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tv   [untitled]    September 11, 2012 4:00pm-4:30pm EDT

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eleven years ago today the u.s. and the world watched in horror as the september eleventh terrorist attacks on foldit so in the time that's passed what's changed in america from our loss of freedoms to sacrifice lives our teeth questions more. and since nine eleven the u.s. has turned to drone warfare around the globe for the first time president obama is actually talking about his drone policy coming up we'll tell you about the sacrifice the specific criteria he claims the u.s. uses to conduct drone strikes. are going to want you to pictures of the subway system so tight it was looked at by your pictures. and in a post nine eleven world security is
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a top priority even the simple act of taking pictures can now land you in trouble how we become a nation that sacrificed our freedoms for our sense of security. it's tuesday september eleventh four pm in washington d.c. i'm meghan lopez and you're watching r.t. . for three hundred sixty four days a year americans go about their daily lives they pay their bills work the normal nine to five and worry about having enough money for retirement but one day a year this day we stop to remember the extraordinary circumstances that brought us to where we are eleven years ago today on a day very much like this one three thousand men women and children lost their lives in the years that followed thousands more died in wars and even more were scarred both on and off the battlefield since that fateful day americans have
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watched as u.s. military plunged into wars the economy tumbled and their rights to privacy were stripped away for each of us nine eleven represented something very different very personal but today we want to take a look at the bigger picture we want to know if the actions taken since then were too much or just enough as we look at the told this past eleven years has taken on the u.s. to help me do that r.t. correspondent on a stasia churkin a is in our studio in new york with more hi there on a stasia so we've made it many sacrifices in the years following nine eleven from ramped up t.s.a. to the patriot act was this ramp up enough and was it justified. megan of course we have to be fair here and say that certain measures were of course necessary but there have been many measures put in place throughout the last eleven years that many people will of course agree that have been a little more than excessive i mean when we're seeing mothers at airports that have
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to throw out their baby bottles because of worries that there might be explosives in their mothers having to their own breast milk at airports because there are worries that this might be dangerous for the other people taking the airplane people removing their prosthetic limbs at airports to prove that. to go through security these are of course measures that i'm sure many people would say are of course a tad to say the least excessive and this is something that americans have been dealing with on a day to day basis ever since nine eleven and a sufi i just want to put some numbers on the toll that nine eleven has taken on all of us i want you to take a look at this along with our viewers as far as the human toll goes nearly three thousand people were killed in the september eleventh attacks around four thousand four hundred seventy seven were killed in iraq over two thousand words left dead in afghanistan and then back here in the u.s. one hundred sixty seven suicides were marked in two thousand and eleven while
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there's one hundred sixteen suicides in the first part of twenty twelve so it goes beyond the initial nine eleven numbers now as far as the financial toll goes before nine eleven we had one hundred twenty eight billion dollars surplus today we have a sixteen trillion dollars debt the new york city recovered struction efforts and policy decisions alone cost three point three trillion dollars and we've seen a two hundred thirty four percent increase in oil prices since two thousand and one and as you just kind of spoke about a little bit there the t.s.a. is also has an annual budget of eight billion dollars so i mean obviously these numbers are not nearly extensive enough but they do begin to paint a picture of where we are now forces then can you talk a little bit about how far we've come as a. nation since two thousand and one absolutely megan here you know you paint a wonderful picture of really it seems like nine eleven became the de one for the rest of the future of the united states because what we're seeing these deaths that
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of course might have been avoided these excessive spending is that of course might have been also cut down tremendously especially in in a very complicated economic situation really a lot of experts and common americans believe that it's been a way downhill and september eleventh became this sort of terrible tragic day that led to consequences that a lot of which were quite chaotic and could have been avoided and could have been handled differently and of course this is something that's a very huge reality today and as the united states of course goes through this turbulent time of economic attempts of economic recovery it cannot be ignored that these enormous amounts of money billions of dollars that were spent on security billions of dollars that were spent in wars of broads abroad could have probably been put to better use here at home and we don't know how much if people would actually feel safer today and on a stasia there's been a lot of reports coming out in the news today expect last night of the new york
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times was one of them they published an op ed last night called the deafness before the storm and in it contributor kurt eichenwald talked about the numerous warnings the bush administration had received that pointed to a possible terrorist attack and not just talk they didn't only talk about the one on our august the sixth of that year but but many others and i want to read you part of the new york times article it said while those documents are still not public i have received excerpts from many of them along with the others recently just declassified records and come to the inescapable conclusion the administration's reaction to what mr bush was told in the weeks before that infamous briefing reflected significantly more negligence that has been disclosed in other. the words the office six document for all the controversy of controversy it provoked is not nearly as shocking as the briefs that came before it so honest i.c.i. his article he cited several examples of blatant oversight many came down very hard
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on george bush for ignoring these signs but it can be argued as it was in my newsroom this morning that it wasn't simply the bush administration's fault but numerous agencies fault is the bush administration most at fault here or there are other people to blame well you know we're going to it's of course you know it's been eleven years so whether or not it's a blaming game is really in place now is a question but it's you know i think here the bottom line is this whether george bush his administration any of the agencies some of the agencies involved had even a hint of even one percent of what we saw on september eleventh certainly more should have been done and more could have been done so if that was in fact the case that there could have these signs could have been taken more seriously than of course everybody who had any knowledge of what was to come is to blame on a stasia there's been a lot of reports coming out also about the money that the first responders are now
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receiving are supposed to be receiving within the next year we're going to have to talk about that segment later or refer us to our online database for that for that discussion archie correspondent to stasia churkin to new york thank you so much for joining us now in the years since nine eleven president obama since president obama took office he's changed the way americans fight wars namely with his use of drones to target and kill enemies up until this point he has been silent about this tactic and his involvement in the decision making process of who gets to who is targeted in specific but last week he opened up about it on c.n.n. . obviously as president ultimately i'm a sponsible for decisions that are made by the administration. but i think what the american people need to know is the seriousness with which we take both the responsibility to keep them safe but also the seriousness with which we take the
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need for us to abide by our traditions of rule of law and due process president obama said that there is specific criteria the u.s. uses to conduct drone strikes it says that the suspected terrorists must be a target that is authorized by us laws must be a threat that is serious and not speculative must be a sit in a situation where we cannot capture that individual before they enact a plot against the u.s. must be careful to avoid civilian casualties and finally the u.s. citizens that are suspected of terrorism must have the protections of the constitution and due process but with the recent ramp up of drone strikes in yemen and the rising number of civilian casualties is the obama administration sticking to this criteria as stringently as the president says they are douglas macgregor is returning retired u.s. army colonel and also the executive vice president of the burke mcgregor group l l three and joins me now to discuss this very issue so thank you so much for joining
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us let's start off with the latest information coming out of yemen yesterday a number two al qaeda member saeed also here he was killed in an airstrike now i should say that the u.s. hasn't confirmed its involvement in those air strikes but can you talk about the ramp up of the drone program in yemen where we've launched i think somewhere in the neighborhood of twenty strikes this year and human which is a significant increase over the past i think what's important to understand is that there are legal authorities to justify the use of force against targets overseas who are considered to be enemies of the united states. now general michael hayden when he was the cia director said that liberal democracies do not normally wage war on the basis of memoranda locked away in a safe in the department of justice and he urged more openness but the truth is it's not open we really don't know the quality or the value of the intelligence that were provided and how these targets are selected and that's part of the
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problem and that is what president obama spoke about a little bit in that c.n.n. interview is that they that he wouldn't confirm his involvement or picking up the targets but to some capacity he is involved now so you also carry was the taint in what tom obey for a number of years he also went through a saudi rehabilitation institution that's supposed to i want to get this right focus on replacing militant ideology with religious moderation and obviously those methods that and work very well if if we are going to him down a few years later well first of all in fairness to the saudis stay have had considerable success with a lot of the former al qaida types but the truth is that right now this gentleman and most of his peers that are involved on the sunni islamist radical side of the equation are really focused on syria right now and most of their focus is really internal to the region you know distinguishing who really represents
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a threat from who doesn't is a difficult proposition because we tend to regard anyone who seems to be opposed to us as a potential adversary well there are lots of people that fall into that category killing them does it really make any difference what if we didn't kill them would it make any difference we needs are questions that we can't answer we just don't know enough about it but here's an important point for your viewers to understand the reason this continues it is actually increased is because in the eyes of the american people this is a legitimate. and legitimacy is a powerful force americans are convinced that there are large numbers of people out there trying to do us harm and that killing them wherever they show up whether it's pakistan yemen sudan anywhere is justified as long as that perception exists whether this is truly legal it in the national says makes no difference it will continue now i ask colonel anthony shaffer last week if these airstrikes are fighting or fostering terrorists and i'd like to get your opinion on that well
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those of us that have looked at this point out that we continue to kill large numbers of people and we're told that there are still more to be killed so if the idea is that somehow or another you're thinning the ranks it doesn't seem to work in fact you could make a good argument that we're cultivating the emergence of more enemies new cells that are not necessarily bred from some central location in northern pakistan they they pop up as independent franchises again in response to us into the into the perception that we're trying to impose a military political had germany on the region so in that sense i think in many cases these are in fact counterproductive and i also want to take a look at what qualifies as a military target so to start off we need to look at the number of drone strikes in yemen there back in two thousand and two there was only one and i think we have a graphic to show that there was only one and two thousand and eleven there was ten and then this year there have been thirty three now part of this reason could be
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that there were even present and in full it took advantage of the arab spring to start controlling the south part of yemen and this next chart that i want to show you if we can bring that up really fast this is the number of civilian casualties versus militant al qaeda kalil to use casualties of militants are in the red so significantly higher but i mean according to the new york times article those who qualify as a militant are quote all military aged males in a strike zone unless there is explicit. intelligence post humorously probing them and it sent so it's all mail for well it isn't a deal proven guilty and here's another piece of bad news there's a tendency to regard the collateral damage that occurs as the fault of those who are foolish enough to support or be associated with the targets their words if you're providing any sort of sustenance if you're meeting with these people you are by definition guilty and therefore you deserve to go down with the target in the strike again i think these are counterproductive i don't think that they're working
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their magic by any stretch of imagination and again the last thousand years of history suggests that if we are less visible in the region and we are less active in this regard that the people that live in the region will turn their attentions to their enemies in the region and not us now i laid out a little bit earlier than the five criteria that president obama says that he uses to use these drone strikes to the best of your knowledge is he following us criteria i'm sure he is and again this is a judgment call this is you know the president sits at his desk and he's added something by people he trusts who are telling him these people deserve the worst what is he supposed to do how many how much of his day to see devote to systematically examining uganda lying intelligence to determine whether or not this makes any sense i don't think he's got the time that there are a lot of people who are supposed to deliberate about this but again you're dealing with the same people now who were there in the last five to ten years of the previous administration they see the world through
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a lens so they see lots and lots of enemies who deserve to be destroyed whether or not that's justified whether or not that makes any sense particularly this point in time that's another matter entirely so i don't think the president is lying by any means when he says this is what i'm doing whether or not it's effective you know who else is externally reviewing this and advising it that's the question so just to be very clear for our viewers what you are saying is to. best of the president's knowledge he is following this criteria yes but not necessarily to the best of the military intelligence communities not world with the game you know the same people who are there who were there five or ten years ago there has been no change they see the world in a certain way even if that doesn't necessarily align with reality right let's let's go back to yemen for a minute on the yemeni government's involvement in these airstrikes the pro-forma president ali abdul fully transfer power to his vice president back in february to
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quell the arab spring on ras so he was very complicit with the u.s. air strikes and his vice president seems to be even more so because more strikes have happened in yemen so is it only the u.s. that is. advocating for these drone strikes to save american lives and kill or enemies in the process or is it yemen as well well there are some other factors at work here so the more complex issue first of all there are people who are opposed to the status quo in the middle east many of them may or may not be associated with al qaeda most of them or islamised said at the moment sunni islamists governments would want to stamp our are happy in many cases to see these people vanish so there's a willingness to work with us to see their political opponents if you will people who could be destabilizing vanished from the scene there's another aspect and that's money if you want to do business with the united states if you want to benefit from foreign aid especially
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a poor country like yemen then you're predisposed to cooperate with us and you're not going to obstruct us because to obstruct us puts you in a very difficult position and very quickly we are just about our time but i do want to ask you if it was up to you what would we do with these drone strikes well i would suspend them immediately unless i. could be persuaded that they were having a positive impact on i just don't see that they are at this point i think we need to suspend the reexamined the whole process reexamined who are killing in the water right colonel douglas macgregor thank you so much for joining us douglas macgregor is a u.s. retired army colonel and also the executive vice president of mcgregor group l.l.c. while a military can see that most of america's enemies are abroad and that isn't stopping them from taking a critical look at the people back home a warning now to camera camera happy tourists be careful and next time you take photos in public it turns out that photographers can be detained as a potential terrorist threat the l.a.p.d.
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has now released a new counterterrorist guideline that is coming under serious scrutiny. lindo has the story. never existing. before you ever think about. the man you see surrounded by six arrests in miami police officers is photographer and blogger cargoes miller while on a public street during an occupy protest in january miller was a rested after a minute's camera at officers and the recording us they don't want to record of them. they really want to put a scare factor into it miller who runs the blog photography is not a crime has been arrested three times for exercising his first amendment right of freedom of speech and expression according to many police departments across the country including the los angeles police miller's actions fall into the realm of potential terrorism this is the police state that people have been talking about or have talked about in years past this is no longer paranoia
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or conspiracy this is where we're headed investigative reporter jason leopold compares los angeles's anti terror campaign to new york's controversial spying program l.a.p.d. officers have been given the green light to report photography and other legal activities to their counterterrorism division. here in los angeles journalists say they've been detained for doing just this taking photographs in front of the jail now free speech advocates believe this is part of a larger trend of law enforcement taken anti terror tactics to the extreme whatever you want to take pictures of the subway system a title would love to buy your picture so i want to know if you are in cahoots with al qaeda to sell these pictures to them for terrorist purposes photographer shaunie was detained by an overzealous los angeles sheriff's deputy who tried to connect me
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to al qaida that sheriff's department is now being sued but even lawsuits like shanny's are not deter and police from. i mean their anti terror crackdowns in the us are democracies and nice these days attorney jim lafferty and other civil libertarians are specially concerned about the l.a.p.d. policies given the department's history of violating public privacy throughout the decades is long as we do that and don't get totally into the fear we can kind of we can prevent that kind of return to a full fledged mccarthyism or some of the other sad periods in our history when fear won the day but lafferty believes the fear mongering in the media is partly to blame a chilling new warning about terror on u.s. soil leopold agrees also pointing the finger at our nation's leaders for using nine eleven as an excuse to create laws which in his view repress dissent and by late the constitution the public is quickly becoming desensitized to this and they also
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feel that they're powerless in a sense what can they possibly do about it as miller fights his latest legal battle he's convinced police tactics in fighting terror will ultimately backfire i guess to the point where there we have an issue we had a police officer why bother calling a police officer and when police news credibility they lost everything which started as a simple way to express improve claim his innocence miller now uses his blog to tell similar stories and continue his crusade freedom of photography in los angeles ramon the lindo are the top now as election day creeps even closer and the stakes to continue higher the battle over voter id law is a new front and is now front and center democrats claim that the law amounts to a disenfranchisement of minorities while republicans say that the barrier is not too high after all if a person needs an id to buy alcohol or port a plane why not extend that same ruling to people that choose to vote party's own
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christine friends out now takes a closer look at the state by state rundown of the voter id fight. well eight weeks from now voters across the united states will head to the polls to vote in an election that will determine everything from state and local leaders to who will be president for the next four years in a process known as democracy but leading up to that we have seen a continuing battle rage one fought for what some call reform and others call repression it's been planned for some time now and may manifest itself on election day but right now is taking shape in state capitals and courtrooms across this country but let's first take a look back at what's happening to the rights of voters in this country in the last two years fourteen states have passed several measures that restrict voting rights including the days and times polling places are open new change of address rules and in states like florida and iowa new laws which take away the right to vote
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completely from convicted felons who have served their time and have returned to society often as employed taxpaying citizens in several of these states and read new laws require all citizens to show a photo i.d. a move the disproportionately affects black and hispanic voters as well as the elderly and the young these fourteen states by the way it represent two thirds of the electoral college votes needed to win the presidency many of them as you can see traditional battleground states where every vote counts even more well last year texas governor rick perry signed a voter id bill into law a law that not only requires photo i.d. polling places but did not allow student i.d.'s to be used concealed carry i.d.'s however were just fine here's part of his celebre tory speech. to our duty to ensure that it watches are fair. reproach accurately reflecting the will be. that's what voter id is all about. we're fucked in the
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will of the people in the room with governor perry and those who look like them may have in fact been to more accurately what the law is all about now perhaps that's why a few weeks ago three federal judges voted unanimously to block that texas law finding it intentionally discriminatory but there are many more still in the works i'm talking about states like ohio and pennsylvania in traditionally democratic districts in ohio hours at polling places that were decreased later brought back after a lawsuit by the obama administration that law still may head to the supreme court and later this week in pennsylvania the state supreme court there is scheduled to hear arguments on the voter id law you may remember a few months back what a republican leader in the state house said voter id which is going to allow governor romney to win the state of pennsylvania done well not quite done actually
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but we should know more in the days to come with more coming also in states like florida and wisconsin as well the bottom line here is that these laws are being compared by many to poll taxes and literates literacy tests methods used in an era we thought was behind us all these people marching here including dr martin luther king. he's in the middle they were fighting for a dream that at least some of them got to see realized in the voting rights act of one thousand nine hundred sixty five and when he signed it president lyndon johnson said this most basic right of all was the right to choose your own leaders and that the history of this country in large measure is the history of the expansion of that right of the people he said this is a history that may be about to begin a new chapter the outcome of which has yet to be determined now i'm not one who ever likes to fear monger but what's happening now has the makings of a perfect storm of disaster that some say could make the results of the november sixth election take
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a whole lot longer to be determined deja vu anyone. we want to bring this to your attention and to make sure this discussion stays in the public eye so that when election day comes there won't be any surprises and christine in washington for our . capital account is up next let's check in with lauren lyster of lauren what do you have today do you think fireflies if you see any around over the summer in the d.c. area i have you know they're pretty magical maybe arguably the only bug that is so magical but when you shine a light where fireflies are swarming then it just you can see where you're going they stop lighting up then you know they just look like the bugs that they are what does this tell us about the eurozone debt saga we're going to talk about it on our show all right lauren lester thank you from will all of you tune. but that does it for now for your for the news from one of the stories we covered go to youtube dot com slash r.t. america or check out our web site r t dot com slash usa i'll see you back here in
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