They'll bring you the world: the next generation
Our program for the August 6 holiday on Radio One highlights some of the young Canadian freelance reporters we heard during the past Dispatches season -- our final one on CBC Radio.
They take us on a walk around Change Square in Yemen and breathe the dust and stench around a surprising real-estate boom in a Mumbai slum.
Our China contributor endures the sting of Dr. Wang's miracle healing bees.
We hear how Colombians make deals with the no-name dead -- victims of violence floating down their largest river.
And below, on this page -- a whole lot more stories from afar..
Our correspondent gets a nasty reception in the one country that mourned Muammar Ghadaffi.
Download the podcast (right click: save target as)
Mourning a dictator in the mosque that Moammar built
Rokupa's Freetown Central Mosque (aka Gadhafi Mosque) (photo: Ambrose Boani.)
Ghadafi also funded rebels Charles Taylor and Foday Sankoh, who unleashed civil war and the blood diamond trade on the west African state in the Nineties.
But his largesse since then seems to have erased the bad memories, and it makes folks mad when Canadian journalist Damon van der Linde comes to visit.
Children dance at the main stage in Change Square, Sanaa, Yemen - the primary venue for Yemen's protest movement. Protests continue despite a new president, hand-picked by his predecessor. (Photo: Samuel Aranda)
Meanwhile In Yemen, Reporter Lindsay Mackenzie watched Arab Spring become an all-season affair this year -- after protestors ousted President Ali Abdullah Salah, only to see him hand power to his deputy.
Advocates for democracy peacefully occupyed the streets around Change Square for months, biding their time with gardens and foosball and -- and relentless demands for democracy.
Mumbai slum dwellers go for the green
An aerial view of the Dharavi section of Mumbai, often described as India's largest slum. The area is experiencing a surprising boom in real estate prices (photo: Reuters)
Edward Birnbaum is an urban planner by trade. One of his dispatches from India featured the huge slum in the middle of Mumbai. A messy place that doesn't have much going for it except location, location, location.
Which seems a contradiction. But developers are eyeballing the land. It's already pricey, and would be worth even more if the residents would just sell up.
Instead, many are playing it cagey, and renovating by stealth, hoping to cash in if and when it goes to market.
Edward met some of the players.
Other dispatches from Edward are below
Worker bees: Bees are traditional health workers in China, stinging to help cure what ails you. (Photo: Danielle Nerman)
In China -- our correspondent took the sting out of Dr. Wang's miracle bees in a painful test of traditional medicine.
And while the bee therapy did cure the sinus problem, after the treatment Danielle developed a huge swelling in her neck on the side where she got the full sting. It took a week to go away.
Following these pieces from the August 6 program are many more reports from young Canadians abroad -- including Danielle's beautifully told tale of some lost and found photographs and a romanitic reunion. That's one we called Visions Of Joanna.
Also: reports from Congo and Uganda by Dennis Porter, Seraja Coelho's features from Europe, Lori Chodos in Peru, Myles Estey in Mexico, Susanna Ferreira with the former soldiers searching for a payday in Haiti -- and many more.
No-Name dead enrich lives of the living
Hernan Montoya is the town mystic in Colombia's Puerto Berrio. He conducts ceremonies for souls in purgatory, particularly those who are among the "no name dead" Photo/Nadja Drost
In Colombia, the Magdelena River snakes the length of a country long caught in the coils of drug and political violence.
And the river has become a conveyer of the dead. A place to dump the bodies.
In downstream cities like Puerto Berrio, it's given rise to a kind of obsession with the dead, where strangers claim and name the floating remains.
But what began as compassion, has turned into a competition. Canadian journalist Nadja Drost found the living have come to expect favours from the dead.
Nadja Drost is a Canadian print and broadcast journalist covering Colombia for "GlobalPost," an online international news site. This was her first contribution to Dispatches.
Below, a selection from many other Dispatches reports from young Canadian reporters living and travelling abroad.
The website In2EastAfrica featured the wedding of Education Minister Jessica Alupo and news that her groom paid her family a "bride price" of more than $20,000. Those pushing for reform of marriage laws in Uganda say the payments make men feel entitled to abuse their wives. (Screenshot: In2EastAfrica.net)
Uganda's marriage trap
The rules seem crafted to stifle a woman's wishes at virtually every turn. Parliament wants to change all that, but is catching flak from all sides.
Even from women, in a country where their wedding terms of endearment are counted in cattle. Dispatches contributor Dennis Porter picks up our story with a couple preparing for their big day.
Chinese poet and dissident Liao Yiwu was forced into exile for his critcism of the Chinese state. Photo/AP
Compelled to write, forced to flee China
China once again leaned on noted dissident Ai Weiwei in an effort to shut him up.
He's been accused of tax evasion and ordered to pay millions, but defied a gag order and went public with the story.
He remains in his Beijing home, but other dissidents are not so lucky.
For them, exile is the only answer as China moves to silence dissenters who might be getting ideas from the Arab Spring.
Correspondent Saroja Coelho has the story of Liao Yiwu, who used to be bound by shackles to fellow victims of state repression.
Having fled the threat of yet another prison term in China, he is today a celebrity in Germany, where he now feels bound to tell the stories of the downtrodden.
Our thanks to the Digital Archive for Chinese Studies at the University of Leiden in the Netherlands for the original recording of Liao Yiwu's poem, Massacre.
A tarp baring the insignia of Guatemala City's "volunteers" covers a drug-trade murder victim. Photo/Myles Estey
While covering the war in El Salvador back in the 80s, Rick remembers well bumping into a Canadian diplomat visiting the capital from his post in neighbouring Guatemala.
The city of El Salvador was under seige at the time.
The nights were a flickering horror show of screams and gunfire and phosphorous flares strobing wildly in the night sky. By day, there were running battles and bodies in the street.
So Rick asked, "why on earth would you choose to visit...this...when you could be in Guatemala City?"
He's never forgotten the answer.
"It's safer here" he said, kidding only a little. In his view, a war zone was safer than the Guatemalan capital. But if it was true then, it's unfortunately still true all these years later.
Drug-driven street violence is so bad, they have thousands of volunteers driving around each night just tending to the carnage, and Canadian journalist Myles Estey is with them to witness it.
Hawa Jundi in a temporary camp where she sheltered after her village of Sally was bombed from the air. Photo/Jared Ferrie
Blue Nile bombers
Bosco Ntaganda's not the only person wanted for war crimes that's enjoyhing a free pass these days.
Malawi this week refused to honor its obligation to arrest a visiting president, Omar al-Bashir of Sudan, who's accused of genocide in Darfur.
In Malawi, a spokesman said it was a matter of "brotherly co-existence."
Now, as it did in Darfur, Sudan started an aerial bombing campaign against rebels in its southern border area.
President al-Bashir denies his government is bombarding the Blue Nile State. But Dispatches contributor Jared Ferrie hears different on the ground...
Members of Haiti's rogue military parade through the streets on March 29th, the country's Constitution Day. (Photo: Susanna Ferreira)
Haiti's rogue paramilitaries
It's promising back pay and pensions to ex-soldiers who were demobilized in the 90s without any. It's either that, it seems, or they might start signing up to a nascent but sinister-sounding paramilitary movement that's beginning to flex some muscle.
It's not clear where its loyalities lie, or if they're just up for rent.
In the meantime, Dispatches contributor Susanna Ferreira is with the former soldiers searching for a payday.
People in Instanbul enjoy the newly-revived Baklahorani Carnival. What was once a pagan Christian rite, has morphed into one of the few celebrations of Turkey's multi-cultural past and present. Dominant Turkish nationalism has made its organizers tread with caution. (Photo/Meghan MacIver)
Dancing to the tune of reconciliation
But now it seems, times are changing, ever so slightly.
Canadian journalist Meghan MacIver has found some Greeks and Turks dancing to the same tune at an unusual, and very historic party in Istanbul.
Resort push could shake Sri Lanka's new peace
Fishermen need the beach for their traditional method of stringing and bringing in nets from the shore rather than from boats. New resorts would displace them. Photo/Yasmeen Qureshi
The south Asian island of Sri Lanka is in a hurry to overcome its wartime past.
Just two years since the end of a long military confrontation, it plans to bung 17 resorts along one stretch of sandy shoreline.
But with developers pre-occupied with building a better beachfront, there's growing concern among those still fishing off it.
And the situation has echoes of the conflict only recently ended as we hear from Canadian journalist Yasmeen Qureshi, on the beach.
Produced with Lily Jamali in Sri Lanka.
Thanks to the CBC's Flavia Missier and Jeevan Pragasam for voicing the English translations in that report.
A view of Sara Gomez' apartment building (Left) in Mexico City. Inside, every wall seems slanted, the floors uneven. It's a victim of the widespread sinking of the city, due to the unstable earth below. (Photo/Myles Estey)
Inna Shevchenko (R) and Sasha (L) are the most prominent members of FEMEN, which uses female sexuality, including nudity, to demand women's rights in Ukraine and elsewhere in Europe. (REUTERS/Gleb Garanich)
Feminism laid bare in Ukraine
Except for a small and controversial group trying to revive them in the name of women's rights. Controversial, because they use their sexuality to gain attention.
They went topless at KGB headquarters. And the Vatican. This week one of them peeled off and grabbed the Euro 2012 soccer trophy. Anything to advance the cause. They put their half-naked bodies on the line, occasionally with brutal result.
But Dispatches contributor Saroja Coelho says some wonder just what their cause is, and went to see whether their tactics help or hurt it.
The picture that triggered a magnificent obsession
The introductions to our stories usually tip you to the key components of what's coming up but this one's going to be a little different, because this one's a yarn, as we used to say in St. John's.
A story that zigs and zags and asks you to lie back and enjoy a banquet of images crafted by a gifted storyteller.
All you need to know is it takes place in China, and involves two people who've never met. And yet they're about to have a reunion, all of it, set in motion by chance, and a picture.
Tibetan exiles dressed as Chinese soldiers enact the killing of a Tibetan student during a protest in Dharamsala, India, in January. Tibetans are debating the best way to protest Chinese rule, and whether self-immolation is justified. (Photo: AP/Angus McDonald)
People near Lukanga, DRC dig a trench that will divert water to provide electricity to their village. It was all planned and built without government help. Photo/Dennis Porter
Congo: the DIY State
If you want something done in the Democratic Republic of Congo, you've pretty much have to do it yourself.
It has some of the trappings of a state, but public services aren't one of them.
There are towns where you can't call a cop because the station has no phone.
Congo's holding elections at the end of this month. But after three decades of a dictatorship that taught looting by example, followed by a lingering civil war, its 70-million citizens aren't expecting much change from the top down.
No, in Congo change has to come from the ground up, as we hear from Canadian journalist Dennis Porter at the outdoor grocery store.
A lesson in insecurity
But Yemen, as it's known today, is anything but. Buffeted by rebellion and its own Arab Spring, political instability is on vivid display now that miltants have seized an entire province and sent its residents packing.
Today many live with the legacy of unrest that's driven them from their homes to refuge in distant schools where Canadian journalist Lindsay Mackenzie says the only lessons they learn, are the hard ones.
David Rocha finds wood for his instruments in vacant lots like this one in Villa Nova. (Photo: Lisa Hale)
From trash to musical treasure in Brazil
Peru's Bomberitos to the rescue
Bomberito means "little fireman" in Spanish and in the Andes Mountains of Peru groups of them use their homemade carretas to help stranded motorists and truckers along the highway. The tips they earn help them support their families. They often help out when there are fires and natural disasters as well.
Hevert (left) was a bomberito as a kid, helping rescue stranded motorists and victims of disasters. They get their carretas up the steep highway through the Andes by attaching ropes, or just their hands, to passing transport trucks. (Photos: Romi Burianova)
More on the film about the Bomberitos, The Little Firemen.
It was one of those dinner party stories that sticks in your head. A rumour about kids racing homemade carts high in the Andes, acting as first responders during accidents and disasters.
They have a catchy name. They're said to do dangerous work in a dangerous region.
But are they real? For Dispatches contributor Lori Chodos and a colleague, the voyage to find out was a story in itself.
Categories: Promo Box
|Radio One||Thursday 1 pm, 1:30 pm NT Sunday 7 pm, 8 pm AT and 8:30 pm NT|
|Sirius 137||Friday at Midnight & 9 am, Sunday at 10 pm|
- analysis Neil Macdonald: How serious is Obama about curbing the drone surge?
- In a key speech this week, the U.S. president set out a host of supposed new safeguards for America's controversial practice of remote-controlled rough justice. But as Neil Macdonald writes, the underlying rationale for drone use has not fundamentally changed.
- updated Friend of suspect in U.K. soldier's slaying arrested video
- Counterterrorism police are questioning a friend of Michael Adebolajo, one of two men suspected of the savage killing of a British soldier.
- 16 children, 1 teacher dead in Pakistan bus fire
- Police say 16 schoolchildren and a teacher burned to death in eastern Pakistan early today when a short-circuit near a leaking gas tank caused their minibus to be engulfed in flames.
- Growing appetite for American whisky straining supply
- Fans of some American whiskies might soon be scrambling to find their favourite brand because of a seemingly insatiable demand for bourbon, rye and other styles of whisky that shows no sign of abating.
- Ontario man lost in Australian mountains has survival skills video
- The sister of an Ontario man who disappeared in Australia's Snowy Mountains nearly two weeks ago says she remains hopeful he will be found, partly because of his training as a Canadian Forces reservist.