Skip to main content

tv   Americas First Ladies  CSPAN  September 7, 2013 8:00pm-9:01pm EDT

8:00 pm
doctor they choose, at lower cost. that's what republicans are fighting for. it's time for democrats to join us. thanks for listening. discussion about the decade-long search for osama bin laden. and the cochairs on the commission for presidential debates. later, a town hall on public service with former senators trent lott, olympia snowe, and others. next, a look at the decade- long search for osama bin laden. this is from this summer's aspen security forum. peter bergen is the author of "manhunt: the tenure search for osama bin laden," which was made into an hbo documentary by producer and director greg -- grabgeg barker.
8:01 pm
this isn't about an hour. -- is about an hour. >> hi, everybody. this time you do not have former government officials here. you will find we have two very well informed guests. the two men behind manhunt. he might see this tonight. "manhunt: the search for osama bin laden" is the film title. today it was nominated for two primetime emmys for best documentary and for best cinematography. [applause] congratulations to the two gentlemen with me who are here today. you probably know peter bergen. you have seen him a lot. a best-selling author. he set up the first television interview with osama bin laden
8:02 pm
back in 1997. his books include "the holy war." mr. barker lived in england for 18 years. he lives in los angeles now. making films for the pbs series "frontline." "the new york times" loved your "koran by egypt.-- heart" in egypt. you learned a lot about the culture. the film does debut on hbo. that is what we are discussing. this is just over 1.5 hours. i think it is terrific in large part because their ability to get people to talk. let's start with an example of that.
8:03 pm
we have four excerpts. let's watch excerpt number one. ♪ >> we have patience and perseverance and we are not always looking for the payoff immediately. trying to keep track of all the threats and which ones are real and which ones are not real, you know, people say why did you connect the dots?
8:04 pm
because the whole page is black. >> to pull a story out of all this information but there is no single intelligence looking at all this information, it is a lot of different brains looking. the more you can bring people together and share what is important, the better it works. at the time the people who had deep expertise in al qaeda they were women. they did a job. at first it not make them very popular with their managers. >> i was counseled once in a performance review that i was spending too much time working on bin laden. they said we were obsessed
8:05 pm
crusaders, it using all the women stereotypes. men throw chairs, women cry. which one is better? >> that gives you a sense of the tone of the film. one of the women use all recently said that women are better analysts in counterterrorism because they understand relationships and terrorism is about relationships. the way it operates and is formed. they are better at perceiving patterns. well. how did you get the women to speak to you? even after they were identified, how did you persuade them to talk? >> it is great to be here. largely it was a long process not just for the women but for
8:06 pm
everybody in the film. i try to make films that shine a light on how our government actually operates. although a lot of subject matter might be classified, human emotions are not. i made a point of talking to some people in this room and people in the clip. spending a lot of time with them and building trust saying i want to tell your story. in a full as way as possible. if we need to set certain for parameters, we can talk about it. that is fine. peter was a terrific help in that. peter made introductions. to go on camera they have to trust me. when i walk away with the footage, i can do whatever i want with it. >> let's bring you in on this. when you develop a source for
8:07 pm
what we do, which is getting people to talk about delicate work, you have to get than the sense that you are on their side. is that part of it? >> i think greg was able to correctly say that he was going to let people have that say. one of the interesting things is there is no narration. there's no one telling you what to think. one of the messages of the film which i think shows you're not thrown to think it is 9/11 was not an intelligence failure. it was a policy failure. the cia could not have provided more strong warnings. it is almost a case of perfect strategic warning. think of the august 6 daily brief. it does not get anymore graphic than that. >> illustrated in the film by
8:08 pm
john mclachlan who is probably in the room, putting up the pieces of papers and you could see where they were. >> the cia was providing strategic warnings. they are not able to save time and place. the women in the film and other people at the cia felt very strongly that this story had not really been told very well. that is one of the reasons they spoke. >> a lot of people in this room do get asked by folks like us will you give an interview, whether it is for print or a book. >> my advice is don't do it. [laughter] >> you think what is in it for you. you illustrated one thing, the story had not been told well. have either of you come across someone who wanted to talk
8:09 pm
because they were disgruntled? >> as an example of someone in the film who wanted to talk to is not prevented by the cia they were not disgruntled. she is the mother of five. she was the first person in the u.s. government to write in 1993 a warning about a guy called osama bin laden who is going to be a problem. she wanted to talk. she is a public figure. she's not undercover. the agency would not let her speak. at the end of the day, the american public has been trillions of dollars on this since 9/11. the hunt for osama bin laden is a huge success story. why not talk about it? >> it was interesting. we began shortly after.
8:10 pm
i got the rights to peter's book. it was a wall before we started filming. at the time we are starting to film, all the controversy over the "zero dark 30" was breaking. the door started closing quite rapidly at the white house, at the cia in particular. the irony is we can talk what we want but the documentary is where we really wanted to just let people tell their story. that is where he faced a lot of roadblocks because of the cooperation with the movie. >> in both intelligent work and in intelligence related journalism, we are in a post- snowden era. what do you predict will be the
8:11 pm
effect of snowden's leaks when we ask for interviews and information? >> i do not think it will be a problem. in some cases it might be. people ultimately always want to tell their story. i have a much longer lead time with a documentary. 1.5 years or sometimes longer. it is a golden age for documentary filmmaking right now because of the decline in covers of some of the more mainstream media. it is not done as much as it used to be. it is a great time to be making these films. there is a desire to get the story out in a way that we can tell it through first-hand accounts. in the short term, with some
8:12 pm
people it will have a chilling effect. >> i think snowden is just one example. if you look at what the four years in the "zero dark thirty" reveals, it was an investigation of the pentagon, mike vicker's conversation, they are all out there publicly. if i was sitting in this position or anywhere else and i felt like if i am going to talk to a journalist or a book writer or a filmmaker and there is a chance it will become public, do the math. i think snowden is just one element. the leak investigations, all these things have a chilling effect. >> let's have another excerpt
8:13 pm
from the film. it takes you into the information after you found someone who was detained. where do you take them? enhanced interrogation techniques. let's watch excerpt number two. [video clip] >> we were empowered more. we did things more aggressive. my job is to kill al qaeda. get with us or get out of our way. we had been focusing on capturing. he knew who the leadership was. he new method of attack that targets. he was the highest we have ever
8:14 pm
captured. we captured him in march. he was severely wounded. we knew we had to get him out of pakistan. the way they had dealt with issues like this was to transfer the terrorist to a investigation. we needed to take responsibility for high-level terrorists ourselves. we understood what we had to do. we did it. >> we took a lot of bad guys off the streets. they got put up and now it is public knowledge in a nice little boutique locations. [end video clip]
8:15 pm
>> that man was a cia field officer. he introduces the word "downrange," the ones out there in the field. you took up the controversy. what do you think you were able to add in the film that was new in the debate about waterboarding? >> i try to place the audience in the mindset of the people who were making the decisions at the time. to hope that the general public would ask themselves what they would have done. when i have these long discussions with people in the film about being in the film, i never want talked about what i thought about this.
8:16 pm
i think that is one reason they decided to be a part of it. one man from the fbi has a substantial role in this section as well. >> well-known for believing water boarding does not work. many point to this as an example of how it can work. i am never trying to just break new ground per se. i'm trying to add contacts.-- add context. how decisions are actually made as told by the people who were there at the time. it is what gives a film like this its value. >> your book and film are about searching for bin laden. the type of interrogation that took place, to finding bin laden? >> there is a 6000 page answer to that that is still classified. any public discussion of this
8:17 pm
matter is made difficult by the fact that we do not really have the facts. in the course of my book i found wikileaks to be very useful. the summary of the key guantanamo detainees were in the wikileaks dump. you can piece together what these people were saying and to some degree when they were saying it. what you cannot find in there is a very specific analysis of what this information was given up before or after interrogations. there is no doubt. there is no doubt that played a role. we will never know if they could have been solicited another way. it is part of our history. on the question of did it lead to bin laden, i am somewhat skeptical for a couple of reasons.
8:18 pm
a lot of things led to bin laden. there was no detainee who said he is living here. that was one of the reasons of theirs. there were fragments of information that came from a lot of people. one person was interrogated. he was the real 20th hijacker. bora. he went to orlando airport. he want to tora bora. he fled to pakistan and then he went to guantanamo. at guantanamo, he said he was in fact to stand because of his interest in falconry. after a few month they realize he was the same guy. then he was subjected to a pretty severe regime that susan crawford said amounted to torture. he was kept up for 43 days. he was subjected to hot and cold and white noise and lots of
8:19 pm
christina aguilera music at loud volumes and he was discomforted. [laughter] it seems he is the first person who identified the current year -- the courier as being someone who was important in al qaeda from what we can gather. i think there is a public interest in having a 6000 page report that the intelligence committee has done. there is a 300 page summary that is out there. the cia is trying to compose a response to it. i think it is in the public interest for us to know to what extent is whether these methods are ethical, were they efficacious. it also takes is in great detail into the successful search for the leader of al qaeda in iraq.
8:20 pm
>> the woman we met early we see her there. a jordanian doctor pulled the tor who lookedoco like he was with the cia, he fooled the americans. let's see excerpt number three. [video clip] >> he finds his way to pakistan and disappears. somebody expected him of being an informant most likely. nobody knew anything for three months. suddenly he is back on the radar screen.
8:21 pm
he is now beginning to trade the number two member of al qaeda.-- treat the number two leader of al qaeda. the place goes crazy. even the white house gets briefed. he is going to take his right to number two or number one. the meeting has to take place in a place where the cia can completely control the environment and becomes the cia base at khost. they come up with a plan to get inside here without being detected. the problem is that nobody in the cia had ever met with him.
8:22 pm
they made arrangements for him to come into the base without being checked because they were afraid someone might recognize him and his identity compromised. >> [indiscernible] [end video clip] >> that story was told by the triple agents about that. he is a well-known newspaper men. was this just a case where you could not get an official to tell the story? >> yes. later in the sequence others will speak about it.
8:23 pm
what we talked about before, i cannot get access to some of the people who were around right the final years or so. nobody in our film was directly involved with the khost operation. those i wanted to talk to. >> some of the people, including the women, had spoke about jennifer matthews. we just saw a still of her. she was killed in that blast. >> she played a very integral role in the fight against al qaeda. >> the reason we focus on khost is when i started this so may people told me you cannot underestimate the impact of khost psychologically on the cia. >> the setback. >> it became personal. they lost some of their own.
8:24 pm
there is an indication to seek justice.-- was a determination to seek justice. >> does that work in your narrative too? every story needs a good story arc in the cia is closing in on bin laden and they got beheaded -- the head of al qaeda in iraq and then this major setback. it is a strong part of the real story. >> absolutely. one of the female cia analysts says the great irony is she's been 15 years of her life trying to find bin laden and bin laden killed her. this is a woman with three kids and with a very rising career at the agency. the portrait of her in "zero dark 30" is extremely misleading. she's me to be an idiot who is stuck in the cold war. it was an unfair betrayl.--
8:25 pm
unfair portrayal. in this film, she's given her due. the stakes were certainly made. this is a more accurate treatment. >> we're about to turn to you for questions. another man who is here, general michael hayden, is in the film as well about khost. he portrays it in a war you are going to have casualties and losses. it is the sad truth that some on our side would die not only on 9/11 or on the obvious battlefields. i will call on anyone he raises their hand. we you will probably get a microphone brought to you. if you do not have questions i will continue. i want to ask you then, in the 16 months from khost to abbottabad, you have about 60 seconds. what is the key there?
8:26 pm
what really moves ahead that takes us to that one place in pakistan? >> there are a lot of keys along the way. let me try to lay it out briefly. they have an alias. kuwaiti is the father. there were several million. he was the courier working for bin laden. sometime in 2007 we get the real name. sayed is a john smith name. he is not a kuwaiti. he is a pakistani. that is twice the size of california. it is something that it is not great. in 2010, this guy makes a phone call to someone in the gulf. the content leads the agency to
8:27 pm
believe that this guy is still in al qaeda. the city is about several million people. he is practicing careful security. he takes the battery out. there's no way to track him. they have to put people into the city and eventually track and back 2.5 hours away to the city of abbottabad. what surprised them was the mysterious third family he was living in the compound. they began to think it might be osama bin laden. in august of 2010, they go to president obama and say we seem to have a good potential lead on osama bin laden. khost has just happened. khost was december 30, late december 2009. there was no great excitement in the oval office. the last really good lead took some cia officers dying.
8:28 pm
clearly this was a good lead. then there is the whole agatha christie story about how that lead, how they tried to get a sense of how to make the lead better. there was a debate. at the end of the day when you make the decision under percent there are 100% not there.-- he is either 100% there or 100% not there. the analysts were saying 40% or 80%. it is an interesting case of presidential decision-making. the stakes were lower. if you think about president kennedy's decision in the cuban missile crisis, he made an extremely mature decision in a difficult circumstance. you can say the same thing about president obama. it is easy in retrospect to say this is the decision because you know the outcome.
8:29 pm
there could be civilian casualties.seals taken hostage. they plan for every eventuality. one of the reasons why there were an precise in the immediate aftermath. they have not really prepared themselves for success. it is a classic case of presidential decision-making. do not forget that his security advisers were on either side of the issue. >> in your book, do you dwell on that and take of the decision- making issue? >> we all know the outcome. i was hoping to do that. it was my intention initially to do that. it is hard to put drama in that
8:30 pm
because we all know what happens. it did not work. it is funny. when you make these films, you have to follow your access and course of the movie. the film is exhaustive. we do not have all the information on this. there are a lot of big gaps. a few little clues. we don't really know. that is something we will find out over the years. >> anymore questions, otherwise we will go on.
8:31 pm
abbottabad, how is it handled in the film question mark with what -- in the film? number four. [video clip] ♪ >> the hunt from the courier to bin laden makes complete sense to me. it was based on all of the years of experience in a tightknit group of people who really cared
8:32 pm
about this and supported each other. we invented the technique that works. it is the technique that got bin laden in the end. >> i got a call from a former colleague. he said, turn on the news. i was at home. turn on the news, the president is going to make an announcement. i had a feeling that it had been a good day at the office. >> good evening. >> finally, it is him. they got him. they got him finally. that was really something. [end video clip] >> isn't that terrific? all of you know where you were.
8:33 pm
we see a lot of the old, everybody we met in the movie, saying where they were when they got the news and how they reacted. let me come to you on this. that little bit of video we saw of osama bin laden like an old man in a blanket watching wheel of fortune or something -- >> he's watching one of his own videos. >> wow. what did you think of the decision u.s. government agencies to release very little of what they found in the abbottabad home? >> that is the answer. i would have loved to see more. the documents are fascinating. if you have never read them, i encourage people to do so. they are available on the internet. i'm sure there's other footage that has not been released.
8:34 pm
>> peter, you got to go there before the house was leveled by pakistani authorities. it was controlled by pakistani intelligence. you went there first. you must have expected hitler's bunker. >> i was working on osama bin laden for a long time. i was the only outside worker to get inside the compound. they must have known they were going to demolish it. i did not know that. i thought it might be like visiting hitler's bunker after world war ii. it really was not. he was living in a suburban compound, surrounded by his three wives and a dozen kids and grandkids. he was certainly not living large. there is no air conditioning. there's very little heating. people were sleeping on beds that were basically bits of cardboard put together. they were growing their own vegetables and raising their own
8:35 pm
chickens and cows and vegetables. it was very self-sufficient. they did not have to go out very much. for the world's most wanted man, it was not a bad life. he was there five and a half years. he was surprised. he thought he was safe. we now know, there has been a 300 page report by the pakistani commission. there's more detail about what he was doing that night. he told his family that as soon as he heard the helicopter crash that they have arrived. he understood what was happening. there was no moon that night. there's no electricity in the building or the neighborhood. >> he did not try to set up defensive action. >> he had no plan b. when people look at the compound they were worried there would be tunneled out. the water table was very high. would there be a safe room?
8:36 pm
they had a sense of what it looked like from the outside but not inside. i was able to retrace the steps of the seals that night. it was interesting to see the physical evidence of what happened. there was a huge metal door almost the size up to ceiling here that separates the second and third for where he lived. seals blew through that door. they ran up the stairs and killed one of his sons. bin laden is living on the third floor. there was another big metal door that had not been blown through because bin laden poked his head out and closed it behind him. then you go into the room where he died that was relatively small and i could see that somebody has shot in such a way that there was a big blood spots on the ceiling. there are different narratives about what happened but a lot of commonality. bin laden had 15 minutes to surrender.
8:37 pm
he didn't. he had two weapons but he did not pick them up. the wives try to intervene. the seals moved in. this is the consensus version. there is a dispute about who killed him and at what point. that is probably too arcane to get in here. i do not think we are going to have a particularly good answer to that. it was a confusing situation for the seals. it is a firefight. there was a of adrenaline pumping.-- a lot of adrenaline pumping. witness accounts can differ. there's more commonality than differences. >> have you concluded whether it was just a kill mission? is there some circumstance in which they would have taken him captive? >> yes. if someone surrenders, it is a war crime to kill them. >> hands up? >> he did not surrender
8:38 pm
conspicuously. when the helicopter crashes in your house, it is a loud event. if you want to surrender you have 15 minutes to do so. he did not. he said that he wanted to die in the struggle. at the end, he did not want to end up in guantanamo. he chose to die essentially. >> your big decision as a filmmaker, not to attempt what we call a tick tock of how that raid went down. did you think of having that and decided not to? >> of course i did. when we began i thought that is the obvious piece at the end. >> there had been a tv documentary last year. and of course, "zero dark thirty." maybe he thought it was already covered. >> i would only do it if i could
8:39 pm
do it better. when i make these films, i used to make "frontline." those are investigative films. they would have that. they would have the question if he would have surrendered or not. this is a movie. i made a decision a few years ago to make documentaries that appeal to the widest possible audience. that means at the end of the movie you have to have a strong ending. if i did not have the great stuff that we needed to really advance the story somehow and make people feel like you're watching something they have never seen before, i was not going to do it. the khost material became so good. the other thing that was so interesting is the point of view became that of the people who have been hunting bin laden going way back to the mid-90s.
8:40 pm
a lot of them were not involved in the final -- >> you wanted to get their reaction. >> none of them were high-fiving or cheering at the end. they all had this melancholy reaction. that is why there is a cello going underneath the final graphics. it is intentional. it creates the sense that this was a long, very difficult, very painful chapter in our country's history but also in the lives of the characters we come to know. that is how it played. eventually it worked. we were able to do it rather elegantly without having to do a tick tock of the raid. >> it was elegant. there is someone with a question. thank you. >> hi. in your reporting, did you
8:41 pm
uncover any new information or speculation about the 15 minutes? people trying to defend him? there seems to be a hole. >> he thought what protected him was the position in pakistan where he was. >> 15 minutes. he doesn't do anything? >> it is impossible to interview him now. it is not clear. it must have been confusing. it must've been surprising. you cannot see anything. your opposition can see somewhat with the night vision goggles. one anecdote i thought was interesting is he told, and i confirmed in the pakistani report -- the last words we know he spoke was "don't turn on the light," which he told his wife. the natural thing was to turn the light on.
8:42 pm
she did not know the electricity was down. >> he was thinking, do not give up our location? >> he was cognizant that this was not a visit from the local police man. >> a gentleman not far from there. >> one day the wives will speak. >> you have got living witnesses. >> the wives spoke to pakistani interrogators. the cia tried to speak with them. there are very few things the pakistanis and americans agree on. the hostility of bin laden's wives is one of them. [laughter] >> my question is did you request access to the helmet cam video? >> my understanding is that there was no helmet cam. for the precise reason that people like you would be asking for footage forever. this is what i was told.
8:43 pm
there was no helmet cam. >> there's one interesting thing. we are in a new era of warfare. it was revealed. the bin laden raid is a tactical operation at the end of the day. the president was watching in real time. it is the first time in our history where that is the case. there was a stealth drone. sitting in the situation room you could see this thing unfold in real time. admiral mullen, that i interviewed for the book, was very concerned that somebody, if things started going wrong, that somebody in the situation room was start to intervene on a tactical operation on the other side of the world. that did not happen. you could easily imagine. we have the capacity for the commander-in-chief to watch a tactile operation unfold on the other side of the world. it is something we have never seen.
8:44 pm
>> perhaps give orders right there, right then. a different level of that is the unmanned, pilotless vehicles, the robots we are going to have. we may be dependent on the real- time cameras. >> another question out there. >> thank you. one thing if i readthe abbottabad commission report correctly that surprised me was that shaikh mohammed was very much involved with the family of the courier. if that is true, it is interesting. here is a guy he was interrogated perhaps more than anybody else that was at guantanamo. what do you make of that? >> there is a mention i think of
8:45 pm
ksm being in touch with people from captivity? >> my understanding was that was the red line despite all the interrogation techniques. ksm made it clear he would never speak about that. >> just a few minutes left. we will move a bit more rapidly. i will get you for sure. promise. high impact when it is a later question. >> chad sweet. former cia. what i thought was brilliant was the dna operation by the medic to get affirmation of who was in the compound. what is hard to understand is why he was why he was not exfiltrated when the operation went down?
8:46 pm
>> i think it was brilliant on two ways. it is ethically dubious for them to be pirating doctors. >> we're talking about the doctor who helped set up the raid. >> he had no idea he was involved with the bin laden operation. he had no way to know. he thought he was being recruited to vaccinate people in a particular neighborhood and he is working for the cia. they never succeeded in getting dna from the bin laden compound. >> you wrote last week that he is still in prison in pakistan. >> he is not a hero. jonathan pollard is still in the united states prison. it does not matter if friendly countries are spying, they are still spies. the pakistanis had every right to lock up someone who was spying for someone else.
8:47 pm
the reason i think it is ethically dubious to put it mildly is in pakistan people are beingio workers are routinely assassinated because of the view that they work for the cia. this is a common urban legend. we added to this. it is true. the cia has employed people to do vaccination programs. now it is true. before it was an urban myth. it was a creative idea. you can applaud that. at the end of the day, the cia abhorred the idea of using journalists of cover. there are certain categories saying they would not use. i think one of them should be people engaged in medical activity. >> a lot if you are in the intelligence field. it is perfectly understandable that someone in the cia wants to be good to this doctor and get him out, similar to the ways israelis demand that pollard be
8:48 pm
released. >> i am a former army psychiatrist. i am interested in national security. a common question. the power of documentary filmmaking -- "the invisible war," the documentary on military sexual trauma. now your film. "the invisible war" has achieved unprecedented policy changes that are being debated on the hill for legislative changes. with respect to your work and the sisterhood and bringing out the stories of these courageous women analysts, do you have any policy aspirations with respect to your work? is telling their story enough? >> it depends entirely on the film. kirby, really he just got into
8:49 pm
that subject not knowing at all what was the tip of the iceberg. it has taken over his life. the woman who got the interview with snowden, the film that she will make has an account of this but will -- >> but will portray snowden as a hero? >> i don't predict that. >> i do not want to say that. i think it will give his perspective and depth. >> we will decide. >> figure it out for yourself. i made a film called "ghosts of rwanda" of those in the white house or the un when the genocide happened and why they did nothing to stop the killing. it was impossible not to feel
8:50 pm
like i was on a mission making that film. the reason people were talking to me were to try to prevent similar officials from making the mistake that they made. someone in the bush administration, during darfur, they cannot believe what people have been through. they're not going to let happen on their watch. with "manhunt," it was different. i spent most of my life living overseas. an american based in london for on most 20 years. coming back to the states a few years ago i felt like i was stunned by the divisiveness of our debate. also, the night of the raid,
8:51 pm
everyone was cheering and then it went away. i knew enough. i have been around the world enough to know there was a dark, painful history that ultimately led to abbottabad. i knew we can learn from the people who were part of that history. their stories would be compelling on a human level. peter said did you know there were a lot of women? in the agency who have been tracking bin laden since 1995. i did not. that was something i wanted to portray. that is a human story. >> only have about two minutes up. you are one of the best known analysts. where do we stand? bin laden has been killed. is al qaeda finished? are they more than just the bin
8:52 pm
laden core? >> i think al qaeda is going the way of the vhs tape. they have not conducted an attack on the united states since 9/11 or in the west since 2005. almost all their top leaders are dead. we are not playing whack a mole. we have completely destroyed the central al qaeda organization. there are maybe three or four leaders left. the number two is dead. al qaeda in the arabian peninsula, it their number two is dead. they are under in enormous pressure. bin laden, as an ideology, continues. there'll always be some takers. there were always be some disaffected young man somewhere who thinks this is a solution. since 9/11, 21 americans have
8:53 pm
been killed in the united states by jihadi terrorists. that is not a lot of people. each of those is an individual tragedy. if we have this conversation in 2002 or 2003, because a lot of the work of a lot of people in this room including jose rodriguez and general hayden and others who are interviewed in this film and others who are not. >> i did want to fit this in. are you not adversarial enough almost by instinct? some of us journalists are. we meet someone to work in the cia. we know he's not telling us everything. are you skeptical enough? >> about what? >> about the story, the way they tell it. are you setting them up as heroes? >> i do not know. i do not see myself as an adversarial person. i don't think that is particularly beneficial. i have interviewed everybody
8:54 pm
involved on both sides, including bin laden and many leaders of al qaeda. i think was more useful just to hear what they had to say. bin laden declared war on cnn in 1997 in an interview i produced. >> on america. >> imagine in 1937, if the japanese high commander went on and said, we are planning to attack the united states and if pearl harbor would have turned out differently. we are not in the business --i do not see adversarial being a useful trait in all of this. >> did you try to leave us with a feeling, with the cello and all that, that the war is not over, that is going to happen again one of your main characters says? >> it is such an interesting point about how you tell the stories and interact with sources.
8:55 pm
i do not take an adversarial approach. some people may not like films. i try to get into the world of the people who stories i'm trying to tell. here is what i have tried to do. if god forbid there is some other major attack at some point we will all, instinctively, want it to be sorted out. there will be people whose names we do not know, and offices that are hidden away somewhere, making the decisions on our behalf about how to conduct that war. by telling the stories of those who were there at this time, it allows us to better understand how our government works. we talk about openness -- we can tell stories without revealing anything that is classified. it is important.
8:56 pm
that is the way the general public understand how the systems work. there are ways of doing it -- through documentaries, through longform, there are people hungry to tell the stories. i will give you my card. [laughter] >> please watch "manhunt" tonight at 9:15. also on hbo go. nominated for two primetime emmys. please thank peter bergen and greg barker. [applause] [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2013] >> on the next "washington journal," a focus on syria and foreign affairs. the former u.s. ambassador to syria will talk about his experiences with the assad regime and why he thinks military intervention will not help the country. .hen a roundtable discussion
8:57 pm
we will discuss potential action in syria and its impact on the obama administration, its allies, and countries in the middle east. "washington journal," live every day at 7:00 a.m. eastern with , on c-span. democratic caucus chair representative hobby or becerra is our guest this week on "newsmakers." he will be discussing u.s. options in syria, immigration policy, the budget, and other issues. you can watch "newsmakers" live sunday at 10:00 a.m. eastern and again at 6:00 p.m. eastern. on sunday, watched secretary of state john kerry's testimony about proposed military action
8:58 pm
in syria before the house foreign relations committee. here is a preview. [video clip] if we do -- i nothing, what ise likelihood, in your judgment, that assad will use chemical to turn the routine tide of this civil war? >> i think the likelihood is very high. he would use them again. >> mr. secretary? >> i agree completely. i might even put it at 100%. you should go check the intel on it. i think you'll be convinced. i would say probably 100%. >> mr. secretary, if you are right, that it is 100% we will see these weapons used routinely in this civil war to turn the tide if we do nothing, what is the probability that such weapons will also then get into
8:59 pm
the hands of hezbollah and other elements supporting the assad , and thus, perhaps, proliferate in the region against friends and foes alike? >> i cannot give you that probability. i just do not know what it is. i do know this -- there are three principal supporters of assad, and the rest of the world is in horror of what is happening. the three principal supporters are iran, hezbollah, and russia. if iran and hezbollah are allowed to both see him stay in so with thell as do use of chemical weapons, that is extraordinarily dangerous for jordan, israel, lebanon, and our interests. >> you can watch the house committee hearing with secretary of state kerry, defense secretary hagel, and the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff general martin dempsey.
9:00 pm

92 Views

info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on