Friday, December 3, 2010

Whale Warrior || Peter Bethune


Environmentalist and anti-whaling campaigner Pete Bethune is now the world's most recognised eco-warrior. His boarding of the Shonan Maru #2 Japanese whaling vessel in the Southern Ocean to perform a citizen's arrest on the captain, drew worldwide attention earlier this year. For his 'crime', Bethune - one of the stars of Animal Planet's 'Whale Wars' - was imprisoned in Japan for four months before finally receiving a two-year, suspended sentence.

Around the world Bethune's actions in trying to arrest the captain of the whaling ship for what he believes was the deliberate sinking of his boat, the 'Ady Gil', sparked a media frenzy. In Japan he was labelled a terrorist and there were daily protests against his actions.

On the day of his release from the Tokyo Detention Centre a local television reporter summed up the view of much the country when she asked Bethune how it felt to be the 'most hated man in Japan'. Controversial, attention-seeking, forthright and driven ...all these words have been used to describe Pete Bethune. What can't be denied, though, is that he is a man who is prepared to fight - quite literally - for his principles; principles which relate not just to the saving of the great whales of the Southern Ocean, but to the planet as a whole.

In Whale Wars the invective is not reserved solely for the Japanese. Bethune lashes his own government for their lack of action over Japan's annual whale hunt. For this, Bethune has received much criticism. This, though, he believes is a small price to pay for spotlighting the plight of the whales. Bethune's book will not only tell the story of 'Ady Gil' and the whale wars, but also of Bethune's other legendary campaigns - amongst them the 'Earthrace' adventure.

Readers will be astounded by Bethune's incredible feat of circumnavigating the world in record time in a futuristic, biodiesel-powered speedboat. It took him two action-packed attempts. Most skippers would have been broken after just one. People might not agree with Pete Bethune's way of going about things. Indeed, his radical, single-minded environmental crusades have cost him both financially and in the personal stakes where his long-time marriage to wife Sharyn has finally ended. Whale Wars is rare, modern-day adventure tale with a high-principled back story that makes it a most compelling read.

ISBN 13: 9781869712235 ISBN 10: 1869712234
Author: Bethune, Peter
Pub Date: 11 Oct 2010
Edition Type: 1
Format: Paperback
Imprint: Little Brown HNZ
RRP: A$35.00
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