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HALA GORANI TONIGHT
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Aired February 1, 2018 - 15:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
HALA GORANI, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: Hello, everyone. Live from CNN London. I'm Hala Gorani.
Tonight, forced to go underground, CNN obtains exclusive video from Afrin in Northern Syria where civilians are finding a dark refuge from fighting
Also, tonight, an extraordinary clash over a classified memo. We are live in Washington as tensions between the White House and the FBI reach a fever
And here's a question for you, are you spending less time on Facebook these days? Because Mark Zuckerberg and Co are noticing. Let's take a look at
Let us start with our lead out of Syria. The war there has not been in the headlines lately, but terrible scenes are playing out on a new battlefield.
It's Afrin, a Kurdish area in Northern Syria where airstrikes are raining down and thousands are forced to flee.
The shells and jets are Turkish, and Ankara says it's targeting terrorists. Both Kurdish fighters and ISIS, but as in most military operations, it's
civilians who are living in terror. Take a look at this new video which you'll only see here on CNN.
GORANI (voice-over): For these people of Afrin live is now underground. This cave home to 12 people, a blanket on the floor, the only comfort in
the winter darkness, as they crouch waiting for danger to pass.
CNN has obtained exclusive video from inside Afrin. It shows how the threat of Turkish air strikes has driven families from across the Kurdish
enclave into caves and basements.
Many here say they've lost family members in the last two weeks since Turkey launched its offensive and below ground sorrow hangs in stales
SADIQA MOHAMAD, AFRIN RESIDENT (through translator): We are poor people. My husband was killed. We have no place to go. What are we going to do?
The 11-year-old Jasmine says she lost her father last week, a fighter defending their village.
UNIDENTIFIED CHILD (through translator): My dad was killed and me and my mom and my brothers are all here in the cave. It is really dark here so we
are scared because it is really noisy. They are conducting air strikes. What did we do to them? We are just kids. Why is this our fault?
GORANI: This is what they are running from. CNN video shows how airstrikes and artillery have shattered the streets. Turkey sees the Kurds
as a threat, as Kurdish leaders have long sought an independent Kurdish state in the region.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (through translator): Our homes are destroyed. Mr. Erdogan is dropping bombs on us. We lost our homes, our children, nothing
is left. Why would this happen to us?
GORANI: The general manager of this hospital in Afrin City says they're overwhelmed with the number of wounded. On one ward, a mother mourns her
10-year-old boy. Wailing, how will I ever live without you. Doctors say he was fatally injured by Turkish bombing in the city of (inaudible).
Kurdish officials say scores of civilians have been killed and hundreds injured by the Turkish military so far, though, CNN can't independently
confirm the exact death toll.
In a statement to CNN, the Turkish government said they are only targeting terrorists and that sensitivity has shown to avoid damage to civilians and
innocent people and to the environment.
The U.N. estimates 16,000 people have been displaced across Afrin and said some civilians are being prevented from leaving by local authorities. With
no escape, people are left to find warmth and shelter anywhere they can.
GORANI: Our team worked hard to get an official Turkish voice on the program today to provide their perspective on what's happening in Afrin,
they declined. Let's discuss all of these issues. I'm joined now by two guests, Matthew Briza is a former deputy assistant secretary of state for
Turkey, Soner Cagaptay, directs the Turkish research program at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy.
Matthew, can you hear me? We'll work on Matthew. But Soner, can you hear me hopefully in D.C.
SONER CAGAPTAY, WASHINGTON INSTITUTE FOR NEAR EAST POLICY: I can, yes.
GORANI: Yes. What is Turkey doing right now in that part of Syria? What are they trying to achieve?
CAGAPTAY: Heartbreaking to see pictures of civilian casualties, but beyond that there is a war going on there between a Kurdish group, which is
designated as a terrorist entity by Turkey and also by its allies.
[15:05:03] And Turkey is basically I think trying to take over parts of the border area to establish a security perimeter so that further attacks into
the country can be prevented. I see this as Turkey's push in the sense that it has priorities and the war in Syria have changed.
For a very long time, Turkey was almost obsessed with ousting Assad regime. It has now dropped its hostility towards the Assad resume and shifted its
attention to the Kurdish militia, PKK, YPG in Syria and Turkey.
And I think we are going to see more battles like this unfortunately going forward within Turkey and Syrian Kurdish militia, YPG in the days coming
GORANI: Matthew Briza, hopefully you can hear me now. Turkey says it's targeting terrorists. People on the ground are saying not all. These are
civilians who are suffering. OK. We are going to try to fix that technical problem with Matthew.
Soner, you heard that question. I mean, obviously it depends who you ask, but when we asked people on the ground what's going on. There is a big
civilian toll here in this operation.
CAGAPTAY: Unfortunately, that seems to be the case that there are civilian casualties. Afrin is a population of nearly half a million people. The
good thing is that much of the fighting so far has focused in rural areas abutting the Turkish war that there is only one big city in Afrin
(inaudible) also called Afrin.
That is where the overwhelming percentage of the half-million people live so it is good that fighting has not reached that city, and I think it is
good that it is over isolated pockets, rural areas adjacent to the Turkish border.
I think going forward, of course, Turkey does not want to invade Syria. It will establish security outposts inside Syria, similar to our posts it has
had inside Iraqi Kurdistan since 1990s so it accuses them as a forward base against future attacks by the PKK and I think it's probably the new normal.
GORANI: But basically, that's taking a sliver of Syrian territory, calling it your own, whatever you call it, a security barrier, a buffer zone,
whatever you call it. You're still basically establishing a military presence in a neighboring country.
CAGAPTAY: That is correct. And I think the writing on the wall is that unfortunately certain Kurds including the YPG, the militia organization
that is linked to the PKK which is a terrorist group.
They will be pressured by Turkey on one side and the Assad resume on the other side. I can see the writing on the wall, Hala. I think what will
happen is that while Turkey looks the other way or forces its hand from the north, the Assad resume is going to come from the South and sweep up many
of these areas held by the YPG.
Not on similar to what happened to Iraqi Kurdistan when the Iraqi government moved in against Kurdish areas early last year and Kurdistan
almost collapse. I think we could see something similar this time with the Kurdish entity in Syria with the regime of Assad forces pushing in.
GORANI: I get that Turkey has definitely issues with the PKK, called it a terrorist group, and not just Turkey, other countries as well.
CAGAPTAY: That's correct.
GORANI: The YPG though worked alongside forces funded and armed by the United States and actually rooted out ISIS from major, major parts of the
territory. And the YPG and the Kurds in Syria feel like they should be thanked for this and they should be protected from Turkey by those that
they thought alongside, right?
CAGAPTAY: That's correct.
GORANI: I mean, do they have a claim here?
CAGAPTAY: That is correct. But I think what we have discussed, what you've said does not really apply to Afrin. Here is how it goes. The YPG,
which is a certain Kurdish militia is allied with the U.S. all over Syria except in Afrin.
In the rest of the country, the YPG falls under what is called Syrian Democratic Forces, which is armed and trained and backed by the United
States. I think this was a master stroke for Ankara, for Turkey, because it targeted the only YPG in Syria that is not allied with the U.S. That is
YPG in Afrin with which the U.S. --
GORANI: But Macron, the French president and others even Donald Trump apparently has called Erdogan in a phone call cool it, you know, you don't
have to go so heavy handedly in that part of Syria.
I mean, Turkey hates that type of thing because the Turkish government today said this amounted to an insult from Macron. So, it is also now
those who are funding the SDS and allied with the YPG who are saying do not be so -- do not go in like this. It is too much.
CAGAPTAY: The way I read Macron's statement is it is saying you have the right to go and to defend yourself against attacks, but do not turn this
into an invasion. And I think Turkey and Macron are not really far apart.
I do not think Turkey's plan is to invade this whole area, hold onto it. It knows that it cannot sustain long-term control of a large civilian
population that is hostile to Turkey.
I think what Turkey is trying to do is take out infrastructure of the YPG so is not a threat, and, of course, they have to do their best to minimize
civilian casualties. My impression from my conversations in Washington is that U.S. policy on this issue is the following.
[15:10:06] It can be summarized in three sentences, do it, do it fast, and do not harm civilians, and I think because it is in Afrin, an area where
the Syrian-Kurdish militia has no contact with the U.S. government, it is easier for the U.S. government in this case to look the other way.
Because if this was in an area where the YPG to Kurdish militia has ties with the U.S. government, Washington will be forced to come to its
assistance, which is why I think that is a masterstroke that Turkey isolated its YPG policy from that of the U.S.
It's targeting the YPG, but not confronting Washington, and I think if the Afrin operations stay as it is, it will be written as a success for Turkish
President Erdogan domestically.
GORANI: We'll see. They said this olive branch operation could go all the way to the Iraqi border so --
CAGAPTAY: That I kind of doubt. I think it will stay --
GORANI: Well -- usually military operations have a habit of starting small and sometimes going beyond the initial intent. Soner Cagaptay, thank so
much for joining us. We really like your time and expertise. Apologies there for our connection with Matthew Briza there. We had some technical
issues, but there you have it. It's live TV. It is how it goes sometimes.
Now to an extraordinary clash in Washington involving the White House, the FBI, and Congress. Donald Trump seems intent on defying his own FBI
director by releasing a controversial memo that was spearheaded by a Republican ally.
Well, now, we know his apparent motivation. Mr. Trump didn't mention the controversy when he spoke at a Republican retreat earlier, but sources tell
us he believes the memo alleging surveillance abused at the FBI could help discredit the entire Russia investigation.
The FBI has issued a grave warning about the memo's accuracy, but a senior official just told reporters the White House will inform Congress probably
tomorrow that President Trump is OK with the memo and likely will not order any redactions.
The whole controversy is starting to feel a bit like a reality show with the cliffhanger teasing the public even though the consequences of Mr.
Trump's decision could be extremely serious.
Let's bring in White House reporter, Stephen Collinson because I want to reset on the story, Stephen. Explain to us for people who are not
following the story forensically and incrementally, what is this memo and why do we care?
STEPHEN COLLINSON, CNN POLITICS SENIOR REPORTER: So, Hala, the memo was written by Republican staffers on the House Intelligence Committee and we
have not seen it. But we understand what it says is that the FBI abused its surveillance law when it sought a warrant for a foreign policy aide to
President Trump in the campaign to eavesdrop on that man, Carter Page.
Now, this is Republican staffers on the House Intelligence Committee. What they appear to be doing is working in concert with the White House to get
this memo out to get it published. Now the FBI has said that it is greatly concerned as you said about this memo because it omits facts and presents
unfair and incomplete view of exactly what happened.
And there are great now apparently concerns colleagues in the White House are reporting that the director of the FBI, Christopher Wray, could choose
to resign if this memo is released tomorrow as the White House says it will be.
GORANI: So, Stephen, and I believe we are seeing fresh pictures of the president, Donald Trump, there making his way back to the White House there
wearing a darker colored coat there on a winter's day in Washington, D.C.
So, the contents of the memo itself authored by the chairman of the Intelligence Committee, right, Devin Nunes, what do we expect is in that?
Why would Donald Trump want to release it with very few redactions?
COLLINSON: We expect what is in it is an indictment of FBI practices in obtaining this warrant. The reason we've all thought that Donald Trump
would like it release is because he thinks it could discredit the Robert Mueller special counsel probe against him and raise questions about that.
We've seen this massive effort by the White House and conservatives and conservative media groups to discredit the Mueller investigation and this
appears to be one part of that. The reporting we have today is that is indeed the case that Trump does believe that this will significantly
undermine the investigation.
Now Democrats on the committee say that this is cherry picking intelligence. It does not give the full picture and it is clearly, you
know, a political exercise and why this is important is because it raises the idea that the separation of powers between Congress and the White House
are in doubt Congress is supposed to oversee intelligence agencies.
The White House here it appears that Republicans in Congress are working with the White House to undermine the investigation being conducted by
special counsel and the FBI. So, this raises all sorts of constitutional questions.
[15:15:02] GORANI: And also -- but of course, everything has become partisan because based on what side you're on, the release of classified
information is either a bad thing or not so bad thing because it would shed light on an issue.
Nancy Pelosi, for instance, tweeted out in the last few hours, "Devin Nunes is putting our national security at risk, ignoring concerns from the FBI
and DOJ to advance a conspiracy theory, retweet, if you know Speaker Ryan must, quote, "remove Nunes immediately". So, obviously Democrats are
seeing this very, very differently.
COLLINSON: Yes. Of course, and Democrats, what they are trying to do is create this impression that is fairly widespread in Washington, perhaps not
in the rest of the country, that what Trump is doing is nudging against political norms and this sort of the limits of his power.
But what is very interesting in this case is it is not just the Republicans against the Democrats, Christopher Wray, the head of the FBI was a
Republican, appointed by Donald Trump.
Senior officials of the Justice Department, who opposed the release of this memo, they are also Republicans who appointed by Donald Trump. That is why
it's so interesting. It is not just the party lines fight. It is a clash between the White House and the institutions of the U.S. government.
GORANI: It's fascinating and we will see if this memo is released tomorrow and what it contains and how it will be interpreted. Thanks very much,
Stephen Collinson, in Washington.
A lot more to come this evening, the battle over broadcast, Kenya's government faces off against the country's high court over freedom of the
press. There are TV stations taken off the air in Kenya. We'll tell you why.
Facebook says people are spending less time on his website. We'll tell you why the company is actually potentially trying to capitalize on that.
We'll be right back.
GORANI: A crisis maybe brewing in Kenya, here's government on one side and three TV stations as well as the Kenyan High Court firmly on the other
side. The court ordered the government to put the stations back on the air several hours ago, but so far, the stations remained dark.
The government took the three networks off the air Tuesday when they tried to broadcast a mock swearing-in ceremony for opposition leader.
Let's go to Farai Sevenzo in Nairobi with more. So, the High Court tells the government switch these TVs back on and they do not do it, I mean, they
are openly ignoring an order from the highest court.
FARAI SEVENZO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hala, you know, the Kenya that we've come to know, at least, from the time I've been here, relies a great deal
on the High Court as you say, and as this order came through to switch on the TV stations, with immediate effect, the high court say until they do a
ruling on February 14th, they haven't switched them on.
[15:20:04] And that's where we are at the moment and the journalists for these stations, NTV, KTA, and Citizen TV. I've spoken to them throughout
the course of day. They say that this is an action of taking back the media 30 or 40 years back.
And you'll remember those times when there was an absolute president, executive power in this country, people (inaudible) shutdown stations, pick
up journalists at will. This is a very confusing and baffling situation for Kenya in 2018 to be reverting back to the polices of 1978.
GORANI: All right, Farai Sevenzo, thanks very much, joining us live from Nairobi.
Now banned for a lie, but now back in the game or should I say games. There's been a stunning reversal of fortunes for 28 Russian athletes. An
international court overturned their lifetime Olympic bans for doping.
The timing couldn't be better for them because after all it is a week until the Winter Olympics in South Korea. The International Olympic Committee
says it may appeal the decision, but the Kremlin is already celebrating.
Let's go to Moscow, Fred Pleitgen is there. What's been obviously the reaction? It's happy but I am just wondering what are the -- do these
athletes get their medals back that they were stripped off a few years ago? What are their -- have they been training? Because they've been
anticipating a ban, right?
FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, I think the answer pretty much to all those questions is, yes, first of all, they
get their medals back, at least the 28 who were fully reinstated. There were 39 athletes in total who were part of this ruling, 11 of them were
They do not get their medals back from 2014 from Sochi, but 28 of these athletes actually do get their medals back, and the big question I think
right now and you're also absolutely right the Kremlin is rejoicing.
A lot of officials here are rejoicing, but the big question for these athletes now is, will they be able to get to the Olympics that's start in
just a week and there, as you have noted, the International Olympic Committee says not so fast. They might want to appeal this decision.
And they put out a statement also today saying just because they may have been cleared does not mean that they are going to get an invitation to
participate in the Olympics. However, the lawyer for these athletes had said that that might invoke legal action.
In fact, they are not allowed to go to these Olympics. So certainly, this is something that could be a pretty big issue for the International Olympic
Committee, and at least some of the athletes, Hala, that we have been speaking to say, yes, they are training and certainly, some of them will
want to go back to the Olympics and try to win metals there once again.
So, this is certainly a big headache for the IOC, a big headache for the sport in general. But you are absolutely right, the Russians, not just the
officials in the Kremlin, but certainly also officials in Russian sports very, very happy about this decision -- Hala.
GORANI: Now, are Russian athletes who are going even if they are not going representing their country, how does everything change since this doping
scandal? How are they tested? How has the whole system been reformed, if at all? How does it work now?
PLEITGEN: Well, the Russians say that the system has been changed completely. They say that they now adhere to international standards,
things that, for instance, were happening around 2014 certainly are not happening anymore.
And there was a catalog of things that the Russians had to adhere to actually be able to participate in the Olympics in 2014, and the reason why
they did not meet that is because they never acknowledged that there was indeed in this country a state-sponsored program of doping.
And they still do not acknowledge that. They say that this was certain cases of athletes doing it, but not something that was led by the state, of
course, very much in contradiction to what the IOC and its various reports says about this.
So, the Russians are saying, yes, they do now meet international standards and that their athletes are clean, at least the ones that have been tested
here. So, they say that they are fairly confident about the athletes that they send, but of course, still Russia as a country will not be represented
at the Olympics.
It's going to be the Russian athletes who are going to go basically as nonstate participants of these Olympics -- Hala.
GORANI: All right. Our senior international correspondent, Fred Pleitgen, in Moscow.
Now, to something different, but that pretty much everyone can relate to and that is Facebook. I mean, if you do not have an account, you are part
of the tiny, tiny minority. Those who do have an account apparently are spending a lot less time on the site. That's what the Facebook CEO, Mark
Zuckerberg, told Wall Street as part of the company's latest earnings report.
The number of people who check Facebook daily in the U.S. and Canada fell for the first time in the company's history. Facebook says the amount of
time people spend on the site dropped by about two minutes per person per day.
While those numbers may seem like bad news, Zuckerberg says he isn't worried. I'm joined by technology and business correspondent, Samuel
Burke, to explain why. He needs to reassure investors obviously because that headline is not great.
SAMUEL BURKE, CNN MONEY TECHNOLOGY CORRESPONDENT: And he absolutely did reassure investors. When this news first came out that less people are
spending less time on the site, the stock actually went down about 5 percent. Once he got on the call, he smooth everything out.
[15:25:02] Listen, I think there are three main reasons why people are spending less time. Number one, they tweaked it, so you see less viral
videos in your feeds, so maybe a crazy doing a great trick, tag your friends here if they are dog lovers.
Facebook said that's quantity over quality. They wanted to get rid of that. Number two, fake news, actually fake news on the platform, and then
number three, I think something that is harder to measure, but there had been so many discussions and reporting like we've talked about on this show
around mental health concerns in social media.
Are we addicted, anxiety and even depression, I have to say, you kind of went off the Facebook radar personal page and it made me think twice and
I'm one of the people who has pulled back a bit because of that.
GORANI: I'll tell you what I did is I got rid of the -- I certainly got rid of the app on my phone because that was just leading to mindless
scrolling. I was learning nothing new. Most of the people you are friends with on Facebook are people you do not really interact with daily.
But I have messaging groups with my family and my friends if I want to share a few pictures, you know, I'll do that on my --
BURKE: And start to realize people are only showing their best side of themselves, peacocking they call it.
GORANI: There's a bit of that too. But you mentioned fake news because we got to get this in and there really was fake news -- the super blood moon
that tricks a lot of people.
BURKE: We were reporting on this beautiful moon that so many people saw in so many parts of the world, but then there was a fake video. This is a
live video that went up on Facebook. It looks like it was the moon that day over Greece, but this is actually a picture from nine years ago.
They even added wind to it, Hala, to make it sound like it was live, 16 million people saw this. It was up for four hours before it finally got
taken down. So how are they going to get political news down, which is a lot harder to do it if they can't even tell that something like this is
How would you know that it's fake? It was a real picture taken by a Greek guy nine years ago, but it was not live at that time.
GORANI: But this is the issue is how do you vet this stuff. You have too much material and Facebook can't be necessarily responsible or able to go
through every single frame of every video.
BURKE: And I hate to and every story I do on your show like this, but it feels very black mirror again like that series on Netflix because if you
saw that video and you didn't know that it was fake news and you are not watching HALA GORANI --
GORANI: I'll be watching it with wonder. I would be thinking how awesome nature is beautiful. We're small in the universe and the rest of it, and
then I feel cheated and I know I did not I think how can I, you know, ever trust anything I see online?
BURKE: They still have 2 billion users so they'll be OK.
GORANI: I think Mark Zuckerberg will be just fine. Thanks very much, Samuel Burke and we'll see you later next hour for more on this story.
Still to come tonight, Washington is in wait-and-see mode as the White House sits on a controversial memo that alleges surveillance abuses by the
FBI. We'll talk more about why President Trump wants this memo released. Stay with us.
[15:30:00] HALA GORANI, CNN ANCHOR: Back now to the firestorm in Washington over a controversial memo alleging surveillance abuses of the
FBI. The White House House says Donald Trump is expected to approve the memo and send it back to Congress probably tomorrow, "without a new
redaction." Sources saying Mr. Trump is not trying to hide his motivations in making the memo public, telling friends he believes it could help
discredit the Russia probe.
That's not the only big news involving the investigation. The New York Times is reporting a former Trump legal team spokesman had concerns about
possible obstruction of justice after he heard White House aide Hope Hicks tell President Trump that damaging e-mails about a Trump Tower meeting,
"will never get out." Hicks denies those remarks.
President Trump can directly fire, by the way, the special counsel, Robert Mueller, but the deputy attorney general Rod Rosenstein could, although
that's extremely unlikely to happen$. Democrats believe the memo is aimed in part at discrediting Rosenstein giving Mr. Trump a reason to replace
Let's go through all this. Legal analyst, Joey Jackson is here to help us sorted all out. Let's talk, first of all, about this memo, the release of
the memo. Explain to us why this would be significant and what the legal implications could be.
JOEY JACKSON, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: Sure. Good to see you. Well, it's very significant because you have a memorandum which purportedly has classified
information there. And it's not only that there's information that are classified, which lead to the conclusions that the memo appears to present
and of course it was prepared by the House Intelligence Committee, Mr. Devin Nunes.
But in addition to that, there are apparently, according to some sources material omissions that may be in the memorandum that make it inaccurate
and distort the nature of what it really should say. So you have the mix of classified information being released. You have Mr. Trump, our
president's own justice department, and the FBI saying, no, no, don't release this. It would certainly be reckless if you do so. And then you
have the pushback by the president, apparently, who wants to release the memorandum and this apparently is as much about law as it is about
GORANI: And what about Hope Hicks? So this is the communications head, a very close to President Donald Trump which reports that she is denying that
she would have said, don't worry these e-mails about the Trump Tower meeting in June 2016 with the Russian operatives, those will not come out.
I mean, people who want to see obstructions of justice in all of this will look at that and say, it's textbook, right?
JACKSON: It's textbook and less the people who are looking for obstruction; are those who are against you, are those who are undermining
the president because they don't like him. Those who are Democratic operatives that exist to do everything they can to take down Donald Trump.
And so why am I saying that? Because the essence of the memorandum, when I said as much about law about politics is if you undermine the actual nature
of why this foreign surveillance was allowed. It shouldn't have been allowed. It was based on faulty information. If you undermine that and
you undermine all those who went to the court to get it, then you say those at the top, who are looking to bring me down are people who should not be
there or people who have their own motivations or people who could be fired. And so all of this, if you discredit the investigation, you
discredit the investigators, you credit the conclusions that ultimately the investigation brings forth. And so, therefore, it goes to the issue of
whether the president obstructed or did he not, or is this is the president has said, just the witch-hunt. So there is the political divide.
GORANI: So really it is political, right? I mean, anything in Washington involving the president will be political based on who controls what branch
In the case of the investigation, Rob Mueller can't be fired by the president. But Rod Rosenstein who's the deputy attorney general who's in
charge, simply because Jeff Sessions, the attorney general have to recuse himself. If he is discredited enough, what does that do to the probe?
JACKSON: Well, and that's exactly right, because now, the probe itself is called into question. We should mention that the deputy attorney general,
Rod Rosenstein, right? These allegations that he just rub a stamp, the reapplication for the surveillance of Carter Page which was initially the
focus of this FISA warrant. So they're attacking the FISA courts, attacking the people who went to the FISA courts, attacking the information
that they're using. Saying it's all partisan. It's all a witch-hunt. This is not true. And so if the conclusions ultimately, we don't know what
they are yet, Hala. But if the conclusions are that there was obstruction and you move forward, how now can a public trust this investigation is the
argument, if those who are in charge are all partisan? So the essence of the memo is to undermine the investigators, don't trust the conclusions,
and again, to the president's point, it's all a witch-hunt. So it's all - politics --
[15:35:12] GORANI: But, Joey, you're not just undermining the investigation, you're undermining the entire institutions here, in the
United States, right?
JACKSON: That is a wonderful point, because historically, the FBI, Federal Bureau of Investigation has been independent, right? The Department of
Justice has been independent. They're under the executive branch, but they operate essentially in a manner which immunizes them from the president and
that's why there's this tension. There's even reports that the director of the FBI, if they release this memo, wants to resign, right? We don't know
if that's the case. But there's a fight in the executive branch. So this is all politics.
Last point, is that the Democrats apparently have another memo that's 10 pages, not four pages, but the committee which is led by Republicans,
partisanship. They said, oh, no, no. We're not going to release that memorandum. We're just going to release the one that Devin Nunes prepared,
that he essentially edited after it was voted that they prepare a memo and the Democrats are saying there are material omissions in his edits and they
went more than edit. Eh actually altered the document. So this is politics at its finest that is designed and meant to undermine an
investigation by a branch of government that should be independent from the president.
GORANI: So really what we're looking at here is politics, essentially dictating in what direction the investigation might or might not go. Who
will be eventually leading it? How the report's results will be interpreted, and what potential impacts they could have on the president.
It's politics, not the justice system in this case. Am I right I saying that?
JACKSON: So you are absolutely right. And the basis for me saying that is because, listen, in the event that Robert Mueller who's the special
counsel, and he's appointed to look at this whole Russia issue, was there any collusion? Was that known to the Trump officials? And then the other
step is was there obstruction? What does that mean? It means, was there intent to cover up any type of collusion? So to that extent, if you
undermine this person that we're looking at, now, you can argue that, in regards of his conclusions, it doesn't matter, because he's with the
And by the way, you know what? He can't be trusted and as a result of that, this is simply a witch-hunt. And that's been the president's point.
And so it's partisan politics and raising it in that we have a Republican, of course, in the White House, Republicans control the Senate, Republicans
control the House of Representatives. And so as long as Republicans are in charge -- and it's with any party, right? Who ultimately has -- or who's
in charge of the Houses. They get to dictate what the policies are going to be. And in this case, they're saying, release the memo and there's
every indication, Hala, that the president will do so.
GORANI: And it's not just the branches of government, also many people involved in the investigation are Republicans as well, which makes it
doubly interesting. So we'll see what happens --
JACKSON: Unless you listen to the president and his people, which say they're all Democrats. They're there to bring me down. And it's all
partisan and they're not Republicans. They're not with me. And so they are in lies the problem back to politics, not law.
GORANI: All right. Joey Jackson, always a pleasure. Thanks very much.
JACKSON: Thank you.
GORANI: Speaking of politics, as the British prime minister tries to forge stronger ties with China. She's there at the moment. She's still dealing
with the big, big issue on the table in this country, and that is Brexit. The U.K.'s divorce with the European Union. Theresa May met the Chinese
president in Beijing today. As always, the challenges of Brexit followed her all the way to China. She's sparked a new clash with Brussels,
specifically Mrs. May says, "E.U. citizens arriving in Britain, after the Brexit, dated March 2019, must have different rights to those here, before
that cutoff date. Even if there's a transition period.
Let's bring in CNN's Bianca Nobilo for more. Even you is clear. They're saying if there's a transition period, it's all the same rules that apply.
But Mrs. May is saying, no, no, it must be different for E.U. citizens.
BIANCA NOBILO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Quite right. So the E.U. have said, we are preserving the status quo for you, Britain, because you asked for s
transition period. That means that the U.K. will stay in the single market and the Customs Union, but that requires the full freedoms and freedom of
movement, of course, is one of the pillars of that agreement. So the E.U. obviously unhappy with this, but then the prime minister has to balance the
anger of the Brexit years within her own party who think that leave means leave. So when U.K. formally leaves in March 2019 that people shouldn't be
able to settle in the U.K. in the same way it was before.
GORANI: But I was -- I'm confused, you either want to a transition period or you don't. I mean, how do you cherry pick what you want during a period
where you still have access to the common market, still within the Customs Union, but you don't give the residency and the same rights for living,
working, and benefiting from social services that you citizens as you did before.
[15:40:55] NOBILO: Precisely and this is why the E.U. have coined the term and cherry-picked all to describe the U.K. being difficult in these sorts
of matter. But the U.K. have been referring to this period, as the implementation period. So that implies that action will be taken to change
the existing relationship to the future relationship. That's quite different from a status quo transition, so we still have clarity on which
one is more likely to resemble.
GORANI: We do have clarity on March, do we?
NOBILO: We don't -- it's another example of vague quality coming out of the U.K. government on Brexit.
GORANI: But it's also the vague -- and by the way, I want to put up the spectator, which is very much a conservative publication. As on its over,
it's a cover, lead or go to Theresa May. Not very flattering cartoon of her, drawing over there. Saying essentially, leader. But what is it mean
lead? Because I have to be honest with you. I get what Brexit means. But what kind of Brexit do you want? What Brexit did voters in this country
want when they voted for Brexit in their majority? Do we know?
NOBILO: Well, it's precisely that uncertainty what makes it so difficult.
GORANI: But do they know? Does she know, Theresa May?
NOBILO: Well, no. She's certainly not communicating. If she does know, she hasn't told her party. And it is that frustration that she has not
outlined what the end state will be. And even if people disagree, because she's got remained this on one side, she's got Brexit here on the other.
But the party needs leadership. She needs to take a decisive start and people will fall in line, because they want that authority. They know that
the party needs it.
GORANI: But it sounds like she's sitting on some secret dossier, where the government's position has clearly laid out, but she just not refuse - she's
refusing to read it. It just seems to me like it's touch and go and we'll figure it out as we go, right?
NOBILO: Because any decisive action she takes, it's going to provoke a backlash from one side or the others. So she's in this position where
she's trying to prolong that. Stop it from happening for as long as she possibly can. But of course, that's untenable. It's the greatest test of
her leadership, Brexit. But it's not just Brexit. About the front cover that we just saw, lead or go. There's frustration mounting among very
levelheaded MPs in the U.K. that wouldn't usually complain. But there's just no impetus for domestic agenda. Yes, Brexit happening. But other
things are happening in the country too that people care about and then not being addressed. So the frustration is mounting and I think the pressure
on the prime minister is broader and it's more serious than it has been since that surprise election results last year.
GORANI: Thank you very much, Bianca Nobilo for that update. Check out our Facebook page. You can spend more minutes a day on this page if you like.
Feel free to do that, despite the current trend. facebook.com/halagoranicnn.
After the break, imagine being far from home in a country where you don't speak the language. Imagine being isolated in that country as a domestic
worker. Now, imagine your employer is abusing you. What do you do? There are more than 70,000 migrant domestic workers in Jordan. And we must warn
you, some of the video you're about to see is disturbing. Here is Jomana Karadsheh.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOMANA KARADSHEH, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It's the chilling and disturbing video that embodies the suffering of many domestic workers in the Middle
East. "You will die. You will die," this Jordanian recruitment agency employee tells the Bangladeshi housemaid. Ignoring her desperate seize for
him to stop. Officials say the man was jailed after this video circulated. She returned to Bangladesh.
Cases of abuse, forced labor, and domestic servitude are common in Jordan. Rights groups have documented cases where domestic workers are deprived of
food, medical treatment and locked in a house by employers who expected them to work 16 hours a day. Some 20 hours, seven days a week. But some
in Jordan are trying to change this.
In 2010, Linda Al-Kalash received the State Department's Trafficking in Persons Hero Award for her efforts to combat modern-day slavery in Jordan.
The organization she founded in 2007 keen for legal aid broke new grounds using the legal system to pursue the rights of migrant workers. With her
team of lawyers, Al-Kalash took employers to court for abuses and labor violations. Tamkeen which means empowerment in Arabic has become the first
call for help for many migrant workers.
LINDA AL-KALASH, DIRECTOR, TAMKEEN FOR LEGAL AID AND HUMAN RIGHTS: You feel that these people be afraid from everything, from anybody. In the
beginning, it was very difficult to deal with the government with the recruitment agency, with the employer themselves. They don't accept that
anybody defends domestic workers.
KARADSHEH: Al-Kalash, says things have changed in recent years. She now works closely with the country's anti-trafficking unit and provides
training to its members. Al-Kalash does not shy away from speaking her mind in a room full of members of the security services. Col. Haydar Shboul
has the unit that has investigated hundreds of cases since it was established by the government in 2013.
[15:45:59] HAYDAR SHBOUL, DIRECTOR, PUBLIC SECURITY DEPARTMENT'S ANTI-HUMAN TRAFFICKING UNIT (through translator): Well, indoors talking about cannot
be implemented overnight. There are beliefs that need to be changed that includes those of lawyers, public prosecutors, and judges. They are the
ones who deal with these cases.
KARADSHEH: According to the 2017 State Department Trafficking in Persons report, Jordan remains a tier two country. As it quote, "Does not fully
need the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking. However, it is making significant efforts to do so."
One effort gaining Jordan praise is the opening of this shelter. Dar Karamah is the first government-run facility for victims of human
trafficking. Official say, Jordan is making great efforts striving to become a tier one country.
SUZAN QOSHBAI, MINISTRY OF SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT (Through translator): Dar Karama is considered the first step in the response to the victims of human
trafficking, by providing them with a safe space with all the support services. That enables the human trafficking victim to begin psychological
and physical rehabilitation.
KARADSHEH: Jordan has also been working on passing amendment to its anti- human trafficking law and to the penal code to strengthen sentences for trafficking violations. But for Al-Kalash, changing perceptions and
attitudes within society is key.
AL-KALASH: It's very important to go to the court. Why? Because it will be good lesson for employers to see that they are human, they have right,
they can have lawyers, they can go to the court.
KARADSHEH: Al-Kalash, says she will never stop fighting for the rights of migrant workers trying to change their situation one case at a time.
Jomana Karadsheh, CNN, Amman.
GORANI: Well, in part two of our freedom project special series on human trafficking in Jordan. Jomana brings us the heroine story of a survivor of
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KARADSHEH: Almeda left the life of poverty in farming in the Philippines, she says, for the promise of $500 a month salary as a domestic worker in
Jordan. Almeda, says she was trapped in the hell of a foreign country she didn't know, working 17 hours a day in a remote town near the Syrian
She knew that her rights were taken from her but she was afraid of going outside. Afraid no one will help her and that her life would be in danger.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GORANI: More on her experience and how she reclaimed her rights this time tomorrow on CNN.
Still to come tonight, they are accused of being criminals stealing drugs and selling drugs. But is the demonization of immigrants by some
politicians even remotely accurate? I'll ask you to consider this.
GORANI: Welcome back, everybody. So what subject did President Trump spend most time on in his speech, the State of the Union speech this week?
Not the soaring stock market, not the record low jobless numbers. It was that old favorite, immigration.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
[15:50:59] DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: For decades, open borders have allowed drugs and gangs to pour into our most vulnerable
communities. They've allowed millions of low wage workers to compete for jobs and wages against the poorest Americans. Most tragically they have
caused the loss of many innocent lives.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GORANI: But then he went to say how good it is for the economy, for business, and of course for the immigrants dreaming of a better life.
Right? No, of course, he didn't. The president with an unfamiliar ground blaming immigrants for rising crime and stealing American jobs. And he's
not the only one. Immigrants were one of the key targets in the Brexit vote. The survey released just this week. Said fear of immigration was
the main motivation for the winning Brexit years. "Any suggestion that immigration was not at the heart of this vote runs counter to what we have
found the survey read." But consider this. Immigrants, foreigners who come to a country to work, live, and thrive are just as beneficial to a
country than native-born citizens. It is just fact. So this whole narrative that migrants leech off social services and are burden to the
rest of the country is quite simply rubbish.
In the U.K., for instance, newly arrived European nationals paid over 3 billion pounds in taxes in the year-ending 2014. Yes, but how much did
they take out U.S. just about half a billion. And what about these crime sprees these guys are supposedly responsible for? Like the two couples
sided by Trump whose kids were killed by the MS-13 gang? Well, consider this, a 30-year study has totally trashed that theory. As immigration in
suburbs and city centers went up, the number of murders and robberies actually went down. So given these facts, what is Donald Trump really up
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LUCY FLORES, AMERICAN POLITICIAN: To suggest that immigration is just completely out of control and our borders are being overrun, that's just
completely false. And all it does is again, further divide people on rhetoric.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GORANI: For commentator, Kurt Bardella, an interesting person because he's a Republican who recently joined the Democratic Party. The reason is
simple. Trump, "Effectively weaponized the issue of immigration to galvanize the conservative base." Immigration basically as red meat to the
base. Not based on fact. Even though there is no evidence that keeping immigrants out will make America or any other country for that matter,
great again. We'll be right back.
GORANI: Many people look forward to starting their day with a fresh cup of coffee. Well, in one South Korean city residents' love affair with coffee
is undeniable. Isa Soares takes us for walk along the beach to learn about the city's history with the hot drink.
ISA SOARES, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Anmok Beach on the windswept east coast of South Korea, visitors both feathered and furred are here to
enjoy the winter surf. Along the sandy stretch of the city of Gangneung brews an unlikely love affair.
YI JONGDUCK, SOUTH KOREAN RESIDENT (through translator): In the 80's and 90's, young lovers would come to the secluded beach and buy coffee from the
running ship head. They would hold hands, drink coffee and that's how romantic coffee culture was born in Gangneung.
[15:55:06] SOARES (voice-over): Yi Jongduck heads up the Gangneung Culture and Arts Foundation. He says that the beach's image is a hotspot for dates
soon attracted to (INAUDIBLE) or coffee shops and roasteries. Fifty by his estimation in this area alone.
Ask anyone to point out the man responsible for Gangneung's jobs a boom and they might tell you to meet Kim Jongduck for some single origin hundred
coffee has in all in one factory Terarosa.
KIM YONG-DUEK, SOUTH KOREAN ENTREPRENEUR (through translator): When I first started in the coffee business, there weren't so many coffee shops in
Gangneung. Just vending machine coffee was the trend back then. I was shocked by how behind Korea's coffee culture was compared with other
SOARES (voice-over): A form of bang Kim says it's part of his mission to spread the work on specialty coffee. With branches across South Korea,
from Seoul to Busan, the homegrown brand is expanding overseas as well. But Kim says he wants the flagship location right here in Gangneung to
leave the biggest impression.
YONG-DUEK (through translator): The travel is today, the sightseeing is obviously important. But it's also the things like the food you eat and
the coffee you enjoy that gives you true happiness. I want people to form an attachment with Gangneung and remember that the coffee there was really
nice. And it was something amazing about this.
SOARES (voice-over): In the Korean city of coffee, cold brews and latte is perking up a sleepy seaside town. And adding a bit of romance to it as
well. Isa Soares, CNN.
GORANI: Little bit of breaking news for you. There appear to be some pretty serious clashes in Calais between migrants and the French port city.
Four of those people are suffering from gunshot wounds. So this is certainly something that's quite serious going on in Calais right now. A
brawl among migrants of Afghan and African origin broke out earlier today, according to CNN affiliate BFM. France's interior minister says he's
visiting the city this evening to meet with security forces. So some pretty serious clashes involving some gunshot wounds there between migrants
in Calais. A lot of them hoping to make it to the U.K. I'm Hala Gorani. "QUEST MEANS BUSINESS" is in Paris. Stay with us.