tv Consider This Al Jazeera March 8, 2014 9:00am-10:01am EST
abuse. the death toll has risen to 21. >> a world record in the philippines - you are looking at pictures of thousands of women standing in a giant formation standing in a giant formation of the symbol for female. thank you are watching, i'm morgan radford. a growing number of russian forces flex their power. what can and should western nations do a new video hammers home the suffering of millions of children in syria. ecigarettes, are they a gate wait to the real thing? here is more on what's ahead. in ukraine, the crisis over
cripple continues. >> russia welcomes the crimeans to join the federation. >> 30,000 russian troops in crimea. >> whether it's about talks, whether it's about sanctions, the russians are holding very strong. >> the united nations is asking venzuela for permission to send in human rights observers. >> the opposition says the government is using motorcycle gangs to break up demonstrations. >> the the 2014 paralimpics. >> they decided against boycotting the games. any escalation would result in the ukrainian team leaving. >> ecigarettes. >> a substitute nicotine delivery system. >> studies found out ecigarette use more than doubled. >> it's increasing so rapidly that we are really concerned about what we are going to see in the future.
>> we begin with a de russia refusing to negotiate and russian forces showing no signs of ever leaving crimea. ukrainian border guards say the number of troops has swelled to 30,000. a on friday a military truck smashed through the gates of a key missile defense post while masked armed men stopped european military observers from entering the country for a second straight day. russian ships called on the ukrainians to surrender. >> after all that's happened, i think we need to secede. we need to secede because i don't want to live with fascists. >> the crimean prime minister said there is no invasion. >> we accept the help, people coming from russia to join ourself-defense units. terms of occupation or invasion, there is no russian army. >> russia's parliament announced support for a vote by crimeans
to break away from ukraine and paving the way for scruple to be observed into russia in a couple of weeks. >> good to have you on the show, jennifer. 30,000 troops. another ukrainian base stormed, european observers turned away. the russian parliament supporting the vote that might lead today crimea breaking around from ukraine. we have heard a lot of c crimeans. >> about signature % of ethnic russians here, antonio, and, you know, although interestingly, until a couple of days ago, they went really talking secession. they look toward moscow for support. now, they have a lot of support. they welcome the russian troops when they came here on sunday. and now that they are emboldened and they feel they have that
power, we see a lot of political move. here? sevastopol, the town council seems to try to predetermine the outcome of the referendum on march 16th when crimeans get to choose. the crimean parliament has done the same, moving towards russia and today we saw crimean politicians head to moscow where they got a very, very warm welcome. so, it seems like everything is moving that way. there are those who are not happy, antonio, that crimean could become part of russia. not least of all the "t's" tartars. they will boycott the referendum. they don't think it's legal and they feel like even if they vote "no," it somehow shows that they endorse the referendum. and, of course, you have about 15% of ethnic ukrainians here concerned about the outcome of that referreferendum.
they may feel they don't have any place here. >> you have reported flights from kiev are leaving from the international terminal, not the domestic terminal at the airport. is this looking more and more like it's a done deal that crimean is going to end up a part of russia? >> we have to kind of put that in perspective. it's a smart move to try and create a fact on the ground, but, you know, the sevastopol airport is a small airport. we are not talking, you know, moving things huge distances across john f. kennedy airport or anything like that. the domestic -- the domestic terminal and the international terminal are maybe 100 feet apart. it's such a small airport they don't have luggage trolleys yet. but it does make a point that flights to kiev leave to the international airport, those here trying to make it separate from ukraine, trying to make the point on the ground. but there is a lot to go with this. if the referendum goes the way
that the pro-russians would like it to and the people here vote to become part of russia, then, of course, there are a lot of things that have to be changed. customs, taxes, borders. how is all of that going to work? and, of course, the huge question: what happens to the ukrainian military here? right now, those sailors are blockaded in baracks, on their ships, out in the harbors. they have pledged their allegiance to ukraine. the officers say that if their commanding officers tell them to change, they will do what they say. but, you know, kiev is saying they are not going to recognize this referendum, it's totally illegal so it's unlikely they will tell them to stand down. those are serious questions. >> so many moving parts in this crisis. al jazeera america correspondent jennifer glasse in sevastopol. thank you very much. katherine stoner, a a
deputy director and senior research scholar at the center on democracy at stanford university. she joins us from there tonight. she is an author and expert on the domestic and international politics. we are joined by yorg forbreg. he joins us from berlin. here in new york, we have david roe, an investigative reporter, contributor to the atlantic. his latest piece: crain is the greatest challenge to geo politics since the cold war. david, ukraine says 30,000 troops are now in crimean, 43 international observers were not allowed to get into crimean. we saw today the truck that witness into this air base that controls the air space in that area and we saw earlier this week how a u.n. envoy was sent away. is putin escalating rather than deescalating? >> i think the issue here is putin is escalating, but in his
mind, he's not escalating. the danger here is that the two sides seem to talk past each other. i don't know for sure, but it seems like vladimir putin beliefs it was some western sponsored intelligence operation not a legitimate expression of the will of the crainian people. he feels like it's a plot to deny him to the warm-water port to the russian navy. he is not backing down. the steps taken so far by the white house are not resolving the crisis. it's unclear what comes next. >> i know katherine stoner is talking about much of what putin says is happening in ukraine as propaganda. former u.s. ambassador to russia, michael mcpaul says the chances are slim dem acy will work. he reacted to the news of the russian parliament saying if russian government endorses crimean referendum, will they allow and endorse similar votes
in the republics in the russian federation? he is saying putin is a hypocrite, that all is fine and dandy in crimean, for crimea to determine what it wants but then it won't allow chechnia or anybody else to do that within the federation and would want to separate from the he federation and others including national security advisors ravinsky said putin wants to rebuild the ussr. does he have some sort of policy of soft annexation where he wants to grow russia into a bigger, stronger country, maybe not as big as the soviet union but significant? >> so a couple of things there. i don't -- i think using the term "soviet union" is always confusing because when you think of "soviet union," you think of communism or you should, statement. that was a very specific
political and economic system. >> that's definitely not the system that putin would like to impose within russia proper or within former soviet republics like ukraine or georgia or moldova, et cetera. that said, he does and has openly said he has a policy of a u raiseian union, a monetary union and perhaps a loose political union of some former soviet states. before they were soviet states, they were territories of russian empire. so, i think brezinski is perhaps incorrect in using the term "soviet union." a more specific term would be what penult things of as natural allies or the natural zone of influence of the russian zone of empire. to many average russians and putin, it's a perfectly natural and reasonable thing to do.
and it's simply making normal what they think exists de facto anyway. >> i want to go to you and talk about sanctions. u.s. and canada are talking a big game on sanctions. they have announced sanctions. the eu is being more shaugs. dav cautious. david cal ron says 28 countries have to agree on what they want to do. is there any chance that the west will the have one voice on russia? >> i think it is amazing what we saw coming out of the e.u. summer yesterday was a three-staged. the first stage is basically to give diplomacy and the political solution of the crisis yet another chance but within days and with a very limited time frame, this is now the time for the russian side, also, to move in the direction of political solution. should that fail, the second stage would be measured targeted
sanctions against some of those and the russian leadership especially who are responsible for the escalation of this situation. and the third step should these two first steps not succeed in deescalating the signatures would then be economic sanctions. now economic sanctions is something that is always very difficult to agree on here in europe. >> said, there seems to be a majority of countries at the moment already that are supporting a tough borderline and the imposition of sanctions against russia with the exception of two or three larger countries. there is obviously the united kingdom worried about the impact sanctions may have on the city of london and the financial sector there. ands there is obviously germany, which is traditionally very cautious when it comes to sanctions. >> david, as you wrote, you see
the ukraine as the biggest geo political challenge since the cold war. do you think any of this is going to work. >> it's not clear at this point. actually, there was a former deputy national security advisor jim jeffrey under the bush administration that dealt with the georgia crisis in 2008. he saw this as this major geopolitical crisis because it sets such a dangerous standard. if you remember back in the fall, china declared an air defense zone out of the blue on its own across thousands of miles of the pacific and demanded any aircraft going through there register with the chinese. the fear is that you are going backwards towards some sort of 19th century, you know, economic and political zones controlled by china and russia. >> big powers. >> and the u.s. it really does sort of undermine at least the post-cold war system. the russian argument is that the u.s. undermined it by going in to kosovo and iraq.
you have russian troops with no ig sig nias okay paying an area. many people do support secession, but going about it this way with military force is obviously very questionable. >> katherine, former u.s. secretary of defense, robert gates talked in his memoirs about what happened in georgia when the soviet union -- excuse me. i keep make that mistake. when russia went into georgia? >> the cliff. >> in 2008 and took over a couple of provinces there. he writes that the georgia response was par for the course for brussels, talking about the european union, that it was a tepid response. he said it reminded him of the so far yes, it is in meeting czechoslavakia in 1968, as horrified, everything was back to business as usually with the soph yes, it is within three or four months. do you think that's what's going to happen now? >> i think there are some pretty thick ties now between russia
and europe. and in particular, economic ties and, so, earlier it was mentioned the potential impact on the london financial sector, in particular, the british financial sector, if sanctions were imposed on russia because there are so many rish russians who own property, who own assets in england now. >> wasn't the case in 1968, of course. so slightly different situation in that respect. with respect to german, well, they get a lot of natural gas from actually the bulk from russia. you know, again, they are a little hamstrung in terms of how far they can go. >> yorg what do businesses -- russia is threatening to retaliate if we go forward with sanctions. how hard will that hurt the european union? >> i think it wasn't hurt the european union nearly as hard as the russians are trying to portray to us. let me ask you, professor
stoner, these mostly from germany because that's the country i am most familiar with. in german trades, german foreign trades, russia accounts for four % of our volume. we are exporting less to russia than to poland. 4% is a fairly meager figure. this doesn't represent a major trade partner. it's one of many. russia is not the elephant that it is often made out to be economically for us. let me take a second figure because it relates to the energy resources europe imports about 40% of its natural gas from russia. 40. germany is more or less in that league. these 40% natural gas from russia represent 7% of the energy production. 7% is, again, not an
overwhelming figure. in turn, for the russian federation, oil and gas exports to europe represent about 70% of state revenue. so, if there were sanctions, then very clearly there would be a bigger fallout on the russian side than european side. >> in that context, katherine, do you think that poont will be able to to be reasoned with? >>utin will be able to to be reasoned with? >>? >> i am not sure he fully understands. he understands a lot about the way the russian economy works. i have been in meetings with him where he has been quite sophisticated about it. he understands oil and gas the best, i would say, so it would be hard to believe he would noting cognizant of that fact and that this is going to negatively affect the russian economy. >> said, you know, the way all of this is being presented in russia, even by, you know, colleagues at russian universities who i know well and who i would think of as relatively progressive, the way this is all presented is that it is really bandit did and far
right nationals in john boehner who are taking over ukraine and we are supporting them and we don't understand the situation and so they might do this to protect their own national interests and even the ukrainian people from themselves basically. >> i do think yorg is right about all of those bad things that will happen to the russian economy. >> that's a point of leverage we could potentially -- or a point of information we could potentially put in front of mr. putin. >> do you agree? >> i do t professor stoner told me before the polls in russia show 60% popular support for what putin is doing. he has iron control of the media there. and he is going to keep using that. he's really kind of, i think, over the last decade, out maneuvered the west in terms of, you know, using the sales to europe of gas to strengthen the economy and the military and he has taken firm control of the media. so we are sort of flat-footed here the question is: does he
understand this in nationalism is a powerful force? you know, he is under pressure now to follow through , and ukraine may not back down. >> we appreciate you all joining us tonight. turning to the turmoil in venzuela where the death toll has risen to at least 20 since protests against the government of the maduro began in february. the latest is a soldier and a civilian shot and killed thursday. meanwhile, the u.n. high commission is demanding answers from the government on allegations security forces are punishing protest orders with ash terri detentions, beatings and torture. for more, i am joined by al jazeera america paul beben. good to see you. what is the situation like there tonight? >> reporter: well, once again, antonio, as you and i have been talking all week. it's another tense night here after a night of very serious deadly violence last night. at least two people dead. we heard records of three. we were over near altimira
square, which has been the scene of clashes night after night. the deadliest took part over close to the patatio bario. we were at that building today where residents told us that national guardsmen stormed the building, came in, followed by members of the kolectivos, the para military groups, would be the best description, often accused of being armed and supported by the government to intimidate the opposition, to intimidate protesters, stormed into this building, torched a car. it's not clear what else happened, but that's the part of town where at least two people were killed. so, very intense clashes continuing here. >> while that's going on in the capitol, you have done some reporting in sunkistole, in the and easy where the protests began. what are you hearing happening there? >> that's right.
>> it is difficult to confirm some of this. it's in the western part of the country. we are speaking to sources there telling us now the power plant, one of the main power plants at sann san cristobol has been cut and many people are living in the dark. they are telling us they are seeing tanks and an increase in the number of national guard troops. they are telling us people are actually beginingly to flee the city, that they are leaving and going to some kind of impromptu camp sprung up outside of the city where people from other parts of the western part of the country are going, from valencia and where the government crackdown has been more intention. this is where it goon, a city where government jets had been buzzing the city in the wake of these more intense protests. so, if these are -- if we can confirm these reports, it would certainly indicate in the west of the country things are getting increasingly dire. when you are talking about people fleeing a city, it starts to conjure up the spector of something like civil war.
>> obviously very scary. >> three former latin american presidents, actually, four former latin american presidents, including nobleprice peace prize winner oscar arias have accused the government of repress. they are calling forling printingsers to be freed. meanwhile, foreign ministers from around the region are planning to meet in chile next week and discuss the crisis. is there any indication that the maduro government will take part? >> well, given their tone this week and over the past few days, it certainly seems very unlik y unlikely. president maduro pronounced the expulsion of the ambassador t continued today reiterate their unwillingness to take assistance or any sort of observer missions from outsiders. the organize of american states, the oas, offering to send a mission. that was flatly rejected by the maduro government. so, it's hard to imagine how any other kind of coalition would be welcome here right now. the madu are.
o government seems to say this is our business. it's nobody else's business and we can take care of it. >> we have seen some of the most massive protests on weeks in karakas. are we expecting the same this weekend? >> we are hearing that there are large protests scheduled here and throughout the country this weekend and given the sense that things are continuing to rachet up here rather than cool down, it seems safe to say we will probably see some large protests over the weekend and, potentially, more clashes. there is really just no sense here, antonio, that there is any kind of dialogue beginning to open up. the two sides are not talking to each other. the in tmaduro continuing to ac the protesters of being sabateurs. being violent and illegal. we have seen, you know, some things here that can be described as nothing other than mob violence. i mean that is happening. it's hard to imagine how that kind of violence and wanton vandalism is going to advance the cause of the frosts and
there are divisions within the protest movement. we have spoken to students calling for a more peaceful, non-violent approach but that isn't trickling down to some who want to do damage. >> a real tragedy going on venzuela. al jazeera america's paul beban, thank you. coming up, an emotional new video from the organization, "save the children" brings the syrian refugee crisis home. hermella is tracking the top stories. >> job numbers came out today. we will look at what it means to be unemployed long-term in america. while you are watching, join the conversation on twitte twitter @ajconsiderthis and on our facebook and google+ pages.
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♪ the carnage continues in syria's civil war among adults and children. this amateur video shot friday shows a young girl being dragged from the rubble of a bombed out building in western syria. after nearly three years of brutal fighting, many people around the world have turned away from this horrible story, which is why save the children has marked the anniversary with a web video that imagines the syrian conflict as if it were happening in britain instead of syria ♪ happy birthday to you. >> make a wish. >> granny.
>> where are we? >> distant scre >>. >> dadd> daddy! ♪ happy birthday to you. ♪make a wish, darling. >> for more, i am joined from washington, d.c. by michael clausen, safe the children vice president for policy and humanitarian response. michael, the video is sadly very powerful. how many people have seen it? and what has the response been like so far? >> it's been a very, very strong response. i think over 13 and a half million viewers have seen that video. it was really our effort to help people connect with what's going
on over there by bringing it over here and removing the foreignness, and you are left to confront just the horror that children and families in syria face day-in and day-out. >> the numbers of children who's lives have been destroyed by syria's civil war are st staggering. more than 7,000 killed, 1.2 million are refugees. two and a quarter million have been denied an education. 5 million needy merge emergency help. there are all sorts of kids displaced within syria. this is the worst humanitarian crisis in the world today. >> it's horrific circumstances. that's why i think we are very encouraged so many people have viewed this film and there does seem to be growing empathy which we hope will turn into calls for action when we mark the third anniversary of the conflict in syria and really hope that the world can turn a corner and start both getting humanitarian aid to help people in syria, but, also, accelerate the process of bringing about a political settlement. >> talking about the humanitarian aid an incredible 18% of syrian children under 5
are refugees. >> means they have had to leave syria. if that same conflict were happening here in the united states, more than 1 in 40 american children of that age would have been driven from their homes. so is one of the issues here that the numbers have become so overwhelming and this has been going on for so long that it almost drives people away from giving rather than helping? >> i think the numbers are st staggering and sometimes people just feel numb and feel that there is nothing that they can do about it. but in point of fact, there are several things. one, there is certainly a lot of assistance that save the children and others are providing. support for that assistant will be able to put bread on people's tables, livelihoods, all sorts of supports. we need resources to be able to do that. but i think it's important that the world's leaders to understand people want to show solidarity and we need to open up channels for getting the
assistance in and bring about a political setsment. people can raise their voices. >> part of the problem is that they simply have not been terribly willing to negotiate, including about allowing humanitarian aid in. we are showing some of the horrible pictures from refugee camps. we saw how it snowed and it was freezing cold in places where people were living in tents in many cases. more than two and a half million syrians are struggling to survive outside of syria. and every day, we are seeing new pictures of fighting. it just seems to go on and on. what can people do to help save the chirp and other organizations who are trying to do what they can to help these people? >> right. so when i -- i have not been inside syria. but i have certainly visited our work in neighboring countries. save the children right now is reaching over a million people both inside syria, itself, and in the neighboring countries where, as you mentioned, large numbers of syrians have sought ref jopling. people can provide support to non-profits to do that kind of
wo work. they can encourage the government to step it up and make sure more humanitarian aid is getting to people inside syr syria. >> that's where the gap is right now. there is pretty good assistance being provided to refugees in jordan and lebanon and iraq and egypt. but one of the real shortfalls is support for people inside syria. and we have to do more to get the aid in. the security council passed a resolution realtime. it was a diplomatic breakthrough that has to translate into a humanitarian breakthrough. >> it's incredible to contemplate what this will mean with all of these children suffering, not getting education, what this will mean. michael clausen, thank you very much and best of luck to save the children and all of your efforts to help these kids. >> thank you for it. >> turning to immigration, president obama is finding himself on the defensive. he spoke thursday at a townhall with anchors from the two main american spanish language t.v. networks. it was supposed to be about obamacare but the topic quickly turned to immigration reform.
>> the leader of the latino organization called your administration and you, sir, as the border in chief. >> since i ran for president, i have been pushing for comprehensive i amgration reform and continue to push for comp prehencei immigration reform. i am the champion in chief for comprehensive immigration reform. >> as congress continues to dither on the issue of comp rehencei reform, is there a growing division between the white house and the latino community over immigration? we are joined from washington, d.c. by christina jiminez, of united we dream, the largest latin o youth led organization. thank you for being on "consider this." as we heard, the national council that is the largest latino advocacy group in the united states supported the president. last tuesday, the group's
president called the president the deporter in chief. the white house was not happy. they called the organization to complain. is there a growing split between the president and immigration advocates? >> thanks for having me here. absolutely. i mean what we are seeing right now is that the white house is on the defensive. we have over a thousand deportations happening every day. the latino and the immigrant community cannot stand by this a lot of longer. thousands of families have been ripped apart and what we are seeing is that not only the council of larosa came out. democratic leadership telling the president that this is -- deportations need to stop and that he needs to use his administrative 4 grant administrative relief for people. the hypocracy here is that you see the administration deporting almost 2 million people now. meanwhile, he says that he supports immigration reform. the president is deporting the same people that could bipt from
the leanlylation. >> that's the hypocracy that is leading latinos losing respect. >> listen top congressman gutteres, what he had to say this week. >> here, we have the last three presidents of the united states, bill clinton, george bush and barack obama with almost 2 million deported so far, barack obama has supported more people that live in the entire state of nebraska. no one has deported more people. a star first place goes to barack obama. >> christina, there are more illegal i am grants -- immigrants than there were in the past. how far is it. >> we are seeing the obama administration is the one that has deported the most number of people in the history of the united states. unfortunately, the administration is driving a deportation and enforcement system that is out of control and it's totally true. so that's why you are seeing now the pressure mounting.
the white house is feeling the pressure of organization and democrats that are coming out and saying, this needs to stop because these are the same people that could benefit from potential legislation in the future what would you like the president to do? because what can he realistically do through executive orders? isn't he just following the law? and if congress can't figure out what to do as we move forward, do you actually want him to move and act unilaterally? he has gotten in trouble because of that in the past. >> there is no doubt that the president has the legal authority to take action and stop deportations and grant administrative relief to the community right now. immigration law experts have said it. it's been proven. there is no legal argument here and you know, this seems to be a play that we have had in the past when dreamers,un aptt with dream and many dreamer organizations across the country to florida and others led a grassroots campaign demanding that the president stop deporting dreamers. the white house said, no, we
can't. the president does not have the legal authority. but we proved to the president that he had the legal authority. immigration law experts wrote a memo submitted to the white house demonstrating his legal authority. and we ended up winning on june of 2012. the president announced a deferred action program that stopped deporting dreamers and gave them administrative relief. we have played this game before. the white house right now has no where to hide. there is no question the pressure is mounting. he has the authority and they need to act and the community is really to make sure that we continue the pressure up so that he takes. >> certainly the battle will continue. christina jiminez, thanks for your time. it's time to see what's trending on the website. >> the job numbers are out today, 175,000 jobs were added. the unemployment rate ticked up to 6.67% from 6.6 in january. according to the report over the last few years, the typical
unemployed american has been out of work for longer periods than in any of the previous six decades. last month, the average unemployed person was out of a job for 260 days. take a look at this chart of post recession peaks of unemployment since 1948. outside of 2011 when the average unemployed person was out of work for 285 days, other years don't even get close. ashes asked you to share your stories behind your lock bout of unemployment. 39-year-old sean welker spent years as a teacher and counselor. he said i was filling out taco bell access and it is so demoralizing to say i am going to fight to get the $7 an hour job. how can i prove that i am better than this 17 sglooerld marchlena says when i was unemployed, i spent 8 hours a day volunteering and was hired. i recommending being a volunteer, doing something that you love. you can read more at the website, america.al jazeera america.com and share your stories with us on twitte
twitter @ajconsider this. >> thanks. are e cigarettes driving more kids to smoke? an author of a study that says that might be happening will join us. >> north dakota gets a new reason top smile. not that they needed one. >> al jazeera america presents extrodanary documentaries. colin comes from a long line of ferrymen. >> you're a riverman from start to finish... >> now he leaves home to see what life is like on the waters of bangladesh. >> it's absolutely filthy... >> he learns how difficult working ther can be. >> how do you say..."get out the way"? >> shoro >> can this brittish man find common ground with his local host? >> "must really take it out of mr. loteef"... >> toughest place to be a ferryman on al jazeera america
veepsal cigarette use among u.s. adolescents. are ecigarettess a gateway to the real thing or is it that more smokers are trying the electronic version in an effort to quit or out of curiosity? we are joined from san francisco by lauren dut are. dutra. she is one of the two or coach authors of electronic cigarettes among u.s. adolescents published in the journal of pediatric. the reaction to your study is varied. some say it shows they are a gateway to real cigarettes. is that being misreported or are you confident that smoking ecigarettess is leading adolescents to smoking real cigarettes? >> it's really tricky because as we have said many times this is cross sectional data. it's a snapshot in time. you know, i can't tell you that ecigarette use is causing kids to start smoking. i definitely can't make that kind of statement. i think it's possible it's a
gateway, but, you know, i think that's something that's left to be determined. we saw that the kids who were using ecigarettess were more likely to be tobacco cigarette smokers. >> i was surprised by some of the numbers. we see the use of electronic cigarettes doubled among teens between 2011, 2012 but there are studies that show the total number of teens smoking in general is declining. if ecigarettess are growing in leaps and bounds and they are a gatesway, should nn't be we be seeing an increase in smoking. >> yes. that's something we might see in the future. you have to keep in mind ecigarettess have only been popular in the u.s. for the last couple of years. the data we have on ecigarette use is from 2011 and 2012, and generally, the data on smoking prevalence from the cdc is a little older than that when we are talking about conventional tobacco cigarettes. >> it ends more in 2011 when thises which is about the time
ecigarette use was going up. >> exactly. >> it is associated with country smoking or having smoked cigarettes in the past and smokers who have ever used any cigarette were more likely to intent to quit smoking. couldn't those two findings be used to argue against e cigarettes being a gateway, that e cigarette use is coming really after people were already smokers? >> so the teenagers who were using e cigarettes and smoking conventional cigarettes were more likely to be planning to quit in the next year. but they were actually less likely to have stopped smoking. >> so, you mentioned briefly, but how significant was the number of teenagers who -- were you able to find kids who is first use of nicotine was an ecigarette and moved on to regular cigarettes? >> sure. so we saw that among middle school students who reported ever having used ecigarettess, 20% of them had never tried a tobacco cigarette, not even a
puff. and for high school students, we saw that 7% of those who used ecigarettess had never tried even a puff of a conventional tobacco cigarette. >> some smokers use other nicotine delivery devices like nicotine gum to quit smoking. >> uh-huh. >> how much do you think the use of e cigarettes is in that way because there have been some studies that show they are being used in great numbers to try to quit. tfrmths yeah, i think the tricky thing right now scathe a lot ofe existing studies have been online sur ay of people who are already buying ecigarettess. there are a lot of anecttotal reports of people quitting. it's something we have heard. based upon our stud, we really can't talk about what's going on with adults. all we know is that among adolescents, it looks like the ones who are using ecigarettes haven't quit even though they
were planning to do so. >> some of the strongest criticism comes from the boston university of public health, michael siegel. he said the authors seem to have an ax to grind. i could equally argue, he says, what this study shows is that people who are heavy smokers are attracted to ecigarettes because they are looking to quit which is what i just brought up. how do you respond to that? >> i would say what we found was that they were less likely to have stopped smoking. i think that counters the second argument right there. you know, i think the most important thing is to focus on the findings of the study. we could certainly talk about my personal opinions about ecigarettes but the most important thing is what the data shows. if you have read the study, you know what it shows. you know we are talking about high-quality data from the cdc, high quality analysis, and to, you know, very educated researchers really trying to express these findings not only in the paper, but, also, to the public, so, you know, the comments about our personal
opinions, you know, that's not going to be reflected in our findings in the paper. >> a lot of the study, i guess, will have to be continued to be done on this as it changes the whole world of smoking. >> i agree. >> good to have you with us. thank you very much. >> thank you. >> the best state when it comes to its residents wellbeing, data dive is neck. the nba, is it a better choice for league basketball players than college? on techknow, our scientists bring you a sneak-peak of the future, and take you behind the scenes at our evolving world. techknow - ideas, invention, life. on al jazeera america al jazeera america gives you the total news experience anytime, anywhere. more on every screen. digital, mobile, social. visit aljazeera.com. follow @ajam on twitter. and like aljazeera america on facebook for more stories, more access, more conversations.
it judges all 50 states on factors, emotional health, physical health and acce accessibili accessibility. >> last one is not north dakota's strong suit. but it came out on top overall. surprising because they were 19th after three years in the top tep. maybe its oil boom has had something to do with it. the state has the lowest unemployment rate in the country. looking at the rest of the top 5, the whole neighborhood there did well. south dakota came in second followed by nebraska, minnesota and montana. nearby colorado and iowa were also in the top tep. for states who feel they are stuck and they should look to south dakota and nebraska. both have improved after being in the 20s or 30s in the past five years. washington state also made a big leap. it was in the mid to low teens for four years before cracking the top 10 this year. some states seem to always be near the top, colorado among them. it placed 7th. one reason, low obesity rates. there doesn't seem to be much upward mobility at the bottom of the list.
west virginia has placed dead last for the last four years and the year before that, it was 49th. the same goes for states ranked 46th through 49 this year. they have mostly lived at or just outside the bottom 6 for the past half decade. you have got to wonder if cold gateway cool. no state in the southeast made the top 25. the only warmer states to do well were hawaii and california. coming up, the u.s. delegation snubs the opening ceremonies of russia's para olympics. is it an empty gesture, or will it carry some weight? unregulated.. >> easy access to guns... >> there's somewhere around 1600 women being held every year >> a deadly combination... >> death could have been prevented... >> her and a hundred more women... >> it hurts to the core >> faultlines al jazeera america's hard hitting... ground breaking... truth seeking... >> they don't wanna see what's really going on >> break though investigative documentary series
athletes set to compete. will it mean anything, or is it just a political stunt? al jazeera america dave zirin joins us from silver spring maryland, the sports editorial for "the nation." dave, as always, good to see you. the para olympics, less visible, fewer athletes but the u.s. gateway taking a stronger stance by not sending any officials. the u.s. did send a delegation to sochi for the olympics but made a statement by including openly gay athletes to send a message about russia's anti-gay laws. is it the right move to not send anybody with these moves? >> no. it's not the right move. it's not necessarily the wrong move either. what it is, is another half measure, not only by the united states but other european countries who are going to follow suit where they are showing that they are being really, really tough on putin and really angry about it but they want to make sure there is room open for negotiations. so, it mirrors a lot of the political and diplomatic moves we have seen. the athletes are still going to
be there. they are still going to compete. but there is not going to be a u.s. delegation along with them. to me, it's actually far less aggressive than what we saw in sochi, where the united states did not send a delegation that included president president or the vice president for the first time since 2000, to those particular olympics. as you said, sent openly lgbt members as a show of protest against putin. if they wanted to do something in this case, i mean i guess they could have sent a delegation that included donald rumsfeld, dick cheney and whoever would represent the reagan dynasty if they wanted to look tough on russia. but they didn't go that far, i guess. >> you have written a book about john carlos, famous for his black power absolute at the 1968 games. he said they are the perfect place to show a protests because no one will see it otherwise. where do we draw the leip, though? i know that you, in general, have supported olympic protests but some olympic protests do backfire.
>> it's certainly true. i believe very strongly and i know i speak for dr. john carlos when i say this, is that athletes have to be given the freedom to be able to to speak the their minds, because already, they are part of a political spectacle because that's what the olympics are. if sochi didn't prove that to us, then nothing will. if beijing didn't prove that to us, nothing will. heck, if 1984, los angeles, or '96, atlanta didn't prove that, nothing will. and so, it's a political spectacle anywheay. athletes are expected to wear the brands of the corporation that are underwriting their training and praise those corporations when they do interviews. they actually get formal media training of how to praise their corporation, whether it's verizon, dow chemical, british petroleum. so the idea that they are then not allowed to say something about the spectacle of which they are a part just seems like the most rank hypocracy in the world. athletes should not feel compelled to speak out if they don't feel it in their heart but they shouldn not feel compelled
to not speak out if that's what's on their mind. >> let's move on to dallas maverick's owner mark cuban. he made headlines by saying the nba's development leal gateway a better option for many players than college, especially those who are likely to go to college for one year. he said the ncaa rules are so hypocritical, there is absolutely no reason for a kid to go to college because he is not going to class and he is actually not even able to take advantage of all of the fun because the first semester he starts playing basketball. so, if the goal gateway just to graduate to the nba or to be an nba player, go to the d league. does he have a point? >> he absolutely has a point in every conceivable fashion. the first thing which he doesn't say explicitly is that if you go to the d league, you have a contract and you are get hing paid to play basketball not just underwriting your college coach's contract which gateway what you are doing if you are playing at the ncaa level. the second thing gateway if you are talk talking about the nba
is the issue of player development. if you are a 6' 8" sent,er which is short, if you are in the d league, they are not caring about wins and losses. they are going to figure out a way to teach you how to hit that 15-foot shot. if you are 6' 8" center for louisville, it's no the in rick patino's interest to run pick and pops for you so you can shoot 15 footers. he will have you under there rebounding en if it hurts your event draft prospects. what mark cubeap gateway pointing to, which is why it is making so many college coaches so upset gateway if we are trying to develop people who can play in the nba, who can not go broke 10 years later, let's get them in a program that teaches them the life skills to be an nba player, not the shacharade. >> cuban said it's a big lie that players are treated like student athletes and that the d league can put the individual,
where the ncca can't. isn't it time for a conversation about the education some of these players are getting in college? >> absolutely. >> or the lack of education they are getting. >> yeah. no. we need to have this discussion and not because of some of the recent scandals that have surfaced at the university of north carolina, for example, where players were just like moving right through classes, getting good grades, even players who had issues with basic literacy. the great moral fallacy in all of this, share -- something that larry brown of southern methodist university. he is kind of an itinerant coach, he said playing in the ncaa gateway, quote, the best possible training, the best minor league for preparing for the nba. i paraphrase slightly but that's what he said. now, what's so ridiculous about that statement from larry brown is that it leaves out the fact that less than 1% of ncaa college basketball players will even get drafted by the nba, let alone make an nba team.
so what do you really -- what are you really preparing them for if they are not getting the educational component? something mark cuban puts forward which i totally endorse except they are not going to do it because of monetary considerations is that basketball, a revenue-producing sport, should have the same model as baseball which is a non-revenue producing college support which is if you want to play after high school, go right ahead but if you go to college, it is a three-year commitment. if you can also talk to an agent throughout this process, there aren't any restrictions on that. you can enter the draft, withdraw your name. there is just so much more freedom for being a college baseball player, but then there is an emphasis on saying, okay, if you are at this school, you are going to actually be a college student. the idea that the ncaa doesn't have that for basketball isn't just because they didn't think about it. i am not saying anything revolutionary. but it's because basketball, particularly march madness, brings in 90% of the ncaa's annual operating budget.
>> an awful lot of money involved. dave zirin, great to have you on the show? >> my privilege. thank you. >> the show may be over. the conversation continues on our website, aljazeera.com considerthis. find us on twitter @aj consider this. have a great weekend. >> this is al jazeera. >> hello and welcome to the news decision hour. here in doha with your top stories. >> despair in china as relatives wait for news of a missing passenger plane. >> i am mayorian in london with the latest from europe including the crisis in crimea, an unmarked envoy heads to the regional capitol has warning shots stop international observers from entering.