Publications

The world's largest land carnivore is officially classified as a marine mammal. But it can only survive on the sea ice of the Arctic. This is its story.
The inside story of the campaign against commercial whaling, as told by the leader of four Greenpeace voyages to confront the Antarctic whaling fleet.
The story of how the Arctic and Antarctic have influenced, and in turn been affected by, human history.
A photographic history of Greenpeace, with introductory text by me, and a foreword by the Dalai Lama.

North Pole

September 19, 2017

Last month, I was able to join my friends and colleagues Krista Wright and Geoff York of Polar Bears International on board the nuclear-powered icebreaker 50 Years of Victory to the North Pole.

It was, as one might imagine, a singularly unique experience. I wasn't quite sure what to expect: I've been to the Arctic plenty of times, of course, and I've been on board icebreakers that have crunched their way through sea ice. But I had never been on a ship as a passenger before, let alone among a large number of paying passengers, which was the case here: for much of the year, Victory breaks pathways through the thick ice of the Northeast Passage, but during the summer, it is chartered by adventure tour companies - in this case, Quark Expeditions - to go to the North Pole.

I wrote about the voyage here - unfortunately, truth be told, the editorial process surrounding that blog post was fairly awful. (See that correction at the bottom? It's wrong. Not coincidentally, I'm now looking for a new gig.) Fortunately, I am hopeful to get another bite of the apple with a real outlet, the Washington Post Magazine, and I will also post some blogs that I'll be writing for PBI. Meanwihile, I also got the chance to return to "Watching the Hawks" on RT America, and talk - albeit remotely - with the always-excellent Tyler Ventura and Tabetha Wallace.

Deny, Deny, Deny

June 23, 2017



There's so much that is telling about this exchange between Energy Secretary Rick Perry and U.S. Senator Al Franken of Minnesota over the subject of climate change. Perry had, earlier, in the week, stated that he did not believe carbon dioxide is the primary factor in the warming climate, attributing it instead to "the warming of the oceans." Franken calmly dissected Perry's assorted points and claims until at the end, Perry simply couldn't hide the fact that, rather than being a skeptic as he asserted, he is a flat-out climate change denier.

When Franken posits that human activities are solely behind rising global temperatures, Perry states his outright refusal to believe it. It isn't because he takes issue with any of the scientific evidence or with the laws of physics; it's that he is unable to comprehend and unwilling to accept that such a thing could be the case. It's an excellent example of what the likes of Katharine Hayhoe have pointed out; that as much as we might like to repeat facts until we are blue in the face, facts alone simply will not budge deniers when they so utterly threaten their worldview.

The Krusher Gets Krushed

June 23, 2017

David Spagnolo, the photographer for boxing promotional company Main Events, caught this great image of light heavyweight boxer Sergey Kovalev and I enjoying a light-hearted moment during a livestream prior to Kovalev's bout with Andre Ward last weekend. Part of me blushes at it a little; the really good interviewers shouldn't allow themselves to get caught up in the jokes of a specific participant. But I let the mask slip here; although he's a divisive character, I enjoy Sergey. I have probably interviewed him and Gennady Golovkin more than any other boxers for HBO. It was to cover a Kovalev fight that HBO sent me to Russia last year. At this particular moment, he was cracking a joke about "shooting" Ward in the ring (he was partly trained by a biathlon coach), and just previously he had openly laughed when I told him that Ward's trainer Virgil Hunter said he had trained Ward to knock Kovalev off. But boxing has a great way of humbling you and making you look foolish, particularly if you are not 100% prepared, and that's just what happened last Saturday night. Although there was some controversy about the fight and the moment of the stoppage, centered around some low blows landed by Ward, the American did indeed knock out the Russian, hurting him badly with a booming right hand in the eighth round, and then launching an all-out assault until referee Tony Weeks stopped the contest.

Petulance and the Presidency

May 13, 2017

The recent firing by Donald Trump of FBI Director James Comey evokes the Saturday Night Massacre of Watergate; and Trump's admission that, “When I decided to just do it, I said to myself, I said: ‘You know, this Russia thing with Trump and Russia is a made-up story, it’s an excuse by the Democrats for having lost an election that they should’ve won’” has prompted speculation that the agency's investigation into possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Moscow was finding fire amid the smoke.

Democratic senator Dick Durbin of Illinois said: “I think the Comey operation was breathing down the neck of the Trump campaign and their operatives, and this was an effort to slow down the investigation.”

Adam Schiff, the top Democrat on the House intelligence committee, added: “If there was no ‘there there’, James Comey would still have a job.”

I'm not so sure. (more…)

Some Interesting Articles and News Items

March 26, 2017

A few articles and news items that have caught my eye of late: (more…)

Big Little Lies

March 24, 2017

I'm warming to HBO's "Big Little Lies." I'm already more than won over by the opening credit sequence, and particularly the Michael Kiwanuka song that underpins it. He has also released a longer version of the track, which is itself but an edited version of the original 10+ minute opus






Paranoia, Fake News, and Enemies of the People

March 5, 2017

Before 2017, forty-three men had been president; all of them have received criticism, at least some of it deserved; some of them have been venal, some incompetent, at least one genuinely criminal. But none have proven so intellectually, emotionally and temperamentally unsuited to the job as the incumbent. It is difficult to see where this all will end. (more…)

Watching the Hawks, Watching the Lonely Whale

February 28, 2017

I recently revisited the story of the "loneliest whale in the world", a topic I first wrote about in 2012, in an article for The Washington Post Magazine. The other day, I was interviewed about the article, and about this whale specifically and whales more generally, by Tyrel Ventura and Tabetha Wallace on "Watching the Hawks" on RT America. It turned out to be one of the most enjoyable interviews I've done in a long time.

Kenya Book

February 6, 2017

Man, I find myself dreaming of, and reminiscing about, Kenya every day. It was such a fantastic trip, and provided so many wonderful memories. I sure do wish I was back there now. I have at least printed up some photographs for my walls, and also used a service called Shutterfly to produce some coffee table books. Dang, but it sure was expensive, but I figure it was worth it. It's great to just flip through the pages and find myself transported back to those incredible couple of weeks.

Kenya

January 24, 2017

Just returned from two weeks on safari in Kenya. It was incredible. Everything I dreamed it might be and then some. We visited Amboseli, Lake Nakuru, Mt Kenya, Samburu/Shaba/Buffalo Springs and the Masai Mara. Elephants, giraffes, zebras, buffaloes, wildebeest, hyenas, lions, and even some rhinos, a cheetah and a leopard. The accommodations were wonderful and most importantly the company was fantastic. One day, I'll sit down and write about it in more detail. For now, I'm still basking in the glow of it all.