senior correspondent fred pleitgen live in berlin. >> reporter: yeah, chris. there's a lot of concern here in berlin after at 8:00 p.m. last night this massive tractor trailer plowed through one of the biggest christmas markets in the western part of the city. now the german authorities coming forward, telling cnn the man they believe is behind this is probably from the afghanistan/pakistan region, and they are treating this as terrorism. here's how things unfolded last night. bodies strewn across the walkway, christmas market stalls in pieces. this is the immediate aftermath of yesterday's deadly attack in central berlin. investigators say around 8:00 p.m. this black semi truck steered deliberately into a crowd of holiday shoppers, hitting at least 60 people and flattening several structures without slowing down. >> nobody knew what was happening. everybody just started scurrying and running.
>> reporter: the truck, loaded with 25 tons of steel, dragging some pedestrians 50 to 80 feet before toppling a christmas tree and coming to a halt. >> some people were bleeding. there were people lying in the pavement. >> reporter: police have one man in custody. he was discovered about a mile and a half away from the scene. german police and intelligence officials tell cnn the suspect in custody in relation is a recent refugee from the afghanistan/pakistan region. another man, a polish national, found dead in the passenger seat. the owner of the polish company, to which the truck belongs, telling reporters he lost contact with his driver after he arrived in berlin from their work site about two hours away and suggesting that the truck may have been hijacked. the carnage eerily reminiscent of the july terrorist attack in nice, france, when a truck driver ran over and killed more than 80 people during bastille day celebrations. berlin's interior minister
saying, quote, our free society needs to be opened and celebrate christmas as the festival of the family of happiness. this has been destroyed here. and, guys, angela merkel came out earlier today with a statement saying that she was obviously appalled by this attack, offering her condolences to the victims. also saying that she was also shocked by the fact that it could have been someone from the refugee community who may have been behind this act. one of the things that the intelligence services here in this country were saying before this happened is that first of all, they feared there could be attacks in germany around christmastime and specifically that there could be christmas markets that might be targets. chris? >> i'll take it from here. now to another terrorist attack. six people detained after the assassination of the russian ambassador to turkey. most of those in custody are members of the shooter's family. this as a team from russia heads to turkey to investigate this
brazen attack. cnn's international diplomatic editor has more from ankara. >> reporter: alisyn, the diplomat's body is being repatriated back to russia. his cold-blooded assassination played out for all to see. it happened last night. leaders of turkey and russia are calling it a provocative terrorist attack. the assassination of russia's ambassador to turkey caught on video. andray karlov shot multiple times in the back. the gunman shouting defiantly, god is greatest, and do not forget aleppo, do not forget syria. according to turkey's interior minister, the lone gunman is a 22-year-old police officer born in turkey. his body taken from the scene
after he was shot and killed by security forces shortly after the attack. the brazen public assassination coming as many blame russia for its part in supporting syria's president in the civil war and the ongoing humanitarian crisis in aleppo. turkey and russia often at odds over the syrian civil war, trying to put aside their differences this year. russian president vladimir putin vowing the assassination won't damage relations, pledging to step up the fight against terror and saying, quote, criminals will feel the heat. the president of turkey agreeing, calling the attack a provocation aimed at driving a wedge between the two countries. the u.s. state department condemning the attack. >> we stand ready to offer any assistance that may be required to russia and turkey as they investigate this despicable
attack. >> reporter: just hours later, another frightening incident. this time outside the united states embassy in the same neighborhood where the ambassador was assassinated. turkish police arresting a man who fired into the air with a shotgun, yelling in turkish "i swear to god, don't play with us." well, the united states embassy here in ankara is closed today. meanwhile, russian, iranian, and turkish diplomats are meeting in moscow to figure out what they can do about the humanitarian situation in aleppo and assess the damage done to turkish/russian relations. while we've been on the air, we know authorities have arrested another person, bringing to a total of seven detained over this killing. back to you. >> nic, thank you very much. please keep us up to date. let's bring in cnn senior
international correspondent clarissa ward. and we have paul cruickshank in london. here in new york, we have senior editor of the daily beast, michael weiss. michael, let's start with you. we have switzerland, yemen, turkey, and now what we just saw is this just a reflection of the global assault at play, or is this something worthy to look at as coordinated? >> i don't think it's necessarily coordinated, but look, there is something in the zeitgeist, something in the air. the collapse of the middle eastern states, which really began with the invasion of iraq but has been exacerbated with the catastrophe in syria. focus on aleppo for a minute. this is going to be a rallying cry for a whole new generation of sunni jihadis. aleppo was not taken by the assad regime. this is incitement.
the shooter in ankara -- >> you think there's an echo effect. >> sure. this almost transcends any particular organization or ideological movement. this is a kind of rallying cry for sunnis who feel like they're besieged, like they're the beleaguered minority sect, even though they're the majority in islam. i've talked to a lot of people, syrians who are secular, syrians who you and i would not consider to be any shade of islamist. they live in the west. many of them were cheering the assassination of the ambassador. this is a gruesome killing in cold blood. why? they consider this guy to be an exponent of state terror given what russia has done in syria. so we're in for a long nightmarish few years here. >> paul, you have new reporting on who was behind the truck attack in berlin. what have you learned? >> alisyn, they have a suspect in custody. that suspect is a refugee from
the afghanistan/pakistan region who came into germany sometime late 2015, early 2016 through the balkan refugee corridor. they're still trying to establish for sure that he was indeed the attacker. they're investigating all of that. but this news at a time when there's a lot of controversy about this, refugee flows into germany, more than a million refugees have come from countries like syria. the peak of the migrant crisis was in the later part of 2015, early part of 2016, when this individual came to germany. it was very difficult for them to check everybody at that time. of course, it does have to be emphasized that the vast majority of refugees who have come to germany have been fleeing things like isis terror and really don't pose a security threat, but isis have been trying to infiltrate operatives,
and they've also been worried about people being radicalized, dislocated young men and women who have left their home country, being radicalized by extremists already present in germany. >> clarissa, how is this echoing back in moscow? is it being regarded in terms of this kind of shade of complexity, the way michael is talking about? that it's not just straight ordinary islamic terror, that there may be a sectarian feel to this based on what the sunnis are feeling going on in syria vis-a-vis russia? >> no, there are no shades of complexity here, chris. the russians see things in very black and white, binary terms. they have said the killing of the russian ambassador is an act of terror, and they're pursuing it as such. at the same time, the russians are very pragmatic, cynical even. they have understood for quite some time that their intervention in syria would have
an impact, that it would potentially raise alerts and raise the danger or threat that some of their embassy staff as well as soft targets of russian people all around the globe would face. this isn't the first time they've been through this. they've fought their own insurgency in chechnya. we just saw, how long ago was it, that the russian airliner was shot down. so russia is well aware that it will face a backlash because of its actions in syria, but it does not accept the kind of nuance and complexity that michael was alluding to. i would say that russians mainly see that as weakness. their take on this is that the u.s. and russia should form a unified front to fight this threat with everything and every weapon they have in their arsenal, chris. >> michael, i want to get back to berlin for a second. we saw a truck attack much like what happened in nice. we also saw our own here at ohio state university, someone attacked the campus with a car.
is this a directive coming from isis? >> yeah, i mean, the former spokesman of isis said this in 2014. he said, look, it's becoming more difficult for you to make the immigration to come here and be a trained up agent of isis, so stay where you are and use whatever means or tools are at your disposal. take a knife, stab the infidel through the heart, take a rock, smash his head in, get in a car, drive over him. the last issue of isis' propaganda magazine had a whole feature on exactly the kind of knife that cuts through human flesh the best, which kind of knife a jihadi should wield. so there's going to be this renewed focus on very kind of low-tech, you might even say crude methods of mass murder. it's much easier -- anyone can get in a car in europe. it's harder to get an ar-15 in europe. so this does bear all the hallmarks of what isis has been trying to do. >> paul, what is your take on
why it's necessary to distinguish motivations? here the president-elect saw both of these events in germany and in turkey equally, calling them islamic terrorism. is there a mistake in there? are the russians right that it's an expression of weakness and distraction or are there validity in the distinctions? >> neither investigation has conclusively made that determination yet in berlin and ankara, that this was islamist terrorism. on the berlin case, there's certainly a number of pointers which lead you in that direction. but people in positions of responsibility across the west need to be cautious on labeling acts, the particular motivations, until the facts come out. i think every single intelligence official worth their salt will tell you that.
you kneneed to go where the fac lead you. there have been cases before where we've been surprised, frankly, where attacks seem to have an islamist motivation, they turned out to be something completely different. intelligence officials will tell them be very cautious before coming up with these kind of determinations. >> panel, thank you very much for all of your expertise and sharing all of your reporting with us. we'll check back through the program. as we've been speaking, we'll have much more on president-elect donald trump's fast response to the attacks. were his statements accurate? did they go too far? we discuss all of that next.
president-elect donald trump condemning the attacks in turkey and berlin, wasting in time placing blame. cnn political reporter sarah murray live in palm beach, florida, where trump is holding his latest transition meetings. how did the president-elect see it? >> reporter: well, good morning, chris. donald trump put out a flurry of statements, both offering his concern and also condemnation for the assassination of the russian ambassador to turkey as well as this attack on a berlin christmas market. even though authorities are still investigating both instances, donald trump wasted no time in tying both of them to radical islamic terrorism. he also vowed to come together
with his freedom loving partners to eradicate terrorism across the globe. in case the flurry of statements was not enough, he also took to his favored medium twitter to continue to express his concern about these terror attacks. he invoked not just what happened in turkey as well as in berlin, but he also pointed to an attack in switzerland where a gunman opened fire on a mosque there. he said today there were terror attacks in turkey, switzerland, and germany, and it is only getting worse. the civilized world must change thinking. so chris, it tells you that even though donald trump is the president-elect, even though he's heading to the white house, clearly not adopting this sort of dose of caution about whether to get ahead of investigators and immediately label these attacks by radical islamic terrorism. we saw him do this throughout the campaign. clear he's going to do it throughout the transition as well. >> sara, thank you very much for all that reporting. let's discuss it with our panel. we have matt lewis. "washington post" reporter abby
phillip. joining us once again, cnn senior international correspondent clarissa ward. let me just read mr. trump's tweet. this was about everything that had happened in the past 24 to 48 hours. today there were terror attacks in turkey, switzerland, and germany, and it is only getting worse. the civilized world must change thinking. matt, what does that mean? >> i think a couple things are at play here. if you look at, say for example, what happened in russia, that is between russia and turkey. >> you mean in ankara? >> right. so it's not exactly clear what donald trump would do to prevent something like that. but if you're talking overall about the international situation that we face, and i would lump in the battle against isis with russia, with china, with this sort of geopolitical situation that donald trump is about to inherit, i do think that he's going to sort of have a reagan model of peace through strength. i do think it's true that
president obama has basically allowed a vacuum and allowed a situation where internationally a lot of things have gotten out of control, whether it's iran, whether it's russia, whether it's china. i think drawing the red line invited some of this stuff in syria. i think it's possible that donald trump will take over and send a signal that, you know, this is no longer going to be tolerated. >> so clarissa, let's get your take. you're in moscow right now. of course, the government there shares the perspective of our president-elect here that just call all of this the same thing. it's all terror. it's all islamic jihadi terror. and it is weakness to say otherwise. don't burden this with complexity. but in covering the issue the way you have, what do you see as the best way forward? >> well, chris, let me just say that we've actually had a response from the kremlin to president-elect donald trump's
tweet that you mentioned. a spokesperson for putin wrote, trump's statement echoes what putin has been saying for the past 16 or 17 years about the need for a joint fight against this common threat. no single country can fight it on their own. in terms of your larger question about the best way to tackle it, i don't think anybody exactly knows because there isn't a sort of one size fits all answer to eradicating terrorism. the three examples that president-elect trump gave, one example was in zurich, where three muslims were shot in a mosque. one is a situation in turkey between russia and turkey based on the atrocities playing out in aleppo that frankly could have been any one of a number of millions of muslims who feel horrified by the atrocities they have seen taking place in aleppo. that does not necessarily fall into the rubric in a classical sense of a sort of isis or militant attack. and then you have, of course, the attack that we saw in
germany. horrifying again, deadly again, difficult to solve again. but none of these three attacks really fall into the same category. so it becomes very difficult to talk about just taking a blunt instrument to the entire situation or to the entire problem. the russians have gone with the sort of theory of bombing it into submission. you bomb it until there's nothing left except for peace. that may work in chechnya, and. may work yet in syria, but there are repercussions for those kinds of actions, as we saw in ankara. >> abby, mr. trump did not mention yemen, where a suicide bomber killed 50 people. is it overly ambitious, overly optimistic to think there is a way to stop four disparate attacks, four individuals? this seems like a very tall order. >> well, it's worth noting also
in trump's statements that he called out terror attacks against christians but didn't mention that several of the attacks we saw yesterday were brought against muslims and that muslims are, in fact, some of the greatest victims of terrorism around the world. that went unsaid in his statement. also, trump, i think, is signaling that these attacks, no matter what their motives or even who they were going against, are going to fall into a category of things that help him make the case against isis, things that help him align himself more closely with countries like russia, who he believes is fighting terrorism in a way that he wants the united states to emulate. what that means for -- what that could potentially mean for u.s. foreign policy is that while there's a lot of concern about
how russia and syria and iran are prosecuting a war in aleppo against, in many cases, civilians and ngo workers, there's concern about that, but trump has not expressed any concern about that at all. in fact, he's put more of a premium on this idea of fighting terrorism no matter how you do it. >> right. well, but that's -- it can achieve the same goal though, right. the president-elect has decided to keep it simple. clarissa has been covering this in a very different way. she understands the complexity of it. it informs her journalism. so seeing it in the context of a roman historian makes sense. for the president-elect, he's not burdened by that kind of complexity. for him, he sees all these things as the same thing, bad guys doing bad things. is that the right approach for the united states? >> well, look, i think your last guest actually nailed something about the -- again, these are
three disparate attacks. it's hard to sort of have a cohesive, you know, what would a president do. >> game plan. >> right. they're very different. but i think there is a common thread. peter binart has written about this at "the atlantic," and i think he nailed it. the america i grew up in, the ronald reagan america. i believe we're now entering an era that will basically be christi christiandom versus radical islam. i think that's the new paradigm donald trump sees the world in now. >> as a religious war? >> well, if the paradigm is freedom versus tyranny, that vladimir putin is on the wrong side. if the defining, you know, fight of our time is between the forces of christiandom and western civilization versus radical islam, now all the sudden vladimir putin is an ally
in that struggle. >> not a big embracer of christianity, by the way. >> well, ostensibly -- obviously he's a former kgbin ing agent, part of the soviet union, but he is sort of harkening back to the church and trying to create this basically war. it's not create. this war exists between radical islam and the forces of western civilization. i think it's a crazy sort of alliance because i'm not a big putin fan, but the argument here is that radical islam poses an existential threat. just as america teamed up with joseph stalin to defeat naziism, donald trump will team up with putin. >> thank you very much for all of this. we're tracking the latest developments in berlin. a truck plowed into a christmas market, killing at least a does. . this is considered an act of terror.
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yada yada yada. stream some stuff! somewhere! sometimes! you totally nailed that buddy. simple. don't let directv now limit your entertainment. only xfinity gives you more to stream to any screen. all right. we want to update you on the series of violent attacks rocking global security in just the past 48 hours. two of them coming in major european cities. you got berlin. police now saying an attack on a christmas market where the attack eer used a truck is presumed to be terrorism. in fact, german police say the attacker is a recent refugee from the afghanistan/pakistan region. that's going to have huge reverberations for the prime minister there, merkel, who's been a big forgiver of refugees. a truck steered into a crowd.
at least a dozen dead at this hour, dozens more still injured. the driver in custody. also monday, a gunman in turkey yelling "do not forget aleppo," shooting and killing russia's ambassador to turkey. the disturbing incident caught on video. seven people in custody, mostly the shooter's family now being questioned. the shooter was killed during the attack. both russia and turkey are vowing not to let this cast a shadow over their relationship. then in zurich, switzerland, you had a mosque that came under fire by a gunman. three people were injured. you also had an explosion in yemen in this time frame as well. so far no larger claim of responsibility in either of those. again, yemen was the deadliest of these last few attacks. it came on sunday. 52 soldiers killed in a suicide bombing. isis did claim responsibility for that attack. china making good on its promise to return that u.s. underwater vehicle captured in the south china sea.
the chinese defensemen ster describing today's transfer as, quote, smoothly completed. the pentagon says the united states will continue to investigate what they call an unlawful seizure. they plan on operating in the disputed waters in accordance with international law. outgoing north carolina governor pat mccrory calling a special session tomorrow to repeal hb2, the transgender bathroom bill. he said they used the issue for political gain. the controversial law required transgender people to use bathrooms that match the sex on their birth certificate in many public buildings. president obama granting 78 pardons and 153 commutations monday. that's a single day record for the use of presidential clemency power. altogether, he has commuted the sentences of more than 1100 inmates, most of those involving drug-related charges. the white house says mr. obama is expected to grant more with just 32 days left in office.
oh, i'll do it later today. your credit score must be amazing. my credit score? credit karma. it's free. that's great! um hm. just whip bam boom, it's done. that apartment is mine! credit karma. give yourself some credit. a tractor trailer barrels into a crowded christmas market in berlin on monday. 12 people dead at the last count. nearly 50 injured. it's one of several attacks in the past 48 hours. take a look at the map on your screen. you've got yemen, switzerland, germany, turkey. the explosion in yemen took out over 50 people. in turkey, you had the russian ambassador killed by a turkish police officer screaming, "don't
forget about aleppo." let's bring in cnn floeglobal affairs analyst aaron david miller. it is good to see you. i'm sorry it is for this kind of occasion, but we need your perspective. the president-elect is echoing the russian perspective on at least what happened in berlin and turkey, which is do not burden us with complexity or subtlety. these are bad muslims doing bad things. this is islamic radical terror, and we must stomp it out. the president-elect saying that these people have to be taken off the face of the earth. what is the risk in simple strength? >> i mean, i think it's appropriate to diagnose the problem. we have an issue with radical jihadi terror. it's not going to stop. it took the allies six years to defeat the axis powers, chris, in world war ii.
we're now 15 years behind 9/11. i think it's fair to say that even while al qaeda central and even isis has been losing ground that the jihadi enterprise is alive and sadly and tragically well. so it's okay to come to terms with the problem. the issue is how you talk about it, how you talk about and the importance of enlisting muslims. certainly the 1% of our fellow citizens who are muslims in this country. making sure you use the right vocabulary and formulations to recruit them. in this war, and it is a war, finally there is a risk in creating the notion that this is somehow a civilizational war, that this is a war between the forces of christianity and judaism and the west against islam. in large part, a civilizational
war can't be won. we're already at risk. we love to categorize and find comprehensive solutions to problems. the war against cancer, the war against terror, the war against drugs, the war against mental illness. the reality is there probably isn't a comprehensive solution to this. we have to fight it smartly and be smart ourselves and not scare ourselves to death. >> but people don't like that. it's too subtle. it's too complex. it feels weak. that's the criticism of president obama and his strategy on one side. president-elect says, no, keep it simple. these are bad guys. they want to hurt us. let's hurt them first. that plays very well in america right now. you wind up with a situation where what happened in turkey, by anybody's analysis who understands the problem, is not the same as what happened in berlin. but people don't want to hear that. so what is a leader to do? >> they may not want to hear it,
but one of the important missions and mandates of a president is to honestly educate the public on one hand, not create an aspirational goal that's beyond his and one day her means to achieve it, and not to scare the public to death. i mean, we face a major problem. it's not an existential threat to the united states. it's a problem that poses severe implications to our civil liberties and to our citizens. if we, for example, assume that most american muslims want to impose sharia law somehow to take away the constitution and deposit their own religious teachings and law, i think that lays the predicate that makes it virtually impossible to recruit, to mobilize, to marshal the very constituencies we need to fight this problem. a decade from now we're going to be dealing with this as well. i think every american president -- being tough is
fine. george w. bush was tough, but he had a different view of how to deal with american muslims and the issue of islam. the issue is how to be tough but be smart. >> but we'll see the simple politics play out in just a few months in germany. if it is true that the guy who drove that truck through the christmas market just now in berlin was a refugee from afghanistan and pakistan, and that's the latest reporting from german officials, angela merkel is going to have real trouble in her election because she's been so welcoming of refugees. merkel's quote itself, it will be hard to bear if this was a refugee. being soft can be punished in politics these days when it comes to terror. >> it can. mrs. merkel is one of the most astute politicians in europe today. she is faced with a real problem. as are most european
governments. the question is, what is in the best interest of european security. intelligence cooperation, trying to integrate rather than ostracize their own muslim communities, trying to enlist and mobilize them in the fight against these jihadi -- this terrorist intenterprise. i think this is a problem that the europeans are uniquely faced with, in large part because their muslim communities are not as well integrated as in ours. first and foremost, i care about what we're going to do. i'm hoping that when the transition comes january 19 to january 20, that we have the same kind of foresight and vision and smarts and prudence that's required to deal with this problem. >> aaron david miller, appreciate the perspective on these breaking events. thank you very much. >> thank you, chris. >> alisyn? first lady michelle obama looking back at her eight years in the white house. what is she doing now to help the trumps? that's next.
let's talk sports now. washington's tight end lost his cool. what did that do to his team? hines ward has more in this morning's bleacher report. >> good morning, alisyn. definitely didn't help not having your best player on offense not in the game. but washington, they're still in the playoff hunt, taking on carolina on monday night. in the third quarter, tight end jordan reid gets into it with
kurt coleman. the two scare off, and then it's on. reid throws a punch at coleman in his face mask. flags come out. reid was ejected. frustrating night overall for washington. i never understood why guys would punch other guys in the helmet. luckily he didn't break his hand. carolina, they go on to win the game 26-15. finally, bulls start dwyane wade gave a huge surprise to a chicago family. he hooked them up with new furniture and holiday gifts. he also gave the family tickets to tomorrow night's game against the washington wizards. he's serious about using his first season with the bulls to help his hometown. >> i would donate money to the city of chicago to try to help certain communities. i know i would do that, but as i do my job, others have to do theirs. as i said, you know, obviously we put responsibility on our youth, but they're following the adults as well.
they're following what's going on in their communities. they're doing what they see. so we have to do a better job. others have to do a better job of leading. if they don't do it, then the things that i'm trying to do become pointless. >> now, alisyn, i love seeing other athletes giving back during the holidays. it's such an inspiration to us all. kudos to dwyane wade for going out there and making these families who are less fortunate have a great christmas. >> so true, hines. those kids looked so excited when they saw the sneakers and all of the gifts. that is a great, great christmas gesture. thank you very much for that reporting. well, michelle obama answering the questions that many people have been asking, will the first lady ever run for office? that answer next. if you're told you have cancer,
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this morning many people talking about first lady michelle obama's interview with oprah winfrey. they talked about the past eight years, about donald trump, and the presidential election. >> the words that we say moving forward, all of us, it matters, which is one of the reasons why barack and i are so supportive of this transition. because no matter how we felt going into it, it is important for the health of this nation that we support the commander in chief. wasn't done when my husband took office, but we're going high. and this is what's best for the country. so we are going to be there for the next president and do whatever we have to do to make sure that he is successful because if he succeeds, we all succeed. >> when you say it wasn't done
for your husband, for his presidency, what do you mean by that? >> there were people who did not support his presidency. there were people in congress, there were leaders in congress who did not support his presidency, which was not something that was good for the country. it was good for politics, but it wasn't good for the country. >> all right. let's discuss this. we want to bring in "washington post" reporter abby phillip and the author of "first women," kate anderson brouwer. ladies, great to have you here. abby, i want to start with you. let's start there with what michelle obama was talking about. she was referring to mitch mcconnell and the meeting that was had in the very first days of president obama's presidency, maybe even before he took the office. mitch mcconnell had a meeting with some high-level republicans and said we're going to block him at every turn. michelle obama is suggesting that she will take a different tact with the trumps. >> right. it goes to show that she hasn't really let all of that go, that
it's still at the forefront of her mind. i think there's a distinction. she's made this distinction between the transition in the white house, the bush white house to the obama white house, and the transition in washington, which i think we can still assume for donald trump is going to be fairly contentious and kind of acrimonious. but i think she's trying to signal to folks who will listen to her that it's important to not do what they did in 2008 and 2009 going into the obama administration, to not follow the republican example for how to deal with an incoming president. for the democrats who are willing to listen, that's an important message. they're trying to decide what kind of tact do we take towards donald trump? how do we deal with this man who during the campaign we argued was unfit for the presidency? and she's making it clear where she stands on that. >> kate, i want to play another portion of this oprah interview
for you. this is the moment where first lady michelle obama explains what motivated her to speak so candidly against donald trump during the campaign. basically, it's the "access hollywood" hot mike moment where he was caught talking about forcing himself on women. so listen to this. >> a candidate for the presidency speaking in such terms about women, as i said, was not a normal thing. so my response, you know, in light of what i was seeing from my female staff, what i was hearing from my daughters, their reaction to it, for me required a different kind of response. you can't just stand before people and just give a regular political speech. >> kate, when about that? she sort of broke ranks with previous first ladies to give a more forceful speech. >> well, i thought it was really interesting. we remember back when she did "the late show" after melania
trump took part of her speech. there was a little dig at melania then. i think there's an unflinching honesty we see from michelle obama again and again. she went on the campaign trail, she was very effective because she rarely goes out. i was struck in that interview last night where she talked about how she only does things she absolutely feels there's like a cost/benefit and a plus side to her going out. in fact, she doesn't go out a lot and makes her a more important voice. she doesn't have any skin in the game. she's not trying to get elected, and i don't think she wants to run for office. >> you bring us to our next point. so many people after her sort of tour de force performance at the democratic convention thought, ah, she's the next voice of the democratic party. she'll run for office. she shot that down last night. let's listen to that portion of the interview. >> people don't really
understand how hard this is. it's not something that you cavalierly just sort of ask a family to do again. but let me just tell america. this is hard. it's a hard yob. i said it on the campaign trail. it requires a lot of sacrifice. it is a weighty thing. and it's not something that you even look to one family to take on at that level, you know, for that long of a period of time. >> so, abby, do you believe her in is that it? end of story, she'll never run for office? >> i do believe her. i think of all the people in washington who say i'm not going to run for office. michelle obama's probably the one person people should take that at face value. she really does not like political -- you know, the kind of political engagement her husband has been a part of for so long. she was very hesitant to bring her family and herself through this process. now that she's done it, i think she feels like she has done it in a way that she's proud of,
but she doesn't like being in washington. she doesn't like politicians. i think she feels like her personality, her honesty and frankness is just ill fitted to being a kind of smooth-talking politician. maybe just like barack obama is. >> so kate, you study first ladies. how will michelle obama be remembered? >> well, i would add to what abby's point. i thought it was remarkable she went to bed before the election results were out. that says a lot about michelle obama. i think she was steeling herself to the results, but she went to bed before she found out what was happening on election night. i think she'll be remembered as a very traditional first lady. she did a lot of good with the let's move campaign, shining a spotlight on military families. as the first african-american first lady, you know, it's truly remarkable. she was a role model to so many, you know, young girls in this country who had never seen somebody in that position who was african-american.
so i think simply being there is her legacy, one of the biggest parts of her legacy. >> she did talk about that. how one of her goals was to make the white house more inclusive. kate, abby, thank you very much. >> thank you. >> all right. what's your take on this? post your comment on facebook.com/newday. we're following a lot of breaking news this morning, including the latest information about a series of terror attacks around the globe. let's get right to it. there were people bleeding, people lying in the pavement. >> there is the fear that the truck may have been hijacked and then used here to plow into this christmas mark. >> people started running. peep sta people started screaming. >> it does bear all the hallmarks of a terrorist attack. >> the chilling assassination of the russian ambassador to turkey. >> there is no shortage of islamist groups and others in
turkey who would have motive to kill the russian ambassador. >> we're in for a few nightmarish years here. this is "new day" with chris cuomo and alisyn camerota. >> good morning. welcome to your "new day." it is tuesday, december 20th. we're following breaking governme developments. attacks around the world. the latest in berlin. sources tell cnn the attacker a recent refugee from the afghanistan/pakistan region, killing at least 12 people, at latest count, dozens injured. >> earlier monday, a gunman shot and killed russia's ambassador to turkey, shouting "don't forget aleppo" as he did it. in the past 48 hours, there have also been attacks in switzerland and yemen. leaders around the world promising strength in the battle to end terrorism. we have complete coverage this morning, starting with cnn's senior international correspondent fredrik pleitgen live in berlin. what's the latest, fred? >> reporter: yeah, al