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U.K. Brexit Debate Heats Up; Journeying "Into the Heart of Racism"; Imagine a World. Aired 2-2:30p ET
Aired March 10, 2016 - 14:00:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
CHRISTIANE AMANPOUR, CNN HOST (voice-over): Tonight: the fallout from a U.K. newspaper splash claiming the queen backs a British exit from
Europe has reinvigorated a crucial debate, one which could radically change this nation and a continent.
Should the U.K. stay in or should it leave the E.U.?
We hear from both sides.
Also ahead: racism rearing its ugly head again across Europe, in the United States and, of course, South Africa. "Run Racist Run," the author
and journalist, Eusebius McKaiser, joins me here in the studio.
AMANPOUR: Good evening, everyone, and welcome to the program. I'm Christiane Amanpour in London, where the debate is heating up over
Britain's most important question in a generation: should the U.K. stay or should it leave the E.U.?
Prime Minister David Cameron, who says he's renegotiated the best deal possible for the U.K. to remain in the E.U., headed to a car plant today
and said that it all comes down to one word: jobs.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DAVID CAMERON, PRIME MINISTER, GREAT BRITAIN: The question isn't whether Britain could still be a great country outside Europe; of course,
The question is, where will our economy be stronger?
Where will our children have more opportunities?
Where will families have the most security?
Where will Britain be better off, in or out of a reformed Europe?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: But the "No" campaigners say Cameron's got it all wrong. His fellow party member and leader of the House of Commons, Chris Grayling,
says that Cameron's reforms amount to not much and hand all the power to Brussels.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CHRIS GRAYLING, LEADER, HOUSE OF COMMONS: A vote to stay is a vote for an unreformed European Union, which will hoover up more money and more
power at every opportunity it gets.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: Decision day is June 23rd, that's the date of the referendum and it is dominating the British press, of course. "The Sun,"
which is a pro-Brexit tabloid, owned by Rupert Murdoch, claims that the queen herself is in that same camp, despite her decades-long policy of
fierce neutrality and a stiff complaint from Buckingham Palace.
AMANPOUR: So with me in the studio is the former leader of the Conservative Party, Lord Michael Howard, who believes that it's time for
the U.K. to leave the E.U. And taking the opposite view, in Berlin, is the writer and historian, Timothy Garton Ash.
So, gentlemen, welcome to both of you.
Lord Howard, let me ask you first to comment on something you've written about the whole renegotiation effort. You have written that you
would love to stay in the E.U. if only you could have a better deal and that you have said that the E.U. leaders cannot contemplate any loosening
of the ties which bind member states.
But are you not convinced by this sort of roadblock to ever-closer union?
And why not, since the E.U. is sort of fragmenting anyway?
LORD MICHAEL HOWARD, FORMER LEADER, CONSERVATIVE PARTY: Well, I agree with you that the E.U. in its current form is a flawed and failing project.
AMANPOUR: Well, I didn't say that.
HOWARD: Well, that's the implication of what you said.
AMANPOUR: No, I just said there's no ever-closer existential union.
HOWARD: Well I think, no, there is, because the European Court of Justice and the institutions of the European Union would remain supreme
over our Parliament and over our court. We would still have to pay in billions of pounds a year, which we could better use at home.
We wouldn't have control of our borders. We wouldn't be able to decide who comes into our country. And had there been the fundamental and
far-reaching reform, which the prime minister started out by wanting to achieve, I would probably have been with him in voting to remain.
But I'm afraid he didn't achieve that, not his fault, the fault of the European leaders. And in its current state, Europe is a flawed and failing
project and we'd be better off out.
AMANPOUR: I'm going to talk to you about why you think Europe is going to be so desperate to keep the ties that you like.
But let me first ask you, Timothy Garton Ash, from the perspective of sitting in Berlin there and listening to all presumably that you're hearing
about this, the E.U. failed to give Cameron a better deal; the E.U. is still bent on sovereignty and ever-closer union, is that the picture you
get from there?
TIMOTHY GARTON ASH, BRITISH HISTORIAN: Absolutely not. This is certainly not a flawed and failing union, seen from here. Nor does almost
anyone in this city --
ASH: -- the central country of Europe, want an ever-closer union. That's a real canard from 20 years ago or 25 years ago. I think the
eurosceptics are tilting at windmills.
The central argument is about the basic facts of our membership in the European Union. We have done extremely well over the last 40 years inside
the European Union; to leave would be to risk our economy, our security, our place in the world and even the unity of the United Kingdom because, if
the English voted to leave, the Scots would vote to leave the United Kingdom.
These are the fundamental arguments that we should be having and not some tiny small print on some negotiation.
AMANPOUR: So let me ask you, Lord Howard, then, the idea, because it is a scary idea, isn't it, presumably for Britain lovers, that Scotland
could finally spin off and leave you with tiny little England.
HOWARD: No, no, no. Scotland, I don't believe for a moment --
AMANPOUR: -- Nicholas Sturgeon has --
HOWARD: -- Nicholas Sturgeon says lots of things.
AMANPOUR: -- raised that possibility.
HOWARD: The truth is we just had a financial settlement with Scotland. And the rest of the United Kingdom is paying 5 billion pounds
for one year to make up the deficit in the Scottish budget.
And given the fall in the oil price, Scotland could not possibly now go alone. So and if it were to do that, which I don't think it will for a
moment, it's far from clear that the European Union would allow it to enter, because Spain is very worried about the separatists it has to deal
And Spain could veto any Scottish application to join the European Union. So I don't think there's a serious risk of Scotland leaving the
AMANPOUR: Can I put something to you -- and to both of you, actually because I think it's kind of the heart of the matter.
Brexit campaigners say, I mean you've said it and your colleagues have said it, that we are the fifth biggest economy in the world and that they
are going to just want to love to do business with us, they won't ignore us. What did you say, we're valuable members of the E.U., we'd be sorely
However, what about Michael Froman, who's the U.S. trade representative?
He said last year that no free trade agreement would exist with Britain if it left the E.U. and the United States would have no interest in
Do you think the Brexit camp is playing down the difficulty, not the impossibility but the difficulty of negotiating a whole set of new trade
deals with all these people?
Why would they want to do it quickly and at your pace after you've punched them in the face?
HOWARD: Well, we're not punching them in the face. We want a perfectly amicable separation. And the rules of the European Union provide
that you have two years to negotiate after you've decided to leave and in that time everything stays the same.
So you've got plenty of time to reach a new agreement and the reason why people would want to have an agreement with us is because we're a big
market, a prosperous market, the fifth biggest economy in the world, as you've said. People want to sell their goods to us, their services to us.
So it's in everybody's interest for us to have a proper free trading agreement after we leave the European Union. After all, there's much more
free trade around in the world these days than there was when we joined 40 years ago.
AMANPOUR: So remain campaigners, Timothy, say, that the E.U. takes 40 percent to 50 percent of British exports whereas Britain accounts for a
10th or less of the E.U.'s. I mean, basically there's a lot of statistics that's are being thrown around and I guess from your perspective or from
the European perspective, which hopefully you're going to bring for us, do you think there will be an appetite for E.U. leaders or the whole business
community to give Britain favorable treatment in this separation period?
And to suddenly to rush to want to have the same number and beneficial trade deals as they have under the current state of affairs?
ASH: Christiane, I have spent the last few days talking to business and political leaders here in Berlin and it's absolutely clear what they
would do. The business leaders would think very carefully about making any new investment in Britain; BMW, which is a big employer in Britain, has
already said that to its employees.
The political leadership would turn immediately to France to try and forge a core Europe with France.
As for the free trade negotiations, you mentioned already the United States' chief trade negotiator. I've talked to Pascal Lamy (ph), who was
the head of the WTO, it absolutely defies logic and historical experience to believe that Britain alone could get a better free trade deal with the
United States or China or India than the biggest and richest single market in the world, the European Union, with 500 million consumers --
ASH: -- has got --
HOWARD: Let me --
ASH: -- and, in any case, all these free trade negotiations take many years and there will be years of risk and uncertainty. So this is truly
for the birds and the Brexit campaign, rather unusually for British conservatives, is peddling against rational fears a truly irrational
HOWARD: I'm afraid Timothy's got it wrong. Let me give you the reasons why we would be able to negotiate fair trade, free trade agreements
with the rest of the world.
First of all, as I've said, we're the fifth biggest economy, a market to which everyone wants access. The Germans want to carry on selling their
BMWs to us, the French want to carry on selling their wine to us.
And, secondly, when we negotiate free trade agreements with the rest of the world, we're going to be in a much better position than the European
Union is because we're not hamstrung by the knee to protect French agriculture through the common agricultural policy.
The European Union has not been a force for free trade in the world because of its protectionism over agriculture. We would be in a much
better position to negotiate these deals.
AMANPOUR: We don't have a huge amount of time left.
But let me ask you, this is a unique experience --
ASH: But you know, it would all --
AMANPOUR: -- just one second, sorry, Timothy -- planning to get out of the E.U., we don't have a road map for that.
And do you think the Brexit camp has been open enough about the risks because the divorce will not be easy. It will take a long time, according
to all the experts and the OECD says that it would be bad for the British economy and the Europe economy and the global economy and Stephen Hawking
and some of your most eminent scientists today said that it would be a disaster for British science.
HOWARD: But they said that because they feared that European scientists wouldn't be able to come and work in Britain. But of course
they could. Of course we'd welcome European scientists.
Look, the future is uncertain, whatever we do. There are risks in staying in. We would be dragged along, kicking and screaming, into this
Timothy says they're not interested in it but they haven't abandoned the objective themselves. They've only said we wouldn't be bound by it.
It's still there for them. And as the House of Commons Library has said today, the deal that David Cameron has done may be quashed and set aside by
the European Court of Justice.
AMANPOUR: Let me give Timothy the last word in reply.
ASH: Well, first of all, it's absolutely self-evident that it's more uncertain to go from something you know to something you don't know. I
welcome this debate because we're now actually talking about the real issues.
What are the advantages?
What are the disadvantages?
What's the E.U. good for?
What's it not good for?
I think that's a good debate to have. And I'm absolutely certain that when it comes to the point, barring really unforeseen accidents, the Brits
will weigh the arguments, will use their famous common sense and will vote to stay.
AMANPOUR: Well, I'm sure Lord Howard doesn't believe that but I'll say that for him.
And thank you both very much. We'll continue to have this debate because there are lots of issues that actually need to be touched upon, the
facts of all of this.
So thank you very much for coming in.
And thank you to you, Timothy in Berlin, as well.
And as the E.U. referendum looms, xenophobia is on the rise throughout the continent and around the world. We break down this global trend with
the South African author of "Run Racist Run," Eusebius McKaiser -- next.
AMANPOUR: Welcome back to the program.
My next guest argues that racism around the world is worse than we think, even in the Rainbow Nation. In his new book, " Run Racist Run,"
South African writer Eusebius McKaiser chronicles his nation's rising social discontent and he warns that the unresolved race issues are a
ticking political time bomb.
With racism raising its ugly head in the U.S. presidential campaign and also amidst the refugee crisis here in Europe, Eusebius McKaiser joins
me live in the studio now to talk more about all of this.
AMANPOUR: Welcome to the studio.
EUSEBIUS MCKAISER, WRITER: Thank you, Christiane. It's wonderful to be here.
AMANPOUR: We've talked -- indeed -- we've talked across the satellite from South Africa and you've been chronicling this and here's your new
Tell me what you mean by worse that we (INAUDIBLE). You said you wanted to get to the heart of racism.
MCKAISER: It's worse, Christiane, in the sense that, when we do talk about racism publicly, we tend to talk about the worst manifestations of
racism -- a lynching; blood has to be spilled, there has to be absolutely clear, categorical evidence of hatred in the motivation of a crime that is
race-based before we say racism happened.
And what I'm suggesting as the central tenet of this book is that actually beneath the overt racism lies vicious ill will inside the
character and psychology of the racist and that ill will is there, even when it doesn't manifest in overt public action.
AMANPOUR: So that's -- I mean you've actually sort of dismissed the word subtle racism. There's nothing subtle about racism, whether it's
violent or otherwise.
MCKAISER: That's spot on because traditionally we draw a distinction at least colloquially between what we call benign racism, subtle racism and
what we might call over racism. And if you speak to any victim of racism today, there's nothing subtle about a look, a gaze that suggests you're
less than human.
So all racism is violent. No racism is subtle. But some might manifest in a bruised body and the rest won't. But absolutely intrinsic to
racism is violence, whether it is linguistic racism in the form of a slur or whether we're talking a lynching.
AMANPOUR: So I don't know whether you believe that racism can ever be eradicated.
But do you believe it can be improved in your country?
And what are the consequences right now in your country?
MCKAISER: That is the most salient question facing South African society and I think it connects with the struggles of, for example, black
people in America. I think we can reduce incidents of racism, Christiane, if we deal with inequality. Obviously we've got to deal with poverty in
South Africa and also low economic growth.
But fundamentally, in an unjust society, you will have victims of racism continue to be excluded from the economy, from social institutions.
You will not be able to deal with white supremacist attitudes unless you've dealt with material inequity.
And I think the mistake we often make in South Africa and also in the rest of the globe where racism is prominent, is that we tend to divorce
discussions about racism from discussions of material justice.
AMANPOUR: Well, you know, I want to put out statistics as well because obviously we all know that the overwhelming majority of South
Africans are black and the overwhelming minority are white. The rest identify as colored and as India nation.
But here's the real issue, when it comes to unemployment, which I think is part of what you're talking about, 7.3 percent of whites are
unemployed. Remember, they're 9 percent of the population, compared to 39 percent of blacks. And I'm sure that's higher for youth.
So with this ticking time bomb, you've talked about it at home and you've talked about it, you know, in relation to the United States. Are
you surprised to see, A, this situation which has led to the Black Lives Matter campaign and, B, that it's sort of out there, as if it's kind of OK
to talk about in the presidential campaign?
There are all sorts of barriers to this kind of thing which just seem to be breaking.
MCKAISER: I think that's spot on. And I think it's very important that, when we talk about racism globally, that although there's local
texture to how the racism experience plays out, whether it be in the States, whether it be in Europe, whether it be in South Africa, that there
are threads that run throughout it.
Underlying the backlash against migrants and immigrants in Europe is not just xenophobia but blatant racism. Donald Trump's entire presidential
campaign is really piggy-backing on deep racist and exclusionary attitudes in the States.
And so, for me, although there are particularities to the South African experience, for example the anomaly of a numerical majority of the
demographic feeling excluded from society, the reality is that global racism is part of the world's history of colonialism. And I think that's
why there's such deep resonance between the student protests in South Africa, what is happening here at Oxford University a stone's throw from
here and what's happening in America.
And what's exciting about it is that, although there is social volatility --
MCKAISER: -- in each of these region, I think there's also a very important moment in world history, where young people in particular are
saying, no more will we accept an unjust and fundamentally unequal world. And in some ways, I think they're doing better than their elders.
AMANPOUR: Well, that's really interesting because you're right, the whole idea of an unequal world is motivating a lot of politics.
But again, a lot of leaders are fanning the flames of xenophobia, a lot of political leaders around the world, and particularly in Europe right
What does it mean to racists in South Africa, those who might be racist, when they see a presidential contender in the United States fail to
disavow in any significant way until he was pushed to do it the former leader of the Ku Klux Klan, David Duke?
MCKAISER: Well, I think it's interesting because of course most people who are racist don't self-identify as racist. Most people would
like to believe that they are fundamentally decent. And you and I don't want to have self-identifications of our own decency to be showed up. And
so most racists, in their view of the world, they think they're quite subtle about it.
So I don't think you'll find many people who are on the spectrum of racism -- that is non-bloody racism, as I call it in the book -- self-
identifying with someone like Donald Trump, for example.
But of course the reality is that Donald Trump is just the worst template of a whole range of racisms which can be crude, in his case, and
on the less crude side, it usually manifests for example as unearned privilege, an inability to recognize that for example, you're a white
person in South Africa, part of the single-digit unemployment stat that you read out, Christiane, that what explains your wealth in South Africa if
you're a white person are not the following two things, effort plus genetic luck.
It is the history of colonialism and unearned privileges structurally in society and I think that there are way too many people, especially in my
country who are on the fortunate side of the gene coefficient who do not recognize the role that luck and historical injustice plays in situating
them where they are currently in society.
AMANPOUR: Eusebius McKaiser, a timely warning. Thank you very much. "Run Racist Run," your new book. Thank you for joining us here.
AMANPOUR: And after a break, imagining a tiny island where cultures clash every single day. An incredible film showing daily life on Lampedusa
just off Italy and the refugees who have risked their lives to get there. The Venice Film Festival awarded top prize to "Fire at Sea" and we speak to
its director -- next.
AMANPOUR: And finally tonight, imagine a world with its oceans aflame. Gianfranco Rosi's documentary, "Fire at Sea," points the lens at
the refugees crossing and often drowning in the Mediterranean as they try to reach their first European port of call, the Italian island of
The Italian prime minister lamented that --
AMANPOUR: -- the Mediterranean Sea is a sea, not a cemetery.
And the actress, Meryl Streep, called Rosi's film "urgent, imaginative and necessary filmmaking," when she presented the Eritrean-born director
with the Golden Bear at the Berlin Film Festival. We caught up with Rosi in Rome to talk about the urgency he felt making this documentary.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GIANFRANCO ROSI, DIRECTOR, "FIRE AT SEA": Well, "Fuocoammare," it's more than a portrait on the refugees. First of all, I think it's a
portrait on the island of Lampedusa.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (from captions): We have small children here.
Please, can you help us?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (from captions): OK. How many -- how many people?
ROSI (voice-over): For me, it was important to show that, you know, these are people.
It's always numbers, numbers, numbers.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ROSI: And for me, it was important to have account, intimacy, to be able to capture the eyes and the -- also the story.
There's a moment in the film of a group of Nigerian people that I encountered in the middle of the sea. And then II arrived with them in
Lampedusa and I spent 3-4 days with them.
And there's a moment where they chant, with the gospel, the tragedy is like a testimony of their travel from Nigeria up to Lampedusa. And I think
this is a core moment of the film.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (from captions): This is my testimony. We could no longer stay in Nigeria. Many were dying. Most were bombed, soldiers were
bombed and we flee from Nigeria.
ROSI (voice-over): Well, unfortunately, because of selfish political reason, every country pretend for internal political reason to approach and
face this tragedy on their own.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ROSI: And the fact that there are the countries that are closing down and building wall, for me, is a big defeat, political, moral and human.
And I don't want to live in a Europe like that, you know.
I think that the film is a testimony of one of the biggest crises that Europe is facing right now after the Holocaust. We cannot accept the
fact that, you know, thousands of people are dying in the sea, escaping from a tragedy.
As I said, the Mediterranean is a tomb there right now, you know, like 20,000-25,000 people died in the last 20 years just on the route to
Lampedusa, to this island.
When I won the award, I dedicated the award to, first of all, unfortunately, to the people that they never reached Lampedusa.
But also to the Lampedusa people because they were the one always opening their hands and embracing people arriving from the sea.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (from captions): Down in the hold there were (INAUDIBLE). They paid $800. They were (INAUDIBLE). When I got them
(INAUDIBLE), there was no (INAUDIBLE).
COSI (voice-over): I remember when I met Dr. Bartolo, the first things I asked him was like, how do you explain that the people of
Lampedusa, they are so open?
And he told me that Lampedusa and our people, they are fishermen. And the fishermen always accept anything that comes from the sea.
And I thought it was a beautiful metaphor. So we all probably should try to embody the soul of fishermen and having a sense more of acceptance.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: Important insight, indeed. And that's it from London tonight. Thanks for watching. And don't forget to follow us online.