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Russia Investigation Shakes Trump White House; Lavrov, Manafort's Ukraine Ties Should Be Investigated; Trump Attacks Credibility Of Papadopoulos; A City Break In Brussels; CNN Inside Niger Ambushed Zone; Eight Killed In Gaza Tunnel Explosion. Aired 11-12p ET

Aired October 31, 2017 - 11:00   ET



[11:00:15] BECKY ANDERSON, CONNECT THE WORLD, CNN: A very warm welcome I am Beck Anderson it is 7:00 p.m. in Abu Dhabi and this is Connect the



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Papadopoulos his plea agreement describes his testimony as a roadmap to the ongoing investigation.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The direction of the administration is like legal justice system work.

SARAH HUCKABEE SANDERS, DEPUTY WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: Today that has nothing to do with the president.


ANDERSON: A false claim of White House underfired and more to come from an investigation already shaking Washington and full force of special counsel

Robert Mueller's opening salvo in part.

Distract and discredits that appears to be the White House back each day and the fallout intense by over stunning revelation in the Russia

investigation. On the same day the charges were unveiled against two former top officials in Donald Trump campaign. We learned that another

campaign associates pleaded guilty, weeks ago, but it does not end there. Document showed George Papadopoulos actually switched sides after his

arrest and may have provided valuable information to the Feds. Jessica Schneider in our report stated that clear sign investigators are on the

hunt for possible collision.


JESSICA SCHNEIDER, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Special counsel Robert Mueller's office, unfeeling documents that show former Trump campaign

foreign policy advisor George Papadopoulos has been cooperating with investigators, since his arrest in July. Papadopoulos pleading guilty

earlier this month to lying to the FBI about his contact with Russia, including a meeting with a London professor who told him in April 2016 that

the Kremlin had obtained dirt on Hillary Clinton in the form of thousands of emails. Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta's email was hacked by

Russians the month before.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Papadopoulos's direct evidence to someone with the campaign was being contacted by Russians.


SCHNEIDER: Papadopoulos's plea agreement describes his testimony as a roadmap to the ongoing investigation, noting that there is a large scale

ongoing investigation of which Papadopoulos is a small part. The document describes Papadopoulos as a proactive cooperator, suggesting that for the

last three months. He may have been providing the FBI with information about other Trump campaign associates or even wearing a wire. The plea

agreement outlines Papadopoulos's extensive efforts to establish a connection between Russian officials and the Trump campaign informing then

campaign chairman Paul Manafort in May that the Russians were interested in meeting with Kennedy Trump. Manafort forwarded the email to his deputy

Rick Gates writing. Let us discuss. We need someone to communicate that DT is not doing these trips, it should be someone low-level in the campaign

so as not to send any signal.

In July Papadopoulos reached out to a foreign contact saying that a meeting has been approved from our side, days later WikiLeaks began releasing the

emails hacked from the DNC and Trump made these infamous remarks.


DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Russia if you are listening I hope you are able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing.


SCHNEIDER: The following month a Trump camping supervisor identified by the Washington Post as former Trump campaign national cochairman Sam Clovis

told Papadopoulos, I would encourage you and another foreign policy advisor to make the trip, if it is feasible. Clovis's lawyer telling the post that

he actually opposed the trip and was just being polite.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There is no evidence that Mr. Manafort and the Trump campaign colluded with the Russian government.


SCHNEIDER: Papadopoulos's interviews with federal investigators likely contributing to the charges brought against both Manafort and Gates, who

pleaded not guilty on 12 counts Monday, including conspiracy against the United States conspiracy to launder money and seven counts of failure to

file reports a foreign bank and financial accounts.


ANDERSON: Hearing straight from the Kremlin on all of this, the Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov said, the U.S. should investigate Ukraine's

links to more pull Manafort. Let us see what it says on the box. This Connect the World on all of this is CNN Clarissa Ward has all the details

on the Ukraine connection from (inaudible), Nick Robinson is on the story of a London professor as described in that Jessica's report there, that

described in his federal complaint against Papadopoulos. Clarissa let us established what we know at this stage. What are you learning where you


[11:05:22] CLARISSA WARD, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Becky it is interesting the official party line from the Ukrainian government so far has been to

really keep mom on all of this, unlike the Russians, who, as you pointed out, have kind of repudiated the allegation that are put forward in the

indictment, the Ukrainian government is taking a much more muted talents, though I do think that that should be seen in the context of Ukraine's

continued reliance on the U.S. government on the Trump White House, specifically, both for financial and military aid cells.

Not a lot coming out of here officially, unofficially you will hear from various sort of anticorruption activists that they welcome the charges

being made against Manafort, because when you read through that indictment, the man really at the center of it Becky, is the former Ukrainian President

Victor Yanukovych and of course he is a character who is hated by many here in the Ukraine. Accused of rampant corruption of being essentially a

Kremlin stooge who embezzled millions and millions of dollars out of Ukraine who imprisoned political opponents, who according to many here,

they believe he actually ordered riot police to fire on pro-Western demonstrators when political protest broke out back in 2014.

So certainly some people here welcoming this that they say they would like to see more cooperation between the U.S. and Ukraine in terms of furthering

larger investigations into the broader Ukrainian Yanukovych correction network. Becky.

ANDERSON: Which makes it all the more interesting the Sergei Lavrov, the Russian Foreign Ministry said Manafort's Ukraine's ties should be

investigated, murky. All right, look make more detail. Imagine about these academic, whose description matches that of a key player in the

Papadopoulos story. I know you are on that, he is Joseph (inaudible) you been talking to a source who knows him. What is the source telling you?

NIC ROBERTSON, SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CNN CORRESPONDENT: You know, Joseph (inaudible) also known apparently as the professor was running schools for

diplomacy in London, the London Academy for Diplomacy, the London Academy for major diplomacy, the international London law practice as well. My

source, whose known resourceful for several years now, describes him as a man with very clear pro-Russian views and also a man who set them up with a

meeting with George Papadopoulos at early April last year, the second week of April last year. He arranged for my source and Papadopoulos to meet.

They met in the context that Papadopoulos was a foreign policy advisor for the then candidate Trump. My source describes that meeting as you know one

way he realizes what he comes to see Papadopoulos as he says a nice guy, but man who is not particularly au fait with a lot of sort of indebt

foreign policy issues of the world and describes him and was concerned that Papadopoulos to him did not really seem to have an in-depth knowledge and

seem to be an odd fit for a foreign policy advisor to a potential future U.S. president, but this source also describe more conversations.

He said not only just pro-Russian but sort of liking to promote himself as having good connections with the likes of President Putin attended meetings

even been to some of a large dinner by President Putin and would talk about that was a in a way so showing off, if you like about his about his

connections, but he also said the source also said that (inaudible) told him that they Russian the Russia meeting the Russians had a lots of stuff

on Hillary Clinton. All this was coming about the tea time, a teatime to the FBI of Papadopoulos's meetings with the professor in London, sort of

early mid-April last year.

ANDERSON: Mixed in London, curses in Ukraine, we are connecting the world. I am going to get you back to Washington to both of you. Thank you. Where

President Trump is lashing out on Twitter bashing the credibility of said George Papadopoulos, a man he once called and excellent guy and once again

blaming the media. The fake news is working overtime as Paul Manafort's noise that there was no collusion and events mentioned took place long

before he came to the campaign. The people knew the on low-level volunteer named George who has already proven to be a liar. Check the Dems. And

there is the exclamation mark. The U.S. president like to see at the end of his tweets.

[11:10:36] CNN has learn Mr. Trump was surprise in any of us when he heard about Papadopoulos, Joe Johns tells us what happens at the president watch

developments unfolds.


JOE JOHNS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: President Trump was ceding as he watch the news play out on TV about the Mueller investigation according to a source

close to the White House. The source telling CNN that the president expected the indictments of former campaign chairman Paul Manafort and aide

Rick Gates, but was surprised by the revelation that another aide George Papadopoulos pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI and is cooperating with

authorities. Mr. Trump spent much of the day hunkered down with his legal team and White House private residence, growing increasingly frustrated

after seeing video amount of work arriving at the FBI field office to turn himself in. Publicly the administration attempted to downplay the charges.


JOHN KELLY, SECRETARY OF HOMELAND SECURITY: The reaction of the administration is with the legal justice system work everyone so innocent

or presumed innocent and we will see where it goes.


JOHNS: The president's lawyer Ty Cobb telling CNN that Mister Trump has not responded to the Papadopoulos news, because he does not know it, but

back in 2016. Mister Trump touted him as part of his foreign policy team in an interview with the Washington Post.


DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Papadopoulos is an oil and energy consultant, excellent vetting.


JOHNS: And this photo from March 2016 shows Papadopoulos sitting at the same table as then candidate Trump and the national security meeting the

White House Press Secretary attending to distance the president from his former advisor.


HUCKABEE SANDERS: It was extremely limited. It was a volunteer position and again no activity was ever done in an official capacity on behalf of

the campaign.


JOHNS: Sanders, falsely claiming that Mueller's charges are unrelated to Mister Trump.


HUCKABEE SANDERS: Today's announcement has nothing to do with the president has nothing to do with the president's campaign or campaign



JOHNS: A source familiar with former chief strategist Steve Bannon's thinking tell CNN he is urging the president to fight back aggressively

against Mueller with a massive public relations campaign by getting congressional Republicans to engage and going to court over documents being

requested, the president's aides, insisting Mister Trump has no plans to take action against the special counsel.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The president is not is not interfering with the process special counsel Mueller's opposition, he is not firing the special

counsel. He said that before.



ANDERSON: Joe is joining us now live from Washington with the very latest and distract and discredit that seems to be the tactic from the White House

at this point. It is not one that we are unfamiliar with and in the past year also and effective, Joe?

JOHNS: Well certainly true that they are going after George Papadopoulos with digger. In fact, speaking to a source who is familiar with the

president's legal team this morning, I will just read you some of the quotes, somebody about a prosecutor does not want to put off whose

underlying crime is lying, as far as they know Papadopoulos only went to one meeting. The guy was there for a cup of coffee. He is quote a fantasy

without a platform as far as any legal case goes and has quote a wholesale lack of significance to the campaign. So clearly in the case of this

foreign policy advisor for the campaign they are going after him with all they got.

ANDERSON: Joe Johns is at the White House for you and Joe thank you, there are many, many things that we do know right now, but there are two things

we definitely do know President Trump is really, really angry about all of this and a whole lot more to come. We look at what that may be ahead this

hour. First up though, just what is Catalonia ousted president doing Brussels of all places, did he break? We are live in Barcelona picking up

what is yet another major political crisis.


[11:17:07] ANDERSON: Welcome back to really big morning political stories for you this hour. The opening of the (inaudible) investigation into

possible Russian collusion in the U.S. election campaign last year consuming Washington and all together the different, but equally as

divisive story at the Barcelona in Spain. That is political crisis that is being gripping the country to fall out from Catalonia's failed attempt to

claim independence. You are watching Connect the World, I am Becky Anderson. Facing charges of rebellion and 30 years in prison, the ousted

Catalan president, pop up, a long way from home today in Brussels. The speculation was seeking political asylum, an idea he quickly shut down.

Have a listen to this.


CARLES PUIGDEMONT, PRESIDENT OF CATALONIA (TRANSLATOR): Brussels capital of Europe, this is a matter of Belgium politics. And here in order to act

this freedom and safety.


ANDERSON: To act with freedom and safety, CNN Phil Black joins us from Barcelona a city any reason that Puigdemont used to run some speculation

that he was affecting the under run as it were earlier on today. Speculation that he know what he is doing in Brussels and what is going

where you are back home?

PHIL BLACK, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Here it is remarkably calm silver people that huge extraordinary unilateral declaration of independence on Friday

really everyone has been looking to see what Carles Puigdemont would do next, particularly after he and his government were sack, we are all very

surprised yesterday to learn that he was in Brussels of all places. He said he is not there seeking asylum, despite the rumor, despite his lawyer

are saying well it is an option for him and what he is there doing, he says, he is continuing the fight for Catalonian independence. And in doing

so he is doing in an environment that he believes his safe and free where he believes his right would be respected.

That is not possible here in Spain. He insist he is not a fugitive from justice what he is saying is that he doesn't think that the judicial system

as it is being applied to him now is particularly fair and he release (inaudible) harsh rebellion in the sedition at prison terms that you

mentioned potentially 30 years is being treated like a terrorist. He says anything remotely violent at all. So at the same time he entirely

indicated whether or not he will consent to that judicial process, whether or not he will come back. A key point that he made is that he and his

colleagues will contest when the regional election on December 21st.

[11:20:15] In effect they are accepting the fact that they had been sack. He still see himself as the legitimate leader. They are not there to fight

Spain by trying to prevent the controlling this region but they are going to contest the election they say they will respect the results, what they

want is the Spanish government in Madrid to give the same assurance. They will respect the results of the regional election whatever the outcome.

ANDERSON: Phil Black is in Barcelona for you on the story. Thank you Phil. Let's get you up to speed on some the other stories and all and

making all radar right now, Palestinian officials say at least eight people were killed when the Israeli military blew up a tunnel leading to Israel

from Gaza, now mourners march into the street carrying the bodies of the deceased. The strike comes just two days before control of Gaza borders

crossing is set to pass from Hamas to the Palestinian Authority. U.S. forces of captive (inaudible) Imam in Libya, he was wanted for his alleged

role in the 2012 Benghazi attack that killed four American. (Inaudible) on that the attack suspected mastermind is currently on trial in Washington

Ima will be transferred to the U.S. for prosecution, but it is still unclear when.

Kenyan president Uhuru Kenyatta has been reelected after securing of a 98 percent of the votes in a displeasing new election. The race was boycotted

by the opposition rivals by sporadic bouts of deadly violence. It has been 16 years since the 9/11 terrorist attacks in the U.S. handed the

president's military authorization target those responsible, but now covers anti-terror operations in more than a dozen countries operations,

unconnected to 9/11. Some U.S. lawmakers and human rights groups say it is time to let Congress review when and where anti-terror forces are deployed,

but Donald Trump foreign secretary and his Defense secretary saying that would hurt U.S. assets warning the Senate Foreign Relations Committee of

operational paralysis. One of those countries in the expanded authorization is Niger. Sites on the recent ambush that soar four American

and five Nigerian soldiers killed.

In a CNN exclusive international correspondent Arwa Damon went to the village. Navy sites of the attack. And she joined us now what did you

learned Arwa?

ARWA DAMON, SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT, CNN: Well Becky we went to the site to try to get a better understanding of just what the terrain is

like around it. The terrain where the area and then felt come across a fair number of attacks and also try to get some answers to the many

remaining question.


DAMON: In this vast terrain (inaudible) factions that worried the Nigerian soldiers most. It is an ideal cover for an ambush. We are headed back to

the site of the attack that the strongest remote border region into a global spotlight. October 4th America's first casualties here but not

Niger. There are patrols regularly come under attack. The ground outside tango, tango is carrying heavy powered machine guns. And we ask the

soldiers we are with, if they know they were fired by American or Nigerian forces.

They can't be entirely sure, because they sue similar weapons, they said. We are inly given ten minutes on the ground in the village. People are

terrified, confused and reluctant to talk. We track down the detained village, uncle an older brother and they insist the attackers came from

elsewhere. Initial reports for that attack occurs from 10 km outside of (inaudible). After the convoy stop and villagers stalled them. American

and Nigerian convoy never actually stop here that they just drove through the village and then when they hit the very outskirt battle when they heard

the first gunshots. There are signs of the attack everywhere.

Burned down in the attack a single classroom after wrap it up right now that because our escorts are understandably quite anxious about spending

too much time on scene, they can see how close it was to the village. They had even made it out. Weeks after the attack. Many questions remain. And

so to the threat.


[11:2509] DAMON: And Becky as we were driving away from a different direction than the one that we approach the village and we also saw another

location right along one of the tracks where there were also a number of heavy machine gun caliber bullet casings. The U.S. perhaps at this stage

going to have revive how it operates on the ground in Niger, Niger Caruso, will tell you to its counterterrorism operations in the region, because of

its strategic location. It was not until now considered to be a relatively stable country in the midst of what the U.S. military called a ring of

instability. We have the growing ISIS threat in Libya to the north to the South, you have Boco Haram and to the West you have Al Qaeda and the

Islamic (inaudible) and ISIS.

ANDERSON: Arwa Damon on the ground in Niger. Thank you Arwa. From Niger all the way to Moscow, Trump has files and files of problem, normal weapon

against them. Firing up Twitter, my next guest maybe running out of luck there. This time around we are back to it, up next.


ANDERSON: Are you happy or maybe not so Happy Halloween in Washington the ghosts of election past taunting the calls of power and its most powerful

man, well maybe not him, but maybe more like him. Striking frights all over town Robert Mueller in charge clearing through possible Russian of

webs American last presidential pics spooking the White House up a tree. And its trick after trick for Donald Trump. So far the biggest of them all

is so far these new documents got open for the very first time. Donald Trump campaign almost falling over itself to work with Russia on urging

Hillary Clinton. George Papadopoulos, a former Trump campaign manager but we now know it was keen to work with Russia, now right off the back

pleading guilty to lying to the FBI about meetings with Moscow.

Two other close leading Trump, too, under house arrest for breaking laws not related as to be said to Russia. Well, remember for months now, a lot

of what I have just told you were allegations, suspicion, well now they are facts.


ANDERSON: With us, CNN's Stephen Collinson and Joan Biskupic, she has been covering the U.S. Supreme Court for more than 25 years, more than we will

ever know. She is writing several books along the way.

Stephen, to you first, this is Halloween after all. So Trump characterizing this as a witch hunt. Forgive me for stretching this too

far but the core of this really beginning to boil away now. Firstly and briefly, as he dealing with this?

STEPHEN COLLINSON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, I think the White House is clearly very off balance on this after the revelations we had yesterday.

And one of the reasons is that normal methods that Trump uses to navigate through political crises, tweeting, putting other people off balance,

disruption, chaos, then other work in this context because he is facing the immutable facts of the law.

He cannot just come up with alternative facts which is what he does in most political arguments and he is facing a prosecutor, Robert Mueller who is

one of the most experienced and methodical, and relentless prosecutors of his generation.

And I think that is one reason and what we saw yesterday was the first charges being publicized in this case, the White House does not quite know

how to deal with this and its political explanations are not going to be enough to get Trump and the Trump campaign out of his hole.

ANDERSON: That's a descent take away, the fact that Trump and you pointed this out in your most recent article, he can't tweet his way out of this.

What are the key takeaways do you think so far and what sort of an opening style, this is overhaul, isn't it, to what will be one seems a very, very

long investigation. It is not want and done at this point.

COLLINSON: Right. I think there are two other key points. One of them is that the White House had been hoping to get this out of the way quickly, so

that Trump can get on to the rest of the items on his agenda. That is clearly not going to happen.

We know some of the transcript of the hearing into the plea deal by George Papadopoulos, the foreign policy advisor who pled guilty that the Special

Counsel's team, saying his case is just a small corner of a much wider case investigation there, looking into about alleged Russian collusion in the


The other one and I think this is very interesting, there is now from the court documents we saw yesterday, yet more evidence of a concerted Russian

attempt to approach members of the Trump campaign during the election year to try to give them unflattering details about Hillary Clinton from her

hacked emails.

Does this really on the cuffs, the president's argument that this is nothing more than a hoax, a big drama dreamt up by Democrats because they

are angry about the election result that is really uncut -- undercuts the White House's key argument here, it is no longer possible to argue.

I think that the Russians did not interfere in the election as the president has been doing for the entirety of his administration.

ANDERSON: To you, Joan, let's not forget that Robert Mueller's Justice Department probe is just one of several looking into Russia's alleged

meddling in the U.S. election. Three Congressional committees also investigate including the Senate Intelligence Committee.

The panels are interviewing intelligence officials of former current Trump officials, unlike these Congressional committees. The FBI is part of the

Justice Department privately, power to bring criminal charges and only Special Counsel Mueller does have the power to prosecute crimes based on

his investigation.

For those of our international viewers, who are not as aligned with -- with the powers that Special Counsel Robert Mueller has, can you just enlighten

us somewhat briefly.


ANDERSON: I am getting imaginations in the weeds here but just probably kind of overarching view if you will.

BISKUPIC: Sure and I'm not going to get you into the weeds. I'm going to get you right back to his documents of yesterday because I think for any of

your viewers, you would see right there what his power is.

[11:35:00] First of all, the power of using the grand jury to bring the indictment against Mr. Manafort and Mr. Gates on the money-laundering

conspiracy not been registered to do foreign lobbying, all very potent charges there but then also in the document that, Stephen , just referred

to against George Papadopoulos.

He laid out for out -- first of all, it's an agreement. This is not just allegations and that one that is where we have somebody agree that he -- he

is conceding that he lied. And he is taking -- he has become a cooperating witness there with consequences.

I'm sure for many others down the road where Special Counsel Mueller will be able to do further investigating with the FBI and bring further charges.

So what he will do in the end though, just -- do you want to go or...


BISKUPIC: OK. I'm just going to say in the end...

ANDERSON: No, no, go on. Go on.

BISKUPIC: He will probably continue to bring charges as we go along, but at the very end, he can -- he can end up also presenting something to

Congress perhaps that could lead to any kind of impeachment. But that is getting out of the head of the story, but his mandate is very broad and he

has a lot of muscle.

ANDERSON: Let me just run something by you here because this is important and I think will help our viewers work things out. Stand by, Stephen.

Joan, Paul Manafort being prosecuted on a foreign lobbying law, the Foreign Agents Registration Act, known as FARA.

Now, journalist can fill the signs says, this law is usually never enforced and he writes in Politico, in September 2016, the Department of Justice

issued a report that tallied all the prosecutions on the FARA since 1966, a total of seven.

Only one of the individuals charged was convicted at trial. According to reports, two pleaded guilty, two FARA charges, tow are convicted are non-

FARA charges and two saw their case dismissed.

An important reason for this lack of enforcement is that there are virtually no enforces. So break it down for us. What kind of sentencing

could Manafort be facing if this goes to trial?

And do you agree with Silverstein's conclusion that, if he had not been Trump's campaign manager, Manafort would not have been investigating, he

writes in his article. If you're going to indictment prosecute lobbyist but failing to disclose their activities, well behalf of Washington would

be under arrest.

BISKUPIC: Well, I don't know if that is true but it looks like, according to this 31 page 12 count indictment that there were many serious reasons to

be investigating all Manafort beyond his role in the campaign.

Now certainly, his role in the campaign put him very much in the spotlight. He was a campaign manager, very closely tied to Donald Trump. But when you

look through the 12th counts, it's -- you don't -- again, he has pleaded not guilty to this.

So I want to make sure that's on the table but let's just take them as alleged. It wasn't just non-registering, it's using the money that he

funnel then to offshore accounts to purchase things here.

Some fraud charges, as I said, money-laundering, other conspiracy here, so the -- the lack of registration, the unregistered lobbying, sure that is

one of the accounts and I cannot address how often it has been prosecuted and who has ended up convicted.

But at this point, Robert Mueller appears to believe that well definitely believes he can make case or he wouldn't laid it out there and again, we

haven't -- there has been nothing beyond yesterday's document drop.

But it doesn't seem to be on the fringe. It doesn't seem to be frivolous, but certainly Paul Manafort and Rick Gates will have their day in court.

ANDERSON: Yes, sure. All right. Stephen, Donald Trump tweets then the news hand us to lose his mind pouring over every word has been a familiar

pattern. But just the last hour or so, he tried doing that again, pushing towards what he apparently sees as the story on Monday.

He is totally wrong when he has attended taking over the news frankly really quite transparent. This is a story Trump can't even begin to

contain, right?

COLLINSON: No, I mean, this is one thing where the president is not in control of this. It is very interesting what we are seeing already today.

It is an attempt by the White House to downplay the role of this guy, George Papadopoulos, one of Trump's allies was CNN and the United States

this morning saying he was nothing more than a coffee boy.

The problem with that approach is twofold. First of all there is documentation that show him in contact with a senior member of the campaign

talking about the opportunity that the Russians gave him to set up a meeting with officials of the Trump campaign.

[11:40:00] The second thing is, Mueller's mandate is to look to see whether there was any cooperation between the Trump campaign, anyone involved with

it and the Russians. It doesn't matter in that context as the White House is saying that this was just a junior member of volunteer who had nothing

really to do with the high excellence of the campaign.

That is irrelevant as far as the mandates of Mueller is concerned, so that is one way the White House is going to be unable to control how his goes.

ANDERSON: Stephen, Joan, great having you both on, come again, and really useful for the international viewer and we thank you, excellent pieces from

both our guests.

Up on the website, Stephen, reckoning that Donald Trump is pretty trapped this time around and just has to sit back, and let Mueller leave the web

around and that doesn't sound like the Trump we know, does it?

Also the Americans, the Russians and the professor, Joan, explores all the intrigued for you, that on the digital page. We are getting you inside

into how Russian internet trolls try to influence of these Americans during the 2016 election.

Facebook says content paid for by Russia could have reached as many as 126 million Americans, that more than half of all U.S. bases. It came from a

Russian troll farm which is linked to the government.

Twitter says it discovered nearly 3,000 accounts linked to the same source and overall, more than 36,000 account appeared to be tied to Russia posting

automated election related content. Lawyers for Facebook, Twitter and Google are to testify at public U.S. Senate hearings this week.

Well, the lawyers will get grills about whether Russians tried to become involved in the 2016 campaign and that raises questions over the role tech

giants play in controlling what we can see online.

In our new series, Divided we Code, CNN's Laurie Segall explores how Silicon Valley tries to find the balance between free speech and

censorship. Have a look at this.


ANDREW MCLAUGHLIN, FORMER DEPUTY CHIEF TECHNOLOGY OFFICER, UNITED STATES: For the internet, we built this incredible common space, platforms like

Facebook and Twitter were created blogging platforms where anybody could show up and speak.


MCLAUGHLIN: Economist for 100 years have had this principle which is called the tragedy of the comments that says if you have a common space, a

park and anybody can go and use it without controls, the tragedy will be that that space gets trashed.

SEGALL: Fast forward to the internet today, social networks promise to democratize information but in the last year, Russians bought ads on

Facebook to target voters, and in between election. An army of bots are spreading propaganda through Twitter and hate speech in going viral turning


The virtual town square is getting overrun. As a result, these platforms are falling into an uncomfortable role as the gate keepers of content.

Matthew Prince is the founder of CloudFlare, a company that helps protect websites from attacks. Either, I woke up in a bad mood and decided,

someone should be allowed on the internet, no one should have that power, what a strong statement.

MATTHEW PRINCE, CO-FOUNDER AND CEO, CLOUDFLARE: We kicked them off at some level because they were jerks and I think we have the right to pick and

choose who we do business with.

SEGALL: The customer he's talking about, a neo-Nazis site, The Daily Stormer.

PRINCE: But I do think it's important for us to have a conversation about what the responsibilities of commerce are on the internet.

SEGALL: The decision was a trigger and the request started pouring in.

PRINCE: Since that time have been calls for over 3,500 different CloudFlare customers to be terminated. I worry that having made this one

decision is going to be harder for us to push back against those others.

SEGALL: Being the referee of free speech is complicated. Just ask Twitter co-founder and Medium CEO, Ev Williams.

EV WILLIAMS, CEO, MEDIUM: Some people are calling to needs to the editorial guidelines and you get into an area where most tech companies

feels like, it's not something that really fits in our modeler that we would even be good at.

SEGALL: Increasingly, you guys, whether or not you like it, you have to make some decisions on our kind of editorial. What do you say?

WILLIAMS: There are adjustments being made all the way down the line. There are judgments about how the algorithm works, what the system values,

what the feedback loops are.

SEGALL: While tech companies have the right to make these decisions, there is the question of transparency.

WILLIAMS: And we could have done it differently. We could have just said, they violated Section 13 of our terms of service and...


MCLAUGHLIN: And that's kind of BS, right?

WILLIAMS: By the way, it will be BS if we did it and it's BS when any other technology does that and that's the point which is important. There

are arbitrary decisions that get made in this and there are editorials decision that gets made at us, we should own those editorial decisions.


[11:45:00] ANDERSON: That part of CNN Money's Divided We Code series from sexual harassment using social media as a weapon, Silicon Valley reaching a

breaking point.

Well you can find more of Laurie Segall's reporting on politics, power, and harassment in of most influential communities on earth at for

Divided We Code culture in the tech world. You are watching Connect the World. I'm Becky Anderson.

We are live out of Abu Dhabi for you, it is quarter to 8:00 here from our Middle Eastern hub. Coming up, Kevin Spacey's House of Cards T.V. will

soon be coming to an end. Is that because of a new sexual misconduct accusation? What we are hearing about is up next.


ANDERSON: All right, just after quarter to 8:00 here in the UAE. I'm Becky Anderson. You are watching Connect the World. If you are just

joining us, as ever you are more than welcome. Well actor Kevin Spacey's response to sexual misconduct allegations is getting into even more



ANDERSON: Well, Spacey is accused to making a path of fellow actor, Anthony Rapp -- Anthony Rapp when Rapp was just 14 days. Spacey said he

doesn't remember the incidents but apologizes if it is true.

In the same statement, Spacey said that he is gay, that has his critics accusing him of trying to use homosexuality as an excuse of some sort.

Well, Spacey T.V. series House of Cards will end after the current season but sources say, that decision was made months ago. CNN Brynn Gingras is

following the story from New York. Brynn.

BRYNN GINGRAS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Becky, I mean really, it's not the apology but the admission that is really getting all of this attention on

Twitter and all of this criticism against Kevin Spacey.

As you have laid it out for your viewers, Kevin Spacey posted an apology after that actor Anthony Rapp, who is a famous T.V. film and Broadway actor

said he was sexually harassed by Kevin Spacey more than 30 years ago when Rapp would have been 14-years-old.

Kevin Spacey would have been 26 and as Kevin Spacey said he doesn't remember the incident. He said that, you know, pin it on drunken behavior

but then, in the next paragraph of his apology, he came out as gay.

And saying that he wanted to go deal with this honesty and openly and that starts with examining his own behavior and that's the issue there. Critics

are saying you can't conflate that, too. You can't conflate sexual harassment with being open and coming out as gay.

And that really what's frustrated people of Vanity Fair, movie critic Richard Lawson was among the crowd of people who have been criticizing

Spacey saying quote, this exposes the gay community to and million a tired old criticisms and conspiracies.

[11:50:00] How dare you implicate us all and so there had been awake of controversy here, Becky. We know that the international Academy which

recognizes intelligent produced of the United States.

They decided not to get Kevin Spacey a Founder's Award, and as you mentioned Netflix as well, they are also canceling the series although not

pinning it directly onto what has been going on with Kevin Spacey himself. Becky.

ANDERSON: All right, well, thank you for that, another high profile sexual misconduct controversy unfolding. In Britain, Theresa May has ordered an

investigation of one of her trade ministers Mark Garnier admits addressing his personal assistant with a sexual slur and asking her to buy sex toys

for him.

But an interview with a British news paper, he insisted it wasn't harassment just quote, good-humored high jinx. You are watching Connect

the World. I'm Becky Anderson, coming two Papadopoulos, one in trouble with the FBI, the other in Greece enjoying his mother's cooking. That's



ANDERSON: Lots in a name, Shakespeare muse would not a rose smell just as sweet if it were by any other, well, we got news for you, the barge who

were on Twitter mate.

But George Papadopoulos -- Papadopoulos, here you go, is in fact quite a few of them are. In today, I'm happy to say, I had mastered all out until

just now, other so as Jeanne Moos show us, us getting to grip with it.


JEANNE MOOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: His name is on everybody's lips


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The role of Papadopoulos.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Versus George Papadopoulos.

MOOS: It's a mouth full.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: George Papadopoulos -- Papadopoulos.

MOOS: But instead of just pronouncing it wrong, imagine calling Papadopoulos a real slime ball, this George Papadopoulos was having a bad

day on Twitter because he shares the name of the Trump who lied to the FBI.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Let me tell you about Papadopoulos.

MOOS: The wrong Papadopoulos is a certified financial advisor and he is getting tweets like, why are you helping the Russians and you are going to

jail for a very long time, dude.

In response, the wrong George has been using exclamation points a lot for the nth time, I am not Trump's foreign policy advisor. I have no

association with the Trump camp, none!

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: A complaint says George Papadopoulos...

MOOS: The wrong Papadopoulos complained on Monday suck in general, but this one is off the scales, when someone tweeted perhaps joking, can't wait

to watch you try to wriggle out of this one.

The wrong George replied, I am not that guy, visiting my mother in Greece now and can assure you I am getting so fat eating the dishes she makes me,

so no wiggling. Dishes like this one. George recalled the old TV show Webster.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I want you to meet my husband George Papadopoulos.

MOOS: George tweeted, I used to hate it. Now, it does not seem bad. What's bad is having to say it on TV.

[11:55:00] UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Tell us first of all more about the case against George Stephanopoulos -- Papadopoulos, I should say.

MOOS: Stephanopoulos -- Papadopoulos both George. The best tweet came from a certain John Kelly who shares the name of president's chief of staff

tweeted the wrong Kelly to the wrong Papadopoulos, I feel your pain George. Jeanne Moos, CNN, New York.


ANDERSON: Well, we like to have some fun sometimes did you know here on CNN. It is facts first. For more from us, the face of international news

on the Middle East, well, there's U.S. politics independence base on arts and culture, you can find all here, That is

Get involved. I'm Becky Anderson. That was Connect the World. Thank you for watching, from the team working with me here and around the world on

Connect the World, thank you for watching. We will see you tomorrow.