Because every life is valuable
And because morality is indivisible
Best regards to all, Venus
Because every life is valuable
And because morality is indivisible
Best regards to all, Venus
WAV Comment – see our other recent post on this issue:
It’s been weeks since our Investigators returned home from their deployment for the Festival of Sacrifice, and I just wanted to drop you a quick line to once again convey how grateful I am to you.
I am now able to speak to you about what we found in Indonesia as this investigation was made public through the media this week.
Because of your support, we have again been able to document and expose the brutal treatment and slaughter of Australian cattle in Indonesia, and lodge a legal complaint with the Department of Agriculture.
I won’t go into detail within this email, because I know that many of you prefer to be spared. But if you would like to read about what our Investigations Unit documented, you can do so in this media article, published yesterday.
It’s been eight years since I stood in a slaughterhouse in Indonesia and watched, with abject horror, the treatment that Australia’s live export industry had knowingly been supplying Australian animals to. I know for many of you, the images of one terrified animal who stood trembling as he watched his friends butchered around him, remain with you to this day.
‘Tommy’, the gentle Australian steer who we saw trembling in an Indonesian slaughterhouse in Indonesia, 2011.
What ‘Tommy’ endured — along with so many others — epitomised in the most tragic of ways, the callousness of Australia’s live export trade. The willingness of exporters to supply animals to brutal treatment was starkly exposed through that investigation, resulting in the then Gillard government implementing a new system of live export regulation.
The fact that Animals Australia has since had to police this ‘regulatory system’ in importing countries, is something that a charity should never have had to do. But I am proud that we have not shied from embracing the risks and challenges to be there for our animals, and call exporters to account. We’ve only ever been able to do this because of your support.
Once again, the critical nature of our investigative work is revealed through our recent evidence documented in Indonesia. Had we not been there, no-one would know that Australian cattle had been subjected to terrible ‘roping slaughter’ in the basement of a construction site.
Had we not been there, the exporter responsible, International Livestock Exports — recognised in the industry as the ‘cattle arm’ of the disgraced Emanuel Exports — would not now be under investigation and facing serious sanctions.
Had we not been there, the industry could have continued to operate, business as usual, as a law unto themselves.
So this is why I felt compelled to write to you today. Because had it not been for your caring and your generous support of our Investigations Unit, our team could not have been in Indonesia.
That such cruelty continues reveals exactly why live export, in its entirety, should end. Every piece of evidence we gather, whether in Indonesia, Kuwait, Vietnam or Egypt, continues to build that case.
There’s a reason why nearly a decade later, we still think about Tommy. For many people, coming face to face with him was the first insight they’d ever had into the fear and distress of animals raised and killed for food — the first time they were able to witness their desire not to be harmed.
Thank you for entrusting us with your faith and support and allowing us to dedicate every single moment to them. Thank you so much for your kind and generous heart.
Because of you, we can dedicate every day to Tommy and friends, and creating the kinder world that they so need and deserve.
Lyn White AM
Memories – a personal experience.
Many years back; 20 or more; the live animal export trade from the UK via English ports such as Dover, was at its peak. I used to travel down to Dover and other ports several times a week and do (undercover) monitoring of the (live animal export) trade. There were several of us at Dover and we all got together to wait for the livestock truck carrying ship(s) to arrive at the harbour late in the evening. They were special ships which had to be chartered because we had made some massive wins in getting the normal ferry companies to stop taking live animals to the continent. Animal transporters were banned from normal passenger ferries – people did not want to share their holiday crossing experience with animals going to their deaths; so those same people spoke out and the ferry companies buckled. That was a big win; but the trade did not stop entirely. The industry was forced to charter its own ships to take the trucks; along with the financial overheads that came with it.
The special (livestock transporter) boats usually arrived late in the evening; like 11pm or midnight. From our vantage points on the cliffs, we watched them arrive a few miles off the harbour at a section of the English Channel which is known as ‘The Downs’. From there they had to get a pilot to bring their ship into the harbour; that was fine with us – ship charter; paying for a pilot etc; all extra costs to the industry involved with live animals.
I took these following photos many years ago – some time on the odd occasion when the livestock ships had no choice but to dock during the daytime. In both you can clearly see the livestock transporters. This operation was normally undertaken under the cover of darkness in the middle of the night – away from the eyes of the public.
So late at night we (campaigners) congregated in a region up on the famous Dover White Cliffs which overlooked the harbour; at a place known as ‘Langdon’. We watched the ship come into the harbour under pilot control until it berthed at the far end (left pier) of the harbour. You can see the kind of view we had from the cliffs in this video:
On the left hand side of this video you can see the Eastern arm at which the ship photos above were taken.
At night, with all the lights in the harbour, it was impressive to say the least. A sort of ‘Close Encounters’ situation. Once the ship had docked on its usual left hand pier; we then had to hang around and wait for the rear doors on the ship to open and the ramp be lowered. Then was the first real signs of the nights trade for us – how many empty livestock trucks were going to discharge from the ship and make their way up to the local lairages to collect the animals; which had been specially brought down to these farms ready for export. Usually, most nights, we counted somewhere between 6 and 9; sometimes more, sometimes less.
One of the local farms (or ‘lairages’) where the animals were kept ready for export was also operating a business on the side as a caravan park. So, what do you do in such situations ? – you buy a caravan and place it in the farm caravan park; right next to the old pathway which the trucks used to get down to the animals sheds. With people there having a great nights caravanning !; and the use of mobile phones and a kettle for a cup of tea ; we could keep each other informed exactly of the trucks, their registration numbers; haulier, and type of animals they were carrying. Observers literally within a few feet of the transporters as they arrived empty, and left loaded with animals. It was a well organised arrangement; livestock trucks monitored from the minute they arrived at the harbour on the ship; all the way up to collect the animals at the lairage; and then still monitored at all times on the to their return to the harbour; where they were always greeted by a ‘reception group’ even at 2 or 3 in the early hours of the morning; who had been informed who exactly was on their way down. We never let up; they were monitored and tracked from the moment they arrived until the moment they left. Our system was good; very good.
Eventually, and to get a good view of the loading of the trucks onto the ship, we returned from our reception duties at the docks to Langdon up on the cliffs. Up there it was wild, dark and bleak; with the forever Dover cold wind blowing in off the English Channel. We kicked around; talked, drank hot tea and waited for all the trucks to load back onto the ship ready to head over to France and god knows where else. Sometimes the odd ‘lady of the night’ would appear and offer her services to some of the blokes. They were never taken up as we were decent folk and there was much more important things to do !
The whole exercise from unloading the empties off the ship, to driving up to the lairages, loading, and then getting back to the harbour to load the full animal transporters that had come back from the lairage usually took about 3-4 hours. It was always in the darkest of dark times of the night; the trade did not want to be seen by the general public – but they were; we watched their every move; and we always followed up with reports and publicity on what was happening in those ‘dark hours’.
Once all the full livestock trucks had loaded back onto the same ship that they arrived on; we sat and watched as the rear ramp and doors closed up; the signal that the ship was ready to leave the harbour once again with all the innocents on their final trip to god knows where.
Watching the loaded ship sail out of the harbour destined for France with what, 6, 8, 10 animal transporters loaded was always a difficult time for me personally. We had done everything we wanted to do each night; gathered the information and let the industry know that even at that time we were around; but for me also, we had failed the animals by allowing them to sail away to their deaths. Saving and stopping all the trucks was impossible; we knew it; but witnessing the situation always made you feel like you had let the animals down by not saving them. I was quite a big ‘U2’ fan at the time; and I always sat in my car up on the cliffs and played ‘Exit’ from the ‘Joshua Tree’ album – the haunting Bass and a time of real despair; as I watched the ship sail out of the harbour with its cargo of death. The music; the experience yet again; everything seemed to come together at that moment in time.
Music has a real power – often to be the right track at the right time to hold memories –‘Exit’ was right for the betrayal of animals that I witnessed so regularly at those cold, dark; upsetting nights at the docks. Even now; 20+ years later, that track (Exit) always takes me back to those cold and windy nights up on the cliffs watching the livestock carrier departing for France. That track always brings back that situation to me of being there and witnessing the suffering for a few pennies more. Sometimes I would stay on longer and watch – from high on the cliffs you could watch the ship sail across most of the Channel almost until it had arrived in Calais; what, some 23 miles away. Sad times, bad times, but in the end we stopped it completely at Dover. It felt good to be of the crew that did that !
In the UK people have always detested the live animal export trade. Part of our national way towards being an animal welfare nation I guess. Here are a few scenes from around Dover in the past of what good, decent folk will do to stop animal abuse with the animal exports:
For Jill – never forgotten:
The Netherlands is making the case, now the US is slowing down: by 2035, toxicity testing on mammals should be completely replaced by reliable animal-free methods. US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Chairman Andrew R. Wheeler has now released a new policy that the nationwide association Doctors Against Animal Experiments e.V.
Already in recent years, the US has been working increasingly on new and animal-free methods. This is now to be expanded strategically: a working group consisting of experts in the field of innovative, animal-free methods should develop a comprehensive plan within the next 6 months as to how this goal can be achieved.
From 01.01.2035, toxicity tests on animals should be prohibited and only possible in exceptional cases.
Both the existing and the new methods can “lead to the same or better biological prediction in a shorter time frame with fewer resources than the currently used animal models”, the directive states. Of course, this takes place in compliance with all necessary safety levels for people and the environment. The EPA promotes the research of animal-free methods while reducing the funding of animal experiments from taxpayers by 2025 by 30% or complete deletion from 2035.
As early as 2016, the Netherlands came up with a comprehensive plan to complete the replacement of regulatory safety tests for chemicals, food additives, pesticides, animal and human health products by 2025.
The fact that the US is developing a concrete exit plan is another great pleasure for Dipl.-Biologist Julia Radzwill of Doctors Against Animal Experiments: “If a country like the US, which has so many scientific innovations, develops an exit plan, this is an important signal and measures the animal-free methods finally the meaning they deserve – scientific and ethical. “
“Although studies show that results from animal testing on humans are not transferable and that human-based methods are not only reliable but also more cost-effective and deliver more results in less time, in Germany more than 99% of the funding is still in the ‘animal experimentation’ system. Invested incorrectly, ” explains biologist Radzwill.
Even if 16 years to complete implementation according to the medical association is a much too long period, in the US, in contrast to Germany, at least a specific date is envisaged and shortly a scientifically sound implementation plan is available.
Doctors against animal testing calls for a rethinking of the Federal Government in Germany, so that Germany does not miss the turn from a long-obsolete system to a future-oriented and human-based research.
My comment: The pharmaceutical industry predominantly carries out animal experiments. Today we know that there is a mafia behind the laboratory experiments.
Organized crime accounts for about $ 2 trillion a year. More than a trillion dollars is spent on drugs worldwide.
The 30 largest pharmaceutical companies in the world generate a turnover of 600 billion dollars! All are in cooperation with the World Health Organization (WHO)
The best thing that can happen to big pharmaceutical companies is the millions of paid collaboration with WHO: a dangerous network, and a lucrative friendship!
“The richest man is always the one who has the most powerful friends”.
The number of animal experiments is steadily increasing in Germany. They suffer from pharmaceutical industry institutes, universities and, last but not least, contract laboratories that poison thousands of primates, dogs and all sorts of animals a year for profit.
There is not only, but especially in Germany a popular combination of capital, state and lobbyists working with any industry that benefits from animal suffering. Recognizable how EU laws etc. are ignored and even broken. Recognizable also due to the poor implementation of the EU animal welfare law.
The catastrophe continues to grow with the help of politicians who make corporations more powerful and people more stupid.
Therefore, if animal experiments are abolished even in poorer countries, Germany will become the last country.
My best regards to all, Venus