tv Andrea Mitchell Reports MSNBC December 19, 2014 9:00am-10:01am PST
yoplait. smooth, creamy, and craved by the whole family. >> right now on "andrea mitchell reports." they have definitive proof pyongyang was behind the sony hack attack. the question now is what will president obama do about it? no funny business. what began as a hollywood comedy turned into much more. some of the biggest stars and comedians are getting serious by a dangerous press depth by sony. >> so kim jung un gets to decide what movies we make. what do you make of that? >> i don't know how crazy they are so i'm going to ask you to stop talking about it. >> this is the wrong thing to
do. i hear in the film merrill streep is great as kim jung un. >> review of scandals finds major failures in the security net around the white house. >> there is always room for improvement and in this case i believe based on the recommend algzs that there a number of things we can and should do to improve the way they conduct business. >> no more rapport. stephen colbert as an all-star send off. >> if this is your first time tuning into the colbert report, i have terrible news. >> we begin with breaking news. the fbi named north korea in the
sony cyber attacks adding in the statement that north korea's actions were intended to inflict harm on a u.s. business and suppress the right of citizens to express themselves. such acts of intimidation fall outside the bounds of acceptable behavior. now the group guardians of peace released this message to sony executives. it's very wise that you made the decision to cancel the interview, the film of course. it will be useful for you. we have your private and sensitive data. we ensure security unless you make additional trouble. the threat ining statement there. the administration is considering a proportional response. they are expected to discuss the hack in the next hour at the white house. joining me now with much more is pete williams. pete, we have been hearing that white house officials, you reported at the white house and
fbi officials believed it was north korea. to those who they say how do they know, let's go to what you know they are reporting. >> sure, andre a. it's three things. it's interesting that this comes from the fbi. they don't say they suspect north korea and they are always guarded on words they used in cases like this. they say they now conclude that north korea was behind it. three things. number one, they say looking at the actual computer program that was embedded into sony to steal this stuff, the mal wear. it bears digital fingerprints and lines of code to programs they know were used by north korea in the half. that's the first. the second thing is the computers themselves. the computer hardware. traces back to known computer
addresses in north korea and thirdly the tools used were very similar to a known north korean attack on the south korean economic sector last year. south korean banks and media outlets which they attributed to north korea. that's the essence and you quoted the part i believe was tacked on by the white house. it's not fbi speak. it sounds like the administration where they say what north korea did falls outside the bounds of acceptable state behavior and that tees up and begs the question of what the administration will do in response. a couple of things to add here. there is no mention anywhere about any help. that is something that the cyber world has been buzzing about for the last couple of weeks. many experts who studied north korea thought the way this attack was carried out was beyond north korea's grasp.
fbi people have been saying the more they look at it, the more they think it was 134g that north korea could have had. it was not beyond its capacity. second is whether other countries were involved. there has been reporting that it was rooted through servers in other countries. officials say yes, that's true. at this point they don't say the north koreans were looking for a bigger band width. rooting it through servers in taiwan to carry this attack out. there is no mention of help from and infrastructure in other countries. >> pete williams with all the breaking news. we will be hearing from the president at 1:30 eastern time. we will be carrying that live here on msnbc with chris
matthews. as washington decides how to respond, members of the hollywood community are ripping into sony for pulling the film. george clooney said this is a silly comedy, but what it says about us is a lot. we have a responsibility to stand up against this. joining us is victor cha, senior adviser and international studies and author of the impossible state. crowd strike that hunts down hackers. if i may ask you first, there is a lot of speculation that because of north korea's lack of a real computer internet infrastructure both public and private, it didn't have the resources for this and they have been developing a cyber war battalion really, 3,000 strong and some located around the world. what can you tell us about that? >> i think you're right.
up until this hack of sony, what we have seen in prior attacks against south korea and media companies were of a much more primitive nature and many didn't believe that north korea even though it has this general bureau and within the bureau, they are focused on cyber capabilities they would carry out as sophisticated as they did against a soft target in sony. the other thing we have to remember is north korea is about building a symmetric capabilities. it's missiles and weapons of mass destruction and biochemical and an important staple in this portfolio of capabilities is cyber. they demonstrated that they have much more than an insignificant capability as they have done with their ballistic missiles and nuclear weapons over the
past or four years. >> we have another threat and a warning from the hackers to sony. do they continue to have access do you think inside sony or has sony been able to defend against further intrusion? >> it's difficult to say, but in many cases it's very common for the attackers to remain within organizations after remediation processes. the remediation takes in upwards of three months. it's difficult to say, but as mentioned earlier, there many soft targets out there and it's easy for the attackers to get in whether it's north korea or china or anyone else. even if they are kept out, doesn't mean they can't get back in. >> we had experiences with a number of the major investment banks and the white house have been tacked. the sony intrusion is so much more profound and what the being hackers have done is 10e67 more aggressive. can you speak to that?
>> if you look overtime what has taken place is really the ability to get in and steal data. we moved from that into this area of destruction. i think it's a bit of a watershed event. this is a very public display of what can take place. more than stealing data. i think it sends a wake up call to companies around the globe that although they are getting in, the next step is destroying data, perhaps even holding them hostage for ransom and it ushers in a new era we need to take seriously. >> you worked at the previous administration. what the statement said and pete williams was pointing out the legal language that was precise and there was a paragraph that was clearly from the more diplomatic or national security perspective saying what they had done was outside the bounds of acceptable state behavior. doesn't say an act of war.
how do you as a former nfc member calibrate what they were saying. what warning or indication is that of what the president and the white house may be considering? >> sure. i think you're right. the language at the end sounds very much like it came from the diplomatic side. that is one of the talking points that this administration used with regard to north korea. it's not referencing their cyber action, but the other actions that they have taken outside the bounds of normal state behavior, including counterfeiting of the $100 bill and running of drugs and other sorts of drugs and narcotics through diplomatic pouches. they are including their human rights abuses and there a variety of things. in terms of what they are thinking about now, they are obviously looking at the criminal part of that. trying to track down the
individuals responsible, but i imagine they are looking at counter measures, not just financial sanctions with which many have talked about. i would even venture to say that trying to push at north korean vulnerabilities. not just the regime, but the people who want it. >> is that even feasible given the technology. you know how shut down it is there. >> there about 12,000 or 17,000 people with internet access, obviously highly controlled. expanding the ability to connect might be seen as very threatening by the regime. this is the basic human rights violation that they don't have
access to information. providing that in some fashion might be the right. >> thanks to you as well. >> cuba immigration, the secret service has quite a list at the last news conference of the year. before he gets off to the ground for hawaii in a little over an hour. this is "andrea mitchell reports" only on msnbc.
political writer at the atlantic and mark, first to you. you and i covered north korea and the relationship with the u.s., but this is a whole new chapter. how can they respond? they say it's outside the bounds of acceptable state behavior, not an act of war. they can take covert steps as well as overt steps. >> you're right and i think a lot of the focus will be on returning fire as it were by trying to do signer steps in response to what the north koreans have done. today is historic. it's the first time the u.s. has formally fingered a foreign government in a cyber attack against the united states. it will call out, but as your previous guest pointed out, it's tricky because the country is already so heavily sanctioned, it's hard to see what economic steps we can take that would be
punishing and cyber retaliation would be difficult because this is not wired. most people in north korea except for the government elite had no access to the internet or to the digital sphere. our leverage is somewhat limited and it will be fascinating to hear how president obama is able to respond vigorous low when he has so few tools at his command. >> it's true that as your own colleagues have reported, the u.s. has done this to iran and other adversaries on the nuclear issues. it's not as though we have not used cyber weapons ourselves aggressively as well as defensively. what about the political fallout? the president has this breakthrough on cuba which is politically toxic in florida and other places and considered a major positive sign of real
engagement and non-lame duckness and here we are on the defense. >> that's a real tension for the president and something he is going to be asked about. his temptation in this press conference will be to take a victory lap after seen as a good month for him. after the election results, there was a come back for the white house in things like the cuba deal. the north korea development had especially the comments about how weak it makes us look. the actor here was sony, but the way they caved and knuckled under to this act from a totalitarian regime, how does that make us look in terms of our ability to confront these rogue international actors, and as mark was saying there was not a lot we can do. north korea knows they are waging a symmetrical warfare. it will be interesting to see what sort of rhetorical posture
they take against that. >> clearly he wants to talk about the economy. there positive signs. what does he have to say about the other domestic issues and now we learn that the state of the union is officially going to be on january 20th. >> as molly said, it has been taking north cocoa rhea out of it for a good period for him and economically for some reasons that continue to unfold. the declining price of gasoline is making life better and easier for some of these little income american that is the president puts at the top top of his list of concerns and thrown vladimir putin on his heels after several months when he appeared to have the u.s. and the west on the defensive. putin is facing a deep recession in russia that could call into question a lot of his aggression and ukraine and crimea.
dan put out a lengthy memo to all of us in the press that basically listed a number of achievements that began with the economy and went through court appointments and advances on immigration and the fact that they are functioning well. i think it will largely be a victory lap even at the start of it will be understandably consumed by north korea. >> we will all be watching and this is going to be a very interesting day. the get away day for the president and of course of celebrities, speaking of getaways, they joined stephen colbert as he ended a nine-year run remaining in character all the while. that's pretty extraordinary as the faux right wing talk show host and pundit it was pure comedy gold beginning with his first show when he introduced
the word truthiness. jon stewart packed the national mall with 215,000 members of the colbert nation with the rally to restore sanity and or fear. who better to teach them about money while raising money for his own super pac. a sitting president took over the show and former secretary of states were willing to take part in the fun. what a run. colbert will reappear presumably as himself when he takes over david letterman's chair on the late show. last night was all about the star studded send off. >> we'll meet again ♪ ♪ don't know where, don't know when ♪ ♪ but -- ♪
getting a warm welcome, a real embrace from john kerry who had just flown back and landed there from london. >> i am no fan of the cuban government. if anyone thinks i suffered from stockholm syndrome, they are wrong. >> well, our calculation and you will hear it from the president, this change of policy is geared to change. first to you, a lot of celebrating in havana and how quickly do you think things might be changing? we know an assistant secretary of state will go next month. >> yeah, people don't know that and they are excited about all
of the changes that have been talked about. there is no controversy as you said. the people as we talked to those in old havana say it can only be good and good for economic change. they are really suffering. they have no idea when the changes are going to happen. they are excited at the prospect that something could change dramatically and finally. >> alan gomez, some say it's generational and some people that we interviewed with the older members of the exile community do not want to go back. others do want to go to cuba even though they are against the regime. they want to see what it's like. >> exactly. >> for the younger generations, cuba is something you heard about in stories. you read about it and saw black and white pictures of your parents over there. it's this curiosity. something you are wondering that you have never seen. for them i think they also
didn't experience the things their parents experienced. the repression and being put in prison and having property taken away. for them they look at it more objectively and say maybe there is a different approach. the parents lived it firsthand and it's something that is difficult to swallow. i was talking to a lot of them this morning and they are shaking their heads wondering how this could have happened. >> you have a whole long list of american corporations who are pushing to get in and including major league baseball. they want to get in and do deals. alan, what about the possibilities of lawsuits and getting their homes back? >> you listed off a bunch of the things that will make this a difficult transition. the embargo is still there. there is a strong limit as to what can happen. they open a dealership in havana, but it seems there openings. folks and lawyers who do
business in cuba, their phones are ringing off the hook to figure out how much they can get in there and the question you asked about what to do about all the property that was taken from cubans before they came over to the united states, as we reestablished the relations and as the talks began, i can guarantee that a lot of them will be pressing to ask about that and figure out how to start that process and see if they can reclaim the property. a long shot, but they will be asking. >> absolutely. thank you both so much. and up next, inside the secret service report. you are watching "andrea mitchell reports" only on msnbc. the holiday season is here, which means it's time for the volkswagen sign-then-drive event. for practically just your signature, you could drive home for the holidays in a german-engineered volkswagen. like the sporty, advanced new jetta... and the 2015 motor trend car of the year all-new golf. if you're wishing for a new volkswagen this season...
series of scandals capped by the army intruder who was armed who got all the way into the residents on september 19th before being taken down. as homeland security secretary jeh johnson told me yesterday. fixing the problem will take time. >> how easily is it fixable? >> this is not something based on the recommendations i have seen that can change overnight. having said that, acting director clancy has taken a number of steps to enhance security around the white house compound and do a number of other things that are positive. we are encouraging him to continue with that, but there more fundamental systemic issues with the secret service they think mead to be address and that cannot be addressed overnight. >> "washington post" reporter broke the story about the white house secret service breech. from your read of this report, are they getting at the really serious problems that need to be fixed?
>> this is a pretty deep report for 45 days. i have to say they really looked at a series of things that have been troubling the service for a while and sources of ours have identified several months ago. the lack of training and the canceled training and employees who are stretched so thin they are basically working every other day off. many they say something that would have been sort of just anti-thetical to everything about the secret service. they said we need somebody from outside the service to run it. >> what do you think about that? you know from experience, clancy has a good rapport with the president and has a great
reputation. he used to work at this company at a level far above mine, but he was in charge of security for comcast and a lot of experience as the leader of the president's personal detail. >> he has a lot of help with the rank and file as well. not only that they were elated to come back, but what the panel hits on and many of our sources have shared with us, once you have been inside the service, there personalities and intrigue issues and rivalries and while he has great respect, he is described as someone who is not confrontational and wants things to be happy and upward moving, onward moving. he may not be the person to rock this boat. >> thank you so much, carol. joining me now for more about
this, two experts. elijah cummings who let this investigation and the secret service agent. congressman, is congress going to put up the money? they are talking about 80 more agents, 200 more officers. a lot more appropriations and we are already hearing complaints on the republican side. >> if congress believes that the secret service needs the money to do the job it has to do, we will find a way to do that. fortunately in our committee, we have a bipartisan effort and we are committed to making sure that the organization is all it is supposed to be. i expect we will be able to do that. >> dan, where do you come down as someone in the service with whether or not an outsider or someone like clancy can shake it up. >> i think the executive summary from the report that claims that an outsider from the service
would be better is accurate, but if huh to pick someone from the inside for the transition, as an interim director, there is no finer person in my experience and joe clancy. i think carol has great sources. i dispute the fact that he is not confrontational and i don't mean that as a pejorative. i have been on the receiving end and when he needs to fix it, we will fix it. >> it's a question of leadership style indeed. what about the revelation that the officer his as little as 25 minutes of annual training? that was shocking. >> think about that. you get a coffee break. that's probably your cumulative time for the week on the show. 25 minutes. these are the men and women who were standing between the leader of the free world and a potential assassin or a group of them. this has been a problem in the secret service and in my experience throughout federal law enforcement when they triage
their needs in a scarce resources environment, training always behinds up at the bottom. >> training will go a long way towards morale. they did a good job looking at that. a lot of them are doing an insane job standing around in the white house or whatever. that can lead to a culture that is not healthy for morale. they talked in that report about making sure that they elevated the people from within. and so look them up so they can see and have hope to rise up from a uniform officer to a special agent. all of those things are very important. >> the director, the acting director joe clancy talked to brian williams about a month ago about the question of whether anner or outsider should take
charge. >> we don't have time to chain someone in this role. you have to have someone with history who knows where we need to go in the future. >> congressman, going forward, you have a tough report demanding a lot of change. is this another partisan fight or do you think this is something you will be able to agree on? >> there will be folks who want to make it a partisan fight. hopefully we will keep it at the high level it should be on. that is the protection of the president and the other protecteeings of the secret service. the way this hospital was written, it was thorough and they did a good job to have only two months to do it. i think it will lead us to a place where we will not be on common ground, but move to higher ground. nobody wants to think we could have taken this for a moment and not address the issues that the
report lists. >> and dan, the bottom line, is the fertile family safe? >> i think so. i have no doubt. i talked to the first family and i know they feel comfortable with mr. clancy. he is doing a great job. based upon the report, they believe that somebody needs to come from the outside because apparently they feel a lot of people have to be fired. there have to be a lot of drastic changes. i agree that it might be better to have somebody from the outside come in. >> and what about morale during this transitional phase. what are your former colleagues telling you? >> there is a lot of loyalty tow joe clancy. his reputation is peerless in the secret service. no no one like him. morale improved a bit, but i'm not going to spin your wheels. the calls i get are not what i
got years ago when they consider themselves the premier agency in the country. it will take a while to build back up. >> it's critical that we do it. thank you. good to see you both. up next, happy holidays to you. we have a heart breaking story of a young girl married off by her father by desperation. carry simmons's extraordinary series continues on andrea mitchell reports only on msnbc.
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overwhelming of challenges. carry simmons reports from london. >> we have been talking about the pressures that the syrian families are under. what's really striking when you spend substantial time with them in particular is the weight that women are having to bear because often the men in the family are away fighting or they have been killed. also because cultural attitudes territories women are magnified with the pressure syrian refugees are under. >> this girl is 13 years old. in syria, two uncles. her father's brothers were executed. they show me around their tent. this is the kitchen. >> this is for your whole family. you and your wife and seven children. this is the food. this is your other room. >> they had syria in such panic, they left food on the table. now in lebanon, they have almost
nothing. desperately poor with just 30 $ a week. one daughter has a hole in her heart, but the family can't afford the operation. that's that is why they said a year ago she was married to a man in his 40s. >> how old was she when she got married? >> 12 years old. >> she's young. >> yes. >> the family was desperate. >> it saves you money. >> yes. >> she had little choice. >> were you happy to get married? >> not too much? >> a little. >> marriage will likely mean many children even in times of hardship. along the syrian border, this girl is pregnant. her husband is a rebel fighter. she is hoping he might make it back for the birth. another mom is hoping her fourth child survives. he has been born two months premature. for now she looks after her
three older children in a tent by the side of the road. it's too far and too ex3e7bsive to visit the hospital where her new baby boy is in care. a few months later in june, terrible news. >> were you able to hold him at all? >> no. >> you were never able to hold him? >> only after he died, she said. >> i'm very sorry. >> there is better news for mohamed. a healthy baby boy. by november she is feeding him solids. there is no other option. >> she doesn't have enough milk for him and they had to be by the stove to keep warm. >> amid so much pape, he represents hope. he will help replace all those killed, his mother said, day she
hopes he will fight for a free syria. >> the woman you saw in the report didn't say quite as much, but certainly left us with the impression that she didn't want to be married. it isn't just the use of rape or abuse of conflicts, it's clearly also just basic discrimination and a lack of child care, help, and we will be talking about that next week in terms of the difficulties of getting education for children. a lack of care for women who are pregnant and giving birth. what is important about this and again and again we have been able to talk with the women in those families a woman confided in us that she was really dissatisfied with the support that her husband was giving the
family. in other cases we had to film and while a woman's husband was away and she was worried about the effects that it would have if they saw what she was doing because we had to be careful in building a connection with the syrian refugees that we have been talking to in documenting their lives. it made a huge difference in being able to report on exactly what is going on for these families. >> the nbc original series, faces of war next week here on "andrea mitchell reports." an hour away from the president's end of the year news conference. chris matthews will be anchoring the special report: coming up. theraflu severe cold doesn't treat chest congestion. really? new alka-seltzer plus day powder rushes relief to your
as we away wait the president's news conference in north korea and cuba and the economy, kelly o'donnell is at the white house. he has so many issues to address. this north korea naming of north korea by the fbi is so significant because there is a lot of options that he can't or won't talk about, but it puts the united states in a very difficult situation. >> and pressure on the president certainly to have a response. the fbi put the culpability on north korea and the pressure on the white house to decide how it will act even if he can't disclose that. he will be questioned about that topic. the senior white house aides open up with initial remarks to talk about the year that has gone by. he will talk about the economy. an area where they see positive growth. he will check the box where he
wants to talk about it because many of the questions deal with more immigration to the sony hack. it puts the president in a chance to lay out how he wants 2014 to be remembered and then the questioning begins and we will see what news is committed during that hour or so when the president is taking questions. one of the challenges will be just off the fbi briefing. how much can the president say and what will he say? we heard from the committee chairman talking about the u.s. must respond and criticizing the administration for not acting quickly enough, talking about north korea attacking not only the infrastructure, but the values. expect the president to be questioned on those topics and what next steps happen with cuba. he will have to tango with a republican congress over how to lift an embargo and how to take the next steps. we have seen a lot of resistance from certain republicans on those topics. at the same time acknowledging
that the president has running room to make these changes in how he deals with cuba and how the u.s. will have a relationship with the neighbor to the south going forward. it will be an eventful year and news conference. the briefing room is packed. it's one of the full attendance days where every organization is here in extra numbers, including myself here to help out. it's one of the days where before the family heads off to hawaii, it really is a chance to look at what has the year been for this white house which in many ways has been a tumultuous year and looking ahead to 2015 in a different congress that he will be dealing with when he gets back in january. >> in fact you are going to be in the house chamber for the state of the union and we know today speaker boehner announced it will be january 20th which is a significant day in the presidency and the anniversary of him being sworn in. that will be a big day as well.
we will have him teeing it up heading off for vacation ask you later. that does it for us for this edition of "andrea mitchell reports." i'm going to take a few days off to celebrate the holiday with family. merry christmas and happy hanukkah to all of you. i wish you the very, very best for the holiday. follow us online on facebook and on twitter@mitchell reports. my colleague joins us with what's coming up next. merry christmas. >> happy holidays and i'm glad you are the busiest woman in the business. congratulations on the days off. we have a lot ahead. you heard the preview of the president's remarks coming up. big annual address and we will have insiders from the administration talking about all of the big issues of the day he is likely to confront. that will begin our special event coverage leading up to this press conference. i will be right back.
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>> welcome to our live coverage as we await the end of year news conference. he will be speaking to reporters at 1:30 eastern. one big topic for the hacking attack on sony. we will have much more and a look ahead to the other questions the president could face in the live report from the white house. another major story they are confronting, the ongoing fallout in pakistan. they are going after militants after the taliban massacred students and teachers in the school. more than 100 militants are being killed since tuesday's attacks in the army