King of Spain Gets It Bad for Hunting Elephants.

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(Tumblr / King Juan Carlos of Spain during one of his previous hunting trips to Botswana with Rann Safaris)

King Juan Carlos of Spain underwent a hip replacement surgery this morning after suffering a fall, while hunting elephants in Botswana.

At a time when his country is going through a severe economical crisis as well as experiencing the highest unemployment rates in history (especially among the young population), the king travels to African countries to engage in expensive and unethical activities that are costing him the trust of his people (and their Euros).

But it seems like the gun is turning against Don Juan Carlos this time. Along with his new hip, he’s also getting thousands of signatures from outraged citizens asking him to give up his Honorary Presidency of World Wildlife Fund Spain, title which he ironically holds. No, that wasn’t a typo. 


Murdering animals for pleasure is not a new hobby to Don Juan Carlos. The 74-year old monarch has 50 years of experience (almost his entire adult life) hunting elephants, bears, wolves, leopards… you name it. According to The Guardian, he paid 7.000 Euros in 2004 to shoot a European bison —one of the world’s most endangered species (approximately 1.600 left)— during a trip to Poland.

And the rest of his hunting deeds could easily fill up a second or third memoir. I’d suggest “How to Rule the Wilderness in Two Easy Steps” as a title.

Step 1: Buy it.

Step 2: Kill it.

Rann Safaris, the king’s hunting ally in Botswana, has deactivated today both its website and the Facebook page, where several photographs of the king’s hunting adventure with the company had previously been posted.

But the shocking video of their bloody trails is still spreading around the internet, like a dark shadow of what man—with money, a gun and no compassion—can do to nature, animals and, ultimately, to himself.

I’m not optimistic about fighting these giants and winning. But at least we can let the world know that we’re trying. Share this and help spread the message. Information is, perhaps, our most mindful weapon. 

As Elie Weisel put it,

“I swore never to be silent whenever and wherever human beings [and other creatures] endure suffering and humiliation. We must always take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented.”




The Telegraph

Animal Equality Spain

El País

Daily Mail


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anonymous Jan 27, 2013 11:28am

[…] “King of Spain Gets It Bad for Hunting Elephants,” Elephant […]

anonymous Jan 27, 2013 11:07am

[…] “King of Spain Gets It Bad for Hunting Elephants,” Elephant […]

anonymous Aug 5, 2012 2:05am

As a big game hunter myself, I understand the attraction to hunting. However, I am strictly against hunting elephants or any other creature that is intelligent enough to mourn its dead. This effect on the animals society is something I personally could not live with. However, there are certainly animals ( deer, some antelope, etc.) that should be hunted in order to prevent overpopulation. So I am definitely against hunting anything intelligent, but I would hardly consider the hunting of unintelligent creatures bad. Especially when you consider the economic benefits of doing do.

anonymous Apr 26, 2012 6:39am

Uhhm..Oh hey there, simply became alert to your blog via Google, and located that it’s truly informative. Thank you and best of luck.

anonymous Apr 24, 2012 1:43pm

[…] it is ‘royalty’ shooting at wildlife for fun, the Chinese suppressing the Tibetan monks or the senseless killing of troops and civilians in […]

anonymous Apr 20, 2012 6:42am

Via FB:

Richard Phares ~ I am a biologist and I think this guy should be put in prison for crimes against both, humankind and the animal kingdom. I propose something, why don't we strip him down, throw him in the woods, let him run and to the count of 10 start chasing him and shooting him down. That way he would understand the suffering the poor and defenseless animals have undergone thanks to him and to all those who approve that abuse and atrocity. If I am not wrong, I believe elephants, buffalos and most of animal species are protected under international laws and whoever violates those laws must be prosecuted and duly convicted.

This retarded member of a well-known family of retards (the bourbons) should be arrested and, along with his large parasitic "royal" family, deprived from all their riches and privileges once and for all. Stupidity reflects in his face in all of his photographs. This reminds me of another old parasite named Franco. Along his 40 years of dictatorship, he used to go hunting on a private forest preserve in Galizia; only he was a little more "humble" and did not use that much the Spanish taxpayer's money. We are still in the dark ages of human history. Still in the Middle Ages, when a few group of "nobles" had all the riches, power and privileges over a majority of poor and stupid people that never dared to end up with this system. Nothing has changed ever since. The system is still the same only with different names: a king is now a full government of parasitic politicians and technocrats, the king's private army is now the Armed Forces, the police and all kinds of repressive forces.

Even as we speak there are numerous countries that still have a king, prince or any kind of nobility dictating and doing whatever they please. I hope that some day there will be more like you and I and this oppression will come to and end for good.

anonymous Apr 19, 2012 8:30am

As a true wildlife lover in Africa, I really again are amazed and sad that animals are killed by hunters in Africa on a large unprecedented scale. Why, why, why? After the Trump brothers incident, now we have the King of Spain incident. Rich people are the ones that think they have the right to kill the last remaining wildlife. Yes, they say: It is for the benefit of the local people and to keep numbers of animals in balance. I know lots of examples that proof this is not true.
Maybe this 'royal' incident can open up the discussion again about hunting…. To all hunters I would like to say: Be very sure that your activities are for the benefit of people and animals. Be a hunter if you like, but not a killer.
For those who have not a 'cloo' about hunting: There are numerous internet sites about hunting and even more YouTube clips.

Read more:

    anonymous Apr 20, 2012 6:39am

    Agree. Hunting is an ancient game. But hunting doesn't have to be murdering endangered species in cold blood. I see this similar to eating animals.You can eat all the animals you want, I won't question the rights or morality behind it. But don't torture them in factory farms. Whether eating or hunting them can be debatable, torturing them and murdering for pleasure and money is clearly inhumane, to say the least.

anonymous Apr 18, 2012 11:23am

Let’s not forget ( Martin Fuller will excuse me heer) that Margaret Mead, the renowned philosopher and anthropologist, once said: ” don’t think that a small bunch of people repeating the same thing over and over again won’t change anything.They will. It’s that sort of thing that changes the world.” She’s right!. Let’s start canvassing opínion for the abdication of Juan Carlos as well as his expulsion from WWL . Write to newspapers, write to AAVAZ INTERNATIONAL petitions, write to Juan Carlos himself. Get him out of office. He is an excretion( excrement…perhaps?)of the hangers-on who only are where they are because of Franco, the Iberian fascist icon with so many deaths to his credit. Juan Carlos is ugly, unnattractive, unethical and cruel; he uses rude language and has no sense of public behaviour. Who need him? Monarchs, such a crude,ridiculously out-of-place model of state, can only be justified, if barely,by an unswerving and fully visible sense of duty . Juan Carlos is nothing of the kind. Out with him! Death penalty to this kind of people. Blood sports are the devil’s own concourse.

    anonymous Apr 19, 2012 5:36pm

    I agree with most of what you're saying Mario (except the death penalty, which I'm not in favor of, whatever the damage – but that's a different story). Monarchy is an expensive, unnecessary and archaic model and I hope it'll go down soon enough. Most Europeans are, in fact, against it, especially since the crisis started. In a continent (and by that I mean specifically the EU) that's almost falling apart, monarchy is the roof of a house already in ruins. We do need more international noise. In fact, a petition has already been signed by thousands, right after the "accident", a few days ago, asking him to at least give up his WWF title and stop the "bloody" joke.

anonymous Apr 16, 2012 12:27pm

Me cago en tu madre marircon ,mete la escopeta en el culo a ver si te entretienes mas viejo e pinga ,usa tu dinero en otra cosa no cazando elefantes ,o tama biagra pa que se te pare pa que puedas foyar ,o si no dile al de la foto que te la meta estupido

anonymous Apr 16, 2012 7:07am

Have quoted this in my article: "Spanish King: Haunting Mythical Hunting Memories"

PS may I suggest that you allow the direct linking to specific articles; now one can not make a references to your articles as you get a page that throws away the specific link and proposes payments first. That is not a very elegant meyhod and also counter productive. Keep the good work for the rest.

    anonymous Apr 19, 2012 6:08pm

    Thanks Tjebbe, I checked your link. I'll also look into the linking problem you mention.

    *Wait, I see it's linked (scroll up at the top of the comments).

anonymous Apr 16, 2012 6:51am

[…] […]

anonymous Apr 16, 2012 6:45am

I posted this to the elephant green Facebook page. and @mindfulgreen on Twitter.
Thanks for sharing!
Jill Barth, Green Editor
Join us! Like elephant green on Facebook.
Follow on @mindfulgreen on Twitter.

anonymous Apr 16, 2012 3:37am

Perhaps you could raise a few million dollars to ship some of the excess elephants from Botswana to Kenya where hunting has been banned for decades. Strange thing is that their elephant (and other game numbers) have steadily declined since the ban on hunting! You see, where legitimate hunting is allowed their is an incentive to protect the population as a whole and take off just the excess animals (those that would have moved out of the area if there were no fences or those that are beyond breeding age or those that would have died of natural causes). This includes fighting poaching, protecting the environment and the other animals that exists there. Your emotions are clouding your ability to think clearly. I sit back and await the emotional drivel that will be posted in response. Get well soon King and may you have many more successful trips to hunt elephants. I like elephants too but they do not deserve to be given protection at the expense of other living creatures.

    anonymous Apr 19, 2012 6:06pm

    Are you sure you're not projecting your own emotion here? Because so far your argument lacks everything but any real economical or political base, which, last time I checked (Wikipedia, no need to be too smart) is what reinforces the law – especially in Africa and especially in countries like Botswana.

    You must be one of the few people in the world right now (and the only commenter here) who's bowing to the King for this. Maybe you should read the whole piece before you vent (it's pretty short) as well as google "king of spain hunting history" to get a wider and more international perspective of what this man is doing to more than just elephants over the past 50 years (on his people's tax money – or whatever extra undeserved millions he gets paid for wearing that crown).

    Maybe instead of us raising those two million dollars, you should ask "your" King to stop paying to shoot them and photograph them like a trophy and use the money instead to keep Botswana's population safe. But then there'd be no business for Rann Safaris and whoever's behind it (god only knows who the real bosses are). And see, that's the real tragedy, not killing wildlife – 'cause it's just life after all, it's got to die sometime or another. But money, yea, money lives on.

anonymous Apr 16, 2012 3:36am

Anyone been to Botswana lately? Anyone seen how much destruction the overpopulation of elephants in that coutry has caused? Anyone worried about some of the less charismatic creatures that have died out because the habitat they used to live in has been changed by the elephants through their destructive feeding habits? I so hope the King got to shoot a few elephants before his unfortunate accident. The number of elephants in Botswana need to be DRASTICALLY reduced in order to protect the soil (being washed away where elephants have overutilised the plants), the plants themselves and other animals. Hunting of excess elephants is a legitimate way of cotrolling their numbers. There is not ENOUGH of it allowed in Botswana.

    anonymous Apr 19, 2012 5:53pm

    So the key to death & devastation is to "kill it" with more death & devastation"? That's smart. Shooting baby elephants in the head is a "legitimate way" to bring abundance to Botswana? Wake up Dimitri and do your homework. Africa is bought & sold daily by politicians – not by elephants. Murdering endangered species in cold blood is not (it will never be) a solution or what's going to bring Botswana peace & prosperity. Though it apparently makes for a bloody lullaby the King of Spain sings himself to sleep with. And those who, like you, buy into Rann Safair's (& Co) ridiculous justification for cold-hearted cruelty.

      anonymous Apr 23, 2014 9:00am

      I know it's been sometime since we've all posted these comments ( and mine were posted on the heat of the moment ) but I have to say that statements like Dimitri's depresses me beyond measure . I think that Andréa is absolutely right ( it surprises me that anyone should think otherwise) and her comment speaks for itself. If Dimitri believes that the answer to the alleged ' death and devastation' in Botswana is killing more elephants , then he, too, sticks out like a sore thumb vis-à-vis the international community. What happens if someone in Botswana suddenly decides that the country is becoming overpopulated and some populations ( say the old, the retired or whatever) shound be shot to death? Sounds absurd? Well , that is pretty much what happened in Russia when Stalin thought they had too many mouths to feed and millions of people were left to starve and die and, though admittedly not shot dead in cold blood like Jews were by Hitler, their death were the ultimate objective and therefore monstruous. Killing is basically immoral ( though I said in my earlier statement, again in the heat of the argument, that sometimes the Death Penalty can seem the only solution, I obviously don't think that , and live in a country where it has been banned for nearly a century and hasn't been used for more than that … though I must admit that when you see someone as well fed and educated as King Juan Carlos – who should know better and therefore carries RESPONSABILITY – behaving worse than so-called savages ,,one wonders if the idea of Capital Punishment couldn't be toyed with as a means of redressing the balance and making of His most murderous Spanish Magesty an examplary execution for all to see and reflect upon : after all , animals are beings , not things , and if we preserve architecture , paintings , historical objects and the like – which are things – how can we shoot animals which cannot fight back? ) and I must say again: killing is basically imoral and when we human beings – who know better – set out to kill innocent creatures wantonly , we have a problem !. Ours is not to tell what people should do with their lives nor how they should behave in their private spheres of activity , but when the collective good is at stake , then inaction becomes conivance and doing nothing becomes a crimne against Humanity. Animals are incarnate spirits and, , in their compound ways of communicating with Humans, are part of Humanity. …and Humanity is beautiful, even if often populated by scum-types like King Juan Carlos, game hunters and the like. Organised society is the stuff of State and statehood endeavours to be seen as civilisation at work. I have little acquaitance with Botswana, but insofar as it iis part of the Human Race and constitutes a sovereign ( relatively democratic) state within the UN , Botswana should be able to get ist act together and administrate the problems which allegedly beset its development and well-being without distorting the perspective of sustainable behaviour. Is Botswana after all an inferior nation? Is it na underdeveloped country where everything goes?

anonymous Apr 15, 2012 2:57pm

Via readers for animal rights on FB:

Eduardo Maceda cínico
22 hours ago · Like

Nomi Lyonns Holy [email protected]!! He's the WWF honorary prez!!? Topple him! Maybe David Attenborough should get the title.
12 hours ago · Like

Linda Ann Herring Knowles Perhaps he should be made to resign from his post as President of WWF.;Then have him Baker acted and place in an assisted living facility,where he can't do any more damage.PS. Place him in a unit where all abhor hunting. Wh will have the last laugh?
8 hours ago · Like

Sils de la Selva
7 hours ago · Like

anonymous Apr 15, 2012 8:10am

* Edited to add Elie Weisel quote at the end.

anonymous Apr 15, 2012 8:00am


Judith Baber What a self centered obnoxious man!
3 hours ago · Unlike · 1

Carol Anne Knapp this is the problem with never seeing reality as an elite..gotta get rid of the class devide.
2 hours ago · Unlike · 1

Linda Ann Herring Knowles Just doing it for the hunt and the Kill.Perhaps his trophy set on the wall. He hasn't done it for money,or the tusks.Sick geriatric man,not keeping up with world problems,and sure he doesn't care.
2 hours ago · Unlike · 1

Sils de la Selva
45 minutes ago · Unlike · 1

Gema Moreno Kearns Thanks for sharing the info! All my family are from and live in Spain and I am so DISGUSTED now w/ the King of Spain! I never knew this about him =(. Elephants are one of the most beautiful, smart, amazing animals on the planet and how dare anyone hunt them down esp a Royal that should be setting an example and protecting them!! Bad boy is not even the word…hope his hip hurts for along time ;)!!
5 hours ago · Unlike · 2

Kelly White Watch out mister!! I know how to shoot too, you disgusting thing!
5 hours ago · Like · 1

anonymous Apr 15, 2012 7:59am

More via FB

Jerome Burdi ‎"Each outcry of the hunted hare
A fibre from the brain does tear.
A skylark wounded in the wing,
A cherubim does cease to sing." -W. Blake
11 hours ago · Unlike · 2

Martin Murphy I think perhaps the anger would be better spent on transforming our own lives. I think that the display of our 'self rightous' angeris all that happens. Emotion is a fuel for action, to either change others or ourselves.
7 hours ago · Like · 1

Martin Murphy Changing The World
When I was a young man, I wanted to change the world. I found it was difficult to change the world, so I tried to change my nation. When I found I couldn’t change the nation, I began to focus on my town. I couldn’t change the town and as an older man, I tried to change my family.

Now, as an old man, I realize the only thing I can change is myself, and suddenly I realize that if long ago I had changed myself, I could have made an impact on my family. My family and I could have made an impact on our town. Their impact could have changed the nation and I could indeed have changed the world.
-unknown monk 1100A.D
7 hours ago · Unlike · 3

Andréa Balt Agreed Martin, love the story. My doubt in this case is, where is the reaction against injustice supposed to go? I don't think we should spend our life being angry, but when something atrocious is being done to nature and, ultimately to ourselves, is there a place for a constructive reaction – if merely for the purpose of spreading awareness and cutting it short? Methinks so. But of course, the line between "constructive & destructive" is a fine one, and usually missed even by most well-intended activists.
2 hours ago · Like

Martin Murphy I think it is interesting that the WWF is involved in this. You see you cannot solve a challenge from within the same system that it originated from. So things like the WWF and all those other well meaning orgs like FOE, do exactly what orgs involved in the present systems do. They mix up the end values with the means values.
2 hours ago · Like

Martin Murphy What I mean by this is that the outrage and reaction, whilst justified never seems to do anything. The money thrown at problems and into the WWF never actually solves anything fundamentally.
2 hours ago · Like

Martin Murphy Otherwise these challenges would have been solved by now
2 hours ago · Like

Martin Murphy man made it to the moon becuase a group of people were focussed solely on getting there, they didnt complain at gravity, they made gravity obselte in a way
2 hours ago · Like

Martin Murphy and so as Buckminster Fuller said, You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change
something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.
2 hours ago · Like

Martin Murphy I think emotion is healthy and very valuable…But it must be harnessed to be a force of change from within. Everywant wants to be enlightened, but nobody wants to do the hard work of changing themselves,
2 hours ago · Like

Martin Murphy There is always balance in the Universe, your outrage at the Prince, is a denied aspect of ourselves…
2 hours ago · Like

Martin Murphy it's us that needs to change…..
2 hours ago · Like

Martin Murphy perhaps..?:)
2 hours ago · Like

Andréa Balt No doubt that we all need to change. I think we're talking about two different things, none of which cancels each other out, both of which are necessary for constructive action. One thing is noticing an evil & spreading the word about it and an entire different thing is feeding & dwelling on it. (Did I get too emotional & personal about it? Sure, maybe because it hit a more sensitive nerve than other issues. But as a rule, I'm an emotional & personal creature). There are children being raped, slaves being traded, elephants being hunted, people being robbed, 100-year old trees being cut down as we speak. Elie Weisel said, "I swore never to be silent whenever and wherever human beings endure suffering and humiliation. We must always take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented." I don't want to fight against gravity, but in order for me to build a ship strong enough to defy it, I must notice it first, right? And humans don't usually notice they can't fly until they jump off the roof and hurt themselves. (I believe this is what I'm doing here, not dwelling on the fall of the prince, but spreading news with my short personal side note of disgust which, though not necessary, I don't see why I shouldn't include).
2 hours ago · Like · 4

Christopher L. Janney well said… thank you.
2 hours ago · Like · 1

anonymous Apr 14, 2012 6:55pm

Via Facebook:

CJ Vapenik
I wonder if he is going to justify it like Donald Trump's Son did…
2 hours ago · Unlike · 1

Andréa Balt Yes, let's see how it turns out. I also linked to the Donald Trump article posted on elephant. Sick!
2 hours ago · Like

Claudia Johnson no words. just sadness.
about an hour ago · Unlike · 1

Michael Slevens I dont know maybe its just me, but how is hunting something that big and slow even hunting? It would be like sneaking up on a building and setting it on fire. No sport in that! Now if he had killed it with his bare hands, blind folded and say wearing just one shoe while standing on broken glass, ok maybe…
about an hour ago · Unlike · 1

Claudia Johnson ‎^^^ seriously. (insert small penis comment here).
about an hour ago · Unlike · 2

Andréa Balt I hear you, Michael Slevens. What gets to me is the cowardice and the sickness of it, not essentially the act of killing an animal per se. Although I wouldn't do the second either, it can at least be argued. This above is just pure insanity, how does one react to it? It's sad to see how much life money can buy. (And if you watched the video I linked to, you'll get even more frustrated. They actually try to justify it.)
57 minutes ago · Like

Claudia Johnson it's crazy weird but i had a dream about this guy over a week ago. i know absolutely nothing spanish politic. anyway, i dreamt he was cruel to animals. i saw him cooking baby penguins alive in frying pans. not sure why i am sharing. just weird considering i knew nothing about this "king" until today.
53 minutes ago · Unlike · 1

Martin Murphy This kind of thing is going on in every level of society and quarter of the world, just the very same reason that action to create a better world based on compassionate values and away from ego. No point complaining about it, make a new world which makes this one obselete … Jus sayin 🙂
52 minutes ago · Like

Claudia Johnson i agree with what you are saying martin but i think people need to express how they feel as well. it's healthy and i believe necessary. we can't go around pretending we are not angry.
48 minutes ago · Unlike · 1

Andréa Balt Both points taken, I'm still emailing the king tonight to demand an explanation. I'm sure he'll be quick to reply.

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Andrea Balt

Co-Founder / Editor in Chief of Rebelle Society, Wellness Alchemist at Rebelle Wellness & Creativity Curator at Creative Rehab. Unfinished book with a love for greens, bikes and poetry; raised by wolves & adopted by people; not trying to make art but to Be Art. Holds a BA in Journalism & Mass Communication, an MFA in Creative Writing & a Holistic Health Coach degree from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition®. In her work she tries to reflect the wholeness of the human experience by combining Art & Health + Brains & Beauty + Darkness & Brilliance into a more alive, unabridged and unlimited edition of ourselves. She is also on a quest to reinstate Creativity as one of our essential Human Rights to (hopefully and soon) be included in the UN Declaration. Connect with her on Facebook, Twitter & Instagram and sign up for her Monthly Stroke of Renaissance.