President and Founder of Sea Shepherd Conservation Society Captain Paul Watson sent this letter to Senator Ian Campbell by fax today:

Dear Senator Campbell,

I see from the news today that you are condemning us once again for our "foolhardy" tactics.

I have given you my assurances that we will not injure anyone and our record over the last 30 years is unblemished in this regard. You should have no reason to doubt me.

As for putting the cause of whale conservation backwards: I have spent forty years protecting whales and I see no evidence that our activities will cause any more damage than that of governmental inaction.

Australia speaks up for the whales, and I really do appreciate this, but words will not stop illegal Japanese whaling activities.

As for being non-violent, there is a difference between violence and aggressive tactics.

We have a gift from the Dalai Lama on our bridge. It is an icon named "Hayagriva" and it stands for the compassionate aspect of Buddha's wrath. The Dalai Lama explained the meaning to me himself when he said, "You never want to hurt anyone, but sometimes when they cannot see enlightenment, you scare the hell out of them until they do."

Senator Campbell, I do appreciate your concern for human life. I share your concern. The risk down here is not against the lives of the whalers but our lives. The Japanese have threatened us.

All of the violence down here in these waters is instigated by the Japanese whalers. Thousands of gallons of blood are being spilled into the waters off the coast of Antarctica. Great whales are dying in abject agony from the merciless harpoons of the Japanese whalers. The cold air of the Ross Sea echoes with the screams of the whales. The cruelty is unimaginable and the slaughter is remorseless.

Yes, there is plenty of violence down here but it does not originate with us.

Senator Campbell, please answer this question for me: How do you justify Australia's heavy-handed interception of Indonesian poachers, and especially Uruguayan toothfish poachers, in the Australia Economic Exclusion Zones (EEZ) yet you turn a blind eye to the equally illegal activities of the Japanese whalers in the Australian EEZ? Why is there one law for poor countries and another for wealthy nations? Why is Australian government violence okay when practiced against Indonesians, but intervention against Japanese poachers is not even considered? In other words, why does the Australian government have a policy on whaling that is hypocritical and effectively impotent?

Your blessing of Greenpeace activities is interesting. So, Greenpeace is now officially government approved. I'm not surprised - governmental approval is not hard to come by if one does little but posture and talk. While we are down here in Antarctic waters looking for whaling ships, the Greenpeace ship is at berth in New Zealand looking for memberships.

How many more snuff films do we need, Senator Campbell? The Greenpeace internet campaign to win the hearts and minds of the Japanese is ridiculous and will not bear fruit. They have the ability to catch and obstruct the whalers, but they choose not to do so. Ending whaling could be bad for their business.

You say that our tactics will bring the whale conservation movement into disrepute? With all due respect, Senator, it cannot be in more disrepute than it is now.

What we have are large so-called conservation organizations raising vast sums of money to protect whales although they are doing very little to actually protect them except to ask for more money. In total, these groups raise more money from "saving" whales than the Japanese make from killing them. All they have to show for it is images of whales dying and protesters hanging banners and posing heroically for the cameras.

What we have are governments like yours saying that the whales must be protected but very little is being done to actually protect them.

Nothing brings disrepute to a cause more than financial exploitation and non-action.

Sea Shepherd Conservation Society may be radical in your eyes and pirates in the eyes of the whalers, but I can assure you, Sir, that there is no group of people on this planet more dedicated to the defense of the whales than we are. Unlike the Greenpeace crews, we are not paid to be down here. Unlike the Greenpeace crews, we are actually down here now. Unlike the Greenpeace organization, we are not spending millions on advertisements and direct mail and door-to-door solicitations to fill the corporate coffers. We had to borrow money to get our second ship.

Every Sea Shepherd volunteer is asked if they are willing to risk their lives for the whales and only those who answer in the affirmative may join the crew.

The only thing these whale killing thugs understand is enforcement.

We are not acting rashly. We are down here in these waters acting in accordance with the principles established by the United Nations World Charter for Nature.

Your government should be down here with us, or better yet, your government should be down here instead of us. These whales are not the property of Japan to slaughter at will.

I have assured you that Japanese lives are safe from us. We are not killers, Senator Campbell. Our mission, for three decades, has been the saving of lives. In fact, we are all vegetarians on this ship, Sir.

But, because of inaction on the part of your government, lives other than whale lives may indeed be lost because you have given moral encouragement to the Japanese to be as aggressive as they so desire with us.

Must we die down here, Senator Campbell, in order for the world to take action against these criminals? Must I sacrifice my life, and if I do so, can I expect you to make the comment that I have hurt the cause of whale conservation? Will my death bring the cause of whale conservation into disrepute?

We are a pirate ship now, Senator Campbell. You could come down here and arrest us. But you won't, because if you did, you would be demonstrating that you do have the authority to intervene. We recognize your authority but the Japanese do not.

If you really are concerned about the protection of human life, Senator Campbell, then come down here with your navy and stop us, if you refuse to stop the Japanese.

Show the world what side you are really on. There are only two sides down here in these hostile waters. You either stand with the whales or you stand with their killers. And since the killers are your trading partners, there is no doubt where you actually stand.

Send your Navy down here and choose which side you are on, Senator Campbell. I will not resist you.

But nothing will stop us in our quest to end this bloody slaughter and if we must lose our ships, our freedom, or our lives, we will fight for the side we have chosen.

We fight for the whales, for the oceans, and for the future, Senator Campbell.

And if our passion and our compassion sets your "movement" backwards and into "disrepute," then I'm sure the whales won't care, Sir.

They will be dead.

Thank-you
Captain Paul Watson
Founder and President - Sea Shepherd Conservation Society
Co-Founder - The Greenpeace Foundation

Please visit our Operation Leviathan campaign pages for more information about our mission to save the whales of the Antarctic!


Sea Shepherd
Operation Milagro III Campaign Launch Video
Operation Milagro III Campaign Launch Video
Sea Shepherd Conservation Society is returning to Mexico’s Gulf of California for Operation Milagro III to save the near extinct vaquita marina porpoise and the endangered totoaba bass. The M/V Farley Mowat is back on active duty with the M/V Sam Simon joining the Milagro campaign for the first ti...
Sea Shepherd Investigates Whale Corpse in Sea of Cortez
Sea Shepherd Investigates Whale Corpse in Sea of Cortez
The Farley Mowat Sea Shepherd crew is called out to investigate a dead Brydes whale in the Gulf of California on November 5th, 2016 while patrolling the vaquita refuge. To help the Sea Shepherd crew to continue its work in the Sea of Cortez, including protecting the near-extinct vaquita marina porpo...
Entanglement in the South
Entanglement in the South
Operation Guardian Angel - In and around Bahia de Los Angeles, in the Gulf of California, countless marine species are entrapped in nets with little or no hope of rescue. Rosalia Tellez works for CONANP, a department of the Mexican government that acts as park rangers to enforce laws and assist in ...
Good and Bad Days
Good and Bad Days
This video follows Sea Shepherd volunteers over the course of two days. The first day Sea Shepherd locates and removes a long line from the sea; fortunately no animals were caught in the net. However, the next day volunteers find a sea lion that has been caught and died in a fisherman's net.
Operation Virus Hunter Campaign Summary
Operation Virus Hunter Campaign Summary
Sea Shepherd campaign Operation Virus Hunter saw the vessel RV Martin Sheen under the leadership of Alexandra Morton, head up the coast of British Columbia Canada to expose open pen Atlantic salmon farms and the impact they are having on wild Pacific salmon and the the surrounding eco-systems.
Illegal Totoaba Nets
Illegal Totoaba Nets
This video follows Sea Shepherd volunteers through the process of locating, retrieving and disposing of illegal nets in the Gulf of California.
Discovering Alleged Wild Salmon Dead in Fish Farms
Discovering Alleged Wild Salmon Dead in Fish Farms
August 12th 2016: Early Thursday morning the R/V Martin Sheen assisted Melissa Willie, a band councilor of the Musgamagw Dza’wada’enuxw nation, in hand delivering a letter to three farms expressing the nations disapproval of the industry. Sea Shepherd crew alongside independent biologist Alexand...
The Grind of the Faroe Islands
The Grind of the Faroe Islands
Ross McCall travels to the Faroe Islands to explore the truths behind the centuries old tradition of the brutal Pilot Whale drives.
Operation Virus Hunter: A Salmon PSA with Pamela Anderson
Operation Virus Hunter: A Salmon PSA with Pamela Anderson
Sea Shepherd Chairman of the Board, actor/activist Pamela Anderson, cautions viewers about the dangers of eating farmed salmon.
Why Just One?  Indiegogo Video
Why Just One? Indiegogo Video
Support Sea Shepherd's documentary by sharing and backing our Indiegogo campaign here: http://bit.ly/1OfvER6
Milagro Summary - English
Milagro Summary - English
Sea Shepherd Conservation Society's Operation Milagro II has come to an end. Milagro is its campaign to fight the looming extinction of the vaquita porpoise, the most endangered marine mammal in the world. With an estimate of less than 100 surviving vaquita, Sea Shepherd ships the R/V Martin Sheen...
Operation Milagro II: Vlog 15 - Good Bye
Operation Milagro II: Vlog 15 - Good Bye
Watch the crew of the Farley Mowat capture footage of illegal fishing activity with a night vision drone and pull up a totoaba net in the dead of night. This is the final vlog of Operation Milagro II!
Sea Shepherd's Ethical Research Whale Project
Sea Shepherd's Ethical Research Whale Project
Sea Shepherd's Ethical Research Whale Project is dedicated to collect samples from whales in the Gulf of California to measure levels of toxins in whales in order to determine the levels of toxins in the Gulf of California itself. Learn more at: www.seashepherd.org
Totoaba Poachers Caught on Camera
Totoaba Poachers Caught on Camera
Never before seen footage. Sea Shepherd catches critically endangered totoaba poacher in the act. The Sea Shepherd crew filmed these totoaba poachers as they were checking one of their illegal nets in the protected vaquita habitat. The vaquita porpoise is the most endangered marine mammal in the wor...
Operation Milagro II: Vlog 14 - Saving Lives
Operation Milagro II: Vlog 14 - Saving Lives
Watch‬ the routine of our crew doing valuable work in the ‪Sea of Cortez‬. We have been very effective at removing illegal fishing gear from the ‪‎vaquita‬ porpoise's habitat. So much so, that now, most of the time we remove nets and lines that are mostly empty, our favorite thing to do....
Sea Shepherd finds 3 dead vaquitas in 3 weeks
Sea Shepherd finds 3 dead vaquitas in 3 weeks
The Sea Shepherd crew has found 3 dead vaquitas in 3 weeks in the month of march of 2016. The vaquita porpoise is the most endangered marine mammal in the world. Learn more at: www.seashepherd.org/milagro2
Sea Shepherds finds a dead sample of the most endangered marine mammal in the world
Sea Shepherds finds a dead sample of the most endangered marine mammal in the world
While patrolling the waters of the upper Gulf of California the Sea Shepherd crew found a dead vaquita porpoise. The vaquita is the most endangered marine mammal in the whole world. The crew also found a Great White Shark caught in an illegal gillnet.
Operation Milagro II: Vlog 12 - This is Direct Action
Operation Milagro II: Vlog 12 - This is Direct Action
This week, the crew of ‪Sea Shepherd Conservation Society's ships The M/V Farley Mowat and The RV Martin Sheen find and retrieve an illegal totoaba bass long line from the critically endangered ‪vaquita porpoise habitat. The totoaba fish is also critically endangered. Watch all episodes at: http...
Sea Shepherd Crew Save Humpback Whale Entangled in Illegal Gillnet
Sea Shepherd Crew Save Humpback Whale Entangled in Illegal Gillnet
Sea Shepherd crew rescued a whale entangled in an illegal totoaba gillnet in the Gulf of California. Sea Shepherd currently has two vessels in Mexico's Gulf of California on OPERATION MILAGRO. Our goal is to save the vaquita porpoises, the most endangered marine mammal. The vaquita are caught as a r...
Gregg Lowe on Sea Shepherd's Operation Milagro
Gregg Lowe on Sea Shepherd's Operation Milagro
You might know Gregg Lowe from X-Men: Days of Future Past, but now watch him explain Sea Shepherd's Operation Milagro and understand why we must save the #VaquitaMarina - The most endangered cetacean in the world. Help us save the vaquita at: http://seashepherd.org/milagro2/donate-now/vaquita-appeal...
Operation Milagro II: Vlog 11 - Big Fish
Operation Milagro II: Vlog 11 - Big Fish
This week the crew of Sea Shepherd Conservation Society's ships The Farley Mowat and The Martin Sheen find and retrieve an illegal totoaba bass net from the critically endangered vaquita marina's habitat Watch all episodes at: http://www.seashepherd.org/milagro2/multimedia/videos.html ‪#‎OpMilag...
Operation Milagro II: Vlog 10 - Light up the Dark
Operation Milagro II: Vlog 10 - Light up the Dark
Actor Gregg Lowe crews with Sea Shepherd to help us protect the vaquita. The M/V Farley Mowat lights up the vaquita refuge and deters poacher from laying deadly nets in the vaquita marina's habitat. Watch all episodes at: http://seashepherd.org/milagro2/multimedia
Sea Shepherd Wildlife - False Killer Whales
Sea Shepherd Wildlife - False Killer Whales
The first video of our new series "Sea Shepherd Wildlife". This episode is about one of the lesser know large dolphins - The False Killer Whales. Learn more about these beautiful creatures with the Sea Shepherd crew. Share it with your friends. Video by Carolina A. Castro Narration by Nicole D'Entr...
Sea Shepherd Removes gillnet from Endangered Vaquita Habitat
Sea Shepherd Removes gillnet from Endangered Vaquita Habitat
Sea Shepherd Removes gillnet from Endangered Vaquita Habitat.
Operation Milagro II: Vlog 05 - Gillnet Damage
Operation Milagro II: Vlog 05 - Gillnet Damage
Join the crew of the R/V Martin Sheen as they witness the damage a gillnet can cause to marine wildlife while patrolling the endangered vaquita's refuge in Mexico.