tv Democracy Now LINKTV December 17, 2018 4:00pm-5:01pm PST
12/17/18 12/17/18 [captioning made possible by democracy now!] amy: from new york, this is democracy now! a terrible human being. amy: "trump is a terrible human being." those are the words of mick mulvaney, the man trump has chosen to be his new chief of staff. we will speak to former presidential candidate ralph nader about mulvaney, the resignation of interior secretary ryan zinke, the
possible christmas government shutdown over the border wall, and the future of obamacare after a conservative judge rules it to be unconstitutional. plus, we will talk to nader about his new book "to the ramparts: how bush and obama paved the way for the trump presidency and why it isn't too late to reverse course." >> there is a huge conservative liberal support for a higher minimum wage. there is a lot of conservative support for full medicare to all. they do not want their health care claims denied arbitrarily, etc. there is big support for corporate crime enforcement. have wovents could this into an unstoppable political force. amy: then "from arizona to yemen: the journey of an american bomb."
we will look at how a bomb built by raytheon in tucson was used by saudi arabia to killed 31 yemeni civilians. all that and more, coming up. welcome to democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. delegates from nearly 200 countries agreed to a united nations deal on climate change that seeks to keep global temperatures from rising by more than 1.5 degrees celsius, or 2.7 degrees fahrenheit. the deal, brokered in a marathon session as two weeks of climate negotiation's came to an end in katowice, poland. set the rulebook on how to implement the 2015 paris climate agreement. jennifer morgan welcomed the outcome as an important step in said country still have to do far more to prevent the worst effects of catastrophic climate catastrophe. folks on this rulebook, i think that is a solid outcome.
basically, what you now have is all countries, the u.s., china, europe, you know, south africa, etc., have accepted binding rules and common roles to report and review what they are doing. and that is important. but that doesn't substitute for the need to build ambition and a say, ok, we get it. we're going to go and increase our ambition because it is really the very existence of islands that people are at stake care. amy: democracy now! was at the u.n. talks in katowice all last week. you can see our coverage at democracynow.org. president trump has ordered interior secretary ryan zinke to step down by the end of the year. his resignation came at least 17 investigations into his suspected ethics violations and corruption, including at least one justice department probe that could result in criminal charges. during his less than two years
at the interior department, zinke presided over the largest rollback of protections to federal land and u.s. history and opened up vast swaths of u.s. coastal waters to oil and gas illing. trump is expected to name zinke's deputy, david bernhardt, as acting interior secretary. bernhardt is a former fossil fuel and water industry lobbyist who played a key role in weakening endangered species protections to allow for new oil and gas drilling in western states. president trump has chosen mick mulvaney to replace john kelly who is set to step down in january amidst friction with trump and growing chaos in the white house. mulvaney's promotion came as the daily beast website obtained a video, recorded in 2016, of then-congressperson mick mulvaney calling donald trump a terrible human being. >> [indiscernible] i think he is a terrible human being.
amy: mulvaney also said trump had said disgusting and indefensible things about women in a 2005 "access hollywood" tape and made similar comments on social media that he later deleted after he joined the trump administration. in texas, a federal court has declared the affordable care act unconstitutional, setting up a likely challenge to president obama's signature health care law at the supreme court. federal district court judge reed o'connor, a george w. bush nominee, ruled friday that the aca's individual health insurance mandate violates the constitution, which invalidates the entire law. speaking at a congressional ball saturday night, president trump hailed the ruling. pres. trump: i believe we are going to get really good health care. exciting things happen over the last 24 hours. amy: the ruling is a victory for the 18 republican state attorneys general and two republican governors who are challenging the aca, but the law will remain in effect as the ruling is appealed. white house senior adviser stephen miller said sunday that
president trump is prepared to shut down the government if democrats don't provide billions of dollars to build an expanded wall on the u.s.-mexico border. miller was speaking with margaret brennan of cbs's "face the nation." >> we are going to do whatever is necessary to build a border wall to stop this ongoing crisis of illegal immigration. this is a very-- fundamental issue. at stake is the question of whether or not the united states remains a sovereign country. amy: a government shutdown could see more than 600,000 federal workers furloughed without pay just ahead of the christmas holiday. this comes as the family of a seven-year-old indigenous guatemalan girl who died on december 8 while in the custody of the u.s. border patrol demands answers. jakelin caal maquin died of shock from sepsis after she and her father were detained in a remote part of new mexico. border patrol agents only brought the girl to the hospital
after her body temperature spiked to over 105 degrees. this is ruben garcia, an immigrant rights activist and director of the annunciation house in el paso, texas. >> the family is seeking an objective and thorough investigation and are asking that investigators will assist -- ss this incident within nationally recognized standards for the arrest and custody of children. amy: on friday, the inspector general of the department of homeland security promised to investigate the death. this comes as new data show the trump administration continues to increase the number of arrests and deportations of immigrants. during the 2018 fiscal year that ended in september, the u.s. deported more than a quarter-million people, a 13% increase over a year before. even so, the pace of deportations in 2018 was only about half of the record pace set under president obama. the president's former personal
attending -- attorney and fixer michael cohen told nbc news -- abc news that donald trump directed him in 2016 to make illegal payments to two women who alleged they had sexual affairs with trump. cohen's interview with george stephanopoulos was recorded one day after cohen was sentenced to three years in prison for tax evasion, bank fraud, and lying to congress; and after cohen admitted he broke federal campaign finance laws by paying hush money to adult film star stormy daniels and former playboy model karen mcdougal during the 2016 campaign. >> he directed me to make the payments. he directed me to become involved in these matters, including the one with macdougal , which was really beten him and david pecker and david pecker's lawyer. i gave loyalty to someone who truthfully does not deserve loyalty. >> he was try to hide what you are doing, correct? >> correct. >> and he knew it was wrong? >> of course.
amy: president trump lashed out at cohen once again on twitter on sunday, tweeting -- "michael cohen only became a 'rat' after the fbi broke into an attorney's office!" the president's personal lawyer rudy giuliani said sunday that donald trump pursued discussions about building a skyscraper in moscow until november of 2016, far later than previously known. giuliani told abc's "this week" that trump made the admission in written responses he submitted to investigators with special counsel robert mueller's team. the admission directly contradicts president trump's claim in 2017 that -- "i have nothing to do with russia. haven't made a phone call to russia in years." in medical news, the u.s. pharmaceutical giant johnson & johnson knew for decades that some of its talcum pder contained dangerous levels of asbestos but covered up its findings about the deadly carcinogen. that's according to an investigation by the reuters news agency, which found documents showing the company knew about traces of asbestos in some of its baby powder early as 1971. the news sent share prices of
johnson & johnson plungingy 10% on friday. the report came as johnson & johnson faces thousands of lawsuits claiming its talcum powder led to cancer. president trump tweeted sunday that he would review the case of major matt golsteyn, who's been charged with premeditated murder. after golsteyn told the cia in 2011 that he killed an afghan man he suspected of being a bomb maker in 2010, the military reprimanded him but did not press murder charges. but after golsteyn admitted to the killing in a 2016 interview on fox news, the army reopened an investigation and recently charged him with murder. on president trump tweeted -- sunday, "at the request of many, i will be reviewing the case of a 'u.s. military hero,' major matt golsteyn." legal experts say the president's tweet threatens to undermine an ongoing criminal prosecution. in wisconsin, outgoing
republican governor scott walker has signed legislation that limits the power of the incoming democratic governor and attorney general-elect, while rolling back early voting in future elections. democrats have blasted the power grab as a legislative coup and say they'll sue to have the laws overturned. wisconsin senator tammy baldwin called the republican move "a craven partisan attack on democracy." and in los angeles, an estimated 50,000 teachers and other public school workers marched to city hall saturday, demanding better pay and more resources for students and classrooms. united teachers los angeles says its members are prepared to strike in january unless city officials meet their demands for smaller class sizes, more libraries, fewer standardized tests, and more teacher input in local school leadership councils. and those are some of the headlines. this is democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. it has been another tumultuous few days for the trump administration as president trump threatens to shut down the federal government over funding
for a border wall. there have been some shakeups in the trump white house. on saturday, president trump announced interior secretary ryan zinke would soon resign. zinke is facing at least 17 federal investigations into his suspected ethics violations. during his time in office, zinke presided over the largest rollback of otections to federal land in u.s. history and opened up vast swaths of u.s. coastal waters to oil and gas drilling. former fossil fuel industry lobbyist david bernhardt will become the interim interior secretary. he is the deputy now. meanwhile, trump has tapped mick mulvaney to become acting chief of staff to replace general john kelly. mulvaney already holds two posts in the administration white , house budget director and acting director of the consumer financial protection bureau. meanwhile, in texas, a federal judge has declared the affordable care act unconstitutional, setting up a likely challenge to president
obama's signature health care law at the supreme court. to talk about all of this and much more, we are joined by longtime consumer advocate and former presidential candidate ralph nader. he is author of the new book "to the ramparts: how bush and obama paved the way for the trump presidency, and why it isn't too late to reverse course." ralph nader, welcome back to democracy now! let's start where we ended with that long list of just what has happened this week, and that is ,his texas federal judge -- yes nominated by president george w. bush, by confirmed by democratic calling theis judge aca, obamacare, unconstitutional and what this means. >> i think it is going to be overturned. it is almost unanimously condemned by legal experts from all sides. it is considered intellectually bad opinion by conservative
legal scholars and announced even more the server is lead by progressive -- vociferously a progressive legal scholars. there will be no changes unless on rehearing, the judge really goes off the rails, but then i think he would be overreaching in terms of his own jurisdiction. we will wait for the circuit court of appeals. amy: so the circuit court of appeals rules and then it could go to the supreme court right in time for the 2020 elections. president trump tweeted this morning the deductible which comes with obamacare is so high, it is practically not even usable. we have a chance, working with the democrats to deliver great health care. a confirming supreme court decision will lead to great help to results for americans." so if you can respond to that and talk about an issue that is not talked about very much in
the corporate media. and that is the issue of medicare for all. >> that opens the door. if obamacare, which is full of loopholes, still 29 million people without health insurance, tens of millions underinsured, the corporations run away with record profits, drug companies, hospital chains, insurance companies, huge executive compensation. so if they overturn judicially, which is not likely, obamacare, even "the wall street journal" has said this will open up the path to single-payer, full medicare for all, everybody in/nobody out, much more efficient. and above all, it gives you your free choice of doctor and hospital. you're not corralled in these narrow networks. if you go on a network, -- out of network, you have to pay a tremendous price out of your own pocket. for is what we're waiting
congress to do now. the congressional committees, with their fat budgets and staff under the republicans, have been sitting on their hands. they have not been engaging in public hearings, amy. they have not been engaging in supervising the corruption in the executive branch. we are going to present to the progressive chairs of the house of representatives a whole list of hearings that have to be held in order to put these in play. electorally in terms of public opinion and in terms of civic action will stop i can give you a quick list if you would like. amy: go ahead. >> ok. first, obviously, one on single-payer, full medicare for all is now supported by a majority of the american people. a modest majority of doctors, even bigger majority of nurses. what are we waiting for here? it is much more efficient as well. there needs to be hearings on corporate crime of the judiciary
committee. there's a corporate crime wave in this country. according to malcolm sparrow of harvard university and other sources, $350 billion in annual billing, fraud, and abuse and health care industry. that is honest $1 billion a day. it is not even mentioned under the republicans in congress. johns hopkins university school of medicine put out a report over two years ago, 5000 people die every week in this country in hospitals due to preventable problems. we know what they are. there are no congressional hearings here. there has got to be congressional hearings on foreign policy. revaluation ofny failed foreign policy or the wars of aggression or the violation by the white house of the constitution, federal statutes, international treaties. there used to be hearings on the vietnam war that helped in the war. the house foreign relations committee has got to work on
that. .riminal justice reform that one is long overdue. i mean, the congress is the main investigative branch of the u.s. government, and it has been asleep while the republicans have been cashing in with these corporate cash contributions. how about climate devastation? i think we should not use the words "climate change." it is to benign. when i was growing up, that used spring, summer, fall. so you can just go list -- minimum wage. that should be up right away. that is a frozen $7.25. 30 million americans are making less today than workers made in 1968 adjusted for inflation.
houseas got to be the labor committee. amy: i want to go further with this issue in our next segment, but it want to talk about these latest development and get your response, for example, to trop desktop tapping mick mulvaney to replace john kelly. mulvaney already holding two pos ts in the administration. this promotion came as the daily beast website obtained a video recorded in 2016 of then congressperson mick mulvaney in a congressional debate calling donald trump "a terrible human being." this is what he said. >> [indiscernible] i think he is a terrible human being. amy: there he is calling trump a terrible human being. talk about the role that
mulvaney has played and what is going on in the white house right now, and does it matter who is chief of staff? is it significant he has been approved by the senate in his current roles, so that could mean he could be subpoenaed by the senate and testifying in a way that an advisor was an approved might not be able to be? the secondeen called most important job in the federal government, chief of staff to the president. mulvaney is a massive outlaw. -- everywhere he goes in the federal government, he shuts down law enforcement. he harasses civil servants. ea benefits wall street crimes with his supervision of the consumer financial protection bureau. he basically has said one of the main purposes of this agency is to protect wall street. when it is just the opposite. it was to bring them to justice
when they commit these crimes, these deceptions, these manipulations with other people's money him a pension money, mutual fund money. he really is an outlaw. unfortunately, our legal system does not give ready access to the courts by citizens to sue to remove him from office. he can be removed by the president. president. no one would be puzzled when he they have never met or lost a
war they haven't liked. more and more weapon systems. they fought against the auditing of the pentagon budget, something conservatives say is obvious. runaway corruption and corporate contracting, lockheed martin's f-35. so i think president trump is digging himself in even bigger hole by putting mulvaney there. ,he culmination of mulvaney john bolton, and secretary state mike pompeo is a legal one, even for trump's political survival. he is trying to get sycophants around him, which is usually a late stage in the collapse of a regime. amy: so on saturday, president trump also announced that interior secretary ryan zinke will soon resign. i think he was given an ultimatum of something like by the end of the year. least 17 federal investigations into suspected
ethics violations. during his time in office, he presided over the largest rollback of protections to federal land in u.s. history, open up vast swaths of u.s. coastal waters to oil and gas drilling. very much following in the model i think of scott pruitt, the former epa head who was then replaced by andrew wheeler, the acting epa had, who was a coal lobbyist. it looks like zinke is being also an by his deputy, oil and gas lobbyist. >> well, that is what was for seen by a full-page ad over a year ago by dozens of companies that are in the outdoor recreation business led by patagonia and their ceo. they basically predicted this is exactly what zinke was going to do. he was going to try to overturn existing statutes and regulations by fiat.
.nd he is in court environmental groups have taken him to court many times. so it is a good even that he is now out of office and mr. trump has to start all over again in terms of trying to corporate ties the resources that are on our federal lands the road by the american people and trust for prosperity. amy: in this possible government shutdown that could take place right before the christmas holidays, on friday, trump wanting something like he is saying $5 billion for the border with his shutdown showdown pelosi and schumer in the oval office? >> as usual, the democrats do not use all of the arguments i have. what schumer and policy should have said in that white house confrontation that was televised was mr. president, if you shut down the federal government, you're going to cost far more
american lives than a porous wall that is eroding from her property values and ranchers on the mexican border. because the shutdown will involve about 800,000 workers. look at where these workers are coming from. homeland security. he is going to shut down homeland security to build the wall for so-called border security? how about this? the law enforcement official of --be for load in terms for load in terms of undermining public safety. how about the environmental protection, dealing with toxic air, water pollution? how about people in the fda supposedly looking out for food safety, recalls of contaminated food? the democrats don't not have a make strong arguments whether it is for single payer, cracking down on corporate crime -- they really have to wake up. i'm going to hold them, and i think a lot of citizen groups are going to hold them, to the
highest level. there is huge corruption in the executive branch. you have poll after poll in america, it comes a number 1 -- what most people are concerned about is political corruption. they know how it plays out in their daily lives. through the house oversight committee, they're going to have politicalings on corruption, some of which is inherited from prior ministrations. amy: your thoughts on impeachment? >> impeachment is going to await the report of the mueller investigation. if he comes out with documentation in terms of high crimes and misdemeanors potential, the house of representatives has a constitutional obligation to initiate impeachment hearings. it is just basically investigating the high crimes and misdemeanors of president trump and other high officials.
fathers let presidents between elections be unaccountable except for one measure, and that is impeachment function. and basically, they said, look, we're going to let congress fire the high government official if they impeach in the house and convict in the senate. there's a good book on impeachment that educates people that has come out recently, and there are other information sources -- i mean, people of got to stop thinking impeachment is like the ultimate neutron bomb or something else that it should be viewed as a normal way where the smallest boast powerful -- most powerful constitutional branch of government, the only really way they can have to hold executive branch accountable, person by person, by official. congressman jerry nadler, who is
heading the house judiciary to look athas got his constitutional duties here. amy: ralph, i want to ask you to stay with us as we talk about your book. ralph nader, longtime consumer advocate, corporate critic, former presidential candidate who is just written a new book that we will talk about and a new moment, "to the ramparts: how bush and obama paved the way for the trump presidency and why it isn't too late to reverse course." stay with us. ♪ [music break]
amy: this is democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. in january, democrats will take control of the house with a record number of women. more than 100 headed to congress. among them, many new progressive members including alexandria cortez of new york, along with rashida tlaib and ilhan omar .
also playing to lead a congressional delegation on the tour of the israeli-occupied west bank, an alternative to the biannual tours led by aipac, the american israel public affairs committee for freshmen members of congress. native american women elected for the first time to congress as well. the progressive block already the congressional progressives have the largest caucus, and now it will be even larger. the question is, what they will do with it. still with us, ralph nader, longtime consumer advocate, and former presidential candidate. he has just written a book "to the ramparts: how bush and obama paved the way for the trump presidency and why it isn't too late to reverse course." can you talk about the mandate you see congress has right now and what you feel, ralph nader, they should do about it? >> well, just generally speaking, amy, the mandate to
enforce the law and obey the constitution sounds cliche, but look at the voter repression that is going on all over the country -- which if it wasn't applying, ght have produced even more progressive representatives in the house and senate. that has got to be looked into. look at the enormous waste of shareholder money and stock buybacks. apple is buying back $100 billion of its stock this year. that is like 200 years of budget for osha protecting the health and safety of american workers. it is dozens of years of centers for disease control budget. and apple doesn't know anything better to do with $100 billion like shoring up pension funds, like dealing with recycling the terrifically toxic waste from its used computers around the globe? that would take $2 billion out
of $100 billion. like investing more in research and development or giving it back to apple shareholders? so this whole stock buyback is a stripping of shareholder rights, including pension funds and mutual funds. it is a stripping of shareholder power. and a huge waste of money. it isn't like this country doesn't need investment. it is like these corporations when all of these tax breaks to get capital for investment. they told congress, known in the democratic party said, really? how come in the last 10 years you burn $7 trillion of stock buybacks to enhance the metrics for your executive compensation, which is out of control? so we have got to network all of the structures of abuses of power from the white house to wall street, right down to states like north carolina or wisconsin where they are detonating the critical rights andoting in this country
reaping the dividends for the corporate paymasters. i think it is time really to get down to the nitty-gritty, which is it is all about congress to turn around the executive branch , judicial branch. it is 530 five people. we know their names. they put their shoes on like we do every morning. and we know they want something we can give them or deny. it is called votes. people say, well, it is all about campaign money. they want campaign money to intimidate their opponents and put ads on tv to get votes. we cut the campaign money off like the past. you cut it off by mobilizing commerce watchdog groups in every congressional district. here's were people start getting bored, when you start thinking how you could turn this around. there are 725,000 people, men, women, and children in each
congressional district. a near one half of 1% of the adult, say a little over one million people, organized in 435 districts with full-time offices , representing left, right changes in our country. whereeft-right support people live, work, and reserve families. they call themselves conservatives or call themselves liberal, but they want the same things. they want safe medicines. they want health care that is affordable. they want better schools, repair public services, highways, bridges, drinking water. they want clean politics. that is what these democratic parties has for an opportunity now, i feel too left-right collective -- appeal to left-right collective. it is unbeatable politically in congress. i put this book out in order to show how to turn it around. we turn it around by focusing individually on your two
senators and representatives and to make it more joyous, there's a companion book called "how the rats reform the congress will score and you can get it by ormcongress.org. you'll get a print out on the civic ways to build these commerce watchdog groups so they become heard on capitol hill, which includes the citizens summons of your two senators and representatives that is in this book to some of them to your .own meetings to your agendas so all of the things that are off the table by the democrats and the republicans. that is not that hard to do. people do much more difficult things in their daily lives. how that raising children? how about dealing with health care problems? of about trying to take care an ailing grandparent? how about trying to recover from accidents?
how about trying to make ins ke ends meet as a single parent? amy: i wanted to ask you, ralph, recently long serving congress member john lewis joined other lawmakers in supporting the incoming new york august member alexandria cortez's call for a green new deal. lewis, the highest profile congress member so far to back her resolution to create a bipartisan committee that would work on a plan to bring the u.s. and carbon neutral economy adopt 100% renewable energy. the proposal also seeks to bar lawmakers who have accepted money from the fossil fuel industry. other lawmakers who support the green new deal include bernie sanders. i recently spoke with him about it. >> a green new deal is creating many millions of decent paying jobs, transforming our energy
system away from fossil fuel to energy efficiency and sustainable energy. amy: what about the significance of this as we have just returned from poland from the u.n. climate summit? >> it is obvious. it is basically revving up the people's economy and telling the corporate economy they have to reset and have to adjust, otherwise, they're going to be displaced. locally by waves of energy efficiency, renovating buildings, public buildings, homes, good jobs as bernie sanders said that can't be exported abroad, less pollution, less global warming, more money in peoples pockets because a green economy is much more efficient. much moree self-reliant. solar panels on more homes instead of going to your fossil fuel vendor. it goes without saying, but
congress has to have these hearings. they have to make this a high visibility issue. and that is what we have been lacking for years now. congress has been a dead zone. it has been wasting $5 billion, which is its budget, and increasing congressional secrecy , restrictive rules of progressive members, and putting more and more power in the hands of the top leaders, stripping former committee chairs of the ability to decide for themselves what kind of hearings. how do we get auto safety in 1960? it was hearings in congress that aroused the people, led to the recall of cars, pushed lyndon .ohnson to support it almost all of the changes in our country start at the federal statewith congress or legislatures. and people say, oh, we have got to go to court. but the court relies on statutory rights that are invoked. oh, we have to change the epa
and get it going. but if it doesn't have an adequate budget, if it doesn't have adequate authority, what kind of quality of staff are going to stay there? it goes back to congress. 535 people. amy: ralph, your book "to the is subtitled "how bush and obama paved the way for the trump presidency and why it isn't too late to reverse course." >> donald trump wanted to be president in his 30's. he is very ambitious. very, very egocentric. so he is sitting here watching a lot of tv and he sees all of the trouble clinton got into with infidelity, mistreated and women, covering up and even been convicted of perjury in a court case, losing his law license and arkansas and donald trump says,
oh, i see him at like that is one more barrier that falls that he can get away with. then he is watching george w. bush driving health and safety regulation to ground, coddling wall street, wars of aggression, sort of a presidency of immense concentrated power regardless of the constitution or other legal restraints will step in the says, you know, that is another thing i don't have to worry about, i can get away with. i like to use power. and then along comes obama. obama doesn't prosecute anybody on wall street. he takes more money from wall street than john mccain. he sells $60 billion of armaments to the saudis and more armaments to the israelis and says, well, that is because of iran and it creates jobs in our country. that is barack obama. trump is looking at this on tv and says, you know, i can get
away with that, too. it was all laid out for them. why should we be surprised? although, the electoral college selected donald trump come he did not win the popular vote, but he came close enough to invoke that antiquated mechanism. so we should not just think that replacing donald trump the whether by resignation or impeachment or defeat in 2020, is going to change the fundamental corrupt corporatist, warmaking structure of our federal government. the abuse of public budgets taking people tax money instead of returning it to them in terms of public works and infrastructure and other services, giving it to wall street or getting it drained away by corporate tax loopholes? present, these corporations are going to be tax-exempt profitable institutions the way they are going. that is why i wrote this book. don't get too complacent with a progressive of --
members of congress and the so-called blue wave. accounts have a lot to for before they are replaced by progressive democrats. amy: you mentioned yemen. we're going to talk about that in our next segment with our guest. but in a historic vote, u.s. senate has a resolution calling for an end to u.s. military financial support for the saudi have been led war on yemen, representing the first time in u.s. history the senate voted to withdraw military forces from an unauthorized war using the war powers resolution. the measure passed 56-40 one. earlier this year, you wrote a letter to the president. you wrote a letter directly to president trump saying, by any standard of international law, you are knowing, eight are in a better of these war crimes at a complicityblicity -- . you wrote that before the khashoggi murder in the saudi
consulate in istanbul on october 2. as we move into this next segment on yemen, if you could finally comment on the significance of this vote, republicans joining with democrats? >> very significant. a former reagan deputy attorney general bruce fine drafted resolution working with senator mike leigh. this is what i mean. once you get an increasing convergence between republicans and democrats on issue one, issue two, issue three, things start changing. this resolution, it can be vetoed, probably won't go anywhere, but in the new congress, there has got to be vigorous public hearings about the atrocities in yemen. 8 million people on the verge of starvation, as you pointed out. many programs ignored by the national tv news networks. cholera, over one million cases. hascase has never -- world never recorded that many cases.
the bombings by saudi airmen train in the u.s. using u.s. equipment. they are bombing water wells and hospitals and schools. consider that magazine article in yesterday's "new york times," hurting description of criminality here -- heartrending criminality of here. trump is openly a betting these kinds of atrocities with u.s. tax dollars, u.s. equipment, u.s. diplomatic cover, and he knows exactly -- he sees the pictures of the slaughter of innocent men, women, children in yemen. a poor country of 27 billion people on the verge of national starvation. when was the last time we saw something like that? connected right to the oval office? atald trump, look
yourself in the mirror. if you don't like the looks of a war criminal, stop the war in yemen now. amy: ralph nader, we want to thank you for being with us, longtime consumer advocate, corporate critic, and former presidential candidate. his most recent book "to the , ramparts: how bush and obama paved the way for the trump presidency and why it isn't too late to reverse course." when we come back, we look at a bomb made by raytheon in tucson, arizona, and how it made its way to yemen. the number of people are killed, who died, who was maimed. stay with us. ♪ [music break]
amy: this is democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. in a historic vote, the u.s. senate passed a resolution on thursday calling for an end to u.s. military and financial support for the saudi-led war on yemen. this represents the first time in u.s. history the senate has voted to withdraw military forces from an unauthorized war using the war powers resolution. the vote, 56 to 41. but the bill is not expected to pass the house this year. the vote came as peace talks in sweden resulted in a ceasefire in the strategic port city of hodeida that is schedule to go into tuesday night. it is created what the u.n. calls a world's worst humanitarian crisis. with more than half of yemen's 28 million people on the brink of famine. a recent report by save the children estimate 85,000 children under the age of five have died from acute now nutrion -- malnutrition
brought on the war. we end today's show by looking at a remarkable piece in this week's "new york times magazine" titled "from arizona to yemen: the journey of an american bomb: when a bomb like this explodes, it doesn't just kill people; it rearranges them." the article traces how bombs built by raytheon in tucson, arizona, made its weight into the saudi arsenal and then were dropped on yemeni villages. the article centers on what happened in the remote village of arhab when u.s.-backed saudi warplanes carried out a series of bombings on september 10, 2016. it was two months before 2016 election. barack obama was still president. according to human rights watch, at least 31 civilians were killed -- three of them children. 42 people were injured. remnants of the u.s.-made bombs were found at the site of the attack. we are joined now by the author and journalist jeffrey stern who wrote this in partnership with the pulitzer center.
he is the author of several books including, "the last thousand: one school's promise in a nation at war." jeffrey stern, welcome to democracy now! lay out what you found. tell us where this community in yemen is and what happened to them on that fateful day in september of 2016. >> it is good to be with you. district with a few villages. people had come together to build a well for themselves. this is a little bit into the blockade. it was a little bit into the food shortage. frankly, they needed more water and they needed their crops to grow more. it is a very dry area. it is a volcanic area in northern yemen. people had fooled the resources to try to dig a well. that is pretty expensive. these are mostly subsistence farmers, so it was not easy to come up with this, capital. they pulled the resources and built a well.
-- that thehe well drill struck water, the planes came. first it was early in the morning. about sixl and killed people and injured more. and then about five or six hours later when people had gathered to look for loved ones, to help, to just see what was going on, the planes came back and they's they'd are several hours -- they stayed for several hours chasing people down and dropping bombs on them. amy: explain who they were. this is a beautifully written piece as well. you actually, jeff, went there. you went to yemen and you went to this community and met the survivors. tell us who some of them are, who died and who survived. a man who owned a small -- he was a small business owner. he owned a drill rig. he was known as a pretty charitable man who often for
gave debt because people could afford a well. you could dig and not find anything and it would cost tens of thousands of dollars. he was killed. a young judgment and working in traffic court was essentially burned alive. there were a lot of people who survived. one of the things that we were able to do, the magazine was able to make space for, as described what it is like to try to get treatment for his incredibly traumatic injuries in an incredibly poor country that also is suffering from a blockade. fairly basic medical supplies are unavailable. even the people that survived had incredibly tough roads to recovery. and frankly, some of them will never recover. even those who will remain alive cannot farm. it is hard to get prosthetics or treatment. the effect of these bombs that
are designed to create massive -- create casualties in wide of an area as possible on people who are really unable to get fairly basic medical care, it is really devastating. amy: if you could talk about the connection of this bombing, a saudi air attack that dropped a u.s. bomb on yemen about two years ago, to the cholera epidemic, the worst in the world? >> so that is one of the reasons why we chose to focus on this struck. off-linee water well does not create a cholera epidemic, but the effect of getting so much critical of her wells,re including water including water treatment facilities, the other thing that i think is really critical is a little bit overlooked and i had not even thought of until someone mention this when i was there, is if you pool your resources and do something for your community -- like dig a
well or build a water treatment facility -- and this is what happens, you kind of learn your lesson. you learn that to build a water well for yourself, to build a water sanitation treatment for your community, to build a factory, you are inviting the planes to come. your inviting this kind of incredibly -- incredible devastation. people were traumatized allsup basically, they stopped doing this, stopped building wells. in the aggregate, what happened is the number of people in acute need of water spiked right around that time. about three weeks after this well was hit, the first cases of cholera were reported. within a year, there were a million suspected cases. it was one of the worst cases were outbreaks of cholera in recorded history. amy: the u.s. military saying -- give us their explanation for what they did and why they would
strike a community that was trying to put in a well. is nothe u.s. military doing the bombing. u.s. military has stopped refueling. for a while they were doing aerial refueling for the saudi -backed coalition, which is important because that allowed for something called dynamic targeting, which is when the planes go up and they look for things to hit, essentially. they don't necessarily have to and plan intelligence to strikes in advance. when you're able to loiter, you can look for things to hit. at the time, the u.s. was providing the roof -- refueling, which we are since stopped. the expedition the saudi have them backed coalition, there's something called the joint stoodnt, jit, which salute investigate some of these strikes and recommends action. they eventually investigated this, came out with a brief statement that said in essence the water digger looked like it
could be a ballistic missile launcher. -- theyanation kind of don't look that much alike. if you hit a ballistic missile launcher, there would be secondary explosions, fuel. the planes came back anchased people down for several hours. amy: a double tap, she put it. one after another. people who are concerned in the community coming to save those who have been hit the first time, then they get killed. >> exactly. especially children. kids were curious. people ran out of their houses once the sun came up and started to gather. double tap in this case does not quite do it justice. showed upts watch within several weeks of this attack. they found 12 craters that people said it felt like more
than 20 bombs had fallen. of course, we don't know that. we know at least 12 fell. double tap, kind of, but really it is one explosion that drew at least 12nd then more. amy: talk about the bomb. talk about going to tucson. talk about the company that made the bomb. >> so that was sort of , kind of a heart wrenching aspect. even after being in yemen. some of the people i talked to at raytheon really are building -- they take pride in what they do. this is not scientific. i did not pull thousands of workers. i talked to two. they're building not bombs, but the precision guidance systems that are attached to bombs. what they're doing, what they believe they are doing is taking something that would create a
lot of collateral damage and allowing it to create minimal damage. theoretically, that is true. supposedlyrectly, you would use a bomb like this and you could hit what you want to hit and avoid hitting what you don't want to hit. the other thing is they talked about how much pride they take in helping the american war fighter and keeping the american war fighter safe. keeping themselves safer. raytheon is a leader in workplace safety, somewhat ironically. in this case, though, in the case of foreign sales, we are providing these weapons sometimes to allies that are using them not as they are designed to be used and perhaps in exactly the opposite way of how they were designed to be used. so the idea of using a very precise weapon to minimize civilian casualties only works if you're trying to minimize civilian casualties.
saying theas far as saudi-backed coalition are deliberately causing humanitarian catastrophes -- i don't think that is something that certainly i can no -- but at the very least, they have been extraordinarily careless. in using these weapons to hit things like water wells, whether they believe it is a water well or not, has created the world's worst humanitarian catastrophe. amy: and finally, saudi arabia going to be state department through foreign military sales. we just have 15 seconds. >> we do this with a lot of different countries. the pentagon works as sort of a broker and helps the foreign countries get with a need. often those countries are serving our interests -- or at least we believe they do. the state department rigorously investigates, provides oversight, i should say, to these sales. but we are facilitating this. we are taking weapons from
private contractors and putting them in the hands of the saudi have them backed coalition, which is bombing civilians. amy: jeffrey stern, thank you for being with us. his latest piece for "the new york times" we will link to "from arizona to yemen: the , journey of an american bomb." thank you for joining us
welcome back to nhk "newsline." japan's cabinet is set to endorse new defense orders, including a plan to upgrade a self-defense into what would be an aircraft carrier. it would be the first. japan's government aims to strengthen its defense capabilities in the pacific ocean where china has a growing presence.
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