Tuesday, December 9, 2008

09 Dec 2008: Today's Democracy Now!

The History of the Nobel Prize: A Look at Alfred Nobel, the Man Who Invented Dynamite
We broadcast from Sweden, where the Nobel Prize will be handed out at ceremonies here in Stockholm and in Oslo. The prize is awarded in the categories of Chemistry, Physics, Medicine, Literature, Peace and Economics. They’re handed out every year on the anniversary of the death of the Nobel Prize’s founder, the Swedish industrialist Alfred Nobel, who invented dynamite. We speak with Peter Zander, the curator of the Nobel Museum. [includes rush transcript]

Bush, Rove Tied to Effort to Dismantle Sweden's Social Welfare Program
Sweden’s three main left-leaning opposition parties have just announced plans to build a coalition for next year’s parliamentary elections. The Social Democrats, the Green Party and the Left Party say collectively they’ll try to wrest power from the Moderate Party, which leads a coalition of center-right groups. We speak with social anthropology professor Brian Palmer.

Sweden Ranks Second in the World in Per Capita Weapons Exports
Institutions like the Nobel Prize have helped link Sweden’s international reputation to peace and reconciliation, but few people know Sweden is also one of the world’s top exporters of weapons. Sweden is among the world’s top arms exporters in per capita terms. Its clients include the United States and Britain, with shipments more than doubling since 2000. We speak with two activists in Sweden.

Blackwater Guards Indicted for Role in Nisour Square Massacre
Five Blackwater security guards were charged on Monday for their role in the 2007 Nisour Square massacre in Baghdad that left 17 Iraqis dead and more than 20 wounded. The federal prosecutors accused the Blackwater guards of opening machine gun fire on innocent Iraqis and launching a grenade into a girls’ school. We speak with Jeremy Scahill, author of “Blackwater: The Rise of the World”s Most Powerful Mercenary Army."

Sweden Opens Doors For Iraqi And Afghan Refugees
Sweden is home to more Iraqi refugees than other European countries. The nation has also let in many Afghan refugees. We speak to Faisal Enayat Khan. He is a reporter for the Swedish newspaper the Local. Originally from Afghanistan, he is in Sweden after being granted asylum.

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