tv Senator Marco Rubio on Poverty CSPAN January 12, 2014 1:45am-2:32am EST
the land. i remember my friends always saying all the right over the land of israel, all the rights belong to the jews, all the right over the land are jewish rights. all the inhabitants in the country should have all the rights. but there was still a distinction. the war for independence, a very hard war, israel suffered many casualties. about 1% were killed during the war. as a child, i was following my parents, and i started to study agriculture in the university, but the war started. maybe the hardest thing was for me to be promoted from private to corporal. i went through the ranks, to the rank of general, then at the end
of the war, i was very wounded in battle. the siege in jerusalem in may of 1948, i want to the hospital, came back, and before the end of the war, that is how it looked then, and i never tell them, do not suffer heavy casualties. i do not remember us losing self- confidence. people then saw goals ahead of them. at the beginning of the war, we knew that independence was lapping at our gate. november 29, 1947, the british left, and we knew they were going to leave from may 15,
1948. so we knew independence was coming, we knew hundreds of refugees were waiting in the refugee camps, europe and others were sustained by the british, so we knew goals would be open. having all those goals made you work very hard. i do not remember one day or kind of the crisis or that we lost our self-confidence. it was a very dangerous war. >> are you still in the military? >> no, i left the military, i joined the underground movement during the british time. altogether, i served -- i left in 1973, just three months before the civil war that took
place in october, 1973. my last function was the commander of the thousand command. i commanded the front. maybe the hardest part of the war petition. in mid-july 1973, i left the army and i became a commander of the reserve army division. i commanded the division three months later. i was called to serve a major general, to command the division during the yom kippur war. the suez canal was a turning point during the yom kippur war.
>> family -- you have been married twice. >> i got first married in 1953 to a beautiful and charming girl who was a nurse whom i knew since she was i think 15 years old. she was a psychiatric nurse. we had a wonderful son, and in 1962, she was killed in a road accident while driving her car through jerusalem. she was a supervisory psychiatric nurse. then i was left with our son, with all the difficulties, i still remember one of the hardest things i had was how to tell a boy who is five years old about the death of his mother, it a very complicated thing.
i remember the tears beginning to start about this tragedy. and then i got married with my present wife, who is the sister of my first wife, and two boys were born, and then after a few years, i think five years, after my first wife was killed, my oldest son was killed in a terrible accident when he was shot by another boy who played with a very old shotgun.
>> let me stop a second and show this picture. >> the one over there, gur, that was the one who was killed, gilad and omri -- the other two were officers, and he is running the farm now. >> what impact did the loss of your first wife and your son have on you? >> they were very hard events. in every aspect. but i managed to overcome and to live my life again. it was a terrible thing when my
first wife was killed, and then it was a terrible thing when my son was killed, and he died in my arms. he was wounded in his head, and i fell this kind of one before, i knew there was no -- you always have some hopes. he died in my arms. and then i thought for a while i would not be able to overcome this. my wonderful boy, very wonderful but i managed, i did manage. >> how many languages do you speak? >> hebrew, of course is my mother language, and then we all
learn english, i speak russian, because my grandmother used to speak russian, so i understand russian. i would understand a lecture if it is not too complicated. i speak arabic. >> it seems like i hear a little french accent on your english. >> no. it is the israeli accent. >> what about the united states? i saw in your book you are thinking at one time about joining the university of colorado on agriculture. >> the first am i came here after the war of independence, i had a terrible malaria, and i could not get rid of it, the
doctor could not find any solution, and then they thought a change of climate might be able to overcome it, so i was a young major, very young, and i went to europe first and then i came to the united states, of course the first time i left the village, our village, and came, of course i always remember going with my head up like this, and of course remember london and rome and so on, and then coming here, the first thing i did -- i was in college but my
aunt, and she encouraged me to go and have a driver license here, and i learned how to drive, and i went up to texas then. i saw dry country, i went to a hotel, and then from louisiana back to london, mexican gulf, to palm beach, florida. and i was completely surprised by the amount of water in bridges, and i took so many pictures -- when i came home, so many of the pictures were of bridges.
in israel, for a very short period, from the end of november to march, then everything is becoming -- in the winter it is green and beautiful, beautiful flowers, but it is very short. then everything gets yellow, then gray, then it becomes brown and so on. so for me, those bridges were the first surprise i saw coming to this country. for a subsequent visit, i got rid of the malaria, but i was also fascinated by what i saw.
i went to university in jerusalem in november of 1947 and i had to leave. -- as my father did, and i checked to a university, i was mostly interested in -- the center was then -- that life developed a different direction, i came home, i served as an officer in northern command where i met general bayon. meanwhile, we are facing a wave coming across the occupied territories in egypt, in the gaza district.
there was a one-to-one unit to fight terror, had a tremendous influence, then i became the commander. i managed to go back to study much later, and then i went to study law and get my law degree. >> you are a member of the knesset. >> i am a member of the knesset and a member of the government. i served as minister of culture, minister of defense.
>> how many members are there? just to put in perspective for our people. how many members are in the knesset? >> hundreds. >> how many are members of the likud party, your party. >> we have the most. >> members of the labor party -- >> 39. >> how many other parties? >> there are some other parties, religious parties, parties on the left and on the right, altogether -- >> how long were you elected for? >> four years. >> how may people do you represent? >> we do not have the system, it is not the same system that you have here. they've talked about moving into original elections, similar to what you have here.
>> who elects you? >> we are elected -- the candidates are elected by the party convention. the party convention assuming similar -- is something similar to what you have here, likud is the largest party, democratic party having 2600 members, and they elect the candidates for the parliament. >> when somebody goes into the voting booth, who they vote for? >> they vote for a party. they vote for a party. according to the number of votes, that is the number of seats in the parliament a party will get. we don't have the system here.
they're talking about changing the system. >> you don't have to serve a constituency, you do not have to go back and shake hands with the individual district voters. >> i have to shake hands -- israel is more comfortable, generally speaking about israel, being almost daily in the headlines, people get the impression you speak about a giant. river jordan to the mediterranean, it is 57 miles. so a small, beautiful country, beautiful country. and of course, it is ours, and not oil that we found there, not other sources, the sea is the lowest place in earth.
you can be in jerusalem, 2700 feet above sea level, you come to the lowest place in the world, the dead sea, 500 feet below sea level. if you know your bible, the guidebook, jerusalem is the capital of the jews for the last 3000 years. bethlehem, almost 4000 years -- [inaudible] all the names were kept as they are in the bible. >> we're talking with ariel sharon and we are talking about his book called "warrior," and
you can see it here, it is published by simon & schuster, and in the middle there you can see that this book was written with david chanoff. >> yes. >> who is he? >> david chanoff is a young writer from boston who was introduced to me by simon & schuster. i met with him, i had to tell the story, and i had to tell the story to somebody who could tell the story, so i met with some people, and i decided that would be able to talk to david, so we worked on this book i think about 2.5 years, but i never could take -- i used to work one month, two months, i used to see, talk, write, and then of course do it again. it is not an easy thing because
when the man is starting to write, he is knowledgeable about israel, too, and now i can say he knows a lot about israel. he wrote several books, and i enjoyed working with him. maybe i will have another book with him, i don't know. >> did you do most of the work in the united states? >> most of the book was done in israel. >> is the book written primarily for the american citizen? >> this book was written for the american reader. in israel, the book is edited for the israeli reader. there are things that should be emphasized more. we try to do it to suit the
american reader, whom might understand the problems of israel, the problems that affect israel. what we are facing, what might be in the future, and try to attract the interest of people, jewish and non-jewish. israel is a special country, it is a different country than any other country. israel is a special country, it is a different country than any other country. magazine libel trial. to the best i can tell, there were only two pages devoted to it. how come so little? >> the remaining stories i could not tell here, there are many issues i could not come, how big can a book be?
so many things had to be -- besides that, it was a book published by simon & schuster, written by an israeli writer and journalist who discussed these trials and detailed -- in details. it was a hard trial, and it was not easy to come over here and try to prove to this empire, "time" magazine was and is an empire, in their own backyard, but i told them that when they publish that report, when my last day in the ministry, and
when i read that that, i decided i had to start fighting. to try and show improvement was a lie. it was not an easy thing. it was a very long trial. it was summer when the trail started, and autumn, the leaves were red, and then the winter came, and i even remember a beautiful girl sitting there, and she talked about getting married, and then she talked about getting pregnant. it was a long struggle, legal struggle, it was very hard -- it
is very hard to conduct a trial in the u.s. >> what did it cost you? >> the law firm, very nice, very good, they took on me, the expenses by itself was almost three quarters of a million dollars. by itself, a terrible burden, one front was the legal front, the second front with the disaster front, then the press conference for weeks. of course i took advantage of that to talk about israel, our lives, issues in our region and so on. i'm glad that i did it. my wife and son came here. it was a struggle. and what we managed to prove was of course that they lied about
the facts, and i never instigated, i never encouraged, i never talked to anyone about what took place. and i was very glad because i regarded it as something i could not have accepted. >> there is a bestseller in this country, number one on the bestsellers list, and the audience knows what this, we had this gentleman, the "new york times" reporter tom friedman, and he wrote about you, and i looked in the index, and i looked at the name sharon, and i want to read this and get your reaction and give you a chance to answer directly for you know the man, by the way.
>> i have known tom friedman for many years, i met with him. he used to come to our farm, used to come to our apartment in jerusalem. i've not read his book. but i've heard some things about the book, and i have to admit several inaccuracies. >> i have to read this -- hama it all comes down to rules, rule or die, one man triumphs, the other is weak. i am convinced there is only one man in israel assad ever feared and that is ariel sharon because assad knew sharon was willing to play by hama rules. would you agree? >> assad is afraid of me, maybe that is something to avoid in the future, but it is not the right one.
i do not believe in it, i do not believe that -- it is something outrageous. i cannot accept that. i never believed in this violence and terror. i think about the man, assad, who in order to overcome a certain resistance destroyed may be one of the oldest cities in the world, leveled the city, killed 25,000 people, assad is a tyrant. nothing about democracy. i can see what they're doing now in lebanon. >> do you think assad fears you? >> that is what tom friedman writes. if assad fears me, that may be a good thing.
the strength of israel, enough to misjudge israel, to the result -- the way that we restrict ourselves, but when it comes to military strength, i think it is better to be careful. if he fears, i think maybe that is a good thing, but entirely different things, entirely different people -- we never believed in murders, we never believed in dictatorship, we believe in democracy, a stable democracy, we are members of the democratic government, the democratic party. >> chapter six, ariel sharon never sent yasser arafat flowers.
sharon did not play games with his enemies -- he killed them. >> 50 years after the breakout of the second world war, i think maybe it is good to remember what winston churchill said to the british people in june 1941. he said we will never negotiate with hitler or with any of his gang. and i personally believe the free world, we believe in free society, should never negotiate with assad and his gang. you speak about the man who has got more jewish blood on his hands than anybody since that time.
we signed the peace agreement with saddat, and i respect his agreement, i support his agreement, but there are enemies with whom you never find any peace agreement, with the them, you never negotiate. destruction, elimination of your country. think about the democrat country -- small democratic country is israel, which is the integral part of the free world, and that is written in a covenant, but if you do not believe me, you can see daily events -- these are enemies with whom you do not negotiate, with whom you cannot talk. there are people that -- take an example, there are people that their activities cannot be tolerated by the people of the
free world, and one of these people is qaddafi. the united states tried to kill him. arafat is in the same category. >> ariel sharon -- this is tom friedman again -- epitomizes the ruthless european zionist. in the jacket of your book, it even calls you ruthless. do you like it when they call you ruthless? if i can find it, i would like to read this -- i will find it while you respond -- here it is visionary and ruthless. jacket to your book. >> ruthless, merciless? you speak about determined, about determined, yes.
i remember what the late -- i had the privilege -- whenever the young officer, he liked me very much, and he invited me, and i remember he taught me a greek saying that said to dare is to succeed. the story of our people in the land of israel is the story of daring. that is the story. without daring, i don't think we could have achieved anything here. >> why do people like to write the word ruthless when they talk about ariel sharon? >> i think the question should
be -- once you believe in something, you have to fight for it. that is how i was taught at home. in our home, never anybody was accepted. without getting checked. my parents used to say always never accept anything, never take anything for granted. if you accept it, it is along the line that you believe that you supported. if not, fight it. that is the way how i do. maybe i had the strength to struggle for those things i believe. i do not think i ever gave up. i did struggle. and maybe that is one reason, maybe i saw some of these earlier than others.
and i was not overcome by mocking or things like that. i was determined. >> your book, which you have published and we are talking about here, "ariel sharon: "warrior," what kind of reception have you received a brownie united states around this book and how much traveling have you done to promote it? >> not too much. i came here for 10 days, very hectic days. i have been in new york, washington. in the future, maybe i will do more than i can do now. i've been here to the country many times. i love to come to the united states. i like this good democracy.
you know, when it is a friendship to israel i think a mutual friendship. the contribution of this good democracy to the world, leading all of the countries in the world, i like to come here. it is also an experience. it is a new experience. >> you appeared on the phil donahue show. what was your reaction to the suggestive nature of that program? were you comfortable? were you uncomfortable? were you ready for it? >> it took me a minute or two to realize where i was, and then of course i had to act according to the program, the way it was done, and it took me several minutes, and i managed to be on the stage there, it had to be done. i don't see any reason that a
if somebody looks at you but you have to give up. it is important. >> do you have programs like that in israel? >> not of this kind. there are some other programs, of course, and i do interviews a lot, so i might be aggressive, but we don't -- i never participated in a program of this kind. but also i did it. >> maybe it was a couple of days before that, you were scared to days -- scheduled to go on the larry king show, i happens to be watching that night. >> because of that, i did not, because it was a night with a particular discussion -- >> george stalling, a catholic, did it irritate you to come on the show?
>> no, i do not think it was personal. >> what has been the overall reaction from what you have seen by the media to you on this book? >> i don't have any complaints. i am glad to be here. i hope that the book will help people to understand the part of israel and our people there from every aspect. i tried to describe in an accurate way. sometimes i found it was easier to do the things than to write about those things, but it was interesting.
>> i have a cover story in "insight" magazine, which is published by the "washington times," and the cover story looks like this -- i want to show the audience, a couple of people you probably know pretty well. we talked about the fact that you were born in israel 61 years ago, how about these two gentlemen when you look at here, mr. perez and mr. shamir, were they born in israel? >> no, they were not born in israel. >> what country did they come from? >> both of them are born in poland. >> what about some of the other people we know? >> he was born in israel. >> golda mayor was born here, wasn't she? >> she was born in russia and came here. >> does it matter at all? you have been there all of your life, does it matter to you or
others if you came from another country, whether or not you can be a part of the government? >> no, first of all, there is a difference, everyone might be elected, and according to democratic way, for no, no, i do not think so. altogether, i don't think there is a lot of difference. all of us are jews. first of all, i am a jew before anything else. it is one of the reasons i'm writing the book, i'm looking for a situation where israel will be able to meet those challenges. >> are you religious? >> no, but i am a jew. i am a jew, and that is more than anything else.
>> how much does religion play a role in the whole exercise of government? >> when you speak about religious here or there -- israel, when you speak about religious, you speak about the orthodox community. there are people who keep tradition but we would not call them orthodox. they are about 15% of the population. >> most of the people leading the state of israel are not religious jews? >> yes. >> i want to read this first paragraph. "rumor has it that yitzhak samir and ariel sharon have not spoken
for more than six months, that yitzhak rabin tried to punch sharon for impugning his character in a cabinet meeting. in cabinet meetings, notes were passed that made derogatory comments about cabinet members." >> i think it has been exaggerated, like in every party, like in political life there are struggles and so on but they have been exaggerated. >> have you spoken to mr. shamir in six months? >> quite often. i talked to him in the government meetings and the meetings of the likud ministers. if there is any other issue that is important, i believe that should be discussed.
we are all on talking terms. mostly on tactics, but not overall strategy. >> are you friends? >> no. should we be friends with everyone? >> in a recent likud ministerial meeting, ariel sharon asked why he has not dethroned talks. why -- been informed of talks. sharon, because you leak everything. sharon, i feel contempt for what you said. shamir, you only create an ugly atmosphere. sharon, i laugh at these statements. >> you don't expect me to prove these things.
if i prove these things, i would be in "insight" magazine. >> here is a picture of you. here you are. they say any event this man does not continue to be prime minister, one or the other of you might be. are you still interested in being prime minister? >> israel is a democracy. if i'm a nominated or elected by my party, i will take it. i believe i can contribute in setting those needed goals for israel, and i believe they could have been communicated in the peace process, maybe the warrior will become the peacemaker. >> could we go back and discuss the invasion into lebanon, the
whole issue that eventually became a libel suit? tell us your side of the story. it was in 1982. why did you go into lebanon? >> it was a dismal situation along our northern border. in lebanon those days it was the plo, independent kingdom of terror headed by yasser arafat and others, one of whom is responsible for this tragedy. civilians of our northern towns became hostages in their hands. they took advantage of the cease-fire which was not kept completely. that is one of the mistakes of the book.
during this year of the cease- fire, there were 290 terrorist activities that took place. most at the northern border, but they took place inside israel or along other borders or in europe against jews and israeli citizens. in lebanon they had their more than 500 guns, rockets, 15,000 terrorist information.
thousands of people moved southward. we could not take any activity against the terrorists because they would start to immediately shell our civilian population. if we accept this situation, jews will be murdered elsewhere in the world. even the u.s. representative was busy trying to say that the cease-fire did not include jews in europe or any other places, and we could not accept it. the situation became harder and harder until our ambassador in london was shot in his head. then israel took a decision to
send our air to attack terrorist targets in lebanon. in reaction, they started heavy shelling of our settlements. on the 16th of may, 1982. we had talked about it dozens of times. we faced a very dangerous situation and the government decided on the fifth to move into lebanon to destroy the plo terrorist infrastructure, and that's what we did. those tragic events that took place later, neither myself nor any other israeli was involved in these atrocities.