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Deadline Looms for Trauma Training Phase-Out

Written by Michelle Kretzer | February 25, 2013

Update: Today, The Washington Post ran a cover story highlighting PETA’s efforts to stop the U.S. military from killing thousands of goats and pigs each year in crude medical training drills. As the newspaper points out, a bill that was signed into law last month requires the Department of Defense to submit to Congress by the end of this week a detailed strategy and timeline for the phase-out of these deadly exercises. This is the first time in history that Congress has passed a bill that protects animals from abuse in military training exercises. Please take a moment to write to the Department of Defense and urge it to act quickly to phase out these barbaric exercises.

Originally posted on January 4th

The year has just begun, but already 2013 has seen an exciting first for animals! President Barack Obama has just signed into law a bill that requires the Department of Defense (DOD) to create a strategy for replacing the shooting, stabbing, and dismembering of animals in military training drills with non-animal methods. This is the first time in history that Congress has passed a bill that seeks to protect animals from being abused in military training exercises.

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The Camera Shot Seen ‘Round the World

Last year, people were outraged when PETA released disturbing, never-before-seen undercover footage showing live goats as they were stabbed, had their organs yanked out, and had their limbs broken and cut off with tree trimmers during a military training drill, all while the animals moaned and kicked.

Multitudes of you contacted your representatives demanding that these archaic forms of “training” end and that the abusers who were caught on video be held accountable. You won. Under a provision in the newly signed National Defense Authorization Act, the secretary of defense has less than two months to present Congress with a strategy for phasing out the use of animals in trauma training. And the people who were caught on camera abusing goats were cited for violations of the Animal Welfare Act

Dummies Are Smarter

High-profile military veterans Oliver Stone, Bob Barker, and Gideon Raff have all joined you in asking the DOD to modernize its training program by replacing its deadly animal laboratories with more reliable methods such as human-patient simulators. These realistic models can breathe, bleed, talk, and even “die,” and trainees can perform procedures on them over and over again until they master lifesaving skills.

While this monumental law requires the secretary of defense to create a plan to phase out the use of animals, it does not mandate a specific date by which animal training methods must end. Help us keep the pressure on by e-mailing the secretary of defense and other DOD and Department of Homeland Security officials and urging them to switch to superior non-animal training methods immediately.

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  • ADRIANA MEYENBERG says:

    Es indignante que las fuerzas armadas lleguen a tal degradación de torturar a seres tan indefensos, por favor paren esto inmediatamente

  • Lisa says:

    Just when I think I’ve seen it all, or imagined it all … PETA uncovers more. I am so grateful to PETA and to EVERYONE here who reads this, for your ACTION in fighting animal cruelty. Please support every local animal anti cruelty force by volunterring, reporting incidents, sharing feelings w/ each other. We have no purpose in this life, if we only focus on ourselves. Thank you!

  • You're all idiots. says:

    It is important for our soldiers to have the most advanced medical training possible. If you haven’t been to combat, you shouldn’t judge. It’s just a goat.

  • Tan says:

    I’m sorry GLP – but I do not see how torturing an animal is in any way training them to save lives. Was the goat trained to stalk up behind them, attack them from a hidden space, use a weapon against them? So unless they’re practicing these methods to use against the helpless, I do not see the point. How on earth does a tree trimmer come into it – are they planning for the unlikely even of an attack while doing garden maintenance. Ridiculous and absurd training methods. I’d be ashamed.

  • Mimi says:

    The introduction of the cut suit was a big help in ending military trauma training on animals combined with PETA and all of us who support alternatives. I also sent a letter to my Senator about offering EMT classes to the soldiers who are interested in providing medical care. If our tax dollars are going to be spent why not use the money for our soldiers in school training without live animals? I heard that there were some cities that allowed a ride along with the Fire Department where soldiers could also observe and watch the techniques used to help humans in traumatic situations, gun shot wounds, knife, car wreck….. Someone asked me well would you want someone helping you that didn’t practice on a live animal first? I said absolutely yes. Animals anatomy differ, and those who have practiced on a animal previously have commented there was a huge difference when it came down to a human. If they practiced on the cut suit first, or have taken EMT classes I would trust these individuals more so than those who practiced on an animal. I’m not a goat, doesn’t that say enough?

  • Teri Cotter says:

    It doesn’t take a rocket scientiest to know how to stab someone to death or cut out their organs. To do this to thousands of animals is DEPLORABLE! I am one to stand behind our soldiers, but not at the expense of the deaths of animals. This is a disgusting practice and I find that it is UNEXCUSABLE to hear that the U.S. has be exercising such barbaric practices.

  • GLP says:

    The simulators don’t provide the level of training needed to provide realistic training that saves the lives of our soldiers. This kind of training only has one purpose, to save lives. Its a sad day for the lives that could have been saved. I don’t think the majority of people who will read my words grasp how this impacts the people who serve in the military, not the soldiers who sit in an office or work on large bases in war zones but the soldiers who put themselves in harms way. I’m sure some of you don’t care or will consider my opinion acceptable.

  • Vladimir says:

    eventually these outrageous methods will be replaced!!!

  • Maria says:

    This news makes me sooo happy! yayy! its definately a step in the right direction.

  • Peachy Sarmiento says:

    I respectfully request the US military to make an immediate timetable, at the earliest date, to remove the US military’s trauma training exercises on live goats (and animals). This method is inhumane and violates the animal welfare act. This also desensitizes those who commit such cruel and inhumane acts. Performers of this act become criminals, as modern psychology teaches, and as exemplified by deceased criminal Jeffrey Dahmer. As a child, he started torturing and maiming the limbs of cats and dogs, but eventually, he was desensitized to the pain that he inflicted on animals, he moved on torturing before killing humans. Any urgent move on this matter will be highly appreciated

  • valerie bobincheck says:

    This must be implemented immediately. How can we expect our military to behave according to the Geneva Convention if this kind of training is upheld, mandated and used as a desensitizing device.

  • Jill Sajtar says:

    Finally! This was a horrible and disturbing practice of our military and one so un necessary! I am so grateful for those who were able to pressure this and mandate this change. No technique is worth torturing an innocent and helpless animal for.

  • Avelina Pereira says:

    Barak Obama is a great being.

  • Marlen arciniega says:

    Poor animals they shouldn’t be used for training …

  • belen maroto says:

    stop cruelty

  • Sandra Faucher says:

    Please Sir, stop all animal abuse.. a great country is judged by how they treat their animals and a great President would be remembered by how he let animals be treated. Thank you.

  • susanna says:

    This is a great step towards humane methods. Thank you, President Obama!

  • Nina says:

    Wonderful news :)

  • Vanessa says:

    Thank you Jesus for having President Barack Obama sign that bill!

  • Miki Haas says:

    How deplorable for animals and humans to experience. Animal abuse and cruelty beyond words and I’m sure a reason why many of our are men and women come back into society emotionally and psychiatrically scarred.

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