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Morales Arrives in Mexico, Accepts Asylum; U.K. Labour Party Hit by Cyber Attack Ahead of Election; Disney's New Streaming Service Crashes on Day 1. Aired 1-2a ET

Aired November 13, 2019 - 01:00   ET



JOHN VAUSE, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: -- Juggernaut blew it. The technical problems and thousands of unhappy subscribers.

We're just hours away now from what could be must-see T.V., public testimony in the impeachment inquiry of President Donald Trump. With the proceedings aired on the broadcast networks as well as cable, Democrats will have a national audience to build a case of bribery and extortion against the president for withholding military aid to Ukraine in exchange for investigations of a political rival.

Two career diplomats will appear first detailing their concerns about the administration's policies. And Republicans have also been fine- tuning their defense. CNN's Jessica Schneider begins our coverage.


JESSICA SCHNEIDER, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Tonight, Republicans are laying out their strategy to push back and defend President Trump ahead of the upcoming high stakes impeachment hearings. CNN has obtained the internal memo that marks the most centralized and detailed effort yet by Republicans to counter the Democrat's argument for impeachment, hitting on four central defenses.

First, that the July 25th call between President Trump and President Zelensky of Ukraine shows no conditionality or evidence of pressure. It's a point the President has repeatedly pushed.

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Because I have a perfect phone call. I made a perfect call. Not a good call, a perfect call.

SCHNEIDER: But the rough transcript released by the White House clearly shows Zelensky asking for aid and Trump responding, "I would like you to do us a favor though." The second Republican point stresses President Zelensky and President Trump have both said there was no pressure on the call.

But before Zelensky took office, a source familiar told CNN that the Ukrainian president and his aides had a meeting on how to handle the Trump request to open the investigations. The third and fourth Republican points state, the Ukrainian government was not aware of the hold on U.S. assistance during the July 25th call, and the hold on that military assistance was lifted on September 11th.

But the Ukrainians were aware that they wouldn't receive the White House meeting they wanted without the announcement of investigations. And aid only flowed after the White House faced criticism from Republican lawmakers. With just hours before the public hearing, Republicans are attacking one of tomorrow's key witnesses, the top diplomat to Ukraine, Bill Taylor.

REP. LEE ZELDIN (R-NY): They're relying on people like Bill Taylor as a star witness who is going to tell us something that is third or fourth hand information.

SCHNEIDER: In closed-door testimony, Taylor revealed he was told that Ukraine would not receive military money until officials announced the investigations the President wanted. But Taylor admitted he never spoke directly with the president, a point Republicans have seized upon.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He said what he heard. Hearsay is not admissible.

SCHNEIDER: But Democrats say they're just trying to muddy the waters.

REP. GREGORY MEEKS (D-NY): Basically, I look at those defenses, avoid the facts, avoid the facts, avoid the facts. That's basically what it is. The facts are, the President abused his power. And this is coming from the mouth of patriotic diplomats and their authority.

SCHNEIDER: The first set of public testimony will feature Bill Taylor, as well as George Kent. He's the State Department's lead career official focused on Ukraine. And it will all unfold with Democrats and Republicans each getting 45 minutes for questioning off the bat. And that questioning will actually be led by skilled staffers from each side who have been doing the closed-door questioning,

Plus, the 12 Democrats and the eight Republican members will each get five minutes for questioning of their own. Jessica Schneider, CNN, Washington.


VAUSE: David Katz is a former Assistant U.S. Attorney in Los Angeles. So we'll head to him live in L.A. once again. David, thanks for sticking around. I want to get to these four key points in that Republican plan which says, believe they can undermine this mountain of evidence. Let's just quickly go through the four points. I get your take on each one as we do it.

OK, the first point is that the July 25 phone call was not conditional. All those evidence -- it shows no conditionality rather, or evidence of pressure. OK, that has actually been disproved, right? And this scandal is about more than just that phone call.

DAVID KATZ, FORMER ASSISTANT U.S. ATTORNEY: It's about much more than the phone call. And on the phone call, there was a condition because Trump says, "I want a favor though." In addition to that, it was part of things that happened before and things that happened after. So that's a nonstarter.

VAUSE: OK. The two presidents agree, no pressure. This is between Zelensky and Trump. That seems asinine.

That is asinine. Of course, Trump is going to say that there was no pressure. The person to whom pressure was being applied, the incoming Ukrainian president, he's between a rock in a hard place. He desperately needs U.S. military aid to fend off Russia. So what's he going to say, yes, he twisted my arm?

VAUSE: Exactly. OK, number three, the Ukraine government was not aware of military aid was being held. Not true.


KATZ: That's not -- no, that's not true. That's not true either. First of all, it was aid that they needed to pay their soldiers and to use for the Javelins and they weren't getting it. They also knew that they weren't getting a meeting at the White House. And they were also told you're not going to get it by Giuliani and by Ambassador Sondland until you come up with that private political favor for Trump.

VAUSE: Last one, they have Ukraine eventually received the military aid anyway. So what, no harm no foul? You know, there is an element of truth on that, but it's more a question of when the aid was released.

KATZ: Well, first of all, the attempt to bribe and the attempt to extort are just as bad legally and in terms of impeachment. But on top of that, the only reason it was released in mid-September was because the senators got wind of it, people got wind of the whistleblower coming forward. And so the cat was out of the bag. So it's like let the cat run at that point. And you can make that argument later on that oh, well, the cat got out of the bag.

VAUSE: Yes. OK, let's move on because there's also another defense strategy, it's question the credibility of the witness and the testimony like this tweet earlier from Donald Trump. "Why is such a focus put on second and third-hand witnesses, many of whom never- Trumpers or his lawyers are never-Trumpers, when all you have to do is read the phone called transcript with the Ukrainian president and see firsthand."

You know, Bill Taylor never actually spoke directly with the President. We just heard Republicans say that hearsay. But when his statements are cooperated by a whole -- corroborated by a whole bunch of other evidence, is it admissible?

KATZ: Well, first of all, it's not hearsay, because it's an admission by the person who's under investigation. It's an admission by Trump. This whole idea that second or third hearsay, John, is completely false, just like the rest of these thin weak defenses.

First of all, we have the rough notes of the -- of the call. And we see that Trump is talking on that call. Then we have Colonel Vindman who says not only do we have the notes of that call, but I witness that call along with other people. I remember it clearly. It's as bad as it looks in the rough notes, but it's even worse.

There were references to Biden and to things that Trump wanted politically for himself personally, not for the nation's interest that Trump was also asking for it. Apparently, the ellipses aren't just (INAUDIBLE), the ellipses are things of substance that were taken out of there. And the reason that Trump released that a note is because the notes are not nearly as bad as the conversation.

Then you ask yourself, how could Trump have been personally not been involved? He's going to argue that he was disengaged? Who held up the money? They have a witness that budget who says that Trump personally held up the money for Ukraine so that he could work this shakedown on the Ukrainians.

On top of that, who put it on a secret server? Other people have the power to put something on a secret server like these rough notes so they could hide it. Who did all of these things? Our disengaged President who it turns out has Mulvaney running around doing things that Trump doesn't want.

VAUSE: There is a big wider question here about you know, just how many people are actually implicated in all this, but we have no time for that. And it just, you know, they're looking at the President right now, maybe we'll get that another day. But there is also, you know, this hearsay argument ends up morphing into something like this. Listen to this.


REP. STEVE SCALISE (R-LA): Well, the bottom line is the only two people that are at the heart of this are President Trump and President Zelensky, and we've already seen the transcripts. So what other people think about a conversation is really secondary to the fact that the two men that were participating in the conversation both said it was a good call.


VAUSE: OK. So let me put it this way. So two men talking on the phone actively plan to carry out mass murder, discuss details, times, places, and methods. A dozen or so people could be listening, but those dozen people, you know, what they believe is irrelevant as long as the two men at the center of the call say, all good, nothing to see here? Is that the argument? Is that what they're saying?

KATZ: John, you could never prosecute the mafia. You could never prosecute shakedowns, bribery, extortion. The thing that's remarkable about Trump is that he's not very careful to not say things that aren't damaging. Most people follow advice, most people are very circumspect.

You know, we've never had a president actually removed from office because they follow advice. Nixon resigned and Nixon ended up saying some really stupid things on a tape, and the tape came out. And now this tape has come out. Somehow Trump believed because he's an egomaniac that it was going to

help him. And the rough notes hurt him. Vindman, the colonel, hurts him. He's going to come in his uniform. And the whole sequence of events, I think is really going to play very poorly with the Republican Senators and with the public once it's televised, you know.

The Republicans are going to try to go down a lot of rabbit holes. But I think the nickname of shift after this is over is no shift. In other words, don't shift your way out of it. So they're going to try to shift the topic to other things. Don't shift the topic shift. I think that's what people will see.

VAUSE: Let's finish up with this. Assume the president is impeached for using his office to seek election help from a foreign government, right? He then says trial in the Republican-held Senate and is not removed from office. Does that set a precedent? Are all future presidents are allowed to call their favorite dictator or bully their much smaller, weaker country and do what this President has admitted to?


KATZ: Well, let's hope that the Republican senators take a longer view of things. You know, we fought a war so that we didn't have a king. We made a lot of sacrifices in this country, decade after decade. You look at our military budget, you look at the people who lost their lives, in foreign wars. What? I mean, for liberty, to save Democracy. It sounds corny, but it's true. And people died for it.

And the idea that people are going to look back and say, the President can get away with all of this -- and you know, it'll be two or three presidents down the road. It'll be a Democrat who will be doing things that the Republicans just abhor. And they're going to ruin the day that they establish this principle.

If it's true that President Trump can get away with this, if he could do it with impunity, you know, all these other countries in the world, they have a great constitution, they have great laws, but they have tyrants who roll with impunity, and they officiate all the laws. We don't have that in America. This is the Republican senators chance, really to save the Republic. And I think that they'll hear the bell. I think that they're -- I'm an optimist, John.

VAUSE: I'm glad because we need optimists. David, thank you. Much appreciated you staying around for the second hour. Thank you.

KATZ: Great to be with you and stay tuned again.

VAUSE: I'll get you to read the promo. Maybe not. See you soon, David. And for the ones at home, tune in to CNN Wednesday live coverage for the entire day of the House impeachment hearings. It'll be starting at 8:00 a.m. New York time, that's 1:00 p.m. in London. You'll see it on here with our special coverage that is on CNN.

Well, the Israelis launched airstrikes on Tuesday. The militants in Gaza five rockets, and Indian and Palestinian health officials say 10 people are dead. Among them, this man who Israel says was plotting rocket attacks Islamic Jihad's Baha Abu Al Ata. And this was a scene in Gaza City after his death.

Islamic Jihad vowed to retaliate in Israel reports around 200 rockets were fired from Gaza. Many were intercepted, but this one wasn't.

During the second intifada, Israel was hit by a wave of suicide bombings. Palestinian militants with high powered explosives strapped to their bodies. Time and time again, they crossed into Israel from the West Bank in Gaza, killing more than 1,000 Israeli civilians over five years.

Part of Israel's response was the construction of a security barrier along the West Bank. And then came a high tech security fence around Gaza, dramatically reducing the number of suicide bombers. And through the Newton's third law that for every action, there is an opposite reaction, in 2007, the military group Hamas took power in Gaza and focus on not just building rockets but improving their range and reliability.

The first custom rocket was fired by Hamas in 2001. At the time it was more like a glorified fireworks with a range of less than two miles. But Six years later came the custom two ranged four and a half miles. The custom three A few years after that ranged just over six miles, and the custom for almost 10 miles range.

Keep in mind Israel is a tiny country. Gaza to Tel Aviv, 40 miles. Gaza to Jerusalem, 60 miles. In March this year, the Israeli military said a house in Tel Aviv which was hit by a Palestinian missile had a range of 75 miles. And on Tuesday, a Palestinian made missile five from Gaza reportedly landed north of Tel Aviv.

And Palestinian said made slow but steady improvements to their arsenal of rockets and missiles despite Gaza being under an Israeli blockade all but sealed off from the rest of the world. Ian Williams is the Deputy Director of the Missile Defense Project at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. It's a Washington based think tank. And he is joining us now. So Ian, thank you for being with us.


VAUSE: OK, so how has Hamas and you know, the other militant groups in Gaza like Islamic Jihad be able to make this slow, steady improvement? There has to be a certain level of skill involved here as well. You know, it's so easy to build a missile even one as basic these, right?

WILLIAMS: Right. I mean, there's a lot of skill, a lot of determination for sure. But, you know, I don't think you can undercount the fact that they haven't getting a lot of support from outside actors, particularly Iran. You know, despite the blockade, despite Gaza being very isolated, they are still able to get a lot of some of the more complex manufactured components to these weapons that are built in -- that are built-in Iran, smuggled in piece by piece, and then assembled in Gaza.

And we see this, you know, Iran doing this not just in Gaza, but in Lebanon, with Hezbollah, in Yemen, for example, with the Houthi forces there. So they become very good at getting this stuff through the net.


VAUSE: And the missiles that we're talking about here, these homemade ones, if you'd like, as opposed to, you know, maybe the gradual Katyusha rockets, which are smuggled in. The Hamas homemade ones are pretty basic. They're unguided, at times they're unreliable. In terms of armed conflict, are they more effective as a weapon of terror, as opposed to a weapon of war? Fear versus body count?

WILLIAMS: Right. I mean, they're not going to be effective military weapons, right, which require you to have some level of accuracy to be able to hit the target you're going for. The kind of Qassam rockets, the unguided rockets are really terror weapons. They're meant -- in some cases, not even to -- I think with the, you know, with the advent of Iron Dome, I don't think that there's much hope to even get these -- a lot of these rockets through. It's just about getting the air race sirens blaring, and to get people kind of afraid in their shelters. You know, one interesting statistic that I read recently from the 2014 Gaza conflict was that, most of the injuries of Israeli citizens were not actually from the rockets, but from people falling on their way to the bombshell -- on the way to the bomb shelters, so ...

VAUSE: You know, it is interesting, there's also the -- simply the cost of these missiles, are reportedly just a few hundred dollars each to build, which again, is a huge strategic advantage when you consider that every time one is shot down by the Iron Dome defense system, it costs Israel tens of thousands of dollars. And at times the Palestinians have, you know, able to overwhelm the Iron Dome, just with sheer numbers of rockets.

WILLIAMS: Well, I mean, I think -- I don't know if the Iron Dome has been actually overwhelmed by these -- by these rockets. Because they're so inaccurate, you know, one of the strengths of the Iron Dome system is it's able to track these rockets as they're coming in and be able to discern which ones are actually going to hit in a civilian area, and which ones are just going to land somewhere in the desert. And they only engage those that are actually a threat. And that's, you know, only approximately about 20 to 25 percent of the rockets fired, they actually have to engage. And if you look at this current, you know, the numbers of intercepts that the -- that Israel is claiming right now is about 50 or so rockets intercepted out of 200, which tracks very closely with the engagement rate of past conflicts, which kind of tells me that they're not making much improvement of their accuracy of the missiles.

VAUSE: Is there any clear idea of not just the number but also the range of the rockets which have been stockpiled in Gaza? Because, it seems as there's a plenty of short-range missiles which can go maybe within six miles and 10 miles. Having those longer range ones, where they have -- which can reach Tel Aviv and beyond?

WILLIAMS: Yes, well, those missiles are very much sourced, at least particularly the (INAUDIBLE) component parts are sourced outside of Gaza, probably smuggled in from Iran, may be assembled in Gaza, but smuggled in by the Iranians. You know, I found it interesting that they have actually been hit, you know, firing some rockets as far as Tel Aviv in this particular conflict. The ongoing right now, which kind of says that they are actually bringing out some of their bigger, heavier stuff for this particular fight, which, you know, could indicate that it's going to go on for a long time if they're -- if they're serious. Oftentimes, you'll see a -- kind of a symbolic response to an Israeli strike where they'll fire back a handful of very short range kind of expendable rockets. The fact that they're using some of their rare assets, some of their bigger stuff which they don't have as many, suggests that they are kind of escalating or trying to do as much damage as they can.

VAUSE: They're certainly making a statement when those missiles -- when those sirens are heard in Tel Aviv and those missiles are landing just north of, you know, the main city there. And Ian, we are out of time but thank you very much for being with us. We appreciate your analysis.

WILLIAMS: Thank you having me.

VAUSE: Up next, with dozens of bushfires raging out of control in Australia, there are fears the worst might be still to come. Also, Bolivia's former president thanks Mexico's leader for granting asylum and saving his life. Details later this hour.



PEDRAM JAVAHERI, CNN INTERNATIONAL METEOROLOGIST: And the coldest air in about six to seven months' worth of time across portions of the U.S., working its way across the region, and notice, not only do we have frigid air in place, some snow showers into the northern tier of the United States, and certainly some travel disruptions to be had, and wind chills subfreezing across a lot of these areas along the Gulf Coast. Coldest for them in months as well across this region.

And you notice the front responsible for all of this now well , but it is kind of setting the stage for another one to begin to dive in. This particular one certainly has cold air in store, but it is more directed into the Northeastern United States, where temperatures already cooling off more significantly than any time this year, in the past few months at least. And notice yesterday's highs, 14 degrees, dropping down to one in New York City. In Boston, it goes from seven down to one. And the next shot of cold air kind of shows you that area of the northeast where additional shots of arctic air are expected.

So, here we go, Chicago gradual warming trend. Minneapolis much the same. While around the northeast, it is a cooling trend. And notice in Chicago, we do have eventually climb up to about six degrees by this time next week. Here's the high temperature trend in Dallas, 11 degrees. In Los Angeles, we'll take a warm afternoon, up to 23. And Mexico City slightly cooler at 22. Belize City around 28, and a few showers possible around Chihuahua. In association with the disturbance there in Belize City, again, a few showers possible over the next couple of days.


VAUSE: Welcome back, everybody. Another day of chaos and unrest in Hong Kong. It seems some of the worst violence in months has done little to deter pro-Democracy demonstrators. Many were facing off with police at the Chinese University of Hong Kong. It all began on Tuesday. Police firing tear gas, protesters throwing bricks and petrol bombs. Students were still on campus just a few hours ago. Authorities have been trying to clear barricades in the central part of the city, as well. This all comes after a police officer shot a protester on Monday, and a man who confronted the demonstrators was set on fire.

Well, the toughest wildfire season in Australia is not over yet. That warning is coming from fire officials. There are 85 active fires in New South Wales as of Tuesday evening with hot weather on the way. The flames reached the outer suburbs of Sydney. Police believe some fires may have been deliberately lit. The death toll in New South Wales stands at three, though, killed over the weekend, official say nobody is unaccounted for at this stage.

Australian mega actor Russell Crowe says his house was impacted by the bushfires, but his family is safe, staying with friends. The Oscar winner tweeted, "Lost a couple of buildings, but overall very lucky so far. Chapel roof scorched. Deepest thanks to everyone on the ground.

Let's go to Pedram Javaheri at the CNN Weather Center with more on the forecast. That's the thing about fires, they don't care who you are.


JAVAHERI: Yes, you know, that certainly impacts a lot of people. And you know, it doesn't matter who you are, as you said. The conditions across this region now, John, have begun to improve in the past couple of hours. This is certainly good news for a lot of people in this region.


But as you noted, quite a bit of fire activity still in place. So, when you take a look at the satellite imagery, the latest satellite imagery from space, really an incredible perspective to see what's happening here because, of course, you see the smoke plum right here, and kind of look for the milky or hazy gray coloration across this region. And you begin to pick out all of the smoke that has kind of worked its way downstream and embedded within the clouds there. But if you look carefully enough, you do see some of the haze kind of right across the southern region there of New Zealand with this particular area of wind that we've seen recently move across the area.

But here we go, today, we had a catastrophic level alert in place for 19 different spot fires and fires from Sydney all the way northward towards Coffs Harbour. At this hour that has dropped to zero. So, that is the level five or the highest level of concern, but in total, still some 100 plus fires to be had between the two states from the north to the south. So, the concern remains very high here, as the winds finally died down. Temperatures, though, expected to warm up. And you notice this, upper 20s as far as the winds around Port Macquarie, Coffs Harbour at 31 kilometers per hour, Brisbane peaking right now at 51 kilometers per hour, but we expect the winds once the front exits within the next few hours here to die down to as little as maybe 10 or 15 kilometers per hour.

So, this would be the quietest weather pattern for firefighter activity here in recent days. And, of course, when you take a look at how things have played out across a region of Sydney, Hunter, Illawarra, and Shoalhaven, this is the region that were most severely impacted by 24 hours ago. You fast forward to the current perspective, you begin to see at least a little sign of hope here as the levels dropping down to very high and in some cases just extreme versus catastrophic. In the end, the concern is there is an additional warming trend in store in the immediate forecast, but, John, looking long term into, say, potentially Saturday night and to Sunday, our best bet of at least some rainfall in the forecast. Unfortunately, as often is the case, the storms do come in with some winds. So, really going to be splitting hairs here to see if we get more rain than wind because, of course, even that little bit of rain could be problematic if it accompanies with additional winded forecasts.

VAUSE: Yes, lightning, too, all the -- all the other issues that come with that. OK, Pedram, thank you for the update.

JAVAHERI: Thank you.

VAUSE: We'll take a break. When we come back, Bolivia has a new leader, Jeanine Anez is wearing the presidential sash, a new self- declared president, but the country's still remains in turmoil. More details in a moment.



VAUSE: Thank you for staying with us. You're watching CNN NEWSROOM.

I'm John Vause with the headlines this hour.

The start of public hearings in the Trump impeachment inquiry, just hours away now, and two career diplomats will appear first. Bill Taylor has said his understanding was military aid to Ukraine would not be released unless the Ukrainian leader announced investigations into President Trump's political rival Joe Biden.

Palestinian officials say at least 10 people have been killed by Israeli air strikes Tuesday in Gaza. Among the dead is a senior Islamic jihad member Baha Abu al-Ata. Militants responded with a barrage of rocket fire, dozens were shut down by Israel's Iron Dome anti-missile system. Israel also carried out more air strikes on the Gaza strip.

Officials in Australia are warning the worst bushfire season in decades is not done yet. 85 active fires are burning across New South Wales as of Tuesday evening. The flames reached the outer suburbs of. And police (ph) believe some fires may have been deliberately lit. More hot weather is expected in the days ahead.

Bolivia has a new leader. Jeanine Anez, the second vice president of the senate, claims she is next in line for leadership, and declared herself president, complete with a sash of office. The job became available when the former president Evo Morales resigned on Sunday amid voter fraud allegations and widespread nationwide protests. He fled to Mexico where he was granted political asylum.

CNN's Matt Rivers has the details.


MATT RIVERS, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Mexico City officially has one new resident as of Tuesday. And that will be former Bolivian President Evo Morales. He arrived here in the capital of Mexico shortly before mid-day on Tuesday where he officially claimed political asylum.

This was after the Mexican government invited him to claim asylum here, after the former president abruptly resigned from his position in Bolivia on Sunday.

The Mexican government sent a plane down to Bolivia to pick up the former president. And after some initial uncertainty, which included being denied the right to fly back to Mexico through Peruvian airspace, the plane eventually made it here and deposited the former Bolivian president.

And if you had any notion that the former president was going to simply stop commenting on Bolivian politics or just go quietly into the night well, that is definitely not true. As soon as he got off the plane, he was met by a throng of reporters, whom he addressed briefly. And here's a little bit of what he had to say.

EVO MORALES, FORMER BOLIVIAN PRESIDENT (through translator): We are here safe. Thanks to Mexico and it's authorities. But I also want to tell you, sisters and brothers, as long as I am alive, we'll continue in politics.

As long as I am alive the fight continues. And we are sure that the people of the world have the right to liberate themselves.

RIVERS: So what Morales is essentially saying there is that he is going to maintain an active voice in Bolivian politics. And he has the means to communicate with his myriad supporters that remain in Bolivia. He's very active on his Twitter feed as we saw during his trip, even here in Mexico and you can expect that that is going to continue into the future.

And that is just one of the challenges now facing the interim government that has been set up in Bolivia. How will Morales affect Bolivian politics over the next couple of months? There are already a lot of challenges not the least of which will be if and when new elections are set up in Bolivia.

The fact that there are lots of protest that remain in La Paz and other parts of the country. There still remains so much uncertainty in Bolivia. And that is before you consider that Morales could whip up his supporters, continue to foment unrest. Will his supporters challenge the legitimacy of any future elections that are set up in the near term?

These are all open questions that we simply don't know the answers to yet. We know that it's going to be uncertain times for a while in Bolivian, but what we do know for sure is that at, least right now, it's most famous resident arguably an Evo Morales, well, he no longer is there and he will be a resident of Mexico, at least for the foreseeable future as someone who has sought political asylum here in the country's capital.

[01:35:01] Matt Rivers, CNN -- in Mexico City.


VAUSE: U.K.'s main opposition party says there has been an attempted cyber attack just weeks before a general election. The attempt failed, the Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn says he is confident no data from the party was actually breached in the attack.


JEREMY CORBYN, BRITISH LABOUR PARTY LEADER: So far as we're aware, none of our information was downloaded and the attack was actually repulsed because we have an effective inhouse developed system by people within our party.

But if this is a sign of things to come in this election, I feel very nervous about it all because a cyber attack against a political party in an election is suspicious, and something I was very worried about.


VAUSE: The U.K.'s National Cyber Security Center says it might be impossible to ever find out who did it.

Still to come -- faith, trust, and pixie dust was not enough on Tuesday for Disney and the launch of its new streaming service. Thousands of subscribers were greeted by "Wreck-it Ralph" but the Internet wasn't broken, just Disney Plus.


VAUSE: Disney has launched its much-anticipated streaming service Disney Plus. But amid all the hype and anticipation, the House of Mouse proved the bigger they are the harder they fall. The streaming service opened its vault (ph) on the studio's incredible library but the launch came with a crash.

For thousands of eager subscribers, movies like "Frozen" were actually frozen. TV shows like "Spin and Marty" were just a spinning wheel of misfortune and wouldn't play.

Disney's not known for its corporate sense of humor but appropriately perhaps, many were greeted with an error message from "Wreck-it Ralph Breaks the Internet". Despite the embarrassment the studio tried to put on its best spin.

Here is their statement. "The consumer demand for Disney Plus has exceeded our high expectations. We are pleased by this incredible response and are working to quickly resolve the current user issue. We appreciate your patience. Thank you, come again."

Joining me now from Los Angeles, CNN media critic Brian Lowry.

You know, a big deal of (INAUDIBLE) but not while you're on a (ph) launch, right?

BRIAN LOWRY, CNN MEDIA CRITIC: No. I mean I think they put the best possible spin they could on it, which is basically having too many people want to get on your site is a high class problem.

VAUSE: Yes. I just want to look (ph) at in terms of outages -- I was thinking from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. we look at this, from the Website down detector, and here are some of the comments that -- some of the complaints that viewers wrote.

"Pretty frustrated with this."

"Very disappointed."

Fix it someone."

"I'm so bummed."

"This is pretty bad."

Disney, big as they are, shouldn't have had as big of an issue as this."

Ok. So firstly I mean is it surprising that Disney bungled this and how quickly can they turn this minus back into a plus?

LOWRY: Well, I think they turned it around. I mean they can turn it around pretty quickly. What we are talking about in terms of the streaming wars as everyone is calling them is really a marathon and not a sprint.


LOWRY: And the long term question is going to be, how many people can Disney get to sign up over the next one, two, three, four, five years? That is really what they are projecting out.

So one day of glitches puts a little bit of a damper on it. It is fun for everybody to joke about it.

I think my favorite line was Stephen Colbert tweeted that his favorite show on Disney Plus was buffering.

But, you know, once you get past that, the question is going to be, how many people are going to want to subscribe, and they've got a lot of chips to play on that.

VAUSE: Let's get to that. I think Disney Plus turns out in a couple of ways -- firstly, its content. CNN's Frank Pallotta writes this. "The platform is not revolutionary, basically Netflix but stuff with Disney films and TV shows. Yet how the company has repackaged its trove of beloved content for the service makes it a worthy companion to the other services in the marketplace."

Also, in terms of price, here's (INAUDIBLE) from the "New York Times". Listen to this.


FRANK PALLOTTA, CNN MEDIA REPORTER: The amount of content is less important, I think at the moment, than the price they're charging, which is $7, which is cheap, less than Netflix, way less than HBO. That seems to be really designed to get people into Disney Plus pretty quickly.


VAUSE: We will get the actual content in a moment, but in terms of cost, plus the size of a library, lowest price, so who gets muscled out by all of this? Who bleeds the most? And, you know, does Disney have pockets deep enough to keep this going?--

LOWRY: Well, I think everybody -- I mean Disney has very, very deep pockets, as do some of these other big players getting into it, Apple among them.

The question is -- is there enough room for everybody, and nobody really knows yet. Disney has an enormous advantage in that it not only setting aside what it costs, it has properties that people have demonstrably proven they will pay for.

So, if you have "Star Wars", if you have the Marvel titles, if you have the Pixar movies -- those are really the marquee brands in the entertainment industry right now. And there are other studios and other companies that have big titles to throw at it as well. But I don't think anybody really has quite the array of products that Disney has, that people have these enormous fan bases built into them.

VAUSE: As you look at that library, you know the product goes all the way back to "Steamboat Willy". Here's a reminder.



VAUSE: Ok. So, you know, the first cartoon featuring Mickey Mouse, to the very latest TV over there called "The Mandalorian". Here's a preview.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The Mandalorians dropped (ph) by. They are waiting for you.

Yes. Good.


VAUSE: Yes. And the latest way to milk the "Star Wars" franchise in the form of a live action episodic. Is it too much to choose from?

LOWRY: I don't think that is ever a problem. I mean Netflix has, you know -- volume is a big part of Netflix's model. And with these streaming services, in the same way that something like HBO has found this out over the years.

You don't expect a lot of people necessarily to watch any one thing at once, but you want a potpourri of stuff that they can go and choose what they want. And if you have a little "Star Wars" here and a little animation for the kids there, that is how you put together a big subscriber base.

VAUSE: You know, 82 years ago Walt Disney is the man, bet the farm on an animated movie called "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs". Here is a very quick cut clip from the documentary "American Experience" on PBS.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He had no idea how the audience was going to respond.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Walt -- I think you are due to do all that you're (ph) talking tonight. Tell us a little bit about this picture, will you?

WALT DISNEY, FOUNDER OF THE WALT DISNEY COMPANY: Well, it's been a lot of fun making it. We're very happened that it's been given this big premiere here tonight. All these people are turning out to take a look at it. I hope they are not too disappointed.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, I'm sure they won't be.


VAUSE: You know, Walt Disney gambled on his vision of the future, it turned out to be bright. Is this a similar gamble by Disney? LOWRY: I think this is even a bigger gamble in a lot of ways. I

think you're seeing the entire entertainment industry really betting that the future is in digital consumption. And in the process, they are risking a number of established businesses, including their TV networks, their cable distribution systems.

And even their theatrical movie businesses when something like "The Mandalorian" or the upcoming "Star Wars: Obi Wan Kenobi" series could easily have been done as feature films and instead they are being done as limited series for streaming.


LOWRY: So there is a big bet here that everybody is making. And the truth is nobody really knows exactly how it's going to turn out. And not only how many subscribers they are going to sign up eventually, but what they are giving up on the other end in order to get those subscribers.

VAUSE: It's a brave, new, terrifying world for many reasons (ph), right.

LOWRY: It really is.

VAUSE: Good to see you. Thanks for coming in.

LOWRY: Thank you.

VAUSE: And thank you for watching CNN NEWSROOM. I'm John Vause.

"WORLD SPORT" is next.