tv PBS News Hour PBS May 23, 2012 3:00pm-4:00pm PDT
captioning sponsored by macneil/lehrer productions >> ifill: millions of egyptians cast ballots today in the first free presidential election in the country's 5,000 year history. good evening, i'm gwen ifill. >> brown: and i'm jeffrey brown. on the "newshour" tonight: we have the latest on this historic day, coming 15 months after the ouster of president hosni mubarak. >> ifill: then, we look at the facebook fallout as the social media giant's market debut falters out of the gate. >> brown: we have two on-the- ground reports on europe's economic troubles from spain anr eeee, , ererausterity measurur are e ttttg g me for ordinary citizens. >> ifill: we examine the iran nuclear talks in baghdad as world powers float a proposal to curb tehran's enrichment program. >> brown: and we close with the
diamond anniversary of an american treasure. spthe story of building san francisco's golden gate bridge. >> it's not all celebration, a 75-year-old controversy has flared anew over who should get the credit for designing this spectacular bridge. >> ifill: that's all ahead on tonight's "newshour." major funding for the pbs newshour has been provided by: and with the ongoing support of these institutions and foundations. and... this program was made possible by the corporation for public broadcasting. and by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you.
>> ifill: all across egypt, people did something today that they'd never done before-- voting in a genuinely competitive election for president. for some, it was a day to savor new freedoms. for others, there was skepticism about what comes next. millions of egyptians waited hours in line for the chance to cast a history-making ballot. voters went to the polls 15 months after mass protests toppled president hosni mubarak, who ruled egypt for nearly 30 years. election monitors said the first of two days of voting went smoothly. >> ( translated ): we are still at the early stages but we have received some complaints about the delay in opening some of the polling stations and about campaigning in front of the polling stations but these were few and we immediately contacted those responsible and put an end to these violations. >> ifill: 50 million people were
eligible to choose from a field of 13 candidates. they included figures from the mubarak regime and leaders of the islamist parties that dominated elections for parliament earlier this year. among the four main candidates: mohammed morsi of the muslim brotherhood, the oldest and largest islamist group. many of his supporters favor installing a version of islamic sharia law. >> ( translated ): i voted for i believe that egypt has to be an islamic state that follows the islamic sharia and those who refuse using the sharia do not really understand it, which is why they are against following it. >> ifill: another islamist abdel-moneim abolfotoh is considered a moderate, with support from secular liberals and minority christians. the leading secular candidates include mubarak's former prime minister ahmed shafiq, who insisted he was his own man-- then, and now.
>> i worked for myself. i worked for my family. i worked for the big family of egypt not for someone or for the regime. i am serving egypt, egypt and egypt. >> ifill: former foreign minister amr moussa is also a veteran of the mubarak years, but says he firmly supports egypt's turn to democracy. >> ( translated ): this is a good start for the second republic and if god wills it the majority of votes will bring the right president to egypt. >> ifill: many of those votes were expected to be influenced by rising concerns about crime and the economy. >> ( translated ): regardless of the fact that mubarak was corrupt, life was easier, life was a lot cheaper. >> ifill: and no matter who wins, it remains unclear whether the losers will accept the outcome and whether the ruling military council will readily cede power. voting lasts through tomorrow, with a runoff likely in mid-june and a winner announced june 21. for more on today's historic election, we turn to nancy youssef, reporting from cairo for mcclatchy newspapers. i spoke to her a short while ago. good to see you, so tell me what you struck you that you saw at
the polls today? >> i think the most remarkable thing was how unpredictable the selection. is at every polling station we found different candidates in the lead for surprising reasons. in poor areas we visited in cairo people who we thought would have supported the muslim brotherhood candidate mohammed morsi instead supported ahmed shafiq, the last prime minister under mubarak. so that suggests in some areas rather than having an islamist state what people are really seeking is security. so we're at the end of day one and with no sense of who's in the lead, who's in second place and what's even really driving voters to the polls. >> ifill: were the lines long? the lines were long, but was the turnout high? do we know? >> well, the early estimates we've received from the election commission is 60%. it seems to be a guess at this point, which is lower than it was during the parliamentary elections. so... in that sense it was lower than expected.
so we'll see if day two proves to be better. one of the differences between the parliamentary election and this one is that voters had the days off as holidays during the parliamentary elections. today was a working day, so a lot of people couldn't come out until after 4:00 or 5:00 and the polls closed at 9:00 today. the government has declared tomorrow a holiday, so that may change voter turnout. we might see more people come out that couldn't come out today. >> ifill: was the voting emotional for people who haven't had the chance to do this ever? >> it was incredibly emotional for voters we talked to. even the most jaded were moved by the whole process. we saw people sort of tap the ballot as though... for good luck and we saw people get emotional and cry. we saw people tear up. remember, this is a whole country that's never even had the option to consider choosing its own president and today had 13 candidates to choose from. you can see in the their faces really just the shock that this day had come just 15 months
after the revolution. and so you couldn't escape the emotions. and they rose up and sort of at every polling place we went to no matter the candidate and no matter the circumstances people who were doing very well post-revolution but were still sort of shocked at the prospect of voting and people who really had hoped that the revolution would improve their lives in some way had, in fact, suffered since the revolution, either through a loss of job or increased food prices and what not. so every person i talked to had something to say about how moved they were about the process. about having the option to check off a name and drop the ballot in the box themselves. >> ifill: nancy, with the muslim brotherhood as one choice, the military ruling council as another choice, does this boil down to a vote for change versus stability? >> yes and no. i think it's a choice of where you want the country to go in the future. it's if a way a vote on the
muslim brotherhood and how well you think they have or have not prime ministered in the parliament. it's a vote on whether you think egypt has undergone too much change and has become too unstable or, in fact, hasn't done enough change and need to do more. there's a whole mosaic of factors that come into play in terms of what's bringing this together. but at the most basic level, yes, it's a choice between those who believe that islam should be a guiding principle and that an islamic candidate can bring about the kind of change the revolution had promised and those who think that too much change has happened in too short a period and what the country needs right now is stability and a leader experience who can guide it so that the change that everybody sought 15 months ago actually happens in a productive, healthy way for the country. >> ifill: finally, unanimous circumstance were there any irregularities reported in today's voting like we saw during the parliamentary elections? >> it was much better than the parliamentary elections.
in those elections there were delegates out for the various parties, election airing it right in front of the polling stations. we didn't see it that much. there were peppered violations here and there. my own sense was in visiting, i visited about a half dozen polling centers today. the biggest irregular city that people didn't know the judges in charge of elections, how the actually administer it. so each election was administered a little differently in each of the six places i visited today. the other surprising thing that we saw is people just didn't know who to vote for. so many women i saw today they kept asking and looking around to the election workers saying "who do i vote for?" and were just almost overwhelmed by the prospect of having the choice. and so there was a lot of effort to make sure that election workers weren't in any way communicating with voters because that would have been a violation. remember, there were delegates from each of the campaigns at polling centers and all but one had people sitting there monitoring the process. so there seemed to be a vast
improvement from the parliamentary elections. >> ifill: nancy yousseff reporting from cairo for mcclatchy newspapers, thanks so much. >> thank you. online, you can view photos of egypt's momentous vote today, and an interview with a "globalpost" reporter in cairo about how events unfolded. that's on our "world" page. >> brown: still to come on the "newshour": what went wrong with the facebook offering; views of europe's woes from spain and greece; the iran nuclear negotiations and the golden gate bridge at age 75. but first, the other news of the day. here's kwame holman. >> holman: a pakistani court today sentenced a doctor to 33 years in prison, for helping track down osama bin laden. shakil afridi was convicted of conspiring against the pakistani state. he'd secretly helped the c.i.a. collect d.n.a. his information helped verify that bin laden was at a compound in abbottabad. american commandos raided the site last may, and killed the al-qaeda leader. secretary of state hillary clinton and other senior u.s.
officials had called for afridi's release. a senate investigation has discovered 64 allegations or complaints of sexual misconduct against secret service employees in the last five years. that word came at a hearing today, chaired by connecticut senator joe lieberman. he said it underscores doubts that a scandal involving agents and prostitutes in colombia, was an isolated incident. >> it is hard for many people, including me i will admit, to believe that on one night in april 2012 in cartagena, colombia, 12 secret service agents-- there to protect the president-- suddenly and spontaneously did something they or other agents had never done before. >> holman: lieberman appealed to secret service insiders to come forward if they know about similar incidents. agency director mark sullivan apologized for the colombia scandal, but he denied it's representative of his 7,000 employees, or the culture at the
secret service. >> the thought or the notion that this type of behavior is condoned or authorized is just absurd in my opinion. i've been an agent for 29 years now. i've worked for a lot of men and women in this organization, i've never one time had any supervisor or any other agent tell me that this type of behavior is condoned. >> holman: eight secret service employees lost their jobs over the colombia incident. sullivan said two who resigned are fighting to get their jobs back. oil prices fell below $90 a barrel today, in an ongoing retreat from the highs of last winter. the price was down nearly $2 in new york trading to $89 to $90-- the lowest since last october. wall street was down, too, for much of the day, but recovered in the last hour. the dow jones industrial average ended with a loss of just six points to close at 12,496. the nasdaq rose 11 points to close at 2,850.
republican presidential after trading closed technology giant hewlett-packard announced plans to lay off 27,000 workers by the end of their 2014 fiscal year. that's% of the company's work force. h.p. said its second-quarter earnings fell 31%. republican presidential candidate mitt romney called today for a major move to vouchers in public education. in a washington speech, he accused the obama administration of putting teachers unions ahead of student needs. romney said he'd let low-income and disabled students use federal funds to attend the public or private school of their choice. >> here we are in the most prosperous nation, but millions of kids are getting a third- world education. and, america's minority children suffer the most. this is the civil-rights issue of our era. it's the great challenge of our time. >> holman: romney also responded
to president obama's criticism of his work at bain capital. he told "time" magazine his business background makes him better qualified to manage the economy. mr. obama focused today on the u.s. role in the world, after the wars in iraq and afghanistan. he spoke at the u.s. air force academy commencement, in colorado springs, colorado. >> today, we can say with confidence and pride, the united states is stronger, safer and more respected in the world. because even as we've done the work of ending these wars, we've laid the foundation for a new era of american leadership. and now, cadets, we have to build on it. >> holman: the president also rejected what he called "the tired notion" that america is in decline, indirectly countering criticism by romney. the world health organization now says most of the radiation spikes in japan-- after last year's nuclear disaster-- were below cancer-causing levels. the u.n. agency also reported today that two locations around
the fukushima plant did show higher levels of radiation. an earthquake and tsunami triggered meltdowns in the plant's reactors in march of last year. those are some of the day's major stories. now, back to jeff. >> brown: just four days after it went public on the stock market, facebook is the center of intense attention again on wall street, in washington and elsewhere. but this time, the focus has a very different tone. when facebook founder mark zuckerberg celebrated the public stock offering of his company at the nasdaq opening bell on friday, expectations were positively giddy. the social media giant-- with more than 900 million users worldwide-- began trading at $38 a share and the price initially shot up on heavy demand. but it didn't last: the day ended with facebook trading nearly where it began. and in the days that followed, things got worse, with facebook's value falling as much
as 20%. the fall put a spotlight on facebook and morgan stanley-- the lead bank underwriting the i.p.o. about its initial pricing decisions, its disclosures and whether it favored some clients over others. and the nasdaq exchange itself also faced questions, after technical glitches and other problems affected trading. congress and the securities and exchange commission have promised investigations. >> there are issues we need to look at respectively with facebook. >> brown: and a group of shareholders has also filed a lawsuit against facebook and morgan stanley. facebook did manage to close up today, hitting $32 a share, but still well below its initial offering price. we tackle some of the questions and investigations surrounding all this, with anant sundaram. he teaches business administration at dartmouth's tuck school of business. and rob cox, us editor of reuters "breakingviews," a financial news website.
well, rob cox, when we start to look at what went wrong, look at morgan stanley and the underwriters. what is their role and what are the questions for them? >> in any i.p.o. you try to balance the demand from the stock from institutional investors like big pension funds and hedge funds and some retail investors and you try to get the right balance so you price it appropriately so that in the first day of trading it doesn't go way up in the sky and pop like it used to back in the big internet i.p.o. days of the late '90s but also doesn't decline like we've seen with facebook. and it's a really delicate balance. it's a very difficult job. but, you know, generally you try to get it right so that everybody's happy at the end of the day. you don't have four days later everybody talking about a botched i.p.o., a problematic i.p.o., you don't have mary shapiro and the s.e.c. and all sorts of regulators jumping in on it. and that just... that clearly
didn't happen in this case. >> brown: anant sundaram, what would you add? these questions about what the understood writer has to potential investors, what would investigators be looking at in a case like this? >> it is at this moment alleged that there might have been some information asymmetry that might have been exploited by some with favorite access to that information. i have only seen allegations so far, but let me first say that, yes, there's a lot of criticism about this i.p.o. and morgan stanley but from an issuer standpoint, we have to recognize that this was a huge success. and morgan stanley's job, we should recognize, is to maximize the proceeds to the issuer. so to some extent i find that part of the commentary a bit baffling. but back to the information asymmetry issue, what is being suggestd is that perhaps in the last minute there was some information that might have been
given to analysts at morgan stanley and a couple of other underwriter firms that might havhave enabled them to revise their evaluation models thereby making institutional investors pull back on their demand for the i.p.o. now, i find it extremely surprising that something like that would happen, but we don't know what the facts are. but i will say this: facebook filed many amendments to its prospectus right up until the final date of the i.p.o., which i think was may may 18 and they explicitly stated that their revenue has been declining from 155% all the way down to 45% and that they continue to see declines. now, it's not clear to me what an investor looking at that would have guessed other than to say, well, they expected to decline further. so it's a bit of a fine line, but we don't have all the facts.
>> brown: well, rob cox, help us out here. what is the problem, then? where do you look at with what facebook did say or didn't say or morgan stanley did or did not say? >> look, i mean, i take your point anant about the idea that the issuer in this case facebook and the venture capitalists and people behind facebook and earlier supporters had sold $38 a share, $16 billion of stock. but, you know, on day two mark zuckerberg, the c.e.o. and founder who only sold stock insofar as he was dealing with tax issues and all the 3,000 some odd people who were at facebook, they've got to live with this company going forward. so what might have been a quick win for the backers, the venture capitalists here is a real los for facebook. we're sitting here talking about how facebook is up there with morgan stanley and the wall street money grubbers, as it were, rather than how facebook is connecting 900 million people
around the world, our ex-girlfriend, our old bosses, our parents, all those kinds of things. the creation... the very thing that mark zuckerberg tried to avoid by really taking himself out of the frame with the i.p.o. remember he said all along i'm only doing this for my investors and my employees who want liquidity with the stock. in a sense, now, he's got more distractions than he bargained for. he's got lawsuits, litigation, he's got mary shapiro, s.e.c., us talking about it on television. and we're not talking about what a great creation it is but what a botched i.p.o. it is. so i would just sort of balance. yes, it was a great deal financially for a few people but on the broader term this is not a great thing for facebook going forward. >> brown: anant sundaram, what does history tell us about these kind of i.p.o.s, if there is any good analogy. is it too early to tell about its success or failure? >> yes. it's too soon to tell us about its success or failure. but we do have considerable
evidence on long-run performance of i.p.o.s in the academic finance literature in general. on average, aoeup east coast underperform over a three to five year horizon it turns out. but actually in the evidence, again, on average to s to be believed-- and the empirical evidence is pretty strong-- it's the stocks that are large i.p.o.s such as facebook that tend to outperform and stocks that are taken public by higher quality-- within quotes-- bankers such as morgan stanley or goldman sachs as opposed to second-tier bankers, the evidence shows that the extent of the underperformance isless. my personal view is six months from now, one year from now-- which is whalely what an investor should care about from the point of view of his or her holding and wealth creation and what the intrinsic value of this business is-- six or seven monos, ten months, one year from now we will have forgotten the first few days and the focus really will be on whether
they're executing their strategies as they need to and the fundamentals are where they are implied by this value. >> brown: rob cox, briefly, we use the word "investors." let me put in small investors we're talking about. what do you think small investors should learn from all this? >> well, there's a two-tiered market in this country and a hundred billion dollars of value was created before this thing went public. it was created for a thousand people or institutions and retail investors were not one of them. retail investors are getting a bit of the david krejci of the market because you can keep funding these best companies through their best growth cycle. they're not getting a great deal. for i.p.o.s this is a bad game to play if you're a retail investor. wait it out. in a year we'll see whether mark zuckerberg is able to execute on his strategy to make money from this fabulous creation of his. >> brown: rob cox, anant sundaram, thank you both very
much. >> ifill: european leaders gathered in brussels today, as the eurozone's economic woes worsened and they braced for the possibility that greece will drop the euro. one of the most vulnerable e.u. nations is spain-- sliding from recession into depression as its banks teeter on the brink of collapse. we have two reports from "independent television news", beginning with lindsey hilsum in spain. >> reporter: on the streets of madrid, they have a message for the leaders meeting in brussels: stop cutting and start promoting growth. for them, the spanish government decision to recapitalise bankia, the country's fourth largest lender, while reducing education spending by 20%, was the last straw. students and teachers are just the latest people to come out on strike in spain. they say the government shouldn't be bailing out the banks while cutting education because that will destroy the future of the country.
we have fought very hard for many, many years just to lose things just like that, just because of the government, just because of europe, just because of the european bank. we don't like that. >> reporter: with youth unemployment nearing 50%, students see no future in spain. so where will you go? >> i don't know-- latin america, somewhere. brazil, mexico, somewhere where it's going up, you know. >> reporter: the leaning towers of bankia dominate the madrid skyline, but it's unlikely to be the only spanish bank needing a bailout. no one here's expecting a miracle from god, but many spaniards would like a word with the germans whom they blame for forcing their government to persist with austerity measures. >> also germany also got a lot of profits from the euro, because spain was rich we bought many things that were made in germany.
we are all linked. so if we go to hell, they are coming with us. >> reporter: the new town of valdeluz just north of madrid was built at the time of spain's property boom. but then came the bust. now it's one of a dozen ghost towns. this was the spanish dream-- new developments, luxury apartments, the good life. but it was all on borrowed money. now the developers have lost their investments, the banks are in crisis and increasing numbers of spaniards are homeless. maria francisca and jesus bought their apartment in 2004 when he was earning good money as a builder. but since he lost his job, they can't pay the mortgage. with their daughter and disabled son, they'll soon be out on the street, the dreams they once had the bank, once so friendly, now says it will repossess their apartment.
>> ( translated ): at first they were nice, and said, "don't worry, you can pay at the end of the month to avoid interest. but when you can't pay at all, suddenly you're a bad person and there's the door. go. >> reporter: one family amongst many, every week, more go to the neighborhood advice center to ask how to avoid falling into poverty. but there are no clear answers. europe's leaders may yet save spain's banks, but no one is bailing out the victims. >> ifill: in greece, the government remains in a state of political limbo, with the country's finances in turmoil and voters rebelling against e.u.-imposed austerity measures. jonathan rugman of "independent television news" reports from the greek town of lavrio. >> reporter: littering the hills around lavrio are the silver mines which once financed the golden age of athens. silver from which the very first drachma coins were cast some two and a half thousand years ago. the town's mining industry is long dead now. though the talk in lavrio of returning to the drachma has only just begun.
lavrio looks like a fairly typical greek town entering the high season of summer, but scratch beneath the surface and you find somewhere deeply uncertain of its future and it's place within the euro zone. the harbor is brimming with uncharted charter yachts. tourism becalmed and confined to port in the worst season in 15 years. if the old men linger over a single coffee a lot longer now, well their pensions have been cut by 30%. unemployment is now around 40%. and christos in his early twenties can't even find a holiday job as a waiter. >> no jobs.
>> reporter: german-engineered austerity is blamed for this, too. the holiday homes abandoned and unfinished since financial boom turned to bust. by a tumbledown shack his family is too ashamed to let us enter, we find giorgos, who lives here with his wife and five children. his electricity has been threatened and three days ago his water was cut off, until the local communist party intervened, and he wants europe to put an end to greece's pain. >> ( translated ): i would just ask europe to help poor people, to help them find work, and stop trying to take money away from people who don't have any. >> reporter: all over lavrio are signs of support for the syriza party, radical leftists who campaign against austerity and who've polled more votes here than anyone else. athanasia markouli will be voting for them again next month. because, she says, greeks can no longer drink germany's economic
medicine. as for the euro zone pushing greece out, well, they wouldn't dare. >> they need us. >> reporter: you can negotiate. >> i think so >> reporter: lavrio seems caught between a rock and a hard place. nobody we met wants to leave the euro. yet nobody accepts the eurozone's austerity either. and choosing between the two, well that's not a choice anyone wants to make. >> ifill: europe's main stock indexes plunged more than 2% today, as the euro fell to its lowest point in nearly two years. >> brown: now, iran and the world's major powers go back to the negotiating table, over the iranian nuclear program.
judy woodruff begins our coverage. >> woodruff: for the cameras, at least, there were smiles among the diplomats who gathered in baghdad today. iran's top negotiator and the european union's foreign policy chief were among those arriving for the latest talks. the same parties met last month in istanbul, turkey. today, the u.s., russia, china, britain, france and germany presented a proposal to rein in iran's uranium enrichment and prevent any move to building nuclear weapons. in washington, state department spokeswoman victoria nuland said the detailed proposal included unspecified confidence-building measures. >> i'm not going to evaluate how what we are endeavoring to do is to lay out a path for iran to demonstrate the peaceful intent. we'll see how that goes, but as we've said consistently we need concrete actions. >> woodruff: iran has said its program is only for peaceful
purposes. it made a counter-offer today, apparently aimed at easing the bite of international economic sanctions. a breakthrough appeared unlikely, but there were signs that some progress might be possible. on monday, the head of the u.n. nuclear agency-- the i.a.e.a.-- yukiya amano met with the iranian negotiator saeed jalili in tehran. as a result, amano said a deal could be in the works to give u.n. inspectors access to critical iranian sites, including the top-secret parchin military complex seen here in a satellite image. >> decision was made by me and mr. jalili to reach agreement on the structured approach. >> woodruff: amid the diplomacy, the threat of military action loomed in the background, in the form of possible air strikes by israel or the u.s. to destroy
iran's nuclear sites before any bomb can be built. reporter steven erlanger is in baghdad covering the talks for the "new york times". steven erlanger, thank you for speaking to us well into the evening there. what are you hearing about these talks? >> we're hearing they're not going wonderfully well. the six powers put down a proposal for the iranians which they claimed would be a set of concrete agenda to really get to the heart of the most urgent problem with iran, which is their enrichment to 20% of uranium. and the problem with that it's very close to bomb-grade and it makes not just the israelis nervous but also the saudis and the gulfis. so the idea is to get iran to suspend that enrichment and even export its stockpile of 20% in return for a few benefit.
the problem is the iranians at this point don't think the benefits are good enough and they want sanctions lifted, which has been their push right along. so they had a plenary session in the morning they're now having bilaterals and we don't know whether it's going to come out well or not. one presumes it will be the beginning of a series of conversations but at the moment it's clear from the iranian media and diplomats that they're not happy with what they've been offered in return. >> woodruff: well, how does that square with what we were hearing yesterday from the i.a.e.a. director general who was saying a decision had been made to conclude an agreement? >> well, he's talking about a different set of agreements which are in a way parallel but not the same. i mean the i.a.e.a., which is the investigative agency of the united nations and the nuclear
nonproliferation treaty has lots of questions about iran's past programs. did they make an effort to create a trigger for a nuclear weapon? how have they enriched? there are lots of questions and iran has been resisting answering some of those questions. it has refused to allow certain officials to be interviewed and certain military sites to be examined. and mr. amono went to tehran to work out a deal with iran on how that would be done. i think the iranians played it as cooperation which they then have come here to say means the west should lift sanctions on them. this meeting really is about the intentions of the iranian program and it really isn't about what they may or may have done in the past. >> woodruff: is it your sense that the six powers of the united states and these other countries are together in their approach at these talks? >> well, they are.
they all agree on this proposal that was put forth and they all agreed on what benefits iran might get in the short term if it agreed to move ahead step by step. there is a difference that begins to emerge in how to keep pressure on iran. the russians have regularly said that sanctions are too painful and are the wrong way to go and the russians have refused in the security council at the u.n. to increase sanctions but the u.s. and the european union are about to increase sanctions themselves quite considerably in the beginning of july with a ban on oil exports from iran. and that hurts iran and iran wants them stopped. but in general the powers are agreed on the tactics for now. there's always a risk they may come apart later but in the years of this six-power talks
they've been able to agree on how to deal with each meeting and they certainly agree on their goal which is to try to ensuring that iran does not have a military nuclear program >> woodruff: steven erlanger with the "new york times," we thank you for taking time to talk with us. >> thank you. >> brown: margaret warner takes the story from there. >> warner: what to make of today's developments and the prospects for resolving the standoff over iran's nuclear program? for that, i'm joined by suzanne maloney, who dealt with iran issues at the u.s. state department in 2005 to 2007. she's now a senior fellow at the brookings institution. and seyed hossein mousavian, a former iranian diplomat. he was on the nuclear negotiating team that agreed to suspend enrichment in 2003-- a deal later repudiated by tehran. he charged with espionage in 2007, but subsequently cleared. he is now a visiting scholar at princeton university. welcome to you both.
mr. mouse save jahn, how serious are today's developments? is there a serious mismatch in expectations here? first of all, i should give you a brief on what they agreed in istanbul a month ago. in istanbul they agreed to have a package as a face-saving solution. the principals of the package was to find a solution within the n.p.t. in the framework of n.p.t . the second principle they agreed was reciprocity. the third principle they agreed was mutual confidence building and the fourth was a broad package to be implemented step by step. the problem now today in baghdad is that the package, the p5 plus
one, the big powers, they have proposed iran the different steps are not appropriate in recipro station. it means they are asking iran much more than they are prepared to reciprocate. what iranians they want in the package is very clear. the bottom line for the iranian is first of all the recognize the legitimate rights of iran on their n.p.t. for peaceful nuclear technology inwhich includes enrichment. the second is removal of sanctions, even gradual removal. and the third is to normalize the file at the united nations. >> warner: let me get suzanne
maloney here because you put a lot on the table. does it sound like there's a serious mismatch of expectations here going into today's meeting. or is this the early negotiating jockeying preposition? >> i think what we're seeing right now is a predictable pattern of high expectations, partially cultivated by some of the very positive news reports we've seen over the past few weeks. meeting the reality of sitting across the table... >> warner: in what the iranians have been saying public sphreu. >> really the fallout from the first round of talks in istanbul was so positive on both sides and there was the sense as i think a u.s. official said aknob mousefully the press today that there was a tail wind going into these meetings that there was confidence the iranians were finally willing to talk seriously about the nuclear issue to actually approach these talks in a very business like and constructive fashion. that they had signaled through this gesture yesterday new openness to allowing i.a.e.a. inspectors into the site that
that might be a positive signal that iran was prepared to accept more transparency over the program. for that reason i think there may have been inflated expectations out there. i would suggest that my sense from folks at the state department has been that there's a fairly realistic position of how difficult it is at this stage, how tough it's going to be to get serious concessions from iran and how difficult the political position of the p5 plus one, the world powers will be if iran is, in fact, expecting serious mutual concessions. sanctions relief is not on the table at this stage. >> warner: i want to get back to why. but mr. mouse save jahn, from the iranians' perspective is the lifting of these economic economic sanctions like the fact that iran is blocked from most international banking networks, for instance, or the e.u. ban an
iranian oil imports, is that a nonnegotiable precondition for the iranians before iran will give anything? even if the fairly preliminary stage on this enrichment of the high-grade uranium? >> what can be the maximum concession the p5 plus one they can require iran. first of all is the maximum level of transparency on the nuclear program including enrichment. >> warner: that's what ms. maloney was referring to. and the i.a.e.a. tentative deal yesterday to allow i.a.e.a. access to some of these sites? >> yes. already iran agreed with the i.a.e.a. on a new modality agreement award plan to address all ambiguities of the i.a.e.a. including the possibility of military dimension issues. the agreement tentatively is reached and is ready to be
signed. second is all assurances that iranian nuclear program would remain forever peaceful and iran would remain a nonnuclear weapon state. the proposals... iranians they have proposed includes all this. it means the maximum level of transparency, the maximum level of cooperation with the i.a.e.a., even giving access to the i.a.e.a. to military sides addressing all military dimension issues and all confidence building measures. the i.a.e.a. resolutions and the united nations security council they want but in response the p5 plus one is not ready for appropriate proportionnal response. they are asking iran... >> warner: i'm sorry, but let me ask... >> they shall asking iran... >> warner: let me just ask
ms. maloney why that is. you said that is a nonstarter for the u.s. and the other european powers, to really suspend or delay these serious sanctions, why? >> there's a bit of brings man ship going on. the iranians are trying to give as little as possible and get as much as possible with respect to the sanctions which have already been dramatic in their impact on both the overall economy and the daily persons' life in iran. from the u.s. side there's a recognition we are on the cusp of the most powerful sanctions going to full implementation in just another month so to pull back at this stage would be both strategically unwise and have severe political consequences in an election year in which iran is featuring dramatically in the back and forth between democrats and republicans. >> warner: much to unfold, suzanne maloney and ambassador mouse save jahn, thank you very much.
>> ifill: finally tonight, the golden gate bridge-- an icon of american engineering and architecture-- turns 75 this week. its impact, its legacy and even some of the controversy that initially surrounded it, are once again the center of attention. "newshour" correspondent spencer michels has our story. >> reporter: even before it opened on may 27, 1937 the golden gate bridge was hailed as a modern wonder, a spectacular feat of engineering. in the midst of the great depression, the bridge-- then the longest single span suspension bridge in the world-- brought hope an pride to a city and a country in need of optimism. it was far more than a roadway linking san francisco with counties to the north. >> this is not just a totally successful work of engineering it's also a work of art and it's also an iconic statement about american life, american
possibilities. >> reporter: historian kevin starr specializes in california history and has written a new book on the golden beat bridge, tracing its roots to the progressive movement. >> at the core, progressism was a delight in public works. public works to finish the work of nature, public works to create employment, public works to make a better society. it was a triumph of american civilization. it embodied the idea that an industrial culture could build something that was also beautiful and represented a form of environmental stewardship. >> reporter: the golden gate, the dramatic often shrouded entrance to san francisco bay was a tough place to build and still would be according to writer john vander see who chronicled the bridge's story. >> this is an area of high wind, thick fogs, tidal current that runs at six knot answer hour. strong enough to turn a full-sized ship entirely around.
>> reporter: but those weren't the only obstacles, suzuki kevin starr. >> nothing is easy in san francisco. the sierra club thought it profane it had site. older san franciscans didn't like it because it was not part of mother nature. the golden gate ferry company owned by the southern pacific understandably didn't want to give up its monopoly on some 50,000 comings and goingings on the ferry system. the war department was insistent that certain standards be met that would not black the harbor in case the bridge were bombed. >> reporter: ansel adams, who also opposed the bridge, photographed the golden gate before the bridge was built. his photo is on display at the california historical society where antiya haar wig is executive director. >> but he grew to accept it and the shot behind us, which i love, which is a picture heook in 1953 that i think is kind of coming to peace. >> reporter: for the 75th anniversary, the historical society has put together an exhibit of bridge memorabilia
which includes reminders of the controversy that divided the city between opponents and those who supported it. >> everybody automobile association in every auto dealer in nine counties around the bay were of course for the bridge because it brought if people's movement and cars. it was a fantastic historic debate. >> reporter: that debate isn't over yet, even as the birthday party revs up. one aspect of the 75th birthday celebration that wasn't in the plans was the rekindling of an old controversy. who should get the credit for building and designing the spectacular bridge? the first design, from 1922, showed a bulky unattractive bridge, part cantilever, part suspension. it was the work of chicago bridge builder joseph strauss who decided his legacy would be a span to rival the brooklyn and george washington bridges in new york. but strauss wasn't a civil engineer, he was a builder of
drawbridges, a promoter and organizer and he organized a decades-long campaign to get the golden gate bridge approved and built by him. before construction began, strauss' clunky design was scrapped, though he remainedded as chief engineer. in its place was a sleeker structure made possible by university of illinois engineer charles ellis and leon most kwr +*ef who designed the manhattan bridge. the theory was devised by leanne mosiev who believed bridges in high wind areas didn't have to be ponderous if they were design sod components worked together bridges could be light ere and have longer spans and more graceful than ever thought possible before. >> reporter: construction took four years and was incredibly complex. towers rose 746 feet from the water anchored in rock on both sides of the gate. cables more than a mile long were strung between them.
san franciscans lined the shore to watch as the bridge took shape. strauss insisted on safety measures, including a net which prevented serious accidents until the bridge was almost completed. then, in february of 1937, a five-ton platform holding a dozen workers gave way, crashing into the net, ripping it, and then smashing into the ocean below. no t one survivor, foreman slim lambert, recorded what happened years later. >> i think the men slid off of the staging and then it fell on them in the net. so i think some were probably badly hurt before they ever hit the water. i knew that to have a prayer to survive i had to hit the water feet first. and i managed to do it. i was caught in the net and the net was headed for the bottom. i finally calmed down and began to wiggle and i slid right out. >> reporter: ten men died in that accident, but the work went on. a few months later the bridge
was finished amid much hoopla. and strauss was touted then and for decades afterwards as the designer. his statue is on prominent display near the toll plaza and his photo graces a visitors center opened for the anniversary. but van der zee argues he doesn't deserve it. >> the design was done by charles ellis. he was the signing engineer. that was his job title and that's what he did. working 14 hours a day and a period of four months he either did or oversaw all the computations. this is ten and a half vols of precomputer higher mathematics. >> without ellis' work we wouldn't have known whether the bridge would have worked or not. we could have built it and it would have collapsed. ellis said "this will work requests and he proved it mathematically. >> reporter: before construction started strauss had an argument with ellis and fired him. nobody knows exactly why. >> after he had completed the design and written the
specifications he was fired and his name was removed from all bridge and historical promotional material for more than 50 years. >> reporter: the bridge management admits that for years it did rebuff efforts-- mostly by john van der zee to give charles ellis the credit owed him. that will be remedied when a new plaque is unveiled during the celebration honoring ellis' role for the first time. why does it matter today, 75 years after this bridge opened, as to what happens to charles ellis' memory? >> the golden gate bridge is america's parthenon. if we knew who really designed the parthenon, wouldn't that be a significant part of history? >> reporter: meanwhile, the bridge faces new challenges. 1, 400 people have left from the bridge to their depths and mary curry, the bridge spokesperson, says a metal net is planned to discourage such suicides. >> if you fall into it or jump into it you will actually get hurt so we're hoping that the
combination of the net being there and the fact that you would get hurt will literally solve the suicide issue here at the golden gate bridge. >> reporter: currently there is no money for the $45 million it will cost. and none stop painting of the bridge using its unique international orange color continues, a key to preserving the span from the weather. traffic keeps increasing, about 0 million cars cross the bridge every year. there has been talk of another span or a second deck. but for now the district is relying on buses and ferry boats to help handle the commute. the 75th birthday celebration occurs on sunday, may 27. >> ifill: online, spencer reflects on the bridge-- as both a critical transportation link-- and an icon of american ingenuity. plus, see our slideshow of images before, during and after its construction.
>> brown: again, the major developments of the day: millions of egyptians cast ballots in the first free presidential election in the country's 5,000 year history. and iran held new talks on curbing its nuclear program, with the u.s. and five other nations. >> brown: online, you can join a live chat with my anchoring partner tonight. kwame holman explains. kwame? >> holman: at 1:00 p.m. eastern thursday, gwen will be field your questions on politics and more. find the details on the chat hosted by washington week on our homepage. and on our art beat page, we look at a new exhibit of portraits at the spiva center for the arts in joplin, missouri. that city is marking the one- year anniversary of a massive tornado. all that and more is on our web site: newshour.pbs.org. gwen? >> ifill: and that's the "newshour" for tonight. on thursday, we'll look at decisions handed down by the supreme court. i'm gwen ifill. >> brown: and i'm jeffrey brown. we'll see you online and again here tomorrow evening. thank you and good night. major funding for the pbs newshour has been provided by:
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