The Boys Who Loved Birds
February 21, 2015 8:54 PM   Subscribe

“In this area you should go just behind me,” the stout man says, the th of his this buzzing like a bee. Then, as if to reassure me, he adds, “I’ve been here before, with other colleagues and journalists, and no one died.” I’ve traveled here, to the former Iron Curtain, still studded with the occasional land mine, in pursuit of a love story. It’s an improbable tale about two boys, a friendship, and a passion for birds. Twenty-five years earlier, in 1989, the man in front of me had hatched a plan to transform the former no-man’s land that separated Western Europe from the Eastern Bloc into an eco-corridor running through the heart of Europe. It was a preposterous idea. The Iron Curtain had been just that—a series of steel-reinforced barriers. Electrified fences, razor wire, land mines, trip lines, and machine guns: If it could stop, maim, or kill you, the Soviets put it there. Not exactly “eco.”
posted by the man of twists and turns (6 comments total) 21 users marked this as a favorite
Great article and website. Cold War "fallout" is everywhere. Our local South Carolina example, the Savannah River Site will be a huge uninhabitable area forever.
posted by Public Corruption? at 7:16 AM on February 22, 2015 [2 favorites]

That is a fantastic article about a fantastic project. Thank you for sharing.
posted by lydhre at 7:35 AM on February 22, 2015

Terrific! I would love to visit. I will definitely be reposting this to facebook birding friend.
posted by TreeRooster at 7:58 AM on February 22, 2015

There's hope for the old planet yet!
posted by monotreme at 10:35 AM on February 22, 2015

Twitcher, Trabant, Soldier, Shrike
posted by Devonian at 2:55 PM on February 22, 2015 [3 favorites]

What a good read.
posted by a halcyon day at 7:00 PM on February 22, 2015

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