tv BBC World News America PBS September 4, 2013 4:00pm-4:31pm PDT
solutions in a wide range of industries. what can we do for you? >> and now, "bbc world news >> this is bbc world news america, reporting from washington, i'm katty kay. a key senate panel votes to give president obama the authority to use military force in syria, paving the way for of will and rational decision. it is being met with defiance in damascus, where civilians are lining up to become human shields. telling the just time. the smart watch could do the same with just the flip of her wrist, if you really want it.
welcome to our viewers on public television in america and also around the globe. tonight the u.s. congress moves one step closer to authorizing the use of force in syria, but it was just one small step in one long difficult process. the senate foreign relations committee approved the measure paving the way for it votes in the full senate. president obama is on his way to russia for the summit and he said the strike is not just a test of his own credibility, but of the whole world. the widererica to world. president obama line -- landed in sweden and almost immediately had to justify his plans to attack syria. the swedish prime minister was very polite, but like many others, he does not support action. he said the whole globe would be less safe if he did not act.
his red lines drawn out of thin air, but the world's red line. >> the international community's andibility is on the line, america and congress's credibility is on the line, because we give lip service to the notion that these international norms are important. >> as the fighting in syria continues, the world looks to see what america will do. some want it to assume what it's sees as its responsibility. others think it is just another example of imposition and arrogance. the g 20 international summit is being held in russia. the u.n. leader has warned about the dangers of military assault. the u.s.ke japan back but won't join in. while obama's biggest critic is his host, he says an attack by the u.s. alone would be an act of aggression.
>> in line with international law, only the un security council can sanction the use of force against a sovereign state. or methodpretext which might be used to justify the use of force against an independent sovereign state is inadmissible, and can only be interpreted as aggression. in russiahat happens is important, what happens back here in america on capitol hill with the vote is critical for the president. -- aare discussing and him ,otion that would tie its hands demanding there be no boots on the ground. some were in a hurry to get something on the table. republican john mccain stopped the train leaving the station. >> in the strongest terms that we need to have that provision,
it calls for a reversal of in them on the ground battle against bashar assad. many are very doubtful and some have not made up their minds. the committee allowed john mccain to beef up the motion. it is not certain this is what senators will vote on next week, but it is highly likely. long road that leads to military action. while the senate committee was voting, president obama's national security teams been a second straight day on capitol hill. this time they were testifying in front of the house foreign affairs committee. republican tray rate will join me from capitol hill a short time ago. a strikeskeptical of
against syria. was there anything the white house could say, the administration could say that would change your mind? >> they basically made their case. i just walked out of a meeting and they made their case. it is the same rhetoric we heard from the administration and they have failed to show me what the direct threat to the united states of america is. where my biggest fear lies is, i think that should the president unilaterally go through with this strike that would destabilize the region even more , and then we have a very serious problem, especially with our friends in jordan and our ally, israel. >> what are your constituents telling you? >> thousands of e-mails and calls, people connecting on social media. i don't think we have had one call in support of striking syria. noso you're prepared to vote on this resolution, even if it means sending a message to
countries like syria and iran that they can use weapons of mass destruction and get away with it? >> this is a syrian issue. this is a civil war in syria. -- this isis notion terrible. i am the father of it two-year- old child. it is appalling. but this is going on in syria. we cannot be the police of the world, and we cannot do this unilaterally. unless there is a direct threat or indirect threat to the united states or to our allies, and i am more than prepared to vote yes and do something about it. >> we are talking of america's allies, of course. we know that aipac has come out in favor of some kind of military action against syria and they do say would help to protect israel from the stabilization in the region. of pro-israelt
voters in the state of florida. that does not dissuade you either? >> i am an unabashed supporter of israel. i was just in israel a matter of weeks ago. at this point, i have to disagree. i think that, on the contrary, a strike destabilizes what is and potentially makes the situation even worse and more dangerous for the entire region. >> thank you very much for joining me. one unconvinced congressman. wasnse secretary hagel asked specifically about the damage that would be inflicted in the event of a u.s. military strike. he said president obama has made it quite clear what the intention was. >> this would not be a pinprick. those were his words. this would be a significant fact, thet would, in greatest capability. >> pull more on the military
options i spoke with former u.s. defense secretary william cohen. whatu were still there, would your advice be to the white house? >> the advice would be to take into account all of the contingencies. number one we have seen was secretary hagel saying we have gone from a shot across the bow couple of weeks ago when the president talked about this as a warning signal to syria not to use chemical weapons, to now something much more than a pinprick. so there has been this issue of what is the mission exactly going to be? how hard is it going to be? is it to light, too heavy, or just right? in time you initiate an act of war, the consequences can be far greater than what you have anticipated. we are talking about not only launching a military strike
assad's chemical weapons convention to, which seems to be a misnomer. we are not likely to target chemical weapons facilities. we are more likely to target aircraft, airfields, buildings, but going after anything that looks like it might contain chemical weapons, for the obvious reason. it would have the impact of the grading his conventional capability, which will alter the balance on the battlefield. what senator mccain has been arguing, that is the thing up the support of syrian rebel groups. this is going to alter the balance of power. >> you know what it is like to be secretary of defense when a targeted strike is also added. back in 1998, president clinton struck sudan and afghanistan. can something with targets as limited in the way those work, work in this case?
>> they were very well executed in terms of -- >> you were secretary of defense. >> and you fire missiles like that aretainly multiple in number, there is always the danger that one can go into an area and kill lots of civilians. i would expect for example that assad will lay out all the individual troops that were killed by this and have a graphically displayed all over the arab world, saying this is what america does to air children. i think we have to take that into account, that you will kill military targets and also some innocent civilians. that is part of it. when you decide you are going to war, you have to take that into account. my argument is that the president, once he gets consent, and i believe he will get consent from the house, with aipac weighing in so heavily
with other groups and others, that the house will finally authorize this action, but the president needs to go to the security council and present this evidence, overwhelming, convincing evidence that assad has in fact use these chemical weapons. then i think it puts rush on the spot as well as china to then have to veto that. >> you are saying you think it is a bad idea for the u.s. to launch this strike, even if president obama gets approval from congress? >> i think it is a bad idea because it builds the case for the united nations. i think he should do that, and if that fails, say to the world i have made the case, this is something the world has spoken out against historically. no one is willing to face up to the action i am willing to take with support. >> what about the damage to america's credibility if he does not strike?
>> i don't think we gain much in this. this is more about iran than syria. this is the issue that the israelis have been watching us iran'sout, as far as nuclear program is concerned. if the president were to draw a line as he says we have and then not respond to it, i think that sends a signal to iran and in the israelis may say we cannot rely on the united states, we will do it ourselves. those are the issues involved. >> thank you for coming in. suspect he is glad he is not having to make these decisions today. just as american lawmakers grapple with this difficult process, politicians and paris have begun the same debate. hollande welcomed a formal discussion. >> it was a day when france remembered a massacre and
debated how to prevent further massacres in syria. visited thellande site of the worst massacre of civilians on french soil during world war ii. two presidents holding hands, sayingesident hollande -- while he was recalling the past, the french parliament was debating taking action against syria for allegedly using chemical weapons. in the national assembly, the explained- government why the president had chosen to act. ,> in the face of barbarism pacitti is not an option. not to react is to let bashar al-assad carry on with his atrocities and encourage the proliferation and use of weapons of mass destruction.
, some in heated exchanges him peapod objected -- some mp's objected to the shortness of the debates. >> we are only given one hour and a half. you fail to give us any proper answers. pre-k's some from the right remained under is weighted. undissuaded. the president supporters did not rule out a vote. could france take military action without the french parliament having voted? >> i am not saying there will never be a vote. vote, ther there is a signs are the president will get a majority for military action. increasingly, that talk here in
the parliament and the government is using military action to rebalance serious civil war. aboutee it not as just punishing president assad but also about weakening him in the hope this will pave the way for a political solution. in the face of the script -- skeptical public in france, a full debate has been joined. inthis is being watched washington, in paris, and of course in serious self in anticipation of a strike. residents of damascus are being asked to defend the city, some even volunteering to act as human shields around military installation. the syrian regime insist it ready to retaliate whenever any attack is launched. >> summer is ending. fromtorks migrate south europe to africa.
the talk of the early morning tea counters is if the americans attack, how will the course of the war change e in this city and in suburbs, getting the daily shelling after don, there is a broad middle ground of those who just want to survive and supporters of president assad, who say they would die for him. this is a district of damascus staunchly behind him. many are from the same sect as the president. he has men prepare to fight and die for him. he was out shopping with his uncle. his father was killed when he was three months old. >> i know many families who have lost people, including lots of friends of my brother. the dead man's body with with air force intelligence.
everywhere. the security forces are the main employer. the taylor said that in the last two weeks, he has had more customers than ever. that means many new recruits. >> perhaps because so many men in this part of damascus carry guns for the regime and the army , it feels more tents here than elsewhere. military action builds in washington and the tension will transfer itself to the rest of the city. men were local vigilantes. they have been reorganized into a more official formation. said they were expecting armed rebels to attack if there was any american bombing. he said they were ready. are readyle say they
to be human shields. they are camping on the mountain above damascus that could be an american target. with days to go until the vote in the u.s. congress, this is mostly about transmitting defiance to the outside world. >> all of them are with us. anthem --the national they sang the national anthem. in more than two years, neither the regime or the divided, sometimes warring rebel factions have won a decided advantage. americans have the way to change that, if they care to use it. >> extraordinary scenes there from syria. japan's nuclear authority says
radiation levels around tanks pouring contaminated water at the crippled fukushima nuclear plant have risen to new heights. the readings are thought to be high enough to provide a lethal dose of radiation within a few hours to someone standing near contaminated areas without protective clothing. of japan, area tornadoes have hit for a second consecutive day now, this time north of tokyo. there has been significant damage. it tore tiles from roofs, smashed windows and forced trains to stop in their tracks. researchers in china are to carry out a national study checking on links between pollution and in fertility in women. chinesemillion young women are now thought to be incapable of having children. that is 10% of the population, up from 3% just 20 years ago. you have to worry about all that smog.
feel like your smartphone is getting a bit too big? what about a smart watch? the race is on to win over your wrist. last night, ariel castro come the cleveland man who abducted three women and held them captive for a decade was found dead in his prison cell. he was sentenced to life without parole last 1000 years after it meeting to more than 900 charges of rape, and aggravated murder. he has been in protective custody and was checked every 30 minutes, but was not under constant observation. a dramatich marked ending to a case that shocked america. it was this phone call to the police that ended a decade-long ordeal for castro' on bit ends after one of them managed to break free.
gina dejesus, michele knight, and amanda berry were kidnapped after castro offered them a lift in his car. they were chained up into small, squalid rooms at his house, tortured, and repeatedly raped. in a letter found at the house, castro described himself as a sexual predator and talked of committing suicide. plead guilty to more than 900 charges in order to avoid the death penalty. he told the court he was addicted to pornography. one of his victims, michele knight, disagrees. hell.pent 11 years in >> the house in which castro in prison his victims has since been demolished, a move intended to help his victims move on with their lives. while prison and -- officials
say an investigation into ariel castro's death is now underway. >> just a decade ago, it probably would have been hard to imagine a smartphone becoming such an essential part of our lives. are you ready for a smart watch it is theis betting latest mobile battleground and has unveiled a product with the screen that can even run apps. technology correspondent has the details. it seems like everyone is obsessed with their smartphone. now the giants of the technology world are opening a new front in their battle for our attention.
arena with all kinds of hype and hullabaloo, samsung unveiled a smart watch it believes will change the way we communicate. the device enables you to take calls, use a range of apps, even take pictures from your wrist. will this ever be natural? the downside is that the watch has to be linked to a samsung phone, and is another thing you have to recharge every day. you always have to splash out on expensive smartphone, but it is part of a wearable tech revolution, things like cameras that recall whatever you are doing and wrist bands that monitor your health and your activity. google glass, which also links
to your smartphone, is the most obvious example of this new trend, and there are other small widget other smart watch is already on the market, but samsung is ahead of its rival apple in working on the smart watch. samsung wanted to get in there and get a product onto the market. i'm not sure whether it is the will product yet, but you see them doing a lot of innovation on this in the future. the big question is, do consumers really want a big piece of clunky technology on their wrist? samsung has to prove that talking to your watch will be as natural as talking to your phone. >> i'm not totally convinced that people want to have a smart watch.
kay.atty this is bbc world news america. we will see you back here tomorrow. >> make sense of international news -- at bbc.com/news. >> funding of this presentation is made possible by the freeman foundation of new york, stowe, vermont, and honolulu, newman's own foundation, giving all profits to charity and pursuing the common good for over 30 years, and union bank. >> at union bank, our relationship managers work hard to understand the industry you operate in, working to nurture new ventures and help provide capital for key strategic
(daniel snorts like a pig.) and then we're going to play train at school with our friends! and you're coming too! all aboard for the neighborhood of make-believe. be right back. is made possible in part by... the richard king mellon foundation. dedicated for over sixty years to south western pennsylvania's quality of life, and competitive future. and by these pittsburg foundations. working together to enhance and enrich the lives of children for more than seventy-five years. and by the arthur vining davis foundations. dedicated to strengthening america's future through education. adcasting, dedicated to strengthening america's future and contributions to your pbs station, from viewers like you.
♪ and contributions to your pbs station, ♪ a beautiful day for a neighbor ♪ ♪ would you be mine? could you be mine? ♪ ♪ won't you be my neighbor? - ♪ it's daniel tiger's neighborhood ♪ ♪ a land of make-believe ♪ won't you ride along with me? - ride along ♪ - ♪ it's daniel tiger's neighborhood ♪ ♪ so much to do, so much to see ♪ ♪ won't you ride along with me? - ride along ♪ - ♪ i've got lots of friends for you to meet ♪ ♪ in this land of make-believe ♪ a friendly face on every street waiting to greet you ♪ ♪ it's a beautiful day in the neighborhood ♪ ♪ a beautiful day for a neighbor ♪ ♪ in daniel tiger's neighborhood ♪ (daniel laughing) - neiiigh! hi, neighbor! i'm playing with my farm animals! see? this is my horse! neigh! and my cow! mooo!
follow me! (daniel humming) here's my sheep! hello, sheep! baaa! oink! oink! oink! baaa! oink! oink! so, animals, where do you want to go? do you want to go to the farm? baaa! oink! oink! moo! moo! moo! neigh! (mom humming) hi, mom. we're going to a farm! oink! oink! oink! baaa! wanna play with us? my neighbor's playing too! - hi, neighbor! i wish i could play with you, daniel, and you animals too, but i'm doing a bit of cleanup right now. maybe later, ok? - oink! baaa! animals said, ok! - oh! and don't forget, miss elaina is coming over today. - mooo! i remember! thanks, mom! - (both): ugga mugga! (mom humming) - ♪ cleaning, cleaning - moo! oink! oink! oink! oink! baaa! baaa! neiiigh! mooo!