Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Secret Film Will Show Slaughter to the World: Covert Operation Finally Exposes Taiji's Annual Dolphin Horror.

[The fishermen] drive [the dolphins] into a "capture cove" by banging on long metal bell-ended poles placed in the water to disrupt the dolphins' sonar, causing them to become completely disorientated and panic...captured dolphins were filmed writhing in pain as Taiji whalers speared them repeatedly or cracked their spines with spiked weapons. Stricken dolphins are also shown thrashing about wildly, blood pouring from their wounds until they finally succumbed...as the killing cove's bloodied, ruby-red water swept round into the adjacent capture cove.

No matter how one feels about killing animals for food, the unnecessary and horrific violence that befalls dolphins in Taiji every year is an abomination, as is the peddling of the resulting meat (that is rife with heavy metals) to the Japanese populace in the name of tradition.

The secret filming by members of the U.S. conservation group Oceanic Preservation Society (OPS) — equipped with state-of-the-art technology and financed to the tune of $5 million by Netscape founder Jim Clark — is being turned into a major documentary feature film destined for worldwide release this summer (although distribution in Japan is at present not certain).

As a frequent visitor to Japan, I can tell you this film is a feat. The complacency of the Japanese police, the lure of tradition -- however outdated and detrimental -- and its ties to nationalism, the state-sanctioned bias and unbridled malice toward foreigners, and the mafia tactics of the fishing industry are very very real; ergo, the danger in making a film like this is very real as well.

Stars like Hayden Panettiere have recently protested Taiji, and this has helped to bring this beyond cruel slaughter to people who have never had Japan on their radar before. But I am very excited about this film as people can finally see with their own eyes that the horror stories are true. This will bring international disgrace to Japan, and I hope it will finally force the government to join the 21st century and stop this barbarism.



Blogger Mark said...

Funnily enough, I was discussing this with some friends recently. One was just back from Barbados, where the locals serve "Dolphin fish", which they refer to usually as just "dolphin". Which freaked my mate out.

But it isn't actually dolphin. It's a big tuna. Right?

April 2, 2008 at 4:55:00 AM PDT  
Blogger saudade said...

Dolphin fish isn't tuna, it's a different type of fish. It's nothing like a dolphin, and definitely not a mammal.

April 2, 2008 at 9:10:00 AM PDT  

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