Japan Is Back To Hunting Whales In The Antarctic

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Whaling ship harpoon

Image: Shutterstock/Asmus Koefoed

Japan Is Back To Hunting Whales In The Antarctic

Japan is back to hunting whales after its whaling hiatus. And they’re ready to continue without interruptions. The hunters are picking up their annual Antarctic hunt, despite the thirty-three countries that are saying, “not so fast.” These countries are going so far as to threaten legal action.

The head whaling official for Japan said, “let’s agree to disagree,” as he explained that he’s allowed to carry forth the hunting whether the rest of the world approves or not.

Well, not entirely. You see, last year the International Court Of Justice said Japan’s whaling ought to stop, and the International Whaling Committee (IWC) said Japan has proven no need for killing whales and therefore cannot be justified to continue hunting.

In response, Japan cut the number of minke whales it usually takes by two-thirds. This means Japan hunters will only kill a meager 333 giant sea mammals (notice the sarcasm). Japan’s IWC commissioner, Joji Morishita, said perhaps the world will just have to deal with the emotive issue. But Morishita was quick to remind us that he wants to keep a healthy whale population, so they won’t take all the whales.

Killer whale in the wild hunting on salmon near in Northwest Pacific, Kamchatka

Image: Shutterstock/Tatiana Ivkovich

The rest of the world isn’t sold.

Japan argued that eating whale is a part of their culture, and that most whale species aren’t endangered. They’re calling their whaling practices “scientific.”

While Australia talks about taking Japan to court, Sea Shepherd activists are taking more immediate action. The activists departed Williamson docks in Melbourne on Monday, and they plan on disrupting the Japanese whale hunters themselves. Unfortunately, this could harm Australia as they are in the process of considering Japan’s bid in their largest-ever defense acquisition—the multi-billion dollar Future Submarine project.

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Kate Wilke is the content manager at 301brands, and she's the editor of, and the lifestyle editor at When she's not paddle boarding or skiing, she's informing someone about global warming (or cats) over a local double IPA. Follow her on Instagram — @kateewilke

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