Analyzing new evidence gathered through interviews, archival research, and Freedom of Information Act requests, Lindsay-Poland discloses the hidden history of U.S.–Panama relations, including the human and environmental toll of the massive canal building project from 1904 to 1914. In stunning detail he describes secret chemical weapons tests—of toxins including nerve agent and Agent Orange—as well as plans developed in the 1960s to use nuclear blasts to create a second canal in Panama.
He chronicles sustained efforts by Panamanians and international environmental groups to hold the United States responsible for the disposal of the tens of thousands of explosives it left undetonated on the land it turned over to Panama in 1999. In the context of a relationship increasingly driven by the U.S. antidrug campaigns, Lindsay-Poland reports on the myriad issues that surrounded Panama’s takeover of the canal in accordance with the 1977 Panama Canal Treaty, and he assesses the future prospects for the Panamanian people, land, and canal area. Bringing to light historical legacies unknown to most U.S. citizens or even to many Panamanians, Emperors in the Jungle is a major contribution toward a new, more open relationship between Panama and the United States.
The Selva Maya (Jungle of the Maya) is one of the world's most magical yet least appreciated places—an enormous tropical forest that encompasses much of Belize, Guatemala, and Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula. At 9,000,000 acres, it is the largest contiguous tropical forest north of the Amazon in the Western Hemisphere. Within its borders, the Selva Maya provides habitat for an astonishing diversity of plants and animals—more than 500 species of birds alone. The forest also contains the fascinating ruins of ancient Maya cities, which attract visitors and researchers from all over the globe.
Jungle of the Maya presents a stunning photographic portrait of this irreplaceable natural treasure. Nature photographers Douglas Goodell and Jerry Barrack capture the living wonders of the jungle—jaguars and other cats; spider and howler monkeys; hummingbirds and butterflies; and snakes, amphibians, and insects—as well as the region's hallmark Maya sites, including Tikal, Chichen Itza, Uxmal, and Tulum. Environmental writer Jim Wright invitingly describes the Selva Maya's natural and human history, helping visitors and residents appreciate the riches to be found in the forest and the need to protect and preserve them for generations to come.
Because human activities are encroaching more and more on the Mayan forest, Jungle of the Maya is a beautiful book with a timely message. As renowned naturalist Archie Carr III sums it up in his foreword, "Today, the Selva Maya is at risk again. As modern beings, can we manage the forest better than we believe the ancient Maya did? We should. We have the archaeological record to draw from. We have modern science. And we still have inspiration whispered to us by spirits in the great plazas of Tikal and beyond. Turn the pages, and witness."
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