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tv   To the point  Deutsche Welle  November 15, 2019 12:30pm-1:01pm CET

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you know what kind of course is. the 77 percent talk about the issues come up. from the point of flash from. the rooftop this is where. the 77 percent. this weekend on t.w. . we're currently witnessing often violent protests in countless countries across the world people are talking about a new global political awakening bunch walks of the protesters have in common and well will the angry uprisings mean. outrage over corrupt regimes are yearning not to be shown times economically or politically people want justice and they want freedom it made only be minor grievances the trigger
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a movement but the impact can be huge and it might even change your own world so all question is protests across the globe talking about a revolution. thanks very much indeed for joining us here on to the point and here with me in the studio today. from lebanon who says we are witnessing a global youth rebellion not seen since 968 and people in the middle east a finally breaking the fear guardian also with us is rick not from the washington post who argues that protesters share their frustrations with political systems that don't work in their favor but the solutions to their concerns often differ vastly on the warm welcome. to so young
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a screen research associates at the institute for process and social movement studies here in berlin who believes that the global protest underlined the level of frustration among younger generations about the failure of elites to come up with answers to the problems of our telling me thank you all 3 for being here today once again we're going to begin with raghida and you know we can make a list of countries that are taking part in these uprisings these protests you know hong kong well i've been on catalonia chile for example iraq for example i could go on with an endless almost a list there are a lot of people who think that these movements and these protests have something in common that they overlap that. they have something in common let's stick with that do you agree. well they do have something in common actually more than one thing maybe firstly it's led by young people and it's leaderless i mean in all those
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places we have now or most of those places we have not seen protests led by leaders or led by people who are telling those young people to demonstrate to go on the streets and to demand each one maybe are demanding different things but they're all on the streets and be wanting the political elite to listen to their demands but hear that all young they all want better future for themselves and they're not following any leader of the unrest is spreading in the arab world to reminiscent of the arab spring nearly a decade ago to what extent do you see this as something new and different possibly something even more potent well i would say it's very different from what happened in the what was called the arab spring because if we look at what's happening in iraq and lebanon now for example people for the 1st time are going out on the street not for support of the political leaders but actually against them i mean we see. the people who used in lebanon who used to go on the streets in support of
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hezbollah who are now protesting against hezbollah who are goes used to go in the street the support of a few how do you do the sunni prime minister now or were they you they were demanding his resignation and here's mine and the same with the christian leaders and in iraq as well we see people asking the leaders that they had acted few months ago to resign and you know to to elect a new government that does not have anything to do with political figures but barack rats revenue are quarter let's talk once again just for a moment about the common factor as i go one expert who says that this is going to do with elites worldwide failing to give people the feeling that they can look forward to a life of hope and self-respect is that the common denominator there you see there certainly is that element a lot of especially younger people feel fed up with essentially political systems or structures that were imposed on them sometimes years ago sometimes decades ago. which they feel do no no longer work for them essentially and what's also
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interesting i think is done a lot of cases those protestors do not necessarily identify with the political party they don't no longer do not feel represented by parties any longer and that's certainly something i've observed also looking at that america for instance part from the middle east and yes just pick up on that point if you would a global change movement is what is what is being described a period of flux not seen for decades does that capture the zeitgeist. i mean i'm a bit uneasy about the notion that basically we're seeing something completely new and nothing has been going on in the last years basically so i think that is part of the truth and we're definitely seeing a spike of protests and parts of the world that were not affected by protests in the passage of some of the republics that were some how missed by the arab spring let's put it like that but then at the same time also with that new attention on some of the hot spots comes also more attention. media attention to other hot spots
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in the world it's kind of it you know i said it spirals up into you know into a media frenzy of protests like this it was just a media frenzy because the media but many other people ordinary people that i've been teaching in recent weeks the same we're approaching some kind of tipping point i think is that last of all i think people are empowered by the pictures they see from other parts of the world that you know a televised on their they come to their home screens day to day you know peer into social media they see what is happening there and suddenly they you know there's a shift of mind said there's an impression maybe we could try something like here you know and maybe some of the recipes for the same problems that we have social injustice corruption etc maybe some of the recipes might as well work in our context i think there's a there's a powerful contagion of the men but that doesn't necessarily mean that it's all a global movement because in the end it's mostly cause i think the factors that drive these protests working on nodding yeah i think it's absolutely correct because obviously we always tend to draw comparisons and that's helpful especially
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when it comes to trying to look for solutions like what can we learn from other countries how to how to respond to this or how how to address those demands but at the same time alone and what's happening there is hardly comparable to to what's happening in happening in iraq right now the creator commentators are being pointing to us presidential advisor and. academics huge big persian ski talking of few years ago about it's a global political awakening that notion of an awakening is very optimistic about what we're seeing you do you share that kind of optimism well i would say this is more a backlash against deteriorating conditions it's not necessarily wakening in a sense i think 10 years ago or a few years ago we saw people being inspired by progress and and them protesting because they wanted to be part of it and they felt left out which i think what we're seeing a lot of places now is actually quite different it's more a backlash against. things getting worse for them and for for their countries of
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wrong i think people are getting in bold and when they see other people in other countries where it wasn't so swat that they could go on the streets and and protest against their leaders they're doing it and they start thinking well if they're doing it maybe we can do it i mean the protest if we take an example between iraq and lebanon the demonstrators were holding banners saying get what we salute the protestors in iraq and so the other way around also in iraq they were saying we salute the protesters and love and so when the people in lebanon saw that the people in iraq are on the streets actually burning trying to burn the iraqi the iranian embassy because they feel that iran is interfering in their affairs and is one of the reasons why it's holding the country back so the people who support hezbollah in lebanon and it's fast i'm in the house thought ok if they're doing that well maybe we can also voice our our opinion and go in the street and demand you know better. better living for for for us i mean the situation in iraq and
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lebanon is there's a lot comparable in terms of violence that has seen as iraq has seen but you know that there's always this danger that things can out of control but that finitely there's this link that's people see each other especially in the social media age where everything is supposed to do musically and people can you know send each other pictures of what's happening and they can follow on facebook and twitter what's going on so people do feel emboldened by that ok we go for examples of the moments in each instance when outrage and despair boil over into protest and sometimes in to violence. chile a full sit tight in subway fares triggered mass protests president sebastian pinera a billionaire was made a scapegoat when images surfaced of pinera dining in an expensive restaurant protest displaying the government for the ever widening gap between rich and poor.
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lebanon tens of thousands took to the streets to condemn a 20 cent per day fee the government plan to impose on telephone calls over the internet in late october prime minister al how do you agree resigned but the protests continued now directed against the government's economic policies corruption and inflation. fronts every saturday tens of thousands across the country protested against a 7 cent increase in fuel prices. after 2 months the government rolled back the price increases. here to the demonstrations have continued taking aim at social inequalities in spring 2019 the movement last scene after president emmanuel mccormack initiated a national debate over people today more willing to fight for their rights. well that's a good question but they're young as it was all of our grievances surrounding mobility
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and communication what does that tell us about the movements that we're sort of witnessing at this point in time i would say that it's often the triggers are often maybe not only mobility and telecommunication but basically objects of provisions basically so it's because these are sectors where corruption is rampant in many parts of the world and where. all kinds of social classes are affected in a way by this so basically and s. and especially the ones that are that are anyway disenfranchised off the globalization and of liberal economic reforms and so on so what i think is over what i believe is we see in large parts of the world maybe not in barcelona. in hong kong because there's different motives behind the purpose is that the return of the social question in combination with corruption basically and this is like a very explosive mixture of basically you have a certain fertile grounds that is the grievances of people that are the do is let's say of globalization and then there's these transformative events they're called
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a social movement research basically that you know make blatantly obvious disparages between the walk and talk of the elite basically that show blatantly obvious to everyone that those in power and not you know managing the country for their good for the people's good but for their own in a way and i think that the cases that were mentioned here. was for that but you could as well add indonesia to that or you could add a route to that where actually attempts to disempower anti corruption agencies and so on where the trigger for produce its motive of corruption is returning over and over and over in these protests so i think this is one of the most common denominators of these protests across the world basic rick you have the right you know in these same questions what have you discovered. well. what i think we have discovered is essentially what you just said sort of the this inequality social discontent is certainly driving. tensions in
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a lot of countries but then at the same time i think one of the more interesting discoveries is sort of how people have been trying to deal with it how they've responded to this and one interesting example i've. seen over the last few days has actually been chile where people have realized that with this government they do might not be able to achieve what they want which is. a new constitution essentially a day of come together in thousands of sort of small town hall meetings which they've organized themselves or to have been organized by a soccer clubs or other institutions where they themselves have try to develop solutions and. i think those initiatives and those the ideas are a quite interesting to observe and they're happening in a number of countries ok so community inequality a very important issues very important tropes in what is going on how much and you mentioned this earlier again how much is this is is this an age wall. well it is
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pretty much in a drawer because the gap between rich and poor is widening go all over the world or in the lot of countries even in the united states and even in communities in europe it's not widening to the same degree as in many other countries where we are where we're seeing the protests like and chile today is one of the most you know is one of the richest latin american countries huge enormous hits but that the quality is massive in it and this is why we were talking about the. protests and france who are those people who are protesting a lot of them were people from the bone who are of immigrant descents or algerians who went to paris i mean if you go to paris now and you cross the you cross the volga in the metro and the underground you immediately know that you arrive to the wall do it because i mean you can tell when you walk on the street that it's the volga because it's been left to you know to to decay i mean it's collapsing you can tell that people are unemployed people don't know what to do it's the social
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inequality is massive there and where the same goes and lebanon and iraq those are 2 countries that don't have electricity i mean iraq is an order rich country that people don't have electricity now and the same and lebanon i mean it's yeah the level of you know difference between rich and poor is widening and it's kerry and poor people cannot put up with it even if you tell them it's $0.20 on the phone call when you are the country that pays the you know the one of the highest bills on satellite phones and you know you come and strip them the stride of making a free call that's been given to them it's a universal you know they are going to get angry and they are going to go on the streets and you know think of it to other things yes. yeah i think it's complete is completely right which you just said and i mean what turns dees i mean you could have you know discontent with the political system in any part of the world but you certainly have that in democracies as well you know. for it is all over the place
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but what i think turns these days current protests into larger social movements and to a larger mass uprisings if you will is that there's a there's a frustration basically with the mechanisms or visit with the with the lack of responsivity of the political systems where these protests takes place of so people on the street and there's a parallel actually with movements like the extinction rebellion in germany where the people on the street they have no trust anymore that the political systems that are in place to govern them basically can provide solutions for the problem problems that they see and to what i climb the gym to what extent when you talk about that kind of frustrations what extent can anger can violence even deeds a way to bring about change to what extent is that acceptable after all we're sitting here in germany the countries that is so proud of its peaceful revolution the removed the building wall i mean. i mean 1st of all i think it's necessary to differ basically what kind of violence we're talking
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about if we're talking about physical violence and like you know one of those structural violence which is basically the mind driver that brings people to the street there in the 1st place when we talk about physical violence at purchase events themselves sometimes also in response to policing measures then there's there's basically the evidence is mixed in research there's there's there's been you know it is very. very luck very little evidence that suggests that violent revolutions are generally more successful than nonviolent ones and the opposite is true as well there's been a very contentious book back agenda with that came out lately that basically contests the thesis of the nonviolent revolution as the most successful way i think in a way it's not steerable anyway that much often these violent incidents happen out of situational dynamics with things go out of hand in lebanon yesterday a protester was shot and killed overnight this might very well be an event that spirals out of control in hong kong the protester was shot in the middle east with
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police on the street this was certainly not planned meditated but this this stuff can you know trigger spirals that that end up in violent uprisings on point so i think that is a limited ability of social movements to control their followers to a certain extent they're doing that and i think it's remarkable that actually most of these protests are nonviolent right now and still remarkably peaceful in a way. well these are lives with press and sometimes you know i just wanted to say that one of the reasons why those protests or you know some of them are turning into violence is that the international order is kind of broken down i mean we have the united states that is the leader of the world that that's been quiet on most of those things are all most of those conflicts i mean very important point because it had for so long been a flag ship of freedom and yeah i mean you don't wait for the united states to see what they have to say about those conflicts and when the united states is not saying anything is not going for the government in iraq to you know reform is not calling on the government of lebanon to listen to the people is not you know when
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when we have this silence so those governments feel empowered to fight back their people and this will obviously lead to violence because the people feel they're not being heard and they want to escalate and you know that's when things get out of control interesting comments now let's have a look now at 2 countries that have gone in different directions in recent times change for today and one of the countries changed to a certain extent at least realized in the other. the 2011 arab spring began in tunisia and spread to egypt after weeks of protests egyptian president hosni mubarak resigned he ruled for nearly 30 years he was tried on corruption charges. newly elected egyptian president mohamed morsi set about establishing a strict religious regime after one year he was ousted by a military coup in 2014 former defense minister l c c became president he ordered thousands arrested and democratic organization is crushed many generations are
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calling the regime worse than mubarak's and they're taking to the streets. a ray of hope appeared in sudan after over 3 decades of ruthless domination and months of protests the sudanese dictator omar al bashir was ousted by the country's military following continued bloodshed the military council and opposition forces for freedom movement signed an agreement regulating the division of power between military and civilian authority the 1st democratic elections are to be held within 3 years is it the military that decides success or failure of a revolution. think important question another record question that is related to younis us finding a little bit ideas are very broad questions are to give you how do you how do you best move from anger and despair to sustained constructive chai which. i get that that's the that's the $1000000.00 question in the in
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a way right i mean that's the holy grail of transition studies. that's no guarantee for success but those cases that have proven successful transitional countries to make their way to the democratization of tomorrow open and more liberal systems of society or post conflict countries such as lebanon are iraq. dialogue basically and round tables and bringing the stakeholders to the table and not only those with the guns basically has proven like a relatively successful recipe to to maybe maybe a conflict and to keep it keep it peaceful and let exclusion never works on the long run it might work for the time that repression recession actually remarks we were remarkably well for a certain time but that might backfire on the long run so these exclusion i don't have much hope that wherever people are excluded that this will be sustained and rick what doe what role does leadership play in all this i've seen you know one
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comment was what we're experiencing at the moment a new age of leaderless revolution as though that was something to be applauded as though that were a good thing but what happened to mahatma gandhi will happen to martin luther king what happened to nelson mandela these are the kind of people surely that these movements could use right i guess the sort of advantage or what people see in steve vantage of leaderless movements is that it can be so easily perhaps abused by someone who is charismatic or wants to steer or protest in a certain movement but the risk of course is similar that it can derail and perhaps people are no longer quite sure what they want to achieve in the 1st place and then certain elements break out and erupt as some feared and in hong kong for instance. what is interesting though is doubt in a lot of those places where protests have been happening for instance in iraq on 2 rear square were in lebanon. have sort of come together on public spaces and tried
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to create a society they do sort of envision in a small micro scale and that is something really interesting i think because that is essentially leadership by by living it and by by showing the elite and the establishment what they have in mind you touched on leadership earlier yeah i mean that's true because one of the main problems now is that the whoever is in power does not want to give power this is what you know and believe you know when the president left and you know went to mexico this didn't even come down because this that came came late it's because what he tried to do is they tried to run for another election hit the election he won the election the state of power and this is what to give the people and we see that yes of course if you want to stay in power and if you want to stop those protests against you by force what will happen we have an example in syria president bashar assad time to or did that with the help of the russians which made things worse but what's happened to syria now i mean syria now is fractured country is
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a country that would if the war ends now would take decades to recover and you know god knows how many refugees are going to be able to return to their country if that happens so you can stay in power and you can crush that of revolution but at what price at the price of losing your country as it is you know he's got a quote for you which i found very extremely interesting this week i was reading some common commentary from the center for strategic and international studies in washington he wrote the risks and implications are mounting for governments businesses and organizations it's a question of when not save the digital flash mob comes to those in power how much should those in power be fearing the mall. when i think that those in power have always feared the mob what they're fearing now is social media basically i mean that is quote also it alleges to basic. that's you know the digital.
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connections that can be drawn between very you know disparate people and also outside of the big urban centers basically this is a very empowering component of social media that's also why so many in power are trying to control social media and they're employing in a box armies and they're using means sophisticated means of digital surveillance and repression to get to those that organize protests and so on so i think it's a 2 edged sword it's basically a continuation of i think the game that has been going on between the people in power hold as authoritarian ones for decades just that now a digital level of digital arena has been added to that basically. oh we're running out of time i'm going to have to leave it there i'm a fright we've been talking about this global uprising here all to the point thanks very much for joining us until next week bye bye i'm too.
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i'm not thinking of the job well i guess sometimes i am but i sat up and went through the research of mistakes deep into the german culture of looking at the stereotype of quiet in here thinks he's a country that i know not. needed so you ridiculous drama there you go it's cold out there. i might show join me from the germans on the w. . post. the answer is culture mobile. there it goes inside. their rivalry. 3 princes. dream of being the world. there are for power and boundless ambition of the middle east to come to a race crisis saddam was instances of the cold starts november
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27th on d w led. to. play . this is deja vu news live from berlin venice braces itself for more flooding as the tide rises again the water is not expected to reach wednesday's levels but it still puts the city's unique cultural heritage at friends and the government has declared a state of emergency also coming up to construct more leads to a 2nd death a 70 year old street cleaner caught in.


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