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ISIS Leader Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi Is Dead; California Is Under A Statewide Fire Emergency; Former Congressman John Conyers Has Died. Aired 7-8p ET
Aired October 27, 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: This man, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. Reportedly killed by American Special Forces during a nighttime raid on his compound in Syria Saturday.
President Trump says everyone involved has no doubt that Baghdadi is dead, confirmed by a DNA test on the spot, and that the terrorist leader killed himself and others, including his own children, to avoid being captured.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: He died after running into a dead-end tunnel, whimpering and crying and screaming all the way. He had dragged three of his young children with him. They were led to certain death.
He reached the end of the tunnel as our dogs chased him down. He ignited his vest, killing himself and the three children. His body was mutilated by the blast.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CABRERA: And this is where it happened. This is northwestern Syria, not far from the Turkish border, where, analysts say, Baghdadi was able to live in relative anonymity. Airstrikes destroyed nearly everything in that compound. Here's a closer look from CNN's Nick Paton Walsh.
NICK PATON WALSH, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): It was the hardest of places to get into and hardest to guess he'd be hiding in.
This is all that's left of where the world's most wanted man hid, possibly for weeks. Much of intelligence value whisked away, flattened to rubble by repeated airstrikes. Cleared up, it seems, by the Islamists who control the area.
We obtain these images from a local cameraman able to function in a region where al Qaeda is strong but where, elsewhere, civilians are bombed too often for life to be normal. Two of the dead here collected and taken away.
Shells litter the area perhaps from the eight helicopters that arrived here in the dead of night before U.S. commandos blew holes through the compound walls.
Ahmed was woken just before 11:00 p.m. local time and was shocked to see helicopters hovering about 150 meters up. Ninety minutes later, a blast follows. Doors and windows of houses as far as one kilometer away were completely shattered, he said.
AHMAD AL MOHAMMED, WITNESSED U.S. MILITARY RAID (through translator): We waited until sunrise before we came here, and we saw the bodies of the martyrs, women and children, body parts about six to seven dead. In the morning, we heard that Baghdadi was here, but people living here thought displaced people from Aleppo lived in the house working in the cattle and grain trade.
WALSH: No one knows, he said, exactly what happened.
(SPEAKING IN FOREIGN LANGUAGE)
WALSH: Somewhat below this dust is the tunnel where President Donald Trump said Baghdadi blew himself up killing his three children with him. But by dawn, there was so little left to pick over here. Baghdadi's sudden end is fleeting as his appearances in the world he cursed with radicalized violence.
Nick Paton Walsh, CNN, Erbil, northern Iraq.
CABRERA: The leader of ISIS may be dead, but analysts say the group's violent ideology and influence is still a big concern. Under Baghdadi's rein, ISIS terrorists took the innocent lives of countless people and, among them, many Americans.
Sadly, their names get lost as time passes -- James Foley, a journalist; Kayla Mueller, a humanitarian aid worker; and this young man, Peter Kassig, who CNN interviewed in 2012.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PETER KASSIG, AMERICAN AID WORKER BEHEADED BY ISIL: We each get one life, and that's it. We get one shot at this, and we don't get any do-overs, you know. And, like, for me, it was -- it was time to put up or shut up.
The way I saw it, I didn't have a choice, you know. Like, this is what I was put here to do. I guess I'm just a hopeless romantic and I'm an idealist and I believe in hopeless causes.
There's this impression, this belief, that there is no hope, you know. That's when it's more important than ever that we come in against all odds and try to do something.
(END VIDEO CLIP) CABRERA: Sulome Anderson is sitting here with me now. And for you, I
-- I see the tears in your eyes. Those are so genuine. This is so personal. You were really close. That was your friend, Peter Kassig --
SULOME ANDERSON, FRIEND OF PETER KASSIG: Yes.
CABRERA: -- who was killed by ISIS terrorists. What was your reaction when you heard the ISIS leader had been killed?
ANDERSON: It's pretty complicated. I mean, obviously, the impulse is to say thank God that this man is gone from the world. But on several other levels, I reacted in a way that many people might find a little strange.
But from a strategic counterterrorism perspective as well as from an emotional perspective, I just think there's a lot more going on than people are really talking about.
For example, I've heard many people speak about the ideology and how difficult it is to combat, but I'm not sure how many people have really been talking about the lessons of history. And I'm not talking about, like, ancient history. I'm talking about very recent history.
If you look at what happened with Zarqawi, the leader of AQI, al Qaeda and Iraq, which was basically the core of what became ISIS, he -- so many mistakes were being made at that time that are being repeated now.
You had an administration that was dedicated to the idea of declaring victory, ignoring the rising insurgency, ignoring intelligence that was telling them that this is still a threat.
You had the -- the sectarian intentions that were being ignored or exacerbated, no deradicalization efforts, there -- there were so many things that were going on that are happening again. And I see it happening and it just makes me think, you know, we're going to live through it again.
CABRERA: So I hear the concern in your voice and in your words about, you know, what is next and how this is just maybe one moment to celebrate, but it doesn't resolve the conflict and the problem and the root cause of the death of your friend, Peter Kassig. I -- because you were close with him, have you had a chance to talk to his family today?
ANDERSON: I have, yes.
CABRERA: And what is their thought about all of this? ANDERSON: I don't want to speak for them, but I would say, overall,
they agree with me. And the impression that I got is that they would prefer that this be addressed in a more effective way, creating dialogue, reconciliation, lasting change, as opposed to -- I'm not -- I don't want to put words in their mouths -- but symbolic killings.
CABRERA: We talked so much about Baghdadi today and about these terrorists, and I really want to take a moment to honor the lives that have been taken way too soon. Tell us more about your friend, Peter.
ANDERSON: I mean, you -- just from watching that short clip, I think you could probably get a sense of him. He was exactly as he presented himself. And that's just pure heart, all -- he's very transparent. There was no calculation. There was no sort of machinations going on there.
What you saw was what you got with Pete. And he is just -- he was just one -- he was like -- I've never met anyone like him. He just wanted to help. That's all he wanted.
CABRERA: And he was in Syria to help those people who were suffering in the civil wars. Is that right?
ANDERSON: That's right, yes. Yes, he was -- he went in there to save civilians lives, risking his own and for no reason. He had no -- nothing connecting him to the region other than his time as a Ranger during the Iraq war.
He felt a responsibility to try and rebuild what he saw as what we had destroyed in the region, and he wanted to do it with his skills, which were medical.
CABRERA: What needs to happen now in terms of honoring Peter, honoring other victims? I know you have interviewed, as a journalist yourself, other people who have been victimized by ISIS, women who have been raped, children who have been orphaned. You've talked with ISIS members as well. What do you think the solution is in terms of combating this terror group?
ANDERSON: Well, I mean, I think, first of all, the way to honor their victims is to prevent more of them. And there are many, many steps we could be taking that we're not.
For example, we -- we could be stabilizing the region. I know people think nation-building is like a bad term, but in a way, I mean, it's very necessary to build up institutions, to build up moderate forces in the region, moderate military forces and government forces like maybe the Kurds, which isn't going so well right now. You know, assisting in -- in -- in processing prisoners and securing them.
And then something that is really dear to my heart that people don't really talk about is the deradicalization process. Because you have these children who I've interviewed who were raised in ISIS schools. They have been brainwashed, basically, at a young age.
And you take them and you throw them in a displacement camp in terrible, inhumane conditions, and you leave them just to radicalize further. And there's no effort made on a therapeutic level, on any sort of level, to deradicalize them and --
ANDERSON: -- and sort of divert them from that path. I just feel like we just -- we're making the same mess that we made before. And I don't want to -- I don't want to minimize the loss that this is to ISIS.
It's a huge symbolic loss, obviously, but, 90 percent, they've already groomed another leader. And the networks are all still in place. And they're going into insurgency mode as they -- as they did previously. Like, one man's death is not the death of an ideology.
CABRERA: Sulome Anderson, thank you so much for offering your thoughts on all of this.
ANDERSON: Thank you.
CABRERA: I appreciate it. Our breaking news we're following right now, California Congresswoman Katie Hill has just announced she is resigning from Congress amid a sex scandal. We'll have those details next.
CABRERA: Breaking news, a fall from grace for a California Congresswoman once seen as a rising star in the Democratic Party. Freshman Katie Hill just announced she is resigning amid a bizarre scandal involving racy photos and an alleged affair with a congressional staffer.
She just tweeted this -- it is with a broken heart that, today, I announce my resignation from Congress. This is the hardest thing I've ever had a to do, but I believe it is the best thing for my constituents, my community, and our country.
CNN's Kyung Lah spoke to voters in Hill's district just before the news broke.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Disappointment. Big disappointment.
KYUNG LAH, CNN SENIOR NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): It's been a long week for Linda Scabarna (ph) and Martha Jones, volunteers for Katie Hill's 2018 congressional campaign.
MARTHA JONES, KATIE HILL VOLUNTEER: I'm disappointed because it puts our seat at risk, I think, which is, to me, the most important thing.
LAH (voice-over): They're talking about the crisis unfolding around Representative Hill. The House Ethics Committee announced an investigation into claims that Hill had an improper relationship with a member of her congressional staff, a violation of House rules.
Hill calls the charge absolutely false and said she would cooperate with the inquiry. But explicit personal photos of the Congresswoman and a campaign staffer were leaked and published online.
In response, Hill admitted to that relationship. However, that relationship would not violate congressional ethics rules.
CROWD: Katie! Katie!
REP. KATIE HILL (D), CALIFORNIA: Every single vote will matter.
LAH (voice-over): A turn for a rising Democratic star. Hill was a first-time candidate last year, a millennial --
HILL: Hi, it's Katie Hill.
LAH (voice-over): -- and outraised the Republican incumbent by millions, promising change. She flipped California's 25th Congressional District, a Los Angeles suburb dotted by quaint streets and planned communities Republicans held since the early '90s.
Hill was among the record-setting 127 women elected in the 2018 midterms, part of the response to the election of Donald Trump.
JONES: Would we lose the -- the seat to the Republicans again? I -- I don't know. I am not saying we would, hopefully not, but it just doesn't help.
LAH (voice-over): Some Democrats in Hill's district say personal issues no longer matter in the Trump era.
RYAN MCANANY, REGISTERED DEMOCRAT: As long as she's doing what we put her in office to do, that's all I care about. I'd rather have someone eff something than rather eff our country, and I feel that's what's going on now.
LAH (voice-over): But the problem for swing voters, Hill is a moderate who promised normalcy.
DIANE CORLETT, REGISTERED REPUBLICAN: She looks like this all- American girl, you know, and people liked her. She has this appeal about her.
LAH (on camera): Do you think this district flips back to the Republicans?
CORLETT: I hope so. Yes, I -- I think so.
CABRERA: And CNN national correspondent Kyung Lah is joining us now on the phone.
Kyung, why this decision now? What changed today, do you know?
LAH (via telephone): It's a little difficult to know exactly what the turn was. I had been hearing day by day that the sentiment was changing inside the office. This is not an easy decision. This is some -- it is a very close, very tight, and also very young office.
They -- they are idealistic. They are -- they are new to Congress, and they had a lot of dreams, a lot of hopes, especially being led by someone so young and so energetic who had a lot of ideas and -- and was looking at a quite big launching pad for those ideas.
I don't know exactly what changed, but we know that something did. And it's hard to know if it's exactly something that Katie Hill or an outside force.
But in this letter that she -- she has given out on her Twitter feed, it's -- it's that she didn't want to suffer anymore. She was having these private photos of personal moments, she writes, weaponized against me. And she calls it an appalling invasion of my privacy, that it is illegal.
And what I can tell you, Ana, in talking to people who have seen these personal photos, photos that have not yet been released, the fear is that more of them were going to come out. And what do those photos show? That's the big fear.
LAH (via telephone): It's -- this is, you know, a millennial. This is woman who has grown up with cellphones and photos throughout her entire life. Anyone who is a millennial who has grown up with a phone in your hand as part of a cellphone can understand living out loud with an Instagram account.
So I think a lot of this is the fear. Hill says that all of this is pain being inflicted from a divorce. We have reached out to her husband. He has not replied to us.
But what we can say is that this is the end of a very promising congressional career, someone who was able to raise an astounding amount of money running against an incumbent, flipped a district. And now, the politics of this is what happens to that district.
CABRERA: And that -- yes.
LAH (via telephone): It is a swing district. It is a district that Democrats desperately want to hold onto.
CABRERA: And that was where I was going to ask you also. Because we heard from your concerned voters there in the piece, what does happen next to this district? Because, obviously, it was a vulnerable district last go around for Republicans. It became a Democratic district, and now what?
LAH (via telephone): Likely a special election. I -- I need to double-check the exact rules on this, but I believe the -- the declaring date is early December, so this may fall to a special election. But, again, I just -- I want to double-check all of this.
I can tell you that I've spoken to a lot of people who are in this district, and I spoke with them as this news was breaking. There's a lot of disappointment. There are a lot of broken hearts.
This wasn't just a political campaign for a lot of people in this district. This was something that they donated time for, they knocked on doors for, a lot of it driven by the response to Donald Trump. That they felt that this was their way of effecting change door by door, pamphlet by pamphlet, and that Hill represented a new way of government.
So for all of this to take this sort of ugly turn, it's not just disappointing to the congressional office. It's not just painful for this woman who's having these private photos released. But it's also painful for a district that worked so hard to flip this district.
CABRERA: OK. Kyung Lah, thank you so much for calling in, again, as this news is breaking. Congresswoman Katie Hill, a Democrat from California, just announced her resignation from Congress.
We're also following the breaking news that really has global implications, a raid that led to the death of the head of ISIS. Up next, who President Trump decided to thank first. A hint, it wasn't the soldiers. You're live in the CNN NEWSROOM.
CABRERA: The leader of ISIS is dead and on President Trump's watch. Of course, some are going to draw parallels to Osama bin Laden's death under President Obama, including Mr. Trump himself.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: This is the biggest there is. This is the worst ever. Osama bin Laden was very big, but Osama bin Laden became big with the World Trade Center. This is a man who built a whole -- as he would like to call it, a country, a caliphate, and was trying to do it again.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CABRERA: CNN presidential historian Tim Naftali is here with us now.
And, Tim, you know, bin Laden's killing was really a defining moment for President Obama. And it seems that every presidency has maybe a defining or iconic image. For George W. Bush, you know, it was that moment at Ground Zero. With Obama, in the sit room with, you know, his team as the bin Laden raid was going on.
And we have this image from today with President Trump and his team. I think we have that. We'll bring it up. I just -- as we look at this photo, Tim, do you see today as a
defining moment? Is this going to become a defining image when, you know, the history books are written on this presidency?
TIM NAFTALI, CNN PRESIDENTIAL HISTORIAN: Well, President Trump is the Commander-in-Chief. And the killing of al Baghdadi, the neutralization of al Baghdadi, is a big deal. It's something that needed to happen.
ISIS is -- has not disappeared, and therefore, its leadership matters. Whether this becomes the iconic moment for the Trump administration -- I mean, so far, there have been several, Charlottesville is one, there are many so far -- will depend on what happens in Syria.
Jihadi organizations mutate. They morph. In 2006, the United States neutralized al-Zarqawi, bad guy. But he had laid the foundation of what would become ISIS. It wasn't called ISIS then. He was, in a sense, succeeded by al-Baghdadi.
So what we have to see is what happens to the battlefield, what happens to jihadis in Syria, the extent to which Syria becomes some kind of self-governing organization. Because, as you know, we all know, failed states are Petri dishes for terrorism.
So I think some of the answers to that question is what happens next. There's no doubt that, as Commander-in-Chief, he deserves credit for making the decision. I'll tell you one thing, though, about these decisions.
What's one of the cool things about being -- being a historian of presidents? Oftentimes, the story doesn't come out until later, how the decision was made, what were the options the President had before him.
NAFTALI: There's a really rich story now about how President Obama decided -- how he decided to go after bin Laden. I expect we will learn a story about the decision. That story may make this a -- A bigger deal for President Trump or it may not. It may turn out that he wasn't as involved. I don't know the answer yet.
Today, he deserves credit as Commander-in-Chief. Let's not forget the sharp end of the spear, though, were our Special Forces heroes. But he made a call at some point and he deserves credit for that.
CABRERA: And the Special Forces certainly deserve the credit as well. And it was interesting, though, when the President made his big announcement this morning. And near the end of his announcement, he listed the people he wanted to thank. And let me just read you the order of the people or organizations or countries that he thanked.
He -- first, Russia, then Turkey, then Syria, then the Kurds. Number five on the list, intelligence professionals. Number six, the soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines. Number seven, Mark Milley, Joint Chiefs of Staff and professionals, and other agencies. What are your thoughts about that?
NAFTALI: Well, we've -- we ought to give credit to the Commander-in- Chief. I think we all -- we can also talk about style.
I keep thinking about great presidents who -- who -- who have actually reacted well to victory. How George H.W. Bush figured out the best way to respond to the collapse of the Berlin Wall was not to -- to dance on what was left of it.
Today, the President chose a very sharp, aggressive, and, I would say, partisan approach to telling us, to sharing this news, and explaining how he went about making the decision. I would not have listed Russia first.
I understand why. Apparently, they -- to avoid deconfliction. We -- we told them we were going to be flying over their airspace or their part --
CABRERA: Russia denies that -- that conversation even happened.
NAFTALI: Well, we'll find out who is right later, but my point is this. I would not have mentioned them first. As Commander-in-Chief, you mention the American soldiers first, then the intelligence community -- but we know he doesn't like the intelligence community -- and then the Kurds.
And I suspect, for this president, talking about the Kurds is a problem since he has lambasted those people. He has -- he has slandered them and smeared them. They, of course, deserve an enormous amount of our thanks for helping in this raid. I suspect it was hard for him to say it. At least, he mentioned the Kurds.
CABRERA: Well, we always appreciate your perspective on all things presidential. Thank you very much, Tim Naftali.
NAFTALI: You're welcome.
CABRERA: We're back in just a moment.
[19:33:35] ANA CABRERA, CNN HOST: Back to our top story, President Trump announcing the leader of ISIS is dead. At the White House this morning Trump said Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi was killed in a raid by U.S. official forces on his compound in northwest Syria. That's what you are looking at there, what is left of it.
That brings us to our weekend presidential brief with CNN national security analyst Samantha Vinograd, a segment we bring to you every weekend with the most pressing national security issues President Trump will face tomorrow.
Sam, thanks for being here. A U.S. defense official now suggesting to CNN that there could be more operations targeting high value terror operatives in Syria. What kind of works goes into this kind of a raid and the president authorizing it?
SAMANTHA VINOGRAD, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: Well, Ana, this is major accomplishment. But it is the result of years of careful work cultivating intelligence partnerships and intelligence sources on the ground. It doesn't just happen overnight.
When a raid like this goes forward we do have to give the President some credit. He prioritized his mission set. And as you mentioned he personally authorized the raid. Typically before a president makes a decision like that he considers several factors. First, the intel community typically would brief him on the likely success rate. This could include for example imagery of the site in question and assessments of whether al-Baghdadi in this case was actually present at the compound, the potential he could evade capture or killing and whether civilian or collateral damage can be impacted as well.
After than, the military will provide the President with what we called con-ops, concept of operations, a military option for conducting the raid. From there the President can make a cost benefit calculation as to whether the risk to U.S. forces is worth taking in light of the impact of this raid going successfully.
[19:35:19] CABRERA: So now the raid is complete. What would we expect to be happening right now?
VINOGRAD: Well, let's start with the positive. This is an intel opportunity. The President briefed earlier that this raid didn't just result in killing Baghdadi. It also resulted in our forces capturing sensitive information. So our intel community is likely going through any of that information that was collected from the site and any prisoners that were captured.
On the flip side, Ana, we have to keep in mind that the factors that led up to this raid going forward are no longer present and will impact future counterterrorism operation. We have far fewer sources on the ground in Syria that limits our ability to collect intelligence. The Kurds who are particularly linked into this particular raid from what we understand publicly have now had to reprioritize and focus more on deterring Turkey. And so at this point we may have to rely on countries like Turkey and Russia for intelligence on ISIS and they have ulterior motives.
CABRERA: You talked about how the NSC, the national security council would be involve in a runup to a raid like this and what comes after. We also know, as I pivot to talking about impeachment the NSC and many officials from the national security council have been involved in some of these depositions. How damaging could their testimony be when it comes to the impeachment inquiry
VINOGRAD: We have an NSC senior director and director testifying this week. Having been at the NSC for four years, I can tell you that they have first-hand access to the President, his phone calls, his meetings and his communications. At the same time they are currently there, so they may have information on efforts to obstruct Congress or obstruct the investigation. Trump may also have a battle with his exes coming to a head this week.
Former national security advisor John Bolton and his deputy Charles Cupperman (ph) may testify. Bolton and Cupperman (ph) did not just cover Ukraine. Their mandate, frankly, was the world. So they may have more information on other favors President Trump asked from other countries.
Concurrently, John Bolton told the U.S. trade representative to holdup off on giving Ukraine beneficial trade treatment because Trump did want to do anything to help Ukraine as he's seeing these investigations go forward. So we could hear, Ana, about more quid pro quos that the President was focused on into trying to bully Ukraine to fulfill his political objectives.
CABRERA: We will see. And there are so many more questions for us to find answers.
Thank you very much, Sam, as always.
Breaking news, California congresswoman Katie Hill announcing moments ago she is resigning from Congress amid a scandal. We will have the details straight ahead.
[19:41:44] CABRERA: Our breaking news tonight, the founder and leader of ISIS Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi is dead killed in a U.S. raid carried out by U.S. special forces. President Trump went into a great detail about this raid and he said al-Baghdadi, he actually killed himself and three of his young children after detonating a suicide vest.
I want to bring in Democratic congresswoman Pramila Jayapal of Washington state.
Congressman, thanks for being here. As someone who is often critical of the President, does he get your praise today?
REP. PRAMILA JAYAPAL (D), WASHINGTON: Well, I think the first thing I want to say, Ana, is that we are incredibly grateful to our military forces, to the intelligence folks, to the Kurds, everybody who contributed to getting al-Baghdadi off the streets. This is person who has been responsible for thousands of civilian, innocent civilian deaths across the country and displacement of many more, and this is very, very important step.
I would say that what we need is a coordinated and broad and strategic plan for defeating ISIS as a whole. And I wish that the President would also listen as he seems to have done this time and around and I give him credit for that on how to get that coordinated plan taking place in Syria instead of the chaos he has created.
One last thing I would just say on this is we understand that the Republicans knew about this raid and that the Russians knew about this raid. Unfortunately, Democrats in both the House and Senate were not notified. And I think it's, again, a problem with the politicization of national security and the partisanship by which the president is continuing to operate.
CABRERA: I want to talk to about several other topics so I'm going to move onto other breaking news that just happened in the last half- hour.
Congresswoman Katie Hill considered a rising star in your party has just resigned saying she thought it was in the best interest of her constituents. Your reaction.
JAYAPAL: It's a sad day for all of us. You know, if the allegations were true, that would be a serious problem. And, you know, and I think that Katie Hill has decided to do what is best for her personally, for her constituents and for her country so that we can get back to the critical work that is in front of us and so much work that, you know, I think she ran on. And I think it's a tough day for everybody.
CABRERA: Much of the work involves the impeachment inquiry for Democrats right now, something you have supported since Mueller testified about his findings and the Russia investigation. I know a judge gave Democrats a big victory on Friday by giving Congress now access to Mueller's grand jury documents. Do you think the Mueller probe should be a part of this impeachment inquiry?
JAYAPAL: Well, Ana, as you know the way this works is around any impeachment articles that got drafted would be around the high crime and misdemeanor. So it would be abuse of power, it would be obstruction of congress, those kinds of things.
I think Ukraine should still be front and center because we have a situation unfolding right in front of us where the American people see how the President has abused the power of the White House, asked a foreign ally to dig up dirt on a political rival and interfere in the election. And withheld millions -- hundreds of millions of dollars that Congress authorized for Ukraine.
All of this a betrayal of national security, our values and our constitution. There are other pieces that are the same pattern that we have seen unfolding with Ukraine that were contained within the Mueller report. And so you may see that the articles if they were drafted would be around these crimes of obstruction that have shown themselves in multiple other places. But I think Ukraine will still take a big front and center role because we have the most important witness testify early onto the American people, and that was the president of the United States admitting what he had done and actually bragging about it. And that is very, very unfortunate.
[19:45:55] CABRERA: But if you fold in stuff from Mueller's report, could that muddy the waters, especially for Americans who didn't support the impeachment inquiry before the Ukraine allegations came out?
JAYAPAL: Well, one of the things that would be interesting to see is with the release of the grand jury material based on what the judge ruled on Friday. There may be even more information here not just within the redacted portions of the Mueller report but also in the underlying testimony that again show the same patterns and perhaps even connect back to Ukraine.
So I think we don't know exactly what we have. I think we do have to be careful this isn't, you know, too broad and too sprawling. I think we have very important information in front of us. But let's look at Ukraine as a pattern that the President has repeatedly engaged in which is a betrayal of our national security, of our constitution and a complete lack of any respect for at least the coequal branches of government that we have.
CABRERA: You served on the Judiciary Committee, it's not one of the three committees currently going through these depositions and hearing from all of these officials. And your congressman Republican counterpart Matt Gaetz serves on the Judiciary Committee as well. And he and others have expressed frustration and anger on not being allowed access to currently what is happening in this impeachment inquiry. Do you share that same frustration?
JAYAPAL: I don't. And I would just tell you in that deposition with Bill Taylor, for example, I think there were 72 members of Congress in that room. That's almost a quarter of the entire United States House of Representatives. And Republicans were absolutely represented there. They had ample time to ask questions. All of those depositions will be transcribed and released to public. And there will be a public process here but I think this is entirely appropriate. And any time the Republicans have to focus just on process and not on content, I think they are losing the battle.
CABRERA: Quickly, if you will, when? When will the public part of the process come into play?
JAYAPAL: I think it will be very soon. I mean, I think there are still a few more loose ends to tie up here. I know the depositions have to be approved by the witnesses. That's part of what's taking some time.. And then I think we will see public hearings shortly. I can't give you a time line for that, but I expect that we will move quickly, and we have been moving quickly on all of this.
CABRERA: Congresswoman Jayapal, thank you very much. And happy (INAUDIBLE).
JAYAPAL: Thank you Ana. Happy (INAUDIBLE) to you too.
CABRERA: Thank you. From the Bataclan theater in Paris to San Bernardino the horrors of ISIS have been seen around the globe. Up next the brutality of Baghdadi.
You are live in the CNN NEWSROOM.
[19:52:00] CABRERA: With the news today that ISIS leader Abu Bakr al- Baghdadi is dead, this seems an appropriate time to remember the horror of al-Baghdadi unleashed on the world.
CNN's Robyn Cornow looks back at the pain this man's leadership inflicted from Paris to San Bernardino to Brussels and beyond. (BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)
ROBYN CORNOW, CNN ANCHOR, CNN INTERNATIONAL (voice-over): The sheer brutality that Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi exported is still difficult to comprehend.
This is the after math of the ISIS terror attack if Paris in 2015. One hundred thirty people were killed, 90 of them at the concert hall. Months later Brussels airport was attacked. In a deluge of horror so too was the Istanbul airport.
Then France was again struck. This time in Nice during a (INAUDIBLE) celebration. A large truck driven by a man inspired by ISIS plowed through dozens of people on a seaside promenade.
The scope of Baghdadi's influence is also being felt from the Philippines to Jordan to Egypt and Bangladesh and beyond. In the U.S., the attack in San Bernardino and the massacre at the Pulse Night club in Orlando were all inspired by ISIS. And Baghdadi's call to kill. The methods ISIS used to cause maximum terror were amplified by social media.
For Baghdadi, it was not enough to kill, to behead, to crucify. He tried to make sure as many people as possible saw ISIS as evil acts. Horrifying videos made sure the terror was replayed again and again. He snatched western hostages, journalists, aide workers and flaunted them and their deaths. Often by beheading on camera. And he killed thousands of people at home in the Middle East.
United Nations determined ISIS actions against Jihadis and other minority groups in Iraq and Syria constituted genocide. Women in particular were targeted. And used as sex slaves brutalized by rape and torture.
He didn't just destroy lives across world nut also precious wounds and relics of previous civilizations. His brand of violence was also carefully nurtured, taught and exported. Baghdadi might be dead but the violence and hate is not.
[19:58:19] CABRERA: Right now California is under a statewide fire emergency as high winds some hitting 80 miles per hour are gobbling up land, destroying homes and forcing thousands to flee in both the north and south parts of the state.
These pictures from north of San Francisco where two fires broke out this morning shutting down interstate 80 until a short time ago. Some evacuation orders are being lifted. (INAUDIBLE), the city mayor says the fire there is now 80 percent contained.
Some good news there. But crews are also fighting the Kinkade fire which has already consumed 30,000 acres and torched dozens of buildings. Keep in mind, too, this is California's wine country. The states largest utility PG&E has cut power to a million people. Thousands in northern California remain under evacuation orders tonight including two hospitals in Santa Rosa. Getting out has dangers. We have been getting new video showing flames and encroaching on roads and highways. Scaring people as they try to escape the fast moving flames.
Former congressman John Conyers has died. His son confirms to CNN. The long time Michigan democrat passed away in his sleep. Conyers represented the Detroit area for five decades before he resigned in 2017. He was also a founding member of the congressional black caucus. John Conyers was 90 years old.
Thanks so much nor joining us this weekend. I'm Ana Cabrera in New York. Great to have you with us. I wish you a healthy and happy week.
Up next, join Erin Burnett for a look at the witnesses, the testimony and the latest evidence. "The White House in crisis: the impeachment inquiry" starts right now.