20 Vill. Envtl. L.J. 99 (2009)
Eco-Terrorism and Piracy on the High Seas: Japanese Whaling and the Rights of Private Groups to Enforce International Conservation Law in Neutral Waters

handle is hein.journals/vilenvlj20 and id is 101 raw text is: 2009]

ECO-TERRORISM AND PIRACY ON THE HIGH SEAS:
JAPANESE WHALING AND THE RIGHTS OF PRIVATE
GROUPS TO ENFORCE INTERNATIONAL CONSERVATION
LAW IN NEUTRAL WATERS
I. INTRODUCTION
[F] rom hell's heart I stab at thee [,] exclaimed Captain Ahab,
as he cast his final harpoon at Moby Dick and subsequently plunged
to the bottom of the sea with his whaling ship.1 Recently, it appears
Paul Watson, founder of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society
(Sea Shepherd), would prefer to see the Japanese whaling fleet suf-
fer a fate similar to Captain Ahab and his crew.2 Over the past
thirty years, Watson has used his privately funded navy to enforce
international conservation law by chasing, harassing, scuttling and
in some cases ramming illegal whaling and fishing vessels on the
high seas.3
As of 2008, Watson has claimed responsibility for sinking ten
illegal whaling ships.4 Watson asserts that the United Nations
1. HERMAN MELVILLE, MOBY DICK; OR, THE WHALE 468 (New York, Harper and
Brothers 1851) (1851) (quoting portion of final dialogue from Captain Ahab).
2. See Raffi Khatchadourian, Neptune's Navy, THE NEW YORKER, Nov. 5, 2007, 9,
available at http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2007/11/05/071105fa fact_
khatchadourian (discussing recent history between Sea Shepherd and Japanese
whaling fleet); see a/soJonah Fisher, Diary: Jonah and the Whale-Chasers, BBC NEWS,
Jan. 28, 2008, http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/asia-pacific/7171409.stm (detailing
events of January 2008 between Japanese whaling fleet and activist groups, Green-
peace and Sea Shepherd); see also Japanese Detain Whaling Activists, BBC NEWS, Jan.
15, 2008, http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/asia-pacific/7189580.stm (discussing Japa-
nese detainment of two Sea Shepherd protestors).
3. See Khatchadourian, supra note 2, at 9 (explaining thirty-year history of
Paul Watson and Sea Shepherd).
4. See Press Release, Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, Victory for the
Whales in Berlin (June 16, 2003) (on file with author), available at http://www.sea
shepherd.org/news/media_030616_1.html (discussing self proclaimed ship sink-
ing history of Sea Shepherd).
Since 1979, Sea Shepherd crew and agents have sent ten illegal whaling
ships to the bottom:
1979 - The pirate whaler Sierra rammed and sunk in Portugal.
1980 - The outlaw whalers Isba I and Isba II sunk in Vigo, Spain.
1980 - The pirate whalers Susan and Theresa sunk in South Africa.
1981 - The illegal whaling ships Hvalur 6 and Hvalur 7 sunk in
Iceland.
1992 - The outlaw whaler Ybraena sunk in Norway.
1994 - The pirate whaler Senet sunk in Norway.
1998 - The pirate whaler Morild sunk in Norway.
Id.

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