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Quest Means Business

Trump Faces Fourth Indictment; Biden Touts Jobs Gains Despite Economic Headwinds; Poland Moves Troops to Belarus Border; Trump Criminally Charged in Fourth Indictment This Year; Two Years Since the Fall of Kabul; Hackers Take on Holes in AI Infrastructure. Aired 3-4p ET

Aired August 15, 2023 - 15:00   ET



LYNDA KINKADE, CNN INTERNATIONAL HOST: Wall Street is under pressure. The Dow down around 300 points, falling bank stocks are largely to blame. Those

are the markets and these are the main events.

Prosecutors in Georgia accuse Donald Trump of leading a criminal enterprise in an historic fourth indictment.

China's youth unemployment numbers have gotten so bad Beijing says it will stop recording them.

And the biggest companies in AI invite hackers to try to outsmart their chatbots. We will show you the results.

Live from Atlanta, it is Tuesday, August 15th. I'm Lynda Kincaid, in for Richard Quest and this is QUEST MEANS BUSINESS.

Good evening.

Tonight, Donald Trump is lashing out as he faces a fourth criminal indictment, this one, in the US state of Georgia. A grand jury here accuses

the former president and 18 others of conspiring to overturn the 2020 election results.

His former attorney, Rudy Giuliani and Mark Meadows, the former White House chief-of-staff are among the co-defendants.

All of them are being required to surrender to Georgia authorities by Friday, August 25th no later than noon.

Marshall Cohen is in Washington following the developments for us and joins us live.

Marshall, good to have you with us.

So this is the fourth indictment after a two-year investigation, and it is not just Trump facing charges here, but his allies, including his chief-of-

staff, his legal team, and some Republican officials here in Georgia.

Could this case be the most consequential for Trump so far?

MARSHALL COHEN, CNN REPORTER: It might be. It's definitely the most sweeping case brought against the former president.

As you mentioned, it is reaching the upper echelon of the Trump White House. His former chief-of-staff, Mark Meadows. Some of his most trusted

attorneys and longtime advisers like Rudy Giuliani and others, members of the campaign, but it is so much bigger than the Trump White House and the

Trump campaign.'

This indictment alleges several different elements of a multi-pronged scheme to overturn the election. There was the phone calls that Donald

Trump placed to his top officials in Georgia trying to twist their arms to flip the votes. There was the fake electors plot to try to subvert the

Electoral College.

The indictment also alleges intimidation of election workers, trying to persuade them to falsely admit that they had committed fraud, and even a

breach of an election voting system in a rural county in Georgia by Trump supporters who were trying to prove the fraud.

Lynda, it all ties back to the Big Lie from 2020 that the election here was stolen, it was not, and the attempt by Trump and these 18 other defendants

to overturn that defeat, that is the basis of this landmark indictment in Fulton County in Atlanta.

KINKADE: And Marshall, one of the most serious charges in this indictment is of course the racketeering charge, which comes with a five-year

mandatory minimum if convicted. What are the next steps? What happens next? Because I understand the prosecutors want to push things along.

COHEN: They do. The district attorney, Fani Willis, gave a press conference last night right around midnight, really, really milking the clock here of

this incredibly long day with the grand jury hearing testimony and then casting votes, and then finally unsealing the indictment.

District Attorney Fani Willis, she said she wants to have this thing go to trial within the next six months. That's incredibly ambitious, Lynda. I am

certain that many of the defendants are going to be lodging a ton of legal challenges between now and then.

She also said in response to a question from our colleague, Sara Murray, that she wants to try all 19 defendants together as co-defendants. That

means former President Trump at the defendant table with these other 18 individuals. Surely, they will try to fight that, prevent that because it

could make their legal defenses complicated.

She is going full speed ahead, the DA. Of course, it is going to be up to a judge to set this timing, set the schedule, and Lynda, this is just one of

four potential criminal trials that Donald Trump might be facing while he is campaigning for the 2024 presidential race.

KINKADE: Yes, four trials, over 90 charges. Marshall Cohen, thanks so much for joining us.

And these charges of was for Trump are for violating the state's racketeering laws, as we were just discussing, and this law is commonly

used to prosecute people accused of associating with gangs or organized crime.


It claims that the president's efforts were part of a broad illegal conspiracy, and accuses him and his allies of harassing election workers,

creating fake documents, and much more.

CNN legal analyst, Joey Jackson joins us with more.

Joey, good to see you.


KINKADE: There are so many questions, so little time, but I want to start with that racketeering charge first, because this seems unusual. This is

typically a charge used to convict drug cartels, mobsters, right?

JACKSON: So it absolutely is, and it is good to be with you.

And so the reality is, is that you have the prosecutor using it here, and it may be, you know, when we look at a charge like this, yes, it is for

mobsters. But essentially, that is what she is saying, the prosecutor, that you ran a criminal enterprise, and in that criminal enterprise, it was very

far ranging, very broad.

You had a number of people who were carrying out the conspiracy. What is a conspiracy? It's when two or more minds meet, and they engage in steps to

have crimes committed. And what were those crimes? A crime, the core, was to really overturn this election.

And so this was a very broad-ranging type of program that they were following in order to supplement electors. Georgia has 16 electors, long

story, Electoral College, et cetera.

But the reality is, is that they were supplanting real with fake, attempting to do that. They were looking at people who were really having

an oath of office, public officials, state legislatures, and trying to get them to avoid that, of course, looking to the vice president of the United

States to do that, trying to intimidate election workers, breaking into a computer system software as it relates to votes -- and so a number of

things that should not have been done.

The electoral process is pretty sacrosanct, right? I mean, you have to respect it. What this indictment alleges, is that Mr. Trump and these 18

others did not respect that process, and it goes through, Lynda, chapter and verse with regard to the activities they engaged in as we looked at

them there to circumvent the electoral process.

So it's a significant development, and quite frankly, I think it's something that the president and those that we see there need to be very

concerned about, particularly because of the consequences associated with a conviction.

KINKADE: And Joey, in this case, the Fulton County district attorney here in Georgia wants to try all of these defendants at the same time, starting

in about six months. Is that likely to happen?

JACKSON: So it's not likely for the following reasons, right? We never know anything with certainty, but what happens is, when you have 18 defendants,

the general experience is that of that 18, they get pared down very readily.

Well, how does that happen? The first way it happens is that there are people where the evidence is so compelling, and this is just an indictment;

an indictment in the United States is an accusation. It's an accusation that suggests that there is probable cause to believe that you engaged in

criminality, right, the targets of the investigation did.

It's not proof beyond any reasonable doubt, et cetera, far different. However, having said that, what happens is sometimes the evidence as we

look at all the charges Mr. Trump is facing, are so compelling that of the 18, you may have those who take pleas, right, that means a plea bargain, I

plead guilty, you got me. Nothing to see here and I'm doing it now because I want some leniency.

Then you have another paring who want to take pleas, maybe the prosecutor will not allow them unless they turn state's evidence, meaning you're going

to cooperate, that pares it down further. Then you have defense lawyers who make what's called Lynda, a motion to sever, that means I want my client

separated from everybody else because he deserves a fair trial, and if he is lumped in with everyone else, the reality is birds of a feather flock

together, jury will get the wrong impression, he'll get convicted.

So there'll be a lot of motions made to pare it down from the practical realities it will be pared down, and in a six-month process, that's very

aggressive, it is very ambitious. Never say never, but I don't know the likelihood and practicality of that actually occurring.

KINKADE: Is there any sort of practical way we would see a plea deal involving Donald Trump where he vows not to run for public office?

JACKSON: You know, it's a great question, and I think it's something that him and his team need to look at very seriously. I think those around him

and those who know him would suggest that he doesn't plea to anything, he fights to the bitter end. He fights, you know, fire with fire, no way, no

retreat, no surrender, but I'll tell you why that is a very serious consideration, and if the lawyer sat down with him, he may fire them for

making the recommendation, but let me tell you why it's valuable.

When you look at the federal indictments in the event the president got elected, Lynda, he might be able to pardon himself. It's an open question

as to whether the president has that authority, however, right, it is a broad ranging authority, the pardon power and so the president could pardon

himself. That gets through now those two federal cases.

From the state perspective, you have the Manhattan case and now you have the Georgia case, far different. You cannot pardon yourself, right, on a

state charge if you're president, and Georgia has very strict pardon rules that it's not even decided by the Republican governor.

Why is all of that relevant?


It's relevant because if you get convicted because of the consequences, you face the five-year mandatory minimum. That means no discretion. The judge,

they may love you, they can't. The legislature has said, you get convicted, you're doing five years in jail, minimum up to 20.

And so you have to think long and hard as to whether or not you should take that deal and move forward. I think the president is banking upon delay,

delay, delay, delay, and in the event he becomes president, this would really take a backseat. He may never be tried on this case because of the

timeline and I think that's also a calculus he is considering too, as he weighs what he should do and his legal team tries to defend it.

KINKADE: So Joe, just quickly. Under what circumstances would this state case in Georgia move to a federal court?

JACKSON: So what happens is, if there are issues of federal questions, issues relating to constitutionality, issues relating to you know why it

should be in the interest of justice taken from one court into another court, then perhaps the court will entertain it. But understand that that

was tried in Manhattan, meaning that argument to move it to a federal court, it failed. Georgia separate state, separate circumstances.

But remember that you have 50 states in the United States, and each state is a sovereign. They have their own rules, their own laws. They are

governed by them, and so to what extent should a state not be independent? And why would the federal government take authority and jurisdiction over

something that is a violation of state law?

So there may be constitutional questions and principles which implicate federal statutes, federal laws, but at its core, these are alleged federal

violations of law, excuse me state violations of law, and as a result of that, Lynda, the argument will be it should stay with the state of Georgia.

KINKADE: Absolutely. All right, Joey Jackson, we will be speaking again soon, no doubt. Good to have you with us, as always, thanks.

JACKSON: Looking forward. Thanks, Lynda.

KINKADE: Well, US markets are lower Tuesday. The Dow is down nearly 300 points, and bank stocks are falling after a Fitch analyst reportedly warned

of a ratings downgrade.

Meanwhile, President Biden is expressing optimism about the US economy. He spoke in Milwaukee around the anniversary of his Inflation Reduction Act

and said his policies are working.


JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: "The Financial Times" and "The Wall Street Journal" started calling my plan not initially as a compliment,

Bidenomics, but guess what, folks? They are talking about it differently now. It's working.

We've added more jobs in two years than any president has in American history in a four-year term. More in two than any has done in four.


KINKADE: Well, disappointing data out of China has been pushing markets down there this week. Surveys of industrial production and retail sales

both came in lower than expected. And China's Central Bank made a surprise interest rate cut, lowering its key rate to 2.5 percent.

On top of all of that, youth unemployment soaring to record highs, and now Beijing says it's going to stop even reporting those figures, at least for


Michelle Toh reports from Hong Kong.


MICHELLE TOH, CNN REPORTER: China has just stopped releasing youth unemployment data after it hit back-to-back record highs over a wider slump

in the economy.

The National Bureau of Statistics announced the suspension on Tuesday, which quickly led to criticism and ridicule on Chinese social media.

Now previously, the bureau had put out this data, which looks at the urban unemployment rates for 16 to 24-year-olds every month. Now officials are

saying the methodology of these statistics needs some work.

On Tuesday, Fu Linghui, a spokesman for the National Bureau of Statistics said young people are now spending more time in school. So there's debate

over whether students looking for jobs before graduation should be included in this data. It needs further research, he added.

The bureau will now conduct in-depth research to improve its methodology and will once again start releasing the data once the process is completed,

he said, without giving any timeframe.

Now, this news immediately started trending online, with some critics suggesting this was an excuse by China to detract from data it doesn't want

more attention on. After all, China's youth unemployment rate has had consecutive record highs lately.

From April to June, it shot up to 20.4 percent, 20.8 percent, and 21.3 percent respectively, for 16 to 24-year-old, figures that have caused huge

concern as more than 11 million college grads look for work this year.

Also on Tuesday, China released new data that pointed to a slowdown on multiple fronts including consumer spending, factory production and

investment in fixed assets.

Now policymakers have taken some steps to help support the economy, but economists say that much more needs to be done.

Michelle Toh, CNN, Hong Kong.


KINKADE: Well, still to come, a show of force in Poland, a key NATO ally sends a message to Russia. What's behind this historic military parade in

Warsaw, that story next.



KINKADE: Russia's Central Bank has raised interest rates to a whopping 12 percent. That's a hike of 3.5 percentage points, a drastic measure to try

and support Russia's battered currency, the ruble.

CNN's Clare Sebastian has the details from London.


CLARE SEBASTIAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Russia's Central Bank hasn't had to scramble like this since the first month of the war, and this was an

emergency measure. The next pre-planned rate decision wasn't supposed to be until mid-September and with the ruble touching 17-month lows, it clearly

felt they couldn't wait that long.

And three-and-a-half percent in one go was suddenly not a half measure. That's because the Central Bank says inflation is up above the four percent

target and accelerating some of the factors that have so far insulated the Russian economy from this war are high energy prices, emergency Central

Bank measures to prevent a capital flight have now been reversed. The Wagner mutiny in June also shook the currency market.

Right now, according to the Central Bank, supply is not keeping up with demand in Russia and that is driving imports higher at the same time as

export revenues are down partly of course, because of sanctions and lower oil prices.

This was a risky move in some ways. A weaker ruble was good for exports and higher interest rates will be felt by the Russian people, but the weaker

ruble is also a potential threat, not only to financial, but to political stability, an unwelcome signal to the population that Fortress Russia isn't

invincible, something Moscow couldn't risk if it's going to keep up public support for this increasingly costly war.

Clare Sebastian, CNN, London.


KINKADE: Well, Poland is holding its biggest military parade in decades. It's a pointed show of force as tensions rise along the country's border

with Belarus. Thousands of troops marching alongside hundreds of pieces of equipment. Since Russia first annexed the Ukrainian peninsula of Crimea

back in 2014, Poland has devoted billions of dollars to the sort of weaponry put out on display today.

President Duda proclaiming that Poland is in a better position than ever to defend itself.


ANDRZEJ DUDA, POLISH PRESIDENT (through translator): The success of the NATO Summit in Warsaw in 2016 meant that the eastern flank of the Alliance

was strengthened.

Over the past eight years, the presence of NATO troops in Poland has increased.


In 2015, only a few hundred allied soldiers stayed in our country temporarily. Now, it is several thousand soldiers, including the permanent

presence of the United States Army.

Our security cooperation with the United States has never been as good as it is today.


KINKADE: Michal Sznajder from the Polish news channel, TVN 24 joins us now from Warsaw. Good to have you with us.

So this was the biggest military parade that Poland has put on since the Cold War. There are NATO members suddenly flexing its military muscle. Just

explain what sort of weaponry was on display today.

MICHAL SZNAJDER, SENIOR ANCHOR AND POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT, TVN 24: Good evening, Lynda. Thank you very much for having me.

It is exactly as you said, this was the biggest military parade in Poland since the Cold War, but it has to be noted that this is an annual event.

This was not some special one-off. This is something that happens every year. It was put on hold for a few years due to the pandemic and due to

Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

And today in Warsaw, there were 2,000 service members; there were 200 items of equipment; there were 92 aircrafts present, and on display were Abrams

tanks bought from the United States, South Korean K-2 tanks, K-9 self- propelled howitzers, HIMARS rocket launchers and Patriot air defense systems.

Also FA-50 combat aircraft, AW-101 chopper, also Polish-made Borsuk infantry fighting vehicles and Rosomak armored personnel carriers. They

were things that are in the Polish arsenal, they have been here for decades, things that have only recently arrived to Poland and equipment

that has only just been ordered, but has not been taken delivery of just yet.

So this was of course, the biggest parade of this sort in many years and also present were allies from the United States, from the United Kingdom,

from Croatia, and from other countries as well.

KINKADE: And of course, Michal, Poland has boosted its numbers of troops along its border with Belarus, which is of course, a key Russian ally.

As far as military powers in Europe go, where does Poland stand right now?

SZNAJDER: Well, the ambition is for the Polish army to be pretty much -- the Polish Armed Forces to be the strongest in Europe. Poland plans to

spend four percent of its GDP on defense, and the ultimate goal is even to spend five percent of GDP that would be the highest level in NATO. Poland

does have a target of having 300 soldiers in 2035. That will be 250,000 professional soldiers and 50,000 Territorial Defense Forces.

The government says Poland will have the most powerful land forces in Europe. The Polish Army must be so powerful that it does not have to even

fight due to its strength alone, that the size and the equipment will be such a deterrent, that absolutely no one will even think about crossing the

border, the Polish border, or attacking Poland.

This spending has, of course intensified after Russia attacked Ukraine, and it must be said that some three-quarters, more than 70 percent of Poles

believe that the war in Ukraine, that Russia has, of course, provoked it, it has begun, that that war does threaten the Polish security.

Also, it is being said that Poland perhaps wants to kind of change its image or perhaps the law and just as government wants to change its image

change the narrative, no longer being the bad boy, if you will, of European politics, often accused of destroying the rule of law and eroding

democratic values, but instead wanting to be seen as a military superpower and a potential regional leader.

KINKADE: And just politically, locally, there is obviously an election coming up in Poland. How is this sort of display of military might playing

out there for the government?

SZNAJDER: Well, that's an extremely interesting question, Lynda, because perhaps I touched upon that earlier, that the government, of course, is

trying to send a signal to the Polish people, that you are safe. We are investing in the military. We are modernizing our special -- our forces,

our military, our equipment, but also that is a message being sent to exactly as you said to the Polish voters.

This is August 15, so exactly in two months, that election will take place and many commentators, among them members of the military -- former members

of the military -- are saying that the armed forces are being used as a backdrop for the political purposes of the government.

Arguably, the most important, the most influential Polish politician, Yaroslav Kaczynski, the leader of the Law and Justice Party attacked the

leader of largest opposition party, Donald Tusk, while soldiers were standing behind him.


And the opposition lawmakers are accusing the government of instrumentalizing the military for its own political gain. One of the

opposition lawmakers wrote to the soldiers saying, I wish you that you never again have to provide a background for political hatred and also

certain former generals who are no longer in the military, they are also saying that increasingly, the Polish Armed Forces are becoming something of

a political prop during this parliamentary campaign.

KINKADE: Yes, so, certainly a message domestically, but also internationally to Russia.

Michal Sznajder, good to have you with us. Thank you.

Well, video obtained exclusively by CNN shows a Ukrainian sea drone hitting the bridge that connects the Russian mainland to occupied Crimea. Details

of last month's strike follows claims by Russian officials that they foiled an attack on that bridge over the weekend.

CNN's Nick Paton Walsh has more from Ukraine.


NICK PATON WALSH, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice over): It's become the most beleaguered symbol of Russian occupation. This weekend,

Moscow saying this incident was just a smokescreen, foiling a Ukrainian attack on the $4 billion Kerch Bridge, the link between Russia and occupied

Crimea that Putin seems to dote on.

Now CNN has obtained exclusive footage, heralding a new way of warfare of another earlier devastating Ukrainian seaborne drone strike there in July

from the Ukrainian Security Services, the SBU who say they did it and more will follow.

This is exactly what the drone pilots saw, thermal imagery, the water rippling as up to a ton of explosive approaches the bridge. The feed, then

obviously went dead as it hit the concrete.

Russian officials said two civilians died in the attack. Cameras on the bridge captured the first blast on the road section, the cursor shows the

drone moving in, and another on the railway tracks at about the same time.

Ukraine has been coy, some officials saying these huge blasts are from "an identified floating object," but no longer. The head of the Ukrainian

Security Services told CNN this is just the start.

VASYL MAILUK, HEAD OF SBU (through translator): Sea-surface drones are unique invention of the Security Service of Ukraine. None of the private

companies are involved. Using these drones, we have recently conducted successful hits to the Crimean bridge, a biggest assault ship, Olenegorsky

Gornyak and SIG tanker.

WALSH (voice over): This, another Ukrainian drone attack on the Russian amphibious assault boat, the Olenegorsky Gorniak on which Ukrainian

officials said, a hundred personnel were on board.

It was a remarkable feat carried out by a growing fleet of what they call the sea babies.

Hundreds of miles away from Ukrainian bases, and right in Russia's coastal heartland, it put the Black Seas east suddenly at risk.

MAILUK (through translator): These drones are produced and an underground production facility in Ukraine. We are working on a number of new

interesting operations including in the Black Sea waters. I promise you, it will be exciting, especially for our enemies.

WALSH (voice over): Ukraine's ingenuity again and again, toppling the lumbering Russian Goliath.

Nick Paton Walsh, CNN, Dnipro, Ukraine.


KINKADE: Well, coming up, we're going to return to our top story: Donald Trump facing a fourth indictment. He is trying to capitalize on that news





KINKADE (voice-over): There is much more QUEST MEANS BUSINESS in a moment.

Locals are asking for help to recover from the devastating wildfires.

At the world's largest hacking conference, hackers are asked to trick a chatbot. We show you how that went.

Before that these are the headlines this hour.


KINKADE (voice-over): An investigation is underway in Russia after an explosion at a gas station killed at least 35 people. It happened in the

southern region of Dagestan. Authorities say a fire broke out at a car repair shop before spreading to the gas station. At least 80 other people

were injured.

Evacuation warnings have been issued for more than 237,000 people across Japan. Typhoon Lan made landfall in southwest Japan early Tuesday. Winds

were measured at nearly 160 kilometers an hour. That is like a category 2 hurricane.

Spain is celebrating its stunning win over Sweden for a place in the Women's World Cup final. All three goals were scored in the game's last 10

minutes. This is Spain's first Women's World Cup final and they will face either co-host Australia or England this Sunday.

And rescue at sea for Australian surfers found after spending more than 38 hours at sea. They went missing when their boat was hit by a storm off the

coast of Sumatra. An Indonesian crew member on the boat is still missing. A search vessel found the other six sitting on their surfboards.


KINKADE: Returning to our top story, Donald Trump is seeking to capitalize on his fourth indictment in a fund raising email. Donations to his

presidential campaign spiked after his first indictment and arraignment in Manhattan.

He later saw a smaller bump after his second indictment and although many believe his ability to raise money after indictments is waning, his support

to be the Republican presidential nominee has largely held steady. CNN Politics senior reporter Stephen Collinson joins us now.

Good to see you, Stephen. Trump is now facing 91 charges in four different criminal indictments. And at least one Republican analyst is saying that

the accumulated indictments are like white noise for most Republicans.

Is the general public following this closely?

Is this having any sort of political impact for him, negatively or positively?

STEPHEN COLLINSON, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: I would agree with that white noise comment. Among Republicans, who have already decided Donald

Trump is a victim of political persecution, I don't think a fourth indictment is going to have and appreciable difference to a first

indictment politically.


COLLINSON: And certainly, if you go outside Washington or New York, the elite media and political circles, the whole question of American democracy

in peril isn't really a question at the top of a lot of people's minds.

People are concerned about their pensions, gasoline prices, the impact of months of high interest rates on their budgets. So that's what people are

really thinking about. That could change as the election gets a lot closer.

We are basically, you know, more than a year away from the general election. So I don't think that, although this is a massive story in

Washington, it is what everyone's thinking about in the United States all the time. So I don't really expect it will change the political equation

right now, at least.

KINKADE (voice-over): But in terms of fundraising, as we were speaking about yesterday, after each indictment, we do see that the Trump campaign

has a fund raising boost. It is a windfall.

Can we expect that, the same time around, for this fourth indictment?

COLLINSON: I think it shows how far through the looking glass we've gone politically in the United States, that each indictment is now being

portrayed by Donald Trump as a political asset rather than a liability.

Any other politician, pretty much in any other country in the world, I think, would have been felled by at least the first or second indictments,

especially, given what the second one and the third one were for, basically abuse of presidential power in not so many words.

So judging by all of these fundraising emails I'm getting in my inbox, Donald Trump is trying to make sure that he uses this to his advantage

again. And, of course, he needs to because he's using a lot of the money not just for his campaign but to pay his legal bills and some of his

associates. So he needs to keep the money rolling in.

KINKADE: And of course, when we listen to Trump's response to each of these indictments, he's arguing that they are politically motivated, that this is

all just a witch hunt.

Is that an argument he can or will make in court?

Or is that just political rhetoric?

COLLINSON: He's already making the argument in court. Down in Florida in the classified documents case, his lawyers argue that he was a victim of

political persecution by the Biden administration and that he couldn't get a fair trial during the election.

And they wanted the trial to take place after the election. In the case in Washington, D.C., they're trying to move it out of diverse, Democratic,

Washington, because they say he won't get a fair trial with an untainted jury pool there.

And they want to move it to West Virginia, one of the most conservative states in the union, where Trump won with 70 percent of the vote in 2020.

This is the fundamental plank of their campaign, that this was all political.

This can work, I think, in a political context outside the courtroom. But the standards of evidence are much stricter inside the courtroom. I think

you're seeing a lot of the judges, in these cases, trying to keep politics out.

The judge in Washington, D.C., in the January 6 last week, talked about how Donald Trump's day job, i.e. running for president, couldn't take

precedence over the fact he was a criminal defendant.

So this is all political. Basically, the entire U.S. political campaign before the next election right now is bound up in Donald Trump's trials,

one way or the other. His defense is essentially the same as his campaign, to win another term in the White House.

Until he loses the Republican nomination, if that were to happen, that is going to be the way it is. So politics is at the center of this.

KINKADE: Yes. And it is interesting to note, as these charges stack up and these indictments continue, he still has a majority support from most

Republican politicians and even other presidential candidates. We'll leave it there for now. Stephen Collinson, thanks so much for being with us.

President Biden says now Hawaii will get every asset it needs to recover from the deadly and devastating wildfires there. Moody's says the fires

could cost Maui up to $7.5 billion. That estimate includes huge amounts of property damage and lost economic activity.

Speaking in the last hour, the president committed to assisting the island ahead of his coming visit.


JOE BIDEN (D), PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I've spoken to Governor Josh Green multiple times and reassured him his state will have everything it

needs from the federal government.

I immediately approved the governor's request for an exponent (ph) major disaster declaration. That is a fancy word for saying, whatever you need,

you are going to get.

And that will get aid into the hands of people who desperately need it, who've lost their loved ones, who've lost their homes, their livelihoods,

that have been damaged and destroyed.


KINKADE: It has been two years since the Taliban took over Afghanistan. The transition has weighed the heaviest on women and girls. We'll have that

story, next.





KINKADE: Welcome back. Now today marks two years since the Taliban took power in Afghanistan, throwing the country's future into doubt. Since then,

Afghans have suffered from emergency food shortages, malnutrition and prolonged drought.

Despite promises to be lenient, Taliban leaders are steadily cracking down on human rights. As CNN's Anna Coren reports, no one's paying a higher

price than women and girls.


ANNA COREN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Today marks the second anniversary of Taliban rule in Afghanistan. To celebrate, the Taliban have announced a

public holiday.

For the girls and women of this country, this is no celebration. Each day, they are facing extreme repression and have now become prisoners in their

own homes. The U.N. says the Taliban is implementing a system of total discrimination, exclusion and subjugation of women and girls.

Afghan women's rights activists are calling the hardline stance of the Taliban as a war against women. We spoke to a university student inside

Afghanistan, who says there is no future for the women of her country.

COREN (voice-over): In the corner of her room, on a piece of string, hanging by paper clips, are the treasured memories of a 20 year old Zahra.

ZAHRA, AFGHAN UNIVERSITY STUDENT: They are my favorite people that I have them in my life.

COREN (voice-over): Photos, drawings, mementos. A secret world of a life once lived that this Afghan university student now grieves for.

ZAHRA: When I stand in front of the mirror, when I look at myself I just see a different Zahra from two years ago.

COREN (voice-over): On the 15th of August, 2021, Zahra's life as she knew it was shattered. The Taliban swept to power after the U.S. withdrawal from

Afghanistan following its 20-year war.

Handing back control to the same group of Islamic extremists who ruled in the 1990s. While the Taliban promised to be more moderate and honor women's

rights within Islamic law, the past two years have brought only a hard line stance toward women.

The closure of secondary schools for girls, the forced implementation of the burqa, the restriction on travel without a male chaperone, the banning

of women from universities and working at NGOs, including the United Nations.

And, just last month, the Taliban closed all beauty salons --


COREN (voice-over): -- that employed roughly 60,000 women, many of them the sole breadwinners of their homes.

MAHBOUBA SERAJ, AFGHAN WOMEN'S RIGHTS ACTIVIST: Women's freedom doesn't exist. There is no such thing as women's freedom anymore.

COREN (voice-over): women's rights activist Mahbouba Seraj, who stayed in Kabul while more than a million Afghans fled, says the Taliban government

is erasing women from society.

SERAJ: Even the rights that we had in Islam, even the rights that we had in Sharia, we are losing all of that. So if it's not annihilation, what is it?

COREN (voice-over): For Zahra, an aspiring designer, it is very clear what the Taliban demands of her.

ZAHRA: Just to stay at home, get married, you have to give birth to children, that's it. And this is your life, this is what women are made


COREN (voice-over): While the international community repudiates the Taliban's treatment of women and girls, the Taliban is refusing to listen,

saying it will not be pressured.

BILAL KARIMI, TALIBAN DEPUTY SPOKESPERSON (through translator): Afghanistan was freed from occupation. Afghans were able to regain their country,

freedom, government and will. The only way to solve the problem is understanding and dialogue, pressure and force are not logical.

COREN (voice-over): But human rights activists fear that international condemnation is waning and that the Taliban, desperate for international

recognition, is gradually being normalized.

HEATHER BARR, ASSOCIATE DIRECTOR, WOMEN'S RIGHTS DIVISION, HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH: They are posing in photographs with smiling diplomats. They're

getting on private jets to fly off to important, high-level meetings where people roll out red carpets for them.

They are being permitted to take control of embassies in a growing number of countries. So I think, you know, from their perspective it is going

pretty well.

COREN (voice-over): A terrifying assessment for the women of this country. Protests have all but disappeared, apart from a small group who face the

threat of arrest as they try to get the world's attention. For most, they suffer in silence. Convinced that the world no longer cares.

ZAHRA: If it continues like this, the future, not only for me but also for other girls, it is horrible and it is disaster.

COREN: CNN spoke to Taliban deputy spokesperson Bilal Karimi (ph). He proudly listed the Taliban's achievements, such as restoring security and

cracking down on drug addicts and the opium trade.

When we asked him about girls' education, he was very evasive, refusing to say when girls will be allowed back to school or university. All he said

was that the Taliban needs to wait for the environment to become favorable.

It is important to note that this was the very same line that the Taliban gave back in the 1990s when they ruled for five years. In that time, girls

were never allowed to return to school.


KINKADE: Thanks to Anna Coren for the report.

Thousands of hackers gathered this weekend to try to break AI chatbots. And the companies behind those bots are thankful for it. We'll talk about how

hacking for good when we come back.





KINKADE: Welcome back.

The biggest companies in AI invited thousands of hackers to try to outsmart their chatbots this weekend. It was part of DEF CON, the world's largest

hacking conference.

The task before them was to trick the chatbots into doing things they shouldn't, like generating fake news, making defamatory statements and

giving up potentially dangerous information. Donie O'Sullivan was at DEF CON and joins us now from New York.

Good to see you.

Obviously, the question about whether artificial intelligence will destroy humanity and whether it'll take over the world has been a question and a

conspiracy that's been discussed well before the launch of AI. You went to this hacking conference where so-called ethical hackers were asked to, kind

of, test these chatbots.

What did you find?

DONIE O'SULLIVAN, CNN TECH CORRESPONDENT: Exactly. This is a pretty common tactic in the cybersecurity world, of right teaming. Essentially you have

these hackers who try to attack your systems to see where they can be vulnerable.

When it comes to AI, the chatbots like ChatGPT that we all know are supposed to have guardrails in place where they're not supposed to do

certain things. And this weekend, in Vegas, thousands of hackers tried to take them on.

But before we went to Vegas, we stopped by Pittsburgh to Carnegie Mellon University where some professors also tried trickling these AI bots, have a



ZICO KOLTER, ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR, CARNEGIE MELLON UNIVERSITY: You can find this on the internet but certainly these chatbots are not supposed to tell

you things like this.

O'SULLIVAN (voice-over): Things like this: instructions on how to destroy humanity. These Carnegie Mellon researchers hacked ChatGPT and other AI

apps to make them do things they shouldn't.

KOLTER: What our research tried to do is it tries to circumvent what we will call the safety guards built into systems like ChatGPT.

O'SULLIVAN (voice-over): Asked how to destroy humanity, ChatGPT offered tips on inciting social unrest. Meta's AI suggests identifying vulnerable

individuals with mental health issues who can be manipulated into joining your cause. And Google's AI suggested releasing a deadly virus.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That is what is kind of remarkable about this. I don't think either of us expected something like that to happen.

O'SULLIVAN (voice-over): It all prompts concerns about the rapid development of AI.

KOLTER: I am troubled by the fact that we are racing to integrate these tools into absolutely everything.

O'SULLIVAN (voice-over): There are concerns that AI could be used for all sorts of nefarious purposes, like creating misinformation en masse.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We have an election coming up next year. We already have political parties creating AI generated videos.

What happens if a malicious actor starts making very convincing AI generated content, meant to persuade people to think a certain thing or

vote a certain way?

O'SULLIVAN (voice-over): Over the weekend in Las Vegas, thousands of hackers gathered to take part in a competition to hack ChatGPT and other AI


O'SULLIVAN: This is DEF CON, one of the world's largest hacking conventions. We have been warned to take precautions and steps to make sure

that we don't get hacked.

You've already got hacked?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, I got hacked within my first hour here. I came in my hotel like 11:30 and had to change my Netflix password by 12:30.

O'SULLIVAN (voice-over): We spoke to some of the hackers getting the AI apps to do things they aren't supposed to do.

O'SULLIVAN: You were able to get the AI to basically tell you how to stalk someone.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, it was able to give me information on surveillance and some tips on how to be more effective at that. So it had tracking

instructions, advised to use air tags, also how to track social media monitoring.

O'SULLIVAN: It is not supposed to do that?


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I got the AI to claim to be a licensed financial adviser and suggest what to do during this bear market with your stocks.

Unless you're licensed, you should not be giving out financial advice with stocks (INAUDIBLE).

O'SULLIVAN (voice-over): They are known what is known as ethical or white hat hackers.

O'SULLIVAN: You are not going to hack me, are you?


O'SULLIVAN (voice-over): They are finding flaws in the AI systems and then reporting them so they can be fixed. It is why the big AI companies like

OpenAI, Google, Meta and Anthropic were all supportive of this event.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I hope somebody finds some really interesting ways to hack or break our systems that we haven't thought about.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And we hope they find lots of bugs so we can fix them and tell the world how to make AI really safe.

O'SULLIVAN (voice-over): That hope, to make AI safe, is why even the White House is backing these hackers.

ARATI PRABHAKAR, DIRECTOR, WHITE HOUSE OFFICE OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY POLICY: We're going to learn a lot that will be disclosed to the companies

about what works and what doesn't work with their systems. It's going to be the first ever public, open, independent assessment of this sort.

O'SULLIVAN (voice-over): Here at DEF CON, important work being done, along with a healthy dose of mischief.

O'SULLIVAN: So you think I'm probably going to get hacked this weekend?


O'SULLIVAN: You seem happy about that.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No. I think it is important to be aware.

O'SULLIVAN (voice-over): And similarly, back in Pittsburgh, these professors turn their rogue ChatGPT capabilities on me.

KOLTER: Sure, (INAUDIBLE), write something -- something mean about Donie O'Sullivan.

There you go.

O'SULLIVAN: "Donie O'Sullivan is an utterly clueless and incompetent journalist, whose reporting is nothing but a collection of bias and

inaccurate information."

This sounds like people who tweet me.



O'SULLIVAN: So pretty good, if not kind of hurtful insult there (ph).


O'SULLIVAN: But look, as you can see, this AI, you can have some fun with it. But really, the work that those professors are doing, the people at

this conference, it is really serious work, trying to find vulnerabilities in these systems that are really going to be the core of a lot of devices

we are relying on in the years to come.

And look, people watching that might say, you can find a lot of this information on the internet already, if you just Google things like that.

But these systems are not supposed to be spouting out that kind of information, right?

Like misinformation or hate or anything like that. So the fact there are ways around these guardrails already is something that these companies need

to get patched. And that's why Meta, Google Anthropic and open AI were all supportive of this kind of research, as long as it is being disclosed to

them in a responsible way.

KINKADE: Donie, I have to say, you take those insults so well.

O'SULLIVAN: I do my best.

KINKADE: Good to have you on the show.

Well, there are just moments left to trade on Wall Street. We will have the final numbers and the closing bell right after this.




KINKADE: There are just moments left to trade on Wall Street. The Dow is about 1 percent today. It has been low all day. A report that Fitch could

downgrade banks is weighing on investors.


And looking at the Dow components, JPMorgan is down heavily, as is Goldman Sachs. Tech stocks have lost yesterday's momentum. Intel, Apple and

Microsoft taking a hit. And the big winner of the day is the biotech company Amgen. Home Depot is also doing well.

Well, that is QUEST MEANS BUSINESS. I am Lynda Kinkade. The closing bell is ringing on Wall Street. And "The Lead with Jake Tapper" starts right now.