tv Democracy Now PBS February 1, 2018 12:00pm-1:01pm PST
democracy now! test 02/01/18 02/01/18 democracy now! test 02/01/18 02/01/18 democracy now! test 02/01/18 02/01/18 democracy now! test 02/01/18 02/01/18 democracy now! test 02/01/18 02/01/18 democracy now! test 02/01/18 02/01/18 democracy now! test 02/01/18 02/01/18 [captioning made possible amy: from pacifica, this is democracy now! >> the department of justice and fbi feel this is an extraordinarily reckless step to take because the information has not been vetted. this is not about the facts. this is about an narrative that the chairman was to put out, misleading narrative, to undermine the fbi, undermine the department, and ultimately undermine bob mueller. amy: a showdown is brewing in washington as the white house prepares to release a controversial republican memo despite opposition from the fbi, the justice department, and democratic lawmakers. are trump and his republican allies trying to discredit special prosecutor robert mueller's investigation of president trump? we will get the latest.
then to afghanistan. pres. trump: our warriors in afghanistan have new rules of engagement. along with their heroic afghan partners, and military is no longer undermined by artificial timelines, and we no longer tell our enemies our plans. amy: as trump promises a new strategy in the longest u.s. war in history, we will look at why civilian casualties are soaring in afghanistan. on saturday, more than 100 people died in kabul when an ambulance packed with explosives blew up. we will go to kabul. then, is everything you think you know about depression wrong? we will speak with johann hari, author of "uncovering the real causes of depression - and the unexpected solutions." all that and more, coming up. welcome to democracy now!, democracynow.org,
the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. the fbi said wednesday it has grave concerns over president trump's plans to release a four-page document written by house intelligence committee to devin nunes, purporting to show the fbi abused its power when it began surveilling trump campaign advisor carter page in 2016 due to his dealings with russia. supporters of president trump claim the memo offers proof that the fbi's investigation was tainted by politics from the start, in part because the fbi won approval of the wiretap by citing a dossier funded by supporters of hillary clinton. the memo is expected to lay blame on the actions of deputy attorney general rod rosenstein -- the same man who is the only official with the authority to fire special prosecutor robert mueller. earlier this week, house intelligence committee republicans voted along party lines to declassify the memo, which had become a rallying cry for president trump and his supporters.
in a highly unusual statement issued wednesday, the fbi said it was "provided a limited opportunity to review this memo the day before the committee voted to release it. as expressed during our initial review, we have grave concerns about material omissions of fact that fundamentally impact the memo's accuracy." speaking wednesday, the ranking democrat on the house intelligence committee, adam schiff, echoed the concerns. >> this is not about the facts. this is about a narrative that the chairman wants to put out, misleading narrative, to undermine the fbi, undermine the department, and ultimately, undermine bob mueller. of course, the danger in all of this besides the obvious one politicizing the intelligence process, is that it's an a message to the white house that he can fire rod rosenstein or fire bob mueller and there are gop members who are so vested in his presidency that they will roll over. and that will cause a crisis of that is the message.
amy: he later said devin nunes had made material changes to a version of the memo he sent to the white house and the changes were not approved by the committee. meanwhile, "the new york times" reports that special counsel robert mueller is investigating how top trump officials worked to put forward a false version of events surrounding a meeting at trump tower the summer of 2016 between russians and senior campaign officials. according to "the times," a former spokesperson for trump's legal team, mark corallo, is planning to tell mueller about a conference call when white house communications director hope hicks said that emails about the meeting "will never get out." the statement could be viewed as contemplating obstruction of justice. the director of the centers for disease control and prevention abruptly resigned wednesday, following a report she bought shares in a tobacco company after she took the reins of the top u.s. public health agency. brenda fitzgerald's resignation came after just six months on the job
and after politico reported that she purchased up to $15,000 of shares in japan tobacco. as cdc director, fitzgerald also bought shares in pharmaceutical and healthcare companies that critics say posed potential conflicts of interest. in virginia, an amtrak train chartered by republican lawmakers crashed into a garbage truck outside charlottesville on wednesday, killing one of the truck's passengers and injuring two others. three people aboard the train were also lightly injured, including minnesota congressmember jason lewis, who was taken to a nearby hospital. the crash occurred as the lawmakers were headed to an annual republican party policy retreat in west virginia. the trump administration said wednesday it will reauthorize gps, that is temporary protected status, for syrian refugees, but said it will bar any more syrian citizens from applying to the program. tps benefits just 6900 syrians living in the u.s. the united nations says some 5.4 million people
have fled syria since 2011. the associated press reports two government officials said this will be the last time the trump administration extends tps for syrians. in recent months, the administration ended tps for as many as 250,000 salvadorans, as well as tens of thousands of haitian, nicaraguan, and sudanese immigrants. in syria, human rights groups say the civilian death toll is mounting in the northern city of afrin, where turkey's military is pursuing a bombing campaign and ground offensive against the u.s.-backed kurdish forces who control the region. on wednesday, the syrian kurdish ypg militia circulated video showing what it said was the aftermath of an attack on civilians in afrin. >> i was on the road when it was shelled. i was injured in my head and legs. do we look like soldiers? it is not a military area. i had already fled my village with my family. amy: russia's foreign ministry said wednesday the turkish offensive in afrin has killed several hundred people, including civilians.
meanwhile, the turkish offensive has left an ancient temple in the region seriously damaged. photos show the 3000-year-old site of ain dara reduced to rubble after it was hit by turkish airstrikes. in turkey, amnesty international is and him and turkish government after ordered the release of amnesty international turkey chair, then rearrested him. he was first arrested last june with 10 others and accused of supporting terrorism. if convicted, they face up to 15 years in jail. in a statement, amnesty international said -- "over the last 24 hours, we have borne witness of a travesty of justice of spectacular proportions to have been granted release, only to have the door to freedom callously slammed in his face, is devastating." the u.s. state department has designated ismail haniyeh, the head of the palestinian political party and militant group hamas, as a terrorist.
the move comes as the trump administration continues to face worldwide protest over its decision to recognize jerusalem as israel's capital, and as the u.s. slashes funding to u.n. agencies helping palestinian refugees. this is hamas spokesperson ismail radwan. >> it is clear that putting the name of ismail haniyeh on the terrorism list came at a time the targeting jerusalem, putting sanctions on, preventing aid to the you and refugee agency unwra. the u.s. administration has cast itself as an enemy of the palestinian people. it is taking the side of the zionist occupation. this shows the was a administration is working against the aspirations of free palestinian people and liberation and achieving independence. amy: in britain, the former editor of the bbc's china desk, carrie gracie, told members of parliament wednesday that the bbc is failing to abide by pay equity laws by paying men more than women. gracie recently stepped down after serving three decades at the bbc,
accusing the publicly-funded broadcaster of secretive and illegal behavior. >> we are not in the business of producing toothpaste or tires. our business is truth. if we are not prepared to look at ourselves honestly, how can we be trusted to look at anything else in our reporting? it cannot be a starting place to not deal with the facts. amy: in michigan, more women have stepped forward to say they were sexually abused by usa gymnastics team doctor larry nassar as girls. raising the number of his accusers to at least 265. this is jessica thomashow speaking at the third of nassar's sentencing hearings on wednesday. >> and jessica thomasshow. i'm 17 and a senior in high school. and victim "a" in two criminal cases. i was sexually assaulted by larry nassar
when i was nine and 12 years old. you manipulated me and my entire family. how dare you. amy: a new study finds roughly half of all u.s. veterans of the wars in iraq and afghanistan who need mental health care do not get it. the congressionally-mandated report by the national academies of sciences, engineering, and medicine finds staffing shortages and bureaucracy at the va leaves many vets unable to find treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder, substance abuse, and depression. the department of veterans affairs recently reported about 20 u.s. veterans commit suicide each day. in newark, new jersey, federal prosecutors have dropped corruption charges against democratic senator bob menendez. wednesday's decision came two weeks after the justice department initially said it would seek to retry the case after a jury deadlocked over charges last november. menendez was accused of peddling influence on behalf of new jersey ophthalmologist salomon melgen in exchange for flights on a private jet, luxury hotel stays,
and six-figure campaign contributions. senator menendez, who is running for reelection in november, has denied the charges. and in hong kong, lawmakers voted wednesday to ban the sale of ivory -- a move hailed by animal rights campaigners as a major step towards protecting elephants. this is michael lau with the world wildlife fund in hong kong. >> which show the commitment by the hong kong government to conserving african elephants. what is needed next is step up the enforcement to make sure that there will no longer be any illegal trade in the hong kong or through hong kong. amy: hong kong is the largest market for every sales. the band came one month after authorities in mainland china adopted a similar prohibition. and those are some of the headlines. this is democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. nermeen: and i'm nermeen shaikh. welcome to all of our listeners and viewers from around the country and around the world. a showdown is brewing in washington as the white house
prepares to release a controversial republican memo despite opposition from the fbi, the justice department, and democratic lawmakers. the four page memo -- written by house intelligence committee chair, republican congressmember devin nunes of california -- purports to show that the fbi abused its power when it began surveilling trump campaign advisor carter page in 2016 due to his dealings with russia. supporters of president trump claim the memo offers proof that the fbi's investigation was tainted by politics from the start, in part because the fbi won approval of the wiretap by citing a dossier funded by supporters of hillary clinton. the memo is expected to lay blame on the actions of deputy attorney general rod rosenstein, the same man who is the only official with the authority to fire special prosecutor robert mueller. amy: well, on wednesday, the fbi, which is led by trump appointee christopher wray, issued an unusual statement, fiercely critical of the imminent
release of the memo saying -- "we have grave concerns about material omissions of fact that fundamentally impact the memo's accuracy." it did on wednesday, the wrecking democrat on the house intelligence committee adam schiff, claimed in his head made "material changes" of a secret memo before sending it to the president. this comes as the white house appears to be preparing to release the memo. on tuesday night, president trump was caught on mic at the state of the union speaking with south carolina republican congressman jeff duncan. >> are you going to release the memo? pres. trump: 100%. amy: duncan asked if he was releasing the memo and president trump said 100%. amy: this is not the first time house intelligence chair david nunez has been at the center of a controversy. in april, he supposedly recused himself from investigating into russia's alleged ties to trump associates and russia's role in the 2016
u.s. election after he illegally made classified information public. this came after "the new york times" revealed white house officials had met secretly with nunes to show him classified u.s. intelligence reports detailing how trump associates were incidentally swept up in surveillance carried out by american spy agencies as they conducted foreign surveillance. nunes later walked back his recusal. amy: we're joined now by marcy wheeler, an independent journalist who covers national security and civil liberties running the website emptywheel.net. we are speaking to her in lansing, michigan. explain exactly what this memo is. this is a firestorm in washington, pitting trump's own appointee, the head of the fbi against trump himself. >> the memo purports to be a review of fisa they claim abuses,
primarily focused on a fisa warrant targeted at carter page. although the warrant was not approved until he was off the campaign. one of the ways we already know this memo is misleading because it did not target the campaign. they targeted somebody the campaign got rid of because of his ties with russia. so that is the first thing. and it focuses -- it is reportedly emphasizing the fact that christopher steele dossier, which was that part of the dossier, in opposition dossier, was paid for by the dnc and hillary clinton's campaign, and it complains that that dossier was one of the things used to get the fisa warrant against carter page. we can assumes a downplays of the things that we already no about. in 2013, carter page was being recruited by russians.
the fbi was tracking him because they were worried about his ties with the russians. we assume there are number of other sources for the fisa application. those are all going to be downplayed in a four-page memo. nermeen: marcy wheeler, can you explain a little more why the republicans and trump want this memo released? >> they're going to find an excuse to fire rod rosenstein, but even there, there's a problem. rod rosenstein, there actually completing reports about when the last of these applications was submitted. it was either march or april. "the new york times" reported it was april after rod rosenstein became deputy attorney general unable 26. but if that is the case, regardless of which it is, it means that two applications using the dossier had already been approved by the fisa court.
one of which came after the dossier was made public. so either rod rosenstein, all he did was sign the last application that has already gone through approval processes in march when he came in as deputy attorney general, or he wasn't involved at all. but they are searching for some excuse that they will be of little remove rod rosenstein, therefore, get to robert mueller. amy: explain exactly what that last part is. why they want to get rid of rod rosenstein and how that will get them to robert mueller. >> the only way you can remove mueller is if his supervisor -- not the only way, but the only way that isn't going to cause a huge firestorm -- is if his supervisor finds mueller to have conducted unethical acts or engaged in proper activities. rosenstein is his supervisor because jeff sessions is recused.
so you need to remove rosenstein and then put in somebody who would be willing to fire mueller. people talk about the epa director. knowing things, for example, the third in command at doj would do it. so you have got to remove rod rosenstein and then put in some partisan hack who would be willing to fire some of you who by all accounts is is just engaging in a typical investigation. nermeen: why, marcie, did the democrats not want this memo released? >> well, they argue two things. one, that it is misleading. as i laid out, it is going to misrepresent rod rosenstein's involvement and downplay the fact this application -- that applications against carter page were approved on at least two occasions before rod rosenstein got involved. it will downplay and misrepresent essentially
this dossier played in the application. so that is one reason the democrats don't want it released. another reason they don't want it released is they say that the memo itself exposes sources and methods. normally come everybody on house intelligence committee kind of goes overboard protecting sources and methods, protecting the secrets that they learn in the course of their business. and in this case, nunes has thrown that out the window. he is using, by the way, to release it, a kind of illegal measure that congress has available to them to release classified information. it was discussed with the release of the torture report. it would have been appropriate to use it with the torture report. in this case, it is probably not an appropriate use of the law. but it has not been used. it is not used because normally
when the intelligence committees want to release something, they go in a back and forth discussion with the underlying -- agencies, in this case, the fbi. the fbi is also trying to protect, quite clear from the doj last week other assets. so probably nsa and cia. and also information from foreign partners. there was a report last week were the dutch intelligence was making it quite clear that they are less and less comfortable sharing information with the trump administration. that is one of the reasons you don't release underlying sources and methods because we cannot partner with foreign partners as well. there is one other i was a illegitimate reason not to release the memo and that is because fisa, the law that allows government to target people in the u.s. as suspected spies rather than as suspected criminals, it has been in place for 40 years. when it was passed, commerce envisioned
that sometimes defendants who were collected on using fisa warrants would get to review the underlying dossier, whether the application was fair. but no defendant in history has ever gotten that review. nunes did not care about that until carter page was targeted. but it is something that i think congress should revisit, should have revisited, by the way, in the 702 reauthorization that was just press a few weeks ago. a doj also does not want this underlying report released because it will make it easier for defendants to see what doj uses when it is targeting people with fisa warrants. amy: yesterday, sarah huckabee sanders, said she didn't believe that president trump had read the memo that he said he's going to release when he was caught off microphone at the state of the union talking to a congressman.
and i wanted to ask you about the bigger issue here. it seems like the tables are turned. the democrats at least progressives have been fears questioners of the fbi over the decades. and about the national security state going over -- overreaching, to say the least. now the tables are turned in the trump administration is going against the fbi and the justice department. what do you make of this in the long run, whether this will limit the intelligence committee's oversight of things and overreach of things? >> i would not go overboard in saying the democrats have always been critical of the fbi. amy: i meant to say progressives. >> progressives, that's fair. but as i mentioned, it was just a couple of weeks ago when congress passed the title vii reauthorization,
another part of fisa. and all of the same people pushing to get this memo out, starting with devin nunes, trey gowdy, the entire republican side on the house intelligence committee, they all pushed to have fisa reauthorize without any reform. down the road, i will point out the memo they released does not address a fisa problem that probably did affect carter page. they are not paying attention to fisa closely enough to talk about the thing that probably did affect carter page badly. they don't care that, for example, the government can collect tour traffic, and then we doubt which americans are not engaged in crime and get rid of it but keep the ones that are engaged in crimes. they don't care the fbi can access communications collected under 702 warrantlessly without any suspicion at all.
the people who are pushing for this to come out really do not care at all and do not, cannot believe the fbi is an abusive agency because if they did, they would not have reauthorized this legislation. this is exclusively about trying to invent a reason to discredit the mueller investigation. will it affect oversight going forward? i think one thing that has been made clear with this health fiasco is that the house intelligence committee does not work. great. i hope that republicans will be so embarrassed by the time this is done that they cooperate with people -- with good government reformers who have been saying for a long time there are ways to improve the house intelligence committee and make it functional such that devin nunes cannot take it hostage and turn it into a mode of instruction for the president. amy: i meant to say aggressive activists went again
to be concerned about fbi and intelligence and nsa overreach. you mentioned trey gowdy. yesterday, the republican congressman from south carolina, a german house oversight committee, announced he is not going to seek reelection. he was instrumental in crafting the nunes memo. can you talk about the significance of him leaving congress, leader in the benghazi investigation, attacking hillary clinton, etc. >> trey gowdy, when he is in front of a camera, is one of the most blustery republican partisans. but you can help even, for example, from the carter page transcript, his interview with house intelligence committee, behind closed doors, he actually is a confident prosecutor. he has a background in that. he can hammer republican witnesses. what is interesting about trey gowdy, the underlying material --
this is another complaint the democrats have. the only people who have read the underlying materials are adam schiff, four staffers, and trey gowdy. it would have been devin nunes, but i believe because of the refusal you talked about earlier, had trey gowdy do it instead. the only people who have actually looked at the underlying materials include trey gowdy. he did not write the memo. nunes' staffers did. on sunday, i'm one of the sunday shows, i think it was a fox show, trey gowdy said, you know, this memo should come out. it is important, but my side should not use it to undermine the mueller investigation. and the reason the game is that what is not being seen about the investigation is there a hole counterintelligence side -- there is a whole counter intelligence had investigating how the russians tempered in our election. according to trey gowdy, has seen these underlying documents,
he thinks that is an important and legitimate investigation. now, we don't know fully what he decided not to run. he did cite yesterday that he is sick of politics. but what is interesting is, yesterday morning, he was still fundraising. so as of yesterday morning, he was still planning on running. there are also reports that don mcgann, who is the white house counsel who has been in the sort of obstructive role for trump as well, was discussing with trey gowdy a position on the fourth circuit as a circuit court judge -- which is something gowdy has been interested in in the past and he turned that down. so gowdy, even though he is this firebreathing partisan hack -- you go back to the benghazi case -- he seems to have seen something in the underlying investigation that troubles him that his republican partisan colleagues are not paying attention to. so gowdy may surprise us going forward,
but i do think that that is an interesting development yesterday, that the one guy on the house intelligence committee who has seen the underlying intelligence has decided to get out of the republican partisan hack rat race. amy: we just have 30 seconds, but the whole issue of whether robert mueller will be interviewing president trump and president trump saying is very willing to testify under oath and in his lawyer walking that back? the significance of this? >> people should remember that truck is not going to be indicted for obstruction. you might be named as an unindicted co-conspirator, but i mean, he is unlikely to be indicted for anything because he is the sitting president. but it is possible that, for example, hope hicks, there was a report on her, possibly instructing justice last not. she could be indicted or forced into a plea deal on obstruction
and trump could be named in that. i think that is what is really going on. his lawyers don't want trump to sit for an interview because he cannot tell the truth for more than 10 minutes. i don't blame them, but that back and forth is going to go on for some time and a pressure to the president. amy: marcy wheeler, thank you for being with us, independent journalist covering national security and civil liberties. runs the website emptywheel.net. we will link to your latest pieces, the latest one "byron york confirms that many names and sources implicated carter page as an agent of a foreign power." speaking to us from grand rapids, michigan. this is democracy now! when we come back, we go to kabul, afghanistan. stay with us. [music break] amy: this is democracy now!,
democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman with nermeen shaikh. nermeen: on tuesday night, president trump became the third president in a room to attempt to put a positive been on the war in afghanistan. the longest war in u.s. history. pres. trump: our warriors in afghanistan have new rules of engagement.
along with their heroic afghan partners, our military is no longer undermined by artificial timelines and we no longer tell our enemies our plans. amy: five years earlier, president barack obama predicted in his 2013 state of the union that the war would soon be over. pres. obama: our forces will move into a support role while afghan security forces take the lead. tonight, i can announce that over the next year, another 34,000 american troops will come home from afghanistan. this drawdown will continue. and by the end of next year, our war in afghanistan will be over. amy: and back in 2005, president george w. bush used his state of the union, i think it was 2006, to praise afghanistan for building a "new democracy."
president bush: we remain on the offensive in afghanistan or if i'm president a national symbol are fighting terror while building the institutions of a new democracy. nermeen: more than 16 years after the u.s. war in afghanistan began, the country remains in a state of crisis. on saturday, more than 100 people died in kabul when an ambulance packed with explosives blew up. then on monday, islamic state militants carried out an early morning attack on a military academy in the western outskirts of the capital of kabul, killing at least 11 troops and wounding 16. amy: for more, we go to kabul, afghanistan, were we are joined by investigative reporter may jeong. her most recent piece for the intercept is titled, "losing sight: a 4-year-old girl was the sole survivor of a u.s. drone strike in afghanistan. then she disappeared." jeong is also a logan nonfiction fellow at the carey institute for global good and a visiting scholar at new york university's arthur l. carter journalism institute. it is great to have you with us, joining us from kabul.
first, respond to this incredibly bloody week in afghanistan, in the ring of steel in kabul. >> yes, as you mentioned, it has been a terrible, terrible winter for afghanistan. just before coming on air, i was talking to my colleagues about the bloodbath that has been couple for the last couple of weeks. apart from the massive attack on the ministry interior road in the military academy, there has also been intercontinental hotel that has been attacked and nearby city in jalalabad, save the children office, in ngo there was attacked as well. there is a real sense of a crescendo of violence and helplessness among the people about the lack of options that are provided for them. and also massive grievance and resentment most of today,
there was a protest in front of the embassy in pakistan here in kabul, organized by civil society members who wanted to protest the absence of lack of action on the part of the afghan government -- which is exactly the message the taliban is hoping to send. the spectacular attacks, they are, in a way, they could be pure disasters for the insurgent group. most of the people who die are civilians. but they do this because the message they want to send to the public is telling them that your government cannot protect you. it has become this sick popularity contest between the afghan state and various insurgent groups from the taliban, isis, haqqani being among the big ones. but the other note you detect among the people here is that for foreigners watching from abroad, this week seems very bloody but this kind of atrocity happens on a daily basis
in promises that we have no access to, nevermind the fact the war has -- the nato war as we call it here, has been ongoing for 17 years. even before that, the civil war, the russian soviet occupation. people have been living with this kind of conflict. it began with a -- there's a nato helicopter overhead so you might not be able to hear me. it is been it continuation of conflict in very's iterations. with that, various coping mechanisms, one of which is humor. my colleague and i were talking about how at this protest earlier, people -- he can be confused with the national fog of country. there were some protesters mistakenly burning and nigerian flag. there was a rare respite from this sort of moment of unexpected humor. but that is what people do here to get by
because otherwise, taking everything, really internalizing everything that happens, i think that would be insanity for a lot of people. nermeen: you talked about the fact this protest took place outside the pakistani embassy in the protesters were burning the pakistani flag. can you talk about the role of pakistan, the pakistani state, and military intelligence services in afghanistan, in particular, their relationship to two of the three groups that you mentioned, insurgent groups, the taliban, the haqqani network? >> of course. it is widely established now that they have their safe havens in pakistan, which is the way they have managed to operate, consolidate their power and also arrange for funding streams. it is a very contentious controversial topic here.
president ashraf ghani when he first it political power, hughes a lot of his political capital to try to negotiate peace by going straight to islamabad. but that did not amount to anything. but the reason why he did that was because he, like the head of state before him, understood that if you want to have a peace settlement with the taliban, it is not just a particular insurgent group that you're dealing with, it is all of these other stakeholders of the conflict that are at play. we often talk about the war in afghanistan is a proxy war was the who are the proxies? afghanistan, pakistan. who are their backers? the obvious one for the afghan government right now is the american government. the other side for the taliban, it is the government of pakistan. president donald trump has been making a lot of statements
about how he wants to cut funding to force the pakistan state to source them -- force them into submission. the american policy toward pakistan, of course, also afghanistan, has been very inconsistent. so it is no wonder the actors do not respond to these incentive structures that are presented to them. amy: let's talk about the u.s. role. you just did a very important piece called "losing sight: a 4-year-old girl was the sole survivor of a u.s. drone strike in afghanistan. then she disappeared." talk about this story and its significance for what the u.s. is doing there. >> i think the for thing to know about this story, is about a specific drone strike, just one of many. this particular strike happened in september 2013.
there was a family traveling in a pickup truck from a provincial capital of kunar province, which is to the east of kabul which is where alone survivor was shot -- where "lone survivor" was shot. they set off mid-day. they were on their way to where a majority of the family members were from and along the way, this truck was hit by what the american military calls the precision strike. everyone died except for a four-year-old girl who was then taken to a hospital in another town called jalalabad and then to a military hospital in kabul.
president karzai, who was the head of state at the time who had been increasingly vocal about his anger and discontent at the preponderance of civilian casualties incurred by nato and the foreign troops, which you go see her. in remarks publicly he had, he would be volcker is one of the many reasons why he did not want to sign this think all the bilateral securities agreement. it is the memorandum of understanding that allows [indiscernible] the negotiation for the bsa was ongoing in 2013 and 2014. when he was often asked about his recalcitrance for signing the agreement, he would mention this girl aisha as well as many other instances of wedding parties being bombed, houses being bombed, mothers and fathers taking their children to school being bombed. the countless attacks that have happened
on civilians during the war here. my investigation really try to bore into what happens to just one of them. the human cost of this policy that we call "clean," i mean, we have all of these words like being a precision strike or the drums are meant to be the option to the bloody mess of ground battle. it really, as i mentioned in the piece, we don't -- at times you don't really know who he killed. nermeen: a lot of people suggest, though, u.s. and other nato ground troops are necessary in afghanistan to maintain a modicum of security. a bbc study found yesterday, which was just published yesterday, found that the taliban and are now operative in 70% of the country, which is, of course, far more than was the case in 2014.
could you respond to that? do you think despite these casualties, the girl aisha whom you mentioned, a u.s. presence is necessary in afghanistan as some suggest? >> absolutely not. the places where people suffer the most are uncontested areas where there are still battles between government forces and various insurgent groups. you mentioned 70% of the country is under taliban control. areas that are safely with one set of the other are not being fought over, therefore, there is no active battle there. i think that is something we forget. over the past 17 years, a lot of money has been spent on gender initiatives and promoting women's rights and children's rights, capacity building exercises, and all of this stuff. it is all very good, but i think what people often forget is even
before we can get to the part of it being enlightened or whatever, most afghans, their primary desire is to live and not to die. and for that to happen, the war needs to end. why is the war continuing? because there's no understanding that we are in a stalemate of both sides are suffering. both sides cling onto this delusional fiction that a military victory is possible and president trump still talking about the fact -- he said still subscribes to this insane logic that what we need to do is advance the war so we negotiate from advantage. i mean, what is the definition of insanity? doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. the state of the union speeches are tragic for the fact iterations of the one that is, for when it comes to afghanistan. nothing has changed. what makes us think this surge that president trump has allowed
under general mattis to go ahead with, that is going to make any difference? under president obama, we had 140,000 soldiers and that did not change anything. amy: we are going to lose the satellite, but i want to ask about the meeting that president trump had with members of the u.s. security council rejecting the idea of peace talks with the taliban. what is your assessment of this? >> it is a real shame. is seven's me deeply. there's a certain momentum built with these peace talks. the fact we have just whatever you feel about the taliban, i mean, i think we can all agree that having dialogue is a good thing. a lot of resources have been spent trying to get people onto the negotiating table. and for head of state of a major country that is a big player in the war to come out saying me you know, denouncing the whole process, really takes back the prospects for peace by many, many years.
people don't talk -- amy: we just lost the satellite, but that is may jeong, investigative reporter based in kabul, afghanistan. her most recent piece for the intercept called "losing sight: a 4-year-old girl was the sole survivor of a u.s. drone strike in afghanistan. then she disappeared." this is democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman with nermeen shaikh. when we come back, a new book is out called "lost connections." we will look at the issue of antidepressants, depression, and the best treatments for very commonalities. stay with us. [music break] amy: this
according to the national institute of health, the disease is widely prevalent -- almost 20% of adult americans suffer from mental illness every year. anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the u.s., affecting 40 million adults in the u.s., or 18% of the population every year. about 7% of adult americans suffer from major depression. according to the world health organization, the u.s. is one of the most depressed countries in the world, and globally depression is the leading cause of ill health and disability. depression is also the major contributor to suicide deaths worldwide, which number close to 800,000 per year. the national alliance on mental illness finds that more than half of americans don't receive treatment for mental illness. amy: well, we turn now to a new book that argues the people who do receive treatment for depression and anxiety are not being treated adequately. author johann hari says that too much emphasis
is placed on brain chemistry to the exclusion of equally -- and often more -- important environmental causes. he points specifically to what he calls "junk values," writing -- "junk food has taken over our diets, and it is making millions of people physically sick. a growing body of scientific evidence suggests that something similar is happening with our minds -- that they have become dominated by junk values, and this is making us mentally sick, triggering soaring rates of depression and anxiety." johann hari has experienced mental illness himself. found that he was still depressed after having been on anti-depressants for well over a decade, starting when he was a teenager. in his research, johann hari found his experience was far from unique and that a staggering 65% to 80% of people on antidepressants continue to be depressed. johann hari joins us now from washington, d.c.. he is a writer and journalist. his book on depression is just out is called "lost connections: uncovering the real causes of depression
- and the unexpected solutions." his previous book, "chasing the scream: the first and last days of the war on drugs." welcome back to democracy now! let's start with the title. i think that very much conveys what your underlying thesis is. "lost connections." >> everyone watching this knows that they have natural physical needs, right? you need food, water, clean air, warmth. effective as a way for me, things with a real wrong real fast. one thing i learned on the big journey i did for this book over 40,000 miles into being the best experts in the world and what causes depression and exciting and what solves them is equally strong evidence we have natural psychological needs. you have to feel you belong. you have to feel your life has meaning and purpose. you have got to feel that people see you and value you. you've got to feel that you have a future that makes sense. our culture is less and less and meeting people's deep drilling psychological -- underlying psychological needs.
they can sound weird in the abstract. i noticed lots of the people i know who are depressed and anxious, their depression and anxiety focuses around her work. i started looking at the evidence. how do people feel about our work? gallup did the best research. 30% of us like our work most of the time for some 60% kind of hate it. 24% hate their work. think about that. 80% of people don't like the thing they're doing. most oof their waking lives. could that have a relationship to our mental health crisis? i discovered an australian who discovered what makes you depressed at work. if you go to work and you feel you have low or no control, you are significantly more likely to become depressed or even more likely to have a heart attack. that is because human beings have a light -- and need to feel they have meaning.
i believe strongly chemical antidepressants have a real role that give some relief to some people. but i started to think, what would be the antidepressants of that problem which is so prevalent in our culture? in baltimore, i met a woman named meredith. she used to go to bed every sunday night sick with anxiety about her work. so one day, with her husband josh, she did a bold thing. josh had worked in bike stores since he was a teenager. in secure, controlled work. josh and meredith decided to set up a bike store with her colleague that ran on a different principle. it is a democratic operative. you might well call it democracy now. they don't have a boss. they make all of the big decisions together. they share the profits. they share the good tasks and less good tasks, so no one gets stuck with the more depressing task. one thing that is so fascinating in spending time with them is how many of them talked about how depressed and anxious
they had been previously in their workplace, but not now. that is completely in line with the professor's findings. we have a society that is putting in place all sorts of structures that are causing depression and anxiety yet we tell people -- i learned about these nine causes of depression and exciting for which their scientific evidence. to our biological and the rest are in the way we live. if you are depressed, if you are anxious, you're not crazy. you're not a machine with broken parts. you are human being with unmet needs. there ways we can change our society that we can meet those needs and you won't be in so much pain. nermeen: i want to ask about some of the criticism your book has received. in a guardian piece headlined "as a psychiatrist, i know that johann hari is wrong to cast out on antidepressants."
writing -- she disputes the argument in your book that depression and anxiety are treated only as a chemical problem by the psychiatric community for step she goes on to say -- "you're are suggesting that prescribing antidepressants to a patient who suffers from clinical depression is the equivalent of treating them as a machine with malfunctioning parts is wrong, unhelpful, and even dangerous." can you respond to that? and specifically, the claim that she makes that your book demonizes an illness that is already demonized and stigmatized
and that people are ready has a tape to go on antidepressants precisely because of this stigma? >> the individual admits they've not read the book. in the book i'm very clear, i want to expand the menu of options for people. i don't to take anything off the menu. some of the people i love most take chemical antidepressants. they do give some relief to some people, which is really valuable. they don't solve the problem is that this isn't just my position. this is the position of the world health organization. it explains mental health is produced socially. it is a social indicator and you need social and individual solutions. so we need to be of a have a serious conversation about these causes that doesn't just to send into ridiculous -- of course, i'm not going to say not to take chemical antidepressants. i took them for years. we have to talk about the wider context and how we deal with it.
one thing that we tangible way i think about this -- changed the way think about this, a south african psychiatrist explained to me he was in cambodia when they first introduced chemical antidepressants. the doctors did not know what they were so he explained. they said, we don't need them. we have antidepressants. a farmer worked in the restaurant and got blown up by a landmine. they gave him an artificial limb to get him back to work the fields. he started to become very depressed. apparently it is painful to work underwater with the artificial limb. he was crying all day. they gave him an antidepressant. he said, what did you do? they said, we sat with him and listened to his problems and realized his pain made sense. we think if we bought him a cow, he could become a dairy farmer and he would not be depressed. they bought him a cow. his crying stopped. what those cambodia doctors knew intuitively was with the world health organization's been trying to tell us for years,
antidepressants made sense. i think this is an interesting experiment that demonstrate this powerfully. what we have done is tell people a biological story, what my doctor told me. most of the causes are in the way we live. i think that is more destigmatize and. it is not you. you're surrounded by loads of people who feel this way. you feel this way -- the doctor, to be fair to him, this man, said he agrees with me on the social causes and we need to deal with these deeper social causes. we have been in this pessimism where we think we cannot change anything. there are loads of experience and have demonstrated that we can powerfully change. one example, in canada in the 1970's, they did an experiment and chose a town randomly. they get huge amount of people a guaranteed basic
income equivalent of $15,000 year. they said, we're going to give you this in monthly installments. you don't have to do anything in return for it and there's nothing you can do that means we will take it away. they followed what happened over the next for years. the most powerful thing to me is, there's a massive fall in depression and anxiety that was so severe people had to be hospitalized. it fell by 9%. that tells us something. it tells us financial insecurity in your liberalism that you guys documents are brilliantly is causing a lot of that depression and anxiety, especially it is empowering to tell people, your depression is caused by these factors in the way we are living, not that your brain is broken. we are biological beings, but that is not a primary drive here. there are solutions that we can band together and fight for. that is much more empowering. it is not -- amy: johann hari, british prime minister theresa may appointed a mr. for loneliness
following a year-long investigation which found 40% of the population and the u.k. often or always feel lonely. you talk about the connection between loneliness and depression that go you have 20 seconds. >> with the lonely society there has been. there are doctors that started prescribing lonely people to take part in voluntary gardening groups. that is twice as effective as chemical antidepressants in reducing depression. we have to go to the nine causes for depression and there are seven different antidepressants that we should be utilizing alongside chemical antidepressants for some amy: we will do part two and post it online at democracynow.org. johann hari's new book is called "lost connections: uncovering the real causes of depression - and the unexpected solutions." that does it for our broadcast. we're hiring a full-time his fellow. submit your application by february 5 to democracynow.org. >> democracy now! is looking for feedback from people who appreciate the closed captioning. e-mail your comments to email@example.com
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