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tv   PBS News Hour  PBS  May 21, 2019 3:00pm-4:01pm PDT

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captioning sponsored by newshour productions, llc >> oodruff: good evening. i'm judy woodruff. former white house counsel don mcgahn skips his hearing before the u.s. house judiciary committee, as some congressionae democrats raup calls to begin impeachment prt eedings agaiesident trump. then, trouble in the persian gulf. the leaders of the u.s. senates foreign relatimmittee, on the latest tensions wi iran. ius, two worlds, one state. a college program inois seeks to bridge the divide between urban and rural students. >> we make this assumption that anyone on the left believes a kind of rigid philosophy, and anyone on the right believes a rigid philosopthat's never changing. and one of the things that this program is getting students to realize, is that there's a
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tremendous amount of nuance that exists. uff: all that and more, on tonight's pbs newshour. >> major funding for the pbs newshour has been provided by: >> for projects around the house, home advisor helps find local pros to do theork. you can check ratings, read customer reviews, and book appointments with pros online at homead homedvisor is proud to support pbs newshour. >> kevin. >> kevin! >> kevin? >> advice for life. life well-planned. learn more at >> text night and day. >> catch it on replay. b ning some fat. >> sharing the latest viral cat! >> you can do the things you orke to do with a wireless plan designedou. with talk, text and data.
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consumer cellular learn more at consumercellular.t >> bnsf railway. >> babbel. a language program that teaches spanish, french, italian, german, and more. >> and with the ongoing support of these institutions: >> this program was made poorible by the corporation public broadcasting. and by contributions to your pbs station from viewers thank you. >> woodruff: a war over congressional subpoenas is intensifying in the investigations of president trump. former white house counsel don mcgahn refused to appear today before the house judic committee, under presidential orders tignore a subpoena. later, the committee subpoenaed hope hicks, a former close aide to the psident, and annie
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donaldson, who worked for the white house counsel. separately, the president appealed a federal court rulatg pheld a subpoena seeking his financial records. we will get the details, right after the news summary. a severe weather front spawned new tornadoes and flash floody,s tocross the southernpl ns states. in oklahoma, a muddy red lake of flood water drowned entire sections of yukon, near oklahoma city, engulfing homes anand car. interstate 40 had to be clos in wheatland, missouri, a powerful storm last night destroyed parts of a speedway. >>e think a tornado had to have come through, the way it's looking. some people say strong winds, t but looks of everything, we're thinking probably a tornado. we've lost campers in the, campgrounds arr bleachers up top. we've lost the infield. we've got a little dage to the grandstand section up top, too. then we lost our off-road instructure, which is the portion back there. >> woodruff: the governor of
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missouri declared an emergency today in 13 counties. abortion rights supporters staged rallies today to protest a wave of new state laws restricting abortions. in washington, hundreds gathered outside the u.s. supreme court, joined by members of congress and several democratic presidential candidates. protesters also turn in some of the states that have recently passed restrictive laws. president trump's top national security officials briefed congress titoday on tensions iran. secretary of state mike pompeo, acting defense secretary patrick shanahan and general joseph dunford, chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, met privately with house members and senators. meanwhile, iran's president hassan rouhani rejected talks th the u.s. we will explore the day's events, later in the program. this evening, the u.s. state department warned that there are signs that syria's government is
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again using chemical weapons. it cited an alleged chlorine attack this week, and it warned at the united states wil respond quickly to any use of chemical weapons. in indonesia, president joko widodo has officially won a second term, but the challenger is refusing to give up. official results released today showed that widodo is winning by ten points. in response, former general prabowo subianto vow a court allenge. and, in jakarta, hundreds of people protested the results. riot police faced off against the crowds, who gave out t owers, and said their democracy isake. >> ( translated ): we are concerned after seeingraud happening during this election and no aions were taken. e prabowo campaign team filed complaints, but no actions were taken. we tnk indonesia's democracy is hurt in 2019. woodruff: subianto is a ultra-nationalist who has aligned himself with islamist hard-liners. u.s. companies will now have a 90-day grace period before
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restrictions kick in on saleto chinese tech giant huawei. the commerce department announced the extension on monday. it cdeame as pre trump pressures china to agree to a trade deal. but in china today, huawei'san foundec.e.o. told a news conference that u.s. constraints do not matter. >> ( translat our lower-end products on the periphery might be hurt. but our most advanced pre ucts will notfected. at least, our 5g technology won't be affected. and not only will it not b affected, but after two or three years, no one will be able to cah up with it. >> woodruff: huawei is the world's largest telecom provider, but u.s. officials say it is tied to china's government, and is a cyber security risk. and, on wall street, news of the grace period for huawei boosted tech stocks. the dow jones industrial average gained 197 points to close at 25,877.
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the nasdaq rose 83 points, and the s&p 500 added 24. still to come on the newshour: lating calls for impeachment among congressional democrats. two senators weigh in on the latest tensions with iran. asylum seekers on a greek island face brutal living conditions pld xenophobia. , much more. >> woodruff: the showdown over the balancof power played out again today on capitol hill, w congressional democrats seek answers from thehite house, and the trump administration exerts executive privilege. our lisa desjardins has the latest. >> desjardins: anotherng about the mueller report, and another empty chair. >> our subpoenas are not optiol. mr. mcgahn has a legal obligation to be here for this
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scheduled appearance. if he does not immediately correct his miste, this committee will have no choice but to enforce the subpoena against him. e>> desjardins: former wh house counsel don mcgahn, a key witness in special counsel robert mueller's investigation, ignored a subpoena to appear before the house judiciary mmittee today. president trump has instructed mcgahn and others not to testify before congression oversight committees, which he and other republicans, like doug collins of georgia, argue are political theater. >> the chairman orchestrtoated y's confrontation when he could have avoided it, because he is more interested in thane fight n actual fact- finding. >> desjardins: but many house democrats see a constitutional issue, and are debating how to respond. in the past day, rising sentiment that the house should open an impeachment inquiry. massachusetts congressman and presidential candidate seth moulton. >> it's past time to have this debatei and franklyink we waited too long waiting for the
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mueller report to come out. >> desjardins: but house speaker nancy pelosi has cautioned against speeding toward impeachment. congresswoman karen bass of california agrees. >> i think that this lawless administration is probably going to force us to impeach, but i don't believe that we ar today. >> desjardins: this as the n offense, with mocking tone in pennsylvania last night: >> angry democrats, they're like little embers that are burning. they're going crazy because when the mueller report was finished, they said no collusion. >> desjardins: house democrats have called a meeting for tomorrow morning to talk about ureir next steps. for the pbs newsi'm lisa desjardins. >> woodruff: joining us now from capitol hill is congressman jamie raskin, a democrat f.rom maryla he's a membeof the house judiciary committee.
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congressman raskin, welcome backed to newshour. >> thanks for having me, judy. >> woodruff: absolutely. you are a member who is calling for impeachment preeldings to begin, but as u know, speaker pelosi is saying it's too soon. she's saying democrats need to fos on the issue and besides, there are other avenues that heten't been exhausted. >> right. well, you know, a number of members on the judiciary committee, probably a majority of the judiciary committhtee, nw feel it's time to launch an impeachment inquiry. that's different froimm achment, and the press has framed this as impeachment or no impeachment. the real question is should we have an inquiry that looks into en high there has crimes and misdemeanors. i think there has been such lming evidence presented to us from the special counsel in the mueller report of presidential obstruction of justice, 11 different episodes of it, that it's staring us in the face. since the mueller report finally came out after thatgonizing
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choreography by attorney gener barr, we have had even more obstruction from the white house, the president is essentialliardered everybody in the executive branch not to comply with our suboenas, not to render testimony to congress, not to produce documts and so on. so it's a completely unacceptable sitation, an untenable situation, and we need this to be on the tab along with everything else that we're doing. >> woodruff: but if i could just interpt, even witthe definition, okay, you're saying it's an inquiry rather than an impeachment formal proceedingou ytill have a the speakers and others to say you have to go to the courts, youd neeurt rulings on the definition of executive privilege, other constitutional questions. can you really proceed in any meaningful way unless you have the courts with you? >> well, ihink first of all the courts are going to be with us starting with yeste'srd excellent ruling for the n itsight committee
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desire and our desire, because i serve on that committee, too, in our dese to obtain the information from the president's accountants. the court there made the critical point, which is that if congress has the pow under article one two impeach the president, we certainly have tho lesser power investigate the president for criminal deeds, but you have the execu branch going around and saying the congress isn't a prosecutor, they can't getnformation from us about financial impror ieties or otimes that may have been committed, and the court completely repudiated that argumtht. so we havauthority to get all of that stuff, and the supreme court has been very clear th fat tact finding function is an essential prerogative of the legibrslative anch of government. >> woodruff: what about speaker pelosi's point, though, congressman, that unless there is bipartisan agreement on this in t senate, which there is not now, you're just in effeinct ng your wheels. >> welk we love our speaker and
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we love her because of her political judgment, and i think that that is presely what we'll have to be discussing as we move forward. obviously there is overwhelming sentiment for launchi an impeachment inquiry in our party. and we've heard from a lot of even more conservative members that they want the democratic party to stand tall and stand strong for the rule of law and for the constitution. you know, the question of what the senate will do, and we say this with respect tyt everng, you know, we just have prescription drug reform to lower everybody prescription ug prices. we passed gun safety to try tote close the et loophole and the private gun show loophole. we don know what the senate will do. mitch mcconnell seems to be sitting on everything. he calls himself now the grim reaper because he wants the senate to be the graveyard for all of the good legislatione passes in the house, but we have to ignore that and go on and do our jobs and try to encourage them as much as possiblto do their, too. i think this situation is no
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difff:ent. >> woodrut it's not just the senate. the latest poll we did came out earlier this month and it showed only 39% of americans think that impeachment proceedings should. beg >> well, and you know, i was not part of that 39%. i was part of the 61%. i think a lot of us were on the committee. we were encouraging our people to say, let's see if we can make this happen through contempt citations. let's see if we can get the administration to behave reasonably. i think the whole country can see now that this president i acting in a lawless and totally unprecedented way when he says we are not gng to cooperate with congress at all. so they're operating with what they think is immunity from th constitution and absolute impunity. i flipped over. last week i was where most people were in saying, let's nowe it some more time, but i have seen enough. i think we do need to move forwarat some poin i hope quickly to an impeachment inquiry. >> woodruff: can you ahead on this if you don't have
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your leadership support? >> new york i think we ve to be together as a team. and we have a greaat der on the committee in chairman nadler and we have a great leader as speaker. the democrats are unified in trying to stop lthlessness. judy, it is not an easy situation, as you know. mowe are dealing with tht lawless president of our life "times," and we're all trying to figure this out together. i think we have great unity and solidarity within our caucus, and we'll asve togethe one to try to get this done. >> woodruff: congressman jamie raskin of maryland, who is a meer of the judiciary committee, thank you. >> thank you for having me. >> woodruff: tensions with iran are on the rise. the trump administration claims tehran is planning attacks on u.s. forces and on allies in the middle east. but mr. trump also says he does not want war with iran. ni schifrin reports on how
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today the senate was teiefed on the igence underlying an increase of american forces in the region. it schifrin: this afternoon, top national secofficers arrived on capitol hill to brief the house and senate. and afterward, acting secretary u defense patrick shanahan described rece. military moves as "measured." >> we received credible intelligence about threats to ast interests in the middle and to american forces. >> schifrin: today's briefing comes at the end of dramatic few weeks. on may 5, after the administration said it received intelligence of a "imminent" attack on u.s. forces and allies, national security advisor john bolton released a statement promising any iranian attack would be met with ccnrelenting force." heerated the deployment of an aircraft carrier group and bombers to the middle east. >> we sent some messages to make sure that it was clear to iran that we recognized the threat and we were postured to respond to the threat.
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>> we have not received theic econenefit that we were promised to receive based on the nuclear deal. and then we were left with no other option. >> schifrin: on may 13, four oil tankerwere attacked, and u.s. officials told the newshour they believed the attacks were directed by iran. alarmed allies urged the to avoid escalation. >> the most relevant attitude to take-- the most responsible attitude to take-- is, and we believe should be, that of maximum restraint. >> schifrin: on may 15, the u.s. withdrew non-emergency personnel from iraq, citing a threat from iran. but by then, president trump tried to diffuse tensions. he told acting secretary of defense patrick shanahan he didn't want war. and on may 16, he said this: >> mr. president, are we going war with iran? >> hope not! >> schifrin: but on may 19, a
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rocket att k landed less than a mile from the u.s. embassy in baghdad. iranian-backed militia commanders later disavowed the attack. and today, shanahan suggested that military deployhad prevented iranian attacks. >> schifrin: we now hear from two senators who were at today's briefing. we begin with new jersey democrat robert menendez, ranking member on the senate foreign relations committee. senator menendez, welcome back to the newshour. wre you reassured by the intelligence tha presented today and the u.s. actions in response to that intelligence over the last couple week >> well, not reassured that we don't ve an environment in which a miscalculation on either side can take place. a miscalculation that then canra acce into a more major conflict. and so that is deeply concerning r me. and stiains concerning, especially after everything i heard. and the second rt that i am also very concerned about is at i do not get a sense fromra
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the adminiion that they have a strategy to takthir maximum pressure campaign and turn it into a diplomatic opportunity to resolve iran's nuclear desires at a neg slating table. the come by nation of those two ings leaves me very unsettled after the hearing. >> schifrin: i want to ask you about the strategy in a second, but about the intelligence itself, just a couple of words from some of your republican colleagues, senator graham said that the intelligence revealed the ayatollah himself directed some of the attacks that we've seen in the middle east in the last few days and mike mccall, the ranking member of the housea foreign airs committee, a republican, said iran carried out and launched severaof the attacks. so is that what the intelligence shows? >> first of all, i don't know how one can comment on the intelligence itself, because it's classified.wi but say this: the
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environment has changed as a result of the maximum pressure campaign that has been brought ag.nst ir yes, that has changed. that e ayatollah said are in the midst of a chaanllene how do you respond to that. ged. that has chan but the reality is that i don'tn that i find direct evidence of what my colleague suggested. i think at's an extrapolation that's a bit too far. >> schifrin: over the last coup weeks we've seen u.s. military move both an aircraft carrier group, bombers to the region, patriot missiles. the administration callthis defensive, calls it deterrence. administtion officials say that has successfully prevented iran from attacking. is that what you believe? >> well, i don't know that, in fact, an attack didn't take
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place because of the u.s. tions. i will say that to characterize the intelligence, there was a heightened concern. i understand that. and there was a response to that concern. i don't know that one can say that, in fact, there were no actions as a result of that. and i'm not sure that in the midst of having all of that presence in the region and a continuing maximum pressure campaign that has no off ram that we are not building a pressure cooker that eventually, if there is no preure outlet, will explode. >> schifrin: and that brings us back to the strasetegy, tor. the administration says their maximum pressure campaign has been successful. they specifically cite it that hezbollah is less able to conduct actions in the middle east. do you believe the strat geen successful so far and will be successful goorward. >> woodruff: >> well, the maximum pressure campaign, the success of it is measured ultimately by whether or not you can get iraback to
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a negotiating table to fix the deficiencies in the jcpoa to ensure it does not have phway toward nuclear weapons. that will be the ultimate determination. i think it's a litty earl declare mission accomplished. as a result of the maximum pressure campaign. so, yes, has iran been affecte by the new leveling of sanctions and other decisions the administration has levied, absolutely. heirthey hurting in t economy, absolutely. but the fundamental question, what i walked away from this briefing not havingny sense of is that there is parallel track to cash in on the maximum pressure campaign, which iso get iran back to the negotiating table. and i think that that's a dangerous proposition. >> schifrin: senator robert menendez, democrat of new jersey and ranking member the senate foreign relations committee,
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thank you very much. >> thank you. >> schifrin: and we now we turn to the chairman of the senate foreign relations committee, idaho republican jim risch. senator, welcome back to the news hour. let's start with the big picture and what you just heard from senator menendez there, fears anabout the strategy fears that the u.s. isn't, as he put it, cashing in. do you believe that the u.s. has a strategy that is successful and effective right now? >> you know, i believe thate i also beliere are options. our options are very, very narrow. i have real confidencein he strategy that is being pursued and also the t teamt's pursuing it. we had a number of people in front of us today briefing us, including the secretary of state, the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, acing secretary of defense, who talked about how they came togetr and responded to the recent uptick of activity on the part of the iranians. think they handled it absolute ly as well as it could be handled.
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look. we do nowant war with iranians. yes heard the president say that. were isn't anybody in this building who wan with the iranians. having said that, the wall is in their court.e they are -- ry day they commit malthign activitiet is designed to aggravate us to, hurt us, indeed there's thousands of u.s. soldiers that have beenjuilled or red in rcent years in the middle east all because of iran's malign activity. so the ball is in their court.ol they've beenby the u.n. what they can't do, and they know that the malign things that they're doing, likeeing the chief sponsor of terrorism in the world really, that that you know, this business of launching a rocketed attack on our embassy in iraq is an attack against u.s. soil. people are saying, oh, theen preswants to go to war.
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if he wanted to go to war, he had a perfect excu righ there. >> schifrin: let me ask you about that attack. forgive me for interrupting, but leme ask you about that attack. are you suggesting that iran specifically ordered that attack on the u . embassy? >>am. i think that what you have i people who are either iranian or beo are proxies who havn armed, trained, and ordered to commit those attacks, and i include this one in those tacks, as having done that. so look, whether it's iranians or whether it's the proxy, heollah or the huities or whether it's radical shia groups in iraq, if they're rmd -- armed and trained and ordered by iran commit an attack, as far as i'm concerned, that's iran fmple you hire somebody to do something, you can't say, i'm not responsible. of course they're responsible. >> schifrin: sator, in th minute or so that we have left, as you heard senator menendez say and democrats have said this
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all day, that they risk a miscalculation, that they risk increasing u.s. forces to the region where u.s. forces are s.erating near iranian for there could be some kind of accident, some kind of t scalculation. do you worry abat? >> of course, everybody worries about mis will be miscalculations on the part of the iranians. we know what we're doing. going.w where we're we know what the intelligence is. i think the iranians have a tendency to miscalculate. i really believe that the action that's been taken by the administration, sending the naval forces that they did, sending the bombers that they did, convinced the iranians that they were miscalculating it, and if they keep picking at us like they are, they're going to have direct action from the americans. they need the stand down. they need the recculate and recalibrate what they're doing, and everything will be just fine if they'll do that.
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>> schifrin: setor jamie raskin, republican of idaho and chaiman of the sene foreign relations committee. thank you very much. >> thank you. >> woodruff: stay with us. coming up on the newshour: the new york city police officer who killed eric garner stands trial in police court. bridging the divide between urban and rural college students in illinois. plus, poet willie perdomo shares his "humble opinion" on the lost art of letr writing. >> woodruff: threats from the peddle east are changing the politics of eu this thursday, right-wing nationalist parties are expecte toll in e.u. elections. their support is largely driven by voters weary of mass immigration. the european union says the migratn crisis is over, with dwindling numbers of new arrival but as special correspondent malcolm brabant reports, on the
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greek island of samos, the crisis is far from over. perhaps it's worse than ever. >> reporter: welcome to what they call the jungle. uninitiated might think that after four years, this frontline island would, by now, have the infrastructure to cope with the influx, especially as the european union has given greece poer $1.5 billion. migrants and s groups claim the squalor has reached a new low. >> it's too bad. we're sleeping in tents. snakes, wolves, wild animals, evernight come here. and shouting. it's too bad. >> reporter: iyad je gaza landed six months ago, and says he's been told it could take two years for his asylum application to be heard. e fears this shack will bn open prison cell for the duration.
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>> i think the pictures are more clear than anything i can say. we have bad conditions here. no doctors, no good food, no bathroom. can't sleep very well. hue place here is not for mans. the animal runs away from this place. >> no good. nmos no good. fogood. police no good.or >> reporter:than four years after europe's migration crisis began, people are still coming in their flimsy boats, apparently undeterred by the poor conditions on the islands and the fact that most will find e. impossible to leave greec but people are still dying out there. while we've been here, aoat carrying three afghan families capsized off the t coast. the turkish coastguards say they recovered the bodies of five children and four women. two other people were feared drowned. >> ( translated ): how are you? >> ( translated ): i'm well. >> ( translated ):mhat's your
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e? >> ( translated ): my name is amjad. es reporter: kareem eshtewi fled gaza tpe political persecution by hamas. >> bonjour. r means good morning. >> reporter: he's learning french, but has little chance of reaching france, because greece's frontiers have been sealed for over three years, >> ( h translated ): we cae to serve the countries which will save us. >> rorter: samos's burden isio disproportte to its size, due to its geography and because greece's northern land border is clos to migrants. the island and its 33,000 inhabitants are just five miles from the turkish coast. s e official camp, run by the state,pposed to accommodate 700. but as many as 4,000 ouve behind anide the barbed wire above samos' main town, vathi. there are 40 nationalities here. most are african. bogdan andrei runs a group called samos volunteers. >> people are saying t
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pttentionally, conditions are ike this, so it's a deterrent for new people to arrive, which is crueum it's ie. pew can you say that we are going to keele living in squalor, in inhumane conditions, just to deter other people from coming? >> reporter: miltiades klapas heads the migration ministry, ich is responsible for allocating the e.u.'s $1.5 billion handout in rugee aid. where has th b money gone? part of this money went to the construction of facilities, approximately 34 in total, including the reception and identification centers across greece. >> reporter: do ceu think it's able?ve >> eone who criticizes today the not-so-good conditions in rgsome of the facilities, that europe today does not contribute tisresolving this e. >> reporter: a day center run by the volueers offers temporary
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respite for asylum seekers, who are bored, frustrated, and angry at being trapped on the island. >> some greeks, they treat you bad. i'm sorry to say, because you are greek, like racist, because we are black. some even close their nose when they see you come. it's very bad. >> reporter: at the day center, women escape the pressure cooker of the jungle. there are almost as many migrants in the camp as theeere k residents of the main town. volunteers praise the people of samos for generosity. but spokeswoman ag olivieri, a former political advisor in argentina, warns the islanders' mood is changing. >> they're tired, they're frustrated, they've been left alone by their gov mnment, just h as the government has left alone the refugees. so in a way, the tensions are g and the tensions are getting quite high. >> reporter: it's the migrante children that the frontline. poor living conditions in the jungle are being used by some greek parents to try to stop migrant children going t
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school. they've erected banners tellin em to stay away. they fear disease and that some may be violent because of the trauma they've endured. sonia pasclaki is the parents' representative. >> ( translated ): once the living cditions improve, once proper accommodation is provided for these people, dignified, humane accommodation, then we'll be happy for them to come to school to learn and become educated. >> reporter: with echoes of the 1950s integration battles in the deep south, a handful of migrant children turned up for class. eshly scrubbed, smartly dressed, enthusiastic. most of the greek children had left for the da. speaking on eir families' half is majida ali, a syrian hanted asylum in greece who has stayed on samos p her fellow refugees. % it is really important for them becausedihey start bu their future. and without education, they cannot continu building.
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>> reporter: but teacher marco pecconi believes some f segregation is necessary. >> there are existing structures where they could be taug in a separate way, because definitely the level.u nnot teach someone who does not know greek the same way nothat someone who greek definitely. is it not? so what do we finish by teaching? ign language or just doing drawing in the last class of primary school? if the goal is to reduce the ucation, general of ed there's no better way to do it. >> reporter: across the e.u., far-right parties are pected to prosper during may's election for the european parliament. ioannis lagos belongs to golden dawn, which greek prosecutors allege is a criminal, neo-nazi organization. along with other lawmakers, he's out on bail hile a court decides whether golden dawn cos.ucted attacks on immigra despite the accusations, lagos says support is growing. >> we've seen that the europn union's insolvent policy for the
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last 40 years has demolished europe values and principles. they want to turn us, europent into a diffeontinent. they want to islamicize us whether we want it or not.el but fortunthe europeans do not want this anymore. >> reporter: if the far-right increases its influence across europe in the els and tightens anti-immigrant legislation, what will become of refugees like majida ali? unlike many victims from the middle east and beyond, she's been willing to say publicly that she was raped after being arrested in syria. she was held in the notorious sednaya prison near damascus, compared by former inmates to a nazi death camp. >> the first time they arrested me, the military, they take me with a family. the family, it was a mother enth three chilnd one boy. he was 12 or 13 years old. and they raped the mother in front of her child, the boy. and then, because the child
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tried to protect his mum from the rape, then they shot the boy in front of his mum. reporter: majida could have left the darkness of samos for the greek mainland, but believes she has a duty to stay and help. mpe authorities are planning another n samos. islanders are angry that their once-idyllic holidaysoestination ma have two permanent ghettoes. samos is bracing itself for another summer of overcrowded rubber boats here, the migration cris is never-ending. for the s newshour, i'm lcolm brabant in samos. >> woodruff: "i can't breath." those we some of the last words of eric garner. his death at the hands of new york city police sparked national orage and helped fuel the black lives matter movement.
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the police officer at the center of the case is now facing an administrative hearing. as amna nawaz reports, the outcome is not expected to call for significant penalties. >> nawaz: judy, that rht. in july 2014, police detained eric garner on suspicion of selling untaxed single cigarettes on the street. during that encounter, officerda el pantaleo is accused of using an unauthorized chokehold. the moment was captured on celln video. take a look. >> don't touch me! i can't breathe. i can't breathe! >> nawaz: eric garner, who had asthma, died as a result.
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in a column earlier this week, jim dw times" reports, many in the neighborhood where garner died betoeve his death won't lead real change, or lasting consequences with the police. he's been following the ongoing hearing, and joins me now. jim dwyer, welcome to the newshour. very briefly, if you can, just lay out for us what both sides are arguing in this hearing. >> well, it's an administrative hearing in the police department's own trial room, so they conduct disciplinary hearings there. and officer pantaleo, who is the arresting officer and the sergeant who oversaw him, are charged in pantaleo's case with using a chokehold recklessly and causing his death, eric garner's death as a result of that, the sergeant is accused of failingse to ovehim. the defense is saying eric garner was a very sick man. he had asthma, hypertension,
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weighed almost 400 pounds, and his deateswas theult of essentially incidental contact that triggered this very ill man's fatal asthma attack. >> nawaz: so it's anad nistrative hearing. it's not a criminal proceeding. what is the most serious consequee that could come for the officer, officer pantaleo as a result of this? >> well, it's what the police department can do to him, which is fire him, and you know, i think that's the tonp alty. they may also cause him as part of that penalty to forfeit any accumulated vacation or sick time that he has. or it can go all the way down to a few day suspension o loss of vacation time, or if he's not found guilty, hwill go back to work. >> nawaz: so there could be no equences as a result of this, is that right? >> well, if that's not found guilty, sure. >> nawaz: so the hearing we should note, it's first time the public has really bee able to hear any key parts of accounts aroundde mr. garner'h and
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the process that followed it. over the last five day, what new things have we learned from the hearing? >> a couple things. one is that the city medical examiner found out the injuries on mr. garner's neck on the tissue inside of it showed that ere had been a chokehold. there were injuries to four, layeccording to the medical examiner. they showed some photographs of that. and it was this that triggered garner's asthma attack that caused his death. that was one thing that came out. another thing that came out just todayas very interesting, that when mr. garner was in the ambulance and either dead or very near deat the officers' partner took it on himself to write up the arrest warrant charging mr. garner with the felony, le, distribution of untaxed, unlicensed cigarettes. now, he claimed thaner had
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10,000 cigarettes. in fact, garner, as the officer admitted today, only had five packs of cigarettes with him.e so thewas an effort apparently from this testimony toress up the story to make garner seem to have been doingme ing more serious than selling a few individual cigarettes. >> nawaz: there was also a text message exchange that was reveal in which one of the lower-ranking officers was communicatinwith a higer supervisor, and that supervisor wrote back to him to say, not big deal when referring to eric garner potentially dying as a result of that encount. how did that go over in the hearing? >> well, people we shocked, particularly the garner family, members and friends who were there. and it was startling, startling statement. the officerthe lieutenant through his representatives, his union representatives, said that he was merely trying the comfort his subordinates who were upset about, this but in a way the lieutenant was actually right.
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it has not bee big deal. we're five years on. therhas been no criminal charges brought against anyone involved in this terrible event. there was atate grand jury in statin i'll. they voted not to charge anyone. the feder grand jury sitting in brooklyn with several rights prosecutors from washington involved, they have not yet released anything, t at this point it's quite unlikely as the atute of limitations runs out on fifth anniversary of the deat july 17th of this summer. >> nawaz: jim, you've been talking to people in that neighborhood, five years on now, this one video, this oncoe ter sparked a national movement. it sparked nationaattention to an issue thaghad been lon going on in terms of lawmaker and how they can sometimes mistreat people in poor minosty neighborho, the black lives matter movement was sparked as a
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thsult of this. what do you thin impact will be if there is no consequence as a result of this hearing. >> ier think peoplee already very upset when it came out that the local grand jury, the state grand jury was not going to charge him. and actually there were significant protests in the streets of new york when that happened about two years ago or so. and i expect that if the trial board ides that anyone was guilty or t guilty, you know, the reaction is going to be almost perhaps a shrug of the shoulders, because -- >> nawaz: you're saying this is something people don't expect much oft a all? something will have to follow. the trial has been delayed. jim dwyer of "the new york times," we'll have to leave it there. rhank you very much for y time >> sure thing.
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>> woodruff: our special series on "rethinking college" continues, wunh a look at a ue program that aims to inspire a generation of leaders by bringing rural and urban college taudents together to lk about their differences. hari sreenivasan has our report for our regular education segment, "making the grade." >> sreenivasan: it'snly a three-hour drive, but it might as well be a world away. these urban college students from chicago are trading skyscrapers for silos, as part of a university progra bring together rural and city students. the university of chicago and eureka college created the program, called bridging the divide, to address harsh political rhetoric that emerged after the 2016 elections between rural and urban communities. >> welcome everybody to eureka we're happy to have you here, and i'd like to tell you a little about our campus. >> sreenivasan: professor junius
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rodriguez is a history professor at eureka, a college in politically consvative central illinois. what is the divide about? >> we've forgotten how to communicate with one another, in so many respects. i think that one of the things about modern-day politics is, we make this assumption that anyone on the left believes a kind of rigid phosophy that's neve changing, and anyone on the right believes a rigid philosophy that's never e anging. and the things that this program is getting students to realize is, that there's a tremendous about of nuance that exists.>> reenivasan: leading the program from the chicago side is david axelrod, former senior advisor to president barack obama, and the director of the university of chicago's institute of politics. >> what is very, very clear is that people in our metropolitan areas, and oftentimes on campuses, view the trump supporters as kind of ignorant racists. and that really isn't fair. by the same token, you know, it is not righto assume that
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everyone who opposes trump is for open borders-- also unfair. trese are the, these are the caricatures we'rng to penetrate. >> sreenivasan: organizers ohe the bridgingivide program hope that educating college students on the hot topics of the day, especially how they are larceived by rural andrban potions, will inspire a better dialogue for the leaders of tomorrow. >> so just follow me along... >> sreenivasan: each school group visits the other's community. >> we're gng to visit something called the reagan peace garden. >> sreenivasan: on this trip, students from arrupe college, a o-year degree program in the heart of chicago, and students from the universof chicago visited eureka's campus in rural illinois. one of the republican party's greatest icons, president ronald reagan, is a graduate of eureka.
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during these visits, conservative and liberal-leaning students are pushed to talk about their different perspectives.ti >> they are skl about politics and the direction of things, but they're not cynical. anthey really believe that they have the capacity to change things. >> sreenivasan: the students also watched focus groups. one, a group of trump voters from a rural community, and the other, a group of hillary clinton voters from the city. political opinions ran deep. we were asked not to identify focus group participants. >> do you think it's fair to say that the both of the groups we saw lived in a bubble? i'm eager to hear eaction. >> i noticed in the focus groups how closed-minded they each are. th both talk about how the only way to bridge the divide is to sit dowand talk, but they both raised the issue that the other party doesn't want to talk. >> there is just a lot of fear-mongering, think that was evident in the way they discussed illegal immigrants,
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just t takes that >> sreenivasan: the students heard hurtful stereotypes in both groups they watched. some rural students hepaard icipants from the hillary clinton supporter focus group describe their communities in ways that elt were offensive. >> they definitely didnha't understandi'm about. they never met me, but dropped words like uneducated and ignorant.>> hey almost stereotyped us down here as like, sexist, racist for being a trump supporter. >> sreenivasan: while some urban students felt issues surrounding race were dismissed. >> i think coming from their perspective, they were saying, "well, where i come from, we don't see color, we see everybody as equal." if you don't see my color, then i feel like you don't see me. ignoring a person's self- identi is not helping the policies that have been implemented. that hurts black and brown communities.
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>> sreenivasan: each focus group was followed by deep dives into hot topic issues, like tyimmigration and job secu community leaders in both urban and rural settings led tours of homeless shelters, job training sites, and immigration centers, engaging students in lively discussions. >> i tnk it's just nice for them to come down and see our side of things, like, our small- town minds, because we are republicans, you know. chicago is blue, but the rest illinois is red. and i just think it's nice for them to get our perspective on things, and how we see trump. >> i sort of got this feeling an, that maybe i would not be welcomed irea like this, a rural area where maybe tmuy have not ha experience with a hispanic person. but i haven't experienced it.e ing that i get a sense of, is a sense of community, and how y a lot of people really r eachther, more than they rel on public aid, or governmental aid.
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they say, like, "yeah, we really pride ourselves on knowing our neighbors, and helping each other out, if need be." >> i think knowing when twi speak, and k when to listen, is a big tool that i'm gaing here. the students that i'm interacting with, my opinions differ from theanirs. i am learning how to keep that to myself, at certain points, and tolso discuss it at certain points, in order to understand more about why we feel differently, and what sort of shapes that. >> my favorite tng that i've got to do is talk to the people from chicago. i mean like,hey're insightful, and they're willing to listen and converse. and i think that if this group of people righnow were to step into congress tomorrow, we could change a lot of things and make the world a better honestly. >> sreenivasan: organizers axelrod and rodriguez agree. >> for those who are depressed about the future, it's a real tonic to see the relationships unfold between these kids, and this kind of awakening about a world larger than their ownsi .
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>> politics is the art of the massible. and to be able t that happen, you have to have this willingness to dream, but you'vl also got to beng to engage, and you've got to be persistent. you can't give up on the system. and we're hoping that's what they pick up. >> sreenivasan: for the pbs newshour, i'm hari sreenivasan in eureka, illinois. >> woodruff: texting and emailing technology has revolutionized the way we communicate. it has permitted us to be more efficient, to stay in touch easier, and has likely changed the dynamics of somer most important relationships. buwithin that revolution, what have we lost? tonight, poet willie pdomo, urges us to take up pen and paper because, in his "humble" opinioletter expresses more than just words. >> these days, humans arein
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grlonelier by the gigabyte. hookup and social apps connect us before we actually meet. bullies thrive anonymously. google completes our sentences. it takes only three emojis to say "let's have a martini ands dance; iing to be fire!" words have lost their intent, their impact. the role of writing letters has become an almost extinct practice in our ily lives. the envelope in the mail is just a bill. i used to be a passionate letter writer. i wrote my letters by hand, so my friends were able to see my redactions and second thoughts. they were privy to my flaws, celebrations, and conflicts. one friend told me she carried tone of my letters from e harlem to paris like a charm. i waed my letters to be a familiar voice in a new city, a blues song repyed in a strange village. on occasion, i senand received
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letters from friends who were trapped in the prison industrial complex. they liked to call letters" kites." for them, ink, blank pages, and time were at a high premium. their letters were usually full of proses, epiphanies, a requests for poetry. i would return their kites with shout-outs from the here, i would say. fly the kite for a day, if not your full sentence. letters are where we argue, say goodbye, dream, failive, tell secrets, and send regrets. we c't filter our lives or curate our feeds in letters. letters are where we attempt to tell the truth and wait. people tend to believe handwritten letters. or, as one friend suggested"" you can't hide from a letter so easily." recently, my wife wrote me froim her ood home in puerto rico. she could've easnt emojis of sunshine and palm trees, or a squared photo of her doing a mountain pose on a local beach. but instead, she shared her she cried post-hurricane mariaet tears in herr.
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she left splotches of coffee stains and smudges of ink on the margins. i believed her. some of us still write letters; it's our resistance against loneliness. wher write a letter to someone you love, and if you can't write, have someone wte it for you. surprise a friend, a classmate, a coach, a beloved, mentor; tell them a story, let them know you're paying attention. letter writing is a pure act of devotion; a place where-- if not storytellers-- we all become human again. >> woodruff: great advice. and on the newshour online right now, homemade sunscreen recipes shared on social media claim to offer more natural protection,y but a new stows they lead to harmful skin damage. you can read more on our website, and that is the newshour for tonight. i'm judy woodruff. join us onlinetoand again here rrow evening. for all of us at the
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pbs newshour, thank you, and we'll see you soon. un >> majorng for the pbs newshour has been provided by: >> babbel. real-life conversatis in a new language, like spanish, french, cerman, italian, and more. s consumeular. >> financialervices firm raymond james. >> bnsf railway. >> home advisor.he >>ord foundation. working with visionaries on the frontlines of social change worldwid >> carnegie corporation of new york. supporting innovations in education, democratic engagement, and the advancement of international peace and rise. at >> and with the ongoing support
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of these institutions and individuals. >> this program was made possible by the corporation for public broadcasting. and by contributions to your pbs yostation from viewers lik thank you. captioning sponsored b newshour productions, llc captioned by media access group at wgbh >> you're watching pbs.
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. hello, everyone and welcome to amanpour and company. here's what's coming up. james baker the fbi's former lawyer joins me. in 2016 he helped launch the investigation of russian attacks, but donald trump says he was part of an attempted coup against his presidency. and in the run up to your's parl amenterary election is russia behind tis of french  parties sowin dcard and distrust? plus, it was a tragic day in the new york times newsroom when david carr collapsednd died in 2015. now his daughter shares her story of love, loss and


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