US-Funded Armies Slaughtering Record Number of Elephants
Common Dreams — The illegal elephant ivory trade is reaching record levels and “Africa is in the midst of an epic elephant slaughter,” reports the New York Times. As demand for elephant ivory grows in China, more and more poachers, including some of Africa’s most infamous armed groups, are killing elephants to cash in. Tens of thousands of elephants are being killed every year in Africa, conservationists say, as poachers kill them for nothing other than their tusks.
Armies including the Ugandan military, the Congolese Army, and South Sudan’s military are also poaching using military helicopters to slaughter from above.
The U.S. and its taxpayer money is doing its part in making the helicopter slaughters possible:
The American government has provided $250 million in nonlethal military assistance to South Sudan during the past several years. In May, the Garamba rangers said they had opened fire on four South Sudanese soldiers who had poached six elephant tusks. The rangers said they killed one soldier, though they did not seem to think too much about it. “I’ve killed too many people to count,” said Alexi Tamoasi, a veteran ranger.