tv NOW With Alex Wagner MSNBC July 1, 2013 9:00am-10:01am PDT
>> yes, ma'am. >> you ended up here. and then is that why he circled your car? >> yecs, ma'am. >> he comes out from where. >> yes. >> all of a sudden you notice he he's circling your car. >> yes, ma'am. >> he's circling your car. >> yes, ma'am. >> are you still on the phone with dispatch? >> yes, ma'am. >> are you giving them a description? >> yes, ma'am. >> where does he go when you sight him again in. >> he walk back into the darkness there. >> he went there? okay. >> he walks back in here. >> yes, ma'am. >> does he make the turn or -- by the time he gets here you can't see him? >> correct. >> you're still in your car and you're watching him walk away. >> yes, ma'am. yes, ma'am. >> okay. then what happens? >> the dispatcher asks me what direction he went up and exactly what address i was at. >> this is when you don't realize what street you are on because are you on the center street and you live on the outside? >> correct. >> you're trying to figure out what street you're on. so you see him go here? >> i got out of my vehicle to look at this house's address and see if there was a sign there.
>> okay. >> there wasn't. >> okay. >> so i walked through the dog walk to see if there was a sign here or an address that i could make out easy. >> okay. and then what happens? >> the dispatcher asks me if i'm out of my car. and i said yes. they said do you know what direction you went in? i said no. they said are you following him? i said i don't know, i don't know where he went. >> but you continue straight on the sidewalk. >> yes. all the way through. >> then what happens when you get -- decide you still don't know where you're at? >> i still didn't know where i was at but i was able to give the dispatcher a description from the clubhouse. i said they come in straight past the clubhouse and my car is right here. >> is your car running or you've shut it off. >> it is shut off. >> you just parked here. you follow him -- so you walk here. when you get here you realize, okay, i'm just going to go back to my car? is that what happens?
>> no. the dispatcher says, would you like a police officer to still come out? because i said i don't know where he went. >> okay. >> because he asked me for -- what direction they went in, what road. i said i don't know where he went. they said, well, do you still want an officer to meet you? i said yes. they said, well, where do you want them to meet you? i said at my car. so i started walking back towards my car. >> is this all dark in here? >> yes, ma'am. >> there is no lighting back here unless it comes from someone's houses? >> yes. >> is it all dark down here? >> yes. unless there is patio lights on. >> so at what point and where, from what bushes, does he jump out? >> it was somewhere around here. >> did you know if the -- is there bushes along this walkway or where are the bushes? >> there are hedges around the backs and sides of buildings. >> you think it is somewhere where the "t" is that he jumped out? >> yes. >> you remember, you were
walking this way, did he jump out in front of you or come up behind you? >> i don't recall. >> from what you guessed, he's somewhere hiding at this "t" in the bushes when he jumps out. >> yes. >> okay. and then where do you end up when he -- when you guys are on the ground and after this is still happening? >> he punched me in the face and i fell backwards and i don't even know -- >> you just know you're somewhere in this area? >> yes, ma'am. >> when the police took you, they took you -- >> back up this -- >> back up this way. okay. when that man was standing over the flashlight, do you remember what building he was from? >> no, ma'am. >> do you remember what building you saw when you said you saw somebody? >> this one. >> you saw somebody over here when you were hollering for help. >> yes. >> this is the building where you see somebody. okay. okay. but he jumps out of the bushes somewhere in this area. >> yes, ma'am. >> okay.
>> you can have soda or coffee or anything? >> water. >> okay. you don't need to use the restroom yet? >> no, ma'am. >> may i approach the witness, your honor? >> you may. >> ma'am, i'm going to show you what's been introduced into evidence, i believe without objection, 176. you recognize state's exhibit 176, ma'am? >> yes. this is the google map i brought to him that he wrote on. >> and is that the google map that you were using in the last interview with the defendant? >> yes. this is the same map. >> okay.
zblur >> your honor, may the court assist us by dimming the lights? ma'am, showing you state's exhibit 176. do you see it there? >> yes. >> okay. and is this the google map you used in having the defendant describe his actions and where he came into the contact with the person we now know as trayvon martin? >> yes, this is that map. >> let's go over a few things. i'm pointing to -- appears to be a pink right here. what is the significance of that? does it say car on there? >> if it says car, that's where he says his car was when he he first noticed trayvon. >> i'm going to blow up part of this google map so that jurors can see it.
so right here i am pointing to where it says the word "car," that is pink. he's actually writing that in or are you writing that in or how does that progress? >> he wrote that down. i may havearrow, showing the din that he was going. >> the defendant was driving? okay. the next what appears here as something in pink and an "x,"? >> that's supposed to indicate where trayvon was when the defendant first saw him. >> trayvon was driving this way and he comes in contact, trayvon martin, the victim right here where the "x" is? >> yes, that's where he says he sees him first. >> in terms of using this map i see what appears to be a line going this way. tell me the significance of that. >> the line that leaves the car shows the route of the car and the line that leaves the "x"
shows the route of where he says trayvon passed him and then went behind the first set of houses there. the houses to the right of the clubhouse. you see three there at the top of the "t." >> okay. let's go back, if we could, to right here. is this what you understood to be the clubhouse area that i am circling right here? >> yes. >> there appears to be here an "x" and some lines right here. can you see that? >> yes. i believe it should say 911. that's where his car went when he said he called 911 there. >> may i approach the witness again? i'm going to give you the actual exhibit. that is actually 911 -- so tell us again the significance of this right here that i'm circling, this part of this exhibit. >> okay. you'll see from the first place
he says the car is, there's a line that shows him going there. then instead of putting car at that location, because he said he remained in his car, we used "911" to show that's where he was when he was in his car and called 911. >> now on this exhibit are there two lines, one going this way and the other one going the same way but there are two lines going parallel at that point? >> yes. the "x" indicates trayvon martin, the first "x" all the way to the left. and then it is supposed to be a line showing the "x" stops at the car when he says he looked into the car. >> he , being trayvon martin, looked into his car? >> that's what george zimmerman said. >> okay. >> when i asked him now draw a line where you say after trayvon leaves you where he ends up when he is out of your sight.
that's the arrow that goes straight and ends up behind the houses right there. >> if you go up a little bit, that line. he -- it's right behind the house where he says that's where he loses sight of had him. he follows the street around. >> that's where the defendant claims that he lost sight of trayvon martin? >> yes. >> you also have something here and i can't make out what that is, but it is pink and it's some kind of writing there. tell me the significance of that, if you could. >> you'll see how the car where it was 911 -- this mike is not acting right -- leaves the clubhouse? i asked him to draw where he gross there. he initially wrote that he stopped there, but then he scribbled that out to change where the car ends up a little bit more forward. where it says "car." >> right here? >> if that's where it says "car." >> he originally had had it here, then it moves here. what happens over here?
>> the circle means that's where he said trayvon circled his car. >> where that circle is and the "x," that is when defendant claims that trayvon martin came up and circled his car. is that correct? >> yes. >> tell us what -- in terms of the defendant is telling you using this google map, what he claims occurred after that. >> trayvon leaves that area and goes straight into the "t," the top of the "t." >> am i pointing it out here? >> yes. he says at the top of the "t" as the intersection, he doesn't know if trayvon continued straight or if he went down. >> okay. >> between the houses. >> tell me if i'm going right. the defendant is claiming did he not know if trayvon martin went this way or went down this way? >> yes, that was my understanding. >> what else does the defendant then claim? >> that he got out of the car to locate a house address. so that he could better tell
dispatch where he was. this is all on the tape though so you can hear exactly what he said. >> so the defendant is claim offing he got out of the vehicle right here to try to get an address so he could tell dispatch where he was at? >> yes. >> okay. what happens -- the reason i am asking you, it appears to be lines going this way. if you could tell us the significance of that. >> that's probably just a second line -- he says that he goes all the way across the "t" to the other side. >> stop me if i'm going too far. does he claim he's going like this? >> yes. >> all the way to this street? >> yes. >> what does the defendant claim occurs when he gets over to that street that circles the whole retreat at twin lakes? >> i believe that's where he says he lost -- when he was telling dispatch he no longer noticed where he is a. he says that when he was there is when he no longer knew for sure which direction trayvon had gone and thought maybe he was
hiding. >> meaning he didn't know whether trayvon martin went this way or whether he went this way right here, one of those two? >> yes. >> what does the defendant then claim at this point? >> he discusses with dispatch whether or not the police should still come to the scene. and it is agreed that they will. >> what else does the defendant claim as to what occurred? >> he begins to walk past back to the vehicle, which would mean he has to go back the intersect of the "t" again -- >> am i going the right way? >> yes. >> stop me whenever he says something else happened. >> he says it happens at the intersect of the "t." >> right here? >> yes. >> what does the defendant say happens here? >> that trayvon approaches him. he's not sure exactly where he came from. >> in the interview that you conducted of mr. zimmerman, the defendant, he said somebody came out of the bushes or something. were you trying to use in this google map, determine, or have
him point out where it was the victim came out of? >> right. because in some of the areas you can see bushes, but i couldn't particularly see them in that area so i was trying to figure out what he was attempting to say. >> what happens then? >> he says that's when trayvon approaches him and said what he said on the tape. >> all right. you have, it appears, an "x" that's drawn right here. >> that is the location that he said that when he was calling for help and saw somebody at a residence, he indicated that was the area that he had seen the person. from a residence that would be located in that area. >> ma'am, you've conducted an interview, roared an interview, then conducted a second interview using the google map. at this point then do you take additional steps regarding your
interview of the defendant? specifically, do you give him a paper for him to write out a written statement? >> yes. i had had him fill out a statement form -- >> thank you, your honor. >> i just explained to him, as best he could, to explain everything he had told me in the interview. be very detailed as to what he told me and try to put that in writing. >> now in terms of the written statement, did you actually sit with him and go, okay, this is not right, change this or how did that occur? did you leave him alone or were you with him telling you got to write this, you got to write this, or how did that proceed? >> no. when i gave him the paperwork to write the statement, i left the room. and when i came back, he was done and i had had him sign them. i didn't read them. i dropped them over to the investigator. >> you've been listening to testimony from detective doris singleton, the first person to
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detective doris singleton, the first person to interview george zimmerman at the police station on the night trayvon martin was shot is still on the stand. let's listen in. >> go ahead. >> in august of 2011, my -- i don't know what it says there -- something house. >> neighbor's. >> -- my neighbor's house was broken into while she was home with her infant son.
the intruders attempted to -- >> attack? >> i think so -- attack her and did, however, sbd reported to the scene of the crime and the robbers fled. my wife saw the intruders running from the home and became scared of the rising crime within our neighborhood. i and my neighbors formed a neighborhood watch program. we were instructed by sbd to call the non-emergency line if we saw something suspicious and 911 if we saw a crime in progress. >> let me interrupt you a second.
okay. go ahead. i'm sorry. >> tonight i was on my way to the grocery store when i saw a male approximately 5'11", to 6'2", casually walking in the rain looking into homes. i pulled my vehicle over and called sbd non-emergency phone number. i told the dispatcher what i witnessed and the dispatch took note of my location and the suspect -- i think it says possibly "fled." >> okay. now the word "suspect," that's his word. you -- were you telling him to put certain words to describe the person we now know at trayvon martin? >> no, i didn't tell him any words to use. i told him to put in writing what he had already explained to me and to be as detailed as he could. >> okay. let me stop you a second.
a place for him to sign and a place for you to sign as a witness. is that correct? >> yes. >> i think we're going to go to page 2 but give me a second to catch up to you. >> joining us now, msnbc legal analyst lisa bloom and attorney and radio host midwin charles. midwin, the description of the person that george zimmerman says he saw. he describes him male, approximately 5'11", to 6'2". he then says, "the dispatcher took note of the suspect." he's talking a lot like a police officer. >> he really is. i think one of the things everybody's talked about with respect to george zimmerman is this sort of zeal and excitement that he had had with regard to trayvon martin as though he is a police officer. we already know from the 911 call that he was directed -- instructed not follow trayvon martin, yet he seemed to feel put upon to do this and step into the shoes of someone who is
in law enforcement. which goes -- speaks volumes in terms of why he even decided to follow hill in the first place. >> i mean, lisa, do you think there is they significance to the way that george zimmerman sounded? when police officers arrived on the scene, the fact this in a lot of ways he talks like them, do you think that added maybe to the perception on their part that he was perhaps the victim and the person they saw lying in the grass was the "perpt traitor." >> he speaks "cop speak." "i holstered my fairearm." he also remains unnaturally calm. he just shot and killed a 17-year-old boy. this is immediately afterwards and he recites very calmly about the facts what happened. you don't hear him asking, is he okay, what happened, or if he already knows that he's deceased. oh, my god within can't believe what's happened. and compare that to the 911 callers who were also strangers to both of them who were in
hysterics at the idea that someone had just died right out in front of their homes, crying, had to be held on the line with the 911 operator for a long time consoling them. george zimmerman, very, very calm. >> i want to zero in on one other thing. because he also gave the detective, doris singleton, the first officer to interview him after being read his miranda rights. he describes a lot of dialogue. he says trayvon martin said to him, you got a problem, homey? sort of weird language for a teenager. he tells him you're going to die tonight. he tells him at some point in all of this conversation he could see neighbors. there are two neighbors who both went outside but they haven't heard them testify to any of this dialogue. is that significant? >> i think it is significant. it goes to his credibility as to what actually happened on that day. if the two of them were engaged in this sort of conversation, you would think that eyewitnesses would have spoken to that. but no one saw this
conversation. and if their altercation was so kind of strife, why would they talk at all? you would expect them to kind of just go right into it and go right into fighting. so it is a little bit questionable, as to whether it actually happened. >> lisa, do you think the jury will read anything into the specificity of the dialogue that mr. zimmerman is sort of narrating very dramatic fashion? do you think that aids in his credibility or you think the jurors will think, how did you remember all this information, all these specific sghordz. >> this is the part of the trial where the prags osecution is go to go over line by line everything george zimmerman said in his handwritten statement which has just been put before the jury via this witness and the police tape they made with him. they'll try to show inconsistencies in the defendant's statement, just as george zimmerman's done with some of the prosecution witnesses. that's going to be the key to
the prosecution case. >> midwin charles, lisa bloom, stay with us. more of the trial of george zimmerman after this. at angie's list, you'll find reviews on everything from home repair to healthcare written by people just like you. no company can pay to be on angie's list, so you can trust what you're reading. angie's list is like having thousands of close neighbors, where i can go ask for personal recommendations. that's the idea. before you have any work done, check angie's list. find out why more than two million members count on angie's list. angie's list -- reviews you can trust. i love you, angie. sorry, honey. beneful medley's... ...in tuscan, romana, and mediterranean style varieties. just mix it in... ...and take play to new places. three cans in every pack. beneful medley's
get a free sample and try for yourself. we're listening to the second degree murder trial of george zimmerman, detective doris singleton, the first detective to interview zimmerman on the night of the shooting of trayvon martin is still on the stand. >> -- on top of my head and told the officer where on my person my firearm was holstered. the officer handcuffed me and disarmed me. the officer then placed me in the back of his vehicle. >> you signed that last page also like you had the prior four pages -- or three pages? >> yes. all of them. >> now, defendant continuously refers to trayvon martin -- person we now know as trayvon martin as a suspect.
correct? >> he did in the statement. >> in that written statement. in the prior statements he did not. the prior audio statements, he didn't refer to him as the suspect, did he? >> no, he did not refer to him as a suspect in anything but this. >> all right. whether police officers are talking about a person they suspect of being a criminal, committing a crime, do they refer to them as suspect? >> yes, we do, if we suspect them of a crime, they are a suspect. >> your honor, i don't know if now would be a time to recess? >> it would be a good time to recess for lunch. i'm rejoined by lisa bloom and msnbc legal analyst, as well as midwin charles, attorney and radio host. lisa, talk about the specificity of what george zimmerman told investigator singleton? are we seeing because of now how this is unfolding why the prosecution put on two witnesses who seem to be defense witnesses -- john good and jonathan minolo, who testify to
what they heard on that night. because their testimony lacked a lot of these details. >> i think the prosecution put on those witnesses even though they were on balance better for the defense because the prosecution has to seek justice, not just a conviction. if they didn't put the them, the defense would put them on and imply that the prosecution was hiding the ball. that's why they did it. but with george zimmerman, detectives always ask this level of specificity because the devil's in the details. anybody can tell a very general story and make it sound like self-defense but they have to go second by second, go along a map, use a timeline, ask detailed questions, and ask the same questions over and over again to ascertain whether george zimmerman, or anybody who's being questioned by the police, is telling the truth or not. >> midwin charles, let's get into a couple of those specifics. bushes. the idea, according to george zimmerman with, that trayvon martin jumped out from behind bushes, something that the investigators say there weren't really bushes in that area. the second one, slamming his head against the pavement.
he's repeatedly stated his head was banged against the pavement, but again, this wasn't testified to by people. he said he could see neighbors coming out. that wasn't there with the previous witnesses. again, this all goes to his credibility. whenever you have a prior inconsistent statement like here, it goes to his credibility. is he really telling the truth? george zimmerman is the only person that really knows what happened on that night. other person, trayvon martin, is dead. if he says on one hand there were bushes, but yet you have the police officer saying, listen, i didn't see any bushes there, it begs the question as to whether or not he is telling the truth. with respect to his head being slammed on the ground, you have to ask yourself whether his injuries are consistent with someone who's head was slammed on concrete. remember, the position witnehys testified he didn't require any stitches. so was his head slammed on the
ground? just a laceration? once those pieces of the puzzle start being put together you get the whole story of what happened on that night. >> lisa, we are also seeing the map of the community where the shooting took place, the route george zimmerman took and the route he said trayvon martin took. could that also factor in either for the defense or prosecution the way he was able to specifically map out where he was and where he says trayvon martin was? >> yes. we've seen that with other witnesses as well. that map has been coming in over and over again since opening statements, where everybody was, the positioning, where the residents were who called in, who heard some of what was going on, some of them saw what was going on. that's going to be key to the case. >> midwin charles and nbc's lisa bloom, thank you, both. after the break, the biggest changes on coverage with the affordable care act are set to begin three months from today but yet many americans are still confused about policies and have yet to sign up. there are keys for those who need them. we'll look at health care reform
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married to morty kaufman. [ lee ] now that i'm getting older some things are harder to do. this is not a safe thing to do. be careful babe. there should be some way to make it easier [ doorbell rings ] let's open it up and see what's cookin'. oh i like that. look at this it's got a handle on it. i don't have to climb up. this yellow part up here really catches a lot of the dust. did you notice how clean it looks? morty are you listening? morty?
[ morty ] i'm listening! i want you to know the george zimmerman trial is in rehe ses and meanwhile, it's been one year since the supreme court upheld the affordable care act. in exactly three months, americans will get their first glimpse of obama care when the law's health care exchange open for enrollment. even before that important date arrives, the obama administration and its health care allies are doing everything they can to get americans to sign up for coverage. the fate of the law depends on it. the white house is employing new tactics to promote obama care. recruiting local officials to help promote and carry out the law in states where governors who hostile toward ait and reaching out to professional sports teams and even celebrities to help bring people into the insurance market. even with all of the salesmanship, a recent poll
shows over 4 in 10 americans aren't even sure obama care is the you law of the land. a poll last week showed 43% the uninsured, people who stand to benefit most from the law, don't know that they have to buy insurance next year. republicans who are still opposed to the law are trying to capitalize on the public's confusion and use the exchange's deadline to turn americans off obama care. republican senator pat roberts used this week's republican address to challenge the law. >> too little is known about the exchanges. the fear is that only the sick will pay to join the exchange without young healthy people to foot the bill. then all costs will further skyrocket. we must put an end to the fear and uncertainty. it is a train wreck, folks. and we have to get america out of the way. >> but in the midst of this partisan fighting, millions of americans are without health insurance. before the health exchanges open, non-profit initiatives are playing a big role at filling in the gaps. one of those groups -- the
national association of free and charitable clinics is teaming up with msnbc's remverend al sharpton on wednesday at a health care fair in new orleans. michael dyson, rhyme grim, carrie brown, and fred forter. joining us now from new orleans is nicole lamereux from free and charitable clinics. i'll start with you. can you tell us how many people ho will be served at this free clinic on wednesday and what's the importance given we're 92 days out from obama care exchanges kicking in? >> we are expecting anywhere from 1,100 to 1,500 patients to show up with us in new orleans. so many people don't understand what the affordable care act means, what it means to them, how to get involved. in a state like louisiana that's
not going to expand medicaid, we have patients who desperately need health care. it is going to be a very busy and important day. >> there are 15,000 uninsured patients who were treated at these clinics from the national association of free clinics since 2009. that's a rate of 900 to 1,400 a day. frank, you guys are the ones telling the president to snap out of it. what suggestions would you guys have since you are advising the president to get people to understand what's in the affordable care act and to get people to sign up? >> i'm glad to see they are doing everything they're doing. i think that there's probably more that the president himself can do to help lay the groundwork here. but what is interesting to me is that this is something that was -- it is the law of the land. the supreme court has validated the law of the land and all these efforts that the administration is doing to try to bring in the nfl and the nba are being opposed by house republicans, as if promoting the
laws of the country are somehow unpatriotic. and they're just trying to prevent this thing from seeming like it is a reality, which contributes to a lot of the confusion that i think is evident in the polls that you showed. >> given the fact that it is not going to be overturned, 38 votes or 37 votes, it is not going anywhere. supreme court has ratified it. do republicans have some larger strategy other than just talking negatively against the law? >> they are trying to delegitimize it. they haven't succeeded in other realm realms. this is what a lot of democrats said in 2009, that they needed republican votes for this law, or this bill, because they would never assume ownership of it. we've seen, it's been four years. we're seeing exactly that happen. i think even though it is the law of the land, that will not stop mitch mcconnell and john cornyn from writing a letter to the nfl and saying don't embrace this because you'll be viewed as
partisan. this is sort of what our prediction was back in '09, you needed republicans. they weren't going to play along and they still won't. >> even in the states -- we have governors who are up for re-election, opposing the medicaid expansion. scott walker, in wisconsin, nikki haley, rick perry firmly against the law. then governors elected in 2010, some of them saying we would like to implement this law because in -- when it is time for re-election for a lot of these governors in 2014, rejecting that money might be a negative for their re-election. >> you saw that they recognized the benefits of the law for their particular state and they moved forward with it. i think you'll see a lot of consumers doing that come this fall. people -- there's going to be a big word of mouth effect that goes on. some say hey, i just signed up for these exchanges and my insurance coverage is $300. like for a month? but no.
$300 for the whole year. once people hear that, then they're going to start googling and calling, how do i get health insurance for $300? it is important to remember that this is not new. in the '60s republicans spent the first couple years after medicare and medicaid were passed trying to kill it in the crib before it becomes this popular and engrained thing that then everybody embraces. in order to kill it down the road, you have to do things like say you're trying to strengthen it. >> no real political cost for opposing something that really benefits people who are lower income. >> it is a freebie. they had are killing it in the crib. now they are trying to kill it at the crib. >> lastly, we want to give people an understanding of why this is so important. can you please just tell people why it so important to participate and support what you are doing on wednesday. >> i think what happens here is 1 in 5 in louisiana run insured. these are people. we can talk about politics all day long but people need help. we're asking that everyone join us and stand and build a healthy
america one patient at a time. >> nicole, thank you very much from new orleans. after the break, whistle-blower or leaker, patriot or traitor. regardless of which side of the edward snowden debate is on, one clear is clear about his revelations -- america has broadened its surveillance net since 2011. we'll discuss what it all means for america's diplomatic relations when james bamford joins us next on "now." distribution systems," "and one of the most efficient trucking networks," "with safe, experienced drivers." "we work directly with manufacturers," "eliminating costly markups," "and buy directly from local farmers in every region of the country." "when you see our low prices, remember the wheels turning behind the scenes, delivering for millions of americans, everyday. "dedication: that's the real walmart"
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world and the united states that there is mass unlawful interception of their communications, far beyond anything that happened under nixon. >> on the other side, house minority leader nancy pelosi. she took the opposite viewpointing to the damage done to the u.s. by snowden. >> i think that anybody who thought he was a hero to begin with, now that he's threatening in any event to share information with russian and china, if in fact he has any information, i think that should disabuse anybody of the notion that he is a hero. >> pelosi's reaction came after snowden's latest leak, this time to a german magazine which revealed the u.s. spied on its european allies by bugging an eu building in washington and tapping into its commuter network. many allies weren't pleased with the revelations with the french president saying we cannot accept this kind of behavior. at a press conference in tanzania this morning, president obama sought to down play the controversy suggesting this is something practiced by all countries, not just the u.s.
in other words, countries spy on each other. >> i guarantee that you in european capitals there are people who are interested in if not what i had for breakfast, in at least what my talk points might be should i end up meeting with their leaders. that's how intelligence services operate. >> and joining us now from washington, james bamford, author of "the shadow factory, the ultra secret nsa from 9/11 to the eavesdropping on america." his nsa story also graces the latest cover of the issue of "wired" magazine. james, thanks for being with us. >> my pleasure. >> james, answer that question for us. we have only heard about the spying that goes one way from the u.s. toward our european allies. but is it true that the same kind of intelligence is gathered by european and other allies, russians, et cetera, against us? >> well, it's true that they would like to collect intelligence from us and it is true that they try to collect intelligence from us. the difference is we have
basically the nuclear weapon equivalent of eavesdropping machine and they have the equivalent of an army howitzer. so we have far more money to spend on eavesdropping, far more technical capability, far more personnel, far more access and they are fairly limited when it comes to all of those things. so although they try to spy on the u.s., the u.s. has enough capabilities to pretty. much deny a lot of the activities or deny them the capabilities for spying on us while we have enormous capabilities to spy on them. >> then james, given that we do have technological superior or the, have the revelations by snowden, which sort of give our allies and adversaries a window into our technical superior or the, have his revelations put americans at risk? >> i don't think they really put americans at risk. i think what it's done is pretty much confirm what most of the people in europe have assumed all along, especially in the european governments, that the
u.s. spies, that in my very first book i wrote, "the puzzle palace," i wrote how the u.s. was doing this -- the predecessor to the nsa was doing this in 1921 in france spying on a meeting of europeans in paris. so it's been going on for a very long time. what is very unusual is not that these revelations have come out, because revelations like this come out every now and then. it is that you actually have the revelations backed up by actual inside nsa documents. >> well, i want to come out to the panel. michael, the lexington herald leader had an interesting inin. "snowden could have taken his information to an organization or politician in this country who was willing to stand with him as he blew the whistle. instead, he took our dirty laundry to our enemies who have no problem lording it over us and using it against us.
when you give the enemy an advantage over your homeland, you become a benedict arnold who also thought he was a true patriot. could that also apply to giving information to our allies who can lord it over us? >> i was just reading your e-mail to reggie mantel yesterday. i'm sorry. don't have any expert -- look, i'm torn on this. on one hand, they call martin luther king jr. benedict arnold. there's been a whole history -- albert einstein. we've spied on our own citizens, for that matter, and done some horrible things. at the same time, i'm not trying to celebrate mr. snowden as some kind of einstein/king. i think if he felt comfortable with the fact that america would treat him justly maybe he would stand for the justice that could be meted out here. at the same time, somebody can say if you want to be compared to the greats in our history, they've been willing to do what they did and then stand for the consequences right here in america. so it is really tough. >> i think the line was a lot clearer when what he had ward snowden was talking about was the collection of metadata of
american citizens, when he was talking about e-mail or telephone data of americans. now we've gone into this other territory. we're talking about it is stuff that could really undermine our diplomatic relations. does it now seem less clear that what he was doing was straight-ahead whistle blowing? >> he's now in a political power struggle with the u.s. government so he's going to use the political tools that are at his disposal. like you you said, if we hadn't tortured bradley manning, we'd have a better case of saying stay with us and go through our system of due process here. the president said, look. this is what intelligence services do. well, had this is what competent intelligent services do and ours has become incompetent because it is leaking like a sieve. the reason is this eavesdropping that's overclassification, it is un-american. you have the people who are working in it, the americans who are working in it, repulsed by it and, whether it is bradley manning, snowden, whether it is all of these other leakers, they are pushing this stuff out into the public because they disagree
with it. >> i think the obama administration would disagree that they tortured bradley manning. >> but they tortured him. i mean made him stand naked for a year in a cold cell. >> they would disagree. they are competent to reach into our lives at every moment or incompetent and can't handle it. >> they can't keep it secret. james bamford, one sort of exit question. the claim on the nsa side is that they are trying to really stop catastrophic potential attacks on our infrastructure, et cetera. can you explain what it is that they say they are protecting against? >> well, they're trying to protect against supposedly the russians and the chinese launching cyber attacks on us. the irony here is that the director of nsa is also the head of the cyber command who's supposed to protect the u.s. government communications, and yet u.s. communications and technical infrastructure and he has one of his own people that's going out and causing probably
the most elaborate leak of information in years. >> well, james bamford, thank you very much. sorry we're short on time. we'll be right back after this. ♪ for a strong bag that grips the can... get glad forceflex. small change, big difference. the ones getting involved and staying engaged. they're not afraid to question the path they're on. because the one question they never want to ask is "how did i end up here?" i started schwab for those people. people who want to take ownership of their investments, like they do in every other aspect of their lives. ... you thought wrong.
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