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Remembering the Lives Lost in the Synagogue Shooting; Interview with Representative Keith Rothfus; Hate and Conspiracy Theories Fuel National Tragedies; Jerusalem Grieves for Shooting Victims; Man Suspected of Mailing 14 Pipe Bombs to Appear in Court Today. Aired 8- 9p ET

Aired October 28, 2018 - 20:00   ET


[20:00:00] ALEX MARQUARDT, CNN ANCHOR: Just one day after the unspeakable events at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh the victims are being remembered not just in the city but around the country and around the world. These are their names. Joyce Feinberg, 75 years old, Richard Gottfried, 65. Rose Mallinger, the oldest at 97. Jerry Rabinowitz, 66. Cecil Rosenthal and his brother David Rosenthal 59 and 54. Bernice Simon, 84, and her spouse Sylvan Simon, 86 years old. And there was Daniel Stein, 71, Melvin Wax, 88. And finally Irving Younger, 69 years old.

Now as we remember them, take a moment and consider what we've just witnessed in this past week in America. A suspected mail bomber was arrested for terrorizing former presidents, politicians and others who President Trump has singled out in the past for criticism. Then there was a white gunman in Kentucky who killed two African-Americans after he failed to barge into predominantly black church. And that was all in the days before this deadliest attack on Jews in the history of the United States.

Three crimes and one common factor -- hate. But the silver lining if there's one thing we can take away from this horrible week is that there will always be people willing to stand up to that kind of hatred.

A few minutes ago I spoke with the head of the hospital in Pittsburgh where that gunman was taken afterward and is now being treated. A Dr. Jeff Cohen told me he made a point of going to see the gunman himself with his own eyes and spoke with him. Listen.


DR. JEFF COHEN, PRESIDENT, ALLEGHENY GENERAL HOSPITAL: I went to see the shooter and the cops that were guarding him. I looked at him and I wanted to try to understand why did he do this. And I have no answers. I asked him, how are you feeling, and he was sort of groggy. He said, I'm feeling OK. And I introduced myself as Dr. Cohen, the president of Allegheny General, and I left.

The FBI again in charge looked at me and says, I don't know how you did that because I'm not sure I could have. What's ironic is that one of the nurses that -- a nurse that came in and responded to the mass casualty event, his father is a rabbi in the South Hills. He took care of this guy, he did everything he could, was extremely professional.

I can't tell you how proud I am of the people at AGH and of people at Mercy and of people at Presby. They took care of people. They ran to the trouble and they solve people's problems. So it's a little bit of what went on yesterday was awful.


MARQUARDT: Now we should note that Dr. Cohen is both Jewish and a member of the Tree of Life Synagogue which says so much about him and that community. And it's in that community that we find CNN's Sarah Sidner who just a short time ago in that building behind you witnessed the people of Pittsburgh, all faiths as we've been saying, rallying around the Jewish community of Squirrel Hill in a show of support and strength.

So, Sara, you've been speaking with the people there. What did they tell you?

SARA SIDNER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Every person that we've spoken to in Squirrel Hill where all of this happened have told us unequivocally they never thought it would happen here. And then it did. And what they want the world to know, not just those in their community but the world to know is they do not want anyone to ever forget the victims.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: 75-year-old Joyce Fienberg of Oakland. 65-year- old Richard Gottfried or --

SIDNER (voice-over): The names of the victims read out so the world will know who they are.

SUZAN HAUPTMAN, KNEW VICTIMS OF SHOOTING: I have no words. I'm shaking inside. I'm shocked.

SIDNER: Suzan Hauptman knew three of the dead including brothers David and Cecil Rosenthal.

HAUPTMAN: The victims need to be talked about a lot. They can't talk for themselves anymore. Cecil was tall, David was small. They stood proud at the front door, a door that was open into the sanctuary. Whichever sanctuary it was, they just stood there, hello, they gave you a book or they said hello, or they said (INAUDIBLE), or they were like the ambassadors.

SIDNER: She and Susan Blackman also lost their family doctor Jerry Rabinowitz.

SUSAN BLACKMAN, KNEW VICTIMS OF SHOOTING: I can't imagine the world without him. Dr. Jerry was just somebody who when you see him your eyes light up, and he's gone.

SIDNER: Robin Bloom Freedman is a member of the Tree of Life Synagogue. She cannot remember a time when 97-year-old Rose Mallinger was not there. ROBIN BLOOM FRIEDMAN, TREE OF LIFE MEMBER: Spry, vibrant.

[20:05:02] Just you look at her and she had a lot of years left. She -- you know, and to have this happen is, I heard the age this morning and the tears came. She and her daughter went that morning maybe expecting to go home and have lunch afterwards together. And it's not something we'll ever be able to wrap our heads around.

SIDNER: Each of them had come to pray and sell pretty together on the Sabbath when hatred entered their synagogue.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Tall white male, short hair, light blue shirt, jeans.

SIDNER: The police dispatching the suspect's description as they geared up for a gun battle.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We have at least four down in the atrium, DOA at this time. We need armor.

SIDNER: The suspect had walked into a place set aside for peace with guns and a mission to kill Jewish people and succeeded.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is the most horrific crime scene I've seen in 22 years with the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

SIDNER: The suspect later telling police later he wanted to kill all Jews according to court documents. In the end it would be the deadliest attack against Jews in America according to the Anti- Defamation League. More dead than you can count on two hands, and six wounded including four police officers.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You know, you have a situation here where you have disturbed minds with hate in their heart and guns in their hands.

SIDNER: The deadly shooting sending a wave of sorrow across Pittsburgh and the world, drawing thousands together to mourn.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We are like a hand.

CROWD: We are like a hand.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: With various fingers connected.

CROWD: With various fingers connected.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So when one finger hurts.

CROWD: So when one finger hurts.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We all hurt. CROWD: We all hurt.


SIDNER: And we are hearing from people around the world including Benjamin Netanyahu, the prime minister of Israel. And he said in part after the holocaust that many hope that anti-Semitism would finally be relegated to the dust bins of history. But it hasn't. Stark words from someone who is mourning the deaths of all 11 people just like everyone in this community -- Alex.

MARQUARDT: Yes. And the prime minister actually sent his Ambassador Ron Dermer from Washington to Pittsburgh to offer his condolences and to see how he could help.

Sara Sidner, thank you very much for that very touching piece.

All right, well, a woman who lives right down the street from the synagogue knew one of the victims Dr. Jerry Rabinowitz. She knew him for more than 30 years and she found out at last night's vigil that he was among those killed.


DEBORAH FRIEDMAN, FRIEND OF SHOOTING VICTIM DR. JERRY RABINOWITZ: Well, our physician, Jerry Rabinowitz, was one of -- was the person we knew best who was killed. And he was a wonderful guy, a family physician, took care of our family for many, many years. One of the nicest people, most generous people, and most peaceful people that I've ever known, and it's just awful.


MARQUARDT: Rabinowitz was just 66 years old, gone far too soon.

Joining me now is Republican Congressman Keith Rothfus. He represents Pennsylvania's 12th district. Now, the Tree of synagogue -- the Tree of Life Synagogue, rather, in Pittsburgh borders the 12th District.

Congressman, thanks so much for joining us tonight. I first want to ask you, it's been almost 36 hours since this horrific massacre. How is the community there coping with everything?

REP. KEITH ROTHFUS (R), PENNSYLVANIA: The community is numb. Everybody is grief-stricken, heartbroken. One of the dead came from my district, one of my constituents. All of Western Pennsylvania is grieving, and it means so much to Western Pennsylvania that the world is reaching out. To have people from Israel come today, we had the minister of the Diaspora here, Naftali Bennett, the Ambassador Ron Dermer. To see the support from around the world has been very helpful to people here in Western Pennsylvania, particularly for the people in Squirrel Hill.

MARQUARDT: Congressman, in addition to discussing the investigation, we've also been talking about the rhetoric, the dangerous rhetoric that has consumed this country. And I just want to read a quote to you from a group of progressive Pittsburgh Jewish leaders who wrote an open letter to the president. They are demanding that he stay away from the city unless he meets their demand.

This is what the Bend the Arc Pittsburgh wrote. "For the past three years your words and your policies have emboldened a growing white nationalist movement. You yourself direct," sorry. "You yourself called the murder evil but yesterday's violence is the direct culmination of your influence. President Trump., you are not welcome in Pittsburgh until you fully denounce white nationalism."

[20:10:02] Now, Congressman, we heard just recently in this past week the president in fact call himself a nationalist. We know that in the past he has failed to condemn the violence and the death in Charlottesville.

Do you believe that the president's rhetoric since the campaign and into his presidency has contributed today the rise in hate crimes?

ROTHFUS: You know, I think the condemnation that the president had just yesterday was unequivocal. And we have to stay focused on what this was. This was an act of hatred. It was anti-Semitism, anti- Semitism that has been around for 2,000 years. And it has to be called out. It's around the world. It's happening in Western Europe. It happens in the Middle East. And to see it rear its head here in Pittsburgh, we have to confront it and call it out.

MARQUARDT: But when the president talks about George Soros trying to buy the election and when there are allegations that Soros is funding this caravan of migrants, which we now know Rob Bowers has posted about, you don't see any connection there with this darkening language, this dangerous language?

ROTHFUS: No, you need to stay focused. You need to stay focused what happened here. We had an individual who was spewing hatred on social media. He said he wanted to kill Jewish people. You know, I was in Jerusalem about a year and a half ago visiting the Yad Vashem, the holocaust memorial. And I remember seeing a picture there of a woman holding a child about to be murdered, about to be shot.

That's the kind of hatred that we saw happen here in Pittsburgh yesterday. This is an individual who put this information out. We have to call it out, and to start drawing any kind of inferences from anything other than what this was -- this was an act of hate, an act of Semitism, anti-Semitism that we need to call out around the world.

MARQUARDT: Congressman, as you know all too well after these incidents we as a country always ask ourselves how on earth could this have happened again. There's the argument that we shouldn't be talking about politics during a time of grief. We shouldn't be talking about what should be done in terms of gun control. We heard the president yesterday talking about how this tragedy could have been avoided if that synagogue had had an armed guard. And there are several, many critics of the president who have come out saying that essentially that is victim blaming.

Do you agree with the president that that's the measure that should be taken, that there shouldn't be any sort of discussion about gun control now?

ROTHFUS: Anything that takes the focus off of what this was, an act of hatred, an act of anti-Semitism, that's what the focus should be on today. We have to call it out where it happens. We have to be -- people have been told see something, say something. Somebody may have seen what this person was doing and we have to have a culture of accountability where people do call out this kind of rhetoric or whatever he was putting out.

To say that there should have been armed guards or to call for gun control takes away the focus of what this should be. This was an act of hate. This man went to that synagogue. He wanted to kill Jewish people. He was going to find a way to kill Jewish people whatever way he could. And that the root of it is anti-Semitism. You see it around the world and we have to stay focused on what this was.

MARQUARDT: All right, Congressman, I think you agree that there should be a conversation going forward about anti-Semitism, about that -- about the hate, and about the division that is growing in this country.

Congressman Keith Rothfus, our thoughts of course go out to you, everyone in 12th District and everyone in Pittsburgh. Thanks very much.

All right. CNN's special coverage from Pittsburgh continues after this quick break.


[20:16:54] MARQUARDT: Now this is one of the most chilling details from yesterday's mass murder at the Pittsburgh synagogue Tree of Life. Now just five minutes before the gunman opened fire he posted this online. "HIAS likes to bring in invaders that kill our people. I can't sit by and watch my people get slaughtered. Screw your optics, I'm going in." Meaning going into that synagogue.

Now HIAS is a non-profit that was originally founded to aid Jewish refugees for decades. For a few weeks now several high-profile conservatives including President Trump have suggested a similar theory. They're accusing George Soros, the prominent billionaire, Jewish Democratic donor, of funding a caravan of migrants that is currently heading toward the United States.

So here to discuss all this is CNN global affairs analyst Max Boot. He's the author of "The Corrosion of Conservatism: Why I Left the Right."

Max, very simply do you see a connection between what President Trump and other prominent conservatives have been saying and what may have triggered Rob Bowers?

MAX BOOT, CNN GLOBAL AFFAIRS ANALYST: I think there are some disturbing connections you can point to. I think there's this whole climate of crazy rhetoric which has created the environment in which right-wing extremists can be radicalized and turn to violence. It's not necessarily because anybody who's saying go out and do something violent, but the rhetoric itself is so violent, it's over the top, that somebody who's already unbalanced like a Cesar Sayoc or a Robert Bowers can be moved into violence. And the level of intemperate rhetoric that you hear from Trump and the

Republicans has just been over the top whether it was denouncing Democrats as traitors and evil, or this hysteria about the caravan which appears to be the immediate motivating force for the massacre in Pittsburgh.

Republicans are really and Trump in particular and his enablers in FOX News and elsewhere, they have really been playing with fire.

MARQUARDT: Politicians often accused of talking out both sides of their mouth. President Trump yesterday very clearly and quickly came out condemning this, calling it an act of hate, calling it an anti- Semitic attack in no uncertain terms. But then throughout the course of the weekend and you just tweeted moments ago has proceeded with his regular attacks.

BOOT: Right.

MARQUARDT: Against the media and against liberals and Democrats.

Do you think the president understands that you can't really do both, and that his words have real impact?

BOOT: I don't -- I honestly don't know what he understands. I don't think he understands how a president is supposed to act in a situation like this. I don't think he understands that a president is supposed to bring Americans together in a time of crisis, to heal our wounds, to overcome a crisis, to unite the nation. That's not what he is doing. He is disuniting America. He's exacerbating partisan and sectarian divisions for his own political gain.

And yes, occasionally he can say the right thing after a tragedy like this. Often when he reads from scripted remarks and condemns violence. But then within minutes he's back to his regularly scheduled programming which is a nonstop diet of divisive hurtful rhetoric. I mean, even just today he was attacking Tom Steyer who was one of the targets of the MAGA bomber.


BOOT: Saying that Tom Steyer is a crazed and stumbling lunatic.

[20:20:03] We have never heard a president of the United States talk like this. And with Trump, it has become routine. And he can't bring himself to stop even when we see that dangerous consequences of creating this climate of opinion in America.

MARQUARDT: There was a remarkable tweet yesterday about Kevin McCarty, the House majority leader, where he said that Tom Steyer, you just mentioned, the billionaire Democrat, George Soros, also a billionaire Democrat, and Michael Bloomberg.

BOOT: Right.

MARQUARDT: Also a billionaire Democrat.

BOOT: Right.

MARQUARDT: Can't -- shouldn't be allowed to buy this election.

BOOT: Right.

MARQUARDT: McCarthy then took that tweet done, which seemed to be a tacit acknowledgement that, you know, after the synagogue shooting that that's going to come off as really, really anti-Semitic.

BOOT: Yes.

MARQUARDT: But it's just unbelievable to me how mainstream so much of this has gotten. He must recognize that those are dog whistles.

BOOT: That's exactly right. And FOX News and that crowd, Breitbart, and Infowars and the "Daily Caller," and Republican congressmen, they have been vilifying George Soros for years. And basically because George Soros is a rich Jew. And so when they talk about Soros, they're talking about a rich Jew who's in control of everything or when they talk about globalist, which is the term that Trump prefers.

MARQUARDT: Right. Right.

BOOT: When right-wing -- when Trump says globalist, right-wing extremists here, Jews, this is the repugnant dog whistling which has gone on. And you're right. It's not just Trump. It's a lot of Republicans, it's a lot of folks at FOX News. They really need to do some serious soul-searching here about where they have brought America.

MARQUARDT: Globalist, Soros, international banks, corrupt media, all things that anti-Semites associate with Jews.

President Obama has commented on this. So let's take a listen to that quickly.


BARACK OBAMA, FORMER U.S. PRESIDENT: I would like to think that everybody in America would think it's wrong to spend all your time from a position of power vilifying people, questioning their patriotism, calling them enemies of the people and then suddenly pretending that you're concerned about civility.


MARQUARDT: Can we talk about this debate that crown both sides are guilty of fomenting this division? Do you think that this is false equivalency?

BOOT: Yes, I do think it is a false equivalency. I mean, I've been critical of Democrats on some things. I don't think it makes sense for progressives to hound officials in restaurants.

MARQUARDT: Right. BOOT: I don't think Hillary Clinton should be saying we don't need

civility. All these things are mistakes. But you can't speak about that in the same breath as you speak about this hateful and temperate rhetoric from people like Donald Trump where he's actually encouraging violence, where he's celebrating a congressman who physically assaulted a reporter. When he is talking about immigrants as being animals, when he is embracing nationalism in America first.

This is an entirely different category. This is not, you know, just getting upset and protesting. This is going to a much darker place, and Republicans, you know, are trying this false equivalence after years of condemning false moral equivalence. That is exactly what they're engaging in right now.

MARQUARDT: Max Boot, thank you so much for joining us. Appreciate it.

All right. Coming up, the suspected gunman in Pittsburgh set to be in court tomorrow. He faces 22 charges as police search for surveillance video to help them piece together the moments before and during the attack. We will get an update on the investigation. That's coming up next.


[20:26:51] MARQUARDT: We're getting new details about the suspected gunman in the Pittsburgh synagogue shooting. Sources telling CNN that Robert Bowers legally purchased three of the handguns that he used in the attack. But there is a fourth weapon, and it's not clear if that weapon which is an AR-15 assault style rifle was legally purchased or not. Bowers faces 29 charges including hate crimes.

So for more we go to Miguel Marquez who is on the ground there in Pittsburgh.

Miguel, we know that the FBI is looking into whether these -- into these guns, specifically that AR-15, but they're also looking for surveillance video.

MIGUEL MARQUEZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: They're looking for a lot of things, and we now know an official telling us that he -- Mr. Bowers had 21 guns in total registered to him. It's not clear if he still owned all of those guns, but it is a very large number of guns, obviously.

They're looking at surveillance video. They're looking at his house. They were in his home for many, many hours. Computer, phones, his car, they went through that with a fine tooth come, and they're looking for that surveillance video trying to put together a picture not only for evidence for this case but trying to understand what it was that drove this guy to this just horrific act.

And we have met many people not only neighbors but people who have known him for many, many years. One woman calling him just a lost soul, someone who couldn't hold a job, went from job to job and couldn't quite figure out life. This is somebody from what we understand had a pretty difficult life as well, but he never expressed the sort of hatred, the anti-Semitism, the -- this deep well of hatred that he had for Jews.

None of that was apparent in his public life. Privately and underneath, clearly that was going on in his life. If you knew where to look online, not on Twitter, not on Facebook, but other social media, he was posting just horrendous stuff about Jews. In particularly there was one group, HIAS, the Hebrew immigrant aid society that does resettle immigrants Jews and people of all -- from all countries, all religions.

They did a video down in the border several days ago. 17 days ago Mr. Bowers posted about that group saying that they were responsible for bringing in invaders up from Central America to come slaughter our own people. When he went in to that synagogue he said that he didn't care about the optics about what he was about to do apparently. He was just going in. So now investigators try to put everything together to understand how somebody who seemed to not cast a shadow in his own life could be capable of something so horrendous -- Alex.

MARQUARDT: Yes. He also posted about how President Trump had too many Jews around him, using a horrible racial slur, and how Trump couldn't make America great again until there were fewer Jews around him. So we know that investigators are looking into a lot of that social media history.

Miguel Marquez in Pittsburgh, thanks very much.

All right, well, the city of Pittsburgh is in mourning of course and understandably on edge after this weekend's mass shooting. The Jewish Federation of Pittsburgh is telling CNN that it is way too early to say whether the community will push for adding permanent security to Pittsburgh area synagogues as was suggested by the president.

[20:30:02] So for more on that I want to bring in CNN national security analyst Lisa Monaco.

During the Obama administration, Lisa, you were the assistant to the president for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism. So I want to ask you first, are you surprised that the authorities have filed hate crime charges? Because we always talk about in the wake of these things whether it shouldn't be classified as domestic terrorism.

LISA MONACO, CNN SENIOR NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: Well, good to be with you, Alex. No, I'm not surprised at all that they filed hate crime charges. Actually, the specific charges thus far filed in the criminal complaint have to do with obstructing the free exercise of religion and doing so in the course of committing a crime with a firearm.

Those are initial charges, Alex. It's very important to understand that what we'll likely see from the federal prosecutor in this matter is an indictment subsequent after some further investigation. And we're likely to see additional charges, I would imagine.

But when it comes to the federal criminal code, Alex, what folks should understand, there is no crime that he could be charged with called domestic terrorism. There is a definition of domestic terrorism in our criminal code. But there is no charge for domestic terrorism that he could be charged with.

The definition, of course, of domestic terrorism is violence perpetrated upon a civilian population for political reasons or in order to coerce a civilian population. And if it's done here in the United States it constitutes domestic terrorism. But again there's no federal criminal charge labeled domestic terrorism.

MARQUARDT: Very important to make that point. 29 charges so far, as you mentioned there could be more.

Lisa, we learned a lot about the suspect very quickly. Investigators seizing or finding his weapons, delving into his social media posts. They have said that he acted alone and wasn't linked to anybody else. At this point what more are they going to be looking for?

MONACO: So they're going to be looking at his entire digital footprint. All right. All of his social media history, looking at e- mails. They'll be talking to people who knew him, people who he was engaged with in the community, relatives, friends, et cetera. So they'll be getting a very, very full picture of him. And then of course in this instance unlike in other mass shootings where we've seen, where the perpetrator also dies in the event, he of course will -- was wounded as I understand it based on the reporting.

But investigators will be trying to learn as much as they can from him down the line based on what people -- what people have said about what he has said to them and looking at his entire, as I said, digital footprint.

MARQUARDT: One of the first reactions that we heard from the president shortly after this -- this horrific massacre took place was that perhaps things could have been a little bit differently if there had been security inside. Let's quickly take a listen to what he said.


DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: This is case where if they had an armed guard inside, they might have been able to stop him immediately. Maybe there would have been nobody killed except for him, frankly. So it's a very, very -- very difficult situation.


MARQUARDT: Now we now know that Rob Bowers used an AR-15 assault- style weapon. In the past after mass shootings like this we've heard cries for renewed debate over gun control. The president there presumably not leaving any room for that debate.

How do you respond to this notion that we should have more armed officers inside places like synagogues and in the past as has been mentioned for schools as well? MONACO: Well, look, I think that these types of responses ought to be

informed by law enforcement experts and homeland security experts. And they ought to be driven by what the law enforcement experts say would be a help in this type of situation. And so I doubt very highly that any of those comments -- that those commentaries have been informed by law enforcement experts.

The other thing I would say, Alex, that is very important to understand as this investigation goes forward, the investigators and the prosecutors are going to be looking very hard at how it is that this individual came into possession of 21 -- as I understand it, 21 firearms including an AR-15 as you mentioned. And so that will be a very important part of this investigation.

What were the circumstances of his coming into possession of all of those firearms? Were they all legally purchased? Were there any circumstances in his background that should have indicated that he was a prohibited purchaser? And so that's going to be a very important part of this investigation as well I imagine.

MARQUARDT: Lisa, quickly, we just have a few seconds left.

[20:35:03] This is obviously a very heated political environment. We're just over a week from the midterms. We've seen so much of this divisive, heated political rhetoric on display, hatred of different religious views, different political views. How do change the tenor? How do you change the conversation and the rhetoric?

MONACO: Well, look, Alex, I'm not a political commentator. That's not my area of expertise. I do know, though, that in the wake of these horrific, horrific acts of violence as we saw in Pittsburgh, in the mail bombings that occurred earlier this week in an unprecedented attempted assassination of two presidents and other individuals who have been critical of the president, I think it's incumbent upon all leaders including the president, but all leaders to try to appeal to the better angels of our nature, to try and unify and bring the country together in the wake of such horrific violence. That's what I think we should be hoping for.

MARQUARDT: Sadly no sign that that is going to happen at least for now.

Lisa Monaco, thanks so much for joining us tonight.

MONACO: Thank you.

MARQUARDT: All right, coming up from Pittsburgh to the Western Wall in Jerusalem. How the synagogue shooting is being felt on the other side of the world tonight.


MARQUARDT: I want to show a powerful moment from Pittsburgh from earlier tonight at the end of the interfaith vigil.

[20:40:05] These are three rabbis from three different congregations at the Tree of Life Synagogue. They're embracing, they're holding each other in mourning. These three rabbis together lost 11 members of their congregations.

And nearly 6,000 miles away from the horror at Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh the heartache is palpable Jerusalem, the heart of Judaism. Some 500 Americans and Israelis grieved tonight at a vigil in Zion Square.

So for more we go CNN's Oren Liebermann, our Jerusalem correspondent.

Oren, tell us about the scene there. How the victims are being honored and remembered.

OREN LIEBERMANN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Alex, Zion Square is one of the central squares of Jerusalem about halfway between where I'm sitting here talking to you now. And the Old City just a short walk away here. And as I walked by that there were scores of people inside Zion Square, many of them holding hands, some of them singing. And it seemed some of them simply there for the comfort of having each other there.

But that gives you an idea of how quickly and how powerfully the impact was felt from the shooting at the Tree of Life Synagogue as you point out thousands of miles away. It wasn't just tonight. It started immediately last night when we saw Tel Aviv municipal building lit up with the colors of the U.S. and Israeli flags. Alternating between the two of them to show that Israel stands in solidarity with the U.S. and especially with Pittsburgh as the community there mourns the loss of these Jewish lives in this horrific shooting.

It was that impact felt so quickly as we saw Israeli politicians, officials, and leaders as well as Jewish community leaders here issuing and letting the community in Pittsburgh know that they have support here and offering condolences and saying that the whole country here mourns the loss of lives there.

Earlier today our crew went to the Western Wall, one of the holiest sites in the world for Jews, to speak with some of the people there to get their sense of how they feel after this shooting. Here is what some of them said.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Always it's an illusion that Jews in America can feel safe. Actually we were jealous in Jerusalem to see the successful and safe community in the States, and now it seems that all over the world Jews are not so safe. Apparently also in America.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We feel their sadness and we are all one people. We're Americans, and we believe in being able to have your own religion, whatever you want to do, and to have somebody be so, so much full of hatred we condone it. I mean, it's not America.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're all one nation and what makes us different is we're really one spirit together. We're one soul. So when someone gets hurt in America everyone in Israel feels it into their soul because we're one connected soul.


LIEBERMANN: And that last point is worth re-emphasizing because it has been at the heart of so many messages we've seen, the idea that the Jewish people no matter where they are, are one connected soul.

And Alex, that was at the center of so many of these messages that an attack on a Jewish community anywhere is an attack on the entire Jewish community, and that's why even thousands of miles away this hurts so much here -- Alex.

MARQUARDT: Yes. Reverberating in Jewish around the world.

Oren Liebermann in Jerusalem, thanks so much.

All right. Well, joining me now is Jeremy Pappas, the Anti-Defamation League's regional director for Western Pennsylvania and Ohio.

Jeremy, thanks so much for joining us tonight. I want to share with our audience something that you tweeted earlier today. You said, quote, "I'm walking the streets of Pittsburgh. This is the conversation that I heard next to me of a little boy and his mom, quote, 'Mommy, so this is where the people were killed just because they went to Shul, silence.' What can you really say? The boy is exactly right."

Jeremy, can you answer that question? How should Jewish parents be speaking to their kids now about what it's like to be Jewish in America in 2018?

JEREMY PAPPAS, ANTI-DEFAMATION LEAGUE REGIONAL DIRECTOR: It's really an unfathomable conversation that we're having here in 2018 as we are mourning the most destructive attack on the Jewish community, the largest anti-Semitic attack on the Jewish community in our history. There are no words. And I think about it all the time what would I say if my son was no older than 2 years old, what would I tell him? And there are no words.

And while ADL has resources for these types of situations, when something like this happens we mourn and we show up for the community. And that's why 5,000 people or however many thousand were here today, we just show up. That's what we do.

MARQUARDT: How does a community like this begin to start healing? I mean we've seen these vigils, but going forward, they lean on each other? How do they heal?

PAPPAS: We continue to show up. People continue to show up and they attend -- they go to services at their local congregations, they come together as a community. They start to report anti-Semitic incidents as they happen in the community. You know, just last night in Ohio there was a swastika Saturday night party at a local haunted house that took place in rural Ohio.

[20:45:06] And I've received over 100 e-mails about that incident in just 24 hours. And that happened last night. That happened last night, not last week. It happened last night after the attack here in Pittsburgh. And what gives me hope is that people are reporting those incidents. So what do we do? We move forward, we continue to show up, we don't give in to hate, and we take an active part in our daily lives to ensure that anti-Semitism is -- can be rooted from society.

MARQUARDT: So why have these incidents and these people essentially been unleashed? We've been quoting all weekend this figure from your organization, the Anti-Defamation League, that just last year in 2017 the number of anti-Semitic incidents rose 57 percent. That's staggering. It's the largest single-year increase since your organization has been keeping track. So what do you think accounts for this spike?

PAPPAS: It's unbelievable to have a 57 percent rise in anti-Semitic incidents last year alone and knowing that so many of those incidents took place in K through 12 schools and on college campuses, it's really incumbent on leaders all across the political spectrum to speak out.

We cannot give platforms for anti-Semites to be out there speaking, whether that's on the internet, whether that's on social media platforms and whether that's in the public sphere. We need to call out hate and we need to call out anti-Semitism when it comes. No matter who says it and no matter where it comes from.

MARQUARDT: I think a lot of non-Jews in this country are not terribly aware what precautions Jewish communities have to take, whether it's in schools or at synagogues. Plenty of them have armed guards already. Plenty of them engaged in active shooter drills in case something like this is going to happen. We've heard the president say that maybe this might not have happened if there had been an armed guard at the Tree of Life Synagogue, which wouldn't have happened normally on a normal Saturday morning, normal Shabbat morning.

How do you think these Jewish organizations, buildings, schools, synagogues, museums are going to react to this going forward?

PAPPAS: It's -- it's a serious question that we need to address and obviously we work very closely with law enforcement across local and state and federal levels to ensure that synagogues and the Jewish community has the security that they need. And there needs to be a conversation, and we need to continue monitoring anti-Semitism across the board to ensure that incidents like these can be stopped before they occur. And it's -- we work very closely with local Jewish federations, with the SCAN Network to really ensure that we do have a monitored situation.

What we do moving forward is a real question that we need to address. But our view and the view of many is that we're safest and we're strongest when we're working in close connection across the Jewish community, and we're working in very close concert hand in hand with our law enforcement partners to ensure that these incidents can't occur.

MARQUARDT: Well, incredibly sad that that reassessment even needs to take place at all.

Jeremy Pappas, from the Anti-Defamation League, thanks so much.

PAPPAS: Great. Thanks for having me.

MARQUARDT: All right. As we go to break I want to share some more information about one of the victims of yesterday's horrific synagogue massacre.

This is Dr. Richard Gottfried. He was known as Rich. Rich and his wife opened a dental practice together in 1984. Rich's wife was Catholic and they prepared couples for marriage at her Catholic Church. Richard Gottfried was 65 years old.


[20:52:23] MARQUARDT: Tonight the man who authorities say mailed 14 pipe bombs across the country is in a Miami federal detention center. He's awaiting his first court appearance that's due to take place tomorrow. Cesar Sayoc was arrested on Friday and charged with five federal crimes in connection with those mailed pipe bombs. The targets of the bombs included two former presidents, a former secretary of state, a former vice president, and all people who have criticized Trump. You can see that list there.

CNN's Joe Johns joins me from Miami.

Joe, you've been following this story closely. What is the latest on the investigation and what we expect to see with Sayoc in court tomorrow?

JOE JOHNS, CNN SENIOR WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT: Well, Alex, let's start with what we expect to see. He is expected to appear in court here in Miami tomorrow afternoon. He's expected to be advised of his rights, advised of the complaint that was filed against him in the Southern District of New York. Asked if he needs an attorney. We have gotten conflicting information on that.

There's a report in the "New York Times" yesterday suggesting his family wants him to hire an attorney. However, the family attorney on "AC 360" on Friday said that he was suggesting in fact that Sayoc should, if he needed to, hire a public defender. We do know he is essentially homeless and has been, we're told, sleeping in his van.

The most important information probably out of all of this is that the federal authorities will be seeking to get Sayoc rather quickly out of Miami and back to New York where the complaint was filed against him and where he would stand charges. Of course the other issue is whether he is going to plead guilty or not. It's just not clear what he's going to do if the magistrate asks him if he's going to plead guilty or not guilty. So that's very important.

The evidence against him does seem to be overwhelming. Our colleagues here at CNN have reported that once the authorities got inside his van, they discovered, among other things, soldering equipment, stamps, paper, printing equipment and so forth. Even some powder. All of that could play into this case.

We have to see what happens tomorrow afternoon. Back to you, Alex.

MARQUARDT: Yes, we will. All right. Joe Johns in Miami, thank you so much.

Now coming up, words of wisdom from a legendary TV figure on how to cope with all the troubling headlines in the news these days.


[20:58:32] MARQUARDT: The Pittsburgh community and the entire country are in mourning tonight after a gunman killed 11 people worshipping in a synagogue in Pittsburgh on Saturday. Tributes for the victims are pouring in.

Here in New York City, you can see the Empire State Building there. It has dimmed its lights and it's displaying an orange halo. You can see it spinning around the spire right there. Orange is now often a color associated with gun violence. That is in tribute to the victims of the Tree of Life Synagogue massacre.

Now that massacre took place in Squirrel Hill, a neighborhood in Pittsburgh which was literally Mr. Rogers' neighborhood. So to that end, we end with the words of the American icon about how to cope with tragedy.


FRED ROGERS, "MISTER ROGERS' NEIGHBORHOOD": When I was a little boy and something bad happened in the news, my mother would tell me to look for the helpers. You'll always find people helping, she'd say. And I found that that's true.


MARQUARDT: That's it for me. Thanks so much for being with me. I'm Alex Marquardt and up next is the "PARTS UNKNOWN" special "Under the Tarp." Have a great night.