1. "Hey, aren’t human beings animals too?"
2. "PETA shows its stripes with letter to Arafat" (LA Daily News, Feb. 21, 2003)
3. "Arafat gets asinine plea from PETA" (Virginia Pilot, Feb. 10, 2003)
[Note by Tom Gross]
On January 26, Palestinian terrorists booby-trapped a donkey and sent it towards a group of Israelis at a bus stop south of Jerusalem, hoping to kill and maim as many as possible. The two bombs attached to the donkey were detonated simultaneously by two cellphones. Fortunately for the Israeli bus passengers, the donkey exploded before it reached them and no one was physically injured, although ambulance crews treated a number of people for shock.
Earlier this month, Ingrid Newkirk, president of the American animal rights group PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) wrote to Palestinian Authority chairman Yasser Arafat: "Your Excellency, We have received many calls and letters from people shocked at the bombing. If you have the opportunity, will you please add to your burdens my request that you appeal to all those who listen to you to leave the animals out of the conflict?"
She was then asked by the Washington Post whether she would also criticize the attempt by the Palestinian perpetrators to kill Israeli civilians but she said it was not her business to do so. In January 2003 – the month in which the donkey died – 21 Israelis and eight foreign nationals were killed by Palestinian terrorists in Israel, and 127 others were injured.
Many in America have been "sickened" that PETA would condemn the Palestinians' use of donkeys as bomb delivery devices, but fail to also condemn the bombing of Israelis. "Hey, aren't human beings animals too?" said one woman who announced she is withdrawing her financial support for PETA. "Apparently, PETA doesn't feel that Israelis have the right not to be blown up in restaurants, busses, shopping malls, wedding halls, and even their own homes."
For the record, obviously unknown to PETA, Palestinian groups have used bomb-laden donkeys in previous attacks:
* In the Gaza Strip in June 2001, a Palestinian drove a donkey cart laden with explosives toward a group of Israelis. At the last minute he jumped off the cart and detonated the bombs that exploded only partially. The cart had been loaded with four gas canisters, two mines, a bag of oil, and a bag of nails.
* In January 2001, terrorists left a donkey cart laden with explosives unattended near the Netzarim junction. Israeli soldiers fired at the cart, detonating the large amount of explosives and killing the donkey.
* In June 1995, a Palestinian suicide bomber detonated a donkey-led cart rigged with explosives near an IDF base near Khan Yunis. No soldiers were wounded in the blast, but the Palestinian and the donkey were killed.
I attach two articles below:
1. "PETA shows its stripes with letter to Arafat" (Los Angeles Daily News, February 21, 2003). Caring about donkeys but refusing to condemn the murder of Israelis "is tantamount to a contractors association bemoaning the wreckage of buildings and ignoring the bodies inside," says the writer.
2. "Arafat gets asinine plea from PETA" (By Kerry Dougherty, The Virginia Pilot, February 10, 2003). "Newkirk seems to be begging the Palestinians not to stop the slaughter, but rather to find a different delivery system for their bombs," Dougherty writes.
-- Tom Gross
PETA SHOWS ITS STRIPES WITH LETTER TO ARAFAT
PETA shows its stripes with letter to Arafat
The Los Angeles Daily News
February 21, 2003
For decades I have looked on as animal-rights activists crusaded against veal, against rigid confinement for poultry and against medical research conducted on myriad living things that don't happen to be human.
I have watched them splatter paint on mink-wearing matrons.
And I have seen these passionate souls chain themselves to department store entryways in hopes of saving sables and seals and chinchillas everywhere.
But today it is too much. Today, in wartime, the whale-lovers and chimp-saviors have crossed over into the territory of blatant bad taste.
It started with a letter from Ingrid Newkirk, president of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, to Yasser Arafat, Palestinian Authority chairman (always photographed in olive drab sans even fur collar).
Simply put, Newkirk's note called attention to a Jerusalem terror bombing last month in which explosives were concealed on a donkey. Some Palestinian thug hit a detonator, charges went off and the donkey was blown to pieces. There were no human casualties.
'We have received many calls and letters from people shocked at the bombing,' PETA's leader wrote Arafat. 'If you have the opportunity, will you please add to your burdens my request that you appeal to all those who listen to you to leave the animals out of the conflict?'
Obviously, for the price of the same stamp, Newkirk could also have asked Arafat to use his influence to leave humans 'out of the conflict.' But, no, the subject was donkeys – and even PLO cats left in Arafat's compound to dodge Israeli bulldozers.
All this to save four-legged noncombatants when so-called Palestinian martyrs – teenagers and young adults who pack their bodies with dynamite – are the real animals of the Middle East.
Truly, Newkirk's letter throws mud on the graves of so many innocent Israeli parents and children whose lives were taken by bloodthirsty fanatics. Further, PETA's moralizer-in-chief pelted decency in the face when asked to persuade Arafat to help stop the bombing of civilians.
'It's not my business,' Newkirk was quoted as saying, 'to inject myself into human wars.'
So that's it. Her brief on behalf of suffering and death stops with donkeys. Or cats. Maybe camels slain by stray shrapnel. No satirist – not Mort Sahl or Bill Maher or Richard Pryor – could come close to such callous conceit. It is tantamount to a contractors association bemoaning the wreckage of buildings and ignoring the bodies inside.
ARAFAT GETS ASS-ININE PLEA FROM PETA ON INTIFADA
Arafat gets ass-inine plea from PETA on intifada
By Kerry Dougherty
February 10, 2003
Every so often, I violate my own policy against giving PETA – People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals – the publicity it desperately desires and doesn't deserve.
I do this whenever the Norfolk-based animal rights group does something so astonishing, it simply can't be ignored.
This is one of those times.
But our story doesn't begin in Norfolk. It begins in Israel.
On Jan. 26, a bomb exploded on the road between Jerusalem and the settlement of Gush Etzion.
As terror attacks go, this one was minor. Most of us didn't hear about it because, with the exception of a few bus passengers treated for shock, no one was injured.
Palestinian terrorists delivered the bomb to its destination by donkey. They strapped explosives and a remote device to the animal and detonated the bomb by cell phone as an Israeli bus passed by.
The donkey, of course, was killed.
You know where this is going, don't you?
That's right. PETA, the group that never before expressed concern about the carnage in Israel, is suddenly outraged.
All because a donkey died.
Never mind that, according to the Israeli embassy, which keeps track of such grim statistics, 729 Israelis have perished in terrorist attacks since September 2000.
It took the death of a donkey for PETA to find its voice.
Leave the animals out of it, they cry.
Determined to make Hampton Roads look like a breeding ground for wackos to the rest of the world, PETA President Ingrid Newkirk this week fired off a fax to Yasser Arafat.
She began the letter with a polite salutation: "Your Excellency."
I can think of lots of titles for Arafat. Excellency isn't among them.
But I digress.
"...We have received many calls and letters from people shocked at the bombing ... in which a live donkey, laden with explosives, was intentionally blown up.
"All nations behave abominably in many ways when they are fighting their enemies, and animals are always caught in the crossfire. The U.S. Army abandoned thousands of loyal service dogs in Vietnam. (Odd. No mention of our dead soldiers, MIAs, POWs or even loyal South Vietnamese allies who were left behind, but again, I digress.)
"Al-Qaeda and the British government have both used animals in hideously cruel biological weaponry tests."
Brace yourselves. It gets worse.
"We watched on television as stray cats in your own compound fled as best they could from Israeli bulldozers"
Fleeing cats! PETA confronts the horror of war.
"Animals claim no nation. They are in perpetual involuntary servitude to all humankind, and, although they pose no threat and own no weapons, human beings always win the undeclared war against them...
"If you have the opportunity," Newkirk beseeched Arafat, "will you please add to your burdens my request that you appeal to all those who listen to you to leave the animals out of this conflict?" In other words, Newkirk seems to be begging the Palestinians not to stop the slaughter, but rather to find a different delivery system for their bombs.
Perhaps Ms. Newkirk would prefer that the Palestinians used suicide bombers instead of burros. Oh, that's right, they usually do.
Lisa Lange, PETA's vice president of communications, told me yesterday that Newkirk's letter was written after their offices had been bombarded with calls from PETA members who had learned of the donkey bomb.
Lange said it's PETA's philosophy that human cruelty often begins with animal cruelty.
The Washington Post this week asked Ms. Newkirk if she had "considered asking Arafat to persuade those who listen to him to stop blowing up people as well" as animals.
Her response should be required reading for all would-be members of PETA:
"It's not my business to inject myself into human wars," Newkirk told the Post.
How does one respond to such moral ambiguity?
How about a body count of human bodies?
In January 2003 – the month in which the donkey died – 21 Israelis and eight foreign nationals were killed by terrorists in Israel, and 127 others were injured.
Yet PETA weeps for the ass.
Radio talk show host Tony Macrini got it right when he remarked recently that "PETA" was an acronym for "People Embarrassing the Tidewater Area."
One can only hope that Newkirk left off her Norfolk return address on that asinine letter to Arafat.