Forgiveness and Freedom…

23 11 2010

William asked for a time out tonight from writing so I, Carrie get to assume the thought to keyboard task at hand…

Today we witnessed our first dolphin hunt drive. The energy around watching these skilled mariners hunt their prey haunted me as I watched it unfold…such a back-n-forth, start-n-stop series of events. The anticipation level is daunting at best. I longed for and prayed with William that God would literally hold the dolphins in His hands and carry them away from the fisherman – and again, our prayers were answered, the dolphins escaped. There are no words that describe the feeling of knowing a family of dolphin were able to get away and are safe, still in the ocean doing what they were created to be and do – being dolphins. However…

I can’t get out of my head yesterday’s experience at the Taiji Whale Museum. NEVER will I EVER forget the one dolphin looking right into my eyes as I begged for his/her forgiveness and watching another come right alongside – both in my presence and me in theirs (click here for video clip by Steven Severson). There was an INCREDIBLE experience that will be with me till I die. It was as though they were consoling me rather than me consoling them. I must say, I was a train wreck of emotion and now as I recall the experience, I am deeply saddened by the fact that these two incredible creatures will live out their life as slaves to people who want money so they, the people, can selfishly enjoy themselves. The dolphin’s life is shortened considerably by their unfortunate new reality and their home is about the size of a two-car garage or smaller. To survive, they have no choice but to perform for their food. I have to say, I hate it. I desperately want to help them. The captivity trade is awful – I now have seen it with my own eyes and its reality has pierced my heart as hard and heavy as the love I have for my son. These two dolphins have been RIPPED from their family and their freedom. As an American citizen who knows how precious and sacred freedom is, this is something that can’t be taken lightly. I will fight for these animals – they deserve it.

The captivity aspect of this issue seems to bother me more than the slaughter. Let me quickly say, both are beyond comprehension. I have not witnessed a slaughter since we arrived and sure hope the now 5-day trend continues.

We now anticipate another day of duty at the cove and pray for tomorrow’s outcome.

For the dolphins – may they swim forever free,
Carrie DeBord


22 11 2010

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Today the fisherman didn’t go out because of bad weather – day 4 with no dolphin killing. The weather is supposed to be bad tomorrow so we’re hopeful the dolphins out in the ocean stay in the ocean.

We went to the Taiji Whale Museum with a few other cove guardians; Steven who arrived today, Thomas and Yumiko and Takashi from Tokyo. Elora chose not to go so she waited in the car. We saw shark fin soup, Risso dolphin meat (with the skin still on) and a lot of whale meat, frozen and non-frozen right when you walk into the building. On the first floor after the food area we saw a miniature landscape with Promontory Point, the cove and guess what else it had…a dead whale and another whale being harpooned. This place celebrates the killing of these beautiful animals by humans. Man is honored for killing them, overtaking them in the hunt. This is sick. There were whale skeletons hanging on the whale and one with real whale skin.

On the second floor there were fetuses of Risso dolphins, Bottlenose dolphins, Orcas, Blue whales and Humpback whales. There was a head of a bottlenose dolphin completely cut off in a round glass jar. There was whale tongue, a whale eye chunk, whale heart, whale teeth. The worst part to me inside the museum is the many whale and dolphin fetuses in big glass jars, lots of them. They had baby bottlenose dolphin fetuses beginning at 2 months gestation all the way to near birth. This was the saddest part from inside the museum.

On the third floor was all about the harpoons, ships they used for hunting, the men and women who were celebrities doing this and the different stages of the harpoon changed over time:
1st stage) metal arrow attached to stick pole
2nd stage) gun that shot the harpoon
3rd stage) three harpoons launched from a gun
4th stage) actual harpoon launcher which when shot into the whale opens up three prongs that expand inside the whale causing massive pain and injury
5th stage) exploding shock harpoon – easy to fire, metal, attached to ship.

I know why I don’t ever want to eat any kind of meat again, especially after seeing all this.

Now on to the outside part of the whale museum…

When we went to the outside I saw dolphins in the smallest dolphinarium I have ever seen. The dolphins were squeaking and talking. Three compartments, two dolphins in one, three in the other and a single dolphin alone. My Mom was crying terribly and I don’t blame her. We now know where these dolphins come from – not even a football field away thousands of dolphins are driven into the cove, most are killed and the others are brought here or shipped to some faraway place to live in a concrete tank. This is more than terrible and I hope no-one will ever go to a dolphin or whale show ever again. These animals do not deserve this. Two dolphins came up to my Mom. I was kind of jealous. They knew she was sad and I think they can tell human emotion. I know they feel sad – the two dolphins stayed with my Mom for a long time, rolled on their side even. They were talking to each other. It was sad but it was special. My Mom promised she would never give up trying to help them. Their entire family was killed and now they live in a small concrete jail. My Mom was crying so hard and kept saying she was so sorry for what has happened to them. I have not seen my Mom that sad and upset since we got to Taiji. I want to live here to change things and so does my Mom if we can get our pets back home to Japan. I saw spinner dolphins. They were jumping, squeaking. I stuck my hand out and they came right up to me and even nibbled on my finger. I was going out of bounds but I wanted so bad to connect with them, and I did. My Mom wonders how any of these wonderful dolphins and pilot whales could EVER trust a human after what they have been through. Gosh, their entire family has been torn away from them – killed right in front of them. The same humans who killed their family are the same group of people who feed them to do tricks for human entertainment. I know I am just a kid but this is wrong. I think Taiji is the “broker” (as my Mom calls it) for most of the captive dolphin trade industry.

We went towards the trainers. My Mom’s goal before getting to the museum was to ask the trainers what happened to the 9 babies brought to the museum after last week’s slaughter. They said they didn’t know. Then they began to run away. My Mom was mad. They completely lied. The 9 babies were brought to the whale museum last week. We think the 9 babies were killed or slaughtered. I don’t think we will ever know. These trainers will never tell the truth and I doubt the fisherman will ever tell the truth.

Please do whatever you can to help the dolphins.

Thank you for reading again.

Over and out,
William DeBord

Day 3 – Cove Guardian Report by William…

21 11 2010

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Today was another great day in Taiji, no dolphins were killed. My Mom and I pray each day that God would be a hedge a protection around them and keep them away from the fishermen. I went down to the rocks to explore again. It’s really a rocky shore where I can see and hear the fisherman’s orders as they come into port. I was able to take some really good pictures.

We observed a man who looked official climbing around rocks that we had been exploring yesterday and the day before. He appeared to be looking for something. We assume it was someone trying to figure out if we had planted anything secret to keep away the dolphins. The good news is, our hands are clean. This person would not talk with us. He just went about doing whatever he came to do. The last we saw him he went down a dirt path. Don’t know what he was up to but it looked fishy. Get it?

My Mom and I went to Glenda’s mountain and saw the inside of the killing cove for the first time. It was hard to see but we pushed hard enough against the ropes to get a picture. They really do a lot to make it difficult now. We saw the blue tarps which they roll out to cover their blood trail when the slaughters are happening. This is to block people from being able to see the fisherman killing the dolphins. They put up signs that warn people of falling rocks. I don’t think that is really what they are talking about. There is another cliff on the other side with absolutely no warning signs. What do you think?

Two Japanese people from Tokyo came tonight and we all had dinner together. They are very nice and will be with us tomorrow at the cove. They visited the Taiji Whale Museum today and showed pictures and video of the dolphins and whale carcasses. They had baby whale and dolphin fetus in glass jars on display. It was disturbing how a whale museum is showing that. It looked like they ripped it out of the Mothers stomach and we suppose it’s from one of the many dolphins killed in the cove. From the video are live performances of dolphins and I am sure they are survivors of the slaughters from Taiji. The captivity trade is driving the slaughter of dolphins. This is proof.

Please visit Sea Shepherd’s website and you might see a picture I took from the fisherman coming back into port today (click here).

Once again, this is William DeBord signing out.

Day 2 – Cove Guardian Report by William

20 11 2010

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Got a great sleep last night but not before getting a chance to talk to a reporter from the Japanese Times. He asked me many questions and thought it was amazing that a 10-year-old would come to Japan, get out of school for it and want to watch the movie “The Cove”. His 11-year-old brother is more interested in Avatar and movies like that. We saw Yuri at the cove after all the fisherman came back into port today and he said he would email me to ask more questions. He said this is a big story in Japan. This is really good.

It was our second day in Taiji and another day with no dolphins being killed at the cove. The cove guardians did the happy dance and celebrated by having curry vegetable lunches in Shingu. It was really fun, especially playing the drum game with Elora. I have to say though; this is a lot of work being a cove guardian.

A movie crew also came in today. They asked Scott West a lot of question which took a while. They also asked me what’s happening and what’s going on. I told them how the Japanese fisherman do things and at certain points where you can see their activities. As Big Guns and I hiked down the cliffs I heard the fisherman talking Japanese over their radios to each other as they passed us from Promontory Point. Afterwards, Scott took my Mom and me to “The Wall”, a location just past Promontory Point where the fishermen drive the dolphin into the cove. Sadly, how the ground under the water is laid out makes a funnel which makes it easier for the fisherman to herd the dolphin into the cove, and by the time the dolphin reach this point they are really tired.

Big Guns had to leave today and since he was such a fun guy I will miss him. He really likes to take adventures around the point and the cove and I do to. More people arrived from Columbia and Australia but they couldn’t stay more than a day. We are sad they all had to leave but hope they can return soon. Steven from Wisconsin is on his way to Taiji and he wants to swim with me in the cove. That will be an adventure. My Mom really wants to cross the barriers but Scott advises her not to do that. Tomorrow we’ll be stationed at the cove and explore Glenda’s mountain. It’s high atop the mountain above the killing cove.

My Mom and I had a long conversation about the definition of evil because she was confronted about using that term to describe the fisherman or what the fisherman do here in Taiji. Here is was we found in the dictionary, it seems to sound right to me but I’m just a kid.

Definition of EVIL
1 a : morally reprehensible : SINFUL, WICKED b : arising from actual or imputed bad character or conduct.
2 a archaic : INFERIOR b : causing discomfort or repulsion : OFFENSIVE c : DISAGREEABLE.
3 a : causing harm : PERNICIOUS.

Thanks for reading once again and hope you have a good day. Bye.

William DeBord

Day 1 – Cove Guardian Report…

19 11 2010

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When I woke at 5:30am this morning I ate noodles…very different breakfast here than at home. We leave each morning at 6:30am. Libby, Tarah and Matthew came to the cove with us but by late morning they had to leave Taiji for home. Disappointing when the team leaves and especially that we just got here. But good news, more cove guardians are on their way.

My Mom and me were with Big Guns and Thomas to Promontory Point to be on lookout for the dolphin hunters. The other cove guardians were at the cove. After waiting for an hour or more we saw the fisherman out far on the horizon beyond the shipping lanes. They were spread far out from each other. I got in trouble a few times for wanting to explore and we were told to be overly cautious for bad guys who don’t like why we are here. So, my Mom sat me down more than once and I finally got her message. My Mom saw an older man near the path I had wandered down and when he saw her, he began to run down the path. She was kind of worried.

A little later the fisherman had been looking like they were playing cat and mouse. Three boats from the south looked like they were coming in, then all of a sudden they headed north. Everyone thought the other fisherman were seeing a family of dolphins. After a long time waiting and watching we finally saw them begin to head in our direction. That told us they did not have a pod of dolphins with them. This was great for our first day.

What really made me sad today was seeing the dolphins being held in captivity in very small holding pens. I saw them breathe and flap their tails. I wonder if they miss their family who have been killed. I saw the Japanese fisherman trying to improve their tarps on the gutting barge and included is a picture. They do not want Sea Shepherd taking pictures of them.

The other high point of today was going to Wonderland with Big Guns. After walking up 108 stairs we finally reached the top that looks out over the skyline. It is beautiful here but knowing what happens makes it ugly to me.

A reporter for Japan Times came from Tokyo and interviewed me tonight. Yuri says he will email us when the article is released but it will be in Japanese. He is trying to get the fisherman to share their story but they won’t talk. They hide a lot.

For the dolphins – may they swim forever free!

William DeBord

Day 1 – Call of Duty at The Cove Begins…

18 11 2010

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It’s nearly 4:00am and William and I are about to take on our first day of active duty at The Cove. We know our eyes will witness an evil that will change us forever.

Our train from Osaka yesterday did not allow us to make it in time to witness the unfortunate occurrence of 9 babies losing their entire family to slaughter. The babies were taken to the whale museum and everyone else was killed. It’s highly unlikely the babies will survive without their Mama’s. To make it even more disturbing, two additional adult dolphins were removed from captivity at the museum, put on a skiff (small boat), wrapped in foam and taken to the gutting barge then gutted alive (saw the footage myself). This is what happens here. While all this was happening, a local marathon was taking place directly in front of the cove, but hidden from the “killing cove”.

Later in the day, our new friend Scott West of Sea Shepherd took William and me to The Cove and gave us a quiet opportunity to see and “feel” this place. No words can describe what I feel, even now after 10 hours of “soaking it in”. I wonder if this is what it feels like to visit a concentration camp in Germany or war-torn Rwanda – so many lives taken, so much disregard for life.

Please see Elora Malama West’s Cove Guardian Report for detail of yesterday’s event (click here).

William will be authoring today’s accounts while I, his personal Secretary will type…we need you all “out there” on the front lines making calls to the Japanese Embassies – it WILL make a difference and appears it is…they are hanging up on callers…the pressure is on them – please keep it up! Do not be weary doing good.

For the dolphins – may they swim forever free,
Carrie & William DeBord

Message from William…

14 11 2010

VIDEO (click here)


I feel bad, horrible. 14 dolphins, God’s creation were killed last night. Dolphins breathe air; before they killed the dolphins the fishermen just drag them ruthlessly through the water. Just like whales, they breathe air. They separate the babies from the moms and they have live birth. They feed their young for over one year. In dog years that’s a long time. When they kill them, it’s just for the money. It’s hard, it’s just hard. I saw my mom crying today when she saw the video from Sea Shepherd. Its horrible how they brutally slaughter them each day and when we get there we are going to see it. People question why do they it – it’s all for the money, all for the money. And the government just tries to cover it up. People in Japan can’t watch the movie “The Cove” because the government won’t allow. So, we’re thinking in the Tokyo airport we would show the movie on our laptop for onlookers to watch. The Japanese people deserve to know the truth. I’m thinking it may get us in trouble because they have cameras in the airport.

I wrote another letter today to the Japanese government asking them to please stop. Will you write one too?

Please save the dolphins.

William DeBord