Thumb sm
GI Ghost Town 01
Baumholder, Rheinland Pfalz, Germany
By Andrew Nunn
14 Mar 2015

An Autobahn sign off of the A62 shows exits for Baumholder and other small villages in Rheinland-Pfalz.
Rheinland-Pfalz, Germany
10 March 2015

Thumb sm
GI Ghost Town 02
Baumholder, Rheinland Pfalz, Germany
By Andrew Nunn
14 Mar 2015

A hillside covered in white and brown housing units and barracks for US Military personnel and their families while stationed in Baumholder, Germany.
10 March 2015

Thumb sm
GI Ghost Town 03
Baumholder, Rheinland Pfalz, Germany
By Andrew Nunn
14 Mar 2015

Local businesses and road signs pointing toward local villages and training areas on a main thoroughfare in Baumholder, coming from the A62.
Baumholder, Germany
10 March 2015 

Thumb sm
GI Ghost Town 04
Baumholder, Rheinland Pfalz, Germany
By Andrew Nunn
14 Mar 2015

Khalil Kanji Kamis, a refugee from Syrian Kurdistan makes a Döner Kebab Sandwich at a local restaurant he owns, which relies heavily on American patrons.  “95% of my customers are Americans.”
Baumholder, Germany 

Thumb sm
GI Ghost Town 05
Baumholder, Rheinland Pfalz, Germany
By Andrew Nunn
14 Mar 2015

Decorations in the Afrin Döner Kebab shop owned by Khalil Kanji Kamis, a refugee from Syrian Kurdistan, which relies heavily on American patrons.  “95% of my customers are Americans.”
Baumholder, Germany 
10 March 2015

Thumb sm
GI Ghost Town 06
Baumholder, Rheinland Pfalz, Germany
By Andrew Nunn
14 Mar 2015

A memorial on the grounds of Smith Barracks, which in the height of the war in Iraq housed the 2nd Brigade of the 1st Armored Division, which deployed for a total of 4 years of the 8 year war.  In those 4 years at war, Baumholder lost 63 soldiers in the line of duty.
Baumholder, Germany
10 March 2015

Thumb sm
GI Ghost Town 07
Baumholder, Rheinland Pfalz, Germany
By Andrew Nunn
14 Mar 2015

A slot-casino in the bowling alley of Smith Barracks for US Military personnel.
Baumholder, Germany
10 March 2015

Thumb sm
GI Ghost Town 08
Baumholder, Rheinland Pfalz, Germany
By Andrew Nunn
14 Mar 2015

A slot-casino in the bowling alley of Smith Barracks for US Military personnel.
Baumholder, Germany
10 March 2015

Thumb sm
GI Ghost Town 09
Baumholder, Rheinland Pfalz, Germany
By Andrew Nunn
14 Mar 2015

Train tracks used specifically for transporting military vehicles to and from the Baumholder military training area remain still and silent.
Baumholder, Germany
11 March 2015

Thumb sm
GI Ghost Town 10
Baumholder, Rheinland Pfalz, Germany
By Andrew Nunn
14 Mar 2015

A sign advertising a local church for the US Military community hangs in a used car lot, just outside of Smith Barracks.
Baumholder, Germany
11 March 2015

Thumb sm
GI Ghost Town 11
Baumholder, Rheinland Pfalz, Germany
By Andrew Nunn
14 Mar 2015

A building which used to house a strip club, a discotheque, two restaurants, and two bars, now sits idly, as the businesses have moved on as have their American patrons.
Baumholder, Germany
11 March 2015

Thumb sm
GI Ghost Town 12
Baumholder, Rheinland Pfalz, Germany
By Andrew Nunn
14 Mar 2015

A space formerly used as a fast food restaurant in Baumholder lies vacant.
Baumholder, Germany
11 March 2015

Thumb sm
GI Ghost Town 13
Baumholder, Rheinland Pfalz, Germany
By Andrew Nunn
14 Mar 2015

The window of a wig shop outside of the main gate of Smith Barracks, which specializes in wigs for African American women.
Baumholder, Germany
12 March 2015

Thumb sm
GI Ghost Town 14
Baumholder, Rheinland Pfalz, Germany
By Andrew Nunn
14 Mar 2015

Construction for a new park in the city of Baumholder.
Baumholder, Germany
12 March 2015

Thumb sm
GI Ghost Town 15
Baumholder, Rheinland Pfalz, Germany
By Andrew Nunn
14 Mar 2015

Charles Benson, a migrant from Ghana, cleans the windows of his barber shop, waiting for customers.  “I heard there were about 20,000 Soldiers in Baumholder, so I came here.  Shortly after I got here, I realized that just wasn’t true.”
Baumholder, Germany
12 March 2015

Thumb sm
GI Ghost Town 16
Baumholder, Rheinland Pfalz, Germany
By Andrew Nunn
14 Mar 2015

Steven Galloway an agent for Military Auto Source reviews documents on his computer so that a customer can pick up their new car.  “Business in Baumholder went from boom to bust.”

Thumb sm
GI Ghost Town 17
Baumholder, Rheinland Pfalz, Germany
By Andrew Nunn
14 Mar 2015

A dorment storefront with a display window filled with flags commemorating American and German Friendship.  One sign shows German and American flags, reading, “Baumholder …we belong together!"
12 March 2015
Baumholder, Germany

Thumb sm
GI Ghost Town 18
Baumholder, Rheinland Pfalz, Germany
By Andrew Nunn
14 Mar 2015

Buildings formerly used to house families of US Military personnel, which have since been transferred to house the local population.
Baumholder, Germany
12 March 2015

Thumb sm
GI Ghost Town 19
Baumholder, Rheinland Pfalz, Germany
By Andrew Nunn
14 Mar 2015

Blue’s Billiards on a Thursday night.  The barkeeper told me, “Sorry about the stool on the table, this one doesn’t work.”
Baumholder, Germany
13 March 2015

Thumb sm
GI Ghost Town 20
Baumholder, Rheinland Pfalz, Germany
By Andrew Nunn
14 Mar 2015

Former military housing units that have been returned to the local community as low-cost housing.
Baumholder, Germany
13 March 2015

Thumb sm
GI Ghost Town 21
Baumholder, Rheinland Pfalz, Germany
By Andrew Nunn
14 Mar 2015

Lisa Seybold and an unidentified German friend play darts on a quiet night at Blue’s Billiards.  “Everything has calmed way down, things used to be so crazy here.”
Baumholder, Germany
13 March 2015

Thumb sm
GI Ghost Town 22
Baumholder, Rheinland Pfalz, Germany
By Andrew Nunn
14 Mar 2015

A woman enjoys a beer outside of Vis-A-Vis Cafe as the sun sets on a warmer day in Baumholder, Germany.
13 March 2015

Thumb sm
GI Ghost Town 23
Baumholder, Rheinland Pfalz, Germany
By Andrew Nunn
14 Mar 2015

Racks of ribs cook on a wood fire at Stadtkrug restaurant.
Baumholder, Germany
13 March 2015

Thumb sm
GI Ghost Town 24
Baumholder, Rheinland Pfalz, Germany
By Andrew Nunn
14 Mar 2015

A plate of ribs served with a side of fries at Stadtkrug restaurant, in Baumholder. The ribs are made from a Texan dry-rub recipe, which Peter the grill chef learned while stationed there with his ex-wife.

Thumb sm
GI Ghost Town 25
Baumholder, Rheinland Pfalz, Germany
By Andrew Nunn
14 Mar 2015

Peter grills racks of ribs and steaks over a wood fire, and plates them with their sides, then serves them to the customers.
Baumholder, Germany
13 March 2015

Frame 0004
Lebanon's Hashish Industry In Hard Times
By Levant Desk
07 Oct 2014

September 21-October 4, 2014
Lebanon

Lebanon's lucrative hashish industry has been experiencing a turbulent year as environmental problems and the fallout of the Syrian war are having conflicting effects on crop production. As the harvest season begins, hash farmers are beginning to feel the averse affects of an unpredictable year. An extremely dry winter saw a sharp decline in rainfall, leading to a withered and depleted crop yield. At the same time, crop burning raids by the Lebanese Army have become less frequent, as they are preoccupied with securing the Lebanese-Syrian border from the threat of the Islamic State Group and the al-Qaeda affiliated Nusra Front. While the farmers have less to fear from the Lebanese authorities, they now have to fear the very environment they have depended on for decades.

Shot list:

Smoker (male) lighting and smoking a joint (indoor)
Various shots of the preparation of a joint (indoor)
Various shots of crowded streets (outdoor)
Wide shot top view of Bekaa valley (outdoor)
Following car into the hash farms (outdoor)
Various shots of farmers cutting the hash plant (outdoor)
Farmer’s hand with hash in it (outdoor)
Farmer’s 7 year old son in the field (outdoor)
Gun sticking out of land owner’s waistband (outdoor)
Various shots of owners and farmers weighing the harvested hash (outdoor)
Hash plant in dealer’s house (outdoor)
Various shots of farmers collecting the harvested plants for weighing (outdoor)
Various shots of hash plant in dealer’s house and in the field (outdoor)
Farmer collecting the harvested plants (outdoor)
Farmer shows his hand with hash in it (outdoor)
Close up of farmer’s hand with hash in it (outdoor)
Various shots of MAG submachine gun at dealer’s house (outdoor)
Smoker (male) preparing a joint (indoor)
Smoker (male) lighting and smoking a joint (indoor)
Various shots of consumer (male) lighting and smoking has from a pipe (indoor)
Pan-right of smoker's apartment leading to preparing a joint (indoor)
Smoker (female) prepares a joint (indoor)
Smoker (female) lights a joint (indoor)
Smoker (female) prepares a joint (indoor)

(01:35) Farmer 1: “This is the main season now, we work all year long for this season. It’s the same season for apples and hash. We harvest and sell them both.” (01:48)

(01:49) Farmer 2: (01:47) “This bunch is about 15kg, we need about 20 of these to make 1kg of Hashish. When we hit it with the metal tool the buds drop off and we throw away the branches.” (02:26)

(02:30) Farmer 1: (02:30) “The apples sell according to the market price. If we get a good price we sell them, if not we put them on the crossroads. But the hashish always gives a good price. We suffered a lot this year to water the apples and the hashish. We run around all day long for a bit of water. This is my son yes, he is 7 years old and he also works with me.”

(03:16) “We were not able to water the apples well, or the hashish, we were not able to water them properly. Before we used to have a lot of water for the plants. Now we do not have much. There are a lot of Syrians here. We have about 15-20 workers.”

(03:37) “We start planting in the spring, we work all year and now it is the season. At the end of September they will both be ready.”

(04:00) “Al-Bekaa valley as you know, has a population of over one million and a half. Those who do not plant hashish benefit from it in other ways.”

(04:42) Farmer 2: “When you’re child is hungry, you can wait for a day or two, a month maybe, but what next? If my kid is crying he wants milk, where do I get it from? Do I allow my kid to die in front of my eyes, while I look around and see other people eating? This might lead me to look for money illegally. This [pointing to the marijuana plant] keeps my pride; I do not steal or hurt anyone for money. It is true I get tired as a farmer, but at least I find something in return without hurting anyone; it has benefits more than harms and they have been planting it since the old days and it appears on the news. They did different studies and researches about it in USA and UK, it is legal in Switzerland but they cannot export it. Are we smarter than these countries that they still are still doing researches about it? They give a small dose for a young kid who has cancer; he stays 6 hours in a lot of pain. Try giving him a dose of hash and he feels nothing.”

“In 2014 they tried everything to distract us, they tried to plant chestnuts, which cannot survive here in our country, they tried to plant saffron which needs experts from Iran, they tried to distract us in every way possible so they can keep stealing from us.”

What do they want to do to the people? Al-Bekaa valley has over a million and a half people living in it. Even the people who do not plant it, benefit from it. If the farmer does not plant the hashish, he cannot afford to use a carpenter or a black smith for example, he cannot buy things from the supermarket, and it will snow ball and nobody will have a job.”

“President Kamil Chamoun used to hunt in this area, he used to love to hunt. So the government used to bring trucks and confiscate the hashish just to show the press that they are working on solving the hashish problem. After they were done they would give the hashish back.”

“I am almost 60 years old and we have been planting the hashish for as long as I can remember, my mother and father used to plant it before me, and my grandfather before them. Ever since the French colonization they have been planting it and the French government, along with the Lebanese government, used to come here and get into conflicts with the inhabitants of the area. And they would still plant it. Ever since the 1950's this plant had not left this village and not only this village but all of the Bekaa. I am a person from the Bekaa and I represent all of Bekaa, and the people of Bekaa all represent each other." (08:03)

Frame 0004
Food insecurity: Does South Korea hav...
Seoul, South Korea
By maltekol
12 Jul 2013

The World Health Organization warns that overpopulation and a lack of arable land contribute to global food insecurity. So scientists are developing new farming technology to offset potential food shortages. Researchers in South Korea are experimenting with vertical farms; gardens that instead of spreading out, go straight up.
Jason Strother and Malte Kollenberg report from Seoul.

Almost half of South Korea’s 50 millions citizens live here in the capital. And in a country with very limited agricultural land, feeding all of these people presents a challenge. Some observers say the nation faces increasing food insecurity.

Park Hwan-il is food security analyst at the Samsung Economic Research Institute in Seoul.

Int: Park Hwan-il, SERI (English)
"The food self sufficiency rate in Korea is just about 26 percent. Which means three quarters of the food we consume is from the foreign countries. That means the Korean people’s health and nutrition depends on outside factors that we cannot control”

Park says that climate conditions or other instability in the international market makes importing food unpredictable. It’s not only a problem for Korea, but for many other countries too. But some scientists say there is a solution.

Int. from online: Dickson Despommier, Columbia University (English)
“My name is Dickson Despommier: I teach at Columbia Universities Medical School and school of public health. The world would be a much better place, if we had vertical farming.”

Despommier says tower-like hydroponic farms could someday stand alongside skyscrapers as a key food source for billions of city dwellers

Int. from online: Dickson Despommier, Columbia University (English)
“Here’s my vision of what a vertical farm might look like. My gold standard for this is the Apple Store in New York City on 5th Avenue. If you took that building and made it into a five-story building. Now in the building you have multiple floors of course, and inside each floor you have multiple layers of crops.”

Despommier says vertical farms could be a key solution for countries with a growing population or limited arable land. Like South Korea.

30-kilometers south of Seoul in Suwon, the government is trying to make Despommier’s vision a reality. The Rural Development Administration has built the prototype of a vertical farm.Inside this research facility a small team of scientists is working on turning this concept a marketable product.So far, their experiment is only 3-storeys high. But they hope that one day, the technology will expand and be capable of feeding the entire nation.

Agrarian scientist Choi Kyu-hong is still sorting out more basic challenges.

Int: Choi Kyu-hong, RDA (English)
“The plant factory requires a lot of energy, the light energy and the heating and cooling energy. So we provide the heating or cooling energy using geothermal systems. We adopted the solar cell system to provide light source energies, but we are still (only) provide 15 percent of the total energy”

Choi adds his team still faces many challenges:

Int: Choi Kyu-hong, RDA (English)
“We are still (in) the research state, its take some time to make a commercial plant factories. We are firstly trying to find out the optimum wavelength of light”

Choi says the problem is that different plants grow at different speeds, depending on the light’s color and wavelength.

But even though the government hasn’t perfected vertical farming technology yet, some in the private sector are already putting it to use. Inside this Lotte Mart, a supermarket franchise in Seoul, lettuce grows under the lights of this small vertical farm.

Store mangers say produce grown in this facility has extra benefits for customers.

Int: Kim Chang-jo, Lotte Mart
(Korean) “We are the first super market to install a vertical farm. We hope that it will draw attention to environmental concerns. The plants are affordable and no pesticides were used, so its healthier for our customers”

Kim says the vertical farm lettuce costs the same as lettuce grown the old fashioned way. But some analysts say that all the lights and heating systems required to operate a vertical farm is just too expensive to make it a viable solution for food insecurity.

Int: Park Hwan-il, SERI
(English) “Vertical farming costs too much. / Even though the productivity in vertical farming is very high, very good, but it does not have the merit in price or marketing advantage at all”

Back at the Suwon experimental vertical farm, scientists admit they still have a long way to go. The Rural Development Administration’s Lee Hye jin gives a rough time frame.

Int: Lee Hye-jin, RDA
(Korean) “It might take at least five more years of research to make progress on these obstacles. Then vertical farms might be ready for commercial use”

The South Korean scientists say that once all the problems are resolved, vertical farms won't just have to stop at three-stories. The sky is the limit.

Thumb sm
Trekking in a 20 million year old rai...
Madeira, Portugal
By Luis Miguel Rodrigues
15 Jun 2013

Water channels that after more than 350 years continue to deliver water from inside the island to the villages and farms. The trek paths follow this water routes until its final destination

Thumb sm
Drought in Brazil (6 of 25)
Andaraí, Bahia, Brazil
By Flavio Forner
17 Mar 2013

A farmer wears thick layers of clothing, despite the heat, for protection from the sun.

Thumb sm
Drought in Brazil (5 of 25)
Andaraí, Bahia, Brazil
By Flavio Forner
17 Mar 2013

A farmer walks with his cattle to graze on the side of highway.

Thumb sm
Drought in Brazil (4 of 25)
Andaraí, Bahia, Brazil
By Flavio Forner
17 Mar 2013

A Former farmer. After many years of drought, this is his biggest in 50 years

Thumb sm
Drought in Brazil (9 of 25)
Vera Cruz, Bahia, Brazil
By Flavio Forner
10 Jan 2013

The cattle are too thin. The little grass that remains is taken by stronger animals.

Thumb sm
Drought in Brazil (8 of 25)
Andaraí, Bahia, Brazil
By Flavio Forner
10 Jan 2013

The water tank is almost dry and the little that is left is not enough for cattle on properties near Andaraí.

Frame 0004
Farmlands in Syria in 2007
Damascus
By Martin Jay
01 Mar 2007

Farm fields and agriculture in the rural outskirts of Damascus in Syria in 2007.