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tv   Democracy Now  LINKTV  May 18, 2018 3:00pm-4:01pm PDT

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05/18/18 05/18/18 [captioning made possible by democracy now!] amy: from the university of california santa cruz, this is democracy now! >> i was not aware there had been -- i think is important of all of the information. amy: the environmental protection agency is facing a major new scandal after it worked with the white house to bear in alarming federal study burty in alarming federal
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study detailing widespread chemical contamination in the nation's water supply. one trump administration official warned release of the study would create a public relations nightmare. the study found the chemicals in teflon and firefighting foam are a threat to human health at levels the epa have previously called safe. we will speak to attorney robert bilott. >> it is still in the blood of not just none in a percent of americans, but the entire globe host of everybody on the planet -- pull her bears, every animal species is being tested. it is coming from not only these plant emissions, it is also coming from consumer products use as well. amy: then we speak to pentagon papers whistleblower daniel ellsberg about the 50th anniversary of the catonsville nine, the role of civil disobedience, nuclear war and the danger behind president trump pulling out of the iran nuclear deal. >> it is that when the blood of
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not just not enough percent -- trumpreasingly, president is not bluffing. when he appears to be ready to do the crazy actions of either getting into a war with a nuclear weapons estate, north korea, or attacking iran, which would be another catastrophe. amy: all that and more, coming up. welcome to democracy now!,, the war and peace report. we're on the road in santa cruz, california. i'm amy goodman. the senate has confirmed gina haspel as director of the central intelligence agency. haspel is a 33-year cia veteran who was responsible for running a secret cia black site in thailand in 2002, where at least one prisoner was waterboarded and tortured in other ways during her tenure. haspel also oversaw the destructn of videotapes showing torture at the black site.
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haspel's confirmation came after six democrats joined most senate republicans to approve her. ayes are 54. the nomination is confirmed. amy: the democrats voting yes were senators joe donnelly, heidi heitkamp, joe manchin, bill nelson, jeanne shaheen, and mark warner. republican senators jeff flake and rand paul voted no, while john mccain was unable to cast a vote as he battles stage iv brain cancer from his home in arizona. senator mccain is a former prisoner of war who was tortured in vietnam. he said of haspel's role in cia torture is disturbing and disqualifying. oregon senator ron wyden, a member of the senate intelligenceommittee who's privy to classified briefings, said of haspel -- "there is much more that the full senate and the public should know about haspel's background, and i am convinced that, if they did, her
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nomination would be rejected." president trump said thursday north korean leader kim jong-un could suffer the same fate as moammar gaddafi if he refuses to give up his nuclear weapons. trump's comment came after national security adviser john bolton said on sunday the u.s. should use the so-called libyan model for denuclearization. pres. trump: if you look at that model with gaddafi, that was a total decimation. we went in there to beat him. that model would take place if we don't make a deal, most likely. if we make a deal, i think kim jong-un is going to be very, very happy. amy: in 2003, libya negotiated sanctions relief from the united states in exchange for renouncing its nuclear program and welcoming international inspectors to verify the dismantlement. eight years later, gaddafi was dragged through the streets and publicly killed by rebels after the u.s. and its allies intervened with a massive bombing campaign.
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in response to john bolton's threat and to ongoing u.s.-south korean war games, north korea has threatened to pull out of a planned june 12 summit between president trump and north korea's kim jong-un. the trump administration will announce a new rule today that would end federal funding to women's health organizations that provide abortions or refer patients to other clinics for abortions. the rule is aimed at planned parenthood, a long-time target of anti-choice activists. this is former planned parenthood president cecile richards speaking earlier this month on democracy now! >> domestic gag order that would really parallel what is happening overseas, then women would no longer able to get information about the legality of abortion, get referral come if amention the word health care provider is participating post planned parenthood provides more than 40% to the national family program. we would be banned and women who
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come to us for health care would be banned. it is unbelievably extreme. amy: house lawmakers at set to vote today on a massive farm bill that contains major cuts to snap, that is the supplemental nutrition assistance program, formerly known as food stamps. according to the center on budget policy priorities, the bill would cut food assistance to more than 2 million people, while largely offsetting the savings by expanding state and federal bureaucracies. today's vote comes as a new united way study finds 40% of u.s. whol household cannot afford the basics of a middle-class lifestyle -- rent, transportation, child care, and a cellphone. the study finds that more than 50 million u.s. households are now living in poverty or unable to meet the costs of ordinary expenses. republican leaders and the senate intelligence committee have broken ranks with president their house counterparts saying they see no reason to dispute the conclusion that russia interfered on behalf of donald trump and the 2016 u.s. election.
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the finding contradicts an earlier report by the republican-controlled house intelligence committee which says it found no evidence of collusion between trump's campaign and the russians. the news comes after president trump's lawyer rudy giuliani said members of special counsel robert mueller's team have concluded they cannot indict a sitting president. trump administration said thursday chinese trade negotiators have offered to spend as much as $200 billion in year to purchase additional u.s. goods in a bid to prevent president trump from imposing sanctions on chinese products. but china's foreign ministry denies the claim, saying ongoing talks at avoiding a trade war with the u.s. are still ongoing. trump said thursday he doubts the trade negotiations with china will succeed. egypt's authoritarian president abdel fattah al-sisi has ordered the rafah border crossing with the gaza sip opened til the end of the muslim holy month of ramadan on june 14. it would be the longest such opening in years, and comes
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after israel shot and killed 111 palestinians and injured thousands more at "great march of return" nonviolent protests that began on march 30. in the democratic republic of congo, health officials are warning an outbreak of ebola could potentially explode after the first confirmed case of the deadly virus was found in ban-dhaka, a city of more than a million people. this is peter salama of the world health organization. >> ebola -- urban evil is a different phenomenon from rural ebola. urban ebola can result in an exponential amount of cases and the way that rural ebola struggles to do. so far at least 45 people have been infected by the virus, with the death toll now at 25. an ebola outbreak in west africa in 2014 claimed more than 11,000 lives. colombia's government h
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ordered tens of ousands of people to evacuatereas along the cauca river as heavy rains threatened to breach a hydroelectric dam under construction. at least 600 people have been left homeless after workers cleared a blockage at the megadam in northwestern colombia, causing a surge in river levels downstream that flooded homes and destroyed schools, bridges, and a health center. back in the united states, nasa's newly confirmed administrator jim bridenstine affirmed the science of climate change thursday in a break from the republican party and from his own previous statements denying global warming. speaking to nasa employees at a town hall meeting at the agency's headquarters in washington, d.c., the former oklahoma republican congressmember said his position on climate change has evolved. in 2013, bridenstine demanded president obama apologize for research andte falsely said from the house floor that global temperatures stopped rising early this century. >> i don't deny the consensus
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that the climate is changing for the in fact, fully believe and know the climate is changing. i also know that we human beings are contributing to it in a major way. amy: bridenstine's comments came a day after alabama republican congressmember mo brooks suggested during a house science committee hearing that coastal erosion, and not greenhouse s, is to blame for rising sea levels congressmember brooks made the comments as he questioned philip duffy, president of the woods hole research center. california where you have the waves crashing against the shore lines and time and time again you have the clips crash into the sea? andof that discusses water causes it to rise, does it not? >> i'm pretty sure those are miniscule effects. amy: president trump has dismissed climate change as a chinese hoax and has ordered the u.s. to withdraw from the paris climate accord.
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a new york court ruled a defamation lawsuit by former contestant on fellow trump's reality tv show "the apprentice" can proceed. summer zervos has accused trump of repeatedly sexually assaulting her during a meeting in 2007, saying he kissed her on the lips, pressed his body against hers, and groped her breasts, all without her consent. she's one of at least 16 women who've publicly accused trump of sexual misconduct. after trump called zervos and other women accusers "liars" during the 2016 campaign, zervos sued trump for defamation, demanding an apology and compensation. trump's lawyers have argued the president is immune from all civil lawsuits filed in state court until he leaves office. fox news has named long-time executive suzanne scott as ceo . scott is the first ceo since roger ailes was forced to resign in 2016 amid multiple
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accusations of sexual harassment. scott has been cited in lawsuits by at least two former women employees at fox who say she covered up their complaints of harassment. she also reportedly worked to maintain roger ailes' demand that women at the network wear skimpy outfits, with former fox one news contributor saying, -- "you've got to wear your skirts short and your heels high." in hawaii, officials are struggling to distribute thousands of gas masks to residents of the state's big island after the kilauea volcano corrupted violently thursday, spewing spewing ash high into the atmosphere and throwing huge rocks hundreds of meters from the volcano's crater. although thursday's explosion was dramatic and led to a surge in toxic sulfur dioxide gas and choking ash, geologists are warning that even more powerful eruptions might soon take place. a new york city lawyer caught on camera making racist remarks to spanish-speaking patrons at a manhattan restaurant this week has lost his office space and is
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now at risk of being disbarred. new york congressmember adriano espaillat said thursday he's filed a grievance against aaron schlossberg, a lawyer in midtown manhattan who threatened to call immigration enforcement after overhearing customers and staff speaking spanish. the racist tirade went viral this week. >> my xt call to ice amy:chlossbe hid fro porters tside himanhatta homehursday,earing alack ski p and coring hisace with aopen umblla. when queioned by a lol nbc filiate,e turnednd spnted dowa mhattan seet ay from meras. and ose are me of th headnes. th is demoacy now! demoacynow.o, the waand ace repo. i'm amy odman. vironmenl protecon agenc ministrar scott uitt fac lawmakeron capit hill fo a thir te in lesthan a montas senats grillehim abt a slewf scanda over his spenng habit ties to industry lobbyists, and his deregulation of environmental
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protections. pruitt is currently facing about a dozen investigations, including into his $3 million security detail, his expensive first class travel, his below-market-value condo -- which he rented from the wife of an energy lobbyist -- and his other spending and ethics violations. wednesday's hearing came only two days after politico reported the environmental protection agency and the white house has suppressed publication of a federal health study on a national water-contamination crisis. the u.s. department of health and human services study found the chemicals pfoa and pfos, which are used in teflon and firefighting foam, endanger human health at a far lower level than epa has previously called safe. in other words, these chemicals are more dangerous than previously thought. but inteal emails, released by a freedom of information act request, show a trump administration aide warning the epa's top financial officer -- "the public, media, and
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congressional reaction to these numbers is going to be hugethe impact to epa and dod is going to be extremely painful. we, dod and epa, cannot seem to get atsdr -- that's the agency for toxic substances and disease registry -- to realize the potential public relations nightmare this is going to be." the study remains unpublished. the pentagon has used foams containing these chemicals in exercises at military bases nationwide. in a march report to congress, the pentagon listed 126 military installations where the nearby water shows potentially harmful levels of these chemicals, which have been linked to cancers and developmental delays for fetuses and babies. during wednesday's hearing, republican senator shelley moore capito of west virginia asked pruitt if he ultimately planned to publish the report. >> i was not aware that there had been some holding back of
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the report. i think it is important have all of the information. what is most important to me is not just studies -- as you know, i think the health advisory is 70 parts per trillion, which is a very strong standard that we ed to make sure if there is a maximum containment limit or a 107 approach, that it is based on a record. that is what we would procee post the summit next week. but we need more information, not less. amy: the epa and white house's effort to suppress this study is only the latest twist in a decades-long fight over the teflon's highly toxic chemical pfoa, also known as c8. for decades, the chemical giant dupont hid information about the toxicity of this chemical, even as the company discharged it into the waterways around its manufacturing plant in parkersburg, west virginia. pfoa, or c8, has now been link to six diseases, including testicular and kidney cancers. the chemical has been used so widely, it's now in the
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bloodstream of 99% of americans, even newborn babies. and the chemical is bio-resistant, meaning it does not break down. well, for more, we're jned by rob bilott, the leading environmental lawyer who represented 70,000 americans in lawsuits against the chemical giant dupont. he successfully won compensation for his clients, whose drinking water had been contaminad by toxic chemicals used to make teflon. rob bilott is a recipient of the 2017 right livelihood award. he was also the subject of a 2016 "new york times magazine" article headlined, "the lawyer who became dupont's worst nightmare." rob bilott is here at the university of california santa cruz for a gathering of the north american right livelihood laureates. welcome to democracy now! >> thank you for having me. amy: talk about this latest political report. disturbing.y for many years, i have been trying to make sure the public,
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the millions of people across this country and now globally that have these chemicals in their blood, in her jerking water, that these people have access to the most accurate information about the health exposed to these chemicals. we're talking about man-made, synthetic chemicals that do not exist in nature that are now in the blood of millions of people across the country. amy: of almost everyone. >> in wildlife and living things all over the planet. her many years have been try to encourage the federal government, the atsdr, to release as much information about the health risks of these chemicals as possible. what we haveow learned is one of the federal agencies that has primary responsibility for looking at human health effects from chemical exposure, atsdr, has developed -- don amy: that stands for? cook the agency for toxic
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substances and disease registry. it is part of the federal government created back in the 1980's whose specific purpose is to look at the digital human health effects from exposure to hazardous material. what we understand is the agency has come up with a draft report that apparently has taken a new look at the health risks from not only the teflon-related chemical pfos, the firefighting foam pfos, but several additional chemicals as well are also now getting into people's blood and intriguing water across the country. they're looking at that information and are suggesting that the levels of exposure that might cause harm are actually a lot lower than what u.s. epa has now been telling the people across the country. amy: i want to turn to a comment from former california governor arnold schwarzenegger, who tweeted wednesday -- "i'm a simple guy so i have a simple remedy when people like pruitt ignore or hide pollution: if you don't have a problem with americans drinking contaminated
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drinking water, drink it yourself until you tap out or resign." >> well, you know, what we're dealing with here is a nationwide, if not global, public health threat. whether it is a public relations nightmare. we have people dealing with the public health nightmare. it is critically important to get the most accurate, complete health information out there as quickly -- amy: a trump administration white house official said this report come if he gets out, will be a public relations nightmare. -- it looks at the areas around military bases, industrial areas, and what do you suspect it finds? >> i believe the agency has looked at various studies that try to assess at what levels in humans and animals can these chemicals cause harm? thelike many states across
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country, including new jersey, for example, which is suggesting the levels that are allowable in drinking water ought to be a lot lower than what u.s. epa is saying. u.s. epa is saying 70 parts per trillion is acceptable in drinking water. folks that are looking at a lot of the more current data, for example, the state of new jersey, are suggesting the levels as low as 14 or even lower. i believe people are thinking that this particular report that atsdr has prepared is also going to suggest that those number's ought to be a lot lower than they are. amy: what is firefighting foam? historically, it has contained a combination of these , nowcals, pfoa, pfos possibly some of these newer replacement chemicals that were priestly thought to hopefully be safe, but may present some of the same troubling characteristics as the older materials.
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what is happening now is the chemicals used in those foams are being found in drinking water around military bases, country andoss the worldwide. new zealand. these chemicals have been released through the foam released into the environment and are now contaminating water all over the planet. amy: in march, washiton state govern jay inslee signed the nation's first law banning firefighting foam and food packaging that conins pfos, .ncluding pfoa and pfos that is washington state. now it is going to the states that are taking the lead as opposed to the epa. >> as we sit here today in the air 2018, there is still not a federally enforceable standard for any of these chemicals in drinking water. there is an informal guideline from u.s. epa and because the chemical and related chemicals are showing up in drinking water
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all over the country come all over the world, there are states that are taking matters into their own hands and moving forward a lot quicker and saying, we are going to set anders like new jersey. amy: i want to turn to lori cervera, a resident of warminster, pennsylvania, ich is home to the former naval air warfare center and only a few miles from the willow grove military base. she is speaking in a video produc by the tercept. >> lking intwhat wou cause dney canr becau itdid not run in m famy. i n't ve any htory of . don't have a historyf ltiple serosis imy famil so iooked in it and und an hemical oathe and pfos that was in fire retardant foam th is usedt aibases. we were less an a halmile away from the air base. amy: in this is anher resent
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, jone stant. >> aer i hady third n, we found outhat my oest chil ix yearsld at the timejust getng readyo enr first ade, he s having migrais for thlast thr year therwere getng more tense. he wasaving voting in e moing. en hing probm with h balae. we tk him tohe dtors and the mri revled a brn tumor. the doors camen our room d th startedummelings with question wherdo you le? where diyou growp? did y ever wo with pesticid? doou live near highways? these are questions i never would have thought about. amy: rob bilott, just responding to what they are saying? >> these are chemicals presenting al qaeda potential health threats. in one of the issues that we're particular concerned about is
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realizing our nation's firefighters and emergency responders been using these firefighting foams or whose equipment and gear they where may have been coated with materials that included some of these chemicals in the past. and emergencyters responders have very high levels of these chemicals now in their blood. now we need to know, what is vegan to our firefighters amy: we're speaking to attorney rob a lot who is represented 70,000 citizens in lawsuits against dupont. they're concerned about the drinking water been contaminated by toxic chemicals used to make teflon and also firefighting foam will stop this is democracy now! back in a minute. ♪ [music break]
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amy: this is democracy now!,, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. from theadcasting university of california santa cruz. our guest is the right livelihood laureates rob bilott. we spoke to him in january at the sundance film festival because there was a film "the devil we know" that had just come out that features him and some of his clients, taking on the issue of teflon, a chemical -- to michael's and teflon have contaminated what none in a person of the united states. as we continue to look at the issue of what are contamination, next week there's going to be an epa summ but not everyone is invited. can you talk about that? >> i think highlighting the issue and how widespread it is
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across the entire country wh a list every state having a community that has water contamination now affected by these chemicals, the u.s. epa is having a pretty impressive -- resident it event. they're holding a national summit to address this entire class of chemicals. , butust pfoa and pfos other chemicals. representatives from all 50 states have an invited to this conference and it was originally some concern about whether citizens and impacted committees would be allowed to attend as well. there is now my understanding, a live feed that people can listen in and hopefully participate. amy: how can i participate if they're not allowed in the room? >> that is a good question. i asked if i could participate and so far i have not been allowed to attend the meeting. i have been told i can call in and listening on a live feed. amy: the chemical industry will be there? >> my understanding and looking
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at the agenda that has been posted is a representative of the american chemistry council there,will not only be but be participating. amy: what will be decided at the summit? >> don't know. don't know what will actually be the result of the summit other than bringing all of these state and federal agency representatives together to try to come up with a plan of how do we address this nationwide contamination problem? >> i want to turn to a video come in nbc news report on h new research shows cancer has become the number one killer of firefighters in the united states, including world adjust of respiratory as well as urinary cancers. >> in boston where it is illegal for firefighters to smoke, three new cancer cases are reported each month, twice the rate of city residents. >> this is an epidemic and firefighters.
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this is something that will consume us. >> richardsons -- richards or say anything cover firefighters in a toxic soot. >> i've kidney cancer. >> i have brain cancer. >> on the memorial wall at fire headquarters come the faces of cancer step 190 firefighters who died of job-related cancer just didn't 1990. far more than the number that have died actually fighting fires. amy: who is responsible for this, rob bilott? that was in nbc news report. >> that is what we would like to find out. right now we know the firefighting community has very high levels of these chemicals in their blood. blood testing that has been done over the years has indicated this is a particularly highly exposed community. they're not only exposed to these chemicals in the firefighting foam that they use and often are coated in, but there is concern that a lot of the equipment or gear they have worn over the years, that some of the stain proving or
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waterproofing materials may have been manufactured using some of these chemicals and trace amount of those chemicals may have ended up on the coatings as well and can any of those chemicals then get into the human body because of that. this is something that has never adequately been researched to date. we have been asking the federal agencies, including -- i sent a later to the atsdr in september asking and pleading for the agency to do a national study of firefighters that have been exposed to these chemicals to not only should we be studying people who were exposed to these chemicals in drinking water, but the firefighting community who has a special additional exposure. we need to be finding out are these high cancer rate that we just heard about related to the chemicals in the increment and the foams? that have been using amy: finally, overall, how can people protect themselves?
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which are the corporations that make this? , thist of these chemicals entire family of chemicals, which now includes about 3000 chemicals that are part of what --call the perfluoroalkyl the best-known, the chemicals that have eight carbons or c8, now a bunch of related chemicals that have been made that are c4, c6 they're hoping to these safer better showing up at the same toxicity confirms. a lot of them were invented by the 3m company. then you have a variety of companies that use those materials to make other products . amy: i want to thank you very much for being with us. we will continue to follow these stories and cases. rob a lot, our guest, represented --rob bilott, our guest, represented 70,000
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citizens in lawsuits agast dupont. he successfully won compensation for his clients whose drinking water had been contaminated by toxic chemicals used to make teflon. bilott is a leading environmental lawyer and recipient of the 2017 right livelihood award. he was the subject of a 2016 "new york times magazine" article headlined, "the lawyer who became dupont's worst ghtmare." when we come back, we will speak with one of the most famous whistleblowers in the world, yes, daniel ellsberg. stay with us. ♪ [music break]
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amy: this is democracy now!,, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. we are broadcasting from the university of california santa cruz. the basement of the mchenry library. we are here at university california for a gathering of the right livelihood laureates in north america. we spend the rest of the hour with one of those laureates, daniel ellsberg, perhaps the nation's most famous whistleblower. in 1971, he was a high level defense analyst when he leaked a top secret report on u.s. involvement in vietnam to "the new york times" and other publications that came to be known as the pentagon papers and played a key role in ending the vietnam war.
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daniel ellsberg was also a consultant to the department of defense and the white house, where he drafted plans for nuclear war. he writes about this in his new book "the doomsday machine: confessions of a nuclear war planner," daniel ellsberg reveals for the first time that he also made copies of top-secret documents from his nuclear studies -- an entire second set of papers in addition to the pentagon papers for which he is known. in 2006, he won the right livelihood award. often referred to as the alternative nobel. we spoke on thursday on the 50th anniversary of one of the most famous acts of civil disobedience in the u.s. on may 17, 1968, a group of catholic priests and lay people broke into a draft board office in catonsville, maryland, in 1968, stole 378 draft cards and burned them in the parking lot as a protest against the vietnam war. they burned them with homemade napalm. they became known as the catonsville nine. >> we regret very much the
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inconvenience. we sincerely hope we did not injure -- the kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. >> we have chosen to be powerless chemicals in a time of criminal power. we have chosen to be branded as peace criminals by war criminals. amy: participants included fathers daniel and philip berrigan. father dan berrigan made national headlines when he went underground for four months after his trial. when i spoke to daniel ellsberg on thursday, i began by asking him about the catonsville nine. >> i remember above all when dan berrigan was finally captured after a number of months leading the fbi, as my wife and i did for just 13 days, i don't think we would have thought of doing that instead of surrendering to
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the fbi when the order came out for us without things example that this was a way to continue in action, continue resistance to war, that you do not have to submit meekly. when he was finally arrested, the picture was remember is giving the peace sign in handcuffs, something i always remembered when later i was in handcuffs. that inspired me. but the smile on his face. i was just looking at the cover of a terrific book on him by our friend jim forest that plane the line stem with niel and there is a picture of him smiling. amy: he s captured on block toand and that picture is fbi agents on other side, he is the peace sign up and i think a journalist and the dam, what are your plans, dan berrigan? he said, resistance. >> the life of resistance. we were at danbury prison when his brother was on trial, phil, supposedly attempting to kidnap
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kissinger. he was introduced in me -- and from them as father denials work. no, he is sitting behind me. when there were burning the draft files, i member it was ,an's statement, we apologize good friends, for our fracture of good order and burning paper instead of babies. a macabre statement. and yet when lbj objected very much to the check hey, hey, lbj, how many kids did you learn today, it was actually a very fair question which never got answered essentially. we never counted the number of people we were killing are making refugees. that was something the pentagon did not need to know. so it is today. i think in iraq, americans never faced up to a number of people who ve died because of our invasion, our aggression against iraq. afghanistan over the last 30 years since we first inspired a
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against thed jihad soviets there. what we have done to the middle east has been hell. amy: you were not always a peace activist. you worked for the pentagon and the rand corporation. you are the -- one of the few who had the secret history of u.s. involvement in vietnam locked away in your safe. what changed you? what made you decide to open your safe and copy those thousands of pages and release them to the press? >> i read a study, 23 years of lies and breakg treaties, 1945 to second, i knew it was going on under a fifth president in a
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row, richard nixon. i knew from insiders -- i worked for nixon at the very beginning of his administrations a consultant on vietnam. i knew he did not intend to get out but was trying to win, essentially, by threatening ourear war and to prolong puppet in saigon in power through his second term. so the war over sure was going to go on and it was going to get larger. the immediate thing was that i met young americans who were on their way to prison who had decided the strongest statement they could make about the war was not by going to sweden working a country just objector or going to vietnam, but to go to prison. themo realized looking at that if they could do it, i could do it and i should do it. the question in my mind was the good there was how can i help shorten the war now that i'm ready to go to prison?
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amy: so you release the pentagon papers or you got them to "the newer times" and then to "the washington post." there's a new film out about their role called "the post." is it accura? >> it is a hollywood film, not a documentary. i enjoy seeing myself led by ed byfic actor playi actor that looks very much like me, but only better. amy: have they ever noticed you are the source? >> know, these to say for 20 years, daniel ellsberg who says he gave the pentagon papers to "the new york times." i called them several times and said, can you change that frame? they say, no, we don't reveal our sources. i say, i was on trial and i have acknowledged it. nor has "the washington post" revealed me as the source except
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in this movie, which is not by "the washington post." amy: why is it important to you were the source of the pentagon papers? >> at the time, it was simply people would ask me, what do they mean by that, the man who says he gave it to them? i did not apprecie that question. it was not important in itself. as a matter of fact, i think snowden did the right thing by being out of the country or he could communicate with reporters, just as dan berrigan did the right thing by leaving -- invading the fbi for months ending able to communicate with the public the way he could not have done in prison. snowden would have been a committed cotto if he was in solitary can from a for 10.5 months of her seven years in prison and snowden, could not be communicating with us about the dangers of surveillance as he has been doing for years now if you were in this country. he is aiming in effect and permanent exile.
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and you go you're vilified by the right for years but when ed snowden went into exile in moscow because he could not leave russia, the u.s. had pulled his passport, the very right that vilified you said, well, and snowden, some id he should be kill, some saihe beulde executed, he sai should jailed, and said "he is no dan ellsberg." >> identify more with ed snowden then chelsea manning. -- ed snowden and chelsea manning. they went through what i did. they acted in ways that would permanently constrained their career. in my case, nixon did not achieve what he had in mind. 115 years in prison, or the another point, incapacitate me totally. but that was kind of a miraculous set of events that cost nixon his job and made the war endable.
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that was kind of a miracle. we need more miracles like that. we need more and snowdens and chelsea mannings. amy: explain how you did not end up in gel and remained the president. >> the revelation of the history inflows people to be against the war but they were art against the war. that did not affect nixon. he went on with the war. what next and responded to was his fear, whether roe -- rather well were rounded. he felt i could prove it with documents in a way that the public would lead to public opposition to his policy. yet to shut me up. to do that in thisountry had to take what was crimes then -- or less wiretapping, hiring ca people for the white house to burglarize a former office,
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hoping to get information he could blackmail me with into silence. later bringing some of those same cia assets who were later caught in the watergate to washington to incapacitate daniel ellsberg totally. and the what d mean? >> what do i mean? that is what i asked the prosecutor, what does that mean, kill me? he said the words were too incapacitate you totally. but you have to understand these guys were all cia assets from the bay of pigs. never use the word "kill." they say neutralize, termite with extreme prejudice wil. i think the moment was to shut me up. amy: how did your trial and? >> the trial ended with -- john dean, expose the burglary of my
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doctors's office earlier, later people exposed the attempt to incapacitate me, and finally the warrantless wiretapping. when the judge could not find the files for the wiretapping, because they have been kept out of the fbi file, there were in the white house because they were criminal and they did not want to edgar hoover to blackmail nixon with the evidence of this white house ordered crime. without those files, the judge said this offense seasons of justice, a pattern of governmental misconduct. what was more important, the same charges came to confront nixon. the war would not have ended with nixon in office by the way, in 1973 when my final stage of my trial started, the possibility of nixon not finishing his second term -- which you just won in a landslide -- was zero, it was impossible. it was like the berlin wall coming down in 1989 or nelson presidentcoming
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without a violent revolution. these were impossible events which did occur. i am saying the ending of the war as early as 1975 depended on nixon thing out of office, which he was in 1974. that was simply an for seeable. it relied on a lot of people doing unusual things. alexander butterfield revealing thwhite hoe taping which revealed john dean had been telling the truth when he accused the president of a cover-up. then later, the attorney general resigning, elliot richardson, rather than fire a special prosecutor. we are back at that issue today. then the second person, say man who had revealed the fbi wiretapping of me, was now the acti attorney general. and he resigned rather than fire the special prosecutor that was the so-called saturday night massthat got the public arousedd
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called for another special prosecutor to be named, independent of the white house. we may live through that again very shortly. amy: that is what i want to ask you about. if you see parallels between richard nixon and donald trump? >> trump is almostlatantly talking about nixon's madman asory, the idea that trump, nixon pretended to be, was unbalanced, capable of know,erate actions, you capable of going to war using nuclear weapons. the problem is, it is all too easy to believe that trump is mad in this case. kim jong moon gives -- kim jong-un gives a similar action. i'm not sure he is bluffing. i'm increasingly feeling that president trump is not bluffing
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when he appears to be ready to do the crazy actions of either getting into a war of and of course that -- nuclear weapons state or attacking iran, which would be another catastrophe. not nuclear and to we use them againstiran's underground sites as vice president cheney wanted to do in 2006 and was exposed there i think by a week by my showing theur hersh joint chiefs were against that. i think that was a major factor in that not happening. we're on the verge now of i think a two-sided nuclear war, a limited one with north korea. they don't have the capability, don't have enough weapons to cause nuclear winter. and they don't have enough cities to burn for us to cause nuclear winter, but it will be more violence in a day, in a week come in a month than the world has ever seen in that period of time. amy: du think a summit is possible? >> of course what we have been
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hearing is a summit is possible. that, by the way, was not foreseen two months ago. at the same time we talked that is being put into question. it always looked improbable or implausible rather than impossible. now it does look unlikely. if it fails -- there is, by the way, an agreement that could come out of that summit would be for the good of all. a double freeze, as the chinese and russians put it, on their testing of h-bombs and h were heads -- warheads, missiles. icbms. and on our part, ceasing to reverse assassination of kim jong-un the so-called decapitation. were rehearsing invasions of north vietnam, which we do at least annually, and signing a peace treaty after, what is it, more than 60 years. withormalizing relations
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north korea. i think that is possible, more than possible, but it doesn't seem where we are headed. trump is to be pushing at a totally infeasible notion of the very early stages of the giving up their deterrent entirely, all of their nuclear weapons deconstructed. i think kim jong-un think that would be crazy for him, and that is that the kind of crazy he is. the kind of crazy that trump is, i'm afraid, is that he could start that war. amy: what is your assessment of the national security visor john bolton who said in sunday talk show, as the summit was, well, about to get underway in a few weeks, that he was looking at the libya option? , black is such a macabre humor kind of joke. of the nuclear,
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the expensive and difficult nuclear program in north korea is precisely that example that endon -- he doesn't want to with the bayonet in his back any more than could off the wanted that -- could off the wanted. bolton, has made no secret for years if you got north korea ould be attacked. that has extended into the period when north korea is a nuclear state. we hav't made threats against the nuclear state since the cuban missile crisis, which i participated in in 1962. amy: how were you involved? >> i was working on two goods under the national security council, so-called excom. i was sleeping in the pentagon several nights for the end of that crisis. i describe it in some detail in my book. what i didn't realize at the
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time was how very close we came to ending human civilization, most human life. what we already had was a doomsday machine, a system for destroying every city in russia and china with the effect of causing smoke in the stratosphere, lofted intthe ratosphere that would block sunlight and kill all the harvests. in effect, it wou have led to worldwide starvation, including in this country. not just ordinary famine, but the end of food. that has been really the consequence we can expect since 1983 when it was discovered that smoke was the most widespread lethal effect of such a large nuclear attack. amy: known as nuclear winter. >> in effect, a way to bring about death by famine of
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virtually all humans. amy: two things are happening at once. the possibility of u.s.-north korea summit or the torpedoing of it, and the u.s. president trump fulling the u.s. out of the iran nuclear deal. >> the pulling out of the iran deal seems to have no imaginable benefit to anybody except those madmen who want to see a ran destroyed in a military attack -- iran destroyed in a military attack. that seems to be netanyahu and the sunni rivals of iran, saudi arabia, and others who want to withhe u.s. destroyed israeli help that could well lead to the use of u.s. nuclear weapons against underground command bunkers andsites in iran. the key effect of, as other war in korea, is not directly
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nuclear winter as it would be an .ar against russia action, this would be in either case a war in which russia and china would be on the other side. i think the main effect in the long run would be it would kill, for generations perhaps, the chance of the kind of cooperation with russia and china that is esseial both to do with climate change and with eliminating the doomsday machines on both sides will stop it would make them permanent, in effect. and although they have not been triggered by their hair trigger posture over the last seven years -- yet -- i think that is by a kind of miracle, a kind of miracle that i've been talking about earlier that can be good or not so good. i think we have been saved by very good luck, and that is not so likely to continue without a major change in our polies. is itt i'm really saying thisgent to dismantle
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doomsday machine and to deal with thelimate problem in the way that it was urgent to raise the levees and strengthen the levees in new orleans before andina, as was recommended requested and demanded every year for more than a decade before katrina struck. likewise, was urgent to stop building in flood zones in houston before harvey struck. it in this case, we're talking about the world, the world of humanity being obliterated. amy: what message do you have for government insiders who are considering becoming whistleblowers? don'tmessage to them is, do what i did. don't wait until the bombs are actually falling or thousands more have died before you do what i wish i had done earlier' in 1964 or even 1961,nd that
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is revealed the truth that you know, the dangerous truths that are being withheld by the government at whatever cost to her self, whatever risk that may take. consider doing that because a war's or their lives may be at stake. the twoe case of existential crisis i'm talking about, the future of humanity is at stake. so many graduated classes i think have been told year after year for half a century that they fe a crossroads or much depends on what they do. that is no exaggeration right now. it is this generation come in at the next one, that the people living right now that have to change these problems fast. and i think truth telling is crucial to mobilize that. amy: what is the information that you think most needs to be revealed right now? >> well, i'm certain there are ciaies in the pentagon and
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that reveal two things. that would be disastrous, catastrophic to go to war against north korea, even though the immediate casualties would be measured in millions rather than billions, which i -- likewise, it would be catastrophic to be at war with iran. size of four times the iraq. we have never faced up to the human cost of that war, iraq. so i'm sure there are top-secret, or higher than top-secret that make this very clear. i was a mattis, john mattis, the secretary of defense, should not wait until the bombs are falling before he reveals those truths to congress and the public. and if he doesn't do it, and very unlikely to do it, than his secretary were aides or assistant secretaries should risk sacrifice their careers to
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avert these wars, which must not happen. amy: that is pentagon papers whistleblower daniel ellsberg. his latest book is "the doomsday machine: confessions of a nuclear war planner." henry kissinger once called him the most dangerous man in america. that does it for our show. if you would like to sign up for our daily digest for news headlines and news alerts each day, you can text the word 866.cracynow to 6696 a special thank you to our crews here at university santa cruz. democracy now! is looking for feedback from people who appreciate the closed captioning. e-mail your comments to or mail them to democracy now! p.o. box 693 new york, new york 10013. [captioning made possible by democracy now!] happy birthday happy birthday simin farkhondeh!
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