Blogging from the Highlands of Scotland
'From fanaticism to barbarism is only one step' - Diderot

Monday 14 May 2007

If you care about whales, please watch this ad.

It seems that Lord Ashcroft, a donor to and former treasurer of the Conservative Party, has funded the production of a short advertisement to try and persuade a number of Caribbean nations (Antigua and Barbuda; Dominica; St Kitts and Nevis; St Lucia; and St Vincent and the Grenadines) to oppose attempts by Japan to resume commercial whale hunting at a meeting of the International Whaling Commission (IWC) in Anchorage, Alaska from 28-31 May 2007; the advertisement is narrated by Sir Trevor McDonald, a prominent and well-respected newscaster in the UK who is originally from the Caribbean. The Caribbean nations have received fisheries aid from Japan and might therefore be considered to have hitherto supported the resumption of whaling purely as a result of this financial aid. The advertisement is designed to encourage the Caribbrean countries to switch sides.

Obviously a major objective of the advertisement is to gather support from amongst the populations of these Caribbean islands so that they might exercise pressure upon their governments, but it seems that both CNN and MTV (part of TimeWarner and Viacom, respectively) have declined to carry the advertisement on their East Caribbean networks. Undoubtedly both have major commercial interests in Japan.

I would like to do my small part to circumvent Japanese efforts to prevent this advertisement being shown by including it in my little blog, courtesy of YouTube:

PS/ I hold no special brief for Lord Ashcroft, although the fact that he seems to have become something of a 'hate figure' for some on the 'left' of British politics (for example, read the comments made by Ben Bradshaw, Environment Minister, in the House of Commons in the linked Daily Telegraph article above) is already a factor in his favour so far as I am concerned! He has a record of supporting worthwhile causes, notably CrimeStoppers; whatever one might think of him he does support 'good causes' and is prepared to put his own name, time and money into them. Another good example of his altruism is his efforts to assemble the largest collection in the world of Victoria Crosses, under the control of a charitable trust set up by him; the trust intends, apparently, to put the collection on public display in London in due course.

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