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Beyond the Propaganda, Animal Testing Helps Save Lives

The author responds to the Mainichi Shimbun's February 2023 article on live animal testing in Japan, pointing out what the article "forgot" to say.



animal testing
A researcher works in a lab run by Moderna Inc, who said November 16, 2020 that its experimental vaccine was 94.5% effective in preventing COVID-19 based on interim data from a late-stage clinical trial, in an undated still image from video. (Moderna Inc/Handout via REUTERS.)

Leave it to the Mainichi Shimbun English Edition to present a steaming plate of propaganda as news. This time it's on animal testing. But first a look back two years ago, on February 6, 2021.

On that date the Mainichi posted an Associated Press article in which Peter Daszak, a member of a World Health Organization (WHO) team "investigating the origins of the coronavirus" at the Wuhan Institute of Virology, chirped that the "Chinese side granted full access to all sites and personnel they requested," "a level of openness that even he hadn't expected." However, a week later, we hear from another WHO team member, Dominic Dwyer, that they received a summary rather than specifically requested "raw patient data." 

Yet another WHO team member viewed the investigation as "highly geopolitical," implying that the Chinese were not at all interested in casting light on a potential accident at the Wuhan Institute as a possible source of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Five months later, the Director-General of the WHO chided China for not being transparent. He stated that "it was premature to rule out a potential link between the COVID-19 pandemic and a laboratory leak." 

Indeed, the very real possibility that the novel coronavirus was manufactured and then leaked out of the Wuhan Institute became one of the biggest pandemic-related stories of 2021. We also later learned of Peter Daszak's intimate and lengthy working relationship with the Wuhan Institute, financially supporting its gain-of-function coronavirus research to the tune of several hundred thousand US taxpayer dollars.

Following these and other revelations, from the Mainichi, not even a muted cough. 

animal testing
A lab mouse. (Rama via Wikimedia commons)

Mainichi and 'Animal Liberation' Terrorism

Now, the Mainichi would like to convince readers that the use of animals in research, or for anything else for that matter, is an atrocity. And furthermore, Japan is at the Neanderthal level compared to Western countries in this regard. 

One doubts as to whether the Mainichi was at all interested in presenting a balanced view of the state of animal welfare in Japan because most of the "screen time" in their article was allotted to a spokesperson for People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA). PETA is a group that claims to speak for defenseless animals. A picture, supplied by PETA no less, is included in the article, of a "caged monkey at an animal testing facility." The veracity of this caption is taken for granted. 


For its part, the Mainichi studiously turned away from immense contributions of laboratory animals in the development of clinical treatments and understanding disease processes. The Mainichi ignored even the importance of animals, including monkeys, in the development of novel coronavirus vaccines. At the same time the Mainichi pushed the vaccines as an essential cornerstone of Japan's response to COVID-19. 

The Mainichi instead served as a mouthpiece of a group that condones, in the parlance of that milieu, "animal liberation" terrorism.

PETA's History Ignored

The Mainichi article fails to even note PETA's long history of openly supporting criminal activities defined as terrorism the United States.Those include trespassing, destruction of private and government property, arson, harassment, and intimidation of scientists and their families. 

Readers do not have to rely on my word. Read the words of PETA leadership:

"Arson, property destruction, burglary, and theft are 'acceptable crimes' when used for the animal cause," said Alex Pacheco, PETA co-founder. 

(Pacheco also co-founded the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society.)

The Animal Liberation Front, ALF, has engaged in criminal activities, including "the use of improvised explosive devices" and "potential assassinations of researchers, corporate officers and employees." The ALF has been identified as a United States domestic terrorist threat. Nonetheless, PETA's co-founder and president Ingrid Newkirk said, "I will be the last person to condemn ALF."

PETA's webpage echoes the sentiment of their leader:


"We will not condemn it [ALF] for carrying out illegal actions in which no sentient being is harmed." 

True to Newkirk's word, she gave ALF terrorist Rodney Coronado over $40,000, as a "donation to support committee work" as he was about to serve prison time for arson. PETA also gave his father a $25,000 "loan". 

Following Coronado's arrest and conviction, in addition to prison time, he was ordered to pay $2.5 million in restitution. So far, Coronado has paid just over $2,000

As a youth, Coronado joined a number of terrorist groups, say reports, including Sea Shepherd. 

They Don't Stop at Japan's Border 

A British activist, Dawn Hurst, of the organization, Stop Huntingdon Animal Cruelty (SHAC), was convicted in 2003 of stealing a dog that belonged to Juntendo University, and between 2001 and 2002, theft of "research materials relating to animal experiments" from "several Japanese laboratories." 

SHAC has targeted Huntingdon Life Sciences (HLS) and its employees with threatening letters, assault and property destruction. HLS was a UK-based contract research organization that used animals for scientific purposes. SHAC has even targeted people vaguely associated with HLS, including overseas Japanese. Daiichi Sankyo, a pharmaceutical company, and other Japanese companies with branches in Europe and the United Kingdom, according to reports, have been blackmailed and harassed by SHAC terrorists.  

By the way, does PETA approve of SHAC? 

PETA president Newkirk is quoted in an August 25, 2002 Boston Herald article  as saying: "More power to SHAC if they can get someone's attention." 


Animal rights terrorists will go anywhere, do anything to sow fear and impose their will. Perhaps it is only a matter of time before sympathetic Japanese allow these criminals into Japan — again. 

Ultimately, the goal of PETA as well as animal rights eco terrorist groups is "total animal liberation," the end of use of animals for any purpose by humans, including food, as pets (pets are "slaves") and in biomedical research.  

Really, PETA is not interested in having "a constructive debate," as the PETA spokesperson claims in the Mainichi article. Rather it is interested in shutting down debate and forcing people to live according to their world view. 

Next in part two: The Nuts, Bolts and Ethics of Animal Research in the Global Search for Cures


Author: Aldric Hama, PhD
Find other discoveries, reports and analysis by Dr Hama here, on JAPAN Forward.

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