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SIR SAMUEL WHITE BAKER
CYPRUS AS I SAW IT IN 1879
page 349

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destruction of trees may be evaded like any of the Ten Commandments, because there is absolutely no staff, nor special officers for the supervision of woods and forests. This important subject requires a separate department, and nothing can be more simple if administered by persons qualified by education for the development of trees suitable to the island. Th e poverty of the local government, owing to the miserable conditions of our tenure, which send the cream to Turkey, and suckle the necessary staff upon the thin skimmed-milk, does not permit the real improvement of the forests. It is simply ridiculous to make laws without the active weapons to enforce authority ; we may as well rest satisfied with the game laws in England and dismiss our keepers, as prohibit the cutting of wood in Cyprus without supervising the forests by a staff of foresters. If the words " Thou shalt not steal, " even from a divine command, were sufficient to prevent felony and petty larceny, it woul be folly to incur the expense of police ; but we kno that practically all laws must be upheld by force, represented by the authorised guardians of the state. At this moment in Cyprus the law proclaims, " Tho shalt not cut a tree, " while practically you may cu as many as you like in the mountain forests, as ther is no person authorised to interfere with your acts. Some miserable offender may be pounced upon in hi own garden, near one of the principal towns, wher the law should never have been enforced, as interferin with the individual rights of private property ; but in the situations where the prohibition is of the firs importance, there is literally not an officer or man t prevent the usual depredations. Wh y ? Th e answe must be accepted. There is no money, and we canno

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