The Mystery of Cocos Island
By Captain Paul Watson
There is an agenda here that remains a mystery,
A decade ago we saved hundreds of sharks.
Of this event we have a documented history,
In our efforts to defend Costa Rican marine parks.
With permission of Guatemala we ended the slaughter,
Without causing injury, death or destruction,
We made a powerful film entitled Sharkwater,
To shark finning we became a major obstruction.
For twelve years the Galapagos we have protected,
Seizing hundreds of thousands of shark fins,
Our responsibilities we have not neglected,
Seizing sea cucumbers, lobsters and seal skins.
We gave supplies, equipment and support,
To the park rangers of Cocos Isle.
Never dreaming this would bring us to a Costa Rican court,
It is a mystery why the politicians are now so hostile.
The Varedero was a convicted shark finning outlaw,
We filmed their crew's illegal actions,
This incident forced us from Cocos Isle to withdraw,
As Taiwan continued their illegal transactions.
A decade later at Frankfurt airport I landed,
Surprised to find myself detained,
My extradition Costa Rica demanded,
Why Germany detained me remains unexplained.
Interpol had dismissed the warrant,
Politically motivated was the reason given,
The maritime crimes we had stopped were abhorrent,
Yet the poacher's crimes are by Costa Rica forgiven.
Charged on the basis of the fishermen's claim,
Their word alone against our documentation.
No matter the evidence, they claim I am to blame,
Money buys influence in this corrupt nation.
We acted in Guatemalan waters,
With permission of Guatemalan authorities,
Permission granted to stop the shark slaughters,
Just what are Costa Rica's priorities?
More than thirty 30 tons a year of shark fins exported,
Millions of fins drying under the Costa Rican sun.
These crimes have been thoroughly reported,
Investigations stifled by threats and the gun.
At stake is this fair treasured Island so green,
The island that inspired Robert Louis Stevenson's book,
Sharks massacred to feed the Asian lucrative food culture machine,
So many millions slaughtered by net and hook.
Politics driven by the economics of extinction,
In defiance of the ecological law of finite resources.
Greed is incapable of distinction,
China demands fins without concern for sources.
And as the oceans are pillaged and raped,
Governments turn a blind eye to our earnest pleas,
Ignoring evidence we have videotaped,
Corruption is a global disease.
Champions of the land and sea are targets now,
We stand in the way of the great addiction.
Profit, be it legal or not is now a sacred cow,
And demands my severest conviction.
I shall step into this cesspool of hypocrisy,
And face these inquisitors eye to eye,
Judgment by their heartless bureaucracy,
Countered with justice as my battle cry.
For no matter what the verdict may be,
I know in my heart that defending the sharks is right,
In that respect my conscience will be forever free,
And I shall never retreat from this noble fight.