For more than a decade two mugshots of fugitive environmentalists have sat amongst airplane hijackers, bombers and murders on the FBI’s Most Wanted Domestic Terrorists list.
One of the photos is of a tall, hipster looking engineer from Seattle. He’s wearing a red shirt, has a light shadowy beard.
His name: Joseph Mahmoud Dibee.
The other photo is of a young white woman with thick eyebrows, piercing brown eyes and long brown hair. Across her back is a large tattoo: a bird with its wings outstretched, soaring.
Her name: Josephine Sunshine Overaker.
To the authorities, Joseph Mahmoud Dibee and Josephine Sunshine Overaker are dangerous, violent extremists, part of an eco-terrorist movement that in 2005 the then Deputy Assistant Director of the FBI called the number one domestic terror threat in America.
And now one of them – Joseph Dibee – has been caught.
For the past eighteen months journalist Leah Sottile has been recording with Joe Dibee as his case progresses through the courts and as she works to understand the truth behind the mugshots and how they ended up here.
Burn Wild is a story of radical environmentalism and morality that journeys into one of the most thorny and murky questions of our time: How far is too far to go to stop the planet burning?
Answering this will take Leah and producer Georgia Catt into radical activist communities past and present on both sides of the Atlantic, amongst people who’ve spent their lives running from the authorities, and those who carry the weight of that word – terrorist – on their shoulders.
In this story people will take away very different things on what they hear, but where you sit isn’t a question of the past. It’s a question of right now.