The House

CBC Radio's The House: Sanctions and survival

On this week’s show: A woman in Kyiv describes what life is like in the embattled Ukrainian capital. The House digs into the difficulties of tracking Russian oligarch assets in Canada. And Regina’s mayor discusses how those measures risk possible economic fallout in her city. Plus — three MPs with first-hand experience in battling disinformation discuss how to deal with it, as online distortions surge during the conflict in Ukraine.

Here is what's on this week's episode of The House

People carry their belongings as they walk past debris of last week's combat in the Ukrainian capital of Kyiv on March 4, 2022. (Sergei Supinsky/AFP/Getty Images)
On this week’s show: A woman in Kyiv describes what life is like in the embattled Ukrainian capital. The House digs into the difficulties of tracking Russian oligarch assets in Canada. And Regina’s mayor discusses how those measures risk possible economic fallout in her city. Plus — three MPs with first-hand experience in battling disinformation discuss how to deal with it, as online distortions surge during the conflict in Ukraine.

Ukraine crisis continues

The UN Security Council held an emergency meeting after Russia's attack on the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant. Foreign ministers from NATO member nations also met. What diplomatic moves are being made to calm the crisis?

CBC's defence correspondent Murray Brewster joins The House with an update on the situation.

CBC’s defence correspondent Murray Brewster joins the program with an update, after the UN Security Council and NATO foreign ministers meet to discuss the conflict in Ukraine.

Daily life in Kyiv

Liudmila is sheltering in her downtown Kyiv apartment with her son and daughter-in-law. Her audio diary for The House describes the stoicism of Kyiv's residents as they brace for the advance of the Russian army.

Liudmila describes the constant air raid alerts, the sleeping in shifts, the curfews — and finding comfort in making pancakes by candlelight.

Liudmila is a Ukrainian woman sheltering in her downtown Kyiv apartment. She shares an audio diary about her daily life amidst air raid alerts, curfews, and a war that’s closing in.

How sanctions could affect Canada

Canada has levied sanctions against a number of Russians and entities. Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland has warned that the measures could have economic consequences in Canada. 

One company to watch is Evraz, whose major shareholder is Russian oligarch and close Putin ally Roman Abramovich. It runs a substantial operation in Saskatchewan. Regina Mayor Sandra Masters joins the program to talk about the risk to jobs in her city.

Canada wants to put sanctions on more Russian oligarchs, and that could have economic repercussions on their businesses here. Regina mayor Sandra Masters speaks about risks for workers of a steel company connected to oligarch Roman Abramovich.

Hunting oligarchs' assets

It's easy to identify the owners of some Russian assets — things like steel companies and sports teams. But what about real estate? Fine art? Luxury vehicles? Do we really know what Russian oligarchs own in Canada?

CBC's Alex Zabjek explores the legislative loopholes that make it hard to find out. Joining the discussion are James Cohen of Transparency International; Casey Michel, author of the book American Kleptocracy; Peter German, a former deputy RCMP commissioner and chair of the Vancouver Anti-Corruption Institute; and Charlene Cieslik, former FINTRAC employee and now chief compliance officer for a bitcoin ATM firm.

How much Russian oligarch wealth is stashed in Canada? James Cohen of Transparency International, and others, describe the financial maneuvers that make it hard to track that cash — and what the government wants to do about it.

Dealing with disinformation 

Disinformation is becoming a pressing issue in 2022. Disinformation helped to drive the recent anti-vaccine mandate convoy protests and Russian propaganda about the invasion of Ukraine. What role should politicians play in maintaining a shared set of facts in a democracy. Is the solution legislation or education?

Three MPs sit down with Chris Hall to talk about their own experiences with disinformation and how they think the situation might be improved: Liberal MP for Ottawa Centre Yasir Naqvi, Conservative MP for Calgary Nose Hill Michelle Rempel Garner, and the NDP's Timmins–James Bay MP Charlie Angus.

In combatting disinformation, is the solution legislation or education? Liberal MP Yasir Naqvi, Conservative MP Michelle Rempel Garner and NDP MP Charlie Angus join the program to discuss.

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