Before you start shouting, I do not approve of whaling. If you think whales are that delicious, just start a whale farm. I am, however, partial to the balls-out way in which the Japanese go about their whaling. Not "Hey world, we love whales, they are yum" but "Hey world, we love whales, they are fascinating!" Pause. "Hey everyone, as you know we have caught this whale for scientific research purposes, and not to eat! However, now that we have completed our research, there is all this left-over whale. You want that we should waste all this delicious left-over whale? No...I didn't think so." Nom nom nom nom.
Anyway, a small boat of New Zealand-based protesters was mucking about near where some scientific whaling was going down, and yesterday that small boat was rammed by the rather larger Japanese security ship (which is there to stop people interfering with the science).
The Japanese say that the NZ boat "launched projectiles at the factory ship Nisshin Maru and tried to tangle its propellers with rope," and also "came abnormally close to the Shonan Maru No 2 [the security boat which did the enforcing] and suddenly slowed down while crossing in front of it." (Full article here.)
The NZ boat is desperately trying to look innocent and saying that they were "idling" and "dead in the water," which sounds a bit like the unsuccessful "I was just sitting there, and then she pinched me!" defense of my childhood. (It never worked. It was not true.)
Whole thing seems kind of like going to a nightclub and causing trouble, then being surprised that the bouncer threw you out ("Nah bro I wasn't doing nothing, eh!"). Possibly in this case the bouncer (the Shonan Maru No 2 (which sounds like something you might order at a takeaway (please don't ram me))) should have exercised a little less force, but come on, protest boat, what did you think was going to happen?
If you go and muck about with someone else's multi-million dollar business operation - which, apparently, you are totally allowed to do if there are principles involved - then you should be expecting repercussions and, when you get them, running to the media and saying "This is attempted murder!" makes you kind of look like a dick, especially when you then declare that you're not going to back down now because you have a real "whale war" on your hands.
This is going to end with a protester doing something stupid and getting shot and then everyone is going to shout at the Japanese, who were just kind of hungry (for scientific knowledge) - guess who is going to be next week's Weiner of the Week.
(ps it's whales, if they weren't so delicious there would be no "whale war.")
(pps has anyone ever actually eaten whale? Is it yum?)