Canada’s anti-whaling pirate

Handout/Getty Images The battle over whaling rights is getting heated. That is to say, as heated as anything can be in the frigid waters surrounding Antarctica. Japan has been trying for years to get the International Whaling Commission (IWC) to allow commercialized whaling, enlisting unlikely allies, like landlocked Mongolia, in its cause. Countries that oppose ...

604051_whaling_pirate_05.jpg
604051_whaling_pirate_05.jpg

Handout/Getty Images

The battle over whaling rights is getting heated. That is to say, as heated as anything can be in the frigid waters surrounding Antarctica. Japan has been trying for years to get the International Whaling Commission (IWC) to allow commercialized whaling, enlisting unlikely allies, like landlocked Mongolia, in its cause. Countries that oppose lifting the limits are becoming increasingly annoyed, and in fact most are boycotting a commission meeting going on this week in Japan.

But it's on the high seas that the confrontation is getting really tense—spawning the creation of what may be the world's first whale pirate. Over the past few days, a radical Canadian environmentalist has been harassing Japanese scientific whaling vessels in the Antarctic Ocean. Tactics have included lobbing acid onto the whaler's deck, fouling the ships' ropes, and provoking a collision. The renegade's ships have been stripped of their national registrations, and are now navis non grata in the world's ports. Greenpeace, meanwhile, has been forced into the unaccustomed role of playing the moderate. The environmental organization condemned the attack, and even sent a ship to help one of the whalers after it sent out a distress signal.

Handout/Getty Images

The battle over whaling rights is getting heated. That is to say, as heated as anything can be in the frigid waters surrounding Antarctica. Japan has been trying for years to get the International Whaling Commission (IWC) to allow commercialized whaling, enlisting unlikely allies, like landlocked Mongolia, in its cause. Countries that oppose lifting the limits are becoming increasingly annoyed, and in fact most are boycotting a commission meeting going on this week in Japan.

But it’s on the high seas that the confrontation is getting really tense—spawning the creation of what may be the world’s first whale pirate. Over the past few days, a radical Canadian environmentalist has been harassing Japanese scientific whaling vessels in the Antarctic Ocean. Tactics have included lobbing acid onto the whaler’s deck, fouling the ships’ ropes, and provoking a collision. The renegade’s ships have been stripped of their national registrations, and are now navis non grata in the world’s ports. Greenpeace, meanwhile, has been forced into the unaccustomed role of playing the moderate. The environmental organization condemned the attack, and even sent a ship to help one of the whalers after it sent out a distress signal.

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