tv Way Too Early MSNBC November 17, 2015 2:30am-3:01am PST
from paris. and we will have the latest from here in france in just a moment. but first there's breaking news on the crash of that russian passenger jet in egypt. officials in moscow now say it was definitely a terrorist attack, after finding traces of explosives in the plane debris. for more, let's bring in nbc's ron mott from london. ron, what else are you hearing? >> hi, chris, good morning. it was a bomb. that's what russian president vladimir putin told -- was told today rather that brought down that passenger plane over egypt's sinai peninsula killing all 224 people aboard. also nbc news has learned that egyptian authorities have detained and are questioning two employees who work at the airport in sharm el sheikh where the plane took off before vanishing from radar and crashing. president putin promised to go after those responsible and said, quote, we will search for them everywhere, wherever they are hiding, we will find them in any spot on the planet and punish them. russia is offering a $50 million reward and putin said he would increase airstrikes on targets in syria. the chief of russian's fsb
security service said traces of explosives were found in the wreckage hating a homemade bomb was smuggled onto that metrojet flight, with the explosive charge of about two pounds of tnt and he said that's why the plane broke apart in the air. in written statements isis claimed responsibility and said the act was retaliation for russian airstrikes against isis and others and today's announcement out of moscow is the first official acknowledgment that terrorism was the culprit. though it had been widely speculated that it was something sinister, not mechanical or pilot error that doomed that flight, chris. >> yeah, and obviously the isis connection, or reason that they're watching all of that very closely right here, nbc's ron mott in london for us, thank you. now back here in france, there is a lot going on. secretary of state john kerry met with french president francois hollande this morning, hours after the french leader declared that friday's act of war was planned in syria, organized in belgium, and carried out in paris by at least four french citizens. we are learning more about the attack and those behind it.
france identified the linchpin in the attack, his name abdel hamid abaaoud. he once boasted about killing infidels. a senior u.s. counterterrorism official tells nbc news that abaaoud was in charge of keeping track of the attackers, manufacturing the suicide vests and choosing the targets. the official says the vests were all manufactured in the same style apparently by the same person. prosecutors have identified five of the seven dead assailants. four are frenchmen, one was born in syria and fingerprinted in greece last month. with a passport discovered near his body. meanwhile, officials in turkey say they told france about one of the attackers twice in december 2014 and then again in june 2015. attacker omar mostefai entered turkey in 2013, may have traveled to syria. turkish authorities say they never heard back from their french counterparts. one man linked to the attacks is
still on the run, salah abdeslam, a frenchman born in belgium. he was briefly detained at a road check hours after the attack. his brother mohammed spoke out yesterday after belgian police cleared him of any involvement saying that his family learned about the attacks on tv and that they're still in shock. authorities believe salah abdeslam rented a car used by the attackers, found outside the bataclan concert hall, which ended in 89 deaths, and many more wounded until ending in this police raid, seen here in this exclusive video. joining me now in paris, nbc news correspondent kelly cobiella who has been here throughout. and kelly, you're learning more about who is being called the mastermind behind these attacks. >> there are a lot of reports, chris, about this man abaaoud. about his life in belgium before these attacks and before he joined isis in syria. he is reportedly an associate after abdeslam, the man who is still wanted by police. called an isis executioner. there are reports that he was
behind that train attack, the foiled attack in august. also other reports that his last known location was syria. in an isis publication, he brags about sneaking back in to belgium in january of this year to help plan attacks in europe. and then sneaking back out again after the "charlie hebdo" shootings, and a raid in verviers, belgium, which left two suspected militants dead. on to the developments here in france, there were more raids last night. 128 raids, according to the interior minister and prime minister. but many of them focusing on toulouse. toulouse, chris, you may recall, is an area which has had attacks in the past, in 2012, this is where the man mohammed mara went on a spree killing french soldiers and also attacking a jewish school. so this has been a hotbed in the past for islamic extremists.
so more raids in toulouse overnight. weapons seized. and potential arrests. there were also two arrests in belgium overnight, and because of security concerns there that friendly match between belgium and spain has been canceled for tonight. they're fairly concerned about the security situation there. >> kelly cobiella, thank you so much for being here. so officials are on edge, amid new promises of violence from isis. the islamic state warned in a video that any country hitting it would suffer the same fate as terrorists promising specifically to target washington, d.c. this as cia director john brennan warned that islamic state militants may have similar operations ready to launch, but foiling those plots could prove difficult because europe's security resources are severely stretched. and for the first time, he spoke of a, quote, external agenda. >> i certainly would not consider it a one-off event. it is clear to me that isil has an external agenda that they are
determined to carry out these types of attacks. this is not something that was done in a matter of days. this is something that was deliberately and carefully planned over the course, i think, of several months. in terms of making sure that they had the operatives, the weapons, the explosives with the suicide belts. and so i would anticipate that this is not the only operation that isil has in the pipeline. i do believe that this is something that we're going to have to deal with for quite some time. it's not just europe. i think we here in the united states also have to be obviously quite vigilant. >> a senior counterterrorism official tells nbc news there is no specific threat. officials tell nbc that french warplanes and other coalition aircraft have launched new strikes in raqqah and according to "the new york times." the u.s. took out 116 oil trucks in eastern syria. it's reportedly the first time
the u.s. has gone after the vehicles, the islamic state uses to smuggle lucrative crude oil. the plans for the raid predate the terror attacks and target a source of income that brings in tens of millions of dollars each month for isis. also yesterday, the "uss truman" deported from norfolk, virginia, one of ten super carriers in service, it will be used in support of coalition attacks on isis. and declaring france is at war, french president francois hollande issued a call to arms during a rare joint session of parliament at versailles yesterday, vowing to forge a coalition capable of defeating jihadists at home and abroad. >> >> translator: transis that war. the acts committed last friday in paris and near the national stadium are acts of war. they constitute an aggression against our country, against our values, our youth, against our lifestyle.
the worlds who have attacked, hitting innocent people, are cowards who shoot unarmed people, so we are -- this is not a war of civilizations, because those killers do not represent a civilization. we are at war against jihadist terrorists who threaten the whole world. and not only france. these killers used the worst means to try to kill. but i will be very precise. that we can still win over them. >> the french president calls on lawmakers to act quickly to approve sweeping changes to the country's constitution, and spending more on defense in order to better fight what he calls this new kind of adversary. hollande also said french forces would intensify their assault in syria and that he would meet with president obama and russian president vladimir putin in the coming days to urge them to pool their resources to combat isis
reports now that that meeting will take place next week. now, president obama arrived in the philippines yesterday for an asia-pacific summit after addressing the g-20 about the u.s. strategy against isis. during his news conference in turkey, the president said the u.s. will intensify the strategy it's already put forward, but that sending in u.s. ground troops to fight isis would be a mistake. >> in the aftermath of paris as i listen to those who suggest something else needs to be done, typically the things they suggest need to be done are things we are already doing. the one exception is that there had been a few who suggested that we should put large numbers of u.s. troops on the ground. and it is not just my view but the view of my closest military and civilian advisers that that would be a mistake. and let's assume that we were to
send 50,000 troops into syria. what happens when there's a terrorist attack generated from yemen? do we then send more troops into there or libya, perhaps? or if there's a terrorist network that's operating anywhere else in north africa, or in southeast asia. folks want to pop off and have opinions about what they think they would do, present a specific plan. but what i'm not interested in doing is posing or pursuing some notion of american leadership or america winning or whatever other slogans are -- they come up with that has no relationship to what is actually going to work to protect the american people, and to protect people in
the region who are getting killed and to protect our allies and people like france. i'm too busy for that. president obama yesterday at a sometimes testy news conference. mean time back in the u.s., senator dianne feinstein, who's the top democrat on the senate intelligence committee, contradicted president obama yesterday, disagreeing with the assessment he made last week that isis is contained. here's what she said on msnbc's andrea mitchell reports. >> i've never been more concerned. i read the intelligence faithfully. isil is not contained. isil is expanding. they've just put out a video saying it is their intent to attack this country. and i think we have to be prepared. there's only one way we're going to diminish them, and that is by taking them out. because they are growing. they are in more than a dozen countries now.
they are sophisticated. they have apps to communicate on that cannot be pierced, even with a court order. so they have a kind of secret way of being able to conduct operations and operational planning. so we should take this very, very seriously. >> mean time, a growing number of governors from across the country are voicing concern about resettling syrian refugees in the u.s. right now, at least 26 governors say they're opposed to the idea of syrian refugees entering their states, or have directly told the federal government, not in my state. during a news conference yesterday, texas governor greg abbott said he would not, quote, roll the dice and take the risk on allowing a few refugees in. and south carolina's governor nikki haley wrote a letter to secretary of state john kerry saying, quote, i have concerns with the vetting process of refugees from conflict zones, specifically syria.
new jersey governor chris christie has reportedly done an about-face on accepting syrian refugees, as recently as september he said that he would sit down with our allies and figure out a way to help. but during an interview yesterday governor christie said, quote, we need appropriate vetting, and i don't think orphans under 5 should be admitted into the united states at this point. while speaking in alabama yesterday, former secretary of state condoleezza rice says she understands the concern over security risks. >> i do hope that we can remain open and welcoming but i fundamentally understand that if you're in a position of authority, like you are or the governor or others, you have to, as a part of your compassion, also be safety conscious for your people. >> and last night donald trump held a rally in knoxville, where he addressed a boisterous crowd, nearly 10,000 people. the republican front-runner spoke at length about friday's terror attacks. and at one point, seemed to link the tragedy to france's tough
gun control laws. he also went after president obama for his unwillingness to use the phrase radical islam and repeated a somewhat profane line about how he intends to handle the isis threat. >> i just left a certain little thing where i was watching our president talking. boy. he does not get it. he doesn't get it. and you know, you hear the term radical islamic terrorism. he won't say it. he won't say it. and you can't solve a problem if you refuse to talk about what the problem is. and he won't talk about it. he's -- i don't know what's going on with this man. i don't know what's going on. france. you have the horrible attack.
and, by the way, paris is one of the places in the world that's toughest on guns. if 20 of those people -- you don't need more, but could have been more, could have been all of them. but if 20 of those people that were shot viciously and if you heard the stories, come on over, boom, come on over, boom. come here, boom. one after another after another, hundreds of people. plenty are dying and will be dead. now, if you had 25 people in there that had guns, okay, it would have been a totally different story, folks. there would have been the shoot-out at the o.k. corral, right? you know, it used to be we would have a military. you'd have uniforms here, uniforms there. the one with the most uniforms standing wins the war, right? it's a little different now. now you're talking about sneaky, dirty, underhanded people that want to kill our civilians, they want to go after our civilians,
they want to kill not only our civilians, all over the world. and it's going to be stopped. it's going to be stopped. somebody criticized me the other day because they asked me what i do. and i said i'm going to bomb the [ bleep ] out of them. it's true. i don't care. i don't care. they've got to be stopped. >> we have much more ahead live from paris on "way too early." perhaps you can see behind me, the crowds that continue to gather at the place de la republique as the memorial to the victims of friday night's massacre continues to grow. in the last hour i took a ten-minute walk to another memorial by the bataclan. but in between, you see all the signs that things are returning to normal in paris, as normal as they can be. people coming and going to work on the streets, and the eiffel tower, overnight, shining once again. this special edition of "way too early" will continue in just a moment.
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amid the morning in paris, life slowly returns to normal. three days after a string of terrorist attacks shook the capital city, many businesses have reopened, and the iconic eiffel tower did so, as well, yesterday. days after staying dark, it was lit up in the blue, blanc and rouge of the french national flag. later in the day it was secretary of state john kerry who flipped the switch to illuminate the u.s. embassy in paris in the colors of the french republic in a show of solidarity. meanwhile at the bataclan where 89 music fans were killed in friday's attacks, the barricades have mostly been lifted and a banner above the entrance now reads, freedom is an indestructible monument. let's get a check on your weather now with nbc meteorologist bill karins. good morning, bill. >> good morning to you, chris.
dangerous weather overnight. a lot of people did not get a good night's sleep through kansas, oklahoma, and in texas. because these storms were rolling through some big cities overnight. the storm systems also producing blizzard conditions in denver. one severe thunderstorm watch in eastern oklahoma. we had 41 tornadoes reported yesterday. this is november. very unheard of. and some of those were huge. some of those were wedge tornadoes. and you can see some of the edges of them, it was right as the sun was setting. that's why we didn't get a lot of great video of them. november tornadoes are dangerous. we're very fortunate we didn't have any fatalities or injuries last night. so the worst of the storms just rolled through the dallas area. severe thunderstorms now apply are going from dallas to terrell, also near plano. fort worth still has some heavier rains but starting to clear out a little bit. here's the radar from tulsa to mcallister watching those storms, too. still expecting up to 6 to 12 inches of snow to the east of the denver area so looks like the snow in denver is beginning to end. and the worst of it this afternoon, alexandria to little rock, watch out, chris, we could have additional tornadoes this
afternoon, kind of a rare two-day tornado outbreak is possible here in the lower 48. >> bill karins, thank you so much. and i must say, unseasonably warm here. much warmer than it was over the weekend, according to our nbc folks who are here. so, we're grateful for that for sure. still ahead, stephen colbert goes all-out to pay tribute to the victims here in paris. the historic ed sullivan theater like you've never seen it before. that's next on "way too early." (wind noise) the indomitable nature of the human spirit. that's what's happening here. because there's something out there something better and bigger than here and with 80 thousand people to help you realize your wildest dreams... we'll get you there. because there is no stop in us. or you. only go.
♪ last night stephen colbert used his show to pay a moving tribute to france. but that's not all, he redid parts of the ed sullivan theater, putting the peace sign symbol that's become so iconic on his ceiling. he even changed his opening title sequence, which normally flies through new york, to show some of the most famous landmarks in paris. the eiffel tower, ark detriumph and moulin rouge. and finally today, one other story to tell you about. the emotional announcement from maryland's governor larry hogan yesterday that he is 100% cancer free. the governor was diagnosed with non-hodgkin's lymphoma in june
and says thanks to aggressive chemotherapy and other treatments the cancer that had progressed to stage 3 is now in remission. >> i've met so many amazing fellow patients, going through this process. to them, i was just another guy with cancer. a fellow dad, brother, grandfather, or friend. not a governor. their optimism, courage, and positive energy was my inspiration. particularly to kids. like my new pen pal, 5-year-old andrew oberley who is here with us today. he told me to keep my hugging person with me when i'm feeling down, along with nine other great pieces of advice. andrew is right up front with his mom caroline. [ applause ]
andrew and i have been exchanging notes back and forth for months now. i'm going to read this one. thank you, andrew. >> what a brave young man. by the way, andrew's leukemia is also in remission. two of the other tips he gave the governor, he said, it's okay to cry. and you'll learn to like your doctors. that's going to do it for me and "way too early." our coverage from paris continues on "morning joe." after a quick break.
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their bank americard cash rewards credit card to sweeten the holiday season. that's the spirit of rewarding connections. apply online or at a bank of america near you. terrorists will not destroy the republic because it is the republic that will destroy it. long live france, long live the republic. >> powerful moment yesterday. french president francois hollan hollande's speech to parliament followed by the french national anthem. this morning several new developments in the wake of the