News: The Cove
THE COVE EXPOSED
News: The CoveAug 30
A three-part series premiering August 27, 2010 on The Animal Chanel
For years, Taiji, Japan concealed a dark secret — an annual six-month long dolphin hunt, where thousands of dolphins are brutally slaughtered in a tiny, hidden inlet known as “The Cove.” In 2009, the Oscar winning film, THE COVE exposed Taiji’s hunt to the world for the first time. Dolphin activist Ric O’Barry starred in the film, which also detailed his 40-year quest to save dolphins in trouble. Ric is accompanied by his son, filmmaker and fellow activist Lincoln, and a camera crew on the return to the killing cove for the first time since the film’s release. Unlike previous visits, where Ric often operated undercover, this is a very public mission. He and Lincoln are surrounded by a troupe of Japanese journalists interested in learning more about the O’Barrys activities and dolphins. The mission now is to stop the hunt by wielding the power of international outrage and opinion. At first, the mission appears to work — the hunt is delayed and a covert swim to the Cove itself shows no apparent preparations to resume the slaughter. But once Ric and Lincoln leave Taiji, a single phone call brings them rushing back. The hunt has resumed. There are dolphins in the killing cove…
Previous Updates & Related Resources:
Earth Island Journal On Ric O’Barry Of ‘The Cove’ (Winter 2010)
Dolphins Being Killed Again In Japan (01/15/10)
Documentary Available On DVD (12/08/09)
NPR Interviews “The Cove” Director (07/30/09)
Petition: Help Save Japan’s Dolphins (07/09/09)
Winner of the Audience Award for Best Documentary at the 2009 Sundance Film Festival, The Cove follows a high-tech dive team on a mission to discover the truth about the international dolphin capture trade as practiced in Taiji, Japan. Utilizing state-of-the-art techniques, including hidden microphones and cameras in fake rocks, the team uncovers how this small seaside village serves as a horrifying microcosm of massive ecological crimes happening worldwide.
The Cove exposes not only the tragedy of dolphin slaughtering in Japan, but also the dangerously high levels of mercury in dolphin meat and seafood, the cruelty in capturing dolphins for entertainment, and the depletion of our oceans fisheries by worldwide seafood consumption. We also see how the mandate of the International Whaling Commission has been manipulated by the Japanese Fisheries Agency for its benefit and its subsequent effect on the rest of the world.
FIVE THINGS WE CAN DO TO SAVE DOLPHINS & THE OCEANS
THE COVE EXPOSED
By Ric O’Barry
Issue Number 3 – September 1, 2009
Today is September 1st, the first day of the dolphin slaughter season in Japan. But when I arrived today by bus from Kansai Airport with media representatives from all over the world, the notorious Cove from the movie was empty. There were no dolphin killers in sight.
So today is a very good day for dolphins!
I vowed to be back in Taiji when the dolphin killing began. I’ve often been here alone, or accompanied by a few environmentalists. Sometimes, I was able to talk a major media organization into sending someone.
But the people of Japan never learned about the dolphin slaughter, because none of the media in Japan (with the exception of the excellent Japan Times) have ever sent reporters to the killing Cove. Until today!
When I got off the bus at The Cove this afternoon, I was accompanied by my son Lincoln O’Barry’s film crew, a crew from Associated Press, Der Spiegel (the largest magazine in Germany), and the London Independent.
No dolphins and no dolphin killers. We would not have had a story at all, except for the police who were there, waiting all day for us to appear. Nine policemen came to talk to us.
Now, I have said this repeatedly: Unlike The Cove fishermen, the police from this Prefecture have always acted professionally, courteously, and fairly. I have never been mistreated or threatened by the police here. I think they are a microcosm of the people of Japan — the very people I am trying to reach about the dolphins!
And as I was talking with the police, as the international journalists stood around listening, suddenly a camera crew arrived from Japan! And then another! And then still another!
You have to understand that this is SO IMPORTANT. These TV stations have REFUSED to cover the story in Taiji for years and years. NOW, for the first time, they have shown up, with cameras rolling. The head policeman talking with me even said, for the cameras, that the police are not there to support the dolphin killing fishermen. We shook hands, and they left.
As I said, it is a good day for the dolphins. And for me personally, as the police only wanted to talk with me, not arrest me!
The Cove movie led to the strong action by the city of Broome, Australia, in suspending the sister-city relationship with Taiji. So now, the Japanese media are sitting up and listening, for the first time.
And I’m telling them: “This tour is to show journalists the GOOD things about Taiji.” You see, with The Cove movie out now, we don’t have to show the BAD things about Taiji. Soon, the whole world will know about the Taiji dolphin slaughter. And all Japanese will soon know about The Cover-up that has occurred by the government in refusing to stop mercury-contaminated dolphin meat from being sold to unsuspecting Japanese consumers and children.
But Taiji can change this image of shame, if they want to. I will be telling them that the town of Nantucket used to be the capitol of the whale killing industry in the US. Now, it uses its history of whaling combined with whale-watching to market tourism very successfully. Whales and dolphins are worth more alive than dead. Taiji can do this, too. But the killing has to stop.
Yes, today was a good day for dolphins. Tomorrow, I will take journalists with me around town to show them Taiji. Tomorrow, too, I predict will be a good day for dolphins. Every day that we are here and the fishermen KNOW we are here, will likely mean no boats going out to round up dolphins for the killing Cove.
And because of The Cove movie, the dolphin killers must now fear hidden cameras and microphones, even when they THINK we are not here.
And soon the world spotlight from The Cove will shine a very bright light on Taiji.
Please help us by donating.
Your donations and efforts are a key part of our success so far on this tour of Taiji. For the first time, thanks to your support, the secrets of Taiji are being told to the Japanese people by television. And thanks to your help and interest, I can go to Taiji with journalists around me and not fear arrest. This is an historic moment for the dolphins and whales of Japan. I sincerely thank you and ask you to join us in spirit for this return to Taiji.
Save Japan Dolphins Coalition