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tv   PBS News Hour Weekend  PBS  October 15, 2017 5:30pm-6:01pm PDT

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captioning sponsored by wnet >> sreenivasan: on this edition for sunday, october 15: northern california, still battling devastating wildfires. in africa, the continent's worst refugee crisis, caused by a civil war. and photographer william wegman and his photogenic dogs. next on pbs newshour weekend. additional support has been >> pbs newshour weekend is made possible by: bernard and irene schwartz. the cheryl and philip milstein family. sue and edgar wachenheim, iii. dr. p. roy vagelos and diana t. vagelos. the j.b.p. foundation. the anderson family fund. rosalind p. walter, in memory of abby m. o'neill. barbara hope zuckerberg.
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corporate funding is provided by mutual of america-- designing customized individual and group retirement products. that's why we're your retirement company. additional support has been provided by: and by the corporation for public broadcasting, and by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you. from the tisch wnet studios at lincoln center in new york, hari sreenivasan. >> sreenivasan: good evening and thanks for joining us. california fire officials said today they've turned a corner on the wildfires that devastated northern parts of the state for the past week. still, 11,000 firefighters from california and surrounding states are battling 16 large fires in areas north of san francisco. the fires have already burned 218,000 acres, an area larger than new york city. and 75,000 people remain under home evacuation orders, down from 100,000 yesterday. the fires have killed at least
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40 people, making this the state's most lethal set of wildfires since modern record keeping began. half of those fatalities are in sonoma county, part of california's wine-making region, where towns have seen hundreds of homes and businesses burned to the ground. at least a dozen sonoma and napa valley wineries have been damaged or destroyed. two of the three biggest fires, including one around the city of santa rosa, were more than 50% contained today. power in puerto rico may not be restored until right before christmas. governor ricardo rossello says it will be two more months before 95% of the island's 3.5 million american citizens have electricity. in the three weeks since hurricane maria wiped out the power grid, only 15% of residents and business have seen power restored. rossello says he hoped to see that figure double by the end of this month. two-thirds of residents now have drinkable running water, but many are still going to distribution centers to get bottled water and bags of ice.
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authorities now confirm 48 deaths as a result of the hurricane, but there is concern that number could be much higher due to poor communications throughout the island and different reporting processes. two weeks after the mass shooting at a concert in las vegas, most of the injured have left hospitals. 45 people are still being treated. 13 hospitals involved in the emergency response tell pbs newshour weekend they treated a total of 610 survivors for injuries of all kinds. it's still unknown how many survivors were wounded by gunfire. 58 people were shot and killed. yesterday's truck bombing in somalia is now the most lethal terrorist attack ever on civilians in any nation in the horn of africa. authorities say the attack in the capital of mogadishu killed more than 230 people and injured nearly 300 more. the bomb targeted a busy section of the city with shops, hotels, and government ministries. rescue workers today continued to search for survivors trapped under the rubble of destroyed buildings.
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one hospital said it was overwhelmed by the dead and wounded, many with severe burns. somali president mohamed abdullahi mohamed called the attack a "national disaster" and declared three days of mourning. his government blames the al qaeda-linked militant group al- shabab, which is based in somalia. there's been no claim of responsibility. u.s. allies are criticizing president trump's decertification of iran's compliance with the 2015 nuclear deal, but the trump foreign policy team is defending it. british prime minister theresa may and german chancellor angela merkel conferred today, and a spokesman says they remain" firmly committed" to the deal among iran, the u.s., and five other world powers. the spokesman said: "they also agreed the international community needed to continue to come together to push back against iran's destabilizing regional activity and to explore ways of addressing concerns about iran's ballistic missile program." today, secretary of state rex tillerson said the u.s. would work with its european partners to do just that and fix flaws in
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the nuclear deal. >> so, now we want to deal with the nuclear agreement's weaknesses, but we really need to deal with a much broader array of threats that iran poses to the region, our friends and allies, and therefore threats they pose to our national security. >> sreenivasan: united nations ambassador nikki haley added, the u.s does not want iran to become the next north korea. >> i think right now, you're going to see us stay in the deal, because what our hope is that we can improve the situation, and that's the goal. >> sreenivasan: in an interview taped yesterday and broadcast today, iran's foreign minister said u.s. credibility is on the line. >> nobody else will trust any u.s. administration to engage in any long-term negotiation, because the length of any commitment, the duration of any commitment from now on with any u.s. administration would be the remainder of the term of that president. >> sreenivasan: congress has 60 days to decide whether to re- impose the economic sanctions lifted under the deal. treasury secretary steven
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mnuchin said today the administration is moving toward new sanctions on iran's revolutionary guards, its elite military forces involved operations outside iran, such as in syria and yemen. asked about north korea today, secretary of state tillerson said: despite mixed messages, president trump is not seeking a war. >> he has made it clear to me to continue my diplomatic efforts. which we are. and i've told others those diplomatic efforts will continue until the first bomb drops. >> sreenivasan: today, president trump's national security adviser added: the administration is considering military options to stop north korea's leader from threatening the u.s. with nuclear weapons. >> what kim jong-un should recognize is that if he thinks the development of this nuclear capability is keeping him safer, it's actually the opposite. >> sreenivasan: the united nations says south sudan's four- year-old civil war has left half
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of the nation's population-- six million people-- in need of humanitarian aid. the conflict began when south sudan's army split between factions loyal to president salva kiir and former vice president riek machar. the two men mobilized their respective tribes, the dinka and the nuer. the war has caused what is now one of the world's worst refugee crises. with support from the u.s. holocaust memorial museum's center for the prevention of genocide, newshour weekend special correspondent simona foltyn and journalist jason patinkin traveled to uganda to meet those refugees. >> reporter: civil war is emptying huge swaths of south sudan. the violence has uprooted four million people, including two million who've fled to neighboring countries. in the last year, more than a million south sudanese have poured into northern uganda alone, crossing makeshift bridges like this one to flee fighting, hunger, and brutal attacks on civilians. >> ( translated ): they started fighting very, very severely. so that made us to escape with our properties to this side.
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>> reporter: when seme lupai's family went to one of the refugee camps, initially, he stayed behind to look after the family's most precious commodity-- their cattle. he hid for a year to escape the violence. the refugees carry whatever they can salvage-- mattresses, pots, clothes, notebooks-- remnants of once peaceful lives turned upside down. at checkpoints, ugandan soldiers search their belongings for weapons, before the refugees proceed to reception centers. after entering uganda, the refugees sign in at small waystations. for many, it's the first night spent in safety after walking for days to escape fighting. levi arike fled with his wife and four children. >> ( translated ): when the gunshots started, we laid under a tree with the whole family, because there was nowhere else to hide. we waited for the fighting to stop, and then we got up and started walking to uganda. >> reporter: uganda now shoulders most of the burden of africa's biggest refugee crisis, managing a constellation of
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camps which require food, water, healthcare, and policing. at imvepi camp, now home to more than 120,000 south sudanese, new arrivals receive vaccinations, hot meals, and basic items such as soap and plastic tarps to build a house. the government also gives each refugee family a small plot of land, about a twentieth of an acre, where they can build a tent shelter and grow crops to eat or sell. but the land often proves too rocky for farming. after completing the registration process, the new arrivals will receive their plot of land, to start a new life as refugees in uganda. while they are safe here, there are many challenges ahead, not least processing the trauma of what they experienced back home. this woman, who we'll call" agnes," agreed to tell us about her harrowing experience. she says four government soldiers from president salva kiir's dinka tribe stopped her as she was fleeing south sudan and raped her right in front of her family. >> ( translated ): when they started raping me, they told me not to raise alarm, otherwise
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they would shoot me. still when i'm sleeping, i'm dreaming of the dinka, that they are coming to rape me again. >> reporter: how often do you have those dreams? >> ( translated ): daily, every time i lie down, those dreams come. >> reporter: a recent human rights watch report on south sudan found "...a clear pattern of government forces unlawfully targeting civilians for killings, rapes, torture... and destruction of property.." the victims are from ethnic groups suspected to support the rebels. >> ( translated ): they are doing it, because they know very well that those soldiers are our brothers. so they do it to punish them. >> reporter: although the rebels, known as the sudan people's liberation army in opposition, purport to protect local communities, there are also reports of their fighters assaulting civilians near the ugandan border. josephine yanya told us she didn't feel safe in the presence of either side's soldiers. her family and neighbors fled their village after government soldiers killed her uncle. they hid in the mountains only to find themselves under attack again, this time by opposition fighters from the nuer tribe
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loyal to former vice president riek machar. yanya says ethnic nuer soldiers raped a member of her group and stole her father's' cattle. >> ( translated ): before we were thinking that the rebels would protect us, but if they are lacking food, they just come and take things by force. >> reporter: with nowhere left to hide, yanya fled to uganda with her son. but instead of finding a place to rebuild their lives, they are in limbo. and aid groups don't have enough food to distribute. >> ( translated ): we are getting small food rations. i know it won't be enough even for one month. >> reporter: according to the united nations, the international community has given less than a-third of the $1.4 billion needed for the refugee response in south sudan's neighboring countries. these refugees foresee more hardship and have no idea when they might return home. >> ( translated ): i'm always praying for peace in south sudan, and until then, i'll just stay here.
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>> sreenivasan: read more about simona foltyn's experience reporting from south sudan. visit >> sreenivasan: the desire of the kurds along iraq's northern border to govern themselves is receiving more resistance from iraq's central government. iraqi army forces are demanding kurdish troops withdraw from oil fields and military bases around kirkuk, a city in the kurdistan region that voted for independence last month. kirkuk also has 10% of iraq's known oil reserves." washington post" reporter loveday morris is in baghdad covering the standoff, and she joins me now via skype. first loveday the significance of this, why is it so important? >> well, there's been a long time complex between baghdad and kurdi stab over this-- kurdistan over this disputed territories, most significant of which is kirkuk because of the oil reserves but the referendum last month has really sharpened these disputes because you have
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kurdistan voting for independence, that means that baghdad is left obviously not wanting to cede these areas because it feels like it has to restake its territorial claims to these areas so that is why we're seeing a lot of tension right now. >> sreenivasan: and just to give people a little bit of a brief time line, iraqi forces controlled this area for awhile and then, what, in june or so isis took over the area. and then now it's kind of back in kurdish hands? >> right, so in june 2014 iraq lost control of a lot of these areas that they did have-- they had huge collapse in the face of an isis offensive. over 100,000 soldiers fled and after that kurdish forces moved in to some of these areas. some of them they retook from
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isis, others they just moved into the vacuum. and so iraqi forces haven't been in these areas since june 2014. and that's their main demand, that they return the areas, the positions they were at for the isis advance. >> what is the like leehood that this standoff right now turns violent into some sort of a civil war? >> i think at this point both sides don't want violence. a dd badi the prime minister is really trying to refute the situation saying there will be no military attack but at the same time there are-- i think they are trying to in a way intimidate the kurds to withdraw from some areas. but they don't want to see a fight per se. but that is not to say that, in this really tense situation there can be a small-- bark and
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things can turn violent easily when things are this tense. >> sreenivasan: loveday morist live via skype tonight. thank you so much. >> thank you. >> sreenivasan: for more than 40 years, artist william wegman has been photographing his beloved dogs. they've appeared in countless publications, posters, and calendars, and this month, wegman's latest book was released, containing more than 300 images spanning his career. newshour weekend's megan thompson has this profile. >> reporter: if you don't immediately recognize this man walking his dogs down a new york city street you might recognize the dogs. this is william wegman, the painter, photographer and filmmaker famous for the photos he takes of his beloved pets. the photographs are funny, beautiful, mysterious and always original. they've graced the pages of countless books and magazines
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and museum walls for more than 30 years. wegman says even though he has always been a dog person he didn't set out to photograph them. >> my first wife wanted a dog, and i didn't. i was too busy as an artist, being an artist. >> reporter: wegman studied painting in college and grad school in the 1960's, and he still paints today, creating intricate paintings that incorporate found postcards. he didn't take up the photography he's become more well-known for until after grad school. >> i remember flipping a coin, because i wasn't really sure. three out of five, tails we'll get a dog. and it came up five out of five, it was tails. so, it was destined. >> reporter: wegman named his dog after the artist man ray. he was a large hunting breed called a weimaraner. >> and so i took him to my studio, which was natural. and i took his picture, which you would do with your newborn, or whatever. and it was kind of magical how he became.
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he was kind of transformed by the act of photographing him. i was a little weary of photographing the dog because it's sort of a gimmick. and it could be construed as being lazy or whatever. so, but i kept he kept giving me more ideas. >> reporter: and the ideas just kept coming. and so did the dogs. after man ray, there was fay ray, and then her offspring. wegman has worked with 14 weimaraners in all. his work became wildly popular. the photographs sell for thousands of dollars and are exhibited all over the world. he's published almost 40 books, including more than 20 children's books and a new york times best-seller on puppies. his most recent book was published earlier this month:" william wegman, being human", the largest collection of his work ever published. there are videos and short films, too, starting with quirky conceptual art videos from the '70's, like this one, where wegman's teaching man ray to spell.
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>> and you spelled o-u-t right. but when it came to beach, you spelled it b-e-e-c-h. >> reporter: wegman's dogs have appeared on "saturday night live." >> okay, who wants to pitch? >> reporter: and they've appeared on "sesame street." the world of high fashion has also embraced the dogs-- this past summer they appeared in french vogue, modeling clothing by designers like gucci. wegman lives and works in the chelsea neighborhood of manhattan with his dogs flo and topper. >> well we're downstairs in the basement where i keep the props. >> reporter: his basement is filled with decades worth of costumes, trinkets and props that he's used to create his elaborate scenes. i believe this is the jacket that batty wore when she was walking her mother fay in a
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piece i titled "dog walker." >> reporter: where do you find all this stuff? >> we have a place upstate and there's stores there, salvation army's and so forth, there's yard sales. >> reporter: in his studio upstairs wegman and his long- time assistant jason burch prepare the set. to make it look like the dog's actually wearing the pants, they shape them with plastic and foam and tape the pants down onto the stool. wegman explains that dogs are naturally good at standing still because they are "pointers," dogs bred to freeze and point to an animal being hunted. to get this shirt to fit right, wegman cuts up the back. burch provides the human hands and arms. wegman has tricks for getting the dogs to look where he wants them to. >> i have photographed humans. not probably my strength. i like looking at and touching dogs. moving their head around, or giving them direction. they expect me to talk to them and move them around.
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>> reporter: do you think the dogs enjoy this work? >> they love to work. they like to be picked. they want to be the one up on- that you're looking at and talking to. you did it. that's a hard one. super good. in fact, i have to pretend-- if i'm working with topper, i have to put flo nearby on a pedestal so she thinks she's working. she's probably wise to the fact that she's just a stand-in. but, that second-best is okay, too, in that circumstance. >> reporter: you get really close to these dogs emotionally? >> oh yeah. yeah. they're in on everything, and i'm never with-- without them. >> reporter: even though wegman now works with digital cameras, most of his career he worked exclusively with a 20 by 24 inch polaroid camera. you say a polaroid camera. we're not talking about a polaroid that somebody might have at home. can you describe what the camera is like? >> that camera is the size of a
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big refrigerator and it's housed in wood and it's quite beautiful actually but very rickety and fragile. >> reporter: only five such cameras were originally built. when wegman worked outside, he hauled the huge camera in a truck. the large sheets of instant film could be viewed immediately. so wegman could make then changes to his dogs or the set. the catch is that there's no editing or touching up the photos later so if there was a blemish, wegman either lived with it, or didn't display the photo. wegman took about 15,000 photos with the polaroid, many stored here in his studio. he recently went through every box, cataloguing and digitizing each image. >> and the process was pretty amazing because i've seen each dog get younger and younger. the next wave of dogs. and it was really moving. >> reporter: the project took more than a year, and wegman
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discovered photographs he'd completely forgotten about. many had never been shown. >> here's something that i'm slightly embarrassed about, but. >> reporter: why are you embarrassed? >> i don't know dogs in sunglasses, it's a cliche. >> reporter: do you try to avoid cliches- is that something you struggle with? >> you know i was really tortured by the thought of doing those sort of poker playing dog kind of things that sort of kitsch. i wanted my dogs to be-- they could be funny but they had also had to be beautiful and more mysterious even when i made them tall as people. this is kind of funny i just noticed that but there's a reflection of a dog in that can you see that? that's pretty amazing. >> reporter: you didn't you didn't notice that before. >> no i never noticed that. >> reporter: the rediscovery of these original polaroids became the catalyst for wegman's latest book. some of them are also on display in a new york gallery until the end of this month. more of his work will be at the metropolitan museum of art in new york in january and a major international exhibition will launch next summer.
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>> this is pbs newshour weekend, sunday. >> sreenivasan: now to viewers like you-- your chance to comment on the stories you've seen here on pbs newshour weekend. as part of our ongoing series" america addicted," last saturday we brought you a story from ohio, where state attorney general mike dewine is suing five major pharmaceutical companies who make opioid painkillers. >> they told physicians and spent millions, hundreds of millions of dollars, to get this message across to physicians that these opioids were not very addictive. >> sreenivasan: dewine argues the companies should be held accountable for the economic costs of the opioid crisis, such as the strains on the healthcare system, police and jails, and treatment programs. here's what some of you had to say: alexander woodsum said: "until we invest in addiction treatment and replacement medications, nothing will happen. also as long as big pharma is
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putting profits before people's lives nothing will change." gail hanna pointed to the role of doctors: "i will agree that big pharma mislead doctors, but doctors were unaware of a drug that mimics heroin being highly addictive is a little bit of a stretch! let's put the blame on all the places where it needs to go. doctors were taking the easy route. here take this pill." claire laskowski added: "big pharma is guilty of a lot of things but they are not responsible for doctors' reckless prescribing practices nor are they responsible for people's behavior." and michael vitacco commented: "it is always convenient to blame someone else. i've taken opioids for three tough surgeries and did not have a problem because i took the pills as prescribed and did not need a refill." and there was this from helen jacobs: "what is happening to the people who legitimately are helped by their doctors who are ordering opioids for their pain? people who used to have quality of life have been taken off of opioids even though they were not abusing the opioids." as always we welcome your
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comments on our website at, on our facebook page, and on twitter at newshour. >> sreenivasan: that's all for this edition of pbs newshour weekend. i'm hari sreenivasan. thanks for watching. have a good night. captioning sponsored by wnet captioned by media access group at wgbh >> pbs newshour weekend is made possible by: bernard and irene schwartz.
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the cheryl and philip milstein family. sue and edgar wachenheim, iii. dr. p. roy vagelos and diana t. vagelos. the j.p.b. foundation. the anderson family fund. rosalind p. walter, in memory of abby m. o'neill. barbara hope zuckerberg. corporate funding is provided by mutual of america-- designing customized individual and group retirement products. that's why we're your retirement company. additional support has been provided by: and by the corporation for public broadcasting, and by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you. [♪]
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david: did you think you were gonna grow up to be ceo of a large company like pepsi? it was like a dream come true. i pinch myself every day to say, "is this really happening to me?" do you get advice from people all the time and do you ever listen to it? you never know if a nugget of an idea can actually translate to big success in the company. not long ago, an activist showed up. my job is not to keep an activist happy. my job is to make sure this company is performing very, very well. suppose somebody has a product from a company that's based in atlanta and you see them in their refrigerator. what do you do? i let it be known that i'm very unhappy. woman: would you fix your tie, please? well, people wouldn't recognize me if my tie was fixed, but okay. just leave it this way. woman: and they-- all right. [♪] david: i don't consider myself a journalist.


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