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Wednesday, January 05, 2011

Australia's secret legal whaling plan

God bless wikileaks...
Aust govt 'lied' about whale deal
Labor "lied outright" to the Australian people by secretly supporting a deal that would have seen the resumption of commercial whaling while publicly criticising the proposal, the federal opposition says.

US diplomatic cables obtained by WikiLeaks show that as late as February 2010 Australia was willing to compromise with Japan if the deal resulted in a reduced level of whaling.

A compromise plan to give Japan, Iceland and Norway new commercial whaling rights in return for a smaller kill collapsed during International Whaling Commission talks in June.

At the time, then environment minister Peter Garrett said "this is not the time to go backwards by sanctioning whaling for years to come".

The proposal would allow the three countries to hunt almost 13,000 whales over the coming decade, he said.

But the leaked cable reveals Mr Garrett's former chief of staff, David Williams, told the US Australia could accept a compromise deal.

Opposition environment spokesman Greg Hunt says the diplomatic correspondence makes clear Australian officials were seeking to legitimise commercial whaling.

One of the interesting revelations from wikileaks is that Governments lie. They lie when they wake up, they lie when they have lunch, they lie when they go to sleep, they lie so much that it's difficult to ascertain where the lie starts and where the lie begins.

This acid drip, acid drip, acid drip onto the structure of Government as a whole is what is most damaging to authority now and with almost a decades worth of wikileak cables to come out the long term impact of this cynicism on our political structures is difficult to comprehend.

So the bloody Australians were on the one hand sounding staunch but behind the scenes were willing to bow to Japan for this bullshit 'scientific whaling' crap. At least NZ officials were upfront about wanting to legalize whaling.

Ugly, very ugly.


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