CBCradio

August 19, 2008

Pt 1: Afghan Aid Workers - Working in Afghanistan has always had its share of risks. But this past week has proven especially lethal. Last Wednesday, an Afghan driver and three foreign female aid workers -- two of them Canadian -- were ambushed and shot-to-death on a road south of Kabul. The Taliban has claimed responsibility. The three women worked for the International Rescue Committee and in the wake of the attack, the IRC has suspended its humanitarian aid programs in Afghanistan. The group isn't the first to do so.

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Pt 2: The Exercise Pill - For the last 11 days, we've watched one ultra-fit athlete after another perform some truly astonishing feats of strength, endurance and speed. In order to get to the Olympic Games, those athletes have sacrificed years of their lives to intense, often all-consuming training regimes. But what if you could skip all that work ... and get the benefits of exercise without actually having to go to the gym? A group of researchers at the Salk Institute in La Jolla, California think they just might be able to help with that. They've discovered two muscle-enhancing drugs that -- in trials with mice anyway -- have been shown to mimic the effects of exercise and increase athletic endurance.

Read more here



Satire

It's Tuesday, August 19th.

Chinese sports officials remain devastated by hurdler Liu Xiang's inability to compete at the Beijing Olympics because of an injured leg.

Currently, Liu will nonetheless enjoy a potentially bright future ... as glue.

This is The Current.

 

Afghan Aid Workers

Working in Afghanistan has always had its share of risks. But this past week has proven especially lethal. Last Wednesday, an Afghan driver and three foreign female aid workers -- two of them Canadian -- were ambushed and shot-to-death on a road south of Kabul. The Taliban has claimed responsibility. The three women worked for the International Rescue Committee and in the wake of the attack, the IRC has suspended its humanitarian aid programs in Afghanistan. The group isn't the first to do so. In 2004, Medecins Sans Frontieres pulled out of the country after five of its staff members were killed by the Taliban. And to make sure its message got through loud and clear this time, the Taliban followed up the attack with an open letter to all Canadians. In a clip we hear Zabiullah Mujahid, a spokesperson for the Taliban.

Drew Gilmour knows all about the threats aid workers face in Afghanistan. He's worked there since 2001. Back in March, Susan Ormiston got a first-hand look at the work he was doing near Khandahar. He joined The Current from Ottawa.

Mark Sedra is a Senior Fellow at the The Centre for International Governance Innovation and a Research Scholar in the Department of Political Science at the University of Waterloo. He joined us in our Toronto studio.



Listen to Part One:

 

The Exercise Pill

For the last 11 days, we've watched one ultra-fit athlete after another perform some truly astonishing feats of strength, endurance and speed. In order to get to the Olympic Games, those athletes have sacrificed years of their lives to intense, often all-consuming training regimes. But what if you could skip all that work ... and get the benefits of exercise without actually having to go to the gym? A group of researchers at the Salk Institute in La Jolla, California think they just might be able to help with that. They've discovered two muscle-enhancing drugs that -- in trials with mice anyway -- have been shown to mimic the effects of exercise and increase athletic endurance.

Dr. Ronald Evans is the lead researcher of the team that developed the drugs and he joined us from La Jolla.

For some perspective on how these two drugs might change the world of competitive sports, we asked Gerard Lauziere for his thoughts. He's the head coach of the Quebec karate team, and a former member of the Canadian national karate team.



Listen to Part Two:

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