rabble blogs are the personal pages of some of Canada's most insightful progressive activists and commentators. All opinions belong to the writer; however, writers are expected to adhere to our guidelines. We welcome new bloggers -- contact us for details.

Zimbabwe drops extradition request against U.S. dentist who shot Cecil the Lion

Please chip in to support more articles like this. Support rabble.ca for as little as $5 per month!

Zimbabwe dropped its extradition request against the U.S. dentist who shot Cecil the Lion.

The death of Cecil the Lion has not been quickly forgotten, nor has the avalanche of support the animal got upon his death and the sheer global hatred shown towards the hunter, American dentist Walter Palmer.    

What began as a trophy hunt for Cecil the Lion became a man hunt for Palmer.  

Over the Internet and news sites, Palmer became the hunted, with news trucks parked outside his temporarily shuttered dental practice and demonstrators stalking the site waiting for Palmer to return.  

Palmer instead went into hiding and hired a P.R. company to manage his newfound infamy.  

Cecil, a 13 year old male lion, was first injured by crossbow on June 31, 2015. He was then tracked, and, according to reports, approximately 40 hours later killed with a rifle.

Palmer used the Internet to boast at his latest trophy kill: this is where things backfired for Palmer.  The more the international community learned about Palmer's alleged luring of Cecil from the National Park where he lived, in Matabeleland North Province, Zimbabwe, the more forceful the condemnation.

Palmer received death threats and had his dental practice vandalized as he refused to apologize for his actions.

A petition by Care2 demanded Justice for Cecil and currently has 1,119,050 supporters from across the globe.  

An important dimension of the anger about Cecil’s death was that Palmer allegedly lured Cecil from his Hwange National Park in Matabeleland North Province, Zimbabwe where we was assumed safe and much loved by the crowds due to his distinctively black mane.

However, Zimbabwe is no longer pressing for the extradition of Palmer back to face charges. The reason why is yet unknown.  

In fact, reports indicate that Palmer can now safely return to Zimbabwe as a tourist because he had not broken the country’s hunting laws.  Minister of Environment, Water and Climate, Oppah Muchinguri-Kashiri, told reporters in Harare on Monday, October 12, 2015, that Zimbabwe’s police and the National Prosecuting Authority had cleared Palmer of wrongdoing.

Meanwhile still in hot water is Theo Bronkhorst, the Zimbabwean professional hunter who was a guide for Palmer.

Bronkhorst returned to court last week on charges of allowing an illegal hunt. His lawyer Perpetua Dube argued that the charges are too vague and should be dropped.

It’s still never too late to sign the petition to demand real justice for Cecil here.


Thank you for reading this story…

More people are reading rabble.ca than ever and unlike many news organizations, we have never put up a paywall – at rabble we’ve always believed in making our reporting and analysis free to all, while striving to make it sustainable as well. Media isn’t free to produce. rabble’s total budget is likely less than what big corporate media spend on photocopying (we kid you not!) and we do not have any major foundation, sponsor or angel investor. Our main supporters are people and organizations -- like you. This is why we need your help. You are what keep us sustainable.

rabble.ca has staked its existence on you. We live or die on community support -- your support! We get hundreds of thousands of visitors and we believe in them. We believe in you. We believe people will put in what they can for the greater good. We call that sustainable.

So what is the easy answer for us? Depend on a community of visitors who care passionately about media that amplifies the voices of people struggling for change and justice. It really is that simple. When the people who visit rabble care enough to contribute a bit then it works for everyone.

And so we’re asking you if you could make a donation, right now, to help us carry forward on our mission. Make a donation today.


We welcome your comments! rabble.ca embraces a pro-human rights, pro-feminist, anti-racist, queer-positive, anti-imperialist and pro-labour stance, and encourages discussions which develop progressive thought. Our full comment policy can be found here. Learn more about Disqus on rabble.ca and your privacy here. Please keep in mind:


  • Tell the truth and avoid rumours.
  • Add context and background.
  • Report typos and logical fallacies.
  • Be respectful.
  • Respect copyright - link to articles.
  • Stay focused. Bring in-depth commentary to our discussion forum, babble.


  • Use oppressive/offensive language.
  • Libel or defame.
  • Bully or troll.
  • Post spam.
  • Engage trolls. Flag suspect activity instead.