tv Fareed Zakaria GPS CNN October 3, 2021 7:00am-8:00am PDT
. this is "gps," the global public square. welcome to all of you in the united states and around the world. i'm fareed zakaria, coming to you live. on the program today, a pivot takes a big step forward. >> we will examine what the u.s., australia, uk security pact tells us about america and australia's focus. and where is america pivoting from? europe, of course. where the angela merkel chancellorship may diminish the
standing even further. all of that with our all-star panel ian bremmer and anne-marie slaughter. also, where in the world is sahel? the region that divides the sa vannia grasses north to the south. you will be hearing all about it. it's the new hot spot of jihadi terrorists. we'll tell you all you need to know. also, this is going to serve as a wake-up call. >> sanjay gupta on what he and we all learned from the long and difficult fight against covid-19. first, here's "my take." the troubles of a company that nobody ever heard of now have people worried about another global economic crisis. evergrande is a property developer in china with the dubious distinction of being the
world's most indebted real estate company, with outstanding loans of more than $300 billion. for the moment, at least, it appears unlikely they will upend the economy but it speaks of the fragility in china's economy. china's private debt, by government and corporations, is now 200%, by far and away the highest in the world for any developing nation. china's fundamental growth trajectory is slowing. its export driven model have become much harder to sustain as wages have risen, making it competitive with other countries. meanwhile, it is not going fast enough to replace the export boom. plus, the assault on the technology sector will probably slow down the previously seen explosive growth in that area. and overshoulding all of this is demographics. china is growing old and its citizens having fewer children.
fertility dropped by a stunning 20% last year, despite the government's efforts to reverse the one-child policy and encourage people to have more children. looking around, one sees problems in most major economies. german chancellor angela merkel is about to leave office after 16 years of steady, wise leadership. in an age of populist drama, anger, she's been an oasis of calm. but she let many of germany's economic problems fester. the country has been starved of public investment, leading to a decay of its infrastructure in almost every year, germany's energy policies are a strange patchwork of new and old, banning nuclear and thus getting 44% of its electricity from fossil fuels, one of the highest in the european union. and more broadly, germany remains a laggard in the digital
age. it's manufacturing economy dates from the industrial revolution, cars, chemicals and machine tools. in the digital realm, germany boasts only one large company, sap, that is almost 50 years old. and like china, the demographics are demme. for the first time its population actually shrank. look at japan, india, britain and you will see similar structural weaknesses and fragilities. japan continues to grow at a snail's pace. a few decades ago indians often spoke of overtaking china. today china's economy is more than five times the size of india's. britain will spend the next few years paying the price for brexit as its current fuel crisis demonstrates. and then there is the usa, the unmistakable winner of the past decade has been what richard
shurma termed the comeback nation in an insightful foreign affairs essay. the u.s. recovered steadily from the 2008 crisis and never looked back, evening thing for the pandemic-reduced recession. today amidst talk of decline, most americans would be shocked to hear their country has been the same share of global gdp as it did 40 years ago, 25%. its companies dominate the world like never before. seven of the ten top companies of the world by market capitalization are american. the u.s. continues to lead in most of the industries of the future, from biep owe technology to nano technology to artificial intelligence. the dollar is dominant as a global reserve currency like no other in history, being used in almost 90% of international transactions. and it has the healthiest demographics of any of the world's five biggest economies, thanks to immigration. on some gut level, americans
seem to understand this. gallup asked people about their lives to determine what share of the population is, "thriving." that nuk hit 15% this summer, the highest in the survey. in january 2020 90% of americans said they were satisfied with their lives, another all-time high since the question was asked first in 1979. it has subsequently dropped, presumably because of the pandemic. but that funny picture is not what it looks like in washington. america's weakness is its politics. despite our extraordinary structural advantages, political leaders in washington cannot pay the national credit card bills without high drama. they're struggling with infrastructure spending that has been urgently advocated for years, and that a hefty majority of the public supports. congress has not passed a regular budget in 25 years. hundreds of key posts in the
administration lie vacant, with dozens held hostage by senators on totally unrelated issues. and one of our two major parties goated on by its demagogic leader is seeking to disrupt the institutions and norms that ensure free and fair elections in this country, setting things up for a massive political crisis in 2024. america has been dealt the world's best hand by far. as any poker player knows, however, if you play badly, you can still lose everything. go to cnn.com/fareed for a link to my "washington post" column this week, and let's get started. the french ambassador
philippe etienne, as you saw last week, announced his return to washington on twitter on thursday. he had been called back after a new security pact with the uk and australia. the anglo alliance to be a check of china's burgeoning power. now is the u.s. finally pivoting to asia? let me introduce today's all-star panel. richard haass is the president on the council on foreign relations, former director of policy planning at the state department. anne-marie slaughter held that same position. he's now the ceo of the think tank new america. she's the author of an absolutely terrific new book "renewal: from crisis to transformation in our lives, work and politics." and ian bremmer is president of the euro-asia group, a geopolitical risk firm. anne-marie, let me start with you. you have a new book out about
what is urgently needed, renewal, and we will ask everyone to buy it but i will ask about your expertise here. is the pivot to eurasia a good idea? >> fareed, the pivot to asia was misconceived in the start. it was conceived and executed in the obama administration and what was right was to move away from the middle east and to foeblous much more on east asia, also south asia. but it was conceived as a pivot from the atlantic to the pacific. primarily as a military and diplomatic pivot. it should have been a pivot to asia through europe. the europeans have much older and deeper ties in asia than the united states does. if you look at southeast asia, vietnam and laos and cambodia are french colonies. malay lawia and burmer french
colonies, indonesia a dutch colony and now have many citizens of south asian decent. we should have started with europe working not only militarily and politically but economically. of course, china is the eu's biggest trading partner, and even in military terms, the french have 1.6 million french citizens in their south pacific territories, and they have 8,000 troops stationed in the south pacific. they consider that an area of responsibility. so for president biden, who focuses on, you know, alliances of democracy, they really made a fundamental mistake by turning away from europe and china rather than through europe. >> ian bremmer, what about the economic element? this feels like a geopolitical pivot more than an economic pivot. >> that's right. that's the problem here is that the united states had an
opportunity to make this an economic pivot, and the trans-pacific partnership was the avenue to do that. obama wasn't able to get it done. trump left, and biden isn't aligned with it either because it's not popular in the united states. i agree with anne-marie, of course you want to do this through europe but the reality is the europeans, with the sole exception of the french, see asia primarily, even overwhelmingly, through economic and commercial lens. united states policies in asia are overwhelmingly through a broad national security lens and technology lens, american companies versus chinese companies. and the french, the third largest exporter in the world. the united states number one. it's a serious challenge. we're not really aligned with the europeans on asia. and the interesting thing is the asians are really aligned with us. australia really wants that defense pact because they're
angry about the trade war and military hostilities they have with china. india, which has always been neutral about this, really wanted into the quad because of the increase in military tensions changing the game from beijing. so as a consequence, i don't know how we get out of the fact the europeans are feeling really left out of our indio-pac strategy. >> i think the pivot makes some sense. it's widely about china, seen as the main competitor for the united states. ian is right. we haven't mentioned the economic connection. it makes no sense to pivot to asia without joining the trans-pacific partnership. unfortunately there's bipartisan opposition to doing just that. we have not introduced military forces into the region. if we're serious about military
threats to say, taiwan, we have a long way to go to match our capabilities with our commitment. i don't see how we do this through europe, quite honestly. europe has virtually no meaningful military force to introduce in this part of the world and europe largely sees asia and particularly china through the eyes of economic and commercial ties. i think we're going to run into real problems trying to line the europeans up it work with us. losing my voice here fareed, sorry. >> no worries. anne-marie, what about richard point, particularly in light of merkel leaving after 16 years in germany. the europeans don't have the capacity to pro correct any kind of military force without american help. and they don't seem that interested in having a kind of larger world role. they're largely internally eu
focused. is it a fool's errand to try to get europe to play a larger strategic role? >> no, as i just said, the french after the united states have the largest naval experience in the south pacific. if we were going to make a deal with australia and britain, yes, i understand that we had better technology, but we should have included the french in thinking about the south pacific as a strategic arena and the british, particularly now that they're not in the eu, do have military capabilities and, again, deep ties. we included the british so why wouldn't we also include the french? the french are also pushing hard for stronger european defense and europe now realizes they have to do that. but the most important thing is both economically and in terms of technology, we are much stronger when we were working with europe rather than leaving them out. together we're over half the
world's gdp. it's hard to do but, again, biden's the one talking about democracy versus autocracy. he should start with europe. >> we are going to talk when we get back about the place we are pivoting away from that has a tendency to drag the united states back in, like that line in "godfather 3." the middle east, will the middle east pull the u.s. back in when we come back? alka seltzer plus cold relief, dissolves quickly... instantly ready to start working. so you can bounce back fast with alka-seltzer plus. ♪ ♪ mom! mom! every day can be extraordinary with rich, creamy, delicious fage total yogurt.
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affairs" about the similar tarties between trump and president biden's middle east policy. i have written about the same thing. and i want to talk about afghanistan, if you consider that the greater middle east, not going into the iran deal, do you think there is kind of a similarity and strategy because what i wonder about is trump was doing this out of conviction. is biden doing this more out of political necessity? he feels like if he tries to go back into the iran deal, it will trigger a firestorm on the right. if he tries to fire a trigger policy on cuba, will it anger senator mendez, who he needs on these domestic priorities. is that a comparison that's fair to make? >> i think as all inconsistent. the president is focused domestically. he's obviously thinking about
his necesdomestic collisions. some of it is consistent with that, we talked about just getting into trade deals. there's not a lot of support, particularly among the progressives, for that. iran is a complicated case. he wants to get back into agreement but it's not clear if the united states and iran can work out the terms. and if we get back in the agreement, the agreement doesn't cover all of the activity iran does in the middle east beyond its nuclear program and even nuclear restraints are of a limited duration. so i don't think the administration has thought that through, fareed. even the pivot to asia, talking about what i was going to add before i lost my voice there, it's irrelevant to things like climate change. it's a geopolitical pivot at a time when global issues count the most and in no way is it an excuse for mishandling the european dimension. europeans are more important to the middle east than they are to
asia but his handling of the so-called submarine deal with australia from france and everything else, getting out of afghanistan was positively trumpian, unilateral. so i don't really see a coherent foreign policy here. so much of it is being done through a domestic lens and so far, at least, it's not working. >> ian bremmer, do you think joe biden would say, look, my big priority is domestic, and if i can get these two big bills passed, that will do more to renew american power in the world, that will do more to renew american credibility that the system works than any particular maneuver or consultation i made with allies? >> yes, i think he would say that and i happen to agree with it. it doesn't mean we need to actively antagonize or be overly transactional or unilateral towards allies. i agree with richard. we made a bunch of mistakes.
and they're mistakes like how aukus was handled or executing leaving afghanistan. but the point is, america first, to the extent trump had a strategy, that was it. biden, to the except he has a foreign policy policy, it is a u.s. foreign policy for an american and friends middle class. those votes speak to the same issue, which is even if they don't see the world the same way, they're facing the same fund mental constraints as home that an average american agrees, left or right, we don't want to be the world's policemen anymore. we really don't want to be the architect of global trade and we're not sure we want to promote global values because we're not sure what those values are at home. i think trump leaned into it, biden is chafing a bit more against it but the outcomes are more similar than one would think. >> anne marie, we saw richard
haass and ian bremen say that biden claims he was forced into the trans-pacific partnership but he doesn't talk a lot about it anymore. is there a way to make the democratic party, particularly progressives, understand that really fundamentally trade has been very good for the united states? that many more jobs have been lost to technology than to china or to all of these things people talk about? you talk about a little bit about this in the book. the real renewal of the united states is going to come from stuff we do here, not predatory or aggressive trade policy. >> i think that's right. and i think it's a long slog to convince the left of the democratic party to reengage with any kind of trade policy other than protectionism, but i
do think biden is right to start at home. whatever he does, he's got to get these bills through and to prove that he's serious about taking care of people at home, about building a new domestic foundation at home. so to that except, i do think ian is right, richard is right, since obama, there has been a desire across the political spectrum, not in the foreign policy elite but more broadly, to stop being the global policeman. however, where richard is wrong is biden wants to move from being global policeman to being global problem-solver, which trump certainly didn't want. if you look at biden's speech at the u.n. general assembly, almost all of it was focused on those global problems that richard is talking about, and talking about how not only to cooperate with china on things like climate change, but to mobilize lots of different
configurations of democracies to tackle those problems. the last thing i will say is it's not fair to say that biden didn't consult with the europeans about afghanistan. he spent two months consulting but in the end, it wassed a fundamental disagreement about the policy and he decided to do what he thought was right. that was not -- that's very different from trump. that's saying yes, i care about your opinion but it's also saying in the end if i think this is right, i have to do it. >> i care about all of your opinions, but we are out of time. thank you for a terrific panel. next up -- a jihadi gold rush in the sahel. don't know what that is? watch the program when we come back. hey hun hey, get your own vapors
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u.n. sure can. as of august there were 13,000 u.n. personnel deployed to mali. mali and its neighbors are in the midst of a national fight against islamic jihadist, all in the sahel, where the brown of the sahara means the green of the savannah and now the russians may be getting embroiled. joining me now is amy mackinnon, a reporter on foreperson. thank you for joining me. explain to us the place in africa, the sahel right now. you have french forces, german forces. what's going on? >> as you mentioned, the counterterrorism campaign in the
sahel have really been one of the overlooked fronts in the war on terror but now with the war in afghanistan drawing down, it really is emerging to be one of the next crisis points in global efforts to counter terror. in terms of military presence, it's being led by french forces in mali, where they had french bases in the region even after these countries gained their independence. since 2013 france had an operation in mali and neighboring countries in the region to try to push back these terrorist groups. it's not really been a full-throated counterterror campaign like we saw in iraq and afghanistan but to try to contain the spread of these extremist groups in the region who are -- now the groups are allied with al qaeda and the islamic state, to push that back, and as you mention there's an 18,000-strong international u.n. force. the u.s. is also involved there in providing intelligence support for the french forces as
well as logistics. >> and into all of this now has stepped russia. explain the russian activity now in the sahel. >> so routers reported last month the ips interim moment in mali, bearing in mind two coupes in the last year, but they were in talks about sending 1,000 wagner fighters to support them with security. wainge wai wainger in wagner, we don't really have a name of what it is but private utility companies, mercenaries. it is ostensibly private but we know it's linked to the russian defense and russian security forces. the wagner group has been popping up across africa from sudan, libya, central african republic and now potentially mali. wherever they've gone, it's never been good news for the local populations.
they have been accused of horrific atrocities against the local population. so as much as there's a deep security crisis in mali, nobody's really expecting, if these wagner forces do go in, that they're going to improve things any time soon. >> it seems to me the wagner is the way the russians involved themselves in parts of ukraine, where they have plausible deniability it's official troops but still effectively, they are just that. why is russia sending all of these troops now? what the strategy behind it? >> you hit upon it, it's plausible deniability, so if things go wrong like they often have for the wagner group, the russians can wash their hands of it. but they're a very light and nimble force that they can send in. they're very opportunistic, like they see an opening like in mali now, they send in these forces as a kind of wedge and from there to expand their footprint.
on traditional metrics of international affairs, russia is not a major player in africa, does not have major economic ties to the region, not a major aid player, not a lot of trade links. but what they've been able to do with these nimble and light forces, they've been able to magnify their presence with effect by elite cooptions by making themselves indispensable to these non-democratic players and expanding russia's influence in these countries. it's nimble but it has proven to be very effective. >> and is it always in opposition to western strategy? at the end of the day, russia surely has an interest in not having terrorism just like the west. >> i don't think they necessarily go in to intentionally put a stick in the eye of the west but i think they're there with their own goals. it's expanding russia's influence in the continent, it's projecting great power and looking to get access to
africa's lucrative international resources. and it's looking to get things in its pocket on votes of things that russia really cares about like syria and crimea. but mali, it will be interesting to see how it plays out because this is really the first time in africa we've seen a potential wagner, potential russian presence, really going toe to toe with potential western forces in the country. france has said a wagner presence there not compatible with its forces, so it will be interesting to see how this plays out. >> thank you. that was a real fascinating report from a place we don't know enough about. >> thank you. next on "gps," dr. sanjay gupta on what we have learned from the covid-19 pandemic. we. ♪ [band plays] ♪ a place where everyone lives life well-protected. ♪
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the w.h.o. announced on social media it was investigating a cluster of illnesses in wuhan, china. since then more than 225 million cases of covid-19 have been reported globally, along with an astoundingly tragic death toll. almost 5 million of our fellow human lives have been cut short by this virus. so what have we learned amidst all of this suffering and tragedy? here to tell us is cnn's chief medical correspondent, dr. sanjay gupta. sanjay acted as a doctor and journalist when reporting these brand-new book "world war c: lessons from the covid-19 pandemic and how to prepare for the next one." season jay, always great to have you on. >> thank you for having me. >> the big question i think we started out trying to understand right at the start of the pandemic but we still, i think, don't have a great answer for, the united states was supposed to be on paper the best-prepared
country in the world for pandemic. johns hopkins university, great medical school, puts out a list, and if you look at it on paper, the u.s. had these incredible assets, and yet, you point out, it's hard to contest the argument that the united states has probably handled the worst of any major country. why? >> this is the most fascinating part of it. and there was a lot of solace in the initial days of the pandemic because of the reports you mentioned. who is the most prepared for the pandemic? the united states, as you point out, always ranked very high. i think there were several things that sort of happened. one is that this idea wealth buys health, that is part of the idea that made the u.s. so high on the list, they had plenty of resources. but they made it clear wealth buys health if you're leaning into the major public health measures that can control a pandemic. what ends up happening in a
country so used to having resources, they say wait, look, we're going to wake for the knockout punch, home run hit, in this case the vaccine. we won't be bothered as much with things that don't present the disease that don't have our enormous wealth. the second thing is the risk factors for this disease ended up being likely the diseases of affluence, obesity, heart disease, diabetes, all diseases you will commonly see in wealthy countries and those were really associated with much, much worse outcomes. and there's one final point, and this one fascinated me, i spent a long time talking to the creators of an experiment k5u8d the moral machine experiment, and they tried to figure out what and who do we value in a culture and how does that change based on who the culture is? and you find, for example, in a lot of asian countries elderly people are well revered and respected even after retirement.
not so much the case in places like the united states. you retire, you may be dispensed with from your personal life, even professional life. if this was a disease that primarily affected adolescents, for example, would our response have been different in some way? these are all lessons, the book was a lot about the science, but the human behavior that you're asking about really fascinated me for now, because we're still in it, but also for the future. what does it mean? >> what have you learned about china and covid? there was an interesting section. it seems you persuaded me pretty conclusively there was a cover-up, that the chinese government did know earlier than they let on that this was going to be bad and they tried to prepare themselves before telling the world. but with regard to where this came from, you still seem to be kind of where the intelligence community is .
>> a large majority of these is from a national emersion. a lot like sars. if it was clear to the government this did not originate in a lab, why not just open it up and let them do a forensics on the lab. they say how can this have leaked from a lab, the virus was never here? that's a good argument but you need to prove it. the fact there was a continuous cover-up i think made people suspicious. i have to tell you, fareed, i don't think it matters that much. leaks happen and happen here in the united states. smallpox leaked in a lab. narwa taught us a huge lesson. but this swapping from human
animals happen all the time on a harmless basis. but now and then you get one that's a problem, we need to cut down on that as well. >> that's a tough one because, as you know, in poor countries, a lot of places there's no refrigeration. you go to africa and parts of india and they explain the wet markets are the only way you can get regular fresh food. >> that's right. and it's such a part of the culture as well, i know. because sars we covered that and everyone said okay, we're not going to do wet markets anymore and they're still obviously there. so is it an investment in refrigeration, things like that? is it investment in surveillance testing? people will put a price tag on it, they said for $10 billion a year, we can make america pandemic proof. we will not deal with the pandemic again. $30 a citizen. that's not a lot of money considering we just spent $2 trillion on a covid relief bill. it's a real interesting thing. will we evaluate in prevention,
invest in it? you take good care of your health, what inspires you to do that? can we get that same mentality in the country overall in terms of prevention. >> i take good care of myself because i listen to you and i'm inspired by you. sanjay, thank you for being on. >> what an honor, thank you. when the pandemic hit, italy had one of the worst performances in the world. it's now leading the world out of the pandemic. what changed? i'll tell you when we come back. mom! mom! every day can be extraordinary with rich, creamy, delicious fage total yogurt. before we talk about tax-smart investing, what's new? -well, audrey's expecting... -twins! grandparents! we want to put money aside for them, so...change in plans. alright, let's see what we can adjust. ♪ we'd be closer to the twins. change in plans. okay. mom, are you painting again? you could sell these.
now for "the last look." one of the questions we explore often on this show is how to handle populism. how can mainstream politicians governor amidst a tide of emotion and anger? we found an unlikely role model in an unexpected place. long before donald trump entered the white house, italy was led by the swaggering businessman silvio berlusconi. in 2018 a new italian populous came to power in a coalition that embraced policies from the left and the right. former trump adviser steve bannon hailed it as a model that can sweep the globe. in fact, this anti-eu populist coalition would last barely a year. under a new government, italy went on to bundle the pandemic
with one of the worst death rates in europe. then in nfebruary 2021, somehow its leadership fell to mario draggy, a technocrat that famously steered the eu out of the financial crisis as head of the european central bank. now prime minister draggy is steering italy out of the coronavirus crisis. he accelerated the coronavirus vaccine rollout and put children back in school. with astrazeneca falling behind on vaccine deliveries, he got the eu to play hard ball and took the extraordinary step of blocking a vaccine shipment bound for australia. the move raised concerns about vaccine nationalism but it was done under eu rules and showed italians that their government and the eu was working for them. next drag yi turned his attention to the economy. the previous government collapsed over how to spend its $250 billion share of eu
recovery funds. drag yi, a political independent, presented his own plan and won overwhelming approval in parliament. woven into the plan were a number of long overdo reforms to fix italy's economy. but drag gi still has to wrangle a fractured lecture to carry them out. his first target to overhaul the country's judicial system, which is notoriously slow and puts a damper on activities. and drag gi's already set his sights on tax evasion and foreign competition. compare this to emanuel macron, a breath of fresh air not tied to any establish party or tradition but clearly a liberal in the political sense, he tried to stifle the economy, made it easier to fire workers so companies are less likely to hire them in the first place,
slashed taxes on the wealthy for entrepreneurship. but moves like that with his haughty air tagged him for the rich. he failed to build support for his policies and sparked a ferocious backlash, the yellow vest movement. macron was forced to scrap a gas hike and buy protesters off with subsidies. when covid hit, he hit things like pench reform and the man who vowed to rein in the bloated welfare state embraced big spending to keep the economy afloat. he covered people's lost wages and handedouts on everyone from college students to farmers. the economists observed macron has turned into something of a closet socialist. macron can still flex his technocratic muscles from time to time and is effective. he made headlines in july by instituting vaccine passes for many leisure activities in france. and who should quickly follow
but mario draghi. then he took one of the most judicial steps the world has seen, requiring vaccine passes for all workers. we will see if he can maintain i his popularity, carry out his vision for indiaand reclaim pops from taking power. if he can succeed, he will be truly worth the nickname he earned during the financial crisis, super mario. thanks to all of you for being part of my program this week. i will see you next week. every day can be extraordinary with rich, creamy, delicious fage total yogurt.
we're better cooks... better neighbors... hi. i've got this until you get back. better parents... and better friends. no! no! that's why comcast works around the clock constantly improving america's largest gig-speed broadband network. and just doubled the capacity here. how do things look on your end? -perfect! because we're building a better network every single day. hi, i'm brian stelter live in new york, and this is "reliable sources," where we examine the story behind the story, and figure out what is reliable. this hour, gaggle swogles endless stories about dems in disarray, but how much is media hype? we'll have a