Animal rights and environmental activists are increasingly being targeted by governments as terrorists (or “eco-terrorists”) as award-winning independent journalist and author Will Potter repeatedly shows. One of his recent posts on his site Green is the New Red was on animal activists in Finland being prosecuted for undercovering filming of factory farms. The story:
“In December 2009, Finnish media outlets stunned the nation by publishing disturbing video and photographs from inside 30 pig factory farms, the result of a two-month undercover investigation by the leading Finnish animal rights group, Justice for Animals. You can see the images and videos here,” Mikko Alanne writes on of the Huffington Post.
“Sights of injured, dead, and dying pigs outraged a country whose factory farmers had always touted their “humane” practices. Members of Parliament and even agribusiness representatives condemned what they saw. Police investigations were promised. There were even calls for the Minister of Agriculture to resign (she didn’t).”
But, rather than prosecute any of the agribusiness culprits, the authorities have decided to prosecute two of the animal activists! What for? For “aggravated defamation” of pig farmers and “disturbing the peace.”
Nice, way to stomp at the problem at its root, right?
Potter has covered this sort of story in other places and his intro to this latest news is as follows:
As animal rights activists continue to expose the systemic cruelty of factory farming, the industries targeted are doing everything they can to keep the public in the dark. I’ve written previously about attempts to pass new legislation criminalizing undercover investigations, how EUROPOL lists undercover videos as a terrorism threat, and how Spanish activists are being prosecuted as “terrorists” for their work.
Good work by Potter and Justice for Animals. Too bad the authorities are in bed with agribusiness.
Image Credit: screenshot of sikatehtaat.fi video.