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tv   PBS News Hour Weekend  PBS  April 9, 2016 5:30pm-6:01pm PDT

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captioning sponsored by wnet >> sreenivasan: on this edition for saturday, april 9: secretary of state john kerry makes a surprise visit to afghanistan; in our signature segment, from kenya, how the islamic extremist group al-shabab recruits young men into the fight; and a look at new laws that block anti- discrimination measures for gay, lesbian and transgender people. next on pbs newshour weekend. >> pbs newshour weekend is made possible by: lewis b. and louise hirschfeld cullman. bernard and irene schwartz. judy and josh weston. the cheryl and philip milstein family. the citi foundation. supporting innovation and enabling urban progress. the john and helen glessner family trust. supporting trustworthy
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journalism that informs and inspires. sue and edgar wachenheim, iii. corporate funding is provided by mutual of america-- designing customized individual and group retirement products. that's why we are your retirement company. additional support has been provided by: and by the corporation for public broadcasting, and by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you. from the tisch wnet studios at lincoln center in new york, hari sreenivasan. >> sreenivasan: good evening, and thanks for joining us. secretary of state john kerry made a surprise visit to afghanistan today in an attempt to ease escalating political tensions there and prolong a power-sharing agreement he brokered two years ago. secretary kerry met with afghan president ashraf ghani, whose security forces control 70% of the country's territory but are fighting a resurgent taliban which was initially toppled by the u.s.-led invasion in 2001. kerry also met with ghani's
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political rival, abdullah abdullah, who is chief executive of the unity government. kerry later tweeted: the "u.s. continues to support sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity of self- reliant, democratic afghanistan." kerry visited troops serving a"" camp resolute support" in kabul to thank them for their service. the u.s. plans to withdraw nearly half of the 10,000 troops stationed in afghanistan next year. joining me now via skype from kabul, afghanistan, to discuss secretary john kerry's trip is reuters' state department correspondent, arshad mohammed. so, first, it seems that there are two sets of problems that keri and the afghans are trying to tackle. on the domestic side and the big giant security concerns with the taliban now headed into its 15th year? >> reporter: that's exactly right. on the political side the problem, essentially, is whether the current national unity
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governor between president ghani and chief executive abdullah, can continue on beyond what's widely believed to be the end of its two-year kind of mandate in september. the security problems are well known. the taliban has been resurgent over the last year. the fighting season is about to start again. and the u.s. government is planning to cut the number of its troops to 5500 from 9800 toward the end of this year. >> sreenivasan: so what happens on that political front come september? does that mean the government dissolves or collapses? >> reporter: well there's a lot of ambiguity about what exactly happens. what keri today said-- and he's the person who brokered the agreement that created the unity government-- from his point of view it doesn't need to end-- or it doesn't end in two years, that there's no specific termination date. what he's essentially and what u.s. officials are really trying to do here is get the afghan politicians, not just ghani and abdull abut the opposition
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politicians associated with former president karzai to try to work out some kind of an agreement to keep the government going beyond september. that's especially important because in october, aid donors are going to meet in belgium and decide how much aid to give to afghanistan and they're not going to want to give money if it isn't clear an established government is in place to spend the money wisely. >> sreenivasan: secretary keri had a similar trip in baghdad. there the common foe is isis. >> again, he's trying to push iraqi politicians to achieve consensus. there it's trying to craft a cabinet for the iraqi government that enough of the politicians can live with. you need to have in general a functioning, somewhat cohe was government, to prosecute the war against the islamic state ill tants in iraq or against the
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taliban here in afghanistan. >> sreenivasan: now, when you're on these long plane rides with him and you have access to the secretary, do you ever see his optimism waning? when you think about this, thousands of american lives have been lost. it's been now 15 years. we've spent probably a twowm of trillion dollars in iraq and afghanistan and here we are in situations where both of the countries, parts of them, are completely lawless. >> my impression is most secretaries of state are optimistic because that's part of their job. their job is to try to find ways to solve problems. we do see secretary keri on the plane off the record sometimes. i can't talk about that. but most secretaries of state i've covered tend to be looking for solutions rather than wringing their hands over the problems. >> sreenivasan: all right arshad mohammed joining us today via skype.
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>> sreenivasan: north korea claims it has successfully tested an engine for a long- range missile that could reach the united states. the state-run news channel showed pictures today of north korean leader kim jong un visiting the test site. u.s. officials say there's no proof the test worked. south korea added the north is years away from developing intercontinental missiles. north korea launched a medium- range ballistic missile last month and conducted a nuclear weapons test in january. militants from the islamic state group, or isis, have freed most of the 300 cement factory workers the group kidnapped three days ago in syria. video released today showed the men walking down a road near damascus. the british-based syrian observatory for human rights said all but 30 of the men were released, but isis had killed at least four non-muslim captives. in belgium, federal prosecutors say the suspect arrested yesterday has confessed. he is the third man seen in security video right before the isis terrorist attack on the brussels airport. the suspect, mohamed abrini, had been described as the "man in the hat." belgium police are detaining five other men suspected of ties
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to the march 22 suicide bombings that killed 32 people at the airport and a central brussels train station. britain's opposition labor party is demanding prime minister david cameron give a full accounting of his financial dealings to parliament on monday. this comes after the "panama papers," published in newspapers during the last week, revealed cameron had owned shares in a bahamas-based trust from 1997 to 2010 and profited $30,000 when he sold them. in a speech before his conservative party today in london, cameron admitted he had mishandled questions about the investment which he inherited from his late father, a stockbroker and client of the panama law firm at the center of the leaked "papers." >> i know that there are lessons to learn, and i will learn them. and don't blame number 10 downing street or nameless advisors. blame me, and i will learn the lessons. >> sreenivasan: cameron said he will release six years of tax returns to prove he paid all the taxes owed, and promised to crack down on tax evasion in the
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u.k. federal prosecutors say dennis hastert, a former republican speaker of the u.s. house of representatives, molested at least four teenage boys while he was a wrestling coach at an illinois high school from 1965 to 1981. prosecutors revealed the details for the first time in a pre- sentencing document filed in court late yesterday. hastert can't be charged with sexual abuse due to the statute of limitations, but he has plead guilty to structuring bank withdrawals in small increments to pay $1.7 million cash in hush money to one victim who was 14 when hastert abused him. prosecutors are asking for six months in prison when hastert, who is 74, is sentenced on april 27. hastert, seeking probation, said in a court filing he is" profoundly sorry" for his conduct. he spent 20 years in the house and was speaker from 1999 to 2007. in the presidential race,
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wyoming democrats held caucuses in the presidential race it's now seven in a row for bernie sanders. the vermont senator won today's democratic caucuses in wyoming and stood to gain a slim majority in the state's 14 pledged delegates to the national convention in july. sanders and hillary clinton campaigned in new york today ahead of the april 19 primary there. she still leads him by more than 200 pledged delegates. texas senator ted cruz swept 21 delegates in caucuses yesterday. you can follow all the results online with us at pbs.org/newshour. >> sreenivasan: bruce springsteen and his e-street band have cancelled their concert scheduled for tomorrow in greensboro, north carolina, to protest the state's new law blocking anti-discrimination measures for gay, lesbian and transgender people.
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springsteen said the law overturns progress in recognizing the human rights of all people. his boycott is one of growing number of economic hits to north carolina and other states adopting similar laws. joining me now to discuss that is "politico" reporter kevin robillard. how significant has this been for north carolina? i mean, it's been bad press for them all week. does this make an economic impact? >> clierl, it's starting to have one. last night, there were some reports from the north carolina media that, you know, significant numbers of conventions were either cancelling or reconsidering going to north carolina, which is something that translated to, you know, the thousands, potentially the tens of thousands in hotel room stays. and, you know, chances are when you're staying in it a hotel you're also going out to eat and, you know, purchasing things at nearby stores for your family or whatever. so, yeah, this is something that has a ripple effect when, you know, these boycotts or decisions not to go to north carolina are start stacking up.
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>> sreenivasan: i heard the n.b.a. all-star game is supposed to be in charlotte last year and even charles barkley is asking for it to be moved, a former player and commentator. and paypal pulled the opening of a 400-person facility in the state. >> yeah, that was a really significant one because, also, one thing that every state is trying to do is trying to woo tech companies like paypal to their state. if these tech companies in particular make a big stand on this, that's something that could really discourage governors from passing these slars laws. you have seen democrats put out their hands and say, hey, paypal, come here," the democratic governor of montana said paypal we'll come up with a tax package for to you move here instead of moving to north carolina. >> sreenivasan: what is also interesting is it seems to pit the two different sides of the republican paerkt, the business
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side versus the conservative side. >> this is an ongoing fight between the republican party. these wings are going to continue to class on what the republican party should prioritize. but these are coming into direct conflict, and that's really a problem fair lot of republicans because the social conservatives tend to provide sort of grass roots of the republican party. they're the republican party's most reliable voters. but the business community is, quite frankly, where most of the money funding the republican party comes from. and that's their biggest source of money so they can air tv ads and whatnot. it really is a situation if you're a republican politician don't want to anger either one of these groups. so far in this fight, the business community is winning just because they seem to have the economic leverage and you have seen it used in north carolina and you saw it used very well in indiana, which had a similar controversy last year. >> sreenivasan: does this trickle up, at least on a national scale, either in the presidential election or other, let's say, gubernatorial elections around the country? >> so, in the presidential election, so far, it hasn't really impacted the g.o.p.
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primary all that much. that sailed, at this point, a majority of americans do support gay rights, and it hurts the image of the republican party in general. so that's something that, you know, don't be surprised if you see hillary clinton really going out of her way to speak out against laws like this if she becomes the general election nominee. as for gubernatorial races, yeah, there's really going to be two on the ballot in the fall where there is really going to be the central issue. pat mccrory from north carolina supfor reelection in november. he is facing the attorney general the of north carolina, roy cooper. and in indiana, which, again, had a very similar controversy last year, mike pence is facing a democrat named john gregg. both of those are expected to be very, very contested elections and two of the closest governors' races in the country and this might turn out to be the decisive issue in both of them. >> sreenivasan: politico reporter kevin robillard joining us from washington. thanks so much. >> great doob on.
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>> sreenivasan: tonight, we bring you the second part of our four-part newshour series," inside kenya." for a decade, al-shabab, an al qaeda-linked militant group based in somalia, has launched terror attacks in kenya, its neighbor to the south. al-shabab was responsible for the 2013 attack on the westgate mall in kenya's capital, nairobi, an attack that killed 67 people. it was also responsible for last year's attack on garissa university in kenya that killed more than 120. the u.s. military estimates al- shabab has enlisted 5,000 men, and kenya contributes more foreign fighters to al-shabab than any other country. with the help of the pulitzer center on crisis reporting, special correspondent nick schifrin and producer zach fannin went to kenya, where they met up with al-shabab recruits. in our signature segment, schiffrin reports on why some young men join the group and on efforts to get them out. >> reporter: in the pumwani slum on the edge of nairobi, radicals
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find fertile ground and willing recruits, including these three kenyan muslims. each requested we change their names and tape from the back or side. they fear the police and al- shabab soldiers they used to fight with. >> we're supposed to, when we see a policeman, to kill him right there. >> you should die fighting for islam. >> reporter: do you remember your first big battle with al- shabab? >> we carried out an ambush against ethiopian forces near a river. >> reporter: they were all praying at the building towering over the slum, the pumwani riyadh mosque, when, in 2007, this man, sheikh ahmed iman ali, took power. he was a young and charismatic kenyan preacher. his followers embraced him, including mohammad. >> those two years that sheik ahmed iman was there, he woke us up. >> reporter: in 2009, sheik iman left the mosque to lead al- shabab's propaganda arm, but not before he had radicalized perhaps hundreds of kenyans with
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a message of economic empowerment, including hasan. >> his preachings were popular. most of the youths felt that he was genuinely talking for them and teaching them. he was preying on the most vulnerable people because most of the youths in pumwani, they were and they are still living in abject poverty. >> reporter: abdul says he too was enticed by money. >> we were going sometimes hungry. my siblings were hungry. >> reporter: as a teenager, he had become a thief to afford food. what did you use to do on these streets right here? >> we were mugging people like you. we were carjacking public vehicles. >> reporter: after being arrested and jailed, abdul learned about violent jihad from fellow kenyan prisoners who'd fought with al-shabab in somalia. >> these people were returnees from somalia. they started talking, how their business was good.
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>> reporter: their business was al-shabab. they convinced abdul, a recent muslim convert, that fighting in somalia was lucrative. he was given $100 to join and $400 in each successive payment. that was good money for you, right? >> mostly what inspired me to go there was money and to be where the police of kenya won't get me. the police wanted to kill. i was their target. >> reporter: that was sheikh iman's second inroad, using propaganda videos to identify kenyan police as oppressors. >> if muslim clerics in kenya stood for truth, they should have announced jihad long ago as muslims were being oppressed. >> reporter: this police officer, whom we granted anonymity, admits he stole from muslims who couldn't defend themselves as a way to supplement low income. >> looting of property, extorting money from those
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arrested. >> reporter: so you believe that your work increased radicalization. >> of course it increased because it was like the government was targeting muslims alone. >> reporter: al-shabab portrays kenya as a predominantly christian nation that oppresses muslims. sheik iman promises revenge in the name of islam. >> the day they decide to come out for a face to face battle, i am going to put away my ak-47 inside and take out my sword. these fellows know nothing about battle. >> reporter: that message of revenge and empowerment lured mohamed to join al-shabab. >> the oppression that was taking place could not be eradicated through words. the only response was to take up arms to fight the oppression. >> reporter: this is called little mogadishu? >> yeah. >> reporter: community organizer robert ochola heard about sheikh iman's radicalization campaign and started a group to fight it. >> it's a battle. it's a battle of hearts and minds, and it depends on who will offer these people you are
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fighting for more. >> reporter: all around him, he sees the incubators of radicalism-- muslims living with poverty, illiteracy, hopelessness. >> when you have nothing, you don't have anything to lose. when you've dropped out of school, probably in primary school, you know, your mind is somehow... it's closed in a box. and then comes in somebody feeds and fills up your mind with some radical things. >> reporter: ochola hosts community events designed to combat al-shabab's appeals. speakers discuss the value of honest work and moderate islam. that message turned around abdul before he could make it to somalia. >> that imam was the one who made me leave all my burdens. i was telling him what we were taught. he told me that's not islam religion. >> reporter: ochola provides abdul and other young men what this community often lacks: positive role models. >> i thought he was somebody i can trust. maybe i felt him in my heart.
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>> in ten, 20 years, we're going to have so many mentors in the community that whoever comes up with a negative narrative will be hitting a wall. >> reporter: robert hosts a radio show to reach these men and attract would-be mentors so fewer youth from pumwani die fighting in somalia. >> we've lost people we know, not people that somebody else knows-- people we literally interacted with. to us, it's practical. it's not theoretical. so, we come from a ground point of view. >> reporter: and not only is it practical, not theoretical, but it's also literally life and death. >> it's life and death, yeah. >> reporter: how many friends have you buried? >> more than 500. this is known as abdul aziz. there is another one there of my brother call abdul sanka. >> reporter: abdul's final rejection of al-shabab came after burying one too many friends. >> sometimes i come here in this cemetery, and i just call myself
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lucky. even now, even if i touch my heart, it's running. >> reporter: mohamed says he left al-shabab when his leaders in somalia treated kenyans as second class recruits and withheld weapons from kenyan recruits. >> there was no equality. i went thinking i would find justice, but that didn't happen. >> reporter: today, more than six years after sheikh iman left, the pumwani riyadh mosque is trying to erase his legacy. a madrassa teaches elementary school kids mainstream religious lessons, a secular school teaches three- to six-year-olds, and a soup kitchen offers much needed free food. the mosque de-radicalizes with moderate preaching and job training. imam juma mohamed says they offer resources the government fails to deliver. >> ( translated ): the government is neglecting us as
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if they were saying, "because you are muslim, if you want to die, you die here." they don't support us. >> reporter: and that means even if the mosque no longer preaches violence, al-shabab can still exploit the same roads to radicalism. >> all we offer them is hope, hope for a better future. the other side is giving them immediate gratification, giving them... providing for their food, clothing, shelter, comradeship. >> people are still vulnerable to recruitment because it has moved from the mosque to internet. like, the other day, mohammad iman posted on youtube, talking to the youths and telling them to join them. >> reporter: and today, that message of recruitment is still popular? >> it is. it is popular. >> sreenivasan: learn more about on monday's newshour, "inside kenya" continues with a look at corruption and how it seeps into every facet of government and private business.
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learn more about al-shabab, including the group's origins and history. read our primer online at www.pbs.org/newshour. >> this is pbs nrwshour weekend saturday. >> sreenivasan: the senate intelligence committee is drafting a bill to require companies like apple to assist law enforcement after a judge grants a warrant to unlock encrypted smartphones for access to evidence. the f.b.i. wants that tool for terrorism investigations, but so do local police and prosecutors to solve cases, as we reported in last week's signature segment about an unsolved murder in louisiana. many viewers like you took the opportunity to comment on that story and the debate on our web site and our facebook page. carol harris king posted this:" just like when getting a search warrant to search property, a search warrant should be all that is needed to unlock the phone." jim routhier added: "no one argues with the right of
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government to examine a phone with a proper warrant. just don't ask private industry to do the job of police by breaking into the phone for law enforcement." carolyn adessa disagreed, saying: "no back doors to our phones by government agencies, thank you very much. it's just a smokescreen for invasion of privacy." and there was this comment from maggie dooley: "the issue is not even privacy, it's more about trust. do i trust law enforcement, the judicial system, the government to act in a responsible manner? sadly, the answer is no." neal lewis said, simply: "open those phones so the evidence can be used to prosecute criminals. some of the privacy advocates are just paranoid." and finally, there was this, from rachel kent: "this is why a trusted loved one should have knowledge of your pass codes." as always, we welcome your comments online at www.pbs./newshour, on our facebook page, or tweet us @newshour.
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>> on sunday, a new path to appeal convictions based on flawed scientific evidence. >> it has proven we have numerous people, maybe large numbers nationwide, wrongfully convicted. >> sreenivasan: on the next pbs newshour weekend. timely, for the first time in nearly a century, it's about to cost less to mail a letter in the united states. tomorrow, the price of a first class stamp goes from 49 to 47 cents. the first drop since 1919. the postal service opposed the change imposed by an independent commission and projects it will lose $2 billion in revenue this year as a result. that's it for this edition of pbs newshour weekend. i'm hari sreenivasan. have a good night. captioning sponsored by wnet captioned by media access group at wgbh access.wgbh.org >> pbs newshour weekend is made possible by: lewis b. and louise hirschfeld cullman. bernard and irene schwartz.
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judy and josh weston. the cheryl and philip milstein family. the citi foundation-- supporting innovation and enabling urban progress. the john and helen glessner family trust-- supporting trustworthy journalism that informs and inspires. sue and edgar wachenheim, iii. corporate funding is provided by mutual of america-- designing customized individual and group retirement products. that's why we are your retirement company. additional support has been provided by: and by the corporation for public broadcasting, and by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you.
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