This was significant because the pirates are venturing farther out to sea, beyond what the international community had considered safe. That line had been about 200 miles, but this attack was much beyond that. Hardly surprising. They are going hunting where the odds of finding prey are good. And they found some prey.
The U.S. Navy said pirates commandeered a Saudi-owned supertanker bearing more than $100 million worth of crude a few hundred miles off the Kenyan coastA 10 percent ransom would set these guys up for a long time, and give them the support they need to go even farther off shore. Better equipment. Better weapons. It is clear they are getting experience.
What surprises me is that no is suggesting convoys with armed escorts as a response. More will be done in December. How nice. (Help is just around the corner!)
The governments of the world, and most people in the west, don't want to believe any of this is true. Take a look back in time at my early posts on maritime piracy; the comments - the few there are - indicate people don't want to think about it. Pirates are something you hire Johnny Depp to portray for Disney, not something that costs lives and money. Pirates are a joke that involve ninjas or spaghetti monsters, but not real people committing real atrocities. I'm not sure why they think that. It shouldn't disturb them as they cower in their gated communities. (Aren't they in gated communities because they are afraid that the world is not safe?)
Maybe someday, someone will do something.