World Wildlife Fund: Scapegoating Rural Peasants for the Mass Extinction Crisis

Victim of the WWF (World Wildlife Fund)

ZEMBLA (2019)

Film Review

This documentary explores the role of the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) in driving peasant farmers off their land to expand the Karziranga National Park in Assam India. A lengthy investigation has documented that WWF is arming and training park rangers to expel local peasants (without compensation) for land their families have farmed for generations.

Many are arbitrarily shot and killed (without due process) as alleged poachers. Some victims are merely tortured and released.

WWF, which has arbitrarily identified Third World overpopulation as the major cause of mass species extinction, also runs (with the support of Johnson and Johnson* and USAID**) Indian family planning and sterilization clinics. When the Dutch filmmakers attempt to interview villagers served by the WWF family planning program, they are detained and turned back by police.

The filmmakers blame “Western” (ie colonial) attitudes for WWF’s decision to scapegoat poor peasants – who play no role whatsoever in mass extinction and biodiversity loss. The true culprits are overconsumption and ideologically driven economic growth in industrialized countries.


*USAID (US Agency for International Development) is an “independent” agency of the US government closely associated with CIA and State Department regime change operations.

**Silence of the Pandas is a 2011 documentary about WWF’s close collaboration with Monsanto, palm oil manufacturers and other multinational corporations that are systematically destroying wildlife habitat. See A Classic Case of Greenwashing

An Insider’s View of the 1%

The 1%

Directed by Jamie Johnson (2006)

Film Review

The 1%, produced and directed by Johnson and Johnson heir Jamie Johnson, offers a rare insider perspective on the dangers of extreme wealth inequality for contemporary society. Johnson favors using major tax reform, ie requiring the wealthy to pay more tax, to reduce inequality.

The film devotes more or less equal emphasis to the psychological insecurities underlying greed and the sordid efforts of the 1% to corrupt democratic institutions.

It includes interviews with late conservative economist Milton Friedman, Ralph Nader, arms dealer Adnan Kashoggi (who brokered the Irangate arms for hostages deal), Robert Reich, sugar barons Alfie and Pepi Fanjul,* Chuck Collins (the Oscar Mayer heir who gave away his wealth), Bill Gates senior (who also supports higher taxes for the rich), and Nicole Buffet (her grandfather Warren Buffet cut her off from the family when she appeared in an earlier version of the 1%.

The film has some great archival footage of Katrina victims during their five day struggle, in the hurricane’s aftermath, to find food and water.

I was also struck at the major role professional financial advisors play in protecting the wealth and power of the 1%.


*Who largely owe their wealth to a quaint US law (and subsidy) that sets the wholesale price of sugar at 23 cents a pound while the rest of the world pays 7 cents.

**See A 1%er Looks at Inequality