Stopping the Blitzkrieg

Juvenile gorillas dismantle snares set by bushmeat poachers in Rwanda’s Volcanoes National Park; a wolverine destroys a trapline somewhere in the Arctic; a cow breaks free and temporarily escapes a terrible death at a slaughterhouse; Gustave, a giant crocodile, has been killing people and eluding his would-be captors since 1998.

It’s tempting to imagine these cases as precursors to a long-overdue animal uprising; there’s a war going on and the animals are beginning to fight back. Could this be the start of a new resistance movement, the likes of which the world has not seen since the Nazis occupied much of Europe?

Make no mistake, there is a war going on—humans are in the role of the Nazis, while animals are the unarmed freedom fighters. To quote a character in a novel by Isaac Bashevis Singer, “Human beings see oppression vividly when they’re the victims. Otherwise they victimize blindly and without a thought.” Despite their remarkable resourcefulness, non-human animals are still centuries behind the rampant human aggressors, whose power seems to grow as fast as their population.

Homo sapiens have had the upper hand ever since they were recognizable as a species. But it took hundreds of thousands of years of chewing the fat (literally and figuratively) around the bonfire, watching each other pound rocks into sharper and sharper weapons, before their technological advances and self-aggrandizing religions set them apart from our fellow earthlings (at least in their own minds).

Non-human animals reside in the here and now, blessed with just enough intelligence to live in relative harmony with nature. They aren’t cursed with the oversized brain and overwhelming ego that has led Homo sapiens to the notion that they’re entitled to exploit or exterminate all other species as they see fit.

The story of the proactive juvenile gorillas is heartening, but sadly their accomplishment came two days after a member of their clan died in one of the hundreds of snares set for antelope. Whether humans act out of greed or desperation, the end result is always the same for the animals killed, and Mother Nature herself suffers a blow every time another strand of biodiversity is severed.

Fortunately, more and more selfless people worldwide are siding with the animals and joining the resistance: a pioneering family of conservationists breaks ties with a powerful trophy elk-hunting group in response to its anti-wolf rhetoric; Sea Shepherd supporters fight to save sharks, whales and seals the world over; trackers and primatologists make daily rounds to dismantle poachers’ snares, in alliance with our peaceful primate cousins.

History has shown that if good people work together, even a blitzkrieg can be stopped in its tracks.

Text and Wildlife Photography Copyright Jim Robertson

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9 thoughts on “Stopping the Blitzkrieg

  1. The animals are starting to fight back just as Mother Earth is. Both are telling us that we can’t continue raping and pillaging the planet with total disregard for the consequences in order to further our own selfish ends. This is happening because of the planetary ascension process. Mother Earth is moving to a higher energy level, and since the animals are one with Her they’re moving right along with Her. The animals are able to keep up with Her because they are egoless, whereas we are not. As a race we are by and large still enmeshed in ego and self-interest, and as such are falling far behind in the ascension process.

    If we don’t get with the program the joke will be on us, because Mother Earth and the animals are going ahead, even if we’re not. They don’t need us, even though we in our arrogance believe we are the ultimate creation.

  2. Yay, Jim! (claps, whistles, jumps up and down). We need to show our solidarity with the animals and help them in their fight to survive. A culture of resistance is being born. Let us nourish it and speed it along to its full potential.

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