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Feb 21, 2011

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Steve

Nice summary, but you neglect to point out that there are two areas that Japan does lethal 'research' whaling. JARPA II in the Southern Ocean, which get all the attention, and JARPA I in the North Pacific close to Japan. The Southern Ocean trips may well be off the agenda for the reasons you stated, but the North Pacific voyages are alive and well. The biggest problem facing the whalers though is not access to whales, but an ever-shrinking market for their product. The bulk of the people of whale meat consuming age are dying out and the young are by-and-large not interested in it. As a meat it is not particularly tasty, and stacks up poorly in the choice rich Japanese food market. I think they will probably be able to use the thousands of tons of whale meat they have in deep-freeze storage to cover this season, and then use JARPA I to supply their ongoing needs. Plus, Seas Shepherd won't harrass the JARPA activities for the same reason they don't interevene in the Norwegian whaling.....they will be subject to criminal proceedings and likely to be on the pointy end of aggressive resistance from Coast Guard etc. Still SS should be congratulated for their passion and persistence, it is a great result for them, but the excellent work of Greenpeace Japan should also not be ignored, especially their highlighting of corruption in the industry. It has been a combination of these factors that have brought about the current situation.

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