Australian Police Seize Unreleased Whale Wars Footage
On February 20, 2009 an Australian federal police ship pulled up next to the Steve Irwin, the Sea Sheperd Conservation Society flagship. The cops boarded Captain Paul Watson‘s vessel and served him a warrant. It authorized the seizing of “all edited and raw video footage, all edited and raw audio recordings, all still photographs, producer’s notes, interview transcripts, production meeting minutes, post production meeting minutes as well as the ship’s log books, global positioning system records, automatic radar plotting aid, purchase records, receipts, financial transaction records, voyage information and navigational plotted charts.” Most of that data belongs to the Animal Planet documentary film-makers who are collecting footage for the second seaon of Whale Wars. It’s clear that the Australian government is trying to stop the second season of Whale Wars. But why?
In 2008, Whale Wars embarrassed not only the Japanese government, but the entire Japanese whaling industry. Japan does not wish to see the airing of the second season of Whale Wars. No doubt the country is putting serious diplomatic pressure on the Australian government to prevent further exposure of their illegal whaling operations in the Southern Ocean.
“It’s a very one-sided affair,” says Captain Watson. “The Japanese ships have not been boarded by the Australian Federal Police; they have not had their video and navigational data confiscated. They have not been questioned nor will they be, yet they violently attacked my ship and crew in the Southern Ocean. Does the law only go to bat for those who destroy nature’s creation? Are we about to see the ultimate kangaroo court where Sea Shepherd will be legally crucified because the Australian government has not lived up to their promise of taking the whale killers to court? The truth is that we would not have to be in the Southern Ocean defending the whales if the governments of the world would simply enforce the international conservation treaties they once so proudly signed into law. Without enforcement there is no law – just ecological anarchy.”
Watson continued, “If need be we will be in court to answer to charges of defending endangered whales in the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary and to this we proudly plead guilty.”
Let’s show the Australian government that they cannot cover up the brutality of whale hunting and Sea Sheperd’s resistance. The DVD of the first season of Whale Wars is available from amazon. Today I’m going to buy 5 copies: 3 for family and friends and 2 to donate to my local library. What are you going to do to spread the word?
photo cred: http://flickr.com/photos/guano/3264968694
In an effort to prevent further embarrassment to the illegal Japanese whale hunting industry, Australian police siezed Animal Planet footage of Sea Sheperd crew defending whales from the illegal hunting.