Words in the News
【新闻用语】中文讲解录音每周二在网上发布，有关英语新闻报导原文Words in the News一般是星期五在网上发表。
Morocco quake rescue
B>Day has broken on a desolate scene in the Rif mountain region of Morocco. In al-Hoceima, people spent the night huddled together under makeshift plastic tents. They have either been made homeless by the earthquake or are simply too scared to stay inside, as aftershocks rattle through the city, a terrifying reminder of Tuesday's devastation.
For those in the mountain villages scattered around al-Hoceima, desperation is turning to tragedy. Rescue workers have been unable to get to the worst hit areas where they believe whole families have been buried alive as their homes collapsed. Volunteers have worked through the night, but they are poorly trained and plainly under-equipped, often using their bare hands to clear rubble.
They hope that today digging equipment and expertise will reach this inaccessible mountain region. But with the new day has dawned the knowledge that for the families in the isolated rural villages here help almost certainly comes too late. Already talk has turned from what can be done to rescue survivors from the rubble to what can be done for a homeless population already mourning their dead.
London congestion charge
The congestion charge which is imposed from early in the morning until mid-evening certainly reduced the number of vehicles going into central London. However, because more cars than expected stayed outside the charge zone it has raised less money than was predicted for city coffers. One hundred and twenty million dollars was collected from charge payers rather than the two hundred and thirty million hoped for.
The money is supposed to be spent on improving public transport. There is some conflict over whether the scheme has damaged business. According to one recent survey 72 per cent of London businesses say it's working. However, another survey by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors claims that 90 per cent of retailers are critics.
Some business people have benefited. Sales of motor scooters are up, for example, and taxi drivers report that they can do more jobs in the day because they spend less time stuck in traffic. However, big retail stores are likely to be at the forefront of a campaign against a plan by the Mayor of London, Ken Livingstone, to expand the congestion charge area.
Iran's revolution - the 25th anniversary
This year's celebration finds the Islamic revolution deep in crisis over next week's general elections. Nobody really knows what direction the country will take in the aftermath.
Many people saw the massive election victories of the reformists from 1997 on, as a sort of second revolution within the revolution. They hoped they would deliver the freedoms that had been stifled as the clerics imposed their grip after the overthrow of the Shah. But powerful entrenched hardliners have made sure that the elected reformists have been able to achieve little for their years in office. People have become largely disillusioned and apathetic. The disqualification of more than two and a half thousand reformist candidates by the unelected right-wing Council of Guardians has been met by public resignation, or indifference rather than anger.
Before he set off in November, there were fears that Francis Joyon would be unable to control his huge boat named IDEC. With its three hulls slicing through the water and a massive rotating mast that reached 30 metres into the sky, the boat was built in 1986 for a crew of ten. It was feared that such a boat would be too powerful for one man in the rough seas of the Southern Ocean.
But Joyon has smashed all the records, and remarkably came home to the port of Brest only 11 days outside the outright record set by another Frenchman Bruno Peyron who, with a full crew of 14, completed the circumnavigation two years ago.
Joyon's effort was called an incredible achievement by Robin Knox Johnston, the first man to sail non-stop around the world. Another British round-the-world sailor, Chay Blyth said Joyon had driven the boat like a man possessed.
Joyon was aided by favourable winds, but as other sailors prepare new boats for record breaking assaults, they may find that Joyon has raised the record to a level that will be unbeatable for some time to come.