tv [untitled] September 27, 2012 5:00pm-5:30pm EDT
coming up on our t.v. americans are fat that much has been made clear by multiple studies but obesity isn't just a health risk it's a threat to national security interests as well well weigh in on the issue in a minute. plus g.i. joe meet the next generation of american troops hardwired to defend u.s. interests coming up we'll tell you how the defense department is teaming up with their own scientists to create the perfect soldier. clone who was running.
this time for us to see if persecution. to see if persecution had real people girl in a sauna takes the u.n. general assembly by storm demanding justice for sell the wiki leaks staffers and bradley manning what's next for the wiki leaks founder will sit down with his spokes person. it's thursday september twenty seventh five pm here in washington d.c. i'm liz wall and you're watching our team. of the obesity epidemic in america is obviously a threat to national health but is it a threat to national security this week a report was released by an advocate advocacy group called mission readiness that suggests this is the case the report was titled still too fat to fight and connected the nation's obesity rate with military effectiveness saying increased obesity could. poses
a challenge to national security as fewer and fewer people are eligible to keep up with the physical demands of the service so that could suggest that america's waistline as it expands so too will the waistlines of our soldiers you're looking at how this evolution could be playing out for the future soldier far from boasting let it build a looks like that transition is happening for those already in the service that a permanent offense apparently spends about one billion dollars a year on medical care for weight related health problems for more on this catherine man ward a managing editor for reason joins us now katherine welcome. so could obesity really pose a threat to national security as this report suggests. you know i'm always a little bit wary when people say that a new policy or a new law is for the children and i think it's doubly true that you should be nervous when somebody says that this is for our national military readiness you
know kids are fat grownups are fat clear but the idea that taking what our soldiers aren't supposed to be fat right well it will but luckily we don't have a draft we don't all have to serve in the military and. i think that taking junk food out of high schools is not going to be the be all and end all of american military readiness well you just said to kids are fat adults are fat just so matter of fact we i mean do we just accept that fact or i mean maybe it's not a good thing and we should try to change it i mean i don't i don't know who you mean when you say we i think the american people the american people are luckily not a single entity of single mind i mean if individuals want to lose weight great if our military only wants to accept people who are thin and great i don't think that means that all of us should be denied twinkies a school lunch i would meet you but that doesn't matter what i think all right so the group is now calling on congress to support stricter nutrition standards for
school lunches could that be the answer i think that's one place where government intervention is completely acceptable school lunches are terrible and they're basically mandatory or they're both that on kids who are have no choice but to be in school and have no choice but to use the lunch for the most part so yeah i think it's great that those standards are improving at the same time i think you know a kid buying m. and m. school after having their government approved school lunches is not really the business of three hundred you know generals and admirals who have gotten together to release this report all right. so now one in four americans young american adults are too overweight to join the military so we are seeing that this problem is kind of spilling over and the number one reason it's the number one reason preventing adults from young adults that is from enlisting so we see that there is a connection there. there is but there are actually lots of other reasons people can list including that they have a criminal record
a lot of those people have criminal records for drug convictions so i think you might equally take this report is evidence that we need to rethink the way we're fighting the war on drugs or we need to rethink our requirement that you have a high school degree to enlist lots of ways we could broaden. the pool without having without the nation's wafl on all right in addition to this report that we had three hundred retired generals and admirals they signed on to indicate that the obesity problem has become a serious issue for national security so we have some pretty high ranking members saying hey listen up. this obesity problem could be affecting our safety our national security. i think a lot of those guys are the same guys who thought that the war in iraq was a super great idea and i think many of them turned out to be wrong about that they might be wrong about this too all right so i made what solution do you propose that . you know i think that this is always have been always should be
a matter of individual responsibility if people want to lose weight that's great there are tons of ways for them to do that there's multi multi billion dollar industry devoted to helping them do that i think that school lunch nutrition should be improved and i think education campaigns are a good idea but i think bans on soda sizes bans on drugs would in schools that kind of thing is more of a symbolic act of been something that's actually going to help and i think the military readiness thing is is just another rhetorical move on the part of people who want to restrict our choices ok but it is a fact that americans are getting fatter and along with getting fatter comes you know risks of heart disease risk of diabetes risk of all kinds of health problems so we see this trend it's becoming more and more of a problem at what point do you say this national epidemic is a problem and we have to step in we have to do something from letting it to prevent
it from getting worse. you know i think we genuinely get to the point where we cannot dock our armed forces with men and women who are physically fit. first of all that's the least of our problems as a nation if our health crisis got not far second not to be overly what about this but isn't this campus for i mean if you take a bunch of eighteen year old men and women and make an effort to get them into good physical condition maybe that's going to cost a little more money but i think the flipside where we're saying we have to revamp everything about american nutrition and take away choices isn't a better option already bootcamp. you know not as many potato chips are laying off of cat fat and calories i guess you have to decide which one is less painful we've put up for this this image there want to bring it up to kind of shows the evolution of the american soldier let's put that out there i think it just really ill and there it is the evolution of the american soldier you know typically they're fed we
see you know from the revolutionary war to the civil war to world war two to the vietnam war i don't know what time twinkies became available and you know things along that nature that contributed to the expanding waistline but we have that image there i mean could that be our soldier of the future catherine. you know i think actually if you were to look at the underlying physical health of a revolutionary war soldier versus you know our typical soldier today i'm going to guess that guy is actually not in better health and certainly an expert on this but infectious be the genetic diseases there are all kinds of things going on back then that we actually have great cures for now and that don't what people anymore the fact that we have a little bit higher cholesterol a little bit more padding around the middle. i think it's easy to overstate the extent to which that actually undermines our national that is a very very good point just because you're skinnier does not mean you're healthier at all. catherine thank you so much for weighing in on this topic that was
a catherine mangalore and managing editor for reason thanks for having me. we talk a lot a lot about the future of war warfare playing out in cyberspace the what if military conflict will be more of a war of the minds well new brain science is could make this possible and agency of the department defense is research in ways to enhance military tactics by enhancing the mind be agency as darpa or the defense advanced research projects agency by making soldiers more alert to drugging the enemy altering the mind could change the battlefield as we know it details about what exactly darpa is working on the details in the book you see right there mind wars brain science in the military and the twenty first century the author is jonathan miranda he is also a professor at the university of pennsylvania has been following darpa's actions and joined us earlier to reveal what he's found out. in the ancient world you really couldn't do much to improve a war fighter except to give
a brilliant speech if you were a commander in the one nine hundred centuries depression army tried cocaine in the twentieth century nicotine and caffeine and sometimes if you have to walk over the hill into certain death or near certain death you drink a lot of alcohol but we are getting a little more familiar with how the brain actually works now for example neuroscience at the now understand what parts of the brain react most to stressful conditions and if you can understand that then maybe you can start to understand the neural pathways that can be managed with drugs or or with sophisticated external electrical or magnetic systems that can as the scientists say down regulate these stress reactions so that's one that's one option as well it looks like these and you listed methods that have been used in the path of these methods are getting much more sophisticated we're looking at learning a lot more about the brain now partly because we have ways of looking inside the brain these amazing images of people who are looking at something or experiencing
something in different parts of the brain are activated obviously we're going to get a lot more about genetics in the way our genes control the way our our brains are laid out it even before birth and the way they change over time so we're getting to a point now where we're really understanding the mechanisms of the brain that were not available to previous generations now with this new information i mean how can we use that to enhance our soldiers you know it turns out to be a lot harder than the science fiction writers of told us for a long time we're not going to be seeing robots soldiers per se anytime soon we're not going to be even in terms of national security we're not going to be seeing mind reading machines at the airport but there are more subtle things for example the biggest problem that soldiers have in combat is just staying awake and alert that turns out to be really hard to manage with anything better than coffee but there are things that are now available in the marketplace. that are called the anti sleep pill and that might turn out to be an enhancer for better than spin
amphetamines which pilots have been using for a while better than and said to me as a compliment to speed so that might help. the other idea is or might one of the many other ideas as you might be able to use little magnetic pulses which are already being used to help people learn things faster. or to help you make you more attentive so there are some more subtle ways than making a robotic soldier or really i think on the horizon i also want to get to so in addition to enhancing our own soldiers i know you talk in your book about being able to alter the mind of our enemy how can we do that you know the best way to do that is to make them think they're going to lose there's nothing like old fashioned propaganda to do that that's been around for a long time. there have been at ideas as you know about putting who's the general like l.s.d. in the water supply or maybe getting them in some kind of aerosol none of that really works very well so i think compromising the brains of other soldiers is
going to be pretty much an old fashioned use of uses of propaganda and this information in the near future but in the in the long run if people can figure out ways to use aerosols that won't be scattered by the weather it won't be made ineffective by the sunlight those things are of some interest i think i did some reading and possibly using oxy toast said an enemy of the is that a possibility so you know oxytocin is something that probably you and i are making in our brains right now it kind of happens when we're having a nice conversation went out with friends we're on and when we're on a date when you're having a baby i've had that experience by my wife has and we make oxytocin it stimulates the letdown we flex it's it's a social trust kind of a kind of neuro hormone it does a lot of things but it one of things it does it makes us comfort with other people who want to engage. other people so some people have speculated that if you gave
somebody oxytocin in an interrogation situation that you might make whoever walks into the room the good cop that you might be a little more loose and more willing to talk but it's an interesting idea it would it would be illegal under the chemical weapons treaty it would be illegal under international law it would be illegal to use that to be a chemical weapon so you really couldn't do that but it's something that people have speculated about interesting and i know that you were able to learn a lot about this darpa. how are you able to learn so much about it and to kind of get the inside scoop and there is darpa open to sharing their scientific research you know it's really interesting the old american radical journalist stone used to say people ask me how i can get this information i just read the newspaper i just keep track of things it's amazing how much is really available in open source and that's all i needed to use to kind of connect the dots and to see where not only the u.s. but other military establishments are growing with respect to the brand really
interesting jonathan thank you so much for coming into the studio today that was an event in what i know author of the mind wars brain science in the military in the twenty first century and professor at the university of pennsylvania. also had an artsy president obama had the oh dass city of hope and we could skull founder julian assange has the audacity to call him out on his apocrypha going front of the international community coming up next the wrath of a speech to the. here
is mitt romney trying to figure out the name of that thing that we americans call a dollar. i'm sorry i'm just a guy who cares an awful lot like you sir are a fool you know what that is my terrorist cells in your neighborhood all want to listen to feature stories and be on limbaugh all the christian point you. can still is still going to. say no call for you to distract us from what you and i should care about because they're a profit driven industry that sells a sensationalistic garbage he calls it breaking news i'm happy martin and we're going to break this that. looks.
. our t. is the state run english speaking russian channel it's kind of like al-jazeera. russia today has an extremely confrontational stance when it comes to u.s. . co-founder julian assange has shaken things up at the united nations general assembly speaking the video from the ecuadorian embassy in london a songe addressed the assembly excuse me last night we agree.
and so determination and not merely american or western values but universal values and we agree with the president when he says that we must speak on a sleep if we are serious about these ideals it is time for president to do the right thing and surely the forces of change. no the final word in find the. wasn't covered a lot of ground condemning the treatment of accused whistleblower bradley manning calling out president obama for cracking down on wiki leaks while hailing free speech in the middle east and the arab spring this information has just been released the suggest the u.s. has declared a songe anime of the state assad has been holed up in the ecuadorian embassy in london for one hundred days now as the u.k. threatens to arrest him the moment he's set foot outside of the building to the foreign ministers of ecuador in the u.k. met in hopes of finding a resolution to the diplomatic standoff for more on these latest developments wiki
leaks spokesperson kristinn hrafnsson joined us earlier first talked about the u.s. the clearing a saw each enemy of the state. was a very serious that the u.s. military made this. clear to basically we can leave and to be this comes up in the resignation into a possible corp of service woman in in the u.s. military working in the u.k. . she was. under suspicion of having. cooperated with we can leaks and they will find communicating with the enemy. there is the implication of if we can use as indeed. we all know what that means basically so i mean does that mean that he's essentially now in the same category as the taliban are a member of al qaeda that would seem to be the implication of that is that the how
it's interpreted by the legal team of julian response wow want to play a clip now of a jillion assad himself addressing the u.n. g.a. last night the u.s. is ministration it in trying to rig. a national regime of secrecy and the. discussion. can be sentenced today to life imprisonment or espionage and journalists from the media organization. well there is a saw and has expressed fear that he could face the death penalty if he indeed does get extradited to the united states but at this point the u.s. has not issued any criminal charges so why does assad and fear this worst case scenario. not officially that are indications that
a sealed secret indictment might already be in please we are not sure that those would be documents. indicating that. when you look at the the scope of the persecution against the wiki leaks the forty two thousand documents that have been in the attempt to find ways to indict julian and to possibly others associated with we can lose if you look at the grand jury the proceedings in this last year in secrecy in virginia of trying to find ways and means to to prosecute julian our sons you see that is a real danger here and we see from evidence that have been leaked and that there are references when people have been subpoenaed to the grand jury to the espionage act of nineteen seventeen which carries the death penalty so it's a real and serious threat and as you look to along with the way things have played out for his whistleblower bradley manning as i guess the president of what could
happen to him if he were actually dated to the u.s. . we'll look at the miter jerome but bradley manning is absolutely horrible in that he was kept support more than eight months under current conditions which were conditions of torture as categorized by the special rapporteur of torture one members of the u.n. so i could be expected if he is actually now to to listen to some more remarks made by julian assange and last night where he refers to president obama and his speech before the u.n. i'm reminded of the phrase the audacity of hope you can say that the president of the united states is not or dayshift or there's no or the city for the united states government to take credit for the last two years of progress. or they just for him to say on tuesday the united states supported the forces of
change in the arab spring to new zealand history did not begin in december two thousand and ten and he did not set himself on fire so barack obama could be re-elected. all right so we just heard a sound pointing to what he sees as president obama being hypocritical when he sees when he advocates free speech in the middle east why does he think the president is using the arab spring for political gain well it is obvious he is trying to use it for political gain because he's a politician and is a hypocrite because if you look at how the u.s. was supporting dictators that were overthrown ben ali regime in tunisia and mubarak going egypt they were had full support of the u.s. government up until the last moment when it was obvious that they would be pushed aside by the popular uprising in this region and they even tried to have a. who would succeed mubarak in egypt in their. prime
candidates was that was the one who had been overseeing the torture chambers and through mubarak regime so of course it's hypocrisy to try to claim some credit and support for the awakening and want to get to a meeting an important meeting that took place today between the foreign secretary william hague and his ecuadorian counterpart was there any progress made in this diplomatic stalemate that has been in suing for the past one hundred days. according to my information there was nothing definite that came out of this in ocean lucian but the ecuadorian so working very hard in the coming up with ideas and keeping the dialogue open to doing a fantastic job so i'm very hopeful that in the end there will be a solution and that and julian signs will be allowed to save passes at the embassy in london to work with them but there hasn't been any measurable progress made in
terms of reaching a solution not to my knowledge but as long as people are talking and long as the u.k. government is not threatening to storm the embassy in ecuador in the. few weeks ago that can be called progress ok here we are a son has been holed up for one hundred days now surely that is taking some kind of a toll on him how would you describe it as andre right now well many i met him in person in london few days ago and he's in good spirits and he's holding up pretty well he's been taking care of been very busy of course working and keeping a strict schedule but of course it takes a toll to be locked inside for all this time but he is strong man and to him and he can hold out for a long time now would you say his remaining whole fall i mean how does he see this playing out what options is he looking at what i think he is hopeful that there
will be a solution on this and i think as here is hope and that is what. we all share and we can lease we hope that justice will prevail and that's what keeps us strong and keeps us going all right chris and really appreciate you coming on the show that was like your league spokesperson kristinn hrafnsson. we have an update tonight on the story we've been following for months the university of california at davis has reached a financial agreement but the protesters who are pepper sprayed during a campus protest last november you probably remember this video. this or jason pike's actions caused an uproar nationwide images of the police lieutenant spraying orange pepper spray in the face of nonviolent protestors became a rallying point for the occupy wall street movement last week the yellow county district attorney's office in california said in
a statement that there was insufficient evidence to prove the use of force was illegal so he's not going to be charged in this case the university of california is governing board last week reached a proposed settlement with twenty one current and former students who sued after being hit with the pepper spray the terms of the settlement have now been released each of the twenty one people who are pepper sprayed will get thirty thousand dollars settlement also calls for the u.c. davis chancellor to a formal apology to each student and alumni who were pepper sprayed or arrested. well breaking the sat is coming up in thirty minutes here on our tail let's check in with abby martin to see what is on today's agenda abbi well we look forward to what's going on loosely you were just talking about the occupy wall street protests that pepper spray cop is finally getting you know a friendly getting some compensation for that but you're the mainstream media was painting the occupy wall street protests here not very good no not at all exactly they were saying you know they were animals smashing stuff breaking stuff dirty
hippies what's going on in spain in greece right now is totally insane the way the me is painting them come to the difference so we're going to talk about that we're talking about the ever expanding surveillance state facial recognition data mining tracking trap wire how it all affects you and i and everyone else that just uses social media online and most importantly was this week marks the eleventh anniversary of the anthrax attacks and we are billowing this case wide open i mean it's the most botched case in recent history. totally blowing it open stay tuned breaking the set right a lot to look forward to thanks for that update that's coming up in a half hour but that is going to do it for the news but for more on the stories we cover check out our you tube channel you tube dot com slash r t america our web site r t dot com slash usa will be back here at eight pm.