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Fareed Zakaria GPS
Biden Builds Coalition To Counter China; Biden And Xi Jinping To Meet Face-To-Face At The G20 Summit; World Reactions To America's Election Results; Ukrainians Liberate Key City Of Kherson; Russian Forces Retreat From Key Ukrainian City; Netanyahu's Extremist Far- Right Allies; The Future Of U.S.-Israel Relations; Biden: U.S. Will Deliver On 2030 Emissions Targets; Poorer Nations Demand Compensation For Climate Impacts; China Faces Calls To Cut Carbon Emissions. Aired 10-11:00a ET
Aired November 13, 2022 - 10:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
BIANNA GOLODRYGA, CNN ANCHOR: This is GPS, the GLOBAL PUBLIC SQUARE. Welcome to all of you in the United States and around the world. I'm Bianna Golodryga in for Fareed Zakaria this week, and I'm coming to you live from New York.
GOLODRYGA (voice-over): Today on the program, after a stronger than expected showing from his party on election day, President Biden took off Thursday for almost a week overseas at four different international summits.
Tomorrow, Biden has the biggest international meeting of his presidency. With Chinese leader Xi Jinping. I'll talk about it all with today's panel.
Also, the latest on the war in Ukraine. The focus on Kherson, a crucial city in the south, and the first major urban area that Russia captured after its invasion. Now Ukraine has taken it back. Is this a turning point for the larger conflict? I'll ask an expert.
And should wealthy nations compensate developing ones for damage from climate change? It was a big and controversial topic of discussion at COP27 this week.
JOHN KERRY, U.S. SPECIAL PRESIDENTIAL ENVOY FOR CLIMATE: It takes money to do that.
GOLODRYGA: We'll explore.
GOLODRYGA: This is GPS, the GLOBAL PUBLIC SQUARE. Welcome to all of you in the United States and around the world. I'm Bianna Golodryga in for Fareed Zakaria this week. And I'm coming to you from New York.
Well, President Biden just landed 75 minutes ago in Bali, where this year's G20 Leader Summit is being held. He arrived from Cambodia where, on Saturday, he attended another summit for ASEAN, the Association for Southeast Asian Nations. Biden had a meeting with the Japanese prime minister and the South Korean president before getting on Air Force One.
CNN's Ivan Watson joins me now from Bali.
So, Ivan, one of president's goals at the ASEAN summit was to reassure nations in that region that the U.S. supports their economic and political stability in the face of an increasingly emboldened China. Did he succeed with that?
IVAN WATSON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, that was a message he was bringing to this meeting, saying that the U.S. is engaged in the region. For example, calling ASEAN, that 10-member association of Southeast Asian nations, the heart of his Indo Pacific strategy, and stressing how engaged the U.S. is going to be in the region.
It didn't help perhaps that he mistakenly referred to the host country Cambodia as Colombia at least twice, but despite those gaffes, he was able to bring an upgrade in relations to the table, the U.S. and ASEAN have formally announced the start of a strategic -- comprehensive strategic partnership. He says he's going to try to bring $850 million worth of assistance to Southeast Asian nations.
And he got these kind of statements made, for instance, alongside the leaders of Korea and Japan, a commitment to the region to maintaining a rules based order in the Indo Pacific. And what that's doing is basically they're saying they want to maintain the status quo. They want to maintain stability. It's a challenge to things like China claiming virtually all of the South China Sea for itself.
This is the U.S. basically standing up for smaller countries like the Philippines and Vietnam, which also claim part of the South China Sea. And this is a call for peace when it comes to, for example, North Korea and its nuclear weapons program and the many missiles, the dozens of them that have been launching in recent months. But countries in the region are also concerned about the escalating tensions between Beijing and Washington.
So what Biden was able to do was to say, hey, I'm meeting with you guys, I'm listening to you, and then I'm going to Bali and I'm going to meet for the first time as U.S. president face to face with the Chinese leader Xi Jinping to show that I'm ready to try to work -- to try to stem and stop these relations from getting worse, from potentially spiraling into a possible conflict.
And that was welcomed, for instance, by the prime minister of Singapore, who says good, we need to make sure that these relations don't deteriorate further. Some of these countries want the U.S. engaged, but they do not want to be forced into a position to have to choose between Beijing or Washington -- Bianna.
GOLODRYGA: Yes. The symbolism of this visit, as well as its substance, is notable. Thanks, Ivan Watson. We appreciate your time.
Well, now to President Biden's next set of meetings at the G20. That's the group of 20 of the world's largest economies. Many of America's closest friends and allies will be there. But so will Russia and China. Vladimir Putin chose not to attend this year after much controversy about whether to disinvite him. Russia will still be represented but by its foreign minister. Chinese president Xi Jinping will be there, and Biden will meet him tomorrow.
So what can we expect? Joining me now are Ian Bremmer and Anne Applebaum. Ian is the president of Eurasia Group, a global political risk consultancy, and Anne Applebaum, a Pulitzer Prize-winning historian and a staff writer for "The Atlantic."
Welcome both of you. So, Ian, let's begin with you. All eyes will be on this important meeting between President Biden and President Xi. Their first in-person meeting since President Biden has been in office, though we should note that they do know each other and their relationship goes back many years.
Over the weekend, President Biden reiterated his goals for the meeting, and the bar is pretty low here. But he said his intentions are to lay out each other's red lines, as well as make clear that the U.S. is looking for competition but not conflict. Will he get more clarity out of that?
IAN BREMMER, PRESIDENT, EURASIA GROUP: I think he will. The two leaders do respect each other, even if there's not a lot of trust in the relationship right now. And the mood music in the last couple of weeks in the run-up to the meeting has been very different than what we saw after Pelosi's trip to Taiwan. A fair amount of high level bilateral meetings, including John Kerry and his counterpart at the COP27 in Sharm-el-Sheikh, as well as an exchange of surprisingly upbeat and warm letters between Biden and Xi Jinping at this National Committee for U.S.-China relations.
Look, the U.S. is engaged in a policy of at least limited containment on the semiconductor issue. And that is new. Definitely causes more confrontation, but I think that the Biden-Xi Jinping meeting is going to surprise on the upside and create a little more stabilization in a relationship that frankly has been deteriorating quite a bit over the last months.
GOLODRYGA: You're talking about the export controls that the U.S. has put in place recently over China and some of its technology there.
BREMMER: This past month.
GOLODRYGA: Yes, Anne, some are referring to this meeting as the first super power meeting of the Cold War version 2.0. What really is at stake here?
ANNE APPLEBAUM, STAFF WRITER, THE ATLANTIC: What's at stake is whether the world that was created by the United States and its allies after the Second World War, a world in which there were treaties, in which large countries more or less didn't invade or occupy their neighbors, in which there was forms of international law that people obeyed, whether that continues.
Both for America and for China, there have been advantages out of that system, and much more recently Russia has tried to disrupt it. And there was some questions as to what was the Chinese position? Were the Chinese content with playing by the rules as they existed up until now, or did they want to change them? And I think that's the conversation, that's the argument that you'll see played out at this meeting and the ones that follow over the next few weeks and months.
GOLODRYGA: Yes, also on the agenda, Ian, is North Korea, and that rogue nation has fired more missiles this year than in any year past. Do you think there's any sort of consensus that Biden and Xi can make and come to in this meeting in hopes of reining Kim Jong-un in?
BREMMER: Not really, although I do think that there is some alignment. The Chinese don't want the North Koreans rocking the boat with all of these missile tests in the same way that the Chinese would much rather that the Russians, you know, find a way to stop the war in Ukraine. That's very interesting, right? The fact that, unlike Russia, where there is a strong effort to undermine the international status quo, the Chinese really want to see more stability right now, especially given how poorly their economy is performing, given the difficulties of upholding the zero COVID issue.
And so, again, I think that despite the fact there are all sorts of areas of confrontation between the U.S. and China, and rightly so. I mean, there are plenty of problems that the Americans have on national security that Chinese are the principal adversary, but actually the timing of this meeting is one where both presidents do want to actually use common interests to calm some of the big global challenges that exist right now. And I think you'll see some of that in North Korea. I think you'll see more of it on Russia frankly.
GOLODRYGA: Yes. And to pick up on that, you know, Anne, you mentioned this earlier, but there have been some concern early in this war, in Russia's invasion in Ukraine, that China would perhaps be supplying Russia with military aid and ammunition. We have not seen that come to fruition as of yet but we are seeing the North Koreans and the Iranians step in, in their place and sell them weapons.
Anne, do you think there's any consensus that can come out of this G20 summit to help make that effort a bit more difficult on the part of the Iranians and North Korea?
APPLEBAUM: So the Chinese attitude towards the war in Ukraine has been ambivalent. They clearly supported the invasion to start with. The Russians met with them early in the year, and there seemed to be a kind of consensus. They put out a joint statement that looked like the Chinese were going to support the war effort. I think that was when the Russians were telling them it was going to last three days, it would be over quickly, and it wouldn't matter.
Clearly, as it's gone on, they've been more careful in what they say, they've changed some of their rhetoric, although they do still use -- they propagate the Russian propaganda lines in their own media and in the media they control quite a lot of media all around the world. And they pushed the idea that the real source of this conflict is NATO and so on.
My guess is that it's not in their interest for the war to spread or continue. And of course, they have influence certainly over North Korea and they could help restrain this war if they wanted to. I assume that's going to be one of the main topics of discussion at this summit, is whether the Chinese will agree to put pressure on the Russians to restrict their trade, to persuade them to stop fighting because of the instability that this war is creating in Europe and around the world.
GOLODRYGA: Yes. Ian, on the economic front, it does appear that the U.S. is making a significant attempt to decouple itself from China, which would have been shocking to hear that headline just 15 years ago, yet here we are. That having been said, other countries, particularly Germany, is not quite there. Their chancellor was just in China, that is their largest trading partner, and though there's more pressure on Germany to diversify its investments, they doubled down on some of their deals just during this visit alone.
Can the U.S. successfully decouple from China if Germany, Europe's largest economy, is not on board?
BREMMER: No, unlike the Russia policy where all of America's allies are on board, there's a really strong level of coordination on the U.S. leadership, that's not true in China policy at all. The White House was trying for months before they announced these export controls on semiconductors to get American allies like the Germans, the French, but even the Japanese on board. They failed. They went ahead with the policy anyway.
Look, the U.S. is of course the most important economy, and allies will eventually more or less get on board specifically with that part of decoupling, but more broadly frankly you won't see that from the allies. And one other thing I would mention is outside of the technology space, most American corporations in the private space are more aligned with the Germans, the French and the Japanese than they are with the U.S. government. Democrat and Republican together. So that's an interesting area to watch over the coming months.
GOLODRYGA: And a challenging one at that. All right, sit tight, panel.
Next on GPS, the midterm election results surprised many in the United States. But how were they received overseas? I'll ask the panel when we come back.
GOLODRYGA: According to the Pew Research Center, America's image abroad took a major hit during the presidency of Donald Trump but it rebounded after Biden took office. So how is the world responding to the performance of Biden's Democrats on Tuesday's midterms? Anne Applebaum joins us again from her listening post in Poland and
Ian Bremmer, who talks to world leaders for a living is back with us from Chicago.
Anne, let me start with you because the morning after the midterms, which I just have to be honest, feels like a month ago, you tweeted, "House is a toss-up is not the news I thought I would wake up to here in Central Europe."
Simon Schama wrote in the "FT" this weekend that American democracy surprises us all again. Overall election deniers and isolationists did not have a very good night. What are European leaders in European capitals responding to that with?
APPLEBAUM: Look, I think it's important to understand that most foreign leaders for years and years dealt with Democrats, Republicans, liberals, conservatives, and treated them more or less the same. They understood that there were -- you know, there were some differences between them but that there were some bipartisan consensus in American foreign policy.
The Trump administration changed that, and also the Trump administration led many to fear that the United States would no longer serve as the --
GOLODRYGA: I believe we lost her shot there.
Ian, if you want to step in, what are world leaders telling you in regard to not only what must have surprised them, clearly surprised a lot of experts here in the United States, as well?
BREMMER: Well, first of all, I think I agree with where Anne was going there, which is that allies around the world can work with Democrats and Republicans very easily. They had a problem with Trump specifically. Not all of them. We know that there are countries like Hungary, for example, Israel, the Saudis and the Indians, that did well with Trump individually. But most American allies felt like he was the threat to U.S. democracy in a singular way, in a way that DeSantis would not be, that no one else on the national political stage Democrat or Republican.
So two big positive things come out of this election in terms of U.S. foreign policy and the way the Americans are perceived. First of all, the idea that almost all of the election deniers that were running for office to oversee elections, governorships, as well as secretary of state positions in key swing states, they all lost. Trump supported them all, they all lost. That's a really big deal because it means the likelihood of a constitutional crisis, the likelihood of a broken election in the United States in 2024, that would truly undermine America's position with its allies, has reduced very substantially on the back of these midterms.
The second point is that Trump himself has been significantly damaged. And if DeSantis ends up or someone else as a major Republican flag bearer, and is in election in 2024 against Biden or someone else on the Democratic side, that won't be seen as a problem. You can go back to a United States that's perceived as -- doesn't really matter that much whether it's a Dem or a Republican that runs it, you're still going to have the same challenges with American unilateralism, exceptionalism, the same opportunities from being the ally of the most powerful country in the world.
So I do think for most countries around the world, this election came as a very substantial relief. And who controls the House or Senate actually matters a lot less than the two issues I just raised.
GOLODRYGA: We have Anne back thankfully. So, Anne, you know, President Xi may be coming to this G20 summit just having that third unprecedented term announced, but as we discussed earlier there are a lot of internal headwinds that he is facing. I'm just curious, given these election results here in the United States and the fact that President Biden had the best midterm performance of any president in the past 20 years, does that give him added momentum going into this meeting with Xi tomorrow?
APPLEBAUM: So it absolutely does. It gives him momentum both because he's seen as having the support of his country but also because it puts him back at the center of the democratic world. You know, he will be seen as having the support of allies, as somebody who can garner a lot of support. You know, look, the Chinese were watching very closely U.S. and ally behavior in Ukraine as an example of what the NATO alliance can do together, what the democracies can do together.
And clearly, Biden was a very important piece of that story. He was the one who galvanized the allies. He came to the aid of the Ukrainians. They have been very clear in their messaging including in the last 24 hours about continuing the war until it ends. The Chinese are listening to that. They know that it's a message to them as well. It's a message to them about Taiwan. And they'll see Biden as somebody who's strengthened by this, and rightly so.
GOLODRYGA: Anne, quickly before you go, I wanted to ask you about your most recent "Atlantic" piece, the title is "The West is Enabling Putin's Nuclear Threats: Western Leader Should Deter Russia's Leader, Not Give in to Him."
So far we have not seen Putin follow through on his veiled and sometimes not so veiled nuclear threats. And the latest example of an embarrassment to the country and yet no real response from him in terms of any nuclear attack is this retreat from Kherson last -- or earlier this week. What is your message in this piece to U.S. administration officials specifically? I believe we lost Anne.
Ian, if you want to step in on that?
BREMMER: Sorry, Anne. Yes, no, of course. I mean, I read the piece as well, thankfully. And, look, the message is that the Russians are, you know, in an incredibly difficult position, and frankly we talk about Xi Jinping in the last segment. The Chinese leader came out publicly, and quite surprised German Chancellor Scholz during their meeting when he was willing to say that there should be no nuclear use in the Eurasian land mass.
And of course that is a message from the Chinse leader to his best friend on the global stage, Vladimir Putin. So I think there is less concern about the use of a tactical nuclear weapon in the coming weeks and months. But there's a great concern still that, you know, Putin is in -- really an untenable long-term position. His economy is going to collapse on the back of these horrible -- these very tough sanctions.
NATO is of course enlarging, and Ukraine will end up being the best equipped and best trained army on the ground in Europe, none of which works for Russia. So the real question is what happen if Russia becoming rogue over time and how that's going to be contained in area where NATO is going to have to stay very close together, very aligned for many years to come.
GOLODRYGA: Yes. A rogue maybe, but still a rouge with more nukes than any other country in the world.
All right, Anne, and Ian -- Ian, thanks for stepping in there. Thanks for reading Anne's pieces for us as well. I'm sure she'll appreciate that. Thanks for your time.
Well, next on GPS, Russian forces withdrew from a critical part of Ukraine this week. It was a great Ukrainian success. So what does it mean for the larger war at stake? I'll explore when we come back.
GOLODRYGA: On Friday, Ukraine scored a major victory when its forces liberated the city of Kherson. After eight months under Russian rule, residents greeted soldiers with flowers and hugs. Kherson was the first major Ukrainian city and only regional capital that had fall into Russia since the start of the invasion. Putin declared it Russian territory only five weeks ago. He did that illegally, we should note.
So what does Ukraine's success there mean for the larger war? My next guest is Dara Massicot, a senior policy researcher at the RAND Corporation.
Dara, thank you so much for joining us. So I know you probably like me were watching these images just in amazement yesterday to see that city liberated and to see all of the residents there coming out and thanking soldiers. But from a strategic standpoint, how significant is it that Kherson is back in Ukrainian hands?
DARA MASSICOT, SENIOR POLICY RESEARCHER, RAND CORPORATION: It is significant from a moral perspective, for the Ukrainian armed forces. The writing has been on the wall for that Russian group of forces on the west bank of the river since about July or August. It was an untenable position for them to hold. The Ukrainians had attacked multiple bridges for them to get supplies in and out. So in some ways, Russia had two terrible choices before it, stay and be encircled, captured would have been a catastrophe, or the embarrassing political decision to have to have a controlled retreat. GOLODRYGA: Talk about the importance of Kherson's location, specifically where it is located close to Crimea for both Russians and Ukrainians.
MASSICOT: Well, there's two issues at play now that Russia has evacuated from that area. It basically signals the end of their ambitions to control most of Ukraine's coast in the Black Sea. And secondly, now what Russia is preparing to do is create defensive positions, trenches on the eastern side of the river to defend itself in Crimea from HIMARS attacks or continued Ukrainian advancement. Crimea is really a concern now I would think.
GOLODRYGA: How significant is what this retreat look like and how Russia conducted it? Because if you compare it to what we saw earlier, I believe, that was in September after that surprise counteroffensive in the northeast by the Ukrainians where we saw the Russians retreat from Lyman, they lost a lot of their military equipment, not to mention their ammunition and their soldiers at that. What are you seeing here?
MASSICOT: I'm seeing two different things. So with that up in Kharkiv, that would be accurately described as a rout. Ukrainian forces pressed on Russian units that were understrength, not particularly highest readiness units, and when they encountered Ukrainians in combat situations they simply fled, it was a panicked retreat, they abandoned equipment, munitions. It was -- it was really quite in a panicked sort of egress situation.
I would contrast that to what's going on -- or what just recently concluded in Kharkiv. That was something that was controlled, units were falling back into preprepared positions. They were doing it slowly over time. I think it's been in process for about three or four weeks at minimum.
So it is a retreat, but you didn't see these large-scale battles. You didn't see a massive loss of Russian soldiers. It really was not a panicked withdrawal. It was hasty but not panicked.
GOLODRYGA: How big of a loss was this for Vladimir Putin as you mentioned that this retreat had been planned for a few weeks. So for those who have been closely watching, while it was good news, it was not necessarily surprising news. Vladimir Putin had been hesitant to finally green light it and yet he did. What does this mean for him?
MASSICOT: I think it was so embarrassing for him, that he couldn't put a public face on this. He had his defense minister and the commander of his forces in Ukraine General Sergey Surovikin come out and discuss the reasons why, and really be the public face to that. It tells me that he is trying to insulate himself from bad news and potentially pin this on his defense minister.
GOLODRYGA: In a mass atrocities just -- that we are uncovering throughout the country, I would imagine would be expected here. You heard President Zelenskyy say that the Russians had attacked most of their infrastructure, their water supply, their energy, their electricity. Is this something you fear we'll see more of especially as we're approaching the colder winter months?
MASSICOT: I do. And unfortunately there's part of this in Russian military strategy when you attack critical infrastructure. You really start dismantling what they call life support systems for these big cities, water, sewage, electricity, to really make life unbearable, try to create a refugee type of a situation, and really just slow the machinery of the government down. Unfortunately, I do see this trend line continuing.
GOLODRYGA: And quickly, last question, do you think that the success for Ukraine will at least buy them some time in the increased concern that we've heard from them about what the influx of materials and weaponry and funding will look like from the West?
MASSICOT: I do. It's to Ukraine's incentive to keep going as long as they can. The Russians have every incentive for this conflict line to freeze so they can improve their positions, deploy several thousands -- 300,000 mobilized forces into Ukraine. So for Ukraine, they want to keep going as long as they have the means and material to do so, I believe they will.
GOLODRYGA: Yes. We're expecting those forces to be mobilized at any time by the Russians. Thank you so much, Dara Massicot. We appreciate it.
MASSICOT: Thank you. Thank you for having me.
GOLODRYGA: Former Vice President Mike Pence joins Jake Tapper for a live CNN town hall Wednesday at 9:00 Eastern. Don't miss that.
And next on GPS, after Benjamin Netanyahu was asked today to form Israel's next government, many eyes around the world will be watching closely to see just how much power far right wing elements in his coalition are given.
We'll be back in just a moment.
GOLODRYGA: Just hours ago, the president of Israel formally invited Benjamin Netanyahu to form the country's next government. That means Bibi has 28 days to satisfy the demands of his allies with choice ministries and favored policies to keep the narrow majority of his coalition in Knesset intact. And those allies include a motley crew of far-right politicians. Depending on how these negotiations turn out Netanyahu could form the most right-wing government in Israel's history.
To talk us through what this means for Israel and the world Anshel Pfeffer joins me now. He is a Jerusalem based correspondent for both Haaretz and "The Economist," and the author of the book "Bibi: The Turbulent Life and Times of Benjamin Netanyahu." Anshel, thank you so much for coming on. I'd like to say you wrote the initial Bibi book before Netanyahu called his book Bibi. So welcome back to the program. [10:40:01]
So, explain to us what this new far-right coalition, Israel's most religious, would look like for the body politic of the country, especially given that it's coming on the heels on what was the most diverse Knesset in Israel's history.
ANSHEL PFEFFER, CORRESPONDENT, THE ECONOMIST: First of all, the coalition does not yet exist as such. Netanyahu received today the mandate from the president. But that's a mandate to now try and form a coalition. He has got four weeks to negotiate with potential partners. And then once he's agreed with those partners then he can go to the Knesset and swear in his new government.
But the -- it's a shopping list of demands that he now has to go through which his various partners are presenting him with. And as you say that could change Israel in many different ways. For a start they're talking about changing the balance between the judiciary and the parliament. And the Knesset that -- will give basically the Knesset the -- what's called an overriding clause would allow them with just a regular majority to basically cancel any Supreme Court ruling against government actions or government legislations.
So that's going to open up the way for them to pass whatever kinds of laws they want to pass, and there's talk about laws which would change the definition of what it even means to be Jewish for immigration to Israel. That's going to be a huge issue for -- Jewish communities in diaspora were not being consulted on this.
Obviously, the guidelines or the certifications of who can be an Israeli Jew will be changed, in line with both far right and radical orthodox rulings. There's going to be changes in the way -- for example, in the way that religious schools are financed. They won't have to -- they won't have to conform to any standards of curriculum.
And then there's a question of what roles will the leaders of the far- right parties in the new government, what roles will they have in the cabinet? They're angling for very senior positions. They're talking about defense minister. They're talking about public security, which controls the police, education. So all these things will have a major impact on Israel going forward.
GOLODRYGA: Yes, a significant impact at that. Correct me if I'm wrong, Anshel, I know that the turnout was very high. But I read 11 percent of Israelis voted for religious Zionism focused parties. That includes parties that support Jewish Power. In a country where 20 percent of the population is Arab, how significant of a figure is that?
PFEFFER: So, 11 percent of the religious Zionism is double what they got last time. Religious Zionism to explain is a list of candidates who represent three different far-right parties. One of them, as you said, is Jewish Power. The two other parties in that joint list of -- also quite radical. And what this means for the 21 percent of Arab/Israeli citizens is hard to say at this point. Because mainly the policies they're talking about are focused more on Jewish issues not so much on non-Jewish citizens of Israel. But what those ministers, those leaders of those parties will become ministers in the government if they indeed get control of the public security ministry that could have a lot of -- a lot of implications also for non-Jewish Israelis, on doing law enforcement, the way the police act towards citizens, the way the police will try and maintain order in places like the Temple Mount, around the al-Aqsa Mosque where there already is quite a lot of tension. All these things are going to be basically in unchartered territory, because they've never had a very far right party in charge of these affairs.
GOLODRYGA: And clearly, that would garner response and reaction if this government is formed from allies of Israel and foes alike. But when it comes to the United States, one of your colleagues at Haaretz wrote a piece called Bibi is one of the losers in the U.S. election, suggesting that Bibi had been hoping for more of that red wave that many had anticipated in the United States -- in these midterms. Do you agree with that assessment, and given the results that we've seen how much pressure could a President Joe Biden put on a newly formed government under Prime Minister Netanyahu?
PFEFFER: Well, we know that President Biden, like any president, has a limited band width. Even the most powerful man in the world or the leader of the free world can't push in all fronts both on domestic and foreign policy. And when a U.S. president has issues at home and all, doesn't have control of both Houses of Congress, it makes that president also weaker when it comes to foreign policy, especially a foreign policy which is divided at home.
And the Republican Party is much more pro-Netanyahu. The Democrats, I think, are still pro-Israel, but they're certainly not pro-Netanyahu. So for Joe Biden to have emerged from the midterms as he has, not having suffered the setbacks that were being predicted just a few days ago means that he will certainly have more -- he'll have more political capital to put pressure on Israel, which he probably wouldn't have done if he had to constantly be looking over his shoulder at the Republican Congress and Senate, who are very pro- Netanyahu.
One of the main issues here is not so much will America continue supporting Israel. Because I think it's a given that America will. But the level of cooperation between various departments of the administration and their Israeli counterparts.
If, for example, Bezalel Smotrich, one of the leaders of religious Zionism becomes defense minister, so the whole coordination between Israeli defense establishment and the Pentagon is not as easy as it was before. This is a channel which the two defense establishments have had for decades is being based on trust, is being based on the fact that the men in charge, the men, what we say, the men in charge in the Pentagon and Israeli defense ministry have been able to have very close levels of coordination and trust. And once the man on the Israeli side is a far right politician, someone who the Biden administration has already spoken out against I think that's going to be much more difficult. GOLODRYGA: Yes, it raises so many questions. He's currently under trial for corruption charges, what happens with the Palestinian issue. All of that. We will hopefully have you back on soon to discuss. Anshel Pfeffer, thank you.
PFEFFER: Thank you for having me again.
GOLODRYGA: Well next on GPS, should rich countries compensate developing nations for the impacts of climate change? It's been a major issue at this year's U.N. climate conference. We'll discuss when we come back.
GOLODRYGA: World leaders converged on Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, this week for the COP 27 climate conference. The U.N. gathering will wrap up later this week, but let's discuss what has and hasn't been accomplished so far.
Joining me is Bill Weir, CNN's chief climate correspondent. Always great to see you, Bill. So, let's talk about what the deliverables that came from President Biden when he spoke. He noted that the U.S. would meet its own emissions target by 2030, a $369 billion commitment to clean energy initiatives in the Inflation Reduction Act as well as new methane rules. How was this all received by the crowd there and by experts?
BILL WEIR, CNN CHIEF CLIMATE CORRESPONDENT: I think the sentiment is, wow, it's such a great change, given the predecessor, given the tone of the Trump administration. But I think the consensus is, America's ambitions don't go nearly far enough to meet the problem.
Just in terms of meeting his goals by 2030, he says, you know, the U.S. is on track for that. The more important goal is the idea that we pin this cut to the year that the U.S. started moving off of coal, right, 2004. So the goal is to cut it by 50 percent from that year by 2030. Thirty-five percent is about what the current policy will get us to. The Inflation Reduction Act gets us to about 45 percent. So even all in, the U.S. is falling short.
But really to be fair, the rest of the world is, as well. Glasgow, everybody made a promise, we're going to Sharm el-Sheikh with more ambitious plans and only a tiny percentage of the countries in attendance actually did that. And the world is a very different place now with Putin's war and the energy shocks that came out of that as well.
Big oil is making record profits right now and still getting so many -- trillions or billions in subsidies every year. And you're seeing countries like Costa Rica who tried to join with Denmark last year and be the first countries to lead the way beyond oil and gas. Costa Rica announced they're pulling back from that as well and thinking more about deforestation and other less challenging issues.
So, it's a heavy lift for Joe Biden. And we also had to kind of step up and reach for the check when it comes to loss and damages as well.
GOLODRYGA: Right. And on that issue, you know, there has been a somewhat controversial idea raised and floated that richer, more developed western countries that have spent years profiting off of fossil fuels and becoming wealthy off of them should somehow pay money to countries that are richer -- that are poorer, and that have suffered first hand and are seeing it on their daily lives from climate change. We're seeing some of these countries contribute $5 million, $10 million, $50 million here, but as you know that's just a drop in the bucket. When we're hearing from experts this will require trillions of dollars worth of investment. Where does the United States stand on this issue?
WEIR: Well, it's long resisted any sort of loss and damage agreements. Over a decade ago, the countries agreed this is the right thing to do. Not only are countries like the Bangladeshes of the world or Pakistan, which a third of the country was flooded, tiny carbon footprints historically. Some of those countries were exploited for the very fossil fuels that have been coming back and biting everybody, right? So that's a double jeopardy for them.
What's sort of bubbling to the surface now, John Kerry floated this things this week. And Gina McCarthy, the climate czar, basically acknowledges it comes down to Congress. If Kevin McCarthy is the new speaker of the House or a Republican, it makes it much harder to get all of these promises out the door.
So, in order to meet these obligations and step up, she's saying, you know, Kerry is working with the private sector to come up with some sort of maybe an insurance scheme.
Germany seems in on this, as well. So the rich countries of the world basically buy insurance for the poorer countries. That won't go over well in a lot of place where they see that as just profiting even more off of the folks at the bottom of the economic pyramid. But if it's the only thing that the rich countries are talking about, it's better than nothing. So, it will be interesting to see how that plays out the rest of this week.
GOLODRYGA: And will you be watching this meeting between President Joe Biden and President Xi? In the final seconds we have remaining here, Bill, on this issue specifically you have got a meeting not only of the two largest superpowers but two largest emitters of greenhouse gases.
WEIR: Exactly. You know, solar prices in the United States fell 90 percent in just 10 years. It's cheaper than any other energy form now. And a lot of that has to do with Chinese manufacturing. And now this new sort of trade war, this new stance from China, they want to maybe build their own solar panels for a change. Shift the supply chain to maybe other Asian countries, you know, he's in Cambodia, Vietnam maybe, could take some of that supply chain. But that takes time and obviously --
GOLODRYGA: And we'll see -- we'll see if it comes up. We unfortunately are out of time, Bill. But thank you so much. We appreciate it.
And thank you all for tuning in this week. Fareed will be back next week right here.