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Cruel dolphin slaughter in Japanese village of Taiji in spotlight again

Still image of a dolphin slaughter from a video sequence shot in 1999 by the Environmental Investigation Agency in Futo harbor near Shizuoka, Japan.

Here's the sad joke of the day: Japan slaughters thousands of dolphins, then, when pressed to defend the annual massacre, comes up with this statement:

"The Japanese Government position on this matter is based on ongoing scientific research in this area. The utilization of dolphins in this manner is sustainable and is carefully monitored."

Sound familiar? Japan uses the same argument to support its annual whale hunt in Antarctic waters. Yet few if any scientists outside Japan acknowledge any scientific gain that comes from killing whales.

The newspaper West Australian, in an article today, chronicled a recent visit to Taiji, Japan, to witness waters turning blood-red inside a cove within a national marine park.

"Between September and March, 2,300 dolphins are slaughtered in Taiji, while more than 20,000 can be killed elsewhere under the Japanese Government’s quota system," the West Australian reports.

Dolphins are herded by swift boats until they're too tired to flee, then are corraled into the shallows.

"After being contained overnight, the dolphins are stabbed, gutted and butchered for their meat at first light," the West Australian reports. "The meat sells for less than $10 a packet."

Broome, Australia, is Taiji's sister city. But the issue has strained the relationship and prompted the statement by Japan. At least one government official in Taiji has spoken out against the slaughter, and environmental groups suggest that Broome sever its sister-city ties.

If you ask me, in this era of conservation, the slaughter of dolphins for whatever reason seems like adequate grounds for divorce.

Bottlenose dolphins frolic off the coast of Southern California, where the mammals are protected.

-- Pete Thomas

Top photo: Still image of a dolphin slaughter from a video sequence shot in 1999 by the Environmental Investigation Agency in Futo harbor near Shizuoka, Japan.

Bottom photo: Bottlenose dolphins frolic off the coast of Southern California, where the mammals are protected. Credit: Allen J. Schaben /Los Angeles Times

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Comments (9)


I find the consumption of any type of animal disgusting. But my point is that you are the ones who are naive, especially if you believe that slaughter houses are humane. If the humane way to slaughter a cow is to hang it on a meat hook and slit its neck, then the Japanese are killing the dolphins the exact same way and just as humanely. I don't condone the dolphin slaughter, but it bothers me more that everyone is jumping on their high horse to criticize another country's culture.

Oh come on KT, don't be so naive. You know very well that there is a massive difference between a bloodbath of dolphin killing and the very well regulated and humane killing of cows etc for beef...or have you never visited a slaughter house? I have and DO know the difference.

What the Japanese government is doing here is right in line with all their other brutally self-serving and half baked 'scientific' theories regarding dolphins and whales, wake up! The rest of the world is trying to save these creatures...so that you can increase your harvest to sell the mercury laden meat to the Chinese? I don't think so.

This isn't an attack on the Japanese people in general so don't take it personally, take it from the angle that there are CLEARLY government 'interests' backed by 'paying' companies that need free and unethical easy access to cheap profits at the worlds expense.

And Jim, this isn't an attack on anyone who eats meat but even hunters have ethics, look into it sometime.

Japanese eat dolphin, Canadians eat horse and Koreans and Chinese eat dog. Unless you're Jesus Christ, you have not right to judge. The caged cows, pigs, and chicken in the US suffer far more cruel conditions for your enjoyment than ocean roaming dolphins. If you eat meat, use electric devices, or drive a car (pollution), you're contributing to animal suffering and death. O and flying to Japan to protest or harassing them in a boat probably KILLS MORE DOLPHINS and whales from polluting the ocean than the Japanese kill to eat. Way to go and kill them before the Japanese can eat them all!

Please stop the dolphin killing in Japan.

How is this killing any worse than the mass slaughter of cattle that happens every day in the US. Terrified cattle are coralled and forced into a killing zone where they are stunned, hung and have their throats slit whilst quite possibly still concious. Beyond the fact that dolpins are more cute that cows what exactly is the difference?

I am outrage at the Japanese government for letting this happen! I think they are EXTRTEMLY cruel, when it comes to the Slaughter of Dolphins and Whales! Dam the Japanese! When will they stop being SO DAM PRIMITIVE!

send a email of protest to the Cr Graeme Campbell
Shire President
PO box 1373 Broome 6725
Tel 9192 1366
mobile 0407 477 544
fax 9193 5854

Email shirepresident@broome.wn.com.au

Get this renegade city to drop sister city status with the dolphin killing Taiji

Scientific research? How stupid do we look? How can they say this and live with themselves? Disgusting.


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Outposts' primary contributor is Kelly Burgess.