Thesis Title

Enemies of Mankind: the Developing Threat of Modern Maritime Piracy and Terrorism


Scott Banker

Date of Graduation

Summer 2003


Master of Science in Defense and Strategic Studies


Defense and Strategic Studies

Committee Chair

Ulrike Schumacher


As the twentieth century came to a close, the number of maritime pirate attacks began to increase worldwide. These attacks ranged from simple thefts to the wholesale hijackings of large ocean-going vessels and the murder of their crews. While pirates have roamed the seven seas for countless centuries, modern pirates present a unique threat to the contemporary world. This thesis will examine the threat of modern piracy. Piracy as a threat and a concept has evolved throughout history, from the empires of the ancient world to the highly interconnected nation-states of the twenty-first century. Pirates, today, present a threat to international commerce, regional security, and even the environment. While statistics show that piracy is on the increase, there has been little effort among the world's leading powers to attack and eliminate this problem. The establishment of multiple layers of international law within the Twentieth Century has, instead of decreasing piracy, actually contributed to the inability of regional powers to confront this problem. This thesis will conclude with a study of the various campaigns underway to reduce this menace.

Subject Categories

Defense and Security Studies


© Scott Banker