tv Charlie Rose PBS February 4, 2017 12:00am-1:01am PST
>> rose: welcome to the program. we begin this evening with new conflict between the united states and iran. we talk to david sanger of the "new york times" and karim sadjadpour of the carnegie endowment for international peace. >> we are in the early stages of an escalation which could culminate in a military conflict either between the united states and iran or israel and iran. you know, i think the issue here is that iran argues that any new sanctions are a violation and abrogation of the nuclear deal, and they've said on several occasions that if the u.s. violates its end of the deal, then iran will reconstitute it's nuclear program, and i think i think it's going -- what we saw in the nuclear deal and
historically, the few instances in which iran has backed down under pressure, it's when it's faced against significant multi-lateral pressure. >> rose: and we look ahead to super bowl li with peter king of "sports illustrated." >> that is what we have been trying to figure out. at age 39, dan morino, jim kelly, john elway, they were all retired. peyton manning threw 11 touchdowns and 17 interceptions when he was 39 years old, his last year where he limped to a super bowl championship. but think about it, tom rady this year right now, 33 touchdowns, four interceptionings at age 39. now, a lot of people will make fun of brady. he eats pristinely. you know, for him, you know, a wild night is a bowl of avocado ice cream. so i think we're now seeing the result of all that for tom
brady. he simply is beating age as well as every other team in the n.f.l. >> rose: we conclude with raoul peck, the director with the new documentary about james baldwin. >> ten years ago, i decided to make this film because i felt that the world around me was changing. somehow we got lazy, and after the end of the civil rights movement, you know, things that we have monument, black history month, martin luther king day, as if everything was now perfect, and a new generation has started to come out, and i felt it was time that the words of james baldwin had to come back on the front line. >> rose: the u.s. in iran, the super bowl, and james baldwin, when we continue. >> rose: funding for "charlie rose" has been provided by the following:
>> and by bloomberg, a provider of multimedia news and information services worldwide. captioning sponsored by rose communications from our studios in new york city, this is charlie rose. >> rose: we begin tonight with iran. friday morning the trump administration announced new sanctions against iran. the move comes in response to the test firing from an iranian ballistic missile earlier in the week. the sanctions target 12 companies and 13 individuals with ties to iran's missile program or the country's revolutionary guard kountze force. joining me david sanger of the "new york times" and karim sadjadpour of the carnegie endowment for international peace. i am pleased to have them here this friday afternoon.
first i begin with david sanger. david, why are they doing this? will it be successful, and what will it achieve? >> well, charlie, they're doing this because they want to set a new tone and they want to set it right away. you heard from general flynn, mike flynn, the national security advisor, he issued a statement today in which he said the old method of washing a missile firing and then gathering the united nations general assembly or security council together to issue a pronouncement against iran, that those days were over and that was ineffective, so h he announce advise of sanctions that quite frankly looked a fair bit like the kind of sanctions the obama administration issued just a year ago. the difference was that, in announcing it, they revealed a bit more of what they knew about the networks of suppliers that the iranians have for their missile programs, blowing the
cover of a number of front companies, and signaling to the iranians, we know where you live and you're in a new era now where we can make your life a little more miserable. the question is what do they do after this? sanctions are within the 40-yardlines of how we know of what you do to deal with an adversary like iran. do they intercept shipping, take more aggressive actions within the gulf, do they step up the pressure in a way the iranians would feel forced to react? >> rose: when you look at all the controversy about the nuclear deal signed, all the critics would pounce on the deal that it does nothing about iranian behavior. and this new administration, talking about iranian behavior right away and linking it to the iran deal now specifically by talking about missiles.
will it have an impact on iranians or how will they react? >> i think iran's comfort zone is to have contained with the united states. the u.s. government made them uncomfortable with their overtures. the trump administration is now unpredictable for them. but iran has always liked to show the external pressure is not going to modify their behavior. they're not going to give in as a result of pressure. i think that what was key about the geopolitical context now is that, under obama, the united states managed to assemble a pretty robust international coalition to isolate iran financially, politically and force iran into a nuclear compromise. i think iran probably senses now with president trump in
washington and a president in tehran who's thought to be moderate, the prime minister who's thought to be reasonable, it's going to be much tougher for washington to assemble this broad, international coalition against iran, especially when you look at the context of the middle east, a region which is unraveling, and a lot of the countries around the world, especially china, russia, europe -- see, today's iran middle east is actually a force for stability and a tactical ally against the more nefarious force, which is i.s.i.s. so i think that iran probably feels that they have to, obviously, watch the first weeks of the trump administration carefully. but what happened under --
>> rose: explain what the u.s. say they violated. if they're doing the missile testing, what's the purpose of doing it? >> the purpose of doing the missile testing is to show with we're still here and for the iranian revolutionary guard corps and others who built their reputation inside iran by opposition to the united states showing that, despite the nuclear deal, they are continuing to muscle their way through the region. i think the very good question that karim raises here is do the iranians sense that no one's really going to join the united states in standing up to them here, partly because lots of countries in the region have missiles, and, so, a missile violation seems to many in the region to be a concern, but of
concern around the margins. i think, secondly, the iranians feel that they did a very good job in watering down the united nations resolution on missiles that was passed just days after the nuclear accord. you may remember this was negotiated july 2015, right after the nuclear accord was sealed, by john kerry and jay bad zarif, his iranian counterpart. mr. zarif was pleased that wording would change from prohibiting missile tests to merely calling upon iran to show restraint and not to launch any missile that could carry a nuclear weapon. so the iranian argument is this missile wasn't designed to carry a nuclear weapon. now, obviously, it could be modify to do so at some point in the future. so tare arguing there is no united nations security council
basis for any sanctions at all. just an hour or two ago, we heard the iranians promise they'd issue a set of countersanctions against american individuals and companies. those won't amount to much, but, politically, in iran, i think this could be significant in helping the hard liners once again have their favorite adversary in the fore. >> rose: michael flynn the national security advisor said even before announcing sanctions that the u.s. was putting iran on notice. philip gordon said "by issuing a warning so precise and in such a dramatic fashion, he has set himself and the the united states up for either an embarrassing retreat or a risky confrontation. are either of those likely, karim? >> charlie, i do think that we are in the early stages of an escalation which could culminate a military conflict either between the united states and
iran or israel and iran. you know, i think the issue here is that iran argues that any new sanctions are a violation, an abrogation of the nuclear deal, and they've said on several occasions that if the u.s. violates its end of the deal, then iran will reconstitute its nuclear program. again, i think it's going -- what we saw in the nuclear deal and historically, the few instances in which iran has backed down under pressure, it's when it's faced against significant multi-lateral pressure. the trump administration, so far, has shown, you know, limited ability to work well with allies, and, so, it appears it's an administration which doesn't really have a coherent foreign policy vision, an it's
coupled with these kind of emotional outbursts on twitter, taunts against not only countries like iran but also american allies. i think we do get in a very dangerous escalatory situation, and i would also add israel's threshold for taking military action against iran is lower than america's threshold, and whereas the obama administration always exercises restraint over israel and prime minister netanyahu and prevented them from taking military action against iran, trump has so far been very indulgent of prime minister netanyahu. so it may be whether the united states decides to take military action against iran's nuclear facilities down the road or whether the u.s. would be willing to provide israel a green light to do so. we're certainly not there yet, but i think we do seriously have to think about the risks of such an escalation. >> rose: is it clear they
cannot have the same impact they have had previously, that these sanctions will not, cannot -- will not have the same force that the previous sanctions did and, therefore, are doomed to failure? >> certainly, my view would be, if you look at these sanctions, they're frit narrow. they're against individual companies and individuals. the sanctions that brought iran to the table in the nuclear deal prevented iran from banking around the country -- around the world, prevented iran from delivering its oil in ports around the world. and, so, it had a broad effect on the iranian economy. these sanctions will not. >> rose: what is the attitude and how significant is it in the overall concept of trump foreign policy, the attitude toward iran and what they call radical islamic terrorism, that they see
this coming, that's how trump and his colleagues see the world shaping up? karim? >> it may be difficult to talk about a trump doctrine but we can talk about a steve bannon doctrine. if you look at his writings and media interviews in the past, he does believe the threat of islamic radicalism is the greatest threat the united states currently faces, as communism was during the cold war. i think one of the strategic mistakes they're making is gratuitously alienating people in the muslim world and islamic world and in particular iran. as we recall this executive order passed last week, it turned away thousands of iranians who are legitimate visa holders, iranian green
cardholders, and it caused great consternation in iran and amongst the iranians. there is a very prominent iranian community in the united states that's thriving and they have close ties with people in iran. i think in the past, the u.s. administrations including the george w. bush administration, they always tried to distinguish between the iranian regime and the iranian people, who are always thought to be the most pro american, modern population in today's middle east, and i think the trump administration is making a strategic mistake by lumping both the people and the regimes of the middle east of the islamic world into one category, and i do fear that they're actually going to strengthen islamic radicalism rather than reduce it. >> rose: david, to that point, i would love to have you comment on this, the idea is most of what is conceived to be i.s.i.l
and other aspect al quaida is mostly sunni muslim rather than sheena which is iranians, and the iranians, in fact, their f.m. spokesman said "it is a shame that the u.s. government instead of thanking the iranian nation for their continued fight against terrorism keeps repeating unfounded claims and adopts unwise policies that are effectively helping terrorist groups." the iranis have said many times how opposed they are, you know, to i.s.i.l and other sunni groups. >> well, i think you've gotten two of the contradictions in the trump foreign policy so far. number one is that while mr. trump talks a lot about terrorism and most of that, of course, is sunni-based, he tweets and occasionally comments on iran's influence in iraq and, of course, it's role in syria. on the other hand, by talking about cooperating with the
russians in syria, he's implicitly talking about having to cooperate with iran, which is obviously working with the russians pretty closely. there is a second contradiction, and i think it goes back to your earlier question to karim, which is that in the interviews that we did with president-elect or then candidate trump last year, there was none of the clash of civilization discussion. there was no talk about the united states coming -- battling for influence in the middle east with the iranians or battling for influence in asia with the chinese. that is bannon. the trump doctrine has been much more a we will pull back behind our borders if need be and strike out if anybody strikes at us. and no one has yet sorted out that contradiction in this white house. now, it's early yet, but we don't know yet whether the forces of confrontation represented by mr. bannon or the
forces of let's calm this down and try to manage it, which we assume to be the argument that rex tillerson will make, the new secretary of state, that jim mattis, the new secretary o secf defense will make, we don't know which one of those will win. >> rose: david, i know you have another appointment. thanks for joining us. >> great to be with you, charlie. >> rose: karim, one last question for you. when you look at this in terms of iran versus -- in its own struggle with the saudis for influence in the region, does it have any impact on that contest? >> absolutely. i think what the trump administration is keen on doing is resetting relations with america's traditional allies in the middle east, namely israel and saudi arabia, which means confronting iran and iran's proxies in the region, whether that's syria, yemen, iraq,
lebanon and elsewhere. so i think that, you know, among the countries in the world which are quite pleased by the trump administration, other gulf-arab country like saudi arabia and the u.a.e., whereas like obama where he tried to appeal to iran, the trump administration recognizes who america's real allies in the region are. so i think the chances of really reaching a resolution in a place like syria are made infinitely smaller if you don't have any cooperation from iran because iran is the chief backer of bashar al-assad. so i think it doesn't bode well for regional security to take a more antagonistic approach toward iran. that said, the obama administration tried hard for eight years to have a more cooperative relationship with
iran, and that wasn't tremendously successful either. so striking that right balance is very difficult and, ultimately, a lot of these conflicts are conflicts that simply have to be managed and contained and not really resolvable. >> rose: karim, thank you for joining us. >> thank you. >> rose: david sanger of the "new york times," karim sadjadpour, carnegie endowment for international peace. we'll be right back. >> rose: the new england patriots and the atlanta falcons will square off sunday. the patriots are vying for a fifth super bowl title in the tom brady and bill belichick era. if ngz wins, brady will surpass joe montana with the most super bowl rings by a q.b. joining me from houston is great peter king, seen your writer for "sports illustrated" and widely
regarded as america's premier writer. welcome. >> thanks very much, cheacialtion greetings from houston. >> rose: thanks for dressing up for the occasion. >> you're welcome. >> rose: bill bill check has had two weeks to get sz his team ready. does that make a difference? >> i think it does for a couple of reasons. number one, the vast majority of the faction, more than 90% have never been in a super bowl. you can never tell how they will react in the tunnel before the game. this will be the seventh super bowl for the patriots under bill belichick in new england. he's been to ten altogether as an assistant or coach. i'm not saying it's old hat.
with this two week gap between games, he understands what he can do to confound even the best offenses. that's why i think it's dangerous. time and again, you have seen bill belichick in a playoff game. since he's been in new england, he's won 24 playoff games. so time and again these great teams come up against this new england juggernaut, and bill belichick does something in a coaching way to confound even the best teams, and i would be surprised if he didn't throw some kind of curve pa ball that really surprises matt ryan and the atlanta falcons. >> rose: how well can the defense upset the game plan they have? >> and also, charlie, you know, i spoke about sort of how are the teams going to react coming into this game and obviously the
patriots have been here so often. the poor reporter for the football writers for the atlanta falcons practices was here a little bit ago on friday. one of the things that happened, i found myself standing with troy aikman of foxsports, the broadcasters of the game. so we were watching practice thursday, and i made mention to aikman that, you know, the one thing you just can't tell about a team is how they're going to react to the magnitude of this moment. oh, it's easy to say, oh, yeah, it's just another football game, but the fact is that most people, when they're getting ready to play a game like this, it doesn't feel like another football game. and aikman, who, to me, is one of the campion flat liners who ever played, you know, you never saw him sweat. so troy aikman said to me, here,
i'm supposed to be the solid guy, i'm supposed to be, you know, the very even keel guy. he said, before our first super bowl, i was in the tunnel about ready to go out about ten minutes before the game, and i am just hyperventilating. it really -- the moment really got to me, and he said, you know, you can't tell if the moment is going to get to a team, a first-time team. you can't tell three days before the game. it's just going to happen right before the game. >> rose: does tom brady this time have so much motivation that it gives him one more iningredient? >> i don't think he needs another ingredient, charlie. i don't think he needs some more hatred or another dart board with roger goodell's head on it or anything like that because he was suspend ford first four games of the season with the
infamous deflategate scandal of two years ago. i just don't think he needs more motivation. now, he will be motivated by that, certainly, but tom brady is the kind of guy that he's playing the jacksonville jaguars the third weekend of october, and he's going to treat same way as he treats this game. i know people scoff at that, but i've just been around brady too much. you know, the reason that this game is a monstrous game to tom brady is quite simply but a it's the next one. >> rose: what do we know about quinn? >> dan quinn, coach of the atlanta falcons. what's interesting, he coached in the super bowl three of the last four years because he was the seattle seahawks defensive coordinator when they feet the denver broncos and lost to tom brady and the patriots. so he is in his second year in atlanta as head coach, so this is three out of four years he's
coached in the super bowl. i think what really marks dan quinn is a very, very fast defense. you will see that on sunday. you will see -- you won't see many patriots running away from anybody on that atlanta defense, that's number one. and number two, i think you will see a guy who -- i don't think it's easy to not be intimidated by playing the patriots and by playing bill belichick. belichick, but i think dan quinn had pretty good success when they played the patriots in the super bowl two years ago, until the fourth quarter when injuries sort of piled up, and tom brady played great in the last two drives of the game and head the patriots to touchdowns to win the game. i think dan quinn used the element of speed and great pass rush against brady, so i'm sure
he's going to do the exact same thing in this game. >> rose: let's talk about individual performance we might look to beyond brady and matt ryan. what about julio jones? >> the funny thing about julio jones is he's playing hurt a little bit, and there have been times this year when he's been really ineffective. and the worst and phoniest story line about this week is the people who have said, hey, if bill bil belichick takes julio t it's over. in six games, the atlanta falcons are 6 and 0 and averaged 37 points a game so, clearly without julio jones, the falcons figured out ways to win. they have so many different offensive weapons. the key for them is going to be to get their running game which has been impactful the entire
year to stop bill belichick from bottling it up. it's easier said than done. bill bilbillbillhas done a grea. >> rose: in other words, if the running backs are doing their -- >> what the atlanta falcons wants to do is have long drives. they don't want tom brady on the field. the last thing you want to do is give tom brady nine or ten possessions in the game. if you give him the ball five times each half or six, i think you're just playing with fire. the amazing thing right now about tom brady, when you think
about it -- and this is something we've all been talking about and right figure out, at age 39, dan morino, jim kelly, john elway, they were all retired. peyton manning threw 11 touchdowns and 17 interceptions when he was 39 years old his last year when he limped to a super bowl championship. but think about it, tom brady, this year right now, 33 touchdowns, four interceptions at age 39. now, a lot of people will make fun of brady -- he eats pristinely -- you know, for him, a wild night is a bowl of avocado ice cream. so i think we're now seeing the result of all that for tom brady. he simply is beating age as well as every other team in the n.f.l. >> rose: is he, by definition, if he wins this thing, the super bowl, the greatest q.b. ever the play the game? >> charlie, i think he probably,
is but i'm always hesitant to do this because the n.f.l.'s 98 years old. so the super bowl's been played for 51 of those years. so, basically, half the time in n.f.l. history, the last 50 years is the super bowl era, and i think if he wins this game, you would have to consider him, especially his longevity has been amazing, you would have to consider him the best q.b. of the super bowl era. and if you want to consider him the best quarterback of all time, that's absolutely fine, but the one proviso of that -- and you would appreciate being a person of a certain age, okay, and so would i, even though i did not see otograham play, there's a quarterback named otto graham, played for the cleveland branles from 1946 to 1955, he reached the championship game of his league all ten years that he played. seven of those years, he quarterbacked his team, the cleveland browns, to the
championship. so he won seven titles, and he was in the championship game every year, and he was overall in that ten-year period the best q.b. in football statistically. so it's really hard to categorically say, yep, brady is better. brady certainly is the best. probably is the best in the last 50 years, but i think we have to include outto graham in the discussion. >> rose: is what brady has the ability to find and put the ball exactly where the receiver is as well as to have a quick release? >> well, i think what he does, charlie, is he's able to see the field in a very, very rare way, and what i mean by that is he's able to see the field before guys -- so let's say you've got four guys in your pass route, okay, and he knows when -- let's say julian edelman who probably will play a lot in the slot this
week, when julian edelman is two yards from coming out of the break that he's going to make, tom brady not only know which way he's going to break but he knows how the defender is going to respond to it. so tom brady doesn't throw the ball to julian edelman. tom brady will throw his ball to him while his back is still to tom brady. tom brady is just assuming julian edelman is going to come out of his cut, be in his spot, and the safety or cornerback, whoever is, going to be late coming over, and that's why he's so good, he anticipates that and works so long and hard with his receivers so they're always on the same page. that's why to me his accuracy and the knowledge of the roots with his receivers is why he's been throwing so few interceptions. >> rose: yet, at the same time, everybody expects matt ryan to be the m.v.p. this year. >> that's been kind of a controversial thing the whole year because tom brady missed
the first four games. the n.f.l. has awarded the mvp trophy 61 times, okay, and no player has ever missed as many as four games before and won the m.v.p. on the other side, you have matt ryan, obviously, who probably deserves the m.v.p., that's going to be given out saturday night here in houston, and i think he probably deserves it, but people can make the tom brady argument. i am going to disagree because i would vote for matt ryan, played 16 games and didn't quite have the defense all year that brady did, so, to me, i look at this and i look at these two guys and i would not be surprised if they end up one-two in the m.v.p. vote when it's announced saturday. >> rose: what's good about matt ryan, i mean really good? >> i think the fact, charlie, that, right now, he has more weapons of a high quality than
any player in football, he has an offensive coordinator named kyle shanahan who's going to with the next coach of the san francisco 49ers after this super bowl. and matt's a big guy who's never been a big run in the n.f.l. kyle came in a couple of years ago and said, hey, you're going to run more than you have, you're going to get out of the pocket. you're not going to be a sitting target anymore. so that has improved him a lot. the other thing, charlie, watching practice with the falcons the last three days, matt ryan is a commandant out there. nobody messes with matt ryan. you know, he's the most gentlemanly guy, very pleasant, nice, kisses all the babies, does all that, but you watch him out there, and he's got a little edge to him with his teammates.
you don't mess up on a pass route with matt ryan. you've seen it with tom brady over time but you really haven't seen it with ryan, but i do think that's the reputation that ryan is going to start to advance here in the next couple of years. >> rose: i think if the falcons can get to tom brady, they have a real shot in winning this thing. >> no question about it. brady is not like ryan. ryan ran for a 14-yard touchdown in a championship game. that's not tom brady's game. but the speed on the atlanta defense could really make it difficult for him if he is that sitting duck. so i think the key to this game is brady getting rid of the ball very, very quickly. a lot of short routes, you know, taking small chunks down the field. i'm got sure you're going to see that many electrifying plays in this game because i think especially new england, they want to matriculate the ball down the field in the words of
the old hank stram, they just want to take their time and make efficient plays rather than try to go for the home run ball. >> rose: peter king, thank you for being with us. i envy you being there for what i hope will be a very exciting game. >> charlie, my pleasure. thanks a lot. >> rose: back, stay with us. >> rose: james baldwin was one of the most heralded writers of the century. a new documentary from raoul peck "i am not your negro," the "times" calls the film a mesmerizing, cinematic experience, smart, thoughtful and disturbing. "i am not your negro" is nominated for academy award for best documentary feature and here is the film's trailer. >> if any white man in the world says give me liberty or give me death, the entire white world applauds.
if a black man says exactly the same thing, he is judged a criminal and treated like one, and everything possibly is down to make an example of this bad (bleep) so there won't be anymore like him. >> the story to have the meeting -- of the negro in america is the story of america. it is not a pretty story. ♪ i'm a black man in a white world ♪ >> apathy and ignorance, you don't know what's happening on the other side of the world because you don't want to know. >> in america, i was free only in battle. never free to rest. >> we need to take action. any kind of action by any means necessary. >> i need to speak to him. now they don't need us, they're going to kill us all off. ( gunfire ) >> there are days when you wonder what your role is in this
country and what your future is in it. i can't be a pessimist because i'm alive. the question you've got to ask yourself, the white population of this country's got to ask yourself is why was it necessary to have a (bleep) in the first place. i'm not a (bleep). i'm a man. but if you think i'm a (bleep), you need it, and you're going to find out why. the future of the country depends on that. >> rose: i am pleased to have director raoul peck at this table for the first time. welcome. >> thank you. >> rose: tell me how this began for you. >> it began very young when i read james baldwin the first time when i was around 17, i read "the fire next time" and it basically changed my life because suddenly i had an order
through which i could understand where i was, who i was, and it gave me an explanation to a lot of things that i was seeing but could not put a name on them, and since that time, i read all baldwin, and he has been a constant presence in my life. ten years ago, i decided to make this film because i felt the world around me was changing. somehow we got lazy, and after the end of the civil rights movement, you know, things that, you know, we had monument, we have black history month, martin luther king day, as if everything was now perfect, and a new generation has started to come out. i felt it was time that the words of james baldwin had to come back on the front line.
>> rose: had there been no major film about him? >> one film which was more of a biography, and i did not want to make a biographic film. i wanted to find a way to put the words themselves and to put baldwin himself facing the audience, that we could be confronted with his words, like many in his generation were when he was the great spokesman he was at the time. >> rose: how did james baldwin become james baldwin? >> well, it's a long story, but i think it's the man who always knew how to use his private, most intimate experience and linked to his incredible knowledge, self-taught knowledge, and use it to translate in his writing, and that's why he always rang very true and fruitful.
>> rose: you decided to make a documentary. you got samuel jackson to do the narration. give me the sense of the kind of film you felt you had to make. >> in fact, when i started the research, when i started to come back to all these books i have read throughout my life, i didn't know exactly what the film was going to be. i play around with a narrative approach and then with a mixed forum. it took me four years to really then come upon those pages about this book that he never wrote with the title "remember this house," and those pages were getting to me -- given to me by gloria, james baldwin's younger sister, who's running the eestate. in that book, for a filmmaker to discover the notice of a
manuscript and the book was never written, so it was like a mystery book, and then i got my angle. it means i was going to look throughout baldwin's body of work and find that unwritten book, and that was the whole idea of the film. >> rose: find the unwritten book and make it a film. >> exactly. >> rose: baldwin said not i've thin that's faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced. >> absolutely. absolutely. that's something that can fortunately -- you know, the kind of separation that we have in this country is such that each one of us can live through his whole life without having to see the other. you know, if you live in manhattan, you know, you can live your daily life without being confronted with what is happening in the rest of the
country. in particular, those last 30 years -- >> rose: we began to realize some arts of the country, other parts of it see a very different view. >> exactly, and we are confronted with this truth. and baldwin tries to confront us with this reality and give us our responsibility back because what he means by that is we are all responsible, wherever we stand in that divide, and only we the people can change it, and if we accept to face it. >> rose: he wanted to be an observer, a witness rather than a participant. >> yeah, exactly. well, he was both because, in order to be a witness, you have to be where it's happening. >> rose: right. but he was torn between, you know, the sort of, you know, peaceful atmosphere that a writer needs to write and the
incredible activity that you have when you're on the field, and he was always torn between those two moments, but he felt that he had to be where it was happening in order to report about it, in order to understand what was going on. he went to great lengths to sit down with the young boys and girls who were going in those schools, spending their whole day alone inside those schools, and he spent time with the white teacher and tried to understand what was going through his head, and he gave us that in the form of a beautiful essay, and that's what he knew how to do because you could understand the very core of this country because he went through -- and he tells you the story through human experience. it's not, you know, an
intellectual discourse. it's always about human being and emotions. >> rose: this is james baldwin talking about the effect of segregation in the united states from the film. >> most of the white americans i've ever encountered, really, had a negro friend or maid or somebody in high school, but they rarely, after school was over, you know, came to my kitchen. you know, we were segregated from the schoolhouse door. therefore, he does not know what it was like for me to leave my house and go to school. doesn't know how to negroes live. it comes as a great surprise to kennedy and others in the country. i'm sure they have nothing against negroes, that's not the question. the the question is really out of apathy and ignorance which is the price of segregation.
segregation means you don't know what's happening on the other side of the world because you don't want to know. >> i was in some ways in those years without entirely realizing it the great black hope of the great white father. i was not a racist -- or so i thought. >> rose: you're using that as a perfect example. you're using him on tape or film, and then just his words. you're not using commentary, other people talking about james baldwin. >> well, that was the project from the start, you know. i didn't want to have any talking heads, as we call it, any expert, any scholar -- >> rose: explainers. -- explaining or interpreting baldwin. i wanted to have baldwin's words because there is, in this film, only baldwin's words. there isn't one single line i wrote. >> rose: and the reason is? to get that experience of having baldwin raw and to be
confronted with him, i wanted the audience to be in front of those words, in front of this man's face who is so convincing, so personal, so intimate, i wanted to share that experience that i had throughout my life. >> rose: what was the quality of his voice and his writing that made him so penetrating to those who knew of him? >> i think it's his incredible humanism, because he loved human beings, whether you were black or white. he wanted to have a direct contact with you. he didn't ask you about your color first. he wondered what do you have in your belly, in your guts, who are you. and, so, he was always open for an encounter, you know, in his traveling abroad, you know. he spent time in france, but he also spent a lot of time in turkey. you know, what african-american would find i turkey? but he had great friends there.
>> rose: did your experience as a haitian give you a perspective on him? >> yes, yes, it did help me because i left haiti when i was eight. my father went to work in the congo. changing from your birth place to another country or even another continent gives you a very different perspective to when you look back home or when you look back to a country like the u.s.a., which i also came, you know, when i was 12 and i went to school here for a year. it gives you the distance that you need, you know, to really see what is important and what is less important and, you know, i have a lot of american friends who you actually understood what being an american is, once they were abroad, because sendly, you
know, even somebody like baldwin, when he went to france, he was not black first. he was first an american p then black. so it takes away a lot of the daily pressure that you can have in your daily confrontation with racism, or, you know, the attention you have to have, the carefulness that you have to have every minute when you're living, you know, between harlem and the village. >> rose: here's another clip in which he's talking about white america and the negro myth. >> the truth is, what this country does not know what to do with its black population, like the final solution. >> negro's never been as docile
as white americans want them to be. that was a myth. we were not seen dancing. we were trying to keep alive and survive. we've never been happy in this place. one of the most terrible things is, whether i like it or not, i am an american. my school was the streets of new york city. my frame of reference was george washington and john wayne. but, you know, i was a child, and a child in the eyes of the world, there's nothing else, and you are formed by what you see and the choices you have to make and the way you discover what it means to be black in new york. >> rose: how old was he when he died? >> he was age 67, i think. 65 or 67, yeah. he had cancer, and he died in his house in the south of
france. >> rose: and what would he have said was his primary contribution? >> i don't know. i think he's a man that was never satisfied, you know. he was always writing on very -- a lot of different things, you know, plays, a screenplay, a novel, essays, short stories, he was a multi-tacking person. on the same taicialtion there was always a pile on which he was working and would leave for two or three months and come back. sometimes he would mix two manuscripts and go in totally different directions. in fact, in my research, i could, you know, because i was looking for a specific phrase, and i could find that same phrase differently in another document, but that was better for the film, for the dialogue
of the film. so i would use it. so i learned to see how his construction were done and over a long period of time, you know. and a lot of writers work like that, you know. it's like they're always reused a lot of ideas until they find the right place to put it. >> rose: wh who were his close friend in the white literary community? >> he knew most of them, like truman capote, of course, and someone like marily marlon brana great friend. they knew each other when both of them were not famous, and marlon used to visit baldwin and just crash in his bedroom two days because he wanted to be away from the hollywood circus. so he had great friends, black and white, and the artists, a
lot of musicians. and there was, by the way, a great sense of solidarity among black artists, writers, musicians, they knew each other. he had been a great elder for myia angelou and all those. he felt, you know, a sort of responsibility for them. even the younger, more radical leadership, people like angela davis, he wrote a beautiful essay when angela davis was in prison. and some of the leadership in the black panther were somehow critical of him at some point, but he kept close to them, like the elder, the older brother he was, you know, he raised money for them, he visited them in prison. so he had really a role, and many other people, like harry belafonte, sidney poitier, they were really careful and protective of the younger generation. >> rose: do you see something of his voice in people like
ta-nehisi coates? >> yes,ta na,ta nay, ta-nehisi a writer. baldwin, we don't understand enough how baldwin is one of the greatest american writers in this century because he wrote this at a time when nobody else would dare. writing a couple about mixed gay couple in giovanni's room was unprecedented, and being a black author as well. so he opened many, many doors, and he changed the life of many,
many young men and women, both white and black and not only in this country but elsewhere, and he changed my life as well. >> rose: raoul, thank you for being here. >> thank you for inviting me here. >> rose: "i am not your negro" is nominated for academy award for best documentary feature. thank you for joining us. see you next time. for more about this program and earlier episodes, visit us online at pbs.org and charlierose.com. captioning sponsored by rose communications captioned by media access group at wgbh access.wgbh.org
. hello and welcome to kqed "newsroom." coming up, silicon valley's response to president trump's executive order on immigration. a report from the border from one of our reporters who's been in san diego all week. plus, legendary athletes discuss the role of politics in sports. first, we sit down with ro khana who defeated mike honda for a congressional seat last november. he represents california's 17th district including silicon valley. the son of immigrants himself, he spoke out against the executive order that not only temporarily bars visitors from seven nations but also blocks refugees from syria indefinitely. kqed's senior editor of california politics and gove