by Michael dEstries
Categories: Animals, Causes
Tags: .

ady gil, hobart, sea shepherd

The Ady Gil finally left port today from Hobart, Tasmania at around 11AM local time. The newest addition to the Sea Shepherd fleet had attempted to leave port twice before over the last few weeks, but was forced to return after some serious technical glitches. The crew will now rendezvous with the MV Steve Irwin; currently anchored near the French Research base at Dumont d’ Urville, in French territorial waters.

Though their campaign against the Japanese whaling fleet is less than two weeks old, the Sea Shepherd have already experienced some tense confrontations. This is due largely to Japan’s new tactic of sending a harpoon vessel to tail and keep track of the Irwin at all times. If their position is known, they can radio the rest of the whaling fleet to stay clear while stymieing the Irwin from getting too close.

With the addition of the Ady Gil, however, the Sea Shepherd can use its tremendous speed to shake any tail and do a little reconnaissance of its own. The Japanese have confirmed that two vessels will be used to track the SS — but we assume that second one is still with the rest of the whaling fleet. “Once we unite with our other vessel we should be in a position to seriously turn the tables on this Japanese security ship that is stalking us,” said Captain Paul Watson.

While anchored, the SS have enjoyed the support of the French Research base — with a portion of the crew going ashore and being honored with a plaque and letter of commendation. “Our sympathy goes out towards this ship’s activities in enforcing the recommendations of the International Whaling Commission,” wrote Marie France Roy, the District Chief for the base.

So, it looks like we’ve got two days or so before things pick up again. Stay tuned — and we wish the crew of the Ady Gil all the best in reaching their destination this time.

Photos: The Ady Gil departing Hobart as captured via webcam.

About Michael dEstries

Michael has been blogging since 2005 on issues such as sustainability, renewable energy, philanthropy, and healthy living. He regularly contributes to a slew of publications, as well as consulting with companies looking to make an impact using the web and social media. He lives in Ithaca, NY with his family on an apple farm.

View all posts by Michael dEstries →
  • Hideyoshi Toyotomi

    /”the Sea Shepherd have already experienced some tense confrontations. This is due largely to Japan’s new tactic of sending a harpoon vessel to tail and keep track of the Irwin at all times.”/

    Incorrect. The tense confrontations occur because Sea Shepherd is a violent criminal organisation that attacks the Japanese merchant marine, endangering human life in the pursuit of their fanatical eco-terrorist agenda.

    The confrontations would not occur if they left the Japanese vessels alone and instead concentrated on reducing the American plunder and destruction of the global environment. But, of course, harrassing white people and not using the cute symbol of whales will not bring in the same donations or TV ratings. So this isn’t going to happen.

    This sympathetic reporting of their crimes are misleading and grotesque in the extreme and should be stopped immediately.

    • A mom in Alaska

      Correct. The Japanese are violating territorial waters, and agreements. The Japanese are acting with violence. The Sea Shepherd organization is trying to stop Japanese illegal activity and defending themselves against the Japanese ships.

      Get your act together and try to help stop the horrible crimes these whalers are committing in the name of “research.”

      Cultures change, evolve over time, and we can all do with some preserving the beneficial (to all parts of the earth) aspects of our culture and casting aside aspects of our culture that are no longer appropriate to life for this planet.

      The Japanese government is subsidizing these hunts and a media campaign in Japan to encourage the waning consumption of whale meat. What a waste of money, and for what good?

  • http://neptunesalliance.org Joe Faris

    How can you justify that Sea Shepherd is a violent “criminal” organization when She Shepherd has never seriously injured or killed anyone in their entire 32 years of existence nor have they been convicted of a single crime or felony.
    Also, the tense confrontations don’t occur because Sea Shepherd is attacking the “Japanese Merchant Marine,” it occurs because the Japanese “Merchant Marine” is illegally killing whales for commercial purposes in the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary.

    • ddpalmer

      What laws are the Japanese whalers breaking? What authority does the SSCS have to enforce these laws if they exist?

  • Andre

    “The confrontations would not occur if they left the Japanese vessels alone and instead concentrated on reducing the American plunder and destruction of the global environment.”

    You are an idiot. I have crewed with the SSCS. The first time was with the makah whale campaign. I was an American engaged in non-violent direct action against other Americans who were engaging in the plunder and destruction of the enviroment. The fact that you could not do even the most basic of research to discover this leaves no doubt of your intellectual level and your ability to discuss this subject.

    Go learn something before you write here again.

  • Hideyoshi Toyotomi

    Uh oh, the eco-terrorist has resorted to personal insults. Couldn’t be because you have no factual counter argument could it? Hmm.

    Congratulations on your eco-terrorist attack on the indigenous peoples of North America. It’s always lovely to see self-righteous middle class urbanites imposing their deluded sense of moral superiority on a disadvantaged and marginalised minority. Sure, they’ve been killing whales as part of their culture for millenia. But that should be no bar to you carrying out your sentimental fantasies and fanatical agenda that makes you feel so superior!

    Never mind the millions of little brown people who don’t have enough to eat or have no education. Never mind that your country continues to rape the global environment at a rate unmatched by any other people ever. Never mind that your country’s rampant polluting will result in the death of more of your beloved whales than any research programme. Oh no. You keep clinging to your precious symbol and sentimetnal delusions. Keep telling other people what to do, by all means. Whatever makes you feel better, sweetheart!

    But pray, Sir, give yourself a nice big old fashioned uppercut. Who knows, you might just knock some sense into yourself – the greatest gift you could give the world this Christmas.

    • From MN, with hope…

      Oh good, you’re back. We were getting worried. If you havent noticed a good lot of Americans are doing all they can to cut down on the environmental rape we leave on the world. Some of those people who care are here, are the ones saving these whales, and supporting the SSCS. And if you havent noticed they arent a criminal organization. If so, why have NO charges been pressed on ANY member or former member. For TV ratings? Watson actually doesnt want his own show. Earlier this month Japan admitted to the WORLD that it isnt research: its commercial whaling. You would know that if you would do some research before flapping your gums! The eco-rape on the indiginous people of North America: they werent indiginous. They CAME up to what is currently America. And we arent alone in atacking the Native Americans. They are actually doing more damage and promoting horrid habits (like gambling)with their casinos. And do you see any of them driving around in hybrids, or electric cars? NO. WE, the immigrants of America, are doing more to help protect the environment. What about you Japanese? You have ruined Korea with your imperialistic attacks, and conquest of east Asia. That is worse than any eco-attack.

      They arent eco-terrorists. They arent criminals. They arent violating ANY laws. Its the Japanese who are breaking laws. Its a whale SANCTUARY (Sactuary: a consecrated place where sacred objects are kept; Refuge: a shelter from danger or hardship)
      Have fun doing what you’re doing, becuase you are just another pawn in Paul Watsons plan. You have mobilized all who have left comments, and many others who have read your comments. For one I have more passion about donating to them.

      Hey, second thought. Why are you here, on an environment-oriented website, leaving negative comments about the SSCS, who are trying to protect the environment from the Japanese whalers? Maybe you are a supporter who is trying to get many others to feel more passion about the SSCS. Maybe you arent a supported, but either way, I feel more passionate about supporting the SSCS.

      Thank you

    • ddpalmer

      Weren’t two SSCS members just found guilty of breaking the law in Canada?

      So if a criminal isn’t caught after robbing your house then they didn’t commit a crime? They are only a criminal if they are charged?

      The IWC sanctuary explicitly allows research whaling. The Japanese are whaling under IWC Article VIII which explicitly allows research whaling. So no violation there. And the Australian Sanctuary is just a figment of the Australian imagination, the ATS doesn’t allow them to make the 200 mile EEZ claim so it is null and void.

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  • dj

    no worries now, mates… the ady gil is sinking after being pwned by the whalers…. silly hippies….

  • Jared

    You can’t say that the Sea Shepherds use entirely non-violent methods. The Shepherds throw glass bottles at the manned decks of the whaling ships; nontoxic chemicals or not, a filled glass bottle hitting you in the face will cause serious damage. The Steve Erwin has sideswiped several Japanese whaling ships and even rammed a harpoon ship in a move of frustration, endangering the lives of everyone on board both ships. Amazingly the SE limped away with a relatively small breach in their hull, a small price to pay for such an unthinking action. Paul Watson blamed the collision on the Japanese ship, which was holding steady in formation with their factory ship. Even footage from inside the bridge of the SE shows the captain veering into the harpoon ship as hard and as fast as he could turn the wheel. All of the footage of the incident, both from the SE and the Japanese clearly show the SE suddenly swerving into the harpoon ship. Ramming a ship is hardly a non-violent action and Paul Watson lost anything left of his “moral high-ground” the instant he made the decision to ram. He should have been charged with at least 50 counts of reckless endangerment for ramming another ship in freezing Antarctic waters. The show ‘Whale Wars’, rather than furthering the cause of the anti-whaling movement, shows the sheer incompetence of the captain and crew and their willingness to use dirty tactics to stop the whalers. The Ady Gil was not sunk purposely by the Japanese, the footage clearly shows that the Ady Gil was creating a wake, meaning that they were approaching the Japanese ship under their own power. For whatever reason, the crew of the extremely nimble Ady Gil made no effort to avoid the gigantic japanese whaling ship, yet another example of the sheer incompetence of the crew. That’s like driving a car into the side of a building and claiming that the building swerved to hit you. I am anti-whaling, but the more I learn about the Shepherds, the more apalled I become.

    If the Shepherds would have taken the millions-upon-millions that they have wasted on their campains and Instead used it to lobby for the “research” loophole in the whaling laws to be fixed, rather than sailing out to harrass the Japanese ships with absolutely ineffectual tactics, they very probably would have saved thousands of whales by actually changing the laws.