The Knappster: A Victory for the Horse Killers

by George Knapp from Las Vegas CITYLIFE

Decency, Compassion and Honesty Took a Hit from the Darkside

“Anyone who feels strongly about cutting up horses (including wild mustangs) for food needs to have their voices heard now. “

Journalist Equine Champion ~ George Knapp AKA The "Knappster"

Been dying for a thick, juicy horse burger but can’t find a meat market that sells the good stuff anymore? Did killjoy animal lovers thwart your plan to send a holiday gift box filled with flash-frozen tenderloins de Flicka to your Uncle Pierre in Bruges? Are herds of dadgum wild mustangs running through your neighborhood again, dropping horse pucky all over your croquet course?

Well, don’t you fret, Tex. Sharpen up the old meat hook and fire up the barbecue because horse slaughter is on its way back.

Like people in most other civilized nations, Americans — as a rule — do not eat horses. We don’t eat dogs or house cats, either, though some folks do in other parts of the world. We generally regard horses, dogs and cats as pets, friends and partners, not as four-legged Sloppy Joes. For the time being, dogs and cats are safe, most likely because there isn’t enough meat on their bones to offer much profit potential.

But horses?

In 2007, horse lovers and animal-welfare groups convinced Congress that the slaughter of horses for human consumption is despicable, barbaric, not something Americans should support. Congress voted to cut off funding for all horse-meat slaughter plants, which effectively closed down those few remaining in the U.S. But ever since, Big Agriculture has been plotting a return to the glory days of sending tens of thousands of horses to be butchered, then shipped to Belgium or Japan for sale in markets or restaurants.

A few rabid ranchers have been out in front on this issue, telling Congress that we are really missing out on some big money by allowing American horses to be shipped to Canada and Mexico to be slaughtered instead of carving them up right here at home. The same folks who have pushed to reopen the slaughterhouses are the loudest voices in support of clearing public lands of wild horses, which, presumably, are nice and lean and would be great in a stroganoff. They put some money together, hired a select group of pro-meat lobbyists (such as former Texas Congressman Charlie Stenholm), then let nature take its course. We all know how things work in Washington.

The Government Accounting Office conducted a supposedly impartial study, one that appears to mirror the propaganda written by slaughter proponents, and that’s all the cover Congress needed. As of this week, a conference committee focusing on a massive appropriations bill containing budgets for Agriculture, Justice, Commerce, HUD and other biggies very quietly removed the ban on funding for horse-meat inspectors. One minute it was there. The next it was gone. Poof.

What it means is that unless the full Congress discusses the issue before passing the larger appropriations bill, then horse-meat plants will be back in business very soon. “The roadblock has been removed,” crowed Wyoming representative and rancher Sue Wallis, the most vocal of the pro-slaughter crowd.

Anyone who feels strongly about cutting up horses (including wild mustangs) for food needs to have their voices heard now. It seems doubtful that any of Nevada’s congressional folks are major supporters of horse slaughter, but chances are that what happened in the conference committee is not a high priority. An angry public could help change that.

One issue not given consideration by the pro-slaughter folks is that since the 2007 ban, European countries have raised their standards for horse meat. Most American horses are so riddled with chemicals and contaminants that the meat could only be sold abroad if someone looks the other way. Most of it will likely not pass health inspections. That won’t matter a bit to the bloodthirsty folks with dollar signs in their eyes, but it should matter to the rest of us.

GEORGE KNAPP is a Peabody Award-winning investigative reporter for KLAS channel 8. Reach him at

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Commentary: Wild Horse Lovers are a Bunch of Head Cases?

Video Commentary by Las Vegas Channel 8’s George Knapp

Nevada Elected Official Says Cows are Cool but Horse Advocates are Sick

In a video commentary, George Knapp nails an elected official who says that wild horse advocates suffered abuse from their parents.

Click on Image to View Video Commentary

Interview: Reporter Scoops Story on Wyoming Horse Slaughter Politician

(The News As We See It) by R.T. Fitch ~ Author/Director of HfH Advisory Council

Part One: Simone Netherlands Speaks Out on Wallis Case

Simone Netherlands at recent Wild Horse advocate press conference in Phoenix, AZ

Several months after filing charges against the pro-horse slaughter Wyoming politician Sue Wallis reporter Simone Netherlands sat down with SFTHH founder and Editor R.T. Fitch to make public the course of events that unfolded during the failed pro-horse slaughter fest inappropriately called the “Summit of the Horse” in Las Vegas, last January.

R.T.:  “Simone, we want to thank you for not only standing up for your rights but for taking the time to speak with us, today, and fill us in on what is happening with your legal action against known horse slaughter supporter, Sue Wallis, aka “Slaughterhouse” Sue.”

Simone:  “No worries, R.T., I thought it was time to clear the air and my attorney has given me clearance to do so.  We are totally transparent.”

R.T.:  “Great, can you tell us why you where attending the infamous “Summit of the Horse” in Las Vegas last January?

Simone:  “Certainly, I was attending, along with my producer Lorna Moffat, in the capacity of reporter for the “Meet  America Series” which airs on Thursdays (9:30 pm) and Tuesdays (3:30 pm) on AMP Channel  17 in Santa Barbara.”

R.T.:  “Great plug, Simone.  Did you have appropriate press credential?’

Simone:  “Sure did, Lorna had acquired a press pass for me, only problem was there was a typo on one letter of my name but I didn’t think that to be a big deal.”

R.T.:  “What day did you arrive and who did you interview?”

Simone:  “We attended on the 4th of January, I interviewed Wallis with no problems but there was not much to report on, there.  The real prize was to be able to sit down with the Director of the Bureau of Land Management, Bob Abbey, and interview him face to face.  I asked some very pointed questions about the plight of our national icon, the wild horses and his responses were interesting to say the least.”

R.T.:  “Did his interview make it to the air waves, or should I say cable these days?”

Simone:  “Not in its entirety, I intend to upload it to YouTube, soon.”

R.T.:  “I am sure a lot of folks would like to see it.  Did anything else transpire on the 4th?”

Simone:  “Yes, we had held a press conference earlier in the day.  It is well known that I have been fighting against the deception propagated by the few pro-slaughter advocates, of which Wallis is one, for years so being that this “Summit” was all about killing and eating horses I felt it necessary to voice the other side of the story.”

R.T.  “I have seen several of the clips and you came off very well, your professionalism showed.”

Simone:  “(laughing) No, it’s more like the news room editing that did it, but George Knapp did an excellent job, as usual, of telling it like it is.  But all of the local networks carried segments of my arguments that evening.”

R.T.:  “So what happened the following day?  I know that you were there because I was on the phone with you and won’t even refer to the incident as “alleged” as I heard Wallis in the background.”

Simone:  “That you were.  I had made an appointment to speak with the day’s major speaker, Dr. Temple Grandin, after her speech.  I was looking forward to both here speech and the interview but when I entered into the “Summit” room to take my seat, after going through the security process, Wallis came barreling over to me before I could even get 15 feet into the room.  She began to speak harshly and loudly at me while repeating “I saw you in the news, I saw you in the news.”  She was absolutely fuming and it took me off guard, I was both startled and shocked.  She grabbed me by both my arms and started do shove and jerk me out of the room.  I cried out in pain as only 3 months prior I suffered a severe fracture to my arm and elbow, in a horse related incident, and had a metal plate and 9 screws installed to hold the shattered bone together while it healed.  Although I had stopped wearing a sling my arm was still very tender and healing.  I told her that my arm was broken but she did not stop.”

R.T.:  “And?”

Simone:  “She got me out into the hallway and she hollered at me saying that I was a liar and that I lied about my press credentials and one cannot be the interviewer and the interviewee.”

R.T.:  “Did you respond?”

Simone:  “ I asked her where that rule was written and if she would have adequately checked my press credentials she would have found out that they were totally legitimate, meanwhile my arm was really hurting.”

R.T.:  “How did she process that?”

Simone:  “She said ‘I’m taking your press pass away!’ and she spun on her heel and while fuming returned into the room at which point I sat down on a bench in the hallway and then called you.”

R.T.:  “And I am glad that you did.”

(to be continued)

George Knapp Story on the Wallis Horse Slaughter Fest

Anti-Wild Horse Bill Passes Nevada Senate Committee

I-Team Report by George Knapp of Las Vegas Channel 8 News

Committee Nixes WH Sanctuary without Hearing from Investors

Wild Horse under attack by BLM helicopter near Pickens property during recent Antelope Complex Stampede ~ photo by Terry Fitch

LAS VEGAS — With all the financial trouble Nevada is in, you might think state lawmakers would welcome a project that will bring millions of dollars to the state and attract tourists from around the world.

But a panel in the Nevada State Senate has turned thumbs down to a planned wild horse sanctuary without even hearing from the investors who are backing it.

Senate Joint Resolution 5, which was rubber stamped by the Senate Natural Resources Committee, has no power to do anything about wild horses, as the state has no say over what happens on federal, Bureau of Land Management controlled land.

But the resolution could be a huge problem for a proposed horse sanctuary that is already creating jobs and economic benefits. If the bill moves forward, it would tell the BLM and the world that Nevada likes the wild horse situation just as it is.

In 2008, the I-Team tagged along as philanthropist Madeleine Pickens began her search for ranch property in northern Nevada, the potential site for a sprawling sanctuary for wild mustangs.

The idea would be to take horses that have already been gathered and are warehoused in BLM holding facilities in the Midwest, off limits to the public, and allow them to roam free in their natural environment in a large fenced facility. Pickens planned to create a learning center that would also be a major tourist attraction for Elko County.

Since that first scouting trip, Pickens put her money where her mouth is. She ponied up $6 million to purchase two ranches and is spending plenty to build her dream project, to the benefit of towns like Wells, Nevada, which is still recovering from a terrible earthquake

“She spent $100,000 last month in 30 days alone in labor and materials in Elko County in the City of Wells. So it’s already happening. It’s real. The investment is already there,” said wild horse advocate Jerry Reynoldson.

Reynoldson spent more than two years working to get BLM approval for the Pickens plan. The Bureau admitted from the start that this approach would be far more cost effective than feeding horses in government pens for the rest of their lives and would save taxpayers tens of millions.

In February, BLM Director Bob Abbey admitted that the approach of rounding up then warehousing mustangs simply isn’t working. BLM just announced that it is actively seeking proposals to partner with private entities, just like Pickens’ plan. That’s why the timing of Senate Joint Resolution 5 could not be worse. It expresses opposition to any wild horse preserve on public land in Nevada.

“For the Nevada Legislature to say we’re not going to let you build a sanctuary or go on the record against it is simply saying we want more of the same, we want the status quo, and for ranchers, that’s what they want, just gather them and get them out of here,” said Reynoldson.

The resolution was approved by the Senate Natural Resources Committee, largely because it was backed by the longest serving member, Senator Dean Rhoads of Elko. Rhoads, a lifelong cattle rancher, leases tens of thousands of acres of public land for his cows.The hearing took all of 10 minutes.

Senators disregarded hundreds of emails sent by horse advocates and heard no testimony at all about the Pickens plan or its economic benefits. Rhoads is now trying to get the assembly to follow his lead.

Pickens and her allies hope lawmakers get an earful from the public about economic benefits.

“Nevada needs tourism. You can’t stop tourism from coming to northern Nevada. Get over it guys,” said Pickens.

“This joint resolution is bad because it will stop progress on an issue everyone agrees has gone nowhere for years,” said Reynoldson.

Reynoldson says he has been speaking with lawmakers in the assembly to make sure that if the bill gets a hearing, proponents of the sanctuary at least get to tell their side of it.

SJR 5 also contains what amounts to an outright falsehood — the statement that mustangs are an invasive species and don’t belong here. Scientists have established beyond any doubt that the very first horses were born right here, that they evolved for millions of years in the Great Basin, were wiped out then got reintroduced. But no one bothered to point it out before the committee voted.

Contact Senator Mark Manendo, the chairman of Senate Natural Resources Committee, to voice your opinion. He can be reached at (775) 684-6503 or by email. You can also contact Assemblywoman Maggie Carlton, the chairperson of the Natural Resources Committee, at (775) 684-8597 or by email.

Click (HERE) to view Video Report

Bogus Nevada Cow Committee Takes Impotent Swipe at Wild Horses

article by George Knapp of Las Vegas KLAS – TV

“Cattle-driven Rhoads Pushes Bulls**t Horse Law”

George Knapp

It’s great to know our state lawmakers have solved Nevada’s budget woes and have nothing else to do with their time in Carson City. How else to explain a recent vote by the Senate’s Natural Resources Committee regarding wild horses?

The committee, whose longest-serving and most influential member is Dean Rhoads, staunch defender of all that is bovine, approved a bill that urges the BLM to make sure no public land is designated as habitat for wild horses. See, public land is for one thing and one thing only — cows. Privately owned cows, that is. Maybe an occasional sheep. Sen. Rhoads personally leases 60,000 acres from BLM for his cows, and at a bargain price, too, far less than the market value of the land.

The bill, as approved by Rhoads’ committee, would make sure the number of mustangs in Nevada doesn’t get any higher than it is now, and it strongly discourages the creation of wild horse sanctuaries on public ranges. You might be asking, what authority does the state of Nevada have over federally owned lands? Good point. The answer is none. Nevada can’t dictate what is or is not done with federal land, nor does it have any say in regulating wild horses on federal land. In other words, this resolution has zero chance of affecting the public range in any positive way, but it does have the power to screw with our state in a negative way.

Sen. Rhoads is a cattle rancher. He believes that the public range is for cattle, not wild horses, even though federal law says the mustangs have a right to exist on the public lands, while cattle grazing by private ranchers is, at best, a privilege. Rhoads has campaigned against wild horses in pretty much every session of his long legislative career, even opposing a campaign by fourth-graders to declare the mustang as Nevada’s official animal. He has frequently urged the feds to round up as many wild horses as they can capture, to get them off the public lands, even though private cattle outnumber the horses 40 to 1.

If this bill makes it through the Legislature, it won’t make a rat’s ass bit of difference to the BLM’s management of public lands. After all, in just the past two years, the BLM has wiped horses off the map on more than 1 million acres of Nevada range. It doesn’t exactly need a pep talk from Carson City to round up more horses. This week, the bureau came down off the fence regarding the possibility of creating public/private horse sanctuaries, declaring that it wants to hear proposals right away. Presumably this would include the ambitious plans by philanthropist Madeleine Pickens to create a million-acre mustang eco-sanctuary in Elko County, a plan that could transform a worn-down cattle ranch into a world-class tourist attraction and education center, where visitors could enjoy wild horses in their natural environment. Mrs. Pickens has already plunked millions of her own dollars into the project. She purchased a ranch near Elko and wants to lease the attached public lands to allow wild mustangs to run free. Cattlemen are appalled because it would mean some of the public land now devoted to cows would be redesignated for horses. Perish the thought.

Is Nevada so flush with investors and new businesses that it can say no to something as unique and promising as the Pickens plan?

What worries me most is that Sen. Rhoads is seen as perhaps the key vote in plans by Democrats to raise revenue in this session, so there is a chance they might toss him this bone, allow him to get his meaningless bill through the Legislature so that he might be more inclined to side with the D’s when it comes to taxes and budget cuts.

Those hardy Nevadans who make a living by raising livestock on our oft-parched ranges have my unqualified respect. It’s a tough life, fraught with peril. Without some sort of management program, wild horses could certainly threaten the viability of some ranches. But this bill would do nothing to manage the horse herds and little to protect hard-scrabble ranch operations. This bill is pure horse shit. Anyone who cares about the mustangs should let state lawmakers know that this resolution is not only a waste of time, but could cost our state millions of dollars in outside investment and lost tourism.

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Revenge of the Bureau of Land Management

by George Knapp as printed in Las Vegas City Life

Obama’s Abbey is a Leader?!?

Bob Abbey got his itty-bitty, teeny-weenie feelings hurt

Should an agency of the federal government be able to conduct business on behalf of American taxpayers based on mood swings, capricious whims, and hissy fits? Is petulance an appropriate reaction for the head of a sprawling agency which plays a vital role in the daily life of our country?

I ask these broad questions because I don’t want some readers to tune out once they see the words “wild horses” in this column. Yeah, I know. I write about the mustangs a lot. But this isn’t a column about poor horsies shivering in the cold or staring at you with those big, sad eyes. This is about how government works, who it is beholden to, and why our country is seemingly unable to solve any problem. What’s happening at the Bureau of Land Management makes the agency a poster child for all that is wrong with government. Politicians can promise change and reform, but it is the career civil servants, the immovable, unyielding bureaucrats who decide what does or does not get done in Washington.

You may have read a few days ago BLM Director Bob Abbey issued a death sentence for a proposed wild horse eco-sanctuary in Northern Nevada. This is the plan touted for the last three years by businesswoman and philanthropist Madeleine Pickens, wife of oil tycoon T. Boone Pickens. The Associated Press reported Friday Abbey released a statement that rejected the Pickens plan for a wild horse sanctuary, saying “it would not save taxpayers any money and doesn’t include enough water and grazing area for the mustangs.”

Sounds like a fairly definitive statement from the BLM, right? The AP isn’t known for getting its stories completely wrong, especially when those stores are based on released statements, as opposed to interviews wherein someone can be misquoted, which is the favorite excuse of bureaucrats who screw up and say something they later regret. Is it possible the venerable AP got is story completely and totally wrong, that it misread the statement altogether?

I think if someone were to ask Abbey what he meant to say, they would find out that the Pickens plan is not really dead after all and that Abbey didn’t really say any such thing to a reporter. Maybe Abbey really was misquoted (doubtful), or maybe he changed his mind (possible) or maybe he realized that his decision smacked of pettiness and hurt feelings. Whatever the case, Abbey has told folks in Washington that he did not declare the Pickens plan to be dead and is willing to talk about it more. Beware the tempter tantrum of a lifelong bureaucrat with tears in his eyes and a pout on his mug. Poor widdle guy.

How do I know Abbey’s words were poorly chosen and spoken in haste? Because they are total bullshit, and BLM knows it. For the past few months, Abbey and others from the Interior Department have been bragged again and again about their plans to create public/private partnerships. A mere three weeks ago in Las Vegas, Abbey said the Pickens plan had merit and that he had high hopes for it.

As for the claims the plan won’t work, again BLM knows better. Back In December, BLM honchos met in Elko with the Pickens folks to hash out the details. They basically decided then and there to green light the ecosanctuary, starting with 1,000 horses that are now being warehoused in short-term holding corrals. The math is inescapable. It costs the government — read, taxpayers — $5.75 per day to feed a single horse in short-term holding. The horses that would be turned over to Pickens’ sanctuary would cost only $1.75 per day. Moving those initial 1,000 horses from government corrals into an ecosanctuary would save BLM $1.6 million in the first year, not a huge amount but a good start for this pilot program.

And the BLM has 40,000 will horses in its facilities. It spends tens of millions every year just to feed them. And the statement that there isn’t enough water or forage for horses on the land purchased by Pickens is so patently false that it is embarrassing to hear Abbey make such a claim. Pickens bought two ranches with 18,000 deeded acres and more than 500,000 leased public acres attached.

There isn’t enough food and water for 1,000 horses on more than half a million acres? Ridiculous. Makes one wonder how cattle ranchers have raised vast herds of cows on the same land for more than half a century. Gold mines adjacent the Pickens land have to divert tens of thousands of gallons of groundwater every single hour just to keep from being flooded. There’s plenty of water, and more than enough forage, which means Abbey has resorted to simply making stuff up as a reason to dismiss the Pickens plan.

When I say it stems from sheer petulance, I’m not kidding. BLM keeps saying the Pickens idea is promising but keeps coming up with new hoops for Pickens to jump through. She has done everything they’ve asked, put a pile of her own money on the barrel, and still can’t get BLM to give her the green light. The latest monkey wrench is the order from BLM that Pickens spend $250,000 on a 15-month engineering and environmental assessment, and when that’s finished, she might have to pony up for a full environmental impact statement, which requires another year or so.

Pickens is not used to operating at government speed. This latest stall tactic from BLM suggested to her that the agency will happily drag this out as long as possible, make it as expensive as possible, and even then there are no guarantees. BLM is quite happy to spend millions a year on the same old strategy of rounding up horses, stashing them in corrals, and caring for them until they die. Pickens decided to make her point by taking out full page ad in Politico which criticized BLM;s foot dragging.

The very next day, Abbey announced that the Pickens plan, the same one he had touted for weeks, was dead. Or maybe not. So you tell me, why did he do it?

I get the feeling the BLM is not comfortable dealing with a strong woman like Pickens. To have her take out a newspaper ad criticizing BLM was to much for the bureaucrats to handle. Even though the pilot program is solid on every level, BLM stands ready to kill it because the agency’s feelings are hurt.

That, in nutshell, is what’s wrong with government.

George Knapp is a Peabody Award-winning investigative reporter for KLAS-TV Channel 8. You can reach him at

Las Vegas Police Investigating Allegations of Battery at Summit

Story by Steven Long ~ Author and Publisher of Horseback Magazine

Wallis now under investigation in multiple states

Alleged attacker Wyoming State Rep. Sue Wallis at her troubled gathering

HOUSTON, (Horseback) – A spokesman for the Las Vegas Police Department confirmed Friday that it had accepted a complaint of battery from an Arizona wild horse advocate against Wyoming State. Rep. Sue Wallis. The investigation is active, a police spokesman said.

Simone Netherlands also said she plans to file a civil suit against Wallis and has hired Nevada attorney Matthiew Callister who did not return calls from Horseback Magazine.

Wallis is under investigation by a Wyoming district attorney after a complaint was referred by the state’s attorney general. The allegations are of alleged self dealing and ethics violations. An ethics complaint has also been filed against the Recluse, Wyoming Republican with the state legislature.

Wallis is alleged to have physically removed Simone Netherlands from “The Summit of the Horse” event at the South Point Hotel and Casino.

“My arm is now in a sling,” Netherlands told said.

The incident occurred during a speech by renowned animal behaviorist and slaughter expert Dr. Temple Grandin, Wallis allegedly charged the credentialed journalist who says her arm is healing from a horse accident. The arm has nine pins that were inserted during orthopedic surgery four weeks ago. Netherlands underwent treatment and had x-rays at a Las Vegas hospital.

“The pins didn’t move,” Netherlands said, “but there may have been movement of the bone.”

The police spokesman said that if charges against Wallis are prepared it would be a low level misdemeanor.

Netherlands operates Respect 4 Horses, an Arizona rescue.

Speaking to Horseback Online from a Las Vegas hospital emergency room immediately after the Wednesday afternoon incident, Netherlands said she had every right to be at the meeting which organizers had proclaimed to be open members of the horse industry and bona fide press.

“I had a press pass. I’m a producer of the “Meet America” series aired in Santa Barbara. They were true press credentials,” Netherlands said. “It’s a public station. We broadcast all kinds of good horse stuff from there.”

The credential was issued to Netherlands by the Summit of the Horse and her employer.

Wallis was apparently angered by statements Netherland’s made during a news conference Tuesday when the Arizona woman attacked alleged misstatements about horse processing made by Summit organizers and speakers. The comments were aired on a Las Vegas TV newscast by Emmy Award winning broadcast journalist George Knapp.

When Netherlands entered the room to cover Grandin’s speech, the Recluse, Wyoming politician allegedly exploded. Attendees had to be passed over by a hand held metal detector to enter the room. Netherlands had just gone through the device and had walked 15 feet into the conference to take her seat when Wallis approached.

No violent incidents by equine welfare advocates have ever been reported to Horseback Magazine.

Netherlands described the incident.

Injured Equine Advocate Simone Netherlands

“Sue Wallis came storming at me, she grabbed both of my arms and she immediately started pushing me out while she’s saying things like ‘You misrepresented yourself, you’re not with the press, I saw you on TV last night,’ she was like really screaming.”

“I said, Ow!” Netherlands continued. “I said, ‘Ow! Please don’t touch me, but she just kind of shoved me backwards out of the conference room. When we were all the way out she finally stopped touching me.”

“I said, excuse me, I’ve got press credentials, will you please check them out?”

She said, ‘Well, I’m taking it away. I don’t want you here and they are going to escort you off the property.”

Wallis did not call hotel security to professionally remove the woman until after the incident when Netherlands was in a hallway outside the meeting room.

Hotel security arrived and Netherlands protested being removed from the conference.

“What did I do, I didn’t disturb anyone, I basically went into the conference, I was there all day yesterday,” Netherlands told Horseback. “They told me ‘This is private property and we can escort you out for any reason, even if we don’t like your face.”

Las Vegas police were called to the scene and took a statement from Netherlands. She later filed her formal complaint at the Las Vegas Police’ Stewart substation.

Netherlands complained that she was in pain as she awaited the results of an X-ray that had just been taken at the hospital.

Hotel management was unaware of the incident when contacted by Horseback Online Wednesday evening.

Netherlands called the Las Vegas police who took a report from her but would not accept charges against Wallis after reviewing a video of the incident, telling Netherlands they didn’t believe Wallis intended to hurt her.

The sparsely attended conference was billed as a national convention of the horse industry aimed to get the equine business back on track after a severe economic slump. Thus far it is been primarily an effort to again open horse meat slaughterhouses for human consumption. The nation’s three abattoirs were closed in 2008 after the courts found state laws making them illegal were constitutional.

Recent surveys show nine out of ten Americans are opposed to the killing of horses for food, up from 70 percent in previous surveys.

Wallis has still made no comment regarding the incident after a Horseback request for her side of the story.

Visit Horseback (HERE) for additional info. and comment

Head Horse Eater Loses Cool at SlaughterFest

(The News as We See It) by R.T. Fitch ~ Author/Director of HfH Advisory Council

Sue Wallis Shows Loser Frustration by Man-handling Reporter

Seated, Simone Netherlands, John Holland and R.T. Fitch at March for the Mustangs, D.C. 3/2010

Today, during the afternoon session of the much beleaguered pro-horse slaughter summit in Las Vegas a free-lance reporter and benign horse trainer was strong armed out of the conference room by the Bloodfest’s lead supporter, Wyoming State Representative Sue Wallis, currently under investigation for fraud and ethics charges.

Equine Advocate and citizen journalist Simone Netherlands had just entered the conference room when Sue Wallis accosted the formerly welcomed credentialed reporter and was physically forced out of the room.

“I just walked in and could see Wallis making a beeline straight for me, she certainly had a mission in mind.” reported Netherlands, “Without any verbal explanation Wallis grabbed my healing broken arm and tugged for me to leave.  I actually said ‘ouch’ and asked her to take her hands off from me but she continued to pull me out of the room.”

“Once outside of the room,” Netherlands continued, “Wallis said that ‘they’ had seen me on the televised George Knapp report the night before and because of my opinion and stance against the slaughter of horses for food they were rescinding my press credentials and I was not allowed to attend.  She said that I was an interviewee and not an interviewer.”

During this telephone exchange with this reporter Netherlands was further accosted outside the conference room and in the hallway by Sue Wallis accompanied by security guards.  I asked Simone to keep her phone on speaker and listened to the entire exchange as she was escorted out of the convention area and too the Casino.

Netherlands, likewise, complained that her healing arm was in pain due to Wallis’s physical abuse and consequently contacted law enforcement authorities to file a complaint against the Slaughterfest’s promoter.  Authorities did arrive and interviewed both Netherlands and Wallis then reviewed the surveillance tape.  Due to the fact that the authorities did not believe that Wallis willfully and intentionally harmed Netherlands they did not charge Wallis with battery but Netherlands did file a report, none the less.

At the time of this writing Simone was at a local emergency room where her healing arm, broken during a horse training incident, is being x-rayed for damage from Wallis’ unprovoked attacked.

Netherland’s earlier filed report on the failings of the “Summit” will be forth coming.

Updates to follow.

Press and Guests Turn On Slaughterfest Organizers

(The News as We See It) by R.T. Fitch ~ Author/Director of HfH Advisory Council

Speakers didn’t conform and press turned ugly

It doesn’t take someone with much more than a grade school education to quickly figure out that self-appointed horse eaters, “Slaughterhouse” Sue Wallis and Dave “Doink” Duquette have managed, once again, to shoot each other squarely between the eyes with their failed SlaughterFest being held in Las Vegas this week.  Their message that Eating horses is Helping Horses has not only fallen on its perverted face but it has brought their entire bloody and distorted message before the public in a very profound and informative way.

News coverage on the dirty event has been brutal against the agenda to turn companion horses into fillets and steaks for human consumption while the same coverage has been extensive and is actually working to support the pro-horse movement to bring the truth on the issue of horse slaughter to the American public.

With greed and deception being the major drivers behind the Wallis/Duquette agenda their hopes that the BLM Director, Bob Abbey, would side with them regarding wild horses and the Director just would not go there or support such a ludicrous stance.  After months of touting Abbey’s much-anticipated speech, Duquette simply glossed over his appearance on his Facbook page as the Director did not say what Wallis and Duquette wanted to hear.

Wallis and Duquette made a very serious tactical error in attempting to deceive the public regarding their trumped-up issue of the unwanted horse and have managed to not only energize the movement against them but to help expand and educate the public on the truth of their bloody agenda.  Wallis is already under investigation for fraud and ethics violations while a personal friend of Duquette’s won the long-awaited drawing of a Dodge Truck as a door prize to the BloodFest.

To see George Knapp‘s detailed coverage of this travesty gone bad click (HERE).

For additional Channel 8 video coverage of the Wallis/Duquette fiasco click (HERE)

Warning, both of these reports are graphic and exactly the truth that Wallis and Duquette do not want you to see.  Two people who promote Horse Slaughter yet neither have been to a Horse Slaughter plant.

Embattled BLM Director Refuses to Speak With Horseback Magazine

Opinion by Steven Long ~ Editor/Publisher of Horseback Magazine (Live Link)

Bob Abbey Dodges Probing Questions and the Truth

BLM's "Who Needs the Truth" Abbey

HOUSTON, (Horseback) – Let’s see now, we’ve been attempting to get an on the record interview with federal Bureau of Land Management Director Bob Abbey since at least August. 2009. With every attempt, and there must have been at least ten of them, Horseback has been rebuffed. It isn’t as if we have been idle covering the agency’s treatment of the wild horses in its charge. I suspect we’ve probably done more stories than any other news organization, with the possible exception of veteran Las Vegas broadcaster George Knapp.

It’s not as if we are obscure. Tens of thousands come to our website for news of the equine world according to our stats. Our print publication boasts around 50,000 readers in four states, and subscribers scattered here and abroad.

And it’s not as if Horseback Magazine or its editor is an upstart in the world of journalism. I long ago sent Abbey my bio including a reasonably comprehensive list of where I’ve been and what I’ve done in my chosen work for close to 40 years. Still, the director has refused to give me the time of day.

But facts are facts, and one indisputable one is that I ask tough, sometimes very tough, questions no matter what party, governor, or president, appoints a high government official. Despite nationwide protests, BLM has turned a tin ear to calls to stop its relentless capture of the nation’s wild horses with 26 roundups in the first quarter fiscal 2011 scheduled and 32 recorded for all of 2010.

Yet Abbey hides behind his very accomplished Washington spokesman, one of the best in the business. So it came as no surprise that after we broke the story that the BLM director had accepted an invitation to speak before a group in Las Vegas whose sole purpose for meeting is to legalize horse slaughter in the United States, he issued a statement through his government spokesman. In the comment, Abbey makes the far from comforting statement that the agency has the statutory authority to legally kill horses under the 1971 Free Roaming Wild Horse and Burro Act saying “The Department of Interior and the BLM have already removed from the discussion table any consideration of the euthanasia of healthy wild horses and the unlimited sale of older horses even though these legal authorities exist…” Of course the fact remains, the agency could change course with the blink of the director’s bureaucratic eyelash. And to translate, in BLM bureacratese, the term “Unlimited Sale” means selling the animals to virtually anybody, including killer buyers who peddle the creatures to slaughterhouses across the Mexican and Canadian borders.

Abbey notes in his statement that he has met with the Humane Society of the United States. Animal welfare advocates concerned with the wholesale capture of and captivity of wild horses claim HSUS is conniving with the BLM to sterilize vast numbers of Mustangs in its use of PZP, a fertility drug that inhibits a mare’s ability to reproduce. Abbey also bragged in his statement that he met recently with representatives of the Cloud Foundation. Ironically, the foundation has been at odds with BLM for years, most recently for installing fencing along with the U.S. Forest Service where none is needed in the Pryor Mountains, and a cattle guard, lethal to horses. The truth is that Cloud raised enough sand to get safeguards welded onto the deadly device. Abbey has also met with billionaire Madeleine Pickens who recently announced she is opening a huge ranch for Mustangs the BLM has already rendered unable to breed.  He neglected to mention that Thursday the Texas woman wrote him a no holds barred letter castigating his appearance before the Las Vegas group whose claims have been repeatedly challenged as unfounded.

So come on Bob, let’s talk. I’m attaching the link to my personal web page,  You’ll find virtually every story I’ve written about the BLM there in an archive. You’ll also find my bio. You’ll be able to see the books I have written, one of which won a State Bar of Texas award for excellence.  I think that speaks for itself. The book is found in the library of many medical and nursing schools.

So how about it Bob, again, let’s talk.

Click (HERE) to read the story in it’s entirety