Today we were visited by Yasuhiro Asai and Yukio Minami from NTV who were producing a 3 hour documentary on the biggest news stories in Japan in 2010.
It was great to have the opportunity to speak to reporters who were trying to report the facts. I learned that they did not know anything about the killing of dolphins in Taiji until the movie “The Cove” came out last year.
“The Cove” has been banned in Japan, but Sea Shepherd had Japanese copies produced. Yasuhiro Asai, the Associate Producer, was very excited to get a copy of the documentary.
Yasuhiro and Yukio stayed with us for several hours as we scanned the horizon waiting for the boats to return. It was a bad sign when they had not returned by 10:00 AM and our worst fears came true when we saw the banger boats appear in formation.
Centuries old migratory paths take many dolphins along the coast of Japan and past Taiji. When the killers spot a pod of dolphins, they form a line with their boats and extend steel poles into the water.
The ends of the poles are flared out like a bell and the killers bang on the poles with hammers to create a wall of sound that agitates and frightens the dolphins.
Thinking they are swimming away from an overwhelming wall of noise, the dolphins panic and are driven into the killing cove. Nets are pulled across the cove to prevent their escape.
Life ended today for approximately 8 Risso’s dolphins.
As always, there was a major coast guard and police presence and they had their English flash cards standing by. The Cove Guardians, who are all female, were outnumbered 2:1.
We welcome the police because they are there to protect us from the fishermen, but we also know they are ready to nail us if we threaten “commerce”.
It was a tragic day for the dolphins, but at least the Japanese media was at the Cove to report the facts. This is progress.
For the Oceans,
|Police Flash Cards Standing by....just in case...|