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FAREED ZAKARIA GPS
Suicide Bombers Smuggled in with Refugees; Interview with Michael Chertoff; Why is ISIS Targeting France?; Violence Crosses Europe's Borders. Aired 10-11 ET.
Aired November 15, 2015 - 10:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[10:00:07] FAREED ZAKARIA, HOST: This is GPS, the GLOBAL PUBLIC SQUARE. Welcome to all of you in the United States and around the world. I'm Fareed Zakaria coming to you live from New York.
Today a special report tackling all aspects of the attacks in Paris. We will bring you the latest in the investigation. We will ask how can Europe and the United States be protected against future attacks with reports that at least one terrorist snuck in among refugees. We will ask whether borders in Europe and the United States will be slammed shut.
And are attacks like this part of a frightening new plan by ISIS? The Secretary of State John Kerry on the United States' anti-ISIS strategy.
And finally, how can Muslims be steered away from radicalization?
But first, here's my take. Before we delve into analysis, let's take a moment simply to be stunned and saddened. The barbarism of the attacks in Paris mark a new low in terror. The attacks were not directed against national symbols or government targets but designed simply to kill innocent men, women and children. The murderers did not even bother to issue demands.
France's president Francois Hollande has scored Friday's attacks an act of war. They were worse. War has a goal. It's fought by soldiers against soldiers. This is nihilism. Violence as an end in it of itself.
That doesn't, however, answer the question what to do. In the wake of the attacks people rightly ask, what could France have done better? What could the United States have done better? And people are offering up various solutions regarding borders, visas, police procedures and the battle against ISIS in Iraq and Syria.
Well, would this really have prevented this kind of attacks? As the "New York Times" has noted France already has in place very tough anti-terrorism policies at home. The United States has been expanding its war against the terror group for a year. It has spent $5 billion and launched over 8,000 airstrikes against ISIS with its coalition partners.
Would more strikes have resulted in fewer terrorist responses by ISIS? Would the various policies that people have advocated -- no fly zones, safe havens, special operations forces -- have stopped the Paris attacks?
We don't know the details yet but the attacks appeared to have been carried out by seven or eight people, some locals, some outsiders, armed with weapons that are easily obtainable anywhere in the world, coordinated only in the sense that they all attacked at about the same time. They chose soft targets that are difficult to depend. Cafes and concert halls. This didn't require vast sums of money, complex logistics or great cunning. It just required barbarity and a willingness to die.
Now it is easy to imagine the likely responses from the West. The war against ISIS will intensify with the United States and France, possibly even sending troops in there. At home it will mean more domestic laws and tougher police efforts to monitor and arrest people. Given the news about terrorists posing as refugees it could mean that borders will be closed. The government will spy on communications more intrusively. It will fuel the rise of nationalist politicians everywhere, and mistrust between the Muslim and non-Muslim communities will grow.
It's worth asking, what does ISIS want? By most accounts it wants all of this, a world divided between Muslims and non-Muslims. Its propaganda stresses that the West is intractably anti-Muslim. And as Graham Wood notes, it has always openly tried to draw Western forces into Iraq and Syria hoping to make itself the great army of believers, fighting the crusaders.
Imagine if the West could respond to these terror attacks with increased and more effective efforts both at home and abroad but also with the determination to demonstrate that it would act but not overreact. That it would reaffirm its basic values and it would strive to restore normalcy in the face of brutality. To do this would be to understand that terrorism is unique in that it depends for its effectiveness on the response of the onlooker. If we are not terrorized then it doesn't really work.
Let's get started.
[10:05:07] Let's get right to the latest with CNN senior international correspondent Clarissa Ward. She's coming to us live from Paris where she's near the scene of the attack on the Bataclan concert hall.
Clarissa, first I have to ask you about this new revelation that CNN has found about the terrorist, one of the bombers posing as a refugee. Do we have more details on that?
CLARISSA WARD, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, it now appears that as many as three attackers possibly posed as refugees gaining access into Europe on the refugee route going from Syria into Turkey then on to the Greece -- the Greek island of Leroy and then from there on through countries, Serbia and Croatia and into central Europe.
It's believed that at least one was traveling on what was most probably a fake Syrian passport. But there's also talk about two fake Turkish passports. ISIS here really exploiting this refugee crisis. As you well know, Fareed, the vast majority of the hundreds of
thousands of Syrian refugees are in fact just escaping the very violence that ISIS is perpetrating inside Syria. But by doing this they've created a rift, essentially, created doubt about the intentions of these refugees, and given a lot of head wind to right- wing government or right-wing parties that might be actively asking for refugees to be curtailed.
But at this stage what we know specifically is that at least one of these attackers using what is believed to be a fake passport and possibly two others using fake passports, using the refugee trail to gain access here to central Europe.
ZAKARIA: Yes. Poland has already announced that in light of this one revelation they are simply going to shut down and not take any more refugees.
Clarissa, what about the eighth attacker? There's seven who died but there was talk that there were eight and there was a manhunt. Do we have any news on that eighth -- potentially eighth attacker?
WARD: Well, this is really the focus of the investigation here in France. Now, Fareed, if you remember that ISIS statement said very clearly and specifically that there were eight attackers but French authorities said that seven attackers have been killed. Now we know that there was an abandoned getaway car. It was left in the Paris suburb of Montreuil. About three Kalashnikovs or AK-47s were found in that car. And it's believed that it was abandoned after the attack, implying that somebody was driving the car. Who is that somebody? Are they possibly the eighth attacker?
That is very much the focus of the investigation at the moment and of course beyond that, what network may have been involved with facilitating and orchestrating a sophisticated attack like this, Fareed, because obviously it's very unlikely that this could have been perpetrated just by these seven or eight men alone without help in terms of logistics and building those suicide vests, obtaining those weapons, and all of the various logistics that would have gone into orchestrating an attack of this nature -- Fareed.
ZAKARIA: Terrific reporting. Thank you so much, Clarissa.
Let's turn now to Michael Chertoff here with me in New York. Chertoff was of course the second ever secretary of Homeland Security. He is now the executive chairman of the Chertoff Group.
Mike, everybody is asking in a essence the kind of questions I was raising in my take which is maybe seven or eight people, they probably met in a few cafes or somebody's apartment. They probably did plan out the fact that there would be these three attacks at the same time. They used AK-47s or some grenades. What could the French police have done? Should -- you know, how could one prevent something like this?
MICHAEL CHERTOFF, FORMER SECRETARY OF HOMELAND SECURITY: Well, I don't think we have the full story yet. Apparently one of these individuals, according to reporting, was on the radar screen in terms of someone who is known to the police as being a radical jihadi. The problem is you've got more of these people out there than you have law enforcement.
ZAKARIA: Right. And I think they had -- that he was a radical but he hasn't actually committed any kind of violent acts.
ZAKARIA: So what do you do?
CHERTOFF: So it's very difficult. And I'm low to criticize the French who have a very vigorous counterterrorism capability. One thing, though, you can do is use intelligence to gather as much information as you can about people traveling or communicating particularly outside of the country back to the Middle East.
You know, the metadata program which we have in the U.S. which allows us to collect simply telephone number calls and other telephone numbers or IP address connection with another IP address is often a very critical tool in identifying people who might be pre-operational.
ZAKARIA: And the French don't have this?
CHERTOFF: I don't know if the French have it or not but -- and again, it's not a perfect solution. But that is the kind of technique you can use to raise a red flag about somebody that needs a closer look.
[10:10:04] ZAKARIA: If these guys were using cell phones talking to one another, does it raise -- or sending text messages, does it raise issues about, you know, companies, the technology company have encrypted data so that communications are hard for the government to penetrate. Is that wall going to be broken now?
CHERTOFF: Well, and I've taken the position that we are not to create backdoors or duplicate keys to encryption because that compromises cyber security. And I think at the end of the day what's most important is establishing the connection or the set of connections that allows you to focus in. Because you have to do that to even know what communications you need to look at. And then once you have the connections there are a variety of techniques you can use without necessarily undercutting encryption that would allow you to focus on the people who are a threat.
ZAKARIA: So when you look at these, do you think there's something that other countries, the United States should be doing that it isn't? I mean, should -- should every place have metal detectors now?
CHERTOFF: No. And I think as you said earlier, we don't want to go so far near the direction we make life unlivable. I think first of all we have to make sure we are tuning up and coordinating our intelligence collection capabilities. The Europeans have been critical in the last few months after Snowden, about the fact that we collect in Europe. Now we see why we want to collect in Europe because there are threats inside Europe that affect not only our allies but Americans who might be in the region. I think we also need to look at taking a much tougher line with
respect to what's going on in Syria and Iraq because I think the conditions that have led to this really have the gestation in years of our not having a proper strategy and dealing with ISIS where the sources, which is in the Middle East.
ZAKARIA: Do you think ISIS is very different from al Qaeda? Because what I'm struck by is the United States has effectively crippled al Qaeda. ISIS strikes me as different. It has support -- you know, it has local support in Iraq and Syria from discontented Sunnis.
CHERTOFF: I think there are a couple of things that are different. First of all the generation of al Qaeda that gave us 9/11 is largely gone. This generation I think is focused on both large and small scale attacks, including what we just saw in Paris or what we saw with "Charlie Hebdo" or even back what we saw in Mumbai back several years ago.
The second is they are trying very hard to recruit in the West in a much more sophisticated way than the original al Qaeda. And they're doing that by appealing through some of their social media to people in the West who are disaffected or looking for something to affiliate with. And I think that is a disturbing development.
Finally what they're actually doing in, for example, Iraq, is trying to build a state that is appealing to Sunnis. And what they're doing is they're saying to Sunnis, look, the Baghdad government is hostile to you. It's a Shia government. Assad is hostile to you, he is not a Sunni. Come to us and we will give you money, economic support and defense.
CHERTOFF: And I'm told by a Sunni defense official in Europe that actually there are Sunnis who are leaving the Shia-controlled parts of Iraq and going back to the areas controlled by ISIS because of the fact they feel that they are safer there.
ZAKARIA: Correct. Until you can find an alternative Sunni, moderate Sunni government for Syria, you get rid of ISIS, they'll come back.
CHERTOFF: I think that's right. And what's happening now is there's a population caught between Assad and the Shia on the one hand and ISIS on the other. And if we don't give them a safe haven they're going to wind up by being refugees or they're going to wind up gravitating to the extremists.
ZAKARIA: Michael Chertoff, pleasure to have you on.
One programming note, on Tuesday night at 9:00 p.m. Eastern you can catch my special report on ISIS. It's called "Blindsided: How ISIS Shook the World." Don't miss it.
Next on GPS, we will take you back to Paris and talk about the whys of it all. Why Paris? Why France again?
[10:18:26] ZAKARIA: Friday's attack was of course the second time Paris has been hit this year. A dozen people were killed in the "Charlie Hebdo" attack in January and it raises important questions why France and why now.
Joining me to discuss, Joelle Garriaud Maylam is the secretary of the Foreign Affairs Committee in the French Senate and Fawaz Gerges is chair of Contemporary Middle Eastern Politics and International Relations at the London School of Economics. He was in Paris at the time of the attack.
Fawaz, what is your explanation to why France? Why now? Is this some kind of retaliation?
FAWAZ GERGES, PROFESSOR OF MIDDLE EASTERN POLITICS, LONDON SCHOOL OF ECONOMICS: Of course it's retaliation that capacity, networks, human assets. I mean, imagine, seven suicide bombers. Seven suicide basically belts.
Imagine, Fareed, what it needed to be done in terms of pre-planning, choosing the targets, casing, explosives, explosive skills. Attacking events strategic center, three coordinated teams where the president of the republic was. So in France, and that's the reality you have ISIS and the various al Qaeda groups have networks. Networks of local supporters, radicalized French young man who believe in this nihilistic ideology.
ZAKARIA: Senator, what have you heard about why -- you know, what happened here, how much planning, how much coordination it took?
[10:20:01] JOELLE GARRIAUD MAYLAM, MEMBER OF THE FRENCH SENATE: It took, obviously, a huge coordinating effort. It has been extremely sophisticated. For months we have been saying that we cannot only talk about lone wolves as we thought was the case. And it was the case previously to some extent with the "Charlie Hebdo" attack. Now it's really war. It's people who are extremely determined, who are ready to blow themselves up and most important and most worrying is the fact that they have got means, financial means, they are very sophisticated and they're extremely dangerous.
And this is something we've seen happening for such a long time, for seven months. I mean, since 2010, we knew that France would be one of the first targets for Daesh. I've been writing on it on my reports for the NATO Parliamentary Assembly where (INAUDIBLE) on terrorism. We have to face that fact. This huge octopus with several tentacles but one is obviously France. But France is the only state, not the only state at risk.
It's the whole civilization. It's a whole western world who is suffering and who will suffer if we don't get together to fight, Fareed, as sure as we can and as quickly as we can. We can't keep on hoping for some solution. Daesh has been extending a lot for as long as we've been waiting in the wings looking at it and observing it. Now we need to move. ZAKARIA: Fawaz, is this a change of strategy for ISIS because for
many years it seemed as though ISIS was really trying to build its caliphate in Iraq and Syria. It exploited people to come and migrate to Syria, through the caliphate. It even said more important than attacking crusaders. But now we see the Russian jet. We see this. Have they cast their gaze outward now?
GERGES: No, I don't think so, Fareed.
ZAKARIA: Fawaz, why don't you go first?
GERGES: The strategic goal of ISIS was and remains the near enemy. The sectarian based governments in Iraq and Syria, they have a genocide ideology against the Shia. The reason why ISIS or the so- called Daesh has been able to build capacity because it has blended with Sunni community. You asked earlier about the difference between al Qaeda central and ISIS.
At the heart of its power, Fareed, al Qaeda never numbered more than 2,000, 3,000 fighters. ISIS now has between 30,000 and 100 fighters including four Western -- 4,000 Westerners. So it has capacity. So the question, the priority remains the near enemy in Iraq and Syria to build the caliphate to consolidate. It's true that it's lashing out now outside against the far enemy. As you said. The Russian, the Lebanese, Iran and now of course Paris might take on it because it wants to re-enforce its narrative.
It's losing ground in Iraq and Syria. It wants to basically the attacks in Paris and against the Russian jet allegedly by ISIS is to convince its followers, convince its base, it's standing up, it's winning. It's exacting revenge against the Western powers and Russia itself but the reality is we should not be blinded by these attacks, bloody and catastrophic as they are. The focus remains on the caliphate and consolidating the so-called Islamic State.
ZAKARIA: Fawaz Gerges, Senator, thank you so much. Great pleasure to have you on.
The West nightmare scenario made real. An ISIS fighter joins the flood of refugees to infiltrate Europe. Will Western nations shut their borders? We will discuss that next on GPS.
[10:23:04] ZAKARIA: As we hear from Paris this morning, we're now seeing Europe's nightmare scenario made real. ISIS using the refugee crisis to infiltrate foot soldiers into the West. Does this mean Europe should lock down its borders?
Joining me now is David Frum. He was speech writer for President George W. Bush. He's now senior editor of the "Atlantic" and he has written a lot about refugees and migration. David, what is the right response here because it's a strange
situation. The vast majority of these refugees from what we can tell, 99.99 percent are fleeing ISIS but there seems to be at least one ISIS foot soldier in that mix.
DAVID FRUM, SENIOR EDITOR, THE ATLANTIC: Well, what we're seeing is a mass migration and not just from Syria but from across North Africa and the broader Middle East. Only about a third of the people who have attempted to enter Europe since 2014 have been from Syria. But as you say, those people are fleeing violence. The problem is not so much the migration but the complete collapse of any kind of orderly process in Europe. Any kind of attempt of controlling orders.
You can -- there's a humanitarian element. You want to resettle people. But it is impossible to resettle them all in Europe. More important and more frightening to me even than the risk of individual terrorist smuggling in with the refugees is this problem. ISIS' most important strategic asset is a substantial alienated, underemployed population, second generation young men in Europe.
First start by not making that challenge bigger and then go to work on integrating them with policies to create work and to lessen dependency on government benefits.
ZAKARIA: So what do you do, David? Because these people are fleeing from wherever and however. Do you just stop them the way the Hungarians did? Do you have
[10:30:00] some policy of resettling them somewhere else. There are already millions in refugee camps in Jordan, in Turkey, in Lebanon?
FRUM: Well, the vast majority are going to stay in Turkey and Lebanon, no matter what any way. So, the focus should be on making those temporary refuges more attractive and more humane and creating work. Bringing in electricity, bringing in flowing water and making sure there are things for people to do. But it's an illusion to begin with that you're going to be able to resettle much of this population outside the region in Europe. And to do it to allow the migrants to select themselves, which is what is happening here, that is the most dangerous course and not just both because the risk of terrorism and also because the risk of how do you assimilate people. You have a great challenge. Many of these, probably the majority of the killers are going to turn out to be people who are born in Europe. And there are thousands, as you know, migrating to the region to take up violence from Australia, from Canada, from the United States, from Britain, from elsewhere in Europe. That is the strategic question and how do you integrate them. And you begin by not making that problem larger.
ZAKARIA: Ben Carson says that we should shut down America's - close down the borders to all migrants or refugees or immigrants from the Middle East entirely. What do you think this is going to do to the American political debate?
FRUM: I don't think it's going to do much to the American debate, partly because that's an overdramatic response. The correct answer, the correct alternative to the complete collapse of a process that we've seen in Europe is not zero. There's some refugees who will be resettled. There're people who will do well in new countries. And you need a rational process to bring them. The United States has a better record than the Europeans do of assimilating and acculturating people. That's not the answer. So, some Republicans will say things that are overdramatic, but the real, the real fault line in the Republican Party will become those who advocate a bigger entry into the Syrian civil war and those who are cautious.
You have so rightly emphasized, the United States has nothing to be for in Syria. It has no goals. If you have no goals, your military methods can't succeed. And yet, there will be advocacy for an expanded military role in the absence of those goals. That is going to be the fault line in the American debate or the Republican debate.
ZAKARIA: And specifically, you are close student of the Republican Party. I mean people are wondering, does this help Trump? Does this help, you know, Jeb Bush? How do you see it?
FRUM: It doesn't make Trump go -- the Republican challenge has been to find someone who can speak to the legitimate concerns of the Trump voters in a responsible way who isn't Donald Trump. And that question is only going to become more intense. And as Jeb Bush and Marco Rubio and others line up for an expanded ground presence in Syria, if they do, that question of how do you come up with a responsible Republican foreign policy and responsible national security policy and take the migration issue away from Donald Trump, that is going to become an ever more urgent and more difficult question.
ZAKARIA: And in Europe the rise of these nationalists right wing politicians presumably means, you know, that centrists like Angela Merkel and David Cameron are going to be even more embattled? Sorry, we lost David Frum. We are going to get back to you.
Coming up, it's an all too familiar pattern. A well planned attack on the West followed by a swift and violent response that further stokes the fires of jihad. Will the West make these mistakes again? That's next on GPS.
ZAKARIA: David Frum said in the last segment that the greatest danger of terrorism comes not so much from the refugees or foreigners in general, but second generation migrants. Sometimes with Europeans, sometimes even with American passports who have been radicalized. How to counter this? How to reverse it? Maajid Nawaz was himself a radical jihadi. Now as the founder of the counter extremism group Quilliam, Nawaz works to promote tolerance and democracy among Muslim youth. Maajid, when you hear about these people in Paris, and let us assume that some of them, we don't know how many, are, in fact, locals. Paint us a picture of the kind of person who would do this. It's still so unthinkable not just being willing to kill, but being willing to die.
MAAJID NAWAZ, FOUNDER OF COUNTER-EXTREMIST GROUP QUILLIAM: Yes, thank you, Fareed. I want to begin by saying that look, I deal with this every single day of my life. I've been - this struggle, this cause has consumed me since founding Quilliam eight years ago. So, I just want to make it clear that between the apologies among the far left in this debate, you know, pretending there's absolutely no problem with Europe's Muslims and between the sensationalism of the far right, the most important thing as you've correctly stated right now for us, is for us to remain level-headed. The vast majority of those who have gone to join ISIS from the West, Western-born and raised Muslims are Western-citizens.
So, yes, there's genuine discussions around refugees. We need to be having genuine conversations about some of the challenges that refugees pose. But look, let's be honest and real about this. Germany has taken in hundreds of thousands of refugees. France has hardly taken in any. Yet, I bet you that many of these attackers in France were French-born and raised citizens. So, let's remain levelheaded and avoid being, I'd say, blinded by our left eye or popping a blood vessel in our right eye because both of those conclusions would render us blind.
ZAKARIA: And tell us about those, you know, let's assume you're right. Tell us about these French youth. You've interviewed hundreds of these kinds of people. Why are they willing to commit suicide for a cause they've often barely understand as far as I can tell?
NAWAZ: So, I would argue that jihadist extremism we're in the midst of a fully blown global jihadist insurgency.
NAWAZ: And jihadist extremism is the new - the anti-establishment, angry youth. Many even convert to Islam to join them. And a few factors come into play here when they are joining this phenomenon. One of them is a sense of grievance or anger, a perceived sense, ultimately, of grievance and anger, another reason, identity crisis.
And in the case of France, you know, we all hear about the suburbs on the edges of Paris and how difficult it's been for the French to fix this question. The same applies, by the way, to Britain and across much of Europe. To fix what I call the Muslim question. The successful integration of those Muslims who are born and raised into - in Europe and finding a place, which is a two-way street, it's a mutual process of integration. Finding a place for them in European society is a huge challenge. And the final factor - in here is the role that the ideological - ideological narrative plays. I called that ideology Islamist extremism, as distinct from the religion of Islam, in a way, in which that ideology blinkers this angry young men and women from - from seeing any form of moral clarity and being prepared to commit all forms of atrocities in its name.
ZAKARIA: What - when you got radicalized yourself, what was the principle motive for you? NAWAZ: The principal motive in my case, I joined a group known as Hizb ut-Tahrir, at the age of 16. It's the first group that was responsible for popularizing this notion of resurrecting a caliphate. And at 16, there were two things that really disturb me. One was the genocide that was unfolding in Bosnia against Muslims on our own continent of Europe, which made me feel completely disconnected from mainstream society. Because, of course, the reaction in dealing with that genocide was incredibly slow. And many, many Bosnian Muslims lost their lives in that genocide. And the second was domestic racism, which I faced.
But I want to emphasize here that those two were as perceived by me as a 16-year-old. Of course, you know, they don't justify joining a theocratic organization. So, what kicked in off for that sense of grievance, was the fact that I was found in that incredibly vulnerable state, and sold this ideological narrative. And, in fact, this is lots of point. The ideological narrative that we need to be a lot more robust in dealing with. We have to recognize, we cannot shoot our way out of this problem. We are in the midst of a global Jihadist insurgency, and we have to render the appeal of this Islamist ideology as unattractive as Soviet communist has now become for young people today.
ZAKARIA: Do you find finally that you can reverse it when you talk to these young people? What works best in deprogramming them?
NAWAZ: The most inefficient way to go about this is to try and pull people out once they join. Unfortunately, it's incredibly difficult. I'm not -- my pattern isn't normal. I was a political prisoner in Egypt, and most of those whom I served with are either with - at the same level of their theocratic convictions or even more, you know, even more committed to the notion of resurrecting the caliphate. I think the most efficient way to approach this is to prevent the next generation of youth from succumbing to this phenomenon of Islamist extremism, and that would mean working to build resilience among communities and crucially it's not just a Muslim problem.
It's not just a non-Muslim problem. I give the analogy of racism, Fareed. You know, you don't have to be African-American to challenge racism. Anyone who cares about this issue, it's all of our problems. Because that bomb when it goes off, you know, all of us get affected by it. So, we all have to show solidarity including Muslims across the world, have to show the solidarity we expect from others when it comes to racism and anti-Muslim attacks, we show in this instance and we all have to stand together. The worst thing we can do right now is think and act like ISIS by dividing people along religious lines.
ZAKARIA: Very quickly, do you think the tide is turning? Where are we in this struggle?
NAWAZ: Unfortunately, I think, this is the new normal. We're going to have many more such attacks. In fact, we are overdue in attack in Britain. (INAUDIBLE). If that were to happen. So, I think this is the new normal. And we're not turning the tide at the moment, by what we are turning the tide on in particular is an understanding and getting to grips with this. David Cameron, the prime minister here, has been speaking openly for once and finally, actually, this year, about the threat that the Islamist ideology poses. And I would encourage other world leaders to recognize this problem as an ideas problem in civil society. Less so than a physical military problem. Of course, war has a role, but the first and primary solution to this is going to be winning back the hearts and minds of those angry disenfranchised youth across the West and making sure they don't succumb to this form of extremism in the first place.
ZAKARIA: Don't you think, finally, and we only have 45 seconds left. But it does strike me that's all well and good for David Cameron to do this, it would be even better if the ruler of Saudi Arabia were to do it. If you could find the key, Sunni Muslim leaders who would, you know, in a genuine way take on not simply the violence, but also the extremism of the ideas and the ideology, that would begin to make some difference, perhaps.
NAWAZ: I agree with you 100 percent. And I don't deserve an applause here on your show for saying I don't want to kill anyone. You know, that should be - Look how low the bar has sunk. That should be the base line. What really as you pointed out, is needed, is for those who have real leadership among Muslim majority societies.
NAWAZ: Those who should be showing their leadership to get to this ideology and to debunk it, to refute it, and as I said, to render it as unattractive as Nazism and Soviet communism have become today.
ZAKARIA: Maajid Nawaz, always a pleasure to talk to you.
NAWAZ: Thank you, Fareed.
ZAKARIA: You're looking at live picture of a memorial here in Paris. Next on "GPS," I spoke to the American Secretary of State John Kerry this week about America's anti-ISIS strategy. You will want to hear what it is and his response when we come back. (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
ZAKARIA: On Thursday, I traveled to the State Department for an interview with the Secretary of State John Kerry.
During that conversation, Kerry talked about something that is even more relevant today in the wake of the attacks in Paris, the Obama administration's policy against ISIS. Listen carefully to what he told me.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOHN KERRY, U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE: I mean there is a concerted strategy here, Fareed. You know, I keep hearing people say well, what's the strategy? What's - The strategy is clear. President Obama in the very beginning said we're going to degrade and defeat ISIL. We're going to stabilize the countries in the region, Jordan, Lebanon, work with Turkey, and we're going to seek a political settlement. That is exactly the strategy today and it is working, to a degree, not as fast as we would like, perhaps, but we're making gains. We have liberated major communities. About 75 percent of the border between northern Syria and Turkey has been secured. You have another piece where we are engaging in an operation with the Turks to secure the final piece. West of the Euphrates River. There's pressure being put on Raqqa. There are major disruptions to the leadership, and command and control of ISIL. Their territory has been shrunk by some 17,000 square kilometers. There's a difference in the way they have to operate as a result of our operations.
And I believe that when you combine what's happening in Iraq with what's happening in Syria, there's an enormous amount of pressure that's continually being ramped up with respect to ISIL. That ultimately, we want more forces on the ground to be able to do it, not ours. They're going to have to be people on the ground.
ZAKARIA: But isn't that the key, which is in Syria you can defeat ISIL or DAESH, but then somebody has to govern that real estate?
ZAKARIA: And what has tended to happen and, you know, we don't have local partners other than the Kurds. You leave or the Kurdish forces leave and ISIL will come back or Assad comes back. There aren't those moderate Syrians just by the - chairman of the Joint Chiefs own admission, that just aren't many of them.
KERRY: We understand that. But on the other hand, if you can move rapidly towards a political settlement, rapidly, over the next six months towards an election, et cetera. If you could have a ceasefire, these are all ifs. I understand that. But you have to have several strategies, and we do. One is the military pressure against ISIL. The military pressure that's taken place in the moderate opposition against Assad and the political track where we're trying to get the parties united and then two weeks ago in Vienna we had a major step forward where everybody, including Iran and Russia signed onto a unified secular Syria to maintaining the structures of the government to all opposing ISIL and to protecting minorities coming up with their process that leads to an election. And now we're working in doing that. Iran and Russia and all the rest of our partners, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Qatar, et cetera, are committed to driving this political process that will have a transitional council that will begin to take over management of certain activities in Syria, yet to be defined and determined in the negotiation and that will lead to a sort of transitional process. And ultimately, that is where we hope the issue of Assad and his future will be resolved.
ZAKARIA: Next on GPS, I will tell you about a moment of great grace in the midst of terrible evil.
ZAKARIA: Paris is a city struck by terror and overwhelming grief. But the city of lights is resilient and it is already finding its way out of the dark. Yesterday outside the Bataclan concert hall where the deadliest of the attacks took place, a man began to play John Lennon's "Imagine" on the piano as people grieved in the shadow of the carnage that had taken place just hours earlier. Music and the human spirit were beginning to take back the city.
ZAKARIA: This week Parisians have asked in horror, why us again. Why Paris? Why France? There are many answers, of course, but one that I want to remind us all of, is that France is, in fact, a symbol of liberty and freedom. It's revolution, its ideals, its thinkers have been at the forefront of the struggle for the universal rights of men and women for centuries. Paris has been a cosmopolitan city drawing people from across the globe who see its beauty and affirm its values. Paris has also been a place where art and music and culture have flourished freely. A magnet for the world's greatest talents to come and live and create and inspire. And that song reminds us that in our darkest moments of despair, sometimes it is only art that can fill the void and make us whole again.
Thanks for watching our show this week.
I'll see you next week. And don't forget on Tuesday night at 9:00 p.m. Eastern, you can watch my special report "Blindsided: How ISIS Shook the World" right here on CNN.