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Sunday, 30 August 2009

Whaling Propaganda

PDF FileToday, Japan continues to seek a whaling quota from the IWC to provide ‘emergency relief’ to four coastal towns that it claims are still suffering financial hardship and cultural disintegration as a direct result of the ban.

Attached you'll find a Japanese leaflets in which it attempts to justify the Japanese long tradition of whaling. What it fails to explain is that the traditional whaling has either long since been replaced by international modern whaling or has grown to such a proportion that it bears no resemblance to the original traditional takes made for subsistence.

PDF FileAlso attached is a document prepared by the WDCS (Whale & Dolphin Conservation Society) that demonstrates their reasoning to be contradictory to the truth, which is that there towns actually initially benefited from the whaling ban.

Short Finned Pilot Whales

To claim that Taiji and Wada combined only have a joint quota of 50 pilot whales and 20 dolphins each year is a gross misrepresentation of the truth. Taiji alone has been recorded as slaughtering up to 2,300 dolphins a year! National figures for Japan show that each year as many as 26,000 small cetaceans (whales and dolphins) are killed each year. According to the EIA:
...16,000 Dall’s porpoises are killed in Japanese waters each year, making it the world’s largest cetacean hunt for more than a quarter of a century. Several thousand other dolphins and ‘small whales’ are killed in unsustainable coastal hunts around Japan.
It's also a misrepresentation of the facts that Japanese small type whaling has been carried out for centuries, when in reality the current method of whaling has only been around since 1947.
Although some parts of Japan have a centuries-long history of hunting in coastal waters, these particular operations, known as Small Type Whaling (STW), are a relatively new phenomenon; starting only in the early 20th century, and only officially licensed by the Government of Japan to kill minke whales since 1947.
Japan's attempts at sliding a commercial whaling agreement in under the guise of the economic distress of it's whaling towns is a blatant underhanded technique. In bringing in small type commercial whaling it would pose huge problems for the control and identification of commercial and scientific stocks and at best muddy the waters even further, such that loop-holes become bureaucratic chasms in which to negotiate.
If the Government of Japan was serious about the needs of the four towns and the ability of whaling to resolve their problems, it could have addressed the matter itself, rather than asking the IWC. It could have allowed them to reap greater benefits from JARPN under their ICR contract, including giving them the right to keep more of the meat or sell it commercially. That Japan has chosen not to do this suggests either that its claims were untrue, or that the Government does not in fact have their best interests at heart.


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