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tv   Matter of Fact With Soledad O Brien  KOFY  March 5, 2017 7:30pm-8:01pm PST

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>> today on "matter of fact," this is a photograph that awakened a memory. >> i think i remember the smell of the ovens. >> a four-year-old boy freed from the camp known as off schlitz is a grandfather with a mission. today, 70 years of silence is broken in his first television interview. why his daughter says this is the time for his story. >> what happens when bigotry goes unchecked. >> first, credibility issues with the attorney general. >> i have recused myself in the matters that deal with the trump campaign. >> were there inappropriate contacts with the russian government? ♪ ♪
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soledad: in the wake of positive reviews for president trump's address to congress, russia became the headline. it was revealed that attorney general jeff sessions did have contact with the russian ambassador. he had two meetings he did not disclose when he was asked directly at his hearing. >> my reply to the question of senator franken was as honest and as correct as i understood it. the trump administration?ean for david satter, an author who has been called one of the world's leading commentators on russia, also has the unique distinction of being the only u.s. journalist to be expelled from russia since the cold war. we will talk about that in a moment. first, welcome. we know that the attorney general did have two meetings with the russian ambassador, despite saying in his confirmation hearings he had none. is this potentially a huge deal, or is it a small deal? david: it depends on the contents of the conversations.
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the question that was put to him was, did he discuss the 2016 campaign. if he talked to the russian ambassador about unrelated matters, he wasn't lying. all of this needs to be clarified. there needs to be an investigation into russian interference in the 2016 election if for no other reason than to clear the air. soledad: the house has announced an investigation. that investigation will look into several things, the contacts with the russians, leaks, cyber attacks that could have influenced the election, and also u.s. response to that situation. david: let's go ahead with the investigation that has been proposed. let's make it maximally transparent. at the end of the day, we are going to find these accusations don't amount to much, but for the good of the american situation, we need to get to the bottom of what has happened.
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soledad: what is the recusal? david: not much. then someone else will deal with the matter. what i would want to see is that the investigation goes ahead, that we get at the facts, and if there is a case against the trump administration or specific operatives, let that case be made. politicizing the russian relationship is dangerous in and of itself. russia is too powerful, too clever, and to malicious to become a factor in internal american politics. we have to deal with russia as a country, which is an adversary of the u.s. as a whole. soledad: why were you kicked out of russia?
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david: i had written over the years that the role of terrorism in the creation of the putin regime, and in particular, the bombing of the apartment buildings in 1999 that brought putin to power and created the conditions for him to become dictator for life, and that is the most sensitive question. i think the russians decided that their tolerance for me was at the end. soledad: do you think russia interfered in the u.s. election? david: they unquestionably interfered. hackers connected to the russian government hacked into the accounts of the democratic national committee and john podesta who was hillary's campaign chief. soledad: and the rnc, too, it appears. david: they will hack into anything. they undoubtedly hacked into the private server hillary was
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maintaining for four years, and i am virtually certain that they have the 30,000 emails she erased, but i don't think what was involved was a deliberate plot to bring trump into the white house. anhink what was involved was effort to discredit the process as a whole. i think they were trying to compromise both candidates. they were doing it in different ways, as suited their strategy, but the real goal, the real target was not hillary, was not trump. it was the american electoral process. soledad: even sadder. nice to have you. >> coming up, freed from auschwittz as a child, the moment captured for history. >> they showed my picture, and they said, the holocaust wasn't so bad. >> find out how this grandfather of 11 took on the deniers to set the record straight.
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protests forced the eviction of a u.s. senator? plus, a young girl's letter to an iconic company could lanto s. >>
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repeating ther of past is the reason one holocaust survivor is telling his story 78 years after the nazis invaded his hometown in poland. michael borenstein was furious when he discovered holocaust deniers were trivializing the story of his survival at auschwitz, and now in the wake of overt acts of anti-semitism, he hopes lessons from the past can teach us about the future. he's written a book called "survivors club," and here's his story. >> can i have a kiss? that's great. soledad: two michael bornstein's grandkids, he is known as pop up. father of four, grandfather to 11, but to his captors,
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bornstein was only known as 8," his identity replaced by a tattoo on his arm. >> you didn't have a real name, and most prisoners do not survive very long. soledad: a time he hasn't spoken much about, even to his family, until now. >> i always kind of knew that my pop a was in the holocaust, but i never really understood what that meant. soledad: it is this famous auschwitz liberation footage bornstein happened to see that inspired him to tell his full story. he recognized himself, the right, one ofthe the few young children who survived auschwitz. it was one of the images bornstein discovered being used by holocaust and nyers. >> they said auschwitz was not bad. it was a labor camp.
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it was devastating, and i threw a book down on the desk, and i was right, one of the few young children who furious.auschwitz 2 soledad: with soledad: help from his daughter debbie, michael borenstein shared his truth in a book called "these survivors club." i think it's important for me that my children and grandchildren know what we have been through and to know that this can happen again. this would've been taken before the nazis took over. soledad: his story starts in poland in the 1930's with the germans invading the village and the family's happy life. your book starts with the story of what your mother witnessed at a graveyard. >> my mother was hiding behind a tree, and the nazis were making a jewish family dig a pit. after that, the nazis asked the family to hug, and they killed them all and got them into the pit. my mother talked about that all the time. it was very, very difficult for
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her. soledad: talk to me about indications that things were going the wrong direction that many people ignored. >> they just didn't want to believe it, and eventually, they saw what was happening. my mother was very optimistic. she always said things would get better. soledad: but things didn't get better. in 1944, bornstein and his family were rounded up, forced onto a train, and imprisoned in the auschwitz concentration camp. within days of his arrival, his brother and his father were taken away. they were never seen again. soledad: how did you survive auschwitz? there were very few children, little children, who made it through auschwitz? michael: my mother was in shehwitz for a time, and would come in and give me some of her bread and soup, and she was beaten over the head for doing that. soledad: borenstein says instead
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of keeping him in the children's bunk, his mother hid him in the women's barracks where he learned to keep quiet and still. michael: i was one of the best titers. soledad: less than a year after they arrived, the war ended. auschwitz was liberated. the camp's liberators film the bornstein's grandmother carrying him to freedom. they made their way back, looking for proof of their old life, treasures hidden and left behind. michael: all of the jewels and money were stolen, but there was one item that survived, which , a cup where cup you make blessings over the wine. we are very lucky, and we use that cap as a symbol of survival. soledad: that symbol of survival made its way to america with borenstein and his mother, refugees with little except hope. odd jobs and his mother's encouragement are earned
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borenstein a college degree from fordham and a successful career in the pharmaceutical industry, a story his family is proud to pass on to future generations. he taught >> me that no matter what challenges i might face, they can always be overcome. michael: my mother was a very positive person. she had a saying -- this too shall pass. when "matter of fact," returns, "the survivors club" authors on sharing this history. michael: even as a four-year-old, i seem to remember the smoke. >> why this story matters now. should there be safety standards for protests? find out what your state is proposing. and, rocket scientists wanted.
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soledad: it has been estimated that more than one million people were killed at auschwitz, the infamous concentration camp built by the nazis during world war ii. one survivor, michael bornstein, has never told his story until now. he was a child at auschwitz, and it's his child that helped him write his story in the book "survivors club." welcome to you both. this book was terrific. as hard as it was to read, i really enjoyed the story. was it hard for you guys to write it? debbie: it was hard to hear my dad and how he struggled to find the words and memories to happened to him. happened to him. my dad is one of the most
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positive guys you will ever meet. he was the perfect soccer dad. he's an awesome poppa to 11 grandkids. for him to sit down and dig deep and talk to me about starvation, bullying, assault, death. it's hard. soledad: you were only four years old at auschwitz. it's not like you had a long, grown-up memory of your time there. michael: that's correct. some of the things, for example, that we found -- my father was president of the judenrat in the town where i was born in zarki. that is basically a go between people, butd jewish he used his position to bribe some people to make life easier. he suggested that some of his family members and others go hiding when he saw what was happening. soledad: he saved a lot of lives. michael: he saved a lot of lives. soledad: and lost his own life.
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hiding when he saw what was happening. when you think about some of the conversations that are happening today, whether it is holocaust deniers -- i think their voices have been elevated. certainly, we know of dozens of jcc's where sometimes, i feel that people are not necessarily up in arms. sometimes, i feel that people are not necessarily up in arms. it's, it's just a tiny thing. debbie: the holocaust did not start with murder. it did not happen overnight, the
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systematic killing of 6 million people. it started with discrimination. it started with anti-somatic rhetoric, and it started with people ignoring that rhetoric. i don't think there's been a better time to tell another holocaust story and remind people what happens when bigotry goes unchecked. michael: i think people need to bring prejudice to the forefront , whether it's positions that or theinistration has prejudice. it just won't go away. it has to be paid attention to. soledad: can i ask you a question? i always imagined that places buchenwald and auschwitz were far away in a field, and they were not just around anything. i read a story the other day that auschwitz was in a residential area. michael: the town is right there next to the concentration camp. soledad: how do people who live next toown of auschwitz a concentration camp not know what was going on? michael: it's difficult. even as a four-year-old, i seem
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to remember the smell of flesh. i seem to remember the smoke, ots going, and i just don't understand how they can avoid knowing what was going on. soledad: some people want to bury their head in the sand, i think. on the flipside, what could they do? michael: that's right. soledad: i want to thank you both. the book is called "survivors club." thank you to both of you. debbie: thank you so much for having us. >> coming up next, the constitution guarantees the right to peaceful assembly. can a law limiting your access to the streets get past the courts? the movie "hidden figures" told this nasa pioneer story. find out how this medal of honor winner could become a young girl's action figure.
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soledad: protesters have forced republican senator mc rubio to look for a new office location in the tampa, florida area. refused to renew his lease, citing the disruptions caused by the weekly rallies and protesters picketing trump'spresident cabinet nominees come immigration directives, and his positions on climate change. rubio is not alone. town halls have become contentious across the country. some state legislators are trying to rewrite rules governing protests. the constitution prohibits congress from passing laws that would interview -- interfere with the rights of people's ability to peacefully assemble. at least eight state legislatures have introduced bills increasing penalties for protesters who are blocking highways. minnesota included airport access roads. george included any street,
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sidewalk, or other public passage. republican lawmakers in florida and tennessee want to remove the liability for drivers who unintentionally strike protesters blocking a road or street. a similar bill in north dakota failed last month. bill sponsors say these laws are needed to cut down on "paid or professional" protesters, a label applied to tea party activists a few years ago and democratic activists today. historically, the supreme court has upheld the rights of protesters under the first amendment. protesters under the first amendment. protesters under the first amendment. it's just a date. i can stay. i'm good. i won't be late hey mom. yeah. no kissing on the first date, alright?
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interested in stem. that is news 10-year-old charlotte benjamin is going to love. charlotte has been on a campaign of sorts since she was seven, saying girls need big adventures in their lives. she wrote this letter to the company that makes legos, asking them to make girl figures that do more. she complained that "all the girls did was sit at home, go to bed, and shop, and they had no jobs, but the boys went on adventures, worked, and saved people." charlotte got results. a "women in nasa" that will go into production. nancy grace roman, who's known as the mother of the double space telescope, and mae jemison, the first african-american woman in space. is part of the
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is part of theen hit movie "hidden figures." we understand charlotte was just one voice advocating to lego. the ladies that rock outerspace submission came from a woman at m.i.t. well done, women of science, technology, engineering, and math, and happy women's history month. i am solid that o'brien. we will see you next week for "matter of fact." ♪ [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org] ♪
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>> from studio 20 at kofytv, it's the show that makes you sweat to the beat of the '80s. it's dance party. i'm your dj, dj katie, and now the man who brings the party right into your living room, it's our host, morris knight. >> what's up people? what's up? welcome to dance party right here on kofytv. good to see you dance party dave, and good to see you--oh my! oh my goodness! this guy right here, you're a good looking guy. >> we are. >> i'd like to look like this guy. the star of the show, the star of the show. you guys ready to party, huh? did you give some love to dj katie?

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