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Broken Promise to send Customs Vessel to monitor Japan's illegal whale killings

Environment Minister Greg Hunt justified the downgrade of a customs vessel to a plane to monitor Japan's illegal whaling, saying that "we want them to be aware that there will be monitoring – independent monitoring which from an aerial position can take independent vision of what occurs.''

There's no scientific or economic justification for Japan's whale slaughter in the Southern Ocean, where they are internationally protected. We already know what Japan plans to do in the Antarctic.

Sea Shepherd has shut down illegal Japanese whaling

When whalers aboard the Nisshin Maru trained their water cannon on the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society's Steve Irwin, they were shocked to find themselves on the receiving end of an even more powerful blast of frigid Southern Ocean water from a water cannon on the Steve Irwin. As a result, the Nisshin Maru and the rest of the Japanese whaling fleet are fleeing Northwest pursued by the Bob Barker and the Steve Irwin without having killed a single whale in the three days since they were intercepted.

Originally published on on 8 Feb 10. See also: "Bob Barker Rammed by Illegal Whaler" of 6 Feb 10, "Ban whaling vessels from using our ports" of 16 Jan 10, "Twilight Samurai pride clinging to a right to pillage distant whales in foreign oceans" of 7 Jan 10, "Japanese whaler rams and sinks anti-whaling vessel in Antartic" of 7 Jan 10.


Ban whaling vessels from using our ports

One would assume that an organisation entitled the 'Australia Strategic Policy Institute' would be a government body or a body at least having Australia's strategic interests at heart.

But its director, Dr Anthony Bergin, with a title one would assume would be capable of research, has written an article for Fairfax media supporting Japan's strategic interests.

If our doctor were respectful of the democratic rights to protest we have in Australia and recognised the Japanese incursion in Australia's whale sanctuary in the Southern Ocean, and respected the existence rights of whales, then perhaps his article for Fairfax would have instead read like this...

Twilight Samurai pride clinging to a right to pillage distant whales in foreign oceans

Japan's dogged pursuit of whales well beyond its shores in our Southern Ocean is more about preserving endangered cultural pride than science.

Japan's justifications for whaling are not commercial nor scientific, despite the official rhetoric. They are culturally deep and desperately self-preserving, despite being wrong, wasteful and backward.

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