Strangely Like War: The Global Assault on Forests (Politics of the Living)

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9781931498456: Strangely Like War: The Global Assault on Forests (Politics of the Living)

"It was strangely like war. They attacked the forest as if it were an enemy to be pushed back from the beachheads, driven into the hills, broken into patches, and wiped out. Many operators thought they were not only making lumber but liberating the land from the trees. . ." from The Last Wilderness, by Murray Morgan, 1976

Derrick Jensen, prize-winning author of A Language Older than Words and The Culture of Make Believe, and George Draffan, activist, researcher, and co-author with Jensen of Railroads & Clearcuts, collaborate again to expose the escalating global war on trees. Ever since Gilgamesh cut down the ancient cedar forests of Mesopotamia, civilizations and empires have foundered and collapsed in the wake of widespread deforestation. Today, with three quarters of the world’s original forests gone and the pace of cutting, clearing, processing, and pulping ever accelerating, Jensen and Draffan lay bare the stark scenario we face—we being not only people, but the nonhuman fabric of life itself—unless deforestation is slowed and stopped. A must-read for anyone who wants to understand the relationship between deforestation and our ecological crisis as well as an essential "handbook" for forest and anti-globalization activists.

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About the Author:

Derrick Jensen is the author of The Culture of Make Believe; A Language Older than Words; Listening to the Land: Conversations about Nature, Culture, and Eros; and co-author of Railroads & Clearcuts. The Culture of Make Believe was one of two finalists for the 2003 J. Anthony Lukas Book Prize. He writes for The New York Times Magazine, Audubon, and The Sun among many others.

George Draffan is a forest activist, public interest investigator, and corporate muckraker. He is the author of The Elite Consensus, A Primer on Corporate Power, and co-author of Railroads & Clearcuts. For the past fifteen years he has provided research services and training to citizens and public interest groups that are investigating and challenging corporate power. Some of his work can be found at Endgame, a project of the Public Information Network.

From Publishers Weekly:

Jensen (The Culture of Make Believe) and Draffan (A Primer on Corporate Power) are both pessimistic and angry about the state of the world's forests. In the U.S. only five percent of native forest remains; forests on a global level are also under attack, with one estimate claiming that two and a half acres are cut every second. International deforestation causes the extinction of plants and animals in addition to driving human forest dwellers, like the Karen of Burma, the Mapuche of Chile and the Penan of Malaysia, from their homelands. The destruction of forests also results in flooding, erosion and landslides. Production of paper products releases highly toxic chemicals into both the air and water. The authors provide many instances of collusion between industry and government, which has led to a U.S. commercial timber and logging industry permitted to destroy forests almost without restriction. Environmental agencies such as the Sierra Club or the Environmental Defense Fund, according to Jensen and Draffan, are more interested in raising money than in raising discomfort among the economically powerful. Globalization, they argue, is a network of financial, legal and political structures that operate for the benefit of the economic elite, allowing those in power to consume the natural resources of other nations. Although the text is occasionally overwrought, the authors have carefully documented worldwide deforestation, as well as the serious environmental and human consequences, and point a finger at those responsible.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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