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January 6 Hearings; Offshoring Refugees; Interview with Henry Winkler; Interview with Prime Minister of Montenegro Dritan Abazovic; Interview with Historian Nicole Hemmer; Interview with "Barry" Actor Henry Winkler. Aired 1-2p ET
Aired June 09, 2022 - 13:00 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.
VOLODYMYR ZELENSKYY, UKRAINIAN PRESIDENT (through translator): This is a very fierce battle, very difficult, probably one of the most difficult
throughout this war.
AMANPOUR (voice-over): As Ukraine makes it stand against Russia's invasion, Montenegro in the Balkans, a NATO member, treads a delicate balance between
Russia and the West.
I speak with the newly elected prime minister, Dritan Abazovic.
YOLANDE MAKOLO, RWANDAN GOVERNMENT SPOKESWOMAN: It's cruel and it's inhuman that people are dying in the desert trying to cross the desert, making
these dangerous journeys, drowning in the Mediterranean.
AMANPOUR: A first look inside Britain offshoring refugees to Rwanda. Correspondent Larry Madowo reports from Kigali.
RON HOWARD, ACTOR: Yes, but you never get scared.
HENRY WINKLER, ACTOR: I know. That's why I'm the Fonz.
AMANPOUR: From "Happy Days" to "Barry," Henry Winkler joins me. He's been at the heart of American comedy for almost 50 years.
NICOLE HEMMER, AUTHOR, "MESSENGERS OF THE RIGHT": Members of Congress have to connect the mob violence on January 6 to these broader attacks on the
AMANPOUR: Will public hearings provide a definitive record of the January 6 insurrection or just deepen the partisan divide? Hari Sreenivasan speaks to
media historian Nicole Hemmer.
AMANPOUR: Welcome to the program, everyone. I'm Christiane Amanpour in London.
In Eastern Ukraine, the intense fighting in Severodonetsk continues. According to local officials, Ukrainian defenders may be forced to retreat
there, with the city now mostly controlled by Russian forces.
In his nightly address, the Ukrainian president, Volodymyr Zelenskyy, has said that the fate of the whole Donbass region will be decided there.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ZELENSKYY (through translator): We defend our positions, inflict significant losses on the enemy. This is a very fierce battle, very
difficult, probably one of the most difficult throughout this war.
I'm grateful to everyone who defends this direction. In many ways, the fate of our Donbass is decided there.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: Now, Ukrainian commanders point to a catastrophic lack of artillery. And they say, unless NATO allies send more arms more quickly,
the Donbass region could fall to Russian control.
Russia's aggression in Ukraine puts pressure on some of the newer democratic countries in the region, notably Montenegro, which only gained
its independence in 2006. When Montenegro joined NATO in 2017, Russian sympathizers plotted to take down the government. Now the war on Ukraine
could exacerbate those historic tensions between pro-West and pro-Russian forces.
Thirty-six-year-old Dritan Abazovic became prime minister of Montenegro just this past April, as an ethnic Albanian and a Green Party politician, a
break from decades of past leadership. And he's joining me now from the capital, Podgorica.
Prime Minister Abazovic, welcome to the program.
DRITAN ABAZOVIC, PRIME MINISTER OF MONTENEGRO: Hello, Christiane. Best regards from Montenegro.
AMANPOUR: Thank you.
And let me ask you. It's been, I think, 40 days since you have taken the helm. I wonder whether you could ever have imagined that it would -- your
prime ministership would start in the midst of a European war on which just about everything stands.
ABAZOVIC: Unfortunately, it's like this. but life need to go on.
Montenegro try to give the contribution for the peace, for the democracy. We have very clear position in our foreign policy. We are supporting our
alliance, NATO alliance and E.U. alliance, and then strongly against this aggression of Russia Federation to the Ukraine.
Nevertheless, Montenegrin government did a lot for Ukrainian people. We have more than 10,000 refugees in our country, which is near to the 2
percent of our population. And everybody feel very comfortable without any kind of problem for now.
But my hope, that this situation will not stay like this for the for the long period and hope that the rational politics will have possibility to
finish this war. What's happened is really disaster. And it's a shame for the humanity that, in 21st century, we have this kind of aggression.
AMANPOUR: So, Prime Minister, let me ask you first to comment on what the Ukrainian commanders are saying in Eastern Ukraine.
As you know, that's where Russia has targeted its campaign right now, having failed in Kyiv. But it's making progress on its campaign there.
And they are complaining that there's not enough NATO, well, they say help, heavy artillery and the like. Are you satisfied or what can you tell us
about whether you think there is enough heavy weaponry, the kind of weaponry that's required to defend the Ukrainians right now?
ABAZOVIC: We are doing our best.
I'm talking in the name of the Montenegro. Today, I have the phone call with President Zelenskyy, and also inform him that, today, in government
session, we provide new help for the Ukrainian.
But never it's enough. Our country's pretty small. We don't have so much capacity, but what we can do is that provide the sanction against the
Russian Federation, and, of course, to support with capacity we have.
If you ask me, then some other countries doing the same drive like Montenegro and maybe have more possibility, I will also say that I am not
so satisfied. And I hope that they will use the examples of the countries who are not so big, who are small, and who don't have so much capacity, but
they are ready to do more.
So I invite everybody to help. But in the end of the day, only possibility, it's to sit on the table and to find some, let's say, in dialogue to find
some solution, solution for the peace. In the end of the day, this will be only, only, only option.
ABAZOVIC: Every kind of attacking of the using of army or the aggression, it is just making things more and more complicated.
AMANPOUR: So let me ask you, because you're right there in the middle of all of this. I mean, you're closer to the actual action than many
countries. And you have, as we said, historic pro-Russian, pro-Serb, pro- Western tensions in your country.
You can see that there seems to be an emerging, I don't know, difference amongst the allies in terms of how they think the war should end. How do
you think -- you have just said it has to be around a table. But should concessions be made to Russia? Should there be a certain military, I don't
know, victory by Ukraine?
How do you see getting to a negotiating table.
ABAZOVIC: From my point of view, situation, it's like this.
In Ukraine, it's not only fight between Russian aggression or against Russia aggression for the people of Ukraine. It's the fighting of values.
This is the battle for freedom, for the possibilities, for the people to have the possibility to choose their way of life, to make the decision for
And we in Western Balkan understand that very well, because, also, in this region, you have a of negative influence of Russia in the previous period.
And, also, two decades ago and three decades ago, we have this kind of situation with the war activities.
So our solidarity with the Ukrainian people, it's really big, because we really feel how they feel in this moment. But, like in every situation, in
history, in the end of the day, somebody needs to sit on the table and to find the solution.
We don't want to believe that this war will be war until the end of ends, because, in that sense, that will not be the winner. That will not be the
ABAZOVIC: So I think that, if it's any possibility to start the negotiation for peace, we are promoting that.
How is that possible, I am not sure, and Montenegro probably is not the address which can give the recommendation to somebody how need to develop
the politics and negotiation. But, definitely, we need the -- we need the - - both sides on the table. And we need more, more strong pressure for the Western part of the world.
Montenegro will give the contribution for that.
AMANPOUR: So you may not be there to -- as you said, Montenegro can't prescribe how this is going to end.
But you do have very important experience as a country. You have just said this is about a battle for values, for democracy, and for freedom. And we
mentioned in our introduction to you that, when your country, after getting its independence and joining NATO, around that time, pro-Russian forces
attempted a coup. They tried to stop it. That's what's happened in Ukraine as well.
Give us Montenegro's experience with having to overcome that kind of danger.
ABAZOVIC: We have the -- I -- from my point of view, we have very smart foreign policy in the previous period.
So, all this what you say, it was true. We still have the forces which are pro-Russian inside of the countries, but they are not so strong like in
previous periods. So it need to be some kind of communication with the people. It need to explain what they are -- really needs of the people.
If somebody think that you want to have the better living condition, the better living standards, and to use all things from the 19th or 18th
century to the -- some goals, I think this is not realistic.
We need to promote different kind of approach. And I think that example of Montenegro, it's very good and positive example how you can come to the
situation to get the independency, to involve in full membership of the NATO, to be very far in integration process to the E.U., in the final stage
of integration of E.U., and to keep stabilization in the society.
This is what all what -- what exactly this government tried to promote, how build the inclusion. We need the inclusion of different kinds of political
groups with different kinds of ethnical groups.
I am so proud that, in our government, there is huge inclusion. We never in history have this kind of inclusion of the different groups which have
really different views how Montenegro needs to be developed, but about something what is national interest of the country, we shall stay together
and work together to come to that goal.
So, this is, from my point of view, what it need to be model also for some -- another countries. Is that possible to use now in Ukraine after the
aggression? I am not sure, because things are changed a lot. But, definitely, this will not be the end of the politics, of the end of the
We need to be much more smart and to have much more productive policy everywhere in the Europe in the future, and to have more understanding also
for our partners from the West.
AMANPOUR: So you have laid out a really interesting promise for your country and how you would like to see it spread around your region.
The problem, of course, is that this war is now taking up, not just global oxygen, but global funds, as well as obviously killing people on a daily
basis, men, women and children in Ukraine. But you have come to office as the economy really, really hurts all over.
You, for instance, your country, has depended for a long time on a lot of Russian investment, especially on Russian tourism, Belarusian tourism,
Ukrainian tourism. Your so-called Gold Coast is very popular as a tourist destination. All of this is hurting, like so much around the rest of the
world because of this war.
How do you cope with that? How do you -- and do the policies that you're talking about and try to figure out how to mitigate this economic pain?
ABAZOVIC: It will be difficult for every country, also for Montenegro, but we for now doing well.
Yes, it's true. And I want to mention that 20 percent of our touristical market are people from the Russia Federation and Ukraine. And this year,
that is -- that will not be, definitely, because we are going deeply -- deeply on the sanction. And, of course, we have the situation with war.
But Montenegro is not giving up. So, freedom and the principles, democratic principles, don't have the price. We are not looking that only in
economical way. We are very clear in our sanction. And we -- now what we try to do is to open the new markets. We're making the promotion in the new
destination in the Europe, but also in the Middle East and in some another -- another country and try to make this compensation.
Our GDP, it's a lot of -- depend from the tourism; 25 percent of our incomes are from tourism. But now I can say that also, in these
circumstances, we have the very good, very good statistic in the pre- touristic season.
So, we are 4 percent better than our record season from to 2019. So, three years ago, before COVID, we have the best season, best season in history.
We are now 3 percent better than in -- from the -- in comparison with that period.
So, Montenegro try to make the sustainable economical politics. I am saying this not, only because I am prime minister of Montenegro, but this is
really country of opportunity.
I think that only what we need is to bring people for the first time in Montenegro. Most of them, they really like the peaceful situation, the
very, very, very, very beautiful, beautiful nature, friendly people, and feel very comfortable in our society.
And also what is very important is this security -- is the security aspect. So, in security aspect, we have -- we done a lot in the previous period and
have the situation now that everybody feels very, very, very, very safe in our country.
AMANPOUR: Right. Right.
ABAZOVIC: So, we will try to promote this also in the next month.
But, definitely, this crisis also in concept of energy, problem with the energy, also probably with the importing of the food, will be something
which can be really big challenge for this region.
AMANPOUR: For everybody, yes.
ABAZOVIC: Yesterday -- just to mention, yesterday, we have the leader meeting of the Western Balkan countries in North Macedonia.
And we discussed that we need to have one group of leaders which will deal only with these shocks in this period of the crisis.
AMANPOUR: OK. All right.
ABAZOVIC: So, this is the way how we want to be very prepared for everything what will be in the next month.
AMANPOUR: Right. It's a hard job. It's a huge challenge right now with war in your region.
And we wish you good luck, new Prime Minister of Montenegro. And you have the green credentials. You have so many challenges ahead.
Dritan Abazovic, thanks for joining us.
Now, as the war grinds on, almost five million Ukrainian refugees have flooded into Europe. And while the West is opening its borders to them,
other refugees from conflicts in Afghanistan, Syria, Northern Africa aren't so welcome.
In fact, Britain is about to start deporting asylum seekers to Rwanda. Immigration activists say not only is the scheme discriminatory; it could
help cover up Rwanda's own human rights abuses.
Correspondent Larry Madowo gets a firsthand look at how the country is preparing for the refugees' arrival.
LARRY MADOWO, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): These are the final touches at Hope Hostel in Kigali before the first migrants deported from the U.K.
(on camera): And so this is the new place waiting for the migrants.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes.
MADOWO (voice-over): This building that until recently housed the young survivors of the Rwandan genocide has a new purpose.
This newly renovated hostel can host up to 100 people, two to a room and sharing communal bathrooms.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So, this is one sample room, yes. This is the one sample room the hostel, amenities. There's towels. It's got an iron bath. It has
got to change a sheets.
MADOWO (on camera): Yes.
(voice-over): this is where the migrants will live under the watchful eye of Rwandan authorities. The hostel is functional, not luxurious.
But the Rwandan government says the migrants will be free here, not in detention, like in the U.K.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: View of Kigali.
MADOWO: Officials are also promising health care and support for at least five years, or until they're self-sufficient.
But the plan has been widely criticized by many refugee rights groups in the U.K., internationally, and here in Rwanda. The main opposition party
here says Rwanda shouldn't have to bear the U.K.'s burden.
JEAN CLAUDE NTEZIMANA, SECRETARY-GENERAL, GREEN PARTY OF RWANDA: It's their responsibility.
MADOWO (on camera): So, you think the U.K. is violating its international obligations by passing that off to Rwanda?
NTEZIMANA: Yes. And we don't see why. We are still struggling of having enough infrastructure, electricity, water, roads, schools, hospitals. We
are not the (INAUDIBLE) U.K.
We have to think twice.
MADOWO (voice-over): Rwanda and the U.K. expect this migrant scheme to disrupt the business of people smugglers, but many international bodies,
even the U.K., rank Rwanda poorly on some human rights indicators. Critics also say accepting migrants rich countries don't want is cruel and
MAKOLO: It's cruel and it's inhumane that people are dying in the desert trying to cross the desert, making these dangerous journeys, drowning in
the Mediterranean. We are interested in protecting vulnerable people, and this has been our philosophy for the last 30 years.
MADOWO: Rwanda has also welcomed refugees and asylum seekers evacuated from Libya after unsuccessfully trying to cross to Europe.
Orientation has started for the latest arrivals at the Gashora emergency transit center. They're mostly from the Horn of Africa.
(on camera): How do you compare the conditions in the four years you spent in Libya and here in Rwanda?
ZEMEN FESAHA, REFUGEE: It's so difficult to compare, because it like from hell to heaven.
MADOWO: Being in Libya to Rwanda is like from coming from hell to heaven?
FESAHA: Yes. Yes. Yes.
MADOWO (voice-over): Zemen is grateful for the peace and freedom in Rwanda, but it's still not his destination of choice. None of the people we spoke
to here wanted to stay, even though it's one of the options.
(on camera): Your final goal is still to go to Europe?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes.
MADOWO (voice-over): Rwanda has become the global market leader in migrant offshoring. After the U.K. scheme, a deal with Denmark is in the works. It
helps clean up Rwanda's image internationally, but some accuse it of trying to paint over a dark reputation.
AMANPOUR: Larry Madowo reporting from Kigali.
And now we turn to happier days, in fact, "Happy Days," the beloved American sitcom, and its breakout star Henry Winkler as the Fonz.
Now, almost 50 years later, after becoming a cultural icon, Winkler is still winning awards for his inimitable work, most recently in the pitch
dark HBO comedy "Barry."
Here's a clip.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
WINKLER: Excuse me. Little girl, I really need your help.
UNIDENTIFIED ACTRESS: Oh, my God. Are you OK?
WINKLER: I'm being chased by a man and killed my girlfriend.
UNIDENTIFIED ACTRESS: My god.
WINKLER: Yes. And now he's trying to make up for it by getting me a job on a TV show.
UNIDENTIFIED ACTRESS: Right.
WINKLER: I don't have my phone. Could you please call me an Internet taxi?
UNIDENTIFIED ACTRESS: Is that your dog?
WINKLER: Oh, no, that's just one of the 30 that mauled me.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: Winkler earned an Emmy Award for his role in "Barry" in 2018. The show is now in its third season, about to end its first season.
And the legendary Henry Winkler joins me now from Los Angeles.
Welcome to the program, Henry Winkler. It's great to have you on.
WINKLER: I thank you for inviting me, and welcome to my home.
AMANPOUR: Thank you. And it's a nice look into -- a nice window into that home.
So let me ask you then, because the Fonz, the greaser, the incredible 10- year journey that we all took with you back then, what did it mean for you internationally? What did it mean for you in your life as an actor?
WINKLER: I went from a dreamer of being a professional, of hoping that I could make my living being a professional actor to getting 55,000 letters a
week that I had delivered to my apartment in West Hollywood, because it was so scary to walk out of my house.
AMANPOUR: So, what happened afterwards, after the season, the seasons ended, after that huge, long run ended?
Did you feel that -- did you feel that you would typecast? Did you feel that it pushed you into a corner for a while?
WINKLER: It was way beyond feeling. It was the reality. Everybody said, my gosh, he is so funny. He's such a good actor, really nice guy, but he was
When I did "Scream," they wouldn't put my name on the movie or on the poster, because the Fonz would knock the horror off-balance. And then they
showed a test screening in order to get people's reaction before they actually put it out into the public. And I got applause when I walked on
the screen. They said, oh, would you do press for the movie?
AMANPOUR: Oh, wow. So, do press, but don't put your name.
And after a while, you got -- things picked up in the '20s.
AMANPOUR: You talked about "Arrested' -- you were in "Arrested Development," "Parks and Recreation," films with Adam Sandler.
Did you know when you first went into this -- I hope you can hear me. Can you still hear me? Henry Winkler, can you hear me?
AMANPOUR: OK. We're going to come back to you.
So, we're going to come back to him in a moment.
Tonight, the House select committee investigating the January 6 insurrection is holding the first of a series of televised hearings.
Nicole Hemmer is an author and historian specializing in the history of conservative media in the United States. And she joins Hari Sreenivasan to
discuss the significance of this moment and what it means for U.S. democracy.
HARI SREENIVASAN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Christiane, thanks.
Nicole Hemmer, thanks so much for joining us.
So what is at stake at these hearings?
HEMMER: I think the most important thing that has to happen is that the members of Congress have to connect the mob violence on January 6 to these
broader attacks on the democratic process, both the conversations that were had happening before the election that were spreading lies and conspiracies
about what had happened in the 2020 presidential election, but also the efforts that have been happening since at statehouses, with secretary of
state's offices, in order to make it possible to overturn future elections.
So they really need to make that connection between the scary scenes from January 6 and the ongoing threats to elections.
SREENIVASAN: As a historian, why is it important to set the record straight, to get the public the information about January 6? And do you
think the committee is going to be able to accomplish this?
HEMMER: So it is absolutely key that we have a clear historical record of what happened that day that isn't just the scenes that we saw on media,
that isn't just political spin that happened after, but that we understand who were the people who were responsible, what kind of planning went into
this, how much of it was spontaneous, how much of a connection was there between the White House members of Congress and people who were involved in
Even if that doesn't change politics in the next year or the next five years, it's important for us to know what happened, so that there is a time
when we can begin to set the record straight. We have had periods in the past in the United States, whole decades, where, say, the Civil War was
seen as not about slavery, or that the South was ill-treated by the Reconstruction period that happened after, and that it was actually
terrible that black people had the right to vote and the right to serve in government.
That was a shared belief among many, many Americans because a false narrative was put forward about what the war was about and what
Reconstruction was like. Historians can now go back and tell that fuller story. They can explain and explore what happened in those years and offer
Americans today a fuller understanding of their past.
And I realized that's a very long-view answer. But Reconstruction happened 150 years ago. Hopefully, we won't have to wait that long for there to be a
more robust and a shared understanding of what happened during the insurrection and why it mattered, why it was so important.
But we have to have that record preserved, so that we can tell that story and so that we can make sense of what the long-term attacks on democracy,
of which January 6 was only a part, how that unfolded, what it looked like, and how Americans responded.
SREENIVASAN: Perhaps since Watergate, we have all become almost used to or expect some sort of a bombshell when it comes to political scandals and
And if we don't have that, what should people still take away?
HEMMER: That's right.
And we should talk about that smoking gun idea. I mean, people's understanding of political scandal and political wrongdoing were very much
set by the Watergate hearings, and they had those secret recordings and that smoking gun tape, and that really has, for the past half-a-century,
set people's expectations for what these kinds of hearings can do.
And so the folks on the committee are going to have to be a little savvy in how they present this information, both weaving in all that we already
know, all that we already saw on January 6 with text messages that were happening behind the scenes and secret conversations between the president
and, say, the secretary of state in Georgia, and have those, if not bombshell moments, than moments that say, hey, we're pulling the curtain
back, and we're going to show you what was happening behind the scenes.
And they need to do that not because it's the most important evidence, but because it's the most impactful evidence, because that's what folks are
attuned to when they're watching.
SREENIVASAN: When they're watching leads me to this notion of the existing divided country and who has an interest in watching something like this.
And, right now, FOX News, which serves an enormous audience, has chosen not to air these hearings, and to continue on with their prime-time
programming. There seems to be a large population of Republicans who just want to move on, and that this is not going to be any new information to
HEMMER: That's right.
And that's a political argument. I mean, it's not just about wanting to move on. It's about the politics of January 6 and a real effort that's been
taking place, not just around the January 6 hearings, but over the past year-and-a-half, to say what happened on January 6 was just not that big a
deal. We shouldn't be returning to it again and again. It's not important. It's not what Americans are focused on.
And that argument is a political argument. It's about distancing the party from those events, precisely because you had a Republican president who was
at the forefront of the fight to overturn the election.
You have Republican lawmakers who are voting to overturn the election and you had Donald Trump supporters who were responsible for breaching and
attacking the capitol. And so, it was this partisan event. So, understandably, there are partisan politics in the kinds of narratives that
people are telling in the aftermath.
SREENIVASAN: In the moments, the day of, the day after, we saw very different announcements and pronouncements from the actual capital on what
was tolerable, what was not going to stand, and then, we saw a party get back in line with the president.
HEMMER: We did, and it is telling about how dramatic and how frightening January 6th actually was, and what a big deal it was, that in the midst of
the attack on the capitol, there were people, regardless of what their political affiliations were, whatever their allegiances to President Donald
Trump at the time were -- they were terrified. They were scared for their lives, and they understood that something historic and historically awful
And that gets overwritten by a set of political concerns. It gets overwritten, not only in defense of President Trump, but an understanding
that there was a significant portion of the Republican base, of the Trump base, that supported what happened on January 6th and did not want it to be
treated as the political crime that it was and the political violence it was. And you see that as soon as that evening, when you still have 147
Republican legislators voting to overturn the election. So, that immediate fear, that immediate sense of threat gets overwritten by politics pretty
SREENIVASAN: You know, what was disturbing most recently was the Department of Homeland Security issued another warning, and I want to quote a little
bit from it, "In the coming months, we expect the threat environment to become more dynamic as several high-profile events could be exploited to
justify acts of violence against a range of possible targets. These targets could include public gatherings, faith-based institutions, schools, racial
and religious minorities, government facilities and personnel, U.S. critical infrastructure, the media, and perceived ideological opponents."
I mean, you know, unfortunately, the country has become used to mass shootings and violence, and in this climate, while we have these hearings
going on, we also have a person who turned himself in outside of Justice Kavanaugh's house, who said that he wanted to kill him, and that he was
armed to do so. The ripple effects of January 6th, I think, it seems that they play into a larger direction towards violence that the country is
HEMMER: That's absolutely right. That these spectacles of mass violence, which didn't begin on January 6th. The January 6th was, in some ways, as
much inspired by what happened in Charlottesville in 2017. That we have had these spectacles of mass violence at the core of U.S. politics,
particularly in the last 40 years since the Oklahoma City bombing, but these spectacles of mass violence we get other acts of mass violence.
And they -- we get them especially when they are greeted with some level of political indifference. If there aren't any consequences for this kind of
violence, if there's a political embrace of acts of mass violence, then, it's going to happen more frequently. Of course, it is also abetted by
weapons of war that saturate U.S. society. So, there are a lot of reasons why we're seeing more and more of this, but it's not just that, right?
Because January 6th was not people carrying AR-15s. There are other ways to carry out these kinds of violent spectacles.
And again, we saw that, too, in Charlottesville, right? It didn't take long guns, although there were lots of those there. There are other ways to
commit these acts of violence. But when a society is saturated in them, it generates more of it because people see it, and they emulate it.
SREENIVASAN: You know, when you mentioned the Oklahoma City bombing, the response in the country to not just the perpetrators, but the leaders that
were there at the time, who might have shared some of these beliefs, and really, the lack of accountability, I mean, they were not all voted out. I
mean, did that set a pattern for how the Republican Party might have changed over time?
HEMMER: I believe so. I mean, there were people in Congress at the time who had very close ties to militias and to white power groups. And during the
Oklahoma City bombing, they, of course, said, you know, we denounced the bombing. It was a horrific act. At the same time, these militias have real
grievances and the U.S. government has a real culpability here. And those members of Congress didn't pay a price. They were re-elected to office.
They won their primaries. They were appointed to high-profile committees, and of course, there were hearings on militias that happened immediately
after the Oklahoma City bombing, many of which kind of soft peddled the violent rhetoric and ideology behind this militias.
And so, because there was no political price, because there was an attempt to paper over the violent ideologies at the heart of some these movements,
people learned that you don't pay a price for extremism. In fact, it can give you a bigger platform.
SREENIVASAN: One of the things that you study at length is the role of conservative media. And I wonder how -- I mean, in the last six to 10
years, at the very least, it seems like it is a part of not just how people get information, but an active part of the campaign of conservatives or
Republicans in America.
HEMMER: That's right. And that's been the case for a very long time, that conservative media has increasingly become part of the communications arm
of the Republican Party. Not just communicating what party elites wants you to know, but serving as a mediator between the party's base and politician
And it has grown ever more powerful in the past 10 to 15 years, not only in shaping conservative ideas and shaping conservative politics, but helping
to launder mainstream, the extremism, that comes from the further fringes of the party, to make something like replacement theory just part of
Republican ideology, or to take something like the events on January 6th and say, look, not only was this not a terrible attack on the country by
Trump supporters, but the people who were arrested for the events of January 6th are political prisoners.
And this was, in fact, carried out by agent's provocateur in the deep state, like those conspiracies become mainstreamed and legitimize when they
appear on something like Fox News or in sort of the more mainstream and elite parts of conservative media.
SREENIVASAN: Explain how that kind of laundering happens. I mean how does something get from a small corner of the internet and a conspiracy theory
out to millions of people on primetime television?
HEMMER: So, it happens in different ways. So, sometimes, you'll have a conspiracy theory that catches on on social media, something like Facebook
or Twitter. And of course, you have people who are creating these shows like "Tucker Carlsen Show," who are paying attention to what's trending on
social media. And so, it can kind of get in that way. But also, we have a very more -- a much more direct version of that with "The Tucker Carlson's
Show," because he had a writer like Neff who spent a lot of time on far- right sites, posting antisemitic and white nationalist content and bragging about getting that content on air.
So, he was the head writer for "The Tucker Carlson Show" and was able to get those ideas in more coded and mainstreamed ways on to Carlson's show.
So, that was another way that it filters in. You have true believers in these fringe ideas who are helping to create this media content, then you
get this cleaned up version of it on primetime television.
SREENIVASAN: You know, it's used to be that we had media played a crucial role in helping us see maybe a shared reality, that people were old enough
to watch the moon landing, it was a universal moment we could all agree was a fact. And, of course, you look at YouTube now, there are conspiracies
that say the moon landing didn't happen.
But at the time that we had a trust and a faith in the institution that they were bringing us reality at the same time as the same place. And now,
what you're describing is a way for parallel realities to coexist.
HEMMER: That's right. And that's kind of where we are. And the January 6th hearing are an excellent example of what that information gap or that
reality gap looks like, where two people are talking about the same events, and they have no shared understanding of those events
Now, you know, you talk about something like the moon landing and that shared media culture, that is certainly the case. Not everyone was able to
participate in that shared culture, not everyone was represented in it, but also, you know, it is that same media, those same television networks that
were telling people that the Vietnam War was going great.
And there is a reason people lost faith in institutions, and it wasn't just there was an outside attack on those institutions. Those institutions lost
credibility because they weren't being credible. And so, there is a responsibility across the culture, from journalists, from politicians, from
ordinary people to rebuild those institutions and rebuilt trust and faith in those institutions.
Right now, there are a lot of political reasons why that's not happening. And until those political incentives change, we are going to continue to
have this fractured and bifurcated culture.
SREENIVASAN: So, how do we prevent another January 6th from happening if we can't agree on what's happened on January 6th, and why it happened?
HEMMER: I don't think that you can. I mean, I don't want to be a pessimist on this, but even something as straightforward as security protocols at the
capitol are something that we weren't able to agree on almost immediately after January 6th happened. There were protest over metal detectors on the
floor of Congress. There were debates and fights over funding capital police, or bringing more capital police to the capital to defend it.
And so, if you can't even agree on those security concerns, I think it is very difficult to create a robust set of rules or shared ideas or any sort
of policy mechanism that would prevent another January 6th from happening. It just -- it doesn't seem to me that we are less likely to have another
January 6th a year and a half out from it based on everything that's happed in politics since.
SREENIVASAN: Nicole Hemmer, thanks so much for joining us.
HEMMER: Thanks so much for having me.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: So, we did have some technical difficulties earlier, but now, let's continue our conversation with Emmy winner Harry Winkler, whose
starring in the hit HBO series, "Barry." And we go back to L.A. now.
So, Harry Winkler, let me just ask you, because it didn't fall again. OK. There it is. Is it in your ear now?
HENRY WINKLER, ACTOR, "BARRY": It did, but here it is.
WINKLER: I'm right here. I am holding it. But I just want to say, as a citizen of this country, and then, as a professional, that here's a big
problem with all of the stories that I've heard so far, that profit has overtaken the individuals of the great populations of America. Thank you.
And back to "Barry."
AMANPOUR: Right. Back to "Barry." Let me ask you because it's almost a bit like a comedy gag that we're doing between us and your earpiece. But, look,
many, many of your acting roles have been comedic. And I just wonder whether that was intentional. Did you expect it to be that when you first
WINKLER: Well, I have always been stronger in comedy. I was also not the complete actor that I'm unbecoming now in my golden years. But, you know,
comedy is just the other side of drama. So, when you have the great words that Alec Berg and Bill Hader writer you, and then, you have the great
direction that Bill Hader and Alec Berg give you, you are able to journey to places you had not imagined.
AMANPOUR: So, which bring us, obviously, to what you are talking about, which is "Barry," which is also a comedy but with incredibly dark -- I
mean, it's a dark comedy. And we want to play a clip so that our viewers can see.
WINKLER: Yes, it is.
AMANPOUR: But just to say, we're in season three. The finale is on Sunday, as we said. So, in general, it's about a hit man who moves to L.A. for a
hit, but then he decides he wants to have a new life and he wants to actually be an actor. You play the acting teacher, Gene Cousineau, and you
are struggling with your own career. So, we're going to watch a clip of you teaching a master class. Here we go.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
WINKLER: No, no, no. Don't laugh. Keep it going, kids. Now, how do you feel?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Like a ghost.
WINKLER: Wrong. How do you feel
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Embarrassed.
WINKLER: She's right. OK. Now, do the scene.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Doctor, the generators are down. If we don't get electricity back in the park, the dinosaurs will escape.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Let's split up.
WINKLER: Stop. Do you see the difference, huh? It is all in the body. It's much more real. Now, I believe she's got the code. He's going to ride the
dinosaur. It's all going to be fine. You've got to embrace your embarrassment. I want a lollipop. I want it to be purple. Do I look like a
fool? Not my problem.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: So, we get -- we really get a good picture there. And I want to know, you know, your character is harsh, a bit like a drill sergeant but
also, carrying. What was it, at this stage in your career, that attracted you to this particular role?
WINKLER: They said Bill Hader. I've watched Bill Hader all these years on "Saturday Night Live." They said HBO, I never work for HBO. They said it's
a shortlist. I said, is Dustin Hoffman on that short list? Because if he is, I'm not going in. And they said, no. I said, oh, I have a chance. And
then, it was the writing. From the day one until the end of the third season this Sunday, the writing is impeccable.
AMANPOUR: And just tell us all -- I mean, maybe I should know this, but is there going to be another season?
WINKLER: Yes. We just got picked up for the fourth season. We start that right after my trip to Idaho, where I will fish for trout. And in August 5,
I think we start.
AMANPOUR: Do you know what, I was going to leave the fishing until the very end. But I'm going to ask you because you previously wrote a book called,
"I've Never Met an Idiot on the River," about the things you have learned while fly fishing.
AMANPOUR: What have you learned? What has it meant you? Because we're going to get to -- I mean, look, I'm going to say, you had a pretty troubled and
dark childhood. So, I want to know with the fishing has meant to you, what you have learned on the river.
WINKLER: You learn patience. You learn to appreciate beauty. You learn to appreciate the very being on this planet. You learn that it is like a
washing machine for your brain. You can be worried about so many things. When you are on that river, there is no time for anything but you and that
trout, if you are lucky enough, for it to take your fly.
AMANPOUR: I just love what you say, a washing machine for your brain. How much of a washing machine did you need, given what the public knows and
what we've all read about your childhood? You talked about your parents being mean. You described them when you talk to kids as mean and, you know,
they definitely did not appreciate you.
WINKLER: OK. So, that is the key. Certainly, they did not know about dyslexia. But the fact of the matter is, I made a decision when I was going
to become a parent with the Stacey, my beautiful wife, that I would be a different parent. And whether I understood the problem or not, at least I
wanted to be open enough to see if there was a problem.
They were looking at me, wanting me to be who they dreamt of me being as opposed to who I am standing there on the planet with them. That was my
main anger. You know, and what is really interesting is that they grounded me for most of my childhood, but the people who grounded me also gave me
why they grounded me, because learning challenges are hereditary.
AMANPOUR: We're going to talk more about that in a moment. But I want to first go back to, you know, you decided you wanted to go to the Yale Drama
School. Maybe it was your learning challenges. But the story goes that as you were about to do your audition, it clearly went out of your mind you.
You had a piece from Shakespeare to say and you didn't. Fill in the story. Because you've got the job, so to speak. You got the place anyway.
WINKLER: I did. So, that's the lesson. That it is not how perfect you are in time and space, it's how you fill the time and space. So, I -- applying
to the Yale School of Drama seemed to be out of my realm. And yet, I just took the chance. So, taking the chance.
And then, I memorized "Lawns and the Dog." And then, when I got to be there to audition, I forgot and I made up Shakespeare. I wasn't exactly in iambic
pentameter but I made up Lawns and the story of his dog. And they said yes.
AMANPOUR: Did they know that you are making it up?
WINKLER: Yes. I think that by that time they had. Yes, they were. It was very clear that I knew nothing about when I was saying.
AMANPOUR: OK. So, they took a chance on you, which must have given you then, from having such low self-esteem, to actually realizing what you
could do. I mean, it must have been really empowering. How did that formative experience, knowing that you had dyslexia, and nonetheless,
overcoming it, I guess, inform your work, inform your roles?
WINKLER: Do you know that's an interesting question because, self-esteem is the beginning and end of your journey, I think. And then, our job as
parents, as brothers, sisters, uncles, aunts is to make sure if you see a child who is having trouble remembering who they are and that is enough to
be on this earth, it is our job to keep them (INAUDIBLE).
And I also think that the struggle -- this is, of course, looking back because the struggle was not fun, but the struggle of getting through
things with dyslexia that stopped me or tried to stop me gave me the strength to just pursuing it. But I do live -- honestly, I've said this
many times -- by two words, gratitude and tenacity.
Tenacity gets you where you want to be and gratitude helps you get there without being so outraged.
AMANPOUR: And you've paid it forward. I mean, you've written books, you've -- you know, one of them became a TV series here in the U.K. The children's
series, "Hank Zipzer: The World's Greatest Underachiever," about the --
WINKLER: It is now on HBO. Yes.
AMANPOUR: Yes, yes. Good.
WINKLER: Lin Oliver. Yes. Lin Oliver and I have written 39 novels for children. And they are meant to be comedies first. And then, they are about
something I understood, a little boy who has a learning challenge. But the fact is, we wanted to make them entertainment so the child wasn't forced to
read it, but wanted to read it.
AMANPOUR: So, on that issue, you know, the current mayor of New York has said that all public-school kids there are going to be tested for dyslexia
and other learning disabilities. That must be very -- I don't know, feel very rewarding to you.
WINKLER: It absolutely is because it has taken this long. There are states in America that will not acknowledge a true learning disability because it
costs too much money to then bring in the resources. But the fact is, one out of six children on this planet have some sort of learning challenge,
and it is not their fault that they are struggling. And it is our fault if we do not help them. And that's just the truth. They decide how many prison
cells are going to be built by a third-grade testing.
AMANPOUR: Wow. Yes. And finally, tell me about what makes you happy, what makes you feel satisfied or proud, certainly in your work. We've talked
about your legacy here with -- in the social sphere. But what about with your work?
WINKLER: OK. So, that, I'm still doing my work. You know, I got the Fonz at 27. And I got Gene Cousineau at 72. Now, they just flipped the numbers.
That's pretty amazing, that I'm still here and there are men my age who are waiting by the phone or have already put the phone in their closet. But I
am so proud of my children, my son.
If the project does come together, he's going to direct me for HBO. My son. And then, my grandchildren, who have taught me how to TikTok. My
granddaughter who is 12, India (ph), said, papa, you need a TikTok. And now, I've done my newest TikTok with my six-month old granddaughter. I sang
her and I wrote and composed it "The Apple Song."
AMANPOUR: I don't suppose you could do it right now?
WINKLER: Apples are red and apples are green. And some are yellow. Now, she's in England with her mom because her mom is doing a movie. But when I
do that on Facetime, we are connected. She recognizes me and her song, and I cannot wait for the moment when she sings it with me.
AMANPOUR: Fantastic. Henry Winkler, thank you so much. The star of "Barry." Thanks a lot.
WINKLER: I am so happy to talk to you this way.
AMANPOUR: And I am too.
And finally, tonight, a frank conversation about sex with the dame of the British empire. Oscar winning actress Emma Thompson stars in the new film,
"Good Luck to You, Leo Grande." She plays a widowed religion teacher who has never had an organism. And then, hires a young male sex worker to fix
For the role, Thompson bears all. And so, I asked her about the films empowering portrayal of women and how they view sex and their bodies.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
EMMA THOMPSON, ACTRESS, "GOOD LUCK TO YOU, LEO GRANDE": You worry so much about the simplest, simplest things. I mean, our pleasure, our sexual
pleasure should not be this hard, like death. It shouldn't be this complicated. What have we done to ourselves? I mean --
AMANPOUR: Well, what have we done to ourselves?
THOMPSON: Well, we have crushed it, haven't we, with so many cultural, well, judgments. You know, we've made sex the thing that's a bit dirty, not
AMANPOUR: And that is why the film is a must-see. "Good Luck to You, Leo Grande," for both women and men of all ages. And our full pretty amazing
conversation on the show tomorrow.
That's it for now. If you ever miss our program, you can find the latest episode shortly after it airs on our podcast. On your screen now is a QR
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Thank you for watching and goodbye from London.