more and more a minority unfortunately that's back and forth again the last administration realize that the majority of cuban americans want to normalization the normalized and when you normalize you can talk. and i want to tell you from my experience in cuba when the united states use sugar instead of a hammer things change in cuba in the way that the united states wanted them. were like i can't go backwards fast enough in the future to show you what what's going on in cuba now. it seems that in order to protect lection prospects in florida there is a little bit of a game that's being played with a very very very reactionary cubans who are disrespected more and more every day by the cuban community since the western commentators compare this new president maybe l.d.s. now to now. and i know that you visited the soviet union during its reformist years of glasnost and perestroika reach as inspiring as they may be now in hindsight it
ultimately led to the collapse of not only the system to the soviet system but also the collapse of the country do you think that's likely a likely scenario for cuba if the new president indeed pursues the reform agenda or if he doesn't so that was a question that i was asking myself and i was very very curious because of the half a century that i spend cuba because of my love for the cuban people i wanted to observe this firsthand but i didn't want to observe it from the back of the pack and so i had. asked the cuban government to allow me to come inside as they were making their deliberations as they were passing the power in to observe this basically like a fly. and. they didn't answer me i had the choice to be in cuba or be here in moscow for some very important thing this past week and i chose to come here to moscow instead of going to cuba well we
welcome back to worlds apart then john albert the american journalist and documentary filmmaker mr alfred day just before the break you were saying that you had a choice of either going to cuba or of coming to moscow and each and i know that you have something under the table to show as i do have something i have my my my props here. and you see this yeah and i can see the name of legendary russian hockey player who just lost fifty seven. why do you have a. look at this and obviously we have your name here as well but so so so when i was growing up. i didn't want to be a journalist i can tell you how i became a journalist but it was completely accidental my dream was to be
a hockey player. but my reality was that i still don't get i wasn't good enough. i was always very enthusiastic but on town that hockey player but my friend i'm working with on a number of projects one is the first and last hockey game ever on the north pole can you skate really well and you got here because next year around this time is basically to call attention to environmental crisis of the north pole and also this sort of political tensions the arctic countries the vatican. there's one more can remember what it is they're all getting together. i usually do political journalism and i think. right off the bat i can say that this is if you're an unusual experience or have russians and americans doing anything constructive because from my experience the only big but it's good that you guys can do something in the in the current environment and i think so and you've been to war
and. i feel. because of our shared experience and because i'm looking in your eyes i can tell that. when when you go to war as a reporter there's something that happens inside you and it changes you as a person and it compels you more or less for the rest of your life to look for other ways to resolve issues you visited a number of floor zones but did the one that you remember the most would be your coverage of the first gulf war for which you were actually fired from b.c. . it was clearly and correct me if i'm wrong you were specifically fired because you it's a billion death toll inflicted by the americans that was clearly an act of censorship but i think from my experience at least censorship in different come countries. realize in different patterns have you figured out how it works in the united
states. you know it it's affected me in different ways i've had the misfortune of being blacklisted twice i was blacklisted for public television not for war coverage but for a documentary about health care because the documentary pointed the finger at the sort of greedy financial interests that were keeping americans from getting the best health care. that was it for public television. but the sort of interesting thing about the united states is that sometimes the door opens and door closes and the door open to n.b.c. and i was the only independent reporter to work for any of the commercial networks i had total editorial control of my reports which is i have more editorial control than anybody here at r.t. has i think there were a number of circumstances general electric which is. a big powerful country
company a company that has a lot of military industrial interests bought and b.c. and from that moment. the gangplank was out for me but i think that i may i may be mistaken but judging from your previous interviews i think it was more specific you went to iraq you filmed the shooters that were you were not supposed to sell me you managed to smuggle it into a back into the united states in your socks you brought it to the n.b.c. executives and what did they tell you. that every time i go to the third world i make trouble for them and they're tired of it but if you actually look at the footage what was the problem with your behavior over the actual material that they hear and in fact. the regular news staff was devastated by this and they had all supported me they had seen the footage and were proud that somebody from their team had gotten this despite saddam's attempts to censor me you know we
had three babysitters there were three pages of rules and regulations we broke every single rule they tried to kill me on the way out of the country put a gun to my head and spent five minutes trying to pull the trigger to kill me and i got the stuff back and everybody was proud of me and what was there what was on the there was on the film i mean basically the smart bombs were not smart this was what we were being told in the united states during the war that this was the first bloodless war in history the first scientific war in history. and let me tell you when any country believes that they can make war and not hurt people they become even more dangerous and so it was it was crucial to show these reports to the american did you actually show it to the american people when they should have seen it during the war one of the tragedies of the war and it's it's studied in journalism classes there were a number of hand wringing retrospectives about the way in which the press had not fulfilled its duty to the country during the war and they didn't well you know what's interesting to me is that americans like to use the. examples of the first
and second iraqi contains as something that they regret but i think. any of those things have been repeated recently for example the united states military has just taken over the city of. isis used to claim as its capital it was taken by a very very have the aerial bombardment. practically no building is left standing in that city there independent reports of thousands of corpses rotting under the rubble and there is still very very little if any coverage on the american that's for x. doesn't that suggest that the system that you encounter baghdad is still in operation these days i can't talk about that because i haven't been to syria i can't talk about those reports because. i don't watch the news and when i spend my whole day doing what i'm doing my i don't know about you i want to watch a hockey game on t.v. i don't think i've watched. cast in twenty years. i didn't even watch my own
reports because as soon as i finish with my own reports i was on an airplane going to the next war so i can't comment about that i thought that the way in which the press was treated during the second gulf war because i was embedded for two months in baghdad was respectful was honest and was transparent and it was the three hundred sixty degree difference from the first gulf war first gulf war. the press was treated like a bunch of dogs in the alley you've been to numerous war zones but you decided against going to syria or for that matter to libya why is that why didn't you want to go there. make a calculus. before i decide to go someplace i would like. i'm happy to take a risk and happy to risk my i can't say i'm happy but i will risk my life if i think that the report that i make is going to change something. and that's the sort
of sophisticated combinations of things want to have to be able to get to where i want to go i have to be able to operate with some degree of freedom people's minds have to be flexible enough so that if i come back and i say listen this is what i think the truth really is that the listen to me and i need an outlet and i don't have any of those conditions. when i stop working for n.b.c. i began to do documentaries and sort of let's get on the plane the bells ringing over in syria i'm going to be the first person in the front the first person back in those days i could beat anyone in the world sure you're good but i could beat you but documentaries is different and documentaries is a long slow or thoughtful process and and there are only so many places that you can show them and we basically make one documentary every two years every three years in the case of cuba took me forty five years the conditions and i felt bad you know because in order to take this risk you have to believe that there is
something about the way in which you see the world that is important for other people to know otherwise it's insanity to go to these places and you have to have that burning. burn burn inside you so the first couple of times wars happened without me. like you had to tie me to the mast because but i didn't have any place to show it you know you weren't there but they were. a lot of coverage of both the syrian and libyan conflict and it was. very much split along the ideological lines because i could see the reports of my western calling for example from libya voice with their own this aims are in the same building working you know from the same desk but they would show something totally totally different i mean the reality that i wouldn't even recognize and i'm sure they would say the same things about my reports we are now in the age of propaganda war
a supposed truth post do you think you could even adapt to this kind of working environment i did pretty pretty good in egypt so i was in the square in egypt for the revolution. it's pretty good film it played on h.b.o. we didn't win the oscar but we got on the shortlist for the oscar awards and so made a film from i don't know if you appreciate. like my type of way of doing things it was a quintessential film the way in which we do it very well received so. the opportunity still do exist and you know it's also our responsibilities as reporters to. try and be as honest as possible to not have an agenda. when there's lots of forces point to this when polis i want to it's not about
having an agenda i think from what i see at least i think many western reporters they come to cuba or they come to syria with the preconceived notion of what the country is and they do their reports from the balconies of the hotel we call a balcony buzzards a little whatever i mean. things to do more things to see where they stayed the same so you know listen. the first report i ever did for n.b.c. . was the first time i'd ever been in a war zone and i was up in lang's on vietnam the chinese were on the hills shooting at anything that moved and i like a moron i'm walking down the street there with my vietnamese buddies in the church church so you know what i did. everybody else runs for cover i grab the microphone and i do with the end up because that's all it ever. existed and so i said i'm telling them what was obvious i'm here i'm lying son that people are shooting at me and my name is john alpert and i'm working for n.b.c.
news i looked at that and i said you know what that's the last stand up on there but i never i never did another one i was so ashamed of myself because all i was doing was copycatting you know they all wear the same clothes they wear the trench coats in the winter they wear the safari suits and they walk around with briefcases and question what the heck is in their briefcases you know what it is speak up and they spend the whole day waiting for the sun to get into the right position they've got somebody standing there with the tray to reflect and they're there on the balcony well i think so shame on them and here awards to people who go do something different and it's and it's not just the american reporters seen the russian reporters i've seen people like this all over the world and there are good reporters from every single country who will get dirty and will try to understand what the people are doing well. definitely and that i just. a minute left and i want to ask you perhaps a philosophical question but still i think much of the global tensions still
centered around those concepts of freedom democracy tyranny development human flourishing and what always strikes me is how differently they are interpreted in different countries what freedom means to an american is very different from what freedom means to a cuban or to a syrian or even to russians for that matter do you think difference is a genuine do you think we will average be able to drive. you know some common understanding of what freedom really. i think it's always good to have differences. but we can't let those differences separate us and what we need to do is. even even though we might look at the word. differently we need to. walk through the world holding hands and talk to each other about our differences like we're doing here today. you know mindful of being branded as a kremlin sympathizer because i think in this day and age even appearing on this network may get. anybody who knows me knows that i've always been my own person and
people have respected me for them that's why they invite me to come back time and time again and that's why this project about the first and last hockey game at the north pole which has been indorsed by the united nations that's the other well i certainly do it together and i'll teach you how to skate you won't learn how to skate well but i'll teach you a well i will definitely try my best but in any case i hold that we can discuss your next project let's say in a year's time in this very studious thank you for being here today i invite our viewers to keep this conversation going on our social media pages as for me hope to see you again same place same time here in the wilds of part. of.
saudi arabia top diplomat warns qatar that its government faces collapse unless it starts. between. the iran deal during his address to the us congress. we should not abandon its. substantial. functions. alleged bodyguard of osama bin laden is found to have been collecting benefits in germany for over two decades.
government intercepted during the recent. us claimed all of its missiles hit their targets. and we will return live from moscow with a full. time but right now. what to expect from upcoming talks u.s. and south korea with north korea's kim jong. hello and welcome to crossfire all things considered i'm peter lavelle after sixty eight years the two koreas are on the verge of signing a peace treaty a donald trump summit is in the works is peace coming to the korean peninsula well
it's possible the foreign policy blog and the corporate its media are less enthusiastic after all conflict is there a business model. crosstalk in the korean peninsula i'm joined by my guest. washington he's a senior fellow at the institute for china america studies also in washington we have john merrow he is former chief of the north east asia division of the bureau of intelligence and research at the u.s. state department as well as author of korea the peninsular origins of the war and in new york we cross to daniel as our he is an author and freelance journalist who writes frequently about the middle east eastern europe and the us constitution right gentlemen cross-like rules in effect that means you can jump in anytime you want i always appreciate so let me go to you first in washington if you look at the mainstream media and particularly the cable stations all the focus on the korean
peninsula is directed towards this summit that may have with the north korean leader but really i think it's what's more important happening this week and it's the two koreas coming together how does this change the situation on the peninsula if north korea and south korea can find some kind of meaningful and let me stress meaningful reproach moment go ahead in washington. let me in response to your question laid out right away that the real credit for the what the situation the opportunity that we have today is because of president mungy in. in south korea you know if we had a the same all the conservative south korean government in place today what would have happened is kim jong un would have gone through with his condense testing schedule and then after that he would have gone straight into his bunker emerging from time to time with grave threats and snarly garley threats to blow everything
up the fact of the matter is that mungy him is the person who has been able to tease kim jong il kim jong un out into the sunshine and has open and shown him a pathway to global integration and as well as not south reconciliation. in the south korean progressive government has a lead this process of free conciliation which has dramatically altered the dynamics on the on the korean peninsula of course the olympics also have helped and therefore it is north and south they extend that they leave the process that they would have dragged other parties along including the united states credit allies with the peninsula parties ok john let me go to you more or less the same question here because the dynamic changes considerably if there is a peace between the two koreas after sixty eight years they start coming to some kind of defense and security measures that both can accept then regime change as it
were that we hear so many people talking about in in the washington foreign policy blob that kind of is taken off the table because that would not be in south korea's interests go ahead john in washington. right peter well i think i think you overstated it a little bit i do give president moon a lot of credit but i think the main credit i never thought i would say that i know not only belongs to donald trump i know you're going to say that. this this this this is this is the man who said he he wanted nothing more than to sit down and have a hamburger with kim jong un and looks like he's going to get his chance right now there are apparently still cia people liaison people behind in pyongyang at least according to the south korean media and people are hard at work and mr pump aoe is the guy that's been running this. formerly from his post
as cia director but hopefully in a few days as secretary of state so i think i would agree the president deserves a lot of credit and certainly with a progressive government a lot of things are possible that weren't underpass conservative regimes but i think we have to give president trump his do as well and i just i just hope things go ok it's a topsy topsy turvy world exactly and you know and i'm very happy that this process is going on let me go to daniel i don't care who gets the credit i think that is really low on the hierarchy a bit of an important see are getting peace on that peninsula where you have the most heavily armed border in the world after sixty eight years of considerable american military presence is there and the chinese have come in and in ways that i think we'll find out in the future they were very constructive here it's the result that counts most importantly go ahead daniel well. let me speak up for ken john
i think it's played his cards extremely well. is not in the door a political endorsement of him by any means but he is a very smart yep player yeah and he has done. he's you know he sort of kind of you know seize control of the opening seize the opening that that trump accorded him and has really run of the i think it's it's a pretty impressive performance ok let's go back to washington so i think what's really important here i mean it's good to get down to really the details here because we have a do you need arise south korea i'm sorry korean peninsula means north and south so that means that american nukes would not be allowed there i mean this is the kind of opening that i think the north korean leader was looking for he's looking for a grand bargain and you know what folks he's been asking for a grand bargain for a while and i think he had to go through all of the theatrical of the missiles and
the launches and you know all of the heated rhetoric back and forth this was the opening that he was looking for and it was a south korean leader that opened the door and we got a nod from donald trump i mean we'll find out where it goes so you know it really gets down to the details of what that means because we know all along north korea wants security guarantees maybe russia and china can be guarin tours of that go ahead sort of been in washington you're absolutely correct on that i mean the devil is in the details in terms of how do you go about staging nuclear solution in terms of how that process works out the mechanics of that process but you're absolutely correct on that point with regard to denuclearize the nuclearization that it is not just a north korean affair it needs to be a peninsula fair let me throw out a useful principle which might be useful. both in terms of denuclearization as well as in reduction of conventional forces in terms on the peninsula and in terms of
the hostilities that are there in terms of denuclearization we're talking of course complete verifiable irreversible nuclearization of north korea they can have a civil nuclear program which we can. civil nuclear program which will be very intrusively watched over by the i.a.e.a. full scope see if guards etc etc but what that means for south korea is that of course they have this civil of very extensive civil nuclear program but there will be no strategic forces on their territory and they want to even be an extended deterrent to south korea provided by the us so long as there is complete nuclearization of the north now the parallel fact which north and south korea frankly need to work out because denuclearization is a sensually a topic of discussion between north korea and the united states with regard to conventional forces what the disposition of the end of the day needs to be that the
peninsula is is kind of insulated from the larger the geopolitics off the north east asia south the south korea has already shown that it is not in not terribly interested in getting into things like a regional ballistic missile shield well it's not interesting i'm going to eilat for a line we're going to find we're going to find actually let's yeah we're going to find out just how far the pentagon wants to go along with it john let me go to you because if you get if you look at the mainstream media and the punditry that we are bombarded with all of the time and the mainstream media is really not on board here is it just because they don't want to see succeed at anything or in the military industrial complex i mean south korea in there and that region of the world is a nice. trough for arms in the u.s. as a vast military establishment there that needs to be paid for i mean is it a combination of these things here and go ahead john in washington.