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April 12 & April 15, 2012 - from Libya - Ganta, Liberia - Montreal - Paris

From our correspondents around the world...

 

A man points to the place where a bomb exploded. The target was a UN convoy in Benghazi, Libya. The attack reinforces concerns about instability in Libya, since the overthrow of Muammar Gaddafi. (Photo: REUTERS/Esam Al-Fetori)

Remember Libya? The one before Syria. Some Libyans think we've forgotten and it's helping tip the country into chaos.

If a neighbour killed your kin and went unpunished, you'd have an idea what it's like in Liberia, where victims of war crimes live in peace without justice.

And from the archives, we strut with The Society of Revellers and Elegant People. Of course they're French. French-African.

Then, as cholera makes a comback in Haiti, a Canadian author tells why it's poised to become the quintessential disease of our time.

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Libya's uprising, revisited

The uprising's over, but not everyone in Libya got the memo, apparently. 

The daily chorus of gunfire struck a new top note this week when somebody chucked a bomb at the UN's top diplomat as he motored through Benghazi, birthplace of the Libyan revolution.

Ironic, really, having a go at that particular international institution. At a time when some Libyans are complaining the world's not paying attention to them now that Syria's on the boil.

The fact is, Libya's a long way from a day at the beach. For a little perspective, Rick spoke to Canadian journalist Hadeel al-Shalchi, Middle East correspondent for Reuters, in the Libyan capital of Tripoli.



Comfort Tokpah, 50, lost her husband and brother in Liberia's civil war and was forced to marry a child soldier. (Photo: Bonnie Allen)

Peace without justice in Liberia

Later this month, we'll hear a verdict in the case of the first African Head of State ever tried for war crimes.

Charles Taylor, a former President of Liberia, faces 11 counts for crimes he allegedly committed in neighbouring Sierra Leone.

They include murder and rape, and recruiting child soldiers

Remarkably enough, neither he -- nor anyone else -- faces any charges for triggering a war in his own country, which killed 1/4 million Liberians.

And now compels the innocent to live side-by-side with people guilty of committing atrocities against them. Dispatches contributor Bonnie Allen tells us two of those stories.

Listen to Bonnie's documentary

And a cruel footnote to that story: Alhaji Kromah, the former rebel leader in charge of the state broadcaster where Moses works, just got a new, more important, government job.

The President's appointed him an Ambassador-at-large in the Foreign Ministry. Observers say it likely means his prospects for prosecution are even more distant. But on the upside, it means Moses won't have to look at him every day.


The elephant in the room

As some of you may be aware Dispatches is being cancelled after 12 years on-air.

Our last program airs June 21st, a casualty of budget cuts at the CBC, as many of you have noted in colourful terms on Facebook, emails and on Twitter. Where, to our surprise, we found ourselves trending as one of yesterday's most discussed subjects.

We thought we'd share some of the notes you shared with us, about what the program has meant to you.

Kevin Judge in Lethbridge:
Your correspondents...have moved me to tears, caused me to bellow in inchoate rage at some injustice, and whoop for joy when good people prevailed.

From Sharon McNeil of Etobicoke, Ontario:
I've listened to you in taxis, because the drivers say you keep them informed about Africa, as well as other countries in other continents. My eyes are swelled with tears because of the loss of my window on the world. You will be missed.

A tweet from Robert Riecken:
I am truly going to miss your show. There were few weeks where I did not listen to the show twice. Disappointed.

You can read much more at Your Dispatches.


Haitians with relatives being treated for cholera wait outside a hospital. (Photo/Reuters)

"The quintessential disease of our time"

Cholera is once again on the rise in Haiti. It first resurfaced there 18 months ago, the first outbreak in a hundred years.

As many as 7,000 people have died from it so far, and it's weakened a 1/2 million more.

The infection took the public health system by storm and surprise. Many believe it was brought in by UN peacekeeping troops from Nepal.

In fact, around the world, cholera is on the road to becoming "the quintessential 21st-century disease," according to Dr. Myron Echenberg.

He's Professor Emeritus of History at McGill University in Montreal, and author of the recent book, Africa In The Time of Cholera: a History of Pandemics From 1817 To The Present, published by Cambridge University Press. 

Professor Echenberg joined Rick from Montreal last April.

Listen to our interview with Prof. Echenberg

Since we spoke to Prof. Echenberg last April, Haiti has reported a new outbreak of more than 70 new cases each day of the last month.


Jocelyn Armel models some of the tamer Sapeur fashion in Paris. (Photo/Reuters)

Revellers and Elegant People

The catwalks of Paris are a showcase for over-the-top extravagance, but the French fashion houses are getting a run for their money from some African interlopers.

Call them the sons of SAPE. That's pronounced "SAP," a French acronym that roughly translates as "The Society of Revellers and Elegant People."

Most are men, mostly from the Democratic Republic of Congo, all bought into the idea that it's better to look good, than to live good.

Genevieve Oger was on the catwalk a year ago to catch their look for herself.

Listen to Genevieve's dispatch now

Check out more Sapeur looks in Papa Wemba's musical tribute to "S'apologie" on YouTube


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This program is the work Dawna Dingwall, Alison Masemann, and Steve McNally. With technical producers Nima Shams and Tim Lorimer. Senior producer Alan Guettel, and Rick MacInnes-Rae.

We'll bring you the world!

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