Saturday, October 31, 2009

IMAX - Journey Into Amazing Caves

Journey Into Amazing Caves tells the story of Nancy Aulenbach and Dr. Hazel Barton, who share a love for caves and cave exploration. Join these two accomplished cavers as they explore unusual caves, like ice caves in Greenland and underwater caves in the jungles of Mexico, looking for important clues about the Earth's past and microorganisms that inhabit its most extreme environments. On the giant screen, this unique story will transport viewers on an adventure to some of the most extraordinary environments on earth.

JouNarrated by Liam Neeson and featuring a soundtrack with songs and music from The Moody Blues, Journey Into Amazing Caves is MacGillivray Freeman Films' third Great Adventure Film. Photographed with IMAX® cameras, Journey into Amazing Caves is now playing on giant screen theatres worldwide.


PBS Frontlne: The Warning

In the devastating aftermath of the economic meltdown, FRONTLINE sifts the ashes for clues about why it happened and examines critical moments when it might have gone much differently. Looking back into the 1990s, producer/director Michael Kirk ("Inside the Meltdown," "Breaking the Bank") discovers early warnings of the crash, reveals an intense battle among high-ranking members of the Clinton administration and uncovers a concerted effort not to regulate the emerging, highly complex and lucrative derivatives markets, and at the center of it all he finds Brooksley Born, who speaks for the first time on television about her failed campaign to regulate the secretive, multitrillion-dollar derivatives market whose crash helped trigger the financial collapse in the fall of 2008which would become the ticking time bomb within the American economy.


History Channel-The Town That Time Forgot

An archaeologist searching for a Roman road is amazed to
instead discover an entire Roman town that had been lost and
forgotten for thousands of years.


James Cameron – The Exodus Decoded

Exodus. The very word evokes an epic tale of Pharaohs and Israelites, plagues and miracles, the splitting of the sea, the drowning of an army, Moses and the revelation at Sinai. The story is at the very heart of Judaism, Christianity and Islam. But many historians argue that the Exodus is a myth. Others disagree. In the Exodus Decoded we analyze the latest archaeological findings and scientific papers; we explore the dusty back rooms of out-of-the-way libraries and museums around the world; and we track down dozens of forgotten relics and ancient documents. Individually, these findings are historical curiosities. Together they tell the true story of the Exodus. In an explosive 2-hour documentary special, Exodus Decoded solves the mystery of the events of the Biblical Exodus for the first time ever.


National Geographic-Earth Investigated - Telepathy

Can people read your mind? Is telepathy real or just good guesswork? Many people believe in the power of our brains to transmit to others. Earth Investigated conducts experiments to confirm whether this is true.


The Secret Diary of the Holocaust

Documentary telling the extraordinary tale of a 14-year-old Polish girl, Rutka Laskier, who was murdered at Auschwitz in 1943.

In 2005, the school notebook in which Rutka recorded her last months in the ghetto of Bedzin was made public, six decades after she hid it under the floorboards of her home there. Rutka was immediately dubbed the 'Polish Anne Frank'.

In her diary, Rutka wrote about her life in the ghetto in 1943, detailing not just the Nazi atrocities, physical hardship and hunger, but also how she was developing as a young woman. She also tells how she made a daring escape from one of the early 'aktions', Nazi round-ups of Jews for transportation.

The documentary will unravel Rutka's story through the eyes of her half-sister, Israeli academic Zahava Scherz, on a journey to Poland in search of the sister she never knew.


Friday, October 30, 2009

BBC - The Birth Of Israel

Jeremy Bowen presents a look back at the creation of the state of Israel, examining the the events leading up to the Israeli war of Independence in 1949, its impact on Arab/Israeli relations and the implications for the Middle East.
This discription doesn't do this documentary justice. It's a one hour crash course in some of the underlying causes of the current problems in the Middle East.


National Geographic - World's Deadliest Animals: Asia Pacific

Asia is the largest and most populated continent on the planet. Here people compete for space with some of the most impressive animals in the world. Creatures that have ingenious adaptations to hunt and defend. Large and powerful predators stalk the snowy landscape in Siberia, and patrol the tropical waters of the Pacific. Ancient, armored creatures rule Asia's grasslands and wetlands. Deadly snakes strike from below, while cunning monkeys attack from above. And perhaps most impressive is the massive polar bear, the largest land based carnivore. They are remarkable animals, armed with massive jaws, venomous bites and impressive strength. Take a journey into their domain for a close-up look at their lethal abilities: how they hunt, kill, and defend. And see what happens if we get in their way. They are Asia's Deadly Dozen.


Wednesday, October 28, 2009

History Channel-Counter Terrorist Teams

The end of the Cold War was the beginning of a new age. The principle fear of the American public is not attack from a superpower, but a terrorist strike on home soil. From the 1993 attack on the World Trade Center to the London subway bombing, this threat has become all too real. New strategies, personnel, teams, and training have been employed to combat this new threat.

Take a look inside two counter terrorist units, the United Kingdom's Special Air Service (SAS) and the United States Marine Corps' Fleet Anti-Terrorism Security Team (FAST). These units must be trained to cope with a wide variety of situations, from biological attacks to hostage negotiations. Get a glimpse inside their operations and hear personal accounts from team members. Public officials and civilian hostage negotiators offer their thoughts on the specialties that these men and women are required to possess. Terrorist attack can take many different forms, and can come from a wide variety of sources. Discover how the US and UK are rising to meet the challenge of this expanded threat.


Discovery - Combat school

COMBAT SCHOOL follows - for the first time ever - Canadian infantry soldiers as they undergo the most technologically-advanced, intense and realistic combat training in military history. This six-part, one-hour Canadian documentary series goes directly to the heart of modern warfare by following a platoon of 40 men and women from the time they commence their training until they are declared battle-ready and deployed. Granted unprecedented access by the Canadian military and combat trainers, cameras are then embedded with the platoon in the war fields of Afghanistan where viewers witness how the soldiers' skills are put to the ultimate test when they encounter insurgents for the first time.

In COMBAT SCHOOL the training is intense and the expectations high. Those who are unprepared won't make it, and those who are ready leave everything behind to risk their lives in a war zone. Following soldiers from 1 Platoon, Mike Company, 3rd Battalion, Royal Canadian Regiment - based out of Petawawa, Ontario - COMBAT SCHOOL captures every step of the mission-specific training as the men and women prepare for the most intense combat situation they have ever faced.

Platoon leaders must ensure that these soldiers - some as young as 19 - are fully trained before they enter the volatile combat zone. The soldiers travel to Texas where topography and arid conditions mimic that of the Afghan desert to begin their training. From there, they head to the Canadian Manoeuvre Training Centre in Wainwright, Alberta for the most realistic, complex and advanced combat training in the world.

After months of demanding training, the battle-ready troops travel to Afghanistan. Assigned to a Forward Operating Base in the heart of Taliban territory - this will be the first time their combat skills are put to the ultimate test in the theatre of war. They learn just how close the enemy is after a rocket attack on their very first night at base.


Ray Mears' Northern Wilderness

Ray Mears takes an epic adventure into Canada's unforgiving, yet stunning wilderness. His journey begins in the vast Boreal Forest at the heart of Canada. This is a place where knowledge and experience are still far more important than the equipment you carry, a place left alone for centuries before Europeans arrived. Ray explores the wonder of this special forest, learns about the people who called it home and unlocks the secrets of this forgotten world. This is a land where knowledge of bushcraft is not just desirable, it is essential.


Tuesday, October 27, 2009

National Geographic-Animals Like Us - Adoption

Altruism, an act that bestows a benefit on the recipient while conferring a cost to the actor, is one of the central paradoxes of evolution. In the wild, where only the fittest survive, adopting other animals' offspring is not really in line with Darwin's theory of evolution. And yet, amongst bees, dolphins, lions and several primate species, altruism may go as far as adoption. In the case of social insects, parent substitution was a flaw in Darwin's theory of evolution by natural selection: the biologist noticed that non-reproductive insects who adopted and helped young ones, brought a large portion of genetic baggage from their parents. Darwin had to broaden his theory to the family group. For mammals, including men, what advantage is there in the act of adoption? In the years following the adoption, does the adopted individual contribute to the foster parents' survival and vice versa? The controversy at the heart of this documentary continues to be debated in today's scientific world. While raising these different questions, this documentary will study each case separately because each adoption behavior has evolved independently forming its own pattern, its own benefit and even�its own disadvantages.


BBC Horizon-We are the Aliens

Clouds of alien life forms are sweeping through outer space and infecting planets with life ? it may not be as far-fetched as it sounds.

The idea that life on Earth came from another planet has been around as a modern scientific theory since the 1960s when it was proposed by Fred Hoyle and Chandra Wickramasinghe. At the time they were ridiculed for their idea ? known as panspermia. But now, with growing evidence, it's back in vogue and even being studied by NASA.

We meet the scientists on a mission to get to the bottom of the beginnings of life on Earth - from the team in Texas who are lovingly building a robotic submarine called DEPTHX to explore a moon of Jupiter, to Southern India where they are investigating a mysterious red rain which fell for two months in 2001. According to local scientist Godfrey Louis, the rain contains biological cells unlike any he had seen before ? with no DNA and the ability to replicate at 300?C. Louis has come to the conclusion that the cells are extra-terrestrial in origin.

Could all this really be proof that We are the aliens?


Namibia: Genocide and the Second Reich

Described by the BBC as the story of Germany's forgotten genocide. This powerful documentary by David Adetayo Olusoga took a sensitive and uncompromising look at the tragic circumstances leading to the massacre of three quarters of the Namibia population in German concentration camps built in Africa. The programme included graphic reconstructions and did not shirk from showing disturbing scenes which revealed the savagery of european colonial ideology put into practise. The documentary also showed the 2004 footage of Germany's ambassador to Namibia expressing regret for their killing of thousands of Namibia's Hereros during the colonial era. Unsurprisingly, the Germans refused to agree to the justifiable calls for reparations.

The programme also explored the current call for land reforms where most of Namibia's commercial land is still owned by european farmers who make up 6 percent of the country's population of 1.8 million. Throughout it included interviews and powerful testimony from African survivors, descendants and reparation movement representatives thus making this a compelling programme which both educated the audience whilst treating the sensitive subject matter with the respect it deserved.

The term Second Reich (Zweites Reich) is sometimes applied retrospectively to this period. The term was popularised by German nationalist historian Arthur Moeller van den Bruck in the 1920s, and drew an explicit link with the earlier Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation (the "First Reich"), as well as underlining his desire for the establishment of a "Third Reich". This term was subsequently adopted during the time of Nazi rule for propaganda purposes - and therefore its use among historians after World War II has generally been discouraged, as many consider it to give legitimacy to Nazi historiography.


Discovery HD Theater - Equator: Reef of Riches

The Indo Pacific region is home to an exuberant abundance of life. On the coral reef, every animal is an example of evolution in action. New species emerge, explained by radical and intriguing theories. Sexual selection, a tumultuous glacial history and hothouse living conditions are all-powerful forces shaping life in this region.


Who Took Your Pension?

Dispatches lifts the lid on the pensions crisis. The programme names some of the blue-chip companies that have abandoned final salary pension schemes. It shows how widespread the problem of underperforming pensions is, and how difficult it is to get full compensation if things go wrong.
Dispatches also reveals the extent to which public sector pensions are under threat, and how far private pensions have failed to deliver in the recession. The programme asks whether the government has failed to protect pensions, and examines their ideas for tackling the crisis in the future.

National Geographic - Lions Behaving Badly

We think of the lion as the king of beasts - the perfect predators - built to make a swift clean kill - but think again. Now spectacular footage reveals another side to this hunters killing power. We follow a family of lion cubs as they start out in life. Seven out of the eight cubs are male - for them the clock is ticking, within two years they need to learn to hunt before setting out and finding new territories of their own, to avoid treading on the toes of the dominant pride male. The cubs hunting lessons are perhaps not what you might expect; instead of ambushing their prey and quickly despatching with a clean bite to the throat, these lions wrestle their victim to the ground and tuck in before the hapless beast is dead. When the prey is a young elephant, it means a slow and painful death. Are these lions behaving badly or is it simply that this is what lions do?

PBS NOVA - AstroSpies

Millions remember the countdowns, launches, splashdowns, and parades as the U.S. raced the Soviet Union to the moon in the 1960s. Few know that both superpowers ran parallel covert space programs to launch military astronauts on spying missions, and even fewer know what became of the military astronauts they trained. Highly classified for decades, these top-secret missions might easily have triggered a shooting war in orbit. NOVA travels to Russia for exclusive access to cosmonauts and their restricted space facility and obtains candid first-time interviews with astronauts in the American military space program. ASTROSPIES uncovers new clues about the tensest period of the Cold War, when the U.S. and USSR were on the verge of war and desperate for intelligence on each other’s nuclear capabilities.

The Zeppelin: The History of the World's Greatest Airships

Using extensive archival footage, this documentary transcends the scope of a single period to hone in on the history of airships as developed and employed, transnationally, over time. Subtopics include: the German Zeppelin in World War I, the North Pole Expedition, the R101 Disaster of October 1930 in France, the Akron Zeppelin, and the construction and employment of blimps (also known as "non-rigid inflatables"). ~ Nathan Southern.

Discovery HD - Flavours of Turkey

Modern and ancient, urban and wild spiritual and hedonistic - a true melting pot of cultures. Discover how Turkey, a vibrant and hospitable country, offers amazing diversity

Monday, October 26, 2009

Discovery HD - What's That About? The Airport

This is the story of three airports on one main mission - moving travellers to their destinations safely and without delays. It’s a delicate balance and a massive challenge. Discover the daily hurdles that airports must overcome: snow on the runway; ice on the wings; too many flights vying for landing rights; too many in queue to take off; high security risks; even sometimes… fire on the runway.

PBS Jean-Michel Cousteau: Ocean Adventures - Sea Ghosts

There are places on this planet where it's a marvel that anything survives. But in the arctic waters of the Far North, the sea is alive with sound. The canaries of the sea are singing. They're beluga whales, named from the Russian word for "white ones." They're an evolutionary surprise -- a warm-blooded mammal in a numbingly cold sea. Resembling curious ghosts, these intelligent mammals use one of the most complex sonars of any animal.

Belugas inhabiting Cook Inlet, close to Anchorage, Alaska, were added to the endangered species list in October 2008. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) stated that a decade-long recovery program had failed to ensure the whales' survival. The relationship between people and belugas is ancient. For more than 4,000 years, hunters of the Far North have depended on these whales for their own survival in a land with little else to offer. These traditional cultures have now partnered with scientists and modern technology to protect the beluga, which, in turn, ensures their own future. Yet these efforts are only a small part of the story, as new discoveries have raised troubling questions about the health of belugas and their long-term survival.

Their world is now ground zero for climate change, but what threatens them is not confined to the Arctic, it's global. What lies ahead for the beluga could become prophesy for many species everywhere, including our own.

German Bombers & Bombing Raids of WW2 - 1942-1945

The bombing campaigns of World War II were the one element of the air war that had a strategic significance, on a par with the ground movements of infantry and the blockade-related activities of both sides on the high seas. It was this use of air power, first deployed to a significant extent in the 1940s, that was to have a lasting influence on geopolitics for decades to come. Previously, bombing from the air was looked upon as a form of sabotage—an irritant and a hindrance, but not a map-changing strategic factor in the course of a war. However, once bombing was carried out extensively against industrial, military, and civilian targets, it had the power to change battle lines, and ultimately to determine the outcome of a war.
The first use of bombing in the war was as a tactical weapon, by the Germans in the invasion of Poland. The early bombers were converted transports that were originally designed to be transformed into bombers: the Junkers JU86 and JU88, the Dornier Do 17, and the Heinkel He-111, all used in the invasion of Poland. All these aircraft had been tested in the Spanish Civil War and had been found to be vulnerable to attack from the aft and forward directions. The remedy was to create gunner’s nests in “greenhouse” type nests, which were to become common in later bombers of both sides.

Dive Bombers & Combat Aircraft of WW2

For many in the opening years of the Second World War, the vision of the menacing, gull-winged Stuka dive bomber, plunging vertically earthwards, its sirens wailing like banshees before releasing its bomb load, became the very embodiment of the terror created by the new form of 'Blitzkrieg' warfare unleashed on Europe by the German Wehrmacht in September, 1939.
Designed to assist ground operations, the Stuka was always to be found operating with the leading elements of the army in France, North Africa, and Russia as 'flying artillery'. In this wide-ranging presentation the Stuka is seen in action on all fronts, as well as the Hs-129s and Fw-190 in action in Russia.

National Geographic - Megastructures: Guns, Machines of War

Machine Gun unravels the history of the deadly rapid-fire weaponry favoured by both military and gangsters. We examine how 150 years of machine gun evolution has placed the firepower of a 19th Century Army in the hands of a company of US Marines. Specially staged live-fire machine gun events explain the key moments in the weapon's history: from the World War One machine gun that can chop down a tree, to the first gangster "hit" with a Tommy Gun, to the modern GAU-8 Avenger - one of the deadliest machine guns in the world.


Sunday, October 25, 2009

Discovery HD Theater - Equator: Paradox of the Andes

In the high Andes mountains of Ecuador, the intense power of the equatorial sun beats down through thin air onto a grassland world fringed by glaciers and cloud forest. Every day is like summer - and every night is like winter. Within a 24-hour cycle, plants and animals adapt to both blistering heat and freezing temperatures - but how?

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Scorched Earth- Amphibious Warfare

Throughout World War Two, there were many dramatic and spectacular seaborne invasions, some of which would have a major bearing on the course and eventual outcome of the conflict. Much blood was spilt as men attacked beachheads from Tunisia to Normandy. Amphibious Warfare is a remarkable record of seaborne invasions throughout World War Two. The programme features powerful action footage, including extensive images from the decisive Normandy landings and brand new state-of-the-art computer graphics.


Friday, October 23, 2009

PBS Nature - American Eagle

Unique to North America, the bald eagle is the continent's most recognizable aerial predator, with a shocking white head, electric yellow beak and penetrating eyes. In the 1960s, this symbol of the United States became an emblem of environmental degradation, as the pesticide DDT and other human pressures brought it to the brink of extinction. Following their protection as an endangered species, bald eagles have come roaring back. Photographed by three-time Emmy-winning cinematographer Neil Rettig, this first-ever HD program on bald eagles focuses on the drama of the nest. Even in the best of times, it's a surprisingly tough struggle to maintain a one-ton home and raise chicks until they can hunt on their own. This is an intimate portrait of these majestic raptors' lives in the wild.


BBC - Natural World: Titus The Gorilla King

Abandoned as a baby, removed from normal gorilla family life as a youngster - so profound were the misfortunes that Titus suffered in his early years that no gorilla scientist could have predicted his eventual rise to power. His moving life story is pieced together here for the first time, based on archive film and the memories of field workers who have studied the mountain gorillas since Dian Fossey's pioneering work more than 40 years ago. At 33 years of age, Titus is not just one of the most powerful silverbacks in Rwanda's Virunga Mountains, he is possibly the most remarkable gorilla ever known. His life story is as full of drama, intrigue and tragedy as any human soap opera. Against a stunning backdrop of misty volcanic peaks cloaked in bamboo and giant lobelia, Titus has successfully steered his family group through thick and thin. But now he is under pressure again. With his ally-turned-rival, Kuryama, jockeying for position, are we about to witness the final chapter in Titus's extraordinary reign?


Kriegsmarine: The German Navy of WWII

Hitler promised his naval commanders that there would be no war in Europe before 1942. Accordingly, plans were laid for the best naval force in the world. So when Hitler precipitated the Second World War in 1939, only a fraction of the planned naval power was available and Germany did not even possess one aircraft carrier and despite having the battleships Bismarck and Tirpitz, the Kriegsmarine was always on the back foot, crippled by superior opponents and strangled by bureaucratic neglect at home.


Discovery HD - MegaWorld: France


MegaWorld: France explores that country's cutting-edge contributions transforming science in the air, on the sea and on land. This fascinating one-hour special takes a closer look at how French scientists are leading the way with sophisticated military operations, innovative commercial air flight technology and racetrack safety. Vive le scientifique!


History Channel-Stalin The Myth

A psychological study into the making of a tyrant. Iosif
Vissarionovich came from a middle-class background, and his
mother hoped that he would become a priest. Instead, he killed
20 million people during his despotic rule, and unleashed a terror
that would engulf the Soviet Union.


U.S. Marshals: Operation Falcon (720p)

Operation FALCON is a nationwide fugitive apprehension operation coordinated by the United States Marshals Service (USMS). The resources of federal, state, city and county law enforcement agencies are combined to locate and apprehend criminals wanted for crimes of violence. Since its inception in 2005, Operation FALCON has made more than 90,000 arrests and cleared more than 115,000 warrants and is the single most successful initiative aimed at apprehending violent fugitives in U.S. law enforcement history. This series focuses on U.S. Marshals in Miami, New Orleans and Washington, D.C.


Thursday, October 22, 2009

National Geographic - The Biology Of Prenatal Development

Our award-winning science documentary, The Biology of Prenatal Development, explains the science and communicates the wonder of human development from fertilization through birth. Using six medical imaging technologies, the program features extraordinarily rare direct videography of the living human embryo and early fetus inside the womb from 4 to 12 weeks following fertilization.

Produced in conjunction with and endorsed by human development experts, this program provides a unique visual appreciation of prenatal development, while clearly explaining facts obtained from the medical literature. This program was released on June 2, 2006 and includes closed captions in English, and subtitles in Spanish and French. Sometime in the near future, we anticipate subtitles will be available in many additional languages.

Intended for general audiences, The Biology of Prenatal Development is recommended for use in middle and high school health and biology courses, introductory college- and graduate-level human embryology courses, and prenatal care classes. It is a key ingredient in EHD's curriculum intended to enhance the effectiveness of prenatal care education, health science education, and efforts to prevent the use of harmful substances during pregnancy.


A Bengal Tigers Motherly Love
Bengal tigers living in the forests of India are rarely seen, but we succeeded in filming a female tiger called Machali raising her cubs. Although known for their fierce nature, we witnessed an incredible affection of the mother tiger for her cubs. We also found a strict hierarchy exists among the little ones as their strategy to survive. It is said that male tigers take no part in the rearing of the cubs and will even occasionally kill them. However, for the first time, the camera has captured an endearing scene of a father tiger interacting with his offspring.


Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Russian Revolution in Color

Actually a recreation of russian revolution from point of view of some sailors. Here is the official description:
The Russian Revolution brought about the end of the reign of the czars and saw the rise of communism. This compilation of rarely seen color and colorized footage brings the reality of the civil war vividly to life. Noted historians offer their insights on these events that occurred nearly a century ago, events that paved the way for the formation of the Soviet Union and still resonate today.


Tuesday, October 20, 2009

PBS • American Experience: The Polio Crusade,

In the summer of 1950 fear gripped the residents of Wytheville, Virginia. Movie theaters shut down, baseball games were cancelled and panicky parents kept their children indoors — anything to keep them safe from an invisible invader. Outsiders sped through town with their windows rolled up and bandanas covering their faces. The ones who couldn’t escape the perpetrator were left paralyzed, and some died in the wake of the devastating and contagious virus. Polio had struck in Wytheville. The town was in the midst of a full-blown epidemic. That year alone, more than 33,000 Americans fell victim — half of them under the age of ten.

AMERICAN EXPERIENCE presents The Polio Crusade, a one-hour documentary from filmmaker Sarah Colt (Geronimo, RFK) that interweaves the personal accounts of polio survivors with the story of an ardent crusader who tirelessly fought on their behalf while scientists raced to eradicate this dreaded disease. Based in part on the Pulitzer Prize-winning book Polio: An American Story by David Oshinsky, The Polio Crusade features interviews with historians, scientists, polio survivors, and the only surviving scientist from the core research team that developed the Salk vaccine, Julius Youngner.


Non Euclidean Geometry and Hidden Worlds, History of Maths and 4 Dimensional

Xvid | 688×522 | 25fps | MP3 | 128kbps | 280MB

A look at Mathematicians in History who speculated about the existence of Non Euclidean Geometries and a short programme about Paul Banchoffs attempts to look into the 4th Dimension by visualising Hypercubes.
The look at Non Euclidean Geometry is part of the History of Mathematics and profiles some of the main figures involved including Carl Friedrich Gauss & Wolfgan & Yanosh Bolyai. The programme also examines the different Geometries that they explored. The short about Paul Banchoffs attempts to visualise the unseeable 4th Dimension is intriguing and includes a nice animation of a hypercube (or tesseract).

Richard Hammond and the Holy Grail

Exploring hundreds of years of history, Richard Hammond embarks on an entertaining travelogue examining the popular and enduring myths and legends surrounding the Holy Grail.

Thought by many to be the very cup from which Jesus drank at the Last Supper, the Holy Grail has haunted public imagination for centuries but left many unanswered questions. Does the Grail exist or not and what exactly is it?

It is a quest that takes Richard to ancient scrolls in the Vatican's secret archive; medieval knights and hidden treasure in the South of France; Hitler's search for the Grail; holy relics in Constantinople; a psychic in Scotland; a crop circle symposium in Glastonbury; and to Paris where he explores the latest Grail fever phenomenon.

He poses the question: why are so many people intrigued by the Grail and why does it hold such enchantment?


BBC - The Glencoe Massacre

In the early hours of 13th February 1692, 38 men, women and children of the clan MacDonald were slaughtered in their homes. Despite popular belief this was not a typical clash between two highland clans but a planned and premeditated attempt at eliminating a community by Government soldiers, serving under the King. The Glencoe massacre is one of the most famous and emotive legends in Scottish History, yet it remains as one of the most over-simplified and misunderstood. It is a story of power games, betrayal and slaughter under trust. This is the compelling story of the Glencoe massacre.


Monday, October 19, 2009

National Geographic's Worlds Last Great Places Lake Tanganyika

The National Geographic Channel will be airing Jewel of the Rift, an award-winning documentary on the wildlife and evolutionary history of Africa's Lake Tanganyika. This lake is the source of a variety of african cichlids found in the hobby today, as well as other unique forms of wildife. The film illustrates the natural behaviors and origins of the many familiar cichlids we keep in our aquariums.


Saturday, October 17, 2009

Mysteries of Easter Island

Few places have caused so much speculation about the past as Easter Island with its nearly 900 stone statues. Some of the "heads" are up to 65 feet long and weigh many metric tons. How the statues were made and moved provoked wild speculation. The islanders themselves say that a magical force called "mana" was used to move them. This, their size, and their orientation looking seaward caused Von Daniken to suggest that extraterrestrials assisted. More down to earth explanations have also been fanciful. The 1947 Kon Tiki expedition of Thor Heyerdahl, followed by his excavations as described in Aku Aku tried to demonstrate that Easter and many of the Pacific islands were inhabited by ancient Peruvians who rode the ocean currents to the island. This implicitly racist statement suggests that the islanders were not themselves capable of developing such a level of culture.

Recent work by Jo Anne Van Tillburg, David Steadman and others using excavation and computer simulation suggests that the statues were easily made and that they could have been transported some distance on wooden rollers. Using oral tradition and environmental reconstruction, archaeologists now recognize that the island was once palm-covered. The statue construction and movement was related to environmental destruction on the island, as well as to internal warfare.


A Science Odyssey

The most astonishing century of scientific discovery and technological advancement unfolds in this sweeping look at the last 100 years. Journalist Charles Osgood hosts this chronological survey of such marvels as penicillin, the airplane, the Model T., organ transplants, and space travel. Illuminating interviews, rare historical footage, and computer animation illustrate the changes that have revolutionized modern life and thinking.


Friday, October 16, 2009

Secrets of World War II

The war was going badly for the Nazis, The Allied armys were spreading across France. Hitler having survived an assassination attempt felt that he was invincible.The Allies were certain that Germany had nothing left to counter-attack with, so it came as a complete suprise when out of the Ardennes forrest the panzers spewed. But it was a massive gamble by Hitler, one that failed.


Panzer Battles: Hitler's Tanks in Action

For many the awesome image of German tanks streaming unchecked across open European countryside is the ultimate depiction of German superiority during the early part of World War Two. There can be no doubt that the immense strength, speed and coordination of the Panzer divisions facilitated the success of the Blitzkrieg tactic, and hence European domination. However, the myth of German tank invincibility would soon be shattered as Allied technical advancement and sheer numbers coming out of Russia would turn the tide on the battlefield. Made with the cooperation of the Bovington Tank Museum this DVD discusses the power, tactics and designs of tanks, as well as their role in the overall outcome of World War Two.


Thursday, October 15, 2009

PBS Frontline: Obama's War

Tens of thousands of fresh American troops are now on the move in Afghanistan, led by a new commander and armed with a counterinsurgency plan that builds on the lessons of Iraq. But can U.S. forces succeed in a land long known as the "graveyard of empires"? And can the U.S. stop the Taliban in neighboring Pakistan, where U.S. troops are not allowed and the government is weak?

In Obama's War, veteran correspondent Martin Smith travels across Afghanistan and Pakistan to see first-hand how the president's new strategy is taking shape, delivering vivid, on-the-ground reporting from this eight-year-old war's many fronts. Through interviews with top generals, diplomats and government officials, Smith also reports the internal debates over President Obama's grand attempt to combat terrorism at its roots.

"What we found on the ground was a huge exercise in nation building," says Smith. "The concept's become a bit of a dirty word, but that's what this is. We started with the goal of eliminating Al Qaeda, and now we've wound up with the immense task of re-engineering two nations."

The brunt of the work is falling on rank-and-file soldiers, and nowhere is it more difficult than in the dusty, unforgiving landscape of Helmand province, the Taliban stronghold in southern Afghanistan, where FRONTLINE embedded with Echo Company, 2nd Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment. Since the Marines' arrival in July, Helmand has become the most lethal battlefield in Afghanistan. But FRONTLINE found the Marines trying to act as armed diplomats, attempting to build the necessary trust for badly needed economic development.

"It's trying to change the culture of the organization," Gen. Stanley McChrystal, the top commander in Afghanistan, tells FRONTLINE of the administration's plan. "At the end of the day, our best counterinsurgents are going to be young sergeants who just have an ability to deal with people. We've got to give them the flexibility to make decisions."

Even as American soldiers struggle to make progress in Afghanistan village by village, equally vexing challenges remain across the border in Pakistan. "In Afghanistan we know what to do; we just don't know if we have the resources or the time available to do it," David Kilcullen, a leading counterinsurgency expert, tells FRONTLINE. "The problem in Pakistan is we're not really sure what to do."

When FRONTLINE confronts the Pakistani army about its reluctance to take out key Taliban leaders, the military's chief spokesman, Gen. Athar Abbas, argues that the accusations are misplaced. There is no truth, he claims, that insurgents stage attacks on American forces from the Pakistani side of the border. "They operate from Afghanistan. If somebody claims that everything is happening from this side of the border, I am sorry, this is misplaced, and we refute it."

Barred from sending troops across the border, the United States is left with few good options. No quick fix will solve Pakistan. "If we have a strategy in Pakistan," says George Packer, a staff writer at The New Yorker, "it's to build up the civilian government to the point where it can be a kind of counterbalance to the military and begin to reorient their own sense of their destiny. Is that even thinkable for a foreign power to do? Even as I say it, I think, why do we think we could even begin to accomplish that?"


Six Degrees Could Change the World

Earth has undergone severe changes in temperature since its inception. With the planet facing another potential change in temperature, dramatic sequences reveal the similar events throughout history. Breaking them down, scientists explain how and why these wild changes occurred, and what technological weapons the human race can wield to prevent another such change. Each degree the globe hits has far reaching consequences, for geology, the weather, biology and humans. Here, each degree is broken down and cutting-edge graphics are used to reveal what will happen to the world as it warms up, and what consequences future generations are in for.


World’s Most Dangerous Drug, Methamphetamine

Cheap, powerful and highly addictive, methamphetamine -- or meth -- has been called the world's most destructive drug. National Geographic correspondent Lisa Ling shows why in this documentary charting meth's impact across America -- and the world. From rural communities and sleepy suburbs to major metropolitan areas, Ling travels the globe, talking to those who've been affected by the potent pharmaceutical and examining its devastating power.

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