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Ady Gil sinks, Sea Shepherd pursuing Whaling Fleet

by Takver - Australia Indymedia
Ady Gil has now sunk according to Paul Watson interviewed on ABC morning radio. All diesel and oil, and much of the electronics was salvaged. No pollution will occur as a result of the sinking.
The Bob Barker attempted to tow the stricken vessel to the French Antarctic research station Dumont Durville, but the Ady Gil continued taking on water into its main hull, and has now sunk. The Bob Barker is within sight of two harpoon vessels, likely left to keep track of them.

The Ady Gil suffered catastrophic damage when it was rammed by the Japanese whaling vessel Shonan Maru 2. The 6 crew were all rescued by the second Sea Shepherd vessel in the area, the Bob Baker. Crewman Simeon Houtman, of Auckland, received broken ribs in the ramming.

Peter Bethune, New Zealand skipper of the Ady Gil said yesterday "They basically drove straight over the top of us and there was nothing we could do. We were all on top of the vessel except for one of the crew members who was inside. When they were about 50 metres away they suddenly veered to starboard and cut off the front three or four metres of my boat and sheared it in half. If anyone was in the forward sleeping quarters they would be dead."

According to Paul Watson "The Ady Gil was stationary at the time, they were waiting for the Shonan Maru to pass. And the Shonan Maru turned and rammed into them."

Sea Shepherd is intent on pursuing the whaling fleet and disrupting whaling to stop their illegal activities through nonviolent action, according to Paul Watson. No whaling yesterday, and none will happen today.

"We will be using nonviolent tactics to do everything we can to harass, interfere and shutdown their illegal operations. This is our 6th year down here. And in those six years we have not broken any laws, we have not been charged with any violations, we've not been sued, and we've not injured anybody. But we have been effective. We have cut their quotas in half for the last 4 years and we intend to make that happen again." Paul Watson told the ABC.

Paul Watson said that the Ady Gil can't be insured for an act of war. The Ady Gil was "targeted and destroyed by a hostile vessel."

Investigations into the ramming have been launched by New Zealand, Australia and Japan. Ady Gil was a registered New Zealand vessel where the primary investigation will take place by Maritime New Zealand investigaters. High level talks took place between the New Zealand Government and Japan's New Zealand Embassy. An ABC news report alledges that at the Wellington meeting, Japan said it regarded the incident as "regrettable" but a "low-key event".

Japan's chief cabinet secretary Hirofumi Hirano was quoted by the Kyodo news agency as saying a complaint had been lodged with the New Zealand government "in a stern manner". But the New Zealand Government has denied any stern complaint has been received from Japan.

As the collision occured inside Australia's nominal search and rescue zone, the Acting Australian Prime Minister Julia Guillard has ordered the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) to conduct an investigation and has committed to making the results public. Both Whalers and conservationists have requested Australia to send a vessel to the area, but Julia Guillard ruled out sending a boat to monitor the situation in Antarctic waters at this stage.

Guillard watched videos of the ramming and said "It is clear emotions are running high and lives are at risk," she said. "Having watched the video it deeply concerns me. It seems miraculous that lives were not lost."

ABC radio, Friday 8/01/2010, 07:15 - Sea Shepherd confirms its high-tech anti-whaling boat the Ady Gil has sunk, after being hit by a Japanese 'security ship' ... (audio) (4.10)
Still photo from ICR video
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by Brent Leslie
The whalers here are clearly in the wrong and have tried to cover their tracks by creating a selectively edited video for youtube

I saw the original version of this video (before it was removed and this version put up) which clearly shows the whaling boat turning into the Ady Gil. The Japanese have taken the original and changed it now to make it look more like the Ady Gils fault. It most certainly was not.

If you think I sound like some conspiracy theorist, look at around the 5 second mark in the video, where the video is suddenly zoomed in. This did not happen in the original. The video become MORE still than it was when it was zoomed out. If you have used a video camera before, you will realise the picture becomes a lot bumpier if you zoom while moving. Then, at around the 18 second mark, just as the boat turns in towards the Ady Gil, the video is zoomed back which has the affect of hiding the sudden course change. I can't believe the Japanese have tampered with the evidence to such a degree.

If you check out this youtube video, taken from a boat in front, you can clearly see the course change:

See for yourself.

Besides, the Ady Gil was on the Starboard side so had right of way. Clearly the fault of the whalers who deliberately rammed the Ady Gil.
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