China Coast Guard -Haijing 3901

The Chinese Communist Party’s fishing fleet essentially strip-mines the ocean, destroying the fish population wherever it goes. Their depredations in the South China Sea are well known and where they go, they bring the Chinese Coast Guard to defend their fishing fleet. It’s big business. Now they’ve turned their attention to Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands. I refer you to Commander Salamander’s recent article:

(US Naval Institute Blog) “International boundaries for me, but for thee,” seems to be the rule of the day. The strong will do what they will, the weak will suffer what they must.

There is something going on outside the territorial seas of Ecuador’s Galapagos Islands that in the last 36-hrs is starting to get the attention it deserves.

The question of what role the US should play is explored in the article cited, and I encourage you to read it. The larger question of what coordinated role the world needs to play to stop the Chinese Communist Party anywhere it rears its head is illustrated here as a small nation attempts to defend itself and its exclusive economic zone.

Asia News (link)
07/30/2020, 16.39
ECUADOR – CHINA

Chinese boats are fishing between the protected islands and the Ecuadorian coast, endangering the local marine life.

Argentina stopped the same fleet in the South Atlantic. One problem is China fishing subsidies. One scholar calls for join efforts to save the oceans.

Buenos Aires (AsiaNews) – A large fleet of Chinese fishing boats is threatening one of the most delicate natural ecosystems in the Pacific Ocean in the pursuit of giant squids, sharks and other species, with tonnes of waste left behind.

All this is taking place in a legal vacuum that makes an international agreement to regulate maritime fishing increasingly urgent.

For Ecuadorian President Lenin Moreno, the presence of about 260 Chinese ships between the Galapagos Islands and coastal Ecuador is a “danger”.

As a consequence, the authorities of the South American country have deployed the coastguard and other naval units over the past week to check that none of the Chinese boats enters Ecuador’s Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ), which stretches 360 km from the coast.

46 COMMENTS

  1. “The Chinese Communist Party’s fishing fleet essentially strip-mines the ocean, destroying the fish population wherever it goes.”

    Yep.

    When I crossed the Atlantic 20 years ago, flying fish and other sea critters were on our decks and easily seen about our small vessel. When I did the four month passage in the South Pacific in 2010, I saw plenty of Chinese factory vessels pulling all the living protein from the water and processing it for use back in China. There were very few flying fish and we caught nothing from our towed fishing lures. No whales, dolphins or fish were seen except when we were in Fijian waters.

    It’s one thing to be line fishing for tuna but another thing to be pulling the very krill out of the water, removing nutrients from the aquatic food chain.

    Barco Sin Vela II

    • Line fishing is fine. No problem, so long as they are in international water. The factory ships are scourges of the ocean and need to be turned into artificial reefs. Allow the ocean to rebuild.

      The Chinese are much the same way in their practices on land. I’ve walked through forests there. Nothing crawls, flies or moves. The protein has been scoured from the land.

  2. We need to start claiming fishing grounds outside of territorial waters, and sinking the vessels of non-signatories when found there. We can take the crews off first, if people are squeamish about it. The crews mostly have little choice in what they do anyway, so are of limited culpability.

    It’s not just China and the rest of Asia either, though they are the worst. Some European nations operate freighter-sized “fishing boats” in international waters that have a far larger impact on stocks than the usually tiny and antique fishing boats used on the US East Coast. Regulating ourselves won’t help the fisheries difficulties, when we are not the problem.

    -Kle.

    • 100% agreed.

      I have no problem with removing crews and sending them home, but the ships should not be used as “prizes” and sold for auction. Sink them. Send the message.

      • Yep. Sink-X. It’s the only thing to do.

        If we’re being all ‘environmental’ about it, send the sailors home in a stripped ship, dump the catch and let the seas eat it again, drain the boats of all their oils (as much as possible) and turn them into artificial reefs. In 5 years the sea life will return 10 fold due to the presence of an object for small fry to hide in and around.

        Communist Chinese ships need to be treated as the spy ships and guerilla war ships they are. Sink sink sink every damn last one.

        Notice how the Sea Shepherds don’t challenge the Chicoms? That says so much about how really ‘environmentally responsible’ they are.

        • (1) The Sea Shepherds are pussies. Just in it for the money and the lefty tail that rides the ships. The young women volunteers are there to show how enlightened and woke they are.

          (2) I’ve changed my mind. Don’t let the crews off. Just sink them with extreme prejudice.

          • My wife loved their farking show on Animal Planet. She thought they were sooooo noble for trying to sink Japanese ‘research’ ships.

            Me? Fucking pirates and attempted murderers. Seriously, some of the stuff they did would have been plenty reason for a show of force by Japanese Defense Force ships.

            I kept hoping. I had to listen to that shite for far too long. She finally began to see what I was saying, finally.

            Assholes. Pussies. The Japs should have pulled alongside and done to them what they did to several Chinese ships during the Mongol era (that is, board, hack the living shit out of everything, and then go home.)

            Arrogant ‘Environmentalists.’ And that fat bastid Paul…

            Well, my wife’s father was kicked out of the KKK for being too violent. Paul reminds me of him.

    • “Regulating ourselves won’t help the fisheries difficulties, when we are not the problem.”

      Same picture all over. We ban plastic straws and bags supposedly because of all the plastic in the oceans. Which comes overwhelmingly from China, followed in order by Indonesia, the Phillippines, and Vietnam. The US contribution to plastic in the oceans is about 3% that of China’s. (And Western Europe’s contribution is similarly negligible, though even lower.)

      Why does this happen? Officially, it is a puzzlement, mystery, and headscratcher. Unofficially, if I were drunk (following the Japanese convention wherein inconvenient reality can be addressed so long as the speaker is “drunk”) I might have some observations. But being at work, I am alas sober.

    • In Asian countries, crews are promised short trips or high pay, or short time of service. Then once onboard they are kept onboard for years to make months-long trips. It’s pretty much like being shanghaied or pressed into service.

      • Yes, that’s been going on for a long time. In the case of China, you’re owned by the state anyway so it’s different there, and worse.

        • Quite true. Yet there is the skulduggery and trickery. I think, perhaps Vietnam, among other countries, the people do have some autonomy hence the need to trick them into service.

    • The various state and federal regulate the shit out of us. You know why of course. It’s because they have jurisdiction only over us. They don’t go after the real causes because they can’t.

      Yesterday I heard on the radio that either state or fed, or both (I didn’t hear clearly who was behind this) will soon implement closures to all fishing from Santa Barbara in the south to Monterey in the north. This is only the latest evolution in decades-long desire to close the entire west coast to all humans. Not just certain activities, but to all access.

      Of course they use junk science. They know their programs are faulty. They don’t care. It’s not about resource management; it is absolutely about the utopian pipe dream of a world without humans. I shit you not. Research the timeline of the various incremental closures and regulations. Look who is involved and for how long.

      • I hadn’t heard that. I’m actually quite surprised, and at the same time, I’m not. The world without humans tends to be a world without “certain” humans, while Russian, Chinese and Japanese factory ships strip mine the ocean.

      • Steinbeck was no dummy. I think his characterizations and themes reflect believable portrayals of real people. Of his major novels I prefer East of Eden to Grapes of Wrath. Sweet Thursday, The Wayward Bus, and Winter of Our Discontent are worthwhile. I find him more readable than Faulkner or Hemingway. (Papa tended to get a bit preachy, and Faulkner requires serious effort on the part of the reader.) I rate these three above contemporary writers of their generation. Of course they were trying to accomplish entirely different effects.

        • Papa was a friggin socialist and commie fellow traveller. His early writing was okay, past that, can’t stand the man’s works or the man himself.

          • Well I was discussing novels rather than politics or personalities.
            And as I mentioned, Papa tends to get preachy. (You can see ample evidence of this in Islands, Green Hills and A Moveable Feast.)
            True, he supported the International Brigades against Franco. And he was wrong about the Cuban revolution(s). In retrospect there is little to differentiate between the commie/socialist Republicans and the Fascists in Spain, or Batista and Castro in Cuba. He liked TR and Churchill, had little use for Truman. He hated McCarthy and FDR with equal venom. He deplored Ezra’s pronouncements in Italy but chalked them up to insanity. He despised Montgomery. He fancied himself military expert, built a largely fictional reputation as a soldier. He was justly proud of his time w/ the 22nd inf. after D Day.
            Many writers of that generation acquired a tinge of pink, including Lewis, Mencken, cummings, a host of others.
            And Steinbeck as well. Which is why I prefer East of Eden to Grapes of Wrath and In Dubious Battle. (Counterpoint to those last two is provided by The Moon is Down and The Short Reign of Pippin IV.) Churchill was seemingly immune to this- he saw the Russian threat before anyone and was largely derided for his prophecies, as he was for his warnings about Hitler.
            I don’t recall any overt Socialism in Faulkner’s novels.

    • It would be the PERFECT use for the Chinese Fishing Fleet, the Chinese Coast Guard, the Chinese “Maritime Research” Agency and the People’s Liberation Army’s Navy.

      • I say we airlift the Wuhan Lab to a newly formed shipwreck reef while we’re at it…save the world from anymore Fauci, Gates, etc. manufactured virus idiocy.

        • How will/would Fauci get paid if he didn’t do those sorts of side deals? His government salary is way too small for a person with his ambitions.

  3. I guess the communists do what it takes to feed their fellow countrymen. The UN is not likely to do anything against China. Smaller countries must use military force but that takes politicians willing to confront China. But without backing form someone with a bigger stick I guess China is free to do whatever they like. Some years from now they will have managed to empty the oceans and destroyed relations to almost everybody.

    https://www.scmp.com/news/china/diplomacy/article/3045051/chinese-coastguard-ships-sail-tensions-indonesia-build

  4. You are discussing something I know very little about. My bad. The closest I’ve come to the subject are the salmon wars between the Canadian and USA fishers.

    Any chance the South American navies will take on the Chinese “coast guard” vessels?

  5. It would be very interesting if, you know, some superpower with really quiet subs, you know, and really excellent long-range torpedoes that can travel for miles at depth and rise to attack, in stealth mode, which the ADCAP torps can do (well, whatever superpower’s version of the ADCAP is (cough, cough,)) and just silently remove the ships one at a time. Kind of like what the u-boats did to us in the North Atlantic.

    Be a terrible shame, wouldn’t it? One minute there, the next, ‘bloop’ and there’s just a frothy hole in the water.

    Terrible shame. Just terrible.

    If only someone had super-quiet attack subs that could operate from depth and at range… If only.

    (I am sure there are a whole host of attack sub sailors and some boomer sailors that would gladly hoist a black flag if they could and were allowed to.)

    • Given that there are entire fleets below the waters now, by your reasoning we should see a great abundance of sea life. The problem is Taiwan, Korea, Japan, Spain, and now the growing threat of China. As large as China is now, it really is a later comer to taking from the oceans.

      • As I replied to you above, yes, the factory ships of all nations are strip mining the oceans and US regulations punish the far less significant private US operations rather than the nationally funded factory ships of other countries.

  6. Question: If and when the war comes, does the USN still have prize rules for captured enemy vessels? Or did that go the way of the sail and muzzled loaded cannon?

  7. As far back as the 1980s I observed Russian trawlers around St. George reef off the CA coast. This was in federal waters and well inside the Fisheries Exclusion Zone. Further north, Taiwan was using gill nets to catch Salmon off shore of WA. Still, within the U.S. exclusion zone. It seems fedgov was arbitrary in enforcement. Too, in the desire to avoid international incidents, Fishery Management agencies allowed a game of cat and mouse to continue.

    A personal example of that is while fishing 40 miles north of the island of Kauai, a Jap longliner fired a zipper across our bow from a range of about 1/2 mile. USCG was immediately notified but their reply contained the lame excuse that we were ‘too far off shore’. These same Jap longliners were spotted in Honolulu harbor with deck mounted .50 and 3″ guns (under tarp in the harbor but uncovered once they departed the harbor).

    Lots of ‘ghost nets’ distributed throughout the oceans. (A ghost net is when a portion of the net is cut off and not retrieved by the boat. A gill net may extend 25, even 40 miles in length. One end remains tied to the vessel. The net has radar buoys every mile or so. A portion is cut off when a freighter runs over it or the net chaffed through. Yet it continues to catch.)

    Of the latest aggressive posturing by China, I think the various seafaring nations (which look up to the U.S. to varying degrees) are quite hesitant to engage China in any meaningful way. China ignores strongly worded letters. Hopefully once past the upcoming election, President Trump will be in the mood to kick China. Like all bullies, China is also reluctant to fight. But they have to be called out first, otherwise they’ll only continue to expand.

    Aside from the obvious economic harm, there was the problem of by-catch and fish which escaped the nets but were damaged to the point of not being commercially viable.

    • I firmly believe that we will be in a shooting war with China within a couple of years. Maybe once that’s resolved, the whole national fishing fleet, issue can be resolved. But I’m still not optimistic.

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