Why we must stop the slaughter- H&MD

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Hello all, this got very little reaction on Countryside. Thought I'd see what you folks thought of this.

Drudge Report today says FEMA is preparing to exercise mass slaughter in the event FMD hits the US. Maybe we should be making our own preparations.....


Normality will return to the stricken countryside when we accept that healthy farm animals should never be killed, sick animals should always be healed, and the disease, wherever it is, should just be left to run its natural course. So long as Slaughter remains the response to FMD then the fear of the disease, and the fear of spreading the disease, will remain. That means the rural shops will stay empty, the parks will remain closed, and people will be afraid to move. If we Stop the Slaughter, we Stop the Panic.

Everyone depends on getting the Slaughter stopped now and letting nature take its course. That means farmers, rural businesses, and all their supporters must unite to STOP THE SLAUGHTER.

Why are most farmers not resisting? Here are the main reasons:

- THEY ARE BEING LED TO THE SLAUGHTER, quite literally, and however unwittingly, by their leadership. Farmers are not receiving the leadership which will allow them to confront and Stop the Slaughter.

- THEY DO NOT KNOW THE FACTS, and are only being told that FMD is something akin to the Black Death. The "gruesome" details of the "horrific" disease are being played up to make the farmer think that it is kinder to fire a bolt through a cow's head than nurse its blistered tongue!


Talk of "firebreaks" and "firewalls" has the effect of dramatising the problem, creating fear, spreading panic, inducing hysteria and stampeding the farmers over the precipice. Imagine the difference if, when the disease broke, the Government had calmly said something like, "We have a Foot and Mouth outbreak. This is not a killer disease. In fact, it is a relatively minor one. It can be healed through the application of basic husbandry techniques. Almost all animals recover. It is, of course, an inconvenience.

Exports are going to suffer in the short term. That's a pity, but we are just going to have to let this disease run its natural course." Life would have continued very much as normal.


When the overall atmosphere is one of general ignorance of the facts - with all the related fear, panic, and hysteria attached - then most farmers, naturally, are reluctant to stand out against the mass slaughter policy for fear of being blamed for making matters worse. Moreover, they look around themselves and see the so-called "experts", the "men from the Ministry", vets, police and even the Army, and they are, quite naturally, intimidated into just going along with the policy.

Here are the main facts you need to know about FMD:

- FMD is curable through basic husbandry techniques such as isolation, and the application of salty water to the infected areas, and Stockholm tar, which is a lotion used widely on most animal wounds.

- FMD does not necessarily affect all the animals in the herd or flock.

- Afflicted animals almost always recover and become immune to that strain of the infection. This builds herd immunity and means they are more resistant the next time the disease strikes. The much-touted "weight loss" is something the animal will get over in a matter of weeks.

The only herdsman in Britain ever to have nursed sick animals back to health was Henry Hamilton, the manager of the Duke of Westminster's herd in the 1922-24 outbreak. He wrote his experiences in 1967 and reported that cattle which had the infection in November 1923 were winning prizes at the Royal Show 8 months later. (See Charles Clover, "Old cowmen's cure saved duke's pedigree herd", The Daily Telegraph 21-3-01, p. 6, and posted at www.whatareweswallowing.com)

- Death occurs only in a maximum 5% of cases and then only in weak animals such as the very young and the very old.

Given these basic facts, it is patently obvious that the alternative to killing healthy animals is not to kill healthy animals and the alternative to killing animals with a curable illness is to help them recover.

The Slaughter is:

- Destroying Family Farming

This is not only an animal welfare concern, it is also a human welfare concern. Already severely threatened by the global financial system, this will be the final blow for many family farms throughout Britain and the land will pass in its entirety to the global multi-national, agri-businesses which have been moving in over the last 30 years.

- Destroying Rural and Tourist Businesses

The entire rural infrastructure depends upon a successful local farming industry. The fear of the disease, and the fear of spreading the disease, is shutting down the countryside.

- Destroying Pedigree Herds

Pedigree herds take decades to evolve and are irreplaceable. Already, several of Britain's most notable herds and flocks have been wiped from the map.

- Destroying Hefted Stock

Many hill sheep have evolved a "hefting" instinct, which means that the flocks have roamed only upon their particular part of the hill or mountain for decades and don't require fences. This instinct has taken, in some cases, centuries, to evolve and is lost forever when these animals are needlessly slaughtered. Some hill farms in Scotland have already had their hefted herds slaughtered. Hefted herds cannot be reintroduced, and the only way to contain any future sheep would be through fencing, which raises environmental issues.

-Destroying Rare Breeds

The cull in the Lake District threatens Herdwicks, Rough Fells and Swaledale sheep. These sheep are also hefted. In Cumbria, sheepdogs, llamas and pedigree alpacas are all being killed. Mabie Farm Park in Dumfries has had all its rare kunekune pigs slaughtered. The 5000 animals which have grazed the Forest of Dean in Gloucestershire for centuries are to be slaughtered along with all the rare breeds at an adventure park in the same county. Animal Rights Activists, we need you! RSPCA, we need you! The Slaughter is illogical, unscientific, inhumane, uneconomic, and possibly illegal:

- Illogical

The spread of any disease can occur in 3 stages. Stage 1 is when an outbreak occurs with no secondary spread to other areas. Only at this stage may a policy of "isolate and destroy" make any sense. Stage 2 is when the disease spreads to areas of secondary infection. At that point "isolate and destroy" becomes absurd since the only logic is to keep widening the control areas and slaughtering more and more animals. In this case, the cure is worse than the disease! Stage 3 is when the disease becomes uncontainable. We are presently applying a Stage 1 solution to a Stage 2 problem. - Unscientific Slaughtering animals which have had the disease reduces herd immunity thereby leaving the remaining animals more vulnerable. We are only going to make it worse next time the disease hits. That is because infections are more serious in man and animals when introduced into a virgin population, that is, one that has never experienced that particular microbe. Normal populations which have been exposed to diseases, even serious ones, are likely to be more resistant to it and better equipped to overcome it. The present Slaughter policy ensures that we keep virgin populations of animals which, never having met the disease, are always going to be susceptible.

If the disease is carried on birds which migrate and cross the channel then it is also unscientific to imagine that we can keep the country immune.

However, there is no direct evidence that it is carried this way, or even that it is carried by human beings. The Independent on Sunday (25-3-01) reported on a technical meeting for journalists, which had been presented by MAFF on Friday 23rd March. The journalist Geoffrey Lean wrote: "There was no evidence from anywhere, it was admitted, that walkers passed on the disease, despite the closure of footpaths: indeed, the risk that even the vets who tended the sick animals would pass it on, was 'remote'. By contrast the possibility that smoke from the incineration of animals could carry the disease was now being investigated." (Geoffrey Lean, 'Now the truth is out, it's time for a revolution', Independent on Sunday, 25-3-01, p. 14) It is not even clear if the disease can be spread in wind.

Dr Jim Hutchison, a former director of the Birmingham Public Health Laboratory has written, "It is said that wind may spread the virus. For various reasons I rather doubt it, but has anyone ever done any air sampling for the virus, down wind? If not, why not, and settle the matter? Surely the technology is there, I have used various techniques in the distant past to demonstrate bacteria and viruses in the air." (Letter to Dr. Jim Scudamore, Chief Vet, 11-3-01)

- Inhumane

It is wrong to kill healthy animals, unless for food or clothing. In fact, there are laws against animal cruelty and you can go to prison for it.

Moreover, it is wrong to kill animals which have a curable illness. Animals are being killed in conditions of chaos, while they stampede in panic, and while they witness each other being killed. Even sheepdogs are being killed!

- Uneconomic

A "justification" for the cull is to restore disease-free status in order to protect the export market. However, the money made in meat exports is already outweighed by the massive cost it is taking to deal with the infection, and the billions which are being lost in the rural and tourist industries. The economic cut off point has already been reached. There is no economic point in continuing.

- Illegal

Farmers are within their legal rights to refuse to sign any documentation giving the State approval to engage in a pre-emptive cull. Alastair Campbell, the Prime Minister's spokesman, has already admitted that slaughter of animals which do not have FMD can only be done "with the consent of farmers." Alastair Campbell said they are hoping to "persuade" farmers to co-operate. (George Jones and David Brown, "'Firebreak' slaughter in disarray", The Daily Telegraph, 27-3-01, p. 1). There is NO emergency legislation which will enable the government to take compulsory slaughter powers. FARMERS WHOSE ANIMALS DO NOT HAVE FMD CAN LEGALLY REFUSE TO HAVE THEM SLAUGHTERED. IF YOU ARE A FARMER WHOSE STOCK DOES NOT HAVE FMD THEN DO NOT SIGN ANYTHING WHICH WILL ALLOW THE STATE TO KILL YOUR ANIMALS. YOU HAVE NO LEGAL OBLIGATION TO SIGN THEIR DOCUMENTS.

Another certainty is that as the months and years go by, reports and books will be written on this period which will demonstrate conclusively that the mass slaughter policy was flawed. At that point the people presently engaged in executing the slaughter policy will find themselves open to prosecution and massive compensation demands. It is therefore essential to collect evidence now.

-- Chamoisee (chamoisee@yahoo.com), April 18, 2001


I've read enough about this that my mind is completely settled as to my reaction to any attempt to slaughter my animals over this ridiculous virus. The words armed resistance are the most apt description of my reply. I will not allow it while I still have breath.

If we slaughter every animal that may have come into breathing contact with this virus we are going to have a lot more health problems that truly will affect humans. This is completely a "problem, reaction, solution" scenario and is motivated by greed for both power and money. It's a ridiculous approach to illness that doesn't seem to be working. Also it does not harm humans so what is the point???

-- Doreen (animalwaitress@yahoo.com), April 18, 2001.

Doreen if the state techs have been to infected farms to destroy livestock then logic dictates that they too have been exposed.If you shoot a cow with FMD then what do you do about techs and inspectors that might be harboring the virus?...................It's for the good of the country. nothing personal.Sorry. BANG!

-- greg (gsmith@tricountyi.net), April 19, 2001.

I posted it on CS... I'll post it here.

The almighty dollar wins out. If we didn't have all these D****D trade agreements, we wouldn't much worry. But, no one will make any money if they can't ship their meat and animals.

Funny thing is, they are still importing cut flowers from several countries that have current FMD problems. If it can be carried on tires and in the human body, it can be carried on flowers.

It is also a fact that there are a couple countries out there that continually have outbreaks of FMD, and they do generally NOTHING about it. India is one.

Yet - we don't stop emmigration, imports, travel, etc etc.

I have a few other points, too.... But I can't prove the theories. As for myself - If I am lucky enough to have stock in place and then get hit - I will be reporting it. Fortunately, up here in the mountains, and not having anyone that really comes to visit, I wouldn't have all that much to worry about... Just one more gate...

-- Sue Diederich (willow666@rocketmail.com), April 19, 2001.

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