tv Amanpour on PBS PBS January 31, 2018 6:00am-6:30am PST
welcome to "amanpour" on pbs. tonight, amid president trump's state of the union address, we drill down on a crisis facing the union. three months after the president declared the opioid epidemic a national health emergency, has anything changed? the attorney general of kentucky joins me, his state has been worst hit. also ahead, the deal of the century. what's next for the state of the president's vow to bring peace to the middle east now that he's taken jerusalem off the negotiating table. i'm joined by chief palestinian negotiator saeb erekat and naftali bennett.
>> announcer: amanpour on pbs was made possible by the generous support of -- good evening, everyone, and welcome to the program. i'm christiane amanpour in donald trump sets his agenda before the american people, the world is wondering how will u.s. foreign policy change this year? so far, trump's deal making skills have yet to solve one of the most intractable problems, and that is the israeli/palestinian conflict and some say his actions so far -- like taking jerusalem off the table and cutting aid to the palestinians -- have made the likelihood of solving it smaller than ever. back w with me to debate are sa erekat, the chief palestinian negotiator and secretary general of the plo executive committee
and the israeli education minister naftali bennet who's also leader of the right wing jewish home party. gentlemen, welcome back to the program and, as i said, as president trump lays out his vision presumably for abroad and at home, this is a big issue so if i might start by asking you what you think of this. let me first play what president trump has set up as his position on jerusalem. >> there was never any deal that came close because it could never get past jerusalem so when people said i sent it back, i didn't send it back, i helped them. because by taking it off the table that was the you have tto issue. >> let me ask you first, minister bennett. that is music to your ears, i suppos
suppose. >> well, i think it's correct in the sense that we've been trying for many decades to solve this big challenge but every time we tried the sachl way and here comes a new approach, a novel approach which i think gives finally a real chance for long-term peace here between the palestinians and israelis. it is a novel and more creative approach because never was there going to be peace predicated on dividing jerusalem so i think this is good news for everyone and i think in the long term it actually progresses our path towards peace. >> so let me ask you, saeb erekat, you heard mr. bennett said never was there going to be peace predicated on a settlement over jerusalem. but i thought that that was one of the predicates of, for instance, the oslo proposal. how do you move forward now? >> well, good evening to both you. i think mr. bennett never accepted the accords.
i don't think that mr. bennett has ever accepted the two-state solution. i don't think that mr. bennett had ever accepted to negotiate with us honestly. as a matter of fact, had he read that, he would have seen the issue that is there for status negotiations was agreed by the israeli government, including that of mr. netanyahu in 1996, jerusalem borders settlement refugees, borders and security. so when president trump, with all due respects, comes and says it's off the table and we could never reach an agreement, so that's dictating and is music to mr. bennett's ears because he never recognized the right of the palestinians to live in their own state side-by-side in the state of israel. the difference between us, christiane, is i recognize the state of israel based on the 1967 lines. i wish to hear from mr. bennett that he's willing to let he's j
the lives of israelis and palestinians. but saying that jerusalem is off the table, that means undermining the best ingredients of muslims and christian palestinians. this is impossible. it's meaningless to have peace. and then president trump promised us that he will never dicta dictate, he will never impose any solution, that he would leave it to the parties and then vice president pence claimed that we stopped the negotiations. it was mr. bennett's government that stopped the negotiation in 2014. >> so let me ask you now, mr. bennett, do you take saeb erekat's invitation to say you recognize the state of palestine along those '67 lines? and also how do you propose -- if you propose at all -- to have any kind of negotiating process under the current terms now if jerusalem is off the table?
>> first of all, we're willing to negotiate with the palestinians directly at any point in time and that's always been the case, including governments. secondly, unfortunately, the palestinians always say no. they said 1948, they said no in 1967, they said no in the year 2000 when ehud barack was offering most of east jerusalem to the palestinians. in the meantime, there is a state of palestine that's been established in gaza. we provided everything, 100% of gaza, pulled back to the '67 lines, kicked out all the jews and the soldiers, pulled them out, handed it over to mahmoud abbas and what we got was a disaster. we have afghanistan in our back yard shooting thousands of rockets at our cities. there's not going to be a second palestine between the jordan
river and the sea but we are willing to discuss many other creative options but we're not going to commit national suicide. >> so let me ask you this then, because not only have you never been offered by the president of the united states that jerusalem is off the table but it was made public when vice president pence came to israel that they would move the u.s. embassy to jerusalem sooner rather than later. but the "new york times" reports that president trump told prime minister netanyahu that israel had "won" on the matter but would have to make concessions to the palestinians in any eventual talks. so what concession is israel willing to give for all this stuff that you've been given by the u.s.? >> we have already made a profound concession. we've handed gaza over to the palestinians and they made a mess of gaza into a failed and terror state.
we're not going to do that again. we gave up 80% of historical land of israel back in the '20s. what we need to see is how bottom up we create good lives for palestinians and israelis side-by-side. we're not going anywhere, they're not going anywhere. we have to figure out how to do it. but it's very tough to do it when the palestinians call and actually will fund their citizens to kill jews. they'll pay $3500 to anyone who kills many jews. they'll only pay $400 to someone who injures a jew. that's the official running rate in the palestinian authority government. that's crazy. so before we talk about peace, i would urge the palestinians stop killing jews and stop as a government paying with american taxpayers' money terrorists to kill jews. >> saeb erekat, your response to that. >> i'm not here to score points and i'm not here to take all of
these lies because judaism to us was never a threat, it's not a threat and will never be a threat and judaism is one of god's great religions like christianity and islam and that's what president abbas is talking about, spridspreading t culture of peace. we don't condone violence, we want to achieve peace with israel through peaceful means but today mr. bennett and mr. netanyahu are aware that they are opening a new road that cannot be used for palestinians, roads that cannot be used for palestinians in 2018. now, if mr. bennett is saying there's no space between the river jordan and the mediterranean, it doesn't mean he wants two states, he wants me to live under his occupation, he wants me to live in his option of one state to a system that's upper side, up side, upper side and i'm telling you this no
palestinian will accept and the other option -- many palestinians are saying they want equal rights, israelis will never accept this. so what does this mean? it means that mr. bennett's ideology is going to lead to deepening the cycle of violence and counterviolence between palestinians and israelis and when i say my only option is a two-state solution, in the state of palestine, to live with security and safety with israel, i'm here to save lives. when abu mazen said in his speech an arabic term that means come on, he said it means to diminish your home. literally yes but if he's a middle easterner he know this is term is about come on and also the lies that we pay to kill jews. that's not fair, that's not true at all. the security cooperation continues between palestinians and israelis. ask your commanders. just scoring points with not save lives for israelis and palestinians.
christiane, i said seven times, i have many grand children, i have four sons and daughters, i want them to live like mr. bennett's grandchildren and sons. i want to live and let live and he's saying he will not allow me to be independent in my own state and he thinks that i will go forever living under this apartheid regime. there are roads in the west bank that he is opening today i cannot use as a palestinian, only israelis can use. never in the darkest hours of south africa's apartheid were blacks prevented to use roads. wake up. it should be a wakeup calls to israeli. i'm here to say yes. and the only option is to live and let live. the only option is a two state solution between the palestinians and israelis on the 196 lines. i want to make peace with israel, you're my neighbor, that's what counts. >> i would like -- >> and hopefully international law -- >> sorry i don't mean to interrupt you but i do need to ask because to both of you whether your biggest mediator, patron, honest broker, the
united states can still be an honest broker, i guess mr. bennett for you, if the united states is not considered an honest broker anymore, certainly by the opposition, the palestinians, how does that serve your cause? and if, for instance, president trump says he wants to cut off aid to the palestinians like they've cut off aid to the u.n., unrra in gaza, how is that good foris? israel always said that the palestinians having a decent economic situation is in israel's security interest. >> we want to live side-by-side and we want to certainly see prosperity with the palestinians however the current money is going to roughly one billion scheckel a year, that's a quarter of a billion dollars, american money, which is directly funding the paying
terrorists to kill jews. that's not a lie, it's the running rate. i have here the document, i can always show it. i will say again, it's $3,500 to any palestinian who murders many jews and is sent 30 years in jail. that's the official monthly payment. secondly, the blatant lies about apartheid, israel has a supreme court justice who is arab. we have over a dozen members of parliament who are arab. how many jews do you have in your parliament? how many jews do you have in the entire -- is a jew allowed to enter the palestinian snort he's n -- authority? he's not even allowed to enter. this is not the approach we need. i live in this country, i'm not going anywhere, he's not going anywhere. we have to figure out how to live together. it won't work by someone who makes a career out of whining and killing jews. that's what the palestinian
government has become an expert in whining, blaming, saying no and killing jews. that's not the way to go. we founded one palestinian state, it failed now we have a new approach which is autonomy, side-by-side, i think this can work, we have to give it a try. >> so you say you think it can work, i want to ask you because saeb erekat mentioned it early on. both sides are working together still on security matters for instance, there are reports that palestinian forces uncovered five ieds on a road used by the israeli army and the palestinian prime minister will meet with the israeli finance minister to discuss your joint economic interest so is it time to have discreet, direct negotiations if the palestinians are saying that america can't be the mediator anymore if it's taken such one sided policies. >> well, i say two things. first of all, at any point in
time we're certainly willing to cooperate on all levels with the palestinians. we live side-by-side, we have to cooperate on security, agriculture, economy, infrastructure, we're riding the same roads and living in the same land. secondly regarding the mediator, the previous administration was not always considered very favorable towards israel yet we never said drop the mediator so we're willing to negotiate in any form the other side would want to talk, direct talks war the mediator, that's fine we want to have negotiations without pre-conditions. >> so i have a minute left. saeb erekat, what do you say? your ministers are still meeting with israeli ministers as i just laid out. is there a way to get meaningful negotiations between the two
sides? >> mr. bennett has talked about gaza is in this situation because you did this unilateral. south lebanon you did unilateral. you did two bilateral agreements with israel and jordan, they stood the test of time. your unilateralism dictations will not work. that's gaza. had you done it with us in partnership it would have been different. secondly, you keep mentioning that we may money to kill jews and so on. that's not true at all. i challenge you. that's not true at all. and president putin of russia invited mr. abbas and netanyahu to have talks in russia. mr. abbas accepted, mr. netanyahu, because of you and your party threatening to withdraw from the government, president sisi of egypt invited, president abbas accepted and prime minister netanyahu refused now if you accept the terms of reference provided for and the agreement signed in oslo between
us and you, the terms of preference, resolution 242338 ending the occupation that began in '67 and the issues for negotiations are jerusalem to begin with border settlement, refugees, water and security and no side should take any actions, will the's talk. let's do it. it's you and i will who make the concessions required for peace and the american president, believe me, made a very strategic mistake by doing this unilaterally by announcing this most important thing. this should have been done by negotiations between us. there will never be another solution other than two state zblugs the let's talk is the note of hope i'm going to take after this. we wish your region good luck. thank you for joining us naftali bennett and saeb erekat. now, president trump also gives his vision of the state of the union inside the union and while we look at the state of america's health, the opioid
crisis is growing. the ripple effect is tearing through american society and trump's forgotten voters, in one of the hardest-hit states, kentucky, it's fuelling property crime as burglars take not television sets but raid the bathroom cabinets for drugs. meantime an autoparts supplier in the state had to let 41 people go in a single shift because they failed a drug test. today the u.s. attorney general jeff sessions visited kentucky to talk about this crisis and i spoke to the state's attorney general about the fight that he's taking to the pharmaceutical companies demanding that they take responsibilities after a deck kate of pumping these drugs into his state. welcome to the program. >> thank you for having me on. >> we understand around the u.s. some eight to ten million are addicted to opioids and 2016 was
a record year for deaths in excess of 42,000 put that in contex context. it's the single greatest challenge to the threat to the lives of my people in kentucky. we lose over four kentuckiens everyday to a fatal overdose. it's stealing parents from children and children in parents. we have more children in foster care and kinship care being taken by their relatives than ever in the history of our commonwealth and it's everywh e everywhere. everyone in kentucky lost someone they care about. i lost a neighbor that lives eight houses down from me. you see it on my streets everyday it was seven months ago at 3:00 in the afternoon that another individual and i had to pull an overdosing man from a car. it's that bad here.
>> attorney general, how does it get so bad? >> what we saw was a massive flood of opioid painkillers entering kentucky and being described to people who should have never been taking them in the first place. >> former attorney general of mississippi, mike moore, spoke to us about this very issue and he's combatting it, he says, like he took on big tobacco. he says the doctors who are prescribing have also been tricked. listen to this. >> everyone should have known these were addictive drugs but doctors were duped. an 1% chance of getting less addicted as long as you were under a doctor's care so they prescribed these for lots and lots of people. >> we had distributors of the drug who delivered millions of pills to small communities that have 800 or 900 people. >> and i think technological
beshear, you have millions and millions of pills in areas that only have few people. for instance in one of your counties 40,000 people, more than 18 million doses of opioids delivered in just six years. >> and that was only from one of those national distributors.cke. so one company with one-third of the market put 18 million pills into an eastern kentucky county called floyd county. christiane, that's more than 400 pills during that period for every man, woman, and child. no responsible company could see that happening and think all is well. it means they made a conscious decision to put their profits over the lives of our people and we are seeing the results. it's not just death, it's communities being torn apart, children not having parents to rise them. outbreaks of hiv and hepatitis-c that go along with it. a shattered work force where as
we're coming out of our recession we don't have enough drug-free workers to fill important parts of our economy. this has been the challenge of our times and our communities have been devastated. >> what do you want to hear from the president or from whoever might be responsible for trying to stop this? what action can you take? whether it's preventative action, treatment, or legal action if there is any to be taken against these companies? >> well, in kentucky, we address this epidemic everyday in the attorney general's office first on the law enforcement end. we not only go after doctors who we believe are knowingly wrongfully prescribing and flooding our communities with pills, pharmacies that would do the same, but we also have launched a prescription disposal program called the kentucky opioid disposal program which aims at cleaning out every single medicine cabinet where as you know here in the united states we keep our unused prescription pills.
that is a supply that continues to drive addiction and we're trying to deactivate each and every one of those. >> so attorney general beshear, 80% of those addicted to opioids get so through doctor's prescriptions. have you managed to convince your doctors to stop prescribing? >> we work hard at that. in kentucky we were hit with what we call pill mills about a decade ago and those were small clinics that claim to be medical clinics but in the end was where people would come and exchange cash for a prescription and millions upon millions of opioids flooded especially eastern kentucky during that period. we worked very hard to crack down and to regulate those types of clinics to where now the pain management clinics out there are closely monitored and for the most part try to do a good job but there is still so much work to do because as you mentioned, there are so many prescriptions
that are out there sitting in people's medicine cabinets. like you said, 80% of folks using heroin right now in the united states got addicted through pills and for 70% of the folks abusing those pills, it wasn't their own prescription, it was a family member or friend so we have to understand we have a huge supply of addictive medications sitting in our homes right now and that's what our opioid disposal program is aimed at -- providing every family a deactivation pouch that in less than a minute they can deactivate up to 45 opioids in their home. that lets them do something tangible to address what seems like a hopeless epidemic, to take one little step and to move us in a positive direction. >> and i guess finally in the bigger picture, you have said that you want to try to take the u.s. postal service to task because certain delivery services like fedex and u.p.s. are more cop, of some of the
deliveries that are being made. what is the u.s. postal service not doing right? >> in the end, we know significant amounts of really dangerous drugs, especially fentanyl, which is significantly more powerful than heroin or carfentanyl are coming into the united states through the postal service. now i believe they try to pass a bill in congress last year that would have required additional screening and i think there was a concern about dollars and funding we cannot -- not fund catching these dangerous drugs as they come into the united states. i'll give you an example. that individual overdosing in downtown lexington at 3:00 p.m. had been smoking carfentanyl we believe while driving in the middle of the day and i think about my seven and eight-year-old could have been in a car right across the street
if these drugs can kill you the first time or you can kill somebody else, we have to take advantage of that opportunity. >> it's a dramatic picture you paint and we certainly wish you good luck. attorney general andy beshear thanks for joining us from kentucky tonight. >> thank you so much. >> crippling crises both at home in the united states and in the anks for watching amanpour on pbs. join us again tomorrow night.