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Gaza Hospitals Struggle Amid Israeli Airstrikes; David Cameron Returns as UK Foreign Secretary; Trump's Inflammatory Rhetoric and Verbal Attacks; U.S. Strikes Iran-Backed Militias in Syria; Prolonged Conflict Concerns in Israel-Hamas Standoff; Disputed Claims Over Hamas Command Center in Gaza Hospital; Biden Expresses Concerns Over Targeting Hospitals in Gaza'; Donald Trump Jr. Testifies in Civil Fraud Case; UK Cabinet Reshuffle with Cameron's Appointment; Escalating Tensions in Middle East with Proxy Conflicts. Iran-Backed Groups Attack U.S. Forces in Syria; Hate Crimes Rising Across the Globe Since October 7; Seismic Activity Lessens But Volcanic Hazard Assessment Remains in Iceland. Aired 12-1a ET
Aired November 14, 2023 - 00:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
JOHN VAUSE, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT AND ANCHOR: Political comeback, former British Prime Minister David Cameron named Foreign Secretary amid a cabinet shakeup. And words matter, Donald Trump labels political opponent Vermin, warns of a sinister threat from within in a rally speech which echoed the language of Hitler and Mussolini.
One by one, hospitals across Gaza have been forced to close. According to Gaza's Health Ministry, 21 out of 35 are no longer functioning because of damage from Israeli airstrikes or artillery fire or because of a lack of fuel. Now that includes the major medical center in Gaza, Al - Shifa Hospital. Conditions there are described as catastrophic, not only for patients but for thousands of people who have taken refuge in the hospital and surrounding area. The director of Al - Shifa says there is no longer fuel to run generators, which means no electricity, and requests to Israel for 600 liters of fuel needed to run the generators every hour have gone unanswered. The Israelis say 300 liters of fuel was delivered to the main entrance of Al - Shifa on Sunday, but medical staff were prevented from reaching it by Hamas militants.
Israel has long claimed Hamas command centre is located directly below the hospital, claimed supported by one US official, but an allegation denied by doctors, administrators at the hospital as well as Hamas. Gaza's second biggest hospital, Al-Quds, also has no electricity but has also seen clashes between Israeli ground forces and Hamas fighters. The Israelis say they came under fire from militants embedded with civilians at the entrance of the hospital. The Israelis say more than 20 Hamas fighters died in the exchange of fire.
U. S. President Joe Biden expressed concern Monday over hospitals being targeted. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOESEPH BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: And it's my hope and expectation that there will be less intrusive action relative to the hospital. The hospital must be protected.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAUSE: And on Monday, the Israeli prime minister warned that Israel will see this war with Hamas through to the end. And as CNN's Jeremy Diamond reports, hospitals in Gaza have been caught in the crossfire and a warning. His report contains graphic images.
JEREMY DIAMOND, CNN WHITEHOUSE CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Gaza's largest hospital collapsing under the weight of war. Doctors at Al - Shifa Hospital scrambling to keep patients alive amid power outages and severe shortages, including these premature babies wrapped in foil and blankets in a desperate attempt to keep them alive out of their incubators.
In the hospital's yard, dozens of dead bodies slowly decay, unable to be buried. The hospital's complex has been struck repeatedly amid nearby fighting with Hamas militants. The Israeli military now closing in, accusing Hamas of operating an underground command and control centre beneath the sprawling multi block medical facility.
REAR ADMIRAL DANIEL HAGARI, ISRAELI DEFENSE FORCES SPOKESPERSON: It is here in chief of hospital where Hamas operates some of its command and control cells. This is where the direct rocket attacks command Hamas forces.
DIAMOND: But the Israeli military says this image, which CNN cannot independently verify, shows the location of those underground facilities. And now, as Israeli forces encircle the hospital, a U.S. official backing up Israel's allegations, saying Hamas has a command centre under the hospital, uses its fuel intended for the hospital and positions its fighters inside and around the hospital complex. Tonight, the Israeli military says it found this cache of weapons in the basement of another hospital, Al-Rantisi Children's Hospital, which was evacuated this weekend.
UNKNOWN: Yeah, it's a body vest for terrorists to explode on forces among hospitals among patients.
DIAMOND: The Israeli military also uncovering this tunnel entrance, which the IDF Says is next to a school and about 200 yards from the same hospital.
UNKNOWN: A woman clothes and a rope.
DIAMOND: And saying they found signs that Israeli hostages may have been held in the hospital's basement. Today, the Israeli military also says it opened fire on Hamas militants who were embedded among civilians at the entrance of Al - Quds Hospital, where this man with a rocket propelled grenade can be seen in drone footage released by the IDF Hamas denies it operates in hospitals. There is some past evidence linking Hamas to the hospital.
The human rights group Amnesty International, writing that in 2014, Hamas interrogated and tortured alleged Israeli collaborators in a disused outpatient clinic within the grounds of Gaza City's main Al - Shifa Hospital. The Israeli military has opened corridors to evacuate people in and around Shifa Hospital, but medical officials there say there is no way to evacuate many of their 700 patients.
MUNIR AL BURSH, CIRECTOR OF THE HAMAS RUN HEALTH MINISTRY IN GAZA: How do we get 700 patients out on stretchers and bed?
DIAMOND: The director general of the Hamas-run health ministry tells CNN.
BURSH: Some of them are in intensive care and some of them are amputees. How do they want them to leave?
DIAMOND: For now, many are simply trapped. Jeremy Diamond, CNN, Ashkelon, Israel.
VAUSE: To Tel Aviv now and Lieutenant Colonel Peter Lerner, spokesperson for the Israel Defense Forces. Peter, thank you for being with us.
LT. COL. PETER LERNER, ISRAEL DEFENSE FORCES SPOKESPERSON: Good morning, John.
VAUSE: Officials at Al -- Shifa Hospital say they've been asking Israel for 600 liters of fuel an hour to operate generators but have received no response. Have you received those requests? And either way, what is their response right now?
LERNER: John, we are on day 39 of a war that we didn't ask for, a war that Hamas launched against us, and there are 249 Israelis and foreign nationals still being held hostage by Hamas. We are operating and here's what we know. And just by the information that Jeremy Diamond just brought forward, there is damning information suggesting that Hamas operates in, around, from the Shifa Hospital but also, as you rightly pointed out, from other hospitals in the Gaza Strip.
We have reached out to the authorities, the general manager of the hospital. We've had several conversations with him. We brought fuel to the hospital 2 nights ago. Unfortunately, Hamas prevented the hospital from taking that fuel. So, if we bring a million liters of fuel, will Hamas let them take the fuel? So, when we brought 300 liters, that was to give essential services so that we can continue to evacuate the hospital, John. Our efforts over the last month have been to evacuate the hospital.
VAUSE: Peter, let me ask you this, though. Right now, Hamas is holding every patient in Shifa Hospital hostage. Every premature baby, everyone in need of life-saving care, they're being held hostage by Hamas. It is inhumane. It is despicable. It is beyond description. But premature babies did not get a vote in this war. So, what can be done to save them?
LERNER: So here's what we're doing. We've been trying to get incubators, mobile incubators, into Shifa Hospital so that the babies can be moved. This also is still, -- we're still trying to coordinate that so that it can happen. We've released some imagery and also a conversation this morning to you. You can show those images of the incubators that are being prepared for transfer to Shifa Hospital.
We have to do our best together with the international humanitarian organizations, with whoever will help us get the evacuation of the people from the hospital. If this hospital is being used, like the Rantisi Hospital, where Nic Robertson visited yesterday and saw extensively the weapons that were being held in this hospital, the explosives being held in the hospital. If Shifa is a, if Rantisi is a miniature Shifa, can we imagine what is actually going on on the grounds of the complex of Shifa Hospital?
VAUSE: Let me --
LERNER: It's by chance that a U.S. official has said that they have their own confirmation for this.
VAUSE: Let me ask you a very unfair question, Peter. Let me ask you a very unfair question. On Monday, the U.S. president said hospitals must be protected. How can Israel do that while at the same time trying to destroy a Hamas command centre believed to be under Shifa Hospital with Hamas fighters embedded with the civilian population? Are both possible at the same time? And this is an unfair question, I know.
LERNER: I don't think it's an unfair question. I think what we're trying to do and we've been trying to do for the last month is evacuate the hospital in order to get people out of harm's way. Of course, that is not in Hamas's interest, but we all need to work together. The international community, the IDF, the international humanitarian organizations on the ground need to work together in order to make that happen. It is the people of Gaza that are paying the heavy price of the poor decisions of Hamas to launch a war against Israel.
As I said, we didn't ask for this. We have absolutely, -- we were ill prepared for this war, but we are nevertheless determined that Hamas will never, never ever have the power of government again to launch such a brutal massacre against Israel. It just has to change. The paradigm has to change. We have to continue, you know, you reported and Jeremy reported the evacuation path out of the hospital going east so that people can get down south where it is safer. Indeed, there is a logistical challenge that needs to be addressed. We are willing to facilitate, to coordinate, to make that happen. We have to work together in order to make sure it happens. If the interest is getting people out of harm's way, and we understand that Hamas's hub of terrorism is the source of harm's way, which is the hospital, then we need to get the people out. That's plain and simple. That's what we've been trying to do now for a month. And everybody keeps telling us that it's impossible rather than saying, let's make it happen so that people are safe.
VAUSE: Yeah, okay. Look, it's a fair point. I guess at this point, it does have to be a coordinated effort between the IDF, those humanitarian groups. I have a short time left. Is there any progress at this point in those ongoing talks over a possible pause in the fighting in exchange for hostages?
LERNER: So, the priority of hostage release is a top national priority of Israel. And the IDF are extensively involved in both operational and intelligence gathering to try and find the opportunity to rescue the hostages. I can't announce or bring any new information to this subject. The hostages need to be released now. The youngest hostage being held is 10 months old, baby Kfir (ph). It just has to be, he has to be brought home and the others need to be brought home. This has to be brought to an end.
We've demanded that the International Committee of the Red Cross have access to assess the wellbeing of the hostages, but they need to be brought home. They need to be brought home now.
VAUSE: Yeah, Hamas obviously doesn't abide by international rules, unfortunately. Peter, Lieutenant Colonel Peter Lerner, thank you, sir. Appreciate your time.
LERNER : Thanks, John. VAUSE: In Northern Gaza, thousands of Palestinians are still -- seeking shelter inside those hospitals which are still open, including one family desperately trying to get the attention of the US government. CNN's Jomana Karadsheh tells us the story of a wounded American teenager trapped in the war zone and her father's fervent plea.
JOMANA KARADSHEH, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Darkness has descended on yet another Gaza medical facility, Al-Quds Hospital, where they've been trying to save lives with the very little they have left, but it's become nearly impossible. This was Al-Quds just hours before Gaza's second largest hospital was declared out of service on Sunday. Like other hospitals in the north, the fighting has been closing in on Al-Quds, where thousands of displaced had been sheltering alongside the injured. Among them are at least two US citizens, Farah Abuolba and her mother, Nuha.
FARAH ABUOLBA, AMERICAN INJURED IN GAZA: I want to feel like, oh, I can move my fingers. My fingers are gone now.
KARADSHEH: Farah says she was injured in an attack on their bus on the road south as they tried to make their way for a third time to the Rafah crossing with Egypt. The family blames Israel, whose military denied to CNN that they struck that street on that day.
F. ABUOLBA: I walked from the beach. Like, it was probably 3 miles from the beach to the hospital. I could have given up. I felt like all my blood, all my blood dripped all over me. I -- how I felt when I saw my hand falling or how I felt my skin just, and my bones breaking, and how I saw my wrist just turn blue. I knew that my hand was gone.
KARADSHEH: This interview with Farah was filmed a few days ago by a journalist working for CNN on the eve of her 17th birthday before the hospital was almost completely cut off from the outside world.
F. ABUOLBA: When I sleep, I dream of what happened to me. I can hear the rockets when they hit me, and my sister and my mom just screaming when they saw my hand fall.
KARADSHEH: This is a scene just outside the hospital. This video released by the Israeli military captures a militant carrying a rocket-propelled grenade they say was part of a group that attacked their forces. Palestinians deny anyone armed is inside and say the Israeli military is surrounding and targeting the hospital. Israel says it's targeting Hamas.
Farah was born in Gaza and left with her family when she was three. They were back to visit family when the war broke out. For her father, Karam Abuolba in Pennsylvania, the past few weeks have been hell, desperately trying to get his wife and daughters back home, exchanging almost daily emails and calls with the State Department.
KARAM ABUOLBA, FATHER AND HUSBAND OF AMERICANS IN GAZA: I'm asking, is there a class, A class B from the US citizen for all the US citizen? I pay tax for United States of America to support Israel to shoot and to bomb my daughter and my wife. I need the president. I need Mr. Blinken to listen to this message. We are a US citizen. We are loyal to this country. Send the Red Cross. Send them to support the US citizen. They are outside. They are not hostage with Hamas.
KARADSHEH: A father's desperation to make his family's suffering heard, but like so many thousands, he feels no one is hearing Gaza's cries for help.
H. ABUOLBA: I feel everything hopeless. I feel like I'm dead.
KARADSHEH: Jomana Karadsheh, CNN, London.
VAUSE: We'll take a short break. When we come back, a return to politics. After a 7-year absence, former British Prime Minister David Cameron heading back to the government cabinet. Also ahead, labelling his political opponents vermin, dehumanizing his critics, warning of a mysterious threat from within. Donald Trump seems to have unintentionally or otherwise borrowed some hateful rhetoric from dictators like Hitler. Details in a moment.
VAUSE: A dramatic cabinet reshuffle in the UK is leading to the return to politics for the Former British Prime Minister David Cameron. Current leader of the Conservative Party, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, announced Monday Home Secretary Suella Braverman had been sacked for inflammatory comments about policing of pro-Palestinian protests in London. Sunak then announced David Cameron's comeback as Foreign Secretary, a role Cameron says he gladly accepted.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DAVID CAMERON, INCOMING BRITISH FOREIGN SECRETARY: Well, I know it's not usual for a prime minister to come back in this way, but I believe in public service. The prime minister asked me to do this job, and it's a time where we have some daunting challenges as a country. The conflict in the Middle East, the war in Ukraine. And of course, I hope that 6 years as prime minister, 11 years leading the Conservative Party, gives me some useful experience and contacts and relationships and knowledge that I can help the prime minister.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAUSE: CNN's Clare Sebastian takes a closer look at Cameron's return to government.
CLARE SEBASTIAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): A relaxed stroll that belied the drama of this moment. A shock return for a British prime minister who 7 years earlier left Downing Street after Britain voted to leave the European Union.
CAMERON: It has been the greatest honor of my life to serve our country as prime minister over these last 6 years and to serve as leader of my party for almost 11 years.
SEBASTIAN: David Cameron, who had led the campaign to remain in the EU, resigned from government after the 2016 Brexit referendum. Now he's back on the political stage as Foreign Secretary, tasked with managing the country's relationships abroad. His appointment coming amid a cabinet reshuffle which ousted hardline Home Secretary Suella Braverman, accused of fanning social tensions and undermining the police ahead of a pro-Palestinian demonstration in London this weekend. That proved the final straw.
SUELLA BRAVERMAN, FORMER BRITISH HOME SECRETARY: It's the coalition of chaos. It's the Guardian reading. tofu-eating wokerati, dare I say, the anti-growth coalition.
SEBASTIAN: Her tenure already marked by confrontational rhetoric towards migrants, protesters, even the homeless, had sparked more rifts in the already fractured Conservative Party, which has seen a recent revolving door of prime ministers and an array of outrage, including a lobbying scandal that embroiled both Cameron and the current prime minister, Rishi Sunak. Amid plummeting approval ratings, Sunak had attempted to break with the past.
RISHI SUNAK, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: We've had 30 years of a political system which incentivizes the easy decision, not the right one.
SEBASTIAN: And although Sunak and Cameron had publicly disagreed, not least on Brexit, Cameron attempted Monday to move beyond that, saying he is ready to work together on quote, a daunting set of international challenges, including supporting Sunak's efforts in the war in Ukraine and the crisis in the Middle East.
SUNAK: Well, Prime Minister, thank you for your warm words and for welcoming me to Israel.
SEBASTIAN: So, while some are welcoming the return of an experienced hand, others see it as more evidence Britain's ruling party is heading on shaky grounds towards another general election. Clare Sebastian, CNN, London.
VAUSE: Donald Trump Jr. was back in the witness stand Monday, his second appearance but his first for the defense in the $250 million civil fraud case against his father. Don Jr. walked the court through a fawning video presentation of various Trump properties, calling his father quote, an artist with real estate. The judge has already ruled the former president and his co-defendants are liable for fraud after falsely inflating values of Trump organization properties in an effort to get better rates from banks on loans.
Donald Jr.'s testimony was an attempt to show that if anything, the company's properties were actually undervalued in financial statements. Well, as he faces myriad legal troubles, Donald Trump is already unloading on the campaign trail. The former president spent the weekend ramping up hateful rhetoric, lashing out at his opponents. CNN's Kristen Holmes has more.
KRISTEN HOLMES, CNN U.S. NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Former President Donald Trump ramping up his inflammatory rhetoric.
DONALD TRUMP, REPUBLICAN PRESIDENTIAL CANDIATE: The threat from outside forces is far less sinister, dangerous and grave than the threat from within.
HOLMES: Denigrating his political opponents on the left as quote, vermin during a Veterans Day speech in New Hampshire. TRUMP: We will root out the communists, Marxists, fascists and the radical left thugs that live like vermin within the confines of our country.
HOLMES: The White House condemning Trump's remarks, likening them to language used by authoritarian leaders. Quote, using terms like that about dissent would be unrecognizable to our founders, but horrifyingly recognizable to American veterans who put on their country's uniform in the 1940s. White House spokesperson Andrew Bates said in a statement. As the former president commands the GOP primary with his combative rhetoric, his allies are already planning an agenda for a potential second term. The proposals include leveraging the Department of Justice to go after his political rivals.
TRUMP: I mean, if somebody, if I happen to be president and I see somebody who's doing well and beating me very badly, I say, go down and indict them.
HOLMES: A Trump 2025 agenda would also expand the hardline immigration policies Trump pursued during his first term in office.
TRUMP: We will begin the largest domestic deportation operation in American history.
HOLMES: With the mass detention and deportation of undocumented immigrants.
TRUMP: I will shut down this travesty, terminate all work permits for illegal aliens and demand that Congress send me a bill outlawing all welfare payments to illegal migrants of any kind.
HOLMES: It's part of an escalation in anti-immigrant language by the former president.
TRUMP: It's poisoning the blood of our country. It's so bad and people are coming in with disease. People are coming in with, with every possible thing that you can have.
HOLMES: Trump's darkening political rhetoric appears to resonate with Republicans. As South Carolina Senator Tim Scott, who campaigned on a more optimistic message, suddenly ended his presidential bid Sunday after failing to gain traction in the polls.
TIM SCOTT, FORMER REPUBLICAN PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I think the voters who are the most remarkable people on the planet have been -- really clear that they're telling me not now, Tim.
HOLMES: And the Trump 2025 agenda as it's been laid out here is really just the tip of the iceberg. We have also heard about Trump allies who are building a database of loyalists, people who would go and serve the president from day one. We've also heard about allies working with lawyers trying to draft executive orders so that these policies can be implemented, that Donald Trump can sign off on them as soon as he gets into office, should he be elected. Kristen Holmes, CNN, Washington.
(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE) VAUSE: Still to come this hour on CNN, the U.S. strikes Iran-backed militias in Syria, which have attacked U.S. forces in the region, even as it tries to prevent a wider conflict in the Middle East. More on that in a moment.
VAUSE: Welcome back, everyone. You're watching CNN Newsroom. I'm John Vause. Since Israel declared war with Hamas, U.S. and coalition forces in the region have been repeatedly targeted by Iran-backed militias. One U.S. official tells CNN that at least 4 more attacks on U.S. forces in Syria over the past day. There were no casualties. The latest attacks come hours after the U.S. military carried out retaliatory strikes on targets associated with Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard as well as its proxies. Pentagon officials say those strikes were conducted to send a clear message the U.S. will defend itself and its personnel.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JAKE SULLIVAN, U.S. NATIONAL SECURITY ADVISER: Our goal over time is to ensure that our forces are protected and that we respond if we get hit. That is what we have done. That is what we will continue to do. And this should be measured over the course of time, not over the course of 24 hours.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAUSE: Since October 7th, Pentagon officials say the number of attacks against U.S. and coalition forces in Syria and Iraq are now numbered at 52. Robin Wright is a contributing writer for The New Yorker and a fellow at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. And it's great to have you with us. Thank you for joining us.
ROBIN WRIGHT, THE NEW YORKER CONTRIBUTING WRTIER: Thank you.
VAUSE: So, at this point in the conflict, almost 40 days on, in the past, we'd be seeing a ceasefire around now and, you know, at least they'd be close to one. Israel and Hamas would be arguing over what's allowed into Gaza for reconstruction. But this time, we're not even close. So in terms of a wider escalation, what is the relationship here? How much more of a reality does that become the longer the Israeli offensive goes on and why?
WRIGHT: Well, all the previous conflicts between Hamas and Israel have played out, as you pointed out, in a matter of a few days or a couple of weeks. And then they engage with Egypt or Qatar to negotiate a temporary ceasefire and the exchange of any personnel. But this time, we're seeing this war play on far longer than any Israeli conflict in the past. The last long one was in 2006 between Israel and Hamas that went on for 34 days. The danger here is that the longer this goes on, the more players get involved from the Middle East and the larger the stakes, that it's not just limited to Israel and Hamas, but to the larger players and the other militias in the region. VAUSE: Because beyond the fighting in Gaza, we're already seeing this happening right now. In the north, there has been an escalation in cross-border attacks between the IDF and the Iranian-backed Hezbollah militants. That's not uncommon. That's happened before.
But this time, there have also been attacks on U.S. and coalition forces in the region, notably Iraq and Syria. U.S. fighter jets have responded to that, carrying out at least two separate airstrikes on Iranian assets in Syria.
And also, for the first time, it seems, Iran-backed Houthi militia in Yemen are firing rockets towards Israel. They've been intercepted so far by the Israelis and the U.S. Navy.
But what is clearly happening here is, if this conflict escalates, we're looking into some kind of indirect confrontation between the U.S. and Iran. Is that ultimately where this is potentially going?
ROBIN WRIGHT, WOODROW WILSON INTERNATIONAL CENTER FOR SCHOLARS: That's the potential. Is it the probability? One of the interesting things that's happened is neither Iran nor Hezbollah has launched a full- scale war.
Hezbollah has many times the weapons that Hamas does. And if Hezbollah and Hamas had operated at the same time, it would have been catastrophic for Israel.
But it is true that you see multiple fronts in the Middle East. You have the -- both the Houthis and Hezbollah firing at Israel, in limited ways so far. Israel -- or Hezbollah could have done far more damage.
But you have a second front, in effect, by the Iranian-backed militias in Syria and Iraq, targeting American forces in both countries who are involved in a totally separate war. They're deployed in both countries to fight ISIS, a holdover from the U.S.-led campaign to eliminate the Islamic State.
So there are 900 Americans in Syria, 2,500 in Iraq. And they're coming under fire. More than 40 attacks and more than 50 Americans who have been injured. Some of them with dramatic brain injuries.
So yes, this again is kind of tripping into a wider conflict, indirectly, including forces that are not deployed because of Israel- Hamas at war.
VAUSE: And we're hearing from Iran's foreign minister, who's saying, in not so many words, if this does escalate, blame the United States. Here he is.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HOSSEIN AMIR-ABDOLLAHIAN, IRAN'S FOREIGN MINISTER (through translator): We are not looking for the expansion of war in the region. Those are looking for the expansion of war, who instead are putting pressure on Israeli regime officially and openly, declare that it is not yet time for ceasefire and are still sending weapons and even equipment that are prohibited to the Zionist regime.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAUSE: And we're talking about Iran now, which has moved a lot closer to Russia militarily, and a lot closer to China, economically speaking. This is a whole different sort of region, compared to what we've seen over the last decade or so.
WRIGHT: Absolutely. And that has global repercussions. The Iran- Russia-China axis is distinctly different in terms of what's playing out in the Middle East and the way it impacts the United States and its Western allies.
But what's interesting is that Iran has -- has used a lot of rhetoric, blamed the United States, but has not engaged in the ways it could.
Hezbollah, the leader, Hassan Nasrallah, has given two major speeches since this war began. And both of them, again, a lot of rhetoric. But Hezbollah has so far limited its attacks to a narrower strip along the border, when it could reach deep into Israel if it wanted to attack the electricity grid, the airport, and other major strategic sites.
So we're seeing a lot of action that hasn't happened before, but not as much as could happen.
VAUSE: But is there the risk of miscalculation here by -- by parties involved?
WRIGHT: Absolutely. And that's the -- you know, the unintended consequences of war are often the most dangerous aspects. When something happens that neither -- that none of the sides intended, and it accelerates the kind of hostilities, the fears, suspicions and leads to a much wider war. And that's what I think everyone watching this war is worried about.
VAUSE: Robin Wright, thank you so much more time and your insights. Very much appreciated. Thank you.
WRIGHT: Thank you, John.
VAUSE: It also seems the longer the conflict in Gaza goes on, the greater the number of hate crimes including antisemitism and Islamophobia reported worldwide. Here's CNN's Nick Watt.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Oh, my God!
NICK WATT, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): An American college campus Saturday. Seven arrests at a pro-Palestinian demonstration after what Brandeis officials call threatening language and hate speech. Central London, the same day, a pro-Palestinian rally, far-right
counter protesters, chaos.
Suella Braverman, who held the key post of home secretary was fired Monday morning after calling such pro-Palestinian demonstrations hate marches.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Suella Braverman's comments have caused more (ph) division.
WATT (voice-over): In Paris Sunday, thousands marched against antisemitism, which has spiked in France since the Hamas terror attacks and the Israeli response.
"We mustn't import conflicts that are happening elsewhere into our country," she says.
WATT (voice-over): Fear and anger emanating from the Middle East are going global, stoking antisemitism and Islamophobia.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Get away!
WATT (voice-over): In Brooklyn, a man wearing a keffiyeh scarf says he was attacked by a woman who accused him of supporting terror.
The Council on American-Islamic Relations received over 1,200 requests for help and reports of anti-Muslim bias in the month since October 7th, triple the figure from the same time last year. College campuses are a flashpoint.
WATT (voice-over): UCLA demonstrators battered pinatas on campus, showing the faces of President Biden and the Israeli prime minister. Antisemitic emails sent to staff at UPenn, Islamophobic emails sent to Muslim student groups at UConn.
ADAM LEHMAN, PRESIDENT AND CEO, HILLEL INTERNATIONAL: The problem on campus right now has reached a critical point and, really, a point we have never seen in hundreds of years of higher education in America.
WATT (voice-over): Jewish Voice for Peace and Students for Justice in Palestine have been suspended by Columbia University for unauthorized events, violating school policy. The groups could not be reached for comment.
LEHMAN: We are well beyond a time for words of support or expressions of understanding. We need serious, aggressive concrete action.
WATT (voice-over): A Jewish legal organization has filed civil rights complaints against UPenn and Wellesley College, claiming both have "failed to protect Jewish students." Neither school has commented. ROSE GOLDSTEIN, STUDENT, WELLESLEY COLLEGE: The student residential
staff of one of our dorms stated in an email that there should be no space for Zionism on campus whatsoever. There is a way to criticize, for example, the Israeli government and not be antisemitic.
WATT (voice-over): At Ohio State University, the Hillel Jewish Student Center was vandalized and two students attacked after being asked if they were Jewish. Police calling it a hate crime.
WATT: There was an interesting little flip-flop at M.I.T. over the past few days. Apparently, a protest and a counterprotest got a little bit out of hand, so college brass threatened students if they didn't disperse by a deadline, they would be suspended.
Then, it seems they found out that quite a few of the students involved are foreign nationals. So, if they're suspended, they lose their visa and they get thrown out of the country.
So, M.I.T. dialed back a little bit and said there's an interim measure. They're going to be suspended just from non-academic activities on campus. If they state enrolled, they keep their visas, and they stay in the United States.
Nick Watt, CNN, Los Angeles.
VAUSE: Just a moment here. Residents of a small town in Iceland being urged to evacuate amid spears of a volcanic eruption. Details when we return.
VAUSE: Europe's most active volcano, Mount Etna, erupted Sunday, sending lava 4,500 meters, or nearly 15,000 feet, above sea level. A huge plume of smoke could be seen rising into the red sky over Sicily. Several loud explosions were also heard.
According to the National Institute of Geophysics, Etna's latest rumblings are not expected to result in air travel delays, like it did last August.
Iceland also seeing some volcanic activity. The Icelandic Met Office now says seismic activity in the region is decreasing, although the volcanic hazard assessment remains unchanged.
More than 3,000 people have been urged to evacuate from the town of Grindavik as a precaution. Here's Fred Pleitgen.
FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Now, the authorities in Iceland are saying that the seismic activity in the South of the country has decreased somewhat. PLEITGEN (voice-over): But that certainly needs to be put into
The authorities say that, in a measurement period of 12 hours on Monday, they recorded about 900 earthquakes around the town of Grindavik and the surrounding areas.
And in the same measurement period a day before, they recorded about 1,000 earthquakes. So definitely still a lot of seismic activity going on.
However, residents said, that we've heard from, do say that the ground there certainly has become a lot more calm over the past 24 hours. And that could be a good sign.
However, the authorities are saying that the projection is still that there could be a massive eruption that is imminent. And that's why an evacuation order for the town of Grindavik is still very much in effect.
Now, one of the things that the authorities did do is they did allow some people to return to their homes for a short period of time to pick up some of their belongings. There was only one person per household and only accompanied by the authorities.
And a lot of the folks there have said over the past couple of days when they were evacuated, that they are not sure whether or not they will ever see their homes, whether or not they will ever see their town again because, of course, one of the risks that is there is that Grindavik could be destroyed, if, in fact, a massive eruption takes place right at that location.
Of course, the world is also watching this very closely. A lot of people looking back to 2010 when a massive volcanic eruption in Iceland caused air travel to essentially be stopped for a period of several weeks.
Certainly something that the world is looking for because, back then --
PLEITGEN: -- a lot of airlines lost a lot of money. A lot of businesses lost a lot of money, as well.
Fred Pleitgen, CNN, Berlin.
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