tv Charlie Rose Bloomberg November 29, 2016 7:00pm-8:01pm EST
>> from our studios in new york city, this is charlie rose. >> good evening, i am jeffrey goldberg. i'm filling in for charlie. on friday. on died it was 90 is all. event for half a century. he came to power as an accident guerrilla leader. his fixation on the united states that defined the spirit of his rebellion. his defiance around the world made him a powerful symbol of
revolution. a fierce champion of cuban nationalism. thousands ofof americans a few minutes and, he was a symbol of tyranny and oppression. although as an obama normalized relations with cuba, his death left cuba with an uncertain future. we have an update from charlie. charlie, you don't look like you are on the ground, you pick your up in the air. that he hashink passed a huge footprint in cuba but also someone who is the leader of a small caribbean nation. he had a global profile. everybody understands that. he was in a sense the poster person for the revolutionary
that influenced so many people in latin america. who wanted to change their own his image orer in somebody else's image. that image that he carefully created survived until the day that he died. even though he was 19. they are sad about that. there are many people who believe that he was a tyrant. that myoing things limited human rights. things that showed no respect for political opposition. i want to get your members of fidel castro in a minute. abouto me for a moment whether this death has more symbolic significance. what you can pick up on the street, from the people you are talking to, does this herald a new era of openness or what are you expecting? ie: i think that will come
after rebel leaves power in 2018. then you will have more of a sense of it when both castro's will be dead. he is 85. therefore economic change. certainly not for political change. up ine seen this come russia, china, this duality between having to choose if you're going to emphasize economic change, some kind of modified capitalism or mixed economy. or are you going to change the company they did in russia. that decision has not been made. raul castro made it clear that he is opposed to anything that would not be in control. i think after he leaves power, you will see a more great reckoning of where cuba will go. the mostwhat is
interesting thing your member about fidel castro? hislie: he cultivated reputation as a revolutionary. where the cabrera poster children for revolution. people when million he took over and 11 million today. he had a global reputation. he made himself into a global figure. the exported revolution of latin america. he was a hero to hugo chavez. he sense given as to fight there. he said it was wars of liberation. he had a huge global footprint for somebody. we can't forget that bay of pigs was a big failure. then inviting the russians to put nuclear weapons in there. about the closest confrontation
with have ever had in the history of nuclear weapons to a possible dramatic confrontation. that took place between russia and the united states in 1962. jeffrey: one what thing, i am wondering if people in cuba and havana know what is happening in miami. there have been demonstrations celebrations of his death. i'm wondering if that is penetrating the consciousness of people in havana? harlie: my guess is that it is. my guess is that they do know. there is a sense of how miami sinceen connected to cuba the revolution took place. all the people who went to miami and all of those who come back to cuba now that they have access to come back. a lot of them send money back. i am sure that they are aware of
what is happening there. havew that some of them probably seen the front page of the mind. -- mine. there was a picture of fidel castro that said dead. a big picture across the front page. they know about dancing in the streets. they were surprised to see this because it was the son of a friend. jeffrey: the biggest question willou is if raul castro ever give an interview? will he ever open up to the american media? charlie: you can try any harder than i am trying -- you can't try any harder than i am trying.
jorge, i would like to start with you if you don't mind. when we first heard the news on late friday, early saturday, it struck me immediately that this might mark the end of the 20th century. the huge symbolic power of l castro. does it have anything more than symbolic power? does it mean anything for cuban-american relations? jorge: yes, it is the end of the 20th century. the end of the 20th century came a little too late. the dell had not had a role in government. not since 2006. one way to think about his ,ignificant is really powerful he really did help save many of
the events of the world was in heritage we are. -- whose inheritors we are. was preparing to go to start a revolution in bolivia. -- supportingng revolutionaries across america. in 1976, he deployed tens of thousands of troops across the atlantic ocean on cuban ships. not on soviet ships to be south african invasion. in 1986, he was the commander in chief of human armies. they wanted was they went to fight. he deployed cuban troops to another dozen countries all over the world. fight beginning to reformists. in 1996, he ordered the cuban air force to ship down to
florida.lanes to he brought president clinton close to bombing a given area. by the time he dies in 2006, all of that is in the past. cuba is now a much less significant country. by the time he dies in 2016, fidel is mainly a symbol of the 20th century. one impact that he continue to have is as a resistor. very much as you introduce him as someone who did not look well upon president obama's visit to havana in march of 2016. immediately after obama left, he criticized it in public. something he had really not done
while his brother rowel had been president. he became not only assembled but the practical leader of the attempt to contain the possible impact of the obama policy change inside of cuba. it has been a important theme in cuban politics and u.s. cuban relations during the course of 2016. jeffrey: before we go to the issue of cuban relations, i want to come back to the table and ask both of you who knew fidel castro very well. is elaborating on is a man who was punching way above his weight. my question for both of you is if you could explain the mystery relevance.stro's when we start with you julia? inia: a figure comes along
history who is much larger than his or her status or country. jeffrey: cuba is a very small country. julia: cuba is a very small country. he took office in 1959 when he was 32. he was in politics since his early 20's. 70 years of putting himself on the political stage in cuba. doing it in a very high-risk way as well. jeffrey: what was it about him that made him want to insert himself into the course of world history? punching way above his weight? julia: it was in his dna. he was born that way. the relationship with the united states was formative, not antagonistic. we have letters from him when he writes to fdr as a 12-year-old.
he came here on his honeymoon. new york cityin and washington dc to raise money for cuban-americans. jeffrey: was it a love-hate relationship? relationship? jorge: no, he was insulted. the unitedlted how states had turned cuba into a playground for the rich and famous. humans do not have their own independence -- cubans did not have their own independence. he took a regular sized caribbean island and made it a major player on the world stage are beyond its geographic size and location. he also had the insight
that antagonism itself would have some benefits to cuba in a way. it would also help propel him. if he had come here and met with richard nixon and accepted a -- aid. the antagonism helped him actually. jeffrey: talk about the legacy of this man. there are a lot of cuban-americans who believe that be legacy, what he will remembered for is tyranny. that the history will be written of this man? a subjectarely see
who provokes such strong emotion. how do you think this is going to be remembered? when the history of this relationship and revolution are written? i think your introduction put it well. your question now reaffirms it. this was a polarizing figure. for some, he was a hero. or others, he was a demon. assessment -- two part assessment should make it a good history book. he was captured. his first major attempt at overthrowing the government, i have never seen the original but the edit of his transcript and words that have appeared in a number of the obituary. it says that you can do damage
-- you can come than me, it will not matter, history will speak. i think that many of the d's that he committed -- deeds that he committed work needless acts power and human rights violations. imprisoning people mostly in the 1960's for their crimes of opinion and association and holding them in prison for very long times. none of that was really necessary to consolidate. >> do you think that history will absolving him of some of the crimes that he committed? julia: no, look at this, it is a rorschach test. if you are 85 years old today in cuba, you have a daughter or a son that is the head of the ob/gyn clinic at the most
important hospital in savannah, that is not a demon, this is a man who changed your family's life. if you are someone who had their parents put in jail and saw the dark side of that treatment of that major revolution that he represented, of course there is a far darker interpretation that doesn't absolving. it will never only be one thing. let me break in for a second. that is why the best thing we can do for anyone who is viewing it is to try to keep these complex and contradictory ideas in mind because they are both true. jeffrey: he will have multiple legacies. no doubt about it. it will depend on the experience that people had with him and in cuba where you stand politically and do the whole issue of
socialism. that legacy will be the david versus goliath. the guy who stood up to the hegemonic power. versus goliath. he became a hero to a lot of latin americans and people in the third world. people will think that his legacy is that he stood up to the united states and defy them to the and. defied them to the end. he wanted normalized relationships with the united states going back to 1961. jeffrey: how do you explain that he was not happy with the normalization processes that his brother took with president obama? jorge: he may not have liked
what obama said. the cuban press created a strawman thing. president obama said we should put the past aside and move forward. he did not want to forget the past. he is a historical figure and a legend. he wanted to hold onto the glory of the cuban revolution. liked americans. when he was in power, he played host to hundreds of americans. >> we went with the kennedy family. jeffrey: are you arguing that he wanted respect and recognition? julia: if you look at his language over the years, he wanted to be treated as equal. he wanted to be regarded as much larger than the size of the platform of cuba. jeffrey: i need to point out
that this is a man who in the cuban missile crisis asked to have the nuclear annihilation of the united states. in 2010, he said he thought it -- a bit too much. it was the biggest never mind moment in history. julia: he like americans. jeffrey: he would have killed people in america with nuclear weapons. julia: complex. that is what he said. negate theot declassified history that we had.
he sent secret messages to almost every single president of the united states from kennedy all the way through to obama. at the beginning of their term, saying that we would like to have better relations. we want those relations on the of mutual respect and sovereignty. he did that for two important reasons. he was a realist and he do that cuba would be better off not living under the threat of u.s. aggression forever. even though he used that politically, he felt that he did not want to have his country treated that way. he wanted validation of the revolution to have peaceful coexistence with his arch enemy. jeffrey: it is our understanding needed the american embargo. he needed to have america as an enemy to shore up the revolution? is that a fair interpretation of what he was doing all of these years? jorge: i think he did in fact
thrive with u.s. opposition. this is a president of cuba who the act that try to consolidate the embargo into spanish and it read over radio and television because in fact it was so scary for organ -- ordinary cubans who thought they would be evicted from their homes. haves helpful to fidel to this kind of u.s. law. even though every president since that time, clinton, bush and obama had authority under the law to cancel it. from thisefit incredibly stupid behavior. i do want to pull out a thread of part of what peter was saying about his interest.
a much more modest work. one element of his with the iraqg presidency. agreementanks to the that they reached in 1994 and 95. noy try to make sure that one steals a boat from a cuban harbor and sales straight to florida. -- sails straight to florida. there is a coast guard commander permanently posted in havana to coordinate how the two governments try to prevent this
illegal migration. they can't let cubans leave unless they have a visa to the country they are about to visit. if you are donald trump, looking for an example of admiral behavior with regard to migration relations with the united states, look to havana. jeffrey: this is a novel argument that i don't trust -- buy.ill believe buy the overarching question is this. does the obama opening to cuba preceded death or dissolution of single party communist rule on the island or has it acquiesced to single party communist rule? essie inadvertently strengthened role -- has he inadvertently strengthened raul castro?
>> when obama went to cuba in march, raul castro was sitting almost in front of him in the balcony. he looked right at him and said what we have been trying to do in cuba for 55 years was not working. it did not work. he came to the conclusion that all this effort to pressure and twist cuba to implode back to revolution did not help anybody. certainly not the cuban people's interests. not the u.s. people's interest. some people in the cuban government interpreted it that way. rose that from ben the u.s. negotiating team meeting with the cuban team with arrived ats, they this point of improving
relations and said we will move forward with normalizing changinghips and policies. we think that eventually this will have an impact on your society, culturally and politically. but that is not our goal necessarily. we have a goal to have normal, civil relations. we think it is an cuba's best interest. to 2010, you go back they proliferation -- the proliferation of social media becoming more widespread. go and find a cuban that does not have a cell phone. it has jumped up massively. in addition to the internet's , telephone issue. we have people in cuba who have
opened up small businesses who are accumulating capital and involved with pursuing market capitalism. we have demographics of cuba changing quite radically. in a problematic way for raul castro. what he needs to do is keep young people with their education on the island. we have cubans traveling back on the island. we have access that didn't previously exist. americans were visiting there and cubans were coming here. i have been traveling to cuba for 30 years. it is a more open society in terms of speech and expression in the last 30 years. that inexorably is going to lead to political change and social change. theyour question about single party communism, that dates back to 1959. the cubant how
national narrative relates to what is coming out of washington. jeffrey: do you think that in five or 10 years that if the continues, does single continue?unist rule or will it be inundated? it undermine the bay of pigs. ? fidel castro really did have his post on the people of cuba. he understood the obama visit in march very well. the reason he was worried and the reason he criticized the and the reason he made it sure that the cuban press began to convey a very different image is that obama did hr a drop -- did a terrific
job. it was a wonderful speech. all of a sudden, the last prop that my justified authoritarian practices, the permanent and alertness -- relentless antipathy toward the united states was gone. i think he understood that well, i think he wanted to remind cubans that the enemy was still there. is not the enemy is or donald trump, i don't know but that is the next topic. jeffrey: one final question for you all. question.donald trump he said that if cuba is unable to make a better deal, i will terminate the deal. it is not entirely clear to me
what deal he is talking about donald trump do once he becomes president to reverse what obama and castro did? peter: he could resend the executive orders. worst of all, he could use his bully pope and the presidency. he is going to be the biggest bully of all presidents. the cubans will react extremely negatively. there is one thing in history that cuba relations have shown. it's that cuba does not respond to bullying and a man's. it does not make -- and demands. it does not make concessions.
how powerful is donald trump to reverse everything that obama did? julia: i find donald trump bening his rhetoric to confusing. this is a business guy, a hotel guy. he is a capitalist. he will reawaken the hard-line opposition inside of cuba. continue this aggressive talk. i have to wait and see because i think you'll come under some pressure come january when he takes office to take a look at all of the commercial ties that are beginning to go into cuba from the united states. hats, we can see if he ought to split it a little bit. at a donaldoking trump presidency where we are
confronting cuba? or is he building golf courses in guantanamo bay? jorge: i do not know. wouldnew, i assure you i be a very happy camper. what could the president of the united states, donald trump dubai executive authority? he could stop the agricultural byorts to cuba authorized george bush. they all come from republican states in the midwest. he could authorize stopping collaboration with cuban security forces to prevent drug trafficking through cuban air and space and facilitate drug traffickers entering the united states in that way. he could stop u.s. cuban and the collaboration
perimeter of the u.s. base in guantanamo and make it easier for prisoners in 1, 2 flee into cuba. he could stop the migration agreement that lasted clinton, bush and obama and therefore stop cuba from enforcing a child preferred u.s. migration policy. there is a lot that the president of the united states can do. i don't think the president trump will do any of that. i think therefore there is a qs -- solid rock hurting u.s. cuban relations. jeffrey: thank you so much. thank you to all of you. ♪
historically controversial figure in the united states. we have some representatives at the memorial service. jeffrey: will you be heading down? i am not planning to. you are the architect of the opening to cuba. you have insight into every corner of this. why didn't president obama speak to fidel castro? was that his choice? his brother's choice? ben: raul castro, that is the president of cuba, that is who we reached agreements with. normalizing relations means doing with your counterpart.
that was raul castro. we know that the dell castro -- ro.do -- fidel cast we put cuban americans at the central on our policy. jeffrey: let me ask you about this. , as soon ast issued we heard of fidel castro's death. he has been a confrontation with the united states for so long. let me read you a part of what the president said. we know that this moment bills -- philith powerful cubans with powerful emotions. neutral language. he has taken some heat for that neutral language.
you just talked about the fact that many cubans and cuban-americans suffered under this man's dictatorial rule. how are you not a belgian new crimes of fidel castro. ben: everything we have done is about trying to put the past in the past. the degree to which we are stirring the pot with cuba and fighting old battles only supports our hard-liners in cuba who reject any opening to the. we want to look forward. that is in our interest. if we want to promote things like the empowerment of the cuban people, that is best served by not looking backwards. it would play into the wrong hands to essentially be shadowboxing history. your theory is that fidel castro would have wanted
that statement. >> he tried on conflict with the united states. even after obama was down there, he gave a robust speech. he criticized the trip down there. he has not been perfectly aligned with his brother in his view of normalization with the united states. he said hewhy could've said a little bit more about personal suffering. how could that have ruined the relationship between the two countries? >> we have been very disappointed about not only into about that we are arguing history with the cubans. that is an argument that pagenaud and. it only serves those in cuba who want to take a hard line about the united states. i consulted with him on every part of this asset. we try to greet as many openings as possible for commerce, travel, people getting into
cuban -- cuba. cuban-americans can now send money down to cuba to have seed money for small businesses. jeffrey: others have criticized the general approach to the obama administration. saying that you are not taking into account the human rights violations. how do you respond to that? ben: we were getting nowhere. it is not as of the cuban government was about to collapse because of the embargo. we were isolated because of the embargo. we were isolated from the cuban people and the rest of the world. if you look at the terms of the increase of cuban to our self-employed down there, -- jeffrey: have you seen greater freedom of speech question mark greater access to the internet?
is: i'm a democrat who saying that the power that i'm saying, there are a number of cubans who are self-employed. those are people who now control the bread that they put on the table. there is increasing travel to cuba. that is bringing new conductivity to the rest of the world. there are huge human rights concerns in cuba. i would argue to my republican friends that there is empowerment comes from economic liberty and economic interconnectivity with the rest of the world. turning that awful only for the cuban people. jeffrey: you are the american official of a couple of generationscuban system the best at this point. you spent endless hours of negotiation over there. raul castro was in effect, waiting for his brother to pass the scene before
he embarks on greater openness? castro aing fidel spectre over his brother that was holding back progress? or did he base as a factor in his last year? ben: here is what we know, cubans were permitted to travel up of the island. an agreement to establish diplomatic relationships with the united states. these are all moves that are dramatic. even if they seem incremental. was thethat the dell leading skeptic of normalization to the united states. we know this because he said it himself. >> you think there is a huge difference between fidel castro and his younger brother? then: i don't want to understated. there is no question that raul
castro has taken a much more pragmatic approach to many issues. they are unifying their currency. what we also know is that this is the beginning of the readership transition in cuba. raul castro says he will not step aside extra. we are doing everyday we can to empower the reform in cuba. if we shut the door right now, all it does is to incentivize us to turn around. like thethis sounds conversation we had about iran. another country that president obama tried to open for america. there is a discourse in iran that there are moderates and hard-liners. we should align with the moderates and help them. one of the ways to help them is not by provoking the hard-liners. that the model that you're
using in cuba? we haven't seen network in iran yet. what makes you think that will work in cuba? ben: there are three countries i have worked on. three degrees of change. there is a decision by the government to change their political model. they have democratic elections. that is a huge change. in cuba, the government decided to change their relationship with us. they decided to normalize relationships even with the embargo in place. in ironic, they made it nuclear. cuba, the delivered change -- in iran, it was restricted to the nuclear deal. i think that we have to seek those who are mourning reform and those who are promoting greater connectivity to us any rest of the world. if we pull back, we know what
will happen. we know that there are hard-liners in this country who drive on having perpetual conflict -- perpetual conflict with the united states. vietnam and china, fully capitalist societies in many ways that remain under similar -- single party communist rule. do you anticipate cuba going that route russian mark -- route? do think that there are some fundamental differences between what happened in vietnam, china and cuba? ben: what i would say is that number of these guys would come up to you in a hallway and say we would like to have righted ownership of the newspapers. they are very upfront about that. what we are also very upfront about is that china is a country
of 1.3 billion people on the other side of the world. cuba is 90 miles from florida with an enormous community in florida. are waiting to support freedom of expression. i think that to compare china to cuba, it is beyond apples and oranges. it is 1.3 billion people. is other thing i would say that some of the same people who draw these comparisons to policies and that they don't seem to have a problem with us having an ambassador in china. we have trade with china. they are saying that we have it -- we should have no trade with anything.iplomatic we would not tell americans that they cannot travel to china because it is a one-party state. carnival cruise ships, is
that what you're talking about? do you want to see regime change in cuba brought about through openness? a2 nominee of openness that the cuban government cannot d -- withstand? ben: we have wanted to dictate who runs cuba in the back. we wrote a constitution that allows us to overthrow the government whenever we want to. that is wrong. we'll support the process of democracy in cuba. we appear to want to inflict regime change. what do i believe as more cruise lines are going down there, there will be an exchange of
ideas. they will be an exchange of resources and ultimately the human people will be in a better position to make decisions about their own future with that connectivity. how far do you think the intelligence community in stealhow will the dude to off cubans from their cuban american cousins who are coming over with not only material products but with ideas. how do you -- how strongly will they respond to that? then: they will try. maintain control of the politics in their country. on the other hand, they need revenue. the only way that they can do that to sustain the system is through an opening to the united states and the rest of the world. i believe that ultimately the incentive for change lead raul castro to take a step that he has always taken.
in some ways, he has already gone down a path where their revenue model depends on international engagement. international travel. that is ultimately going to be a magnet for them to make needed reforms starting in the economy. economic reforms breed interconnectivity, debris internet access, access to new ideas from people who are traveling there. i think that will put cuban people in the position -- jeffrey: does it resemble a multiparty democracy with a free market system? any chance of that question mark ben: there is a u.s. policy that we wait and squeeze. we have tested that and it failed. i think we are better positioned to help. if we wait, it is easier for
them to seal the country. jeffrey: when you did engage, you did not distract from the jails. what did you get in terms of human rights from the cuban government in response to your opportunity opened diplomatic relations? allowed a number of high-profile prisoners to travel. that is 53 more people who would not have gotten out of prison otherwise. the on that, they have increased internet connectivity. but they also did was agreed to establish diplomatic relationships with us. now we have agencies who are down there on the ground working with them. we have businesses like cisco who has a tech academy down there. you have a cuban cancer vaccine in the next days. all these things are good for people. i think ultimately, the step toward normalization, opening to
the rest of the world is going to be beneficial to him and rides in the long run. hopefully, this is a long gain. sitting back and squeezing will not achieve our objective. congress, the free flow of information, that is ultimately going to be empowering. i have two statement in front of me. one is by president obama. the death of nadal castro and others by the president-elect on the are. of no one would confuse one for the other. president-elect trump stated that the world marks the passing of a brutal dictator who oppressed his people. he has caused unimaginable suffering and human rights. unless we could strengthen the deal, he doesn't define what the deal is, he's going to revisit the deal. he has spoken very harshly about the policies of the obama administration on cuba. what can he do?
you are inside the white house, you understand how this works. what can he do to reverse course? what are you doing right now, what is your president doing to make sure that he can't reverse course? i assumed that you consider this to be a signature foreign-policy achievement and you don't want it undone on january 21. >> you know as an executive of determination, we have cooperation with cuba. >> donald trump could break relations with cuba. that we have made on travel, commerce, those are regulatory changes. they took a very long time for us to write those regulations. they are not written by the white house, they are written by professionals. a much more time-consuming process. what i would say is that we are trying to demonstrate the value of that. having an and the city, the place. in a stronger closing the embassy would
self-evidently harm them. americans are traveling. who boughtricans tickets to cuba that there tickets are canceled, it doesn't strike me as a good idea. terminating that business would interest.our there is a clinical trial for a cancer vaccine with a cuban drug that is taking place in new york state. terminating a cancer vaccine is not struck me as a good idea. what we're trying to show is that there are benefits to the united states to keeping this opening. we can demonstrate that. has transformed the standing of thein latin america. every minute we went to him much in america, a we got was an earful about our human policy. we have heard in our latin america friends that this is made it harder for them. we had elevated the standing in the region that has never been the case before. results of concrete
i mark halperin. mark john: with all due respect : to donald trump, who suddenly an expert on flag -- pres.-elect trump: i don't know what all of the stripes represent. john: mr. trump, can we ask for your birth certificate? on our political color palette tonight, trump's congress, and the green party's jill sign will -- jill stein will be on the show in a few moments.