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Interview With Huma Abedin; Interview With IAEA Director General Rafael Grossi; Interview with Lakota People's Law Project Co-Director Chase Iron Eyes; Interview with Indigenous Youth Climate Activist Tokata Iron Eyes; Interview with 12-time Tennis Singles Grand Slam Champion Billie Jean King. Aired 2-3p ET
Aired November 04, 2021 - 14:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
CHRISTIANE AMANPOUR, CNN INTERNATIONAL HOST: Hello, everyone, and welcome to AMANPOUR.
Here's what's coming up.
RAFAEL GROSSI, IAEA DIRECTOR GENERAL: Without nuclear, it would be very, very difficult, if not impossible, to get to the ambitious decarbonization
goals we are trying to set to ourselves.
AMANPOUR (voice-over): The U.N.'s Rafael Grossi makes the case for why nuclear energy is green energy and a solution to the climate crisis.
Then: She's the loyal aide Hillary Clinton calls a second daughter. Now Huma Abedin steps out of the shadows for a candid reveal of her brushes
with success and scandal.
CHASE IRON EYES, CO-DIRECTOR, LAKOTA PEOPLE'S LAW PROJECT: We are in a fight for our lives. We are in a fight for our birthrights.
AMANPOUR: Father and daughter activist Chase and Tokata Iron Eyes tell Hari Sreenivasan about honoring their ancestors in their struggle for
Are you ready?
BILLIE JEAN KING, FORMER U.S. TENNIS CHAMPION: Come on.
AMANPOUR: Billie Jean King tells us about being the first woman ever to have a major global tournament named in her honor.
AMANPOUR: Welcome to the program, everyone. I'm Christiane Amanpour in London.
It is being hailed as a major breakthrough at COP 26. Today, the U.K. and the U.S. are among 20 countries pledging to stop investing public money
into fossil fuel projects abroad. The world leaders have now left Glasgow, but the hard work of saving our planet marches on at the summit.
Someone you might not expect that the climate conference is the head of the U.N. nuclear watchdog, the International Atomic Energy Agency. Rafael
Grossi is on a mission to pitch nuclear energy as a crucial stepping-stone to a greener world.
That's provocative in many quarters. So is the idea of kick-starting the Iran nuclear deal, which Grossi also has to verify. Talks will resume at
the end of this month.
I spoke to him in Glasgow at the COP summit, and I asked him whether his voice is actually being heard.
AMANPOUR: Director General Grossi welcome to the program.
GROSSI: Thank you very much.
AMANPOUR: So, the question is, are you a welcome guest here, or are you struggling with your nuclear power agenda to get a seat at the table?
GROSSI: We have come a long way.
In the past, a few years ago, it would have been unthinkable to be discussing nuclear in this context. But at the end of the day, science and
the facts impose themselves. And, today, we are here. Some welcome us. Some listen to us.
AMANPOUR: Do any out-and-out reject you, because you know it's very controversial?
GROSSI: Well, it's less and less controversial, as I was saying.
Even countries which have been militantly anti-nuclear, now it's obvious that, without nuclear, it would be very, very difficult, if not impossible,
to get to the ambitious decarbonization goals we are trying to set to ourselves.
So, I think -- I mean, nobody's obliged to do that, to do it. But it's clear that there is a real tangible contribution of nuclear to this.
AMANPOUR: I mean, you say nuclear energy is green. How do you mean? Because, again, it flies in the face of a lot of popular conventional
GROSSI: Narratives. Those are narratives.
The facts point elsewhere. The fact is that this is -- basically, it's an energy that is dispatchable. And it's clean. It doesn't have almost any CO2
emissions. Of course, people say, what about the waste? The waste, there are ways to deal with it. It's -- the volumes are very small.
There have never been problems with that. So -- and others will say, well, what about nonproliferation? You have the nuclear watchdog. So, if you
want, you will always be able to move the goalposts.
AMANPOUR: But, actually, it's interesting you bring that up, because you are the nuclear watchdog.
GROSSI: Yes, it is.
AMANPOUR: People know about the IAEA, it's, like, trying to limit Iran's ambitions on nuclear weaponry. I mean, that's the whole -- that's the whole
thing we know you about.
GROSSI: Well, thank you for mentioning that, because we do much more than that.
We do nuclear medicine, radiotherapy, water management. We fight pandemics. So, it's a spectrum. Of course, the nonproliferation side captures the eye,
and rightly so, because it is about preventing nuclear weapons from coming. And we continue to do that.
But the -- I would say it's the challenges of the day that bring this -- the mandate of the IAEA in a higher level of prominence, I would say.
AMANPOUR: Can I just get back to that in a second?
AMANPOUR: Because there is a lot of buzz about whether the Iran nuclear talks will recommence.
President Biden seemed to suggest at the G20 that they are ready to resume. What do you know about that?
GROSSI: I know that they are ready for resume. I was in Washington as well. And this is what they tell me.
And I know that everybody else is saying that they all want to return. But, of course, this all want to return may mean different things for the
different players. So this is the crux of the matter. This is where we have to see what is needed from every side.
And, of course, our role is to be the guarantors, as you know, the very fires of whatever political agreement is reached. So I think the intentions
are there. But it's not an easy way. You have been following this for many years.
So, you say Washington wants to. Does Iran want to, the current government in Iran?
GROSSI: They say so. They say so. And I think that the issue here is to try to reconcile those statements with what is needed to get there.
AMANPOUR: So, what from what we know, what's needed is, the Iranians want sanctions lifted, and they have just yet again said, yes, it's all well and
good President Biden saying he wants to have these talks, but how can we do that if they keep imposing more and new sanctions?
I mean, that's kind of a reasonable position.
GROSSI: Well, this is what they expect. There are expectations from every side. And I would say that others have other expectations, from Iran as
AMANPOUR: You, yourself, in an "F.T." interview, have warned that Iran's nuclear surveillance, I guess the implementation that they put in, is not
intact, is no longer intact.
GROSSI: It's been weakened. It's been weakened. It's a fact.
And with -- in this situation, it is becoming increasingly difficult for us to do the job. We take this with realism, because we know that it is -- it
may be part of the political discussion, but what I'm telling them is that there is a limit, there is a limit.
If they want to have somebody saying that things are correct and there is no deviation, whatever, we have to have the ability to do what we need to
do. And at this moment, we don't have it.
AMANPOUR: What do you need?
GROSSI: We need the access which is commensurate with a nuclear program of such sophistication and ambition.
AMANPOUR: From your perspective, as the IAEA, where are they in their nuclear development?
Before the actual -- I guess it was 2012, the Iran nuclear deal, 2015?
GROSSI: 2015, '15, yes.
AMANPOUR: Yes. It started, I guess, negotiations in 2012.
AMANPOUR: It was all about they're a month away or...
AMANPOUR: ... from the ability to have a nuclear weapons grade.
GROSSI: Yes. Yes.
AMANPOUR: Where are they now?
GROSSI: Well, those lines have long gone.
I mean, there were discrete, finite amounts that were agreed of enriched uranium, heavy water, the numbers of centrifuges, which are these things
where you enrich uranium. All of that has been superseded by facts. And these came, if you remember, as a retaliation for the withdrawal from the
agreement in 2018 by the United States.
AMANPOUR: By President Trump.
GROSSI: So, they started, like, a tit-for-tat sort of thing.
At the moment, the important thing, let's -- the positive is that they say, we want to go back.
AMANPOUR: What does the other side want, the group, including the U.S.?
GROSSI: Well, from what I know, because this is not nuclear specifically, they would like to see the agreement being expanded into covering other
areas of geostrategic relevance.
Are you able to weigh in on that?
GROSSI: Not at all. I mean, we are looking -- and we have enough, I can tell you. We are looking on the nuclear-specific parts of the agreement as
it stands now.
And this is difficult enough, let me tell you.
AMANPOUR: Because of their lack of cooperation on the surveillance?
GROSSI: Because of the difficulties of things, in themselves, and also because they have been -- I mean, we have been collateral damage of the --
of this whole political...
AMANPOUR: Your verification...
AMANPOUR: ... collateral damage.
GROSSI: The problem is, without us, there is no agreement. And I don't say it with any arrogance, please.
It's simply, we need to verify. Without verifying, how are the powers that be going to walk into a negotiation without knowing what is the real
situation on the ground? It's obvious. It's a no-brainer.
AMANPOUR: Now, you want to go to Iran. You have already been, I believe?
GROSSI: I have been there once since the new government took office. I had a technical discussion.
And we agreed that we need to engage politically at high level. We need to get to know to each other. We need to start a relationship in order to
establish, I hope, a modicum of trust.
AMANPOUR: Let's get back to nuclear energy as a greener energy.
AMANPOUR: So, look, there are many people like yourself, obviously, led by your agency, but there have been some others in recent years, we should put
the scientific facts forward that actually nuclear energy is cleaner. It's safer. The accidents are very minimal compared to the amount.
AMANPOUR: And yet it is the accidents and the nuclear waste, as we were just touching on, that gets the activists and those who don't like nuclear
GROSSI: Yes. Yes.
AMANPOUR: And, of course, what was the big accident? Fukushima.
AMANPOUR: One of your biggest backers Germany, which was going full gangbusters towards nuclear energy, has now pulled back and permanently.
Angela Merkel says, it's not just me. It's future German chancellors will not go back to nuclear energy.
What would you say to her?
GROSSI: To paraphrase someone, it's the politics. It's not the science. It's not the technology.
The same country, Germany, that had in 2010, in October 2010, cited that nuclear energy was a transition energy, and would be expanded, six months
down the line, decided that -- to phase out.
AMANPOUR: Because of the Fukushima accident. I mean, it was a big deal.
GROSSI: It was a big deal. No one should deny that.
And I would say this is, also, to be, self-critical, I think nuclear -- and I have been trying to emphasize that -- perhaps was not as forthcoming, as
engaging, as open, as transparent as it should be. We have to face what happened. What happened happened.
Does this mean that this defines the industry, the possibility of the industry, what it does for the world? No, much as a plane going down does
not define air commercial transportation. But you have to deal with the issues. And you have to make sure that it doesn't again.
And mind you, what happened then and what happened in Chernobyl, where mistakes attributable to human mistakes, to negligence, to a system that
was crazy, or whatever, but not to the technology that we have.
So I think it's important to have a clear-sided debate, face the facts, and nuclear will be helping.
AMANPOUR: Can we just be clear? Was Fukushima, in your view, in the view of the IAEA, a nuclear accident or a tsunami, a natural disaster?
GROSSI: Well, it was caused by the tsunami, but there were failures in terms of the safety configuration of the plant.
The plant -- in fact, you remember, there was an earthquake first, 9-point whatever. It was a huge thing. So, and, at that moment, the plant responded
like a Swiss or a Japanese watch, stopped immediately, everything fine and dandy.
But then the tsunami hit. And there were issues with the operator, in the sense that they have not done the things us, the IAEA, was saying that
should be done to protect against this wall of water.
AMANPOUR: It appears that the decision how to include nuclear energy is going to be adjudicated by the E.U., correct, by the end of this year?
GROSSI: For Europeans.
AMANPOUR: For Europeans, yes.
GROSSI: We have a big role.
AMANPOUR: Of course.
GROSSI: But for Europeans, yes.
AMANPOUR: And that's important.
GROSSI: It's very important, because the moment you include nuclear in the taxonomy, this makes it...
AMANPOUR: What does that mean, taxonomy?
GROSSI: The taxonomy is the way they analyze each and different energy sources to determine whether they do not do any significant harm to the
AMANPOUR: So it's kind of a tick or a cross.
GROSSI: Yes, you check the box or not, yes.
But when somebody says you don't, then the reverberations down the financial and investment line are tremendous, because private investors,
institutional investors, creditors will not put the money there. So what is very important is that, at the scientific level, European experts already
confirmed that nuclear does not do any significant harm, or more than anything else out there.
So, now this has to be translated into the political actions that be. I was last week in Brussels discussing with the different instances in the big
Brussels machinery. And I'm pretty optimistic about that, yes.
AMANPOUR: That will be a big step.
GROSSI: It will be a huge step.
AMANPOUR: This seems like a great time for you and for nuclear energy.
GROSSI: It is, because this is a convergence of facts.
On the one hand, we have all these ambitions. We know how difficult they are. We know that you have a source of energy that is already today
producing 25 percent or even more of the clean energy all over the world. You have renewables. Of course, these are very important. We are very
friendly to renewables.
The issue is, as you know, that they are intermittent, and you need what you call baseload energy. And, for that, when you turn off, or you phase
out a nuclear power plant, what would you replace it with? Normally, people go to more fossil. So, how do you reconcile saying that we have this
horrible thing and that the world is crumbling, and then you open up more coal plants or more gas?
So I think it's obvious, and the solution is there. It's a matter of overcoming these barriers. And some of them are bureaucratic, some of them
are cultural, but 2021 is not 1980 or 1975. Everything has evolved. And mentalities should also do so.
AMANPOUR: Director General Rafael Grossi, thank you very much for joining us.
GROSSI: It's been a pleasure. Any time.
AMANPOUR: And, again, the negotiations of the COP 26 summit in Glasgow continue.
And next: What is it like to walk alongside history? As the top aide to one of the most influential women in the world, my next guest knows all too
You have often seen Huma Abedin beside Hillary Clinton, crisscrossing the globe on important matters of state. She usually prefers to stay out of the
spotlight. But Abedin's private life became a public liability with the actions of her then husband, Anthony Weiner, a series of scandals that some
say ultimately cost Hillary Clinton the presidency in 2016.
And Abedin is now telling her own story on her own terms in a new memoir called "Both/And."
And she's joining me now from New York.
So, welcome to the program, Huma Abedin.
Let me start by asking you just what we said, that you are so used to being behind the scenes, out of the spotlight, servicing your principal, who was
Hillary Clinton. What made you come forward now? And what is it like to be in the spotlight very clearly?
HUMA ABEDIN, AUTHOR, "BOTH/AND: A LIFE IN MANY WORLDS": Well, first of all, Christiane, thank you for having me. I'm thrilled to be on your show.
I confess I do prefer to be in the background. I have been invisible for most of my life in public service. As you mentioned, I worked for Hillary.
I have worked for Hillary for 25 years. And, for me, it was always about the mission, it was about the cause, it was about whichever job she was
doing, and I was there to support her. And I enjoyed being in that role.
But I decided after a while that my silence meant that somebody else was telling my story. And that meant they were writing my history. And so, for
me, I'm glad to finally be able to share my own story, my own truth, some of my history, and I have really enjoyed putting it down in this book.
AMANPOUR: So, a lot of that, obviously, involves the denouement of your marriage and the huge ripple effects that had, and we will get to that in a
But I want to start, as you say, at kind of the beginning of your story, your history. The book actually begins with a letter that you received from
your father. He died when you were much younger, I think, a teenager.
And in that letter, he writes. He titles it "Thought For the Day."
"As an American, a Muslim, and as a member of a fairly decent family, a commitment should be a commitment."
Tell me how you internalized that. What did that mean, a commitment should be a commitment?
ABEDIN: Well, my father was a huge figure in my life. And, as you mentioned, I lost him when I was 17.
I'm the product of two immigrant parents. My father was from India, my mother from Pakistan. And in the '60s, they were both Fulbright Scholars.
They gave up their families and their lives for this dream, for the American dream. And they came to the United States. I was born here.
And they then taught us. When I was 2, we moved to Saudi Arabia, which is where I spent most of my formative years. And my parents' whole approach to
the world was both being proud of our own identity, cultural identity, faith identity, sort of moral -- having morals, values and principles, but
also being curious about the other, other languages, other cultures, other religions.
I had great privilege to travel the world with my parents. And my father's whole approach to life was exploring what the other is and having
conversations, as his fellow -- he was an academic, and his fellow colleagues would say, don't go have conversations in places where even the
angels fear to tread.
But he was not afraid of having these conversations because he had such great commitment to his own values. And he really passed that on to us. My
father was a lover of history. But he did tell me, he would remind us when we were young, your eyes are at the front of your head for a reason. It's
to look forward, so to understand the past, but to look forward.
And those were the values he passed on to me. When you make a commitment, you honor that commitment. And I have tried to do that in his honor, but
it's just also how I was raised. Both my mother and my father raised me that way.
AMANPOUR: So I love that. Your eyes are in the front of your head for a reason.
So, were you then armed, do you think, for what happened to you? Because you found yourself -- and his letter started to you, "as an American and as
ABEDIN: That's right.
AMANPOUR: There you were in public life to an extent? Well, yes, in public life, when some of the worst anti-immigrant, anti-Muslim rhetoric, even
from the very top of American politics, was raining down, not least after 9/11 and then again during 2016 after President Trump took on that kind of
You were targeted by certain prominent members of Congress.
Let me just read what they said, like, slurs, like a Muslim Brotherhood loyalist -- that was you -- who infiltrated the State Department, while
professing allegiance to Sharia law.
Those were -- that was what was being hurled your way. How did that feel and how did you deal with it?
ABEDIN: Well, you started with a letter my father wrote, and that is the both/and.
You can be an American patriot and a Muslim. You can be both/and. I was raised that way. And I am that way. But I write in detail about how, when I
entered the White House in 1996, and all the different phases where I saw my faith, when I walked into the White House gates, there weren't that many
Muslims, there weren't that many people in the White House who were fasting for Ramadan or finding a little time in the middle of the day to pray in
the conference room.
But I did that, and I was surrounded by a community of people. It's why I felt more that I was working for a cause. It wasn't even a party. I wasn't
even sure if I was a Democrat when I started working in the Clinton administration.
But I felt like there was a lot of curiosity about my faith, about my background, and I was able to sort of explore the world, share my faith
beliefs, but I also saw the things that were happening around the world, whether it was the bombings in 1998 in Africa, the USS Cole, and 1993, the
first World Trade Center bombing, and then, of course, 9/11, seeing how these incidents were then taken and turned my faith into sort of this
And in 2012, to have this accusation made by sitting members of Congress was probably the most shocking thing I personally had to endure in all the
years in public life. And it was not just hard for me, frankly. I, at that point, was used to sort of false accusations. But it was the damage to my
family's reputation and name from coming from that part of the world.
But that's so important. And so it is one of the many reasons I wrote this book was really to refute those accusations. But it was very hard. And I
also -- I actually argue that I think I was really just the appetizer, that 2012, when these accusations were made about Muslims being these suspicious
people, was really amplified four years later, when Hillary ran for president in 2016.
AMANPOUR: OK, so let's go back to when you when you joined.
I mean, in 1996, you joined as an intern on Hillary Clinton's staff, when she was still first lady. And you call it and many others have called it
What actually is Hillaryland? What defines Hillaryland? And you have talked about the cause that you have been committed to. What is that cause?
ABEDIN: Well, for me, when I -- growing up in the Middle East, in that part of the world, I -- there's -- you're sort of -- at least for me, I was
raised in an environment where there we call it the ummah, which is the community, the Muslim community.
And we're -- you're surrounded by support, sort of the joint family system -- filling -- there's -- you always show up for a wedding. You always
attend a funeral. There's always somebody there in good times and bad.
And walking into the White House in 1996 as a 21-year-old intern, what I felt was -- I tell the story of walking in and being surrounded by these
women, all of whom seem to be involved in important work at the time. One of the issues that Hillary Clinton was spending a lot of time working on --
it was a year after her famous Beijing speech, where she said human rights or women's rights and women's rights are human rights.
To me, it was about doing something in service of others. And I was part of -- what I found my ummah from Saudi Arabia transferred really almost
immediately to the first lady's office. And I -- as I like to say, Hillaryland is a club. It comes with lifetime membership. We're always
there for each other. I can call somebody today, I haven't talked them in 20 years, and we're always there for each other.
It's the culture of caring and support, and that culture exists because we have these feelings because Hillary Clinton has created this culture. As I
say, it's a club that comes with lifetime membership.
AMANPOUR: So, let me ask you, because, again, you were mostly behind the scenes. What exactly was your job description?
ABEDIN: It's a very interesting thing I think about all the time.
It started -- I don't think if I did the same job for Hillary, I could -- I could have stayed that long. I told myself right after the Clintons left
the White House, the day I woke up and did not want to go to work was the day I would give notice. And that was 25 years ago.
And I think, for me, it is because she was always doing something different. And I go back to this notion of writing the book. I believe my
father always thought I was going to be a writer. He believed in my writing. And when I was a little girl, he came back from a trip to London
and he hands me a book called "Silas Marner" written by George Eliot.
And I didn't understand. It was way beyond my grasp. And I read the introduction and saw that George Eliot was actually Mary Ann Evans. And I
go to my father and say, why did she have to write under a man's name?
And he said, well, in the Victorian era, women weren't taken seriously as writers. And so she used a man's named. But don't worry. When you write
your book, you're going to use your name, and everyone's going to take it seriously.
ABEDIN: And I -- one of the first things after Hillary left the White House was, she was writing a memoir and said, can I work on this?
Whatever she's done, I have been able to participate in some way. And I think the word that people have used to describe the job is really aide-de-
camp. It's sort of a little bit of everything, and a lot of it is managing, but it is hard to describe, and I think it's one of the reasons why maybe
I'm a little bit puzzling to some people.
AMANPOUR: Obviously, this is all leading to the implosion of your marriage and the effect that it had on you and your family, but also on Hillary
Clinton, and particularly just those few days before the 2016 election, and you write about it, when then FBI Director Comey decided to reopen an
investigation into Hillary Clinton's e-mails because of e-mails that were found on your former -- now former husband's laptop from you.
Cast your mind back to then, and tell me today what you think and how you think you and your former husband and all the scandal that surrounded him
torpedoed her election prospects.
ABEDIN: Well, there was a lot going on in 2016. As is now documented fact, there were so many outside factors that affected how that race ended.
She wrote -- Hillary wrote her own book detailing that. But, obviously, that moment 11 days before the election to receive this shocking news was a
trauma that is going to stay with me for the rest of my life.
And at that point in the election, to endure something unprecedented, had never been done in the last 70 years in sort of FBI history, I didn't
understand. I still don't understand. I had cooperated throughout that investigation. And it -- as I say, in the book, I picked up the phone and
called Anthony and said, if she loses this election, it will be because of you and me.
And I did carry that. It took me to a very dark place post-election. But I have had to work through that and through a lot of therapy to get to the
ABEDIN: But I will tell you, the one person who's never held me responsible is my boss and is -- were all my former colleagues.
AMANPOUR: Your boss, of course, being Hillary Clinton.
AMANPOUR: Let me talk about this idea of commitment.
You have been clearly committed professionally and personally to Hillary. You have been committed, until you were no longer, to your marriage and to
your husband, to the point that you actually went out publicly to defend him after the second round of allegations and evidence of his sexting and
the rest of it.
I'm going to play a sound bite. And then I'm going to ask you why you did it and what made you change after that.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ABEDIN: Anthony's made some horrible mistakes, both before he resigned from Congress and after.
But I do very strongly believe that that is between us and our marriage. We discussed all of this before Anthony decided he would run for mayor. So,
really, what I want to say is, I love him, I have forgiven him, I believe in him.
And as we have said from the beginning, we are moving forward.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: So, I mean, look, you said that in 2013. You clearly changed your mind because you're no longer with him, although I know you're co-
Hillary Clinton and your mother, we read from your book, were against you going public in that way. Reflect on how you feel about it now, and I guess
also what you hope that your son when he grows up will get out of your book and what he will learn and what his takeaway will be.
ABEDIN: Well, I think that a lot of people look at my relationship with Anthony from a 2021 perspective.
And just taking people back to 2011, when this had first started, and I was -- when the first time the story broke, I was not even 12 weeks' pregnant.
It was -- we were living this incredible life. I was a newlywed. I was in shock. I didn't understand the behavior.
It was this notion of doing something that was enraging, that was specific to online behavior. And I really -- I think I was in shock, trauma. I
wrote, you know, two chapters in the book. One is called, "Shame, Shame, Go Away," the other is "Elephant in the Room."
There was so much shame and insecurity, you know, that came from that experience. And we really were in a bunker together for a period of time.
And in 2013, when I gave the press conference that you just played, you know, I felt I had a responsibility to stand at that podium because I had
encouraged him to run for mayor. I -- at that point in my life, I thought I could fix things, I didn't understand the mental health challenges, I
didn't understand the deterioration, and I knew nothing about addiction. And one of the reasons why I chose to share my story, I know a lot of
people say, what is wrong with her and what was she thinking, it is why I share exactly what I was thinking because I made every decision that I
thought was right for me and my family and my son.
And you asked about my son. And I hope when he reads this book, he will say, I am proud of what my mother has done and what she tried to do and I'm
glad she tried to help my dad. I really do want him to be proud of legacy, his grandparents and me as well. And to know the truth. I do think it's
important for our children to know the truth from us and to know it's OK to not be OK.
ABEDIN: I wasn't OK for a while. And I'm now finally on the other side and I'm glad to be here.
AMANPOUR: Huma Abedin, author of "Both/And," thank you for sharing that story with us. Thanks a lot.
Now, the father and daughter team, the duo, who have chosen to really go for the climate and try to save their area of America, Chase and Tokata
Iron Eyes became central to the 2016 protest against the Dakota Access Pipeline, which carries oil through the Dakotas, Iowa and Illinois. It's
currently under investigation for potential environmental harm. And here they are speaking with Hari Sreenivasan about how their tribe's
demonstrations moved the dial and why their fight for indigenous justice continues.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HARI SREENIVASAN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Christian, thank you. Thank you for joining us. I want to give people a background. I think
people might have been familiar with you, if they are with what happened with the pipeline and protests taking place there. And you were facing six
years in prison for this. And why was it so important for you to take that stand at that time?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SREENIVASAN: Christiane, thanks. Chase Iron Eyes, Tokata Iron Eyes, thanks so much for joining us.
First, I want to give people a background. Chase, I think might have been familiar with you, if they are, with what happened with the Dakota Access
Pipeline and the protests that were taking place there years ago. And you, at a point, were facing six years in prison for this. And I just -- if you
can encapsulate why was it so important for you to take that stand at that time.
CHASE IRON EYES, CO-DIRECTOR, LAKOTA PEOPLE'S LAW PROJECT: Thank you. And very good morning to everybody. My is Chase We Iron Eyes.
We were living in what is now, you know, Morton County, in Derby (ph) Country, these are the site of the governments, of the law enforcement
agencies that inflicted great violence against unarmed water protectors, unarmed Standing Rock nationalist, just four to five years ago. And I was
bearing witness to, I was on the ground giving myself to this cause because we at Standing Rock were trying to mind our own business.
And then, here comes Kelcy Warren, Energy Transfer Partners, big extractive, highly militarized industrial complex comes to my front door
and says, look, Mr. Indian and your children, you are to longer going to live in peace. I am here to disturb your peace. We're going to violate your
territorial integrity as the nation, as a Sioux nation, as the Standing Rock, the Oceti Sakowin, they came with violence to put this pipeline in
our territory without our free prior and informed consent.
So, we were just defending ourselves. And the rest of the world stood with us. Tens of thousands of people came and stood with us on the ground. They
gave of their time, their energy, their earning potentials, their liberties, their freedoms, everybody recognizes that we are in a fight for
our lives, we are in a fight for our birth rights, our natural rights, our constitutional rights, and for indigenous nations, our treaty rights. We
find ourselves continuously at the forefront of the fight against eco collapse. We are literally trying to save and redeem all of humanity. So, I
had no chance but to defend what was right there.
SREENIVASAN: Tokata, I want to ask why was it important for you to be there and make your choice heard?
TOKATA IRON EYES, INDIGENOUS YOUTH CLIMATE ACTIVIST: Yes, when I was at the protest, I was 13. So, 12 years old the pipeline project had been
proposed. And essentially, what had happened is these relatives of ours had come into the school to tell us the effects of the pipeline and just about
how long it would take to get into the water systems of our community if it were to break. And it was something like five minutes to get into the most
immediate community next to the project. It was something like 10 minutes to spread to the school system, 15 to get to the whole community.
Here is somebody telling you you're about to be in a state of emergency where you're unsure if you have clean drinking water. And so, it seemed
pretty obvious, pretty clear to us that something needed to be done. And it was important for me just to understand the gravity of what it meant to
pick up your own voice and use it a as a tool, as an indigenous person, as an indigenous woman, these things are radical acts. And they are carrying
on the legacies of hundreds of years of anticolonial resistance and we are only continuing the work forward.
SREENIVASAN: Chase, at the time, there were moments where there were dogs sicked on the protesters. There was water being sprayed on people when it
was 20 degrees out knowing that it could make people hypothermic. While you're standing there through this, did you think that the outcome would be
what it was?
C. IRON EYES: When you're there on the front line in front of deadly attack dogs, which are use of deadly force by legal definition, when you're
there, like on November 20th and you're witnessing national guard, private military contractors, county police, municipal law enforcement deliberately
and recklessly endangering the lives of unarmed water protectors by the hundreds by spraying them with water in 26 -- 24-degree temperatures in the
frigid Dakotas, you understand there's a line. There's a line that we are expected to confine ourselves within in.
In consumer culture, in extractive consumer culture, it is extremely important that the world never forget what happened at Standing Rock
because what at Standing Rock is being carried out right now at COP26. People are calling for justice. We're calling for climate justice. And
also, the climate is calling for justice in her own regard. So, for me to have to face six years of imprisonment for my daughter to have to be
surveilled by a private military contractors, tracking her every movement, where she's flying to, who she's speaking with, these are aspects of an
impending fight, an ongoing fight for our rights to free speech, our rights to peacefully assemble, our rights to be free from illegal searches and
seizures and big tech surveillance. Fascism of in all of its forms cannot be accepted by the American people, by our people. We simply it's too much
SREENIVASAN: Tokata, take us sort of from what you learned in Standing Rock and in the pipelines and the protests and how you see that translating
to this larger use movement sticking up for the climate and trying to hold people with power to account.
T. IRON EYES: I learned a lot at Standing Rock. That -- like specifically being right that -- like we were never alone in the fight. And that
actually, it wasn't only the fossil fuel industry, it was an entire system. Like learning that your enemy actually doesn't have like a singular name or
face and accepting right that -- like you are battling an industry in and of itself, something that is like completely almost intangible,
incomprehensible and then, deciding that you're going to do it any way.
And like it comes at great risk. I mean, I was 13 years old. I had no idea about the consequences of what it would mean to become a voice for a
movement like this in any capacity. And yes, taking it like two COP26, I'm not going to COP26 because I'm taking 18 credits right now. I genuinely
cannot be forced to make a decision between my education as a college student and between my future as a global citizen. Neither of those things
And to see that there are hundreds upon hundreds of young activists who are taking time out of their lives, already fully like scheduled and booked to
go to this conference, right, where people are being denied access to the meetings that really count, where people are acting like this is a choice.
This is not a choice. COP -- like COP26 -- like listen to that in and of itself, this thing has happened 26 times and we are still where we are, 26
times. And I was thinking about that in trying to make my decision if I'm going to go to COP and something that kept coming back to me is that there
will be another one next year. And that's [bleep] frustrating.
SREENIVASAN: Chase, I want to ask, are you, I don't know if the word is optimistic or hopeful, but what do you think can be accomplished at these
conversations, especially in the context of indigenous voices from not just the United States throughout America but around the world and how they are
represented at the table, so to speak, where these decisions are happening?
C. IRON EYES: I think that the human species is in a very vulnerable and teachable moment. Partly because we're now in appreciation, in growing
appreciation and cognizance of the human species' role in collapsing our ecology. That is something that the human species has accomplished in a
very short order, but it's not because this is what we want. It is because the petrol chemical extractive giants that determine the foreign and energy
policy of nation states have not listened to indigenous nations.
We have been trying, for all of my childhood, for all of my father and my mother's lives, they have fought, bled for and died for indigenous
liberation. The descendants and the relatives of Berta Caceres and the thousands of people who have been murdered, you know, in our country we get
surveilled, we get threatened with six years in prison. In other countries, people get murdered. We need justice for all of those ecological
protectors, we need consequences.
We are the only people, the only agents of change who can push for this. Our elected leaders are going to listen to what's happening in the streets,
what's happening with tribal nations, what happens at line three, what happened at Standing Rock, our entire country almost burned to the ground
when George Floyd was murdered. This is indicative that the social contract, the terms under which humans are willing to live, you know, the
contours of what economic justice looks like, what social justice looks like, racial justice, all of those are negotiable right now.
So, I am completely encouraged because once you liberate, once you make progress, evolutionary progress, there is no going back to whatever you
just came from. And Standing Rock changed global consciousness on that level. We're seeing the results of that. COP26, it is useful for what it
is. President Biden is there. John Kerry is there. Grassroots indigenous organizations and people as well as organizations like the American
Congress of American Indians are representing our perspective on a global scale.
At home, Deb Haaland has been named the first cabinet level secretary, the first indigenous woman to be named to a level of -- to a position of that
magnitude. So, I am 100 percent encouraged. We don't have a choice as humanity. We've got to change the way that we operate. The way that we walk
in our lives.
SREENIVASAN: Tokata, I want to also ask you, as a young indigenous woman, about the mass graves that we found in North America, in schools and what
happened. And I wonder as you're learning about the world right now, do you connect all these different dots about what's happening with the climate
right now, what happened to your ancestors, what's happening to your peers?
T. IRON EYES: Learning about the mass graves in Canada like while being in school in Massachusetts has been something that like I have -- like I have
really no idea how I reckon with it. What does it mean to commit yourself to an institution that was once used as a tool of genocide against your
people? The same curriculum, the same histories, the same maps, right, that like those children were looking at, I'm still referencing. And the people
around us are willfully ignorant, willfully quiet about that violence. And it has continued for so long.
And so, when I think about all of those it bodies who have yet to be found, all of those bodies who have already been uncovered, I give thanks but I
truly feel that I am carrying on the work of those human beings who didn't get a chance to see it through in their own lives. Yes. No, it's completely
a generational fight and I think that's also why joy is so important. Recognizing that every piece of you has already been lived in somebody else
in our grandmothers and that all of those children were having the same thoughts that I am while I'm in school. And yes, I just -- I want to be
able to carry that legacy in a really important way and that work is desperately needed right now.
SREENIVASAN: Chase, what's it like to watch your daughter carry on this mantle of your work? Are you putting too much on her shoulders?
C. IRON EYES: I would say that sometimes it's too heavy. But I also know that this is our responsibility. I know I was born in 1978 and that the
imposition of the reservation era was the time of my grandfather. I know that it what we call history, how we ended up in the situations that we are
all in today is not ancient. I know that lies are being told in our institutions, of education, of media, of law, of politics. And I know that
we are standing on the shoulders of giants who died, who bled, who sacrificed for us to be free, for us to voice the substance of their lives.
And I know that that responsibility is not liked.
I know that Tokata had to grow up way too soon. I know that her mother moved us back to the reservation for a reason. And I have unshakable
strength and knowledge in our purpose, we have been spending a lot of our lives, a lot of our energy building bridges to those outside of the
indigenous world view who know intrinsically, who know in their hearts, in their minds that we have to seek a different path on this earth that life
is too short to just go along with extractive consumer culture.
We see the imbalance. We feel it. We can't deny it. And indigenous nations are here with their hands open and their arms open saying, let's come
together and let's begin to heal.
SREENIVASAN: Chase Iron Eyes, Tokata Iron Eyes, thank you both for your time.
C. IRON EYES: Thank you very much.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: Heartfelt struggle for their own nation and, of course, for the future of our humanity.
And finally, the inaugural Billy Jean King Cup is in full swing in Prague, the Czech Republic. With Russia due to face-off against the United States
in a tenth semifinal. Formally known as the Federation Cup, it was renamed last year to honor the great Billie Jean King who won it a total of seven
times as a player and four more times as a captain.
Billie Jean King joins us now from Prague. And welcome back to the program.
You always seem to be setting more milestones and breaking more frontiers. I guess I just want to ask you. You're in your 70s. How does it feel to
keep, you know, breaking barriers? You have the former Flushing Meadow now called the Billie Jean King Tennis Center in New York. You've got the
Federation Cup now called the Billie Jean Cup. Is it going to your head?
BILLIE JEAN KING, 12-TIME TENNIS SINGLES GRAND SLAM CHAMPION: No, what it does, Christiane -- anyway, it's great to see you. No, what it does is I
just keep seeing the word responsibility come up all the time. More and more and more. But I welcome it. I like it. It's an honor. And I know that
pressure is a privilege. So, it's good.
And we want to do some great things with this Billie Jean King Cup. It is the World Cup of Women's Professional Tennis and everyone understands what
World Cup means, and that's what it is today and that's what we have. We started with 116 countries. We're down to the top 12. And we're very, very
fortunate that the matches have been unbelievable. The Czech people have been wonderful. I have never been to Prague. And the first thing we did, I
said, we have to roam Prague, cross -- you know, walk across the Charles Bridge, look at the castle, the beautiful colors, the architecture. So,
I've been a total tourist. And then, I've been going to a lot of matches.
AMANPOUR: You talk about it as the World Cup, which it is. And it is the first ever, as far as we know, global tournament to be named after a woman.
And in terms of responsibility, which you just spoke about, what does that mean to you but also, and how you think it could inspire the future
generations of either female tennis players or just female athletes?
KING: Well, I had the privilege of meeting with the different teams, many of them, almost every one of them here before today. And meeting with them
and the support teams with them and asking them questions how they receive the sport should -- you know, perceive it, how do you want it? How do you
want it five years from now, 10 years from now? What do you want? How can you be champions in life on and off the court?
And these are questions I'm asking them because they really are the future leaders and they are the one who are going to shape the future, not I. My
job is to try to encourage them, to light a fire under them, you know, fire in the belly and want to do this for the future generations, because sports
is a microcosmic society. We have a chance to make the world a better place. And I think we need to really, really concentrate on this because I
love team sports. You're playing for someone bigger than yourself, when you play for your country, which I think is very important.
And it's amazing to see these tennis players as a team versus when you're at a tournament with them. Completely, completely different atmosphere. And
to see the comradery and how -- and they were telling me, they're so happy when they're on a team because they don't have to worry about beating them,
you know, in a tournament or anything and they are having so much fun off the court. So, it's interesting.
We also had a Junior Davis Cup, which is the Boy's World Cup and Junior Billie Jean Cup in Turkey earlier this year. I was fortunate to do a
virtual with them and ask them questions. And we want to create a culture of champions, totally. We want champions in life. We want them on and off
the court. And that's going to take some doing though because we have to figure that out. What does that mean?
AMANPOUR: Right. So, to cast your mind back. We said that you had won it multiple time yourself when it was the Fed Cup. Plus, as a team captain, as
a team leader, you won it for the United States. And we have all these pictures of you from various players from Monica Seles to the -- Lindsay
Davenport and the William Sisters, they all individually went on to become world number ones.
So, talk about you winning it back in 1963 for the first time and all these others who you have led to great things in their careers.
KING: Well, the first time we had -- it was called Federation Cup, as you said, in 1963. It was at the Queens Club in London. They invited six
countries -- I'm sorry, 16 countries to see how it would go. It rained all the time. We had to go indoors. But I kept saying to the U.S. team, which
we had Darlene Hard, who was our best player. I was the second best. And also, Carole Caldwell. And I kept saying to them before we started that, we
have to be the first because it's a beautiful trophy, a beautiful cup. And I said, we want of to have our name, USA, first on that.
And so, if we look at this, 10 years from now, 40 years from now, 100 years from now, we will be the first on this, and they are looking at me like,
oh, please be quiet. And I kept telling them, we have to do it. And we got to the last match against Australia. Darlene Hard and I played against
Margaret Smith, who we know as Margaret Smith Court, Lesley Turner who become Lesley Bowrey. They were number one and two in the world.
And so, it was so important. And we were down four match points. And we found a way to win and it was one of the most exciting moments of my life
in my entire career. And every time I look at the cup though, I see USA and it makes me really happy. My job now is the Billie Jean King Cup, my job is
to be -- for everyone, obviously, and be neutral and just think about the world and it's fantastic. Because I -- as a child, I always wanted to make
a difference globally, not just in my own country.
AMANPOUR: Yes. We need to wrap. That was a good wrap and a good play-by- play. Billie Jean King, thank you so much.
And that's it for now. Good-bye from London.