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tv   America Tonight  Al Jazeera  December 10, 2014 4:00am-5:01am EST

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from washington, i'm ray suarez. on"america tonight" - how american intelligence lost its way. the torture report. and the world of dark sites that allowed u.s. operatives to engage in cruel, brutal and even confessions. >> so it's kind of like a legal no man's land. >> a twilight zone if you will correspondent and former c.i.a. agent lindsay moran with insights into the torture report and whether it is needed to stop terrorists
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game on - anonymous threats, a full-scale digital assault. >> you were threatened with threatened. >> did you see the threats - they said who, what, why, where. they were going to murder me and my husband. the goal was central. them. >> "america tonight"s adam may, how the open forum of the internet created a backlash against those that dared to speak up tuning in - research that could mean a break through for children with early signs of autism. michael oku on the effort to reach into their world and break the silence before it's too late.
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good evening, thanks for joining us, i'm joie chen. what the c.i.a. did in response to 9/11 as we learnt from the senate report is nothing short of shocking. the brutality described in the hundreds of pages far worse, the lives far more serious than anyone suspected. not only that, but the bitter truth, the report concludes, is that the torture was pointless, it did not stop a single plot and while the c.i.a. claims it helped to track down osama bin laden, in the end it produced little of value. we begin with al jazeera contributor lindsay moran, who is a former c.i.a. officer on what led the agency down a tortuous path. >> we have to work the dark side, spend time in the shadios in the intelligent world >> reporter: it was that remark by dick cheney, made after the 9/11 attacks that came to define how the bush administration
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would conduct the war on terror. at the time the notion of going to the dark side raised few eyebrows. with the wreckage at the world trade center smouldering, few americans were in the mood to ask questions. >> after 9/11, the country was in a fog after the scope of al qaeda's threat. >> reporter: bruce has been a critic of the detainee policy. >> we have an al-qaeda group attacking the united states of america. we'll get them, we'll crush them. that was captured in part by president bush's statement in the aftermath of the attacks that you are either with us or against us. >> less than a month after 9/11, the war in afghanistan started. looking for a place to imprison captured taliban and al qaeda fighters, the bush administration settled on the u.s. military base at guantanamo bay, cuba. >> guantanamo bay has a curious
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legal status, it's not part of the sovereign territory of the united states. the idea was if we are detaining prisoners on territory that is not sovereign in the united states, our federal judges wouldn't be able to issue a writ of hapius corpus. >> reporter: it's like a legal no man's land. >> a twilight zone. >> reporter: gitmo was seen as secretive and out of the way, an ideal place to integrate terrorists. the first arrived in january 2002. donald rumsfeld made a visit to the base. >> al qaeda is not a country, they are a terror network. it would be a misunderstanding of the geneva convention if one considered al qaeda a terrorist network to be an army.
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>> rumsfeld's view that the detainees were not entitled to the protection afforded prisoners of war is ratified by the department of justice, and by the white house. that was the first of several major decisions, which many believed led to the abuse and torture of detainees. in december 2002 the bush administration made another big decision regarding the detainees. secretary rums felled authorised -- rumsfeld authorised several methods. at the bottom of the memo he questions why making the detainees stand in stress positions was off limits saying "i stand eight to 10 hours a day." in question detainees the c.i.a. used confinement in a box, sleep depravation and waterboarding, a technique in which the subject is made to feel that they are
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drawn. the self-professed architect of inch was water boarded 183 teems. another al qaeda operative was water boarded 83 times. >> these enhanced interrogation techniques were modelled after what the chinese used in the korean war to elicit false confessions. it shows you the craziness that happened after 9/11. >> so what kind of twisted legal manoeuvring took place within the bush administration that ultimately led to a justification of the enhanced methods? >> well, you need to begin with the base lines, that we had laws that prohibited torture. the intent of the enhanced interrogation techniques isn't to inflilent harm and suffering, question. >> in 2003, the culture at gitmo
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made its way overseas. late that year, the general travelled to iraq. there he began to train the soldiers running the abu ghraib prison. bagram air base in afghanistan was another prison where detainees were held, sometimes with fatal results. >> right now there are eight known cases of deaths of detainees in afghanistan. all the cases are being investigated or have been investigated to some degree or another. nonetheless, the harsh treatment of the detainees went largely unnoticed. that is, until april 2004. >> it was this picture and dozens of others that prompted army. >> it was '60 minutes", and the "new yorker magazine", that probing the image of abu ghraib. images of american soldiers abusing detainees horrified the world. here is another it
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'em from -- item from 2004. it's an email about what was seen: facing a backlash president bush was forced to defend his administration against accusations of torture, not just at abu ghraib and gitmo, but cia black sites around the world. >> when we find somebody who may have information regarding a potential attack on america, you bet we're going to detain them. and you bet we are going to question them. >> in 2006 bush issued an order allowing the c.i.a. to continue using many harsh methods, including waterboarding. >> in january 2009. in a first act of president,
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president obama signed an order to ban the use of torture and close the guantanamo bay prison. today the prison continues to operate. still holding 136 detainees. >> lindsay rejoins us on the set. given your experience in the c.i.a. and what you saw in the report, does anything you saw here surprise you? >> nothing surprises me. i have to say i was a little saddened by some aspects when dianne fienstein was giving the executive summary. she refers to a number of c.i.a. officers who voiced questions about the programme. >> concerns. >> concerns, questions, evocation, and indicated that all of those concerns were kind of swept under the carpet. they were silent. it brought me back to a time, to what it's like to work for that organization. i left the agency in 2003. that.
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>> right in the midst. >> i was not privy to details of what was going on at guantanamo, beyond what was talked about in hushed tones in the hallways, and, you know, i remember a friend telling me so and so is back from guantanamo, and bragging about what we are doing to the guys down there. i remember thinking i'm glad i'm on my way out of here. >> let's talk about this. former senior integrator in both iraq wars and you've been an terrorism officer, you understand and have been concerned and critical about the programs. i guess that the pursuant of this is after everything we have learnt about the programmes, did they work? >> well, that's - i think this report lays out graphically that it doesn't work. if they do, it's sporadic and unreliable. it's morally reprehensible.
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there'd have to be an operational relevance to go there. the fact that the brutality and the ipp effectiveness had been hidden is inexcusable. we see that interrogation is a tough thing, a tactic. we've got to be hard, it may have to be brutal. does it go against what we believe to think that there's any way to do this, except to be as hard on the bad guys, or as hard as possible. >> all the hand wringing at the agency about the release of this summary - while they said it was because they were afraid it would put c.i.a. operatives or agents at risk, i think it was that it debunked this life boat that they've been clinging to that this was effective. we had to do this, we had to do this to keep americans safe. and the summary suggests that no, we didn't have to do it. a colossal waste of time. degrading our standing in the world.
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what is going to happen now? >> we need to move interrogation into the 21st century. so. >> what will it take to do that? >> that's an excellent question. we spend billions on intelligence and imagery. one thing said is that interrogations - it is essential to security. let's spend 5-10 million on research, to understand and remind our craft. >> if the senior leader of i.s.i.l. is picked up today. what kind of interrogation will he get. >> my suggestion is you talk to mark fallon, bob mc-fallon and others, who have done that, they tabbed to terrorist over and over effectively, and never once threatened them. >> and gotten answers. >> and got the information. the fact that they got information is well documented prison. >> i think the american public
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has been sold on a mythical idea that there's detainee who has some kind of ticking time bomb information, and in order to get that out of him, you have to torture him. and it's - it's farcical. it's unrealistic. a large part of the american public brought into that. that's in part because the c.i.a. made that case for many years. as a human collector of intelligence, you are not trained to integrate. we are trained to get more bees with honey, to make friends with people, build will bonds. it has been proved to be an effective way of getting someone to give you what you want. >> to underscore the point both of you have worked in intelligence. we appreciate you both being with us. thank you both very much
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when we return, the ground shifts to the big one... >> we have known for decades that these buildings need to be retrofitted, retired. finding the political will to do difficult. >> "america tonight"s michael oku on southern california, fault lines and shaking sense into l.a.'s leaders about getting ready for a worst case scenario later in the hour - head games. a plea for moderation, and why that provoked a fiercer backlash against the women targeted by gamer gangs. >> a conflict that started 100 year ago, some say, never ended... revealing... untold stories of the valor... >> they opened fire on the english officers... >> sacrifice... >> i order you to die... >> and ultimate betrayal... drawing lines in the sand
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that would shape the middle east and frame the conflict today >> world war one: through arab eyes continues episode three: the new middle east on al jazeera america
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>> a deal went against they're own government >> egypt mismanaged it's gas industry >> taking the country to the brink of economic ruin >> this is because of a corrupt deal to an assigned to basically support two dodgy businessmen an israeli one, and an egyptian one... >> al jazeera exposes those who made a fortune betraying an entire nation >> you don't feel you owe an explanation to the egyptian people? >> >> al jazeera investigates egypt's lost power on al jazeera america
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the city of angels sits on shaky ground, that part is well-known. now los angeles is set to embark on a huge project to shore up thousands of buildings, fragile water and communication lines millions will need when the next big one comes. that's the plan. l.a.'s mayor has not identified where the millions needed will come from. as "america tonight"s michael oku reports it will be a massive under taking, in a region that last saw its last major quake 20 years ago. >> i felt a giant picked up my house, ripped it out of the earth and shook it. >> reporter: in the pre-dawn headquarters of january 17th, 1934, susan and her family woke up to a nightmare. a large quake more powerful than anyway the southern californian native experienced. >> my husband grabbed my
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daughter, we went to leave the house and tried to get out of the front door. so much had fallen, that we couldn't escape. >> reporter: when the shaking stopped, 57 people were dead. property damage exceeded $20 billion, making the northridge earthquake one of the deadliest and most history. >> you can see we had to take it down to the frame of the house. >> reporter: aslin's family lost their dream home and spent the next six months living in the driveway. some fared worse, including one man who committed suicide. 20 years on, memories haunt this woman, but they believe the county is not prepared for a big quake if it strikes. the devastation massive, given
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the fault lines that carve the region. their main concern older buildings not yet upgraded to withstand a violent quake. among them so-called soft-story structures that lack sheer walls at their base. mid rise steel buildings with poor welding or concrete structures like these. >> we expect to see some of these buildings just collapse. >> tom heaton is the director of the earthquake engineering research center at the california technology. >> if it was in the day time people would be in the offices and not many would survive. there are literally hundreds of buildings out there that could collapse in that case. >> earlier this year heaton
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co-authored a study using computer models to indicate how buildings would perform in moderate motions. >> buildings with concrete columns and no walls at all - there's plenty of them - those about. >> what you are saying is hundreds, if not hundreds of thousands of unsuspecting residents might live in homes that are highly susceptibility to a major earthquake now. >> i think it's correct. we have known for decades that the buildings need to b retrofitted, retired. finding the political will to do something about it is difficult. how much of the details to debated. >> by some estimates, a strong earthquake could level between 6-10,000 soft story structures alone, threatening tens of thousands of people. we are not just talking about
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ordinary residential and office buildings. dozens of l.a.'s prominent structures are in jeopardy, from the icons off hollywood. to some of the towers that line the myer abbingle mile. -- miracle mile. after years of inia city -- inertia city officials are waking up thanks to media and research released around the 20th anniversary of northridge. in january eric gar setty, mayor, tapped seismologi [s] [t] lucy gowns to prepare the second largest city for a meeting with the big one. >> i wouldn't call it denial that we have quakes. they are inevitable. they don't get what that means. >> reporter: known as the earthquake lady, jones has the task of identifying l.a.'s critical infrastructural risks and marching
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them. >> reporter: with so much to be done, what are the priorities? >> you can't live or run a business without water. lose of it is bad. >> reporter: joan says that the four main aqueducts that feedwater into los angeles cross a major fault line and are likely to break in a large quake. it could take between 12-18 months to repair the aqueducts, leaving millions dependent on whatever reserves are available. >> if you look back in time, it took san francisco 40 years to get back to the level of economic activity in 1905, after the 190 # earthquake. >> to be clear, you are saying that an earthquake in southern economy? >> it could, yes. it could take it down to so far we'd lose more than half of our population. if we don't have water for six months, how long are you willing
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shower. >> people have been lulled into complacency. when you look at how societies deal with earthquakes, california, a year after we get legs leaks through. more than a year passes, it losses out to other priorities, it's too far in the future. that's a reason i'm excited with what we are doing about l.a. this is the first time ever we have a focussed effort on seismic resilience about a bigger threat. >> studying earthquakes excitable. >> yes. >> reporter: you're a scientist. do you get nervous? >> what makes me nervous is the way people respond to the earthquakes. i would love to have a big quake in a place like this, so i can experience it and not worry about it. what you worry about is what human instruction does during the earthquake. >> earthquake.
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whenever the next big one strikes, tom heatan wants to -- heaton wants to give people a head start. he is pushing for funding that would alert people in los angeles to a coming earthquake. before they have felt it. >> that's the good new, the bad news is that it happens quickly. we are talking about seconds, tens of seconds. >> i keep choose by the bed. i don't want to walk over glass. >> there was no time to lose. with their home crumbling around them, her family found a path to safety. >> what is it like to come back to this loam. memories. >> they have since moved to a new neighbourhood that as sin says is less vulnerable to earthquakes. she has more peace of mind.
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she will never forget the lessons of northridge. >> ahead on "america tonight", inside gamer-gate. the world of misonly ni, brutality and trolls, and how even in the open forum of the silenced. >> you were threatened with threatened. >> did you see the threats? they said who, what, why, where and when. they were going to murder me and my husband. the goal was simple. it was to destroy a woman crete eking them. >> adam may with one of the gamer-gate targets. and why she's speaking out later, an autism intervention, and an attempt to save someone very young, and whether it could lead to >> beyond the verdict and on the streets >> there's been another teenager shot and killed by the
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police >> a fault lines special investigation >> there's a general distrust of this prosecutor >> courageous and in depth... >> it's a target you can't get rid of... >> the untold story... >> who do you protect? >> ...of what's really going on in ferguson >> they were so angry because it could have been them >> fault lines, ferguson: race and justice in the u.s. one hour special only on al jazeera america
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>> next tuesday, the landmark series concludes. >> i'm on a mission that i have to keep this business going. >> an intimate look at middle class families. >> i panicked because, how we gonna pay that? >> the issues we face. >> there's no way to pay for it. >> fighting to survive. >> she's like my role model... as in perseverance. >> building a better future. >> it's coming together little by little. >> real life solutions you can't afford to miss. >> we're making it the best that we can. >> "america's middle class - rebuilding the dream". >> next tuesday. >> 7:00 eastern. >> only on al jazeera america. now, a snapshot of stories paying headlines on -- making headlines on "america tonight". wreckage from mh17 arrived on the shoreline of nigeria. the dutch government will lead the investigation amid calls that the united nations should take over. >> police are stepping up security at places of worship
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across new york city, after a knife-wielding man burst into a brooklyn synagogue and somebody stabbed a person in the head hundreds marched in berkeley california protesting a disagreements not to in -- decision not to indict a white police officer over the death of an unarmed black man. many protesters blocked a train and highway. reported. you have heard of them "call of duty", "assassin's creed', "grand theft auto" - 59% of americans are regular players. as gaming goes increasingly mainstream, a darker side of the industry is emerging. "america tonight"s adam may reports on the growing cultural conflict that is gamer gate and some
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images are graphic. >> we are having a war, that is on hold for years. >> breanna is a warrior. a designer in a male world. she created a game. >> i wanted to tell a story where women were the heroes, the same way men got be heroes. once the domain of adolescent boys and me, the appeal is shifting. half of all gamers are women. most games are designed by men. and critics like wu are calling out game designers for the way they portray women. >> you have 30 years of this traditional male gamer told that he is the center of the universe. women, when we exist, are sex symbols.
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now that women are gaming you see that about to change. uncomfortable. >> wu is a lightening rod for gamers, who see the criticisms as an attack on their identity. she says that she was forced to flee her home after receiving death threats from angry gamers. you were threatened with rape and murder, and your husband to have his genitals cut off. >> did you see it. they showed who, what, why, where and when. they were going to murder me and my husband. the goal was simple. they were going to destroy the woman critiquing them. >> let her go. >> no. >> reporter: another sharp critic of male-dominated game design is anita. >> the sexually identified female bodies are designed to function as environmental
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texture is titillating players. >> easy, maybe tonight i'll give you a taste on the house. >> her youtube series accusing game designers of misogamy unleashed a hate-filled backlash. one person created a game allowing users to virtually punch her in the face. she had cancelled a speaking appearance at utah state after someone threatened the deadliest shooting in american history, railing against what feminist lies and moistens have done to the men of america. much of the vitriol superiors on twitter hashtag, gamer gate. originally created by gamers concerned with fair gaming reviews, it has grown into a loose movement. >> gamer-gate is like a nut that you are dragging through the ocean. i think it kind of picks up the worst gamers possible. >> basically you are creating a
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really angry anonymous mob, and i think you can't control a mob. so far three women say they have been forced to leave their homes, targeted by an onslaught of online threats. >> it's dumbfounding if you are looking at it from the outside. you sit and think but we are talking about video games, and you are threatening to rape and games. >> can you hear me. >> deanna studies the role of women in technology and is part of a task force working with twitter to reduce the harass the of twitter on social media. >> people can disagree with you - that's okay. they cannot or should not be able to say i'm going to come rape you and kill you. that is where we start to cross the line a little bit. >> she attributes some of the viciousness of gamer gate to the fact that the gamer community feels under attack. >> when we find a community and
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culture that we fit into that we love that we are passionate about, that makes us feel good for messed up reasons like beating up prostitutes on grand theft auto, we hold on to that. if someone comes in and says hey, part of what you are doing is not okay. people will react in horrible culturally sanctioned ways. >> "america tonight" was given a rare glimpse into the minds of those who consider themselves part of gamer gate. although they say no one here has ever threatened anyone. >> any group of people large enough - there's going to be, like, some people that take it too far. they share a passion for video games. >> you guys are way into it. what is it about video games, why are you into this? >> if i'm stressed out, i play a game. you mellow base line that you
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return to. >> reporter: they downplay the impact of sex and violence. >> it's fantasy, it's relaxing. anyone can do or join. you can include all of new york city in a video game. you can get lost in that. >> this man's new york city apartment is a shrine to his favourite superhero. together he and his friends are lost in the world of "grand theft auto-5." how much money would you say you guys have spent on video games over the last few years. would you give me a ballpark. >> thousands of dollars. >> each game when it comes out is $60 triple a. >> video games have grown to a $100 billion industry, overtaking motion picture movie sales. video gaming press is powerful.
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a bad review can make or break a game. when gaming publications print articles about gamer gate, with titles like "gamers are over", and "it's a horrible time to consider yourself a gamer", tensions in regard. >> a lot of people were offended. it was an assumption that anyone that played video games was misogynistic and oppressing women. they say gamer gait's name is to keep games free of political sworn 27 march. >> if you say you can't have this in a game because it offends this group, and you can't have this, it seems a slippery slope. where would we stop. >> reporter: anita came out with criticism that specifically women are oversexualized. and then what is your rehabilitation to what she had to say. >> i watched her videos. personally.
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>> when she started to get involved in video games. guess what. her head hit millions. the fact that she's under desperation feeds her popularity. she goes the media "i'm victim." charges. >> some supporters accused you of exaggerating the claims, speaking about them too much because you are trying to drum up publicity. >> everything i said is accurate. the reason i talked about this is someone has to take a stand. this keeps happening over and over again. >> i'll answer any question in the world that anyone has about anything - leadership, dynamics of working in this male-dominated space. >> reporter: in an industry where 90% of gamers are male, she hopes to provide cover for female game developers.
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>> the thing that is at stake is women being in game development or not. as an industry, we have o choice. we can keep our head in the sand or address the issue, making the industry a safe place to work. >> reporter: if you support gamer-gate, does that make you a bad guy. >> right now the outcome of gamer gate is terrorism. i think the movement itself is unredeemable. >> there's no indication they are logging off soon. i don't have experiences in my life where i cared about something and i wanted to stand up for it. video games have been under a lot of heat. i don't want to see them change. >> let's get the car and run someone over. >> reporter: the battle for video games is far from game over.
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and it's not game over in any stretch of the imagination, the issue of online threats and harassment has gone to the u.s. supreme court. they heard arguments on another case, and it could decide the nation. >> all these things keep happening. right now, today, we are looking at a case where the woman who accused men at a frat party at the university of virginia, on the internet someone is trying to identify her. this is going to the question of id and the internet. >> it's a lot like what we see in gamer gate. and it's called developing, where you try -- ddoxing,where you try to identify someone. generally in a rape case mainstream media will not identify that person, but you have trolls digging for information and they put it out there. you see that. speech.
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>> it's not necessarily who you think that it is putting out nasty messages. there's a scas where there was an individual receiving this, found out that they were mother. >> called mum. >> yes, but the situation raises questions about the issue of internet and anonymity. on twitter people can get online. profiles don't have to be verified. who do you know who you are talking to. big questions that we may get resolution, depending how the supreme court rules. >> adam may, thank you so much right after the break, a treatment that could change life for millions of american autism. successful? >> first of all, young brains are incredibly ready for learning. second, being able to work at the beginning symptoms may be a
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powerful point to work. some symptoms may be consequences of early symptoms. >> "america tonight"s michael oku on what could be a break through for the very young. and tomorrow on "america tonight", a different watershed. unions in dozens of states, but the fight for same-sex marriage is not over. adam may was an interview with a couple who wish to marry, could redefine same-sex marriage across the country. that's next week on "america tonight".
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more than 2 million americans live with autism. the c.b.c. reports that the rate has been rising. at the same time the treatments are improving of the there is one that holds promise. some are calling it a cure. "america tonight"s michael oku
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on an intensive programme that is giving parents hope. >> reporter: like most 4-year-old boys, noah loves to bounce on the trampoline, playing card games and exploring the furniture. when he was an infant his worried. >> i felt he wasn't as engaged, smiling or reciprocating. we were worried, concerned we were going down that road. >> that road was autism. christian and his mother had been down it before. their two older sons, justin and simon are autistic. >> you had a couple of children already who were autistic. and i have to imagine it was no less - i don't know, a sad feeling to experience this. >> definitely. it was hard. it was hard.
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>> autism now affects one in 68 american children. but for kids with an autistic sibling the risk goes up dramatically to one in five. that is according to research from the u.c., davis mine institute. three years ago christian brought her kids here to participate in a study of children with autistic siblings. >> mel was in a high risk grouch. he had two siblings that had it. he was a boy. children in a group have a 50% chance of developing autism. he was in the highest risk group and showed early signs. >> professor sally rogers evaluated noah when he was nine months old. detecting tell-tale signs, not responding to his name. noah.
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>> reporter: not mirroring gestures. >> can you do that? can you do that. >> here is where things take a turn. rogers was also embarking on a groundbreaking study to see whether intensive intervention with high-risk babies might help. so she started training a small group of parents. >> we were not talking with parents about spending hours a day of doing therapy with their children. we are talking about interactive techniques that would feel think. >> reporter: natural, except what is natural for autistic babies is not to respond. >> they taught me how to use the songs to engage, pause and wait for the songs, wait for him to look up, vocalise and be there
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to reinforce any form of communication. if you have children with autism, they are not reenforing you to continue to do those things. as a parent, you want to make them happy. it's more natural with a child with autism to let them play. >> reporter: at a risk of oversimplifying this, it's almost like you compel yourself to be in his face all the time. >> totally. but to make it complicated, you response. >> reporter: rogers and her colleagues evaluated noah and the other babies every 12 weeks until they were three. results were remarkable. >> we looked at the data. for the first 12 weeks things are going downward a little bit. it's like withwhat is that?" we know that that pattern is the pattern that is the beginning or the precursor of the onslaught of autism. after the first three months of
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slow down. they just turned a corner. you look at the data and every child shows a turn in the developmental line, no matter what we are monitoring. and it goes up into - for almost every baby, the normal range. >> by 15 months noah started engaging. his language started coming, and i just - i remember thinking "i think he's getting this." by 18 months the infant siblings said they didn't see any concerns any more, either. >> reporter: is noah showing signs of autism today? >> no. >> reporter: none? >> no. >> do you know what a squirrel is named? lucy. >> reporter: today noah interacts with everyone. six out of seven children shed autism symptoms and hit milestones. successful? >> first of all young brains are
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incredible aready for learning. second, being able to work at the beginning symptoms, may be particularly powerful point to work. some later symptoms may be consequences of early symptoms. third, autism changes the social environment. a child who has autism, who is not initiating interaction with parents, after a while the environment around that child changes, and the messages stop coming because the child left the circle of the family. potent. of course, you know, as the authors are aware, there are some limitations. the biggest one being there were only seven children, and that they really didn't have a large well-matched control group to see how similar kids would have done without the intervention. >> reporter: deborah from the university of connecticut says rogers results are promising but shouldn't be interpreted as a
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cure. while some older children overcome autism symptoms, their brains don't function likes those of typical children. >> the optimal outcome kids who could be described as recovered were not using the same brain areas as the typical kids. they were apparently compensating by overactivating other areas of the brain. so for that one reason, if no other, i wouldn't say it's likely that the kids were cured. >> reporter: whether or not the intervention cured these kids, it changed lives. >> the idea of a cure for autism - it kind of dependents on what you mean. we don't have biological tests that predict and diagnose autism. we look at the behaviour. autism is a disability, impairing every day function. so if you don't have an impairment in your every day function, it's pretty hard to
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say somebody has autism. >> reporter: as for christian, she is hopeful noah will stay symptom free and is turning her attention to her youngest child, 9-month-old lucy. they are at the mind institute for an evaluation. >> at the end, good news. lucy's not showing early signs. >> terrific. >> reporter: i got to imagine there's something bittersweet about this. had you known about this earlier when you had the two other kids, you might have been able to engage in them in the same way. hindsight, right. it's hard. it's a hard place. we try not to go there too much. it would have been beneficial for justin. he didn't start until he was four. earlier intervention for him, as an infant, if i had known what i
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knew now, he'd probably struggle a lot less. >> reporter: rogers expects autism therapies to improve. to get more precise, like treatments for different cancers or infections. until then, she'll continue to guide parents with a tool she has. when parents ask me about that. what are the chances that we can get rid of autism. we say this is what i want for your child, for them to feel successful and confident and loved. happy with his or her life. is that enough. that's all i want for any of my children. let's focus on that. are >> reporter: are you confident one day there'll be a cure, and treatment? >> i - i think so. i think we are getting closer. i think i - i would love to say yes.
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i think that this - this opens a lot of doors that's nice to see. joining us now is dr paul wong from autism speaks, the organization works on advocacy and science about autism. it is tough to consider this anything near a cure. we are talking about a small number of kids that they have worked with. and the idea that a child could be identified at nine months. >> this was really amazing research. if you talk to professor rogers, she'd be circumspect saying that kids like noah. she wouldn't say they were diagnosed with autism at nine months, they were showing signs, and when you have two older brothers diagnosed with autism, he was at high risk to have autism. because he was at rick and because the other -- at risk, and because the other six kids
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were at high risk, they came in to see if they could help. they found positive results for six out of the seven. >> has the professor says we don't have by logical tests to screen for autism. is there progress on that front? >> that is tough slogging. autism is a behavioural diagnosis. we base it on what the child is like, how they act - their language, social interactions. it's like a number of other diagnosis. depression, schizophrenia. we don't have biological tests. >> your organization has been involved in helping to create some tracking, right? >> some sort of tracking, sorry. autism. >> yes, absolutely. we want to find early diving north-eastics, whether they are behavioural or medical tests that could find the kids as early as possible.
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and then the reason why dr rogers work is important, once you find them you need to find something to offer them. interventions. >> are you seeing that what therapy? >> that's what we have now, is the educational and behavioural therapies, focussing on language, the social interactions, they are the best-proven things. dr rogers research is early. she'd be the first to tell you we need to replicate the works. >> it's promising and important works that she and others in the u.s. and england are working on similar approaches. >> ahead in our final segment, the story behind the bear. who does not love him. winnie the poo's canadian connection next.
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>> start with one issue ad guests on all sides of the debate. and a host willing to ask the tough questions and you'll get... the inside story ray suarez hosts inside story weekdays at 5pm et / 2pm pt only on al jazeera america
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[ ♪ music ] finally from us this hour - a bedtime story.
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generations of us all around the world know and love pooh bear. he is among the most popular children's book. it turns out that he or she has a secret and a past. the bear's tale from al jazeera's [ singing ] >> reporter: one of the best-known most-loved characters in children's literature was inspired by a real bear, acquired a century ago in canada. >> august 19, train. >> the pet was called winnie, after winnepeg. he took her to britain, where she became a regimental mascot. later it was housed at the london zoo, where she came to
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the attention of author aa milne and young son christopher robin. the rest is history. >> when i was a kid they used to say that. whenever anyone told the story, they said they'd have to tell the story. winnie the poo was my great grand bear. >> reporter: an exhibit of photos and diaries opened in toronto. they satellitele known, neglected recollects in a family attic. they are on display and online. a chronicle on how real life can lead to captivating literature. the appeal of childhood as a retreat, a place that they go back to and think of fondly and reflect on. the book really manages to epit somize that. >> the exhibit comes as the world marks the centenary, the outbreak of world war i. the popularity a counterweight
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to the horrors of the conflict. a soldier enreaching the lives of generations. >> lindsay is passing on the family story and tales of winnie the poo to her 2-year-old son cole. he is becoming aware of the family's role in the books that he's learnt to love. >> $20 for a fair. who'd have think it. that's it for us n "america tonight". if you would like to comment on the stories. log on to the website and join the conversation with us on twitter or facebook. goodnight. we'll have more of "america tonight" tomorrow. teach for america is supposed to educate poor children. >> schools where kids need grade teaching the most. >> can unprepared teachers make a difference? >> why are we sending them teachers with 5 weeks of training?
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