'Heroes' of Discovery Channel Show Use Lasers on Japanese Whalers

The Discovery Channel program "Whale Wars" portrays the radical activists of the left-wing Sea Shepherd Conservation Society as heroes going up against Japanese whaling ships, instead of the pirate-like harassers they really are.

According to Ecorazzi.com, a self-proclaimed "green" gossip site, the group revealed it was using a "photonic disruptor" against the whaling crew. According to WickedLasers.com says that particular laser has been featured on another Discovery Channel program - "Future Weapons" - and it can "temporarily overwhelm a threat's visual senses."

Both Discovery and Ecorazzi paint the Sea Shepherd crew as heroes in the fight against evil whalers rather than expose the groups' extremist viewpoints. The "Whale Wars" Web page describes them as the only group standing between "a 750-ton whale-killing machine and its prey. Whale Wars follows the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society as they seek to end Japanese whaling once and for all."

But on the very same page are indications, such as the pirate logo on the Deleted Scenes button and on the caps worn by the crew, that the eco-activists are up to something less benign.

Paul Watson, founder of the Sea Shepherd Society, has publicly said mankind is a "virus" and we need to "re-wild the planet." In a May 4, 2007 editorial, Watson said "We are killing our host the planet Earth" and refused to apologize for having called human beings the "AIDS of the Earth."

He called for a population reduction to less than 1 billion people. The world population is nearly 6.8 billion as of Dec. 23, 2009. Watson also called for humans to return to primitive lifestyles. "We need to stop flying, stop driving cars, and jetting around on marine recreational vehicles. The Mennonites survive without cars and so can the rest of us."

As for the "Whale Wars," there is already a worldwide moratorium on commercial whaling, but Japan continues to run a scientific whaling program. In February 2009, the Los Angeles Times wrote about a "bitter face-off" in Japan over whaling between Greenpeace activists and the Japanese government.

"These men have been painted as heroes," Joji Morishita said on behalf of the Japanese government. According to that article, 100 whales are "culled by Japan each winter." Norway and Iceland also "cull a limited number."

Julia A. Seymour
Julia A. Seymour
Julia A. Seymour is the Assistant Managing Editor for the MRC's Business and Media Institute.