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Fly the Bloody Skies with Atlantic Airways

By August 20, 2015No Comments

Commentary by Sea Shepherd Founder, Captain Paul Watson


The brutal slaughter of 61 pilot whales at Sandavágur on August 12. Photo: Sea Shepherd / Mayk Wendt

I think that that there are some people in the Faroe Islands, especially in the government and media, who do not have a concept of what a movement is.

This report was in the Faroese media a few days ago: “Last week, one of the pilots onboard a helicopter from Atlantic Airways spotted a relatively large pod of pilot whales. This resulted in the pilot whales being driven to beach in Sandavágur and slaughtered.

In the aftermath, Paul Watson, founder of Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, has urged his followers to contact the national flight company and its CEO, Jørgen Holme. The contact information has also been published on Paul Watson’s Facebook page.”

According to, Atlantic Airways has received several hundreds of e-mails from people who expressed their opinions on the slaughter of whales in the Faroes and the role of Atlantic Airways in this.

The flight company has made the decision to ignore the e-mails.

“’We have chosen not to answer these people. Many of the e-mails are standard templates where people only add their names. These people are not interested in dialogue, but want to put pressure on us,’ says the sales and marketing manager of Atlantic Airways, Árni Olsen.

Árni Olsen estimates that the protesters have no intention of visiting the Faroe Islands, but are only interested in the protest against the slaughter of pilot whales.

We will take time to answer when we receive serious inquiries from travel agencies, says Árni Olsen.”

Árni Olsen and many others actually think the entire opposition to the horrific slaughter of whales is the fault of one person – myself.

According to a recent news story in the Faroese media, the Atlantic Airways website was crashed by the volume of messages being received and the story states that I am responsible.

I am flattered that the whalers and Atlantic Airways seem to think that I have orchestrated the entire defense of the whales by Sea Shepherd but the truth is that I have not – far from it.

I did provide commentary, as did many others. In fact the information was sent to me by someone else who thought it highly unethical that an airline would be spotting whales for the whale killers.

I recognize that the Faroese whalers and their supporters need a face to hate and I recognize that it is convenient to use my face. I don’t really mind of course but they are seriously misjudging the situation if they believe that I am orchestrating events. I’m not.

I do not even hold a position in Sea Shepherd and I do not give instructions to anyone. Not one of the Sea Shepherd volunteers in the Faroe Islands reports to me or takes orders from me. The captains are in command of their vessels. Crew leaders coordinate volunteers and they themselves are volunteers.

There are some 40 national Sea Shepherd entities around the world and some are supporting this campaign financially and some are not. The people taking the risks to protect the whales are not paid and they are not staff; they are simply compassionate people who are part of a movement.

There are thousands of people sitting behind computer screens who are championing this cause. I have no idea who they are and I certainly do not give them instructions.

I am not organizing demonstrations before Danish embassies around the world. In fact no one person or organization is doing so. These demonstrations are born from the compassionate concerns of hundreds of people around the world.

Targeting myself will not stop the demonstrations or the interventions.

Japan thought that by targeting me and using their power to harass me legally and politically that they could shut down Sea Shepherd. In fact, it simply made Sea Shepherd stronger.

Ask anyone who was arrested on the beach recently for interfering against this obscenity called the Grindadrap if they were ordered to interfere or if they were paid to interfere? The answer will be “No.”

Ask them why and they will say, “Because I care.”

That’s all there is to it.

Many of the Faroese have this idea that I am making money from the opposition to the slaughter. I am not. This is not my job. The problem is that they can’t comprehend why anyone would do anything about anything without being paid. That is their mindset, not ours.

I have been defending wildlife since the age of ten and my motivation now is the same as it was a half century ago. I do what I do because I care. I oppose brutal abuse and the slaughter of wildlife simply because I care. I always have.

There have even been accusations that for some ridiculous reason I am a racist anti-Scandinavian and that for some bizarre reason I hate the Danes and the Faroese.

Considering the fact that my mother was Danish, that claim does not make any sense at all. The truth is that race and culture have absolutely nothing to do with why I oppose suffering and slaughter.

The reason I oppose suffering and slaughter is because of the blood spilled into the sea, because of the screams of whales that haunt me, because of the agonizing convulsions of the whales as they suffer beneath the blades of their killers.

If the Faroese wish to know why the world is rising up in anger against them they need only look in a mirror or in their own reflections in the water as they wash the blood from their hands.

The age of unbridled cruelty and slaughter is fast being jettisoned from human society. There is a growing intolerance towards the particular insanity of humanity that practices psychotic violence in the name of tradition and culture.

So my answer to the CEO of Atlantic Airways, Jørgen Holme is simple. Don’t blame me because your website crashed or because people are angry with you. They are angry with your airline because one of your pilots called in a mass slaughter of pilot whales.

When your pilots are snitches whoring for the whale killers and your company endorses the slaughter of whales why are you surprised that people object to flying the bloody skies of Atlantic Airways?


Please use the contact information below to let Atlantic Airways know why you oppose the killing of whales – “because you care!”

Atlantic Airways
Vagar Airport
Sørvágur, Faroe Islands
Phone: (+298) 34 10 00
Fax: (+298) 34 10 01

Jørgen Holme, Atlantic Airways CEO

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