dune fences


Dune by Olli Tasso
Via Flickr:
This was shot on my recent trip to Yyteri beach (Pori, Finland). The point of the whole trip was to shoot these minimalistic compositions on a gray overcast day.

“While so attuned to the welfare of wildflowers and little foxes, Israel treated Palestinian children as less worthy, even disposable, creatures. Professionally trained sharpshooters fatally targeted them in minor stone-throwing incidences. Medical sources and human rights organizations, including Physicians for Humans Rights, have documented in the first stage of the current Palestinian intifada a pattern of targeting the eyes and knees of Palestinian children with "clear intention” to harm. The late Tel Aviv University professor Tanya Reinhart wrote, “A common practice [among sharpshooters] is shooting a rubber-coated metal bullet straight in the eye–a little game of well-trained soldiers, which requires maximum precision." 

And when there was no stone-throwing incident to hide behind, Israeli soldiers had to provoke one. The veteran American journalist Chris Hedges exposed how Israeli troops in Gaza had methodically provoked Palestinian children playing in the dunes of Southern Gaza in order to shoot them. While the kids were playing soccer, a voice would bellow out from Israeli army Jeeps: "Come on, dogs…Where are all the dogs of Khan Younis? Come! Come!… Son of a bitch!” Relating how the scheme would then unfold, Hedges writes: 

The boys–most no more than ten or eleven years old–dart in small packs up the sloping dunes to the electric fence that separates the camp from the Jewish settlement. They lob rocks toward two armored jeeps parked on top of the dune and mounted with loud-speakers… A percussion grenade explodes. The boys… scatter,running clumsily across the heavy sand. They descend out of sight behind a sandbank in front of me. There are no sounds of gunfire. The soldiers shoot with silencers. The bullets from the M-16 rifles would tumble end over end through the children’s slight bodies. Later, in the hospital, I will see the destruction: the stomachs ripped out, the gaping holes in limbs and torsos. 

Yesterday at this spot the Israelis shot eight [boys]…. Children have been shot in other conflicts I have covered… but I have never before watched soldiers entice children like mice into a trap and murder them for sport.“

– Omar Barghouti, Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions: The Global Struggle for Palestinian Rights 


The #mypubliclandsroadtrip Heads to the Sunny Alabama Shores for National Trails Day!

Today, we’re heading over to Baldwin County, Alabama, where the BLM manages seven small beach front tracts. All of these tracts are designated critical habitat for Alabama beach mouse and contain primary dunes, the preferred habitat for this species. The tracts also provide nesting habitat for loggerhead sea turtles.

In fact, these beaches are one of the few areas in the U.S. that federally-threatened Loggerhead Sea Turtles use for nesting. Actually locating a sea turtle nesting spot - momma turtles like to hide and lay eggs at night - and watching eggs hatch are rare events. Volunteers regularly patrol the beaches and watch for signs of turtle nesting.

BLM Southeastern States employees and volunteers also maintain some of the areas and trails around the beach tracts.  As a joint project, employees and volunteers defined the existing pedestrian pathway through the dunes with a unobtrusive fence. The marked path is intended to guide visitors to the beach and away from the unique habitat for wildlife.

Thanks to the volunteers whose work is critical to the conservation and recreation activities along the BLM-managed shoreline. 

An igloo village in Germany

A man kayaking way too close to a volcano

Grass after a lightning strike

A forest after getting hit by lightning

What a Liter bottle of soda looks like before compressed air is added

Lizard shed his entire face in one go

Melted glass in a fire damaged building

Path-laying machine

Algodones Sand Dunes curvy border fence in southern California