tv Face the Nation CBS October 27, 2019 8:30am-9:00am PDT
juul. no on big tobacco. no on prop c. captioning sponsored by cbs >> brennan: it's sunday, october 27th, and this is "face the nation." i'm margaret brennan, and there is bg news this morning in the war against isis, and it's a blockbuster. just a for short time ago, president trump announced that the u.s. had conducted a special operations mission that killed the senior leader of the terrorist group the islamic state or isis, abu bakr al-baghdadi. >> last night the united states brought the world's number-one terrorist leader to justice. abu bakr al-baghdadi is dead. he died like a dog.
he died like a coward. the world is now a much safer place. >> brennan: mr. trump detailed the raid and al-baghdadi's death in graphic terms. >> i got to watch much of it. he died after running into a dead end tunnel, whimpering and crying and screaming all the way. he had dragged three of his young children with him. they were led to certain death. he reached the end of the tunnel, as our dogs chased him down. he ignited his vest, killing himself and the three children. his body was mutilated by the blast, but test results gave certain, immediate, and totally positive identification. it was him. >> brennan: and vice president pence is on his way here from an
interview across the street. he will be speaking with us, but while we wait, we are lucky to be able to turn now to cbs news national security correspondent david martin. you are here, david, listening with me to the president describe in longer than 45 minutes in graphic detail this raid. he said he was watching it from the situation room happen. what stood out to you? >> well, in the first place, we should say one of the headlines is no u.s. casualties, except the dog who he described went into the tunnel after al-baghdadi and was injured by the blast when al-baghdadi set off his suicide vest. and then the question was, well, if somebody is going to blow themselves up, how do you identify their remains? he said they had d.n.a. samples with them and were able to make a match within 15 minutes of al-baghdadi blowing himself up, and then they collected all the
body parts and brought them out with them along with some unspecified number of prisoners who had surrendered. and he gave some idea of the scope of this operation. he said, all told it took about four and a half hours, an hour and ten minutes in, two hours on the ground, an hour and ten minutes out. >> brennan: we don't know where it was launched from. >> we don't. we're going to have to do some backtracking to see where you can get from in an hour and ten minutes. but this was a large force, eight helicopters to just put it in perspective. the force that went into bin bin lade compound two helicopt5 ners, 2y seals. they had some others in reserve, but this sounded like it was a bigger operation and one which had been in the works for a number of weeks. he said they had somehow found
out his travel schedule but that one of al-baghdadi's security procedures is to change his mind about where he's going next at at the last member. but he went to this one place, and the president said they were able to confirm that he was there, gave a launch, and it took off shortly after 5:00 p.m. yesterday. >> brennan: the president was narrating it in such detail it was almost movie like in his description. but as he described baghdadi, he talked about the others in the room, including many new members of his national security team. he also did acknowledge the c.i.a. director who was key to so much of. this you learned it was delta force commandos who told this out. >> that's what i've learned. >> brennan: the president didn't reveal that detail in his remarks. >> the army equivalent to the
navy seals. i haven't had anybody tell me. this i would imagine there was small group of delta force that would go into the compound, the compound would be surrounded by a larger group of probably army rangers providing security to keep anybody from coming to the compound. >> brennan: david martin, you have been busy reporting. thank you very much for joining us. we doant to take a closer look at abu bakr al-baghdadi, who he was, why he was such a high-value target. he was not only the leader of isis, he was blamed for that rea fnd followers allve. around the world. foreign correspondent holly williams has more on who he was. >> reporter: he proclaimed himself the caliph or leader of the so-called islamic state, but in reality abu bakr al-baghdadi was a hate preacher who presided
over a death cult of utter barrty. with a $25 million reward offered by the u.s., he was rarely captured on camera. this video released in april was his first appearance in five years and apparently hi last. it's thought he was born in iraq in 1971. after the u.s. invasion of iraq in 2003, baghdadi was detained in a prison camp that became an incubator for justice departmenties. when he was released, he join al qaeda's offshoot in iraq, rising to become its leader. he later proved into the chaos of syria's civil war and split from al qaeda. at its peang, isis ruled over an estimated 10 million people in iraq and syria. the loss of their last group of territory in march, and new bad daddy won't be the end of their ideology. >> brennan: that's cbs news foreign correspondent holly williams who now joins us from istanbul, turkey, this morning. holly, the president describes
baghdadi as the number-one terrorist in the world. does removing him from the battlefield actuly kill isis itself? >> reporter:, no it won't, margaret. i mean, for isis, this is a very significant and symbolic loss of their so-called caliph. it shows the u.s. will spare no effort in hunting down the leaders of terrorist organizations, but in the end, isis is not about one man. it's the expression of an ideology. it's not the first terrorist group of this type, and it certainly won't be the last. al-baghdadi and isis were particularly blood firsty and by setting up a so-called caliphate, by seizing land and territory, holding on to it for a while, and implementing their investigation of islamic law. with other jihadist group, when they have lost their leaders, they very quickly replace them. i think we will see that happen here. one potential successor is a character named abu abdel la
kardash. he apparently spent time in a prison camp involving the u.s. invasion in 2003. >> brennan: holly, he is, as you say, a symbolic loss, but since you spent so much time on the ground inside of syria, what is the state of isis today? >> reporter: margaret, you heard president trump say we obliterated his cal fate, and that's true in the sense that isis lost its last remaining group of territory back in march, but the pentagon's own watchdog said in august that isis still has between 14,000 and 18,000 members in iraq and syria, and kurdish forces in eastern syria are saying they say around 12,000 accused isis fighters in their prison. we spoke with a u.s. general in syria just last month, and he described those prisoners as a "contained fighting force." so, yes, i has lost all of
its territory now in syria and iraq, but, no, it is not a spent force. >> brennan: holly williams there reporting from istanbul. thank you. and joining us now here in studio with more details of the raid is vice president mike pence. good morning to you, mr. vice president. >> morning, margaret. >> brennan: you were in the situation room watching this as it happened. >> i was. >> brennan: tell me about the decision behind -- when was it made? who made it? >> well, first let me just say this is a great day for america. al-baghdadi, the most wanted man in the world is dead, and it's a tribute to the courage of our armed forces, special forces that executed the raid on the compound last night, but it's also a tribute to the decisiveness of president donald trump. we first received information early in the week about the possibility of his location. >> brennan: through the
c.i.a.? >> through our intelligence agencies that the president rightly commended today through a combination of intelligence, surveillance surveillance, reconnaissance. we believed we knew where he would be. by thursday afternoon the president and i were informed that there was a high probability he would be at the compound in idlib province. the president immediately directed our commanders to develop military options. those were presented to the president at the white house on friday morning, but it was saturday morning that we received the actionable intelligence that allowed the decision that the president had made to move forward to happen. and it is -- it was incredible to be in the situation room and to see this unfold in real-time as our special forces were on the ground, to see their professionalism over a period of two hours. but america and the world are
safer today with the leader of isis dead. >> brennan: according to u.s. intelligence, isis has about eight branches. it had that battleground it has lost in iraq and syria, but it has a significant force in afghanistan and inspiration all around the world. so what impact will taking out baghdadi have on the rest of those tentacles? >> well, as the president said today, what the united states demonstrated, this president, this country will be unrelenting in our fight against isis or any terrorist organization that threatens this country. >> brennan: what does that mean for the drawdown of u.s. forces from columbia? has iraq agreed to host the majority of the presence being pulled out of syria? >> we have a military presence in iraq. we have an ongoing military presence in parts of syria, but to be clear, you know, the president looked at the deployment of american forces in
between traditionally kurdish syria and the turkish border, and essentially believed that that was not the right place for our forces to be. american forces went into syria, worked with our syrian kurdish allies to destroy the isis caliphate. the last inch of territory the isis caliphate was captured in march, and the president looked at the circumstances, where we had american forces essentially providing a safe zone patrol on the turkish border. that was not the mission. i have to tell you, as the father of a united states marine, i couldn't be more grateful that we have a commander-in-chief that is always asking about whether or not american forces have to be in harm's way. and if they're not on a mission, isis, the caliphate had been destroyed, the president said, we'll bring them home, but last
night, the president of the united states proved to the world that our fight against isis is unrelenting, and by killing the leader of isis, the active operational leader of isis who it was reported two weeks ago was giving orders to isis fighters in syria, we believe we'll have a measurable impact on the effectiveness of that terrorist organization, but we're not going to let up, we're not going to stop the fight, and at the same time, we'll continue to work with our allies to establish that safe zone between kurdish syria and turkey that the president had myself and secretary of state mike pompeo negotiate in ankara just a week ago. >> brennan: but do i understand what you're saying is that the number of u.s. troops remaining in syria is still being determined? you haven't locked in at a number yet? >> well, we have troops, and the president has made it clear we will have forces to secure the oil fields in northern syria in order to then create a
collaborative relationship on that -- >> brennan: more than 200 roughly? >> -- with our kurdish-syrian allies. this operation last night was real testament to the relationship we've formed with syrian democratic forces, who i can't detail, but played a role in this in terms of information that we were provided. turkey's cooperation during the assault last night was acknowledged today by the president. they fully cooperated with the deployment of special force, but all the credit goes here to the decisiveness of this commander-in-chief and to the courage and professionalism of the special forces of the united states. we literally watched in real-time, margaret, as those helicopters set down, as they assaulted the compound, and we heard those words that
al-baghdadi had been killed, and i knew fromha moment america was safer as a result. >> brennan: mr. vice president, i also want to ask you while you're here, you have been clear in saying there was no pressure put on ukraine, no quid quo pro as it pertains to what is now being looked at for grounds of potential impeachment of the president. but we have had at least four u.s. officials under oath say that they had knowledge of a deal being offered that made military aid and a meeting with a president con the unjet on opening a investigation that relates to the company joe biden's son served on the board of. are they all lying? >> i can only tell you what i know. and what i know is that the transcript of the president's call with president zelensky shows there was no quid quo pro. he did nothing wrong. >> brennan: but were you aware of that deal that they -- >> i can also say in all of my
interactions with president zelensky, we focused entirely on president zelensky's agenda to bring about reforms to end corruption in ukrainendo bring together the european community to provide greater support for ukraine. president zelensky said there was no pressure. we had a good meeting when the president had to cancel to stay home for a hurricane, and i met president zelensky. the aid was released after that meeting. and -- >> brennan: but did you have knowledge that the deal that these u.s. officials have described under oath? >> what i can tell you is all of my interaction on this issue with the president of the united states and president zelensky focused entirely on three things: number one, the united states of america's support for ukraine following the russian invasion of crimea and the war that russia has been fomenting there. we actually -- this
administration, different from the last one, have provided lethal weapons for ukraine. >> brennan: but these officials -- did you have knowledge of what they're describing or no? >> we stood with them to restore their sovereignty and territorial integrity. number two, president zelensky was elected in an historic landslide on an agenda to end corruption in ukraine. an we very much wanted to understand the progress on that. and thirdly, president trump believed that it was time for the european community to step up. those are the issues we made clear to president zelensky and ukraine, and i think as the facts continue to come out, the american people again will see that in the president's transcript, my interaction, there was no quid quo pro, there was no pressure, it was entirely focused on -- >> i haven't got an clear answer from you on that. i do have to leave the interview from there. but are you saying you did not ever hear of such a deal?
is that what i understand you're describing? >> i'm telling you that all of my interactions with the president, all of my conversations with president zelensky were entirely focused on the issue of importance to the american people, ending corruption and listening to european support, in supporting ukraine in a way that would restore its territorial integrity and stand by ukraine for its sovereignty. >> mr. vice president, thank you very much. i appreciate you joining us. >> thank you, margaret. great day for america. >> we'll be back with -- in one minute with former ambassador to the u.s. susan rice. no two patients are the same. predicting the next step for them can be challenging. today we're using the ibm cloud to run new analytics tools that help us better predict and plan a patient's recovery. ♪ ♪ ultimately, it's helping thousands of patients
return home. and who doesn't love going home. (count) time for one chore [thunder crashing], ah! ahh! my mower! (burke) the number "one." seen it, covered it. at farmers insurance, we know a thing or two because we've seen a thing or two. (bert) mmm. ♪ we are farmers. bum-pa-dum, bum-bum-bum-bum ♪ but one blows them all out of the water. hydro boost with hyaluronic acid to plump skin cells so it bounces back... neutrogena® and for body... hydro boost body gel cream. >> brennan: we are back now with president obama's forkballer national security adviser and u.n. ambassador susan rice. she had planned to join us to tell us about her new book "tough love: my story of the things worth fighting for," but it is such tremendous news this morning. madam ambassador, thank you for
joining us. you weret of the administration at the moment the u.s. first took military action against isis. what is your reaction to the death of al-baghdadi? >> obviously it's a major milestone and it's one we all should be welcoming quite plainly, but it doesn't mean that the fight against isis is over. and it doesn't mean that we can declare mission accomplished and just walk away. what we've seen time and time again in this part of the world is that when the pressure is relieved on terrorist organizations, whether al qaeda or isis, they are able to reconstitute. so we need to be vigilant. we need to maintain a minimal presence in orderensure that the pressure stays on isis and they don't come back roaring. >> brennan: it is pouring rain out there right behind you. >> i was just standing in the pouring rain. >> brennan: well, i appreciate your bravery coming out. we're on the roof of jones day here in washington, bringing you "face the nation."
but back to the issue at hand, do you know, was president obama informed of the death of al-baghdadi by the administration? did you know before the news today? >> no, there's no reason why i should no. there is a tradition of common courtesy of presidents informing their predecessors of things of significance like this. since the white house seemingly didn't feel it necessarily to inform the leadership of the intelligence committees on a bipartisan basis, i'm quite confident they didn't do the normal protocol with respect to predecessors either. >> brennan: during the obama administration when say osama bin laden was taken off the field -- >> as matter of courtesy. >> brennan: as a matter of courtesy. well, you write in your book about the rise of isis, and that in 2014 when they took the city of mosul in iraq, that it took the intelligence community by surprise. it took policy-makers by surprise. it was underestimation of how weak the iraqi government was
and just that isis could use the battlefield thway they did as effectively as they did. are you saying you see the risk now with the drawback in syria, that it appears is still happening, of creating the same kind of vacuum? >> we have learned in afghanistan, in iraq, and now in syria, repeatedly, that you can't take the pressure off and expect these groups not to reconstitute. they may come back with a different name and a different leader, but the ideology remains and the ambition remains. and so, yes, i think it's very concerning that president trump made the decision a couple of weeks ago to withdraw our forces from northern syria, leave the kurds exposed essentially, enable the turks to come in from the north and wipe them out of their traditional homeland and the russians to come up from the south and claim territory that had been denied to them by our presidents and by that of the kurds. i think this is still very dangerous. we have isis that can come back
even with new leadership, and we have over 100 isis prisoners already that have escaped according to the secretary of defense. and this has been a decision that seemingly was taken without consultation by the president with his closest advisers, and it's been hugely beneficial, not only to isis, but also to russia, robb, and, of course, assad, as well as turkey. >> brennan: that's why i was pressing the vice president for the detail on the number of forces left in syria, because it doesn't seem we have that granular decision making. >> and this motion that somehow we're moving handful of forces out of syria to send them home, do the american people understand that since may, president trump has deployed 14,000 additional u.s. forces to saudi arabia and the gulf at a time when he's saying he wants to take the united states out of the middle east. this is not on the level. >> brennan: i want to ask you about something you write about in the book, you know, the
public may remember in the wake of the attacks in benghazi that you were the person put forward by the obama administration to explain what happened. >> on that first sunday. >> brennan: on that first sunday on shows like this one. you say, obviously that had tremendous political blowback for you professionally, but you reveal for the first time some really personal blowback. your daughter had to seek medical help because of what happened. >> i describe in the book how my nine-year-old daughter at the time, after some weeks of this very public and sustained pill loring of me, started having what can only be described as hallucinations. of course her father and i were terrified. she was seeing men coming out of walls at her. we took her to be evaluated. the doctors at children's hospital here in washington were looking a is this psycho kiss, a brain tumor, skits friend, yeah a vision problem. thankfully, after several weeks they were able to rule all of that and determine it was a
stress reaction the hearing through the television what i was enduring. i want people to understand that these things have real consequences for those who don't sign up for this. >> brennan: those personal details in your book that we mentioned, we have to leave it there and we'll be right back. grow with google is here to help you with turning ideas into action. putting your business on the map, connecting with customers, and getting the skills to use new tools. so, in case you're looking, we've put all the ways we can help in one place. free training, tools, and small business resources are now available at google.com/grow thisdoin' more...bout... ...with less. doers need energy. and demand for it is expected to grow. so chevron's finding more homegrown energy, more precisely. digitizing the way we work with advanced data analytics helping us develop more productive wells. and we're exploring ways to use renewable energy in our operations.
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this is kpix 5 breaking news. this is a breaking news update from kpix 5. the kinkaid fire is tearing through sonoma county. evacuations are expanded overnight. parts of northern santa rosa are under mandatory evacuation orders and officials announced new mandatory evacuations. people in hillsboro, windsor, creighton, and bodega bay were told to get out last night. cal fire will have an update in one hour with the very latest numbers on the fires growth and the