PETA recently received information about cruel and deadly so-called "survival sustenance" training exercises at the U.S. Air Force Academy (USAFA) in Colorado, during which Air Force cadets allegedly bludgeon docile, domesticated rabbits to death and kill chickens.
According to public records obtained by PETA, these training drills are apparently beating, killing, skinning, dismembering, and cooking rabbits who are then eaten, and the USAFA apparently spent thousands of taxpayer dollars since 2014 in order to buy live animals from unlicensed dealers whose operations violate the federal Animal Welfare Act. It also appears that the USAFA has failed to submit federally mandated annual reports to the U.S. Department of Agriculture documenting the number of rabbits it uses and kills.
U.S. Department of Defense policy requires the implementation of "methods other than animal use" for training purposes when non-animal methods are available. Some military units have never used animals, and others have ended the practice, so we know that other methods are available. More than two decades ago, the U.S. Army's Dugway Proving Ground canceled a similar survival-skills training that used animals. And in 2011, PETA worked with the Marine Corps' Mountain Warfare Training Center to suspend its use of live animals for survival-skills training.
Please send a polite e-mail to the superintendent of the U.S. Air Force Academy urging the school to replace the use of animals in expeditionary survival and evasion, or "sustenance," training exercises with non-animal training methods—as other military facilities have already done.
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