tv Early Start With John Berman and Christine Romans CNN March 24, 2016 1:00am-2:01am PDT
breaking news this morning. investigators revealing a second bomber may have been involved in the brussels subway attack. this as we learn about the terror cell and ties to the paris attacks and european intelligence failed and the suspect for the airport bomber is still on the run. welcome to "early start." i'm christine romans. >> i'm victor blackwell. it is 4:00 a.m. in the east. breaking news. word of another attacker. belgian and french media report a second person involved in the
blasts. these are early reports. we know the identity of the suicide bomber who blew up the subway car. police say it was khalid el bakraoui. his brother, ibrahim el bakraoui and authorities belief najim laachraoui, both wearing black, were at the airport. laachraoui thought to have built the brussels bombs has been on the run since the paris attacks. on the run, the subject of a huge manhunt. police are conducting raids across brussels raising questions did the men in the pictures act alone or are others
out there? we have cnn's fred pleitgen with us. what are we learning here? >> reporter: we're learning from french and belgian media that there is a possibility of a second person involved in the metro bombing. the police already saying there is one person who was unaccounted for in the airport bombing. there were three people in the surveillance picture. one man in lighter clothes. he apparently is still on the run or unaccounted for. there may be additional people involved. now saying the same thing about the metro bombing. they are giving us additional information as to the bomb material and where the bomb material was likely made. it was likely made right where i'm standing now. if we pan up to the building, we can see on the top floor, is the apartment where most of the explosives were made. police raided that apartment, they told us yesterday, they found 15 kilogram, more than 30 pounds of tatp explosive.
that is an explosive you can make at home, but very powerful and that is also very volatile. if we go back for instance to what a taxi drive who allegedly drove the attackers to the airport. they had a lot of suitcases. when we got to the airport, they refused to allow me to handle the cases. there could have been something volatile inside the suitcases. the other thing that the police found here at the apartment block behind me is a trash can. in front of it, they found a laptop. that laptop, they say, contains something like the will of one of the bombers where he was saying he felt the authorities were on to him and he had limited time left. he felt he needed to conduct the attacks as fast as possible. >> ex-spansive and complex. fred, thank you. isis bomb maker najim laachraoui, the key tie to the
paris attacks, linked through dna found in houses in belgium used by the terror cell. investigators have been looking for laachraoui for months. his name released to the public after also arrested salah abdeslam days before the brussels bombings. the police raid created a panic in the terror cell forcing them to speed up plans. ibrahim el bakraoui's laptop contained his will. he wrote, i don't know what to do. i'm in a hurry. people are looking for me everywhere. if i give myself up, i'll end up in a cell. for more, let's bring in jim bittermann in our paris bureau. >> reporter: good morning, christine. the headlines were full of it linking the two attacks and najim laachraoui is in fact that connection. his dna was found on the suicide
belts blown up at the football stadium and the bataclan theater and the safe house in brussels. that safe house was also used by salah abdeslam, who was the one attacker here that got away. a lot of reason to believe this is all the same cell as this newspaper reported this morning, the same crew. the same group that was working. the other thing in the headlines, christine, and it is all over, it is questioning whether or not france and europe can defend itself against terrorism. there's been enough done and if the intelligence services are working. there are so many clues and critics saying they should have known that these brothers el bakraoui were out there. especially ibrahim el bakraoui, expelled fro turkey, sent first to brussels and then intend went to amsterdam and netherlands.
he was flagged by turkish authorities. the authorities did not react. a lot of criticism of intelligence officials. a big meeting in brussels this afternoon with justice and interior ministers. they will talk about this, no doubt, and trying to figure out how they can better cooperate across borders. >> that deportation from turkey is raising red flags. not as if these were not known to authorities. thank you, jim. as jim mentioned, concern rising across europe with intelligence services have not been able to keep up with the tide of isis fighters returning to their home countries ready to wage jihad in europe. turkey reported it deported najim laachraoui to the never lands and warning he may be a milita militant. he had a criminal record, but no
links to terrorism discovered. cnn found that interpol had an outstanding notice on ibrahim el bakraoui saying he was wanted in connection with terrorism. where there intelligence failures? joining us is the former deputy director of the chief of staff. >> good morning. >> i want to start with the paris connection. there was a collective pledge from countries across europe to assist brussels after the deficit was discovered. was that just lip service? did anything happen? >> it looks like not enough happened. i think there was a lot of movement at the top of the structures, victor, but when it came to the middle and bottom, nothing happened. that's really a severe indictment of not only the system that theuropeans have, but also their ability to
change. they don't seem to have the ability to change in the face of new information in the face of new technology. >> let's go specifically to this discovery that turkish president told the world about. in 2015, ibrahim el bakraoui was identified, deported and he notified belgian authorities. how does something like that happen here? >> so what normally happens in a case like that they will use interpol or some other mechanism to communicate with the intelligence services of the country like el bakraoui was going to. what they do in a deportation case, they are supposed to provide detailed docile. what his movements were and he is tied to terrorism and that should go into a database. the fact they did not equate a
criminal part with the intelligence part is significant indictment. it seems that this is an indication that isis mode of operation has changed. instead of being these pure jihadist islamist people, what they are actually is using the criminal element to foster their operations and you have to realize, as an intelligence person, you have to realize that is a key ingredient in the criminal under world, especially the arabic, you have to realize there are the connections. that's something that i think was an indication that was missed and very, very bad situation for them. >> terribly missed and tragic. we keep hearing how many people it takes to monitor, for example, someone who is a suspected militant 24/7. the manpower of 25 people to monitor one person 24/7. in this case, there were clear red flags, cedric.
is it a question of missing and not connecting the dots that were there? >> that is right, christine. when you talk about 25 people that are out there, you knows i is much more than that. signals intelligence. you bring all those different pieces together and you have to fuse that information. that's where the americans have done a good job of fusion cells. that is what the europeans can learn from. >> kcedric, one thing that is troubling is they can get on a plane anywhere and go anywhere. we made changes in the united states to make sure that passports are flagged of people who are visa waiver country participants with the united states. they are flagged if they traveled to the hot spots.
do you think america is safer today? >> i think america is safer than the european union is. you know, there's always a lot more to do. yes, on balance, america is safer. we have to make sure that the weakest link in this case, the european system, doesn't feed us with people that are suspect from a terrorist standpoint on islamic militant standpoint. that is where all procedures have to be brought together and we have to be vigilant. >> cedric, thank you. talk to you soon. 11 minutes past the hour. the war on terror creating new issues on the campaign trail. we have a that next.
behavior. trump and his rival ted cruz are calling for more aggressive policing in muslim neighborhoods. >> we need to use proactive policing and law enforcement and intelligence and national security resources. >> they're protecting each other, but they're really doing very bad damage. they have to open up to society. they have to report the bad ones. they're not reporting it. >> hillary clinton insists the plans offered by trump and cruz prove the candidates are quote loose cannons. the former secretary of state and president obama denouncing the idea of profiling muslim communities. both democrats claiming that plan makes no sense. >> when republican candidates like ted cruz call for treating american muslims like criminals and for racially profiling
predominately muslim neighborhoods is wrong and counter productive and dangerous. >> i just left a country that engages in that kind of neighborhood surveillance. which by the way, the father of senator cruz escaped for america, the land of the free. >> really something. three stories. we will hear a lot more on the campaign trail about all of that. time for an early start on your money. dow futures are lower. stock markets in europe and asia lower as well. the u.s. stock market is closed for good friday. a short week this week. oil side comes after a new report shows supply is growing. u.s. crude imports rose to 8.4 million barrels per day. 532 million barrels of oil are
sitting in storage. an all-time high. the recent crash in oil prices has slowed down production in some areas. that is filled by the gap in other countries. saudi arabia sent 10 million barrels. cheap prices are enticing to buyers. investigators piecing together who was behind the brussels terror attack. we are learning new information about the victims of the bombings. that's next. "ow..." "are you okay?" "yeah, i just got charged for my credit monitoring. that's how i know it"s working." "ah. you know you can go on creditkarma.com and check it out there. it's completely free." "really?" "yeah" "oh, that didn't hurt at all." "yeah, completely painless." "credit karma. give yourself some credit."
as the manhunt for the surviving brussels bomber search continues, the u.s. state department is aware of a dozen americans hurt in the attacks. no deaths. a state department official says a number remain unaccounted for like stephanie and justin shults. last seen when they dropped off her mother at the airport. 21-year-old bart migom was on the way to the airport to visit his girlfriend. she says he never made it. >> in the last two days, they have been something i never thought i would feel. it's been the worst days of my life. i guess i didn't know how much one person can love another
until you just don't know where there are. >> joins us for the latest on the victims and many waiting for word is cnn's atika shubert. atika, the tragic loss of life and hundreds of people who are very injured. some in comas, we're told. then folks waiting for any word, atika. >> reporter: more than 100 are still in hospital. the most frustrating for families is they feel they are not getting any information. i went to the royal military hospital. which is one of the medical teams trying to identify victims. doctors told me the blast was so powerful that it literally ripped a lot of the victims apart. they are not able to identify them any other way other than fingerprints or dna or dental records. what we are seeing is families going from hospital to hospital trying to give any information they can.
in fact, we met one man looking for his 24-year-old girlfriend. they have a son together. he says he is desperate. he doesn't know. it has been very difficult for the families. there is some slim hope as you point out. a number of the wounded have not been identified because they remain in comas. however, that's a very slim possibility and it's a very grim reality. at the moment of the 31 killed, 3 have been identified. >> only three. atika shubert, thank you for that. >> breaking news this morning. as this investigation expands, two bombers now believe to be behind the brussels subways attacks. new information on the terror cells and ties to paris and how police intelligence failed to track them. well, it was nice to see everyone.
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breaking news this morning. investigators revealing a second bomber may have been involved in the brussels subway attack. this as we learn new information about the terror cell and how european intelligence failed. welcome back to "early start." i'm victor blackwell. i'm christine romans. 30 minutes past the hour. word of another attacker involved in the brussels bombings. a senior security source tells cnn a second unidentified person sought in the blast in the brussels metro system. belgian media reports the individual was caught on video holding a large bag. we know the identity of the suicide bomber reported earlier who blew up the subway car. officials say it was khalid el bakraoui. he rented the brussels apartment that served as the hideout.
khalid's brother, ibrahim el bakraoui and najim laachraoui both wearing black in the photo were the suicide bombers at the airport. laachraoui has been on the run since the paris attacks. now the third man who dropped his bomb off at the brussels airport and left, the man in the light jacket and hat and glasses, he is still on the run. he is the subject of the intense manhunt. police conducting raids raising the questions did the men in the pictures act alone? are there other members of the terror cell out there? cnn's fred pleitgen joins us. it is alarming. still unidentified terrorists on the run. >> reporter: yeah, absolutely.
it's one of the things the belgian authorities are worrying. they say potentially people who are dangerous and could plot further attacks. when the police caught salah abdeslam on friday, they said they believed he was part of the new network forming and planning attacks. three days later, we had attacks here in brussels at the airport and metro station as well. at this point in time, the belgian authorities believe there could be two people involved in the attacks on the run. one of them from the airport attack. the man in the light colored clothes caught on camera and the second person inside the metro station holding that large bag. it is unclear if the person was killed in the blast or if the person survived. there are potentially other helpers who could be out there. the bombs were made in the
building behind me. in the schaerbeek district. the tatp explosive that you can make from bleach and homemade things. it is difficult to make and volatile. you have to handle it with some expertise. the other thing that was found here was apparently a laptop. i want to zoom in to something here. this laptop was found in a garage can outside the building where the people took off from the airport. you can zoom in and you see the garbage can is in front of the apartment building. the authorities found a laptop in the can. on the laptop, they believe they found something like the last will of the attackers. he was saying that he felt that the authorities were on to him and time was running out and he
needed to expedite the attacks. a lot of the things the authorities are finding out now. a lot of new things. at the same time, there could be other people part of the web that plotted the attacks that could be dangerous to the public in belgium, but europe. >> fred, are authorities getting help from salah abdeslam about other potential terrorists? he could be the key to the others? >> reporter: he is in custody. police believe they could get potentially some information from him. it's unclear at this point in time what he's telling authorities. we heard in the initial stages after capture, he was cooperating with the belgian authorities. apparently he said he was supposed to blow himself up in paris. he didn't do so. we don't know any of the other things or how well he is
cooperating. he is someone who is supposed to go in front of a judge today or tomorrow. those hearings have been po postpon postponed. the big question is, is he going to divulge any names or anything that could help the police here find out more people who could be part of the wider cell that they believe is related to the paris attacks and brussels. >> thanks, fred. isis bomb maker najim laachraoui, the key tie to the paris attacks, linked through dna in belgium. investigators had been looking for laachraoui for months. his name released to the public after police arrested salah abdeslam just days before the brussels bombing. for more on the paris connection, let's bring in jim bittermann in the paris bureau. jim, as we learn more about the connections between these
individuals, those who have committed jihad, the suicide bombers and those still on the run, the question is how much did the authorities know and how much did they know and just not use? >> reporter: that's a big question this morning, victor. you see it all over the press this morning. they are saying what has to change now? change with the intelligence services. they knew quite a bit of information they weren't connecting the dots and criticism has come in from all corners this morning. the president in turkey expelled ibrahim el bakraoui and warned he was a terrorist. that warning was not needed. he went to amsterdam. authorities did not pass that information on to the belgium palestinian he was there. and in fact, he moved easily
because there is no border and moved into brussels where elahe later blew himself up. there were connections. hillary clinton criticized the intelligence work. the transportation minister of israel was absolutely blistering saying that the belgians were out eating chocolate when they should pay attention to the details and linking terrorists together. what they should have known and what they should have done ahead of the attacks. we have to see how this plays out. there is a meeting scheduled later today in brussels. the interior ministers and justice ministers are getting together and talking about how they better share information. that is something they promised before and they assured the public before has been in existence, but obviously has not
taken place. victor. >> promises after "charlie hebdo" and attacks in november and now promises again. jim for us in paris. thank you. as jim mentioned, law enforcement have not been able to keep up with the tide of returning isis fighters returning from syria and iraq to the home countries ready to wage jihad in europe. turkey revealing it deported ibrahim el bakraoui to the netherlands and warning belgium he might be a militant. turkey said el bakraoui had a criminal record, but no links to terrorism discovered. in the meantime, cnn found that interpol found an outstanding red notice on el bakraoui. saying belgium wanted him in connection with terrorism. could the brussels attacks been prevented? we are joined by cedric
leighton. that sounds to me like a classic intelligence failure. turkey telling belgium one of the suspects, we think he is a militant, actually deporting to the netherlands and he gets in a car or on a train and cross the border. the belgians don't notice or miss it. >> absolutely, christine. it is the thing where the red flags were there when you see the red notice by interpol put out on him and the different warnings passed. what they should have done is they should have surveilled ibrahim el bakraoui. they should have taken a look at exactly what his pattern of life was and who his associates were and where he lived. if he was using aliases. it is easy to do this in hindsight. one of the key things of surveillance work, there is a
lot of drudgy before you get a big break. it is all of the work you have to do in order to get these kinds of people. they are basically hiding in plain sight. >> cedric, how much of what has been exposed in the last 48 to 72 hours resources and how much is a structure problem that this changes? a complete change from top to bottom? >> victor, i think this is a structure problem. they are miss appropriating funds, that type of thing. i think it is a bureaucracy problem. when you have to deal with culture of intelligence agency, these cultures are embedded over a long period of time. in belgium, you have divisions based on language, flemish and french. you know, some other things like
that. there are those divisions. political divisions that happen in any country. i think the belgians should take a page from the united states experience after 9/11 and look at the run-up to 9/11 and after. and how bad we were dealing with things on the intelligence side and use that as a way to move forward. that's one answer. it's not the complete answer and there are specific things for belgium and what they have to do. that is one part. >> you mentioned 9/11, one of the hallmarks of 9/11 were the pairs of brothers involved in attacks. these are another pair of brothers. should law enforcement and counterterrorism people and intelligence analysts need to focus in on what is the formula for growing these jihad terror
cells? >> i think so, christine. the formula or details of the formula may change over time. there are a lot of familial connections. they tend to go with groups associated with each other like that. with this particular series of attacks in brussels and paris attacks, we notice there are these brother to brother connections. with that, you have to look at not only how they are connected, but also what kinds of lives these people lead. you are talking about anything from a petty criminal to a serious criminal activity of that is now connected to the terrorist world and isis specifically. those are the connections that need to be examined. the apparent fact the belgians have said let's look at this and keep it on the criminal side. that was a mistake. >> indeed. cedric, thank you for that.
13 minutes until the top of the hour. the terror attacks in belgium are dominating the conversation on the campaign an trail. donald trump wants to be more cooperative with law enforcem t enforcement. trump and ted cruz are also calling for more aggressive policing in muslim neighborhoods. >> we need to use pro-active policing and proactive law enforcement and intelligence and national security resources. >> they're protecting each other, but they're really doing very bad damage. they have to open up to society. they have to report the bad
ones. when they see trouble, they have to report it. they're not reporting it. >> hillary clinton insists the plans offered by trump and cruz prove both candidates are quote loose cannons. the former secretary of state and president obama denouncing the profiling. both democrats claim the plan doesn't make any sense. >> when republican candidates like ted cruz call for treating american muslims like criminals and for racially profiling predominately muslim neighborhoods is wrong and counter productive and dangerous. >> i just left a country that engages in that kind of neighborhood surveillance. which by the way, the father of senator cruz escaped for america, the land of the free. >> while everyone is focusing on
brussels and terrorism, the republican establishment is quietly coalesceing behind ted cruz. jeb bush endorsing cruz on wednesday with scott walker expected to follow suit. meanwhile, john kasich is dismissing calls to step aside. the ohio governor insisting the race is effectively over if he's not in it. >> let me tell you, i drop out, donald trump is absolutely going to be the nominee. i'm not out here to stop donald trump, but i can tell you the reality of it because i don't believe that senator cruz can come to the east and win. >> meanwhile, things are getting more nasty and personal between donald trump and ted cruz. trump threatening to quote spill the beans about cruz's wife heidi after an anti-trump ad
displayed on facebook of his wife posing nude. >> and someone's tweet that shows ted cruz's wife next to a very flattering picture of melania trump. yeah. >> after we talked about hands and spray tans. now we're on wives. howard schultz says the candidates are deceiving the public. here is what he told poppy harlow. >> i look at the current primary situation and i think many people are embracing what i describe as fool's gold. the vibe and anger and anxiety will not produce what we need. >> not good for the country. schultz says we need inclusion. something we are not hearing. he publicly identified himself as a democrat, but he has not endorsed any candidate or made any donations. he also blasted rhetoric about trade. saying it is easy to look back
and criticize nafta, but what will really boost america's economy is working with trade partners. oil falling again and that means more volatility for stocks. i'll show you the numbers when we get an early start on your money next. well, it was nice to see everyone. i just wish it had been for a better reason. me, too, but the eulogy that frank's daughter gave was beautiful. i just feel bad knowing they struggled to pay for the funeral, especially without life insurance. i wish they would've let us help. but, it did make me think, though.
about what? well, that i could leave you in the same situation. i don't have life insurance, either. if something were to happen to me tomorrow, how are you pay for my funeral? or my other bills? nothing's gonna happen to you tomorrow. you don't know that. i made a promise to always take care of you kids. without life insurance, i'm not keeping it. besides, i already looked into it and between my budget and health, well ... you should call massmutual. they have a new policy called guaranteed acceptance life insurance. i got covered with one call, and it was an affordable option for reliable coverage. what do you think, mom? i think it's time to make sure i keep that promise. if you're age 50-75, it's easier than ever to get reliable coverage at an affordable price. call massmutual today for guaranteed acceptance life insurance. with no medical questions or exams, you cannot be turned down. with one phone call, you can get coverage ranging from $2,000-$25,000, and premiums can start at
less than $10 per month. guaranteed acceptance life insurance can help your loved ones cover expenses such as funeral costs, remaining medical expenses and credit card bills. we have several payment options, and benefits are paid quickly and directly to your beneficiaries. they can use it for any expense they choose. for more than 160 years, our policyowners have mattered most to us. massmutual's ratings are among the highest of any company in any industry. you can feel confident we can help you protect the people who matter most to you with guaranteed acceptance life insurance. call massmutual today at this number. call now!
five minutes until the top of the hour. we are getting information from the brussels victim terror attacks. the u.s. state department is aware of a dozen americans heur in the attacks, but no deaths. a number are unaccounted for. a tennessee couple who now live in belgium. in other cases, americans are hoping for word from european loved ones. bart migom was on the way to visit his girlfriend in athens,
georgia. she says he never made it. >> these last two days are something i never thought i would feel. it's been the worst days of my life. i guess i didn't know how much one person can love another until you just don't know where they are. >> joining us now is cnn's atika shubert live in brussels. atika, we talked this morning how overwhelmed intelligence services are there, but for the medical services, are they as overwhelmed by the number of injured filling up hospitals? >> reporter: fortunately the hospitals were well prepared. ironical ironically, they were preparing for a natural disaster or catastrophe. the military medic i spoke to
yesterday is one of the first people on the scene yesterday. he said it was unlike any other war zone he had been to. he had gone and it was chaos and dust everywhere and people streaming everywhere. worst blast injuries. limbs missing. p these are the things he had to deal with. he said for the victims closest to the blast, they were literally ripped apart by the explosion. that's why it's been difficult to identify the victims. what's required is fingerprints, dna or dental records. families had been going from hospital to hospital giving whatever information they can to try and find their loved ones. we spoke to a man who is trying to find his girlfriend. they have a 1-year-old son together. the last he heard was she was headed for school on the metro.
this is the kind of agonizing wait for families. of the 31 people who have been killed, 3 have been identified. of the wounded, four have not been identified. they are still in a coma. for families, there is some small glimmer of hope that perhaps their family members are wounded and simply in hospital. it is a slim hope and grim reality that they're facing. >> a reminder beyond terror and international intelligence, this is a tragedy for families. atika shubert, thank you. we're coming up on the top of the hour. 4:58. let's get an early start on your money. u.s. stock futures lower. oil prices weighing. losses in europe stock markets. shares in asia also lower. volatility is back. after a report that u.s. crude
oil stock piles at historic highs. more trouble for yahoo!. activists starfund value is trying to replace the entire board. the two sides are locked in a battle for months. the ceo marissa mayer is trying to turn yahoo! around. the company is considering a sale of all or part of its businesses. that's too little too late. the stock is up 4% this year. shares have plunged 22% if you look at it over the past 12 months. they are up a bit in pre-market trading. more breaking news coming up. "early start" continues right now. we begin with breaking news. a second bomber revealed to be involved in the brussels subway attack as we learn new information about the terror cell. ties to the paris attacks and
how intelligence failed. how the manhunt for the airport bomber still on the run. welcome to "early start." i'm victor blackwell. >> i'm christine romans. it is thursday, march 24th. 5:00 a.m. in the east. breaking news this morning. word of another attacker involved in the brussels bombings. a security source tells cnn a second person sought in the blast brussels subway system. the individual was caught on video holding a large bag. we now know the identity of the suicide bomber who blew up the subway car. officials say it was khalid el bakraoui. he rented the apartment. khalid's brother ibrahim el bakraoui and authorities believe najim laachraoui both wearing black here were the two suicide bombers who died at the airport. laachraoui,ug