Quest for Mt. Everest III

Lead: After repeated pre-war attempts, in the early 1950s Mt. Everest finally bent to repeated assaults. The mountain was scaled by New Zealand beekeeper, Edmund Hillary, and Sherpa guide, Tensing Norgay.

Intro. : A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts

Content: After World War II, Communist China invaded Tibet and blocked exploration of Everest from the North. The southern approaches were taken through Nepal and a reconnaissance expedition was mounted by that route in 1951 by the Brits. The following year two strong Swiss teams attempted to scale the mountain in the Spring and Fall but were stopped by severe weather both times just short of the summit.

Quest for Mt. Everest II

Lead: The challenge of Mt. Everest was clear from the time its height was determined in the 1800s, but attempts to reach the summit are not known to have begun until the 1920s.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: The peak of Mt. Everest is one of earth’s most hostile places. The air is thin. No crops can be grown there. No domestic animals can live there. Any attempt on the summit would require taking along those things necessary to sustain life. Long months of adaptation to the high altitude, supplementary oxygen in tanks, food and water would have to be dragged up nearly impassible terrain which, in the early days, no one had ever crossed. The key to the eventual success of the assault on Everest was a nomadic people, Tibetan-speaking clans who struggled for survival on the lower slopes of the mountain by trading and herding livestock. These are the Sherpa. They were capable of carrying the large loads of supplies that made the climb possible.

Quest for Mt. Everest I

Lead: The highest point on earth is the peak of Mt. Everest, part of a geologic eruption along the crest of the Himalayas on the border between Nepal and Tibet. Until 1953 no one had been able to go up there.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: It is known as Chomolungma, Goddess Mother of the World, and it towers 29,035 feet above sea level, dwarfing the glaciers that wrap themselves around its base. Until 1852 when its true height was determined at a distance by an India surveyor, the mountain was known simply as Peak 15. In 1865, it was named for Sir George Everest, previously Surveyor General of India.

Taj Mahal

Lead: On the Jumna River in the city of Agra, India, is the crowning jewel of Indo-Islamic architecture. Built by the emperor of India, Shah Jahan, the structure is one of the most elaborate works of art ever erected.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Jahan inherited the throne of India at birth and at a fairly early age met and fell deeply in love with a beautiful woman, Arjumrand Band Begun. As his favorite, Arjumrand bore many of the emperor's children and they lived happily until in 1631 she died during childbirth - her fourteenth in eighteen years. So devastated was Jahan by her death that he locked himself in his room for many days. When he emerged he sent for India's finest architects, sculptors and craftsmen. Construction started shortly after the queen's death and for more than a year twenty thousand people worked to complete her tomb. Finished in 1648 it is set in a huge rectangular park and towers 187 feet above the river.

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Indira Gandhi II

Lead: Cloudy were the political fortunes of India’s longtime Prime Minister Indira Gandhi in the late 1970s. Unfazed, she engineered a vigorous comeback.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Her political intuition, which in the past had seemed infallible, was failing. Power was slipping from her grasp. In June 1975 the High Court of Allabahad (‘a la ba had) found the Prime Minister guilty of irregular and illegal election practices. Economic decline was forcing many Indians further into poverty. When rising public disorder threatened the government, Gandhi resorted to desperation tactics. She declared an emergency, sent political enemies to prison, rescinded constitutional rights, and censored the press with unusual harshness. Confident that her actions had cowed the opposition Gandhi called a snap election. The people rejected her borderline authoritarianism and handed the Prime Minister’s Congress Party a sound thrashing.

Indira Gandhi I

Lead: Born of a political family prominent in the movement for independence, Indira Gandhi became a leader in her own right as Prime Minister of India

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: The daughter of Jawahalal Nehru, India’s first Prime Minister after independence, after education in Switzerland and Oxford, she returned home, married a lawyer, Feroze Gandhi, then served her widowed father as hostess. By 1955 she had her own seat in the Indian Parliament and four years later became President of the Congress Party, the nation’s strongest political alliance.

Gandhi in South Africa II

Lead: Mahatma Gandhi first built his reputation as it led the movement to secure rights for Indian workers in sugar plantations in early twentieth century South Africa.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: The cash crop of Natal province on the eastern coast of South Africa was sugar cane. Native Africans resisted working on the plantations and therefore thousands of emigrant workers were brought from India. Some went home after their contract expired, others stayed. In the 1880s torn between their need for Indian labor and fear of the growth of the Indian population, white South Africans of both Dutch and English heritage began to restrict Indian rights, this despite the stated British policy which accorded legal equality to all subjects of the Empire regardless of race or place of origin.

 

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Gandhi in South Africa I

Lead: In his campaign for Indian freedom in the 1940s, Mahatma Gandhi used skills and tactics he sharpened in a fight for justice in turn of the twentieth century South Africa.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Most people have an image of Gandhi as a shriveled figure dressed in traditional clothes whose use of non-violence helped drive the British from the Indian sub-continent. Few remember that he spent over twenty years as a lawyer in South Africa deeply involved in alleviating abuses direct toward the Indian emigrant community.

 

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