We have met most of the people in these stories. The Latino farmers live in our valley. I have mixed feeling about these stories. There isn't enough room to explain the complexity of the deforestation in Panama. There is a lot more going on than this thousand word article and five minute video can describe.
It is the job of the writer to distill down a topic into a coherent theme. In this case, he relied very heavily on the indigenous populations in their tribal paint and traditional clothing to be the good guys and the Latino farmers and ranchers with their horses and machetes to be the uneducated bad guys.
Avelio and his horse.
I wish I could write down all that I have seen and heard in these two years in Panama, so that I could pass on my understanding of conservation in Panama.
I don't know the best way to save the rainforest and stop desertification. I have some ideas to prevent the loss of soil fertility and decrease the need to clear more land for agriculture. I am working to pass on that information to other Peace Corps Volunteers through training sessions and writing reference materials. It is a slow process. The building up of things always is.
I hope you all read the article. Read it with a grain of salt. Know it is true and inaccurate and over simplified all at the same time.