Col. Morris Davis, the former chief prosecutor at Guantanamo, talks about his mission to close the facility.
French artist JR wants to help democratize art.
In the video above, JR tells Christiane Amanpour how his latest project, Inside Out, allows participants around the world to create street art out of photographs of ordinary people.
A documentary on JR, "Inside Out: The People's Art Project," premieres May 20th on HBO.
By Mick Krever, CNN
In a country with an ayatollah, it’s nice to be a favorite.
Iran holds presidential elections on June 14, and Saeed Jalili, Iran’s top nuclear negotiator, is hoping to get the top job; he appears to have the support of Ayatollah Khamenei.
The Ayatollah is hoping for a smoother election that in 2009, when the country erupted into protests among allegations that Mahmoud Ahmadinejad had won the election fraudulently.
Scores of reformists and activists have been arrested ahead of next month’s vote, but it the last-minute entry of two more major candidates that may have the biggest effect on the race.
By Mick Krever & Juliet Fuisz, CNN
Moazzam Begg was taken from his home in the middle of the night.
He would not see freedom for more than three years. His captor was the United States Government. He was taken from his home in Pakistan to Bagram Air Force Base in Afghanistan; soon, he found himself thousands of miles away, at Guantanamo Bay Prison in the Caribbean Sea.
The Americans accused Begg, who is a dual Pakistani-British citizen, with aiding the Taliban and al Qaeda. He denied the charges, and was never formally charged or prosecuted.
He spent three years at Guantanamo – two in solitary confinement – before the British government successfully lobbied for his release.
Will a week of scandal stymie U.S. President Barack Obama’s second-term agenda?
In the video above, Christiane Amanpour examines the issue with CNN Senior Legal Analyst Jeffrey Toobin.
By Christiane Amanpour, CNN
Dear Girls of the World,
There are more than 7 billion people in the world. Half of them are women and girls.
Just imagine the whole world rising, as it will, when all women and girls are empowered.
It has to start with education. All the number crunchers have it right on this one: education = empowerment, from here in the United States to Uruguay and Ulan Bator.
The United Nations, the World Bank and any organization you can think of say that an educated girl is a girl who can get a job, become a breadwinner and raise herself, her family, her village, her community and eventually her whole country. All the stories and statistics show that a healthy society is one whose women are healthy and productive.
Look at what women and girls are achieving for Rwanda, 19 years after the genocide there. The country leads the way in Africa in every way: education, health, the economy, the environment and in elected politics, powered by the force of its women. It is an amazing story. In contrast, the Arab world, which is so rich in natural resources such as oil and gas, is way behind in all development indicators, because half their populations, their women, are denied basic rights. It's why the Arab Spring must liberate and fully empower women, for the good of those countries.
Did you know that if female employment were to match male employment in the United States, gross domestic product would rise by 5%. And in developing countries that figure soars by double digits - for instance, GDP would rise 34% in Egypt if women and men had equal employment opportunities.
And this is where education comes in. According to a 2004 report co-authored by Gene Sperling (now a senior economic aide to President Barack Obama), a woman can expect a 10% to 20% rise in earning power with every additional year of primary education beyond average. Another economist, Paul Schultz, found that number increased to 15% to 25% higher earning power with each additional year of secondary school.
So educate our girls if you want to reduce infant mortality, stabilize population growth and reduce cases of HIV/AIDS.
In rural areas, the United Nations says wages, agriculture income and productivity all improve when the female workers are educated.
It is time to end the discrimination against girls in education. According to the U.N., around 35 million girls are not enrolled in primary school and that has to end.
Almost 800 million people worldwide are illiterate; two-thirds of them are women and girls. Imagine a world where they could actually read and write and do basic math for accounting - that is how the world will change. Women are much more likely than men to use their earnings for the good of the family, rather than spending it on alcohol or other things for themselves.
Just ask the great microfinance pioneer Muhammad Yunus of Bangladesh's Grameen Bank - women are the best bet. You lend them a little, and they pay back in spades. He has known this for 30 years.
It's high time the rest of the world caught on. Go girls! Power the world! We can do it.
By Mick Krever, CNN
It’s a Cold-War story with a touch of Monty Python.
An American man, wearing a blond wig and sunglasses, was detained by the Russian security service on Tuesday and accused of being a spy.
Among his possessions was a piece of paper – an open letter allegedly intended for a member of Russian intelligence – pledging $100,000 for “experience, expertise and cooperation.”
How should they get in touch? “A new Gmail account.”
It all seems a bit unbelievable; but a consummate Russian insider, Alexei Pushkov, told CNN’s Christiane Amanpour on Wednesday that the story is self evident.
“The American embassy did not protest, it did not deny anything, and we did not hear any denial from the State Department neither,” he told her. “An American spy who was working under the cover of a diplomat was caught red-handed.”
Ethan Chorin was in Benghazi, Libya on the day that American Ambassador Christopher Stevens was killed.
In fact, he was due to meet with him the next day.
In the video above, Chorin breaks down American policy mistakes in Libya after the fall of Gadhafi.
Father Thomas Rosica speaks with CNN's Christiane Amanpour about the new directions Pope Francis is taking the Catholic Church.
By Mick Krever, CNN
Hearing Colonel Morris Davis speak, it’s easy to forget that he used to be the chief prosecutor at Guantanamo Bay.
“We used to be the land of the free and the home of the brave; we’ve been the constrained and the cowardly,” he told CNN’s Christiane Amanpour on Tuesday.
President Obama promised to close the Guantanamo detention facility when he took office in 2009; four years later, it’s still open.
A majority of the detainees, over 100, have been on hunger strike for more than three months to protest their detention; the military has resorted to force feeding them.
Eighty six of the detainees, Davis said, have never been charged with a crime. Many of those who were convicted of crimes were sent back to their home countries, and many are now free.
“It’s a bizarre, perverted system of justice,” he said, “where being convicted of a war crime is your ticket home, and if you’re never charged, much less convicted, you spend the rest of your life sitting at Guantanamo.”
A scant six years ago, as chief prosecutor at Guantanamo under President Bush, Colonel Davis sounded like a true believer.
Pope Francis has a 13th-century name, but thanks to a Chicago man, he has a 21st-century domain.
Christiane Amanpour explains in the video above.