Jewish World Review March 31, 2003 / 27 Adar II, 5763
Dolphins, PETA and the USAhttp://www.NewsAndOpinion.com | The Navy has unleashed its secret weapon in the war in Iraq - the Atlantic bottle-nosed dolphin. And the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals sure aren't happy about it.
You see, dolphins are clever animals. And because they have sonar, they're very effective at detecting the land mines the Iraqi's are slipping into the Persian Gulf shipping lanes.
Well, no sooner did this story break than the PETA folks had their flippers in a twist. "Our troops deserve the best defense possible, but PETA opposes the use of dolphins, sea lions, or any other marine mammals," it was quoted on one Web site.
Well, no shock there. A few years ago when beavers had dammed up the Tidal Basin in Washington -turning the place into more of a tidal wave -PETA argued that the beavers be left alone.
"The (dolphin) project is cruel and cannot provide a reliable defense or surveillance for our troops," PETA said
Well, that's jumping to conclusions. Dolphins can swim fast, dive deep and don't have to worry about depth, temperature or the other things less reliable human divers are faced with.
"The Navy claims they are not putting these animals in harm's way, but they've removed these animals from their homes (and) relocated them to foreign waters in the Persian Gulf … "
War certainly is hell. I only hope and pray the dolphins are allowed to use some kind of communication vehicles to swap sonar with their families back home.
" … and (the Navy is) forcing them to not only inspect the waters, but to actually swim up to potential terrorists under the water, clamp a cuff on their leg, and deploy a floating marker. How can anyone say these animals are not being put in harm's way?"
It's true. There are no guarantees in war. It is likely that Hussein has trained his own dolphin loyalists (the fedadolphines?) who are at this moment terrorizing the other fish by threatening to break their fins.
"These are living beings with minds of their own, and though they are incredibly intelligent, they have no idea that lives will be lost if they fail to perform tasks properly," said PETA.
God forbid that our highly trained dolphins would have the same burden that our 300,000 other fighting men and women are faced with.
I know most agree that our PETA folks are awfully silly to be so worried about dolphins when the lives of so many people are at stake. Their silliness is telling about who we are and what this war is partly about.
But it's also terrific because it reflects the health of our country. And it is terrific that so many anti-war protesters are decrying the pain and suffering of war. It is true that logical arguments can be made both for and against this war, but most protesters aren't making them. They're simply against pain and suffering, forgetting that both are usually the price that is paid to acquire freedom and long-term peace in the first place.
And so much do we enjoy freedom and peace within America - so free are we to value life - that we're even worried about a couple of dolphins.
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