tv CBS Overnight News CBS January 31, 2017 3:10am-4:01am EST
those people who have helped the u.s. in the banned countries. they include the top iraqi general that charlie d'agata met today. >> reporter: "i'm a four-star general," he said, "and i'm banned from entering the u.s.?" general talib al kenani commands all iraqi forces, including the american-trained counterterrorism troops that have been leading the fight against isis for two and a half years. his family was relocated to the u.s. for their safety, and he had plans to see them this week, until he was told not to bother. you were hoping to visit america where you have a home. you're smiling. what happened? "i have been fighting terrorism
for 13 years and winning," he told us. "now my kids are asking me if i'm a terrorist." we met the general at his heavily fortified compound inside the green zone. >> safety, very important. >> you have safety for your family in america? >> yes. yes. >> reporter: for the past decade, kenani has been traveling to u.s. central command in tampa for high-level meetings with u.s. military leadership. "there are many american troops here in iraq," he said, "after this ban, how are we supposed to deal with each other?" the ban comes just as iraqi and u.s. forces are on the verge of victory in mosul. just when president donald trump has asked his military commanders to accelerate the war against militants. "this ban needs to be reviewed," the general said. "we thought we were partners with our american friends. now we realize we're just considered terrorists." the general told us he may try to travel later this week,
scott, but he still doesn't have any guarantee he won't be turned around. he said the ban came as a shock. no one in his circles had any idea it was coming. >> charlie d'agata in baghdad. today the white house said that most americans agree with the immigration ban and a respected poll from quinnipiac university agrees. it was taken three weeks ago, and by a margin of 48% to 42%, american voters support suspending immigration from terror-prone regions, even if it means turning away refugees. 53% support requiring immigrants from muslim countries to register with the government. here's dean reynolds. >> reporter: trump supporters were on hand at los angeles international airport this weekend voicing their belief that the president's immigration order is sensible and overdue. >> keeping our country safe and lawful. >> reporter: vito glazers is a chicago internet entrepreneur
who voted for the president. what do you think of this executive order on immigration? >> well, i don't think it's perfect. i do think it's a great step to creating much-needed action in the right direction. >> reporter: mr. trump's stand on immigration was important in winning glazers' support, and while he's only one voice, polls say his views are representative of many fellow trump supporters. >> i don't want america to end up in a place where political correctness is being used against us to destroy us. >> reporter: do you think politics is at work here? >> absolutely. i think if we were in the middle of a zombie apocalypse the left would find a way to protest for zombies' rights. >> reporter: he also said something else that probably a lot of trump supporters agree with, scott, that it is ironic that so many people are upset with the president who is merely following through on promises he made during the campaign. >> dean reynolds in chicago, thanks. some of the largest tech companies have come out against the president's immigration ban.
late today a large crowd of protesters gathered outside google headquarters in mountainview, california. google says that it's donating cash to organizations that support immigrants. white house spokesman sean spicer said the terror attack on a mosque last night in quebec city proves the president's point, except this was an attack on muslims. six are dead, 17 injured, and anna werner is there. anna? >> reporter: scott, what you see behind me are the hundreds of people who have come tonight for a vigil to remember the victims of that attack at the islamic cultural center here. it happened before 8:00 at night. police say a man walked into this mosque where they were holding evening prayers and began shooting. by the time he finished, six people were dead, many more injured. a short time after that, police say they got a phone call from the suspect. they picked him up. they have now charged a
27-year-old student from laval university here, alexander bissonette, with six counts of murder in connection with the attack here at the mosque. what we know about bissonette so far is sketchy. u.s. authorities, two sources tell cbs news he is not known to u.s. authorities, and police here have not speculated as to what the motive might be for this attack. but we can tell you that some local news reports tonight are saying that they believe bissonette subscribed to a right-wing ideology. but people here are shocked. something like this has never happened to them before. and in newspapers tonight, they're calling it "the horror at home." scott? >> anna werner in quebec city tonight. anna, thank you. over the weekend, a raid by a navy s.e.a.l. team on an al qaeda headquarters in yemen turned into a gun battle. today the pentagon said that the one commando who was killed is
36-year-old william ryan owens of illinois. three other s.e.a.l. team members were wounded. a v-22 osprey evacuating the wounded had to make a hard landing and injured at least one more. the osprey had to be destroyed in place. the pentagon says 14 al qaeda fighters died. coming up, the president gives his top political strategist a role on the security council. and later, families separated by the travel ban.
the white house now says that bannon will sit on the national security council, a place usually insulated from politics. we asked chip reid to tell us more about mr. trump's in-house political philosopher. >> reporter: even before gaining a seat on the nsc, steve bannon was one of the most powerful people in the white house. it's a breathtaking rise for someone whose job before joining the trump campaign was ceo of breitbart news, an ultra conservative and highly controversial website. jonathan greenblatt is ceo of the anti-defamation league. >> he positioned the web site as "the platform for the alt right" as a host for misogynist, racist, islamophobic propaganda. >> reporter: during the campaign mr. trump appeared with bannon on breitbart radio. >> i do like breitbart. and breitbart is legit, 100% legit. >> reporter: breitbart became popular with white nationalists, but the white house denies
bannon is promoting that ideology now. bannon served in the navy, attended harvard business school and worked in investment banking, but he became a harsh critic of what he described as the wall street crisis in 2010. >> unlike the manufactured crises of global warming and health care, this is a true crisis. >> reporter: he has little experience in foreign policy. ari fleisher, press secretary to president george w. bush, says bush's political director was banned from nsc meetings, even so, fleisher supports trump's promotion of bannon. >> president bush was much more of a traditionalist, much more cut from the establishment. this is the way it's always been done. donald trump is different. and i think he's earned the right to be different. >> reporter: the white house today noted that president obama's top political adviser, david axelrod, sometimes attended nsc meetings, but, scott, axelrod said he only listened and unlike bannon, he did not have a role in making national security policy. >> chip reid in the washington newsroom.
president trump said today he has decided on a nominee to fill the vacancy on the supreme court. he described the person as "highly respected." chief legal correspondent jan crawford tells us that the front-runner is colorado-based federal appeals court judge neil gorsuch, another contender, judge thomas hardiman of pennsylvania. cbs news will bring you live coverage of the president's supreme court announcement. that is tomorrow night at 8:00 eastern time. former president george h.w. bush was released from the hospital today. he was in more than two weeks with pneumonia. mr. bush, who is 92, hopes to go to the super bowl in houston. and we'll be right back.
this evening acting attorney general sally yates said she will not defend the immigration ban in court. yates, a holdover from the obama administration, is running the justice department until mr. trump's nominee, jeff sessions, is confirmed. meanwhile, an army of lawyers fighting the ban descended on the dallas-fort worth airport to help foreign travelers.
and david begnaud met some of the families. >> reporter: tired but relieved, najah alsamieh, a 51-year-old syrian who is a permanent u.s. resident with a green card, was detained at dallas-fort worth international airport for more than three hours saturday. she was reunited with her daughter, mariam yasin. what the white house has continued to say is people like your mom need to be double checked to make sure they're not coming here to do harm. >> yes. why? she's been here. did she do harm to anyone? she's a resident. she lives here in tulsa, oklahoma. she doesn't need to be checked. >> reporter: her mother arrived from egypt where she had been visiting her 12 and 14-year-old daughters. >> it's sad. we're not happy at all. we're scared for the other one, my sisters and anyone that want to come here. we're trying to find safety. >> open those doors! open those doors!
>> reporter: u.s. immigration officials in dallas detained 11 people this weekend, some for up to 24 hours, including osama alolabi's parents. he's a student at southern methodist university and he joined protesters at the airport. he said his parents already had their visas. he was waiting in line. when they saw they were syrian, someone came and they took them to a private room. there were people from all nationalities over there. then a person comes and lectures how if you're from these seven countries, you have to go back. >> reporter: yasin and her mother are still upset about their experience. >> my mother and all the ones like my mother are expecting an apology, a big one. >> reporter: if the president were watching this, i'd wonder what you want to tell him. >> i just want him to have a heart. >> reporter: david begnaud, cbs news, dallas. and that's the "overnight news" for this tuesday. for some of you, the news continues. for others, check back with us a little bit later for the morning news and be sure not to miss "cbs this morning." from the broadcast center in new york city, i'm scott pelley. -- captions by vitac -- www.vitac.com
this is the "cbs overnight news." >> welcome to the "overnight news." i'm jim axelrod. the white house is defending president trump's executive order banning immigrants from seven muslim majority nations. white house press secretary sean spicer insists the travel ban merely inconvenienced a small number of people over the weekend. but thousands hoping to get to the u.s. are currently stranded at airports around the world. major garrett has more. >> any comment on the protests, mr. president? >> reporter: backlash to president trump's order banning visitors from seven countries was swift. white house chief strategist steve bannon and senior policy adviser steven miller helped craft the policy. >> if nobody is disagreeing with what you're doing, then you're probably not doing anything that really matters in the scheme of things.
>> reporter: the white house said the order was not issued because of any specific threat. it was, however, rushed through the usual protocol. key congressional committees were kept in the dark, homeland security secretary john kelly charged with implementing the order, learned the details as president trump was signing it. kelly was aboard a coast guard plane at the time. white house press secretary sean spicer. >> everybody was kept in the loop at the level necessary to make sure that we rolled it out properly. we were not going to wait until we get attacked to figure out how it doesn't happen again. >> reporter: at first the department of homeland security said the order also applied to green card holders returning to the u.s., but chief of staff reince priebus reversed that yesterday. >> the executive order itself is not placing further burdens on people that hold green cards. >> reporter: the white house said a pause in immigration and refugee policy is consistent with mr. trump's campaign promises. >> donald j. trump is calling for a total and complete
shutdown of muslims entering the united states until our country's representatives can figure out what the hell is going on. >> reporter: then indiana governor and now vice president mike pence tweeted at the time, "calls to ban muslims from entering the u.s. are offensive and unconstitutional." today at the state department, career diplomats circulated a so-called dissent cable, that's a decades-old process of airing policy grievances with political appointees. >> i think they should either get with the program or they can go. >> reporter: and for the first time, former president obama weighed in on a trump white house move, saying through his spokesman, "he fundamentally disagrees with the notion of discriminating against individuals because of their faith or religion." president trump said his order temporarily blocking immigration and refugee resettlement was not a muslim ban, though its effects will hit muslims most directly. some of the political fallout of the travel ban is landing on capitol hill. a growing number of republicans
are criticizing the order. nancy cordes has that. >> reporter: democrats may have been the loudest, but many republicans, like pennsylvania's charlie dent, were just as critical. >> it was not well thought out. it was not properly considered. >> reporter: senators john mccain and lindsey graham warned it will help terrorist recruitment because it sends a signal that americans do not want muslims coming into the country. president trump did not take kindly to the criticism, accusing mccain and graham of "always looking to start world war iii" and mocking democratic leader chuck schumer. >> this executive order -- [ crying ] -- was mean-spirited. >> reporter: who got emotional over the weekend. >> i noticed chuck schumer yesterday with fake tears. i'm going to ask him who was his acting coach. >> that doesn't even deserve a dignified response.
>> reporter: schumer tried to capitalize on gop discontent by introducing a bill to reverse the travel ban. >> i object. >> reporter: but it was quickly blocked by republicans who support the executive order, like tom cotton of arkansas. >> this is not a muslim ban. this is a temporary pause of movement from seven countries. >> reporter: if you can't overturn it with legislation, is there anything else that democrats can do? >> yes. in the longer run i truly believe this is unconstitutional, and i think it will eventually be overturned by the courts. the american civil liberties union says it doesn't know how many people are being detained in airports around the country. they're demanding list from the department of homeland security, but so far they have not gotten a response. jericka duncan has that story. >> reporter: we spoke to lawyers moments ago who have been working on behalf of the detainees here at jfk. now, that group of detainees reportedly across the country includes a doctor bound for
harvard university, graduate students, and several children. >> let them out! let them out! >> reporter: huge nationwide protests erupted once again on president donald trump's second weekend in office. what started out saturday as a spontaneous demonstration at jfk had spread to airports from coast to coast sunday. some of the first people ensnared were two iraqis who had reportedly received asylum for assisting the u.s. military during the iraq war. one of the men was released from jfk after members of congress intervened. his mother, a green card holder from syria, was detained in dallas. >> they're tired, they're on the floor and they're treating them really bad. >> reporter: and a 5-year-old iranian boy was held at dulles
for more than four hours before finally being reunited with his mother. immigration lawyers said mr. trump's executive order had thrown airports into disarray. steve golden is one of the attorneys who volunteered his services. >> there's very little to no warning of when folks are going to get released. so it's making it very confusing and very difficult. >> reporter: as the protests mounted, federal judges in four states temporarily blocked immigration officials from expelling travelers who had permission to be in the country. but president trump's ban on refugees remains in effect as officials review the screening process. the obama administration had approved about 80% of refugee applications. >> when you get a green card, when you get a visa, this is not a five-minute thing. this is not a very quick, fill out a form and check a box. there is an extreme vetting process. the white house has said that most americans agree with the immigration ban.
dean reynolds has found some evidence to back that up. >> reporter: trump supporter were on hand at los angeles international airport this weekend, voicing their belief that the president's immigration order is sensible and overdo. >> keeping our country safe and lawful. >> reporter: vito glazers is a chicago internet entrepreneur who voted for the president. what do you think of this executive order on immigration? >> well, i don't think it's perfect. i do think it's a great step to creating much-needed action in the right direction. >> reporter: mr. trump's stand on immigration was important in winning glazers' support, and while he's only one voice, polls say his views are representative of many fellow trump supporters. >> i don't want america to end up in a place where political correctness is being used against us to destroy us. >> reporter: do you think politics is at work here? >> absolutely. i think if we were in the middle of a zombie apocalypse the left would find a way to protest for zombies' rights. the "cbs overnight news"
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president trump's ban on travel from seven muslim majority nations has sparked both outrage and protests here at home and abroad. the executive order takes particular aim at refugees from syria who are barred from entering the united states indefinitely. even before the president coined the phrase extreme vetting, syrian refugees faced an almost impossible task getting to the united states. bill whittaker has their story for "60 minutes." >> reporter: this is a syrian refugee camp in jordan, about seven miles from the syrian border. 80,000 syrian refugees living in tiny steel boxes as far as the eye can see. the camp, run by the u.n., sprang out of the jordanian desert in 2012 as millions of refugees poured out of syria. it's now the largest syrian refugee camp in the middle east.
>> every refugee here lives in a prefab housing. >> reporter: gina oversees the refugee resettlement program in the middle east and north africa for the u.s. state department. as of late 2016, the u.s. was processing an additional 21,000 syrian refugee applications for relocation to the united states. >> mostly we focus on victims of torture, survivors of violence, women headed households, a lot of severe medical cases. >> reporter: she told us each syrian refugee who makes it to the united states goes through a lengthy process of interviews and background checks. you know there are many americans that don't trust government to fix the roads or run schools. how can you convince them that this process is going to keep them safe? >> because they undergo so many steps of vetting, so many interviews, so many intelligence screenings, so many checks along the way.
they're fleeing the terrorists who killed their family members who destroyed their houses. these are the victims that we are helping through our program. >> reporter: the war in syria has taken the lives of almost 500,000 people. leveled entire cities and created the largest refugee crisis since the end of world war ii. syria's neighbor jordan has been overwhelmed with nearly 1.5 million refugees. in the camps and in the cities. any who can make their way here to the capital. for the lucky few, this is where the long road to the u.s. begins. every day, thousands of syrian refugees line up here in amman, jordan to register with the u.n. every single refugee is interviewed in detail, multiple times by the u.n. for their vital statistics, where they came from, who they know. their irises are scanned to establish their identity. and then they wait for the chance the u.n. might refer them to the united states.
less than 1% have had that chance. for that 1%, the next step has been the state department resettlement center in amman for a back ground check led by especially trained department of homeland security interrogators. like all syrian refugees being vetted, this family was questioned at least three times by interviewers looking for gaps or inconsistencies in their stories. all that information is then run through u.s. security databases for any red flags. to be a refugee in jordan is to be patient. the u.s. security check goes on an average of 18 to 24 months. those who pass are told to pack up for their new life in the united states. this family had just been told they're moving to chicago, illinois. >> what are you feeling right now? >> i'm happy. but we don't know anything. >> reporter: just before they go, they're given a crash course on life in the u.s.
america 101. >> english, education, experience. >> reporter: most know little about where they're moving. those we spoke to didn't really care. they know exactly what they're leaving behind. we met suloff and her 15-year-old daughter judy in amman this past august. now you're going the united states. do you know where? >> north carolina. >> what do you know about north carolina? >> i don't know. i don't know. nice city. >> reporter: she was an elementary schoolteacher back in hom, syria. her husband, a dentist. she says they had a good life until syrian president assad's forces turned their lives into a living hell. she says they would hear the sound of other buildings collapsing, and they would tell themselves, we're next. she started giving her kids sleeping pills so they could sleep.
her daughter judy was 10 years old at the time. >> you remember all this? >> yes, i remember everything like it's happened yesterday. it was very scary. we cannot go to the school, and most of my friends dead. >> most of your friends are dead? >> yes. >> reporter: she says she's lucky she made it alive to jordan with her children and parents. she has one sister in bombed out aleppo. another in isis controlled territory. but jordan is where her husband ahmed's luck went out. he was found to have lou gehrig's disease and died in 2014. her youngest son was diagnosed with autism, but the family couldn't find treatment. this past august, she was cleared by homeland security to travel to the u.s. it was just in time. she was considering taking her family on the treacherous journey to europe by boat in order to get her son the help he needs. she told us, if she tried to
cross the ocean to europe and they made it, they made it. if they died, they died. there's no difference between death and life in this place, she says. she can't work. she can't educate her children. she has no opportunity. >> so a new life in america is your only hope? >> yeah, yeah. exactly. >> reporter: we met this man and his wife in their apartment in jordan this past august as they were preparing to leave for the u.s. he owned a clothing store in syria before the war. he says he was arrested and tortured, accused of being a foreign spy by assad's forces, just for watching a protest outside his store. >> you said the men who arrested you said no one will know what happened to you. "you believe that the best possible option is that you die quickly," he said. >> you felt it might be better if you were to die?
"death is mercy at this point." >> reporter: he was released, the family fled syria. after a nearly two-year vetting process, they were cleared by u.s. homeland security. in september, they moved into this empty apartment in riverdale, maryland. they say it's lonely. but he has figured out the local bus. and just got a part-time job at the local 7-eleven. opening our doors to refugees like ekbal is a proud part of america's heritage, but just over a year ago when paris was attacked by isis fighters, killing 130 civilians, many americans wanted to slam the doors shut. a syrian passport was found on one of the suicide bombers, who had entered europe with the flood of syrian refugees. that prompted 31 u.s. governors to call for a complete halt to the syrian refugee program.
georgia's republican governor nathan deal signed an executive order denying state services to syrian refugees. it turned out that bomber wasn't syrian after all. he was part of a sophisticated isis plot to get radicals into europe. but it cast a shadow of suspicion over all syrian refugees. muhammad, his wife, and son hasan were among the first syrian refugees to arrive in the u.s. they settled in georgia just weeks after the attacks in paris. "at first i was worried, but i told myself there's no way i would be mistreated in this country, because this is a country of laws." muhammad and his family were sponsored by the johnson ferry baptist church in deep republican marietta, georgia, just outside atlanta. >> romans 13 is very clear. >> reporter: with governor deal banning services, the church stepped in to support the family. pastor brian wright, a former president of the southern
baptist convention -- >> the concern is obviously over illegal immigrants. >> reporter: -- found himself in a political firestorm. at odds with the governor, a man he voted for. >> our calling is far higher to follow christ and do what christ teaches us to do, than whether there's an rrd behind your name. that's what we have to live by far more than what people are hearing on talkradio or from political candidates. >> you can see the full report on our website, cbsnews.com. the "overnight news" will be right back. e charts... sir! what's the status? there's a meteor hurtling towards earth. how long until impact? less than a minute. what do you want to do, sir? listen carefully... if we all switch to geico we could save 15% or more on car insurance. i like the sound of that. geico.
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...lysol that. the leaders of some of america's biggest high tech companies are joining the chorus of criticism over president trump's travel ban. microsoft, tesla, and google, just to name three, are all run by immigrants. john blackstone has more on the backlash. >> reporter: while others in the tech industry who have joined the chorus include apple, facebook, and air b&b, one calls the restrictions fundamentally wrong from a moral standpoint. but some wonder if the tech industry is overreacting to a limited concern. >> let them out! let them out! >> reporter: immigration policy protests continued in the bay area over the weekend and included the google co-founder serge brin who was born in russia. he told a reporter he was there
because he's a refugee. >> i think it's a fantastic message. not only is he an american, he's also an immigrant. >> reporter: the co-founder of pay pal is worried what it might mean for recruiting future talent. >> most people are frustrated, scared, angry. if america loses the status, the ability to attract the very best talent, we stand to lose a lot more than we stand to game. >> reporter: his sentiments were echoed across the high tech industry. uber's ceo says it's unjust. and in an e-mail to employees obtained by cbs news, apple's ceo tim cook says it's not a policy we support. other companies are taking action. google is creating a multimillion dollar crisis fund for four immigration rights organizations. lift is donating $1 million to the aclu.
and air b&b is offering free housing for anyone impacted by the president's order. >> the reason it's so troubling is because it has hallmark of being a first step, first steps towards something greater. >> reporter: as it stands now, the order's impact on silicone valley might be limited. in 2013, nearly 274,000 skilled workers visas were issued in the u.s. but a university analysis found less than one half of 1% of them were issued to citizens from the seven banned countries. but still, some companies are concerned about the ripple effect. >> these companies do business in a global economy, and they get concerned not only about their access to talent, but about being able to go to other countries and be able to do business there. >> reporter: on sunday, the trump administration clarified that people from the seven countries listed in the executive order who have green cards or visas allowing them to work in the united states are
the anger and mistrust that covered the presidential campaign has not died down since the trump administration is up and running. but away from the podiums and protests, there are still signs that americans can come together and politely agree to disagree. chip reid found one such story at a cafe in washington. >> reporter: she says she was feeling energized after attending the women's march on washington. she was waiting tables at d.c.'s busboys and poets when jason white and two friends walked in. >> this is a very liberal, eclectic kind of place. so they stuck out a little bit? >> yeah, they did. >> reporter: she assumed they were in town to attend the inauguration. and she was right. >> he said we're from west texas. we don't have this kind of place where we can get this food or this kind of atmosphere.
>> reporter: they talked throughout the meal. >> it made me happy that he felt he could be honest. like look, i'm not from here. >> reporter: after he left, she picked up the receipt and was surprised to see a note, which she read for us. >> we may come from different cultures and disagree on certain issues, but if everyone would share their smile and kindness like your beautiful smile, our country would come together as one people, not race, not gender, just american. god bless. then i looked to this left, and there's this crazy number for $450. >> reporter: a $450 tip. >> i was shocked. i definitely messed up on the order directly after. >> reporter: we tracked down jason, a texas dentist, and connected to him to roslyn on facetime. >> fancy meeting you here. >> oh, my god. it's so good to see you. >> i do have a question, why $450? >> so, i mean, because i'm a trump supporter, and he's the
45th president, it's not about a white trump supporter giving a generous tip to a black waitress. it's about an american being generous to another american. >> reporter: at the end of the call, there was a virtual hug. >> yeah, a big hug. i'll give you a kiss. >> reporter: and there were tears. >> i'm going to start crying. >> to me, it's about the connection that can still be made past the divisive part of like the political process. like republican/democrat, like no, you're human first. >> reporter: a lesson in these times she says for all of us. chip reid, cbs news, washington. >> and that is the "overnight news" for this tuesday. for some of you, the news continues. for others, check back with us a little later for the morning news and of course, "cbs this morning." from the broadcast center in new york, i'm jim axelrod. -- captions by vitac -- www.vitac.com
♪ it's tuesday, january 31st, 2017. this is the "cbs morning news." fallout over president trump's travel ban continues. in a series of late-night moves, the president fired the acting attorney general who refused to defend his executive order and appointed a replacement to carry out his controversial plan. in grief. as thousands turn out to mourn the six men gunned down in evening prayers at a mosque. this morning, investigators are learning more about the suspected killer considered a