How would you feel, if you knew your name had been placed on a list on the Internet, and someone with nefarious purposes in mind was encouraging terrorists to attack you? What if someone painted a target on your back, and encouraged people to “get you.”
Is that a concept that beggars the imagination? Unfortunately, It’s not far fetched at all.
And it’s happening in South Dakota right now.
As related in the New York Times yesterday:
After something of a hiatus, the animal rights movement has resumed a decades-old guerrilla war against the fur industry with a vengeance — and hints of more to come.
“Fur is just a gateway product,” Mr. Whelan said. “They’re against the production of leather, meat, wool, poultry, dairy. The reason they’re after the fur industry is because it’s low-lying fruit.”
Mr. Young quite agrees. “This really isn’t about fur in particular; it’s about animal exploitation,” he said. “If cows were able to survive in the wild and had a natural habitat, we’d release cows. Unfortunately, you can’t release a cow, so we have to release mink.”
Not that cows are not on the animal rights agenda. In August, a group called Iowans for Animal Liberation poured red paint over the Iowa butter cow, a life-size cow carved in butter that is a highlight of the state fair, to symbolize the blood animals shed on the way to being eaten, worn and otherwise exploited.
But for those who release animals from captivity, fur, and especially mink, appears to deliver the most bang for the buck.
The latest burst of raids appears to stem in part from an anonymous posting on a blog this summer of an updated list of mink and fox farms and research facilities first issued in 1996. The new list, called The Final Nail #4, includes addresses, instructions on how to free animals from cages and avoid detection, and a most-wanted list of desirable targets.
A new flurry of activity – based on an updated list of targets and a how to manual.
On June 1st, 2013, after being compiled by animal activists acting anonymously, “The Final Nail #4” was released on the internet “Just in time for Fur Raiding season” as one web site posting the document mused. What were the stated goals of the authors?
The Final Nail #4 offers these updates:
- Over 100 new fur farms since #3
- Specific details on fur farm layout (gathered from on-site investigations)
- Analysis of weak links in the industry
The spirit and function of The Final Nail is needed now more than ever. In a time when the climate in the movement has shifted from offensive to defensive, from a conversation on what we’re going to do to stop them to what they’re doing to stop us, from a time of ALF actions at a rate of one every two weeks to one of movement-wide paralysis inspired by rampant fear-mongering, The Final Nail represents a return to the essence of the ALF and the warrior model: the where, the how, and purpose that transcends all obstacles and fears.
To the rebirth of The Final Nail, and swift death of the fur industry.
What do they seek to accomplish? The leaders in the movement have seen diminished activity after successful prosecutions, and a lack of attention being paid by the general public. And as noted, “they’re seeking a return to the essence of the Animal Liberation Front and the Warrior model.”
What they’re seeking is nothing but the complete destruction of a section of agriculture & industry.
And as stated above, they don’t consider the release of mink & other fur bearing animals as the end all of their movement, but the low hanging fruit as targets of domestic terrorism against agriculture and it’s producers.
In other words, they’d go after cows if they could. And they’re starting anew with fur.
The South Dakota Connection
But what about the South Dakota connection? Here’s the part that should cause us concern.
The group of animal rights terrorists anonymously producing the hit list for the myriad animal terrorism cells performing the raids has come up with a list of seven targets across the state they’ve encouraged their followers to raid, criminally destroying property, and potentially robbing producers of their livelihoods.
But those aren’t the only effects.
For these producers, there are other very real aspects to consider. A need for heightened personal security measures to protect their property. Added expenses for taxpayers from a law enforcement aspect. And a general sense of doom for potentially being next on the animal raider’s hit list.
It CAN and HAS happened here.
Think it can’t happen in South Dakota? Don’t. It already has. Today marks the 16th Anniversary of South Dakota’s most egregious incident of Ag/Eco-terrorism.
On Oct. 17, 1997, someone cut a 20-foot section of fence and released about 3,000 mink at the former Turbak Mink Ranch near Kranzburg. The mink — valued at $90,000 — got loose early in the morning. Some were recaptured; many died before they could be corralled.
The former owners said the loss played a part in the eventual closure of their business.
Elshere said restitution was part of the federal case. “Whether or not they’ve seen any of that money, I don’t know,” she said.
The sentencing judge ordered $254,840 in restitution. Young also was given one year of supervised release and 360 hours of community service.
Over $250,000 in damage expenses. A farmer’s livelihood ruined. But for these eco-terrorists – the human costs be damned.
They just don’t care who suffers for their cause, as long as they can make an example.
And it’s coming to a South Dakota farm near you.
Watch for part 2 of this story series, where we will be taking a closer look at the human cost.