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tv   BBC World News America  PBS  December 7, 2017 5:30pm-6:01pm PST

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>> this is "bbc world news america." funding of this presentation is made possible by the freeman foundation, and kovler foundation, pursuing solutions for america's neglected needs. >> planning a vacation escape that is relaxing, inviting, and exciting is a lot easier than you think. you can find it here in aruba. families, couples, and friends can all find their escape on the island with warm, sunny days, cooling trade winds, and the crystal blue caribbean sea.
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nonstop flights are available from most major airports. more information for your vacation planning is available at >> and now, "bbc world news." jane: this is "bbc world news america." reporting from washington, i am jane o'brien. violent protests follow president trump's announcement recognizing jerusalem as israel's capital. the palestinian group hamas has called for a third intifada. senator al franken announces he is stepping down after allegations of sexual misconduct and pressure from democratic colleagues to quit. senator franken: today i am announcing that in the coming weeks, i will be resigning as member of the united states senate.
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jane: and we all know it is a culinary treasure. now it is a cultural one as well. the pizza makers of naples are celebrating tonight. welcome to our viewers on public television in america and around the globe. the leader of hamas has called for a popular uprising, or intifada, following president trump's recognition of jerusalem as capital of israel. dozens were injured in clashes today between palestinians and israeli security forces in ramallah, bethlehem, and east jerusalem. but the white house is standing by its decision, and the vice president will be traveling to the region. the bbc's middle east editor jeremy bowen starts our coverage. jeremy: over the years, palestinians have burned many american flags. the question is whether something fresh is happening,
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whether this old conflict has entered a new stage. volleys of tear gas were directed at palestinian demonstrators by israeli security forces in towns around jerusalem. many palestinians have serious doubts whether these street clashes change anything. jerusalem, though, is as special for palestinians as it is for israelis, and trump's decision to ignore palestinian kinds to the city has caused real anger. israel's prime minister, benjamin netanyahu, is jubilant. he posted this video saying that these are great days in zionism's history. but these are not great days for israel's foreign relations. many countries feel they have a stake in jerusalem.
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turkey's president erdogan, on a visit to greece, says the u.s. and israel were trampling over international law, rejecting a u.n. resolution. mahmoud abbas, the palestinian president on the right, traveled to jordan for emergency talks with king abdullah, whose warnings of danger ahead were ignored by president trump. afterwards, president abbas said america no longer had a political role in the middle east. in gaza, the leader of hamas called for drastic action. "it is time," he said, "for a third palestinian uprising, another intifada." uprisings carried a heavy price and did not get them independence. an intifada is a dangerous option which many palestinians don't want to repeat. but their anger is real. this is a demonstration in the palestinian refugee camp in jordan, and they have international support.
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the americans are preparing a new peace plan. it will need something very special to succeed. it is important to realize that there is no peace process and there hasn't been for a few years, but back when they used to have serious peace talks, the negotiators steered well clear of the issue of the future of jerusalem, and that is because all sides realize that it can unleash really powerful and potentially destructive forces. they treated it as a politically radioactive issue. it was tense tonight at the damascus gate in the old city. sometimes in jerusalem, nationalism and religious difference are overwhelming. perhaps it is too much to hope for a peace deal. jeremy bowen, bbc news, jerusalem. jane: a brief time ago i spoke to former congresswoman jane harman, who serves as president of the woodrow wilson center.
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a lot of angry reaction, which many people were expecting, but what do you think are the long-term consequences of this decision? ms. harman: too few people realize that it has been the policy of the united states for 22 years to move the embassy to jerusalem. i voted for the the jerusalem embassy act, as did most members of congress, in 1995, and it includes a waiver, and president trump signed the waiver again yesterday. every six months he waives moving the embassy to jerusalem. what he said yesterday was his intention is, without a time frame, to move the embassy to jerusalem. he also did not say that jerusalem would be the exclusive capital of israel. so what i see here, and i think others i have talked to confirm this, is a deal he is trying to make, a huge deal, to use his formulation, which would involve massive saudi aid to the palestinians in exchange for
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their agreement to a smaller landmass in their state. the israelis would agree to a state of israel and a contiguous palestinian state. and then the whole thing would -- the two states, plus the u.s. support, plus the strong saudi and i assume uae support, would be a big block to iranian ambitions in the region. the only thing i don't like about this is i think the iranian people also should be our friends, and there is a large shia population in the sunni countries surrounding israel. hopefully that is another phase, to repair the relationship with the iranian people. jane: given that there is no peace process at the moment, do you think donald trump was right to shake things up in this way? ms. harman: well, he is right to
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try to help forge a two-state solution agreed to by the leaders on the ground. that has been the ambition of at least the three prior presidents. and it certainly was and is the intention of u.s. policy to move the embassy to jerusalem at an appropriate time. so yes, i think he is right to try to push this. whether he will achieve this, i don't know. it is obviously troubling to see the demonstrations on the ground -- not unpredicted. and i surely hope that we evolve a strategy for the whole region. a lot of the reason for the uprising in the jordanian refugee camps is the mess in syria. those refugees are syrian, they are not palestinian. jane: you have met with a lot of palestinian leaders on the ground. what do they make of america's role generally at the moment? ms. harman: well, i think there is a lot of disappointment that america hasn't been more successful. people did not see a strategy in the last administration and i don't think they see a strategy in this administration across
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the region. it is something i wish congress would involve itself with by passing an authorization to use military force in the region, as many are recommending. but the palestinian leaders are disappointed, and in january, when the trump administration first announced its intention to move the embassy without the groundwork being laid, and had to roll it back, palestinians i spoke to -- i was literally there on the ground in ramallah -- said it was tantamount to a declaration of war. i think the trump administration has gotten smarter and made an effort on the ground through emissaries including jared kushner to lay the predicate for this. whether it can happen, i don't know, but i do think it would be a great credit to the trump administration if they could forge or help the parties on the ground to forge a two-state solution. jane: jane harman, thank you very much for joining us. for reaction from capitol hill, republican congressman scott
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taylor joined me and christian fraser a brief time ago for the program "beyond 100 days." i started by asking him if it was worth risking this turmoil to fulfill a campaign promise. rep. taylor: it is not just a campaign promise, it is american policy, and to be honest with you, we should take every effort necessary to protect people, as should host nations around the middle east, but the reality is, it is american policy, and for those who want to do harm, those who are terrorists, they don't get a vote on american foreign policy. we should not be intimidated by that. should we take all precautions to protect people? no question about that, and there are long-standing folks like diplomats and military folks who agree with this. there are some who don't agree with it. i get that, i understand that, but i think this is the right thing to do. folks who want to do harm, they don't get a vote on american foreign policy. jane: congressman, is this administration still committed
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to the peace process and brokering a deal, and more importantly, to a two-state solution? rep. taylor: i don't know exactly where they are. i know they are committed to getting a deal. it is important to understand this as well -- right now there is no deal. who do you negotiate with? you mentioned gaza, the west bank, and you have the palestinian authority controlling the west bank, and folks in gaza controlled by hamas. they don't agree with each other. it is not just a bilateral negotiation, it is trilateral. there is no deal right now, and quite frankly, something like this, an american position being taken -- look, i agree with the president. i'm glad he had the guts to do it. but this does create a shake up and it potentially creates the opportunity to change the dynamic, because the peace process has been stagnant for decades. if we continue to do the same thing, we will get the same results. jane: congressman scott taylor there.
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for the fourth day, wildfires continue to roll through southern california with gusty winds fueling the flames. roughly 200,000 people have been evacuated, and hundreds of homes have been destroyed. right now there are 4 major fires, and authorities have been working around the clock to contain them. the bbc's james cook has the latest. james: the american west was never really tamed. the weather here was always wild and dangerous, and in a warming world, it seems to be getting worse. at the biggest blaze in ventura county last night, the burning brush looked more like lava. it is now day three of this fire, and it still shows no sign of stopping. the wind has just picked up in the past few minutes, and the fire is really flaring up on the hillside there. and pushing along this canyon. there are some homes down there. we can hear shouts in the valley. hand there are some families refusing to leave. the walkers are among them. they wouldn't answer the door, but they are inside and intent on staying put despite the danger lurking nearby.
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at least two dozen horses have died in this fire, which is the worst here in living memory. >> always difficult. it's something you have to be used to, because this is a very canyon life, and fires and floods are common. jame: but even by those standards, this is pretty spectacular. >> it is. this doesn't happen very often. last time it did happen, 1985, and i was here for that event also. james: in the exclusive suburb of bel air, they attacked the fires aggressively and successfully saving scores of homes. the musician lionel richie and socialite paris hilton were among those forced to flee. every firefighting aircraft in the united states has been summoned to california, and they are making a big difference. in times of crisis, extraordinary moments of compassion. here, a man apparently in the stress runs to rescue a rabbit. one little life save.
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several new fires have broken out in the last few hours. containing them is a superhuman effort, but mother nature will likely have the last word. james cook, bbc news, california. jane: i look at the day's other news. russia's foreign minister sergey lavrov has told u.s. secretary of state rex tillerson that american military exercises and aggressive rhetoric are causing an escalation in tension on the korean peninsula. the 2 met on the sidelines at a conference in vienna. the chinese government has put ambitious plans to eradicate coal fired heating on hold after homes, schools, and hospitals were left without winter warmth. the central authorities had originally ordered northern provinces to convert from cold -- coal to gas and electricity by the end of the year to reduce pollution. democratic senator al franken has announced he is resigning after growing pressure from his colleagues following a series of sexual misconduct allegations. in a speech on the senate floor, the minnesota lawmaker defended his record while taking a swipe at the president and
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republicans. the bbc's rajini vaidyanathan reports. rajini: for years he was a standup comic. but today al franken took to the mic as his political career came crashing down. senator franken: today i am announcing that in the coming weeks, i will be resigning as member of the united states senate. rajini: his resignation came after a number of his colleagues called for him to go over claims he had sexually harassed women. senator franken: some of the allegations against me are simply not true. others i remember very differently. rajini: the release of this picture was the beginning of al franken's downfall. radio host leeann tweeden says he forcibly groped and kissed her as they were hers a comedy skit for u.s. troops in kuwait in 2006. it prompted other women to come forward with similar stories. a celebrity turned politician, he was a well-known face on u.s. television before he won election to the u.s. senate in 2008.
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in recent weeks, the corridors of congress have been rocked by accusations of sexual harassment and by criticism for the way it has been handled. al franken is the second democratic politician to resign over this. but on the republican side, the case of roy moore, who wants to join the ranks here, is being handled very differently. senator franken: i of all people am aware that there is some irony in the fact that i am leaving while a man who has bragged on tape about his history of sexual assault sits in the oval office, and a man who has repeatedly preyed on young girls campaigns for the senate with the full support of his party. rajini: a reference there to roy moore, who is running for senate in the state of alabama, and who is accused of sexual misconduct dating back several decades,
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including an allegation he sexually abused an underage girl. roy moore: i do not know any of these women, did not take any of that date -- date any of these women, did not engage in any sexual misconduct. rajini: president trump is endorsing him, and he has a good chance of winning next week's elections. it is a sign of just how split politics and the country is over sexual harassment. rajini vaidyanathan, bbc news, washington. jane: a brief time ago i spoke to jay newton-small, author of "broad influence." al franken has made it very clear that he is resigning under pressure from his party. is this a rush to judgment, or actually a turning point? jay: i would say it is more of a political situation. it is hard for democrats to criticize roy moore, the republican candidate in alabama -- it will happen on december 12, and the republican candidate
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has been accused of all of these groping women, especially young girls, 14, 16, 17 years old -- it is hard for democrats to criticize him and say it is unacceptable that he is still running for office and has not stepped out of the race while on the other hand al franken is out there with these allegations against him and they are saying, well, that is very double handed. why are you letting al franken keep his seat while roy moore is running for election? now, of course, the gravity of these charges are enormously different. roy moore is accused of basically groping and trying to romance 14-year-old girls, pedophilia. al franken is accused of copping a feel during a photo op -- maybe trying to kiss somebody -- jane: how much of a moral test is this, because minnesota is a safe seat? they can replace al franken with another democrat. they are not losing anything. jay: exactly. the sense is both with al franken and john conyers, the congressman from michigan who
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stepped down, both of those are safe seats. really what it gives democrats is the moral authority to say that we are the party of zero tolerance, the party of women. jane: what will it make any difference? there is not much republicans can do about roy moore at the moment. jay: no, and that is the thing -- democrats win either way in this case, because if roy moore is elected, they get to spend the next year saying that the republicans elected pedophiles to congress, and this is what you get, and they get to throw back every allegation against him for the next year. if they lose, they can say that the voters are not with you, the voters are with us, and you are a corrupt party and are failing americans. jane: what about the role of voters? ultimately they are the ones that make the decision. what does that say to you about the broader picture here you go --picture here? jay: look, in these kinds of elections everything is local,
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so to say that this is a nationalized election never quite holds true. if a democrat actually does win this, that is a huge seachange, but if not, look, it is alabama and these are republican voters. jane: jay newton-small, thank you very much. you are watching "bbc world news america." still to come on tonight's itgram, australia makes official, legalizing same-sex marriage and launching into celebration. the humanitarian situation in yemen is now so dire that president trump has intervened to urge saudi arabia to allow aid to get to those worst affected. the blockade has been eased, but more than 7 million people are on the brink of famine, with serious outbreaks of cholera and bacteria. -- did the area. reporter: for more than a month, saudi arabia and coalition allies have imposed a blockade on human sports, aiming to stop
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weapons smuggling after a missile was fired at the saudi capital, riyadh. in the past week or so, there is been a slight easing of the blockade come with ships being allowed to dock at 2 ports in the hands of houthi rebels. vaccines have been flown into the capital, sanaa. but aid agencies say all this is just a trickle. >> in need to import virtually all their food them all their we need a lotans of ships every single day. cholera epidemic has claimed the lives of 2200 people. 7 million are said to be at risk of famine. and the finding shows no sign of abating. the saudi led coalition has again carried out airstrikes on yemen, as the houthi group tightens its grip on the capital after killing former president
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alley abdullah saleh. that death on monday was a highly significant moment. in theverthrown saleh arab spring after years of broken which triggered this civil war. as for the blockade, which prime minister theresa may called for it to be lifted during her visit to saudi arabia last week. and in a rare statement of concern, president trump has demanded that the saudis that more humanitarian supplies flow in. philippa thomas, bbc news. jane: in a landmark vote, australia's parliament has approved the legislation of same-sex marriage, following an overwhelming yes vote from australians who took part in a postal survey last month. our correspondent reports on the reaction. reporter: after years of
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division and dispute, in the end and emphatic,able as australian mp's voted in favor of legalizing same-sex marriage. campaigners in the gallery applauded the politicians and they applauded them back. the vote marks a victory for them and prime minister malcolm turnbull, who could not hide his delight. prime minister turnbull: what a day for love, for equality, for respect. australia has done it. every australian had their say, and they said get on with it, and the parliament has gone on with it, and we have voted today for equality, for love. it is time for more marriages, more commitments, more love, more respect. reporter: it follows last month's yes vote in a national survey on legalizing same-sex marriage, celebrated with gusto. that put pressure on politicians to deliver the change before the end of 2017.
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australia will join a growing list of countries including great britain, ireland, the united states, and canada, where gay marriage is already legal. >> today i am as proud to call myself an australian as any other day of my life. i realized what this means to young lgbtq people across the country for them to know that the person that they love on the way that they feel is equal to that as anyone else. and the change that will mean for future generations is significant. reporter: the change has its critics. some pushed for special protections in law for people who oppose gay marriage. the changes were voted down. today will not be the end of the debate, but it is the end of a long and often difficult chapter in australian politics. jane: flamenco dancing, kabuki theater, and the tango, all on
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unesco's list of cultural heritage. now you can add the art of neapolitan pizza making. the bbc's james reynolds got the lucky assignment of getting a taste of the excitement. james: you might not think that pizza in naples needs unesco protection. but it is part of people's -- the world's intangible heritage. i want to show you how it is done. the pizza maker, and unesco has decided what he is doing here is unique to naples. it may be copied across the world, but it started here first. he is very happy. obviously, a leading question. and then just have a look here at what happens to the world's intangible heritage. it goes into the oven for about two minutes. it may be intangible, but in the end, you can't eat it.
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jane: the question is, do they ever put pineapple on it? it is the sacrilegious for some, but i like home why it. -- i like hawaiian. i'm jane o'brien. thanks for watching "bbc world news america." >> with the bbc news app, our vertical videos are designed to work around your lifestyle, so you can swipe your way through the news of the day and stay up to date with the latest headlines you can trust. download now from selected app stores. >> funding of this presentation is made possible by the freeman foundation, and kovler foundation, pursuing solutions for america's neglected needs. >> planning a vacation escape that is relaxing, inviting, and exciting is a lot easier than you think. you can find it here in aruba. families, couples, and friends can all find their escape on the island with warm, sunny days, cooling trade winds, and the
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crystal blue caribbean sea. nonstop flights are available from most major airports. more information for your vacation planning is available at >> "bbc world news" was presented by kcet, los angeles.
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captioning sponsored by newshour productions, llc >> o'brien: good evening. i'm miles o'brien. judy woodruff is away on the newshour tonight: california wildfires rage out of control. thousands are forced to evacuate around los angeles as winds continue to fuel the flames. then, we continue our series on iran's rising influence in iraq. tonight, how the battle against isis has brought iran further inside iraq's security operations. >> reporter: before u.s.-backed iraqi forces launched an operation to take back mosul from isis, it was the p.m.f. that cleared out isis from qayyara and many other towns on the outskirts of mosul. >> o'brien: and, making sense of the tax cut experiment in kansas. what the nation can learn from one state's attempt to grow its


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