|Killing the Most Beautiful Things We Own: The Eleventh Newsletter (2019).
Greetings from the desk of the Tricontinental: Institute for Social Research.
Nazim Hikmet, the Turkish Communist poet, conjured up the image of a lonely sentry in a camp of fighters in the Spanish Civil War. This volunteer is startled by the horridness of the war and wants to hold dearly to the sensitive values of solidarity and hope.
It is snowing in the night.
You stand in front of the door of Madrid.
In front of you is an army.
Killing the most beautiful things we own,
Hope, yearning, freedom and children.
Hikmet wrote this poem in 1937. The hopes of a generation of the left were laid at the feet of people like this sentry. ‘Everything my nostalgic soul hopes for smiles in the eyes of the sentry at the door of Madrid’, he sang. But then, the forces of hatred and hopelessness seized Spain. Everything seemed to end. We killed the most beautiful things in the world.
From our team in São Paulo, Brazil, comes an informative and heartfelt dossier on the destruction of the Amazon. The Amazon Rain Forest is one of the most beautiful places on the planet. Diverse in every way, the Amazon is home to a fifth of the planet’s fresh water and its rich trees absorbs an incredible amount of the world’s carbon emissions. 170 different indigenous communities make their homes in the rain forest.