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Episode Info: The news is in on the Noriega vs Activision case from the courts in Los Angeles California.We take you back into the extreme early days of Panama, in the 1800's when building a canal was just a dream. We work through the french attempts with De Lesseps who built the Suez Canal, right through the takeover and completion by the Americans. It's a fascinating story how one of the seven wonders of the world was created...........The French attempt to construct a waterway across the Isthmus was foredoomed to failure because the project fell into the hands of promoters and speculators. A contributory cause was the very high sick and death rate among the French employees on the Isthmus. This added greatly to the cost of administration and resulted in an unstable labor force. Many of the best engineers left the Isthmus after short service, or died, and these constant changes made it difficult to pursue any regular plan to keep up an effective organization to carry on the work. The company had to pay high wages and offer special inducements to persuade men to take the chance of one in five of surviving an attack of yellow fever which they were liable to contract. Had the work been with a rich and powerful government, public opinion would not have allowed the work to have been carried on at such an appalling cost of life. When the enterprise was started the method of transmission of malaria and yellow fever was unknown, and it was the most unhealthy place in the world.Read more ยป

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