tv Global 3000 PBS July 15, 2016 7:30pm-8:01pm PDT
narrator: this week on "global 3000," in honor of world refugee day, we focus on people who have had to flee their homes. we go to the mediterranean, where almost daily doctors without borders work to save migrants from certain death. we meet a banker who has set up a business to help refugees earn a living. and we tell the story of a boy from afghanistan whose greatest dream was to own a lionel messi football kit before he was forced to flee his country. since the dawn of man, people have fled violence and tried to find a better life in other lands. when bronze age tribes fought one another, the defeated were forced to uproot.
and in modern times, too, war, from the thirty years war through two world wars, has been the main catalyst driving migratory flows. factor in environmental disasters, starvation, and poverty and you get a dramatic rise in the number of refugees around the world. in 2015 there were more than 65 million. and their journey to safety is often fraught with danger. >> the big boat is coming right now, and we will rescue all of you. we'd like to ask you to be calm. reporter: the last minutes before the rescue are the most dangerous. many people drown with just meters to go. there's not enough fuel to reach europe, the rubber dinghies aren't seaworthy, and even in good weather, it's just a matter of time before they capsize.
the bourbon argos is one of three doctors without borders ships in the mediterranean. three days ago, it dropped off hundreds of refugees on sicily. now the rented ship is heading for the libyan coast. the ukrainian captain explains how slim chances are for the migrants. he says they only know what direction to go. no one understands how long it takes to cross the mediterranean. the rubber boats are not seaworthy and they sink. ruslan: usually this boat is sinking. reporter: high-energy food, water, and blankets for the next rescue mission. the international team consists of logistics specialists and doctors who've dealt with disasters. actually the aid organization only planned to use its operations to make the european governments feel guilty. rescue at sea isn't even on its agenda. but this hasty discussion on the bridge shows the doctors have to continue, because europe keeps
turning a blind eye. long before the bourbon argos reaches its position off libya, several ships with refugees on board head for it. henry: it's so difficult to plan these things, which is why there needs to be capacity at sea, and that's one thing that's sadly lacking at the moment. there are not enough boats with a search and rescue mandate operating in this area. reporter: an italian container ship pulls alongside. the dangerous transfer on the high seas can begin. the crew pulls the refugees on board. this footage show that the migrants are only really safe once they have made the leap onto the rescue ship. the helpful doctors are probably the first friendly people they've met since they began their flight across africa years ago. the central mediterranean route, the world's most dangerous for refugees, begins in libya. in the time since we boarded the
ship, more than a thousand people have lost their lives. the bourbon argos has taken on 604 refugees. the ship is bursting at the seams. the people who have fled poverty, dictators, and terrorists come from west africa, nigeria, senegal and mali. a group of senegalese we talk with has waited a full five years for this moment. michael blossom spent two years in libya earning money for the expensive passage, for himself, his small son david, and his pregnant wife laura. he was beaten, kicked, insulted. he says libya was pure hell. michael: the police would break into your house. the criminals would break into your house. they would rob you of everything. even the police, they were all criminals. so, this is what we have faced for the past two years. we have been facing this, and we can't wait any longer. so, that is why we have to take the risk. it's better to take a risk for once than remain in the risk forever.
reporter: palermo, sicily, whether the european continent will be the promised land for the refugees is questionable. the reality is that most of the west africans won't be granted asylum and will be deported. yet they've survived, because an aid organization doesn't want to let anyone die -- because the doctors without borders are doing a job europe's governments should be doing. for the helpless, cold, dehydrated people from west africa, the night on board the bourbon argos was the best 10 hours they've had in years. narrator: the list of countries people have fled over the past few years is long. but three are particularly affected. over a million people have fled somalia, over 2 1/2 million have left afghanistan, and nearly five million have escaped war in syria. the majority of syrian refugees now live in the neighboring
countries of turkey, lebanon, and jordan, often in desperate poverty. we learn about a banker who is determined to help ensure that at least a few of these people can earn some money. reporter: lanna idriss loves mathematics. she majored in law and islamic studies. all that helped her in her banking career. lanna: i aim for solutions and results. in the last 15 years of my career i've seen banking go from a highly respected professional field to the boogeyman of the nation, if not the world. reporter: since 2009 she's been head of compliance process management and outsourcing at the bhf bank in frankfurt, overseeing 120 employees. lanna: i'm very much a team player. i like being the boss, but it doesn't give me a feeling of power.
i think that's something i have difficulty developing anyhow, even though i see it happening all around me. i always try to use persuasion. if one plus one is two, then somehow that's clear and we can't do it any other way. reporter: lanna idriss was a business consultant when she was offered the management job at the bank. she says to this day that it was the right step, because it gives her time to help aid projects get going. lanna: it's a conservative bank, a very traditional bank, but it's also a family-oriented bank. even though i'm in a leadership position, it let's me reduce my workload to 90% which gives me -- the opportunity to help society. reporter: she devotes her days off to gyalpa. until a year ago it was an association. now it's also a company helping syrian refugee women. lanna idriss has syrian roots. her father comes from homs.
when the country plunged into chaos, she felt she simply had to help. she's turned her home into company headquarters. co-workers and friends lend a hand. and, of course, so does her son. on her website she sells handbags, towels, and accessories decorated with beautiful traditional embroidery. lanna: i'm holding a lovely, hand-embroidered piece. it comes from shatila refugee camp in beirut, which has existed since the 1950's -- 40,000 people crammed together in a square kilometer. we work with an organization called basmeh & zeitooneh, which means "a smile and an olive," to produce these items. i've just brought this back from beirut. reporter: in the past 12 months, she's been in the region five times. the syrian women who work for
her lead dangerous lives. lanna: we found out that two women who worked for us were arrested. the grounds were completely irrelevant. they were far-fetched in any case. one of the women has now been released, but the other hasn't. and that means we have to be extremely careful not to use their names, and if so, only the first name, and never pictures or photos on social media. reporter: in her spare room, she stores everything she brings back from her visits. 600 women work for gyalpa. the company guarantees it will buy everything they produce. one of her latest projects and products on the website are glasses from beirut. the artist who made them put
together the production facility himself. lanna: there's this syrian artist who collects old bottles with street children and makes glasses out of them. i asked how i could meet him and if anyone knew him. and i did meet him, and i saw these gorgeous glasses. they're all made out of old bottles, but you'd never know it. and then i thought, germans are so eco-friendly. surely, they will really like these. reporter: lanna idriss takes the packages with the towels, handbags, and glasses to the post office herself. that's soon set to change. lanna: i'm not unusual and if i can do this, so can lots of other people. i'm convinced of that. at some point, i realized that my life was incredibly full of time-wasters. let's start with the most simple thing -- turning on the tv and sitting in front of it for two or three hours. that's two or three hours that
could really do something useful for yourself and others. narrator: more than half of refugees around the world are under 18. many have suffered war and violence at home. whilst many flee with their families, some leave alone, forced to rely on their own wits to survive. in 2015, 98,400 unaccompanied minors applied for asylum, more than ever before. these girls and boys leave their families, their old lives, and friends behind, and often their dreams, too. reporter: when they fled, they took the jersey with them. not much more was left to them except the soccer superstar's present and the memories of a time when the entire family seemed to be near meeting the renowned footballer from argentina. murtaza proudly displays the
ball and jerseys he received from lionel messi. earlier, murtaza often gave such interviews. his uncle helped him to say what he wanted the world to hear, so that it wouldn't forget the small boy and his great dream. reporter: murtaza explains that he suddenly had to leave home, because he was in danger. now the family's in quetta. he doesn't feel good there. he wants to meet messi. quetta is over the border, in pakistan, where more than two million afghan refugees live. murtaza's family resettled here because they were receiving threats from fundamentalists, among others, saying murtaza should be emulating a mullah instead of messi. it started with such promise.
>> they said messi would meet murtaza, but it came to nothing. messi sent the ball and clothing, but that really made people angry and jealous of murtaza. we heard someone was planning to kidnap him, so we fled. reporter: a short while ago, murtaza played football on a square like this with his afghan friends. they were obsessed with professional soccer in europe. they'd actually never seen any of the stars in person. then a visit from the greatest of all seemed to be right around the corner. >> we're totally disappointed because messi didn't come to afghanistan. i figure he was frightened. no wonder, with all the attacks. you can't blame him.
reporter: it's not long ago that these pictures swept the internet -- murtaza in his makeshift plastic jersey. they were clicked millions of times, and murtaza became the mascot of afghan football. he attracted world attention to the large number of fans and talented players here. abdul: we hoped it would motivate talented youngsters to stay here and not leave the country, because that's what so many people do. there are scarcely any jobs here and no good youth programs. so many leave. reporter: ultimately, each of us must face our disappointments and unfulfilled dreams, such as missing the chance to meet our heroes. a neighbor was one of the last to see murtaza's family before they moved away. >> the boy was very disappointed. the afghan football federation
had promised to get him together with messi. i think that's why the family went away, because, for them, nothing changed for the better. reporter: and with each day, the chances diminish and there's less public interest. murtaza will soon be just one of the many refugee children. >> we've lost everything and have nothing here -- no house, no garden. but somehow i still hope murtaza's dream will be fulfilled and he'll meet messi. reporter: maybe a miracle will occur and the soccer player will drop by for dinner or fly the family out in an airplane to see him. messi is always good for a surprise on the pitch. and so murtaza's uncle prompts murtaza with words meant to touch the hearts of the world.
jodelin: i like fish. just about all kinds of fish, because fish contains lots of vitamins. jodelin: i'd like to move to canada, because i hope i'd have a better life and a better job than i do here. ♪ narrator: and now to our "global ideas" series. this is when we meet people committed to preserving biodiversity. every day, 100 different species become extinct. this time we head to russia, where there are huge areas of peatland, many of which have been drained.
but drained peat bogs are a fire hazard and release stored carbon into the atmosphere. our reporter kerstin palzer went to taldom, north of moscow. conservationists are working to rehydrate the peat bogs. kerstin: we're in one of the largest peatland regions north of moscow, an area of more than 40,000 hectares, about as big as the german city-state of bremen. biologist andrey sirin goes with us. he's been studying peatlands for more than 30 years and is considered one of the world's leading experts. the ground here is like a waterlogged sponge. andrey: peatlands cover only 3%
of the land surface in the world, but they make up the largest on earth -- and second on the planet, after oceanic deposits -- long-term storage of carbon. kerstin: but only half of russia's peat bogs are still intact. the rest were drained more than a hundred years ago, to make the land suitable for agriculture, and especially for the peat itself. it's estimated there are more than 150 billion tons of peat around moscow. and it's still extracted today for use as fuel or potting soil. drained peatlands present a permanent danger, because they're highly flammable. andrey sirin shows us footage from 2010, when there were wildfires that lasted weeks, burning down entire villages. people died. even in moscow, 100 kilometers away, people suffered under the huge cloud of smoke.
andrey: it make people, authorities and stakeholders responsible for this problem, and pressed them to keep attention on this. and the rewetting activities done in moscow is one of the results. kerstin: we drive to a field a few kilometers from the bog. here children and adults from the surrounding area are sowing grain. in late summer, it will provide food for migrating cranes that stop here on their way south. most people now find it good that the large peat bog next to it is to be rehydrated, and that nature in general should be better protected. >> it's good that it's being done now, so it won't burn anymore and there'll be no more smoke. in 2010 we almost died.
kerstin: german and russian scientists are working together to rehydrate, or rewet, peatlands. dr. sirin cooperates closely with the ngo wetlands international and the university of greifswald. the scientists are studying what happens when peatlands are drained, because, as nastya markina emphasizes, the threat is a global one that affects us all. nastya: in general, peatlands accumulate carbon, and they store huge amounts of carbon. and if we drain it, then it just escapes and all what was collected during thousands of years just goes to the atmosphere. kerstin: that means peatlands are a huge source of greenhouse gases.
we go on the tver region, about 200 kilometers northwest of moscow. here, too, peat bogs have been rehydrated. it's quite simple. the ditches originally dug so that water would drain off have to be filled up again. the water then remains in the bog. now typical plant species are again growing here -- bog arum and cotton grass. a unique ecosystem has been restored. nature has returned to the peat bog. we even discover elk tracks in the soft ground. peat was extracted in the region well into the 1990's. after that, the bogs lay fallow and burned time and again. since the ditches were filled in
and the peat land rehydrated, the threat of fire has dropped. ilya: the water level here has risen. that's clearly visible. after two springs, with melting snow and rain, we've managed to keep the water in the bog. kerstin: the private sector is playing a role in this particular project. a building contractor is helping to fund rehydration. lenmar timofeyev has built houses near the bog. for a good million euros you can buy a villa here, including golf course access. but, of course, the well-heeled residents don't want to be bothered by clouds of smoke or fires. lenmar: our customers want to live in safety and comfort,
surrounded by fresh air. the peatland rewetting project is just what we needed, and we couldn't do it ourselves. so, we funded it. kerstin: i walk over the peat bog once more with andrey sirin. the rewetting project near moscow is the largest in the northern hemisphere, an international pilot project. the results show how rewetting doesn't just prevent fires but also prevents the release of more greenhouse gases. in the coming future the scientists want to work in russia's far north, in the huge peatlands of the permafrost regions. narrator: and that's all from "global 3000" for today. we're back next week, and, of course, we're always available online, too see you soon. [captioning performed by the
national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org] steves: in a nutshell, classical rome lasted about 1,000 years -- roughly 500 b.c. to 500 a.d. rome grew for 500 years, peaked for 200 years, and fell for 300 years. the first half was the republic, ruled by elected senators. the last half was the empire, ruled by unelected emperors. in its glory days, the word "rome" meant not just the city, but what romans considered the entire civilized world. everyone was either roman or barbarian. people who spoke latin or greek were considered civilized, part of the empire. everyone else, barbarian. according to legend, rome was founded by two brothers, romulus and remus.
abandoned in the wild and suckled by a she-wolf, they grew up to establish the city. in actuality, the first romans mixed and mingled here -- in the valley between the famous seven hills of rome. this became the roman forum. in 509, they tossed out their king and established the relatively democratic roman republic. that began perhaps history's greatest success story, the rise of rome. from the start, romans were expert builders, and they had a knack for effective government. this simple brick building was once richly veneered with marble and fronted by a grand portico. it's the curia. the senate met here and set the legal standards that still guide western civilization. the reign of julius caesar, who ruled around the time of christ, marked the turning point between the republic and the empire. the republic, designed to rule a small city-state,
found itself trying to rule most of europe. something new and stronger was needed. caesar established a no-nonsense, more-disciplined government, became dictator for life, and, for good measure, had a month named in his honor, july. the powerful elites of the republic found all this change just too radical. in an attempt to save the republic and their political power, a faction of roman senators assassinated caesar. his body was burned on this spot in 44 b.c. the citizens of rome gathered here, in the heart of the forum, to hear mark antony say, in shakespeare's words, "friends, romans, countrymen, lend me your ears. i've come to bury caesar, not to praise him." but the republic was finished, and rome became the grand capital of a grand empire. the via sacra, or sacred way, was the main street of ancient rome.
it stretched from the arch of septimius severus to the arch of titus. rome's various triumphal arches, named after the emperors who built them, functioned as public-relations tools. reliefs decorating the various arches show how war and expansion were the business of state. rome's thriving economy was fueled by plunder and slaves won in distant wars.
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