tv The Lead With Jake Tapper CNN January 2, 2017 1:00pm-2:01pm PST
northern iraq. >> that looked delicious. jim sciutto on "the lead" starts right now. thank you for joining me, i am ana cabrera. have great day. thank you, ana. welcome to the year that donald trump becomes president of the united states. "the lead" starts right now. president-elect trump says that he knows things other people do not, and that a culprit other than russia could have carried out election-year hacks. so he knows something that 17 intelligence agencies, the sitting u.s. president and just about every single u.s. senator, republican and democrat, do not. what could be the first test for donald trump on the world stage, one with nuclear consequences? kim jong un announcing that north korea is close to testing a missile designed to reach as far as the u.s. plus, 762 homicides. one year, one american city. chicago has more homicides in 2016 than new york and los
angeles combined. now president-elect trump is weighing in. welcome to "the lead." and a very happy new year to you. i am jim sciutto, in this week for jake tapper. new year, new you? president-elect donald trump is back to work with his transition team in new york, but on twitter he still appears to be fighting last year's battles over the presidential campaign, quibbling with reporting from november that mr. trump himself was surprised by his victory. more on that story in a moment. the president-elect also promising to share new inside information about russia's hacking during the presidential campaign after another briefing with u.s. intelligence officials midweek. then, today on cnn mr. trump's spokesman walked back the possibility of new information. so which is it? cnn's jessica schneider is outside trump tower. what's the latest? do we expect to hear from the president-elect on russia this week? >> reporter: well, jim, the president-elect essentially promising to brief the public after his own meeting with the
intelligence community on tuesday or wednesday. despite donald trump's big reveal that he knows more than others know, his advisers did walk it back a little bit saying donald trump will not reveal anything classified, instead it will be his own conclusions. as donald trump rang in the new year, he continued to cast doubt on u.s. intelligence pointing to russia as the culprit of campaign hacks during the election. >> i know a lot about hacking, and hacking is a very hard thing to prove. so it could be somebody else. and i also know things that other people don't know. and so they cannot be sure of the situation. >> reporter: trump refusing to elaborate on what insider information i has, only promising to reveal more after his meeting later this week with intelligence officials. incoming press secretary sean spicer tempering expectations about what the president-elect might make public. >> he'll talk about his conclusions and where he thinks things stand.
he's not going to reveal anything that was shared with him classified. one thing that's missing from the discussion is the report that everyone keeps talking about is not final. the current president of the united states hasn't seen a final report. the intelligence community is talking about wrapping it up later this week. >> reporter: spicer also questioning whether the sanctions the trump team previously called symbolic were overblown. the obama administration ex spelled 35 russian diplomats and shuttered two compounds to retaliate against russian interference in the election. >> the question is, is the response of this administration, the sanctions they put on, proportional with the activities that happened. number two, is it a political response so russia, or is it a diplomatic response. >> reporter: candidate trump certainly acknowledged and even seemed to egg on russia hackers during the election, inviting them to break into hillary clinton's computers. >> russia, if you're listening, i hope you are able to find the 30,000 e-mails that are missing. i think you will probably be
rewarded mightily by our press. let's see if that happens. that will be next. >> reporter: hacked e-mails from the democratic national x committee and campaign manager john podesta. many democrats blame russia hacking in part for clinton's loss. donald trump once again evoking the election, closing out 2016 with this contentious tweet. happy new year to all, including to my many enemies and those who have fought me and lost so badly they just don't know what to do. love. but today trump hardly turned over a new leaf, starting the new year with new boasts about the november election, tweeting, various media outlets and pundits say that i thought i was going to lose the election. wrong. it all came together in the last week, and i thought and felt i would win big, easily, over the fabled 270. actually 306.
when they canceled fireworks they knew and so did i. trump tweeting there he always knew he would win big. truth be told it was a different story at donald trump's thank you rally on december 13th. he told the crowd there that he actually rented a smaller ballroom on election night because he thought there was a chance he could lose and he told his wife melania. he said he worked hard but he said to her, if i lose, i lose. now i want to talk to a national security advise to president trump. ambassador james woolsey. thank you for taking the time. you heard that donald trump claiming there to have new information that, in effect, no one else knows. what information could he have that the 17 intelligence agencies do not and that, for instance, he hasn't already received in his presidential daily briefing or that house members who have been briefed on the intelligence don't have? >> hacking leaves a lot of room
for weaving around like this. donald trump is an expert at this kind of weaving around and attracting everybody's attention. it's exactly what he did during the campaign. >> you're saying he is weaving around by talking about this putative new information? >> first talk about what i know, and then, after talking to somebody else, what i know is a little different. and each one gets a headline, each one -- >> right. >> i think the point is -- >> you are saying he is playing us, in effect? >> there is a possibility that he is a little bit, yes. >> is that something a president-elect should be doing on a serious issue of national security? >> why not. he is not interfering with anything or talking about anything classified. >> it strikes me he is interfering because this is an ongoing investigation. >> i don't think so. seems to me this is a behavioral mode that he has perfected. and he -- he has a point. which is that it is entirely possible to have various definitions of hacking, and there's hacking and then there's hacking. there is hacking in which you
actually destroy something or put in malware that leads to destruction later. that's terrible. there is hacking in which you steal stuff, which is really bad. there is hacking in which you just look and try to figure out what's going on. and i think that this misunderstanding or back and forthing between him and others is partly about his talking about one kind of hacking and their maybe talking about another. >> let's be clear here because there are things to -- about which there are still questions here. it's difficult to determine the intent of this. you know this better than me. you were the director of the cia. how do you know what's inside the head of your adversary. on who is behind it, that's something the intelligence community has gone public saying they have high confidence in. you even said on our air last week that you believe it was russia. but donald trump is creating doubts about the perpetrator of this. >> well, i think that the -- first of all, it's often not foolproof to say who it is,
because it's possible and sometimes easy to hide your tracks when you are hacking. and look like somebody else. go through a different server. there are lots of tricks about this. sometimes people may have been talking to somebody in the national security agency and have an idea that maybe it was one type of hacking rather than another. i don't think this is of substantial matter. i think it's basically just dialogue back and forth. >> i won't rely on my own judgment. i will just quote to you the public opinions of republicans, for instance, john mccain, or a lindsey graham, who have said this is a very serious matter. >> it doesn't mean it's not serious. i agree. especially insofar as it got into anything that lets them affect the substance of what is put out or affect the --
>> result of the election? >> -- anything about the election's results. absolutely. that's the key thing. >> from the trump camp you get the clear impression that they're concerned that, if they -- if we, everyone, keeps talking about hacking that somehow undermines their victory. because there is this open question as to how much the hacking affected the election, if at all. but on the question of who did it, can you and i at least agree? are you advising the president-elect that rush was the pick -- raur wussia was the perpetr of the hacks? >> i won't say what i am advising. but i would say it looks from all the indicators that we have read about from the nsa, cia and so forth, is that the russians were there and principally there. >> let me ask you this. i am holding here what the fobi
released last week where it details the exact process, with flow charts, of how russian intelligence services accessed the system and then released them to others around the country so they are wise to it. this doesn't look like guesswork as to who the perpetrator was. >> i don't think so it is. it could well also have somebody else in there. it doesn't mean that that didn't occur. >> meaning that there could be more than one perpetrator. >> of course. >> do you believe russia was behind the hacking? >> i believe there were russians in there, no doubt about it. >> you just mentioned there, you never really know with hacking who is behind it. looking at recent history, u.s. intelligence agencies confidently determined in china down to the individuals who were behind hacking the u.s. to the point where the d.o.j. named them and issued red letters. in the south korean hacking of sony they came out in public and said we're confident of this.
the nsa is a pretty capable operator. is it really that hard to determine who is behind it? >> it depends how skillful they are, the technology they have got, how many folks may be coming to the party. i think that the key thing to look out for is the most damaging hacking. from my point of view, the most damaging so far has been the chinese, probably. >> stealing intellectual property. >> not only that, but stealing identities. all of the information that they gleaned about people's families and -- >> social security numbers and all of that. >> terrible. that was just awful. i think we may see, as time goes on, an improved technology for sorting things out in the hacking world. but it is probably not always a good idea in these days and times to say, yes, it was russia, it was only russia, i know it's only russia. unh-unh. i could be a little more
cautious than that. >> even when you can go down to the let of how the hackers did it. >> yep. >> in our reporting is that they've traced it to cyrillic key boards. >> the russians were in there. it doesn't mean others weren't too. >> ambassador woolsey. thank you for taking the time. headline to you. eight, the number of trump cabinet nominees who could be held up as democrats take a play out of the republican playbook. which of trump's picks are they going to target? that's after this. healthy, free, the world before me, the long brown path before me leading wherever i choose. the east and the west are mine. the north and the south are mine. all seems beautiful to me.
welcome back to "the lead." i'm jim sciutto. sticking with politics now. tomorrow, the 115th congress will be sworn in, that is the 114th since the very first congress sat down in new york and philadelphia way back in 1789. republicans in both -- in control of both the house and senate, promising an ambitious agenda aimed at immediately reversing president obama's legislative legacy including repealing obamacare. democrats are gearing up for a
major battle over some of the cabinet picks as president obama is trying to defend and protect hissing legacy. dana bash and michelle kosinski have both sides of the story covered. dana bash is here in washington. which of trump's selections will they zero in, on the democrats? >> there are eight of them. eight of whom they disagree the most vehemently on policy issues. even though the argument that democrats are making that the democratic leader shuchuck schu is making, that the reason they're going to try to slow-walk them is because they don't have adequate information. background information, financial disclosures and so forth, not just to the committees that are going to be in charge of confirming the nominees but also, they say, to the fbi and even the office of government ethics. they say that that is what they are demanding, so you see their pictures on the screen there, so that there is absolutely no question that there are no
conflicts of interest, particularly for those who have very, very big portfolios and a lot of money. there are several billionaires on that list, people who have never served in public office. that's what their argument is. >> when you look at this, was the process any different from president obama? did he get more leeway with the initial cabinet picks? >> it's unclear. it's in some ways the democrats are arguing and i think they're right, comparing apples to oranges in that the obama administration, when they sent the confirmations up to capitol hill, when he announced his nominees, that background information as there along with it. the good news for donald trump is that he got his cabinet picks done pretty quickly. the bad news is maybe it's because of who these people are, the information that goes with it has been lagging behind. democrats argue that, yes, they did -- the republicans did allow seven nominees to be confirmed on obama's inauguration day, but they also had the information. the one thing i want to point
out is that, even more than the who this is is the why does it matter. and they don't -- the democrats don't have a lot of cards that they can play, but -- and this is really not one of them. they can't stop any of these nominees really, they don't have the votes to do it. what they can do is slow the train big-time. and if they delay each of these nominees on the senate floor, it gums up the works on the senate floor and potentially that delays the legislative agenda, things like repealing obamacare. >> delay, delay. dana, thank you very much. michelle kosinski joins me from the white house. is this a sign the president will stay deeply engaged even after leaving office with this concern about his legacy? >> it certainly sounds that way. when he has been asked in the last few days, he has made it clear that he knows the power of his voice. i mean, that's obvious. the question has been, how much
of a voice is he going to be to really get in there and get into these battles that are surely coming? it sounds like he knows he is going to play some role but he needs some time first to just kind of, you know, hang back from the fight and watch. but he is going to have this legacy speech coming up. this farewell speech where he is going to hit the same points that he has been making on the campaign trail so many times. why he thinks certain elements are important for americans of both parties to, if not embrace, then at least keep pieces of. i mean, in some ways that's the best that democrats can hope for at this point. he is also going to meet with democrats on wednesday to try to solidify what they can do to really protect those pieces of obamacare that he thinks republicans could be even partially amenable to, just because of the sheer numbers of americans who are now enrolled in obamacare. and when you look at these
legacy points that he has been trying to expand, even in small ways relatively over the last couple of weeks, things like transferring more people from guantanamo bay prison or solidifying climate issues, the action that he has taken, expanding some of that, obamacare seems the most likely, again, based on those sheer numbers as well as some things that president-elect trump has said, where maybe parts of his legacy could remain. for example, keeping the -- keeping parts of preexisting conditions. allowing them in. we know he and donald trump have spoken personally about that. donald trump is open to that. that might be where president obama can say, that's part of my legacy, in that area, that i really put into force. >> the question is how do you pay for that if you keep it in. michelle, thanks very much. tune into cnn tonight for a special report on "the legacy of
barack obama" tonight at 10:00 p.m. eastern time on cnn. weighing in on the bloody milestone in chicago. more homicides than los angeles and new york city combined. now chicago's mayor is responding. then, way too close for comfort, the new threat from north korea's kim jong un and the growing concerns that this new device could reach all the way to the u.s. taking a holiday in britain, are ya doll? well, the only place you need go... london's got the best of everything. cornwall's got the best of everything. sport sport nightlife nightlife (both) fashion adventure i'm tellin' ya, britain is the only place you really need go. expedia. everything you need to travel britain better. won't replace the full value of your totaled new car. the guy says you picked the wrong insurance plan. no, i picked the wrong insurance company.
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welcome back to "the lead." sticking with politics now. i want to bring in my expert political panel. julie pace. white house correspondent for the associated press. ruth marcus. columnist for the "washington post" and bill christopher, editor of the weekly standard. thank you for being here. i am slurring my words still two days after new year's. julie. we heard dana bash talking about the list of eight in effect targets for the democrats,
nominees. who is most vulnerable in the group? >> i think trump will probably get most of the nominees through in the end but i think the democr democrats are looking to make a show at out of some of them. rex tillerson because of his connections to russia. and steve mnuchin is someone they're focused on. democrats see him as a target in part because they think they can recalibrate their economic message through his hearings. he has worked on wall street. he profited during the foreclosu foreclosure crisis. they see this as an opportunity to make a stand on their own economic positions. >> what happens on the legislative front next, ruth? what are they -- president obama really wants to save obamacare if he can. if it's really just a show of force, in effect, on the nominations, what about on the actual legislation? what can they save? >> one quick thing on julie's really important point. the nominations, it's not that
there is eight targets. i think democrats pretty much expect that they will all go through but they might get lucky on one. they are really laying the groundwork. on legislation, the hardest thing is going to be figuring out how to repeal obamacare without getting blamed for a disaster in the next few years. >> you're speaking with the republicans. >> on the republican side. and then we're going to be talking about infrastructure spending, and there is going to be a lot of fissures not just between donald trump and democrats but between donald trump and more conservative, deficit hawkish republicans about how to pay on both of those things. both health care and infrastructure. >> bill, there has been a lot of talk pre and post-election about the bipartisan issues. infrastructure spending and tax reform in particular. as ruth was saying, you have disagreements even within parties on that issue. is it pie in the sky to imagine you can get some bipartisan
something through in the first few months? >> i think you could but i think the democrats are planning to fight him. i think they think they might be able to take down a couple of nominees. every president loses one. either on a vote or has to be with draug withdrawn. tom daschle. not confirmed. john tower, former senator to chair of the senate armed services committee. something always happens. trump has not vetted -- this is the one thing. trump -- i have heard accounts from people who have been interviewed and people close to people who have been interviewed. it's cute and nice in a way. all the formality goes out the window. you come in, you meet with mr. trump for 45 minutes. hey, i think you're the guy. >> he has vetted. if you look the part, you get the job. >> no one has gone through, honestly. several of these people are very wealthy with complicated business dealings. tom daschle is not a -- >> complicated business dealings? what?
>> trump thinks he got away with it so they can. guess what. trump didn't have to be confirmed by the senate. if you get 45 or 48 it takes a few only to take down a nominee. >> tom daschle's was taxes, right? it could be something with the vetting as opposed to a stand on working classes. you hear from republicans a lot. bill, i am sure you want to comment on this. they moved quickly to confirm all of barack obama's nominees and are expecting the same. different story when it came to supreme court conominee. denn dana said he got seven or eight through. >> i think you'll see democrats move on some of them quickly or allow republicans to move. they'll pick their battles because they won't be able to fight trump on everything. i think they, though, are remembering what happened to merrick garland.
that will not fall by the wayside for democrats, the memory of what happened there. >> let me ask you about russia if i can. you might have listened to the interview i just had with the former cia director james woolsey who is advising trump on national security. something he said struck me. he said, this kind of hacking is not that big of a deal. that was his point. we've heard from the trump camp, we're not sure it's russia. woolsey made that point. bill crystal, what's happening here? everybody in the world in washington -- democrat and republican -- says it's russia and it's serious. why is the trump camp pushing back? >> it is russia and it's serious but trump doesn't like the idea that anything might have happened that might have affected the election results. there has been craziness on the other side. 52% of democrats think the election results were hacked, the machines. that's not the charge. the charge is that the campaign
was hacked. >> the strategic release of the material. >> e-mails and especially the clinton e-mails. i don't know how much effect it had or not. but trump has taking a surprising number of republicans with him into an accommodating of putin position. we'll see how long it lasts and we'll see how long it lasts for trump incidentally. i have been a little shocked, with a few exceptions, how many trump supporters, advocates, people who wish trump well, decided to go down the road with them and not picking a fight with putin as they see it. >> that's true. to be fair, you have mccain and graham traveling to eastern europe. not just them. mitch mcconnell, saying it was russia. we need even more serious sanctions. paul ryan saying the same thing. >> i think that is a very telling illustration of how strangely off the reservation trump and his supporters are in terms of their extreme efforts to downplay, disregard, question what seems to be the unanimous conclusion of the intelligence community that russians were
behind the hacking and what should, it seems to be, the unanimous conclusion of every american that this is not a good thing in our democracy. they did not hack directly into our voting machines but we do not want them in there meddling. that should be the view of the person who won the election and the person who lost the election. >> julie, is this the legislative battle that trump loses. not just with democrats but very well could be with his own party. >> the sanctions question in particular i think will be fascinating because i think one of the rounds of sanctions comes up in this spring. so we really just have a matter of months before trump is going to have to make a decision on these sanctions that were in place over crimea and ukraine. and the division potentially between trump and some of these republicans. and prominent republicans. we are not talking about back-bench republicans. we are talking about party leadership, senior lawmakers who have been working on this issue
for years. the idea to have this kind of chasm early on could be, i don't want to say devastating to the presidency but could really set the tone going forward. >> i think it's something we'll have to get used to. i agree with you. you're right to cite mcconnell and ryan. the model we've had for the last 16 years. bush and obama. white house in sync with the president. maybe it's back to an older model where people don't automatically get lockstep. >> you have pretty strong leadership on the republican side on the hill. ruth, your final word. >> republicans are agreed there needs to be an investigation but are not agreed on who needs to do the investigation and how serious and reliable it should be. that will really be the test of their willingness to differentiate themselves from trump. >> you mean if it's bipartisan,
specifically. >> if it's bipartisan, a special committee versus a committee that won't be as willing to go deep and get to the bottom of this. >> like a post 9/11 commission kind of thing. >> indeed. >> bill, ruth, julie. thanks so much. a child recounts how her dad used his body to shield her from a barrage of bullets in their own home. that little girl is one of the lucky ones. her story not uncommon as chicago reaches a grim milestone. that's next.
. welcome back. and we are back with the alarming statistic in the national lead. it got even a response from donald trump today, and that is chicago's homicide rate. 762 people killed in 2016. that is more than new york and los angeles combined. it is also chicago's deadliest year in nearly 20 years. the president-elect also tweeted out the stats and responded, quote, if mayor can't do it he, he must ask for federal help.
2017 is not starting off any better. two men shot and killed at a bar. we'll have go live. when asked why there was a surge in violence the chicago police said the answer is complicated. what do they mean by that? >> they say it's complicated and the police superintendent saying it's in part because of emboldened criminals and an anti-police climate in the city. we can't forget the people caught in the cross-fire. unfortunately here in chicago all too often they are children. >> i heard a gunshot. when i hear -- i know it wasn't firecrackers, and that's why i know it was like gunshots. >> reporter: she was sitting on her dad's lap on her grandma's front porch when all hell broke loose this summer. the 10-year-old says her dad used his body to shield her from the flying bullets.
>> i heard, like, a lot, a lot of, like bone and stuff. i saw blood on his shirt. i thought i wouldn't see him again. >> reporter: their downstairs neighbor was playing video games by a window. >> when i heard the gunshots, i got on the floor. my mom grabbed me. she put me in a room so to hide me. >> reporter: they were lucky to survive the hail of bullets. but so many children are not. cnn analyzed the prolice crime data. one child is killed in chicago every week on average, a figure that's been true for the past quarter century. why is chicago so deadly? in an interview with "60 minutes," former chicago police superintendent says chicago cops are not actively
policing out of fear of putting themselves and their families in jeopardy. >> police are on their heels for a number of reasons. we see the results, don't we? we're reaching a state of lawlessness. >> reporter: of the 762 murders in 2016, 65% of the killings are happening in five districts on the south and west sides of the city where 59 rival gangs fight each other for territory, police say. to curb the violence more photographers a officers are being hired and gunshot detection technology allowing a faster response is being purchased. but until the killings stop -- >> i want to move from chicago. >> reporter: -- children are left dodging bullets since the two most likely places to get shot in chicago are the street or even the home. >> i feel sad and scared. i don't want to be shot. >> reporter: about president-elect donald trump's tweet regarding the violence in
chicago, here is a statement from the chicago mayor's office reading, as the president-elect knows from his conversation with the mayor, we agree the federal government has a strong role to play in public safety by funding summer jobs and prevention programming for at-risk youth, by holding the criminals who break our gun laws accountable for their crimes by passing meaningful gun laws and by building on the partnerships our police have with federal law enforcement, we are hardened. he is taking this issue seriously and look forward to working with the new administration on these important efforts. jim. >> rosa, we know the majority of chicago homicides coming from gun violence. what is the city doing to combat gun violence specifically? >> reporter: well, you know, they are doing a multitude of things. like they're trying to hire more police officers, they're using technology. but there is one specific thing that the police superintendent says that needs to happen, and he says that he is working with the state legislature to make
tougher laws that hold repeat gun offenders accountable. he says that that's the missing link, that even though they are seizing more guns, 8300 guns in production, that's 20% more than in 2015, even though they are catching, quote-unquote, more bad guys in 2016 than in 2015, he says, that unless the laws get tougher, jim, it will be very difficult for them to do their jobs. >> a real epidemic of violence. new year, new threat from kim jong un. north korea claims it's getting ready to test a missile that could hit very close to home. millions of you are online right now, searching one topic. that will generate over 600 million results. and if you've been diagnosed with cancer, searching for answers like where to treat, can feel even more overwhelming. so start your search with a specialist at cancer treatment centers of america.
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welcome back to "the lead." north korean leader kim jong un ringing in the new year with a new threat. boasting that his country is in the final stage of test launching an intercontinental ballistic missile. the recipe for a global catastrophe if the volatile communist country indeed is capable of combining ballistic missile with a miniaturized nuclear warhead. it could theoretically reach not only south korea and japan but in the worst-case scenario could reach the united states' west coast. i want to bring in cnn pentagon correspondent barbara starr. how seriously are u.s. officials taking the new claim from north korea? >> jim, the state department was very quick to weigh in and say
north korea should not engage in provocations, but there is no sign kim jong un is paying attention to that. north korea leader kim jong un's new year's day message -- he is almost ready to launch an intercontinental ballistic missile, an icbm, that could someday hit the u.s. >> translator: research and development of cutting-edge arms equipment is kwiact actively progressing and it's in its last stage. >> a security challenge donald trump could face very early on. trump has made clear on the campaign trail he wants china to deal with kim. >> we have to be very vigilant on north korea. we cannot let this guy go much further. and china should handle that problem. >> offering his own blunt assessment of the north korean leader. >> you have the guy in north korea, and he's probably crazy.
>> something donald trump and the current director of the cia appear to agree on when it comes to kim. >> he is delusional, because he believes that the world is going to accept a nuclear north korea and allow it to maintain that arsenal. >> u.s. war plans have long detailed a strike option, bombing the regime if it poses an immediate nuclear threat. but the intelligence community warns, the u.s. may have few cards to play. >> i think the notion of getting the north koreans to denuclearize is probably a lost cause. >> there is intelligence showing how far kim has moved ahead. >> the north koreans are very close to being able to make a nuclear weapon to their longest-range missiles and hit the united states. >> the north koreans have already tested an intercontinental long-range missile but it had a satellite on the front end not a war head.
north korea claims it's already tested a miniaturized warhead for an icbm. u.s. officials say they cannot verify that but have to work under the assumption it's true. north korea has conducted five underground nuclear tests. another could happen at any time with little or no warning, u.s. intelligence officials say. but north korea still has to master the technology to assure its icbm can hit a specific target. >> they need to improve their accuracy. they need to improve their range. but they also have a pretty fearsome missile program at this time. >> one of the strategy has been sanctions relief, essentially put more money in kim's pocket and, you know, require him to back off on his nuclear program. as a condition of that, a recent north korean defector says kim is no longer interested in money, financial aid or economic relief. he wants the world to acknowledge him as a nuclear
superpower. jim. >> it may have to. barbara starr, thanks very much. bringing in bruce bennett. senior defense analyst at the rand corporation think tank. thank you for joining me, bruce. starting with the simplest question. can in america's best judgment north korea today threaten the continental u.s. with a nuclear weapon? >> oh, probably not. north korea has had trouble with its even shorter-range missiles this year, this last year. they've launched eight different musudan missiles that have a 3,000 kilometer range and seven of those failed, including the last two. so kim jong un still has some distance to go before he is going to have all of this working. >> this former north korean diplomat who defected, he told our seoul affiliate that kim jong un is actually becoming more dangerous and more aggressive and that his plans for nuclear weapons even if they can't, say, reach the west coast of the u.s. is first strike, to
use them quickly and immediately. do you find that credible? >> yes. we have historical references from the kim family suggesting that they would be prepared to use nuclear weapons early in any conflict. so it is a concern. >> that would seem to be suicidal, i imagine. that would bring an overwhelming u.s. and western response. >> their argument is that, if they threaten u.s. cities, if we respond against them, that maybe we'll back off. maybe we'll be timid and not escalate. so they are not sure, especially with the obama administration, how we are going to act. we have not been clear. >> hmm. there is the same -- the same defector said kim jong un is eager to take advantage of any uncertainty that might emerge between the transition period between obama and trump. does it sound like a typical kim jong un strategy, something he would take advantage of it? >> oh, absolutely.
he is very anxious to take advantage anywhere he can. so president-elect trump has got to be very ready when he comes in to immediately take some actions. >> so what could those actions be? because successive administrations, republican and democrat, have tried negotiations, sanctions relief and economic sanctions, yet the march towards a nuclear weapon has continued. what can donald trump do differently that would be effective? >> well, there are a variety of things that he could try to do. deterrence is about convincing the other side that he is not going to get the benefits he expects. you could do that by threatening to shoot down north korean missiles that are tested. they violate multiple u.n. city council -- security council resolutions. he could say don't do them or you won't have a success. he could also take anti-north korea regime information operations, telling the north
korea people the way things really are in ways that our government has not been prepared to do in the past. >> is it also possible that the u.s., or donald trump, could order a military strike on north korean nuclear facilities? >> interestingly, in 2006 we had an op-ed from former secretary of defense william perry and the current secretary of defense ash carter saying that we should do exactly that if we saw an icbm on a launch pad. so it is conceivable. but the problem is, if we were to do that, north korea would likely open up artillery fire on seoul or some such threat. >> right. and seoul with millions of residents and tens of thousands of u.s. forces there. donald trump on the campaign trail, at least, suggested the idea of giving nuclear arms to u.s. allies in the region, south korea and japan. how would that change the dynamic? >> i don't think we want to do that. i don't think that's in u.s. interest. in fact, i seem to see him backing away from that
statement. the problem is, if for them to have nuclear weapons, they would have to leave the nuclear non-proliferation treaty. if they do, that treaty is largely dead. and that treaty has been the hallmark of u.s. nonproliferation policy. moreover, if south korea and japan had nuclear weapons, they may well start a nuclear arms race in the region with china, and that is something we don't want to have happen. >> enormous consequences. bruce bennett. thanks very much. >> thank you! a manhunt under way for the gunman behind the first terror attack of 2017. didn't take long. a new photo just released. that's next. ♪ (laughs) here it is. ♪
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in istanbul. turkish police hope this photo along with fingerprints can help to find the terrorist and his network. today isis claimed responsibility for the brutal killings. one american was among those hurt. it is the latest in a string of recent deadly attacks in turkey. cnn's sara sidner was live in istanbul. do we know if any of the eight people detained have any connections to the man on the run right now? >> reporter: that is what we are hearing from officials. they arrested -- excuse me -- detained these eight people in the neighborhood where the attack happened, which is a place where so many people go to enjoy themselves from all different kinds of backgrounds and socioeconomic levels. there are cafès, shops where you can buy items and, of course, at night there are several nightclubs. but the reina is the most famous. people go there, especially those who have the money. it is an upscale club right on
the bosporus. police are looking everywhere trying to figure out where this attacker is. they have detained those eight people saying they are questioning them in connection with this attack, though they've not given any further details as to whether any of the people knew anything about the attack or knew who this attacker is. >> this is, sadly, the latest in a string of really just brutal terror attacks in turkey. how is the turkish government responding to questions about its ability to prevent attacks like this? >> reporter: the response from the deputy prime minister, not too long ago today, basically said, look, we have foiled 248 attacks, including potential car bombings and bombings and shootings over several years. they are talking about all these attacks that could have happened that they say we thwarted. in 2016 they saw a lot of attacks, five attacks here.
now, not all of them were perpetrated, for example, by isis. in fact, isis -- this is the first time that isis has claimed an attack here on sort of an official level, although we cannot confirm whether or not that is from a very great source. however, it was all over twitter and a lot of isis followers were retweeting that. so the government here saying they have a lot on their hands, especially since, of course, they are on the border with syria, they share the border, the border is porous, and there have been a lot of fighters who have come through turkey into syria and then back into turkey. they have a lot to deal with, ever since the syrian government and the syrian regime crumbles. >> there was one american injured in the attack. is that right? >> reporter: that's right, an american who said that he showed up with nine people, and seven of the nine people he went into that club with ended up with bullet wounds, including he himself. he said something very poignant, talking about the fact that he is going to be able to go home
and easily wake up and have breakfast in america and yet everyone here has to worry about terrorism. >> 39 people killed, so many of them young. sara sidner, thank you so much. that will do it for me on "the lead." i'll turn you over now to the very capable hands of wolf blitzer. you'll find him in "the situation room." happening now, digital fingerprints. president-elect donald trump says he knows things that other people don't know about hacking and promises to reveal his information this week. digital fingerprints indicating russia orchestrated the election's cyber attack are giving the intelligence community growing confidence. nightclub massacre. isis claims responsibility for the slaughter at an istanbul nightclub. tonight, an american who survived the attack is speaking out as the man hunt for the gunman intensifies. cabinet battles. with the new congress about t