Friday, February 26, 2010

COSTA CRUISE ACCIDENT



SMALL INFORMATIONAL NOTE: March 01, 2010.
When the international media reported this incident this vessel was described as a 55 tonne ship, much to the amusement of seafarers. This is an example once again of rushing to report without proper research and editing. The correct tonnages of MS Costa Europa is 42,092 GRT (Gross registered tons) and 5157 DWT (Deadweight tons). A quick visit to 'Google' would have given you this data. Media getting there first is fine but get it right !!
The News Media is reporting that the MS Costa Europa hit the pier at Sharm el-Sheik Egypt at 0445 this morning while berthing. At the time very high winds and rough seas were reported. Tragically three crewmembers are reported killed, in addition four passengers and other crewmembers had to go to hospital for treatment as a result of injuries.

The vessel was arriving at the Egyptian resort from Dubai bound for Italy. All 1400 passengers were removed from the vessel to hotels and flights are being arranged to return them to their home nations.

The MS Costa Europa has a large gash on its starboard side and damage control by crew is underway. The vessel is operated by Italian based Costa Cruises a division of the Carnival Group, Miami Florida.

Good Watch.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

IT WASN'T ME

UPDATE: February 26, 2010

The SS-PG are now in full retreat having lost out in tactics with the Japanese Whaling Fleet. In spite of boldly stating just earlier this week that they had fuel to remain with the fleet until the end of the season.

The MS Steve Irwin is already bound for Hobart Tasmania and 'Wats-his-name' announces today that the no Flag State vessel MS Bob Barker also has fuel problems and is joining them bound for Hobart. This year has been an unmitigated disaster for the Sea Shepherd Pirate Group with an unaccomplished mission, as the Japanese are now free to hunt at will, useless tactics, a prisoner taken and bound for the Japanese Maritime Court. However as yet both the SS-PG vessels are not safe in their Australian Sanctuary so the drama may not be over.


UPDATE: February 25, 2010

Received six (6) fascinating and long comments this morning, all clearly from Sea Shepherd supporters, tracked from an address in Hayward California but it had bounced around so who knows or cares really. Unfortunately they did not have the courage to sign their opinions so we could not publish them. Pity really because they raised some excellent points to debate even if their history and logic is a little confused. Please try again with your signature - do not be afraid. If you read the header it explains the NAUTICAL LOG policy regarding comment publication. So greetings from "The Old Fool" the Old is true, the Fool debatable and have a great day !!

The SS-PG Press Release this morning states that the MS Steve Irwin is planning to refuel in Hobart Tasmania and then prepare to go to the Mediterranean to prevent further Bluefin tuna fishing by European and North African fisherman. Now THAT will really be something to watch. Of course first of all they have to get there and probably not by the Suez Canal. Should be an interesting voyage if and when it ever occurs.


It is getting really hard to follow the SS-PG Press Releases that come into NAUTICAL LOG each time they are published. The latest is today, a classic but lets begin at the beginning. From yesterday February 23, 2010 a quote from the confused 'Wats-his-name' rant stated "African poachers are jailed or shot. Japanese poachers do whatever they like". They pretty much do indeed and so do the Sea Shepherd Pirate Group thanks to the wimpy maritime authorities with the laudable exception of the West African nation of Togo.

Apparently as a result of remarks attributed to a Mr. Ady Gil the impression has gone out that SS-PG have firearms. Well 'Wats-his-name' did mention shooting poachers in yesterdays Press Release so he has only himself to blame. That of course is never his style, he is the romantic sea pirate 'robin hood' type, its the other fellow that causes all the troubles. Also there are the lethal hunting arrows found floating after the ramming and sinking of the DFC Ady Gil. Now Mr. Ady Gil is a Hollywood type who seems to largely live in a left-wing world or one that is of his own making. He is the one who put up the money for the purchase of the strange craft that lost the ramming match with the MS "Shonan Maru #2". As a result of further (stupidity) - inappropriate behaviour - her operator a Mr. Peter Bethune of New Zealand is detained aboard the winner and bound for Japanese Maritime Court. Now in spite of the generosity of Mr. Ady Gil 'Wats-his-name' as turned against him and blames the gentleman for all this shooting talk - it wasn't me. Once again an example of he 'Wats-his-name' being unable to keep his house in order. One wonders what will happen with Mr. Bob Barker of TV fame now that his named for ship MS Bob Barker is a stateless vessel loose on the worlds oceans.

In the main paragraph of this mornings SS-PG Press Release bumpf 'Wats-his-name' states, and we quote "but we have never and will never, injure a human being". Of course this is not entirely true as those who watched "Whale Wars" will recall several crewmembers of MS Steve Irwin getting severely hurt, smashed faces, concussions, crushed hands and one in grave danger of being paralysed from the waist down. While 'Wats-his-name' screamed and complained from the safety of the Bridge before storming off to his cabin. Then there are the Japanese crewmembers of the whaling fleet bombarded with acid and lately lasers which can cause eye damage and yes in return they have used sonic devices which are dangerous. How about all the incidents of ramming between these vessels over the years which certainly must have caused injuries. So do not tell the world that you have never injured a human being.

Good Watch.

Monday, February 22, 2010

JUST SAY THANKS

Rescue frigate of the Brazilian Navy

Flag of Barbados


As has been widely reported in the world's newspapers and nautical blogs the SF Concordia of Barbados Flag State sank several hundred miles off the coast of Brazil last week. There is some confusion about the actual day, some say Wednesday, some say Thursday and therein lies the problem. The Brazilian Naval authorities have been placed in the position, largely by the reporting of Associated Press, of having to defend search efforts for the shipwreck. This is the same Brazilian Navy which expanded such gallant efforts in search and recovery after the Air France crash at sea between Brazil and Africa.

In the Associated Press Release on my desk the report by one Tales Azzoni contains some points, in the opinion of NAUTICAL LOG, worth mentioning. The Brazilian Navy is defending its response to a shipwreck that left dozens of teenage students from around the world adrift on the ocean for two nights. The Navy deployed a search aircraft about 19 hours after a distress signal was received from the SV Concordia. This is in line with standard Brazilian Navy procedure an official has stated. This does seem a rather long time but that is their stated procedure. All 48 students and 16 crewmembers were safely rescued by merchants ships and transferred to the port of Rio de Janeiro Brazil under the responsibility of the Brazilian Navy.

The Canadian based Class Afloat has arranged flights and the students were expected to begin flying home late Sunday. Nigel McCarthy, President and CEO of West Island College International, Lunenburg, Nova Scotia which operates Class Afloat expressed concern that the students were left adrift in life rafts for so long before being rescued.

Now NAUTICAL LOG wonders at this disingenuous statement it is after all the clear responsibility of his school ship and its CAPT. William Curry to prevent the incident in the first place. By preparing a Passage Plan that considers the weather conditions and since he seems a knowledgeable Master from his statements, the possibility of 'microbursts' from those conditions. Mr. Nigel McCarthy comes across as self-centered and self-serving. It is also stated that the London UK based Barbados Maritime Ship Registry, which works on behalf of the Barbados Government, will conduct an Investigation as Flag State. Brazil and its Navy will have authority in this Investigation as Port State and one hopes exercises it to the fullest extend.

Not leaving things alone we also have a report of a statement from the Canadian Maritime Forces Atlantic public affairs officer Navy Lt. Edward Stansfield who said the Joint Rescue Co-ordination Centre in Halifax would have sent planes immediately after receiving a distress signal from ships offshore. Well good for them and basically that is actually what the Brazilian Navy did. It is neither Canadian Navy Lt. Stansfield's position or duty to comment on the operating procedures of the Brazilian Navy. Countries have different procedures, equipment, training and Maritime Laws. PAO Navy Lt. Stansfield is away out of line and must have attended the same diplomatic school as Australian FM Stephen Smith (see previous Post). Also on being reviewed Standard Operating Procedures can be changed to be more effective, the Canadian Armed Forces certainly have - thankfully for those of us who have had to deal with them.

So in conclusion all concerned have been rather superior, high-handed and self-oriented in dealing with this incident dumped in Brazil's lap. All you had to do was - just say thanks.

Good Watch.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

AUSTRALIAN DIPLOMACY

Australian Foreign Minister Stephen Smith

The Japanese may not like to discuss confrontational issues face to face but this does not bother those macho Aussies one bit. Not having done anything besides aide, abet, and shelter the Sea Shepherd Pirate Group for years they now start a fight during a diplomatic visit.

The Japanese Foreign Minister Katsuya Okada is currently visiting Australia and had meetings with the Prime Minister Kevin Rudd who immediately told him that Japan had until November to stop hunting whales in the Antarctic. The 2009/2010 Season ends in about three weeks so that was handy!! With that Australian diplomatic greeting the Japanese FM went on to meet his counterpart Australian Foreign Minister Stephen Smith in Perth Western Australia. Now Perth just happens to be the current Port State base of the SS-PG - yes indeed - again Australian tact and style at work.

Super-macho Steve threatens to take Japan to the International Court of Justice if it does not stop whale hunting. This is "unfortunate" says Japanese FM Katsuya Okada. Indeed it is, it is also a legal act of war because in the diplomatic world one does not "threaten" one "advises" or "informs". Old Steve, who has protected the SS-PG and done absolutely nothing, as Port State, to control their nautical thuggery now threatens Japan by passing the buck to a non-Australian Court - 'dutch courage' from the ANZACS ?

With their nation having been threatened this now leaves the Japanese Whaling Fleet free to re-enter the Australian EEZ and continue hunting. It is also a 'finger' gesture from Japan to Australia 'if you want a fight mate try this' and the threat also virtually prevents the Australian Navy being sent to enforce the Law. If that now occurs it is 'gunboat diplomacy' and Japan is in an international legal position to defend itself. To refer to history this is exactly how World War 1 started as a result of the Incident at Sarajevo.

One wonders at Steve's diplomacy skills or rather lack thereof, it would seem for starters that he go back to "Foreign Minister 101" and take it from there.

Good Watch.

Friday, February 19, 2010

WHALING STOPPED ?

FINALLY A WORD: February 23, 2010.

In a Press Release consisting of a confused rant 'Wats-his-name' has mentioned the fact that Togo has stripped MS Bob Barker of its flag. Also mentioned is the fact that the MS Steve Irwin is returning to Hobart Tasmania due to 'being down to its last reserves of fuel'. This just days after stating that both vessels had fuel to remain with the Japanese Whaling Fleet 'well into March' until the end of the season. The indications are that 'Wats-his-name' really does not know what is going on aboard his ships, cannot read fuel tank soundings correctly or a combination of both. It may be that having told so many conflicting stories that he now has trouble keep track of them.

In view of the Australian Government threatening the Japanese Government it must be hoped that they detain the MS Steve Irwin in Hobart at least until the whaling season ends. On the Japanese side they would be well within maritime law rights to arrest the MS Steve Irwin, outside Australian Territorial Waters. This could be effected on her way to Hobart or if she should sail from Hobart after refuelling. They could then remove her Captain and Officers to Japan to stand trial along with Bethune. This should recognize 'THE YEAR OF THE SEAFARER 2010' nicely for the International Maritime Organization (IMO) since they have not even acknowledged the deflagging by Togo.

FACING FACTS: 0800 February 23, 2010.

Interestingly to date the Sea Shepherd Pirate Group has not acknowledged the fact that TOGO has deflagged their 'pirate ship' MS Bob Barker. As usual 'Wats-his-name' goes yo-ho-ho merrily on in a fog of his own. By not facing the real world he actually avoids accomplishing something really constructive to stop the whale slaughter. Of course if that happened his self-romantic world would cease to exist.


CONFIRMATION: 1145 February 21, 2010.

In an ICR Press Release the Japanese Government confirms that the SS-PG vessel MS Bob Barker is indeed flagless. She has been deflagged by the West African nation of Togo. There has been no comment from SS-PG at this time.

*************************************************************************************
This morning the SS-PG Media Release on my desk was somewhat better to read. Like most other people around the world NAUTICAL LOG is quite firmly against whaling in any form in this the 21st. Century. Where Sea Shepherds have gone "wrong" - in our opinion - is in its methods, the violence and nautical thuggery have been obscene. If the SS-PG can prevent further whaling during the next three weeks the season will be closed and a severe economic impact made to the Fleet.

In the last couple of weeks however there seems to be a slight toning down of the violence. They did throw plastic 'crocodile dundees' - wonder if those are biodegradable. What the heck it gets pretty boring down there in the Southern Ocean and if people want to throw $50 dollar toys in the sea so be it. No worries mate!

The present tactics of following the Japanese whaling fleet and preventing it from killing whales is excellent. In turn the Japanese seem to be remaining outside the Australian EEZ as they are required to do by both the Australian Federal Court and International Maritime Law. This is most likely a diplomatic step as Japanese Foreign Minister Katsuya Okada is visiting Australia. The timing of the Fleet's current navigational position means that a very touchy subject can be smoothly avoided. Japanese culture loves to avoid confrontational issues in face-to-face meetings so that should work out nicely from the Katsuya Okada point of view.

The real issue will be what will happen when the Foreign Minister's visit is over, will the Fleet return inside the Australian EEZ. In Japanese culture, this would be a mark of contempt and grave disrespect to Australia. Samurai's would have instantly gone to war in such a case and at present Japan is under serious pressure due to the behaviour of the Toyota Group's handling of its various car problems.

Finally it is reported that the MS Shonan Maru #2 has been detached from the Fleet and is returning to Japan. Detained aboard her is the New Zealander Peter Bethune who will now face the Japanese Court as a result of his pointless boarding of that vessel underway at sea. A possible punishment for that action is three years confined to a Japanese prison. That should be a very sobering experience consisting of basically solitary confinement with a very strict regime.

UPDATE: 1700 February 19, 2010

It appears that the West African nation of Togo has displayed more responsibility than the traditional maritime nation of The Netherlands as it has apparently deflagged the SS-PG vessel MS Bob Barker. This leaves that vessel stateless under maritime law, it will be interesting to see if a nation and port accepts her.


In fact far from disciplining SS-PG The Netherlands offers them financial support. The Dutch National Postcode Lottery just issued a cheque for 1 million Euros to the Sea Shepherd Pirate Group to help sustain it. The Dutch Parliament has collapsed over its troops being in Afghanistan and the Cabinet has presented its resignation to HM Queen Beatrix.

'Potheadlijke' confusion in the swamp!

Good Watch.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

IMPORTANCE OF TRAINING

Those of you who read NAUTICAL LOG know that great importance is placed on safety at sea and this in turn comes from training. It is my opinion that each and every seafarer should hold a license indicating this training has been completed. One of the nautical Blogs that we follow and indeed read each day is BITTEREND hosted by Captain Richard Rodriguez. Captain RR is a well known and excellent instructor resident in the Pacific Northwest. Also he is well known to many of you from his service as a Vessel Assist Captain during the Spring and Summer boating seasons from Friday Harbor WA. The courses he teaches lead to a full United States Coast Guard (USCG) license. There is another excellent source of training and licensing and these are the State Safe Boating Certificates. Putting ones money where ones mouth is NAUTICAL LOG held a USCG Master and also a State of Florida Safe Boaters Certificate.

When NAUTICAL LOG visited the 'Miami International Boat Show' last weekend we had the opportunity to see all the latest USCG and State of Florida maritime reference publications. When we did the State of Florida 'Safe Boating Certificate' in 1999 the booklet "Boat Smart" was version 'A' the latest copy of "Boat Smart" is Version 'G'. It is greatly improved from the original and Floridian boaters should obtain the latest Version 'G' and reference only it contact
www.myfwc.com/

Florida Law requires that persons born on or after January 01, 1988 complete a NASBLA approved boater education course prior to operating a vessel powered by a motor of 10 horsepower or more. NAUTICAL LOG believes every boater should have this training besides it is a plus when purchasing marine insurance. The NASBLA approved course can be studied on line and after a practice test one can take the real thing. Each State has its own course so a Florida boater should take the State of Florida course and so on. You will receive a credit card style certificate which is kept with a photo ID, such as your drivers license, when you go boating.

When NAUTICAL LOG took the test years ago it consisted of 55 questions, this is now expanded to 75 questions. They are carefully selected and cover all the course subject matter well. So there you are a little effort and you will become a knowledgeable, capable and safe boater.


"CODICIL"

Just after this was posted my March 2010 "Yachting" arrived with the days mail. For those of you who know Jay Coyle his column is always worth a read. His irreverent style this month is 'Captain Schmaptin' about the joys of license renewal health requirements. Do not miss it!!

As to how this applies to the NAUTICAL LOG Post above well with the State Safe Boating Certificates there are no 'health requirements'. By having your State Drivers License as your photo ID you have already agreed to any testing. So have a laugh with Jay Coyle and go ahead and become a State Safe Boater with no USCG procedures.

Good Watch.

Monday, February 15, 2010

NAME CALLING

The net reportedly cut by Bethune when boarding. He also reported cutting his hand.

Having been busy watching the Olympics from Vancouver BC where I lived for two years and of course a visit to the Miami International Boat Show, I finally got to my mail this morning. It came as no real surprise that two Media Releases from The Institute of Cetacean Research were waiting for me. It seems that once again the people in the Southern Ocean are behaving stupidly - well now that's a bit harsh - NAUTICAL LOG is not perfect so perhaps we should change that to inappropriately - there that's better.

When the DVC Ady Gil was sunk her Captain Peter Bethune was quoted as saying to his wife in New Zealand that all he wanted to do was head for home. Sometime later he arrived in Perth Western Australia aboard MS Steve Irwin and was interviewed by the NZ Maritime Authorities. When she sailed two or three days later he was 'mentioned-in-dispatches' as being aboard as an officer. Full of 'pissandvigor' again to save the whales or not quite prepared to go home to New Zealand just yet - whatever.

Under stress people act stupidly - sorry inappropriately - so here one sees in the ICR Media Releases that he Bethune a New Zealand national has somehow boarded the MS Shonan Maru #2 at sea. With some idea to place a 'citizens arrest', which does not actually apply under International Maritime Law, on her Japanese Master. The Master placed him under restraint in accordance with the Japanese Mariners Act. It appears that Bethune cut his hand in boarding and this has been treated by the Japanese crew.

All this maritime shenanigans is going on in vessels underway at sea during 'The Year of the Seafarer 2010' while the International Maritime Organization (IMO) does absolutely nothing about it. These being the people we seafarers are supposed to look too for guidance in nautical matters - yeah really!

In fairness to the Sea Shepherd Pirate Group at their website one may read their side of this stupidity oops sorry - inappropriate behaviour - if one can interpret the confused logic and complex subject overlap of 'Wats-his-names' statements. As usual he plays a dangerous game with other peoples lives and then goes home to a new residence in Friday Harbor, WA or so NAUTICAL LOG has been told. No doubt he is quite the local hero there with all this latest publicity on creative TV at Animal Planet!!

For those of you interested in such things there are three Agencies which handle maritime affairs in Japan, these are the Japan Coast Guard, The Japan Shipping Exchange, and the Tokyo Maritime Arbitration Commission. Mr. Peter Bethune would seem to be heading for the Japanese Courts since he is now a guest of the Japanese Maritime Legal System. Hope he likes Japanese food, such as sushi and bluefin tuna - no whale meat of course that's for research only!

Good Watch.

NLIN#13 "M" NOTICES

The following M-Notices are now available at www.mcga.gov.uk/

MIN 366 (M+F)
MIN 373 (M+F)
MIN 377 (M+F)
MGN 405 (M+F)
MGN 406 (M+F)
MSN 1817 (M+F)

Good Watch.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

A MATTER OF PERSPECTIVE







Some years ago when NAUTICAL LOG first heard of the SEA SHEPHERD Pirate Group it was in conjunction with GREENPEACE. Back in those long gone days the two groups worked reasonably well together to try and prevent Japanese Whaling. However the SS-PG decided to take a more violent stance or at least its fearless leader did which meant everyone else had to follow along or leave. This caused a complete division and GREENPEACE becoming a non-starter in anti-whaling activities and the SS-PG becoming extremely violent in their tactics. Blatant acts of piracy became commonplace and the International Maritime Organization (IMO) did what it does best of all - absolutely nothing.

Each year more and more violent acts in violation of international maritime law were used by SS-PG to try a prevent the commercial success of the Japanese Whaling Fleet. In turn the JWF which calls it's hunting "Research" is clearly in the business of commercial whaling. In spite of hunting in the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary, which is supposed to be administered by Australia, nothing was done. Indeed yet today in the 2010 season there is no Naval Patrol by the Australian Navy, a national disgrace.

But how about the Sea Shepherd Pirate Group itself it too has changed it seems. This year the Japanese Whaling Fleet has adopted the tactics of SS-PG and is fighting back - hard.

When one applies for a crewing position with SS-PG there are the usual employment forms to complete. There is however a further document 'VOLUNTEER WAIVER OF LIABILITY' which is the key one of the Employment Package. It consists of six paragraphs covering key points of the SS-PG mission. The fifth is the one NAUTICAL LOG will address here. We quote in part,

"I am ready to put myself in personal danger. I also understand that I am aboard a vessel that possibly carries no insurance policy of any kind."

With this agreed too the crews mann the SS-PG vessels and set off. We have the bravado statements and interviews of the Captain and crew of the Ady Gil prior to departing - several times actually - Hobart Tasmania. But then when the Japanese decide to counter attack and the Ady Gil comes off decidedly second best we have the Captain complaining about the whalers violence.

From the MS Bob Barker comes her Captains dramatic statement again we quote,

"As we sit in the shadow of this cetacean death machine, I'm proud to captain this ship and fine crew on such a noble mission. We will end this illegal operation once and for all, thanks to support from our staff and supporters the world over."


Heavy stuff indeed that reminds one of Winston Churchill or perhaps more to the point of "Star Wars." Clearly these statements are prepared in advance ready to spout forth on the appropriate occasion.

So having developed his tactics and enacted them for several seasons virtually unopposed now that the Japanese have this year replied in kind 'Wats-his-name' seems quite disconcerted. Instead of his usual aggressive bravado statements we get this dramatic whining - we quote

"Because the whalers got away basically scot-free with the outrageous sinking of the Ady Gil, they now apparently think they can do whatever they want and they appear to have no qualms about endangering Sea Shepherd crew. What we really need is for the governments of Australia and New Zealand to step up and start enforcing maritime laws in these waters, or who know what the whalers will do next. Australia and New Zealand lives are at risk every day in these waters."


This from the people that sign to accept personal risk in uninsured vessels ready to give their lives for the whales but now are suddenly faced with a matter of perspective when the other side fights back. Well NAUTICAL LOG suggests to SS-PG to go home out of every one's way. The matter could then be resolvable between the governments concerned. The ANZAC Navies will have no excuse not to order the Japanese Whaling Fleet to leave the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary and patrol the area to enforce the law.

Good Watch.

UPDATE February 09, 2010.

From the dangerous to the ridiculous at the Japanese website (see Link List) comes the latest data. It seems they are quite well informed about the SS-PG ships, the MS Bob Barker is described as a cockroach invested Togolese ship. While the MS Steve Irwin is videoed steaming along blaring out what is described as "classical music". It seems the Japanese whalers are feeling confident and have developed a sort-of-kinda sense of humour. Pride before a fall or has 'Wats-his-name' finally lost his marbles. However giving credit when credit is due SS-PG, the Japanese Whalers have left the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary.

Good Watch.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

INCIDENT SOUTH

MS Bob Barker collision damage


Flag of TOGO West Africa







Yet another incident and yet another nation involved in antiwhaling activities. The Norwegian/Togo vessel MS Bob Barker and the MS Yushin Maru 3 were involved in a mutual ramming incident at position 65-21 South and 67-58 East or 180 miles from Cape Darnley in Australian Antarctic Territory.

While as usual both sides blame the other it does seem clear that the MS Bob Barker was blocking the slipway of the Japanese whaling factory ship MS Nisshin Maru. In the attempt to move her clear the MS Yushin Maru 3 came into collision with the starboard side of MS Bob Barker. The SS-PG report that a 1 metre gash has been opened in the MS Bob Barker midships starboard side above the waterline (see first photo above).

In the Sea Shepherd Pirate Group website
www.seashepherd.org/ there are photos and also in the Japanese website www.icrwhale.org/ which clearly shows the MS Bob Barker flying the flag of Norway as its Flag State. However in its Press Release the Japanese Whalers describe the vessel as having a Flag State of Togo, if this is correct then flying the Norwegian flag in the stern Flag State position is a violation of Maritime Law. In addition to The Netherlands and France it would appear that now Norway must address the issue of violent maritime action by one of its vessels.

The incident is a continuation of the whaling violence with the Japanese far more aggressive this year having adopted the tactics of the SS-PG. Clearly the SS-PG are very rattled by this having always been the aggressors in previous years with very little retaliation by the Japanese Whaling Fleet.

It is now well past time NAUTICAL LOG believes for Australia to deploy its Naval Forces to patrol its Antarctic Territory. This before yet another vessel is sunk or lives are lost on any side. Perhaps Japan, New Zealand, France, The Netherlands and Norway may like to all join in as well.


Good Watch

Friday, February 5, 2010

ZEEBRIEVENWET

RIDDERZAAL DEN HAAG

Amongst the papers landing on NAUTICAL LOG desk this morning was a report from Brussels Belgium, the European Union capital city.

The Dutch Government has submitted a Bill that would empower it to strip violent anti-whaling environmentalists of the registry of their ships. This follows violent protests against Japanese whalers by Dutch registered ships of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society.

The amendment to the law on the nationality of ships would deprive Dutch registered vessels of Certificates of Registry - Zeebrievenwet - issued by the Dutch Government
"when harm is done to a ship, its crew or load or when it would be used in such a way that relations with other countries could be affected negatively"
according to the draft legislation.

The existing Law was enacted in 1926 and empowers the Government to strip ships of their Dutch nationality only in cases where ships are used to practice piracy, transport slaves or bring The Netherlands into a war-like situation.

Although the Dutch Parliament has started deliberations on the proposed amendment some parliamentary critics of whaling are cautious about enacting it making it uncertain whether the amendment will be able to pass parliament.

The Dutch Government told parliament it has drawn up the Bill in light of a string of harassing actions in Antarctic waters by the Sea Shepherd vessel MS Steve Irwin which is of Dutch registry now commonly called the Flag State. The Government told parliament that it will deflag only as a last resort if the protesters do not heed warnings against the use of violent tactics.

At the beginning of March parliamentary specialists will meet to study the proposed legislation. This procedure will take up to six months.

The entire process NAUTICAL LOG believes is designed to give the Sea Shepherd Pirate Group (SS-PG) plenty of time to arrange a new Flag State most likely in one of the many 'convenience' Flag States and have the whole problem just go away from The Netherlands jurisdiction.

Also there is the legal morass created by the French TAAF Prefect and his District Chief of Adelie Land, in issuing a 'Diplomatic Letter of Approval' to the SS-PG. The SS-PG Bluefin action, planned for later this year, will take place in the Mediterranean and pits European Union Nation against European Union Nation. This comes about with a Dutch registered vessel holding a French 'Diplomatic Letter of Approval' planning to take violent action against Mediterranean Spanish, French, Maltese, Italian, Sicilian, Cypriot, and Greek fishermen (refer to the CONUNDRUM Post previously).
UPDATE:

Currently the Japanese Whaling Fleet is reported at 67 degrees 10 minutes South latitude and 67 degrees 7 minutes East longitude, it is being monitored by the SS-PG vessel MS Bob Barker. It is further reported that the SS-PG vessel referred to above MS Steve Irwin is en route to join the fleet.

Good Watch.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

ESKE W PALE KREYOL?

If you know what that title means - we need you!

There is currently a great need in South Florida for speakers of Creole and also French. This is due to the needs of the Haitian People, so if you speak Creole please contact the AMERICAN RED CROSS and they will direct you. Training is available 'nan Kreyol' to run the computers and process the paperwork for a variety of needs such as the 'Temporary Protective Status' forms. Florida International University and Miami-Dade County Public Schools are building a database and offering classes 'nan Kreyol'.


Thank you/Merci.

Good Watch

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

SELF-RIGHTOUS

Having been away from the Internet for about ten days NAUTICAL LOG has been catching up on things. We also decided to make a new layout for our Blog - same old thing gets a bit boring. Just reading a comment in OLD SALT BLOG - which is just about the best nautical Blog around - to a criticism by the CENTER FOR RESPONSIBLE TRAVEL on the cruise lines continuing to call at Labadee Haiti. One person in charge of such things is Richard Fain, who happens to be a neighbor of mine, he wrote an explanation in reply. The commenter referred to Richard Fain and called the CENTER 'self-righteous'.

As NAUTICAL LOG had also Posted a similar criticism of Labadee calls that would make us, according to the commenter, 'self-righteous' also. Interesting!

The CENTER FOR RESPONSIBLE TRAVEL is a non-profit research institute who's mission is to improve ecotourism and sustainable tourism. Seems worthy enough to NAUTICAL LOG. Lets face it if we keep destroying everything there will be nowhere left to take a holiday or go on vacation.

So how come this commenter calls us 'self-righteous' and is this even the right word to use? The definition of the word is "righteous in one's own estimation". Since we all felt 'righteous' on the subject matter we expressed our opinion about the timing of the calls at Labadee in Haiti, an area of such massive destruction and suffering. If we are now going to limit opinions there would be no requirement for comments in the first place!! After all the commenter is also expressing his opinion, this is how an issue is debated.

Good Watch.