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‘Save the whales, save the earth :’ Japan’s exit from the International Whaling Commission Kometer, Stefanie 2019

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‘Save the whales, save the earth:’ Japan’s exit from the International Whaling Commissionby Stefanie KometerB.A., John-F.-Kennedy Institute Berlin, Freie Universität Berlin, 2018A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF ARTS in THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE AND POSTDOCTORAL STUDIES (POLITICAL SCIENCE) THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA(Vancouver)December 2019© Stefanie Kometer, 2019The following individuals certify that they have read, and recommend to the Faculty of Graduateand Postdoctoral Studies for acceptance, a thesis entitled:‘Save the Whales, Save the Earth:’ Japan’s Exit from the International Whaling Commissionsubmitted by Stefanie Kometer in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Arts in Political Science Examining Committee: Peter DauvergneSupervisor Yves TiberghienSupervisory Committee Member iiAbstractAfter the controversial exit of Japan from the International Whaling Commission in December2018, many have debated the reason(s) behind this exit. This paper will analyze the discoursesurrounding this issue, focusing on the last decade in general, and this recent exit in particular. Itwill explain the arguments put forward by Japan, which holds a pro-whaling stance, as well as thearguments of the opposing nations with an anti-whaling position. While Japan states that theirpro-whaling stance is largely based on national traditions and culture, and they should thereforebe able to carry out commercial whaling free of others’ judgment, I argue that the reason behindthe withdrawal are the internal political dynamics of the ‘Iron Triangle,’ as well as a push backagainst what they perceive as imperialism by Western states. The Iron Triangle refers to a triangleof  politicians,  government  bureaucrats,  and  big  businesses  drafting  and  enforcing  policy  formutual interests. I will also explain the relationship between the Japanese government and theJapanese population and how it affects, or more precisely, does not affect Japan’s policy makingsurrounding the whaling issue. The thesis will conclude by summarizing the developments andevaluating what can be done in the future to improve the current situation. iiiLay SummaryAs the debates about environmental issues are constantly on the rise, the exit of Japan from theInternational Whaling Commission to restart commercial whaling has caused much controversy.This  thesis  will  evaluate  why  the  International  Whaling  Commission  was  not  successful  inpreventing the recent exit of Japan to resume their commercial whaling, and what this meansmoving forward. I argue that the reasons Japan gave for the exit are not the driving factor as towhy they did it. Instead, I focus on the underlying political and power dynamics within Japan,which explain the path they took more accurately.ivPrefaceThis thesis is the original, unpublished work of the author, Stefanie Kometer. vTable of ContentsAbstract...........................................................................................................................................iiiLay Summary..................................................................................................................................ivPreface..............................................................................................................................................vTable of Contents............................................................................................................................viAcknowledgments.........................................................................................................................viiDedication.....................................................................................................................................viiiChapter 1: Introduction....................................................................................................................1Chapter 2: International Whaling Commission...............................................................................22.1. Controversial Exit.........................................................................................................32.2. Lawful or not?...............................................................................................................4Chapter 3: Japan and the International Whaling Commission (IWC).............................................6Chapter 4: History of Whaling in Japan..........................................................................................8Chapter 5: International Community on Whaling...........................................................................95.1. Health Risk..................................................................................................................105.2. Anthropomorphism.....................................................................................................105.3. Inhumane Killings.......................................................................................................125.4. (Wrongful) Focus on Economic Factors.....................................................................135.5. International Legitimacy.............................................................................................14Chapter 6:  Japan’s Arguments for the Withdrawal.......................................................................156.1. Traditions....................................................................................................................156.2. Food Culture and Abundance......................................................................................166.3. Environmental Issues..................................................................................................186.4. It’s Science..................................................................................................................18Chapter 7: Reasons for Japan’s Exit from the International Whaling Commission......................207.1. Nationalist Rhetoric....................................................................................................207.1.1. The Power of Words................................................................................207.1.2. Victim Mentality......................................................................................227.1.3. Imperialism Push Back............................................................................237.2. Structure of the Political System................................................................................267.2.1. Iron Triangle............................................................................................267.2.2. Media.......................................................................................................287.3. Fisheries Agency.........................................................................................................29Chapter 8: International Criticism.................................................................................................32Chapter 9: Conclusion....................................................................................................................33Bibliography..................................................................................................................................35viAcknowledgments Thank  you  to  the  Department  of  Political  Science  at  UBC.  Thank  you  to  Professor  PeterDauvergne for being my very patient supervisor. Thank you to Professor Yves Tiberghien forexamining this thesis. And thank you to my friends and family for always supporting me through all my shenanigans.viiDedicationTo all the beautiful animals on this planet, especially 52 Blue – poor sucker. viiiChapter 1: IntroductionOn October 4, 2019, the ship Nisshin Maru returned from the first commercial whaling trip in31 years. During the three-month expedition they caught a total of 223 whales. The trip started in Julyand was carried out in Japan’s exclusive economic waters.1 This was the first trip after Japan’s December 2018 announcement that they will officially exitthe International Whaling Commission (IWC) and resume their commercial whaling, after a 30-yearbreak.  In  this  paper,  I  will  be  analyzing  the  discourse  surrounding  the  whaling  issue  and  whatarguments are brought to the forefront by both Japan on the one hand, and the international community,on the other hand.  I will first explain what the International Whaling Commission is and what theyhave done in the past and give a brief history of whaling in Japan. Furthermore, I will analyze how andwhy the discourse has  changed in recent  years  and explain the reasons Japan gives for  their  pro-whaling stance and the reasons presented by anti-whaling proponents. This work will explain the reasons for Japan’s exit and why they continue to hold on to theirpro-whaling stance, despite intense international criticism. I argue, that the reason for this is three-fold:Japan  continues  to  support  a  nationalist  rhetoric,  specifically  focusing  on  pushing  back  againstsupposed imperialism. Furthermore, the structure of their political system plays a major role in this,especially the habit of amakudari hiring and close knit ties of the Fisheries Agency with career civilservants switching positions and re-enforcing the power structures. While Japan officially gives severaldifferent reasons for their withdrawal (explained in Chapter 6), I argue that the aforementioned are theactual reasons for their continued pro-whaling stance.1 Nippon.com, n.p.1Chapter 2: International Whaling Commission (IWC)Andrew Wright et.al. describe the International Whaling Commission, which was founded in1946, as the “international body intended to manage whaling”2 and state that since its inception theIWC “has  expanded its  areas  of  interest  to  ensure the  wider  conservation  of  whales.  Several  keyconservation topics have been taken forward under its auspices including climate change, chemical andnoise pollution, marine debris and whale watching.”3 The IWC’s stated purpose is to “provide for the proper conservation of whale stocks and thusmake possible the orderly development of the whaling industry.”4 And according to Masayuki Komatsuand  Shigeko  Misaki  “The  IWC’s  founding  and  guiding  document,  its  charter,  is  the  ICRW[International Convention for the Regulation of Whaling]. It’s the job of the IWC to set catch limits, orquotas, for the annual catches. These quotas are to be based on advice provided by the IWC’s ScientificCommittee.”5  Furthermore,  the  IWC is  made up of  four  entities:  the  Commission,  the  ScientificCommittee,  the  Technical  Committee  and  the  Finance  and  Administration  Committee,  who  aresupposed to help the IWC and advise them during the decision making processes and development. TheIWC meets annually, where they pass non-binding resolutions.6 The IWC adopted a moratorium oncommercial whaling in 1982, which has been opposed ever since by many whaling nations, one of themost vocal opponents was Japan. The IWC also gives special permits to certain types of whaling, likeaboriginal subsistence and scientific whaling. Japan has used the special permit for ‘scientific’ whalingfor years.2 Wright, The International Whaling Commission – Beyond Whaling, p.13 Ibid.4     International Convention for the Regulation of Whaling, 1946 5 Komatsu, Whales and the Japanese, p.996 Ibid., p.99-1002However, the effectiveness of the IWC has been criticized by many, among those Ian Hurd, whostated that the IWC “now comprises both the main whaling nations and the main anti-whaling nations,and the split between the two is so stark that for years the organization has been barely functioning.”72.1. Controversial ExitOn  December  26,  2018,  Japan  announced  that  they  will  withdraw  from  the  InternationalWhaling Commission and resume commercial whaling. They did say they will shift their whaling to becarried out exclusively in their own coastal waters.This withdrawal did not really come as a surprise to many people and entities involved with theanti-whaling cause. Dennis Normile, for example, wrote in his article that “Japan has never hidden itshope of resuming commercial whaling, banned under an IWC moratorium since 1986. In the meantime,it has used a clause in the IWC treaty that allows members to capture whales for scientific purposes —and  sell  the  meat,”8  and  that  concerning  scientific  whaling  “Japanese  scientists  claimed  whaleautopsies  were  essential  to  determine  the  animals’ diet  and  age,  among  other  things,  but  criticsdismissed the research as a fig leaf for commercial whaling and said it produced few meaningful data.”9Normile further stated that the IWC did admit that there are currently several hundred thousandminke whales in the Antarctic, which means that they certainly do not classify as endangered, but thatthis issue has evolved from being about saving endangered whale populations to just generally seeingthe hunt for whales as inhumane. The Japanese made a proposal to resume commercial whaling andsince the IWC not only rejected Japan’s proposal,  but also “adopted a resolution emphasizing thatIWC’s purpose is to ensure the recovery of cetacean populations to preindustrial levels and reaffirming7 Hurd, Almost Saving Whales, p.1038 Normile, Japan’s Exit from Whaling Group may Benefit Whales, p.1099 Ibid. 3the moratorium on commercial whaling,”10 Normile argues this likely caused Japan to decide to leavethe IWC all together.However,  Japan  stated  that  they  will  shift  their  whaling  to  their  own  coastal  waters  (320kilometer zone) and away from the Antarctic. Japan will also continue to be an observer in the IWC,but will no longer contribute to the IWC budget. Normile highlights one upside that the exit might havewhich  is  that  the  IWC can  “spend  more  time  on  other  threats  to  whales,  including  ship  strikes,bycatches, habitat loss, and what Ramage calls the ‘existential question’ for whales’ future: the effectsof climate change.”11The National Post also wrote about it saying that “Japan announced Wednesday it is leaving theInternational Whaling Commission to resume hunting the animals for commercial use but said it willno longer go to the Antarctic for its much-criticized annual killings of hundreds of whales.”12 TheNational  Post  quotes  Chief  Cabinet  Secretary Yoshihide Suga as saying that  resuming commercialwhaling is “in line with Japan's basic policy of promoting sustainable use of aquatic living resourcesbased on scientific evidence” and that they “have reached a decision that it is impossible in the IWC toseek the coexistence of states with different views.”13 2.2. Lawful or not?Japan has been criticized by many countries and international organizations that their researchwhaling (specifically in Antarctica) is illegal. However, in his work Japan's Research Whaling Is NotUnlawful and Does Not Violate CITES Trade Rules, Dan Goodmam claims that these allegations areunfounded. He states that the “conclusion that Japan’s research whaling in the Antarctic is unlawful andan abuse of rights under the International Convention for the Regulation of Whaling (ICRW) is based10 Normile, Japan’s Exit from Whaling Group may Benefit Whales, p.10911 Ibid., p.11012 The National Post, n.p.13 Ibid. 4on misuse of evidence and failure to properly interpret Article VIII of the Convention and the legalstatus of recommendatory non-binding resolutions.”14 And further, that there are “serious analytic flaws[which] render the conclusions of the two independent legal experts panel reports invalid and relegatethe reports to the status of IFAW [International Fund for Animal Welfare] propaganda.”15However, this article by Dan Goodman has been heavily critiqued, among the critics are VassiliPapastavrou and Patrick Ramage, who say that he only selected certain parts of the evaluation of theJapanese whaling case. Papastavrou and Ramage state that the panel which was in charge of this didexplain that “there is strong evidence that such scientific whaling is in violation of the commercialwhaling moratorium and raised serious questions of compliance with the UN Convention on the Law ofthe Sea (UNCLOS). In addition to UNCLOS, serious questions of compliance with a variety of otherconventions  were  identified,  including the  Convention  on Biological  Diversity,  the  Convention  onInternational Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), and the Convention onthe Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources.”16 14 Goodman, Japan's Research Whaling Is Not Unlawful and Does Not Violate CITES Trade Rules, p.18215 Ibid.16 Papastavrou, Commercial Whaling by Another Name, p.1845Chapter 3: Japan and the International Whaling Commission (IWC)Japan and the International Whaling Commission had a rocky relationship since its inception.There have been plenty of issues that were addressed by both whaling and anti-whaling nations, andmany  of  them still  need  to  be  resolved.  Nicola  Wheen  highlights  one  of  these,  which  happenedrelatively recently, which is special permit whaling. She says that special permit whaling is probablythe  most  controversial  part  of  the IWC’s work.  Specifically  the  special  permit  for  Japan for  their‘research whaling’ in the Southern Ocean.She summarizes the issue as follows: “In 2014, the International Court of Justice found thatspecial permit research programs are subject to objective scrutiny, and that JARPA II (the programbeing implemented by Japan at the time) was inconsistent with the ICRW (Whaling in the Antarctic(Australia  v  Japan;  New  Zealand  Intervening),  31  March  2014).  Following  this  decision,  Japandiscontinued JARPA II but indicated its intention to continue lethal research on whales under a newprogram, which it said would be compliant with the court’s decision. In response, the IWC passedResolution 2014-5 at its meeting in 2014, requesting contracting governments not to issue any newspecial  permits  unless  the  research  program  they  propose  has  been  reviewed  by  the  ScientificCommittee.  The  commission  has  considered  the  committee’s  report  on  the  program,  assessed  theresponsible  government’s  compliance  with  the  review process,  and made recommendations  on  themerits of the program. Japan resumed whaling in 2015 under a new research program, NEWREP-A,observing  that  it  had  complied  with  the  schedule’s  binding  instruction  to  governments  to  submitproposals to the Scientific Committee for review and comment. Japan had indeed done this and hadalso responded to the recommendations the committee subsequently made. However, Japan did notwait for the committee to finish its review of NEWREP-A or for the IWC to consider the research6program before resuming special permit whaling in 2015 and, thus, did not comply with Resolution2014-5”17 This  is  just  one  example  of  Japan’s  behavior  when  it  comes  to  the  IWC and  it  has  beencriticized many times since the inception of the IWC for not complying with the rules and decisionsmade by them. Some other issues that have been continuously brought up by non-whaling states, andlargely ignored by Japan,  are  that  the Japanese government  provide adequate proof  why scientificwhaling is necessary and beneficial and that they cease lethal research methods. 17 Wheen, 23. International Whaling Commission, p.544 7Chapter 4: History of Whaling in Japan Petrice Flowers summarized the history of Japanese whaling and she said that they have beenwhaling since at least the 1500s using harpoons, after that, towards the end of the 17 th century theystarted a net method, which was used until  the end of the 19 th century.  After that they used moremodern methods (mainly copied from Norwegian methods).  She also explains  that  whaling in  theearlier days almost exclusively took place in Japan’s own coastal waters by the communities who livedthere.Furthermore, she explains that “whaling communities predated the whaling industry becauseearly whaling was a community-based, localized activity. The development and growth of a whalingindustry in Japan spread whaling communities that had previously been concentrated in some coastalareas to a larger area of the country and the sea. Because these communities were centered aroundwhaling, their survival – economic, social and political – became dependent on the fate of the whalingindustry.”18 However,  Jun Morikawa said that  whaling was a very localized activity since “whale meatpreservation methods as well as transport and distribution systems”19 were not present yet. He criticizesthe notion that whaling in general was an activity that most – or even many – Japanese people wereinvolved in and that it is certainly not a hundreds of years old tradition, carried out by the Japanesepeople at large.18 Flowers, Shaping State Identity, p.11219 Morikawa, Whaling in Japan, p.288Chapter 5: International Community on WhalingSince  the  1970s/80s  there  was  a  growing  concern  for  the  environment,  and  thus,environmentalism became a  topic  of  discussion  around  the  globe.  Komatsu  and  Misaki  state  that“Environmentalist organizations that adopted the Save the Whales campaigns grew rapidly in numberand  power.  Soon it  became the  social  norm to  support  anti-whaling,”20 and  that  the  anti-whalingsentiment became a powerful force and was supported and funded through donations by supporters.They  state  that  specifically  the  United  States  “continued  at  each  annual  meeting  to  propose  amoratorium for commercial whaling [and most] of the former major whaling nations had also changedtheir  viewpoint  and  became  anti-whaling  members  of  the  IWC.”21 Jun  Morikawa  explains  thatnowadays “there are many around the world who feel offence, shock confusion or pity in response topro-whaling arguments from an economic superpower.”22However, Komatsu and Misaki criticized this norm shift by saying that “The slogan ‘Save theWhales, Save the Earth’ came to the minds of many as an untainted expression of concern over thefuture of mankind. The whale was enshrined as the icon of environmentalism,”23 but that this was notbased in science and that the (mostly) Western governments exaggerated the gravity of the situationwhen it came to the amount of danger the whale population was actually exposed to. They say that theanti-whaling position “had become the politically correct mainstream of the developed nations andthose former whaling nations led by the United States and the United Kingdom had nothing to lose byjoining  the  anti-whaling  bloc.  Rather,  the  so-called  ‘like-minded’ countries  gained  the  domesticpopularity by assuming the ‘green’ posture in a cloak of ‘Save the Whales’ policy.”2420 Komatsu, Whales and the Japanese, p.8721 Ibid., p.88-8922 Morikawa, Whaling in Japan, p.123 Komatsu, Whales and the Japanese, p.8724 Ibid., p.9095.1. Health RiskIn their article It's not just poor science – Japan's “scientific” whaling may be a human healthrisk too Parsons et.al. criticize whaling for being a potential health hazard to both the people eating thewhale  meat,  as  well  as  the  people  catching and preparing the  whales.  Specifically,  they  state  that“There is little evidence that the potential human health implications of Brucella infection have beenconsidered in the Japanese whaling programme; not only is there a risk of exposure through ingestionof contaminated meat, but the bacteria can be transferred by direct contact with infected tissues, bloodor  urine.”25 And  that  this  is  specifically  very  risky  for  the  workers  handling  the  potentiallycontaminated  whales.  Furthermore,  they  explain  that  “cetacean products  have  been  utilized  in  theproduction of livestock feed […] which expands the potential  for infection to non-human animals:marine mammal Brucella spp. have been shown to induce infection and cause abortions in livestock.”26This point is  not mentioned as often as other arguments, neither by the IWC, nor by internationalorganizations, but is certainly as important as other arguments.   5.2. AnthropomorphismIt appears that one general attitude concerning the whaling issue is the belief that whales aresomehow ‘special’ animals,  i.e.  there  is  something  that  makes  them somehow ‘better’ than  otheranimals and they should therefore be above approach by humans. Komatsu and Misaki state that this notion developed in the 1970s where there were  a lot oftelevision shows produced about whales and dolphins, highlighting their friendliness, like Flipper, forexample. They also state that these shows specifically highlight the friendliness and intelligence of25 Parsons, It’s Not just Poor Science, p.111826 Ibid.10dolphins and how they are very similar to whales in that regard. They claim that shows like these arethe root of seeing dolphins and whales as anthropomorphic and ‘special’ animals.27This notion was then further supported and expanded in the 1980s, again through television andthe media in general, where even killer whales, like Free Willy, were turned into friendly and intelligentcompanions for humans. Komatsu and Misaki further claim that through this “children were taught thatwhales are  equal  to human beings.  When these children grew up, they were likely to believe thatwhales were sacrosanct and at the top of the animal kingdom.”28 They state that the ‘indoctrination’ ofyoung people with this belief “makes the paradigm for the moral argument.”29                 It  is  certainly  true  that  an  anthropomorphic  approach  is  used  regularly,  specifically  byGreenpeace; another example of this would be ‘Ran-Tan,’ an Orangutan who appeared in a Christmasadvertisement produced by Greenpeace. This ad also appeared to be directed to a very young audience.However, this is not an unusual tactic in general, trying to convince people to do (or not do) somethingby emotionally triggering them is frequentily used in advertisements.  However, there is still the question left as to why most people now agree on this. As Komatsuand Misaki themselves mention in their book, even former whaling countries have come around. Now,they may claim that this is because of other reasons, however, it could certainly be the case that thesenations have also agreed that whales really should be unapproachable. It  seems  that  Komatsu  and  Misaki  have  hyperbolized  the  situation  to  fit  their  argument.Especially statements like “children were taught that whales are equal to human beings”30 just cannotbe substantiated with evidence by them, or anybody else. However, it still needs to be mentioned that27 Komatsu, Whales and the Japanese, p.8828 Ibid.29 Ibid. 30 Ibid.11people around the globe just have different attitudes towards certain animals. As Petrice Flowers said:“The point about cultural differences with regards to the treatment of animals cannot be overlooked.”31 Theodore Bestor also talks about this anthropomorphism. He states that it may be difficult forAmericans, who have been raised watching Flipper and the likes, to understand why the Japanese haveseemingly no qualms killing and eating whales and dolphins,  however, Japanese “regard Americanattitudes  toward  whales  and  dolphins  as  bizarre  anthropomorphism  and  are  surprised  to  learn  ofwidespread American boycotts of albacore tuna to protest the by-catches of dolphins that result fromsome fishing techniques. In other words, the American and Japanese matrices within which creaturesare pigeonholed as edible, ornamental, wild, or anthropomorphic are quite at odds.”325.3. Inhumane KillingsA further point of contention among the international community is the inhumane killings ofwhales. This is certainly exacerbated by the previous point, that whales are seen as special, intelligent,and graceful animals, that should just be left alone by humans. In their work Is Japan's whaling humane? Nick  Gales et.al. state that there is video footagetaken by Greenpeace which clearly shows the dramatic circumstances around the killing of whales.They state that this video provides “a unique opportunity to obtain quantitative data relevant to thewelfare aspects of  the killing of whales.”33 They summarize the video as  follows:  “Catches  of  16individual  Antarctic  minke  whales  (Balaenoptera  bonaerensis)  were  analysed  and in  two of  theseasphyxiation  appeared  the  most  likely  cause  of  death.  Fewer than  one  in  five  whales  were killedinstantaneously and the average time to death for the remaining whales was around 10 min.”34 Komatsuand Misaki state that many countries “often come to the IWC arguing that whaling is a moral argument,31 Flowers, Shaping State Identity, p.10232 Bestor, Tsukiji, p.13133 Gales, Is Japan’s Whaling Humane?, p.40834 Ibid.12and not a resource management issue.”35 The IWC and international organizations have argued manytimes that these killings are brutal  and unnecessary and need to be ceased or drastically improvedimmediately.  5.4. (Wrongful) Focus on Economic FactorsPetrice Flowers criticizes the IWC for focusing too much on the economic arguments againstwhaling. She states that too many focus on the fact that the whaling industry per se provides very littleeconomic benefit for Japan as a whole. It does not produce a lot of profit, especially because whalemeat is not, and never has been, a significant part of Japanese people’s diet. Many critics focus on this,so they can argue that whaling should be given up all together because of its minuscule economicimportance.  Flowers  says  that  this  “allows  the  IWC to  ignore  Japan’s  arguments  for  the  culturalsignificance of whaling. The preoccupation with economics indicates the ‘modern’ belief that economicconcerns are the first priority for advanced countries; countries that are beyond the pull of ‘primitive’concerns such as culture.”36 She explains that other states who used to engage in whaling, gave it up when it was no longerprofitable for them to do it, from an economic standpoint, because they had other things to substitutethe whale products with. Since consuming whale meat was not the main factor for whaling in thesestates to begin with, it was easy for them to give it up once they found cheaper, less time and workconsuming alternatives.37 However, in Japan whale meat seems to still be a requested resources and“The connection between the whaling and fishing industries in Japan and the fact that marine productsare an important part of the Japanese diet, in a purely economic analysis, suggests that whaling couldcontinue even if the overall demand fell.”3835 Komatsu, Whales and the Japanese, p.10336 Flowers, Shaping State Identity, p.11437 Ibid., p.11338 Ibid., p.11413Keiko Hirata explains this from the Japanese viewpoint: “It is natural to assume that such normnoncompliance would be based on materialism, that it is an attempt to maximize material self-interest.[…] However,  in this case, the business-centered explanation fails. The Japanese whaling industry,which employs only a few hundred people and generates at best marginal profits, is too small and weakto influence government policy.”395.5. International LegitimacyPetrice Flowers also states that “Calls for the preservation of whales grew out of the desire tocreate a new relationship between humans and the environment” and that  “This also involved a newidentity for states as part of an international community increasingly concerned with the environmentas an international issue.”40 She says that if you wanted to be seen as a responsible member of theinternational community you had to be concerned about the environment, and that this led “many non-whaling  states  to  join  the  IWC  as  an  easy  way  to  gain  reputations  for  being  environmentallyconscious”41 in hopes to gain more international legitimacy. However,  Flowers also explains that “The same desire also accounts for Japan’s continuingefforts to work within the IWC despite relatively few results. Exploring the importance of identity onthis issue also uncovers how discourses of civilization shape the expectations of states. Thus, despiteJapan’s claims under international law to whale and arguments regarding the cultural importance ofwhaling in Japan, the right to whale has been repeatedly denied.”4239 Hirata, Why Japan Supports Whaling, p.129-13040 Flowers, Shaping State Identity, p.11741 Ibid.42 Ibid., p.117-11814Chapter 6: Arguments for Japan’s Exit from the International Whaling CommissionThere are many arguments that Japan gave explaining why they exited the IWC, however, theseare somewhat not convincing, and seem to be used to try to justify their exit to critics. These argumentshave been perpetuated for years and have been almost verbatim used over and over again but a varietyof people in Japan, but actually seem to have little to no impact on Japan’s policy on whaling currently.6.1. TraditionsWhaling has a long history in Japan and there are many traditions surrounding it. Komatsu andMisaki state that it has always been prevalent in all aspects of Japanese history. One example they giveis that there are many traditional songs about this topic, two of these are, for example, the Kayoi andthe  Ukitsu  Funauta.  Komatsu  and  Misaki  further  state  that  there  were  many  exchanges  betweendifferent whaling communities, and exchanging these songs was, among other things, to trade “whalingideas, techniques and technologies.”43 They further explain that during a time where resources weregenerally scarce whales were used in their entirety and nothing was wasted and that whales were animportant and cherished resource for the people.  Petrice Flowers claims that the history of whaling “demonstrates the basis of Japan’s argumentfor a cultural right to whale based on the belief that an extended whaling community and whalingculture in Japan had developed over time. It is this community that places Japan in a borderline positionon this issue between “modern” whaling states that viewed whaling primarily as an industry that wasengaged for economic profits and “traditional” whaling nations – limited by contemporary internationallaw to indigenous peoples – whose whaling practices are viewed by the international community asprimarily part of culture and subsistence.”4443 Komatsu, Whales and the Japanese, p.5844 Flowers, Shaping State Identity, p.109-11015However, Petrice Flowers explains that this may be one of – if not the only – reason why Japanstill clings to this argument, since “Even the head of the Japan Whaling Association recognizes thatJapan’s interest in whaling is not primarily economic when he stated, ‘whaling is an extremely smallpart of our economy but in whalers’ hearts there is hundreds of years of tradition.’”45 There are evensome rituals  performed to  honor whales  as  Kalland and Moeran explain:  “All  whaling companiessponsor a series of rituals – both at sea and on land – connected with whaling. Some – such as whalememorial services, or daily offerings at the company’s Shintō altar – are performed by the company’smanagement.”46However, as mentioned earlier, whaling for the longest time was only conducted by a very smallportion of the Japanese people, exclusively those who lived close to the coast. So using the argumentthat whaling is a national tradition that all Japanese people are affected by, and care deeply about, ismisleading.  Morikawa  points  this  out  as  well,  stating  “the  fact  that  some  areas  of  the  Japanesearchipelago had historically developed a whale-eating culture and that this culture has unique valueshould not be denied. However, it is both unfair and misleading to assert that these exceptional regionalcases and the later transitory, short-lived post-war phenomenon form an overall historical precedent anda basis for justifying and promoting Japan’s modern-day commercial whaling.”476.2. Food Culture and AbundanceWhile the Japanese claimed that up until their recent exit (to restart commercial whaling) theirwhaling has only been ‘scientific,’ it is clear that whaling was still used to eventually sell the meat forconsumption. In his work  Fisheries management in Japan Mitsutaku  Makino says that the Japanese“are fish-eaters. […] Fisheries products are the second largest source of total protein intake, and the45 Flowers, Shaping State Identity, p.113-11446 Kalland, Japanese Whaling, p.5847 Morikawa, Whaling in Japan, p.3316largest source of animal protein intake.”48  It is also largely believed that whale meat “is one reason forthe good health and long life expectancy of the Japanese.”49 Theodore Bestor also says that “whaleconsumption is a cornerstone of traditional Japanese culture.”50Komatsu and Misaki  also argue that  while  in  the West  the whale has  been elevated above‘regular’ animal status, in Japan the whale seemingly is just an animal which can be consumed just thesame as a cow or a chicken. However, it is also argued by some experts that “Shifting consumer tastesand a growing environmental awareness have already led to a steep decline in Japanese whale meatconsumption, from 203,000 tons in 1965 to just 4000 tons in 2015.”51 Epstein says that today “whalemeat has become an expensive delicacy in Japan, and it is no longer widely consumed.”52Jun Morikawa also points out that “the argument that whales represent an important part of thenational food culture is used to justify the necessity of whaling, while large amounts of unsold whalemeat  from  previous  research  whaling  expeditions  lie  unsold  in  warehouses  and  large-scale  salescampaigns have been needed to urge the general public to consume more whale meat.”53 So it seemsthat it is actually exaggerated how much demand there really is for whale meat in the general public. Furthermore, Morikawa explains that it is not only debatable how much demand there is forwhale meat currently, but also how much there was historically. He says that “Considering also thatseasonal  factors made supply of whale meat  unstable,  the whale-eating culture was,  besides beinglimited in  geographic  terms,  probably  no more than  a  secondary  food source.  The conditions  thatallowed Japan’s whale-eating culture to escape its geographic boundaries and spread across the nationwere not achieved until the period between the two World Wars.”54 48 Makino, Fisheries Management in Japan, p.449 Ibid. 50 Bestor, Tsukiji, p.14351 Normile, Japan’s Exit from Whaling Group may Benefit Whales, p.10952 Epstein, The Power of Words in International Relations, p.23053 Morikawa, Whaling in Japan, p.354 Ibid., p.28176.3. Environmental IssuesIn their book Komatsu and Misaki also criticize the claim which is, according to them, oftenrepeated by international organizations, that stopping whaling all together will benefit the environmentto a  substantial  (or even noticeable)  degree.  They state  that  “Saving whales won’t  cure any otherenvironmental problems. [And that] Even if the depleted stocks were saved, other problems still remainto be solved.”55 They also theorize (or conspire) that the United States, in particular, pushed the ‘Savethe Whales’ agenda to cover up their own environmental destruction. They state that when the USproposed a 10-year moratorium for whaling at the Stockholm Conference they actually tried to divertattention form the environmental destruction caused by chemical defoliants in Vietnam, for which theUnited States was responsible.  They conclude this  chapter by stating that ultimately “the Save theWhales  movement will  not  provide any effective  solution to  the  environmental  problems we nowface.”56However, the question can be raised whether this really ever was a claim that the internationalcommunity made? This debate seems to not necessarily be about saving the environment in general,just the whales in particular. Komatsu and Misaki did not give any prove that people claimed thatstopping whaling will “save the environment,” just that we should not kill creatures like whales, just toeat them. At times, certain species were a the brink of extinction, just so that people can have thepleasure of eating them. At no point do they provide a clear example of people insinuating that awhaling moratorium would significantly, or even at all, positively impact the environment at large. 6.4. It’s ScienceIn her work Killing whales for science? Virginia Morell criticizes the notion that Japan purports,which is that scientific killings of whales are necessary and produce relevant and helpful information55 Komatsu, Whales and the Japanese, p.8856 Ibid.18about whales. She states that under the International Whaling Convention the Scientific Committee issupposed to  review the proposals  for  scientific  whaling,  but researchers  are  heavily criticizing theresults that the Japanese can provide. She quotes Daniel Pauly, who used to be the director of the UBCFisheries Centre, who said that “It's outrageous to call this science; it's a complete charade.”57 This is aproblem that many anti-whaling nations and organizations have mentioned often, but Japan maintainsthat their whaling is scientific and necessary and even beneficial to certain whale species. 57 Morell, Killing Whales for Science?, p.533 19Chapter 7: Reasons for Japan’s Exit from the International Whaling CommissionAs Keiko Hirata explains in her article Why Japan Supports Whaling, Japan’s stance on whalingis somewhat puzzling since it  “is not consistent with its internationally cooperative position on otherenvironmental matters.”58  As Japan has evolved into an important global superpower it has generallysupported  what  can be considered ‘international  norms’ on many issues,  however,  their  stern pro-whaling stance is puzzling to some. There may be more factors that contributed to this stance, but thefollowing seem to be the most important ones that have keep the pro-whaling dynamics in Japan aliveand well. 7.1. Nationalist Rhetoric7.1.1. The Power of WordsIn her book The power of words in international relations – Birth of an anti-whaling discourse,Charlotte Epstein explains the importance of how issues are talked about. She specifically analyzes thediscourse around the whaling issue, and mentions that what has been actively done, (and is often donein other political issue) is creating an ‘us vs. ‘them,’ or ‘good’ vs. ‘bad,’ mentality. When it comes to thewhaling issue, the anti-whaling nations (whaling supporters often talk about ‘the West’ here, as if thoseare synonymous) have has done this too.  Epstein states that “The evil agent (“them”) compels therighteous agent (“us”) to take action.”59In the discourse around whaling it is especially difficult to define what is acceptable and what isnot, and which animals can be exploited and which can not. One way around the issue of resumingcommercial whaling used to be the notions of ‘aboriginal subsistence whaling’ and ‘scientific whaling.’The latter was extensively used by Japan the entire time the commercial whaling moratorium was inplace,  to  be  able  to  continue  whaling  despite  it  being  largely  frowned  upon  by  the  international58 Hirata, Why Japan Supports Whaling, p.12959 Epstein, The Power of Words in International Relations, p.17520community. So while this issue may be about the whales on the surface, it goes much deeper than that,involving power dynamics between the states in the IWC and who gets to make the rules within it.Epstein explains how these continuing debates and struggles have led to the whaling discourse to enter“into the construction of national identities” in pro-whaling nations like Japan.60Epstein also explains that some issues that have originally arisen on the international sphere aspart  of other debates are used and relayed on others.  Japan did this  as well,  since they argue thatcontinuing whaling is important for the issues of ‘food security’ and ‘sustainable use.’ The Japaneseargue that whaling around their coastal waters helps the nation as a whole to achieve food security aswell as that this is done sustainable.61 Both of these issues were for the longest time not part of thisspecific debate at all, but when they have popped up in other areas, Japan relayed them to the whalingissue to give them more arguments to continue with it. Another point that Morikawa highlighted is that “The government uses the terms ‘Japan’ and‘the Japanese’ in relation to the whaling issue to give the impression that it represents the intentions andinterests of the Japanese people as a whole” but this is “misleading and fails to reflect reality.”62 So thegovernment stating that the Japanese population fully stands behind the decisions of a small portion ofthe government, as well as the Fisheries Agency, may be misleading or even outright lies. Coady  et.al.  also  talk  about  the  difficulties  in  defining  the  parameters  of  the  discussion.Specifically  highlighting  the  notion  of  ‘scientific  whaling,’ as  mentioned  earlier.  They  state  “thatinternational laws that rely on science have no meaningful basis, no clarity and no potential to bind thestates that are parties to them, because scientific research can mean whatever those states want it tomean.”63 This is, of course, true in Japan’s case. They have been critique many times but a variety of60 Epstein, The Power of Words in International Relations, p.22061 Ibid., p.231-23562 Morikawa, Whaling in Japan, p.463 Coady, Scientific Whaling and How Philosophy of Science can Help Break the International Deadlock, p.6421activists and experts that their ‘scientific’ whaling does not harvest any meaningful information aboutwhales. 7.1.2.  Victim MentalityTying in with this is the notion of ‘othering.’ There seems to be an active push back, as well as areactionary response from Japan for being made out to be the ‘bad guy,’ especially by the United States.The us vs. them notion is “implicitly reproduced every time the anti-whaling discourse is spoken.”64In their work Whales and the Japanese Masayuki Komatsu and Shigeko Misaki generally, andregularly,  critique the treatment that the Japanese have received from the international community ingeneral, and from the United States in particular, regarding their stance on whaling. This is a verydominant notion in the discourse surrounding the whaling issue, but they go as far as to state that afterthe anti-whaling sentiment became mainstream in the 1960s and 70s a general anti-Japanese sentimentquickly followed. They say that ‘the West’ was angry because Japan was the only country still huntingwhales  in  the  Antarctic  as  well  as  about  that  fact  that  “Japan  was  growing rapidly  into  a  strongeconomic power and emerging as a relentless competitor to Western civilization.”65Komatsu and Misaki state  that video footage of the Japanese killing whales was circulatedaround the world creating outrage, but that people neglected to see how other countries treat animalslike  cattle  in  slaughterhouses,  for  example.  They  further  critique  that  “Few realized  the  effort  todevelop a quick and effective method for killing whales,”66 as well  as the fact that “The penthritegrenade was developed by Japan and seen as one of the most effective ways for humane killing ofwhales. [And that] Japan also complied with demands for anti-whaling powers that it use a rifle as asecondary killing method, similar to Norway, instead of using the safer method of the electric lance.”67 64 Epstein, The Power of Words in International Relations, p.25065 Komatsu, Whales and the Japanese, p.8866 Ibid.67 Ibid.22Furthermore, the Japanese government invoked “a variety of key phrases such as ‘tradition’,‘unique culinary culture’, ‘sustainable use’ and ‘resumption of whaling based on research and scientificsurveys’ in order to shape the debate and counter criticism of its policies and legitimize its position onthe whaling issue.”68 As mentioned above, Morikawa also criticized that the government usually usesthe terms ‘Japan’ and ‘the Japanese’ to make it seem as though their decision are a direct result from thepopular  opinion  of  the  public,  even  though this  “is  misleading  and  fails  to  reflect  reality.”69 TheJapanese government  is  also constantly working to  “mobilize public  opinion in  favour of whalingwithin Japan”70 in order to be able to back up their position during international negotiations. Because  of  these  developments  Hirata  warns  that  “Militant  action  against  the  Japanesegovernment, through the physical blockage of whaling vessels or shaming campaigns, may backfire,strengthening the nationalist sentiments of the Japanese public and policy makers.”71Epstein states that the pro-whaling stance of Japan may be more of a “new identity, born out ofresistance to the anti-whaling discourse, that is also grounded in sometimes ancient whaling practices.It is an activist identity, reclaimed against a dominant global discourse and very aware of itself as theidentity of a dominated and resisting minority. In other words, the new pro-whaling identity is an anti-anti-whaling identity.”72 7.1.3 Imperialism Push BackOne of the main arguments by the Japanese government as well as the Japanese pro-whalingactivists is that the West critiquing them for their practices is akin to imperialism. Komatsu and Misakiare very direct about this when they state that “There is an overwhelming tide of ignorance in Western68 Morikawa, Whaling in Japan, p.369 Ibid., p.470 Ibid., p.571 Hirata, Why Japan Supports Whaling, p.14972 Epstein, The Power of Words in International Relations, p.24123nations on all issues surrounding whales and whaling. […] Westeners generally operate out of emotionrather than informed reason on issues surrounding whaling.”73 As mentioned before,  whales to theJapanese are nothing more than a resource,  and can be treated as such. They say that the Westernnations need to accept and respect this. They continue by stating that their “food of choice comes froman abundant  species”74 and that  at  this  point  they “can only make one assumption  – that  we [theJapanese] are the victims of ethnic and cultural discrimination; that we are being subjected to attemptedcultural  imperialism. And the reality is  that cultural  imperialism is essentially a Western reality,  inwhich it is assumed that ‘West is Best’, and that all its ways and customs should be adhered to by therest of the world.”75 Theodore  Bestor  echoes  these  ideas  and  says  that  “Seen  from  a  commonplace  Japaneseperspective,  environmental  criticism of  the  nation’s  finishing policies  and of  their  society’s  eatinghabits is a stinging assault on Japan itself. Many ordinary Japanese wonder whether these attacks aremotivated solely or even primarily by ecological concerns, and question scientific claims marshaled byJapan’s critics. They see themselves and their cuisine vilified as barbaric and regard the unending setsof foreign demands […] not  as well  meaning but,  at  best,  as capriciously ethnocentric carping byEuropeans and North Americans.”76 However, the fact that the general population often think this maybe due to the perpetual propaganda by the Japanese government to vilify the ‘Westerners’ as much asthey have supposedly vilified the Japanese. And the media in Japan usually promotes the stance of thegovernment and is not particularly critical of it in general, concerning this issue in particular. Komatsu and Misaki say that the Japanese leave other countries alone and do not criticize themand their traditions, but are constantly criticized by others for their own actions. They say that theJapanese “freely, and largely without judgment, acknowledge that those in the West like to eat things73 Komatsu, Whales and the Japanese, p.9874 Ibid., p.10375 Ibid., p.103-10476 Bestor, Tsukiji, p.14324we generally do not eat. We do not see it as particularly our business hat they choose to consumevenison, or any game animal, although in parts of Japan, deer are protected as a sacred animal.”77Christopher  Butler-Stroud  says  that  “the  nationalistic  rhetoric  and  accompanying  spuriousprojection of Japan’s problems as being caused by Euro-American aggression […]  helps us understandthe way whaling is used as a symbol of ‘being Japanese’ and of a Japan that is perceived to be underconstant external pressure by foreigners. It  also allows us to contextualize the Japanese nationalistpolemic that whaling is a Japanese ‘tradition’ that has been subject to foreign attempts to control the‘very soul of Japan.’”78  He also quotes O’Dwyer who said that “While most Japanese today rarely eatwhale meat, some defend pelagic whaling out of a belief that Japanese eating habitats should not bedictated to by foreign activists.”79 So again, this seems to be not necessarily a pro-whaling stance, butinstead an anti-anti-whaling, or in other words, and anti-West stance.  Butler-Stroud further argued that the Japanese government “worked to fashion and define theJapanese public’s image of the anti-whaling movement, characterizing it as emotional and illogical.This negative campaign has attempted to put anti-whalers on a par with terrorist organizations.”80 Thisstrategy has  largely  worked and the  “Japanese  mass  media  generally  cooperate  by  reporting  anti-whaling actions as disruptive activities that get in the way of Japan’s sovereignty and democratic rightto  whale.”81 Additionally  to  that  “Whaling is  held up as  an example  of  local,  sustainable  practicefounded in traditional knowledge and as a bastion against the cultural imperialism of the postcolonialstate.”82Kalland also talks about the problem with imperialism when he says that “It smacks of culturalimperialism, therefore – if not of racism – for one cultural group to impose its values on the other,77 Komatsu, Whales and the Japanese, p.10478 Butler-Stroud, What Drives Japanese Whaling Policy?, p.379 Ibid.80 Ibid.81 Ibid.82 Epstein, The Power of Words in International Relations, p.23625especially when the latter is seen to be morally inferior to oneself. The Japanese are […] depicted as abarbaric and gruesome people who kill for pleasure. In their campaigns against whaling, animal rightsgroups carry on the dubious western tradition of forcing upon others the values which at any givenmoment happen to be in vogue at home.”83 Kalland also states that many Japanese question whetherthis is really an ethical question at all, he says “They [the Japanese] believe that whaling has become aconvenient symbol for those who try to create anti-Japanese feelings in western countries where manypeople already blame the Japanese for many of the economic problems found in the West.”84 However,he  fails  to  give  an  example  of  when  ‘the  West’ blamed  Japan  specifically  for  any  of  their  own‘economic problems,’ let alone how exactly this would then lead to them criticizing Japan for theirwhaling practices. 7.2. Structure of the Political System7.2.1. Iron TriangleJun Morikawa explained that Japan’s stance on whaling may be perpetuated because of thepower dynamics between certain entities in the Japanese government and government agencies. Hesummarized  this  vicious  cycle  thusly:  “The  government’s  approach  to  the  whaling  issue  hasemphasized a systematic public relations operation inside and outside the country, which serves twoclear  functions.  The  pro-whaling  forces  have  used  this  PR  campaign  to  influence  and  gain  theunderstanding and support of domestic public opinion which, in turn, gives the Japanese government astronger negotiating position on the issue in international forums. At the same time, those promotingwhaling policies have made it difficult for the Japanese public to increase their awareness and obtaininformation on whaling that does not favour the government’s arguments.”8583 Kalland, Japanese Whaling, p.19384 Ibid., p.19485 Morikawa, Whaling in Japan, p.226Many  scholars  have  argued  that  there  may  be  an  ulterior  motive  of  the  government  formaintaining a pro-whaling stance. Atsushi Ishii and Ayako Okubo explain that “Portraying Japanesepolitics as culturally justified is one major strategy that has been propagated both domestically andinternationally. Cultural justification is difficult to criticize because, for Japanese, culture is connectedto nationalism”86 and while this may be seen as a negative (or at least potentially problematic) thing inthe West, the Japanese see this as a “valid reason for accepting all manner of practices whose politicalnature  has  been  lost  sight  of.”87 And thus,  culture  and  national  traditions  become “an  excuse  forsystematic exploitation, for legal abuses, for racketeering and for other forms of uncontrolled exerciseof  power.”88 And internationally,  “culture  is  made  an  excuse  for  not  living  up to  agreements  andresponsibilities, and for not taking action in the face of pressure from trading partners.”89Midori  Kagawa-Fox  explains  the  so-called  ‘Iron  Triangle’  which  “comprises  a  closerelationship between government bureaucrats, politicians, and big business held together by commoninterests.”90 These  are  supposed  to  be  controlling  and  being  responsible  for  the  nation’s  whalingpolicies. She explains that “The arguments that are put forward to support the claim that the policyadvances national interests, upholds cultural pride, and protects a whaling tradition, are specious”91, andthat “The reality is that it protects and promotes vested interests, and very few of the benefits from thegovernment-sponsored policy flow through to the Japanese populace.”92One part of the Iron Triangle is the leading party in Japan, the LDP (Liberal Democratic Party)and its president Shinzō Abe, who is also Japan’s prime minister since 2012. This party has close ties tothe  bureaucracy  in  Japan,  who  is  powerful  and  well  organized  and  likely  controls  information86 Ishii, An Alternative Explanation of Japan’s Whaling Diplomacy in the Post-Moratorium Era, p.6987 Ibid. 88 Ibid., p.69-7089 Ibid., p.7090 Kagawa-Fox, Japan’s Whaling Triangle, p.40391 Ibid., p.41292 Ibid.27distribution to the public and may also interfere with the drafting of laws. Some of the reasons that thebureaucracy in Japan is so powerful are that they historically have more legitimacy than politicians, areprotected from political interference, and have more influence over the press. So there is certainly atension  and  between  the  LDP politicians  and  bureaucrats,  however,  there  are  also  often  personalconnections and relationships involved. This combined with the influence of big businesses is whatconstantly reinforces the Iron Triangle and their continued working together.93 Keiko Hirata also criticizes these governmental agencies for two main reasons, first, “the lack ofcongruence between the antiwhaling norm and domestic cultural values, and [second] the hegemonisticcontrol over decision making on this issue”94 and concludes that this is the reason that anti-whalingadvocates, both nationally and internationally, have very little ability to influence Japanese whalingpolicy.  Morikawa  also  highlighted  that  concerning  the  whaling  issue  it  has  always  been  the  IronTriangle which made the rules and that “the involvement of the people in diplomacy has always beensecondary, a mere formality.”95Morikawa  further  states  that  “The  movement  to  win  back  lost  ground  [against  the  USspecifically] was spearheaded by a framework of pro-whaling forces including politicians, career civilservants,  whaling-related  businesses,  the  media,  and  academics,  with  the  help  of  public  relations,advertising, and educational activities appealing to nationalist sentiment. As a result […]  the Ministryof Foreign Affairs has been unable to control the arbitrary actions of the Fisheries Agency.”967.2.2. MediaAnother important role in the discourse around the whaling issue is the role of the Japanesemedia. The problem that arises when analyzing the way the Japanese think of whaling is that there93 Thank you to Professor Yves Tiberghien for his input and clarifications.94 Hirata, Why Japan Supports Whaling, p.14895 Morikawa, Whaling in Japan, p.7796 Ibid., p.5828seems  to  be  a  sort  of  echo  chamber  when it  comes  to  public  opinion.  Jun  Morikawa states  thatdomestically “strong criticism of or opposition to the Japanese government’s whaling policies has notsurfaced,  since  most  Japanese gain their  knowledge of  the whaling  issue from the  domestic  massmedia, which provide little critical information and often echo the government line”97 and that “Eventhose who criticize the Japanese government’s continued whaling have often fallen into the trap ofbeing unwitting pawns in this debate, which plays out only within the limited parameters of the sumoring  that  advocates  in  Japan  have  created.  This  allows  the  Japanese  government  to  continue  tosuccessfully control and manipulate the debate.”98 Furthermore, Morikawa critiques the media’s constant perpetuation of the pro-whaling statusquo and highlight four ways in which this is carried out: “pro-government reporting and disseminationof  information;  publicity  for  government-organized  pro-whaling events;  the  virtual  absence  of  anyinvestigative reporting on the whaling issue; and limited or slanted reporting of the activities of anti-whaling organizations,  often described by the Fisheries Agency and the ICR [Institute of CetaceanResearch] as “ecoterrorists”. The media repeatedly report this government claim without independentanalysis and thus help propagate and validate this opinion among the public.”997.3. Fisheries AgencyMorikawa also explained that “as far as Japan’s whaling diplomacy is concerned, it is the JapanFisheries Agency, not MOFA [Ministry of Foreign Affairs], that has taken the initiative and become themain actor, for several reasons.”100 Firstly, “the Japanese bureaucratic world has generally consideredthe  whaling issue to  be a  part  of  fishery diplomacy,”101 and  secondly,  because  “it  is  the Fisheries97 Morikawa, Whaling in Japan, p.298 Ibid., p.499 Ibid., p.71-72100 Ibid., p.6101 Ibid.29Agency, not the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, that has the ability to allocate the necessary resources forthe three main goals of fishery diplomacy: a secure and stable supply of marine resources, access torich fishing grounds, and the maintenance and development of Japan’s fishing industry. In order toaccomplish  these  goals,  various  political  and  diplomatic  resources  are  needed.  These  includeprofessional knowledge, extensive manpower and a substantial network with resource-rich countriesand  relevant  industries.  Information-gathering  and  analytical  ability  are  also  required  for  policyformation and a strong organizational structure for back-up, not to mention the experience and know-how to conduct tough international negotiations.”102And the third reason for the Agency’s predominance “is that the whaling issue has becomehighly politicized and has been presented as if it  symbolizes Japan’s national interests and culturaltraditions. In other words, the whaling issue has been presented to the public by the Fisheries Agency-centered group as if it is a matter of national pride while, ironically, it is an issue that has done much totarnish Japan’s image and prestige around the world.”103Morikawa explains that after the anti-whaling sentiment took off in the 1970s/80s “the Japanesegovernment and the Fisheries Agency were actively developing a political strategy in arenas inside andoutside Japan to promote an environment supportive of the preservation and promotion of whaling.”104The Fisheries Agency’s continued pro-whaling stance and support of the whaling industry “isachieved through budget allocations,  administrative guidance and the exercise of the right to grantpermits and licenses, as well as the  amakudari hiring of career civil servants by extra-governmentalbodies  in  the  fisheries  and  whaling  industries.”105 Amakudari  hiring  is  the  practice  of  givingemployment to senior government officials in the private sector. “This longstanding and systematicamakudari migration to industry organizations means that the Fisheries Agency has built a complex102 Morikawa, Whaling in Japan, p.6103 Ibid.104 Ibid., p.27-28105 Ibid., p.6630network of intimate and intricate relationship with extra-governmental and industry bodies.”106 Andbecause of this work migration it is important to keep the whaling industry alive, in order to make post-retirement positions available for senior government officials. Morikawa explains that “these organizations are one big ‘family’ centered around the FisheriesAgency. The members communicate closely, consulting with one another and facing problems togetherfor the sake of stability and prosperity of the ‘family.’ At the centre of their  activities is the dailycommunication and support between currently serving bureaucrats and their former colleagues whohave been hired in amakudari positions.”107106 Morikawa, Whaling in Japan, p.66107 Ibid.31Chapter 8: International CriticismAfter exploring the aforementioned reasons for Japan’s withdrawal and the general internationalopinion on the whaling issue it is interesting that Japan is willing to face the backlash that their exit hascaused.  Their  withdrawal  may have  even come as  a  surprise  to  a  few scholars,  among those  JunMorikawa. In his book from 2009 he stated that the option of Japan withdrawing from the IWC andresuming commercial whaling seems unlikely, because while it would „temporarily satisfy nationalisticsentiments, the political, diplomatic and economic costs and risks would be very high by comparisonwith the expected benefits. […] If this policy were actually introduced, there would very probably be anegative impact in a wide variety of fields,  and quite likely an international movement to boycottJapanese products would be encouraged.”108However, it seems that maintaining the power dynamics and the amakudari hiring are indeed thedriving factors here, since the economic profits from selling whale meat are minuscule and would notoutweigh the negative consequences from the withdrawal on the international level. Furthermore, it canalso be speculated that Japan as a now global superpower is figuratively – and literally –  testing thewaters; testing how far they can push other states (like IWC member states) and force trough their ownwill against others wishes, and testing how much influence they can exert concerning certain issues. So this is not only an issue of national political power dynamics but also international ones aswell. And at the end of the day, as explained in Chapter 6, they have enough supposed justifications,albeit somewhat dubious one at times, to argue their case to the IWC, and the international communityin general. 108 Morikawa, Whaling in Japan, p.12332Chapter 9: ConclusionIs is difficult to pinpoint the exact reason(s) as to why Japan decided to exit the InternationalWhaling Commission and resume commercial whaling. This behavior begs the question of why thebacklash  that  they  have  received and  will  continue  to  receive  is  worth  it  for  them.  While  this  iscertainly a diplomatic setback for them in the international community, it is clear that they are willingto take this hit to continue whaling, at least for now.Their exit may be explained by a combination of the aforementioned arguments, since they havebeen used by Japan for decades. It does seem though that the driving forces here are, in fact, the IronTriangle’s internal power dynamics, specifically the practice of amakudari hiring, as well as the pushback against perceived Western imperialism. Furthermore, it is important to highlight again the impactthat the nationalist rhetoric potentially has on the Japanese population and the constant effort by theIron Triangle to stifle any criticism against their whaling policies and to present the Japanese as amonolithic group that all have the same stance on this issue.And since the resolutions of the IWC are non-binding it needs to be observed what Japan doesnext, and how their continued whaling will affect the population of whales, as well as the environmentto answer the questions that now arise. Like if the effects of whaling are dramatized by the internationalcommunity and non-governmental organizations? Is whaling resumed for internal political reasons ordoes the general population really care as much about continuing whaling as the Japanese governmentclaims?Furthermore, it needs to be evaluated what the possibility of Japan to re-enter the IWC is, andwhat their demands would be in order to actively participate again. Hopefully, there will be steps takento improve the ineffectiveness and the apparent gridlock in the International Whaling Commission. AsKeiko Hirata explained, “effective approaches will rely on the leadership of Japanese groups that candirectly address the cultural issues involved and seek allies among politicians […] to challenge the33bureaucracy-led decision-making system. [Furthermore], the battle to end Japanese support for whalingwill  be  long-term,  but  by  sensitively  addressing  the  […]  myths  of  whaling  prevalent  among  theJapanese people and patiently persuading legislators of the value of whale conservation and protection,Japanese and international antiwhaling groups may eventually prevail.”109109 Hirata, Why Japan Supports Whaling, p.14934Bibliography• Bestor, Theodore (2004): Tsukiji. The fish market at the center of the world. Berkeley: Univ. ofCalifornia Press (California studies in food and culture, 11).• Butler-Stroud, Christopher (2016): What Drives Japanese Whaling Policy? In: Frontiers MarineScience 3.• Coady, David; Brendan Gogarty; Jeffrey McGee (2017): Scientific whaling and how philosophyof science can help break the international deadlock. In:  Australian Journal of InternationalAffairs 72 (1), S. 49–67. • Epstein,  Charlotte  (2008):  The power of  words  in  international  relations.  Birth of  an anti-whaling discourse. Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press (Politics, science, and the environment).• Goodman,  Dan  (2010):  Japan's  Research  Whaling  Is  Not  Unlawful  and  Does  Not  ViolateCITES Trade Rules. In: Journal of International Wildlife Law & Policy 13 (2), S. 176–182. • Flowers, Petrice R. (2008): Shaping State Identity. International Law and Whaling in Japan. In:Pacific Focus 23 (1), S. 97–120. • Gales,  Nick;  Russell  Leaper;  Vassili  Papastavrou  (2008):  Is  Japan's  whaling  humane? In:Marine Policy 32 (3), S. 408–412. • Hirata, Keiko (2007): Why Japan Supports Whaling. In: Journal of International Wildlife Law& Policy 8 (2-3), S. 129–149.• Hoey,  Laura  (2017):  The Battle  Over  Scientific  Whaling:  A New Proposal  to  Stop Japan’sLethal  Research  and  Reform  the  International  Whaling  Commission,  William  &  MaryEnvironmental Law & Policy Rev. 435. • Hurd,  Ian.  Almost  Saving  Whales:  The  Ambiguity  of  Success  at  the  International  WhalingCommission, Ethics & International Affairs 26 (1) (2012): 103–112. • International  Convention  for  the  Regulation  of  Whaling  (1946).  Retrieved  from<https://iwc.int/convention> Accessed 30.09.2019.• Ishii, Atsushi; Ayako Okubo (2007): An Alternative Explanation of Japan’s Whaling Diplomacyin the Post-Moratorium Era. In: Journal of International Wildlife Law & Policy 10 (1), S. 55–87. • Kagawa-Fox,  Midori  (2009):  Japan's  Whaling  Triangle  –  The  Power  Behind  the  WhalingPolicy. In: Japanese Studies 29 (3), S. 401–414. 35• Kalland, Arne; Moeran, Brian (2011):  Japanese whaling. End of an era? London, New York:Routledge (Routledge library editions Japan, v. 76).• Komatsu, Masayuki; Misaki, Shigeko (2003): Whales and the Japanese. How we have come tolive in harmony with the bounty of the sea. Tokyo, Japan: Institute of Cetacean Research.• Makino, Mitsutaku (2011): Fisheries management in Japan. Its institutional features and casestudies. Dordrecht: Springer.• Morell, Virginia (2007):  Marine biology. Killing whales for science? In: Science (New York,N.Y.) 316 (5824), S. 532–534. • Morikawa, Jun (2009): Whaling in Japan. Power, politics, and diplomacy. London: Hurst andCompany.• National Post (Online), Toronto: Postmedia Network Inc. Dec 26, 2018. • Nippon.com (04.10.2019): <https://www.nippon.com/en/news/yjj2019100401069/japanese-mother-boat-returns-after-restarted-commercial-whaling.html>Accessed 30.10.2019. • Normile, Dennis (2019): Japan's exit from whaling group may benefit whales. In: Science (NewYork, N.Y.) 363 (6423), S. 110–111. • Papastavrou,  Vassili;  Patrick  Ramage  (2010):  Commercial  Whaling  by  Another  Name.  TheIllegality of Japan's Scientific Whaling. Response to Dan Goodman. In: Journal of InternationalWildlife Law & Policy 13 (2), S. 183–187. • Parsons, E. C. M.; Naomi Rose.; Claire Bass; Clare Perry; Mark Simmonds (2006): It's not justpoor  science  –  Japan's  “scientific”  whaling  may  be  a  human  health  risk  too .  In:  Marinepollution bulletin 52 (9), S. 1118–1120. • Strand, Jonathan; John Tuman (2012):  Foreign Aid and Voting Behavior in an InternationalOrganization.  The  Case  of  Japan  and  the  International  Whaling  Commission. In:  ForeignPolicy Analysis 8 (4), S. 409–430.• Wheen,  Nicola  (2016):  23.  International  Whaling  Commission  (IWC). In:  Yearbook  ofInternational Environmental Law 27, S. 540–547.• Wright,  Andrew;  Mark  Simmonds;  Barbara  Galletti  Vernazzani  (2016):  The  InternationalWhaling Commission—Beyond Whaling. In: Front. Mar. Sci. 3, S. 158.36

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