The Gillard government’s failure to do anything at all about this summer’s illegal Japanese whaling in Australia’s Antarctic waters leaves the Prime Minister’s admonition of three whaling activists looking insipid.
It’s a good thing that the Southern Ocean patrol ship ‘Ocean Protector’ is going to pick these three brave Australians off the Shonan Maru II, but the ship should then be allowed to live up to its name and move on to the Antarctic whaling arena.
The Prime Minister’s waggling finger should be directed at the law-breakers in Tokyo, rather than the three men from Bunbury.
The Greens will bring a bill into parliament requiring a patrol vessel to be sent to monitor any whaling activity in Australian waters or whale sanctuaries.
Australian Greens Leader Senator Bob Brown has written to opposition leader Tony Abbott to seek his support for this bill which directly reflects Opposition and Greens policy. It would ensure a naval or other patrol vessel was patrolling in the internationally recognised Antarctic whaling sanctuary or any such intrusion as the Shonan Maru II entering Australia’s own coastal whale sanctuary at present.
The Greens are also asking the Opposition to revert to its original support for Senator Rachel Siewert’s bill prohibiting Australian businesses from supporting the Japanese whalers as they did when providing spy flights over Sea Shepherd’s boat several years ago.