Articles by: William deBuys

by Gila National Forest – New Mexico is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0 / Flickr

New Mexico’s Megafires Mark a Turning Point

Firefighters don’t normally allude to early English epics, but in a briefing on the massive Hermits Peak/Calf Canyon Fire in northern New Mexico, a top field chief said, “It’s like Beowulf: it’s not the thing you fear, it is the mother of the thing you fear.” He meant that the flames you face may be terrifying, but scarier yet are the conditions[Read More…]

by 22/07/2022 Comments are Disabled Climate Change
Climate Change Viewed from the Attic of the World

Climate Change Viewed from the Attic of the World

Thirteen thousand feet high on the far side of the Himalaya mountains, we have entered the past and the future at the same time. We are a medical expedition and also a pilgrimage, consisting of doctors, nurses, Buddhist clerics, supernumeraries like me, and a large staff of guides, muleteers, and camp tenders. We are bound for the isolated villages of[Read More…]

by 19/10/2021 Comments are Disabled Climate Change
United States border fence, US/Mexico border, east of Nogales, Arizona, USA, viewed from US side

 The Humanitarian and Environmental Disaster of Trump’s Border Wall

A new Wild West has taken root not far from Tombstone, Arizona, known to many for its faux-historical reenactments of the old West. We’re talking about a long, skinny territory — a geographic gerrymander — that stretches east across New Mexico and down the Texan Rio Grande to the Gulf of Mexico. It also runs west across hundreds of miles[Read More…]

by 17/01/2020 Comments are Disabled World
12 Ways to Make Sense of the Border Mess

12 Ways to Make Sense of the Border Mess

  Borders are cruel. I know this because I’ve been studying the U.S.-Mexico border for more than 40 years. It features prominently in two of my books, written in different decades. It keeps pulling me back. Every time I cross that border, I say to myself that this is no big deal — I’m used to it. And every time, I feel that[Read More…]

by 25/03/2019 Comments are Disabled World