January 1, 2013

CHANGE: Kenyans take up weapons to save wildlife, tourism. “Elephants, he has come to believe, are actually worth more alive than dead, because of the tourists they attract. So Lokinyi stopped poaching and joined a grass-roots squad of rangers — essentially a conservation militia — to protect the wildlife he once slaughtered. Nowadays he gets up at dawn, slurps down a cup of sugary tea, tightens his combat boots and marches off with other villagers to fight poachers. . . . The conservation militias are often the only security forces around, so they have become de facto 911 squads, rushing off to all sorts of emergencies in areas too remote for the police to quickly gain access to and often getting into shootouts with poachers and bandits.”