tv BBC World News America PBS June 25, 2012 4:00pm-4:30pm PDT
businesses and major corporations. the what can we do for you? >> funding was made possible by -- this is bbc world news america, reporting from washington, i'm jane o'brien. we have exclusive access to the fighters wage war on the assad regime. >> the idea is to lower -- lure them out. >> a day after the new president is announced, the challenge of uniting the country now lies ahead. a new biography of barack obama searches his past answer who he is today.
welcome to our viewers on pbs in america and around the globe. as fighting continues to rage in syria, word of some of the biggest defection to get from the government's ranks. 30 syrian soldiers including a general and senior officers have crossed into turkey. they are the latest groups to switched sides. our correspondent has just spent two weeks with these opposition forces and we start with their exclusive report. >> forged in the fires of war, a new kind of rebel army is emerging.
for two weeks, we were given exclusive access to the brigade. well the italians and hundreds of men strong. less strategy and tactics are evolving into a full-scale attack have now been launched. seeking through the borders to where they live. and if these are desperate times, then these are desperate measures. the deadly package being delivered is an ieed > -- is an ied. the line between life and death is perilously of them. -- perilously dim.
the man creep onto land controlled by the military. the bonn carefully, slowly. the device is implanted and hidden. one of hundreds now being made in secret workshops across syria. >> they give us extra strength and we lacked weapons, and no help from outside. no one else cares. >> we make a run across the main road as the fighters moved into place. >> this is a pretty audacious operation by the free syrian army. they are acting as bait to try to lower government troops out of their compound down the road
and that is when they are going to detonate their ied. you would as the rebel army going on the offensive. >> of the tanks advanced opening fire. and for a while, they were pinned down. with the ied in place, they had to run away. they are outgunned and out- flanked. despite the strength, the army can't stop these fighters. where one group is in trouble, another can arrive quickly. the rebels move to a normal area as the army deployed tanks and heavy machine guns down the road.
the fighters as land well, and they can move around easily. they advance has the army pulls back. imagine their terror. it doesn't really matter who they support. he millions are caught up in a conflict they did not choose. one spiraling out of control. the world seems unable to stop it. >> as we have mentioned, there is word of major defections of military officers into turkey. officials say they will push to nato to consider the downing of the turkish jet last week as an attack on the whole military alliance. for more on the latest development in istanbul just a short time ago.
we are getting reports from turkey that a second aircraft was sent out -- shot out, a search and rescue plane. how will that affect the tense relations between turkey and syria? >> turkey is trying to build up the case that it wants to make that if it is in the right, syria is in the wrong. the way they presented this, completely unacceptable action. they have stated that the syrians knew it was a turkish aircraft and before they shot it down. they are talking about punishing syria, but they have nothing they can punish them with. relations have been reduced to zero, there are sanctions in place by turkey and can't make those much tougher. they have made it clear that they won't risk that either.
the public is told that the syrians have been behaving outrageously. the best they can do is get as much support as possible to show that in world opinion, they are in the right. the syrian government is giving a very different accounts, repeating that the claim -- the plane was clearly inside the syrian airspace. you have these divergent views, but the reality is that turkey can do much about this. they want to see the government looking strong and getting support. by explaining it wasn't just the first plane but a second one that went to rescue these pilots, they're hoping to win as much sympathy as they can, particularly in the nato meeting. >> we're also getting reports that another general has defected from the syrian army. how significant is that? >> we have to be careful looking
at defections because there has been a steady trickle of them. last year, we saw mostly lower ranking officers and colonels, people like that. this year, this is key thirteenth senior general, a brigadier general to come over. we don't know what unit he is from, that would make a difference. while it is a great morale boost, it hasn't had any significant effect weekend attack on the fighting ability of the syrian army. the opposition tells us about the thousands of people that have joined them, and at the syrian army keeps fighting. >> talking to me a little while ago. a day after her the egyptian president is announced, the government is taking shape. he met with the military council.
there remains deep suspicions about the muslim brotherhood's agenda among many secular s and the country got to there has been a political earthquake in egypt, but you don't really feel it here in one of the poorest neighborhoods. the 66-year-old car mechanic has the good fortune of saving -- having the same name as the new president. he voted for the rival candidates. either way, it is the same. the art of the egyptian, he tells me. people just need to go back to work. when you live at the bottom, as more than 40% do, you have very few choices. it is different if you live at the very top. richest men, like millions, he worries about an
islamic agenda. >> are we going to be treated better or worse than during mubarak? will they accept us as equals? the muslim brotherhood and their promises, they have never fulfilled a promise. >> nearly half of the egyptian voters have backed him. he does his message well, the advertising agency designed it. can he believe in his message? >> we are people that claim to be secular and democratic. there is no doubt that we will support him as our president because he has been elected by the people. >> can egypt when in this situation?
>> egypt could win. they have shown the world that we do respect democracy. >> egypt is deeply polarized. there may be have of that binds to carry it through. >> for more on the opinions of those in egypt and throughout the arab world, i am joined with someone who served at the executive center. thank you for joining me. i want to pick up on the last thought, talking about a polarized country, but still a nation. the revolution exposed those divisions, but there is enough of a common cause that can unite the egyptians? >> i do think there is enough of a common core. we asked what the next government's priority should be.
they tell us the exact same thing, the government should focus on employment, education, and economic development. the early egyptians look very polarized, their priorities are very common. i think this is what the egyptians should rally around, getting egyptians out of the economic crisis right now. >> we tend to focus on democracy, and in egypt, it is about the economy? perhaps the economy has replaced the goal of democracy and the revolution? >> i would not say it has replaced it, but it has taken center stage for most people. without getting to work as the man so eloquently said in their package, all of the goals of the revolution won't be realized without a job.
what the president needs to do is get the right people in the right places in his cabinet to fix the problems and create jobs in egypt. that is the number one priority. >> the white house just last night said again that it is deeply concerned about women's rights and religious minorities under the muslim brotherhood. do you think those concerns are still well-founded? >> i think concerns like that are shared in egypt as well. we find that women are as likely as men to support the freedom justice party. the rise of the islamists is not well founded in the evidence. the other thing we found is that supporters of the freedom and justice party are as likely as liberals to support women's rights.
there is no telling what the president-elect will do when he is in power. but according to his constituents, we expect women's rights should be protected or are as likely to be protected as a secular liberal. >> is there a concern that women may lose out? >> there is a concern. we found that as the economy gets worse and worse, support for women's equality sufferers. economic factors are the strongest predictor of support for women's rights. if we want to empower women, our research indicates that it is about human development, and not so much a secular social program. >> a look at today's other news. a key suspect has been an
arrested in delhi. accused of guiding the 10 done in by phone from the pakistan city as they stormed targets in mind by. more than 160 people killed in the three-day siege. north korea has reacted angrily to the use of its national flag. the exercises last week were the largest staged in 60 years. they called the incident a provocative act while south korea said such training was a regular occurrence. you are watching bbc world news america. still to come, down the wire in mexico. days before voters picked a new president, we will go on the campaign trail of the front- runner. share prices fell on european and u.s. stock markets.
and whether an eu summit can solve the euros on crisis. it comes as more bad news for the single currency. the newly appointed greek finance minister announced his resignation. then there was another country added to the list, meeting a bailout. >> not quite businesses usual. the empty chairs were not just for any minor member, but the two most important. how the prime minister and finance minister hospitalized for a separate health problems late last week. the new finance minister has quit even before he began. he fainted the day after his nomination and decided his co health in his resignation letter. there is speculation that he was unhappy with the makeup of the new cabinet. the chaos doesn't end there. international lenders are due to
arrive in athens to assess the demand to lighten the terms of the bailout. the trip was postponed because of health problems with the prime minister unable to travel to a summit late next week. infectingconomy as its neighbors. cyprus is the next to request a bailout. the banks were heavily exposed to greece and it is likely to receive 5 billion in financial aid. that comes days before cyprus takes over the rotating presidency, a chance to present a positive image and it has hit the headlines for the wrong reasons. this troubled nation is left wondering what might find some good fortune. the government must raise to bring stability to the tattered economy. the doctor seems almost as sick as the patient itself.
>> immigration is one of the most contentious issues in countries around the globe that today the u.s. supreme court weighed in on a controversial state law in arizona. finding much of it unconstitutional, the decision prohibits police officers from are arresting people on minor immigration charges but allows the provision to stand which requires law enforcement to check the status of someone they suspect is in the u.s. illegally. this is just one issue which promises to play and this november's collection. before president obama calls the white house home, the forces and people that shaped his path. >> those of the questions like that in his new biography, barack obama, the story. thank you for joining me. you went everywhere to research
his book from hawaii, to kenya, barack obama really is this a global figure. >> it is crucial to understanding barack obama. that is why i did this. he is not just the first african-american president. in many ways, he is the first global american president with a family coming from kenya, living in indonesia, how that influenced and shake him. >> raise issues is something he has been very reluctant to talk about. >> he is biracial. he is half from white and half black. you are right, he has been somewhat reluctant to focus on race as an issue, and because he
sees himself -- personally, he had to go black to find satisfaction in his life. there is a letter where he describes various of his friends finding different niches. for me to understand myself, i had to embrace it all. >> he describes this book as a search for identity in home. do you feel he has found those? or is he still searching? >> i think all of us are still searching to some degree, but in important ways, he did find himself. bill clinton sort of went past the contradictions and troubles of his life and he is incredibly successful moving forward and
forgetting how the things and forgiving himself and surviving. barack obama spent 10 formative years in college to figure out the contradictions in his life and he was pretty successful at it. if someone with as many contradictions as i have had with -- as i have had, i can come to grips with it, why can't congress? >> you could really have had no two different --which was easiest to interview? >> obama. if president clinton did not want to answer a question, he could filibuster. president obama was more direct in trying to answer the questions. but they both came out of dysfunctional situations. bill clinton, from the earliest age, you could see what he
wanted. the principal had to tell him to stop, he could only run for class secretary. he ran for office so much, his classmates got sick of him. you did not see that in obama until he gets the harvard law school. >> while there may be more than four months before the u.s. voters go to decide president obama fe, mexicans will choose their next leader. the deadly drug war was made apparent when three policemen were killed in a shootout in mexico city's international airport. travelers and dive for cover when the suspects opened fire. aiming to take over this fight comes from the party that ruled mexico for most of the last century, the pri. opponents said that the party isn't tainted by decades of
corruption. -- that the party is tainted by decades of corruption. >> the convention center is a sea of cowboy hats. mexico's men have trampled -- traveled across the country to meet the front-runner in the race to be president. the photogenic candidate with a star wife is standing for the oldest and most powerful political party. in a sports arena next door, tens of thousands of supporters, many of them women, turned out to try to grab a moment. >> it would be a return to years of corruption. but even here, the man that they called the pop star of mexican
politics is still really popular. >> but not everyone has fallen for his charms. a student-led movement has emerged in mexico city. they say he is backed by the main media outlet. >> in my government, there will be no agreement with organized crime. it is not the path of greater security for the mexican people. it is a mistake to think otherwise. does that say we should negotiate who do so out of frustration with the current policies. >> it is probably the most dangerous state in mexico. a car bomb exploded in the state capital. the scorch marks were still visible the following day.
to drug cartels control parts of the state. a woman that has inside knowledge is a former girlfriend of the cartel. >> they are also part of the local government's security body. for example, the police and soldiers, it is not just a close relationship. it is the very same people. >> if the polls are right, he is days away from becoming mexico's next president. critics say that it hasn't changed. but it is the support of strong roles like these that can put the party back into the presidential palace. >> that brings today's show to a close, but you can find constant updates on our website. for all of us here at bbc world
news america, thank you very much for watching and please tune in tomorrow. >> make sense of international news thaat 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. >> at union bank, our relationship managers work hard to understand the industry you operate in. working to nurture new ventures and help provide capital for
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