Skip to main content

tv   The Lead With Jake Tapper  CNN  December 10, 2015 1:00pm-2:01pm PST

1:00 pm
the first of february. so make sure you tune in for that. i'm brooke baldwin here in washington. thank you so much for being with me. we're going to send it off just a smidge early to my friend jake tapper. "the lead" starts now. thanks, brooke, an emergency message overseas, "the lead" now. a terror alert for americans in a major european city while here at home new details about the terrorist couple who dropped off their baby before murdering 14 innocent people in san bernardino. the fbi now looking at how they may have missed a link to a group of terrorist plotters who were arrested more than three years ago. also, new proof that donald trump may very well be able to archie bunker his way to the presidential nomination. more polls show his numbers soaring even after or maybe because his plan to ban every muslim from coming to the u.s. plus, he's charged with
1:01 pm
desertion. the search for him had an impact on the lives and in some cases deaths of his fellow soldiers. but bowe bergdahl is now breaking his silence and comparing himself to a movie action hero. what do his platoon mates say? good afternoon everyone. welcome to "the lead." i'm jake tapper. we have some breaking news from europe where swiss authorities have raised the terror alert level for americans in geneva. authorities there are searching for suspects who may be tied to the paris attacks. we'll have more on that story in a moment. but we're going to begin with the national "the lead." in a series of red flags now emerging after the san bernardino attack, the fbi says syed farook was in the social circle of a man convicted of recruiting four terrorists in 2012. farook's wife also dodged u.s. intelligence when she moved from pakistan to the u.s. to marry rizwan farook. the state department now acknowledging they never asked her about any possible interest
1:02 pm
in jihad during her background check. these discoveries come as families plan memorial services for their victims and loved ones. the first funeral is being held today for 27-year-old yvett yvetta valasco. let's begin with pamela brown. what are you learning? >> sources we've been speaking to, jake, are telling us investigators are now discovering a new tie between syed farook and a terrorist convicted right here in the u.s., raising questions about how farook was able to fly under the radar for years. investigators now believe san bernardino killer syed farook had direct ties or radicalized group arrested in riverside, california three years ago. the fbi charged four men in 2012 with planning to blow up a u.s. military base in afghanistan. but the fbi is only now learning farook was in the same social circle as the group's recruiter who was sentenced earlier this year to 25 years in prison. >> it shows that there is a
1:03 pm
beginning a network that is emerging very slowly for law enforcement and intelligence community folks. >> reporter: fbi interviews with syed farook's former neighbor and friend, enrique marquez, revealed the pair plotted a terrorist attack in california in 2012. the arrest of the riverside group that same year may explain why farook and marquez decided to abandon their plans. three years later farook and his wife tashfeen malik did carry out an attack. this picture shows the training event farook attended with co-workers before launching the massacre. >> the subject's last farook, first syed. >> reporter: in a meeting with survivors investigators said farook left behind a bag of explosives before returning to the event with his wife. >> the fact the bomb didn't go off meant that maybe he came back to finish the job. >> reporter: the fbi says farook's wife was radicalized years before coming to the u.s., but she was never asked about jihadist leanings when a u.s. consulate official interviewed her last year. >> we don't have any indications
1:04 pm
that it was different for her or anything missing inside this very rigorous screening process. >> reporter: state department officials say questions are only asked if red flags are raised beforehand and background checks done by the department of homeland security. >> if the investigation turns up something that there was something amiss in the screening process or something we should have done or didn't or that the screening process needs improved to make it more rigorous, well, dwooel that. >> right now as we speak an fbi team is searching a lake in san bernardino right now. there's about a team we're told of six fbi agents there on the ground with a tent set up. so clearly something's going on. we haven't been able to confirm if this was actually connected to the terror attacks, but we know that it is and they are looking for an item it could be the missing hard drive, jake, we reported on from the very beginning. the hard drive that was removed from the couple's computer. we don't know but we're trying to find that out right now. >> all right. fast breaking story. pamela brown, thank you so much.
1:05 pm
let's bring in cnn terrorism analyst paul cruickshank. also with me cnn intelligence and security analyst bob baer of course a former cia operative. thanks for joining me. paul, let me start with you. now there seem to be links to this 2012 terror ring. we know that the neighbor, muslim convert enrique marquez gave rizwan farook these two weapons. do you suspect a wider ring of people may have been involved in the san bernardino attack? >> well, it certainly would appear as some kind of wider group of radicals in that general area. several of the followers back in that 2012 case were living in riverside, which is a 15-minute drive away from san bernardino. and evan perez and others on cnn have been reporting farook was part of the same social circle which was a very radicalized social circle we understand from all the court documents in that
1:06 pm
case in 2012. this was a group that were basically superfans of the american terrorist cleric anwar al awlaki. they settled going to afghanistan to join with terrorist groups there and fighting against u.s. forces over there before the fbi came in and arrested them. and it would appear at least according to marquez statements that this spooked marquez and farook back in 2012 and they put on the shelf any kind of plot that they were planning then because they thought that they were going to be arrested in the same dragnet. they clearly weren't. and of course we've seen the results all these years later. >> bob, the fbi says that the husband and wife talked about jihad online well p before they were married. we're learning this of course after the fact. how often is chatter like this happening between at least one
1:07 pm
american? and i thought that was the whole goal of the surveillance program that is so controversial to track exactly this kind of conversation? >> well, jake, exactly. the problem is this is a fire hose of intercepts. you just can't believe the number. they don't really make sense taken in isolation. you know, support for jihad is generally, you know, a tenant of islam, it means struggle. and if they don't take an overt act like buy a ticket to syria or send money to a jihadist militant -- militant jihadist group, they haven't broken the law. so the most the fbi can do is monitor these people until they do break the law or they're about to and knock on their door and ask if they're radicalize and had they say no and that's as far as it goes. i don't think we should go down this road this is an intelligence failure. i haven't seen that yet. in some of these intercepts i have to assure you i've -- you know, they don't make sense until years after.
1:08 pm
and these intercepts apparently only made sense after the act occurred. >> all right. good information. paul, what can you tell us about this new warning to u.s. citizens in switzerland and the terrorist manhunt happening in that country right now? >> well, jake, this appears to be related to an alert that is taking place in switszer land in geneva right now that they're looking for five individuals, five radicalized individuals who they suspect may be planning some kind of terrorist attack in geneva. there was information we understand that came in from u.s. intelligence agencies to their swiss counterparts about these five individuals. and that not only were they potentially plotting something in switzerland, but also against u.s. cities as well. according to the swiss they're not sure whether these people are actually on swiss territory
1:09 pm
or not, so not clear where they are. clearly they don't have information which will lead to an arrest at this point because otherwise they wouldn't be putting this alert level out there. there's a lot of concern that ramping up security at the airports, jewish community sort of been alerted to this in geneva as well. they're also concerned about all those international sites, the u.n. and there was a key meeting that was going to take place between the americans and the russians on syria tomorrow in geneva. it appears according to local media they've switched the location to a secret location now because of concerns about these five individuals, jake. >> all right. paul cruickshank and bob baer, thank you so much. just minutes ago senators were briefed on -- briefed by the fbi on the san bernardino investigation. one member of the senate intelligence committee who just stepped out of that meeting will join us next. innovative sonicare technology with up to 27% more brush movements versus oral b. get healthier gums in 2 weeks guaranteed.
1:10 pm
innovation and you. philips sonicare save when you buy the most loved rechargeable toothbrush brand in america. ♪
1:11 pm
at ally bank no branches equals great rates. it's a fact. kind of like ordering wine equals pretending to know wine. pinot noir, which means peanut of the night. ♪ (vo) some call it giving back. we call it share the love. during our share the love event, get a new subaru, and we'll donate $250 to those in need. bringing our total donations to over sixty-five million dollars. and bringing love where it's needed most.
1:12 pm
love. it's what makes a subaru, a subaru.
1:13 pm
we're back with more in the
1:14 pm
national lead, and some breaking news. fbi dive teams as you see right there are searching a lake in san bernardino, california. it's just north of the inland regional center where last week that terrorist couple massacred 14 people. law enforcement official tells cnn that this search you're seeing on your screen right now is connected to that terrorist attack. we also have tons of new information coming in about the california couple responsible for the deadliest terror attack on u.s. soil since september 11th. new and alarming details that might have been helpful to know before syed rizwan farook and his wife tashfeen malik slaughtered 14 people. just moments ago fbi leaders briefed intelligence officials on the case. senator king from maine joining me now, he's on the senate intelligence committee and just briefed. senator king, thanks for joining us as always. what's your major takeaway after the meeting? >> my first major takeaway is
1:15 pm
i'm glad jim comey is head of the fbi. he's very thorough and professional guy. sort of sent an air of calm through the room but also gave us a lot of information. here's where we are and here's what i can tell you. it was a classified briefing, but here's what i can tell you. there are a number of still unanswered questions. the biggest one i think is whether or not there are other people involved in this plot or whether there were follow on plots that may still be out there threatening us. that has not yet been fully run to ground. the current impression is that these two people were acting alone, but on the other hand they destroyed their phones, they destroyed their hard drives and if you weren't in touch with other people, why would you go ahead and do that? so that's question number one. i think question number two that's in everyone's mind and there were a lot of questions on this, and you alluded to it in your lead there, is what we can
1:16 pm
learn from this in terms of whether there were red flags missed, whether there were tips that should have been picked up. >> yeah. >> for example, how do we do the fiancee visa? how do we do all visas for example? and, jake, here's where the problem is on visas. when you apply for a visa, whatever it is, whether it's a fiancee or whatever kind of travel, they take your fingerprints and they check it against whatever databases we have available. the question is to what extent are other countries cooperating with us in terms of making those their databases available? >> yeah. >> we may have checked this woman's database, found nothing. but for all i know she's on a database, a watch list in pakistan. i think that's something we really have to run down. >> senator king, let me ask you, today the fbi acknowledged syed farook ran in the same social circle at least one of these members of the terrorist ring arrested in 2012.
1:17 pm
i think a lot of people might be wondering he was in their social circle, one would think the fbi and other spy agencies would keep an eye on people in the same social circle as those arrested for terrorism. >> keep an eye on it sounds easy for you and i to say that. that's one of the questions, how many people does it take to maintain a full wiretap, for example. the answer is 30 agents when you do a 24-hour period. this is a very labor intensive business. and, yes, there are follow-up checks, there are checks on associates. but the question is how far can you practically go without putting a cop on every corner or on the doorstep of every house? that's the challenge that we have. but again, i think one of the most important things we can do here is what i call an after action assessment. and that is to go back and say let's reconstruct this whole scenario once we have all the facts and see if there are areas
1:18 pm
where we should have gone further, where we should have checked. >> do you think -- did you learn anything about tashfeen malik, the female terrorist in this attack that makes you think that she might have been on the radar of pakistani intelligence? >> well, the one thing we know about her was she's a graduate of a university in pakistan that's known as a kind of hotbed of terrorism, of violent jihadism. and whether or not that was enough to elevate her to put on that database, i don't know. that did not come out of the hearing today. but this is an area that i think we really need to work on. i've been in an awful lot of hearings and discussions on this issue as you can imagine in the last week. and to me this is one of the weak points is whether we're able to get access to the data that other people have. and i think that's going to be certainly one of the tasks that i'm going to focus some attention on in the coming weeks. >> have you heard anything about -- there was some scanner
1:19 pm
traffic as the attack was going on or right after the attack in which some of the police officers said things along the lines of i believe that person, somebody was working that name up or something last week, i just got some info from lapd, they have information on one of your suspects, et cetera, et cetera. have you heard anything at all about syed being known by law enforcement? >> only what you've heard. i haven't heard official reports or confirmation of that. the original response from san bernardino was that this guy we had no record of, but now we're hearing these reports that perhaps he was -- his name was familiar to police either in san bernardino or los angeles or somewhere in southern california. we don't know that yet. that's another -- there are all kinds of loose ends. there are all kinds of questions that aren't yet resolved. and that's what we have to continue to chase all those threats. >> all right, senator king, thank you so much for your time,
1:20 pm
sir. appreciate it. in our politics lead there seems to be no stopping donald trump even after a republican backlash over his proposed travel ban for muslims coming to the united states. the latest polls next. plus, for the first time bowe bergdahl in his own words explaining why he abandoned his post in afghanistan. one of his platoon mates says bergdahl's insane. and he'll join me ahead. ♪ ♪ ♪ big day? ah, the usual. moved some new cars. hauled a bunch of steel. kept the supermarket shelves stocked. made sure everyone got their latest gadgets. what's up for the next shift? ah, nothing much. just keeping the lights on. (laugh) nice.
1:21 pm
doing the big things that move an economy. see you tomorrow, mac. see you tomorrow, sam. just another day at norfolk southern. when a moment spontaneously turns romantic, why pause to take a pill? and why stop what you're doing to find a bathroom? cialis for daily use, is the only daily tablet approved to treat erectile dysfunction so you can be ready anytime the moment is right. plus cialis treats the frustrating urinary symptoms of bph, like needing to go frequently, day or night. tell your doctor about all your medical conditions and medicines, and ask if your heart is healthy enough for sex. do not take cialis if you take nitrates for chest pain, as it may cause an unsafe drop in blood pressure. do not drink alcohol in excess. side effects may include headache, upset stomach, delayed backache or muscle ache. to avoid long-term injury, get medical help right away for an erection lasting more than four hours. if you have any sudden decrease or loss in hearing or vision, or any symptoms of an allergic reaction, stop taking cialis and get medical help right away. ask your doctor about cialis for daily use.
1:22 pm
insurance coverage has expanded nationally and you may now be covered. contact your health plan for the latest information. brought personal computers to the home? totally. ...and then intel made them more efficient so that you could fit all this into a laptop... tight. real tight. ...and then they helped bring wifi to everybody... whatever that is. c'mon, c'mon. ...and now intel's best processor ever is here! which helps pcs do things you never thought possible. like time travel? hey, these pants are timeless! introducing intel's new 6th generation core processor, it's our best processor ever.
1:23 pm
1:24 pm
welcome back to "the lead." our politics lead, donald trump says the republican establishment needs to treat him with more respect. if they are unfair to him, he
1:25 pm
says, he may bolt the party and run for president as an independent. but he points out he may not need to pursue that option given his commanding leads. another new poll out today shows him with another double-digit lead nationwide. mix it with his double-digit leads in various polls in iowa and new hampshire and south carolina. and trump says that could be a recipe to run the table. cnn national political reporter sara murray is tracking trump in new hampshire today. sara. >> reporter: that's right, jake. even amid this controversial proposal to ban muslims and backlash from the leaders of his own party, donald trump is still leading the field. and you are starting to see just how frustrated that is making some of his republican rivals. nothing can seem to knock him from the top spot. donald trump still looming large over the gop field pulling 35% support nationwide in a new cbs/"new york times" poll. his closest competitor, texas senator ted cruz trailing with
1:26 pm
16%. >> i'm 20 points up. i'm way up on everybody. >> reporter: trump also leading in two new polls in south carolina. the front-runner showing staying power as he faces a bipartisan backlash over his controversial plan to ban muslims from coming to the u.s. >> the group that is not criticizing me is the public. the public agrees with what i said. >> reporter: his supporters, some of whom took part in a conversation with cnn, remain steadfast. >> so i could care less about a few muslims or a few people that are upset. i could care less about people saying they don't like donald trump's tone, okay. we need a true leader in this country. and donald trump is that leader. >> reporter: but trump's rivals continue to line up in opposition. some subtle. >> i'm going to support the republican nominee, and i believe the republican nominee's going to be someone that can win the general election. and i don't believe donald can. >> reporter: others more direct. >> president obama's strategy is a miserable failure. the only thing worse than obama's policies is donald
1:27 pm
trump's policies. >> reporter: south carolina senator lindsey graham unleashing a stinging critique today in new hampshire. >> i'd rather lose without him then try to win with him if he keeps doing what he's doing. there's no shame in losing an election. the shame comes when you lose your honor. >> reporter: and in the face of backlash from world leaders trump is canceling a trip to israel tweeting i have decided to postpone my trip to israel and to schedule my meeting with netanyahu at a later date, after i become president of the u.s. that's after israeli prime minister benjamin netanyahu released a statement rejecting trump's comments on muslims. and as a petition to block trump from the united kingdom swells to nearly half a million signatures, trump tweeted, the united kingdom is trying hard to disguise their massive muslim problem. there are signs his brash
1:28 pm
rhetoric is costing him in other ways. one of trump's middle east business partners is now pulling trump branded products from its shelves. now, trump will be here in new hampshire in just a couple hours. but in the meantime a small group of protesters have already assembled with signs like no scapegoating muslims and support immigrants and refugees. jake, that gives you a sense even though what trump is doing may bolster his support in the republican party, these are tough ideas to take to a broader electorate and win with in a potential election. >> not to mention possibly unconstitutional. national polls and state polls nearly every single one has donald trump on top. and now some republicans are saying as you heard that they would rather have a democrat in the white house than donald trump as president. our panel will discuss it all next.
1:29 pm
(phone ringing)
1:30 pm
you can't deal with something by ignoring .t but that's how some presidential candidates seem to be dealing with social security. americans work hard and pay into it, so our next president needs a real plan to keep it strong. (elephant noise) (donkey noise) hey candidates! answer the call already. now more than ever america's electricity comes from cleaner- burning natural gas. and no one produces more of it than exxonmobil. helping dramatically reduce u.s. emissions. because turning on the lights... isn't as simple as just flipping a switch. energy lives here. we danced in a german dance group. i wore when i first got on ancestry i was really surprised that i wasn't finding all of these germans in my tree.
1:31 pm
i decided to have my dna tested through ancestry dna. the big surprise was we're not german at all. 52% of my dna comes from scotland and ireland. so, i traded in my lederhosen for a kilt. ancestry has many paths to discovering your story. get started for free at what makesheart healthysalad the becalifornia walnuts.r? the best simple veggie dish ever? heart healthy california walnuts. the best simple dinner ever? heart healthy california walnuts. great tasting, heart healthy california walnuts. so simple. get the recipes at
1:32 pm
welcome back to "the lead." i'm jake tapper.
1:33 pm
more now in our politics lead. all options are open, that's what donald trump told cnn last night when asked what might happen if he decides he's not being treated fairly by the republican powers that be. but with leads in virtually every poll, trump very well could wind up the republican nominee. let's talk about trump's poll supremacy with cnn political commentator and jeb bush supporter ana navarro as well as democratic strategist steve mcmahon. ana, there is a story in "the washington post," just broke this afternoon, from bob costa who's very plugged in with republican politicians. and he talks about reince priebus meeting with a bunch of republican officials, the topic of discussion became at one point preparing for a contested convention, a floor fight to block trump from bet getting the nomination. and what they were talking about according to the report is in case trump sails through and wins all the primaries, the republican establishment should get ready to try to block it on
1:34 pm
the floor of the convention in cleveland by presenting an alternative to trump. this is really the state of the republican party right now. >> i have no idea. i mean, i think that's a question frankly for reince priebus. i think there is a great deal of concern in the republican party when you see donald trump leading. and when you realize number one, he's been a republican for, what, a few years now. he's been everything but a republican for the rest of his life. number two, he's really costing the gop brand so much harm. there's a lot of us like myself who think with hispanics, with muslims, with blacks, name a group, he's causing great harm to the brand. and, you know, look, the third thing is he keeps this threat alive about, well, you know, i might break my pledge and i might go run independent. so you have to prepare fsh for every single contingency with donald trump because you don't know what you're going to get. >> is -- >> they're not happy, they're
1:35 pm
giddy. >> no candidate's perfect. >> i don't mean to giggle, but we are giddy in one sense. obviously delighted if donald trump were the nominee because hillary clinton would have an easy time with him. however, i agree with ana. you cannot have a republican party and a republican brand that stands for the kinds of things that donald trump says every single day. and frankly not enough people until recently have denounced the things he's been saying. he's been saying these crazy things for a very long time. and until very recently every other republican would stand next to him on the stage and nod their head. now you're starting to see the republican establishment freak out and try to figure out how to deny him the nomination if he breezes through the primaries, but this should have happened a long time ago. and frankly the republican party did this to themselves. they may just lose notd just presidential but united states senate and congress as well. >> i have to say -- time and time again voices have come out. you know, when he said the things about the mexicans, when he said things about immigrants,
1:36 pm
when we went after the p.o.w.s, time and time again you have heard voices in the republican party rise up. the problem is it doesn't do any good. it almost helps him. you see his numbers rise. so you almost have to look at it strategically should we rise against him. >> let me show you what the problem is according to republican officials, and we should point out he's gaining support -- these aren't chickens that are saying they want to support him in the election. it's voters. it's republican voters. but here is the big concern among republicans. take a listen to s.e. cupp wlorks is a republican last night on cnn saying she would rather republicans lose the white house than donald trump win it. >> the damage he's doing is lasting to our party and to the conservative movement. so, yeah, i'd rather sacrifice the white house for one year and not be associated with this kind of rhetoric. not be in a position to have to go on television and defend japanese internment camps and operation wet back and religious tests and then explain to my kids why i did that on
1:37 pm
television. i'd rather -- yeah, i'd rather lose the white house and protect the integrity of the conservative movement and the republican party for years to come. >> that's the big concern, republican women like s.e. cupp, especially women but also maybe some men actually sitting out and not voting. >> try being a republican hispanic immigrant woman and ask me how i feel about it. look, it's very disconcerting. >> do you feel the same way as s.e.? >> i cannot get myself to believe that donald trump is going to be the nominee. >> how many polls do you need? >> many more than this. maybe what i need is election results, but right now i'm going to firmly plant myself and be denial stage of grief and i'm going to stay here until the poll results prove it differently. >> so if the republican establishment is serious about wanting to stop donald trump, there's really only one way to do it. he cannot win a head-to-head race one-on-one, he can win every single primary as long as there are ten candidates. so what the republican establishment should be doing is trying to figure out who to c l coalesce around and ask
1:38 pm
everybody else running as a service to the republican party that has served them so well for so long to get out of the race. lindsey graham shouldn't be running. you can just go down the list. probably jeb bush at this point given his poll numbers shouldn't be running. somebody has to be mono y monowith drum in order to beat him if there are five candidates past march 15th, donald trump is going to win the delegates. >> thank you both. we are just five days away from the next republican presidential debate. you can see that right here on cnn next tuesday night at 8:30 p.m. eastern. this has been an unpredictable election. cnn wants to know what you think might happen next. your guess is as good as anybody's i suppose at this point. go to there you can make predictions and enter a chance to win a trip to join cnn in florida at the republican debate in march. and our national lead, he says he abandoned his post in afghanistan because he wanted to be like hollywood action hero
1:39 pm
jason bourne. bowe bergdahl in his own words coming up. plus, a new terror alert in switzerland. u.s. citizens sent an emergency message as the threat level is raised. that's ahead. i use what's already inside me to reach my goals. so i liked when my doctor told me i may reach my blood sugar and a1c goals by activating what's within me. with once-weekly trulicity. trulicity is not insulin.
1:40 pm
it helps activate my body to do what it's supposed to do release its own insulin. trulicity responds when my blood sugar rises. i take it once a week, and it works 24/7. it comes in an easy-to-use pen and i may even lose a little weight. trulicity is a once-weekly injectable prescription medicine to improve blood sugar in adults with type 2 diabetes. it should be used along with diet and exercise. trulicity is not recommended as the first medicine to treat diabetes and should not be used by people with severe stomach or intestinal problems, or people with type i diabetes or diabetic ketoacidosis. trulicity is not insulin and has not been studied with long-acting insulin. do not take trulicity if you or anyone in your family has had medullary thyroid cancer or multiple endocrine neoplasia syndrome type 2 or if you are allergic to trulicity or its ingredients. stop using trulicity and call your doctor right away if you have symptoms of an allergic reaction, such as itching, rash, or difficulty breathing; if you have signs of pancreatitis such as severe stomach pain that will not go away and may move to your back,
1:41 pm
with or without vomiting; or if you have symptoms of thyroid cancer, which may include a lump or swelling in your neck, hoarseness, trouble swallowing, or shortness of breath. medicines like trulicity may cause stomach problems, which could be severe. tell your doctor about all your medical conditions and any medicines you take. taking trulicity with a sulfonylurea or insulin may increase your risk for low blood sugar. common side effects include nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, decreased appetite, and indigestion. some side effects can lead to dehydration, which may cause kidney failure. with trulicity, i click to activate what's within me. if you want help improving your a1c and blood sugar numbers with a non-insulin option, ask your doctor about once-weekly trulicity. and click to activate your within.
1:42 pm
1:43 pm
welcome back to "the lead." i'm jake tapper. our national lead, the widely respected record breaking podcast quietly debuted its second season this morning, quietly until people who rushed to download it crashed the server. this time serial is taking on the controversial story of bowe bergdahl, the u.s. army sergeant who spent five years in taliban captivity. bergdahl was brought home in a quite controversial and possibly illegal prisoner swap with the talib taliban. he was then charged with desertion, mr. bergdahl. for the first time in serial you hear about the entire ordeal from bergdahl himself, many of his comrades of course who were sent into enemy territory looking for him say they have heard and with their own eyes seen enough. shortly after army sergeant bowe bergdahl left his post in afghanistan in 2009, he says the
1:44 pm
gravity of what he had done shocked him. >> 20 minutes out i'm going good grief, i'm in over my head. suddenly it really starts to sink in that i really did something bad. well, not bad but i did something really serious. >> reporter: for the first time since the obama administration controversially and possibly illegally traded the taliban five of their prisoners in exchange for bergdahl. a dramatic release captured on tape. explaining why he left with filmmaker mark bole and the podcast. bergdahl admits he left on his own volition with a plan to return, to draw attention with problems with his leadership. >> i was fully confident that when somebody actually took a look at the situation and when people started investigating the situation that people would understand that i was right. you know, what was going on, was
1:45 pm
a danger to the lives of the men in that company. >> reporter: he says he wanted to show he was a super soldier, like jason bourne. >> all those guys out there who go to the movies and watch those movies, they all want to be that. but i wanted to prove that i was that. >> reporter: it was a decision he would re-live during his next five years in taliban captivity, bergdahl, a 23-year-old private first class at the time wrapped his head in a scarf and walked away. bergdahl's former platoon mates scoff at his story pointing out the platoon was supposed to return to a larger base later that day where bergdahl could have voiced any concerns. bergdahl says as a private first class he would not have been taken seriously. but his platoon mates believe he put his fellow troops in danger with six of them killed in various missions afterward. >> i don't really know if there's anyone who can prove that soldiers died on a directed mission to find bergdahl. however, every mission especially in the following two or more months those were directed missions.
1:46 pm
everything after that they were still missions that were in search of bergdahl. >> reporter: bergdahl tells serial after he left his post he looked for someone planting ieds whom he could track, but instead he got lost and in the morning he was spotted by a group of insurgents. >> they pulled up and that was it. >> but they said you fought like crazy. >> no, i didn't. i'm not stupid enough to try and fight off, you know, all i had was a knife. i'm not stupid enough to try to knife off a bunch of guys with ak-47s. >> reporter: and then for five years the horror of a tiny blackened dirt room. >> just on the other side of that flimsy little wooden door that you could probably easily rip off the hinges is the entire world out there. everything is beyond that door. i hate doors now. >> let's bring in a former army sergeant who served with bowe
1:47 pm
bergdahl in black foot company second platoon. josh, thanks for joining me today. first off, what's your reaction to hearing from bergdahl? it must be kind of emotional. >> in a lot of ways it is, jake. it brings back a lot of the memories. you know, having to continue to go through this again and again and again is not easy, but i know that it is necessary. >> did you listen to the podcast? >> i did, yes. >> what was your takeaway? what was your response? >> i feel that that tinge of reality that he talked about when he was 20 minutes away from the outpost, that was the very wrong time for him to be having a realization that this is real life and that what he had done was something serious. i mean, you go through training, we go through weapons training and basic training and then we go through advanced training for deployments. those kind of things are all there so that we can have that tinge of reality to understand
1:48 pm
that what you're doing is a real thing and that it has real consequences. obviously somehow he missed out on all of that. he didn't get it until he'd already walked away. >> i was texting with some of your fellow platoon mates earlier today. two of them argued bergdahl's explanation that he did this, he was going to go out and then come back, to bring attention to leadership problems. does it make any sense since, a, they didn't see any leadership problems. and, b, the platoon was all supposed to go to forward operating base just a few hours later, does that square with your recollection? >> that's absolutely the same way that i feel about it. the whole purpose of going to mess that one time was to rotate out and to switch out with the afghan partners. we knew that from the start. and so him picking that moment to walk away seemed more like an opportunity -- last-chance opportunity than it did some
1:49 pm
kind of publicity stunt. >> and what's your reaction to hearing him say that he wanted to prove that he could be a jason bourne like action figure and take down a bunch of enemy soldiers? >> well, you can hear it in his voice when they ask about if he fought or not. and then he laughed and said, oh, i'm not stupid. but of course he did admit that he walked away from his comrades in arms into a combat zone where he was then exposed to this situation. so the whole entire thing just seems a little like it's very confused. he obviously did not have the right state of mind when he was doing all of this. >> and as we have covered on this show before and as you and i have spoken about before, six of your fellow soldiers were killed by the enemy in subsequent missions, some of them directly to look for bergdahl, others looking for bergdahl was always part of it. do you still hold him responsible in some ways for those soldiers' deaths?
1:50 pm
>> absolutely. i mean, you're going to go out and be jason bourne and try and be a super soldier to prove who knows what to who knows who, you left your soldiers behind. you left your men behind. your brothers in arms behind. and he put them in the very real danger that he was claiming to try to get us out of. so i see no change in the fact that he's deserting and that he's possibly a traitor. >> i've heard from some of your platoon mates who also say this is bergdahl trying to get famous, trying to create a movie deal. do you resent him at all for doing this? >> i say in a lot of these interviews, i do them to advocate for the families of the soldiers who were lost. and i say all the time i would rather be doing this to talk about anything but bergdahl. because this is not how i like to be getting seen myself. i didn't want to be doing this kind of thing, to be quote/unquote, famous, or known. i just wanted my brothers in arms to be recognized and the
1:51 pm
soldiers who were lost to have some kind of closure for their families when we didn't know what bergdahl was doing. so, yeah, i definitely feel that if there's some sort of need for publicity, i do not share that sentiment. and being here is only just for those other reasons. it has nothing to do with my own personal gain. >> the court-martial for bergdahl has not started, has not officially been ordered, i don't think. what do you think justice looks like in his case? >> i think that he needs to be facing life in prison. his decisions don't change what he did. his state of mind doesn't change what he did. what he did was he disobeyed orders, he broke the bond of fellowship. and he walked away from his fellow soldiers for personal reasons. and all of that is desertion. and all of that is possibly being a traitor. you say the enemy came and he did not fight because he did not have the means to. well, you're a soldier in the
1:52 pm
united states army and you're supposed to fight. and if you die in that fight, then that's what you sign up for. you shouldn't be going around making decisions like that. >> josh korder, thank you so much. and as always thanks for your service and sacrifice, sir. >> thank you. a warning for u.s. citizens overseas as police hunt five people linked to the paris terrorist attacks. more on that next. the possibility of a flare swas almost always on my mind. thinking about what to avoid, where to go... and how to deal with my uc. to me, that was normal. until i talked to my doctor. she told me that humira helps people like me get uc under control and keep it under control when certain medications haven't worked well enough. humira can lower your ability to fight infections, including tuberculosis. serious, sometimes fatal infections and cancers, including lymphoma, have happened; as have blood, liver, and nervous system problems, serious allergic reactions, and new or worsening heart failure.
1:53 pm
before treatment, get tested for tb. tell your doctor if you've been to areas where certain fungal infections are common, and if you've had tb, hepatitis b, are prone to infections, or have flu-like symptoms or sores. don't start humira if you have an infection. raise your expectations. ask your gastroenterologist about humira. with humira, control is possible. at ally bank no branches equalsit's a fact.. kind of like mute buttons equal danger. ...that sound good? not being on this phone call sounds good. it's not muted. was that you jason? it was geoffrey! it was jason. it could've been brenda. hand apparently, they also lovee stickers. g. what's up with these things, victor? we decided to give ourselves stickers for each feature we release. we read about 10,000 suggestions a week to create features that as traders we'd want to use, like social signals, a tool that uses social media to help with research. 10,000 suggestions. who reads all those? he does.
1:54 pm
for all the confidence you need. td ameritrade. you got this. intel's best processor is here. i'm not ready, i'm not ready so you can take this very real, very terrifying memory and edit it, share it, play it back in amazing 4k quality. that is terrifying! introducing intel's new 6th generation core processor with amazing 4k quality. it's our best processor ever.
1:55 pm
1:56 pm
welcome back to "the lead." i'm jake tapper. topping our world lead today, breaking new details about the pentagon's plan to wage war against isis. cnn has learned that the u.s. is considering expanding military forces at bases in africa, in southwest asia and in in the middle east from where they could launch counterterrorist and intelligence collecting operations as well as air strikes against isis affiliates across the entire region.
1:57 pm
this comes after secretary of defense ash carter gave an ominous assessment yesterday on capitol hill saying that isis is not contained and that the self-proclaimed caliphate is, quote, ma tast sizing. barbara starr at the pentagon, as we speak police in switzerland are searching for potential isis terrorists and the threat level has been raised there? >> exactly right, jake. in geneva the police are on the move, the pentagon announced today it's killed three more isis leaders in iraq. the hunt now definitely going global. geneva, switzerland, on high alert as police search for terror suspects possibly involved with isis. in a new security message, the u.s. embassy in switzerland warning u.s. citizens in geneva to be cautious. the united nations compound under tight security, swiss border controls beefed up. >> translator: this process can mean the total closure of the border if necessary.
1:58 pm
>> reporter: security officials are looking for five suspects, one may be part of a network that recruited an isis attacker at the bataclan theater in paris. it's just the latest evidence of what defense secretary ash carter is now calling the metastisizing isis tumor. there is growing alarm over libya. isis has free reign to establish networks and training camps. the u.s. recently killed isis' top operative in libya. carter says it's not enough. >> we're going to have to do more in libya. isil is becoming a magnet for groups that previously existed in some cases that are now rebranding themselves as isil. >> reporter: the pentagon now developing so-called counterterrorism hubs to fight the growing reach of isis. >> that's the reality linking
1:59 pm
together american counterterrorism and military in the region and around the world so they can focus on this network wherever it is. >> reporter: the u.s. would use existing bases in afghanistan and in the horn of africa. other hubs set up in the middle east and southern europe. u.s. special operations and conventional forces could also operate for more remote locations in irbil, iraq, northern syria and in northern and western africa. it's already happening, special operations forces just finished scouting locations in northern syria. they can use to help anti-isis fighters. many say it's a growing trend to use small, lethal special operations teams to attack isis on the ground in the very places where it's located. >> you begin to breathe and live that environment, you get more familiar with it, intelligence
2:00 pm
flows, you're now more capable -- >> reporter: in another potential sign special operations are going to get more emphasis, several sources tell cnn that currently the head of special operations command is the leading contender to be nominated by president obama possibly to take over heading all u.s. military operations in the middle east, jake. >> barbara starr at the pentagon. thanks so much. that's it for "the lead." i'm jake tapper turning you over to wolf blitzer in "the situation room." thanks for watching. happening now, breaking news. under water search, fbi divers combing a lake in san bernardino near the scene of that terror attack as investigators now reveal ties between syed farook and a convicted terrorist who is from the area and al qaeda recruiter. did his arrest lead farook to abandon an earlier plot? time bombs? a bag of explosive devices left behind by farook before he returned with his wife to