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tv   Center for Pluralism on U.S.- Saudi Arabia Relations  CSPAN  August 17, 2018 2:01pm-3:51pm EDT

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those kinds of understandings about learning and how you create environments like community schools to provide those opportunities. >> i would also add school disciplines. in our coming report we talk about how exclusionary discipline is not compatible with the whole trial. >> we are going to leave the last few minutes to take you to capitol hill, where the center for pluralism is discussing u.s. relations with saudi arabia. we are hearing from the former editor of cheap -- editor-in-chief of arab news. >> it's ok, he had to practice. 10 years from now you will not , worship,ce of work
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playground, college, university, hospital. people ofot find different faiths or races, ethnicities, languages, and ,ultures working together living together, studying together, playing together, even marrying together. situation is bound to create conflicts. as a society we have a to prepareity ourselves to deal with those situations so we have less conflicts. work, when you go to a workplace, when people of --ferent races are working .eople battling with inside
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when we take this little battles joining work on together, a lot of things can be achieved and it's very motivational. pluralism, we have programs and , in religion, society, culture. let me talk about cuisine. pluralism and cuisine. people working together in an office, enjoying their work, six months paths at the end they decide they want to go and have lunch for -- have lunch together. table.t around the the food is served. these four people were enjoying joking, having fun on a daily
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basis. there is pork, there is chicken, there's beef. the vegetarian guy says to the vegetarian. i'm a cal is sacred to me. don't you care about me? jewish or a muslim guy can look up to the other guy. we don't eat pork, you are eating this pork here. it is offensive to us. all of a sudden these four guys are battling internally.
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once that happens and goes back to work, is this the kind of society we want to? and excepting the uniqueness of each one of us. let me go back to christmas day. the brother and sister get to get's. the brother gets the ipad, both were excited. i'm so happy for you. you got the iphone you are talking about.
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pluralism matched his -- pluralism adjective. people ordered the food. the food is in front of them. person -- you know cal is sacred to me. about stakes for the last three and four months. you are talking about pork chops for several months. i hope you enjoy them. do you see the difference here? it has turned into a joyous situation.
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this is what it takes when we take this conflict out of the equation. at that time cuisine will be short. there is one in pluralism and religion. no matter how you worship the creator, standing, leaning, bending, that's your way of acknowledging the great nation of the creator. what is it to me? respecting the otherness of others. this is what the center for pluralism does. we are used to cohesive societies were no american has to live in comprehension or
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others. of -- i knowic you.
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[inaudible] >> we will start at 2:15. >> again, watching live coverage from c-span. hosting a discussion on u.s. relations with saudi arabia.
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starting with the full discussion later here. it will start in five minutes and we will hear from the former editor of an chief -- editor in chief of arab news. should start at about 2:15. week, officials from the state and treasury department will testify. tuesday evening, president trump will be holding a rally in west virginia. you can join us live here for that on c-span.
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while we wait for this discussion to begin, we will hear from the former editor in chief of arab news about u.s. relations with saudi arabia. taking a look at some of today's washington journal. we were asking people about top in the of the week previous segment. what cost the most attention for you? >> brendan and the gang king --
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the yanking of his security clearance. if this was something horrific or unheard of. i would like to point out security clearance is not a right, it's a privilege. when you have someone like james brennan who takes to twitter and usetantly goes on msnbc to his security clearance to further his political agenda, i think the white house did the right thing. host: you also saw that he said this in part is an act by the president to silence him, what do you think about that argument? guest: i think it's thin. no one is trying to silence him, i don't understand how he is being silenced. if his twitter account shutdown perhaps he would have a case for censorship. he was being prevented from writing op-ed's in major
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newspapers. but this guy has been in the public for the last couple days more than you seen him in the last couple months. to say that his right to speak freely is being shuttered is disingenuous. host: we see the potential of more these of security clearances being revoked, do you think there are unintended consequences, particularly among those who need those in the security world? guest: i don't. the big reason why is that these are not rights to maintain your security clearance. there's only an elite few who are allowed to maintain them. when your regular folk depart from the government they have to turn in their security
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clearances, or they are only allowed to maintain them for a limited amount of time. i don't see consequences but i do see political repercussions that democrats will use this to their advantage. host: such as how? guest: such as how we are seeing now, we see the left carrying james brennan and his rhetoric as if he has a real case. it's ridiculous. the guys a lot to speak as freely as he wants, he's all over the media, so he's having more speech opportunities than he did when he had his security clearance. host: our guest is here to hear your questions and comments. if you want to ask your questions you can call in (202) 748-8001 for republicans, (202) 748-8000 for democrats, (202) 748-8002 for independents. i'm sure is, what did you think about the responses of those newspapers across the united states, several hundred taking a look at the statements that donald trump has said about the media.
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guest: the main message was that this white house, this president, president donald trump is pushing these media outlets into some sort of coward state of chilled speech. i have to say that's ridiculous. these are newspapers, they have free speech. there's an old adage that says you don't argue with someone in the media because they are always going to get the last word. it reeks of an elitist attitude, as if the media is justified in attacking the white house as it has done, and another the white house is supposed to stand back and do nothing. i'm not impressed with the response from the media.
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host: the white house's response, what do you think generally about the president that he calls the media the enemy of the people, particularly for industries like yours? >> -- >> we are going to talk about pluralism at the beginning and then my guest will talk about saudi-american relationships. i'm really pleased. i know there are many people --e but i want to recognize i have been a fan of hers for
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engaging in the demonstration. she stood up for every human being. that's the kind of thing. she is the elected representative for the maryland state of assembly. please let me know cool so we can announce -- know who, so we can announce. . also want to thank jack my friend here who is taking pictures, who has always been very encouraging. and a well-known figure in india, he has done lots of work in societies. limits -- let me share what the
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center for pluralism is all about. respectings simply the otherness of others. iu are who you are, i am who am. accepting each person's uniqueness is pluralism, broccoli. when god created -- for those of --who don't believe in god each one of us was created to be a very unique being. own thumb, our own i print, our own unique dna. the creator of evolution, big deaf big bang theory, he wanted to maintain that uniqueness. pluralism, we
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-- itished in about 2010 has been functioning since 1996. short story, i was an atheist for a long time of my life. in dallas texas there is a thanksgiving square. people say why don't you join the square? the next day kevin calls me back. we don't have a pigeonhole for you. we have one for muslim, hindu, or christian. if you choose one of those holes, we have you. this is not going to work.
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nobody should be excluded from that. researchid a lot of and i chose to become muslim in the late 90's. want to make sure that i chose to be a muslim because islam is the greater region but because it suited me. inclusive and respected every human being that wanted to create cohesive societies. since i've studied more, it's why i chose to become a muslim at the time. pluralism is respecting the togetherness of others. there are four areas we work on. pluralism in religion, pluralism is --litics, parallels
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pluralism in society and pluralism in business. let me give you an idea why pluralism is critical before we get to the program. pluralism at the workplace, how does it function? what does it mean? for individuals are working together in the office, they are happy, they are making jokes. six months down the road they decide they had a little time, why don't we go for lunch. they decide to go to lunch. , order to the restaurant the food, sit around the table. the food arrives. sudden the differences emerge in front of them. i'm going to exaggerate. -- and there'sf a pig head to represent pork.
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person all of a sudden gets upset. guys, you know i'm a vegetarian, callous sacred to me , you have this cow had sitting right in my face. don't you care about me? are you that insensitive? do i mean anything to you? there was tension. the muslim and the jewish guy, one of them look back to the other guy. you have this pig sitting on your plate, don't you have any respect for us? why did you order that food? everybody gets tense. they finished the food, nobody talks. the jovial mood is gone. they go back to work. let's add the same scenario with pluralism.
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imagine on christmas holiday or , get starny festival exchanged. the little brother and sister are excited. the brother gets an ipad, sister gets an iphone. sister says, you are talking got the ipad you were talking about for three months paid and the brother says i'm so glad you got the iphone. this attitude of enjoying the others, let's bring that back to the same dining table, same individual sitting there. all of a sudden the food arrives, the vegetarian person you are eatingys the beef there. callous sacred to me.
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aboutve been talking mistakes, i hope you enjoy the food. the jewish and the muslim person says i don't eat pork. but i hope you enjoy the pork chops. the mood is maintained, not happy again. it is respecting the otherness of others. cuisine. and go back to the workplace. one attitude without pluralism creates in tenseness. it's all under the radar. there is tension between four people. andtension is evaporated you enjoy working the company's more productively.
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it's important to teach pluralism. once we have accepted each other , the uniqueness -- the genetic uniqueness for those that don't believe in god. so likewise in religions, god.lism looking up to i'm going to lie down on the floor. what difference does it make to anybody else? we can go to the same workplace. goes into the bathroom. nobody asks what you did there. it's very private. a corner for a muslim to go pray his prayer.
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they want to express their gratitude. back, what difference does it make to anybody. pluralism is applicable in every area of life. it's not being taught anywhere. we are determined to have an institution where we can teach pluralism and politics and religion. sometimes they have an attitude towards the other person, it is rare for an example. some of the indian -- there is instant prejudice. lose, let'sing to learn to respect the otherness.
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that's about pluralism. you have the home page, you chose what we do. in each of the segments i mentioned we have four workshops. religion we have a workshop where we can teach 13 different religions from a point of view of 80's and him -- of atheism. me, theysays follow say submit to me. what does it mean to the person who is not familiar with god and religion. we take it down to such simplicity for people to understand the sense of religion.
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the more we learn about the other, the less complex we have. indian arabia, america else, thean, anyplace conflict is because we don't know each other. we learn about the bad things more than we learn good things. no matter what religion you go, --re are very few honest looking honestly -- religion is as beautiful as mine. somehow they have to put the other religions down. .eligion is a personal choice
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what difference is a make how you worship. with a that i conclude with pluralism is all about. that is the program. he has held a broad range of positions in saudi media for 30 years. firm andceo of the pr the anchor of television in saudi. he is highly regarded for his views.
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he recently got the highest civilian award for his work in creating better societies. ago and last leak he was in malaysia for journalism. issuegoing to address the -- thereaudi arabia are a lot of myths about saudi. he's also going to touch upon the relationship between india and pakistan. i was in saudi for 34 years. one of the best experiences is a wonderful experience.
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i had a 504, 1 of the french .ars, with fuel injection it doesn't function well in summer heat. the car stopped on the highway. i was burning. there were no trees to sit under. that was my last day in life -- i thought that was my last day in life. people tried to stop the car to help me out. they drive 122 140 miles. even when you attempt to stop, the car doesn't stop for a mile. i thought that was the last day. there was nothing more i could do. taking up the small truck with two goats in the back.
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i was looking at it, i said i don't have a choice. other wife to move towards them. i was surprised because i thought he wouldn't do that. there is a went home cake -- i don't know how to pronounce it right. he put a card outside. then indeed it was the month of ramadan. i say i need to come and join us. thes -- he gave me
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bubbly. i couldn't, but i had to. i was so gracious. i said i need to go back. i need to get my car. he said don't worry about it. he not only told the car, he had it fixed. i didn't know what to do. i said how much do i pay you? he said you don't have to pay me everything -- pay me anything. if you see anybody stranded on the roadside, if you help three people you have helped me. i have followed that line forever.
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it's an amazing way of spreading the good. doctor to share his story. we will set up the microphone there. to thecould face audience this way, you would be on the camera as well. thank you very much. to the audience this way, you would be >> good afternoon ladies and gentlemen. about the realism. i'm going to speak about bilateral-ism.
2:36 pm [indiscernible] of all the relationship between the airport and the united states, the focus is on saudi relations, and not much of other relationships, even though egypt is launcher -- is larger. arabia and the united states engagement begin on an economic basis. i will go quickly and meander fast. it's a story of economic cooperation.
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it was very much a standard by what happened. for the first time eisenhower stood up and there was this policy. later on in 1958 the crisis in gained -- these were all possessions. all perceptions. saudi had to be part of the arab world. whatever the action, knee-jerk reaction -- it had to be in the format of the arab league. again in the 80's we were both partners in the fight against the soviet union. also the break of the soviet union. be --of influence have to
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we saw to it that our foreign policies were aligned. nobody planned. i remember the student, i would get a lot of flack from arab students who would consider us lackeys of the united states. uncle sam protects you, all these things. this is very unfair. we were never part of the system . the saudi's were never part of that group. if we first track this relationship based on economy, we have a vision.
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the americans are playing a role in that in the american companies. some diversions and issues. century -- thee andi's are on record despite what we see in the media, and i also take things with a pinch of salt. we have totally allied ourselves. we will not to anything and despite what we see in the media, and i also take things with a pinch of salt. that goes against the interests of the palestinians because they will do with themselves. there are backroom meetings. there are things going on between washington and saudi arabia. i doubt we want to impose --
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even if we do that i think people are going to reject it. leader who would like to bypass, for whatever reasons, would not be able to do that. but as saudi arabia today? -- what is saudi arabia today? is it the saudi arabia of yesterday? for the last few years there has been a change. the socialist changes. people are happy to talk about women driving. more iswhat is needed more transparency and a media that comes out with the signs of progress. concerning other issues.
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for many of you it would look like something very small. see what happening in the last 30 years where the whole country was in the grip of an extremist ideology. -- it wasat ideology more a social economics -- social economic ideology. people would have to subscribe. i see young people coming in. i see more voices coming in. people aspiring. now i know even as a senior citizen i can breeze. young people have things opening up. it's not easy going.
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the mother is in pain and the baby is in pain. take time for new ideas to settle down. it's no opposition. it's a segment of the population that opposes or is not happy with happening inside of saudi arabia. it's a do or die situation. reporting in the media and even before that. and this 80 to 140 fluctuations is going to keep us. a deep soul-searching. it can become a commodity of the past. actions wee drastic
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will not be up to survive. this businessf and culture, things are happening. in themen are coming average age -- coming in. the average age of the your touch of the bureaucrat has dropped. there are at least 40% women coming. action that has happened in certain countries and put those groups on the side like what happened in south africa. -- afrikaners were placed were replaced by africans. i think some of the things that has happened in saudi arabia are really positive.
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the saudi people have to find out for themselves what they have done. coincides tohow it have a saudi arabia that is diversified so they can meet the century, verya competitive. and also the geopolitical situation changes not by the month but by the minute. i really believe the young .eople of saudi are capable they do need the guidance of others before them. i think that the saudi american relations have to be used in their own perspective.
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the interest of that. so many incidents happening in that region. the saudi's have to look at the larger interest. thank you. >> we open the floor for questions. we will start coming up. >> as mikey started talking about pluralism, others just focusing on the religion part at is, can you say if it allowed in saudi arabia today? work she and the minority has equal rights of the majority.
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still imprisoned for years after sentenced to 10 years. promoting a liberal ideology. state andg the religion to be separate. just been sister --ested when a crown press crown prince tries to put himself as a liberal, spending a lot of saudi money on pr firms to give that impression. he, "gave the women the right to drive," when women were fighting for that for decades. that he, the crowned prince 32 years old, will be the one to
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-- change thein pace of change. >> the government is not involved in building churches. article where it was one of the most read articles. all -- if practices , there are congregations going on. is most the problem
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people working in saudi arabia -- two or three or gone. when they are gone, who will maintain the church? why put a building out there that is not maintained? there are citizens who are christians and make sense. i think the saudi king was talking with the catholic church to do something about it. government should not do anything. there are congregations. >> [indiscernible] build a church, build a synagogue.
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quick summary things are perceived to be illegal. around buto movies in the last five or six months we have so many arctic chips -- summit archbishops -- so many archbishops. ideology. years of he spoke about sunni and shiite. this idea of banning women from driving, it was there before. i like to look at it as a positive step area rome was not built in a day. when the first person the conference visited was to meet the coptic church in egypt.
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church fromthe lebanon. you never had these things before. the beatles said give peace a chance. i think we should give the present situation a chance. and i truly believe optimism is the only solution out. people are clamoring for a more liberal society. helped before he came. we will be hearing new things soon.
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>> thank you very much. rome was not built in a day. let's talk about discrimination in textbooks. it is well known there does commit tory language -- there is discriminatory language in text books. rome was not built in a cave of the king has said they have been working on reviewing these and getting rid of the language for over 10 years. yet reports by the state department, other reliable ngos that said even now, the link which is still not gone. are going to talk about pluralism, maybe we can start in the schools and talk about the ideology underpinning this. the language has not gone anywhere. it has gotten worse.
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>> i agree with you. seen many ofally the things that have been purged from the textbooks. have 30 years of infiltration infiltrating the minds of people. can be done within a day. summary things have moved out. i was embarrassed to see things written. only other religions are attacking other people. there is a high committee for education. give a chance so in that spirit it is going around and remedying the errors in the forced action that happened before.
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the conference is only a year and a half. i'm not defending. i'm just telling you that in this 1.5 years many things have happened. so many things are not known to the public. i truly believe. this is a country. from 19 into the 70's had the ambassador. toatholic christian who used go to st. patrick's church every sunday. it was just the whole thing that changed. ages where you have areas of oppression.
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a catholic ambassador suddenly from 1918. things are now changing back again. >> in russia, china whatever country it is, if you see the news about america, what is happening in america, is this the america we want? likewise in saudi, the public wants to have something else. not representing the will of the people in the monarchy. the changes are coming but not at the pace that we want. we need to fix our house too.
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click's check pagano, coo of a major television network -- >> jack pagano. seal of the major television network. -- coo of a major television network in japan. >> i think this is overkill to saudi arabia. trump came up with some kind of formula. key informants from saudi arabia -- they have been slow in some areas, fast in some areas. it was president trump who came in and suddenly things started to move. both the relationship and the people we need to be. or receiving in the background that we had to move in and play a bigger road.
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he has said the mistakes of the past have been remedied. you had the soviet union for 18 years. dark clouds looming over the horizon. -- we have some of the misperceptions heard about us. >> i'm with code pink. the saudi'sy after cold-blooded lee murdered those murdern -- cold-blooded of those children on the school bus, i talked with someone who .ad just come back from riyadh it was his conclusion that the
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saudi government was basically a few -- saying f these investigations are for us. why though many were saying investigating when saudi arabia admits to bombing this school bus? must've seen the video images and it made me sick to my stomach. wondering with all the talk of purchasing weapons and the u.s. logistics and the u.s. offering to few put -- to fuel planes. causing one of the greatest human catastrophes in the world right now? cholera? that has never seen -- never been seen before. famine. from a poor country. is it possible because yemen was
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heading toward a democracy and saudi did not want to see a democracy on the peninsula? raisedhat last point you i'm talking an academic or an .nalyst embroiled in this tribal warfare for years. and took over many areas. it was before. there was the selection thing going on. back down to, to have dialogue. other chairs are empty. if youg about arms, don't have arms the market you
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can't buy them. arms, if it sell don't get a chance to buy a rifle i will not buy a rifle. i'm not justifying the war in yemen. it is sad these things are happening. a human life is important. there are elections. and going through a process where you will see the elected members. i think there is societal progress in saudi arabia. there are events happening totally out of our control. the greed and total
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lack of any empathy for human haveand other issues that created this kind of situation in yemen. i don't claim to be an expert. me, the intertribal rivalry that is going on is part of the problem. have not gotten involved you would not have this level of destruction. the best district -- majority of the citizens killed and destruction is coming from the saudi bombing and it was your so-called liberal crown prince that got the saudi's involved. >> the collision that they made -- polish and, i am not absolving anyone of blame. aboutly -- only talk [indiscernible] other areas around the globe.
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two wrongs do not make a right the coalition consists of the uae and other countries as you said. fueling the flames come from britain and the u.s. bring a point at one country or one action. i was -- it was eliminating to listen to you, sir. india, andork on u.s. policies. i have worked in india for a very long time to my do research on indian issues. democracy andge it has always been compared with the u.s. as the oldest and one of the largest democracies in the world.
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one of the trans of the ultimate is where your -- where is your ultimate decision-making, who makes those decisions? so it will be in no less terms, it has huge resources and a large vast landmark. fewer people but it has substantially well-known, weld -- well recognized source of power. to understandng is in the decision-making process, what is the role of institutions, what is the role democracy, there are three basic wings, the have anure, and you administration which is
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independent of the legislature, and then you have a judiciary. the three most important parts of decision-making. age, the the new technology and media has become a fourth pillar of the decision-making models. to bring transparency and decision-making. can you foresee because i know unwinding next time, not easy to [indiscernible] away the decision-makers. theou see a scope for democratic institutions to take root. that is number one. the second thing is what is the role of society, what is the role of people to people? do you as a saudi citizen, as an you --dent person, can
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can your voice be heard? you are the media so i would like to know a little bit more about what kind of influence media can bring. the last point is i am a bit surprised that in the last seven it brought many changes and [indiscernible] saudi arabia was insulated to happenings which happened in other parts of the middle east. >> starting from the and saudi arabia is insulated not because of the revenue although that plays a key role because of the level of policy, the level of hardship was much less area the economic policy was good, oil prices had, -- had on out.
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new -- at thehe saw the powers that be listening up key issues. andcracy was unfettered people allowed to do things. , you see the final and it is about economics. here there was [indiscernible] and started making more and more for people to talk and discuss the issues. peopleing as you said, think that it is an absolute monarchy, that the king can do anything.
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there are the liberals and the majority [indiscernible] i do not like to call them religious people. they are extremists. now the government has come out and remember frankenstein was the doctor, not the monster. he re-created the -- that. we thought this was the way and if you are five steps ahead why does this happen and it is not being simplistic. it created these people who were has to go and fight so they went down there, there was no such thing as a jihadi in their world which was a secular world. i will talk about saudi arabia, forget the other side. notstians were ambassadors, one, they were many. that is what happened.
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going back to what you said about the judiciary, there is a counsel, i notice it. there are a few things -- and certain occasions the government stepped in. and thenti-women government stepped in and said truly believe, i have the option. we just cannot moan and complain. that straight, there are many things that need to be done. i agree with you. wand,n't have a magic anywhere around the world you do not have that.
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10 years as the gentleman said, it was then, we knew why people spoke about these things. but now people are speaking against it openly voicing the plans. not only the people, governments have to [indiscernible] and the people's will. that is why i am telling you frankly and with all the am optimistic about things happening. it may not happen at the pace that is happening here. there are many things that need to be [indiscernible] in many parts of the world that i believe that we are setting a course. you have to go 100 miles and then turn around. that is how i describe it today. there is young people coming in, there is the thing of tolerance you spoke about.
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his spoke about building up things, there have been so many congregations inside, people are coming in and who would have thought the archbishops and popes of the eastern church would comment visit saudi arabia, who would have thought of interfaith dialogues happening in saudi arabia, where the saudi government has spent the last month of money having a big organization. --re rabbis, priests, a mom imams sit together and i have met rabbis from israel and other people coming. this is a start. let's have the chance to consolidate some of these positive aspects emerging.
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>> i believe he is the chief rabbi of israel, he was part of the interfaith dialogue and the iudi king assigned the rabbi, believe a priest to form the interfaith dialogue. it started in dallas, texas. the education minister came to dallas, called me up and he said i want to have an interfaith dialogue with you and christians. he said very eloquently, i only understand christianity and judaism, i do not know about other religions. why don't we do this first and we will take the next step. later, there is an
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interfaith dialogue in spain and that is continuing. it is a big progress. also you want to talk about you secular saudi arabia. can you talk about that? it is within the perimeter of the new saudi arabia where people are focusing more on people rather than background in faith. plug peoplerying to with so-called religious ideologies. now they are talking about the new ideas and new faiths and new things. new things are coming up, you have music coming in, art, sculpture from all over the world. from greece and here and there. you mentioned david rosen who have met so many times and this was king abdullah's initiative. we're not talking about money but the one in madrid.
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i think this is a good start. the media covers the philosophies, and every projects and the saudi government, this should come in the forefront. >> hello. [indiscernible] i have a couple of questions. -- restrictions on women in saudi arabia. would you think it is a tradition of religion that is holding back women and the other question is what is your strategy to bring in all faiths together and especially
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[indiscernible] >> strategy i leave sam. are,usly speaking, there we have spoken about that, this institute in vienna, there will be another meeting in riyadh and these things are being done but not reported. that never came in any newspaper in europe when we met area and why is that? as anti-others? met,picture, four times he it has never happened. as far as restrictions, talk about restrictions on women. everybody says there are restrictions on women. driving?
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that i think is wrong. you love to hit under the belt. i have a strong solar plexus so does not affect me. i have been a great supporter of women with -- as a father of who graduated from universities with masters degrees. i asked if they had any restrictions, previously in their previous generations, yes. there is technology where a woman can go and get married. u.s.can travel to the you can ask her, did you travel, did you get permission from your husband to travel? >> if you had a scholarship you would have had to have a male come with you. that is the way it used to be. >> it boils down to culture. -- again, amen who
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thing of the past. i am telling you, i just came five days ago from there. is -- the niqab has nothing to do with religion. covered saudi women are ? there are cultural perceptions in saudi arabia that are perceived as religion. there are areas in saudi arabia, yes, there are certain dictates about the way of life but by and large, in the last two years, ok, to quote the crown prince, abiyah does, the
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not have to be black or you do not have to it. i ask women in india why do you wear it and he said my husband works in the golf and i have to wear it and i said you do not have to. the mixture between religion and culture and ancient customs is causing this misleading thing. agree to the issue of culture but how do you explain that just the last couple of weeks alone, some of the most important women's activist that has been fighting for the right to drive and fighting against the guardianship system which they say is a reality, why have they been put in prison? and when i talk specifically, i want you to answer why the crown prince had a reaction that is so extraordinarily over the top when in a tweet, the canadians said we are concerned about the women's activists and think they should not be imprisoned and the
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crown prince reacted by recalling the ambassador, by cutting off trade, by saying that canadians, saudi students in canada would have to leave, by saying that people getting treatment in hospitals in saudi arabia would have to leave, by canceling flights to canada. this is insanity. so i want to know if women are so free, why are they in prison and why is the government reacting in such a strong way to andeet about human rights why isn't the u.s. government and how the other western democracies standing up and saying canada is right and those women should be freed? [applause] question,wered your none of the people from the
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western countries have said. this is my figuring out, this is an ambassador who did it from the capital. it was first treated by the foreign ministry in ottawa. foreignweeted by the ministry in ottawa. this is my conjecture, the audacity of this man being in the city and being an ambassador my rating, ihis is am not justifying, i am trying to rationalize the issue. you have an ambassador -- you can look at it in different ways. people are asking, i have said two wrongs do not make a right but why are the tweeting about human rights abuses with abuses happening in gaza or palestine, no one has tweeted that in canada or somewhere. i am telling you with the people feel, their views. nobody is justifying. i am not batting freddie women -- adding for anyone.
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the solution is that maybe because it happened because the ambassador was sitting in the capital city of the country and he said this when it could have been done to other diplomatic channels as is being done regarding the detention of several people. >> [indiscernible] still running for u.s. senate. about talking [indiscernible] except he is very good -- and the idea is very good areas this is very simple. we have to be more complicated in a sense.
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[indiscernible] what we have to do is help those people who need help. do anything that is not good to other people. very good philosophies, you have to be kind enough to help other people and you have to follow your values. we are talking about democracy human rights,, you think america has human rights? why do you send the incarceration there? most of them are innocent. why did you have to send to a jail is someone behind you who tried to ride officials and maybe saudi arabia, the prince [indiscernible] toa charity foundation
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certain candidates? what we want to do is do can dong, if the prince those million dollars, improve the process of election, that would be good. my question, can we do something , improvee democracy human rights rather than [indiscernible] [indiscernible] is no human rights at all. america has free voting. that is all rhetoric. so wet do something right will not be every day struggling. to see someone sent to jail, families are divided. jobs, butwo or three
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somebody else use the government printing money and enriching themselves. me clarify a few things. something -- this is something we are working on. i go on sean hannity's show, it doesn't mean that i have to be like him. i work with extremists, i work with the girls. meposition does not stain with being on hannity. pluralism is a work in process. ort because i am supporting being with someone does that mean i am with them. here saudi arabia is making a big effort in the last year and a half to two years. i am willing to acknowledge that and give a big hand for that.
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it is not the change that we want. right here in the u.s., the isaration of children that going on, it is not the will of the american people, still this is happening. something is happening in saudi arabia. it is not necessarily the will of the people, the will of the government. we need to work through all these issues, it is not just saudi. in the u.s., a democracy, we are going against the will of the people. we need to change about that. i wanted to share that. back to you. there are issues, i agree. the only way one could get ahead through ashes through dialogue and try to understand each other. we cannot solve these people am a people get aghast when kids are killed in school but dry have to blame america, i do not because these are individual acts. i am all for dialogues between
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religions and people but it is not going to happen overnight. the purging of the books as our friend said, it does not happen, you have to have a high-powered committee sifting through page by page. so you did not know which was the correct one and which one was the fake one. it is going to take time but all there is a start in saudi arabia. we just need some understanding. i do not want someone to condone what is happening, i do not want anyone to give excuses but all i want is to see to it that the things that are happening to rectify the massive errors of the past are in saudi arabia, ae arab world should be even a majorriod, there is star that has happened.
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>> i am from georgetown university and my question is
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more geared toward the u.s.-saudi relations and as a student, i am paying something outrageous like 7% student blows -- loans here in the u.s. and in saudi arabia, a lot of the students have the opportunity to study abroad and perhaps study in the u.s. on scholarships and such. how do you think the u.s. and saudi can learn from each other in terms of education and that matter? >> in terms of education, the exchange of students, there are several delegations that are coming in from work colleges, could it colleges, they come to solder it -- saudi arabia. also [indiscernible] which was a problem of allowing entry. in any month you have 10 to 12 to 15 to 20 journalists from all major networks and all newspapers and this is what is going to happen. i believe people trusting and understanding would go much more than having people from the state department are people coming from government to give -- to visit government. >> i am one of the embers of the interfaith coalition in maryland. the question i have, i understand change is not easy. i have been to saudi arabia a decade ago miami sure there are changes. i agree with you. muslim we american can do, because if you stay in a closed room and keep on talking,
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no one will hear you. there is a word called to it and publicize. you're not going to bring an average person and talk to them, it is not going to happen. you can have all those meetings, i understand you're talking about shaking hands with everybody. i have about 15 year relationship with baltimore and a goodcil relationship with my local churches, being a muslim, and eight devoted muslim, i have a very good relationship with his people. the only reason it happens is because i came out and i met this people so now they feel so comfortable that they invite me to their events. if we stay in closed doors we can all talk but we need to walk. will happen if you put the people of an average person who is involved in the can understand the hurdles
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because sitting behind the desk, believe me, you can do nothing but push a pencil. that is my question, what we can do as americans and american muslims to help you to promote saudiand open up the arabia for the people. islamic.ijab is not toquestion is what we can do bring some kind of openness to saudi arabian society? >> it would be difficult to get into that for someone else. they are doing it themselves. saudi's are doing it and doing it themselves by opening up society, by coming at the right time, the government has said before the inclusions that that's conclusions the arrived teachers inlamic
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the past. speaks that india where they killed and hank people because they eat beef. you do not find in saudi arabia people from other faiths being torched. s i can assured you it was [indiscernible] whatever it is they have not attacked people of other faiths that is happening elsewhere. assumeow, how can you that one is an atheist? i'm trying to figure out how do you know what i am, whether i am a [indiscernible] or somebody.
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that is beside the point. i am telling you things are moving. be movinghey may not as fast and correct as one wants them. i am not adding for anyone. what we would like to see that some of the chances be given, you talked about shiites, the head of aramco never heard [indiscernible] is from the shiite community. the head of [inaudible] theappointed recently by crown prince. this is a start, i agree with you, the hard-core ideal and that is alsologues, what did not belong in that frame. we were also victims of these
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people. we were the forefront. when you said they were in the back ground, more people going into the council are shiite and this man, the crown prince has realized this that you have to a pluralistic society. you cannot exist and you cannot hold on if you do not let different people -- people of different faiths and cultures. this regimentation of the mind of the soul that existed is not something of the past. >> is it possible to publish it there? [indiscernible] >> it is there on tape, it is being broadcast live as i speak to you.
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you do not want to believe it, i was believe sarcasm is the lowest form of it and i am sure you are not sarcastic. it is live. >> not on a saudi station. >> saudi's do not have stations in english. i watch 500 tv channels sitting in my bedroom. you can go anywhere and watch anything. there an event like this in saudi arabia? >> it is being reported by certain people. >> an event like this? >> yes. >> we should believe a little bit. be --o not want you to and want you to put all these
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timeframe of the the last two and a half years. i am not concerned about what happened in 1945 or what happened in the first world war. when saudi arabia sent hundreds of tanks into bahrain and shutdown a peaceful nonviolent protest. within their own country. >> that was seven years before the crown prince. technically i agree. >> you are under the impression of the khalifa family. >> there was at the behest of the ruling group down there. but seven years ago. he was not kidnapped, he arrived in saudi arabia, he still has his company going on and he comes and goes. i would like to, for you to
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understand, not to believe me, i would like to speak about the last two years that are happening. there are many things, agree with you that were wrong. many things that were not correct. >> arrest of women activists all happened in the last two weeks. ifthese are good questions, there is someone with a question different, we have in addressing the same question in so many ways. other questions be answered. is there other questions? you have already asked before. , not. we want to make sure we address as much as we can. as much as we know.
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>> i am with americans for democracy in bahrain, i have a twofold question. idea, my question is -- for there room for a calling out a bad idea like imprisoning women for wanting to drive? or are you going to say that is their culture or something like that? do you think it is still ok for countries like canada to ask questions and say they are concerned about human by going to go through the motions, there is optimism and change, let not -- let's not ask questions. are you using small changes to cover for violations that are
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continuing or issues? that is my question. thank you. >> question is a basic human can take awayne anything. free will, free speech is a god-given human right. share a story. when god created adam, who also believe in that story, god gave choice to adam, if you eat this fruit, there are consequences. if you do not, you get to stay here. in the heavens. so what does adam do? he was, he chooses to eat the fruit. when he eats the fruit the system starts working and he has to go to the bathroom. god did not tell him that there is no bathroom in paradise. this man is confused what to do.
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and god says, we had a deal with you, if you eat the fruit you will be kicked out and that is what we are going to do. you will be kicked out of the heaven, you can go do that on the earth, whatever you want to do. the angels argue with god, this is not fair. you could have slapped him, stopped him from eating the fruit, poor guy, he is suffering because you did not care to stop him. gun looks back, i am the god, i didn't i? choice, if i gave him a choice he select the choice that worked for him. i should as a god honor that choice. he tells the angels from here on every tragedy of adam and eve will be embedded with the dna of free will. everyone has free will.
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free will is important, questioning is important. without rationing, nothing will progress in the world. it is the liberalism and progressivism with questioning that has brought us this far. if you are conservative you would have still lived in the caves. thank you. to >> i will and up by saying when things, when people ask questions i said i speak my mind. the thing i want to say is one rule applies, you cannot be selective in human rights abuses in one place while overlooking worse things happening in other place. i am not taking offense but i wish all these people would look at each country they are talking about and say that and we will all agree. if human rights abuses are happening everywhere, no one is justifying it in any country but i think you have to flip the pages and see and start tweeting
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about other countries and come up with it down the line. thank you. to wind up, keep the questions sharp and precise and you will get a precise answer. click saudi arabia to me mohammed indian muslim, it appears that 1.5 alien muslims around of all denominations. what happens in saudi arabia? it is going to influence the whole muslim community all of the world. so the question is related to that, the policies of saudi about 1.5l influence billion muslims. of can there be a
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debate or discussion as to how and the changes that are taking place, it appears the changes are in bits and pieces, you allow women to drive. there are many other reforms which i needed within the muslim community all over the globe. as anpossible for you thertant communicator to saudi's, muslims and non-muslims around the world, is it possible to conceive a debate platform, maybe it can be located in the u.s. here in washington, d.c., or it could be located elsewhere. but a debating platform where people who are sitting here and many other people who are not
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present here but who would like to be on that meeting platform and generate academic literature so the book writers like the one who is sitting there can benefit from it? >> i am not here so i do not know but i am sure there are organizations, we just spoke about interfaith organizations across the globe apart from that, there are so many other organizations, they are in a and just to let you know we do not influence the muslim world. if you go to malaysia there are different types of islamic there are.hen each community should look to its own and see what the needs, what the parameters they are
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it acts differently than when you are in singapore or china. >> we can collect -- connect dialog aced on the need. there was a need for many people who wanted to understand the relationship between the u.s. and saudi when we set this up. is there any western you have about any other dialog, you can let us know, we can organize that dialogue. only want to do is have a dialogue. dialogue rings to the for the different -- differences and the understand, not to convert or change each other. in. next question. >> part of increasing pluralism independent, civil
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society. organizations who can go around and hold conferences and engage people, grassroots, and saudi arabia does not have an independent civil society. it does not exist. so how do you engage in foster dialogue when there is no independent civil i -- civilized society? when you have no independent interlocutor, how can you begin with such a dialogue? >> [inaudible] >> i am one of many am a there are many of us who are working day and night for this. there are many and society if you go, your work in in the state department, i you can
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andle and get our names other associations. places.e other exist youety does not say, i think that is very untrue. >> to say confidently that it does not exist means you have not done enough research. symbian email and i will share with you. , humansace where people lived there is a civil society. there is always one individual who wants to bring peace, who wants to talk about it. in the u.s., we have many people who speak but their voices are not heard. it is the same with all countries. what we need to do is appreciate is -- hitive changes
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places is doing, it is not satisfactory for you or me but it is a major step and let them continue with that. >> this is important in terms of the evolution and i hope you're right that society is moving toward a better place. the issue is civil society, a lot of groups that tried to get the stamp of approval to have an official organization have had it for a while and taken away from them and one of the best hoops is one of lawyers who have been trying to get a constitution and they say saudi arabia is one of the only absolute monarchies left in the world and if it is going to evolve in a nonviolent way, it has to evolve where there is a constitution and then people are allowed the freedom of association and they are allowed to have elections at the national level. are you hearing and saudi arabia
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not just reforms that are from the top down but reforms to have a constitution and a real vibrant civil society and where people could have national elections? have noticed is religious council, there were no women in the council until two years ago. now there are women, there are -- there has to be a start somewhere. >> [inaudible] >> it is not an absolute monarchy in the sense that anything can be done immediately. there is going to be a roadmap for so many new reforms that are coming up, some of them i am not in a position to state but these things are going on. that is why you see i have a
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happy face, that is why i am here talking about this and telling you what all i am hearing. tomorrow arabia of will be different from the saudi arabia five years ago. >> any other questions? we can conclude. >> [inaudible] >> thank you very much, i appreciate each one of you and thanks, c-span, and thanks our congressman for sponsoring this securing thanks for this room. we had last week the end of july, we had a scriptural reading, we had a rabbi, a theor, and an imam and question was do this captures --
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doiptures and conflict or they bring harmony? it was a very difficult question for the rabbi to answer, muslims god [indiscernible] timmy got is not a little guy, god cannot you with -- make a deal with muslims behind the back of jews. havewe have done is we created our own things that has needed so the next month we have hinduism and islam. about each other and in november we will have ten [indiscernible] when weultimate goal myths, wheny are
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we are human, conflict fades and pluralism simply means we are respecting the otherness of others and accepting the god-given uniqueness for those who believe in god [indiscernible] respect that uniqueness, you made it. thank you very much and thanks again to c-span. [applause] [indistinct conversations]
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[captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2018] [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit] [indistinct conversations]
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>> our live coverage includes tuesday at 10:00 a.m. eastern, officials from the state and treasury department testify before the senate foreign relations committee about u.s.-russia relations live on c-span. tuesday evening, president trump has a rally in west virginia scheduled for 7:00 p.m. eastern and we will have that live. >> president trump spoke to the press on the white house south lawn before leaving for southampton, new york. he addressed the decision to revoke the security clearance of former cia director john brennan . the president also announced his plan to revoke the security clearance of justice department official bruce orr.


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