Monday, December 24, 2007

And folks thought Japan was backing down

over hunting endangered whales. Ha! Wrong.

JAPAN'S cave-in on its plan to kill 50 humpback whales in the Southern Ocean this summer was not a breakthrough because whalers would continue to hunt the even more endangered fin whale, protesters said yesterday.

Japanese whale hunters will go ahead and kill 50 fin whales, even though they are officially endangered species and a moratorium on hunting them is imposed by the International Whaling Commission. Read more.

Of all the things in the world to get into major disputes about, Japan chooses whale hunting even though few actually eat the meat here. Very few. The government has to push it to get people to eat what little they do. This fight is purely about nationalism. One can see why Japan has the stature and maturity to be on the UN Security Council.

Unlike the production of new technology to fight global warming, there is little money to be made by Japan's industries by not not killing endangered whales. Could that be why Japan's mythically unique love of, and deep relationship with, nature is a little less apparent here?

Oh wait. I keep forgetting, some people hunt kangaroos in Australia, so it's the same as Japan hunting endangered whales. My apologies.

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