tv Democracy Now PBS June 8, 2015 12:00pm-1:01pm PDT
06/08/15 06/08/15 [captioning made possible by democracy now!] amy: from pacifica, this is democracy now! >> we are going to discuss our shared future, global economy that crates jobs and opportunities maintaining strong and prosperous european union forging new trade partnerships across the atlantic, standing up to russian aggression in ukraine, combating threats from violent extremism to climate change. amy: as leaders of the seven wealthy democracies known as the group of seven hold talks in a secluded castle in germany thousands of protesters are met by 20,000 police. this is the largest police
operation in bavarian history. then this tragic news. kalief browder has committed suicide. he is the young new york student who spent three years in reconciling jailed without being convicted of a crime. we will speak with new yorker reporter jennifer gonnerman who recounted history in her article "before the law: a boy was , accused of taking a backpack. the courts took the next three years of his life." >> the psychological damage, the emotional damage a wrote about last fall continues to this day continues after the story comes out of course and goes on and on. it is unclear at this point what it is going to mean down the road. amico sadly, it is clear. kalief browder has taken his own life. he was 22 years old. all that and more, coming up. welcome to democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman.
the united nations say 20 million people, 78% of the population, need urgent humanitarian aid in yemen. that's an increase of 4 million from just three months ago. aid agencies have urged saudi arabia to ease a naval blockade depriving yemen of basic goods. saudi arabia has also failed to hand over any of the $274 million it pledged to the u.n. emergency humanitarian fund for yemen in april. the news comes amid continued fighting between houthi rebels and rival forces backed by the saudi-led coalition. on sunday, dozens of houthi-allied soldiers were killed in an airstrike in the capital saana. saudi arabia also shot down a scud missile fired by houthi forces across the border from yemen. this comes days after a saudi airstrike in saada province killed at least 50 people, most of them civilians. president obama is joining other
world leaders in germany today as the g7 summit comes to a close. heads of state are holding talks in a secluded resort inside a 100-year-old castle. outside the summit, protesters have been met by a massive show of police force, with as many as 20,000 officers deployed. thousands of demonstrators took to the streets saturday in the nearby town of garmisch. on sunday, leaders and reporters had to be shuttled to the g7 talks by helicopter after protesters blocked a main road. issues under discussion include climate change, austerity, greece's fiscal crisis, the transpacific partnership trade deal, russia and ukraine and , what president obama called "russian aggression" in ukraine. we'll have more on the g7 summit after headlines. turkey's ruling party has lost its parliamentary majority in a major defeat for president recep tayyip erdogan. the justice and development party, or akp, still won the most seats, but lost legislative control for the first time in 13 years. the result will thwart erdogan's
bid to increase his presidential powers. the pro-kurdish hdp party won seats for the first time after appealing to erdogan's leftist and secular opponents. pakistan has acknowledged it has cleared eight of the ten people convicted for the attempted murder of pakistani education activist malala yousafzai. in 2012, yousafzai was shot in the head by a taliban gunman who boarded her school bus. she survived serious wounds and now continues to campaign around the world, winning the nobel peace prize last year. in april, pakistan said 10 men had been sentenced to life imprisonment for the attack. but pakistan now says eight of them were actually acquitted due to a lack of evidence. protests broke out in parts of mexico on sunday as the country held midterm elections. both striking teachers and relatives of 43 students missing since last year burned ballots and accept antigovernment unrest. the pri party of mexican president enrique pena nieto retained its congressional
majority though with a smaller number of seats. thousands of people have rallied in honduras calling for the resignation of president juan orlando hernandez over a corruption scandal. the protesters turned out after hernandez admitted his election campaign received donations from companies linked to social security embezzlement. click square protesting against impunityfor criminalization. this country is collapsing, this government cannot to anything. it must be removed. amy: president hernandez has denied any personal involvement in the payments. saudi arabia's top court has upheld the controversial verdict against activist raif badawi. badawi was arrested in 2012 after setting up a website for political and social debate. he was sentenced in january to 1000 lashes and ten years in prison. two people have come forward with specific allegations of child molestation against former house speaker dennis hastert.
hastert was indicted last month on federal charges of lying to the fbi and illegally paying $3.5 million to hide alleged "misconduct." fbi sources say hastert was making payments to a former student to conceal sexual abuse that occurred during hasrt's previous career as a high school teacher and coach in illinois. now the sister and a classmate of another former student, stephen reinboldt, have identified him as at least the second potential victim of hastert's abuse. the unidentified friend spoke to nbc news. >> it is hard to talk about his relationship with denny hastert. openly and sexual. we were flabbergasted. i said, what you mean? he said, we would do things sexually and would sometimes start with a massage. amy: meanwhile, stephen reinboldt's sister, jolene burdge, said she found out when reinbolt told her he was gay. >> i asked him, steve, when was your first same-sex experience?
he just looked at me and said, it was with dennis hastert. and i just -- i know i was stunned. i said, why didn't you ever tell anybody? he was your teacher. why didn't you ever tell anybody? he just looked me and said, who is ever going to believe me? in this town, who is ever going to believe me? amy: reinbolt died of aids in 1995. according to jolene burdge hastert showed up at her brother's funeral. she says confronted hastert about the abuse. >> he just did there and stared at me. then i just continue to say, i want you to know that your secret did not die in there with my brother and i'm you to remember that i am out here and that i know. amy: the former student whom hastert was paying has not been identified. according to cbs news, authorities believe there could be a third victim. hastert served as speaker of the house from 1999 to 2007, making him the longest-serving republican speaker in history.
thousands of people marched in st. paul, minnesota on saturday in a show of opposition to tar sands pipelines. organizers focused on calling for the cancelation of the proposed sandpiper pipeline, which would run near pristine water reserves. saturday's action is said to be the largest anti-tar sands rally in the midwest to date. a manhunt is underway in new york after two convicted murderers escaped from a maximum-security prison. the prisoners used power tools to drill through the walls and break out of the clinton correctional facility in dannemora. charles guess of the new york state police said the pair may have had help. >> we're leaving no stone unturned. it is been approximately 36 hours since these inmates escaped. they could be literally anywhere. although we have notified our partners in canada, the ports of entry across the northern border , certainly every law enforcement agency in the northeast -- they could be out of state, but they still could
be holding her. we do not know if they had access to a vehicle, but we presume they may have had access to a vehicle as well as they may have received assistance in their escape efforts, if for no other reason, at least outside the secure perimeter of this facility. amy: it's the first escape from clinton's maximum-security wing in its history. governor andrew cuomo has declared the manhunt a "crisis situation." a texas police officer has been put on leave after video emerged of him wrestling an african-american teenage girl to the ground, pulling her hair and pulling his gun on another teen. the officer was helping respond to neighbors' complaints about a disturbance at a party the teens were attending at a local pool. several african-american teens in attendance say a dispute only broke out after local white residents voiced anger at their presence. the video appears to show the officers singling out the african-american teens.
the girl he pulled the gun on was wearing a bathing suit. a coroner has ruled the death of a 21-year-old nigerian native in a savannah, georgia jail cell a homicide. he died on new year's day of what the corner described as blunt form us -- force trauma including skin injuries about the head and some other areas about the body. he was restrained in isolation so after authorities say he becamelast month nine deputies were fired in connection with his death. meanwhile, the graphic full video of a salt lake city, utah police officer shooting an unarmed man last summer has been released. the video shows the officer approaching dylan taylor as he walks away from him with headphones in his ears. the officer shouted taylor to get his hands out, then opens fire as taylor appears to raise
his hands. >> get your hands down, now. get your hands -- get them out. [gun shot] shots fired, shots fired. get me medical here, now. amy: the officer searches his pockets as blood gushes from his chest and abdomen, covering his face. the shooting took place two days after the killing of michael brown in ferguson missouri. the salt lake county district attorney ruled a justified saying officer crews "reasonably perceived a threat." an immigrant teenage mom has attempted suicide at a private texas family detention center after being denied asylum. nineteen-year-old lilian olia yamileth has sought refuge with her four-year old son in the u.s. to escape severe domestic abuse in her native honduras. but after her bid was denied she cut her wrist and left a suicide note saying she has been "treated worse than an animal." doctors say her wound is
non-life threatening. the karnes facility holds a number of immigrant women and children. last week, karnes released five pregnant women just hours after their detention was revealed. a funeral was held on saturday for beau biden, the late son of vice president joe biden. beau biden died last week of brain cancer at the age of 46. president obama delivered the eulogy. >> it is no secret that a lot of what made beau the way he was was just how much he loved and admired his dad. he studied law, like his dad even choosing the same law school. he chased public service like his dad, believing it to be a noble and important pursuit. from his dad he learned how to get back up when life knocked him down. he learned that he was no higher
than anybody else and no lower than anybody else. in the co-here in new york, -- amy: here in new york a young , man imprisoned for three years at rikers in new york without charge has committed suicide. kalief browder was a 16 year old high school sophomore when he was detained on suspicion of stealing a backpack. browder never pleaded guilty and was never convicted. he maintained his innocence and requested a trial, but was only offered plea deals while the trial was repeatedly delayed. after enduring nearly 800 days in solitary confinement and abuses from guards, browder was only released when the case was dismissed. browder died last week at his home in the bronx. he was 22 years old. we'll have more on this story later in the broadcast. and those are some of the headlines. this is democracy now! democracynow.org, the war and peace report, i'm amy goodman with juan gonzalez.
juan: welcome. climate change is a top agenda item as leaders of the seven wealthy democracies known as the group of seven wrap up a two-day meeting in germany today. heads of state from britain, canada, france, germany, italy japan and the united states are holding talks in a secluded resort housed in a 100-year-old castle. outside the summit, protesters have been met by a massive show of police force, with as many as 20,000 officers deployed for crowd control. thousands of demonstrators took to the streets saturday in the nearby town of garmisch to oppose other issues under discussion, including the transpacific partnership trade deal or tpp, and austerity , measures. this is stop g7 spokesperson benjamin russ. >> it is totally over the top. and one has to see the way we have been walking in the streets and organize ourselves well. the camp was well organized.
this massive police presence is totally over the top. juan: on sunday, leaders and reporters had to be shuttled to the g7 talks by helicopter after protesters blocked a main road. today the summit host, german , chancellor angela merkel of germany is seeking endorsement , of goals to limit the increase in global temperatures and to provide financing to countries dealing with the impact of climate change. amy: talks are expanding today with the addition of several african leaders, and iraqi prime minister, haider al-abadi, who is set to meet with president obama. meanwhile, a $10.4 billion bailout package for greece has been a central focus among the country's creditors attending the summit, including heads of the european union, european central bank and the international monetary fund. greek prime minister alexis tsipras is in attendance. -- is not in attendance, and neither is russian president vladimir putin, as leaders agreed to continue sanctions against russia over its
aggression in ukraine. well for more we're joined by three guests. joining us from garmisch germany, near the g7 summit, is gawain kripke, director of policy and research at oxfam . they've just published a new report called "let them eat coal" which notes the g7 countries remain major consumers of coal which is the biggest driver of climate change and world hunger. in washington, d.c., eric lecompte is the executive director of jubilee usa. he was recently in dresden, germany, for the g7 finance ministers gathering. and here in new york, nomi prins is a former managing director at bear stearns and goldman sachs and previously an analyst at lehman brothers and chase manhattan bank. now a distinguished senior fellow at demos. she is also the author of, "all the presidents' bankers: the hidden alliances that drive american power," which was just released in paperback. last week, prins was invited to address global central bank leaders at the federal reserve and imf's annual conference. welcome all of you to democracy now! let's first go to gawain kripke.
can you talk about the massive protest going on outside, and that even larger police presence , believed to be the largest police operation in bavarian history, why people are protesting the g-7 summit? >> it is a very energetic protest that started in munich a few days ago and then moved up here to the mountains. it is a widecomplaints that the protesters have against the g7. i was a the biggest one that i observed was a real concern about the real free trade agreement that is being negotiated between europe and the united states with a concern among the protesters that he would be pushing lower standards for things like energy efficiency and food safety onto european markets. so a real resistance so that trade agreement from the protesters. protesters are also concerned about climate change, global poverty, and a range of other issues. juan: on the issue of global poverty, what are some of the
concerns that you feel from oxfam are not being addressed by the summit? >> the g7 have always fashion themselves as the board of directors for global development in the global economy. we always look to them to make new commitments and statements about ending poverty and reducing hunger. we're hoping for something ambitious from the g7 leaders. this is a very important year for global poverty and climate change. a very big conferences get up for later -- is scheduled for later this year. we're looking for them to say something about the richest and most developed countries will take actions to reduce their climate change, to provide funding for least developed countries and also developed and a clean way and to end hunger which is going to be one of the big goals that will come out of the u.n. later this year in which the world will try to end hunger by 2030. amy: can you describe the scene for us?
the g7 meeting in this 100-year-old castle, and the massive police presence outside along with thousands of protesters? >> right. it is very beautiful for one thing. it is a great location will stop the castle is quite remote and we cannot even see it from where we are. most of the protesters and nonprofits and most media are located some distance from the castle. we see it on tv, but we're not really observing it. the protesters are in the streets. they have any cam and a few miles away that i'm told is very orderly. there have been some big rainstorms, so it is a bit muddy. protesters are going around the streets in a very festive way and laying out their concerns. the police presence, what i've seen is pretty restrained but massive and looks highly militarized. they're marching down the streets and columns looking like soldiers. but i haven't seen a lot of writing or excessive abuse myself -- riotin or excessive
abuseg musso. juan: one of the biggest issues is dead and what to do about greece and in general the restructuring of the banking system of the world following the 2008 crisis. i'm wondering, you have spoken to the imf recently. what is the main message you are trying to send to those who are dealing with financial reform? >> one of the things i talked about in washington last week is that there is a continued instability, which some of them no and some refuse to admit, and the financial system throughout the world. that is had an effect on global economies everywhere. there was a decision made by private banks and governments together at the highest levels of these countries to help the banking system at the expense of the people system, the real economy, to invoke austerity measures and older to pay bondholders. -- in order to pay bondholders. when you talk about the
situation in greece, greece has been saying for a long time is look, the austerity measures are impossible to use relative to the fact our economy has slowed down in our debt, the strings attached to the bailout that we received in order to pay bondholders, in order to pay the imf and central banks and so forth, are impossible to pay. they yet they continue to facilitate stability for the financial system in the major banks around the world. so they are getting the money they are getting the benefit. people in the countries outside of that upper echelon are simply getting hurt. amy: you have written about clinton cash. can you explain what that means and what it actually has to do with what we're talking about today? what it has to do with the g7 and banking in the united states a multinational banking. >> it is a book that recently came out where they look at some of the clinton foundation associations with countries and
i go further into examining whether associations are with a major banks in these countries particularly from the united states. if you follow a two decade through line from when bill clinton became president through hillary clinton now trying to become president, you see the relationships along the way with bank of america, citigroup goldman sachs and so forth whether through appointive positions, whether through money along the side where they're pushing the policies of deregulation and benefit to the banks of the rest of the population, a continue to go through. in the beginning we had deregulation coming into the clinton administration. with the glass-steagall act been repealed which meant the bigger banks can become bigger and consolidate people deposits with all of these risky derivatives and other types of transactions, which then imploded the financial system. in the wake of the financial crisis, that still exist. relative the dust to the rest of the world, the banks are bigger than before the crisis and received more help from obama's government which has a lot of
people in it from the administration, from a treasury perspective, and they continue to thrive at the expense of the real economy. in addition, the clinton foundation has received from 250,000 a $5 million donation from the same largest institutions among others that continue to push their agenda throughout the united states as well as throughout the world. juan: do you think real structural change has occurred? we still get information or news about the libor exchange conspiracy, the currency manipulations. we see continued crime after crime in the financial world and are dozens and to be any really structural change occurring. >> they're basically hoarding cash. the result of these interim -- zero interest policies emanating from the fed and the united states and quantitative easing are buying bonds back in these banks, giving them more money, is a 400% more cash after the crisis than before not going
into the real economy and committing crimes. the big six banks in the united states have paid fines or settled to pay fines from to $130 billion. money laundering, mortgage fraud, goes on and on. amy: we just saw the us attorney general loretta lynch with this big announcement about fifa, the whole soccer scandal. person after person in the leadership have now been indicted. right before that was the allegations about banking fraud. we're not talking person after person, in fact, we're not talking anyone. we're talking about institutions, banks. can you address this as a person who worked at many of these banks from lehman brothers to goldman sachs? >> f theifa thing as a scandal such a nonevent relative to the fact we just recently had the $5.6 billion fine on ethics
reading meaning reading the currencies, these five banks including j.p. morgan and citigroup from the united states, ubs and barclays, they got together and read what people pay for goods back and forth. they harm -- they harmed the global economy. nowhere in the same vicinity of fine. no heads rolled. jamie dimon got a $20 million increase in his compensation, voted upon by shareholders right before the fx rigging find came out. amy: what would it mean? you lived within this culture. why aren't people indicted? why aren't people sent to jail? and what would it mean for what happens inside these banks as they were? >> i think would make a big difference of the heads of these banks -- some of the ceo's, if they would be sent to jail and held accountable in any personal way whatsoever at all the stuff instead, they've enabled a point fingers inside her institution.
that traitor did it, that was a bad department, at that apple approach. jamie dimon and lloyd blankfein continue to run these banks. it would make a difference. it was in a message that you can't do that. and not only have they not been sent to jail, not only have they not had any personal indictments or convictions, they also continue to get uphold it by their shareholders, which actually isn't something -- europe has kicked out some bankers. juan: i want to bring in eric lecompte of jubilee usa network. the issue of cold. we have heard over the weekend of norway sovereign wealth fund decided to invest in coal investments. could you talk about the g-7 nations role in the issue of coal? >> the entire role of the g7, as they describe themselves, is to focus on global economic growth.
when we're looking at these particular issues around divestment, i think we also see a lot of connections between what nomi was describing in terms of how the local patent system is operated as well as what gawain described as the protesters on the ground, these 2 -- trade agreements as well as overall negligence to really addressing corporal -- mobile policy issues. when we look at greece in the developing world, when we look at the international monetary fund, the european central bank and others, wanting to promote a higher degree of austerity in greece in order for them to receive more bailout funds, we have to understand that fundamentally, we're dealing with a problem of global instability. in fact, when the g7 financial ministers met last week in dresden, when i was in dresden the chief focus, how the table was actually said for this g-7
summit, the financial ministers focused on the issues of high debt, being able to achieve growth and what is now considered by the g-7, and international monetary fund to be unsustainable debt, unsustainable debt that will prevent economic growth. i think is where looking at the greek situation, looking at these broader issues of divestment, i think we need to see real shifts in terms of how the global financial system operates. and i think one of the issues that was very interesting that is now been at the table at the united nations with three general assemblies -- general simile votes working on a process, the international monetary funds for the last two years has been working on a process. last week in dresden, we saw all of the major religious leaders the catholic bishops, the protestant bishops call on the g-7 to end poverty i bringing stability, by correcting a
global bankruptcy process to end policy -- poverty. we saw german finance minister attend because we know these issues are so key right now that we do need to see some solutions if we're going to have greater stability in the markets and the global financial system. juan: in terms of the whole issue of a global bankruptcy regime, what about the issue of the ability of so many corporations to hide their wealth and profits in tax sheltering countries? >> this is an incredible concern. we have to understand that debt and tax are flip sides of the same coin. two years ago at the summit, we saw the g-7 take some historic action. they caught on broadway's decrypt corporate tax avoidance, to be up to stop his anonymous shell corporations, which around the world are hiding these
funds. and although we of seen some action, much of it is just been talk so far, i think at this particular summit, we've also heard the reviewing these issues. this last summer here in washington president obama and the white house hosted a very important africa summit and one of the main drives that came out of that summit is the curbing of corporate tax avoidance evasion and corruption because right now, the developing world is losing $1 trillion he year to these illicit financial blows tax evasion, corruption. and we're looking at the question of greece right now. we have to say these issues are very much connected. certainly, more austerity plans for greece are not going to work. they can't be part of the recipe. enemies to be some real debt relief that we saw in 1953, ironically, with germany when germany had what in germans call the economic miracle. that was a direct result of the
1953 london accord where all of the lenders, all of the creditors were brought together to london, not only was germany given debt relief, but more important, germany was given what the greeks are asking for right now. and that is not even necessarily debt relief. it is to be able to extend those payments further in the future so that money can be invested in the people now. and that also deals with the tax issue that you're bringing up. we have to understand that in greece, there are issues in terms of corruption and tax evasion that although the government has done a better job by collecting these moneys, they need to also improve this in the future so they can get out of the debt trap. amy: we're going to take a break in a minute and stick with eric lecompte and gawain kripke. nomi, your final comment, for what is most important for people to assess what comes out of this summit? >> i totally was nodding to everything eric was saying. there has to be a moving over,
supporting the global real economy at the foundation levels. whether that is debt relief bringing in taxes so they are not off shelter deleveraging the banking system, making more transparent, cutting up the banks, making them responsible. they have gone all of this help to the real economies. all of that has to be part of it, otherwise, he continues and continues to hurt the economies least able and least getting from the top. amy: nomi prins is a former bank director, author of "all , the presidents' bankers: the hidden alliances that drive american power." we will go back to bavaria to speak with our guests, gawain kripke of oximeter, about the issue of coal and eric lecompte with us and washington d.c. stay with us. ♪ [music break]
amy: the weavers, "if i had a hammer." singer ronnie gilbert died on saturday in mill valley, california. the great folksinger was 88. this is democracy now! democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman with juan gonzalez. we are still with eric lecompte jubilee usa network, most recently in dresden, germany for the g-7 finance ministers gathering. and we are joined by gawain kripke, the director of policy and research at oxfam america. he is currently in germany for the g-7 summit, a little ways away from this castle where the group of seven wealthiest democracies are meeting. juan: gawain kripke i should more have proper asked about the issue of the g7 and coal in the relationship is there
discussing climate change, the relationship to coal production worldwide. >> the g-7 leaders come here every year and say they want to attack climate change. at the end of the day, the communiqué says very little. your president obama earlier in the program megyn climate change is one of the big issues they will take up at the g-7. chancellor merkel is talking about this and other leaders have said so. we want to see some real action. this is the your to do it. oxfam has been calling on the g-7 leaders to commit to phasing out coal from our energy portfolio. it is quite feasible to do. coal is no longer the cheapest option, but it is certainly the dirtiest option. it is quite feasible for the g-7 countries to phase out coal and make a big step toward solving the problem of climate change. we made that call before they started, and we will see what
they do when they come out of the g-7 summit. we will know within an hour what they're going to do. we don't expect them to take the big step they need to. it all rings a little false were leaders say they want to tackle, change and don't do much. amy: paris, france is coming up in december. that is the u.n. climate summit. that is different from the others, back to more like what happened in kyoto. it will be a binding summit. what is oxfam america calling for and how is this setting the table for that? >> the first thing to recognize is historically, climate change is a problem caused by developed countries. in the room at the g7 is -- our leaders representing 50% of the carbon in our atmosphere right now. these guys have a special responsibility dealt solve this problem. developing countries have been coming up and producing more climate change, but the problem started in rich countries and
the solution should start in rich countries. we're calling on develop countries to the big commitment to reducing their carbon emissions and also to providing the funding necessary for the world economy to move to zero carbon energy sources and to adopt -- adapt to the climate change we know is going to happen. many of the poorest countries and many of the poorest people are very vulnerable to changes in the weather. most farmers in africa depend on the rain. they don't have irrigation. if the rain changes, they're really in trouble. we think the richest countries in the world that are here have an obligation to help poor people in poor countries adapt to climate change. we are calling on them to make commitments in copenhagen. leaders have said they would provide $100 billion the year to make these transitions. so far that money has not been coming. juan: on sunday, what a spokesman josh earnest will reporters -- told reporters they
discussed greece at of the g-7 summit. >> as a relates to greece, i will say there is anonymity of just you nanometer the -- unanimity of opinion and greece and their partners to chart a way forward that built on crucial structural reforms and returns greece to sustainable long-term growth. we are pleased that we've seen some are indications from the greek government and there obviously is a deadline that is looming and the president certainly hopeful that greece and their partners will be able to chart this path without causing undue volatility in the global financial markets. juan: eric lecompte greece keeps being discussed. and here at this summit, they're not even there, honestly, at the
table. your thoughts on this issue of the g7 again trying to resolve the months long crisis with greece? >> we have to understand, just as some background in terms of the greek situation we look at greece as one of the most terrible examples of how the global financial crisis impacted our world. the further we get away from the crisis of 2008, all economists tend to agree where getting closer to the next crisis. and our inability to deal with the greek situation illustrates a greater inability to deal with the global situation. in 2010, instead of dealing with a severe debt problems that took place in greece, the catalan -- the can was kicked down the road or emergency financing was given which mostly bailed out the private sector, german banks and others, which -- without
really dealing with the problem. intense austerity measures were put in place in 2010. and those measures now, the international monetary fund agrees, are essentially, what drove about one third of the entire population of greece under the poverty line. greece now, instead of dealing with those problems in 2010, the third most indebted country of the world. and right now, what leaders are talking about are more financing as opposed to dealing with the debt situation head on. we have to understand that greece also example of eyes what went wrong -- example of eyes what went wrong with the financial system. although were leaders and offer leaping on solutions, they're all agreeing on the problems. we see those in greece. the greek crisis was caused because of combination of an unsustainable debt load and speculative, extreme risky investments. we see that in the mortgage crisis, back here at home, we see it in developing countries
having to security issues and becoming a global economic crisis. the question now, what should be done about greece? what needs to be done moving forward to not only address the greek problem, but to promote real global stability? well, in greece, more financing isn't necessarily the answer. we saw last week the greek government say they're going to bundle their imf payments to the end of this month, about 1.6 billion euros. they delayed the payment, $218 million last week, as a negotiating tactic will stop we have the greeks and the g-7, we have the german, european central bank plana poker match with people's lives. what is happening right now is a negotiation of how much austerity for financing the greeks are willing to take. we go back to what happened in 1953 with the london accord where we sell real global bankruptcy process that led for the economic miracle for germany
to become one of the strong east economies in the world. and we see that as a model for the greek situation. that we can have a global bankruptcy process that not only can be applied for greece, the now for the financial system stem risky investment behavior and start to get debt loads around the world in a more sustainable place. amy: it is not only that germany has taken the lead in going after greece on debt, but the g7 is taking place in germany. and they head of -- the prime and asked her of greece is not there as putin is not there although the prime minister of iraq are meeting, for example, with president obama today. what is the significance of this? >> i think it is for significant. we have to understand that just last week, greece was considered to be a part of the official agenda of the g7 and then on friday we saw it removed.
we know it dominated the conversation yesterday. part of what we're seeing by the g-7, to some degree, a snub of greece. we're seeing the obama administration, it is aligning with the other g-7 countries, and starting to take a hard-line approach with greece. and although what the white house is continually said about working together, about keeping greece in the eurozone, not necessarily turning to austerity as a solution -- these are positive things, but we have to understand that with the summit being hosted in germany, that right now angela merkel along with the other g7 leaders are snubbing greece and trying to play hardball with them. juan: is it your sense that there can be a deal worked out here or is it likely that the default will move forward in terms of greece? >> we are certainly concerned. we do recognize there is a real opportunity here to build a do something different, to be able to turn away from austerity, to
be able to start to invest in people and not to invest in banks, not to say the market should drive what is happening but as pope francis has pointed out, it is not about markets, it is about people. so we do see there is a real opportunity. we see there are models. we see is some points there have been positive conversation. i think the concern we have right now is at the end of the day, from conversations that we've also had with governments and seeing how these kinds of issues are moving forward that the germans and others are perhaps willing to just push greece outside the eurozone and perhaps look at some of these policies for greater stability in the future. because even though greece is happening right now, even some of the g7 countries themselves and some of the wealthiest countries of europe from italy to spain are dealing with these serious debt issues. so we have even heard acknowledgments from the german government that eventually, they
do want to create a bankruptcy process, at least for the eurozone. but in the short-term we might see the greeks getting pushed out and them bearing the brunt of what has been a problem of the making of the banks in the private sector. amy: eric lecompte, thank you for being with us, head of jubilee usa network and gawain kripke speaking to us from germany for the g-7 summit. stay with us for our next segment, the tragic news that he young man here in new york that was held without charge for three years at rikers, much of that time in solitary confinement. he went in when he was 16 years ol supposedly, for stealing a backpack which he said he never did. kalief browder has just committed suicide. stay with us. ♪ [music break]
amy: "a woman is missing your go on a gilbert died saturday. she was 88 years old. she cofounded the weavers in the 1940's with pete seeger and fred hillerman. they out talk to arise but music and bring its message of social change to the world. arlo guthrie said "she was one fourth of the weavers, which in and of itself would have qualified her the badge of courage but she also go to -- when i drove like to stand as a beacon in her life or anyone hoping to make the world a little more equal and normal for those too often told to stay on the fringes of society."
this is democracy now! democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman with juan gonzalez. a perfect segue into the tragic ending. juan: we end today's show with tragic news about kalief browder committed suicide. on saturday, he took his own life at his home in the bronx. he was 22 years old. in 2010, browder was just 16 years old when he was sent to rikers island jail without trial on suspicion of stealing a backpack. earlier this year, the new yorker obtained explosive video showing the violence to which browder was subjected there. surveillance camera footage shows browder being abused on two separate occasions. in one clip from 2012, the teenager is seen inside rikers' central punitive segregation unit, better known as the bing. as a guard escorts browder to the showers, browder appears to speak, and then the guard suddenly violently hurls him to
the floor although he's already , handcuffed. in a separate video clip from 2010, kalief is attacked by almost a dozen other teenage inmates after he punches a gang member who spat in his face. the other inmates pile onto kalief and pummel him until guards finally intervene. kalief's case led to calls for reforming new york's criminal justice system. amy: on the night of his arrest, kalief browder was walking home from a party with his friends in the bronx on may 15, 2010, when he was stopped by police based on a tip that he had robbed someone weeks earlier. he told huff post live what happened next. >> they had searched me and the guy at first said i robbed him and i didn't have anything on me. >> you say nothing, no weapon. >> no weapon, no money and he said i allegedly robbed him for. so the guy actually changed up his story and said that i tried to rob him.
then another police officer came and said that i robbed him two weeks prior. they said, we're going to take you to the precinct and most likely we are going to let you go home. i never went home. amy: kalief browder did not return home for 33 months, even though he was never convicted. for nearly 800 days of that time he was held in solitary , confinement. he maintained his innocence and requested a trial, but was only offered plea deals while the trial was repeatedly delayed. near the end of his time in jail, the judge offered to sentence him to time served if he entered a guilty plea, and told him he could face 15 years in prison if he was convicted. he refused to accept the deal, and was only released when the case was dismissed. we're joined once again by jennifer gonnerman, reporter author and contributing editor at new york magazine. she was the first to report browder's suicide in her obituary for the new yorker on sunday. she first recounted kalief browder's story last year in her
article, "before the law: a boy was accused of taking a backpack. the courts took the next three years of his life." welcome back to democracy now! is it fair to say the courts in the prison system actually took his life? >> i don't know what was going through kalief's might in the last few minutes but it is without a doubt he was completely traumatized by those years he was trapped on records island, despite never having been convicted of a crime, brutalized by officers and fellow inmates alike, as your viewers saw on the video footage that you guys showed. juan: he had attempted suicide while in jail numerous times as well. after coming out. could you talk about that expense, that process, what he told you about that? >> he spent two years in solitary confinement on records island and attended to end his life several times while he was there. and described some of those
instances for me. i wrote about some of it in "the new yorker." after he was released, in 2013, several months later he again -- he can again attempt at suicide and spent some time in the hospital. he tried to be back to nightmares and transcend what he thugh and make up for all of this lost time. he was enrolled at bronx committee college and doing well. i spoke to some be there yesterday. get a 3.5 gpa, which is extraordinary. he lost his junior and senior year of high school while locked up. so every day he was grappling with sort of trying to move past what he had endured. i guess each from a was too much. amy: i want to turn to kalief browder in his own words. in this december 2013 interview with huff post live's mark lamont hill, browder talked about his suicide attempts at rikers and his efforts to get psychiatric help. >> i would say i attempted to
commit suicide five or six times. >> all while still in prison? >> yes. >> wow. >> i tried to resort to telling the correction officers that i wanted to see a psychiatrist or counselor, something. i needed mental health because i wasn't feeling right. all of the stress from my case, everything was getting to me and i just could not take it. i needed somebody to talk to. i needed to -- i just needed to talk and be stress-free. at the correction officers, they did not want to hear me out. nobody wanted to listen. amy: that is kalief browder. he went to jail when he was 16 years old. never was tried. the judge said he could get out if he just pled out. he said, no, i'm not guilty. >> he had been locked up for over 2.5 years at that moment. he had gone through all of this incredible trauma and was given a chance to walk out the door and was anybody would take that opportunity.
just to get home. she refused. he said, i did nothing wrong. he wanted that trial. amy: he hung himself on saturday? >> yes. juan: if there's any positive sense of that can come out of this, it is the reforms that have resulted, not only from his experience, but from your chronicling his experience. can you talk about with the city of new york has tried to do in recent months to reform, especially, how it handles juveniles in its jail system? >> there have been a number of reforms or attempt at reforms in recent months. at the end of last year, the mayor laminated solitary confinement for juvenile offenders on rikers island -- amy: because of kalief? >> i think that was part of it. it wasn't the only contributor. the mayor did cite kalief's case when he talked about a new initiative to try to speed up court cases, especially in the bronx, but across the city.
excessive court delays having going on, that is part of the reason he spent so much time in jail. whether these reforms will lead to lasting change, i don't know. we can only hope that, you know, his death is not in vain and real systematic change happens. amy: as we briefly so what happened him, aside from being jailed at all, these videos that came out that we had you on for when they came out, very unusual to get a video from inside, a guard taking him down, the other person who is beating him up. >> it almost defies belief. he is only from the first no one i met him, stories about being abused on rikers island. i never doubted him for a moment, but i think as an outsider, it is a must impossible to believe what he lived through. when you see it on the videos -- it was disturbing to watch those videos several months ago when we put them online, but to watch them in the wake of what happened, it is a must -- it is unbelievable. juan: you have reviewed the
videos with him before deciding whether to publish them or post them. then you talk about his reaction to seeing or reliving it through the videos? >> from the first moment i met him, he said je, yet to get thatn video when this officer threw me to the ground and assaulted me. i thought, how am i going to get a video get them than i thought, how does he know the exact? he had an incredible recall for dates and for what had happened him. he knew this assaulted happened right on camera. i sat next to him and we watched it. on the one hand, it is like incredibly disturbing to watch. on the other hand, is gratified that people would finally know what happened to him. the whole thing is so disturbing to some is beyond words. amy: was he suing the new york city system? >> he has been for almost two years, had a lawsuit against new
york city, the department of corrections, the district attorney for his case, hoping to get some justice. like his common ok's, his civil case has been dragging on. -- like his criminal case, his civil base has been dragging on. sitting for hours and getting grilled about what happened, including his suicide attempts on rikers island. amy: he is survived by his mom. could you talk about his family? you spent this weekend, number of hours there. his mother found him. >> his family is very private and did not want to be public or talk publicly about what happened. as you can imagine appeared to be completely devastated and confused and angry, as you would imagine, by this tragedy. juan: was he under treatment for depression or was he -- did he have prescription drugs as a result of his numerous suicide attempts? >> yeah, no, he was getting some treatment and was on medication
at the time and have been for many months. amy: jennifer gonnerman, your work in introducing the world to kalief is so important and i'm so sad that we have lost him now at the age of 22. jennifer gonnerman is a staff writer for the new yorker magazine. she was the first to report browder's suicide in her obituary for the new yorker on sunday. she previously recounted kalief browder's story last year in her article "before the law: a boy , was accused of taking a backpack. the courts took the next three years of his life." we will link to that story. that does it for our broadcast. democracy now! is looking for feedback from people who appreciate the closed captioning. e-mail your comments to email@example.com or mail them to democracy now! p.o. box 693 new york, new york 10013. [captioning made possible by democracy now!]
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