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Thursday, February 17, 2011

Japanese wailing again...


Banzai, Nippon!


Agent Triple P was glad to see a Japanese Antarctic whaling fleet seen off by the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society this week.  Needless to say a Japanese fisheries official, one Tatsuya Nakaoku, was quoted as saying: "It's extremely regrettable our research activity has been obstructed by the acts of sabotage..."

How do the Japanese (and the Nowegians) keep arguing that whaling is being undertaken for "scientific research".  No it isn't, you do it because you like eating whale meat.  Don't argue that it is "culturally significant" either. We used to eat songbirds in Britain but we stopped.  We used to have slaves but we stopped.  We used to send children down mines but we stopped. We used to burn enormous amounts of coal in our cities but we stopped. This is because we are a mature and civilised country that realises that just because we have traditionally always done something doesn't mean that, in a changing and ecologically fragile world, we can still justify it.  Unfortunately, the people of Norway and Japan are so arrogant that they feel that they can pursue their outdated and barbaric slaughter of whales on these sort of cultural, disguised as "scientific", grounds.

What research, actually, has all this "scientific" research yielded?  How many samples do you need of a creature to conduct "research".  The answer in the case of this fleet was a planned catch of 945.  945?  That isn't a catch, that is a harvest.  What we should be saying to these two countries is; alright, if you are killing whales for research you have to destroy the carcasses afterwards; you're not alowwed to sell them for food.  Not that anyone seems able to enforce this.  The Norwegians just up and left the International Whaling Commission.  Unless someone imposes sanctions on these ghastly countries nothing will happen.  They argue that there are enough Minke whales to allow a certain number a year to be taken.   Even if, as the Japanese maintain, Minke whales are the "cockroaches of the sea" and need to be culled to protect fishing stocks (after all the Antarctic is right next to Japan) then the whales should still be destroyed not eaten if you want to convince people that you're not just thinking about your next dinner out.  We won't even go into the fact that smaller countries who don't support Japan in the IWC have been threatened with losing their Japanese aid.

Anyway arguements about population levels are not the point. The point is that these are very intelligent creatures, possibly very intelligent indeed (although we bet Japanese "research" doesn't support this), and you just shouldn't kill them, full stop. 

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