Skip to main content

tv   In Depth  CSPAN  October 17, 2015 1:52am-3:34am EDT

1:52 am
>> >> your watching booktv prime time with congress out with our usual weekend coverage of books and authors every weekend on c-span2 but tonight we want to show you our "in-depth" programs. this is our monthly of their program we invite one author to talk about his or her body of work the first sunday of every month it is a call-in program very interactive with your text and the bells in the info calls. tavis smiley, isaac -- walter isaacson one person rodriquez peter schweitzer
1:53 am
he saw the authors we have had on this year. go to you can see any author but tonight we want to show you two of them. ow was coat pink founded? >> guest: we were a group of women environmentalists that were sitting together in a retreat right every 9/11 -- right after 9/11, talking about how to deal with the climate crisis, and during our lunch break we started talking about the 9/11 attack, the pending war with iraq, the u.s. had just invaded afghanistan, and we were talking about how horrible it was that the u.s. was about to invade a country that had nothing to do with 9/11, and we started laughing about the color code alerts. remember the george w. bush alerts, yellow, orange, red, and
1:54 am
said it was to keep people in a state of fear, and that we needed another color coded alert to say, there's a different way of dealing with this. we go after whoever attacked us, not wholesale invasion of countries, that's when we came up with the idea of codepink. we originally wanted to by code -- code hot pink but the url was already taken so we payment code pink. >> host: how do you pick your issues. >> guest: we started out not wanting to be an ongoing organization. we just wanted to join the masses and mobilize to stop the invasion of iraq. and so we dead that. we got involved. we had tremendous support around the country. without really trying we found we had hundreds of thousands of people that signed up to our e-mail list. we had hundreds of groups that
1:55 am
formed spontaneously in places around the country, and we were part of a larger movement that came out to protest on february 15th, 2003, which is recorded in the guinness book of world record of the largest demonstrations around the world in the history of humankind. so, our issue was to stop the war in iraq. unfortunately, we weren't able to do that. but in the process, we realized that there was a need for our voices to continue to try to bring our troops home to try to stop future wars, and to really address the issues of violence and militarism, and we have continued to do that. we pick our issues, peter, mostly by what is our government and the u.s. involved in. while we do have supporters around the world, most of us are from the u.s., and we look at how can we as american citizens fulfill our responsibility to
1:56 am
try to make our foreign policy as positive in the world as possible. so, we look to where our government is not doing well in those respects, and tried to move government policies. >> host: so, the war in afghanistan justified? >> guest: we did not think that it was the right thing to do. we thought that we should go after individuals who attacked us, and not invade and occupy other countries. we have just commissioned a report to come out in the fall that will look at the results of all of these years of the u.s. being in afghanistan. the number of u.s. soldier that have died, the number of civilians in afghanistan that have died. but mainly we want to look at, has life really improved for the women in afghanistan? and with the research we have been doing, unfortunately, there have been very few changes in the lives of most afghan women,
1:57 am
despite the fact that we have spent probably at this point trillions of dollars there, and that we have been there over 13 years. so, we don't feel that the afghan occupation in balance was a positive thing. >> host: your most recent book is on drone warfare. any justification for using drones in warfare in your view? >> guest: well, i don't like war at all so i wouldn't like any kind of technology to be used. unfortunately, the u.s. has been involved in all too many wars and all too many wars going on in other places that other countryies have started inch those situations drones become just another piece of technology used in warfare. but we see some special things happening around the use of drones where the u.s. is using them in places where we antibiotic even at war, like in
1:58 am
pakistan, or in yemen, and i think that the drone technology itself has been making its easier for the u.s. to get involve in places where we're not at war, and has been making it easier for the u.s. to get involved in military affairs without a conversation even in congress, much less with the american people, about whether or not we should be involved in those conflict jazz from your book, drone pilots sit safely thousands of mile. airplane from the danger of the war they're fighting. the only danger they face is mental. >> guest: it has been shown by several studies that drone pilots face a level of ptsd that is similar to soldiers who are in the battlefield. it is not easy for a soldier to sit at a desk and be watching the screen, sometimes for ten,
1:59 am
12 hours a day, in some perverse way getting to know people on the ground, because sometimes they are hovering over a particular house, and might watch the father playing with his children, or see the mother going out to wash the laundry or the kids going out to school, and then one day being told to press a button and kill that person. and then they're supposed to go back to their homes, pick up a gallon of milk on the way home, and play with their kids, and coach the soccer team, and act like everything is normal, and it's not. so, there's a lot of problems that the drone pilots are facing. that's why there's actually a shortage of drone pilots now. >> host: you also write about abdur al-awlaki, son of anwar
2:00 am
al-awlaki. >> his family moved back to yemen, his father was killed by a u.s. drone strike, and then he himself, the 16-year-old, in a separate drone strike, while he was having dinner with a butch of other teenagers, was killed in a u.s. drone strike. this is just an amazing example of the u.s. killing an american citizen, killing a child, and doing it without any kind of attempt to explain to the family or to us why it was done. was it a may have stake? what is was on purpose? what did he ever do? was he ever charged with anything? no. was he ever tried to -- did they try to capture him? no. was he ever given a trial? no. it is one of the most blatant examples of the illegal use of drone warfare. >> host: may 1st, 20, here is
2:01 am
the president at the white house correspondents dinner. >> the jonas brothers are here. they're out there somewhere. sasha and malia are huge fans. but, boys, don't get any ideas. i have two words for you. predator drones. [laughter] >> you will never see it coming. >> host: your reaction to that joke. >> guest: it's not funny at all. certainly not funny to the people that live under the fear of drones. one thing i learned doing the research, peter, it's not just the people who are killed, whether they're innocent civilians, militants, high-value targets. it's the entire population in the area that is being punished collectively. imagine, peter, if you were out in your home in -- wherever you
2:02 am
live and you were looking up at the sky, and there was a buzzing of drones. you knew that the drone had missiles on it that was going to kill somebody. you didn't know who, when, where, why. and what i found is that in these areas where the drones are flying overhead, parents are afraid to send their children to school. people are afraid to go out to the market. they're afraid to go to any community events, whether it's even weddings or funerals, because drones have been known to target weddings and funerals. so, it's a terrifying thing to live under drones, and i don't think it's anything that the president should be joking about. >> host: january 30, 2015, codepink is pretty well known. capitol hill. for interrupting hearings. let's watch this video.
2:03 am
>> in the name of -- [shouting] >> we don't want to hear from you anymore. >> in the name of the people of chile in the name of the people of vietnam. in the name of the people of east timor. in the name of the people -- >> been a member of this committee for many years, and i have never seen anything as disgraceful and outrageous and despicable as the last demonstration that just took place about -- you know, you have to shut up or i'm going to have you arrested. if we can't get the capitol hill police in here immediately. get out of here, you low life scum. [applause]
2:04 am
>> so, henry, i hope you will -- dr. kissinger, i hope on behalf of all of the members on the committee, both sides of the aisle, in fact from all of my colleagues i'd like to apologize for allowing such disgraceful behavior towards a man who has served his country with the greatest distinction. i apologize profusely. >> host: low life scum. >> guest: yes, this is coming from john mccain, somebody who pushed to get abuse the war in iraq. you know, peter, whether it's henry kissinger or john mccain or george bush or donald rum felled and i could name many, many. unfortunately people in this country rarely are held accountable for their acts. i have lived in lattin america
2:05 am
-- latin america. i have seen the kind of responses to henry kissinger, responsible for the coup in chile that led to so much death and destruction in that country. i've been to east timor, where henry kissinger gave a green light for the dictatorship to invade that island, and again, wrecked so much death and destruction there. i grew up during the time of vietnam, so i remember henry kissinger and all the lies that we were told. so, henry kissinger to me is a war criminal and should be treated as such. john mccain has -- is somebody who is responsible partially for getting abuse a horrendous wore in iraq that led to the deaths of thousands of u.s. soldiers in vain, and to, by some accounts, over a million iraqis, shy also say it paved the way for isil today. so why aren't people held
2:06 am
responsible? perhaps because this is the super power, this is the country that has been all powerful and the powerful countries are usually not held accountable. look at the international criminal court. it's not the powerful that go there to be held accountable for war crimes. it's the vanquished. so, i think it's important that there be voices out there that say that we remember, and that we do not hold some of these people in high regards as statesmen who we should listen to tell us how to run our foreign policy. these are people that have taken us down a path of militarism that has made such mayhem around the world that we should look for other voices, the voices who said let's look for nonviolent solutions. let's have a foreign policy based on diplomacy, on mutual
2:07 am
respect, and that is not the policy, unfortunately, of people like henry kissinger. >> host: from our facebook page, this question from steven: i would understand if you chose not to answer, he writes. how do you and other activists in our yours gain admittance to these press conferences and hearings? i would think they would know you by now, but maybe it's just open to the public. >> guest: well, it's a very good question and we're asked that a lot. when i went to my first hearing on capitol hill, i was living in san francisco at the time, and it was when i read in the paper that donald runsfeld was going to testify about going to war in iraq, and i was so opposed to the war in iraq, i asked another friend from texas if she would fly to washington, dc and join me and try to get into this hearing. she said, well, if somebody can help me pay for my ticket, i'll go ahead and do it.
2:08 am
we found ourselves in line. we didn't know the public other could go to these hearing. be dressed up in pant suits like we were journalists, got little steno pads pads and tucked a "washington post" under our warms and put our banners down our pants because we thought we had to pretend we were journalists. lo some bee hold, anybody is allowed in there if you got up early enough and got on line. so it was a revelation to me that these public hearings mean the public is invited, and so we go to public hearings. we tend to be the first ones on line, we get envery early. there have been times, like during the iraq war, when there was so many people trying to get into these hearings, we actually slept outside the billing to be the first ones to get in, and technically, we have to be allowed inside. now, sometimes when we gotten arrested we might have a stay away order by the court that says we can't go to those buildings for x amount of time,
2:09 am
and sometimes the people who run the hearings try to stack the hearing. they bring in all their interns, all their staff, take up all the seats so there's no seating for the public. but in general, public hearings and -- i would a to you viewer, more of the public should attend these hearings. if you're coming to washington, dc on vacation, look up online or, look up the hearings happening. it's fascinating to go to these hearings. it's important to go to these hearings. it's important for people who don't live inside the beltway to go to these hearings. and feel how government works,, in action, and actually it's not pretty often times, because what you see is very narrow viewpoints, both by the democrats and republicans, who are asking the questions, and by the witnesses, who tend to be people who think alike. and so i found it quite
2:10 am
remarkable to go to the hearings and feel very frustrated that the questions that i as a citizen had were not being asked. for example, the very first hearing with donald rumsfeld he was being asked softball questions by the congress people about why he was advocating we good to war. and so i had originally thought i would just hold up a banner budget i felt like i had to stand up and say, i have some questions as the public. how many lives are going to be lost in this? how many civilians are going to die in this? how many companies are going to make a lot of of money from this? what is the exit strategy in this plan? have you exhausted all nonviolent solutions? why are the u.n. inspectors -- i had just been to iraq -- saying there nor weapons of mass destruction, and so i was asking
2:11 am
all these questions. and holding up a banner, and i realized that i feel an obligation as a u.s. citizen to expand the conversation. i think, for example, that public hearings should have a time, maybe it's ten minutes 5 minutes, at the end of the hearing, where the public should get a chance to say something. i think before the gavel goes down, the public should be able to express their views in these hearings. and unfortunately, because of codepink being out there and holding up signs and doing this nonviolent protests, the police have been told to be harder on us. that even before a hearing starts, before the gavel goes down, if we're there holding a sign, we can be arrested for that. and i should add, peter, that the capitol police are not very happy about that. they, to their credit, believe in free expression, and they
2:12 am
think before hearings starts and after the hearing ends we should have a chance to express ourselves. unfortunately, there are people who run these committees, like john mccain, who oppose any expression coming from the public. >> host: medea benjamin, what happens to you after your escorted out of the hearing. >> guest: most of the time we are arrested. if it's somebody -- >> host: taken to capitol hill headquarters. >> guest: it depends how many times you have been arrested. if it's your first rarity you get a fine. if it's your second arrest you get a fine. your third arrest or higher, then you can't just pay your way out of it. then you have to go to court. you're assigned a date to come back. then you are either taken to trial or you might be given some kind of plea bargain, which might include a stayaway that you can't go back to the congressional offices for a certain amount of time.
2:13 am
you might have to do a certain number of hours of community service. you might have certain financial amounts of money you have to pay. sometimes people refuse to pay the fines and say this is a moral position we have, and so might spend some time in jail. >> host: how many times have you been arrested and automatic of those penalties have you encountered. >> guest: i have been arrested dozens of times over the course of the work that i do. many of those arrests have been before 9/11 and i was involved more around economic work, trying to fight things like sweat shops or corporate abuses, but i've been arrested dozens of times. i've spent time in jail. i've had a lot of fines. i've done many shares of community service. and unfortunately i would say that sometimes this comes with the territory. it's not like we're trying to get arrested.
2:14 am
there are times when people do want to get arrested. for example, there have been a number of times where we have done protests at the white house, where people will stand and link arm to arm and not move from the white house, and we know that if you don't keep moving at the white house, and you're over 25 people, that's arrestable and we have had hundreds of people getting arrested for just standing there in front of the white house. those are planned things. those are times when people are voluntarily getting arrested, and i appreciate and have participated and organized in a number of those kind of arrests. but when we're speaking out in the hearings, especially before or after the hearing is actually started, we don't plan to get arrested. we don't want to get arrested, and we don't think we should be arrested. >> host: do the capitol hill police know you when you come in? do they plan for that? >> guest: as soon as we walk in the building there's actually a big smile on their faces because they have come to like us a lot.
2:15 am
we have a friendship with the capitol police. they give us big hugs when we come inside. sometimes we're standing on line to get in a hearing and one of the police will come in and give us a high five or a hug. they know us and they like us because they know we are nonviolent, absolutely nonviolent. they know we wouldn't touch anyone. we wouldn't hurt anybody. and they know that we're passionate about these issues, and they appreciate that. just as i appreciate people who might be on the totally opposite side of an issue that eye. on but they are passionate about the issues. we have something in common. we believe in getting involved in government activities, whether it's domestic issues or international issues. the capitol police were trying to have a party now for one of the lieutenants who recently retired because we enjoyed over the years having conversations with him about these issues. they often times don't agree with us on a lot of the things
2:16 am
but, again, they appreciate our passion, our involvement, and over the years i think have come to understand that we feel this responsibilityies a citizen is to steer our government on a better path. many of the capitol police have been in the military or their sons or daughters are in the military. they at this point don't want to see them sent off abroad on what they now consider a fool's mission. so, really, over the years they have come to recognize that we have been right on these issues. we shouldn't have invaded iraq. we shouldn't have always looked at these problems overseas as one that military can solve. and so i think not only do they appreciate us as individuals, i think they have moved close examiner closer to our positions. >> host: may 23, 2013. let's watch.
2:17 am
>> we went on to -- [shouting] >> we went on -- [shouting] >> can you tell the muslim people their lives are as precious as our lives? can you take the drones out of the hands of the cia? can you stop the signature strikes that are killing people on the basis of suspicious activity? >> we're addressing that, ma'am. >> apologize to the thousand of muslims you have killed? will you -- innocent victims? that will make us safer here at home. i love our country. i love the world. those are making our -- [shouting] -- guantanamo. making us look like -- abide by the rule of law. >> the voice of that woman is worth paying attention to. [applause]
2:18 am
>> obviously, i do not agree with much of what she said. and obviously she wasn't listening to me. in much of what i said. >> guest: i love my country. i love the rule of law. i think that is important for your viewers to understand. i don't do these things because i want to. my heart was pounding with almost coming out of my chest, peter and, there was a voice in me saying, don't do this, he's the president of the united states, and there was another voice saying, you just got back from yemen, you met with people whose mothers were children, children were killed, who were absolutely independent people, and your government is lying spouse saying we don't kill innocent people. you met with people who are asking the u.s. government to explain why their loved ones were killed. to apologize for killing them. to compensate them for their
2:19 am
loss just as a gesture to show they are sorry. and so these two voices were wrestling in my head, and i chose the voice of the victims, and i feel that so important, peter, because president obama's drone warfare has been almost victimless in the eyes of the american people. when have you seen the mainstream media -- yes, the hellfire missiles basically incinerate the victims so it's hard to show their bodies, but can't we talk to their loved ones? can't we talk to their mothers, their fathers, their wives, their husbands? and so american people have not been able to get the kind of empathy that i have from going to these places and meeting these families, and so i feel my government has been lying to me about the number of innocent people killed. my government has been using
2:20 am
illegal practices of just dropping missiles on people willy-nilly because we think they might be bad people, without ever having to prove it. without ever having to account for the innocent people killed. and there was my chance to address the president and i addressed it. and i think that for the muslim world, it's important to see a nonmuslim, and i'm also jewish and that's very important to say -- to say that their lives are as precious as our lives. my children and i have two and a granddaughter who i just adore -- are so precious to me that i don't want other people's children or grandchildren killed. and so i have to stand up and say to my government, stop lying. stop using extra judicial killing. capture people. give them a -- accuse them of something, give them a trial,
2:21 am
and treat every life as if it were your own child's life. >> host: you're watching booktv on c-span2. this is our "in depth" program. opposite a month we invite an author on to talk about his or her body of work. this month it's author and activist, me deah -- medea ben gentleman mine, a cofound ordinaries consecutive pink and also an author in 1989, bridging the globe gap. a handbook to linking citizens of the first and third worlds. don't be afraid, gringo, came out in 1989 as well. no free lunch, food and revolution in cuba today. another 1989 book. the peace corps and more, 1991. an afro brazillian woman's story of politics and love, 1997. cuba, talking about a revolution, also in 1997. the greening of the revolution. she is the coeditor of that
2:22 am
book, 2002. how to stop the next war now, coeditor, 2005, and finely, drone warfare, killing by remote control, came out in 2013. medea benjamin, you wrote a lot andletin america. whatit ills about the u.s. and latin american relationship. >> guest: it's about the u.s. trying to tell latin america how to run its own internal affairs. it's this old monroe doctrine, the idea it's our backyard, and we can make and break governments at our will. and it's funny because i feel that my politics came from my first experiences of traveling to latin america. i was a pretty naive young woman, going to guatemala, wanting to learn about the beautiful indigenous culture, and what i learned about was my
2:23 am
own history. i learned about the dulles brows and they were imposing u.s. policy on guatemala. i learned about the overthrow of the democratically elected government, and united fruit taking away lands from indigenous people and turning them into people who couldn't feed themselves anymore. i learn about chile and the overthrow of the democratically elected sal -- salvador acken day. and i ward told to learn about my own country, my own history, and work to change your government's policies so you allow to us elect the governments we want, and don't interfere in our internal affairs, and that became a lesson to me. and one that has stuck with my
2:24 am
my entire life, which is that we should not try to dictate how other countries and other peoples behave, and i think it's a lesson that more of our leaders have to learn because they try to socially engineer other countries, and it, one, is not fair, and, two, doesn't work. >> host: we're going to put the numbers on the screen. if you want to talk. east and central time zone 202-748-8200. 202-7 48-8201 in mountain and pacific time zone. and if you can't get through on the phone lines, you detective through via social media. twitter,@booktv is our twitter handle. you can send an e-mail to booktv@c-span organize organize, and finally make a comment on our facebook page. when did you become medea?
2:25 am
>> guest: i was born susan ben gentleman minimum. i was born in a suburban house hold in long island, new york, and i was growing up in the '60s, a time of great turmoil. i look back at my youth and i realize that i was tremendously affected by several things. one was the war in vietnam, and i started a peace group in my high school. another was race issues that i had lived in a white suburb where black families started moving in, and it brought out some really ugly racism among my neighbors, and i sided with the black families, and the other was this issue of materialism, because i'm thinking now of martin luther king talking about the triple evils of racism, militarism, and materialism, and i noticed in my own neighborhood and family this always striving to get more material goods.
2:26 am
to keep up with the joneses, and is rejected those three things as a young person. when i went off to college, it was in the middle of the vietnam war, and i decided that i would not stay in school because i wanted to be out learning about the real world and not stuck in some ivory tower, but in my little time in the ivory tower, my first semester at tufts university, i started reading the greek plays, and it was one of the courses i was taking, and i decided as i was going to change my identity and leave school i should also change my name because i never liked susan. always many susys in my classes, and i was little susie, and so every month i would choose a different name from the greek plays and tell my friend they had to call me a different name.
2:27 am
when it came to medea, i thought it was pretty name. i had read the play about medea being this powerful woman with magical powers that use them in a very bad way and killing her own children. then i read another analysis saying she didn't do that. actually it was blamed on her because she was a powerful woman with magical powers. anyway i said i like the name medea, and i like the idea of a strong woman, and using her strength for positive things. and so i stuck with the name medea. >> host: were your parents activists? >> guest: they were not activists at all. my parents, if anything, were not interested in politics. they were very typical keep up with the joneses kind of family, and it's hard for me to say whether they -- democrat or republican. i think they voted republican
2:28 am
most of the time and were quite conservative in their values. i also say they were racist in the way they looked at the world and were afraid of the black families coming into our community, afraid of property values, so i butted heads with them on quite a number of issues. but certainly i didn't get my politics from my parents. >> host: has cuba been a positive influence as far as its politics and its system? >> guest: i would say i have a love-hate relationship with cuba. i was -- peter, i got into all of this, i mentioned, from the antiwar but also from wanting to live in a world where all children had food on their plates and roof over their head. as a humanist, really. and so i went to school and studied nutrition. i went out in the world, working as a new tryingsist with mall nourished kids around the world, and i was so distraught, whether it was latin america or africa
2:29 am
or asia, seeing so hasn't myungry children when i knew that with ten cents, a mixture of -- they could be rehydrated instead they were diagnose from diarrhea. i said this world is crazy that doesn't do anything to stop these poor children from dying. and then i met cubans who were working in africa, and they had left their families, they weren't getting paid. they volunteered as doctors, as nurses, as teachers, to live in the poorest parts of africa, and treat poor people. and they also were just fun people to hang out with because they were really dedicated to trying to help people who were impoverished. they really formed relationship with the local people. and also they loved to dance and they loved to sing and they loved to party and they loved to have a good time. and when i started hearing cuban music and dancing, cuban salsa,
2:30 am
thought this is just wonderful. and -- but more important to me was they said that in cuba there were no malnourished kids. the cuban government was so dedicated to children that i should go and see for myself. which i did. and i went to cuba and i ended up getting married in cuba, having my child in cuba, and it's true. the cuban government is dedicated to the children. the children are so well taken care of in cuba. but i'm an outspoken person. i've been since the time i was a child and i found that i really cared about free speech and i really cared about freedom of assembly, and i started butting heads with the powers that be in my work place, and whether it was coming up against a government sponsored union that i would fight with to try to get more changes in the workplace, or whether it was speaking out against government policies, i
2:31 am
ended up getting in trouble in cuba, and in fact, so much trouble that i was given a military escort to the plane and i was deported with my husband and child. the years went by. i was not even allowed back into cuba, and after many years, i was asked to write a piece about cuba, and the magazine that asked me to do it actually negotiated to get me the right to go back into cuba because the didn't on the board of the magazine was a lawyer, who to this day is a lawyer who works for the cuban government. and he got me back inside. i have been going back and forth to cuba. i love the fact that health care in cuba is free and accessible to all. i love the fact that education is free and accessible to i'm love the fact they care about the children. but i do care about and want to
2:32 am
live in a society where people are able to express themselves freely. >> host: in your book, cuba, talking bat revolution, you write about juan antonio blanco. who is that? >> guest: he is an intellectual that i met in cuba that was one of those really interesting people who was very revolutionary, had butted heads with fidel castro and the government because he took independent stands on a lot of things. for example, one over noter things the cuban government did was nationalize the entire economy. everything from the little restaurants, from the selling of peanuts on the corner, everything became a government activity, which was disastrous, and people spoke out against that. so i did an interview with him
2:33 am
that i thought was fascinating and we turned it into a book. it's a book called "talking about revolution." and it's from the point of view of a revolutionary who is a -- has a critical eye on his own government, but has the values of the revolution. >> host: of all your books-what's your favorite? >> guest: i would say my favorite is "don't be afraid gringo." it's about a woman who i met when i traveled to central america during the '80s. the time of the u.s. involvement in these terrible wars in central america where the u.s. was trying to overthrow the sandinistas, the u.s. was fighting in el salvador, used in bloody wars in central america, and the country that wasn't getting enough coverage back in the u.s. was honduras. so i decided to go to honduras
2:34 am
and speak to people about the encroaching military involvement. in fact the u.s. was now putting up bases inside honduras to use as a launching pad for the wars in the rest of central america, and i was interviewing lots of different people from different walks of life, and i came across this one woman, and i did an interview with him, and i fell in love with this woman, and i thought, i'm going to go back and do more interviews with her, and we did more interviews and more, and then turned it into a book, and i love the book because we ended up doing it from her point of view. and telling the story of a woman who was a poor peasant woman, who grew up with her six children, being malnourished, struggling to speed them, trying to get a little patch of land to grow food, then realizing she wanted to organize to help her
2:35 am
neighbors get access to land. i went out with her on what are called these land recoveries where they go out in the middle of the night, take over a piece of lan that a wealthy landowner had left lying fallow, and the land own we're wake up to find 300 families now on that land, starting to dig and plant seeds, and i was just amazed at their organizationing capacity, at their standing up to powerful landlords who had guns and militias, al via had been captured and tortured, imprisoned in the u.s. base, and yet with off ol' -- all of that she was fun. we laughed incessantly. we became like sisters. we had such good a time together. and the book was a wonderful introduction to a lot of people about the problems in central america, and why the u.s. military involvement was not a good thing. and then we brought her to the
2:36 am
united states year after year to talk to audiences, and my favorite was once -- i don't know how we managed to do it. we had a friend on the idea. we took her to speak to the graduating class in the u.s. defense college, the war college in california, and these graduates were going to be going to central america, and she was speaking before them, and this woman just charmed the hell out of them in the beginning. she got up and said, left me tell you what the life of a peasant is like. we get up at 4:00 in the morning, start making the tortillas, we send our husbands into the field and get our children off to school and we go in field and come home and clean and work and we're exhaustled by nighttimes and husbands come back and they want us to work again in bed. and everybody in the audience starts laughing and she is charming them. and i remember at one point she looks out in the audience, and
2:37 am
jumps off the stage, and -- she doesn't speak english, and it turns out that one of the soldiers had fallen asleep. she goss,. [clapping] clap of 50 pushups right here, right now. so they were in his stair ricks, so the won them over and the talked about the soldiers coming in her community and arresting the peasants and torturing them, and in the end, they didn't want to go to central america anymore. they wanted to hug and kiss her and get their pictures taken with her. the become became very subversive. read by people in the military. people in the peace corps. it was the number one underground book that beam going -- people going to central america in the peace corps were reading and i think it had a big effect in turning people's mind around 0. >> host: because of the kind of work you do do you get regular league advise? >> guest: well, i certainly get
2:38 am
legal advice and have a lot of lawyers who are friends, but i don't often listen to the legal advice. if i did, i would never have done that first interruption of donald rums phil because the lawyer said could i get a year in jail, thousands of dollar's fines, and we did it anyway. i have talked to lots of lawyers and i always weigh their opinion carefully, but usually don't take the advice. >> host: medea benjamin, you mixed you respect people on the other side who are passionate about the issue. let's look at video from july 23rd of this year. >> so one of the things you said is if iran is trying to get nuclear weapons -- the nice thing is i think in debates, proof matters and one entity, one person who -- about with whom there is no ambiguity in
2:39 am
term owes whether iran wants weapons the ayatollah which men any. and president rouhani. both who say they're developing nuclear weapons there's no doubt -- >> absolutely false. absolutely false. [shouting] >> i don't think that dirks. >> ma'am, ma'am, i do not -- i did not interrupt you. i did not interrupt you so i would ask you to show me the same courtesy. if you look at, number one, would note, you did not respond to the irrefutable point that this deal will send over $100 billion to iran and those billions of dollars will be used to murder americans by jihaddists. you didn't responsibility to that. >> host: what was that about? >> guest: we went to a gathering. we heard and just ran over there that ted cruz was going to be speaking to a group of concerned
2:40 am
women, was called against the iran nuclear deal, and we have been great enthusiasts of this iran nuclear deal because it keeps us out of another war. and ran over there and ted cruz was talking, and so i got up front, and was able to have a dialogue with ted cruz for about 25 minutes. it wasn't a fair debate, i would say, because he had all his people and he had control of the mics. but it was a good example of i think very smart on his part of inviting us to come up and to talk about these issues. but now that you brought up this clip here, do want to say that while i've been a great critic of president president obama foe strikes and not closing down guantanamo, especially len he first came in and had control of the house and senate, and many other issues, i am very
2:41 am
enthusiastic about the iran nuclear deal. i'm very enthusiastic about the normalization of relations with cuba. i'm very enthusiastic that finally he started to use diplomacy, and i think it's a very dangerous time when the congress is being lobbied now by big money groups like aipac, to convince congress to vote against this deal. this is a deal that is in the best interests of the united states, of iran. i would also say in the best interests of israel and the world, because we need to be working cooperatively with iran. not only to make sure it does not have nuclear weapons, which it says it does not want. ted cruz lied when he said that the ayatollah and rouhani said they want nuclear weapons. but also because he need to work with iran and saudi arabia and all the countries in the region
2:42 am
to deal with the issues of isil to deal with the issues of extremism, if we're going to find diplomatic solutions to the tremendous problems in the middle east, it has to be by talking to all the parties there. >> host: one more piece of video before we go to phone calls. so if you're on the line, hang on for just one more second. the same day, july 23, 2015. here's codepink. [applause] [applause] [applause] [applause]
2:43 am
>> come to order. >> host: you kicked out of a hearing for applauding? >> guest: we applauded before the gavel went down. i had been arrested protesting john kerry and so have my colleagues with codepink but this is a time where we are so proud of him. we think that he and the iranians and the other countries that are involved in this have done a tremendous job to come up with this deal, and we wanted to show our appreciation. we're even going to his house to bring flowers there. we think it's important when government people do something good that we show appreciation. >> host: medea benjamin is our guest. its your town to talk to her. we begin with a phone call from rome in philadelphia. you're on booktv. >> caller: thank you very much. i appreciate booktv and c-span choosing medea benjamin and i
2:44 am
want to say i'm learning so much, and meds deah, has been a huge inspiration to me. she is one of the persons highly responsible for getting me interested because she spoke so much truth in the protests and finding out why she protested. she is a huge inspiration to me. i have two basic questions, but again, thank you, c-span, for seeing the importance and the tradition of kwame influencing bryan lamb to start c-span, i think think her comments have necessary debate that makes america as beautiful as it is. my question is could medea benjamin talk about the influence of eduardo galliano who passed in april of this year and also she said that cuba normalizing the relationship with the united states, she sees as a positive thing, but i have a concern that what happened to the ussr in 1989 will happen to
2:45 am
cuba with the socialist character with cuba will die. could you speak to that and galliano's influence on her maybe? >> guest: eduardo galliano, for those of your viewers who don't know him, run to the library and get the book. "own veins of lat -- open veins of latin america" is one example of a writer who is a beautiful literary writer but gets into the soul of latin america and also the way the u.s. has historically tried to subvert the wildfires latin american people. so, eduardo galliano has had a tremendous influence on me as i was growing up and reading his books. roane talked about the character of the socialist revolution in cuba. i mention my love-hate relationship with cuba. i think one of the exciting things about cuba is that it's
2:46 am
different and we need societies that try different things because goodness knows we have so many problems in our capitalist society of entire sectors of our population who don't benefit from this economy. the tremendous inequalities, the climate crisis, and trying different ways of living in society is a good thing. in the case of being concerned about what it means to normalize relations, i think it's an example of trusting the cubans to decide what they want to let in from the u.s. and what they don't. for example, i think that cubans have for economic reasons decided that tourism is going to be a big sector of their economy and would like to see a lot more american tourists being able to travel there. well, obama has opened up embassies, he still -- the u.s. has still not lifted the travel
2:47 am
ban. so that you can only go to cuba if you fit within 12 categories that include educational travel, religious travel, humanitarian, but if you want to go on the beach, like any canada yap, and go lie on a beautiful beach in -- outside havana, that is illegal. so cubans would like to see that travel ban lift. think the american people should protest that our government is telling us where we can and can't go. and that is one thing that should be lifted. in terms of lifting the trade restrictions that still exist, think it would benefit the cubans tremendously to be able to buy some of the foods they don't produce and are now buying from countries thousands of miles away, from new zealand they're getting chickens, rice from vietnam. and to be able to get it from 90 miles away from the united states. so, there are things that would definitely be mute -- mutually
2:48 am
beneficial. one of the exciting things cuba is experting with is cooperatives. the government realizes the state run, chopped down economy, has not worked and that they want to divest the state of a lot of these different businesses, and in stead of concerning them into private businesses, they're trying to turn them into worker co-ops, and i think it's very exciting. we visit a lot of them when we go to cuba, and litten offers or viewers who are interested, check out our web site, code for upcoming trips to cuba. i think at comment with a strong worker co-op sector could be very exciting and could be a model in cuba and for other countries, including our own. >> host: stewart is calling in from new york city, hi, stewart. >> caller: hey, petitioner. thank you very much and thank you to your guest i just want to echo what a terrific program you
2:49 am
have, and peter, you're facility at asking questions and getting information conveyed is extraordinary. i have two questions. for your guest. the first, it's been almost 14 years since 9/11. what do you attribute the lack of organized terrorism in this country to over the interim? and then the second question, hypothetical -- sorry -- if, say, a weapon of mass destruction were used in the united states, let's assume we weren't able to stop it, what changes in the rules of law might we want to consider? thank you. >> guest: i'm not sure i understand the first question. did you, pete center. >> host: do you want to rephrase that first question? >> caller: yes. >> host: what are you going for with the first question? >> caller: i look, for example, 14 years oak almost, a couple thousand people were killed by islamic terrorists. that kind of organized effort has not occurred in the
2:50 am
intervening period, and i'm curious what your guest attributes that lack of success on the part of the terrorists to, and i hope my second question was straightforward but i can respond to that as well. >> host: what is your answer to the first question, stewart? >> caller: i think there's a balance between the amount of information we gather and the observation we have on people's behavior. i think we have to balance that up against rights of privacy, and the potential for government intrusiveness, by think it's a practical constraint that requires judgment, awareness, and alertness, and i welcome the discussion if don't presume to have definitive answers. >> host: thank you, sir. >> guest: yes, thank you for that. i understand now. i agree with you've that it's a balance. i think we're far from having found that balance. i think the terrible intrusion on our privacy in terms of the mass surveillance has been uncomfort thanks to edward snowden, but our government lied
2:51 am
to us telling us they weren't doing that. and i don't think mass surveillance is a way to protect us. i think that, yes, that we need to be defended at home, and the government should be checking on people that they think would have a reason to harm us, but that's one of the reasons i think that our military should be here at home defending us instead of going in and invading other countries overseas. but i don't think that we have ever allowed ourself as a nation to look at ways that we can prevent people from wanting to harm us. for example, one of the reasons that osama bin laden said he hated the united states was that we had bases in the saudi lands in the holy lands and mecca. we should be closing down those bases. and not just bases there, there's many other countries
2:52 am
that don't want our military bases that have been fighting to get those military bases out of their countries. and we should close down those bases. there are many people who hate the united states because we have been supporting dictators in their countries. i have traveled to many of these places, like egypt, where the u.s. is supporting a very repressive regime in fact as we are doing this program, john kerry, who i applauded very recently, is now sitting down with general sissy who has made life miserable for the egyptian people and according to human rights watch and amnesty international the human rights situation is worse than during the terrible days of hosni mubarak and yet john kerris there making nice and the u.s. has released over a billion dollars in military aid to that
2:53 am
country. the i.s. has also been one-sided in its support for israel, giving israel over $3 billion a year in our tax dollars to the israeli military that has been used for repressing the palestinian people. so a number of u.s. policies that make is disliked around the world...
2:54 am
we do applaud what we do like the use of diplomacy, but we want to move towards a broader look at what kind of world we want to live in and we've been talking about and researching and i would like to do more writing about the con that to the peace economy. what would a peace economy look like to move us away from a country so entrenched in the military industrial complex that general eisenhower warned us about in the 1950s and move back into a peace economy. what would it look like to have an economy based on locally produced goods, more participatory budgets where people are really involved in shaping how we spend our money, what would it look like to have the kind of diplomacy we want to see on the international level be taught in our schools against
2:55 am
things laid olene be a core part of what children learn from the time they enter into public schools. all these different ways we could move ourselves as individuals away from the war economy and move ourselves as a nation into an economy that protects the environment to include the issues of getting off the fossil fuel treadmill and an economy based on green sustainable and renewable sources of energy. all of the pieces coming together to inspire people both individually trying to think of what they do with their lives as well as what kind of policies we want to see nationally and globally. moving into the big picture of what does the peace economy look like. >> host: when did you start
2:56 am
writing? >> guest: i started raining when i was hired by an organization called food first, also institute or food and development policy. when i left cuba i was one of the few american living there and as nutritionist by training and the institute hired me to co-author a book on the good and bad things cuba had done to address the food issue and i realized i really like to and i enjoyed telling stories and relaying the conversations that i would have with people or hear people having amongst themselves that i liked being a vehicle for translating ideas i heard especially when i lived overseas. a lot of my books they're taking those voices or lessons, a book i wrote on brazil about the
2:57 am
first black poor women to become a senator in brazil. my experiences in cuba become incorporated in the book are talking about revolution. i enjoyed the conversation i find fascinating. conversations i would've never had in the united states. in the united states i am considered radical, sometimes fringe. but overseas i'm kind of a centrist. centrists may be liberal because the center of gravity and other places is so different. i like invading voices to americans who usually don't get a chance to hear that appear in >> host: next call for medea benjamin comes from daniel in west palm beach. >> caller: how you doing. number one, thank you for taking my call. i'm so glad i hooked up with "in
2:58 am
depth" today. i was never familiar with ms. benjamin and i always thought they were a bunch of crazies. how wrong was i. maybe i was the one that was crazy. i'm like 999% in her mind. when she speaks it's almost the things i want to say. at another question. just one point as far as work goes. wars are about one thing and one thing only and that is monday. unfortunately the people who benefit are moore's never sacrificed anything am the only time they hurt is when the war and peered my heart goes out to the men and women and the innocent. anyway, god bless you guys and ms. benjamin, keep up the good
2:59 am
work. thank you. >> danielle, my heart goes out to you because what you said resonates with me as bessie butler once said war is a racket and there are people who make a lot of money for more. zero it makes a lot of money, northrop grumman makes a lot of money for more, all the contractor is at the pentagon make a lot of money for more. lobbyists make a lot of money for more. it is in their interest to keep the wars going and if the people who volunteer to protect our country lucas hentoff on wars we shouldn't be in who are the big ones of this. we the taxpayers are forced to spend trillions of dollars said of investing it in high-speed
3:00 am
rail systems and good transportation and good infrastructure in this country and all the things we need to rebuild our country here at home. so we have been taken for a ride by those who benefit from more and we the people have to rise up and speak out about that. i was talking earlier about iran who is lining up to squash the deal. people who benefit from more and also billionaires who have a lot of money to invest in our fair try to put fear into people that iran is about to attack us. this kind of fear mongering is bad for us. is bad for policymakers and yet we see a handful of billionaires is trying to persuade the american people that we should go down the path to another war
3:01 am
in iran, a country of 80 million people. i agree very much with you again now. so glad you called in and as the next military person i think it is important we get together and force our government should not listen to those who profit from more to listen to the majority of americans who do not and if it. >> host: we don't want to make this too much of a love in so lots of points of view. some of the comments coming in. can does? job it still says waste of time. and he says she is a leftist nut and one more comment says medea benjamin, please do not forget your calling my radio program is on august 3rd here in florida. she wanted to remind you about that. raymond in kalamazoo, michigan.
3:02 am
>> caller: hi, how are you? god bless you both. peter, you are my hero, too. and the young lady is my new found hero and i just want to say thank you, god bless you for your show. i wanted to know how can one become a member of your organization, ms. benjamin and an active member peer where activists in new, michigan. we have protested against police brutality, racial profiling, delights of the public safety are so sneaky and so fake and they put up because of all the
3:03 am
goings-on in baltimore and more recently in cincinnati with a young man being shot in the face in the car and so on. they hold these neighborhood police meetings to show they are on the side of the community which they are not. we protested in washington d.c. against the invasion of iran, rather iraq where bush gave a 48 hour to saddam hussein that he better get up out of dodge. i'm an african-american who was told at the history of kalamazoo , kalamazoo. i was told we would only one
3:04 am
stand up against police brutality in and racial profiling and that sort of thing here in kalamazoo. >> host: raymond, a lot on the table. let's hear from our guests, medea benjamin. tesco first of all, i'm glad you asked her to join because some people think it's only women. we welcome and encourage men to join us and you can go online and sign up and you are a member. we send out weekly alerts giving people ideas of things they can do. i'm glad you brought up the issue of police brutality because that is an issue we care about very much. repost it, for example, mothers who lost their children to police violence to have meaning that the justice department congress and the white house. i remember sitting around with dan and asking them have any of
3:05 am
the police officers who shot their children, have they been in the military and one by one the women raised their hand and said the police man was in iraq, afghanistan and many police came back from overseas tours of duty with ptf d., trigger-happy and that accounts for a lot of the killings happening by the police and the other saying is the military contractors. we just talked about war being a racket. the defense department is giving away hundreds of millions of dollars worth of military grade equipment to police departments. these are things no police department should have. tanks we see in our streets, grenade launchers, silent tears, assault weapons and we have to
3:06 am
fight back. we don't want police to have military equipment and we don't want police who are trigger-happy. we worked together on the issue of showing the militarization oversees and on our street unfortunately connected and when we talk about moving towards a peace economy, a peaceful way of the world would have to look towards how we change the way police are treating citizens in their own communities. >> host: book you contributed to his highlight of empire responses to occupation. what were your travels in iraq late? >> we went to go to iraq. we have always felt it's important to go to the places where government is involved
3:07 am
semiconductor from first-hand experiences. our first trip was in february 2003 at the time without the u.s. is going to have a. imagine getting together a group of women in saying we may be there when the bombing started but we are so committed to going that we are going to go. what we found is our stereotypes going away. i write in the introduction in the book i did with my cofounder about an experience on the first try at when we flew to jordan, rented a car, drove across the desert extremely nervous so what happened when i got to chat point to enter iraq. here we were under saddam hussein about to invade them and the customs guard takes our passport, look at the other one, stamps them, looks at mind and
3:08 am
says benjamin, is not jewish and i thought the iraqis hate the jewish. i just had these flashes through my mind and the guy disappeared and left their standing, thinking what's going to happen to me. he comes back huffing and puffing and says i ran home to get my note book. i've been studying hebrew and i wonder if you could correct my grammar. i was like my goodness, first of all i felt that time i didn't beat hebrew. he said my government might go to war with israel and i want to communicate with those i am told are my enemies. when we went to war he said they learned farsi and i don't consider any people my enemy. that is the person going into iraq under saddam hussein and
3:09 am
then we get to bag dad, the first woman i meet is a woman who speaks perfect english, never been out of iraq in her life, and her question to me was to wear the black women american pilot that are your favorite? i like alice walker, nikki giovanni and she goes on telling me this is a one-man and directed product of the iraqi university system. she said i studied u.s. literature at the university. you go to iraq and realize the women are very sophisticated. judges, lawyers, architects, business women. they are on way are fighting against saddam hussein. they don't want us to bring it to them. that's not how it works.
3:10 am
traveling to iraq was a tremendous eye-opener just as it has been a tremendous eye-opener to travel to yemen to meet with the terms of the drums strike and gaza where i'd been seven times meeting with hamas, people who i am told i'm crazy. i'm sure wish my government would meet with hamas because it's a lot better to talk than it is to fight. i have been constantly educated grow every time i'm able to go overseas to meet with people who think differently than i do. i learned from them and they learn from me. >> host: alice walker did the forward to stop the next war -- "stop the next war." who is jodie evans? >> guest: jodie evans is the cofounder of cure pink.
3:11 am
she is constantly all over the world. she came back from brazil, for example. they look at how we can build a global movement for peace and justice. we work for a mostly volunteer is not a typical ngo or have a lot of staff. jodi and i ourselves volunteer at the recommendation and many of the people who work with code pink are volunteers. many of us are retired or people who have our work on the side and do this as volunteers. that's one of the beautiful things that code pink and i feel blessed being able to work with jodie evans because she's an extraordinary and extraordinary visionary. i've had the pleasure of
3:12 am
traveling to alice walker. they been to gaza for international women's day and we went to see the results of the destruction and we went to honor the women. in fact, we called our friends and gaza said what can we bring? do you need medicine question are they said for international women's day, bring things for women that make them feel like women. bring them produce cars, nice silks and shampoos are so they got a basket for women and spent international women's day with united nations go into 15 different organizations and gaza distributing dutiful task at stopes inspires and beautiful
3:13 am
candies to women throughout the strip but it suffers so much. >> host: next call for medea benjamin comes from tom in washington d.c. >> caller: thank you for having me. thank you to booktv and c-span for having a great program. i would like to reiterate what your previous guest said just thank medea benjamin. i'm sitting here with tears in my eyes thinking about you women in the gaza strip giving up his gift baskets. i have a couple questions. one of my questions as you consider yourself an act list or writer? i read you online the publication another place is and i am a budding act do this to myself and i would like to ask you, why isn't there more of a peace movement in the united states? do you think the educational work in protest you done about
3:14 am
drones has had an impact in our country and around the world? you're just bringing up gaza and hamas and other organizations and what are called extremist groups or groups like this and muslim groups. i'm wondering how you would deal with a says -- a safe and hamas and other groups. i'll take your ribs are offline. i want to thank you. i'm proud to speak with you. >> host: if you would start with the activist author. what's the balance? >> guest: activist number one. i spend a lot of time writing. i write articles two times a week i have an article in many places like "huffington post" come in dreams truth out and is
3:15 am
a very nice group of work with called the other words that takes a column and send them out to smaller newspapers around the united states which is a great way to reach many different kinds of people. writing is important that this is my number one love because i want to change things. the caller asks has the activism had any impact. when we started doing the work, the government wasn't admitting it even had a drone program. it was sane at the covert program we just don't talk about it. we force the government to talk about it. we force them to admit they were civilian casualties. we managed to get calmed nation for the innocent drone of the thames. we have forced our government to stop in the way of his using a
3:16 am
double tops when they send in one round of missiles and then another round right-of-way which were coming in to help the people killed in the first round. stop them from doing the tree in a killing if they knew would kill a significant number of civilians in the process. there have been changes in the policy. we would like to see an end but we have at least modified behavior. the caller said why caller said why isn't there more of a peace movement? it's a very good question and there's some self-criticism and reflection that many people who got on the streets to talk about and stop the war in iraq when obama came and they said we now have a peace president. many of them are democrats too sad they will do a good job and
3:17 am
others were so good from fighting the bush administration. they wanted to believe obama would solve problems for us. it was the time of a tremendous economic crisis. people will boost their homes, students tremendous debt. so they had to focus on economic issues, keeping families together who didn't have time to protest wars. for whatever reason the piece moved and almost dissolved. it's a shadow of its former self. because of back, we allowed the obama administration to have the drone program to invade and overthrow the government of libya which created such a disaster now to do other military invasions that have not helped. the lesson is to people that it doesn't matter who was in the white house. what matters is having a movement that is independent of
3:18 am
both local parties that's double protest democrats and republicans and really is a movement tied to other issues, green economy, militarization at home, money and politics, corruption about that recognizes you have to tie these things together and we want to hold our government accountable no matter who's in office. i think -- >> host: you covered at this, the peace movement and i think his last common was about taking the gift basket to gaza. >> guest: i think how you would deal with these terrorist groups. hamas i could use as an example. i am secular feminist jewish. i certainly do not like what hamas stands for at all.
3:19 am
and yet any chance i get to talk to hamas or muslim brotherhood brotherhood people i do it. when obama came into office, we had a chance to talk to people in the set to them obama is coming to cairo. he's going to address the arab world to buy don't you send a message to him opening arms and saying let's talk. we took the letter from hamas from a man, othman yousef, spent the whole night writing a letter to take to cairo to deliver to obama. i have a copy of the letter ended quite extraordinary. it says they want you to come here and see for yourself are ground zero and with the israeli invasion did here. we want you to start discussions we are willing to talk to anybody, i.e. israel based on no
3:20 am
precondition and we want discussions based on international law and we couldn't even get the obama administration to respond at all to that. there's an example of reaching out and trying to promote discussions and our government refusing to do that. how would you do it today? i mentioned earlier we have to involve iran, saudi arabia, turkey, countries in the region. we have to get back to the peace table. let me ask one other thing because code pink worked with women around the world when the first talks happened in geneva around trying to find solution to the war in syria family were for peace and freedom when the oldest women's peace group bringing forward to try to get
3:21 am
an observer status and a few at the table for the peace talks. these were women involved in peaceful protests against assad and trying to find ways to do with the conflict through nonviolent means. we could not convince john kerry or anybody that women should have their seat at the table. the only people with a seat at the table were the guys with the guns. if you don't have peacemakers at the table, you will not have peace. so we've been pushing the u.s. and the world abide by the resolution at the united nations called 1325 that says women must be involved and are all rebels of peacemaking and would like to see our government treat that more seriously. >> host: from our twitter feed, vicky says the u.s. shouldn't interfere in other countries internal affairs?
3:22 am
what about human trafficking and genocide. >> guest: we should work through the united nations, international bodies. we should not take it on myself. we have a lot right here in the united states. caller talked about police brutality and the incredible proliferation of guns in people being killed every day. human trafficking inside the country we have to deal with. we should clean up a lot of the problems we have at home and work with international organizations hoping to find international organizations and work on this very, very difficult issues like human trafficking. >> host: john is calling in from oregon. you've oregon. you can hold in a while. thanks for your patience. you are in booktv with medea benjamin. >> caller: thank you so much. i know might hold of and listening. when i hang up i will continue listening. i wish to echo the opening
3:23 am
comment of the first caller and comments of the retired military caller and that leaves only that i am both humbled and honored to have this opportunity. i was watching c-span and when the second plane hit the tower, my first up is okay time for the women to start running the country because the men have done nothing but cause trouble. i'm not talking like hillary clinton or nancy pelosi or anything like that. elizabeth warren should stay where she sat. she could be more effective in her post. if hillary is the democratic nominee i will reluctantly vote for her because the alternative will be more death and destruction on a greater scale. if it is a standard administration, however, ms. benjamin, à la pipe resin that sanders to nominate u.s.
3:24 am
secretary of state for department of interior and so it's not an all-female cap. one quick comment for c-span and one for ms. benjamin. i would hope that c-span can do a series or bring the survivors in and do interviews with them and perhaps even bring johnson's biographer. i go through and bring out the entire truth surrounding the uss liberty and for ms. benjamin with the uss liberty and rachel corrie and all of the problems that israel has caused the
3:25 am
government of israel, not the people of israel, ms. benjamin, do you think you will ever be possible to hold the government of israel to account without being labeled an anti-semite? again, honored and humbled at the opportunity. thank you very much. >> guest: thank you so much for calling in. women rising up i am totally there with you. that is what we've been trying to do. i want to give you an example of something i was involved recently, which is a woman on a korean american women who had a dream about women rising up to do some thing about the unresolved con like in the korean peninsula and woke up and said i'm going to organize a group of women and we will walk across the demilitarized zone and that's precisely what we did. we organized 30 women including
3:26 am
nobel peace prize winners, women from the above in different countries and we got the permission of north korea, south korea, u.s. government, u.n. command to walk across the demilitarized zones. it is an example of women rising up and bringing attention to an unresolved conflict of the armistice agreement back in 1953 that still has not been turned into a peace treaty and needs to happen. i am anxious to see women rising up globally to demand the guys put down the gun. i agree with you it is not just about any women. i consider hillary clinton to be a hawk. we met with hillary clinton about iraq pleaded with her to not vote for the iraq war. she knew better.
3:27 am
she knew they were not weapons of mass destruction. she made a choice and a very bad choice. while secretary of state, what did she do to bring peace in the world? look at her record of what kerry has done around iran. she has done nothing. she did nothing to the peace process. in fact, she continued the u.s. policy of total allegiance to the israeli government. i wanted to move towards your other comment which was israel. as a jew i care very much about israel and the jewish people and i think the path of israel is on now is the most impossible for the jewish people and israeli people. i think as a jewish american i have a particular is its ability to qaeda make my governments
3:28 am
have an evenhanded policy that recognizes we need to promote human rights of all people as palestinians as well as the jewish population. i think our giving of $3 billion a year to the israeli military to then be used to attack the poor people in the gaza strip is a war crime. israel committed war crimes in the international looking into that. the u.s. state to buy furnishings and allowing israelis to continue to do that. i also think the continued wilderness settlement has been shown by the international community to be illegal. the recent right wing settlers who burned the homes of palestinian, killing a 14 -month-old baby is just
3:29 am
despicable and the u.s. has to stand up against the settlements as well. one thing that i see happening is the jewish community and the united states is changing and moving away from the israel lobby aipac that has a lot of money and a lot of clout losing the younger generation and we see now with the site around the nuke leer deal that the younger jewish population in the united states is for the deal and aipac is having to use massive amounts of money. in fact, they started an organization, but $20 million into it to try to sway the american public because the public including the jewish population does not want to see another war in the middle east. thank you for your call and i'm hoping my jewish americans will join groups like jewish voice for peace which is a wonderful
3:30 am
organization that has policies that are actually good for jewish people around the world. >> host: medea benjamin, imagine you would like to work outside of government. he ran for office on the green ticket party for senate. eduardo males then have you considered being a presidential candidate for the pink party? >> guest: i actually prefer being on the outside because i think it is a position where you can constantly be moving forward no matter who is in office than i like the organizing and being part of the larger group. when i was running for office i felt uncomfortable with the me me me thing. you have your name on it t-shirt and pin and you always talk about my position and i like to work in a collective where it is our position. i think it would be great to
3:31 am
have a women's party. it would be great to have the labour party and the multiparty system in the united states. the green party i have been supportive of, but unfortunately the domination of the two-party system doesn't give space to th libertarian party, green party to grow because there is such a duopoly. so i would like to see major changes in the way our electoral system works in the united states is instead of the winner take all have their representation in europe in so many democracies around the world. you get 5% of the bow, 5% of physicians in congress. that would really turn things around. that way the tea party can have its people in congress end quote and can have its people. >> host: we have an hour and 15 minutes left with our guest medea benjamin. we like to ask them what are
3:32 am
their influences, whether they currently reading? stick with us and we will show you medea benjamin's responses. stick with us, we will be back live in just a few minutes. ♪ ♪ ♪
3:33 am
♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪


info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on