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tv   [untitled]    November 29, 2010 11:00pm-11:30pm EST

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so don't need to go and. read this in the can it was such a retreat. washington says the recent release of documents is an attack on the us any international community whistle blowing web site wiki leaks published two hundred fifty thousand secret u.s. diplomatic wires from around the world some analysts claim the revelations show that government incompetence. under suspicion tehran accuses the u.s. and israel of plotting the assassination of iranian nuclear scientists one physicist died another was wounded in separate attacks the two researchers were actively involved in iran's nuclear program. and china calls for an emergency meeting of the six nations involved in north korea disarmament talks as tension builds in the korean peninsula joint naval exercises between south korea and the u.s. are underway despite warnings from pyongyang north korea has reportedly put its surface to surface missiles on high alert. picking up on our top story below to show up
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next takes an in-depth look at whether the wiki leaks revelations could lead to more international instability that's coming up. back in the lower show at the real headlines with none of the receive can live out of washington d.c. now wiki leaks has dumped the first batch of two hundred fifty thousand diplomatic cables to newspapers around the world we're going to tell you some of the highlights now i will speak with lieutenant colonel anthony shaffer about how these cables might be foreshadowing geopolitical firestorms and in light of the new leaks we're going to compare the fallout of the previous ones from the whistleblower web site could this fresh batch of information provide leverage against us as the daily banter is ben cohen then we'll ask if justice in america is really fair or do the
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rich and the influential get off really easy or the average joe would wind up behind bars some call the science of a platonic recy going to speak to alter net editor joshua holland then is the fight against climate change hopeless the u.n. climate change summit is happening right now and can call in mexico but nobody seems to be paying any attention so should we just wave the white flag here well potter is going to join me to discuss the issue and the d.a. could they be overreacting by placing an emergency ban on synthetic marijuana k two has been immediately classified as a highly abusive schedule one drug above other substances like cocaine value and opium so we're going to speak to jacob sullum from reason magazine on whether or not that will really do any damage control and else we vons today's top story. cyber monday has taken on an entirely new meaning whistle blowing web site wiki
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leaks has dropped the first batch of two hundred and fifty thousand diplomatic cables that are shedding light on what the u.s. knows about other countries around the world aside as leaked information about not only intentions by the u.s. . yes but from other powerful leaders as well and here are just a few of the cables that were officially released by newspapers yesterday we'll start with pakistan cable explains that the us and london were deeply worried about pakistan's nuclear weapons program and their fears are primarily based on the fact of the government is facing severe economic problems and as government employees are suffering they might be more tempted to smuggle out nuclear materials to get the terrorists to make bombs now the cables also turn to saudi arabia what it's where it's been determined that saudi donors are in fact the biggest fight and series of terrorist groups it's also been revealed that the king of saudi arabia king abdullah asked the u.s. in two thousand and eight to attack iran in hopes of destroying their nuclear program and the cable says the king of those exact words are to quote cut off the
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head of the snake that's what he said when he met with washington diplomats and he also urged the kingdom must cooperate with u.s. efforts to roll back iranian influence in iraq now in yemen president ali abdullah saleh covered up u.s. military strikes on al qaeda groups occupying the country claiming that they were carried out by yemeni forces not by the u.s. back in january their president spoke directly with general david petraeus and he said we'll continue saying the bombs are ours not yours and the cable further reveals that the yemeni president even will lie to his parliament about who was responsible for the attacks now another cable reveals that secretary of state hillary clinton signed off on orders for u.s. diplomats to spy on diplomats from other countries at the u.n. the diplomats were told to get information about e-mail accounts credit cards passwords and other highly sensitive biometric information biometric information meaning iris scans passport photos fingerprints and d.n.a.
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and it looks like the u.s. wanted to keep a very close eye on u.n. secretary general ban ki-moon intending on intending information about his. and intentions for sensitive issues like iran and remember these are just a solo act few of thousands of cables so now they have a better gist of what sensitive information has been leaked to officials around the world we can't help but wonder what the fallout might be. as expected u.s. officials including the white house and secretary of state hillary clinton have condemned the release of these cables saying that they not only attempt to sabotage diplomatic relations but also put lives at risk those are the same words that we've heard in regards to wiki leaks release of the iraq war logs of the documents relating to the war in afghanistan but perhaps the real question is not whether lives are at risk right now but if they might be in the future if geo political battles that we have thought were only fiction are brewing into real storms earlier
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i caught up with lieutenant colonel anthony shaffer senior fellow at the center for advanced defense studies i first asked him if there's anything in these cables specifically that he found shocking. i think the details relating to the conversation between general petraeus and the president of yemen was a bit shocking by the fact that it revealed something frankly a lot of we've always kind of known that the yemenis may not have been the ones shooting the weapons but it's a whole different. presentation a whole different perception when you see it in black and white so i think that's been one of the biggest reveals. this release much like the last ones i think a lot of information was suspected but again seeing it in black and white gives an entire different flavor so i think it's as more the most shocking things yeah definitely having you know seeing the franc the russians that were had the words that were used otherwise i mean you know people sit around pundits all day in fact about we speculated you know the geopolitical games who you know what's in his
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interest when you actually see the conversation and you see the yemeni president saying that ok we're just going to keep lying to the parliament and telling that there are bombs not your eyes i mean wow that's pretty amazing you know and a you can look at yemen and you also can look at pakistan right now you said that the big issue with pakistan is this we all knew that this problem with pakistan is the issue here and this is why i've been a bit critical of mr assad in the way they've done this by throwing it in people's face i think you've actually stirred up the pot to the point where you increase the likelihood of people reacting badly in the case of the pakistanis the fact that we were trying to work with them to get nuclear material i don't think anybody surprised by that but the fact that the pakistani government was cooperating is the big reveal which then hurts the pakistani government as it shows they were not you know doing what they perceive is protecting their own interests you know there's a population there which is going to be very unhappy about this and frankly it adds to the complexity of how well we work with others to protect what they're doing and
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so this is i think the big issue here is not so much about the details it's just the fact that the details reveal that people are cooperating more than than than it would almost say is happening cooperation with everyone on the project in the government. has always been reluctant to admit you know any type of real cannot solution or effort with the u.s. government yes and you're right i mean we have a pakistani population that while anti-american sentiment absolute very high there so i mean what kind of you know repercussions do you think that this could have not only for the relationship between the u.s. and pakistan but for the war effort not ganna stand well i think in the case of pakistan for example there may be some real calls for accountability like how could this happen and president zardari may be well jeopardized by this sort of thing same in yemen so i think in the long term. study of this we will not know the full effects of this for probably six months to a year because these things will take time to reverberate. in the end though as we've talked about before i don't believe the current policy that the obama
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administration has in place regarding the war is going to see a victory so. to the larger issue of the war nothing really that they related as you know chase you know that if you look at fifty two million dollars taken out of country by one of president karzai senior officials that should raise a few to a few eyebrows but again it will have an effect probably not is afghan yeah it is corruption in the afghan government or in afghanistan in general a new topic absolutely no i think you know iran is definitely one of the very interesting. just i circles vicious circles that we find here because you know we see that saudi arabia in fact was asking the u.s. to bomb iran right now you have you know of course netanyahu saying that this vindicates israel stance absolutely so do you think that because of that now we're going to see those the neo cons of people that are actually pushing for some kind of a conflict with iran to have more sway if they're saying hey everybody wants us to do it well i was kind of surprised at the iranian response to this said no big deals like gee when your neighbors all of
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a sudden calling for you to be hung i'd be able to board about that and frankly yes i think this is a huge issue by the fact that it was not so much our own government but foreign governments not the israelis calling for the attack of the iranian nuclear program with that said i think again in the weekly leaks issue mr assad his effort may have the opposite effect here because clearly the saudis are the ones as a regional competitor to the iranians who are most concerned and frankly you and i would i think tend to agree on this this is a regional issue the people living in that region have the most concern about their own security in this case well you tell some of the people here in washington that it's a regional issue and they'll probably laugh in your face because they're saying that iran is the greatest threat to the world and you know it in present day i understand and maybe if there's issues clearly that indicate that the iranians are doing things with other countries which are not friendly to us that's very clear however we're not the ones who have to live with a nuclear iran or on our doorstep and this is where i think this those are the ones
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interesting way enough that everyone wants to take action yes right there everybody is calling for the u.s. to bomb iran that they don't want to be implicated in iraq and then they want to be able to point fingers why is it just you know the job of the u.s. to do this in some instances is the last stand in superpower i think we've been almost. boxed into this policeman of the universe thing and i think it's one of those things we're clearly hope the russians do re insinuate themselves in a larger way in helping to stabilize areas like the middle east where these issues were heard both sides and frankly with the chinese as well these are all international issues we're bad actors with nuclear weapons can do bad things and so that it's in the the world's best interest to not necessarily have the americans do all the heavy lifting here and this is where i think nato does have a role but frankly you know we're the ones kind of push but it is easier just to make us do everything very quickly of course right officials the white house secretary of state hillary clinton are you know just blasting this release saying that it puts lives in danger as they said with the last two releases although there
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has been no proof the enjoying life has actually been affected so i mean do you think about are they overblowing when they make statements like that i think if you cry wolf long enough people start taking. you know ok what because recently i believe there was a memo from department offense to the hill from secretary gates to capitol hill saying we can't find any evidence so far with that said i think this release is far more telling and has the potential for loss of life than the previous two previous to iran iraq they filled in the colored in the puzzle pieces we'd already had we already knew about the bad actors in afghanistan and pakistan we knew about the we knew about the issues relating to human rights violations in iran i mean i'm sorry i read nothing new but in this case we're stealing seeing new issues starting tomorrow which is going to emerge and this of course is only just a few hundred out of the full two hundred fifty thousand server knows what else will come in exactly tony thank you so much for being here you for having. now we've already touched on the military the security details in the cables that
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relate but some of the juiciest bits are really more like gossip conversations that you wouldn't necessarily expect diplomats to be engaging in things like name calling low blows even some bizarre ideas so we compiled a list of our favorites for you get this saudi arabia's king on. seriously suggested implanting homing devices in guantanamo detainees and they're tracking their movements via bluetooth apparently abdul thought up this one on the fly noting seriously that horses other animals are already tracked using similar software and the worst part is of course that john brennan obama's leading counterterrorism advisor replied jokingly with horses don't have good lawyers. then one more when it comes to get well apparently our government views the detainees as bargaining chips with other countries telling slovenia that if they wanted a meeting with obama they'd have to take a detainee then comes the name calling in these top secret documents french president nicolas sarkozy is called an emperor without clothes iranian president
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mahmoud ahmadinejad is like into hitler and german chancellor angela merkel is called teflon and she's considered to be very tough and definitely not a risk taker of these cables even have details of a top secret romance between libyan leader moammar gadhafi and his ukrainian nurse . apparently it often has blonde bombshell of a nurse also doubled as his mistress so who knew that diplomatic cables also served as a great international gossip. now while some of those conversations and statements the nicknames the descriptions of world leaders are embarrassing perhaps even petty we do have to wonder if this set of leaked documents might have stronger rep or questions and those before them if everyone has forgiven or forgotten maybe even ignored what we learned about america's wars will it be the same with american diplomacy or have the revelations that we spy on u.n.
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officials biometrically scan officials in africa in the middle east has all that struck a nerve has information been released that might be used as a leverage against america's all powerful image and somehow change the results joining me from a studio in los angeles is ben cohen editor of the daily banter and founder of banter media group ben thanks so much for joining us now i want to begin you know if we look back to the iraq war logs perhaps the documents released about the war in afghanistan the fall out was kind of nonexistent there were live or there wasn't you know that great of a reaction around the world do you think that these diplomatic cables my offer something different. yeah i think they do i think it gives a really intimate look as to how international relations work how the u.s. is going about gathering intelligence very personal information about foreign leaders what kind of espionage tactics the u.s.
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is using so yeah this is a very personal dimension to the scandal and i think that's going to have repercussions because that's how intelligence is gathered is through postal interaction so i think this is this is definitely going to have a lot bigger impact than the previous previous weeks or of course you know if you listen to our state department officials they'll say they are diplomats are just they're only diplomats this is normal everybody gathers information and shares it you know with their allies but you know you've taken a further you say that the u.s. will no longer find allies so willing to cater to their orders after that you know how why is it going to be such a strong result or in fact. i think the impact is going to be quite subtle although it will be quite far reaching. foreign embassy foreign embassies around the world are going to you know they have functions they have they're invited to different events of state and things like that and they're going to find themselves they're going to form relations between themselves and their host countries and
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a bit more strained and host countries a little bit less willing and forthcoming with giving them information and that is going to seriously affect how america gathers intelligence around the world because it no longer has the first of which it doesn't have any trust left because they call on the state department called keep it's called keep it secret so they know everything they're going to say has a potential of being leitz and also they know kind of what the u.s. thinks about them and they know that some of it's not very flattering so i think it's going to have a you're going to see lots of subtle shifts around the world where foreign countries are going to start to shun the u.s. diplomats or one of the things i guess i found so shocking is that you know some of these conversations and the descriptions in the name calling they have they're so frank i mean really these are all professional diplomats talk to each other's a you know legler drinking buddies and kind of just talk smack on people. i think that's the thing that's how it works there's a great book by
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a guy who craig morrey who is the run the british embassy in baghdad stan and you suggest anyone should read the book as to how foreign diplomacy works about how embassies are run the i mean it's done through human beings and human interactions so it really is this does so on a so very interesting light on the how this stuff works now tell me this was something that i found interesting is that this time around we can leaves actually didn't give the documents to the new york times whereas they did last time and in fact it was the guardian ad then shared those documents with the new york times why do you think they did they did that i mean is that supposed to be a slap in the face to the american public ation. yes i think it is i think it's a big slap in the face to the to new york times because the new york times has had a history of protecting the powerful protecting the interests of the elite where is newspapers around the world of the guardian industry you have. more reputation for
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speaking truth to power not protecting the elites in their countries i mean the new york times was a big promoter of the war in iraq and afghanistan and i think the wiki leaks decision to so not used them old to give it a second hand is a direct repute for their acquiescence to really power in america when now we have u.s. officials of course calling to make wiki leaks a foreign terrorist organization do you think about words getting thrown around a little too loosely now i mean might it discourage people you know once they run out of material allegedly gain from bradley manning are the people still going to want to leak to them we should it's ridiculous to call them a terrorist organization the speaking truth to power the it's a this is what journalists should be doing this is what people institutions of the new york times and the l.a. times and. every major publication c.n.n. and m.s.m. should this is what they should be doing is uncovering documents like this and
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speaking truth to power rather than protecting protecting the powerful protecting the state so to call them a terrorist organization is just i think that's just crying wolf and i don't think it's going to be taken too seriously by anyone while you're the second person that told me that today i think it does sound like crying wolf and it seems like that is the reaction across the board ben thank you so much for joining us thanks alina. well still to come tonight it's time for show and tell stick around for your responses to our question from last week and i will ask if the american justice system is fair or if it's catered to let the rich off easy on the rest of us lowly souls have to pay when i speak with alter net's jostle holland about the topic and just of all. the clues in the speech to the screen where rich academic life gives birth to you know b. to mind you. know our g.
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goes to the area which together with boosting industrial development. congress to make a journey into russia's history. and to enjoy version of the culture like. welcome to the param region in russia. on r g. when you believe. the right. harvard. law it's time for show intel on the a lot of shell our new segment and last week we asked our viewers if they would ever vote for sarah palin and what we actually got a lot of responses from you guys and the overwhelming majority of them all said no
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but we decided to pick a few out because we found them interesting let's start with facebook travis jones responded i still don't get how she made it out of the national political scene she'd be great as a bake sale president or something but president of the united states than we have polly glosses emanuel who responded to us on twitter and he said the following i would never vote for sarah palin the way in which she twist the truth and uses populist logic is a threat to democracy and we even got a video response take a look at that i would never work her one for president in twenty two i don't she supported the bailout she claims to be a fiscal conservative but you supports the bankruptcy wars of iraq and afghanistan and you want to start another war in iran on top of. not only the only woman in my heart for twenty drove from going across the. board. well thank you for the video
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response we definitely appreciate that and it seems like there are really a whole lot of sarah palin fans out there now some of you guys criticized dozens of the question was too easy but it was the first time around we had to ask a simple one just to see what kind of responses we might get but here is your next question. do you think that wiki leaks has gone too far with this or latest release of their documents you can respond to us on facebook twitter and on youtube. now do you ever get the feeling that justice isn't applied equally in this country the rich and influential get off easy for crimes of the average joe would face serious jail time for the tom de lay is never going to get life in prison while some other tom probably would have well you're not the only one the examples are rampant if we look at the resources devoted to jailing nonviolent drug offenders versus white collar corporate criminals or the fact that debtors prisons which have been abolished over a century ago are back throwing people with three hundred dollar fines behind bars
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all while as of yet not a single bank executive has been held accountable for crashing the u.s. economy are these just coincidences or are they result of a cordon a good effort a hard push to make this country a plutocracy earlier i caught up with joshua holland senior writer and editor for alter net on the author of the fifteen biggest lies about the economy and everything else the right doesn't want you to know about taxes jobs and corporate america i first asked him if beyond those few examples that i threw out of wall street execs getting away while small debtors get locked up if he thinks this is happening all across the board. well i do you and i certainly think that that's common to every stage to a certain degree the question that i would is it getting worse we've seen certainly in the accumulation will she be patient as well but it's up and you know we have to ask ourselves whether that kind of the policies that have resulted in that might have a spillover effect into other parts of our culture but one thing that i found very
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interesting is that you know in your article here you you start with the simple story of a hedge fund manager essentially who got away with a hit and run but what's so interesting about it was that the d.a. then openly admitted that when it came to you know coming up with a sentence for this man coming up with convicting him what they basically admitted that perhaps his social status should come into consideration there i mean what does that tell you when they start openly discussing these things well if you put your foot. really telling about this case certainly as i pointed out in the article you know people have gotten off because they're influential many many times for traffic accidents and these kinds of things but stunning was here you had a district attorney who had run for office as a republican aide run for the colorado state legislature and he was just basically very open about the fact that they had decided to charge this hedge fund manager
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with or to accept a misdemeanor plea over the objections of the victim of this really brutal hit and run because he was. it because it would have affected his career the under the f.c.c. rules if you're a hedge fund manager and you commit a felony to be reported within thirty days but if it's a misdemeanor you don't have to go public with that and tarnish your reputation and the da said that this was a consideration that he needed to take into account because of the need to pay restoration i don't think that. that excuse stands up when you look at the types of dollars that these folks have accumulated yeah somehow i can't say that i feel sorry for him at all but do you think that there's some kind of a you know mentality in this country that rich people are more important than poor people that they're the ones perhaps you know they create create the jobs that they you know fuel the economy and therefore the justices seem to take it
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a little easier on them. well i think that's a really important point you know i point out the fifteen biggest lies about the economy that we are we have a culture that exults the wealthy as these job producers and any kind of burden which which taxes or regulation should put on them is supposedly a burden that all of society has to bear you know when you look at the reality. that narrative or the lack thereof what does create jobs well it's demand it's consumer demand wealth does not create jobs except for you know people who clean yachts and things like that it's ordinary people going to the store and buying things that. you know creates the demand that business is then fulfilled by hiring or one of the things that i found so interesting that you mentioned he was asking whether we can look at all this you know as random events that have absolutely no
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connection or whether there are perhaps is some kind of a plan at work here and you mention the fact that you know just as much as there are you know ideologies that control our media they're very much those ideologies that control our justice system when it comes to you know even the top law schools around the country tell us more about that. well you know when you use the word controlled as much as i would use the word influence so we've had very significant conservative donors for example funding a whole variety of chairs that top top law schools for thirty years now and you know they are they do would dance an ideology that suggests that the the court house is a place where ordinary citizens sort of abuse their power over the well the corporate elites and they're trying to roll that back and it certainly has had an effect over the years and you see. other other initiatives more systemic initiatives like i
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raised a point in the piece about how the supreme court is in all likelihood going to all but eliminate. the idea of. the class. isn't right and this is a one of a number of larger trends that you could look at and see this kind of ideology developing in our legal system or josh you know i knew after all that i ask if perhaps this means that we're sliding gradually into becoming a police and there's a lot of people out there that would say we already are one thank you so much for joining us thanks for having. coming up our tool time winner is a congressman who is ready to declare wiki leaks a foreign terrorist organization find out who that is in just a moment and there's a major climate change summit taking place this week in mexico but there is little or no coverage so this is.


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