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tv   PBS News Hour  PBS  March 26, 2014 6:00pm-7:01pm PDT

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captioning sponsored by macneil/lehrer productions >> woodruff: the rising official death toll from the massive mudslide in washington state. rescue teams, search dogs and bulldozers continued digging through feet of muck and debris. good evening, i'm judy woodruff. >> ifill: and i'm gwen ifill. also ahead, from the extravagant estate of the deposed president, to those still occupying a tent city where the protests began. margaret warner explores ukraine's corrupt past and murky future. >> woodruff: plus, our conversation with former president jimmy carter. he weighs in on ukraine, n.s.a. spying and his new call to action. ending violence and discrimination against women.
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>> the crimes against women and girls exceed almost anything i've ever known in my lifetime as far as human rights abuses. >> woodruff: those are just some of the stories we're covering on tonight's pbs newshour. >> major funding for the pbs newshour has been provided by: >> and by the alfred p. sloan foundation. supporting science, technology, and improved economic performance and financial literacy in the 21st century. >> 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.
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thank you. >> ifill: the numbers kept climbing today in that devastating mudslide in washington state. at least two dozen people are now believed dead, with officials adding to the count every evening. scores more are missing. jeffrey brown reports on the day's developments. >> brown: day five since the disaster found search teams still digging. they've been using everything from cadaver dogs to small bulldozers, and even sonar. rain had made the already muddy debris even harder to dig, and more dangerous. >> it's slow going. it could take you about five minutes to walk 40 feet. and then you've got nails sticking out of the ground and things that could hurt you. >> brown: with conditions better today, the teams worked on, holding out faint hopes of finding survivors, along with more bodies. how many more remained an open question.
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the snohomish county emergency management director said in some cases, all they have is a first name and an age. >> we're still dealing with the john does versus john 58's and we're reconciling them, but we're making great progress. >> brown: the people of arlington faced a different task, reconciling themselves to all they've lost. >> several different areas where there's houses at and there's areas where there's no houses and just mud, and they don't have like, dogs searching those areas. uh, i'm sorry, i'm just... >> that's ok, you really... >> brown: some gathered tuesday evening to mourn the victims, and pray for the missing. >> we're here to support those who have fallen and hope that some lives are still recovered. even those leading the search struggled with questions of whether the disaster was preventable, in an area known for past mudslides. >> it haunts me because that's not-- we did everything that we could have done and the community did feel safe.
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they understood that risk. and we were-- i think we did what we could do. sometimes large slides happen. >> brown: the national guard, the federal emergency management agency and others have now joined the operation. as for survivors and their neighbors, there's little to do but wait to find out who else will have to grieve. >> ifill: president obama urged the nations of europe today to re-dedicate themselves to freedom. he used a speech in brussels to lay out a broad case against russia's annexation of crimea, and he said it's a "moment of testing" for the world. we'll hear excerpts of the speech, and a report by margaret warner from ukraine, right after the news summary. >> ifill: new claims of misconduct have hit the secret service. the agency confirms three agents were recalled from the netherlands, the day before the president arrived on his current trip. it was widely reported today that one of the agents was found drunk, in a hotel hallway. the secret service implemented stricter rules after a
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prostitution scandal in 2012. in egypt, general abdul-fattah el-sisi announced he's resigned from the military and will run for president next month. he led the army move that ousted former islamist president mohammed morsi last summer. meanwhile, the government ordered two more mass trials of 919 morsi supporters. more than 500 others were sentenced to death this week, and another 680 are on trial. governments, families and investigators alike may have their best lead yet in the hunt for the missing malaysian jetliner. it came today as officials announced a french satellite spotted a possible full-scale debris field in the southern indian ocean. we have a report from lucy watson of independent television, based in beijing. >> these are the visual images and the white dots were the debris. >> reporter: we've seen images like these before but not so many.
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122 potential objects now spotted by french satellites. >> some objects were a meter in length. others were as much as 23 meters in length. some of the objects appeared to be bright possibly indicating solid material. >> reporter: possibly he said yet again a word of caution. but the evidence is now building. the search is now focused 1,550 miles off the coast of perth. it's a 622,000 square mile stretch. and that part of the ocean has depths of 23,000 feet with complex terrain and undersea volcanos. so from first light those search efforts must begin, every day, trying to hone in on the truth.
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sensitivity toward those missing. yes, we have made mistakes and that had a calming effect on the relatives. that combined with multiple possibly sightings by french satellite, seemed to be more of a resignation and acceptance now of their loss. and that official malaysian sentiment relayed to relatives in beijing today is shared by those who are desperate for definitive news. >> ifill: a federal jury in >> ifill: a federal jury in new york convicted osama bin laden's son-in-law today of conspiring to kill americans. sulaiman abu ghaith acted as chief al-qaeda spokesman. he was featured in videos used to recruit new followers after the 9/11 attacks. abu ghaith is the most senior member of al-qaeda to be tried on u.s. soil since then. he could receive life in prison.
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an oklahoma judge has voided the state's death penalty law because it bars disclosures about lethal injections. the judge ruled, that provision renders the entire statute unconstitutional. two death row inmates brought suit, demanding to know the source of the drugs that will be used in their executions. americans who say they're unable to sign up for health coverage by march 31st are getting more time. the obama administration said today it would allow people already in the process of enrolling until april 15th to finish signing up. but they don't have to provide proof of their prior intentions. that waiver drew scorn from house speaker john boehner and other republicans. the law says that a moment stops at the end of march. that's what the law says. i've got to live by the law, you've got to live by the law, other people have to live by the law and the president needs to
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live by the >> ifill: democrats dismissed boehner's criticism. senate majority leader harry reid said house republicans don't care about fixing health care, only about voting again and again to repeal the law. >> the joke i say to my dear friend, john boehner, is him for having more than sixty votes over there to terminate obamacare. i just think we are at a point now where it really does appear to be extremely disingenuous. that they oppose anything that's good about obamacare. >> ifill: the administration is hoping for six million people to enroll through the federal exchange. officials on both sides of the country were caught up in public corruption cases today. the mayor of charlotte, north carolina, patrick cannon, was arrested on charges of taking nearly $50,000 in bribes. and in san francisco, f.b.i. agents arrested california state senator leland yee and searched his office in the state capitol.
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it's part of a separate corruption probe. a ruling in chicago today could let college athletes join unions. the regional office of the national labor relations board found football players at northwestern university qualify as employees. that makes them eligible to unionize. players behind the suit want guaranteed medical coverage and commercial deals. we'll explore this in detail later in the program. nissan is recalling nearly a million vehicles because of potentially faulty air bags. affected models include the "altima", "leaf", "pathfinder" and "sentra," from the model years 2013 and 2014. nissan says computer software may fail to detect someone sitting in the passenger seat, so the air bag won't inflate. >> ifill: wall street fell back today. the dow jones industrial average lost nearly 99 points to close just under 16,269. the nasdaq fell 60 points to close at 4,173. and the s-and-p 500 dropped 13
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points to finish at 1,852. >> ifill: still to come on the newshour: president obama's forceful words for russia; ukraine's corrupt past and its murky future; extending the deadline to sign up for health insurance; our conversation with former president jimmy carter; a ruling that might revolutionize college sports; and, facebook's $2 billion bet on virtual reality. >> woodruff: president obama met with european union leaders in brussels today and agreed to the extension is the latest part of a year-long push to try to get those 6 million people signed up. for an update on what's working and what's not, we turn to mary agnes carey of kaiser health news, an independent organization, and ceci connolly,
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managing director of health institute at pricewaterhousecoopers which works with insurers and others in the healthcare industry. mary agnes, what's the justification for the delay? >> they say it's basically akin to election day. if you're at the polling places at the time it closes and in line you get to complete the process. they want to allow people who are in the process to complete it. but you get to self attest. you get to tell government yes, i tried to enroll before march 31 but it didn't work so i need more time. >> reporter: why would they need to extend it? because they're not hitting the numbers and getting the people they want to involved? >> they say they've made improvements to the web site and working smoothly. web site traffic is up. the last-minute surge they expect, if they have any problems, they want to make sure they can complete the application. >> reporter: ceci, we have been watching the push the administration is going on comedy programs, radio, spanish
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language interviews, you name it. as a result, who has enrolled and who has not? >> we're still watching for the breakdowns, gwen, but we have been observing a shift in the enroll meant patterns ever since things started bumpily on october is. the first few months the enrollment tended to be somewhat older people, 40s, upper 50s. sons january, we've seen an increase in younger adults, 18-34 age group, and there's so much attention being placed on the young invincibles right now because we believe that they're probably healthier and they're going to spread out the risk. right now it looks -- >> ifill: that will pay for the healthcare. >> absolutely and not have too many health expenses in the near future. we're at about 25% to 27% of total enrollment is that age group. >> ifill: let's go to the self-attesting part of the
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extension today, mary agnes. it sounds like if you just weren't thinking about it or were just plain late and decide to go on the healthcare site on april 2 for the first time, you can just say you were trying to apply and nobody's going to check that? >> that's what they were asked repeatedly, how do you verify it. they say they believe most people are truthful on this kind of application and would be truthful about the fact they are in before the 31st of march but that is the criticism you can get on well after that and check the box on the application. >> ifill: john boehner says a rule is a rule except the healthcare law. >> the employer mandate have been extended, the risk pools have been extended, there's been a variety of extensions but no one will take them seriously anymore. >> ifill: let's take one population group they have been targeting and that's latinos. you talk about the bumbley web site, the spanish part
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wasn't working. is there any evidence they're coming around? >> slow and small, gwen. we knew going in that was always going to be a challenging starting population. not only because of language barriers, but also in that population we sometimes see some skepticism about signing up for something that looks like a government program. we had seen that they can be hard to reach if maybe they don't have a home computer, they may not be on the internet getting email messages, getting social media messages. so you've got to get into the community, knock on doors, go to churches, et cetera, to reach these individuals. >> ifill: mary agnes, is there also concerns in one of the president's interviews, he specifically said immigration is not going to come after you if you sign up. is that a concern? >> that is definitely a concern that if you're in the country to be penalized, if you apply for healthcare coverage. the president's gone out of his way to assure folks that's not the case.
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>> ifill: is the 6 million within reach? >> when they had the problem with the web site the congressional office put the number at 6 million. if you get younger, healthier people in, that helps, you can have older, healthier people in, depends on who is signed up and what is the experience with the people. >> ifill: how are insurers responding? seems like the ball keeps moving further and further away. that's not the certainty many business people love. >> business people prefer certainty, gwen. there's very little downside to today's announcement because they're going to get additional paying customers and that's always been why the insurance industry and hospitals have been relatively supportive of the affordable care act. it is the prospect of many millions more new paying customers, and there's a belief that, if we thought more to have the older, sicker people sign up
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in the early months that these extra weeks are just going to bring in younger and healthier, that's all positive for the insurance industry. so a couple extra weeks to bring in more young healthys, very good news for them. >> ifill: mary agnes, you just talked about more paying customers. is there any measurement that's been handed out about whether people are actually paying premiums yet or whether they're just signed up? >> we don't know that. that's a problem with the back end of the web site. the front end is the consumer experience, you get on and enroll. the back end is the insurance to the insurance company and the insurance company responding to the government to say who's enrolled, have they paid the first month's premium and we ear waiting on the statistics. >> we have been talking to a number of insurers. looking like 70 to 80% payment in the first few months which is comparable to any other insurance market. so so far it appears to be tracking with normal business.
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>> ifill: a little news you can use. if you are someone who has not signed up, you have been meaning to, have been putting it off and you go online, what do you have to do? is there a penalty that kicks in after april 15th or is there never going to be a penalty because the line will keep changing? >> the people that exists now is $95 or 1% of income in the first year for an individual. and people often forget about the 1% of income because it's whichever figure is higher. that's certainly something to think about. but if you want to enroll in coverage, maybe ought to go on the web site today, see what your options are, can you get a subsidy, there is different tiers of coverage. under 30, you can get a catastrophic plan. you might find something that works for you. >> ceci connolly, mary agnes carey, kaiser health news. thank you some. >> thanks, gwen.
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his newest book is "a call to action: women, religion, violence and power." i spoke with him late today about the commitment by him and the carter center to fight discrimination and violence against women and girls around the world. that followed our talk about current news developments. president jimmy carter, thank you very much for joining us. >> good to be with you again. thanks for letting me come. >> woodruff: we're here to talk about your book but first a few questions about what's in the news starting about ukraine. do you believe that president putin and russians are paying enough price for take crimea? >> judy, i never thought anything could have deterred putin from taking crime. i can't no matter what the western world would have done, he would have done this.
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westerners always considered crimea to be part of ukraine and ukraine part of russia, so that was inevitable. but i think he has to be stopped and prevented from further military action. i don't think he's going to. i may be wrong, but i don't think he's going to. i watched his speech very carefully and i think he's going to seduce the eastern ukrainians who speak russian about how attractive russia is by banishments and loans and grants and concessions. >> woodruff: but you don't think any further punishment for taking crimea should happen? >> i don't think so. but i think if he escalates, then yes. but at this point, i don't think so. >> woodruff: what if he does go into another country, what should happen? >> i don't want to tell people want to know if office, but i remember when the soviets invaded afghanistan christmas day, 1979, i was very forcible
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because i saw the danger of them going forward. and i said to the president of russia we would take military action. i went to my ambassador and prepared an embargo and began to arm the freedom fighters in afghanistan repelling the soviet troops. that took bold and aggressive actions, some of which i think would be excessive now. >> woodruff: excess i? i think so. >> woodruff: should not happen today? >> i think it would be justified to arm the ukrainian military effectively and let everybody know they're being armed, yes. >> woodruff: there's a whole lot to talk about with ukraine but there are a number of other things i want to ask you about. so much of your presidency was devoted to making peace in the middle east. you were responsible and anwar
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sadat about camp david peace accords. now secretary of state john kerry very focused on that area. do you think he's making progress? >> he's making more progress than has been made in the last 15 or 2 20 years and done it almost on his own apparently and i stay in touch with him. i give him some subtle advise by email what i think might be done, but i home that he will be bold and aggressive and lay down a so-called benchmark or working process by which they can be -- both sides can be persuaded. but i think that he by himself can't do anything in ortd be effective at least in israel, the president of the united states has to be directly involved and get the whole weight of the united states government behind any controversial proposal. in that case, i think they have a chance to succeed. >> woodruff: you told charlie rose in an interview last night
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you don't think the palestinians will ever agree to the israeli demand that it be declared a jewish state, and you said that you didn't think the israelis would ever agree to give the palestinians right of return. i mean, that basically says the current talks aren't going anywhere. >> well, i don't know which will be proposed by secretary kerry, but i think it's almost possible for an arab who lives in the west bank to agree that israel is a jewish state because about a fourth of the population of israel itself are arabs and they can't deny their own fellow muslims just because they live across the border. i never thought it was possible for palestinians be permitted to come back into israel in an unrestrained way. i think the best is for them to go to the west bank and gaza and
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to pay israel, if the international community decides to, some reparations for the property lost. >> woodruff: the spying by the u.s. government. it's a story very much in the news these days. we learned more this week about what they're doing but you said in an interview in the last few days that you expect that the n.s.a., the government's been looking at your e-mails, listening to your phone calls, so when you have something important to say, you say you send it by snail mail. will r you sure no one is reading your snail mail? >> i can't guarantee that but i don't feel paranoid about it, but it's been generally acknowledged that every telephone call made, every one that you make, every one that you receive by email included, is recorded, and they claim that they don't read those messages but they know that you made the call and to whom you made it and how long it lasted and that they later want to see your particular calls, they can do so. i think that's very excessive.
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and i had to deal with that when i was president as well by passing an act designed to prevent any american intelligence agency from monitoring any single call of an american and, now, of course, they record them all. >> woodruff: the book, "a call to action: women, religion, violence and power." you've said this is the most important book you've ever written. >> it is. >> woodruff: why? because crimes against women and girls exceed almost anything i've known in my lifetime as far as human rights abuses and it goes all the way from intense commitment of slavery, human trafficking in this country and around the world. about 100,000 girls in the united states of america have been sold into slavery last year according to the state department. 800,000 in the world across international borders. and i think the most horrible statistic that's included in this is quite accurate is that
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there have been about 160 million little baby girls killed in this generation by their own parents because they didn't want to have girls, they wanted boys. >> woodruff: by abortion, you mean? >> that includes most recently abortions because now by the advent of sonograms in most countries they can detect the sex of a fetus and it's aborted, otherwise, they wait until the girl is born and strangle her to death. it's an entire generation of females that are no longer living. about 50 million or 60 million of these in china and india. there's one area overindia for every 1,000 men living we have only 650 women living and they have been killed by their parents and now there's a great shortage of brides to marry men in some of these countries -- china, even south korea, and
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women are sold excessively as slaves around the world. >> woodruff: i'm curious at this stage of your life and career why this is something you want to focus on. this is your 28th book. >> that's right. >> woodruff: why this and what do you think can be done about it? >> well, the carter center has been active in 79 countries around the world, very active, we've had specific projects in that many countries and a lot are in the developing world and we've seen the deprivation of women's rights much morph nan in the united states with genital mutilation cuttings, killings and things like that. so this to me is a thing that i might do in the remaining years of my life that would bear the richest dividends if i could just ge get to the world the fas and get us to act. every crime against females
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mentioned in this book, i have specific recommendations on what we can do particularly in the united states. >> woodruff: you are saying this is something you want to continue? >> i will continue that as long as i live and i want the carter center to be a center for people who want to join with us in this crew said to protect women and girls. the united states is very culpable. you know, not only do we deprive women of equal pay but on our university campuses, we have probably the worst sexual abuse of any other place in america. only 4% of the rapes on college campuses even reported because the college -- the university presidents of the greatest universities don't want to report sexual abuse on their campuses because it brings discredit to them, so they discourage female students from reporting rapes. what this does is result in a few men on the campus who know they can rape a girl with impunity because they're not going to be reported and if they
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are reported, they're not going to be criminally prosecuted for it. the same thing applies as you well know in our u.s. military. >> woodruff: president jimmy carter not shying away from the tough, tough subjects out there. thank you for being with us. >> i thank you. >> woodruff: president obama met with european union leaders in brussels today and agreed to prepare possible tougher economic sanctions against russia. in a speech a few hours later, the president called on europeans to meet the challenge of this moment and not take their freedoms for granted, even as he criticized russia's leaders. here are some excerpts from his remarks. russia's leadership is challenging truths that only a few weeks ago seemed self-evident. within the 21st century, the borders of europe cannot be redrawn with force. but international law matters.
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the people and nations make their own decisions about their future. our own borders are not threatened by russia's annexation. but that kind of casual indifference would ignore the lessons that are written in the cemeteries of this continent. it would allow the old way of doing things to regain a foothold in this young century, and that message would be heard not just in europe but in asia, in the americas and africa, in the middle east. this is not another cold war that we're entering into. after all, unlike the soviet union, russia leads no bloc of nations, no global ideology. the united states and nato do not seek any conflict with russia. in fact, for more than 60 years,
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we've come together in nato not to claim other lands but to keep nations free. what we will do, always, is uphold our solemn obligation, our article 5 duty to defend the sovereignty and integrity of our allies and in that promise we will never waive. no nations ever stand alone. it is absurd to suggest as a steady drum beat of russian voices do that america is conspiring with fascists inside you can by failing to respect the russian people. my grandfather served in patton's army, just as many of your fathers and grandfathers fought against fascism. we americans remember well the unimaginable sacrifices made by the russian people in world war ii, and we have honored those sacrifices. we want the russian people to
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live in security, prosperity and dignity like everyone else, proud of their own history. but that does not mean that russia can one rough uh shod -- roughshod over its neighbors. just because russia has a deep history with ukraine does not mean it should be able to dictate ukraine's future. no amount of propaganda can make right something that the world knows is wrong. there will be always voices to say what happens in the wider world is not our concern. nor our responsibility. but we must never forget that we are heirs to a struggle for freedom. >> woodruff: russia's takeover of crimea and other potential movements in ukraine aren't the only problems facing kiev's new government. tonight, chief foreign affairs correspondent margaret warner looks at the challenges
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threatening ukraine's future and whether its new leadership is up to the task. >> warner: this was viktor yanukovych's private world, mezhigoie, 340 wooded acres north of kyiv. with private navy, helicopter hangar and landing pad, golf course and exotic animal zoo. giving us the tour, denis tarakhkotlyk, who's been securing the place since the ukrainian president fled the country last month. >> ( translated ): people who elected him have come from all over the country to see how he lived, they said they heard about it but couldn't believe it, and were shocked to see it. >> warner: inside the recreation building: a bowling alley, tennis court, billiard room, and trophy room in tribute to the man himself. all guarded by another trophy. down an underground passageway, past the fitness center the main
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house, it's grand entry lit by a chandelier documented to have cost $24 million. for ukrainians who earn just an average of $300 a month, this opulent private preserve has become synonymous with the system they wanted to smash. in cooperation with corrupt public leaders. >> corruption is a cancer that almost eats the ukrainian state from within. >> warner: newly-appointed finance minister pavlo sheremeta has barely had time to move into his office, replacing pictures of yanukovych with portraits of the more than 100 protestors killed during the four-month long uprising in kiev's independence square, the maidan. >> woodruff: here corruption so entangled business interests with government. how do you disentangle that at every single layer? >> well, using my metaphor, we
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would do the surgery. it's very important to keep the current public officials and the administrators under very close watch. >> warner: keeping that watch, as they have since late november: demonstrators who remain on the maidan. >> this was my friend and student, bogdan, killed february 20. he was my friend, he was my student, and he was shot here by sniper. >> warner: history professor volodimir viatrovich came here the second day of the protests, demanding an audit of government coffers. now he coordinates the groups that remain to hold the new government accountable >> ( translated ): we are really very afraid of the fact that the new authorities will renew corruption schemes equal to the former authorities. but we have to give them some time to work. >> warner: others on this square-turned-tent city aren't quite as patient. 23-year-old dmitro lutsk, a member of a self-defense force,
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predicts a second uprising if the new government doesn't deliver. >> ( translated ): there will be twice more people and this we didn't have that influence before, but we do now." >> warner: dmitry chesnokov who keeps guard at night, said he just wants peace and calm. but when talk turns to russia's invasion and annexation of crimea, his mood swiftly turns. >> i want the death for them, for the russians too. i want to attack them just what happened in chechnya. i want to kill them. really! >> warner: now, with crimea gone, the kiev government faces a new security threat: a large russian force massed on ukraine's eastern border, which former minister of defense anatoliy grytsenko sees in the most menacing terms. >> we all must understand that putin equals hitler. if that person, mr. putin, is crazy then we can expect anything anytime.
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>> warner: grytsenko says this new government, despite its badly-depleted military, could still defend the country with the right sort of defense leadership and robust, lethal military aid from u.s. and britain. >> those countries back in 1994 ensured security guarantees fort ukraine when we had given up our nuclear weapons. now we see only "sorry, blah, blah, blah." with all respect to economic diplomatic efforts, these sanctions doesn't work. >> warner: prime minister arseniy yatsenyuk has asked the u.s. and n.a.t.o. for weapons and ammunition, among other things. but u.s. ambassador geoffrey pyatt says ukraine's military is irretrievably outmatched by the honed russian force that took crimea. >> they moved swiftly with overwhelming force to defeat the ukrainians. there is no military answer to
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that. in the short term, there is nothing that we can do in terms of military involvement or military assistance that's going to change the basic realities of geography and the balance of power between ukraine and russia. >> warner: what the u.s. can do for ukraine, says pyatt, is help it with long-term economic development. and he sees great promise there. >> you've got a border with four e.u. member states, you've got fabulous human resources, agricultural resources, shale gas. what ukraine has suffered from is bad governance and this revolution of dignity is an opportunity to correct that. >> warner: but ukraine's economy is in as nearly-ragged shape as its forces. with tens of billions in foreign debts coming due, its treasury nearly empty, and the months of unrest and uncertainty have frozen much needed foreign investment. many restaurants in kyiv sit half-empty. this has put the new government
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in a race against time. that kiev post deputy editor katya gorchinskaya isn't sure it's equipped to win, coming into office just four days before russia invaded. >> that in itself is a huge challenge even for a team if the team was well fitted, well suited, well coordinated, but it's not. it's a very, very motley crew of people of different, you know, political backgrounds. they just got together right before as a result of the revolution. to be a good revolutionary is not the same as being a good bureaucrat. >> warner: among that motley coalition now holding key ministries, one faction that's caused alarm in russian- dominated eastern ukraine and beyond: the right wing nationalist svoboda party. it's parliamentary leader oleh tyagnibok was once quoted boasting that ukrainians fought bravely in world war ii "against moscovites, germans, jews and other scum." do you disavow that now?
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>> ( translated ): that's what i said, but my words now, 10 year old words, are being twisted by those who profit it from it. this is also russian propaganda. we are neither fascists, nor nazis. >> warner: what's svoboda's agenda? >> it's very important for us to conduct honest, transparent, fair elections for president, it's very important for us to renew people's trust in government. >> warner: that election in just eight weeks holds promise. but gorchinskaya isn't sure how long ukrainians will wait for the change they've demanded, and died for. >> the nation is now in post traumatic sort of stress. first we had revolution that lasted for four months and now we have the war, and it just doesn't seem to stop >> warner: to judge the limits of patience we visited the bezverhiy family, andrey and his
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even though she draws a pension, mother, tamara, both dentists; it was her sixty-first birthday. even though she draws a pension, she still works too. andrey has hope: >> there are no changes so far, but i see changes in people's mentality. they have started to feel some kind of responsibility for their country >> warner: among those responsibilities, defending ukraine. thousands are flocking to enlist. others, reservists like andrey, are awaiting call-up notices. >> unfortunately, no one asks mom whether she wants or not. if they say there is a need, then you need to go. i have only him, even if i had five of him i would have pity on each. i am worrying. >> warner: yet his mother agrees this country is ready to do more. >> every ukrainian generation has had something: war, famine. we have this fate. we are eager to tighten our belts. we can endure." >> warner: this time, ukrainians want to do much more than endure
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their latest trauma, and use it to finally stake a claim to their own futures. >> woodruff: an important decision on a huge and hotly debated question in the world of college sports. should student athletes be paid? a regional director of the national labor relations board ruled that football players at northwestern university are considered employees of the school and are therefore entitled to organize a union. those players are the first to seek union representation. jeffrey brown looks at the details of this case and the potential impact. >> brown: for now, the ruling applies only to private colleges and universities, but it is the first of its kind. and the decision is expected to reverberate more broadly. the ruling said the university's primary relationship with the football players was an economic one. michael mccann is director of the university of new hampshire's "sports and entertainment law institute," and legal analyst for "sports illustrated" magazine. he joins us now.
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the key thing here mr. mccann is the finding these athletes qualify as employees, not just students. explain that and why it's so important. >> sure. it's important because by being declared employees, the student athletes would be able to then unionize and enter into collective bargaining with northwestern university and try to command salary benefits but, more than that, also, better healthcare benefits, disability payments, workers' comp. the typical benefits that go along with the status of employment which they currently do not get as student athletes. >> brown: give us a little background on this particular case, the students at northwestern, how they came to bring this case and what they were saying they wanted. >> sure, so the students are led by quarterback, king colter, who several months ago decided to pursue the ability of he and others collectively bargaining
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with northwestern, but to get to that step they had to petition the national labor relations board, which has the legal authority to decide whether or not employees at private employers, which in this case would include northwestern, have the legal right to unionize under the national labor nationr relations act. there were then hearings where he testified and s.a.t. a number of things, one of which is he works a lot, in his words, between 40 and 50 hours per week whereas ncaa rules limit the amount of time student athletes can devote to sports to either 20 hours during the vaccines or 8 hours during the off vaccines. so what he said was contradicted in terms of what the ncaa rules were and appeared the regional director sided can king colter on that. the thesis of the players' argument are that they're working just not getting paid. there are counter arguments to that and the case is by no means over because there will be an appeal to the national labor relations board in d.c. but as a
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first step this is a big victory. >> brown: there are counter arguments for a long time, much of it from the ncaa itself. they said we strongly disagree with the notion that student athletes are employees and they continue to hear from student athletes that they participate for the love of their sport, not to be paid. they have resisted this a long time. what is the brunt of their argument? >> well, the brunt of the argument is what you need to, jeffrey, that many student athletes are not commercialized in the sense that they are generating lots of revenue for their school. but when we look at athletes that are generating the revenue, they tend to play in two sports, one of which is basketball the other is college football. but there are many athletes that are not like that, that are more traditional college athletes that are primarily students that also play a sport. there is a disconnect where king
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colter is representing the group that's really commercialized, on television, generating revenue for northwestern in terms of ticket sales and television deals, video game deals and the like and, as a result, the ncaa is focused more on those that are not as commercialized. but i think it's important to stress that there is a potential gender equity here. if only male athletes are paid, i'm sure there will be female athletes that will bring a separate lawsuit under title 9 which is a federal law commanding general equity in higher education including college sports. >> brown: that's what i was wondering, when you look at this, and it is one ruling, given that, what kind of broader applications might flow from this. >> well, if it holds, it would have broader applications in that student athletes at other private institutions could then rely on this decision as precedent and say if northwestern players can unionize, so can we.
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and it could be basketball players, tennis players, you name it. however, student athletes at public universities can't rely on this decision. the national labor relations act only governs private employees, not public. as a result, students at the university of alabama, other state schools -- ohio state -- they're going to have to rely on their state laws to try to unionize and some states, in fact 24 states are considered right to work states, states that women are outright denied the ability as employees of public universities to unionize. so it could be that student athletes at private universities can be members of a union that those of public schools can't including some schools in the south, some big-time programs. >> brown: michael mccann, university of new hampshire, thanks so much. >> thank you very much.
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>> woodruff: finally tonight, like other fabled tech cinderella stories, this one started with a young man with an idea, working out of a garage. yesterday, facebook announced it would pay $2 billion for oculus v.r. which makes a virtual reality headset for video games. newshour economics correspondent paul solman recently featured the company in a pair of reports about virtual reality. we start with this excerpt. the oculus rift is hailed the holy grail of gaming, a light weight full head set to deliver totally immersive virtual reality or vr. >> a lot of us got into the games industry to build virtual walls and explore neat places and being able to step inside those places the first time is
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incredibly exciting. >> nate mitchell, oculus' 25-year-old vice president gave me a sneak peek at the headset driving a robot in the virtual reality version in the post apocalypse game hawk it. the split screen images, what i am seeing in each eye, don't come close to capturing the experience. but with the goggles, i was virtually within hawkins' mad max world. >> ifill: we pick up the story from >> woodruff: hari sreenivasan is in our new york studio, and picks up the story from there. >> sreenivasan: vindu goel covers both big and small players in the tech industry for the new york times and he joins me now from san francisco. >> we are joined from san francisco. why does facebook want to make thin investment? >> facebook is trying to follow the evolution of the social platform. initially we swapped information on the internet, now we use our mobile phones and they're trying
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to think about what is the next big platform that we're going to use to share with each other and it's a futuristic vision but they think that one possibility is we will interact with each other in a virtual world so you and i could speak and seem like we were in the same room during this interview right now. you could go climb the great wall of china and show your family back home what the experience is like. maybe wearing the headsets and they're right there with you. >> reporter: virtual reality has been the stuff of sci-fi and the next big thing for the last 15 to 20 years. what's so different now? >> the technology has gotten a lot better and cheaper. the components that you use in your cell phone that let you take great video images, those are the kinds of things that are now starting to incorporate in the head sets. the technology is still a long
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way from reality, though. this product, the oculus rift, that is the main product that facebook is buying is not even out yet. it may not be out for another year or two for customers to actually be able to buy. so there's a lot to do yet to perfect the technology. there are some people who still say we're still a long way away. >> reporter: what about the unintended social consequences of technology? given google has hat such a tough time convincing communities of the behavior with the google glass device. >> i think that's going to be a big issue. if you've seen an oculus rift it's like wearing a gigantic plate in front of your face and you can't interact with the world that you're in. so that's one of the things that i think people are going to have to figure out athas they're using this. if you're in your living room and you put one of those on to enter a virtual world, you're not going to be able to interact with anybody else around you and certainly won't want to do it in
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the street or in public. it's going to be pretty strange to see you kind of completely tuning out the world. >> reporter: well, are there applications written for or to take advantage of virtual reality? we've seen examples of people wearing these that get over their fear of heights or posttraumatic stress disorder, but something for the mass audience, why would we want something like this? >> there are some specialized applications like you're talking about. the military uses it. i think the hope is that, eventually, in addition to social applications, sharing things with your friends, that you will be able to do distance learning, you will be able to participate in a classroom virtually from far away and interact with the teacher and other students as if you were all in the same room. medicine is a big area to teach medical students what it's like to do surgery or other medical procedures without actually having to cut open a human being
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or be there in person to witness it. so that's the idea that dream of virtual reality is that you will be able to do all of these things on a computer and feel like you're really doing them. >> reporter: just a business question, is there a facebook bubble or effect that's happening? they paid 19 billion for an app recently and a billion dollars for instagram a while ago and now this. >> many people in silicon valley are wondering the same thing. you're seeing the price tags for the startups to go higher and higher, $2 billion for a company with no product and a futuristic technology. facebook has a lot of money to spend now, though, so they see it as a cheap bet that this might be the technology of the future. >> reporter: all right, vindu goel from the new york times, thank you so much. >> thank you. >> woodruff: again, the major developments of the day. search teams kept digging in the
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washington state mudslide, as the death toll kept climbing. and president obama urged europeans to re-dedicate themselves to defending freedom in the face of russia's annexation of crimea. >> ifill: on the newshour online right now, for a large portion of the country, it's been a long, cold and snowy winter. so what does that wild weather look like from above? we animated three months of winter using satellite images taken once every hour. take a look, if you can bear, on our website, newshour.pbs.org. >> woodruff: and that's the newshour for tonight. on thursday, we'll look at president obama's first meeting with pope francis. i'm judy woodruff. >> ifill: and i'm gwen ifill. we'll see you on-line... and again here tomorrow evening. for all of us here at the pbs newshour, thank you and good night >> major funding for the pbs newshour has been provided by:
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>> this program was made possible by the corporation for public broadcasting. and by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you. captioning sponsored by macneil/lehrer productions captioned by media access group at wgbh access.wgbh.org 
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report" with tyler mathisen and susie gharib. brought to you in part by -- thestreet.com. featuring stephanie link who shares her investment strategies, stock picks and market insights with action alerts plus, the multimillion dollar portfolio she manages with jim cramer. you can learn more at thestreet.com/nbr. citi sinks as the federal reserve rejects the bank's capital plans and shares slide after the closing bell. short-term gain, long-term pain. black rock ceo larry fink tells every ceo in the s&p 500 to think twice before buying back stock and issuing dividends. why and is he right? odd couple? facebook shares tumble after a supplies acquisition of virtual reality headset maker oculus. now

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