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U.S. WHALE HUNT HARPOONS WASHINGTON TOURISM

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  • Hayduke's EF! MAN
    August 3, 1999 U.S. WHALE HUNT HARPOONS WASHINGTON TOURISM - summer resorts empty as tribe prepares to kill more whales Last spring s whale hunt by the Makah
    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 3, 1999
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      August 3, 1999

      U.S. WHALE HUNT HARPOONS WASHINGTON TOURISM
      - summer resorts empty as tribe prepares to kill more whales

      Last spring's whale hunt by the Makah Indian tribe of Neah Bay, Washington,
      has triggered a long, disastrous summer for local tourism-dependent towns
      and businesses in Washington state. Occupied fishing boat slips at the
      Makah marina are down from a seasonal norm of 200 to about 75, and area
      resorts, at the height of the season, are surprisingly vacant. Local
      chambers of commerce, while acknowledging that the Makah's nationally
      televised shooting of a young Gray whale on May 17 has impacted tourism,
      have attempted to put the blame on poor weather. However, fishing and whale
      watching is booming just across the Canadian border in British Columbia.
      (Victoria, B.C., has passed a resolution condemning the Makah hunt.)

      The National Marine Fisheries Service is investigating the possibility that
      the Gray whale the Makah shot on May 17 was a "resident" whale. The Makah
      have announced they will hunt again when the whales start to migrate south
      in October, and may take a whale before their Makah Days celebration August
      28. "They were out practicing on the water last week," said Captain Paul
      Watson, president of Sea Shepherd. "They're getting ready to go out again,
      and they're talking about taking as many as five whales."

      Sea Shepherd notes that the tribe is now proposing to go hunting just after
      a spring Gray whale migration that had the highest mortality rate ever
      recorded. Scientists are unsure as to the cause. Opinion polls and
      Washington newspapers have reported overwhelming public opposition to the
      Makah hunt.

      "One more whale hunt will be devastating for tourism in northwest
      Washington state," said SSCS International Director Lisa Distefano. "This
      is a region dependent on sport fishing, whale watching and tourism, and
      those industries start suffering major damage from one more year of this
      slaughter."

      "We strongly suggest that the business leaders of the affected communities
      get in touch with their state representatives and tell them they're not
      going to take 'it's out of our jurisdiction' as an excuse any more. The
      state needs to seek relief from the tragic policies and actions of the
      federal government that are perpetuating this blood sacrifice in U.S.
      waters."

      Although there is a whale-hunting clause in the Makah's 1855 treaty with
      the United States, Sea Shepherd and many other environmental organizations
      have pointed out that the U.S.-sanctioned hunt can in fact only be
      authorized by the International Whaling Commission. The IWC has refused to
      recognize any subsistence need on the part of the Makah to hunt whales. The
      U.S. government, in attempting to honor its obligation to the Makah treaty,
      is thus violating its obligation to uphold the Convention of the IWC, to
      which it is signatory.

      The Sea Shepherd Conservation Society successfully deployed its ships and
      small craft to curtail hunting efforts in Neah Bay for several months in
      1998, and has proposed Congressional legislation to return a portion of
      former Makah lands to the tribe in exchange for an amendment of the whaling
      clause in the treaty that ceded the land to the United States in 1855. The
      Sea Shepherd proposal is available on the World Wide Web at
      http://www.seashepherd.org/wh/us/mkswap.html

      =====================================
      Sea Shepherd Conservation Society
      P.O. Box 628
      Venice, CA. 90294
      USA
      e-mail: seashepherd@...
      Web Site: http://www.seashepherd.org
      Tel: 310-301-SEAL(7325)
      Canada: 604-688-7325
      Fax: 310-574-3161
      =====================================

      Andy Caffrey, founder
      Andy's Earth First! Media Network [aka EF! Media Center]

      PLEASE NOTE theses changes:

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