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tv   News  Al Jazeera  August 3, 2015 8:00pm-9:01pm EDT

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hi everyone this is al jazeera america. i'm john siegenthaler. western wildfires. emergen california. >> as we look at the amount of fire activity we have already had this year we have a long road ahead of us. fog of war, controversy over new u.s. support for syrian rebels fighting isil. and more civilians getting caught in the cross fire. set in stone, removing a
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symbol of hate or whitewashing history? >> the confederacy actually happened so i don't think anyone benefits from erasing or attempting to erase any part of our history. >> debate over massive memorial in georgia. plus photo finish stunning shots from around the globe, the winners of "national geographic"'s 2015 photo contest. ♪ >> wind and drought are fuelling wildfires in california. more than 20 are burning tonight across that state. devouring forests and forcing thousands of residents from their homes. the governor has declared state of emergency, and the national guard has joined thousands of firefighters working day and night. many struggling to contain one
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enormous blaze that tripled in size this weekend. the rocky fire in the foothills and canyons of northern california is proving to be the most destructive of the wild fires scorching the state. it has incinerated nearly 60,000 acres and more than a dozen homes. it continues to burn for a sixth day, threatening thousands of structures forcing residents in three countries to evacuate. >> we have seen a couple of spot fires, and those pretty much escalated and got pretty big, and took over the whole side of the mountain. >> reporter: more than 12,000 people have been forced to cape to evacuation centers like this one. >> it's not every day that you have a community of people that are worried about losing their homes together. >> reporter: the state is fighting this fire with efrl it has. more than 2,000 firefighters are working day and night. helicopters, fire engines,
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bulldozers and military firefighting ma -- planes have joined the fight. >> there is steep terrain. these areas are extremely dry. temperatures in excess of 100 degrees. a lot of these areas this fire is burning there's no roads. >> reporter: monday the fire was 12% contained and it is expected to take another week to bring it under control, but that won't be the end of it. >> as we look at the amount of fire activity we have already had this year and the current number of fires that have started in the last couple of days due to lightning, we have a lot ahead of us. >> reporter: researchers are also looking at changing weather patterns there. jake ward has more on the that. jake? >> reporter: john the scene behind me is one of truly hell on earth. just over this rise is 60,000 acres burning, and we're seeing
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basically emergency responders from all over the state and of all shades coming together to try to fight this. this isn't just a fight against the local conditions it's also big global conditions that are driving the terrible fight that these firefighters are in. the western states of the u.s. are on fire. and northern california is the latest casualty. we just passed the check point past which residents are no longer able to go. we're about three and a half hours north of san francisco, driving into a 60,000-acre blaze that is defied all of the traditional expectations firefighters would have about a big wildfire this time of year. the rocky fire should have peaked after two days but at that point the firefighters found the fire gaining strength. now five days in there is no sign this is going to do anything but get bigger. >> the fire behavior is extreme.
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and the people out there fighting the fire very seasoned veterans are saying this is off of the charts extreme. >> reporter: years of drought have dried the area around here. the firefighters are trying to defend a two-lane highway. if the fire jumps across this barrier, there is no stopping it. and this 60,000 acre fire could get way out of control. we were repeatedly warned to be able to run to our vehicles at any moment. >> if something happens and we get fire over there it will be best for us to move as quickly as we can. >> reporter: this is also a fight against the global effects of climate change. the nights are traditionally cool and humid. but warming oceans in recent years means the evens are hot
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and fight against california's record drought, but also against global forces and for the moment those forces appear to be winning. john as we returned from the fire highway 20 which as you heard there, forms the natural northern border of the fire unfortunately the fire has now jumped across it. the other side of the road was on fire. we're seeing tankers, helicopters, attacking the far side of highway 20 as fast as they possibly can. >> you talk about a sense -- this is a new kind of fire. tell us what makes it different. >> reporter: we're talking out here to 30, 40-year veterans people who have seen the worse that the fire season can offer, and they said they have never seen anything like this before. they traditionally expect a fire like this would peak after a
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couple of days. one firefighter said they were looking at a 5% containment, that is 5% of the total area was contained at that point. and another day went by and they only had 5% in check. but they are just stalling out, the fire was actually winning, that when you are bringing together almost 3,000 firefighters, the fact they were losing for a moment that suggests we are in a very new phase when it comes to fires like. >> volunteers make up about a quarter of the firefighters. some of them are convicts looking for a second chance. sarah hoye reports. >> reporter: fighting wildfires in california. it's a dirty, difficult, and dangerous job. while land firefighters are
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often knee deep in rugged and hard to reach terrain. from sun up to sundown, these men and women usually work 24-hour shifts. >> reporter: what are you in for? >> assault with a deadly weapon and 2-11. >> reporter: what is 2-11? >> robbery? >> i'm in for assault with a deadly weapon firearm. >> reporter: they are all charged with a low-level felony or less. they have roughly 4,000 inmate volunteer firefighters. what is the biggest misconception out there? >> i don't think the nation really knows how much that they con trick bought to the conservation program. but when they are saving those homes, the community just doesn't care whether they are inmates or free california people. they are just thankful. >> reporter: close to 3400 wildfires blackened portions of
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the golden state, and the fire season is still young. despite the taxing work this man is back for his third season. >> this is my first time being in prison and i'm not -- i'm not whainal. so i wanted to do the best i could to give back to the community. >> reporter: terrell elson has worked the line for two years. he says he wants to square his debt to society. how dangerous is this work? >> it gets really dangerous. it's fire you know? it's fire and you don't know what it might do. >> they are getting rehabilitated, so they are going back out to the community with the skill and they are likely not to commit crimes again. not all of them but more than half. >> reporter: when the crews aren't working a wildfire they work on other projects like fire fuel reduction and tree topping,
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skills that are useful in the outside world. >> well they are human beings you know. and everybody deserves a second chance. >> reporter: for these men, it's a second chance that could possibly save their futures. >> tree falling! >> reporter: sarah hoye al jazeera, california. you can see more of sarah's report tomorrow on "america tonight" at 10:00 eastern time. in florida the problem isn't fire but water, dangerous floods followed heavy rain across the state this weekend, especially outside of tampa where a mandatory evacuation order is in effect. rising rivers and streams forced authorities to close roads. water is now rescreed -- rescreed -- receding. in a speech seen live on al jazeera this afternoon,
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president obama announced a goal of reduction in greenhouse gases. >> no challenge poses a greater threat to our future. >> reporter: an impassioned speech. u.s. president barack obama trying to convince the skeptical that climate change is real while trying to rally the country that they can change it. >> we can solve this but we have to get going. >> reporter: his warning the current drought, floods and long wildfire season it is all going to get worse unless we change. it calls for a reduction of carbon emissions by nearly a third for these power plants. republicans say there will be negative consequences for the economy. >> they threaten to ship good middle class jobs overseas. they are likely to make it harder to maintain reliable
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sources of energy to meet demand. >> reporter: the white house disputes those claims. >> if we don't do it nobody will. the only reason that china is now looking at getting serious about its emissions is because they saw that we were going to do it too. when the world -- when the world faces its toughest challenges america leads the way forward. >> but experts say it could take years before the new rules are implemented, if at all. >> there are those who believe on supreme court is upcoming here. >> reporter: most cases take four to five years to reach the supreme court. >> thank you, everybody, god bless you. >> reporter: meaning that if the president sees this as a key part of his
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long out of office. now to syria where the pentagon says it started to provide air cover to a small group trained and equipped to fight isil. jamie mcintyre is at the pentagon. jamie. >> reporter: the u.s. said all along once the forces it trained to take on isil were in harm's way it would have a moral obligation to come to their aid. but it stopped short of saying what that aid would be until friday when the u.s. authorized air strikes. smoke rises over the northern syrian city the result of multiple u.s. drone strikes friday that helped repel an attack on a group of syrian opposition fighters which included just over 50 members of what has been dubbed the new syrian force. the pentagon says the u.s.-trained fighters were co-located with other syrian
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rebels known as tuition 30. at least one u.s.-trained fighter was killed and two division 30 commanders were captured by the al-nusra fight. the air strikes made good on a promise to provide defensive fire power if the u.s.-trained forces came under attack on the ground from anyone including forces loyal to bashar al-assad. but a pentagon spokesman down played the idea that the u.s. was now broadly backing rebels fighting the government. >> we're not fighting the assad regime. these people are trained and equipped only to fight isil. >> reporter: that's not the way it is seen by russia who's foreign minister called the policy counterproductive. air strikes can be conducted against any forces pointed out
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lavrov because it's hard to tell who is fighting who. it's theoretically possible that assad forces could come under attack it's unlikely. assad has fewer troops in the north. >> we have cautioned syria in the past not to engage u.s. aircraft and the syrian regime would similarly be advised not to interview with new syrian forces counter isil mission. >> reporter: on capitol hill john mccain said that the air strikes, limited to supporting only the handful of troops directly trained by the u.s. don't go nearly far enough in a statement mccain said: pentagon sources say so far all of the u.s. air strikes conducted in syria have been
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conducted by unmanned aircraft drones and the pentagon announced today that the first armed drones also had started flying out of the air base in southern turkey where in just a few weeks u.s. manned aircraft will also be stationed, but those forces are likely to be focused on hitting sites in isil. jamie as you know air wars said today that more than 450 civilians have been killed since the u.s.-lead coalition began air strikes against isil and it began one year ago. how is the military responding to that report? >> reporter: the u.s. military has a far lower number. they make a couple of points. they say no military in the world goes to the extent the u.s. military does to try to avoid unintended civilian casualties.
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they also say they investigate every credible complaint about possible civilians. they had a half a dozen investigations going on. but they have only confirmed right now two civilian deaths two children in one air strike. they don't have a number that's anywhere near the 450. i have to say that they have a very conservative way of con officialing these deaths and the monitoring group is taking a much more liberal approach so i don't know which number is totally accurate but if there are only two civilians killed in a bombing campaign like this it would be one of the most precise campaigns in military history. today a syrian army jet slammed into a marketplace in idlib province. it was conducting air strikes on rebel forces at that time. at least 27 people were killed dozens others injured. not immediately clear what
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caused the crash. secretary of state john kerry was in qatar today leading with leaders of the gulf cooperation council. his mission, to reassure u.s. allies that the nuclear deal with iran will make the region safer. kerry said tehran will be much easier to deal with if it cannot develop a nuclear weapon. >> we focused exclusively on iran's nuclear program and the potential of iran and a nuclear weapon. and therefore what was resolved in vienna was a nuclear deal. without any understanding or expectation of what would flow from iran with respect to the region. >> after the meeting gulf leaders offered a cautious endorsement of the iran deal. kerry is now on his way to singapore to deliver a speech on
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u.s. treyed and investment. up next inmates say they were forced to fight in jail for the entertainment of the deputies. and controversy carved into a georgia mountain the debate over what a sculpture of confederate heros should be removed.
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senate republicans tried and failed tonight to advance a bill to cut federal funding for
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planned parenthood. the organization has been under fire over a series of secretly recorded videos that they say show planned parenthood officials discussing the sale of fetal material. planned parenthood denies it. >> reporter: repubeos released by an anti abortion group. they made secret recordings of planned parenthood officials. one video shows a doctor meeting with people posing as buyers of fetal tissue which comes from aborted fetuses. the doctor talks in a very casual manner about details and pricing. planned parenthood says the videos were heavily editored. the organization says it doesn't
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make money from the sale of fetal tissue. senators on the republican side of the aisle are expressing outrage, however. >> our collective conscience was shocked by videos depicted planned parenthood executives discussing the harvesting and sale of the materials of unborn babies. >> reporter: democrats say this is not at all true john. they point out that planned parenthood has not been charged with doing anything illegal and in fact a federal judge has banned the release of anymore of these videos. barber boxer of california says this is just an attempt to go after an organization republicans have long been trying to defund. >> the truth is the republicans and their extreme allies have
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been out to get planned parenthood for decades. the only thing that changes is their tactics. >> reporter: boxer says that this debate overusing fetal tissue in medical research is two decades ago, john and peopled to be fairly resolved with republicans voting to allow it. and boxer points out that that tissue has been used to develop vaccines including chickenpox and polio, john. >> republicans knew they didn't have enough to move this bill forward, so they clearly wanted to make pint right? >> absolutely. and this is a test for what we expect to see in the fall when congress comes back. hard liners are saying they are willing to defund the government over this issue. but the republican presidential candidates have their first debate later on this week on thursday night, this issue may
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certainly come up and democrats are always using this issue to get their base impassioned about politics right now john. hillary clinton saying she is going to fight to make sure the funding for planned parenthood continues. john? >> libby, thank you. speaking about one of those republican presidential candidates bobby jindal announced his state is terminating its made kayed contract with planned parenthood. in a statement today the government cited the recently released videos as a factor in his decision. of course he is a republican candidate for the presidential nomination. now to california and accusations of an illicit fight club held inside a san francisco county jail. they accuse sheriff's deputies of forcing them to fight for entertainment. they were threatened with
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violence and sexual assault if they refused. matt gonzalez is the chief attorney with the san francisco public defender's office which brought the alleged incidence to light. matt how did you hear about this? >> well our office was contacted by ricardo garcia's father who had met with him during a family jail visit, which is allowed on the weekends and he learned from his son that the sheriffs were staging these fights. >> so give us some context. first of all, i mean how often do you believe this sort of activity goes on in prisons in california or america, and what can be done to stop it if it's true true? >> well this is the first time we have seen these allegations made in the san francisco county
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jail and of course you know, the jail is not so large that you could hide this activity from other deputies and so it raises the question of what kind of law enforce culture is there in the jail that would allow some deputies to look the other way. >> talk about ricardo garcia. he named four deputies involved in this case he said. what does he say they did? >> well in effect that they wanted to see him fight another inmate and, you know, with threats of violence sexual assault, everything from being tased to beaten up while handcuffed. he was given the option to fight or to suffer that kind of injury to himself. the other inmate that he fought was a gentlemen named stanley harris who weighed about 200
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pounds more than ricardo garcia so it was something of a spectacle. clearly, both men, you know, opened themselves up to being severely injured. >> we understand the san francisco sheriff's office has brought the fbi in the case. why bring in the fbi. >> well on the one hand the sheriff is trying to say that he wants there to be no allegation that he didn't do everything he could to get to the bottom of these claims and i think second of all, i think it -- it gives everybody a heightened sense that there could be outcome that is legitimate. i think when deputies are being interviewed by the -- the federal agents they will understand that if they are not truthful, they themselveses will be opening themselves up to potential law enforcement
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penalties. >> matt it's good to see you. thank you for joining us. disturbing video released by the american civil union, alleging a kentucky officer of illegally handcuffing children. the lawsuit claims the officer also handcuffed a nine year old girl and that both children have disabilities. coming up next on this broadcast. under the gun, u.s. cities see a spike in murders, police chiefs gathered today to find some solutions. plus the biden factor. he is said to be considering a run for president. a look at what that run might look like.
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hi everyone this is al jazeera america. i'm john siegenthaler. crime in america, surging violence in many cities -- >> that's why it's important to
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continue to analyze and reevaluate the multifaceted approaches. >> -- how top police chiefs are coming together to fight it. vice president biden reportedly taking a look at 2016 and a serious threat to hillary clinton. confederate controversy, it's much bigger than the flag. >> people can use it for bad or good. it's just a symbol. >> bitter debate over a rebel monument in georgia. plus nat geo winners, offering a new perspective on our world. ♪ the suspect wanted in the shooting death of a memphis police officer is under arrest. police say he turned himself in this afternoon. the 29 year old is accused of killing officer sean bollton after he interrupted a low-level
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drug deal. police say he was an ex-con on supervised release. he is now facing a first degree murder charge. three major u.s. cities are reeling tonight after a weekend filled with gun violence. in chicago a series of shootings left three people dead, 37 others wounded, a 7-year-old boy and 5-year-old girl were among those hit by gunfire. and in baltimore, gun violence left two dead and nine wounded. john terrett is in washington following this story, john? >> reporter: good evening to you john the chief's association meets fairly regularly. but it has almost reached the level of a national emergency. in their sights today, drugs, guns and repeat of fekders. >> a national summit on
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violence. >> reporter: it's no coincidence the major cities chiefs association is in d.c. discussing the nationwide spike in violence. among the 30 cities that make up the association, homicides are up 20%, half report an increase in gang activity and drug use is climbing. but what is causing all of the violence? >> it is hard to ascribe a single concrete reason for it. that's why it is important to continue to analyze and reevaluate the multifaceted approaches to dealing with crime. >> reporter: the major chiefs highlighted four points they say need to be worked on enhanced penalties for gun crimes they recognize the need for better community relations, prosecute and sentencing reforms, especially for repeat offenders, and testing for new synthetic
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drugs they say are linked to dangerous and erratic behavior. the president says officers need greater support if they are to end the spike in violence but this year seems to go beyond that normally seen in the long hot summer months. >> the police around this country understand what part of crime fighting we own, but we also understand that when you talk about things that entire criminal justice system. it's public health system. it's how we deal with the folks that have mental illness. >> reporter: the summit was held in downtown d.c. just down the road at the white house, the president is said to be watching the strike anxiously in next door maryland. >> the president is concerned about reports about an up tick in violent crime in bald bald -- baltimore, and that's why he has directed his
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department of justice to continue to be very focused on what steps can be taken. >> reporter: the major chiefs addressed another contentious issue of police officers were not being involved. >> if you look at the number of encounters where we take the number of guns out of the hands of dangerous criminals, it doesn't support that. >> all right. john terrett in washington. john thank you. some major retailers that sold rel listic-looking toy guns will pay hundreds of thousands of dollars in fines to the state
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of new york. kristen sal loommy has more. >> reporter: not one of the guns in this arsenal is real but it can be difficult to tell. that's why new york passed laws years ago requiring bright markings. but that hasn't stopped some retailers. >> year after year we have found retailers such as wal-mart amazon, and kmart chose profits over safety and put thousands of new york kids and police officers at the risks of a tragic and even deadly encounter. >> reporter: more than 6,000 cases in the last two years, it was found that retailers like wal-mart sears and amazon were still selling the realistic guns online. in response each has agreed to pay thousands of dollars in fines, and comply with tougher standards limiting toy guns to bright colors.
8:37 pm has revised its policy they said in a statement: the move comes on the heels of the shooting of this 12 year old who was playing with a pellet gun in a park when he was killed by a cleveland police officer last november. in the last 20 years there have been 63 shootings in new york state because of toy guns eight fatal. a half dozen states have laws on the books dealing with toy guns. another seven have introduced legislation to create or amend such laws. the consumer protection agency which oversees these regulations has no say when it comes to the sale of real deadly weapons. gun safety advocates applaud new york's efforts, bah say more needs to be done. >> it's a real public health crisis and the fact that
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congress has chosen not to rel late this evasive and lethal consumer product is a great shame. >> reporter: real guns kill more than 33,000 americans a year. kiston saloomey, al jazeera, new york. now to the race for president. 14 of 17 republicans are taking part in a new hampshire conference. and thursday they square off in the first official debate. joe biden is neither confirming nor denying reports that he is considering a presidential run. the times says biden's son bo urged him to run before he died of brain cancer in may. biden has not ruled out the idea
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of running. he has not formed an exploratory committee either. jeanie is professor of campaign management at nyu. welcome back. >> thank you. >> what does this mean? >> i think that biden -- it's not unusual that the sitting vice president would be a serious contender for the nomination but i think it's a stretch he'll jump into this thing. there are a lot of obstacles in his way. it's not too late but if you look at what it takes to run, the money, the organization the structure, those things will be an uphill battle for somebody like joe biden. >> bad timing for hillary clinton. >> it's bad timing for hillary clinton. certainly her numbers are not going in the right direction, and we see the amount of energy behind somebody like a bernie
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sanders, and if you are joe biden, you could have saying this could be my time to do this. but it's still a small opening, because hillary clinton is beloved on the democratic left and as joe biden, it's -- the issue for the democrats is the -- when they get to the general election is she going to lose the independence? >> what happened in the last six months? i mean all of us -- most of the press in this country was declaring hillary clinton the nominee for the democratic party. and now -- i mean there are real questions. if the vice president is considering a run, he must think she is vulnerable. >> and she is. first of all she announced, and once you announce and this will be the same case if joe biden decides to aflounce you are going to be under scrutiny. and that leads to increased disapproval.
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i think they still have not gotten an answer as to why she put up the private server -- >> the emails. >> the emails. and the benghazi hearing, and people don't trust here but that said tomorrow she releases her two new ads in new hampshire and iaea and those ads are very very moving and they focus a good deal on what she does have to offer, which is the work that she has done in a long professional -- you know life in terms of children and family so she does have things to offer, but she has to remind people of this. >> can i talk to you for a second about the debate. what are we going to expect from this? especially with donald trump in it? >> that's the big question. donald trump has told us he is lowering expectations. he is not going to come out swinging but will counterpunch
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if someone confronts him. i think it depends if people come out swinging i think he is going to counterpunch. if they don't, i think he is going to try to show he is the grown up in the room. >> don't the issues get lost in this circus? in >> absolutely. and it is a circus because how with ten people on the stage could you have a sober, intelligent discussion on any of these issues. take his focus on healthcare. he is in favor of a single payer system. in that is a far more liberal position than anybody on the panel would take. is he going to get to talk about that? absolutely not. they will only have 30 seconds each. >> i know. it will be interesting. >> it will be fun, john. >> it's good to see you. we'll watch it together. thank you very much.
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in georgia confederate flags were flown this weekend at a contentious rally in storm mountain georgia. just the latest clash since the church shootings in charleston south carolina last month. that left nine black perishers dead. >> reporter: it's a granite monument over 800 feet high just outside of atlanta. the huge stone outcropping was the sight of the rebirth of the ku klux klan in the 1950s, when they gathered and ignited a flaming cross to proclaim its revival, ever since then many have seen the mountain as a symbol of racial hate red. the carving which took nearly 50 years to complete depicts, davis, lee, and stone wall
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jackson, all leaders of the confederacy. >> georgia is over 280 years old. it -- and yet, the confederacy was only four yearsover that and so the confederacy, seems to dominate the perception of what is historic case. >> reporter: the naacp wants the monument completely removed. >> for people who claim it's art, there are a lot of artistic expressions, but that art is not worth another black life. ♪ >> reporter: over the weekend, hundreds rallied peacefully in what they call the pro-confederate gathering at the base of the mountain. >> you are not offended by it? >> no people can use it for bad or good it's just a symbol.
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>> reporter: but others like the self proclaimed head of the georgia ku klux klan came with other intennings. are you with the kkk? >> i am. and i'm very proud to standing up for my heritage if these people knew what they were talking about, they would know the kkk was started by six confederate soldiers. it is my heritage. i have forefathers who died for this flag >> reporter: but the kkk means hate. >> no i don't. it is scenes like this that are adding fuel to the debate. >> what they celebrate is treason against the united states of america, and those people who wave that obnoxious flag app app -- apparently are not
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patriots. >> everybody go back. >> reporter: but too many black leaders the etching is a symbol of white sup recommendsy. >> even though the current memorial doesn't represent me from a cultural perspective it is historical. the confederacy happened and no one benefits from attempting to erase part of our history. >> reporter: his proposal of adding other historical figures should take decades to come to fruition. the stock exchange in greece roped today for the first time in more than month. the benchmark index in athens dropped 24%. greece suspended trading at the engineer of june after falling
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into default on its debt. it is proposing a new bailout plan with strict austerity measures and tax hikes. in puerto rico they came up with a 630,000 interest payment today. a tiny fraction of the $58 million that was due. >> reporter: if you have been following the news from here this default is no surprise especially when you think that the governor at the end of june talked about a financial death spiral. he said they simply don't have the money to pay their debts. they owe something like $72 billion. so that was just a drop in the ocean. this island has never been in default before but this will really effect the people of puerto rico. has this crisis continues many of those who work for the government will face rising
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costs, rising standardsover -- standards of living but they also good lose their jobs. the government is scrambling to reorganize this debt if you would like. the future of this island is in the hands of just a few people. remember there is an exodus from puerto rico, 50,000 people a year are leaving to the u.s. so that really compounds the problem here. the issue is they owe $72 billion, they don't have the money. they will have to restructure, but for years to come this island will be in severe financial crisis. justin is the national porta rican chamber of commerce. he is in d.c. tonight.
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what does missing this payment mean for the people of puerto rico justin? >> it means they are definitely going to see the series of austerity measures that they hoped would not come to fruition. the fear has been if they missed a payment, if cash runs out there will be cuts to everybody on the island. >> are people beginning to feel that already? >> certainly. the economy has been terrible for years. it has been terrible for at least a decade. they have been in recession for over a decade. employment is horrible. employment rate -- at least the full employment rate is over 20%. only 40% of the labor force actually participates in the labor force, 40% of those eligible for the labor force. it's an impoverished state. they are not doing well already. so this is just going to be
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another -- another hit. >> so as you know some people call the decision today to default the nuclear option. why did puerto rico do it? >> it's a chess match, really. there's two sides there's -- on puerto rico's side they have their administrators and they are hoping to beat their of meant tos who are hedge fund operators, debt owners and also washington, d.c. they are hoping to make a move that somehow compels washington, d.c. legislators or administrators to do something -- >> to do what? >> they are hoping for maybe a chapter 9 restructure, which is currently unavailable to them for whatever reason congress decided that many many years ago. possibly to get a waiver on what is called the jones act, which forces all goods to go through
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the mainland before they go to puerto rico. it increases costs for everything on the island. they would like to see change. >> if the those changes were made, would that have improvement on the economy in puerto rico soon? >> no. >> yeah. >> in the long term. >> it is going to take years. >> absolutely. it is going to take years. and really what they are looking for, they want something -- they want a low-interest loan to cover them for the next couple of years, so they can basically get things going again. but they have had decades to get their stuff in order, so why would anyone trust them now? that's why washington and other investors are saying we're not sure we should do anything to help you? because we're not sure you will change your game. >> who do you blame for this?
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>> the administrators in puerto rico. they have been a colony of spain and a colony of u.s. and all of their laws have been deck indicated by the u.s. up until about the 1950s, they is semiaon the mouse now. but the u.s. could allow them to do a lot of economic reconstruction. all fiscal policy. unfortunately there are some things that are not available to them. but they have had the ability to cut spending to invest in domestic economic growth instead of providing incentives to foreign investment growth and they have had a lot of opportunities, but it hasn't happened. >> justin thanks for joining us tonight. we turn now towards communist cuba which changes
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are causing some difficulties. >> cubans on state salaries make about $20 a month, and they are mostly stuck with what they can get in low-priced state-owned markets that often run out of food. but reforms have allowed farmers to sell their goods in private markets, but not many cubans can afford to shop there. the cubans who are their customers belong to a new business class, mainly made up of restaurant and store owners. in our next hour we'll take a look at the successes and failures of this private market and the difficulties that bureaucracy is having keeping up. >> coming up the photos that
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national geographic has picked as the best this year.
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now to "national geographic"s traveler photo contest. the images are breathtaking, and the stories behind them almost as stunning. the winning pictures from the "national geographic" traveler photo contest take you on a journey from oman and a burst of sand to romania. the pictures range from emotional, gravel workers peaking through window glass in bangladesh to light-hearted boys from thailand standing in a stream trying to catch a duck. here stars from two dwarf galaxies sparkle.
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nearly 18,000 pictures were submitted, but it's images like these that caught the eye of the judges. some of the stories behind them are just as compelling as the snapshots themselves. this photographer says he tried all day white rhino, but he didn't get the shot until the next morning when he woke up to find three of them grazing in front of him. in india this photographer caught the aftermath of a wrestling match. they fight in a mud pit and after words rest together in a demonstration of mutual respect. the judges say they are looking for photos to take them somewhere they have never been before. like rural poland where hay makers still use a pitch fork. just one photo can win the grand
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prize, and this was it. the photographer went diving with a humpback while and her new-born calf. she said the image wasn't planned, but she could feel the power behind it. that's our broadcast. thank you for watching. i'm john siegenthaler. the news continues next.
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gulf goal? >> the partnership that we share is indispensable for the security of this region. secretary of state john kerry tries to convince some of iron's skeptical neighbors to support the nuclear deal. trapped in