tv Democracy Now PBS July 10, 2017 12:00pm-1:01pm PDT
07/10/17 07/10/17 [captioning made possible by democracy now!] amy: from pacifica, this is democracy now! >> western mosul, the worst damage in the entire complex. the fighting has been the fiercest. looking at levels comparable to anything else that has happened in iraq so far. amy: iraqi forces have retake the city of mosul from isis after a vicious nine-month battle that killed thousands of civilians and left over 700,000 iraqis displaced. we will get the latest. then the g20 rebukes president trump for pulling out of the paris accords. >> like other world leaders
here, i'm dismayed at the u.s. decision to pull out of the paris agreement. i urge president trump to rejoin the paris agreement. the u.k.'s on commitment to the paris agreement and tackling global climate change is as strong as ever. amy: while the g20 shames donald trump, world leaders to know actions dish took actions. does jared kushner know anything about the countries he is supposed to be doing diplomacy with? we will talk to journalist amy wilentz. all that and more, coming up. welcome to democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. at the united nations headquarters in new york, 122 countries have approved a global treaty to ban the use of nuclear weapons. the historic vote on friday came after months of talks in which the united nations led the
in the end, all countries with nuclear arms ended up boycotting the negotiations. the historic vote now means within two years, there could be the ratification necessary to enter the treaty into international law. the president of the u.n. conference said -- on sunday, iraqi prime minister haider al-abadi travel to mosul to declare u.s.-backed iraqi troops had seized control of all of mosul from isis. according to the journalistic monitoring group air wars, u.s.-by coalition forces fired 29,000 munitions into the city during the nine-month assault. air wars is estimating between 900 and 1200 civilians were likely killed by coalition air and artillery strikes during the
assault on mosul, but the overall death toll is significantly higher. the international red cross reports seeing a tremendous increase in civilian casualties in recent weeks. according to the united nations come almost 700,000 residents are still displaced, nearly half living in emergency camps. we will have more on mosul after the headlines with award-winning journalist azmat khan. "the new york times is reporting donald trump junior agreed to meet with a kremlin-linked lawyer during the 2016 campaign after being promised damaging information about hillary clinton. jared kushner, trump jr., and trump's then-campaign chairman paul manafort attended the meeting with russian lawyer natalia veselnitskaya at trump tower two weeks after trump won the republican nomination. since the news broke, donald trump jr. has given at least two conflicting explanations for the meeting. on saturday, he first issued a statement that made no mention
of being promised information on clinton, saying only that the meeting was about the u.s. adoption of russian children. then on sunday, trump jr. issued another statement, saying -- "i was asked to have a meeting by an acquaintance i knew from the 2013 miss universe pageant with an individual who i was told might he information helpful to the campaign." in the statement, donald trump jr. went on to claim that the lawyer said people connected to russia were supporting clinton's campaign, but that -- "her statements were vague, ambiguous and made no sense." "the new york times'" revelations come as president trump is facing multiple investigations into his ties to russia and whether members of his campaign colluded with the ruianso inrferin the u.s. electn. donald trump jr. also faced iticism on saturday for retweeting a doctored clip of the movie "tom gun," edited so that it appears president trump
is a fighter pilot shooting down a jet with the cnn logo. this comes less than a week after president trump faced criticism for tweeting a doctored video of himself body slamming and beating a figure whose head has been replaced by the cnn logo. the trump white house is also considering blocking a pending merger between time warner -- cnn's parent company- and at&t amid trump's escalating feud with the network. meanwhile, another one of trump's children, ivanka trump, also sparked criticism when she took her father's seat briefly at the g20 summit, sitting between british prime minister theresa may and chinese president xi jinping. the move was widely criticized back in the united states given training trump is a businesswoman with no diplomatic express of no elected position in the administration. "new york times" columnist nicholas kristoff tweeting -- "ivanka fills in for her dad beside xi jinping. to me, it feels banana-republicky for the u.s.
to be represented by an inexperienced daughter." both ivanka trump and her husband jared kushner serve as senior advisers to trump. we'll have more on the trump family, including donald trump jr. and jared kushner, later in the broadcast. this comes after president trump and russian president vladimir putin had their first official sit-down meeting on the sidelines of the g20 summit in hamburg, germany, on friday. during the two-hour meeting, the two discussed a ceasefire in parts of southwest syria, whether russia intervened in the 2016 u.s. election, and a plan -- which trump is already backing away from -- to form a joint cyber security team to work against election hacking. on sunday, trump tweeted -- "i strongly pressed president putin twice about russian meddling in our election. he vehemently denied it. i've already given my opinion." following the meeting, russian president putin said trump had accepted his denial of election interference. >> our position is well-known.
i have spoken about it. there are no grounds to believe russia interfered with the election process in the united states. asks a lot of questions about this issue. i answer these as well as i could. it seems to me he accepted it and agreed, but you're better off asking him what he thought about it. amy: trump is now backpedaling on the plan to form a joint cyber security unit with russia, after facing widespread backlash over the weekend, including from south carolina republican senator lindsey graham. >> the dumbest idea i've ever heard, but it is pretty close. he had what i think is a disastrous meeting with president clinton. -- president putin. tillerson and trump are ready to forgive and forget when it comes to cyber attacks on the american election of 2016? amy: monitoring groups say ceasefire brokered by trump and putin for parts of southwest
syria does appears to be holding, as a new round of u.n.-sponsored peace talks open today in geneva. the territory covered by the ceasefire includes rebel-held areas of deraa where opposition officials say weeks of intense bombing by the syrian government stopped after the ceasefire took effect sunday. however, fighting continues in other parts of the country, including in raqqa, where the journalistic group raqqa is being slaughtered silently says 23 civilians were killed by u.s.-led coalition airstrikes and shelling by u.s.-backed forces over the weekend. the g20 summit closed in hamburg, germany, on saturday with all 19 countries except for the united states signing on to a declaration calling the 2015 paris climate accord irreversible. multiple world leaders condemned president trump and the united states for being the sole g20 country to break its commitment to the paris deal. this is british prime minister theresa may. >> like other world leaders here, i'm dismayed at the us decision to pull out of the paris agreement will stuff and i
urge president trump to rejoin the paris agreement. uk's own commitment to the paris agreement in tackling global climate change is as strong as ever. amy: despite the unity among all 19 other g20 countries on the paris climate accord, environmental organizations say the g20 countries still provide $72 billion per year in public financing for fossil fuels -- nearly four times as much as they provide for clean energy. on saturday morning, greenpeace activists outside the g20 summit scaled a prominent bridge and hung a gigantic banner that simply stated "end coal." later in the day, more than 75,000 people took to the streets of hamburg for a massive demonstration against the g20. the massive march capped off days of widespread demonstrations against the g20, which saw more than 100,000 demonstrators and violent police repression, including the use of water cannons, pepper spray, and stun grenades to disperse protesters. we'll have more on the g20 countries public financing for fossil fuels later in the broadcast.
arizona senator john mccain and other senate republicans are expressing increasing doubt that they'll be able to push through the republican healthcare plan, as lawmakers return to capitol hill today from a week-long recess. >> it is probably going to be but i have been wrong. i thought i would be president of the united states. i fear that it is going to fail should convene republican conference and say, what are we going to do? amy: if passed, the republican senate healthcare plan could cause 22 million americans to lose their insurance over the next decade. president trump has been heavily backing the healthcare plan, and this morning tweeted -- "i cannot imagine that congress would dare to leave washington without a beautiful new healthcare bill fully approved and ready to go!" in turkey, hundreds of thousands of people rallied in istanbul sunday on the final day of a
260-mile march from ankara protesting turkish president erdogan's brutal crackdown against civil society. this is opposition leader kemal kilicdaroglu. >> the air we live in is a dictatorship. i want everyone to know this is a dictatorship era. the government took advantage of the coup attempt that was carried out july 15 and they staged a coup on july 20 a declaring a state of emergency. ofy usurped the power parliament. recall that the july 15 coup of the presidential palace. the implementations of the state of emergency which turned into a civil coup is given powers to one man. amy: since the failed military coup nearly one year ago, the turkish government has jailed 40,000 people and 150,000 teachers, judges and other state workers have been suspended. the massive demonstration came the same day secretary of state rex tillerson praised president erdogan and his government while speaking in istanbul at the world petroleum congress conference where he was
receiving the lifetime achievement award for his work as the longtime head of exxonmobil. >> i take this moment to recognize their courage and honor the victims of the events of july 15, 2016. it was on that day at the turkish people exercised their rights under the turkish constitution, defended their place in a proper us turkey. -- prosperous turkey. we remember those who were injured or died in that event. amy: "the new york times" is saying a team of international investigators were surveilled to have been dispatched to mexico to investigate the high-profile disappearance of 43 students at the teachers college in guerrero in 2014. the international investigators included some of latin america's most prominent lawyers who had been granted a form of diplomatic immunity.
"the times" has also reported the mexican government also used the spying software called pegasus to spy on mexican human rights activists and journalists. amnesty international is condemning the trial against prominent palestinian activist whose trial in israeli military court began on sunday. isso amro is the founder of the group youth against settlements. he faces 18 counts, including insulting an israeli soldier. the military courts in the israeli occupied west bank have a nearly 100% conviction rate. issa amro told electronic intifada -- "under israeli military law, i am already convicted. it is a racist court in an apartheid system." back in the united states and charlottesville, virginia, more than 1000 people protested against a small ku klux klan rally on saturday. the rally was in protest of the city's decision to remove a statue of the confederate general robert e. lee. after the hooded kkk members departed, police moved in and
attacked the counter protesters with tear gas and arrested 23 people. in austin, texas, family members and residents are mourning the death of 22-year-old bakari jaward henderson, an african american tourist who was beaten to death outside a bar in greece. henderson had just recently graduated from the university of arizona. henderson was attacked by at least 10 people and was beaten even after he was unconscious. thousands of residents across california and western canada have been forced to evacuate as massive uncontrolled wildfires destroyed homes, close tie with, and shut down at least one airport. british colombia has declared a state of emergency. this is british columbia resident chris sonmor. >> i woke up about 1:30 the afternoon because i work nights. i woke up to a bunch of texts from my wife. i went out on my patio in the fire was coming down the
mountainside. amy: 122 countries have approved a global treaty to ban the use of nuclear weapons despite the united states leading the opposition to the treaty. and those are some of the headlines. this democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. juan: and i'm juan gonzalez. welcome to all of our listeners and viewers from around the country and around the world. we turn now to iraq where the nine-month long battle to retake mosul from the self-proclaimed islamic state is coming to an end. on sunday, iraqi prime minister haider al-abadi traveled to mosul, iraq's second largest city, to congratulate his troops. >> honestly, i've come to mosul today to follow-up on our victories in their eradication of isis, which we are in the final moments of doing. bes fighters have chosen to besieged because they have been given two options in the past, surrender or death.
most of them chose to die. they did not choose surrender, except for a small number, but the others were killed. we have no other option for isis fighters. most isis fighters in mosul have been killed. we have a small number. amy: while the fighting is nearly over in mosul, the humanitarian crisis is not. according to the united nations almost 700,000 residents are still displaced -- nearly half living in emergency camps. this is lisa grande, the u.n. humanitarian coordinator for iraq. >> western mosul, what we're seeing is the worst damage of the entire conflict. so in those neighborhoods with the fighting is been the fiercest, we're looking at levels of damage comparable to anything else that has happened in iraq so far. juan: according to the journalistic monitoring group
airwars, u.s.-backed coalition forces fired 29,000 munitions into the city during the nine-month assault. airwars is estimating between 900 and 1200 civilians were likely killed by coalition air and artillery strikes during the assault on mosul but the overall death toll is significantly higher. the international red cross reports seeing a tremendous increase in civilian casualties in recent weeks. amy: we are joined now by azmat khan. she is an award-winning investigative journalist and a future of war fellow at new america. she has spent the last year and a half investigating how the u.s.-led war against isis is playing out on the ground in iraq. you were recently in mosul. talk about the devastation there and the significance of what has just happened. >> the devastation in mosul is unprecedented when compared to every other city retaken from isis. it is symbolic and long five. mosul was the largest city
overtaken by isis, but no one believes this is over. the level of destruction is incredible. come,will be violence to despite these last pockets finally have an been taken. -- eastn used mosul was mosul was retaken several month ago, there were a spate of suicide bombings, booby-traps, snipers. happen to really antagonize the local population even after it had been retaken, and we will see much more of that on this other side of mosul. this west mosul side really has in coalition airstrikes, isis attacks, borne the brunt of things that are unprecedented when compared to other parts of iraq. juan: why has it been so devastating? is it that isis had support among the population or the were many more fighters involved? or is it just indiscriminate bombing on the part of the u.s. forces? >> there is certainly a history involved. this side of mosul is where many
of those were antigovernment violent groups, not just isis, but others, had largely been present in this part of the city. it is also sort of historically one of the areas in which these groups were able to sort of camp out. what you have seen is certain parts of it were incredibly symbolic. we recently saw a mosque blown up by isis. many of these artifacts are in this area. it was the last sort of hold out area. historically, this part of mosul , because it is closer to the border with syria, has been where a lot of militants who cross borders have been located. in this case, you have seen both that historical role factor in, but also the fact that just the terrain itself is harder to retake. so you have, essentially, a much, much harder fight when compared with east mosul, and
people are ready for this last city to be retaken, this last major city to be retaken. there are still parts of iraq held by isis. these airstrikes have played a large role in liberation period s. the closer you get to liberating the city and iraq, you will see the threshold for civilian casualties go up him and that is what we're seeing right now in west mosul. amy: of course, the old idea, they had to destroy the village to save it. at the horror of mosul -- describe your conversations with people, where you were, and what people were saying about isis, the u.s., about the iraqi security forces. >> one of the things i heard repeatedly from hundreds of people i have spoken to is the fact that when isis first took over, they were not incredibly's great -- incredibly strict. it was because it was aligned with other antigovernment groups
line.ook less strict of a that changed as time went by. people who originally welcomed isis because they were upset with the government, found themselves starting to doubt or question not just the religiosity of isis, but also its intentions with the local population. what many people said turned them were things, for example, the way they detain people, the way they executed people publicly, the way that police and other members of the security forces had been targeted. their family members and others had sort of been eradicated as soon as isis moved in. but all of those things became far more invasive as time went on. ofyou had this as one sort aspect of what civilians in mosul underwent, but then you had the air war, which started in august of 2014. the iraqi air force had already been bombing isis territories. but when the u.s. led coalition
joined, the pace of airstrikes went up considerably. mosul has seen a large brunt of those airstrikes. at least 2000 of some 13,000 that the air force has conducted -- i'm sorry, the coalition has conducted in iraq took place in moses. these civilians have basically been threatened by those airstrikes. meanwhile, isis has a better themselves and the local population. juan: i want to ask about that. you've investigated how isil did it deliberate in batting in the population, especially through marriage. could you talk about that? >> one of the key sort of ways in which they would map out a local population is to find families that were important in towns and cities across iraq. then work out ways to marry into those families impossible. i saw this happen in many towns in and around mosul where isis had found locals who either had sources of profit who were key members of the community and if they felt they could not turn
them, they might kill them. if they felt they could marry into them, they would take that option. you also have the look at the actual geography of what is happening. isis lived so close to ordinary civilians, and residential communities. id factoriesat up and homes inside communities. they would set up communications hubs and facilities inside homes. they would set up red houses for isis fighters. essentially, you have a number of what the military or the coalition or even the iraqi air force might consider legitimate targets right next to civilian homes. this expectation that civilians could ever sort of remove themselves from their presence is really unrealistic. there is really no way for them to avoid that proximity. amy: what exactly was the u.s. involvement in mosul? >> in the air campaign? quite unprecedented. the u.s. has been in charge of this coalition that has been
bombing mosul. they also have a land component that is involved in working very closely with iraqi forces and with peshmerga forces. what you have seen over the last several months, the last nine month of this campaign, is incredibly close collaboration, a lot of training, and working very closely with allied forces in that area. now, we have heard of some deaths of u.s. servicemen in iraq and part of the fight, people who been quite close to areas of the battle are not necessarily on the most front lines of what is happening right now. this is where iraqi forces have sustained huge losses, really incredle, many of them say to me that they have never had this level of destruction for this more thanght in the 10 years that iraq has sort of been a hub for this constant violence. so you're seeing a u.s. role in terms of organizing, in terms of
facilitating these airstrikes, in terms of closely collaborating to coordinate different types of attacks. it is deeply intertwined. with the air force in the military and with others, that are part of this coalition will to you, is this is iraqi-led, but there is clearly -- i have been to towns and cities that shia militias had tried to retake. shia militias do not get u.s. or coalition air support. i saw these militias try and fail. when the peshmerga, the kurdish forces of the coalition does provide air support for, tried to retake it, and air support would be provided. you immediately saw those cities and towns fall. while some of these victories are often portrayed as the work of local forces, you can't deny the role that the coalition and its air support, many of which have b-52 bombers and large scale aerial assaults, have
played in retaking those. largewhat about the deborah people's imprisoned and detained across the country for their connection to isis? >> one of the things we rarely hear talked about is after a city or town is retaken, the men and women of that village or town are separated. the women are often cleared quickly and the men are put through a vetting process to see whether or not they had links to isis. or to insurgents. others are interviewed. essentially, they compile a list of names and check the list of names for these men. if they are not cleared, these men are detained. we assume thousands amended tame. after a city was retaken, thousands of men were put in prison and some have not yet then released. even though they have not necessarily been found guilty of having any links to isis. at the question remains. what you have essentially are thousands of men in cities and towns that recently have an liberated still imprisoned while their families are waiting for them to be released.
sometimes they are told that if they pay a bribe they can see their husbands or brothers released from prison, their sons released from prison. factors huge problem. mosul is a much larger city than any of these other towns. the idea of rounding up the men and women and putting all of them and imprison or putting them through a vetting process like that is a lot harder in an area still being fight. what we are likely to see in the weeks and months to come come who was involved with isis, who collaborated. and the possibility for revenge driven motivations and naming people as a means for detention. juan: just to follow up as of the image and about the lack of support for the shia militia, what is the status of the relations between the shia and iraq and within the the major part of the problem, the government being able to form and function in the early years of the u.s. invasion? >> i want to be clear there are
many kinds of shia militias. there are some that were --bably the most failure that we are probably the most familiar with. militias like hezbollah and others have been accused of rampant human rights violations for which there is widespread evidence. then there are militias that are more closely aligned with the clerical establishment. oldestgest and most cities for shia in iraq, those are often aligned to the clerical establishment and will also have close relations with the iraqi government, trained by the iraqi government. there is a distinction in these two different kinds of groups of militias in terms of human rights abuses. the latter category has had better relations with different kinds of iraqi forces and iraqi groups. of name for these shia militias as a whole, also
have a component of -- a component of the so-called -- sunni tribal militias that are developed. some have quite good relations with some of the shia militias in these areas. i have talked to many people, for example, and towns and areas south of mosul, that shia militias are camped out in locals are incredibly afraid. one of the things most residents talked about is the fear of those militias coming into mosul after this liberation is over. they have kind of been held back to some extent. but to have them come in and wage the same kind of devastation you have seen in other liberated cities and the threat posed to these mosul residents hasn't envisioning this idea further own militias, their own military rule. what you see is a tit-for-tat cycle of violence that could ensue for years to come. amy: a with a follow-up on the question of detention. in 2014, former guantanamo prisoner mozzam begg said the
use of torture by the u.s. helped fuel the rise of the islamic state. this is part of what he said. the dungeonsorn in of abu ghraib, of the iraqi prisons that were under u.s. occupation and that is where this hatred and animosity has festered. what we found is a situation dick cheney said we have to operate in the dark side, what he did not say was what was going to be the consequence of that torture. to what youes understand about torture and also what does it mean to say isis has been routed from mosul? what kind of response will there be from the people and other groups that could form, not to mention isis reconstituting? >> with respect to the role of torture and the rise of isis, what i have often found in studying the demographics of isis members is that many of them, a large percentage of
them, were retained in the early years after 2000 three. rounded up by police forces and oftentimes beaten, tortured, and other allegations that come from their family members as part of the reason for why they ultimately joined -- they may have been a part of anti-u.s. resistance groups at the time, but why this sort of threat evolved into what isis is today. it played a critical role, no doubt about that. their ability to galvanize the local populations, not just in thinking about fighters themselves, but in garnering support from local populations in the cities and towns that isis took over, detention played a huge role in that. in a city like ramadi, one of , one ofsort of protests the issues was the fact that women have been detained. people don't talk about this with respect to the rise of isis and it's sort of hold on his populations, but it has played a major role. with respect to the second question, mosul residents and
what we might expect to see to come. we can largely expect to see a lot of revenge-driven violence. so individuals who are accused of collaboration -- not necessarily of being a fighter, but of having operated a restaurant or operating a business that isis members frequented often may result in their being named. we will also likely see the demolished man of homes -- the demolition of homes in which isis members formerly lived. you will likely see a lot of violence in the years to come that comes down to exactly what we were talking about, which is who rules, what are these deep divisions that led to the rise of isis taking over these towns and cities, this resentment toward the national government? what happens next? do they get their own sort of -- a bigger stake in the government? do they have more of a say or will they try to develop their own mechanisms? those places that are
still isis strongholds and how isis came to be so strong like -- line >> it was the site of major protests incidents in 2013. one of which resulted in the killing of more than 100 men that were part of the sit in. footage from several 2013 sit in went viral across iraq. so in places like ramadi and in fallujah, that footage was many of the reasons locals came to protest. as a means to ultimately take over those towns and cities. in the northern region, both of these cities are still isis strongholds and they're going to be some of the most difficult to retake. they've been the size of some of the most of a standing airstrikes. widespread, for example, in 2015, there was an industrial district that was hit by an
tax breaks that exxon mobil and chevron and other while corporations benefit from. on the whole, we're talking about huge amount of government support for fossil for production. while it is excellent the other g20 leaders put donald trump in inorner and became the g 19 santa monica's agreement, it is not enough to send we're not trump when it comes to climate change. not enough to -- these leaders have to be putting their money where their mouths are. juan: could you give us some specifics of how these supports work, some of the most egregious examples you found in your
report? >> there are public finance for coal-fired power plants. most of the finance and the report's international finance. so many coming from u.s. or japanese or chinese public finance institution supporting coal-fired power plants around the world. we have also looked at oil and it isnance and found nearly half of all public finance for energy provided by g20 governments. it works all others. especially into things like liquefied natural gas. we are seeing an increase in this public finance. with20 government, even trump in their -- the g20 leaders, even in the climate inergy action plan with trump, agreed they called natural gas a clean fuel, which is circling is not. that is something we want to point out. these fossil fuels and public
investment of also feels aren't at all consistent with the aims outlined in the pairs agreement, which all of these g20 leaders -- about what to ask happened after the g20 summit when secretary of state rex tillerson flew to istanbul, turkey, to receive the world petroleum commerce lifetime achievement award in recognition of his outstanding contribution to the oil and gas industry. meanwhile, tillerson could soon be called to testify about a separate email account he used for years to discuss global warming while he served as ceo of exxonmobil. that's according to the associated press, which reports that new york attorney general eric schneiderman is prepared to question tillerson as part of his probe into whether exxon misled its investors about the impact of climate change. those of separate you know, he went under a separate name, wayne tracker. during his senate hearing in january, tillerson refused to answer questions about exxon's history of denying the science of climate change, telling
senators that scientific literature on climate change is "inconclusive." he was asked about those reports by virginia democrat tim kaine. , promotingnclusions and funding climate science denial despite its internal awareness of the reality of climate change during your tenure with the company, true or false? no longer, since i'm with exxonmobil, i'm in no position to speak on their behalf. the question would have to be put to them. >> do you lack the knowledge to answer my question or are you refusing to answer my question? >> a little of both. [laughter] time believingd you lack the knowledge to answer my question. amy: so that was tim kaine questioning rex tillerson. he just received a lifetime achievement award in turkey. certainly, the u.s. was isolated and g20 when it came to trump having pulled out of the climate
accord. but you are making this your point,, are you saying are the other countries any better? if so, what countries do you think are taking the right path when it comes to climate change? >> look him i think a lot of these other countries are better in word, if not yet in deed. it is important, butt is also a crisis of immense proportions. we can't just be talking about taking climate action anymore. we have to be taking climate action. even germany's government, with chancellor merkel at the helm, has been providing more finance to fossil fueled and clean energy. these are countries were justin merkel, thatla lofty rhetoric about climate change, he other public finance is still, the bulk of it is going into fossil fuels rather than clean energy. that is something that needs to change immediately. amy: and the significance of tillerson possibly being subpoenaed to testify in this
new york lawsuit? >> i think it is very significant. i think it will be interesting to see what comes out of that process if he is made to testify. we will see of wayne tracker or rex tillerson shows up on the stand. i think one thing this highlights, both the fact he's been compelled to testify potentially in this case for misleading investors about the realities and risks of climate change, but also his receiving this award for lifetime achievement for his work in the petroleum industry. it really lays something bear that is often under the service in the united states, which is we need to separate oil and state. this is not just a problem in the u.s., but instead of having intermediaries where we have lobbyists or campaign contributions to politicians from the oil, gas, and coal industries and the subsidies flowing back from those decision makers to those industries, now we have the oil industry in charge of large parts of the u.s. government am including foreign policy at the state department with rex tillerson.
i think that is a stark picture and something we need to address. juan: there have also been reports recently of the industry having an impact here at the state level in getting state governments to penalize folks in anitch to solar energy attempt to charge them, in effect, for being able to switch to solar energy. >> that is a big problem and something that we need to keep an eye on. there was some political backlash for politicians who tried to penalize homeowners for putting solar on their roofs in nevada recently. i think that is something state legislators and politicians should be aware of, that if they're going to try to take away the ability of consumers to use cleaner energy, that there may be a penalty at the ballot box for that. amy:, thank you for being with us, -- alex doukas, thank you for being with us, senior campaigner at oil change
amy: this is democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman with juan gonzalez. juan: we end the show today with a look at one of the most key members of the trump administration jared kushner. , donald trump's son-in-law and senior adviser is, along with trump's son donald trump jr., at the center at the center of a new "new york times" story published sunday. according to the article, trump
junior and jared kushner and trump's then-campaign chairman paul manafort, reportedly attended the meeting with russian lawyer. they met two weeks after trump won the election. christian is one of trump senior advisers and has assumed a prominent role. next guest wrote an article "does jared kushner even , know anything about the countries he's supposed to be doing diplomacy with?" amy wilentz has also written several books on haiti, including "farewell, fred voodoo: a letter from haiti," and she is wehner of the 2013 national book critics circle award. she also wrote "the rainy season: haiti --then and now." welcome to democracy now! jared kushner, what you know about him, his history, his experience, and how that
qualifies him to be the point person on foreign-policy. some are wondering whether donald trump has put him ahead of rex tillerson, the secretary of state. is trusted because he is the son-in-law and trump runs the presidency a little bit like a mom and pop business -- which is where he comes from. d, his experience, he is been sort of a dilettante outside of his business dealings so he is the zion of this real estate family, but other than that, he is just running a bunch of things that interest them. as far as foreign affairs, that is never been one of his main concerns. the trump organization is far more internationally oriented and has far more dealings as a business with foreign governments and foreign entities than does the kushner companies,
which is jared's company, which is mostly new jersey and maryland company or has been until the sort of regal marriage of jared kushner to evoke a trump. -- ivanka trump. the state department continues to be suffering from lack of appointments by the either career of officials moving up or other ambassadors being appointed. yes. trump has had a difficult time, first of all, i don't because a lot of interest -- president trump -- in appointing ambassadors. he does not have a wide reach of experts in foreign affairs who are his friends, which is a traditional method for presidents to appoint their people to ambassadorships.
and he does not have that much interest either in moving up the career officials. what happens is, a lot of countries are left wondering, who am i supposed to deal with? there is no ambassador to my country and the desk for my country in the state department is sort of empty, who do i go to in the u.s. for my country? i think one of the unfortunate element of this is not only has jared been put in charge of a lot of big portfolios, for example, china and peace in the middle east, but smaller countries are not knowing where to go. jared is less interested in them. amy: denmark approached their miss universe hoping she had a link to someone who could reach out to the white house because they just could not figure out how to do it. but let's talk more about jared kushner because, actually, his experience in being a developer
in the baltimore area, in new jersey, and jersey city, actually, you point out, does give him experience in dealing with other countries. explain how and how this actually creates a conflict of interest today. ofwell, one of the sort amusing stories about the kushner companies, when you think of them in light of gerrit's role in the theyistration, is that have been a mom-and-pop operation themselves in jersey and baltimore. they own something like 20,000 units of housing in the baltimore area. they are very aggressive landlords. they have instigated something like 550 suits against tenants. i often think this sort of makes gerrit a good envoy for the israeli palestinian situation since his company behaves, in a
sense, like the israelis in the occupied territories, pushing people out of their housing, pushing people out of the places they thought were home. that kind of gives them some experience. juan: i want to ask you -- >> further -- juan: go ahead. i'm sorry. looks further, he has had some russiance dealing in real estate deals, too, through his wife and the trump organization. so i think that also gives him a little bit more of a portfolio there. and in china. juan: i want to ask you about saudi arabia. a purely, jared has some relationships with some of the royal family in saudi arabia, how this might play out? >> so jared apparently, according to news reports, helped organize president trump's recent triumphal trip to
riyahd. he dealt with one of the many princes there. that relationship, a very young prince for secession in the onei family, one of the -- of the result of that relationship, which was apparently very cordial between jared kushner and mohammed has nowm, is that bms been made the crown prince of saudi arabia in a sort of nod to jared kushner and the trump administration. that is a big step for the saudis to take him although, i be rescinded at the end of the trump administration of they choose to do so. that is a very big deal for jared kushner. amy: you're suggesting that in saudi arabia, he decided to salm, his nephew, king
because of his relationship withan is on a larger kushner? >> one wonders of the nephew was coulted about this or whether there was prior discomfort with the nephew. we can't see inside the saudi monarchy, but, yes, this is a gesture to the trump administration. significant that his son is the one who is overseen the saudi military operations, the u.s.-backed saudi military operations in yemen, which has devastated this country -- year old son. amy: the significance of this meeting that is big news in the united states today, the meeting of -- initiated apparently by donald trump junior, brought in paul manafort and jared kushner into this meeting with a russian
kremlin-linked lawyer? >> yes, well, there are several things to think about. to me, one of the most interesting things about this meeting other than the kind of suspicions that it raises about dealmaking between the thelin-linked lawyer and trump administration, is whether who does not,jr., have a job in the white house, an been more of -- been made official of the trump administration does not have a obligation to reveal. for example, if jared kushner felt he did not need to reveal the meeting with natalia veselnitskaya on a security form -- which he failed to do but now has done -- if you not been present at this meeting, we would not know about this
meeting. if he and paul manafort had not been invited by donald trump jr. , donald trump could've had this meeting with natalia veselnitskaya to discuss possible negative information this lawyer had with no knowledge of the american public or the press or the security infrastructure, and yet donald be acting inld effect as an agent of the trump administration. i think that is the most disturbing underlying thing that we have learned from this. juan: i want to ask you about this whole trend, the trump administration, as you mentioned, family operation, involving not only the son-in-law gerrit, but ivanka in these high-level meetings with key world leaders when they have absolutely no experience or no reason to be there other than they are family members. as if, he is running it he is running the trump organization.
he has moved them, effectively, some of them, out of positions and power in the organization into positions of power in the new organization -- the united states government. it has been extremely disturbing thing. you do get worried when denmark is going to miss universe to talk foreign policy to the united states government. and when you have ivanka trump serving in for her that at the g20 conference on how to help african economies so that refugees are not generated every two seconds in the terrible economies. what is she doing sitting between two jinping and theresa may at a table at the g20 conference? it is ridiculous. i think one of the things -- it is to the impression in the world that the americans are not it istalking to, that silly and not serious. amy: finally -- >> and yet, of course, they have
to be dealt with because it is the united states government and it is in charge of one of the greatest militaries in the world and yet ivanka trump is representing it at the g20. amy: amy wilentz i went to get to haiti, and issue you are covered for so long will sto that is haiti announcing it is reconstituting its military after decades. your thoughts? what's my thought is that the united nations is going to be moving out of haiti in the near future. they have had a force there for a long time. and that the tiny elite that runs the country is concerned about who will control the means of violence after the u.n. leaves. will that pop the cork off the haitian people and allow them to protest and recessed? amy: we have five seconds. this new move. amy: we want to thank you for being with us long-time nation , contributing editor and is a
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