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tv   Journal  PBS  August 23, 2010 5:00pm-5:30pm PST

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>> this is "the journal" on dw- tv. i am in berlin. >> and i have the business news. >> germany's finance minister reviews plans about the armed forces. and you and says millions face hunger in pakistan after the worst floods in the country's history -- the u.n. says that. the german defense minister has unveiled plans to reform the country's armed forces. he is proposing cutting them by
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about one-third and more less and the conscription, relying on a purely professional army. he says the reforms will make the german army smaller but more >> one target of the defense minister's proposed cuts are these fast and flexible, well- arms tanks, which were developed during the cold war to protect against the soviet union, but the vehicles are not so suitable for missions abroad, and they are among the casualties in the plan. >> this plan will clearly show that at the end of the day, the army will be downsized, but it also will become better and more effective. >> the proposal includes reducing troop numbers by about 1/3, down to about 160,000. it would be the most dramatic reform of them since it was founded in 1955. compulsory military service would no longer be necessary. under the plan, it would be
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suspended. >> we will not completely abolished military service because we do not know what challenges lie ahead. >> but to get the plans through, the defense minister also has to win over the government, and there is considerable resistance from some members. >> well, earlier, we spoke to our political correspondent and asked him to tell us more about the plan and whether he will get support for them. >> well, the defense minister was asked to draw up proposals to make them more efficient, more cost-effective, and he came up with no less than five alternative proposals. the difficulty is that although he himself favors one particular plan, all of these are intended to form only the basis of discussion. chancellor merkel nothas made it clear that she will not do anything until the end of
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august, but in the meantime, this is likely to produce some vigorous and not back but acrimonious debate. the gutenberg favors one of these proposals. it involves, as you mentioned, stop the conscription and going to a professional army. his starting point is to save money. that is not likely to have in this case. you do not have to look further than france to see that professional armies became more expensive than conscription armies. they say it will help the national obligations better, and that come in the end, could carry the day. >> in other news, a hostage drama in the philippines has ended after police shot the man did it in manila. several people were killed as they stormed after a standoff lasting several hours. the gunman was a former policeman who had been fired. >> it was a dramatic scene in
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manila as the long standoff finally came to an end. the whole thing was broadcast live on national television. then, news emerged that the gunman had been killed. police were able to get out some of the remaining hostages. earlier, police swarmed the bus and tried to get the hostages and the gunman. there was a live radio interview where he said he knew he would be killed, and he was prepared to do the same with the tourists on the bust. police were seeking to negotiate with the gunman who was identified as a former policeman who was angry about being fired from his job and demanded reinstatement he originally released nine hostages, including women and children, but the situation escalated as the day wore on. now, they are trying to care for the hostages and piece together what happened. >> and rescue workers in chile have made contact with minors in
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the contract underground for weeks. rescuers and families are overjoyed that all of the men survived the collapse of the gold and copper mine. a small video camera shows images of them in their refuge nearly 700 meters below the surface. engineers say it will take many weeks to drilling shaft wide enough to bring up the men. at least 36 people have been killed in three separate bomb blasts in pakistan. there was a suicide blast in south waziristan that killed the son and wounded others. in another area, a bomb exploded at a meeting of tribal elders. there was also an explosion at a market. the attacks are blamed on taliban.insurgents. meanwhile, hundreds of thousands of people have been evacuated from large areas of eastern
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punjab, also underwater. although aid is coming into the country, it is still not reaching all of those in need. >> the floods have wiped away crops, homes, and the livelihoods of millions of people. 640 million euros in age. international relief is arriving in the form of generators, tents, and water pumps, but the loss of transportation is making the distribution difficult. >> 80,000 households or families throughout in the next couple of weeks. some 10,000 plus. >> some 6000 people are homeless. this is a southern city, but at least 800,000 people have no roofs over their heads.
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>> we did not get any help from anyone. when things look as bad if we had help, this woman asks. only god can help us, she says. and in some places, villagers are opting to stay near their homes for fear of losing what little they have left. >> let's take a look at the economic impact of all of this. >> you can see the devastation there. ban ki-moon has been there to see it himself. united nations has been involved, and we have had a whole host of nations boosting their aid to the country. the international monetary fund in washington will be discussing the country's budget and economic prospects in light of this latest natural catastrophe. the economy was already fragile, and this makes the outlook even bleaker. >> it was a long and perilous journey for the aid convoy. the floodwaters of washed away roads and bridges.
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they have inundated hospitals and brought down power and phone lines. many parts of the country have run out of fuel. the floods are crippling the economy of pakistan. initial estimates put damages of about 12 billion euros. the international community has offered eight, but the country will probably need new loans for construction, and that will add to the mountain of debt for pakistan. in addition, its agriculture sector has been devastated by the floods. farming is the most important industry in pakistan, is employing more than half of the work force. it is estimated that one-third of the cotton harvest has been destroyed, and sugar production has also been hit hard. these are vital for it to service its foreign debt. relief he officials say reconstruction could take at least five years. a humanitarian disaster is now threatening to become an economic one, as well. >> well, there are clear signs
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that the german government is making progress in reforming the banking sector. on wednesday this week, the cabinet will be looking to pass over -- legislation dealing with the way banks do business to ensure that they are responsible when things go belly up in the financial world. >> it has been almost two years since the u.s. investment bank lehman brothers went bust. what followed was a worldwide banking crisis and unprecedented spending by governments to keep the financial system afloat. and it was the taxpayer who ended up footing the bill. germany's new law aims to prevent a repeat of that situation. the banking organization law will include a bank levee, which will be paid into a crisis fund to finance emergency aid to banks. the law also regulate the closure of failed banks, even allowing the state banking watchdog to close down banks in extreme cases.
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the government wants to get the law through parliament by the end of this year, well ahead of the european commission, which presents its reform proposals next spring. good news for europe's largest economy, germany could end the year with its lowest unemployment level in almost two decades. that is according to a forecast. it estimates that the jobless total could dip a to 3.2 million in 2010. that would be one-quarter of 1 million less than last year. that group cites the strong economic recovery in germany. the organization recently raised the economic growth forecast to to 3.4%, and it expects small and middle-sized businesses to lead the way in job creation. well, stocks in europe have closed on monday. we have this report from the frankfurt stock exchange. >> many shares gaining, but
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there is new banking legislation coming in germany, and it will probably be that the state could transfer its sign the partnership into equity. what does that mean? that means that in order to get money back, the state could just create a whole lot of new shares. that would water down the investment of the present shareholders, so the shares are going down. those shares suffered under the nervousness that exists at the moment about the growth of the economy in the united states, the main worry here at the moment. >> and let's take a look at some of the numbers. first of all, looking in frankfurt, where the dax closed at 6010, the euro is up. -- the u.s. stocks is up. -- the euro stoxx is up. moving on, the swiss bank ubs
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has had its share of image problems, first its huge losses in the market 2008 and then it costly political battle with authorities in the united states for helping wealthy americans evade taxes, but now, the bank is moving into the fast lane, announcing a major deal to sponsor formula one. they say the sponsorship will be part of a new global campaign. ubs has largely been associated with a golf tournament and cross-country skiing. a change of pace there, i think you could say. >> what and germany's main opposition leaders has announced he will take a six-week break from politics for political -- medical reasons. he says he is donating one of his kidneys to his wife. >> his wife has long suffered from kidney problems. her husband says her condition has worsened considerably in recent months, making an
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operation necessary. >> we have that medical advice that the only real way forward is an organ transplant. given the lack of positive test results so far, i will, myself, be the donor. >> his wife supported him when he ran for chancellor against a glimmer " -- chancellor angela merkel. >> i am optimistic, and many medical experts we have consulted say that there will be no repercussions for me after the transplant. >> some 3000 guinea transplants are performed in germany every year.
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most take place without complications. during his absence, his duties will be taken over by one of his duties. chancellor merkel is said to have called to wish it well. >> possible negligence charges after the death of two newborn babies at a city university hospital. another new board is in critical condition, and eight others are sick after receiving nutritional infusions that were contaminated with bacteria. >> intravenous feedings have to be prepared with great care. infusion's solutions are mixed in special clean rooms, but here at the university clinic, it appears that an infusion was contaminated, leading to the death of two newborns. and they are investigating. >> we will be investigating
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those parts of the apparatus both in and outside the university medical department that came into contact with human staff rather than robots. >> the fecal pathogen is thought to have caused the deaths on the intensive care ward may have entered the solutions through contaminated tubes. of the 11 babies to receive the tainted infusions, two died, and one is in a critical condition. the problem was actually detected by the hospital daily quality control, but by then, it was too late. >> there is a world that the infusion solution should be administered immediately after preparers, and that means the result can only be determined after the fact -- there is a worlrule. >> the investigation will be tried to determine whether poor hygiene is responsible for the deaths.
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>> tiger woods and his wife elin have divorced after nine months since the scandal. they released a statement. tiger woods admitted to a series of affairs and took a break from golf for several months. travelers stuck in a massive troubles problem for nine days near the chinese capital of beijing are finally on the move. the jam on the stretch of the expressway connecting the capital to mongolia at one. stretched 100 kilometers. it started on august 14, when trucks began backing up because of construction work and heavy traffic. it took a coordinated effort from three regions to get it going again. can you imagine being stuck in a traffic jam for nine days? never again. a real traffic jam.
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we will be back in a moment. we will be taking a look at the treaty about the unification of germany.
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coo>> exclusive potus material. -- bonus material. >> welcome back. 20 years ago today, lawmakers and what was communist east germany made the decision that even a short time before would have been not thinkable. the constitution of west germany. the move effectively led to the demise of their own country. around six weeks later and less than one year after the fall of the berlin wall, the two germanies became one it, and east germany ceased to exist. others were critical of the process, but as we report, they then gained a momentum of their own. >> in november 99, we assumed
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everything would take a long time. >> a lot of people shared civil rights activists views until events overtook them. >> 294 have voted in favor of the motion. [applause] >>s later, they voted for unification with the federal republic of germany. one thing was already clear. there would be no new constitution. west german law would soon apply to the east, as well. >> many people, not only those in the east but in west germany, too, would have liked the unified germany to not be an enlarged republic, but something new, but there was not enough time. >> at first, unification looked to be a long way off, when the west german chancellor helmut kohl drew up his program on
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november 1989, he was talking about some sort of confederation without any timetable. three weeks later, on december 19, kohl made a visit. >> that night, the reactions of the people and the helplessness of another convinced us that unification could actually happen quickly after all. i think that day in dresden was crucial in our assessment of the situation. >> a flood of people were quitting the east, and there were also fears that soviet leader miguel borja of could be toppled. without his support, -- soviet leader gorbachev could be toppled. far reaching consequences. >> the west german government is prepared to enter into immediate
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negotiations with the east german government on monetary and economic union. >> del nikole influenced the outcome of the election by promising a rapid conversion of the currency. that was exactly what everyone was longing for. >> the election in 1990 was a great success for the alliance for germany, which is backed by gold christian democrats. it became the first freely elected prime minister. the economic and monetary union came into force on july 1, and unification talks started later. >> everything was difficult, but we got it done. >> both sides had the same aim, but we did not know how to get there. >> spenn in sport note -- an important sticking point, land
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taken over. >> they would refuse to budge on the appropriations. all of the members insisted that it should not be touched, and we had to accept that. >> the unification treaty gave new freedoms to the former east germans, but it also brought social and economic upheaval in its wake. >> all in all, i think it was the right decision. >> i am glad the nightmare is over. >> we have achieved the most important thing, a democratic country. >> will cover many of those who voted against the motion which would lead to unification with west germany were members of the communist party. the socialist unity party, the world east germany as a dictatorship for decades -- they
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ruled east germany. we follow up on what happened to the many smaller parties that grew out of the east german civil rights movement. >> in communist east germany, the sed was known solely as "the party." this footage came shortly before the berlin wall came down. she was a member of the party, but today, she heads up its successor, the left party korean at an exhibition in downtown berlin, she looks back at her party's history. -- the left party. at an exhibition in downtown berlin, she looks back at her party's history. >> it was a huge party. after the wall came down, an awful lot left.
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>> she stepped up to the plate, like another became a party leader. in a unified germany, the sed initially tried to hold onto its power and its assets, but to no avail. they have nothing in common with the old sed. >> the big difference with the left party is that we have parties in what was formerly koppel part of germany. we are no longer just an east german party. -- formerly part of germany. >> civil rights activists met senior officials for a round- table talks on the country's future. the people whose commitment had helped to topple the berlin wall, wanted a democracy. they call their grids no forum, democratic awakening, or democracy now. -- they called their groups hit
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new forum. -- their groups were called "new forum," "democratic awakening," or : democracy now," -- >> we learned a new ones. sometimes even a sentence could have an effect, and then, all of a sudden, we had to deal with people who learned that you have to be loud and clear and drastic if you want the public to take you seriously. >> parties in east germany started working with their western counterparts. social democrats from both sides of the border contested elections to the east german parliament in march 1990, as
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did the cristian and free democrats. strong support from christian democrats in the west propel them into power. a formal civil rights activist was proud, unlike many of his former colleagues, deciding to join the conservative cdu. >> i joined in february 1990 because i did not think the direction the grass roots groups had taken was realistic. they were not even capable of solving one single problem in eastern germany. >> he was a pragmatist and wanted to play a role in german politics and had more of a chance of doing that in the cdu. he is one of the few activists still involved in politics in an unified germany. >> the treaty. that was the focus of "in depth," marking 20 years of
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german unification. thank you for joining us, and join us again if you can. captioned by the national captioning institute
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