The Sea Shepherd Conservation Society introduced a fourth ship last Tuesday to their fleet of anti-whaling vessels. The purchase of the $2m boat was made possible by Los Angeles-based philanthropist and co-creator of TV’s “The Simpsons,” Sam Simon. In a brilliant play of propaganda, the retired research vessel was bought from the Japanese without their knowledge of Sea Shepherd’s involvement. Captain of the Sam Simon, Locky Maclean, stated: “After months of secrecy, it is such a great feeling to finally be able to fly the Sea Shepherd flag from the main mast, and yes, Sea Shepherd now owns a real Japanese research ship!” The 56 meter ship will be leaving for Antarctic waters this month as it sets to shut down the Japanese whaling fleet as they head for the Southern Ocean. ”The goal is to find the factory ship, the Nisshin Maru, and to pin the bow of this ship on the stern of that factory ship throughout the duration of the campaign, and send them home without any whales killed,” MacLean said.
Prior to its purchase, the “Seifu Maru” operated out of the whaling town of Shimonoseki, Japan, alongside the very ships Sea Shepherd will confront this season. “Thanks to the generosity of Sam Simon, co-creator of TV’s “The Simpsons,” our fleet is stronger than ever with the addition of this new vessel,” said Captain Paul Watson in a statement. “We have four ships, one helicopter, drones and more than 120 volunteer crew from around the world ready to defend majestic whales from the illegal operations of the Japanese Whaling Fleet.”
In their ninth season in Antarctica, Sea Shepherd embarks upon its biggest campaign yet to defend at-risk whales. Operation Zero Tolerance aims to send the Japanese Fleet home with zero whales killed or harpooned. “Zero tolerance. Zero cruelty. Zero kills”. Their past campaigns so far have saved the lives of more than 3,600 whales and exposed illegal Japanese whaling to the world. The Japanese whaling industry faces hundreds of millions of debt and Sea Shepherd strongly believes the industry cannot continue to sustain such huge financial losses. With the addition of the SSS San Simon to aptly nicknamed “Whale’s Navy”, it is quite possible that no whales will be killed this season and Japanese whaling will become a thing of the past.
Sea Shepherd is currently looking for donations and supplies to support their Zero Tolerance Campaign.