tv PBS News Hour PBS April 17, 2019 6:00pm-7:01pm PDT
captioning sponsored by newshour productions, llc >> woodruff: good evendyg, i'm oodruff. on the newshour tonight, one on one with john bolton. w we speh the national ewcurity advisor about the trump administration'sanctions on cuba and more. then, 20 years after the massacre at columbine high school, what we have learned about mass tragedy in the decades since then. plus, th bottom of the world. sightseeing trips to antarctica have tak off, but the surge may add stress to an alrady delicate ecosystem. >> antarctica is really the world's last great wilderness. it's a continent that is for nature, and i think that's a really important symbol, because so many other places where han civilization has spread to, we have destroyed the environment. >> woodruff: all that and more on tonight's pbs newshour.
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engagement, d the advancement of international peace and security. at carnegie.org. >> and with the ongoing support of these institutions: and individuals. pr >> thiram was made possible by the corporation for public broadcasting. and by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you. >> woodruff:nvestigators in france are pushing for answers tonight in the fire that gutted notre dame cathedral. meanwhile, the push to rebuild has already raised nearly $1 billion, but there are questions inout just how fast is feasible. paraic o'brien opendent
television news has the latest from paris. >> reporter: president macron has come close to staking histh presidency on renovation of notre dame beingveomplete in fiears to coincide with theri olympics in pain 2024. after a cabinet meeting today, the prime minister acknowledge the challees of a five year time scale. >> this is obviously a huge challenge, an historic responsibility. the building endeavor of this generation and for the ill follow. that france sup to the challenge. the state will be up to the challenge. the mobilization has alraready std, and this was the focus of today's council ofr: >> repore went on to say that france would invite architects from around the world to submit designs for a new thpire to replacone that fell on tuesday fire.
the company is run by julian le the investigators inside this building all asking the question why did the fire start. as part of that, they're interviewing contractors who are walking on the renovation at the cathedral and of particular interest will be thcompany walking at the base of the famous spire where the fire was most intense. the company is run by julian labrath, his company won the $5 million the company's corporate video shows him talking to his staff about the project at the time. hsterday, outside the cathedral, he sawas cooperating with investigators and that none of his employees were on site when the started. >> we want more than anyone else to shed light on the origin of this tragedy.
>> reporter: more details are also emerging about what happened immediately before the ere tld. >> at 6:20 tuesdning, the first fire alarm went off but flames couldn't be located at the time then,0 minutes later, a second fire alarm was sounded at about a quarter to 7:00. soon after that, the flames were completely out of control. today, firefighterda firefighters confirmed that they were on the scene in less than 10 minutes and explained how cltoe it had come he entire structure collapsing. >> the fire was spreading near the bell and all the supporting beams are booeden. if the fire reached the wooden structure, the tower would have been lost. from the moment we lost the towers, we wouldose the cathedral. e company of in heroes, one stood out, the firefighters chaplain, who knows all about storming the gates of hell. during the bataclan terrorist attacks,e also ran in to minister to those dying.
on tuesday night, rushed into the cathedral to rescue the sacraments. >> we had a vision of what hell would look like with cas cascadf fire. i'm alone in the cathedral with this amosphere of fire, burnings things, falling from the roof, i performed a blessing and asked jesus to save his house.>> eporter: this evening, at the same time as t fire took hold on tuesday, cathedral bells ran out across europe to9 remember the 2re of notre dame. >> woodruff: that report from paraic o'brien of independent television news. in the day's other news, u.s. attorney general william barr has called a news conf for tomorrow morning, at 9:30 eastern time, to make publicme f the special counsel's tessia report. it's to be a redversion, leaving out grand jury testimony and classified inforhetion, among things. president trump says he may also take questions about the report, after its release.
"the new york times" reports justice department officials and white house lawyers have already had several conversations about what's in the report. the associatedniress reports t north korea has test fire a new tactical guide weapon. kim jong un called the test an event of very weighty significance. the move comings days after u.s., south korean and north korean leaders have saidng they are wilo hold more summits to resolve the ongoing forel crisis. president trump the president has vetoed congress' attempt lv end u.s. inent in the war in yemen. lawmakers had argued that a saudled bombing campaign has killed thoands of civilians and worsened a humanitarian crisis. the president said the resolution would weatin his cotional authority. the u.s.-backed govement in afghanistan is under fire for its treatment of war prisoners.
a united nations report says one-third of captured taliban fighters, and others, een tortured or mistreated. the worst conditions are at prisons in kandahar province, a taliban stronghold. in indonesia, the incumbent president appears to have won a second term in today's election. joko widodo's victory is a boost for moderate forces over ultra- nationalist and islamist groups. widodo's supporters celebrated the news in jakarta this eving, and they voiced hop for social and economic progress. >> ( translated ): today's quick count result showed that widodo is leading but no matter who is elected later i hope he will help to bring indonesia forward, reduce the unemploymte and national debt. i hope for the best for this country. >> woodruff: more than 20,000 legislative seats were also up for grabs in the election. the latest change in u.s. asylum policy has immigration and civil liberties activists vowing to
sue. attorney general william barr has ordered that asylum-seekers will no longer be released on bond while their cases are pending, even if they show a credible fear of returning home. the ruling does not affect families or children who arrive without parents.e meantime, vernment of germany is imposing rules that make it harder for failed asylum seekers to avoid dortation. the move focuses on people who have exhausted all legal avenues to obtain asylum. those who receive asylum in otr e.u. countries, but tr settling in germany, will also be denied benefi. and, on wall street, the dow cnes industrial average lost three points se at 26,449. the nasdaq fell four points, and the s&p 500 was down six. still to come on the newshour: sitting down with u.s. national security advisor john bolton. remembering the tragedy at
columbine high school,years later. the u.s. military expands its drone operations in africa, and much more. >> woodruff: as we mentioned earlier, the administratman announced r shift in u.s. policy towards cuba today, part of increased pressure on u.s l adversaries in america. eerican citizens will now able to sue businessin in cuba operon land confiscated by the castro regime, which s95zed power in a 23-year-old law known as "helms-burton" allowed such lawsuits, but three previous u.s. presidents refused to allow the law to take effect. national security advisor john lton was in miami, flori today, to make the official announcement. and our nick schifrin spoke to
him earlier today. >> ambassador john bolton, welcome back to the "newshour". today you announced lifting -- american's ability to sue over property confiscated by castro's regime. in the past years, president obama a president clion maintained the units, why are you lifting them? >> secretary pompeo, mnuchin a others looked at. this we concluded fundamentally that the intent of the framers of helms-burton to give justice to americans whose property had been confiscated was a good purposand that this was the time to do it. so recognizing other presidentdi 't want to do it, we proceeded, as presidentrump has, other presidents didn't want to move the american embassy in israel to jerusalem, but we did
i could go on with the list. i think this is clearly thedo right thing to justice for americans whose property was stole bin the castro reime is long overdue. >> european allies i talked to indahe lassaid this publicly they are concerned that these e effectively secondary sanctions on european companies to do business in cuba and latin america staffers from george. bush's national security council and h.rmcmasters sff, your predecessor, told me this opens a pandora's box of lawsuits, could gum up the courts, may even drain companies you're not intending to target. how do you respond to those criticisms of reublican former staffers and u.s. allies? >> i think they're badly with respect to our allies, we have been engaged in diplomatic conversations for a substantial period of time here. i think we'leve made it car by the way secretary pompeo brought pwn the waiveiod from six months to 45 days to 15 days, everybody was on notice that
this was coming. nobody should be surprised aout it. it's not a question of secondary sanctions, it's a question of who gets to tvke adantage of stolen american property. i can't wait for the lawsuits when these companies get up and say, but we should continue to benefit from the stolen property without having to pay compensation for the losses that americans hae undertaken. and as for gumming up the courts, listen, my guess is that, for major amecan mpanies, major european companies, there may well be lawsuits filed and settled out t of court's often the nature of complex corporate litigation. >> you said today that the "monroe don strick" is alive and well. even u.s. allies you're working closely with especially regards venezuela consider that language a kind of cloak for u.s. intervention and, as one put it, imperial arrogance in hemisphere. do you understand why even u.s. allies might bristle at some of
that language? >> well, i think many u.s. allies in this region, in this hemisphere, those closest to us, welcome the u.s. leadership here under president trump to keep foreign powers from extending their influence, particularly in venezuela, which is what i was referring to when i said the monroe doctrine is alive and well. it's intended to throw shield around the hemisphere. it's worked for a long tim and i think it's an important doctrine to keep in mind as we work for the objective that president trump seeks here, which is the first completely free hemisphere in human histor we're not earrassed by that. >> what do you say to those people who call it imperialist? >> you know, the united states has never been an imperialist power. we're not starting now. what we want is to prevent others with imperialist aims from taking advantage of weakness of the corruption and thortain nature of the chavez
regimes in venezuela. that's what we had in mind. >> reporter: russia has intervened in venezuela in the last couple of weeks. a ship of security services sent to venezuela to prop up maduro and to send a message to the u.s. it can't intervene in the bern hemisphere. what message are you trying to send by considering us. military options, for exampna, conductinggation operations and visiting ports near venezuela? >> well, i'm not going t get into any specifics. president trump has been clear right from the oset in venezuela that all options are on the table, and we're not going to talkbout what we might do, or not going to talk about what we might not do. ur's for mado to worry about what the united states is capable of, and it's also to make it clear, we value the 000tection of the 40 to 45, american citizens in venezuela. we don't want to see any harmth come tm. the fact is i think, with respect to russia, china and
others, they're already hedging their bets in venezuela. thh've done certain thingsat we object to, but i think they understand, if they're not careful and there is a peaceful transition of power to juan guaido and the oppositi, that they need to watch how they behave and their actions with respect to maduro, or their very substantial debts oney've forced he maduro government could be in jeopardy. th's something they need t think about, i believe. >> i want to switch a little bit to north korea. the president the other day ed the phrase "a step by step approach" when it comes to north korea. he w me understand thihat steps does north korea have to take in order for the.s. to take reciprocal steps and what would those reciprocal steps be? >> i think this is a very familiar part of american foreign policy.ee we need tothe strategic decision and the conduct necessary to eliminate north korea's nuclear and ballistic missile programs. this is aubject that
president trump and south korean president moon jae-in discussed extensively when president moon 'ss at the white house last week. omething that we're committed so. we've seen north korea not come forward and accept what the president has called "the bigh deal," butat possibility relanes maines out there, and it's why the president is still willing to have a third summit with kim jong un. >> you used the phrase strategic decision, then the big deal. so, obviously, you are inspecting north korea to give major -- expecting north korea to give major concession up front before the u.s. makes concessions, relieves sanctions. 'sme of your allies in south korea say thot going to work, that there needs to be, as the president himself said, a step by step approach. what's wrong with making a small step andsking noh korea to take a small step? >> the president made it clear the's not ing to follow negotiation strategies that have failed in the past, so he has
shown to the north koreans first in singapore and more recently in hawaii the kind of economic future that cotod be in re for nory th korea, if thke the decision to give up their nuclear weapons. that door remains open. the president, as i say, is perfectly prepared to hava third summit. so now i think we're waiting on north korea to see they're willing to take advantage of the president's offer. >> to extend the metaphor, why should north korea trust the united states? why should ey, so to speak, walk through the door and know you won't slam it behind them? >> well, i think president trump showed how determined he is to try and get to the big deal by his decision to walk away from a bad deal in hanoi. so, really, the potential is there. i don't know how president trump can be more forthcoming in his efforts to have a good relationship with kim jong un. sends him pictures, he sends him letters, happythday to kim jong un's grandfather on his
bihday on april 15t really, this has been a full-court press by the president, and we'll wait to see what kim jong un does. ton,mbassador john b national security advisor. thank you very much for your time. >> thank you. >> woodruff: and a news update lon the north korean testim we reported earlier, u.s. officials are telling the "newshour" that they do not believe anyinthing was launche the air. instead, they believe that north korea conducted t on the ground. north korea maintains a robust missile and nuclear program. uf >> woo with the 20th anniversary of the columbine high school massacre days away, that school and hundreds of other denv schools, were closed today due to "credible" threats by an 18-year-old woman. today, law enforcement officials
say the woman was found dead from an apparent suicide. in a moment, lisa desjardins will speak with two people whose d ves were profoundly alte the tragedy. but first, we hear from some survivors directly. in the upcoming rocky mountain pbs documentary "ripples ofny columbine," re still struggling with physical and emotional scars. >> i was a senior when columbine happened i saw one of my friends die and everyone else shot around me. >> my name is heather martin and i was a senior in 1999. oii was barricaded in the office. there were 60 of us in there for about three hour >> i'm frank deangelis, former principal of columbine high school. >> my name is maci hall. i was in the columbine high. school libra >> my name is lance strickland. i was shot five times at columbine high school. sowhere around 35 surgerie
that first year or two years felt like i was getting surgery every other month. i was having something done just got to a point in 2001 where i found out i was gointo be a dad and was trying to pay my own bills. live out on my own it was too much at that time mentally and physically to keep up with surgeries so i stopped. >> i don't remember freshman or sophomore year, or junior year, don't remember graduating, ier remembolumbine, i mean definitely there is survivor guilt which i felt i still feel s palpable it's real why didn't i put myself in front of gun. instead why didn't i roll my body over lauren why didn't i pull gina out with me, more of like a punishment because i
wasn't injured i was angry at god upset why am i still alive? why didn't i get hurt? why am i still here? >> i got into this cycle where it was on repeat all i could think about is how bad it was for me, how horrifying it was, images of the shooting were pretty clear, the violence of it, seeing people maimed and hurt and dead those thingsook a while for them to leave i was very depressed very angry couldn't get over the fact that' gone through something and i
felt the world owes me something. >> desjardins: joining me to talk about the lasting impact of orrific day: coni sander father david sanders died in the shooting. he was a business teacher and coach of two sports at the hool. he was the only adult killed, as he ran through the school warning students to flee. and david cullen, covered theoo shting as a reporter and spent ten years writing a book about it, entitled "columbine." thank yoto you both for ining us. coni, i want to start with you. it's been 20 years since this shooting and, today, you were under police protection beofause threat from a potential shooter. i want to kno what are your thoughts this week about the shooting? >> we fully expected that there would be some threats. this is the sad price that we've paid over the last 20 yrs, the fascination with columbine has led us to a sad reality thath this type ofg is going to
happen, and i was grateful for law enforcement's willingness to helpe feel a little bit more safe until the resolution of that event. >> how is the community handling this anniversary, coni? >> i think that the community ia hopeful that wre headed to something different, that after 20 yeah of talking about tat day, we're really looking forward to our ceremony on saturday, that we're calling a recommitment and trying to turn apl 20th into a day where the community does access service and really look forward columbine can take from being a tragedy to being something everybody can learn from. but, you know, at the end, it's still a very, very difficult time for a lot of us. >> david, you were there. what were your memories of that day, especially through the lens of 20 years later? >> there were only reports of injuries, and i sort of apoll
jetcally called an editor i worked with and said it's probably nothing but i'm going out there, and i didn't know where s. i knew the general direction and drove in that direction. when i saw the helicopter circling to the south, that's when first my stomach clnched. i was, like, wow, this is horrible, and then i just droved tohose helicopters. >> it was different at that time, right? because none expected students to have died, and police were waitinfor someone to turn themselves in. >> completely, thethsurrounded building. there was an interesting phenomenon, i got there in the a first ho i was at a place called the columbine libenry where p were told to rendezvous and the kids were t mostre and everybody was talking about what might happen and they kept stopping tir sentences. i realized there was a weird moratorium and unspoken understanding no one was going to say the word death or ah allude to the fact someone might have died, and it became obvious
when one mom sai if they find those killers -- and shepp sto in mid sentence, and thrirp dirty looks all around, like, don't you dare sayou tha loud. i was, like, wow. so no one wanted to accept the idea that this might actually be murder, and i wouldn't go there myself in my head. i wasn't sre it was going to be murder until 4:00 when the sherifeannounced them and world kind of changed, and that's when the world did change because we weren'teady to accept anything this horrific, even the people there. and i n't know, coni, about at your house, but at the library,i i'm curiounow you gathered with your mom, but no one was going to that place >> cony, what was going on at your house? >> i remember my employer, somebody i was working with drove me home and i couldn't figud out why theed to drive me home. everyone knew it was significant but me, that immediate denial. when i got to my mother's house,
i walked in and everyone was on their niece in front of the tvth because helicopters, the media, they were zooming in on the school, and we saw people running out witut their shirts on. it wasn't till later we found out those were the students that were using their clothing to try to stop dad's bleeding. and then they zoomed in on a sign that was in the window that said, one bleeding to death, and i just remember my mom being so upset and saying, i can't believe -- i mean, that poor student. and it wasn't until later we found out that sign was written r dad. even at our house, nobody would acknowledgthat may he was dead. my mom kept saying he was hiding somewhere inhe school and, although we suspected he would not be hiding anywhere in the school because that was not part of his character, we had heard that he was shot in the foot, and we had heard that he was transported to a hospital. we went to those hospitals. it wasn't until the next day that he was confirmed to be
dead. >> coni, i'm so sorry for you and your family that you went through this, and i also find iw remarkabt you've done with your life. you are a therapist who wks with those who may have violent tendencies, trying to divert them from violence. i'm wondering what your thoughts are from both sides of this problem. what do you think it is that triggers this kind of violence and what can prevent it? >> i think a sense of hopelessness is one of the key factors in people becoming violent, whether it be violence towards themselves or violence towards others. one of the things we've learn is support is so important in any person's life, because if they have a support systhtem, e's somebody to notice that they just hopped on a plane from soorida. there'body to notice that this person is shopping for a gun. dave, you know, some people also talk about the amount of shootings that have happened since columbine.ng "the wasn post" found it amazing to me, nearly 200,000
american students have expesenced a schoooting since columbine. you have kept in touch with columbine survivors and families like coni. i'm wondering what aru have d about the way this trauma lives 20 years later. what does it look like? >> last apr, i went to columbine a couple of times and stayed with one of the english teachers -- i hope it's okay with me sang this -- i was staying at his house. when i landed just before the anniversy, i went into text saying i'm going to be a little late, i was in a car accident and i'm okay. he was, like, oh, my god. then i talked to his wife who i know well the next morning and he said he's in an april fog. his car sat there about three days in his driveway because hen didn'tto deal with it. so it lingers and manifests in weird ways that you wouldn't expect. >> coni, i want to fini this
interview talking about your dad. he is someone -- he ran into the cafetefla. he did noe the scene. he ran into the cafeteria and warned ndreds of students who were in the path of the gunmen, saved thoslives. he didn't leave with them. instead, he went further into the school warn more students, and that's when he was killed. what do you want people to know about your dad? >> i want people to know that he was an ordinary yetpe extraordinaron all at the same time, and it amazes me how manytheople i run int were inspired by him while he was alive that, although he saved hundreds of kids from that cafeteria that day, and we only have 12 students' names to read because of him, he was a wonderful dad to myself and my sisters. he was an incredible grandpa. he was a reat husband. he's just -- he was just a good person.
he loved to influence students anyoung athletes and get people to help turn their lives around if they e struggling, and i try to carry on that legacy by helping people who e struggling in their own lives that need support and kind of need a coas, that sayey, i understand that life is hard, what do you need right now? do you need a hug? do you need somebody to talk to? and, over and over ain, i hear from people that were studentsof is for 24 years, he was a teacher, and so many of thm have talked about how he influenced them and he encouraged them, and i just want everybody to take a part of david sanders with them and just move forward with kindness. >> i feel certain our viewers will take that piece of your da. with th coni sanders and david cullen, thank you bot
>> woodruff: stay with us, coming up on the newshour:en thronmental cost of tourism in antarctica.pl , steve martin and martin short give their brief but spectacular take on success in show business. s,over the past several yehe united states military increased its presence and broadened its mission in africa. one place where that expansion is best seen is niger, part of what's known as the "sahel" region of africa. the u.s. air force has built a huge new base there, from which it launches drone aircraft. but as in other hot spots where drones fly, in niger those operations are controversial. special correspondent mike cerre was granted rare access tohe base.>> as shocking of the deaths of four soldiers ambushed in nig in 2017 was the revelation thate
nearly 800can military personnel are stationed in niger. the drone watching the missib frome was not armed. they are now, and u.s. isex nding its drone operations in niger. the deserts separating north africa from west africa can be forbidding. but for smugglers, human traffickers and, more recently,r non-state terrt organizations, the remote expanses can also be inviting for moving fighters and weapons freely through the region. ch to thconcern of general thomas walhauser, the comnder of the u.s. forces in africa. >> one way to character niger would be is they haen a good partner in a very, very bad neighborhood. >> agadaz, agadez, the traditional desert crossroads and trading outpost in central niger is about to become the new hub of expanding the u.s. military's drone operations in the african nation. here in the middle of the desert
is where the u.s. is constructing its newest drone base, now that more drone missions are originating out of africa than the middle east. estimated cost, $110 million and counting. the decision to build the basede was more than five years ago, while making mali was under siege. according to ambassador to niger, eric whitaker. >> i think it's in our interest to help a willing partners suc as niger to fight them herett wrather than forced to fight >> reporter: there are no flags or signs at this heavily fortified desert base outse of agadez, niger. the pentagon simply refers to it as "base 201." when it's completed by the end of the year, it will be the rgest installation ever built by air force personnel and thees military's newt outpost in the fight against a variety of of extremist organizations who use the desert to smuggle weapons and people into west rica. >> you have boko haram and
groups coming wn from libya into mali, the and other groups come down from albya into northern mali that whole border witria is a problem for the government of niger. >> reporter: the u.s. has been r'erating drone missions out of another base in ni capital since 2013. and the c.i.a. is also believ to be using another drone base in northern niger. but the military wants to consolidate its drone operations at this new base that is both at this new base with less commercial air traffic restrictions and closer to tat terrorist thin africa's sahel region south of the sahara connecting wes wafriith central >> starting up from near nothing in the middle of sub- saharan africa is daunting. >> reporter: major conner riley is in charge of the air force runway construction crew, currently doing a six month tour of duty working days and nightse as dictated byxtreme heat,
dust storms, delays in heavy viequipment repairs and hang to locally source gravel and asphalt. this 6 the drones flying around the clock missions, as well as for the much-larger supply planesop inbound from ethat are a the base's lifeline for everything from new personnel and are parts to fresh food and mail. >> you're in such a logistically isolated place the middle of a iruntry that's twice the size of texas and it's allroads to get to the next big city. >> reporter: like most construction projects, this one is well over budget and schedule but they've had to deal with some unique ntingencies. the air force won't say how many drones like these will be based here. like other u.s. drone operations, once airborne, they will be controlled by pilots two continents away back in theco u.s.ducting the missions by
remote control. >> drones have been flying in niger really since 2013. that decision was made years ago with regards to the ability to provide intelligence to the sahel countries and with regards to our ability as the united states to take a look at the thats that were forming in that part of the sahel. have the groups involved here such as i.s.i.s. and al quaid are franchises, and they have spread from one country to the other. >> it's a legimate threat but also an exaggerated threat. terrorism is not the gr national security threat the niger faces. it really is povertyd internal corruption. > sally booker is also concerned about thw base being a magnet for increased terrorist activities in the area. >> that makes it very much a target for those who would oppose a u.s. interest, but also for those who may be opposed to the nierian government who can use the presence of the u.s. as
a target to try to undermine the government. >> while construction is still underway this year, major kyle yates' security attachment is responsible for protecting the american personnel and equipment, but it will be up to the nigerian forces to prote the base once completed. >> we do training and engagements with them on a daily basis. that's really just to make surop that we caate with them on the same page. >> because it is so isolated, base 201's first line of defense depends on the acceptance and prottion of thelocal community, something military civil affairs reservists have been cultivating with tribalca leaders and th by helping them with solar powered water wells and other humanitarian missions. most of the locals we were able to speak with independent of the governnt and military said they are hoping the new base can make up for the economic fallout from niger's and the europeance
union's clamp down on the trcrative human smugglingde to europe. >> i think it's a very dangerous blurring of the lines whethe pentagon and the u.s. military start getting involved in the development activities in africa. it's public relations, as they acknledge, and, yes, it may benefit a particular village, but that is not a development strategy thas going to succeed in addressing the crushing poverty that niger faces. >> welcome. this is about how all the rooms are that we e in. >> as for the more than 300 servicem and women stationed here in this air conditioned tent city for six months at a stretch without any rs, the air force is shipping in all the food and flying in freshcepro from europe. >> may family knows i'm in whrica. they have no clure i am. i prefer not to tell them because you see stuff on the news and surroundings countries, et cetera, and there's no need to worry them.
>> the u.s. is financing andil bung base 201 under a 10-year lease agreement with niger and the base ultimatelys implunge the nigerians, for however long the american military is the tenant. pbr the "newshour," mike saray near agadez, niger. >> woodruff: now, to our continuing series "warnings om antarctica it was the last of the seven continents to be discovered, and it wasn't until the late 1950's that any tourist ever visited. but now, is becoming a populario destin william brangham and producers mike fritz and emily carpeaux traveled there and have this report on how tourism has thus far shown little impact on antarctica's pristine environment, but why there is also growing concern about the influx of more and more people. >> brangham: welcome to the
tourist boom at the bottom of the world. it's a front row seat to a remarkable show: majestic humpback whales, frolickg fur seals, an army of curious, charming penguins. all that, framed by a backdrop that defies description. nothing but miles of mountains, glaciers and icebergs as far as the eye can see.e thy continent of antarctica is suddenly "hot"-- a record 50,000 people came last year. g.q. magazine recently said "now is the time to go." the "new york times" said, "forget times square, ring in the new year right here." th>> the main attraction o area is just, it's a place where people are irrelevant. peop just don't count. you're coming here purely as a visitor. >> brangham:avid mcgonigal has led over 120 trips to antarctica for one ocean expeditis, a
canadian tour company promoten"" envirolly-conscious travel." these are trips where the scenery comes th equal helpings of science and history. this is definitely not budget travel. it's about 12 to $20,000 per person for this two week cruise: that,ncludes kayaking, hiking and motor boat excursions by day, white tlecloth meals and lectures from scientists and naturalists by night. mcgonigal's job is to keep the roughly 140 passengers, who have come from around the world, safe and satisfied. >> some people are just down here for the history, and so you've got to find some historical elements to deliver. some people just want wildlife. some peoe really just down here for the ice. now it's a matter of juggling that all around and then tryin to pull together a plan. >> brangham: the journey starts at the southern tip of south
america, and goes thro dh the infamoke passage, home to some of the roughest seas known to man. two days later, the ship finally leosses the antarctic circ, one of the southerost latitudes on earth. >> this sort of place, it deepens your uerstanding of the world, but also of yourself. >> brangham: hermione and jon roff made the trip from northern england. ae's a child and family therapist, he's lican priest. >> the beauty of it, and we wanted to come and see it, either before it disappeared or we disappeared. >> we are probably spending more on this holiday than we've spent on our holidays in our entire lives. >> brangham: is that right? >> i think so. >> brangham: yusuf hashim retired almost 20 years ago. he was a marketing director for shell oil in malaysiea he convincedy 50 of his friends and family to join him on ts trip. what are you doing here on the bottom of the earth?
>> spending children's inheritance. >> brangham: they know this is happening?ha >> yeah,s one of them over there. got my daughter here as well, so it's bonding time. each time i come here, i've been here four times now, i will never tire of lookin icebergs and penguins and the scenery. it makes it all worth living. >> brangham: in addition to all the wildlife, the ship visits historic sites, like this abandoned british scientific base from the 1950s, as well as active bases: 11 scientists frol ukraine work ae here year round. and the tourists can sample the homede whisky made with glacial ice at one of the southernmost drinking holes in the world. visiting antarctica until relatively recently was a trip no human had ever made. >> it's absolutely incredible that our seventh continent, our newest continent, was scovered less than 200 years ago, changing what we understand about the globe today.
>> brangham: katie murray is a polar historian who works for one ocean, teachinthvisitors abouearliest antarctic explorers: like britain's james cook, or the ill-fated race to the south poleetween robert falcon scott and roald amundsen, or perhaps the most famous antarctic adventure story: ernest shackleton's dramatic" endurance voyage" several years later. wealked to murray in the ship's movie theatre: >> it's quite incredible actually that 100 years after the heroic age, just over 100 years since scott and the polar party died on their return from the south pole, and you've got these great stories of endurance and suffering, we can now come to antarctica effectively for fun. >> brangham: this record number of tourists coming here has beey growing steaince the ye80's when just a few thousand made the trip ever.
>> when the soviet union t collapsed, the soviet fl ice-strengthened vessels became available and people realized they could actually charter those and bring those down. that was what started the whole rush in the 1990s. >> brangham: today, more and more tour companies are rollingu new fleets of luxury ships capable of navigating these icy waters. the arrival of more and more visitors to antarctica is also leading to concerns about their impact on this pristine ecosystem: >> antarctica is really the world's last great wilderness. there's no permanent human population there. it's a continent that is forin nature, and i that's a really important symbol, because so many other places where human civilition has spread to, we have destroyed the environment.c >> branghaire christian is the executive director of the hern oceanand so coalition, a washington, d.c. based advocacy group. she believes tourism h so far been a force for good, galvanizing people to care about a continent that is thousands om
miles ome. right now, tourists only visit the antarctic peninsula, because it's the most accessible and most scenic part of the t, but christian notes: it's also a region stressed by climate change. how many more visitors can the region handle? >> so right now there we may not be able to see a lot of effects, but you suddenly have a sha increase in the number of people who are visiting a small colony every day, that might start to have an impact. n brangham: remember: antarctica hgovernment. no nation runs this place and currently, all tour groups are governed by a strict, but voluntary, set of regulations. for example: only one ship at a time is allowed at designated sites. there are rules about ho cmany peop go ashore, and how close they can get to wildlife. one ocean expeditions es all tourists vacuum and clean their gear before going ashore, so no foreign seeds or dirt end up on land.
all returning gear gets a similar scrub every day. but invasive species have already taken hold. this moss is from the arctic, a trace amount somehow made the 12,000 mile tr. and there are also concerns about wildlife: two of thehree penguin species on the peninsula arin decline, researchers believe its being driven in pary warming environment. given that, are all these human visitors an added stress? you see all that reddish brownth material oground behind me? that's all penguin guano, or penguin poop. not only does it give this whole area a unique aroma, but scientists have been measuring the stress hormones that are released into e guano at places where tourists show up, and where tourists never go, and for the penguins, so far at least, it doesn't seem that the presence of tourists are causing them any problems. andrea raya rey is a conservation biologist based in ushua, argentina, a city whe
the bulk of all antarctic tourism bens. raya rey says that while tourism is showing little impact thus far, she worries about the estimated 40% growth in the industry. >> tourism puts an extra pressure on the ecosystem. one ship, it's okay. two, okay, three. but 10 at the same time pointing at them? it's stressful. >> brangham: it's also a concern shared by those within the toism industry. >> it's going to be more a matter of just, how do you manage the numbers when there's just nowhere left to go and you've got more ships coming down. >> brangham: as for visitors like jon and hermione roff, they feel incredibly lucky to have seen the wonders of antarctica up close. but they admit that they are worried about their own impact. >> there is a growth of tourism that does leave a mark, however careful we are, it leaves a mark.'s
very difficult balance, i'm really thrilled that we've come. i hope not too many more people will come, you know? >> brangham: for now though, there is no sign this tourist boom is slowing. for the pbs newshourm william brangham on the antarctic peninsula. >> woodruff: ste martin and martin short met more than thirty years ago on thset of and according to them, the legendary comedians have been nearly inseparable ever since. they sat down with brief but spectacular host s tve goldbloom k about their latest touring special, "now you see d em, soon you won't." >> this is a standw on all the interviews. the moving sideways camera. >> yeah. >> but i always find it odd to cut to someone who's not, who'd be talking into camera. >> but you know, you've always struggled. remember when you struggled with the talkies when the talkies came in rows. i
>> canust make my face? >> i had to work on my voice. >> now don't keep looking at him at the green tape. >> ah just relax. one, two, three. it's hard to make a career in show business, possibly even harder to sustain a career in show business. did you ever think that you would be relevant for this long? >> i guess he's talking to me. >> and let me say whatfoan honor it ime to be standing next to the man who is standing next to that man. (lghter) >> seeing your work together, it feels like it commands the attentn in the same way like an oscar's monologue commands attention. and then you slow things down and you become reflective. tell me about the design of your special and your tour? w this was a real moment for both of us when e totally
rehearsed. we've done the show a 100 mes. everything was just in its beautiful little comedic place. >> you know, it was a work in progress as we developed it. >> and still is. >> i mean there would be time wet think, "gee, should we the chat? does the chat slow it down?" and someone else would say, "no, no, no, that'serike having diith you guys." >> steve, the banjo helps slow things down a little bit. l >> yea me get it. >> no, no, no. he just-- he just mentioned it. >> steve -- steve, what is your relaonship to the banjo? martin, what is your relationship to steve's banjo? >> i dated steve's banjo for many years. i tarted playing in the '60s. i've been playing for 55 years. i know i should be better. we're in show business but i have another life as a musician. and you have a whole other set of frien that kind of levels you out. it's really nice.th 's why you're unlevel. t >> in the sht i saw last year, it seems like there's an honest mistake. steve, you sayrinville, martin, you say greenville and you say, "you'd tell me, steve, if you were having a stroke, wouldn't you?"
and it looked like, an uh, is that a real mistake?is are there realke? >> no, no. yeah, yeah, yeah. it was a mistake. >> totally yeah. >> we will never intentionally make a mistake because that looks phony. itthink the audience smell but, if something happens, we exploit it. >> in your wk together, left- handed compliments play a big role and you talk about a lot of them. what are some of your favorites? >> one of the great things about touring around the country with >>rty short, no paparazzi. >> ah. ell, that landed good. >> the crew's been instructed not to laugh. >> just like our audiences, that must be what happens! >> there is a martin short on twitter buit's a nutritionist in london. you're not on twitter? >> really? no i'm not. steve, you're very good at twitter. >> i stopped. i thought it was too dangerous. >> just that you mightatay something ould offend people? >> you can say the most innocuous thing and suddenly, you're in the news. >> martin, does jiminy glick allow you to say things that you wish you could say in real life? >> one time i was interviewing edie falco i asked her a question. i said, "what was it le
starting off as a young actress?" and she started answering and i went, "shh, just because i ask you a question doesn't mean i need an answer." and she said she used to be shushed as a kid and it an electrical shock in her. >> faux flattery plays such a character in your role and your work together and yourpe ances on talk shows. for this moment, if you couldea look a other and pay each other just a genuine compliment. >> we can't do that. >> can't do that. >> i'll tell you b i've said thore. you are great singer and you use exactly right. i've heard you talk about it. "no, i don't want to sing a orious song." but when we do, comedy songs, they're so beautifully sung and i've worked with karen carpenter. i've toured with her who ian amazing voice, an amazing instrument, every night and you have t instrument because you really sound like karen carpenter. >> thank you. >> don't go there. i don't have anything. soy. >> hi, i'm steve martin. >> and i'm martin short.
>> and this is our brief but spectacular take on... >> ...our fabulously popular and undeserved success.f: >> woodrn the newshour online, we'll have full coverage tomorrow of the release of the redacted mueller report. in the meantime, read our guide on what to expect. that's at our web site, pbs.org/newshour. and that's the newshour for tonight. druff.dy w join us online and again here for all of us at the pbs newshour, thank you and see you soon. >> major funding for the pbs newshour has been provided by: >> text night and day. >> catch it on replay. >> burning some fat. >> sharing the latest viral cat! ou can do the things you like to do with a wireless plan designed for you. with talk, text and data. consumer cellular. consumercellular.tv nd
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