We've got the whole Hans and his world. Former U.N. weapons inspector
Hans Blix would have a lot to tell the U.K.'s Iraq Inquiry -- but he
tells us instead.
Comedy equals tragedy plus Armando Ianucci. The Oscar-nominated
Scottish writer-director of the political satire "In The Loop" shares
his view of the inquiry so far.
Women and children first. Examining why -- and how -- the Prime
Minister intends to put maternal and child health at the top of the G-8
Children should be seen and not herded. A charity worker in Haiti tells
us about the risks facing kids after the earthquake -- and the lengths
their parents are going to to protect them.
Taking no for an answer. New brainscanning techniques allow a
twenty-three-year-old in a vegetative state to communicate with doctors.
And...widow's beak. A roving game bird with a taste for the cruelest
vengeance torments a British town with his reign of terror - or at least
As It Happens, the Thursday edition. Radio that senses a clear and pheasant danger.
So far, Britain's Chilcot Inquiry has heard testimony from key players
in the Iraq war. But one surprising omission has been the former chief
U.N. weapons inspector, Hans Blix.
Following tip-offs by the U.K., Dr. Blix visited numerous sites in
Iraq. But all Dr. Blix and fellow inspectors found while searching those
sites were conventional weapons, documents or nothing at all. Dr. Blix
has since said that, had he been given more time, he could have resolved
the "Weapons of Mass Destruction" issue -- to the chagrin, as the
inquiry has been hearing, of former Prime Minister Tony Blair and
foreign secretary Jack Straw.
We reached Hans Blix in London, England.
After that interview, and much of the testimony at the Chilcot Inquiry,
it's fair to reflect on the adage that truth can be stranger than
fiction. An adage that Armando Ianucci has built a career on.
He's the man behind the political satire "In The Loop" -- a film that
tells the story of the President of the United States and the Prime
Minister of Britain planning to launch a war in the Middle East. Behind
the scenes, government officials and advisors spin intelligence, in an
effort to promote, or prevent, the war. If that sounds familiar, it's
The movie was written and directed by Scottish writer-comedian Armando
Ianucci. He's been nominated for an Oscar for "Best Adapted Screenplay"
for "In the Loop". And he can confirm that the truth behind the
invasion is far stranger than the fiction he created. We reached Mr.
Iannucci in Chalfont St. Giles, England.
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We are not immune to your feedback.
Last night we spoke with Dr. Paul Offit, the Chief of Infectious
Diseases at The Children's Hospital of Philidelphia. We spoke with him
about an article published in the British Medical Journal, The Lancet,
in 1998. That article drew a link between children's vaccinations and
autism -- a link that has since been largely discredited. And on
Tuesday, the study, as we heard from the Editor of The Lancet, was
Well, those interviews pricked your interest, and you let you let Talkback know.
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Since the earthquake in Haiti three weeks ago, most of the population
of the capital, Port-au-Prince, has been vulnerable to injury, hunger,
thirst, and disease. But the most vulnerable of all are the children of
Haiti, many of whom are now orphans.
Today, ten Americans who were being detained in Haiti were charged
with child kidnapping -- for trying to take children out of the country
To fight child trafficking, groups that work with children are trying
to register thousands of unaccompanied children found in orphanages, and
wandering around destroyed neighbourhoods. But some parents are willing
to send their kids away, even with people they don't know, if it might
give them a chance of a better life.
Laurent Duvillier works with the Save the Children charity in Haiti. We reached him in Port-au-Prince.
The news is coming up next, but there's more As It Happens to come in just a few minutes. When we return:
Maternal instincts. Representatives from the government and the
opposition discuss Stephen Harper's decision to make the health of women
and infants a top G-8 priority.
Guinea wakes up from a nightmare. Just four months after a horrific
military attack, that same military appoints a forward-thinking interim
He's got a whole lot of bones to peck. What's going on in one North
Yorkshire town is exactly like Hitchcock's "The Birds", if it were
called "The Bird", and wasn't really that scary.
Stay tuned. I'm CO.
And I'm BB.
Hello again, I'm CO.
And I'm BB. This is As It Happens, Part Two.
Does a new brain-scan on vegetative patients work? According to one patient, the answers are "yes" and "no".
The flotsam thickens: when a Quebec dump suffers erosion, the result is a whole lot of floating garbage.
Those stories are still to come on As It Happens.
The health of women and children has seldom, if ever, been high on
Canada's list of political priorities. Prime Minister Stephen Harper
says it is now.
He's declared that, as the President of this year's G8 summit, he'll
champion a major initiative to put maternal and child health front and
centre on the agenda.
We'll be speaking tonight with Bev Oda, the federal Minister of
International Co-operation -- but first, Dr. Carolyn Bennett. She's the
Liberal Member of Parliament for the riding of St. Paul's, and we
reached her in Toronto.
Bev Oda is the Minister of International Co-operation and the lead
spokesperson for the Prime Minister's office on his initiative to make
women and children's health the top priority for the G8.
|FRIENDS HELP FRIENDS HELP FRIENDS|
|SANDRO PERRI|| - ||COMPOSER|
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The village of Newsham in North Yorkshire, England, is an old,
picturesque settlement, made up of stone houses and quiet lanes. In
other words, it's a lovely place to go for long walks.
But lately, some of the locals of Newsham have had second thoughts
about taking those walks. Because when they walk, a monster walks with
Sonia Hall was a victim of that monster. She's in Newsham.
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Four months ago, Guinea was the site of unspeakable brutality and
political chaos. Government soldiers attacked thousands of protesters
gathered in a stadium in the capital, Conakry. They shot at random. They
raped women in broad daylight.
Now, the military junta appears to be peacefully relinquishing power.
Guinea's new military commander has appointed an opposition leader
named Jean-Marie Doré interim prime minister. Mr. Doré will now appoint a
transitional government and call an election for later this year.
Sidya Touré is another opposition leader in Guinea. We reached him in Conakry.
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|MARTIN TIELLI|| - ||COMPOSER|
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|MICHAEL PHILLIP WOJEWODA|| - ||PRODUCER|
When you see a bottle floating in the ocean, it's easy to imagine it's
come from a distant land, and carries a message from a bright-eyed
child, or a poem from a lovestruck mariner. When you see a whole bunch
of bottles, well -- it's just garbage.
Unfortunately for residents of a small island in the Gulf of St.
Lawrence, there are a whole bunch of bottles in the water. Soil erosion
is wearing away at the island's old dump. It used to sit seventy-five
feet from the shore. Now it overlooks the ocean. And every time a storm
hits, garbage invariably spills right into the sea.
Thelma Feltmate has lived on the island for about 20 years, and is the
president of the Futures Committee, a community group formed to address
the problem. We reached her at her home on Entry Island, Quebec.
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Some stories can be summed up in a headline that's doesn't require much
further explanation. Like this one, from today's Regina Leader-Post:
"Tractor-trailer rollover near Sintaluta causes traffic delays". Just
eight words, and you already know that you're going to be late for your
breakfast meeting at Val's Kitchen on Main Street in Sintaluta.
But sometimes a headline seems like refrigerator magnet poetry
assembled by a three-year-old. Like this one, from the Australian
Broadcasting Corporation's website: "Cane toad sausages on the menu for
I'll repeat that: "Cane toad sausages on the menu for quolls".
Okay, well, we all know what cane toads are. They're the big, fat,
ugly Hawaiian amphibians imported to Australia in 1935 to eat scarabs
that were infesting sugar cane in Queensland. That didn't work, and now
cane toads have infested Australia. They eat small rodents, birds,
plants, dog food, and garbage. And their skin is toxic, so most animals
die if they eat one. No one likes them very much.
We all know what sausages are. "On the menu" we understand. "Quolls", though...that doesn't sound like a real word.
Imagine my surprise to find that there's a whole species of small
marsupial carnivores native to Australia and Tasmania called "quolls".
And they're adorable -- like a combination of a mouse, a cat, and the
cartoon chipmunks Chip and Dale. But they're endangered. And that's
where the cane toad sausages come in.
Part of the reason quolls are endangered is that they've been eating
cane toads. So university researchers came up with a plan. It's based on
the idea of "taste aversion". They're going to make sausages out of
cane toad legs. And they're going to put a chemical in the sausages --
one that the quolls really won't like.
Ms. Perry visited the lab where Ms. O'Donnell is mincing up toad legs. Here's an excerpt from that conversation.
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|TONY GRACE|| - ||PRODUCER|
Imagine being trapped in a world where no one can hear you -- surviving
a car crash, only to emerge in a vegetative state... mute, immobile and
Now, after all that time, imagine finally communicating with the outside world.
Well, Patient 23 doesn't have to imagine -- this is his life.
According to a new study, the twenty-nine-year-old man who's spent the
past five years in a vegetative state has been able to communicate with
researchers, thanks to a new brainscanning technique.
Dr. Adrian Owen is a co-author of that study and a neuroscientist with
the Medical Research Council at Cambridge University. We reached him in
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