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Dateline: 1 December 2007

Story #1

Pre-Listening Vocabulary

Story #1: Political Trouble in Pakistan
Benazir Bhutto, who recently to Pakistan after eight years in exile, was placed on house arrest in early November. people were killed in an assassination attempt upon her return. The house arrest came shortly after President Musharraf issued a , blocking all media coverage, and preventing public gatherings. Surrounded by military, the opposition leader was unable to give talks about democracy. Bhutto was pressuring Musharraf to call a January election and retire as army chief. In mid November, police stopped and thousands of Bhutto's supporters taking part in a protest march from Lahore to Islamabad. Musharraf retired as army chief at the end of November.

Comprehension Questions: Story #1

  1. Who is Benazir Bhutto?
  2. What did Musharraf issue after the attempted assassination of Bhutto?
  3. What did Bhutto's supporters attempt to do in mid November?
Discussion Question:
Do you think political leaders should have the right to restrict public gatherings?

Story #2

Pre-Listening Vocabulary

Story #2: Alligator Joins Police Chase
A man was attacked and killed by an alligator this November as police searched for him on foot. The man had been breaking into cars on an reserve. He was trying to escape from police when he jumped into the pond by the reserve. A 9-foot alligator, known to nearby residents as Poncho, attacked and killed the man after he jumped into the pond. The robber likely did not see the sign warning of alligators in the water. Witnesses say the man tried to swim back to the shore once he saw the danger, but he was too late. The alligator was to a special facility to be examined. Under Florida law, the alligator has to be killed, because he caused the death of a .

Comprehension Questions: Story #2

  1. What was the Florida man doing before he jumped into the pond?
  2. What did the man likely not see before he jumped in?
  3. Why did the alligator have to be killed?
Discussion Question: Do you agree with the Florida law that alligators be destroyed if they kill a human? What about in this case?

Story #3

Pre-Listening Vocabulary

Story #3: British Teacher Jailed over Teddy Bear Incident
Gillian Gibbons, a teacher working in Sudan, was arrested and sentenced to 15 days in after allowing her class of 7-year-olds to name a teddy bear "Mohammed" as part of a school project. A court found Gibbons guilty of insulting the Islamic religion. Sudanese police formed a around the courthouse, preventing British journalists and officials from entering. it was first believed that the complaint came from a parent, it was later learned that a from the school reported the teddy bear name to authorities. Gibbons will likely be deported from Sudan after she serves her sentence.

Comprehension Questions: Story #3

  1. Who is Gillian Gibbons?
  2. How did Gibbons insult the Islamic religion?
  3. What will probably happen to Gibbons after she serves her jail time?
Discussion Question: British officials believe that Gibbons made an innocent mistake. Do you agree with the jail sentence? Why or why not?

Story #4

Pre-Listening Vocabulary

Story #4: Polish man Killed at Canadian Airport
A Polish immigrant was killed by police at the Vancouver airport outrage against the use of stun guns. 40-year-old Robert Dziekanski, who spoke no English, was waiting for his mother in the arrivals area for . It was his first time on an airplane and he became agitated and violent when no one was able to help. Four policemen arrived on the scene and shot Mr. Dziekanski with a stun gun. He fell to the screaming and died shortly after. The incident was caught on film by a witness at the airport, and released to the public.

Comprehension Questions: Story #4

  1. Why didn't Dziekanski ask for help at the airport?
  2. Who was Dziekanski waiting for?
  3. How did the international public get to see exactly what happened at the Vancouver airport?
Discussion Question: Shortly after this incident another Vancouver man died after he was shot with a Taser (stun gun). Do you think police officers should be allowed to use these guns?

ANSWER CHECK

Story #1

Story #1: Political Trouble in Pakistan
Benazir Bhutto, who recently returned to Pakistan after eight years in exile, was placed on house arrest in early November. 136 people were killed in an assassination attempt upon her return. The house arrest came shortly after President Musharraf issued a State of Emergency, blocking all media coverage, and preventing public gatherings. Surrounded by military, the opposition leader was unable to give scheduled talks about democracy. Bhutto was pressuring Musharraf to call a January election and retire as army chief. In mid November, police stopped and arrested thousands of Bhutto's supporters taking part in a protest march from Lahore to Islamabad. Musharraf retired as army chief at the end of November.

Comprehension Answers: Story #1

  1. Bhutto is the opposition leader in Pakistan who was formally in exile.
  2. President Musharaff issued a State of Emergency.
  3. Bhutto's supporters attempted to take part in a long protest march.

Story #2

Story #2: Alligator Joins Police Chase
A Florida man was attacked and killed by an alligator this November as police searched for him on foot. The man had been breaking into cars on an Indian reserve. He was trying to escape from police when he jumped into the pond by the reserve. A 9-foot alligator, known to nearby residents as Poncho, attacked and killed the man shortly after he jumped into the pond. The robber likely did not see the sign warning of alligators in the water. Witnesses say the man tried to swim back to the shore once he saw the danger, but he was too late. The alligator was taken to a special facility to be examined. Under Florida law, the alligator has to be killed, because he caused the death of a human.

Comprehension Answers: Story #2

  1. The Florida man was breaking into cars.
  2. The man likely did not see a sign that warned of alligators in the pond.
  3. Under Florida law any alligator that kills a human must be destroyed.

Story #3

Story #3: British Teacher Jailed over Teddy Bear incident
Gillian Gibbons, a British teacher working in Sudan, was arrested and sentenced to 15 days in prison after allowing her class of 7-year-olds to name a teddy bear "Mohammed" as part of a school project. A court found Gibbons guilty of insulting the Islamic religion. Sudanese police formed a human chain around the courthouse, preventing British journalists and officials from entering. While it was first believed that the complaint came from a parent, it was later learned that a secretary from the school reported the teddy bear name to authorities. Gibbons will likely be deported from Sudan after she serves her sentence.

Comprehension Answers: Story #3

  1. Gillian Gibbons is a British teacher working in Sudan.
  2. Gibbons allowed her students to name a class teddy bear "Mohammed".
  3. Gibbons will likely be deported back to Britain after her jail term.

Story #4

Story #4: Polish Man Killed at Canadian Airport
A Polish immigrant was killed by police at the Vancouver International airport causing outrage against the use of stun guns. 40-year-old Robert Dziekanski, who spoke no English, was waiting for his mother in the arrivals area for ten hours. It was his first time on an airplane and he became agitated and violent when no one was able to help. Four policemen arrived on the scene and shot Mr. Dziekanski with a stun gun. He fell to the ground screaming and died shortly after. The incident was caught on film by a witness at the airport, and later released to the public.

Comprehension Answers: Story #4

  1. Dziekanski didn't speak any English.
  2. He was waiting for his mother.
  3. A witness at the airport caught the incident on video.