Law enforcement in England is celebrating after the man one police department calls “the Animal Liberation Front’s top bomber” entered guilty pleas in court yesterday. Long-time British activist Donald Currie, first arrested in March, admitted that he set an arson fire at a house occupied by a woman and her young daughter. He also pleaded guilty to two charges of possessing explosives “with intent to endanger life.” The Animal Liberation Front publicly claimed responsibility for both crimes (see here and here). So much for the animal rights movement’s oft-heard pious boast of being fundamentally nonviolent.

The Times of London reports that Currie already had a string of previous convictions for criminal damage, assault, and other offenses. And The Sun, another London paper, adds that Currie “admitted having an arsenal of explosives he planned to use on further targets.”

It’s becoming clearer that the notion of animal rights extremists going out of their way to avoid shedding human blood is a quaint misconception — and not just a British one. In this country, Animal Liberation Front spokesperson (and long-time former Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine front-man) Dr. Jerry Vlasak has talked openly about killing people to save animals. And former People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals “National Lecturer” Gary Yourofsky has insisted that he would “unequivocally support” the murder of medical researchers during an animal-rights arson.

This latest courtroom confession should reinforce what has been apparent for years: The leading edge of today’s animal rights movement is willing to sacrifice human lives in the name of “total animal liberation.” This should come as no surprise, since the movement as a whole is perfectly happy to stop AIDS and cancer research in its tracks if it means salvation for lab rats.

All of which begs the question: If the animal rights movement is so far out of touch that it doesn’t care if we live or die, why should its leaders have any say in what we eat, what we wear, how we train our doctors, or what we do for recreation?