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27 responses to “Sea Shepherd Returns From the Whale Wars”

    • Sam

      admirable.
      makes you think, if we all started acting on our words what we could achieve…what we could save

    • Jeffrey Lam

      I’m glad that Captain Paul Watson and the others respect the sanctity of life. I almost feel guilty now for being concerned that Sea Shepherd don’t hurt the whalers when the whalers have inflicted injury on the Sea Shepherd crew, without any whalers being injured themselves. Of course, no-one would be injured, whales, whalers or Sea Shepherd, if the whalers just packed up and went home.
      Keep doing what you do Sea Shepherd.

    • drivin98

      While the goal of stopping whaling may be admirable, I think the way these guys go about it is dangerous and self-serving. Personally, I think the Japanese should send a Navy cruiser with the fleet next time and apprehend and try Watson and crew in Japan for reckless endangerment.

      A year or so ago the BBC had an excellent series on whaling to took into account the Japanese perspective. It revealed that positive progress could have been made if we had approached them respectfully instead of keeping a confrontational attitude. The only thing Watson’s antics will do is ensure the Japanese continue whaling and resist any rapprochement by the non-whaling international community. Of course, it will also keep the coins pouring into the Sea Shepard coffers which is what I cynically suspect is the reason these actions continue to be taken.

    • Adrian Ezard

      Dear drivin98,
      …and in the meantime, taking your ‘ideal’ political path as a scenario and the way forward, more whales will die – nice. The wheels of bureaucracy would again grind away to no avail and more whales will die.

      The Japanese would continue ‘scientific’ sampling no matter what and more whales would die. I guess if the whale population were wiped out then they’d stop – now there’s a solution that may appeal to you ?

      The Southern Ocean is one of the most hostile places on Earth and you believe these guys are down there for the fun of it ?

      It does unfortunately take the actions of people who care to act and raise worldwide awareness to make a difference. The higher the profile, the greater the political leverage that is exerted.

      The issue is a cultural conflict that needs to be handled with delicacy by politicians in their own time with the weight of international public support behind them – but not if the time it takes is at the expense of the lives of the largest and most magnificent creatures on the planet.

      The human race is very slowly crawling out of the dark ages in relation to how we treat our planet and the creatures on it (including ourselves).

      We live in a world of misinformed anonymous armchair critics – please don’t remain one of them.

      Adrian Ezard

    • drivin98

      This “armchair critic” is quite familiar with what it feels like to be at the mercy of the sea which is one reason I disagree with this type of action. The other reason, as previously intimated, is that it is ineffectual. Instead of saving whales, Watson and crew, have not only contributed to the hardening of the position of the Japanese, but also put peoples lives at risk. No whales have been saved and no constructive dialogue can take place with the atmosphere being poisoned by Watson and his well-meaning supporters. It is, in a word, counter-productive.

    • Matt

      @ drivin98

      Why do you think no whales have been saved? What are the Japanese doing when they are busy fleeing from Sea Shepherd I wonder, not whaling perhaps? Sea Shepherd has ended the careers of 9 illegal whaling vessels and cost the Japanese many millions in lost revenue. You can’t say thats not an impact. Last time out, (Operation Migaloo I believe) Sea Sheperd prevented the whalers from slaughering over half their quota. Sea Shepherd police the antartic, enforcing international law because the Australians are too reluctant to (no pun intended) rock the boat.

    • Sam

      @drivin98

      it is clear from the original post that it is the whalers who are ‘wreckless’ in fact they go one step further by being aggressive.

      to emphasize what Matt has just written above, it’s not just the Australians its the whole world. And sea shepherd are the only ones with balls enough to stand up to these pirates dressed as scientists.
      it’s not as if sea shepherd look for violence, they deter they harass and it is the irate whalers that almost always lash out first, forcing sea shepherds hand.

      your cynicism regarding sea shepherd’s so called ‘coffers’ is completely unfounded and perhaps/hopefully a good read of their website will convince you otherwise.

    • James

      Wow – Video Evidence, i hope we can find some more!

      Thanks Paul

    • Matt

      @ James

      Just go on the Sea Shepherd website or do a quick search on youtube, whould come back with quite a few results.

      Im wearing my sea shepherd t-shirt now! yaaay!

    • Simon Hacker

      I think any question of coffers being filled on the back of anti-whaling sentiment is one best answered by the marketing department of Greenpeace. Sea Shepherd is no charity bureaucracy with shiny high-rise offices and legions of salaried staff. I’d seriously question, too, the motivation of drivin98 in criticising Op Musashi. It doesn’t quite square with the Dalai Lama’s endorsement of Sea Shepherd’s strategy and ethics. If we’re going to stop whaling it’ll be through direct action, not fannying about with, as history has shown, the endless deferment of politics.

    • Matt

      @ Simon Hacker

      Agreed. If you call the Steve Irwin, you speak to Captain Watson, there are no paid lackies or Personal Assistants in SSCS.

      The bottom line is Sea Shepherd are actually doing something, directly intervening with Whaling activities. Greenpeace say they “bare witness” Great so watch whales being killed and take some photos…Well done lads! All that method achieves is having someone back home looking at the odd picture of a whale being slaughtered and thinking “ooh thats a bit bad, someone should really do something about it.”

      Unfortunately Sea Shepherd are the only organisation willing to do something about it.

    • drivin98

      @Simon
      Feel free to question my motivation to be critical of confrontational means to achieve an objective. I just feel there are more productive ways of achieving the same objective. Perhaps instead of pissing off a whole country and making the Greenpeace name synonymous with terrorist (to be slightly hyperbolic about it), resources could be spent developing an anti-whaling pressure group in Japan comprised of Japanese citizens.

    • Matt

      Sorry on an all together different species but no less important Russia has just banned the hunting of baby harp seals! Yaaay! Only Canada and Norway still take part in this pointless and brutal slaughter

    • Jeffrey Lam

      @drivin98
      have we mixed up Greenpeace and Sea Shepherd, or are you saying that Sea Shepherd’s actions will affect Greenpeace’s reputation? (e.g. Japanese citizens see Sea Shepherd and Greenpeace as one and the same)

    • Matt

      I heard about this a while ago.

      Great work Greenpeace. Getting arrested to show that a couple of low level grunts have kept a little meat for themselves. What has this achieved? Nothing, but it has provided an excuse for Greenpeace not to send a boat to the Ross Sea this year (which they have said they aren’t going to bother with btw). They say they are going to focus on this case instead, Save a ton of their millions they make every year.

      Greenpeace are a money making joke.

    • Nicholas Poveromo Jr.

      All I can say to this is that if the Japanese thought it was legal to hunt and kill whales in the Southern Ocean, they wouldn’t hide behind the “Scientific Research” BS. In this day and age, you would think that such a technologically advanced country as Japan would know everything there is to about different whale species. Harpooning these magnificent creatures under the guise of research is a terrible crime. If Sea Shepherd does nothing, no one will. Do any of you think that the Japanese would have listened to reason even before Captain Watson took his crew down there to fight the whalers.? I think not! The Japanese are not going to let anyone talk them out of something that they believe to be their right and a long tradition. I can see taking a couple of whales in the name of tradition like the Inuit do with a few seals. This, however, is just plain industrial whaling.

      I am more than willing to give my money to an organization that doesn’t just sit on their worthless butts, like Greenpeace. Remember, Sea Shepherd does a lot more than whaling campaigns. They also help dolphins and seals. How in the world can so many people just push these issues aside? When the last seal, whale or dolphin is killed, then will it end? People around the globe better wake up and really consider what the consequences of our actions are. Why the hell are we trying to make a home for ourselves on the moon and Mars. Why don’t we fight for this planet!

        • Xena

          Does anyone remember that Star Trek movie The Voyage Home? Where the extinction of whales nearly tore apart the whole planet?
          Granted, the storyline in that movie was just the tiniest bit far fetched (;)) but it does show that the destruction of a single species could be catastrophic for our planet in the future…
          So many people just assume that whatever we do to fight for our earth is going to be too late but it’s not the right attitude… the damage that we’ve caused can’t be reversed, but we can stop it progressing any further… more people need to take action!

            • MechaZilla

              If we accept Star Trek: The Voyage Home as an example of eco-system imbalance then surely it’s never too late. What with the ability to sling shot round the sun and fix our past errors and all.

                • Xena

                  Haha! Like I said, clearly it’s a tad far fetched… but you get my point?
                  Anyway, those star ships would emit an awful lot of carbon I’m sure…

    • Matt

      @ Nicholas

      Can’t agree more, we are on the brink of the a major eco-system collapse, the 6th major mass extinction in the planet’s history. Scientists say that between 2000 and 2065 more plants and animals will become extinct than we have lost in the last 65 million years of our planet.

      Human beings are the ones responsible for this catasrophic mass ecological genocide. 90% of global fisheries have already been wiped out which is part of the reason why countries like Japan try to force whale meat down the throats of their children. Whale meat which contains dangerously high levels of mercury (thousands of times the recommended amount) which is a cause of serious nervous system damage, coma, and death.

      Once we finally plunder our oceans of the last morsel of food for our arrogant gluttony perhaps then we will realise that we’ve signed our own fate.

        • James

          …by which time it will be too late.

    • Jonny Holt

      Hello everyone,

      Once again the Japanese Whalers resort to extreme tactics to prevent Sea Shepherd from disrupting their disreputable business. Have a read of this:

      http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/asia-pacific/8442808.stm?ls

      Best regards,

      Jonny.

        • TR

          I doubt it was “unprovoked” …in fact I’d be slightly disappointed with Sea Shepherd if it was. Annoying the whalers is what Sea Shepherd is there for 🙂

          Still, ramming a boat (and one a fraction of the size and strength) of yours is disgraceful. I think it shows that not only have these cowardly whalers have become desensitised to violence against animals, they’re also completely apathetic towards humans too.
          I hope that everyone from Sea Shepherd is okay and that they’re able to continue their great work.

    • drivin98

      I read it. Not surprisingly there are differing opinions about what happened with both sides claiming the other is at fault. Personally, I think it was the skipper of the Ady Gil’s fault. If you watch the video from just before the incident (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BMmpGm5Z1ik&feature=player_embedded), they come up alongside the whalers, ignoring alarms and warnings, then cut across the bow of the bigger boat and then turn back as if they are going to do it again. As can be seen in the next video (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z_KnBKriGog&feature=player_embedded) the Shonan Maru veers towards them to get close and prevent them from doing it again and the Ady Gill accelerates forward and gets its bow sliced off.

      So has the cause of stopping whaling been advanced? I think not. As far as I can see, the Japanese are more deeply resolved to continue than ever and the anti-whalers are expressing and provoking more anti-Japanese sentiment. Meanwhile, any legitimate efforts to end the practice by Greenpeace have been effectively sabotaged. Congrats.

    • Nicholas Poveromo

      For years now, Greenpeace has tried to use talking points, political views, and empty words to influence the International Whaling Commission. All this effort has done little to change the hunting of whales in the Antarctic Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary. The Japanese will stop at nothing to catch their quota, completely in the open and illegally, all in the name of so-called “scientific research.” It’s a crime against one of the greatest marine animals to ever live. I applaud any effort by the Sea Shepherds to prevent the Japanese from hunting whales. Why should they wait around for Greenpeace to use “legititmate” means to stop this when the Japanese are already breaking the law by conducting the hunt in the first place? It’s been proven several times over, year after year, that the only way to enforce the law down in the Southern Ocean is to take control with force, not words. If it wasn’t for Sea Shepherd, think how many more whales would have been illegally butchered. If you are waiting for legitimate efforts to resolve this, it’s never going to happen between the IWC and the Japanese. So yes, congrats… to the Sea Shepherds for putting conservation into action!