tv [untitled] December 12, 2011 7:00pm-7:30pm EST
well you know but it is so. far the occupy wall street movement is rocking the boat this time they're trying to shut down courts up and down the west coast with one simple message for the us government shape up or ship out. they want people to be able to have freedom of speech but they don't want the freedom to interfere with them in any way and it looks like the freedom of assembly might not be so free here in the u.s. thanks to over excessive police force so as raid after raid continues to happen at occupy protest r t asks whose interests are police really protecting and serving.
and while police forces play dirty president obama is trying to play nice with iraqi prime minister al maliki today trying to coerce him away from the so-called dark side another country on america's long list of enemies iran but that could be easier said than done so eight years and billions of dollars later what has the u.s. actually achieved in the war in iraq. and good evening it is monday december twelfth seven pm here in washington d.c. i'm christine you're watching our team. well take a look now at some new developments in the occupy wall street movement over the last few days two camps in major metropolitan cities were shut down and cleared out by police you see here this is boston police there very early saturday morning took apart the occupy camp there protesters had been there about two and
a half months about fifty people were arrested and it was a similar scene in san francisco late last week although there seventy people were arrested witnesses say police in riot gear gave protesters five minutes to clear the area then clear rest the rest of the camps themselves police then apparently tore down more than one hundred tents and threw the rest of protesters belongings into a garbage truck all right so clearly this is a ramped up effort by police and other authorities around the country to put a stop to the occupation aspect of this movement but those who are part of it say you know no worries they've got some other things in the works. in new york city this morning protesters stood outside of goldman sachs headquarters you may see they're holding up a giant squid there this is in reference to rolling stone journalist mattei evey's description of goldman sachs as a quote great vampire squid wrapped around the face of humanity relentlessly jamming its blood funnel into anything that smells like money but we really want to
take a look at what you're seeing here in this these are pictures from along the west coast major chord made effort by protesters talk cripple business in an industry that many call the wall street on the waterfront the goal is to shut down ports from san diego to alaska you see this map here these are all the ports that protesters. gathered at today the port of anchorage the port of los angeles longview the port of maui port why nini the port of oakland portland san diego seattle tacoma and last but not least the port of vancouver now this is a major effort and we want to talk about what it means and how effective today's efforts have been and to talk about all of this i spoke just a little earlier to our own ramona window our producer lucy catherine of and journalist only winston i started off by asking all lead to give us his take on what he saw at the effort to shut down the ports in oakland where he was. before i was up there this morning around five thirty am there was
a group of about three to six hundred people admit it was at the it was a bart station the regional rapid transit system and they marched from there out to the port of oakland which is about a mile and a half there also cars and buses taking people out there. and there was a little stand offs with wives of dr who's outside groups that opens about three different sections three different marches having to walk eight different births where there were ships her there were ships in a. mood and tense moments where there were stand offs with the local police in alameda county sheriff's deputies by and large it was peaceful there were no arrests there no clashes that i saw and as of this morning port officials are saying that at least half of the terminals are have been shut down the lever over trigger is actually ruled that it is a unsafe work environment and the warm foreign kid there who are not coming to work or they could leave work if they're still at the terminal so right now there's been
a real serious disruption to economic activity the port open today and we should mention as a side note one veteran scott olsen who was injured critically injured back during the protests in oakland was expected to be there i don't know if you saw him ali he was expected to be there as part of that protest or not i want to go to you i know you were up early in the morning covering the activity in l.a. it was a success was it a failure what did you say. well we're hearing this morning from both the protesters and the police they're both declaring victory now the protesters say that they are victorious because they were able to disrupt traffic although it may have only been for a couple of hours they there was definitely a backup at one of the gates unfortunate for the protesters logistically the porter down in long beach is just massive so trucks were able to use alternate routes to get in but their point was not so much to shut down things economically now the
demonstration there in long beach happened outside of s.s. a marine which is heavily. or partially owned by goldman sachs so they were very much trying to point out the fact that this marine terminal may not be treating its workers fairly in the words of the protesters and they also want to point out the fact that goldman sachs was a large recipient of bailouts and lastly they also want to point out that being one of the largest and busiest ports in america we're seeing so many goods being imported into america yet these days it seems to them that a lot of goods are not being made here in the usa so there is an imbalance when it comes to trace of these issues were brought up during the protests and in the eyes of the protesters despite the fact that the entire port was a shutdown this was definitely a small success for them and definitely showed their resiliency letting people know
that even though their encampment was torn down they still continue intend to continue to protest and to put out the message of income inequality and corporate greed i think that's a that's a really good point and lucy i want to talk to you about that aspect of it a lot of these camps have been torn down have been dismantled again what seems to be coronated effort by police around the country to do this so occupy the occupy aspect might be changing and shifting again but i want to talk about. what's what we're seeing here let's first talk just about this idea to shut down the port how does this kind of go along with the message of the occupy wall street movement shutting down ports well i mean it's an act of economic destruction and it's intended to sort of hit the one percent goldman sachs which over a large companies that own these ports where they hurt the most and if money if money speaks then doing these kinds of actions even if they're semi-successful certainly get national attention but the point that you raised earlier with sort of you know these occupations physically losing their spaces i mean it is significant in the sense that physically being there is part of what defines it like is that
occupy right it keeps it relevant to the press it keeps tourists local citizens etc focused on the movement but i think at the same time the raids almost achieved a really beneficial thing for the occupy wall street movement in the sense that they no longer have to focus on defending their space and maintaining you know the territory and sort of focus more on planning these kinds of large scale actions and you know this is just the beginning these kinds of actions are just the beginning if they have to winter just sort of go through tactics and and figure out what works and what doesn't i think that we can see actual severe significant economic attacks on the economy in a sense just the beginning but we've already seen of course some of the occupy foreclosed homes that we've seen in these actions at the actual banks so it is it's really the start of kind of a new chapter in this movement ali i want to bring you back into this discussion and talk have you talk about the union aspect of all this i know that occupy demonstrators in california they were hoping to get the support of the international longshore and warehouse union this didn't totally happen and i know
some cable networks a lot of the mainstream media playing this up as you know the unions reject occupy wall street can you kind of break this down for us the relationship between the occupy movement and the unions and what they were hoping to do and what they actually did do. sure will the action that's going to shut down on the west coast ports is actually in solidarity with. the e.u. local open longview washington which back about a month ago has very serious clashes with riot police over their refusal to let a group of grain be offloaded in their terminal in a long eternal because the family been stabbed by evidence that by scab labor a company name bunji international ltd decided they didn't want to pay your wages so they were going to try and get in and they were going to try and get new labor into the terminal so there's been a lot of union participation on kind of the. you know on
a less alert level there's been a lot of heat in part of spatial i love you members actually come out and help organize a session and the problem with the use of then you're national is that they have a clause in their contract that says they can't strike so this denial of the internationals and this action is actually sponsored by the idea of the e.u. it's true but at the same time they can't go out and say that they're in support of the action because then they remove the sections for them from the national labor review board for them from. as a result of their contract so there is actually very strong union participation in this a lot of the workers that i spoke to the unionized workers in the poor the long term and so there are very they're in support of the action that they're getting screwed over by the by the tunnel owners access a which you mentioned earlier in the snow. and their profit margins are getting you know they're they're getting squeezed for everything down from their their weatherized coats that they used to that the company used to furnish down to from there to there's no more christmas party there's no more televisions and they're in
there in their thoughts as a result there is there's a very strong sense of the workers in oakland that it's action is being done for them and it's not the tension is that it exists are mostly between the. that's and the poor people who are actually controlling the borders of the already and the protestors the rank and file seem to be largely is or this i read from a lot of them that it was very difficult for them to try to imagine crossing a picket line but they did also have to sort of do with what was better for the greater good i guess you could say ramon wondering if you know what you sign or you know you spoke to a lot of people you mentioned earlier that a lot of them sort of saw this as a victorious day was there any concerns now from the protestors that you heard from . you know there is definitely a couple of concerns first of all the very very strong police response now many of
these protesters believe that they were just exercising their first amendment rights in a public space now what we saw today in long beach were four different law enforcement agencies which teamed up in huge numbers in order to quell those protests and they were successful after several hours in pushing back the protesters away from their gates but there was also quite a bit of. just uncertainty about whether they will eventually get support from the unions now as he was mentioning earlier many of the union members on an individual bases do want to show support but again the union itself. told protesters that this may not have been the best method to protest and what we saw today were not the huge numbers that we saw at the oakland poor protests just last month so some of the protesters they are concerned that the numbers were not as
large however they said they were still very encouraged because despite the rain despite the cold weather we saw hundreds of people and not just here on the west coast and we were hearing reports from vancouver and canada we're hearing reports from houston texas i mean and this is a coordinated effort which could have been even larger had the unions joined in now so there's still that concern they're still trying to convince some of those union members to join into the protests but for the most part they are very encouraged about what's going to happen next hour and finally see one of the main reasons we brought you in here is because you spent so much time at occupy wall street in new york at zuccotti park you spend some time in oakland how do want to get your broader take about what's next where is this movement headed from here i think the biggest the biggest thing that we're going to expect is a huge i would describe what's happened to date as sort of a warm up street movement exploded faster than anyone believed it would they sort of dipping their toe in the water and getting a feel for their strength and the power i think that the winter months are going to
be used to to plan a lot of coordinated actions and activities similar to what we've seen today but on a much larger scale and when the president obama's re-election campaign wraps up next in the coming spring i think that is when we're going to see the explosion of this movement out of an unprecedented scale that's my personal protection and that was our. producer lucy kaffir knob and journalist only winston now as we mentioned artie has crews on the ground in many of these cities and we did speak to a few protesters today at the gathering in long beach california the effort to shut down the port there here's what they had to say. it would betray my love for this country to not be willing to put my body against the gears and enjoy the freedoms of young americans who did so in the civil rights movement american revolution and you know there are countless examples of this nation was founded on not only a protest but revolution that what the police have done is a clear breach of our first amendment rights are and that shows that they're not
they're not working for us they're not protecting us they're there protecting the people who own these ports they're protecting goldman sachs and that's not ok well speaking of the role of police in the occupy wall street movement it has been front and center in so many ways not only have they been the ones sent in to dismantle these camps around the country they've also been caught on camera using weapons on protesters from pepper spray to tear gas to rubber bullets and their endeavors have been quite expensive according to a new survey by the associated press that found approximately thirteen million was spent just over two months on occupy wall street this included eighteen different cities that were surveyed and most of this money was spent on overtime and other municipal services now we want to show you give you an idea on how that was divvied up new york city spent more than half of that total seven million dollars followed by oakland denver portland and atlanta but it's not so much the money as it is the treatment of the protesters who call themselves the ninety nine percent that has
brought so much attention is also highlighted a larger issue police brutality in america and has raised the question of who police are actually working for as are to correspond a marine important discovered they may not be the one percent but when it comes to protecting and serving it's often the one percent that reap the benefits from police. when the very people employed to protect americans. dousing body. and i. locked behind bars. tasting their. own blood. the land of the free adopt an entirely new image. what. are you going to work. with. in recent months u.s.
police officers have made an enemy. of those two this is using their freedom of speech to protest against corporate greed and corrupt politics today's breed of american law enforcement is dressed in riot gear and armed with heavy weaponry body armor flash bang tear gas and lethal projectiles. at tens of thousands of americans assembled cops have been accused of creating confrontation not just using it here they make. a level of police brutality so bad a former marine sergeant couldn't stay silent in the can. a woman better and who survived two tours in iraq with seriously injured by local police officer while using flash grenades canisters against occupy protesters but you know what you know it's twenty four year old scott olsen in the cockpit allies
with serious head injuries. in seattle the oldest victim of the police turned paramilitary with an eighty four activist temporarily blinded by pepper spray the united states which bills itself as the pillar of international law and democratic freedoms has consistently released itself on the world stage as the self-appointed beacon of moral authority to call upon the iranian government to abide by the international obligations that it has to respect the rights of its own people. respecting the rights of his own people. without the chose the path of brutal suppression. innocent civilians were imprisoned in some cases meanwhile at home as dissent in america grows louder many say washington's glasshouse of hypocrisy has shown beautiful symmetry they want people to be able to have freedom
of speech but they don't want that freedom to interfere with them in any way to be in any way destructive to or challenging is to them the line that conditionally separated us soldiers from civilian law enforcement has arguably been overeats replaced by what's being dubbed the american militarization of police tock tick tock tick for a major crack in the foundation of american principles such as democracy and human rights incidentally the same principles you asked you. all other countries about are enough or not arts in new york. so i had on our phase one invade iraq force regime change spend billions of american taxpayer dollars in the meantime face to kiss a new prime minister's ring and beg him to pick the u.s. over iran so what can possibly go wrong that story coming up next.
pepper spray that just burn gerard is right right i mean it's like a derivative of actual pepper it's a food product essentially. it's much stronger than anything you buy. thousands of times were stronger than any kind of ever put you know. let's not forget that we had an apartheid regime right. i think. he'd want to well. we never got that says they're going to keep you safe get ready because you're
going to have freedom. while i was a celebration of sorts at the white house today president obama met with iraqi prime minister nouri al maliki to discuss the end of the war in iraq and what's next for the two countries countries in terms of diplomacy security and trade we're here to mark the end of this war to honor the sacrifices of all those who made the state possible and to turn the page begin a new chapter in the history between our countries all right so this is what the camera saw what was discussed on the surface but tonight we want to take a look at some of the deeper issues here associated with u.s. troops leaving iraq and in particular how this new chapter affects the future
nearly all the troops will be gone but there's already talk of trainers coming back to teach iraqis a handful of troops that will remain will do so at the embassy which is rapidly expanding and more than sixteen thousand contractors and government officials. those day so yes that but the u.s. is a long way from being totally gone from iraq now as far as today's meeting it was met with a protest outside of several hundred people right outside the white house who gathered to shed light on plans to close a refugee camp in iraq camp ashraf it's home to more than three thousand people who call themselves iranian resistance fighters and you may have seen this ad running during the last few weeks we promised to protect them but now thirty four hundred iranian dissidents at camp ashraf in our great danger last april iraqi soldiers. killing thirty six unarmed people now prime minister maliki of iraq doing iran's
bidding plans to close and slaughter people working for a democratic nuclear free iran well inside the white house president obama who campaigned against the war in iraq today called the country a quote model for others who are aspiring to build a democracy and quote so what does all this mean well earlier i spoke to a blogger in iraq american political activist dry you gerar to answer just that here's his take. i don't think president obama himself believes that iraq is the way to say it but i think the u.s. is trying to spin what's going on put some happy ending there's nothing happy about what's happened in iraq and iraq is not a model for anything it's a destroyed nation one million iraqis were killed in the last eight years and five million were displaced you know i was born in baghdad spent most of my child to graduated from the university the last time i went to baghdad i did not know
a single person in the entire city every single person who i know it was either killed or moved out of the city it's a disaster for iraq continues to be a disaster it wasted. billions of dollars from the u.s. side and from iraq so it destroyed the u.s. image around the world so that to put spin today to make this seem as a success i don't think anyone believes that and despite all these points you've brought up raid there are some believe that what we saw in iraq you know going into this war under false pretenses building a democracy quote unquote that this is a model that will carry on for the future i mean do you think this do you think that not just in the arab world but in the arab world in particular but just for the rest of the world do you think that this is sort of a model that the u.s. will follow in the future. i think it was a very hard lesson that the u.s. and other countries to think about it learned that the hard way especially that
this is happening this year the year of the strings were many people argued for decades i argued for the last ten years that the u.s. should not have invaded iraq and that iraqis would have had the capacity to change their political regime by themselves and that was not to try to get any more now we see it this is practical this is what what tunisians this is what. egyptians that this is what human is and this is what many others would be doing in that region getting rid of their dictators without for another invading and occupying their country is i don't think iraq is a model of anything unfortunately that is a political process going on but that's a proper broken political process and although many people including myself vote in this political process we understand its shortcomings we understand the fact that the iraqi people voices are not being presented in a transparent method so iraq has a long way to go until it has
a functioning democracy you call it a hard lesson that the u.s. had to learn other countries as well. a hard lesson but looking back right i mean didn't they know didn't the bush administration state department officials cia all the military officials military intelligence on the ground i mean when you talk about democracy and going to another country to build a democracy it seems to me there are some basic lessons there lessons about culture and our geography about history of this place of iraq that either were not taken into account or that were ignored when it came time to actually get those goals those stated goals accomplished what do they know when you see we can't assume that there was a good intention to bring real democracy to iraq not everything that the u.s. government says it may mean. for four decades it changed the reason for the u.s. intervention in iraq that we shouldn't forget that the military intervention
started more than twenty years ago in one thousand men to one. give so many reasons democracy was one of them i don't think there was a sincere effort to bring in democracy there are so many solid examples on the ground that shows that the u.s. either circumvent circumvented or blocked the iraqi democratic system when iraqi. try to fight against u.s. interests when the iraqis wanted the us to leave the us tried its best to circumvent the system and state when iraqis wanted to elect their representatives the us tried its best to select their friends and keep them important so it wasn't a sincere process to start with and it was a failure because as you mentioned the majority of iraqis including myself did not believe that democracy would come on us thanks i want to i want to expand this from just the us iraq relationship to the broader picture the sort of global chessboard
here and let's talk about iran and syria certainly president obama has called for syrian president bashar al assad to step down more than four thousand people apparently have been killed in those in those protests and then there's the matter of iran and the relationship between the u.s. and iran want to get your take i mean if there is a war and it's involved it involves the u.s. and iran whose side is iraq take and why have they not been more supportive of the u.s. . sort of thoughts about syria this is another symptom i think it's another sign and proves that the u.s. policy in iraq failed miserably because now the u.s. is leaving what do we have in iraq we have seen the state that is run by political parties loyal to iran mostly. the current iraqi political regime is not very friendly with the u.s. but it's very friendly with iran so it's a war theoretically up between the u.s. and iran the current iraqi regime will most definitely take your onside that we saw
and with the events in syria there are key government took the syrian government so it was the only government in the border actually. other than lebanon that fought against sanctions on syria and they continue to supply syria with embargoed material. like the hardware and software used to censor. internet censorship but is being brought from the us and sold to c.d.o. by the government so it's another example of this strategic failure of the united states in iraq we're out of time thanks so much a blogger an iraqi american political activist rare and for now that's going to do it but for more on the stories we cover and go to our dot com slash usa be sure to stay tuned for the eight pm show we're going to speak to an occupy boston organizer jager want about the eviction that happened over the week.