The New Yorker Magazine published a sobering piece on the state of poaching of forest elephants in Central Africa. Many people from all over Central Africa and the world continue to seek solutions to curbing what has increasingly become a sophisticated, criminal, organized murder and trafficking enterprise of decimating elephants for the ivory trade. Elephant and human lives, as well as the complex link between elephants and forest ecology (including interdependent plant and animal species, many of which are vital to humans – not to speak of the local and global climate!), are too precious for these atrocities to continue. I did not delve into this tangled web of corruption and illegal poaching in Glimpses through the Forest, although I attempted to convey the majesty of these incredible pachyderms. Perhaps that is part of the solution though, to continue educating and highlighting the beauty of these beasts, and the interconnection they play for us, as people, with the forest. Still, as the New Yorker points out, there is a growing need for law enforcement, vigilance, and punishment against those creating so much devastation, as well as economic development and empowerment for communities living in Central Africa.
On May 8, 2013, the labor of love and hard work that I titled Glimpses through the Forest: Memories of Gabon was published by Peace Corps Writers. I’m so grateful to everyone who has taken an interest and read about Gabon, its amazing people, and the outstanding landscapes and biodiversity of Central Africa. Hoping others continue to do so too 🙂