Monday, November 2, 2009
Booby Traps at Taiji
By Hardy Jones
A very brave young Canadian woman has reported from Taiji that the fishermen have booby trapped the hill from which we video the dolphin slaughters.
Leslie-Ann Gervais is now home in a small town in Ontario. It is very fortunate that she escaped serious injury. Here is what she wrote in an email to me:
“... the booby traps were set up with "razor wire" as the ends that grabbed onto my leg, ankle and shoe were very sharp, still have a few marks...and that was from a very cautious step. They had strung more at a head-high level the next day as well...which could poke out an eye...or worse slice into someone's throat.
“The Dawn of the killing...(which happened while it was still dark)....i counted 16 men in a boat leaving the scene (last time 9-10 men)....maybe they had herded-in more later that day which is why there were more men this time and I may have even missed out on counting others too. And this time, they did the killings in the dark and they took such pains with booby traps and trying to block the look out . . .”
“When i went back again today i could not get through that one area...in fact i got caught up in barb wire even though i was looking for it! It latched on to my pants, ankle and shoe...with just one cautious step. Therefore, since yesterday they have entwined EVEN more barb wire. It is tied around trees and stretches and entwines itself camouflaged within the trees and among bushes and leaves. Yesterday, found one which was ankle high, but tied between two trees... NOW, just now saw one head high...which could easily slice through a neck or take out an eye. Makes it very dangerous for anyone who is filming or taking photos and not paying attention to their surroundings.”
Went to the cove this morning...wanted to be present for this family of Pilot Whales. I arrived just as the dawn was breaking and the slaughter was ending. "Personal Space" was in my shadow, flickering his lighter, moping around me - he was sulky, perhaps because i did not have a camera in his face.
This morning they had three nets, two on the outside and one dividing inside the cove. Perhaps because last time they had a problem with the last brave Samurai Pilot Whale who fought so hard. This family of Pilot Whales seemed to slip away quickly....as there were more men this time ...counted 16 men out there on three boats.... After the slaughter they checked the nets as though they were looking for one that had been killed, but disappeared....and made me think of the baby:(. Just so awful. At the end, a speed boat of 11 men came towards shore - all looking my way...even though i may have been scared inside....showed no fear...and gave them my best Native warrior look, 9 men disembarked and left the scene.”
What an extraordinary young woman, operating alone in Taiji!
Sadly it is clear hunting dolphins at Taiji has not ended. It is now clear to me that the only way to end it is to prove the high toxic levels in marine mammals, in the people who eat them and then connect high toxic levels to disease.