I'm surprised PETA hasn't latched on to this. I'm sure they've probably got something of their own in the works.
http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmp...aq_britain_zooAn MP has asked military leaders in Iraq (news - web sites) to think about some of the forgotten casualties of war -- animals.
Tony Banks, a former minister in Prime Minister Tony Blair's Labour government, welcomed promises from London and Washington that troops would do their best to avoid hitting ordinary Iraqis in bombing raids, but said they also needed to think about the creatures in Baghdad's El-Zawra Zoo.
"In war, countless numbers of animals are killed and injured," the former sports minister, who voted against war on Iraq, said in an statement put before parliament on Friday.
He appealed to military leaders "to ensure that Baghdad's El-Zawra zoo is safeguarded and that when hostilities are over military vets will provide urgent assistance to the zoo and other organisations involved with animal welfare in Iraq."
The zoo, which is reported to be shut and under renovation, escaped bomb damage during the 1991 allied blitz on Baghdad but keepers said the animals had been disturbed by the noise of bombs hitting nearby targets.
The cause of suffering creatures always gains huge publicity in Britain, whose animal-loving citizens have a reputation for caring more about their pets than fellow humans.
"I know that some might say 'why are you concerned about the animals', but someone has to be," he told Reuters. "We know what our own dogs and pets are like on fireworks night."
It is not the first time Banks has gone into battle to protect animals in a war zone. In 2001, he championed the cause of Marjan, a lame one-eyed lion in Kabul Zoo when the U.S. carried out bombing raids in Afghanistan to oust the Taliban regime.
Marjan, who had survived numerous battles, communism, the Taliban and the U.S. bombing campaign, died of old age in a blaze of international publicity shortly afterwards.