REMEMBERING ANIMALS’ SACRIFICE IN WARFARE

by johnpeter

Everyone in the UK is familiar with the red poppy and what wearing it symbolises – it is worn to remember all of the brave people that have fought and died in the armed services of the commonwealth countries during and since the First World War. On the 11th of November there will be two minute’s silence at 11 o’clock to mark the end of the Great War which officially ended on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month in 1918. However, not many people are familiar with the purple poppy and what it is worn for. Quite simply, the purple poppy is worn to Spenden remember all of the animals that have lost their life or been injured as a result of human conflicts.

‘Animal Aid’

The purple poppy was the idea of the UK animal welfare group ‘Animal Aid’ and it came to life back in 2007. The poppy costs one English pound and is worn around the same time as red poppies, promoting the memory of thousands of animals that have lost their life as a result of being forced into a human war that was nothing to do with them.

Warfare animals have been used to aid humans

Throughout the history of modern warfare animals have been used to aid humans with a many number of dangerous tasks. During the First World War pigeons and dogs were used to carry messages back and forth between the trenches whilst in more modern-day conflicts animals have been used to detect bombs, scout out the enemy and have even been used as decoys. Warfare has meant that animals such as elephants, horses and donkeys have all become beasts of burden; a huge variety of different animals have become pets or slaves to humans as a result of conflict, often living in terrible conditions and suffering. All of these roles are extremely dangerous and many animal lovers believe that it is not fair to use animals for our own war-torn needs.

The use of animals to better humans

The use of animals to better humans’ lives is nothing new and it is still continuing today. One of the main concerns at the forefront of animal lover’s minds in this modern age is the use of animals in testing biological chemicals and poisons. Military testing facilities use cats, dogs, monkeys, sheep, goats, mice and rats to measure the effects of dangerous chemicals and hundreds of animals die annually for this purpose alone; they are also used for testing antidotes but many animals have to die to find a successful antidote.

For years people of the commonwealth countries have remembered all that the brave men and women have sacrificed in the name of their nation. The purple poppy is aimed at highlighting all of the animals that have lost their lives for a war that isn’t even theirs; in the past animals have not featured prominently amongst the remembrance services; animal aid and animal lovers the world over are trying to gradually change this.

Whilst lots of people will remember to wear a red poppy during the second week of November, not many will wear a purple poppy. This is not a reflection of how many humans do not care about animals but more a case of not knowing what the purple poppy stands for; anyone who has read this article will now at least be able to spread the message and demonstrate their support for the animals.

 

 

 

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