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Dateline: 1 September 2006

Story #1

Pre-Listening Vocabulary

Story #1: Israel and Hezbollah Agree to UN Cease-Fire
A UN cease-fire to end the war between Israel and Hezbollah was agreed upon a month after fighting began in the Middle East. While the date was set for Monday, August 14th, UN Secretary-General, Kofi Annan, urged the fighting to stop . Despite his plea, both sides battled even harder in the hours before the causing major casualties. As part of the agreement, Hezbollah to surrender arms in southern Lebanon so that Lebanese and UN troops can take its place along the . Refugees began to head home within hours of the cease-fire, many finding their towns in ruins.

Comprehension Questions: Story #1

  1. Which group arranged for the fighting to end?
  2. What happened on August 13th?
  3. Besides stopping the attacks, what must Hezbollah do to honour the cease-fire?
Discussion Question:
Some people are calling the cease-fire a bandaid solution. That means they don't think it will last very long. Do you agree? Why or why not?

Story #2

Pre-Listening Vocabulary

Story #2: Major Terror Plot Busted
A major terror targeting the airline industry was busted this month, causing extensive delays and anxiety for travellers. Investigators say terrorists were in the final of their plan to bomb at least eight airplanes heading from the UK to the US. Airports around the world were put on the highest alert, and were prohibited from bringing liquids and electronic devices in carry-on bags. Terrorists were allegedly planning to use a camera or iPOD to detonate liquid bombs. 24 people were taken into custody in Pakistan and the UK in the raid. 2 martyrdom were seized as evidence.

Comprehension Questions: Story #2

  1. What major event caused air travellers to become nervous about flying this month?
  2. Where would the targeted airplanes have been going to and from?
  3. What items were travellers restricted from bringing in their hand luggage?
Discussion Question:
Do you think this incident will change the rules for carry-on luggage permanently? Is this an inconvenience you are willing to accept for long-term safety?

Story #3

Pre-Listening Vocabulary

Story #3: Arrest in Child Beauty Queen Murder
a decade after one of America's most publicized murder cases, a suspect was arrested in the killing of JonBenet Ramsey. John Karr was arrested in Bangkok this month where he worked as a teacher. Karr to being at the child beauty queen's death though he called it an accident. Despite Karr's confession, many feared his admission was not legitimate. Karr's claimed he was with her at the time of the murder. She also suggested he was with the details of child murder cases. Before a trial could begin DNA evidence proved that Karr was not involved.

Comprehension Questions: Story #3

  1. How long ago did the murder take place?
  2. What type of profession did the suspect work in and where?
  3. Why isn't this case going to trial?
Discussion Question:
Why do you think some people confess to crimes they did not commit?

Story #4

Pre-Listening Vocabulary

Story #4: New Solar System has 8 Planets
After intense talks this month the International Astronomical Union stripped Pluto of its status as a classic planet. The group of astronomers met to discuss adding or removing celestial bodies from the solar system. Defining the term "planet" was at the top of the . Keeping Pluto, and adding two new bodies, Xena and Charon, seemed to be the most outcome. However, when put to a final , all three were excluded. The new definition requires that a planet be the dominant body in its orbit. Since Pluto's orbit that of Neptune's it was demoted to a "dwarf planet".

Comprehension Questions: Story #4

  1. What major announcement was made this month?
  2. What did most people think was going to be decided?
  3. How did the definition of a classic planet change?
Discussion Question:
Some argue that without Pluto (discovered in 1930), the magic of the solar system is lost. How important is the accurate classification of celestial bodies?

ANSWER CHECK

Story #1

Story #1: Israel and Hezbollah Agree to UN Cease-Fire
A UN proposed cease-fire to end the war between Israel and Hezbollah was agreed upon a month after fighting began in the Middle East. While the date was set for Monday, August 14th, UN Secretary-General, Kofi Annan, urged the fighting to stop immediately. Despite his plea, both sides battled even harder in the hours before the deadline causing major casualties. As part of the agreement, Hezbollah is required to surrender arms in southern Lebanon so that Lebanese and UN troops can take its place along the border. Refugees began to head home within hours of the cease-fire, many finding their towns in ruins.

Comprehension Answers: Story #1

  1. The United Nations organized the cease-fire.
  2. On August 13th, both sides fought harder than they had before.
  3. Hezbollah must give up their weapons in Southern Lebanon to allow other troops to take control of the border.

Story #2

Story #2: Major Terror Plot Busted
A major terror plot targeting the airline industry was busted this month, causing extensive delays and anxiety for travellers. Investigators say terrorists were in the final stages of their plan to bomb at least eight airplanes heading from the UK to the US. Airports around the world were put on the highest alert, and travellers were prohibited from bringing liquids and electronic devices in carry-on bags. Terrorists were allegedly planning to use a camera or iPOD to detonate liquid bombs. 24 people were taken into custody in Pakistan and the UK in the initial raid. 2 martyrdom videos were seized as evidence.

Comprehension Answers: Story #2

  1. A terrorist plan to blow up airplanes was prevented.
  2. The targeted planes would have been heading to the US from the UK.
  3. Travellers weren't allowed to bring any liquid or electronic devices in their carry-on bags.

Story #3

Story #3: Arrest in Child Beauty Queen Murder
Nearly a decade after one of America's most publicized murder cases, a suspect was arrested in the killing of JonBenet Ramsey. John Karr was arrested in Bangkok this month where he worked as a teacher. Karr admitted to being present at the child beauty queen's death though he called it an accident. Despite Karr's confession, many feared his admission was not legitimate. Karr's ex-wife claimed he was with her at the time of the murder. She also suggested he was obsessed with the details of child murder cases. Before a trial could begin DNA evidence proved that Karr was not involved.

Comprehension Answers: Story #3

  1. The murder happened almost ten years ago.
  2. John Karr was a teacher in Bangkok.
  3. DNA evidence showed that John Karr is innocent even though he confessed to the murder.

Story #4

Story #4:New Solar System has 8 Planets
After intense talks this month the International Astronomical Union stripped Pluto of its status as a classic planet. The group of 2500 astronomers met to discuss adding or removing celestial bodies from the solar system. Defining the term "planet" was at the top of the agenda. Keeping Pluto, and adding two new bodies, Xena and Charon, seemed to be the most probable outcome. However, when put to a final vote, all three were excluded. The new definition requires that a planet be the dominant body in its orbit. Since Pluto's orbit crosses that of Neptune's it was demoted to a "dwarf planet".

Comprehension Answers: Story #4

  1. It was announced that Pluto is no longer a "planet" in our solar system.
  2. Most people thought Pluto would remain a planet and that two additional planets would join the solar system.
  3. According to the new definition, a "planet" must be the most notable celestial body in its orbit.