From Phyllis to Maite
June 15th, 2016
The second Greenpeace ship, the Vega, sailed with the Phyllis Cormack, to protest whaling in 1975. That voyage gave rise to the Kwakiutl totem—a distinctly West Coast emblem depicting two orcas in the circle of life, displayed on nearly all Greenpeace vessels ever since.
Eventually the green-hulled, rainbow-adorned Rainbow Warrior, launched from Vancouver, became the flagship of Greenpeace. Few British Columbians realize there have been three Greenpeace vessels called Rainbow Warrior, as outlined in Rainbow Warriors: Legendary Stories from Greenpeace Ships (Between the Lines $24.95) by Maite Mompó.
The first Rainbow Warrior was famously bombed and sunk by French intelligence agents in Auckland, New Zealand, in 1985; a second Rainbow Warrior, on which Mompó sailed, was retired from service in 2011; a third set sail in October of 2011.
She recalls the most memorable Greenpeace adventures at sea, including the time she was jailed in Israel while protesting the Hadera coal-fired power plant.
To complement tales of nautical daring, Mompó provides countless photos from the Greenpeace archives, maps, and nautical charts, proving that Greenpeace ships have done more than help to end nuclear testing in the Pacific and block destructive fishing operations.
Other essential B.C.-based book about Greenpeace include Robert Hunter’s Greenpeace (M&S, 1972), with photos by Robert Keziere; Robert Hunter’s To Save a Whale: The Voyages of Greenpeace, with Rex Weyler; Hunter, Robert. Warriors of the Rainbow (Holt, Rinehart and Winston, 1979). Photos by Robert Keziere; Hunter, Robert. The Greenpeace to Amchitka: An Environmental Odyssey (Arsenal Pulp, 2004); Weyler, Rex. Greenpeace: How a Group of Ecologists, Journalists and Visionaries Changed the World (Raincoast, 2004); Interview with a Pirate: Captain Paul Watson (Firefly 2013), co-authored with Lamya Essemlali.