Pt 2: - H1N1 Exaggerated? - Earlier this morning, the World Health Organization declared that the H1N1 influenza outbreak is still a pandemic. But a year after it was first declared, an increasing number of critics are saying that the threat was overblown from the start. (Read More)
Pt 3: Letters - It's mail day. We heard your thoughts on why we really hate oil companies and on the Israeli raid on the flotilla bound for Gaza. And we heard from Edward Peck. He's a retired U.S. diplomat who was on one of the ships in that ill-fated flotilla. (Read More)
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Whole Show Blow-by-Blow
Today's guest host was Hana Gartner.
It's Thursday June 3rd.
The government has introduced legislation aimed at bringing Canada's copyright law up to date. Among the changes, it will now legalize the burning of CDs.
Currently, Okay, remind me - what's a CD again?
This is The Current.
Ottawa Defence Show - Ashley Burke
We started this segment with a clip describing a few of the high-tech military tools on display at CANSEC 2010, the largest annual defense and security trade show in Canada. For the second year in a row, it's being held at Lansdowne Park in Ottawa. For 20 years, that wouldn't have been possible. Ottawa banned arms trade shows from city property in 1989, in the wake of widespread protests against the ARMX weapons trade show.
But that ban kind of evaporated in the wake of Ottawa's amalgamation with some of the municipalities around it. And so, for the last two years, Ottawa has been home to the biggest commercial display of military technology in the country.
Ashley Burke is a freelance journalist. She got into the show yesterday to take a look around. She was in Ottawa this morning.
Ottawa Defence Show - Panel
Last year, the CANSEC 2009 trade show was quietly allowed to go-ahead in Ottawa, with little fanfare. But this year, the debate has heated up significantly.
Alex Cullen is a City Councillor in Ottawa. He petitioned the city to renew its ban on arms trade shows on city property. He was in our Ottawa studio. And Eli El-Chantiry is also a City Councillor in Ottawa. He supports the decision to host CANSEC 2010. He was on the phone from his home in Ottawa.
Article of Interest: DND Rules
H1N1 Exaggerated? - Paul Flynn
We started out with a clip from the WHO a year ago. As the number of swine flu cases rose to 30,000 people - spread across 74 different countries - the World Health Organization declared a pandemic for the first time in 41 years. Much of the fear over H1N1 has died down since then.
But the pandemic? Technically, it's still with us. Earlier this morning, after consulting with its team of scientific experts, the WHO declared that the H1N1 influenza outbreak is still a pandemic, and that the world is still at risk.
But according to some critics, that risk was overblown from the start. And the world has wasted billions of dollars fighting a flu that in the end, killed far fewer people than the average seasonal flu.
Earlier this year, the Council of Europe commissioned an investigation into the WHO's decision to call the H1N1 outbreak a pandemic, and whether it did so under pressure from pharmaceutical companies. Paul Flynn is heading up that investigation. He's a British Labour MP and he was in London. We did, by the way, request an interview with the WHO. It declined, citing scheduling conflicts.
Article of Interest: H1N1 Not Over
H1N1 Exaggerated? - Samuel Bogoch
There are those who believe that the H1N1 outbreak was, indeed, a legitimate pandemic. Samuel Bogoch is a Canadian biochemist and virologist. He taught at Harvard University before starting a company called Replikins. It's a bio-chemistry company that has developed software to assess the threat of an epidemic. Samuel Bogoch was in New York City.
H1N1 Exaggerated? - Comedy
Earlier this morning, the WHO declared that the H1N1 flu outbreak is still a pandemic. You thought it was over long ago? Yeah, I know. It's confusing. So our friends at the CBC's Content Factory have produced a lay-person's guide to detecting the end of a pandemic in Canada. We aired that piece.
Cut: Track 1, Dancing Fool - Male Vocal
Composers: Cacavas, John, and David, Hal
Publisher: APM Collection (ASCAP)
Letters - Edward Peck
Thursday is mail day. The Current's John Chipman joined guest host Hana Gartner in studio to lend a hand.
Israel: Despite widespread international condemnation, Israel continues to stand behind its decision to raid a series of ships that were bound for Gaza. The Israeli position is threatening relationships with countries that have long supported it, including Turkey. Tuesday on The Current, we explored the diplomatic fallout for Israel. And today, we heard listeners' thoughts on the matter.
We also heard from Edward Peck. He's a retired U.S. diplomat who was onboard a Greek ship participating in the Gaza flotilla which was boarded by Israeli commandos. Mr. Peck has returned to the United States and he joined us from our studios in Washington, D.C.
Operation Mincemeat: On Monday we brought you a real life story that read like a spy novel. Operation Mincemeat was an intricate deception by British Intelligence in World War 2, which deceived the Germans into believing an Allied invasion would occur in Greece and Sardinia instead of the true target of Sicily. Ben Macintyre is the author of a new book detailing the plot which actually originated in a fiction, called "Operation Mincemeat: How a Dead Man and a Bizarre Plan Fooled the Nazis and Assured an Allied Victory."
It turns out the lessons of Mincemeat still resonate today. Michel Juneau-Katsuya is a former senior manager and intelligence officer with CSIS with over twenty years of service. He's also the author of "Nest of Spies: The Startling Truth About Foreign Agents At Work Within Canada's Borders." He was in Ottawa.
Oil Spill: The failure of BP to cap the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico is fueling anger against the oil giant. But a new book has a different take on hating big oil. The author, John Hofmeister was the President of the Shell Oil Company from 2005 to 2008. And last Friday, he told us what he sees as the most important reason why we hate the oil companies. Today, we heard your opinion on this.
One way BP has been tackling the oil spilling into the Gulf of Mexico has been the use of chemical dispersants. Over three million litres of a dispersant called Corexit has been poured into the waters. But some critics say dispersants have never been used in this kind of volume before and Corexit in particular is not the least toxic or most effective brand. Last Thursday on the program, we spoke to a Corexit representative. Today, we heard listeners' reaction.
Last Word - Spy Strategies
And we left you with a few more spy strategies - ones that weren't as successful as Operation Mincemeat.