Chris Pearson
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‘Greening’ militarized environments
in Mobilizing nature
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This chapter explores the 'greening' of French militarized environments. It argues that since the 1990s the military has tried to 'green' its relationship with the environment, motivated by the desire to reduce the likelihood of civilian complaints and to align itself with an environmentally attuned age. The military mobilizes animals to justify its presence and control of national territory. Sheep, birds, snakes, and butterflies have unwittingly become militarized 'companion species'. The presence of endangered species has drawn the military into collaboration with civilian environmental organizations. Whatever its flaws, the inclusion of militarized environments with the Natura 2000 network aligned military environmentalism with civilian sustainable development goals. Neutralizing the remnants of wars and military training contained within the French soil is an extended and ongoing process. Farmers and others have unearthed the explosive debris of war from former battlefields for decades.

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Mobilizing nature

The environmental history of war and militarization in Modern France


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