tv BBC World News PBS December 21, 2011 2:30pm-3:00pm PST
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>> this is "bbc world news america" reporting from washington. just days after u.s. forces leave, iraq faces political crisis as the prime investor asks for the vice president to be handed over for trial. the american city on the brink of bankruptcy and the people refused to give vent on an economy in crisis. a blast from the past, they thought it was lost but a rare recording of a bowie classic is rediscovered. welcome to our viewers on pbs in
america and around the globe. it has been less than a week since the last u.s. troops pulled out of iraq and already the country is facing a standoff which threatens the stability. the vice president has been accused of terrorism. the prime minister has demanded that he has been handed over -- that he be handed over. prime minister is a shi'a and the vice-president is a sunni, those holding him our kurdish. >> the country is in the grip of a deepening political crisis. a power-sharing deal is under threat. there are fears that tensions between shiite muslims and sunni politicians to spill out into the streets. dramatic allegations have been
made against the vice president tariq al-hashemi, who denies that he ran hit squads targeting shi'a individuals. the prime minister has called on kurdish leaders to hand him over to face justice. >> if there is only one way out of this, it is through the judicial system and nothing else. he should stand trial either to be found innocent or be indicted. there is no other way. >> tariq al-hashemi has angrily rebutted the charges against him. he said it was politically motivated. he did not trust the justice system under a government led by nouri maliki. >> i demand that the elementary investigation be held here in kurdistan and the investigation should be observed by independent parties.
for my part, i will be ready to appear. accusing -- with sunnis accusing nouri maliki, they have boycotted the government. sunni provinces are now pushing for autonomy from the shiite- led government that they say is too influenced by iran. it is only three days since the u.s. troops left iran after almost nine years. -- it is only three days since the u.s. troops left iraq. u.s. officials have expressed concern, calling on all sides to settle their differences peacefully. in a country that has seen so much bloodshed, the stakes are
very high. >> for more on the deepening rift and how much a threat it proposes -- it poses to stability, i am joined by a senior fellow at the center for american progress. thank you for being with us on the bbc. should we be worried? >> yes, extremely. these kinds of tensions could lead to renewed violence if the political process does not deal with this. we are on the process of a real crisis and this is very worrisome. >> for those people who are worried about sectarian rifts, the american process was providing the glued to bind together different factions and society and they were right. >> there is an element of truth but the simple fact of the matter is that when we invaded country, we got rid of unpopular sunni dictator. the vast majority of people in iraq were shi'a and they are and
power. we deluded ourselves into thinking that we could actually not only stabilize the country but also grease the wheels toward a political transition. what we are seeing is the rough- and-tumble of iraqi politics. >> it is it just iraqi politics or we talking about regional influence? >> i worry that this will have a broader implications. some countries are concerned about what is going on inside of iraq. they have expressed concern about iran. there is this rising shi'a vs sunni divide. you could see this coming not only in iraq but also throughout the region. >> the u.s. has pulled all of its troops out. they have close relations with the government. is anything they can do? >> right now, the u.s. officials are trying to use the leverage that they have.
they are sending billions of dollars of weapons to the iraqi government. in public, they're saying this is bad. let's change the course. the levers that any outsider has is quite limited when it comes to nouri maliki. >> let's talk about the kurds. the vice president is in kurdish-controlled territory and they have indicated that they will not be handing him over but traditionally they have played a power broker role. >> absolutely, even though they represent 20% of the population. no government has been formed without their consent. you have seen the shift in tide that will empower the kurds once again and how they play their hand. it will be interesting. there are disputed territories and unresolved political issues.
>> we will want to keep watching. thank you. >> today, the white house said it is deeply disturbed by reports as many as 250 people that have been killed in syria since monday. a human rights group has accused the government of carrying out a massacre. >> this unverified a foot is purported to show a house in the city of homs, one of six hit by army shells. 12 people were killed there including a child. the images are too gruesome to show. syria signed up to the arab peace plan on monday and the violence goes on. in fact, it has intensified sharply. most of it has been not far from the border with turkey.
the opposition syrian national council is calling it a massacre. they say that nearly 250 people have died since monday alone. this is the bloodiest time since the uprising began in march. they want the u.s. security council to declare this as an unsafe zone. there is little appetite for another military adventure. with that possibility in mind, the regime has been staging a military removers aimed at putting across the message that their uniform -- unified. troops and police have been killed in the violence virtually every day. the regime blames armed terrorist gangs for all of the trouble and say that they are carrying out a plot to undermine the country. they are also encouraging big rallies to put across the
message that they still have popular support in resisting the south side conspiracy. that is the image that they will try to convey when the arab peace observers start arriving on thursday. >> as the unrest and bloodshed continues, egyptian women have taken to the streets in cairo in unprecedented numbers. they have stage what has been described as the biggest women's demonstration in modern egyptian history. their outrage was prompted by graphic images of soldiers being and stripping a female protester. our journalist was in the square covering advance and she was arrested and insulted by the police. she is now back in new york and she joins us from there. -- our journalist was in the square covering events and she was arrested and assaulted by police.
are you surprised by this? >> i am excited to see this. the women are making it clear that they will no longer be silenced by the brutal and sadistic violence that the army and police have unleashed not just on women but on men, too. specifically, the use of sexual violence. >> the you see the revolution as under threat or is this an inevitable part of the process? -- do you see the revolution as under threat. >> basically, you have replaced one mubarak with 19 mubaraks. i think they're doing a terrible job of running the country. i think that the generals should stand trial for crimes against the egyptian people. they are losing popularity by the day. i think what happened yesterday in tahrir square was women making it very clear that we will not allow you to hijack our
revolution. >> a lot of attention has been focused on tahrir square in the events that have occurred there throughout the year. of course, we know that the vast majority of egyptians are not in tahrir square and many of them are concerned by what they see as violence there and they want the continuity of the army. >> they used to want the continuity of the army in the country because they believed for a very long time and they were willing to give the benefit of the doubt that the army was what it said it was, the guardian of the revolution. the more they see the sadistic violence, the continues sexual violence against women. the military subjected women to virginity tests. myself and other women have been suggested to the violence. the military is doing a terrible job of running the country and we deserve a new leadership.
i think the majority of egyptians don't have to be on the streets for the revolution to succeed because the majority does not make a revolution, the minority can make it succeed. the military is doing a terrible job of acting as the caretaker of the revolution. >> do you remain optimistic about what is going on in egypt? >> absolutely. i am forever optimistic about what is going on in egypt. if you remember in 2005 when the demonstration began, now we have a full revolution going. we have demonstrations against the military and anyone would like to hijack the revolution. >> thank you for joining us. >> thank you. >> the captain of invalid's football team is facing charges of racially abusing an opponent. -- the captain of england's
football team. there was comments made during a match in october. john terry says he will fight the charge. european banks have borrowed 600 trillion dollars -- $600 billion on the cheap. the new arrangement is part of a series of unprecedented measures to keep credit flowing at a time when banks are increasingly wary of lending to each other due to the debt crisis. in north korea, there have been extraordinary scenes of grief following the death of kim jong il. state television showed images of wailing women throwing themselves on the floor next to his body. the organized public mourning continues in the streets and halls around the country. russia's parliament has met for the first time since the
disputed election which sparked public outrage. despite the diminished number of seats for vladimir putin's party, they dominated the opening session. the allegations of corruption continue. >> before the controversial parliament even started work, there was violence outside. why police pulled away protesters who complained that the election results were rigged. the opening of the first session went ahead despite concerns about the fairness of the vote. among the deputies taking up their seats in the tainted parliament or a famous russian boxer and a man the british police accused of murder in london. the problem is parliament is that we know that tens of thousands of people and maybe millions do not regarded as legitimate. they believe that many people
are here because the authorities chose them. 11 days ago, moscow saw the biggest protests in a generation. people were demanding a new election. one of the most senior deputies of the ruling party insisted that the parliament was a fair reflection of the views of the country. >> everybody understands that generally people voted for this composition of the party. that is why there is no problem with the legitimacy of this body. >> this man angrily disagrees. the movement demanding fair elections was given fresh impetus overnight with the release from jail of the increase in the influential political blocker -- blogger.
>> the election in march will not be a real election, he said. the scheme organized by crooks and thieves to allow one quick to take back the throne temporarily occupied by another. this is not an election. he told his supporters that the government is running scared of the pro-democracy movement. the next appearance will be at the next big protest, tens of thousands are expected to turn out again on saturday. >> you are watching "bbc world news," still to come -- we travel to detroit where people refuse to abandon a city blighted by unemployment and crime. now to the annual hunt for a little piece of extra terrestrial turf. every year, researchers had to the antarctic in search of
prized media rights. now, the abundant supply of space rocks has been brought to a new facility of the smithsonian institution in maryland. >> inside of these cabinet control cabinets are priceless particles of the cosmos, rocks and space that gives scientists a snapshot of how planet earth was formed. >> meter rights are little timepieces from the formation of the solar system. they represent the earliest processes of the planetary formation. >> this is the world's largest public collection of your rights gathered from antarctica. >> you can see this powder black crest is called a fusion crust. this forms as it passes through the earth's atmosphere and the outer layer is melting as it is
passing through the atmosphere. >> around 5% of meteorites found on earth are thought to have originated from the asteroid. these images show the surface craters caused by impact that scientists now believe blew the rocks into space. there is some 18,000 meter rights in the collection and there is always something new to be discovered. -- there is some 18,000 meteorites in the collection. they don't know where they have come from. the nasa mission might be able to solve part of that mystery. in a few years, it is due to reach another location and at that point they should be able to tell if this rock or any others are originated from that asteroid. >> over the past few years, a
city in america has taken a beating. nowhere has the heart to been greater than in detroit. once the heart of the car industry, this is blighted by unemployment, violence, and homes that have been abandoned. detroit faces the distinction of being the largest u.s. city to be on the bank -- on the brink of bankruptcy. i traveled there to see how it was going. this is the city in crisis where even the mayor says that the system is broken. >> the reality we are facing is simple, if we continue down the same old path, we will lose the ability to control our own destiny. >> reporters are often too quick to compare places. detroit has been ravaged by industrial decline, unemployment, and cry. every pair of shoes thrown over the power lines commemorate someone killed in the streets.
violence that reflects all neighborhoods. property prices have crashed and the population of the strike has simply collapsed. not everyone has abandoned the city. -- the population of detroit has simply collapsed. these people are survivors. even though they struggle for money, they refuse to leave. >> i cannot go. i have been here since 1957. it is worse now, no doubt. it is hard for the young people to make money. there used to be a time that they could get jobs with no problem. >> sometimes i get discouraged and i get weary and i tell my husband, let's get out of here. then i think that we are ordained to stay because how the kids come to us and open up to us. >> the work they do is to provide food, shelter, and the
real world counseling in an area where property, drug dealing, and violence is a way of life. -- in an area where poverty, drug dealing, and violence is a way of life. >> there are guns, no guidance, we run wild. >> seeing so hard. -- it is so hard. you would not even know which step to take to go in the right direction. >> his brother was killed in a shootout. this is typical of the problems that the couple have to deal with. >> he lets his pride co, but me, i'm different. >> if you have to go to the free food place, then you go there. if you have to go to the shelter, then you go to the shelter. if you have gotten so low, were also you going, baby, but up?
>> religion runs through this community. this woman helps out with the local church where free food is handed out to the poor who are stocking up for christmas. the recent recession has made things worse but a fundamental shift is under way on the country built on the idea that all men are created equal. the gap between rich and poor in america it is bigger than it has been for years. what we have seen from north to south is a country struggling to employ, house, and feed its poorest. >> for a piece of glam rock history which has been rediscovered after nearly four decades. david bowie's performance from "top of the pops" in 1973 was thought to be lost. a man kept a copy at home and now the song is back on air for
all to see and hear. ♪ ♪ >> this is vintage david bowie. when the pop star was putting the glam into rock. ♪ ♪ >> he looked fantastic and sounds even better. ♪ ♪ >> that performance by bowie of his hit was filmed here in studio 8 of bbc television center. there was no backing track, this was the real thing. they recorded it on the third of january, 1973 and it was broadcast a day later on "top of the pops." that was the last time it was seen on television until today.
the recording was lost and presumed deleted until a few weeks ago that a cameraman mentioned he had a copy at home. >> i always knew i had it i did not note -- i just did not know that other people wanted it. no one realized that it was an iconic performance that it would have been wonderful to have all of those years on. ♪ ♪ >> they made a special camera lens tikrit this effect -- to create this affect so that he could demonstrate his work to other customers. ♪ ♪ >> thank goodness he did because what we see here is something very rare and very special. >> this does show a lot of flat
performances. >> this performance will delight bowie fans the world over and there might be more musical treasures to come. the man who kept the tape says he has another hundred from the same era. >> a little piece of history there. before we go, there is one last piece of video we wanted to show you. this polar bear was born last month at the scandinavian wildlife park in denvedenmark. after his mother stopped producing enough milk, the staff at the park took over his care. that brings the show to a close. for all of us here, thank you for watching.
>> make sense of international news at bbc.com/news. >> funding was made possible by the freeman foundation of new york, stowe, vermont, and honolulu. newman's own foundation. and union bank. >> union bank offers unique insight and expertise in a range of industries. what can we do for you? >> "bbc world news america" was