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tv   Book TV  CSPAN  November 5, 2011 11:00pm-12:00am EDT

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but when the tribune bought it, mark willis didn't know that the tribune was buying the company. they bought it when he wasn't even looking. it was just kind of a nice little back-stabbing drama that played out in a place where they literally made drama, in los angeles. and i think because they were trying to really do the deal in secret, a lot of things that we should have known about that we didn't know about came back to haunt us later, and the company got in this -- the things that we didn't know about like a huge tax case, circulation problems at newsday and the circulation fraud, all of these sort of things came back to haunt us and really became, put us into a troubled condition which made us vulnerable to mr. zell. ..
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>> when everything seemed possible are over we have entered a time of uncertainty when our in niche of the arab revolution is framed not only by the images of jubilant protesters but by sectarian
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this in mob violence and church burnings, a humanitarian intervention of the struggle for hegemony for iran, turkey, united states, israel, much more complicated picture so the revolutionary wave has only begun. i am reminded of a wonderful scene in the battle of algiers that many of you have seen where a revolutionary talks about the revolution to a recruit but says that the sec the hard part is the day after. the middle east and north
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west africa is in flux so it is difficult to say anything of certainty but there is one thing that can be said that it took everybody by surprise it is true of almost inevitable stir together political repression, stagnation, and a deep sense of humiliation have a potent revolutionary cocktail. but the fact is nobody saw this coming. why is that? that is worth pondering. and the west much literature told us the people in the region were not ready for democracy or simply did not want it. the american press said the same thing. the arabs don't like their regimes and they're too tired to confront them and
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political freedom in the world and how many times mirror reed told by the pundits that the opposite of tyranny in arabic is not freedom, it is it justice. as a result there is not a great deal of pressure for reform in the region those who make the argument actually believe this and they partly did in a stagnant political system governments had shown remarkable ingenuity to buy the content through patronage and when that did not work there was a torture cell and patrons rarely complained the american said that british called on their friends for help. the american am british agents for yemen and egypt
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and libya up. but skepticism was coupled with anxiety about what might happen if reform did occur. not to the people in the region but if the country's democratized we would be in trouble and the arabs might get eight ideas about oil or israel. this is why this so called bush freedom agenda collapsed very quickly after the success of the muslim of brotherhood election in egypt and the 2006 victory of hamas that were free elections in palestine. right now we have elliott abrams trying to claim credit from the arab spring but it was happening in spite of the americans not matter because of it and
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they know that but i want to suggest that they knew it was coming because they didn't i was there before the revolution to talk to the promised leader of the muslim brotherhood in ast y e egyptians had not resulted in greater numbers against the regime they despised and the response was do not expect us to revolt that could have been said by anybody that cliche has gone up in smoke along with so many others and another cliche that the arabs don't care about palestine it is a distraction by which deletes manipulate public opinion and it is a real concern now that the facebook revolution imposed islamist and counter
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jihad it tells us much more about those that make them which is extraordinarily complex the image that comes to mind est. prison cell with 1,000 prisoners fedora suddenly 0p. what happens? they go in different directions that is what we see now. they are complex and fluid affairs and it is time to appraise them end cut through those cliches we have those our first speaker is hisham matar a novelist born in new york raised mostly in cairo his father
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is a libyan dissident deducted from the family's home in 1990 with the assistance of the mubarak police and has been missing ever since. he is the author of two novels in the country of men india's traneight a visiting professor and we will begin with hisham matar. >> good morning. thing due to everybody here for being here and also to the brooklyn festival for hosting this event. the arab spring which and arabic we referred to the arabic awakening which is far less a seasonal. [laughter] we speak not every time but a lot of times we speak as if we expect history to
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respond at the same pace as it did with the uprisings that moves at the glacial based -- pace such as the air of spring as when it moves very fast and dramatic and we expect that to continue and first of all, before asking what will happen but ask ourselves or question the assumptions what has actually taken place? i think one of the things that has taken place is not what people focus on which is the overthrow of incredibly violent longstanding dictators which is a an incredible event but
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what is more fundamental or dramatic it is that the people for the first time in their living memory collectively stop to ask themselves fundamental questions of what it means to be a people and a society and for a moment glance a different possibility and even now this is the title of uncertainty but for me it is welcome because it is a sign of maturity to not know what will happen next and project yearly because we have always known what will happen next to know what is expected of us and the libyan example i have always known what the dictatorship wants me to think and tuesday and of food it once we see our books it wants me to read and how i am likely
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to be eighth. and none of us know and it is incredibly exciting. [laughter] and appropriate as it is what will happen next it is also deeply program to celebrate the moment be another opportunity represents is a opportunity and to maturity the sense of not knowing and being okay with not knowing is you feel yourself to be in charge the cut is the record that was being regurgitated here that they are not as hungry as for democracy but culturally
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, it contradicts the democratic thought in the world. had fear and savage actions. the cia here has set libyans to libya to be tortured and to be interrogated and recently i am sure you read the file that human-rights for gen it is in fascinating detail and send a boxes to the cia men in washington and making them for delivering the people that were against gaddafi
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under the claim they were terrorists and this type of cooperation, and it is an invitation for all of us where those of women and culture to draw a line as our government's and security forces are not behaving-- are behaving in the barbaric way but the conversation here tends to be focused more on an anxiety of what will happen next and does of bogyman take control. what if you have another one who is not our friend? to move from this to a six -- sincere and honest self critique and questioning between britain and italy and france in it
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is in -- incredibly more difficult it makes it far more difficult because of the close alliance with the gadaffi dictatorship not the things that are seen the real actions and really it baffles me why there are nine people demonstrating in front of cia headquarters asking for actions that we know for certain has happened. those same and then and women of the cia who send people in chains to be tortured are probably mowing their lawns this morning. that is a reality and does not make me feel optimistic about the future.
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[applause] >> deron next speaker is lucette lagnado born to egyptian parents day america can journalist reporting for the "wall street journal" and author of a memoir about hurt childhood. she has just published a second and memoir about her mother's use in cairo and your own up bringing in new york. >> i hope everybody can hear me? is lovely to be here with you.
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i would like to start with last february the day mubarak fell everybody around me why this cheering and feeling very excellent cent and i got any mail from my mother-in-law and white plains and she wrote to me say isn't this wonderful? aren't you overjoyed? i remember thinking very candidly, actually, no. i had not in my stomach since january. i had it since the revolution in specific we broke the egyptians embracing the military as there's a years. let's be really cold and worried and unfortunately that queasy feeling has remained and it intensifies whenever there is a disturbing report out of
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cairo a takeover by a the islamist intended to be a unit the march to serve some scary story about dave persecution of christians and overall of course, again last week the assault on the israeli embassy in cairo that violated all norms of lot and i thought civility overall and most disturbing, the beginning promise of the revolution and that i embraced wholeheartedly that the idea that egypt had been stuck in a terrible economic morass always the anecdote of the average person making $2 per day. remember that? we heard that again and again.
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i don't know about you but i have seen nothing about the man who makes $2 per day. i found myself reason they thinking about what my own parents, my father was egyptian when he was one years old and my mother was born there as well. i did not live through either revolution but to me they have been very personal. my dad was through the first revolution overthrowing the of monarchy bringing in the military dictatorship that has maintained a stranglehold over 60 years. he taught me to castaic cool by our revolutions and what they may promise. i have been wary and
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wondering frankly very worried when have been after 1952, they said egypt was only four egypt's yes but then that meant a community of 80,000 jews could not be there anymore and today there are officially 100 jews left in egypt but i believe it is a much smaller number most the elderly widows. it has been or some and a sad because in recent years, after 40 years i did return to egypt and i experience, forgive me my own area of spring, it was the on dissent experience i fell in love with it the way my parents were always in love with egypt and missed the goodness of the people
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and they really didn't experience america. my book was published in arabic which was a tremendous honor for me and the egyptian answer reach out coming to read faye lovely bookstore i would constantly get the emails and notes on facebook and i remember one woman told me, lucette lagnado, you are every bit as the egyptian as i am. i feel in the last several months i have felt that window is closing. i have worried that egypt has become more intolerant rather they and less. i have wondered if i could go back again after a period that i thought all was
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possible and i thought i could read into an apartment to go back. where are we today? in a place where i wish people would talk about nation-building instead of tearing down in a busy. i wish they would talk about the man who makes and $2 a day instead of the strange hostility but i guess there is still possibilities and we will try to be helpful. [applause] >> >> the next speaker is yasmine el rashidi writer based from cairo who to our great fortune happens to be passing through new york this week's oleaster to be a part of the panel. a former middle east correspondent for "the wall street journal", publishing remarkable dispatches from
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the egyptian revolution for the new york review of books and hurt the book has just been published oslo contributor about culture and politics in the middle east which i recommend you check out if you're not familiar already. >> thank you. i feel that i should pick up where lucette lagnado left off giving that i'm living in cairo and i arrived from there a few days ago. it is true part of what they say there is both good joy and the fear that we have these 18 days we've probably could never relive i feel on some level those memories
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which were exhilarating, for most egyptians to experience the revolution, the most uplifting experience of our lives fargo the day that the box step down from a pure euphoria. i don't think i ever knew what that feeling was until that moment. we all had really high expectations and in 18 days we accomplished what we never would have imagined could have happened. and we have had a this sense of possibility that i don't think we had before to experience who inouye we have never experienced it before and it has been a struggle. the past few months has been rough.
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moments of violence, moments of you feeling this is civil disorder. there has been incidence that we all feel our unfortunate from the the violence around the israeli embassy which i was there when it have been to. i would say 90% of the population even if they have grievances against israel were not happy with what happened and they were extremely upset. they felt this is not the message we want to convey, not the egypt we want to live in. again, there has been attacks on churches and for the most part, people are against those things. but i think what we are seeing is a country, population for the first time, they have
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connected with their voices and now to voice their opinions and it is them discovering themselves and everyone is trying to say what they think and feel and that is the sense of chaos is coming and i think it will take time to organize. people are trying and there are different political groups being formed and the coalition and initiative but we're not at at the point* to organize in a manner that allows us to move forward quickly and efficiently but i think it is expected the
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yet we have higher expectations any be are beginning to face the reality. to rebuild our country. it is nitc a population of 82 million with the deeply entrenched system put in place by a former regime and to start again. it will take years. it will not be a smooth process. >> as a great observer of middle east politics at -- cup. [applause] freedom is a messy thing. from donald rumsfeld. we need to contextualized the attack on the embassy to
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remember it was condemned by every single political group and political party inside egypt including the muslim brotherhood. we don't know what happened or how that got out of control. and the anger over the old regime relationship with israel is a potent factor in egyptian politics. it has to be understood. our next speaker is sinan antoon born in baghdad at new york university and the author of a novel also make collection of poetry and a translator. he is also a member of the
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editorial board would you want to get bad grasp of middle east politics, i highly encourage you to look at it. >> i am going to have to say a few things about the embassy as well. the protesters also attacked the saudi embassy but that never made it to the news so this is not necessarily about anti-semitism and the context is important to israel killed five soldiers on the israel the egyptian border and that was never dealt with properly. and about embracing the military, people have this romantic view of their national military all over the world unfortunately and that is what i was going to say in egypt they have the romantic notion and and people who are courageous the standing up against the
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army and i have to say because of donald rumsfeld in the last month it has been disheartening for me to see the architect of the so-called war on terror with our civil liberties to being welcomed back into the media as if nothing had been and they did not direct there have vic and where are the angry voices in the west? let's not expect the egyptians to be superior to us and the eurocentric present -- the presenter what it was seen is still operative in to go back to the idea of quite offensive to some and a arabs it was facebook or twitter because this lies in the same
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colonial imperial fashion that a very long history of struggle to honor the memory of tens of thousands of people who died in various struggles against the dictators but it is true nobody expected the revolution but they don't come out of nowhere. egypt or elsewhere, we have a very clear genealogy and history of strikes and massive demonstrations and a growing awareness to speak of technology of the satellite channels and across the arab world to for once bypass the censorship of the dates to see on tv
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debates and the opposition figures on tv before us. also is the influence of the iranians a few years ago and what it is important to go back to the arab spring what most people have been mined is the cold war and the uprising of the soviet republics because that is with all of the uprisings because they would usher in the success of liberal capitalism but they are not behind the arab uprising and we have to really amuse ourselves with the thinking that this governmental and country of the western democracy have anything to do with helping this to happen. until the last minute
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whether tunisia are eject the politicians were behind the dictators and under the last minute so it was en close cooperation everybody knows that which brings us to the counterrevolution which is what is taking place because it was shocking and surprising on pleasant day for many people in as soon as these things started of course, there were meetings and coordination and our main ally that has the backwards medieval civil-rights abuses too not seem to be important as elsewhere so this brings us to bahrain which was criminal. mrs. said genuine peaceful demonstration it was
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brutally crushed and suppressed and the united states for the most part also yemen. 60% of the population own their own guns but i say this because it is amazing it is a peaceful revolution for such a long time and the regime is motorized and i am sorry. the image of the students that is the iconic image of courage and in syria for the last six months, young men and women go out to demonstrate worthies simple
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universal themes that we embrace, or most of us when none of these have become icahn night. budget we are always told where are the intellectuals to, and support where are the american and intellectuals? all nine months. only too sure their support a lot of us need to look at our own positions it still operates and is the end of a
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street struggles and i write about all the time comment to get the signal from the united states and then it as the egyptian regime did to use this course and that uprising was suppressed and conservative under the watchful eye and endure 2003 to add insult to injury, rumsfeld m. brac and others have to go to the of
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mass graves to show the regime but never acknowledging they themselves were accomplice send it and interact with says but with all the problems and complexities after a revolution, as opposed to the previous regime it is also a generational change. and those who are dismissed busy watching video clips of songs and wasting time on facebook but in the meantime for anyone who was not listening to them, they we're doing something else but most of with added time of the images of dictators
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aid and six grade forming demonstrations against the principle of a growing up with the idea that no one can rule any system unopposed. they grew up with the images not cheering for erred dictators but against the dictators and most importantly the revolution is still on going. it is amazing these people against the very powerful international structure and of course, the military consulate is the ally of the united states these are mubaraks men. it is ongoing. people are organizing and they need our support but
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also our understanding and we do not dismiss them to make the same mistakes again [applause] >> what to think the speaker's for a very strong and succinct speeches that gives us time for questions. does anybody have a question? >> could you say the u.s. has justify their support by presenting either the dictators are in charge of our the islamic extremist? >> i think it is about the way in which the specter of
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the islamic takeover has been invoked to discourage democratic reform? >> that was something the mubarak regime had prevented and i don't know what was happening on this side of the state's budget now there is the wikileaks that detail that. it is either this regime or the muslim brotherhood. so that was the narrative being used. >> there is a reality factor here. and yasmine el rashidi was
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there but they're worried about the islamic takeover and the sadness is many young revolutionaries that we fell in love with in the beginning exactly have not present to the challenge instead you have a very e organized force the muslim brotherhood working very methodically so it is not a fantasy possibility butter real possibility and i am not sure egyptians was like it. some blood but those women who don't want to cover their hair may now will come a strict islamic regime but you have to look at what is unfolding day-by-day. >> one concern i may have is talking about the egyptian as we have learned from the revolution, talking about the most populous arab
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country come 85 million people not an exaggeration end to say e egyptian. >> how are we supposed to talk about them? it is egypt. >> are people concerned that if we have fair elections that to a conservative government will come an end to the economically conservative or religiously conservative? of course, it is a sincere worry on some people's part that is natural to have that but if we are to see what are the conditions the best excite the fervor that is
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the dictatorship that has bet fantastic the environment under which no other group could thrive except them. if we are worried about extremism democracy would be the best cure. >> evade take some time in a country like egypt to mobilize to gather their forces perhaps egypt will go through been no question endure barack you have a government that presented itself to western observers while supporting extremist radical creatures while e essentially, laying them as lambert -- brotherhood to operate.
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it occurred under barack. and anders about as well. -- under said got as well. >> but for 35 years crushing and a secular leftist movements three cold war the man who was always celebrated was responsible for most of this to inject some much into politics and religion as well we have to remember everyone was shocked these demonstration was spontaneous not other -- organized by one force did not have religious slogans and symbols all those somebody said jesus christ or married mother of god but the level of voyage
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was fascinating but that it be been in the world there is a completion about a fundamentalist i am afraid that want them takeover but we have to come to terms with the fact that people pray and be the been the guy who do not want to have an islamic state but are the minority but all of that to 88 and cairo there was owned a one fundamentalist we should worry about this country after eight years you have a fundamentalist in the white house who believe he was doing the bidding of god and then you have the tea party once again, the egyptians don't have more lunatics that we have the only difference is that ours
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have suits -- pretty suits. [laughter] [applause] >> >> president obama gets criticized by the right by not having done enough would you consider that he has done more not simply a continuing the bush administration policies in this matter? >> a question about obama performance. >> is there any acknowledgment to us have been reached out? >>
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>> he lost it as if it was theirs to lose but said they feel bum a foreign policy is a compilation of the bush foreign policy but if you go back to what clinton said they held onto the last moment. obama has not done arabs are muslims and station a favors some of you do not like to hear that he has been a major disappointment internationally. i am sorry but after bushy was so horrible a man who was so horrible but the drums are still killing people that does not make a difference clap club. [applause] >> i am inclined to agree
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but i do not on this issue made because one has significantly changed in the middle east is the collective imagination what the horizon hold what the future might hold those are very difficult to change very difficult to author especially on a big scale i am not suggesting that obama did this. not at all. we did this but that speech signaled a certain kind of town it is impossible for me to say that it did not help. but i don't know if i can say it did not help at all. >> i think obama over the
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last few months to give him a mixed parade. it seems to me he supported the fall of mubarak fairly quickly but on the other hand, syria has been an abominable situation for months and months this terrible overpressure been with little said so i kind of give them a mixed grade i think america is then a difficult position. to people in this room really wanted the case of each of the peace treaty to be abrogated to that part of the world to return to the state of war? i would not think so and i certainly don't but we seemed to be possibly headed that way end negative guess my only hope is could we
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bring the discussion and back to nation-building to solve the real problems that i would say no. one is the economy and the level of poverty and egypt that has been so prescient? >> a very good, but it concerns me we speak in extreme the newspapers there will be a war with israel and they do not one day war with israel. much savvier than any of us in on the country -- contrary they will work to prove they can provide opportunities for the people in if you look
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back they have offered more to the egyptians then the government has offered with subsidies and schools they have kiosks end of governors where people can go when they are given a bag of fruits and vegetables every day asking how they win the support but it is important to look at what they are giving the of people. nobody wants war they may what changes to the treaty but they definitely don't want war. >> sonat enter operate stations ran a less deferential fashion we have time for one final question. >> you can argue one thing that did as mr. -- missing
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arguably 8a big reason why they have not regressed as much as they have helped but the absence of a great galvanizing leader. because of the czech republic, i am curious to hear, i do see somebody on the horizon in to fill the vacuum whether egypt or libya or tunisia of? >> that is a great question because early in the revolutions they were celebrated as a leader laissez-faire and the past with those that are authoritarian figures looking at this as a string to reduce the charismatic leadership on the horizon? >> i don't agree that they have not been as successful
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did i hear that correctly? >> i don't see any stalling but an incredible amount of gains weather in egypt rorer libya or to nation but the fact endure this reality of our revolution has been particularly difficult and after people have been fired eight months 29 in extraordinary sacrifices a conversation and remains surprisingly adequate and modest and attentive to details of zero people was speaking about the dangers of revenge and what sort of environment would promote
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and encourage forgiveness and what that means and all of the questions. to me i would not expect the people after eight months of bloody fighting to be engaging in that. wrote there are some examples but the same is we got used to hollywood style revolution. cameras, lights, i think the real revolution in false a lot of quiet and boring discussions that the that no camera crew is interested in filming and will take a very long time. perhaps we need to define ourselves when will we pronounced judgment on the revolution? in my view i suggest 100
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years. we will not be here but that's in the life of the nation is a short time. >> i agreed definitely. i am assuming most people are reading the near times and other mainstream publications and it is such a one-sided view of things but on the ground the reality is very different and discussions have changed the way people engage with one another has changed and the real revolution is what has happened within the egyptians and i speak for myself program went to an english school and born and raised in cairo but i see how i have changed and a gauging with my city and a very different way and with the people on the streets.
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there is a and openness and a desire to learn people are reading and debating more. >> i hate to be the cassandra of the group but in answer to his question and i know that what i have missed is precisely the emergence of somebody from the early days from a meeting january or february that there were so many people we embraced the google guy and instead they all seem to have come i don't know where they went. and instead i wish yasmine el rashidi would address that because she is so close. there's almost day resignation when i talk to people there that to okay, we will have an islamic brotherhood life for
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awhile but we'll get through it and a stronger system will be merged. i don't know. we wanted so much more than bad. i would worry about that. can there really be muslim brotherhood light? i am not sure. >> this login people chanted is the people want and is due to observer of bregenz said this is the year of the arabs but in the old formula you have to look for a leader and perhaps the blessing has been there is no one leader because after 40 or 50 years we have had all kinds of leaders some with charisma and some with nine and we see what happens this is the year of the citizen so this is what is important so perhaps in the short term and now it is not a problem not to have a
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leader. lourdes syria. six months these committees cannot withstand the onslaught without one single leader but a structure called coordinating committees and a number of charismatic people but we don't need to have one leader that makes it easier for the west because we want the one guy to talk to but now we have to talk to the people. [applause] >> they do for coming into this e band. it was a pleasure. and our speakers. [applause] >> as has hinted at to climate change does not look
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like bad weather it also looks like ethnic violence and religious violence and civil war and counterinsurgency o phobic anti-immigrant policing and what i a try to do is tease out in the different situations the causality the climate change i never say it is the sole driving force of violence but a contributing factor. disses it works in conjunction with the pre-existing crisis. the idea came when i was reporting on the airline economy in afghanistan. the farmers there, why were they growing the illegal crop? and the risks with that to have the crops destroyed by the government and party the answer that came again and
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again is poppy is drought resistant and at first i did not know there was a drought in afghanistan but it turns out it is suffering the worst drought in living memory coinciding with the nato project of nation building and poppy's use one-fifth the amount of water that wheat requires. given the drought, a very severe and the worst in living memory is one of the only crops that is economically viable for farmers in afghanistan. so, along with all of the religious reasons to join the taliban or the ethnic resents kumbaya there was an economic motivation as well linked to climate change. there are two positions on poppy nato oppose it and frequentmo


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