Dolphins Die Again in Taiji
On the morning of October 23, thirteen boats and twenty-six fishermen departed Taiji to hunt for dolphins. Rough weather forced the boats to return. Because the rough weather was also a hindrance on the 24th and the 25th, the dolphins were spared the cruelty of the fishermen until October 26.
On the morning of the 26th of October, the same 13 boats departed and returned two hours later driving approximately 50 bottlenose dolphins, including numerous mothers with new born calves, into the bay. The fishermen set up their nets across a small lagoon where the defenseless dolphins were driven. The dolphins desperately tried to escape, struggling unsuccessfully for the rest of the day until the dolphin killers returned.
Guards were stationed to keep potential dolphin protectors from approaching or photographing the animals. All around the lagoon signs were posted in English saying "Keep Out." and "No Photography."
On the morning of the 27th, fishermen arrived along with about 20 dolphin trainers from the Taiji Whale museum, the World Dolphin Resort and Dolphin Base. They proudly sported the logos of these establishments on their wetsuits. Their job was to select a few dolphins for public display and "swim with" programs and then to assist the fishermen in massacring the unselected animals.
The slaughter began out of sight of the public and cameras. The knives, spears and hooks began their systematic slashing, stabbing and poking, as the lagoon filled with the blood of the dolphins. All the while these defenseless animals strived valiantly to live, with their intestines hanging out, their flesh gaping and blood spewing from their blow-holes.
The Taiji terror had struck again. The perversely cruel fishermen of Taiji, with the full support of their government, have begun their miserable bloody work once more.
On the morning of October 28, the fishermen returned with 50 false killer whales and drove them into the same lagoon, which was still stained with the innocent blood of the dolphins slaughtered only the day before.
The Sea Shepherd Conservation Society is organizing an International Day of Protest, scheduled for November 19th, against the Japanese Dolphin slaughter.
In conjunction with the International Day of Protest, Sea Shepherd will also be releasing a PSA, narrated by actress Susan Sarandon, to help focus attention on the dolphin massacres.
The Sea Shepherd Conservation Society has a crew working on strategies to document the killing as well.
"This is a horrific tragedy," said Captain Paul Watson. "We must never surrender our efforts to oppose this slaughter. Our opposition is powerful and the fishermen are violent to anyone who attempts to expose their bloody perversion to the world. We cannot allow the Japanese to censor this killing. We need to bring more cameras to Taiji and that is why the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society is offering a $10,000 prize to the person or persons who capture the most graphic images of this Japanese obscenity."