Written by PETA
Once upon a more barbaric time, the U.S. space program forced terrified primates to be "astronauts," sending them into space, where some were roasted to death in their capsules. Although most countries with active space exploration programs have relegated cruel tests on primates to the dustbin of history, Iran recently announced plans to send a live monkey into space this summer. The disturbing news prompted PETA U.K. to blast off a letter to the head of Iran's space program urging him to ground its primate experimentation program and instead use more humane and effective options such as the state-of-the-art human simulator already in use at the International Space Station.
In the letter, PETA U.K. points out that cruel tests on nonhuman primates do not produce relevant results for human astronauts and that the prestigious European Space Agency has stated that it "declines any interest in monkey research and does not consider any need or use for such result."
Last year, PETA convinced NASA to scrap plans to fund experiments on monkeys after the misguided program was widely condemned by scientists, physicians, NASA engineers, and the public.
Let's hope that Iran's space agency will join the 21st century and make its monkey experimentation program history.
Written by Heather Faraid Drennan
Victory Update: Following a year of vigorous campaigning, PETA has learned that government officials have grounded plans for a cruel and ineffective radiation experiment on monkeys. Learn more about this victory for monkeys.
The European Space Agency (ESA) is light years ahead of NASA in the compassion, technology, and common-sense departments. In a recent letter to Animal Defenders International, Jean-Jacques Dordain, the ESA's director general, stated that the ESA "declines any interest in monkey research and does not consider any need or use for such result."
So in other words, the European equivalent of NASA is saying that experimenting on monkeys is useless! That's pretty much exactly what PETA has been saying all along about NASA's cruel plan to fund an experiment in which as many as 30 squirrel monkeys would be blasted with radiation and confined for the rest of their lives so that researchers could observe the devastating results. The ESA recently launched its sophisticated Mars500 project, which includes a 520-day-long experiment on six human volunteers and simulates the conditions of a trip to Mars.
We're applauding the ESA's staunch stance against these archaic and inhumane experiments and are keeping the pressure on NASA. Just today, PETA members dressed as Trekkies protested at the debut of NASA's Star Trek Live stage show at the Kennedy Space Center to urge the space agency to let monkeys live long and prosper:
You can join the protest by contacting the Brookhaven National Laboratory and urging it to halt plans to irradiate monkeys for this NASA-funded experiment.
Let's hope that this pressure from Trekkies, taxpayers, and NASA's overseas counterpart convinces the agency to finally move out of the Dark Ages and into the Space Age by dropping cruel and crude animal experiments in favor of humane and effective modern technologies that are actually relevant to human astronauts.
Written by Lindsay Pollard-Post
you have a general question for PETA and would like a response, please e-mail Info@peta.org. If you need to report cruelty to
an animal, please click
here. If you are reporting an animal in imminent danger and know where to find the
animal and if the abuse is taking place right now, please call your local
police department. If the police are unresponsive, please call PETA
immediately at 757-622-7382 and press 2.
Follow PETA on Twitter!
Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights? Read more.