(CNN Student News) -- November 12, 2010
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CARL AZUZ, CNN STUDENT NEWS ANCHOR: Fridays are awesome! And we're not the only ones who think so. You're gonna meet some other people who totally agree in just a few minutes. I'm Carl Azuz. CNN Student News starts right now!
AZUZ: And we begin today at the G-20 Summit, where there is talk of war! But not the type of war most of us think of. No guns, no missiles. This is a currency war, a war over money. It has to do with something that both China and the U.S. are accused of: currency manipulation. This is when a country changes the value of its currency on purpose. Usually, it means making your currency weaker. Why would someone want to do that? Well, if your currency's less valuable, then your exports, the products that you make and sell to other countries, are cheaper. Cheaper products usually means more sales, which means more money for the country. Thing is, if one country is selling more products, that means other countries are selling fewer products. Stan Grant looks at how a couple cases of currency manipulation are causing tension in the global economy right now.
STAN GRANT, CNN CORRESPONDENT, BEIJING: Currencies, the new economic battleground. According to some analysts, it has now gone to a whole new level.
DONG TAO, CREDIT SUISSE: This is not officially declared, but I do believe that the world is in a currency war.
GRANT: On one side, the Chinese renminbi. On the other, the United States dollar.
TAO: In the past, it's been one way, U.S. pushing China. And now, we're going to see two-way arguments.
GRANT: And in any battle, words are weapons. The U.S. has accused China of manipulating its currency, keeping it low to boost exports and take American jobs. The U.S. has embarked on another round of so-called "quantitative easing," pumping an extra $600 billion into banks to stimulate lending. It lowers the value of the dollar. China looks at America's sluggish growth, financial woes and high unemployment and says, "Don't blame us."
CUI TIANKAI, VICE MINISTER OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS: If they get cold, they cannot ask China to take the medicine, because this will not cure their cold.
GRANT: In the middle, countries like Australia: staunch U.S. ally, but building its economy on the back of China growth. Australian Foreign Minister Kevin Rudd, recently in China, ever the diplomat.
KEVIN RUDD, AUSTRALIAN FOREIGN MINISTER: Well, I think, as they say in the classics, it takes two to tango. So, these questions are not as simple as that.
GRANT: At stake is the very future of the world economy. Western countries are no longer the engines of growth. That belongs to emerging economies. According to the International Monetary Fund, China grew 10 times faster than the global average last year and contributed almost 50 percent of world domestic demand.
RUDD: Where would we be if China had not generated phenomenal economic growth in the last 18 months? I tell you where we'd be: in a lot of trouble.
GRANT: With the world's number one and two economies facing off, there are fears of a rise of protectionism, putting national interests above the world's. The answer ultimately is cooperation, not conflict.
Impact Your World - Honoring America's Veterans
AZUZ: CNN's Impact Your World page offers ways for you to make a difference. Today, it's focused on America's veterans. Writing a letter, volunteering your time, just saying thank you: There are many ways to pay tribute to these men and women. Learn more at CNNStudentNews.com.
AZUZ: All across the country and around the world, Americans took time to honor their nation's veterans on Thursday. Ceremonies, parades and concerts scheduled all over the U.S. People honored the more than 23 million veterans who are alive today, as well as those who have fallen. Vice President Joe Biden was part of a wreath-laying ceremony at the Tomb of the Unknowns in Arlington National Cemetery. He called veterans the "heart and soul, the very spine of this nation."
Ground Zero Waterfall
AZUZ: This waterfall is part of a different memorial, one that honors some of the victims of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. You'll find it in New York, and it's part of the National September 11th Memorial and Museum. Engineers started testing it this week. They've been working on it for years, and the president of the memorial said "to see the water coming down... was inspiring. It was great." The memorial and museum are scheduled to open on September 11th, 2011. That is the 10th anniversary of the attacks.
Disabled Cruise Ship
AZUZ: Ryan Harlan says his recent vacation was really fun. The worst part? "Being stranded in the middle of the ocean." Yeah, that would put a damper on things. Ryan was one of 3,300 passengers who got stuck onboard this cruise ship for three days. A fire in the engine room knocked out the power, so no lights, no air conditioning, no hot showers. Plus, the toilets overflowed and some of the food went bad. Thankfully, a U.S. Navy aircraft carrier showed up to help out. It brought out some supplies, some extra food. The cruise ship was eventually towed back into port, and all the passengers are safely back on land.
TOMEKA JONES, CNN STUDENT NEWS: Today's Shoutout goes out to Mr. Schneider's and Ms. Thompson's classes at Westwood Middle School in Blaine, Minnesota! In Roman mythology, who was the god of fire? Is it: A) Vulcan, B) Mars, C) Mercury or D) Cupid? You've got three seconds -- GO! The Roman god of fire was Vulcan; he was also the god of metalworking. That's your answer and that's your Shoutout!
AZUZ: Vulcan: That's where the word volcano comes from. These things form when molten rock and gases escape from under the Earth's surface. This year, we've talked about the effects of a volcano in Iceland, and more recently about Mount Merapi in Indonesia. Guillermo Arduino tells us about some volcanoes you might not have heard about and why some people actually choose to live near them.
GUILLERMO ARDUINO, CNN INTERNATIONAL WEATHER ANCHOR, ATLANTA: Anywhere from 50 to 70 volcanoes erupt every year. Typically, we only hear about them when they impact human lives. In Iceland, a volcano erupted earlier this year with a large enough ash cloud to cause air travel delays throughout Europe. Some scientists say the eruption has ended, since ash was last seen rising from the caldera in June.
In some areas of the world, locals are used to volcanic activity. Planchon-Peteroa in Chile has had a plume of gas that rises from a small, steaming crater lake since its eruption in September of this year. In October, a local mining company reported that the plume had changed from gray, which contains ash, to white, which is mostly steam. As of October 27th, the plume reduced in size and the local alert level was lowered.
Many people around the world choose to live near these volcanoes because they simply cannot afford to move away, while many stay for the mineral-rich soil that yields better crops. Others profit from the tourism it provides. Tourism dominates the economy surrounding one of the world's most active volcanoes: Kilauea, one of the five volcanoes on the island of Hawaii. Earlier this year, lava flows threatened homes on the big island.
There are currently 14 active volcanoes that outline the Pacific Ocean. Three are in Mexico, three in northeast Russia, and one in Japan. And throughout the west Pacific, many islands have formed over the years because of volcanic eruptions. Indonesia currently has three active volcanoes, with Mount Merapi located in one of the world's most densely populated areas. Not only is Merapi spewing gas and ash and halting air traffic, at times it is releasing pyroclastic flows, gases that are so hot they kill anything in their path.
AZUZ: The question: Was this play we showed you earlier this week smart thinking or a cheap shot? The answers: 90 percent of you favor smart thinking; 10 percent say cheap shot. From Desmond: "I'm in football myself; this was just smart thinking. Ever heard the saying 'desperate times call for desperate measures?'" From Joel: "I've seen many plays like this where the QB gets lit up because the other team's linebacker saw the trick on Sportscenter the night before. It was luck." Camille said "most plays and fakes are just part of the game, but this had nothing to do with skills or how well you could throw a ball, but just how sneaky you could be."
Before We Go
AZUZ: Always appreciate your blog comments at CNNStudentNews.com. We also appreciate the iReports that you send in. We've been showing those at the beginning of our program, but the one we have today had a little something extra. Take a look.
CHRIS GOLEM, LOURDES HIGH SCHOOL SOCIAL STUDIES TEACHER: Every semester, my students here at Lourdes High School in Oshkosh, Wisconsin dream of being on CNN Student News. And Carl, let me tell you why they should be.
Option A: That's where we watch Student News every single day.
Option B: The Shoutout Hall of Fame. You're looking at past champions. Each semester we compete for the Shoutout Belt.
TWO UNIDENTIFIED MALE STUDENTS: We're not the only ones pumped for CNN Student News.
CLASS: Carl Azuz is awesome!
UNIDENTIFIED MALE STUDENT: Just like Fridays!
AZUZ: ...Just like you guys. That was fantastic! Although I hope the pressure to win that Shoutout belt doesn't make anyone buckle. We've notched another full show at CNN Student News, but we will be back to belt out some more next week. Have a great weekend. For CNN Student News, I'm Carl Azuz.