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#MeToo Founder to Kick Off NYE Celebrations in NYC; Safe Zone Set Up For Women in Berlin; Defector Details North Korean Smuggling Operations. Aired 7:30-8a ET

Aired December 31, 2017 - 07:30   ET


VICTOR BLACKWELL, CNN ANCHOR: Of course, we know many of the videos, much the reporting we are getting out of Iran comes through social media. We saw this in 2009 with the green revolution there as well.

[07:30:01] These videos we are seeing in cities across the country, these anti-government protests, many of this reporting, these videos, are coming through applications, apps like Telegram. But, again, this request coming to the founder of Telegram saying that they are blocking access to the mantle of Iranians after they refuse to do shut down. We will bring you the latest as this story develops across Iran.


CHRISTI PAUL, CNN ANCHOR: This year's countdown to 2018 is putting the me-too movement front and here. Tonight, #MeToo founder Tarana Burke is pushing the button for the ball to drop in New York City's Times Square. Her movement inspired so many women in entertainment, in Washington. You and me walking around Main Street to come forward with stories of sexual assault and workplace harassment.

She shared the news on Twitter saying, in part: With the New York comes new momentum to fuel this work and we won't stop anytime soon.

Tarana Burke with us now.

Tarana, good to see you. Happy New Year almost.


PAUL: So, when you got that call that said, hey, why don't you push the button, what did you think? Take me to that moment.

BURKE: Well, it was an email, actually. And I did not believe it at first because, you know, who does that ever happen to? And then kind of calmed down and realized it was the real thing, I thought this is incredible.

PAUL: Speaking of incredible. I mean, what we have seen develop the last three or four months has just -- it seems turned so many things on their heads here. I'm wondering, what are your hopes, based on just what we have seen in the last three or four months, what are your hopes, your goals for 2018? BURKE: You know, I really hope that people are ready for the work

that has to happen in 2018 and I hope people understand that this is not a flash in the pan and that what happened at the tail end of 2017 was just catalyst for the work that will happen in 2018.

So, my goal for 2018 is continue to build out the work that we already had started and figure out better ways to support survivors, because largely what we have been seeing is a lot of conversation about perpetrators, but I think the focus should be on survivorship and what they need.

PAUL: And what do they need? Help people understand what survivors need.

BURKE: Well, it varies, right? I'm not -- people ask this question all the time and I'm one individual person and I've met thousands of people who have survived sexual violence and people need different things. But one of the things that we need is to speak in unison. We need to have people believe us and when we speak up and talk about the things that have happened to us, people need to take it seriously.

But we need legislative action. We need civic action. We need things to happen on the ground in our communities and in Washington, D.C.

PAUL: So, on the anniversary of the women's march, organizers are going to launch power to the polls. This is a national voter registration and mobilization campaign that will target swing states.

What do you think are the implications of this movement and power to the polls to the midterms when we look into 2018?

BURKE: Well, I think 2017 has been a full gear-up heading toward the midterm election. The women's march set it off last year and started in 2017 with a powerful statement to the world that women would be heard both in the United States and around the world. So I think the momentum that came off the women's march and ending the year with the me-too movement is just going to propel us forward into the midterm election and we're going to see a lot of women running for office and we're going to see a lot of people who -- men running for office understand they have to take women's issues seriously and I think power to the poll is going to make a powerful statement about the changes we need to make.

PAUL: You said that you've talked to thousands of women, obviously, over the years but particularly in the last few months. What are you -- is there one overriding theme, feeling, thought that you hear from them that you're taking into 2018 with you as a motivator?

BURKE: You know what? So many women have reached out to me and actually not just women. I've had women, children, men -- I've had so many people, different kind of people reach out to me and the overarching thing is that people feel free. People have had the freedom to release their stories and to be heard and believe, and that freedom has propelled them so many different ways and that is really, really fundamentally what this work is about. It's about survivors supporting one another and giving people permission to start their healing.

PAUL: Well, Tarana Burke, good luck tonight and enjoy it. It is such a special moment. Not everybody gets to do it. You're absolutely right.

And we will be talking to I'm sure more in 2018. Thanks for all you do.

BURKE: Thank you so much.

PAUL: Sure.


BLACKWELL: All right. To Germany, an extra 1,600 police officers on hand for New Year's Eve celebrations. The German capital is also taking certain safety measures for women with a safe zone near Brandenburg Gate.

Journalist Chris Burns is live in Berlin.

Of course, this comes in the context what have we saw last year. What are we seeing different this year to add some safety measures?

CHRIS BURNS, JOURNALIST: Yes, slightly different. Over my shoulder, Victor, are two tents that belong to the Red Cross and they will have a sign there on the fence that surrounds it saying women safety area. That is just to reassure women that they have a place to go if something happens.

Now, you look back two years ago when hundreds of women were sexually attacked, harassed, some of them raped in Cologne. That's in western Germany, hundreds of them. Over here, it didn't happen the same way. It was just a few women were harassed.

But they do want to take that precaution any way, along with the rest of the security in light of what happened two years ago, and thinking about what happened one year ago with the truck attack on a Christmas market that kills a dozen people here. They want to increase -- keep the security very tight. They're not allowing anybody with bags.

They're about to open this up in any minute now to allow people to come in, to start to fill that fan mile. It is 1.2 miles between Brandenburg Gate and the Victory Column.

So, it's going to be a huge -- hundreds of thousands of people. And so, there is this post here but there are also four other tents spread -- Red Cross tents spread across the area to make sure if anybody is hurt, if anything happens, there are people, there 140 personnel from the Red Cross here to help them -- Victor.

BLACKWELL: All right. Journalist Chris Burns for us there in Berlin -- Chris, thanks so much.

BURNS: Thank you. PAUL: So amid reports and growing evidence that China and Russia are

flouting U.N. sanctions by selling oil to North Korea. We're going to take you inside the reclusive regime's sophisticated smuggling operation.


[07:40:46] BLACKWELL: So, in a few hours, it will go midnight in North Korea. And as 2018 begins, state-run television had a special New Year's message praising Kim Jong-un's achievements in the face of America's opposition. North Korea just released this video of Kim in a celebratory concert attended by a lot of the senior North Korean leaders including Kim's sister. Kim used it as an opportunity to reaffirm North Korea's emergence as a capable nuclear threat to the U.S.

PAUL: North Korean has defied U.N. sanctions and restrictions in the past. Well, now, a North Korean defector tells CNN the regime has a sophisticated smuggling network and can easily trade in banned goods.

CNN's Brian Todd has more.


BRIAN TODD, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): August 2016 a freighter called the "Jie Shun" is intercepted heading to the Suez Canal. Underneath 2,000 tons of iron ore onboard, around 30,000 rocket- propelled grenades made in North Korea, part of what a North Korean defector describes as a spider web of smuggling to line the pockets of Kim Jong-Un.

(on camera): How do North Korean smuggling operations work? Are there people, with false names, are there ships with false names being moved around?

RI JONG HO, NORTH KOREAN DEFECTOR (through translation): The smuggling is conducted by any and every means you could imagine. Larger items are mostly done using ships, for example, by filing the cargo list, where what is written is different from what is really being shipped.

TODD (voice-over): For decades, Ri Jong Ho was a top wrangler of cash for Kim Jong-Un's regime. He says he would sometimes hand bags of cash to ship captains leaving from China where he was stationed for North Korea.

Ri defected in 2014. He says he worked mostly in legal imports and exports, but also gave us insight into North Korea's smuggling operation, which he describes as being almost unstoppable.

RI (through translation): On the open sea, the Yellow Sea, there are hundreds of fishing boats, both from China and North Korea. And all the smuggling is done by these so-called fishing boats. Instead of fishing, they are involved in smuggling. And it's very difficult, even for China, to stop these hundreds of fishing boats. TODD: According to the U.N. and outside analysts, Kim's regime sells weapons on the black market, uses its diplomats to move illegal drugs, like methamphetamine. They've trafficked in counterfeit American dollars, fake Viagra, even endangered species.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Kim Jong-Un really sits atop a criminal network that would make Don Corleone or Tony Soprano proud.

TODD: New U.S. sanctions are aimed at tightening limits on North Korean shipping to stop the flow of illicit goods leaving and arriving in North Korea. Those might include luxury items for Kim and his inner circle, like that well-known Mercedes limo, which the supreme leader is often seen stepping out of.

RI (through translation): The Mercedes Benzes, for example, provided for the leader, they're not legally imported. They're being smuggled in.

TODD: The cash that Ri was so good at getting to his boss, experts say, pays for Kim's weapons and buys off top generals and others to keep them from turning on him.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He has to maintain political loyalty and so he needs sort of walking-around money to hand out.

TODD (on camera): North Korean officials at the U.N. have denied that their government engages in smuggling.

As for our interview with Ri Jong Ho, a North Korean official says the defector is telling lies to make money and to save his own life.

Brian Todd, CNN, Washington.


PAUL: All righty. So, guess what? There is a new super hero coming to town. Actually, lots of new movies to look forward to. We're going to talk about the big blockbusters coming up in 2018.


[07:45:49] PAUL: So, Walt Sutton (ph) may only be 7 years old. But he's already inspiring people, because he's been raising money online for various causes since he was 5. And we caught up with him during his drive to help the homeless.


CELINA GOMES, MOTHER: What did you raise money for?


GOMES: I always feel like I sound like a bragging parent when I talk about him but he is a really special, special kid. He really genuinely is happy when other people are happy.

UNIDENTIFIED BOY: Do you want me to put together a complete bag of toys for you?

GOMES: We were experiencing the devastating fires in northern California and he starred ted to get very worried. I'm worried about the people who lost their homes. He says I want to raise money for St. Anthony's Winter Shelter when it gets cold. He said because there's even more homeless people now.

UNIDENTIFIED BOY: Put it up on the internet and there is a link to it. Then you donate.

UNIDENTIFIED GIRL: The new grand total is, $10,452!

UNIDENTIFIED BOY: The money I donated gives the shelter more money to buy beds.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It's tremendously inspiring, especially for someone so young to have that understanding that people need help. So, it speaks very well for our future.

GOMES: Do you feel like you're changing the world?

UNIDENTIFIED BOY: Let's call it an even 50/50.



PAUL: I'm sorry, I'm still laughing.

BLACKWELL: I just said, we were talking about movies, and I said, I don't know what the hell is coming up next year. I don't. But I know there are new movies coming out, something for everyone, I hear.

[07:50:01] PAUL: We've got blockbuster sequels. We've got a bunch of stuff from Disney. We've got a new superhero.

And so, let's talk to Evy Carroll about this. She's movie critic for "Movieguide."

Thank you so much for being here, Evy. First and foremost, talk to us about some new superheroes.

EVY CARROLL, MOVIE CRITIC, MOVIEGUIDE: Yes, 2018 is going to be an amazing year for movie. We're super excited.

"Black Panther", which is you were kind of mentioning before, he is doing something new because it's the new black, you know, comic. And so, it has been around since a long time. They wanted to do this movie since '97. So fans are super excited.

Chadwick Boseman, he plays the main character. He is going into the king role and he's got to figure out how to fight darkness and evil. And so, we are excited about "Black Panther" coming up January 16th. So, that's the next Marvels movie coming out.

PAUL: "Incredibles 2". CARROLL: "Incredibles 2" --

PAUL: Tell me about "Incredibles 2" because the first one was quite the hit. And Pixar is always just so remarkable.

CARROLL: Pixar is awesome, the quality is always there, that's for sure. We love "Incredibles 1." This is "Incredibles 2", like you said.

The lead is going to be Jack, the newborn you see on camera. He is first. Hitting his powers. His dad, Mr. Incredible, is taking care of him. He now has to take care of three children at home and Elastigirl is out there kicking butt.

BLACKWELL: So, I know why everyone was speaking in really bad English accents this morning.

PAUL: "Mary Poppins".

BLACKWELL: Because "Mary Poppins" is coming back.

CARROLL: That's right. "Mary Poppins" returns. We don't know too much about it. You know, the funny thing, if you look at "Mary Poppins", it was a bit of a spectacle at the time.

So, we're really hoping that this one can produce the same kind of thing in the world of CGI. We hope that we can get the same kind of quality. But we have heard that Julie Andrews is super excited about handing off the baton off to Emily Blunt as Mary Poppins.

So, we'll check out. We'll see it. Check out a review at "Movieguide."

PAUL: I have a quick question. It says "Mary Poppins Returns." Is it a remake of the original, or is it a continuation?

CARROLL: It's a continuation.

PAUL: It's a new family?

CARROLL: It's a continuation. So they are meeting up with Michael who's now older. He has three children. There's a tragedy that happens in the family, so she kind of comes in and she's there to help the kids. So, it looks pretty fun.

BLACKWELL: So, this is one that I did know. You have to go back and think about some of the movies that you see.

PAUL: Because he has never seen "Mary Poppins."

BLACKWELL: I've never seen "Mary Poppins".


PAUL: That's what I said, sorry, wow.

BLACKWELL: "Mary Poppins," and "Sound of Music", I missed a lot of the classics. "A Wrinkle in Time."

CARROLL: "A Wrinkle in Time", though, was based on a huge book. It was kind like C.S. Lewis-esque. So, it's got this light versus darkness. The main character, she's kind of fighting darkness and she has to step up to the plate with her father who goes missing who you see on the screen.

So, this one looks really good. It's got a huge following. So, I'm excited about it personally. We know at "Movieguide", we do some stats on what families like, and they like to see good triumph over evil.


PAUL: And how about "Jurassic World"?

CARROLL: "Jurassic World", that looks great, too. The first one was such a fun action adventure. Now, we are excited to see Bryce Howard isn't actually running in heels in this one, so that's a good thing, because everybody was laughing about that. But Chris Pratt, once again, they are going back and they are kind of saving the dinosaurs before the volcano explodes. So, it's going to be a lot of action.

PAUL: All righty.

BLACKWELL: So, we are a couple days out from the Golden Globes, but I want to look ahead to the Oscars. Who is in the running? Do you have picks for best picture for the Oscars?

CARROLL: The ones I love and, you know, "Movieguide" kind of recommendations are "Dunkirk," I think Christopher Nolan did an incredible job with that. The cinematography, the score was amazing if you have seen it. It's probably the most artsy war film that I've ever seen. And it's also some got great messages in there.

The other one I enjoy is "Darkest Hour," which is along the same time period. Obviously, Winston Churchill. And so, that's an incredible movie. He's up for best actor and he's not even recognizable, Gary Oldman. So, he does an incredible job.

Of course, I love "Wonder Woman," Patty Jenkins, I think she did an amazing job with that, showing -- you know, appearing innocent character that's also strong and fighting for the right things.

BLACKWELL: All right. We've got a lot to look forward to.


BLACKWELL: Evy Carroll, thanks so much.

CARROLL: Thanks so much.

PAUL: I'm going to take him to "Mary Poppins." Just saying.

[07:55:01] Don't forget to celebrate the New Year with us as well.

BLACKWELL: I got to see "Mary Poppins" in 2018.

PAUL: You do in 2018. But tonight, we've got two best friends. We've got one epic night. And you know there are going to be big shenanigans.

BLACKWELL: Yes, I feel like we almost slipped up on the shenanigans earlier today. Y'all missed that moment.

PAUL: We did not.

OK. We've got, of course, Anderson Cooper and Andy Cohen, you never know what they are going to bring out actually here. "New Year's Eve Live", it begins tonight at 8:00.

Thank you for making 2017 so much fun for us. We appreciate you. And we hope you make good memories tonight.

BLACKWELL: Absolutely. Here's to a great 2018 together. And as we leave you, a live look at Sydney harbor, Australia, preparing to ring in 2018. We wish you a very happy and safe New Year's.

"INSIDE POLITICS" with Nia-Malika Henderson in this Sunday is coming up after a short break.