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Israel Caught Between Restraint And Revenge; U.S. House Speaker Mike Johnson Allows House To Take Up Aid To Ukraine And Israel; Parts Of Dubai Underwater Right Now; Top College Player Makes Her Move To The Pros. Aired 12-1p ET

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ZAIN ASHER, CNN INTERNATIONAL HOST: What, when and how. The world right now is waiting to see what exactly Israel does next. Coming to you live from

New York, I'm Zain Asher. I'll be bringing you all the latest on the conflict brewing between Israel and Iran.

ERICA HILL, CNN INTERNATIONAL HOST: And I'm Erica Hill, live outside the courthouse in Lower Manhattan, where I'll be bringing you the latest on

jury selection in Donald Trump's criminal hush money trial.

ASHER: All right, before we get to the trial, we want to begin in Israel, where the clock is ticking down to a decision, and experts suggest the

choice lies somewhere between restraint and revenge. The country's war cabinet met for the third straight day earlier to figure out how to

respond, how exactly to respond to Iran's first ever direct attacks on Israel took place over the weekend.

The meeting concluded without any word of any kind of definitive strategy. But here's what we know so far. It's not a matter of if Israel is going to

respond. It's a matter of when it will happen and how severe it will be. Sources are telling CNN the U.S. expects any potential Israeli military

strike to be limited in scope. The IDF meantime confirms the Iranian attack will not go unanswered.


HERZI HALEVI, LIEUTENANT GENERAL, IDF CHIEF OF STAFF: The IDF remains ready to counter any threat from Iran and its terror proxies as we continue our

mission to defend the state of Israel.


ASHER: Tehran, for its part, is warning of, quote, "Severe and painful consequences, even if the smallest action is taken against Iranian

targets." It comes as governments around the world continue to push for de- escalation in any attempt to avoid a wider regional conflict.


PAT RYDER, MAJOR GENERAL, PENTAGON PRESS SECRETARY: As Secretary Austin has said both publicly and privately, we don't want to see escalation, but we

obviously will take necessary measures to protect our forces in the region. And as was demonstrated over the weekend, we'll take necessary measures to

defend Israel.


ASHER: All right. CNN's Alexander Marquardt is in Washington for us. We've got Jeremy Diamond joining us live now from Tel Aviv. Jeremy, let me start

with you, because I understand that you visited an IDF military base where you actually got to see up close an Iranian missile that was actually


Apparently 36 feet long, really shows you what could have happened, what could have gone wrong in Israel over the weekend if it wasn't for the Iron

Dome. If we play out this game of chess, just walk us through what is the right. Israel obviously weighing up so much before it calculates a

response. What does the right response look like here?

JEREMY DIAMOND, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, that is indeed the question, Zain, and it is very difficult to see exactly how the Israeli military and its

government will ultimately thread that needle. That does seem to be what where the Israeli government is headed, a military response that threads

the needle, that sends the right message about deterrence, about the fact that this attack by Iran cannot go unanswered, but that at the same time

avoids the type of escalation that could lead to a full-blown war between Israel and Iran. Certainly, Israel is coming under enormous pressure from

the United States to do just that.

But I do want to talk to you about that -- this piece of a missile that I saw at this military base, 36 feet long, you were right, but that's

actually just one piece of this Iranian ballistic missile. It is the fuel tank of the missile, which the Israeli military told us they recovered

after a crash landed into the Dead Sea.

As I was walking along this missile, you can just kind of get a sense of the scale of this and how much fuel must have been packed in there in order

for it to travel the hundreds of miles to be able to try and reach its targets in Israel. The Israeli military told us that they believe that this

missile was likely intercepted.


They pointed to some holes in the sides of this fuel tank as an indication of that. We spoke with a ballistic missile expert who told us that this

fuel tank appears to be quite intact to have been intercepted directly, although it is possible that fragments of an interceptor which would have

targeted the warhead of this actually hit that fuel tank before it landed in the Dead Sea.

But nonetheless, as you were saying, when you see the size of this missile, you get a sense of the kind of damage it could cause if indeed it made it

through all of these aerial defense systems. And certainly, the fact that Israel, in cooperation with the United States and with other countries in

the region, was able to intercept 99 percent of these 300-plus drones and missiles, is certainly a factor that Israel is considering as it plans out

its next response.

They don't see it as a reason not to respond to Iran because they still believe that deterrence needs to be re-established in some way. But

certainly, the fact that so many of these allies cooperated with Israel and made this aerial defense so successful does weigh in on how Israel will

choose to respond going forward.

ASHER: All right, Jeremy Diamond, live for us there. Thank you so much. Alex Marquardt, let me bring you in because we're not getting any sort of

concrete readout in terms of these war cabinet meetings that are taking place in Israel. But as I understand it, based on your reporting, U.S.

officials are saying that they anticipate an Israeli response to be limited in scope. The problem is, though, is that Iranian officials are saying that

regardless of how limited in scope, the Israeli response is, they are vowing to retaliate yet again. Walk us through it.

ALEX MARQUARDT, CNN CHIEF NATIONAL SECURITY CORRESPONDENT: Yeah, and that's what's really striking fear into the hearts of officials here in

Washington, D.C. I mean, certainly the Biden administration is waiting to hear what comes out of those war cabinet meetings, as well. Obviously, they

have a better line into the prime minister's office than we do. But there is a real sense that they're waiting to see what Israel does.

Now, the U.S. would prefer that Israel do nothing. Of course, the U.S. thinks that Israel has every right to defend itself. But at the same time,

the way Washington is seeing it right now is that Israel struck the Iranian consulate in Damascus. Iran responded and Israel defended themselves very,

very effectively. Ninety nine percent of those projectiles were taken down with the assistance, we should note, of the U.S. and other countries.

And so, equilibrium has been reestablished, according to one senior Biden official I spoke with. And so, they have been putting pressure. And it is,

of course, significant pressure when it comes from your closest ally on Israel not to do anything. But that may be wishful thinking. The sense is

that Israel will go ahead and do something. The question is what that will look like.

And what we've been told by multiple officials is that it is expected to be narrower in scope, a limited kinetic action. So, that would mean something

that is quite visible. So the world would know that Israel has struck Iran, but in not -- in such a way as to hopefully not trigger an Iranian


So far, what we're told is that there has been no warning to the U.S. by Israel that anything is imminent. And you heard in that clip there from the

Pentagon, the U.S. is still very much on high alert. So, the U.S. would hope to get a courtesy warning from Israel, because if Iran were to

respond, U.S. ships and troops and diplomats around the region could be in harm's way.

So far, we're told there has not been that warning. So, the message from the Biden administration has been to Israel, take the win. You guys did a

great job defending yourselves with our help. Take the win and move on. There's a lot of goodwill for Israel right now because they've been

attacked. Goodwill that Israel has not felt from around the world, frankly, for the last several months.

But certainly, what the U.S. is hearing from Israel right now is they feel a need to restore that deterrent effect against Iran. Zain.

ASHER: All right, Alexander Marquardt, live for us there. Thank you so much. All right, I'm going to turn now to my colleague Erica Hill, live for

us in New York. It is day two of jury selection in Donald Trump's historic hush money trial. Erica, a lot of jurors, prospective jurors rather,

already dismissed after saying they'd have trouble being fair and impartial. Walk us through, Erica.

HILL: Yeah, that's right, Zain. But there are 18 prospective jurors that are now going through the process of being questioned, deeper questioning

here. This process of finding a jury, Zain, of course, who can be fair and impartial, who also will have six to eight weeks available to sit in that

courtroom every day.

It's not easy. Donald Trump is there in court again today looking at potential jurors, sitting there with his legal defense team. The court just

took a quick break, about a 10-minute break that they're on right now. Prior to entering the courtroom, Donald Trump, of course, speaking out once

again. One of the jurors who actually went through day one of the process and then was excused on day two.


A man saying he was now unsure that he could be impartial. Another said he was worried about the strain of being involved in such a high profile

trial. As for the defendant, he was defiant as ever, walking into the courthouse earlier this morning.


DONALD TRUMP, REPUBLICAN PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I was paying a lawyer and marked it down as a legal expense, some accountant. I didn't know. Marked

it down as a legal expense. That's exactly what it was. And you get indicted over that.


Joining us now is senior crime and justice reporter Katelyn Polantz -- joining us with the latest. Katelyn, I mentioned we're just on a quick, I

believe it's a 10 minute break right now. I'm also just seeing from some of the reporting inside the court that Donald Trump has in fact changed his

mind about being a part of what's known as sidebars as part of this jury selection process. What else happened there?

KATELYN POLANTZ, CNN SENIOR CRIME AND JUSTICE REPORTER: Yeah, that's a little blip on just how things are going to work in this trial. Whenever a

jury is in the room, sometimes prosecutors and the defense lawyers have to talk to the judge about the law or something that's happening before the

jury. But they don't want the jury to hear. And sometimes you can't have the jury hear or it would cause a mistrial of some sort.

So, the judge will have what's called a sidebar conversation with those lawyers. Defendants have the right to listen in on those proceedings.

Sometimes they do in headsets. Sometimes they walk up to the bench. But in this case, Trump yesterday appeared to be wanting to engage in those

sidebar conversations.

Today, he's signing a form waiving his ability to do that. He said he doesn't need to be. What that means in the big scheme of things is, well,

we'll just have to see how that plays out, how many sidebars there even are as this trial gets started and progresses. But Erica, right now we are

moving kind of swiftly through some of the questioning of these potential jurors.

There are 18 prospective jurors in the box right now answering questions from the prosecutors that the prosecutor was asking them things, telling

them you're going to have to decide what Donald Trump's intent is behind these charged, falsified business records related to the payment to Stormy

Daniels in 2016.

The prosecutor also told these jurors, take a moment and look at the defendant, even look at the defendant in the eyes and look inside yourself

and come to terms with whether you can consider finding this person guilty if the facts are proven beyond a reasonable doubt.

The jurors from our reporting in the courtroom answered yes, that they could weigh this case fairly. That was the apparent conclusion of the

prosecutor's questioning of this batch of jurors. The defense team will get to ask their own questions of jurors, as well. Remember, though, there's

two parts of this. There's striking people for cause, including the people that say they can't be fair and impartial. Many of those people have been

taken out of the jury pool, dozens at this point.

But then there's the other piece of this, where the prosecutors and the defense are just trying to get more information about these people because

they can -- they each have 10 strikes. They can remove people for no cause at all.

And so, that is the portion of the questioning we're in related to these 18 to see if anyone will say something about their politics, their background,

their family or Donald Trump himself that would give reason to the defense team or the prosecutors to not want them to be a juror on this case.

HILL: We'll be watching as it continues to unfold and as that questioning continues, Katelyn, appreciate it. Thank you. For an even deeper dive,

we're joined now by someone who has an intimate understanding of this very courthouse, Jeremy Saland is a former prosecutor in the Manhattan D.A.'s


It's good to see you. I want to pick up on some of what Katelyn just ended with. She was talking about the reporting that we're getting from inside

the courtroom that one of the attorneys for the prosecution had asked everyone whether they'd be able to return a guilty verdict if they could

look the defendant in the eye and do that. They said yes, as Caitlin noted out.

We also have a note that Donald Trump was looking at them, appeared to be looking a lot of them in the box as they answered that question. In your

experience, what is it like for a potential juror to be in a courtroom where they can see that defendant in this moment, especially when it is

such a high profile person?

JEREMY SALAND, FORMER MANHATTAN PROSECUTOR: Absolutely. On the defense side, you want to humanize that client of yours. You want to humanize and

give compassion and empathy or build that up for the jury. And the jury will sometimes do so. And sometimes they won't.

And you want them as a defendant to look that juror in the eye so they can see who they are. But at the same time, the prosecution is asking because

they don't want to be hoodwinked or fooled by who the person is sitting there. They want to make sure that despite how he looks, despite how he may

behave, they can hold him to that burden and prove that case beyond a reasonable doubt.

So -- so, it's a little bit playmanship, a little bit of gamesmanship. And as much as you can interact with that jury, that is so critical. It can't

just be yes or no answers and questions. You have to engage them and see how they respond and how they respond to in words and in their body

language, too.


HILL: The prosecutor laying out there, too, that they would there would he would hear from some -- some witnesses who might have some edge in his

words, referring to some of the witnesses, and that it would be important as to whether they could set aside likability versus credibility. They

don't have to like the witness, but could they find the witness -- witness credible even if they didn't -- didn't like them? How much of a hurdle

could that be when you look at some of the witnesses in this case?

SALAND: Yeah, it's a big hurdle. And, you know, Michael Cohen, you know, obviously none of us know him personally, but he has a lot of baggage. And

you have to say to yourself, you know, can you still find him credible even though he's admitted lying?

Can you still believe him even though he may have been up to fraud and he's been convicted of a crime? There was a saying as prosecutors that we heard

from the top down when under Morgenthau that even someone who is guilty of robbery in the past or guilty of drug dealing in the past can still be a

victim of a crime.

So, in other words, whether or not you like that person, whether or not you think he's a good person, whether or not you'd want him to be your

neighbor, that's not the question here. The question is, can you find them credible and can you listen to the testimony fairly and objectively, no

matter who they are, no matter where they're from, no matter their history.

HILL: Also interesting to note, the prosecutor also asked if anybody felt that they needed to prove more because of Donald Trump's position, because,

of course, he's the former president. Notably, not a hand was raised among those 18 prospective jurors. Jeremy, appreciate your insight and your

expertise. Thanks for being with us. I want to turn it back now over to Zain who has more with news out of this shocking fire today in Europe.


ASHER: Yeah, that's right. A historic building in Denmark, up in flames. In fact, several pieces of priceless art were saved from destruction after the

building they were in caught fire in Copenhagen. Danish investigators still trying to figure out what exactly caused this blaze at a city's old stock

exchange. The building had a distinctive spire in the shape of four entwined dragons tails until earlier when that fell to the ground. A local

official says the fire was an especially difficult one to fight.


JAKOB VEDSTED ANDERSEN, GREATER COPENHAGEN FIRE AND RESCUE SERVICE: Early this morning, we received an automatic fire alarm at this historic building

at half past eight this morning and upon our arrival, the fire were very intense and we have now been struggling for several hours to secure a part

of the building.

We can also say that nearly half the building is destroyed by fire and this is a very historic building built back in 1620 by King Christian, the

fourth. So, it's a very historic building in Copenhagen and a big part of the Danish inheritance. Everybody's safe. Nobody's hurt in this fire. We

have tried to rescue a lot of historic paintings that was inside the building and the historic furnitures.


ASHER: Yeah, passersby actually helped to rescue some of those paintings and other artifacts from that burning building. All right, still to come.

The heat is turned up on House Speaker Mike Johnson. You'll hear how he's responding to efforts within his own party to take away his job.

And three years after January 6th riot at the U.S. Capitol a Supreme Court case today will determine whether some of the acts committed that day were

actually against the law or not. And later tennis superstar Serena Williams is open to the possibility of owning a WNBA team. Why she says now is the

perfect time to back women's sports.



ASHER: All right, as long -- at long last, U.S. House Speaker Mike Johnson is allowing the House to take up aid to Ukraine and Israel, but he's

keeping the issues separate putting different bills on the floor as some far-right members of his party had demanded. Johnson predicts the House

will vote on the separate bills late Friday, but that still may not be enough to appease hardliners who oppose Ukraine aid and are threatening his

job his speakership. Johnson tells Fox that he's not worried.


MIKE JOHNSON, U.S. HOUSE SPEAKER: I don't worry about the vacate motion at all. I'm here to do my job. I don't think that's going to happen. I think

what a lot of people were concerned about was us being pressed to pass the Senate supplemental again where everything's merged together. Everybody

gets to vote their conscience on each of these measures separately. And I think that resolves the concern. So, no, I'm not worried about that at all.


ASHER: Johnson's fellow Republicans say that he needs to focus on domestic issues before dealing with wars overseas. One of those big issues the

House's impeachment of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas. Lawmakers are expected to send it to the Senate later on Tuesday where

Democratic lawmakers will likely dismiss it. Here's what Republican Marjorie Taylor Greene had to say about that.


I think that Chuck Schumer should agree to hold a trial in the Senate of our articles of impeachment of Secretary Mayorkas before we move on this

package at all, because it's our border that matters. And the House has impeached Secretary Mayorkas and Chuck Schumer needs to hold the trial over

there. So, I think Mike Johnson -- the best thing he can do for America is use this opportunity to force Chuck Schumer in the Senate to hold a trial.


ASHER: House Republicans also want to tie any aid to Ukraine or Israel to a plan to reinforce the U.S. southern border another issue that Democrats

will indeed have to contend with. The U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments today in what might seem like a very technical legal debate. However, it

could have major implications for people charged with taking part in the January 6th attack on the U.S. Capitol and that includes by the way Donald

Trump himself.

At issue is the charge of obstruction of an official proceeding numerous January 6 defendants have been charged with it and it carries a penalty of

up to 20 years in prison.

But lawyers for Joseph Fisher, who faces seven criminal charges related to January 6th say it is being misapplied here. Fisher's attorneys arguing the

law really only deals with tampering or destroying evidence not staging a protest even if it was a violent one.

And it's worth noting that obstruction of an official proceeding is one of the crimes that Donald Trump's has been charged with, as well. CNN's

Marshall Cohen has been tracking the arguments inside the Supreme Court. He joins us live now.

Marshall, this really comes down to how a corporate governance law from the Enron era is being interpreted here. Walk us through that.

MARSHALL COHEN, CNN REPORTER: Yeah, we've come a long way from Enron and probably very few people ever would have anticipated that this specific law

would be used for January 6th, probably because very few people ever predicted that something like January 6th would happen.

The Supreme Court just wrapped up arguments in this high-stakes case. There are 1400 people who have been charged in connection with January 6th and

about a quarter of them are facing this felony obstruction statute. If the Supreme Court decides that this is an improper use of the law, then those

defendants could possibly get some of their charges thrown out, or if they've already been convicted, they could possibly get their sentences



As you mentioned, in addition to those rioters there is former president Donald Trump two of the four crimes that he is accused of committing in his

federal election interference indictment are related to this law. So, if the Supreme Court rules in favor of the January 6th defendants, that could

give Trump additional tools to go after his own defense -- his own indictment. It would not automatically strike down the charges in the Trump

case. I want to be very clear about that.

So, it was a pretty interesting argument today, very technical, very wonky. They were debating about the specific terms in the statute like the phrase

otherwise and whether the statute is broad, whether the statute is narrow.

And I will tell you that having listened to these arguments, it does appear that the conservative justices on this court which comprise a majority of

the court, they were very skeptical of the Justice Department. They very well may be moving in the direction of agreeing with the January 6th

defendants and saying that this is too broad of an application of this law.

As you mentioned in the beginning -- this law was passed by Congress after Enron most of the text of the statute relates to destroying documents,

tampering with documents. The January 6th defendants have made the case that they did not destroy any documents. They did not shred any records.

They were there. They were disruptive, perhaps, but they did not destroy documents and you can't use a documents law against them.

So, we'll see what happens. Sometimes, the oral arguments don't always line up with the final decision. But it looks like the January 6th defendants

may be on their way, some of them to some relief from the U.S. Supreme Court.

ASHER: Even though it is relatively convoluted, just sort of explain to our audience in very layman's terms what the Sarbanes-Oxley Act actually is and

what it actually stipulates. I think that's where a lot of people are getting stuck here.

COHEN: Sure, okay. I've got it for you right here.

ASHER: Okay.

COHEN: I'll read it out. It says -- this statute says that whoever -- there's two parts here. Part one says that whoever corruptly destroys or

conceals a document or attempts to do so to prevent it from being available for an official proceeding has broken the law or whoever otherwise -- part

two -- otherwise obstructs influences or impedes an official proceeding.

The Justice Department is using part two -- the otherwise part to say this is broad this covers a ton of conduct anyone who otherwise obstructs an

official proceeding. And on January 6th, there was an official proceeding which was the congressional certification of the 2020 election results.

The January 6th defendants have said -- part one, which is about the documents, altering documents, mutilating a document, concealing a document

-- they've argued that part two is related to part one and you can't charge them for part two if there were no documents involved. Does that make


ASHER: You did a great job. You did a great job. And as I understand it, Fishers essentially saying that look, this law does not apply to people who

are staging a protest even if it was a violent one. This has to do with tampering evidence. Marshall, thank you so much --

COHEN: Exactly.

ASHER: -- for breaking that down for us. I appreciate it. All right, still to come, the White House dismisses reports that Iran meant to fail when it

launched a series of strikes on Israel.


JOHN KIRBY, NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL COORDINATOR FOR STRATEGIC COMM.: I've seen reporting that the Iranians meant to fail. To coin the phrase from the

President, still phrasing the President, it's malarkey.



ASHER: All right. Right now, it is a waiting game in the Middle East as Israel vows to respond to Iranian strikes on its territory. Israel's war

cabinet has wrapped up its third day of meetings to weigh its options after Tehran launched some 300 drones and missiles at Israel over the weekend.

Iran called that a legitimate defense in retaliation for the bombing of Tehran's consulate in Syria about two weeks ago. The Iranian President

warns any action that strikes at his country's interests would be met with a quote, "severe and extensive and painful response."

Governments around the world are urging restraint and caution. Sources are telling CNN, the U.S. expects any potential military strike by Israel to be

limited in scope. The White House is praising Israel and its allies efforts after the IDF said 99 percent of the projectiles launched by Iran was shot


KIRBY: I've seen reporting that the Iranians meant to fail. This spectacular and embarrassing failure was all by design. I've also seen Iran

say that they provided early warning to help Israel prepare its defenses and limit any potential damage. All of this is categorically false. To coin

the phrase from the President, still phrasing the President, it's malarkey.


ASHER: All right, time now for The Exchange. Joining me live now is Iran expert Karim Sadjadpour. He's a senior associate at the Carnegie Endowment.

He joins us live now from Washington D.C. Karim, thank you so much for being with us. So, how is Iran at this point in time preparing itself for

the likelihood of an Israeli response?

I shouldn't even say likelihood because at this point in time, we know there is going to be an Israeli response. We just don't know when, and we

don't know the scale or the scope. Give us your take on that.

KARIM SADJADPOUR, SENIOR ASSOCIATE, CARNEGIE ENDOWMENT: Well, the Iranian regime has to be incredibly alert right now because there's so many

different possible ways in which Israel could retaliate. Israel could launch strikes against Iran's nuclear programs.

It could go after Iran's military installations. It could go after Iran's oil producing facilities. It could launch cyber attacks, critical

infrastructure inside Iran. Israel could try to incite popular unrest inside Iran. So, they're going to do, obviously, everything they can to be



But I suspect that people are not -- Iranian official there is not sleeping well these days.

ASHER: When we got the news over the weekend about the Iranian response, it -- did it surprise you and mean obviously we knew it was coming this time

around -- but did it surprise you that this time, Iran was actually willing to confront Israel directly instead of using proxies like it normally does

like for example Hezbollah?

SADJADPOUR: It was surprising and that it was unprecedented. All these years, Iran has been attacking Israel via its various regional proxies and

it hasn't launched a strike from -- from its homeland. That was on one hand. On the other hand, they did telegraph that they were planning to do


And I think that Israeli argument now is that if they don't retaliate, Iran will have essentially created a situation in which this is the new normal.

Iran is allowed to attack Israel from its own homeland and there won't be costs to that.

ASHER: Israel is in a tough spot because whatever their response is, it has to be strong and forceful enough to send a very clear message but it has to

be restrained enough that Iran doesn't feel the need to strike back. And I don't even know if that's possible. The Iranian President has come out and

said listen, it doesn't even matter how limited in scope an Israeli attack will be. We are going to respond. Based on that, how does all this end?

SADJADPOUR: Both countries are in very difficult positions because if you look at this Iran -- Israel conflict through a military lens, Israel is far

superior. Israel is Goliath. Iran is David. If you look at it through a geographic lens, Iran has huge advantages. Iran is 70 times the size of

Israel and Iran and its regional proxies are essentially surrounding Israel which is a very small country.

So, a conflict between the two of them doesn't behoove either party. When you -- your question as to how this ends does not unfortunately a happy

answer to that which is in my view, as long as this government is in power in Iran, the Islamic Republic of Iran, it's a revolutionary government

whose pursuits are not the national interests of Iran but a revolutionary ideology opposed to America, opposed to Israel.

At best, we can hope for some type of a detente between the parties. There is not going to be peace between Iran and Israel as long as this government

is in power in Iran. And frankly, I would argue that there's not going to be any lasting, meaningful stability in the Middle East as long as you have

a government in power in Iran that seeks its own stability and the instability of others.

ASHER: I mean there hasn't been peace between Iran and Israel since 1979 since the Iranian Revolution. I do want to talk about the detente that you

mentioned, right? That is what everybody is hoping for. Who are the effective mediators at this point?

I mean, obviously, you've got the U.S. talking to Israel, telling them to sort of, you know, hold your horses here. Don't rush a response. Are the

Qataris the ones who are best suited to mediate and to tamper down any kind of possible response on either side here?

SADJADPOUR: No. I think in addition to the United States which plays an important role on one hand in deterring Iran to make it clear to Iran that

if they escalate and they want a conflict it's not just going to be a conflict against Israel. The United States is going to have to intervene.

That's important. Obviously, the United States plays a restraining role over Israel.

But I would say, the other country that has a major interest here and major influence over Iran is China, there's no government in the world that in

some ways wields more economic and strategic influence over Iran than the government of China. And China shares the same interests as the United

States in the Middle East, which is, they want to see stability and they want to see the free flow of oil.

China, even more than the United States, fears a regional war which disrupts their major oil supplies which come primarily from the Middle

East. So, despite America and China's broader differences here, I think the two countries, Beijing and Washington have an interest and an averting

conflict in the Middle East.

ASHER: How are the Arab countries who are also enemies of Iran, how are they interpreting this moment right now?

SADJADPOUR: The Arab leaderships are in a difficult position, as well, because for the most part, their populations as a result of the war in Gaza

are very angry with Israel these days.


And that's not to say that they're sympathetic toward Iran. But I think, many Arab publics are happy if they can see is -- the government of Israel

get a bloody nose. Arab governments, on the other hand, they don't fear Israel the way they fear the Islamic Republic of Iran because it's Iran

which has launched attacks on these Arab countries either directly or through its proxies.

And I think likewise, these Arab governments, I think they want to see Iran deterred. They wouldn't mind to see Iranian power downgraded but they know

that in the event of a full-blown war between Iran and Israel, Iran is likely to come after them, as well, which includes bombing oil

installations and places like Saudi Arabia or wreaking havoc in places like the UAE, you know.

Dubai is now one of the great economic cities in the world and most of Dubai's inhabitants, the UAE's inhabitants are foreigners. And so, if you

start blowing up buildings in the UAE, if Iran starts doing that, you know, that wreaks major havoc on the economies. And so, these Arab governments

want to see Iran downgraded but they also want to avoid a regional conflict.

ASHER: All right. Karim Sadjadpour, live for us. Thank you so much for sharing your time with us this afternoon.

SADJADPOUR: Thank you, Zain.

ASHER: In the meantime, talks about a ceasefire in Gaza and the release of hostages have appeared to have stalled again. An Israeli source Close

Negotiations tells CNN that Hamas is now offering to release no more than 20 hostages in the first phase of the potential deal. Israel in the U.S.

has said they're expecting 40 to be handed over. The U.S. official says that Hamas is making unreasonable demands such as increasing the number of

Palestinian prisoners that are demands that Israel should release, as well.

The United Nations, meantime, is releasing a startling statistics on the toll this war is taking especially on women and children according to a

statement by U.N. women. Nearly 10,000 women have been killed since October 7th and 60 percent of them were mothers leaving nearly 20,000 children

orphaned and alone.

The statement also says that one child is injured or killed every 10 minutes and those numbers are of course short to rise. The U.N. says more

than one million Palestinian women and girls are currently facing catastrophic hunger with almost no access to food or safe drinking water.

We'll be right back with more.




DONALD TRUMP, REPUBLICAN PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: We got a real problem with this judge. We got a real problem with a lot of things having to do with

this trial.


HILL: Manhattan's top prosecutor Alvin Bragg is in the spotlight and the media glare as he oversees the hush money case against Donald Trump. His

office has faced a surge in threats ever since he indicted Donald Trump on 34 felony counts last year. CNN's Jason Carroll introduces us now to the

man who is the first ever to criminally prosecute a former president.


JASON CARROLL, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Alvin Bragg could be described as a man with a few notable firsts behind his name.


CARROLL (voice-over): He's 50 years old and in 2022, he became the first black Manhattan district attorney and now he's the first to prosecute a

criminal case involving a former U.S. President, Donald Trump. Bragg had a prestigious early start. He attended Trinity School, an elite private

school on Manhattan's Upper West Side. But back in his neighborhood, he says he was often wrongly stopped by police as a teenager. He gave insight

into his experiences during his campaign for office.

BRAGG: When I think about police accountability, I think about the NYPD stopping me three times at gunpoint as a kid. When I think about violent

crime, I think about having a knife to my neck, a semi-automatic weapon to my head and a homicide victim on my doorstep.

CARROLL (voice-over): Bragg's interest in law started early. He graduated from Harvard Law, a 1995 article in the Harvard Crimson credited him for

moderating a discussion between black and Jewish students, calling him the anointed one for his "ability to reconcile diverse people and clashing


Bragg's resume lists a series of prestigious offices. He served as assistant attorney in the Southern District of New York, a top lawyer in

the New York Attorney General's Office, a professor of the New York Law School Racial Justice Project.

That's where he represented the family of Eric Garner. The family sued the city after a plain-clothed officer put him in an unauthorized chokehold

after he was caught selling loose cigarettes. Garner's death in 2014 sparked outrage and protests nationwide.

CARROLL: Bragg credits his interest in police reform to his years growing up here in Harlem, where he says once again, he was unfairly stopped by

police as a child. His mother was a teacher, his father, a social worker, according to "The New York Times".

CARROLL (voice-over): And Bragg now taking on his highest profile case to date. His case against the former president underway.

BRAGG: These are felony crimes in New York State. No matter who you are, we cannot and will not normalize serious criminal conduct.

CARROLL (voice-over): Bragg, who is a Democrat making good on a campaign promise to make Trump a priority.

BRAGG: I'm ready to go wherever the facts take me. I believe we have to hold him accountable.

CARROLL (voice-over): Trump has called his trial political persecution and has repeatedly directed his anger at Bragg, someone he's called an "animal"

and a "degenerate".

TRUMP: The racist Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg, who is presiding over one of the most dangerous and violent cities in the United States --

CARROLL (voice-over): Jason Carroll, CNN, New York.


HILL: And that's going to do it for me this hour here in lower Manhattan. Zain, I'll hand it back over to you in the studio.

ASHER: All right, thanks, Erica. All right. Parts of Dubai are underwater right now. This, after a year's worth of rain fell there in just a 12 hour

period. That is, by the way, 100 millimeters. Dubai International Airport is normally the world's second busiest airport. But today, part of the

tarmac are underwater and inbound flights have actually been temporarily suspended. Here's the problem.

Dubai and the rest of the UAE are normally very dry. So, the infrastructure to handle this sort of deluge simply is not there. The airport says it is

working to restore minimal operations. CNN meteorologists say the dry weather returns on Wednesday. All right, still to come here. Tennis star

Serena Williams talks to CNN about why now is the perfect time to support female athletes.


SERENA WILLIAMS, TENNIS STAR AND ENTREPRENEUR: Time to lift up other sports, women's soccer, women's basketball. Women's sport is exciting.

Women are exciting to watch.



ASHER: The Olympic torch relay is underway ahead of the summer games in Paris. The torch lighting ceremony took place in the ancient city of

Olympia in Greece. Earlier, it is the birthplace of the game, dating back to 776 B.C. The flame will now be carried through Greece for 11 days. As

far as Athens will be handed over to organizers of the Paris Games.

All right, Serena Williams knows what it's like to win Olympic gold. And now that she has moved on from her professional tennis career, Williams is

now helping to lift up female athletes in other sports. She spoke to CNN's Amanda Davis about this and the possibility of investing in a WNBA team one

day. Take a listen.


AMANDA DAVIES, CNN WORLD SPORT: What have you made of this moment for college basketball and women's college basketball?

WILLIAMS: Yeah, I think the moment's been happening. We just needed the right catalyst and the right people. And I think that's kind of been

happening over the past two years. And I think women's sport is having a moment that it should have always had. You know, I feel like tennis has had

its moment and it's been, it's international and it's huge and it's always going to be there.

Now, it's like time to lift up other sports, women's soccer, women's basketball. Like there's so many other sports that women do so great. Let's

put it on that platform that tennis is on, you know, and I feel like it's women's basketball is getting there and it's, it's arrived and that's, you

know, super excited.

DAVIES: Could a WNBA team be added to your roster and the ownership stakes? Would you be interested?

WILLIAMS: I know, right? I absolutely would be. I think with the right market, you know, I think I would definitely be super interested in that.

DAVIES: You've very proudly embraced the ownership role in sports. And I'm interested to know, do you still think there is that, do people feel the

risk factor investing in women and women in sports still? Or are we now finally over that hurdle?

WILLIAMS: I mean, there is no risk. You know, there's -- women's sport is exciting. Women are exciting to watch. More people watched the women's

basketball in college than the men. So, I think that people are realizing that it's exciting to watch. And so, it's an overly safe bet to me when it

comes to investing.


ASHER: As you just heard, excitement for women's basketball is certainly at an all-time high here in the U.S. And now the top college player has made

her move to the pros.


UNKNOWN: With the first pick in the 2024 WNBA draft, the Indiana Fever select Caitlin Clark, University of Iowa.


ASHER: Very exciting time for Clark there. She transitions from college basketball to the pros. Here's how she reacted to her big career move.


CAITLIN CLARK, SELECTED AS WNBA NUMBER ONE DRAFT PICK: I've dreamed of this moment since I was in second grade and it's taken a lot of hard work, a lot

of ups and downs, but more than anything, just trying to soak it in.

My parents always instilled confidence in me from a young age, when I was a young girl. And I think that's something a lot of young girls can learn to

have. And I think people supporting them certainly help. So, yeah, I think the biggest thing is the confidence. But I told my mom before this is like,

you know, I earned it and that's why I'm so proud of it.


ASHER: Oh, the buzz around Clark comes with a lot of expectations and the potential for even bigger audiences. The WNBA says 36 of the Fever's 40

games will be featured by the league's national broadcast and streaming partners.

All right. That does it for this hour of "One World". I'm Zain Asher. Thank you so much for watching. Amanpour is up next.