tv BBC World News WHUT January 3, 2012 7:00am-7:30am EST
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>> the long, expensive, and unpredictable battle for the u.s. presidency gets under way with the iowa caucus. three republicans lead the race to take on barack obama in november. but have they got what it takes? >> we need someone who would give the economy moving again and get confidence built a backup in the people. >> hello, welcome to "gmt," with a world of news and opinion. a controversial new constitution is threatening their democracy. using virtual reality to combat stark reality. the philippines induces
compulsory training to combat somali pirates. it is midday in london, 1:00 p.m. in hungary, and 6:00 p.m. -- 6:00 a.m. in the state of iowa. republican voters get their chance to choose the candidate to face barack obama in the presidential elections. throughout tuesday, registered republicans gather in so-called caucuses, local gatherings in which they express their preferences. >> on the ice of iowa, a slow and arduous struggle to move in the right direction. for many, a thumbs up for obama's america. >> i feel like he made a lot of fat -- a lot of promises prior
to the election that have not come to fruition. he has not walked the walk. >> we need someone who would get the economy moving again and get confidence built back up in the people. >> this is a place where the hope and change of years ago has given way to disappointment and disillusionment with barack obama, giving republicans a very real shot at the white house in 2012. this baby might just have been autographed by the next u.s. president. >> i intend to make it because i've lived it. >> for many, mitt romney is not conservative enough. after shopping around, some have settled on the alternative, the socially conservative rick santorum. >> if you're looking for someone who can trust the authentic.
then there is ron paul, fighting to win in a small state that punches above its weight. >> iowa is not first because it is important, it is important because this first. it offers the chance to see what real, live members of a political party think about the candidates. >> in a few hours from now, this contest will have a much clearer sense of direction. >> for more analysis of the iowa caucus, i am joined in our studio by michael goldfarb. thank you for being with us. how important is this?
the first of many battles ahead? >> it is not that important to the ultimate fate of the nominee. four years ago, john mccain was expected to win the republican nomination, he fell behind in iowa, but in the end he did win the nomination. mitt romney may or may not win today. he will be close to the top of the leader board. in the end, many of these people will fade away, like newt gingrich did just before christmas. >> you are making a prediction there, are you? you think that rick santorum will fade away? >> he appears to be enjoying something of a surge. >> it is the nature of this campaign. so many republicans are ready to give you a shot.
a senator from pennsylvania, he is not someone who is going to end up as the republican presidential nominee. but he is going to be able to, for this 48 hour window, become the standard bearer for the social conservatives. they provide a tremendous amount of energy and focus on republican party politics. >> is there any one of these candidates -- i hear what you're saying about red santorum, but anyone of these candidates that could be feared more above the others? >> come next november, the
complex mechanism that is american society will sit down to make its decision. mitt romney stands the best chance of defeating president obama. there was a poll, late last week, showing that romney beating obama in a head-to-head match. in the past he has been much more of a centrist politician. he has not been that lately, he has had to be more extreme to get the republican grassroots. the people that throw the money into the race to make sure that there guy wins, will say that if i am going to spend several hundred million dollars backing of a candidate, why would i backup someone who is bound to lose?
they will look at mid rummy and say that he is the one. >> let's take a look at some of the other stories making headlines around the world today. a senegalese actor and activist is running for president. he announced his candidacy on his privately-owned television station after weeks of speculation over his plans. the military-backed government in burma has started releasing prisoners to mark independence day. they say that some sentences will be cut and death sentences commuted. opposition groups have expressed anger that there was no broader amnesty. there have been long lines outside a polling stations in each of for the third and final round of elections. 13 million people will cast their vote for the lower house
of parliament. israeli and palestinian negotiators will sit down to discuss the possibility of restarting stalled peace talks. it is their first meeting in more than a year, but the palestinian chief negotiator is playing down expectations. it is a country that played a key role in accelerating collapse of communism in europe. there are growing fears that there are threats to democracy established when the old communism fell. this new constitution places a strong emphasis on christianity, changing the judicial and electoral system in a way the critics say restricts
independence. here is our world is -- world affairs correspondent. >> a classical when varian setting, the budapest opera house, to usher in what the government says is a constitution to read it -- reinsert traditional hungarian values. the new laws rename the republic of hungary as just hungary. and the constitution consolidates government controls over the state media and the government bank, and it asserts traditional conservative values, like the rights of the unborn child against abortion. members of the parliamentary ruling party say that it is a landmark document. for the first time in hungary, a freely elected parliament has created a new constitution. tens of thousands of protesters
disagree. they say that hard-won freedoms are being limited. they gather outside the opera house. trade unionists were among them. >> the main problem with this is that it is destroying the old constitutional order. this new basic law is essentially a single party constitution. >> the prime minister is blamed for undermining checks and balances. and they say that he refuses majority to fast-track the introduction of new laws without enough debate. >> the whole thing is as if he was driving a bus towards an abyss, but only he can eject when the passengers are stock. >> international passengers are worried as well.
they're increasing the cost of hungarian debt. the international monetary fund were critical of the constitution. the economy could be the real battleground in the months to come. the central right government has promised to create new jobs, but so far failed. mark doyle, bbc news. >> i am joined from budapest by the minister of communications at the hon. justice ministry. thank you for being on "gmt." constitutions are supposed to be above politics, they are supposed to be timeless, but you have been accused of creating a document that is intensely political. >> the nature of the process is political. many in central europe have managed to get rid of the old communist constitution's.
now hungary is the last one. >> no one is doubting your right, what they are arguing about, and tens of thousands of people turned up on the street, you are producing a document that entrenches values of the right rather than producing documents that are all hungarian -- that all hungarians can rally around. >> the biggest christian democrat, with new fundamental laws, that is the democracy causeway. in i wanted to remind you that 23 years ago, it would have been impossible to call any kind of
rally. and >> let's take a look at a couple of examples. the european union is also worried about what the government has done as far as a central bank taking away some of the powers of the central bank governors. appointing his own deputies, for example. >> on the hungarian national bank, we have 15 concessions that were made by the central bank. >> why not allow the governor of the bank of hungary to appoint his own deputies? why do the politicians have to see it? >> it is not politics.
or if you like, politics at the end of the day. democracy is pretty natural, that we have all kinds of views on these different issues. >> all right. thank you again for being on "gmt." still to come, the cost of the gulf of mexico oil disaster. >> more than 100 bushfires have broken out in southern australia over the past 48 hours, stretching emergency crews to the limit. temperatures have risen to 40 degrees celsius, sparking a wave of files -- a wave of fires. the prime minister added her
voice to the warnings for people to be cautious. >> after a soaking wet start to the summer, the clouds of parted and and temperatures have soared. just like the number of bushels -- bushfires breaking out across australia. >> i will begin by saying that in the last 24 hours, we have had approximately 100 fires and three of those have been of relatively significant proportions. i am pleased to say that all the fires are under control, including those three. >> that have tried to douse the flames from the air. some on remote hilltops. many are perilously close to the homes of people. but, they keep breaking out. fanned by a 20 kilometer per hour winds and grass that has turned from green to brown.
>> we're very focused on making sure the communities are aware and that we are running at the highest level of preparedness. >> the fire seat -- the season has kicked in hard. >> for everyone suffering to those conditions, we would all like to say -- listen to your local emergency announcements and make sure the you do what you are asked to do by emergency workers. >> communities are on tenterhooks over the community -- over the tinderbox conditions. duncan kennedy, sydney. >> this is "gmt," from "bbc world news." the headlines -- leading republicans are prepared to battle it out in the first test of the republican nomination, the iowa caucuses.
critics say that the new hungarian constitution friends social freedoms. aaron is here with the business news and the aftermath of the gulf of mexico disaster. >> i will talk about that in a minute. let's start with bp, saying that all of the damages from the gulf of mexico oil spill should be paid by halliburton. they have already paid out $21 billion in compensation related to the explosion of the deepwater horizon rig in 2010. this latest legal case pretty much joins the ranks of our raft of legal wranglings. many analysts are expecting outercourse settlements.
>> there is very little chance that this will actually go through. as you said, halliburton has claimed an indemnity. but if bp can argue that negligence was taken by halliburton employees, that would be overridden. the likely outcome is a settlement, even though halliburton is currently adamant that they will not settle. >> let's take a make -- a look at the mixed picture of job performance. the number of people out of work fell by 22,000, certainly more than expected, while the jobless rate dipped to 6.8%. the german company has so far defied the slowdown. contrasting fortunes in the region, as the german economy may be going strong, it is a different story for spain.
the unemployment rate is the highest in the european union. in spain it is the highest amongst major industrialized nations. we have been asking viewers to send us their experiences of a turbulent 2011. ♪ >> my name is alicia. i am 32 years old. i lived in madrid. i have been employed for two years and four months. my benefits from over a year- and-a-half ago are being supported by home. i do not have any sort of an come.
this is pretty much the norm. it is very difficult to get up and do things. sometimes i have days where i need to pick myself up and get on with it again. i do not know how much longer i will be in this situation. hopefully not much longer. ♪ >> ok, well 2012 promises to be a big year for facebook. i have to tell you, if the rumors are true and it is able to raise an eye-popping $1 billion, it would make it the biggest ever stock offering.
>> this year, we are taking the next step. >> the changes implemented one month ago were amongst the biggest the social networking site has ever made. raising an astronomical amount of money through initial public offerings. >> the facebook ipo is going to potentially be the biggest ipo in history. the biggest internet and technology ipo we have ever seen was from google. the facebook ipo would be several times that magnitude. for the company it makes sense to go public now, in a leadership position. under u.s. law, was to give more
than 500 shdeeharyorsolveu , ha to publish detailed data about your company's financial performance. howard freeman advises companies that want to go public. he says the stock rotation can bring its own set of headaches. >> it affects investor relation, strategy, and as a public company you are subject to analysts and customers of the company, trying to balance those demands to be successful, long term. >> it is one of the most anticipated events in silicon valley and hear on wall street. it is no guarantee of success. some fear that the investors have some doubts about social media listings. all of that could affect facebook in 2012. >> george, if you want to get
in, you had better get in quickly without one. >> very true. thank you very much. >> despite a national task force protecting the seas off somalia, there is still in the tax off of the indian ocean. the government has told its citizens that they must have anti-piracy training. >> the tanker makes its way through pirate-infested waters. it is suddenly under attack. taking place on dry land, thousands of malt -- thousands of miles away, the government has made it compulsory for all filipinos the go to sea to be trained in how to evade pirates. >> we were not trained to use
guns. but we can train people to prevent pirates from coming out board. the moment they come on board, it is a hopeless situation. >> the pirates, so many of the work in the shipping industry. filipinos have a rich maritime history. this is the kind of danger, they say. these photographs were taken when they came under fire from pirates. >> there is nothing else that i can do. they call on the radio. "captain, you must stop your ship. if you do not, i will kill all of you." the pirates -- >> the pirates
receive their ransom after five months. >> it is clear that there are still many filipinos willing to apply for a job on the seas. this is the place where they come to sign up. for many, it is an opportunity to get out of poverty. the truth is, almost any of these jobs could take them through clot -- pirate infested waters. it is impossible to protect every ship, every day. the captain has to weigh the risks with the rewards. >> this is the only job that i know to give my family a good future. >> soon, they will return to the sea again. >> that is it for the moment. there is plenty more to come.
>> make sense of international news at bbc.com/news. >> funding was made possible by the freeman foundation of new york, stowe, vermont, and honolulu. newman's own foundation. and union bank. >> union bank has put its global strength to work for a wide range of financial companies. offering specialized solutions and capital to help your objectives. we offer expertise and tailored solution for small businesses and major corporations. haw can we do for you?