October 26, 2010
Report from Taiji: October 26 (new video)
This morning the dolphin hunters captured two different pods of dolphins. One pod of at least 52 bottlenose dolphins and a pod of approximately 7 Risso dolphins were “pushed” into the cove and sealed behind nets. The pod of bottlenose dolphins appears to be predominantly juveniles and infants. We wonder if these are part of a larger pod and were separated from the rest. All during the day the Cove Guardians stood vigil. We will be there before first light tomorrow morning to document their fate.
There were at least four policemen, two Coast Guard Officers, and two firemen at all times watching us at the cove. Their numbers swelled from time to time. We are told that they are there to ensure that neither we nor the “fishermen” cause trouble. I wonder how many Japanese tax Yen have been wasted by the government’s inane support of this dying industry. The harassment, capture, or slaughter of whales and dolphins has no place among honorable people in the 21st century.
You would think that just a week before the meeting the Mayor of Taiji has arranged that these dolphin hunters/slayers would refrain from offending the world. But their greed and arrogance shines through. These men continue to inflict shame on all the Japanese people by their acts.
Elora and I will attend the Mayor’s meeting representing the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society. Our message is a simple one. Taiji (and all of Japan) must stop harassing, capturing, and slaughtering dolphins and whales. We are not interested in “debating” or negotiating with the Mayor. There is no legitimate argument for continuing the harassment, capture, or slaughter and no legitimate argument for allowing a handful of greedy and ignorant men in Taiji to stain the reputation of the entire population of Japan. We will ask the Mayor some questions and stand ready to answer any he might have of us. Sea Shepherd is committed to seeing the end of this insanity and will remain in Taiji until it ends.
Elora and I will be staying in Taiji until December 9. Our visas expire on December 10. A Sea Shepherd representative will replace me and so we will have a continued presence through the end of the season. Donations are still needed to fund this campaign. We already have commitments from volunteer Cove Guardians to keep coverage well into February and are counting on Cove Guardians to stand with Sea Shepherd here through the end of March 2011.
The dolphin hunting and slaughter season in Taiji runs until March 31, 2011. It picks up again on September 1, 2011. We are confident that Cove Guardians will answer the call and come join us here this year, but for those who cannot come this year; start making your plans for next year. This is working and if we continue our presence long enough, the laws will be changed. When that happens, Japan can take a respectful place among the nations of the world.
You can help. Spread the word, send donations to the Sea Shepherd Cove Guardian campaign, join in the Worldwide Anti-Whaling Day on November 5, avoid all travel to Japan except to become a Cove Guardian with us here in Taiji, make good consumer choices regarding whether or not to purchase Japanese products, and ensure that you do everything you can to keep the pressure on the Japanese authorities. It is unfortunate that the reputation of an entire nation is being tarnished by the evil and shameful deeds of a handful of men in Taiji. To join us (voluntarily, and completely at your own cost and risk) in Taiji, write to me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I will get back to you, but please be patient. I cannot keep an eye on the Cove and answer email at the same time.
For the Oceans,
Click here to learn more about the 5 November 2010 Worldwide Anti-Whaling Day.
video: Elora West
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