tv News Nation MSNBC June 13, 2016 8:00am-9:01am PDT
orlando, florida. you can see pulse nightclub just a block and a half down the road from me. we have several very significant developments this morning. authorities just announced that 48 of the 49 people killed at the nightclub sunday morning have been identified. so far the names of 33 of those victims have been released after their families, the next of kin was notified. now, authorities say 53 other people were wounded. we'll have updates through this day about their conditions and those that have been released. but also this morning we're getting this chilling profile emerging of the gunman, 29-year-old omar mateen. federal officials say mateen took two trips to saudi arabia. one in 2011, the other in 2012. the saudi foreign ministry said he was there for muslim pilgr pilgrimag pilgrimages. authorities are saying he pledged his loyalty to isis during a call he made to 911 after initially opening fire. also today an isis radio broadcast called mateen, quote, one of its soldiers in america.
we also know mateen had been interviewed by the fbi in 2013 and 2014 for possible terrorist ties but was cleared. then we heard from mateen's ex-wife. she describes him as controlling, abusive and erratic. authorities also announced today new details on the weapons. officials found a third gun inside the suspect vehicle that mateen drove to orlando from his home in ft. pierce, florida. that's roughly about 120 miles away. mateen also had an ar-15 assault-style rifle and a 9 millimeter pistol that he bought legally just before the shooting. now, this morning, orlando's police chief talked about the decision to storm the nightclub after a three-hour standoff with mateen, which followed the initial shooting and two exchanges of gunfire between police and the suspect. >> based on statements made by the suspect, based on information we received from the suspect and from the hostages and people inside, we believed
that further loss of life was imminent. i made the decision to commence the rescue operation and do the explosive breach. the explosive breach did not penetrate the wall completely. we used our armored vehicle, the bearcat armored vehicle to punch a hole in that wall and defeat the wall, so there's a hole in the wall about two feet off the ground and about two or three feet wide. we were able to rescue dozens and dozens of people that came out of that hole. the suspect came out of that hole himself armed with a handgun and a long gun, engaged in a gun battle with officers where he was ultimately killed. >> all right. so as we mentioned, mateen's hometown is in ft. pierce, florida. i want to go to our colleague, nbc's kerry sanders, who is in ft. pierce and has some new information about the shooter's family, specifically his current wife. kerry, what can you tell us?
>> reporter: well, her name is nora zahi. it's not only his current wife but also his son. the question is where are they. i can now tell you that they are holed up in what would be the gunman's parents' home. they're staying there out of sight. they don't want to talk on camera, neither does the gunman's mother. but the gunman's father, seddique mateen has spoken. a large crowd of reporters went into his house say about 45 minutes ago to the point that it started to get somewhat disruptive. local police are there and they asked everybody to leave after the father said that he really didn't want to talk anymore. now he says he'd like to do yet another interview so we're arranging to have some cameras set up to talk to him again. but the real question has been as they're trying to piece the puzzle together of who may have known what, where is his current
wife and child. we can now report that they are still here in this community. they are in hiding inside the home of the gunman's parents. thomas. >> meanwhile, you had the opportunity, kerry, to sit down with that father before. characterize the exchange that you had and why he would want to give another televised interview after the information he first revealed to you. what do you think his game is in trying to get ahead of the story involving his son? >> reporter: there's a real conflict at play here. he has come out and denounced what his son has done. he says that had he known that his son had purchased weapons, he would have stopped him. had he known what was in his son's heart, he would have called police. he says that he does not encourage this, he does not applaud this, he condemns this. he says that his teachings from the koran do not in any way support this.
but then at the same time, because this falls into the category of questions about islamic -- islamic radical -- i mean radical islamic beliefs, he has online presented for some time a strong support of the taliban in afghanistan. this family is from afghanistan. the father left afghanistan with his wife 36 years ago. their son, omar, was actually born in new york, the gunman. but at the end of the day, he has espoused all of these what some might say are somewhat radical beliefs concerning support of the taliban, while at the same time he's saying that in no way does he support what his son has done here. i have a feeling that he's trying to ask the media to come in one more time because quite frankly it started getting a little contentious. i said, look, there's a conflict here, what you're saying here and what you're saying in your native language. online you posted videos. there seems to be a conflict when you're speaking in english
to american reporters your saying one thing but when you're speaking to an audience online you're saying something else. so we may hear something shortly about this but certainly there's some questions about whether what the father believed may in some way have influenced what the son did. >> kerry, keep us posted if you get an opportunity to get that interview and sit down with the dad again. i want to go to pete williams in washington, d.c. he's been at the front of breaking news on this story and has more about the federal side, the investigation of the shooting here. pete, investigators are looking into what, if anything, the family members may have known about the plans. have you heard any more about what the investigation has revealed? >> good morning, thomas. the fbi is interested in talking to the people in the house where kerry was just describing. they want to talk to members of the family. they want to talk to omar mateen's wife. they want to talk to his father. the question is did they have
any inkling of what he was planning. did they know anything was in his mind or did he talk about it and did they fail to say something about it and speak up and say something that could have prevented it. so that is an obvious question. it's one we're told they're actively pursuing. the u.s. attorney down there in tampa, who's responsible for that area, said this morning that there were other people under investigation. and we're told that's what he was talking about. now, that's a standard question. you may recall after the san bernardino shootings that the fbi was very interested to know what farook's mother might have known. she was never charged but that question is a big one whenever s something like this happens. secondly, they want to know what he was doing in those two trips overseas to saudi arabia in 2011
and 2012. t both times they were in march and he was taking part in a form of muslim pilgrimage but the fbi still wants to know if he was in touch with other people when he was there and what the purpose of those trips may turn out to be. >> pete, you make a really interesting point about the farook family and the mother, because she was in their home so much as one of the caregivers to their young child. we'll wait to see what, if anything, comes out of this investigation involving his current wife and the parents. the father already having this public profile in and of itself. but pete, there's been a lot of stuff online and social media postings about whether or not mateen operated alone here at pulse nightclub. can you confirm or help alleviate any of those concerns that there may have been anyone else involved with this shooting here as we know so far? >> right. both the fbi and the police say they know of no one else who was involved in the shooting.
there was some confusion earlier on that perhaps there was a second gunman. but they all say no, that's not the case. remember that the police said this morning that mateen claimed at one point to have explosives and there was concern about that. the police talked about it a lot yesterday about why they were so cautious to go back in once the rampage was over. but officials tell us there were no explosives, even though he apparently claimed during his long phone conversations with the police that he had explosives. there weren't any found. >> pete williams reporting for us out of d.c. pete, i know you're going to stay on top of this and at the very front of the story so i'll be talking to you later in this day. i want to go to nbc's janet shamlian. janet is in orlando just a short distance away from the orlando regional medical center. this is just so close, janet. they were so fortunate that when this tragedy happened that that medical facility was just a stone's throw, a few blocks from pulse.
so what are you learning about the people that are being treated in the hospital and whether or not we're going to see certain folks be released today? >> reporter: first of all, thomas, you're right about the distance and it's important notification because you are just down the street from where i am. it's 0.4 of a mile, a three-minute car ride so certainly some lives were saved because of this trauma one medical center's proximity to the club where this happened. what we have is some new information for you. we now know that there are only 29 patients still in the hospital. unfortunately, five of them are in grave condition at this hour. so a number of people have been released between last night and the current hour that we are in. in addition, they have six surgeries scheduled for today. they started very early this morning and finished up late last night. the medical team here working around the clock. we are starting to hear some of the stories from survivors, people who either didn't go -- or left the club early before this happened or that they have now -- families that were searching for their loved ones
have now located them. a mother that we spoke to yesterday, she was anguished. her name is jacqueline perez because she could not find her son. he was not on any list. and last evening, she assumed the worst. and the great news is late last night she got word that he was here in the hospital. he's in critical condition, shot four times. three times through the back. he's having surgery. he's expected to make it out. and this morning, she is full of gratitude. here's what she had to say. >> i thought i wouldn't live this but here i am. i just thank god that tony was able to hold my hand. his tears just broke my heart. and i told him you can't leave me, you can't. >> god had his hand over me last night. every day before i leave my house, i ask god to keep his hand over me and keep me safe. >> they call called me making sure i was okay. i even had a family member break
in and say i just want to make sure you're okay. >> reporter: and those two young menu saw at the end, they attribute their survival to basically just good luck. both of them were at the club. one was tired and left early. the other said he just had a bad feeling about the evening and decided to go home. so again, some bright spots here among the sadness. the medical center teamworking around the clock hoping they will not have to add to that tragic death toll. thomas. >> so many stories of heroism emerging from folks that banded together to help those that were wounded and hurt here at pulse nightclub, get them to a medical facility for treatment. obviously in so many cases prooefbting a situation of potentially death. thank you so much. we'll have more details from here in orlando, the site of the worse mass shooting in history. authorities, what they are saying about the suspect's claim about allegiance to isis and how
the victims of his rampage are being remembered today. before we go to break, here's one witness that describes what he saw as the gunman opened fire. >> after a couple of shots, you hear the bang, bang, bang. you're like, okay, this isn't a song, this is reality. you hear the screaming and see the blood. the guy next to me falls over and that's when i'm like, oh, look behind me and you see those in the vip area going down and you see other people going down and that's when i go down. i'm like i've got to crawl out of here. i've got to get out of here somewhere because i wasn't running, there was no way. if people were standing, i'm not going to be a moving target. what are you doing? getting faster. huh? detecting threats faster, responding faster, recovering faster. when your security's built in not just bolted on, and you protect the data and not just the perimeter, you get faster. wow, speed kills. systems open to all, but closed to intruders.
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had terrorist ties. isis radio is now calling mateen one of its soldiers. as we've been reporting, mateen called 911 and pledged his allegiance to the terror group just moments before he opened fire behind me here at pulse nightclub. nbc chief foreign correspondent, richard engel, joins me now from istanbul. richard, the fbi interviewed mateen three times for possible links to terror. so explain what more we know about any potential connection, if there really is one here. why would he have been cleared through those interviews as not potentially a true suspect? >> reporter: well, you know, thomas, over the last several months we've been spending a great deal of time investigating isis members from the united states who have come overseas, usually coming through turkey, to join the militant group in iraq and syria. we specifically were looking at 15 members whose names appeared in isis personnel files. during the course of that
investigation, we found that in many cases the fbi had contacted people, had contacted their family members but didn't finds enough evidence to take them into custody. and today i've been speaking with counterterrorism officials and say there is a real challenge here. the fbi generally is in the business of trying to collect evidence to lead to successful trial cases, to lead to prosecutions. it is not in the preventative terrorism business, where you operate with intelligence and try and use what could be just sometimes a fraction of intelligence to take preventative measures, so you have to find the balance of protecting people's civil liberties, which means not acting until there is ample amount of intelligence, and using the intelligence that you have to look forward and prevent terrorist attacks. so the fbi frankly is in a very difficult position if it is doing a traditional law
enforcement role to gather evidence and try and win cases in court. >> when we think about the two trips that mateen is said to have taken in 2011 and 2012 to saudi arabia and then the interviews with authorities in 2013 and 2014, how significant is it that those trips were made and now research that goes into figuring out exactly what his footprint was during what they described at that time as muslim pilgrimages? >> so saudi officials say that he did two trips to saudi arabia to perform the lesser pilgrimage, the hoge being the greater hill gr eer pilgrimage. millions do this kind of thing, they go and participate this these religious pilgrimages and it's not necessarily a suspicious activity, people do it all the time. in retrospect, now that he has
done this horrific incident, you start to look at incidents like that with more focus. but if you're an fbi agent and you interview someone and they went to saudi arabia and they said they went for a religious pilgrimage, that's not particularly unusual. you interview someone and there was this light connection that the fbi has described between him and a previous american suicide bomber, the first american who became a suicide bomber in syria, but not enough connection was determined at the time, according to the fbi, for it to be significant. now clearly in retrospect, all of these things start to form a pattern and start to be concerning. but i've spoken to a senior counterterrorism official today who said the fbi is going to come out looking very badly after all of this, but he felt they're doing generally a pretty good job. but it's the standard that they're being held to. that they're still being held to
a traditional law enforcement standard instead of an intelligence gathering standard. he said america has to decide whether we want to change that or not and there are consequences if we do. >> when we talk about that and you talk about the civil liberties involved, there's certainly the data that is collected and people can look at certainly analytically from the fbi perspective about behavioral science, about what makes a person more likely to be a candidate, whether it's even through as publicly as social media postings. but do you think that's something that the fbi is really going to have to tackle after what we have lived through in this country from the boston marathon bombings, out to the west coast in san bernardino and now down here in central florida with this latest shooting? >> reporter: if you look, there is a trajectory of attacks and they have been increasingly sophisticated and increasingly deadly. in 2014, there was a very low scale crude attack when
policemen were attacked with a hatchet on a subway platform in new york city. then there was a couple of gunmen. this attack claimed by isis in 2015, who opened fire at a convention in texas held by a right-wing group urging people to make cartoons of the prophet muhammad. then there was san bernardino, the first mass casualty attack where the couple opened fire on their co-workers and now an even more significant mass kacasualt attack with persons killed in florida. increasingly deadly and increasingly sophisticated when you look at them and so that is something absolutely that the justice department and the fbi are going to have to look at. you now have a pattern. when you have a pattern, you can plot out where it's going and where it seems to be going is someplace very disturbing. >> richard, when we look at also
the potential of other people being inspired by something like this or seeing the vulnerabilities of what the simplicity means of going to a nightclub here in orlando on saturday night and knowing that it's popular and killed with folks -- how tough is that -- i just realized that we have difficulty with our shot talking to richard engle. we apologize for that and will get that back. but talking about coming up for people especially during june pride, if there is going to be a reaction to how people go ahead with festivities. this is a month that is typically celebrated by the lgbt community to respond and talk about discriminatory policies that still exist and to push back against violence that was exhibited roughly 40 and 50 years ago when the first civil rights movement began for the lgbt community. so it seems to be something that they need to talk about as they plan for the rest of this month. i do want to go now to ron
allen. he joins me now from the white house. ron, we do expect to hear from the president shortly. >> we do, thomas. he's in a briefing now and has been for the last hour or so with his homeland security chief, director of the fbi as well as others, the counterterrorism team as well, trying to get an update on where things stand. we expect the president to make brief remarks. it's not going to be a lengthy discussion. there's a pool in there, so we won't have the ability to ask a lot of questions about where things stand right now. as you know, the president came out yesterday and expressed his concern about what had happened, he expressed his sympathy for the victims and promised a thorough and complete investigation. this isly an issue that has been of grave concern since he's been in office. he's had to come out by our count at least 14 times to make public remarks with a mass shooting somewhere in the united states. we also know that the president has a team that's been in place for some time now trying to, as they put it, scrub the existing gun control laws to see what
executive action the president could take, if any, to try to do something about this. he has described this as one of the most frustrating aspects of his time in office. we also get the sense that based on the recommendations, the executive orders that the president issued back in january, which had to do mostly with administrative steps to try to expand background checks, that there's really not much more that the administration can do. i guess the question is what more can they do because they certainly don't expect congress to do anything in the remaining time the president has in office to address what the president would call gun safety measures. but again, we're expecting the president to make brief remarks sometime very shortly in the next few minutes. basically we'll get a sense of what he now knows about what happened there in orlando, what more may be known about, for example, this question of how this individual was apparently questioned and monitored by the fbi several times, yet he was still able to purchase a gun and still able to carry out this
heinous crime. also questions about what the president is doing, what the administration is doing in the continuing fight against isis, even though this is thought to be at this point an attack inspired by isis. in recent months the president, the administration has said a lot about how they feel that they have turned the corner and they have the momentum in the war against isis in iraq and in syria. so perhaps it will be more about that and whether there will be some sort of response, some sort of retaliation. we have not heard anything from the administration about the comments made by donald trump about the president nor hillary clinton. that too perhaps will come up -- certainly will come up in questions to josh earnest at the white house briefing that will come later this afternoon. again, hopefully very soon we will hear more detail from the president as to what he knows about what happened and why in orlando. thomas. >> ron, have you heard anything from the white house about scheduling? we know that the president traveled to san bernardino in december of last year after the tragedy that happened there. do we have any idea if the president plans to travel to
orlando in light of this massacre? >> no specific plans as of yet, thomas. yes, that would be the expectation that at some point he would go. he tends to go to these horrific incidents to participate in mainly leading the families. i think most of the time this has happened pretty much behind closed doors. i think of the charleston shooting, the church shooting where he eulogized the pastor, the state senator reverend pinckney who was one of the nine victims killed there. what the president will do, how he will respond specifically to this we don't know. but again, every expectation that he will at some point travel to orlando. every expectation that he will continue to speak out about this issue of gun violence. again, he has said on a number of occasions that this is one of the most frustrating, one of the most devastating issues that he has had to face. he often talks about how he has to confront the families, how he
has to deal with their emotions. and he again has been so frustrated, he would say, by his efforts to get the congress to pass some sort of, again, what they call common sense gun safety measures. the last time we heard from the president on that issue was back in january when the president announced a series of executive actions. i can tell you that folks on the other side of this issue, folks in the gun lobby and others saw what the president did as not terribly threatening. behind me you see the pool coming out of the executive office, the oval office, i could say. the process now is that they're going to play a tape back of what the president's remarks were. there's a briefing going on over there as to exactly what he said, so we hope to have that for you momentarily, very shortly. hopefully within the next couple of minutes. thomas. >> all right, ron, thank you, sir, very much. we will be back to that the second that it happens so that our viewers can see that. real quickly i want to go to msnbc's cal perry who is live at
msnbc world headquarters in new york with more about the nightclub behind me. >> hey, thomas. we're getting a look at the layout of the nightclub. just jump on me if the president comes out and we'll switch immediately to that. this was the outdoor patio. a lot of survivors on the patio. one of the reasons here is you've got this fence and it's not that tall. the thing that i'm going to talk about time and time as we look at it -- there this is the entrance. there was one entrance and one exit to this club. that is a significant issue. here is your inside layout of the club. a couple of things to point out. the bathrooms here, men's restroom here as well as here and you have a women's restroom here. so many people who texted family from inside the club were holed up in this bathroom which leads us to believe that the gunman was working his way here. this is the dance floor. this is where most of the people we believe were massacred. you have the bars here. like any club, thomas.
we're familiar with how clubs are laid out and this one is no different. but again, the thing that we're going to continue to talk about is this is labeled as the lobby. this is the only entrance in and out of this club. so once the gunman was forced back inside the club, inside this entrance by police, he was able to move throughout this area and not worry that people were fleeing outside entrances because there were none. again, the only one that really would have been accessible was this patio here. and people were able to get through this fence. but that is really the only area where people were able to avoid what we now know was this horrific massacre inside the club. thomas. >> cal, thanks so much. i want to go back to brian williams. brian has been leading our coverage from the very beginning of this breaking news. brian, now we expect to hear from the president. >> hey, thomas, yes. as ron allen just talked us through, cameras and some reporters have just come out of a meeting with the president. the president meeting with his
national security staff. we are somewhat surprised to report that the president spoke for what is said to be 14 minutes to the cameras when they came in. this is the first time we will have today the president on the record on this tragedy in orlando, florida. as ron allen reported, by our count the president has been forced to comment 14 times in his presidency following a mass casualty event. ron allen is standing by in the briefing room. as he was on television just moments ago, the press pool came out of that blue door. ron, was this in the oval office or the cabinet room or the roosevelt room? >> the oval office, brian. i can see the tape being played back over there now, but i have a couple of notes from what the president had to say. he expressed, again, his thoughts and prayers to the victims' families.
he expressed solidarity with the lgbt community. interestingly, he says that it appears the killer based on a preliminary investigation appears to have been inspired by extremist information over the internet. that the materials are being searched, that there is no clear evidence that directly externally connects isis, even though we know that the killer pledged his allegiance to isis, but there's no evidence that he was part of any larger plot. the comparison is made that it appears to be similar to what happened in san bernardino, but we don't know, for example. it's an example of what the president is going to call homegrown terrorism. the weapon was obtained legally. it appears one weapon was used to carry out the assault, an assault rifle. the handgun, the other -- one was prchld at a store. the handgun required only a three-day waiting period. and the president saying it's not difficult to obtain. countering the ideology, the
president will say is just as important as countering external threats. on guns, the president said we have to consider how being lax on firearms, what we can do. the concern about the debate. you'll recall, brian, the president has said on a number of occasions how when these events happen, we tend to go through what he called a practice pattern of response and condemnation. the president saying that he hopes and he will try to get beyond that. has on a number of occasions. on the lgbt connection, what is known as the groups -- let's see what more. on gun control the fact is that we will make this a challenge for law enforcement to alert -- again, very krcryptic notes but the president has said that this sort of homegrown terrorism is a very difficult thing. again, a lone wolf attack of some sort. i think we have the tape now. back to you. >> as you know, the president has expressed frustration in
general that this sort of thing takes on a pattern. we have a tragedy becomes a national tragedy in its scope and then we talk about it. here now is the president's remarks from the oval office. >> are we all set? okay. i just had the opportunity to get the latest briefing from fbi director comey as well as deputy attorney general yates and the rest of my national security team about the tragedy that took place in orlando. they are going to be doing a more extensive briefing around noon, just a little bit after noon over at fbi headquarters, so i will allow them to go into all the details, but i thought it was important for you to hear directly from me. first of all, our hearts go out to the families of those who have been killed. our prayers go to those who have been wounded. this is a devastating attack on all americans.
it is one that is particularly painful for the people of orlando, but i think we all recognize that this could have happened anywhere in this country. we feel enormous solidarity and grief on behalf of the families that have been affected. the fact that it took place at a club frequented by the lgbt community i think is also relevant. we're also looking at all the motivations of the killer, but it's a reminder that regardless of race, religion, faith or sexual orientation, we're all americans. we need to be looking after each other and protecting each other at all times in the face of this kind of terrible act. with respect to the killer,
there's been a lot of reporting that's been done. it's important to emphasize that we're still at the preliminary stages of the investigation. there's a lot more that we have to learn. the one thing that we can say is that this is being treated as a terrorist investigation. it appears that the shooter was inspired by various extremist information that was disseminated over the internet. all those materials are currently being searched, exploited, so we will have a better sense of the pathway that the killer took in making a decision to launch this attack. as director comey i think will indicate, at this stage we see no clear evidence that he was
directed externally. it does appear that at the last minute he announced allegiance to isil, but there is no evidence so far that he was in fact directed by them and there's also no direct evidence that he was part of a larger plot. in that sense it appears to be similar to what we saw in san bernardino, but we don't yet know. and this is part of what is going to be important in many terms of the investigation. as far as we can tell right now, this is certainly an example of the kind of homegrown extremism that all of us have been so concerned about for a very long time. it also appears that he was able to obtain these weapons legally, because he did not have a criminal record that in some ways would prohibit him from
purchasing these weapons. it appears that one of those weapons he was able to just carry out of the store, an assault rifle. a handgun, a glock, which had a lot of clips in it. he was apparently required to wait for three days under florida law. but it does indicate the degree to which it was not difficult for him to obtain these kinds of weapons. director comey will discuss the fact that there had been some investigation of him in the past that was triggered, but as director comey i think will indicate, the fbi followed the procedures that they were supposed to and did a proper job. at the end of the day, this is something that we are going to have to grapple with, making
sure that even as we go after isil and other extremist organizations overseas, even as we hit their leadership, even as we go after their infrastructure, even as we take key personnel off the field, even as we disrupt external plots, that one of the biggest challenges we are going to have is this kind of propaganda and perversions of islam that you see generated on the internet and the capacity for that to seep into the minds of troubled individuals or weak individuals and seeing them motivated then to take actions against people here in the united states and elsewhere in the world that are tragic. and so countering this extremist ideology is increasingly going to be just as important as
making sure that we are disrupting more extensive plots engineered from the outside. we are also going to have to make sure that we think about the risks we are willing to take by being so lax in how we make very powerful firearms available to people in this country. and this is something that obviously i've talked about for a very long time. you know, my concern is that we start getting into a debate, as has happened in the past, which is an either/or debate. the suggestion is either we think about something as terrorism and we ignore the problems with easy access to firearms or it's all about firearms and we ignore the role -- the very real role that
organizations like isil have in generating extremist views inside this country. it's not an either/or, it's a both and. we have to go after these terrorist organizations and hit them hard. we have to counter extremism. but we also have to make sure that it is not easy for somebody who decides they want to harm people in this country to be able to obtain weapons to get at them. and my hope is, is that over the next days and weeks that we are being sober about how we approach this problem, that we let the facts get determined by our investigators, but we also do some reflection in terms of how we can best tackle what is going to be a very challenging problem. not just here in this country but around the world. again, my final point is just to
extend our deepest sympathies to the families of those who are affected and to send our prayers to those who are surviving and are in hospitals right now, their family members hoping that they get better very soon. but in the meantime, you can anticipate sometime around noon that director comey and deputy attorney general yates will provide you with a more full briefing about this. okay? [ inaudible question ] >> i think we don't yet know the motivations, but here's what we do know. organizations like isil or organizations like al qaeda or those who have perverted islam and created these radical
annilistic organizations, one of the groups they target are gays and lesbians because they believe that they do not abide by their attitudes towards sexuality. now, we also know these are organizations that think it's fine to take captive women and enslave them and rape them. so there clearly are connections between the attitudes of an organization like this and their attitudes towards tolerance and pluralism and a belief that all people are treated equally regardless of sexual orientation. that is something threatening to them. women being empowered is threatening to them. so yes, i'm sure they're going to -- we will find that there
are connections regardless of the particular motivations of this killer, there are connections between this vicious, bankrupt ideology and general attitudes towards gays and lesbians. and unfortunately that's something that the lgbt community is subject to not just by isil but by a lot of groups that purport to speak on behalf of god around the world. >> what are your thoughts about the fact that the violent incidents over these years, there is not any move to reform gun control in this country? >> april, i think you know what i think about it. the fact that we make it this
challenging for law enforcement, for example, even to get -- to get alerted, that somebody who they are watching has purchased a gun, and if they do get alerted, sometimes it's hard for them to stop them from getting a gun, is crazy. it's a problem. and we have to, i think, do some soul searching. but again, the danger here is that then is ends up being the usual political debate. the nra and the gun control folks say that, oh, obama doesn't want to talk about terrorism. if you talk about terrorism, then people say why aren't you looking at issues of gun
control. the point is, is that if we have self-radicalized individuals in this country, then they are going to be very difficult oftentimes to find ahead of time. and how easy it is for them to obtain weapons is in some cases going to make a difference as to whether they're able to carry out attacks like this or not. and we make it very easy for individuals who are troubled or disturbed or want to engage in violent acts to get very powerful weapons very quickly. and that's a problem. it's a problem regardless of their motivations. it's a problem for a young man who can walk into a church in south carolina and murder nine
people who offered to pray with him. it's a problem when an angry young man on a college campus decides to shoot people because he feels disrespected. it's certainly a problem when we have organizations like isil or al qaeda who have actively trying to promote violence and are doing so very effectively over the internet. because we know that at some point they're going to be out of 300 million people, there are going to be some individuals who find for whatever reason that that kind of horrible propaganda enticing. and if that happens and that person can get a weapon, that's a problem. >> thanks, everyone. thank you, guys. >> thank you, guys. >> thanks, guys.
>> thanks, everyone. >> you'll get more from director comey. >> thank you, guys. >> so that was the scene in the oval office. now that was on a tape delay. that took place about 15 to 20 minutes ago, but that is the very latest. that's the latest from the administration. let's go back to ron allen, who is just separated by a corridor from where that took place. ron, you've covered this president for some time. you noted in your remarks earlier on our air that this is by our count the 14th incident where the president has been forced to publicly comment after a mass casualty event caused by guns. his voice is -- it is dripping with sadness over that and frustration, evident frustration over the lack of action. >> brian, yeah. frustration, anger, sadness, all
that. and one thing that the president didn't really say a lot about is what he is going to do now. what specifically. he outlined the problem very clearly and it's a problem that's obviously we're all very familiar with. he says the problem is gun enforcement. the interesting comment about how the fact that law enforcement, he said, even when they're watching someone, even when they questioned someone, that individual still has what the president says is easy access to high-powered weaponry, which the president said it crazy. i haven't heard it yet, but i can anticipate the reaction from gun owners advocates who will say that that's not the problem. we didn't hear the president say a lot about mental illness. he did mention some aspects of that, but that again is another aspect of this problem. and the other thing that's very interesting, it's clear that part of this battle is going to be fought online. the president described this individual was being inspired by
isis, as being someone who was self-radicalized by what he was reading on the internet, information that's clearly accessible to anyone. what is the administration going to do about that? and of course that gets into all kinds of questions about free speech comparisons that if you can eliminate or try to of pornography. so, a lot of on the table and the president obviously is anguished and expressing his deepest sympathies to the families and the victims. >> the president is making a
distinction between the two. i want to show you the next venue so far of an empty table with flags on the background. this is where we'll shortly be hearing from the fbi director. that's the news out of washington, we are thinking sometimes around 12:15 eastern time. now, back down to our anchor location in orlando, florida with thomas roberts. >> reporter: brian, thanks so much. she's gracious enough to join me and brian made the distinction of the president's language over the case of what we have seen with pulse and the suspect. the president feels that this is inspired from isis directly. what can you say? >> i was in the command post right around the corner yesterday with law enforcement, we are part of this investigation so i cannot say a lot.
i will say this is radical islam at its worse. >> the team has been on the fbi radar and now we know two troops are taken to audelia trying to figure out. know thing that weapons were purchased, the third found in the vehicle down there, we are waiting on the atf to get back to this. is there a problem with assault weapons? >> you will have to talk to fbi and atf regarding the background. we'll let federal authorities speak to that because now we know at one point, i believe he was on the watch list and there were issues with them. >> reporter: so all of that may have got past them and they did not have policy in place to make a red flag popped up when he put in the system to purchase those two weapons. is there a flaw in the system
and easy access to weapons that should not go in the hand of everyday people. >> we started having these conversations with law enforcement here in our state. we, as a state, need to start monitoring that ourselves as well. we are having those conversations about people who have been on a watch list and about people who have had access with terrorist organizations. we are going to protect and do everything we can to protect our lbgt community and our city of orlando and my state of florida and our country. if we have to do it within our state, we'll do it within our state. >> reporter: when you think of what this means of the vulnerability of folks out on saturday night having a good time and a crazy person comes in with bad intent. what's your message to the people far and on the world watching this that might be feeling afraid. >> that's what they want. that's why it is called terror
and that's what terrorists want. they want us to be afraid and lock their doors. i am so glad we are out here today. we are right at this club where it happened. i am headed to meet with the family members, that's what i am cottonwood na coordinated. we know only 24 members have been able to identify the 49 and probably growing body count. >> reporte >> yes, air code 407-246-4357. >> reporter: 407-246-4357. >> we are asking only loved ones and partners call. we cannot release the names until family members are notified. thank you. >> reporter: thank you for making the time for us, we appreciate it. back live here in florida, we
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from the makers of zantac. we are back live in orlando florida, we are waiting for an update. we have mourners across the country, they'll be holding memorials and vigils as this community is coming together. tonight, a rally is held outside of new york city stone wall, that's the location known as the burning place. mayor deblasio is expected to be in attendance there. this morning, the new york stock exchange of a moment of silence in remembrance of those who lost their lives and the families left behind.
the creator of the hit music awards, hamilton, devoted part of his speech to this tragedy. >> nothing here is promised. the show proves that history remembers we live through times when hate and fears are stronger. we rise and fall, remembering it is love and it is love cannot be killed or swept aside. >> reporter: there, we have emanuel moral there passionate there. much more live coverage here on orlando, i am thomas roberts. don't go anywhere. kate snow is picking things up. >> right now we are live in the investigation of the mass
shootishoo shooting of america's history continues. we know 49 people are dead and 50 wounded and 48 of the 49 have been killed and identified at this point. authorities are still in the process of informing the families to. the gunman omar mateen traveled in saudi arabia twice once in 2011 and again in 2012. president obama after meeting with his national security team expressed solidarity with the families and victims. >> our hearts go out to families of those who have been killed and prayers going to those who have been wounded. this is a devastating attack on all americans. >> this hour, we are expecting several major updates and any moment fbi director, james comy will be giving us