Animal Defenders International

 

Animal Defenders International

ADI outrage at US Marine throwing puppy to its death in Iraq

Posted: 6 March 2008

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A video posted online, shows a smiling US Marine in combat gear, laughing then throwing a squealing puppy over a cliff in Iraq to its certain death. The Marine comments whilst doing so, in a child-like voice: “Cute little puppy, huh? Oh so cute, so cute little puppy.” At least one other soldier witnessed the cruelty.

Marine Corps Base Hawaii is currently investigating the incident as the perpetrator in the video is purported to be as a Lance Corporal with 1st Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment, a Hawaii Marine whose unit returned from Iraq in October.

The Marine Corps have stated: “The content of the video is deplorable and contrary to the high standards we expect of every Marine at home and abroad.”

Jan Creamer, ADI Chief Executive, commented: “The US Marine who performed this barbaric act, slaughtering an innocent puppy as a joke, is a disgrace to his uniform and to his country. The idea of committing such a cruel act on a defenceless young pup is totally alien to the ethics and honour of any Marine on duty. He should be dishonourably discharged and prosecuted, with the severest sentence handed out to him, as he has committed a heinous crime against a helpless animal.”

Furthermore, the actions of the marines are in flagrant breach of the Code of Federal Regulations of the Animal Welfare Act, Title 9, Chapter 1, Subchapter A Subsection 2.131 which clearly states that “Physical abuse shall not be used to train, work, or otherwise handle animals.”

ADI’s San Francisco office was quick to respond with letters calling for action to the US Department of Defence and the Marine Corps and letters were sent to the US Embassies in London and Colombia.

There is concern that the incident reflects a dangerous level of desensitisation of some serving in Iraq. Psychologists have acknowledged that those who commit sadistic acts to animals are also likely to behave violently with vulnerable people such as children. Such was the case with Steven D. Green who was convicted of raping and killing a 14 year old Iraqi girl and her family. He also had an alleged record of animal abuse similar to that depicted in the video in question.

However, other soldiers retain their compassion.

The video clip is a stark contrast to the story of another marine from the Hawaii base, Lieutenant Colonel Jay Kopelman, who along with other battle hardened marines, saved a street puppy called Lava in Iraq – published as the book “From Baghdad, with Love.” And the Marines report other such gestures of compassion.

All the more reason why there must be zero tolerance for the behaviour of this violent and cruel thug.

The Marine Corps Responds

Images from the video

Who to contact to express your concern

Contact ADI USA

The shocking video - WARNING this is very distressing

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