tv Key Capitol Hill Hearings CSPAN November 10, 2015 12:00pm-2:01pm EST
cases where we have traveled and done face-to-face sit down interventions. we get contact a lot by social media, via website. we definitely do not have the funds to travel the country to do a personal face-to-face every time. part of what we offer is one-on-one and touring. whether it is text messages, social media -- we take these with a private group 30 violentnse with far right extremists. some of them have been disengaged for decades. now, orthem have just then days or weeks or months. we are using that network as a means of support, of talking
through issues. some issues that propelled them in in the first place. it provides kind of the support that daniel talked about. a family, a community, that kind of support that is not there to say you are horrible because you believe these things. let me share my experience and how i got beyond that, finding that common ground. encounteredou ever anyone that was radicalized by what they had read? normally high functioning, but had consumed a lot of hate literature or is there always something else underlying it? angela: every case is different. some of the information we are finding now is that not every person suffered trauma, abuse, or has mental health issues. some people came from perfectly
stable, loving homes. for some reason felt the need to belong in that way. it is different. some individuals, a small percentage, were raised in an extremist environment, were .aught violence there were individuals raised in a prejudice household, taught racism as children. some will grow up and rebel against that, others will look for a place and say this is it, this is what i know, this is what i was taught. there are individuals who will have maybe one experience that from that point on, pun intended , it colors their view of the world. there are some that will just read. say something has happened unfairly in history, one group is represented more than another -- we cannot classify it all across the board.
it literally is case-by-case. , i want you to give us the u.k. perspective. i want to sit talk about the role of ideology. i think for many people, when you think about early interventions, the first thing that will come to mind is that you need to take on immediately the ideas, the political radicals -- the ideas that political radicals would a spout. is it like angela said that you will come at it obliquely looking at some of the deeper personality issues or societal issues that have pushed this person into this viewpoint? rashad: i will start with a question. in our experience, what we have to make itt trends
easy. all the individual parties are different. politicala perspective. they bind to the masses. as a veryat the world old school left marxist narrative. you have the people west that is dominating the world, the forefront is america and its allies, that is oppressing the natural aspirations of most people in the world. in this instance, the conflict used to be communism and the west, now it is islam. they look at everything in the world through that. they look through the political lens. iny look at any conflict iraq war that it is not a war against iraq because of different economic, social, and
political regions but in manifestation of america to dominate the middle east and suppressed the rising islam. everything is viewed through that lens. you have others that are not political -- that are not ifying, but they may have had questions related to their identity, questioning the sense of belonging to society. they may have had relations with racism, and is in -- and disenfranchisement. they are approaching it because they feel they need something else. who havehave others neither necessarily had a specific, problematic set of grievances or a vertical aeology but are embracing
form of religion which automatically separates them from everyone else. they are separated from other muslims who they see as not being true to islam and not muslim enough. analogous to what you may have experienced. they have, from there, religious inspiration for their political worldview. is really truly representing the. as long that should be enforced over society. the. a very directom engagement with scripture and tells them exactly what is right, wrong, should be enforced as law. they have a very theological political ideology. then you have, the other trend, people who come from different areas and suffer mental health issues. those things have
push them toward embracing a black and white perspective, and this ideology is appealing in that context. the general trends, but most people will be a mix of those things. the tackling or engaging in individual you have to look at the push and pull factors. is it someone that has embraced theology telling them this is what the meaning of islam is, a political ideology aimed at ruling the world. when reading the scripture, you have a iran belt in the u.s., they are reading scripture -- i thought that was a good analogy -- if they are reading scripture it should be enforced and it should be enforced and political scripture. one view, greater totalitarianism, the only way you can engage with that person is to break down the methodology
in that they are approaching scripture. the worldview that is very narrow. the only thing you can do is make them realize the complexity in the way the world is made up. this works in the u.k. and politics as well. -- you meet little tony blair's and little hillary clinton's. they go in and our saviors for the people in cozumel, that is the u.k..se in tony blair is not the most popular politician in the u.k.. there is a complexity to their worldview, then you can start to have more complexity and nuance in the way you understand people, and society. then you have people that do need that. approach is a
multi-pronged approach. the formal measures that we have for counterterrorism is the policy in the u.k., the broad p's.re which has the 4 protect. to stop cars from driving into the embassy in london. then to prepare. when is cars do crash, how do we respond? is other 2 areas of strategy ,nvestigation, profuse arresting people, and prosecuting them. and prevent, prevent is this area of what we have spoken about. the individual, engaging with people who are either vulnerable
toward radicalization or have become radicalized. that works in the protection, prevention, and the pre-criminal state. people that have been referred either by police, the public, or as an example, an example from mosques, communities we had one individual come into the mosque. wants to know how he can start a jihad in syria. they would contact the authorities and say, how do we deal with it? the authorities would send someone appropriate to engage with that individual to make an analysis, diagnosis, and put together a plan. will: there has been criticism of the plan? rashad: huge. this is important to look at. there are good questions that we need to ask. talkingt, when we are
about it, the language is pre-criminal. engaging someone before they have committed a violent act. there are natural concerns about how to we determine that? what is the process? how do we know this is a case? it is a reasonable concern to have. in the broader question, when engaging in de-radicalization, especially with a theological foundation -- what you are going to do, and there are number of different approaches, but in some ways you have to engage with their religious proclivity. britain is still a christian church and state, but in reality we are a secular state. extent should the government be engaging with individuals about their
religious convictions? that comes down to the logic time the intervention. if someone is experimenting with soft drugs, do we engage with them before they get to harder drugs? if you have a young person that is engaging in truancy, you have an intervention? the same logic applies that we should have an early intervention about the kid talking about how great it is to see isis, a beheading, or how people assad is that we need to .o something about it whatever it may be, that may require some form of intervention. the other side is more problematic. mentioned, there is a difference in the investigative side and prevent. is one side of the event.
it has nothing to do with intelligence gathering. has brought onto this state, andis a therefore we should do is monitor everything the state does. saying that isis must be using this intelligence, it must be spying, it must be targeting the islam community, and all of these things are under super valence. 25% of individuals in the u.k. have nothing to do with a right-wing extremists etc.. actually, the overriding majority mentioned there is not a specific theological engagement, but the referrals
come from within the muslim community out. asis a little ascribed government intelligence and targeting a community. the other thing is political -- it is not surprising when an organization, which i will not mention, which previously , al qaeda,thers critical of the program. legitimacye in the of al qaeda resistance to american hegemony. you will have to buy into a lot of these, and to prevent that. it is complicated. there could be good and b -- and bad reasons.
daniel, i want to turn back to you. the counterterrorism part of my brain hears about early intervention and says "yes, that makes sense. you focus narrowly on people who may have demonstrated that they like the propaganda of a violent group. that is the one you want to focus on. then, the american part of my brain speaks up and says "wait a minute, these folks are entitled to free speech like everyone else." is not exactly criminalizing speech, but it seems to get right up to the line if not over. i'm trying to figure out how to strike the balance. your comments a lot has to do with the unique political culture in each country. if we were in germany, they
would have a different answer, versus the united states. find that line? how do we keep the focus on a narrow problem without running the proud tradition of free speech that we all value in a liberal society? daniel: that is the core question of how you make de-radicalization intervention programs work. has a built inon moral problem. it works -- it is supposed to work in a democratic pluralistic society based on rate of a speech, religion, and opinion. on the other side, when something criminal happens, the particle system is more extensive. we know there is a process leading to that criminal act, to violence, that is inherently dangerous to democratic society.
it embraces an ideology and spreads and ideology that is actively attacking and trying to destroy the democratic literalistic society. neo-nazis in germany, they have always tried to hide under the freedom of speech and freedom of political opinion, even though the german version of freedom of speech regarding right-wing extremism is much more extreme than the u.s. for traditional reasons. this problem, to figure out the problem, when an inherently dangerous process starts, balancing it begins with what is morally acceptable. it is a question of how do you structure that program, finance the program. i get the fact they are critical about government run exit programs who try to change a political/religious worldview in prison. there are programs that are
more. in prison, they would say you are free to participate, but if you don't, don't expect to get any beneficial treatment or anything like that. hand, there are nongovernmental programs that can have" version with the government, but they have their own political philosophy. part of theare civil society, the society at large, and we are passive so people come to us when they need help. we have our own version of how democracy goes tomorrow own version of pluralism and democracy. if you come to us for help, this is what we expect. in these instances, de-radicalization can be more ugly -- can be morally acceptable. people are free to leave. it should be somewhere in the
middle. a couple of months ago, i worked program.new dutch they are building a new de-radicalization program. they have set out an interesting framework. they have specifically set out the program of how and where they work in close corporation with experts. strong onirm and their own political philosophy. they recognize that intervening when people have done something, and expensive.ve we need to find out, especially in northern america, what is the point that we figure out it is not accept full? this embrace meant of ideology, this propaganda spreading, is trying to destroy the society you are living in that protects you. the de-radicalization program
when their public-private partnerships they can benefit. they can say you are good in a certain area, but what you're doing now is abolishing these rights, these central principles and constitutional rights. ask yourself, is the system you are propagating were to be 100% realized in the u.s., would any person who is not part of your group, racial or religious, have the same rights? how would you treat them? would you treat them a morally, violently, put them in camps, grant them less rights of speech , would they have to pay an extra tax, would they be killed? these indicators are essential to figure out where you are going. will: thank you, daniel.
i can feel the response in the audience from americans. this is a very european perspective. in this country, we let an awful lot of stuff fly. i wonder, again, how does the hased states, which barely put its toe in the water of these interventions, how does it find that line? rashad: a couple of things. in the u.k. it is a voluntary process. there cannot be a coercive approach to individuals. they either choose to engage or they don't. if they choose to engage, it is a voluntary process with them dealing with the de-radicalization process. that is something the state supports. will: if they are radicalized, why would they engage?
is a different question. why do radicals engage? i don't know if i can make any comments that are not appropriate -- that are inappropriate. why do people put themselves forward? they fundamentally believe they have something to offer, no matter how ridiculous. that they have something alternative to offer for the betterment of society, humanity, or they're -- or their people. they want to engage because they want to persuade the rest of society around them their radical worldview is better for the u.s., for their community, or the country. want toone reason they present their point of view. second, and a lot of individuals have doubts about what they are doing.
they generally have a set of complexities pushing them towards engaging with other people. the reason you have leakage is because people want an intervention. the same reason why people talk about suicide. what they're feeling. you know that they should take it seriously, that they are also reaching out for help. have ast all cases, you high rate of people who want to engage. a point think that is for similar early interventions. it seems like we are controlling the political persuasion of people or the religious productivities -- proclivities of people. in that sense, we have a very reasonable question of remains of the policy in the u.k.. it is impossible in the u.s. we talking about the disruption
of people which is illegal. fighting violence, anti-democratic and liberal. is organizations that undermine marker c and human rights. that is impossible in the u.s. context. the of people are from right and left in the political spectrum fighting against that. it is a horrific conservative and regressive idea. there is side, i think a moral imperative in civil society as a whole to stand up and do something about this. extremismave with the cancer is a partnership between governments and between civil society. civil society can engage in the de-radicalization and prevention
process, and governments can support and facilitate that. it is a social and political interest in doing so. youn economic basis alone should do something. on the social/moral perspective you cannot sit back and do nothing. to see what i mean? you have a huge number of migrants out of syria and iraq. --ope has 2 million people are we taking extremists into europe? from europe we had a whole 5000 to goade of join isis. on one hand we have a moral responsibility to not send terrorists abroad. just what we have been doing. contained and
created these things. we have a responsibility. i'm trying to find this line and balance between public and private. you are the deputy director of a private ngo. can, and you can talk about in the abstract if you like, what is the relationship the between and ngo with early interventions and the government? or should there not be one at all? angela: are you trying to get me in trouble? will: not at all. angela: from our perspective, we can all play a part in interventions and disengagement. whatve to define the rules is needed, and he was best suited for each aspect.
for instance, the easiest example i can give is that when and becomingescent radicalized, i was getting involved and heading toward violence. ask, what could have stopped to you, what could have been done, what person could have approached you, what we do have heard that would have changed your mind? i thought about it for years. i know the kind of teenager that i was, it would have taken someone with real life experience that actually understood what i felt, what i was going through, the obstacles i faced, the issues i dealt with. when we go out and look at these relationships, there has to be support. there has to be people you can ask.
there has to be different aspects. this may be unpopular, and i thatgize, i do not believe relationships between ngos like mine and law enforcement should in any way be intelligence. it should not be telling on people, giving up information. if we are to truly go in there and do this work, we have to create communities of trust. another example, when we get , for instance we recently produced 4 psa messages targeting individuals currently involved in the violent far right in the u.s. expected a negative response, but in essence what we are doing one, we havenumber been there, have the experience, know what it is like. behind closed doors in your
feeling this isn't what you thought it was going to be, things you didn't understand, those feelings of guilt, shame, doubt creeping in -- we get a response from some individuals that is so intense and filled with rage. we will hear things like you are the worst traders of all -- of all, because you knew the truth and you walked away. that tells us we are doing a good job. those individuals are probably and retaining those doubts and they feel ashamed. they think they will get caught. they don't know what to do. thatwe look at things like and build these relationships between the government, ngos, people on the ground -- we need to keep this in mind. i'going to be more successful
going out and doing intervention e, because i am a credible voice. i've been there. the far right in the u.s., we deal with people that have conspiracy theories, paranoia, they don't trust the government or law enforcement. we'd to be clear about those lines in the relationship. there is always room for collaboration. we all have a part to play. we only need to define those roles carefully. rashad: i want to comment on the problematic and debated relationship between the intervention program and security agencies. i know there are programs that are run by intelligence agencies who use them for hard intelligence gathering, names, addresses, group structures. that hurts the idea of intervention and it puts the
families at risk and the social environment at risk. it is burning them just to get a couple of names. positive about counterterrorism de-radicalization programs. many think, i think in the u.s., that de-radicalization is seen as a weird, soft approach as something that should be handled by the pros, intelligence, fbi. if you look at the de-radicalization program, many include former police officers, military, they know what they are doing. they do risk assessment and counter de-radicalization in an area. you can identify concrete aspects, like reducing the manpower of the terrorist group.
human skills and knowledge from the group and the group needs to refill that gap and invest in training people in the hierarchy. it is proven the organizational cost you have put on these groups by getting people out can even cause the complete collapse of the terrorist group or cell. what i would call soft intelligence gathering, not individual names and addresses, but locating were a new recruiter, group, or topic, or , thatis active or emerged is something you can pass on to the authorities and gain special knowledge about the radicalization progress that you can use in training, skill building for probation staff, teachers -- that is influential and important. you make the worse of law enforcement easier and more effective i providing an
additional angle. working with families, people who want to get out themselves, it closes the gap of that network. the counterterrorism network. it removes a blindfold of that area, that social area where radicalization occurs. you can help the police become more effective in that. will: we will open it up for questions, but before i do i want to ask lorenzo a final one. i am at a think tank, you are in a think tank, we have to think in our tanks about the policies that come out of this stuff. you and i have been thinking about why we don't have intervention programs in the united states, or political .adicalism angela's program is unique in this country. isking on jihadism, there
the word organization in d.c. and others, but it is in an infant stage. there has not been a lot of support from the u.s. government for these efforts. i have my own ideas as to why, but i'm curious why you think there has not been a groundswell in the government for these kinds of programs. lorenzo: i think there is a combination of overlapping reasons. it is not even a debate in building an intervention when it comes to right-wing extremism. the debate is only on the jihadist front. that is something we can discuss, but even on that side, to prevent that form of extremism, we have seen a lot of talk but in reality very little resources or action. i think there is a variety of reasons.
at the end of the day, the been on theot domestic side as in european countries. we never see a sense of urgency that exists in european countries. if you look at the european countries that have been the most act of, it has been those that have been touched by an attack. some small-scale intervention, but that has prevented the initial trigger. the dutch have been very active. afterits are very active 1977. there is a trigger event. we have had some, the boston marathon bombing, that has been a trigger. justified. is the numbers are so much smaller than european countries there is not a sense of urgency. the tools that law enforcement had pure are so much more powerful than most european
countries. the fbi can do nice staying operations, which no european law enforcement agency can do. we can talk about the problems, the ethical problems, community engagement issues, but if you are the fbi, it is a very nice tool to have. very effective. a lot of it has to do with acknowledging, as someone who has written a lot about these isues, the fbi organization very much based on numbers and effectiveness. officerun an fbi field you make a good name for yourself and career based on the number of people you prosecute, not those that you prevent from radicalizing. the effect of the fbi has such a big role in the fbi has this kind of mentality, again, not in a negative way but to
prevent this discourse. will: would you say it was a political discourse? a very sober document in the u.k. talking about risk, if something goes to the program, and carries out an act. who gets the blame? in addition to everything you say, politically, no one wants to put their name on this kind of program because they are terrified one person goes the program, carries out an attack, the program is done, the person's career is done. lorenzo: earlier we were seeing that the fbi and the counterterrorism community understands the need to use these. over to -- they are , butionally doing this without guidelines.
we see this with people with mental issues, with minors, where the fbi does not do intervention, but they do not have guidelines. the legal part is a big one. that is something some have beenated -- have advocating. do it the right training, knowledge, partners, and the right legal guidelines. that goes for the fbi and people in the community who want to help. it is a concern we hear from the community. they want to help, though without clear guidelines they withate that is engaging someone, and extremist that may become a terrorist, they will be charged with material support to terrorism, which may happen. most people recognize the next step for u.s. counterterrorism policy domestically needs to happen with clear guidelines from the top. that is what we are not seeing.
will: the department of justice? lorenzo: one of the other problems is that there are a lot of entities that are fighting on who should be running the space. the whole alphabet soup of agencies. everyone is claiming one part of the portfolio. the dhs, the f the eye -- you fbit have -- the ei -- the -- you don't have a head agency. -- let meme at o open it to the audience. down front. >> a fascinating discussion. i write the mitchell report. i want to focus specifically on
cluster andnd isis pose 2 questions. as opposed to far right , some ofor neo-nazis us have attended sessions in on the role of messaging and counter narratives . i would be interested to know, particularly as i listened to what angela had to say about how you do this successfully -- i'm interested to know to what extent you think messaging and narratives can have some in this process of steppingeople from
over the edge. second, if it's appropriate or if there is time, i'm interested to know how you evaluate the considerable work that the saudis do on this issue, and how you evaluate that. will: a question about the efficacy of counter messaging and another question about the saudi's. there is a long trip -- daniel: there is a long tradition of de-radicalization in the middle east and southeast asia. is leading. they would classify it as an active government highly ideological program. with they try to do is with a lot of money and effort to replace jihad is an with another that is not that far away.
nothing of what they do could work in a western country, to be clear. what they do is they have a very strong sense of what is necessary and practical for de-radicalization. getting financial support. the even by these people their own car. they finance the families to meet them in prison. is verytical dimension good and a western country could put so many resources into that work. in terms of evaluation, there is no de-radicalization program that would not claim a high success rate. the saudi program says they have a 95% success rate. one or three years ago, they person al qaeda cell in saudi arabia. 50 our graduates from the
program. there were a number of terrorist plots led by the program. evaluation of no the program. the only information that comes is from the people who run it, finance it -- they say and 95% success rate. issue ofhes the evaluation. i'm skeptical. i think the de-radicalization should and could be evaluated and can be effective. there are questions about data access, the researcher, the program, who finances it, who has an interest in the positive and negative. the saudi program is so popular in the muslim majority world because it is outspoken in terms of the teach them the right form of islam. we debate them out of it. with some countries, i've never
seen network impact this. when the jihadi kids are in prison and you sit down over the koran and they say this is what islam should be, they have no reason to listen. they say you are not a muslim. why should i listen to you? your government paid, westernized, government muslim. they simply say it because they want to get out of prison earlier. i think it is an interesting program. be taken into account what can be done practically in terms of financial support and sustainability. the ideological component i'm critical of. i know it has been written in the media and in some rare studies about the program. there needs to be a real evaluation. will: on the question of counter messaging, is it worthwhile
given that isis has gone out of its way to anger most muslims in the world. you don't light of fellow sunni muslim on higher unless you thend to put your finger in eye of every muslim. as a government we don't message against neo-nazi i -- neo-naziism. decided that it is a violent ideology. the program is saying that you should only engage in acts of terrorism when we tell you to do so. otherwise it is wrong. that is the substance of their theology. that has all sorts of issues. the credibility to read you engage with someone in prison if your act on behalf of the state,
it starts you on a negative already. having said that, my view is very different in the u.k. we attach us over 100 cases over the last six or seven years. in that space, the overriding ,ajority that we have looked at theological or ideological components in the de-radicalization, it has taken place and has continued engagement. it can be done, i just don't religious specifics, especially but the saudi's, is the most appropriate way. in indonesia, morocco, egypt, they have different takes. indonesia, they wrap around where they do the ideological dimension, theology, and taking care of the individual and their
families. they have a lot we can learn from in that respect. coming down to this, this is why calibrators appropriately with the right messenger can be affect to. there are different groupings. you have the bloodthirsty probably near sociopaths who want to join asis because -- you want to join asis because they burned the jordanian pilot alive. successful --re they are social paths and attracted to the savagery. one thing that is interesting is that management. there is a book about how you
need to be savage in order to win, that is what modern jihadist and should be. explains the attack takes. -- it explains the tactics. you mention the random killing of women, children, and civilians. this is in direct a mass transmitted prophetic saying, killing why are you women and children? actually, coming from an todemic voice, not political someone looking at this, that would resonate with the young people i speak to. that is an objective that you can look at, but it is pointing reason not to go in that sense. that has a lot of resonance with people. i say that with experience. i engage with young individuals.
it is not only the messaging, if it is calibrated appropriately -- yes, the u.s. may not be the most credible messenger to a jihadi. ,here will be academic voices and theological voices for de-ous levels of persuasion. no matter how much you dislike the government, it will never justify this type of stuff. and that messaging we have that impact. it depends, calibrating and getting the right messenger will determine how effective the messaging is. it can be effective. will: gentleman in a brown jacket. i'm a retired analyst, but
worked for, among other things, a unit in the state department called the counterterrorism communications center. strategy that we worked on at that time was to mobilize voices in the islamic community to do the counter messaging we have been talking about, not from the u.s. government, but mobilize people in the islamic -- which would be, perhaps, more accessible to the target audience. i think that is still a valid approach. i would be interested in further comments on that. if i can put a wrinkle on that, what happens when communities don't radicalize?
we're talking about far right extremism. there has not then a big movement to push back against that. you are saying that your's is one of the first in the united states to push back. government need to fill that space? quietly encourage nongovernmental organizations to do it, or should it be more laws a fair -- more laws a fair -- faire, to sit back and see what happens? the numbers aren't great, but we cannot afford to see what happens. for example, it could be something as simple as a community being empowered with knowledge. z.t do we do if we see x, y, i will use the trial's and shooting for example. that individual publicly stated
to several people that he was going to go out and commit ask of violence. if that community was empowered, if they were not afraid of him or think "i don't want to call to?"olice, who do i go i don't know if it is a credible threat. i will sayxample, that we cannot afford not to do something. we cannot say that the numbers are not that they so we can let it go. the numbers are getting bigger. certainly not on the scale with other things that we have seen, but there is a problem. we, you meanu say private citizens need to set up more ngos like yours? angela: im into all kinds of things. the academic field and other things. i would say we as a community,
all those engaged in this kind iswork, whether it academic, prevention, countermeasures, policy -- will: take all of the extremism work seriously. let me get another question. something there's that has happened in britain, another european country. was thatre in britain civil society did not stand back against phenomena of radicalized islam. that is why the government is now react to with this fairly aggressive counter extremism policy in terms of trying to disrupt extremist activity and ban organizations. disorder, iehavior think that that reaction is terrible.
well to challenge the ideology. what do i mean? leaderxample we have the of the labour party, literally the leader of the opposition in the u.k., you demand opposition hashe u.k., jeremy corbyn invited someone to come into parliament in the u.k. who hezbollah as friends. terroristy, they have friends in terrorist groups as part of their makeup. civil society has allowed them to be integrated within parts of mainstream society. this is one area where we can ,enefit and hear the words which are do not embrace your value in the tradition. forget why you had a separation
of powers, why you decided there should be no religious text in your constitution. rationale,reason, a why you decided that when you formed the constitution. as well as amazing thinking from the presidential candidates in the u.s. intellectually, we have to stand up to them. we fail to do that. that is why we are seeing regressive measures. in all communities, muslim or not, must share that stake in standing up. what is the american dream, your particular aspirations and values? >> what he is saying is fitting to the u.k. dynamic, but it is not apply to the u.s. a lot of what we discussed is country specific. saudi what works and
arabia works in saudi arabia, and the u.s. does not have a problem with communities radicalizing, it is scattered individuals. occasionally it is for five in an online community, but a different dynamic. the counter messaging, the working with communities, great stuff. it cannot hurt. actually, if not done properly, it can, but for the most part we are talking about individuals here and there radicalizing. with communities that are rejecting some of the more radical messages, unlike important parts of the british muslim community -- it is a different dynamic. state, some of the of the social engineering, some of the needs for the communities to speak out some of not saying it would hurt in the u.s., but it is not necessarily needed.
apart from communities like the somali community in at thepolis, we looked individuals that have been indicted in the u.s. for links to isis in 2014. 40% are converts. they don't really belong to communities. most were very new converts, people for a variety of reasons, but were belonging to the fourth category, build personal issues. outreach is not do much in those cases. a lot of the stuff doesn't apply to the u.s. it is country specific. let me gather a few questions. the gentleman in the baseball cap in the back? thank you for interesting
discussion. my work was with addicts, recovering people, i work as a therapist. i want to see if there is a comparison with addiction treatment. people need information to self diagnose. if they don't have the self-diagnosis they do not take steps. part of that is a measure of what i call soul sickness. i've seen it with guys in combat working with radical organizations. even people in the idf were disgusted with they were -- with what they were doing and needed to make a journey. they also had charismatic individuals that served as elders, almost like a sponsor in had the charisma of going through this difficult journey back. i wondered if you could talk
about that comparison if it holds out. will: if you more questions, one in the back -- no. their disk. -- there it is. i would love to hear the panel's view on some of our "allies" approach to countering violent terrorists. for example, egypt, turkey, and israel. will: thank you, another. in the front. >> thank you for a fascinating discussion. curious if any of your groups or other groups might have actually become a target for some of these violent
extremists. when you think of the example where you were saying you could dismember a cell, a soft way of destroying it people who are not willing to take the next that. we have another question about the way that some states in the middle east handle radical invasion. mainly egypt, turkey, and israel. whetherl question about any of you or if you have heard of anyone being a target as a consequence of doing this the radicalization work. question --he last you end up becoming targets at
least in the u.k.. risk for people that get involved. trying to ---- apologizing radicalization. most anon understand. i actually think it is expanding more. the rest of the world is not like that. which i think kind of comes to my last question. yes, some of the horrific steps of the egyptian government is something we should stay far away from. in terms of suppressing through violent means. not even terrorist. people who may not see eye to eye with our valleys -- values
and you may think it is horrific, but we should not support horrific suppression. whether we think it is effective or not -- it is wrong. i am going to avoid israel. israel has become more and more libertarian. that is a problem. at a conference that my colleagues from turkey and the police and the conference was de-radicalization. the turkish colleagues said, yes we do de-radicalization. we kick and their doors at 3:00 in the morning, and put them into jail. [laughter] at that point we are neutralizing a threat. i know that they have changed a little bit in their community outreach project.
they have a lot stronger community policing aspects. police officers go uninvited and just hand out gifts to marriages and just be present and nice and open. the minorities do not have radicalization programs. there was a question of the threat. people engaging in that war, you have to differentiate -- who naturally feel attacked and threatened by their former groups. and those who are not professionals and come from another background. .nd it is the way how you frame are you frame intervention to give another example. i am leading a group together with the inspirational -- mothers for life, a group of currently mothers from nine countries. most have been killed in syria
and iraq. an openthers wrote letter to the islamic state and posted it on various social media sites. you can find it online. essentiale in a position to challenge beliefs and ideologies. paradise lies at the feet of your mother. the mother, regardless of the faith, regardless of the ethnic background, she is still the mother. she still has something to say about that. wrote that letter and deliberately used certain jihadi terms. i described how these mothers felt after their daughters have been killed. we do get -- officially respond to that, three and a half hours. after 3.5 hours, a official twitter account try to ridicule the message. after a couple of days after the
letter was translated into 10 linkages, they shifted their response. after posting jihadi recruitment videos and comments about the letter saying you might have a point, but you misunderstood what we actually do. here are videos that we just worked out and training. the response shifted from ridiculing and rejecting it to acknowledging parts of the message and try to turn it around. we were able to engage in the message. none of these mothers were actually directly threatened after that. counselor the family or expert and that, i was never actually threatened -- directly threatened. it isou said, of course dismembering these groups, of course it is dismembering the ideology and empowering those who are really dangerous to these groups by the simple biography and simple natural being. i think this can be done in a
way where they recognize what is happening. it is simply getting more difficult to recruit your it is getting more difficult to hold the members. suddenly, you are engaged in an internal argument about why they left, why the comrades left. why these mothers are saying why we should not go to syria. we told the mother's -- you create much more noise within these groups that potentially create doubt and fall out from all of the other types. would you can use -- which you can use. >> we have time for two more quick questions. does anyone have any earning questions? good. he answered everyone's question. lorenzo, final one for you. that is, if you had one recommendation to make to the
u.s. government and you look at this issue in europe and the united states here what would that one suggestion be? >> thank you, i appreciate that. a couple of things to expand. one, resources. there has been a lot of talk about american resources. at the same time, we do not need a massive large-scale program. the problems are very limited. arguing --e been accompanied by the engagements which is useful from a security point. keep the engagement but at the same time target intervention forrams, open up the space society and be partners.
obviously with clear guidelines for everybody. i think it is something that can be done relatively on the cheap -- based on pre-existing structures. i think it would allow law enforcement to zero in on problematic cases and not bad resources on the 15-year-old from facebook who are googling benghazi, just because it is a phase. in would allow the fbi to zero in. resources put in the right way. it is not a matter of creating massive structures. >> thank you very much and join me in thanking our panelists. [applause] up today, live coverage of israeli prime minister. at 3:00 eastern time. eastern, a at 8:00
debate between candidates to become louisiana's next governor. johnratic state senator edwards. tonight on c-span 2 at 8:00 eastern. has a full lineup of veterans day program for you. at 8:00starting tonight p.m. eastern. former first lady laura bush and secretary thomas perez on hiring our heroes organized by the chambers of commerce and the george w. bush institute. wednesday, veterans day, c-span's washington journal from 7:00 a.m. -- the latest on veterans issues and your input via calls, facebook postings. conversations with freshmen members of conference -- congress. urformer marine who served fo
two wars in iraq. 11:00 a.m. eastern, live coverage of the veterans day ceremony at the two of the unknowns at arlington national cemetery. at noon, more from freshmen members of congress. representative ryan talks about his service in iraq as a former navy seal. followed by representative rubin gallego -- decided to join the marines and fight in iraq. all of these bands veterans day coverage on tv or online at www.c-span.org. >>'s signature feature of c-span2 book tv is a coverage of book fairs and festivals. the nonfiction author talks, interviews, and be recalling segments. book tv will be live from the 32nd annual miami book fair. the coverage start saturday, november 21 at 10 :00 a.m. eastern. authors include representative john lewis discussing his mark
-- book. about her book the time of our lives. judy miller joins us to discuss .er book -- on his book the cyber attack and a nation unprepared. surviving the aftermath. on sunday, speak that the authors live. o'rourke takes your calls. barack obama, the clintons, and the racial divide. join us from miami starting november 22 -- 21st. be sure to follow and tweet as your question. >> last week, president obama spoke to native american tribal leaders and later took part in a conversation with the youth.
during the 20 15th white house tribal nations conference. pleasees and gentlemen, the saint regis tribe. douglasjo nation, phil of the seminole nation of oklahoma. [applause] >> are we first -- are we supposed to remain standing? >> ladies and gentlemen, please welcome the president of the united states. ♪ [cheers and applause]
>> remarks first or say something. >> we can do whatever you want. [laughter] president obama: i think i'm supposed to make remarks first. i was feeling so comfortable, i sat down. i'm going to go to the podium. [laughter] [cheers and applause] president obama: i feel comfortable with friends here that i was getting kind of relaxed but i'm going to make some remarks. please everybody have a seat. it is wonderful to be with you and thank the outstanding young people who are going to participate. i thank our outstanding secretary. [cheers and applause] president obama: thank the members of congress who are here who are supporting the
outstanding work that not just the department of interior is doing but we are trying to get every agency to really focus on strengthening the nation relationship we have with the tribes. thank you, members of congress. i want to thank everybody who's here, young and old, but especially the young people, who are participating in this terrific forum. you know, when i ran for office, i pledged to build a true relationship with all of you and back then i was just a young, adopted son of the crow nation. [applause] didn't have any gray hair. [laughter] now i am president barack black eagle. and what started out as a campaign promise has now become a tradition. welcome to the seventh white house tribal nation conference. [applause]
what we have done, i have come out and given a big speech and i was telling jude and others, i get tired of hearing myself talk and just talking all the time. instead of a long speech, i thought i would have a conversation with young people from indian country. and i just want to start off with a couple of brief thoughts. i have acknowledged the painful history, the broken promises that are part of our past and while we couldn't change the past, working together, nation to nation, we could build a better future. i believe it's not only because america has a moral obligation to do right by the tribes and treaty obligations, but because the success of our tribal communities is tied up with the success of america as a whole. and over the past seven years with tribal leaders and federal
officials working together, we have made a lot of progress. we have strengthened your sovereignty, we've expanded opportunity, we delivered justice, but i think we all understand we still have more work to do. we need to do more to safeguard tribal consultation rights. we can consolidate and restore tribal homelands and create more opportunities for tribal communities. the budget would have increased our investments in indian country by $1.5 billion and we need congress to show that same support for indian country. [applause] and one of the reasons i'm so invested in your success is because i have gotten to know so many of you and have become friends. i visited more indian country than any sitting president. [cheers and applause] president obama: last year,
michelle and i visited the sioux nation and invited their young people in the white house. i met with people in the choctaw nation. in alaska i visited native americans and i reiterated to working with tribal nations to protect your natural resources and honor your heritage as we did with denali. we will review proposals to permanently protect you sacred land for future generations. in alaska, i had a salmon spawn all over my shoes, which i was told the salmon was happy to see me. [laughter] president obama: what struck me on each of these trips is when we talk about the future of
indian country, we are talking about the future of young people. i don't need to tell you the enormous challenges that they face. native children are far more likely to grow up in poverty, suffer from significant health problems, face obstacles in educational opportunity. a lot of the young people i have met have gone through more than anybody should have to go through through an entire lifetime, losing family members to violence, suicide or addiction and struggling with the kind of poverty that is unacceptable in the richest nation on earth. in these circumstances, sometimes it's hard to dream your way to a better life and these challenges didn't just happen randomly to indian country. the result, the accumulation of systematic discrimation, but for all our young people have
endured, the young people that i have met have given me incredible hope. i see so much promise in them, so much determination and in the words of a native american writer, courage has been bred into you and it is in your blood. and you're not alone. i want our young people to know we believe in you. we started something called generation indigenous and cultivating the potential of our native youth at least 20 tribal nations have become my brother's keeper communities to give young people a shot at success. even as we prepare our tribal youth, we have to preserve and protect native culture and heritage. if you start losing your language and culture, your sense of connection to your ancestors and touchstons that date back generations, you start going adrift.
you may be devaluing yourself. we have to preserve those bonds and break stereotypes. i believe that includes our sports teams, because we all need to do more to make sure -- \[applause] [applause] president obama: we need to make sure that our young people feel supportive and respected and that's what this tribal nation conference is about, extraordinary young people not just representing their tribes or indian country but the united states. because ultimately we are one family and these kids are our kids. they deserve to be cared, loved and nurtured and given a shot at opportunity. if we do our part, there is no limit to what they can achieve because they have extraordinary talent and extraordinary resilience. i could not be prouder of them. so with that, i'm going to sit back down and let's start our conversation, ok? [cheers and applause]
>> good afternoon and welcome to the final session 2015 tribal nation conference. before we get started. my name is jude, i'm 21 years old. [applause] i had no idea i would be in the position i am in today. i was able to receive a scholarship to the university of louisville and earned my degree in sociology. in and i have spoken to native american communities within the united states to inspire young natives to go out and follow their dreams and do what they love. i truly believe if we work
together we can get to the point where we preserve our culture and tradition and allow and create the opportunities that young native americans deserve. lastly, i would like to say how honored i am to be here. and i would like to hand it over to our panelists. [applause] [speaking native language] >> i was born and raised in alaska and i'm 16 years old. [applause] [speaking native language]
>> my traditional name means he carries the bowl and i'm from the mohawk nation and i would like to say, they tried to bury us. it was a seed for change. [applause] [speaking native language] >> i'm navajo and i'm from mesa, arizona. [applause] >> i'm stuart douglas and 15 years old and i'm a member of the seminole nation of oklahoma and im in 10th grade.
[applause] >> i would like to clarify and let you know in addition to the panelists' questions we have some online. first, we have tatiana. >> my question is is there any way you can get teachers to understand alaska and and native american students and eliminate racism in schools? president obama: it's a great question and i appreciate you guys being here and we're so proud of you and it's fair to say when i was their age, i was not making presentations with the president.
i just want to point that out. i think it's important to point out that jude can really ball. she was being kind of modest in talking about her basketball skills and since i'm a basketball fan, i'm very impressed and her and her sister have really made all of indian country so proud. so we appreciate it. you know, i think that in education, the single most important ingredient is the person in the front of the classroom, the teacher. and we've got incredible, dedicated teachers across the country. my sister was a teacher, my mother taught, i taught in law school. so i have a deep appreciation for the art of teaching.
and i think it's one of the most important professions in our society. but part of being a good teacher is being able to connect and being able to see each individual student and say how do i motivate them and how do i relate to them and how do i make sure that the subject matter that is being taught, whether it's math, science or history or english that i find a link between what's being studied and what people are feeling. and what they have gone through in their lives. and that's true in any community. but it's especially true, i think if you've got schools with native american students or alaska natives. when i was in alaska, when i was
in your home state, it reminded me a little bit of hawaii in the sense that you have this incredible indigenous culture. but sometimes it's not reflected in the curriculum and not reflected in how the schools are teaching and interacting and what the reading materials are. and so, i think we have a special obligation to focus on them and one of the things that we've asked -- that i have asked sally to do is for those schools that are in the bureau under bureau of indian affairs jurisdiction that we revamp the curriculum to get a lot more
input from the students and from the native community and provide more local control so that we are helping to shape and assist what is going to work for those students. for schools that are state-run or local school districts, but have a large native population, what we are doing is we are giving grants to help those school districts think about these issues in a much more serious way. and to your last question, in terms of eliminating racism or stereotypes, that's an obligation of the entire society but especially important in the school. and so my hope and expectation would be that anybody in authority in a school is being
very clear that they -- first day the kids walk in as to what is acceptable and what's not, in terms of how they are interacting with each other, how they are respecting each other and respecting different cultures. if the school is not doing that, it's failing. and one specific element of this that we have talked about and i want to give some credit right now is on this issue of schools and mascots because if you walk into a school the first day and you are already feeling that stereotypes are embedded in the culture and the cheers and all that, by the way, that kid is feeling set apart and different. and so i want to give credit to adidas and a number of officials that are here today, they have come up with a smart, creative
approach, which is to say, if we can't get states to pass laws to prohibit these mascots, how can we incentivize schools to think differently. and so what it has done, it said to the 2,000-plus schools that still have native american or alaska native mascots, you know what, we will work with you to redesign your entire sports brand. [applause] president obama: i don't know if adidas made the same offer to a certain nfl team here in washington, but they might want to think about that as well. but i tell you for them to make a commitment, it's a smart thing to do because those schools
don't have an excuse. what they are saying is one of the top sports companies in the world, one of the top brands in the world is to come in and use all their expertise to come up with something that's going to work and the entire community can feel proud of and bring people together and give a fresh start. and i really want to give them a lot of credit for taking that step. [applause] >> thank you for your question and thank you, mr. president for your remarks on that subject. we have braidon. -- bradon. >> how will your administration help tribal education departments empower low-income native american youth trying to get to college that don't have the money to go to college?
like how can they be empowered to have equal opportunities? president obama: i'll say to all the young people who are here and the parents of young people who are here. the fact is that an education is really the key to a middle-class life in the modern world. and there was a time whereas long as you were willing to work hard, you could support a family without a college education, some sort of advanced schooling beyond high school. it is very hard to do now. every job requires specialization and understanding everything from computers, how to communicate effectively. so it doesn't have to be a four-year college but you need some advanced training.
so the first thing i would say in terms of native american and alaskan youth is we need to do a better job telling you what's already in place, what's already there. the fact of the matter is we expanded pell grant to reach millions of more students. we have tried to simplify fafsa to make sure that -- it's basically the form you have to fill out to qualify for the various student loans and programs out there. it used to be so complicated that a lot of people wouldn't fill it out, especially if your parents didn't go to college, right? so now, you may not have enough counselors in the school and don't know where to go and you just figure you can't afford it. the truth of the matter is between pell grants, federal
loans and grants and scholarships that are available, there's really very few young people who should not be able to go to college if they've got enough motivation. what we would like to do is work with the department of education, department of interior, local school districts to spread the word of what's already out there and we are going to spend a lot of time on reaching into the various communities and make sure that you are getting that information out to students. now, the other thing we are trying to do is strengthen tribal colleges because we think there's an opportunity for more young people to get a good education in a way that is culturally linked and allows young people sometimes to stay at home. i remember one of the first
times i saw you and your sister, there was a story done about incredible native american basketball players who often had trouble transitioning to college because they weren't used to being away from their tribe and community and being in an environment where you are cut off from your people and what you know. and i think the tribal colleges can serve as an important bridge. in some cases you may be you start in that college and then transfer to a larger university once you have gotten more familiar and comfortable with what's required. so we are going to work a lot on that issue. >> next question we got online, but it may be more. how can we best encourage our native youth to pursue an
education and integrate and maintain our culture, traditions and languages. ? obama: maybe i turn it to you guys and see what you guys think. anybody want to volunteer some thoughts in terms of something i should know that you think would be especially helpful? >> at my school, since it is national heritage month they are doing a word on the day on the morning announcement. all the other schools should do that as well because it raises awareness for your culture and language and teach non-native students as well. [applause] president obama: that's a great suggestion. >> for the education part where students can't pay for it or having trouble paying for it, some after-school programs can provide more information about
scholarships and maybe even grants to go to college. president obama: you are absolutely right. if we don't have enough counselors in the schools and having tribal organizations and not-for-profit organizations kind of fill some of those gaps, i think that's really important. [laughter] president obama: my man is kind of low key over there. [laughter] let me say one thing and i'm interested in anybody who has an opinion on this and i know when i went to standing rock and i was talking to the young people about that, part of the challenge here for young people and i think it's true for young people but especially true
sometimes for african-american or latino or asian american and native americans as well. is this age-old question in america like how do you stay true to your roots and your culture, but how are you part of the larger community and how do you balance that out? i think the one thing i would say and there are some communities that have done this better than others, is to recognize that in order for young people to be successful today, you're not cut off from the rest of the world. you have to compete. you have to have knowledge which will empower you about how the world works. and it's not a betrayal of your traditions to understand those
tools and use them on behalf of your community and on behalf of yourself. now i think what you have to do is be in touch with where you are coming from and not forget that. but that's not always going to be in the environment that you find yourself in and you can't shy away from breaking out of what you know and going ahead and reaching out and striving in environments that are unfamiliar to you. kind of breaking out of your comfort zone. as long as you know you have home base and i think that sometimes people get in a situation where they think, if i am going to college and i'm learning this, that or the other and a bunch of my friends are still back home and they're not doing the same thing and somehow i'm not authentic really being
true to my culture and so forth, that i don't think is productive thinking. that i think we have to get rid of, because you know, if you -- if you learn spanish, that doesn't mean you're not an english speaker, means you have one more thing that you know that you can use and you can translate. if you learn engineering, that doesn't mean you have to forget traditional ways of your people. it just means you got both, all right? you can hunt and fish, your native beliefs, but you can also
build a bridge and write code and that's fine. so i say all that just because on the one hand it's important for native youth to be supportive, connected and have a place where they're learning who they are and where they come from but that can't be a crutch for an excuse to be avoiding what's outside the tribe. because, you know, cultures have to adapt and they have to grow along side the world. and there are communities that do this really well. you think about the jewish community in america who very successful in all fields, but
also deeply rooted oftentimes in their faith. i think there are a number of asian-american communities where there is school and then there's a whole set of institutions that teach them their native languages or the languages of their homeland and they don't see a contradiction in it. and we have to think about this the same way. this isn't unique to native americans. michelle came out of a working-class neighborhood and a lot of her friends didn't go to college and sometimes when she came back from college, they said you're all that, aren't you? she said no, i'm going to college. that doesn't make me less black.
i'm a black woman who went to college. and that's how i think i want our young people to think. you can do both. [applause] >> up next is blossom with her question. >> thank you for creating the obama scholars at a.s.u. [applause] i want to speak about poverty because i currently live on a navajo reservation. when i go home and i don't have a suitable home and don't have running water or electricity. i understand you went to visit standing rock. i want to know what kind of
programs you have to offer native american communities who have the worst housing and living conditions. president obama: a lot of this is run through traditionally has been run through the bureau. and let's face it, for decades it was underfunded, it was oftentimes not well managed, kind of an after thought and part of the reason why when i came in, we started this conference was to make sure that we had a direct nation-to-nation relationship with all the different tribes. and our first thing was to just listen to people and find out what is it that you need, what are the opportunities that you have and then we'll try to design ways to help based on what it is that you think would
make the biggest difference. obviously not every tribe is the same. there are now tribes that are doing really well because of gaming or because of natural resources that they have been able to harness, development ideas that they are moving forward on and then there are other communities having a tougher time. the first thing is to listen to each tribe and find out what can we do. on almost every measure, whether housing, education, economic development, health care, we have been trying to boost resources that are available. and that's really important so we're focused on how do we buildup the infrastructure in reservations that are having a
tough time. it's not acceptable that no one has running water. that is getting the help from congress to help build out the infrastructure that people need. but one of the things that i have learned in conversations with a lot of the presidents and governors and others who are in the audience is we have to think about sustainable development so the idea is not just that the tribe is getting money from the federal government, the question is how do we give tribes the tools whereby they can start generating jobs and economic development and progress on their own terms within their communities. and i think that is where you have to focus.
i was just talking to one gentleman, because we took photos before we came out who said they had just signed a contract for multimillion dollar clean energy facility. and that suddenly brings resources to the community. it creates jobs and now that's an economic engine you can start selling power to surrounding communities using in a sustainable way the resources of that tribe and then take that money and plow it back into create more businesses and more jobs. and that, i think is something we want to spend time on and focus on. but the first thing is to get running water and that requires an investment and something we budgeted and we're aware of it.
congress doesn't always cooperate with me. [laughter] president obama: i don't know if you have noticed -- yeah. thank you for the question. >> up next, we have phillip. [laughter] >> mr. president, my question is, do you have any ideas or programs that could prevent childhood obesity and diabetes for native youth? [applause] president obama: because i live with michelle obama and she's all about this. when we had the generation indigenous and youth summit, how long ago was that, couple of months ago -- in july? i know she talked about this.
this is a problem for the entire country, not isolated, it's a global problem. part of what's happened is that as our culture has changed, our kids are eating food that create obesity. they're not getting the exercise that they did a generation ago and you combine those two things and we are seeing this explosion of childhood obesity and since michelle started let's move and my place, we have seen some progress in some areas. but it's still something where we have to make a lot more progress, because when kids start off unhealthy and obese
early on, the likelihood of them having severe health problems later in life are much, much higher and that means much higher health care expenses and then have less money for clean water systems and investing in education and college scholarships. this is something we can turn around and it starts with young people, just having ways in which on a regular basis get exercise and get healthy meals. what we are going to try to do is work with all the tribes and the schools and make a determination, ok, based on traditions and cultures and budgets, how do we get more creative about creating a meal
plan that are better for our kids and how do we program in exercise that is going to keep them healthy. but hot shot division one athlete, making sure -- what is true is that the incidents of obesity among native american youth is higher than it is for the general population. some of that is poor children are more likely to be obese because they are eating different stuff and sometimes it's more challenging and native communities, it's hard to find healthy food. there are food deserts where it's easier to buy a bag of chips but harder to get some fresh fruit or something.
what do you think? >> i would agree that it definitely starts with the youth. i know and you said -- the last generation -- i remember playing outside playing sports 24/7 and that has changed especially with the technology these days. but i also know living in a rural place like you said it's hard to find nutritious food and things like that. i'm wondering how can we make it to where the food that is available isn't necessarily fast food and it's healthier for you. president obama: one of the interesting things we are trying to do is to link up local economies with school systems so that farmers and -- this whole
movement of farm to fork or whatever you want to call it. right now, most school districts and a lot of rural communities, even though there is food all around, people aren't growing it there anymore. if they do grow it, they ship it to somewhere else. it gets processed, manufactured, stuffed with a whole bunch of stuff that isn't necessarily bad for you, gets frozen, gets shipped back and the question is -- and this is going to be -- different for each community, are community, there ways to link up with local farmers, are there ways to link up with traditional food sources?
when i was in alaska, we went on bristol bay and that's where the salmon did his thing on my shoe. [laughter] president obama: in alaska, alaska natives get 50% of their calories from traditional sources. hunting, fishing, gathering and that's an example of where -- how do we adapt that so that that becomes part of the food chain for kids when they're in school, because if there is all this salmon out in the ocean, then -- which is really good for you, but then you go to school tator tots.got is
nothing wrong with tater tots, but you get my point or you have some frozen pizza that got shipped in when you could be eating this incredible salmon that was fresh caught and is going to be good for you and by the way, that then gives the fishermen a market so they are now making more money. those are the kinds of opportunities i think that we've got to look to. and local school districts, in fairness to local school districts, sometimes it's easier for them to take the processed food and one of the problems that's happened in the way schools are organized these days is that recess is so short and lunch breaks are so short that the easiest thing to do is kind of defrost something or stick it in the micro wave and plop it on a tray because you only have a
half an hour before we send you to your next class. this goes back to the education point, one of the things we should be trying to do is to think of the whole child. education is not just books. education is physical fitness. education is the arts, education is music and dance and movement and learning how to eat right and if we have schools that are not designed to do all those things and take care of the whole child then we are probably making a mistake. [applause] >> i have something to follow up with that, but as you know, all aspects of life connect but i'm
wondering since financial situations are typically an issue among native american families i'm wondering how we can decrease the unemployment rate and increase -- to get better financial situations. if we have better financial situations, we would have better opportunity to eat healthier. president obama: as i said before, we are working with tribes to come with economic development strategies. it is very important for us to have -- in our nation-to-nation relationships to have a strategic plan, it's not just a matter of each year get a little more in the budget, give to indian health services, this, that or the other, that's important but the goal is how do we create sustainable development for the nations.
whether through clean energy projects, whether it's through tourism and if it's controlled, but the tribes benefit from it, whether it's utilization of native lands, whether it's starting incubators for small businesses on the reservation, all those things have to be stitched together. so if we are building a road in navajo country, let's make sure that road connects to a hub that makes it easier for navajo to engage in commerce with the local community. if there are things that the tribes are purchasing from the
outside, there's a way to start a business where it's produced on the inside, because the tribe is spending money, it would be useful to find areas where potentially you could -- a young person like you start the business and suddenly you are producing the pencils or the lunches or what have you. and then that money gets recirculated and that increases incomes for everybody. but as i said, i think when you look now at communities that are most successful, nothing is more important than young people and talent and education. the way that the most important way that indian country is going to improve its economic prospects is to make sure every and in some cases that's going to be because they come back to a reservation and start a business or they are managing a
not-for-profit or a tribal development organization and in cases, they are working, succeeding and making money and now they are finding ways to reconnect with their community. and both things are legitimate. there's -- if anybody here on this panel, you graduate, you decide and decide i want to be a business person and you are successful, i have confidence that you are going to stay connected to navajo country and you are then going to be able to