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CBS Sunday Morning / Jane Pauley
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September 9, 2018 10:49 am

CBS Sunday Morning

CBS Sunday Morning / Jane Pauley

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September 9, 2018 10:49 am

Almanac: When Japan attacked Oregon; Some of our favorite things; Tearing down a wall; Bob Woodward: Trump in the White House; National Museum of Brazil destroyed by a fire

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I'm Jane Pauley and this is Sunday Morning. All this past week we've been hearing about a new book by journalist Bob Woodward concerning the inner workings of the Trump White House. This morning we'll be hearing from Bob Woodward himself in his first broadcast interview. David Martin will be posing the questions. White House aides so afraid of what an impulsive president might do, they were stealing documents from his desk.

So he wouldn't sign them because they realized that this would endanger the country. Ahead this Sunday morning, the explosive book President Trump calls total fiction. Are you ready for a tweet storm directed at you? I've been there before.

We'll have those stories and more just ahead. And now a page from our Sunday Morning almanac, September 9, 1942, 76 years ago today. The day the United States mainland came under enemy attack during World War II. For that was the day pilot Nobuo Fujita firebombed a forest near Brookings, Oregon.

Launched from a submarine off the Pacific coast, Fujita piloted his small plane to a spot just north of the California border, as he recalled years later. The mission scared the daylight out of me. I did not think I would come back alive. He dropped two incendiary bombs, neither of which touched off the massive fire that was hoped for. And despite his fears, he did make it back alive. 20 years later, Fujita made a return trip to Brookings, this time as a guest at the annual Azalea Festival. I did not know how people would react to me.

I thought they would throw stones or eggs or words. Though some objected to his visit, no objects were thrown, and he presented the town with a samurai sword as a gesture of peace. Nobuo Fujita paid other visits to Brookings before dying in 1997 at the age of 85.

His sword remains on display at the Brookings Library, while his mission is remembered nearby on a very special Oregon trail known as the bombsite trail. Before there were podcasts, there was television. Remember? See what's new under the sun every Sunday morning.

Tearing down bitterly divisive walls is more than just a dream. It's a reality in the town Steve Hartman has just revisited. Even though this neighborhood in Somerville, South Carolina is predominantly black, no one really noticed when Annie Caddell moved in seven years ago. At least as we reported a few months ago, no one really noticed at first. When she came here she seemed to be very nice.

Until? A little while later she started putting up confederate flags. And so began a very public fight. When the neighbors protested in front of her house, Annie invited counter protesters to stand in her yard. When the neighbors put up walls on both sides of her property to block the view, Annie put up a taller flagpole.

Once you get my hackles raised, I don't back down. Eventually the war settled into a stalemate of sorts. There were no more marches, no bigger walls, no taller flagpoles, just a quiet bitterness on both sides. Until Annie had a change of heart, quite literally.

When you have a heart attack and you're being told you're not going to live very long, you're facing your mortality. I needed to clean up the messes that I made by being so stubborn. She started with one of her fiercest critics, director of the local community resource center, Louis Smith. And she said, I have decided to take down the flag.

I said, huh? Not long after she presented him with the flag. And this Annie, we thank you.

Annie says before her health scare, she only saw the Confederate flag through her eyes as a way to honor relatives who fought for the South. But after she says that argument seemed so petty. We get people to be less stubborn without the heart attack part.

That would be lovely, but sometimes it takes a serious action to happen to you before you see your actions on others. Since this story first aired, things have only gotten better. Last month, Annie's neighbors returned the favor by taking down the walls. Hallelujah.

The fence is down. Thank you, Miss Annie. I feel like they welcomed me with open arms today. I have never felt so much love and care. In America, some people love to build walls.

But if this one block of this great country shows us anything, it's that we love tearing them down even more. Thank you. Come together.

This is beautiful. Coming soon, Mobituaries, a podcast on matters of death and life from Mo Rocca. Watergate journalist Bob Woodward made headlines once again this past week with his new book about the Trump White House entitled Fear. For his first broadcast interview, Bob Woodward sat down with our David Martin. You look at the operation of this White House, and you have to say, let's hope to God we don't have a crisis. For Bob Woodward, that is the bottom line to all the jaw-dropping chaos and discord described in his new book Fear, Trump in the White House, published by Simon & Schuster, a division of CBS. The people who work for him are worried that he will sign things or give orders that threaten the national security or the financial security of the country or the world. Aides, including then chief economic advisor Gary Cohn and White House staff secretary Rob Porter, literally stole documents like this one off the president's desk in the Oval Office. So he wouldn't sign them because they realized that this would endanger the country.

How do they get away with that? He doesn't remember. If it's not on his desk, if it's not immediately available for action, it goes away. Unelected officials like Cohn and Porter intentionally thwarting the actions of the elected president, the exact reverse of what a White House staff is supposed to do. Going back to Richard Nixon and Watergate, this is the ninth White House Woodward has covered.

In the eight others, I never heard of people on the staff in the White House engaging in that kind of extreme action. In Woodward's telling, Donald Trump does not see America as the indispensable nation. He sees it as an international sucker taken advantage of by allies and trading partners.

He complained his advisers don't know anything about business. All they want is to protect everybody that we pay for. According to Woodward, the president is obsessed by the fact the U.S. pays $3.5 billion a year to station troops in South Korea as the first line of defense against the North.

I don't know why they're there, he said at one meeting. Let's bring them all home. At another meeting, Secretary of Defense James Mattis starkly explained why the U.S. has 28,000 troops in Korea. We're doing this in order to prevent World War III. The United States has great strength and patience, but if it is forced to defend itself or its allies, we will have no choice but to totally destroy North Korea. The standoff with North Korea has been eased for the moment by the Singapore Summit, which brought together two leaders who had been trading nuclear threats and schoolyard insults.

Rocket man is on a suicide mission for himself and for his regime. The president later made that little rocket man on Twitter, which he told Staff Secretary Rob Porter, may be my best ever. When Porter asked if it might provoke Kim, the president replied, it's leader versus leader, man versus man, me versus Kim. The most dangerous moment of the standoff, Woodward says, came when the president went to work on another tweet. He drafts a tweet saying we are going to pull out dependents from South Korea, family members of the 28,000 people there. That tweet was never sent because of a backchannel message from North Korea that it would regard a pullout of dependents as a sign the U.S. was preparing to attack. At that moment, there was a sense of profound alarm in the Pentagon leadership that, my God, one tweet, and we have reliable information that the North Koreans are going to read this as an attack is imminent.

We are going to appoint Mad Dog Mattis as our secretary of defense. The president surrounded himself with generals, active duty and retired, all of whom had served in Afghanistan. But before he decided on a new Afghan strategy, he insisted on meeting with enlisted men who had served there as well.

I'm going to be talking to you about Afghanistan, what you think, your views. In a meeting the next day, he lashed out at the generals. I don't care about you guys, he said to Mattis, Joint Chiefs Chairman General Joseph Dunford, and then National Security Advisor H.R.

McMaster. The soldiers on the ground could run things better than you, he says to Mattis and Dunford, and there is a 25-minute dressing down of the generals and senior officials. In a recent tweet, the president acknowledged I'm tough as hell on people, and if I weren't, nothing would get done.

When he didn't like a trade deal Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross had negotiated with China, the president lit into him at a White House meeting. It's a terrible deal. We got screwed. You're past your prime. You're not a good negotiator anymore. You've lost it.

I don't trust you. Are you happy, Gary? He just passed a very big bill. I think he's pretty happy. Yes, I'm happy.

How's that? When economic advisor Cohen was upset over the president's reluctance to condemn white supremacists for the violence in Charlottesville, he went into the Oval Office to resign. Trump said, you can't resign.

I need you to do tax reform. And he said, if you leave, this is treason. And Trump talked him out of resigning. Afterwards, Chief of Staff John Kelly, who had been in the room, pulled him aside. Cohen wrote this down, quote from General Kelly, if that was me, I would have taken that resignation letter and shoved it up his six different times, end quote. The president has been bracing for Woodward's book since last month when the two lamented, or at least pretended to lament, that they had not talked.

Woodward recorded the phone conversation with the president's permission. It's really too bad because nobody told me about it. And I would have loved to have spoken to you. You know I'm very open to you. I think you've always been fair.

It's a tough look at the world and your administration and you. Right. Well, I assume that means it's going to be a negative book.

That's all right. Some are good and some are bad. Sounds like this is going to be a bad one. Last week, when the contents of Fear began to leak ahead of its scheduled publication, the president said it was worse than bad. The book is a work of fiction.

If you look back at Woodward's past, he had the same problem with other presidents. He likes to get publicity, sells some books. He's added fake books to his complaints about fake news. Are you ready for a tweet storm directed at you?

I've been there before. We respect the free press. I respect the free press. I don't respect the type of journalism, the shabby journalism that is being practiced by the Washington Post. Woodward's stories, written with Carl Bernstein on Richard Nixon and Watergate, were repeatedly denounced, until the White House was forced to apologize. Working on this book, Woodward says he went back to the days of his youth when he and Bernstein, portrayed by Robert Redford and Dustin Hoffman in the movie All the President's Men, made late night visits to the homes of potential sources.

This won't take long at all. Please go away, okay? We're from the Washington Post. Yes, I've read what you've written. I want to thank you. In one case, I called somebody at 11 o'clock at night and said I'd like to talk. Yeah, yeah, yeah, we'll get to it. And I said, well, how about now? And he said, now?

It's 11 o'clock at night. And I said, I'm four minutes away. Okay.

Come on over for a while. He doesn't identify his sources, but most readers will conclude he talked to both Gary Cohn and Rob Porter, along with several other White House officials who quit or were fired. The criticism would be, you've talked to the people who have an axe to grind against the president. Well, that's just not true.

Which is not true? Look, I talk to dozens and dozens of people and have notes and documentation on lots of things. Woodward quotes harsh criticism of the president from some of his closest advisers. Chief of Staff Kelly called his boss an idiot.

Secretary of Defense Mattis said the commander in chief acted like and had the understanding of a fifth or sixth grader. Both men have denied saying such things, and the president continues to denounce the book at every turn. Like these guys that write books and they put phony quotes out all over them. Totally phony quotes. I mean, totally like fraudulent books. They're like fraudulent books. He said the quotes are just not the way he speaks and the quotes are fabricated.

What do you say to that? He's wrong. And my reporting is meticulous and careful. In a second interview with CBS Sunday Morning, Woodward said he had multiple sources for every claim in the book. Multiple interviews with key witnesses. One person I interviewed nine times, and the transcripts of those conversations are seven or eight hundred pages. Seven or eight hundred pages for one person?

Yes, sir. How many people did you interview? Oh, over a hundred. I would say that maybe half of those are key people. The theme of Woodward's book that aides fear what the president might do if allowed to follow his impulses received an unusual confirmation last week when the New York Times published this anonymous article written by a person described as a senior official in the Trump administration.

I work for the president, but like-minded colleagues and I have vowed to thwart parts of his agenda and his worst inclinations. I have no idea who it is. It's very important who it is. It's very important whether this is somebody who witnessed and participated.

And quite frankly, if there was a person in the White House or the administration who wanted to tell me what's in that op-ed piece, I would say, OK, name me who was there. What is the specific incident? As you know from having read my book, there are dates and times and participants.

I wouldn't have used it. Too vague? Well, too vague and does not meet the standards of trying to describe specific incidents. Specific incidents are the building blocks of journalism, as you well know. Fear Trump in the White House is Woodward's 19th book, and he says reporting it took him deeper inside a working White House than he's ever been before. This one was in the belly of the beast. And what did you conclude about the beast?

That people better wake up to what's going on. And now a milepost by which to remember the past week, the disastrous fire at the National Museum of Brazil in Rio de Janeiro. Housed in a former royal palace, the museum was a treasure trove of Western hemisphere history, home to some 20 million artifacts, among them an 11,000-year-old skull of a woman nicknamed Luthia, masks and pottery of ancient indigenous tribes, huge collections of insects and other animal life, among many, many others. Museum officials believe as much as 90 percent of the museum's collection has been destroyed. As staff members tried to assess the damage, the recriminations flew. Under-financed and understaffed for years, the museum building suffered from widespread disrepair and had virtually no fire protection systems. Across Brazil, critics are blaming the museum's destruction on a wider civil culture of corruption, budget cutting and official neglect. Over time, the true cause of the calamity may yet be found.

Replacements for most of the lost exhibits will not. I'm Jane Pauley. Please join us when our trumpet sounds again next Sunday morning. George is right up there, but New Hampshire is a surprise in New Hampshire. People really just kind of don't like Maggie has for more from this week's conversation. Follow the Takeout with Major Garrett on Apple Podcasts or wherever you get your podcasts.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-01-26 23:15:42 / 2023-01-26 23:23:51 / 8

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