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King Charles Attends Northern Ireland Prayer Service for Queen; Ukraine Makes Stunning Gains in Counteroffensive Push; DOJ Subpoenas 30-Plus Key Trump Associates as Criminal Probe Intensifies. Aired 10- 10:30a ET
Aired September 13, 2022 - 10:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
JIM SCIUTTO, CNN ANCHOR: Northern Ireland as they attend a service of prayer and reflection for Queen Elizabeth II.
This trip marks King Charles' first trip to Northern Ireland as the United Kingdom's new monarch following in the footsteps of his mother who was an important figure during the Northern Ireland peace process.
In the next hour, the king and queen consort will make their way back to London where they will meet Queen Elizabeth's coffin that will be taken from Edinburgh, Scotland, to Buckingham Palace in just a few hours. We're going to bring you those events live as they happen.
POPPY HARLOW, CNN ANCHOR: So, let's begin this hour in Belfast, Northern Ireland. Our CNN International Diplomatic Editor Nic Robertson joins us from outside of St. Anne's Cathedral. Nic, we're so glad you're there.
The king making his first visit there as monarch. How are he and queen consort received by the people?
NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: Well, so warmly. When he arrived at Hillsborough Castle earlier on, he had a small walkabout, viewed the flowers that have been laid in tribute, met with some of the crowd. But I was so struck as he arrived here at St. Anne's Cathedral. This is, as you say, his first visit here as king, his 40th visit to Northern Ireland.
And as his car pulled up, his window was a little bit down, he was on the side with the crowd behind the barriers, a few feet away. And I was so struck by the way that the way the king waved at the crowd before he was even out of the car, then he opened the door and he was out and he waved.
This sort of is not the way perhaps people have thought of the monarchy in the past, it is somewhat stuffy and a little bit separate and a little bit aloof. This was a king connecting with the people of his country. He was met by the lord lieutenant on the steps of the cathedral here, lord lieutenant of Belfast, introduced to some other local dignitaries. But even as he walked up those few steps into this old cathedral here, the cathedral that is known for being a cross community cathedral, even as he walked up the steps before he went in, he turned and his queen consort, Camilla, waved again at the crowd before they went in. And it is expected, you are hearing the trumpets playing here as the beginning of the remembrance service for the queen and inside St. Anne's there. He's expected to come out and possibly come and meet some of those people he was waving at. That will be in about an hour or so.
SCIUTTO: Nic, it struck me as we've been watching events in recent days, particularly yesterday, just about the proximity that the public gets to the king during that procession yesterday, for instance, just a few feet away from the king and queen consort. As you've watched these interactions between him and she and the crowd, what has the energy has been like?
ROBERTSON: It is quite -- I think uplifting is a good word for it. The spirit among the crowd on Edinburgh's royal mile yesterday was wonderful. The people had come there to celebrate the queen, to pay their respects to the new king. There was a warmth and people were literally standing.
I'm at a barrier here today and yesterday a similar barrier. And the king and his brothers and sister walked just feet away from the people who were standing on the side of the barrier. And it is very much a similar situation today. There is a barrier here. But, again, we're expecting the king to come and greet people at that barrier.
This really is something different. And in a sense that you got, we could tell the king's car was getting close because there is a huge crowd down the street here. And you could hear them break into applause, shout, God Save the King, and even break into (INAUDIBLE) too of the national anthem, the crowd applauding as well when he went in.
So, the king is being received well. His words and he had an important speech already, going down well it seems.
SCIUTTO: Nic Robertson, always good to have you. Thank you.
HARLOW: Thank you, Nic.
Well, this morning, the Ukrainian military claims it continues to gain ground against Russian forces in the east. Ukraine says Russia has been chased from several towns leaving behind weapons and tanks as those forces make a hasty retreat in a race in the face of an aggressive push from Ukraine's counteroffensive.
SCIUTTO: Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy claims his troops have now taken back roughly 2,300 square miles of Russian territory -- Russian-controlled territory in just two weeks, that about 10 percent of the territory taken from Ukraine held by Russia since February. For comparison, that is about the size of the state of Delaware.
In a CNN exclusive, CNN's Sam Kiley is the first journalist inside the liberated city of Izium, and it's a key one.
He joins us now from the nearby city of Kharkiv.
And, Sam, you and I have been talking in recent days and weeks about this coming offensive. But neither you nor I or really, I think, folks we spoke to expected it to proceed so quickly, particularly in the northeast. And I wonder as you go into such a key city, such as Izium, what did it look like and what was the reaction there?
SAM KILEY, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well I think the really striking thing, Jim, is when you say 6,000 square kilometers or an area the size of Delaware, it is very difficult to get a sense of perspective until you're on the ground.
Now we drove, I would say, for an hour-and-a-half, maybe more, crisscrossing recently recaptured Ukrainian territory, territory that three or four days prior we would have been shot to ribbons just approaching. And then we were able to drive. We drive in pretty quickly because the road is still potentially dangerous, a lot of destroyed vehicles on it, but a huge swath of territory. The whole of Kharkiv province, according to the government and to military sources on the ground, is now liberated.
Here is a little taste of what we saw in Izium, though.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KILEY (voice over): -- it's providing a rich harvest to Ukraine's army of abandoned Russian equipment. The Russian Z symbol painted over, the guns ready to kill Russians.
Roles of the senior Russian officers on these school desks that have been arranged in this bunker in this old what looks like a brick factory.
Guns were busy here, their wooden ammunition boxes now stockpiled for winter fuel. And to the Ukrainian victors here, the spoils have been rich. The capture of Izium and the route of route of Russia here has broken a key link in Putin's logistics chain in the battle for the east.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KILEY (on camera): Now, Jim, as you well know, there was also a counteroffensive in the south. Whether that was a faint or simply drew off sufficient Russian troops to make vulnerable here, only history will tell probably.
But there is no question that the Ukrainians on the ground that we spoke to, and we spoke to some pretty important officers, were saying that what the Russians failed to do was appreciate the level of motivation of the Ukrainian troops, the change in tactics that they have, a high level of maneuver warfare that they're now applying and then, of course, you have got that deadly accurate new weaponry that they've come into from the United States and other allies around the world.
And then now, of course, resupplies have been eased in some way by the fact that they've captured so much Russian material, so many artillery pieces, tanks and armored personnel carriers and trucks and we saw them rapidly being turned around and put straight back into the fight. Jim and Poppy?
HARLOW: Before you go, and it is just incredible to see those images, and thank you for bringing it all to us, but what more are you seeing there where you are now in Kharkiv?
KILEY: Well, one of the key issues here is we're only about 25 miles from the Russian border. Belgorod, the town just across the Russian border, has been a location that has been used to shell the city. Indeed, in recent days, there has been quite heavy shelling or rocketing of the city.
But the Ukrainians are still trying to push up in the north and essentially push the Russians along the northern border further east, in other words, again, cutting off those important supply lines and then potentially bringing Russian inside Russian proper locations within artillery range of Ukrainian guns.
Now, at the moment, the deal they've got effectively with their partners in the west is that they're not supposed to use this new weaponry against Russian targets. So that is going to be a difficult deal to maintain if the civilians keep getting shelled from Russian territory. It would be very interesting to see how that developed. Poppy?
SCIUTTO: Sam Kiley there, thanks so much.
Joining me now to discuss what this all means, how it happened, retired Army Major General Spider Marks, head of geopolitical strategy for Academy Securities. Spider Marks, great to have you here.
As we talk, I want folks to draw their attention to this area here because that is really where the bulk of the progress has been just in these last couple of weeks. Spider, as you look at this, and I'm going to play a time lapse of it which shows how quickly in advance just in the last week or two, this is August. It began to pick up just a couple of weeks ago, and you see the progress happening so quickly. What do you attribute that fast and unexpected success to?
MAJ. GEN. JAMES SPIDER MARKS (RET.), CNN MILITARY ANALYST: Well, I think, as has been described by Sam, look, the Russians kind of broad stroke really underestimated the fight for sovereignty and independence that the Ukrainians were going to show and they clearly overestimated their own capabilities.
So, we've been seeing that in stark contrast over the course of the last six, seven months, right? But what has happened specifically in Kharkiv is that Kharkiv is one of those pieces of terrain that is incredibly important. It is a crossroads of rail lines and road lines.
[10:10:00] But when the Ukrainians kept the Russians from getting a good foothold there, that became key terrain for both but the Ukrainians owned it and were able to push out. And as a result of that, they have what's known as interior lines. They can move with a degree of sanctuary and with some capabilities that the Russians couldn't effect.
Bear in mind, the Russians don't have or have not used the extensive precision munitions. They've used artillery quite effectively but randomly. It is a very broad swath of capabilities they have. But they've been using artillery very, very indiscriminately. The Ukrainians on the other hand have been able to push the use of HIMARs, the use of very precise capabilities, excuse me, were able to target the Russians and push and hold that shoulder.
SCIUTTO: And then the question, of course, can they hold this territory?
So, let's look at the whole country, because, as you know, there are really two pushes in this counteroffensive, the one towards Kharkiv that has had such great and unexpected swift success and then the one in the south, which has moved forward but not as dramatically and not as quickly.
I wonder what you see going on here. Because all of the public talk had been about this, most of the progress has been here. Is that just two fronts of this and one is doing better than the other or do you think this was actually the main objective all along?
MARKS: Well, I think if the Russians -- I simply don't know what the Ukrainians were trying to achieve. Look, Odessa still remains open, right? That is key. That is over there by Kherson. But in order to hold Kharkiv and then push and then redefine the Donbas region, that is a priority. So, you can achieve your success there and you can hold in the vicinity of Kherson, you still have the land bridge that goes from the Donbas all the way down to Kherson, and it includes Crimea. Not certain how quickly they are going to be able to reduce that.
SCIUTTO: Understood. And, by the way, this region, I mean, we talked about it many times, is hugely important to Ukraine for its economic viability, security going forward.
Final question, as you know, Ukrainians have complained for some weeks and months that they need more weapons, higher power, greater range, more quickly. It is coming. You've mentioned the HIMARs, certainly not at the pace they want. They said, listen, give us the tools we need not just to hold them off but to take back territory. Does this now increase western confidence so do just that to a greater degree, because they can take back territory?
MARKS: Yes. It is a combination of intent and capability. The inventories are limited. Look, this a tech-centric fight that we see right now. What that means is semiconductors and where are they being produced. So, we have this high capability, high technology warfare being fought against what the Russians are now using in predominant numbers, or dumb weapon systems with artillery. They're getting their artillery from the North Koreans. But the North Koreans have a boatload of this stuff.
And so the fact remains that there are limits to what could be achieved and also the Ukrainians have been told, you don't strike into Russian territory. Look, I think the gloves should be taken off. I mean, this is Mark's view of this. If you want to achieve success, and we saw this in the Vietnam War, right, when we limited our self geographically, if we could engage, if the Ukrainians could engage in Russia, you're going to further erode the Russian ability to do exactly what we're seeing right now.
SCIUTTO: And to your point, they particularly talk about here around Belgorod, which where Russians have been raining rockets and artillery down into Ukrainian territory.
Listen, lots more to follow in the coming days and weeks. We know we'll bring you back to discuss. Major General Spider Marks, thanks so much.
MARKS: Thank you, Jim. Thank you.
SCIUTTO: Still to come this hour, new reporting into CNN from Capitol Hill, the House Oversight Committee asking the National Archives to check if former President Donald Trump still has unaccounted for presidential records. The latest in that investigation and a selection of a so-called special master to review the evidence.
Plus, an exclusive interview with the CEO of Chevron by my colleague, Poppy. What changes the company is making to address climate change, its place in the middle of a global energy crisis and the direct warning of what is to come if the gas industry faces higher windfall profits taxes. Poppy did the interview. It's coming up.
And in Northern Ireland, a prayer service for Queen Elizabeth. King Charles is there but will soon return to London as his mother's coffin will be taken in the coming hours home, you might say, to Buckingham Palace.
Stay with us, as our live coverage from the United Kingdom continues later this hour.
HARLOW: Well, today, the January 6 committee meets as members weigh whether to ask former President Trump and former Vice President Pence to appear before the committee. Multiple sources tell CNN the committee does not believe that they would testify, but still some members think it's important to extend an invitation to them.
SCIUTTO: The consideration comes as the DOJ is ramping up its own investigation, this one in particular into January 6, issuing subpoenas in recent days to at least 30 members of former President Trump's orbit, including members of the Trump 2020 campaign, as well as fundraising teams.
All right, how to make sense of it all, joining us now, former Deputy Assistant Attorney General and Federal Prosecutor Elliot Williams.
Okay. Elliot, it is a lot to go through, and I know I'm always conscience of folks at home because I have trouble keeping track of each movement along the chain here, but let's start with those 30 subpoenas. Because it was only a few weeks ago that folks were criticizing the attorney general for just not doing much here, not seem to be looking into things.
But as we see these moves slowly revealed, it does appear that quite a fulsome investigation has been underway.
ELLIOT WILLIAMS, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: Right. And, Jim, when we talk about January 6, what does that even mean? Well, number one, there is investigations into the crimes of violence and rioting that happened on the grounds of the Capitol. There is obstructing the Capitol, which is obstructing the work of Congress. There is potential campaign finance violations being investigated on account of former President Trump's political action committee. There are the fake electors scheme that led to January 6, and then, of course, when we talk about Mar-a- Lago and the investigation news the documents there.
There are several different investigations happening at once. I know it is dizzying, like you said in the intro here. Some of them fit together but there are really a bunch of separate things happening. All this is to say the Justice Department has a very wide-reaching set of investigations going on right now.
HARLOW: Elliot, just moving to the developments in the last 24 hours over the special master, it is remarkable, as Caroline Polisi said last hour, that it seems like there is consensus on one, and this is a retired judge, Judge Dearie, in terms of who could lead this. You have said that Judge Dearie is as close to a consensus pick as anyone could have been on the list. Can you tell us why this person, you think, makes sense?
WILLIAMS: Well, certainly. Number one, he's a widely respected federal judge. I am familiar with him from my time. I was an intern in the Eastern District of New York some 20-plus years ago. And so he's just widely respected in the court on all sides, number one. Number two, he's presented by the Trump side and the Justice Department has high regard for him. Number three, he has background in the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, which is part of FISA, in effect. So, he has background and experience in highly classified information and working with it.
Now, the devil is going to be in the details. If, in fact, he is selected as the special master, what does he do, and the court hasn't said what exactly the special master is going to have control over, if there is going to be one.
SCIUTTO: Which remains a big question.
Okay. Another development, according to a new letter just obtained by CNN, the House Oversight Committee, it's asking the National Archives, in effect, whether there is evidence Trump still has presidential records in his possession and are asking for the chairwoman of the committee, Carolyn Maloney, asking for personal certification that Trump does not. I wonder what the significance of that is and what power does that committee have, right, really in this process?
WILLIAMS: And thank you for asking the questions, Jim, what power does that committee have? Because it is not the January 6 committee, it is a separate one. There are so many committees in Congress. And the House Oversight Committee oversees the National Archives, right, and they have a slice of this.
Now, they can conduct any investigation into the proper functioning of presidential records and presidential archives and legislating around how presidents store their records. So, what that was I think about was trying to see how the rules and regulations for Archives are being followed.
Now, look, I've dealt with this for 15 years. Committees often butt heads. They are all one Congress but who knows how they're working with the January 6 committee and we'll just have to wait and see.
HARLOW: Elliot Williams, thank you very much.
WILLIAMS: Thanks, folks.
HARLOW: All right. Still ahead, you will hear from the CEO of Chevron, one of the biggest oil and gas companies in the world, talking about the energy crisis in Europe. What is ahead for us here in the United States and also climate change, critically?
HARLOW: Right now, markets tanking, the Dow off 730 points, investors reacting to this inflation report this morning. It showed us that even though overall inflation is easing slightly for the second straight month, when you take out food and energy prices, it can be volatile. Core inflation, what you pay for everything else, it went up a lot. It rose 6.3 percent from a year ago, a sharp increase even from just this summer, this as gas prices, though, continue to fall for a third straight month to $3.71 on average a gallon.
I sat down recently with the CEO and chairman of Chevron, one of biggest oil companies in the world, Michael Wirth, for a CNN exclusive interview, and we talked about energy here, the energy crisis in Europe, the debate over drilling more in the United States and, of course, importantly, climate change. Here it is.
HARLOW: So, let's talk about Europe. I mean, Russia just cut off Nord Stream One, the gas flow, the main gas pipeline to Europe, blaming western sanctions. Russia also said this is going to be long lasting, this shutoff. What does this mean for Europe?
MICHAEL WIRTH, CEO AND CHAIRMAN OF THE BOARD, CHEVRON: Well, Europe has embarked on an energy policy over a number of years, that has created a growing renewable power component, reducing nuclear power, less coal and an increased reliance on gas from primarily one supplier --
WIRTH: -- which creates a vulnerability if that supply has cut off.
Churchill famously said during World War II that security is through diversity of supply.
HARLOW: Are you in the camp that believes this could push Europe into a recession? How painful do you think this energy crisis in Europe will be?
WIRTH: I think it will be painful. Certainly, prices already are very high relative to history and relative to the rest of the world. We're already seeing this impact being felt in the European economy and I do think it is likely that Europe goes into a recession.
HARLOW: Energy Secretary Granholm wrote you a letter a few weeks ago and asked Chevron and other big suppliers.