Target: Ash Carter, United States Secretary of Defense
Goal: Do not bypass the ban on using animals in military training.
The Department of Defense has sidestepped a ban preventing the use of animals for military training exercises. Six military medical training facilities committed to using simulators instead of live animals last year to prevent the animals from being unnecessarily stabbed and shot. PETA has confirmed that the United States Air Force is continuing to use animals in one of the training installations.
This is incredibly distressing, particularly when a military veteran has spoked out against the practice. Congressman Ted Lieu is a former U.S. Air Force Reserve lieutenant colonel and a decorated serviceman. In a letter to the DOD, Lieu spoke frankly in his belief that the practice of killing animals for training purposes is “unacceptable” and “abusive.”
Lieu also called out the DOD for issuing a waiver to allow the Air Force to continue the practice when the department itself has determined that it is not necessary. Per Lieu, the advances in DOD technology negate any need to use live animals when preparing our servicemen and women for battle.
We now have simulators that are superior to live animals for training our military personnel, so there is no reason why the DOD should have skirted the current ban. Let’s stand in solidarity with Representative Lieu and demand the DOD stop using animals for battlefield training.
Dear Secretary Carter,
I am horribly distressed to learn that the Department of Defense has bypassed a ban on using live animals as targets in one of its training installations. With modern simulators, there is no reason why animals should be maimed and killed during battlefield training. In fact, many would argue that the simulators do a better job of training military personnel, so your recent authorization to use animals despite the ban boggles the mind.
As Representative Ted Lieu has expressed to the DOD, abusing animals for training purposes is unnecessary with modern-day technology. The simulators do a better job of preparing our military personnel for battle, so this unnecessary and inhumane waiver to the ban is unacceptable. In fact, simulators could be programmed to mimic better the medical trauma our service members face on the battlefield.
Kindly keep this in mind and remove the waiver you have issued at one Air Force training facility. We cannot continue to perform severe acts of animal cruelty in our military training. We are far more advanced than that. Uphold the ban and use simulators in battlefield training.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: Dusan Bicanski