We are going out to Dubai and Fujairah (a huge port on the Middle East Gulf) tomorrow to work alongside some oil tankers. And it appears that might be A Very Bad Idea.
LONDON, Sept 10 (Reuters) - The United States Navy released on Tuesday a warning to shipping in the Middle East Gulf against possible planned attacks by Al Qaeda against oil tankers. The full text of the U.S. Navy advisory bulletin follows:
"According to unconfirmed reports circulating within the regional shipping community, the Al Qaeda terrorist group has planned attacks against oil tankers transiting the Arabian Gulf and Horn of Africa areas. While the U.S. Navy has no specific details on the timing or means of the planned attacks, and there are no indications that an attack is imminent, the threat should be regarded seriously. This reporting substantiates previous indications of Al Qaeda intent to attack commercial shipping as a means of creating economic instability. Shipmasters should exercise extreme caution when transiting strategic chokepoints such as the Strait of Hormuz or Bab-el-Mandeb, or sailing in traditional high-threat areas such as along the Horn of Africa and other confined waters. Coalition forces are alert to the potential threat and are currently on patrol in the Arabian Gulf, Red Sea, and Gulf of Oman. U.S. flagged merchant vessels and vessels effectively working under U.S. control are reminded to consult NIMA Publication 117, "Radio Navigation Aids," for emergency reporting procedures. Non-U.S. flagged merchant vessels are urged to review standing flag state and regional emergency notification procedures."
(Stefano Ambrogi, London newsroom, +44 20 7542 8167, fax +44 20 7542 4453, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org)