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Japan Admits Using Tsunami Disaster Relief Money to Fund Military Actions Against Unarmed Vegans

Some of our very best friends on earth, including my Darwin Animal Doctors nonprofit co-founder Andrea Gordon, are about to risk their lives, going on Sea Shepherd’s latest whale protection campaign in Antarctica, Operation Divine Wind. The odd thing is that a few months ago, after Japan ended its 2011 whaling season early due to Sea Shepherd anti-whaling activities, Japan announced it was halting its Antarctic whaling program indefinitely. So Operation Divine Wind technically should not have needed to happen. However, Japan’s Antarctic whaling program recently got an unexpected financial boost that allowed it to start up again this year. Specifically, Japan’s government took tsunami victim relief funding, and spent it on military funding for the Japanese whaling fleet.

Japanese whalers fight Sea Shepherd Conservation Society volunteers. Copyright Sea Shepherd

Japan took 2.28 billion yen ($29.4 million USD) that was raised and earmarked to help victims of the Japanese tsunami disaster, and used that money to beef up military security for the Japanese Antarctic whaling fleet, in order to combat Sea Shepherd volunteers. The Sea Shepherd flag ship, the Steve Irwin, cost less than two million USD total in comparison, although it has been successful thus far in repelling the military weaponry of the Japanese fleet anyway (which has included guns, grenades, and LRADs). But this new military funding taken from disaster relief funds dwarfs previous years’ military funding for the Japanese whaling fleet.

The Japanese whaling fleet left port in Japan this week, and is on its way to Antarctica now. So the Sea Shepherd fleet, currently in Australia, will depart to protect whales from the whaling fleet in the next couple weeks.


  1. Comment by

    Victoria B

    on #

    That is disgusting! It’s bad enough there are still nations in this world who can justify the obscene act of whaling, but that issue aside for now, why are there no regulations on how relief money is spent? What about the people it was supposed to help?! Like I said, it’s disgusting.

  2. Comment by

    Brian F.

    on #

    When people are capable of slaughtering innocent creatures for profit— you cant be surprised when they do something like that. Taking money earmarked for humanitarian aid, and using it to further feather their nest is an appalling act.

  3. Comment by

    peter williams

    on #

    The Japanese don’t get it. Mother nature already gave them a fairly severe kick in the ass for murdering one of the planets greatest creatures. When the oceans finally rise and Japan is totally submerged, the citizens of Japan will be looking the surviving whales right in the eyes, as they take their last breaths. That’s karma.

  4. Comment by

    Gineen Cooper

    on #

    i can’t believe i live on a planet where there are groups of blessed people who are fighting against a government to stop them from killing the hallowed whales! its seems so unreal and overwhelmingly sad, like something i read as a kid in a science fiction book. only its real! MAY JUSTICE BE SERVED and the whales be preserved. May all those who harm innocent creatures be brought to an enlightened state and cease murdering.May they begin to hear their heart’s voice.

  5. Comment by


    on #

    I can`t belive this is still happening. This situation must be stoped. What kind of action we can do to stop that??

  6. Comment by


    on #

    Helping for people is not really simple, it is a big help to every people.