We Get Mail – Sea Shepherd Shenanigans Edition

A few days ago DSN received a letter from one of our fans,

[sic]

To whom it may concern,
After reviewing your comments concerning the Sea Shepard, it is quite apparent that you do not appose the killing of whales by the Japanese!! It is also apparent that you support such actions by these savages!! The efforts that the crew of the Sea Shepard have put into such a mission, I’m sure is more then any of you have accomplished in a lifetime. It’s to bad there are poeple like you who only bring negativity through the media. Their couragous fight will continue!!!!

With Much regret,
D.L. [full name removed]
[location removed]
Animal and Marine Advocate

We always appreciate our readers emailing us and expressing their opinions. Ad hominem attacks not so much.  There is no doubt that our Sea Shepherd post has energized a certain contingent.  What continues to bother me is that people believe certain that topics or institutions are above critical examination.  You cannot critique religion or church, United States government, conservation organizations, nonprofits, and many others.  To do such is to be labeled antireligious, unamerican, a commie pinko bastard or, as purported by D.L., a person supporting whaling  by the Japanese.  But a firm commitment to any cause, including conservation, is a consistent reexamination to ensure that goals are being met.  T0 proceed in an ineffective manner that wastes time and funds, or is even detrimental to the cause, does a disservice to stakeholders, donors, and those dedicated to the particular mission at hand.

To not regularly reexamine an organization’s actions means you deteriorate the very cause you are working for. Sea Shepherd consistently dodges criticisms and point to anecdotes that favor its positions without providing evidence that can be corroborated by an uninvolved party.  Currently, there is more support for whale conservation than ever among the public.  You would be hard pressed to find someone who says “Let’s kill the whales!” A thoughtful and strategic plan that capitalizes on this growing public support is likely to make great advancements.  Yet Sea Shepherd has adopted an ecoterrorism approach instead of environmentalism, polarizing the public much the same way PETA and the Animal Liberation Front do.  A peer-reviewed, academic paper written by experts on global terrorism trends and Sea Shepherd  found it difficult to classify the organization

“… we also note that on the one hand, it may be possible to argue that in some respects the Sea Shepherds may constitute either a “blind spot” in the literature on terrorism and political violence, because its actions could in some circumstances be considered activism, militant direct action, piracy, vigilantism, terrorism, or eco-defense, which makes it very difficult to classify. On the other hand, that both the Sea Shepherds and the whalers may both engage in illegal activities, but are not prosecuted, may indicate that states and the international community may have neither the will nor the means to enforce laws against them. Therefore, they may be turning a blind eye to their actions.”

The authors concluded that

“Despite the ambiguity surrounding their legal status and academic interpretations of their actions, the results of nearly three decades of the organization’s activities, including its 2007 campaign to disrupt Japanese Antarctic Whaling, suggest that the Sea Shepherds may be best categorized as a vigilante group, because they claim they are seeking to enforce a legal status quo because of states’ and the international community’s inabilities or unwillingness to do so.”

If we look at the United Nations Convention on the High Seas (Article 101) and the Convention on the Law of the Sea the definition of piracy is

(a) any illegal acts of violence or detention, or any act of depredation committed for private ends by the crew or the passengers of a private ship or a private aircraft, and directed

(i) on the high seas, against another ship or aircraft, or against persons or property on board such ship or aircraft
(ii) against a ship, aircraft, persons or property in a place outside the jurisdiction of any State;

(b) any act of voluntary participation in the operation of the ship or of an aircraft with knowledge of facts making it a pirate ship or aircraft.

Sea Shepherd are pirates (and characterize themselves as such), and many countries (Canada, Britain, Australia, New Zealand, Belize, United States) now have revoked registry for the group.  Sea Shepherd cannot fly several countries’ flags in disregard of maritime law.

GreenPeace has even criticized Sea Shepard:

Paul Watson became active with Greenpeace in 1971 as a member of our second expedition against nuclear weapons testing in Amchitka, and went on to participate in actions against whaling and the killing of harp seals.  He was an influential early member but not, as he sometimes claims, a founder. He was expelled from the leadership of Greenpeace in 1977 by a vote of 11 to one (only Watson himself voted against it). Bob Hunter (one of Greenpeace’s early leaders, after whom a Sea Shepherd vessel was named) described the event in his book, the Greenpeace Chronicles:

‘No one doubted his [Watson's] courage for a moment. He was a great warrior brother. Yet in terms of the Greenpeace gestalt, he seemed possessed by too powerful a drive, too unrelenting a desire to push himself front and center, shouldering everyone else aside… He had consistently gone around to other offices, acting out the role of mutineer. Everywhere he went, he created divisiveness… We all felt we’d got trapped in a web no one wanted to see develop, yet now that it had, there was nothing to do but bring down the axe, even if it meant bringing it down on the neck of our brother.”

Watson founded his own group, Sea Shepherd, in 1977.

  • in 1986, Sea Shepherd carried out an action against the Icelandic whaling station in Hvalfjoerdur and sank two Icelandic whaling vessels in Reykjavik harbor by opening their sea valves;[1]
  • in December 1992, Sea Shepherd sank the vessel Nybroena in port;[2]
  • Sea Shepherd claimed to have sank the Taiwanese drift net ship Jiang Hai in port in Taiwan and to have rammed and disabled four other Asian drift net ships;[3]
  • a Canadian court ordered Watson and his former ship, the Cleveland Armory, to pay a total of $35,000 for ramming a Cuban fishing vessel off the coast of Newfoundland in June 1993;[4]
  • in January 1994 the group severely damaged the whaling ship Senet in the Norwegian port of Gressvik.[5]

Each of the whaling ships noted above was refloated and refitted for continued whaling…Although Paul Watson is a vehement anti-whaling activist, he regularly lends his support to attacks on Greenpeace — some of them organized by the whalers themselves. [8]…We passionately want to stop whaling, and will do so peacefully. That’s why we won’t help Sea Shepherd. Greenpeace is committed to non-violence and we’ll never, ever, change that; not for anything. If we helped Sea Shepherd to find the whaling fleet we’d be responsible for anything they did having got that information, and history shows that they’ve used violence in the past, in the most dangerous seas on Earth. For us, non-violence is a non-negotiable, precious principle. Greenpeace will continue to act to defend the whales, but will never attack or endanger the whalers.We differ with Paul Watson on what constitutes violence. He states that nobody has ever been harmed by a Sea Shepherd action.  But the test of non-violence is the nature of your action, not whether harm results or not.  There are many acts of violence — for example, holding a gun to someone’s head — which result in no harm.  That doesn’t change their nature. We believe that throwing butryic acid at the whalers, dropping cables to foul their props, and threatening to ram them in the freezing waters of the Antarctic constitutes violence because of the potential consequences. The fact that the consequences have not been realized is irrelevant. In addition to being morally wrong, we believe the use of violence in protection of whales to be a tactical error. If there’s one way to harden Japanese public opinion and ensure whaling continues, it’s to use violent tactics against their fleet. It’s wrong because it puts human lives at risk, and it’s wrong because it makes the whalers stronger in Japan…Disabling a ship at sea in the Antarctic, regardless of how much one may object to its activities, is not only a callous act of disregard for human life — it’s courting an environmental disaster in one of the most fragile environments in the world. (see article at GreenPeace for information on footnotes, especially [8])

From a New York Times article

In “Earthforce!,” Watson advises readers to make up facts and figures when they need to, and to deliver them to reporters confidently, “as Ronald Reagan did.” Several years after ramming the Sierra, Watson gave himself the title of captain, though he does not have a captain’s license. “He loves to dress up in uniform, as ‘Captain Paul Watson,’ and suddenly there’s enough gold braid on his shoulders to skipper the Queen Mary,” David Sellers, an old friend and former Sea Shepherd crew member, told me. In the eighties, Sellers and Watson fought so bitterly over the seaworthiness of Watson’s ship that they did not speak for fifteen years. (Sellers, a licensed captain, had insisted that it was not safe for ocean travel.) Many of Watson’s colleagues from the seventies and eighties no longer work with him; they have grown tired either of the campaigns or of Watson’s style of leadership—“anarchy run by God,” a longtime volunteer called it. “He doesn’t like people who disagree with him.”

Watson’s brand of truthiness is often criticized by other conservation organizations and conservationists. Even among organizations who have similar end goals, they are deemed as destructive to the overall cause of conservation. Yet those opposing Watson’s acts, people often very committed to the ultimate cause, are demonized by the organization’s supporters.  The general public is often turned off by the extremism.  Reducing your support, dividing your base, making enemies of your compatriots, and relying on blind faith is not effective conservation.

Whether we here at DSN have accomplished anything for marine conservation through our writings, research, volunteering, support of effective organizations like MCBI, Oceana, or CORAL, is for our readers to decide. We may not be experts in how to accomplish conservation, but we are certainly knowledgeable enough to understand how to not achieve said goals.

Nagtzaam, G., & Lentini, P. (2008). Vigilantes on the High Seas?: The Sea Shepherds and Political Violence Terrorism and Political Violence, 20 (1), 110-133 DOI: 10.1080/09546550701723658

-Signed Dr. M and Kevin Z

Dr. M (1628 Posts)

Craig McClain is the Assistant Director of Science for the National Evolutionary Synthesis Center, created to facilitate research to address fundamental questions in evolutionary science. He has conducted deep-sea research for 11 years and published over 40 papers in the area. He has participated in dozens of expeditions taking him to the Antarctic and the most remote regions of the Pacific and Atlantic. Craig’s research focuses mainly on marine systems and particularly the biology of body size, biodiversity, and energy flow. He focuses often on deep-sea systems as a natural test of the consequences of energy limitation on biological systems. He is the author and chief editor of Deep-Sea News, a popular deep-sea themed blog, rated the number one ocean blog on the web and winner of numerous awards. Craig’s popular writing has been featured in Cosmos, Science Illustrated, American Scientist, Wired, Mental Floss, and the Open Lab: The Best Science Writing on the Web.





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37 comments on “We Get Mail – Sea Shepherd Shenanigans Edition
  1. To Dr. M and Kevin Z,
    To be clear: SSCS are an interventionist organization specializing in intervening against unlawful activities that exploit marine habitats and wildlife as defined under international conservation law.
    Just a few things to point out about your article:

    1) It would be nice if you could spell ‘Sea Shepherd’ correctly not as ‘Sheppard’ in your title.
    2) The peer reviwed paper (which I have in full) could not find a way of classifying SSCS as ‘pirates’ or any of their actions as ‘piracy’. SSCS actions are carefully planned and executed to never cause harm to any persons on the whaling ships and all actions are not carried out for ‘private ends’ (ref article 101). Only when our enemies called us pirates, we responded by designing our own Jolly Roger.
    3) SSCS are not ecoterrorists (or terrorists) as you sometimes imply. The Japanese whalers are not ‘terrorised’ or harmed by SSCS actions. SSCS actions are designed to prevent whales from being processed or harpooned by targetting the ‘illegal ships’ in ways which hamper their operations in regards to whale hunting or in ways which force their ships to run from SSCS thus preventing any whales from being killed or transferred between ships.
    4) SSCS actions has tremendous success against the Illegal Japanese whaling in the Antactic whale sanctuary. We have cost the Japanese whaling industry their profits for five years and cut their quotas almost in half. This last voyage saved 305 whales. We saved 500+ in 2007/2008, 500+ in 2006/2007 and 83 whales in 2005/2006. We have the Japanese whaling fleet in debt and we will keep the pressure on until we bankrupt the industry and whaling ends.
    5) You cannot be ‘violent’ against a piece of machinery. Ships scuttled by SSCS in recent years have always been unoccupied by either humans or animals (and SSCS goes to a great deal of effort to ensure this). Some of these ships may well have been refloated but only after massive costly repairs to electrical an other systems together with the impact this makes on their whaling as they cannot hunt while their ship is in dry dock for lenghty repairs.
    6) The Butyric Acid used against the whaling ships is dilute and less acidic than orange juice. It is merely a foul smelling organic chemical used to contaminate whale processing surfaces and used to make the decks of the whaling ships a very unpleasnt place to work on (it also breaks down very rapidly in seawater causing no pollution).
    7) We dont threaten to ‘Ram’ or sink ships in the Antarctic as you imply. In the past there have been collisions between SSCS and Japanese ships (caused by manouvers by either side) none of which have endangered life or cause anything more than superficial damage.
    8) Revocation of ship registries has always been due to pressure exerted by Japan or Canada (due to successful SSCS campaigns against whaling or seal hunting) and has not been due to any ‘illegal’ activities commited by SSCS in the waters of other countries which have withdrawn registry staus on SSCS ships.
    9) SSCS has repeatedly offered the coordinates of the Japanese ships to Greenpeace even though Greenpeace refuse to divulge the same to SSCS. SSCS volunteers are not generally anti-greenpeace either and both groups supporters work together more often than you may think. In the end there is a place for both groups in the anti-whaling movement. Sea Shepherd is saving whales TODAY, while Greenpeace work (in their own way) to try to stop Japans sham Research Antarctic whaling in the future by use of mass-mailing and other publicity campaigns. Note however that for their millions raised to ‘save the whales’ over the last year and a half that Greenpeace failed to send a single ship to the Antarctic. Also note that when Greenpeace are in contact with the Japanese whaling fleet that the whalers continue to hunt the majestic whales (not so when an SSCS vessel is present).
    10) Since 1977, SSCS have had over 4,000 volunteers and employees with the society. Out of these only a dozen or so have left bitter and disgruntled and have made it their business to attempt to discredit or embarrass Sea Shepherd and of course you jumped straight onto their bandwagon in your article.

    Finally some words from Paul Watson himself:
    “Some people may not agree with our methods but our clients are not people. We represent the interests of the great whales and as long as we are not causing injury to humans and as long as we are not in violation of the law, then our actions are justified.
    If I were a “terrorist” or even a criminal, I would be in jail. It’s as simple as that.
    There are more than 1,500 whales swimming freely in the waters off ..Antarctica.. that would now be dead if not for our intervention. These are results that we are proud of that make all the risks worthwhile.”

    • I apologize for the misspelling, it has been corrected in the title and in the text. Also, I apologize if your original post got caught by our moderation software. New commenters (i.e. IP addresses) must be approved.

  2. Mmmm, whale meat!!

    Since Sea Shepherd now has several ships (a small fleet perhaps) I’m surprised we haven’t seen a press release about the promotion of Mr. Watson to Rear-Admiral or Captain-of-the-fleet yet.

  3. Wow – so much for freedom of speech…… Just a few minutes and you remove my reply to your article!
    So here it is again:

    To be clear: SSCS are an interventionist organization specializing in intervening against unlawful activities that exploit marine habitats and wildlife as defined under international conservation law.
    Just a few things to point out about your article:

    1) It would be nice if you could spell ‘Sea Shepherd’ correctly not as ‘Sheppard’ in your title.
    2) The peer reviwed paper (which I have in full) could not find a way of classifying SSCS as ‘pirates’ or any of their actions as ‘piracy’. SSCS actions are carefully planned and executed to never cause harm to any persons on the whaling ships and all actions are not carried out for ‘private ends’ (ref article 101). Only when our enemies called us pirates, we responded by designing our own Jolly Roger.
    3) SSCS are not ecoterrorists (or terrorists) as you sometimes imply. The Japanese whalers are not ‘terrorised’ or harmed by SSCS actions. SSCS actions are designed to prevent whales from being processed or harpooned by targetting the ‘illegal ships’ in ways which hamper their operations in regards to whale hunting or in ways which force their ships to run from SSCS thus preventing any whales from being killed or transferred between ships.
    4) SSCS actions has tremendous success against the Illegal Japanese whaling in the Antactic whale sanctuary. We have cost the Japanese whaling industry their profits for five years and cut their quotas almost in half. This last voyage saved 305 whales. We saved 500+ in 2007/2008, 500+ in 2006/2007 and 83 whales in 2005/2006. We have the Japanese whaling fleet in debt and we will keep the pressure on until we bankrupt the industry and whaling ends.
    5) You cannot be ‘violent’ against a piece of machinery. Ships scuttled by SSCS in recent years have always been unoccupied by either humans or animals (and SSCS goes to a great deal of effort to ensure this). Some of these ships may well have been refloated but only after massive costly repairs to electrical an other systems together with the impact this makes on their whaling as they cannot hunt while their ship is in dry dock for lenghty repairs.
    6) The Butyric Acid used against the whaling ships is dilute and less acidic than orange juice. It is merely a foul smelling organic chemical used to contaminate whale processing surfaces and used to make the decks of the whaling ships a very unpleasnt place to work on (it also breaks down very rapidly in seawater causing no pollution).
    7) We dont threaten to ‘Ram’ or sink ships in the Antarctic as you imply. In the past there have been collisions between SSCS and Japanese ships (caused by manouvers by either side) none of which have endangered life or cause anything more than superficial damage.
    8) Revocation of ship registries has always been due to pressure exerted by Japan or Canada (due to successful SSCS campaigns against whaling or seal hunting) and has not been due to any ‘illegal’ activities commited by SSCS in the waters of other countries which have withdrawn registry staus on SSCS ships.
    9) SSCS has repeatedly offered the coordinates of the Japanese ships to Greenpeace even though Greenpeace refuse to divulge the same to SSCS. SSCS volunteers are not generally anti-greenpeace either and both groups supporters work together more often than you may think. In the end there is a place for both groups in the anti-whaling movement. Sea Shepherd is saving whales TODAY, while Greenpeace work (in their own way) to try to stop Japans sham Research Antarctic whaling in the future by use of mass-mailing and other publicity campaigns. Note however that for their millions raised to ‘save the whales’ over the last year and a half that Greenpeace failed to send a single ship to the Antarctic. Also note that when Greenpeace are in contact with the Japanese whaling fleet that the whalers continue to hunt the majestic whales (not so when an SSCS vessel is present).
    10) Since 1977, SSCS have had over 4,000 volunteers and employees with the society. Out of these only a dozen or so have left bitter and disgruntled and have made it their business to attempt to discredit or embarrass Sea Shepherd and of course you jumped straight onto their bandwagon in your article.
    11) As for violence… The Japanese accuse Sea Shepherd of trying to obstruct their props with ropes yet the whalers have been trying to do the same thing to the Sea Shepherd ship Steve Irwin. They are accusing the Sea Shepherd crew of throwing rotten butter (which the Japanese refer to as “acid”) at them yet the whalers are throwing golf balls and chunks of metal at the Steve Irwin crew. In addition, the Japanese are blasting the Sea Shepherd crew with water cannons and Long Range Acoustical weapons – a sonic gun that causes disorientation, nausea and deafness. They have also taken armed coastguard with them into the Antarctic treaty zone which is illegal in itself, and those coastguard have targetted Sea Shepherds crew with military grade flashbangs.

    Finally some words from Paul Watson himself:
    “Some people may not agree with our methods but our clients are not people. We represent the interests of the great whales and as long as we are not causing injury to humans and as long as we are not in violation of the law, then our actions are justified.
    If I were a “terrorist” or even a criminal, I would be in jail. It’s as simple as that.
    There are more than 1,500 whales swimming freely in the waters off ..Antarctica.. that would now be dead if not for our intervention. These are results that we are proud of that make all the risks worthwhile.”

  4. For the record, Bob Hunter, the creator and first President of Greenpeace later was to join Sea Shepherd on their missions to stop illegal long-lining and drift netting, major destructive practices in the oceans. He believed that Greenpeace had gone too soft, and was not effective in its tactics of activism, becoming more of corporate brand name. If you are using the ocean by scooping out the life to make a living, you are contributing to the ocean’s demise. It is no longer a way of life that can continue.

  5. You’re being soft on them.
    By most countries definition, a vigilante group that uses bombs and limpet mines is terrorist organisation.

  6. That’s okay Eric, I’m content with the title Captain although in truth we are indeed building a fleet. As for criticisms, we don’t really care. We don’t do what we do for people. People are the problem. Our clients are the whales, the sharks, and the dolphins and from the citizens of the sea I have not heard a single complaint about our actions. So those who disagree with us can talk, talk, talk, until the the sea-cows come home, it is really of no consequence to us. If it takes pirates to stop ecological criminals than pirates we shall be.

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  8. I am against the slaughter of whales and I support Sea Shepherd because they put their money where their mouth is. Greenpeace really has become a joke and the only green thing about them, these days,is the colour of the millions of crisp green notes they receive every month.

  9. Folks, arguing with the SSCS “faithful” is like herding cats, that happen to be on fire, in a fuel depot, on a Tuesday.

    They represent the worst of the conservation movement as far as I can tell. They fabricate gross media distortions, and then they hold out a tin cup for donations sucking the air out of the room for other credible NGO’s.

    I find it ironic that Paul Watson has spent the past 30 years railing against big pharma, big oil, big car companies and yet is participating in Whale Wars. SSCS have devolved into using the horrors of whaling to sell advertising for everything they stand against.

    There’s a term for this, it’s called Eco-Edutainment Television. Full stop.

    “We’re in Conservation Bizzaro Land boys, Rico – pull aside that Green Curtain and let’s get a look at that wizard in there.”

    Sadly, when you do pull aside the Green Curtain as many of us have, we discover a sad little man from Canada without a clue.

  10. Gee Patric, sounds like someone is a little jealous. I detect the distinct odour or sour grapes. We have cut the Japanese kill quotas in half for three years and we have cost them tens of millions of dollars in lost profits and quite frankly that’s all that concerns me. How many whales have you saved Patric? In fact what exactly have you done? I’ve never heard of you. You sound like one of those armchair critics who get their kicks from mouthing off. I hate to disappoint you but I’m not sad and I don’t think I am “little.” But if it makes you feel better, please go on stroking your bitterness and believing in the fruits of your bile.

  11. Patric is a shark conservationist and unimpeachable shark advocate. He’s probably done more for sharks this week than Sea Shepherd has ever done.

    Of course, when your official stance is “we don’t give a damn what other people think” then what makes you any different from any organization that refuses independent analysis. Your apathy towards critical assessment is why Sea Shepherd has consistently failed for 30 years. You’re the Kim Jong Il of environmentalism.

  12. “As for criticisms, we don’t really care. We don’t do what we do for people. People are the problem.” CPW

    So, if you don’t really care about people or what people say than why are you wasting your precious whale-saving time on a science blog design for people to read and not whales?

  13. Hey Kevin & Dr. M. I see a flurry of protest at this entry not unlike the tactics of a certian un-named powerful cult :-/ Shepherd, Sheppard schmeppard…we know who you are…Anyway, throwing my small voice into the chorus, WELL DONE on a well written blog! I do feel personally conflicted about the whole whaling thing – part of me wants to see the bastards hung up and sliced & diced a la harpooned whale. The other wants to be better than that, and continue to protest through education and less (possible illegal) avenues. One of the problem as I see is of culture clash. The Japanese won’t back down – even in the face of direst action – because it may be seen as a loss of face, which is worse than soul death. Anyway, something to think on……

    B.T.W. on a lighter note – we have Dr. M, and have had Dr. E…….when do we get to see Dr. Z? Go Kevin!

    Have a great week-end :-)

  14. I agree with Andrew’s post. Well done and researched blog! Maybe the initial commenter, D.L. should take spelling lessons!

  15. Andrew,

    It is much like I feel. It is my opinion that Sea Shepherd may have in fact nationalized the whaling industry. While there is no doubt many Japanese people abhor whaling, no one like to see their country unfairly targeted. It has made the issue one of Japanese pride, against an outsider telling them what to do.

    As long as graduate stipends are around 20K USD/year you will never see a “Dr. Z”. I have a family of 4 to support and cannot justify putting us even further in poverty than we already are. Thanks for the vote of confidence though!

  16. Are violent and dangerous means justified if your cause is “noble”? I dislike the whalers but I also dislike Watson and the Sea Shepherds. Both violate the law. Still, I do not believe that gives anyone the right to take to the sea to ram either’s ships or foul either’s props. The Southern Ocean is one of the most dangerous seas in the world where the ability to maneuver your ship can mean the difference between life and death. Disabling a ship puts it at the mercy of sudden violent storms, rogue waves large enough to capsize ships, and the ice. If you watch “Whale Wars” it is very obvious that the Sea Shepherds are the aggressor in every single encounter.

  17. I doubt that was Watson, if so Kudos to Dr.G:

    “As for criticisms, we don’t really care. We don’t do what we do for people. People are the problem.” CPW

    So, if you don’t really care about people or what people say than why are you wasting your precious whale-saving time on a science blog design for people to read and not whales?

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  19. Japan’s continued and expanded program of scientific whaling is inconsistent with its obligations under the Law of the Sea Convention, the International Convention for the Regulation of Whaling Convention, the Convention on the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR), and the Convention on Biological Diversity to protect and preserve the marine environment, to protect rare and fragile ecosystems and endangered species, to prepare environmental impact assessments when changes to the marine environment are likely to be caused by its activities, and to refrain from claiming resources under the guise of marine scientific research. This program is not legitimately “scientific” because it has not been
    peer-reviewed and does not have precise quantifiable goals. It is
    inconsistent with Japan’s obligations under the Convention on Biological
    Diversity because reduces the sustainability of whale species and has
    “adverse impacts on biological diversity.” It is unquestionably an abuse of right because it invokes Article VIII of the Whaling Convention in a manner that certainly was unanticipated by the framers of the Convention and has been repeatedly condemned by the majority of the other contracting parties to the Convention.
    Japan’s actions can be challenged by concerned states in the International Court of Justice or through the dispute resolution procedures of the Law of the Sea Convention and the conciliation procedures of the Convention on Biological Diversity.
    Plus a few other irregularities like IWC regulations and other conventions being breeched

  20. I’m trying to view this in the 5.2.7.2 revision of the google chrome web browser and the content looks sorta wierd. I think you should it out.

  21. @ Jonathan
    Looks fine in Google Chrome on my machine.

    Perhaps your comment is a fraud and merely excuse to link to your webpage trying to hock your goods to the public? Too bad I removed the link to your webpage.

  22. Great blog! Thank you for making the effort!
    Big thumbs up for Ady, a new technologically advanced deep sea coral reef. Way to go!

    By the way – whale meat is very tasty. Cheers.

  23. arent you worried about being shot? if you attack another vessel….they may use force…

  24. no matter what your cause, if you are videotaped attacking another vessel, shouldn’t you expect to be attacked…what if the japanese fleet sank the sea shephard vessels….everyone knows that there is going to be a confrontation…

  25. Not sure if adding my 2 to 3 cents worth will enrage or inspire. Reading this however I noted a number of things that made me laugh. The SSCS first destroys a number of ships in port but that’s okay cause they are whale ships. Under that logic, it’s perfectly acceptable to destroy a car in a parking lot because a drug dealer owns it. Then a poster said you can’t be violent against machinery… so a roadside bomb in Iraq used to blow up a Humvee is not an act of violence???
    I am in support of any effort to curtail illegal activities of ANY organization, this includes the ILLEGAL vandals of the Sea Shepperd fleet. Another post said that the SSCS has been barred from operations from several countries because the countries have been influenced by the Japanese. I would like to point out that video evidence depicted by :Whale Wars: shows complete disregard for the US Coast Guard rules of navigation and I quote the rule here:
    RULE 18
    RESPONSIBILITIES BETWEEN VESSELS

    Except where Rules 9, 10, and 13 otherwise require:

    (a) A power-driven vessel underway shall keep out of the way of:

    1. a vessel not under command;
    2. a vessel restricted in her ability to maneuver;
    3. a vessel engaged in fishing;
    4. a sailing vessel.
    Please read (a) 3. A VESSEL ENGAGED IN FISHING.

    Though I commend any person that is willing and able to stand up and “fight” for what they feel is “right”… two wrongs do not constitute a “right”.
    NOTE: This rule does NOT specify that it has to be Legal.

    You are free to conspire reasons why the US would not allow this rouge vessel to operate within her waters but there is no denying that this group shows blatant disregard to vandal laws, trespassing laws, criminal damage laws, the safety of crews the safe operation of their vessels.

    One final Note of laughter:
    “SSCS actions has tremendous success against the Illegal Japanese whaling in the Antactic whale sanctuary. We have cost the Japanese whaling industry their profits for five years and cut their quotas almost in half. This last voyage saved 305 whales. We saved 500+ in 2007/2008, 500+ in 2006/2007 and 83 whales in 2005/2006. We have the Japanese whaling fleet in debt and we will keep the pressure on until we bankrupt the industry and whaling ends.”

    To the above numbers I have but only two words: PROVE IT.

  26. After thought:

    RULE 8
    ACTION TO AVOID COLLISION

    (a) Any action taken to avoid collision shall be taken in accordance with the Rules of this Part and [Intl] shall, if the circumstances of the case admit, be positive, made in ample time and with due regard to the observance of good seamanship.

    (b) Any alteration of course and/or speed to avoid collision shall, if the circumstances of the case admit, be large enough to be readily apparent to another vessel observing visually or by radar; a succession of small alterations of course and/or speed should be avoided.

    (c) If there is sufficient sea room, alteration of course alone may be the most effective action to avoid a close-quarters situation provided that it is made in good time, is substantial and does not result in another close-quarters situation.

    (d) Action taken to avoid collision with another vessel shall be such as to result in passing at a safe distance. The effectiveness of the action shall be carefully checked until the other vessel is finally past and clear.

    (e) If necessary to avoid collision or allow more time to asses the situation, a vessel may slacken her speed or take all way off by stopping or reversing her means of propulsion.

    (f)

    1. A vessel which, by any of these rules, is required not to impede the passage or safe passage of another vessel shall, when required by the circumstances of the case, take early action to allow sufficient sea room for the safe passage of the other vessel.
    2. A vessel required not to impede the passage or safe passage of another vessel is not relieved of this obligation if approaching the other vessel so as to involve risk of collision and shall, when taking action, have full regard to the action which may be required by the rules of this part.
    3. A vessel, the passage of which is not to be impeded remains fully obliged to comply with the rules of this part when the two vessels are approaching one another so as to involve risk of collision.

  27. WhySharksMatter
    .Watson does call himself “Admiral” it wont be lomg before he’s calling himself “Rear Admiral” by then we all hope we see the rear of this con man as he leaves the planet for good. Strange how he creeps around reading every comment he can find and commenting himself.Is this to intimidate people becuse thats what he does as well as inciting the whalers to keep on whaling. . he terrorises and stalks people who dont agree with him. He belongs at the bottom of the ocean.

    “I like the cause because the methods are illegal and wrong.” -Paul Waton.

    “I’ve known the guy (Watson) for 15 years, and he’s absolutely insane, out of his mind.”
    — Jim Boland, Greenpeace co-founder

    “I don’t give a damn what you think because I am in charge and people WILL listen to me” -Paul Watson

    ‘I am the world’s most experienced ship rammer. I have been ramming ships since I first knocked the pirate whaler Sierra out of business in July 1979.’

    “You people are full of **** and have no clue what you are talking about, your nothing more than insignificant hominids” – Paul Watson.

  28. Finally some words from Paul Watson himself:
    “Some people may not agree with our methods but our clients are not people. We represent the interests of the great whales and as long as we are not causing injury to humans and as long as we are not in violation of the law, then our actions are justified.
    If I were a “terrorist” or even a criminal, I would be in jail. It’s as simple as that.
    There are more than 1,500 whales swimming freely in the waters off ..Antarctica.. that would now be dead if not for our intervention. These are results that we are proud of that make all the risks worthwhile.”

    BLAH BLAH BLAH BLAH . .. . Paul “cultist” Watson claims he “represents the interests of the whales” . I claim he represents the best interests of himself and himself only with repeated requests for donations which have made this charlatan a millionaire living the easy life of a self indulgent media whoring pretensious celebrity who only cares about himself only ,constant publicity which he instigates, and a massive bank account courtesy of millions of dollars in donations – he doesnt even pay tax. Watson cooks the books so he never gets charged with fraud as he surrounds himself with like minded criminals and thugs. He brainwashes youth who have no direction in life who become his motley crew he then treats them like the parasites he regards all humans, he fakes collisions at sea , boat ramming and scuttling, he doesnt know fact from fiction , he is a liar and a con man. He should not be allowed to influence the young and swagger through life as this god like hero when in actual fact he is a dangerous psycho who should be locked up.

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