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In a huge victory for vervet monkeys, U.S. military officials have confirmed that the Army is ending cruel and archaic monthly training exercises at the Aberdeen Proving Ground in which monkeys are poisoned with a drug overdose that makes them suffer from violent seizures in a crude demonstration of the effects of nerve-agent exposure. Instead of abusing terrified monkeys, Aberdeen—the only Army base in the country that uses animals for this training—will now use human patient simulators, just as every other military facility already does. The move follows months of vigorous campaigning by PETA.
PETA’s campaign against the barbaric chemical casualty training exercises included a series of protests this week outside the annual meeting of the Association of the United States Army. Supporters of this effort included veterans, physicians, active service members, and actor Woody Harrelson, who sent a letter on PETA’s behalf to Army Chief of Staff Ray Odierno. Many others have also been protesting at Army recruitment centers, flooding the offices of Army officials with e-mails and phone calls, and even gathering outside the homes of Army officials affiliated with the monkey lab. One PETA member even disrupted a speaking event last week by Aberdeen’s commanding general, Nick Justice.
Please send an e-mail to Maj. Gen. Nick Justice to thank him for this compassionate decision and ask that he ensure that the transition to simulators be made immediately.
Written by Heather Faraid Drennan