- Opinions from Africa -

Shooting Pigs

These pictures dates back to November 1991. After 22 years in the archive they created a lot of fuss in UK on Tuesday (18th) and later that day in Denmark. Why is not easy to understand.

Around 50 pigs are killed in this way every year in Denmark. They are used for training surgeons and nurses in saving lives in conflict zones. The pigs are fully sedated then hung up and shot with three different kind of guns. Now a surgical team has to save their lives. If the animal dies it's a huge failure. The reason for this relative dramatic method is that Scandinavian and British doctors don't have enough expertise in gun shots. Our societies are simply too peaceful.

The training has helped to save lives around the world. Afghanistan is one of the places where Danish and British soldiers have been fighting for years and out there in the field this exercise has been extremely helpful for the doctors and nurses. Now an NGO in UK, PETA, want the Danish Government to stop the doctors from learning this important skill.
We at Mayday Press finds it strange. In Denmark 30 million pigs are slaughtered every year. All these millions of animals have some really horrible six months from they are born until the day they are on their way to the slaughter house. And then they have some really bad hours before they are killed, sometimes they have to wait for hours in either freezing conditions or scorching heat. Anyone who has visited one of the huge killing factories will never forget the sights or sounds. But consumers don't care. They want cheap meat. It's the same consumers who are now up in arms over the shooting of 50 pigs by professional soldiers.

Strange world, isn't it?

Anyway, the doctors in the picture here had a good time that day. They worked hard and learned new stuff. It was interesting to see the teachers take over sometimes, because war surgery is so different from a normal day in the hospital. But the participants were much better prepared for wars after a few hours at the army barracks in Jægerspris. The only odd thing that day was a doctor from Finland who had misunderstood his profession a bit. He asked permission to shoot one of the pigs. The officer in charge of the shooting that day gave him a very funny look and that was that.

Strange world, isn't it?

We sold the pictures to PETA in UK because we knew they would get a huge exposure. The photos had never been released before and of course people has a right to see how things are done so they can make a qualified decision on how to view this life saving exercise. Every year there are discussions about this exercise, but no pictures.

The pictures were distributed together with a press release by PETA, where Associate Director Mimi Bekhechi is quoted: "The UK government's decision to ship out members of the armed forces for deadly and cruel exercises in Denmark – which would be illegal if conducted in the UK – is impossible to justify medically, ethically or educationally."

The words tells it all. Deadly and cruel. Emotional to the core. Not much facts though. Like the pigs are 100% sedated for instance.

We did not have imagination to foresee the many sick comments on the newspapers websites, though. We still think that animal rights groups and animal NGO's should concentrate on the mass murder and bad conditions for farm animals instead of going for the easy targets and the lowest common demominator. We have always quoted Hitler's propaganda Tzar, Joseph Goebbels, for saying ”you cannot aim too low” as a joke (he probably never said it...) but sadly that's what an organization like PETA does. Aim low. It's much more difficult and takes much more energy to deal with real issues, so they always opt for the mainstream and emotional way to raise funds and get actors and other famous people to join their ranks. One week a giraffe in a ZOO, next week a few pigs helping doctors to save lives.

They just don't dare to take on our daily bacon and how it's produced.

If you want to see real horror watch this documentary we made back in 1998 - ”Tyg på den” - (Chew on that). It's in Danish but the footage speaks volumes.

Another thing the animal rights people love to hate is the traditional way of slaughtering. Like the jews, muslims and as in these pictures, some of us do in Africa.
We in this small company have the opinion that if you can eat it - you have to be able to kill it. We have learned our trade down here. We are sure that PETA and other organizations would love to have this way of getting your meat to the table stopped - and they will probably succeed long time before the carnage in the pork, chicken and egg factories are banned. Bon appetit…

A very young photographer cutting the throat of his first goat in Kenya © Mayday Press

The blood is then drunk warm from the artery © Mayday Press