Australia slams Japan over whale hunt

Although the Australian government will not be officially monitoring the annual whale hunt, they have made it clear to Japan that they believe the “scientific study” is nonsense and that it needs to end.

Australia has criticized the whale hunt for years but this may be the beginning of an increasingly hostile relationship on this issue.

Al Jazeera has more from Tony Burke, Australia’s environment minister on the whale hunt:

“In the interim it is open to Japan any day of the year to take the same action that the rest of world has taken and that is to observe a moratorium in the Southern Ocean. That is to accept that commercial whaling is wrong and scientific whaling is a joke,” he said.

“We cannot continue to have a situation where everybody knows it’s nothing to do with science and yet, with a nod and a wink, Japanese fleets travel from one side of the globe to the other to engage in this, and to break the moratorium year after year,” Burke added.

More from Paul Watson, the founder of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society:

“There is no difference between what the Japanese are doing in the Southern Ocean whale sanctuary and what elephant poachers are doing in the eastern Kenya. Except that in Kenya poachers are black, they are poor and they get shot for what they are doing.”


An American in Paris, France. BA in History & Political Science from Ohio State. Provided consulting services to US software startups, launching new business overseas that have both IPO’d and sold to well-known global software companies. Currently launching a new cloud-based startup. Full bio here.

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  • toshio yashiro

    ” I don’t understand why the Japanese government is now feeding whale meat to school children as part of school lunches.”

    it is a reason of only own pocket of “whaling industry “.

    *Rather than the national life, they worried previously that a nuclear power plant might be made
    into decommissioning, and did accident processing.
    They did not have hesitation, either and drained radioactive contamination water to the Pacific
    Ocean. Respect should be shown more in the sea.

  • toshio yashiro

    [“Greenpeace highlights woes of Japanese whale meat industry “
    And with the return to power of the Liberal Democratic Party leader, Shinzo Abe, as next prime minister, observers see a strengthened pro-whaling lobby in Tokyo.]
    Is it a very big turning point for a whale? A situation gets increasingly bad for them? Possibly it becomes good?

    “Japanese whalers under US justice protection” This was reported with surprise.
    The overwhelming victory of the Liberal Democratic Party was imagined.
    [An International Fund for Animal Welfare global whales campaigner, Patrick Ramage, said after a recent visit to Tokyo that Mr Abe's own electoral base was the whalers' port of Shimonoseki ]
    *”Shinzo Abe ”comes from Yamaguchi- prefecture and Yamaguchi-prefecture is a huge whaling promotion prefecture.( Shimonoseki is a city of the Yamaguchi prefecture. )
    However, the greatest enemy of anti -whaling was in fog until now.
    [Shinzo Abe, as next prime minister, observers see a strengthened pro-whaling lobby in Tokyo.]

    It is becoming famous that Shinzo Abe is the greatest whaling promoter.
    ["Japan's Fisheries Agency" and the government accepted research whaling as commercial whaling themselves from financial difficulties. "In 2009, it increased from 3,096 tonnes to 4,246 tonnes. In 2010, it exceeded 5,000 tonnes, before falling slightly to 4,284 tonnes in 2011" by Sir Ronald Sanders.
    A huge stockpile is a big proof which shows the non-necessity for whaling more to the world. A huge stockpile = "preparation of the third World War" ?
    Why nobody suspects? I do.
    "Although Japan has a 4000-ts stockpile, it continues whaling. " " why ?" "For what ? "
    “Infanticide of a whale” is for protecting the fish which man consumes. They tell a lie to the world. Suppose temporarily that their opinion is right. However, the world has not entrusted the request of the serious missions to Japan. Everyone in the world has not made such a request Japan. They have continued "commercial whaling "for " research whaling" by the way of excuse for a long time. Their theory has whaling first. The reasons for affirming all the whaling are attached later.
    The world knows that it is a reason of only own pocket of “whaling industry “. ] from my comment.
    I am sending “attention” and “cautions” to the world .
    I conclude that the reason for firm whaling industrial protection of Japan is “a stockpile for war.”
    This firm protection is unusual.
    The world should look out to this stockpile.! ” why ?” “For what ? ”
    Why nobody suspects? I do.
    While, This doubt from the world will dull the speed of slaughter.
    This is hope.
    This slaughter is unnecessary.
    from tokyo

  • http://adgitadiaries.com/ karmanot

    Well done. There is always the weapon of shame, which will bring the Japanese government to great loss of face if the public outcry is very vocal and unrelenting.

  • http://www.rebeccamorn.com/mind BeccaM

    Excellent points, all.

  • Ninong

    This article is about Australia’s objection to Japan’s whaling in the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary, which was established by the IWC in 1994. Commercial whaling is prohibited within its boundaries. Japan was the only country that voted in opposition. Japan has continuously violated that ban by calling their commercial whaling operation “scientific research.” That’s a complete fabrication and everyone knows it.
    What is new this year is that the Australian government is finally taking a stronger position on Japan’s violation of the whaling ban in the Southern Ocean. I don’t believe there was any whaling in the Southern Ocean last year because the Japanese government called it off due to clashes with Paul Watson’s Sea Shepherd ships. In the year before last the Japanese whale haul from the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary was cut in half due to disruption by the Sea Shepherd ships.
    The point I’m trying to make is that this article has absolutely nothing to due with the very limited whaling that is allowed by the IWC to indigenous peoples, like those in Alaska and Canada. And it has nothing to do with the whaling operations conducted in other parts of the world by Norway or Iceland. If one is opposed to whaling in principle, as I am, then it’s a valid point to bring up that whaling is tolerated by countries other than Japan but it’s not the topic of this article.
    The Aussies are pissed that the Japanese government continues to violate the ban on whaling in the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary. That’s a start. We can’t solve all of these issues at once but at least the Australian government is making more noise this year than they usually do. Paul Watson’s Sea Shepherd ships are headed for the Southern Ocean right now to attempt to disrupt the Japanese whaling fleet’s operations.
    I don’t understand why the Japanese government is now feeding whale meat to school children as part of school lunches. Okay, I know why they’re doing it — to get rid of all the frozen whale meat they have in storage. But whale meat is very high in mercury and other toxic metals and it should not be consumed by children and pregnant women. It’s even worse than tuna.
    If we’re going to talk about all of these issues, then maybe we should bring up the annual slaughter of hundreds of dolphins conducted by the Japanese every year… or the annual slaughter of pilot whales conducted by the Faroe Islands. Or maybe we should bring up something I’m really, really against and that’s the annual slaughter of baby seals conducted by Canadians in spite of the fact that most Canadians are against it.
    Another thing that really pisses me off is the annual slaughter of millions of whale simply for their fins! China is mostly to blame for that ridiculous practice. And we can blame Japan for the fact that the world’s population of blue-fin tuna is being decimated.
    Oh, well…

  • http://twitter.com/JafafaHots Jafafa Hots

    Sea Shepherd is.

  • http://www.rebeccamorn.com/mind BeccaM

    Those aren’t the only two nations (besides Japan) which engage in whaling.

    There’s also the U.S., Canada, Russia, Indonesia, and other nations.

    Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Whaling#Modern_whaling

  • http://40yrs.blogspot.com Matthew Saroff

    We could shut down the Icelanders, and their vote on the IWC tomorrow, and probably do the same with the Norwegians in 2-5 years.

    Once Japan stands alone, it becomes a lot harder for them to get support.

  • hoplite_i

    Good question. Scale perhaps? WW2?

  • http://40yrs.blogspot.com Matthew Saroff

    Why aren’t we going after the Icelanders and Norwegians as well?

    Particularly in the case of Iceland, there is still a shit load of leverage to get them to stop hunting whales.

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