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Democracy Now! is an independent daily TV & radio news program, hosted by award-winning journalists Amy Goodman and Juan González. We provide daily global news headlines, in-depth interviews and investigative reports without any advertisements or government funding. Our programming shines a spotlight on corporate and government abuses of power and lifts up the stories of ordinary people working to make change in extraordinary times. Democracy Now! is live weekdays at 8am ET and available 24/7 through our website and podcasts.
Updated: 56 min 35 sec ago

From Arizona to Yemen: How Bombs Built by Raytheon in Tucson Killed 31 Civilians in Yemeni Village

Mon, 12/17/2018 - 08:46

In a historic vote, the U.S. Senate passed a resolution on Thursday calling for an end to U.S. military and financial support for the Saudi-led war on Yemen. This represents the first time in U.S. history the Senate has voted to withdraw military forces from an unauthorized war using the War Powers Resolution. The Saudi-led war in Yemen has created what the U.N. calls the world’s worst humanitarian crisis, with 14 million of Yemen’s 28 million people on the brink of famine. A remarkable piece in this week’s New York Times Magazine traces how bombs built by Raytheon in Tucson, Arizona, made its way into the Saudi arsenal and then were dropped on Yemeni villages. The article centers on what happened in the remote village of Arhab when U.S.-backed Saudi warplanes carried out a series of bombings on September 10, 2016. According to Human Rights Watch, at least 31 civilians were killed, three of them children; 42 people were injured. We speak to journalist Jeffrey Stern.

"To the Ramparts": Ralph Nader on How Bush & Obama Paved the Way for the Trump Presidency

Mon, 12/17/2018 - 08:29

A new book by longtime consumer advocate, corporate critic and former presidential hopeful Ralph Nader links the criminality of the Trump administration to the unchecked power of previous U.S. presidents, including Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama. In “To the Ramparts: How Bush and Obama Paved the Way for the Trump Presidency, and Why It Isn’t Too Late to Reverse Course,” Nader argues that the U.S. federal government is fundamentally corrupt, warmongering and owned by corporations—but he also issues a call for members of the public to hold their representatives and senators accountable, including by building local commerce watchdog groups across the country and utilizing “citizens summons” to force members of Congress to appear before residents of their districts.

Ralph Nader on Single Payer, Climate Devastation, Impeachment & Why Mulvaney Is a "Massive Outlaw"

Mon, 12/17/2018 - 08:11

As President Trump threatens to shut down the federal government over border wall funding, there have been some shake-ups in the White House. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke will resign as he faces at least 17 federal investigations into suspected ethics violations. A former fossil fuel industry lobbyist, David Bernhardt, will become the interim interior secretary. Meanwhile, Trump has tapped Mick Mulvaney to become acting chief of staff to replace Gen. John Kelly. Mulvaney already holds two posts in the administration: White House budget director and acting director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. And in Texas, a federal court has declared the Affordable Care Act’s individual mandate unconstitutional, setting up a likely challenge at the Supreme Court. We are joined by longtime consumer advocate and former presidential candidate Ralph Nader. He is author of the new book “To the Ramparts: How Bush and Obama Paved the Way for the Trump Presidency, and Why It Isn’t Too Late to Reverse Course.”

Bangladeshi Scientist: World Leaders Must Take Urgent Action to Prevent Climate Crisis Rise

Fri, 12/14/2018 - 08:54

At the U.N. Climate talks in Katowice, Poland, we speak with climate scientist Saleemul Huq, who is advising the bloc of least developed countries in the climate negotiations, about their demands. He is director of the International Centre for Climate Change and Development in Bangladesh.

Climate Strike: Heeding Call of Greta Thunberg, Polish Students Walk Out of Class

Fri, 12/14/2018 - 08:48

Fifteen-year-old Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg has called for a global climate strike today to protest inaction at the U.N. climate summit. Greta made international headlines after she refused to go to school in August and began a School Strike for Climate. Greta made the call for today’s strike in a video posted on Twitter.

Extinction Rebellion: UK Protesters Are Supergluing Themselves to Buildings to Fight Climate Crisis

Fri, 12/14/2018 - 08:31

As protests erupt at the U.N. climate summit in Katowice, Poland, we speak with Liam Geary Baulch, part of the new movement called Extinction Rebellion that began six months ago in the United Kingdom and has now spread to 35 countries. Members are taking extreme action to fight the climate crisis, including supergluing themselves to government buildings, shutting down London Bridge and taking to the streets to sound the alarm about the impending catastrophe of global warming. They are demanding governments commit to legally binding measures to slash consumption and reduce carbon emissions to net zero by 2025.

Hundreds of Activists Stage Sit-in Against Big Polluters on Final Day of COP24 U.N. Climate Talks

Fri, 12/14/2018 - 08:28

Hundreds of demonstrators gathered at the U.N. climate summit in Katowice, Poland, on Friday, demanding bolder action from world leaders on climate change. The action was organized by the Global Campaign to Demand Climate Justice. Demonstrators filled the staircase inside the conference center holding banners reading “Which side are you on?” and “People Not Polluters” and “System change not climate change.” As protesters marched out of U.N. climate talks, Democracy Now! spoke with Maya Menezes, Canadian climate activist and member of the Canadian Youth Delegation with the climate justice organization The Leap. She is a migrant rights organizer with No One Is Illegal.

"We Are Not Prepared to Die": Ex-Maldives President Warns of Catastrophic Climate Change

Fri, 12/14/2018 - 08:11

“We are not prepared to die.” Those are the words that Mohamed Nasheed, the former president of the low-lying island country of Maldives, delivered at the U.N. climate summit in Katowice, Poland, this week. In an impassioned plea for nations to overcome their differences, he urged world leaders to take decisive action to tackle climate change. Former Maldives President Mohamed Nasheed returned home to his island nation in November after two years in exile. Just a month later, Nasheed is now leading the Maldives delegation at the U.N. climate summit. We speak with him from the U.N. climate talks.

You Are Stealing Our Future: Greta Thunberg, 15, Condemns the World's Inaction on Climate Change

Thu, 12/13/2018 - 08:55

Fifteen-year-old Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg addressed the U.N. plenary last night in Katowice, Poland, condemning global inaction in the face of catastrophic climate change.

Fossil-Free Costa Rica: How One Country Is Pursuing Decarbonization Despite Global Inaction

Thu, 12/13/2018 - 08:43

As world leaders struggle to agree on a plan to curb global emissions at the U.N. climate talks in Katowice, Poland, we look at Costa Rica’s plan to go fossil-free beginning next year. It will be the first country in the world to decarbonize its economy. Costa Rica generates more than 90 percent of its electricity using renewable energy. Costa Rican officials have announced they want to host U.N. climate talks in 2019, since Brazil rescinded its offer to host the summit following the election of right-wing climate change denier President-elect Jair Bolsonaro. We speak with Monica Araya, a Costa Rican climate activist who works with the president of Costa Rica on sustainability issues. She is the director of Costa Rica Limpia, an NGO that promotes carbon neutrality and clean energy.

A "Conference of Polluters": How Fossil Fuel Companies Are Shaping Policy at the U.N. Climate Summit

Thu, 12/13/2018 - 08:29

Officials from nearly 200 countries are in Katowice, Poland, to negotiate how to implement the 2015 Paris Agreement. But so are representatives from many of the world’s largest fossil fuel companies, including a lobby group that represents BP, Shell and ExxonMobil. Just last week, The Intercept reported that an executive from Shell Oil told participants at a COP side event that Shell helped draft a portion of the 2015 Paris climate agreement dealing with emissions mitigation. This week, activists protested outside an event hosted by Shell. Among them was Nnimmo Bassey, a Nigerian environmental activist and the director of the Health of Mother Earth Foundation, who says the nonbinding 2015 Paris climate agreement was popular with politicians because polluters saw they “didn’t have to do anything that science requires.” He argues, “This is just the design and the desire of the fossil fuel industry.”

As U.N. Calls for Urgent Action on Climate Change, U.S. Seeks to Dilute Pact to Cut Carbon Emissions

Thu, 12/13/2018 - 08:15

U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres issued a dire warning Wednesday that nations must act now to save humanity from devastating climate change. Despite this call to action, talks here in Katowice have been hindered by the United States and the world’s other biggest polluters, who are promoting fossil fuels and focusing on reducing emissions in developing countries but not their own. Talks are supposed to conclude Friday, but negotiators have expressed little hope in meeting the deadline. “It’s really hypocritical that the United States is here, negotiating in what I would characterize as bad faith,” says Meena Raman, of the U.S. role in climate talks at COP24. “[The U.S.] is seeking to dilute further what was a very delicate treaty that was concluded.” Raman is coordinator of the climate change program at Third World Network.

U.S. & Other Big Polluters Obstruct U.N. Climate Talks, Stalling Efforts to Reduce Carbon Emissions

Wed, 12/12/2018 - 08:51

The world’s worst emitters are hindering negotiations at the U.N. climate summit in Katowice, Poland, even as countries from the Global South warn that they could face annihilation without drastic action to confront climate change. We speak with Harjeet Singh, who has been observing how the U.S. and other big polluters are hindering climate talks. He is the global lead on climate change for ActionAid. He’s been working with climate migrants in several countries, and he is based in New Delhi, India.

"Ha, Ha, Ha": At U.N. Climate Talks, Protesters Laugh Out Trump Admin Official Pushing Fossil Fuels

Wed, 12/12/2018 - 08:36

Democracy Now! was in the room when indigenous and youth leaders disrupted an event Monday hosted by Trump administration officials promoting fossil fuels and nuclear interests at the U.N. climate talks in Katowice, Poland. Wells Griffith, special assistant to the president for international energy and environment, represented the U.S. at the event. Griffith said in his remarks, “We strongly believe that no country should have to sacrifice economic prosperity or energy security in pursuit of environmental sustainability.” Moments later, nearly a hundred protesters began laughing, drowning out Griffith, calling the panel a “joke” and taking over the event to denounce fossil fuels.

Trump's Energy Adviser Runs Away When Questioned by Democracy Now! at U.N. Climate Talks

Wed, 12/12/2018 - 08:36

The Trump administration is promoting fossil fuels at the U.N. climate summit in Katowice, Poland, despite outcry from climate activists and world leaders concerned about the devastating threat of climate change. Chief among Trump’s representatives at the climate summit is Wells Griffith, special assistant to the president for international energy and environment. He is a longtime Republican operative who served as deputy chief of staff to Reince Priebus when Priebus was chair of the Republican National Committee. Amy Goodman attempted to question Wells Griffith about the Trump administration’s climate policy at the U.N. summit Tuesday. Griffith refused to answer questions and ran from our camera team for about a quarter-mile, retreating to the U.S. delegation office.

Typhoon Haiyan Survivor: Fossil Fuel Companies Killed My Family by Hastening Climate Change

Wed, 12/12/2018 - 08:12

As we broadcast from the U.N. climate summit in Katowice, Poland, world leaders and officials from nearly 200 countries are here to negotiate how to implement the 2015 Paris Agreement. But three years after Paris, they appear no closer to curbing global emissions and halting catastrophic climate change. New studies show global carbon emissions may have risen as much as 3.7 percent in 2018, marking the second annual increase in a row. As the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change reports that humanity has only a dozen years to mitigate climate change or face global catastrophe, we speak with Joanna Sustento, who has already felt the harrowing effects of climate change and has dedicated her life to climate activism as a result. Her life was turned upside down in 2013, when Typhoon Haiyan, one of the strongest cyclones in recorded history, devastated the Philippines, killing five members of her family and thousands of others.

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