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CONNECT THE WORLD
Bob Woodward's "Fear" Available to the Public Today; Trump Tweets on Russia on 9/11 Anniversary; Trump Approval Down Six Points in Last Month; Hurricane Florence Heading Towards U.S. 1,000 Kilometers Wide; UN Security Council Meeting on Idlib; PLO Accuses U.S. of Blindly Executing Israel's Wish List; New Details on the Dallas Police Shooting. Aired 11-12p ET
Aired September 11, 2018 - 11:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[11:00:00] BECKY ANDERSON, CNN HOST: Hello and welcome. You're watching CONNECT THE WORLD. I'm Becky Anderson in Abu Dhabi.
17 years ago, on this date the world changed. We stood in horror as we watched planes crash into the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, as our
perception of terrorism was forever altered. U.S. President Donald Trump chose to mark the September 11th anniversary by going to a place sometimes
forgotten in the 9/11 memorials, Shanksville, Pennsylvania. That is where United Airlines flight 93 crashed after passengers on that plane fought
back against Al-Qaeda hijackers.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: On September 11th, 2001, a band of brave patriots turned the tide on our nation's enemies and joined
the immortal ranks of American heroes. At this memorial on this sacred earth, in the field beyond this wall, and in the skies above our heads, we
remember the moment when America fought back.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Well as he headed to the 9/11 memorial in Pennsylvania, President Trump left behind a White House in turmoil. He still does not
know who wrote the scathing "New York Times" op-ed last week claiming to help undermine some of the President's policies. The White House Press
Secretary faced questions about it on Monday. Even having to answer whether Vice President Mike Pence and others would be given a lie detector
Then there is Bob Woodward's book which details numerous instances of chaos in the West Wing. "Fear, Trump in the White House" available to the public
today. CNN's political director, David Chalian, joining us from Washington. And before we get on to some of the clouds as it were above
Washington, a very Presidential performance from the commander-in-chief on what is this 9/11 anniversary -- David.
DAVID CHALIAN, CNN POLITICAL DIRECTOR: Yes. Commemorating this anniversary here in the states, of course, Becky, has fallen to sort of
every President's responsibility each year. And while Donald Trump is known perhaps for breaking with traditions, this is one he has fully
embraced. You know, I think we forget with the controversy surrounding the President or the way in which he tweets or holds public rallies we forget
perhaps that he has this ability also to hit a different note as he did this morning, so appropriately so, in solemn tones with anecdotes from that
day, with real remembrances, and able to lead the nation through what each year is a very important reminder. Not just of the attack itself, but of
the sacrifice of those who really went into harm's way on that day and that is something that we remember and commemorate each and every year.
ANDERSON: Yes. David, you're absolutely right. On this the 17th anniversary of the deadliest act of , terrorism in American history and as
Chris Cillizza, one of our colleagues, described a monster hurricane bearing down on the east coast, it was the President of the United States
waking up this morning and tweeting this. We have found nothing to show collusion between President Trump and Russia. Absolutely zero. But every
day we get more documentation showing collusion between the FBI and DOJ, the Hillary campaign and foreign spies and Russians. Incredible, he said.
I guess he couldn't help himself, right?
CHALIAN: Yes. He's quoting there from a Fox News segment I believe. He's quoting Lou Dobbs and others, that were on a segment he was watching. And
even on, you know, this day of commemorating the 9/11 anniversary, the President, obviously, still woke up this morning and was able to see
something on television as he does almost each and every morning he wants to put out to his tens of millions of Twitter followers to help his cause
and push his case. That he believes the entire investigation into potential coordination between the Trump campaign and the Russians to
interfere in the 2016 U.S. election, that he thinks that's totally misguided and a hoax.
[11:05:00] ANDERSON: Bob Woodward's book is out today as far as I understand it there have been some seven print runs already. A much-
anticipated look as far as Woodward is concerned at life in the Oval Office and also, of course, this op-ed last week out of "The New York Times."
David, there is evidence there is chaos in the White House is impacting the President's image. A brand-new CNN/SSRS poll puts the President's approval
rating at 36 percent, down 6 points from last month. The poll finds that independents really abandoning the President and just 32 percent of those
surveyed find the President trustworthy. How big a deal are President Trump's numbers in terms of what are these upcoming midterm elections?
CHALIAN: That's a really good question, Becky. We in the history as you look back at midterm elections, there is a very strong correlation between
the President's approval rating and how his party performance in that midterm elections. In the President is at the lowest point at this point
in his presidency, he's below all of his predecessors at 36 percent at this September point of the second year. So, this does not bode well for his
party at all. His numbers are going in the wrong direction for Republicans at precisely the wrong moment.
You noted his overall approval there, 36 percent, which is near a record low for him, one point above the record low, we have in CNN polling. But
as you noted independents I think is even a more stark number. He went down 16 points among independent voters from last month to this month.
He's now at 31 percent approval among independents and that is an all-time low among independents in CNN polling.
ANDERSON: David, pleasure having you on board, sir, out of Washington today, as we've been describing, we're talking politics. But also, an
incredibly important day to remembers those who lost their lives 17 years ago on this 9/11. Thank you, David.
ANDERSON: Well, his name is not on the ballot in November, but make no mistake, Donald Trump will have a big impact on these crucial midterm
elections which are widely considered a referendum on his leadership. As part of our special coverage this week, CNN's Martin Savidge is
crisscrossing America to find out whether people who put Mr. Trump in the White House still support him nearly two years on. Have a look at this.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Next President of the United States, Donald J. Trump.
MARTIN SAVIDGE, CNN ANCHOR AND CORRESPONDENT: Donald Trump became President not by winning in the big cities people know, but by winning in
the places many people know little about, the America in between the big cities, middle America. the heartland. What people here call the
Where people tell you they work hard, play by the rules, have faith in God and rely on their neighbors. Statistically these Americans are older, more
often white, less often college graduates. The only thing globalization did for them, they'll tell you is shut down the local factory. And as
America's economy became more tech and service focused and its population more diverse and morally accepting, these Americans say they felt left
behind, politically ignored, almost unwanted.
RICK GREEN, IRON WORKER: The core foundation of our country is slipping away.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I mean it got to a point where I did not like the direction my country was going.
SAVIDGE (voice-over): Then came Donald Trump.
TRUMP: I love all the people of our country.
SAVIDGE: Trump, the New York City billionaire, had the remarkable ability to relate with this very dissatisfied group.
LORA DILLEY, SAFETY COORDINATOR: He seemed like he had the workers, the blue-collar workers, in his radar for helping them out.
SAVIDGE: They liked he was a businessman, his tough stance on immigration.
MARIANO RODRIGUEZ, TRUMP SUPPORTER: It's not that I'm opposed to people coming over, but what I want them is to come over legally.
SAVIDGE: They liked he was pro-guns and anti-abortion rights. They liked he supported appointing conservative judges and his pledge to put America
first. They loved he was not a politician. Not part of what they see as the dysfunction of Washington.
ROBERT HILDEBRAND, MANCHESTER, OHIO MAYOR: Men in overalls built this country, the men in suits have destroyed it.
SAVIDGE (on camera): But he is a man in a suit.
HILDEBRAND: But he has touched the working people. He has stood up for the working people.
SAVIDGE: But what about now after the Russia investigation, after the scandals, after the turmoil and turnover and all those tweets, how are
these voters feeling? Satisfied but exhausted.
(voice-over): They see a President who has delivered on many of his promises, tax reform, a strong economy, who ended the Paris environmental
accord, the Iran nuclear deal and cracked down on immigration.
JASON NEIGHBOR, TRUMP SUPPORTER: I think he's exactly what I voted for. We wanted a little bit of a change.
SAVIDGE: They would like less turmoil. But the Russia investigation most blame on Democrats and Trump's opponents.
[11:10:00] Considering the whole thing a --
VINCENTE JAVIER, TRUMP SUPPORTER: Political witch hunt from the get-go. To be honest, it's a disgrace.
SAVIDGE: As for the two women who were paid hush money after alleged affairs these voters say that they're willing to accept some bad in the man
in exchange for the good they see in his policies.
(on camera): Does it bother you that if our President is not always truthful?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Not really.
SAVIDGE: They do have advice for the President.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I wish he wouldn't tweet.
SAVIDGE: They're not always fans of his tweeting. Believing it distracts from his accomplishments and could suggests a President who could be
vindictive, compulsive, off balance. There is a sense of fatigue with the political brawling.
KURT MUELLER, VIETNAM VETERAN: I think the man has a lot of capabilities, but sometimes he just lets his mouth overload sometimes and it's very
SAVIDGE: Trump voters are tired of being blamed for being like Trump simply because they voted for Trump.
DR. WAGAS KHAN, TRUMP VOTER: I had to receive comments like, oh, I never knew you were a racist, you're anti-Islamic, you're a traitor.
SAVIDGE: Many are swing voters who voted for President Obama not once but twice. There's another "r" word that comes up in our conversations,
respect. Trump voters remain bothered that those who didn't vote for the President, have never seemed to accept that he won. Do you think he's
being treated fairly?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think it's awful.
SAVIDGE: In their minds if you don't respect this President, you don't respect the people who voted for him and it was feelings of disregard and
being ignored that turned them to Trump. And now, many still feel Trump was not just the right choice, but the only choice.
(on camera): How is he doing?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Fantastic, great.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Better than I would have ever dreamt. I mean that sincerely.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Oh, yes.
SAVIDGE: Show of hands who would vote the same?
ANDERSON: Right now, this hour, a natural disaster in the making. A monster hurricane tearing head on towards tens of millions of Americans.
And it's forecast to get even stronger. We've got to get to you the view from space to show you what an absolute beast of a storm Florence really
is. Stretching almost 1,000 kilometers, that's 600 miles, from side to side. I want to get you closer for a sense of the roaring speed here.
We're talking winds as fast as race cars, more than 200 kilometers per hour. All that zeroing in on America's east coast where right now a
million people are being told to get out of the way immediately.
Let's get you into the danger zone now. CNN's Nick Valencia on the ground in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina for us. Nick, the evacuation order
stretching the length of two states, North and South Carolina -- where you are -- all the way up to Virginia. People in the red zones ordered to
leave everything behind, but where exactly do they go? What might they return to, sir?
NICK VALENCIA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: This is a massive storm, no doubt, and there are evacuation shelters here, put in place by the local emergency
management teams, the mayor as well. They're asking people to go west, go inland, to try to get away from this storm that is expected to make
landfall sometime Thursday night into the Friday morning hours here in the United States.
You mentioned evacuations. Mandatory evacuations are in place here starting at the top of the hour, 12:00 p.m. eastern. But every time you
have those evacuation orders you do have people that want to stick it out. They want to stay. We're joined by some locals here. Come on in here.
We're joined by some locals here. Candice, Kaylee, Laura and Jackson, you guys are deciding to stick out the storm, why?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I thought we prepared, very well prepared for this one that's coming.
VALENCIA: What makes you confident knowing that local officials, the governor, are saying this is such a wide storm. They're comparing it to
past deadly storms, what makes you sure you're going to be able to manage this?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We've been here for a couple storms and kind of rode things out and it's been OK.
VALENCIA: And you say you keep track of the euro models, you keep track of the weather models. You're very in tune, you watch the news. You hear the
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes.
VALENCIA: But this is still not enough to make you leave?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No. And I think probably because I have been keeping up with so many of them. I mean, we had made reservations in Florence for
a hotel should we need to go. But as we've watched it going on we canceled the reservations. Just trying to watch all the different apps and the
different weather men giving us meteorologist telling us what they're thinking is going to happen and what turn it may take. And you know, we
felt like we prepared well for it.
VALENCIA: I'm interested really quick in hearing what you have to say, Kaylee. Because your hearing and then ask these questions. What do you
think? I mean, are you nervous at all or you think mom's got this?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE CHILD: I'm not nervous. I think they got this.
VALENCIA: Yes. All right. Well, we hope they have it for you. We hope that you guys are safe. This is some serious stuff here, guys. I know
it's beautiful behind me, looks gorgeous here today. The sun is out. The clouds are starting to form a little bit more but this is expected to be a
very severe storm and expect to start forming and showing its presence here in the next 24 hours -- Becky.
[11:15:00] ANDERSON: Beautiful. Beautiful part of the world, Nick. Thank you for that. Stay safe, mate.
Let me show you some really incredible video. You are looking at the very moment a small plane burst through into the eye of the storm. You can see
the huge towers of clouds around it. It is as important as it is beautiful. A well-defined eye means a well-organized storm, which means
power, which means danger. Let's bring in CNN weather extraordinaire Chad Myers to find out why. Chad, just explain more, if you will.
CHAD MYERS, CNN METEOROLOGIST: The eye itself is the barrier between the potential dry air around this storm and the eye itself. So, the dry air
can't intrude into the eye and the eye is breathing. I mean the air is going up and the air is going down and the middle of the eye is going down
and the eyewalls are going up and this is an intense -- this is an engine.
They've said that one hurricane is many, many Tsar Bombas all at one time, which is the biggest problem that Russia has ever had. This was Russia,
the Soviet Union. But anyway, this whole thing, this has so much power to it that when it breathes, when it gets its energy from this 85-degree, 30
centigrade temperature water that's when it gets bigger and bigger and bigger. So, right now we are at 215 kilometers per hour, gusts to 260.
But the waves and wind will come onshore probably Friday morning with a swell, we call it storm surge. This swell could be 6 meters high. So, any
building that's not 6 meters above the ocean or on stilts 6 meters above the dirt, is going to get washed away. So, will the people that are below
That's why there's so many people evacuating right now because this is not yet a super typhoon but forecast to be 150 miles per hour and that's right
at the threshold of a category 4, almost 5, you need to be six miles per hour more, ten kilometers more per hour, but that's close enough that this
swell, this surge, is going to smash on shore in North Carolina -- Becky.
ANDERSON: Yes. Well let's hope everybody is safe. Those residents with Nick saying they've got this one, they seem to have the experience watching
experts like you minute by minute, Chad, and keeping an eye on the apps that we all now have on our phones as well. I do hope that they are right
on this one. All right, Chad, thank you.
Weather satellites putting in serious overtime right now as you can imagine. They are keeping a keen eye on a super typhoon that is picking up
speed and power before smashing its way into Asia with winds forecast to reach 230 kilometers per hour. It's expected to hit the Philippines on
Wednesday evening, then move on towards Hong Kong, Taiwan and the Chinese mainland through Friday.
Stick with us for the latest on this weather news. Still to come tonight, on this show, the U.N. warning the battle for Idlib could provoke the worst
humanitarian catastrophe of the 21st century. We'll have a live report from Damascus in Syria for you after this.
[11:20:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
ANDERSON: Well at this hour, the United Nations Security Council meeting on the dire situation in Idlib in Syria, the last rebel stronghold in what
is this raw war-ravaged country. These are live pictures from inside the chamber where Russia is briefing the world body on the outcome of the talks
it held with Iran and Turkey over the fate of the northern province. Where fighting has been intensifying, causing more than 30,000 people to flee
their homes in just the past week alone.
CNN's Frederik Pleitgen is following the situation in Idlib from Syria's capital of Damascus and he joins me now. While the diplomats talk in the
safety of the chamber in New York, Fred, what is the picture for people on the ground as far as you understand it?
FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, it certainly seems like things are shaping up there in Idlib province. And if
you look at some of the things that have happened, Becky, over the past 24 hours, maybe 48 hours, and you look where a lot of these air strikes took
place, where a lot of the fighting has taking place, there in and around Idlib province, it's really in many places inside that province a very much
concentrated in the south of Idlib province. That's where a lot of the air strikes took place. That's where, for instance, the opposition has said
that some of the cross-border shelling took place as well. The Syrian government for its part, as well.
So, it's hit some villages in northern Hama which is part of that greater area, it's not Idlib province, but it's just to the south of it. Some
parts of that also held by opposition forces. There's been shell from rebels and people killed on the ground on the government side as well.
So, if indeed, there is some sort of large offensive, if it does kick off, that could be one of the places where it happens. Certainly, there is a
lot of Syrian armor around there and that certainly is right now where a lot of that fighting seems to be concentrated.
However, the message that we're getting here in Damascus, is as long as things have not kicked off, as long as wheels have not been set in motion,
there does still seem to be room for some sort of negotiations for talks or for any other sort of diplomacy. We might be seeing that right now there
in New York. But certainly, by the minute, Becky, it seems as though the chances of averting an opposition are getting dimmer -- Becky.
ANDERSON: Fred is in Damascus, my colleague Clarissa Ward also closely monitoring the developments from Idlib. She has the story of a rescue
worker there -- Clarissa.
CLARISSA WARD, CNN CHIEF INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: That's right, Becky. As you heard from Fred, the regime is saying that the all-out offensive on
Idlib has not yet begun. But from what we have seen and from the story that you're about to see it's clear the people of Idlib are already
suffering. Take a look.
WARD (voice-over): Rescue worker, Annas Al Deah (ph), is shooting the aftermath of an air strike.
Moments later more strikes here, this time Annas is the victim.
His camera is still rolling, revealing serious injuries to his legs.
Guys, guys, please come get me, he calls out to his fellow rescue workers. I can't move.
The men try to drag him to safety, without so much as a stretcher it is hard work. Another strike lands, pinning them to the ground. And another.
(BOMBS GO OFF)
They call for backup.
[11:25:00] Scenes like this are playing out across Idlib as regime forces begin an operation to take back the last rebel held province, raising the
specter of a blood bath. Russia provides most of the air power and claims that it only targets terrorists. An assertion that is contradicted by
facts on the ground.
Here a woman's head pokes up through the rubble still moving. Rescue workers rush to free her from beneath the concrete. Eventually they
succeed, but it's not clear if she survives.
Annas was lucky, he made it safely to a hospital, though his injuries are serious.
They are targeting innocent civilians, he says, they're trying to kill as many of us as possible.
In spite of the risks some of those civilians are taking to the streets again, in scenes reminiscent of the early days of the protest movement
against President Bashar al-Assad. Idlib, we are with you until death, they chant. They may well be the last words of this uprising.
WARD: Now, Becky, according to the U.N., some 30,000 people have already been displaced in Idlib. That's just in the last week during this course
of uptick in strikes that we've seen in that province. There are some 3 million civilians living in Idlib so you can imagine the capacity for
bloodshed and for disaster if this offensive continues, if it, indeed, intensifies. The U.N. saying this could be the worst humanitarian
catastrophe in history -- Becky.
ANDERSON: Clarissa is our chief international correspondent out of London today, thank you.
This is CONNECT THE WORLD. Coming up, Palestinians accuse the Trump administration of trying to liquidate their cause after a dramatic move in
Washington. We'll get reaction from a key Palestinian diplomat after this.
[11:30:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
ANDERSON: You're watching CNN. This is CONNECT THE WORLD. I'm Becky Anderson in the UAE for you. Welcome back.
Palestinian leaders have just filed a new complaint against Israel at the international Criminal Court. Rebuffing a warning from the United States
not to go that route as bullying and blackmail. U.S. national security adviser, John Bolton, launched a blistering attack on the ICC yesterday
calling it illegitimate, ineffective and outright dangerous. He criticized Palestinian efforts to have Israel prosecuted there for alleged war crimes,
saying that's part of the reason the U.S. is closing a Palestinian diplomatic mission.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOHN BOLTON, U.S. NATIONAL SECURITY ADVISOR: The United States will always stand with our friend and ally Israel. And today reflecting congressional
concern with Palestinian attempts to prompt an ICC investigation of Israel. The Department of State will announce the closure of the Palestine
Liberation Organization office here in Washington, D.C.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: This may, though, have some pretty counterintuitive outcomes for everyone involved. Let's bring in Sam Kiley to break that down for us and
for some context. I think you and I were discussing for something like 19 years covering the Israeli/Palestinian issue, two long stints for broadcast
news organizations and print organizations in the region. What do you make of what's going on at present?
SAM KILEY, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, it could go any number of directions, but I think that one of the challenges from the
U.S./Netanyahu position is that -- and they haven't made this threat yet but they did make it last year -- is the Palestinian Authority could
threaten to dissolve itself. Especially if its source of funding which is in large part drawn from the United States. That has been suspended, at
least funding that goes via the United Nations, not that they're P.A. funding directly. But the P.A. is also funded directly by the European
The European Union, a lot of its members are very uncomfortable that they feel that their taxpayers are effectively perpetuating the non-peace talks,
the status quo, the discussions or non-discussions over a two-state solution, allowing both sides to relax into the case of Palestinian
Authority, corruption. In the case of Netanyahu, continued building of settlements. In other words, the foreigners are underwriting occupations.
So, the Palestinians could turn that back on the Israelis and say, OK, we give up, we're going to be occupied. You're going to have to pay for it
and that could be extremely difficult.
ANDERSON: What role of the P.A. these days, and what impact its demise, were it to?
KILEY: If it dissolved itself, the critical area would be that it would then dissolve all security corporation. It would throw to the Israelis all
and every intelligence problem that exists in terms of combatting terrorism from their perspective, particularly on the West Bank, less so in Gaza, of
course, that is under the control of Hamas where there is no security cooperation. So, that will be an immediate effect.
Of course, there is the wall, a physical barrier now, between the West Bank and most of Israel. But nonetheless that would be an immediate effect. It
would then also mean that the schools, health care, sewage, all of the basic structures of life that a state organization or a neo state
organization provides, a lot of it paid for by foreigners, wouldn't cease, but the foreign organizations would have nobody to pay to run it. It would
become an Israeli problem.
ANDERSON: So, Sam, I want to remind our viewers about some of the controversial steps the U.S. has taken recently as it prepares to unveil
what it calls the ultimate peace deal. We do not have a date for that.
[11:35:00] We have been told it is forthcoming for months. This is a deal that many will say Jared Kushner, Donald Trump's son-in-law, has cooked up.
Let's go through some of these.
It's moved the U.S. embassy in Israel to Jerusalem. Eliminated funding for the U.N. agency that supports Palestinian refugees. Cut aid to hospitals
that serve millions of Palestinians. And now closed the PLO office in Washington.
President Trump says the U.S. is helping push the peace process forward by taking on some of the hardest issues like Jerusalem effectively taking them
off the table. Is he pushing this on? I mean he has his supporters?
KILEY: It could be argued that, I mean, a bit like North Korea. If you've got a President in the United States who's crazy enough to make good on a
threat of a nuclear strike, people react. You may well see some kind of reaction coming from the Palestinians. I must say, talking to them and
talking to my sources in the Palestinian Authority, they're simply aghast at what is going on. Because of the things that have been taken off the
table that frankly they all acknowledge, for example, the right of return for Palestinian refugees and their descendants. They know that that's a
notional idea. There have been discussions in the past about a fudge that would allow people to travel to Canada and all kinds of things. You have
But by taking that off the table entirely, they feel that they're in a position in which they have no negotiating position. Even though in the
end they would acknowledge privately that some of these things would have been nonstarters. There's a division of the capital, shared capital or
half/half, if you like, in Jerusalem. I think it's a really massive problem. That is not something that they were prepared ultimately to
completely fudge, if you like, in the name of peace. In the end for Israel, this could be a moment or close to a moment when the Palestinian
Authority say we withdraw from the peace process.
The PLO ambassador to the United States at least sounded hopeful about the peace process early last year. So much so that Politico Magazine -- have a
look at this -- wrote this article on Palestinian's man in Washington. Saying he was surprisingly optimistic about the Palestinian's prospects
under President Donald Trump. We were hoping to interview the ambassador and, in fact, I believe that we have him. So, I'm just going to put this
to you. Before I put it to him. Justified optimism?
KILEY: I think that would be for his excellency to respond to, rather than me. But I would say that there has been a lot of pressure on the P.A.
that has achieved nothing over the last 15 or 20 years of the so-called Oslo peace process, to dissolve itself even from moderate Palestinians. It
will be interesting to hear what he might say to that.
ANDERSON: Well, here we go. Sam Kiley in the house for you. Husam Zomlot is the head of the PLO delegation to the United States. He's issued a
statement fiercely critical of this move to close the mission in Washington.
He says, quote, such a reckless act confirms that the administration is blindly executing Israel's wish list. We stand firm in our decision not to
cooperate in this ongoing campaign to liquidate our rights and cause.
Ambassador Zomlot as promised joins us now live from Ramallah in the West Bank. You condemn, sir, this decision by the U.S., but you say it doesn't
surprise you. Explain.
HUSAM ZOMLOT, HEAD OF PLO GENERAL DELEGATION TO U.S.: It's not surprising, Becky, simply because it's in perfect line with what has been happening
over the last many months, at least nine, ten months, which is executing the wish list, the grocery list if you may, ticking an item after another.
And allow me here to say this, the U.S. leadership over the last 27 years since the Madrid peace process in 1991 was never about bully or about
blackmail or the power of threat. It was always about the U.S. status in the world, the U.S. interest, vision, policy and investment. And this
vision was a common vision between us, the U.S., the majority of the Israelis and the international community.
Today this administration has absolutely proven that it has no vision whatsoever, it has abandoned the two-state solution. It has no clear plan
that we know of. We have engaged them for many months, there is nothing whatsoever of peace ideas and peace plans. All what they have is what they
have been doing, ticking off a major issue after another starting with Jerusalem and then refugees, as you may have followed.
Which tells me, Becky, if you allow me here, they are applying the tactic of the real estate business in New York City. It's like wanting to buy a
building that is worth $100 million by an offer of $3 million. How will they do that?
[11:40:00] They would start, you know, depriving the owner of the license, of the parking lot, and then driving the tenants out and then offering him
or her the dismal $3 million instead of the $100 million. This is what they're doing with us. But this is not only disgraceful, it's naive.
Because while it might work in New York with some poor individual property owner, when it comes to collective ownership and rights and the nation, it
does not work. It actually reads the opposite results.
ANDERSON: Let me put a couple of things to you. You draw some very sort of descriptive analogies there. We were reminding our viewers about some
of the controversial steps that you have alluded to and that the U.S. has taken recently, as it promises to unveil what it calls the ultimate peace
deal. Let me bring those up for our viewers sake. Moving the U.S. embassy as you have pointed out, eliminating funding for the U.N. agency that
supports Palestinian refugees, cutting aid to hospitals and now closing the PLO office in Washington. Point is, President Trump says that the U.S. is
helping push the peace process forward by taking some of the harder issues like Jerusalem off the table. And with the greatest of respect, sir, until
we see this Jared Kushner plan, neither you nor I have any real idea what they will be tabling at this point, do we?
ZOMLOT: No, we don't. We don't. We have engaged them for many, many months from March all the way to November. And we met them in Ramallah, in
other places in Washington, and the White House several times, we lost count, and we never had anything of substance. That's exactly the point.
What they are trying to do is that they are pushing us to accept whatever leftovers they will offer us. They will just apply.
Remember the entire team from Mr. Kushner to Mr. Greenblatt to Mr. Friedman are of the background of real estate business. They are just trying to do
that trick of wanting us to accept whatever is thrown our way and nothing could be more naive, actually. If this will do anything, it will do
exactly what has been happening. All that you have mentioned about Jerusalem and recognizing it as the capital of Israel or the issue of
refugees or settlements. I mean, the illegal colonial settlement according to U.S. policy for all these years, now we heard Mr. Bolton yesterday
describing it as housing projects. So, in every sense they have just co- opt and follow the Netanyahu government narrative and policy. In all this I don't believe -- we don't believe here, Becky, that it's --
ANDERSON: Go on, sorry. I -- apologies for interrupting.
ZOMLOT: We don't believe --
ANDERSON: Actually, as you -- as you discuss where you think things are going or hypothesize about what might happen, I do want to put this to you,
what role, what purpose, the P.A. these days, and as you sit and consider where we are at and self-reflect as a Palestinian, how much blame do you
put on the current administration and where Palestinians are at this point? You, for example, sounded very hopeful about the peace process early last
year. So much so that the Politico Magazine wrote this article on Palestinian's man in Washington. Saying you were surprisingly optimistic
about the Palestinian's prospects under President Donald Trump. Do you regret that?
ZOMLOT: No. We don't regret that because when we heard from President Trump in March when he called our President. In that phone call President
Trump made this remark, he said, I am going to commit to a comprehensive lasting peace between you and the Israelis. And I will invest every effort
I have to achieve that peace and I believe it is possible. And he added that he believes President Abbas is a man of peace and his words and
commitments. So, as Palestinians we have everything to gain, Becky, from a peaceful process that is genuine. And we extended our hands immediately.
And yes, we said we are ready and prepared. But the second, the moment, the real agenda has started revealing itself by November, when they
attempted at closing the office start with as a bully technique, then we took a firm, clear, immediate position.
And let me clarify this and make it absolutely clear, Becky, it was not our rights that has been undermined over the last few months, nothing about
Jerusalem, in fact, East Jerusalem is owned by us, every home, every house, every church, every mosque, every shop, we're not worried. Not worried
about the rights of 6 million refugees. I mean, these people will continue defending their rights and they have international cover, the rights are
enshrined in international law.
[11:45:00] The only status that has really changed is that of the U.S. It has absolutely lost its status as a mediator. Furthermore, it has lost its
leverage because if you do all that and if you cut the entire funding to the Palestinian territory, those back in Gaza, and you cut funding and even
cut funding to hospitals in Jerusalem, that treat babies for cancer, that has special treatment for special terminal illness, then you definitely
have lost your impact, your influence, your leverage.
And that's what brings me to my second point, Becky here, we feel free now. Number one, we feel our blockage of the bully was the right strategy. Our
declining and rejecting to deal with this administration since November was the right decision. And our approach to the international community to
fill the vacuum of the U.S. and mediate a peaceful process that is genuine to apply and implement international law is right. Our efforts to bring
Israel under accountability is in the right track. And addressing the American people and doubling our efforts to outreach the U.S. public
because our issue is with Mr. Trump and his administration, not with the American people, and we see the transformation and change, Becky, in the
U.S. for the support of Palestine.
ANDERSON: Good to have you on sir. Husam Zomlot is the head of the PLO general delegation to the U.S. out of Ramallah for you today. Thank you.
Coming up protesters take to the streets in Dallas in Texas demanding justice for a young man shot and killed by a police officer in his own
home. The latest on the investigation up next.
ANDERSON: This was the scene Monday night in Dallas, in Texas, in the U.S. Protesters marching, demanding justice for Botham Jean, the 26-year-old was
shot and killed in his own apartment last Thursday by off-duty Dallas police officer Amber Guyger. Right now, the 30-year-old officer charged
with manslaughter, but officials say she could face a more serious charge. CNN affiliate KTVT has more on how the shooting unfolded.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The Dallas police department --
REPORTER: Angry voices outside Dallas police headquarters demanded justice for Botham Jean. But four days after his shooting, there's still confusion
over what exactly happened. According to a newly released affidavit from the Texas Rangers, officer Amber Guyger had just ended her shift. Parked
in the parking garage and walked down the hall to what she thought was her apartment. An investigator wrote the door was slightly ajar and fully
opened under the force of the key to a nearly completely dark apartment. That's when Guyger claims she saw a large silhouette across the room, drew
her firearm, gave verbal commands that were ignored by Jean and fired her handgun.
[11:50:03] It wasn't until she was on the phone with 911 she claimed she turned on the lights and realized her mistake.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We don't know what actually happened. We just know that this story doesn't hold up.
Reporter: Attorneys for Jean's family say two witnesses have provided details contradicting Guyger's account.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They heard knocking down the hallway followed by a woman's voice that they believed to be officer Guyger saying, let me in,
let me in.
REPORTER: The witnesses, according to the family's attorneys, then heard gunshots followed by a man's voice.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What we believe to be the last words of Botham Jean, which was, oh, my God, why did you do that.
REPORTER: And the idea that Jean left his door open is, they say, one his family can't accept.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Everything we know about this young man, this accountant, this meticulous person, is that he would have locked his door.
ANDERSON: That's a controversial story we will keep an eye on. This is CONNECT THE WORLD. I'm Becky Anderson. Still ahead, at a time when human
rights can seem under attack for all sides we'll take a look at a powerful new photo exhibit capturing how people move on from abuses. That after
ANDERSON: It's just before 5 to 8:00 in the UAE. You're watching CNN. This is CONNECT THE WORLD with me, Becky Anderson. Welcome back.
One of our top stories, of course, this hour. From the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, to the 9/11 memorial site, this was the scene just
hours ago as New York marked 17 years since the September 11th terror attacks back in 2001.
A turning point in U.S. history, perhaps not the least here in the Middle East, 19 men hijacked four passenger planes, two of which crashed into the
World Trade Center twin towers. A third plane into the Pentagon. The home of the U.S. Defense Department where U.S. Vice President Mike Pence paid
his respects earlier today. While a fourth planes also intended for the capitol crashed into a field near Shanksville, Pennsylvania, where
President Trump spoke moments ago. Nearly 3,000 people lost their lives. And there is a lot more about the 9/11 memorials, including that
representing every victim on United Flight 93, that is on our Facebook page. That is Facebook.com/CNNConnect.
[11:55:01] Well, your parting shots tonight, trauma, healing and hope. That's the name of the International Criminal Court's brand-new digital
exhibit coming at the very time the ICC is facing sanctions from the United States. It's a reminder of the important work that it does. It features
powerful images like this one by award-winning photo journalists, Marcus Bleasdale, who spent two decades documenting human rights abuses. Working
with "National Geographic" and Human Rights Watch, amongst others.
Through these stories of survivors, he invites people to follow the path from the moment trauma incurs to the aftermath. Showing how victims deal
with crimes often feeling a strong sense of loss and eventually taking steps towards healing and hope. Including seeking justice and moving
towards reconciliation. Photos from the exhibit can be shared by the court's Instagram account which explores how art and science intersect with
I'm Becky Anderson. That was CONNECT THE WORLD. Thank you for watching. My colleagues, with the "EXPRESS", follow this.