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tv   Taiwan Outlook  PBS  September 6, 2013 7:00pm-8:01pm PDT

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>> hello, and welcome. i'm francois picard. coming up -- now that worries about russia have been laid to rest, how about iran? the new president and allies reportedly showing signs chemical weapons are a step too far in their report for bashar assad. we will be asking our friday panel journalists who goes into the picking of the host city
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summer olympics? amid-anger ove overruns and doubts on all three candidates' offers be it istanbul, tokyo, we will expel all doubts. first let's go to the newsroom. hello to melissa bell. >> thank you very much, indeed, francois. a look at the very latest headlines. 7:00 p.m. here in paris. syria has dominated and divided the g20 summit in st. petersburg. vladimir putin met with the american president, each maintaining their positions, divisions as great as they ever were. barack obama trying to convince leaders, journalists and american congress men and women of the need for action on syria. the united states has ordered all nonemergency personnel to leave beirut and turkey due to threat. americans have been warned not to travel to lebanon or southeastern turkey.
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while that is where we're going to start this news bulletin with another sign that the tension is growing around syria. before we move on to what was discussed today at the g20. the united states has warned americans today to avoid all travel to lebanon and to defer nonessential trips to turkey, citing the potential for violence. warn warning all threats. the state department's travel warning came as as u.s. embassy, nonessential staff members were there. we can speak to adam there. the personnel in the american embassy there in beirut has been reduced town to its minimum levels. >> yes, no better indication whether there's a specific threat with the americans are aware of as led to this drawdown in numbers. but i think it's fair to say it's probably related to the
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anticipated strikes on syria by american, possibly french forces. also, of course, those are not -- it's not even sure those will go ahead pending votes in congress and u.n. reports and the like, kind of advice they have given is absolute actually standard, even if it's a raise in alertness if you like. firstly that the americans shouldn't travel to lebanon but that's actually been the case for some time. all but none sem travel here have opinion urged to lead and if they stay to be aware of the risks and to be ready to leave it short notice. i think in all of this bear niped attacks in benghazi on american compounds last year led to the deaths of fough americans and that's not to suggest they're aware of any similar threat, but simply it's raised sense turfty of american installations abroad, to a very high level and, of course, they're going to be extremely cautious about any indications of threats that they may have perceived. >> tell u. adam, -- us about the wider population in lebanon as
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we inch towards these strikes that the americans have been talking about with, of course, votes that are still needed in congress and so on. but as we head towards them and we have heard barack obama very clearly explain that was what he believed assad could not be allowed to carry out chemical attacks on his own cities. he was clear in the press conference at the g20 earlier in st. petersburg. as tension ratchets up and war of words gets more intense, as possibility of american strikes becomes ever closer, what is the feeling in lebanon where spillover has been going on for months now? is there a sense things are likely to get much worse? >> well, there's always a sense that lebanon is carried and tide of events in its much larger knabe are. syria, of course, the strikes no different. there are concerns, especially given the spillover already taking place and fighting that's been happening in tripoli, also in the bomb blast in tripoli and
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southern beirut. all of which have been linked in some way -- excuse me, to the ongoing conflict in syria. and then you have to bear in mind hezbollah is obviously directly related -- directly taking part in the fight in syria's side and lebanese also helping opposition. fear is with the tensions racing like this and syria and iran and hezbollah warning any strikes can lead to broadened conflict within the region, lebanon would be the place to bear that burden. you also have to think of the sensitivity of the southern border, which is always extremely volatile and possibility that people have considered hezbollah could retaliate on behalf of syria, perhaps against israel. or if there's any kind of incidence on the border there, israel can strike and those kind of incidents can quickly lead to escalations. on top of all of this and perhaps worse-case scenarios, if the strikes go ahead, they could lead toin tense phis fighting in syria itself, which could then in turn lead to largee number of refugees aliving in lebanon. there's already 720,000 refugees
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here. those are registered or been registered by the u.n. government estimates another 500,000, they say as many as 40% of the people in lebanon now are syrians. more than one in three. and country would find it very hard to take the burden of increased influx of refugees and kind of social, political and security problems that they could create. >> thank you, adam, very much indeed. syria, of course, dominated events at the g20, not only the talk during the meetings but also, of course, the chat that barack obama had with vladimir putin. it lasted 20 to 30 minutes. the russian president said, and had not bridged the differences between the two men. if anything, those differences were laid out all the more starkly today then they had perhaps in the past. vladimir putin explained an intervention in syria would further destabilize the middle east. he accused the rebels of
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provocation in using chemical weapons and said russia would continue to help syria. translator: i don't even want to think about another country once again being subjected to an aggression. we will be helping syria as we're already helping syria. we're going to supply arms. we're going to cooperate in the economics there. i hope ws also can provide humanitarian aid and support 0 civilians, civilians being hit particularly hard. >> the russian president also made clear as far as he was concerned, the g20 was broadly on his side. only five countries which were listed back to the american calls for a military strike against syria. ten minutes after his press conference ended, however, barack obama rose to make his
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case for action. arguing inaction in the face of use of chemical weapons was more dangerous then military action. as for figures, the white house suggested this evening 11 of those participating in the g20 today backed some form of strong military response. now, barack obama used his press conference to talk about the moods in the meeting and the fact as far as he was concerned, majority of those present believed bashar assad was behind the use of chems -- chemical weapons. >> for the first time in many years -- it was unanimous that chemical weapons were used. there was unanimous view that the norm against using chemical weapons has to be taken mained -- maintained, that these weapons were banned for a reason. and that the international community has to take those norms seriously.
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i would say the majority of the room is comfortable with our conclusion that assad, the assad government was spom for their use. obviously, this is disputed by president putin but if you polled the leaders last night, i'm confident that you would get a vort who said it is most likely we are pretty confident the assad regime used them. >> barack obama there, who spent the day trying to convince his counterparts of the need to act against syria. going to speak to our correspondent now in washington about the fact the american president's real battle lies in the days ahead when the idea of intervening in syria comes to the floor of congress. indeed at times barack obama was speaing today it seemed he was
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even now directing his remarks to american politicians. here's what compirnteant had to say? >> i think that's absolutely right. and he faces a battle back here in the united states on two fronts. he's got to try to secure congressional approval for his desire to strike at syria militarily but he knows one of the reasons, the principal reasons why members of congress are hesitant to support him is that public opinion it ranged against him. so we're going to see on tuesday at a tomb still to be determined by the white house, a presidential address to the nation in which barack obama will be reaching in to american living rooms and trying to persuade members of the public to stop telling members of congress not to back an assault on syria. so barack obama acknowledged in that press conference in st. petersburg that there's some very heavy lifting that lies ahead. all the numbers clearly show that and that's both the public opinion poll numbers but also more importantly from the president's perspective, the
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numbers in congress. they are simply not there for him. >> simon marks reporting a short while ago, ahead, of course, of the coming days of the vote in congress. the senate and house of representatives, all of which, of course, has been watched very closely from damascus. our corespondent lucy fielder is there. >> the city has always been considered throughout this uprising something above all and it still is to some extent. even here the violence is never far away and never far from -- is never easy to forget. for one thing we hear the loud, very loud explosions constantly, which is in fact the sound of shells being launched by the government on the areas around damascus, such on the edge of the old city, really not far out of the center at all, and damascus countryside, again, not too far away. you quite often see smoke rising from over there. i say sound is very loud and you see on people' faces they're no longer at all surprised to see
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this sound, hear this sound really regularly. the other really marked thing -- and this is a city i used to come to a lot and it's marked difference that i noticed and something that's changed recently is huge nb of checkpoints really a few hundred meters, if not less and that's just in the center of the capital. very difficult to move around. they do stop cars. they check everything, passport. ask where you're going and that, of course, had a huge effect on the economic activity. not the only thing, of course. crisis impacted that. restaurants and so on closed. people don't go out late afternoon and evenings. the city is dead. of course, this is all -- it's worth mentioning d.a. mass cuss is one of the less effected places in the country. violence elsewhere is much, much worse but definitely no longer true damascus is simply untouched. there's a very drank at moss -- dangerous balance and normality
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and strangeness of tension. >> the end of bulletin and time to go back to the studio, francois picard, who is in the studios for tonight's "the world this week." >> thank you up in the newsroom. sime for "world this week" and our one hour with us, craig capetes from the courts in atlantic. how are you, sir? and columnist for "the sunday telegraph." how are you? >> very well. >> and the magazine that brings together the best newspaper magazine clippings from around the world. >> translated into french and website. >> that's right. >> and the french news weekly magazine. how are you? >> very good. >> the world this week, join the conversation on facebook and twitter, #twtw. since august 21 in the chemical weapons attack in the suburbs of
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damascus, the whole world has been squarely focused on syria. president putin at the close of the g 20 summit was -- was saying that he was going to stand his ground. you wrote a profile of the assad family this week, which starts here. august 8, smiling bashar assad at the grand mosque in damascus to celebrate the end of the holy month of ramadan. minutes earlier there was an attack on his convoy inside what you can call damascus' safe zone. do you think that attack has a link to the chemical weapons attack? >> well, it's been a feud a lot by "the times" of london and a few other outlet that's carried that story, assad was so furious that apparently he ordered ma
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hair -- mahare, the cousin or head of the fourth armied brigade and guard to carry something one step further. i haven't -- >> this is speculation? >> these are, i think speculation. what we know for now is that they're indeed where -- where mortar attacks on that, not directly on the convoy but in the area, in the vicinity of the assad convoy to that mosque that day. which is a way -- there was a way to remember to -- for assad that the civil war that started two years ago ask getting closer and closer. even that there's -- he's security square, as the call, these people call it, is no longer border that cannot be reached by the rebels. >> and that sort of squares with what our correspondant lucy fielder, in damas cushion has been saying.
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at the same time there's the sort of trimmings of normality but sort of bunker mentality and you can hear obviously the shelling and distance when you're in that outlet. >> you can. of course, that's the background noise of syria and for everybody these days but what you can hear is most certainly the fighter jets that are flying over in damascus skies. that is something even in those very secure places. but there's no real place where they can really be safe these days and that's what -- that's what happens on august 8. however, did that have a relation with the attack with the gas attack? i don't know. i wouldn't speculate on that. this has been done by some of my colleagues but it's very hard to be certain that twhass trig this triggered the gas attack. >> we will hear later a
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different version of what happened with the sarin gas attack from president putin this friday, close of the g20, where the u.s. president, barack obama, reiterated the same message he did on wednesday when he was in sweden on route to st. petersburg. saying, well, it's not just about syria. >> if people who, you know, decry international inaction in rwanda and, you know, say how terrible it is that these human rights violations that take place around the world, and why aren't we do something about it? and they always look to the united states and then if the international community turns around, when we're saying it's time to take some responsibility and says, well, hold on a second , we're not sure. that erodes our ability to
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maintain the kind of norms that we're looking at. >> and point taken. any point taken? >> not as far as i conspire. >> he begin that's remark with rwanda, which the current u.s. administration previously has been haunted by the inaction that was taken there. 800,000 killed in a genocide. >> and so should the u.n. have been because the u.n. had been fully warned by the general on the ground at the time and refused to do anything. it's a good way to try to sell it to the people but unfortunately, people have been watching syria for two years now and that, you know, there are massacres and 100,000 people have died is appalling. who are we help something who would we be helping? that was an extraordinary piece in "the new york times" about
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ten days ago about an western journalist, american journalist, who managed to escape after captivity by jihaddists in syria. he was beaten and was -- he saw people killed. he escaped literally at the risk of his life probably leaving behind him somebody who could not pass through a window that they managed to destroy and probably leaving him to his death. with the man saying go ahead, flee. what we hear about these people is that syria's a place where you got on the ground bad guys and worse guys. will limited strikes do anything except assuage western kenches i find very selfish. >> on twitter, one comment from one of the viewers, obama wants to go to war but at the end the neighboring nations will suffer for years. there really is the sense that
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the timing of this st. petersburg g20 could not have been worse, as barack obama is trying to muster enough votes to 0 get a resolution passed in congress. >> yes, of course. there was a russian newspaper saying yesterday the british parliament said at the g20 if there had been strikes on syria, could not have greeted obama and the french and everybody if there had been strikes in syria. but he was saying who are we helping in syria? i will say that i think sear cra is not the main subject here. i think it's why intervene after two years and 100,000 dead? i think now it's about sending a signal, maybe, to russia, to iran, now they want it to stop. but i foresee syria there will
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not be major change anyway. >> remember the time line for what happened in bosnia and, it was what, four years into that consulate when there were nato strikes. four years is what it took and or all of those four years, d they were having conversations similar to the one we're having now. >> it's true but don't think the strikes in bosnia, if i correctly, prevented massacre in srebrenica. they didn't. so every strike, the also famous ones were the ones held by bill clinton in somalia and afghanistan against -- as retaliation for the bombing of the embassy in nairobi and -- there's another one, nairobi and -- >> tanzania. >> yes, yes. there was no -- that didn't prevent it from happening.
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so the problem with the idea and i read an interesting comment by colin powell himself the other day saying, the u.s. should stop thinking that it's military might can actually change something. because it does not really change something. >> two years ago -- >> the arabs certainly believe so, the big story this week was pointed out the arab states willing to fund this war. >> we could hear john canary say that, u.s. secretary of state in hearings before congress going beyond just promising there would not be u.s. boots on the ground. >> arab countries offering to bear costs and assist the answers profoundly, yes ecks they have. that offer is on the table. >> and that offer is on the
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table, he says and in the background there you saw protesters with their hands up in the air. >> the urge to save humanitarian is more often then not a false front to rule. what's going on in the united states is a game to save obama's face. i think there's two key issues here at this point in the argument, number one, it is illegal to start a war in the united states without the united states congress signing on. i have -- have past presidents done it? yes, they have. have any of them been prosecuted? no, they have not. now the chicken is coming home to roost on this. number two it's also illegal under international law to attack another country without the u.n. getting behind it. so this is about not only obama's need to be vindicated politically for drawing these red lines and being a very weak leader but i am going to take a counterintuitive position on this. this is what i call the united
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nations unforgiven moment. you remember the movie "unforgiven" with clint eastwood, where he plays this mild-mannered cowboy gunslinger given it all up and pacificist and then rides into this town and they killed his friends and they wiped everyone out? maybe the u.n. will surprise us here. because it is in the u.n.'s hands. they have been toothless, wormless and feckless for most of their existence. if this really is the international problem that obama says it is and if everyone is so concerned about the humanitarian nature of this, well then let's send in the u.n. force led by the turks. that's not going to happen. we know that. >> you don't believe a word of this, do you. >> don't believe a word of it but what i'm saying is all we hear is humanitarian nature of this thing, how important it is, we have to save humanitarian. these are chemical weapons.
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poison gas. then you see obama ks one other quick point here, i have covered every u.s./soviet/russian summit through the reagan years, every one inhave never, ever in my life until today seen a soviet /russian leader upstage an american leader in that view and today i did. you look at the putin news conference. obama news conference. even if you give putin home court advantage being in st. petersburg, it was -- it was a fright aning exhibition. >> at the end of the day the bigger battle might be not in st. petersburg but in washington . obama went on to say at that press conference he understands the american public's deep skepticism. it's what they call in washington a heavy lift getting congress there. you see the senate right now, 52
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undecided senators. only quarter signed on it seems. the fixed blog and in the house despite the endorsement obama got from the republican leadership, well, more and more people saying they're either strongly against or leaning against and so the question posed by the international herald tribune cartoonist, which is this about punishing assad or punishing obama? >> yes. that's the new avenue today. there was this article in "the new york times," they went towards the senators and those representative who have been in their constituency. who have heard the american voters. they had some striking experience. some of them were in favor of the strikes. it would teaped normal meeting in their homes and people come to them and say, don't -- don't
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vote for the strikes. i mean like people that usually are not really politicized and they get feedback from constituency, heavy, heavyly against the strikes. some of them have changed their mind. that's the -- the piece in "the new york times" today saying, that might be an even harder road for obama. >> shifting the phone calls, between 10 and 15-1 most senate and congressional offices i heard before i came over here. >> if french politicians went to stop preparing for the next year's election and european ones, they would get exactly the same feedback. as it is we had a debate in parliament and france but no road? why no road? even with the majority of socialists in parliament, it does not ensure would have a majority to go to war of the he's done deals with the greensment suddenly you get people, a green leader and forefront of the anti-war in iraq movement, and he says
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things like, we would only be helping the hardest prevailen. how can he tell? this smacks of deals for the political diagnose >> let me is ask you this question and it's sticking to its guns department, british "newsweek"ly, the economist last week on its coverage urged leaders to hit assad hard. this is the cover this week. "fight this war, not the last one." they're still rooting for a fight here. >> yes, doing this some st. james street. they're laying down the law from the safety of basically the constitution by other means. fine. if you're talking about it because you cannot do much harm. in respect i think they're talking through their collective ase. >> but there's no way they come out weakened over the city and even if they win, weakened.
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it's minor strikes obama is asking for. it's not toppling the regime, nothing. and it's so hard for him to get, how can he frighten iran and north korea and other countries now? >> craig, don't want to reopen last week's argument but could this secretly be obama's way of saving face. you say he lost face against putin. saving face with the word that he gave a year ago. that mistake he made by drawing this red line puts it to congress, congress says no. >> congress says no and he can't go. if he does go -- >> that would save him down the road. >> he would get -- look, i'm -- my prognostication is if he loses the vote, and i believe he will and he does go, you will see impeachment. >> he won't go. won't go. >> but if he doesn't go, it's the end of u.s. dominance of -- after last century. >> we have known that for a while. >> three more years. >> yes.
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>> the clip you ran, francois, of kerry talking about the arabs paying for this is so significant and it does -- it does underscore my point. >> i find it unacceptable. >> it doesn't mat fer it's unacceptable. if the arabs want to hire america as their mercenary because the ultimate -- the utimate objective here at some point, the war is going to be with iran. and today there was a statement on the official iranian news wire which at last for me was shocking. i read that thing every day and read funny stuff. they were saying a local official, middle-level official in iran on the official state wire said that if they invaded, if the united states invades syria, that iranians are going to go and rape -- rape president obama's daughter. this was on the official iranian
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news service. >> what iran's position all of this is one of the points we want to broach when we come back, we actually heard several messages out of tehran this week. part two of "the world this week" will be taking a look at who will host the next olympics and politics that goes into that decision. stay with us. and with that most importantly causing the french taxpayer a penny. sound too good to be true? we will be finding out this week in "beyond business."
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>> welcome back or welcome if you're just joining us. this is "the world this week." before we resume a sampling of the stories we will be following at the top of the hour. syria dominating and dividing the g20 summit in st. petersburg. barack obama saying he understands the deep american skepticism. russia's president skept cal as to who used chemical weapons in the suburbs of damascus. meanwhile, over in moscow, russian activist alexi novalni campaigning to force a runoff for sunday's race for mayor of moscow. speaking of election races, could well be losing battle for kevin rudd and labor party. they race to be chief of office in australia's general election, where the conservatives, led by tonny abbott 0, enjoy a comfortable lead in the polls. u.s. urged nonemergency
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personnel to leave beirut and turkey due to threats and being advised not to travel to lebanon or southeastern turkey. those stories and much more for you at the top of the hour here. welcome back or welcome if you're just joining us this is "the world this week" and we are craig from "the atlantic" and elisabeth from "the sunday telegraph." how do you translate this from french? international posts? >> yes, international posts. >> something like that. with us as well le somlier and we are talking before the break, there was talk about who upstaged who. no points for guessing at a g20 summit taking place in vladimir putin's hometown. definitely was out of the frying pan and into the fire feel for obama's week. g20 summit not the forum to build momentum for coalition force strikes against syria. majority participants either
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sitting the fence or openly against intervention in syria. u.s. president did finally though this friday sit down one to one with his hosts in st. petersburg for 20 minutes to 30 minutes, both sticking to their positions, queue the closing press conference. >> everything that happens with the so-called use of chemical weapons is a provocation by the rebels. rebels who opinion can't on the outside help, on the help of the countries that initially supported them. this is the very essence of this provocation. >> vladimir putin has the last laugh, says craig but is that really the case down the line when you look at the longer term? >> want me to say iran will get the last laugh? >> not necessarily. what do you think? it's putin's molt. he's at home. >> yes, it's putin's moment. it depends how he play on that because it really depends on
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what the congress ruled. i think if obama loses here, it will be lost -- it will last for a long time. >> i think let's put that into a bigger perspective. we have right now putin behind. you have the chinese. you have iran, all of the adge station, iran and syria, you have pakistan also who's since probably the bin laden assassination, turning towards china. so you have -- i'm not going to say a new cold war but you really have two blocs that are going after each other this time. it's not -- it's not a re-enactment of what it was before but putin has the much stronger position then he was before, all of the republicans of the promise republics are towards putin.
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armenia recently. it's really reinforcement of this. i see this or the of bloc against bloc political coming forward again. >> we had a guest on this very show thursday evening who argued the opposite. who said when it comes to the political map, yes, what you have described is true. but when it comes to economic interests, well, they're like ship that's pass in the night. russians and americans, they're not competing anywhere really. >> economics is something a great moment to ask western nations at peace but at the end of the day we're not talking about economics. we're talking about foreign politics. not vacuum one side stpwhrfment precisely. >> you have people who know what taking a stand and keeping it is. and we're seeing the players that we used to see at the time of the soviets and we are seeing them with the added sort of the
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whole islammist element added to this, which means they're twice as tractable and they see basically a cipher in front of them playing little games. we are talking about a position of weakness. i'm appalled by the french position on this, because we had a weak president who himself reason thought it was so nice that he was being asked by the leader of the free world and to obama the strong leader of the free world thanou a lot about it but even brits walked away from the encounter. these are terribles they didn't need. they left in the past the impression, and do still today with gabaltra and fall cans, when push comes to shove, they make their case in an uncompromising way. we don't. i remind you this great possibility of osama bin laden -- >> so the somalia is forgotten?
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>> i know he quoted today and didn't see the difference being called by the legitimate government where you have a longstanding tradition of colonialism first and then tight relations afterwards where people on the ground welcoming you as liberators because they had been occupied by morningers and people who were forcing them into something they did not want. this was something that was perfectly understandable. it has nothing to do with the quagmire that is syria. you have 12 rather different jihaddists rebel groups of every stripe on the ground. >> on the world's stage, molly was an outing to the museum. it was really important but it was nothing by comparison. >> it is actually a museum, too. >> exactly. look, the one thing that is lacking here is that when reagan , bush the first, and bill
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clinton dealt with the soviets -- >> hang on. but, craig, we're talking about news cycles that are very short and obama said himself, there is no good solution in syria. we all agreed that around this table. >> well, -- >> i don't agree to that. maybe there is a good solution here. who has gone to the u.n., again, i go back to my clint eastwood unforgiven moment for the u.n. you go there and you say, ok, every account syria has in the world, switzerland, pull the money. every deal syria has -- >> russia vetos. >> let's see if russia vetos. no one has actually gone in to do this. you can be very hard on syria. let's put russia on call. if they're agreeing this a humanitarian issue, put the chinese on call. there are many ways to go about this that might fail, i'm the first to admit, but no one tried them. >> i agree also there may be some solution that so far who
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was called for an international conference on syria? the russians. every time, you know, it's been -- west has not done much to pushing people to be around the table. it might be impossible or even at this point to put people around the table but who knows? i want -- speak about the british, with the i.r.a. and these people could not talk to -- >> you're right. >> -- and eventually he talked to them. >> the issue that comes back to the russians and sadly -- and i say this with sadness -- is that president obama does not have the chops to go face to face with putin, who is a tough russian as ronnie reagan did, george bush first and bill clinton did. >> but we mentioned at the beginning, this is all come about because, after 100,000 deaths, chemical weapons, "time" magazine posted a story asking now if the road to damascus and to a breakthrough might lead not
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to moscow but tehran. the week began with former president rafsanjani reportedly accusing assad of gassing his own people. an audio version surfaced after the story. the story pulled from an iranian news agency. and then his all iran'sew president tweeting,appyew ye toll jews and espn specially iranian news. government spokesperson later insists it's not really the twitter account but instead moderated by fans. to set the record straight, the man at the top spoke out on syria on thursday. translator: nobody around the world would believe that the u.s. is seeking to defend humanity. they are talking too much and use rhetoric to justify their moves.
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and, of course, we believe that they're wrong. they're making a mistake. they will feel a blow regarding the situation. they will definitely suffer damage. there's no doubt about that. >> what's going on in tehran? we also saw in the midst of all of this the new president has put underis own wing the negotiations over the nuclear issue taking it away, it seems, from the supreme leader? >> you can't take anything away from the leader. let that be -- no, i think what we hear is nothing new from iran. now they have something they can negotiate with. you know everything -- all that they want is put up nuclear program ahead sofment now they're saying if they can discuss on syria, show americans they have the way to damascus
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from tie ranne, they have to talk to that ran to settle the problem iran to settle the problem in syria so if they have to talk to iran, they have to talk about the nuclear problem. >> do you believe rafsanjani actully said those words? >> it's part of the strategy to send mixed signals. you also heard they want to attack the embassy in baghdad, american embassy in baghdad if -- if there was strikes on syria. you see there investigating their roots because hezbollah might strike there. that's why we have a moderate president now after eight years is to sayless someone you can talk to but it doesn't change all strategy. >> the issue of chemical weapons is also very touchy in iran. especially with the memories -- brings back the member of the iran/iraq war. >> yes, of cour. >> and then iran have been
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saying for some time, what happened for the kurds for example in 1998 in iraq would happen in syria. but also blaming the rebels. so -- >> this is where economics does duck tail here, anne. i know you made that point. there are two different things. but gee, i wonder who sold them all of that sarin gas they' using there and gas during the i believe "th dly mail" did a story this week thatointed out a lo of e sarin gas that's in iran came fro a couple british compies d that the british customs just didn't see it being ld. and let's go back a few years. i mean, we're -- why don't we draw a red line here? where is the red le of culpability. >> there used to be a great deal of sarin gas in iraq and that crossed the border and found itself in syria. everybody said oh, you know, america and blair cooked up the dossier and there were no
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weapons of mass destruction in iraq. there were weapons of mass destruction in iraq and they were declared to the u.n. inspectors in '98. so that's where it comes from. >> the same week, i think august 21 when the sarin gas attack had been apparent -- alleged sarin gas attack happened in damascus suburbs, there was a report from actually felt like saddam used on four occasions during the iran/iraq war, the cia gained approval or is some sort of -- >> it's so convenient. it's convenient for th bellicose nature of the american position on this now to point to this. but i suggested so much it's a much large he problem and i would go as far as to say last time i looked, napalm was a chemical weapon. cluster bombs were chemical weapons. these are the questions that are coming out now because of what's
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going on in syria. these are the questions that both the russians and the americans and the french and ultimately the united nations, great arab trure of everything hole yiffer are failing to tackle. >> you mentioned a chess game going on when it comes to all of the region there. another chess game going on saturday in buenos aires, election taking place. 105 active members of the international olympic committee will choose the hosts of the 2020 summer olympics. all three finalists have their strengths and also their weaknesses. madrid is in a deep recession. istanbul's economic boon is slated to slow. it's also lipet been the scene of heavy police crackdown. and tokyo is haunted by the specter of the fukushima nuclear disaster.
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>> i already explained to you the radiation level in the water or food is absolutely safe. same as here. >> the current economic situation in spain is not that good but the olympics is a chance to create jobs. >> there would not be any kind of extra taxes for our people. not only for istanbul but people or for the nation. this is one of the important arguments for us. >> read my lips, no new taxes in istanbul. >> the check is in the mail. >> actually, that remarks is also in the context of we've seen the protests and disgruntlement in rio in the buildup to the olympics taking place there and world cup where suddenly it's gone way over budget. >> surprised. and so did athens as well.
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everywhere. >> everywhere. >> it's always the same story. there are a few exceptions. los angeles, london. >> los angeles was the only exception because it was the first olympics that monetized itself. ever since then all of them have lost money. in fact, it took montreal 25, 30 years, i believe they offed the debt. >> it believes how much you believe in the theory of exturnalities you do not see on the brick some of the good effects is, ripple effect afterwards. for london, i absolutely believe if you look together at what it brought london, including the feel-good, consternation of the feel-good feeling, there's a reason why there's growth in britain. certainly hasn't got to do with the lowering of the debt because that has not lowered. but there's growth in england because there's more confidence and that matters. >> who's going to win? >> don't know. i have worked with the japanese. they have not for 20 years.
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>> i give spain a little boost i think and -- >> is athens so much corruption that half the stadiums were not quite finished and contracts that could not be given because people withdrew from tendering because the kickbacks were so enormous. >> and e.u. euros sent down to help out. >> i think -- >> i would watch for istanbul. it's between two worlds. awesome country. >> the argument for istanbul is turkey never hosted an olympics. >> this is their fifth bid which means a lot at the i.o.c. >> greek tradition, olympics. >> i would say madrid goes out in the first round and then istanbul. even though bookies have all of their money on tokyo. >> why do you say that? >> because i suspect the i.o.c., particularly athletes, federations who must go to the olympics, are a little nervous
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about that increase in radiation coming out 0 of fukushima. madrid, spanish just cannot afford it. just cannot afford it. istanbul has a solid bid. it's the right place. if you ever had an olympic in asia, bridge between two continents. it's efficient. and most important it's their fifth bid and i.o.c. guys take notice of that, persistence is not futile. with the i.o.c. >> we have a twitter saying, is stan ball political problems, japan radiation problems. >> but you still think, though, istanbul is the place? >> political problems can change a lot in -- seven years? tradition won't go away and economic problems may be harder but government can change. that would be my answer. >> we will have the answer, of course, on saturday.
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now, amid-the battle of titans between apple and google and samsung, we sometimes forget because we talk about mood cycles being quick, the business cycles can be sometimes even quicker. the mon lidge, used to be called microsoft, company founded by bill gates says it's back with the purchase of what was until recently the world leader in mobile phones, nokia. >> today's announcement is a bold step into the future. for microsoft, it's also a signature event, signature event in our transformation. we think this is win-win for employees. win-win for shareholders and win-win for customers of both companies. >> win-win. >> i think it's one loser buying another loser. it's lose-lose as far as i'm
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concerned. steve balmer managed to reduce the seals of microsoft to one quarter the capital -- market capitalization of microsoft to one quarter of apple's. apple's used to be 8% of microsoft. he has taken constantly bad decisons. they lost also -- have a number of technologies they have not been able to integrate them. have not been able to 0 integrate the teams. they are a disaster. windows 8 is a disaster. people do not want a computer that behaves like a tablet badly and nokia has absolutely no charm. the only worse thing they can do is if they bought blackberry. >> shoot 'em! >> putting wranchingele on all of this is the announcement comes hot on the heels of steve balmer saying he's going to be stepping down. >> absolutely. he leaves the ship. >> since he took the baton from bill gates, microsoft's share value has gone south in the last year. turnover has shot up, though, in
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fairness. >> yeah, it shot up when he announced he was leaving. it did. >> briefly. >> there you see 36% less is what shares are worth. but craig, these are big companies, right. how much does the name of the boss matter? and also can these companies redefine themselves? we saw it happen already once with nokia. we saw it happen with ibm. we saw it happen with apple. >> yeah, and who remembers that? it's great business story but the -- what find so compellingly fascinating here is how these -- this new generation of -- who are going to run the world some way, they look upon these products like -- in my generation we used to look at which is our favorite band. who's your favorite band? vote for the rolling stones or beatles. beatles now are apple. rolling stones are samsung.
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and poor nokia and microsoft are kind of like the old generation patty page singing "how much is that little doggy in the window"? it's become a rather culture thing. go out, even in the courts, we're obsessed with this type of stuff. i really think you have to be kind of under 30 years old to really get into it with the real fury that i thought the beatles were always better then the rolling stones and voighted for them on the teen beat survey. >> but it did generate, hamdan on social networks the kind of rush suddenly when the announcement came through. >> i think it's not that bad whofment else could they have done? it's not such a bad move. before apple does its next keynote next week. >> and expensive phones to developing worlds. terrific. good for them for doing it. >> and maybe two can be the nalk of the town.
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>> two negatives make positive. >> and nokia batteries were great. >> always the best and you could replace them. >> back in 2006 before apple had even built its firstphone, nokia was the market leader at the time. famously though, it was ruled big screens on phones, that would never, ever work and that's the market share now for windows phone. and running these businesses is tough. pundittry on them predicting what will happen is just as tough t. seems. -- it seems. >> that gets recorded and as you said -- >> vicious. have you read some of these blogs? if you're a samsung person, a samsung person, apple person or nokia person? >> it used to be, like i remember back in the days in the u.s. when you used to be an apple consumer, you were sort of minority. >> yeah.
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>> like some original guy. right now, in terms it's the opposite. it was not made for americans and microsoft was -- >> if only renault and other s can get people as excited about their cars or how about e.d.f., g.d.f. or suez or whatever they call thmselves this week? imagine how good the economy is. >> that's an important point, in america these big companies shoot into -- into the nasdaq or into the dow jones industrial average. in france there's the feeling here that we don't have these company that's come and go as much. >> we do to some respect. we have the -- >> these are all brand names we had for years. >> google didn't even exist 15 years ago. >> go up or down and some are issue. look at the fashion blogs. >> oh, anne, that has been -- that has been the default.
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this is what we are since the fashion industry started here under colbert and lewis couture. come on. long before. >> i used to be wapedios c.e. early adapter and i had a little p.d.a. and i loved microsoft reader. and there was a wonderful piece in "vanity fair" a few months back with a lot of e-mails leaked by disgruntled microsoft employees which you could chart the disaster they killed which is basically the best reading software to this day, i have used kindle. i used my apple stuff. i saw more windows reader and it was killed by steve balmer and i will not forget it. i will not forget it. >> the lesson here -- >> the boss has to listen. the boss has to listen. one final point, could korea's samsung, by the way, have the next big thing? samsung unveiling the galaxy gear. uses google android system. basically it's a watch.
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you can't speak on the phone with it. but for talk about making comeback. i get called because i still wear a watch at the office. that's another thing. under 30's don't really do. you have one there. we have to leave it at that. hamdan, i want to thank you. and craig, and anne, elisabeth. thank you for joining us here for "the world this week."
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