tv BBC World News America PBS June 14, 2011 4:00pm-4:30pm PDT
>> this is "bbc world news america." reporting from washington, i am matt frie. -- frei. rebels gain fresh ground in libya and new questions emerged about the cost of unseating muammar gaddafi. paying a visit to pr. barack obama arkansas arrives more than half a century after the last u.s. president to make that trip -- barack obama rides. and an online friendship that landed both back in court. welcome to our viewers on pbs in america and also run the globe. from libya, the war between -- continues between rebel forces
and the troops who remain loyal to. tonight, reports of renewed nato bombing attacks on tripoli, while in misratah, there are calls for more support. >> we are with libya as rebels, just a mile away from colonel gaddafi's forces. that is them behind the barricade, defending the road to tripoli. the rebel fighters here have broken out of the city of misratah, but now, they are struggling to advance much further. we are right on the new front lines. rebels have been making some progress, but it is very slow and utterly dependent on nato air support. the trouble is that air support the rebels say is not coming
fast that. meanwhile, gaddafi's forces are continuing to attack this position. is nato doing enough to help you advance? >> nato do not seem to strike very often here. that rocket motor has been pounding us since early this morning. we are sure nato can see it, but what we cannot understand is why did it take us out. in the past few days, the fighting here has been tense and for the rebels, costly. they are still be seized in this corner of western libya and just lost 40 men to advance perhaps 1 mile. above us, a rare glimpse of nato
jets, bombing colonel gaddafi was a positions but failing to find and silence all his plans. for the poorly trained rebels and plenty of civilians, here is the result. >> we see a lot of devastation. i think nato should do something. >> in the meantime, the daily skirmishes ride on. nato is making a difference here, but not yet a decisive one. >> as the fighting continues unabated, nato resources are starting to be stretched. today, the british defense secretary insisted that the effort will continue for as long as required. after the head of the royal navy
warned that his fleet would be unable to maintain the current pace if the operations last through the end of the year. i discussed the military mission with the former nato supreme allied commander in europe. >> is it true that nato is running out of bullets on this one? >> in many respects, that is true. i believe that what has happened here in the sense of precision munitions, a special kind to limit collateral damage -- nations do not have a large stockpile, so they will either have to make more or by some from the united states or other nations. >> is it -- the conflict started when nato bottom of and people assumed it would be over within a matter of weeks or months. >> i think so, but as you go back to the end of the cold war, since 1989 to 1990, there has been a reduction in not only troop strength, but also the ability to carry out the higher end operations like we see in
libya. >> the outgoing secretary of defense, robert gates, gave a speech, if you can call it that, too late to the other day in which he was pretty brutal in his honesty. he more or less said the situation at the moment is potentially dismal. what is the point of this organization, looking at the current conflict it is fighting? >> somewhat. i believe there is a great role for nato to play. power is not just military. is political. his diplomatic appeared on the military side, and nato is a military alliance, not club med for a club. we have to remember that. nato, in my view, has not matched resources with missions or requirements, and that, to me, has been the key. >> the speaker wrote a letter to president obama today saying, "please remind us of the legal justifications of the conflict
or our involvement in libya." what is he trying to do, and has he also got a point? >> i believe so. unless you're going back to the more powers act. there has been more violation of that then has been compliance in many respects, but i think boehner has a point, and there has to be involvement at some what about congress in the decision when we are making more, even with nato, i think it is extremely important. >> how can nato hold together when you have america increasingly unwilling to foot most of the costs, the germans have to foot some of the costs, but not to deploy the soldiers, when you have all these internal problems going on, how can this organization continue to exist? >> it is going to be difficult. i do not want to sound u.s.-
centric, but without u.s. leadership, nato has difficulty in working. in my view, that leadership has been lacking at the political level. i think we need clarity. we have heard the resolution 1973 from the united nations that says take all necessary action to protect civilians. another side says gaddafi must go, and that is being interpreted as regime change. there is a lack of clarity, and i think we need to get that in order to get it straight. >> thank you very much indeed. out to syria, where u.s. secretary of state filler clinton today accused iran of backing what she called a vicious assaults against pro- democracy protectors. cummins, amidst reports of even greater crackdowns by forces after they regained control of the north of the country earlier this week. jonathan is at the border with turkey for 8000 syrians have now
crossed to safety. he filed this report. >> these are serious refugees -- syrian refugees. back over the border with thousands of displaced people need food and shelter. the turkish military is allowing them this freedom of movement along what is normally a strictly controlled frontier. the inhabitants of this village have made them welcome. in some cases, they are related. in camps like this, they are all along the border and tucked into syrian hills. conditions are primitive and facilities nonexistent. torrential rain has made them uncomfortable and healthy places for families to be staying. some have endured or witnessed frightening experiences at the hands of syrian government forces. >> syrian soldiers beat up our neighbors. the army came to our village. we had to leave home. we came here five days ago, and
we were caught in the rain. the tent collapsed while we were inside. >> there is an alternative. well-run turkish camps with proper tents, adequate food, and medical supplies. several thousand syrians have already opted to shelter here, but they cannot bring their livestock, and they are registered and controlled by the turkish authorities. many of them prefer to stay in the improvised camps along the border. >> is there a real sense of crisis here? the syrians who want to come over the border are free to do so, and the turkish authorities have proved they are more than capable of looking after the seventh of thousands who already ve, but the accounts of those refugees make it clear that terrible things have been going on and still are over those hills behind me. there is a reason why those people are camped down there over the border living in
miserable conditions and are still too frightened to go home. >> in other news, gunmen and suicide bombers have stormed a city killing at least eight people. a car bomb and suicide bomb open the attack of the main gate spirit at least five gunmen stormed the compound, and the second suicide bomber blew himself up in fighting with the police. a united nations report says israel was a state of gaza has had a devastating impact on the economy. israel tightened its blockade in 2007 when the islamist movement hamas came to power. israel disputes these figures. the diary of ernesto che guevara has been published. is what i said she decided to
publish the writings unedited so that readers could get to know them just as he was. they rolled out the much under used red carpet in puerto rico today as barack obama became the first u.s. president to visit the territory in 50 years. key leaders support a referendum, which would ultimately decide on status. is the key hispanic vote back in the states which may have been the main targets here and in fact, most border regions now live and potentially both on the u.s. mainland and on the island they call home. >> a promise fulfilled. during a visit as candidate in 2008, barack obama pledged to return to puerto rico as sitting president. expectations were huge. u.s. presidents do not come to the american territories very often. >> president kennedy makes an overnight visit to puerto rico. >> the last official visit was
by president kennedy in 1961. almost 50 years later, the relationship between the caribbean island and the u.s. mainland remains a controversial one. >> buenos tardes. >> on tuesday, obama said he believes quarter ricans themselves should decide what they want that relationship to be. >> the residents of the island can determine their own future. and when the people of pr make a clear decision, my administration will stand by you. >> that endorsement was music to the years of the puerto ricons that sometimes feel ignored by washington. >> it has been a long time since we had a president come to puerto rico. it shows they are interested in what is happening here. >> the eyes of the world are on us now. we are in the history books. >> beyond the pride that the
visit has ignited here, many feel that a five-hour presidential visit could have little impact on the long- running debate about the political status of this island. many here think that the main objective of the visit lies somewhere else. the puerto ricans that to vote in presidential elections. >> people understand that the president is reaching out because he needs the vote. there is a huge community in central florida. >> even so, officials hope the visit will continue to raise the profile of the puerto rican cause. it appears it will be up to new generations to decide what they are and more importantly, what they want to be. >> for more on the politics of the president's trip, republican
opponents are already lining up for a chance to take his place next year, and i am joined by "time" magazine's washington correspondent. here is the president has been for a half hours in pr. first visit by president in half a century. does he really think this will make a difference? >> if voters do not actually have a say in the electoral college vote, and it does not really matter, but there are 4.6 million live stateside mostly in florida. for-swing states like arizona, colorado, mexico, where the latino vote is incredibly important, so that is why you see him here instead of in south carolina. it is a really important swing vote. it has actually swung much more to democrats here in the last election, 60% of latino voters
went for democrats because a very anti-immigration stance is that republicans have taken of late. >> we have seven republicans last night, six men, one woman. oddly enough, all wearing black or dark blue. anything in that debate that you saw surprise you? >> plenty surprise me. i would have said the former governor of minnesota was my favorite dark horse. he is a conservative. he is a social conservative. he has the right looks, the right religion. the right economic background, and yet, last night, he insulted romeny the day before -- not insult him, but took him to task very harshly on his universal health care and when asked about it in the debate, he would not support it and really took -- called a swing, having pledged earlier in the day. >> the former very successful businessman is so perfect on paper, you would have to invent
him if he did not exist, but he never got the connection with the voters, and that connection was kind of missing last night with most of the candidates. >> yes, i have always thought of mitt romney as the john kerry of the republicans. on paper he looks great, but he is a little too wooden or a little to staff, but he does not enjoy glad handing. he does not have that charm. i think that is something missing in this race, something that another candidate might bring in, like sarah palin. >> it does appear as though this is a wedding still looking for a bribe or a groom, perhaps. >> exactly. a lot of people are really hungry for what they consider someone with more personality, someone with a little bit more guts and distinction from the crowd, and i think that we will see. there are other people still to enter the race. the race is far from said it.
>> it is early days. let's not forget that. -- the race is far from set yet. >> you are watching "bbc world news america." still to come, one british juror may learn the hard way that not everyone should be your friend on facebook, especially when it comes to the defendant. a volcano in chilly continues to wreak havoc on international travel today. while forcing around 4000 residents to evacuate the area. the-cloud has been spreading east around the globe, causing disruption as far away as australia and new zealand. >> it may look staggeringly beautiful, but this is the scourges of modern-day air travel. a century cloud -- cindery cloud from a distant will get with the potential to cause chaos near
and far. a volcanic has closed the local landscape in a carpet of ash. it looks almost ghostly. a volcano erupted 10 days ago, but since then, some 4000 chileans have been evacuated. masks have been handed out by the army. satellite imagery shows why air travel has been disrupted in argentina, uruguay, other south american countries, but it is a transcontinental problem. across the pacific, almost 6,000 miles away in australia and new zealand, scores of flights have been grounded. some airlines have canceled all services to and from adelaide, tasmania, and flights across the tasman sea to new zealand. >> wanted to go home and come back -- i was told to go home and come back at 10:00, and i did, and i have been in this line since then. >> we booked in a hotel. we are spending a lot of money,
and then suddenly, all the plans are going down the drain. >> with a plume of ash still billowing into the skies, life in australia has been disrupted by a volcano most people here have never heard of. the fear is the cancellations could continue well into the week. >> whether it is reconnecting with your old classmates or sharing the fascinating details of your daily lives, these days, facebook is often the social media of choice for 700 million people on the planet, according to the latest count, but for one juror, an ill-advised out reach has landed her in a heap of legal trouble. in a groundbreaking case, the juror in question will be jailed after communicating with the defendant online. >> a centuries-old system of
jury trials now threatened by the very modern world of social networks. at the heart of this story, a juror on a multi-million pound drugs trial last year. today, the four senior judges in london. in the same court, this woman, a defendant in the drug trial, both guilty of contempt of court for discussing the case mid- trial on facebook. by clear rules for bidding jurors from talking to others, it was the juror who message first in august last year. by this time, jamie had been acquitted, but wanted to know what the jury thought of another defendant in the trial. "what is happening with the other charge?" she asked. the juror replied she did not get anyone to go, either, no one budging. do not say anything because they could cause -- call a mistrial. she said she knew, and had deleted all the messages. she would not do that to you.
not to worry. in another exchange from the juror, not to worry about the charge here in no way it could stay hong. this was the second time. at least then, you are all home and dry. to which the defendant replied, "you are mad. i really appreciate everything." added later, "keep in touch, and i will get you a nice present." joanne what if mou at today's proceedings, making legal history as a first juror guilty of contempt of court for using the internet. it is a modern twist on an old crime, a moment courts are increasingly worried about. >> what i expect will emerge is a more focused direction, particularly to deal with social networking. >> as mother of a young child, jane stewart was there -- stared prison. asked if she still use facebook, she replied -- >> i don't.
>> freil had broken every rule in the jurors' book. as such, she faces a jail sentence of up to two years. >> whether it is facebook or twitter, the world truly has been transformed, and indonesia is one country where the changes are everywhere you look. >> jakarta, and urban sprawl, home to 10 million people drawn from every corner of indonesia. not everyone has benefited, but everywhere you look, the mobile's are out in force. this is indonesia's cell phone generation, but for them, calls and text messages are already passe. it is twitter and facebook that
capture their time and attention. indonesians' appear almost addicted to social media. they generate an astonishing 15% of the world's tweets. only the u.s. and brazil produce more. i just two years, facebook shot up from 1 million to 40 million users. so what has made these services such an essential accessory for the young indonesian? i net two cannot imagine their lives before the likes of twitter. >> mostly i use twitter. it is for my -- myself or whatever i am thinking about, what i see. >> it is part of your work as well? >> we have a twitter account of the radio announcer. and then also to promote our show.
>> the world is crazy now. i use it to update myself about my friends, how they are doing. >> so it is an alternative to face-to-face contact? >> yes. some of my friends live in jakarta, so it is an easy way to get to know each other. i think they keep in contact. >> must indonesian's spend less than $5 a month on their contracts, and that includes unlimited access to facebook and twitter. margaret is a politics blogger whose work has been turned into a series of books. she believes social media is a perfect fit with the way indonesians' like to live. >> there is a strong need to connect with people, to form a community and have a shared
understanding around them. twitter and other social media is the first to give a sense of community. >> and it is a trend that sits well with the political change indonesia has seen over the last 14 years, and online openness that has gone hand-in-hand with the journey to democracy. >> and remember, if you want to find out more about this coverage and the stores, simply go to our website. you'll find that a look at why indonesias economy has been able to surge ahead as one of the best performing economies in the region. it is all there, of course, a bbc.com/powerofasia. from all of us here, thank you so much for watching. see you tomorrow.
>> make sense of international news at bbc.com/news. >> funding was made possible by the freeman foundation of new york, stowe, vermont, and honolulu. newman's own foundation. and union bank. >> union bank has put its global financial strength to work for a wide range of companies. what can we do for you? >> "bbc world news america" was
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