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tv   Authors Discuss the Conflict in Syria  CSPAN  May 31, 2017 10:40pm-11:43pm EDT

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our focus on international issues continues with a panel on cbs from the "los angeles times" book festival in april good afternoon, everyone. i am a cultural writer for the "los angeles times" and a longtime foreign correspondent in berlin during the era of uprisings. i've written two novels. thank you for being here in these strange times challenging ideas are critical. that is what the los angeles times in the book festival a aspire to provide. after this we will gladly take
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your questions and have a panel discussion. just a housekeeping note please keep all cell phones off. there will be a book signing with the authors afterwards. no personal recordings of sessions, please. now i would like to introduce the panel, christopher phillips is the senior lecturer in the international relations of the middle east at queen mary university of london that he lived for several years and returns to the middle east for research. an associate fellow at the middle east north africa program and has written for many publications and has appeared on the bbc and cnn. he just published a second about the battle for syria. born in baltimore to disagree al
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immigrant parents a trial attorney in the u.s. department of justice and also worked in the legal field in both the west bank and lebanon. she was a master's degree in journalism from columbia university and reporting hasan appeared in the nation and "new york times." her books include a country called america a u.s. history retold through air of american lives and the new memoir the home that was the country that we will also be discussing today. the author of novels green on blue and the new book dark at the crossing. he lives in istanbul and has covered the war since 2013. writings have appeared in the new yorker, the atlantic and stories have been included inith the best american short stories. a former marine and served five tours of duty in iraq andve afghanistan where he received a silver star, bronze star for
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valor and purple heart. welcome, everybody. [applause] when we think about the era era arab spring it broke down hosni mubarak and pulled from a golfing shot yemen and bahrain, a little bit of saudi arabia ann so on, but syria stands alone. yet walking the broken revolution of dividing the world that has left him standing. we will begin with elliott.
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in your novel that is very powerful there is a moment one of your characters is deciding do i go back and she doesn't want to. he feels there is no life for him anymore and gives powerful t thoughts on the idea of the resolution being shattered. can you give us a little context on where he came from and what it seems to represent for me so much of what happened since 2011. they are also trying to grasp what is the narrative to put this into context.
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so when you look at the spring in 2011 we saw the first widespread protest but if i start spending a lot of timete with a number of activists who are extremely involved in theexl nonviolent protests, something that became very evident to meso early on was the conflict in that experience. every given night we can go out to dinner and start talking politics. they would say you don't understand, it is a viable, only the west will support them, it's not that strong.e they've taken that much ground. we would talk about that and discuss whether it would come out at dinner and we could continue to talk. by the end of dinner they might be struggling sugar into their tea.
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so that idea of a very personal and emotional level how isoe someone going to rectify the event they are most proud of is the one that has given them thei most sorrow, so as a novelist but i could tap into is my experience in the middle east.ex i am extremely proud of having fun in iraq and afghanistan. at the same time there's been a huge amount of wreckage left by those experiences. so if you say to me think of the best days in your life, i would say there were days i was in combat. tell me the ten worst days of your life and it would be that same day so what does it say about that experience and that is what i found present with myself, but it's also something more activists present in theire
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experience so it is almost a shellshocked that everything seems so impossible and become so disillusioned. i think that is certainly part of it. the idea that if you go out into the streets in 2011 and 2012 engaging in peaceful protests to demand more democratic rights and reforms to the authoritarian regime. it's interesting to the other people i've come to know. they were not as quick to
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embrace the resolution and i had a number of people tell me talk about on the streets and say what's the matter don't you believe what i'm doing? you don't understand what that family is capable of. for some of them it is almost as simple as seeing that their parents were proven right in that respect. >> for the marketing it as a memoir. >> it eloquent plea deals with the history of the family and a the pain of the country. can you tell us what it was like for you going back and forth unraveling that country's history and to the familiesuntri history against the context of
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what is happening today. >> hello los angeles, thank you for being here with my gentleman colleagues yes. what was it like, the difference in my work is i didn't come to the story just in the last sixna years. it's a tumultuous experience in the 1940s until today. when there is stagnation we long associated with the region and we've been giving way to something else.
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i've always been a frequent visitor. it is a police state that is always watching you and so for me who is an american and has been in the human rights law and a journalist there was a lot of suspicion around me, so i needed to have a reason and i was renovating my grandmother's house in the metaphor of therouh book in the house my grandmother moved to.s
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she stayed there until 1970 when she rented it out. the house was taken for 40 years until 2010 we were able to get it back. t the metaphor was humbled in a different kind of story so what it was like to be there at the time. there was constantly -- we talk about this in the united states to some extent and in 2011 there was always a counter merit of being put forth by the regime of
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what was happening wasn't this kind of indigenous advising. it wasn't peaceful or civil society based and the foreign intervention into these are things i talk about in the book. it's not just big news for the sake of fake news. it's what would be accepted if you want to counter that narrative verbally or in yourad action. it was my first chance to be considered as an adult. there's always this kind of? about me and it was devastating. >> the u.s. and other countries
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are in search of what do we do with this and i think that it comes at a freely interesting time in the american it was a retraction of the involvement in the world. president trump fired some tomahawk missiles and the plane still flies. people started taking up arms at the peaceful uprising but we are talking about that turned into this civil war.
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the problem from the united states perspective was twofold. it just doesn't have the reserves or the history. it's actually been thatntry tha interested. when you look at how the unitedo states reacted. there are the universal valueser and freedom of speech and so on and the reaction was related tol the strategic importance, so for
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example. so when people put throug took e streets after eight long period of time they said we need to do something about this and they caught on the phone to the military in egypt and said to do something about this. the flipside of that is great.u. it wasn't that important.. it was an enemy state saying we
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need stability here for the regime change and so that is tha starting point. so the great thing -- [inaudible] [laughter] that is what is going on in egypt. they talk to those in the military because we have a relationship with them. they hadn't had an ambassador from the 2005 to 2011. they didn't know this country and what is interesting are the generalizations of whathen i
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happened. so they went from one position where they started crushing this rebellion. he's going to be fine. we trust that he will stop being aggressive. in 2011 he says i must stand aside and he says that because it was like the other states but they didn't know. i did my research on this anddef they did not focus on thisid nof country. that is the starting point.
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the second part they don't know that much about. in terms of geopolitics, the united states wanted out of the middle east. after the 2003 debacle, they wanted to step back saying we don't want to get stuck in the middle east. east ma temporarily, they abandoned that logic when they got involved in libya and it reinforced the idea of getting involved in the middle eastern countries. so they have these two problems where it is a country that i care that much about and secondly, for donald trump. we were just talking about this earlier. we still don't know what the approach to the middle east is. despite this strike that he's
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done he is restrained by the same. they don't know that much about the country. it seems to be even more now than it was because donald trums even on the campaign trail don't want to get involved in thea region so perhaps it is less precision. i don't see them making a major shift. it often seemed flat-footed by what rises to the top and it
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seems so often the intel on the ground has a lack of connectionn for the position papers and what i would like each of you to do a long bath line, so many hands have been reaching in with so many different parts. what would each of you say. we don't want to go down the whole list but where would you feel most damaged and i will start with you. >> the analysis is right on. the one thing that i would add to the context is at this moment the u.s. disengagement at the ts middle east had what was
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ostensibly the end of the iraq war.ib we can't understand of the u.s. political positions. it was very important for the november 2012 election. when we look back at ostensibly all the troops had to be pulled out of iraq because we couldn't get the status of forces agreement. we could have assured that they have the protections that they needed but we have thousands in iraq right now and we still need to be able to declare victory in iraq. it is during the iraq war where you end up with a massive population that would disenfranchise the rights of thm islamic state.i reme
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in the fall of 2013 right cross the border by remember we were watching fighting going on and it was one of the first liberated towns held for monthse and months. why are they fighting each oth other. the first realization where the goals were to create the caliphate. what we have right now is an oversimplification with the
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regime and the islamic state that is a partner directly linked to the iraq war. when i spent tim spend time in t of the world i think that we have the sense that we are important but whenever i'm there it's humbling and that we are not the central actors in this. if the u.s. can figure out the correct alchemy all of these will go away. it's understanding the nuance of culture and where people live. i remember in northern iraq where i spend a lot of time in the buildup to the iraq war i wanted to hang out with these
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fishmonger fighters. he said bring a goat. it is a sign of respect and they will take you in on it so it is things like that go a long way. i would like to bring the conversation back. this is true there is a bottle of debate. that's one conversation we can have, but a lot of people in the middle east find it hard to believe that it is incompetent. whether or not that is true ise another debate. but a lot of people over there think it is by design and that has to be relevant to the conversation we are having here and if it is incompetent or by design that is little comfort to the people on the ground and that are living their lives
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against these simplistic modes. it's not just the latest. these are the analysis of the conflict. this is how they see it and it should have relevance. >> they are just kind of incompetence. they don't necessarily know buth then what does that mean to them. are you telling us if they didn't want him gone for example he wouldn't be gone beats our conversations you have all the time.
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.. for any further mental listing involvement doesn't mean it hasn't been involved in the syria. they've been involved since the beginning. the two principal players that were backing the regime, whether or not were any conflict today, the chaos you can rest at the doorstep of the regime. all of the things that came after is because of the reactions of the regime and its taxable backers were russia and iran. they were negotiating in massive nuclear deal with iran. i was at the white house. i had conversations was syria questioning something that you are leverage in those negotiations. it was clear that getting the deal was the priority. using that l there were ways to play these cards. turkey is a major ally, so this
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idea that we weren't involved is not true and this is what the syrians will tell you so whether or not the u.s. is competent and that doesn't change the effect of whatever the united states is doing. >> but it certainly is staying on global politics are expanded like a ripple in the pond and we have got millions of refugees and we have the rise of right-wing populist and the great disruption in the world order based on one yet no one has the willingness to stop because of entrenched political reasons are sometimes changing political reasons. what about that christopher. >> it is a stain on everybody's, on all of us. that's a discussion for anothero channel. >> having participated in the iraq war and i would sit with
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many syrians who would voice their complete disgust at how is it that the united states is asleep at the wheel and allowing all of us to go on? they also discussed that you a will destroy this region in iraq to get rid of saddam hussein and in fact any western military was would have invaded military country you can never do that again. a fair point. the sign of the superior intellect at the same moment and not go insane. are we supposed to invade or not because the application of this if you do want to go and i just say this, she's not going to leave easily and there is no partner force in syria. >> is a former marine has been on the ground what was the stomach do you think for thehe american public to go into another misguided venture?
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>> i remember in 2000 and not going to sit here and pick him that i have the answer but in 2012 i was sitting with a marine buddy of mine saying to send the first marine division into northern syria from turkey i'll put on my uniform and my metals and rock 4th of july style a march on the capital. it's outrageous. a year later i'm speaking in syria and seeing what the reciprocal of that is that the idea that it doesn't take some type of massive intervention i think there's lots of pressure. for instance right now you'll have the mosul battle which will probably finish in the new battle for raqqa. he was going to fight that battle tax the assumption is the kurds are going to do it but most low is very hard-fought and
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they are not the iraqi army that we have invested in for 10 to or 12 years. the syrian kurds didn't have -- the turks are not going to allow us to give them abrams tanks. so much of this i do think one has to really look at what these things mean to go in and real full-throated glee get rid of charlotte siobhan that would mean committing u.s. troops for vastly arming some type of surrogate partner force. that leads to a huge problem in syria. >> there are two things and i will make a point made by alia. let's call a spade a spade. the battle in mujahideen against afghanistan in 2012 it
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intervened in iraq in 2003. intervened in 2011 and has not ended well. it's not likely point to and example and say right this is when he to in syria and that will work. he would repeat every time clinton or petraeus came with him with a plan to arm rebels he would say give me an example of when this works. people would argue well that doesn't mean you shouldn't do id but the evidence and looking at the past record it's not good.rl the only time he seen intervention working are in small places like kosovo or the balkans for sierra leone at large countries.e >> they were more contained. >> you can look at that and say this is in gray. the other problem is that the united states is seemingly unaware of the perception of its own power.
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united leaders have got big mouth and they talk a big talk and when they talk the talk you can expect them to act. the first happened in iraq in 1991 when george w. bush said we will come and help you.rians hae that's exactly have the syrians have been treated. they called him bashar al-assads to stand down. he and his advisers seem to think this was policy and it was the right thing to do. what was interesting is the day after he made that statement he went on vacation for two weeks. this is not someone that was going in war footing but if youn spoke to syria for time and regional powers they think a regime change is not u.s. policv so they calculated a massive uptake in people taking up arms
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in syria. it was already happening but there was a point when united states would come and help us. most of the rebels started thinking how he would prompt some type of intervention from united states. there was a point about being ae responsible world leader which don't have a big mouth and don't say stuff just to throw away a comment. if you aren't to be the leader of the free world when you call in regimes to fall do something about a. >> when you were part of your book that i found so eloquent and picks up on what they were talking about while this was going on, the syrians were suffering and they are still suffering years later but though one of the parts illuminated for me in your book was a section that deals with the psychodrama and you and i talked about that
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where a priest comes than intel's people don't think about the fear in the pain. tried it during and the way you told that was so skillfully done. all the dreams came out and they couldn't be met. c i just want to preface this by saying before i talk about it they are different questions we can ask. the question how do you remove the shore outside so maybe itshy doesn't necessitate questionser about military intervention. the questions you are asking our how do you keep serious safe and create a state where we have the legal equality to actually spend dreams and potential in the answer is we do have a different discussion. i will just leave it at that. >> would the think about the military? >> that was not our only option.
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you have a proxy war and you will have to bring all the stakeholders to the table and you are going to have to make a deal. if you call yourself "the art of the deal" guy let's put your money where your mouth is. deals are not easy. >> we have lost our criticalh ia leverage. everybody has a price. i don't think putin is wedded to bashar al-assad. the iranians, houthi then start to play them off of each other? if they were country that we cared about do we would come up with another solution. [applause] the secret drone was a story i had to sit on for six years. couldn't write about it because i was working secretly on this book and i did do anonymous reporting for some venues, one
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afternoon my cousin said do you want to come with me, i don'tt know which church but a church in damascus and i said i never want to go to church. she said no you will want to go to church this time. she said after service there's this thing called the secret drum and i looked it up. it's a group therapy for you used role-play to work for yourn issues. the priest in damascus, and he won't hear about this from the syrian army. the priest in damascus was like a therapist as priests are and another psychotherapist started a group therapy session. aftermath those who came for mass went downstairs and they were rejoined by other syrians most of them alawites and druze. they had this group therapy session where six people volunteer and the kind of come
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up with this scenario and one of the guys said instead of working for our fear what we have a special session where we talk about our dreams.. there was this back and forth of what kinds of scenarios do you have. the only scenario that they could come up with was that they were at a conference. it's not real and this is in the country conversations have always been chaperoned by the police. people start to take on roles. one woman said i want to be a civil society activists and someone is talking as a parent and they are talking about the dreams are. someone says i'm going to play the role of the regime and just pretend. there is a fear in the room and the first there's the comical cathartic imitation of a regime line but then it becomes the
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regime guy tells everybody you guys are not capable. we will choose your dreams for you and then you don't have to dream. the entire dynamic of theer conversation changes and the exact same thing we were seeing happening outside on the streets in syria. these were the stories i wanted to tell because that is where the future of syria and itsnot t people and not just asking you to fight. >> i will ask a question and we will open it up. elliot in your book you have some real sparse beauty to thiss book and how it accumulates toward the protagonist and the conflicted soul that he an now he is in turkey and in
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syria. you mentioned before about your time on the ground how did that inform you if at all? there are some in the parts about conflict and other things in the understated hand. >> i think what i'm often trying to do is a novel and most of my work takes place overseas or deals with what are by and large the extremely complex things and i have covered the wars as a journalist. in particular when you are covering is a journalist there are so many events every day. there are so many myriad groups and all the complexities that i'm sure sitting out here in the crowd you feel on this issue but how do you distill these events down into some type of emotional truth? how do you tell the story that
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can take the reader who hasn't been in southern turkey and has never been to iraq or syria and take them on a journey where they experience a similar emotional -- so what resonated with me as i've alluded to some people that i had spoken to they like and their experience with revolutions. they had fallen in love with the idea of going out to the streets after they have grown up in ate repressive regime regime and ask if we protested and they film ul to the point where of their family didn't support than they would turn their backs on their family.n in many respects they described the revolution is being an adventure of the heart in that way.y.they in the wake of its failure they were left heartbroken so in the novel i'm trying to figure out what i call my emotional equivalencies. e
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what it's like the emotional equivalent of going on that journey and an adventure of the heart. once it started refilling itself in the story to me was that was the marriage. you have two people and they are living in the air and independent worlds. in any marriage when they meetoe they kind of come together around this idea of a shared world and in that respect falling in love and getting married.l revolu it's their very small revolution. you change your life and create this new world together and sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't. when it doesn't that failure people are left to deal with the wreckage.pects i in my novel dark at the crossing in many respects i would say it's most essential is a story of a failed revolution through the most central characters of
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the dissolution of their marriage. >> speaking of failure and wreckage let's talk about moscow and how it's equation right now in syria.wi washington is concerned it's going to deal with syria. your book discusses that but would he think we are headed? >> it's interesting talking about the failure as well. it does not deny any agency that all but talking about i now sayw the war has not been outsourced. normally in civil wars you get a point whereby the domestic actfg there's recognized they will geo more out of negotiating thanthai
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fighting. syria should it reach that point a long time ago. both sides have particularly the regimes have been constantly supported and reinforced so the russians and iranians doing this the iranian militia from lebanon and iraq and afghanistan and the russian air force with huge amounts of money pumping into the regime to keep it afloat. the problem is that first . the internal dynamics of thenc regime from what i understand still has agency. it's not a proxy war. this is not a question of iranan and russia said jump and they said how high being two powers there he can bounce them off each other, so quite a example when cease-fire break out and often something
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that russias russia arranged wih americanings and then regime that doesn't want to cease-fire and doesn't believe in compromise whatsoever basically gets them onboard and says that will break cease-fire and they do. and you get this, you know, this dynamic you know really affecting what's going on on the grounds. and that there means that this relationship in russians and iranians will be key in determines really how this war ends up. the problem i would say two things, firstly iranian and russians are friendm yirks they have same goal but achieving going about it in totally different way and how they're intervening in syria working with different group. iranians already believe in the syrian state so supporting local militia trying to credit a hezbollah to act as their approximatey. russians believe in state and army and they're working with syrian military and they want the syrian states to come together and where they're working like iranians are
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interested in damascus and area along lebanese board ep and up around coast in the part of syria because they're interested in their basic in meds and based as well so they're doing things in a different way. trump are i i think naively this you can peel russians away from them that is nonsense not because they like each other but because they dislike the americans a lot more collectively and i think that any strategy that is based on trying to get to break apart doesn't really you know you have a very short-term memory. russian and iranians look at the united states as threat. they're against regime change because they think that if it is successful in damascus or by data it will make moscow they'll share that view and so on. the part is going to be difficult.
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other difficult thing is that again, this agency point of the regime, i don't actually believe that either iran or russia is capable of getting rid of al-assad he's played, a very, very monstrous syringe. individual but played a clear clever hand to get future. but slightly russians would like to get rid doesn't make it out. i think only way to get rid of assad is in a body bag. >> they don't care. they will take any. >> but iranians don't care as a individual, but he plays a role for them i think. you know, the issue with them -- is it is very interesting i expect a few people by iranian government and russian government on this. they said the same thing at different time which is is they started off in syria, thinking that assad was this nobody, a
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guy with thought to get rid of him. they borrowed deep into it they realized he played a odd central role and not at all but a chairman of the board. keeping all of the of the different fractions inside syrian regime underneath him like agreeing on that. if he goes, they'll not agree on a single compromise king the and it can track uture what's left of the regiming and both sides i think e inside syria are more and more aware. >> argument from all sides. that's the difficult that around both believe that believe at the moment that means getting rid of iowa cads very, very difficult. >> but there's a stwengt city that supports bashar. it is not just -- multicoheernght that includes the -- elite and their interest in the stwengt city is not specifically are going to have be part of what deal and that's the problem
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only talking about how do we, you know, how do we topple regime or not topple regime because that -- that doesn't -- that doesn't necessitate the conversation sort of -- incorporate and try to keep this as that metaphor about this house and history of this house over, you know, includes the 40 years that, you know, so the house is taken from us for 40 years and somebody else had this thousands for 40 year and when i wrote the bock i thought you know that -- that person was a principle villain but i realized if i don't include 40 years of the history of that house and this book then i've done the same thing that's done in syria whatever pour is exchanged that we totally negate and pretends that nothing else had ever come before and i think moving forward no matter what happens in the the after there we can't keep excluding parts that we don't like. there will have to be a sort of all parts have to be includessed. >> okay.
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so i -- i would urge you to buy each of these books they're quite aluminating and very good. [applause] and they'll be on sale at signing area one. but now let's open it up to some questions. do we have a mic? we have some hands up. here's a gentleman right here. question for elliot. you mentioned earlier in discussion that -- you're proud of fighting in iraq and afghanistan. i'm curious why. >> i am -- i am proud o .. ing about war is this brings out o the best and the absolute worst in people. so the worst is, obviously, the killing, you know, but at the
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same time you see i've seen guys very best friends run out in the street when they're shot laying there bleeding going to drag them out you know drag them and bring them safely back home and you start to ask yourself the question why do people do things like that and one of the things i learned in war is that for instance, you know, i saw a lot of very, a lot of courage. >> i was afraid, i know what the earth feels like. i bet you do too.acute fears are a very acute emotion. i really want to know what courage feels like. what is the opposite of fear. they feel.s so i was in iraq and afghanistan
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and seeing them on a personal level in this is my 20s and i thought what is the opposite of fear. why do people go out do theseou things for one another. so you you don't feel brave. you feel love and so, i thought a lot of people do remarkable things for each other and difficult circumstances because they loved one another. what i'm proud of his being part of groups of people who loved one another in that way. age and frankly i was a young man of a certain age my country was at war and i made the decision that if that was going on that i wanted to look back and say i raise my hand and said i'm gonnh go. and people might disagree with that decision but at the end of the day when i was there and i look and i have kids now.
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i hope they will never have that decision. i hope there will not be award to go off to. once you're there it becomesrs much more personal of the things that i'm proud of this in the relationship that existed amongst us. so when the time came there sufficient love that people would go out. >> we have a question in the back. >> thank you for your answer. i appreciate that.ession people would experience these kinds of things with each other going back to the beginning of time. it's irrelevant of what were your and you will have these type of experiences. you have to kill the other people, it is not something good, back, or different it's just the fact. we screwed up so bad in vietnam, why on god's earth do we think
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we can fix anything in the middle east, why are weng money committing money, bodies, time, blood over there for the sake of what? why are we just a mineral country and doing something back here instead of sprawling upright out there and pretended like we can fix it all everywhere, it doesn't happen, it won't work. what's your take on that? >> i would like to get back to the grid. >> allow me to jump in on that. it is very good question. the answers that i tend to make of someone who is british with a longer history of past parts ofr the world, you guys have done it right so real proud of you. i think there is a component of responsibility which is that i completely agree with one of the
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problems i see that u.s. policymakers are front since you end of the cold war set rose the solution. if there's a problem there must be a military solution to it i think that is a real problem but, i think one think the united states should do better. is there are other tools in ther box you can use sanctions and diplomacy. very rarely is diplomacy used to the extent it used to be the cold war was the real shame actually because he couldn't just go around and bomb everybody. i think it is not good enough, really for countries that have
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had a big role in messing up part of the world to then justi turned tail and say were not interested anymore.. i think it's a real problem. the minute some point is that we cannot afford it anymore you're on your own. the cause problems. i think the united states also has responsibility having been involved in places not justst things militarily and not just to say this is a working anymore, there needs to be something in some involvement. i would argue that the superpowers of the world would do better to listen to what the people in this parts of the world actually want rather than assume what needs to be that requires making biggersion concessions that most majorre powers are not willing to make.o
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>> i think were so much more comfortable taking action is supposed responsibility and having any kind of -- thank you. we do not reconcile with our history. i think another countries we both lived in italy, the italians love how imperfect they are. but americans cannot recognize any kind of imperfection. let alone what we have done to other countries. so, i don't know. they grabbed a hold ourselves accountable. we are involved. we are involved in syria even before now we have render people doing the cold war on terror with george bush junior when you
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want torture here. we normalized his father when we wanted him to be part of bush fathers ovation. an we have to be honest about it. we can just have memories that started yesterday or six years w ago there to be more comprehensive we have to be okay with being the bad guys every once in a while. >> sometimes i wonder if it was about how to act responsible about it. everyone points back here to grab grades quiet america. who is like an innocent naïveté became almost a caricature version of it. the more involvement came in and is more more secrets came to light there's a lot of stuff that we cannot say that will
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while we mean right. i don't mean this in it extreme negative sense but in that we can do it, we have a brand that works and to try it here. just like we sell dishwashing liquid instead. it doesn't work. the world is full of manyynd different cultures and things. it's distressing to see it happen over and over. we have time for one more question. >> i appreciate the thoughts so i will use the word normal advisedly. to what extent to everyday syrians within the territory that aside controls have normal lives? >> that depends.ctricity for example where my family they
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have massive inflation, the cost of food has gone up $1.50 is totally blown up. book becaus one of the dynamics we talk about because living in aabecau totalitarian state you not become just a victim you're also a bystander.of normal. everybody's players in this theater that the regime isre invested in maintaining. to that you're able to go along and have life and we can have is because of the rebels. that is damascus. other places on the coast and the people who make up the army in the regime have taken internally displaced n
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that economy is doing quite well in many ways because it's one of the few places that people feel like it's safe to stay. then where they have retaken control they have looked at the population they want and have started planning forreconstr reconstruction and they will demographically secure their power by who they bring in which is something the father did initially because he comes from the coast. they moved a lot of people who would be loyal to them and built an external part of damascus. they're gonna kinda do the same thing in areas that have been clear. >> that brings us to an end. thank you for coming. [applause]
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[inaudible conversation] [inaudible] [inaudible] >> sunday night on afterwards, the brassica senator explores how to encourage adolescents and young adults to become independent, active and engaged citizens in his book, the banishing american adult and how to rebuild a culture of self-reliance. he's interviewed by the founder and president of the millennial action president. >> by and large students that will graduate this spring and summer from college going to change jobs three times, not just jobs, industries, three times in the first decade
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postcollege. that's new. all of the scary stuff that produced this during the was about the idea that job disruption created unsettling ripples into human capital and social networks. a lot of what people panicked about is what we will experience that warps forever more. where 40, 45 and 50 euros get disrupted out of jobs and out of industries. we'll have to create a civilization of lifelong learners. no civilization has done a. >> watch afterwards on sunday night on book tv. >> book tv is on twitter and facebook. we want to hear from you. tweet us, or post a comment on her facebook page. next, will hear from


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