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FAREED ZAKARIA GPS
The Very Long Arm of American Justice; Interview with Stanley McChrystal; ISIS' Utter Depravity on Display; Interview with Zeinab Bangura; Interview with Dan Barber; Turkey's President's Staying at Power Threatens Turkey Democracy. Aired 10-11a ET
Aired June 7, 2015 - 10:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[10:00:05] 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.
We'll start today's show with football, by which I mean soccer, by which I mean corruption. Whatever you call it, FIFA Swiss headquarters is in chaos thanks to a U.S. indictment. How in the world did the long arm of America's law reach 4,000 miles away? Is it right? We'll ask two top experts.
Then I'll talk about how to defeat ISIS with the man who helped defeat its predecessor, al Qaeda in Iraq. A conversation with Stanley McChrystal.
Also a stunning expose on ISIS. It has set up a system of sexual slavery, buying, selling, and trading women like cattle. This is a report you will not want to miss.
Finally, Chef Dan Barber was recognized again this week as one of the world's best restaurateurs. I'll talk to him about the future of what we eat.
But first, here's my take. It turns out that Republicans in Washington are united on one issue, their hatred of Rand Paul. John McCain says that he is the worst possible candidate on the most important issue. Marco Rubio opines that he has no idea of what he's talking about. Lindsey Graham concludes that it would be devastating for the party to nominate him.
Conservative commentators are even more vicious. I cannot recall an instance in recent decades when so much vitriol has been directed against a leading political figure by his own party. The attacks are almost entirely focused on Paul's foreign policy, which is routinely characterized as dangerous and isolationist. In fact, the real problem appears to be that Rand Paul is trying to force Republicans and some Democrats to defend what has become a lazy, smug consensus in favor of an ever-expanding national security state.
I've read Paul's proposals and speeches on foreign policy. There are some odd comments and rhetorical broadsides, but for the most part his views are intellectually serious and well within the tradition of what he correctly calls conservative realism. They are also politically courageous. Paul has taken positions and cited authorities that are deeply unpopular with his own party. Yes, of course he craves publicity and engages in stunts. What politician does not? But what makes his opponents most uncomfortable is the substance, not the style.
Take the most recent example, his opposition to the blanket extension of the Patriot Act, which has resulted in some modest restraint on the vast expansion of government powers since 9/11. In defending his position, Paul points out rightly that we would not even know of the existence of this vast system of metadata collection if not for Edward Snowden's revelations, that the FBI has been unable to cite a single terrorist plot disrupted by it, and that the special courts in place have few checks and little transparency.
He cites glowingly, dissenting opinions by Thurgood Marshall and William Brennan, the Supreme Court's two most prominent liberals in the last half century. Or considers his views on lifting the embargo in Cuba, on which he writes, "The supporters on the embargo fall strangely silent when asked how trade with Cuba is so different than trade with Russia or China or Vietnam."
This is not a path to primary voters' hearts in Florida. He has raised uncomfortable questions about Anwar al-Awlaki, an al Qaeda leader who was killed by an American drone strike when in a car on a road in Yemen. Paul has pointed out that since al-Awlaki was an American citizen, this action creates an extraordinary legal precedent, that the president of the United States can execute an American citizen without trial.
In the Middle East, Paul has called for caution. America's military interventions, he's argued, have destabilized countries and led to perverse consequences. As secular dictators fell in Libya, Egypt, Iraq, and now Syria, he writes, "radical jihadists exploited the vacuum, isn't that right."
[10:05:18] I don't agree with Paul on many things, including some of his foreign policy. I think many of his positions on civil rights are historically blind, cruel, and dangerous. But in the area of national security, he has time and again raised important, inconvenient questions only to have them ruled out of order and to be told that he is a crank, far outside the mainstream.
In fact, it would be useful and important for Republicans and for Democrats to stop the name calling and actually discuss and debate his ideas.
For more, go to CNN.com/fareed and read my "Washington Post" column this week. Let's get started.
Last Friday Sepp Blatter, the president of FIFA, the most powerful organization in the world's most popular sport, said this to reporters at a press conference. Why would I step down? That would mean I recognize that I did wrong. Then four days later on Tuesday, Blatter stood before cameras again to announce that he was stepping down. Apparently he recognized something.
Corruption in FIFA has long been whispered about but few thought this all-powerful agency and its all-powerful president could be shaken. But both were, thanks mostly to the United States, not the Swiss, where FIFA is headquartered, or any of their football fanatic European neighbors.
How did that happen? Here to discuss are Noah Feldman, professor at Harvard Law School, and Jessica Tillipman, an assistant dean at GW Law School.
So, Jessica, you wrote and explained in the "Washington Post." So very simply, why does the United States have the ability to prosecute somebody 4,000 miles away?
JESSICA TILLIPMAN, GEORGE WASHINGTON LAW SCHOOL: If you read the indictment, it's pretty clear that there's a strong jurisdictional tie to the U.S. The key here is the use of the RICO statute, which has essentially enabled the U.S. government to go after many different individuals -- for many different crimes over a long period of time in one indictment.
And if you look at the connection in the actual indictment, it points to regular use of the U.S. banking system to funnel illicit funds inside and outside of the United States. It points to planning and conspiring inside the United States to further these illicit activities. And of course CONCACAF is located in Miami, Florida.
ZAKARIA: But the use of RICO here is key. So explain what RICO is and how it effectively alleges that the entire FIFA is essentially a criminal enterprise.
NOAH FELDMAN, PROFESSOR, HARVARD LAW SCHOOL: This is a statute that was invented originally to prosecute organized crime. And specifically the idea was to find an organization that does good, like a labor union, for example, that's been turned into a criminal enterprise by virtue of the criminal acts of its leaders. And that's the law that the prosecutors have used here. And essentially what they've said is that by corruption, the leaders of FIFA, the soccer body, transformed FIFA into a criminal conspiracy. That is a kind of mafia.
ZAKARIA: It does seem to me to still raise this issue of the reach of American power and is this how particularly prosecutorial power should be used.
FELDMAN: Just because we have a law that enables us to go after people all over the world doesn't mean that the U.S. should use those laws. We actually have lots of laws that facilitate this kind of enforcement. And there's lots of corruption around the world that we don't go after. So there's an important political dimension here, an international dimension where you have to think about how the world will interpret this use.
Will they see us as a good sheriff coming around and cleaning things up, or will people say, there go the imperialists again trying to impose their order on the rest of the world? And that's a gamble every time you use it.
ZAKARIA: Of course, this is what Vladimir Putin is saying.
TILLIPMAN: It is, but I have to say in this particular instance, if not the U.S., who else? I mean, only the U.S. has the resources and the experience of cases of this nature. And of course the laws of this nature that allow them to tie everybody together in a particular case.
FELDMAN: But may I say that there's a keyword there. Laws. Most countries don't have the aggressive conspiracy laws that the U.S. has. That's a legacy of our legal system. It was used to go after organized crime, but most countries don't think that you can hold some people responsible for the actions of other people in an organization just because of an overall criminal conspiracy. International law doesn't recognize that kind of conspiracy.
And so it's true that U.S. laws make it easier, but that doesn't answer the question of whether we should go forward and use them because after all there's a reason that other countries are suspicious of such broad-reaching laws.
[10:10:02] ZAKARIA: So what I hear often from international businesses, people who are engaged, is that they now worry a great deal about the extraordinary reach of American prosecutors or regulators, that people will use the fact that some bank has to do business in New York, you know, has to have access to the Federal Reserve, and use that in a way to extort fines, payments, levies, and that this is really an improper use of the American system because you're basically some regulator is using the power of the American state, the police power of the American state, to right some wrong that he or she may feel is there, but it is not appropriate.
TILLIPMAN: Well, I think that's been an argument that's been made several times. Particularly with the foreign corrupt practices act and it's used against companies for bribing foreign government officials, but it really has been an impetus for change. The U.S. is leading the global fight against corruption. Of course, it hasn't rid the world of corruption, but it certainly has changed the way that corporations do business, particularly abroad.
ZAKARIA: You think it's fair to say, though, that this will cause a certain amount of resentment of America's unilateral power?
TILLIPMAN: Well, I think in numerous instances it has. But unlike many of the cases involving corporations, this one seems to be a pretty welcomed visit by U.S. government enforcement authorities from the rest of the world, well, with the exception of Putin, of course.
ZAKARIA: Yes. This one -- this one we do seem to be the white knights finally.
ZAKARIA: Thank you, both. Fascinating conversation.
TILLIPMAN: Thank you. ZAKARIA: Next on GPS, General Stanley McChrystal and his team
successfully crippled Al Qaeda in Iraq, once hugely powerful and a terrible thorn in America's side.
What would he do about AQI's successor, ISIS? I'll ask him when we come back.
[10:16:08] ZAKARIA: In 2003, Al Qaeda in Iraq was wreaking havoc in that country, slaughtering soldiers and civilians, creating huge problems for the coalition that was trying to rebuild the nation in the post-Saddam era. At the time, General Stanley McChrystal headed the Joint Special Operations Command, that's the country's most elite of special forces, SEALs, Rangers, Delta Force, and the like. Under McChrystal's leadership, Al Qaeda in Iraq was crippled by a relentless series of targeted assassinations. First its leader, Abu Mussab al- Zarqawi, was killed, then his henchmen and other terrorists.
So who better to talk to about how to end the terror reign of ISIS, a group which arose from the ashes of Al Qaeda in Iraq? McChrystal has a new book out about war and leadership called "Team of Teams: New Rules of Engagement for a Complex World."
Stan McChrystal, pleasure to have you on.
GEN. STANLEY MCCHRYSTAL (RET.), FORMER COMMANDER, U.S. JOINT SPECIAL OPERATIONS COMMAND: Thanks for having me.
ZAKARIA: Why is ISIS advancing on the battlefield?
MCCHRYSTAL: Well, I think we mistake ISIS for what it really is. We think of ISIS as a traditional terrorist movement or a traditional religious movement, and we've seen those for many, many years. And what I really think that we're seeing is an organization that is taking advantage of the political and social erosion in the Middle East, but more importantly, it's taking advantage of the technological environment, which has really just appeared in the last decade or so.
And so what ISIS has done is it's got this deft battlefield agility. It's got this asymmetric barbarity, but it also leverages technology, digital communications, so that the things that they do and the things that they say reverberate very far. I first saw this back fighting AQI.
ZAKARIA: Al Qaeda in Iraq.
ZAKARIA: The precursor.
MCCHRYSTAL: Exactly. They were kind of a preview of ISIS. They're different, but many of the same things. And we found that they could blow up a car bomb in Baghdad, and it would reverberate in Mosul and it would recruit young men in North Africa. ISIS is even a step further. It's in their DNA to embrace this new environment in which technology allows them to seem like they're everywhere, to seem like they know everything, and this combination produces this extraordinarily dangerous hybrid.
ZAKARIA: What do you think is the solution? Why not just whack them hard every time you see them? You know, when I call it the McChrystal approach, that's what you did in Iraq. You went around and you killed terrorists, you killed leaders of the insurgency. And yes, it's a whack-a-mole operation, but I've always thought whack-a-mole is no fun for the mole. Especially if Stan McChrystal was going around bopping them on the head.
MCCHRYSTAL: Yes, and I think it's important to understand what we did in Iraq was a very focused counterterrorism campaign that was part of a larger effort. For the first two or three years, we were pummeling al Qaeda but not achieving much real strategic effect. It wasn't until the United States changed its strategy and took a broader counterinsurgency that what we did nested inside that had real effect.
So I think we could -- we could in fact employ a very focused campaign forever, and it would never really produce the kinds of effects I'm talking about. I think you need that component of any campaign, but if you don't have the broader framework, the broader effort, then I think it's seductive. It makes you feel like you're making progress every time you kill a terrorist leader or you capture somebody, but in reality, it's a little bit elusive. It's actually deceptive.
ZAKARIA: But then you're left with the question of, can you fix the politics in a way that will make it work? Let me give you an example. When you were in Afghanistan, you said, we're going to fight the bad guys, we're going to defeat them in any given area, and then we're going to bring government in a box, a phrase you might have regretted using in the sense that it implied that this is going to be very easy.
[10:20:16] What ended up happening in so many of these places is you won every battle. You did defeat the Taliban. But then it turned out that there was no government in a box, so the government in a box was corrupt and dysfunctional and crooked. And over time what's happened is the Taliban, taking advantage of that dysfunction, has resurfaced.
How do you solve that problem?
MCCHRYSTAL: Yes, that's a fair point. And what we tried to do was bring governance and economic progress along was really difficult. And if I'm guilty of any failure there, it's a failure to either appreciate or articulate just how hard that would be. But I think it's essential. If you are going to prevent long-term instability, you have got to fix those issues. I think we don't like the idea of nation building, and it doesn't have to all be the United States or all be the west, but if we can't build a team of teams by nations in the region, all who are stakeholders in the need to get Syria, Iraq, and other nations back into some kind of effective equilibrium, then it's going to be very difficult to produce any kind of lasting solution.
ZAKARIA: You talk in the book about the importance of sharing and letting people -- this is a lot of what you did in Afghanistan and Iraq, is distribute information as widely as possible. Isn't there a flip side to it, though? When you look at the WikiLeaks phenomenon, you see the fact Bradley Manning, you know, a soldier in the U.S. Army, had access to the diplomatic cables between the secretary of state and the French foreign minister.
And in today's world, I suppose the problem is it's very difficult to compartmentalize. Once you give bad people access, they have access. Can there be some -- such a thing as too much information?
MCCHRYSTAL: Well, there's always a possibility of too much. But what I would tell you is you're going to have the Bradley Manning episodes periodically. But if we go back into silos and compartmentalization, I think the cure is worse than the disease in that case. What we found in Iraq and what we're finding against ISIS now is that a traditional hierarchy where you start with information and it goes up and it informs the senior leaders who make decisions, and then it goes down, by the time those decisions are down, they are wrong.
Because the situation has changed so fast and the complexity is such that it's impossible for a centralized organization to do that kind of control, although, with modern technology, it's tempting to try. What we found was because of the complexity of the battlefield, we had to up end that and we had to create a team of teams in which shared consciousness, pushed information across the organization so that everybody had as much contextual understanding as possible.
And then we empowered them to execute. It's a little unnerving because you're letting go of some control, but the only way we could have produced the pace of operations that we did against al Qaeda by 2005 and '06 was this radically different model.
ZAKARIA: Fascinating. Stan McChrystal, pleasure to have you on.
MCCHRYSTAL: Thanks so much, Fareed.
ZAKARIA: Next on GPS, we will dig deeper into ISIS, especially the terror group's barbarity. Just how despicable are these guys? Trust me, you will be shocked.
[10:27:33] ZAKARIA: Most of the savagery of ISIS is well known to the world. We've seen the way they dispense of journalists, dispose of their enemies, and display children. But my next guest is recently back from a mission to camps where refugees from Iraq and Syria are living. She went there to investigate ISIS' sex crimes. And what she has to say will shock you. Indeed, delicate and horrific matters are about to be discussed, matters that are probably not appropriate for children.
Zainab Bangura is the U.N.'s Special Representative on Sexual Violence in Conflict. I began by asking her about a group that has been particularly persecuted by ISIS, the Yazidi, a religious minority in Iraq. Bangura told me what ISIS does when it takes a Yazidi village.
(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE) ZAINAB BANGURA, U.N. SPECIAL REPRESENTATIVE ON SEXUAL VIOLENCE IN CONFLICT: They take all the women, the babies and the mothers, one side because those ones they don't need for sexual exploitation or sexual abuse. Then the younger ones are the ones they take. And those ones, they have somebody who examines them to find out who is a virgin, who is not a virgin. They do also an examination. They ask them to take a bath. And then they decide. Because the younger you are, the prettier you are, then they have to decide who goes to Raqqa.
ZAKARIA: To the capital?
BANGURA: To the capital, to their headquarter. And then the rest of them they have to take to the open markets. They call it the bazaar and that's where they auction them.
ZAKARIA: So they literally auction them on an open market?
BANGURA: On an open market, naked, because people have to examine them. You have to decide whether she has big breasts, whether she has big boobs, or whatever it is. And they ask them to open their mouths. It's a very humiliating experience. And so that's what fetches the price. So they negotiate. They will say, she's $2,000, $3,000, no, no, she's not good to be $3,000, look at the way she looks. I'll get her for $500.
And that's how they bargain. And so these women move from one person to the other. We've had a story where a woman has been sold for a pack of cigarettes because of course after somebody buying her, he took her, he used her for a while and was -- he got tired because they see them as slaves. And then he needs to sell her off. So they resell them over and over.
ZAKARIA: Now talk about the ones who go to Raqqa, these are the prettiest ones and they're -- again there's a hierarchy, right?
BANGURA: There's a hierarchy. The sheik is the most senior on the ground. After the sheik you have the emir. And after the emir you have the fighters. So the first choice is for the sheik. The most beautiful, the youngest one. I met one girl who -- the sheik who fell in (INAUDIBLE), quote-unquote, actually wanted to keep her for himself, so he had her name printed on his palm. So she couldn't be brought by any other --
ZAKARIA: And but again, even with these ones, once they've been used, they are cast aside.
BANGURA: They're cast aside or resold.
ZAKARIA: One of the things you describe is women who -- a woman who refused to perform an extreme sexual act was burned alive. So it is very clear that you have to behave like a slave.
BANGURA: I think it's much more than a slave. I think that these people mentally are sick. We have a moral crisis in this countries. And I think they're asking these girls to do acts that for a 12-year- old girl who has never had any sexual intercourse being approached by a 50-year-old man, asking to do some of the most terrible you and I can think, (INAUDIBLE). You can imagine how difficult. So the girl refused. And as a result of that, she was burnt alive. The Yazidi community tried to save her. They are supposed to fly out to Germany. I met the doctor himself who was doing all the arrangements. Unfortunately, she died.
ZAKARIA: Is this the worst of anything you've seen?
BANGURA: ISIS has no respect for international law, has no respect for international boundaries. At the same time, because they want to have their own caliphate, their state, so it is intentional for them in time to destroy the society, the community, the culture of all the areas they occupy. It is only by soldiering they can build their new caliphates. So, to them, it's part of their strategy. We destroy the society, we destroy the community, we destroy the norms and the respect to dehumanize the women. That's the way we build. And that's why they're also forcing the girls to get pregnant because they want to build a new state, a new population. And that's what they are doing. So the whole issue of forced marriage and sexual slavery is also that these girls who can produce babies who will be in their image, these are our children, because this is what is going to form the basis of our new state.
ZAKARIA: What can the average person do to help?
BANGURA: For me, I think the important issue is that we don't seem to understand ISIS. ISIS is a very formidable enemy. We cannot destroy them without understanding who they are, where they come from, what is their ideology, how they -- how they think. I think that's extremely important. That region will not settle if ISIS is still there, I have to tell you, because I've seen the devastation it's caused to Lebanon. I went to Damascus, I went to Iraq, I went to Turkey, and I went to Jordan. And that region, I can safely say, is almost like a region that is on fire. So I think the false - we have to have a regional approach. It's not something we can do on an individual basis -- country to country. So, that's why I've tried as much as to talk to as many people as I can within the Security Council in Europe to get them to understand we need to get our act together. This is not an enemy we can deal with like usually.
ZAKARIA: Zeinab Bangura, thank you for all THAT you're doing and thank you for coming on the show.
BANGURA: Thank you very much for lighting this. Because I think it's extremely important for the world to understand.
ZAKARIA: Coming up, a change of pace and some good news. We will tell you about an economic boom that could change the lives of over 1 billion people and maybe you, too, can get in on the action. Find out where next.
ZAKARIA: Now for our "What in the World" segment. It's being called the new e-frontier, a place where we'll soon witness a digital revolution. People are raving about the rise of the Internet in India, a bona fide gold rush that could transform the lives of over a billion people. A recent report by the Internet and Mobile Association of India and the Boston Consulting Group shows just how astonishingly fast the web is growing on the subcontinent. In 2001, there were only 7 million users of the Internet in India. By '09, there were 60 million. By 2014, that number had tripled to 190 million. But by 2018, there are projected to be around 580 million users, rivaling China's number of users and eclipsing the total population of the European Union.
Every day 58,000 Indians get connected to a social network for the first time, according to the report. Facebook, LinkedIn, and other companies are scrambling for market share.
As "The New York Times" has pointed out, India's own start-ups are booming too, with big investments in e-commerce by heavyweights like Softbank, Alibaba, and Rupert Murdoch. Flip cart, which sells everything from TVs to pet supplies, went from being worth $3 billion to $11 billion in one year, according to "The Times." Snap Deal, another billion-dollar outfit, told "The Times" that the value of the goods it sells is higher than that of any offline retailer in India.
In the next three years, the number of Internet jobs could quadruple, according to BCG. Maybe the most exciting aspect of this digital revolution is that much of the Web growth has been driven by mobile devices. They allow users to connect in remote areas, even if their local infrastructure is unreliable, leapfrogging laptop and desktop technology.
Rural users already made up 29 percent of India's Internet population in 2013, says BCG. But by 2018, they will make up 40 to 50 percent.
ZAKARIA: All of this new access to the modern world is already changing people's lives. If you're a student who lives far away from a good school, you can take courses online. If you're a farmer, you can sell your goods directly to consumers, skipping the middleman. If you're eligible for government services, you can access cash payments directly, bypassing bureaucracy, bypassing corruption, using your biometric government I.D.
Now, Internet coverage does need to be extended, of course. Prime Minister Narendra Modi's government is spending billions to connect India's 250,000 villages with broadband cable. It should happen in about three years, according to Reuters. That won't be easy. It's also important to extend awareness of the Internet to people who don't know how it can improve their lives. 70 percent of rural non-Web users don't even know about its existence, according to the IAMAI. But all this is likely to change, change fast, and on a big scale. There's a lot of hype in the world of technology, but this time this trend does look like it could be transformational for India and because of India's size, perhaps for the world.
Up next, the world's best restaurant list was released this week, and the big news is France is out and Spain, Singapore, and Thailand are in. That's an exaggeration, but we'll talk about it all with Dan Barber, who runs one of the six American hot spots that made the cut.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Countdown of the world's 50 best restaurants, 2015.
ZAKARIA: There is not a single French restaurant that made it to the world's ten best restaurants. Is that a sign of a post-French world of cuisine or sour grapes from people tired of French hauteur? And how to handle concerns about the amount of water it takes to grow plants and vegetables and the huge amounts of water it takes to raise cattle and chicken? Are we on a path that is unsustainable? Should you stop eating hamburgers? My next guest is a world-class chef recognized as a top 50 restaurateur on Monday, but he's also a gifted writer and he thinks hard about all the broader issues surrounding food. He happens to be one of the world's greatest chefs. Dan Barber is the chef at Manhattan's Blue Hill Restaurant, as well as its country cousin Stone Barnes, which is the one that got the accolades this week. Dan, pleasure to have you on.
DAN BARBER, CHEF, BLUE HILL & BLUE HILL AT STONE BARNS: Thank you. Nice to be here.
ZAKARIA: So the first thing that struck me about this, of course, let's admit these are all silly and arbitrary. Of course, the fact that you're on them --
BARBER: I all of the sudden find them a little less silly, but yes.
ZAKARIA: But what's interesting about them is if you look over time, even the few years they've done that, clearly there's a shift from the non-Western world -- from the Western world to the non-Western world and away from France and to a certain extent Italy. Is that, you know -- forget about the names of the specific restaurants. Is that basic shift correct?
BARBER: Yes, yeah. No, I think it is. I mean in part because it represents a broader spectrum of the population and in part because it represents cuisines that represent landscapes, represent cultures that haven't gotten their due. And so this list, I think, is a bit more democratic in the way that fine dining is influencing culture and everyday food for the future.
ZAKARIA: But one of the things that this drought reminds us of is just the environmental impact that all this wonderful food that we eat, it has. Nick Kristof had this column over the weekend. I'm sure you saw it. And he says, you know, how much water does it take for a ten-minute shower, a full load of laundry, ten almonds, and then he says and a pound of beef or a pound of chicken? And the answers are basically it's 25 gallons to take a bath, it is 1,800 gallons of water to make a pound of beef, 468 gallons for chicken, 880 gallons for a gallon of milk. It's staggering when you think about it.
BARBER: No, it is. But I would just push back on that a little bit and say, you know, those are all examples of how our American food system has decided to grow food and what we support in our everyday diets. But that's not representative of the rest of the world. The problem with American cuisine is that we lack a cuisine. We lack a history. We lack a culture around food. We were a lush country. We had incredible soil fertility. We had rainfall, we've had plenty of rain. And we had great geography. And we had incredible abundance. And our diet and our food system has benefitted from that in ways that are both positive, but also as we're seeing more recently, negative.
ZAKARIA: Isn't your solution, though, a kind of elite solution? OK, you have this beautiful restaurant that's actually on a farm.
ZAKARIA: And so my guess is that these numbers wouldn't be exactly accurate for you or certainly the --
BARBER: No, when you raise grass-fed beef, for example, you don't have those kind of numbers related to water. But Mr. Kristof was quoting what most Americans eat.
ZAKARIA: But you can't get scale -- you can't feed the country, you know, doing the Blue Hill model. If you're trying to feed 325 million Americans, surely there is going to have to be some factory farming model, or can one do it locally?
BARBER: First of all, you're not making me hungry. But second of all, I'm not so sure about that. I would only push back in the way that suggests that, you know, is the right model to say that for the future of cooking, we need to continually exhaust resources. Because to get to the billions of people, the 9 billion that we're going to need to feed in 2050, the idea is to put the pedal to the metal and exhaust as many resources as we can to get to that number and to get to those -- the dire need of feeding people who are hungry or go food insecure. The problem with that thinking is that what happens after we feed the 9 billion?
ZAKARIA: But you would want to replace the McDonald's of the world with little local restaurants that each forage around in their area to find local food?
ZAKARIA: I mean, I'm just trying to think how practical it is.
BARBER: I would like to replace the McDonald's of the world because the food doesn't taste good, it's not good for you. That's my first premise. My second premise is what replaces that is probably several different kinds of restaurants. A McDonald's that takes advantage of a local ecosystem, it takes advantage of what the ecology is telling you it wants to grow and then creating cooking and good food around that I think is a great fast food concept. I can't believe no one's done it. ZAKARIA: In your book, you talk about sustainable food in a somewhat
different way than people mean it also, which is you say you've got to use everything. That chefs have tended to pick, you know, the choice vegetable, the choice cut of meat. And you say that the only way to make this truly sustainable is you can't leave all that out. That feels like you're the schoolteacher telling the kid, you have got to eat --
BARBER: I know, I hate that.
ZAKARIA: Is it working?
My question is, is it working? If you can transform oxtail into something people are willing to eat, that's great.
BARBER: Well, for hundreds, thousands of years we were transforming oxtail into something to eat. The great cuisines of the world all use oxtail, just as they all use lowly grains like millet in North Africa or buckwheat in Japan or beans in Italian peasant culture. I mean all of these whether we're talking about the whole animal or we are talking about the whole farm, the basis of cuisine is to utilize everything. There is no waste. So in America, as I mentioned, we're never forced into that kind of negotiation. We're never forced into that culinary excellence because we had abundance, so you ate high on the hog. You ate this middle section of the pig or the steaks. Or you ate the grains like wheat, and corn, and soy, which is where our diet is today. And that's not -- that's the true definition of not being sustainable. We need to think about the entire system. And that means changing our diets.
ZAKARIA: Dan Barber, pleasure to have you on.
BARBER: Thank you.
ZAKARIA: Next on "GPS," a president has promised to resign if his opponents can locate something in his bathroom. What is it? We'll tell you when we come back.
ZAKARIA: This week Senator Lindsey Graham entered the 2016 presidential race. Graham has remained unmarried throughout his career, setting him apart from all the other presidential candidates currently in the race. And it brings me to my question of the week. Who was the last bachelor to assume the office of the American president? Is it James Buchanan, Andrew Jackson, Grover Cleveland, or John Tyler? Stay tuned and we'll tell you the correct answer.
This week's book of the week is "Midnight's Furies: the Deadly Legacy of India's Partition" by Nisid Hajari. The partition of India, which created India and Pakistan, is one of those historic events that remains searingly relevant today. It's one of the causes of the rise of Islamic radicalism, Jihadis in general, the Taliban in particular. It is also behind the dangerous rivalry between two nuclear armed powers that have three times gone to war. Hajari explores the roots of this tension in a beautifully written, deeply intelligent book about that crucial moment when Britain once again drew bad borders with calamitous consequences.
And now for "The Last Look." Ousted Ukrainian president Victor Yanukovych was well known for his over-the-top palace, which had everything from giant horse statues to fancy cars to toilets adorned with golden leaves. Well, now the leader of a nearby nation has been accused of having an over-the-top palace too. This time with golden toilet seats. Turkey's president Recep Tayyip Erdogan isn't even a candidate in this weekend's election, but he has been the target of some, well, potty talk from the opposition party. During the campaign, the leader of a rival party accused the president of installing golden toilet seats in his new palace in Ankara. Erdogan denied the allegations, is apparently suing the accuser for roughly $40,000, and challenged him to come to the palace and hunt for the gold. Erdogan vowed to resign the presidency if a single golden toilet is found.
But even if the quest for a golden throne is unsuccessful, the new presidential palace is not exactly modest. NPR noted it reportedly cost $615 million to build, but some say that the final price tag was even higher. It is also purported to have more than 1,000 rooms. To put that in perspective, the White House has 132 rooms and 35 bathrooms. Presumably all with porcelain toilets. With the goal of strengthening the presidency he has held since August, Erdogan has hit the stump hard for his party's candidates in the parliamentary elections, actions unheard of for someone in his position. Observers say his government has already expanded the nation's police powers and put in place some of the strictest Internet censorship in the world. After 12 years in office, even supporters of Erdogan concede he has let power go to his head in ways that are endangering Turkey's democracy. These elections will be an important test for the country in a region where there are precious few examples of well-functioning liberal democracies.
The correct answer to the "GPS" challenge question is "C." Grover Cleveland was the last bachelor to assume the office of the American presidency. He did so in 1885, but he got married while in office, and was the only president to have a White House wedding.
ZAKARIA: James Buchanan was the only lifelong bachelor to serve as president, but he preceded Cleveland by three decades.
Thanks to all of you for being part of my program this week. I will see you next week.