An intense international effort involving the Turkish Minister of Agriculture and Rural Affairs, the U.S. Embassy and SPCA International will allow an Iraqi donkey to relocate to the United States next month. SPCA International thanks the many donors and supporters who petitioned the Turkish authorities allow Smoke the donkey passage to the U.S. through Turkey. The animal was rescued in 2008 by Col. John Folsom and his Marines at Camp Taqaddum, brought back to good health and soon became the unit’s mascot and friend.
Thanks to the efforts of SPCA International and the U.S. Embassy working with authorities in Turkey, Smoke will become the first animal allowed official transport from Iraq into Turkey since the Iraq war began.
“We are so excited and thankful to have gained the approval needed to bring Smoke to his new loving home with John Folsom and the Wounded Warriors group,” said Stephanie Scott of SPCA International. “We worked closely with the USDA and multiple veterinarians in Iraq to ensure Smoke has all the proper immunizations, has cleared the proper tests, and is healthy and safe for travel to the United States. It has been a long journey so far and we are grateful to the many people and officials who helped make this happen so Smoke can be reunited with his Marine friends and serve an important therapy role helping veterans and their families.”
Ret. Col. John Folsom is providing a safe and loving home for Smoke in Nebraska. Folsom says he has not stopped thinking about his friend since he left Iraq and is looking forward to giving him the kind of life and home he deserves.
For daily updates on Smoke’s progress and to view the petition that helped secure Smoke’s passage, visit www.spcai.org.
what a wonderful thing to do for Smokey.
this is so great!
We worked harder to save the life of an animal than we do to save the lives of people. Very confusing.
I think this is awesome, I first read about this, this morning over on facebook.com on the MARINES page, and you would not believe all the negative feed back from people. I voiced my opinion and told them to find something else to complain about. David W. Geer, former Marine.
I am glad they saved the donkey and are giving it a good home.
The Marines rescue everyone ` Why not a donkey? This is all good to me. When you are the Best of the Best, you simply do the right thing every time. This was the right thing to do for “Smoke”.
Oh,that’s so sweet. I would have loved to hear his story. Thanks for the article!
What a great story!
that is very good news, but it is called HORSE CHANNEL.COM and last time i checked donkeys are not horses!
Oh, what a SUPER story! Thanks so much for telling us about Smoke and his military pals.
That is one lucky donkey! Thanks for the news and for not being biased against donkeys for not being horses.
What a great thing to do! People who are kind to animals are also kind to children and everyone in general. I applaud all the efforts.
i think it is beautiful god bless troops and the donkey