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tv   Witness History  BBC News  April 28, 2019 10:30am-11:00am BST

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dean's father raised the sunken sherman tank which new forms a permanent memorial. we have the incredible sacrifice that the local people made to give up their home and their land, and at the same time, this horrendous disaster that took so many young lives. on the beach below, 749 sets of bootprints. a powerful way to remind us of a loss of life which far exceeded the figure on the real utah beach just over a month later. that loss of life went beyond the 700 because in another stage of exercise tiger hundreds more americans were killed in a friendly fire went live and practice landings came together —— went live ammunition and practice landings came together. the ceremony will remember that and those footsteps,
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as we pointed out, are a poignant reminder. they've been made by a charity called remembered and the process will be repeated on the beaches at normandy in a couple of weeks‘ time. beaches at normandy in a couple of weeks' time. thank you for that. now it's time for a look at the weather, here's matt taylor. a big day for runners in london? it certainly is. a little bit cool and fresh for spectators, but the wind is not as strong as yesterday. lots of cloud in eastern areas and cloud is thicker in the west with rain and drizzle in northern ireland and in pembrokeshire, devon and cornwall. a few showers in the south east, but in between the cloud will break up and it will feel warmer than yesterday with the sunshine on
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you. tonight we will see some clearer skies, light winds and turning chilly in eastern parts. a touch of frost with mist and fog here and there. not as cold in the west because of the cloud, patchy rain and drizzle to start your monday morning. the drizzle will nudge its way westwards. much of scotland, england and eastern wales have a dry day and mist and fog clears with sunny spells and highs of around 18.
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hello, this is bbc news. the headlines... a woman is shot dead and three people are injured at a synagogue in california. police are questioning a 19—year—old man who they say opened fire with an assault rifle. as the officer was placing this 19—year—old male into custody, he clearly saw a rifle sitting on the front passenger seat of the suspect vehicle. britain's fracking tsar quits after six months in thejob. natascha engel says ministers are paying too much attention to a small but noisy environmental lobby. security fears in sri lanka has lead to church services being cancelled a week after easter suicide bombings by islamist militants killed
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more than 250 people. now on bbc news it's time to witness history. here's razia iqbal. hello, this is witness history at the royal academy in london. today, we have some more extraordinary moments from the recent past told to us by the people who were there. in this programme, we are going to hear how women finally got the vote in switzerland in 1971 and talk to one of the first people to fly nonstop around the world in a hot air balloon. we have the incredible story of an african—american engineer who got stuck in the ussr and speak to some of the founders of a community in israel set up to promote peaceful coexistence betweenjews and arabs.
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let's began in china, where in the 1970s, scientists discovered a cure for malaria. what was incredible was the discovery was based on a fourth century chinese herbal remedy. this professor told us how they found the cure. one of man's mortal enemies... 90% of all malaria cases are in africa. in the americas and asia, malaria has re—emerged in drug—resistant forms. translation: in the 19605 and early 705, there was a serious outbreak of malaria. the drug available at the time was chloroquine, but resistance to it was already very strong. chairman mao said the population of china had survived for thousands of years relying on traditional
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chinese medicine. he said there must be a traditional cure for malaria. he told us to find it. could a drug based on an ancient chinese remedy really defeat malaria? in 1969, i was assigned to research a cure for malaria and the great chemist tu youyou was our leader. i had malaria myself when i was a child. it makes you feel really cold, your whole body shivers, then you get a fever and a terrible headache. it's very painful. there was no money for this research because the whole country had economic problems. most of our equipment was old. we only had a few basics, like test tubes and bottles. but our slogan was we are going forward with or without
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the ideal conditions. tu youyou had already made a list of all the chinese herbal medicines for treating malaria that were recorded in ancient books and folklore. we tested hundreds of herbal remedies over and over again until our focus was drawn to just the one, sweet wormwood, or artemisinin. we knew it was noisily effective, but it was inconsistent so we had to work out why. tu youyou had a breakthrough. she went back to the ancient texts and found the description in a medical handbook. it's hundreds of years old. it said take a handful of sweet wormwood, immerse it in water and then wring out the juice and drink it all, and this gave her the idea to try a cold method of extracting the medicinal properties from the plant.
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we conducted 190 experiments using this plant. and it was the 1915t that worked. we couldn't believe our eyes. everyone was so excited. all our hard work had finally paid off. next, we had to make sure it was safe for humans to take. tu youyou said, "i'm the leader of the team, i should be the first to try this medicine," and i also volunteered. i said, "we should not expect other people to test whether it's dangerous," so we tested the drugs over several days. and the result was we all felt fine. there were no bad side effects, except the pill itself didn't taste very nice. this 11—year—old boy has the disease. so he's given his first
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dose of artemisinin. the next morning, the artemisinin has worked. translation: a gift from traditional chinese medicine, it saved millions of lives all over the world. the professor on the life—changing chinese drug artemisinin. next to switzerland. unlike most of europe, in the 1950s, switzerland still had not given women the vote. but in 1959, there was a referendum on whether the law should be changed. but as former swiss president ruth dreifuss explains, the voters in that referendum were all men. i remember one mp in the mountain who said, "well, the woman has to stay in the kitchen as the cow
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has to stay in the stable." the women had fought for 100 years and more for their political rights in switzerland. swiss men vote very often, because under the constitution, nearly all important measures have to be decided by the people, by direct referendum. in the year 1959, we had a vote on the political rights of the women. and i think there was a great hope to have a positive answer from the men who were invited to this ballot. do you think that women should have the vote? yes, i do, because as men, we must honestly confess, women are as intelligent as we are and i see no right to take the vote away. does your husband think women ought to vote? he does not mind, but he is not very much for it.
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he doesn't think women have the intelligence perhaps? no, perhaps he does not. but you do? i certainly do. we demonstrated in the streets. we went to the capital and put on a long demonstration because it was so obvious that women should be allowed to participate, but the arguments against it, they were very strange, let's say. i think it's an unnecessary luxury for the state because women's vote is expressed through their husbands anyway. as far as i'm concerned, i think it's against nature because women are supposed to do the housekeeping, education education of their child and if she does that properly, she will probably not have any time to be interested in politics or things like that. i was 19 years old, so i was really hoping that the entering in adult life a year later, i would be exactly treated as my brother was. music.
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but this was not the case. we saw that two thirds of the swiss men had refused this. for me, the 12 years between ‘59 and ‘71 are really my personal years of emancipation. i was fighting for political rights, but it was also the time i studied, the time i entered the trade union, the time i entered a political party. ‘71 was a very important date because this was the proposal now to introduce clearly the political rights for women.
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we now think that the vote in ‘71 was in the same year than the first election where women could enter into the parliament, and that 11 of them were elected because we women wanted to have our representatives in parliament, was really for me i would say probably the most important ten years, or 12 years, in my life. ruth dreifuss on herfight for the right to vote. in 1999, brian jones and bertrand piccard made the first nonstop round the world flight in a hot air balloon, taking off from switzerland and finishing over africa. the record—breaking trip tookjust 20 days. pilot brianjones recalls the highs
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and lows of their amazing journey. it is an incredibly difficult thing to achieve, to get a balloon to fly around the world. this had never been done before. and yet it was the oldest form of flight. and there was a kind of empty page in the history books. it was the ultimate challenge for ballooning. the morning of take—off was difficult in many ways, actually, because we didn't know what was going to happen. and of course, we couldn't fly out around the world in a basket, not at the altitudes we were thinking of. so we needed a pressurised capsule. we tried to make things as comfortable as possible. so, this is breakfast on the 11th
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of march at 8am in the morning. we had a little modesty curtain where the toilet was in the back of the capsule and we would go behind the curtain and wipe ourselves down with these baby wipes. but the first 11 days, which took us out beyond taiwan, the balloon performed really well. and we were very happy with it. i think that was the most satisfying time that i found in the whole flight. where i felt that i can make this thing dance. then things started to go wrong. we lost communications. we lost three of our six burners. and then the third thing was the issue of looking ahead at these storms and seeing them there, not knowing how high they were and not knowing whether we would actually fly into them. because we were pushing the balloon as high as we possibly could, we lost our heating system.
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now, everything was covered in ice, inside and outside. we were terrified, actually. we're still nearly 2000 miles away from hawaii. so, we're right out in the middle of nowhere and not going very fast. it was not an easy situation for those four or five nights over the pacific. when we got communications back, it was a huge relief. we'd manage to get across the pacific exactly as luke, our meteorologist, said this jet stream wind was borne and life was getting a little better for us. the balloon, now travelling at around 90 mph, has climbed into the jet stream. air currents they hope will carry them to their target just beyond the african coast.
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and we were doing 160, 170 mph in a balloon, which is extraordinary. we were so excited. we've done it! yeah! it's fabulous! fantastic. so, we crossed the finish line, and our team said, "ok, get serious and we've got to get the balloon down in one piece." and so we came down and we landed in the middle of the egyptian desert with the final dregs of our fuel. we were just incredibly relieved, really tired. and i was kind of, i wasjust kneeling down feeling the sand and letting it run through my fingers and just thinking this is really cool. brianjones. remember, you can watch witness history every month on the bbc news channel or you can catch up on all our films along with more than 1000
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radio programmes online. just search for bbc witness history. now for something from the archives. in 1991, the bbc spoke to robert robinson, an african—american who'd been recruited to work in the ussr. he then got stuck there against his will for 50 years. this is his story. in december 1929, ifirst saw a group of russians. they went around for a while and then they spotted me. the leader of the group said, "would you like to come to soviet russia and teach our young people? " america was going through a great depression. all around me at the forge, people were being discharged. being a black man,
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i expected mine any day. being the provider for my mother, i said, "well, i'll go for one year and they were giving me more pay than i was earning." that's how come i went to the soviet union. i knew nothing about soviet russia. they would run up to me and say... he speaks russian. why are you so dark? my answer to them would be, "that's the way i was born." when my contract had gone, it was about ten months old, i was called and asked to stay another year. and since the depression was still on, i decided to stay another one year. one morning, i went to work as usual. there was a meeting going on selecting people
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for the moscow soviet. one man got up and said, "comrade, i have no other name than that of robert robinson." i was shocked. without my consent, against my will, i was never asked, here i was elected to the moscow soviet, a foreigner. after being elected to moscow city council, the americans took away my citizenship. i took soviet citizenship because there was no other way out. but i regretted it, and i will ever regret having done so. i felt threatened every day in my life. because the local men,
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as they told me many, many times, "you may have a soviet citizenship, but you're still a foreigner." i was being watched in my factory every day by five different people. i would be provoked for me to say something against the government or the system itself. i used to go to bed with my clothes on, ready for whenever the kgb came, i wouldn't need to get dressed. i never allowed myself to become lonely. i listened to the bbc. if i am at home on sundays, all day long, and i would put the music on, take a chair as my lady and dance.
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robert robinson, the african—american engineer who got stuck in the ussr. in 1986, a small community called wahat al salaam — neve shalom was founded by four families, both jews and arabs, on a hilltop betweenjerusalem and tel aviv. it was an experiment in peaceful coexistence in the middle east. four decades on, it's home to more than 60 families. two of its long—standing residents spoke about life in the oasis of peace. this is a remarkable picture. tom and feda are two ten—year—olds who share a desk at school. they're friends. feda is an arab and tom a jew. there the product of a place called neve shalom.
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it's hebrew for "oasis of peace". the community was formed by four families, one palestinian family and three jews. we wanted to try to live in all alternative way. jews and palestinians together in equality, in one piece of land. i'm an israeli jew and i came to live in neve shalom in 1979. i'm a palestinian arab. i'm a resident of wahat al salaam. it was a very small, tiny community. there was no trees, no running water, no connection to electricity, but we had the big dreams.
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here we found hope and we wanted to start a life with people who are enlightened, who are accepting of us as who we are. when we came, of course there were some questions about our youthful views, are you going to be in some kind of utopian society where it's not really realistic? and i said, "maybe, but you know, we hope it's going to teach others that it's actually possible and that this is why we are here." although only 15 families live at neve shalom, 7000 teenagers have passed through attending its peace workshops. some had never met a member of the opposite community until they came here. it's really powerful to see a moment of change. really, people realised that what they said before, it's not the reality. and we learned a lot. this is how we started the school for peace.
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the different events that took place outside the village, like the intifada, like the war in gaza, initiated a lot of talk and discussions and debates. my youngest daughter, for instance, her opinion on the issue of army service for the jewish israelis, here it is compulsory service, you cannot say no. she said that i expect all people who come to be part of this community, part of this project here in neve shalom, not to serve in the army. but i know this is something, these are easy words to say on our part. and i know it's extremely difficult for the other side. yeah, my three kids went to the army but not to be combat soldiers because they didn't want to fight to be soldiers. when i see the children playing
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together, laughing together, crawling together, it feels good. the majority of the kids that are studying here, they are not wahat al salaam — neve shalom kids, they're from outside. yeah, their parents wanted to have our kind of education, this exposure to the other side at an early age. and it shows the effectiveness of this community. it's a working model of almost 40 years that we are here. and it can work. the pioneering experiment of wahat al salaam — neve shalom, which is still going strong. that's all from us at witness history this month. we're going to back next month with more first—hand accounts of extraordinary moments in history. but for now, from me and the rest of the witness history team, goodbye.
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good morning. sunday has certainly been a lot calmer than saturday was across uk, particularly in england, wales and northern ireland. today staying a lot less windy than it was. a bit of sunshine and cloud and the old shower. this swirl of cloud on the satellite image was storm hanna and has decayed over the southern north sea. cloud in the west, but it is hazy. thicker in ireland, western wales, devon and cornwall. a band of rain pushes its way eastwards. it makes its way over
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the channel islands mid afternoon. a few showers in east anglia and the south east. good sunny spells breaking through the cloud we have in many parts of england and wales and the midlands. a good seven or 8 degrees warmer than it was yesterday. eastern scotland seeing plenty of sunshine. with the wind is the lightest year, you will feel the benefit of that sunshine. a keen and cool breeze in eastern counties of england. overnight the wind will be light and we will see some cloud and mist and fog form. out towards the west thicker fog and rain. mist and fog form. out towards the west thickerfog and rain. in mist and fog form. out towards the west thicker fog and rain. in the far west in scotland, northern ireland, temperatures hold up. a chilly start in eastern scotland and northern and eastern england tomorrow. the weather front brings the rain and drizzle and it is in
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the rain and drizzle and it is in the same areas as we start on monday. it is a bit grey, but nothing too substantial. it pushes its way westwards during the day. varying amounts of cloud, some sunny spells and with wins light across the uk, once you get some sunshine, it will feel a touch warmer than today. 18 is the potential high. mist and fog in eastern areas on tuesday and that will clear. sunny spells for many. but outbreaks of rain arriving in northern ireland during the day. a little bit on the cool side here, but elsewhere temperatures could get up to between 16-20dc. it temperatures could get up to between 16—20dc. it will be the warmer half of the week because mid week things turn cooler again and a greater chance of showers mid week.
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this is bbc news. the headlines at 11:00am. a woman is shot dead and three people are injured at a synagogue in california. police are questioning a 19—year—old man. britain's fracking tsar quits after six months in thejob, blaming ministers for paying too much attention to the environmental lobby. from within, you can't do very much, and it means at the moment, when you have government in such terrible paralysis, you do have to do something as dramatic as this in order to have your voice heard. security fears in sri lanka sees church services cancelled, a week after more than 250 people were killed in the easter sunday bombings. thousands of runners are pounding the streets


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