Barack Obama, Christy Turlington, Walter Isaacson discussed on Amanpour
Are because I never present myself that way. I'm not I've never really the presenting myself in in any kind of way like that. I think with media certainly 'cause I think. Media always cares to have a name. It always helps to have it in fact my legal name does not include Turlington but I cannot shake it because nobody will accept just Christie Burns so I just incorporate it as opposed opposed to you know I don't mind my name. I love my name but it's long and it's at the end of the alphabet so I was you come up. It's really happy happy to have to be well. Christy Turlington burn your mouth. Thank you very much for being with us. Thank you really important important issue then. We turn now to another woman who was a lot of hats so to speak former. US Ambassador Samantha Power has been an activist journalist and author and into policy makeup her first book on genocide a problem from Hell won a Pulitzer Prize but when she served on President Obama's National Security Council and later Zomba's embassador to the United Nations. She found the too often the road to hell is paved with good intentions. She sat down with Walter Isaacson to discuss a new memoir the education education of an idealist Samantha. Thank you for being with us. Thank you Walter. This is an extraordinarily personal intimate memoir and really begins with your relationship with your father and sort of growing up reading mystery stories in Apar- in Ireland when you were a kid good. Tell me about that so the pub in Dublin was called hearkens still exists. It's a bit grimy. It's probably not the not the place I would want my children to be hanging out reading mysteries but there was some. There's something at least in my memory that's quite magical about my father who died subsequently when I was fourteen years old so who I don't have as many memories as I would like to have with but he would bring me to the pub he he would park me next to him that he was such regular of this pob and unfortunately with such a big drinker that the seat at the bar was called the seat of power for Jim Power My dad and I would sit next to him and then I would go down into the basement and I would just while the hours away reading my books and coming up when I was done with one looking for another he'd run out to the car. Get me another one and again no environment for a child but when you're a child the the fact that you can capture your father's attention when you need needed you know can end up being the the only measure of the man and that's how I felt at the time I certainly didn't feel at that time like I had a difficult childhood but what my mother and my father separated and there was no divorce in Ireland back then so the options for her she had met somebody else also an Irishman from Dublin and they wanted to build a life together so they decided to make their move to this country but it ended up in tragedy because after we came to America and really before I got to spend more meaningful time with my dad. My father died to me very suddenly and you talk so much about the anxiety that came out of that and that seemed very useful to readers not to that people like yourself. Yeah can be deeply anxious because yet in some ways choose to move to when you were in America between your mother and your father and then his drinking happened and then you're dealing you with the rest of your life you deal with. It and you don't even know what you're carrying you know. I think it's it's for me. It was years later before it really started to unpack. Just the sense of responsibility wants ability. I felt as often is the case with children who grow up to be adults and look back. They they exaggerate they they impose their adult cells on their a child selves and think that when they were children they had the power in the agency that they have when they're looking back and saw unpacking all that was really important but yes. I was I again whether because of these events or for other reasons but I found myself at different times in my life actually usually when I was in unstressed environments Armaments with just her riddick kind of constricted breathing and and it was often the case that I was this could could free myself these feelings only when I was for example a war correspondent or when I was operating under a deadline or you know even later in life when I was in a very high stakes negotiation whereas when things were still you know whatever lay within would sort of come bubbling up and and so you know I write about trying therapist understand that a little bit and you know. Sometimes you feel very alone when you're going through episodes like that or you're feeling I mean people have M- many more significant challenges I have faced but whether it's that or writing about our efforts to conceive a child and infertility IVF and all of that. It's just just life and this is what it looks like. It doesn't look like the veneer you know of of all these Polish people running around the great saying that I come back to in the book which is never compare your insides to somebody else's outsides and I feel like there's something thing deepen that but part of the open up the insides and then let people know out there that that you know everybody has their struggles. Tell me about getting to know the Obama came about because he read a problem from Hell the book on American responses to genocide and and I was surprised he was the only senator who reached out to me had reached out to me at that point at least having read the book and I thought maybe he'd want to talk about the book and its narrow sense focusing specifically on mass atrocities and what could be done on this or that but in fact he was really interested in it was a very creative read or kind of broader read in sort of what that set of responses indicated about the tendency of the US government not to think about human consequences more broadly on a whole set of issues and he was new to the Senate on the Senate relations committee and wanting to put forth already what he called a tough smart and humane approach to foreign policy so you become a foreign policy adviser to his during the campaign and you get to know cash son Stein who becomes your husband I do all rolled into one yeah well that one that was a bit of a miracle. That's more serendipity because I with sitting at my desk one day and casts a received a letter excuse me an email from Kazakhstan the gasoline whose books I've read and and the email basically was an email lambasting the state of the campaign or at least one subset of the campaign that worked on Obama's rule of law aw ideas and Santa last email. He didn't mean to blast Senate to one person mistake completely. I am thinking taking did he. Just send to that one person because it was addressed to one person. Am I the only one and then very soon I realized it had gone to the entire. Obama campaigns and that made you decide you wanted to marry. I would just like everyone else. Nobody else is going to marry him. No I thought to myself I've done that and it sucks in my heart. I just went out to cass sunshine and so I wrote him. I said I'm just don't worry about it and next time you're in Boston. Let's get a coffee. I promise you people will forget and next thing. I knew we were married well. He had to walk us through your big mistake. Yeah he which is on book tour you make the mistake of offhandedly using the word monster when you're talking about Hillary Clinton now our and so we have to step down from the campaign for a while in the penalty box the Sin Bin is my Irish relatives called it. Indeed is my first campaign. You know I was so emotionally invested I did not have a kind of distance or the experience of prior campaign so you know what we're probably in retrospect pretty traditional a a maybe not ideal campaign tactics but a bit run of the mill for me. Were just these transgressions these outreach and so basically I went off often was all upset about something that the Clinton campaign was doing and then reporter published it and it included the denigrating integrate comments about Senator Clinton and it was mortifying for the first time really since the community.