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Logic & Scientific Philosophy

Greenpeace Oil Rig Protest Logic – Emily


30 Greenpeace activists were attempting to seize a drilling platform to the north of Russia

Vladimir Putin accused them of piracy

Therefore, they are pirates

In this argument neither the form nor the argument is valid. To begin with the form is not valid because the conclusion is not true. On top of that it does not fit in with any of the forms and does not have clear X, Y, and Z. The premises of this argument are also not factually correct because although the Greenpeace activists were accused of piracy, they are not pirates. Pirate being defined as “A person who attacks and robs ships at sea.” (the freedictionnary.com). Since this argument is neither valid nor factually correct, it is not sound.

The logic from this argument stems from the fact that Greenpeace activists boarded a high hazard Arctic oil rig with plans to stop its operations. Russian coastguards stormed the operation and began to round up the activists with knives and guns. They were then held on the boat until Russia decided to charge them with piracy with the support of Gazprom, the oil company that owns the rig that Greenpeace was trying to shut down. It was later revealed that Russia stopped Greenpeace’s argument because the any unauthorized action on the drilling platform could lead to an accident.

Now, this causes quite a stir for Greenpeace, who claims that they were just staging a peaceful protest. They still do not have much news from the activists, but a piracy conviction can carry a fine up to $15,000 and jail time.



2 thoughts on “Greenpeace Oil Rig Protest Logic – Emily

  1. Hi Emily, cool story (if a little rough on the Greenpeace folk!),

    How do you think the lawyers of the activists might approach their defense? Logically speaking, of course…

    Mr. J

    Posted by bryanjack | September 27, 2013, 11:23 pm
    • Hi Mr. Jackson. Thanks for your comment. I find it interesting that throughout this event, Greenpeace hasn’t offered up much other than saying that it’s protest was peaceful. Unfortunately the 30 Greenpeace activists have also refused to testify so it is difficult for an outsider to fully understand what was and is going on. The lawyers of the activists might decide to go on a technicality of the law because although the Greenpeace activists are accused of piracy, even Putin has now admitted that they are not pirates. Alternatively the lawyers might decide to go with the fact that although Greenpeace had the intention of shutting down the oil rig, there is no way to prove it and nothing ended up happening. Despite all the uncertainty for Greenpeace this seems like an interesting case and we’ll see where it goes.

      Posted by emilysaint05 | September 30, 2013, 6:10 am

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