Ingrid Newkirk, of all people, gave a speech at a conference addressing violent conflict in the Middle East at which she said,
. . . we call all attacks on civilians, whether against Palestinians in Jenin or Israelis in Tel Aviv, what they are: War crimes.
If we want an end to violence, it means that we must first reject the slaughterhouse, the animal circus, and animal skins and remember that kindness to animals has been a cornerstone of every great religion in the history of the world.
Mohandas Gandhi, one of the icons of the nonviolence movement, taught that how we treat animals shows our ability to empathize with those who are ‘different’ from us, which is the first step toward living in peace with our human neighbors.
Leaving aside the accuracy of her claim about religion and animals, it is interesting that Newkirk declares violence against civilians “war crimes”, but as far as I know neither Newkirk or People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals has ever apologized for Dan Mathews remarks in admiration of serial killer Andrew Cunanan. Cunanan murdered fashion designer Gianni Versace, and in 1999 PETA’s Mathews, asked to name a 20th century man he loves, replied,
Andrew Cunanan, because he got Versace to stop doing fur.
Animal rights group addresses Mideast conflict. Ynetnews.Com, January 4, 2005.