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tv   BBC World News America  PBS  October 8, 2018 2:30pm-3:00pm PDT

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>> this is "bbc world news america." >> funding of this presentation is made possible by the freeman foundati and kovler foundation, pursuing solutions for america's neglected needs. >> how do we shape our tomorrow? it starts with a vision. we see its ideal form in our mind, and then we begin to chisel. we strip away everything that stands in the way to reveal new possilities.
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at purepoint financial, we have designed our modern approach to banking around you -- yourlans, your goals, your dreams. your tomorrow is purepoint l. >> and now, "bbc world news." nelaura: this is "bbc worl america." reporting from washington, i am laura trevelyan. fears grow about t fate of saudi journalist jamal khashoggi. he was last seen at the saudi consulate in istanbul. a dire warning from the world's top scientists. dramatic action is neesad now to the world from climate catastrophe. plus, writing to president a. from hardships to homework, andicans put it on paper, hundreds received a personal reply.
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laura: welcome to our viewers on public television in america and around the globe. tonight the mysterious disappearance of saudi journalist jamal khashs raising questions across the middle east and here in washington, d.c. the commentator who was critical of saudi arabia's yo hg crown prin vanished. what we do know is he was last seen entering the saudi consulate in istanbul on tuesday to obtain routine paperwork. he has not been seen since, and turkish officials say he may have been murdered. president erdogan is demanding answers, but saudi arabia dees being part of any f time ago, president trump expressed his concern. earlier i spoke to journalist robin wright, who has known mr.e khashoggi fodes. robin, you write for "the new yorker." did jamal kshoggi tell you he felt his life was in injured? robin: often, and in fact, the
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last conversation i had with him was in august, and he saidhe saudis wanted him out of the picture. at the time i thought he exaggerating dangerous because he had been in exile over a year in washington, and the dangers seemed kind of unrealistic. it turned out that he may have been more correct than he realized. laura: just how crital was the -- heth osaudi government and especially the young crown prince, robin? robin: you know, jamal was in w maays a reluctant dissident. he had long supported the, monarc had been an advisor to the government. but i think he -- as he told me, atcame increasingly concerned about the autocric rule of crown prince mohammed, the heir apparent to the throne, the real power behind the throne. he was under enormous pressure.
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he was ordered not to get on twitter, he was silenced repeatedly. he opted the arrest of some of his friends to leave the country entirely. laura: do you think this u.s. administration will pressurize get saudi government t answers? robin: i fear not. saudi arabia is the centerpiece sf the trump administration' licy in the middle east. it was his first destination when he went on his first foreign trip. he was received with pomp and. ceremo saudi arabia is today very important to an eventual peace plan between israel and the palestinians. saudi arabia is the centerpiece of his counterterrorism strategy. the crown prince is a close personal friend of jared ner, the president' son-in-law and chief adviser on the future of the middle east. it seems very unlikely that this is going to change very much,
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whenever words come out of the administration, long-delayed given that thihas been going on for a week. laura: if he has been murdered by saudi operatives in semi, is -- in some way, is that so blatant that there is a danger that this could backfire within saudi arabia itself? robin: i think it sends a strong message to anyone who evenns ers criticizing the regime about the dangers that they face. i thnot the first action by the crown prince.a this irt of a pattern of oamping down on, whether it is women activists, othem sentenced to death this year, moderate clerics, who come out as the leading spokespeople condemning extremism and sunny -- sunni fundamentalism. there ha been scores of rests of top businessmen. this is a pattern that sends a
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strong signal toudverybody in arabia not to mess with this leadership. laura: robin wright, thank you so much for joining us. areworld's top scientis rning of a climate catastrophe unless we change our ways. the intergovernmental panel on climate change says the world is on track for rising temperatur of close to three degrees celsius. they say governments must change their policies and we all need t to alt way we live to prevent devastating consequences. science editor david shukman has more. david: the warming of the earth is heang for levels that modern humans have never experienced. that is the unnerving implication of this latest report. eait says the rise of the could accelerate even with what sounds like a small ercrease in teure. heat waves are said to become more intense sooner than expected. and forest fires combined with moreng will have a
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profound impact on wildlife. when the report was unveiled at a press conference here in south korea, it came with a startling conclusion. >> if action is not taken, it will take the planet into aned unprted climate future if we compare it to what has happened during all of human evolutionary history. david: the report says massive cuts are needed in the gases warming the atmosphere. that means turning away from fossil fuels like oiause when they are burned they give off carbon dioxide vast new forests must be planted to soak up the gas to have any chance of keeping global warming to a safe level. the obvious question that arises from the radical suggestions in this report is is any of this remotely feasible? so many countries pend on coal, the dirtiest of the fossil els, and have plans to use more. the vast majority of
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vehicles on the roads use petrol and diesel. the other hand, there are significant developments underway. the cost of renewable energy like solar and wind is falling, making it much more viable. electric cars are set to become cre mainstream as the maj manufacturers invest in them. however this plays out, making the change on this sca going to be a huge challenge. the key decisions on this past -- now pass to the countrieig that are thest polluters, like china and the united states. but the report also says the people goingbout their everyday lives have a say as well. >> we can all make choices about the energy we choo to consume. we can make a move through our choices of energy consumptn to renewable energy, to provide a market for renewable energy. t ms of the land, a lot of the land we use produces food, we can make choices about whate we cho eat. david: around the conference
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center, new skyscrapers and highways crawling with traffic. all of this relies on fossil fuels, and like many developments around the world, it will be incredibly hard to change. scientists have mapped outin way of minimglobal warming. we will see what everyone makes of it. david shukman, bbc news, south korea. laa: syrian rebels have withdrawn heavy weapons from the front line in the city of idlib, part of a deal to crate a buffer zone between the rebels and syrian government forces. the agreement was procured by brokered by russia, which supports president assad, and turkey. e president said it is a temporary measurruand he has not d out further action. jeremy bowen reports. jeremy: in this war, most syrian christians have chosen silence or the regime. at this church, the local commander is proud that his mostly christian town has had a vision since the fourth
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century. he is proud that in thee ight to end bellion in idlib, christians are on the front line. the guns are silent for now beca ae turkey and russia want demilitarized zone to separate the regime and its enemies. on the other side are islamist fightingroups. the christian commander says they are all dangerous fanatics, taking orders from western intelligence services, including britain's. he says the jihadist extremist have a choice -- give up their ideology or be killed. no deals? >> no, they are terrorists. when they become humans, we will make a dl with them. and we will do when europe and
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andica stop their support developing countries stop funding them and putting the jihadi ideology in their head. on the frontove line around idlib province. village after village is in ruins. half of syria'sopulation lost their homes. theim r denies the accusation that its forces are the biggest killers. the next stop was sinjar, one more badly damaged ghost town. government frontst from the nustra earlier this year. at a school newly reoperyd, the ministas delivering e supplies. thgime wants to show getting the country back. in the classroom of children too young to remember peace, only 100 families have come back to sinjar. for children who see a lot of war, school is a bright spot.
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for a moment, sinjar's wrecked main street was busy before they melted away into the empty, damaged town. she just started school with a family she arrived with from idlib 10 days ago. one day,ihadist fighters came to her house. her father said they killed his son because his mother was an alawi, from the same sect as the president and from the alawi heartland. >> iave a son. i sent h mother with her kids back there at the beginning of the crisis. he was 14 years old, so he stayed with me. they cut his head off in front of me in my house. he was 14 years old.ey
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cut off his head because of where his mother was my: driving through this part of syria from military positions to broken towns in the rubble and pain, an ending is in sight. the rebels are almost beaten. reopening this highway is part of the plan to avoid the last battle in idlib. this is syria's main north-south route. after all the years of killing and destruction, president assad and his allies are close to victory. but the president will never be able to say that he has restored hole countryto the while this road is still cut. that is why reopening it h become one of his major strategic priorities, and it is shared by the russians as well. this is as far as you can go up
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the highway on the regime side, the last syrian army post, ooking across the territory held by the rebels. if the demilitarized zone doesn't work, the regime, the mrussians, and the iraniaht launch the offensive so feared by idlib's 3 million civilians. en there is the future - not deadly like a w, but not cozy or reassuring. jeremy bowen, bbc ne, on the idlib front line. laura: on the front line of syria's long and costly war. in other news, in brazil far right politician jairolnaro has taken a lead in the presidential election. mr. bolsonaro came short of wieing the presidency in th first round by handful of votes. threenoff will be in weeks, where he will face left-wing candidate fernando haddad. secondcat has named the
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suspect in the survey anpoyulia skripaoning case. he is a military dr implied by the rush -- military doctor employed by russian intelligence services the gru. underveled to salisbury alexander petrov. a former doctor in spain has been found guilty in the theft of babies during the franco dictatorship. he was acquitted of charges due to the length of time it took to bring the case to court. he stole newborn babies from their mothers and supplied to themo infertile couples. in just a few hours from now, president trum will congratulate the new supreme courtti j, brett kavanaugh come after he was sworn in. ctit is a y lap after a hard-fought and divisive battle. republicans and democrats are trying to funnel that energy into the midterms, which areon just one away. nick bryant joined me earlier. the president has appo tted 2
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justicthe supreme court. the economy is booming. he managed to renegotiate a trade deal. is this going to help republicans in the midterms? nick: he has certainly had the best week of his presidency so fa seven days ago he was celebrating the trade deal with cana f and mexico. day morning we found out that america has the lowest unemployment rate for 49 years. and friday afternoon senator susan collinmade that speech in the senate which made it clear that donald trump would get his nominee elevated to the supreme court. you're going to see this victory lap tonight. hees that translate into midterms? we will see, because we're really talking about two very different midterm elections is year, the senate and the house. laura: let's talk about these te to begin with. democrats are playing defense, and republicans are excited.ey eel that the supreme court battle will get their people out to vote because they delivered. nick: republicans are talking about the brett bounce. you saw senator mitch mcconnel , senate majority leade republican leader, saying thanks
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very much to the democrats for coming up with a brilliant electoral strategy for us, because it has energize supporters in those conservative states. as you know, there are 10 democratic senators defending seats in states that donald trump won in 2016. the republicans really think it helps them in those senate races. but the house could be different. laura: that is the flip side, because republicans are playing defense in the house and all of these suburban seats. what is the core critical constituency there? critical court constituency in midteren elections isally suburban women, and you wonderll how they eact to donald trump today describing the allegations of christine blasey ford as a hoax perpetuated by evil people. i think he democrats when he referred to evil people, but he has disparaged christine blasey ford and he mocked her lak. how is that going to go down th suburban female voter
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and overall, voters tend to punish politicians rher than reward politicians. will the raise that we saw last week am gst republicans still be there in a months time? laura: a month is aon time in politics. nick: a morning is a long time in politics. with those kinds of jobless rates, his approva rating should be much higher. laura: nick bryant, thanks for joining us. you are watching "bbc world news america." still to come on tonight's program, writing to the president and getting a response. how the fmer commander in chief took time each day to correspond with regular american laura: facebook has unveiled a device that allows users to video-chat with one anotrir. the most iing feature is
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the camera flows you around d keeps you in focus. the launch comes weeks after the company revealed that at least 50 million users had their accounts hacked. th' bbc' technology correspondent has more on the story for us. put: facebook wants you to one of these devices into your home. you can use thel portal to c other portal owners, or those ing their facebook messenger app. it has an ultra-high-definition camera that is capable of tracking you as you move around the room. >> as you can see, now when i am moving, the camera is purpoly framing the, naturally zooming. dana: facebook ha ibeen developifor the past 18 months. b that time, the firm's tatian been turned upside down come with the huge data breach scandal and the hacking attack whichit at least 50 million facebook users. why should people trustacebook to put this kind of device into
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their homes? >> so we have privacy from the ground up. the fact that we were able to build hardware to software the ai technology we showed you, we put privacy in every layer o this. dana: privacy campaigners say a new device is not the direction facebook should be taking. >> because it brings facebook right into your home looking at you every day. we don't know too much about what going to retaincerom these de the only thing that companies could be sure about is that somehow the devbee is going to hacked. that is what we have seen over and over and over again. da: the company hopes this product will be seen as a fun ndy to communicate with fr and family, using apps like this one which features facial recognition. much like the big, bad wolf, facebook seems keen to get into your home. >> a-ooo!
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laura: wting to the president is a hallmark of american life. when president obama was in th al office, every night before he went to bed he read 10 of the letters he had received. these are notes that regular americans sent to the white house -- some supportive, some critical, and others that were completely unexpected. l >> dear esident obama. mr. obama: his wife and two children paid $1200 a month for health insurance. >> dear president obama, i'm writing to tell you about the $15 my family donated to your 2012 campaign. it is about wanting to say that $15 means something these days. $15 is a special pizza dinner at our local pizza stop.
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it is one and a half tickets to see th new film at the cinema we walk our daughters to. odit is getting fresh nstead of frozen. >> dear president obama, i hear that you are good at correcting homework. i wonder if you could look at this. particularly the highlighted portion ond he back. how do? thank you. mr. obama: it gives you a sense of what is best about america and inspires you and makes you want to work that much harder to make sure that that spirit is reflected in our government. laura:ri jeanne laskas letters,all of those plus many more. "toresult is her new book, obama." imshe joined a shortago. how important are these letters
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to president obama for him tope take the tture of the nation? jeanne: it was something he set out to do on the second day of his presidency. he said "i would like see ken at the end of each i y," and he kept that up all through. uld say they are important. laura: you compiled these letters and some of them are heartbreaking and heartfelt. is there one that really stands out to you? jeanne: oh boy, there are many that stand out to me. there is one that makes me cry each time by a woman from rth caroline who was writing a terrible letter expressing her emotions during her father threatening to sho up the house. he was a marine who was suffering from ptsd, and she d saved his life, and deci write to president obama about that. laura: just extraordinary, the emotional burden he had when governing the country. these letters, you say in the
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book, have real currency in the white hous what influence did they have? jeanne: that was remarkable to trace. the letters come from the mailroom and would be ushered ayinto the west wing, 10 a but they would be dispersed. the esident would come out a say, "everyone read this," or "let's use this in a speech," or "why is this happening?" it was a constant conversation coming from the letters. laura: it started, the whole idea writing to the president, with presidentoosevelt and the fireside chats in writing -- inviting americans to tell him their troubles. with pre whole new level with the fact that he replied. jeanne: a whole new level. you can see american democracy in action when you watch this. dthat is what he set out individual voices matter. this is what i'm here to say. you matter, citizen. write to me. i would like to know what is going on. at times he would write back.
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laura: you got to talk to president obama about what they meant to him. how did he sum it up? jeannethey meant a lot to him. he talked about it as something that was sustaining to him and his presidency, to keep touch with the emotional currency that was going on out ithe country, something you cannot get i polls or charts, the stories, the fabric of everyday americans. laura: whaunwas the most pected letter? jeanne: most unexpected? oh gosh, probably some of the kid mail. kids writing things like "why don't you wear a tie-dyed shirt someday, psisident obama?" y things that were fun. laura: thank you so much, jeanns marie lafor joining us. jeanne: my pleasure. laura:he power of an old-fashioned lette to the president and how it shaped obama's presidency. you can find mu more of all of the day's news on our website.
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to see what we are working on it anytime, make sure to check us out on twitter. i am laura trevelyan. thanks for watching "bbc wld news america." >> with the bbc news ar vertical videos are designed to work around your lifestyle, so you can swipe your way through the news of the day and stay up-to-date with the latest headlineyou can trust. download now from selected app ores. >> funding of this presentation is made possible by the freeman foundation, and kovler foundation, pursuing solutions for america's neected needs. >> how do we shape our tomorrow? it starts with a vision. we see its ideal form in our mind, and then we begin to chisel. we strip away everything that stands in the way po reveal new ibilities. at purepoint financial, we have designed our modern approach to
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banking around you -- your plans, your goals, your dreams. your tomorrow is now. purepoint financial. >> "bbc world news" was presented by kcet los angeles.
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captioning sponsored by newshour productions, llc >> woodruff: good evening. i'm judy woodruff. on the "newshour" tonight, a new intern paints a dire picture of the damage climate change will cause without drastic actions. then, the disappearance of a "washingto after his visit to the saudi consulate in turkey. and the impact of rising waters as a result of climate change on a tiny island in the chesapeake bay. >> it's ironic, the chesapeake bay over the years has provided a living for the folks here, and now it's the chesapeake bay that is threatening the island, threatening to take it away. >> woodruff: all that re on tonight's "pbs newshour."


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