The Dark Side of the London Olympics (Part 3/4)

Uploaded by vice on Jul 30, 2012


RICHARD FREEMAN: We're here on the banks of the River Lea,
where something has been attacking and killing full
grown Canada geese, which are big, powerful birds.
It's interesting that at the time of the Olympics, we have
an Olympic monster in the river.
MIKE WELLS: Hello, Richard, Mike Wells.
RICHARD FREEMAN: Nice to meet you.
MIKE WELLS: Thanks for coming to discuss the great Olympic
monster of the River Lea.
RICHARD FREEMAN: Yes, well, fascinating.
So what was it you saw, and when?
MIKE WELLS: We were sat on the back deck of my boat, and
there were a group of Canada geese.
And there was one goose a little bit
separated from the group.
Suddenly, this goose went vertically
down into the water.
Me and Steve kind of looked at each other in amazement, and
we were kind of looking to see if it reappeared.
RICHARD FREEMAN: There have been a number of theories
about what the creature in the River Lea is, some of them
more fanciful than others.
Some people have suggested crocodiles and alligators.
These are tropical reptiles.
And they are formidable beasts, they can kill full
grown tigers, but they're not going to be found in the
middle of London.
It's far too cold.
Same with pythons.
I investigated a very similar case in Lancashire in 2002.
Witnesses there said there was something the size of a car
swimming around, attacking full grown swans.
And I was saying to my colleague, there is no way a
big predator can live in this lake.
There's no way.
Half an hour later, I was eating my words, because I saw
it come to the surface no more than six feet away from me,
and it was an 8 foot long wels catfish.
RICHARD FREEMAN: Whether it is still on this stretch of the
river or not, I don't know.
The river starts in Luton, and it ends up in the Thames, so
the creature could be anywhere.
It's a tradition to give monsters names.
The Loch Ness monster is called Nessie.
The monster of Loch Morag is called Morag.
The monster of Lake Okanagan in Canada is Ogopogo.
So I would like to take this opportunity to officially call
the Olympic monster of the River Lea Old Greg.

FEMALE SPEAKER: So another fallacy of the Green Games is
what's actually happening to places like Leyton Marshes,
which is, if you've ever been there, it's one of those parts
of London that makes you think that you're not actually in
London, if you ignore the pile up.
So when they started digging all this green land up, they
suddenly went, oh, there's a reason why there's been mounds
of earth and piles of earth on top of it.
It's because there's a lot of asbestos from the buildings
from before the Second World War.
Oh, dear, this is a problem.
And the other thing they've done to that now is because
it's a greenfield site-- don't know if you know what a
greenfield site is, but it's a patch of land that hasn't
actually been developed on--
once you've put a temporary structure like a basketball
court on there, it suddenly become a Brownfield site.
So it sets this legal precedent, which then means
you can then sell that land and the sky above it for
further regeneration.
CAROLINE DAY: It's been very hard for us to
make our voice known.
That's why we're here today.
That's why we have to come, and we have to make a racket.
It's not because we haven't exhausted
every legitimate channel.
Because we have, and we have not been listened to.
CLAIRE WEISS: In Waltham Forest, we have really done
badly in terms of legacy from the Olympic Games.
We've seen how much damage has been done to the lands on
Leyton Marsh.
They have dug up what was under there, the contents of a
landfill site.
And we believe the whole thing is too high a price to pay for
five weeks of games into our countryside in one of the
poorest parts of the capital.
MALE SPEAKER: The whole thing all along is
mirror image language.
It's the opposite of what it says.
So you see a big sign saying, improving the image of
construction, when you're ripping some building down and
digging a major hole in the ground.
So it actually means improving the image of destruction, and
regeneration generally means degeneration.
What is this?
This is two, three weeks worth of sports day stuff that is
supposed to totally reinvent 500, 1,000 years of London
history, and just brush it aside for a
corporate sports day.

LIZ SCOTT: The word Olympic didn't come into the games
here until 1636.
The games were started in 1612.
Because the Olympic games had stayed here since the 1600s,
the Olympics Commission came here to learn about the
Olympic Games.
So that is really special.
JAMES WISEMAN: One second, I'm just going to put my phone on
silent, and in my little man bag.
All right.
So it was a much bigger event 400 years ago.
They had things like horse racing going on.
There was wrestling, which we still do a little bit of.
One of the most popular events involved a person holding a
pig and attempting to sing at the same time.
Well, it's a piglet, really, rather than a pig, but if you
imagine the piglet, it's going to wriggle quite a lot, and so
you've got to try and hold it while
singing at the same time.
Climbing the greasy pole, where women would scramble to
get to the top of a greasy pole and retrieve some
petticoats from the top, which they then won.
PETE "BUZZSAW" HOLLAND: When you learn swordsmanship with a
traditional English backsword such as this, which is the
steel sword, obviously when you're training to sword
fight, it's a very dangerous art and skill to learn.
So traditionally, people would use a wooden
waster, use the cudgel.
PHILLIP PITT: Basically, you're out to hit anywhere.
Try to be careful of, obviously, the groin area.
It's quite painful.
I got my kneecap split open with a steel a couple of
months ago.
That wasn't pleasant.
Very serious, drew blood.
PETE "BUZZSAW" HOLLAND: Originally, opposed to
fighting for a prize bag of money, you would fight for a
good hat with a good cockade of feathers.
If at the end of the day that you won and you became
champion, just wearing the hat around the local community was
such a symbol of kudos, if you like.
JED "JOKER" PASCOE: It was super 16th century, 17th
century bling.
JAMES WISEMAN: Shin kicking is probably the most popular
event for spectators.
Personally, I don't see why they couldn't have shin
kicking in the Olympics.
There's certainly some other sports in the Olympics which I
think you could quite easily replace.
Probably synchronized swimming could be
replaced with shin kicking.
I think people just like watching people get hurt.
MALE SPEAKER: I like this because it is a community
event, whereas the hardest sport lover in the middle of
London is going to be hard pushed to feel it's really on
their store step as a community event.
JAMES WISEMAN: This has always been
about being very inclusive.
Doesn't matter who you are.
Again, in terms of the sports, anybody can enter the sports.
There's no us and them.
There's no corporate sponsors and VIP's box and all that.
It's all everybody's in it together.

MALE SPEAKER: You've got the manager franchises, Coca-Cola
and McDonald's.
And this is an eco green games.
Dow Chemicals have been responsible for horrors in
India, are doing the wrap that goes around the Olympic
stadium, making it look like a wedding cake.
Everything is just turned on its head.
Everything is absurd, and quite ridiculous.

MEREDITH ALEXANDER: When London bid to host the Games,
we promised the world that we would have the most
sustainable Games ever.
And until January, I was a member of something called the
Commission for a Sustainable London 2012.
We were asked to look at the deal that the London Games
organizers had with Dow Chemical.
And the more I looked into it, the more compelling evidence
was presented to me by organizations like Amnesty
International and the Bhopal Medical Appeal to show that
Dow Chemical bears
responsibility for this tragedy.
In the end, I wasn't able to feel comfortable being part of
a body that defended Dow Chemical and claimed that it
was a sustainable company.
COLIN TOOGOOD: On the night of the 2nd, 3rd December, 1984,
there was a huge gas leak from a pesticide factory, Union
Carbide owned pesticide factory in Bhopal.
This was a factory that was in a very poor state, and it's
true to say that even the safety systems had been
switched off.
So unfortunately, the people there didn't
stand much of a chance.
The gas was incredibly poisonous.
In the first 72 hours, there was 7,000 to
10,000 people killed.
Now, we accept that Dow never owned or operated the plant,
as we are so often told in the media, but they did acquire
Union Carbide out right.
And they have a very strange relationship with Union
Carbide, which is one of not just ownership.
They're effectively one and the same.
High level executives from one sit on the board of the other.
MEREDITH ALEXANDER: Dow Chemical in Bhopal is
responsible for a situation that is seeing generation
after generation of children born with the most appalling
birth defects.
The tragic irony of them sponsoring the Paralympics is
pretty overwhelming, to be frank.

MALE SPEAKER: Sponsors like BP--
these large people who've been associated with all kinds of
forms of pollution--
are actually now wearing the green jacket of being the eco
heroes rescuing this wonderful park land that we're going to
be handed back.

MEREDITH ALEXANDER: Rio Tinto is providing the medals that
actually go around the athlete's neck.
These are one of the most iconic images of the Games.
But unfortunately, the metal comes from mines that are
really environmentally problematic.
And the local communities are fighting to get those mines
either closed down or run more responsibly.

BENNY WENDA: My name is Benny Wenda.
I am from West Papua.
I am also ex political prisoner and independent
leader, and now I'm living in exile.
Rio Tinto is a part of the problem in West Papua.
Even the human rights violations, our mountain been
destroyed, our river polluted.
These companies are indirectly or directly support Indonesia
committed genocide my people.
Rio Tinto need to admit it.
Their gold is the blood of my people.