- The Washington Times - Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Britney Spears is being used by British security companies off the horn of Africa as a secret weapon against Western-hating Somali pirates.

The singer’s top hits, like “Oops! I Did It Again” and “Baby One More Time,” when blasted at approaching Somali raiders, have proved to be the most effective at deterring kidnap attacks, merchant navy officer Rachel Owens revealed, according to the U.K.’s Metro.

“Her songs were chosen by the security team because they thought the pirates would hate them most,” said Second Officer Owens. “These guys can’t stand Western culture or music, making Britney’s hits perfect … It’s so effective the ship’s security rarely needs to resort to firing guns.”

“As soon as the pirates get a blast of Britney, they move on as quickly as they can,” she added, the U.K.’s Mirror reported.

Steven Jones, of the Security Association for the Maritime Industry, said that the pirates will go to any lengths to avoid the music.

“I’d imagine using Justin Bieber would be against the Geneva Convention,” he said, Metro reported.

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Ships in the area are in constant danger of Somali pirates raiding their ships and holding crews hostage for hefty ransoms. In 2011, there were 176 attacks on ships by pirates off the Horn of Africa, Metro reported.

According to Mirror, a spokesman for the British Association of Private Security Companies said that playing pop music “has been proven as one of the most effective ways of fending off attackers.”

• Jessica Chasmar can be reached at jchasmar@washingtontimes.com.

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