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tv   Fareed Zakaria GPS  CNN  December 15, 2013 7:00am-8:01am PST

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>> dana, amy, ramesh, thank you for joining us. thank you for watching "state of the union." i'm candy crowley in washington. if you missed any part of the show, find us on itunes. "fareed zakaria gps" is next. >> this is "gps" the global public square. welcome to all of you in the united states and around the world. i'm fareed zakaria. we'll start today's show with a simple question, are america's kids falling behind the rest of the world? the recent release of international test scores suggests the answer might be yes. i have a powerhouse panel to talk about the problem and solutions, former new york city schools chancellor joel klein, teach for america's wendy kopf, sal kan, one of the most innovative educators of the world and tom friedman of "the new york times." then, to understand the protests that have roiled ukraine over the past weeks you have to go
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back a bit, to 1654. and an execution in the her mitt kingdom, why did north korea's cokim jong-un have his n uncle killed and what does it mean for the world? finally, how well do you know your world? you'll be surprised at what you don't know. but first, here's my take. in the midst of the extraordinary specticle of nelson mandela's funeral in a stadium with some 90,000 mourners, including more than 90 heads of government, a small gesture caught the world's attention, barack obama moved to greet dilma rousef of brazil. on his way he shook hands with the person on her right, the man was raul castro, president of cuba. remember, the united states does not have diplomatic relations
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with cuba, and has a tight trade embargo in place against the island nation, so many wondered whether this handshake was the beginning of a great shift in policy. i hope so. let's begin by asking whether the existing policy is working. in 1960 the united states enacted an embargo against cuba. its purpose was simple and explicit, regime change. did it work? well, until he retired from the presidency in 2008, fidel castro was the longest serving head of government in the world. surely that's about as powerful evidence as one can get but the policy did not work, and is not working. the truth is that cuba's miserable economy is almost entirely its own fault. the castro regime has coupled political repression with communist economic policies and the result predictably has been total failure and stagnation, but things are changing in cuba. the government has been experimenting with opening up element of the economy, by some
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estimates about 20% of the cuban economy is now in the private sector. the best path forward for washington is one that has been recommended by many experts from who are say castaneda, the former next january foreign minister to human rights watch. the united states should shift from a policy of regime change in cuba, which has not worked to one that promotes reform and human rights aggressively. president obama should offer the cuban government a series of steps that would relax restrictions on trade and travel but only if they are matched by real economic and political reforms in cuba. let the cuban people know, for example, that if its government were to free all political prisoners, the united states would be willing to relax the embargo. americans should have greater faith in the power of markets, trade and travel to eat away at the cuban dictatorship, strengthen cuban civil society,
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including private business, and thus change the character of the country. washington has tried isolation, sanctions and embargoes against cuba for more than five decades, with dismal results. why not try capitalism for five years? let's get started. -- captions by vitac -- an absolute wake-up call for america, that's what u.s. education secretary arne duncan called the recent release of test scores showing how american kids compared with their peers around the world. the test is called the program for international student assessment or pisa. 17th of 34 countries in reading, 21st in science, 26th in math which doesn't look good. how do we improve them? i have a terrific panel, joel klein is the former chancellor of new york city's school
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system, wendy kopf, teach for all and sal kan is one of the most innovative educators in the world and the founder of kan academy and tom friedman the three-time pulitzer prize winning columnist for the new york times. joel you've seen these results for years. what do you think is the big takeaway? >> the clear takeaway is we're stuck and not getting the results we need with our kids and we're going to pay a human price if we don't change, change quickly and rapidly. two points people should understand, pisa tests the kind of skills that the market is going to demand, the kind of higher order complex thinking that in a global high-tech economy our children need to have if they're going to succeed, and a failure to have those skills is going to mean they're not going to be able to get the jobs they want. the world is changing so rapidly. that is the first takeaway and
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the second takeaway, this is not a problem of poor children or chirp who grow up in deprived environments. this is a problem across the board in america, our highest performing kids are not remotely getting the results that other countries are getting. we're losing by 2:1 at the top of this challenge as well as at every other level below it. it's no longer acceptable. we really need to change, fareed and change quickly and dramatically. tinkering is not going to do it. >> tom, you went to the highest performing school in the world with wendy. what was your takeaway going to the school in shanghai as to the secret of their success is? >> the school is grades one through five, fareed and the most interesting thing about it, i went looking for the secret. what is the secret? how do you all do this? do you have the kids stand on their head in the morning, do they hold their breath and we
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found the pig secret, there is no secret. they just execute across a system the best practices that we all know are the things differentiating in education, giving teachers an enormous amount of time to work on their own professional development to collaborate and learn from one another, teachers there teach about 70% of the time and work on their own skills about 30% of the time. they work intensively with parents, talked to parents three times a week, and they tutor parents so they're better able to help their kids with their homework and they have a culture of learning, where kids are expected to come to school ready to learn. now what you have when you have a systematic solution like this, fareed, is you make the weakest teachers really much better across a wide system so you deliver a consistent education, and you're able to direct your best teachers at the hardest
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kids and the most important thing about this school wendy and i went to, 40% of the kids came from migrant families. this was not some elite school what of so. >> sal, you're not as worried i think when we talk about these test scores. you think that there's a lot more to education than just test scores? >> the place where i am less worried, sometimes when you see the national rankings, you say these will be the ones that eat our lunch one day. we've been middling on these country wide rankings for about 50 years but the amount of innovation and economic creation happening in the u.s. is accelerating. the u.s. is in that dimension is in a good position because of its natural, its dynamic economy, because of its inventiveness, because of its culture of creativity, what we need to do and i agree with
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everyone who has talked before is try to get that, more into the school system, try to get the school system to make sure that people have the skills so that everyone can participate in this economic engine. >> wendy, what do you make, it seems to me what sal is say iin is we don't need to become more like something sk. we need to become more like the very best of america, a combination of rigor and inventiveness and open-mindedness and creative thinking. >> of course i agree. i think what the piece shows us is how much wasted potential there is in this country. it shows us what's possible. and i think what tom spoke to about what we saw in shanghai, this is not magic or unique to the chinese culture and i thought this was so fascinating. we go in there and we're listening to the man has really led not ohm their engagement in had pisa but the education system for the last two decades
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and said let me tell you the number one driver of our success was our "open door policy," the fact we sent our educators to other countries and that drove a pedigogical revolution in this country. it's fascinating. we're far from that. we look at the pisa rankings, let's defend america, rather than let's find out what are they doing differently in the countries that are so far ahead. >> to the point of it's not there's some magic to chinese culture, i was struck by the strange high school is two and a half years ahead of the massachusetts school, which is our top performing school. if you just do the math china has a 230-day school year, we have a 180-day school year, that's 50 days a year. at 15 you've done ten years of school, that's 500 days so the 15-year-old chinese kid has been in school two and a half years longer than the massachusetts. >> it's such an important point and i really hope the viewers get their heads around it, the
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kid in shanghai is going to school 50 days a year, we're not talking about two or three days, 50 days a year difference, and america is still the most dynamic, innovative economy in so many ways. >> so age-old fashion we'll hope that somehow technology will solve all this and so i will of course ask sal khan whether he is going to save american education, with enwit with enwee education, with enwitnwhen we c back. ♪
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and we are back, talking about education and the pisa scores with joel friedman, wendy kopp, tom friedman and sal khan. you describe as the revolution, finally the internet and information technology is going to revolutionize education but you know, to the extent that that is happening, it's happening in the united states more than anywhere else. can this online learning that the khan academy and so many of its imitators, and new forms of online learning, like the massive online courses colleges offer, is this going to get us around what otherwise seems like a very rigid bureaucracy which hasn't been able to adapt to the new challenges that education
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needs? >> so it's still very, very early days to know for sure but it does feel like something special is going on. what's exciting, if we talk about khan academy, more focused on k through 12 or the mooks, more focused on higher education, you're announcing very serious institutions really rethink their models. it's not about, hey, technology is going to solve the problem. it's much more about technology allows us to think from a blank late. students can get exercises, videos at their own time and pace, personalized information. maybe lass time doesn't have to be about lectures. maybe teachers can spend more time doing what some of the teachers in shanghai were doing, having more autonomy, spending more time one on one with students. it's early days but we're starting to see cracks in the ice, and i think this goes to the solution, this is going to be led by america, where it's not us emulating other folks, we
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can learn from what they're doing bus us rethinking the entire model and i don't think this is just going to benefit america. i think will take shanghai and singapore and finland to new heights. >> tom, your worry is, though, american culture does not support learning in quite the same way. you had the great line in young of with your books where you said in china, bill gates is britney spears. in america, britney spears is brittaney spears, and you have teacher in oregon who sent you a letter. describe what the letter says. >> you've got. se gotten several of these and basically describes his class, a lot of "a" students and a real lot of "f" students with kids just don't do their homework, they don't come to school prepared and they don't appreciate the connection between skills and their job opportunities, and a lot of the distractions, facebook, twitter, all of these things, i don't think we appreciate how much of a distraction that is, and there's too many parents who
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become enablers, johnny and suzy are stressed, they need time for soccer and facebook, and as michael and i said in our last book you don't know what stress is. stress will be not understanding the thick chinese accent of your kid's first boss. that will be stress. >> joel, when you look at these other countries, what i'm struck by is there is almost no athletics involved. if you were to go to finland, germany, south korea, sippingap and say i want to play soccer. there's a league next door. why are you asking us, we're an educational institution. if you look at high schools in america, the degree of time managing money devoted to say football is huge. that must be a distraction. >> it is, and part of the problem is, goes back to we start with so little time to begin with, and then we try to move the time away from some of the basics. let me just pick up on one point
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which i think is important you asked sal about technology. the thing that will change education is teaching and learning. it's at that interface where it happens. technology can make teachers more empowered, more effective, the kind of things that sal is doing to help them. >> and you have a company. >> i have a company amplified doing the same kind of things and i think that's right. what you're struck by when you listen to wendy and listen to tom and they went to visit this school in shanghai, what that was about was great teachers. we got to get great teachers constantly getting better and give them the tools and the help, so that their kids can learn. >> to you that means teacher evaluations. >> teacher evaluations, better pay, it means more time on task and it means the constant improvement that wendy, tom and others have long talked about. when you talk about these teachers, constantly working with each other, getting better at their craft, and using technology to empower and enable and to engage kids.
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there's where technology can change the game for us. >> wendy, when you've looked around, because your teach for all is now in 36 countries. >> yes. >> what seemed to be the best practices that are applicable? >> one thing is, just to go back to the shanghai example, it was about teachers. it's also about school leaders and it's about system leadership. we were blown away by the caliber of the folks who have over a long time driven the change and if you get under the covers, some shanghai schools are stronger than others and they take those school principals who are running the best schools and pair them up with the principalless at the other schools so they can transfer rahs. this is a people business. i couldn't agree more that technology can give a ton of leverage to really strong people but to me, we need, and this is what teach for all is all about, but we got to start channeling our top talent towards this challenge of improving
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educational outcomes, and especially taking on educational outcomes for the most disadvantaged kids, and that needs to happen all across the world. >> tom, when you look at this problem and you see the obstacle, i mean longer days, teacher evaluation, longer years, teachers' unions in general are opposed to all of this. is this politically feasible? >> you know, i think it is politically feasible. it's going to take wise leadership. obviously the democratic party is dependent on teachers unions but my wife is a member of the teachers union, my daughter was a member of the teachers union. i find many, many of the teachers that i interface with, they want to do better. they want to excel, and there are teachers unions that have been trying to work with reformers across the country. i think the thing we have to keep in mind is, yes, we need better teachers and it starts there and they have to address this. we also need better parents, more focused on their kids' learning. we need better neighbors who
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care about their public school, we need better political leaders who compare themselves with the best chinese schools, not just the district next door, we need better business leaders who care, don't just outsource the jobs and most of all we need better students who come to school ready to learn not to text. you give me better parents, better neighbors, better business leaders, better political leaders and better students i'll make every good teacher great and make every outstanding teacher better. it takes a village. >> thank you all. this was terrific, tom friedman, sal khan, joel klein, wendy kopp. up next, what in the world? protesters in europe pull down a statue of lenin. why this is not going to be a ukrainian's friend. there's a saying around here, you stand behind what you say. around here you don't make excuses. you make commitments. and when you can't live up to them, you own up, and make it right.
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now for your "what in the world" segment. take a look at these extraordinary pictures in the ukraine. protesters knocking down the giant statue of russian
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revolutionary statue lenin, protesters cheer them on as they hack the statue with hammers. the incident sunday was one of the most symbolic protests in ukraine. at the heart is a widespread frustration, not only with the government in kiev but more so with russian defense. some would call another defining moment from 1989, when it led to the end of the receive yoet union and of course ukraine, but i think you need to go back further in history to understand further what's going on in the ukraine. first, here's what sparked the crisis, in november, president yanukovych pulled out of a proposed deal to forge closer ties with the european union. why? well one reason was that he had another offer from moscow. russia wants ukraine to joining its customs union which includes
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belarus and kazhakstan. this is not a new story. the tug-of-war over ukraine is rooted in history, in his book "the clash of civilizations: the political scientist samuel huntington pointed out the divide between western and eastern christianity runs right through the heart of ukraine. and that divide between two kinds of christianity and thus two paths of political development dates back to the middle ages, and it resonates in ukraine's politics to this day. take a look at this map from ukraine's 1994 presidential elections, shaded in gray on the left are the provinces that voted for the incumbent leonard krutshuk. on the right was the pro-russian leeed any kutcma. both took 13 provinces each, abeven split reflecting the deeply historical cultural divide. while ukraine might have mixed
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feelings about its destiny, power politics has pushed it in one direction. huntington notes that in 1654, this was the defining moment, the cosacks pledge ed d allegia in russia fighting off polish rule. from then on until independence in 1991, ukraine was controlled by moscow. the question is will this domination condition into the 21st century? it shouldn't. much has changed since 1654, the forces of democracy, globalization, trade and technology give ukraine much greater freedom of action, and it shouldn't be one person's decision to align with russia or europe. that's the anger that you see on the streets of kiev, the people want to be involved in this fateful decision. the choice on either side is clear. europe will want ukraine to modernize, to become more liberal and free, and to undertake serious economic
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reforms, if it wants to become closer to the west. that choice is difficult in the short term, but has long-term payoffs. the alternative is rather different, under vladimir pew tun russia wants to main tain a sphere ofiness fluns. putin will use a mixture of threats, bribes and his own media resources to reach this goal. i was struck by one moment last week on russian tv, a russian journalist was narrating a revisionist account of what he was seeing in kiev, then suddenly, a ukrainian journalist pops into the puck tour and awards him what looks like an oscar. it was for good acting, i suppose. this battle for people's hearts and minds will continue in the xhomg weeks, but the real decision point comes in 2015, when ukraine next goes to vote. perhaps one day 2015 will be seen as a turning point, like 1654. up next, why north korea's
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kim jong-un ordered the execution of his own uncle. what on earth is going on in the her mitt kingdom? i have a great insider account.
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washington with a check of the headlines. south africa bid a fanl farewell to knellsnelson man tell latoda. family members watched from a nearby tent. earlier othousands of mourners attended his funeral, including oprah one-free, britain's prince charles and the reverend jesse jackson. anti-government protesters in ukraine received a show of support today from senator john mccain, protesters are upset with their president for refusing to sign a trade deal with the european union, instead opting for closer ties with russia. earlier on "state of the union" mccain said russian president vladimir putin is putting pressure on ukraine because he sees the former soviet bloc country as key to increasing his own influence. secretary of state john kerry is back in vietnam. kerry, a vietnam veteran, visited the country's mekong delta where he once patrolled a
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navy swift boat in search of vietcong vigt fighters. he's discussing the country's partnership with the u.s. in climate and trade issues. a student wounded by a gunman in a colorado high school shoot something in critical condition, 17-year-old claire davis is suffering severe head trauma after being shot at point blank range friday at arapahoe high school. the gunman was a fellow student who died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound. winter is one week away but a big snowstorm is walloping the northeastern u.s. the storm is expected to dump more than a foot of snow from new york to maine. those are your top stories. "reliable sources" is at the top of the hour. now back to "fareed zakaria, gps." the family dynamics of the un family of north korea are fascinating to begin with. kim il-sung is afforded god-like
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status. his song, kim jong-il was wanted the reins of dictatorship and it was hoped his son, kim jong-un would be the kinder, gentler korean dictator. the news on friday of the news agency seemed to put that to rest. his uncle was executed. what to make of all of this, what does it mean for north korea's neighbors, what does it mean for the united states? joining me now is kurt campbell who until earlier this year was the administration's point man on asia, the assistant u.s. secretary of state for east asian and pacific affairs. kurt, just first give me your reaction. what do you make of what's going on? because nobody really understands this black box that is north korea. >> first of all it's great to be with you. i would simply say that it's easy to forget, but korean peninsula is still the most dangerous place on the planet, and the north korean leadership is deeply unpredictable under
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the best of circumstances, and this new leader, who is value just a kid, kim jong-un, has proven himself time and time again over the course of the last few years to be dangerous, almost uncontrollable, and with very few touchstones in asia. china normally had the ability to engage north korea, and control its destiny somewhat. i think that process, that period has passed. he is taking north korea in a very dangerous direction, high tensions with japan, with china, with south korea, and the united states. they really standalone on the global stage. they're well armed, and i think increasingly will become desperate. >> could the nature of this whole thing, they released photographs of 3,000-word document alleging that the uncle was planning a military coup, was trying to destroy the
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economy, and then plan a military coup so he could take over and then spend lots of money and raise the economy. the core of that question, why did they feel they needed to do that and is there likely to be a strong faction of the military that is, that was and remains against kim jong-un and in favor of the government, in other words do we have a danger of a real power struggle within north korea? >> the fundamental truth is we really do not know. we know that jang song-thaek was probably the most sophisticated interlocuture, the internationalist, who understood how the economy functioned, how the party cohorts worked together, he had the closest relationships in china. he, in many respects, was the person that the international community was counting on to provide some stable counsel to this young upstart.
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i think we saw pretty clearly on, however, that he had unusual powers, and that people were looking to him in a way to play this role, and for a young, inexperienced leader prone to violence, he could be threatening. i think it would be fair to say that kim jong-un spent seven or eight years out of north korea in school in switzerland. we went to great pains to interview and engage with almost everyone, classmates, others, to try to get a sense of what his character was like, even at an earlier period in his life. the general recounting of those experience led us to believe that he was dangerous, unpredictable, prone to violence, and with delusions of grandeur. now, obviously, subsequently find out that he's the leader of north korea, so those were probably based on some expectation of what his future would hold for him. but we've seen so many zigs and
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zags, and really, this is only the most recent experience of public execution over the course of the last couple of months. i think that that, these actions will be destabilizing internally, and will create more internal sense that north korea may not be on the right track going forward. >> kurt, we have 30 seconds. china supports this regime, 90% of the energy, 50% of the food. at the end of the day, they fear north korean collapse more than anything else, and so with all this said, my guess is the chinese will still very reluctantly keep this regime afloat >> i agree with that. one of the great diplomats of china, enormously experienced, described north korea like this, he said, "north korea is like a can of dog food." we a we were shocked. "if you leave it on the shelf unopened it can last forever but
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as soon as you open it, it will spoil rapidly." that's what china's fear is currently. >> kurt campbell the obama administration's point man on asia until recently thank you. >> great to be with you, thank you, fareed. up next why islam has a perception problem and what it would take to reform it. right back with the turkish thinker, mustafa akio. ♪ the more i remember this place, the more i want to go back. a city so diverse it makes you feel there's never enough time to enjoy it.
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modern islamists full of contrast, and contradictions. some of the fateful seem stuck in the 15th century or even earlier while others are racing into the 21st. one of the sharpest takes on modern islam i've read in a long time is a new book by turkey's finest political analyst, mu stasta op. "islam without extremes." it's a past "gps book of the week." akyol joins me to discuss the futures of islam. >> it's a pleasure to be on the show, fareed, thank you >> why do you think islam has such a kind of brutal image, even well-meaning people, even
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tolerant people basically believe that at the end of the day, there's something in the religion that seems to breed fanaticism or intolerance or violence. if you look at an event around the world, a terrorist event, something like that, there is a tendency to assume that it must be those muslims out there somewhere, nigeria, indonesia. why do you think that is? >> well, that is because onstally there are fanatic intolerant muslims who of course have been making the news because they're doing or saying horrible things but my argument as a fellow muslim is that, well, christianity had such expressions in the past. there was a time catholicism was not very liberal, the middle ages inquisition. it has changed. >> you grew up in turkey, a secular country, grew up as a believing muslim but liberal. what was your experience of growing up with regard to this issue? did you watch extremism grow? >> while i was growing up i saw
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signs of terrorism in the name of islam which disturbed me but on the other hand i loved islam as a faith. in my book i explain how i found the book in my grandfather's library at the age of 9 which had beautiful quotes from the koran, then a quote not from the koran but medieval islamic text which said if your children do not start to pray at the age of 10, then beat them up. well at the age of 9, i read that, i go thet a little worrie. it would be a good thing if i prayed because i didn't want a slap in my face, would it be much better. >> if the only reason you're praying is to avoid -- >> it wouldn't be much better if i prayed generally to worship god. that's relevant for muslim society today. >> you found a lot of the things that youths, people think of as part of islam are actually not in the book. >> not in the koran. there's no stoning in the koran. the idea you should execute someone for aposthecizing from
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the koran does not exist. the idea women are not smart enough to advise men is not in the koran. lot of troubling issues we find in the muslim world actually do not come from the core of the religion which is scripture. they come from historical interpretations, and they sometimes reflect just medieval, middle eastern culture rather than the religion itself, which makes it easier to make a case for reform of these. >> if you look at the issue that most people think of as the central part of islam, women in black veils, head to toe, the line in the koran as i understand it, simply says women should dress modestly, comma, as should men. >> exactly. >> from that has been interpreted -- >> exactly. when you look at the koran, yes, there is women should stress modestly and some medieval scholars describe this modesty in the tenth century, nothing should be visible other than their eyes. when we freeze islam in these
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medieval norms we are creating this big gap between the modern world and evolving modern world and some traditions and i think that also harms islam because it makes people to choose between their fate and a more open liberal attitude. >> you notice something very interesting when you went to mecca, where you did the hajj actually, what's called the offseason hajj, and you noticed something about the difference between being in the heart of mecca, following the rules that have been in place since the seventh century, and saudi arabia today. >> very interesting. when i went there i did my prayers and the rituals. what i noticed was that around the kaba, there is no segregation. men and women are together. there is no physical barrier between a man and a woman in the very holy shrine of islam. >> the kaba is the holiest shrine. >> the hole ye shrine in the city of mecca, the birth place
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of islam. you leave the kaba and go to burger kick or starbucks which is next to the shrine, you have to be separated. men and women go two different ways because the saudi king tom physically separates men and women in every public space. thinking that's the pious thing to to. if you want to talk to a lady this is the only place you can do this is the kaba. >> what do you say people say fine christianity was intolerant 500 years ago. right now we're dealing with islam is going through a very intolerant phase and it is, therefore, the problem? >> i would' gr aagree with that unfortunately. not all of islam. we have islamic groups movements that are really intolerant and sometimes violent. my argument -- i'm not someone who says there's no problem with the muslim world. i accept that there are big problems especially from a liberal point of view but i think they can be changed and reformed as catholicisms
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achanged over the centuries and many others changes. >> how do you do that? is there something the west can to, that america can do or is this an internal debate within islam? >> this is essentially an internal debate within islam. in my book i argued the west can help indirectly first by supporting principles of democracy, and not supporting militant or autocratic regimes in the middle east like it happened for a long time. secondly, support the market economy because one thing that transformed minds is the economy, and in turkey, for example, one of the reasons turkey is a successful country, democracy, with some flaws, you know, that are discussing these days, turkey has a market economy in the middle class way made people more rational, more practicing nettic about their attitude to world and also in business matters as well. in the arab world you have sometimes oil money which is a curse as you also wonderfully explained in your book so with he need to have education and
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west can help in that regard. we need to have cultural exchanges. these are all very helpful, but violent confrontations do not help. occupying a country to liberate it does not help that much. >> pleasure to have you on. >> pleasure to be on the show. thank you. up next, a special quiz that will change how you think about the record, really. right back. you make commitments. and when you can't live up to them, you own up, and make it right. some people think the kind of accountability that thrives on so many streets in this country has gone missing in the places where it's needed most. but i know you'll still find it when you know where to look.
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now for our question of the week, and you've got three questions for you this time, all from a non-profit called the gap minder foundation. here is the first one. what is the average life expectancy in the world today? a, 70 years, b, 60 years, or c, 50 years. hold on for the answer. here is the second question. what percentage of adults in the world today are literate, how many can read and write? a, 80%, b, 60%, c, 40%. again hold off for the answer. here is the final question. what percent annual of the world's 1-year-old children are vaccinated against measles? a, 0%, b, 50%, c, 80%. now for the answers.
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the world's average life expectancy is not 50, not 60. 70 years. what percent of the adults in the world are literate, not 40, not 60 but 80% and if you are spotting a trend, yes, 80% of the world's 1-year-olds are vaccinated against measles. the questions all come from the gap minder foundation started by swedish professor hans rosman. he runs a series of ignorance tests. basically his point is people understand the world by generalizing personal experiences so they often miss major trends. we might think the world is doing badly because of the perceptions we once had, but in reality, things are much better than we imagine. if to to try all ten questions, according to the gap minder survey, most americans got between one and four of the ten answers correct. with only three possible answers to each question you'd likely do better if you picked at random. try it out. my book of the week is
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"reimagining india: unliking the potential of asia's next superpower" a collection of essays compiled by the consulting firm mckenzie. one of the essays in there is mine and there are others as well. the challenges india faces and how they can overcome them it's a comprehensive book and a very good read. programming note at 2:00 p.m. eastern today on cnn, i have a special report for you on a very important topic, guns. the debate over guns in america is sfwha deadlocked so i thought i'd look to the rest of the world for perspective. for example, we often hear that violent video games are a factor in gun violence. well, we went to japan. they love violent video games, and they had only four gun deaths in the entire year 2010. or consider australia, in the years since they passed a gun control law in 1996, gun suicides fell by 65%.
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gun homicides fell by 59%. we'll also go to colombia and switzerland for lessons. it's an important documentary, four connents, four lessons valuable for the united states. watch it at 2:00 p.m. on cnn "global lessons on guns." up next, "reliable sources." gloonchts good morning, welcome to a bright and sunny washington where it's bitter between the white house and the press corps. reporters say thisser' not getting the access this he need and the white house says we'll never be satisfied. later how ron burgundy blanketed the air waves and how a courtroom decision in new york that happened this week that could impact the future of journalism. let's get started. it's time for "reliable sources."