==== A message from the 'makahwhaling' discussion list =====
ACTION ALERT ITEM!!!
We are asking EVERYONE to mount a large-scale telephone campaign to the U.S.
Coast Guard. These calls could really affect the outcome of this hunt!!!!!
Callers need to express their regarding about the Makah whale hunt and the
U.S. Coast Guard's policy of assisting the Makah in their illegal hunt.
Remember, folks- the U.S. Coast Guard is funded by you, the taxpayers. THEY
ARE SUPPOSED TO WORK FOR YOU! Please remind them who they work for!
Most importantly, DEMAND that the U.S. Coast Guard IMMEDIATELY
RELEASE the SEDNA and Sea Shepherd boats that were confiscated
yesterday!!!!! You should also call the U.S. attorney's office (below) and
demand they start working for the people who pay their salaries (that's you
and me). Make your feelings known!
Please forward this information to as many concerned citizens
and organizations as you can. We need to make it very clear to the U.S.
government that they are NOT representing the American people well in this
SEDNA has passed on the relevant phone numbers:
U.S. Coast Guard at Neah Bay
Phone: (360) 645-2236
Fax: (360) 645-2237
U.S. Coast Guard
Thirteenth District Commander, Seattle, WA
Phone: (206) 220-7110
Fax: (206) 220-7245
Susan Roe, Assistant United States Attorney
Phone: (206) 553-7970
Fax: (206) 553-2054
MAKAH WHALERS REST
ASSOCIATED PRESS AND KIRO 7 EYEWITNESS NEWS
(NEAH BAY, Wash.) In the span of six days, a ragtag group of anti-whaling
activists standing guard at the northwestern tip of the country watched as
the U.S. Coast Guard seized four of their vessels, including a large jet
boat prized for its speed.
Protest leaders acknowledged a temporary setback Sunday, but vowed to remain
on station indefinitely while the Makah Indian Tribe attempts to revive its
ancient whaling culture by spearing a gray whale with a harpoon flung from a
handmade cedar canoe.
The Makah whalers rested Sunday, a day after spending 101/2 hours paddling
around the Pacific on their second hunt in a week. They threw their harpoon
twice Saturday, but the whales escaped apparently unharmed.
"Boats are replaceable," Jonathan Paul, head of the Oregon-based Sea Defense
Alliance, said in a cell phone interview from the 95-foot Sirenian, the
flagship of the protest fleet. "People are calling in and offering their
boats. "It's not stopping us."
The Coast Guard cited the operators of four protest vessels with grossly
negligent behavior as they darted around the canoe and its tribal support
boats in an effort to disrupt the hunt. Three vessels -- the 42-foot
Bulletproof, a Jet Ski and an inflatable craft -- were seized and remain in
Coast Guard custody indefinitely. A fourth vessel was seized last Monday.
"I think the tradeoff -- boats for a whale -- is pretty fair," said Paul
Watson, skipper of the Sirenian and head of the Sea Shepherd Conservation
Society. "I'm pretty sure they would have taken a whale if it wasn't for
those small boats."
Protesters praised the quick response by Cheryl Rorabeck-Siler, a high
school science teacher from Newhalem, Ore., who was first on the scene
Saturday in her Jet Ski. She harassed the whaling crew while the protest
fleet sped to the area from Seiku, 18 miles away.
"It was a little scary," Rorabeck-Siler said. "(The Makah) made it clear
they didn't want me there. They had me boxed in at one time and tried to
The seizures apparently left the activists with the Sirenian, a
fierce-looking former Coast Guard cutter painted black, and a handful of
small power boats.
Watson declined to discuss how many boats are left, how many new boats will
join the fleet or when they will arrive, citing "security" issues. He
expects the Coast Guard to return the four seized vesse Flattery on their
way from Mexico to Alaska.
In addition to negligent operations, operators of the three craft seized
Saturday also were cited for violating the Marine Mammal Protection Act by
coming too close to whales and, in one case, possibly striking a whale.
Watson complained that it's the Makah, who plan to spear a whale and then
shoot it with a .50-caliber rifle, who are harassing the whales.
When grays were taken off the Endangered Species List in 1994, the tribe
moved to resume whale hunts guaranteed under their 1855 treaty. The U.S.
government supported their bid before the International Whaling Commission.
The tribe was allocated 20 whales through 2004. The Makah hunt-management
plan bars sale of edible whale parts.
It was unclear Sunday when the hunt will resume. Many of the Makah spent the
day at a tribal basketball tournament at the local high school gymnasium.
FROM THE 'GLOBE AND MAIL' (CANADA)
Vancouver -- Re Makah Whalers Return Empty-Handed -- May 12:
"I am disgusted by the near obscenity of allowing the so-called First
Nations people to revert to the "old ways" of killing whales.
This is almost the 21st century. Shouldn't everyone, especially certain
humans who have been designated as "closer to the earth" than some of us, be
required to adapt to certain new conditions regarding environmental policy?
I don't care how much of a nice ritual this was for the people, this is
The government's indulgence and mishandling of this matter reminds me of a
yuppie parent at an airport, cellphone in hand, handing his spoiled child a
$5 ice-cream bar every time he whines. A better response, but one that no
one seems to have the guts to make, would be: N-O spells no.
I need to end this rant by quoting my youngest son: "Mom, what if those guys
decide they want to start scalping people like they used to in the old
What can I say?"
The situation at 9:00am PDT....
The hunt is on, but is taking place south of the area in which the Exclusion
Zone can be invoked.
When the hunt first began, protestors were still quite a distance from the
scene. Only one protest jet-ski was able to intervene and prevent the Makah
from striking a whale.
SEDNA's flagship, 'Bulletproof,' has been boarded by the U.S. Coast Guard.
It was alleged that the 'Bulletproof' struck a whale while attempting to
scare whales from the scene, but videotape clearly shows they did not. At
the present time, it is being reported that the 'Bulletproof' and crew have
been arrested and taken off the scene.
Sea Shepherd's 'Sirenian' is still on scene, as well as several other
smaller craft. The Makah are claiming the hunt will continue until they "get
A land-based protest is still scheduled today- please rendevous with other
protestors at Olson's Resort, Sekiu, at 1:00 pm.
More as it develops...