!
Navy Seals Kill Pirates, Rescue American Hostage
By Justin Fishel
Sunday, April 12, 2009
Arlington, Va. -- Captain Richard Phillips is now safe and healthy aboard the USS Boxer after Navy Seals launched a rescue attempt that ended when snipers killed three pirates in three shots, all direct hits to the head.
Vice Admiral William Gortney, Commander of Navy's 5th Fleet, told journalists at the Pentagon Sunday evening a decision was made to take the shots after the pirates were spotted pointing an AK-47 into the back of Captain Phillips.
As soon as the shots were fired, Navy Seals "scurried down" a tow line attached to the lifeboat, and were the first to get to Phillips. They surveyed the scene and found three dead pirates. Phillips was alive, although tied up.
The fourth pirate, who is now in U.S. custody, left the lifeboat hours earlier with the understanding he would negotiate from on board the USS Bainbridge, the massive Navy destroyer that shadowed the lifeboat for several days.
It soon became clear the younger pirate was simply turning himself in and had no intention of going back to lifeboat, according to defense officials.
Shortly after the Seals reached Captain Phillips, a Navy RIB (Rigid Hull Inflatable Boat) approached the life boat and safely escorted Phillips back to the Bainbridge. He has since undergone a medical exam and had the chance to take a shower.
According to Admiral Gortney he's healthy and unharmed.
Somali Pirate video while aboard the Yasa Neslihan, a vessel manned by a crew of 20 Turks captured by Somali pirates on October 29, 2008. The vessel and crew were released unharmed on Jan. 6, 2009, after a ransom was paid.