tv CNN Newsroom With Poppy Harlow CNN December 6, 2015 3:00pm-4:01pm PST
that's why if we're ever late for an appointment, we'll credit your account $20. it's our promise to you. we're doing everything we can to give you the best experience possible. because we should fit into your life. not the other way around. 6:00 eastern this sunday evening. we begin with breaking news just in to us here at cnn. the justice department is getting ready to announce an investigation into the chicago police department. a source familiar with the situation tells our evan perez that the department will begin a pattern and practice investigation. the department has been under scrutiny since releasing showing an officer shooting and killing
17-year-old laquan mcdonald, shooting 16 times. that officer now charged with first-degree murder, awaiting trial. more on that later this hour. meantime, two hours from now president obama will try to reassure the nation that he has a plan to destroy isis and keep the american people safe in the wake of the attacks in san bernardino, california, and in paris. he will speak from the oval offices. that is a rare backdrop. he's only used it twice before during his entire presidency. both times back in 2010, when he spoke about the end of u.s. combat operations in iraq and about the bp oil spill. cnn senior white house correspondent tim acosta joining us with a previous of the president it's address. jim, you've been working your sources, finding out what we might learn from the president tonight. >> reporter: that's right, poppy. this is an effort to show the president has commander in chief, reassuring americans about the fears that they're experiencing right now, in the heart of the holiday season. and i did talk to a senior administration official earlier
today who said the president will use this oval office address tonight. as you said, poppy, it's a rare form for the president, to pledge to use any tool possible to keep america safe and destroy isis. he sees this as an opportunity to speak directly to the american people. obviously all those people watching football games this afternoon and this evening, that's a huge television audience. and the president wants talk about a moment, this official said, that is understandably upsetting for nearly every american. after paris and california, the address is about giving president time in front of a big audience to convey what he regards, according to this official, as his unmistakable commitment to the american people to keep us safe, and the threat that is posed by self-radicalized jihadists in the united states, how this threat has evolved over time, and what the president's strategy entails for dealing with all of this in the days and weeks ahead. the president will talk about
the steps he's taken since the paris attacks as well. the president wants to demonstrate how it's critical for americans to come together, uphold american values, in the words of this senior administration official, as the u.s. confronts these extremists who are trying to terrorize the entire world. there have been a lot of comments made in the political theater, with the election coming up, about muslim americans and their place in american society. and i can tell you from talking about people inside this white house, the president is very determined to send the message across the country that muslim-americans are just as american as the rest of us and should not be feared, poppy. >> thank you, jim. jim will be with us throughout the evening as we lead up to the president's history-making address. here to talk about what jim just discussed, the author of "in the land of invisible women," and a national spokesman for the muslim community. it's such an important
conversation to have, thank you for being with me. as a muslim living in america, we just heard jim say the president is very concerned about sort of this increasing anti-muslim rhetoric. what do you want to hear from the president tonight? >> well, as muslims who believe in the messiah, we believe is the safety and security of this nation is paramount. what we want to hear is a thoughtful and mature approach to finally identifying that short term and long term solution that we were hoping for to finally get rid of groups like isis, to eliminate the threat. short term is to eliminate the imminent threat, to work with secular leaders in the muslim world to muster up a force that isis can face that will destroy its infrastructure, halt its growth, and return the land, the conquered land back to the countries to which they belong. but if it's only the short term physical approach, it's doomed to failure, which is why under the guidance of our khadifa
muslim community, we want to present a true version of islam that combats the extremist vision. we're launching a campaign next month to define true islam. that's a war of ideas we need to win. >> let's take a listen to what donald trump had to say on cbs's "face the nation" this morning. >> if they thought there was something wrong with that group and they saw what was happening, and they didn't want to called police because they didn't want to be profiling, i think that's pretty bad. people are dead. a lot of people are dead right now. so everybody wants to be politically correct. and that's part of the problem that we have with our country. >> do you think that he has a point, that people are being too politically correct, and therefore some potentially not speaking up about risk or threats? >> it's very difficult to say,
because it's mr. trump that is saying that. there's certainly been a struggle in the national conversation for the last year to identify islamist, which is radical islam, and distinguish it from islam. my concern is the gop presidential campaign particularly has so stoked anti-muslim rhetoric, and the mainstream republican candidates have not been able to pull back that conversation, that our president, the leader of the free world, is going to have a very difficult time tonight. we want him to reassure all americans, those of us that make our home here and becoming american on friday, we are americans as much as we are muslim, christian, jewish, or anything else. there's not a competition. he needs to reassure us while admitting we are engaged in a battle with radical islam, islamism. that includes territory. i testified to congress three years ago in favor of surveillance for radical muslims
and i stand by that. my concern is the president has been disengaged in this conversation such that his remarks could potentially be obsolete, even though i welcome his efforts tonight. his efforts tonight just how critical this is. we're at more of a turning point now in the united states than i think we were immediately post-9/11. >> i would like you both to listen to this. in the wake of what we saw in san bernardino, liberty university president jerry fallwell jr. told students this. >> i've always thought if more people had concealed carry permits, we could end those muslims before they walk in and kill us. >> harris, your response? >> no, actually i tweeted about this earlier today. very sloppy, very dangerous language, especially for someone who is espousing to be a leader. this is the type of rhetoric we're hearing also from some of
the people vying for the presidency. we've herbed the lune aparticula aparticulars -- lunatics out there, but now we're hearing people like this, thought leaders who are influential in their circles, who are castigating an entire group of people simply because of the actions of the lunatics. i call jerry out for a public dialogue on this, because he's wrong. >> i saw you on bill o'reilly, he asked you an interesting question. he said we need to see a million muslim march, to have you and other leaders out there to make this clear. what do you think of that idea? >> i spoke to bill off-camera. the underlying point is the point that there hasn't been a visible show of unity among muslims who are trying to pave the way forward for what is the real reaction of islam. so whether that's a physical demonstration or it's something that's in a digital platform, we
agree we need to have a joint effort, which is why we believe this campaign we're launching next month will define the principles of true islam versus extremists. >> let me read you this, this came from hillary clinton earlier today talking about why she won't use the term "radical islam." she says it's a recruiting tool for isis and other radical jihadists. do you really? >> i disagree. muslim scholars have identified there is a deviant political ideology called islamism which preaches not just violent islamism as we've seen in san bernardino and paris, but also the ideological underpinnings beneath that. it is a political totalitarian ideology. to go back to the university president, shame on him.
he is shaming the founder of our nation, the declaration of independence, thomas jefferson, as if to protect the imaginary muslim. we are so far departed, i'm worried busineabou about islami here on our soil, but i also worry about the things that are being said. the stakes are very high. >> thank you very much, an important conversation. after the break, much more about the justice department getting ready to announce an investigation into the chicago police department. more on that. stay with us. the pursuit of healthier. it begins from the second we're born. because, healthier doesn't happen all by itself. it needs to be earned every day. using wellness to keep away illness.
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investigation into the chicago police department, after a video of an officer-involved shooting sparked unrest in the city. the department will initiate a pattern and practice investigation. the police department in chicago is under intense scrutiny since the video was released, showing the officer shooting laquan mcdonald 16 times, killing him. what is a pattern and practice investigation? how common is it? how rare is it? >> certainly it is not common, but it is something that has happened in other police departments across our country. the investigation is run by the civil rights division. and the goal is really to reform any practices and patterns of,
let's say, excessive force or biased policing or any sort of unconstitutional practices. and so in chicago, this is a department that does have a history of police shootings. it does have a history of many, many complaints from the citizens of chicago. it certainly has a history of officers not being found accountable for police shootings. so there is no question that the justice department will look at this history. it is a very thorough investigation, poppy. it's an investigation that no police department in the country would want to happen to it. and part of the investigation is that investigators from the fbi will hear from the community. that is a critical, critical part of the investigation. they will also interview many police officers. and i will tell you that it
takes years, especially considering the size of the chicago police department, we know how large the police department is, and the culmination of that sort of investigation is a public report. so we will all hear about the findings of the justice department. and to be clear, these aren't recommendations, if there is a pattern and practice of discrimination or excessive force that is found. the justice department calls them recommendations, but they are not, because if the recommendations aren't taken up by the police department, then the justice department files a lawsuit. and so to be clear, this is a monumental thing that is happening now in terms of the chicago police department. >> you heard it there from our legal analyst, a monumental announcement coming, the justice department will launch a pattern and practice investigation into the chicago police department. straight ahead, i just sat
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oval office. his focus, terrorism. i just sat down with new york senator kirsten gillibrand. she represents the state of new york, a place that knows the threat of terror all too well. she also sits on the senate armed services committee. here is her take on what she is calling an era of terrorism. senator, thank you for being here, appreciate it. >> thank you. >> tonight the president will address the nation. he will focus on terrorism, the threat of isis. what do the american people need to hear from the president tonight? >> all of us will be looking for his vision on how he plans to address this long term challenge. the president has been right to engage in multilateral negotiations with our allies and other leaders in the middle east, to create a broad based approach. this is not a problem that's going to be involved in a day, a week, a month, or a year. it's going to take a very long time, it's a generational struggle. so president obama i think will lay out his plan and vision for how he plans to address it.
we're new yorkers here in new york. since 9/11, there's been over a dozen terror attempts to this city. and we have extraordinary first responders from nypd to our fbi who work everyday to keep us safe. but this is an era of terrorism. we have to be vigilant. what i tell my constituents, one of the last terror attempts, it was a t-shirt salesman who saw something and said something. we can protect ourselves. >> when you say this is an era of terrorism, those are very strong words. and as you know, the president has come under some fierce criticism from opponents who say his language does not match the threat. do you agree? >> i think it is an era of terrorism, because i see it every day. and i know from nypd and fbi how many terror attempts there are in our great city here in new york. >> do you want to hear more from the president on that, even stronger words? he told cbs this week that isis
does not pose an existential threat to the united states. >> i think the president is very focused on the issue, syria is a problem that he needs authorization of use of force in syria if he intends to put troops on the ground. i have not supported some of his past strategies of arming opposition, arming the rebels, because i was highly concerned those weapons would get in the hands of isis. so the president is having this conversation tonight, and i think it's a very important conversation he's having. he needs to engage congress, he needs to engage the american people and telling them what he has done, because there's a lot going on throughout the middle east, and here in america, to keep america safer. i think the more he shares some of his approach. obviously without undermining the nature of these operations and undermining the nature of these tragedies, i think the more he talks to the american
people, the more he can allay his concerns, because people are worried. i don't agree with governors to be fearing refugees, we don't need to fear them. we welcome children and families into our communities across new york over decades to wonderful effect, to having families come here, raise their families, start businesses, be our entrepreneurs. we should stand strong as americans in believable not only are we a nation of immigrants, but the statute of liberty stands for something. she stands for, we take all your sick, your tired, the people who need our help. and we should stand by those values. and so we should be welcoming refugees. we should have a very broad-based approach to making sure we can find homes for families. but we can also be vigilant and protect our communities from terrorism. and the president i think tonight will lay out some of his vision and strategy to do that. >> we are new yorkers. i moved to new york just a few days before 9/11.
i was in california this week, following the attack in san bernardino. talk to me about new york specifically and what specifically has been stepped up in the wake of paris and the california attack. >> well, i was at ground zero today, standing with first responders from 9/11. obviously that was the gravest terror attack on american soil. men and women are still dying from diseases they had from the toxins released from when the towers collapsed. we need to stand by our first responders. one of the things i'm acting on this week is making sure we stand by our first responders and pass a 9/11 healthcare bill. that's an important statement, because if you look at what happened in california, those first responders were on the scene. >> four minutes response time. >> they didn't ask is it okay for us to go. they did that their jobs. that's what our first responders did after 9/11. one of the things congress can do in congress this week is pass that bill, to tell all first
responders, no matter who attacks us, you answer the call of duty and put yourself in harm's way for all of us. that's very important for our national character and for the morality of this country. >> is new york city, new york state, as much as you can speak coming as a representative of all of us living here, doing anything differently on the security front in the wake of san bernardino? >> i'm sure they are. i have not been briefed on all the changes. i've been briefed in washington on some of those national changes for travel. i know jeh johnson from homeland security is taking any increased threats very seriously. he's changing protocols. he's creating far more accountability so he knows. he's responding to any increased threat anywhere it happens in the country. >> my thanks to senator gillibrand for that. also new developments from the investigations into the san bernardino massacre, when a
violent husband and wife stormed into that holiday office event, gunning down 14 people. until now we've heard that syed farook's wife may have radicalized him. but now there is much more information that he was also a follower of isis's ideology. law enforcement sources telling cnn that farook was in touch with people being investigated by the fbi for international terrorism, reaching out to them by phone and social media. also his father is now speaking out. cnn's kyung lah joins us from san bernardino. >> reporter: his father is telling reporters he was a good kid, a quiet kid growing up, but as an adult, increasingly more religious and conservative and in the end, sharing an ideology with isis. sir, do you have a minute to speak with us? syed farook, father of gunman syed rizwan farook, driving away
from his home this morning. he says he and his son were divided on ideology. >> all pakistanis are coming from major cities and liberal people. he was going towards conservation. >> reporter: farook explains more of the divide in an extensive interview with an italian newspaper. he says his son was shy, too conservative, and his father became angry and he saw his son bought a gun. the eldhe woulelder farook says the ideology of al baghdadi and was obsessed with israel. he says the whole family was worried about the shift in his character. the relatives saying that change began before he met and married wife and fellow killer tashfeen
malik. they would meet first over the internet. farook seeking a religious woman. friends say they eventually met in person in saudi arabia. malik entered the u.s. last year on a fiance visa. she posted a pledge of allegiance to isis leader abu al baghdadi just before the massacre began. at the mosque where malik and farook were married in the u.s., members say they never saw her face. faro farook's father tells the italian newspaper he also never met her. a couple whose beliefs are coming into sharper focus. unknown what sparked the mass murder in the first place. the farook family has across the board expressed sympathy to the community, sorrow over what their relative did, and sorrow certainly growing in this community. you see here, poppy, this is a memorial.
it started out as one simple cross, a couple of flowers. it's just grown as this community grabless wipples with went through. >> thank you, kyung lah from san bernardino. next, how do you protect the nation from terrorism? will it require new sacrifices from all of us? we'll talk about it, ahead. i'm hacking your company. grabbing your data. stealing your customers' secrets. there's an army of us. relentlessly unpicking your patchwork of security. think you'll spot us? ♪ you haven't so far. the next wave of the internet requires the next wave of security. we're ready. are you? the way i see it,
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puentes is with me now. tom, if you wrote the plan, what would your top priority be? >> well, i think, poppy, the problem with at home is in a way i don't know what more they can really do at home, at least on our side. intelligence-gathering, the fbi, the joint terrorism task forces. we have a situation where, you know, the authorities just cannot read the minds of people that are out there. so it's not against the law to sympathize with isis or to support isis or believe in them or want to see them succeed and create a global caliphate. it is against the law to kill people. it is against the law to plan terror attacks to achieve that. and i think the problem is that there are some people like in this most recent attack in san bernardino where they just didn't know that this is what they were thinking and planning and arranging until it was too late. and i think that there's probably -- you know, we just
don't know. the fbi says it has 900 isis cases, one in every state. >> right. >> how do they know, even in the ones that aren't cases, what people are thinking and it when they're going to start amassing weapons? >> tom, on that point, we did see some curtailing of civil liberties after 9/11, an increase in domestic spying by the nsa. should we expect to see something of that sort or hear something like that from the president tonight? >> i think so, but i don't know if that's going to happen. the amount of demagoguery that went on with, as you call it, domestic spying, that metadata that was collected is not spying. it's just a collection of everybody's phone bills in one-stop shopping so that if an event happened and one of the 50 million phone calls a day that are made in the united states needs to be traced as to, you know, the network of people being called or the other phone numbers being called, you have a place to go get it. we have over 3,000 phone
providers. with that metadata gone and not being in the hands of nsa, you're really not going to be be able to backtrack, which is fine, but then -- >> tom, i want you to listen to this before i lose you. an important point, we've seen these lawmakers, some of them pushing to try to keep anyone who is on that no fly list or the terror watch list from getting a weapon. there was a bill in the senate just voted down on that this week. i wanted you to listen to what republican presidential candidate marco rubio said to our jake tapper today on "state of the union" but why he's against that. listen. >> president obama calls it insane that people on the no-fly list can walk in and buy explosive or a beggun. >> because a majority of the people on the no-fly list are people who basically have the same name as somebody else, who don't belong on the no-fly list.
former senator ted kennedy said he was on the no-fly list. journalists end up on the no-fly list. there's no due process or any way to get your name removed from it in a timely fashion. now they're having their second amendment right being impeded upon. >> is he right, tom? >> you know the sad part, poppy, is that in a way he is right, that there have been cases of people being put on that list that shouldn't have been, and it's very difficult to get off that list once you're on it. and i think that that's the only problem with it, is that you have a right being abridged potentially where there hasn't been due process. cnn's own drew griffin ended up on that no-fly list. a former scuexecutive in justic department ended up in the no-fly list. a 5-year-old boy, in one case a
few years ago. there are so many ways to get put on the list, nobody knows how you get off the list, how do you prove a negative, that you're not a bad guy. it's not just authorities putting people on the list. it's information coming in from intelligence and law enforcement services around the world, where they're reporting that a certain individual may be a threat, and they end up on these lists, and we don't know what led them to want to put somebody into our watch list. so it is a difficult process. it's much more difficult to get off a list than it is to get on it. >> okay. tom puentes, thank you for the perspective. we'll see what the president says tonight. i appreciate it, as always. up next, as we talk about the possibility of the war against isis escalating, an historic move this week from the pentagon. find out who else is being recruited for the fight. is never easy.
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but i've managed.e crohn's disease is tough, except that managing my symptoms was all i was doing. and when i finally told my doctor, he said humira is for adults like me who have tried other medications but still experience the symptoms of moderate to severe crohn's disease. and that in clinical studies, the majority of patients on humira saw significant symptom relief. and many achieved remission. humira can lower your ability to fight infections, including tuberculosis. serious, sometimes fatal infections and cancers, including lymphoma, have happened;
as have blood, liver, and nervous system problems, serious allergic reactions, and new or worsening heart failure. before treatment, get tested for tb. tell your doctor if you've been to areas where certain fungal infections are common, and if you've had tb, hepatitis b, are prone to infections, or have flu-like symptoms or sores. don't start humira if you have an infection. ask your gastroenterologist about humira. with humira, remission is possible. in an historic move for women across this country, the pentagon this week opened up all u.s. military combat roles to women. >> as long as they qualify and meet the standards, women will now be able to contribute to our mission in ways they could not before. they'll be allowed to drive tanks, fire mortars, and lead infantry soldiers into combat.
they'll be able to serve as army rangers and green berets, navy seals, infantry, air force parajumpers and everything else that was previously open only to men. >> noticeably not at carter's side, the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, general dunford. also senator john mccain issued a statement saying lawmakers would review the implications of allowing women in combat roles. certainly it's a historic move. i want to show you a clip from the cnn film "lady valor" showing how tough it is to become a lady navy seal. ♪ >> after that time, that full year, then you finally become a seal, and you're a budweiser,
this little thing right here is the seal time trident. >> joining me now is kristen beck, retired u.s. navy seal, now a democratic candidate for congress from maryland's 5th district. also with me now, senior fellow for the council on foreign relations, gayle lamone. she wrote the book "ashley's war." thank you both for being here. kristen, first of all, thank you from all of us for your service to this country. take me back to the moment when you were listening to ash carter. what was it like? >> it was great news. it's what america is all about, equality for everyone regardless of gender, sexual orientation, color, even your religion. none of that really matters as an american. it's who you are and what you're capable of doing. that's what america is about. it's about freedom and opportunity. >> you have unique perspective because when you were serving in
the seals as a seal, you were a man. >> yes. >> but you knew internally that inside you were a woman. did you think about this, that women -- that you wouldn't have been allowed to serve as a woman? >> that's a thought all the time. even right now, as a transgender person precluded from many things, there's over 50 states in our country right now that i could walk into my job and be fired on the spot, today. so i'm still fighting for equality for many people. this is one great step for all of us. >> gayle, let's talk about this. you wrote the book, obviously. you also wrote in the "l.a. times" this week that for years women served on the front lines sdpooit t despite the pentagon's ban on women in combat roles. talk to me about where we go from here, because obviously not everyone agrees with this. i was reading about a current seal who said, look,ed this put us in danger. where do we go from here?
>> i mean, i think right now the policy question has been largely decided. but the national conversation is very far behind. i think in part because we're so very distanced from, you know, the two wars that have been fought in america's name with less than half a percent of the country doing the actual fighting. and the reality is women have been in all kinds of front line roles for years. ashley's war is the story about a team of women on army ranger and navy seal missions back in 2010, 2011, 2012, these women have been out there. this is policy catching up with reality. >> i just sat down earlier today with democratic senator from new york kirsten gillibrand. let's listen to what she told me. >> i'm delighted. it makes sense. secretary carter really made the case that making sure all of our best and brightest can serve in all capacities is essential for the well-being of our country and the strength of our military and the strength of our country. this decision will add to our
military readiness. you shouldn't bar half the u.s. population from certain training and missions if they're qualified. hundreds of women have died in combat between afghanistan and iraq. they have been serving in combat. now the least we can do is give them the credit that they deserve, and the recognition that they deserve for participating in these very complex and dangerous missions. >> kristen, have you had any conversations with your fellow navy seals, former seals, about this? >> over the last few days, yes, it's been quite intense. the biggest thing we talk about is the politicians need to understand that the numbers won't be as high as they think, at least right away. it's going to take a little while to ramp this up. now, if they're not satisfied with the numbers who are passing, because there's many women out there who are qualified, just take it easy, take your time, because if you start changing the standards or you start doing -- messing with the gender normaling and everything else, it just doesn't work.
professional football players, i mean, come on, that's what special forces is. and i think everybody would agree with that. >> before i let you go, i want your take, both, on what you would like to hear from the president tonight. gayle, you've extensively studied the battle against terrorism. and kristen, you were on the front lines. gayle, you are just returned from turkey. what do you want to hear from the president tonight? >> yes, i was there with the ngo mercy corps, trying to help the refugees. look, the administration has for years really battled internally about what exactly to do built threat of first the civil war in syria and now the rise of isis. and there are not very many good opti options. what you can really do now, short of boots on the ground, which the president has already said he doesn't favor, is more of the same, more special operations forces, more looking for partners on the ground and telling them you will support them in the fight against isis. the question is what you do about the fate of president assad. that's always been the central question. >> absolutely.
kristen, your take from a military tactical perspective. >> i mean, a military tactical, i wouldn't want to hear our strategies and tactics should be kept secret. the thing i would like to talk about is set up a safe zone in the kurdish areas for all these refugees. first i want to take care of the refugees and it's a massive problem. so set up the safe zones. that's what i'd like to hear him talk about. >> all right. we'll be watching the president speaking in just about an hour. we'll carry that live for you on cnn. kristen, gale, thank you very much. appreciate it. up next, the number as the countdown to president obama's potentially historic oval office address continues in a moment. our heroes don't fly. they soar. ♪ and i'll rise up ♪ i'll rise like the day >> i don't see barriers. i see solutions. ♪ i'll rise unafraid >> i'll rise up. >> connecting with the communities along the way helps reestablish your faith in humanity. >> love you.
>> love you, too. ♪ and we'll rise up >> don't give up on yourself because you still worry. >> see the stars come out to celebrate the change makers. >> we all love to pay tribute and this is the way we really can. >> people living the work that they're doing every day. >> really, really inspiring. >> welcome to cnn heroes. >> please join me in honoring cnn hero -- >> there's no time to waste. >> the top ten cnn heroes of 2015. >> it's an honor to be recognized. >> this is an amazing honor. >> thank you. >> join anderson cooper for "cnn heroes: an all-star tribute" tonight at 9:00. how much protein does your dog food have?
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number. 410. that is the number of days that president obama has left in office. an hour from now, he will make his third oval office address since becoming president, a very rare event. he will lay out what the government is doing to keep americans safe from the threat of terrorism. 410 days, the amount of time left for him to fight isis. and no matter what strategy he presents tonight, the long-term fight will ultimately be in the hands of someone else in 410 days. our coverage continues after this break. our special coverage of the president's address hosted by our own wolf blitzer and the best political team on television, that is followed by the president's remarks live from the oval office at 8:00 p.m. eastern. thank you so much for joining us. good night. ♪
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but what's next? for all binge watchers. movie geeks. sports freaks. x1 from xfinity will change the way you experience tv. this is cnn breaking news. >> good evening, i'm wolf blitzer in washington. we want to welcome our viewers in the united states and around the world. we begin with breaking news. president obama's oval office address on terror. you're looking live at the white house where right now where president obama will speak in just about an hour at 8:00 p.m. eastern. the lectern already set up inside the oval office. a rare backdrop. he's only used for speeches twice