Why Fighting Pirates Is Both Good and Bad for PSC.
If you have been paying any attention at all this year to the piracy situation off Somalia you may remember that the number of pirate attacks against commercial shipping is down. And while the exact causes have yet to be established with certainty, just about everyone who follows this believes, without question, that the presence of private maritime security teams is certainly a contributing factor.
So this is unquestionably a good thing for the private security industry — indisputable proof of their contribution to maritime security, in a manner similar to when Blackwater protected State Department personnel in Iraq, i.e., never having lost a client to an attack.
So people should have less qualms about the use of PSC at sea, correct? Well, not quite, according to the article “Private Security and Armed Military Guards: Minimising State Liability in the Fight Against Maritime Piracy” by R Graham Caldwell published this month in the RUSI Journal. RUSI is the Royal United Services Institute in the United Kingdom.