tv Washington Journal CSPAN March 20, 2011 7:00am-10:00am EDT
[captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2011] >> everywhere and europe and and america, your people agree with it. the whole people are against you. your governments, your regime will go down. host: a defiant response just two hours ago from libyan leader
gaddafi as missiles continue to hit key targets overnight. 48 deaths were reported. this is the largest international military effort since the iraq war. today's military action taking place the same weekend egyptian residence are going to the polls to vote on the senate -- is changes to its constitution. voters in haiti going to the polls to select a new president. our president and rio de janeiro, day to bureau of his south american trip where his focus is on jobs, trade, and the economy, and congress is in recess. we are going to focus on the story from libya. and your calls and reaction as u.s. and allies strike those targets.
202-737-0002, our line for democrats. 202-737-0001 for republicans. for independence, the number to call is 202-628-0205. here are some of the headlines from domestic newspapers beginning with "new york post." "take that gaddafi." "strike one." an air assault, no ground troops, but tomahawk missiles continue to strike those targets. some other headlines beginning with the chicago tribune. u.s. allies are attacking libya. most of it right along the coast. you can see along the mediterranean sea. l.a. times -- attacks on libya. you can see from the u.s. and navy destroyers. operation "odyssey dawn" was the
name of the operation. from the "richmond times- dispatch", the u.s. striking libyan forces. and from the "miami herald", libya under fire. you can join the conversation online at twitter.com/cspanwj. caller: good morning. i would like to know what the heck is going on. here we are and another freakin' war. congress is on vacation. who is minding the store? i'm appalled. i think it will have to have a u.s.-nationwide recall and get the buildings of of the building behind you. host: the president speaking to
reporters and brazil saying it is a humanitarian effort to help the people of libya. next is a viewer from chicago. good morning. go ahead. caller: i think this war -- they are taking, the rioting. they should not allow him to kill all the innocent people. it's time to let everyone out there know. host: from page of "the new york times", a number of stories related to the situation. a no-fly zone is imposed. american and european forces beginning a broad campaign of strikes against the government of colonel gaddafi yesterday. in a scale not seen since the iraq debbie war. and a mission to keep gaddafi
from using air power against the weaker global forces was betrayed by pentagon and nato officials as under french and british leadership. but the pentagon said that american forces were conducting a campaign to knock out libya's air defense systems, firing more than 100 tomahawk missiles. caller: long time since i talked to you. i think this is the camle'el's nose under the door and mr. obama's fine dish which to get us into africa. -- fondest wish to get us into africa. no good news for taxpayers. host: u.s. and allies a striking at libya, that is the headline. richard is a joining us from massachusetts. good morning. i think this is
totally ridiculous. when they talk about gaddafi killing his own people and how we are such nice people ourselves, yet we let babies be butchered and their mothers womb and we call ourselves good, nice people. we are a bunch of hypocrites. whatever they do to us, we deserved. host: from twitter, how do we win in libya? we're supposed to believe that we protect other protesters? you can join the conversation at twitter.com/cspanwj. 202-737-0002 is our line for democrats, and 202-737-0001 for republicans. if you are an independent, the number to call this 202-628- 0205. in new orleans, u.s. allies
striking libya. "we cannot stand idly by," comments from the president yesterday. he travels to the capital of brazil today. good morning. caller: hosthello. good morning. yes, i think it is a shame that we are spending the taxpayers' money over there in the middle east. the main concern is that they are attacking the middle class here in the united states. host: mike joins us from ohio. we're getting your reaction. caller: i would like to know what congress is doing to stop our executive branch and the military. here is another undeclared war.
i am sick and tired of our government -- every time i turn around they are battling the rest of the world. host: gaddafi defiant after the attacks appeared and a separate letter address is of a two david cameron net and to the un secretary, the letter saying that the un move is invalid because of the resolution which does not allow intervention into the internal affairs of other countries. john is joining us from newport news, virginia. good morning. e'll go to claude who is joining us from california. welcome to the conversation on the republican line. caller: here we go again. i hope it works out that we do not -- so it's now forever. we need to develop oil and our
country so that we could say goodbye to middle eastern oil. host: you can also send us an e- mail. good morning. where are you calling from? caller: from west virginia. i am amazed that we kind of market the u.s., our leaders, hillary clinton is the most absurd, to mark the invasion of iraq, the illegal and immoral invasion of iraq, 8 years ago to the day yesterday. it is a good that we went with a coalition of the willing and it was voted legal by the un, but on the other hand, we have not even counted the dead in iraq. "washington journal", the mainstream media, the lancet report said that 750,000 people
were killed as a resrult oult of our invasion of iraq. the american people are kept and thin the dark. libya, we depend upon our experts. and hopefully they have made the right decision, but the american people really need to educate themselves about these issues in a wider scope. interesting. there are marches going on in washington this weekend, against the invasion of iraq. and going to bradley manning's present about his imprisonment. if the media would could do their job, there would be no need for wikileaks.
if he would show the american people what is really going on in iraq, we would not have need for leaks like this. i hope that you cover some of the protests going on in d.c. this weekend. you missed the protests before the war. host: march 19, 2003, when president bush announced the u.s. invasion of into iraq. we have covered the protests. i would point out we have in the past. we will go to georgia. good morning. caller: good morning. i called you and 2003 when president bush invaded iraq and i said we had opened up a pandora's box. it proved to be true, but the thing is is that you cannot have
it both ways. we wanted to tell, we want to say we are here to do something about this. how can he let this go on? how can he let the people be killed? and then on the other hand, the same people are saying, he didn't need to do this. which is it? you know, steve, the president obama got elected and 2008. everybody and the whole world, republicans, libertarians, democrats, everybody has to know that everything started before him. so now he is in something -- like crabs coming out of japan, being pulled down by everyone. what is right? what is wrong? president bush was too fast to go into war. they say he is too slow.
he is going to take his time to see if he is right and do the right thing by people, not just black people, ever ready. this man loves everybody. you got white people that created this mess and that is coming down on him like he did it. something is wrong with this world. we see things going on and look at it in an abstract way. was notthis war started by president obama. we did not start having money shortage from president obama. he is the first black african american president. you white people sitting around a pole and give your opinion about things. -- around tables and give your opinions about things. you always have done best. this. guehost: our thanks to al-
jazeera that is showing us what is going on in libya. from "the new york times", the allies open the air assault on gaddafi forces. residents interviewed. there was heavy fighting and the city center and pro-gaddafi snipers could be seen on the building, not far from the courthouse that is the council posey had quarter. beyond the security council's authorization to keep gaddafi's forces from attacking civilians. western diplomats say there was no clear end game. it may be the military intervention that lead to negotiations with the opposition for the colonel and his his
family to go. or it buys times for the rebels to regroup. good morning. caller: how are you today? host: fine, thank you. caller: to my knowledge, i believe we are still the most powerful nation on the planet. and i look at it as, if we were libya, and the same thing were to happen to us, we would want someone to take care of us. we are trying to help folks. i have no problem with that. i support what we are doing. a lot of folks are making comments that were only over there for oil, oil, oil. i really do not think so. guys are doing some bad stop over there -- bad stuff over there. host: so you people that bush
bashed in iraq? will you bash obama this morning? we have seen the stories and the headline this morning in "the post," but from your vantage point, tell us what you are seeing and hearing and what it is like now as we move into the afternoon in libya? guest: it seems most of these strikes are well off outside the city. the government has not told us what was hit. we have not heard many explosions and tripoli except for one or two this morning that was followed by anti- aircraft fire. the actual explosions that came from that were quite far away. host: this is called operation "odyssey dawn".
we're joined by british and french troops. many of the stories pointing out what hillary clinton said yesterday, this is not a u.s.- led effort. what is the diplomatic reason behind that? guest: it is clear that president obama wanted to distinguish himself from george bush before him. and show he is back on unilateralism =-- not on unilateralism. they have been very anxious to step back from the forefront in this. host: how are you covering this story? are you worry about your own personal safety? guest: we are kept in one hotel. they control our movements of in and out of the hotel.
we are not allowed to go to sensitive areas. if you go to those areas, there is a high chance that you will be picked up and detained or escorted back to the hotel. we do not have all lot of freedom of movement. you can find enthusiastic gaddafi protestors who wave pictures of him. wear green scarves, the symbol of his regime. so we are very much aware that there are some people that support gaddafi, but getting all the people who do not is very hard host. host: where is gaddafi now? guest: we don't know. he lives about two hours away from where i am right now.
baghdad.lar to yesterday, they let us into see supporters who had gathered there. that is where he lives. he lives in a tent, where he receives visitors. whether he is there or not, we do not know. we were promised to appear yesterday, but he did not. we were given two addresses on state tv since the bombing started, but both of them were by telephone call to an undisclosed location. host: we are talking to one of the reporters from "the new york times" covering the story. we've seen the strike's over the last 24 hours. what is next and what is the endgame of u.s. and allied forces? guest: it is very well to bomb gaddafi's assets and established
the no-fly zone, but then what? they do not have the firepower to reach tripoli. if they do try to make and events on tripoli, would the allies take sides? if so, how would they do that? what will happen in tripoli. we did see huge protests that were brutally suppressed with live ammunition. people say they do not dare go out on the streets again. one concern is that this could stalemate.o a long saddam hussein survived 12 years after the no-fly zone in iraq. host: if gaddafi were to be forced out, what is next?
who could take over this country? guest: that is another huge country. this is ruled by one man, not even by a party. there are no political parties here. gaddafi has dictated everything and there is nobody to take his place. host: finally, thanks for joining us. in terms of how this is playing out identity arab world, does the obama administration have the support that it needs from arab nations to move into the country? guest: it does appear that arab nations are behind this effort. we were told it would take believe. but it was american, british and french aircraft use a first. uae and georgia are sending planes to the efforts.
there is fairly broad arab support for this. that is crucial in getting us some support and thein the region. host: thanks for being with us. your coverage is on the front page of "the washington post". muammar gaddafi in his second address to his people, via telephone. here is more on what he told his people. >> you are with the devil, and the party of the devil will be defeated. what have you got to come and interfere and our affairs? -- in our affairs? you are behind. this interference has no justification. but remember, we are stronger
than you because of our well. -- our will. host: 5:00 eastern time as gaddafi addresses the people. the second time he has done so since the air strikes. rich, jacksonville, florida. we are getting your reaction. good morning. caller: good morning. i don't see why we have the right to be the world police. we seem to think that we can go into any country. we are no better off than gaddafi or any one of the leaders. we are starving the old people, cutting their benefits. they cannot eat. we might not be bombing our citizens, but we are silently
killing them, starting them, failing to provide medical care, letting them die because they cannot afford transplants and surgery. if we organized against washington, they would do the same to us. host: "war is a huge mistake. we cannot afford more blowback. wash, rish, repeat. we never learn." this email "from the halls of montezuma to the shores of tripoli, we will fight gaddafi on the land and air and sea." caller: i was busy last week heard what extent we have been -- what exactly happened last week? what is the rationale behind
what is going on right now? host: the president announcing on friday and we have part of what he said before leaving for brazil, saying this is a mission that is indicated to protect the american people. here is more from the president on friday as he addressed the country from the white house. >and we don't have that. let me share the front page of "the washington post". as gaddafi forces are targeted, u.s. and british forces and training at tomahawk missiles on libyan forces, launching a un-supported air strike. walter, ky. good morning. caller: what happens when our government shutdown? what happens to the u.s.?
we are at the point with our government where we can still remain strong and start fixing a lot of the problems we have here at home. but when i see 100 tomahawk missiles, i see over $1 million goes out the door. we have economic problems that are not being fixed. when we continue and continue to spend money on our trips other places, i do not condone what gaddafi is doing. go get him. i am glad to hear it is not a u.s.-led tyrade, but the american people, myself especially, we are worried about what is going on with our own budget. host: carl has this point. "it appears we have another bush. what ever happened to the change obama? war 3. are the other un members pay for
this operation? nato picks up the tab and pace with their blood and treasure -- and pays with their blood." caller: good morning. i was worried for a few weeks because of the genocide that is happening. i was glad to see -- hillary's the work she has done. the world is in flux, everybody. i think we need to back everybody where we can, and we need to focus on our own country and i think technology will pull us through a lot of the stuff. god bless america. i am proud of obama. i am a born again republican. host: president obama is showing that he can push a country around but will not arrest wall street crooks?
the president is in brazil. photographed with brazil's newly elected president. the president is grappling with crews missiles in libya, and the crisis and japan and wanting to ensure a bigger u.s. share of latin america's robust economics. he will travel to chile and el salvador. he will be back and washington wednesday evening. we have a caller from india appeared. ana. caller: i know we have a lot of problems here in america, but there is nothing more important than freedom. if you look at these libyans,
all they want is freedom. i do not understand why there are not more becker is behind this. i do not see anything more important and freedom. it is not a small world anymore. there are problems out there. anybody thinks that we are bullies. we have to lead by example. we are one of the most strongest countries and america. we need to set the example that we will not let a tyrant destroy his people. we, the people, are the government. i think americans have forgotten what it is like to fight for freedom. i know it has been a long time. host: thanks for the call. the house of representatives is
out this week. congress is never and the building. they are on vacation this week. the house and senate calling it a district work period. "the new york times" has this headline and the aftermath of the earthquake and a tsunami and in japan. japan edging forward in its balttle to move forward. it had radiation in spinach and milk at farms up to 90 miles away from plants. wendy from lynchburg, virginia. good morning. caller: good morning. i would like to say that i support gaddafi 100%. i am 54 years old. he is trying to get rid of the
rebels over the year that are disrupting his country. for other countries to come in, when we did not go tininto egypt, and we go in and killed his son. we chose that war. we chose to bomb his house. it is wrong for us to go in when he has almost regained his country. i'm glad we are in america. i support our president. i support all the journalists. i am tired of hearing people bash the president and the journalists and this and that. i may not agree, but at least i am free to say what i want. host: the president before leaving on friday, outlining why u.s. efforts are in libya. here is part of what is had to say. >> the resolution lays out very
clear conditions that must be met. the united states, the united kingdom, france, and arab states agreed that a cease-fire must be implemented immediately. that means all attacks against civilians must stop. gaddafi must stop its troops from advancing on benghazi, pull them back and establish water, electricity, and gas supplies to all areas. humanitarian assistance must be allowed to reach the people of libya. let me be clear. these terms are not negotiable. these terms are not subject to negotiation. if gaddafi does not comply with the resolution, the international community will impose consequences. the resolution will be enforced
to military action. host: those consequences no evident over the weekend. the atlanta journal constitution -- it is being called operation "odyssey dawn". the u.s. joined by british and french forces, striking key targets and in libya. led by france -- the "miami herald," "libya under fire." what is the endgame. next is of you are joining us on our international line from kenya. good morning. caller: you see, this situation in libya is this -- is very concerning. the international community has whatly seemed to have lost
it means to have a sovereign state, to respect the sovereign state. what is going on is a policy that is directed at a country. it's not being looked at carefully. it is a policy to disturb the country and destroy gaddafi. once gaddafi is gone, there will be chaos and civil war. nobody is going to be responsible for this. this is directed to make a country like somalia. i'm just -- what is the policy of the u.s. and the international community? is it an emotional, tried to
justify interference? host: were in kenya are you calling from? caller: i'm calling from -- i left there two months ago. but i'm just so upset at what is going on. it could become another somalia. what is happening in libya, you have been one-man government that needs help. then these to work with the international community to maybe make a constitution, and then they can have a elections. other than no government, that is going to be corrupt people pushing and pulling and doin g this.
you'll have a destabilize country at the end. host: the house of representatives and the senate sending the president a cr that includes $6 billion andin cuts. it keeps the government running through three weeks. we will be talking to david brody of christian broadcasting network and michael shear from "the new york times" and our sunday roundtable. back to the news from "the washington post" this morning. some officials fear that gaddafi could turn to mustard gas if he gets desperate. in recent weeks as we prepared to intervene, they have been focusing on a small garage in the desert. the libyan government keeps
about 10 tons of mustard gas and a half-dozen large canisters. in yemen, the opposition encouraging protesters. this is the scene yesterday as demonstrations continued there. an email saying there has ban on rest and the middle east for months now? what makes libya different? egypt, saudi arabia, why libya? terry joins us from fort worth, texas. good morning. caller: good morning. i think it is a doggone shame that we have to continue to stick our nose and other people's business before we really know what goes on. i am not even really sure -- we have done this many times in the last 46 years, sticking people andin there. i do not trust our government. they are continuing to stick our
nose in other people's business. hillary clinton trying to get world wide laws that match u.s. laws. i do believe this is totally wrong. we have enough problems of our own. let those people over there take care of their own business. let's take care of our business right now. for them to to continue to be bombing people because they have stockpiles of cruise missiles and everything else and experimental stuff, which they did with us in viet nam. as far as i am concerned it is totally wrong. you can talk all you want to about the united nations, but this is nothing but a squeeze play by the united states and a few other little countries that want something done because they are mad at somebody or they have an agenda. that is what has been going on. host: you have seen some of the pictures courtesy of al jazeera.
"this war has nothing to do with freedom. if libya did have oil, -- didn't have oil, we would do nothing." this is the scene from port-au- prince yesterday. of ballotsst round was a disaster of the man-made variety. things are supposed to be smoother this time around. following the dramatic return of exiled president aristide, no one is sure how it will play out. christopher joins us from the bronx in york. good morning. caller: good morning. i'm a fan of c-span. i'm 31. i voted for obama. i was not caught up and the hope
and change things. i thought he was a gentleman that looked like he would do what was right. i can say since 2009, up until now, he is done what needed to be done. and i support the gentleman. i think that hillary clinton and susan rice in the un are stalwart people. go, america, and support your president, support the country. i think we are on the right track. unemployment is coming down. i think they will work on a good budget eventually appeared the entitlements stuff that you like to talk about all the time, eventually they will do of that. we are going to be fine. host: the "miami herald" -- "libya under fire." j.c. joining us from dallas,
texas, independent line. good morning. caller: good morning. my voice is sore. i do not see what good can come of this at all. i wanted to say what about gaddafi's allies like russia, china, venezuela? when he is blown out, what replacement, the muslim brotherhood? this is seems like this is one more step to world war iii. i do not know what is wrong with this administration. there is somebody protests against this. it seems like they are turning out the american people. thank you. "the new yorkom times", even as the allied intervention began, a group of reporters were bused into a rare visit inside gaddafi's compound.
their hundreds of supporters are offering themselves as human shields. house by house, the catchy song, one quoting a gaddafi speech. the crowd included many women and children. some say that they have family and in colonel gaddafi's forces. that story is from the front page and inside." . we are joined from long island, new york. good morning. caller: for the first time, i'm an american palestinian, and i feel that it is the first time
the united states is doing a good job. god bless america for getting rid of this dictator who has suppressed his people for 40 years. now the hope that the united states will do the same thing with the state of israel when they brutally and savagely attacked the palestinians. there should be no double standard. thank you appe. host: "where is the money going to come from?" "unbroken" remains number one on the net "the new york times" -- the "the new york times" book list. some of the stories from the book section of "the new york times". phoenix, arizona. welcome to the conversation. caller: i do support what the
president is doing. some of these calls are disappointing. the united states stands for freedom. when people are crying out and they need freedom, some of your callers are week when it comes to that. that is pretty sad. there are military members out there. i am not -- i am probably a little biased and that is what people are going to think, but i do not want war. i do not want any of that. but when freedom are -- but people are crying for freedom, that is what we stand for. i support the president and i disagree with him on many things, but this is one thing i do agree with him on. i think people like wendy who called earlier, talking about we tried to kill his son. i wish she would go back and look at history. remember pan am flight 103.
everybody seems to forget those families that are hurting because of what gaddafi did that time. i know it is not related to what we are doing now, but there is so much -- only so much you can put up with when someone is attacking, attacking, and attacking you were there is overt or covert. it gets tiring after a while. host: nicolas sarkozy greeting at secretary of state henry clinton yesterday. this sort from "the new york times" is that she made it a point yesterday to indicate that this was not a u.s.-led effort. the first missiles were french missiles joined by british missiles. overnight, tomahawk missiles and the u.s. hitting key targets. one viewer says: "why libya?
when good people are abused by their government, good people will change their government unless they are used and abused ." caller: i'm angry about what we are doing in libya. in other countries, they have bullet trains, they have such strong infrastructure. in the united states, we do not have the infrastructure. when you travel by train, you traveled by amtrak that was built and the 1960's. we put all our money into war. in athens, they had democracy and ever ready talks about the democracy originating there but nobody ever talks about why athens fell, and it was because of the peloponnesus anian wars. we do not learn from history. you can say that people like me are weak, but when you look at the infrastructure in to the
united states, it is not there. when you travel to other countries, they have the bullet trains. i do not know why americans have a hard time understanding this. thank you. host: benedictpope benedict saye wants to make sure that libyans have access to international aid. dominique joins us. good morning. caller: i am calling to show my support to president obama. the quick action he has taken in libya. if we do not strike now, he will strike later. this madman has powers and
powerful weapons that can strike the world. let's kill him before he kills us. please, thse people -- these people that are calling about their support for gaddafi, they need to educated. this is a madman. i agree with what they are doing, president sarkozy and president obama. host: a tomahawk crews missile is launched from a destroyed. this is an image provided by the u.s. navy. our sunday roundtable as coming up in a moment. patrick turns us from tennessee -- joins us from tennessee. caller: i voted for obama. you have a lot of people online disregarding freedom and what freedom stands for. i have watched the coverage of egypt. i feel like everybody is calling
for freedom in the middle east. they are asking for our help. as opposed to the last 10 years when the united states put themselves on false pretenses and went to another country and bombed them. we are doing what we are supposed to be doing. this is what america is supposed to be doing is helping people feel free and helping people wake up day-to-day and not worry about someone oppressing them. that's all i have to say. host: we have shown some of the photographs from the military, including some scenes courtesy of the defense department. "hell on gaddafi." operation "odyssey dawn". the areas that they have targeted, all of them along the mediterranean sea. greg from oxon hill, maryland. "good morning america" .
caller: bush started the iraq war, afghanistan war. the united states is attacking pakistan and libya. what people need to understand is that it is the same pretext for going into war -- we got to protect the libyan rebels. why don't you protect the rebels in bahrain. we are being duped as usual. it does not matter who is and in office. books to read. read "hoodwinked" by john perkins and " confessions of an economic hit man," by john perkins. corporations are very much involved. and libya has oil, ok? host: one of our viewers
saying that the president is campaigning as the anti-iraq, anti-war, remember hope and change? "the u.s. coalition can achieve its goals in libya, but the possibility of gaddafi staying in power is one possib ility." admiral mullen a saying that he does think that gaddafi is more isolated than ever. the libyan leader will have to make commenhoices about his own future at some point. coming up, our roundtable.
michael shear and david brody us.bn whilill join but first, a look at some of the other topics and guest making a sunday morning shows heard on c- span radio. >> at noon eastern time, c-span tv talkireairs the five shows. we note that stephen chu appears on each program today. we begin with "meet the press". senate armed services chairman carl levin and jeff session. at 1:00, "this week." former new mexico democratic governor and energy secretary bill richardson.
michael chertoff, and the former libyan ambassador and the french ambassador to the united stations. nations. jack reed, south carolina republican senator lindsey graham and senator rand paul. "state of the union," arizona republican john mccain, connecticut independent senator joe lieberman, and two retired military officers. finally at 4:00 p.m., it is "face the nation." bob schaefer talks with the chairmen of the joint chiefs, admiral mike mullen, senator dick lugar and secretary chu, and their ranking member of the house energy committee. begin athose reairs
noon with "meet the press", 1:00, but abc's "this week" cnn's "state of the union of," at 3:00 p.m.. you can listen to them all on c- span radio on 90.1 in washington and channel 132 on xm satellite radio. or go online to cspanradio.org. >> katherine wilde heads a ew yorkit cente rin ner in n ew city. >> new york city was pulled into the global economy, became america's gateway and has prospered ever sent. >> what the rest of the interview tonight on c-span's "q&a."
this weekend on american history to be on c-span 3, the organization of american historians meeting from houston with authors offering insight as to why the south seceded from the union. the rise and fall of enron. and remembering the triangle shirt waist fire. and the subsequent reforms and safety in labor. for the complete weekend schedule, go to c- span.org/history. >> the president and the administration believes that we will have to look closely at the events in japan, before we have to apply whatever lessons can be and will be learned. >> the energy secretary and the chairmen of the nuclear regulatory commission testified
on the energy department's fiscal budget and nuclear power safety issues following the earthquake and tsunami enter japan. watched a complete hearing on the c-span video library. it is washington your way. "washington journal" continues. host: our sunday roundtable. we want to welcome david brody, the cbn is chief political correspondent. and michael shear with "the new york times". let me begin with the news of the day. what is the objective? guest: that is the big question. there is a short-term and long- term objective. one will be more difficult than the other. the short term objective is apparently to prevent a kind of humanitarian crisis in the country. there was some concern in europe that they would pressure the united states to join in, which
was -- is colonel gaddafi going to attack and kill thousands of his own people? the humanitarian pressure to do something to stop that. the broader question is a, the united states and the rest of the western world have called for colonel gaddafi to l eave. the question really is and how do the two goals of both, that president obama express, which is not to get involved in of ground campaign, not to participate in and extended war, a matter of days, not weeks or months, how does that square with the idea of trying to get mr. gaddafi out of power if he does not want to go? these kinds of air campaigns can go on for a long time. host: as we heard from admiral staying and, gaddafi
power is a real possibility. guest: who are these folks, the rebels, exactly? in terms of objectives, you are talking from the administration's standpoint, did in, get out, and move on. host: let me have you listened to part of what's gaddafi said a couple of hours ago at 5:00 eastern time as he took aim at u.s. and western troops using force on libya. this has been primarily air strikes. here is gaddafi. >> you are the enemies. you are criminals. your people are -- everywhere in europe and in america, your people do not agree with it. the whole world, the whole
people are against you. your government, your regime will go down. host: we've seen the pictures as well from libya. how is this playing out and the arab world, michael shear? guest: what has really been interesting, this assault launched on the eighth anniversary of the invasion of iraq, today. the difference, though, and what is striking about this is that there is support for this among parts of the arab world. the arab league actually voted several days ago to encourage the creation of a no-fly zone. there are ostensibly some arab partners and this, although, what we have seen and just the isrs after the assault, that we do not see a lot of evidence of that participation. you see french and american
bombers. you do not see any evidence of the participation of the arab countries in the bombing. clearly, gaddafi had not only become uprise again to the western world, but he was a pariah in the arab world. host: some of our viewers are saying why not yemen? why libya? guest: what you see from this administration is that there is a place where they need to fight their battles. but they said -- there is a political consequence to all of this. they need to go to places where there is a positive political upside. with bahrain, it relates to saudi arabia. it is a much tougher place.
guest: there is a pragmatism played out in president obama's foreign-policy, where they pick and choose but not in an arbitrary political way, but also a cold calculation about where the united states interest are best aligned with the protesters, the rebels, the opposition, and where they are best aligned with the folks in power. guest: the bigger issue for the president is how this is playing here in washington. you have the anti-war caucus that has come out against the president on this. as they did with george bush. and then you have the conservatives talking about dithering, and passivity, new gingrich and other of these candidates. you are getting it from both sides. this seems to be much more of a political problem for him back
home. host: walt bachus on your daily blog. sarah palin is in india this weekend. guest: if you remember during the 2008 campaign, sarah palin was criticized for lack of the world view, her knowledge about the world and what goes on outside. since then she has taken a couple of these trips abroad, which it is anyone's guess how they are intended to repair that image. it seems likely that she does for president, she will need to have a better perspective on the world and a sense of that. she has gone to india. it is actually a paid speech, she is a member of the washington speakers bureau, and they arrange this for her. she will be going after the speech to israel, which is not a
paid gate. she will be assessing the situation from israel and having dinner with prime minister netanyahu there as well as other israeli officials. and then come back to the united states. if he does run for president, and it is anyone's guess, this will be an important piece in getting folks a sense that she has a better knowledge and grasp of the world. host: david brody, have you sat down with mitt romney or sarah palin? guest: sarah palin i have. mitt romney, not yet, but there isn't a wall aspect with him. you can see him in a couple places, but this is a calculated decision. clearly they need to figure out with health care what the exact target will be. as a release to sarah palin, i did sit down with her about a month ago. we talked about egypt where she made some news as to what she
would do over there, or her assessment of the situation. we will see. there are a lot more interviews to come hopefully. host: you sat down with tim pawlenty. >> in evangelical christians, that is our personal faith perspective and journey. i am happy to share that, because people take the measure of you in terms of running for office or any other thing. they want to know what your values system is based on, who argue, what do you believe, why do you believe that? and our faith in forms what we put our priorities for, what we turn to for help, what we believe in terms of our values. it is a measure of the person and part of how they think and what they buy you and what they believe. host: based on this interview, who was the targeted audience? guest: evangelicals clearly what
tim pawlenty. he is already making a major player. everyone who says that the 2012 race has not gotten under way, it has gotten underway, no doubt about it. he is playing to the evangelical audience and gingrich will. how can he play with three marriages, but there is a resume for him as well, as well as it relates to sharia law and wahhabi as some and how radical islam plays within the evangelical orbit. even the evangelicals on the ground in an iowa and south carolina, it is not just abortion and moral fiscal crisis issues. radical islam plays a key component in how evangelical see the world and the candidates. guest: i agree with that. the other person i would add would be mike huckabee, if he
decides to run, who has his own issues with conservatives on a financial and fiscal side. but when it comes to the evangelical crowd in iowa, he is a proven vote-getter. host: a story that you wrote last week, michael bennet joined by 32 republicans and 32 democrats, and what is their message? guest: do something about the debt. their message is do not run away from the entitlement programs just because they are top. the current debate that you talked about in your last segment is on the current fiscal year budget. that will and that some point. it has to. sometime this year, they will have to confront the question of getting control of the nation's soaring debt. the thing that will force them
to confront them is raising the debt ceiling, which a lot of conservatives and tea party members opposed. what the 64 senators are hoping is that they can use the pressure from that vote, that potential vote, to squeeze everyone in this debate to, ok, we will raise the debt ceiling but only if there are long term fix is on these big problems. host: you're talking about medicare, medicaid, social security, and taxes. guest: there are three democrats and republicans at the core of that larger group. they had been negotiating privately. the hope is that -- it had built sought the president's tax commission -- but if you can find a comprehensive agreement on those things, how to control the soaring cost of health care, how you can adjust social
security to keep it solvent for longer, and then how you can make some changes to the tax code, do all that together and it helps the long-term fiscal crisis but the country, and then if everyone can see you are confronting those things, then people will be worked well into confronting. host: let me turn to politics. a defining issue for obama is a $250,000 limit. guest: that will be a micro issue in this macro lens. and the macro lens is leadership. you sing gingrich talk about this, the spectator in chief comment. the president, according to many of these candidates, it is developing a resin made -- resume of sitting on the sidelines. whether libya, where he did not
act fast enough, you can go down the line. entitlement reform. republicans will come out and early april with their budget. ready and willing to take the political hit for it. they say. guest: chris christie has exactly the same message, disappointment in the president, saying he has not stood up to confront these problems. recently,istie's said you wonder at this point in american history if the political cost may not be as bad as a lot of people think when it comes to touching the third rail of entitlements. or some of these other economic issues, because of the situation we face. host: is debt commission suggesting that for terminates goes up to 69. it is not an immediate, but over 5 to 10 years. guest: there are all sorts of ways in which you might adjust
these things and have less of an impact in the short run but morgan impact in the long run. host: michael shear and david brody. tony is joining us from denver. welcome. caller: my question is around foreign-policy. when obama ran, he really ran on diplomacy and the need for coalition when you are using force. now here we are three years later. after being elected, his first major speech is in egypt and he speaks to the young people and their aspirations for democracy, and that he accepts the nobel prize, and talks about using force with coalitions. now it is three years later, it looks like he is just what telling how he ran when he ran for president. using power when needed, but
with support in coalition, maybe like president bush i, and a lot like feedback on that. is he not filling how he ran? host: one comment from our bureau. -- and viewers. guest: he is absolutely right. this is what the president ran on in 2008. this is his governing philosophy. we are starting to see this. in essence, president obama is a constitutional law professor at harvard. he is in a harvard or yale classroom, pick your id league school classroom. he is having an interesting debate about all this. on the one hand, on the other hand, and look of what happened in afghanistan. that went on because there were different viewpoints in the room.
and republicans will deem him on this issue and they have. guest: the white house will argue that the president has done what he said. he is pulling out of iraq, slowly and responsibly, and he has reached its focus on afghanistan, which he said was the war that america needed to be engaged in. and now interestingly on this libya situation, there was a real tension and back-and-forth within the administration. you had secretary of state hillary clinton, samantha power is, susan rice, all on this side of intervening for humanitarian reasons. on the other side, robert gates, the secretary of defense, the national security advisor, all worried about drawing in this something that will go on for a long time, difficult to get out of.
secretary of state clinton won out this time. but as we have said before, it is a case by case basis. it is a pragmatic approach this as we do not have to do things in a cookie cutter way. we will confront these things as we get to them. host: newt gingrich said that nicholas sarkozy was not sidetracked by his brackets. this is the president giving his picks for the n.c.a.a.. the president is not doing too badly. guest: no, he is doing quite well. he obviously loves basketball. of the 32 games, the first 32, he got 29 right. he only missed three. i think he missed -- i cannot remember which ones he messed. louisville over morehead state,
-- igan state over ucla = host: butler was a surprising pick. guest: he has picked kansas to go all the way. it is conceivable that the way things happen -- stand, that he has near perfect as most people get. host: what about the criticism for spending time on doing this? guest: this is one of those perennial issues that comes up in presidencies. almost every democrat or republican when presidents try to achieve a balance when -- between light things like a vacation or basketball picks, and at the same time handling very weighty, monumental issues, whether confronting japan or libya. it is hard to balance those. he did get some criticism from the republican national committee and others that maybe he should not have taken the
time to go on espn announce his picks just as the nuclear crisis in japan was unfolding. the white house was saying that he can walk and chew gum at the same time. host: the president is in rio talking business. guest: i think there is not only a political issue with that, but he will get criticized for that as well. you can make the argument, and the white house makes the argument on one side, and the other side says it is important that he be in the moment of what is going on here. this all plays into a mentality out there in parts of the country, part of the heartland especially, that he is not as pro-america as other people think he is. i think that plays into all of this. you're filling out brackets and playing golf, you are in brazil
when you might be doing other things, it makes people wonder. when you go to the voting booth, you do not vote on public policy issues as much as you do with your heart and with that emotional connection. it worked for president obama in 2008. we will see what happens in 2012. host: just asking that question. why are we discussing the president choosing basketball winners and losers? michael shear and david brody. good morning. welcome to the conversation. caller: last night i tried to get a campaign to have name tags for you moderator's. host: it is not about us, it is about you and our guest. caller: i like to praise george
w. bush. the poor maligned old guy remove dead dictator, a tyrant who killed more people and who was much worse than this clown, this character gaddafi, and i was like to talk about the big picture going on in the middle east right now. it seems like in country after country after country, the people are rising up and they are just demanding that they have a voice in their own government, to choose their leaders, to choose their policies, and it is like blossoming all over the middle east, like flowers. i wanted to ask, where did the seed for these flowers come from? it came from a picture that was circulated all around the world
of a little old iraqi woman who had heard a thinker, her purple thing your pointed in the air. she get the chance to choose her ruler and the rules under which she is governed. and that was old george w. host: thanks for the call. do not be a stranger. guest: don makes a pretty good point. what a lot of conservatives feel in this country, if you blindfolding yourself and listen to barack obama and george w. bush, they are in essence saying quite a bit of the same thing as it relates to freedom around the world, and that people have the desire to be free. towards the bush -- i am not suggesting that barack obama and george bush see the world the same way, but the caller makes a good point in that george bush possible legacy and the future
of how folks may see this president may change quite a bit depending on what goes on in the middle east. this is where it all started as it relates to iraq and how that happened. host: we heard guested vary from secretary of state clinton after her meeting with sarkozy. she said that this was not a u.s.-led effort. french missiles and british missiles and u.s. tomahawk missiles over line. -- overnight. guest: it is the queasiness inside the american establishment, inside the white house, the pentagon, that they do not want to be drawn into a long battle. it also signals the worry that the united states does not want to be perceived, despite the fact that we talked about that arab nations have supported the no-fly zone, there is a real worried that they do not want
united states proceed as attacking again another arab country. to the caller's point, the george bush alumni would definitely and are definitely arguing that the seeds of the revolution, the seeds of all the countries embracing democracy really was the invasion of iraq and the overthrow of saddam hussein, which was part of the argument that george w. bush made as justifying that effort. you plant the seeds of democracy in a region that do not have it. host: michael shear and david brody. caller: i want to say that president obama toomey is doing what he said he was going to be doing.
75% of what he said he has done. the only thing i do not get are all these lies. people forget things. president bush went over into iraq for weapons of mass destruction. then he changed it to the people. you cannot have it both ways. you just cannot have it both ways. mr. obama is doing what he is supposed to be doing -- a leading this country. i am sick and tired of people always -- if they did not go over there, that would be saying he is slow. he is not doing the right thing. host: thanks for the call. as the new york tabloids can only do that -- and from the new york post, strike one. guest: i read them daily growing up in new york. always an interesting headline.
your post headline is interesting. we do not know where strike to end strike 3 will come, when and where. it is dangerous for the president of the united states to come out and say we will not use ground troops in libya. your boxing yourself in that that point, or you will have to explain your way out. that can be publicly -- politically problematic for this president. to say that early could come back to haunt him. host: we heard that buys president biden was in touch with afghan leaders over the weekend to check-in. no specifics. guest: they never do. host: they wanted to make sure that there were no more civilian deaths in afghanistan. guest: afghanistan has for the last several weeks taken a back seat in the news. but it remains the big foreign-
policy and military question mark hanging over the president. the iraq situation is proceeding on the lines of a bipartisan sense. but in afghanistan, there is increasing concern among some of the left especially that the war is going on, dragging on, but no serious improvement, and that some of the deadlines that the president had said are going to come and go without any real improvement. guest: the 2012 election, this will be a point of contention. haley barbour has already come out and talked about his concern about afghanistan. it will put all these republican candidates on the spot as to where are you exactly? are we in, are we all, or just fiddling around? guest: it is a not place for
some of these republicans because they have traditionally supported these interventions. in the past, when they have questioned the effort there, there has been flowback from their base. how they criticize the president when at the same time stay on the right side of their base? host: haley barbour definitely in? guest: the percentages are relatively high. host: silver springs, maryland. caller: my question is addressed to the person who had the privilege to interview sarah palin. is he at liberty to tell us who or what group is responsible for managing, coaching, training, and speechwriting for sarah palin? guest: she has a close circle of
advisers. that is the best way to term it. i do not think that is one concrete answer. guest: other than talk, her husband. -- todd, her husband. guest: she has some advisers based in washington around the country. she relies on certain people, but ultimately sarah palin is from alaska. you have an independent mind and an independent spirit. i think we have seen that in quite a few cases as relates to some of her comments on some of these issues. host: the impact of japan here in you -- here in the united states. michael shear, we will have a conversation with the chair of the nuclear regulatory commission, gregory jaczko.
but a report will come out on how sick the u.s. sites are. what are the lessons from japan? guest: japan is just an awful story. i think what we will see as the immediate crisis fades, politically in the united states is a real renewing of the debate over nuclear power, and whether or not as had been the direction that the country was headed just before this, we should expand and build new nuclear facilities, and i did review of the comments that the 2012 likely candidates made on nuclear power. there were all incredibly enthusiastic about nuclear power, never been safer, mitt romney in his book that he released last year talked about how he does not understand the critics of nuclear power. it is the safest thing ever and
we should embrace it. and frankly president obama was in that place as well, saying in a speech on energy last year that we needed to do more with nuclear power. one wonders whether the japan situation scrambles that political calculation. i do think that at the politicians try to balance this question of reliance on oil from the middle east versus the danger is so obvious in nuclear power, that will be top. host: three mile island is still operational, providing electricity for 800,000 residents. the japanese plant will have to be scrapped. 90 miles away, food has been contaminated. guest: this story will be in the headlines throughout the 2012 presidential campaign. what you will see as it relates to nuclear-powered, it will be
broader. a lot of the candidates start to tie to a larger energy issue. where we are getting our oil, it may not be drill, baby drill, but they will talk about alternate forms of energy as it relates to what we need to do to make sure we are not dependent on foreign oil. that is where this is -- at least they will try to pick it and turn it that way. host: gregory jaczko making his only son the appearance on "newsmakers." his the chair of the nuclear regulatory commission. that is live after "washington journal" this morning. stay with us. georgia, a good morning. caller: why do we feel that it is ok for former colonial powers, not no rigid so much the united states, but we got drawn
into it, to go when it and almost like in dade libya to protect the human beings, when there is a civil war going on just like what was going on in egypt, tunisia -- why are we not invading the rain? they are killing their people in bahrain and saudi arabia. of jerry s is not too far behind. -- algeria is not too far behind. comparing gaddafi with saddam hussein to give as an excuse to go in and kill people, i do not understand that. guest: i think she raises the big head scratching point that people have been talking about. they have been arguing about it inside the administration. how do you justify it? if you look back in history to win the -- rwanda is the prime
example, when foreign powers did not get involved. president bill clinton at the time said that was one of the biggest regrets of his presidency, that they knew there was a humanitarian crisis going on, they knew that folks were being slaughtered, and the western powers stood by because what the same calculations it was not in their direct interests. how you balance that off against the questions that the caller raises? they are quite valid. how do you make those distinctions and to what extent can you decide that one country is worth spending this kind of military intervention and others are not? guest: relating to bahrain, there needs to be a reality check. the saudis are involved in this. they are very important ally for the united states. it is complicated.
guest: as in everything else, it is about the details and specifics. adopting -- gaddafi is seen as a madman. he does not have the support of a lot of his neighbors. i am quite certain that as they went to their calculations, that played a role. guest: in a gets involved in the sunni-shiite issue. host: he pointed out npr, one of many distractions to come. the house voting last year to the fund -- defund npr. guest: what we will see is that as the budget debate unfolds, a series of these kinds of distractions is one way to put it.
slipper issues that cut across a small sliver. npr is a tiny piece of a trillion dollar budget. but it was important, one of those issues that is important for the conservative base. republicans were emboldened because of the recent scandals at npr. and so they decided to go for. they passed in the house. it is not expected to go anywhere in the senate and president obama would not senate -- sign it. guest: you had the issue of defunding plan. head in this cr. you liken it to the abortion debate in health care reform. they got sidetracked on that, i would not say, but people who believe that plan parent could should not be funded by the
federal government, it is not a side issue at all. it is being major lobbied on capitol hill. it will be a test of john boehner here. how much does he not want to go through the shutdown compared to what he wants to stick with the pro-life on this. host: he continues to say he wants the open rule which would allow anything to come to the house floor. guest: he is always had the mentality of letting the will of the house do its thing. if he sees the house republican freshmen were many of the pro- life congressman, however the house starts to see how they want to go on this issue, i think he will allow that to happen based on the fact that this is the governing philosophy. host: from twitter -- guest: it will be interesting to see how energy place up. if the president effectively
declared a full debate over energy policy over cap and trade being dead at the last of last year, after the routing his party took, but you will see more activity on capitol hill, not on cap and trade, but whether or not there is something that can be done in a bipartisan way to encourage alternative energy. the question of decreasing their reliance on foreign oil, and all of this stuff going on in japan will increase that. host: 70 quick to respond. -- cindy quick to respond. guest: libya is one more event on the president's plate to the point where he may -- not necessarily take his eye off the ball, but first question was, if he spends more time here, and
rightly so, there could be some backlash as to why this president is not spending more time focusing on the economy and jobs. and i believe the republicans will be ready for that. guest: that has been the pattern for the past two years. just when the president and this white house gets a message that they feel is working, world events, whether oil spills or crises in japan or elsewhere, there really has been a series of events that have knocked them off message. host: los angeles, good morning. caller: president obama has already said we are taking the back seat in libya. they are against the administration. president bush attacked the country for near reason. they call them the worst president in modern times.
with that president's chief on their wives, we have presidents that had slaves, but that did not do anything about the civil war. you need to get off of his back. that is all i need to say. guest: for several years out, there are still people as this caller is evidence of, who oppose what bush did during his administration. i do not think that that will change. host: lee joins us from latin roots. you have david brody and michael shear. caller: i hear him saying something about what obama run on, and the way i got it was that he was going to spread the wealth around.
when he got his cap and trade in, he was going to break all the coal companies. i never have heard anything like that in the media when it was happening. you guys had your heads in the sand, i guess. i do not know, like sean hannity said. we just cannot hear from you. they now come up when we are all in this mess, and i hear him saying, well, he inherited a mess. he did not inherit the mess. he and his cronies, the unions
and acorn and barney frank and chris dodd, they're the ones that cause the mess. host: thank you for your call. do you want to react? guest: an interesting observation as to spreading the wealth. the president did talk about his philosophy, his economic philosophy, which is let's spread the wealth. here we are in wisconsin, which you can argue certain things about scott walker, but one thing they are saying, it is not fair what these union members are getting as a relates to pensions and benefits and salary and all of that. and if you look at this way, they want to spread the wealth. here is predicated obama saying, well, no, i do not want a spread the wealth there. very interesting about talking about spreading the wealth, but at the same time when scott
walker and others want to do that, the president is not buying into that spread the wealth philosophy. guest: that came from ohio and joe the plumber. that became the phrase of the moment. one of the things the president has done in the last few months, he has shifted on some of this rhetoric. the biggest evidence of that shift was in the lame duck session of congress when he acknowledged and compromised on the task cuts for the wealthy. it had been part of that broader rhetoric that he argued all to the campaign and for the first couple of years of the administration. you could not extend these tax cuts to the wealthy. he finally compromised on that. i think the campaign we are about to cover will focus on
that issue as part of the broader economic debate. host: the front page of a pittsburgh newspaper, haley barbour testing the waters in iowa. he gave a speech last night in the quad cities. it is available on our website, c-span.org, and our last caller is from new hampshire. mark choices from northfield. are you seeing any republican presidential candidates in northfield? caller: there definitely appear. my comments and questions are this -- alice the environment anymore safer in obama's highs drilling oil off the gulf of mexico, and when president bush went to the war, he had a congressional act. with this campaign, we had a you in act.
-- a un act. guest: the anti-work caucus has brought that up. you will see that drumbeat even louder. host: we talked about that with this kucinich and afghanistan. guest: there was a lot of you in action before the 2003 iraq invasion as well. i am not sure whether the idea that this is a un-led initiative, there was a lot of that in 2003 as well. host: this story that you posted, how does that change how you write stories for this campaign and how you post immediately on the web? guest: it is faster. the speed is different.
the front page of the new york times is very important and it will be very important. but recently the conversation of politics and about election plays out on the internet. that is where people are throughout the course of the day. it is definitely meant that stories we used to sit back and are chair and let -- see how that developed over days even, now we are very much try to attack those stories in the moment. guest: there is a dangerous policy to use the immediacy of what we're doing, in terms of fact checking. i would say how does that affect me -- less sleep probably. but beyond that, there are two different world out there. the mainstream media/television world of the nightly newscast, fox, msnbc, and then there is the bair role world.
. viral world. that is a big difference. guest: in 2006, we were at the "washington post." wheat posted the macaca video on george allen. that almost looks quaint these days, because of a viral quality of everything has threatened to overwhelm a more considered conversation. host: you have all the likely republican candidate. tonight herman cain is serious about running for president. guest: i interviewed him about a month ago. we just posted some of that at the blog, and here comes the pitch.
ralph reed told me in iowa and at that faith in freedom of been, if mike huckabee and sarah palin do not get in, watch for herman cain or rick santorum to break off right tackle and do damage in iowa. herman cain is beloved by the tea party movement in this country. go to a tea party rally, you will see signs in you will see herman cain. guest: ron paul was one of these characters and the last campaign. i just sat down with buddy roemer. he will have an interesting tweak on the candidates as well. watch for some of these lesser- known folks. guest: it will be watching the debates. he will command attention. host: michael shear of the "new york times," and david brody of the christian broadcasting network.
thank you for being with us. some programming notes -- we will have that interview with herman cain, likely presidential candidate, one "road to the white house." coming up on "newsmakers," gregory jaczko, the chair of the nuclear regulatory commission, will be with this. coming up in a couple of minutes, daniel weiss talking about energy policy here in the u.s. and lessons learned from japan. first, as we always do, a look at the week's events from the leading politick rigid political cartoonist from around the country. -- the leading the political cartoonists from around the country.
>> ishmael reed is on"in depth." he has written several books. join our three-hour conversation with your phone calls, e-mails, and tweets april 3 on c-span2 what previous programs at our website where you can find the entire schedule. >> "washington journal" continues. host: we want to welcome back to c-span daniel weiss, a senior fellow of climate change at the center for american progress. as you watched the events unfold after the earthquake in japan, what the lessons for america's
energy policy? guest: it is a horrible tragedy in our hearts and thoughts go out to the japanese people. we will be covering this tragedy for months to come. there are a few lessons we can learn. this is most important, we are capable of developing very complex systems to address our problems, but those complex systems can never be risk-free. they will be vulnerable to an outside events that no one anticipated as well as human error. we saw that in the bp oil disaster last year. we have seen that in the fukushima plant now. in today's paper, "new york times," officials might have waited too long before trying to address the issues. there is always those things. when we design complex systems,
we have to understand that they are not error free. host: the me read you from "in new york times," also on the website. they may have lost a valuable time. new questions are rising about whether they wasted time in the early hours of the crisis either because of complacency or because they did not want to resort to emergency measures that could potentially destroy this viable plan. authority indicate that it will have to be shut down. there is no way based on the contamination of the facility if it ever be rebuilt or restarted. guest: and then the "washington post," three mile island was hit 32 years ago and it took a decade the claim that. that accident was no where near as severe as what we see in japan. it's also important that we have to think long and hard about how
we design the next generation of nuclear power plants, look at all these factors that may and may not have been looked at in the japanese plant. host: this is a picture of middletown, pa. back in the sight of that accident. yet today it provides power for residents of maryland and pennsylvania. guest: nuclear energy will provide energy for some time to come. at the same time, wall street investors are very reluctant, even both for the fukushima accident, to invested in it because of the high risk. you can invest more federal subsidies in it, and weekends or cut some of the review policies, that is the proposal the nuclear industry proposed last year. i did not think it will go far now.
host: this is an elementary school in the ukraine, the chernobyl disaster that took place in the mid-1980s. the story is called "in turn the dead zone." guest: it is unclear what the areas outside the japanese reactor will look like 10 years from now. they had the horrible earthquake, the devastating tsunami, and now the near meltdown at fukushima. who knows what it will look like? we need to think about the $10 billion that it would take to build the new plan, it might be better spent on technologies that could be built more cheaply and more safely. host: the me ask you about the construction. wall street is not supportive of these measures. would congress provide the seed money to build these multibillion-dollar facilities? is there support and financial
aid to do this? guest: even before the nuclear accident, there was not a lot of support from wall street. we have ample subsidies to build them, and yet they were established seven years ago. only one set of new reactors has been accepted for the subsidies. the others are pending. they face heavy trouble getting the money together. one of the potential reactors in san antonio has been put on the back burner because the city would invest in it, but decided it was too expensive. we have the power plant here outside of d.c. and maryland, constellated energy pulled out because of the expense. that was a problem before this and this will only exacerbate it. host: i have all the articles that you have been talking about. how safe are nuclear plants
near us? that is posed in the "baltimore sun." guest: i was doing better in my picks than the president in the n.c.a.a. but he is right to call for a review of all 104 u.s. nuclear power plants. they are probably fairly safe, but there is always the unanticipated event and there is always human error. we are looking at complex systems with high impact accidents, that can always be a challenge. looking at investing the $10 billion in other technologies to produce electricity, that is something we need to do more of. host: let's put some more information on the table in our conversation with daniel weiss. there are 104 nuclear reactors in the u.s. accounting for 31 states, providing 20% of
america's electricity. the oldest is oyster creek in new jersey, built in april 1969. there is an $8.3 billion loan for two new reactors to be built in the state of georgia. the largest percentage of electricity being nuclear is in vermont, new jersey, connecticut, south carolina, illinois, new hampshire, and virginia. the newest plant in 1996, watts bar 1 in tennessee. then goes back to texas. it has been 15 years since we have seen in new nuclear plant. guest: they are very expensive and take a long time to build. utilitytry's largest owns at least 17 reactors. an official gave a speech who
said that the future of electricity is going to be in natural gas. not nuclear power. one may agree or disagree, but that is the view of an insider who operates a number of plants, in fact, the three mile island plant today. host: president obama talking about the role of nuclear energy in america's energy portfolio. >> here at home, nuclear power is an important part of our own energy future, along with renewable sources like wind, solar, natural gas, and clean coal. our nuclear power plants have undergone exhaustive studies and been declared safe for any number of extreme contingencies. host: daniel weiss, that was the president last thursday. where does he go from here? guest: his budget is the pathway to invest more money in energy
efficiency, which not only produces electricity needs but saves people money, and investment in solar, wind, geode thermal -- the the centralized power systems are not subject to the colossal lawyers. unfortunately the republican budget texas and the exact opposite direction. it would cut $8 billion for investment in clean energy and programs to reduce oil use, the exact opposite way we need to go. host: we're talking with daniel weiss. is website is that americanprogress.org. guest: it is a progressive think tank started by john podesta, who cochaired president obama is transition. we focus on issues like energy and global warming, economic
opportunities, education, and immigration reform. host: what role you play in the debate over energy policy? guest: we've come up with some ideas and are preparing more on how to reduce oil use. that is a key piece of our national security in reducing pollution, and protecting health and growing the economy. i do know what the scoop ourselves, but we are looking at a number of things. there are a number of things to help americans address high gasoline prices. for example, the crackdown on speculators. there is a report last week from one of the members of late futures trading commission, the government agency that oversees the oil markers, which sees speculator is driving up prices right now in the middle of the crisis of the middle east, trying to make a profit. that's crackdown with more oversight on these trades.
unfortunately, the republican budget would take about 33% of the oil cops off the beat. if the oil prices continue to rise, they had plateaued at the $100 a barrel range, but if they go to $125, or at gasoline its $4 a gallon, we should sell a small amount of oil from our strategic petroleum reserve. that will lower the price of oil. you consult $30 million, and it will be 96% full. it will help reduce prices and helped middle american and low- income families. when the price of oil goes up $10 a barrel, it shaves off two% of our economic growth. that is why we need to intervene to reduce the price of lowe, help middle american families, and keep our economy going.
host: we are talking to daniel weiss, now a senior fellow and director of climate change at the center for american progress. carroll joins us from st. louis. good morning. caller: i totally agree with the speculation thing. here we have that callaway plant, built right over the new madrid fault. the question i had was, where does all the water that they pour on the reactor, it does that go back into the pacific? what kind of effect will that have on the dishes -- fishes? guest: what is happening to the water that is poured into their reactors? it cools the fuel rods and the spent rods that are still very hot. but they are no longer useful. most of that will stay in their
reactors. but there is a possibility of runoff, since it is right next to the ocean. airborne radiation will pose as much as the flood threat to fish and wildlife as it will run off from the reactor. host: 90 miles away from the plant has already been contaminated from water. guest: >> west of the plants on land, spinach, and milk. during the late 1950's enderlein 1960's there was a concern that fallout from atmospheric nuclear testing. we did not drink milk. we drank powder milk produced before the airborne nuclear testing. there was concern about chemicals getting into the grass of the cows ate and going into the milk. there was testing of children's baby teeth that found it to be so. hopefully that will not happen again, but we know that mercury
from power plants in china make their way into the ocean and to the united states then there's no reason to think irradiation will also follow those wind patterns. host: steve on the republican line from phoenix, arizona. caller: good morning. i think we need to start drilling a lot more, get more oil, especially from alaska. we are going to be burning gas in our cars for a long time to come. to not go drilling because if we go bankrupt, it will not matter how good the environment is if we do not own it. do you know what i am saying? we have to really go in and start drilling. alaska is up there wide-open waiting for us to come up there and start drilling, you know? we have to worry about the environmental little bit less and worry about our spreadsheet a little bit more.
that is my comment. right were the caller's is that we're roy to burning gasoline in cars for a long time to come. a more effective strategy is to reduce the amount of gasoline we burn in cars and shift to electricity as president obama wants to do. he wants to put 1 million electric vehicles on the road by 2015. a senior official by the department of energy justified in the senate that we would not see the peak production of oil from alaska for 20 years. then it would not lower the price by any more than 1%. the reality is that we use a 25% of the world oil, 2% of the oil resources, and it would be impossible for us to drill our way out of this problem. we have huge demand, little supply. host: 1 verve years is saying is that clean, renewable energy is the only way for a sustainable future. define clean and grenoble.
guest: to me, and that is in the does not require energy source that is mine or drill. at the wind, power, solar, geothermal energy, tidal energy and that is thinking that they can produce a lot of the coastal energy. there are cleaner energy sources than coal. one of the cleanest as natural gas. anywhere between 25% 10-50% cleaner than coal. it does not produce mercury, arsenic, or other chemicals. i think we will see the use of natural gas as a breach what we are building up our clean energy infrastructure with solar, wind, and geothermal. host: president carter went to the library and called this the
moral equivalent of war. there's a piece this past week in "the new york times," saying that on this issue that jimmy carter was right. guest: he was right, but he did not sell it right by putting on a cardigan sweater he was telling people that you're going to have to sacrifice, the less comfortable. give up things that you want. the reality is that we have technologies available to make our houses 50% more energy efficient without sacrificing, without having to wear a cardigan sweater in the march to this year to keep the thermostat at 60. it is possible to do those things. it is not a technological problem or an economic problem. it is market failure and political will. host: for nixon for bush, there has not been a clear, consistent energy policy that has been long range. guest: that is right. president obama has tried to change that.
he has been somewhat successful. the american recovery and reinvestment act will ultimately invest $90 billion in clean energy. for example, weast have two advanced battery company's or facilities to make advanced batteries for vehicles. now we have over 20. hopefully, we will develop the advanced batteries that were power of the cars across the world. in some of us buying them in from japan or china, we will sell it to them. that is one of the things that is happening in the president's energy plan. a good piece of it gotshal by congress last session and other republican budget would take even further backwards by this investing. when reagan became president, he took the sonar powell's -- panels of the white house that to make carter had installed. host: from philadelphia on the independent line. welcome to the conversation.
caller: thank you. good morning. the gentleman touched on what i wanted to speak about. it is amazing that our politicians are so afraid of telling americans to grow up and stop being so selfish. we're the most wasteful people in the world. that is why we have an energy crisis. we have lights on all night long. people drive a five blocks to go to the store. but do need to step in and say, "you need to grow up, people." with the teller children they cannot have to want all the time. -- we needed to tell our children they cannot have what they want. this is killing us. that is all i really had to say. guest: the caller is right in that there are some people who are opposed to efficiency measures. for example, rush limbaugh is attacking a law that would require liable to be more efficient and use less energy,
last lager, and save consumers money. that is just silly. the part is not that people are selfish. but there's the tragedy of the commons. everyone shares this, and. . when added up collectively, these decisions have an impact on everyone in the way that the individual does not release the himself or herself. one thing to help us get around a market failure is providing government's incentives to urge people to do things that are in their long-term and short-term interest. for example, we have a program now that will help people by the first electric vehicle. the chevy volt or the nissan leap. we have incentives to help bring down the cost of little bit and help people buy them. then we will get enough of them on the road and pretty soon we will not need incentives the as ever on the sea with a great idea they are in the cost of production will come down as well.
host: the only way we will ever move away from gas card cars would be if gas prices get and stay high. but in hawaii this past week, the average price was above $4 per gallon, and first, never to have seen that. in new york and here in washington, d.c., and i saw one gas station at $4.69 per gallon for regular unleaded. guest: i think they bring in caviar with your gasoline. it is usually one of the highest in the area. the reality is that higher gasoline prices will have a real impact on middle america and low-income families. just like in the previous year, they were paying 13% more for gasoline than they were in the year before that, but wages are stagnant. higher gasoline prices hover real cost. what we need to do is develop accessible alternatives. there are three things. cars that go much further on a gallon of gas, which will start
this fall in the car showrooms. new cars will have to get better fuel economy. by 2016, the average car will be getting 35.5 mpg, which is about a one-third increase from where we are today. we-alternative fuels like advanced by a fuel -- we need alternative fuels like advanced biofuels. we need to get the alternative to driving in their car like buses, trains, and let's make sure that people live close to where they work or have alternatives. all of these things will really be the way to reduce oil without the huge horrible impact that higher gasoline prices that would have on every day americans. host: from our republican line in claremont california. caller: good to talk to you again. i cannot believe some of the stuff you are saying.
nuclear energy. there has never been one of the death caused from nuclear energy. from three mile island, you could talk about chernobyl. and in america, we are safe and follow rules. you have been trained by too many union teachers that are giving a distorted view of reality whether it is global warming or that we should not be using coal. that carbon dioxide is killing us when i inhale or exhaled. give me a break. if you want to go and attack something that is dangerous. look at the death caused by homosexuality and aids. are you going to stand there and tell me you're going to attack them? no. that is right at your mainstream base of your party. he wants to take money from anybody, distort their mind so that they cannot take it, and give us the crop that we have.
we have been a potential president to is any factual, not eve, does not know how to do anything. they got hillary clinton has the cojones to go and lead foreign policy. host: let's bring this back to energy policy. what needs to be done? caller: the financial regulations that are placed upon all of the investments of are caused by the epa and rules. they need to alleviate that. if they were just cancel the epa programs, allow the drilling to continue in the gulf and alaskan. allow drilling off the coast of an california so right where the nuclear waste would go into the gulf stream. they can do all of those things and it would help the country. host: should there be any in our mental standards with regard to drilling?
-- should there be any environmental standards? caller: we are we passed the point of managing the smog. we are at the extreme now. guest: i appreciate the collar getting up early to call in from california. maybe that has made him a little bit cranky. reason why los angeles is cleaner now is because of government rules. it was not a free-market society that decided that we would start cleaning now because it is way too small be in los angeles. in fact, it was government action required companies to develop the catalytic converter to make cars significantly cleaner. that is why los angeles is much less smoggy than it was 40 years ago. what is interesting is that we talk a little bit about facts. the head of the energy information administration which oversees all the data collection for the department of energy just testified last week in congress that we will never have
enough oil to significantly lower its price. i will read a quote from him. "we do not project oil to have a larger part of prices given the globally integrated nature of the world oil market. that is from the energy administration. we used 25% of the world oil in of 2% of the reserves. we will never be able to affect prices by supply. it can on their behalf and on demand. lastly, the comments about global warming. no one is saying the bridge in carbon dioxide that will cause you to expire immediately. however, the national academy of sciences this survey last year and found that of all the papers written about global warming, 96% of the peer reviewed papers all pointed in one direction, global warming is real, the effects are being
seen, and it is caused predominantly by human activity. when the impact, hotter days, leads to more smog which leads to more asthma attacks which leads to promontory issues. -- paul the tory issues. we can get our information from right-wing radio hosts. the caller is mistaken in that there is global scientific evidence that global warming is not real. it will affect human health. daniel weiss is a senior fellow for the center at american progress. you touched on this earlier with regards to the solar panels on the white house. from twitter, "i'm not hearing anything about solar fuel." guest: the first concentrated solar thermal plant is under construction right now, i believe, in nevada.
it concentrates sunlight on the one place using mirrors and it warms up oil or some sort of saline solution that is used to than generate electricity. that is a kind of solar electricity that can be effective even when the sun is not shining because the heat and energy is stored. i do not know that is what they're mentioning, but those first plants are under way here and there are some like this in europe. host: sarasota, fla., on the democratic line. caller: i would consider using ethanol to replace 85% of our gasoline in the passenger cars. it can be derived from two renewable energy sources like biomass. the amount of energy that you get in using biomass to produce ethanol is substantially larger. second, renewable energy sources and artur dollars
million during the carter in administration and this ocean thermal energy research. it ran for four months off of hawaii and produced the exact amount of energy that had been calculated. that energy in can be years with water that is produced to generate oxygen and hydrogen in can been combined with cold and can be converted from coal to ethanol without innovating one molecule for carbon dioxide in producing the ethanol cheaper than any other process. host: think you for the call. guest: was a call for using ethanol is a fuel additive in the 90's in order to reduce the burning of fuel. the production technology back then ended up breaking and contaminating ground water. groundwater is one half of all
americans rely on for drinking water. it has a future of reconfigured out a way to make it in the way that does not contaminate groundwater. host: more generally, but on our twitter, "mr. weiss, do know how my small towns are using windmills for their electricity ?" guest: i do not have a number of communities, but it is the fastest growing type of electricity. in the last two years, we had enough electricity to power hundreds of thousands of homes. i think a real interesting expansion of that is going to be along the east coast where we have the tape wind project which is finally getting off the ground off the cape of massachusetts but also wrote off the coast of massachusetts and delaware. that has real potential. some of our european allies are getting a major percentage of their electricity from wind
power generated off the coasts. host: our next call is richard from vermont. good morning. caller: excuse me. i was curious about what the rationale of reagan was for taking the panel's down off of the white house. also, what effect does the oil subsidies for the oil companies how much effect would that have if it were put into something like when our backs and thank you. president guest: reagan talks administration move the it solar panel as an ideological move -- ragan's administration removed the solar panels as an ideological move. and was an important symbol. the white house is one of the most visible platforms in america. president carter putting the solar panels up was a very important sign about where we wanted to go.
president reagan taking them off was a sign about where he wanted to go which was more of the same. as you know, the home -- the obama administration has put solar panels back up on the roof. turning to oil subsidies from a right now we spend about $3.50 billion to subsidize big oil companies. that is a waste of money given that the big five oil companies over the last decade made over $1 trillion in profit. that report $5 billion could be invested in things like making homes much more energy efficient. treated incentives for cars, helping people riding buses and trains and making transit more affordable and accessible would be much better use of that money then to give money to exxonmobil and bp which have made billions of billions of dollars in profits in the last 10 years. that is something that president obama has proposed, but interestingly in the house, they
had a vote on it to both the subsidies alive even though they are cutting money for education, transit, and other things like that that people really value. they want to make sure that exxon and bp have those subsidies. host: our last call from akko valley, tennessee, with daniel weiss from the center for american progress. good morning. caller: when obama took office, gasoline was up $1.55. look where it is now. there's an article the first of the month about the epa mission creep in. the in burma the pollution has been reduced by 60 and 70% and now they are into the social justice agenda. we were warned two years ago by some when europe the university of tennessee that obama was going to use the epa to get his
cap and trade or controlling tax, which what is coming and it would be the largest tax increase. well, look at how much it has cost is already in gasoline. right here in this little town where i live, the have already laid off 155 coal miners. now, you can say whatever you want, but until obama on starts going around with his solar panels or whatever it is that he wants, we need energy. you cannot cut out nuclear, coal, gas, and everything and expect people to live any kind of a normal life. host: going back to your earlier point. what was gas prices in january 2009? caller: $1.55. host: that seems relatively low. i don not recall it dropping that much. guest: we have the highest will
then gas prices ever before in the president george of the bush. in july 2008, oil was $147 per barrel and that was a record high. after the great economic financial collapse in september 2008, on the speculation that had driven the price so high came out of the oil market which is why there was a sudden drop in oil prices down to about $35 per barrel within about six months of having the record high. president bush is the president we have experienced record high gasoline prices under. as to the caller's other point, people may be losing jobs in the coal mines, but it is not because of cap and trade. but one was never enacted. a study by the government found that 90% of the jobs lost in coal mining over the last 30 years have been due to automation. we are producing more coal than ever before with far fewer
miners. that is due to automation, not environmental regulation. last, pollution from coal has real economic and human health impact. the national academy of sciences found last year of that burning coal costs $60 billion per year mostly due to premature death, thousands of people dying early due to health care costs and lost productivity. there is a real economic toll for not acting. the president just announced earlier last week that we were going to have the first time ever rule to reduce mercury, arsenite, dioxin, and other toxic pollutants from burning coal and coal-fired power plants. that will save thousands of lives and has been endorsed by the american lung association, a pediatric doctors, all kinds of doctors and other public-health professionals. environmental regulations save lives and they save money. it is estimated the clean air
act has saved $20 for every $1 in investment. that is a rate of return that would make warren buffett proud host:. daniel weiss in the center of american progress as we discussed american energy policy. thank you for joining us. the website is americanprogress.org. after the latest on the situation in libya. mike allen, the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff appearing on nbc's "meet the press. saying one potential outcome could be that gaddafi remains in power. he told david garrett -- david gregory he thinks the doctor is more isolated than ever before and in the early stages of the attack stirred by british and french troops has been successful in isolating gaddafi. it has resulted in a no-fly zone. he has told "meet the press," that he has seen no civilian casualties. admiral mullins says he has resorted to using humans as shields right outside of
tripoli. that is some of the news this morning from the sunday morning programs. next, which dr. claudia rosett from the foundation for the defense of democracies. we will talk about the u.n.'s role in all of this. first, the c-span radio with a look at the topics and guests making up the sunday morning programs. >> at noon, c-span radio rears the five network tv talk shows beginning with nbc's "meet the press >> topics include action in libya, crisis in japan, and nuclear power. chu will be on all programs. chairman carl levin and jeff sessions. at 1:00, rhee. abc's "this week." chu, bill richardson, and former
homeland security michael chertoff. fox news sunday rears at 2:00 p.m. chris wallace talks to sit criteriumchu, reid, sen. gramm, and rand paul from kentucky. at 3:00 p.m., a state of the union. we talk with secretary chu, john mccain, joe lieberman, and the two retired officers. at 4:00 p.m., "face the nation." bob schieffer talked to the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, admiral mullen, dick lugar, and secreary chu -- secretary chu. they begin at noon with "meet the press," could this week," "fox news sunday," "face the
nation." on xm 132, as a podcast or online at c-spanradio.org. >> today on road to the white house, herman cain on whether he will run for the republican nomination. >> i have put my toe in the water. the feedback that we have gotten from people across this country, tens of thousands who are willing to volunteer. >> at 6:00 27:30 p.m. eastern and pacific. host: our topic is u.s. foreign- policy and the role of the u.n. we welcome claudia rosett, the journalist-in-residence for the
foundation for the defense of democracies. we will learn more about the foundation in the moment, but you have been riding around the u.n. -- writing about the u.n. u-turn. guest: gaddafi had become the darling of the u.n. system. he was not welcomed back as an accredited member, but it was a libyan who chaired the general assembly of the u.s. last year, 2009-2010. he was given a seat on the u.n. security council. that was 2008-2009. the viet shared it the conference in leave geneva for the anti-semitic council where ahmadinejad was the star speaker. then the, libya last year was elected by the u.n. general
assembly, then chaired by libya, to the human rights council in geneva. all of these things were incredible travesties and the u.n. to come in the rolling this back, was and doing things that never should have been done. i am still waiting for something that says they really understood why. they did this with libya but have not done it with a lot of other countries, for instance iran, which has a very influential position in the u.n. despite being under sanctions. i can see reasons for doing this, but what is the real lesson learned that the u.n.? host: you have a couple of photographs. this is one from january 2008. the u.n. secretary-general, thank you moon, with gaddafi -- ban ki moon, with gaddafi.
guest: the libyan mission to the u.n., which diplomats there, renounced the gaddafi after he began slaughtering people in broad daylight. remember that he has been killing people for years. that is how he stayed in power in libya. what has happened with the rebellion is it is now in plain view. the current libyan mission as a collection of photographs are still there. here you have him shaking hands with president obama, a friendly handshake, when gaddafi came to speak at the general assembly. then there is one here of ban ki moon with gaddafi at a barbecue in ethiopia in 2008. that was not necessary for diplomatic etiquette. they were having a good time in this. then there is another one in the
luxurious surroundings where ban ki moon hosted a meeting of the arab league which has now asked the coalition to go in and protect the civilian population of libya. gaddafi hosted a meeting of the arab league in 2010. ban ki moon flew in. the speed at which everyone has forgotten this is remarkable and a little disturbing. host: first of all, was muammar gaddafi director responsible for the downing of the pan am flight over lockerbie scotland? guest: we are now hearing this as more and more comes out from the leaks, things that we are learning -- from wikileaks. as they start speaking, there has yet been a window on all things libyan that we have not had. host: did president bush had
this knowledge when he normalized relations with libya in 2005? guest: i do not know how much she knew. but at the time, i supported many of the bush policies, i'd normally support the friendship that developed with libya. there was a moment when something really went right. that was gaddafi giving up his nuclear weapons. his nuclear weapons program that he was developing, it was an advance program. he was ordering up and some from pakistan, the same one where north korea and iran were clients. he did that because he was terrified that he would end up in the same position of saddam hussein who had just been overthrown and pulled from a spider hole in rock. so far, so good. first, the bush administration than the obama administration, both guilty here, went on to
embrace gaddafi. they just did not say, "think you very much for your wmd kit, now you are on your own." i faulted bush should ministration in the obama administration for continuing it. remember. hillary clinton last year low of one of gaddafi's sons to washington in a very public display, a big pr photo op. they smile, shake hands, she gives him a warm welcome to america. again, the turnaround. none of that really had to go one. we could have just said, "sorry. you are a terrorist dictator. you are horrible to your own people in have been telling them for years. -- for yeras." the policy was to write to
tournament to the model of the managed dictator. look how well he is being treated because he turned over his wmd, the idea to entice, for instance, north korea or iran to the same. and has not worked out all. all it did was exalt gaddafi to the point where it has probably made this whole situation now in libya far worse because he believed that he really had all sorts of influence, and in fact he did, and he had recovered from this time of being a pariah. right now, it may look like key is on the ropes -- nike is on the ropes, but is not like he has been here before. host: claudia rosett is a graduate of yale, said that columbia, and university of chicago. she spent two decades on the
editorial board. what is the foundation for the defense of dr. marcey starks -- defense of democracy is? guest: it was set up with the thought of how to reset -- how we save america by promoting and protecting democracy? in the end, that is where this all comes to head. host: where is your blog? guest: pajama's media. i write the rosett report and contribute column to "forbes" and various other known outlets. host: one last point before you can join the conversation on the line, on our twitter page, or send us an e-mail. you wrote, "was the u.n. merely
scrambling to save its image with regards to muammar gaddafi before returning to its sub- friendly business as usual -- thug-friendly business as usual ?" guest: it is thug friendly. what has been alarming to see the things going on with gaddafi and and the big when there would be iran, which is under a whole series of binding u.s. sanctions, and at the same time is not actually a price at the u.n. and sits on some of the governing boards of the biggest u.n. agencies, unicef for instance. iran as a part of the 36-member governing board that oversees unicef. the u.n. environment program in vero beach -- in nairobi.
also, significantly, the flagship program which is at the u.n. development program. undp and libya, remember, had recruited gaddafi's daughter is a goodwill ambassador. they unloaded her after this began in february. iran is a part of the board of the undp. they serve in a lot of capacities including, and this is one of the biggest lobbying coalitions which has 37 countries including vienna. host: if libya did not have oil, with the u.n. response be different? is oil a factor? guest: it is hard to say if the u.s. response would be different. -- if the u.n. response would be
different. what finally made something happen here at the u.n. was clearly the u.s. realize that there was going to be an incredible massacre that it would be a bad idea to go down in history as someone who waited for the long arm of justice to bend when the libyans were slaughtered wholesale with the entire world watching. oil is probably a big factor in this. de have enormous oil contracts at stake. what is going on at the u.n., i think, is a more complicated problem. members of the obama administration turned to the arab league or waited for them to make the decision. why is the arab league is so interested here in the state of the libyans? what are they driving at?
the arab league is not a group of democratic states. that was the -- host: that was the political cover he was looking for so it was not just u.s. in libya. guest: ambassador rice came to announce the vote. it was not a sweeping voting. russia, china, india, germany all abstained. those are large powers. i think rather than let this disintegrate into confetti, maybe it is worth asking the bigger question. what is the actual strategy here? i think the answer is that there is not one.
there has been a jumbled series of responses and it is very emblematic that the president left for brazil having announced this and everyone here is kind of wondering where does this go? what is it about? here is going to end up in charge of libya? will then negotiate with gaddafi? will a french missile accidentally allowing -- land on his house? they need a now-gaddafi's own rather than a no-fly zone. clinton, maryland. good morning. caller: can you hear me? guest: yes, i will try to turn up the volume. caller: i think you are being a little bit naive. president bush and president obama both encouraged to
gaddafi. all the other countries that have affiliations with libya. this is something that countries do. i do not know what your point is. libya has something that we need. they have oil. a large number of the people there want our help, so we should give it to them. why should go into a country people whowhere the cu do not want us? these people are asking for our help. guest: you are asking a good question about how does this all add up the. first of all, i think we're doing the right thing to intervene in libya. i think it would be a terrible thing to just watch this slaughter proceed. the larger question of what is the strategy and to which this debts, what is the strategic -- into which this fits?
they have oil when gaddafi was a pariah or when he had a man heading the u.n. security council or the human rights council. there is something more at play. but to step back for a minute, what is the real problem in the middle east? what is the biggest concern in all of this? i think it is iran. remember. people keep saying, "at least, thank god, the docca does not have nuclear weapons." iran looks very close to that now. over and over there have been these reminders that iran is hipping -- is shipping weapons to gaza. iran is enthusiastically for intervention to get rid of gaddafi.
that is not because they want to see a pro-western democracy in libya. the bigger question is go into libya, but what for and what came in the and it? how does this fit into a larger strategy -- what aim with in the end? what to do with the middle east that is not only in great that people right now -- great upheaval right now where you have a significant power, iran, that is really interfering in all sorts of ways which is a huge interference in syria, shipping weapons to gaza, and that has the law has come to power in lebanon -- and hezbollah has come to pwer in lebanon. how on earth does this end up
being protected? how do you -- i think the interest that people have in the middle east in being free is a wonderful thing. it's human. it's not limited to the middle east. it's what the chinese were asking for in tiananmen square. the question is how do you support that and not end up in what begins as a movement to get rid of a tyrant and turns into something even worse. host: some background affirmation on the united nations. 192 current members of the u.n., 50 countries signed the initial charter on june 26th, 1945, at the end of world warii in there are five permanent members.
u.s., russia, china, the u.k., and france. republican line from florida. good morning. caller: hello? the good morning. thank you for taking my call. i agree with her on a lot of things. mr. obama is no difference then all these other guys here. also, on mr. gaddafi, we have a regime today in our country that is so dangerous that they praise these murderous guys out there. mr. obama is no different than those people because he bows to them and praises them. maybe not out in the open, but it is dangerous. we are in a dangerous, dangerous time.
i think this is all a big game. it was planned from day one. this is coming and it is coming now. it is happening. if obama had the chance, he would be doing the same thing to his people. if he had the chance, not that i am saying that. if he had the chance, he would do the same thing to us if we opposed him. host: using military power? caller: if he had the chance. host: whether you like for dislike president obama, that seems pretty harsh. caller: i think of the had the chance, he would do it. that is who he is. guest: one quick answer to this. whenever your assessment of president obama's intentions are character, he is difference in
one respect. he is part of a democratic system. it matters, actually, what people in america think about this policy. that is one of the reasons why we are paying real attention to the flash bang in libya which is all over the news but also, again, the bigger picture. the real question here, i think, is what is this administration doing about a round? -- about iran? if they get nuclear weapons, you will see a nuclear race leading to things that we have not begun to imagine how awful they could be or figure out how to deal with them. that is where it is different. we do have a democratic system and we can debate it. host: from a meeting in italy in a meeting between gaddafi and ban ki moon?
how is ban ki moon doing? guest: he was down in the washington discussing how the u.n. deserves a lot more money because it has had reforms. one thing he has been touting its ethics reform. this is a joke. this is rank propaganda. the ethics department is actually better known, even among the u.n. staff, for failing to protect whistle- blowers and in not pursuing anything from ethics. he has been of no great years. the financial disclosure, he has been touting what amounts to a one-page document where senior u.s. officials check the box where say they refuse and choose not to disclose anything. in the larger picture of u.s. strategic interests, i do not
see any way in which ban has either been a brilliant leader or it was his deputy that came to the meeting when the had authorized action on libya thursday evening. again, where is the moral rudder? for a secretary general who claims to be supporting u.s. values and interests, you would have to see more of a moral compass. we can argue over which president does things right, but fundamentally this is a free country that supports democratic values. again, i refer you to the photograph of ban with gaddafi at the barbecue. that is not a secretary general who is bothered by hanging around thugs.
the chief of staff of ahmadinejad, and iran, is due to arrive in the new york on friday. he is here to celebrate a u.n. festival on monday. ban ki moon is running a u.n. where he does not decide that kind of thing, but he welcomes these people. host: we are talking with claudia rosett. a link to her blog is available on our website, c-span.org. joining us from scotland. this is carried live on the bbc parliament's channel. welcome to the conversation. caller: i like how you said how they managed to dictators. how can a manager psychopath? we have had lots of people in britain criticizing tony blair shaking hands. the british diluted food and
believed they could manage. the americans are much more accurate. how wise your counsel was. why is america so reluctant to get in there and get rid of this character? we lost a lot of people in lockerbie, scotland, which is not too far away from where i am. he should be dealt with. american should not be worried about using military power. he has murdered hundreds of citizens for no good reason other than revenge and should be killed. thank you, claudia. guest: the difficulty with the whole idea of the managed a dictator, which is the approach that the u.s. has been trying to take with the north korea, iran. this is not a unstable arrangement like you think. -- not a stable arrangement. who is the opposition?
who would take over? well, one of the big problems is that countries, not just the u.s. but in europe and the rest of the world and sat on their hands while gaddafi murdered his democratic opposition. i wrote four years and no one paid attention really about the leading democratic dissidents in libya and who spent years in prison, and horribly abused, isolated, and incredibly brave man. he spoke up in 2004 in the brief window when gaddafi was supposed to be opening up when it then senator now vice president joe biden went to libya to asked gaddafi to lead the man go. he spoke up and gaddafi for him back into detention. he died needlessly in the custody of gaddafi's secret police two years ago.
host: those are some of your cruise missiles being used in libya overnight. caller: yes. but wider european countries so keen to get involved? america gets nothing in the wake of oil from libya. we are having to be dependent upon rusher for gas. this is why maybe the french and british are so desperate. host: thank you for the call from scotland. any response? guest: i think he makes an excellent point, you know? one of the things i keep wondering is somewhere in here are we going to get the lockerbie bomb marked out of libya? he was released allegedly with three months to live and is still going.
he belongs back in jail in the u.k. it host: the man composition of the u.n. includes the general assembly which meets every september and. we carry those remarks on c- span. there is the security council which voted last week 10-1 with five abstentions to move ahead with military operations in bolivia. there are economic and social councils. the secretariat, and the u.n. is trustee council. from greenville, south carolina. good morning. caller: good morning. thank you so much. yes, claudia. i have a couple of questions for you. it seems like you are an intelligent person. you remind me of a dog running around chasing its tail. you come up with these ideas about our allies and why and how we wound up waiting for the u.n.
to move into libya first. again, last week we had the question of how this country can survive an economic crisis. obama is very progressive, and sometimes he has not had anyone to leave him anywhere. -- lead him anywhere. he has taken the time to be a good decision maker is set of listening to just his own ideologies. host: think you for the call. guest: thank you for the interesting comments. president obama has it been averted. -- has it inverted. he is conducting, broadly speaking, and is a fair policy on a foreign front -- a lassiex
faire policy. you can read it as careful thought and deliberation or sheer confusion and not having a thought on what to do. i had it toward the second reading especially if you look at the conflicting statements out of the administration in the back and forth over egypt, and over libya. he is very busy trying to find the economy of the united states and conducting a lays a fair -- a laissez faire policy, i think the americans are pretty good at that -- looking after themselves given half a chance. this is a problem that goes on on the foreign front. there is no really effective, overarching rule of law and justice in this world. it would be lovely if there were, but where do you go? gaddafi has been referred to the
international criminal court but that holds no mustard unless he is actually there. you end up with the situation where all these great pronouncements can be made. president obama says, "gaddafi must go," well, yes, i agree. american leadership has been important. if we did not lead, someone else will. china is making a bid for it these days. the question is, where does this go just beyond the immediate response? i will go along with the eu and authorized air strikes verses' here is what will guide the u.s., broadly speaking, but the test that is coming that will dwarf libya is iran.
they are going to attack someone. their own people will rise up again and try to throw out of the regime. something bad will come there. that is the crisis that is coming. we need to know what this administration is going to do. host: we will conclude on that note and invited to come back to speak on iran. claudia rosett, the journalist and a resident for the foundation for the defense of democracies. the website is defense democracy.org. tomorrow morning on "washington journal," we continue the conversation. our guests include jack spencer with the heritage foundation to talk about the safety of nuclear power in the u.s. ami gadhia will be talking about the recalls of specific products. we will take your calls on how consumers can be safe. and marguerite kondracke to talk
about a campaign on education. those are our topics tomorrow morning live on c-span and c- span radio at 7:00 a.m. eastern, 4:00 on the west coast. as we move into spring, enjoy the rest of your sunday and have a great week ahead. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2011] >> in a few minutes we will go live to "newsmakers" with the head of the nuclear regulatory commission gregory jaczko on japan's nuclear crisis. then general david