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David @ Tokyo

Perspective from Japan on whaling and whale meat, a spot of gourmet news, and monthly updates of whale meat stockpile statistics



IWC 2005: Chris Carter isn't any less ignorant this year

Chris Carter last year got special mention from the IWMC after last year's IWC meeting for the "Most Ludicrous Claim", as well being described as "excitable", "badly-informed", having "no knowledge, and even less interest, about whale populations. In the world of Mr. Carter all whales are on the brink of extinction"
Well done Chris!

I'm not going to be surprised if he takes similar honours again this year, judging by his pre-IWC comments to the NZHerald.

He was responding to the following comments from a Mr Moronuki of the Japanese Fisheries Agency:

"Countries such as Australia and New Zealand say they would not let a single whale be hunted no matter how healthy whale stocks are. These fanatic anti-whaling countries may also include Italy, Germany and Britain. But there are some other anti-whaling countries that are a bit cooler".

In response:

Conservation Minister Chris Carter, who heads to the annual IWC meeting in Korea today, called Mr Moronuki's comments "extremist" and "militant" and said he did not believe they represented Japan's official position.

Carter should be ashamed of himself, and so should the entire country. Mr Moronuki said nothing controversial, and certainly nothing "extreme". Yet Carter has chosen to describe Moronuki's comments as "militant"? Where on earth did that come from? "Militant" is a word that is more suitably used to describe terrorists than Japanese fisheries agency officials. This comparison is totally inappropriate, and would likely be offensive to all those who have suffered at the hands of terrorism.
Further, "fanatical" is a quite appropriate word to describe the New Zealand government's position on whaling.

Carter seems determined to retain his place on IWMC's "worst list" in 2005:

"We are committed to whale conservation because they are not a plentiful species, they are a much endangered species, and I'm appalled that Japan would engage in such militant rhetoric," he said.

Poor Chris still hasn't figured it out that "whales" are not a species. There are around 80 whale species, and what's more, most of them aren't endangered.

"I'm interested in arguing the conservation values of protecting whales and the economic value."

Nor has Chris come to grips with the difference between "protecting whales" and "conservation". The Japanese position is pro-conservation - but New Zealand's stance is purely protectionist.

He said Mr Moronuki's comments did not provide a "good framework for rational debate"

Pfffffft, perhaps Chris should consider leading by example by getting a clue himself? See above...

Mr Carter said the votes this year were "extremely tight" and could balance out at 31-31 on whether Japan could expand its research programme.

Carter really has bad advisors. The new Japanese research programme can't be stopped by voting in the IWC plenary session. The Scientific Committee has had it's say on the proposed programme, and it's now up to Japan whether they implement it or not. Their right to this is determined by Article VIII of the ICRW, which Carter's government chooses to remain signatory to, not politically motivated voting at the IWC.

It's amazing that this clown ever made it into our parliament.... isn't it?
(fingers crossed)

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