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FAREED ZAKARIA GPS
Israeli PM Visits the U.S.; The Odd Couple against ISIS; Interview with Hans Rosling; Interview with Steven Kotler and Peter Diamandis
Aired March 8, 2015 - 10:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
FAREED ZAKARIA, CNN HOST: This is GPS, the GLOBAL PUBLIC SQUARE. Welcome to all of you in the United States and around the world. I'm Fareed Zakaria.
This week Mr. Netanyahu went to Washington. Russia reeled from the murder of a top opposition leader. And the question was raised -- are American and Iran working together in Iraq? Should they?
We have a terrific panel to talk about it all.
Then a country that is collapsing and in response lashing out at Dick Cheney. It's very close to home.
Also in my continuing quest to remind you of the good news about the world out there, two special guests. Swedish professor, Hans Rosling, will dazzle you with charts that show a very different world than you've been led to believe you live in. And one of Bill Clinton's favorite experts will tell you about the amazing technological advances that are changing the world for the better.
But first here's my take. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's speech to the United States Congress was eloquent, moving, and intelligent in identifying the problems with the potential nuclear deal with Iran. But when describing the alternative to it, he entered never, never land, painting a scenario utterly divorced from reality.
Congress joined him on his fantasy ride, rapturously applauding as he spun out one unattainable demand after another.
Netanyahu declared that Washington should reject the current deal, demand that Tehran dismantle almost its entire nuclear program, and commit never to restart it. In the world according to Bibi, the Chinese, Russians, Europeans will cheer, tighten sanctions and increase pressure which would then lead Iran to capitulate.
Dreams do come true, if only we wish hard enough, says Peter Pan.
We actually have some history that can inform us on the more likely course. Between 2003 and 2005, under another practical president, Mohammad Khatami, Iran negotiated with three European Union powers a possible deal to place Iran's nuclear program under constraints and inspections. The chief nuclear negotiator at the time was Hassan Rouhani, now Iran's president. According to the Inter Press Service, Iran proposed to cap its
centrifuges at very low levels, keep enrichment levels well below those that could be used for weapons and convert its existing enriched uranium into fuel rods which could not be put to military use.
Peter Jenkins, the British representative to the International Atomic Energy Agency, told the IPS later, all of us were impressed by the proposal. But the talks collapsed because the Bush administration, acting through the British government, vetoed it. It was certain, Jenkins explained, that if the West could scare the Iranians, they would give in.
Well, what was the result? Did Iran return to the table and capitulate? No. The country withstood the sanctions and now unimpeded by any inspections massively expanded its nuclear infrastructure. Iran went from 164 centrifuges to 19,000 accumulated over 17,000 pounds of enriched uranium gas and ramped up construction of a heavy water reactor at Iraq. That's one that can be used to produce weapons grade plutonium.
Harvard University's Graham Allison, one of the country's foremost experts on nuclear matters pointed out that by insisting on maximalist demands and rejecting potential agreements, the first of which would have limited Iran to 164 centrifuges we have seen Iran advance from 10 years away from producing a bomb to only months.
Netanyahu worries that with this deal, 10 years from now Iran might restart some elements of its program. But without the deal, in 10 years Iran would likely have 50,000 centrifuges, a massive stockpile of highly enriched uranium, new facilities, thousands of experienced nuclear scientists and technicians and a fully functioning heavy water reactor that can produce plutonium.
At that point what will Bibi do? For almost 25 years now, Netanyahu has argued that Iran was on the verge of producing a nuclear weapon. So why have Bibi's predictions been proven wrong for 25 years?
A small part of it has been Western and Israeli sabotage. But even the most exaggerated claims by intelligence agencies would not account for a delay of more than a few years. The larger part is probably that Iran has always recognized that were it to build a bomb, it would face huge international consequences. In other words, the mullahs have calculated, correctly in my view, that the benefits of breakout are not worth the cost.
The key to any agreement with Iran is to keep the cost of breakout high and the benefits low. This is the most realistic path to keeping Iran from becoming a nuclear weapons state.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Second star to the right and straight on until morning.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ZAKARIA: Not Peter Pan dreams.
For more go to CNN.com/fareed and read my "Washington Post" column this week. And let's get started.
For more on Iran's nuclear ambitions and Prime Minister Netanyahu's speech to Congress and much more, I have a terrific panel joining me today.
Anne-Marie Slaughter was the director of Policy Planning at the State Department in President Obama's first term. She's now president and CEO of the think tank New America. Joseph Nye is a former assistant secretary of Defense, former dean of the Kennedy School of Government, former professor of mine, and longtime professor at Harvard University. He is the author of the new book "Is the American Century Over?"
Bret Stephens is a Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist for the "Wall Street Journal" and Peter Beinart is a professor at the City University of New York and a CNN political commentator.
Imagine if the deal falls through. What do you think is the reaction? Imagine that Bibi gets his wish, that deal is rejected by the United States. What do you think would be the reaction of the Europeans, the Chinese, the Russians?
I mean, when you were director of Policy Planning, these were your counterparts. You're dealing with them. What's their attitude?
ANNE-MARIE SLAUGHTER, FORMER DIRECTOR OF POLICY PLANNING, U.S. STATE DEPARTMENT: I think that's the worst outcome, is there's no deal. And it's because of the United States. Because at that point, this coalition that we have pretty miraculously kept together, even the Chinese and the Russians and the Europeans, to keep sanctions on Iran, that coalition will fall apart.
It will be seen that there was a deal, that the deal was imperfect but much better than no deal, that the United States at the behest of Israel blocked that deal. And at that point our competitors, other nations will lift their sanctions and we're going to be stuck with ours and with the ability of the Iranian government to continue progressing toward a nuclear weapon.
BRET STEPHENS, 2015 WINNER OF THE PULITZER PRIZE FOR COMMENTARY: There's -- look, there's no zero hour in diplomacy. There was attempt in negotiations in 2009, again in 2010, '12. And so this -- if this deal falls through at some point people will regroup and rethink. And the best thing that can happen quite frankly, now that oil is worth half as much as it was when these negotiations began, is that you can renew the kinds of serious economic pressure on the Iran that will make them rethink this.
And by the way, I think this deal suffers from this tremendous defect of the Sunset -- of the Sunset provision telling the Iranians that in 10 years they're in the free and clear when it comes to building any kind of nuclear --
ZAKARIA: It was never -- there was never going to be a permanent deal in perpetuity. There was always going to be some --
STEPHENS: No, but look, this began with discussions of 20 years, even generations, 10 years is literally --
SLAUGHTER: But this began --
STEPHENS: The goalpost have just retreated and the West keeps moving towards the Iranian position.
SLAUGHTER: Yes. The goalposts have moved precisely because we have not been willing to agree to a deal that would freeze it where it was. So they've gotten steadier -- steadily closer to getting a nuclear weapon, more centrifuges, more enriched uranium. And if we -- if we don't get a deal, there's nothing to stop them. There was never --
PETER BEINART, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: And by the time we go to next round of negotiations, they will be even closer. And whether oil prices stay low or stay strong, there was not the appetite for this kind of massive economic pressure in other countries that are not as ideologically oppose to Iran as us, that are more dependent on Iranian oil, to imagine that we can get not back -- not just back to this coalition but to a much stronger coalition and that we will be able to retard the progress Iran has made in the interim, I just don't know anyone who's seriously studies either Iranian politics or global politics vis-a-vis the other major powers in the world who thinks that's possible.
ZAKARIA: Joe, what do you think is the likelihood of these sanctions being able to stay in any event. I mean, sanctions notoriously get leaky after a while?
JOSEPH NYE, PROFESSOR, KENNEDY SCHOOL OF GOVERNMENT AT HARVARD: They'll get leaky but I think if a deal falls through and it's regarded as her fault or Israel's fault, I think they're not since the boat is going to sink, as Anne-Marie said. I think the key question for --
ZAKARIA: Because the countries will openly say we're not enforcing these.
NYE: Yes. And -- but I think the key question for Bret, and I'd be interested in his reaction, is if you really thought that low oil prices and a hope for continuation of sanctions would get you to zero centrifuges, then I might be willing to go along with that.
Do you think that's really plausible? ZAKARIA: And we're going to hold that thought because we are going to
take a break and Bret Stephens is going to answer Joe Nye's question when we get back.
ZAKARIA: And we are back with Anne-Marie Slaughter, Joseph Nye, Bret Stephens and Peter Beinart.
In the interest of that handful of people who have not sat through the commercial, Joe, what was the question you were posing?
NYE: Well, the question I was posing for Bret was -- and it's a serious question, not a setup of any sort, is, do you think you can under the pressure of low oil prices and sanctions which may be leaky but we're hoping some will hold, do you think you can get to a situation where the Iranians would really go towards centrifuges?
ZAKARIA: And -- OK, and let me just throw in a few facts. The Iranian program is not 36 years old. It was started by the Shah of Iran under American prodding. It is a nationalistic program. There are good polls that showed the nuclear program in Iran is popular. They've withstood 36 years of sanctions, they withstood the Iran-Iraq war.
You still think a few more sanctions will get them to zero?
STEPHENS: No, not just sanctions. There are all -- all kinds of other pressures. But one of the reasons why the Iranian program only stopped, at least the nuclearization side of their program, only stopped in 2003 was the coincidence of the high point of American power and the serious threat that the regime faced. Basically they found themselves put to the choice, have a nuclear program or keep -- or keep the regime. So when the choices were that stark, they in fact moved.
SLAUGHTER: So we're not going to topple the regime. So they're not going to -- they don't face that pressure. And we're essentially either going to have no deal or a deal that stops things and is it a better position?
ZAKARIA: And I have to say, threaten to topple the regime is probably the surest path to ensuring that they want nuclear weapons because that's the one insurance policy they could buy.
STEPHENS: But you have -- you have to exact the price on -- this is a regime that is winning everywhere it looks, throughout the Middle East --
ZAKARIA: Let me ask you about -- let me ask you about this. Because in your and Prime Minister Netanyahu's conception of Iran, there is this great paradox. They are winning everywhere, gobbling up other countries but actually on the verge of collapse because of low oil pressure. Low oil prices and sanctions. How can both be true? STEPHENS: That's both -- look. They are economically vulnerable.
Countries that are on the march can also have genuine vulnerabilities and right now their great vulnerability is the --
ZAKARIA: Are they very strong or are they very weak?
STEPHENS: They are economically vulnerable but at the same time they are playing their hands, their cards terrifically in taking advantage of an absence of American will to defend U.S. interest in Syria, in Yemen, and in Iraq.
ZAKARIA: And let's talk about that. What do you think of these reports? The "New York Times" has a terrific one about the fact that the U.S. is tacitly relying on Iran to battle ISIS in Iraq.
BEINART: It's not surprising at all. I mean, Iran and the U.S. have overlapping interests there. You know, part of what Benjamin Netanyahu was trying to say is that ISIS is the moral equivalent of the regime in Iran. That's not true. The Iranian regime is a very nasty, brutal, malevolent regime but it is not ISIS. It is a country that has the capacity to actually be a stable democracy.
If it were ISIS there would not be 20,000 Jews living in Iran today with 11 functioning synagogues. There is -- we have much more in common both strategically with this government in Iran than ISIS. And I think this is one of Netanyahu's big problems, is that most Americans don't believe that Iran and ISIS are similar threats to the U.S. They concede that ISIS is of a different caliber.
ZAKARIA: What about that point? That if you look at Afghanistan, Iran and the U.S. have basically the same interest, both don't like the Taliban. If you look at Iraq, Iran and the United States have very similar interests. Is this -- is it possible to imagine a U.S.- Iran rapprochement that goes beyond just the nuclear issue?
NYE: Not a permanent one but I have a view that the Middle East is going through the equivalent of Europe's 30-year war. That you're seeing religious divisions, state divisions, non-state groups all battling. And essentially in that kind of a situation there's going to be a lot of fluidity in terms of what alliances -- contemporary coalitions are going to happen.
We're not going to be able to run that any more than you could run French Revolution to switch metaphors in the period after 1789. And it takes two or three decades for these things to work themselves through. So will we be involved with one group and then another group and the enemy of my enemy, and so forth, I think yes.
ZAKARIA: What do you make of the death of -- murder of Boris Nemtsov? Is there anything to say about it?
BEINART: I think we -- you know, we are seeing what a brutal regime this is. A regime that I think is stripped more and more of any shred of legitimacy that it faces, that it could have. And I think that, you know, a lot of these comes down to whether you're basically an optimist or a pessimist. I think that the critics generally pessimistic, they tend to see that
the authoritarianism is on the march. I think one -- the crucial divide between them and Obama is that I think Obama is basically an optimist. I think he basically believes that economic forces, the forces of globalization will ultimately make a regime like Putin not be able to sustain itself forever and certainly not be on the march.
STEPHENS: I think Peter's analysis is absolutely right. And I'm a pessimist.
STEPHENS: And quite frankly part of the problem that we have with Putin is that just as now we're talking about Nemtsov, six years ago or a few years ago we're talking about Anna Politkovskaya, so many opponents of the regime who met mysterious ends, and that was -- time and again we regretted the murders, we wondered about the motives of the murders, and then it was swept under the carpet for the sake of a pragmatic relationship with Russia.
And so these killings continue. I'm not -- I don't know who killed Boris Nemtsov but it's just the case that a lot of his political opponents come to untimely ends. And I think what's happening now with Britain, with an inquiry into the murder of Alexander Litvinenko is an important starting point. There needs to be historical accountability for what's happening in this -- in modern Russia.
I think Russians might be paying attention. And as they start paying attention they'll realize that their enemy is not in the West, their enemy is in the Kremlin.
SLAUGHTER: Well, there's actually some good news in the story, not obviously about Nemtsov, but it's terrible. We don't know who did it. But I think it's certainly somebody friendly to Putin. But what -- that story obscured was that demonstration that Nemtsov was planning to attend, that became a memorial for him.
What that shows you is that even at a time when Putin is supposed to be at an all-time high, when he's supposed to have support because of the war in Ukraine and Crimea, he's actually once again facing significant demonstrations at home. And that's what he's terribly scared of.
ZAKARIA: Can you think -- can I just ask a question? Do you think that we are now in a situation with Russia where -- Russia is not the Soviet Union, so it's not really a Cold War, but the relationship between Russia and the United States, particularly in the West, is just going to be adversarial?
NYE: I think we're in for a bad spell and it's not just Putin. I argue in my book that Russia is a country in serious decline. It's a one-crop economy, terrible demographic problem, they're going to be fewer and fewer Russians. It has a health problem. The average Russian male dies at age 64, which is a decade earlier than other normal developed countries. And with such rampant corruption that any attempt to reform it is blocked.
This is a picture of a society in deep decline. The danger is that declining societies are often more dangerous than rising ones. If you ask me which is more dangerous, Russia or China, I worry more about Russia. Remember, 100 years ago in the great war, as it was called, it was Austria, Hungary, the only major power that really wanted war, and that's because Austria and Hungary was in decline.
ZAKARIA: On that sober note, Joe Nye, Peter Beinart, Bret Stephens, Anne-Marie Slaughter, thank you very much.
Up next, there is an autocrat perhaps even more combative than Putin and he's right in the United States' own backyard. We will tell you who and why when we come back.
ZAKARIA: Now for our "What in the World" segment.
An autocratic strong man has gotten nasty with Washington in recent weeks. He announced that U.S. embassy staff in his country must be cut back by over 80 percent. He's banned some current and former U.S. officials, George Bush, Dick Cheney among them, from entering his nation. And he's even said that he's had some Americans arrested on suspicion of plotting a coup.
No, we're not talking about Vladimir Putin, it's someone much closer to home. Nicolas Maduro. The president of Venezuela.
This week the president went further revealing an audio recording that Maduro says links an American citizen to a plot to overthrow him. Maduro wants this American extradited. The U.S. has mocked such allegations as baseless.
Why is Maduro doing this? It's simple. Venezuela is collapsing and he needs someone to blame or to divert attention towards. Venezuela's economy is in shambles. Its inflation rate is now close to 70 percent. That's higher than any other country in the world by far according to Barclays. And the bank says the country's debt is even riskier than Greek debt. The IMF predicts that the economy will plunge by 7 percent this year. Supermarket shelves are empty. Hospitals lack basic supplies.
The terrible economic policies of Maduro and his mentor, the late President Hugo Chavez, have taken their toll.
Barclay's points to measures such as nationalizing private industries and an inefficient exchange rate policy as being the culprits. The economy was already in bad shape last year and then oil prices plummeted, making things much worse for this oil-centered economy.
We are witnessing the end of Chavismo, the populous socialist agenda of the late President Hugo Chavez.
Moises Naim of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace notes that Chavez deftly wove together a narrative democracy with elements of authoritarianism, creating a post modern autocracy that looked democratic but was anything but.
Naim says elections are rigged, the government controls the judiciary and runs the national assembly without checks or balances.
When Chavez was in power, his charisma and political acumen along with high oil prices helped fill government coffers and made him popular. But Maduro doesn't come close to his predecessor. His approval rating has fallen to 22 percent according to data analysis.
So how will this play out? Parliamentary elections are supposed to take place this year. But Moises Naim believes that they won't happen unless the ruling party knows it will win. He predicts potential riots over food shortages and says Maduro could be forced out of power by rival Chavez supporters.
Mark Falcoff of the American Enterprise Institute has a more dire prediction -- civil war. The government is polarizing, he says, and it is not embarrassed to use violence.
We reached out to the Maduro government for comment but we did not get a response.
Venezuela may be the worst example of a phenomenon that we are likely to see more of, trouble in oil-rich countries. If oil prices stay low, many regimes that have built the legitimacy on generous subsidies and a well-paid apparatus of control might find themselves facing severe challenges. Alas, in the short-term, this might not produce regime change and democracy so much as crackdowns, repression and chaos, which is what we're seeing in Venezuela today.
Next on "GPS," prepare to have your vision of the world turned upside down. If you think the world looks grim and scary these days, my guests will give you what they say are the real facts about how well the world is doing, really.
ZAKARIA: We normally save the quiz portion of the show until the end, but I wanted to give you a pop quiz right now. The question is this. There are about 2 billion children in the world today. In 85 years, in the year 2100, will there be 4 billion children, 3 billion children, or 2 billion children? The same number of children that are there today.
My next guest Hans Rosling is a professor at the Karolinska Institute in Sweden. He's known around the world for his dazzling presentations about the realities of the world. From health, which is his specialty, to demographics to education to money. I caught his talk at Davos where he asked that same question about how many children there would be in 2100. Only 26 percent of the world's CEOs and political leaders got the right answer. The same question was asked to a random group of chimpanzees, and 33 percent of the apes got it right. Yes, chimps might be smarter than Davos attendees. So, what is the right answer? Professor Rosling will tell you in a minute. Welcome back to the show.
HANS ROSLING, CO-FOUNDER, THE GAPMINDER FOUNDATION: Thank you very much.
ZAKARIA: So, you have started a project called the Ignorance Project. Why?
ROSLING: We were teaching about the world, and I became sort of famous, and then they said, let's check if people got it. So, we started to used Web base survey companies, which we partnered with, to see what will people now. ZAKARIA: And it turns out that they are not aware of some of the most amazing strides that have taken place, some of the amazing good news. What do we know about poverty, for example?
ROSLING: We have the question that we asked here. In the last 20 years, did the percentage of people living in extreme poverty, did that almost double, remain the same, or did it half? So, it's really different alternatives. And I show you here the results from Sweden and U.S. And the fact is the right answer is half. But only 23 percent in Sweden and five percent in U.S. got it right.
ZAKARIA: And when we look at vaccines, another place where it's controversial in this country these days, but huge evidence that it's had enormous positive effects around the world, what do we know?
ROSLING: This is the question we put. How many of the world's one- year-old kids have got measles vaccines? Measles is that well established vaccine that is so important. Is it two out of ten, five out of ten or eight out of ten? And this is how they answered in Sweden and U.S. And the fact is that eight out of ten children in the whole world get this vaccine and this is not known.
ZAKARIA: What is the biggest change in Europe? You study all this stuff. If you were to say to somebody the most important change that I notice that is taking place in the world today is what?
ROSLING: I think it what follows child survival, what follows education for girls, what follows people getting out of poverty. It is the size of families. Europe decreased the size of families from 1800, you know. It was six, it was five, and it came down today below replacement level. Even with immigration, the population is decreasing in Europe. In America, it came down slightly later, and there was a baby boom after the Second World War, but it's down to two now. In Asia, which was such a worry, people label it population bomb, but also a nasty expression. And this is what you could see from Asia. It was, indeed, high, all the way into the 1970s and (INAUDIBLE). It's two today. In half of India, it's two children or less. And Africa, is something happening? Yes, indeed, it is, 4.5 today. And we know that more or less this will happen into the future. We don't know really how fast Africa will come down. We don't know at this level. But this is a big change from lots of children, of which many died, to few children, of which almost all survived.
ZAKARIA: So, now we have the map of the world with the populations of the world. We've talked in the past about the world being characterized not by the decline of America, but the rise of everyone else. Show us that picture. ROSLING: What is happening in the world, is that the population stops
increasing in Europe. Today we have 1 billion in Europe. It has also almost stopped in the Americas from south and north, 1 billion, in Africa today 1 billion, and in Asia 4 billions. So, what will happen? Up to mid-century, the United Nations population division tells us no more in Europe, almost the same in America, but there will be 1 billion more in Asia. And with that, the fast population growth in Asia will - it can increase a little, it can even start to decrease. And by midcentury also, 1 billion more in Africa. So, Africa will double.
ZAKARIA: Now, what happens at the end of the century?
ROSLING: No more in America, no more in Europe, no more in Asia, but most, probably, two more in Africa.
ZAKARIA: Africa's population doubles in size.
ROSLING: Doubles twice. Maybe if Africa is very successful, three and a half. But there will be more - twice as many people in Africa as in the Americas and Europe together. And look, if I take North America and West European, 1 billion. And this is East Europe, this is Latin America. You have less than 10 percent of the world population here in the Old West. You have 80 percent of the world population in Asia and Africa.
ZAKARIA: All right, so, now let's tell people the answer to the question.
ROSLING: Well, this is the question you put, less than 1 billion when I was born, 2 billion at the turn of the century. Which one of these is right?
ZAKARIA: So, how many children will there be, 2 billion, 3 billion, or 4 billion? There are currently 2 billion. And the answer is ...
ROSLING: The answer is 2 billion.
ZAKARIA: 2 billion.
ROSLING: It may increase a little. It may even decrease. But the number of children increase in Africa, but decrease in Asia and Europe. And when you asked the Swedes, they answered like this. And in U.S. they answered like this. Can you see our ...
ZAKARIA: The 11 percent Swedes got it right, only 7 percent U.S. got it right.
ROSLING: I went to the zoo and I asked the chimps, you know, as you said. And they get 33 percent.
ZAKARIA: 33 percent, because it's random.
ROSLING: It's random. But these people answer according to preconceived ideas, how things were back then.
ZAKARIA: So, this is an important point. To get an answer that is worse than random means you're not ignorant. You have prejudices.
ROSLING: Prejudices, when yes, you're not upgraded. You learn something in school or in university like 20, 30 years ago, the problem is that the kids still learn that in school. Because they learn how the world was when their teachers graduate. We really have to start getting the macro-numbers right. The world has changed now. And Africa is also changing. And when this has evened out, we'll be around 10, 11 billion. That's what we have to feed in the world and we can do it.
ZAKARIA: And that's why you have the Ignorance Project, to tell - to make people aware of the realities of the world.
ROSLING: Because, Fareed, you can't discuss the future if you don't even know the present.
ZAKARIA: Hans Rosling, pleasure to have you on. Thank you.
Next on "GPS," yet another reason to be more optimistic about the world we live in. Technology now puts you in charge of your destiny and makes your voice heard in ways unimaginable just 20 years ago. We're going to tell you how you can succeed and profit through all these changes. My guests will explain. (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
ZAKARIA: If you're still depressed about the world we live in, hopefully my next two guests will change that. Peter Diamandis is an American entrepreneur, perhaps best known as the founder and chairman of the XPRIZE, which offers big cash payouts for breakthrough scientific developments that will help humanity. And Steven Kotler is an author and journalist, they've just published the second book together called "Bold, How to Go Big, Create Wealth and Impact the World." Are you ready to be more optimistic? Then listen in.
Peter Diamandis, Steven Kotler, pleasure to have you on. So, let's first talk about the bigger issue, which is one of the things you guys have been campaigning to make us all understand, is that we are not living in scary, dark times, but in times of incredible opportunity and abundance. What is the most powerful evidence for that?
PETER DIAMANDIS, AUTHOR, "BOLD": The evidence is 1,000 years ago if you wanted to affect a country or a region, you had to be the king or the queen to do anything. 100 years ago, you would be the industrialist, rubber baron. Today any of us have access to the technology that only governments had 20 or 30 years ago, access to crowd funding. So, someone who is driven, who's passionate can actually make a difference, go and start a company that can positively impact the lives of millions, eventually billions of people.
ZAKARIA: And in a sense, that's really to me the most remarkable, hopeful sign that there are so many people whose potential is still untapped, who have this talent that is not used in any way, people in India, people in China, people in Africa.
DIAMANDIS: So that's absolutely right. And we're living in a time where the number of people connected online back in 2010 was about 1.8 billion. And over the next five years we're going up to 5 to potentially 7 billion people connected around the world. So there's 3 billion new minds entering the global economy. And these are 3 billion minds not coming online, like we did back in the mid-'90s, they are coming online with access to the world's information on google, Amazon Web services, you know, with Cloud computing, with Cloud printing. And that's an exciting time to be alive. Because the number of people solving problems, - depend on the government or the large corporations, if I care about something I have the tools now to go and solve it, create a business and really drive a world of abundance.
ZAKARIA: So when people think about this issue of innovation and the future, there is a school of thought that says, you know what, this all sounds good. And these people like the two of you talk about this as a gee-whiz quality to it. But if you would actually look at the productivity, at the way, in which things have actually improved, give me the 1880s or 1890s any day when you have electricity, and indoor plumbing, and hygiene, and those are much more important than, you know, Twitter or an app.
STEVEN KOTLER, AUTHOR, "BOLD": They may be much more important than Twitter and app at that kind of foundational level of kind of taking care of your basic needs, right? But in terms of take it one step farther, the Twitter and the app kind of democratizes the power for anybody to make a living, right? It's a platform. Anybody can come in, plug in and develop on that place. So, it opens up an entire world of entrepreneurial possibilities that just wasn't available way back in the 1880s. In the 1880s, everybody had to be a generalist, right?
ZAKARIA: So, one of the things you talk about in this book is how to take advantage of this world of abundance. And one of the things, the technologies that will do it. And you talk about things that democratize, things that dematerialize, that take away the money. So, you think about Craigslist or the Wikipedia, right?
DIAMANDIS: Or Uber, or Airbnb. And so "Bold" was a book - is a book written for entrepreneurs, and it's a how-to manual. And we built a book in three parts, and the first part it's about, these are exponential, robotics, synthetic biology, networks, sensors, 3D printing that any entrepreneur can begin to use. You don't have to be a technologist. We show you the book how to tap into this, because larger technologists out there are looking for someone to work with. The second part of the book is about mindset. It's about how to the most extraordinary entrepreneurs, Larry Page, Elon Musk, Richard Branson, Jeff Bezos. How do they think of scale? And what are the ways you can think of scale. Then the final part of the book is the realization that we have tools like crowd funding. Right? $15 billion in 2015 in crowd funding will go to $100 billion. So this book is about how do you build a company? How do you become an entrepreneur that impacts a billion people?
ZAKARIA: But so, the key to many of these people is thinking at scale, that ability to think of solving a huge problem and of building a huge company. Is that different from just being an entrepreneur who wants to start, you know, a dry cleaning business and knows how to run the books well so they will always make a profit?
DIAMANDIS: Well, I think one of the things that's interesting that I've noticed interviewing all the entrepreneurs that we talked to for this, very, very successful entrepreneurs, there doesn't seem to be that much of a difference in terms of input, how much, how hard you are going to work. What's interesting is, it's division, that is actually the difference, how big is your idea. Because everything else is going to be basically the same.
KOTLER: Fareed, if I could add there, when the realization is involved, is that the world's biggest problems are the world's biggest business opportunities. And the flip side of that, if you want to become a billionaire, help a billion people. And that level of scale used to only be possible with Jeff Immelt or GE or, you know, Muhtar Kent at Coca-Cola. Today, an entrepreneur using this hyper connected world can actually create a product or service they upload to the cloud and make available to a billion people. This is fundamentally different than even ten years ago. And so, it allows each of us to think at a global scale. And our mission is, you know, stop building photo sharing apps and start taking on the world's biggest problems where you can help build this world of abundance, create tremendous wealth for you and really provide a positive impact for the world.
ZAKARIA: Peter, Steven, pleasure to have you on.
Next on GPS, the military draft. It's coming back. Not in the United States, but in a country that may just be a canary in the coal mine. That might be a mixed metaphor but I'll explain when we come back.
ZAKARIA: This week's speech to Congress was the third of its kind for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu who first addressed the room in 1996 and again in 2011, according to the House of Representatives. With this latest speech, the Israeli prime minister joined an elite club becoming the second person in history to address a joint meeting of Congress three times. It brings me to my question, who was the only other person to address a joint meeting of Congress three times? Nelson Mandela, Winston Churchill, Yitzhak Rabin or Queen Elizabeth II? Stay tuned, we'll tell you the correct answer.
This week's book of the week is "Bold" whose authors Peter Diamandis and Steven Kotler were just on the show. This is a book that describes the future of technology, but then also shows you how to profit from it. Both elements, the science and the business, are very well done. It's written lucidly. Now, maybe this book will help you make money. But I'm sure it will help you understand the emerging world.
Now for the last look. In 1973, the United States did away with its military draft. But according to the CIA World Fact book, approximately 70 countries still have compulsory military service or an active conscription program. That group will likely soon include the small country of Lithuania, whose plan to reintroduce the draft will soon be put before its parliament according to Reuters. The compulsory military service will increase the size of Lithuania's small military by more than 20 percent annually according to the Lithuanian Ministry of Defense. And this move comes weeks after the Lithuanian government published an instruction manual for the public called "Things to Know about Readiness for Emergency Situations and Warfare" as the FT pointed out.
This looks like a nation racing for war, and it's understandable. Russia's actions in the Ukraine and Crimea have caused great concern throughout the entire Baltic region. According to Lithuania's president, the country can never be too careful. This week she told the Lithuanian press that the country must be able to defend itself for at least the time that it would take for NATO to mobilize. It is a sobering reminder that in the most developed continent in the world, Europe, nationalism, conflict and even preparations for war are back in play.
The correct answer to the "GPS" challenge question is B, so Winston Churchill was the first foreign dignitary to address a joint meeting of Congress three times. He gave a speech as following, Pearl Harbor in 1941, in the midst of World War II in 1943 and toward the beginning of the Cold War in 1952. Nelson Mandela and Yitzhak Rabin are the only other foreign leaders to do this twice. If the House Republicans choose to, Mr. Netanyahu could have the opportunity to break all records and make a fourth address as a sitting prime minister, but first he has to win the Israeli elections later this month.
Thanks to all of you for being part of my program this week. I will see you next week.