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December 04 2013


Ukraine Splits Over East-West Economic Rivalry

The battle over Ukraine. The reach of the West. Russia’s sphere of influence. Ukrainians in the streets.


Sergei Loiko, Moscow correspondent for The Los Angeles Times, covering the protests in Kiev.

Serhii Plokhii, professor of Ukrainian history at Harvard University. Author of “Ukraine And Russia; Representations of the Past” and “The Origins of the Slavic Nations: Premodern Identities in Russia, Ukraine and Belarus.”

Gwendolyn Sasse, professor of politics and international relations at the University of Oxford. Author of “The Crimea Question: Identity, Transition And Conflict,” “Europeanization and Reorganization in the EU’s Enlargement to Central and Eastern Europe: The Myth of Conditionality” and “Ethnicity and Territory in the Former Soviet Union: Regions in Conflict.”

From Tom’s Reading List

Los Angeles Times: Ukrainian opposition fails to pass no-confidence vote in parliament — “After several days of of mass protests over President Viktor Yanukovich’s refusal to sign the trade and association agreement with Europe, the opposition leaders counted on support from communist lawmakers and defectors from the ruling Party of Regions faction to pass the measure. A vote of no confidence was seen as a first step in bringing down the government.”

Reuters: Ukraine government survives in parliament while rage boils outside — “The government’s November 21 decision to reject a deal on closer trade ties and integration with the EU has laid bare once more a split in world view between Ukraine’s Russian-speaking East and Ukrainian-speaking West.Protesters see the rejection of the EU trade deal as a fundamental shift in the future outlook of their country, away from the European mainstream and back into the orbit of their former Soviet masters in Moscow.”

The Economist: Battle for Ukraine – “Ukraine is not Belarus. It has a vibrant middle class, television is controlled by oligarchs (many of whom are extremely angry with Mr Yanukovych) and, most importantly, a diverse population. Although Mr Yanukovych, whose popularity rating is less than 20%, is still backed by his native Russian-speaking industrial region of Donetsk, he has never had much legitimacy in the Ukrainian-speaking west of the country. His latest actions could lead to a split in the country, with its western part and Kiev simply refusing to recognise the government’s authority.”

November 08 2013


Nazi Treasure Trove Discovered

The story behind the amazing, newly-revealed trove — Matisse, Chagall, Picasso, Renoir — of Nazi-plundered art.

It’s no secret that the Nazis stole, looted, a mountain of art in World War II.  Huge quantities of priceless paintings, cultural artifacts, trucked and trained and hidden all over Europe by Adolf Hitler’s men, looking to remake European culture in the image of the Third Reich.  The Allies fought back on this front too, sending in units of their own to find and save the treasures of Europe.  But they missed a lot.  This week, news out of Munich of a newly-revealed trove.  Matisse, Chagall, Renoir, Picasso.  Up next On Point:  the story behind the amazing newly-revealed trove of Nazi-plundered art.

– Tom Ashbrook


Thomas Röll, one of two reporters who first the story for the German weekly magazine Focus.

Jonathan Petropoulos, professor of European History and chair of the history department at Claremont McKenna College. Author of “The Faustian Bargain: The Art World in Nazi Germany” and “Art as Politics In the Third Reich.”

Robert Edsel, founder and president of the Monuments Men Foundation for the Preservation of Art, co-producer of the documentary, ‘The Rape of Europa.” Author of “The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves and The Greatest Treasure Hunt in History,” Rescuing Da Vinci: Hitler and the Nazis Stole Europe’s Great Art, America and Her Allies Recovered It” and “Saving Italy: The Race to Rescue a Nation’s Treasures From the Nazis.” (@RobertEdsel)

David Rowland, partner at the New York City law firm Rowland & Petroff, which specializes in art recovery representation.

From Tom’s Reading List

Wall Street Journal: Cache of Nazi-Seized Art Discovered in Munich Apartment– “The works, by artists including Picasso, Matisse and Chagall, are estimated to be worth about €1 billion ($1.35 billion), according to a preliminary analysis for authorities undertaken by an expert at Berlin’s Free University. German authorities made the discovery more than two years ago but kept the finding a secret, they say, pending the completion of their investigation.”

New York Times: In a Rediscovered Trove of Art, a Triumph Over the Nazis’ Will — “Among the very first goals of the Nazis was to purge German museums and ransack private collections. Perversely, they stockpiled the modern art they hated, some to sell abroad in exchange for hard currency. Hildebrand was one of the dealers whom Joseph Goebbels picked for this task. Some art they paraded in an exhibition of shame. The show ended up a blockbuster, infuriating the Führer. After that, thousands upon thousands of confiscated works disappeared.”

Los Angeles Times: George Clooney’s ‘The Monuments Men’ pushed to 2014 — “George Clooney’s World War II drama ’The Monuments Men’ will not arrive in theaters this year as planned because the film’s visual effects could not be completed in time, the actor and director said. The tale of a ragtag band of art historians, museum curators and academics racing to rescue paintings and sculptures looted by the Nazis — slated to open Dec. 18 — now will be released by Sony Pictures early next year.”

Gallery Of Looted Art Discovered In Munich

Likely List Of Art Included In Stash

July 18 2013



February 11 2012


MissionaryBroadcasting.com - Vernon Rosenau: Africa and Europe

Today we meet Vernon Rosenau, missionary in the Central African Republic from 1975 to 1999, and current Administrator for Africa and Europe with Baptist Mid-Missions.

June 19 2011


June 17th, Paris: the Montmartre quarter

The area I am most looking forward to this Sunday, the legendary Montmartre quarter - featuring the famous song about it; "la boheme" by Charles Aznavour (French lyrics followed by an English translation).

June 16th, Paris: the inhabitants from the eyes of a tourist

Society and Paris: the highs and lows, the stereotypes, the coldness - or warmth sometimes !

June 16th, Paris: thoughts and impressions

Very diverse ramblings about my experience with the town itself: the streets, the people, the rhythm...

June 15th, Paris: Around the Louvre museum

Street recording of the path to the Louvre, and after noticing a ridiculous queue, around it instead of inside - leading to a much surprising pleasant afternoon.

June 07 2011


Wax Audio | Mashed Media - Appropriated, Re-Mixed, Sexed-Up & Uranium Enriched

May 24 2011


RN Rear Vision - 18 May 2011 - Life after the GFC

The Global Financial Crisis had its roots in the collapse of the US housing bubble, which caused the values of securities tied to US real estate to plummet, in turn threatening the existence of many of the world's biggest financial institutions. Rear Vision looks at how the aftershocks of the crisis are playing out around the world. http://www.abc.net.au/rn/rearvision/stories/2011/3211434.htm

May 19 2011


Children of Sodom and Gomorrah - RN 360 - 7 May 2011

Sodom and Gomorrah is a hellish place in Accra, Ghana where children eke out a living on a scrap heap of discarded computers that The West no longer needs. They sell the computer parts but the toxic chemicals in the waste are slowly poisoning the children. They dream of escaping illegally to Europe to live like the people whose computers they are harvesting. Producer Jens Jarisch went to Sodom and Gomorrah and then followed some of the children on their treacherous journey across Africa. He also followed the e-waste on its journey from the the docks in Germany to a place that's out of sight and out of mind. This is an adaptation in English of a German program that won the Prix Italia prize for Radio Documentary in 2010. The adaptation was produced by Sharon Davis with narration by Rebecca Massey and additional performances from Josef Ber and Thuso Lekwape. Further Information: Photos of the children at Sodom and Gomorrah(http://www.spiegel.de/fotostrecke/fotostrecke-49449.html) The children of Sodom and Gomorrah Further reading from German magazine Der Spiegel (http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,665061,00.html) http://www.abc.net.au/rn/360/stories/2011/3206745.htm

March 28 2011


Science Weekly podcast: Why scientists love Germany | Science | guardian.co.uk

We visit the European Space Agency's operations centre, and get a taste of some of the most exciting research being carried out in Germany. What can the rest of the world learn from the way Germans do science? http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/blog/audio/2011/mar/14/science-weekly-podcast-germany-special

March 24 2011


Artworks Feature: The Art of Being Europe Pt.3 - Film and the EU - RN Artworks - 20 March 2011

How many European films would survive Hollywood without EU support? Is the next generation forgetting how to watch European films, growing up instead on a diet of American blockbusters? Wim Wenders is worried. The King's Speech wasn't the only European film to do well at this year's Oscars. Another film, In a Better World by Danish director Susanne Bier, won best foreign language film. Both were backed by the European Union's Media program, which is the subject of today's feature. This week Lyn Gallacher begins part three of her tour through Europe by taking us to to the movies. It's a Finnish film. http://www.abc.net.au/rn/artworks/stories/2011/3165392.htm

Artworks Feature: The Art of Being Europe Pt.2 – The Economy of Culture - RN Artworks - 13 March 2011

In Europe, creative and cultural industries generate 2.6% of gross domestic product. That's more than the chemical industry and more than the real estate sector. But how does this figure help the arts during an economic downturn? The European Cultural Agenda is the source of funding for all sorts of programs. Within the EU, and even in countries like ours, EU policies have helped Australian artists, students, researchers, curators and radio program makers alike. It all points to a new emphasis on creativity. This week's episode of the The Art of Being Europe begins in Helsinki at the final rehearsal for the International Jean Sibelius violin competition. It is one of the top violin competitions in the world. Everyone is a little tense, particularly the competitors. http://www.abc.net.au/rn/artworks/stories/2011/3160349.htm

Artworks Feature: The Art of Being Europe Pt.1 – The Soul of Europe is Steeped in Blood - RN Artworks - 6 March 2011

What is the connection between art, politics, economics and the European soul? In answer to this question we take the long view, going back to the beginning of European Union, to what Victor Hugo calls its 'noble gestation.' http://www.abc.net.au/rn/artworks/stories/2011/3154169.htm

December 03 2010


Europe’s Crisis: Damage & Debt

Timothy Garton Ash and economist Simon Johnson on the European debt crisis and the future of Europe.

October 26 2010


Britain’s Cuts: Daring or Daft?

Britain announced an austerity package that has stunned even the most hard-nosed American deficit hawks. We look at Britain’s cutbacks.

October 19 2010


Germany’s First “Hitler Exhibit”

Swastikas and the Fuhrer on display. The first “Hitler exhibit” since World War Two Opens in Berlin. We take a tour.
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