Denmark does nothing to stop whale massacre in the country


This week, the Faroe Islands in the North Atlantic witnessed the latest grindadrap, or grind, as these hunts are called.
A pod of whales was sighted off the islands and 25 boats set out in pursuit. In the course of two hours, the men herded the whales inshore and eventually caused something called — in a euphemism a politician would envy — an ‘assisted stranding’.
There, on Hvannasund Beach, the Faroese were waiting with their weapons. Of the 200 whales in the pod, 120 were killed. Tossing and turning in a scarlet sea, the dozens of pilot whales cannot escape the knife blows raining down. Driven into the shallows, where they are forced to bathe in the blood of their relatives and companions, their distress is palpable as hunters hack at their smooth sides.
Once they are dead — or, at least, dying — hooks and ropes haul their bodies ashore, where crowds of people, many of them children, have gathered to watch this bloodthirsty spectacle.
Tragically, the whales, the victims of this brutal human behaviour, are here as a result of their innate sense of loyalty. Such is their devotion to their extended family that if one member becomes stranded on land, the rest of the pod will remain with the stricken animal, even if they endanger themselves.
Over the past three centuries, the Faroese have taken an average of 838 pilot whales each year, according to a 2012 study. The Faroese have hunted the long-finned pilot whales in a tradition known as the Grindadrap for as long as anyone can remember. The earliest mention of Grindardrap is in a Faroese book of law from 1298. It’s a non-commercial whale hunt organized by the community, it starts in spring, usually in May and occurs occasionally over the summer months, when the pods of pilot whale pass the islands. The hunt provides a source of local traditional food.
The debate about the pilot whale hunt in the Faroe Islands is unlikely to be solved this summer. Many Faroese consider the whale meat an important part of their food culture and history. Animal rights groups and protesters condemn the harvest as being cruel and unnecessary.
But the Faroese — who are semi-autonomous from Denmark — get upset when outsiders criticise them. ‘Whaling is a natural part of Faroese life and pilot whale meat and blubber are a cherished supplement to households across the islands,’ said a spokesman for the Faroes, Pall Nolsoe.
It is a long tradition, certainly, but longevity does not excuse brutality. The pilot whale hunt in the Faroe Islands has an understandable bad reputation. The images from the hunt are gruesome and the sea turns read with the blood of the whales. While in the olden days the hunt was an essential source of food for the Faroese, in present days, the killings are more about tradition and a traditional way of life, for which those wild animals are killed. The hunt is clearly no longer a necessity for the islanders, but there are also some unfair misconceptions regarding the killings.
One of them being that the pilot whale is an endangered species, the hunt is illegal and the animal is gauchely hacked to death. Looking at the imagery of the killings it really looks like a bloodbath. When the pods of pilot whale pass by the Faroe Islands they are herded toward a certified shore by boats. They are then gatherd in shallow waters and killed with a spinal lance, which should sever the spinal cord of the animal and cut off blood supply to the brain, so the animal looses consciousness and dies within seconds, if its done right – the hunters need a special license to be a part of the hunt.
Photographs in the media of the pilot whale drive display a red sea soaked in blood with the bodies of dead pilot whales. These images cause outrage worldwide. Opponents argue that the whale drive is cruel and unnecessary.

Environmental campaigners on Wednesday urged the EU to take action against Denmark, accusing officials there of facilitating the traditional annual hunt of pilot whales in the Faroe Islands.
"It is forbidden to kill whales and dolphins in Europe," said Geert Vons, director of the activist group Sea Shepherd Netherlands.
"By supporting the Faroe Islands in the killing of pilot whales and other cetaceans, Denmark facilitates the slaughter and fails to fulfil its EU obligations."
It has called on Brussels to launch so-called "infringement proceedings" against member state Denmark, claiming to have "evidence proving that Danish officials from the police, navy, and customs have been facilitating and even actively participating" in the hunt.
The Faroe Islands, an autonomous territory of nearly 50,000 inhabitants in the North Atlantic, chose to remain outside the European Union when Denmark joined in 1973. They are heavily dependent on fishing —mainly herring and mackerel—which together with fish farming accounts for 98 percent of its goods exports.
Denmark, a country known for human rights and democracy movementsand projects over the world, has done nothing to stop this massacre. Instead, every single member of the Danish Parliament supports the slaughter. Denmark could do a great deal to stop it, if they really wanted to including not interfering with the opposition to whale killing with their police and military.
This is not just a Faroese obscenity. It is also a Danish crime because Denmark is brazenly ignoring European law with their support of an activity that is in violation of European law./.

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All comments [ 10 ]

John Smith 22/6/17 22:25

Pilot whaling is illegal. It is illegal in Europe, it’s illegal in Denmark, therefore it is illegal in the Faroe Islands.

Love Peace 22/6/17 22:25

Denmark claims it is for the Faroe Islands to decide whether to stop whaling but this is not true.

Gentle Moon 22/6/17 22:30

They kill a wild endangered species like whales, and no one voices for criticism, while Vietnamese just kill pig which they raise by their own hands and they are called barbarous. So hypocrite!

MaskOf Zero 22/6/17 22:31

Environmental activists are urging the European Commission to take action against Denmark, accusing the country's officials of facilitating the slaughter of pilot whales and other marine mammals in the Faroe Islands.

LawrenceSamuels 22/6/17 22:48

The hunt, known as the grindadrap, is a chaotic and gruesome sight. The event is observed by scores of children, and filming locals – as attested to by photos that have appeared in Faroese newspaper Nordlysid.

Only Solidar 22/6/17 22:49

So humane and civilized for the Western nation!

Jane smartnic 22/6/17 22:51

Danish Member of Parliament Ramus Jarlov equates the slaughter to killing pigs and chickens. (The Danes kill millions of pigs and tens of millions of chickens). So because HE eats pork and chicken that makes us hypocrites for opposing the Grind. The logic is absurd.

yobro yobro 22/6/17 22:52

Stop dreaming about Western civilization! They are just like us.

Pack Cassiopian 22/6/17 22:53

Or even worse yobro yobro. The scene is so horrible!

Deck Hero14 22/6/17 22:54

Without Denmark this slaughter would not be tolerated and could easily be shut down. Denmark enables the killers and thus it is Denmark’s responsibility.

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