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Taiji official says Kennedy should come and see dolphin hunt

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" But the Taiji official said hunters no longer killed dolphins in that way. "

So did they explain how they kill them now?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Are they really that out of touch with reality and Japan's role in a global community?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Wow. These guys really are living in their own world.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

She should go, take a movie, upload it to You Tube with a story about the dolphin slaughter the local govt wanted her to witness ... if dining out locally is an issue, take some food from the Embassy. Given all the mislabeling in Japan these days, I would.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I doubt Kennedy will neglect her official duty and read all sort of media publications. That is duties of some employees in Embassy.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Here is at least one petition site. There may be others more effective.

http://www.thepetitionsite.com/3/stop-the-dolphin-slaughter/

I wonder if US Ambassador Kennedy reads the Japan Today comments. May be better to write to the US Embassy directly if one wants her to visit Taiji directly as she is now directly involved having posted her personal opinion publicly. What is the protocol for diplomatic expression of personal opinions? Has any country made an official statement? Has Japan?

I only found the telephone and fax number at the following town website. http://www.town.taiji.wakayama.jp/

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Is it true that Taiji has been at war with the dolphins for years? What kind of war. Low level guerilla? Or all out total war? Seems to me that there is the typical rhetoric from both sides on this that leads to a total inability to address the issues they care about. Why not find out how much money the locals make from this activity and then find someone to stuimp up the cash to stop them. US spends enough on all sorts of other wasted causes (war anyone?) that they can afford a fews million to these peasants. Or get Bono involved......

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Even if she did go my concern is the eating the local cuisine... Yeah let's feed the only surviving child of John Kennedy dolphin meat...as far as tradition if traditions are something that was started 45 years ago well then low and behold I'm a tradition... According to Taiji's own written history first hunt was 1933 with 2 subsequent hunts to follow. The large hunts like we see now began in 1969 to obtain live specimens for the Taiji Whaling Museum. After they found out how profitable the selling of these beings were there bloodlust and greed took over.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Maybe Ambassador Kennedy visit there. If people there hide things she want to see, she can reveal that. If she can watch killing, then her complaining will be based on fact she watched. Otherwise, her complaining will sound from her guesses.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Ahh Shiori Ueno, that's basically the standard final line of defence.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

WHALES AND PORPOISES ARE NO LONGER FREE TO KILL!. Is there such thing as humane killing? Is killing for profit humane? Can you justify certain method of killing better over another? Severing the Spinal chord make the animal immobile but it may not kill it instantly and what's more inhumane than having to slowly prolong a death while paralyzed and utterly helpless.. These people have no clue dolphins are like humans in many ways and we should not let this go on anymore.... if this movement is called anti-Japanese than Japan may easily be accused of being anti-planet or harmful to earth for destroying the delicate balance of nature.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Dog forbid someone points out the impropriety of an ambassador meddling in such a way. The hubris that this reeks of can only come from a busybody such as she.

The doms don't like someone calling a spade a spade.

Ms Kennedy owes Japan a contrite apology for her inappropriate comment.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

“Water of the cove continues to run red with the blood of innocent Bottlenose dolphins who have been murdered,” the @CoveGuardians Twitter account said.

People are free to oppose this, but such mindless rhetoric just makes them sound like extremists. Slaughterhouses have blood in them too, and I'm sure the cows etc slaughtered are just as "innocent" before they are "murdered".

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Tom WebbJan. 22, 2014 - 06:50AM JST

The world should ban tuna exports to Japan.

I would agree to regulate the fishing of endangered tuna, but your opinion is too unfair since 75% of whole consumption is not by Japan.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I asked a friend who lives in Wakayama city (close to city hall) not so far from Taiji about this, and local people are not happy about Americans interfering in this. J government, Wakayama governer, J public are all supporting this practice. Please drop this case. You are hurting Japan US relationship.

If these big wigs are so proud of what they do, they would NOT have to say anything or pay any regard if the international community is outraged or not, but they get upset when the majority of nations think that 1) the constant excuses are not moving or impressing people, they're not falling for it. 2) want to justify that the brutal manner in which these dolphins are butchered and often times consumed is part of Japanese traditon that dates back....I never get a clear time stamp. 3) it's not ONLY Americans that think this slaughter is a small, insignificant thing, it's the entire international community. Japanese hate to look bad in any light, they know this reflects poorly on the nation as a whole and yet, these same politicians and J-government don't come together to meet with these people to discuss other alternatives on how other means making an income or a better advanced way harvesting the fish without killing these dolphins. What makes Taiji fishermen different from other fishermen around the world?

3 ( +3 / -0 )

I asked a friend who lives in Wakayama city (close to city hall) not so far from Taiji about this, and local people are not happy about Americans interfering in this. J government, Wakayama governer, J public are all supporting this practice. Please drop this case. You are hurting Japan US relationship.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

Tradition, what BS. It started in 1969. It also doesn't make sense that the government allows this. It not only makes Japan look bad, it is unhealthy. < http://www.theguardian.com/world/2008/oct/16/japan-food> http://www.japantimes.co.jp/life/2007/08/01/environment/taiji-officials-dolphin-meat-toxic-waste/#.Ut7zJbTTlaQ

As for Kennedy, I would say she is speaking the opinions in US. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23544757

It is also seen unfavorably in most of the world. Since articles use words like "slaughter" and "condemned".

3 ( +3 / -0 )

The Japanese will hunt the whales, dolphins, big eye tuna and other fishes out of existence. The world should ban tuna exports to Japan. The world should not buy Japanese goods and tourists should not visit Japan. The only thing Japan understand is what hurts their pocket book. So World, if you are angry with Japan, don't buy Japanese goods, cars, miso or shop in Uniglo stores.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Will people please stop saying that those of us against this slaughter are being anti Japanese or racist. I don't care where the dolphins are killed. I would be against it wherever it happened.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

A very thoughtful honest and sincere response to Caroline's "tweet". I hope she takes this limited opportunity to repair the damage she has caused. Go, look, listen, be polite. She may not like it personally but it's her job to repair the damage.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

**** The dolphin drive is NOT Japanese culture or tradition. It was not until 1969 that dolphin drives have been conducted on a large scale. The history of the dolphin drives only spans 45 years. The true reason for these drive hunts today is revenue & demand from the "Seaworlds" around the world. The metal Spike used and considered "Humane" by Japanese fisherman is anything but. The dolphins do not die immediately , some take up to 15 minutes while the dolphins writhe in agony before death comes. The fact that you do not see as much blood in the water does not make it any less painful or horrific for these self aware, highly intelligent beings.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

As ambassador to Japan Kennedy is in no particular position to lecture Japan on how they hunt. It's not an issue that's going to involve Japanese - American relations and using "if it bleeds it leads" as a rational to turn it into and issue is not the ambassador's job. I'm sure the animal rights groups will do the publicity. If Obama calls up Kennedy and says "make it an issue" than it is one. There are restrictions to the job of ambassador. Kennedy just crossed one.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

One thing I saw a couple of years back was that some of the fishermen will actually cut some of these dolphins fluke enabling it to swim and the means the dolphin will drown. Unlike us humans, dolphins have to consciously think about breathing and if they have no fluke to swim with, the animal is done. If you're going to do that, then you should put it out of its misery instead of crippling it. I think they'll show Kennedy what they want her to see and try to spin and put a good face on it. Once again, astounding.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Sidetrack abit... It's surreal to see names from a bygone era (i.e Kennedy and Ono) in the headlines again

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

tinawatanabeJAN. 22, 2014 - 12:30AM JST Dolphins and Taiji people have long history of fight with each other. Westerners adore dolphins too much, that is the source of the problem here. You should respect other countries (non-white culture) too.

So you support cultural traditions no matter what they are? Here is a short list of some of the ancient cultural traditions that still exist today - and remember as you said, "you should respect other countries (non-white) cultures";

Bullfighting (Spain) Female genital mutilation (Africa) Child selling (China and others) Child sacrifice (Uganda) Witch hunts (India) Mass dolphin torture and killing (Taiji and Faeroe Islands)
1 ( +2 / -1 )

“Whales and dolphins are an important marine resource, which should be sustainably used based on scientific data,”

Hahahaha!!! TOO MUCH! Now the Taiji '(45 year) ancient tradition of dolphins and is cultural and all foreigners should stop attacks on Japanese culture has been shifted to 'science''?? These guys never stop making me laugh, and laugh, and laugh.

2 ( +7 / -5 )

'Dolphins and Taiji people have a long history of fight with each other' This is not a fight. It's a slaughter. Drop the blades and dive in and see how far you get catching these magnificent creatures by hand.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

"The U.S. ambassador to Japan should visit Taiji to see the “humane” killing methods used in the dolphin hunt, a local fisheries official said Tuesday, days after Caroline Kennedy tweeted her disapproval of the slaughter."

I wonder if they'll let her record it. My guess is they would never allow her to attend the 'even't anyway and are only posturing. Fortunately, this is going to give it more international exposure to the point where: “Foreigners. Leave this page as soon as you are done with your tirades.” will be seen for the defense of the dolphin hunt for what it is. Nice work, Ueno.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

Dolphins and Taiji people have long history of fight with each other. Westerners adore dolphins too much, that is the source of the problem here. You should respect other countries (non-white culture) too.

-7 ( +3 / -10 )

It's not only the American ambassador, apparently the British ambassador Tim Hitchens has also spoken out in condemnation of the killing.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-25823024

0 ( +2 / -2 )

It's clear what the Taijin fishermen have actually done is make the killing LOOK less inhumane, when in actual fact what they have done is make it even more inhuman by killing them more slowly from massive internal bleeding.

So the intervention of environmentalists has inadvertently led to these animals suffering more. How ironic!

X

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

Thanks Cleo - somebody who actually makes the effort to do some research and use a little intelligence before making a comment. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23544757

It's clear what the Taijin fishermen have actually done is make the killing LOOK less inhumane, when in actual fact what they have done is make it even more inhuman by killing them more slowly from massive internal bleeding.

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I'm with Jean ValJean and UR22... .

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

The BBC footage shows divers pushing the poor dolphins towards the boats. One close-up shows a dolphin thrashing about with blood coming from it's mouth. That's really humane.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

UR22335 at Jan. 21, 2014 - 11:18PM JST

Excellent, well-balanced, rational post!

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

“We have switched to a more humane way of butchering them,” he said. “We cut the spinal cord so that they don’t bleed. We don’t butcher them like before.

In other words, admitting that what they were doing up until the Cove, Ric O'Barry and Sea Shepherd showed them up for the inhumane butchers they are, was inhumane, brutal and unnecessary. And I see he makes no mention of the cruelty involved in leaving the animals trapped without food for three days before the killing begins.

As for cutting the spinal cord being 'more humane', I have serious doubts - The method involves the repeated insertion of a metal rod followed by the plugging of the wound to prevent blood loss into the water. .... Our veterinary and behavioral analysis of video documentation of this method indicates that it does not immediately lead to death and that the time to death data provided in the description of the method, based on termination of breathing and movement, is not supported by the available video data. The method employed causes damage to the vertebral blood vessels and the vascular rete from insertion of the rod that will lead to significant hemorrhage, but this alone would not produce a rapid death in a large mammal of this type. The method induces paraplegia (paralysis of the body) and death through trauma and gradual blood loss. This killing method does not conform to the recognized requirement for "immediate insensibility" and would not be tolerated or permitted in any regulated slaughterhouse process in the developed world.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23544757

So, it isn't that the dolphins don't bleed, just that they don't bleed into the water. The method causes significant haemorrhage, but not a quick death. Less visible blood and less thrashing since the animals are paralysed might make for video footage that is a bit easier to watch, but I don't see how that makes it any less painful or terrifying for the animal.

They won't go on record for fear of the loons targeting their houses and families, when what they are doing - no matter your view - is not illegal.

On the matter of threats -

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/09/01/ric-obarry-the-cove-star-_n_701672.html Ric O'Barry unable to travel to Taiji or to visit the Fisheries Ministry due to threats

http://www.csmonitor.com/World/Asia-South-Central/2010/0702/The-Cove-hits-big-screen-in-Japan-defying-threats/(page)/2 A campaign of threatening phone calls causes cinemas in Japan to cancel planned screenings of The Cove

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

" Japan is a pathetic country and they don't realize they are living in a global village."

Says the collectivist. Which pathetically self-righteous country are you from? You can condem an entire country? Global village, my left foot!

0 ( +6 / -6 )

http://blog.seattlepi.com/candacewhiting/2014/01/20/taiji-dolphin-drives-started-in-1969-and-are-not-a-part-of-japanese-tradition/

Andreas - well spotted. The "venerable culture" gambit is specious nonsense, swallowed whole by people who have been trained not to question authority.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Is it the way they kill dolphins that matter? or is it the fact that they are killing dolphins that matter? or maybe both?

I agree that unnecessarily cruel way of killing dolphins should be avoided but it is hard for me to understand what is so special about dolphins. Maybe because dolphins are intelligent, beautiful, cute and does not attack human. Killing dolphins unnecessarily is human centered act but I also feel it is human centered discrimination that some people try to treat whales and dolphins differently from other animals. But if there is chance that these special concerns for dolphins are eventually going to spread to all the other animals in a proper way, I think there is meaning to love dolphins more.

Native Indians and Inuits and people in stone age probably respected nature more than many people living today. And I think they knew how to live with nature more than industrialized people. And many of them were hunting dolphins or whales for long time and probably received them as grace from nature.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

They will never show to her the reality. The Dolphin kill/hunt is a brutal and cruel business. Has nothing to do with tradition, they started this killing spree in 1969. Japan is a pathetic country and they don't realize they are living in a global village. The "invitation" to Kennedy just shows that they just don't get it. It's even an insult to her and to humanity. "Please come Kennedy-san and watch how nicely we murder the Dolphins" They just don't get it. Kennedy should show them the middle finger or bring some Sea Sepherd activists with her. Like I said, pathetic country.

1 ( +7 / -6 )

Can we have a better U.S ambassador? She is single handedly deteoriating the relationship between the U.S and Japan. What an amateur.Ruth was 1000 times better than this.

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

They won't go on record for fear of the loons targeting their houses and families

Wasn't that the way the right-wing trucks targeted the homes of cinema owners naive enough to try to show the Oscar-winning documentary "The Cove" in Japan? Yes it was.

You can't defend something on the grounds of its being cultural and then do everything you possibly can to hide it from your own people. The media assault on The Cove was worthy of Pyongyang. "Don't look at this, it is anti-Japanese propaganda".

I'm all for Kennedy going to have a look. Let's all have a look. Don't hide it under tarpaulins - show off this majestic tradition to the world. Then maybe, just maybe, enough Japanese people will see this abomination with their own eyes and demand it stop. Teacher X has it right. Call something "cultural" and people will cling to it like a toddler's comfort blanket. It serves no purpose, it's threadbare and disgusting, but try and take it away and there will be tantrums.

But let Japanese people see this atrocity, and change will come.

And who, may I ask, is Shiori Ueno? She wants mooning.

3 ( +9 / -6 )

"She is entitled to an opinion like anyone else. "

Not if it will affect Japan-US relations and have any negative effect on more important differences.

I'm personally against it myself.

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

Gosh almighty, who cares already.

If it ain't the Yasukuni/Chinese complaining, it's about dolphin hunting.

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

As this has reached as far up as the Japanese prime minister I think the environmentalists should be more than happy with this propaganda campaign, very successful! Should ensure that the donations continue to roll in and they will get paid and have new equipment for next years propaganda campaign. Good show lads!

.............

Meanwhile they will have affected no change in the ways of the Japanese people, and probably made them more resolute to continue their traditions. It's funny that all the name calling by people on these posts will have the opposite effect. While clear headed discussion will make progress, name calling will drive the cause backwards. But isn't that the goal of organisations like Sea Shepherd for if the problem disappeared so would they.

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

PeacetrainJAN. 21, 2014 - 10:07PM JST This was a bad move on her part. It's not her place. She must have pretty poor advisers.

It's not her place because...? She has poor advisers because..? Worse topic development than many of my students.

She is entitled to an opinion like anyone else. She represents American public's thinking on the Taiji dolphin killing - that it is unacceptable by the international community and time to stop it.

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

This was a bad move on her part. It's not her place. She must have pretty poor advisers.

-4 ( +5 / -9 )

And visit the Whale Museum too (north side of town). I had fun, and Taiji itself is picturesque.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

@Hawkeye

Why doesn't someone enlist the help of super rich people like bill gates or richard branson to buy all the porpoises before they are killed and set them free each and every year. This is akin to paying ransom for kidnapping but then the porpoises get to live and then start a school in Taiji with another industry focus to educate the locals so they can get a different job and quit this horrific tradition.

Exactly the kind of thinking 'outside the box' an issues like this requires. Oh if I were only one of those elite.

(sigh, my mother always said igloo buying would get me nowhere)

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Why doesn't someone enlist the help of super rich people like bill gates or richard branson to buy all the porpoises before they are killed and set them free each and every year. This is akin to paying ransom for kidnapping but then the porpoises get to live and then start a school in Taiji with another industry focus to educate the locals so they can get a different job and quit this horrific tradition.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Good to see that this foul method of butchering our fellow mammals isn't regarded as 'traditional' and can be changed. I suppose that offers a glimmer of hope for further progress. Kennedy should accept this invitation. Any further comments she makes will be better informed and carry more weight.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

Why does Kennedy need to go and see it? The slaughter can be seen in all it's glory in YouTube. You can also see how 'humanely' the dolphins are killed with the barbarians continually stabbing the dolphins with spears from their boats.

http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=-X2cdXWf9Hw

0 ( +9 / -9 )

JeffLee

"They won't go on record for fear of the loons targeting their houses and families,"

Really? Is that what they do? Can you cite specific cases?

As if you really cared one way or another. But if you pay the transportation, I'll go and interview them.

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

Japan is going to be faced with more of this kind of international criticism since it does not hold the same values for animal rights as other developed nations.

-7 ( +7 / -14 )

“Whales and dolphins are an important marine resource, which should be sustainably used based on scientific data,” top government spokesman Yoshihide Suga said.

Absolute rubbish. They should be left alone.

1 ( +10 / -9 )

Shiori Ueno wrote: “Foreigners. Leave this page as soon as you are done with your tirades.”

Therein lies the answers to all foreign objections! If japan holds onto these barbaric traditions for the sake of not evolving into a developed nation, is not them that are stating tirades?

1 ( +8 / -7 )

"They won't go on record for fear of the loons targeting their houses and families,"

Really? Is that what they do? Can you cite specific cases?

-3 ( +5 / -8 )

@Fernando Uchiyama: Then let the Taiji fishermen remove their tarpaulins and show the truth to the world. If they are not ashamed of or embarassed about their culture, that`s what they should do

5 ( +13 / -8 )

You people of Japan have so many beautiful traditions. It makes me cry that this senseless bloody hunting should be one of them. Please help to stop this cruel killing. Please take the first step and make our world a better place. It is in your hands, dear people of Japan. Please make a change. Thank you.

-3 ( +5 / -8 )

so why would they want to show her what they can`t already show the world?

If she accepts the invitation, which I think she should, I think it is certainly possible what she is shown will be different from what has been traditionally done. However, once this becomes record of the way it is done, perhaps it will be more humane and perhaps eventually the 'tradition' will disappear all together.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

Of course it makes difference if there is blood or not. Blood is very connected to emotions. When someone sees the sea in red color, the sensations automatically binds to human blood. A person who lost a related person by being shot by a gun or stabbed by a knife will immediately associate the blood and may remember this fact.

Blood for sure makes the image innapropriate for children and it may be a problem to sensitive people.

My point of view is that the japanese does not have to be critized because of dolphin hunting.

But the japanese need to be critized for not explaining it well and also they have to do some effort to make it appear less cruel. The way we do things are very important. It cause sensations and influence others. For example, the same phrase spoken calmly and angrily do sounds different only because you change the tone of your voice, and can completely change the meaning of your message.

Japan is a very introspective country. I know it is difficult to explain itself being introspective, but as being a modern country and classified as first world, its citizens and politicians must do some effort to try to communicate well and to do better propaganda of its acts. I lived in Japan, I know japanese have good hearts, but what is worth a good heart if this is a hidden heart and nobody can see it?

-9 ( +6 / -15 )

“We have switched to a more humane way of butchering them"

Good grief.

2 ( +10 / -8 )

Taiji officials go to great lengths to conceal the killing of the dolphins under tarpaulins, so why would they want to show her what they can`t already show the world?

4 ( +15 / -11 )

The Taiji officials say they've changed their methods, and are genuinely TRYING. On their side are the economic realities.

I say that Kennedy should at least go and visit, open a dialogue and discuss alternative ways of making money in exchange for abandoning the tradition. Perhaps contracts with U.S. or European zoos, funding from ocean preservation funds, etc. Maybe in a few years they'll be "slaughtering" blow-up dolphins in memory of the tradition and leaving the real ones alone if it a compromise can be reached.

It seems like there is an opportunity here for dialogue and an eventual resolution. Don't let it slip by. Don't let the dialogue be dominated by small-minded people who just yell their point of view and ignore everyone else.

16 ( +20 / -5 )

Shows how strong they think their case is when they won't even go on record.

Oh come on, don't be so naive. They won't go on record for fear of the loons targeting their houses and families, when what they are doing - no matter your view - is not illegal. Kennedy should go and see first hand. Doesn't mean she should change her opinion, but she should at least go.

9 ( +14 / -6 )

What is this focus on how much blood there is? The more graphic the worse it is? Blood or no blood, these wild animals are being slaughtered and no matter what Japanese officials say about it being part of Japanese culture, Japan is also part of the international community in this globalized world and the world is saying to there fellow members in Japan. Enough already!

6 ( +15 / -10 )

"The official, who did not wish to be named, said Kennedy should also see for herself how the hunt supports the local economy."

Shows how strong they think their case is when they won't even go on record.

8 ( +16 / -8 )

Taiji's local govt is so disconnected from reality.

0 ( +17 / -18 )

Japan is not innocent…not when its fishing fleets still illegally hunt whales in the Antarctic under the guise of research, Ariel Guico commented.

without legal rationale.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

So it comes down to how much they bleed? I don't think that makes a difference.

7 ( +11 / -4 )

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