A GANG of more than 30 animal rights extremists recently attacked anglers fishing peacefully for trout in the Lune Valley.

As with militant Islamism, this vicious attack is yet another example of how a perverted ideology is capable of inspiring people to acts of violence and intimidation, if not terror.

But could it be that the attack by these cowardly thugs on fishermen and women is in fact an act of desperation, showing weakness not strength?

For rarely does a week pass now without the news that another animal rights fanatic has been given a long jail sentence for some disgraceful offence.

So, after years of shamefully neglecting to deal with the problem of the animal rights movement, the Government appears at long last to have prioritised acting against it, and it seems to be working.

A reckless act of the kind that happened in the Lune Valley is both a PR disaster for the animal rights movement and very much a last throw of the dice for their cause.

But we can't leave dealing with these violent nutcases solely to the police. Animal rights campaigners frequently collect signatures and money for the causes they support on the streets of our city. Those who sign their petitions or donate money provide them with the means to survive.

Should these apologists for terror crawl out from under their stones and appear on a street near you, think of what you might be supporting and refrain from helping them in any way.

Peter Pike, Lancaster.