OPERATION NOAH by Charles Laugs


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When completed, the Kariba Dam on the Zambesi River in Northern Rhodesia will form a lake wider than the English Channel, displacing 50,000 natives and many more thousands of wild animals. This short book written by an English television producer and sponsored by the Fauna Preservation Society of London, tells of ""Operation Noah"", the often unsuccessful efforts of a few men to rescue these dying animals from the rising waters of Kariba Lake. In the opinion of at least one reader the author fails to realize fully the possibilities of his dramatic story. Writing in accepted TV style, with an eye to audience reaction and camera shots rather than to scientific detail, he tells more of the discomforts involved in ""Operation Noah"" than of rescued animals or displaced natives, and barely mentions the immense potentialities of the Kariba Dam. Some passages, such as those describing the rescue of elephants from a foundering island, are excellent; others, deprived of a TV screen and the voice of a commentator, are dull. Brief postscript notes fill some of the scientific gaps in the narrative, but the many excellent photographs are named only in an index. A book designed primarily for ""viewers"" rather than ""readers,"" this limited but still interesting volume should appeal to animal lovers, camera enthusiasts, youthful would-be explorers and those TV addicts who do open a book. The real story of Kariba Dam and Operation Noah is yet to be written.

Pub Date: Aug. 19th, 1960
Publisher: Coward-McCann