tv European Journal PBS July 26, 2014 6:00pm-6:31pm PDT
>> hello and a very warm welcome to "european journal" coming to you from dw studios in brussels. it's good to have you with us. here is what is coming up in today's show -- britain -- the specter of a takeover in islamic schools. hungary -- he secret heroes of the peaceful resolution. and poland -- the battle over test tube babies. british education authorities were alarmed late last year about the content of an anonymous letter. the author warned of a secret operation called trojan horse, that was allegedly in full swing with islamist trying to
infiltrate schools in birmingham. in the end, the letter proved to be a hoax, but authorities had already sprung into action. they inspected 21 schools, and at five of them, they came to a same worrying conclusion -- the report said they had canceled sex education and boys and girls were being taught separately. in britain and in birmingham in particular, people are now debating the role of reddish values -- british values in education. >> events behind the school fence have gripped the nation. >> do with english people do. go to school, learn english, english ways. >> the british education oversight authority found that conservative muslim governors had exercised inappropriate influence over school activities at a secular primary school where 99% of the schoolchildren
are muslims. the june inspection concluded that school governors had been promoting a narrow, faith-based ideology. school funds were used to subsidize a trip to mecca for muslim pupils. teachers said they kept quiet for fear of losing their jobs. the school denies charges of promotes extremism. on its internet site, it said it found no evidence of strict islamic practices in the school, and it rejected claims that any member of staff altered the curriculum in an attempt to deceive. the row over religious ideologies in schools has long been brewing in the city were one in five was born outside britain. around 40% of the population come from a migrant background. many families have ties to british colonies like pakistan and bangladesh. here in the inner-city area, most residents are muslim.
many parents want their culture to be reflected by the education system. >> i think it is wrong for them to be taught at a young age to be taught sex education. instead, they should be taught religious, or if they are going to be taught sex, why not teach religion as well? >> i had one conversation with you, and after the conversation, you thought that you like a girl and you try to talk to me again and again, and i start getting close and start opening up more, and it can lead to sin. that's where it starts. >> oliver is an anglican vicar who administers minority christian parish here in small he. he is well aware of the
religious views of his muslim neighbors, but in the wake of the trojan horse debate, he cautions against making sweeping generalizations. >> when we are talking about religious conservatism and equating it to extremism, which leads onto islamism in the terrorism, you are entering into a totally different conversation, and i think that's why people get agitated. >> that does not mean that intolerance of other religions should be allowed, says the vicar. this is where the government must step in. >> for education and particularly for the education of children who describe themselves as christians, it is important that they are respected as much as anyone else is. >> at birmingham central mosque, one of the biggest in the
country, many parents are angered at the row being played out over their children. there is frustration in particular at the conservative minister for education. he's introducing new rules for the next cool year, making it compulsory for all schools to teach so-called british values. >> by using the word "rotation values -- "british values," we are perhaps not actually doing a service to the value that we all hold dear. let's not say british values. let's say human decent values, which are acceptable to all humans. we are making it inclusive. >> but inclusiveness seems to have added fuel to an already fiery debate about what it means to be british. >> every religion has got their own right to their beliefs, but
at the end of the day, i still think that this is great britain, and i do think that our beliefs and our religions and things like that should also be put first. >> the accusations of islamization are currently being reviewed, and more snap inspections are planned for the future, but the role of islam in british society is set to stay high on the agenda, especially ahead of next year's general election. >> this year, 2014, marx many important anniversaries in europe's history. the first world war broke out exactly 100 years ago. the second world war started 75 years ago. the berlin wall fell 25 years ago. and our summer series, we visit people who helped bring down the iron curtain. >> the first part of our series takes us to the border between austria and hungary. it was here that a peaceful resolution began that would lead
to the collapse of the soviet union. in 1989, hungary still belonged to the eastern bloc, but many politicians no longer supported the division of east and west. in the summer of that year, at a small checkpoint, they organized what they called the pan-european picnic. among the guests were several hundred people from eastern germany, and then something extraordinary happened. >> august 19, 19 89, is a davies two men will never forget. back then, they were guards at the border crossing. hans was on the austrian side. the other on the hungarian. when a whole was torn in the iron curtain. >> it was an onslaught of people looking for freedom. they wanted to get across and not slowly. there was a pressure there as a border guard, you had to keep calm, and at the same time, fight to keep standing.
because they did not walk. they ran. >> suddenly, people started flocking in from the surrounding cornfields. hungary was flooded with refugees from east germany. he saw them coming and had to make a quick decision whether to shoot at them or not. >> i had around 20 seconds to decide. you could see about 100 meters down the road. at first, we only saw heads. we did not think anything of that, as we were expecting a hungarian delegation to arrive at 3:00 p.m. but then we saw a huge crowd appearing with children on their shoulders, with backpacks, and we thought -- what's this about? they are the wrong guests. the austrian neighbors will laugh when they get to the other side. >> the east germans were able to make their escape just as hungary and austria were holding a symbolic piece protest, known
as the pan-european picnic. visitors could take away a piece of the iron curtain. the ideal was for them to enjoy gloss and beer and an open border for a couple of hours -- to enjoy goulash and beer at an open border for a couple of hours. the first breach of the iron curtain really happened by chance? the two border guard still puzzle over what happened on that saturday. bela hung up his uniform because he felt his superiors had left him in the lurch. after august 19, they kept a low profile. his counterpart explains. >> i assume it was touch and go. he was charged with making sure that no one broke through. only austrians and hungarians were allowed. no refugees. we knew how to shoot, and our guns were loaded.
he knew how to shoot, too. if someone had fallen down or something happened and a shot had gone off accidentally, then it would have been pretty tense. >> they have been showered with awards. germany and hungary have decorated them with medals, but the men still cannot help but feel that they were pawns in someone else's game. >> it's impossible that such a crowd of people could reach the border unnoticed without the knowledge of the border guards, secret services, and reconnaissance. not even a bird can fly over the border crossing unnoticed. >> yet, these two guards in new nothing -- these two guards knew nothing. >> it was a complete surprise. the hungarian authorities must
have known. someone was controlling it. >> in between, the last crown prince of austria-hungary, and hungary's minister of state in 1989, the sponsors of the pan-european picnic. we travel to the outskirts of budapest to meet the former communist minister of state. not 80 years old, he is a courageous individual and one of the architects of a united europe. he was the one who gave the order to tear down the iron curtain and hungary -- i and hungary -- in hungary. >> in 1985, a reporter from the bbc asked me, "if your people have turned away from socialism, then what would you do?" i replied, "i would follow my people." and he did.
in mid-1989. >> hungary began dismantling fortifications along the austrian border that have been there for 40 years. over several kilometers, the electrical signaling equipment has been dismounted and the barb wire torn down. by the end of 1990, all the fence along the border is to be dismantled. last week, the border post were described as obsolete. >> it was up to me to organize the picnic. but i quickly realized that it was not just an ordinary picnic with goulash soup and roast meat , but that it would also have political repercussions. >> was august 19, 1989 a trial balloon to see how soviets would
react to a brief opening of the wall? >> sure, a test. moscow did not react. >> a small section of the iron curtain still remains. sometimes they walk along it and feel a sense of ride. as guards on opposite sides of the border, they did the right thing at the right moment. three weeks later, hungary opened its borders to the west. >> have you ever heard of doctors refusing to help deliver a baby even though it is their job or priest refusing to baptize a child, even though his parents have asked for god's blessing? in poland, these things happen all the time when the children in question have been conceived to artificial insemination or in vitro fertilization. the catholic church in poland considers those children the work of the devil. the church says the medical technique is murder because many embryos have to be discarded in
order to produce one baby. still, poland has seen its birthrate decline for years when polish couples that want to have children could not. >> the almost daily broadcast of images such as these on polish television last year triggered a minor revolution. they showed the infertility treatment known as in vitro fertilization. they followed the prime minister and his civic platform party's election promise to start a program that would cover the bulk of the cost for 15,000 couples. without state support, the treatment cost between 10 or 15 times and average monthly salary -- out of reach for most people.
>> it was a revolution. we broke a taboo and changed the polish mentality. for years, the widespread belief -- belief in poland was that ivf babies would be born with disfigurement. we now know it is nonsense. the first 80 children have now been bored, so we have a lot of happy parents. >> the first 80 children have now been born. >> six years ago, doctors said evf was her only hope of conceiving a child. she was looking at medical bills of 40,000 euros and up, money she simply did not have. >> we did it anyway. we did not go on vacation. we did not renovate our apartment, did not buy anything new, but it still was not enough. our extended family help us. they collected money so we could afford a child. our family stood by us because they knew we faced a great challenge and very high costs.
>> little yulia was born four years ago. her mother talked to her about ivf when she was still a baby. >> it was very important to me, and i wanted her to hear it from me. she was three weeks old when i started telling her stories about how she was born and so on. i know she did not get what i was saying, but it was a way for me to practice what i will tell her later on. >> when we filmed this, she was pregnant again and was packing her bags for the hospital. her second baby was also conceived using ivf, but this time, the polish state paid for the treatment. >> the new program makes sense and helps women like marta. it offers new hope to many
couples who for all manner of reasons could not have afforded ivf without help. a lot of people use it. >> i love to see the children once they are born because i have known them the longest. i knew them when they were just a single cell. none of it would have been possible without this program. when the parents give me photos of their babies, it feels like i'm making dreams come true. >> but the catholic church in poland takes a different view. >> it's doubtless that it's very hard for these people who cannot have children, but they are trying to do something that should not be allowed. they are trying to circumvent nature to get a child, and what is obviously not right is the destruction of unwanted human
eggs. >> the catholic church in poland is trying to use its influence to put a stop to the practice. at the moment, ivf is not legally forbidden in poland. the church would like to see a band written into law, however, but many of poland's faithful ask why god made it possible for humans to develop ivf in the first place. >> it's nice in theory to think the clever person uses it to create another person, but unfortunately, clever people use the same intelligence to develop the nuclear bomb, build weapons that kill, and discover chemical weapons, so no matter how seductive the thesis is, it's not right. >> a couple of days ago, we received a phone call from marja -- marta to say she is now the
proud mother of baby sophia. she granted us permission to film and broadcast these images of joyous parenthood. >> i'm so happy that ivf exists and that i did not have to scrimp and save in order to have this child. my husband and i could never imagine a life without children. >> with the help of state-sponsored ivf, she was able to have a second child. the moral rights and wrongs of the treatment will remain a topic of debate, but for now at least, it seems unlikely that the church and conservatives succeed in reversing medical progress. >> the european union project is based on the principle of solidarity. that's why there are net contributors and net recipients among the 28 member states.
in other words, rich countries support for countries financially. the idea is to develop poorer regions so people can find jobs there. over the next coming years, the eu will invest some 325 billion euros, more than one third of its budget. in order to get the money, regions have to apply and suggest projects, but all too often, the money from brussels goes down the drain. we have this example from italy. >> from a distance, the lake looks like paradise. it sure is a nature reserve with a cycle path running along it, which all too often looks like this. as we go in search of the lost past and the millions that have supposedly been spent on it, we are joined by other would-be cyclists.
here is a section of the past. ian scott is happy to have found it, not least because the tourist information office has no maps of the area. >> an elderly gentleman, most unhelpful tourist board member i have met. i was interrupting his day. >> anyone looking for information is supposed to be able to get it here in this wooden hut. but these wasps are the only sign of life inside. given the state of the route, it's lucky ian scott is a passionate off-road cyclist. we take them for a spin. there are some clear dangers here with old, damaged bridges leading straight into thick mud.
ian is cautious around the stagnant water. >> no alligators are snakes. >> is that a question? >> i don't know. i could not see any. >> this is a bird sanctuary area. the cycle track was not a sufficient distance from the lake as required by the you, but directly next to the water. even under water in places. have millions provided by the eu been sunk? >> someone somewhere needs to be brought to task about it. we have not spent the money wisely. i've seen projects in britain that cost a lot less than a million euros and are 10 times better than this. >> the cycle track was supposed
to be built because visitors cannot swim in the lake due to the sewage. sometime ago, there was a beach bar here, brimming with activity, but now, it's a ruin. even a lakeside pool could not attract tourists. many in the region did nothing to stop the decay, but were happy to keep the money -- let the money keeps flowing from brussels, but stephan had enough. he himself has gone into local politics. >> someone has to take responsibility for this. this bike path is the perfect example of how everything is kept secret around here. they have kept it out of the media for years so that no one would know what is going on. those who knew kept quiet.
>> not her. claudia is dedicated to landscape conservation. she has her he hear from her office to the scene of the crime. coincidently, a couple of tourists arrive right behind her and do not seem surprised by our cameras or by the fact that the cycle path is practically cut off. >> surely some european union inspectors or functionary could have a look at this. we have to find out where all this eu money has gone. >> it's clear they think eu funding has not just been wasted but ended up in the wrong hands. tourists may wait through the bog, but can you imagine an eu inspector doing so?
>> i don't think they have ever come to see what has actually happened to it. why don't they go to the site? italy is carrying out around 40,000 projects with eu money, and that's too much for the eu inspectors and too much for the italian authorities, meaning there has been a critical oversight failure on several different levels. >> and it's only getting worse. another 1.8 million euros have been applied for in brussels to finish the cycle track, but underwater. >> and that brings us to the end of this edition of "european journal" from brussels. thank you very much for watching. we do hope you will join us again next time. until then, auf wiedersehen and bye for now. captioned by the national captioning institute --www.ncicap.org--
steves: a selection of ferries make the 50-mile crossing between helsinki and tallinn nearly hourly. because of the ease of this delightful two-hour cruise and the variety a quick trip over to estonia adds to your nordic travels, pairing helsinki and tallinn is a natural. stepping off the boat in tallinn, the capital of estonia, you feel you've traveled a long way culturally from finland. its a mix of east and west. tallinn's nordic lutheran culture and language connect it with stockholm and helsinki, but two centuries of czarist russian rule and nearly 50 years as part of the soviet union have blended in a distinctly russian flavor. fins and estonians share a similar history. first, swedish domination, then russian. then independence after world war i. until 1940, the estonians were about as affluent as the fins, but then estonia was gobbled up by an expanding soviet empire
and spent the decades after world war ii under communism. when the ussr fell, estonia regained its freedom, and in 2004, it joined the european union. tallinn has modernized at an astounding rate since the fall of the soviet union. its business district shines with the same glass and steel gleam you'll find in any modern city. yet nearby are the rugged and fully intact medieval walls, and the town within these ramparts has a beautifully preserved old-world ambiance. among medieval cities in the north of europe, none are as well preserved as tallinn. the town hall square was a marketplace through the centuries. its fine old buildings are a reminder that tallinn was once an important medieval trading center. today it's a touristy scene, full of people just having fun. through the season, each midday, cruise-ship groups congest the center as they blitz the town in the care of local guides. like many tourist zones,
tallinn's is a commercial gauntlet. here there's a hokey torture museum, strolling russian dolls, medieval theme restaurants complete with touts, and enthusiastic hawkers of ye olde taste treats. woman: [ laughs ] steves: but just a couple blocks away is, for me, the real attraction of tallinn -- workaday locals enjoying real freedom and better economic times. still-ramshackle courtyards host inviting cafés. bistros serve organic cuisine in a chic patina of old-world-meets new. and just outside the walls, it seems there's no tourism at all. under towering ramparts, the former moat is now a park, perfect for a warm afternoon stroll.
looking for answers. the world waits for word on why the malaysia airlines plane went down in ukraine. securing resources. papua new guinea finds itself posed to profit from demand for liquid natural gas. >> help wanted, japanese companies seek workers with international communication skills and a global perspective. thanks for joining is. i'm minori takao. >> first, the stories that made headlines across asia this week. investigators are searching for clear reasons why a malaysia airlines