Sea level rise and the island president: Republic of the Maldives voice for survival, Mohamed Nasheed

Except for the last parargraph and added links, the summary below is from the documentary website synopsis:

The Island President tells the story of President Mohamed Nasheed of the Maldives, a man confronting a problem greater than any other world leader has ever faced–the literal survival of his country and everyone in it.

After leading a twenty-year pro-democracy movement against the brutal regime of Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, surviving repeated imprisonments and torture, Nasheed becomes president at 41, only to encounter a far more implacable adversary than a dictator–the ocean. Considered the lowest lying country in the world, a rise of a mere three meters in sea level would inundate the 1200 islands of the Maldives, rendering the country practically unlivable. Unless dramatic changes are made by the larger countries of the world, the Maldives, like a modern Atlantis, will disappear under the waves.

The Island President captures Nasheed’s first year of office, a time when he influences the direction of international events in a way that few leaders have ever done, even in countries many times the size of the Maldives. Nasheed’s story culminates in his trip to the Copenhagen Climate Summit in 2009, where we get a rare insider’s look at the political deal-making that goes on at such a top-level global assembly. Nasheed is unusually candid about revealing his strategies–leveraging the Maldives’ underdog position, harnessing the power of media, and overcoming deadlocks through an appeal to unity with other developing nations. When all hope fades for any kind of written accord to be signed, Nasheed makes a stiring speech… (End of synopsis excerpt.)

At 2:20 into the second video above of the speech by President Mohamed Nasheed of the Maldives (Islands) at the UN Climate Summit in New York on Sept. 22, 2009, the threat posed by the impacts of climate change (breakdown, disruption, destabilization) to the ability of his people to survive, and the weight of his profound anguish, becomes clear.


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