Democracy Now! - December 9, 2015

Broadcasting from Paris, France, Democracy Now! travels an hour and a half north of the city to Calais, site of the largest refugee camp in the country. Six to seven thousand people are camped out in makeshift tents. Their goal is to reach Britain, and each night members of the camp set out along the highway to the Channel Tunnel, where they attempt to cross into Britain by jumping on top of or inside trucks or lorries. We meet Majd, a 21-year-old Syrian man, one of thousands stranded in the the camp. He describes how a Sudanese man named Joseph was recently killed when he was run over by a car on the highway. On Saturday, camp residents protested that the police hadn’t stopped the driver, and held signs reading "We are Humans, Not Dogs" and "What Do the Survivors of War Have to Do to Live in Peace?" This comes as the world faces the greatest exodus of people since World War II. On Monday, the United Nations appealed for $20 billion in additional aid money, saying that at present funding levels the U.N. is "not able to provide even the very minimum in core protection and lifesaving assistance." U.N. officials cited the wars in Syria, Afghanistan, Iraq, Yemen and South Sudan as one of the major reasons there are nearly 60 million people forcibly displaced worldwide. The largest single displaced community is Syrians, with 4 million refugees forced outside Syria’s borders by the ongoing conflict.

Residents of the largest refugee camp in France, situated outside the northern port city of Calais, often call it "The Jungle." It is a maze of wind-swept, ripped tents and muddy walkways where people informally live in sections according to their home countries. Walking through the camp is like walking through a map of the targets of U.S. bombing campaigns: Iraq, Syria, Sudan and, of course, Afghanistan. By far the largest community in the camp is Afghans who fled the 14-year-old U.S. war in Afghanistan. Democracy Now! visits the Afghan section, where people recount living through the longest war in U.S. history, which President Obama indefinitely extended this past fall.

Climate activists in Paris are planning a major day of action on Saturday despite a ban on protests put in place by the French government after the Nov. 13 attacks that killed 130 people. "By taking to the streets, we will be clearly and unequivocally rejecting the Hollande government’s draconian and opportunistic ban on marches, protests and demonstrators," says Naomi Klein, author of "This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. The Climate." We feature part of a major address by Klein at the U.N. climate summit.

Secretary of State John Kerry delivered a major speech Wednesday at the U.N. climate summit, promising the United States would double its climate aid to $800 million a year by 2020 to help poorer nations prepare for the impact of climate change. Meanwhile, The Guardian has revealed that the United States, European nations and 79 African, Caribbean and Pacific countries have joined together to form a new negotiating bloc. The group, which U.S. chief negotiator Todd Stern has dubbed "the high ambition coalition," reportedly first met in secret six months ago and does not include China or India. We speak with Bangladeshi climate scientist Saleemul Huq of the International Institute for Environment and Development in London and the International Center for Climate Change and Development in Bangladesh for more on the talks.

Click the link to continue watching full episodes of Democracy Now! https://freespeech.org/collection/democracy-now.

Amy Goodman Climate Democracy Now! economics Naomi Klein Syria

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