Only yesterday, the US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton made it public news that the country was to take a firm stand against poaching.
This is because the illegal trade of various animal parts does more than negatively impact on biodiversity: it constitutes a threat to national security, to economic security and to public health.
Apparently, the US is presently the world's second largest market for the illegal selling of wildlife products.
More often than not, the animal body parts smuggled into this country are rhino horns and elephant tusks, but bear organs, big cat skins and rare birds also make their way into the US, Zoobiquity
As far as Hillary Clinton is concerned, poaching and trafficking animal parts basically means “stealing from the next generation,” which is why, “we need governments, civil society, businesses, scientists, and activists to come together to educate people about the harms of wildlife trafficking.”
Furthermore, “We need trade experts to track the movement of goods and help enforce existing trade laws. We need finance experts to study and help undermine the black markets that deal in wildlife. And most importantly, perhaps, we need to reach individuals, to convince them to make the right choices about the goods they purchase.”
Apparently, the US Intelligence Community was also asked to lend a helping hand with this anti-poaching campaign.
Their help is needed because poachers are now both heavily armed and highly organized, and do not shy away from attacking security officers and police officials.
Rumor has it that the US Intelligence Community will enter a partnership with the Interpol and several custom agencies, so as to make sure that poaching is dealt with on a global scale and not just at a national level.
According to the Wildlife Conservation Society
, the global illegal trade is presently worth about $10-15 billion (€7.84 – €11.76 billion) yearly, which makes it slightly less profitable than human and drugs trafficking.