CAROL OFF: Hello, I'm Carol Off.
JEFF DOUGLAS: Good evening, I'm Jeff Douglas. This is As It Happens.
CO: Apparently it comes with being the territory. Donald Trump has publicly wondered when the expensive post-hurricane mess in Puerto Rico is going to end. Our guest explains the crisis may just be beginning.
JD: She survived — her mother, her siblings and her baby son were all murdered. The story of one Rohingya woman who barely escaped death in Myanmar as told by a reporter who met her in a refugee camp in Bangladesh.
CO: The director's cuts. Dozens of women have accused Harvey Weinstein of sexual assault and harassment, but actor Tippi Hedren reminds us such behavior is not new. She relates her experience with Alfred Hitchcock.
JD: Words speak louder than actions. The U.S. President stopped short of scrapping the Iran nuclear deal today but a player from the original talks says Trump's end game is clear from what he said.
CO: Boeing, Boeing gone. After nearly 50 years, the Boeing 747 is being retired from U.S. passenger flights. Tonight that pilot reminisces about his first time joining that particular mile high club — as a pilot, I mean.
JD: Meow. And… A snail’s peace. Jeremy the rare lefty snail, whose search for love became an international story, has died. But as we'll hear before his death the miserable seeming mollusk managed a little mating magic. As It Happens, The Friday edition. Radio that reflects, “Don't it always seem to go that you don't know what you've escar- got till it's escar-gone.
[Music: Theme]Back To Top »
Part 1: Puerto Rico latest, Trump Iran deal, Jeremy the Snail obit
Puerto Rico latest
Guest: Leo Gomez
JD: In Puerto Rico today people are still just barely hanging on. Most still don't have electricity and water, and food supplies are scarce. But in Washington, Donald Trump is already musing about when he should end federal help for the island. He tweeted that infrastructure on the island was already in bad shape before Hurricane Maria. And in another tweet he said that FEMA, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, cannot stay on the island forever. Hurricane Maria hit Puerto Rico just a little over three weeks ago. Leo Gomez lives in San Juan but he has been making regular trips outside the city to deliver water to family members who live about 50 kilometres away. We reached him in San Juan.
CO: Leo, can you give us an idea of how bad things are for people who are outside of San Juan.
LEO GOMEZ: Well, the reality is that things right now are worse out of San Juan than in San Juan. Water is not getting to population outside San Juan. And if it's getting there, it's by the private sector not necessarily the government. And also there is a food shortage in supermarkets. When you go to a supermarket, even big brands, you see all the food aisles empty.
CO: Now I know you've been making trips to this town of Manatí on the island's northern coast. Tell us what it's like there when you go?
LG: Well, yes Manatí is a coastal town. It’s 30 miles away from San Juan, which is the capital. I grew up there, my family is from there and I spent the hurricane there. Puerto Ricans are usually prepared for hurricanes. It's something that's usually normal here, but not this kind of catastrophe. After the first week went by all of the water and food that people had was finished, so people started getting anxious and desperate because they didn't find any food, either from government or from the usual supermarkets. So when you go to those towns people are very dehydrated. Even 20 days after the event you still find some cases like that. People are not getting food, medications and the basic attention that they need.
CO: You're taking water to them aren’t you? You're trying to get water to people. What are you doing to provide that?
LG: Yeah, so I usually spent 12 days in an office working. After Maria I spent 12 to 10 hours a day collecting containers, cleaning water, boiling it and filtering it, and just taking as much as I can and going down to Manatí and providing it to my family, to friends and to people that really needed in an urgent manner. I mean, I spent the first week there and it's terrible. You spend every second of the day looking at your reserves and wondering where is your next gallon of water coming from. So I understand the desperation and being in that place, I started doing trips from San Juan to Manatí and 30 miles might not seem much, but you have to remember there is no gas at all. So finding gas is one of the most prized commodities.
CO: And your family has your help and others maybe have other family in San Juan who can bring them things, but I know you've been to the refugee centre in Manatí. How are those people coping?
LG: Yeah, they don't get any drinking water. They can't even use bathroom facilities. The refugees were told to do their biologically in paper bags or in paint containers and just do threw them outside.
CO: And this is three weeks after Hurricane Maria and what, eighty per cent of part of Puerto Rico still without electricity — these are the conditions. What we're hearing from the United States is that they they say that the Federal Emergency Management Agency, FEMA, is on the ground and helping and doing their best. So what are you seeing of FEMA?
LG: I see a lot of bureaucracy. They're still in San Juan, they've half occupied all of the hotels in Puerto Rico. They’re at a hundred per cent occupancy right now and they're just not doing enough, and if they're doing it it's just not consistent. You can take two gallons one day to a family, but after that day they use it up and they don't have more. It's not consistent, it’s not planned, there's a lot of bureaucracy and they need to do more, they need to do better.
CO: We've heard from Donald Trump whose tweets have condemned the Puerto Ricans saying that they are not doing enough to help themselves. He has said that the problems predate Hurricane Maria, that the infrastructure was already in bad shape, and that and he claims that the United States is doing all it can and should do for Puerto Rico. What do you say to him?
LG: Those are very unfortunate expressions from from our president. It seems he doesn't understand the real needs and the real situation that is going on on the ground in Puerto Rico. We're citizens of the United States. They don't have food, they don't have water. Most don't have ceilings on their houses and their homes, and it's just very frustrating for us to listen to that. If we had a commander-in-chief that demonstrated attenttion and deployed resources accordingly, things would be a lot different by now.
CO: So what do you think is going to happen to people in Manatí if they don't get that help soon.
LG: Most of the population is going to move to a place where they can get their basic needs. The people that have more resources are going to go out of Puerto Rico.
CO: What about those who can't afford to move?
LG: That population is going to starve — they're going to be left there to die to be honest. Because the resources, right now, are not moving to these outside parts of San Juan.
CO: Your wife is about to give birth. Is there a hospital?
LG: My wife is giving birth in the next 48 hours. We're more than nine months of pregnancy. We're very concerned, the hospitals are not working at full capacity. I just learned that area hospital in Manatí doesn't have energy, they don't have electricity. The plant blew and the partsfor the generator take four days to get to Puerto Rico — it's going to be out of service. So what's going to happen? Where are people that have emergency going to go? So that's one example of a situation that I, as a father in the next few days, I'm very concerned about the conditions of the hospitals and if they're going to have the tools to handle and to get to manage the pregnancy properly.
CO: Well Leo I hope it goes all right. If she's overdue it's a bit worrisome, but I hope you're able to get some place, and that the birth is successful.
LG: Thank you so much.
CO: I appreciate you speaking with us. Thank you.
LG: All right. Thank you.
JD: We reached Leo Gomez in San Juan, Puerto Rico. And you can find more about this story on our website: www.cbc.ca/aih
[Music: Ambient Tones]
Trump Iran deal
Guest: Phil Robertson
JD: Donald Trump didn't kill the Iranian nuclear deal this afternoon but it sounded like he was coming close. The U.S. President announced that he was certifying the agreement and then he put both the U.S. Congress and his international allies on notice. Here's some of what he had to say.
PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: We will not continue down a path whose predictable conclusion is more violence, more terror and the very real threat of Iran's nuclear breakout. That is why I am directing my administration to work closely with Congress and our allies to address the deal's many serious flaws, so that the Iranian regime can never threaten the world with nuclear weapons. However, in the event we are not able to reach a solution working with Congress and our allies then the agreement will be terminated.
JD: That was U.S. President Donald Trump at the White House earlier today. Trita Parsi is the president of the Iranian American National Council. We reached him in Washington.
CO: Mr. Parsi, what does President Trump's disavowal of the Iran accord actually do. Is the deal in jeopardy?
TRITA PARSI: Of course. The deal is in jeopardy because he just triggered a process that eventually will lead to the deal being killed, as long as we follow Trump along on this process. Look at what he said. He wants Congress to make changes to that deal. First of all, no country can unilaterally make changes to the deal, that's a violation of the deal itself. But the specific changes that he's requesting are such changes that they are essentially poison pills. They would ensure that the deal collapses. And then he also said that if Congress doesn't do this he will terminate the deal. Meaning whichever path we go the deal will get killed. Unless of course, we decide not to go down this path with Mr. Trump, and that's a decision Congress can make and that's more importantly a decision Europe can make.
CO: At the same time his secretary of state, Rex Tillerson, is giving a different message, isn't he? He is talking about some kind of — without killing the deal that has been decided and agreed upon by European countries the United States and others — is that there should be some kind of a parallel deal, a parallel arrangement that would fix the the arrangement in ways that Mr. Trump wants without canceling the original deal. What do you think of that?
TP: No these are just clever ways of putting things in order to confuse people to think that he's actually not killing the deal. There is opportunity to after 10 or 15 years have an additional agreement. There's also an opportunity to have an additional agreement right now on other matters. But they could only be negotiated if Mr. Trump first, respects, honours and abides by the existing deal. He made it very clear today that he's going to kill that deal. His chances of being able to get an additional negotiation when he just started a process to kill the existing deal is essentially zero. No one takes him seriously. The Europeans know very well that if they agreed to any such renegotiation it will only lead to the deal's collapse, because that's what he has telegraphed for so long that he intends to do, and he did it again today at the White House.
CO: President Trump sort of gives the impression this deal is slapdash and ill conceived, what did it actually take in order to get?
TP: So I just published a book on the negotiations because I was there and I was advising the Obama administration and I also had access to the Iranians. As Federica Mogherini, the head of the foreign policy of the EU said, this took 12 years. And the most intense period of course, was the last two-and-a-half years, when they were both secret negotiations in Oman, and then the P5+1 process. This was one of the most intense negotiations that we have seen in the last two or three decades. The last phase of it, after several extensions of that deadline, John Kerry was stuck in Vienna, in Austria, for about 17 days doing essentially nothing but negotiating this deal. And other American diplomats and European diplomats and Iranian diplomats were there even longer. This was tremendously intense, probably the most intense negotiation that we have seen in the last two decades. The idea that we could go back, and that the other countries willingly would go back to start all over again is preposterous. We have finally managed to get a deal that actually is working. The Iranians are living up to it. The idea that we would kill that and go back to the situation we are currently in with North Korea only makes sense if you actually want to destroy the deal in order to move things towards a military confrontation.
CO: But what about some of the issues that the Trump administration is raising here? Concerning the sunset provisions. I mean, this is sort of central to especially Rex Tillerson is talking about, is that there is a countdown clock to when Iran can resume its nuclear program, that's a quote from Mr. Tillerson. Basically their chief concern is that Iran can return to its nuclear program at the end of when this deal expires and there's nothing to prevent that from happening. Are there are not reasons to be concerned that this deal doesn't go far enough?
TP: The most important aspect of this deal is permanent. The inspections and the verification regime of this deal will be ratified by the Iranians in year eight. Granted of course, that the United States has killed the deal by then, which then would mean that they will be permanent, they will never expire. And Iran cannot go back to the program we had before. It can only go back to a completely peaceful program. That's the best that absolutely can be achieved, and that's why this deal was unanimously adopted by the U.N. Security Council. And the only two or three countries that opposed the deal were Israel, Saudi Arabia and today also, the UAE.
CO: What do you think his objectives are — Mr. Trump's?
TP: I think it's difficult to completely be able to say what he is trying to achieve, mindful of the fact that logic seems to escape him. But of all the different things that we have seen I think two stand out. I think, to a very large extent, he has now completely outsourced his policy on Iran to Saudi Arabia. Even the talking points and some of the phraseology that was used in his speech today were copy/paste from Saudi statements. And from Saudi perspective having the United States come in and essentially balance Iran for Saudi Arabia makes perfect sense. The Saudis don't have the capacity to do so on their own and if the United States is willing to do so, why shouldn't the Saudis push for that. The other thing is that Donald Trump seems to really have a hard time certifying anything that was the achievement of Barack Obama, and that he is quite dead set on undoing everything that is associated with Barack Obama's legacy. Whether that is health care reform or whether that is the Iran nuclear deal.
CO: Iran's president has responded to Mr. Trump by threatening to ramp up their military efforts. How would you expect Iran's leaders to deal with Mr. Trump over the long term?
TP: Well again, it all depends on how the Europeans and other countries react. If they walk out of this deal then the Iranians will walk out of this deal as well. I suspect that their regional policy will harden significantly. They will essentially see the United States taking the first steps towards a military confrontation with Iran, which will then give the Iranians all the more incentives to have a tough policy in the region and potentially restarting the most sensitive aspects of a nuclear program that could be militarized — something that the Iranians have not been doing, at least, since 2003.
CO: All right we'll leave it there. Mr. Parsi, I appreciate speaking with you. Thank you.
TP: Thank you so much for having me.
JD: Trita Parsi is the president of the Iranian-American National Council. His book is called Losing An Enemy: Obama Iran and the Triumph of Diplomacy. We reached Mr. Parsi in Washington, DC.
[Music: Ambient Melody]
Jeremy the Snail obit
Guest: Angus Davison
JD: Regular As It Happens listeners, we have some news to share. Jeremy has died. And it's tempting to cite the old saying, “Death is nature's way of telling you to slow down,” except the Jeremy started slow and he never sped up. Jeremy was a snail. An unusual, genetically rare lefty snail, whose search for a partner went global. This week he was found dead by Angus Davison, the professor who cared for him. But the news is not all sad. He left a number of tiny legacies. We reached Angus Davison in Nottingham, England.
CO: Professor Davison, how did Jeremy die?
ANGUS DAVISON: I think Jeremy probably died of old age actually. Jeremy was at least two years old, and maybe five years old.
CO: How long had he been in your custody?
AD: It's almost a year to the day since we received Jeremy. In that whole year Jeremy has obviously become famous worldwide, and we have been trying to get Jeremy to produce offspring. So whilst it's sad that Jeremy has died, it’s also fantastic that finally we have some offspring and we can begin to do the genetics studies that we always hope to do with Jeremy.
CO: OK, I'm going to ask you about Jeremy's children in a moment, but let’s get our listeners who may — we’ve spoken with you a number of times —but maybe explain why Jeremy made headlines around the world, or perhaps why your efforts to help Jeremy made headlines?
AD: Jeremy is a really rare snail. If you look at garden snails, any snails that are common, they nearly all coil clockwise. Roughly speaking, about one-in-a-million, one-in-a-hundred-thousand maybe, snails coils the other way. Their shells coil leftwards or as he’s called locally, a lefty. So I'm an evolutionary biologist and I want to know why that is. The problem is snails have their genitals oddly on the side of their head. And on one side of their if you’ve got a very rare lefty snail, actually it can’t mate with other snails. So we launched, essentially, a campaign. First via the BBC in Britain, but then it really rapidly went worldwide, to try and find a mate for Jeremy.
CO: And I know people in Canada, our listeners were all in their gardens on their hands and knees trying to find Jeremy a mate. How many mates did people actually find and send to you for Jeremy?
AD: In the end we have six other snails of this same type that coil the wrong way. Within a couple of weeks we found two. One was collected by a snail enthusiast and in Britain, and the other one came from a snail farm in New York. More recently we've actually got four from a single snail farm in Spain.
CO: So Jeremy did find a mate and did mate? Did he mate with all of them or one of them or what? Was he monogamous?
AD: Before hearing of Jeremy's death the other thing people might have heard of — so we had Jeremy and then we amazingly got these two of the snails potentially Jerry to mate with — and of course the great irony is these two potential mates that we got for Jeremy mated with each other.
AD: My favourite headline was, ‘It was a gastropod love triangle tragedy,’ so they mated with each other and they produced offspring, which as the geneticist involved in this, it doesn't actually matter, I want them all to produce offspring, but if some of them do that's great. But I did persist trying to get Jeremy to mate, and so what actually happened is Jeremy mated with one of these of the Spanish snails eventually, actually made it three times that I observed, when I was really was beginning to despair because their offspring were being produced. Finally a couple of weeks ago we had some offspring with Jeremy as the father of the other snail as the mother, because remember they’re hermaphrodite.
CO: So on Friday Jeremy had some offspring. Tell us about them?
AD: I was away on field work and I came back on Thursday and I checked the babies, which I knew to be there on Friday to see if it hatched and they had. I was really happy that's great, we had finally done it. And so the scientist in me at that point should have thought well, “OK we now have offspring from Jeremy. That's the legacy. That's what we can do the genetics with.” I should actually have frozen Jeremy at that point, so we can preserve Jeremy you can preserve Jeremy's DNA in particular. But the non-scientist in me I suppose hesitated and thought, “But what about all the people that are going to be disappointed when they hear that not only has Jeremy died, that Jeremy has died by his scientist's hand? So I didn't and I regret that because it was a mistake, because then when I next checked on Wednesday Jeremy had died and I died a couple of days previously. Snails degrade quite quickly, and so the DNA, the genetic material of Jeremy was already quite degraded and will be difficult to use.
CO: So you're sorry you didn't freeze Jeremy when he was alive?
AD: Yeah, I should have. We've got to remember this is about understanding genetics so, yeah, as a scientist we sometimes have to do these things.
CO: Now the question about Jeremy's children — which way they lean? Are they left or right?
AD: No they’re right and that's exactly what we'd expect based upon the genetics. The way the gene is inherited we probably think — well if it's inherited in this case — the mother, and the mother in this case was the Spanish snail. Now the mother is probably what we call the heterozygotes, it has two copies of the gene. So what we're going to have to do actually, is breed the offspring of Jeremy’s children and maybe even the offspring of those before we might we might see some other lefties. So this thing that we kind of began in kind of sort of lighthearted way we can talk about science, this is going to be good fun, we got but that's surprising we got these. We’re now committed to seeing this through for several years, so we might go quiet on the Jeremy the Snail front in terms of the science, but we will be working away in the background.
CO: I think I can say with confidence that though we've done a lot of obituaries on As It Happens, I think this is probably our first snail obit.
AD: Yeah, that's crazy.
CO: How will you remember Jeremy?
AD: I mean, I wouldn't go as far as to say he had a character but Jeremy was a bit unusual. Jeremy’s quite small, Jeremy’s quite dark-shelled and Jeremy also had a peculiar problem with his tentacle, one of the tentacles didn't extend properly. So you know certainly a different snail. Added to all of that Jeremy is left coiling snail. It's not exaggeration to say that Jeremy is probably the most famous snail in the world, and probably will continue to be for quite a while.
CO: Well it would make a great children's story if it wasn't X-rated.
AD: I know, you’re right. Well, you can leave out the X-rated bits maybe.
AD: There is all that stuff where they stab so called love darts into each other when they're mating. Actually the person who knows most about love darts is a Canadian scientist who worked on them for, I would say about 20 years. So actually a lot of what we know about the use of love darts.
CO: We have a Canadian specialist and loved darts?
AD: Yeah, we do. I'm sure he’d happily speak to you if you wish I'll patch you in with the details.
CO:I love that.
AD: he’s retired but he still knows a lot about them.
CO: Mr. Davison it's great to speak with you and it’s probably our last time we will talk.
AD: You think?
CO: Unless you can top this one.
AD: We’ll see.
CO: We'll see. Take care. Thank you.
JD: Never say never. Angus Davison is an associate professor of evolutionary genetics at the University of Nottingham, and that is where we reached him. And if you'd like to see some photographs of Jeremy and his tiny little babies visit our website: www.cbc.ca/aihBack To Top »
Part 2: Rohingya reporter, Boeing 747 pilot
Guest: Jeffrey Gettleman
JD: Human rights investigators estimate that Myanmar's military has killed more than a thousand civilians in Rakhine state — maybe even as many as 5000. A young woman named Rajuma is a survivor of the atrocities there. She is the only person in her family who made it out of their village alive. She is now living in a refugee camp in Bangladesh along with hundreds-of-thousands of other Rohingya refugees. It was there that she told her story to Jeffrey Gettleman South Asia bureau chief for The New York Times. We reached Mr. Gettleman in Delhi India, and a warning to our listeners. This interview contains disturbing descriptions of violence.
CO: Jeffrey, reading your account of what's happened to the Rohingya is almost unbearable. And we have warned our listeners about what they're going to hear in this interview. Can you tell us the story of this young woman Rajuma? How did you meet her?
JEFFREY GETTLEMAN: Yeah, I've been working on conflict stories for the past 20 years and I have never conducted such an upsetting and depressing and infuriating interview with anybody. I met this woman in Rajuma, who is a Rohingya refugee, in Bangladesh last week. She had fled a village that had come under attack by the government — the army. And she described in great detail atrocities that were inflicted upon her and her family and hundreds of people around her. And I corroborated everything that she told me. And I have no doubt that she experienced this.
CO: Can you start with the morning that she knew something was happening, when she was in her village. What was the first sign that things were going to happen?
JG: Rajuma told me that she woke up in the morning and she looked out the window and she saw dozens of government soldiers driving into her village. They started to set the house on fire one-by-one. Rajuma and her family panicked and they ran out of their house but they were quickly captured. She told us that the soldiers then separated and the women and executed all the men on the spot. They then made these women and girls stand in a river and they selected the girls to be raped. And Rajuma happened to have a one-and-a-half-year-old boy in her arms. And the soldiers ripped the boy out of her arms and threw him into a fire, right in front of Rajuma. And at this point in the story she stopped and seemed almost too upset to continue, but I felt like it was important to capture what had really happened there. And these refugees are only sources of that information, because no journalist are allowed to go into this part of Myanmar. So she said that after her son was killed right in front of her eyes she was gang raped and then left in a house that was set on fire, and she woke up smelling smoke and sprinted out of the house —covered in blood, all alone. She hid in a field for several hours, found some clothes, and then kept running. She said that over the next few days she was by herself running through the wilderness of western Myanmar, and slowly more people came to join her from other burning villages. About a week later she made it to the Bangladesh border and then into a refugee camp where she is now staying and where I met her. She seemed totally traumatized and deeply disturbed. I felt very helpless listening to this account and working at the story, because there was nothing anybody can do for her.
CO: Now that she's in Bangladesh, in the refugee camps, what are the conditions in which she's living? Who can care for her? Who can counsel her — if anyone?
JG: It's really bad. These camps have popped up overnight. Five-hundred-thousand people living on a muddy hillside beneath plastic sheets held up by bamboo poles. Maybe 10 or 15 people under one little shelter. And there's there's not that much aid or relief coming to these camps. It was a very disorganized effort that I've seen, with different small aid organizations passing out biscuits or bags of rice. Sometimes it was raining incredibly hard like a hurricane, just sheets are falling down and people hiding under these plastic sheets trying to stay dry.
CO: The reports are that there are — and this is one story Rajuma — and the atrocities that you have reported there’s just so many of them. Every single person has a story of something — a million Rohingya have now fled Myanmar looking for some sort of shelter. Is there any way of going back? You were saying that Rajuma doesn't have anything, not a piece of paper, not anything to document who she is or where she belongs. She appears to be completely stateless.
JG: She is. And there was a pattern to these accounts that I was hearing. I talked to dozens of people. You walk into these camps and you meet hundreds of people who crowd around who are serious about what happened to them, and are deeply traumatized and want somebody to listen. And then you go to a different camp a couple of miles away that has no contact with the first place, and you hear the same type of stories — that this government army went on a rampage and was intentionally trying to kill civilians. It wasn't just a counterinsurgency campaign, because there is an insurgency in this area, but that seems to be the pretext to just have a murder spree on these people.
CO: So the Myanmar soldiers have not just killed these people, they've burned their villages to the ground, every last stick. Again, a textbook case of ethnic cleansing, violated them to such a degree that they can never find their home again, they lose their identity. We've seen this before. You've covered this before. Have you ever seen a situation like this in your coverage before?
JG: I've never seen a situation like this. I covered some horrible stories in Congo, Somalia and Darfur, Sudan. But what was so bad about this is that these people are getting no help, and they had such a low status in their own country that enabled this brutality. These are people who have been demonized, and dehumanized, generation after generation, and left totally powerless. And we’re shocked to hear that they were brutalized the way they were in the past few weeks — but it’s been going on for a long time. And I just can't think of another case of people that have nowhere to run. They're barely tolerated in Bangladesh and their own country doesn't want them back.
CO: Jeffrey, I appreciate speaking with you. It's deeply disturbing, but thank you for your reporting on this.
JG: Listen I think it's upsetting material but we should know about it. These people suffered a lot, and it would be a further injustice just to turn back to it. So thank you.
CO: Jeffrey Gettleman is the South Asia bureau chief for The New York Times. We reached him in Delhi.
[Music: Ambient Tones]
JD: Alex Trebek usually asks Jeopardy contestants about science, pop music, potent potables, maybe something about U.S. presidents. Questions about Inuit harpoons are not regular occurrences — until last night. In May, the president of Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, the Canadian Inuit organization spoke with Mr. Trebek about incorporating the Inuit culture into jeopardy. Last night a new category called “The Inuit” made its debut. Here's a clip.
ALEX TREBEK: Here are the categories for you players. Starting off with the Inuit, the first peoples in the Arctic.
AT: As far back as 3000 B.C. on this type of weapon, the Inuit use the toggle head seen here. It rotates to stay in the whale. Sean?
CONTESTANT: What is a harpoon?
AT: Harpoon. Good.
AT: Vital in the dark winter, the qulliq is traditionally fueled by the oil of this animal whose skin and bones were also key resources. Austin?
CONTESTANT: What is the whale?
AT: No. Sean?
CONTESTANT: What is a seal?
AT: Seal, you got it.
CONTESTANT: Inuit eight.
AT: The creation of this Canadian territory in 1999 allowed the Inuit to be in charge of their cultural and political destiny. Austin?
CONTESTANT: What is Nunavut?
CONTESTANT: Inuit 1000.
AT: The answer there happens to be the daily double. It’s a video.
CONTESTANT: 1400 please.
AT: All right, that will put you close to the lead. Here we go. Inuit sculpture is in high demand, a favourite subject is this beloved 500-plus-pound creature of their homelands.
CONTESTANT: What is a yak?
AT: It's like a yak, it's a muskox, my favourite animal. All right, that drops you down to zero, which means we're going to take a break. We'll come back after this.
JD: That was a clip from last night's episode of Jeopardy when the Inuit category made its debut.
[Music: Ambient Keyboard]
Boeing 747 pilot
Guest: Mark Vanhoenacker
JD: The Boeing 747 is flying off into the sunset — at least where American passenger travel is concerned. The iconic aircraft is being retired this year. The first 747 took flight in 1969, and the jumbo has been making long haul flights ever since. Mark Vanhoenacker flies the Boeing 747 for British Airways and this week the New York Times published his tender tribute to the plane. We reached Mr. Vanhoenacker in New York City.
CO: Mark, When did your love affair with the Boeing 747 begin?
MARK VANHOENACKER: Well, I think it started when I was a kid. I grew up in in western Massachusetts and I was obsessed with airplanes. On my desk at home I had a big light globe and I had lots of airplane models and they were you know mostly 747s. And then occasionally we would drive down to Kennedy Airport to pick up relatives, andI would see these 747 tails all around me, mostly Pan Am in those days, and they just looked like a dream to me ,they looked like everything I wanted or everything I dreamed I might someday have as a pilot. That sense of spanning the world and connecting far off places with this really beautiful machine, and pilots often joke that we're on really good terms with our inner children and my inner child is definitely still looking up at a 747.
CO: Well, you know, it's interesting you point that out, because we board these planes, these massive planes but we just go down a ramp and cross over we get into it. You can’t feel the size of it unless you’re on the ground, and for a boy, especially then when is the first of these massive planes, it must have been — well the tail is like tall as a building.
MV: Yeah, yeah. And the 747 was I mean initially why it was so famous was that it was so large. It was two-and-a-half times bigger than its predecessors. The length of the plane is nearly twice the length of the first flight of the Wright Brothers, which certainly puts it in perspective. And it was considered a liner almost in the ocean liner sense of the term — it really was a scale change in air travel, and that's initially the sort it was so famous for.
CO: What was your first flight? What was the first time — were you flying as a kid? Did you get on and actually take a trip in a 747?
MV: The very first time that I can remember flying on a 747 was a flight from Kennedy Airport to Amsterdam. And I remember everything about that flight. I was I was 14. I was in seat 33A.
CO: You remember the seat number?
MV: I remember the seat number. You know, I probably felt the boarding pass somewhere in a box of children’s belongings. And one of the other reasons I remember it, probably, is that it was the first time I flew with a Walkman. I'm probably dating myself now, but it was the first time I listened to music while flying. And there was something about, you know, listening to music on my headphones while taking off and landing. And that was somehow tied with the sort of romance and the majesty of that 747. I remember the wings just being, I mean, when you're in a window seat and you look out at those wings and it's 100 feet of shining metal that's holding you up, it's an amazing thing to see, especially when you're a kid who might someday want to be a pilot.
CO: And I think for, I mean, for passengers it's a lot of them kids, adults, everyone feels that thrill. But what was it like to actually be in the cockpit and be hurtling down the runway and flying one of those birds?
MV: Well, that's the flight I remember pretty much as well as I did at first flight as a passenger. It was a flight from London, Heathrow Hong Kong in 2007. And obviously we had done plenty of training for it in the flight simulators, but of course, when you're doing it for real it's just unbelievable. And the sense of power, I mean, there's something about the 747 engines where at their highest power setting they actually seem to get a little quieter, its something you feel more than hear. And as we went down the runway and lift it off that little kid in me was — I'm sure he had a big smile on his face. That's the highlight of my career for sure.
CO: Well it was absolutely a game changer wasn't it — for travel? And it also started turning up in popular culture you didn't it? There's songs about that plane.
MV: Yeah, the plane is so stuck in the popular imagination that it migrated into all sorts of other realms of culture. The musical I mean, you could have a very long 747 playlist. Tom Petty, and The Pet Shop boys, and Iron Maiden, and Earth Wind and Fire, and Prince and Joni Mitchell, of course. She has a song called Amelia, which is actually one of my favorite songs, but it mentions the 747.
CO: And now you had a 747 even featured at your wedding.
MV: Yes it did. The cake was a 747 shaped cake, which required a little extra discussion with the baker. But that that almost symbolizes how innate the 747 is in our culture, because I didn't even have to specify that it was a plane or a Boeing. I mean, you just say those numbers and people know what you mean. I just saw a few weeks ago there was a Game Of Thrones producer who was describing the size of the dragons in the show, and he described them as lizards the size of a 747. And you know, whether you're talking about a wedding cake or a dragon in a contemporary TV show or a Joni Mitchell song, everyone knows what those numbers mean. And I think that'll change even as the plane slowly moves into retirement.
CO: And that's what's happening isn’t it? I mean, this analogy of things to a 747 will not mean anything to kids in future generations. Why are they retiring the plane? Why are passenger planes being retired?
MV: The passenger planes will still be flying with a number of airlines. But at the end of the day I think that twin engine planes have greater efficiencies, and the plane I hope to fly next, the Boeing 787 Dreamliner, is as revolutionary now as the 747 was in its day. It has a lot of features that kind of reopen the experience of flying to passengers in terms of — it has much larger windows for example. So hopefully plans like that will reinvigorate the experience of flying for a new generation of passengers and pilots. But I think it's fair to say there won't be anything like the 747 again. It was the plane that changed the world. And I feel very, very grateful that I had a chance to fly it.
CO: Just briefly about the 787, you mentioned the big attraction there is that is more fuel efficient, it's less noisy and it doesn't pollute as much, and now you get tariffs for the amount of pollution you have when you're landing and taking off. So that's the future isn't it? I mean trying to get to a plane that has all those features.
MV: Yeah, yeah. And with the 787, I have some some friends who fly it, and the flight deck looks like something out of Star Trek. It's a revolutionary aircraft, and it has a lot of technologies that make flying more comfortable. And also as a kid who had his face pressed to the window of a lot of planes, I wouldn't underestimate the importance of those larger windows. It means that the experience of flight is what we're actually getting to see when we're up there is opened again for the little kids and not-so-little kids that might be of having a chance to look out the window.
CO: Well, it brings out the kid in all of us. Mark it's good to talk to you. Thank you.
MV: Thank you very much.
JD: Mark Vanhoenacker is a senior first officer with British Airways and the author of Skyfaring: A Journey with a Pilot Mr. Vanhoenacker in New York City.
[Music: Strings and Chimes]
Listener response: Labrador time
JD: Last night we incriminated thousands of Labradorians on air. James McLeod a reporter with the telegram told us that for decades the majority of people in Labrador had been unknowingly breaking the law by setting their clocks to Atlantic time instead of Newfoundland's usual half hour time zone. Well thankfully, after that interview many of you wrote to us eager to clarify the law, and to help the good people of Labrador kick their illegal clock setting habit.
CO: Susan Felsberg in Happy Valley, Goose Bay wrote: Most of Labrador is designed to be in the Atlantic time zone, as you reported correctly, the exception is south east Labrador, south of Black Tickle, which is in Newfoundland's half hour zone. However, Quebec is in the eastern zone, so therefore, when crossing the border from South Labrador to Quebec at Blanc Sablon, the time difference is one-and-a-half-hours. And the ferry sails daily back and forth between Blanc Sablon, Quebec and St. Barbe Newfoundland on Newfoundland time. Go figure.
JD: Is nothing cut and dry?
CO: I thought that was pretty clear, no.
JD: Yeah, yeah. It's a rather rudimentary actually, but to clear up any doubt, here's another timely breakdown of the temporal math from a listener on our Talkback line. You may want to grab your protector and compass.
DAVE FELL: Hey, how are you doing? It’s Dave Fell from Kincardine, Ontario. I think your man’s got some facts kind of not exactly right. The half-an-hour difference times in timezones on goes back to colonial times. They set the clocks at that time because fifty-two-and-a-half degree latitude passes through St. John. The convention with time zones is that every 15 degrees represents one hour of time zone. So because it was off by itself fifty-two-and-a-half degrees is half an hour. The east side of the time zone is where the time zone starts and it goes to the west 15 degrees longitude. So it’s Quebec and Labrador really out of whack. Well, Labrador is not as bad by wanting to be with Atlantic Canada, but Quebec when you think about it, you don't get to 75 degrees, which is where you should go to Eastern Standard Time until almost over to Montreal. Just an interesting thing to think about.
JD: Mr. Fell, it's too much to think about, but thank you. It's amazing Carol, what people know.
CO: It's crystal clear for me, now, I think.
JD: Oh, yeah me too. Well thanks everyone who called and wrote in. You can find our full interview with James McLeod to learn more. And if you want to learn more about Newfoundland’s quirky time zones it's all on our website: www.cbc.ca/aih. You can also find us on Facebook or Twitter both those accounts CBC As It Happens. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org or you can phone us for (416) 205-5687. As It Happens airs weekly on CBC Radio 1 at 6:30 p.m. and for a law abiding Labradorians that’s at 7 p.m. Newfoundland time.Back To Top »
Part 3: Tippi Hedren on harassment, one man show, Che stamp
Tippi Hedren on harassment
Guest: Tippi Hedren
JD: The list of Harvey Weinstein accusers continues to grow. So far more than 30 women have come forward with allegations of sexual harassment, of sexual assault, of rape against the American film producer. And the stories paint a picture of an untouchable. Of a Hollywood mogul who had the power to make or break careers, and to 87 year old Hollywood actress Tippi Hedren, the stories are all too familiar, because they remind her of another Hollywood icon. Alfred Hitchcock directed The Birds and Marnie, both of which Ms. Hedren starred in. In her new memoir Tippi, the actress says Mr. Hitchcock assaulted, her harassed, her and threatened her during filming. We reached Tippi Hedren in Acton, California.
CO: Ms. Hedren, what's it like for you to hear so many women in Hollywood coming forward with allegations against Harvey Weinstein?
TIPPI HEDREN: Well, you know this this kind of situation is as old as Adam and Eve. It's been going on forever. And I'm I'm delighted that the attention is being brought on to this subject, because every young woman has to know that she does not have to put up with this in any way, shape or form.
CO: And given that so many have put up with it — some of them recently, or this is the allegation — and that they're young women who were born in the time that that was considered liberated. Why do you think so many of them did go along with it? Why were they so afraid to bring these complaints forward?
TH: I don't, I don't know, I wish I could answer that. My saving grace was my parents, who taught me morals, and brought me up in the Lutheran church. I heard values that people had and how important those values are, and your own emotional strength. And I'm very, very grateful for that kind of thing and I'm very, very grateful for my parents teaching my sister and me how life should be — that you don't have to be talked into anything you are not willing to do.
CO: This week you have been comparing these stories of Harvey Weinstein to your own experience working with the director Alfred Hitchcock. Can you tell us about that?
TH: Well, you know, that was very short lived, because I said, “If this is going to be I'm walking out.” Attempts were made to have me go into situations that I was not comfortable in doing, and nor did I want to. This unfortunately happens to a lot of young girls are older women as well. It doesn't — there's no age limit to it really, which is horrific at the time. And the thing that I can tell you is that when you say no and you walk out in that situation you are going to feel like you own the world.
CO: Go back to some of your own experiences. What was the first time that Alfred Hitchcock made advances on you?
TH: Well it was the once and the last time. He made advances towards me and I just said, “Wait, wait, just back off here. Just stop it.”
CO: This is during the time you were filming The Birds?
TH: It was Marnie. It was Marnie when this happened.
CO: But it began at one point and then it continued during the time you were filming Marnie did it not?
TH: No, you know what it was? It was a constant, constant staring at me, watching me and you know when somebody pulls that on you and they’re watching you every minute it becomes very disconcerting and very annoying. And the whole crew noticed that this whole thing was going on — what Hitch attempting to turn it around to being. And it was an embarrassment to me, I hated it. I was under contract to him and I did at one point say, “I will walk out.” Then it stopped.
CO: In your book you allege — well, a sexual assault. He tried to kiss you and grab you. Is that true?
TH: Well he did. And that's when I said, “No, no, this isn't going to happen.”
CO: What effect did that have on your career?
TH: Nothing. And I don't care if he did have my career in his hands, I still would have said no.
CO: In your memoir, Tippi, you write. “I was just a lucky little blonde model he had rescued from relative obscurity.” Did you feel that he had that he made your career?
TH: I think he contributed to it. I think he certainly did. Putting me in two major motion pictures, yes.
CO: Do you know if he had this behavior toward other women?
TH: That’s something I don't know. I never inquired about that. I know that wasn't any of my business. But as far as I was concerned that was not going to be a part of my life.
CO: So how prevalent do you think this kind of behavior was in Hollywood?
TH: Well, you know something, it doesn’t it just stay in the boundaries of Hollywood. It's in every, every business, every phase of life. It happens, it isn't just in Hollywood.
CO: Do you think these allegations against Mr. Weinstein mark a shift where we'll see how women are treated in Hollywood?
TH: I don't know that it will make a difference in how they're treated, but I think they should take a lesson from this. None of these girls or women have to put up with any of that.
CO: All right we'll leave it there. Ms Hedren, thank you.
TH: You’re welcome.
JD: Tippi Hedren starred in Alfred Hitchcock's The Birds and Marnie. We reached turn Acton, California.
[Music: Jazz Bass & Keys]
Captain William Jackman
JD: The year was 1867. An October hurricane was battering the southern shore of Newfoundland’s Avalon Peninsula and the Sea clipper and its passengers were in trouble. Captain William Jackman became a hero that day. He swam from the shore of Spotted Island, Labrador to the Sea Clipper nearly 200 metres in rough, cold water 27 times — each time carrying another person to safety. One-hundred-and-fifty years later the people of Renews, Newfoundland, where he was born, are looking to remember Captain Jackman, and that is why Glen Jackman, the captain's third cousin has created a heritage society with a plan to install a monument in the captain's place of birth. Mr. Jackman spoke with the CBC's Chris O'Neill-Yates about his relatives’ heroic feat. Here's part of that conversation.
GLEN JACKMAN: It’s incredible to the point of challenging credibility. But the fact is, it did happen and it's well-documented.
CHRIS O’NEILL-YATES: To people in this harbour, do many of them know of him or what he has done what he's famous for? Or is it something that's more part of legend and not really something that people understand — they may know the name but they probably don't know much about him.
GJ: I don't think people know very much about him — in our community or even throughout Newfoundland & Labrador, which is really a shame.
COY: So what is your dream to change that?
GJ: Well, we are going to change that. We are going to build this monument and we're inviting everybody to help us with that. It will be easier if we get more people, obviously, to help us with that upfront. But it's going to happen. We're very confident, Mike and I, that this is going to happen. And in the course of building this monument we will educate Newfoundlanders and Labradorians and Canadians and the world basically, about the heroics of this incredible individual. And these heroics are basically — could be unmatched I think. If you think about about what this man did, it's possible that this could be the most heroic act by an individual in Newfoundland & Labrador in the history of the Newfoundland & Labrador, and possibly Canada.
COY: I can't think of a modern day example where somebody went out 600 feet or whatever from a raging ocean and swam back and forth and saved people. I don't know of another example if somebody did that today it would be worldwide news — it would be incredible.
GJ: Without question. And this is where I think — and I bristle at this sometimes — when people begin to question what happened there. But it's very clear, it's documented in articles as much as a month after the event. Exactly those details that you just described — 27 times, 11 times by himself, without any aid. 600 feet and subsequently 16 times with a rope tied around him, which did help in coming back but didn't help him going out. It's well documented, the British Humane Society screened it and gave that their approval and awarded him their highest honour.
JD: That’s Glen Jackman in conversation with CBC's Chris O'Neill-Yates . Mr. Jackman is the third cousin of the 19th century hero Captain William Jackman. They were speaking and Renews, Newfoundland.
[Music: Ambient Tones & Bass]
One man show
Guest: David Greenspan
JD: Performing in Eugene O'Neill’s Strange Interlude is a Herculean effort. 9 acts, roughly five hours of performance time, and then there is the dialogue. Characters don't only say the words that they say, that they speak, they also say the words that they think — it is difficult, it is very difficult. So why would actor David Greenspan decide to take the challenge of Strange Interlude to a whole new level of exhaustion? Why would someone do that to themselves? We're going to ask him. We reached David Greenspan in New York City.
CO: David, first off tell us the names of the characters you are playing in this production of Strange Interlude.
DAVID GREENSPAN: Sure. The first is Nina Leeds, the next is her Father Professor Leeds. Then there's Sam Evans and he becomes Nina's husband, so she becomes Nina Leeds-Evans. Then there's Ned Darrell who becomes Nina's lover. There is Charlie Marsden, who is an old friend of Nina's, he's slightly older than her. Then there's Sam's mother Mrs. Evans. Then there is Nina's son Gordon, and he would normally be represented by two actors, a young boy in one act, and then by a young adult in the last act. And then there's Gordon's fiance Madeleine and that rounds it out.
CO: So that's, one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine?
DG: Yeah, really eight characters because one is represented by two actors given the change in age over the years.
CO: And if I understand the Strange Interlude, it's not just that there's dialogue between all these characters you play. There's actually internal monologues, when they talk about what they're thinking.
DG: Yes. They're almost like aside in a way. They're not stream of consciousness monologues as you would find say, in Joyce, or other writers. So they're almost like long asides in a way.
CO: Are you doing any costume changes?
DG: Nope. I stay one cost them the whole time. The only costume change is I take off my jacket at one point and put it back on, that's the only change.
CO: But this play is five hours long.
DG: Well, at the pace I'm playing it, it's set 4:35. And it's kind of a six hour event because there is a dinner break and there are two intermissions. So it's a little under six hours for the audience to be with us.
CO: And then for you to be with the play. And David how do you commit that much text to memory?
DG: Repetition, you know, it took a long time. We've been working on the project from the first conception of it for about four years. And I would go away and on my own, often in my apartment with my dog and my cat, I would learn the lines with the blocking. So that when I came back for the next workshop, next rehearsal, I'd have the first act down, then I go away and learn the second act, and I just went all the way through until I had all nine acts. There's a lot of repetition, there’s of a lot of time. I would work four hours a day, five days a week.
CO: Are you flubbing lines? Do you have times when you just can't do it?
DG: No. There's no train wrecks. Everything is fine, but there when an “a” will come out as opposed to a “the” and things like that. And whenever I make a little mistake I know it.
CO: Now is this just to save money that's one actor does it all? I mean, what is it you want to get across to the audience about this play?
DG: I always loved this play. I saw Glenda Jackson perform Nina Leeds in 1985 and Edward Petherbridge was Charles Marsden and it was a beautiful production, it came from England, I saw it in New York. And I always loved the play and it was memorable. And I've used inner monologues in my own plays and there's intense family drama, which interests me. With one actor playing the part, we soon realized this, that when it's normally played the actors who aren't speaking their inner thoughts have to have a soft freeze, have to hold still so that the attention stays on the actor who's speaking, but that he or she is not at that point in conversation. And by having one actor do it you never have to move your eye, you never have to get distracted because you're only watching one person. And I think it's turned out to be a very legitimate approach to this play.
CO: You have to move to both male and female characters, age differences from the older people to a child. What do you do with your voice?
DG: I make subtle changes in my voice, both in inflection and also in pitch. And certainly for the young Gordon, for the child, I try to affect the sound of a boy. But to help the audience additionally I have certain postures and certain hand gestures that hopefully rather soon, let the audience know for sure who I am. There are just certain postures and behaviors and I think from what we've been hearing from our audiences they're very clear not only about who's speaking but, who is speaking in inner monologue as opposed to conversation. All the work has really paid off rather nicely.
CO: Didn't Groucho Marx do send up on this play?
DG: I think it was in the Animal Crackers where he would turn to the camera at certain points and say I've got to take a strange interlude.
CO: And then he'd start monologuing what he was thinking.
CO: How many performances will you do of a Strange Interlude?
DG: At this point there's 20 total but if there is demand we're going to add additional days during the week.
CO: Well, best of luck to you it sounds fascinating. Thanks David.
DG: Thanks so much for having me.
JD: We reached David Greenspan in New York.
[Music: Jazz Band]
Guest: Jim Fitzpatrick
JD: This week marks the 50th anniversary of the death of Ernesto Che Guevara. And to mark the occasion Ireland has issued a commemorative stamp in his honour, which not everyone is commemorating. The stamp has angered some Cubans in Miami who say that they are still feeling the effects of the revolution. Now the Irish connection is no coincidence. Che's father was of Irish descent, and so is the artist who created that iconic red and black poster of El Che. That's the one that you have seen on t shirts and that campus poster sales, and that is the same image that will appear on the stamp. That artist is Jim Fitzpatrick. And we have reached him in Howth, Ireland.
CO: Mr. Fitzpatrick, how does it feel to have your art featured on this commemorative stamp?
JIM FITZPATRICK: Extraordinary. It's a huge honour for me to be on the stamp of my country with my image as a work of art.
CO: And just for people who don't know, maybe describe what is Che Guevara's family the connection to Ireland.
JF: I met him when I was a very young man working in a bar and Kilkee in County Clare and he startled me by telling me he was Irish. I thought he was Cuban at that point. I have to be honest. and realize he was Argentinean and Irish. His father was Guevara-Lynch and very proud to be an Irish with Basque blood and Irish blood, but he was more proud of the Irish blood because it was more fun.
CO: Lynch —where does that what does that go back to in Ireland? How far does it go back?
JF: Lynches are ne of the wild tribes of Ireland, on the far west of Ireland. They ruled quite a considerable amount of territory. Their name in Irish is O'Loinsigh and it's Anglicised into Lynch.
CO:When did their family — when did Che Guevara's family move to I guess to Argentina?
JF: Well, according to his brothe,r who I saw in an interview only recently like yesterday, the family came via the gold rush in California, where Isabel Lynch married into the Guevara's in California before they moved to Argentina. There’s a huge Irish diaspora in Argentina as well, don't forget.
CO: Do people in Ireland know this connection to Che Guevara?
JF: Everybody I think knows this at this point.
CO: And what does he represent — what does Che Guevara symbolize to people in Ireland?
JF: Well, to people in Ireland, I can't talk for the people of Ireland, but certainly an idealized rebel from another era, who sacrificed himself and he could have sat quite comfortably in Cuba as governor of the bank of Cuba, which he was and collected a huge pension, which most of the fat cats who ruined our country and this country do to this day. He's a symbol there’s no doubt about that. He’s a universal symbol. You have to remember this is a country also that has deep sympathies and ties with Palestine. So we're a bit the other side of the track for a lot of people. We've always been a rebellious people. We fought against it all for independence in our country, and we have a long history of rebellion. And Che symbolizes that in many ways I suppose.
CO: What he's come to symbolize and what he was are sometimes considered different things aren’t they? I mean, you can see him as a romantic symbol of counter-revolution and counterculture. Or you can see him, as many do, as a violent idealogue who summarily executed people. How do you reconcile those two?
JF: He was no saint, and those figures are grossly exaggerated. There’s a black propaganda campaign being run out there very effectively for the last 10 to 20 years.
CO: But he did execute people.
JF: He executed a rapist, which is clearly defined in Steven Soderbergh’s film of Che, the two films make up a three horr epic. His role in executing rapists, murderers and torturers is well defined. I am a pacifist. I don't believe in the death penalty, so I'm against that, but we're talking about a revolution. We had a revolution in Ireland in 1921 and after the revolution our own government executed many, many of the Republicans who opposed them. So revolutions and civil wars are vicious businesses.
CO: And so he was part of that.
JF: Absolutely. And there's a lot of rubbish out there about him hating gays and hating Blacks. I mean he made a famous speech in the UN in which he said, very clearly, how he felt about the way Blacks were treated in America. He supported Black civil rights movement the Black Panthers were inspired by him, I know that for a fact. And you know he was a hero to Black America. His mural is huge in Watts, in Los Angeles. It's in the Black Eyed Peas video if you remember who they are, you know. So he’s a universal symbol of the fight against oppression that does not mean he’s a saint.
CO: But there is a very glossing over of Che Guevara’s past isn’t there?
JF: I’m not glossing over anything. I don't believe in any act of violence against any individual, but sometimes, as in case of the Batista regime, rape and murder were used as a method to suppress people. I can understand somebody taking up the fight against them. We had to do it here to get rid of the English.
CO: How did you come to make this work of art?
JF: I had met him briefly like I said as a bar man. I was very impressed with him he was a very outward, gregarious, charming man. And when when went to Bolivia I did a piece for an Irish magazine called Scene magazine to commemorate this. The piece was rejected by the magazine. I made it a poster distributed widely, and I've always been inspired by him. To me he is someone who sacrificed himself for the most poor and impoverished peoples with no chance of success. Remember he was disowned by the Communist Party of Bolivia, and then went into battle very poorly prepared. He wasn't the greatest commander but he was a very dedicated man who was a doctor, who tried to help all the local people. And I was watching a program today in La Higuera, where over he died and they are devoted to him. You know they recognize his sacrifice. And as I said, that does not make him a saint. The Archbishop of La Paz to appeal to people not to call of a Santa Che.
CO: All right. We'll leave it there Mr. Fitzpatrick. Thank you.
JF: Thank you very much indeed.
JD: Jim Fitzpatrick is the Irish artist behind the iconic poster of Ernesto Che Guevara. We reached him in Howth, Ireland.
[Music: Ambient Guitar Plucks]
JD: Oh yeah, it's Friday, and that means it's time to kick back start trembling and assumed the fetal position under a table. Well, that's pretty much my evening routine these days. But tonight I think I'm going to add some helpless sobbing to the regimen, because I've just learned about a possible apocalypse I had never even considered. At a recent Volcanology conference scientists revealed new findings about the super-volcano that sits beneath Yellowstone National Park. It is capable of barfing up enough rock and ash to blanket much of the U.S.. And speaking of blankets, when it erupts it could bring about what is called a volcanic winter that would wreak havoc on the entire planet. Here's the bad news though, we may be much closer to the super-volcano’s super-eruption than super-science previously thought. These scientists discovered that an eruption builds a lot more quickly, in geological terms, than we ever knew. And the upshot of which — shouldn't have said upshot — is that one of the world's closely monitored super volcanoes, including the Yellowstone one, could erupt within our lifetime — thanks science. How about take a break for a while? And that brings us to the end of this helpful segment on future death from below. Now a helpful segment on future death from above. Within a few months China's 8.5-tonne Tiangong-1 satellite is expected to fall from space, which means that whatever hunks of the satellite that don't burn up on re-entry will really smash into the earth — very hard. And a Harvard astrophysicist predicts some of those chunks may weigh as much as 100 kilos or 220 pounds. And we have no idea where or when they will hit. Well that's it for that — by which I mean both this segment and also everything.
CBC would like to acknowledge the support of the Broadcasting Accessibility Fund.