Anti-Poaching – noblest 21st Century army career

The Ivory Wars: Heavily armed platoons of rangers at Garamba National Park in the Democratic Republic of Congo wage war against elephant poachers.
[Source: ‘Africas elephants are being slaughtered in poaching frenzy’, Documentary by By Ben Solomon, The New York Times,
Watch Video: ^http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/04/world/africa/africas-elephants-are-being-slaughtered-in-poaching-frenzy.html]

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Following years in Iraq and Afghanistan, two Australian ex-Special Forces operators set up the IAPF in Zimbabwe.  Their frontline now is global conservation.

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IAPF ?

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International Anti Poaching Foundation   (IAPF)

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<<Damien Mander had a military career of nine years, three years of which were spent in Iraq.  He has invested his life savings including the sale all investment properties to fund the start up and running costs of the IAPF for the first few years.

In 2010 Damien’s long time best mate, Steven Dean, sold up everything and put the funds into the IAPF – moving to Africa to help with the struggle.  Collectively, they have invested the savings of seven years of working in war zones towards conservation.  Africa is now their frontline.  The IAPF is now funded through public donations, grants and fundraising activities.

They are totally commited using drones, night vision and thermal imaging to get the poachers.>>

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<<The IAPF’s academy in Zimbabwe can only train Zimbabwean or regional nationals for work in IPZs (Intensive Protective Zones) within the country.

However, the IAPF accredited academy in South Africa (across the southern border) run by Eco Ranger, does give participants the opportunity to be trained from the grassroots level. No previous experience is necessary. (Then ambition and service rests with you).  Contact JC Strauss at Eco Ranger ^www.ecoranger.co.za for more information on upcoming courses.>>

JC

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In 2005 – 2007, JC trained and developed 350 Wildlife Rangers for Limpopo Parks Board in South Africa and headed the Anti-Poaching teams covering 53 Protected Areas that brought down rhino and elephant poaching to 0% for 3 consecutive years.

Enough said.  Find Out More:

^http://www.iapf.org/en/

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>EcoRanger Info Pack.pdf    (1.5MB)

Rhino face chainsawed off for its horn while still alive to sell for Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM)
[Source:  ^http://soiledearth.com/images/south-african-rhino-poaching-rhino-wars]

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TCM Poachers murder baby Rhino
[Source:  ^http://soiledearth.com/images/south-african-rhino-poaching-rhino-wars]

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Concern Grows Around South Africa’s Legal Trade in Live Rhinos

Is there something sinister lurking behind South Africa’s legal rhino trade?


<<As the Rhino death toll continues to rise in South Africa, disconcerting information regarding the country’s legal rhino trade continues to emerge.

One of the most well-known (“alleged”) exploiters of legal trade loopholes is Dawie Groenewald of the notorious “Groenewald gang“, who legally purchased a significant number of Rhinos prior to his arrest in September 2010.

Investigators later found a mass grave of 20 de-horned Rhinos on Groenewald’s property.

Groenewald’s heinous activities are part of a deadly scourge – using Rhino trade loopholes to launder rhino horn – and there is no shortage of others like him, who are more than willing to cash in on backward medicinal myths about ‘Rhino horn‘.

Let’s take a look at the scams and schemes.


Public documents obtained from South Africa’s Parliamentary Monitoring Group website indicate that in 2008, a “Mr. J.F Hurne” purchased at least six Rhinos at auction and subsequently delivered them to a “Mr. D. Groenewald”.

(Note:   Currency values are hown in South African Rand – currently comparable with the US Dollar)

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More recently, there is unconfirmed information circulating via mass email and social media networks of a 2011 transaction between Dawie Groenewald and a “Mr. John Hume” (a prolific game rancher mentioned in Bloomberg) involving the sale of nine rhinos. Update 07/14: It is now confirmed by IOL that Groenewald “has a contract” to buy nine rhinos. If the deal goes through, three male rhinos will be sent to Groenewald’s Prachtig property and the six female rhinos will be sent to Hume’s ranch.

Hume is (by his own admittance to Bloomberg) an advocate of legalized trade in rhino horn, and connected to professional hunter Peter Thormahlen, who was twice arrested for suspected involvement with Vietnamese “pseudo-hunts.”

Even Peter Thormahlen has been prosecuted for leading hunts feeding the horn trade. In 2006 at the Loskop Dam Nature Game Reserve, he paid a token fine after his Vietnamese hunter casually told an official that he did not know how to shoot.

The second time, in Limpopo province in 2008, Thormahlen was indignant and fought the citation in court with the help of lawyer Tom Dreyer.

(Thormahlen’s second case was dismissed.)

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‘A significant number of Rhinos’

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According to the publicly available document referenced above, which shows a series of rhino transactions from 2007 to 2010, Dawie Groenewald and/or a “Mr. D. Groenewald” seems to have acquired a significant number of rhinos between 2008 and 2010.

Take a look:

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2008

Six rhinos previously referenced:

2009:

Here’s a rather large acquisition worth noting (2009):

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2010:

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Meanwhile, copies of permits granting Dawie Groenewald permission to “hunt or convey” White Rhinos – issued despite his arrest in 2010 – are circulating via email and have now surfaced on various social media networks, such as Facebook ®.

Take a look at the permit copies here.   (If you are using Facebook ®, you can easily locate these images.)

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Laundering Rhino Horn with Hunting ‘sick safaris’

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Just days ago, a Thai national named Chumlong Lemtongthai was arrested – along with five Thai “hunters” – in South Africa.

Lemongthai had allegedly arranged rhino hunting expeditions for the purpose of buying the horns from the hunters. He would then ship the horns abroad to be used illegally in traditional Chinese medicine.

However, the identity of the South African trophy hunt operators who aided Lemongthai remains unclear.

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With the right kick-arse arsenal..
..like this Finnish-engineered Sako TRG42, with an effective range of  over 800 metres against poachers.. ‘ our troubles here would be over very quickly’.
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Politics is always a case of deals and priorities and enough money is always available.

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WARNING: THIS VIDEO CONTAINS IMAGES OF HUNTING

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Click Image to play video of Vietnamese TCM Poachers
[Source: ^http://www.rhinoconservation.org/2011/07/13/concern-grows-around-south-africas-legal-trade-in-live-rhinos/]

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To learn more about how South African hunting ‘sick safaris’ are used as a front for trafficking illegal rhino horn, check out Mules Hunting Rhinos? Sinister Scam Unfolds in South Africa.

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Vietnam and China’s TCM Rhino Horn Poaching Scheme

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It is highly unlikely that China’s multi-million dollar rhino farming scheme could have developed without South Africa’s willingness to legally export over 100 live Rhinos to China between 2007 and the present.

Despite the fact that China and Vietnam had already been implicated as a destination for illegal rhino horn sourced from Southern Africa , at least 18 Rhinos were exported to China from South Africa during a six-month period in 2010.

 

TCM Rhino Deals

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What is particularly disturbing about these multiple Rhino deals between South Africa and China is that in addition to the escalation in Rhino killings between 2008 and the present, there was no shortage of indicators that should have been noted by the country of export, South Africa.

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The first was in 2007, when the Chinese Government infused Traditional Chinese Medicine quack research with USD $130 million – five times more than the previous year’s budget – to “standardize and modernize” traditional Chinese medicine.  How did this not pique the interest of authorities?

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Ed:  Chinese Quack ‘Medicine’ competes for immorality with Japanese ‘Scientific Whaling Bullshit’ – how backward and depraved can primitive human superstitions lower themselves to?

Africans should be a wake up to East Asian barbaric persecution of precious African wildlife’

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Then in 2008, a Chinese research proposal revealed the location of China’s “rhino farm” and “horn harvesting experiments”, along with intentions to circumvent CITES. For additional information, see:

Another Chinese research proposal recommends the acquisition and stockpiling of rhino horn. Check out the following to learn more:

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Why does this matter?

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This matters because there is growing evidence which strongly suggests that widespread abuse of South Africa’s existing legal trade loopholes is fueling and feeding the demand for rhino horn, and camouflaging the illegal rhino horn trade.

The extent to which the illegal rhino horn trade is being aided and augmented by legal trade in South Africa – both in live rhinos and trophy exports – is indeed unsettling, and is certainly deserving of deeper scrutiny.>>

[Source: ^http://www.rhinoconservation.org (http://s.tt/1aQ3A) ]

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Further Reading:

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[1]    Anti-Poaching Intelligence Group Southern Africa, ^http://www.antipoachintelligence.co.za/home

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[2]    Warriors For African Rhino, ^http://www.warriorsforafricanrhino.org/

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[3]    Outraged South African Citizens Against Poaching (OSCAP), ^http://www.oscap.co.za/

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[4]    Bush Warriors, ^http://bushwarriors.org/

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[5]   ‘Ivory Wars‘, National Geographic, March 2007, ^http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/2007/03/ivory-wars/fay-text

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<<The dead elephant, a huge bull, lay on his side, right leg curled as if in wrenching pain. Dirt covered the exposed eye—magic done by poachers to hide the carcass from vultures. The smell of musth and urine, of fresh death, hung over the mound of the corpse. It was a sight I had seen hundreds of times in central Africa. As I passed my hand over his body from trunk to tail, tears poured down my cheeks. I lifted the bull’s ear. Lines of bright red blood bubbled and streamed from his lips, pooling in the dust. His skin was checkered with wrinkles. The base of his trunk was as thick as a man’s torso. Deep fissures ran like rivers through the soles of his feet; in those lines, I could trace every step he had taken during his 30 years of life.

This elephant’s ancestors had survived centuries of raiding by the armies of Arab and African sultans from the north in search of slaves and ivory. He had lived through civil wars and droughts, only to be killed today for a few pounds of ivory to satisfy human vanity in some distant land. There were tender blades of grass in his mouth. He and his friends had been peacefully roaming in the shaded forest, snapping branches filled with sweet gum. Then, the first gunshot exploded. He bolted, too late. Horses overtook him. Again and again, bullets pummeled his body. We counted eight small holes in his head. Bullets had penetrated the thick skin and lodged in muscle, bone, and brain before he fell. We heard 48 shots before we found him.

Souleyman Mando, the commander of our detachment of mounted park rangers, was silent. I sensed a dark need for revenge. The feeling was mutual.

“Next time, you will get them,” I offered.

He feigned a smile. “Inshallah,” he said.>>

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TCM Poacher – Open Season!
Inshallah !

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