Outraged Birders Warn Oregon Militia: 'We Are Watching Your Every Move'
Nature photographers are outraged. Just ask birder and blogger Kevin of Bird Explorers, who uses the pen name Norwegian Chef. He condemned the Oregon militia currently occupying Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in an open letter on Tuesday.
Kevin, a Bangkok-based wildlife photographer and nature tracker, claims to have the support of some 40 million nature-loving Americans, who, he said, "will not stand" for this kind of "sedition."
40 Million Bad*ss Birders Just Declared War On Oregon Terrorists https://t.co/P0xCZehhWj https://t.co/UQOM1t3hT8— Zaibatsu News Ⓜ️ (@Zaibatsu News Ⓜ️)1452129124.0
He warned the militants that “no small group of armed thugs is going to destroy the great wildlife and national park system that our great Republican President Teddy Roosevelt and John Muir put in place over a century ago.”
The birder said the entire community of wildlife conservationists will be watching them:
"We are watching your every move, and we have been watching you for a long time. And yes absolutely you are domestic terrorists of the worst kind, and the truth about your decades of constant poaching of protected wildlife around Malheur and other wildlife refuges, national parks, national forests and BLM [U.S. Bureau of Land Management] lands has been well-documented."
He assured that the militia will be brought to justice:
"For years those of us who are wildlife photographers, birdwatchers and carers of wildlife, have been documenting the activities of you poachers and criminals around many of our nation’s wildlife refuges. With our powerful cameras and ability to move unseen in the wilderness, we have found and documented your illegal hunts, your illegal traps and all sorts of illicit activities, and are constantly feeding that information to law enforcement, and we have finally got many of you poachers on the run and into jails."
Calling the militants "welfare queens" and "cheats" living off of the Bureau of Land Management, Kevin said national treasures such as Malheur, Yellowstone and Yosemite belong to all Americans and not a "small group of armed thugs."
Happy National Bird Day!! Hey our Oregon Anti-Terrorist Bird Post went viral with already 11,458 shares on... https://t.co/L3tP9VnbPt— Bird Explorers (@Bird Explorers)1452069095.0
As for whether or not the militants should be labeled as terrorists, Kevin had a simple response:
"As Oregon's Congressman Earl Blumenauer just stated, 'Armed insurrection is terrorism. The situation at the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge shouldn't be allowed to fester but should be dealt with firmly, swiftly and fairly. The continued disruption to the community of Burns and occupation of a federal facility is unacceptable. Those involved should be arrested and prosecuted.'"
The birding community is "ablaze" right now, Kevin wrote. "We will #takebackmalheur from you terrorists, and will not rest until every one of you thugs and poachers is behind bars where they belong."
He vowed to "put every civil suit" against them and warned that they'd never be able to outrun or hide from the "natural law of karma."
Kevin isn't the only one to speak out against this group on behalf of wildlife and the environment. Kierán Suckling, executive director of the Center for Biological Diversity, said: “This is the latest in a long string of armed, right-wing thugs attempting to seize America’s public lands and enact their paranoid, anti-government dream bought by guns and intimidation.
“We’ve seen it with pipe bombs planted on wilderness trails and sent to the U.S. Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management. We saw [it] in 2014 with Cliven Bundy and his racist and violent rhetoric in Nevada and now we’re seeing it with his sons in Oregon.”
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Our Lives Depend On It<p>The multiple ecosystem collapses we have documented in Australia are a harbinger for <a href="https://www.iucn.org/news/protected-areas/202102/natures-future-our-future-world-speaks" target="_blank">environments globally</a>.</p><p>The simplicity of the 3As is to show people <em>can</em> do something positive, either at the local level of a landcare group, or at the level of government departments and conservation agencies.</p><p>Our lives and those of our <a href="https://theconversation.com/children-are-our-future-and-the-planets-heres-how-you-can-teach-them-to-take-care-of-it-113759" target="_blank">children</a>, as well as our <a href="https://theconversation.com/taking-care-of-business-the-private-sector-is-waking-up-to-natures-value-153786" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">economies</a>, societies and <a href="https://theconversation.com/to-address-the-ecological-crisis-aboriginal-peoples-must-be-restored-as-custodians-of-country-108594" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">cultures</a>, depend on it.</p><p>We simply cannot afford any further delay.</p><p><em><a rel="noopener noreferrer" href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/dana-m-bergstrom-1008495" target="_blank" style="">Dana M Bergstrom</a> is a principal research scientist at the University of Wollongong. <a rel="noopener noreferrer" href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/euan-ritchie-735" target="_blank" style="">Euan Ritchie</a> is a professor in Wildlife Ecology and Conservation, Centre for Integrative Ecology, School of Life & Environmental Sciences at Deakin University. <a rel="noopener noreferrer" href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/lesley-hughes-5823" target="_blank">Lesley Hughes</a> is a professor at the Department of Biological Sciences at Macquarie University. <a rel="noopener noreferrer" href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/michael-depledge-114659" target="_blank">Michael Depledge</a> is a professor and chair, Environment and Human Health, at the University of Exeter. </em></p><p><em>Disclosure statements: Dana Bergstrom works for the Australian Antarctic Division and is a Visiting Fellow at the University of Wollongong. Her research including fieldwork on Macquarie Island and in Antarctica was supported by the Australian Antarctic Division.</em></p><p><em>Euan Ritchie receives funding from the Australian Research Council, The Australia and Pacific Science Foundation, Australian Geographic, Parks Victoria, Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning, and the Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC. Euan Ritchie is a Director (Media Working Group) of the Ecological Society of Australia, and a member of the Australian Mammal Society.</em></p><p><em>Lesley Hughes receives funding from the Australian Research Council. She is a Councillor with the Climate Council of Australia, a member of the Wentworth Group of Concerned Scientists and a Director of WWF-Australia.</em></p><p><em>Michael Depledge does not work for, consult, own shares in or receive funding from any company or organization that would benefit from this article, and has disclosed no relevant affiliations beyond their academic appointment.</em></p><p><em>Reposted with permission from <a href="https://theconversation.com/existential-threat-to-our-survival-see-the-19-australian-ecosystems-already-collapsing-154077" target="_blank" style="">The Conversation</a>. </em></p>
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