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If the forest is so beautiful it is because we are here

Stories and News No. 1222

Once upon a time there was a problem. A huge one to say the least. It is still there, to be honest, and has been around for a long time. Some claim it dates back more than two hundred thousand years. Others even double. So, think about it. Imagine how it has grown and spread everywhere with the passage of time, making its solution inexorably more difficult. Consider Congo, for example. Point the lens of the most reasonable part of your brain on the precious rain forest within the aforementioned African state and widen the frame, while doing the same with your curiosity. Because the topic is urgent at every latitude, no one should feel too far away. Well, do you see the village of Seh? And most importantly, can you see those people? Yes, it is just as you think. They are indigenous, despite the fact that entire generations, ignorant and superficial, have associated this term with misleading and even profitable meanings. I mean savages, uncivilized or worse. Instead, this time we follow the exact and coherent meaning, as well as respectful of the human rights: natives, born and raised there. There they remained, convinced and fond of the land and its fruits. Not necessarily for naive ignorance of the supposedly magical gifts of modern living. Because if it is true that some people are forced to leave their loved ones and homeland in order to find the future that has been stolen from them in the north of the world, others choose the life they have. And their existence coincides exactly with the place that hosts and feeds them. Now listen to the voice of one of them. His name is Josi and he officially speaks on behalf of his village, whose inhabitants belong to the Baka people, which in turn belongs to an ethnic group that you may have heard of for their particular height, namely the pygmies, but which in turn are part of a further vast and fundamental whole. It is called humanity, but usually we all tend to forget the latter fragment of the story. Josi is angry and, from his point of view, he is not entirely wrong. He says – speaking to the UN officials about the incident, that government rangers attacked him and accused his people of illegally hunting. Nonetheless, despite finding no evidence, the rangers beat up and even abused them. But the thing that adds a stir is the alleged complicity of WWF in such reprehensible incursions. At this point, let's expand the horizon of the facts a little further and let the project for the construction of a park in the Messok Dja area enter the frame. A protected area, as they say. Unspoiled. Where animals, plants and all of nature can survive far from the obtuse men’s hands. The men’s hands. What men are we talking about? Since 2007, this project has obtained funding of tens of millions of dollars from various actors, including the WWF, but also the European Union and the United States, and even companies that trade palm oil, so that we do not miss anything. Well, since the world has existed, that is for more than two hundred thousand years now, it is now well known that if the most bipedal megalomaniac on earth, with a small heart and a myopic conscience, invests efforts and money, it never comes out something good for the rest of the planet. That's why when the words of the natives rise thundering in defense of the natural riches which they are authoritative guardians of, they must be listened to with religious silence: “The forest is our home. We rely on it to live. But you people have stolen our forest. What are we going to do? How will we survive? We do not understand why you don’t come to us for our advice and our guidance about how to protect our forest. Haven’t you thought of that? If the forest is so beautiful it is because we are here.”

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