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July 26, 2010

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Too much information. The head of WikiLeaks tells us why he's posted more than ninety thousand secret documents on the war in Afghanistan.

From warden to inmate. In Cambodia, former prison head "Comrade Duch" becomes the first Khmer Rouge official convicted for war crimes.

By the time they get out of Phoenix. With the passage of Arizona's strict immigration law just days away, undocumented migrant workers are leaving the state in droves.

A common census approach. The most Canadian of controversies is the subject of the most Canadian of possible solutions: a compromise.

Primate suspects. South African tourists are infuriated by a rash of thefts from cars -- and their ire is directed at perps you could call the apes of wrath.

And...Number Two with a bullet. Fans of Kings of Leon love the band from the bottom of their hearts -- but at a St. Louis concert, a group of birds loves the band from the heart of their bottoms.

As It Happens, the Monday edition. Radio that hates a stool pigeon.


WIKILEAKS AFGHAN HEAD Duration: 00:06:44

Afghanistan, declassified.

Over the weekend, the website Wikileaks published more than ninety thousand U.S. military logs relating to the war in Afghanistan. Depending on whom you ask, the release is either a "criminal act" or one of the truest snapshots of the mission so far. Regardless, it's one of the biggest leaks in American history.

The man behind it is Julian Assange. He's the founder of Wikileaks. We reached him today in London.


FRIENDLY FIRE INCIDENT Duration: 00:06:54

One of the documents published by Wikileaks has caught the attention of As It Happens. That's because it tells a very different story than the one Canadians have heard.

The U.S. military log is dated September 3rd, 2006. It was the second day of one of the biggest military operations in Canadian history called Operation Medusa. The log says that four Canadian soldiers were killed by friendly fire. But Canadian forces have always maintained the men were killed in combat.

We've called Michel Drapeau to help us understand this log and what it could mean. He's a former colonel with the Canadian Forces. We reached him at his home in Ottawa.


STAY LIT Duration: 00:00:18

Album:LATIN/HOLY FUCK

Label:XL, YT 033CD

Persons/Roles:
BRIAN BORCHERDT - COMPOSER
MATT MCQUAID - COMPOSER
MATT SCHULZ - COMPOSER
GRAHAM WALSH - COMPOSER
HOLY FUCK - POP GROUP
HOLY FUCK - PRODUCER

CENSUS: COMPROMISE IDEA Duration: 00:07:04

Canadians, it seems, are quite passionate about their data.

Last week on the program, we spoke with Nils Veldhuis about the federal government's decision to make the long-form census voluntary.

That had Talkback callers lining up to volunteer their opinions.

Steve Cheung of Toronto writes:

"As citizens of Canada, we only need to fulfill very few duties: taxes, jury duty, and the long form census. These are part of the responsibilities of being a citizen, a small sacrifice for the privilege of living in Canada."

But Greg Willows feels that the government has no business sticking its nose in our business. He writes:

"This is not about doing our civic duties. It is about Corporate Canada wanting a cheap ride on the back of Canadians."

And Sandy Poole of Ottawa called Talkback to ask why no one was considering a compromise, rather than scrapping the mandatory long-form census fullstop.

Well, Sandy, today, the National Statistics Council stepped into the middle of the battlefield and suggested that very thing -- a compromise.

Ian McKinnon is the Chair of the Council, which is an advisory board to Statistics Canada. We reached him in Victoria, British Columbia.


EMBEE FOR PRESIDENT Duration: 00:00:17

Album:TELLINGS FROM SOLITARI/EMBEE

Label:SMD

Persons/Roles:
EMBEE - COMPOSER
EMBEE - PERFORMER

DA: KINGS OF LEON Duration: 00:02:28

Dateline, St. Louis, Missouri.Whenever you head out to see your favourite band play, you know there's always a chance the gig will be cancelled. The singer's hair dryer could break, the tour van could get a flat, or some lackey backstage could have messed up the band's concert rider -- you know, that list of demands musicians put out while on tour. For example, rappers Eminem and 50 Cent both demand a masseur in their game room; Cher needs a wig room; and Ozzy Osbourne needs an ear, nose and throat doctor ready to administer him with a shot of B-12.

But while some musicians go to extremes in their demands, others enjoy the simpler things in life. Kings of Leon, for example, request easy-to-procure items like "ultra-balm" tissues.

And when the Nashville band cancelled its gig last Friday in St. Louis, it wasn't because the tissues weren't there. It was because they were so necessary.

It seems that an infestation of pigeons living in the rafters of the Verizon Amphitheatre took a liking to the band. And they demonstrated their affection the only way pigeons can. No sooner had the band begun to play than bass player Jared Followill was hit with pigeon excrement. And the birds were no one-hit wonders. They continued to strike the bassist throughout the first two songs.

The venue had warned Kings of Leon's management beforehand about the pigeon problem, but the poop problem really came up -- or should I say down -- when opening acts The Postelles and The Stills essentially became "covered bands," after their performances.

Thinking it unfair to cancel at the last minute, the Kings tried to prevail -- but partway through their third song, the pigeons struck a decisive blow. They hit Jared on the cheek, uncomfortably near his mouth. At which point, the band left the stage. As drummer Nathan Followill later tweeted, "it was too unsanitary to continue."

The band has since apologized, and refunds are being issued.

Speaking of "painted faces," here's Kings of Leon with their hit song, "Use Somebody."


USE SOMEBODY Duration: 00:02:34

Album:ONLY BY THE NIGHT/KINGS OF LEON

Label:RCA, 88697-32712-2

Persons/Roles:
CALEB FOLLOWILL - COMPOSER
JARED FOLLOWILL - COMPOSER
MATTHEW FOLLOWILL - COMPOSER
NATHAN FOLLOWILL - COMPOSER
JACQUIRE KING - PRODUCER
KINGS OF LEON - POP GROUP
ANGELO PETRAGLIA - PRODUCER

CLOSING MONDAY

Well, that story almost makes me feel better about the colony of bats living on the ceiling of our studio.

Sshh. You'll wake them up.

Right. Sorry. We're going to take a short break now so that you can hear the latest news and weather, and then we'll be back with more As It Happens. When we return:

Comrade in shackles. The man in charge of the most notorious prison of the Khmer Rouge era, Comrade Duch, is sentenced in Cambodia.

Dawson's clique. Former Montreal Expos hero Andre Dawson is in good company, after he's inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame.

His sharp criticism was flat-out unacceptable. Reality-show judge Simon Cowell is probably grumpier than ever, when he's faced with a lawsuit for being mean.

Stay tuned. I'm LL.

And I'm DJ.


RETURN BILLS Duration: 00:00:20



FOA: DUCH Duration: 00:01:41

For the first time in Cambodia's history, a senior member of the Khmer Rouge has been sentenced for crimes committed during the genocide of the nineteen-seventies. Kiang Guek Eav, or Comrade Duch as he is more infamously known, was sentenced today to thirty-five years in prison, by the U.N.-backed Khmer Rouge Tribunal.

Comrade Duch ran the notorious S-21 prison in Cambodia's capital, Phnom Penh. As head of the prison, Duch undertook and oversaw horrific acts of torture against the inmates -- and was responsible for thousands of deaths.

During the trial, Comrade Duch profusely apologized for his actions. Here is an excerpt of the former prison warden talking to the tribunal back in November.


CAMBODIA : DUCH SENTENCED Duration: 00:07:02

Guy De Launey has been following the trial of Comrade Duch for the BBC. We reached him in Phnom Penh.


MASTER MAQUI Duration: 00:00:17

Album:11:11/RODRIGO Y GABRIELA

Label:ATO, ATO0080

Persons/Roles:
GABRIELA QUINTERO - COMPOSER
RODRIGO SANCHEZ - COMPOSER
ARDESHIR FARAH - GUITAR
RODRIGO Y GABRIELA - GUITAR DUO
RODRIGO SANCHEZ - PRODUCER
JORGE STRUNZ - GUITAR

FTR: ANDRE DAWSON Duration: 00:03:14

He had a bad knee, and played on an artificial field that was likened to playing on concrete. In spite of that, Andre Dawson was named the 1977 National League Rookie of the Year in his first season with the Montreal Expos. And ever since, Mr. Dawson has been one of the most popular players in Expos history.

Yesterday, Andre "The Hawk" Dawson was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York.

He played with the Expos for ten years before going on to join the Chicago Cubs. In his first season at Wrigley Field he was named the National League MVP. Not bad for a thirty-three year-old guy with a bum knee.

In his twenty-one year career, the centerfielder played with the Expos, the Cubs, the Boston Red Sox and the Florida Marlins. He won eight Gold Gloves, hit more than four hundred home runs, had more than three hundred stolen bases -- and had eleven knee surgeries.

At the ceremony yesterday, Andre Dawson reflected on the game he still loves. Here's an excerpt of his induction speech, for the record.


SOUL CONNECTION Duration: 00:00:09

Album:DIPLOMATS OF SOLID SOUND FEATURING THE DIPLOMETTES

Label:PRAVDA

Persons/Roles:
DIPLOMATS OF SOLID SOUND - COMPOSER
DIPLOMATS OF SOLID SOUND - POP GROUP

SOUTH AFRICA BABOONS Duration: 00:06:49

Whenever I go away on vacation, I do my best to blend in. For example, I only bring two Hawaiian shirts with me when I visit the Caribbean. I make sure to wear a tastefully mid-sized sombrero in Mexico City. And under no circumstances do I sew a Canadian flag on the gigantic backpack I cart around each day.

Like a lot of people, I go through these efforts not only because I want to try to experience the life of a local, but also because I don't want to stand out to criminals who see tourists as easy prey.

Well, it doesn't matter how hard visitors to Cape Town, South Africa try to blend in. They've become the targets of a new type of criminal ... and these guys aren't monkeying around. They're master thieves.

Theuns Vivian is Cape Town's destination development manager. We reached him at home.


SATELLITE Duration: 00:00:09

Album:COLIN JAMES & LITTLE BIG BAND

Label:V2391902, 000009

Persons/Roles:
JAMES C - COMPOSER
JAMES COLIN - MALE VOCAL

SC/MUSIC: SIMON COWELL MEAN Duration: 00:03:00

A woman is suing Simon Cowell for being mean.

Now, if this case gets to trial, you might imagine the jury would return a verdict of, "Well, duh." Mr. Cowell -- who created the program "Britain's Got Talent", on which he is a judge, and who also spent nine seasons as a judge on "American Idol" -- is renowned for his unsparing criticism. Or, to be a little less diplomatic, he's known as the joyless, insensitive ogre whose only pleasure is crushing the dreams of talent-show contestants like a steamroller crushes a robin's egg. Also, it looks like he cuts his own hair with a hedge clipper. And his shirts are too tight. But I digress.

As I was saying, you might imagine that suing Simon Cowell for being withering is like suing a school of piranha for skeletonizing you. But maybe Emma Amelia Pearl Czikai is trying to make a larger point.

Ms. Czikai -- who prefers to go by "Emma" -- appeared as a contestant on "Britain's Got Talent" in May of 2009. She sounded like this:It's true that Emma didn't really sound good. Which prompted this exchange with Simon Cowell.Pretty standard stuff: someone does her best and fails -- and then the mean judge makes her failure much worse with insults. But Emma thinks that standard stuff stinks.

So now she is suing Simon Cowell and "Britain's Got Talent", accusing the program and its judges of "exploitation, humiliation, degradation, and barbarism." She wants four million dollars -- some of which will compensate her for hurt feelings, and about half of which will make up for "loss of earnings".

The case probably won't proceed. She's already had one complaint rejected by the U.K.'s media regulator. But even if her singing's a little tone-deaf, Emma's public attack on reality-show bullying is note-perfect.


BLUE BASS Duration: 00:00:13

Album:ROLLING/REST AREA

Label:SELECT, JAJCD 817

Persons/Roles:
PATRICK DUBUC - COMPOSER
PATRICK DUBUC - PRODUCER
REST AREA - INSTRUMENTAL

TB: BP EXPERTS Duration: 00:01:44

It seems that there's no tactic like an old tactic.

On Friday, we told you that BP is hiring academic experts to help it defend itself in court. The company is facing several hundred lawsuits over the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

Cary Nelson of the American Association of University Professors told As It Happens that the contract BP is offering those experts effectively muzzles those best able to act as public watchdogs.

And that brought out the legal expert in Talkback.



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