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The History Hour


A compilation of the latest Witness History programmes.


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A compilation of the latest Witness History programmes.




Zambia celebrates independence and the invention of bubble tea

Max Pearson presents a collection of this week’s Witness History episodes from the BBC World Service. This week, we’re looking at the birth of a new African nation – Zambia - in 1964, and find out how the country got its name. We also learn more about life after independence with our guest Dr Alfred Tembo, head of history of the University of Zambia. Elsewhere, two survivors of a series of terrifying gun attacks in Mumbai talk about their experiences. And there’s a look back to 2003, when the worst heatwave in centuries caused thousands of deaths across Europe, and led to a health crisis in Paris. Plus, we hear extracts from the lost memoirs of Manchester United goalkeeper Les Sealey. He recorded them before his death and the tapes were discovered years later. And finally, the invention of bubble tea, a creation that would change the tea drinking world. The first cup was sold in a tea shop in Taiwan in 1987. Contributors: Mulenga Kapwepwe – daughter of Simon Kapwepwe, fighter for Zambia’s independence Dr Alfred Tembo – head of history, University of Zambia Devika Rotawan – survivor of gun attack in Mumbai Arun Jadhav – policeman and survivor of gun attack in Mumbai Dr Patrick Pelloux - emergency doctor at St Antoine Hospital in Paris Les Sealey – former Manchester United goalkeeper Liu Han-Chieh – tea leaf seller and shop owner Lin Xiuhu – developer of bubble tea (Photo: Celebrations after Zambian election, 1991. Credit: Walter Dhladhla/AFP via Getty Images)


The Eyjafjallajokull volcano eruption in Iceland and EpiPen invention

Max Pearson presents a collection of this week’s Witness History episodes from the BBC World Service. Our guest is Professor Jenni Barclay from the University of East Anglia in the UK. She tells us about some of the most significant volcanic eruptions in history. We start with the eruption of Eyjafjallajokull in 2010, which caused air travel to stop across Europe. Then, memories of the Bolivian Water War in 2000. In the second half of the programme, we hear how the EpiPen was invented by Sheldon Kaplan. Plus, how Rosalind Franklin’s research helped determine the structure of DNA. Finally, the discovery of the ancient city of Thonis-Heracleion, underwater off the coast of Egypt. Contributors: Sigrun Hreinsdottir - scientist who saw the eruption of Eyjafjallajokull. Jenni Barclay - professor of volcanology at the University of East Anglia, UK. Oscar Olivera - union official who led Bolivian Water War protests and negotiations. Michael Kaplan - son of Sheldon Kaplan, inventor of the EpiPen. Michael Mesa - colleague of Sheldon Kaplan. Jenifer Glyn - sister of scientist Rosalind Franklin, who helped discover the structure of DNA. Franck Goddio - underwater archaeologist who discovered Thonis-Heracleion. (Photo: Eyjafjallajokull erupting in 2010. Credit: Reuters/Lucas Jackson)


Pakistani popstars, and the hippo and the tortoise

Max Pearson presents a collection of this week’s Witness History episodes from the BBC World Service. We hear from Zoheb Hassen, one half of a sibling duo from Pakistan who topped the charts in countries all over the world with their dancefloor filler, Disco Deewane. Our guest is BBC radio presenter and Pakistani music fan Raess Khan. He talks about how Pakistani pop music evolved from Zoheb’s success. Entertainment star Debbie McGee, who is best known for being the assistant and wife of British magician Paul Daniels talks about escaping from Iran at the start of the revolution in 1978. In 2004 a supermarket fire in Paraguay killed more than 300 people. It was the country’s biggest peacetime disaster. One of the survivors, Tatiana Gabaglio tells her story. Plus, how one of Bosnia's most famous landmarks, the historic bridge in Mostar, was destroyed by Croat guns during the Bosnian war in 1993 Finally, the unlikely friendship of a hippo and a tortoise following the tsunami in 2004. Contributors: Zoheb Hassen – former popstar Raess Khan – BBC presenter and Pakistani pop fan Debbie McGee – British celebrity Tatiana Gabaglio – supermarket fire survivor in Paraguay Mirsad Behram – journalist Eldin Palata – cameraman Dr Paula Kahumbu – wildlife conservationist (Photo: Nazia and Zoheb Hassen in 1982. Credit: BBC)


Che Guevara's daughter and marrying Freddie Mercury

Max Pearson presents a collection of this week's Witness History episodes from the BBC World Service. Our guest is Tony Kapcia, Emeritus Professor at the University of Nottingham's Centre for Research on Cuba. He tells us about the history of Cuban foreign policy. We start with Aleida Guevara's memories of being sent from Cuba to provide medical aid in the Angolan Civil War during the 1980s. Then, the French scientist Francoise Barre-Sinoussi explains how HIV was discovered in 1983. In the second half of the programme, we hear how Australian scientist David Warren invented the black box flight recorder in 1962, which made flying safer. An Ecuadorian politician explains how she tried to save the country's Yasuní National Park. And the actress Jane Seymour recounts how she played the role of Freddie Mercury's bride at the Fashion Aid event in 1985. Contributors: Tony Kapcia - Emeritus Professor at the University of Nottingham's Centre for Research on Cuba. Dr Aleida Guevara - daughter of Che Guevara. Francoise Barre-Sinoussi - scientist who helped identify HIV. Jenny and Peter Warren - children of David Warren, inventor of the black box. Bill Schofield - former colleague of David Warren, inventor of the black box. Ivonne A-Baki - Ecuadorian politician tasked with saving the Yasuní National Park. (Photo: Aleida Guevara with her father, Che, and Fidel Castro in 1963. Credit: Imagno via Getty Images)


Gezi Park protests and MAD hijack

Max Pearson presents a collection of this week’s Witness History episodes from the BBC World Service. We hear from activist and actor Memet Ali Alabora on how his social media post contributed to the civil unrest following the Gezi Park protests in Turkey in 2013. Our guest, Selin Girit who covers Turkey for BBC World Service, talks to us about Turkey's important position between Europe and Asia. We also learn about the fighting in 1980 between the left and right-wing groups that led to Turkey’s military taking control of the country. Vice Admiral Isik Biren, who was an official in the defence ministry, and a former student activist, Murat Celikkan recount their different memories of the coup. We hear more about Turkey’s geographic connection from Harvey Binnie who was involved with the design of the first Bosphorus suspension bridge in 1973. And from Zimbabwe, economist Professor Gift Mugano, on how the country’s annual inflation rate was 89.7 sextillion percent in 2008. And finally the story of how a Nigerian Airways flight from Lagos to Abuja was hijacked by four teenagers calling themselves the Movement for the Advancement of Democracy (MAD). Obed Taseobi was a passenger on that flight in 1993. Contributors: Memet Ali Alabora – activist and actor Selin Girit – BBC World Service reporter Vice Admiral Isik Biren – former official in the Turkish defence ministry Murat Celikkan – former student activist Harvey Binnie – member of design team for the Bosphorus bridge Professor Gift Mugano – economist Obed Taseobi – Nigerian Airways passenger (Photo: Protesters clash with Turkish police near Gezi Park in Istanbul, June 2013. Credit: Getty Images)


Osmondmania! and the launch of Lagos Fashion Week

Max Pearson presents a collection of this week’s Witness History episodes from the BBC World Service. We hear about Osmondmania! The moment in 1973 when teenage fans of American heartthrobs, The Osmonds, caused a balcony at Heathrow to collapse. Also, we find out about the first peace walk in Cambodia and how it united a country torn apart by war. Plus, the birth of Lagos Fashion Week and how it put Nigerian design on the global map. Contributors: Donny Osmond. Josephine McDermott, BBC producer and presenter. Yeshua Moser-Puangsuwan, organiser of Cambodia’s first peace walk. Parul Akhter, a sewing machinist who survived the Rana Plaza building collapse. Oscar Maynez, a forensic scientist who used to work in the Mexican border town of Ciudad Juarez where hundreds of young women were kidnapped or killed. Paula Flores, the mother of one of the murdered girls. Omoyemi Akerele who organised the first Lagos Fashion Week. (Photo: Donny Osmond greets fans at Heathrow airport. Credit: George Stroud/Express/Hulton Archive via Getty Images)


Marking 50 years since the 1973 global oil crisis

Max Pearson presents a collection of this week’s Witness History episodes from the BBC World Service. To mark 50 years since the global oil crisis, we’re focusing on oil - from discovery to disaster. We hear from Dr Fadhil Chalabi, then the deputy secretary general of Opec (Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries) about what happened during the 1973 crisis. Our guest Helen Thompson, Professor of Political Economy at Cambridge University, explains why oil became the lifeblood of industrial economies during the last two centuries. We also learn how Kazakhstan signed ‘the deal of the century’ to become a fossil fuel powerhouse thanks to the Tengiz Oil Field. Plus, why in 1956, not everyone welcomed the discovery of oil in the Nigerian village of Oloibiri. We find out more about the devastating impact of one of the world’s largest oil spills - when the Amoco Cadiz tanker ran aground off the coast of France in 1978. The wreck released more than 220,000 tonnes of crude oil into the sea. And finally, how an indigenous community in the Ecuadorian Amazon fought a court battle to protect their land from oil drilling – and won. Contributors: Dr Fadhil Chalabi – former deputy secretary general of Opec Professor Helen Thompson - Professor of Political Economy at Cambridge University Bruce Pannier - Central Asia news correspondent Chief Sunday Inengite – chief of Oloibiri, Nigeria Marguerite Lamour – former secretary to Alphonse Arzel, the mayor of Ploudalmézeau in France Jose Gualing - former Sarayaku president Ena Santi - Sarayaku community leader (Photo: Oil rig. Credit: Fairfax Media via Getty Images via Getty Images)


The Lampedusa disaster and cat cafes

Max Pearson presents a collection of this week’s Witness History episodes from the BBC World Service. We hear about the sinking of a migrant boat off Lampedusa in 2013 which was one of the Mediterranean’s worst shipwrecks. Also, we find out about Wally Hendrickson, the US physicist who volunteered to be dropped into the front line of the Vietnam War to remove fuel rods from a reactor. Plus, the opening of the world's first cat cafe in Taipei, Taiwan, in 1998. Contributors: Amnasager Araya who survived the Lampedusa tragedy after being rescued by Vito Fiorino. Annalisa Camilli, correspondent for Internazionale magazine. Wally Hendrickson who removed the fuel rods from the reactor in Vietnam. André Turcat, the French pilot of Concorde’s maiden flight. The star of the telenovela, Kassandra, Coraima Torres, and Tony Paez who distributed the show. Tracy Chang, founder of the first cat cafe in Taiwan. (Photo: A woman on a boat heading for Lampedusa. Credit: Getty Images)


Nazi eugenics and the year of the vuvuzela

Max Pearson presents a collection of this week’s Witness History episodes from the BBC World Service. We hear about the people with disabilities who were sterilised in Germany following an order in 1933, passed by the then Chancellor Adolf Hitler. Also, we find out about the first man to descend into the “Gates of Hell”, the Darvaza Crater, in Turkmenistan. Plus the story behind the vuvuzela which was dubbed the “world’s most annoying instrument”. Contributors: Helga Gross who was sterilised in Germany as part of the Nazis’ eugenics order. This is an archive interview from the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. Dr Susanne Klausen, Julia Gregg Brill Professor of Women's, Gender and Sexuality Studies at the Pennsylvania State University. Campaigner Emma Bonino who fought for legal abortion in Italy. Explorer George Kourounis who was the first person to descend into the Darvaza Crater, in Turkmenistan. Paramedic Daniel Ouma who helped people injured in the Westgate Mall terror attack, in Nairobi, in Kenya, in 2013. Freddie 'Saddam' Maake who claims to have invented the vuvuzela. (Photo: Adolf Hitler. Credit: Gamma-Keystone via Getty Images)


Israeli and Palestinian history

Max Pearson presents a collection of this week's Witness History episodes from the BBC World Service. It's thirty years since the Oslo Accords were signed. This agreement in 1993 aimed to bring about peace between the Israelis and Palestinians. So this week, we're bringing you stories from Israeli and Palestinian history. We hear about attempts at peace - the secret talks behind the Oslo Accords, and President Bill Clinton's failed attempt to end the conflict at Camp David. Plus, one of the most dramatic sieges of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict that took place in a church. We also hear from a Palestinian and an Israeli who were there when rioting broke out in 2000, after the Israeli opposition leader, Ariel Sharon, made a visit to the al-Aqsa Mosque compound. And finally a hope of peace with the orchestra, made up of young people from both sides of the conflict, which performed a concert in the Palestinian city of Ramallah. Contributors: Mona Juul – Norwegian diplomat who was part of the team that planned and orchestrated the meetings which resulted in the signing of the Oslo Accords. Yolande Knell - Middle East Correspondent for BBC News. Gamal Helal - American diplomatic interpreter and policy adviser. Khaled Zeghari - Palestinian cameraman. Zalman Shoval - former Israeli ambassador to Washington. Carolyn Cole - photojournalist. Father Amjad Sabbara - Franciscan friar. Tyme Khelefi - former violinist with the West-Eastern Divan orchestra. Daniel Cohen - former violinist with the West-Eastern Divan orchestra. (Photo: Israeli soldiers run towards the Church of the Nativity. Credit: Musa Al-Shaer/AFP via Getty Images)


The Chilean coup and Zanzibar’s most famous singer

Max Pearson presents a collection of this week's Witness History episodes from the BBC World Service. We hear from Chilean politician Hermógenes Pérez de Arce, who helped oust President Allende in 1973. We also hear from the widow of folk singer Victor Jara, who was killed during the military coup. Our guest is Dr Camila Vergara, who is a historian and journalist from Chile, and a senior lecturer at the University of Essex Business School in the UK. She tells us more about the aftermath of the Chilean coup, and its lasting impact. Eva Franchell speaks about her friend, the Swedish foreign minister Anna Lindh who was murdered in 2003. In the second half of the programme, campaigner Frank Heweston shares his experience on Greenpeace’s Arctic voyage to disrupt drilling on a newly built oil rig and we hear from a friend and promoter of Zanzibar’s most famous musician, Bi Kidude. Contributors: Camila Vergara - historian and journalist from Chile, and senior lecturer at the University of Essex Business School. Hermógenes Pérez de Arce – Chilean politician. Joan Jara – widow of Victor Jara. Eva Franchell – Anna Lindh’s former press secretary and best friend. Maryam Hamdani - friend and promoter of Bi Kidude. (Photo: President Salvador Allende. Credit: Bettman/Getty Images)


Historic Korean summit and goat island

Max Pearson presents a collection of this week's Witness History episodes from the BBC World Service. Our guest is Jean H. Lee, an American journalist who has covered both North and South Korea extensively. Jean is also the co-host of the BBC World Service podcast, The Lazarus Heist. She tells us more about the relationship between the two countries. The programme begins with the historic meeting between North and South Korea's leaders almost 50 years after the Korean War. We hear from Sameh Elbarky who was in Cairo's Rabaa al-Adawiya Square on the day the army killed hundreds of protestors following a military coup. In the second half of the programme, British black activists recount how they protested against racism within the local bus company in Bristol in 1963. One of the first Chinese students to arrive in the US in the early 1980s following the Cultural Revolution shares her experience. Finally, how the Mexican island of Guadalupe was saved from being destroyed by hungry goats. Contributors: Jean H. Lee - American journalist and the co-host of the BBC's The Lazarus Heist podcast. Professor Chung-in Moon - South Korean special delegate. Sameh Elbarky - survivor of the Rabaa massacre. Paul Stephenson - spokesperson for the Bristol Bus Boycott. Roy Hackett - Bristol Bus Boycott protestor. Zha Jianying - Chinese American writer. Professor Exequiel Ezcurra - conservationist. (Photo: North and South Korean leaders meet at the summit in 2000. Credit: Reuters)


Ireland's 'ghost estates' and the first Rose of Tralee

Max Pearson presents a collection of Witness History stories from the BBC World Service, this week we are focusing on Irish history. In 2006, Ireland’s economic boom, known as the Celtic Tiger, ended. It meant thousands of people, like Michelle Burke, were left devastated as house construction stopped. In 1959, Tralee, in Ireland, hosted a festival to promote the town and build Irish connections around the world. The Rose of Tralee is now one of Ireland’s oldest and largest festivals. Veteran RTE broadcaster and author, Joe Duffy, walks us through the significance of the Celtic Tiger. At Easter 1916, a small army of Irish rebels attempted to start a revolution against British rule. They held out for more than a week against a massive British military response, but the insurrection ultimately failed. Also, how electrification lit up rural Ireland for the first time, despite concerns about its potential dangers. And how a group of women fought against a sexist tradition, that prevented them from taking a dip in a popular swimming spot. Contributors: Michelle Burke - lived through the Celtic Tiger boom and bust. Alice O’Sullivan - first Rose of Tralee winner. Joe Duffy - broadcaster and author. Mary Dorcey - poet, writer and women’s rights activist. (Photo: Deserted 'ghost estate' in Ireland. Credit: Tim Graham/Getty Images)


Judy Garland's legacy and the Benin Bronzes

A compilation of this week's Witness History episodes. Gerald Clarke, the author of Get Happy: The Life of Judy Garland, speaks to Max Pearson about the legacy of the stage and screen actress who died in 1969. We also look at how a chance encounter led to the return of two of the looted Benin Bronzes, ancient artworks which were among thousands stolen from Benin City by the British Army in 1897. And we head back to 2008, when a nine-year-old boy tripped over a fossil that would lead to one of the most important discoveries in the history of human evolution. Contributors: Author Gerald Clarke John Kelsch from the Judy Garland Museum Production assistant Rosalyn Wilder Retired police officer Tim Awoyemi Matt Berger who discovered the Australopithecus sediba fossil Hedayat Matine-Daftary, grandson of Mohammed Mossadeq (Photo: Judy Garland during a press conference in 1963. Credit: Central Press/Getty Images)


Presidential diamonds and Tupperware parties

Max Pearson presents a collection of this week’s Witness History stories from the BBC World Service. Journalist Claude Angeli discovered French President Valéry Giscard d'Estaing received diamonds from a depraved African emperor, which contributed to him losing the presidential election in 1981. How Bosnia’s small Jewish community helped people from all sides of the conflict, during the siege of Sarajevo in the early 1990s. The story of the gang of thieves, who held up a British Royal Mail train on its journey from Glasgow to London in August 1963. Plus Jean-Michel Basquiat, a young black graffiti artist in the 1980s took the New York art world by storm. His paintings were selling for huge sums of money, but he died before the end of the decade. And the rise and fall of self-made businesswoman Brownie Wise, who inspired an army of US housewives to sell Tupperware at parties. Contributors: Journalist Claude Angeli Journalist Pauline Bock Former vice president of the Jewish community Jakob Finci Author Bob Kealing Journalist Reginald Abbiss Patti Astor, friend of Jean-Michel Basquiat (Photo: French President Valery Giscard d'Estaing and Jean-Bédel Bokassa in Bangui, March 1975. Credit: Getty Images)


Dinosaur discoveries and a Berlin Wall treehouse

Max Pearson presents a collection of this week’s Witness History episodes from the BBC World Service. We hear about a prehistoric discovery in India - a nest full of dinosaur eggs found in 1982. Plus, why a Mongolian dinosaur skeleton became the centre of a 2012 court battle in a case known as United States V One Tyrannosaurus Bataar. Our guest, palaeobiologist Neil Gostling reveals how newly-uncovered dinosaurs are named, and tells us which fossilised beast was the first to be christened. José Mujica recounts his journey from young revolutionary in the 1960s and 70s to becoming Uruguay's president in 2009. Plus, we learn more about the deaf children in Nicaragua who invented their own sign language. And find out why a treehouse built beside the Berlin Wall during the Cold War became a symbol of resistance. Contributors: Professor Ashok Sahni - palaeontologist Associate Professor Neil Gostling - palaeobiologist Dr Bolortsetseg Minjin - paleontologist José Mujica - former president of Uruguay Professor Judy Shepard-Kegl - linguist Mehmet Kahlin – son of Osman Kahlin (Photo: Tyrannosaurus Bataar skeleton, 2016. Credit: Johannes Eisele/AFP via Getty Images)


West African food and computer viruses

Max Pearson presents a collection of this week's Witness History episodes from the BBC World Service. Our guest is Ozoz Sokoh, Nigerian food writer and author of the Kitchen Butterfly food blog, who tells us about the history of West African food. The programme begins with the story of Mr Bigg's, Nigeria's answer to McDonald's. Then, we hear about the 1960 coup against the Emperor of Ethiopia, Haile Selassie, from his grandnephew. In the second half of the programme, a Jewish survivor tells us about the Nazi occupation of Greece from 1941-1944. Two witnesses tell us about Pope John Paul II's ill-fated visit to Nicaragua in 1983. And a Pakistani man recounts how he accidentally created the first personal computer virus in 1986. Contributors: Ozoz Sokoh - Nigerian food writer and author of the Kitchen Butterfly food blog. Emmanuel Osugo - Mr Bigg's employee. Dr Asfa-Wossen Asserate - grandnephew of Haile Selassie. Yeti Mitrani - Jewish survivor of Nazi occupation of Greece. Nancy Frazier O’Brien - Catholic News Service reporter. Carlos Pensque - Nicaraguan protestor. Amjad Farooq Alvi - software developer. (Photo: West African food. Credit: Craig F. Walker/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)


Wartime surrenders and the birth of Barbie

Max Pearson presents a compilation of stories from this week’s Witness History episodes. In the autumn of 1945, World War II surrender ceremonies took place across the Japanese Empire. Thousands of people watched the incredible moment Japanese generals handed over their swords in China's Forbidden City in Beijing. Historian James Holland, talks about the ritual and significance of a surrender. Also, the first Barbie doll was sold in 1959. It took Ruth Handler, who created it, years to convince her male colleagues that it would sell. The plastic creation sold 350,000 in the first year and went on to take the world by storm selling millions. It’s now even been turned into a live action film starring Margot Robbie. Contributors: John Stanfield, signed surrender declaration documents on behalf of the British at the end of World War II James Holland, historian, writer, and broadcaster Ramona Reed on her father Dean Reed who became known as ‘Red Elvis’ Vents Krauklis, a demonstrator in the Latvian capital, Riga in 1991 Professor V. Craig Jordan, who helped bring the drug tamoxifen to the world’s attention Ruth and Elliot Handler from a BBC documentary broadcast in the 1990s (Photo: Barbie in her various incarnations. Credit: Ian Waldie/Getty Images)


Five great inventions that changed the world

Max Pearson presents a selection of this week’s Witness History stories. In 1999, Aibo: the world's first robot dog, hit the shops in Japan and sold out in just 20 minutes. We hear from Toshitada Doi who spent six years on the project when he worked at Sony. Plus we hear from Dr Ella Haig about the development of artificial intelligence. Japanese software developer Shigetaka Kurita created the first emoji in 1999. Valerie Hunter Gordon, from England, invented disposable nappies in 1947 after the birth of her third child. We hear from Valerie’s son, Nigel Hunter Gordon. Hungarian journalist László Bíró was sick of smudging the ink from his fountain pen and so he invented the ballpoint pen in 1938. Finally, a Hungarian architect Ernő Rubik invented what's known as the Rubik's Cube. Contributors: Toshitada Doi on developing Aibo: The world's first robot dog Dr Ella Haig, Reader in Artificial Intelligence, in the School of Computing at the University of Portsmouth in the UK Japanese software developer Shigetaka Kurita, who created the first emoji Nigel Hunter Gordon, the son of Valerie Hunter Gordon, on disposable nappies Hungarian journalist László Bíró, the inventor of the ballpoint pen Hungarian architect Ernő Rubik, the inventor of the Rubik's Cube (Photo: The original Aibo. Credit: Jun Sato/WireImage via Getty Images)


Tourism arrives in the Maldives and a royal night out

Max Pearson presents a selection of this week’s Witness History stories. In 1972, tourists arrived in the Maldives for the first time. We hear from one of the people who made it happen, plus analysis of the growth of tourism around South East Asia with Ploysri Porananond. Also, on the 75th anniversary of the National Health Service in the UK, one of the first doctors shares his experience. Lawyers for both the prosecution and defence of concentration camp guard John Demjanjuk, discuss his trial. The election in India, of what was to be the longest serving democratically elected government in the world. Finally, a night out to remember, with Princess Diana, Freddie Mercury and Kenny Everett. Contributors: Ahmed Naseem on bringing tourism to the Maldives Ploysri Porananond, head of the centre for tourism research at Chiang Mai University in Thailand Dr John Marks on the formation of the NHS in 1948 Lawyer Yoram Sheftel, who acted in defence of John Demjanjuk Lawyer Eli Gabay, who prosecuted John Demjanjuk Mohammad Salim, former Communist Party of India (Marxist) leader Cleo Rocos, on her night out with Princess Diana, Freddie Mercury and Kenny Everett (Photo: Early tourists enjoy the Maldives in the 1970s Credit: Kurumba)