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All Eyes On Capitol Hill This Week; North Korean Leader's Picture Is Worth A Thousand Words. Aired 7-8p ET
Aired October 20, 2019 - 19:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANA CABRERA, CNN HOST: You're live in the CNN NEWSROOM. I'm Ana Cabrera in New York.
And new tonight, Senator Lindsey Graham, one of the President's closest allies in the Senate, signaling he could have changed his mind on impeachment. Or at least he's open to it if there's evidence of a crime.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JONATHAN SWAN, NATIONAL POLITICAL REPORTER, AXIOS: Are you open- minded if more comes out that you could support impeachment?
SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM (R), SOUTH CAROLINA: Sure, I mean -- I mean, show me something that -- that -- that is a crime. If you could show me that, you know, Trump actually was engaging in a quid pro quo outside the phone call, that would be very disturbing.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CABRERA: Now, that interview aired on HBO just last hour. It's important to note it was recorded before White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney admitted there was a quid pro quo during a briefing this week.
CNN White House correspondent Jeremy Diamond is live at the White House. Jeremy, Graham has been one of the President's closest friends on Capitol Hill. I can't imagine President Trump is going to like what he just heard.
JEREMY DIAMOND, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Ana, I think there's two ways to look at this. You know, first of all, the President, of course, would like to see all of his Republican allies defend him no matter what he says and no matter what the possibilities may be. On -- on the other hand, what we do know here is that Graham is saying, look, there is a realm of possibility where if there were to be some kind of crime committed, that he -- you know, it could indeed be an impeachable offense.
And while this interview did come before the White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney actually made that stunning admission, saying that there was indeed some kind of a quid pro quo involving security aid for Ukraine and the President's interest in Ukraine investigating the Democratic National Committee as it relates to the 2016 election, Graham spokesman Kevin Bishop is now telling me that Senator Graham has still not heard or seen anything that would rise to the level of an impeachable offense.
So it seems that the -- what the White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney said did not change Graham's impressions. And Lindsey Graham, for now, at least, is not on the side of viewing anything that the President has done so far as impeachable.
CABRERA: OK, important clarification there, Jeremy. We are also following developments on the President's Chief of Staff, Mick Mulvaney. What are you learning?
DIAMOND: That's right. What we're being told is that the President is increasingly frustrated with his White House Chief of Staff. Mulvaney has spent the last several days trying to clean up that briefing room performance on Thursday where he did concede to that quid pro quo. And since then, he has attempted to say, look, there was no quid pro quo at all.
And he spent much of today being confronted with those words that he said during that Thursday briefing, including where he said that is why we held up the money and we do that all the time in reference to a question about a quid pro quo. And now, we are being told that the President, after spending the weekend watching news coverage of Mick Mulvaney and speaking with allies who have also been frustrated with the Chief of Staff's position, that Mulvaney is now on shaky ground.
That being said, Ana, we know that White House staffers frequently find themselves on that kind of shaky ground with the President. That doesn't mean that their exit is necessarily imminent -- Ana.
CABRERA: Jeremy Diamond at the White House for us. Thank you for that reporting.
I want to bring in former presidential adviser to four presidents, CNN's senior political analyst David Gergen.
David, how do you view Senator Graham's comments?
DAVID GERGEN, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, on first hearing, it sounds like he might break. That he would not only support impeachment in the House, but I think the language would suggest that he is open to the idea of voting for a trial to find the -- to find the President guilty.
The more you listen to it and study it, I -- you'd think he's left himself some loopholes. And I think he could scoot out of this. And that is, for -- for example, he says he's got to see a crime committed.
Well, for impeachment, we don't need -- the Congress does not need evidence of a statutory crime. It defines what a high crime means. By definition, the House of Representatives has the constitutional right and constitutional authority to define what a crime is. And Lindsey Graham may easily say, well, that's not what I had in mind, I had in mind a statutory crime.
So I think we should be careful here about giving too much weight to what Lindsey Graham has said so far.
CABRERA: We heard him --
GERGEN: And we know for a fact that his history, his behavior, he's gone both ways on President Trump recently.
GERGEN: And so, you don't know which way he's going this -- today.
CABRERA: And we heard him say the transcript of the President's call with the President of Ukraine wasn't enough to put him, you know, across that line.
CABRERA: He says he's looking for quid pro quo, but we did all hear this week White House Acting Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney admit to a quid pro quo on Thursday. I wonder, then, what kind of evidence Senator Graham needs.
GERGEN: Well, that's a good question. But, again, here, we do have this disqualifier that Nick -- Mick Mulvaney basically says he had a press conference and he was misquoted, that he was not understood correctly. And that's why he came back and -- and, you know, tried to clean it up. However --
CABRERA: But we didn't misquote him. Maybe he meant he misspoke, I don't know. But just -- I mean, the facts are there.
GERGEN: Well, he basically said, no, the -- you know, he -- he blamed the press and I --
GERGEN: I think, with all due respect to him, the fact was everybody who was in that press room, I think, walked away with one interpretation.
My team checked out eight different major publications to what they had on their Web sites after he first spoke. Every single one of them interpreted it as a quid pro quo, a concession and acknowledgment that there was a quid pro quo.
He's coming along behind the -- behind that assertion, tried to clean it up. And so, there are two -- there are two Mulvaney narratives here, competing narratives. And for that, I must say, I think what's really important is for the Congress to have a chance to put Mick Mulvaney under oath. And let's see what he says then.
CABRERA: And now, sources telling CNN President Trump is increasingly agitated with Mulvaney. But here is what Mulvaney said just this morning when pressed about his future.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CHRIS WALLACE, FOX NEWS HOST: After the briefing and all the blowback and the criticism, did you ever offer or think to offer the President your resignation?
MICK MULVANEY, ACTING WHITE HOUSE CHIEF OF STAFF: No, absolutely not.
WALLACE: Was that ever discussed?
MULVANEY: Absolutely, positively not.
MULVANEY: No, I'm -- listen, I'm -- I'm very happy there. Did -- did I have the perfect press conference? No. But, again, the facts are on our side. I still think I'm -- I'm doing a pretty good job as a Chief of Staff, and I -- I think the President agrees.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CABRERA: David, do you agree, is Mulvaney doing a good job?
GERGEN: Well, he may be doing the best job that can be done under the circumstances. I -- I don't think anybody could be a really good Chief of Staff -- and -- under this President who wants to run the show himself. And he will always be second-guessing whoever is -- is working for him. And once he sees, you know, a weakness or a mistake, boom, he lowers the hammer.
Yes, so I -- I -- I think, yes, Ana, there are strong grounds for letting Nick (ph) Mulvaney go. He's -- he's holding -- he's got two hats on. He's -- he's -- he is the director of OMB, the Office of Management and Budget. Plus, he's the Acting Chief of Staff.
On balance, I think the President probably would want to keep him because he's -- he's going to be very, very hard to replace. He has a lot of knowledge now about how the place can work. He knows where the weak spots are. It's really hard to find somebody and amidst of a -- a moment of peril for the White House to find somebody and move him in the middle of it and have it -- have it work well.
CABRERA: Well, Jared Kushner has been involved in all kinds of things.
CABRERA: And in fact, our reporting is Jared Kushner was among those looking for Mick Mulvaney's replacement.
CABRERA: Even before the -- the House launched their impeachment inquiry.
GERGEN: Yes. Yes.
CABRERA: Do you think -- I mean, he -- is he already the de facto Chief of Staff?
GERGEN: Well, he is -- that's been the problem for every Chief of Staff. He is the shadow Chief of Staff. And, you know, people can go to the Chief of Staff and then they go to Kushner or vice versa. And that's not a workable way to run a -- run a railroad and not just the White House, you know.
So it is -- I think if the President has lost confidence in him, then -- then that's a different matter. Once you lose confidence and you've got a chaotic White House and you -- you're in the midst of peril, you probably ought to go ahead and find somebody else, but it's going to be difficult to do. And I don't think he ought to make Jared Kushner his Chief of Staff. I think that would be a real mistake.
CABRERA: The President has also reversed course. And this stood out because we know this President doesn't do this.
CABRERA: He announced that the G-7 will not be held at his property, Doral. Again, this is a president who doubles down, triples down when he's under fire in the past. Noah Bookbinder, the executive director of Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington weighed in on the President's reversal, calling it a bow to reality.
I just wonder, why is this the issue that made the President cave? What do you think?
GERGEN: Because it's such an obvious one. The public can understand it so easily, the double-dealing that you -- you -- you bring people in and put them in your hotel, and you realize a lot of, you know, profits over time whether it's that immediate deal or the hotel's reputation grows and people want to come there in the future.
That -- that is the very definition of corruption. And, you know, one newspaper after another, the editorial pages were arguing in the -- in the last couple of days, this would be corrupt. And I think under those circumstances, when he's got an impeachment knot -- you know, the shadow of impeachment falling over his presidency -- he had to give way.
And I don't think it was easy. I'm sure he's really angry about it. But you do wonder where in the hell was the Chief of Staff and where were the other people he's authorized trying to stop him before he made the first mistake? I mean, it was so obvious on its face. Even a 10-year-old would understand that there is a conflict there.
CABRERA: David Gergen, thank you.
GERGEN: OK, thank you.
CABRERA: And now, we have some breaking news overseas as CNN cameras on the ground capture the largest U.S. troop withdrawal from Syria. Details on the situation there, next.
CABRERA: We are following a developing story out of northern Syria. Hundreds of trucks carrying U.S. forces are on their way out of the country with the largest troop withdrawal from the region now underway.
Check out this exclusive video from CNN's cameras on the ground. U.S. personnel seen heading east to their next destination, Iraq. President Trump has said numerous times over the past week that the troops would be coming home. But it appears that is not the case, at least not now.
And this just in to CNN, Syrian-Kurdish forces say a key part of this U.S.-brokered ceasefire is being implemented as their fighters have begun pulling out of a Turkish designated safe zone in northern Syria. And Turkey's President has said the offensive would resume if the U.S. does not deliver on its guarantee to get the Kurds out of that area by Tuesday night.
CNN's Nick Paton Walsh has been following all the latest on the ground in northern Syria and has more.
NICK PATON WALSH, CNN SECURITY CORRESPONDENT: They don't really want to leave, but still they have to. The decisions in Washington that are bringing the American and British and other European nations campaign here in Syria against ISIS in such a hasty end.
Well, they're being implemented behind me. Over a hundred American armored vehicles have arrived here to gather at this rallying point before they begin the final journey out of Syria that really marks a deeply symbolic end. The largest land movement they've made since they've been inside Syria, the United States.
They'll be going into Iraqi Kurdistan where senior officials say they will continue the campaign against ISIS but from a different territory. So complicated now, their fight against that terror group and just at the moment where it seemed ISIS were beginning to be slowly extinguished here over time.
This has been a hasty move, make no doubt about it. No military planner wants to have their movements broadcast weeks possibly before they get to implement it. And certainly, they've only had a matter of days here to implement contingency plans.
But we will be seeing large numbers of Americans on the move through Syria in the hours and days ahead, and that will mark the end of this messy number of weeks in which Washington policymakers have moved so fast, often, their critics say, with so little direction or certainty about what they're doing, and left the brave men and women here of U.S. forces and it's true to say, the Syrian-Kurds who died in -- over 10,000 sons and daughters in number fighting to rid this area of ISIS, left them very much reeling to catch up with those decisions. The Syrian-Kurds feeling deeply betrayed.
But behind me here, this land movement's beginning. It will be enormous. And it will be deeply symbolic, I think, in the hearts of many American soldiers who weren't quite ready to bring this campaign to an end, and certainly not ever in these circumstances.
Nick Paton Walsh, CNN, northern Syria.
CABRERA: Now, I want to bring in CNN national security commentator, Mike Rogers. He is the former Republican chairman of the House Intelligence Committee.
Congressman, among the most consequential decisions a president makes are those involving our troops. Today, the President claimed troops were headed home when they're not. Apparently, they're staying in the Middle East. In that same statement, he also calls his Defense Secretary Mark Esperanto instead of Mark Esper. Is this acceptable from the Commander-in-Chief?
MIKE ROGERS, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY CONTRIBUTOR: Well, Ana, candidly, I think this is one of the -- the biggest disasters in their foreign policy decision-making. I think it was intemperate when it was made. It was hasty when it was made, and it -- not just in the fact -- and we talked about this a lot, and this is really important -- that we walked away from an ally. That some 10,000 people gave their lives fighting ISIS under at our encouragement, our -- sometimes our control and our support.
But the fact that we were so hasty in the withdrawal that our forces had to call in artillery on their own positions to blow up ordinates so bad guys didn't get it and in a matter of hours, they had Russian journalists in places that the U.S. occupied, trying to keep peace and stability about the -- the U.S. withdrawal, I mean, this is an unmitigated disaster.
And we're going to pay for this down the road. Some people think this is of no consequence, and certainly, the President likes to term it as, you know, nobody wants to be there, which is true. However, ISIS is the one that declared war on the United States, has made efforts to try to do events -- terrorist events here in the United States.
And so, now, we're going to have to deal with this aftermath in a way that, A, our allies are a little less sure of us, our adversaries are more emboldened, and certainly, ISIS is going to try to regain some territory here in the confusion.
CABRERA: How do you make sense of this decision to pull the troops out of this area if they're not coming home?
ROGERS: Ana, I don't. And by the way, you're taking them back into -- to Iraq and saying that they're going to conduct operations back into Syria. Well, that's exactly what Obama did for years. Candidly, it wasn't working. It was ineffective.
And so, when Trump took over, there were lots of military folks and national security folks who applauded his action to say we're going to allow our special forces capabilities to go forward with Kurdish units to actually help provide intelligence packages and logistics packages and med-evac and target their -- their efforts so that they're more effective on the battlefield.
And by the way, it came to a quick end. I mean, they actually, you know, raced across Syria because of that planning and that freedom to do exactly that. And so, this makes no sense whatsoever. We're going right back to the same plan that, I would argue, and many in the national security space would argue, got us into this mess in the first place.
CABRERA: Former Republican, now Independent Congressman Justin Amash says President Trump is treating our American troops like paid mercenaries. Listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. JUSTIN AMASH (I), MICHIGAN: He's moving troops back into Iraq. He is moving other troops into Saudi Arabia. And -- and he is using our forces almost as mercenaries. They're paid mercenaries who are going to go in and -- and as long as Saudi Arabia pays us some money, it's -- it's good to go.
What happened to the American people having their voices heard through the representatives in Congress? We should make those decisions in Congress. And frankly, we've been in -- in the Middle East for way too long, we've been in Afghanistan for, obviously, way too long, and we should bring people home.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CABRERA: Your response? How do you see it?
ROGERS: Well, first of all, Justin Amash was never a Republican. He was a libertarian who ran under the Republican ticket, number one.
Number two, that all sounds great except where did, you know, ISIS try to conduct attacks? They attacked from the Middle East. They tried to coordinate, finance, train from the Middle East. Where, in fact, did al Qaeda attack the United States? It was from Afghanistan.
And so, when you just say we're just going to come home because it's easy, that does not deal with the idea that these terrorist organizations trained, financed, and gained comfort in these areas. And we call them safe havens. And what we determined in -- in the very beginning was you have to take away those safe havens if you're going deny them the ability to launch attacks against the United States.
And I would argue that's been very, very effective. It's not great. I -- nobody wants to be there forever. And you're trying to build local capabilities to try to handle this problem.
But by just packing up and saying, well, this is hard -- I mean, this is that fast-food, you know, society mentality. It's hard and therefore, we're just going to pack up and leave. Guess what? They're not going to pack up and leave. They're going to find opportunities to strike back, including, by the way, the United States of America.
And a few there to prevent a large casualty here is an easy, easy trade for -- for most people who are thinking through what our threats are across the Middle East. And again, this was a small -- this -- we had hundreds of soldiers leveraging up the Kurdish forces in Syria. I can't find a better way to try do this.
This didn't have big divisions, big military movements. It had a small number of special-capability soldiers helping the Kurds be more effective in their fighting. To me, that is exactly the way you want to do this.
CABRERA: And now, you're saying there could be big consequences. Former Congressman Mike Rogers, thank you. We'll talk to you again a little bit later about declassifying tonight.
He's not known to back down from a fight, but now, President Trump is saying his Doral resort will no longer host the G-7. What that could mean for the summit in your weekend presidential brief, next.
CABRERA: Double down. Defend and fight back. President Trump is no stranger to letting the world know that he is presumably right on just about everything. But in a rare reversal, the President abruptly announced that next year's G-7 Summit would not be held at his resort in Doral, Florida after facing bipartisan backlash.
That brings us to your weekend presidential brief with CNN national security analyst Samantha Vinograd. It's a segment we bring you every weekend with the most pressing national security issues the President will face tomorrow. And Sam also helped prepare the daily presidential brief under President Obama.
And, Sam, you've been at these summits before. What type of security impact will all this have?
SAMANTHA VINOGRAD, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: Well, Ana, I was actually at the G-8 when we held it at Camp David. We went through an extensive vetting process before choosing Camp David as a site. This team took the opposite approach.
If they had vetted Doral before rolling it out as a summit site, their lawyers would have raised significant concerns. The constitution contains specific language barring the President from accepting emoluments, really meaning profits, from foreign or domestic officials.
But even leaving aside the legal issues and the fact that the President has now walked back this decision, the security impact is already there. Foreign officials are aware that the President announced this as part of a rough -- a rush job and that his priority was on his pocketbook and not on thorough vetting a site to make sure that there were appropriate security arrangements on the site.
The G-7 is a high-value target from a security perspective, and the President was more focused on, again, lining his pocketbook rather than this -- the security aspect of this summit.
And from a counterintelligence perspective, the fact that the President is so focused on his businesses is a manipulation point. Foreign governments know that if they, say, agree to stay at a Trump hotel, that will curry them favor with this administration. And so, for that reason, it raises counterintelligence red flags.
CABRERA: We're also following the breaking news out of northern Syria, the largest U.S. troop withdrawal from that region currently underway. What should we expect this week?
VINOGRAD: Well, near term, we're waiting to see what Erdogan unplugged looks like. The worst thing that Erdogan has suffered since invading Syria and reportedly conducting war crimes is a visit from Pompeo and from Pence. So, at this point, we're really counting on him not to hurt the Kurds any more, and I think there's a slim chance that he sticks to that.
From a counterterrorism perspective, this is already having an impact. The Kurdish forces that we worked with fought ISIS, collected intelligence on ISIS, and guarded ISIS prisons.
At this point, they have to refocus on defending themselves against Turkey rather than on the counterterrorism mission. We've withdrawn about a thousand troops from Syria which means that we have 2,000 less U.S. less eyes and ears on the ground collecting intelligence on ISIS as well.
And finally, President Trump has said that he is the best friend that Israel has ever had. But with their withdrawal, there are less U.S. troops in Syria to deter Iran from striking Israel. That means that Israel is dependent on Russia and on -- and on Assad to keep them safe from Iranian attacks. And those are pretty unreliable partners.
CABRERA: You mentioned Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. He gave an interview earlier today in which he insulted former Deputy Secretary of State Bill Burns. Will this matter within the State Department? VINOGRAD: I think it will. Ambassador Burns is the gold standard
when it comes to diplomacy. I served with him for over a decade, and I can tell you I never even what political party he was from because he's a career foreign service officer and served under multiple presidents.
The Secretary of State's interview really cements the narrative that he defends political operatives and operations like Giuliani, Sondland, and Volker, and does not defend career diplomats like Ambassador Burns or Ambassador Yovanovitch.
I think this will lead more career officials to speak up. We've already had Ambassador Mike McKinley resign from the State Department and testify. And this week, another career official, Bill Taylor, the Acting Ambassador to Ukraine, is going to testify.
[19:30:00] SAMANTHA VINOGRAD, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: And finally, Ana, if the secretary of state was so willing to be this political with the camera is rolling, I'm deeply concerned what he is saying behind closed doors in terms of the political agenda that he and the President share.
ANA CABRERA, CNN HOST: Sam Vionograd, thank you for putting all of this in our radar. We appreciate it. Good to see you.
All eyes on Capitol Hill this week as more witnesses are expected to testify before Congress in the Ukraine controversy, but will the White House try to block them? We will answer your questions coming up.
[19:34:35] CABRERA: After such an astonishing week in the impeachment inquiry, including that admission and then the subsequent walk back from acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney that the President held up Ukraine aid to get it to investigate Democrats.
We thought you might have questions, so what better time for cross- exam with CNN legal analyst and former federal and state prosecutor Elie Honig.
And Elie, one of our viewers wants to know to what extent did Mulvaney's public comments undercut Trump's no quid pro quo defense? And can the House use Mulvaney's comments against the President?
[19:35:05] ELIE HONIG, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: Well, that was certainly an interesting press conference. We saw Mulvaney get behind a microphone and very publicly engaged in act of self-destruction. He admit it there was a quid pro quo but he told us get over it.
Ana, I have some weak and desperate legal defenses in my time but get over it I think is a new low.
Now, the White House was not over it. They very quickly walk back it back, ran it back, and came up with a spin. Well, Trump is actually, he is really about busting up corruption. The problem is it is completely contrary to facts and reality. Now, can Mulvaney statement be used against President Trump? Yes,
there is a doctrine in law called statement by a party agent. And what that means is if I have somebody who speaks for me, an attorney, a spokesperson, a chief of staff and they say something relating to that relationship, then yes, it can be used against me. But let's keep in mind this is impeachment so the normal courtroom rules do not apply. Really, the House and Senate can consider whatever they deem appropriate. But I do think Mick Mulvaney statement is very much in play and will prove very damaging to Donald Trump.
CABRERA: This week we saw the U.S. ambassador to the EU, Gordon Sondland, go to Capitol Hill. He testified behind closed doors to Congress under subpoena that he was directed by President Trump to work with Rudy Giuliani on Ukraine and one viewer asked this. Can the President order government employees to defy a House subpoena? And what are the consequences if that employee disobeys the President?
HONIG: So the President certainly has been trying. They have been stonewalling the impeachment inquiry from the start, giving a blanket order that executive branch employees should not obey subpoenas. That said we saw that stonewall start to crumble this week as a parade of career public officials came in and gave testimony. They essentially said, all due respect, Mr. President, we got subpoenas. We are going to testify.
There's really only one thing the White House can do to stop it and that's to go into court and get a restraining order stopping these people from testifying. But it's difficult to do that importantly and legally. And importantly they did not do it this week. So I think the White House called its own bluff.
The other potential remedy is they can fire people who testified but would be politically reckless and I think would cause a serious public backlash.
CABRERA: The President and his team have given all kinds of reasons to not releasing the President's tax returns. He is under audit, voters don't care, they are too complex. Just a few examples of the excuses. But one viewer wants to know, what happens next in the courts on Congress' efforts to obtain his tax returns?
HONIG: So important ruling from the federal court of appeals in Washington D.C., they upheld a congressional subpoena to Mazar's (ph) which the accounting firm that has Trump's tax returns. The court of appeals made an important ruling, Congress has broad, not unlimited but broad subpoena power. And importantly, the court said the house does not need to take a full vote in order to start an impeachment inquiry.
I think it is worth noting by like the committee that served the subpoena here was the House oversight committee chaired by Elijah Cummings, who passed away untimely last week, but he was a long proponent of congressional oversight. I think this opinion will be an important part of his legacy.
The White House has two cards left to play here. First, they can seek what is called unbanked review which means all 17 judges on the court of appeals in D.C. hears the case. It's very rare. I do not think it's likely they will get it. And number two, they can try and get it to the Supreme Court but the Supreme Court only takes a very small fraction of cases, under five percent, if the Supreme Court takes it, of course, they will have the final say. If not, it is over. And those returns have to go over to Congress.
CABRERA: Right. And your questions for the week ahead.
HONIG: It will another interesting week. First of all, we will have testimony from more career public officials, most interesting will be Bill Taylor. He is the one that famously texted, it is crazy to withhold security assistance for help with political campaigns. Second of all, how will the House respond now that the White House has ignored its subpoena for documents? And third, what will happen next in the saga of Rudy Giuliani.
I just have to say as a southern district law, it's jarring to see the former leader of the office now in its crosshairs. I don't know what is going to happen, but I know this. If the evidence is there and the case is just, he will be charged. If not, he won't. The southern district will do justice one way or the other.
CABRERA: All right. Elie Honig as always. Thank you for answering all of our questions and making sure you ask yours, go to CNN.com to submit them.
HONIG: Thanks, Ana.
CABRERA: Ahead of another big week of testimony on Capitol Hill, we have new CNN reporting about President Trump's acting chief of staff who admitted a quid pro quo with Ukraine. How a source tells us the President is frustrated with Mulvaney.
[19:43:15] CABRERA: Declassified, untold stories of American spies is back tonight with an all new episode. And this week, it is the manhunt for general Krstic who committed unspeakable atrocities during the Bosnian war and became one of the most notorious was criminal of all time. Here's a preview.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Bear in mind what happened, the date and accords stopped the worrying elements. It did not include people who were war criminals to take off your uniform and give yourself up, you need to be arrested. None of that took place.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You had a guy like general Krstic who committed atrocities and after the date and peace accords wiped the slate clean and now he is a credible commanding general and he committed genocide. So the Muslims kept asking, where is the justice?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And what we recognized and what they were insistent on is you could not have peace without justice. And so the justice meant identifying the perpetrators of the war crimes, so they could be turned over to the criminal tribunal.
CABRERA: Mike Rogers, host of "Declassified" is back with us now.
First, just refresh our memories of the Bosnian war, how it started and who was involved?
MIKE ROGERS, CNN HOST, DECLASSIFIED: Well, it was really several groups and factions. It started out as what we used to know as Yugoslavia and it broke up into Croatia and Bosnia. And that separation caused real rifts. And they started up this worrying factions within that very desperate country side where candidly folks who were going after Muslims and Muslims going after Christians and what happened was there was real genocide across populations in Bosnia at the time.
And so, what happened was our British counterpart, Tony Blair got elected as prime minister. And he decided and came to the United States and convinced president Clinton at the time, hey, this is a huge problem. We can't have these folks who are committing acts of genocide. I mean, they were slaughter innocent men, women and children and you can't just let them go. Need to do something about it.
And so because of all of that after the ceasefire they realized we are going to have to find these folks and bring them to justice for war crimes. And what is great about this, Ana, is you get the real story from general Wesley Clark who was there and the commanding officer there. and Leon Pennetta who was chief of staff to president Clinton and then went on to be defense secretary. And we have great voices telling the story including operators who do this work. And you can't see their face and their voices are distorted. But to have someone like that walking through the challenges in the case of this, it's just absolutely fascinating.
[19:46:08] CABRERA: Yes, incredible. Who was general Krstic? And why was it so important to bring him especially to justice?
ROGERS: Because he used the military apparatus, the fact that he was a general officer. He used his military prowess to commit just this horrible acts of genocide. Again, literally slaughtering people and burying them in unmarked graves, in mass graves. And so, he used, again, all of the elements he had as a commanding officer to kill candidly, innocent men, women and children to degrees we don't even know if we want to talk about on TV.
But again, what happened is and the reason I think the show is so important is it walks us through that and then it shows the length the United States and our allies went to, to bring justice for those slaughtered victims and make sure this never happens again. It was really an important part of our history. You know, it gets swept aside by many other big events but this was an important time in our history. And the players on this are on screen tonight talking about exactly how they went through the process to do that. And you will hear more about the general Krstic and what he was all about in this program tonight.
CABRERA: I am really glad you are bringing this to all of us.
Congressman Rogers, thank you again for being here.
CABRERA: An all new episode of "Declassified: untold stories of American spies" airs tonight at a new time, 11:00 p.m. eastern only on CNN.
Coming up, prince Harry for the first time admits a royal rift with his brother, William.
[19:51:25] CABRERA: We have royal news tonight. In a few interview, Britain's prince Harry acknowledges what the press speculated for month, that there is a rift between him and his brother prince William.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There has been a lot of talk about a rift between you and your brother, how much is that true?
PRINCE HARRY, DUKE OF SUSSEX: A part of this role and part of this job and this family being under the pressure it's under, it's never to be stuff happens, but like we are brothers. We will always be brothers. And we are setting out on different paths at the moment. But I will always business there for him. I know he will always business there for me. We don't see each other as much as we used to, because we are so busy. But I love him dearly. And, you know, the majority of this stuff, the majority of the stuff is created out of nothing. But you know it's as brothers, you know, you have good day, you have bad days.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CABRERA: Now that interview aired as a part of an i-TV documentary between Harry and Megan's racing trip to Africa.
Their picture is worth a thousand words. Kim Jong-un riding a white stallion on top of a mountain. Analysts say this is Pyongyang's propaganda machine in overdrive. But given Kim's track record at that mountain, this is likely more than just a photo shoot.
CNN's Brian Todd reports.
BRIAN TODD, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): There is nothing for Kim Jong-un quite like a ride on a stallion on a revered mountaintop as a means of inspiring his people. This time, the North Koreans made an event out of it that they pulled their legendary state TV anchor (INAUDIBLE) out of semi retirement to give her signature breathless narration.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: (SPEAKING FOREIGN LANGUAGE)
TODD: Pongyang's state run news agency released several photographs of Kim riding the galloping horse atop North Korea's highest peak, the volcanic mount Paektu. It said he was taking in the first winter snow and called it a quote "great event of really (ph) importance."
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's clear that the North Koreans are in full propaganda, full culture personality mode.
TODD: For North Koreans, few places are as sacred as mount Paektu, located in northern Changbai (ph) county. It is the birthplace about 4000 years ago of the mythical founder kingdom of Korea. And the Kim dynasty has co-opted that story.
ANNA FIFIELD, AUTHOR, THE GREAT SUCCESSORS: Kim Jong-un derives his legitimacy as the leader of North Korea from this kind of mythical Paektu blood line that they call it. This idea that the Kim have descended from mythical Mount Paektu and North Korea and therefore have been divinely chosen to be the leaders of North Korea. So Kim Jong-un says he has Paektu blood in his veins.
FRANK JANNUZI, THE MANSFIELD MOUNTAIN: I think a good way to think about mount Paektu is a little bit like Camp David. It's a place where the North Korean leader would go to reflect and ponder important moves.
TODD: Kim ascended mount Paektu near the time of the test firing of his largest intercontinental ballistic missile, again ahead of the diplomatic opening with South Korea. And he went there just before giving a chilling order, which consolidated his power.
MICHAEL MADDEN, NORTH KOREA LEADERSHIP WATCH: The most famous instance of Kim Jong-un going up to Changbai county was within it was about two weeks before they executed Jang Song-thaek in 2013.
TODD: Jang Song-thaek was Kim's powerful uncle who he accused of treason and reportedly had executed with an anti-aircraft gun. On this visit, Kim pulled a page out of the Putin playbook, the Russian president is fond of being photographed on his horse including a shortlist ride. The two strong men held a summit in Vladivostok this spring. It is unknown if Putin coached Kim on horseback propaganda, but analysts are concerned about what this photo shoot might foreshadow.
[19:55:02] MICHAEL GREEN, CENTER FOR STRATEGIC AND INTERNATIONAL STUDIES: Most likely scenario, frankly, is that they are going to resume missile tests because they are unhappy with the U.S. unwillingness to accept their demands. And the most recent working level talks between the U.S. and DPRK fell apart.
TODD: Analysts say the mount Paektu visit could also be a sign that Kim may be getting ready to make a deal with President Trump. And the clock may be ticking for that. North Korea previously gave an ultimatum that progress on nuclear talks has to be made by year's end. And Trump is gearing up for a contentious reelection campaign, where he is under more pressure than over for a foreign policy victory.
Brian Todd, CNN, Washington.
CABRERA: Now as we learn how people inside the White House plotted against Mick Mulvaney, the acting chief of staff is suddenly a source of the President's frustration. More on that.
Plus, one of the President's closest congressional ally says his mind could be changed on impeachment if the evidence arises.
[19:59:35] CABRERA: A former Baltimore mayor and brother to House speaker Nancy Pelosi has died. Thomas D'Alesandro III served as Baltimore's mayor from 1967 to 1971 and led the city during the 1968 riots that followed the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. The Baltimore's son says D'Alesandro died at home today after complications from a stroke. He was 90-years-old.
In a statement, speaker Pelosi described her brother as the finest public servant she ever knew.