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Greek Unemployment Hits 25 Percent; Earthquake in Guatemala

Aired November 9, 2012 - 04:00:00   ET


CARL AZUZ, CNN ANCHOR: Fridays are awesome on CNN STUDENT NEWS. We`ve been hearing from some of you looking for more global headlines, we`ve got them, plus a report on Veterans Days. We are going to let Ms. Colvin`s (ph) students kick things off for us.


UNIDENTIFIED MALES AND FEMALES: Hi. This is Ms. Colvin`s sixth grade advanced study class at East Hamilton Middle School. Take it away, Carl!


AZUZ: First up, a new economic record in Greece and not a good one. In August, the country`s unemployment rate hit 25.4 percent. That means, a quarter of the entire country is out of work, and if you are 24 or younger, that unemployment rate jumps 260 percent.

Greece has been struggling through a recession for five years. The country has massive debt. It`s getting a bailout, money to help out with this debt. But in order to get that money, the Greek government has to find ways to get its debt under control. What it`s been trying so far is austerity, spending cuts to things like workers` salaries and pensions. Many Greeks obviously not happy about this. While the country`s parliament was getting ready to approve a new round of cuts this week, thousands of protesters were fighting with police outside the parliament building.

From Greece, we are going to move across the Atlantic Ocean to Guatemala. Parts of that Central American nation are recovering after it was hit by a powerful earthquake earlier this week. The quake had a magnitude of 7.4. That made it the strongest quake to hit Guatemala in more than 35 years. According to the country`s president, at least 52 people were killed in the quake, hundreds of others were treated for injuries, thousands of homes were damaged, and roads collapsed with rubble crushing cars all over Guatemala. The president said the damage of devastation could have been worse.

Finally, we are heading over to Japan. In March of 2011, you might remember, the country`s suffered its worst earthquake ever: triggered a tsunami and giant ocean wave, and that led to a meltdown at the Japanese nuclear facility.

We`ve reported on debris from that disaster washing ashore in Hawaii and in Alaska. But Japanese officials still have tons of it to deal with there, in Japan, and as Alex Zolbert explains, you can`t just throw it away.


ALEX ZOLBERT, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It`s been more than a year and a half since the devastating tsunami in Japan`s Tohoko region. And while substantial progress has been made, the country is still grappling with more than 13 million tons of debris.

About 20 percent of what remains is said to be destroyed in other parts of the country. Today, trucks arrive at this incineration plan in Shizuoka, several hours drive south of Tokyo. Officials say, these debris is the shredded remnants of people`s homes, about 250 kilometers or 150 miles from the crippled Fukushima nuclear plant. But with concerns over possible fallouts still running high, officials here measure radiation levels, before a small crowd of onlookers. It`s a well choreographed, very deliberate routine. According to officials, this debris fails to trigger any elevated readings. The shipment is cleared. The truck pulls in and dumps its load, which is then hoisted into the incinerator.

Once concerned citizens are pleased with what they`ve seen today.

There are the critics here in Shizuoka, some who question the logic in transporting these debris more than 700 kilometers, or about 430 miles across the country. Than there are those who said a government should have been more transparent.

Masahiro Kasyua (ph) says the affected area is using all of its incineration resources, they need our help, but we will continue to make our case as we`ve been doing. Carefully and tenaciously.

A long and tedious project that is not short on controversy.

Alex Zolbert, CNN, Shizuoka, Japan.



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Today`s "Shoutout" goes out to Ms. Flax`s social studies classes at Ness City Junior Senior High School in Ness City, Kansas.

Armistice Day celebrate the end of what conflict? Here we go, was it American Revolution, World War I, Crimean War or World War II? You`ve got three seconds, go!

Armistice Day marked the end of World War I. That`s your answer and that`s your "Shoutout", but that`s not what the holiday is called anymore in the U.S.


AZUZ: No, it`s not. Armistice Day originally marked the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month in 1918. That`s when the armistice went into effect ending the fighting in World War I. But in 1954, President Eisenhower changed the name to Veterans Day in honor of everyone who`s ever served in the U.S. armed forces. So, whether that was during the Iraq war, for instance, in a humvee like this one beside me, or during a time of peace, Veterans Day occurs every year on November 11th. There are services like the traditional reed playing at the Tomb of the Unknowns at Arlington National Cemetery, and for Americans nationwide, it`s a chance to honor one of the country`s 21.5 million veterans, even if that`s simply by saying, thank you for your service.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Is this legit? A document that`s faked or designed to be misleading is a forgery. This is true. Forged document are ones that have been made or altered falsely.


AZUZ: Well, you might think that as students would forge a document in order to get out of school. There is a 21-year old in Michigan who recently forged a transcript and birth certificate in order to go to school. He went to class, played on a high school football team. James Felton of affiliate WNEM tells us what happened after the truth came out.


JIM CONWAY, MOUNT PLEASURE H.S. ATHLETIC DIR.: Any time you are duped to -- or, you know, lied to, if you will, there is some frustration that comes with that.

JAMES FELTON, WNEM CORRESPONDENT: Mount Pleasant High School athletic director, Jim Conway, is in shock. He is still trying to figure out why a 21-year old would lie his way back to high school and play for the football team. That`s exactly what happened to his Oiler ball club this season.

CONWAY: When it comes to something like this, and integrity issue becomes difficult to swallow.

FELTON: 21-year old used false documents to attend a school under the alias Javier Jones (ph). He played five games for the football team. Here you see him, he`s wearing number one. After the school received the tip from a concerned parent, Nash`s (ph) true identity was discovered. He was immediately removed from the district.

Now, two Oiler victories may be forfeited.

CONWAY: He just fit in with all the other high school kids, with the 16-17-18 year old kids who belong there, there were really no red flags.

FELTON: Meanwhile, Conway says the students athletes are angry their hard work may be tarnished by one individual.

CONWAY: They are frustrated, or if not more frustrated than the adults in this situation, which was good to see. I think the kids have learned a valuable lesson, they are asking the questions why and now just like we are as adults.


AZUZ: Right now for a positive story from the football field. From a football faker to one that certainly looks like the real thing. Watch this. The pee wee player tearing up the field in this Youtube video, definitely deserves a highlight reel. 35 touchdowns, 65 tackles, nearly 2000 rushing yards. It`s amazing. She is dominating the league.

Yeah, I said, she. Samantha Gordon, she prefers the name "Sam," nine years old, she plays offence and defense in a mostly boys league in Utah. And she is amazing. During tryouts before the season started, Sam was tops in almost every drill. What`s crazy is that she just started playing football this year, it`s not even her favorite sport. She likes soccer better.

The nearly 2 million people -- yeah, 2 million people have seen her play football, they might disagree with that.

Rosalie Reimer is a little bit older than Sam Gordon, she is 15. That means she doesn`t have her driver`s license yet. But if you think that`s kept her from getting behind the wheel -- it hasn`t. Of course, Rosalie doesn`t drive regular cars, she drives this. Monster truck. She showed off her skills at the Arizona State Fair last weekend. When she is not in school, Rosalie is part of a monster truck competition circuit. She actually worked with her dad to build this behemoth, which is named detour. She is planning to go to college, get a degree in engineering, go to work designing racers, but she`ll probably still be connected to monster trucks. Rosalie says this is kind of thing you just never get tired of.

Finally, getting a caravan together might be kind of a tall order. But that`s what you are dealing with when you are transporting a giraffe. You see its head? There it is. Two-year old giraffe in Australia is moving from one zoo to another, keeper said she was old enough to start mixing with other giraffes. Besides, she was about to outgrow her old home. It might sound like a risky proposition to move an exotic animal, but I`m sure they are used to this kind of thing, they probably didn`t have to stick their necks out. And how do you decide which drivers get to be in the convoy? They probably used a giraffal (ph) system. And afterwards, they could tell their friends, a tall tale. Yeah, that`s right. Giraffe puns. Head and shoulders above the rest. It`s time for us to hit the road, have a great weekend, we`ll see you again on Monday, by now.