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HALA GORANI TONIGHT
Trump Encourages Israel To Ban Two U.S. Lawmakers; Labour Seeks No Confidence Vote In Boris Johnson's Govt.; Six Police Officers Wounded In Philadelphia Shootout; Gibraltar Releases Grace 1 Ship; Israel Bans American Congresswomen; Hong Kong Announces Stimulus Package. Aired 2-3p ET
Aired August 15, 2019 - 14:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[14:00:20] BIANCA NOBILO, CNN HOST, HALA GORANI TONIGHT: Hello, everyone. Live from CNN London, I'm Bianca Nobilo, in for Hala Gorani.
And tonight, an Iranian tanker seized in Gibraltar at the height of tensions is now free to go. We'll tell you why the U.S. won't be happy
Then, Israel changes the travel plans of two U.S. congresswomen, now barred from visiting the country.
And later, police engage in a dramatic standoff with a heavily armed suspect. We'll tell you how it ended, in the latest flashpoint in
America's guns crisis.
We start with Gibraltar's decision to free a seized Iranian tanker, a ruling made just hours after the United States filed a request to seize the
tanker itself. The decision by Gibraltar's supreme court means the Grace 1 is now free to leave. But there is still no word on what action, if any,
will be taken on the U.S. request, which would appear moot once the tanker sets sail.
Senior international correspondent Nick Paton Walsh is tracking developments for here -- for us here in London. And our military and
diplomatic analyst, retired U.S. Navy Admiral John Kirby, is in Washington.
Nick, let's start with you. You've been following this closely from the very beginning. As I mentioned in the introduction, Gibraltar have said,
essentially, that this tanker is free to leave. But then the U.S. have lodged this last-minute plea. The Gibraltar court said that they don't
currently have a request in their hands from the U.S. Is this tanker actually able and free to leave?
NICK PATON WALSH, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORREPSONDENT: According to Gibraltan politicians, it is able to leave. They have resolved the issue
of the E.U. sanctions violation they originally detained it under, and been given assurances -- according to the paperwork that they've released --
from the Iranian government, that it isn't about to go to the Baniyas oil terminal on the Syrian coast, which would be in violation of E.U. sanctions
against the Bashar al-Assad regime.
Now, what we don't really understand here -- and nobody seems to be able to provide a particularly convincing explanation -- is exactly what the
process now is for this newer U.S. (ph) allegation from the U.S. Department of Justice. They were lodged in something of a hurry this morning, there
was a whole afternoon, it appears, where they seem to have been in the hands of Gibraltan officials.
Yet at the same time, the British request to hold the Grace 1 tanker was being resolved. So you can possibly argue there's a bit of a race against
time, maybe, for the tanker to perhaps set sail if, possibly, the Gibraltan court considers this to be a valid set of allegations. I don't know how
that would work in terms of E.U. law, if it docked at another E.U. port.
TEXT: Gibraltar: Iranian tanker seized, July 4, Grace 1. Strait of Hormuz: British tanker seized, July 19, Stena Impero.
PATON WALSH: But we're in this bizarre position here, where the United States has sort of turned a day of what should have been, really, de-
escalation between the U.K. and Iran, where potentially even the Stena Impero, a British-owned tanker that's being held by the Iranians, could
have been released, maybe reciprocally -- no sign of that just yet -- into a day of confusion and tension again.
NOBILO: That was going to be my next question to you as well. Given the fact that on the surface at least, you could infer that this would lead to
a de-escalation of tensions, but you just outlined why it's much complicated than that. If Iran and the U.S. wanted ladders (ph) to climb
down here, how might they proceed now?
PATON WALSH: Hard to tell. I mean, possibly. The Gibraltan courts may look at the U.S. allegations, of which we know nothing. I mean, why these
things are being kept to the very last minute when it was about to be released, is unclear. They had (ph) great substance and sensitive, and
therefore they (ph) were (ph) not (ph) willing (ph) to release them until they had to, or are they just a last-ditch attempt to pile on the pressure.
Remember, Washington has, for the last months -- for the last years, almost -- since it pulled out of the nuclear deal, been trying to put what it
calls "maximum pressure" on Iran. And that even includes putting maximum pressure on its own allies, in terms of their dealings with Iran. Perhaps
they view the U.K. as the more potentially vulnerable to U.S. pressure. The U.K. said it wants the deal to stay alive, so does France and Germany,
other signatories to it.
But what the U.K. needs now, obviously, is a deal with the U.S. after Brexit, if that all starts to fall apart. So they perhaps perceive they
can pressure the United Kingdom, they're pressuring Iran through military presence in the gulf, through sanctions, through pulling out of the nuclear
Quite what today does, is still unclear. The tanker may set sail, the British may be out of this, they may get their tanker released, possibly,
by Tehran. That always (ph) seemed to eventually be the deal, that everyone would calm down and they'd come to some kind of resolution to all
But still, at this very last minute, the U.S. Department of Justice, kind of ramming a wrench that (ph) would say (ph) into the works here.
NOBILO: Thanks, Nick.
And let's turn to that, now, the issue of how the U.S. will be receiving this. John Kirby, I'm keen to get your thoughts on whether or not the U.S.
here will see this as strategically difficult for them. It's certainly not advantageous.
JOHN KIRBY, CNN MILITARY AND DIPLOMATIC ANALYST: It's not going to be advantageous to our relationship with the British, and to help them get
their tanker back. But I think to Nick's point, this is very much in keeping with President Trump's desire to put maximum pressure -- maximum
economic pressure -- on Iran, and this is very much in keeping with that strategy, the strategy that they've been pursuing, now, for more than a
[14:05:04] Now, it is unclear why they've done this. We did have a senior administration official tell our Kylie Atwood, not long ago, that they
think the Brits could use the fact that this ship and-or its cargo are owned by the IRGC, as yet another hook to detain it. What -- I don't know
if that's the argument that they're making in this case, but it could be -- it could be that that's part of this filing.
The other thing that's a little bit curious here, is the clock. Again, as Nick mentioned, as I understand it, the crew of this tanker has been
released. So right now, there's no crew aboard, at least that's what we think, which would mean it's going to be delayed a little bit until
somebody can get on board to actually get it moving.
NOBILO: Yes. That adds to the list of complexities that Nick was just outlining for us.
And, John, how aligned are the United States -- is the United States and the United Kingdom on this issue? John Bolton was obviously just in London
for a meeting with the --
NOBILO: -- new prime minister, Boris Johnson, as well as some other key figures in the new government. Do you feel like they are singing from the
same hymn sheet here?
KIRBY: To a degree, Bianca. I mean, the Brits have now agreed to come on board with an international coalition led by the United States, to develop
maritime security initiatives in the Strait of Hormuz, to monitor the Iranian naval activity there.
They obviously have a similar interest to the United States, in the free flow of oil through the strait and in and out of the Persian Gulf. But
Boris Johnson was not in favor of the United States pulling out of the Iran deal, he made no bones -- no secret about the fact that he disagreed with
that, that he still wants to keep the deal alive.
He also has trade issues he wants to work out with the U.S., as they manage through Brexit. But he has not exactly been on the same page with the
Trump administration with respect to all the maximum pressure, politically and economically, that the United States wants to put on Iran. So it does
put the Brits in a very difficult position here. It's going to be very interesting to see how they treat this latest filing.
NOBILO: Thanks, John.
John Kirby, there, for us in Washington.
KIRBY: You bet.
NOBILO: Now, banned for their beliefs: Today, Israel decided to take an extraordinary step against two lawmakers from the United States, its
strongest ally, and prevent them from visiting the country. Democrats Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib are both fierce critics of Israel and its
treatment of Palestinians, and support a controversial boycott movement known as BDS.
Their planned trip included meetings with Israeli and Palestinian peace activists. But Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says their sole intention
was to, quote, "harm Israel." Just moments ago, Omar called the decision "an affront," but said that she was not surprised by it.
The remarkable thing is, the America First president, Donald Trump, wanted Israel to ban the congresswomen, and he's making sure that the world knows
it. Let's bring in Oren Liebermann in Jerusalem, and Sarah Westwood in New Jersey, where Mr. Trump is on holiday.
Oren, let's start with you. Explain the lead-up to this decision, and the details of it.
OREN LIEBERMANN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, we knew that Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar were supposed to arrive this weekend for a
short trip, about a half a week, where they intended to meet, according to organizers of the trip, with peace activists, civil service organizations
as well as a few other human rights organizations.
And that trip, as of at least last month, was supposed to go ahead from the Israeli government. It was, in fact, the Israeli ambassador to the
U.S., Ron Dermer, who is considered one of those closest to Netanyahu -- Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, that is -- who had said that because of
Israel's respect for the U.S. Congress, this trip would be allowed to continue.
And that appeared to be the case, up until this afternoon, or perhaps this morning, I should say. At that point, an Israeli government --
SARAH WESTWOOD, CNN WHITE HOUSE REPORTER (?): No, I don't know what that is.
LIEBERMANN: -- official said they were considering not allowing them in because of -- what was that, Bianca?
WESTWOOD: OK. I'm reading about it now.
NOBILO: Please continue. We'll come back -- we'll come back to them in a second.
I think we may have lost Oren, so I'm going to go to Sarah Westwood, if we have her.
Sarah, are you with us in New Jersey?
WESTWOOD: Yes, I am. Thanks.
NOBILO: So, Sarah, the president's weighed into this issue, to put it mildly. Talk us through what he's said about this potential visit, now
banned visit, to Israel by these two congresswomen.
WESTWOOD: Well, Bianca, we saw sort of a disconnect between the president's White House and what President Trump ended up saying on
Twitter. At first, you had the White House via Press Secretary Stephanie Grisham, saying that this was Israel's decision to make. And then
President Trump, weighing in on Twitter this morning, saying that it would be a sign of weakness if Israel were to allow these two congresswomen to
Now, keep in mind, that this is a decision, as we were just hearing from Oren, that Israel might have made anyway. But President Trump inserting
himself, appearing to lend his backing to this controversial decision from the Israeli government, obviously has brought himself and his White House
into the discussion about the decision to ban Congresswomen Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar from visiting Israel.
[14:10:03] Now, there has been a backlash among Democratic colleagues of these two women, with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi saying that this is -- not
allowing them into Israel is a sign of weakness, that's something that was echoed by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer.
And just moments ago, Congresswoman Omar responded to the news that she had been denied entry from visiting Israel by saying this was an affront, that
this would have a chilling effect on government officials who want to visit Israel.
So President Trump, wading into this perhaps unnecessarily and causing a lot of people to continue talking about the controversial and sometimes
just plain racist attacks that he's had on these two congresswomen in the past -- Bianca.
NOBILO: Thanks, Sarah.
Oren, back to you. What do you think this tells us about the relationship overall between President Trump and Benjamin Netanyahu? Is Netanyahu
essentially helping President Trump out here, and doing his job for him? Because we know -- and you both outlined -- what the president thinks about
these two congresswomen and what they reflect about America.
LIEBERMANN: Well, President Donald Trump's tweet, saying Israel would show great weakness by letting them in, left Israel very little wiggle room
here. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has never publicly disagreed with Trump and he wasn't about to start now.
So in a sense, Trump really may have forced Netanyahu's hand on this one, Netanyahu then coming out with an explanation quite a bit later, saying
that it was obvious from the itinerary of their trip, that they were just here to damage the interests of the state of Israel and delegitimize Israel
using, as an example, that the destination of the journey, according to their itinerary, was Palestine and not Israel.
It's also clear, here, that Trump wins for his own domestic politics because of this. It will certainly go right -- go well with his base.
What's less clear is what happens to Netanyahu, who faces a tough re- election campaign. This may score him some points with a right-wing voter base, but he also knows it may very well damage the relationship between
Israel and the United States.
As for Congresswoman Omar's response, let me read you a little bit more of that, and how she weighed in on this. Her statement, coming just a short
time ago, saying, "It's an affront that Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu, under pressure from President Trump, would deny entry to representatives of
the U.S. government.
"Trump's Muslim ban is what Israel is implementing, this time, against two duly elected members of Congress. The irony of the only democracy in the
Middle East making such a decision, is that it is both an insult to democratic values and a chilling response to a visit by government
officials from an allied nation." A stinging response from Omar.
It's also worth point out, Bianca, that AIPAC, the pro-Israel-American lobby, which has generally been pro-Trump and pro-Netanyahu, criticized the
decision, saying these two congresswomen might be anti-Israel and pro-the boycott movement, but they should have still been allowed in so they could
learn and look around for themselves.
NOBILO: Oren Liebermann in Jerusalem, thank you.
Now, Hong Kong is unveiling a stimulus package after weeks of massive protests disrupting business, forcing the cancellation of flights and
scaring investors. The government has announced it will pump more than $2 billion into its slowing economy.
The protests may have started over democracy, but some of the unrest is also fueled by Hong Kong's huge gap between the rich and the poor. Ben
Wedeman has this story for us.
BEN WEDEMAN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: If you're rich in Hong Kong, you're rich -- the lucky few. If not, you might live in Sham
Shui Po, a crowded working-class Kowloon neighborhood, a hotbed of unrest in this summer of discontent.
AN NAMH, PROTESTOR (PH): Yes, it's terrible.
WEDEMAN (voice-over): Twenty-six-year-old An (ph) Namh (ph) has all the gear necessary for the next protest. He's rarely missed one.
A courier for a law firm, he makes almost $1,300 a month. Of that, $740 go for rent on this miniscule apartment, which he shares with his cat, Taikwon
An (ph) Namh's (ph) grievances go well beyond the now-suspended extradition bill. For An (ph) Namh (ph) and others, it's about leaders who cater to
the powerful and ignore the rest. "The government," he says, "should take from the rich and give to the poor so they can live in Hong Kong."
He labors under no illusions. He believes he will never own the roof over his head. And for that, again, he blames the government.
"They've increased the gap between rich and poor," he tells me. They've taken away the chance for young people to improve their lives and buy an
apartment. Yet An (ph) Namh's (ph) apartment is sprawling compared to some nearby.
WEDEMAN: Hong Kong is one of the world's most densely populated cities, and living space is in desperately short supply. This gentleman, for
instance, pays 3,000 Hong Kong dollars a month -- that's about $382 U.S. -- for this.
[14:15:05] WEDEMAN (voice-over): Hong Kong has, by far, the world's least affordable housing. The easiest way to get decent housing, says Sham Shui
Po community organizer Gordon Chick, is to be born into it.
GORDON CHICK, COMMUNITY ORGANIZER, SOCIETY FOR COMMUNITY ORGANIZATION: Depends on your parents, rich or no. If they are rich, they can give you
the money to buy. If not, sorry.
WEDEMAN (voice-over): "Sorry" may not be enough. Ben Wedeman, CNN, Hong Kong.
NOBILO: Worries over the Hong Kong protests and the U.S.-China trade war are just some of the factors impacting the markets. Let's take a quick
look at what's behind the Dow's violent swings this week.
On Monday, the Dow plunged nearly 400 points as trade war fears intensified. And the Hong Kong protests spooked investors around the
globe. Those losses were almost regained on Tuesday, as President Donald Trump's delay on some tariffs on some Chinese goods, buoyed the market. On
Wednesday, alarm bells were ringing on new recession fears that led to the Dow's biggest loss this year, some 800 points.
For more on what's fueling these market jitters, let's bring in Mark Zandi. He's the chief economist at Moddy's Analytics, a provider of economic
research and data.
Great to have you with us, Mark. This week overall, how would you characterize it? Because it has -- it's been a week of swings, back and
forth. Overall, what is the trend here? What are we seeing?
MARK ZANDI, CHIEF ECONOMIST, MOODY'S ANALYTICS: Down, not very good. I think investors -- both stock investors and bond investors -- are very
nervous about the prospects for the U.S. economy and the global economy, and it all goes back to President Trump's trade war.
So I think people are now coming to the realization that this war is doing significant economic damage across the globe, and it's got them worried
NOBILO: Mark, Donald Trump tweeted an hour or two ago, this: "The fake news media is doing everything they can to crash the economy because they
think that will be bad for me and for my re-election. The problem they have is that the economy is way too strong, and we will soon be winning on
trade. And everyone knows that, including China.
So my question to you is, does the president have a point? Do you think there's any element of the media or others jumping the gun on this and
talking about recession before it's due?
ZANDI: No. It's not the media, it's investors, it's the global financial markets, it's the millions and millions of people who are putting their own
money on the line, telling in a very clear, concise, strong way, "Look, this is a problem."
I mean, why else would you sell stocks? Why else would you buy long-term bonds, Treasury bonds, the safest asset on the planet? Because you're
scared, you're nervous. So people are voting, and these are people with money that put their money to work. And they're saying, "This isn't
working for me, Mr. President. You need to find a way to end this trade war," otherwise we're going to have a recession.
NOBILO: What are the main drivers, to your mind, behind these jitters? We've spoken about Hong Kong, we've talked a little bit about the U.S.-
China trade war. What else is there happening around the world, that is driving the moves that we've seen this week in particular?
ZANDI: Well, I mean, obviously, it's a trade war. I mean, Hong Kong, also, is very serious. I mean, it has lots of implications for China, for
the rest of Asia. Let alone that Hong Kong is a major financial transportation hub in Asia. So that's a big deal.
And then, of course, there is Brexit. You know, Brexit is coming up again. The British have to make a decision about whether they're going to leave
the European Union on October 31st. And their new prime minister, Boris Johnson, is obviously beating the drums and making it sound like the
British may leave without a deal, which will obviously be very disruptive to the global economy.
And I think you can go on and on and on. You know, events in Argentina, Strait of Hormuz and Iran, you know, Pakistan and India. I mean, these
kinds of events may -- you know, in a more normal time, when things were going straight, would not be a big deal. But this time, when the economy -
- the global economy is on a razor's edge, these are the kinds of things that actually push the economy over the edge, into recession.
NOBILO: Mark Zandi, thanks for joining us.
Still to come on the program tonight, new details in the death of a multi- millionaire accused of sex trafficking in the U.S. Find out what the autopsy results are saying about the final moments of Jeffrey Epstein.
[14:19:41] And Britain's Labour leader could soon make the fight over Brexit even more complicated. Find out what Jeremy Corbyn has planned.
NOBILO: New details have emerged about the death of a wealthy and well- connected U.S. hedge fund manager accused of running a sex trafficking ring. Jeffrey Epstein was found dead, Saturday, in his New York jail cell.
According to "The Washington Post," the autopsy results show he had several broken bones in his neck, including the bone near his Adam's apple.
So could this confirm that Epstein hanged himself? CNN chief medical correspondent Sanjay Gupta joins me with more.
Great to have you on the program. If you could talk us through these autopsy results, and explain what they mean and how much certainty they can
SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes. Well, you know, it's interesting because the final autopsy results still aren't back here.
You're getting little bits of information that sometimes, as you know, can paint an incomplete picture.
But what they have said, in terms from (ph) the "Washington Post" reporting, that there were a few different bones that they saw were broken
in Mr. Epstein. One is the Hyoid Bone, and that's a bone that you can feel, anyone can feel on themselves. It's just sort of underneath their
jaw, they feel that hard bone there.
That's a bone that, especially in people who -- as they get older, can be fairly easily broken. It becomes quite brittle, and it can become -- it
can break with someone who undergoes strangulation, or someone who has been hanged as well. So either one of those situations, as hard as this is to
talk about, can actually cause a fracture of that bone.
With Mr. Epstein, what they also said, in that "Washington Post" reporting, is that he had other bones broken in his neck. Talking (ph) about the
cervical spine here.
And I think, to your question, Bianca, I think that more strongly suggests something like hanging. Strangulation alone typically doesn't cause other
fractures in the spine like that.
So you'd have to look at things like hanging and you'd have to look at other possible factors, were there any defensive or any signs of a
struggle. Again, we just don't have that information. So any good pathologist would basically say, "Incomplete picture. Can't draw
conclusions as of yet, but there's a few clues in here.
NOBILO: Dr. Sanjay Gupta, thank you for walking us through the information that we've got.
GUPTA: You got it. Thank you.
NOBILO: Here in the U.K., the rise in knife crime literally hit close to home for an agency whose job it is to stop it. Police say that one man was
stabbed outside the Home Office building in London, Thursday. Nina dos Santos has more from the scene.
NINA DOS SANTOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Just after lunchtime, here outside the Home Office, one of the most sensitive U.K. government buildings, police
say they were called to an incident, during which a 60-year-old man appeared to have been attacked with a knife blade, sustaining non-life-
Pictures from the scene showed him, apparently, with a bloodied face, and also blood across his torso. He appeared to have been helped by an
ambulance crew and police officers, and taken to a hospital.
The Metropolitan Police said in a statement that they had arrested a 29- year-old man in connection with this attack, in a square garden about two blocks away from here. That individual was arrested on suspicion of
grievous bodily harm and also was said to be carrying a canister of tear gas in a bag he had on his possession at the time.
[14:25:16] Police say that they're keeping an open mind as to the motive of this attack, but they do not believe it to be terrorist-related. Nina dos
Santos, CNN, in Westminster, London.
NOBILO: Still to come tonight, Britain's government could be in for even more of a rocky ride when Parliament returns from summer recess. Find out
what Labour's leaders have in store for the new prime minister.
Also ahead, a cornfield becomes a landing strip for a Russian jetliner after a bird strike in midair.
NOBILO: Welcome back. We return, now, to the firestorm of controversy over Israel's decision to ban two U.S. lawmakers from entering the country.
U.S. President Donald Trump encouraged Israel to block Democrats Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib, the first Muslim women elected to Congress.
Palestinians are furious, with one official calling it "a dangerous precedent," and "an assault on the Palestinian people's right to engage
with the rest of the world."
Congresswoman Omar is also now responding, saying that Israel's move is chilling, and an insult to democratic values.
Let's bring in CNN global affairs analyst Aaron David Miller to discuss this.
Aaron, I mentioned just now that the response from a Palestinian official, who said that -- who was just talking about how damaging this is, in the
way that international relations usually operate and how corrosive it could be for democratic exchanges. I mean, surely, soft diplomacy is all about
education and cultural exchange. How unusual a move is this?
AARON DAVID MILLER, CNN GLOBAL AFFAIRS ANALYST: You know, countries block the travel of individuals, whether they're immigrants or politicians, all
the time. I think -- and Ilhan Omar, in her recent statement, praising Israel as the only democratic polity in the Middle East, I think, made an
I think the Israeli polity, as I understand it and have understood it for decades, is in fact a resilient democracy, unlike ours, in many respect,
but vibrant, open to free debate. I mean, I know many Israelis who sound more Palestinian that Palestinians. So I think it was a mistake on the
part of the prime minister, to decide to ban both of these lawmakers. I think it undermines Israel's image as a democratic polity.
I think that had the visit going on, it would have taken place and faded away. Now, this is going to be a gift that keeps on giving to many people
who don't like the Israelis or the prime minister.
And finally, I think, and this is where the president and as an American, this is my real concern here. We've intervened in Israeli politics before.
I mean, I worked for half a dozen secretaries of state. I was involved in at least three cases where, in fact, American presidents directly
interceded to support their favorite prime minister.
But never in my experience, and I think never in the history of the U.S./Israeli relationship, have we seen a president who is so
preternaturally and willfully committed to intervention. Not only on behalf Mr. Netanyahu, and this is where the confluence becomes so dangerous
in my judgment, but to encourage the government of Israel publicly to block the admission of two city members of the House of Representatives. Their
political views are their political views. But both America and Israel can accommodate those views, it seems to me. And should in the interest of
free exchange and debate.
Donald Trump, whether or not, he remains a one-term president or goes on to be elected to a two-term president, given the history of the state of
Israel, is still only a speed bump. Congress and maintaining Israeli relations with both political parties, the U.S. Congress and nurturing the
bipartisanship that is so critically important to sustain this relationship, that's an enduring, strategic interest and value.
And I think today that took a hit.
BIANCA NOBILO, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Aaron, it's likely that this move on the president's part and the exchange between President Trump
and Benjamin Netanyahu will resonate well insofar as it does with President Trump's base. But you mentioned the fact that the mood in Israel may be
very different. Our correspondent is in Jerusalem earlier in the program also said this is likely to make things more difficult for Netanyahu
electorally. So, how do you think this is going to resonate with Israelis?
MILLER: You know, Bianca, it's funny. It's a fascinating question. And I don't think there's a human being on earth who could tell you right now
what the outcome of the September 17th elections in Israel are going to be. There's so much uncertainty. So many new moving parts.
I think I would say things that are -- I think two things that are kind of counterintuitive. Number one, Donald Trump is probably more popular in
Israel than anywhere else, any other country in the world.
And number two, I think that Israeli prime ministers, despite the fact they have an investment in placating and cooperating deeply with their key ally,
the United States, have always prided themselves in being to somewhat defiant and independent.
The sequence of events here, whether or not that's the way they actually played out in the internal decision making, has the president of the United
States basically accusing this Israeli prime minister being weak if he didn't bar the admission of these two. And then within several hours, the
decision is announced to bar them. I think this makes -- Mr. Netanyahu who is not a weak man and prides himself in his strength and resolve appear to
be an instrument and a derivative device, manipulated by the president of the United States for his own personal, political vendettas against these
So on one hand, it may satisfy his base. There'll be no visit, no hostile rhetoric against Israel. No criticism of the Israeli occupation. But on
the other hand, I don't think it puts the prime minister of the state of Israel in a very good light to have appeared to have complied with the
presidential directive via tweet.
NOBILO: Aaron, one of the things that strikes me as so remarkable about this is in a western liberal democracy for the leader of that country to --
and I'm oversimplifying here, essentially, choose an international relationship or international optics over defending their own lawmakers.
Usually, in countries like the United Kingdom or previously the United States, you try and keep your domestic squabbles within that sphere and not
elevate them on to the international sphere, or am I wrong?
MILLER: Well, no, I think in a normal -- look, if this were -- we're operated in a galaxy far, far away here these days, not on planet earth.
On planet earth, despite the imperfections of the previous administrations -- and you know, and I've worked for Republicans and democratic
administrations and voted for them, too.
[14:35:00] You have a president whose foreign policy is guided largely by political domestic concerns. And, by the way, every president takes
domestic politics into consideration, particularly in the middle east when they deal with our Middle East policy, but never has there been a
president, in my experience, who has so subsumed the American the national interest to his -- not just his political interest, but his own personality
sensibilities and, in some, respects his own vanity and ego.
So I think it's unnatural, Bianca, and I don't think it's the way to run the railroad, and I think, in large part, even though there have been a few
redemptive aspects of Mr. Trump's foreign policy, particularly his determination to get America out of unwinnable wars and try not to get them
into new ones, let's hope that's true with Iran, that he's operating from a script that we haven't seen before and it is one, in my judgment, that is
disadvantageous both to the United States and to the U.S./Israeli relationship.
NOBILO: Aaron David Miller, thank you.
MILLER: Thank you, Bianca.
NOBILO: Just in to CNN, sources say the White House is looking at invoking executive privilege to limit a former Trump aide from testifying before
Congress. You'll remember former Trump campaign manager, Cory Lewandowsky, the House Judiciary Committee subpoenaed him as well as other -- as well as
another White House official, as part of an investigation into the Trump presidency.
Lewandowski has only, informally, advised Trump since his work on the 2016 campaign ended. This would be the first time the president has tried to
invoke privilege for someone who has never worked in the administration.
NOBILO: British Prime Minister Boris Johnson could see his days in office numbered, as the opposition now plans to call for a no-confidence vote in
Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn is rallying support to stop Mr. Johnson from leading the country into what many fear could be a catastrophic no-deal
Brexit. There's no date set for Labour's challenge, and parliament is in recess, but Corbyn says his aim is to end the uncertainty and disarray and
to allow the public to decide the best way ahead.
As it stands now, the deadline for the U.K.'s divorce from the European Union is just 77 days away. That's deal or no-deal. But not only is
Brexit's future murky, some see a crisis in Britain's economy, its democracy and its constitutional order.
Isa Soares reports on the rough waters just ahead.
ISA SOARES, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): In theory, all Boris Johnson has to do is wait and let the clock tick down.
SOARES (on-camera): The 31st of October is enshrined in law as the day the U.K. leaves the European Union, deal or no-deal.
But in reality, there are a number of potential roadblocks opponents of no- deal may use to try and hold things up.
SOARES (voice-over): MP's return to this building in three weeks. One of their first actions could be to call a vote of no-confidence in the
government, something Johnson will likely lose, given his parliamentary majority is down to just one.
SOARES (on-camera): After that, well, this is when things get really murky, uncharted legal waters, and no one really knows how it will work.
What we do know is the prime minister will have 14 days to respond in which time the country could be swept along in four possible directions.
He could call an election, leaving the British people to decide which course to steer. Alternatively, the leader of the opposition, Jeremy
Corbyn, could be given a chance to actually captain the ship and try to form a government and he has already said he would call a second referendum
It's also possible a unity government could be formed led by someone other than Jeremy Corbyn but they could try and sink Brexit altogether.
And a fourth possibility if Johnson loses a no-confidence vote is he simply refuses to step down, and that means it could leave Britain adrift in a
constitutional crisis, and this is where the queen comes in.
The Labour Party's, John McDonnell, says that if Johnson refuses to step aside, he will put Corbyn in a taxi straight to Buckingham Palace.
SOARES (voice over): Where the queen is normally tucked away, trying to stay out of the politics. Some have said in this sort of constitutional
crisis, it would fall upon her to act.
SOARES (voice over): Back in Parliament, MPs have a couple of other things they could try to avoid a no-deal Brexit. They could force Prime Minister
Johnson back to Brussels to ask for an extension, although the E.U. has already refused to rework the deal. Or they could create a law to revoke
Article 50, the very law which began this Brexit process.
[14:40:00] SOARES (voice-over): All of this requires opposition and rival politicians to be very organized and coordinated, something they aren't
exactly known for around here. And if they fail to unite, no deal looks inevitable.
Isa Soares, CNN, London.
NOBILO: Joining me now for more on this still-unsettled strategy for Brexit is Alistair Burt. He's a conservative Member of Parliament and
former minister of state for international development and the foreign office. Thank you very much for joining us.
ALISTAIR BURT, CONSERVATIVE MEMBER OF PARLIAMENT: Pleasure. Thank you.
NOBILO: One of your colleagues today (INAUDIBLE) mentioned that he thought that the prospect of a no-deal Brexit was much worse than the prospect of a
Corbyn-led government. Where do you stand on that as a conservative MP?
BURT: I'm not so sure I would give that answer. And I ask some of my constituents recently who are in the farming business what they thought of
a no-deal or a Corbyn government and they were almost unanimous that they would rather not have a Corbyn government.
So I think you can ask different people. There are concerns about how long this caretaker arrangement would last. What it should do is give all sorts
of warning lights to my conservative colleagues and government to say we shouldn't even be entertaining this question. We must sort it out so that
this risk does not actually apply.
NOBILO: There has been chatter about so-called national unity government to avoid crashing out of the European Union without a deal for some time.
And interestingly, Jeremy Corbyn is often not mentioned as the person that might lead that national unity government. Now, he is wading in and taking
more of a leadership role. But what is it for our international viewers about Jeremy Corbyn that makes him an unpalatable leader for many that
would like to support a national unity government to avoid a no-deal Brexit but just don't want to support him.
BURT: I've never known an opposition leader in the United Kingdom have such a difficult time as Jeremy Corbyn to convince his own people as well
as the public. Jeremy Corbyn has real issues within his own party. His own MPs did not elect him as leader. He was elected by the outside party,
the Labour Party in the country. But most of his MPs did not vote for him.
They tried a vote of no-confidence to remove him, but they have no powers to remove him. So he has difficulties in his own party. He is beset by a
number of issues from his selection of candidates to razz anti-Semitism and the like. There are many issues about Jeremy Corbyn that make the Labour
Party cautious about him. Let alone those in other parties.
So he is in a quite different position as leader of the opposition than, say, Gordon Brown or Tony Blair would have been in their time.
NOBILO: Another problem that you can see on the horizon for any form of alternative government trying to avoid a no-deal, is that there are many
different members of parliament who would like to avoid a no-deal. But beyond that, they don't agree. So what then?
BURT: You're quite right. There is a unity of purpose. If the majority of members of parliament in my view against the no-deal. After that, some
would like to see the whole thing revoked. Some would like a second referendum and some, like me, who voted to stay in the European Union have
accepted the result and we are what I term reluctant but committed leavers.
And we're frustrated because I voted for the withdrawal agreement because he hated by the government with the E.U., but a number of my colleagues
didn't, including some who are now in the cabinet, even though they helped to bring down Theresa May's government. They are there.
I think if they want to see the United Kingdom leave, they're playing with fire. And what they ought to see from all these concerns that are out is
that they should be trying to do what Boris Johnson said in his campaign to get a deal. We know that Boris Johnson is committed to leaving no matter
what. And if that message hadn't been heard by Brussels, I think it had been, but it's very clear now.
What we're not hearing is the tactic and the technique to get an agreement where there is going to be compromise between the E.U. and the United
Kingdom to leave with a deal, which I still think most members of parliament believe is in the best interest of the U.K.
But if I was the government, I would be worried about the signals that are there at the moment, and I would be trying very hard to get a deal, not
trying to split the opponents of no-deal.
NOBILO: Last question to you. Realistically, what do you see is the life span of this government? How long can it last, and what are the most
critical life-threatening challenges to it?
BURT: I've been a member of parliament for 32 years, and I can't answer your question. I don't know is the short answer. I think it could have a
very short spell before it goes for an election. If the government simply cannot govern, it may have to ask for a general election.
If it succeeds in getting us out of the E.U. on the 31st of October with a deal, it will have dealt with the Brexit problem and it will be set fair
with the other things that the prime minister has announced. Whether it's crime, law and order, moving the country forward. It will be in a very
good position. It all hangs on Brexit. And if I was the government, I would look at the various risks of getting a deal with all the things that
might happen if they don't get a deal and if I were them, I'd really, really go for the deal. That's the best way of extending the life and the
success of the conservative government.
[14:45:08] NOBILO: Alistair Burt, thank you.
Still to come on the program tonight, another shooting in the United States. This time, police officers were the ones wounded by the gunfire.
How it all ended and the latest calls for gun control coming up next.
NOBILO: Welcome back. The police commissioner in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, says it was nothing short of a miracle that six officers shot
during a standoff escaped serious injury. The incident is yet another grim example of gun violence in America.
Athena jones has the details.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Keep your hands up.
ATHENA JONES, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): A tense standoff coming to an end in Philadelphia overnight.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Shots fired at police inside the property.
JONES: Six police officers were shot on Wednesday afternoon. It all started around 4:30 p.m. when officers tried to serve a drug warrant.
RICHARD ROSS, COMMISSIONER, PHILADELPHIA POLICE: They had already entered the premises and got towards the rear and kitchen area when gunfire
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It was like a hundred shots.
JONES: The gunman targeting police officers as more of them arrived at the scene.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Multiple gunshots. Shots still ringing out. Give me SWAT, ASAP. Long gun, ASAP.
ROSS: The shooter fired multiple rounds. Officers returned fire, many of whom who had to escape through windows and doors to get from a barrage of
JONES: Residents looking on as police swarmed the streets, some wearing tactical gear, trying to negotiate with the suspect. Watch police taking
cover after bullets ricochet off a building nearby onto the sidewalk. You can see an officer help another from the ground, taking cover from the
bullets behind a car. SWAT team and armored vehicles called in to help the area under siege, while two other officers who were serving the warrant
were trapped inside the home.
ROSS: SWAT was able to successfully extract the two police officers that were trapped upstairs as well as three prisoners.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I've got an officer shot in this location in the leg.
JONES: All of the officers who are shot were treated at local hospitals and released.
ROSS: They were struck throughout their body. One officer sustained a gunshot wound, a graze wound to his head. Thankfully that was all that
JONES: Authorities even had to evacuate children at two nearby daycare centers.
KENNY WILLIAMS, DAYCARE PARENT: We know that six officers got shot. It could have been one of the kids. A stray bullet could have went in there.
No telling what would have happened. It's a terrible situation.
JONES: Philadelphia's mayor expressing his frustration about gun violence.
JIM KENNEY (D), MAYOR OF PHILADELPHIA: Our officers need help. They need help. They need help with gun control. They need help with keeping these
weapons out of these people's hands. Our officers deserve to be protected and they don't deserve to be shot at by a guy for hours with an unlimited
supply of weapons and an unlimited supply of bullets.
[14:50:04] NOBILO: And Athena joins me now from Philadelphia. Athena, you've just heard from officials. What are they saying now?
JONES: Hi, Bianca. Well, a lot of them were echoing what you just heard from Philadelphia mayor, Jim Kenney, frustration, anger, visibly upset,
emotional, even, over the fact that this suspect was able to fire so many times and for such a long period of time and that he had a lot of weaponry
and ammunition. This mayor said no one should have this kind of ammunition.
We already heard from the district attorney who said looking at this suspect's very long rap sheet dating back to 2001. We're talking about
state charges, federal charges, everything from gun possession to drug possession, intent to sell drugs, a long list of charges. This person is
someone who should not have been out on the streets.
But at this press conference that's still going on right now, we heard the mayor reiterate the need for gun control. We heard from a U.S. senator,
Bob Casey, talking about the need for the U.S. Senate to act on measures sent to it by the House on background checks for instance.
We also heard folks from the Congress here, the legislature here in Pennsylvania talking about how they need to take steps on bills that are
already working their way through the general assembly.
So a lot of talk about the kind of remedies that folks want to see in the aftermath of this pretty horrific incident, but not as horrific as it could
have been in the sense that, as we heard from these officials, it was a very lucky thing that none of those six officers were very badly injured.
All of them treated and released. And so everyone is going to be OK. But, clearly, a lot of concern about this standoff that lasted for so long.
NOBILO: Athena Jones from Philadelphia, thank you very much.
Now, if you're not enamored with flying or birds like me, then you might want to look away for the next 30 seconds. Some passengers said that they
got a new lease on life after a Russian jetliner made an emergency landing near Moscow.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
NOBILO: That's not a good sound. The engines appeared to struggle just before the plane landed in a cornfield on Thursday. Officials say that the
Euro airlines jet struck birds shortly after takeoff.
Passengers were able to walk out of the plane. Dozens were hurt but most of those injuries weren't serious. The pilots later received praise for
(END VIDEO CLIP)
NOBILO: More to come tonight, including, it's a boy. A really big boy. Rhino born at a Netherlands zoo. We'll introduce you to him when we come
NOBILO: Welcome back. I want to take you now to a popular tourist attraction in New York these days. Trump Tower. It sits on glamorous
Fifth Avenue. Now, there's a petition to rename that city block after Donald Trump's predecessor Barack Obama. Our Jeanne Moos addresses the
issue for us.
JEANNE MOOS, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Imagine Donald Trump strolling out the revolving door of Trump Tower onto Obama Avenue? Would
he give that a thumbs up?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Fabulous.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That's ridiculous.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It'll never happen. But I love it.
[14:55:58] MOOS: It's Fifth Avenue now. Full of tourists gawking at Trump Tower, posing with heavily armed officers. While across the street, a
homeless guy displays a sign, "Need money for weed and food."
It was Elizabeth Rowan's idea to propose changing Fifth Avenue's name after she saw this tweet. "New York should rename Fifth Avenue "Barack Obama
Avenue" so that Trump Tower will have to use that as its address forever.
ELIZABETH ROWAN, PETITION ORGANIZER: I thought it was hilarious and I thought it was a fun way to troll the master troll. Honestly, at first, it
was just a joke.
MOOS: But her petition to change the name zoomed past the 100,000 signature mark and keeps climbing. Some have practical reservations.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: People got to get mail. How is that going to work?
MOOS: The proposal divided sisters.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I would do that.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I would never change it.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We have differences in our family.
MOOS (on-camera): Well, I think they want to stick it to the guy who --
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I agree.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Then get out and vote.
MOOS (voice-over): The guy selling anti-Trump stuff like this, "Miss me yet?" Obama button, had his own suggestion.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: As far as annoying Trump, I think Rosie O'Donnell Boulevard would make him even angrier.
MOOS: The Trump we spotted didn't look angry at all, strolling along the proposed -- Barack Obama Avenue.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes.
MOOS: What do you think?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think it's a great idea.
MOOS: It's amazing how you can talk without your lips moving.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm almost like a ventriloquist.
MOOS: Officials in Los Angeles named a part of a freeway after Obama. But there's a catch in New York when it comes to renaming requirements.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: One, that the honoree is dead.
MOOS: Time's not yet up for Obama. As for Donald Trump's immortal words - -
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I could stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody and I wouldn't lose any voters, OK?
MOOS: But does that apply if he stands in the middle of Obama Avenue?
Jeanne Moos, CNN, New York.
NOBILO: A zoo in the Netherland is celebrating an adorable new arrival. This square-lipped rhino was born early today at Royal Burgers' Zoo. He is
still a little unsteady on his feet but appears to be in good health.
While most Rhino species live in solitude, square-lipped rhinos are much more social. This young set is the 10th rhino born at the zoo as part of a
very successful breeding program (INAUDIBLE) proud and protected there.
On that cute note, thank you for watching. Do stay with CNN. "QUEST MEANS BUSINESS" is up next.