Do you want to learn English? You can improve your English skills by watching this video. Listening to the English language in this English lesson will help you learn new English phrases and improve your English fluency.
If you don't read the newspaper, you're uninformed. If you read the newspaper, you're mis-informed.
⭐ Mark Twain
If you are studying for the English as a Second Language (ESL) or Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) exams, our English lessons will help you comprehend and understand English better.
This English lesson will highlight difficult any English words and help you understand them. The lesson will teach you how to spell hard words and will explain them to you in ways that will help you remember them.
- Protest: When people show they are not happy with something by saying it loudly or by gathering together.
- Placards: Signs or posters that people carry in protests to show their message.
- Censorship: When someone in power stops information from being shared or seen.
- Armageddon: A big event that could end the world.
- Hemispheres: Half of a sphere or globe, often used to talk about parts of the Earth.
- Vested: When someone has a strong interest or right in something.
- Evacuate: To leave a place quickly, often because it is not safe.
- Transmitting: Sending out messages or signals using radio, television, or similar ways.
- Insure: To pay money to a company who will then pay you if something bad happens to something you own.
Hi there. Today, let's do a podcast about the news. I haven't done a news podcast for a little while, so let's put that right. We know that you like these ones. What happens is I choose several items of news and I run through those news stories in English. You're probably already familiar with those news items, but it gives you an opportunity to learn the grammar and the vocabulary and the useful phrases that you need to describe those news stories.
So listen to this podcast a number of times until you understand all of it.
Hello, I’m Hilary, and you’re listening to Adept English. We will help you to speak English fluently. All you have to do is listen. So start listening now and find out how it works.
OK? So let's go straight away for a big news item. Protests in Iran. So that country name again, Iran, I R A N in English. And a protest? P R O T E S T. A 'protest' means an action, which makes your negative feelings known. So you might demonstrate in the street, you might walk around, large numbers of people with signs or placards saying what it is that you are protesting against.
So protests mean lots of people coming together, out in public making their feelings known. And these protests in Iran started with the death of Mahsa Amini. She was a 22 year old woman who was arrested by the police in Tehran on the 13th of September. Apparently, for wearing her hijab incorrectly, for wearing her head scarf incorrectly.
It was reported that police officers beat her head with a baton and she suffered a heart attack and died. The first protest happened after Mahsa Amini's funeral. Women took off their hijabs, their head scarves to protest and to show solidarity, to show a common cause. It's really hard living in the UK, one of the more liberal parts of the world, to imagine that someone would be arrested by the police for wearing their head scarf incorrectly. And then to be physically beaten and to lose your life for it. Here we say 'Live and let live'.
A photograph Irainian protesters 2022. Improve your understanding of spoken English and discover new ways to communicate.
Since this time, since the funeral of Mahsa Amini, the protests have grown bigger and people are demanding more freedoms, even the overthrow of the current government in Iran. Previously, individual women have protested by removing their hijabs or by cutting their hair, and they've been very severely dealt with by the authorities, by the state.
But the problem for the government of Iran at the moment is the sheer scale of the protests, how many people are involved. School girls are protesting in their playgrounds. There are many men and boys out also protesting on the streets, showing support for the women. You can't put all of them in prison can you?
And importantly, it's the younger people who are protesting. This is why this sort of thing sometimes leads to change. It's hard to suppress, it's gonna keep happening. It's a movement and probably it's unstoppable. If it's the young people protesting, then in time, their way of thinking will win out. The people in Iran meanwhile live in fear of losing their internet, losing their connection with the outside world.
The government in recent days has apparently blocked WhatsApp and blocked Instagram. These are people's communication tools, not just with the outside world, but with each other, and I'm sure these are tools that are used to organize the protests, to organize the demonstrations.
If you're in Iran and you're managing to listen to this podcast, then know that the rest of the world is thinking of you and supporting you. You have sympathy from people all around the world.
And state censorship - that's where a government restricts the people's access to information and to news. And not only that, but there is news reporting, which is biased, which doesn't quite represent the facts accurately, which changes the story and gives a different impression. That's 'news censorship' and it's done to purposefully influence the people in a country to think a certain way, in a way that serves the purpose of their government.
We call that 'brainwashing' in English. It isn't that I completely trust the news in Western countries. Even sources like the BBC and more generally the news in Europe and the UK and the US, it's not entirely to be trusted. It's good to validate. It's good to have other sources for what's happening. There are plenty of governments and plenty of 'vested interests', people who want to make you think a certain way.
But in some countries, the news gives a very different impression. And that's what's currently happening in Russia under Vladimir Putin. Apparently the state controlled television in Russia is transmitting constantly about 'the threat of nuclear war'. And it's being made very clear that this 'threat of nuclear war' is coming from the United States and the West.
In fact, I think it's extremely unlikely that the US or the West as we're called, would start a nuclear war. I'm pretty sure we would retaliate, but I don't think that the UK, the US, or Europe would start it. What's really happening is that the rest of the world is watching nervously while Putin talks like this. And wondering if he's just crazy enough to start it, to do a nuclear strike. That's nearer to the truth.
We hope not. But the blowing up of the bridge in Crimea or the bridge to Crimea between the Russian mainland and Crimea seems to have steeled Putin. Shortly afterwards, for example, he appointed a new general. General Sergei Surovikin, who has the nickname 'General Armageddon'. Oh, good. This man has a reputation for being 'clearly prepared to use whatever measures are necessary'.
So this is serious and frightening news. The word 'Armageddon'? Well, it means 'the end of the world'. So great to know that a military general with that reputation has been selected specially. What I hate about this is the fact that the Russian people are being misled by their national TV news, by what they see on TV. It's important, even with UK news, to validate the sources. Don't believe everything you see on the news. But that's much more important in countries like Russia at the moment.
So what about our third news item? Floods in Australia? So weather systems, different hemispheres. Just as in the UK we are in autumn going into winter, in Australia, they're in spring, going into summer. It's the opposite to what we have.
In recent days in Australia, they've been having floods, massive floods. The word 'flood', F L O O D, basically means 'too much water'. There's been a lot of rain and land, which is normally dry and covered in houses and buildings and roads and schools is instead covered with flood water, water from nearby rivers.
And this has happened because some parts of Australia have received four times the normal amount of rainfall for October in just 24 hours. That's not normal. And apparently some areas of Melbourne, one of Australia's main cities have had to evacuate people. That means 'get them out', go in boats to rescue them. That's 'to evacuate' E V A C U A T E. And since January this year, Sydney has had 2.2 metres of rainfall. Now, of course, climate change is being blamed for this, and La Niña. La Niña is a weather pattern, which results in a very cool part of the sea, and this tends to make more rainfall. It affects all sorts of weather systems, but it makes more rainfall happen in Australia. And La Niña is quite an unusual event, but it's happened this year and it's the third time in three years that it's happened. So people are looking at climate change as a possible cause.
Another element of this that's problematic in Australia, apparently there are lots of houses there that are becoming 'uninsurable'. If you 'insure' something, that's I N S U R E, then you pay money to an insurance company. So if you buy house insurance, then you pay them money and they take the risk - so they pay out if the bad thing happens to your house. They pay for the damage. Insurance companies have to be very good at statistics. They have to know that the risk that they are taking on - that's R I S K - is acceptable and they're gonna be able to cover it.
And basically what's happening in Australia, their insurers are saying for many, many houses, it's too risky. We cannot cover your property. We'd go out of business if we offered you insurance in that location. So insurers are saying they cannot insure certain properties because the risk is too high. This isn't just the risk of flood, but it's also been affected by the wildfires that raged through Australia in 2019 and 2020. That's not a good situation, is it? .
Okay. So how did you do with this news roundup? How much of it could you understand? You may know the news stories - all of them, quite serious issues at the moment.
Did you understand the vocabulary? Did you get every word? Listen to this podcast a number of times until it becomes second nature, until your understanding is automatic.
Enough for now. Have a lovely day. Speak to you again soon. Goodbye.
Thank you so much for listening. Please help me tell others about this podcast by reviewing or rating it. And, please share it on social media. You can find more listening lessons and a free English course at adeptenglish.com
- Iran: A really simple guide to the protests
- Iran forces sexually assault female protesters
- Iran indicts dozens for inciting ‘riots’
- General Sergei Surovikin
- Crimea bridge
- Ukraine brutally mocks Russia
- Ukraine the new Cuban Missile Crisis
- Australia floods
- Sydney sees wettest year on record
- How climate is making Australia more unliveable
- Rare ‘triple dip’ La Niña declared
- Help us make more content with a donation
- More great phrases lessons
- Apple Podcasts