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tv   U.S. House of Representatives  CSPAN  April 4, 2011 12:00pm-5:00pm EDT

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able to make changes. host: you are a republican? >> and the u.s. house is about to gamble in. after general speeches, they build gaveled out until 2:00 including a measure that will cut the printing budget by 10% of the defense department. live coverage of the house now on c-span. the speaker pro tempore: the house will be in order. the chair lays before the house a communication from the speaker. the clerk: the speaker's rooms, washington, d.c. april 4, 2011, i hereby appoint the honorable allen west to act
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as speaker pro tempore on this day. signed, john a. boehner, speaker of the house of representatives. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the order of the house of january 5, 2011, the chair would recognize members from lists submitted by the majority and minority leaders for morning hour debate. pursuant to clause 12 section a of rule 1, the chair declares the house in recess -- >> mr. speaker, i rise to address the house for five minutes and revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: the chair will alternate recognition between the parties with each party limited to one hour, each member other than the majority and minority leaders and majority whip limited to five minutes each, but in no event shall debate continue beyond 1:50 p.m. the chair recognizes the
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gentleman from california, mr. sherman, for five minutes. mr. sherman: mr. chairman, i rise to address three aspects of the conflict in libya. the first of these is, i think, the most important. our efforts to bring freedom and democracy to libya should not be the occasion to undermine democracy and the rule of law here in the united states. now, there is considerable constitutional argument about the powers of the president. there are those who say he cannot take any military action without first inaction by congress. but in 1802, president jefferson sent american naval and marine forces in the words of the song, to the shores of tripoli and the founding gentlemen of this country thought that was consistent with presidential power.
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those who think the president has no power to ever engage i think must look at our history as well as the text of our constitution. at the same time, there are those who say the president can do anything without congressional approval. and i think those folks go way too far. the answer is the war powers act. the law of the land. and we need to make sure that it's followed. now, that law not only requires various reports and consultation, it says that if hostilities -- are to continue for more than 60 days, that congress must pass in both houses a resolution authorizing such activity, and that if after 60 days congress has not passed such resolution, then the president has 0 days to withdrawal. this is the law of the land. and yet last week in both private session and in public
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hearings, high ranking members of the state department declared by their vagueness that they might not follow the war powers act. that is why it is critical that we as a nation demand that even those who are sworn to uphold the law follow the law them selves. and -- themselves. and that we in congress add to any spending bill a provision that says no funds shall be spent for the purpose of violating section 5 of the war powers act, which some also refer to as the war powers resolution. second, who pays for all this? the cost is far greater than the $500 million to $600 million being estimated by the defense department. i'm a c.p.a., they are using the marginal cost approach, which is widely discredited, any full costing will show what american people fully
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understand and that is this is costing us billions of dollars every week. now, we have seized $30 billion of libyan assets, assets of gaddafi that were invested here in the united states. those assets should be used first before we use money collected by -- from american taxpayers. libya is -- produces more oil per capita than any nation you can find on a map without a magnifying glass. more oil per capita, per person than any saudi arabia. i realize libya will need to be rebuilt, but its oil revenues will return and provide for that. and we should quietly insist that the ben ghazi council pass a resolution authorizing the united states to use those seized libyan assets to fund our military efforts. but there is something even more that we should insist on from those who are running
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eastern libya. and that is that they use their best efforts, and i realize they are disorganized, to cut off their contact with and even seek to extradite those in their midst who have american blood on their hands. there is, for example, a gentleman who fought us in afghanistan and pakistan who brags that he dispatched soldiers to kill america's finest in iraq, and who is now one of the rebel commanders. we should insist that such individuals be turned over to the united states. and if they can't find them, that they at least disassociate them selves. -- themselves. now, the administration responds by saying that gaddafi has american blood on his hands and i am sure that gaddafi has after pan am 103 more american blood on his hands than do any collection of rebel leaders.
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but is this the standard by which we judge those that we ask our men and women to die for? to put themselves in harm's way for, to kill for? i do not think that it makes sense to say that the rebels should be aided as long as they have less american blood on their hands than does mr. gaddafi. the test of whether these rebels will be allies and friends of america or the opposite is whether they turn over or use their best efforts to turn over al hasidi to the united states. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: thank you. pursuant to clause 12 subparagraph a of rule 1, the chair declares the house in recess until 2:00 p.m. today. >> members are taking a short break now following morning our speeches. legislative work will get under way at 2:00 eastern.
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one bill on the budget would cut the defense spending budget by 10%. boats will be suspended until 6:30 eastern. -- votes will be suspended until 6:30 eastern. we talk about the latest developments on capitol hill on this morning's "washington journal." this is just under 40 minutes. , the senior congressional correspondent for "the christian science monitor." open quotes europe: a gambit," that is the headline today. guest: these are as close as any negotiations i have ever seen in congress. a bad thing for my profession and a good thing for the public.
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host: have they been continuing over the weekend and headed into this week? who is talking? caller: -- guest: right now the appropriations committee is trying to sort out whether or not the figure of $33 billion was accurate. senate democrats said that it was. the vice-president said that it was. john bowler said he was not convinced. we will have to figure out where the cuts come from underneath that number. that is a very difficult question. senate democrats would like to see the cuts go beyond domestic, non-defense discretionary. republicans say that we have to stick to domestic discretionary. host: let's talk about lines in the sand.
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house republicans, there are probably a couple of them there. where do they stand? as part of that, people here $61 billion. can you explain those numbers? guest: it will be eclipsed this week by trillion. the house republicans are releasing their budget for 2012 this week, which claims to save more than $4 trillion. the momentum of that number could sway votes on the other side. to get to your question, $100 billion. when republicans ran to take back the house, $100 billion from what the president wanted to spend.
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halfway into the fiscal year, the first question was -- cut half of what we said we would. cutting $100 billion from what president obama wanted. what we arelk about actually spending. it is really $30 billion. at that point, house conservatives are boosted by an 87 member freshman class. you said $100 billion, we said $60 billion, and we want to see the full cut this year. as each month goes by there have been more cuts, even with these temporary measures, to demonstrate even $2 billion in cuts per week. so, here we are. the house passed $61 billion. the senate passed nothing.
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the compromise appears to be $33 billion. but we do not know. we will see. host: said democrats are saying what? caller: interestingly, they started out from the position of saying that they had already cut $40 billion from what the president said that he wanted to spend. their position has basically been no new cuts. the fact that they are now talking enthusiastically about $31 billion is huge. host: house republicans are saying what? you have to differ between the conservatives in the republican study committee and leadership? what do they say? caller: what a wonderful question right now. speaker boehner was asked directly about that.
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he had said it -- no, he is looking for the deepest cut that he can get. might i add to those considering a primary challenge to the tea party members who are not quite the party enough, they are pushing for a full promise of $61 billion up to $100 billion and more. that is what is important. and more -- it is not just a debate. who would think that it is a rounding error, $30 billion, trivial? let's get this out of the way. let's take what we can and move on to the next issue, the budget for 2012. host: is this a strategic move by house republicans to say paul ryan, we need to be talking
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about trillions so that we can sway the conservative republicans? guest: i wish that i could tell you. i wish i knew that that was the plan for sure. the timing is about right. host: paul ryan and is expected to announce more of the details of his plan tomorrow, tuesday. sunday he was on the news shows talking about it, laying out medicare as the heart of his proposal in what he wants to do with that. going forward this week, is there likely to be a seventh continuing resolution? of a stopgap measure while they negotiate something long term? guest: that would be difficult. even with the last continuing resolution, 64 house republicans
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are saying -- no way. the only reason that it passed then is that you had 185 democrats that supported it. everyone that i spoke to voted for that last continuing resolution, saying -- speaking of the line in the sand, i will not vote for another short-term resolution. which is tough. we are not going to drop a bill on the floor with only three minutes to look at it. they are not going to cook up something and dump it in your lap. they have got to go forward with this by tuesday night. host: because of the 72 hour rule, they have to put something together by tuesday night. it does not give the senate much
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time to act. guest: and that is where delaying is hard wired into the coating of the institution. one member that does not like how things are going has the power to slow things down for a couple of days. host: aides have floated the idea of breaking the 72-hour pledge, but such a move would be risky, given that the rule was offering to the tea party activists, who accused democrats of creating deals behind closed doors. caller: we have got to give more money to the schools and the met -- less money for the wars. now they are saying that teachers cannot have unions. this is really eroding our entire system.
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firefighters, police, teachers, they are being looked at as if they are some kind of sucking off of the system. it is gutted. this country is completely down hill. these are the traditional jobs that have served the middle class, the barrier between the lower class and the elite class. when you take away the middle, it was run by the corporate elites. which is fascism. we need to stop the war in the military industrial complex.
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guest: every time that i talk to democrats about the bottom line in this budget, almost a first issue raised by the people is always education. that we cannot cut brigitte we cannot cut back on that funding. -- that we cannot cut back on that funding. the other thing that has really interested me, if you look at the votes in the house there are more in the first few months of this house on important issues than in decades. the 87-member freshman class that we've tended to characterize as the tea party class or very conservative class. look at their votes. there is a surprising things.
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you mentioned police and fire. 30 of those freshmen voted to increase spending for police. i think 24 voted to increase spending for fire. a number of voted to support the national labor relations board. there is some surprising switch -- is not the modernist. host: maria, a democrat, washington, d.c. caller: they say they want to save medicare and they want to create social security. we all as taxpayers pay to those funds. i feel that the war's is completely -- to use the funds to countries. g.e. does not pay taxes.
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once they got tons of money, -- the middle class is becoming a class like other countries. obama when send and he at least -- this country has no money. i think it is ridiculous. people are not working. you go to other countries. manufacturing -- we're privatizing the waters and the utility and the basic needs for the humans, for everyone. host: we got your point. guest: where does were spending fit into a context that is focused on cuts? especially as we appear to have
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expanded into a third war, in libya. could drag on for some time -- this could drag on for some time. the main support comes from republicans. democrats that opposed the war do not have an interest in embarrassing the president who is about to announce running for a second term. it is not the sharp test eds anti-war movement we have seen in past wars -- is strongly bipartisan at this point. it will be difficult for point that you're making. to drastically cut defense spending, we need that to support the middle class. you're not going to see that argument. in the next two years in the run-up to this election. host: ""the wall street journal
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," a front-page story. there is more details about what this will include. on taxes,, some conservatives expect a temporary tax change that will let u.s. multinationals bring home as at aas $1 trillion greatly reduced tax rate. they expect a fundamental overhaul of the tax system. host: we will go to a republican in boston. caller: i think if you look over this past decade, both
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republican and democrats have placed a tremendous amount of debt on the backs of old people and young people in this country. i think funding for any program, social, will be dramatically decreased not because of republicans or democrats but because of the markets. it is low on its way to collapsing. there is nothing that hurts the middle class more than the collapse of the purchasing power. there is no coincidence that a collapse from purchasing power and that wars are breaking out. look for continued collapse of the purchasing power of the dollar. host: do you have any thoughts? guest: it is a tout -- a subtext everything going on now. what really is coming out this week is a debate you can cut on
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every possible line. it is not about age. the cuts in social security and medicare and medicaid, -- let me rephrase that. republicans would say it is not cuts. is reducing the rates of growth. changes in medicare and medicaid and social security. there will be a share from older people to a younger people. they have a difficult job prospects and are bearing the brunt of this. it is a very big question. it is hard to imagine the scope of change on capitol hill right now. every previous budget cycle has involved talking about investments and growth and arguing about the point i stumbled over. an increase that is left really a cut?
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what we're talking about now is not that issue. there are deep cuts that affect the whole notion of what our government is and does. go back to a new deal debate. we have not had one on this level since the 1960's. but this one is more severe. host: we have a tweet. host: after the end of this week, if there is an agreement over funding for the rest of this fiscal year, what happens next? guest: you would think that when the main event of this event is what happened on friday, when funding for the fiscal year runs out, will the government shut down? will the consequence they predict who will be out of work? this is an easy discussion, what
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to do with fiscal year spending. the hard one is coming up with the budget for 2012, which goes into entitlement spending. traditionally, these third rails of american politics. but that is not even the toughest issue. the toughest issue is what to do when the spending bumps up against the debt limit. is the issue that so many republicans ran on. "i will not raise this debt limit." "this is as high as it will ever be." that is what i ran on. they have every incentive in the world to stick to what they said they would do. that creates a dramatic situation. this is only one of three.
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the second one is harder. host: ohio, an independent caller. caller: i have a comment and a question. i'm trying to fall this going on. host: join the club -- -- guest: join the club. caller: the senate is not agreeing in passing anything. i'm wondering, are they going to be able to get their act together and pass this to move on to the next to its big steps they have to take care of? up.ill hang n host: before you do, as an independent, what does this do for you prove it was rethinking as you look to 2012 and have you may vote over this issue?
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caller: we have a severe problem, especially with this debbt. the only ones who seem serious are the republicans. they are haggling over something that the democratic house senate and white house should have taken care of last year. the push this problem on to the republicans of this year. it seems like everyone just keeps pointing at the republicans. i cannot see where the senate is attempting to get anything done whatsoever. they keep pointing fingers. they peer down what republicans want. they are not saying what they are for cutting. they are not saying what they are willing to cut. host: let me get your reaction to this. this is from "the washington
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post." this is an editorial. you're dealing with environmental protection agency and planned parenthood. they have to a tangential relationship to a deficit- cutting. at a legitimate basis for holding the government hostage. -- not a legitimate basis for holding the government hostage. what do you think? caller: i would like to know what compromises they have made. what are they? host: we will talk to gail about that. guest: they are letting the other side come forward and then the lead. that is how the majority's
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switched in the last two campaign cycles. republicans said no to everything that the democrats said in the last campaign cycle. democrats -- and so i think i just repeated myself. host: vice versa. guest: are things now so serious that the president will take a hit for not taking more leadership on the cut side. senate democrats will take a hit for not engaging republicans on foot -- on friday, they passed an unusual bill still have no affect, a symbolic attempt to make their point. the bill said if the senate does not act on our spending bill for fiscal year 2011 by the sweet, -- by
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this week, our bill will have deemed to have pass. that is foolish on one level. it would require the senate to agree, which was not going to happen. it was away to say, we're doing something and they are not. both sides are watching closely how the public response to this. does the public still think that cutting deficits and debt is important? is a more important than the possibility of losing programs they value profit that is the dialogue that is going on at this point. but the waiting has to end on friday. you either agree or not. the government shuts down or it does not. i think this one will. host: we have another twitter comment.
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chicago, matt, a democrat, your next. -- you are next. caller: it appears we have a race to the bottom. $30 billion cut here and $60 ,illion ko'd here and the house gop do not want to talk about what they want to cut. the only thing i would say as a democrats, i would say that things need to be cut. as your guest said, this is a debate that we're having that we probably have not had in 40, 50 years. i would say to my conservative
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friends, when the government's invests money, spending money, it is not a bad thing. how do you think the highway system came here? how many jobs did the highway system creates? how many -- how much money did the government spend on putting the stuff in place to fit i can go on my pc and find out news from around the world. that did not drop out of the sky. that was a result of investment spending. all spending is not a bad thing. that is the trouble i get when i listen to my friends on the other side. thank you for your show. it has been good. guest: 80 an important point. what is the difference between an investment and waste, fraud, and reduced profit that is what
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it comes down to. republicans are trying to couch their changes as, let's look were there is waste. the government accountability office came out with a report that said there is $100 billion in programs in government that could be halved, most republicans jumped on that and said this is where we could get some cuts. we don't have to cut into critical investments at this point. programs waste, fraud is another's critical investment. take a small example. speaker boehner in a speech last week defended the vouchers for d.c. it is a program that democrats got rid of. it was important to republicans to see education reform as links to choice for parents,
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including funds to go into a parochial school. democrats said, what is the evidence that parochial schools do better than d.c. public schools put it to kids see gains in improvements that are significantly that is a factual debate. what is the evidence of it i think you'll see that on a whole range of issues. it is not enough to say it is waste, fruits -- fraud, and abuse. on the house side, you have committees that are now focused on a piece by piece going through government spending with lawmakers raising questions and bring in witnesses to answer that question. is it critical or is it not? host: we have a tweet from gary . host: does go to john, a
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republican in florida. you're next. caller: i agree with what the person just tweeted in. republican stock about making cuts. we hear from the left -- republicans talk about making cuts. it is to the point where how they play the race card. we have to put more into education in this country. we rank near the bottom. money is not the issue. look at all schools. they operate most on a shoestring budget. they produce kids that are more than prepared for the upper level education. we need across-the-board cuts, probably 20% and a flat tax. host: is that part of the discussion?
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guest: absolutely. republicans were trying to figure out what the plan was. of the votes said let's cut $61 billion. but what to cut another $22 billion in across-the-board cuts. some did not support that. they did not like an across-the- board concept. they thought it was mindless. are some things more important than others. you cannot just do it with a meat cleaver. have to do it with a scalpel. host: we have another tweet from maverick. guest: a computer service. that is a very big issue. i remember in the 9/11 commission, one of the discoveries was the fbi did not have search capacities on their
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computers. they have been working at this for years to improve this. computers -- that is not like high point of the government in its current form. i think you should send that letter to your member of congress and urged all of your friends to do the same. there is a great savings if the government can figure out computer technologies. host: president obama sent out an e-mail announcing he is running for reelection. at do you think any impact that would have on this week's budget -- what do you think impact that would have on this week's budget discussion? guest: and think the president is missing on action, that he did not embrace the need to make budget cuts. his budget does not go far enough and includes trillions. is focused on the campaign
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suggest he will not be there at all. for democrats, the idea that their best spokesman will be using the bully pulpit to make a case for government. why we need it, what is a critical investment? that can help the kind of case they are trying to make back here. host: sandra, an independent caller. caller: what happened to $30 million that was set aside for the orphan program that they never used but they still love -- $30 million. -- $13 million. i would like to also know -- michele bachmann has a loophole in the tax were surely pays $100
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a month for property -- where she only pays $100 a month for property. what ever happened to the tax break for all the rich when their houses get washed away and everything else. we continually repeat to use that funding, to give it to them, and yet, we're hurting ourselves. i watched john stossel and he was talking about that. we need to find out why. guest: i do not know the specifics of the first case you mentioned. what was the expenditure? host: she is not with us. guest: any detail like that, getting this kind of tax break, it is not fair. let's fast-forward to a campaign ad for 2012. -- i did not catch what you said the first time. host: we will move onto a
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democrat in buffalo. we are with gail russell chaddock with the "christian science monitor." caller: i appreciate everything i get from watching c-span. if we follow the present cost planned for the budget, and his executive plant -- if we follow the president's plan for the budget, and just give it a chance, so the crisis that may be lower-class people or people who are citizens and taxpayers and who would love to have an opportunity to be involved and to help create, but there stifled because of all kinds of other conditions around them that to not allow them to get there. and limited in my educational background.
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i am a living citizen and a taxpayer and a voter. guest: that is a nice set of issues. the question you raised about what stifles growth, i think you'll see more specific discussion in congress that in recent memory. what appears to be supporting growth, spending more money, in fact is not. there are certain regulations that are stifling growth. some small-business owners and entrepreneurs are asking the question, you are not hiring and you're not growing, why? what can the government do to change that? there is nothing more respectful than a real congressional debate. one of the criticism that is made of congress is that it has
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not been having robust debates. there were not substantive back- and-forth so the american people can have an idea about what he's ideas do and why they're important. i think that would benefit both sides. this would be good for the president -- >> budget. there are alternatives. host: a couple more phone calls. only, md. -- olney, maryland. caller: i am an american citizen. everybody calls in and talks about the democratic views. if they are republican or a middle of the road to independence, they talk about conservative or liberal views. we need to talk about american
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views. we have increased the size by over 21 2 million people. what to these people do -- but over 200 million people. host: let's take the point, the size of the federal government. guest: one of the interesting things is how many independent contractors there are. doingf the research we're is what happened to the government -- if the government jets down? for many -- if the government shuts down. it kind of already has. people are uncertain about what spending levels will be. contracts have been held up, in some cases, for six months. so what is the government prove it is the net worth -- remember when the government went lean and mean in previous
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administrations to the patent contract out the work, so that the government is not just those people. it is also the contractors who are picking up the -- they are not creating jobs in the uncertain climate. host: you were talking about the 87 republican freshmen and what we might not know about them. you're writing a piece that is coming up next week in the "christian science monitor." guest: i was trying to give insights. i campaigned with some of them to see how the world had changed. this is not a monolith, this class. they have very diverse views, even in terms of how they would cut and span. members voted to increase spending for police and four
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firemen, who preserved funny in the department of education, department of energy, rather, for green programs. any time you hear something that begins the freshmen are, or even the tea party is, even the tea party is not a monolith. "war and peace."you had the leading freshman at loggerheads as to whether not he should sustain a war in libya. that would be senator rubio. get out and really, that would be senator rand paul. host: you can go to "christian science >> mid u.s. house is in recess
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until 2:00 eastern -- the u.s. house is in recess until 2:00 eastern for legislative business. also this week, debate on funding for the federal government as money to keep the government running expires at midnight on friday. if no deal is reached before the week end, there could be a shutdown of government operations. steve live coverage of the house at 2:00 eastern here on c-span. -- c. live coverage of the house at 2:00 eastern here on c-span. >> what troubles me is this kind of sucks oxygen out of some of the issues that are pending before the federal communications commission. we can chew gum and walk at the same time i guess, but this affects so much of what we're doing.
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>> "the communicators" tonight on c-span 2. >> throughout the month of april, we will feature the student camp documentary's. what is the winning videos every morning on c-span and 6:50 a.m. eastern and just before " washington journal." watch them any time on line at a >> jura was talk about covering the israeli/palestinian conflict in the recent uprisings in the middle east region from today's "washington journal." host: we have the co-auor of the new books, "this burning land."
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his wife, jennifer griffin, the co-author of this book, as well. greg, mr. with you. let's start with what is really best palestinian conflict continuetoday. guest: it has been going on for six decades. tenures ago, they were close to an agreement. but they have worked backwards -- 10 years ago, they were close to an agreement. we wanted to emphasize how they dug a deeper hole for themselves. hamas is in control of gaza. relish solomons have expanded from 100,000 to 300,000 today so. a lot of the problems have multiplied and become even larger. that is one thing we wanted to emphasize. it's a deepening of the
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conflict. >> this includes your personal stories. you have live there. you have raised two small children. you there from 1999 to 2007. you said that israel has a thriving economy. but they cannot solve this problem. guest: one reason we wrote this book is we felt that there is a lot of talk in washington if we could just give back to the peace process. we always hear, if we just can go back to the peace process and get the israelis and palestinians talking as they did when you talk been -- itzyak rabin was on the scene. during the time we live there, the psychological landscape between thesraelis and palestinians changed to such a degree. you need to come at the problem
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with a new perspective as to how both sides were changed. >> -- host: what did they not understand about the conflict that you think they should understand, given that you were on the ground? guest: the way these issues have become more difficult. the economies were very much integrated. israelis and palestinians could travel back and forth. every day, palestinians were like commuters. they would come to work in israel and go home at the end of the day. israel is would go to the west bank. there was economic integration to a degree. the kinds of segregation and divisions have become much more permanent and locked in place. these will be hard to reverse. you just cannot go back a decade
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and dust off the old plan. host: when you first arrive, was it that sparked the decline t three? there? guest: the spark that unleashed a lot of built up anger and frustration that the peace process had not gone as the palestinians and israel is had hoped. there was frustration on the palestinian side. we described in the first chapter or the first deaths on the temple mount bacchant september of 2000. it is not that that's part or cause the intifada. but we bring to in this chapter is the back start of what made him go there that day. we have interviews and stories and the back story behind what motivated him to go there that day.
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and then everything that unfolded from that. you have to understand those initial days. greg is fond of saying it just takes a small spark in the middle east. look at what is happening in tunis. man set himself on fire. now you have a revolution in libya. there was a human rights activist who had been arrested in those early days and that is what sparked the protests. all it takes to the middle east is a spark. our point is that you cannot ignore the israeli-palestinian conflict. it may not be a front burner issue right now. you need to understand this conflict. host: you do need to understand what it means to both sides. do you think that is important? guest: absolute. will you have is the holiest destroyedjudea saism
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twice. and now you have one of the most important shrines in islam built on top of that. ariel sharon went up there to walk around. he did not go into the religious shrine. but walking around in flamed muslim passions. jews pray the western wall. that is the most explosive piece of real estate in the entire middle east. guest: you have to understand how layered it is and the proximity and also how small the place is. we tried to paint the picture in the book. we take the leader there on that day when aerial shot walked onto the temple mount. i was there. the next day, friday prayers.
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jews were praying at the western wall. i did not understand that how on top of each other the mosque and worthy jews were praying. there is a beautiful picture. the last picture. it is in the old city. it shows an arab and a jewish worshiper passing each other in the old city. the above cannot see each other. they a covered. it is and amazing fatah. it symbolizes so much. walking down this narrow streets, streets that have been there since jesus walked the same path. there faces are covered and they do not see each other. host: fast for to today. do the palestinians -- fast forward to today. this is the holiest offer the
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palestinians. israel might take it away. guest: absolutely. this is where diplomacy will have to comment. you have to be creative. there were notions that the mosque and the religious compound that had been there for 1300 years would remain in muslim hands. but that t ground below it be in jewish hands. talking about belowground would have one sovereign and above ground would have another sovereign. you're going to have to come up with some very creative solutions. this is the one spot for an israeli leader to relinquish sovereignty of the holiest site .n judea's aism this is a difcult thing for any politician. host: you conducted a lot interviews while you live there.
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you got personal stories down to the specifics of this conflict. ,'m wondering from both of you is the end goal of statehood more important, or is the site? guest: it depends for whom you're talking about. i think what we're hearing now is interesting. in recent days, there has been talked about palestinians going for a vote about palestinian statehood. that will force israel's hand. have shimon peres -- you have the shimon peres coming to the white house tomorrow. israel is concerned ifhe palestinians and go to a vote at the u.n. general assembly, that they will overnight have a state and if certain things are
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not discussed, that is going to put this conflict and take a turn that many israelis are concerned about. president bush was the first american president to declare that two states are two peoples was the goal of u.s. policy and that the palestinians deserve a state. that was a major step forward. we have seen so much movement. sometimes looks like the israelis andalestinians are locked in a tight race. it's been going on for ever. there is a lot going on. you need to predict what we try to do -- this is a very -- we have to introduce you to characters on both sides of the conflict. you can actually crossed the front lines on any given day and report from both sides of the conflict on the same day.
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that is what we wanted to show. through theyes of these characters that we have met, wh a the issues, what drives them to fit what motives them prove it will be the difficult issues ahead? guest: there are many good people on both sides and we profile many of them in the book who want peace. it is reason not to give up hope. tour elements that have a vested interest in keeping the conflict alive. i would point to hamas, who does not want to negotiate. this makes their argument and their cause stronger, that israel should be destroyed. there are groups of settlers in the west bank whwould like -- who believe that time is on their side. the morehese settlements will become fixtures as part of connected to israel, and therefore they have a greater chance of remaining in place.
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host: want to move on to north africa. what impacts of those situations in libya had there? guest: t biggest impact was the change in egypt. the change -- the potential change of the government or the change of the government and the potential change of the relationship between egypt and israel and one thing in need to understand disease how nervous israel is our right now about what is going on around them, because this is a cataclysmic change we're seeing appear we have had the same families in wer in all these arab states. one interesting point is that for the first time in the history of the middle east, you're not hearing israel blamed for all the problems in the arab capitals. they are not turning around and
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the leaders are not able to say all their problems are because of the conflict not being solved. that is an interesting development. the situation in egypt is important for israel. there is the border between gaza and egypt. if the egyptians -- if the new egyptian government does not monitor that border, that is going to destabilize things in a serious way. i would say israelis are holding their breath as to the changes going on around them. they do not know about the regime in syria. would be a huge change with regards to hezbollah -- that would be a huge change. all eyes right now on these other conflicts and it is not clear how the dust will settle.
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st: thiis a headline from times."the new york what role of a plane in the middle east -- what role are they playing in the middle east? guest: it has been extraordinary what qatar has done. al jazeera has played a role in the arab world. they he the the u.s. military presence. they have decided that for many -- they have contributed to an opening of discussion and dialogue in the arab world. it is an important thing. they have also avoided being involved in the unrest that you've seen elsewhere. host: we're talking about co-
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authors of this new book. we're talking about the new bk and also the unrest in the middle east and northern africa. mike is a democrat. are you there? oops. i think we'll have to wait to see who else calls and. see who else calls an caller: you folks are extremely knowledgeable and i appreciate your time. what i like to know and i've been trying to find out, where is -- need the palestinians -- wod ed another hanan. was an excellent representative. we need her.
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guest: she's still very prominent in palestinian society, but less so on the international stage. she was a leading spokesperson in the 1990's. articulate, very persuasive. she was in some palestinian cabinets. have some friction with some of the other lders and not a front-line political figure right now. but involved in developing education programs. she has a nonprofit that she runs. she still very active, but you're not hearing her as the spokesperson. she was a powerful spokesperson. host: -- guest: she felt -- she and falling-out what the arafat regime and many of his cronies
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who took over afterwards. she was not in a good position with them. she would have felt the intifada did not serve the violent side -- it did not serve th larger cause. she is a woman of principle and i think she is funny she's better served working on women's issues in the palestinian area. tom, go ahead. are you with us? you are both back here in washington now. let's talk about what you're doing. guest: i worked for fox news at the pentagon. i was in afghanistan iyou weeks back. that is what we're doing. one thing wdon't have a chance to talk about, the bo talks about our personal life. working for two different news organizations in a tense time
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and also raising two small children. i gave birth to two daughters while we were living in israel. there were certain times when i would go to work with a flak jacket and a breast pump because i was nursing at the time. our girls were born in jerusalem. our second daughter was born on the e of the iraq invasion. i checked into the hospital and they give us a certifite for a gas mask tent the babies. adults are caring around ga masks for fear that saddam hussein would fire chemical weapons. that says so much about the psychology of the conflict. we say it is no exaggeration to say on the day they are born, israelis begin preparing for war. host: you are at npr.
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guest: i worked on the "addition" -- morning edition" program. host: our caller, tom, is back. caller: how is it going this morning? becausof the uprising in africa, why do you think the uprising is so severe now? due to american change and status with the president and everything? give me your notation on by the uprising there in africa and it seems to have been an uprising in the united states. guest: i believe you are referring to the north african countries that have exploded companies, libya, and egypt.
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something that has caught people by surprise. what you see in places that are frozen in time or the have one autocratic leader, there is not an allegory venue to practice any kind of normal politics where there are -- the views are suppressed. you can take one incident and things will explode. we mentioned this earlier with the episode in tunisia. someone was abuse by police and th touched this off. this is percolating under the surface. as we a scene, it happened in half a dozen countries at least. guest: think also it is the advent of social media and the internet. a lot of these countries -- it was popular for these rulers and tyrants to keep their people separated from the outside
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world. you could keep them from knowing what was going on. that is impossible now in the age of the internet. greg mentioned the world with al jazeera in the middle east. qatar funded the station -- the satellite station that essentially was the spark for the revolution a decade ago. americans don' understand the role but al jazeera has played in the middle east. we have heard criticism of al jazeera during the early parts of the iraq invasion. there were seen as being anti- american. there were chandra -- there were challenging all the leaders. that decade of freedom of information and speech and freedom of speech -- and freedom of the press, that was revolutionary. having access to twitter and facebook -- it was when one person said himself on fire, it was people in syria who saw what
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was going on and said, i want to be a part of this. this is the genie that cannot be put back into the bottle. this is the biggest change in the middle east since the end of the ottoman empire at the end of i.rld war r host: let's go to georgia on the democratic line, joan. caller: do you believe thathe people of north africa and the middle east are still optimistic about how the obama administration will handle things put he had a great opportunity at the beginning because he had some -- the last thing goes back to what you have been talking about with israel and the palestinians. the issue of water and water rights and how that plays. thank you. guest: i will answer the first
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questi. if we think back, president obama went to cairo in june of 2009. he had been in office six months or so. he delivered a very big speech about the need for more open democratic arab world. it is not a coincidence. there was a lot ofope that things might change. don't know that anyone thought it would come so dramatically and as fast as we ve seen it. he was seen as inspiration. it is gone tricky. president obama has found you have this often difficult choice between u.s. values and u.s. strategic interests. at times, they can conflict. i think the president's -- people in this part of the middle east and north africa do look to the united states. they are kind of wondering,
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would get full support to democratic opponents but does that mean military support? will we stand bk of the obama administration is still figuring out its policies. people have the same issues. guest: in addition to president obama' speech in cairo, you have to go back to condoleezza rice who gave a symbol speech in cairo, talking about how u.s. policyn the millie's has long favored stability over democracy. she stated that the new doctrine of the bush administration was that they would favor democracy in these countries. there was a point of time where mixed signals were sent to democratic activists in these countries, the arab countries and capitals. the groundwork for what we're seeing as a series of revolutions was laid during the bush administration and fall
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about a speech by present obama. now i think what we're seeing from the white house and state department and pentagon is the that i don't think anyone believes they can ctrol what is going on in the mide east right now. they are trying to remain engaged in a way that the democratic movement emerges from this period of tumult, that the u.s. will be seen as a friendly player who wants to help and not hinder what is going on. more host:, an independent caller from new york. -- mark, an independent caller. caller: much influence to the united states have in these people fighting for their freedom? what do you think that president obama decided to help them and go against allies that had been there for years and years, who have been suppressing the extreme islamists?
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now those leaders are out and you don't know what we'll have. guest: i was there for the first gulfar when the iraqis were pushed out of kuwait. it w overwhelming support for america. america was seen as the one country that could do something there was pro-american graffiti on the walls of the embassy in kuwait. to give you a sense of the steam -- what esteem americans were held at the time. i think you've seen a waning of american influence and mixed signals. u.s.-supported some of these leaders who were unpopular. there was always a sense of a choice between an autocratic leaders like mubarak in egypt or islam as extremists. it has gotten very hard, for the
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u.s. to make clear its position. i will say that i think this administration -- if this hadn't administration -- but this administration had decided to back the bar, he would still be in power. hi think lingering in thetate department and in the white house's-was the lack of intervention that occurred when the iranian people tried to interfere effused back and they were pretty well squashed by the iranian regime. i think you have to look a european interests.
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and it was really the french and the british wanted an ally as they go to go in and do something against gaddafi. there were people let the pentagon advising against this. each country has been a case by case basis. i think what the administration has realized is that this is a jeanie des you cannot put back in the bottle. trying tomply shherd this process as best they can, even though it is likely to be claimed as the regime. host: we are talking to jennifer crittendon, greg myre, husband and wife team. they understand you were just talking to secretary gates. guest: yes, secretary gates has
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a long history and relishes it with libya because he was debbie director of the cia -- deputy director of the cia, in the 1980's. he was definitely trying to caution against regime change in libya because he saw how difficult it was. one of the firm lines he has drawn is no grown troops in an african or middle eastern country. and he also cautioned the of the day on capitol hill that regime change often takes 10 years, as we have seen in iraq. host: we will go to andrew in florida. caller: i just want to make a quick comment about educational causes and university in the states.
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with the news media, how is it possible to be a more current events? when you came back to the states and went to a friend -- went to friends and family and tried to describe the situation, tholder generations -- was in the older generations or the denv generations that could not complete? guest: i actually think that this book, which really give you an updated lookt the israeli conflict would be great
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in conference. -- in classrooms. [laughter] there are many people who have followed this conflict for a long time and answers a lot of key questions. my experience,fter going to the pentagon and i have spoken to a lot of mility personnel, i am amazed at how much americans know about the world economic -- the world that we've be -- the world thawe live in as a result of iraq and afghanistan. we have had in nearly 1.5 million people who have served in the last decade and they come back with a lawrence of arabia attitude toward the middle east.
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guest: i will make one little counterpoint there. there are fewer american journalist based in the released today than there were on 9/11. that has to do with the economics of newspapers and television, but it is still a interesting fact -- an interesting fact based on the drug involvement of the last decade. host: can you speak to the cost of having you in israel and palestine? guest: you have an ofce there and you need people to support you there. you needed translators and an armored car. host: secuty? guest: not really, we need an armored car and five decades. guest: in iraq and afghanistan you paper mobley $1,000 per day
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for security surrounding them. guest: where we were people did not necessarily always want our opinions, but in iraq and afghanistan, they targeted you. hone., let's go to the a call from maryland. caller: i read j-post and here ts each morning. am surprised at how diverse the views are held even by his release. they seem to have a broader and
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more diverse discussion that we often have here. i wonder if you have gotten into your broken in to both sides of the discussion even happening in israel. guest: we absolutely do. the point you made it is a verbatim what we have said many times. the paper you mentioned is a very liberal newspaper and a very good one. jay post is on the conservative side in israel, but they both have very good articles, discussions, and opinion pieces. it did strike aus that the daily discussion in israel is often lacking here in the u.s..
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you are looking at the right sources and getting a range of opinions. had see thosewe hav kind of debate secure the u.s. guest: the characters that we introduce you to are part of that society that are not going along with the flow. there is one person who goes around the west bank and monitors the settlements and the expansion of settlements. on the palestinian side, we have with the military units, the paramilitary units
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during the intifada. there was a point at which he felt that the intifada had failed. these arevents that are documented in the characters that we introduce you to in the book host: today in the open court wall street journal" -- guest: what we see in lebanon, which is always a complicated and confusing story, affectively, a hezbollah is in control of the government there. they have had elections. the prime minister is aligned with hezbollah there. i was surprised to see this headline commission are now as
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opposed to a couple of months ago when his blood got in control of the government. the u.s. -- when hezbollah got in control of the governme. the u.s. is a little concerned about where it could go if we send arms to hezbollah. witnessed two wars, one in 1996 and another in 2006, where a of hezbollah and israel were fighting across that border. guest: back in 2006, and we have a chapter in the book about this, about the war between israel and hezbollah, we spent 34 days on the border documenting the katisha katyusha -- the katish
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fighters. we wanted to beef up the strength of theebanese government. what you are seeing is they are finally catching of to the political changes that are happening on the ground. host: a man wearing an explosive bolts was arrested as he tried to enter the offices of the largest opposition group. how does that factor into the whole situation in the mideast? guest: and jordan is like all of now of the country's right n surrounding israel. normally, you have the king of jordan and a monarchy there.
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in the countries that are facing protests, the monarchies and seemed to be doing a and better than other families that have held onto power in a tyrannical way. they have managed to hold things together. there have been protests, but things have been mild compared to some of the other capitals. the problem with rdan is that there is a town in jordan that is very radical. your murder -- you remember how zarqawi, who was one of the leaders the we-he was a leader for alaeda. there are tensions between
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protestors, a radical islamists , and those trying to power, such as the king. host: let's go back to phone calls. caller: as long as the leaders are planning a hard ball, there is no peace. people go on and on forever. my other point, i am very concerned -- and the world, not just the u.s. should be concerned.
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they have brought 150,000 army mercenaries. he said he will release them to europe as soon as he is done with them. he is paying them $300 for each person they killed. guest: we have certainly heard a lot about these mercenaries to be annoyed. it is not clear surely how extensive their role is. guest: i have to jump in there. host: go ahead. guest: in terms of the mercenaries, they're the ones protecting him and it is the reason he is holding on to the capitol right now i have heard reports about him and i do not think we know what will happen
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if the fighting ends in libya. but i can tell you about an interesting town in eastern libya that is well documented, a radical town that should be watched carefully. that is where we are covering the surge in iraq. confound all of the paperwork of the icide bombers that were designating themselves in iraq. they found the 19% of them came from one village, one town in libya. the u.s. military did not know why. my colleague from "newsweek" went to darna a few years ago and he documented the very anti-
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american an atmosphere and how they were recruiting in this town. these are things that have to be wise -- how to be watched. if libya turns into basically a failed regime, that is a very dangerous situation. host: since you just got back from africa, what you tcomment on this headline -- and guest: this is an incredibly, incendiary situation. you have this pastor in florida who has taken it upon himself to burn the grant. it is a very incendiary thing to do. it has left to -- led to the death of several civilians
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killed by a raging mob two days ago. it is a very hard situation and it is hard to understand how this pastor in florida can justify burning the karan when we have more than 100,000 troops in afghanistan and iraq. >> the house returns from a short recess at 2:00 and they're expected to take up a bill that would affect -- that would cut the defense department's printing budget by 10%. also a repeal of the net neutrality rules and a bill that would strip the epa's regulation of greenhouse gas emissions. all eyes will be on how the battle of the budget is shaping up as short-term funding to keep
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the government of writing -- operating ends this credit possibly leading to a government shutdown. the house returns and about half an hour at 2:00 eastern today with like -- live coverage here on c-span. tonight, fcc commissioner michael koss. >> this kind of sucks the oxygen out of so many issues that are pending before the federal communications commission. we can chew gum and walk at the same time but this affects so much of what we are doing. >> that is tonight on c-span 2. once again, the house is back at 2:00 until then, new poll of young people and their thoughts about the president, congress, the economy, and education. span. "washington journal" continues.
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host: john della volpe is here to talk about a new poll out conducted recently. before we start talking about these results, let me let our viewers know -- we are going to changeup our fall mind a little bit this morning so we can hear from these millennial. if your age 18 to 29, you have your own line. president obama's jo approval rating with these 18 to 29 year- old groups, 55% approved, 43% disapprove. college student, 60 percent approve, 38% disapprove. guest: it is incredibly important that we begin to look at how the money will generation
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is fair and in 2012. in 2008, if not for young people, i daresay that hillary clinton and not barack obama would be president right down. from the first days of the iowa caucus all the way through the general election, young people supporte obama by a minimum of two to one. in some cases 5 to 1. to the extent that they are a swing vote, that gives hope to several other republican candidates. host: compare those numbers, though. , 60% of themve
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approve of obama right now. compare those numbers. guest: this is the first time in four polls that we have conducted that the numbers have increased and decreased over the last four months of relative to president obama's standing. in november 2009, his approval was at 60%. in three subsequent surveys id has been on a decline. we have seen nine percentage points fall on college campuses. this generation is beginning to pay attention to politics again and it is open to president obama's reelection messages. but also, it is open to what the republican candidates have to say as well. host: fast-forward to 2012. what of the resounding issues of
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the campaign is war. how you think the labels will react? guest: that is difficult based on what this situation is like in libya, afghanistan, etc. 54% said the economy is the number one issue facing them at this point. the economy, at this point, approval ratings, people are far less likely to give positive reviews -- young people are far less likely to give positive reviews that older americans. they are binning to approve of him personally and beginning a to have a bit more confidence, but i think they are more
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circumspect of his handling of the election. host: when you look at social media verses on the ground activists, door-to-door types of campaigning, where media tools, which includes facebook, twitter, youtube, blogs, etcetera. they are more likely to believe that online after his seat -- efficacy is more effective than traditional. host: what does this mean on the republican side and how they tried to get that -- get some of the votes for the 18 to 29-year- old age bracket.
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guest: i do not think you get votes based on twitt or facebook. you need to motivate people. you are able to go -- mobilize them through the use of social media. this is the 19th survey that we have released. before a one -- that it started well before anyone heard of facebook. we need to communicate with baliles because of the efforts and vehicles known as social from work or social media. host: what is the methodology behind your polling? guest: the methodology has evolved. we collect over 3000 interviews
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with 18 to 29-year-old. the actual interviews are conducted on line over the internet in in both english as well as spanish. host: let's go to joseph in brooklyn. caller: that is exactly what i was calling about. it seems, after so many years because their vote or three -- there were three major channels end if the president spoke, ribordy watched it and talked about it. and for a long time anything like that was the most boring thing socially. no one paid attention to it for years. the massive corruption has gone
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number of people like me to pay attention to it on the internet and difference new site. -- news sites. i think where you said is close to the key thing. when the message is right, young people have a good sense of the message. if people try to pull the wool , i think it willakom be very difficult to pull one over on them. guest: a couple of points that joseph phrases. what is, i was not necessarily surprised at the significant turnaround in the 2006 and 2008 elections. young americans care about their community and their country. in this survey tt was released
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last week, 57% of college students are quite active in volunteering for community service. one-third are involved. about the ste of politics and the state of the u.s. in the rest of the world. what is necessary, though, is to respect them. if you respect and empowernorabk running for office is honorable. guest: that is still very discouraging, especially from our perch. our mission is to connect young people with politics and public service.
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when you look back at the 19 to rae that we have conducted, two-thirds, 54% of young people do not trust the government all the time or most the time. and 11 years later, unfortunately, it is still the same. it is difficult for people to want to run for office if they do not see the office as hon. or do not see it as a trust for the occupation. host: john, you are on the air. caller: i was wondering how these surveys and polls were correlated from state to state and if you can take the obstructionists -- abstractions
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differing from them. guest: when you're talking about the reporting as of president obama, he does significantly better in the midwest. there are also some significant differences based on gender and other things. we typically do not break it down on a state-by-state basis. we do it by region. host: tom, what do you think of this new poll out showing favorable numbers for president obama? caller: i do not think it is correct. i think we need to live by our constitution. we do not enforce our laws anymore. we let the government of what all over the american people. we are invaded every day by
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people who do not even belong here. they are ruining our economy. host: derek in clinton, ossipee. -- mississippi. caller: it seems like a young voters care more about things like a rights and abortion and women's rights and things like that. -- like gay-rights and abortion and women's rights and things like that. host: is it true that younger people tend to be more liberal? guest: it is, but it is incredibly important to understand that this generation is not a monolith. it is the largest generation the history of our country. 20 by% of -- 2 of members of this generation -- 25% of this
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nation, are in this age bracket. host: natomas 27 in lancaster -- adam is 27 in lancaster, pennsylvania. caller: i wonder if any of your call-in shows the extremism to the other side, the libertarian mindset. in the last election, ron paul had a popular campaign and it was mainly on line three of people. -- on line through young people. can you compare that to the baby boomers? is this generally a more liberal
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generation? i think it tends to go to more extremes. i think we see more socialist communists. guest: that is another interesting point. one of the of the methodologies that we use, we conducted in statistical analysis. i think we did pick up a libertarian streak in a relatively small, but passionate sector. we begin to talk about this libertarian streak among members of this generation. again, just the way the democrats have received the
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media, there are actually more republicans on facebook then democrats. members of the tea party organization have received a lot of attention. host: what about twitter? guest: it is far less relevant for those 18 to 29 years old. it is somewhat surprising. we had members of our undergraduate survey group to try to figure out why. the reason we have figured out is that you can engage with people on facebook rather than
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just publishing information on twitter. young people are more interested in engaging than just exchanging its permission. host: this person tweet in -- and the ability to that? -- any validity to that? guest: it is hard to respond to 140 or so or less characters. the headline of the survey is the president's fairly significant increase in support. first, we looked at the relationship between his camp
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and the generic republicans, 38% are still undecided. a couple of years ago, the president had 66% of the vote share. he is still quite that high, which means that republicans have made a serious effort with this generation. host: diana, you are on the air. caller: with all due respect, i do not believe that we will anneals will be respected or empowered until we start paying attention to the issues and voting to the issues. i cannot even tell you how many of my friends did not know what midterm elections were or the candidates.
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those are the elections that really count. guest: these are great callers this morning. for the first time in the 11 years of history of our survey, we had the number of young people in the midterm elections increase rather than decrease. we saw increased participation among young people. a lot of the parties have realized the importance of the way in which they are targeting the message to them. but you are right. it goes both ways. these people do have to organize themselves to, absolutely. host: janjaweed sin -- john
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tweets in -- can you speak to that? guest: i was recently in a focus group situation and we found a lot of youngeople, they want to be teachers and one tuesday to their -- close to their home town. -- they want to stay close to their home town. it is difficult with the budget crises most states to reading get a teaching job. 22% of 18 to 29-year-olds are actively seeking foreign new job. it is interesting to see how they are thinking about the world and politics.
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host: annette, what is your question or comment? caller: i would like to thank you for this study. i find it encouraging for the distant government that we have had. this is the first time under president obama that we have gone fairly had a government of accountability and inclusion. i think we have for the first time the lady that is in charge of vegetation -- of the
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population. this is the first time i think we have ever had threeomen on the supreme court. host: tie this into our conversation. caller: i think the 36% of young people having confidence in a letter to officials and thinking that they are honorable is an improvement over the past years. host: ok, let's get an answer to that. guest: it may be a slight improvement. and it has not changed significantly over the last decade since we asked the question. it is a serious concern and a, i think, should be to t entire country? we have so little respect for
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other people. 50 percent suntrust the u.s. military to do the right thing of all the time. -- 50% trust the u.s. military to do the right thing of the time. host: we are talking about a new survey of by harvard. in taking a look at what the baliles have to say about the president -- the 2012 campaign, national newspapers, 49%. france and facebook, 35%. what do you make of those numbers?
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guest: the really great news from the survey is, of course, that president obama and his campaign have reset expectations with young americans. it is probably better news for all of the news rooms across america to say that among this generation, traditional news is not dead. well over 50% on college campuses still prefer to receive most of their news. the second thing is, relationships. the integrated relationship is between those traditional sites and the sharing mechanism that is available on facebook. host: and the c-span is on
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facebook as well, so if you want to follow was, go to facebook .com/cspan. to villepin austin, texa caller: i just want to encourage people in this generation to sit back and give time to their own lives and focus on their own lives and not get too excited about politi. in my younger years i did not involve myself in politics at all. i just stayefocused on family and growing up the best i could.
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but i encourage people to study the constitution at that age word for word. get out a dictionary. the american language is very unique in the world -- host: we got your point. john, have you done a survey about the younger generations knowledge of how our government works? guest: i have not done a survey. we do not believe in testing folks whether in this generation or another, about the constitution. you have a responsibility to yourself to study and produce a paid, whether in community service or politics or voting.
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i was recently traveling through a number of areas throughout the country and found a lot of people in their 40's and 50's and 60's disappointed in themselves personally. early 30's's and they spend time doing the right thing in their own eyes, which was great. they spend time getting married and having families and did not get more involved in politics. i would encourage young >> we believe "washington journal". began to the rest of the segment on our website -- you can see the rest of the segment on our website at the house will take of votes at
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6:30 p.m. eastern. there will also be a measure on repealing the net neutrality rules and a bill that would strip the epa's regulation of greenhouse gas emissions. we'll be watching how the budget bill shapes up as federal funding government ends on friday, possibly leading to a government shutdown. now to live coverage of the u.s. house. the speaker pro tempore: the house will be in order. the prayer will be offered by our chaplain, father coughlin. chaplain coughlin: lord god, your loving and sustaining presence breaks through certain moments of time.
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you enlighten your people to take the next step and make the necessary decisions that will lead them through the maze of present needs. guide the members of the house of representatives that priorities will reflect the full promise of your compassion for those most in need. build greater justice and secure the path of peace in this fragile and complex world. lord, be with us now and years to come. amen. the speaker pro tempore: the chair has examined the journal of the last day's proceedings and announces to the house his approval thereof. pursuant to clause 1 of rule 1, the journal stands approved. the pledge of allegiance will be led by the gentleman from kansas, mr. pompeo. mr. pompeo: thank you. will everyone please join me,
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including those in the gallery reciting the pledge of allegiance to the united states of america. i pledge allegiance to the flag of the united states of america and to the republic for which it stands, one nation under god, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all. the speaker pro tempore: the chair will entertain requests for one-minute speeches. for what purpose does the gentleman from south carolina seek recognition? mr. wilson: i ask permission to address the house for one minute. revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. wilson: mr. speaker, this is an important week for american families. the continuing resolution expires friday. liberals are clearly responsible for a possible government shutdown. the american people know spending is out of control with a record deficit in february of $223 billion. borrowing from creditors overseas is $5 billion a day. putting american jobs at risk. senior citizens are threatened with their savings and social
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security becoming worthless. young people are being burdened with crushing debt which will lead to oppressive taxation. how did this week arise? the issue was not adopted by the liberal house last year. the continuing resolution for this year was passed by the new conservative house but has not been adopted by the current liberal senate. speaker john boehner has fought for the pledge to america which the voters supported last november with the record of over 63 liberals being defeated. senate liberals have been revealed scleeming inflammatory name-calling of republican whip kevin mccarthy instead of good faith negotiations. i hope this week the senate liberals put politics aside and do what is right for commonsense government. we cannot mortgage the future to happiness. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from ohio seek recognition? mr. kucinich: i request permission to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. kucinich: it is sad our
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government runs on a system -- it is said a government runs on a system of checks and balances, but when it comes to war, the administration writes all the checks and congress doesn't know what the balance is. the administration can wage war and ignore congress as the secretary of state shut up, keep giving them money. expanding war expands the pentagon costing more than $700 billion this year. that's 50% of discretionary depend spending. the united states funds 25% of nato's military expenses. all these wars cost trillions. as of today we will have spent $805 billion to bring democracy to iraq. $443 billion to bring democracy to afghanistan. perhaps over $1 billion already to bring democracy to libya. i have an idea. let's bring democracy to america. instead of cutting programs for the poor, for children, pregnant women, or shutting down the government, let's shut the wars down.
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bring -- build bridges at home don't blow them abroad. bring democracy to america. jobs for all, health care for all. education for all. retirement security for all. end the wars. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. for what purpose does the gentleman from kansas seek recognition? mr. pompeo: i rise to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. pompeo: thank you, mr. speaker. today i rise to recognize the tremendous accomplishment of the wichita state university and its men's basketball team. shocker basketball is rich in tradition and shocker's 10,000 screaming fans at nearly every game. for the first time, wichita state university is now the reining champion of the national invitational tournament. last thursday they finished their tourney with a convincing victory over a worthy opponent, the crime son tide of the university of alabama. this a glorious cap to an excellent season. this year they won 29 games, most in history.
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losing two games to final four opponents by a total of five points. it is my honor to congratulate them, its president, the athletic director, the basketball team's head coach, and his staff, and all the great young men who played their hearts out in new york to bring the title back to wichita. a great season for the mighty shocker nation. mtxe, go shocks. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from massachusetts seek recognition? mr. mcgovern: to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. mcgovern: mr. speaker, the hunger fast of 2011, the efforts by anti-hunger leaders to highlight the draconian cuts to important lifesaving programs included in h.r. 1, the house republican budget proposal, continues to expand. every day the number of hunger fast participants increases, every day awareness of these cuts to those programs that provide a circle of protection rises. every day the resolve to fight
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these cuts grow. i am thankful and proud of these brave americans who are giving up food to fight against these harmful cuts to programs like w.i.c. as well as other programs. this weekend more joined this effort, including the heads and members of scei, moveon, and others. budgets are moral documents and the cuts in h.r. 1 cross that line. i stand with the participants of the hunger fast in opposition to the h.r. 1. instead of cutting programs that help people get access to food and nutrition, we should commit ourselves to ending hunger in america. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from arkansas seek recognition? >> request permission to address the house for one minute. revise and extend. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. >> mr. speaker, i rise today to celebrate the milestone in the life of a lady professional golfer, stacey lewis, of the woodlands, texas, and of late the university of arkansas at fayetteville. she won her first lpga golf
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tournament yesterday in california. the craft, nabisco championship, a major event on the lpga tour. mr. speaker, my purpose today is not necessarily to bring attention to a sporting achievement, but rather to acknong the hardship in this young lady's life that makes this accomplishment incredible. mr. womack: she suffered from scleosis as a child and spent her teen years in a back brace. only because of her drive and determination did she reach the pinnacle of women's professional sports. add to that she dominated the field the very week her grandfather passed away. i'm proud of stacey lewis, i admire her grit. literally and figuratively. she has a spine of steel. i join her parents and the razorback nation in saluting her for what we all hope is the first of many championship trophies. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman
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from tennessee seek recognition? mr. cohen: to address the house for a stretch of one minute. mr. cohen: thank you, mr. speaker. today is many things in different people's lives. to many it's the ncaa final tournament game. to many in my city of membercies, tennessee, it's a day 43 years ago dr. martin luther king was assassinated. it's a holiday in my city and we reflect on his great talent and his dream and reflect on all that we have learned since then. but on yesterday the third of april a great member feian named larry finch died. he put together those two events. he was a basketball player and basketball star like none other in memphis and maybe like none other in the united states of america. and he was a person who brought people together in the way that dr. king dreamed they would. a city of memphis that was split and hurt and racially divided in 1968.
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and because of that racial divide, it caused dr. king to have to come to memphis to stand up for the sanitation workers and the right of employees to have bargaining units and dignity in life. and memphis was even racially hurt more because of that assassination. but larry finch stayed home in memphis, a local basketball player who was the first great basketball star of african-american descent to play at memphis state. he took our team in the national finals in 1973 and united the city like never before. whites and blacks came to cheer for them. he spent his entire life in memphis, winning more games at men 23iss state. he was a beloved individual who brought people together and didn't know race. he died saturday. he will be -- have his home going on saturday, this coming saturday. i show you the memphis commercial from the day after he died. the greatest. the entire first section is nothing but larry finch and his
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story from orange mound, tennessee, and melrose high school, to memphis state and the final four, where he had 29 points. we would have won but for bill walton having the game of his life. i mourn my friend, the city of memphis mourns larry finch. sports can be more than winning or losing. larry finch did that. he was a great american and we are lucky he came this way for the people of memphis and our nation. thank you, mr. speaker. thank you very much. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20, the chair will postpone further proceedings today on the additional motions to suspend the rules on which a recorded vote or the yeas and nays are ordered. or on which the vote incurs objection under clause 6 of rule 20. any record vote on the postponed question will be taken after 6:30 p.m. today. for what purpose does the gentleman from florida seek recognition? >> i move to suspend the rules and pass h.r. 1246.
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the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 1246, a bill to reduce the amounts otherwise authorized to be appropriated to the department of defense for printing and reproduction. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from florida, mr. west, and the gentlewoman from guam, ms. bordallo, each will control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from florida. mr. west: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. and ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks on the bill under consideration. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. west: mr. speaker, i rise to support h.r. 1246. it is a simple, commonsense bill that calls for an overall 10% paperwork reduction in the printing and reproduction costs of the department of defense. more importantly the american people support h.r. 1246 as more than 150,000 people voted
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online via the youcut program on passing this bill. the american people are behind this and we need to be behind the american people. h.r. 1246 will help us keep our promise to the american people that we will cut waste, fraud, and abuse in government spending. and spend taxpayer dollars efficiently. that includes every department or agency. in fiscal year 2012, the department of defense proposes to spend $357 million for printing and reproduction services. i am not arguing the paper copies are no longer needed. we all still rely on paper, but i do not understand why we need examples of these high, expensive, glossy color briefing slides and slick books that the d.o.d. sends over here for everything from briefing slides to budget rollouts and miscellaneous reports. if anyone is interested, the house armed services committee has a boatload of these fancy
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printed reports. i think the information that d.o.d. needs to get to us as well as share internally amongst them selves or with the public can just as easily be conveyed using plain black and white copies printed on both sides. now a days a lot can be transmitted elech trnically. during my 2 years of active duty service in the united states army, i witnessed the growth of the excessive power point briefs and reproduction. i am well aware of areas where saving money is very possible. and this is one of those areas. these cuts are aimed at wasteful defense department spending and will not affect the overall mission of our men and women in uniform in protecting our national security. mr. speaker, a mere 10% reduction to this one account will save taxpayers $35.7 million in fiscal year 2012, and nearly $180 million over the next five years. we owe it to the taxpayers to
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take this step. now this may seem like a small amount to some, but imagine, if every member of congress all 435 of us took it upon ourselves to do the exact same, we could cut some wasteful spending we would regain the trust and confidence of the american people as good stewards of their resources. let's pass h.r. 1246 and i reserve the balance of my time. . the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from florida reserves his time. the gentlewoman from guam is recognized. ms. bordallo: i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman is recognized. ms. bordallo: is an nik with us-sounding bill -- is an innocuous-sounding bill by reducing 10% of the printing budget. i believe that most of us would agree that the goal of h.r.
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1246, to reduce dependence on paper copies in a time of proliferating copy media would be reasonable. however, in effect, the bill does little to address that much more serious deficit issues facing our nation today, including issues in the defense arena that should be thoughtfully debated by members of this congress. the bill is estimated to save some $35.7 million in fiscal year 2012, and then another $180 mill over the next five fiscal years which hardly makes a dent in multitrillion-dollar deficit facing our nation. one could also argue that the bill is ill-timed, coming on the heels of increasing requests for the department of defense to produce documents for oversight being conducted
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by congressional committees. indeed, requests from the congress for required reports, including, mr. speaker, from our own house armed services committee, number in the hundreds of thousands. so it would seem somewhat hypocritical of us to be cutting funding for printing and reproduction services when we, we, members of congress, are asking for more and more and more reports. mr. speaker, while i will not encourage my colleagues to oppose this bill i consider it a bad use of valuable floor time that could be used to address legislation to put this country on a track toward greater fiscal responsibility. and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from guam reserves the balance of her time. the gentleman from florida is recognized. mr. west: thank you, mr. speaker. and i will say this -- i do
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believe that we must take a first step when we talk about deficit reduction. i think that this is one of the important things. as i said in my statement, if each and every one of us in this house, all 435, made the effort to find these emphasis of fraud, waste and abuse then we can have more significant cuts to our deficit and, of course, our debt. i think at a critical time when the gentlewoman from guam just stated, maybe following along with this, we do need to look at the amount of requests for the reports that we're having. but, still, as we're talking about the efficiency in the department of defense, this is a first step toward that efficiency occurring. and i think that anyone that would not be willing to support this says that they're not willing to take that first step toward getting the department of defense and all other departments and all of our agencies to be more effective and more efficient, but, as well, that does start with us here in the house of representatives. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from florida reserves his time. the gentlewoman from guam is
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recognized. ms. bordallo: mr. speaker, i would like to correct the previous speaker. there are 435 voting members of congress but there are 441 members of the united states of house of representatives. although i represent a territory and i'm not allowed to vote, i do make requests for -- during committee time for reports. so i just wanted to make that correction. and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from guam reserves the balance of her time. the gentleman from florida is recognized. mr. west: mr. speaker, at this time i have no further requests, and also apologies to you, madam. i am prepared to close after my colleague has yielded back her time. i continue to reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from florida reserves his time. the gentlewoman from guam is recognized. ms. bordallo: mr. speaker, i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady from guam yields back the balance of her time.
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the gentleman from florida is recognized. mr. west: mr. speaker, i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass h.r. 1246. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspended -- mr. west: mr. speaker, i request the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: the yeas and nays are requested. all those in favor of taking this vote by the yeas and nays will rise and remain standing until counted. a sufficient number having arisen, the yeas and nays are ordered. pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20, further proceedings on this question will be postponed. pursuant to clause 12-a of rule 1, the chair declares the house in recess until approximately
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>> the senate is on our companion network c-span2. tonight on "the communicators," the fcc commissioner michael gcopps. >> this kind of sucks the oxygen out of so many issues that are pending before the federal communications commission. we can chew gum and walkup the same time, i guess, but this affects so much of what we're doing. >> communicators "" tonight on c-span2 -- "the communicators"
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tonight on c-span2. >> nearly 1500 middle school and high-school students submitted documentaries on the theme "washington, d.c. -- through my lens." watch the winning videos just before "washington journal" and during the program you can meet the students who created them. you can see the videos online anytime at >> now president obama's national security advisor from earlier today qd said the u.s. had outdated assumptions on the arab world -- today. he said the u.s. had outdated assumptions on the arab world. he talked about the recent downfall of arab governments that were once thought unshakable. he talked about a votes possibly recognizing palestine as a state -- a vote possibly recognizing palestine as a state.
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>> i was here about a year ago for last convention. and i think it is fair to say that probably very few in this audience predicted the kind of a people that we're seeing in the region right now. i will ask for show of hands -- [laughter] you do not even know what the question was. [laughter] does that always work when you're going for pledges, too? even before you are asked? [applause] david said that i had worked on these issues for more than a quarter of a century. thank for reminding me -- thanks for reminding me. if you look back over this span of time. i cannot think of a time where we have seen this kind of upheaval in the middle east like what we're seeing now.
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there is not a comparable period over the long period of time that i have worked on this region. jokingly, i was asking how many people here would have predicted that you would have had popular revolts that would have swept out ben-ali, mubarak, created what we're seeing now in libya, huge demonstrations across the region literally from algeria to yemen to syria to bahrain. the fact is that, what we're seeing right now is quite extraordinary, number one. in the period of upheaval and uncertainty, there are great opportunities and great risks. think about what we're seeing right now. if these upheavals and their transitions can evolve the right
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way, the potential for having much more representative governments, a very different and much more positive future, something that makes the kind of independence that makes peace possible and in during could be the result of all of this -- and enduring could be the result of all this. if you have extremists hijacked these processes, and you could have greater instability and threat to our interests. the stakes are very high. need to manage to the extent that we can is great -- the need to manage, to the extent that we can, is great. i want to talk about what we are trying to do to ensure and manage the character, pace, and process in a way that serves our interest and service producing a middle east that is more peaceful, more stable, more free, and, ultimately, more
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prosperous. maybe the place to start is with the question. why is it that so many of the specialists on the middle east, inside and outside of the government, for a long period of time, assumed that this kind of changed simply was not possible? -- change simply was not possible? i would suggest to you that there are a number of a sentence that tended to guide many of the specialists -- there were a number of assumptions that tended to guide many of the specialists. one assumption was that the character of these regimes, not only their determination of power, but the coercive influence they had, their readiness they had to use intimidation of force to preserve power -- it was just so daunting that it prevented this kind of change. the second assumption was that
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the publics were too fearful of challenging the regimes, lacked the hope. where they were more liberal actors, they were suppressed, too weak, or to divided -- too divided. a third assumption is that the arab street was so caught up in identifying with other causes, like the cause of the palestinians, that it trumpeted their own need in their interest to have aspirations for their own future. a fourth assumption was that this was a region that was characterized by such fear of instability and chaos that they preferred order to disorder. there may well be other assumptions, but i do not have
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enough time to go through all of them. i thought i would encapsulate what i think have been the core assumption that seemed to guide analysis of the region for so long. i think it there is one thing we can say about those traditional assumptions -- they do not seem to wash today. the reality is that we're seeing in the region are telling us that something profoundly different is taking shape. we have to ask ourselves what accounts for the dramatic change. why are we seeing this? most fundamentally, i would suggest to you there has been a loss hasfear. -- a loss of fear. that is embodied in the youth who are driving this, the so- called facebook generation, the ones who are responsible for creating the pressure for change that we are now seeing. they have led the way. they represent what is the demographic reality of this part
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of the world. there is a youth bulge. this generation of youth have been profoundly frustrated. they have been profoundly frustrated for good reason. in far too many places, we have seen governments that basically provide only for the few. they denied opportunities to the many. tion ofclude participan those who wish to shape a future generation. they're now connected through satellite television, through the internet, through social media platforms. they know what exists elsewhere. they know what their own circumstances. they know the gap between what they want and what has been available to them. lacking in hope for better future and facing the daily
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humiliation of a kind of ongoing brutality, what we have seen is a few brave souls become determined to defy the states. in tunisia, it was a 26-year-old fruit vendor who was the catalyst for revolutionary change. he set himself on fire in front of a governmental building after an official in spector sees his fruit slapped him publicly. in egypt, there were thousands of people who signed up for a facebook page honoring the memory of a 28. -- 20-year-old businessman beaten to death by security thugs because he had the audacity to post on his blog
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examples of corruption within the police. those who joined the page knew that they were showing up for something that would be watched by security forces, but they joined anyway. it was one of the creators of that page, a young executive, who became a powerful symbol for the movement, particularly after he was detained for 12 days. he came out as defiant as when he went in. he gave an emotionally charged and routing interview that went far role -- viral and helped ensure this was a revolution that would not be stopped. one thing that drove these individuals and this generation pushing this change was not the traditional ideology of nationalism. it was instead a powerful
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desire for dignity and an end to humiliation. in the face of these changes, how has the obama administration responded? we had to recognize we are not the driving force of the change. ke in howe a huge stat it evolves. a number of principals have guided us. the first is that it is critical to have non-violence. it is critical for the government not to respond violently. it is critical for the protesters to maintain a posture of nonviolence. political change has to evolve politically. secondly, we have insisted that
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governments have to protect universal values and principles such as the freedom of speech and access to innovation. thirdly, because the grievances are real and meaningful, the only way to deal with them is through a process of credible and tangible reform. president obama understood this early on. he said that the world is changing. you have a young, vibrant generation looking for greater opportunity. if you are governing these countries, you have to get ahead of change. you cannot be behind the curve. we have committed to working closely with those governments undertaking a meaningful effort to carry out reforms. when governments have chosen the wrong approach, when they have tried to preserve the status quo through traditional means of
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coercion and violent, we have spoken out. on friday following another day of violence in syria, the white house press secretary issued a statement. "we condemn and deplore the use of violence against citizens demonstrating in syria. we applaud the courage of the syrian people. violence is not the answer to the grievances. what is needed is a path to greater freedom, democracy, opportunity, and justice." over the past few months, we have spoken out repeatedly and will continue to do so. it is not a surprise that when we see acts of violence against demonstrators, we're going to make it clear that is the wrong way to proceed. if there is anything that anyone in the region should have learned over the last couple months, it is that trying to deny and stifle the call for
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responsible grievances is not going to work. the government of bahrain should also recognize that if you try to shut down newspapers or rest loggers -- arrest bloggers, this is not the path to a successful outcome. the obama administration has not just talk about what needs to be done, it has also acted. nowhere is that more true than in libya in response to what gaddafi has sought to do to his own people. as his troops advanced towards the city of benghazi and as he promised no mercy, we've mobilized in broad international coalition determined to prevent what would have been a humanitarian catastrophe.
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[applause] we would have seen a human slaughter. that is a certainty. that would have been a disaster from every conceivable standpoint. the moral standpoint, the impact on the region. if we have permitted this to take place, you can imagine what would have happened. that is in terms of instability, chaos, and the impact of that on tunisia and egypt better trying to manage the process of transition. having helped to produce two security council resolutions, we joined a broad consensus that included arab participants in in forcing what was called upon by the 1973 resolution to enforce a
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no-fly zone and protect civilians. from the outset of the conflict, the president made it very clear that on the front and we would use our unique capabilities to create an environment that would allow others to be able to carry on and carried out -- carried out the no-fly zone and civilian missions. the transition took place last thursday when we handed over to make a full operational command for all missions in libya. we will continue to support them. we will provide intelligence and logistical support. moving forward, we know we have helped to create space and time for the libyan people to determine their own destiny.
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we will work with others to help insure and promote what will be an inclusive process reflects the will and rights of the libyan people. elsewhere in the region, we are working actively to support the transitions under way to ensure that their peaceful -- that they are peaceful. we're focused on egypt and tunisia. in egypt, we have had a regular dialogue with the supreme council of the armed forces, with the government, and with a wide range of non-governmental groups. the consistent theme we have emphasized with them has been that it is critical to support a set of principles, processes, and institutions. we're focused on those and not on personalities. if you look at where we are in
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egypt, it is remarkable. on march 19, 1 and 18 million people turned out to vote in a referendum on constitutional amendments. they did so peacefully and in a transparent way. the process was overseen by the judiciary. it was a remarkable display. egypt is facing enormous challenges. the transition represents an enormous task. in the coming year, they have to deal with an economy that is struggling to this point. they have to deal with the elections scheduled for the parliament and then for a president. they also have to draft a new constitution. we have made a number of suggestions focused on how to ensure the process will unfold
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freely, fairly, and peacefully. we have committed to do what we can throw out the transition to be of help. we understand the stakes. we have reassigned $150 million in assistance to support egypt's transition. we're working to establish an enterprise fund that can be a sector -- that can be stimulus for private sector growth and provide access for low-cost capital to business. we're working with allies to develop a broader approach to economic stabilization. if what we saw in tahrir square and the march referendum tells us anything, it tells us there is a reason to be hopeful and optimistic that the egyptian people will become increasingly invested in their government and
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establish a degree of legitimacy we have not seen before. renewed legitimacy of the governments in the middle east will not only improve the es, itity of the country'i will provide new opportunities for regional cooperation and ultimately for peace as well. for far too long, we have had governments that lack legitimacy sought to shift attention. they sought to divert the them on to usom and the israelis. one of the most remarkable things is the preoccupation with domestic issues. they focus on the abuses of the security focus -- forces.
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the focus on the lack of economic opportunities. they focus on the limited ability to participate in decisions that affect their own future. i expect that when these populations become empowered, they will have the responsibility for shaping the future of their country'es will want them to be successful. they are more likely to see the value and importance of pursuing peace and cooperation. the more that countries are able to invest in resources and their own future, they're much less likely to invest in conflict. the more they are able to adjust their own needs, the more likely they are to address the causes of what produced the arabs bring in the first place.
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shimon peres will have lunch with the president tomorrow in the white house. you may remember in 1993, he spoke about a new middle east in which there would be trade and cooperation for peace. that was a vision which had taken place over the last two decades. the reality is it could not be built on an authoritarian foundation. look at the region and what do you see? it has almost no inter-regional trade. it has little internal investment. it has few of the institutions that you see in almost every other area. if it is going to be different, all of that has to change. these democratic movements can offer the possibility of creating a very different kind
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of middle east. that is something we have a strong interest in pursuing. we can help that process. we can facilitate the process. we can work with civil society, non-governmental groups, international financial institutions, and by promoting public-private partnerships to help these countries acquire the resources and knowledge they need to build a very different kind of future. peace is essential in the region to enhance trade and cooperation and insure that as a new generation of leaders emerged, they will see that peace is a possibility. they understand that peace is a possibility. they also need to see that negotiations can take place and produce.
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israelis and palestinians need to see that in negotiations, and their real needs can be understood by the other side and also addressed by the other side. during the time of change and uncertainty, israelis must see that their security will be addressed in a meaningful way and in a way that does not read them to honorable to uncertainty and change is taking place in the region. palestinians need to see that they can have an independent state that is contiguous and viable. the more tangible signs the occupation is receding, the more they will believe is a possibility. in this time of uncertainty and change, there is one thing that is not uncertain. that is the relationship of the united states and israel. at a time of such upheaval and change, knowing that we have a friend that we can count on is something critical to the united
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states. with israel, we have a relationship that is in during because it is bound together by a set of shared values and interests. one thing i can say without any qualification at all is that the commitment to israel's security is unshakeable and ironclad. [applause] the fact is that those are not just words. we're not just approaching them from the standpoint of it being a slogan. we are giving it life and meaning on a daily basis. secretary gates was in israel a little over a week ago. he said something that i want to quote. he has served in government over
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40 years. he said, "i cannot recall a time in my public life and our two countries have a closer relationship. they are cooperating closely in missile defense technology, and in training exercises. the corporation and support insures that israel will continue to maintain its military edge." our cooperation is contributing to security on a daily basis. it is signified most recently by israel's deployment of the rockets' defense system which we helped to fund by providing an additional $200 million this year. i am one of those people who was one of the original drafters of the strategic cooperation with israel.
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that was designed to reflect shared values and interests. the institutions that grew out became real. the exchanges they produced a highly stylized. what has changed in this administration is the ongoing, frequent discussions across the range of national security issues and concerns. i can reflect what secretary gates was saying. in all the time i have served and all the different administrations i have served in, i have never seen the kind of strategic cooperation exists today between the united states and israel. that is a fact. [applause]
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it is important because of the changes we are seeing. with change comes opportunity and risk. iran sees in turmoil something to exploit. it is using hezbollah to try to inflame tensions in countries like bahrain when what is needed is to overcome sectarian differences and respond to legitimate grievances. what hezbollah does makes that more difficult. iran has been quick to criticize arab governments for repressing his people -- its people. that is a dramatic pause for irony. [laughter] i want you to think about the fact that iran criticizes arab
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governments for arresting its people. that is at the moment it does that to its own people and more. think about the irony that at the very moment what we have seen is people throughout the arab world finding their place, iran is determined to squash the voice of their own people. the iranians are not fooling anybody. they're not fooling anybody as they continue to pursue their nuclear program in defiance of u.n. security council resolutions. as the national security advisers stressed last week, even with all of the events unfolding, we remain focused on the strategic imperative of ensuring that iran does not acquire nuclear weapons. we will continue to increase the pressure on the iranians. on march 24, the u.n. human
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rights council passed a resolution appointing someone to monitor and investigate human rights abuses in iran. that is something that adl applauded. iran continues to contend with sanctions that are far more comprehensive than any they have faced before. the result of those sanctions is already being felt. iran cannot do business with any reputable bank. iran cannot conduct transactions in dollars or euros. iran cannot get insurance for shipping. iran is finding it increasingly difficult to get capital, investment, and technology to put into an antiquated infrastructure that it has in oil and natural gas. around $60 billion in projects have been put on hold or
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discontinued. across every sector of the iranian economy, you see international companies no longer doing business because they understand the risk of doing that. unless and until iraq complies with its obligations under the treaty. unless and until iraq complies with its obligations under the treaty and u.n. resolutions, we will continue to ratchet up the pressure. iran has to understand it has a choice to make and it will not be able to evade it. you can get a sense that we have a very wide array of challenges to contend with. our agenda is clear. support the coalition forces in their mission to protect civilians of libya and support the peaceful democratic transition there. support and help to consolidate
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the transitions in places like egypt and tunisia. encourage others in the region that they need to get out in front of reform and not hang back. work to promote peace between israelis, palestinians, and arabs. make sure that we continue to build the pressure on iran. it is a daunting agenda. i can assure you that we are addressing it. the president is determined to address it with great vigor. thank you very much. [applause] the ambassador has agreed to
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take questions. i invite you to come to the microphone on each side. police say your name and where you are from. >> good morning. george gibson from houston, texas. a very important question was asked of ambassador orren last night. i think the audience would be interested in the administration response to the same question. how does the administration plan to respond to the move to recognize a palestinian state outside of the peace process? in the general assembly, moves have been made. does the administration have a plan for that? >> steve daniels, palm beach
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gardens. can you talk about saudi arabia and the likelihood of what is happening in other countries to happening in saudi arabia? >> i am asking about yemen and wondering. i know the administration has changed his position, maybe, that is what i have heard. i am curious what you have to say about that. >> i will take them in the order they were given or asked. the first question had to do with the efforts to produce recognition of a palestinian state. we have consistently made it clear that the way to produce a palestinian state is through negotiations. it is not through unilateral declarations were going to the
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u.n. region or by going to the u.n. we have said this does not make it more likely to produce a palestinian state. our posture has been consistent in opposition. we will continue to oppose it. i will note that president obama has said he does not intend to go that way. he prefers negotiations. the most important thing is for us to find a way to get back into negotiations. that way, palestinian statehood can be achieved. it will not be achieved through other means. as regards to started arabia, i think is fair to say -- with regards to saudi arabia, i think is fair to say we're watching region undergoing tremendous change. it is not going to be the same in every country. that is a fact. this circumstance is different
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in different countries. the reality is change is going to be part of the landscape. every country will have to come up with ways to address it. that is the reality that will involve all states. i think it is fair to say that saudi arabia is a country that has a society that is more conservative. i do believe that responding to the need for change is something that is probably going to be universal throughout the region. and yemen, we have not changed our position. i do not know where you heard that from. there are clearly demands for change in human. there will have to be a process that produces it. we're working to ensure that the process can be carried out peacefully and done in a way that ensures stability in response to the needs and
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interests of the people there. the basic principles guiding us for those who will continue to apply as it relates to the region as a whole. [applause] >> dennis, ambassador ross, in these uncertain times, the country is fortunate that has someone with your expertise, commitment, understanding, and a sensitivity to the issues. i remember sitting here last year. you did whisper to me that this may be the year when democracy will speed in the middle east. i do not know if you remember, but i remember it. hopefully, next year when you grace some podium, i am not sure
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what to expect with a sense of certainty. that is true peace between israelis and palestinians. that is something you will be able to analyze and welcome with us as something we hope and strive for. that is something you have given more than 25 years of your life, experience, and knowledge to achieve. hopefully, we will achieve and witness it together. thank you again. [applause] >> that was dennis ross at the adl earlier. when house members return, they're expected to take a bill of that will cut the printing budget. this week, a measure repealing the net neutrality rules and the
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bill removes the authority to regulate greenhouse gas emissions from the epa. stopgap spending to keep the federal government running. on friday, the house and senate would have to budget -- pass the budget before the government shuts down. as lawmakers continued deliberations, you can follow the debate this week on c-span. tonight on the communicators, s.c. -- fcc commission later -- commissioner michael copps. >> what troubles me is that it sucks the energy of so many issues pending before the federal communications commission. we can chew gum and what of the same time, i guess, but this affects so much of what we are doing. >> the communicators to live on c-span. >> drop the month of april we will feature the top winners of
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this year's c-span studentcam competition. watched the winning videos every morning on c-span at 6:50 a.m. eastern, just before "washington journal" and during the program, meet the students who created them. you can see all of them on line any time at studentcam >> attorney-general eric holder said lahood 9/11 plotters will be trial -- will be tried. he also said the justice department is better equipped than congress to make decisions about the best way to try terror suspects. this is about 15 minutes.
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>> in november of 2009, i announced that a lead shaikh mohammad and four other individuals would stand trial for their role of the terror attacks against our country: hegseth gambert 11, 2001. as i said then, the decision between federal courts and military commissions was not an easy one to make. i began my review of this case with an open mind and with just one goal, to look at the facts, to gut the law, and to choose a new where we could achieve swift justice most effectively for the victims of those horrendous attacks and family members. after thoroughly studying the case it became clear to me that the best venue for prosecution was in federal court. let me be clear, i stand by that decision today.
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as the indictment unsealed today reveals, we were prepared to bring a powerful case against khalid shaikh mohammed and his four conspirators, one of the most well-documented cases i've ever seen in my experience as a prosecutor. we carefully evaluated the evidence and concluded that we could prove the defendant's guilt, while adhering to the bedrock traditions and values of our laws. we have consulted extensively with the intelligence community and it developed detailed plans for handling classified evidence. had this case proceeded in manhattan or in an alternative venue in the u.s., as i seriously explored in the last year, i am confident our justice system could have operated with the same distinction that has been its hallmark for over 200 years. unfortunately, since i made that
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decision, members of congress have intervened and imposed restrictions, blocking the administration from bring in the guantanamo detainees to trial in the u.s., regardless of the venue. is the president has said, those unwise and warranted -- and unwarranted restrictions undermine our counter-terrorism efforts and could harm our national security. decisions about who, where, and how to prosecute have always been, and must remain the responsibility of the executive branch. members of congress simply do not have access to the evidence and other information necessary to make prosecution judgments. yet, if taken one of the nation's most tested -- they have taken one of the nation's most tested and time-honored tools out of our hands in a way that has serious ramifications. we will continue to seek to
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repeal those restrictions. but we also must face a simple truth. those restrictions are unlikely to be repealed in the near future and we simply cannot allow a trial to be delayed any longer for the victims of the 9/11 attacks, or for their family members who have waited nearly a decade for justice. i have talked to these family members on many occasions over these last two years. like many americans, they differ on where the 9/11 conspirators should be prosecuted. there is one thing on which they all agreed. we must bring the conspirators to justice. today, i am referring to cases of co-lead shaikh mohammad -- khalid shaikh mohammed and his co-conspirators to the department of defense to proceed in these missions.
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furthermore, i've had it over to the prosecutor to dismiss the indictment and a judge has granted that motion. prosecutors from both the department of defense and the department of justice have been working together and i have full faith and confidence in the military mission to appropriately handled this case. the department of justice will continue to offer all the support necessary as this critically important matter moves forward. i believe they can unveiled just verdicts. it must not be delayed any longer. since i made the decision to prosecute the legend 9/11 conspirators, the effectiveness of our federal courts and the
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thousands of prosecutors, judges, law enforced officers and defense attorneys who work in them have been subjected to a number of unfair and often unfounded criticisms. too many people, many of whom should know better, many of whom certainly do no better have expressed doubt about our time- honored and tine test its system of justice. that is not only misguided, but simply wrong. the fact is, federal courts have been proven to be an unparalleled instrument for bringing terrorists to justice. our courts have convicted hundreds and our prisons today safely and securely hold hundreds, many of them serving long sentences. there is no other tool that has demonstrated the capacity to stop terrorists and get
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information from them as our justice system. let me be clear. our national security demands that we continue to prosecute terrorists in federal courts, and we will do so. our heritage, our values and the legacy to future generations also demands that we have full faith and confidence in a court system that has distinguished this nation throughout its history. finally, i want to thank the prosecutors from the southern district of new york and the eastern district of virginia, who have spent countless hours working to bring this case to trial. there are some of the most dedicated and patriotic americans i have ever encountered and our nation is safer because of the work they do every day. they have honored their country through their efforts on this case and i thank them for it. i am proud of each and every one of them. sadly, this case has been marked by needless controversy since
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the beginning. despite all of the argument and debate it has engendered, prosecuting these terrorists should never have been about scoring political points. in the end is about the people who were killed in the attacks on the deadly day in september many years ago. they were intent on crippling our nation and attacking the values that we hold dear. this case has always been about delivering justice for those victims and for their surviving loved ones. it is about nothing else. it is my sincere hope that through the actions that we take today will finally be able to deliver the justice that they have so long deserved.
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>> what you described was what was passed last year in congress. why not move on that faster? secondly, you have told families of victims on capitol hill that door with the -- going with that decision is a role of the dice. have you changed your mind on the position? >> i tend to think that the article for records are the best place to take them. we had to deal with the
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beginning of the cases in manhattan and congress had to deal with these restrictions would put in place. we made this decision as quickly as we could taking into account all of the factors. >> is your understanding that opinion these cases to the military commission, that is -- allows the death penalty to be raised in? >> it is definitely a question. i think that is still an open question. >> these military commissions, if they are held at guantanamo, will that mean that these facilities have to stay open for many months, if not years? >> we will fight to get those restrictions lifted.
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it would probably extend the time at guantanamo. it is still our intention to lift those restrictions. >> how long you think the trials will take? >> i would like to refer that to the department of defense, which should be making a statement this afternoon. >> you have been pretty clear how you feel about the congressional actions here, but presumably, most of those lawmakers represent constituents who have their own views. is it your thinking that you know best and there is just no room for the public's view on where the trial should be held? >> i don't want to hold myself out as omniscient or anything like that. the reality is, i know this case in the way that members of congress do not. i have looked at the file. i have spoken to the
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prosecutors. i know the tactical perspectives. do i know better than them? yes. i respect their ability to disagree, but i think they should respect the fact that this is a unique executive branch function. i have reluctantly made the determination that these kids -- these cases should be brought in a military commission. >> the groups in new york city that came to oppose the trial there, should they have any voice in such a decision? >> we took into account a whole variety of things when try to make this determination. it is one of the reasons i had considered the possibility of a prison at the set -- in the southern district of new york. it would have lowered the cost pretty dramatically, but even that option was taken off the table by congress. i grew up in new york city.
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i went to school in queens and i went to manhattan for college, for law school and is still a place i consider home. i have full confidence of the authorities in new york to try this case safely and securely in york city. it is still my view that this case could have been tried in manhattan. >> even with what you just said about the death penalty, you said it was an open question. does that mean there is a real chance they could serve life in prison as opposed to getting the death penalty, which they will probably have a better chance at in the eastern district of virginia? >> i will leave that to the folks who are responsible for these cases. it is an open question, but one that could be resolved. >> that sounds like 10 more years of litigation all the way back up to the supreme court. >> i have confidence in the ability of the folks on the
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military commission side to bring these cases before the appropriate authorities within a relatively short period of time. i hope what i have done today is to mason the date but -- is to hasten the date by which families of the victims will how some answers. thank you. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2011] >> the u.s. house is in recess subject to the call of the chair until 6:30 p.m. on the agenda, cutting the defense -- the budget. also, repealing the fcc's nad neutrality rule. they are considering a bill that removes the epa's authority to
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regulate greenhouse gas emissions. and the federal government could shut down at midnight on friday. that could mean weekend sessions this weekend in congress. who will be covering their budget deliberations in the house on c-span, in the senate on c-span2 and act tonight on the communicators, fcc commissioner michael copps on the proposed merger. >> what troubles me is that this kind of sucks the oxygen out of so many issues pending before the federal communications commission. we can chew gum and walk at the same time, i guess, but this affects so much of what we are doing. >> the communicator's tonight on c-span2. white house press secretary jay
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carney today said president obama has invited congressional leaders to the white house tomorrow to discuss government funding for the rest of the year. the spending bill must be passed by midnight friday to avoid suspension of most government services. >> good afternoon. i want to begin with a couple of scheduling announcements or updates. updates. the president this week will make two trips as he continues speaking with americans about protecting consumers against rising oil prices. on wednesday, the president will travel to philadelphia to hold a town hall discussion with
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workers at the mesa technology corporations. this facility was built as a former u.s. fuel industrial side. on friday, the president will travel to minneapolis where he will tour the facilities before speaking to workers there. is a manufacturer of hybrid people shouldn't systems. in june of 2010, they announced the dedication of a new facility, which once fully operational will have the capacity to produce thousands of systems each year. i would like to inform you that earlier today invitations were extended to speaker banner,
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reid andajority leader rea how rodgers to the white house tomorrow to discuss measures to bring us to the end of this fiscal year. a significant progress has been made in agreeing that we can all work off the same number, $73 billion in spending cuts this year alone. with the process running short on time, the president will urge leaders to reach final agreement and avoid a government shutdown that will be harmful to our economic recovery. those are my announcements. i will take your questions. >> is the president still confident that congress can reach an agreement on the budget by friday and avoid a shutdown? >> he remains confident -- confident that if we together will our sleeves and get to work very quickly, that we can
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find a compromise that reduces spending by $73 billion, but projects investments that are so key to our future economic growth. yes, he believes it can be done, but time is of the essence and that is why he is calling this meeting for tomorrow and that is why he had to meetings over the weekend. >> and we have heard that the administration is going to try khalid shaikh mohammed at guantanamo bay and not your core virginia. now that the president is officially running for office again, how does he explain this reversal? >> as you know, the president's commitment here is this, those who are suspected and accused of participating in those heinous acts be brought to
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justice. that is his primary concern. for details on his position, i think you're going to hear from the attorney general at 2:00 p.m. today, who will have more to say about this. >> but in terms of the president going back on statements he made in 2008, of which you think that is going to be? >> i think the president's primary concern is that the perpetrators, the accused perpetrators of the terrible attack be brought to justice as swiftly and fairly as possible. >> there is progress, the president has said, but not enough for him. if the administration is even saying that, how can you expect people to award him with a
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reelection? >> the president is not focused on their election. >> but he is running for reelection. >> but he has a job and he is focused every morning with that in his mind -- foremost in his mind. what can he do to work with partners in the private-sector to increase growth and make america competitive so it can produce more in the 21st century. when he says he is not satisfied, of course he is not. there is more work to be done. progress is being made. congress is showing -- the economy is showing real signs of strength. we started off in a very deep hole. there's more work to be done and that is what the president is
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focused on. >> on khalid shaikh mohammed, it seems the you are debating that attorney-general -- >> what has been the stated clearly is that there is a need for justice. >> on the budget negotiation, the president is going an extra mile for, the talks. how can you talk about the the economic consequences of a government shutdown? -- can you talk about the economic consequences of a government shutdown?
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>> we are willing of our sleeves and working, including members of the white house administration, people on the hill. the president made peaceful calls and is calling this meeting or precisely because he is concerned that we need to reach a final agreement. time is of the essence. aboutt want to speculate the consequences of not getting this work done except to say that nobody believes that is good for the economy, that it is good for the kind of recovery that we have seen taking root to run a government in a way that stops and starts. the we need to get this work done. >> there has been quite a bit >> there has been quite a bit of talk done [unintelligible] and now it is that he must leave
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office. we are now concerned about and are monitoring the -- >> we are now concerned about and are monitoring the situation in yemen. it is important that all sides refrain from violence and that it addresses the aspirations of the yemeni people. we support a dialogue president sully has high indicated his desire for a peaceful transition. we urge that process to continue. >> the white house has repeatedly said that he is a key ally when it comes to fighting terrorism, especially al qaeda in the area. if the administration is now
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supporting a transition process in yemen, how confident is the white house and how concerned is the white house that whatever comes next will not be helpful to the united states or to the terrace? >> we are not focused on one person, nor should this be. our concern is that true political unrest, al qaeda and other groups who -- through political unrest, al qaeda and other groups will take a bandage about. -- take it advantage of. we're not focused on one individual. individual. >> yemen is of great concern to te
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united states. aqip is of great concern to me the united states. that is why we have partnered with those in the region and around the world in combat in the terrorist activities of aq ip. ip. >> now that is has been said that these trials will not happen in the united states, why is it that is happening now
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before the reelection? before the reelection? >> what i would ask you do is listen to what the attorney general has to say about this particular decision. and the president remains focused on doing everything he can do to get the economy growing and these are priority is he takes very seriously. >> in 2008 this was a big issue he brought up on the campaign trail. it is obviously a failure. >> i would say that, again, what has transpired over the last several years with regard to these issues is well known. the opposition created obstacles that became very hard to overcome.
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the president is very focused the president is very focused on the need for justice for those accused in participating in and letting those attacks. >> when it comes to the shutdown, as the white house preparing for a government shutdown? >> there is nothing unusual that this administration is doing with regard to the situation we are in now. i would not say bracing for. i would not say bracing for. the president and the white house believes there is ample room for getting this done. we believe very strongly that is what the american people want us to do and we take seriously the expressed sentiments of congressional leaders of both parties, that they believed that
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a government shutdown would not be good for the economy, for job creation, for the american people. with all of that work here and the fact that so much progress has been made toward an agreement, we believe we should get this done because there are bigger challenges that we need to work on together. honthere is still ample room for common ground to be found if people roll up their sleeves and get this work done. get this work done. >> is this the time to be rolling out a billion dollar campaign while many americans are struggling to stay in their homes and get jobs? >> this has been the worst
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recession since the great depression. a terrible job losses, a shrinking economy, collapse of the financial sector -- all these things were challenges he confronted when he took office and which he is addressing every day. that is the job that he is focusing on. the formal process of filing and announcements for a campaign, that is separate from the work he is doing your every day for the american people. >> i know you are kicking a lot of the questions to be 2:00 press announcement with the attorney general, but can you tell us why this is happening on the day when he is rolling out his 2012 campaign? >> this was determined by the justice department, so i would refer you to them, on the timing. >> has he had any conversations
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with attorney general holder about this recently? >> i think there has been a heads up and that sort of thing, but nothing substantive. >> on the potential shutdown, there are surveys that have shown there are still lot of people out there that are concerned about things like social security checks and whether going -- whether they are going to the doctors under medicare or medicaid. can you reassure people with regard to what will happen in regard to those kinds of programs? >> i do not want to speculate about what might happen when a scenario that we think can and will be avoided. >> you cannot guarantee it will not happen. >> i cannot guarantee a lot of things. >> what will happen if it does? >> there are circumstances
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becher could -- that could entail if an agreement is not reached. we have said it is not what we want. leaders of congress have said it is not what they want. it would be bad for a number of reasons, most importantly, it would have a negative impact on the economy and job growth in the future. >> you cannot even tell people, not to worry their social security checks will still go out. >> i do not want to discuss the various issues, when i do not
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have all the details. >> the president is about to launch what weight -- what may well be the most expensive election -- reelection bid in history. does this give him any pause at all? >> wendell, i will ask you to take those questions, for now, to the dnc, and then shortly to what will be the head can-week campaign headquarters in chicago. i do not have an answer for you. -- the campaign headquarters in chicago. i do not have an answer for you. >> if he is sharply criticized for this move, would he learned
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his lesson? his lesson? >> aitaof ackley or your a -- i do not know specifically what you're referring to. i would refer you to the campaign. >> is this going to be your response for everything? >> the answers to those questions can be found there. the president is focused on his work for the american people that he was elected to do and that is what he does every day and that is what his staff here is doing. the structure that is being set up for him in chicago is precisely to allow him to focus on the work that he is doing for the american people. there is a lot of work on his plate. and what is on his plate is also on our plate. >> is that why he announced
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today, a month earlier than his predecessor announced his reelection intentions? >> the timing of setting up, filing papers, you have people that are working on the campaign and involved in the process. the president today, over the weekend and this week and going forward will be focused on the work of his presidency because there are so many challenges facing us. >> did the attorney general consult with the president -- and one >> i do not have any specifics for you. i will take that question. >> meaning, you do not know?
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>> i do not know. >> does the president agree with the attorney general's decision? >> the answer is yes, but for details on that, maybe wait until after the attorney-general makes his statement. i will be taking your questions on this and other issues hamas but i do not want to get ahead -- and other issues, but i do not want to get ahead of the attorney-general. >> i'm wondering if his opinion has changed after is today. >> i would just point you to some of the answers i gave earlier. the president's primary concern here is that justice be served and that this process move forward, given the obstacles
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that are out there that we all know about. >> i think there is a one-shot of president obama in the whole deal. >> i would not draw any conclusions in the first week of april, 2011. the engagement is way down the road and the structures that are built to support that need to be bill because of the way these things unfold. but his focus is on the job that he was elected to do and there is a great deal on his plate and that is what he is focused on now. now. >> of wondering what your reaction is to the plans to turn medicare into one where
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individuals would get prepaid premiums to private companies. >> i have not seen it because it has not arrived. obviously, by as along with others will examine it with interest. the president has said in his state of the union address that he looks forward to engaging in a conversation, an adult conversation about the challenges that face us in our fiscal future, entitlement reform, defense spending, tax reform, the issues that really affect our long-term deficit and debt. i think it is important to note that the president himself has already put forward a 2012 budget that includes health care savings. prior to that, he passed legislation that addressed the need to address health care
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legislation. he recognizes this is an area of concern when it comes to our long-term fiscal health and he has shown seriousness about it. again, i do not want to prejudge mr. -- prejudge mr. ryan proposal propofol -- mr. .yan's proposal i think we can come together in a resultat can produce an that the american people can support. >> the fundamental concept behind what he wants to do with medicare has been around for a very long time, and in general, it is highly criticized by the bulk of the democratic party. are you suggesting that this is something you can work with?
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>> i am suggesting that as in the short-term budget discussions, the president shares the goal of cutting the budget and he shares the goal of addressing the issues that drive our debt and affect our fiscal health. how you get there is very important. he has shown concern about addressing the issues of the past and has shown serious about addressing them for the future. i do not want to negotiate for the particulars, except to say that the only way this process works is that there is something that all sides can agree on in substantial numbers. no single party is proposition -- no single party's proposition for entitlement reform or long-term fiscal health is ever going to become law because it needs the support
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of both parties and the president to get done. the issue is too big to handle it otherwise. >> i'm not even clear what that answer whether you support the proposal or not. this is a fundamental change to medicare. the crux i think the president's position -- >> i think the president's position on medicare can be seen in his affordable care act and the 2010 budget proposal. but beyond ideas that have very limited support in congress, they will not likely become law. we need to find solutions that can garner bipartisan support and we need a process that we see both sides come together calmly, willing to jettison, their maximalist positions because they know they will not
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get everything they want. >> how would you respond to people in the democratic party that will probably be disappointed with that response? >> this is a process that has not even begun yet and it is one where who -- i certainly do not want to prejudge the outcome of it today. i have said before and i think others have said before that if you stake out positions in your corners and that is your beginning and end position, you will never get to the center. the president believes in results. in foreign policy and domestic policy, he said his principles and believes in getting things done for the american people. -- he sets his principles and believes in getting things done for the american people.
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there should be common ground on these issues that are so important. >> can you further characterize this meeting tomorrow? is that a negotiating session, a knock heads meeting? >> what i said at the top is what i think the president wants to convey by issuing the invitation and having the meeting. it is a very good time for these senior leaders to come together. he looks for to the meeting because he believes we can do it. >> will they get into numbers? >> i do not want to prejudge the smart people who will be in the room, maybe some with calculators. but my guess is that this is more of a leadership discussion and not a line-item discussion
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-- does the -- a line item discussion. >> does the president believed that the holding these trials at guantanamo is a good idea? >> i am not going to start picking apart the announcement this afternoon. i will refer that to attorney- general holder. my understanding is that an analysis of that particular process is under way. >> the president set up a negotiating team to go to capitol hill and deal with budget issues. does the fact that the white
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house is getting involved, does that mean that the plan has not worked? >> the budget director, the president's liaison and others have been engaged. this is a step along the way. >> will have to push the ball over the finish line? >> you do not know how this will play out. you cannot gain id day-by-day or hour by hour. -- you cannot gauge it day-by- day or hour by hour. day or hour by hour. bhatia >> can i ask for a preview of the lunch tomorrow? >> the president looks bored to the lunch and discussing america's commitment to middle east security and progress on the peace process.
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>> are there other details that may unfold about amapola east right now? but he may have them, but i will let him announce them. >> as far as the military engagement in libya, what do they know that we do not know? >> our contact group is very much engaged in the process of assessing the opposition and helping them plan for, or assisting in advising the opera -- the opposition and planning for a post-gaddafi system. we believe it is in our national security interest in terms of due diligence in assessing the opposition and the kind of assistance we can provide to the
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opposition. >> is it not organized enough yet? does it scare us? >> i would say we are only days of -- well,n terms f weeks since the beginning of any unrest in libya at all. and only a little longer than that since the u.s. took action unilaterally and multilaterally with the sanctions and that sort of thing. going back to refrain i think you have heard from me and others, this process has moved very quickly. it is very fluid and dynamic. what it has not been is slow and overly deliberate. what's what is the president's position on giving the state of a seat?ne ac
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>> there are a lot of positions at the table. we encourage both sides to reengage in negotiations to revitalize a peace process that needs revitalization. but the elements of that i am not going to get into from here. >> does the united states not have a position? does the president not have a physician? >> i will not get into this was a bit. -- does the president not have a position? >> i will not get into specifics. as you know, because what president of israel is coming -- as you know, the president of israel is coming tomorrow. >> what assurances can you provide to the american people that his official at taxpayer funded itinerary will not be driven by a reelection considerations? >> i will tell you very clear
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that the president is focused on the work that he needs to do and all of the safeguards should be taken and will be taken with regard to that. there are a lot of states that were very important to the election in 2008. >> in the video that the dnc released this morning, one of the people -- one of the things that were mentioned that or left undone, i'm wondering what he thinks those are and when they will be done. >> but he has been in office for little over two years and has faced a collection of
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challenges that compare in their size and complexity to that by which any president has faced when coming into this office. and he has taken steps toward overcoming those enormous challenges. rebalancing our foreign policy and reestablish american leadership around the world, drawing down our troops in iraq -- 100,000 american troops have been drawn down from iraq -- and getting a policy toward afghanistan that can achieve our goals there. to suggest that all of the challenges that we faced when president obama was sworn into office are gone away is simply
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not true. the challenges continue. and we have the continued need for economic growth and job creation to help us compete in the 20% tree and win in the future. that is his principal -- in the 21st century and win in the future. that is his principal focus. >> is he going to be presenting these issues as things left undone and second term issues? >> i certainly do not think you could ever accuse this on bignt' of taking challenges in a slow way. i will cite that he remains committed to comprehensive immigration reform. it is the kind of thing, like some other challenges that i was
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talking about earlier, that requires bipartisan contempt -- consensus to get done. there was a history of bipartisan support on immigration reform and you will hear the president discussed that sooner rather than later. that sooner rather than later. >> [unintelligible] and the peacekeepers need to do their job. what more can the administration do? this contribution with everything happening in libya [unintelligible] >> i would point to the fact that the administration has taken a lot of measures and has led hot the international community in building a consensus against former
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president of boat and urging him to step down -- president bogbo and urging him to step down. and we have urged him to cease the violence out against the people of " deval ordaz -- cote devouir. cote devouir. >> will we hear from the president on this? >> the president addressed a video to the people of the country, not long ago.
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he has been very engaged in this very important issue and has made an unequivocal clear that he recognized elected president needs to -- of that country needs to assume power and the former president need to give up power. >> what is the sensitivity of this white house as it relates this white house as it relates with what it hopes for [unintelligible] they gave small amounts of money into these grass roots campaigns and a lot of these people are being pinched by the recession or one thing or another. >> we are not out of the hole that this recession of accurate
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it is continuing to grow and build -- that this recession built. it is continuing to grow and the president has said that he will continue to work until everyone has the opportunity to work. that is the focus of his work today. it is not related to a political campaign, but related to the job he was elected to do. >> do you think [unintelligible] in other words billion with a "b." >> i would refer that to the campaign headquarters in chicago for an hour.
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>> does the president have any plans to visit guantanamo any time soon? [laughter] >> be on the ones i made on his schedule -- beyond, the ones i made on his schedule. what ideas are being proposed as an interim alternative that would bar the federal government from doing business with companies? would the president be open to insuring this executive order? >> i do not want to say what action he may or may not take. his position is known, and again, he does not shy away from obstacles when he approaches an issue that is important to him. i will not speculate about what matters in he may take.
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>> 50 president open an executive order to ensure that lgbt members have access to medical insurance -- and on >> again, and he is closely monitoring that, but more than that i do not have. that i do not have. questions about legal impediments are best addressed to lawyers and i am not one. >> is there any thought of >> is there any thought of taking action against the church in florida that was burning the koran? >> number-one, with absolutely do not condone -- we absolutely do not condone that activity.
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and secondly, nothing justifies the kind of violence and actions that we saw as a result. our interest is not in elevating someone who's behavior does not represent what we believe our america's values. our focus relies on condemning that henin -- the heinous acts that took the lives of u.n. workers in afghanistan. >> does the president believes that americans have the right to burn the koran, as horrible as this? >> it is important to note that nothing justifies the reaction, absolutely nothing.
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>> there are reports out there that the administration is talking to bp about resuming the sea drilling. can you talk about that? how close are we to resuming deepwater drilling? but as i would like to point to something secretary salazar said this morning. there is nonor would there be sh agreement. there is nothing different. the simple fact is that everyone who wants to do business and drilling in either shallow or deep water needs to meet the stringent requirements that have been in place since the spill last year, and that includes every country, and permits are based on the capacity of the company to meet the requirements that those new standards have set, and, again, they do not
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make deals. the issue permits on the merits of the application. that would be true of any company. i would refer you to the department of interior and secretary salazar, but i think he is pretty darn clear. [laughter] one more. two more. two more. i cannot imagine what you are going to ask. [laughter] >> why has the president ordered support when note things are still so far from being achieved? >> they are not the sole u.s. military objectives. they are the objectives laid out by the u.n. security gives a resolution 1973, that is guiding the mission that nato now has
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commanding control over and is the leading authority, and the united states military is still participating in an advisory and support role, which continues to be important, intelligence gathering, jamming, refueling, and the like. i will tell you, because there are ports of it, the kinetic participation of the military was extended several days until midnight tonight because of the weather that affected the ability of the united states assets to hit the targets that had been laid out for it to hit, which we have the unique capabilities of hitting, to use the colloquial language, but as of midnight tonight, they will no longer be in that role, but our partnership in the coalition continues, in the nato will continue to fly sorties and take action as it continues -- and
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nato will continue. as i understand it, the details are probably better spoken to by nato or the department of defense, but the delay was driven by a set of targets that driven by a set of targets that we could deal with and that the added time was allowed for the weather to clear and for them to be dealt with, and we are now in the process as of midnight tonight of pulling back those assets, and we are taking on that role that we discussed of participating in the coalition but not leading it. >> thank you very much. a governor filed a motion for requesting something from obama 2008 with the fbi be given to
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them. any objection to the fbi interview before the upcoming blagojevich re-trail? a letter that guantanamo s, andee is -- detainee' would probably take away a roadblock. can you give me a status report? >> again, i have to take the question in both cases. i do not have answers for either. >> do you think you can get an answer today? >> i will check with my office. one more. yes, sir.
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>> where is the goal the president is thinking of? >> did you say a second term? it is not related to that. i think tom very eloquently spelled out in a speech or an interview, i can remember, about the approach the president took when he took office to rebalance our priorities in foreign policy and to take into account the emergence of countries like china and india and brazil and the way we look strategically at the world and not to focus solely on one or two regions. more broadly, i think often he came in determined to reestablish american leadership, america's standing in the world, and great progress has been made in that regard, as well. thank you very much. [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2011] [captioning performed by
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national captioning institute] >> the house came back into session today to start the week. members are in recess now. earlier today, they debated a bill that would cut 10% from the pentagon printing budget. members will return at 6:30 eastern to vote on that bill. later this week, members will consider repealing the net neutrality roles as well as a measure to prohibit the fda, the epa from regulating greenhouse gas emissions. work continues off of the four to come to an agreement on the fiscal year 2011 federal spending to avoid a government shutdown. current government spending runs out on friday. as always, live coverage on c- span with coverage on our
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companion network, c-span2. in on c-span3, a speaker at the american enterprise institute discussing what he calls the state of white america. that starts at 5:30 p.m. eastern. again, that is on c-span3. >> tonight on "the communicators," fcc chairman michael cox on the at&t and t- mobile merger. >> what bothers me is this sort of sucks the oxygen out of so many of the issues that are pending before the federal communications commission. you know, we can chew gum and walk at the same time, but this affects so much of what we're doing. >> "the communicators," tonight on c-span2. >> a former u.s. ambassador to israel says the best way to have a surviving is real estate is to allow a palestinian state based on 1957 lines. he was one of the speakers on a
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panel discussing political unrest at a conference hosted by the anti-defamation league in washington. he said support for israel is beginning to fray across the world, which could prompt the u.n. to go ahead with a vote in september to recognize a palestinian state. this is about one hour. there are seismic changes, and it is agreed that these peacenik initiations have not advanced in a way that the administration had hoped and that efforts to invigorate israeli-palestinian negotiations have at times tested the israeli-u.s. relationship. we are privileged to have with
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us this morning three experts, each with a unique, first and perspective on the american middle east policy. these veterans will share their views of the challenges facing the administration and their vision for the best way forward in the quest for arab-israeli peace and for stability in the region. martin is director for foreign policy at the brookings institution and senior adviser to a special envoy for middle east peace, george mitchell. the investor was a principal advisor on middle east peacemaking in the clinton administration, as senior director of near east and south asian affairs at the national security council. his state department posts included two tours as u.s. ambassador to israel and service as assistant secretary of state for near east affairs.
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before entering government services, the ambassador sir for eight years of the founding executive director of the washington institute for near east policy. as deputy editorial page editor of "the washington post, his columns have been required reading for those interested in the inner workings of the american strategy in the middle east and u.s.-israel relations. he reported on the wrist from jerusalem and has covered latin american and eastern european politics from buenos aires and warsaw. elliott abrams has served as deputy directory -- director for global democracy strategy to president george w. bush and held the positions of senior director for democracy and human
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rights and senior director for the near east in the bush white house. his diplomatic posts include assistant secretary of state for international organizations, which covers the united nations, said assistant secretary of state for thuman rights and humanitarian affairs. mr. abrams is an expert on u.s. policy in the middle east, israeli-palestinian affairs, democracy promotion, human rights policy, and u.s. foreign policy. we are grateful to have with us in washington bureau chief of the jewish telegraphic agency and an astute reporter, who has more out a lot of shoe leather covering these issues in the halls, covering them day in and day out. he will give the four to each of our panelists to open with a few remarks and then engage our panelists in a discussion before he opens it up to questions from
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the audience. i would like to thank all three of you for honoring the adl by taking time to be with us this morning. [applause] >> as was said, we are going to start with about five minutes from each of the panelists, and then we will go to responses, and it will not be a debate because they all agree with one another, and then we will open it up further. what do we not start with martin? >> thank you, ron. i want to thank adl for having this meeting, and eliot and i were having an argument in the seats, and it shows you how far we have come.
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what is happening in the arab world today is profound and deeply consequential for the challenge that israel faces in terms of trying to achieve a two-state solution and a comprehensive peace. i think we have to start with what is happening around israel, and there, the change that is sweeping across the arab world, which as dennis pointed out, nobody ever predicted that this was going to happen. none of my predictions have ever proven true. [laughter]
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but i am confident of one thing, that there is not one arab country that will not be touched by what is happening, and what is interesting if you look at it from the point of view of the impact it has on israel and the impact on peacemaking is that the demonstrators on the street are not burning israeli flags. they are not raising the banner of palestine. they are focused intently on bringing their governments to account and achieving freedom and accountable government, free and fair elections, democracy. that does not mean that they will not come around to the palestine issue, and one should
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not be complacent about that. authoritarian arab governments deflect from the issues that they are no demonstrating about, but it is not as if they do not have an impact on public opinion in doing so. it is just that they have more important issues at the moment, so the public more responsive to the will of the people could be well focusing again on this issue, but that could take some time. in the meantime, not only are the arabs preoccupied, but the united states government, the obama administration, is
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preoccupied with dealing with the consequences with the foundation stones of our strategic positions in the arab world and the persian gulf in particular. we are today in the midst of a quiet but fairly profound crisis in the relationships between the united states and saudi arabia, and i have got news for you, it is not about israel. and we are also preoccupied with what i consider to be the situation in libya, and then there is egypt, strategically the most informed for the united states. what happens in egypt will have profound consequences for american interests in the region, and so the administration simply does not have the bandwidth to deal with
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trying to promote israeli- palestinian peace in this context. by the way, the potential of the last five years was peace between israel and syria. i am sorry. ah. the leader in syria responding to the demands of their people with the tyranny of the syrian baath party the consequences of all of this is that the palestinians and israelis, and
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probably for the first time in their existence, are left to their own devices. it would be a good thing in my point of viewael's if it sought to resolve conflict with the palestinians now while the rest of the arab world is not watching, while the united states is preoccupied. it is very clear that time is not on israel's side. the clock is ticking. you did not have to read yesterday's new york times article about declaring palestine in state and to put israel in the position of being an occupying power under international law and subject to u.n. sanctions if the united states were ever to allow that
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to happen, but it any case, pressure is clearly building, and so i want to finish on that point. it would, i think, benefit israel now to take the prospect of trying to resolve the issues between israel and the palestinians while it has time and while the rest of the world is not watching. >> thanks very much, ron. it is very much an honor to be here, and i thank adl for inviting me. sandwiched between these two guys, i feel like i am the buffer zone korea they are smarter and generally more distinguished than i am, and older, i should point out. [laughter] so i am going to try and be quick, but i am also going to
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try to be more provocative than they are, because unlike them, i do not have to worry too much about some according what i have to say [laughter] and i will focus on the obama administration, the weaknesses of this and administration and this president, which are to and raise conventional thinking of foreign affairs and to be too cautious in responding to the opportunities that come along. i think this goes back to the beginning. i think obama began with a very outdated in conventional view of the middle east, which accepts arab meritocracies pretty much at face value, adopting the idea that change was impossible, and define the arab-israeli conflict as the central issue in the region from which all of the
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problems low. i think this has affected the american view of the region, but i think it is particularly unfortunate because the bush administration had made the conceptual breakthrough after 9/11 in saying that the arab- israeli conflict was not the central issue, but it was autocratic regimes and the american support for them, which was destabilizing rather than stabilizing over time. now, the bush administration did not pursue this philosophy to the end, and they lost their nerve, but they understood the region differently. so the obama administration started by making the mistake of going back to the old philosophy, and as a result, they were completely taken by surprise by this uprising. ya of course, no one predicted exactly what we are seeing now, but there were many people in washington for a long time who had been saying that the status quo was untenable. there is a whole group, including air it -- elliott, and
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for one year was telling the administration that change was inevitable in egypt and that they had to get ready for it, and for the most part, the administration did not listen, and in every country where the change has exploded, the administration's initial impulse is to resist the idea that change is inevitable or even desirable, and dennis quoted obama as saying you cannot allow yourself to get behind the curve, and yet, we seem to be behind the curve in almost every crisis that has occurred. hillary clinton said the egyptian government was stable. when the libyan crisis erupted, president obama was the last major western leader to make a statement criticizing gaddafi and saying he had to go, and when the syrian crisis erupted, the first public statement we had from the secretary of state was to say about him -- that
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assad is a reformer, so what worries me now is that the u.s. will not do enough to embrace the change, and then it will slip back into the old ways of seeing the region, again, in which the arab-israeli issue is defined as central. in support, i am worried that obama is going to be too ambitious on the middle east peace process and not ambitious enough in reform. libya. i think obama did the right thing and decided to intervene in libya, but he is doing it, i'm afraid, in what amounts to a penny wise and pound foolish way. he is defining almost exclusively as being a humanitarian one, preventing a massacre, and not enough as far as contributing to essential change. i think it is essential that gaddafi should not be allowed to massacre his way out of this.
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others will take this as an example, so it is vital that we stop this, and yet, the administration approach is to intervene but to restrict our effort and to ground airplanes over the weekend, and it could korea a stairway that over time will only draws backing in a bigger way, and by not decisively acting to move against gaddafi now, i think we are inviting the consequences we are worried about, radicalizing the opposition, and giving a place for al qaeda, giving a place what hillary clinton want herself could be a somalia. yet the situation i am worried about is syria, where, again, we started by calling assad a reformer, and there has been an egg d.l. in washington to cling to this idea that we can talk the syrian regime into transforming itself with
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breaking its alliance with iran and being cooperative and making peace with israel. i think the last two weeks ought to have shown us that those ideas were a complete illusion, and we need to move on from that. i think there are legitimate reasons to worry about what can happen if the syrian regime were overturned. it is a messy country, a lot of ethnicities, but it is hard to imagine we could end up in a worse situation than we are now. any major change in syria is likely to lead to a rise of a regime that would be led by sumy's, less friendly to iran, that would inevitably be less friendly to hizbollah, so it seems to be the logical policy here is to address those who are trying to bring about change and to do our best to support them rather than to talk about assad, the reformer. lastly, i want to come to the
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israeli issue. this seems to be at the end of each crisis, whether it was the first gulf war or the iraq war, where everyone was turning their attention to in the israelis and palestinians, saying we have to stop this conflict once and for all, and it is coming in september, when i think the palestinians are going to go to the general assembly and seek recognition. the obama administration i think you could say it is engaged in some defense and diplomacy korea it is under pressure, to korea from european states, who i think our series the considering in gracing this palestinian situation and which would put the united states and israel in a very difficult situation, and then the question is, how do you manage it? do you insist that there be very good progress with settlement, which is some of what we're hearing from the administration so far. it is what we heard from secretary gates when he was an tel aviv the week before last,
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as an example, and again, i think that returns to an unrealistic way of thinking about the situation. i think it will be less likely that we move forward, much as everyone would like, in the next amount of time that has been the last three. we have all the elements that impede progress before, including leaders on both sides, who lack the political bases internally to push through the big changes, and now we have the additional element of enormous uncertainty of who are going to be the neighbors of israel? who are going to be the leaders in egypt one year from now? what will be their attitude about the peace process? who will be the leaders even in jordan one year from now? i think the idea that during the course of that year, even while no one is looking, the israelis and palestinians ending this conflict that is widely unrealistic, and my concern is the administration is once again
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going to focus on doing that and not enough of its ambition and taking advantage of this enormous opportunity they have in the rest of the arab world. >> thank you. let me just begin by saying to jackson what ronald reagan once said to walter mondale. we are not going to hold your youth and inexperience against you. [laughter] i have two problems in following the previous two speakers. i apologize, i should be in bed, probably drinking tea. the second is, i agree with both of them. in almost everything that was said. but i would like to put a little twist on the israeli-palestinian part. i was in israel 10 days ago, and it seems to me that the government is frozen, trying to figure out what to do, given the
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various pressures that are emerging, some of them the arab revolt, in jordan looked different, lebanon, egypt. part of israeli politics is difficult. as they try to figure out what initiatives they may take diplomatically, he has the same problems that ariel sharon had, which is a fractious coalition, more difficult in a way because he created something, so some of the more centrist elements are not there anymore. it is in that sense more or right wing than it was. he had another great advantage, frankly, in as he thought about taking risks, in that he was certain that the united states
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had his back. you heard dennis j. that the u.s.-israel military cooperation is as good or better than it has been. i think that is right. i think the administration should get credit for that. i think it is excellent, but the diplomatic cooperation is for. we have seen event in the united nations that we have not seen for some time, including, for example, the last beto, which should have been easy as pie but which was fought over in the demonstration and which was followed by a disgusting speech on behalf of susan rice, our u.n. ambassador, which adopted the view of those in favor of the veto. and they blame the settlements for everything. what i do think is that the israelis of to do something. that sounds like an easy thing to do. what i do not like to see is to
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see israel sitting there, fretting about the changes in the arab world, fretting about washington, fretting about new york, worried about what others will do, and then doing nothing. it is a very broad consensus in israel that they need to separate from the palestinians, very broad. i mean, it crumbly is 90%, or maybe it is even higher today. if you think you ought to separate from the palestinians, why did you not separate from the palestinians? i am talking about the west bank. i am talking about the beginning of moves that would lead to the result that the israelis want or are resigned to, which is they're going to be out of most of the west bank at some point. maybe the idea will not be out of all of the west bank, but the vast majority of the settlers are going to have to move at
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some point. i think israel would get an enormous amount of credit diplomatically if it took any steps to move it toward its goal that it seeks. just give you one example. passing compensation lot in the knesset but says any settler beyond the fence who wishes to move back behind the fence in what we will call green line is real or a major bloc, the everyone knows israel is going to keep, the government will purchase your home, because i think there are a fair number of people in those outlying areas who would move back but cannot for financial reasons. i think we need to get past the notion that supporting the palestinians is a favor that israel does for the palestinians. it is not. it is the conclusion, i think, that most israelis have reached. to put it in one line, they are
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not going to live in peace with the palestinians, but they can live in peace apart from the palestinians, so the question i asked myself is if that is the end result, and three prime ministers in a row, including netanyahu, have looked at this result, why is it not possible to take the smallest step in that direction? not just for the diplomatic benefit that may accrue in washington or new york or london or berlin, but because this is the direction that israel says it needs to go in. you know, the zionists did not create israel by waiting for help from others. they certainly look for help from others, and they got some, but basically, they acted, and that has been the history of the zionist movement and the history of israel since 1948, to act to
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advance its interests. i myself have a home in the middle east. actions israel can take, rather than waiting, waiting for the israelis to make a mistake, waiting for the international community to do things that are right or wrong, but steps that israel can take in its own interests. thank you. >> martin, is a wildly unrealistic to expect the israelis and the palestinians to go off to the side and write some sort of an agreement could >> probably. i am not sure, did everybody here the question could is unrealistic to expect the israelis and the palestinians to go off and make a deal? in many ways, the best way for them to do it is quietly, and they certainly have ways of
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doing that. the short ride from jerusalem, the prime minister's residence. charge.really jackson's i am not suggesting the united states' focus on that. i think he is right that the obama administration needs to focus on what is happening in the arab world, and it would be a mistake to imagine some now we can stabilize our own situation and give voice to our values in terms of the demands for change in the arab world by somehow trying to resolve the israeli- palestinian conflict, but when others are diverted, it becomes easier, not more difficult, for the israelis and palestinians to
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engage without the external pressure, without having to game washington in order to get the united states on your side. so i think basically elliott and i are in agreement that this would be a good time for the israeli government to take the initiative, and what i fear is the problem with the palestinian leadership is that they do not believe that netanyahu is serious. this is highly disruptive in terms of the u.n. trying to israel in a corner, and i am afraid that will actually lead to a deterioration of the situation as israel moves to retaliate against palestinians for the isolation that israel is suffering, so it is really a
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question of sitting down quietly and figuring out how to do this, and if they do not saying, they could give it up and say, "we are handled -- handing over the keys to israel. you handle it." for all of these reasons, it just makes sense for israel to sit down with people who want to make a deal and do it. >> i am just going to grab the microphone on the way back to elliott. you make an excellent point. this would be a great moment to go off and talk to each other. they probably have an enormous level of distrust between this group of palestinian and israeli leaders, and having talked to
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both of them, i think the palestinian leadership has been convinced from the beginning that many of you is simply not somebody they can work with and is simply a waste of time to talk to, and their best reggie for dealing with them is to allow the united states and israel to get into a fight and for him to be forced out, which is their view of what happened in the 1990's, so why not just let that happen again? i think finds it easier to go to the united nations. i have not seen any indication that he has been prepared to do that. and netanyahu, for his part, he does not think about -- that
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abbas will not be able to do anything. in the 1990's, they did go off and talk to each other before oslo. i think eliot was talking about something which was israel does something unilaterally to change the situation for the better, and i guess i would just add, that is still workable. i feel that the israelis took the lesson, or certainly netanyahu took a lesson that doing that in gaza was a mistake because of what happened in gaza, and the reason they dropped the idea of doing that in the west bank and that they do not want to see a repeat of what they sought in gaza, where they have a takeover of hamas and have another ministate on their border. why would they contemplate such a thing given what happened in gaza >> that is the right
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question. i do not been these are compromises that mahmoud abbas can make. on the israeli side, it would be to get a coalition. i might be wrong, but my read on these groups is that for two years into the netanyahu government, she is thinking about being his successor and not his foreign minister, and i wonder if he -- if she would really join the coalition. the answer i think your question, jackson, -- the difference between what ariel sharon did in gaza and the thought that i had is the settlers in outlying settlements that are not possibly going to survive as part of israel would move back, but it would not be
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involved in the entire west bank, so you would not have another gossip. >> that came up in a book about condoleezza rice, and according to the book, condoleezza rice over world ariel sharon. you talked to jackson about this and illustrations approach to syria and about the idea that it is inevitably about replacing it with a sunni elite, and that would distance itself probably from iran, but in 2005, this outlines the possibilities for the bush administration with syria, and none of them were good. they were less happy with the prospects about what would
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replace assad about the security they have had in the golan heights and what they have been able to negotiate with bashar. why would change now be more salutary than it was in 2005? >> well, of course, none of us really understands what might happen in syria, which makes me eminently qualified to speak about it. [laughter] i think, first of all, one character is to of the israeli government is that they do not like change anywhere around them for whatever reason, and they are too conservative in that respect. i think it is shortsighted of israel -- they are the ultimate hyper realists. preferring a dictatorship allied with iran to any change whatsoever, and yet, things can
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go wrong. will it be worse than a dictatorship aligned with iran that is pursuing nuclear weapons, has a stockpile, and gives missiles to your enemy? i just do not see it. what is different is the arrival of the young arab generation that dennis was talking about. relatively educated, restless youth, middle class, who want their countries to join the 21st century and to become democratic, global, with free market economies. that class also exists in syria. you can find them in damascus. they are there. while we do not know what will happen, i think it is possible, they will be the ones to end up on top of any change that happens there. >> elliott, when you were
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outlining a proposal to consider, my mind started going forward a little bit, and i was imagining the outlying settlements, and then there is an argument about whether they would get compensation or rise up and object, and thinking about that, prime minister netanyahu gave a speech a few weeks ago in which she talked about the events going on in the least, and he talked about how israel could control these events, and this hands at what you were talking about. having to persuade prime minister netanyahu that he can advance -- obviously, he cannot control, nobody has control over events outside of the country, but he can influence events. >> it is very difficult because you have got these political factors in washington and jerusalem.
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there is a great deal of distrust between president obama and prime minister netanyahu. there is no friendship. there is no trust. it is a fact. it is unfortunate for them and us. as the prime minister starts thinking about, what can i do, and what chances can i take? i think the nine states could say to them, "look. if you are thinking of any proactive position, talk to us about but -- about it, and let us see if we can get behind it to see if we can support it, wrote to stand behind you, to get your back." if united states is strongly in favor of a proposal, it can put pressure to get behind it, as well, so they do not seem to be moving to the right. it is very difficult.
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if i were betting, i would bet that prime minister not now will not take a kind of exciting initiative. maybe a month ago or three weeks ago, there was talk of another speech which could be given year were given in israel. he does not talk about it anymore. the idea of a major speech seems to have been withdrawn, because the israelis are not quite sure that there is a major step taken here. it does seem to me, and here, martin and i are in agreement, this is a moment where boldness on the part of these israelis would be, i think, significant. the compensation is one idea. yes, they can all move to the right side of the fence or the western side of the fence, and it would be good to strengthen the area. but there are other things that
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the israelis to do. here is an example. many of you may not like it. so peru and chilly and argentina have recognized the palestinian state. -- peru and chile and argentina have recognized the palestinian state. does israel recognize syria? i do not know. they have been in a state of war since israel was created. israel recognizes that syria is there, for sure, so i do not think the idea -- fine, you are a palestinian state. i do not think that is an idea that should be discarded. i was reading allan baker's recent and extremely persuasive foreign ministry arguments against it, but it seems to me,
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you know, the quartet says there should be a state, '67 borders. one of israel says, "we are all in agreement"? we now recognize the palestinian state. it is a state whose borders are in determinant in which with we have grave border disputes which should now be negotiated. i do not understand how that is an advantage compared to the position they could be in september anyway. that is what i mean when thinking about what should the israelis do. they can get ahead of the curve. i think the israelis need to get ahead of the curve, too. >> ok, marquez urgent things to do, and jackson and i being journalists have nothing urgent to do, so i want to open nikola
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to the floor. >> good morning, i am bob, from new york. dennis said a wonderful it is that the young people are spurring these revolutions across the middle east. my concern is if you look at egypt right now, the young people are not in the forefront of who is going to control egypt going forward. they seem to have been marginalized by the muslim brotherhood or worse. so my question is, is it still not -- still realistic to look at egypt and to be optimistic that egypt down the road will be a democratic, youth oriented, it used driven area?
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>> look, there is plenty of reason to be concerned about where this is going. we have seen revolution hijacked in the past. going back to the iranian revolution and what happened there, but following what is happening in egypt, i do think there is reason for optimism. yes, the youth and the broad support that they have among sector forces in egypt were concerned about the way in which the military and the muslim brotherhood seem to be doing things at their expense, forcing through a referendum without serious constitutional changes, calling for elections in june, which would give them very little time to organize,
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the national democratic party of mubarak, the bested is to take of the earliest elections, and what we have seen and that they came out into the streets in force on friday. they postponed the elections until september. and the muslim brotherhood, being in kind of cahoots with the military, had stayed out of the demonstration on friday, and they have now seen what the youthful forces could do in terms of mobilizing people. they have gone back into the streets. so it may be -- it is a fluid situation, but it may be that the youth were able to split this alliance that is being forged. it is in a great state of flux,
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and we should not assume that the worst case is going to happen, and there is some very important things that the u.s. and our european allies can do to help organize politically, to help insure that when a new government is formed the muslim rettenmund, it seems they are playing the long game. for the sake of the moderate forces -- we have got to be laying the groundwork now to make sure, because it is going to have to turn around and meet the heightened economic expectations of the people, particularly the young, and
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tourism has stopped. a lot are in jail because they were associated with the mubarak regime. it is going to be a huge challenge. i think, yes, it is a scary situation, but it is also exhilarating, and there is a lot of opportunity there, and we have to have courage in supporting them. >> briefly, it is way too early to know who is the strongest force in egypt. one thing that struck me about the referendum is you have the youth telling people they should reject what is in essence very good constitutional reforms. they have no media, no organization, two weeks to prepare, and they got 40% of the vote in cairo, so now, they have until september. >> another question from the
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floor. >> my impression is that this is more about what the reformers or the youth do not want than it is what they do want, and i wonder what your thoughts are about that. >> there is third billion element of rejection, but there is a lot to reject. people are saying is the end of the myth of arab exceptionalism. people are saying, "no, we do not want censorship of the press. we do not want political prisoners. we do not want stolen government for a corrupt government." now, the arabs are objecting -- rejecting all of that. they say they want to have a decent government.
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so i think you are right in saying that they are a lot clearer on what they are rejecting them what they are for, but i agree. i think it is much too soon to be pessimistic about where this will lead. it will lead to the ups and downs. some countries will do a lot better than others. some places will look smooth, and other places will be difficult. there is no question about that. i am struck about what is gone is the fake republics, tunisia, egypt, libya, yemen. hopefully, syria. they have a much better shot in as they have a greater degree of legitimacy. in kuwait, the ruling family is trying to stay ahead of the curve, and whether they will make it or not, that remains to be seen.
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>> another question sir? >> michael from chicago. i would like to talk about libya briefly, or i would like you to talk about libya briefly. you do not want to hear me talk about it. some questions and concerns about the composition of those participating in the rebellion, that we do not really have a good sense of which groups are involved, then they are, who they are beholden to, if anybody, and if you have anything you can share on that, i appreciate it. >> al qaeda, the kind of north african branch of al qaeda, does have offices in libya, and there is a potential for that forced
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to grow considerably in the chaos that exists in libya today. a lot of libyans were trained by al qaeda in afghanistan. indeed, the relationship between the united states and gaddafi was built in part on cooperation against those very elements. we had a common enemy. ironic to think about it. if there is a potential there, it is one of the reasons why the obama administration is hesitant to get into the game of arming the rebels, because of this concern that we have been there before when we were after the taliban, and then we had to worry about these dinners coming
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back to be used against americans, said the concern is this. it has to be thought out carefully. a prolonged situation of chaos would definitely advantage al qaeda. but that does not have to be the outcome in libya. the real question is whether it becomes possible either to get gaddafi out quickly, in which case a reconciliation process with institutions of government and control that would prevent al qaeda from taking control of the situation -- or that you would have at least the opposition forces with the support of the coalition, able to build their capabilities, train their forces, and in the process be able to control their territory and prevent a tsunami- like situation.
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>> let me ask a question about bahrain. how do you get above the situation when they are so invested in the government? >> i worry a lot about the situation in bahrain getting away from us. the other underlying situation, obviously, the cindy monarchy, she population. you played the shias and i'll play the sunnis, what we can switch. the situation cannot be one where all power is in the hands of the ruling power and zero is in the hands of the population. ju


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