tv CNN Newsroom With Brooke Baldwin CNN August 9, 2017 12:00pm-1:00pm PDT
have diplomacy on the table and you're not going to keep going forward. >> so you believe that. >> i believe the president is making it very clear that the use of force is an option that i'm not going to run away from. if you think you can continue nuclear tests, continue a nuclear program, continuing threaten the world and directly saying you're coming after the united states of america, you need to know this is a new day. the last eight years of a policy that allowed you to get those weapons and to be this bully, we're not going to let you have another four years of that. >> okay, rick wilson, i want to make sure i get you in responding to the same question and responding to ben. what do you think? >> first off, ben's answer to you betrays a level of naivete about nuclear weapons and about the korean peninsula in specific, that is utterly staggering. >> why. >> weapons grade stupidity right there. the fact of the matter is, you can't -- you don't threaten people -- the deterrence model is this. you say to another country, if you hit me with nuclear weapons,
i will respond. therefore, neither country does it. you don't say, if you talk bad about me, if you threaten me, i could respond with fire and fury. that's not a code word for a little tap on the wrist. that's the code word for the first use of nuclear weapons. this is entirely out of the bounds of what a nation like ours should do. we could level north korea into a shimmering plane of glass. >> it doesn't mean that we're going to use nuclear weapons. this is the part where i say you're being irresponsible because you're saying the only option america had was nuclear weapons. >> i'm talking about deterrence and diplomacy. >> hang on, hang on. let rick finish. >> diplomacy has worked for this country for generations and the failures of administrations of both parties over the last 25 years have led north korea to be where it is now. you cannot argue that military strike on north korea, even in a non-nuclear strike, will not result until the deaths of
millions of south koreans, 100,000 americans. ben, listen. this is a matter by which you have displayed your absolute ignoran ignorance of the korean peninsula. this is not something where a military operation that you throw off the back of donald trump's shoot from the hip style could possibly lead to anything except incredibly damaging and horrifying death. >> let me go back in the point here. what you're missing, obviously, is you're implying that somehow over the last eight years, our policy of 100% diplomacy and deferring to japan and the united nations has somehow been a success. it's been a total failure. you and i wouldn't be having this conversation right now if it wasn't for the fact that they've been able to do exactly what they've done with their nuclear program and including have the ability to reach half the united states of america. if we keep going down the road that you're going down, and what you're saying is successful, then what does failure look like to you? 60 nuclear weapons, you're saying, is successful. having half of america be reached by north korea is
successful? >> i just said that the failures of administrations of both parties for the last 25 years in the korean peninsula have led us to this point. the fact of the matter is, though, that when you -- >> i'm sorry. that's just not accurate. >> fire and fury, you're in a whole different zone. you're in a whole different zone and it requires responsibility. >> this is, again, where you're -- >> and judgment, none of which donald trump has. >> with all due respect -- >> he's sitting there saying fire and fury, that's a threat of a nuclear strike. are you in favor of a nuclear strike, ben? are you in favor of a preemptive nuclear strike? >> listen to the words coming out of my mouth if you're going to ask a dumb question. >> it's a simple question, yes or no. do you favor a preemptive nuclear strike. >> it's not as simple as that. you're turning into second grade here. >> it's a simple question. donald trump laid it on the table. you love the guy. >> you obviously don't care what anyone else says.
>> do you think that's a great idea. >> i'm going to finish. >> let ben -- rick, rick, rick. hang on. let ben have a moment. >> listen carefully, because you're having a hard time understanding this. there are other options militarily besides only nuclear options. fire and fury does not necessarily mean only push the red button for a nuclear war. it is incredibly incompetent and ignorant to imply that the only option -- >> accept the fact that south korea will -- there are millions of casualties. >> that is not what the president said yesterday. you're implying. >> by which you accept -- >> there is more than one option. >> rick, let me cut through this for a second. ben, i totally understand the point you're making and how rick, you're arguing against it, but so, to ben's point, if the diplomacy thus far has not been working, what, in your opinion, and you have the state department saying let's give it a shot, let's get north korea at the table, in your opinion, what's the best option here? >> look, you have to move this into a deterrence frame.
and a deterrence frame is not threatening a preemptive strike. a deterrence frame is when weapons are deployed and used by north korea, if weapons are deployed and used by north korea, then a nuclear response is on the table but you don't lay it out there. >> you're going to wait for them to -- >> he was not talking about conventional strike. >> you're telling me that -- you're telling me the only time that the president can use the words fire and fury is literally if nuclear weapons are in the air? are you kidding me right now? that is the worse foreign policy i've ever heard in my entire life. >> ben, there are boundaries and there are ways you talk about deterrence. general mattis did it right today. donald trump shot from the lip as he usually does because he is ignorant of history. he is ignorant of strategy. he is ignorant of diplomacy and he's certainly ignorant of the use of deterrence. >> i get that you don't like donald trump but the foreign policy you're describing has been a failure over the last year. when the president says he's going to protect and defend the
united states of america and the only option you give the president is nuclear war, that just shows that you have no understanding. >> hang on, hang on. >> the option is active deterrence and diplomacy. >> we've done sanctions. >> let's move -- this is -- this is -- >> if you strike north korea with conventional weapons, ben, if you strike -- and i ask you this question, if you strike north korea with conventional weapons, you understand that the most heavily armored area of the world for artillery is on the south korean border with north korea. they will slog the hell out of south korea and out of seoul. this is not going to be pretty and you're saying that you think there are no consequences to this kind of action and it's really irresponsible. >> no. no. >> i want to stop. i want to just pivot, please. let me just ask, ben, to you, and then rick i want you to weigh in on the different messaging coming out of the white house. so you have the language, fire and fury, that the president uses. then you have the language that we've heard from both tillerson and from mattis. it's not all entirely on the
same page. i don't know if you guys were listening to admiral kirby a second ago on how, essentially, it's been a catch-up situation as this was off the cuff, ben, so can you speak to the issue of not all being on the same page. >> i think the president was being blunt and off the cuff. it was very clear from how he said that that it was off the cuff but i think the tone was -- >> should you be off the cuff on north korea. >> i think the words that people obsessed with him saying are fire and fury are words that, you know what, do you want him to use a different word. his point was to speak directly to kim jong un and to make it very clear that it is a new day, you're not going to get away. >> but he didn't give his administration a heads up on using that kind of language about north korea. >> let me say this. i think that there are multiple ways that you can deal with diplomacy. only having a kumbaya diplomacy that we've gone, which is go to japan, go to the united nations, and all of a sudden we'll kind of set back a little bit, that has been a failure to the point where half of america's now at risk and you have a crazy guy with nuclear weapons and he can
actually deliver in a real capacity. >> but that still doesn't mean that the president should be speaking off the cuff when it comes to north korea. >> his policy is, we're going to be tough. now, can you have good cop/bad cop with the state department? absolutely. i think that's what you've seen today. >> how is that effective. >> i think you have to have more than one avenue to talk to kim jong un because the one avenue of sole diplomacy has gotten us nowhere but a guy who now has nuclear weapons that he can deliver to half the united states of america. it did not work for eight, nine years. you're talking nine-plus years, nine and a half to be conservative, and now he has more of an arsenal than he's ever had before even while sanctions have been imposed. you can do two things at once but the president is not going to sit there and be bullied. >> the president, as he always does, the president, as he always does, shot from the lip. he was riffing. he was whatever impulsive thing that drives him drove him at that moment. and so yes, you had to see the entire administration play catch-up, and in a matter as
consequential as a potential nuclear exchange, you have to have probity and you have to have judgment, and you have to have discipline, and donald trump has never displayed those at any point in his life or career, so everybody that's scrambling -- and by the way, i've talked to my friends in the military today who are in this world, and the sense was, oh dear god. it wasn't, hey, this is great, let's get on board with this great policy. it was, oh dear god. >> there was no policy that was announced. it was the president defending the fact that you have a leader that has weapons that he can deliver it ha deliver. >> the president's words become policy. >> the policy of saying if you continue to come after america, we will defend ourselves is a policy that i'm pretty sure every president in my lifetime has had. >> when he said fire and fury, he didn't mean a sternly worded letter. >> so be kind and give him a hug and send him a gift? is that what you want diplomacy to be for a guy with nuclear weapons? >> you really think that's what i'm suggesting?
>> i mean, it's just -- that's a foreign policy over the last nine years that has been a failure. so we have nuclear weapons that guy has now. so i would say it might be time to try something else. >> you are unbelievably irresponsible and ignorant of the korean peninsula. it's astounding. >> on that, we're going to go. rick wilson and ben ferguson, it's been a pleasure. a thanks so much. let's continue on, shall we. breaking news here. the u.s. secretary of defense has just issued what is perhaps the fiercest warning yet against north korea's nuclear threats. we were talking about all this messaging out of the white house. you now have the secretary of defense, general james mattis, saying this, that north korea should cease any consideration of actions that will lead to the end of the regime and destruction of its people. the u.s. and north korea trading barbs after the revelation that north korea has likely produced a miniaturized nuclear warhead that can be strapped to its missiles. president trump vowing to bring fire and fury if north korea
continues to threaten the u.s. the state department is also responding to new north korean threats to attack this small u.s. territory of guam. and it insists that administration officials and president trump are on the same page despite secretary of state rex tillerson playing down the fears of a war with north korea. >> but the united states is on the same page. whether it's the white house, the state department, the department of defense, we are speaking with one voice. and the world is, in fact, speaking with one voice, and we saw that as it came out of the u.n. security council with the resolution that passed less than a week ago. the united states, along with other nations, condemned north korea for their destabilizing activities. they've continued to take part of that. two icbm launches in less than a month's period of time. the world remains very concerned about that. >>let go to sara murray, cnn white house correspondent there, traveling, following the president on his working
vacation. sara, what is the president saying that prompted these questions to this spokeswoman at the state department? >> reporter: well, brooke, obviously we saw a very fiery statement from the president yesterday, fire and fury. we are now told that he basically came up with that on the spot, although other administration officials were aware of what he said, but the president's sort of aggressive posturing is continuing today. he took to twitter to say, my first order as president was to renovate and modernize our nuclear arsenal. it is now far stronger and more powerful than ever before. hopefully we will never have to use this power, but there will never be a time that we are not the most powerful nation in the world. and brooke, it's worth noting that when the president came into office, he did order a review of the u.s. nuclear arsenal, but if he were to aggressively modernize it, that would take congress approving a large amount of funds to do so, and if we were going to aggressively change america's nuclear capability, there are treaties that govern that so this sort of had to be an international discussion. so it's unclear what trump has
actually done, if anything, when it comes to the u.s. nuclear arsenal but it is clear that he wants to send a signal to north korea to kim jong un that the u.s. has a strong positioning on this, that the u.s. is prepared to act if tensions continue to escalate. obviously, though, the president's language has caused some concern, including from some members of his own party who say, look, this may be trump's style but this is not how presidents usually conduct diplomacy, especially when you're talking about an issue as sensitive as north korea. >> sara, thank you so much. from new jersey to guam, we go. ivan watson is our senior international correspondent live in guam. 5:13 in the morning where you are. we know the u.s. has an air force base there. secretary tillerson trying to, you know, reassure americans during a visit there. a very different tone from what we heard from the president. what exactly did he tell those reporters in guam? >> reporter: that there was no new threat to this island, that
he did not consider redirecting the itinerary of his flight that stopped here for refuelling. that's part of why guam is so important to the u.s. military. it's a refuelling point. it's a place to launch planes and ships from. listen, i believe we have some sound from the secretary of state as he was passing through here. let's take a listen. >> i think the president -- what the president was doing was sending a strong message to north korea in language that kim jong un would understand. because he doesn't seem to understand diplomacy language, but i think what the president was just reaffirming is the united states has the capability to fully defend itself from any attack and defend our allies, and we will do so. and so the american people should sleep well at night. >> reporter: and the people of guam, whether or not they're sleeping well, that's an important question because after all, north korea did threaten to envelope this small island in fire, brooke. when we landed at the airport
after midnight, a border guard, a u.s. border guard, joked with us, welcome to ground zero. so, people here know about the news. but we're not seeing any signs of panic. the hotels here seem overbooked, if anything. it's hard to get a hotel room here. and we came on a flight from south korea, of all places, that was full of asian tourists coming here to presumably enjoy balm's beaches and scuba diving. >> okay. ivan, thank you so much. live in guam. coming up, we'll analyze all of the breaking news here on this north korean threat. also ahead, breaking news in the russia investigation today. we've learned that the fbi raided the home of the man who once ran president trump's campaign, paul manafort. details on what exactly those fbi agents seized and what it tells us about the state of investigation. stay with us. for your heart...
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officials tell cnn that president trump spoke off the cuff, that he improvised his fire and fury threat. that line against north korea. so, let's begin there. bruce, former cia deputy division chief for korea recently met with korean officials, and former cnn counterterrorism official. phil mudd, to you first, you heard the spokes woman defending the president's phraseology of fire and fury saying that the president used the same language that kim jong un would use so that he would understand the message that the pressure campaign is working. do you agree? >> that's downright goofy. let me explain why. >> goofy. okay. >> there's a theory that the president is violating every day and it's called the rational actor model. the president assumes that an
adversary that he doesn't understand and a potential adversary who does not have a good window on the world is going to interpret the message the president offered in the same way the president meant it. the president wants to speak to his base and potentially intimidate kim jong un. why would we assume that kim jong un takes that comment and interprets it how the president wants. if i were him, i would say, i don't understand this guy. he speaks off the cuff. he's engaged in military exercises, and maybe he actually does want to topple me, so why shouldn't i accelerate my military operations, including the development of a nuclear weapon. i think the president needs to be more careful because he's assuming he knows how kim jong un is going to interpret what he says. not true. >> you, bruce, i don't want to say you speak the language of the north koreans, but you've spoken to the north koreans. you know how to be effective with the north koreans. what do you make of the president's choice of language and how he should be responding moving forward. >> well, his language sounded
like it was penned by pyongyang. and in a way, it's been a distraction from what had been the first of the big stories in the last 24 hours, which was the leak of the intelligence assessment that north korea has warheads for its icbm. again, it's a cia assessment or a dia assessment. it's the best assessment that analysts have. but it's something that is a long time coming. it shouldn't come as a surprise to anyone, and we can debate whether north korea has the capability today or tomorrow or next year, but i think that's the real focus. the president's comments, he was trying to reassure our allies of u.s. resolve. he was trying to deter north korea. i think the language was unhelpful. i think it was a distraction. so, as we move forward, we've seen comments by secretary mattis who is showing resolve for our allies, but in response to if north korea were to attack us, and secretary tillerson's comments, i think, were more diplomatic in that trying to point out that, you know, we are not seeking to initiate
hostilities with north korea, but we will respond accordingly. now, that seems to fly in the face of comments by national security adviser mcmaster who said the government has told the military to prepare for the option of a preventive attack, even though officials say that could have catastrophic consequences. >> phil, what do you think of this whole good cop/bad cop routine. >> well, you talk about it beforehand to determine who plays which role. we know the president didn't have that conversation because his comments were improvised so if it's good cop/bad cop, how did we plan before the president went off to make those comments. there's a simple rule of thumb and that is the hotter the kitchen gets, the cooler the cook gets. in this situation, rex tillerson is saying let's take some air out of the balloon. notice how often he talked about the word dialogue. the president in the midst of a dialogue, i guess, or a conversation with a dictator halfway around the world has decided he has to make the
kitchen hotter. that violates the fundamental principle of crisis management, keep cool when it gets hot. >> i'm listening to you and i also just want to get to this sound, just speaking of how the president speaks. here's a quick example and then we'll talk on the other side. >> we're being very, very strong on our southern border, and i would say the likes of which this country certainly has never seen that kind of strength. grassroots movement, the likes of which the world has never seen before. you came by the tens of millions to become part of a historic movement the likes of which the world has never seen before. we're all part of this very historic movement, a movement the likes of which, actually, the world has never seen before. i see it now, even more than i saw it in this great campaign, which turned out to be a
movement, a movement like the world has never seen before, actually. unemployment is the lowest it's been in 17 years. business enthusiasm is about as high as they've ever seen it. we're unleashing a new era of american prosperity, perhaps like we've never seen before. >> call it what you will, a verbal tick, enthusiasm, hyperbole, here's my question. the world is watching. do you think north korea will take this threat based upon how he has spoken in the past about things. will they take him seriously? >> right, well, messages received sometimes are different from the intended message delivered. our allies are concerned about what u.s. intentions are, whether we will initiate a preventive attack against north korea, which could precipitate an all-out war on the peninsula. also, with north korea, they are, you know, they use the u.s.
rhetoric and claims of hostile policy as justification for their nuclear policies, but what i'm concerned about is the danger of miscalculation. when we have south korea, north korea, and the u.s. all talking about preemption or preventive attack and others saying we will preempt your preemption, we could stumble across a red line by miscalculation. so if the talk about preventive attack or preemptive attack and this kind of rhetoric of never seen before, is that beyond hiroshima and nagasaki? all of that gets thrown into a very volatile mix of each side trying to determine what the other's intentions or likely actions are. north korea, if they feel they are about to attack, may feel they need to lash out first. >> bruce and phil, gentlemen, thank you both so, so much. coming up here, we have -- we'll talk to a top senator, get his reaction to president trump's threats, warnings to new
york. also ahead, more on our other breaking news, the raid on the home of a former trump campaign chairman, paul manafort. stay here. hi..and i know that we have phonaccident forgiveness.gent, so the incredibly minor accident that i had tonight- four weeks without the car. okay, yup. good night. with accident forgiveness your rates won't go up just because of an accident. switching to allstate is worth it.
all right. there are breaking developments in the russia investigation. we are learning the fbi raided the home of a man who once ran president trump's campaign, a man by the name of paul manafort. fbi agents executed the so-called no-knock warrant early, early in the morning at manafort's washington area home in late july. this happened the day after manafort met with senate
intelligence investigators, and a source tells cnn that those fbi agents seized financial and tax records, including documents that manafort had already given to congress. so, with me now, on his august recess, democratic senator chris van hollen from the great state of maryland. senator, thank you so much for taking the time. >> great to be with you. >> so quickly off the top on the manafort news, when you heard that the fbi raided his home, what was the first thing you thought? >> well, it's a strong signal that special counsel mueller and his team are really actively engaged. they're going to turn over every stone in this investigation. they're not going to let people sit back and stall the investigation. so, it tells me that they're going forward full speed ahead. >> okay. on north korea, senator, we have, you know, learning from the white house that the president's whole fire and fury line was off the cuff, that it
was improvise. your reaction to that. >> well, you've seen what happened today, brooke. secretary of state tillerson has had to really clean up the mess created by president trump's very dangerous comments, because it appeared that the president was creating a new red line, saying that if north korea crossed the red line, whether that meant building more nuclear weapons or more missiles, that the united states would initiate this fire and fury. secretary tillerson essentially walked that back and said that the united states would continue to defend itself and itself allies against north korea if north korea took hostile action. that has been traditional american policy that we would respond with overwhelming force if north korea initiated a conflict and hostilities. but what the president did was dangerous, because it created this new possible red line,
putting american credibility at stake, and i should say, brooke, when you engage in this war of words with the north korean leader, it actually enhances the north korean leader. this is exactly what kim jong un wants to see happen, and it diminishes the president of the united states. >> but the state department says he's speaking a language that pyongyang can understand. >> yeah, but the reality is the ambiguity in the president's statement is what created the problem here. because what the president essentially said was, if you threaten us, we will initiate overwhelming response with fire and fury. if that's what the president's saying, it creates a very new and different red line, and that's what's so dangerous about this. because as senator mccain and others have said, the united states needs to be very clear on what our policy is. we need to be firm and steady, not popping off the way the president did. >> sure, and senator mccain said
no other president in history would have used that kind of language. but senator van hollen, here's my question. isn't it possible that this -- call it what you will, over the top, unpredictable, these sort of tactics that the president is using, that it might actually work because we have had, you know, 30 years of bipartisan failures on getting anything done, concretely, on north korea. >> no, i'm glad you raised that. what will work is steady and very firm pressure on north korea through our allies, especially the chinese, which is why -- >> but isn't that what they've tried thus far the last several decades. >> yeah, but here's the thing. you can pass sanctions at the united nations. you can pass sanctions at the united states. that's just words on a piece of paper unless they're actually eneforced, which is why senator toomey and i have introduced bipartisan legislation modeled after the iran sanctions so we really put teeth in these sanctions. right now chinese banks, chinese
firms and others are saying that they're complying with the sanctions, but they're not. they're violating the sanctions right and left, which continues to provide aid and comfort for the north korean regime. so what we need to do is pass legislation like the iran sanctions legislation that actually puts teeth in this, gets the attention of china. one of the things president trump has done is he's gone hot and cold on china with respect to north korea. what we need is a firm message to china saying, you can't just go to the united nations security council and say you're going to implement sanctions. you've actually got to follow through. and that's the whole purpose of our bipartisan legislation, and i think we're going to have hearings and i think we're going to have a vote on that when we come back. >> then it's also making sure china really, really follows through. let me ask you this. nuclear expert jeffery lewis, senator, he recently said that the best chance to stop north korea was actually in the late 1990s before north korea had nuclear bombs, and he put some
of the blame on the clinton administration. do you agree there's fault there? >> look, if you go back over the history of negotiations with north korea, you'll see they went through the clinton administration, they went through the george w. bush administration, not so much during the obama administration because we kind of learned our lesson that those negotiations won't work unless there's overwhelming economic pressure on north korea. there were moments back in the late 1990s where we thought we had a deal, where an exchange for more economic support for north koreans, they would stop their nuclear program. that clearly did not work. but what did bring them to the table at the time was the -- some economic pressure that the united states was threatening to bring. we need to recreate that and even more so. and china is key here. i mean, i know everybody says it, but china cannot just, you
know, say the right words. they can't just, you know, talk the talk. we've got to pressure them, and we've got to pressure them through the threat of secondary sanctions with respect to taking north korea seriously. because what's happening now -- and this was illustrated in a recent u.n. report -- is that a lot of banks and firms in china and some other countries are continuing to do business with north korea, and it's only when we say that either you do business with north korea or you have access to the u.s. markets, you won't get both, will those firms really wake up and will the pressure really be brought to bear on north korea, which is why this bipartisan sanctions legislation -- but sanctions with teeth. it's more of an enforcement mechanism as opposed to just more and more sanctions that are not enforced. >> sanctions with teeth. okay. senator chris van hollen, i hope it works.
thank you so much. thank you for your time. when we get back to the news. i mentioned a moment ago about that fbi raid at the home of president trump's former campaign manager's home, paul manafort. a former federal prosecutor is with me. so just first on the face of this, the fact that it was this, you know, raid in the early morning hours, you say the fact that investigators were able to attain a warrant there to do that is telling. tell me why. >> well, it means that investigators believe that there is probable cause -- in other words, there's good reason to believe that a crime was committed, and that evidence of that crime would be found in the home of paul manafort. and that also means that they got a federal judge to agree to that, so that means that there's an independent person, a federal judge, who decided that there was sufficient evidence that a crime occurred, and that it would be in his home. >> this is what -- let me just
read for everyone. this is what paul manafort's spokesman told cnn. fbi agents executed a search warrant at one of mr. manafort's residences. mr. manafort has consistently cooperated with law enforcement and other serious inquiries and did so on this occasion as well. so, do you read any more into it? i mean, the fact that he has cooperated, you know, how do you see it. >> well, i think there's a couple of important takeaways there. first of all, the fbi could have just sent a subpoena to mr. manafort's attorneys if they wanted to get documents. and that's a lot cheaper, and it's a lot easier. it costs less. so the fact that they executed a search warrant suggests to me that the fbi believed that they would not get all of the evidence that they wanted if they sent a subpoena. and that could be for a number of reasons. but it could be because they were concerned about destruction of evidence. it could mean that they thought that some evidence would be withheld on fifth amendment
grounds. but that would ordinarily be what that means. i mean, maybe they were being overly careful but it's an unusual thing to do. it also indicates that at the time that this search warrant was executed, paul manafort had not flipped on anyone. he was not cooperating with the government actively against somebody else. you don't execute search warrants in the homes of your cooperators. they are doing everything they can to help you. so, he may be cooperative by responding to the requests of the government, but he's not being as forthcoming as the fbi might like. >> okay. renato, thank you. back to our breaking news on north korea. cnn goes inside the bunker where hawaiians are preparing for potential strike. we're live in honolulu coming up. your insurance company
launches a nuclear strike aimed at them. as pyongyang and the white house ratchet up the rhetoric, hawaii is actually preparing for that possibility to protect itself more than 1 million people who live on the islands, and they're doing it from a concrete reinforced bunker on the edge of a crater. sara sidner, we send her to honolulu. she is outside of this bunker. sara, tell me about the preparations. >> reporter: look, they've been preparing for many months now, and just what you're seeing now is not the reason for these preparations, but they are noticing that things have ratcheted up, and they're trying to make sure that the population understands what to do in the unlikely event that there is a nuclear attack from north korea. you mentioned the timing, and that's really important. the reason why they want families to have plans in place is because it only takes 20 minutes from the point of launch to the point of detonation in hawaii, if that is where kim jong un and the north korean regime decided to send a nuclear bomb with an icbm.
so, not much time to plan in 20 minutes. you should have that plan in place beforehand. i want to bring in someone who knows way more about this than i ever will, mr. vern miyagi, the administrator for the emergency management agency here in hawaii. you are part of this planning process. can you give us some idea of what you're working on now. >> right now, the main plan is to preparedness, and that's to make sure that people in hawaii understand what's going to happen, what they have to do. this is really for all hazards but we're focusing it right now on the nuclear effect. >> reporter: there are a lot of hazards in hawaii. it is a beautiful place. it is paradise but there is peril in paradise, you have volcanos and hurricanes and potential tsunamis. you are going to do something that you haven't done since the cold war. tell me what it is that hawaii is planning on doing in the next several months. >> reporter: okay. this is the siren sounding.
right now, we have one single siren to alert people to tsunamis and hurricanes. because of the timing on this one, we have very little time, we're going to activate a new -- old attack alert siren and what this will do, it's a wailing tone, and it will alert people to take shelter, shelter in place. >> reporter: it happens that mr. miyagi and his staff let us listen to what that tone will sound like when they do decide to test it and they want people to know what the sound is is what to do when the sound goes off in the event that there is actually a nuclear attack. i have here for you. i'm going to play it for you off the phone. this will obviously not be played off a phone. it will be going out from the sirens that are on the beaches and the neighborhoods. here's what it sounds like, brooke. [ siren ]
so, that will go on and on, and it sort of sounds like a wave, and it is different from the tone that would be used or that currently is used to warn people about, for example, a tsunami, and that is what emergency planners want to impart to the public, that when you hear this sound, there are different things you want to be doing as opposed to, let's say, if there's a tsunami. let's talk about that. what should people do if they hear the sound and there is actually a nuclear attack? >> okay. let me emphasize one thing is that this is not in place yet. we're working on this. we have to make sure the technology, we can handle this and the counters can and pass it on. it is not in effect yet. i've had some calls from the radio stations saying that we're testing this now. we are not testing this now. >> reporter: you're still working on getting it put in place so it works perfectly when you do test it. >> that's correct. we need to make sure we do it right. your question was about the what to do when we hear this -- when this siren is activated and
we're full on as far as operational, people will have to shelter in place immediately. that's because of the short time between missile launch and missile impact. so, shelter in place immediately. >> reporter: i have to wrap this up but i do want to mention one really important thing that mr. miyagi told us and that is that a lot of people on the island will talk about a nuclear attack and say, you know, why prepare because, we'll all perish if there's an attack. the response to that is, what nuclear capabilities that korea has now, north korea has now is very similar to what the u.s. had back in world war ii. we're talking about the bomb that fell on hiroshima. if that is the case, it means that hundreds of thousands of people will survive. how you survive, how long you survive, that is all going to depend on the plan you put in place and the plan that is executed by the emergency management folks in the military here. >> it's crazy we're even having this conversation. thank goodness for the
preparations. here's hoping he will never, ever have to push that siren button. thank you to mr. miyagi so much. breaking moments ago, the state department addressing a mysterious situation involving american diplomats in cuba. americans returning to the u.s. after coming down with unexplained physical symptoms. the u.s. booting cuban diplomats in an apparent response. we're live in havana.
we're getting some breaking news. an unusual situation unfolding in cuba regarding some personnel. some u.s. government personnel in havana reported incidents that had caused them, quote, physical symptoms? some of those staffers affected have returned to the u.s. earlier this year in apparent response to the situation, the u.s. expelled two cuban diplomats. let's go to cuba. explain this to me, because the u.s. believes employees in havana have been subjected to acoustic attacks? what does that even mean? >> reporter: that's a good question. essentially what has been described to my colleague and myself is that u.s. employees here at the u.s. embassy in havana were essentially targeted
by people unknown and were so physically traumatized by these, quote, acoustic attacks that they had to go back to the u.s. for treatment. and the cuban government has not issued any kind of statement to officially deny this, but one cuban official i did speak with said they were aware of the situation, it was brought up with them months ago. at the time they denied it, they continue to deny it, and they feel this expulsion of the diplomats was over. before relations improved with the united states, brooke, there used to be this sort of tit for tat where tires might be slashed, people might be harassed, diplomats in havana or diplomats in the u.s. if they were carrying out work that cuba did not like. they strenuously said to me they were not behind this. the u.s. seems to be pointing the finger at cuba and said once again u.s. diplomats are facing
some sort of harassment here in havana, enough so that two had to leave and we've seen this expulsion response expelling two cuban diplomats back to cuba. a difficult situation, brooke. >> let's go back a step. we were listening to the state department briefing the past hour. we were really listening for the threads on north korea and what arose was what happened in havana. here's a spokeswoman. >> some u.s. department personnel that were working at our embassy in havana, cuba on official duty, so they were working on behalf of the u.s. embassy there. they reported some incidents which have caused a variety of physical symptoms. i'm not going to be able to give you a ton of information about this today but i'll tell you what we can provide so far. we don't have any definitive answers about the source or the cause of what we consider to be incidents. we can tell that you on may 23rd, the state department took further action. we asked two officials who were
accredited at the embassy of cuba in the united states to depart the united states. those two individuals have departed the united states. we take this situation very seriously. >> so it's my understanding, patrick, that the fbi is now looking into this whole matter? they're quoted as saying, this is very strange. is the fbi in cuba investigating? >> reporter: no, as far as we know, but of course we're just learning about this minute by minute. of course, that would require cuban government permission, so at this point we're not aware of any fbi investigating. they're probably investigating the diplomats, but we just don't know what their investigation will entail. this is something that used to happen before relations improved with cuba. there would be harassment on both sides and you would hear about people being followed, having their tires slashed, having their houses broken into, and certain u.s. diplomats would tell these stories. in recent years as relations improved between the two
countries, it seemed that that was stopping. now, of course, president trump has reset relations with cuba, said he's going to be much tougher on the cuban government on issues like human rights, and it remains to be seen whether or not diplomats are once again being targeted. but as one cuban official told me, they are denying that they had anything to do with this, brooke. >> all right. patrick in havana, thank you. thanks for being with me. we're going to leave here. i'm brooke baldwin. "the lead" with jake tapper begins now. good evening, i'm jake tapper. the rhetoric in the u.s.-north korea standoff intensifying again today. james mattis the latest to issue a stark warning, saying kim jong-un must choose to stop isolating itself and stand down to pursuit of nuclear weapons. they need to end this regime and the destruction of its