300 episodes

History as told by the people who were there.

Witness History BBC

    • History

History as told by the people who were there.

    An Antarctic mystery

    An Antarctic mystery

    In 1985, human remains were found by chance on a remote island in Antarctica by Chilean biologist Dr Daniel Torres. But whose were they? It would take years to determine their remarkable origin. We speak to Dr Torres about his discovery and how it revealed an unknown chapter of indigenous South American history.

    Photo: Skull discovered on LIvingstone Island, Antarctica in 1985 (D.Torres/INACH)

    • 9 min
    Saving Antarctica

    Saving Antarctica

    In October 1991, an international protocol to protect the world’s last wilderness, Antarctica, from commercial exploitation was agreed at a summit in Madrid. The agreement was the result of a long campaign by environmental organisations to stop oil and gas companies being allowed to explore the continent. Louise Hidalgo has been talking to Kelly Rigg from Greenpeace.

    Picture: Blue icebergs in Antarctica (Credit: Getty Images)

    • 9 min
    Saddam Hussein's 'Supergun'

    Saddam Hussein's 'Supergun'

    An insider's account of Project Babylon, the plan to build the largest gun in the world for Saddam Hussein's Iraq. The "Supergun" was the brainchild of Canadian artillery maverick, Dr Gerald Bull. He'd long wanted to build a gun capable of launching satellites into space. In the 1980s Saddam Hussein agreed to fund this plan. But was it a science project or a weapon? In 1990, the "Supergun" hit the headlines and it became an international scandal. Alex Last spoke to Chris Cowley an engineer who worked on Project Babylon,. Appropriately enough he has also become an author of thrillers. His latest book is called Without A Shadow.

    Photo: UN inspectors visit the site of the 350mm (baby) Super Gun in Iraq. After the Gulf War, the gun components were broken up and destroyed.(UN)

    • 14 min
    Fighting oil pollution with art in Nigeria

    Fighting oil pollution with art in Nigeria

    "Battle Bus" was a sculpture made by Sokari Douglas Camp in memory of Nigerian environmentalist Ken Saro Wiwa and eight other activists who were controversially executed in 1995. The sculpture was seized and impounded by Nigerian port authorities in 2015 when the art work was shipped to Nigeria. Sokari Douglas Camp talks to Rebecca Kesby about growing up in the Niger Delta and how it's shaped her art work.

    PHOTO: "Battle Bus" by Sokari Douglas Camp on show in London in 2015 (Sam Roberts Photography).

    • 9 min
    How meditation changes your brain

    How meditation changes your brain

    In 2002, scientists in the US began performing a landmark series of experiments on Buddhist monks from around the world. The studies showed that the brains of experienced meditators alter, allowing them to focus better and manage their emotions. Alejandra Martins talks to Professor Richard Davidson of the Center for Healthy Minds at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

    PHOTO: A monk taking part in the experiment (Center for Healthy Minds).

    • 12 min
    The Pale Blue Dot

    The Pale Blue Dot

    In February 1990, the Nasa space probe Voyager took a famous photo of Earth as it left the Solar System. Seen from six billion kilometres away, our planet appears as a mere dot lit up by the Sun, and the image is credited with giving humanity a sense of our small place in the Universe. Darryll Morris speaks to Nasa planetary scientist, Candice Hansen, who worked on the Voyager programme. The programme is a Made-In-Manchester Production.

    Photo: The Earth seen as a pale blue dot in a band of sunlight (Nasa)

    • 9 min

Customer Reviews

Edward Esposito ,

I wish

...I could give this program 10 stars. Excellent, well-written reporting and use of archival and interview audio providing actual events and people in perspective.

freechicken ,

I love it so much

437999

Weldon with a tail ,

Killed by commercials

This was one of my favorite podcasts. I usually like to listen to 5 or so in a row since they are short, but now they run a commercial before and after each one. I understand that they need to make money but the same commercial over and over and over and over has stopped me from listening.

Top Podcasts In History

Listeners Also Subscribed To

More by BBC