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Sunday Morning / Jane Pauley
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April 3, 2022 11:57 am

CBS Sunday Morning,

Sunday Morning / Jane Pauley

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April 3, 2022 11:57 am

Hailed as one of the greatest child prodigies since Mozart, pianist Ruth Slenczynska played her first concert when she was 4.

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What's Right What's Left
Pastor Ernie Sanders
What's Right What's Left
Pastor Ernie Sanders
What's Right What's Left
Pastor Ernie Sanders
What's Right What's Left
Pastor Ernie Sanders
What's Right What's Left
Pastor Ernie Sanders

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I'm Jane Pauley, and this is Sunday Morning. The fighting in Ukraine continues as the world watches on, hoping for an end to the bloodshed. But what will that take? How can this conflict finally draw to a close? David Martin will put those questions to General David Petraeus. Those who know Vladimir Putin best say he expects nothing less than total victory in Ukraine. But with prospects for that outcome looking increasingly uncertain, is there another way out?

David Martin considers Putin's options. Just over five weeks into the war and one thing is clear about how it will end. There will be no surrender.

There will be a negotiated settlement, I think, but clearly there's still a lot of fighting going on as each side tries to create conditions that give it more leverage at the negotiating table. Former CIA director and commander of America's wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, retired Army General David Petraeus says the Russians have already lost the battle for Kiev. They will not be able to accomplish what was presumably their main objective from the outset, which was to topple the Zelensky government and replace it with a pro-Russian government. If the plan to take Kiev has failed, has the decisive battle of this war already been fought? Only if Ukraine can prevent another decisive battle from being fought. This could be pivotal in the sense that it's perilous for Ukraine. The peril now looms in eastern Ukraine, where Russia is reinforcing and concentrating its firepower in an attempt to encircle much of Ukraine's army. The outcome of the vicious battle for the city of Maryupol could be the key. Maryupol has become the Ukrainian Alamo, fighting to the last defender, tying down a considerable number of Russian battalions and making them pay for literally every block that they're taking. Once that does eventually fall, as tragically it appears will be the case, that will free up a number of Russian forces. But if he were to destroy the Ukrainian army in the east, would then the rest of the country be open to him?

I don't think so. You're fighting an entire nation. There will be limits to how far they can go, and I don't expect that it would go more than the middle of the country. They'd love to get to the very top of the country, to the very center. Is it possible the Ukrainians could hold out? If they can get the additional weapons, ammo, vehicles and so forth. Absolutely.

No question. And of course they have this unbelievable determination, fortitude, creativity, resourcefulness. They're everything the Russians are not. President Zelensky, who has proved himself not just a brilliant communicator in chief, but a savvy commander in chief, says the war is at a turning point. Would you say it's going to take weeks or months for this to play out?

Could be weeks, it could be months, depending on how bad the damage is. You're basically describing a war of attrition. There is a war of attrition that's going on, and again it's not just on the battlefield, it's also to a degree between what's happening in Ukraine and what's happening to Moscow and to the Russian economy, financial system and business community.

And a war between two men. Between Vladimir Putin, who cannot seem to appear weak, he has to remain the strongman, infallible, the master of everything, and President Zelensky, who is leading a country that is fighting for its very survival. U.S. officials say one of them, Putin, is not being told the truth about what's happening on the battlefield. How does war end when the leader isn't being told the truth? Well, the leader isn't dumb. He has to recognize the reality of what has happened.

They did not achieve what they set out to achieve. Deep down, he realizes that he has plunged his country into a colossal mistake and has demonstrated colossal misjudgment. Will he be sufficiently chastened so that he doesn't try something like this again? I don't know that he will think that he is sufficiently chastened.

What he will be is sufficiently, we hope, sufficiently weakened. President Biden calls her his closest friend. Norah O'Donnell talks with the first sister, Valerie Biden Owens. I do love in hearing about your own career and your work on the campaigns that you've been described as an iron fist in a cashmere glove. Oh, that sounds pretty cool. I like that. I'll take that. Thank you. Do you want me to comment on that? I'll just say thank you.

Yeah, I better leave it alone. Valerie Biden Owens may have the message control her big brother Joe sometimes lacks, but that doesn't mean she's afraid to speak her mind. What was the code word that the Secret Service gave you? Oh, hurricane. I took that as a compliment that I was a force of nature, but I was a good hurricane. And how have you been a force of nature for Joe Biden? I've been a sister.

That's what you have at the end of everything. You go to family. Family is at the heart of her life story, now a memoir, Growing Up Biden. The book is populated by her parents and three brothers, who she calls Jimmy, Frankie and one who may look familiar, Joey. Since age 25, she's led her brother's seven Senate races. Can you all hear me?

Because I wouldn't want you to miss a word of what I was saying. And first two bids for the presidency. Valerie Biden was the first female presidential campaign manager. After years of success, you were often up against people who thought a woman couldn't or shouldn't run a political campaign.

I had it a lot easier than some women because my brother pulled up a chair to the table, which was men. So this is my sister. She speaks for me.

What she says, assume that I say it. My sister really did manage my campaign. No PR firm. My sister managed it for real. But then I had to go it on my own. Would there be a President Joe Biden without Valerie Biden? Oh, sure. Joe is president because he's Joe. And I will always be the president's sister.

That's your Catholic humility. The campaign that cemented the Biden legend was Joe's 1972 Senate run. His unexpected victory was followed by unspeakable tragedy. A car accident that killed his wife, Neilia, and 13-month-old daughter, Naomi.

Sons Beau and Hunter were badly injured. The president said of you, she has not only believed in me, she helped me believe in myself. We did the improbable, winning this Senate race by 3,163 votes. And we had this young, promising Democratic star who was now a young widower with his heart ripped out. And he said, the boys cannot get another father.

The state of Delaware can get another senator. That's when my belief in Joe was so powerful that he could do both. I said, Joe, you got to do it because my brother is about purpose. And he needs a purpose. The crisis gave new purpose to Valerie, too.

You quit your job. You moved in. You became like a parent. In spite of the tragedy, it was really a magnificent time. Beau and Hunter were two and three years old.

I remember every day saying, I promise you, Neilia, I'll love them like they're my own. She eventually married Joe's law school friend, Jack Owens, and has three kids of her own, as well as a career as a campaign strategist and advocate for women. Today, at age 76, she chairs the Biden Institute at the University of Delaware, her and her brother's alma mater.

What does the Biden Institute do? Well, we try to educate the next generation of young leaders. We got to stand up and we got to fight. The 2020 campaign was the first she didn't manage for her brother.

It was also the first she didn't want him to enter. I believed that 2020 would be a bloody battle. The former president would stop at nothing. And the best way to go after Joe would be go after the family.

By the way, where's Hunter? My expectations were exceeded. But Joe said, I'm, I'm doing it. She writes Joe was the right person at the right time to lead our country. The campaign had practiced that Vice President Biden wouldn't respond.

Wouldn't take his fate. You're a senator. I'm not going to answer the question. Then he told him to shut up. Yeah. Will you shut up, man? So there's a time and a place and it was like enough.

I was really thrilled. I don't speak for the American people, but I think most, many of them said, yeah, this is a bully. Stop. Plain Talk has its place on the campaign trail. But this past week, the world focused on nine unscripted words about Vladimir Putin.

This man cannot remain power. Some called it a gaffe. Some people called it unvarnished truth. First of all, when anybody says Joe's a gaffe, a gaffe is he speaks the truth. Joe had just come from spending the afternoon with moms and their children that have been families destroyed. That's Joe.

He knows what grief and that pain is. Do you want Joe Biden to run for president again in 2024? Yeah, I think he's the right person at the right time for the right job. So watch us. He'll be in his eighties. Watch him. So why would Joe Biden want to run for president again when he could come back here? Because he has things still to do. And he has the stamina to do that. Yes, he does. Yeah, he's he's good.

It's not easy raising an older brother. Okay. Now streaming. I used to believe in progress that no matter what we do, we just end up back at the start. We're in crazy time. The Paramount Plus original series, The Good Fight, returns for its final season. The point isn't the end.

The point is winning. There are bad people in the world. The best way to protect the good people is to convict the bad. So here's to us.

The Good Fight, the final season, now streaming exclusively on Paramount Plus. Hi, podcast peeps. It's me, Drew Barrymore.

Oh, my goodness. I want to tell you about our new show. It's the Drew's News podcast. And in each episode, me and a weekly guest are going to cover all the quirky, fun, inspiring, and informative stories that exist out in the world because, well, I need it.

And maybe you do too. From the newest interior design trend, Barbie Corps, to the right and wrong way to wash your armpits. Also, we're going to get into things that you just kind of won't believe and were not able to do in daytime television. So watch out. Listen to Drew's News wherever you get your podcasts.

It's your good news on the go. She was a prodigy schooled by the great Rachmaninoff. Some compared her to Mozart. Now at age 97, pianist Ruth Slanczynska has a new album and much to share with our morocca. I'm old. You're experienced.

What a lovely word. 97-year-old concert pianist Ruth Slanczynska has been playing for the public for more years than a piano has keys. Where are you mentally during the recital? I go to a place I can't take anybody.

It's a place from where I get my music. I'm going to play for you, daisies. And Ruth has been going to that place since she was barely out of diapers. Here she is in 1930 at age five. By then, Ruth was an old hand hailed as one of the greatest child prodigies since Mozart. Born in Sacramento, she played her first concert when she was four. She played Berlin at six, Paris, France, France, France, France, France, France, France, France, France, France, Paris at seven, and along the way was mentored by some of the 20th century's greatest virtuosos, including Russian composer Sergei Rachmaninoff.

Ruth still wears the necklace Rachmaninoff gave her after she filled in for him at a concert when she was nine. You were called the miracle child. Every child is a miracle, really. But you were an awesomely talented one. I wasn't.

No. If I were talented, I wouldn't have had to work so hard. Working hard is putting it lightly. From the age of three, her Polish immigrant father, a violinist frustrated by his own limited success, forced Ruth to practice for nine hours a day. I would be practicing and hearing from the street. My sister's calls as they were playing with other kids. I wanted to be one of those kids who played. And if I didn't practice, I was chased around the apartment with a stick. My father's magic stick.

I didn't want that. She quit performing at age 15 and later ran away from home. She got married, then divorced, and to make ends meet, started teaching before returning to the concert stage in her late 20s. How did your relationship with playing change? Were you falling more in love with it?

Oh, it just grew and I kept playing bigger and bigger and going to different parts of the world. She began recording albums and appeared on TV. In 1963, she paid tribute to Rachmaninoff on CBS's Camera 3. Among her many fans, an American president with whom she once played a duet. How was Harry Truman on the piano? Good.

Really good. And he was so personable. She says President Truman summoned her to the White House when she was in Washington for a concert. The place was crowded with people. I thought he played very musically and they all applauded and he took a bow. Then these two men came and pulled me away, still flabbergasted, halfway down the hall.

I said, I didn't even get a picture of it. Ruth later got this autograph, which she donated, along with other memorabilia, to Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, where she served as artist-in-residence and met James Kerr, the love of her life. How much did your life change when you met your second husband? Oh, it changed completely. I became a real person.

I'd marry him again all over again. They were married for 34 years before his death in 2001. They had no children, but Ruth's legacy lives on through her students, including Shelley Morman Stallman, a professional musician and teacher in her own right. What has Ruth taught you about teaching? It's important to impart upon young students and on students of all ages this sense of being a part of the past.

They're larger than themselves. Ruth is more than a teacher. She's become family and lives with Shelley and her husband Randy near Hershey, Pennsylvania. She believes that you don't look back, you gain from the past, but you're always looking forward. And I think that was her secret to success in so many ways. Which explains her new album. With My Life in Music, Ruth brings fresh perspective to favorite compositions from Bach to Barber. Back at home, Ruth Slanczynska regaled Me Live with a favorite encore of hers.

Chopin's waltz in C sharp minor. Are you more in connection with the inside now when you play than you've ever been before? Well, I certainly can say more because I've experienced more than I did when I was young. A person 60 years old has experienced a lot of living and a person 20 years old has not.

And a person 97 years old. There you are. One of the big prizes at tonight's Grammys, Song of the Year.

Our Steve Hartman nominates a different tune for Song of the Ages. I remember that. It's been 61 years of wedded bliss, but Mort and Susan Block of Kennett Square, Pennsylvania, say they're meant to be, almost never was. Right.

Not because of Mort. He knew he wanted to marry her from day one. It was just like that. It was instant for me. But Susan, not so much.

I didn't have any grandiose feeling that it was going to go anywhere. To complicate matters, Mort was a sailor. And after that first date, he headed out to sea, where on the bridge of the destroyer Hazelwood, he wrote a song for Susan. And my feelings were, I miss you more each day, since you've gone away. The song was called My Love, and it worked its magic. And then it went in a drawer and it stayed there.

Enter my grandson. Then I was like, oh, what's that? Matt Block saw the sheet music and shared it with some friends. Everyone was like, damn, this is like, this is a hit.

This is great. Hey, Matt works in the music industry, so he was able to gather some of the best studio musicians in the country. And together, they took that dusty old love song and made it sing. You never seem to know that I love you so. Mort's love song, originally intended for an audience of one, has now been played more than a million times on social media. I was floored running up and down the hall.

It was unbelievable. And that is just the beginning. This fall, Mort Block, now 82, will grace the cover of an album featuring My Love and other collaborations. Perhaps a Grammy next year, but for Mort and Susan, like couples everywhere, cheers. The song of the year will always be their song. Thank you for listening.

Please join us when our trumpet sounds again next Sunday morning. This is Intelligence Matters with former acting director of the CIA, Michael Morell. Bridge Colby is co-founder and principal of the Marathon Initiative, a project focused on developing strategies to prepare the United States for an era of sustained great power competition. The United States put our mind to something we can usually figure it out. What people are saying and what we kind of know analytically and empirically is our strategic situation, our military situation is not being matched up with what we're doing. Follow Intelligence Matters wherever you get your podcasts.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-01-29 15:40:53 / 2023-01-29 15:48:48 / 8

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