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Japan cancels next Antarctic whaling hunt after ICJ ruling

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This ICJ ruling is a brilliant godsend to Abe. What other issue can succeed in making Japan look like an improved global citizen while at the same time giving Abe a face-saving way to tell his right-wing supporters that he tried his best?

12 ( +16 / -4 )

High fives all around, happy days!

5 ( +10 / -5 )

But aggressive anti-whaling campaigns hardened sentiment among the Japanese public, who came to see the issue as an attack on differing cultural values.

This in my opinion is being way too broad a generalization and misrepresents the facts. It's a few overly strident politicians and pro-whaling groups that are putting out the crap that "all Japanese" are for whaling.

It appears to me that the overwhelming majority of Japanese are apathetic to the issue and don't care either way.

I didn't see any Japanese lining up to buy "cheap" whale meat on March 31st before the consumption tax went up. THAT alone should tell the casual viewer about the public here really cares about.

6 ( +10 / -4 )

@Yubaru I'm not so sure about that. While it's true that many Japanese don't eat whale and many haven't even tried it, I still see a great deal of defensiveness from many of these people on the subject of whaling. The issue for many in Japan is a perceived attack on Japanese values. I've even heard a coworker, who has never eaten whale. go as far as saying as this is an attempt to depict Japanese as a stereotypically cruel and bloodless race. I can't attempt to speak for a majority, but the number of people who actually eat whale and the number of people who agree with Japan's whaling is very different.

10 ( +11 / -1 )

A lot of the Japanese get defensive when anything related to Japan gets criticized. And I'm sure I'll get a reply, "it's the same everywhere! Japan is not unique!" lol.

0 ( +8 / -8 )

Why all the lies?

A “deeply disappointed” Tokyo

Really?! Did they really believe their science would be deemed appropriate? Who are their advisers?

"Whale meat is an important source of food"

Seriously?! What proportion of the Japanese population would consider whale meat an important food source? 1%?

2 ( +9 / -7 )

The headline should be ICR cancels the JARPA 2 whaling research program having realised its failure to meet the original criteria and having killed thousands of whales to produce pseudo science papers and spent trillions of public funds for the employment of so few. BTW whaling fleet going cheap?

8 ( +14 / -6 )

If Japan was smart.............it would use this as an excuse to bow out of whaling while saving a bit of face.................

But I wouldn't bet on it!

5 ( +8 / -3 )

zichiApr. 03, 2014 - 02:03PM JST

to produce pseudo science papers

Well, how can you tell it is "pseudo science"? I think you are usually reasonable, but whaling issue seems an exception.

I suggest you read the ruling.

http://www.icj-cij.org/docket/index.php?p1=3&p2=3&k=64&case=148&code=aj&p3=4

I think the dissenting opinion of Judge Yusuf is very convincing. On the other hand, opinions of Judge Greenwood from UK and Judge Bhandari from India may be of interest to you. If the majority opinion were this harsh, there would have been no room for JARPA3.

-7 ( +6 / -13 )

There seems to be no one home at the icr. Their website is like a ghost town....no mention of the icj ruling, no mention of cancelled 'research' programmes, no amendment of their it's all perfectly legal whining press releases, no nothing. Their 'Media release' spot on the Japanese-language site of the site has NEW flashing next to it, but clicking on it brings up only yet another 'Sea Shepherd is sabotaging our perfectly legal activities again' dated the 3rd of last month.

Maybe they've all just thrown in the towel, given up and gone home to cry.

I hope so.

6 ( +11 / -5 )

Well done Australia. This ruling gives the government a reason back away from international whaling without having given in, or being seen to have given in to vigilante bullies.

Wins all around.

Well, perhaps with the exception of Sea Shepherd.Now that SS no longer has this battle to fight, will they down-size? Or will they try to maintain the expanded budget afforded them from "Whale Wars" for future battles against European foes?

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Well, there goes the northern Pacific whales. I am almost certain that the Japanese will clean out the Bonin Islands whales as well as around Marcus Island. Tis' a shame that few old Japanese men still insist on whale sashimi. May the gods punish Japan by making the their fishing grounds barren.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

Yubaru: "It appears to me that the overwhelming majority of Japanese are apathetic to the issue and don't care either way."

Yes and no. They are apathetic in terms of Japan actually conducting the whaling, but many people I know certainly have an opinion -- often an angry one -- that Japan has been stopped by the world around them. Same with Taiji and the dolphin hunt; I know next to no one who goes out of their way to eat dolphin, but I know a LOT of people here who were angered by the way The Cove painted Japanese people (or at least, they FELT it painted Japanese as a whole, which is part of the problem).

Anyway, I'm very happy they've decided to scrap the hunt (for this year, at least). Good news!

5 ( +10 / -5 )

From Judge Yusuf's opinion -

It is paradoxical to conclude that something constitutes scientific research but is not for purposes thereof

It's not paradoxical at all. If I burn coal to keep warm, that burning coal will cause a certain amount of pollution. But my purpose is not to cause pollution, but to keep warm.

JARPA II is not implemented for commercial purposes

? If it's not for commercial purposes (as the Judge claims) and not for purposes of scientific research (as the Court has found), then for what purpose does the Judge imagine it is implemented? For fun? To use up surplus tax money?

Now that SS no longer has this battle to fight, will they down-size?

SS has many other battles to fight. They're currently fighting the shark cull in Australia, shark-finning around the world, the dolphin slaughters in Taiji and the Faroes, illegal fishing off the coast of West Africa, poaching in the Galapagos.....Why would they down-size?

5 ( +11 / -6 )

CH3CH0

give it up already. there'll be no JARPA 3, don't you get it? Its over!!!

8 ( +15 / -7 )

However, it has never made a secret of the fact that the whale meat from these hunts can end up on dining tables.

The usual misleading tag copy from AFP.

Ironically, one reason the whaling was ruled unscientific is that the whalers failed to meet their quotas (never mind that Sea Shepherd's piracy was instrumental in this failure). In other words, the whalers failed to kill enough whales.

-8 ( +4 / -12 )

cleoApr. 03, 2014 - 03:13PM JST

From Judge Yusuf's opinion -

It is paradoxical to conclude that something constitutes scientific research but is not for purposes thereof

It's not paradoxical at all. If I burn coal to keep warm, that burning coal will cause a certain amount of pollution. But my purpose is not to cause pollution, but to keep warm.

In your case, you have to say that "the act of burning coal to keep warm is not for the purpose of burning coal to keep warm".

JARPA II is not implemented for commercial purposes

The judge criticized the majority opinion that the court failed to establish the definition of commercial whaling, which is prohibited. The judge found that, from the way JARPA2 is carried out, JARPA2 is not implemented for commercial purposes.

-10 ( +5 / -15 )

@CH3CHO the best thing you can do now to support the whaling community in Japan is to put whale on your menu every night until you pass. but im guessing the mercury poisoning will get you first. as for Japan starting to hunt again in the Antartica, unlikely as reseach but possible as commerical whaling. which is why SS will be ready for when/if that day arises. as one poster put it. SS the police, Australia NZ the lawer, ICJ the judges. Japan call whatever you like.

4 ( +9 / -5 )

I'm not gonna crack the champagne just yet. I won't be happy until that floating abattoir 'The Nisshin Maru' is turned into coke cans. Only then will I believe in Japan's statement to stop whaling. While their whaling fleet exists they will be looking at ways to get them back into action. I'd say that this is just a media pleasing statement while the Japanese fisheries dept. looks at other loopholes to exploit. The ruling left Japan with a few possibilities in restructuring their research. It was only their current program that was banned. I have no doubt they are already planning their next bout of lethal research.

4 ( +11 / -7 )

@Nessie you didnt read it correct 50 of the rarer fin whales was probably to little, but 1000 overall whales was too much. any thing less than 1000 wouldnt be economically viable since nobody buys it. but for the recalcitrant xenophobic geriatric J politions the pride value is priceless .

3 ( +7 / -4 )

you have to say that "the act of burning coal to keep warm is not for the purpose of burning coal to keep warm".

You're telling me what I have to say??

If burning coal didn't keep me warm, I wouldn't feel the need to burn it. If there was no meat from the whaling, they wouldn't feel the need to kill whales. In either case the pollution/'research' is incidental and not the main objective. The only difference is that no one wants pollution, while real scientific research done properly (not the farce that is/was Japanese 'scientific research' whaling, with its buckets of half-digested krill and test-tube whale/cow/pig chimera experiments) can be a good thing.

6 ( +9 / -3 )

CH3CHO

Judge Greenwood's analysis of why JARPAII fails to come up to scratch as a serious scientific programme addresses this point in a way that is easy to understand:

http://www.icj-cij.org/docket/files/148/18150.pdf(Paragraphs 24 to 27)

There will be no JARPA 3. Japan can remain in the IWC and give up its whaling in the Antarctic and Southern Ocean or it can leave the IWC and resume commercial whaling just like Norway and Iceland but I don't think we'll never see a JARPA 3/

6 ( +12 / -6 )

Goodbye and good riddance!!

3 ( +8 / -5 )

Of course, I do not agree with whaling however I think people need to stop rubbing the new decision in Japans face. Japan is a very proud county and think they should be applauded for agreeing to honour the decision.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Japan cancels next Antarctic whaling hunt after ICJ ruling

This is just more proof that Japan would follow any ruling by the ICJ. Civilized nations follow the rule of international law and the rulings laid down by the ICJ.

I have read many past posts by the anti-Japan crowd that said that the ICJ would always rule in favor of Japan because it has a judge there, this ruling and Japan's actions have quashed that nonsense.

I wonder if Japan's neighbor's will now accept Japan's invitation to take their issues before the ICJ?

Nah, those neighbor's know they don't have a legal leg to stand on, so they will just continue with their Propaganda campaigns.

Propaganda is the enemy of fact and reality.

-4 ( +4 / -8 )

JoeBigs - it's not proof of anything until Japan dismantles the whaling fleet.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

None of my Japanese friends eat whale meat and they aren't bothered by the banning either.

This has a lot of good points. The first being that money won't be wasted on the whaling program now and could be better spent elsewhere (Tohoku) and the second being that (hopefully) we won't have to read anymore SS articles.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

DisillusionedApr. 03, 2014 - 06:58PM JST JoeBigs - it's not proof of anything until Japan dismantles the whaling fleet.

Their Antarctic run is over, now let's see if the rest of the whaling world will stop their hunts. If they stop their hunts then and Japan continues, well then, you will have a point. Until that happens Japan and the rest of the whaling world will continue killing those marvelous creatures.

Pointing the finger at one nation while turning a blind eye to the rest is a bit hypocritical. If people wish to truly end this disgusting tradition they must stop it in all nations.

Norway, Iceland, St. Lucia, St., Vincent, The Grenadines and Danish Faeroe Islands.

Why not go after them all not just one?

-6 ( +3 / -9 )

Norway, Iceland, St. Lucia, St., Vincent, The Grenadines and Danish Faeroe Islands.

Why not go after them all not just one?

I think the problem is that Japanese whalers are going out of their territory to hunt whales instead of their water. You... don't think that's problem? Especially Australian sea has to be preserved carefully as one specie disappearing could disrupt the food chain system so that its tourism industry could maintain.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

My family-in-law met the ruling with abject indifference, because none of them eat whale meat, nor support the whaling.

Ah so ka.

I can see the Nationalists gnashing their teeth and wringing their hands and complaining about 'culture', but you know what? Australia has a long history of whaling too. In fact, whaling was one of the founding industries on which it was born, and unlike Japan, that industry operated in the waters not far from Antarctica. So that argument is fairly moot in my opinion.

The science angle was always a farce.

Where is Arrestpaul I wonder? :)

0 ( +4 / -4 )

At this juncture, Japan’s stance, cancelling next Antarctic whaling hunt, should be encouraged as an example of abiding by rule of law.

Should Japan continue its other commercial whaling programs, It would be up to Japan'spolicy makers and Japanese general public to make the decision after reexamining the impacts of the ruling as well as the reasons in protecting our shared ecosystems.

I think that the ruling handed down by ICJ will take effect on Japanese whaling industry given time. In addition, younger generations in Japan may show little to none of appetite for whale meat, that alone would take the steam out of commercial viability.

Anyway one may dice or slice it, Japan commercialwhaling is a sunset industry.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Goodbye and good riddance!!

Never lost any sleep over whales being eaten. I care more about humans for some reason.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

JoeBigs - There is nothing to prove Japan's southern ocean whaling is over. It is just their current program that has been banned. As I stated earlier, they were given quite a few options for changing their program to continue hunting whales in the southern ocean and I have no doubt they are looking into all these options as I type this. There are only two or three other countries that hunt whales commercially and they do so in their surrounding oceans. They too have the same problem as Japan with stockpiles of whale meat they cannot sell. However, Japan is the only country that travels to the other end of the earth to hunt whales in internationally recognised whale sanctuary. I fail to see any hypocrisy in any of my statements.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

Good for them.

Class, Japan!

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

"Save Face, Save Whales" new slogan in Japan?!? Let's hope they'll be honorable and stick to it.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Well then, this episode is pretty much over. I doubt the Japanese government is going to subsidize any more trips to the southern oceans. They have better things to spend the money on and they can save face now so I think that's the end of it.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Thank God that Sea Shepherd never gave up and stood hard and fast in Dealing with the small percentage of people that were killing off these beautiful creatures.**

0 ( +4 / -4 )

And I might add, that despite all of the shrill and ridiculous bleating we saw on these boards about the SS being 'Eco-terrorists ' - an illogical oxymoron if ever there was one when applied to conservationists, this ruling just goes to show they were well and truly barking up the right tree.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

oldman_13 - class, Japan? really? For the past 25 years Japan has been slaughtering whales under the disguise of scientific research, now there is tonnes of the stuff sitting around in freezers. It just shows that the lies will not be tolerated anymore. You may wish to clarify the meaning of “class”.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Still plenty of time to set up JARPA3 for next year! See they won't do JARPA2 again, it will now be JARPA3. Name changed. All clean!

Why not go after them all not just one?

Divide and conquer rather than bite off more than you can chew. I know, an intelligent approach is never appreciated by the opposition!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Bad news for the starving millions in Japan. /s

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Yeah I think we'll see a new program next year. Japan didn't spend 30 years in pursuit of this just to give up because a 12-4 split decision at the ICJ ruled that one of their programs wasn't up to snuff. Knowing Japan, they will make it up to snuff and solemnly proceed.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

or it can leave the IWC and resume commercial whaling just like Norway and Iceland

Norway and Iceland are members of the IWC and legally conduct commercial whaling.

And I might add, that despite all of the shrill and ridiculous bleating we saw on these boards about the SS being 'Eco-terrorists ' - an illogical oxymoron if ever there was one when applied to conservationists, this ruling just goes to show they were well and truly barking up the right tree.

Ah, no. The ruling says nothing either way about the SSCS.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

The most positive mental movement of Japan for 2014. It is very hard for humans to change their thoughts -> but the whales and all sea creatures thank you.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Ah, no. The ruling says nothing either way about the SSCS.

Oh dear.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

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