Democracy Now! June 4, 2002

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Democracy Now! June 4, 2002
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As India and Pakistan hover on the brink of war, writer and activist Arundhati Roy talks about life under the nuclear shadow. And Afghans begin the trek to Kabul to select a new, transitional government. Today, a look at the ongoing US military campaign and the fragile process it claims to protect. Finally, His Brothers Keeper: President Bush announces his plans to buy back Floridas Oil Drilling Leases. Environmentalists applaud, but some wonder if its just a ploy to boost his brother, Governor Jeb Bush, in this falls elections. All that and more coming up. 9:01-9:06 Headlines: 9:06-9:07 One Minute Music Break MUSIC 6: MONEY DON'T MAKE IT RIGHT - One World Tribe Unity and Diversity ( 814/451-love) 20: FREEFALL - Laurie Anderson Bright Red / Tightrope (Warner Bros. Records) 40: THE EMPEROR'S GOT NO CLOTHES - Earthdriver No One's Slave (136-32 productions) End: EQUAL RIGHTS - Anthony B.9:07-9:20 UNDER THE NUCLEAR SHADOW: AS INDIA AND PAKISTAN FALTER ON THE BRINK OF WAR, A CONVERSATION WITH INDIAN WRITER ARUNDHATI ROY India and Pakistan are balanced on a knifes edge between small-scale skirmishes and all-out nuclear war. Indian Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee and Pakistani President General Pervez Musharraf sat across the table from each other Monday at a regional security summit in Kazakhstan. Musharraf challenged India to agree to unconditional talks to avert war, but he also blamed five decades of conflict on Indias refusal to let the Kashmiri people decide which country they want to join The Indian Prime Minister refused the offer, saying Musharraf had kept none of his promises over the past six months, and cross-border infiltration by militants into Kashmir has only increased. As both sides struggled to gain the diplomatic high ground, Indian and Pakistani troops exchanged fire along the line of control which divides Kashmir, killing eight civilians. Not surprisingly, many civilians are upset at the diplomatic maneuvering of their leaders while the killing continues. But most dont know much about nuclear war and what it would mean for them. Booker prize-winning author Arundhati Roy, who lives in New Delhi, does know a little about nuclear war. She writes in the British Observer: If I go away and everything and every one, every friend, every tree, every home, every dog, squirrel and bird that I have known and loved is incinerated, how shall I live on? While we wait for rain, for football, for justice, on TV the old generals and the eager boy anchors talk of first strike and second strike capability, as though they're discussing a family board game. My friends and I discuss Prophecy, the film of the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the dead bodies choking the river, the living stripped of their skin and hair, we remember especially the man who just melted into the steps of the building and we imagine ourselves like that, as stains on staircases. Guest: Arundhati Roy, activist and Booker prize-winning author living in New elhi. Her books include, "The God of Small Things," for which she won the Booker Prize in 1997, "The Common Good," "The Cost of Living," and "Power Politics." Contact: E-MAIL: CONTACT:,, 9:20-9:21 One Minute Music Break 9:21-9:40 AS AFGHANS PREPARE TO SELECT THEIR FUTURE GOVERNMENT, A LOOK AT US OPERATIONS IN AFGHANISTAN More than 100 US soldiers swept through an alleged Al Qaeda training base in eastern Afghanistan yesterday, blowing up four cave complexes but finding no fighters and little information. The military said the mission was intended to discourage Al Qaeda and Taliban forces from crossing into the country from Pakistan. But some officials hinted the operation was more than anything intended as a show of American force before Afghan regional leaders meet next week to select a new national government. US officials say members of Al Qaeda and the Taliban may be plotting attacks to disrupt that meeting, known as a Loya Jirga.But some fear the Loya Jirga process has already been interrupted - and not only by the Taliban. The Loya Jirga has been marked by controversy and violence. There have been repeated reports of local power holders intimidating or bribing rivals to withdraw their candidacies. Eight delegates to the Loya Jirga were killed in May. Meanwhile, interim leader Hamid Karzai won the support on Sunday of enough key allies to stay on as head of the government for the next two years. For days the interim cabinet and warlords from across the country had been haggling over the make-up of the government that will emerge from the Loya Jirga. All backed Karzai as the future leader. The backroom deals extending his rule suggest that many of the most important decisions for the Loya Jirga are being made in private, before the 1,500 delegates even arrive in Kabul. Guest: Soraya Paikan, Chair of the Afghan Women Lawyers and Professionals Association, Member of the Loya Jirga & International Lawyer, Mazar-e-Sharif. Soraya Paikan was Professor of International Law at Balkh University in Mazar-e-Sharif, until the Taliban took over. At this point, she went underground. She eventually fled Afghanistan to Pakistan, taking 5 of her 6 daughters with her. Guest: Sonali Kolhatkar, vice-president, Afghan Womens Mission and host and co-producer of the Morning Show on Pacifica station KPFK in Los Angeles Video Subject Heading: Rebuilding Afghanistan 9:40-9:41 One Minute Music Break 9:41-9:58 POSING AS AN ENVIRONMENTALIST: BUSHS PLAN TO BUY BACK FLORIDA OIL DRILLING LEASES ANGERS CALIFORNIANS The Bush administration last Wednesday unveiled a $235 million plan to buy back the development rights for offshore oil reserves along Floridas Gulf Coast from several petroleum companies. President Bush announced the decision in a public appearance with his brother, Governor Jeb Bush. The buyout will prevent further development of offshore drilling operations in Floridas coastal waters. Many environmentalists praised the plan to protect the Florida shoreline. But activists in heavily-Democratic California have been pushing for a buyout in their own state for years. They say President Bushs buoyout in Florida is a ploy to help his brother as he begins his re-election campaign. State officials urged the federal government to stop new drilling under 36 leases held by oil companies, but the Clinton administration extended several leases that were set to expire. California state agencies and environmental groups filed a lawsuit in response, arguing that local authorities should be allowed to review the leases for compliance with existing laws. The state won the suit in federal court. But the Bush administration appealed the ruling. Oral arguments are set to begin in San Francisco on Monday. GUEST: Rachel Binah (pronounced BEE-nah), environmental activist. She is a member of the DNC and former chairperson of the Environmental Caucus for the California Democratic Party. She owns a bed-and-breakfast inn in Mendocino, CA. GUEST: Sara Wan (pronounced SAH-ra), chairperson of the California Coastal Commission.Contact: Guest: Mitch Perry, reporter and assistant news director at WMNF radio in Tampa Florida contact: 9:58-9:59 Outro and Credits

Date Recorded on: 
June 4, 2002
Date Broadcast on: 
June 4, 2002
Item duration: 
59 min.
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WPFW; Amy Goodman, host. June 4, 2002
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