Inspiring Conservation in War-Torn Afghanistan

A snow leopard cub.
Virginia Gewin, writing for The Revelator, interviews author Alex Dehgan about his new book The Snow Leopard Project. DSC_5940 by kieran. CC BY-SA 2.0

Here’s another excellent story from The Revelator. This piece, written by Virginia Gewin, is about a new book called The Snow Leopard Project: And Other Adventures in Warzone Conservation by Alex Dehgan.

As The Revelator’s article explains, Dehgan worked as the Wildlife Conservation Society‘s (WCS) Afghanistan country director in 2006. Afghanistan had just endured 30 years of warfare, making it a logistically difficult place to work in – and sometimes dangerous as well.

Despite the safety risks and political challenges, Gewin writes that Dehgan described Afghanistan as, “the easiest conservation job I’ve ever had.”

What made conservation in Afghanistan so easy? The people.

The largely rural Afghan population understood, perhaps more than most, that human conservation and species conservation go hand in hand.

– Virginia Gewin, writing for The Revelator

Afghanistan’s people took pride in their local wildlife – which included rare and threatened species like Persian and snow leopards – and were enthusiastic about establishing and managing national parks. As Gewin states, “The largely rural Afghan population understood, perhaps more than most, that human conservation and species conservation go hand in hand.

The original article contains much more information. I highly recommend you check it out: it’s an easy read that will leave you feeling better about humanity.

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