Monday, August 18, 2008 | Categories: Episodes
It's Monday, August 18th.
This week marks the 40th anniversary of the Soviet Union's invasion of Czechoslovakia, now known separately as the Czech Republic and Slovakia.
Currently, or as Vladimir Putin likes to call them: Western Ossetia.
This is The Current.
The temperature is dropping. The days are getting shorter. And back-to-school ads are haunting children everywhere. All sure signs that Labour Day is looming. And with the end of summer comes the start of a new political season.
Over the summer, politicians of all stripes have been flipping pancakes, strutting their way through rodeos, waving in parades and working the backyard Barbecue circuit. But with Prime Minister Stephen Harper calling a fourth by-election for September and rumours of a fall election gaining steam, it's looking like the soft politics of lazy summer days are over. And party leaders are putting down the tongs and picking up the battle axes.
Prime Minister Stephen Harper speaking in Cupids, Newfoundland late last week. And for his part, Liberal Leader Stephane Dion isn't sounding like he's in holiday mode either. He had tough words for Harper on the weekend while speaking at Concordia University in Montreal on Saturday.
For their thoughts on how our leaders spent their summer vacations, what to expect from the new political season and whether we're headed for a Fall election, I'm Lawrence Martin, a columnist with The Globe and Mail and Kady O'Malley, a writer with Macleans Magazine joined The Current for this discussion . They were both in Ottawa.
Listen to Part One:
Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf announced his resignation today. Facing impeachment charges for constitutional violations, the embattled President has been under mounting pressure to resign since February. Mr. Musharraf has called the charges against him baseless.
Washington, who views Mr. Musharraf as a key ally in the war on terror, is said to be concerned about his departure and its potentially destabilizing effect in the country and the region. For some perspective on all of this Ahmed Rashid joined The Current in discussion. He is a Pakistani Journalist and author of Descent in Chaos: The United States and the failure of the Nation Building in Pakistan, Afghanistan and Central Asia. He spoke to us from Lahore.
Indonesia is often held up as a shining example of a modern muslim state. A democratic country where cultural and religious diversity are the norm. However politically conservative Islam has taken root in Indonesia and it has resulted in less tolerance for minortity groups - particularly in the country's Ahmadiyah community. The Ahmadiyah are a minotiry sect within Islam and they have become the target of fundamentalist muslims. Conservative Mulisms believe they are infidels and have driven hundreds from their homes in brutal attacks.
Last Febuary we ran a documentary that began with the promise of protection. It was prepared by the CBC's Natasha Fatah and is called Burden of Belief. Here it is again.
Listen to Part Two: