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york city police officer in the death of eric garner. joining us from washington d.c. is the reverend jesse jackson, activist and founder and president of the rainbow push coalition. good to see you. there is, of course, an incredible amount of outrage over the grand jury's decision >> huge protests around the country calling for police reforms. reverend jesse jackson joins us. and contractors may face illness because of service in afghanistan. "meet the press" host jones -- joins us with a look at his new book on president obama. hello i'm antonio mora, those stories and more ahead on . >> americans upset that a new
york city police officer was not indicted in the death of eric ghana. >> this is how many u.s. waste. inhalation. this is our generation. >> a new chuck todd book. a stranger, barack obama in the white house. you'd think washington would change on its own. >> families made the final steps them. >> as long as we stand up saying we fight, at some point you have to make good. we begin with a large protest across the country, and the calls for police reform, following the grand jury decision not to charge a new york city police officer in the death of eric garner. joining us from washington d.c. is the reverend jesse jackson, activist and founder and
president of the rainbow push coalition. good to see you. there is, of course, an incredible amount of outrage over the grand jury's decision in the eric garner case. what do you hope will come from it, and the efforts i know you and others are having all over the country? >> well, it's a tremendous amount, the way the department of justice stopped the rein of terror against black men. it's shot for them one time in new york. the jury sets the killers free. it's rodney king, beaten in california. those that beat him are set free. it's that of michael ferguson in missouri being shot. there's a panel of terrorism putting a tremendous burden on the department of justice. >> has it gotten worse. i say that coming from someone who has personally seen african-americans mistreated by police.
if you look at the statistics, it seems that it's other than during the crack epidemic, we had 30 years where things have not changed much. cases. has it gotten worse? >> well, you have the visions, the visuals of social media. you saw eric garner begging for breath, checked to death. you saw rodney king beaten on social media. and the police walked free. i am sure that's a factor. we put so much focus on the police, they are gatekeepers. three time one employment. behind the gait is 12 times more arrests than whites. behind the gates, stupid loan debts. behind the police, we should put cameras on the banks of bankers, they are the ones that rob our communities. it's a whole other conversation.
>> on this one, what do you want to see done when it cams to policing around the country? >> well, the more - those that kill people who are innocent should face the penalty of law. number two, in the areas where there's the most crisis, the most unemployment, we need targeted jobs in health care and skilled trade training. those communities are in holes. they should be lifted up so there's an even playing field. it requires an analysis by the president, and a budget. the commission employed and analyses a budget, lifting people out the whole who are in field. >> what about possible unintended consequences. in dealing with police and changing the way policing is done. as you know, the crime rate in new york city is infinitely lower over the past couple of decades to a great extent
because - possibly because of aggressive policing, and some would argue the biggest beneficiaries would be people in minority communities. >> people need more policing and jobs. more action to health care. jobs and training. we don't need to be policed in the gettos, we need to be educated and inspired to do better. we do well in the analytic field, the best at it. the playing field is even. rules of public, goals and referees are fair. police. >> on the broader scale we have heard attorney-general eric holder, talking about how all people need to have confidence in the police. going back to when you were a civil rights activist in the '60s, did you expect to live
long enough to see a black attorney-general black president. are you satisfied, given that advancement, with the job done on race relations. >> the huge backlash against them and the rest of us - after all, these kind of high profile killings - there's domestic violence, interracial is one thing. messy violence is another. when police swear to uphold the law, shoot unarmed people and walk away, that's a bitter pill to swallow, many don't want to swallow the pill. we need the department of justice to operate, and give people promptness in the jury system. maybe there should be lights in the jury system, not just on press. i think that anybody who saw the garner video, and heard him on the ground with four or five police officers on top of him saying he can't breathe, it's hard, i would think, not to be outraged by this.
i don't think that congressman peter king of new york is an outrage himself, but he defended the grand jury decision, saying the outcome would have been the same if garner had been white because in this case garner had the health issues, and police would have gone after a white person that resisted arrest in the same way. >> he's being a hypothetical. the reacty is that you have a waive of black unarmed killed by white police. if you had the same wave of black police killing white there's a racial component here. it is consistent, clear. we deserve better. >> reverend jesse jackson, good to see you, thank you for sharing four thoughts. >> joining us here is former congress woman elizabeth, co-chair. government relations practice for the heric law firm. you are the perfect person to
talk about this. you dealt with the grand juries, and the new york city police. we had limited release of information for what the grand jury saw. do you think this process has played out fairly? >> well, of course it's very troubling and most americans, by the way are bothered by secrecy, which is a good thing. we are encouraged by and accustomed to transparency and openness. grand jury process, which is secret, is something that americans are not comfortable with. it's secret for a lot of reasons. it has always been secret historically. it was there, basically, to protect the public against the prosecutor. it was supposed to be a check against the prosecutor. people say the prosecutor can indict a ham sandwich. in new york state that is not true. the prosecutor is not allowed to make a recommendation to the jury. i don't know what the story is in missouri. the federal government can
recommend indictment. in new york state the prosecutor can't make a recommendation, he can cross-examine but not affect the outcome. >> in a case like this where you have video showing a man in distress, and a grand jury returning no indictment it makes people think... >> of course. >>..that there's an inherent bias in the process. >> of course, that's a problem with the grand jury system. it creates questions, prapz there should be a release of minutes. the da asked a judge to do that. you can't just release it, you have to get permission from the judge, and that is rarely granted. to give the public confidence in the system, which they are entitled to have, they should be made public. the public say we don't agree with it, but we didn't see someone put the thumb on the scale. we didn't ribbing it, but we didn't see that kind of thing happening. it's important. people have to have confidence in the system. there are other checks on the
system that have to come into play. in new york city, for example, until recently we had a civilian complaint review board that was not very effective to respond to public complaints or identify systematic problems, like the choke hold. >> when you were in l.a., you had a group that investigated police. you worked closely with police prosecutor. >> correct. >> the staten island prosecutor, i am sure, is the same. that's the question - whether the process can be fair if you have got people going after people that they work with all the time. >> right. well, i was in the civil rights movement in the early '60s. i saw the horrors of jim crow and saw what the police did in georgia and alabama. i didn't want that in brooklyn. when i was in brooklyn, blacks
could be removed from a jury because of the race. we fought all the way to supreme court. these were practices going on affecting the outcome. i understood there was a perception issue, when you had issues - here i am da, working with the police that solved a murder case, and i have to pros coot the police -- prosecute the police in an issue involving a use of force. who would believe the outcome. i created a special unit that never worked with the police, dealing with those issues. >> is that something we should have all the time? >> it's something we are thinking about. i had 5,000 police officers picketing me. i thought it was important to be fair, and perceived to be fair. that's one of the things that people are concerned about. that's a problem with secrecy. on. >> we talk about police picketing you. some have said that police have been thrown under the bus.
and the mayor's comments could be read as being antipolice. >> i want to say one thing about police commissioner blair and mayor bill de blasio. i think they handled this well. we are a city of millions. we didn't have a house burn down, the building. there were a few arrests. the people in new york city had the possibility of expressing outrage, concern, whatever their views were. that's an important thing that happened. if you could compare what happened in new york city. it was an example of having first amendment rights. >> what about the role of police, we have seen the broken window stopping and frisking, going after smaller creams, and how that has contributed to the lower crime. whether it's responsible for it or not. it's a matter for debate. are police in general doing a good job in the city.
>> in new york city i think a lot of things changed over time. a more diverse police force. that helped to generate republic respect for the police and public willingness to work for the police much diversification is important. bringing asian americans, diversifying and they are making strides. they are trying to do something about the review board. we need someone to oversee that and make sure these things happen. that's something that happens nationwide. we have a horrible case in cleveland, where a 12-year-old boy had a toy gun, it wasn't clearly a toy gun. the police officers came out. in that case some of the statements about the police officer, and his issues on the job are alarming. so should there not be more review to make sure that especially police officers might
be too aggressive are not going to be put in situations where death. >> there's no question being a police officer is a tough job, and i have enormous respect for people that put themselves in harm's way. doesn't mean they can't make bad judgments and training and concert training and support and help. i think if you look at ferguson. there was no diversity in the police officers and the government. it was easy for the city to write-off the minority population. we learnt the hard way in new york city. city. we have to reach out, we need community policing, a diverse police force. without the support and help you can't do a good job. who will report the crimes and work with police to help solve the crimes. if the public doesn't stop the police, we can't solve the crimes. it's a two way streak.
we made many strides, and have to make many more trades. we can't sit on our laurels and i believe the figure ought to review what is happening, and maybe we need a commission to take a look at what is it happening to policing around the country. there's a small ray of hope in south carolina. a white police officer was indicted for shooting a black unarmed man. it doesn't - what it shows is america is not just a 1 way street here, the wrong way. >> former teach for america is supposed to educate poor children. >> schools where kids need grade teaching the most. >> can unprepared teachers make a difference? >> why are we sending them teachers with 5 weeks of training? real reporting that brings you the world. >> this is a pretty dangerous trip. >> security in beirut is tight.
>> more reporters. >> they don't have the resources to take the fight to al shabaab. >> more bureaus, more stories. >> this is where the typhoon came ashore. giving you a real global perspective like no other can. >> al jazeera, nairobi. >> on the turkey-syria border. >> venezuela. >> beijing. >> kabul. >> hong kong. >> ukraine. >> the artic. real reporting from around the world. this is what we do. al jazeera america.
more than 52,000 american soldiers have been wounded in iraq and afghanistan. veterans have filed close a million disability claims with the veterans administration. now the supreme court is considering whether a case should proceed, involving claims that as many as 100,000 veterans and civilian contractors have suffered health problems from inhaling fumes from tonnes of military trash, burnt in the open pits on bases in iraq and afghanistan. sheila macvicar has more. >> everything didn't go to crash, it went to be burnt. it was every day black smoke came over us. >> reporter: this is how many u.s. military bases across iraq and afghanistan disposed of waste.
in massive open-air burn pits, which unleashed clouds of thick black and some veterans say toxic smoke. >> during the day time it was solid black. you could smell it. >> staff sergeant antony thornton spent two years as a prison camp guard in iraq. he was constantly exposed to poisonous fumes, he says, that lingered around his living erts. worked. >> the burn pit you'd see anything in it, anything from tyres to paints to medical waste. stuff. >> there he goes. >> and they would use j p8 jet fuel to set it on fire. >> reporter: specialist rodney
miese worked in the mechanic area. it had a big burn pit, 10 acres of smouldering trash. at the height of wars, more than 250,000 bases across iraq and afghanistan burnt their waste. large bases burnt up to 300 tonnes of garbage a year. >> there was always a yellow haze over the base. everybody that you talked to had some type of respiratory issue with it. it was operational 24/7. the toxics released batteries, tyres, human waste - it made them sick. >> all the burning was done wrong. and everybody nose that. >> reporter: more than two years an anthony came home from iraq. he was diagnosed with a rare and aggressive form of brain cancer, at 33. he underwent three surgeries. >> during his last surgery part of his brain was removed.
the left temperal lobe and part of the hippocampus, playing a role in short and long term memory and affected his speech. >> i cannot tell you my wife or my daughter's middle names. i don't remember everybody's name. >> as soon as it happened, he said it was the burn bit. >> thornton's wife says her military. >> hearing these people go, and they risk so much and forego so much for our country, that the country doesn't stand. >> thornton says he doesn't have a history of cancer in the family, and has a letter from his oncologist saying, in part:
lip the veterans administration awarded thornton 70% disability, but does not acknowledge links to burn pits and says his cancer may be linked to radiation from a previous job. >> we know people were sick. we are trying our best to determine where the burn pits are responsible. >> the top health official says there's no proven link between exposure to burn pits and long-term health damage. >> we looked at several thousand individuals, members, assigned to locations, versus location. we looked at the data and were unable to identify a definite difficult health risk asposhted with those at burn pits. >> leaving veterans like miese fighting for compensation they
believe they are owed. he can no longer work, he's been granted a 10% disability. he planned for a long military career. where he was stationed he lived pit. >> while i was there, it felt like you were trying to breath. i have narcotics. after leaving iraq it took doctors 7 years to diagnose them with bronning ill itis. he has to carry an oxygen tank with him, erp he goes. >> we see a population of patients with unexplained short possess of breath following service in iraq and afghanistan. >> this doctor is a paul monologist -- pull monologist. >> is this something you expect
to find for someone fit for employment. >> it's a diagnosis in an otherwise healthy individual. >> this is linked to some inhalation and exposure during service in the middle east. you can go through a list of potential exposures. dust storms, particulate matter exposure. burn pits. >> dr miller began to see returning soldiers with mysterious breathing problems. he was the first to do lung biopsies. he began linking the conditions to war time exposures. when he presented the findings, he said he was shut out by the dod. >> after that conference, the department of defense decided not to send any more patients. >> the department told dr miller they deal with the issues internally. we sent the soldiers to the
middle east physically fit. they had toxic inhalation, coming back with problems making them non-deployable and were not willing to compensate them. dod's said the evidence linking soldiers to damage from byrne there. >> it's highly plausible, probable that some individuals have health conditions acquired as a result of exposures in theatre. being able to identify which exporms and individuals is difficult because we don't have the individual exposure information helping us to establish that link. >> miese left the military. his doctors told him he was not fit to work as a file clerk. with his fiancee he moved to the mississippi coast.
the humid air helps with the future. as for the future... future. >> jamie and antony were married shortly after he came back from iraq. they have a 3-year-old daughter. >> i mean this, is not what i thought our life would be. you know, at 33, 34, 35. it affected us tremendously. a lot of people say this is our generations. thorntons say they want the military to acknowledge harm done to soldiers. >> my plan was to keep working, and get a good job working. she doesn't have to do anything and be a good man. but i've erased that now.
>> you're still a good man. >> it's hard to accept that. >> reporter: for thousands of returning veterans, this is their reality, a reality shaped by exposure to the burn pits, and someone, they say, needs to step up and take responsibility for more i'm joined from baltimore by susan burke, a lead attorney in a class action group, filing against a group contracted to get rid of rubbish from bases in iran and iraq. good to have you on the show. after vietnam there was agent orange, soldiers that suffered cancer from exposure to toxic herbicides. after the gulf war, soldiers suffered health problems,
possibly due to fumes. and now these reports and lawsuits. the defense defendants response is the same sass in prior cases. >> that's true. sadly the commander in chief president obama said it's not becoming the next agent orange. in truth, it has. there has been delay, study, no progress. >> your lawsuit has 250 plaintiffs. are they suffering terrible health problems we witnessed in the story we just played? >> yes. and, in fact, the size of the class is much brighter than that. we filed 250 claims. there are many others that signed on as well. what we see are respiratory problems. we have cancers. up to 12 deaths. how many potential victims do you think are out there?
>> it's difficult to get a hard number. we thing it's in the thousands based on the number of people deployed, and the proximity to the burn pits. >> what about the claim that air pollution, dust from sand storms, could have caused the problems reported? >> what you are seeing is a clear causal link between the burn pits and the injuries. this is science independent of us. there are reports that it is a causal factor. dr miller discovered a causal factor. that's a question for the scientist, and the consensus force be that exposure to the injury. >> how many doctors are involved
in looking into this? >> what we see anecdotally, we seeing more and more treating physicians are attributing it. a lot of this is commonsense. if you think about it in this case nation, we outlawed the burning of trash in the backyard. hazard. >> people washing the story probably noticed a red flag. that the military stopped sending dr vanderbilt people when he raised the issue. >> when you look at the wrongdoing, we need to look at the corporation at kbr, billions of dollars, and they were supposed to perform according to contacts. and is that required them to handle waste disposal in a manner that did not hurt the troops. the defense department, the
veterans gafrs have been harmed by this. they are haemorrhaging money because of injuries caused by this association. >> the military spent millions to install incinerators that afghan troops and u.s. soldiers refused to use. kbr says the military offered afl of the burn pits. if there's a culprit. how much is kbr, how much is the defense department. >> we are focussing on the pits that kbr operated. this is why we need to get to the district court. we are waiting to go back to the trial court level. and this fact-finding it done in the district court level. the information that we
collected is kpr ran the vast majority of the burn pits. the first invasion tended to be military. they are not the pits at issue, they were short-term, small, and not institutionalized. >> are you going an kbr because the military is immune from lawsuits in cases like these? >> no we are going after kbr because it was their wrongdoing that caused the problem. this is a company that got billions in taxpayers funds. person paid to provide a service. they didn't do that. they were supposed to take away the waste in a safe manner. thank you for joining us, we reached out to kbr, they >> a dirty deal. struck at the heart of government. >> egypt mismanaged its
gas industry. >> taking the country to the brink of economic ruin. >> it's obvious that egypt was being ripped off. it's basically saying to the israelis, "look if you want to screw us, here's a tool you can use to screw us". >> al jazeera exposes those who made a fortune betraying an entire nation. >> you don't feel that you owe an explanation to the egyptian people? >> no... no... >> al jazeera investigates. egypt's lost power. december 17th. 10:00 eastern. on aljazeera america.
president obama swept into the white house in 2008 with his message of hope and change. and the promise is end the political polarization plaguing washington. after six years in office, partisan politicking worsened, as has gridlock. partly because of the president's aloofness, and ub relenting -- unrelenting opposition. the paradoxies are laid out in detail in a book "the stranger", and i'm plead to be joined by
chuck todd, nbc news's political editor, and host of "meet the press." good to see you. >> thanks for having me on. >> it's a pleasure. you wrote the president was disgusted and disdainful of the process of politics and quoted an aid saying when it comes to retail aid and politics, it's like bill gates not liking computers. how can someone win two terms of process. >> he likes the campaigning. he doesn't like washington politics. much of the public agrees with him. it's why he was able to get excitement behind him in 2007 and 2008. because he made the promise that he is disgusted with the way washington conducts business. when he had a phrase called turn
the page. it was a phrase that was used to knock the clinton, and the democratic party and the bush and the republican party. like it's time to break out of the politics we've been in. he struggled to do it. part of the problem is there's two types of pol ticking to succeed in america. there's campaigning. something that the president enjoys. you see it. when he's campaigning, there's a bounce in his step. you here the stack atto in his voice. when he -- staccato in his voice. when he does the washington politics, he shifts downwards. >> you blame part of it on organs and on capitol hill, when he was a senator, he was seen as an outsider, too cool, aloof, unwilling to play the game, and you wrote that president obama is wired differently, believing
the rational should oversome the superficial. being rational - i have known him for a while - how does he not figure out that in work you have to be superficial and play the game. pooech if it seems irrational. >> you get to the latest asset. it's an idea that he is more normal than most politicians. many are wired differently. most of us don't need 50% plus one in a district, town, state or country to make ourselves feel relevant or important. there's a group of politicians, that is what drives them. president obama, in some ways is not wired that way that, is what made him appealing to so many people in '07 and "0le. >> there's the theatrics, the not understanding that others need that phone call to say
great job, thank you for being there. that donors want you know that you care that they showed up to your fundraiser, that c.e.o.s want to know you care about their opinion. he thinks some of these theatrics are silly. he admitted at the last interview, we talked about the criticism he got when he went golfing after giving a statement about the beheading of journalist james foley. and he said sometimes i don't get the theatrics right. sometimes it was interesting, but here we are six years into the presidency. >> if he misses those things, is not a good retail politician, could part of the problem be that his team is focused on the campaigning and not a week went by without a poll for exampling on voters
in swing states. some came in with the idea of protecting the political brand. every" does that, has the focus in the first term, and don't let anyone that worked for the previous presidents tell you differently, they can tell you they weren't focus the. but they were focused. i think the mandate that president obama had was to change washington. part of it it was the presidency he didn't expect. he was thrown a crisis with the great recession. >> one thick you say is you can't change washington if you are going be on the sidelines. >> that's right. >> that's an issue. that he didn't get involved in the game. >> i thought he thought his election would change, washington would change on its own by his mere presence, his mere election was okay, voters sent the message, they sent me
here, it's time to change the way you do business. hammer. >> i agree. >> would it have matter. with the tea party, senator mitch mcconnell saying they want president obama to be a one-term president. was it possible? >> we don't know, and we don't know in this respect. he came in not needing republicans to get an agenda passed in '09 and '10. that was a big deal. i wondered what would his presidency look like and what would his relation be if he had 50 to 51. he needed in the first year 10 or eight to 10 or 12 republicans to pass major legislation. there would be more urgency on both sides of the negotiating table. republicans knew they didn't have to be responsible because democrats controlled everything. the white house knew they didn't
need republican buy-in. it would be nice to get it. if they got it they'd tout it. they didn't need it to get stuff done. >> in hindsight i think there is certainly a wish by some democrats that he was forced to have the republicans early on, he would have built a reservoir of goodwill, i think, with a smaller chunk. you are right. the tea party, some of these folks he was never going to win over. you look at the way regan found conservative democrats to look at. are there fewer moderate republicans today than there president? >> absolutely. it was harder and trickier to do. but the outreach was not there. i'll give you an example of how little outreach there was in '09 and '10. election night republicans will win the house. the president decides he needs to call up john boehner and
congratulate him. nobody had his contact information or cell phone. pretty symbolic. in the context of getting his agenda past, the president has been pillaried is not too strong a word. talking about the pen eta and gates book and hillary clinton's book. and senator schumer last week criticized the president barack obama administration for focussing on the roll out of obama care. was that a mistake that that was what they focused on. >> let me take you to may of '09. that was an important decision. they had three paths to go down. they had spent $2 trillion bailing out the u.s. economy, with stimulus and the auto industry. it's time to turn their focus.
here they are, yet to implement something they had campaigned on. the choices were health care, financial reform or climate change. cap in trade, carbon tax. ron emanuel was arguing what chuck shooum acre was -- schumacher was arguing. he was arguing against reform. others said hey, you have political capital. if you go big, let's try to move on all three fronts and see what happened. >> one thing you woke that struck me, is he's neither the belittle. you say that he doesn't see himself as a leftist or a liberal. it seems incongruous to me.
he doesn't. he believes he's in the main stream. most do. he'd argue that the health care law was something republicans were in favour of in the '90s. he pushed through tax cuts na in the '90s, that version of the republican party support. that's where he sits and says hey, i'm not pushing an ultra liberal agenda. what is interesting, and i compare president obama and client. president obama is more to the left on the ideological spectrum, but they'll end up in the center if it's necessary. president obama is more of a trag mattist -- pragmatist. he would take half a loaf. some of his colleagues are nervous about that. but the republican party don't want to do that. >> look after the elections, he
came out with a degiant speech -- defiant speech. people expected him to talk about the shall acting. he was defiant. they put out the e.p.a. regulation, which received a lot of opposition from conservatives and manufacturers on the eve of thanksgiving, and tax cuts. something that congress agreed to. the white house is not on the same page. will anything improve? >> i don't think anything will improve. i can tell you the reason for the defines is the per cent feels as if he's catered to democrats for so long. look at the immigration decision. the president, many of his allies believes he wishes he had done it a year ago, six months it.
he delayed it, and he delay itted because democrats begged him to delay it. he regrets it. i feel he wasn't given a chance to defend his own record. i think that's why he was defiant. he doesn't feel - he feels as if his party abandoned him. and that's why he doesn't feel he - he didn't have a chance to defend his record. and democrats didn't defend his record, and he didn't get a chance too. that's where the defines comes in. doesn't sound like a good recipe to get things done. >> no, with your own party or the other side. >> i'll ask you with a book this tough on the president. are you concerned the white non-grata. >> i don't think so. look, i think it's a fair sober account. it's not an ideological book, left or right. it's what i saw through the press of his battles with
>> my name is elenor and for the last 25 years i was bernie madoff's secretary. >> an unimaginable story of betrayal. >> they lived this incredible life. it just never occurred to me that they were living on the dime of the clients. >> greed... >> bernie was stealing every nickel but he wasn't trading anything. >> ... and entitlement.
>> you took my grandchildren's future away from them. today's data dive honours a gaming milestone. wednesday, marks 20 years since the sony playstation debuted in japan. it revolutionized the industry. 50,000 units told, and it became the first gaming console to sell more than 100 million. video games are big business, averaging $90 billion in worldwide sales every year, tripling the worldwide ticket sales for the film industry. last year "call of duty ghosts" raked in a million dollars in its first day. "grand theft auto 5", reached a billion in three days. 19 films grossed more than a
billion. it took the box office record holder "avatar" 2.5 weeks to grosses that much. no wonder big name actors appear in video games. kevin spase stars in "call of duty", but the game doesn't seem to capture the oscar winner. >> can't they give kevin spacey spies with life. they have one of the greatest actor in the world and give him the eyes of a carp that's been in the refrigerator for three days. >> give them time conan o-brian, >> start with one issue education... gun control... the gap between rich and poor... job creation... climate change... tax policy... the economy... iran... healthcare... ad guests on all sides of the debate. >> this is a right we should all have... >> it's just the way it is... >> there's something seriously wrong... >> there's been acrimony... >> the conservative ideal... >> it's an urgent need...
is america losing credibility overseas - from syria to i.s.i.l., and ukraine, foreign policy has come under scrutiny even from former top officials in the obama administration. including our next guest. i sat with ann marie slaughter for an to al jazeera". she the head of the new america foundation, and head of a state department. i asked her about america's strategy to fight i.s.i.l. >> it's simply intention. i mean, you cannot kneel allow this organization steting up this rule, re draw the borders in the middle east. it is complete to tackle it as a military problem, and that it
was not bound up with the war, and the politics of iraq or turkey. we need the political strategy strategy. >> good luck. that region had problems with politics and borders. since the borders were established. madeline albright put it succinctly - the world is a mess. president obama faced harsh leadership, criticism for his behind. his enemies don't fear him, allies don't trust him. you wrote blaming obama for the world's ills is like blaming a caribbean island for a hurricane, but you wrote: thoughts? >> the first thing is i do think president obama is encountering more crisis at one time than anyone in recent memory.
he has middle eastern flames, russia with ukraine, china and japan and korea. he has a global penn demic as terrifying as anything we witnessed. that's leaving out a bunch of other crisis. to blame him because the world is a mess that is crazy. >> i think his failure to follow through on the use of force, when bashar al-assad used chemical weapons, we'd known for some time he was using the chemical weapons. president obama drew the red line. it made many wonder was the u.s. prepared to stand up for things that it says are absolutely critical. i think that introduced an element of uncertainty that is not helpful in relations with allies and adversaries, and
gives you a little more looseness than you like. i don't think you can say that vladimir putin would have invaded. those are counterfactuals. worked. >> when does the u.s. need to intervene. if there's a legitimate action, we can't be the world's policeman. you said that yourself before. do our vital interests need to be at play, and when is an interest a vital interest? >> so there's a clear vital interest where the defense of our homeland, the defense of our peep, the defense of our allies, all of those are things where, yes, we are prepared to use force. where i may differ from many traditional foreign policy people is i do think that if the gap between what we say we stand
for and what we do becomes too wide, we are irrev okayably weakened in the world. either we can stop saying we stand for universal lights. we stand with people who fight for their rites. as long as we say it and are standing up in saying we fight atrocities and sign the treaty, we will defend people, crimes against humanity. my point is at some point you have to make good on what you say. if you don't, you have lost your reputation, capital, your identity as a nights. i'm willing to say that rwanda is a case, syria, kosovo. and we could act not alone, but on behalf of the people, on behalf of the values we say we stand for. that is vital interest.
it's just that you don't see it compromised in the same way you see someone inviting a boarder or killing a citizens. you don't see it. it's there, it's insidious, and it damages the united states in the eyes of the world, and the eyes of the people in a way that really is terribly dangerous. >> you were the first woman to head the office of policy planning at the state department. you were the first woman dean of the woodrow wilson school. you have degrees from harvard, princeton, oxford. you have written a bunch of books. two years ago you wrote an article that became a media sensation, turning you into a media sensation, entitled why women still can't have it all. what can we do so men and women have the ability to have their careers and be involved parents. >> three things, one is flexibility.
when i'm the boss, i say if family comes first, work will not come second, it will come together. i let the people who work for me do what they need to do, whatever they need to do, to take care of their families. the second, we need to rethink the ark of careers. young people have life expectancy over 80. there's time to have a family and rise in your career, as long as you are not expected to do both. we have the idea that 40 and 50-year-olds, if you were not promoted, you were passed over. that's crazy. we are missing out on a tonne of talent needed. the last thing was a public infrastructure of care. we are one of three countries that don't have paid paternity leave, high quality day care or anything that we need if you believe that care is important. >> you can see my full interview with ann-marie slaughter on
"talk to al jazeera" on december 13th. the conversation continues on the website aljazeera.com/considerthis, and we are on facebook and twitter at aj >> we're following a funeral cortege procession through the outskirts of baltimore... kyndal staten was shot dead at his home in northeast baltimore. he was 27. today his family and friends are burying him.