TONIGHT ON METROFOCUS

Could the city’s plan to rehabilitate the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway actually lead to a major health hazard for residents of Brooklyn Heights?  We have the disturbing details on a recent report. Seniors statewide are being preyed upon by criminals attempting to steal their hard earned savings. We’ve got the information to keep you and your loved ones safe. A shortage of detectives in Long Island’s Nassau County has many concerned in the wake of gang violence. We’re looking at the problem and searching for a solution. Six of the deadliest dictators of the 20th century are examined in a new PBS mini-series.  We have your preview.

Aired on January 8, 2019 and July 26, 2019.

TRANSCRIPT

> TONIGHT ON METROFOCUS, IS A CURE FOR CONGESTION A PRESCRIPTION THAT WILL MAKE NEW YORKERS ILL?

ATTENTION TURNS TO THE BQE.

BUT COULD THE CURRENT PLANS TO REHAB THE HIGHWAY ACTUALLY LEAD TO A TOXIC HEALTH HAZARD FOR RESIDENTS OF BROOKLYN HEIGHTS?

WE HAVE DETAILS OF A RECENT AND TROUBLING REPORT.

> FOREWARNED IS FOREARMED.

SENIORS STATEWIDE ARE BEING PREYED UPON BY CRIMINALS WE SHARE INFORMATION ON THE TOP SCAMS AFFECTING OUR RELATIVES, NEIGHBORS, AND OURSELVES.

> LONG ISLAND NEEDS DETECTIVES.

WORKING MORE WITH LESS OFTEN WITH MOUNTING CASE LOADS.

A DANGER THE CITIZENS OF NASSAU COUNTY FACING A DEADLY GANG PROBLEM.

IN A MOMENT, A LOOK AT THE PROBLEM AND A POSSIBLE SOLUTION FROM THE HEAD OF THE NASSAU COUNTY DETECTIVE'S UNION.

> AND KIM ILL SUNG, FRANCO, AND EDME, VERY DIFFERENT DICTATORS OF THE 20th CENTURY.

AHEAD, A PREVIEW OF AN UPCOMING PBS SERIES THAT LOOKS AT WHAT GOT THESE MEN TO SEEK POWER AND RULE AND ULTIMATE END.

THOSE STORIES AND MORE AS 'METROFOCUS' STARTS RIGHT NOW.

.

> GOOD EVENING AND WELCOME TO 'METROFOCUS.'

A 1.5 MILE STRETCH OF THE BROOKLYN QUEENS EXPRESSWAY WHICH INCLUDES THE AREA BENEATH THE BRO BROOKLYN PROMINAD NEEDS RENOVATIONS.

THE DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION PLANS TO OVERHAUL THIS SECTION AND COULD BRING EXTREMELY DANGEROUS LEVELS OF TOXIC POLLUTION TO BROOKLYN HEIGHTS.

WHAT IS THE LEVEL OF THARM WOULD BE INFLICTED ON THE RESIDENTS OF BROOKLYN HEIGHTS AS THE RENOVATIONS CONTINUE AS PLANNED AND IS THERE IN WAY TO FIX THE BQE WITHOUT THE RESULTING HEALTH HAZARDS?

JOINING US NO YOU TO HELP ANSWER THE QUESTIONS IS MARY FROST FOR THE BROOKLYN DAILY EEG WHICH WILL HAS BEEN COVERING THIS STORY.

MARY, WELCOME TO THE PROGRAM.

THANK YOU.

I SHOULD SAY, YOU'VE NOT ONLY BEEN COVERING THIS STORY, YOU BROKE THIS STORY.

WE DID BREAK THIS ASPECT OF THE STORY.

IT CAME OUT OF THE BLUE.

IT WAS POINTED OUT TO US BY LORI GARRETT, A VERY ESTEEMED MEMBER OF THE ENVIRONMENTAL JOURNALISM AREA.

SHE'S AN AWARD WINNER.

13 YEARS HEAD OF THE COUNCIL ON FOREIGN RELATIONS GLOBAL HEALTH COMMITTEE.

SHE BROUGHT IT TO OUR ATTENTION.

SHE GETS FULL CREDIT ON THAT.

THE BQE RENOVATIONS, WHY ARE THEY NEEDED AND HOW EXTENSIVE WILL THEY BE?

THEY'RE NEEDED BECAUSE THE BQE IS VERY OLD H IT WAS BUILT DURING ROBERT MOSES TIME, LATE 40s.

THE DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION TOOK REPORTERS INSIDE THE ACTUAL STRUCTURE.

WE SAW SUNLIGHT COMING THROUGH.

IF IT IS NOT REPAIRED BY 2026, ALL THE TRUCKS AND ALL -- WILL HAVE TO BE TAKEN AND ROUTED THROUGH LOCAL STREETS AND IF IT'S NOT REPAIRED BY 2036, THE WHOLE THING JUST HAS TO COME DOWN.

WOW SO NOW TALK ABOUT THE HEALTH HAZARD.

WHAT WOULD CAUSE SUCH A DEVASTATING HEALTH HAZARD TO THE PEOPLE OF BROOKLYN HEIGHTS?

PEOPLE FOLLOWING THIS MAY KNOW THE DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION HAD TWO PLANS THEY WERE LOOKING AT.

ONE PLAN, THE ONE THEY SEEM TO BE GOING WITH, WILL HAVE SIX LANES OF THE BQE RUNNING ON TOP OF THE BROOKLYN HEIGHTS PROMINAD WHICH IS A WORLD FAMOUS SCENIC POMINAD, THE HEART OF BROOKLYN HEIGHTS.

AND IT WOULD BRING TO GROUND LEVEL SIX LANES OF VERY AND DANGEROUS TRAFFIC POLLUTION WHICH HAS BEEN UP TO THIS POINT CONSTRAINED BY THE PROMINAD ITSELF.

IT'S AN UNBELIEVABLE PLAN REALLY.

IT WILL BE ESSENTIALLY LIKE PUTTING A COAL FIRED PLANT IN THE MIDDLE OF A VERY SMALL NEIGHBORHOOD WITH DEVASTATING HEALTH CONCERNS.

BUT THERE'S A PARTICULAR CULPRIT INVOLVED, PM 2.5.

EXPLAIN WHAT THAT IS.

PM 2.5 IS A PARTICLE THAT IS SO SMALL THAT IT CANNOT BE SEEN.

IF YOU'RE STANDING ON THE PROMINAD BREATHING IN THE FRESH AIR AND REALLY VERY TOXIC PARTICLES WILL BE GOING INTO YOUR BODY.

IT'S SO SMALL THAT IT'S LIKE LITTLE TOXIC GOLD FISH GOING THROUGH A NET.

IT GOES THROUGH THE LUNGS.

IT GOES RIGHT INTO THE BLOODSTREAM, CAUSING INFLAMMATION AND HAS BEEN KNOWN -- IT'S TIED TO HEART DISEASE, OF COURSE RESPIRATORY PROBLEMS, A STUDY DONE BY LUNAR MEDICAL CENTER WHICH IS NOW NYU FOUND ANYONE LIVING ALONG THE BQE THERE IS A MUCH HIGHER RATE OF HOSPITALIZATIONS FOR ASTHMA.

BUT NOW BRAND NEW STUDY SHOWS THAT EVEN LOW LEVELS OF PM 2.5 ARE LINKED TO HEALTH CONCERNS, ESPECIALLY NOW, NEW THINGS, DIABETES ODDLY ENOUGH.

IT'S ALREADY SPREADING OUT.

YOU HAVE A MAP.

IN YOUR ORIGINAL ARTICLE, YOU HAVE A MAP OF PM 2.5, HOW IT IS SPREAD OUT THROUGH NEW YORK.

AND YOU SEE THAT IT'S -- THAT LEVELS OF PM 2.5 ARE SPREAD OUT ALL OVER MANHATTAN.

YES.

AND CERTAINLY ALL AROUND THE BQE ALREADY.

YEAH.

SO WHAT WOULD MAKE THE PEOPLE OF BROOKLYN HEIGHTS MORE SUSCEPTIBLE TO THIS THAN NEW YORKERS ALREADY ARE THAT ARE CLOSE TO THE BQE?

NEW YORKERS ARE IN BAD SHAPE.

BROOKLYN HEIGHTS IS PARTICULARLY SUSCEPTIBLE BECAUSE IT'S A RECTANGULAR SMALL NEIGHBORHOOD SURROUNDED ON TWO SIDES BY THE BQE AND THERE IS ALREADY A VERY HIGH LEVEL OF HEALTH EFFECTS COMING FROM THIS.

BUT IT IS -- HAS BEEN CONTAINED TO A CERTAIN AMOUNT BY THE OVERHANG OF THE PROMINAD.

AND IN EFFECT, THE WINDS KIND OF SHIFTED AROUND AND AWAY FROM THE NEIGHBORHOOD.

THE NEIGHBORHOOD ALREADY IS SUFFERING HEALTH EFFECTS.

PUTTING THIS ACTUALLY -- THE DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION HAS A GREAT VIDEO SHOWING WHAT THEY PLANNED IS THIS HIGHWAY INCHES AWAY FROM WINDOWS, AIR CONDITIONER VENTS AND DUCTS.

QUICKLY, IS THERE A VIABLE ALTERNATIVE TO THE DOT'S CURRENT PLANS THAT WOULDN'T CAUSE THIS HEALTH HAZARD?

THERE IS ONE PROMISING ONE THAT IS PUT FORWARD BY THE BROOKLYN HEIGHTS ASSOCIATION.

THERE ARE TWO FWRUPZ.

TH GROUPS.

INSTEAD OF RUNNING THE HIGHWAY ALONG THE PROMINAD, IT WOULD PUT IT DOWN ON GROUND LEVEL BROOKLYN HEIGHTS IS UP HIGH.

SO WE'RE TALKING ABOUT ON THE EDGE OF THE BROOKLYN BRIDGE PARK AND FUHRMAN STREET.

IT WOULD RUN IT ALONG THE EASTERN EDGE OF BROOKLYN EDGE PARK.

SO WHAT IS THE CHANCE THIS WILL BE ADOPTED?

THE DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION AND THE COMMISSIONERS SAY THEY'RE LOOKING AT THE PLAN.

THEY HAVE NO TIME LINE.

THEY MADE NO PROMISES.

THEY SAY IT IS UNDER CONSIDERATION.

WHEN WILL THE RENOVATIONS BEGIN?

WELL, THERE'S A LOT TO BE DONE FIRST.

SOME OF THE NUMBERS HAVE BEEN THROWN UP ARE 2020.

THIS WHOLE PLAN HAS NEVER BEEN REVIEWED ONCE.

SO IT HAS TO GO THROUGH.

SO A POSSIBILITY THAT ALTERNATIVES WILL BE --

ALTERNATIVES COULD BE CONSIDERED, YEAH.

ALL RIGHT.

WELL, LET'S SEE WHAT HAPPENS, MARY.

WE'LL HAVE YOU BACK WHEN THOSE PLANS ARE IN SIGHT.

THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR JOINING US.

THANK YOU.

TN .

> SCAMS AGAINST THE ELDERLY HAVE SKYROCKETED IN THIS COUNTRY WITH SENIORS LOSING AT LEAST $3 BILLION EVERY YEAR TO CON ARTISTS.

IN FACT, FINANCIAL SCAMS TARGETING SENIORS HAVE BECOME SO PREVALENT THAT THEY HAVE BEEN LABELLED THE CRIME OF THE 21st CENTURY.

BUT WHAT MAKES SENIORS SO VULNERABLE TO THE CRIMES?

HOW EXACTLY ARE THEY BEING CONNED?

AND WHAT CAN SENIORS DO TO PROTECT THEMSELVES FROM SCAMMERS?

JOINING US NOW WITH ANSWERS TO THESE QUESTIONS IS BETH, STATE DIRECTOR OF AARP NEW YORK.

BETH, WELCOME TO THE PROGRAM.

THANK YOU.

SO WHAT DOES MAKE SENIORS SO VULNERABLE TO THE CRIMES?

WELL, YOU KNOW, OLDER ADULTS, WE'RE BORN IN DIFFERENT CENTURY.

RIGHT?

AND THEY WERE RAISED IN A DIFFERENT WAY.

THEY WERE RAISED TO BE VERY POLITE.

THEY WERE RAISED TO BE HOSPITALABILITY AND GRACIOUS.

AND THAT'S EXACTLY WHAT MAKES THEM VULNERABLE BECAUSE THEY DON'T HANG UP THE PHONE.

IF SOMEONE CALLS THEM, THEY DON'T WANT TO BE IMPOLITE AND JUST HANG UP ON THEM.

SO THEY'RE AT HOME.

NOBODY IS CALLING THEM ON THE PHONE.

THEY'RE WATCHING TV.

THEY DON'T GET OUT AS MUCH.

AND SOMEONE CALLS WITH A VERY SWEET PLEASANT VOICE.

SCAM ARTISTS, THEY KNOW HOW TO TALK TO THE VULNERABLE, RIGHT?

LET'S GO OVER SOME OF THE SCAMS.

THE ABSOLUTELY RIGHT NOW, WE'RE GOING TO COME PICK YOU UP AND THROW YOU IN JAIL.

COMMON SENSE WOULD TELL YOU THE IRS IS NOT GOING TO COME AND THROW YOU IN JAIL TOMORROW.

AND THEY'RE NOT GOING TO CALL YOU.

THEY'RE GOING TO SEND YOU A LETTER.

IF GOD FORBID YOU ARE BEHIND, YOU HAVEN'T PAID YOUR TAXES, THEY WILL SEND YOU A LETTER FIRST.

IF YOU GET A CALL LIKE THAT, HANG UP.

PICK UP THE PHONE AND CALL THE IRS.

AND CHECK TO SEE IF, IN FACT, YOU'RE IN ARREARS IN ANY WAY.

BY THE WAY, IS THERE ANY GOVERNMENT AGENCY THAT WOULD CALL YOU UP AND ASK FOR MONEY?

NOT LIKELY.

OKAY.

SO GIVE ME ANOTHER ONE.

THE TECH ONE.

MIGHT BE SOMEONE MAKING BELIEVE THEY'RE COMING FROM MICROSOFT OR ANOTHER BIG COMPANY LIKE THAT.

SAYING WE THINK THAT THERE IS A VIRUS ON YOUR COMPUTER.

AND WE NEED YOU TO GIVE US ACCESS TO YOUR COMPUTER RIGHT NOW AND GIVE US A CREDIT CARD NUMBER OVER THE PHONE SO WE CAN GET INTO YOUR COMPUTER AND SOLVE THIS PROBLEM FOR YOU.

ANOTHER ONE I THINK YOU HEARD IS THE GRANDPARENTING ONE.

OH, YEAH.

THEY CALL YOU UP.

I HEAR ABOUT IT.

I READ ABOUT IT.

IT BROKE MY HEART.

TELL PEOPLE ABOUT THAT.

YOU GET A PHONE CALL.

THIS IS YOUR GRANDSON WILL.

AND I'M STUCK IN LONDON.

AND I NEED MONEY RIGHT AWAY BECAUSE I GOT ROBBED IN UTAH AND GRANDMA HELP ME GET HOME.

RIGHT?

AGAIN, COMMON SENSE, HANG UP THE PHONE.

CALL YOUR GRANDSON.

RIGHT.

ASIDE FROM THE PHONE, THE INTERNET, RIGHT?

WHEN YOU GET E-MAILS.

YOU GET AN E-MAIL THAT SAYS CLICK IN HERE.

YOU KNOW, WITH AMAZON OR GOOGLE OR SOMETHING, YOU KNOW, OR YOUR BANKS NAME.

IT'S VERY AUTHORITATIVE, RIGHT?

YOU BELIEVE IT.

IT SAYS LINK HERE FOR INFORMATION.

PEOPLE TEND TO DO THAT.

AND THEY'LL DO IT.

DON'T DO IT.

IN E-MAILS, YOU CAN SEE IF IT'S AN HTTP BEFORE YOU CLICK THROUGH.

YOU KNOW, THAT'S HOW YOU KNOW THAT THERE IS MORE SAFETY IN THE E-MAIL THAT'S ARE COMING IN.

THERE IS THE GIFT CARD.

I THINK AN IMPORTANT ONE FOR PEOPLE TO BE AWARE OF.

YOU GO INTO A LOCAL SHOP AND THERE IS A RACK OF CARDS.

AND THOSE CARDS COULD HAVE BEEN TAMPERED WITH.

THEY COULD HAVE BEEN OPENED IN ADVANCE AND THEN RESEALED.

WHEN THEY OPEN THEM IN ADVANCE, THEY GET THE PIN NUMBER AND THE NUMBER ON IT.

AND WHEN YOU GO AND BUY IT, ALL OF A SUDDEN IT GETS ACTIVATED.

AND EVEN BEFORE YOU HAD A CHANCE TO USE IT OR GIVE IT TO SOMEBODY ELSE, THAT SCAMMER HAS ALREADY ARE EMPTIED OUT THAT GIFT CARD OF MONEY.

SO IT'S REALLY IMPORTANT THAT WHEN IT COMES TO BUYING GIFT CARDS, NUMBER ONE, CHECK TO SEE IF THE PACKAGING LOOKS TAMPERED WITH.

BUT IT'S BETTER TO BUY IT FROM THE CASHIER ITSELF OR THE RETAILER ITSELF.

THEN YOU KNOW YOU'RE SAFER.

ANYTHING ELSE THAT SENIORS SHOULD DO TO MAKE SURE THEY'RE PROTECTING THEMSELVES FROM SCAMS?

A LITTLE BIT MORE SKEPTICISM AND CYNICISM.

THAT'S VERY HEALTHY.

AND PEOPLE CAN BE VERY TRUSTING.

AND THEY'RE BANKING ON YOU BEING TRUSTING.

HOW CAN THE FAMILY MEMBERS HELP MAKE SURE THAT THEIR PARENTS OR GRABNDPARENTSES ARE BEING SCAMMED?

HAVE THE CONVERSATION.

THAT'S FIRST THING YOU NEED TO DO.

HAVE THE CONVERSATION WITH YOUR LOVES ONES.

SAY, YOU KNOW, I READ ABOUT THIS RECENTLY.

I HEARD THIS IS GOING AROUND.

OR THIS HAPPENED TO A FRIEND OF MINE.

AND THEN JUST KIND OF GO THROUGH SOME OF THE POINTERS THAT WE JUST DISCUSS SODED SO PEOPLE CA PREARMED AND ALSO TELL THEM, DON'T BE EMBARRASSED ABOUT IT.

IF SOMEONE -- IF YOU THINK YOU'VE BEEN SCAMMED, LET ME KNOW.

THERE ARE ACTIONS WE CAN TAKE.

YOU CAN CALL THE IRS.

YOU CAN CALL THE UTILITY COMPANY, YOU KNOW, YOU CAN CALL ANY NUMBER OF PLACES.

AND FINALLY, I WOULD SAY AARP HAS GOT A GREAT WEBSITE.

IT'S AARP.ORG/FRAUDWATCHNETWORK.

ON THAT SITE YOU CAN REGISTER AND WE'LL SEND YOU ALERTS OF WHEN THERE ARE DIFFERENT SCAMS GOING ON IN YOUR ZIP CODE IN YOUR COMMUNITY.

SO THAT'S ALSO A REALLY GOOD WAY TO GO.

AND YOU CAN GO IN AND MENTION WHAT HAPPENED TO YOU.

AND WE WOULD LOVE TO HEAR THAT TOO.

ALL RIGHT.

THANK YOU SO MUCH.

THIS IS SO IMPORTANT.

SUCH A AWFUL CRIME.

I'M SO GLAD YOU CAME HERE TO TALK TO US ABOUT IT.

THANK YOU FOR HAVING ME.

FOR MORE INFORMATION AN HOW TO AVOID THE SCAMS, VISIT OUR WEBSITE AT METROFOCUS.ORG.

THE NASSAU COUNTY DEBLGTIVES UNION IS RAISING SERIOUS CONCERNS ABOUT A DETECTIVE SHORTAGE.

ACCORDING TO THE PRESIDENT OF THE NASSAU COUNTY DETECTIVES ASSOCIATION, THE DIVISION IS CURRENTLY 45 DETECTIVES SHORT OF THE NUMBER OF BUDGETED FOR THE COUNTY AND ACCORDING TO HIM THAT, SHORTAGE MADE IT MUCH MORE DIFFICULT FOR THE DEPARTMENT TO COMBAT THE GROWING GANG VIOLENCE FROM GROUPS SUCH AS THE LETHAL MS 13.

SO WHY IS THERE SUCH A SIGNIFICANT SHORTAGE OF THE DETECTIVES IN THE NASSAU COUNTY POLICE DEPARTMENT?

AND HOW CAN THE PROBLEM BE FIXED?

JOINING US NOW TO HELP ANSWER THOSE QUESTIONS IS DETECTIVE JOHN WIGHOUSE.

THANK YOU FOR JOINING US.

THANK YOU FOR HAVING ME TODAY.

SO FIRST OF ALL, DETECTIVE, WHY IS THERE THIS SHORTAGE OF DETECTIVES IN NASSAU COUNTY?

RIGHT NOW, THERE SAY LACK OF INTEREST IN POLICE OFFICERS SUBMITTING LETTERS TO BECOME THE DETECTIVES FOR SEVERAL REASONS.

ONE OF THEM BEING THE RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE DETECTIVES.

OUR POLICE OFFICERS IN NASSAU COUNTY DO A GREAT JOB.

ONCE THE DETECTIVE GETS THERE, WE'RE INTERVIEWING WITNESSES, VICTIMS, WE ALSO HAVE TO MAKE A CASE AGAINST THE SUBJECT AND SEE THAT CASE THROUGHOUT A SUCCESSFUL PROSECUTION IN COURT.

THERE IS ALSO ISSUES OF OUR STEPS IN BECOMING A DETECTIVE.

IF YOU'RE A POLICE OFFICER, IT'S EIGHT STEPS TO TOP PAY.

IF YOU MAKE THE DETECTIVE, THEN YOU'RE THIRD TIER.

YOU HAVE TO COMPLETE YOUR PBA STEPS WORKING AS A DETECTIVE AND THEN ONCE YOU COMPLETE THOSE STEPS, THEN CANYOU CAN GET PAID THE DETECTIVE.

SO IT'S ESSENTIALLY, THERE IS NOT ECONOMIC INCENTIVES FOR THEM TO TAKE ON THE GREATER RESPONSIBILITY.

INITIALLY IT'S A $2400 RAISE BUT STAYING IN YOUR POLICE OFFICER STEPS AS WELL.

ALL RIGHT.

SO ELABORATE ON WHAT I SAID IN THE INTRODUCTION.

WHAT DO YOU BELIEVE ARE THE CONSEQUENCES OR THE POTENTIAL CONSEQUENCES OF THIS DETECTIVE SHORTAGE?

IT'S A PUBLIC SAFETY CRISIS.

WE'RE SEEING IT WITH THE GANG MS 13 NOW.

WE'RE DIGGING UP BODIES IN NASSAU COUNTY OF VICTIMS FROM THIS GANG.

THERE ALSO HAVE OTHER BODIES OUT THERE THAT WE KNOW ABOUT IN THESE PRESERVES AND PARKS IN NASSAU THAT WE HAVEN'T RECOVERED YET.

WE'RE DOWN TO SEVEN DETECTIVES IN OUR GANG INVESTIGATION SQUAD.

HOW MANY SHOULD YOU HAVE?

WE SHOULD HAVE 20 DETECTIVES IN THERE.

ALL OUR SQUADS ARE SHORT.

THE SPECIAL SQUADS ARE SHORT.

AND IT'S MAKING CRIME INCREASE?

WELL, YOU SEE WHAT THE GANG VIOLENCE THAT'S OUT THERE AND EVEN NARCOTICS WE'RE DOWN TO 29 DETECTIVES IN NARCOTICS.

THE REASON SKII ASK THAT IS BECAUSE LAST NIGHT I WAS LOOKING AT NASSAU COUNTY CRIME STATISTICS AND THE CRIME AT LEAST ON PAPER HAS BEEN PLUMMETING.

I SAW -- I WAS LOOKING AT THE CRIME STATS FROM 2006 TO 2017.

IT'S BEEN PLUMMETING.

IT'S BEEN GOING DOWN AND MURDER RATE, ROBBERY, MOTORCYCLE THEFT, SAME THING IS HAPPENING IN 2018.

SO HOW DO YOU EXPLAIN THAT?

WELL, NUMBER ONE, IT'S THE GOOD WORK THAT THE POLICE OFFICERS ARE DOING.

YEAH, YOU'RE GETTING THE JOB DONE ANYWAY.

BUT OVERDOSES.

OVERDOSE VICTIMS ARE NOT A CRIME STATISTIC.

THEY SHOULD BE A CRIME STATISTIC BECAUSE IT'S BECAUSE OF DRUGS, OKAY?

SO TELL THOSE FAMILIES THAT THEY'RE NOT A CRIME STATISTIC.

THEY'RE BEING TORN APART.

YOU KNOW, THESE FAMILIES OF THESE OPIOID EPIDEMIC.

AND AGAIN, YOU KNOW, WE'RE DOWN IN 1998, WE HAD 70 DETECTIVES IN NARCOTICS.

NOW WE'RE DOWN TO 29.

AND YOU HAVE TO GO OUT PRO ACTIVELY.

WHEN THERE IS A DRUG DEAL GOING ON, A BUYER AND SELLER, NOBODY IS CALLING THE COPS.

SO THAT CRIME GOES UNREPORTED.

SO THAT'S NOT A STATISTIC.

YEAH.

YOU KNOW, NASSAU COUNTY DISTRICT ATTORNEY CALLED NASSAU COUNTY THE SAFEST LARGEST COUNTY IN THE WHOLE STATE.

IS SHE RIGHT?

IT IS A SAFE CITY.

BUT WE DO HAVE SIGNIFICANT ISSUES WITH MS 13.

ONE KILLING IS TOO MANY.

RIGHT.

SO WHAT DOES POLICE COMMISSIONER PATRICK RIDER SAY ABOUT THE SITUATION?

COMMISSIONER IS ON OUR SIDE.

HE AGREES WITH THE FACT THAT WE DO NEED MORE DETECTIVES.

WE ARE PRO ACTIVE LEADERS TO THE DETECTIVE ASSOCIATION GOING OUT TO TALK TO POLICE OFFICERS AND COMMISSIONER RIDER IS DOING THE SAME THING TO TRY TO ATTRACT THE POLICE OFFICERS INTO BECOMING DETECTIVES.

HE'S ON OUR SIDE.

IF WE HAD THE SUBMISSIONS OF POLICE OFFICERS, HE WOULD MAKE THEM DETECTIVES.

AND WHAT ABOUT NASSAU COUNTY EXECUTIVE LAURA CURRENT?

SHE ULTIMATELY RESPONSIBLE, RIGHT?

SO WHAT IS SHE SAYING WHEN YOU TALK TO HER ABOUT THIS?

SHE AGREES.

WITH HE TOLD HER THE ISSUES.

SHE AGREES WE NEED MORE DETECTIVES AND HAS TO GO THROUGH COLLECTIVE BARGAINING.

RIGHT NOW WE'RE A YEAR WITHOUT A CONTRACT.

SHE SAYS WE HAVE TO DO IT THROUGH COLLECTIVE BARGAINING.

WE'RE READY TO GO.

WE NEED TO SIT DOWN.

SO SHE DOESN'T SEE THE URGENCY IN THE SITUATION LIKE DO YOU?

SHE SEES IT.

BUT SHE HAS TO ACT ON IT.

WE USED TO HAVE SUBMISSIONS OF 30 PEOPLE IN EVERY PRESINCT TO BE DETECTIVE NOW WE'RE GETTING FIVE FOR THE WHOLE COUNTY.

WE HAVE SIX AND EIGHT PRESINCT OPENING UP.

THEY WERE CLOSED SEVERAL YEARS AGO.

THE COMMUNITY SHOULD HAVE THEM REOPENED.

WE DON'T HAVE ENOUGH DETECTIVES TO PUT IN THOSE TWO SPOTS.

SO THEY'RE GOING TO BE REOPENED WITHOUT DETECTIVES.

WOW.

YOU NO HE?

SO WHAT IS YOUR THINKING?

ARE YOU OPTIMISTIC ABOUT THE POSSIBILITY OF THIS PROBLEM WILL BE RESOLVED SOON?

I AM OPTIMISTIC.

AND I'M LOOKING FORWARD TO SITTING DOWN WITH THE COUNTY EXECUTIVE AND START COLLECTIVE BARGAINING SO WE CAN RESOLVE THIS ISSUE AND GET THE DETECTIVE DIVISION BACK TO WRIT BELONGS.

ALL RIGHT.

THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR JOINING US.

THANK YOU FOR HAVING ME.

> SUNG, HUSSEIN, NORIEGA, FRANCO AND ANOTHER DICTATOR HELPED SHAPE THE WORLD WITH RUTHLESS UNCHECKED POWER KNOWN FOR USING VIOLENCE AND TERROR AS TOOLS TO RULE.

IN A SIX PART HISTORY SERIES FROM PBS CALLED 'THE DICTATORS' PLAYBOOK,' WE LEARN EVERYTHING ABOUT EACH OF THESE MEN FROM THE EARLY LIVES TO THE RISE AND FOR SOME OF THEM THE FALL FROM POWER.

WHAT DROVE THEIR THIRST FOR DOMINATION?

HOW DID THEY SEIZE POWER?

WHO REBELLED AGAINST THEM AND HOW DID SOME OF THEM COME TO A BITTER END?

DICTATORSHIP HAS HAD AN INCREDIBLE IMPACT ON THE PAST CENTURY.

THE DICTATORS ENDED UP LEARNING FROM ONE ANOTHER.

THEY'RE ALL DIFFERENT.

THEY USE THE SAME TACTICS.

THEY USE TERROR.

PROPAGANDA.

CONTROL.

CREATE AN ENEMY.

SANITY.

VIOLENCE.

THESE ARE TOOLS THAT DICTATORS USE TO STAY IN POWER.

JOINING ME NOW TO TALK ABOUT THIS AND PROVIDE INSIGHT TO THE SERIES IS MICHAEL ROSENFELD AND THE CO-EXECUTIVE PRODUCER OF 'THE DICTATOR'S PLAYBOOK.'

NICE TO HAVE YOU WITH US.

PLEASURE TO BE HERE.

SO MY FIRST QUESTION IS THE SELECTION PROCESS.

THE WORLD HAS NOT HAD A SHORTAGE OF DICTATORS.

HOW THEN DID YOU DECIDE TO FOCUS ON THESE SIX?

WELL, I'LL TELL YOU, IT WAS SOMEWHAT CHALLENGING.

BECAUSE AS YOU SAY, THERE WERE SO MANY OF THESE GUYS.

AND THE 20th CENTURY WAS REALLY A CENTURY OF DICTATORS.

I THINK WE EASILY COULD HAVE DONE A 13-PART CLASSIC TELEVISION SERIES.

SO WE HAD TO FIND KIND OF RUBRIC FOR NARROWING IT DOWN.

ONE THING WE DID IS LOOK AT GEOGRAPHY.

WE WANTED TO BE GEOGRAPHICALLY DIVERSE.

WE CHOSE DICTATORS ALL OVER THE PLANET.

FROM EUROPE TO LATIN AMERICA TO ASIA TO THE MIDDLE EAST.

REALLY AS A WAY TO CONVEY HOW WIDESPREAD THIS PHENOMENON OF DICTATORSHIP WAS.

BEYOND THAT, WE WERE LOOKING FOR DICTATORS WHO EXEMPLIFIED SOME OF THE KEY TACTICS THAT DICTATORS USE.

ONEst GOALS IS TO EXPLORE HOW DICTATORS DO WHAT THEY DO, WHAT TECHNIQUES THEY USE TO TAKE POWER, HOLD ON TO POWER.

BUT I DO HAVE TO ASK.

I SUSPECT YOU'VE BEEN ASKED THIS QUESTION BEFORE.

I'M SURE YOU TALKED ABOUT IT.

WHY IS HITLER NOT INCLUDED IN THIS LIST?

WELL, REALLY FOR TWO REASONS.

ONE IS FRANKLY THERE'S BEEN SO MUCH DONE ABOUT HITLER AND THE DOCUMENTARY WORLD AND, OF COURSE, IN THE WORLD OF BOOKS AS WELL.

IN ADDITION, YOU KNOW, STORLTY -- THE STORY OF HITLER IS SO EPIC IN SCOPE AND COMPLEX THAT WE WERE ALSO A LITTLE CONCERNED ABOUT THE CHALLENGES OF GETTING HIM INTO AN HOUR AND DOING JUSTICE.

OBVIOUS INITIALLY IS THEY'RE SO VERY DIFFERENT.

YET, YOU'RE STRUCK BY COMMON THREADS THAT RUN THROUGH THEIR STORIES.

WERE YOU SURPRISED AT THOSE COMMONALITIES, THOSE SIMILARITIES THAT WERE DISCOVERED?

WE WERE.

YOU KNOW, WE BEGAN WORKING ON THIS AS A SERIES OF BIOGRAPHIES.

AND AS WE WENT ALONG, WE DISCOVERED THAT THERE ARE THESE THEMES AND THREADS THAT RUN THROUGH ALL THE STORIES.

AS YOU SAY, THEY'RE INCREDIBLY DIFFERENT FROM EACH OTHER.

IT'S HARD IN SOME WAYS TO PUT A FRANCO OR A KIM ILL SUNG IN THE SAME BUCKET.

BUT ALL OF THEM ESSENTIALLY IF YOU TAKE A STEP BACK DO SOMETHING VERY SIMILAR.

THEY HAVE TO TAKE POWER, HOLD ON TO PO POWER AS LONG AS THEY CAN AND WHAT WE DISCOVERED AS WE TOLD THE STORIES IS THAT THEY USE SIMILAR TECHNIQUES.

AND WHEN WE DISCUSS THIS WITH OUR EXPERTS, THEY CONFIRM THAT THIS IS WHAT IS GOING ON.

THERE SAY KIND OF A DICTATOR'S PLAYBOOK.

AND THAT'S HOW THE SERIES GOT THE TITLE.

I THINK MOST PEOPLE WHEN THEY HEAR THE TERM DICTATOR AND THEY HEAR THE NOTION OF USING VIOLENCE TO ASCEND TO YOUR POWER, YOU WOULD THINK THIS IS HOW THIS IS GOING TO WORK OUT.

DICTATO DICTATOR BAD GUY RISES TO POWER, LOSES POWER AND PEMENOPLE ARE JOYFUL AND CELEBRATE.

ON THE FIRST EPISODE, IN NORTH KOREA, HE IS OPENING SCENES ARE AT HIS DEATH, YOU SEE WHAT APPEARS TO BE THE ENORMOUS SENSE OF LOSS AND DESPAIR BY THE PEOPLE WHO HE ESSENTIALLY TORTURED.

WHAT DID YOU LEARN FROM THAT?

I'M GLAD YOU ASKED THAT.

I THINK IT'S A LOT MORE COMPLICATED THAN JUST DISMISSING THE GUYS AS EVIL VILLIANS.

OF COURSE, THEY WERE IN SOME WAYS EVIL VILLIANS.

IT'S SHORT SIGHTED TO DISMISS THEM THAT WAY.

THESE ARE COMPLICATED MEN.

AND WHILE THEY ARE USING TECHNIQUES OF VIOLENCE AND OTHER FORMS OF OPPRESSION, THEY'RE ALSO CULTIVATING SUPPORT.

ONE OF FIRST THINGS THAT KIM IL SUNG DID WHEN HE TOOK POWER IN NORTH KOREA WAS GIVE LAND TO ABOUT 700,000 LANDLESS KOREAN PEASANTS.

WHICH WAS A WAY OF, YOU KNOW, SERVING THE PEOPLE BUT ALSO WINNING THE SUPPORT OF THE PEOPLE.

SO THERE IS A CARROT AND THERE IS A STICK.

MIKE, I HAVE TO TELL YOU, IT'S AN EXCEPTIONAL SERIES.

IT IS THOUGHTFUL AND THOUGHT PROVOKING WHICH IS WHAT GOOD DOCUMENTARY SERIES SHOULD CERTAINLY BE.

I WANT TO THANK YOU FOR SPEND SOMETHING TIME WITH US.

CONGRATULATIONS TO ALL THE FOLKS WHO WORKED ON THIS.

YOU'VE DONE AN EXTRAORDINARY JOB.

THANKS FOR JOINING US.

THANKS VERY MUCH.

> AND REMINDER FOR YOU, 'THE DICTATORS' PLAYBOOK' PREMIERS WEDNESDAY.

MAKE SURE YOU CHECK YOUR LOCAL LISTINGS AND GO ONLINE FOR VIEWING OPPORTUNITIES.

Funders

MetroFocus is made possible by Sue and Edgar Wachenheim III, the Sylvia A. and Simon B. Poyta Programming Endowment to Fight Anti-Semitism, Bernard and Denise Schwartz, Barbara Hope Zuckerberg, Janet Prindle Seidler, Jody and John Arnhold, the Cheryl and Philip Milstein Family, Judy and Josh Weston and the Dr. Robert C. and Tina Sohn Foundation.

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