The Law of the Jungle (review)

By Paul Robinson - 29 Sep 2014 15:34:0 GMT
The Law of the Jungle (review)

This is what we are losing, from the Andes to the Amazon. The Ecuadorian rainforest has been battled over for years, but we have to be the winners. Diversity and beauty have to be the future for these few remaining natural areas; Ecuador image; Credit: © Shutterstock

This is not a thriller, but you wouldn't know it. Paul Barrett's, "The Law of the Jungle," is a prime reader on rainforest litigation. In New York, you wouldn't expect to be trailed by people who ruined the lives of Amazonian farmers and tribesmen Ecuador had found against Texaco and for these local communities, so they were having Steven Donziger followed to detail his private life and discover any evidence of racketeering.

The story follows the crusade of Steven Donziger against Texaco and Chevron Oil who strive to stop him from exposing their operations in the Amazon. The peasants and tribespeople of Ecuador suffered decades of exploitation.

In the end, a fantastic $19 billion judgement proved the largest yet awarded. Chevron has refused to pay, and they had good reason, in law. The ruined rivers and the innocent victims seemed about to be compensated. Read the book to see what happened as Donziger himself was exposed as an operator who would stop at nothing to get his way. Ecuadorian judges and Manhattan lawyers were al implicated in devious plots to help him or stop him. Experts who were paid to give evidence and plenty of fabricated evidence all built a case against Steve Donziger. He may yet be prosecuted, but his unfortunate actions have not helped the people he set out to protect. Big oil spills are leaking from pipelines in Ecuador and the case against oil companies can't easily be built up again. Ecuadorian lawyers and many others have proved corrupt, just like Donziger.

The book is published this week. There's a video preview here if you'd like to see more background in- Law of the Jungle. Our take on the recent decisions by the Ecuadorian president, Rafael Correa is here, where the rights of the Yasuni tribe and several others are being infringed in Ecuador Dumps the Amazon's Most Biodiverse Reserve.