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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



JARPA II 2006/2007 Update #3 - "World opinion"

New Zealand and Australia have put "world opinion" (sic) on display again.

Kiwi Minister of Conservation Hon. Chris Carter managed to muster together 27 names for his demarche:
Brazil, Chile, Peru, Mexico, United States
New Zealand
Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Monaco, the Netherlands, Portugal, San Marino, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom
Better than the meagre efforts of 12 nations (protesting at Norway) and 17 nations (Japan) earlier in the year, but of course amongst the 19 European nations included, 6 of them don't even have a coastline.

Over the ditch in Australia, "Minister for the Environment" Ian Campbell illustrated that he has fewer mates than Chris Carter, only being able to muster together 21 names:
Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Mexico, Peru, United States


Australia, New Zealand
Austria, Belgium, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, the United Kingdom

That is, the names that Carter managed to get but Campbell missed out on were Czech Republic, Hungary, San Marino, Switzerland (all landlocked) plus Monaco and new IWC member Slovenia (all European nations).

I still find myself asking where the "world" in this "world opinion" is, though? To his credit, Ian Campbell seems to have dropped the phrase from his PR, but Chris Carter has persisted with it. Why not just be honest and concede that this is essentially "European opinion", or perhaps "Anglo-saxon opinion" plus a few extras? There's not an African or Asian nation included amongst this bunch. Furthermore, with just 27 nations, less than 40% of IWC member nations have participated in this show.

Incidentally, Carter, who is having troubles back home with his portfolio, and Campbell both seem completely unaware of the situation at the IWC, both whinging that JARPA II "undermines international efforts to conserve and protect whales".

The goals stated in the ICRW are 1) to provide for the proper conservation of whale stocks and 2) to thus make possible the orderly development of the whaling industry. There is no international agreement that protecting every single individual whale (which will all die eventually regardless, as with any living creature) is appropriate. Just because these jokers and a bunch of their European politician mates think so is no justification for trying to lump this upon the rest of the nations of the world.

* * *

On a completely different note, George McCallum informs me that the Shonan Maru No. 2 has arrived in Cape Town for another 2 months of research. The Japanese government continues to be the only government stumping up with a research vessel for this work, which is directed by the IWC Scientific Committee. Last season the cruise brought back good news for the Antarctic blue whale.

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