(CNN Student News) -- November 29, 2007
Mideast Summit - Discover the next steps in crafting an Israeli-Palestinian peace plan.
Sailing Into History - Learn about the sometimes strained relationship between China and Japan.
Image is Everything - Find out why a major sponsor is dropping out of the world of cycling.
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
CARL AZUZ, CNN STUDENT NEWS ANCHOR: Hey! You've found your way to CNN Student News, your commercial-free source for news for the classroom. I'm Carl Azuz, and we thank you for spending part of your Thursday with us.
AZUZ: First up, a "hopeful beginning." That's what President Bush called Tuesday's Mideast peace summit in Annapolis, Maryland. Representatives from more than 40 countries met at the U.S. Naval Academy to discuss a possible resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. And while Mr. Bush praised the outcome of the meeting, he also noted that a lot of important work still lies ahead.
And that work got started right away. Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert were at the White House yesterday. The two leaders have already agreed on a framework for peace talks, and President Bush commended them for their desire to work on a resolution.
U.S. PRESIDENT GEORGE BUSH: I appreciate the commitment of these leaders to working hard to achieve peace. I wouldn't be standing here if I didn't believe that peace was possible. And they wouldn't be here either if they didn't think peace was possible. It is very important for the international community to support these two leaders during the bilateral negotiations that will take place.
AZUZ: There are several key issues that those talks will need to address. What are the next steps? Well, Israeli and Palestinian committees will start negotiations next month. The two leaders have agreed to meet every two weeks after that to follow up on the talks. The ultimate goal here? To have a peace plan in place by the end of next year.
AZUZ: Turning to Sudan now, where authorities have charged Gillian Gibbons with insulting religion. We told you yesterday that the British teacher is in jail there. She let her students name the class teddy bear Mohammed, which is the name of the founder of Islam. Gibbons could be facing prison time or a beating. A Sudanese official says his country is just following its laws, and he pointed out that any punishment is still a long ways off.
AZUZ: Some pretty good comments on our blog about this very topic. "Cedrick" suggested that Sudan's action was messed up because the teacher probably didn't know about the prophet Muhammad. Greg from Mr. Browder's class asked if the kids who picked the name got in trouble. And Alex said, "It's just a teddy bear." Check out our blog at CNNStudentNews.com and leave us your comments today!
Is this Legit?
AZUZ: Is This Legit? Kanji, the characters used in written Japanese language, are Chinese in origin. This is a tough one, but it is legit! The Kanji characters were adapted from Chinese characters.
AZUZ: The history between Japan and China goes a lot deeper than parts of their languages, and it hasn't always been good. Back in the 1930s, for example, Japan invaded its neighbor to the west. And the countries fought on opposite sides in World War II. So, the sight of a Chinese military ship in a Japanese city might seem like a bad thing. But as Kyung Lah explains, it actually may signal the start of an improving relationship.
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KYUNG LAH, CNN REPORTER: To a lion dance and flag-waving well-wishers brought in by bus, a Chinese warship arrived at the pacifist shores of Japan, hoping to bridge two former enemies. All grip and grin at this dockside ceremony, but it's been nearly 80 years for a Chinese military ship to drop anchor in Japan, the first military visit by the communist nation.
The hope, says Japan's navy admiral, is to develop trust between China and Japan and move further into friendship. Friendship is something World War II veteran Masatami Hagiwara never could have imagined when he fought against China.
"I feel strange," says Hagiwara, as he looked at the Chinese warship docked at his home shores. Hagiwara says there are a mountain of issues between Japan and China. At times, that is an understatement.
Then-Japanese Prime Minister Koizumi repeatedly visited a shrine dedicated to veterans, including war criminals despised by China. Diplomatic ties hit a low, and the Chinese yanked plans to let any warship make a goodwill visit to Tokyo. The two nations have a long history of distrust dating back to World War II. While this docking is quite a sight, it's also a sign that they are trying to put history behind them. The international question now is, what does this mean for the future?
China's growing economic power and military buildup is a concern in Japan. And earlier this month, China refused to allow the American aircraft carrier USS Kitty Hawk to dock in Hong Kong, snubbing Japan's closest ally. But all that appeared forgotten in a warm diplomatic meeting between the prime ministers last week. "We should try to forget the past," says this war veteran. And if he can, perhaps so too can these countries. Kyung Lah, CNN, Tokyo.
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AZUZ: Time for the Shoutout! In which of these sports would you find the Tour de France? If you think you know it, shout it out! Is it: A) Yachting, B) Stock car racing, C) Cycling or D) Jai alai? You've got three seconds -- GO! The Tour de France is a grueling bicycle race that covers more than 2,000 miles through Europe. That's your answer and that's your Shoutout!
AZUZ: One of the biggest organizations in cycling has been dumped by its sponsor. Now, endorsements are virtually everywhere in professional sports. Sure, the Steelers and Lakers aren't named after corporations, but their home stadiums are. And you'll find teams named for companies throughout last year's Tour de France lineup as well. Jim Boulden explains why a major sponsor is getting out of the cycling world.
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JIM BOULDEN, CNN REPORTER: Professional sports could not thrive without big name corporate sponsors. But separating controversy from a company's image is a problem, something German firm T-Mobile now faces. It's decided to cut ties with cycling, including the team that bore its name. Parent Deutsche Telekom is fed up with all the doping scandals.
PHILIP SCHINDERA, DEUTSCHE TELEKOM: We ourselves feel very sorry about what has happened. We had a very senior and a very experienced management who clearly stand for the fight against doping, and we would have loved to go further. But under the given circumstances, it didn't make sense anymore.
BOULDEN: Sponsorship is a big chunk of many marketing budgets, but it's always full of risks. Michael Jackson was dumped by Pepsi and others years ago. And it's a good guess that Britney Spears hasn't gotten any endorsement offers lately. Model Kate Moss was dumped by sponsors, including Burberry, after she was caught on camera allegedly using cocaine. But she was not left in the wilderness for long. Moss was signed up by labels like Bulgari, Versace and Calvin Klein. Sponsors fall in and out of love faster with celebs than with events. After all, T-Mobile stayed with cycling for 16 years, trying to rise above the scandals.
STEVE CHELIOTIS, SUPER BRANDS: The brand can say, "Well, we're not endorsing those individuals or those individual teams. What we are endorsing is the overall program," if you like. With a celebrity, you can't really do that. And therefore, brands are much more likely to make snapshot decisions and tear up their contracts.
BOULDEN: A celebrity is seen as part of a company's image and values. That's why safe ones continue to pile on the deals. David Beckham just signed with Armani to sell underwear, to go along with everything else he fronts. And race car driver Lewis Hamilton is the newest darling of the race track and the sponsorship world. Some predict the 22-year-old driver could one day overtake Tiger Woods to be the ultimate pitch man, as long as he and his sport keep a relatively clean image. Jim Boulden, CNN, London.
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Before We Go
AZUZ: And finally today, we've got a story about a young boy and his pet. And this animal sheds just like a dog or a cat. But we'd like you to think bigger, a lot bigger, and with no legs. Lewis Vaughan Jones explains for us.
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LEWIS VAUGHAN JONES, ITN NEWS: To say it's an unusual friendship is probably an understatement. But Sam Bang likes nothing better than curling up with his pet python. In fact, he refuses to go to sleep without it. During the day, while he plays with it, he tries to teach it tricks. But sometimes it's just a relaxing way to get around.
The boy's father says his boy and the snake are the same age, and they've been living happily together for seven years. But his father wasn't always so keen on the python; he tried to get rid of it three times, but it just kept coming back. So, he gave up and called it "Chamran," which means lucky. The family and villages say it brings them good fortune. Many people in the Kandal province of Cambodia believe the strange relationship is supernatural. The Burmese python is nearly five meters long. And it might look docile, but it could potentially squeeze people to death. So, it really is lucky they get along so well. Lewis Vaughan Jones, ITN News.
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AZUZ: A childhood pet that you'll never outgrow. And that snake story is the tail end of today's show. Thanks for watching, everyone. I'm Carl Azuz. E-mail to a friend