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Hundreds Arrested as Police Clash with Demonstrators; U.K. Defense Secretary Sacked over Huawei Leak; Olympian with Elevated Testosterone Loses Appeal; India Braces for Powerful Tropical Cyclone Fani; A Jewish Girl's Past Brought to Life on Instagram; Facebook CEO Promises Greater Data Security; Barr Defiantly Defends Handling Of Mueller Report; Democrats Grill Attorney General Over Mueller Report; Multiple Democrats Call On William Barr To Resign; Multiple Democrats Call on William Barr To Resign; Trump Praises Barr: He Did A Great Job; Guaido Calls For Third Day of Anti-Maduro Protests. Aired 1-2a ET
Aired May 2, 2019 - 01:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[01:00:00] JOHN VAUSE, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Facebook is trying to get into the dating game. But do we really want Mark Zuckerberg in our bedrooms?
Democrats in the U.S. House of Representatives will not have their chance to question the Attorney General on Thursday because William Barr is refusing to show up. A day earlier a Barr was grilled by Democrat senators over his handling of the Mueller report, and there were plenty of fireworks during his testimony. We begin our coverage with CNN's Manu Raju.
WILLIAM BARR, ATTORNEY GENERAL, UNITED STATES: It was my decision how and when to make it public, not Bob Mueller's.
MANU RAJU, CNN SENIOR CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Attorney General Bill Barr to fire while under fire for his handling of Robert Mueller's report hours after new revelations that the special counsel sent a letter to Barr expressing concerns about how he summarized the findings of the sweeping probe.
BARR: His work concluded when he sent his report to the Attorney General. At that point, it was my baby.
RAJU: Barr said he spoke to the special counsel about Mueller's frustrations.
BARR: I said, Bob what's with the letter, you know. Why would you just pick up the phone and call me if there's an issue?
RAJU: And contended that Mueller was complaining about the media's portrayal of the findings.
BARR: He said that they were concerned about the way the media was playing this and felt that it was important to get out the summaries which they felt would put their work in proper context and avoid some of the confusion that was emerging. And I asked him if he felt that my letter was misleading or inaccurate and he said no.
RAJU: But Mueller does not match the media coverage in his letter, expressing instead that Barr did not fully capture the context, nature, and substance of this office's work and conclusions. Democrats pounced on that.
SEN. RICHARD BLUMENTHAL (D-CT): This letter was an extraordinary act. A career prosecutor rebuking the Attorney General of the United States memorializing in writing, right?
BARR: You know, the letter is a bit snitty and I think it was probably written by one of his staff people.
RAJU: Democrats argued the revelations contradicted Barr's previous sworn testimony and accused him of lying when he said this April 10th.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Did Bob Mueller support your conclusion?
BARR: I don't know whether Bob Mueller supported my conclusion.
RAJU: Today Barr evaded explaining the discrepancy instead bringing up a different answer from a different hearing.
BARR: The question was relating to unidentified members who were expressing frustration over the accuracy relating to findings. I don't know what that refers to at all.
RAJU: Democrats did not buy his answer.
SEN. PATRICK LEAHY (D-VT): I feel your answer purposely misleading and I think others do too.
SEN. SHELDON WHITEHOUSE (D-RI): That's the masterful hair-splitting.
RAJU: The senators sharply questioned why Barr chose not to prosecute Trump on obstruction of justice despite ten episodes cited in the report detailing Trump's efforts to undercut the probe including asking then-White House Counsel Don McGahn to remove Mueller a special counsel.
BARR: There is a distinction between saying to someone go fire him, go fire Mueller and saying have him removed based on conflict.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And what would --
BARR: They have different results.
RAJU: But in his report, Mueller wrote that in seeking to fire the special counsel, the President sought to exclude his and his campaigns conduct from the investigation's scope. In a tense line of questioning, Senator Mazie Hirono lashed out at Barr.
SEN. MAZIE HIRONO (D-HI): You lied to Congress. But now we know more about your deep involvement in trying to cover up for Donald Trump. SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM (D-SC): Seven minutes --
HIRONO: I am done. Thank you very much.
GRAHAM: And you slandered this man from top to bottom.
RAJU: Republicans meanwhile didn't focus as much on the Mueller report, instead criticizing the Justice Department's handling of the Clinton e-mail probe and pointing to texts from former FBI agent Peter Strzok.
GRAHAM: We know that the person in charge of investigating hated Trump's guts.
RAJU: Questioning why the Russia probe even began.
SEN. JOSH HAWLEY (R-MO): It's open blatant prejudice which tried to use that in order to overturn a democratic election. And to my mind, that's the real crisis here.
RAJU: Now, after the hearing, the Senate Judiciary Chairman Lindsey Graham said "it's over." He does not plan to bring in Bob Mueller for any questioning because he wants to move on to other issues. He does plan to send Mueller a letter asking him if there's anything he disagrees with from what he heard from Bill Barr's testimonials.
Much different on The house side run by Democrats. They do plan to bring in Bob Mueller and they want to bring in Barr to be questioned not just by members but also staff attorneys. And that has Bare objecting and threatening not to appear at a Thursday hearing. Democrats have threatened, if Barr doesn't show, they plan to subpoena him to compel his appearance. Manu Raju, CNN Capitol Hill.
[01:05:12] VAUSE: Joining me now from Los Angeles CNN Legal Analyst and Civil Rights Attorney Areva Martin and Political Analyst from Loyola Marymount University, Michael Genovese. Thank you both for being with us.
So Areva, first to you. Is there a legal basis for the Attorney General of the United States to refuse to appear before a congressional committee and ignore a subpoena from House Democrats?
AREVA MARTIN, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: No, John. There is no legal basis. And what we are seeing from Attorney General William Barr is that he is you know, telling the Congress basically that he does not have to comply with their constitutional mandate of oversight.
He is acting as if he is the president's personal attorney. He might as well be Rudy Giuliani in terms of how he conducted himself in these hearings, and how he's conducting himself with respect to his interactions and communications with the United States Congress.
And now it's up to Jerry Nadler. Jerry Nadler has a decision to make whether he will hold the Attorney General in contempt, whether he will go into court and try to enforce a subpoena to force him to appear. But Congress clearly has an oversight obligation under the United States Constitution.
And Barr's you know, claim that he doesn't want to appear because he doesn't want to be questioned by staff members, attorneys that are staff for the United States Congress and this committee, they're absolutely baseless arguments on his part.
VAUSE: Well, here is the House Judiciary Chairman Jerry Nadler you mentioned. Here is his response to Barr's refusal to appear on Thursday.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. JERRY NADLER (D-NY): He is trying to blackmail the committee. I can understand given how dishonest he has been since March 24th at the earliest -- since March 24th at the latest, I can understand why he -- why he is afraid of facing more effective examination.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAUSE: So Michael, to you, could you argue that Barr is anything but terrified, anything but afraid of the House moves hold him in contempt, issue a sensor, so that then what? There's no rule price to pay. It's like they get by wet piece of lettuce.
MICHAEL GENOVESE, POLITICAL ANALYST, LOYOLA MARYMOUNT UNIVERSITY: John, John, John, that was a pretty snitty question you just asked me but I'm a good sport and I'm going to answer it. And the answer is that historically, Congress has a very strong claim to have their subpoenas answered. And historically you find cases where for example in 1930, the Secretary of Commerce defied a congressional subpoena. He was imprisoned. The good news for him is he was imprisoned in the Willard Hotel which is a luxury hotel.
But the modern wars of subpoenas really started in the Clinton years when Representative Burton who head to the Oversight Committee of the House subpoenaed administration -- Clinton administration people over a thousand times in a five year period.
And so what we see is that history is on the side of Congress. It's tough to defy a subpoena from Congress. It's tough to get away with it. And even if you do get away with it in technical sense, politically you'll pay a big price for it.
VAUSE: OK. Well, Democrat Senator Mazie Hirono put the issue of criminality to one side. She very bluntly asked Barr if he approves of the President's behavior as outlined in the Mueller report. And he's part of that exchange.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HIRONO: Do you think it's OK for a president to ask his White House Counsel to lie?
BARR: Well, I'm going to talk about what's criminal. HIRONO: No, we've already knowledge that you think it was not a
crime. I'm just asking whether you think it's OK. Even if it's not a crime, do you think it's OK for the President to ask his White House Counsel to lie?
BARR: Which --
HIRONO: Look, if you're just going to go back to whether or not --
BARR: No, which event are you talking about?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAUSE: So Areva, we have you know, the highest law officer in the land in the United States, the Attorney General, who seems unable to say whether or not it's OK for the President to ask his counsel to lie. What does it say about the current state of politics?
MARTIN: John, he wasn't unable to say that. He absolutely refuse to state on the record that it is not OK for the President of the United States to ask the White House Counsel to tell a lie. Look at the dangerous precedent that's being set by Barr's unwillingness to state the obvious.
I can say to my kid it's not OK to lie. We can say to our co-workers. We can say that without any hesitation. But we cannot get the United States of -- the United States -- the Attorney General of the United States to say it emphatically that it is not OK.
And whether you determine that you could prove beyond reasonable doubt the very high legal standard that a crime can be committed, we can all agree it's not a partisan issue about whether the President should be conduct -- you know instructing anyone to tell a lie.
And the fact that he didn't -- wasn't able to state that just you know, I think one other example of why this Attorney General has lost so much credibility and why we see so many Democratic lawmakers calling for him to resign.
[01:10:11] VAUSE: And one of the worst moments of Barr came during questioning by Senator Kamala Harris, a Democrat who is also running for president. Here she is.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. KAMALA HARRIS (D-CA): Has the President or anyone at the White House ever asked or suggested that you open an investigation of anyone? Yes or no please, sir.
BARR: The President or anybody else --
HARRIS: It seems you would remember something like that and be able to tell us.
BARR: Yes, but I'm trying to grapple with the word suggest. I mean, there have been discussions of matters out there that they have not asked me to open an investigation but --
HARRIS: Perhaps they suggested.
BARR: I don't know. I wouldn't say suggested.
BARR: I don't know.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAUSE: You know, Michael, the answer here is yes. The President has not only suggested but demanded because we've seen the tweets.
GENOVESE: We have and we've also read the report. And so there's so much damaging information in there. But you know, there's no need to sugarcoat this. Attorney General Barr has been lying. He lied the day that he made his announcement in preparation to release the report when he said there was full White House cooperation. There was not. The President refused to testify in person.
And so the Attorney General has dishonored himself and the Department of Justice. There's a lot of repair work that needs to be done. He can't do it. He's lost the trust of the American people. He did a lousy job defending the lousy job he did. And now we're all going to be suffering from this because you can't trust the Attorney General of the United States.
He put party and president over Constitution and country. And the Democrats are calling for his head. I'm not sure he can survive this.
VAUSE: Well, what we saw with that answer you know, struggling with the idea of you know, what suggest means and someone that kind of stuff. It was reminisce of that infamous moment when Bill Clinton was being questioned by prosecutors in the Monica Lewinsky affair. Here it is if you -- just as a reminder.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: -- there no sex of any kind in any manner, shape or form, with President Clinton, was an utterly false statement. Is that correct?
BILL CLINTON, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: It depends on what the meaning of the word is.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAUSE: You know, Aretha, the meaning of the word is, is you know this is Bill Barr the Attorney General struggling with the concept of what you know suggested means.
MARTIN: Yes. I don't think -- again, I don't want to give him the benefit of the doubt. He was not struggling. He was purposely evading answering that question. He knows the answer to it. He knows that Trump has talked with him about opening investigations against what we probably can surmise are his political opponents because he's talked about it openly.
That's the thing that's so galling about Barr's testimony. He was refusing to answer questions that Trump himself have made clear for the record. So it didn't take a whole lot for us to know the answer to that question. He simply refused to tell the truth.
And I have to agree with Michael. Barr has been lying since the first day that he you know, came back onto the scene, when he was in his confirmation hearings. He hasn't stopped lying yet, and he has just damaged his own personal reputation and the reputation of the Department of Justice. And that's a really sad commentary for where we are in our body politic.
VAUSE: But you know, there are others out there who believe that you know, this was a great performance. I mean, there is an editorial running in the in the Wall Street Journal which described Barr as a real Attorney General. Here's part of it. "Washington pile-ons are never pretty but this week's political setup of Attorney General William Barr is disreputable even by Beltway standards. Democrats and the media are turning the A.G. into a villain for doing his duty and making the hard decisions that Special Counsel Robert Muller abdicated.
Just as a counterpoint to that over The Week. To be blunt, Barr's appalling testimony today is further evidence of the Trump administration's intent to create something like the executive branch crime syndicate of lawlessness, hegemonic branch of government that is above the law, beyond scrutiny, and beneath contempt. The Trump administration has triggered the most serious constitutional crisis since the Civil War.
So Michael, we either have you know, the man described as a real Attorney General or with man who is helping trigger the most serious constitutional crisis since the Civil War. And it depends if you are conservative if you're a liberal.
GENOVESE: No, I don't think it does, John. I think it depends on whether you look at facts or if you look at fantasy. And you can see whatever you want to see in something if you really want to see it. But if you look at the facts, you -- for example the morning that the Attorney General released the report, I saw his press conference and I turned to my wife and said it's over.
The President didn't commit a crime. We have to move on. And then I read the report. It bore no resemblance to what the Attorney General said was in that report. And so he's lost credibility. There's -- it's not a partisan argument anymore, it's simply a matter of can you read the facts. There's one and one equals two. And the Attorney General says one and one equals Trump is innocent.
[01:15:04] VAUSE: At the end of the day, there is one person, though, who is very, very, very happy with Bill Barr.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES (via Boston Herald Radio): I heard that the Attorney General was really, really solid and did a great job today.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAUSE: And, Areva, that pretty much says it all.
MARTIN: Well, that says it all because, John, what we do know about Barr today, was that he was playing for an audience of one, and now he has gotten affirmation from, you know, Trump, who obviously was the only person he was concerned about.
And we have watched Trump, for the last two years, talk about how upset he was and annoyed with Attorney General Jeff Sessions, and how he wanted an attorney general that would stand up for him at all costs, and he got that today in Barr.
Barr was willing to lie, he was willing to evade, he was willing to undermine the Department of Justice all in, you know, all to advance the agenda of Donald Trump, even to use Donald Trump's language, no collusion, and he did that over and over again today.
So, no surprise that Trump has come out and has applauded his performance.
VAUSE: Michael, very quickly, Donald Trump, we've said this before. I think we now know for certain, Donald Trump finally has the attorney general he always wanted.
GENOVESE: He does. And lost amid this controversy is the fact that Russia was engaged in an effort to undermine our democracy. The President isn't talking about that, the President isn't doing much about that, and that is the national crisis.
We have a constitutional crisis. We also have a National Security crisis that the President is letting go unattended to, and that's going to, really, come back to haunt us.
VAUSE: Yes. There are a lot of things here which seemed to have a very big sting in the tail, which we are yet to find out. But Michael and Areva, thank you so much, really appreciate you both being with us.
GENOVESE: Thank you, John.
MARTIN: Thanks, John.
VAUSE: Next up on CNN NEWSROOM, the smallest of cracks appearing in the Maduro regime with the head of the secret police declaring he can no longer support a government of thieves and scoundrels. Also, in Paris, they celebrated May Day with tear gas, water cannon, rock- throwing protesters.
VAUSE: Well, the head of Venezuela's secret police has publicly broken ranks with President Maduro, in an open letter. He accuses the government of widespread corruption and called for a new way of doing politics. He was fired by President Maduro a short time later.
But he's the highest ranking security official to break from the Maduro administration since the opposition leader and National Assembly President Juan Guaido, call for a military uprising.
[01:20:07] Guaido is now urging supporters to take to the streets for a third straight day of anti-government protest, details now from CNN's Nick Paton Walsh, reporting in from Caracas.
NICK PATON WALSH, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: The battle for control, playing out in the streets of Caracas and across Venezuela, as supporters and opponents of President Nicolas Maduro hold competing demonstrations.
Now, it is day two of the violent clashes which have left one person dead and more than 100 injured, the embattled president hoping to quell the uprising, taking to the airwaves overnight.
Stating, with the truth as a sword, as a shield, we face so many attacks. We have emerged victorious in every situation. And we will continue to emerge victorious.
The government has been impeding, at times, Venezuela's access to social media and news platforms. Opposition leader, Juan Guaido, the president of the National Assembly here, addressing the crowd, he admitted he hadn't gathered enough military defectors yesterday, yet still declared this as "the final face to oust Maduro."
Encouraging his supporters, he calls for daily protests. The uprising is being closely monitored by the U.S. government, and though the top military brass has said they don't presently see a role for American Armed Forces in the conflict, the Joint Chiefs Chairman cautions.
GEN. JOSEPH F. DUNFORD, U.S. JOINT CHIEFS CHAIRMAN: We are doing what we can now to collect intelligence and make sure we have good visibility on what's happening down in Venezuela and also be prepared to support the President should he require more from the U.S. military.
WALSH: Just today after the U.S. claimed it was only Moscow that managed to convince Nicolas Maduro not to flee his country on a jet to Cuba. Tonight, the Russian Foreign Minister is warning of grave consequences if the U.S. continues, "Aggressive steps in Venezuela."
The rhetoric between the U.S. and Russia now escalating, at the Trump administration believes the walls are closing in on Maduro.
JOHN BOLTON, U.S. NATIONAL SECURITY ADVISER: I think Maduro is now surrounded by scorpions in a bottle and it's only a matter of time.
VAUSE: Our thanks to Nick Paton Walsh for that report. And earlier, I spoke with Victoria Gaytan of Global Americans, a think tank, focusing on foreign policy in Latin America.
VAUSE: So, Victoria, there was a rally in Caracas on Wednesday, Juan Guaido was addressing supporters, at one point, he asked this rhetorical question. Here it is.
JUAN GUAIDO, PRESIDENT, NATIONAL ASSEMBLY OF VENEZUELA (through translator): How much longer to gain freedom? How much longer to recover electricity, water, relatives? How much sacrifice will freedoms cost, democracy, happiness? At the moment, I can't pin it down, days, hours, weeks, but I want to say something, we are on the right path.
VAUSE: Yes. Perhaps, he could have added, you know, months or, you know, maybe years, or possibly never, especially if he doesn't receive significant support from the military because, at this point, it's difficult to see how President Maduro is forced out of office, while the generals remain loyal to him. Is there another path that he could take?
VICTORIA GAYTAN, PROGRAM MANAGER, GLOBAL AMERICANS: You are absolutely right. It's very difficult to put a timeline on what's happening right now in Venezuela, particularly what happened yesterday. Juan Guaido, some people say, it was very unsuccessful, but there are some signs of hope and there are some signs of small fractures within the government.
As to what will happen next, as to a timeline onto where free and fair elections will happen in the country, it's difficult to say at this moment. But can we say it was completely unsuccessful, what happened yesterday? No. There are some signs of small fractures within the military.
There were a few elements accompanying, as we saw, in the images, Juan Guaido, uprising, calling the military to stand against Maduro. There was also the very, very symbolic figure of Leopoldo Lopez next Juan Guaido.
He was under house arrest and now he's out on the streets, protesting as well. And he is also taking asylum, yes, in the Spanish embassy, but the sign of Leopoldo Lopez, the symbolic figure of Leopoldo Lopez yesterday, in the streets, is a good sign.
VAUSE: What you are saying it will be a slow burn, the overall process here, much lower, I guess, than many had expected. And you mentioned the U.S. has been enthusiastic in its support of Guaido, the first of, at least, 50 countries to recognize Guaido as interim president.
On Wednesday, the National Security Adviser John Bolton, tweeted, Interim President Guaido bravely leads the Venezuelan people through the streets, while Maduro hides in a military bunker somewhere, surrounded by his Cuban overseers and corrupt cronies. Guaido shows the courage of a leader, Maduro is nothing but a cowardly autocrat. What is interesting here is, the shift towards calling out Maduro's allies, in this case, Cuba, which, Donald Trump, the U.S. President, threatened on Tuesday, you know, with a full embargo, further sanctions if it continues to support Maduro.
[01:25:11] Is this a shift which indicates Washington is, sort of, running out of options when it comes to putting pressure directly on Caracas?
GAYTAN: When you hear State Secretary Mike Pompeo, National Security Adviser John Bolton, this -- they are still under the same discourse that all options are on the table. And Secretary Pompeo did say that there were some red lines that he would not discuss out in the public, but presumably, that would be a move by Russia or even Cuba on forcing Maduro into something else.
The U.S. is stance by its policy that all options are on the table, but they are following up the situation very closely, providing help in any way it can, although, they don't rule out any option and that is quite conflicting.
VAUSE: You know, we had heard again from John Bolton, offering his assessment of just how vital the Cubans are when it comes to propping up the Maduro regime. This is what he said.
BOLTON: I think the key point here is that if this afternoon, 20 to 25,000 Cubans left Venezuela, I think Maduro would fall by midnight. It's this foreign presence that sits on top of the military, sits on top of the government that makes it impossible for the people's voice to be heard.
VAUSE: Firstly, isn't really that simple, 25,000 foreign troops from Cuba, all that stand between Maduro and the opposition forcing him from power? And where does he get that number, 25,000? Is it confirmed or is it something, you know, just his assessment?
GAYTAN: Well, presumably, the U.S. government has kept contact on ground and their intelligence information is much better than what I can provide our audience, John, but absolutely, there is Cuban presence in Venezuela. There is infiltrated presence in the intelligence agency in Venezuela, the SEBIN, and well, what we have seen in the past week, there's also Russian involvement at this point.
So, the U.S. is following very, very closely whatever move the Russians and whatever move the Cuban government is doing in Venezuela.
VAUSE: What I found interesting in the last couple of days is that Juan Guaido remains a free man, not just a free man, but able to walk the streets, rally his supporters, address the crowds. He hasn't been detained. He hasn't been put under house arrest.
Is the regime running the risk of looking weak or maybe fearful or, you know -- and allowing Guaido to continue to build his credibility the longer he's out there, as a free man?
GAYTAN: It's a tricky situation for Maduro, that of having Juan Guaido in the streets, because that would be a sign of weakness, right? But also, imprisoning Guaido or taking another stance against Guaido, would also -- would also raise red flags, not only in the U.S., but also to other international partners that are following the situation closely.
Everyone has -- that is rallying their support behind Juan Guaido has warned Maduro not to -- not to take any movement forward against the security of Juan Guaido or his family.
VAUSE: Yes. Essentially, they want hands off, I guess. But, like you said, it does run the risk of, you know, him, appearing weak and unable to control the situation. Victoria, thank you so much. We appreciate you being with us. Thank you.
GAYTAN: Thank you.
VAUSE: Next up on CNN NEWSROOM, a landmark decision about gender, rocketing the world of sport, and the future of one Olympian.
[01:30:39] JOHN VAUSE, CNN ANCHOR: Welcome back everybody. You're watching CNN NEWSROOM.
I'm John Vause with the headlines this hour.
A growing number of Democrats are calling for U.S. Attorney General William Barr to resign. They're saying he misled Congress and the American people about Special Counsel Robert Mueller's report on Russian election meddling. Barr defended his decision Wednesday at a Senate hearing.
The head of Venezuela's secret police has broken ranks with the Maduro government as anti-government protestors sweep the country. He's the highest ranking official to defect. In an open letter, he criticizes those in power for corruption. Opposition leader Juan Guaido admits President Nicolas Maduro still has the backing of the military, but he is calling for more protests in the coming days.
Wikileaks founder Julian Assange has been sentenced to 50 weeks in prison for jumping bail when he took refuge in Ecuador's London embassy. At the time, he was wanted in Sweden on sexual assault and rape allegations. In a few hours, he faces a U.S. extradition hearing on conspiracy charges.
Paris police have made nearly 400 arrests after May Day demonstrations turned violent. Dozens of masked anarchists mixed in with so-called Yellow Vest protestors and were met with a massive security presence with riot police using tear gas and water cannons to clear the streets.
Details now from Ben Wedeman in Paris.
(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE) BEN WEDEMAN, CNN SENIOR INTEL CORRESPONDENT (on camera): We are in Place d'Italie where the march commemorating International Workers Day, May Day, ended up. It began in Montparnasse and what we saw there at the very beginning was a lot of tear gas being fired, clashes between protestors, and the security -- the police and the security. And of course, according to the French interior minister, as many as 7,400 policemen and security forces were deployed in the capital. That compared to only 1,500 the year before.
Now in terms of numbers, by mid afternoon, the authorities were saying that around 16,000 people had participated in the demonstrations in Paris. More than 150,000 around the country.
Now, these marches take place every year, and they do underscore the strength of the French labor movement. This also coincides with what is coming up on the 25th consecutive Saturday of demonstrations by these so called "gilet jaunes", the Yellow Vests who started as a protest over an increase in petrol taxes but has now broadened into something much larger.
President Emmanuel Macron did hold what he called a great national debate in which he tried to listen to and respond to some of their demands.
I'm Ben Wedeman, CNN -- reporting from Paris.
VAUSE: The British Defense Secretary has been sacked over a leak of a confidential government decision. Downing Street says Gavin Williamson told the "Daily Telegraph" China's tech giant Huawei had been approved to provide some equipment for the country's 5G network but he denies being the source.
Details now from CNN's Nina Dos Santos reporting from London.
NINA DOS SANTOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT (on camera): The British Prime Minister Theresa May unceremoniously sacked her secretary of State and Defense Gavin Williamson, accusing him or somebody inside his department of having been behind the recent leaking of a sensitive government decision to allow the controversial telecoms giant of China, Huawei, to become involved in the building of the country's superfast 5G network.
That was something that dominated the agenda at a cyber security conference which was supposed to be the first time that we saw intelligence heads of the so-called Five Eyes alliance meet publicly on stage for the first time in the United Kingdom.
So this leak was timed to cause maximum embarrassment. Within the hour of the Prime Minister issuing her letter during which she admonished Gavin Williamson saying that his conduct during the subsequent inquiry into the leak had not been to the same standard as others. She also said that there was no other credible version of events to explain this leak, that had been identified thus far.
Gavin Williamson then issued, via Twitter, his own letter addressed to the British Prime Minister denying strenuously that he or anyone within his department was behind this leak. He also said, "I'm confident that a thorough and formal inquiry would have vindicated my position."
[01:35:00] He went on to say, he felt he had no option but to allow himself to be sacked, because a resignation on his part could have been viewed as an admission of guilt.
Now, whether or not Huawei is a suitable partner for 5G network building is a big hot topic of debate among Five Eyes allies. The United States has repeatedly said it does not feel comfortable with Huawei being part of its 5G network and has encouraged other Five Eyes allies to take the same position.
Australia has already banned Huawei from building it's 5G networks. So the U.K.'s decision to involve Huawei does somewhat stand at odds with other Five Eyes allies. But one of the things that the Five Eyes allies will also be concerned about is whether or not, when they share intelligence, it will be safe.
The members of this particular national security council meeting that were present in the room, one of whom will have leaked this information, will have signed the Official Secrets Act of the U.K. which criminalizes the dissemination of state sensitive information. And that means whoever was behind this inquiry, whether they denied or not, could be subject to not just being sacked but a criminal probe as well.
Nina Dos Santos, CNN -- London.
VAUSE: An environmental and climate emergency has been declared by lawmakers in the U.K. It comes after protests by the climate action group Extinction Rebellion (INAUDIBLE) London's landmarks. A climate change report recommends Britain aim for net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 and phase out certain cars including those fueled by diesel over the next 20 years. According to the report, the consumption of beef and lamb may need to be reduced as well.
A ruling by the institution known as the Sports Supreme Court is threatening to upend the career of a world class runner. At issue is the gender identity of a double Olympic champion. As CNN's Eleni Giokos reports, the 28-year-old South African has been given only one controversial option if she wants to compete in her preferred women's event.
ELENI GIOKOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: A gold medalist returned home to a hero's welcome. Three years later, for Caster Semenya to compete against women internationally, she must take hormone therapy to reduce testosterone levels, a ruling upheld by the court of arbitration for sport. The 28-year-old South African is hyperandrogenous meaning she has elevated levels of testosterone which increases strength and stamina.
But she remains beloved in her South African home.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I have been going around with what's going on with Caster Semenya is fair. I think they're just intimidated.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She didn't ask to be born with such, you know, high testosterone levels. It came with her, so they should allow her.
GIOKOS: Most here will tell you there is no controversy surrounding Caster Semenya. They say a ruling by sports governing body over her body is wrong, as it is unnecessary.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I don't think it's fair. She was born that way. When we start tampering with genetics, and how someone is born, we are now crossing a line that seems unethical to cross.
GIOKOS: Semenya has 30 days to appeal. Her team released a statement. "Caster Semenya is pleased that a unanimous CAS panel of three arbitrators confirmed that the IAAF's DSD Regulations are in fact discriminatory against certain women." The team statement goes on to quote Semenya who said, "I know that the IAAF's regulations have always targeted me specifically. For a decade, the IAAF has tried to slow me down, but this has actually made me stronger.
Semenya's biggest statement have always been to be on the track. Even when she's hurt, she is seldom in the public eye. At a rare event in Soweto last year, Semenya agreed to wear a microphone.
CASTER SEMENYA, OLYMPIC ATHLETE: I don't care about what people say about me. You understand. People love to question me, you know, for who I am. Those things are always there. It's part of life.
GIOKOS: Giving wisdom to an aspiring young athlete knowing her message could go to a much bigger audience.
SEMENYA: The situation do not define you, do not make you. It's just a temporary feeling that you can, you know, overcome.
GIOKOS: Eleni Giokos, CNN -- Johannesburg.
VAUSE: Next up here on CNN NEWSROOM an Instagram story of the Holocaust. How the creators of a controversial project want to make a new generation remember the past.
[01:39:35] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
VAUSE: India bracing for the strongest tropical cyclone in almost five years. Cyclone Fani is in the Bay of Bengal and has gained significant strength over the past few days. And will approach the East Coast in the coming hours.
And keeping a track on all of this Pedram Javaheri with more. So where is it, and how long have they got?
PEDRAM JAVAHERI, CNN METEOROLOGIST: John -- in about 24 hours or so, the storm's at about 250 kilometers off the East Coast of Andhra Pradesh, and the concern with this is the water temperatures are absolutely bath (ph) like, we are talking 30 degrees Celsius. 28 is what is necessary to maintain an intense storm, so well above that threshold. And at 205 kilometers per hour, not only is this the strongest storm in 2019 across the Indian Ocean but it is a strong category three equivalent system across this region.
And really keep in mind here when we look at storms of this magnitude, very rare to see them this early into the season especially of this magnitude and this far to the north. In fact, Fani comes in for the first time since 11 years for early May storm to develop.
And that one was cyclone Nargis (ph) if you recall, one of the deadliest storms of all time. Took with it over 130,000 lives, impacted of course Myanmar in this case but that was a devastating systems.
This particular system very strong as well working its way towards a very densely-populated region but some differences with this particular seasonal (ph) breakdown for you right here because as it approaches the coastal communities, you notice the population density increases tremendously as you work your way towards the north.
Water temperatures to the north, certainly not as warm as they are down here across the south, so the systems will want to weaken. That's one element of good news.
But, folks across this region taking this very seriously. In fact, the governments there of Andhra Pradesh and also Odisha have issued a red warning, which is the highest level of concern for warnings across this region.
And with that said, we expect high seas. In fact, at this hour, we have maximum wave heights at 34 feet across this region in advance of the storm system. Extreme rainfall also going to be a concern as the storm approaches the coastal area.
We think, within the next 24 to say 26 hours so around lunchtime on Friday local time, into eastern Odisha there that's going to be the area for landfall at a Category two or maybe a Category three equivalent. So, potentially losing a little bit of steam from where it stands at this hour.
And as John mentioned, as we began this segment, the last storm of this magnitude was back in 2014. It was Cyclone Hudhud that impacted the area around Visakhapatnam and you notice the rainfall amounts, John, is going staggering but especially as you work away farther inland towards the mountainous terrains.
So a story we'll follow for certainly a few days here.
VAUSE: Pedram -- thank you. Something obviously to keep a close eye on. JAVAHERI: Absolutely.
VAUSE: Well, the main message from Israel's Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial is "never forget". Never forget the horrors of six million Jews being slaughtered on an industrial scale.
But in these days of social media with many struggling with short attention spans, one father and daughter team in Israel are using modern technology to help a new generation remember the horrors of the past.
[01:45:02] Here's CNN's Oren Liebermann.
OREN LIEBERMANN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice over): More than 70 years after the Holocaust, there are a dwindling few survivors to pass on their memories. Their stories commemorated in documentaries and museums amidst a fear their lessons are fading.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Hi, my name is Eva. That's me.
LIEBERMANN: Eva Heyman (ph) is the new face of those lessons. The 13-year-old Hungarian Jew kept a diary the last months before she was deported to Auschwitz in May 1944, where she would die.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We are surrounded by war, but I'm always seeing the sun.
LIEBERMANN: Her story was all but forgotten, until Instagram brought it back to life.
MATI KOVACHI, CREATOR, "EVA'S STORY": We were looking for a way to deal with this memory, imagine this memory in a way that's going to be relevant for younger generation today.
LIEBERMANN: Eva's diary was reimagined on social media. On March 31st, 1944 she wrote, "Today an order was issued that from now on Jews have to wear a yellow star-shaped patch. The order tells exactly how big the star patch must be, and that it must be sewn on every outer garment, jacket or coat. When grandma heard this, she started acting up again and we called the doctor."
The idea to bring the diary to life on Instagram was the brain child of Mati and Maya Kochavi -- who wanted the Holocaust to reach a younger generation.
KOCHAVI: The diary in the journal is very short. It starts on February 12th when it's her birthday. On March, the Germans invade into Hungary. In May 30th, she is already on the train to Auschwitz. So it's a journal -- it's a journal of 108 days -- that's all.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I don't think we will see sweet mother for some time.
LIEBERMANN: "Eva's Story" was released on the eve of Holocaust Memorial Day in Israel. By that time, it had hundreds of thousands of followers.
(on camera): Not everyone has been thrilled with the Instagram story. Advertised on billboards like this here behind me all around Tel Aviv, critics have said it dumbs down the Holocaust and is a PR campaign in bad taste. Others have said it's a very short distance from a social media campaign like this to selfies at Auschwitz.
(voice over): That was never the intent behind Eva Heyman's story, of course.
MAYA KOCHAVI, "EVA'S STORY" CREATOR: Social media, especially Instagram is shallow if you are looking for content that is shallow. And if you're looking for content that is powerful and has magnitude and can cause revolutions even, you will very easily find it there.
LIEBERMANN: In her final diary entry written three days before she was deported from Hungary, she wrote, "Dear Diary, I don't want to die. I want to live, even if it means that I will be the only person here allowed to stay. I would wait for the end of the war in some cellar, just as long as they didn't kill me. Only that they should let me live."
This was a way of humanizing the Holocaust for a modern audience, making it more relevant to millennials. It's the same message of "never again", it's creators insist, just reimagined for a new generation to learn.
Oren Liebermann, CNN -- Jerusalem.
VAUSE: Next up here ON CNN NEWSROOM -- Facebook wants to know who's you're secret crush. And with the new feature they want to help love bloom. Really -- trust those guys with that secret? It's creepy.
VAUSE: It seems the main message from Facebook's founder this week at the companies annual conference was pretty direct -- trust me, I'm Mark Zuckerberg. You know, this guy.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
[01:49:55] MARK ZUCKERBERG, CEO, FACEBOOK: It's clear now that we didn't do enough to prevent these tools from being used for harm as well.
And that goes for fake news, to foreign interference in elections and hate speech, as well as developers in data privacy. We didn't take a broad enough view of our responsibility, and that was a big mistake.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Facebook has detailed profiles on people who have never signed up for Facebook, yes or no?
ZUCKERBERG: Congressman, in general, we collect data on people who have not signed up for Facebook for security purposes. This was a major breach of trust. And I'm really sorry that this
You know, we have a basic responsibility to protect peoples data, and if we can't do that then we don't deserve to have the opportunity to serve people.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAUSE: Yes. That Mark Zuckerberg, founder of Facebook, the social media platform which in recent years has repeatedly breached the privacy and trust of billions of users, revealed their innermost secrets and profited from the sale of their private data.
The same Mark Zuckerberg who is now offering Facebook users a new feature called "secret crush" which allow users to explore a possible romantic relationship with an online group of Facebook friends. It's a bit like high school, Facebook will pass the equivalent of a love note during gym class from admirer to admired without revealing who's who, until both confirm attraction.
The headline line on the Web site Gizmodo probably explained it lot better than that. Facebook wants to know which friends you want to -- get to know better.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ZUCKERBERG: Now look, I get that a lot of people aren't sure that we are serious about this. I know that we don't exactly have the strongest reputation on privacy right now, to put it lightly. But I'm committed to doing this well.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAUSE: Josh Constine is editor at large for TechCrunch. He joins us now from San Francisco. Josh -- good to see you. Thank you for being with us.
I will never use this. I don't use Facebook, so explain how all of it IS meant to work. Because I think I did a bad job of it.
JOSH CONSTINE, EDITOR AT LARGE, TECHCRUNCH: This is the successor to the Facebook (INAUDIBLE). If you're in one of the countries with Facebook dating, you will be able to choose up to nine people that are your friends who you want to express a secret crush on, and if they sign up for Facebook dating and adds you as a crush, as well, it will notify you both and you can start to chant over messenger to hopefully meet up and actually have a real date.
VAUSE: Ok. It sounds a lot like the early days of Facebook, and we have some archival footage up. It's the movie, "The Social Network". Here's a scene where the young Zuckerberg is in that Harvard dorm room. And Facebook was a hot or not Web site for fellow students. Here we go.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Are you all right?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I need you.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm here for you.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, I need the algorithm used during chess players.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Are you ok?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Were ranking girls.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You mean those students?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You think this is such a good idea?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAUSE: The Web site originally was called Face Mask, almost got him expelled from Harvard. It was creepy back then, and it's creepy now.
CONSTINE: The problem with this feature is that it's trying to come by Tinder with an app where you're parents are and that's just going to create fundamental awkwardness. And so, while Facebook wants to be more than just a news feed, just a profile and it's trying to find new revenue streams and ways to be meaningful in people's lives, I think this is going to backfire in a lot of ways.
Because the whole reason Facebook originally made dating inaccessible to friends was so that you would never run into somebody in real and they go, hey. I liked you on Facebook, like "liked you like you".
VAUSE: Ok. Well, you mentioned this is only available where Facebook dating is available and it's limited right now to 19 20 countries, less than 20 countries. Some of those countries have some pretty oppressive laws when it comes to who you can date and who you cannot date. In fact, we have this right there from the "New York Magazine" which put it this way. "Don't tell Facebook whom you want to have sex with. Don't tell them whom you want to date. This feature is available in places like Malaysia, where anti-sodomy laws have been in place for decades and punishment can include up to 20 years imprisonment and whippings, which is the same place where you really don't want to play fast and loose with your personal data."
So again, this gets us to this overall question that we keep having with Facebook. Can you trust them to keep your information secure? How long will it be before, you know, the government in Malaysia, or wherever else says hey, we want all that information. And they just hand it over.
CONSTINE: You know, Facebook needs to make this feature encrypted. It has to ensure that even if it gets breached, even if the rest of its data is stolen it will never reveal the people you like in a romantic way, that is.
But I would make sure that if you are someone using this app and you are in a country which does not allow homosexual relationships, I wouldn't necessarily express somebody for the same -- express interest in someone of the same gender for you because Facebook has just had too many privacy breaches over the years.
[01:55:02] And while it wants to tell you that the future is private, that doesn't mean it's actually going to do anything to actually bring about privacy. It's just trying to avoid regulation.
VAUSE: Yes. Here are a some of the headlines from the past few days reacting to this news. "New York Post": "Facebook's new secret crush isn't acute -- it's creepy." I agree with that.
The "Daily Mail" had this -- "Secret Cruz is a disaster waiting to happen", which is pretty much to your point, at least in some parts.
Overall the response to secret crush are not just from the headlines writers. Also on social media though -- it's pretty negative. I mean no one seems to be buying into this.
CONSTINE: It does just feel like it fundamentally breaks, what we know of as the separation of church and state. Or, the separation of dating and social networking. Those are two things that, it's just too problematic to bring them together. And even though Facebook wants to be everything, it can't, in this case.
And Mark Zuckerberg has just consistently misunderstood how public perception really works. Something that might seem fun or easy going to him could really feel invasive to its users. And so, Facebook needs to rethink whether secret crush is really the way it wants dating to go, or if it should stay in that privacy safe world of only matching up potential strangers.
VAUSE: The funny thing about this is that they are not going to monetizing it. And they have made the promise that, you know, all the data or anything else will not be sold off. And it will be quarantined and it would be safe.
So if they're not making money from it, everyone hates it, why do it?
CONSTINE: Facebook has become this pariah in the public eye. After so many years of scandals and breaches, it is trying to find a way to show that it really matters in your life. That even if you don't like browsing content from friends you never actually talk to that aren't even your friends, that there's a reason it deserves to be in your life.
But for it to deserve that place it has to earn it and it hasn't. Every time it's had an opportunity to build new privacy features, instead, it's built growth features that just expand its user base past the two plus billion people that are already on here.
And so, I think we need Facebook to double down on its core use cases and protect those and instead of building new doors that hackers can used to get into it service. Lock down the windows it already has.
VAUSE: Get back to its core function which is to share photographs of what you're eating. Josh -- thank you. I appreciate it.
And thank you for watching CNN NEWSROOM. I'm John Vause. The news continues on CNN right after this.
[01:57:34] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)