tv Democracy Now LINKTV July 18, 2013 8:00am-9:01am PDT
07/18/13 07/18/13 [captioning made possible by democracy now!] >> from pacifica, this is democracy now! i also have the capability without any warner law to search for, sees, and read your communications. anyone's communications at any time. >> as the nsa leaker edward stranded inins moscow, congress holds its second major hearing to the agency's bulk collection of americans communications. >> the government cannot provide a clear public explanation for
how its program is consistent with the statutes, then it must stop collecting this information immediately. >> we will get the latest on how the nsa is collecting it all with guardian columnist glenn greenwald, who first published edward snowden's revelations. in the world marks former south african president nelson mandela's 95th birth day. >> i am wishing you a happy birthday and many more. >> we will go to johannesburg were longtime south african activist trevor ngwane takes us on a tour of an look at a new film that follows three young singers at the university of cape town's opera school, a place that was off-limits to their parents during the time of apartheid. all of that and more coming up.
this is democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm juan gonzalez. morrow.dman will be ba the national security agency has admitted its collection of phone and internet data exceeds what it has previously disclosed. testify before congress, the deputy director revealed and was can perform what is called a second or third hop query that moves from suspected terrorists to the people they communicate with and then to others those people are in contact with and beyond. we will have more on nsa with glenn greenwald after the headlines. people were arrested north of los angeles wednesday night at a protest over the acquittal of george zimmerman. the rally comes ahead of nationwide justice for trayvon actions and over 100 cities this weekend. a federal appeals court has overruled a lower court's decision to block a controversial statute that
authorized indefinite detention. last year, judge katherine forrest struck down a provision in the national defense act, or in daa, authorizing the imprisonment of anyone deemed a terrorism suspect anywhere in the world without charge or trial. a group has brought the case arguing the provision was so broad it could easily on their freedom of speech. on wednesday, a three-judge panel ruled the plaintiffs lacked proper standing to challenge the law and invalidated the injunction. the obama administration has won a court decision allowing the continued genitals searches of prisoners at guantánamo bay. federal judge royce lamberth ordered a halt to the caucus last week, really the searches were aimed at hindering prisoners access to legal counsel. on wednesday, federal appeals court granted an emergency motion freezing his decision. al qaeda's branch in yemen has
confirmed the killing of its number two leader in a u.s. drone strike last year. says he died in a novemberattac. ago on some open a after being captured in afghanistan and released in 2007 to saudi arabia, i went on to yemen. the health of former south african president nelson mandela is reportedly improving as south africans and people around the world market is 95th birthday. a family member says he has made dramatic progress since being hospitalized last month for a recurring infection. we will have more on his 95th earth day later in the broadcast area did tens of thousands of people have rallied in egypt today with both supporters and opponents announcing president morsi holding a rival protests. the interim egyptian government is facing growing international pressure for his release.
a visit to cairo, european union foreign-policy chief catherine ashton said morsi should be set free. announced a new round of settlement construction in the occupied west bank. on wednesday, the israeli government approved the building of more than 700 homes outside of israel's internationally recognized 1960 seven borders. the move comes as john kerry continues an effort to renew israeli-palestinian peace talks for the first time since 2010. speaking in jordan, john kerry said he thinks israel should consider the long-standing arab league peace initiative that pledges normalized relations and full recognition if israel withdraws completely from the occupied territories. look hard atds to this initiative, which promises nationseace with 22 air and 35 muslim nations. that aref 57 nations
standing and waiting for the possibility of making peace with israel. >> israel has long dismissed the original arab peace offer because it wants to keep the large settlement blocs in the occupied west bank. the european union meanwhile has announced a new policy aimed at cutting ties with israeli institutions linked to the settlements. the eu will ban dealings with any israeli entity that operates on occupied palestinian land. such groups would be barred from receiving eu grants, prices, and loans. indiats have erupted in after a poisonous school meal left at least 25 children dead and dozens hospitalized. investigators say they believe the meals were contaminated with insecticide. the food was provided under a nationwide program feeding tens of millions of children. asked the una's security council for assistance after intercepting a north korean ship carrying military supplies from cuba.
animosities to the vessel last week after a standoff with its crew. the ship was reportedly carrying missile equipment and other weaponry that cuba has described as obsolete and was being sent to north korea for repair. panamanian security minister mulino said the cargo will be handed over to the united nations. expecting a representative of the security council of the united nations that are invited a request of the president and the minister, our ambassador in the human human alreadythe standing the invitation [indiscernible] to determine what this is all
about. the ship's crew facing charges for transporting dangerous cargo. u.n. secretary-general ban ki- moon says you you and officials will look into whether the shipment violates the international sanctions on the north korean regime. a list provided by cuba shows the weaponry dates back to the soviet era, bolstering its claim the shipment was meant for repairs. lawmakers in britain have voted to legalize gay marriage beginning next year. britain becomes the 15th country to equalize marriage, joining recent countries including france, uruguay, and new zealand. tosident obama's nominee become the next u.s. ambassador, samantha power, appeared before senate confirmation hearing on wednesday. power told lawmakers that you and in action on syria marks a disgrace. she also pledged to continue
long-standing u.s. support for israeli government policies at the united nations. >> we see the absurdity of chairing the conference and the response to this slaughter in syria, a disgrace that history harshly.e the united states has no greater friend in the world in the state of israel and we share security interest and core values and have a special relationship with israel read and yet the general assembly and human rights council continue to pass one- sided resolutions condemning israel. >> power circuits obama senior foreign-policy adviser during first run for the white house before being forced to resign for calling hillary clinton a monster. she's expected to easily win approval. review of death penalty convictions has found many cases where defendants were implicated with saturated scientific testimony. according to the washington post, the fbi has identified the cases as among 120 questionable
convictions to emerge from the sweeping review that began last summer read the findings prompted a last-minute stay of execution in the case of mississippi prisoner willie jerome manning earlier this year. the reviews full results are expected next month. reached abers have bipartisan agreement that could reverse the doubling of interest rates on federally subsidized interest loans. it climbed to 6.8% earlier this month after congress failed to reach a deal to avoid the hike. under the new agreement, students could see a lower rate through 2015, but then see those rates jump as they become attached to financial markets. a vote on the proposal could come as early as today. magazine rolling stone has sparked controversy after featuring the boston bombing suspect dzhokhar tsarnaev on the cover of its latest issue area did the photo accompanies an in- depth story that rolling stone calls --
"a riveting and heartbreaking account of how a charming kid with a bright future become a monster." on wednesday, boston mayor lashed out at rolling stone. we hear a wise this guy? he is a terrorist. we don't want him anywhere. >> in response to the criticism, rolling stone published a statement saying in part -- the elder daughter of vice president dick cheney has launched a campaign for a senate seat in wyoming. liz cheney is among several republicans challenging three term incumbent senator mike nz and the upcoming primary. cheney had previously
told him she wouldn't challenge his seat. those are some of the headlines. this is democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm juan gonzalez. on wednesday, lawmakers held the second major congressional hearing into the nsa's widespread surveillance programs since they were revealed by whistleblower edward snowden. during the hearing, representatives on both sides of the aisle expressed deep and stern about the bulk election of americans telephone records and other communications. in a stark contrast to the hearing last month, the bipartisan house panel forcefully questioned senior officials from the nsa, fbi, justice department, and the office of director of national intelligence. democratic representative john thatrs of michigan noted collecting telephone metadata is not covered under section 215 of
the patriot act. >> we never at any time during this debate have approved the type of unchecked the sweeping surveillance of united states citizens employed by our government in the name of fighting the war on terrorism. section 215 authorized the government to obtain certain business records only if it can show to the fisa court that the records are relevant to an ongoing national security investigation. what we think we have here is a situation in which if the government cannot provide a clear public explanation for how
it's program is consistent with the statute, then it must stop collecting this information immediately. and so this metadata problem, to me, has gotten quite far out of seriousnessiven the of the problems that surround it and created its need. >> during the hearing on wednesday, the nsa admitted its analysis of phone records and online behavior far exceeded what it had previously disclosed. the nsa deputy director revealed that analyst can perform what is called a second or third hop query in its pursuit of terrorists. technical term a indicating connections between people. so a three-hop query means the nsa can look at data not only from a suspected terrorist, but
from everyone that suspected terrorist communicated with, and then from everyone those people communicated with, and so on. jamesican congressmember sensenbrenner of wisconsin, author of the patriot act, called on the obama administration to rein in the scope of its surveillance on americans phone records, saying it would otherwise like enough votes in the house to renew the provision, which is set to expire in 2015. he said "you are going to lose it entirely." meanwhile, the man who sparked a national and global discussion on the nsa surveillance programs remains stranded in russia, unable to travel to latin america, where three countries have offered him refuge. fridaysnowden spoke on from moscow's airport. >> i also have the capability without any warrant of law to search for, seize, and read your communications. anyone's communications at any time.
that is the power to change people's fate. it is also a serious violation of the law. >> for more we're joined now by glenn greenwald, columnist on civil liberties and u.s. national security issues with the guardian and a former constitutional lawyer. ringwald first published edward snowden's revelations about the nsa surveillance programs and continues to write extensively on the topic. his most recent piece looks at, "the crux of the nsa story in one phrase: 'collect it all.'" glenn greenwald, welcome back to democracy now! >> good to be back. >> let's start with your reaction to this latest hearing. both democrats and republicans are beginning to seriously question government officials about the nsa scandal. >> it is very encouraging. it is remarkable that you look media isuch of the
focused on, the trivialities and personality surrounding this story, it is completely divergent from what has taken place in the halls of washington, in the fisa court, and in american public opinion. the most recent poll shows americans view what edward -- edward snowden is a whistleblower and not a traitor. the fact that you now see members of all political parties within the u.s., senate, house of representatives, increasingly angry over the fact they were misled and lied to by the obama administration, the laws enacted in the wake of nine/ -- 9/11 are being incredibly distorted by secret, legal interpretations approved by secret courts come i think really indicates exactly that spurred edward snowden were valid and compelling. if you want to think about whistleblowing in terms of people who expose things the
government is hiding that they shouldn't be doing in order to bring about reform, i think you're seeing the fruit of classic whistleblowing. him andatifying to other people as well. >> i want to go to a clip from republican representative from thes who tore into administration officials testifying before the house judiciary committee wednesday. here he is questioning deputy attorney general, one of four administration witnesses who were present. is having every phone call that i make to my wife, to my daughter relevant to any terror investigation? >> i don't know that every phone call you make your wife -- >> but you have got them. >> i don't know they would be relevant and we would probably not seek to query them because we wouldn't have the information we would need to make that query. >> but yet mr. snowden might be able to query them without your
knowledge. >> i do not believe that is proof. i don't think you would be able to do it. we don't believe he could do that without our knowledge, therefore, those would be caught. >> that a slightly reassuring. the fourth a memo specifically was designed to prohibit general warrants. how can collecting every piece of phone data be perceived as anything but a general warrant? >> because the phone data, according to the supreme court, is not something within which citizens have a reasonable expectation -- >> i have a reasonable expectation of privacy with me thing i share the e-mail i sent, my google searches, do i have a reasonable expectation in anything but maybe a letter i hand-deliver to my wife? >> those are dependent on the facts and circumstances of the inuments were talking about. the case of metadata, the supreme court ruled there was not covered by the fourth
amendment because of no reasonable expectation of privacy. >> that was republican representative lake ferran hold of texas questioning the attorney general james cole. >> obama officials and the nsa officials have been bald-faced lying to the public ever since we first revealed the identity of edward snowden and published the video online, which you rather famously said as an nsa analyst, i could access anyone's communication that i wanted, including even the president if i had your e-mail address or telephone number. mr.officials said that snowden was lying about that, but the officials are lying about that is that exchange does revealed. the nsa is collecting, storing, and monitoring billions of e- mails and telephone calls every single day. billions every single day. the content of those communications are stored in the
nsa system and in any analyst sitting at their terminal can query those communications, pull them up on their screen, and listen to the telephone calls or read the e-mails or the content of the chat. any nsa has the technological capability to do that, exactly as mr. snowden said, and there are hundreds of documents if not thousands in our possession that proved that conclusively, including training manuals that tell the analysts how to do it. air are legal constraints. they are not supposed to read the communications of americans without first getting individual warrants from the fisa court, but the technological and physical capability exists. all they have to do is click a few pulldown menus and they have what they want. the oversight is very poor, if it it exists at all. the extraordinary potential for a breach of this system not only has an embedded that virtually guarantees.
we know from the investigations that if we allow a spying agency to collect all of our those fromons, all americans and people around the world, and do so in the dark with no need to go to a court except in the rarest of cases to get in individual warrants, that that power will be abused. that more than anything is what prompted mr. snowden to tell americans and the world that there has been this spying agency creating a ubiquitous spying program, and apparatus unlike we have seen before, that sweeps up all forms of communication and is doing so unbeknownst to the citizenry which pays for it and in whose name it is being done, and it is a real threat to not just privacy but democracy. >> it was particularly significant that sensenbrenner, the author of the patriot act, is now telling the federal government, you have gone too far and we are likely to withdraw your authority to do this if you don't begin to
change what you have been doing. i also want to go to another republican whom you have written about, former two-to republican senator gordon humphrey of new hampshire who e-mailed edward snowden on monday and wrote in part -- you wrote about this exchange of e-mails between snowden and gordon humphrey. >> i think it is remarkable on several levels. i have been running for years about the fact civil liberties
abuses and excess government invasions are really the issue thideological p ancreate these trans- partisan coalitions more than probably any other. you have seen this over the past 10 years, the aclu has long partnered with right wing groups like the christian coalition to challenge the patriot act. i think this is lots of support for snowden and our nsa reporting like amnesty international and the aclu, human rights watch, lots of liberals and progressives who have been outspoken in their support of these disclosures, but you also see a lot of support for it on the right as well from people who take seriously their rhetoric about limited government and the rights of individuals and the need for safeguarding individual privacy. letter the humphreys reflects that. the only people this point are theefending the nsa hard-core neocons and republican parties, like lindsay graham and
nationalin who see security as the only value that matters, and the really hard- core obama loyalists and democrats who defend anything the obama administration does and have become the loudest proponents, ironically, of the massive secret surveillance and the government's power to listen in. republican neocons, democratic party loyalists, at this point are really the only defenders the nsa has left. i think you're seeing a real division in support of what mr. real breakdown in the division with the root support of mr. snowden, shining on what the government has been doing to our privacy completely in the dark. >> i want to ask you about the move by several major to look on valley companies together with civil liberties groups again to request formally in court that they be allowed to disclose the
numbers and the extent of requests from the government to get into their systems. could you talk about that? one of the big problems is that most of what the government is doing is being done without any transparency of any kind. one of the most significant things they have done, in the dark, they have agreements with silicon valley companies that allow them all sorts of access. sometimes the internet companies say we're only doing what we are compelled by law to do. there are others, including an article we published 10 days ago that indicates microsoft, they go far beyond what the law requires to cooperate aggressively with the nsa in secret. what these internet companies are saying in essence, we don't want her to be this wall of secrecy built around what it is we are told by the nsa to do. we want to be able to engage in the public debate in order to
tell our customers, look, this is what we are being forced to do, this is what we think those two far come in here is what it is we have been doing to try to resist some of these things. it is great to see these internet companies wanting to shine light on what it is it has been doing. unfortunately, the law and the obama administration are rigidly holding onto this requirement these things stay secret. i think you will see the fisa court increasingly looking toward transparency as a guiding value and allowing at least some of this process, some of this legal process, to see the light of day. that might be the most amazing thing about this, that we have the secret court with only the government present in this court is issuing rulings that define what our constitutional rights are. how can you have a democracy in which your rights are determined in total secrecy by secret court issuing 88 rulings about what
rights you have as a citizen? it is orwellian and absurd. i think one of the reforms will -- coming comforting from our reporting, is the light will shine on the shenanigans of that court. >> interestingly, the companies like google and facebook and twitter are saying they want to release this information, but not the telecom companies. some people are saying, google and facebook and twitter, this international implications, that other countries will not want to use their systems if they think -- if they are allowing easy access for the government to the information they collect. important point. we have known for a long time the telecoms, at&t, sprint, verizon, are completely in bed with the united states government. the scandal of the nsa in the that years was not they were just eavesdropping on americans, but the telecoms were
vigorously cooperating in that program and turning over full, unfettered access to the telephone calls and records of millions of their customers even though there was no legal basis for doing so. in fact, telecoms were on the verge of losing in court and being sued successfully by millions of their customers if they violated their civil rights and also that he had violated their privacy rights and broken the law, criminally and civilly. it is only because congress stepped in with the leadership of both parties and retroactively immunized the telecoms. but they are making massive profits on their cooperation with the nsa to allow all kinds of unfettered access of the communications of their customers free at the telecoms are the last people who want transparency brought to the cooperation because that would shock people to learn just how untrustworthy those companies are when it comes to protecting the privacy of their customers
communications. >> glenn greenwald, finally, i want to go into the flap that has arisen between you and carl bernstein. on monday, he publicly criticized you for the statements you allegedly made to an interview with an argentinian paper over the. reuters reported you said -- "snowden has enough information to cause more damage to the u.s. government in a minute alone than anyone else ever had in the history of the united states. the u.s. government should be on its knees every day begging happen to snowden, because if something does happen to him, all the information will be revealed and it could be its worst nightmare." >> that is an awful statement that reporter made, and the tone
which he made it. it is one thing to say mr. snowden possesses some information that could be harmful and that ought to be part of the calculation that everybody makes here, it is another to make that kind of an aggressive, non-reportorial statement that seems to me a reporter has no business making. time, there indeed are precautions, i and other journalists know about this, that snowden has taken in terms of secret in some information in perhapsplaces that would disclose, definitely would disclose more things, some of which might or might not be in interest of the united states. but that statement by that reporter is out of line. >> glenn greenwald, briefly, we just have a few seconds, your response to carl bernstein? rocks i think the way word word and crawled bernstein went to being adversarial student
defenders of the governments, -- >> i think the way they went to to defendersrial defender of the government, it leads to the point this is complete fantasy given what is to snowden has could be damaging if he released it, if that were his goal, and yet he is safeguarded that very responsibly to make sure only what the public should know is learned and nothing harmful has been released. it was a 36 hour media frenzy on him and me. carl bernstein and others were to look into what was actually said. >> when greenwald, thank you for being here. he first published edward snowden's revelations about the
surveillance program and continues to write extensively on the topic. his most recent articles are, "the crux of the nsa story in one phrase: 'collect it all.'" and he also wrote, "email exchange between edward snowden and former gop senator gordon humphrey." when we come back, we will go to south africa as the nation celebrates former president nelson mandela's 95th birth day. stay with us. ♪ [music break]
>> this is democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm juan gonzalez. today the world is celebrating the 95th birthday of nelson mandela, south africa's first black president and a beloved symbol of the country struggle to end apartheid. in prisonent 27 years under the apartheid regime for his release in 1990. four years later, he was elected president. this is the mother of former thaboafrican president mbeki. >> i wish you a happy birthday
and many more. >> after weeks of battling a serious lung infection, mandela remains in the hospital where he has been since june. south african president jacob zuma wished mandela happy birthday, and said in a statement that his health is steadily improving are you and he echoed an update from mandela's daughter, zindzi mandela-motlhajwa. >> i would like to assure each and everyone of you you, though i may not be a medical doctor, he is making remarkable ryegrass and we look -- progress and we look forward to having you back home soon. we would very much like to have him home. >> many around the world are marking mandela's birthday by dedicating 67 minutes of their time to helping others in honor of mandela's 67 years of public service. this is the south african archbishop desmond tutu. >> never before in history is
one human being so acknowledged in his lifetime the embodiment of reconciliation as nelson mandela. >> schoolchildren across south africa began their day by singing happy birthday to nelson mandela. the united nations has declared july 18 as mandela day. president obama and first lady michelle released a statement saying -- two years ago, democracy now travel to south africa to cover the climate change conference in durban. amy goodman and the democracy now! team stopped in johannesburg, where trevor ngwane took them on a tour of. he was active in the struggle
against apartheid that culminated in the election of nelson mandela as president in 1994. he remains a leading voice for basic human rights and against corporate globalization. amy interviewed trevor ngwane outside of mandela's former home in. to mandela walk house. before i used to come to that many mandela would come with her. happened to the old entrance. this restaurant used to belong to winnie mandela. they once pulled it down. i think you can have a look at
was note -- ok, this here. it was just a normal four-remote house. four room house. when did nelson mandela live here? >> 51, 52, 53. he was married to his previous i think this is where they had a divorce and then he mandela.e >> tell how he was captured. heree fact mandela lived is quite significant because remember, mandela is a country boy, actually. he came here to work in the mines. then he studied part-time until he got his law degree.
he imbibed the township spirit. he got into politics. .e met people he joined me anc here. i think he must have joined [indiscernible] at first he was very anti- communist. here.ere organizing if there was a time when the anc split. the congress did not like the anc working together with whites . they were full of africanism. the organizing meetings here in cape town, the freedom charter. there were collecting peoples to man's.
they were collecting peoples demands. they were taking people's grievances and presenting -- representing people for free, those who could not afford it. he kind of imbibed the problems of the people. i think it's a great man because he was quite in touch with those problems when he was staying here. unfortunately when he was here, he also divorced his wife. they were estranged because he was too busy. up and down with meetings. then he met winnie, this beautiful woman free at one thing led to another. unfortunately, before they can really enjoy their marriage, he was arrested. >> how was he captured?
he was arrested normally for the first offense, which was the 1961 trial. were all a huge trial of the anc leaders were rounded up. is is when people got killed in the sharpeville massacre in 1960 or 1961. the trial lasted for three or four years. sharpeville, this idea that the solution [indiscernible] mandela was one of the first. he left the country secretly and went to angola, ethiopia, i think even went to china if i'm not mistaken, trying to get arms and so forth. then he kicked back.
wasn'te frank, he [indiscernible] missions.ng some >> did the u.s. help in his capture? >> there is a story that the cia was involved because they knew where he was. this is the story we read here. once they captured him, they were able to also round up his , anddes by dennis colberg others. like i said, they were easy to capture because they did not really know underground work. there was aboveground ground campaigners who decided to go underground. all of this was to actually place bombs and electric pylons to show the government we mean business.
and they captured one, they captured all of them. because where they found one, they found the malm all. they all got caught. there was a big prison trial. people expected them to get the death sentence. some think intervention by into national people -- i cannot remember -- stopped that and it got life sentence and mandela and his comrades spent 27 years in jail here. themct, when mandela and were sent to the island, there was a long, long time from 1963, when they rose up. it lasted for 10 years. but other people argue the memory was there, the
underground work. i was a kid. workerser ordinary stood up. it took the bosses by surprise. it affected a lot of concessions. people got a pay increase. and then it caught everyone by surprise, including the anc, when they rose up. after that, the struggle kind of came together with the international -- you know, mandela, the anc, they placed themselves at the head of the people's movement, ok? research, do some some authors [indiscernible]
a site not far from here, we have peoples organizations, street committees, student organizations, women's organizations, all against apartheid. , mandela then rejected as a great hero -- which he is -- but now a great leader whom all must follow. the anc was presented as the only kind of movement which could lead us to freedom. elections,n the there were people who supported and voted for the anc, but i think that was because the working class knows the importance of unity. people do said, ok, if we all vote and support the anc and mandela -- when mandela came out, we were all impressed.
he was sharp. up and said we will nationalize the banks and the factories. >> that was veteran south african activist trevor ngwane speaking with democracy now!'s amy goodman speaking from soweto . when we come back, we look at a new film that follows three gifted singers at the university of cape town's opera school, which was closed to blacks during apartheid. stay with us. ♪ [music break]
>> this is democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm juan gonzalez. as people around the world mark nesson mandela's 95th birthday -- mark nelson mandela's 95th birthday, we look at a new film that follows three gifted singers at the university of cape town's opera school, which was once close to black students. sing."alled "i live to this is a clip featuring one of the students, thesale, where he
see how small it was. the sale was literally smaller than most peoples. to have someone come out of a place like that and has such peace in his heart, still, wow, that is amazing. >> i learned so much. .et i am a child of that era mandelaiate what nelson and the others went through. the world would probably be a different place if it wasn't for their hard work. ♪ >> have your parents ever seen you perform in an opera?
>> never. >> i would like to see him. totruly, truly i would like be in front of him and listened. >> that is a clip from "i live that follows three young singers from cape town's opera school. the film prepares tonight on pbs and new york city. you can watch it online as well starting tomorrow. for more we're joined by the film's director, julie cohen. welcome. first of all, tell me about the singer in the first clip and his parents and what you learned about the young people of south africa today making this film. >> absolutely. there were two singers in that clip, thesale and makudupanyane and thesale's parents who had
never had the opportunity to see him perform in an opera before and were quite surprised he chose this as a career path. as they noted, their dreams when he was born didn't really include in education at the finest universe in the country because at that time, but was not only impossible, but almost beyond imagination. the huge changes that have taken place in thesale's 26 year lifetime has been a thrill for them, but also led surprising directions because they had not been familiar with operable for their son became singing it, and i thought he was now not only going to be going to the finest opera school at the finest university in the country, but also visiting europe and the united states with his singing, really blew the whole family away. >> this whole idea in terms of the african majority in south africa to see opera as
a d: i are are of the white minority. >> and for many years opera was viewed completely in south africa and elsewhere, by the way, as completely european elitist, white art, both by whites who felt like's weren't going to have what it took to sing opera, but also more recently, the black government in south africa who is concerned is this what black students should be doing, is is the art form of the oppressor? these young people are extraordinarily talented and what they care about is the art and singing and doing what they love to do and what they can do so brilliantly. you to makedrew this film? >> i thought it was an extraordinarily compelling story. i became aware of it because the current director of the school is an american whom i had known
during childhood and knew are brilliant conductor, and now has gone to south africa to undertake this endeavor. but what really drew me in wasn't so much the politics or the racial issues are the apartheid and now the end of apartheid, but the extraordinary talent of the singers both black and white, and the school at was for most of its century in nowory whites only, is about two thirds black and mixed raced students. there are some pretty amazing art going on there, and i think you will see a new breed of opera students, opera stars all across the world who are coming from the black townships of south africa. recent graduates have already made names for themselves including a woman who made her debut at the met in january. but extraordinary for a 27-year- old of any background. clip.ant to plan other clam
said.re's a lot to be it is a story that needs to be shared. >> when were you born? >> 1991. very near the end of apartheid. although you still have a lot of in the storyings that make you think of certain situations that are underlying in south africa still. if you look at the fact apartheid basically hapned in america with the blacks and the white, apartheid basically happened in germany with the jews and germans, and anyone can understand what you're talking about, you know? >> that was another character in your film.
this whole issue of the younger generation, black and white in south africa, their view of race and political struggle in their own history? >> what surprised me as an outsider coming into the country was the extent to which only 19 years after the end of apartheid and mandela's election as president, the extent to which apartheid and the south africa's history is not too frugal he discussed by young people in their 20s. makudupanyane is quite politically to. the other two characters i spoke to and many of the other young people of both races in south africa don't want to talk too much about apartheid or about racial politics. was a mostt saidtating to hear thesale he is not interested in voting because he feels disillusioned
with the things that happen in this country over the past decades and this is a young man whose father was an on the organizingvist, strikes at the bank where he worked as a messenger and janitor for many years, troubling to get the right for himself and his family to vote. clipwant to end with a from your film were follows thesale as he arrives at the united nations to sing before the general assembly. >> celrationf nelson mandela's birthday takes place where mandela was granted the freedom of the city. felt it was an auspicious occasion. different elegant posture. [laughter]
[singing opera] >> i never thought i could ever be here before. ♪ it was an unbelievable moment for me. unbelievable. >> a clip from "i live to sing. " their ability to do this and for you to make this film is actually part of the legacy of what men don't has left behind. -- what mandela has left behind. >> absolutely.
as he realized one year ago today walking past mandela's picture on the or at the united nations as thesale got ready to sing opera on the floor of the general assembly, he said, when i think about the opportunities that i wouldn't have had a few years ago and the opportunities i do have now, i am incredibly moved by that experience. >> it is a wonderful film, julie cohen, director of "i live to sing" that premieres tonight on pbs 13. starting tomorrow, you can watch it online and we will have a link on democracynow.org. thank you for being with us, julie. for those in the new york area, tune in tonight at 7:00 p.m. where i will be debating deputy mayor holloway on the mounting problems of the cities to billion-dollar modernization i have been investigating for months -- to billion-dollar modernization i've been
investigating for months. amy goodman will be back tomorrow. democracy now! is looking for feedback from people who appreciate the closed captioning. e-mail your comments to firstname.lastname@example.org or mail them to democracy now! p.o. box 693 new york, new york 10013. [captioning made possible by democracy now!]