Sea Shepard’s Triumph: Japan Gives Up Whaling

Several years ago, my friend adventure writer Peter Heller wrote a book about chasing down Japanese whalers in the Southern Ocean. He spent time on the Sea Shepard’s vessel and ended up writing a book about it.  I thought a lot about what those Japanese fishermen must have felt as they were stinkbombed, nearly ran into, and hassled relentlessly by the people in the organization who made it their life’s work to stop whaling.

Last night I read a of a miraculous change of heart–The Japanese government has decided to immediately suspend fishing licenses to whalers and will no longer kill 1000 whales a year in the name of scientific research.  They decided that they don’t want to be hated any more, and that being a pariah in the eyes of so many whale lovers just isn’t a good thing.  With all of their tsnuami, earthquake and nuclear problems, I can’t blame them.

How wonderful that must be, to be Paul Brown, captain of the vessel Steve Irwin,  a man who has chased these whalers for decades.  You won, sir, you got what you wanted.  To anyone with a cause, no matter how futile, and no matter how hard the opposition resists, things like this DO happen.

Now the Sea Shepard has one target country left–Iceland. I think it won’t be too long until they too, decide that the wrath of the Sea Shepards, backed up by thousands of financial backers, is not worth fighting any more.