Transcript: Rescuing Distressed Animals | May 13, 2019

Steve sits in the studio. He's slim, clean-shaven, in his fifties, with short curly brown hair. He's wearing a gray suit, checkered pink shirt, and spotted gray tie.

A caption on screen reads "Rescuing distressed animals. @spaikin, @theagenda."

Steve says IF YOU'VE BEEN A
WATCHER OF TVO CURRENT AFFAIRS
PROGRAMMING OVER THE PAST
QUARTER CENTURY, YOU SURELY WILL
RECOGNIZE ERIC MARGOLIS.
ERIC, OF COURSE, HAS BEEN A
FREQUENT CONTRIBUTOR TO OUR
FOREIGN AFFAIRS COVERAGE.
WHAT YOU MAY NOT KNOW IS THAT,
ALONG WITH HIS WIFE DANA, THE
COUPLE HAVE DEVOTED THEMSELVES
TO RESCUING ANIMALS IN DISTRESS
ALL OVER THE WORLD.
AND SO WE'VE INVITED DANA AND
ERIC MARGOLIS TO OUR STUDIO TO
LEARN MORE ABOUT THEIR EFFORTS.

Eric is in his sixties, clean-shaven, with wavy white hair. He's wearing glasses, a beige coat and a black shirt.
Dana is in her fifties, with black hair in a short bob and bangs. She's wearing a black turtleneck.

Steve continues IT IS SO GOOD TO SEE YOU AGAIN.
GREAT HELMSMAN.

Eric says GREAT TO BE BACK.

Steve says AND YOU FOR THE FIRST
TIME EVER ON THIS PROGRAM.

Dana says YES.

Steve says GREAT TO HAVE YOU BOTH
HERE. ERIC, PEOPLE WATCHING THIS
OBVIOUSLY WILL KNOW ABOUT YOUR
COLUMNS THAT YOU WROTE.
THEY WILL KNOW ABOUT YOUR BOOKS,
YOUR PUNDITRY ON FOREIGN
AFFAIRS.
I'M NOT SURE VERY MANY KNOW THAT
THIS HAS BEEN AN ISSUE NEAR AND
DEAR TO YOUR HEART.
SINCE WHEN?

The caption changes to "Eric Margolis. Eric S. Margolis Family Foundation."
Then, it changes again to "A new mission."

Eric says OH, MANY YEARS, BUT IT'S BEEN
DEVELOPING IN SIZE AND
INTENSITY, AND NOW THAT I'VE
GIVEN UP MY BUSINESS INTERESTS,
I HAVE MORE TIME TO DEVOTE TO
HELPING THE PLIGHT OF ANIMALS IN
DISTRESS.

Steve says WE SHOULD SAY YOU WERE
MR. JAMIESON VITAMINS FOR MANY,
MANY YEARS, AND YOU SOLD THAT,
AND SO YOU HAVE TIME TO DEVOTE
TO THIS, AND I'M GUESSING YOU'RE
THE ONE WHO PROBABLY HELPED HIM
SEE THE LIGHT ON THIS?

Dana says YES.

Steve says YES.
WHAT BRINGS YOU TO THIS ISSUE?

The caption changes to "Dana Margolis. Eric S. Margolis Family Foundation."

Dana says WELL, I'VE ALWAYS LOVED
ANIMALS, AND THIS IS SOMETHING
THAT IS CLOSE TO MY HEART, AND
IT WAS SOMETHING I THINK THAT
BROUGHT ERIC AND I TOGETHER.
IT WAS A GENUINE LOVE AND
COMPASSION FOR THE PLIGHT OF
ANIMALS.

Steve says IT'S ONE THING TO LOVE
ANIMALS.
IT'S ANOTHER THING TO BE
PREPARED TO SPEND THE SUMS THAT
YOU TWO SPEND IN ORDER TO TRAVEL
HALFWAY AROUND THE WORLD AND
RESCUE ANIMALS IN DISTRESS.
WHY THAT COMMITMENT?

Dana says BECAUSE ANIMALS DON'T CHOOSE
TO BE IN THESE SITUATIONS.
THEY DON'T CHOOSE TO BE IN WARS.
THEY DON'T CHOOSE TO BE EXPOSED
TO BOMBINGS AND DAILY GUNFIRE,
AND THERE ARE SO MANY COUNTRIES
TODAY THAT ARE IN TURMOIL, AND
CHANCES ARE THAT THERE ARE
DECREPIT, ABANDONED... AND THESE
ANIMALS ARE LEFT TO DIE.

Steve says JUST TO FURTHER
ENHANCE YOUR BONA FIDES, THE TWO
OF YOU HAVE A PLACE HERE IN
TORONTO, BUT YOU DON'T LIVE
THERE ALONE.
WHO DO YOU SHARE THE PLACE WITH, ERIC?

Eric says WE HAVE ALL KINDS OF CATS.
I'M A GREAT CAT LOVER.
I THINK IT WAS FOUR CATS NOW.

Dana says WE HAVE THREE CATS.
WE HAVE THREE CATS.

Eric says AND THREE DOGS.
ONE OF WHOM IS BLIND AND DEAF.
DANA RESCUED FROM NEW YORK, POOR
LITTLE THING.
AND WE ALL LIVE TOGETHER VERY
HAPPILY.
IN FACT, AS MARK TWAIN ONCE
SAID, YOU KNOW, AS SOON AS I GET
OLDER I'M CONVINCED MY DOGS ARE
GOING TO HAVE IT.
I'M JUST NOT SURE ABOUT THE...
GOING TO HEAVEN, I'M JUST NOT
SURE ABOUT THE REST OF MY FRIENDS.

Steve says I WANT TO TALK ABOUT
THE GAZA.
ONE OF THE PROJECTS THAT YOU
WERE BOTH DEEPLY INVOLVED IN WAS
HELPING RESCUE ANIMALS WHO WERE
IN DANGER AT A ZOO IN THE GAZA
STRIP, WHICH AS WE KNOW IS ONE
OF THE MOST UNFORTUNATE PLACES
ANYWHERE ON EARTH.
WE HAVE A LITTLE VIDEO SNIPPET
WE WANT TO SET THIS UP WITH.
WE'LL PLAY THAT, AND THEN WE'LL
COME BACK AND CHAT.
SHELDON, THE CLIP, PLEASE.

The caption changes to "From a zoo in Gaza."

A clip plays on screen. Shaky footage shows a veterinarian assisting a furry animal on a stretcher.

A male voice says
We succeeded today to get approval from the government to take the animals out of Gaza.

As men lift an animal from inside a cage, a voice says
Okay, 1, 2, 3.

Several men carry a sedated lion out of a cage.

A caption reads "Doctor Amir Khalil. Four Paws."

Amir, in his late forties, clean-shaven, says
The lions are in a very small place. They've never touched grass in their life, it is very sad.

A fox cries inside a small cage.

The caption changes to "Marion Lombard. Four Paws."

Marion, in her thirties, with long blond hair, says
They are really scared in their enclosures.

A male voice says
We will take the animals in bad condition. The lions, hyena, wolves, foxes. The dogs and cats, emu, ostrich, pelicans, peacock, porcupines.

The clip ends.

Steve says HMM.
TELL US ABOUT THIS OPERATION,
BECAUSE THIS WAS 47 ANIMALS
RESCUED FROM A ZOO IN THE GAZA.
HOW DID THIS ALL COME TOGETHER?

The caption changes to "Dana Margolis, @danamargolis."

Dana says WELL, WE HAVE A RELATIONSHIP
WITH A GROUP BASED OUT OF
VIENNA, AUSTRIA, NAMED FOUR PAWS
INTERNATIONAL.

Steve says FOUR PAWS?

Dana says YES.

Steve says APPROPRIATELY NAMED.

Dana says YES.
AND THEY HAVE BEEN IN
COMMUNICATION WITH THE VARIOUS
GOVERNMENTS FOR A COUPLE OF
YEARS.
THEY'VE DONE SOME RESCUES IN
GAZA BEFORE AT OTHER ZOOS, AND
THIS ZOO IS LOCATED IN RAFF HAH,
AND THEY HAD BEEN NEGOTIATING
WITH THE OWNERS TO ATTEMPT TO
CLOSE IT DOWN AND TO TAKE THE
ANIMALS OUT BECAUSE THE
CONDITIONS WERE DECREPIT.
SO I HAD BEEN IN COMMUNICATION
WITH MY CONTACTS, AND WE DECIDED
THAT WE WERE GOING TO STAGE AN
INTERVENTION AND HELP CLOSE THE
ZOO DOWN.

Steve says ERIC, WHY WAS THIS
PARTICULAR MISSION MEANINGFUL TO YOU?

The caption changes to "Eric Margolis, @ericmargolis."

Eric says WELL, I FELT HEARTBROKEN FOR
THESE... I DON'T LIKE TO SEE
ANIMALS IN ANY ZOO, IN ANY CAGES.
I WOULD LIKE TO GET RID OF ALL
OF THEM EXCEPT FOR CONSERVING
ENDANGERED SPECIES.
AND THESE POOR ANIMALS WERE IN A
JAIL WITHIN A JAIL, WHICH IS
REALLY... GAZA, AS YOU SAID,
IT'S A MISERABLE PLACE.
WE HAD PREVIOUSLY WORKED WITH
FOUR PAWS TO RESCUE THE ENTIRE
ZOO IN ALEPPO, SYRIA, WHICH WAS
EVEN MORE FRAUGHT BECAUSE THE
WAR THERE WAS STILL GOING ON,
AND IT WAS A VERY ELABORATE
OPERATION.
WE HAD TO GET... NEGOTIATE WITH
ALL KINDS OF UNSAVOURY PEOPLE.
WE HAD TO HIRE ARMED GUNMEN TO
ESCORT US OUT THROUGH REBEL
TERRITORY.
WE FINALLY GOT THEM TO TURKEY,
AND THEN THE FUN-LOVING TURKS
WANTED TO KEEP THEM.
SO WE HAD A HELL OF A TIME, BUT
AT THE END OF THE STORY, THESE
GREAT FOUR PAWS PEOPLE, WHO DO
GREAT WORK, THEY MANAGED TO GET
ALL OF THE ANIMALS OUT TO
JORDAN, TO A WONDERFUL WILDLIFE
SANCTUARY THERE CALLED AL MA'WA.

Steve says WHAT DOES THAT MEAN?

Eric says THE... SANCTUARY.

Steve says THE SANCTUARY.
OKAY.

Eric says YES.

The caption changes to "Connect with us: Twitter: @theagenda; Facebook, agendaconnect@tvo.org, Instagram."

Steve says THIS GAZA RESCUE
WOULD HAVE BEEN PARTICULARLY
COMPLICATED BECAUSE YOU CAN'T GO
FROM GAZA TO JORDAN WITHOUT
GOING THROUGH ISRAEL, SO YOU
NEED KIND OF TRIPARTITE
AGREEMENT TO DO THIS.
HOW DID THAT HAPPEN?

Dana says THAT IS DUE TO THE STELLAR
NEGOTIATION BASED OUT OF FOR
PAWS INTERNATIONAL.
THEY WERE ABLE TO GET THE OKAY
FROM THE JORDANIAN OFFICIALS,
FROM ISRAEL AND FROM HAMAS, WHO
ARE THE GOVERNMENT IN GAZA, TO
OPEN THE BORDERS, TO LET THESE
PEOPLE IN.
IT WASN'T WITHOUT SOME
CHALLENGES, BECAUSE WHEN ONE
CROSSES FROM ONE BORDER COUNTRY
INTO ANOTHER, VEHICLES NEED TO
BE CHECKED.
THEY NEED TO BE CHANGED, AND IT
TAKES A LOT OF RESOURCES AND A
LOT OF FUNDING, A LOT OF
NEGOTIATIONS.
IT DEPENDS ON WHO'S AT THE
BORDER AT THAT TIME.
YOU MAY HAVE AN AGREEMENT FROM
ONE ENTITY, BUT IF THE BORDER
CROSSINGS CHANGE, IF THE
OFFICERS ARE DIFFERENT, THEY MAY
NOT HAVE GOTTEN THE MEMO.

Steve says ERIC, YOU KNOW THAT
REGION OF THE WORLD VERY WELL.
HOW EXTRAORDINARY IS IT TO GET
THE ISRAELIS, THE JORDANIANS AND
HAMAS ALL ON THE SAME PAGE FOR
ANYTHING?

Eric says IT'S ONE MIRACLE OF A
LIFETIME, AND WE'VE USED IT UP.
IT IS EXTRAORDINARY.
KUDOS TO THE DOCTOR YOU SAW ON
THE FILM CLIP, DR. HAH LITTLE,
AN EGYPTIAN VETERINARIAN, ALSO A
GREAT DIPLOMAT, AND HE MANAGED
TO TALK NOT ONLY WITH THE TURKS
AND THE SHIITES IN IRAQ, JUST A
GREAT MAN.
HE MANAGED TO GET US SET UP FOR
THIS, AND THEN JUST AS WE WERE
READY TO GO AND PEOPLE FROM FOR
PAWS CAME FROM ABROAD, AROUND
THE GLOBE, ALL ALL OF A SUDDEN
SOMEBODY FIRED A ROCKET FROM
GAZA INTO ISRAEL AND THE
ISRAELIS WENT BERSERK AND WENT
BOMBING AND SHELLING, AS THEY
USUALLY DO.
HAMAS DENIED ANY RESPONSIBILITY
FOR IT.
IT WAS AN ACCIDENT.
I DON'T KNOW.
IT LOOKED LIKE WE WERE GOING TO
BE PLUNGED INTO WAR.
AND THEN COMING RIGHT DOWN THE
ROAD WERE THE ISRAELI ELECTIONS.
AND SO THE WINDOW OF OPPORTUNITY
KEPT SHRINKING AND SHRINKING,
BUT SOMEHOW DR. KHALILI WORKED
HIS MAGIC, AND WE SAID OUR
PRAYERS, AND A LITTLE WINDOW
OPENED UP, AND THAT'S WHEN THEY
FINALLY MANAGED TO GET THE
ANIMALS OUT OF GAZA, ACROSS
ISRAEL, AND THEN INTO JORDAN.
THREE MIRACLES IN ONE.

Steve says HMM.
NOW IT'S AN EXTREMELY STRESSFUL
SITUATION TO TRY TO... I MEAN, I
PRESUME SOME OF THE ANIMALS NEED
TO BE ANESTHETIZED IN ORDER TO
GET THEM OUT.

Eric says YES.

Steve says SO THERE'S THAT.
THERE'S THE POLITICS INVOLVED.
THERE'S THE MOVING OF THE
ANIMALS, THE PACKING UP, THE
UNPACKING AND SO ON.
YOU KNOW, I GUESS IT'S WORTH
DOING, RIGHT, BUT IT'S CERTAINLY
A... IT'S A COMPLICATED
SITUATION, ISN'T IT?
HOW TOUGH IS IT?

Dana says IT'S VERY TOUGH.
EVEN FOR THESE SEASONED
PROFESSIONALS, AND THEY ARE
PROFESSIONALS.
BUT THEY HAVE THIS DOWN TO AN
ART.
I SAW THEM FIRST-HAND.
ACTUALLY, WE BOTH DID WHEN WE
WERE IN JORDAN.
IT IS A NO FRILLS OPERATION.
THEY TRAVEL BARGAIN BASEMENT
WAY.
THEY DON'T SLEEP.
THEY DRINK COFFEE.
THEY... SOME OF THEM SMOKE A LOT
OF CIGARETTES.
THAT'S THEIR DIET.
BUT THEY ARE TOP GRADE A AT WHAT
THEY DO.

Steve says NO GOOD DEED GOES
UNPUNISHED, RIGHT?
SO HERE'S THE SORT OF SNIPPY
QUESTION ABOUT THIS.
IS THERE ANY DOWNSIDE TO THIS IN
AS MUCH AS LIFE IN THE GAZA,
ERIC, IS BLEAK ON THE BEST OF
DAYS, AND THIS ZOO WAS
PRESUMABLY PROVIDING AT LEAST
SOME JOY TO THE CHILDREN WHO
LIVE IN THE GAZA, AND NOW THAT
ZOO IS GONE.
IS THAT A PROBLEM?

Eric says YOU KNOW, NOW THAT WE HAVE TV
EVERYWHERE, CHILDREN, WE DON'T
NEED TO KEEP THESE ANIMAL
PRISONS, AS I CALL THEM, TO
AMUSE CHILDREN.
YOU CAN WATCH THE ANIMALS ON TV
RATHER THAN TORTURING THESE
ANIMALS, BECAUSE WE HAVE SEEN
THEM UP CLOSE, AND YOU SEE HOW
IMPRISONMENT IS DRIVING THEM
INSANE.
YOU SEE BEARS, YOU SEE IT WITH
ELEPHANTS.
IT'S HEART-BREAKING, AND WE DO
THIS FOR OUR SPORT AND PLEASURE.
IT IS REALLY A CRIME AGAINST
NATURE TO KEEP THESE BEAUTIFUL
CREATURES LOCKED UP.

Steve says WHAT'S YOUR VIEW ON THAT?

Dana says I AGREE 100 percent.
THESE ANIMALS ARE NOT IN THEIR
NATURAL HABITAT.
THE MAJORITY OF THEM, AS YOU
PROBABLY KNOW, THEY WERE
SMUGGLED FROM EGYPT INTO GAZA
THROUGH SOME OF THESE TUNNELS,
TUNNELS THAT YOU CAN'T STAND UP
IN, TUNNELS THAT GROWN MEN HAVE
TO CRAWL THROUGH, AND SO THEY
WOULD PULL THESE ANIMALS THROUGH
THESE TUNNELS, AND SOME OF THE
TUNNELS ARE 6 KILOMETRES LONG,
OR WE ARE 6 KILOMETRES LONG.
WHEN THEY GET TO THEIR END
LOCATION AND THEY ARE STUCK IN
THESE CONCRETE SMALL CAGES.
THEY DON'T TOUCH GRASS.
THEY DON'T TOUCH GROUND.
THEY DON'T SEE THE SKY.
AND ALL THEY DO IS PACE.

Steve says SO IT'S A MISERABLE EXISTENCE.

Dana says IT'S A MISERABLE EXISTENCE.

Eric says WE'RE RESCUING BEARS RIGHT
NOW IN ALBANIA, AND IT'S THE
SAME THING.
THEY ARE KEPT IN LITTLE CAGES IN
FRONT OF RESTAURANTS.
IT'S ATTRACTIONS.
DANCING BEARS.
IT'S TERRIBLE.

Steve says YOU DID REFERENCE THE
SYRIAN RESCUE MISSION BACK IN
2017, AND WE DO HAVE SOME
PHOTOS OF THAT.
SO LET'S BRING THESE PICTURES UP
AND WE'LL HAVE YOU DESCRIBE WHAT
WE'RE SEEING.
TAKE US THROUGH THIS, IF YOU WOULD.
WHAT ARE WE LOOKING AT HERE?

In a picture, a skinny and wounded lioness lies inside a small cage with a tiny lion cub at her side breastfeeding from her.

Dana says THIS IS A LIONESS WHO WAS
RESCUED FROM THE ABANDONED ZOO
IN SYRIA, AND AS YOU CAN TELL,
WHEN SHE IS ARRIVED, SHE WAS IN
BAD SHAPE.
SHE HAD OPEN WOUNDS ON HER BODY.
SHE IS RELAXING.
SHE WAS PREGNANT.
THEY REALIZED SHE WAS PREGNANT
ON ROUTE, AND SHE GAVE BIRTH TO
THIS LITTLE LION.

Steve says AND MOTHER AND CHILD
DOING OKAY?

Dana says THE MOTHER WAS FINE AND
THE CHILD DIDN'T MAKE IT.

Steve says DIDN'T MAKE IT.

In another picture, a raggedy and dirty tiger slams its head against a metal fence.

Dana says NO.
THIS IS A BEAUTIFUL TIGER.
HIS NAME WAS SULTAN, AND SULTAN
WAS IN SYRIA AS WELL.
HE ACTUALLY WENT INTO CARDIAC
ARREST DURING THE RESCUE OUT
OF... EN ROUTE FROM TURKEY TO
JORDAN AND WAS RESUSCITATED BY
ONE OF THE VETERINARIANS AND
MADE IT TO JORDAN.
UNFORTUNATELY HAD KIDNEY DISEASE
FROM YEARS OF MALNUTRITION AND
NEGLECT AND PASSED AWAY.

Steve says AND THERE'S OUR LAST
SHOT HERE.
WHAT'S THIS?

In another picture, a young lion in an open-air cage roars at a young man standing on the other side of a reinforced metal fence.

Dana says THIS IS ONE OF THE LIONS FROM
OUR SYRIAN RESCUE.
AND THIS IS AL MA'WA.
THIS PLACE FOR THESE ANIMALS IS
HEAVEN ON EARTH.

Steve says THIS IS THE SANCTUARY
IN JORDAN?

Dana says YES.

Eric says WHICH IS PRESIDED OVER BY THE
SISTER OF THE KING OF JORDAN.

Steve says SO NO ONE'S GOING TO
MESS WITH...

Eric says PRINCESS ALIA.
AND SHE DOES A GREAT JOB...
ACROSS THE MIDDLE EAST, EXCEPT
FOR ISRAEL, WHERE ANIMALS LIVE A
DECENT LIFE.
AND SO SHE RUNS THE AL MA'WA
WITH A STERN HAND.

The caption changes to "Around the world."

Steve says WHEN YOU TRIED TO
RESCUE ANIMALS IN A WAR ZONE,
THERE IS OBVIOUSLY A GREAT DEAL
OF RISK NOT JUST TO THE ANIMALS
BUT OBVIOUSLY TO THE PEOPLE WHO
ARE TAKING PERSONAL RISK TO GET
THEM OUT.
HOW DO YOU CONVINCE PEOPLE TO
PUT THEIR LIVES AT RISK TO
RESCUE ANIMALS?

Dana says THEY ARE PASSIONATE ABOUT
THIS CAUSE.
THEY ARE ONE OF THE ONLY GROUPS
I HAVE MET IN THIS WORLD WHO ARE
WILLING TO GO INTO WAR-TORN
COUNTRIES TO RESCUE THESE
ANIMALS WHO HAVE BEEN FORGOTTEN
AND NEGLECTED AND LEFT BEHIND.
THEY ARE VICTIMS OF WAR.
AND THEY HAVE COMPASSION.
THEY HAVE TRUE COMPASSION FOR
THEIR CAUSE.

Steve says NOW ERIC'S ALREADY
TOLD US THAT SOMETIMES THE
SHELLING DOESN'T STOP JUST
BECAUSE THE RESCUING IS GOING
ON.
HAVE ANY OF THESE PEOPLE BEEN
WOUNDED OR KILLED IN THE COURSE
OF TRYING TO RESCUE ANIMALS?

The caption changes to "Watch us anytime: tvo.org, Twitter: @theagenda, Facebook Live."

Dana says NO.
HOWEVER, THEY ARE VERY SMART
ABOUT THEIR RESCUE.
IN THE CASE OF SYRIA, THERE WAS
A SECURITY TEAM WHO WENT IN TO
RESCUE THE ANIMALS, AND THIS
SECURITY TEAM TOOK SIX HOURS TO
GET OUT OF SYRIA WHEN IT WAS
ACTUALLY A HALF AN HOUR DRIVE.
THAT'S A STORY UNTO ITSELF.
BUT THESE WERE INDIVIDUALS WHO
MAY BE WELL VERSED IN DEALING
WITH WAR-TORN COUNTRIES.

Steve says ARE THEY ARMED?

Dana says YES.

Steve says HAVE THEY HAD TO USE
THEIR WEAPONS?

Dana says NO.

Steve says THEY HAVE NOT YET.

Eric says NOT YET.

Steve says NOT YET, YEAH.

Eric says IT'S A REAL RAMBO TYPE OF
OPERATION, BUT IT'S DONE WITH
FULL HEARTS BY THESE PEOPLE.
I'M AMAZED THAT THEY ARE SO
DILIGENT.
AND THEY FLY FROM DIFFERENT
PARTS OF THE WORLD, AND THEY
LIVE ON CIGARETTES AND COFFEE.
SOUNDS LIKE A JOURNAL ITSELF,
LIKE I USED TO DO IN THE MIDDLE
EAST MYSELF.

Steve says NOW IF YOU'RE TRYING,
LET'S DO THE GAZA OPERATION, IF
YOU'RE TRYING TO RESCUE 47
ANIMALS FROM GAZA, HOW LONG DOES
IT TAKE?

Dana says THERE MAY BE A DIFFERENCE
BETWEEN THE AMOUNT OF TIME IT
SHOULD TAKE AND THE AMOUNT OF
TIME THEY WERE GIVEN.

Steve says OKAY.

Dana says SO MY UNDERSTANDING IS ONCE
THEY ENTERED GAZA, THEY WERE
THERE FOR LESS THAN 24 HOURS.
THERE WERE FIVE PEOPLE FROM FOR
PAWS INTERNATIONAL WHO WERE
ALLOWED TO DO THIS, AND A LOT OF
VOLUNTEERS, LOCAL VOLUNTEERS
STEPPED UP TO ASSIST BECAUSE
THERE WERE 47 ANIMALS THAT
NEEDED TO BE CRATED.
A LOT OF THEM NEEDED TO BE
DARTED SO THEY COULD MOVE THEM
INTO KRAITS.

Steve says DARTED MEANS ANESTHETIZED?

Eric says YES.

Steve says GOT IT.

Eric says AND DRIVEN OUT OF GAZA INTO
ISRAEL BEFORE THE BORDER CLOSED.

Eric says AND HAMAS ON THE PALESTINIAN
SIDE AND ISRAEL WERE USUALLY
TRYING TO SHOOT EACH OTHER, WERE
REMARKABLY COOPERATIVE IN THIS.
I DON'T THINK THE ISRAELIS
REALLY WANTED TO ADVERTISE IT,
BUT THEY WORKED TOGETHER, AND
THEY PULLED OFF THIS SMALL MIRACLE.

Steve says NOW THE 47 ANIMALS
THAT WERE RESCUED, IS THAT ALL
OF THEM?

Dana says YES.

Steve says THEY GOT THEM ALL OUT?

Dana says YES.

Steve says AND HAVE YOU BEEN ABLE
TO SORT OF CHECK BACK IN WITH
THESE ANIMALS IN JORDAN AND HOW
THEY ARE DOING NOW?

Dana says YES.

Steve says AND WHAT'S THE VERDICT?

Dana says THE VERDICT WAS GOOD.
THERE WERE FIVE LIONS RESCUED.
TWO OF THE LIONS WERE
IMMEDIATELY FLOWN DOWN TO A FOUR PAWS SANCTUARY BASED IN SOUTH
AFRICA.
THEY ARE ON A 258-ACRE BIG CAT
SANCTUARY IN SOUTH AFRICA.
AND THE OTHER THREE ARE AT
AL MA'WA.
AND IT'S BEAUTIFUL TO SEE.
YOU SEE THEM RELEASED.
THEY DON'T KNOW WHAT GRASS IS.
THEY DON'T KNOW WHAT SUNSHINE
IS.
THEY'VE NEVER SEEN IT.
THEY'VE NEVER FELT IT.
AND YOU CAN SEE THEIR TRUE
CHARACTERS STARTING TO COME
THROUGH.

Steve says CAN I ASK YOU A BIT OF
A... YOU'RE SUCH A HARD-NOSED
JOURNALIST, BUT I WANT TO ASK
YOU A NICE TOUCHY FEELY QUESTION
HERE.
HOW DOES IT MAKE YOU FEEL WHEN
YOU SEE WHAT YOU'VE BEEN ABLE TO
ACHIEVE HERE?

Eric says IT MAKES ME FEEL GOOD.
I'M VERY HAPPY FOR THE ANIMALS.
NOT SO MUCH FOR MYSELF.
VERY HAPPY FOR THE ANIMALS, BUT
THERE'S SO MUCH MORE TO DO.
WHAT WE'RE DOING AN ENDLESS, A
DAILY STRUGGLE.
GO ON FACEBOOK AND ALL YOU SEE
IS ANIMALS SUFFERING.
PEOPLE APPROACH US FOR DIFFERENT
CHARITIES.
WE DO THINGS HERE IN CANADA TOO,
AND WE'VE BEEN RESCUING DOGS
FROM KOREA WHO WERE GOING TO BE
EATEN.
AND CATS.
AND SO IT'S AN ENDLESS JOB.
YOU BECOME A LITTLE HARDENED
AFTER A WHILE, BUT I LOVE DOING
IT.
I THINK IT'S BETTER THAN MAKING
MONEY.

Steve says WELL, SINCE YOU RAISE
MONEY, AM I ALLOWED TO ASK HOW
MUCH YOUR FOUNDATION SPENT TO
RESCUE THESE ANIMALS?
WELL, I'M ALLOWED TO ASK.
YOU DON'T HAVE TO TELL ME, BUT I
AM ALLOWED TO ASK.

Eric says WELL, LET'S SAY THAT'S WHY
I'M NOT DRIVING A LAMBORGHINI.

Steve says ALL RIGHT, GOOD ENOUGH.
HAVE YOU GOT YOUR EYES FIXED ON
YOUR NEXT MISSION YET?

Dana says YES.

Steve says CAN YOU TELL US WHAT IT IS?

Dana says IT MAY BE IN NORTH AMERICA.

Steve says OKAY.
SO WHEN YOU SAY IT MAY BE IN
NORTH AMERICA, I'M GOING TO
INFER FROM THAT THAT IT IS IN
NORTH AMERICA.
AND I THINK PEOPLE WOULD
REASONABLY ASK, IT'S NOT A ZOO,
I PRESUME, RIGHT?
YOU'RE NOT GOING TO BE RESCUING
ANY ANIMALS OUT OF A ZOO.
LOOK AT HER SMILE.
SHE DOESN'T WANT TO TELL ME TOO
MUCH HERE.
BUT OKAY, SO LET ME PUT IT THIS
WAY.
WHY WOULD ANIMALS IN NORTH
AMERICA... UNDER WHAT
CIRCUMSTANCES WOULD ANIMALS IN
NORTH AMERICA NEED RESCUING?

Dana says THERE ARE PRIVATE ZOOS IN
NORTH AMERICA.

Steve says PRIVATE ZOOS?

Dana says THERE ARE ROADSIDE ZOOS IN
NORTH AMERICA.

Eric says YOU HAVE DOWN SOUTH AND THINK
QUEBEC.
THERE ARE ANIMALS IN TERRIBLE
PLACES.
ELEPHANTS WHO ARE BEING CAGED.
LOOK AT THE ONE AT THE TORONTO
ZOO, POOR ELEPHANTS.
THERE'S ALWAYS RESCUE WORK TO BE DONE.

Steve says IN YOUR EXPERIENCE,
HOW INTERESTED ARE THE VARIOUS
GOVERNMENTS AROUND THE WORLD
THAT YOU DEAL WITH, HOW
INTERESTED ARE THEY IN SOLVING
THESE ANIMAL WELFARE PROBLEMS?

Dana says IF THEY ALLOW A FOREIGN GROUP
BEING FOUR PAWS INTERNATIONAL TO
COME IN AT NO EXPENSE TO THE
GOVERNMENT TO TAKE THESE ANIMALS
OUT AND TO CLOSE THE ZOOS DOWN,
THEY GET THE CREDIT FOR IT.
AND IN SOME CASES RIGHTFULLY
THEY SHOULD.

Eric says NOW CAN I ADD THAT THERE ARE
GOVERNMENTS, NORTH AMERICA OR
UNDER A LOT OF INFLUENCE FROM
THE FARM LOBBY, AND FARM LOBBY
HATES THESE KIND OF ANIMAL
PROJECTS BECAUSE IT CONSIDERS
THEM THE FINE WEDGE OF GETTING
INTO EXTEND ANIMAL PROTECTION
AND ANIMAL RIGHTS.
THERE'S NO ANIMAL PROTECTION
HERE IN ONTARIO.
ONE OF THE MOST EVOLVED AND
DEVELOPED PLACES ON EARTH, AND
YET THE EU HAS VERY STRONG LAWS.
HERE WE HAVE NOTHING, AND WE SAW
UNDER THE FORMER PRE-TRUDEAU
GOVERNMENT THAT THE GOVERNMENT'S
REPRESENTING THE INTERESTS OF
THE FARMERS WHO DON'T LIKE WHAT
WE'RE DOING.
SO WE STRUGGLE.

Steve says DO I NEED TO SAY IT,
ANIMALS DON'T VOTE.

Eric says WELL, OR CONTRIBUTE.

Steve says THERE YOU GO.

Eric says EXACTLY.

Steve says THERE YOU GO.
OKAY, ONE LAST LITTLE SNIPPY
QUESTION HERE.
THERE ARE GOING TO BE PEOPLE
WATCHING THIS WHO WILL SAY THEY
ARE USING THEIR GOOD OFFICES AND
THEIR RESOURCES TO HELP ANIMALS.
WHY NOT REAL PEOPLE?
WHAT'S THE ANSWER TO THAT?
DANA?

The caption changes to "tvo.org/theagenda; agendaconnect@tvo.org."

Dana says MY ANSWER IS THAT ONE DOES
NOT HAVE TO BE EXCLUSIVE OF THE
OTHER.
SO WE HELP ANIMALS ON A PERSONAL
LEVEL, AND WE ALSO HELP PEOPLE
ON A PERSONAL LEVEL.
I DONATE TO VARIOUS HUMANITARIAN
ORGANIZATIONS THAT I FEEL VERY
STRONGLY ABOUT SO YOU DON'T HAVE
TO CHOOSE ONE OR THE OTHER.

Steve says THERE'S LOTS OF GOOD
TO BE DONE OUT THERE.

Dana says YOU CAN CHOOSE BOTH.

Steve says GOTCHA. YOU WANT
A LAST WORD, GREAT HELMSMAN?

Eric says YES. I BELIEVE THAT ANIMALS
ARE ENDOWED WITH RIGHTS AND
SOULS, AND THEY WERE HERE.
IT'S THEIR PLANET TOO, AND WE AS
HUMANS HAVE A RIGHT TO... WE
SHOULD BE PROTECTING ANIMALS
RATHER THAN USING THEM AS SLAVES
AND HARVESTING THEM.

The caption changes to "Producer: Steve Paikin, @spaikin."

Steve says THAT IS ERIC AND DANA
MARGOLIS, WHO ON BEHALF OF THE
ERIC S. MARGOLIS FAMILY
FOUNDATION HAVE PUT THEIR GOOD
OFFICES TO WORK TO RESCUE
ANIMALS ALL OVER THE WORLD. AND
WE'RE GRATEFUL THAT YOU SPARED
SOME TIME FOR US ON TVO TONIGHT
TO TELL US ALL ABOUT YOUR WORK.

The caption changes to "Subscribe to The Agenda Podcast: tvo.org/theagenda."

Eric says THANKS FOR HAVING US.

Dana says THANK YOU.

Steve says THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

Watch: Rescuing Distressed Animals