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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



Aussie vote influencing at the IWC

Earlier this year in June Ian Campbell (who I have criticised on various occassions) recorded an interview with Australia's Radio National Breakfast program.

"I think Australian's would share with myself and Alexander Downer and our Prime Minister a very deep concern for Nauru's future that we find out that they have decided to join a push led by Japan."

One wonders why Campbell has a such a deep concern? Is that a threat?

Then here comes the Announcer, Fran Bailey:
"It is disappointing, as you say, we have strong aide ties with Nauru; we give them a lot of support. I mean how much pressure has been brought to bear on that country, to not do this, not vote to open up whaling again?"

Ahem! For a media who craps on and on about how Japan is supposedly "buying" votes at the IWC with ODA packages, isn't this just a little bit too rich?

Next we have Campbell questioning why Nauru joined the IWC:
"Well the very fact they've joined the IWC would have to ask ... why they would choose to join this international body, the main function of which is to control whaling and conserve whales, why they would get involved?"

Nauru is a small island nation, now poor in resources, dependant on fishieries for their food security. Clearly they understand nature and that they live in a multi-species eco-system. They know that placing blanket protections on one type of animal (whales) without considering the negative implications for other species (their tuna stocks for example) is an irresponsible action which could have terrible consequences for their people.

On the contrary, one wonders why Australia is a member of this international body when their goal is not to control whaling but to destroy it, and not to conserve whales but to protect them wholesale, regardless of scientific considerations?

And for yet more ignorance from Senator Campbell:
"And it's not just about Japan, Norway and Iceland. If we have a majority vote for this it would ultimately lead to any nation in the world wanting to get back into commercial whaling."

So what? Just because Australia would have the right to hunt whales commercially, doesn't mean they have to!

And finally:
"[The Japanese, Norwegians and Icelanders] are designing a scheme, basically what is a fisheries plan, to go out and hunt whales. And that plan would set quotas, it would have arrangements for vessel monitoring - all the sorts of things that we would have for a cod fishery or a tuna fishery or a sardine fishery - they have a plan they are putting together to organise the control of commercial whaling."

Yes Ian, that's the whole point! Yet it was he himself commenting earlier in the piece that the whole point of the IWC is to "control whaling and conserve whales". What doesn't he understand about that?

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