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Fareed Zakaria GPS
Hamas Leader Speaks Out; Israel to Pursue Mission in Gaza; The Rise of Putinism; Interview with Radek Sikorski; Ebola Threat and Treatment
Aired August 03, 2014 - 10:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
FAREED ZAKARIA, CNN HOST: This is GPS, the Global Public Square. Welcome to all of you in the United States and around the world. I'm Fareed Zakaria.
We will begin today's show with a live look at the crisis in the Middle East. Then to the other crisis in Ukraine. None of the past rounds of sanctions have made President Putin change his behavior. What's to say this round will?
I will ask Poland's foreign minister, Radek Sikorski, one of those who pushed hard for these sanctions.
Also, the deadly Ebola virus. It has killed hundreds of people in Africa. What is stopping it from spreading to other continents?
I will talk to CNN's Sanjay Gupta and Peter Piot, the man who actually discovered Ebola.
Now for the latest on the crisis in the Middle East, let us go to CNN's Wolf Blitzer.
WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR, THE SITUATION ROOM: Thanks very much, Fareed.
It's just past 5:00 p.m. here in Jerusalem on this, the 27th day of Israel's Operation Protective Edge. Today the Palestinian Health Ministry said at least 10 people were killed when Israeli shells landed near a U.N.-run school in southern Gaza that was sheltering almost 3,000 people. No official comment yet from Israel on this attack.
Those 10 become part of the sobering statistics of this war. In Gaza more than 1750 people have been killed so says the Palestinian Health Ministry. The U.N. estimates 70 percent to 80 percent of the dead there are civilians. Israel's ambassador to the Unites Nations disputes that. He says last week that about half of the dead are actually Hamas combatants. And in Israel officials say 64 soldiers have been killed and three civilians.
Israel says at last count it has struck 4,626 targets in Gaza by attacks from air, ground and sea, and then at last count Gaza has launched 3,180 rockets, mortars or missiles into Israel. That sirens have been going off the last few minutes in Tel Aviv -- in the Tel Aviv area right now.
On Friday a temporary ceasefire led by the U.S. and the U.N. brought a glimmer of hope. But any sense of optimism was completely destroyed when three Israeli soldiers were killed in Gaza shortly after the ceasefire began.
Here on GPS today you're going to hear from the man who's standing here with me, Mark Regev. He's the chief spokesman for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. But first, we're going to hear from a man who rarely speaks out. Don't hear from him much publicly, the leader of Hamas, Khaled Meshaal. He sat down for an exclusive interview with CNN's Nic Robertson.
And Nic is joining us now live.
Nic, you had a wide-ranging interview with Khaled Meshaal. Did he leave any opening for a potential ceasefire with Israel?
NIC ROBERTSON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: He left a very big opening for at least the humanitarian truce. He said that it's definitely on the table. And he says as far as Hamas is concerned, yes, they are open for a lasting ceasefire. But he has demands. He says that -- that the demands are that the blockade around Gaza must be lifted. I asked him specifically what did he mean about that. He said he wants the borders open. He wants the international airport there working. He wants to see access to the sea, a port for Gaza. He wants them to be able to live as any other -- as any other people in the world.
Those were his terms for what he wants. I asked him if he was willing to stop the rocket firing, to stop the tunnel building. All of these, he said, are possible. The rocket firing can be stopped he said if we can get the deal that we want from Israel. I asked him if he thought that Hamas was winning, he said that their victory is their steadfastness so far even though he knows they're facing a much greater military opposition. And he said that in his belief that the people of Gaza stand behind Hamas' political leadership and their military fighters on the ground because they want change.
What is different compared to 2008, 2009 conflict, 2012 conflict along similar lines? I asked him that question. He told me as well that this was different because they're not going to settle. The Palestinian people he said are not going to settle for a deal less than this unrestricted, if you will, opening of the borders of Gaza.
But I asked him also at the very beginning is, does he, the political leader of Hamas, all that way distant in Qatar really have influence over the military men on the battlefield. This is how the interview began.
KHALED MESHAAL, HAMAS POLITICAL LEADER (Through Translator): Hamas is an institutional movement. It has a respected leadership. And all the members of Hamas, whether in the political or armed wing, are disciplined. The Israelis, the Egyptians and the U.S. administration know this. Otherwise John Kerry would not have intervened.
ROBERTSON: President Obama said it is irresponsible for Hamas to fire their rockets from civilian neighborhoods. That's what you're doing. Why do you do it when you know civilians are going to die?
MESHAAL (Through Translator): Look at the results. How many Israeli civilian rockets did our kill? Israel knows the number. Meanwhile, how many Palestinian civilians has Israel killed? Up until now it killed 1,700 people, while we killed, by Israel's own admission, 63 soldiers. We killed soldiers, combatants while they kill civilians.
ROBERTSON: But because -- because you're firing your rockets from civilian neighborhoods. That's where you're firing your rockets from. Your rockets are fired, Israel says, indiscriminately to civilian areas, Tel Aviv, Jerusalem. President Obama says you're firing your rockets from civilian neighborhoods and you know what that means, that you will have high civilian casualties.
Critics are saying that the only reason that you're doing this is so that you get the international outpouring of international sympathy because of the high civilian casualties.
MESHAAL (Through Translator): It is unfortunate that the U.S. administration and President Obama have adopted the Israeli narrative, which is a lie. Hamas sacrifices itself for its people and does not use its people as human shields to protect its soldiers.
These are lies and Hamas does not seek international sympathy through its own victims.
ROBERTSON: But what is very clear here, Wolf, in the discussions that I had before and after the cameras were rolling is that certainly this high civilian death toll Hamas believes is bringing an internationalization to the current situation that they believe should work in their favor. That the international community also wants to get a deal between Hamas and Israel that will last and endure and -- and end the high death toll at the moment.
So there still is a belief from Hamas that this is, if you will, cynically working in this favor. This high civilian death toll, although quite clearly Khaled Meshaal says we're not doing this to create a high civilian death toll.
I also asked him about the issue of weapons being stored in schools, rockets and such like being stored in schools. He said -- and this is what Khaled Meshaal said, he said that is absolutely not true. We do not do that. Look, he said 60 mosques and schools have been destroyed across Gaza. He said, do you think Hamas controls all those buildings and has weapons there?
He said he invites international monitors to come into Gaza. However unrealistic this may sound he invites international monitors to come to Gaza to see that they're not doing that -- Wolf.
BLITZER: You know, Nic, Khaled Meshaal used to be based in Damascus, Syria until that civil war really erupted. Now he's in Doha, Qatar. The Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu constantly ridicules him, saying he's living in five-star hotels in Doha, Qatar while his people are suffering in Gaza. What does he say about that? Why isn't he in Gaza?
ROBERTSON: Yes. I mean, his view of this, it's been this way for a long time. I mean, we have to remember of course Khaled Meshaal when he was in Jordan, living in Jordan, Israeli Secret Service agents tried to kill him, poison him. It took King Hussein of Jordan at the time to appeal to the Israelis to get the antidote to allow him to live. He doesn't feel safe going back to Gaza again to live.
That's why he was in Damascus. When the conflict began there, he decided it was safe. Qatar gave him a home. His logic is, is that he is safer and as a political leader is just as connected with his people on the ground as he was there. He feels safely clearly in Qatar. He feels safer there today than he does when he was living in Damascus as well.
I had met him -- I interviewed him a couple of times in Damascus over the recent years as well but he insists 2008, 2009, 2012, they went through this same scenario, a conflict in Gaza. The accusations that he, Khaled Meshaal, was not really fully -- politically representative of the feeling on the ground in Gaza. He says, look, the leadership has endured.
Strategically, Wolf, whatever gap there is, difficulties in communications, strategically he, Khaled Meshaal, and the leadership on the ground there in Gaza are headed in the same broad direction and it certainly appears that they're willing to let one horse lead at one moment, one horse lead at the other, but essentially they're pulling in the same direction. And their strategy very clearly is to show that there isn't any gap between the military, between the political leadership.
That's clearly his message and the reality we've seen over recent years, recent conflicts there, Wolf, is it does seem to endure.
BLITZER: Nic Robertson bringing us an exclusive interview with the Hamas political leader Khaled Meshaal.
Nic, thanks very much for that.
Up next on GPS we're going to get the response from the Israeli government. Mark Regev, the chief spokesman for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, is here. He listened to what Nic is reporting, he listened to Khaled Meshaal. We'll get the Israeli reaction right after this.
BLITZER: Welcome back to GPS. I'm Wolf Blitzer in Jerusalem. Fareed will be back in a few moments. We just heard from the head of Hamas, Khaled Meshaal. He says -- he
laid out some specific conditions for a ceasefire. Now let's get the Israeli point of view.
Mark Regev is the top spokesman for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. He's joining us here in Jerusalem.
So he laid out some specific conditions. Is a ceasefire from Israel's perspective potentially still on the table?
MARK REGEV, CHIEF SPOKESMAN FOR ISRAELI'S PRIME MINISTER: You know, we've had more than seven attempts to reach either a permanent or a humanitarian ceasefire and Hamas every time has closed the door, slammed the door shut and just as you saw on Friday morning once again violating a ceasefire that they committed to the Qataris and through the Qataris, to the Americans, the United Nations. And so our faith in Hamas' ability to hold their fire is at an all-time low.
BLITZER: So there's no ceasefire.
REGEV: At the moment Israel is pursuing our operation in the way that we think is best. We are redeploying forces in a way to defend ourselves. We're finishing up the operation on the tunnels. We continue to hit their rockets. But ultimately Israel will redeploy after we think we've succeeded the maximum goals in this operation.
BLITZER: When you say redeploy, you may get the ground forces, several thousand Israeli troops, and move into Gaza, bring them back to Israel? Is that what redeployment means?
REGEV: I think in essence, yes.
BLITZER: And how long will it take? I've heard anywhere from 24 to 48 hours to complete the job in destroying those tunnels. Is that accurate?
REGEV: I don't want to give a specific timeline. But I think we're talking about a short period of time when we'll finish dealing with these serious threats that the tunnels pose, these terror tunnels, and of course the rest -- other targets that are essential in Hamas' war machine and then we'll redeploy in a defensive way. And if Hamas continues to attack, as they've done today, they're shooting more than 30 rockets into Israel, we will protect ourselves. We will defend ourselves.
And I would urge Hamas, if you continue this war against Israel's civilian populations, if you continue shooting rockets into Israel, you will continue to pay a very high price.
BLITZER: Because the notion is that Israel will withdraw its ground forces fairly soon. But the airstrikes and the naval strikes potentially against various targets that Hamas has in Gaza will continue?
REGEV: I'd say more. Prime Minister Netanyahu said clearly that all options are on the table. BLITZER: What does that mean? All options --
REGEV: That means -- you talked about air forces and naval forces. I think you shouldn't rule out the possibility of future ground incursions. If need be we will do what needs to be done to protect our people from these attacks from Gaza.
BLITZER: What did you tell the government of Egypt that President al- Sisi was much closer to Israel than his predecessor Mohamed Morsi. He's invited a Palestinian delegation consisting of the Palestinian Authority, consisting of Hamas, Islamic jihad. They're now in Cairo. He would like an Israeli delegation to come to Cairo as well.
What did you tell him?
REGEV: I'm not going to go into our diplomatic contacts with various governments in the region or with the United States. I think I will say the following. Our goal is defensive. It's to end the rocket fire from Gaza into Israel and as you reported more than 3,000 rockets since this crisis began. To end the tunneling under Israel of these terrorists trying to come into our border sending death squads into Israel to kill Israeli civilians. So they're our goals. They're defensive. We tried to do that through an arrangement brokered by the United Nations, the United States.
I think the Qataris let us all down. Hamas showed that it's not a serious partner in any sort of arrangement. They showed that clearly. And so I think Israel is thinking now, in a way, how do we do this by ourselves, maximize security and minimize the threat?
BLITZER: Because one of the major points we just heard Khaled Meshaal tell Nic Robertson in this CNN exclusive interview, he said that Israel kills civilians, Hamas kills soldiers. And he points to the facts 64 Israeli soldiers have died, three civilians. 1700 Palestinians in Gaza have died. The U.N. says 70 percent or 80 percent of them are civilians. To that you respond?
REGEV: First of all, the numbers in Gaza are Hamas numbers. And I think when this is over and the dust settles you will see that the number of civilians actually killed is much, much lower. Having said that, of course, every civilian death is a tragedy and we try to avoid it. But let's be clear, Israel does not target civilians.
Now why haven't more Israelis been killed on our side of the border? It's not because Khaled Meshaal and his friends haven't been trying. We've had some 3,000 rockets fired into Israeli cities. Three thousand. Of them we've had a couple of hundred that Iron Dome has intercepted.
Do the math. Had we not intercepted successfully those rockets, how many Israelis would have been killed? So Khaled Meshaal, when he says Israeli civilians haven't been killed in massive numbers inside Israel, it's not because he didn't try. He tried indeed. He tried 3,000 times.
BLITZER: Mark Regev is the spokesman for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Thanks very much for joining us.
REGEV: My pleasure.
BLITZER: A note to our viewers. At the top of 1:00 p.m. Eastern I'll be back here on GPS live. Two special guests coming up. The U.N. special coordinator for Middle East Peace, Robert Serry. He'll join us live here in Jerusalem, as will the U.S. ambassador to Israel, Dan Shapiro. That's coming up 1:00 p.m. Eastern live. Special GPS.
When we come back Fareed is back. He's going to give us his take on some other major crises in the world especially what's going on in Ukraine. He's going to tell you also why he sees a rise of Putin wannabes all around the globe.
ZAKARIA: When the Cold War ended, Hungary occupied a special place in the story of the revolutions of 1989. It was the first country to abandon communism and embrace liberal democracy.
Today it is again becoming a trendsetter, becoming the first European country to denounce and distance itself from liberal democracy. It is embracing a new system and a set of values that are best exemplified by Vladimir Putin's Russia but are finding echoes in other countries as well.
This may be the most significant ideological challenge to liberal democracy since the end of the Cold War.
What do I mean? Well, in a major speech last weekend the Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban explained that Hungary was determined to build a new political model. In liberal democracy. This caught my eye because in 1997 I wrote an essay in "Foreign Affairs" using that phrase, "In Liberal Democracy," to describe what I saw as a dangerous trend.
Democratic governments, often popular, were using their mandates to erode individual rights, the separation of powers, and the rule of law. But even I never imagined that a national leader from Europe no less would use the term as a badge of honor.
For Prime Minister Orban the world changed fundamentally after 2008 in what calls the great Western financial collapse. Since then he argues American power has been in decline and liberal values today embody corruption, sex and violence. Western Europe has become a land of freeloaders on the backs of welfare systems.
Orban has not simply spoken but acted and his actions over the past few years demonstrate that his role model has been Russia under Putin. He has implemented and enacted in Hungary a version of what can best be described as Putinism.
To understand it, we need to go back to its founder.
When he first came to power in 2000 Vladimir Putin seemed a smart, tough, competent manager. Someone who's determined to bring stability to Russia which was in freefall at the time. Reeling from internal chaos, economic stagnation and a default in 1998. He sought to integrate Russia into the world and wanted good relations with the West asking Washington for a Russian membership in both the World Trade Organization and even in NATO.
Over time, however, Putin established order in the country and control over society. He also presided over a booming economy as oil prices quadrupled under his watch. So he began creating a repressive system of political, economic and social control to maintain his power.
As he faced opposition, particularly in the parliamentary elections of 2011, Putin recognized that he needed more than just brute force to defeat his opponents. He needed an ideology of power.
The crucial elements of Putinism are nationalism, religion, social conservatism, state capitalism and government domination of the media. They work in tandem to sustain Putin's popularity.
Orban has followed in Putin's footsteps. Eroding judicial independence, limiting individual rights, speaking in nationalist terms about ethnic Hungarians everywhere, and muzzling the free press.
If you look around the world there are others who have embraced core elements of Putinism. Turkey's Erdogan has veered away from his reformist agenda toward one that is more socially conservative, Islamist and highly nationalistic.
Many of Europe's far right leaders are openly admiring Putin and what he stands for.
The success of Putinism ultimately will depend a great deal on the success of Putin and Russia under him. If he triumphs in Ukraine, turning it into a basket case that eventually comes begging to Moscow, he will look like a winner. If, on the other hand, Ukraine succeeds outside of Russia's orbit, leaders Viktor Orban might regret having cast their lot with a globally isolated Siberian petro state.
For more go to CNN.com/fareed and read my "Washington Post" column this week.
Next on GPS, Poland's Foreign Minister Radek Sikorski.
ZAKARIA: On Tuesday the United States and the European Union announced a new round of sanctions against Russia, this time targeting that nations' energy, arms and finance sectors. President Obama who announced the new measures on the self-loan of the White House said they will have a bigger bite. The last couple of rounds of sanction have not had a visible effect in the sense that there has been no noticeable change in President Putin's behavior. Why should we think this time will be different? Joining me now is the foreign minister of Poland, Radek Sikorski. His nation shares a border with Ukraine and he was an early leader in rallying the West against Putin's actions in Crimea and Ukraine. Radek, tell me why you think this set of sanctions will pressure Putin to change behavior that so far he hasn't really changed?
RADOSLAW SIKORSKI, FOREIGN MINISTER OF POLAND: Well, we have put new names on the sanctions list, and these financial supporters and beneficiaries of President Putin's mode of government, and we've also banned the issuance of new bonds or shares by major Russian financial institutions which will make access to capital harder and the other sanctions might have some influence over the medium term.
ZAKARIA: But do you feel that there are any signs in the past that even the threat of these sanctions have had the effect presumably that you want, which is that Russia should start supplying arms and people in eastern Ukraine? My sense if anything is in the last week or two those activities have sort of stepped up and the Russians themselves appear to be firing missiles at Ukrainian government planes.
SIKORSKI: These sanctions, I think, will get President Putin's attention and will show that despite what he has apparently thought, the West as a moral community exists and can be united when we see that fundamental norms of international relations are undermined. Hitherto I think Russian authorities assumed that they could always play us off one against the other and that we're incapable of joint action. This is the first indication that we are.
ZAKARIA: Do you think it was the airliner that changed things? Because my understanding, reports from what was happening within the European Union was there was significant dissension? I mean, when people would talk about financials, about sanctions, non-British countries would argue for financial sanctions, which, of course, hurt London. Britain would argue for the kind of sanctions that would hurt France or Germany and as a result there was a standoff. Did the airliner break that log jam?
SIKORSKI: The airliner and the treatment of the bodies of the victims and the fact that they came from a number of E.U. countries definitely mobilized politicians in Europe. And crucial was the packet put together by the European commission, which spreads the pain of sanctions on our side fairly. Of course, I expect the Russian side to respond with counter sanctions and they'll probably try to divide us again.
ZAKARIA: How hard will that be for Poland? 90 percent of your energy imports come from Russia.
SIKORSKI: Well, Russia needs to sell its energy even more than we need to buy it because we can buy energy from other directions, from Norway, where I am currently, also from North Africa oil can be shipped. We are just finishing an LNG terminal. But Russia is an important trade partner. For Poland twice as important as for Germany in proportion. So there will be losses all around, but we just cannot stand idly by when Russia annexes for the first time since the Second World War a neighbor's first province and now supplying sophisticated weaponry to the separatists.
SIKORSKI: The columnist Anne Applebaum who happens to be your wife wrote a column in the Washington Post, in which she said that the West has treated Russia as a kind of proto-Western country, a country that was almost Western, just needed a little bit more integration and modernization. But that we should really think of it as in its roots a country that defines itself in its opposition to the West. Do you agree with that?
SIKORSKI: Well, my wife is a - separate subject of international laws and her views are hers. But yes, it's true. That we have bent over backwards to integrate Russia. We invite Russia to take over the Soviet Union's seat, permanent seat at the Security Council. We invited Russia into WTO. Poland supported Russia's bid to join the OECD. We were hoping that Russia was broadly on a convergence course with the West, but if as you said previously, Russia spreads mischief in what it calls the near or abroad, then inevitably we'll come into conflict which Poland would regret. You know, we would like Russia to become a successful free market democracy. Unfortunately, that doesn't seem to be the system that President Putin is constructing in Russia.
ZAKARIA: Radek, you were taped, illegally I should say, saying something to the effect of the Polish/American relationship was worthless. I wondered whether there was something specific you wanted out of Washington that would give more substance to your relationship with America.
SIKORSKI: As you say, it was an illegal racket which is under criminal investigation. But yes, back in January when Russian pressure was already on Ukraine we had ten U.S. troops in Poland. We now have 500 NATO troops in Poland. It's progress. But - but the level of our concern at Russian action - actions has increased further. So, we need reassurance that eastern flank of NATO needs firming up. And we're hoping that the NATO summit in Wales in September will take important decisions to persuade us that article five of Washington Treaty stands not only legally, but in terms of capability to enforce it in practice, which is what it's all about.
ZAKARIA: Do you want more troops?
SIKORSKI: Yes, we do, and we want pre-positioning of equipment. We want standing defense plans. We want bigger response forces. And unfortunately, the Russian actions in Ukraine don't make us feel more secure, but less secure. One of our neighbors, Russia, is conducting a hybrid war against another of our neighbors and we just can't stand idly buy.
ZAKARIA: Radek Sikorski, always an eloquent voice on the subject. Thank you very much.
Next up, the Ebola epidemic raging in West Africa. How can it be brought under control? I have two top experts, the man who discovered the disease and our own Sanjay Gupta.
ZAKARIA: Unprecedented and absolutely out of control. That is how the NGO Doctors without Borders described the West African Ebola epidemic earlier this week. And that is in an organization that thrives on scare tactics. One of the big problems a doctor from the organization told a reporter is that there is no overarching vision on how to tackle it. So, how should it be tackled? Joining me now are our CNN's own Doctor Sanjay Gupta and Dr. Peter Piot, one of the co- discoverers of Ebola and a former Under Secretary General of the U.N. Dr. Piot, let me begin by asking you as the man who discovered it. Very simply for the layperson, what is Ebola?
DR. PETER PIOT, FMR. UNDERSECRETARY GENERAL OF THE U.N.: Ebola is a virus that causes fever, but particularly causes bleeding and it has about 90 percent mortality of those who will become infected. It is only transmitted through very close contact between someone who is suffering from Ebola virus infection or who has died from it and a healthy person. So you need really very close contact for transmission. That's essential for when we talk about how to control this epidemic.
ZAKARIA: Sanjay, when you've seen it, and you've been back from Africa, what does it look like? Because what is striking about it is the speed of the death.
DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, there's still -- you know, we were in Conakry, Guinea, it's a capital city, 2 million people, big city. There are groups of people, enclaves of people who are really worried about this. And then there's other parts of the city where life just goes on and there doesn't seem to be much concern. What is interesting as you get further and further into the remote villages, from where this emanates typically, you know, smaller or more remote areas, there's obviously heightened concern. But there's still so much bad information, if you will. What Dr. Piot was just talking about, it spreads from body fluid, from a sick person, a person who is sick. Not someone who has just been exposed, but they are now sick, usually down in bed. And then it gets - their body fluids gets on somebody. It's wives taking care of husbands. It's kids taking care of mothers. It's villagers taking care of each other. And that's why you have these awful stories of entire families or villagers getting infected.
ZAKARIA: But then, Dr. Piot, why is it that medical workers are getting infected? If it isn't - you know, if you do need intense contact and you presumably medical workers know how to take precautions, why are they getting infected?
PIOT: Well, certainly, a very dangerous moment when people with Ebola are very sick, Sanjay said, and with - you know, they need intensive care. You need to do - to take make sure that their fluid balance is fine. You need to, you know, draw blood and so on. And these are all very difficult and dangerous moments. There are finger pricks, accidental needle sticks that happen and that's how you also can become infected. So it's not a surprise that the highest attack rate of the virus is among health care workers. Nurses, doctors and we've seen it over and over again in every epidemic.
ZAKARIA: Sanjay, how has this been blocked in the past? Why does this seem unprecedented? Is that something different right now? GUPTA: You know, in a morbid way, Fareed, it's because it killed so quickly. It would just burn out. I mean you imagine these remote villages, people weren't moving around as quickly and the Ebola virus, they would die and before they could start to spread, which is -- it's awful to think about, but that's what was happening. Now you have a more mobile group, you have more roads between some of these smaller villages such as in Guinea where this originated and the capital city of Conakry, there are roads. There are at least good passage ways now back and forth. And so, I think that part of it is - is certainly contributing. There's also this idea that there's a mistrust, I think, a little bit of distrust, maybe, even of health care professionals.
In part, that's fueled by the fact that there is no good antiviral. There is no good vaccine. So, when this health care workers show up, they're not offering some panacea to what is happening here? And so there's not a lot of trust and a lot of the people who are getting infected aren't hearing the right messages. And you also have several epidemics sort of starting in different points almost simultaneously now, Fareed. Usually it was one place you could target.
ZAKARIA: Sanjay, how are we going to control the spread? How does one track whether people have Ebola? What happens? You know, you think about as you say there are roads, there are also trains, there are also planes now people can get on flights from Liberia, from Sierra Leone. How do we handle this?
GUPTA: Well, you know, I think, Fareed, we are going to hear at some point, I don't know if it's during this outbreak or a future one, we are going to hear about patients with Ebola showing up in other countries in the Western Hemisphere. I think that's - I can't imagine that not happening having seen how it all works. And keep in mind between the time of exposure to the virus and the time someone gets sick it could be as long as 21 days. It can travel all over the world, obviously, during that time. I think if there's any good news in this, it's when you think about countries like the United States, Britain who are having high-level discussions on this topic, they are in a much better position to be able to control this. First of all, they could isolate the patient quite quickly, provide fluids and blood clotting factors to try and provide what is called supportive therapy and prevent these cases, these patients with the virus becoming epidemics or the source of epidemics. So, I think it's going to happen. We're going to see Ebola around the world. But I think it's not going to turn into lots of many outbreaks.
As far as stemming it there in West Africa, Fareed, this is where, you know, sort of being a doctor and a journalist comes in handy. Because as doctors you don't want to treat symptoms, you want to treat the root cause. And I think the same is here. We can talk about travel bans, and screenings at airport, those things are important, but unless it's controlled in the villages, people understanding about funerals and understanding about the way this is transmitted, this keeps going for some time otherwise.
ZAKARIA: Dr. Piot, do you believe that the situation is under control in Africa or are you worried that you're going to see - you know, this I s- this is going to spread?
PIOT: Well, this epidemic has been going on for a longer time than any of the other Ebola outbreaks in Africa. And it is affecting three countries, I think and possibilities that the next country could be Cote D'Ivoire, Ivory Coast, which is adjacent to areas in Sierra Leone where there are Ebola cases. So, I suspect that it will go on for quite a while still.
ZAKARIA: Sanjay, I have to ask you one question. When most people think of Ebola they think, of course, about organs getting liquefied. You've seen it. You've been there. Does that ever happen?
GUPTA: That's a sort of Hollywood dramatization, I believe. You know, I think it was popularized in the book "The Hot Zone" which I think taught a lot of people about Ebola, but probably with a lot of drama as well. There is a bleeding problem with people with Ebola. The virus is sneaky in a couple of ways. It turns off the immune system. So, right away it turns off the fighter cells that would come attack it. And it also disrupts the body's ability to clot. So, this is why it's called the hemorrhagic, hemorrhagic meaning bloody, fever. And so, that part of it is, is, you know, is true, but the liquefying of organs, that's - I think that's an overstatement.
ZAKARIA: Gentlemen, thank you both very much. Real pleasure to have you on.
Next on "GPS," do you want to hear something laughable? A politician in one country just told half his nation's population they weren't allowed to laugh in public. I'll explain and tell you about the big backlash when we come back.
ZAKARIA: The past month has been a busy one for the U.S. Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Asset Control or the sanctions unit, as they are sometimes known. In addition to Russian sanctions in the past two weeks the U.S. has also issued sanctions in connection with Colombian drug trafficking, North Korean arms transfers and a Chinese synthetic drug ring. It brings me to my question. Which of the following is believed to have implemented the earliest known sanctions? Iran, Greece, China, or the United States? Stay tuned and we'll tell you a correct answer.
This week's book of the week is "The Alliance" by Reid Hoffman, Ben Casnocha and Chris Yeh. We all know that companies no longer offer long term employment, let alone life time employment. And yet they pretend that they do. The authors of this terrific short book explain how employers and employees should have a more honest, productive and dynamic relationships in an age when employment is likely to be temporary, shifting and disruptive. This is good whether you manage people or are managed by them.
And now for the last look. Laughter can be the best medicine, but can it cure misogyny? Earlier this week Turkey's Deputy Prime Minister Bulent Arinc gave a speech that sparked a massive social media reaction. Women, he said, shouldn't burst out laughing in public, should know what is appropriate, and should preserve their chastity. So women he said shouldn't laugh out loud and men, he said, shouldn't be womanizers. Not really equivalent moral standards. Hundreds of women responded by posting pictures of themselves laughing in public. There were more than 160,000 tweets following the comments using the Turkish words for laughter, resist laughter and women defy.
The oppression of women in Turkey is not a laughing matter, of course. A 2009 report found that 40 percent of Turkey's female population had suffered domestic violence.
Next week the first round of the presidential election begins and a top challenger to Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan who is a favorite for the presidency tweeted about the incident, saying women in Turkey needed to laugh more, not less. But Arinc stood by his comments suggesting people focused too much on that part of his speech.
Well, if you say something absurd, condescending and demeaning to 50 percent of your population, don't be so surprised if people focus on it.
The correct answer to our "GPS Challenge" question is B. Greece. In 432 B.C. the Athenian empire levied economic sanctions upon the Greek coastal city state of Megara. Some say the sanctions known as the Megarian decree were in retaliation for trespass on sacred lands and for the murder of an Athenian messenger. The decree prohibited Megarian merchants from trading in Athenian markets and ports. The move angered the Megarians and helped trigger the Peloponnesian War. Let's hope on modern sanctions have a better ending.
Thanks for all of you being part of my program this week. I will see you next week.