How is it that this isn't international piracy on the high seas? Even if you agree with their cause, they're attacking other vessels on the open seas.
As I understand it, the legal situation is extremely murky. If Japan is indeed lying about the hunt being For Science! rather than traditional whaling (as many people believe), then the vessels being attacked would frequently themselves be violating various international laws and treaties. This is most likely why no naval force ever confronts either group.
Japan's "science" is determining safe harvest levels for whenever the "moratorium" (not ban, moratorium) by the IWC is lifted. Granted, it's not going to happen, due to political pressure and all the landlocked states that are full members of a maritime commission just to keep the moratorium in place, but that's their story, and they're sticking to it.
That's not how laws work, though. If two people commit opposing crimes, they don't cancel one another out.
Also, those quotation marks are a little puzzling. Determining safe harvest levels is clearly science.
Yeah, but if the Japanese ships "might" be doing something illegal, this is different from the anti-whalers attacking them, which is definitely illegal. I don't think it makes a difference that the Japanese may or may not be doing something illegal themselves. What the anti-whalers do is illegal.
That may be true, but actually enforcing laws in international waters is nearly impossible. And both the Japanese whalers, and the Sea Shepherds, know this.
Yea but isn't the main problem is that it is very difficult to prove that any violation took place. The Sea Shepherds have a fricken' camera crew on their ship recording several illegal activities on their own boats.
Like a troper said earlier; enforcing laws in international waters is a very hard job because it almost always means military intervention which is very difficult for 2 reasons. 1: It's military intervention, and no country with a functional government is going to take the use of military power against its commercial vessels lightly. 2: Japan's military forces are strictly for self defense meaning they're essentially limited to defending their own territorial waters.
It is international piracy on the high seas. It's just unpunished international piracy on the high seas.
This troper has done his research: Sea Shepherd is actually upholding international law. Let me explain: The UN Charter for the Environment specifically says that ANYONE can uphold that law. The Japanese Whalers are clearly in violation of the Whaling Moratorium, are killing whales to sell and promote their meat, despite it being heavy with heavy metals (pun very much intended), and this meat is going to school children, and they are doing this all under the pretence of "Research", yet they haven't released a single peer reviewed paper, AND there are non-lethal ways of getting the same information, AND they are putting more money into this wasteful venture, despite it not pulling a profit, even going to the point of taking $30 Million dollars for the Tsunami Relief Fund, under the pretence that the fishing industry is crucial for Japan, and yet it is already subsidised heavily by the Japanese Government. The Japanese Whaling Program has broken international law time and time again, they have violated a 2008 injunction in the Australian Supreme Court to not enter Australia's Economic Exclusion Zone and Australian Territory, and have entered a whale sanctuary, have killed whales in said sanctuary, and have forced another nation's vessel carrying Heavy Oil into the whale sanctuary, have then damaged that vessel while actually trying to SINK a Sea Shepherd vessel, use possibly deadly force on protesters, offered no assistance to a Sea Shepherd vessel after they disabled said vessel, AS WELL AS the vessel that was carrying their fuel, (please excuse this Long List and rant), and don't you even DARE to tell me that Sea Shepherd is not empowered to uphold international law. The fact that they can do it in non-lethal ways (not a single death caused in 30 years of these tactics) shows that they can do it without harming human life. The fact that Paul Watson has not been charged with a single offence (except for falsified charges in Costa Rico and Japan) shows that what Sea Shepherd is doing is not illegal. If it were, there would not be a single port in the world that would let him in.
Pretty much all of this is hilariously wrong, and most likely taken from Sea Shepherd's own webpage.
To expand on the above debunking; if the individual above had actually done their research they would know that Sea Shepherd blatantly does not give a damn about international law and that virtually everything else is false. To start with, anybody who tells you you can do the sorts of research they are trying to do without killing the whale is selling you a load of Bullschiesten. Period, End of Story. This is why the UN Whaling Moratorium explicitly contains several exceptions. These include subsistence whaling (which is what the Faroe Islanders do) and and whaling for research (which is what the Japanese do), because the former is a humanitarian necessity and the latter is necessary to gauge how the whale population is faring at all, and which allows limited egress and hunting into Sanctuaries. Yes, the Japanese have a convenient ulterior motive for doing the research whaling because they like eating whale and this allows them to do it legally. However, not only is there nothing wrong with that but it's kept in the UN charter because somebody has to do it and if people get incentivized to do what's otherwise unprofitable and unattractive work (as you mentioned) the UN is fine with that. The Sea Shepherds are the ones in violation of international law, as shown by the fact that on top of those other facts they are claiming to enforce the sovereignty of the Australian government on its' Antarctic Claim. The fact that said Antarctic Claim is in explicit violation of international law about Antarctica, that it is recognized by nobody but Australia, that it is done on justifications that make Gaddafi's claim to the Gulf of Sidra look valid, and that Australia should by law have no authority over the area in question all go over their heads. And of course, the alleged Australian fig leaf of legitimacy can't be claimed to explain or justify their actions because without it the Sea Shepherds would go back to acting like the maritime terrorists they normally are, as shown in the Faroe Islands. As for the accusations about the Japanese misbehavior, I obviously cannot verify all the facts involved. However, the explicit repetition of outright falsehoods- like the claim that Watson has never been charged with a valid crime, that the Sea Shepherds are merely protesters, and that the Japanese tried to ram a Sea Shepherd boat- utterly discredits your claims. The Sea Shepherds' own record speaks for themselves: they are effectively pirates under maritime and international law, they have been charged under related crimes multiple times (and not just in Japan and Costa Rica, as you would know if you studied Watson's history and realized that he's largely gone there to look for softer targets after the Canadians, Norwegians, Russians, and others have nailed him), and in a more civilized time would be recognized as such and strung up. If you can't get the basic facts right and nakedly take the accusations of a proven liar and Unreliable Narrator at face value and using it to levy false slanders, you are simply being a tool in both senses of the word. Please do some actual research; I'd be happy to help. But until then, thank you and goodnight.