tv Fareed Zakaria GPS CNN October 25, 2015 10:00am-11:01am PDT
this is "gps." welcome to all of you in the united states and around the world. i'm fareed zakaria. today on "gps," the finger pointing on the campaign trail has reached back into history. first up, does president bush bare the brunt of the blame for the 9/11 attacks? trump's words have reignited the debate. i will talk to the director of the 9/11 commission and bush's secretary of defense. and what about iraq?
politicians love to say who's to blame for the sorry state that nation is in today, bush or obama. but i will ask british prime minister tony blair if the rise of isis can be traced back to the 2003 invasion. >> of course you can't say that those of us who removed saddam in 2003 bare no responsibility for the situation in 2015. >> plus, benefit bernanke on bringing the world back from the brink of financial disaster. finally, want to know who will win the 2016 presidential race? i'll tell you about people who have already got the answers. super forecasts. i'll explain. but first, here's mistake. justin trudeau's sweeping victory in canada could be read that one more indication that
voters in the western world are moving left. in the united states, bernie sanders, a self-professed democratic socialist. but the lessons of trudeau's victim are somewhat complicated. fist, trudeau benefited from the ten-year itch. when politicians have been around for a decade, voters usually want a change. canada's conservatives have held office for nine years and their leader steven harper is no tony int intellige intelligent. but why did trudeau win? some of the momentum has to do with his name and personal charisma. but much of it has to do with the kind of campaign he ran
which was neither very left wing nor populist. that's something most mainstream economists would support. he's refused to raise canada's low corporate tax rate although he wants a slightly lower for the top 1%. he's been noncommittal on the new trade deal which actually places him to the right of hillary clinton. he wants to legalize marijuana and he has promised vaguely that canada will have a more progressive climate change policy. canada truly lunching leftward, the beneficiary would have been its new democratic party which draws its roots from the labor movements. the hallmark of populism is anger. but justin trudeau was
resolutely truthful. this week, he spoke of the power of positive politics and sunny ways, my friends, sunny ways. when harper tried to stir up fears about canada's muslim population, trudeau loudly rejected it. he said this week, conservatives are not our enemies, they are our neighbors. if you want to hear angry rhetoric in america, you can get it from bernie sanders. but also in its right wing variation from most of the republican candidates for president. >> i promise if i wanted it, i would have gotten it. >> left wing populism is mostly about economics, right wing mostly about culture. now populism makes noise, gets attention, even forces issues onto the table. but it rarely wins. princeton history january noted that while democratic pop lists aump see themselves as embracing
the mantle of franklin rose vet, in fact, they miss history. the real ones were advocates of prohibition and ardent believers in the superiority of farms and small towns. it has never been about populism. clinton, obama, are all part of the movement that embraces free trade, immigration, regulated capitalism and cultural diversity. above all, it has been optimistic and forward-looking. one can imagine fdr bringing his head up saying sunny ways, my friends, sunny ways. for more, go to cnn.com/fareed and read my "washington post" column this week. and let's get started.
donald trump dropped a bombshell recently when he implied that former president george w. bush could and should have done more to stop the 9/11 attacks. listen to what he said when he called into cnn's "new day." >> they did know it was coming. they told them that it was coming. so they did have advance notice and they didn't really work on it. >> the reaction was swift and strong. jeb bush responded by calling trump an unserious candidate with dangerous views on national security. cnn's peter beinart on the other hand said trump was right. i wanted to get away from the campaign rhetoric and try to get to the truth. so i've asked two people to join me. paul was george w. bush's deputy defense secretary. he is now an advisor to jeb bush.
and phillip was the executive director of the 9/11 commission, the group that was formed to study why america was surprised by the attack. he's now a professor of history. the 9/11 commission did say that in a sense, the system was blinking red. in fact, i think it used that phrase at several points. but that the united states government at the highest levels was not attentive. >> actually, the commission report did not say the united states government at the highest levels was not attentive. that's not accurate. actually, president bush was following these issues constantly. his intelligence briefer at the time who later became a top official in the obama administration has recently published a memoir saying that bush was following this all the time. >> it says, given the character and place of their policy efforts, we do not believe they
fully understood how many people al qaeda might kill and how soon they might do it. >> yes, and we said that about both administrations. the u.s. government as a whole did not grasp just how large this catastrophic attack could be. that was true for the clinton administrations and bush administrations and true for the congress as well. otherwise, they might have considered more radical action about afghanistan. to be clear about the trump charge which i think is ignorant. i think it's worse than ignorance. no one has pointed to any decision or choice that was in front of president bush during 2001 that could plausibly have corrupt disrupted an attack that by that time was already in motion. so at that point, you're talking about operational level opportunities. so kind of blaming president bush for this is like saying that if there's a murder in new
york city tomorrow, the police chief is at fault. >> so phillip, how should people understand the august 6th cia memo, old history, but i'm reminding people the cia had a memo in the daily brief titled and how to understand as a seasoned national security reporter has pointed out that the cia raised 36 times the possibility that al qaeda might strike since president bush took office? >> in both administrations the cia was sounding the alarm that al qaeda was a dangerous threat. and in both administrations the president heard that alarm and was attentive to the problem. the issue that we pointed out in the report was whether the government as a whole and all the operations of the government
were doing enough to respond to those intelligence headlines that they were getting. in fact, the briefing you alluded to was a briefing president bush had asked more. >> the 9/11 commission did talk about a point in which the system was blinking red. and the cia reports that you, the then deputy secretary of defense, questioned those -- those concerns saying that maybe al qaeda is just doing this to test america's response, that it's not a real threat. >> that doesn't mean it's not a real threat, fareed. it means that they could be doing what is standard in the intelligence world which is spoofing your responses to try to see how you do respond and also perhaps to lull you to sleep when you get reports later. we did not get that level of intelligence or that level of alarm close to 9/11 which tells you something about maybe they
did go silent deliberately. the fundamental problem before 9/11 was that we were on a peacetime footing. that meant that for example, the fbi always had to defer with respect to the use of foreign intelligence and investigating people because our bias was in the direction of not using surveillance to go after people who might not be legitimate targets of surveillance. our policy was toward bombing afghanistan which basically did no good. and i think that's a lesson we need to learn today. to have done what we needed to do, the best opportunities were not during the eight months of the bush administration, but during the eight years of the clinton administration. to be fair to president clinton, if he had come forward after 1998 and said we have to invade gands, nobody would have supported that. nobody realized how serious the problem was until after 9/11. >> just a final thought. if high policymakers cannot be
held responsible for this huge attack, the largest attack on the united states ever, do you believe in your professional judgment is it appropriate to blame the secretary of state of the united states for an attack on a consulate in benghazi? >> i think that the -- i'll leave it to the american people and the congress to figure out if secretary of state clinton has any responsibility for that attack at all. from what i've heard of the evidence, of course she's not responsible for the attack. and then the issues just become issues about policy regarding level of embassy security and things like that. by the way, i don't blame president franklin roosevelt for pearl harbor either. that doesn't mean you didn't try
to learn lessons from the attack. >> good to have you on. >> thanks, fra reed. up next, the other great foreign policy debate that keeps cropping up on the campaign trail. iraq. i have a fascinating interview that i did with the former british prime minister tony blair. i asked about his regrets over the war, and he actually has a few.
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if you have an artificial heart valve or abnormal bleeding. tell your doctor before all planned medical or dental procedures. before starting xarelto®, tell your doctor about any kidney, liver, or bleeding problems. you know xarelto® is the #1 prescribed blood thinner in its class. that's a big win. it is for me. with xarelto® there is no regular blood monitoring and no known dietary restrictions. treatment with xarelto®... ...was the right move for us. ask your doctor about xarelto®. on monday night at 9:00 p.m. eastern standard time, my latest documentary will premier right here on cnn. it's called "long road to hell: america in iraq."
we started working on it because of all the rhetoric around on the campaign trail. >> pull the caliphate up by its roots and kill everyone we can find, because if we don't, they're coming here. >> one of the many fascinating guests in the hour is tony blair who was president george w. bush's most visible foreign partner on the war. i wanted to know how he feels about his decisions now that he's had more than 12 years to reflect on them. mr. blair was in london when we recorded the interview and i was in new york. >> tony blair, thank you for joining us. you faced huge opposition within britain to your decision to participate and support the invasion of iraq. what kept you so firm in your conviction that it was the right
decision? >> i had a very clear view after 9/11 that we should be with america in confronting the threat of terrorism. the issue f terrorists getting hold of wmd was for me a -- the major next die mention of this entire struggle. and i felt it important that the u.s. didn't face this alone, that we were with them. >> and of course for that, you were occasional lally derided a bush's poodle. how did that make you feel? >> you get used to a certain amount of abuse. it didn't make a great deal of difference to me if people criticized me. what was important was that all the way through, however, we were obviously heavily involved with the development of policy and we were also building the
alliance with the u.s. that allowed us to confront what we thought then and a case for saying still now is the biggest danger of this type of terrorism. you get a coming together of people that prepared to cause mass deaths with those people who prepared to use weapons of mass destruction. >> given that sa dad hussein was not proven to have weapons of mass destruction, was the decision to enter iraq and topple his regime a mistake? >> whenever i'm asked this, i can say that i apologize for the fact that the ingel tense we received was wrong. even though he had used chemical weapons against his own people, against others, the program in the form we thought it was did not exist in the way that we thought. so i can apologize for that. i can also apologize, by the
way, for some of the mistakes in planning and certainly our mistake in our understanding of what would happen once you remove the regime. but i find it hard to apologize for removing sa dddamsaddam. i think even today in 2015, it is better that he's not there than he is there. >> when people look at the rise of isis, many people point to the invasion of iraq as the initial cause. >> i think there are elements of truth in that, but we have to be extremely careful. of course you can't say that those of us who removed saddam in 2003 bare no responsibility for the situation in 2015. it's important also to realize, one, that the arab spring which began in 2011 would also have had its impact on iraq today. and two, isis actually came to prominence from a base in syria and not in iraq. and that leads me to the broader
point which i think is so essential when we're looking at policy today, which is we have tried intervention and putting down troops in iraq. we've tried intervention without putting in troops in libya, and we've tried no intervention at all but demanding regime change in syria. it's not clear to me that even if our policy did not work, subsequent policies have worked better. >> you went from being really the most successful british politician of your generation, perhaps of a larger time period than that, to being called a war criminal. how is that -- how has that made you feel? >> look, anyone with the responsibilities you get when you get a big position of power is in the end, in these big decisions, you've got to do what you think is right. whether it's right or not, everyone can have that judgment
about that. but when i think of my crime, if you like, which is removing saddam hussein and i think of what has happened in the world as we've watched syria unfold in these last years with hundreds of thousands of people dying, often innocent civilians, barrel bombs, subject to the most horrific weapons including chemical weapons, and we have stood back and we in the west and again we bare responsibility for this, europe most of all, we've done nothing? i don't know. i think that's a judgment of history i'm prepared to have. we'll see. look, i -- you know, this was the most difficult decision i ever took in politics. and i was aware at the time i was taking it that it was going to be politically extremely difficult. i do point out, by the way, i
did actually win an election after iraq. but i agree, it's been a huge political problem. i am the least significant aspect of this. it's what's happening today that should really concern us. >> pleasure to have you on. >> thank you, fareed. next on "gps," some saw the 2008 financial crisis coming. how about being able to predict when russia might invade ukraine or when isis might attack america? when we come back, people who say they can do just that, super forecasters. back again later. it's cash back déjà vu. the citi double cash card. the only card that lets you earn cash back twice on every purchase with 1% when you buy and 1% as you pay. with two ways to earn, it makes a lot of other cards seem one sided. across america, people like badominique wilkins...er
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now for our "what in the world" segment. america's intelligence community is faced with many urgent questions every day. will russia mount a full-scale war in syria? will iran honor its commitment to the nuclear deal? u.s. intelligence agencies have more than $50 billion and pay 20,000 analysts to answer those kinds of questions, according to one rough estimate. a group of regular citizens including lawyers and engineers and artists outperform the average analyst by about 30%
according to the "washington post." they had no access to classified information whatsoever. and their compensation was a $250 gift certificate to amazon. what in the world is going on here? the group is known as the super forecasters and their story is told in a great new book. tedlock has studied the art of prediction for years. he made waves by showing the average expert in fields like politics is about as good as a predictor as anyone making a random guess. his most recent was funded by the intelligence advance research products activity which invests in game-changing research to improve american intelligence. he enlists volunteers to make predictions on hundreds of topical questions, he says,
ranging from the likelihood of russia invading more of ukraine to the fate of the eurozone. his team observed their best practices. the top performing 2% of these predictors, his super forecasters, were 60% more accurate than their peers, the book says. they were more accurate than online betting markets as predicting the scottish independent referendum would not pass and predicted that opec will not lower its oil output. a big key to the project's success was to turn the art of prediction into more of a science. shockingly, he notes, many organizations, governments, corporations, and yes, the news media, spend lots of money making predictions and never truly evaluate the accuracy of those predictions.
so they gave precisely quantified forecasts. predicting when it would happen and giving numeric probabilities. what's interesting, he says, is that predicting is a skill that can be honed. and anyone with a fair amount of intelligence can develop it with practice. he and his team identified some of the best forecasters' common traits. they tend to be open minded, considering information from lots of different sources. they embrace nuance, qualifying their assertions carefully, and they work well with others, disagreeing with people without being disagreeable to foster a healthy debate. many politicians in washington and elsewhere should heed these tips. do you think you've got what it takes to be a super forecaster?
they are still taking volunteers. you can sign up on their website. next up on gps, benefit bernanke on bringing tglobal economy back from the brink and whether it's time now to raise interest rates. when i was sidelined with blood clots in my lung,h. it was serious. fortunately, my doctor had a game plan. treatment with xarelto®. hey guys! hey, finally, somebody i can look up to... ...besides arnie. xarelto® is proven to treat and help reduce the risk of dvt and pe blood clots. xarelto® is also proven
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upper respiratory tract infection, and headache. tell your doctor about all the medicines you take, and if you're pregnant or planning to be. ask your doctor about otezla today. otezla. show more of you. my next guest, ben bernanke, was the chairman of the federal reseven board from 2016 to 2014. during that time, he served under two presidents and through one extraordinary global financial crisis. i once called bernanke the single individual responsible for preventing the financial crisis of 2008 from turning into something much worse. i still believe that, but he certainly has his detractors.
he has just published his reflections on that time, it's called "the courage to act". when you confronted this crisis, you recount in the book that you and the treasury secretary had an exchange where you initially thought maybe you'd buy $10 billion of treasury bills a week. then you guys decided, no, that's too little. so you were buying now $100 billion of treasury bills a month. how did you have the, i suppose, courage to do this? there would be another word as well. didn't you feel like you were jumping into uncharted waters? >> the economy needed more help. unemployment in fall of 2009 was 10%. we were worried about inflation falling too low, hitting the deflationary zone. we had japan as an example
economy. we had to figure out what was the next thing we could do. it was falling on the fed to act. this was a strategy that the jap japanese had tried. we thought we pretty much understood what would happen. in particular, we were not concerned -- many critics saying it was going to cause hyper inflati inflation. we understood the analytics i think better. so it wasn't the best option in some ideal sense. it gave us a way to help the economy grow out of a really deep recession. >> you talked about a meeting that you had during the crisis with republican members of congress. they looked -- you're a republican, you were appointed by president bush. and they were berating you for what you were doing. they didn't see why you were doing all this. >> right. this was before the quantitative
easing. this was during the crisis itself in september of 2008. paulson and i and president bush were asking congress to pass the tarp build which would provide capital to help restore financial stability. the republican -- the democrats -- i'm not picking on republicans. we had a meeting with the republican caucus in the house. they were saying, first of all, we don't want to do this. second of all, we're not seeing any problems in our home district. i said to them, you will. because i understood you can't have a collapse of the financial system and the rest of the economy emerge unscathed. the work i had done suggested that the financial crises can lead to very serious recessions. >> looking forward, do you think that the -- there's a great deal of concern in the united states, an unease about the economy.
even though the economy seems to produce, for the average american, particularly the average american who may not have a fancy college degree, it doesn't seem to be producing. what do you say to them? >> well, it's absolutely true. and our economy is growing but it isn't benefiting everybody. that's obviously a big problem. over the last 40 years or so, we've seen fwloeglobalization, institutional change. all of those things have generally worked against the guy with a high school degree and not too much experience with technological change. so it's a very tough problem and a very long-term problem. one that we need to address as a country. it's not something that monetary policy can do much about. but i hope that we will work -- continue to work as a country to try to address this. because if you don't have -- if the economy's nod broadly
serving the population, if people don't have a chance to get ahead, really the economy's not doing what we want it to do. >> should janet yellen raise interest rates? >> i was her predecessor. i certainly don't want to cause her more trouble by second guessing. she's got some tough calls. right now, we have a recovery in the united states which is domestically pretty strong. housing is strong, consumer spending has been pretty good. but we have a global economy, emerging markets, china, which has been slowing. that has been a drag on our economy. so the tough decision that she and her colleagues have to make, is there enough domestic momentum to keep us moving forward despite these drags from abroad. >> ben bernanke, pleasure to have you on. up next, the president of one of the largest and most important countries in the
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my next guest is dilma rousseff, the president of brazil. she runs the largest country by size in south america. indeed, it is the largest in the entire southern hemisphere. by population, it is the sixth largest in the world. it's an extremely important nation, but oh how it has fallen from the days when it was the first letter in the bricks, the emerging countries that bankers placed great expectations on. today, brazil is in crisis.
the first and foremost is the country's economy. they downgraded brazil's credit to just above junk status. meanwhile, s&p has already declared it junk. the rate grew by more than 50% between last year and this year. many believe brazil could face an economic crisis that could have global consequences. those economic problems are compounded by political ones. according to reuters, a recent poll recorded the lowest ever approval ratings for a brazilian government. they rated rousseff's government great or good. i asked the president about her troubles, but i began by asking about her unique personal history. >> madame president, thank you so much for joining us. >> translator: it's a pleasure to be here with you, fareed. >> for those of on you our viewers who have not encountered you and your story, you were
part of a revolutionary movement fighting the military dictatorship of brazil. then you were jill jailed in 1970 to '72. what does it feel like to have gone through that background of really -- you've been described as a marxist revolutionary and now you're the president of brazil. >> translator: yes, fareed. i am part and parcel of the history of brazil. so my life trajectory very much reflects the country's trajectory in history in as much as we came out of a very sad chapter in our history. i was arrested for three years during that period. and during that period, all of us had to fight for our freedom. from that point in time onwards, the movement evolved and brazil became a fully fledged
democracy. >> you were tortured even though you were a woman. what did that do? how did that change you? >> translator: the only way to overcome torture is by being able to come out of it without any hatred, without any sense of revenge or persecution. but with a firm conviction that never again can you allow your country, your nation to again practice this kind of torture due to political reasons or to any other reasons. >> so let's talk about brazil and its current crisis. growth in your presidency has averaged 2.1% which is less than half that of your predecessor. a lot of your critics say that what happened was brazil had this golden opportunity. china was growing. china was importing a lot of things that brazil exported, so you had a lot of growth. and you had a chance to make the
reforms that would have put brazil in a very strong position. but that instead, that period was wasted. >> we did not miss that golden opportunity to change the brazilian economy. i think perhaps the main valuev achieved in this period was that never before in the history of brazil the country evolved to become a middle-class economy with an extremely strong consumer market. we brought out of extreme poverty 36 million people within a very short time span between 10 to 12 years only, and we uplifted into the middle class 40 million people. brazil used to be a predominantly mainly poor country, and it has become a predominantly middle-class country. >> but you will use this crisis so push forward structural reforms? >> yes. and that is why i'm telling you
that the main issue from now onwards we now have a clear-cut commitment towards social security reform. we have a commitment to tax reform. we have set up a social security forum in brazil so discuss precisely social security and the propoetzed reforms. we want to leave this legacy, a legacy whereby we take events to the crisis, a painful experience, yes, but we take advantage of it as an opportunity to engage in the reforms that will prove decisive for the upcoming cycle of growth. >> you face a possible impeachment process back in brazil. you've described this, compared it in some ways to the coup of 1964-65 when the military took over. but isn't this a case the opposition party said they're investigating deep, deep corruption that has taken place under your administration, petrobas and other aspects of the government, is this not a
fair issue to be investigated? it seems pretty serious. >> now, please notice one thing, fareed. the main problem with those who want my impeachment is their lack of motivation. the fact is that those who opened the investgate not only are allowing it to proceed but also moving and preparing institutions and giving them the conditions to go ahead was, indeed, my administration. so what's really going on in brazil? well, what's going on in brazil is we had a major conflict in the elections. of course elections are marketed by conflicted relations. that's normal and traditional, of course. you have the disputes and the competition during the elections. and after, of course, that is over, a new stage starts. so once the elections are finished, of course you re-establish political relations. it was not so this time around.
we have to be very careful about this issue for the following reasons. our democracy is still in its adolescent stage. >> madam president, thank you so much for joining us. >> thank you for the opportunity. it's been a pleasure talking to you. carved thick. that's the right way to make a good turkey sandwich. the right way to eat it? is however you eat it. panera. food as it should be. i am totally blind. and sometimes i struggle to sleep at night, and stay awake during the day. this is called non-24. learn more by calling 844-824-2424. or visit your24info.com.
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the this week's "book of the week" is not a book but a magazine. the november-december issue of "foreign affairs" is headlined the post-american middle east. it's a superb collection of essays on the turmoil and division and what outsiders can and cannot do about it. it's on newsstands everywhere. now for "the last look." computers, phones, and cameras are backed up to hard drives and servers. but did you know that chick peas and fava beans are backed up as well? look at this strange structure built in the permafrost. it is the world's largest sea bank referred to as the doomsday vault. its mission is to safeguard the world's agriculture from catastrophe. with seeds from the bank the world would have a way to bring back plant species obliterated by things like droughts or fires or worse. well, this month norwegian officials announced the bank's
first-ever withdrawal had been made, the cataclysmic event that necessitated this first doomsday withdrawal was not nature's fury but the syrian civil war. you see, the syrian city of aleppo was home to a seed bank that has more than 140,000 seed samples including the world's most valuable barley collection, as cnn's arwa damon pointed out. threatened by the war in 2012, the scientists had shipped 80% of the seeds to banks like this in norway for safekeeping. today the organization is building new facilities outside syria and withdrew 38,000 seeds from the norway bank to begin replenishing their seed supply. it just goes to show this type of backup can be crucial for environmental and man-made disasters. the correct answer to the gps challenge question is b -- 14.9% of britain's imports came from germany in 2014, but china was second with 8.8%.
don't forget my documentary "long road to hell: america in iraq" airs tomorrow night at 9:00 p.m. eastern. thanks to all of you for being part of my program this week. i will see you next week. happening now in the "newsroom." >> the car hit me as i was stopping and then i rolled over some strollers. >> a time of celebration shattered. >> never think someone could hurt people like this. >> the homecoming parade at oklahoma state university, a scene of terror when a driver crashes through the crowd. four killed, dozens injured, and a woman behind bars. today the community wants to know why. plus, dramatic new video purportedly showing that u.s. raid to save hostages in iraq. one american soldier killed in that daring rescue. we'll take a