Return to Transcripts main page


Fort Hood Shooter; Search for Flight 370; Interview with Rahm Emanuel

Aired April 3, 2014 - 08:30   ET


MAJ. GEN. JAMES "SPIDER" MARKS, CNN MILITARY ANALYST: Just allowing people to try to get on post every day and then depart at the end of the day. It's a 90,000-person installation. And also what you had in this particular case is you had an individual who was able to fly below the radar and we will figure out exactly how he had access to that weapon and what his mental state is.

CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: Lieutenant General, if I have you, you're hearing me OK over there, Lieutenant General Honore?

LT. GEN. RUSSEL L. HONORE, U.S. ARMY (RET.): Yes, sir, I do.

CUOMO: All right, great. And thank you for joining us.

The issue of, was the military doing what they needed to do with this man in their care. What is your perspective about how the military is dealing with issues of mental health, PTSD and others?

HONORE: Well, in the opening hours here we have what might make a CSI look like an amateur sport. In going back in the last few years of this soldier's life, there will be interviewing every sergeant he ever worked for, lieutenant, captain and battalion commander and his sergeant major. So they'll have a pretty good picture in the coming hours of how this soldier ended up at Ft. Hood. And then questions will start to happen.

General Milley and his staff will start asking questions. Where did he come from? How did he get here? And looking at things -- detail like the medications he was on and how is he being counseled. Because this is not a veteran. He's still on the - he's still an Army soldier. And people will be asking, why was he transferred in February to Ft. Hood, because when you move a soldier and his family, that's a very emotional thing.

The commanders already said this soldier is being treated for anxiety and depression. That means medication and counseling. And at the same time you moved him to Ft. Hood. All of this could have increased his stress. At the same time, the soldier is trying to convince people that he has a long-term illness that may need care one he leave the Army. And those soldiers have to fight and prove to people that they need care. That is the problem we have at the end of the day, Chris.

CUOMO: So, Russel, you're saying they need to fight and prove they need care and that's a problem. Meaning what, the bar is too high? The military is too slow to recognize it? What are you saying?

HONORE: Well, the military's a very small part of this big government that says, hey, if you have a back injury, show me. Puts you through a series of tests. If you say you have a mental problem, we'll give you medication. But before we move you on to be a veteran or we determine whether you can stay in the Army, long assessments, meetings, counseling, group interviews to -- for that soldier to prove that he has a problem. And all this will come out and hopefully we'll make that next move in dealing with all these soldiers that have been to war and come back and come up with a 21st century way of treating them as opposed to a World War II way of treating them.

CUOMO: Because here, Spider, you have a situation where your - do we believe that safety on base is why this happened? Probably not. Not military in that way. But our military being under stress and how we deal with it, legitimate issues. Suicide, as you know, is an increasing problem in the military.


CUOMO: Something like 6,000 a year. For our veterans, sometimes in theater, often when they come back home, that's why PTSD is relevant. I think this event is as much a reminder of that problem as it is of any other. Fair?

MARKS: Oh, it is, Chris, absolutely. And --

CUOMO: Because he basically did commit suicide when confronted.

MARKS: Absolutely. This was a soldier, as Russ has indicated, this is a soldier who was in a mental state and had acknowledged. He came forward and said, I think I have a problem and the military embraced him and said, we think you have a problem. And as Russ has indicated, and we've chatted about, why did the Army PCS this kid, permanent change of station. Why did he move him?

He literally got to Fort Hood two months before this event occurred. He should have had some degree of continuity of care where he was previously so you could evaluate him. You wouldn't have done that with a soldier who was undergoing some other type of physical, visible ailment. You would have left that young soldier where he or she was. But he moved him to Fort Hood. I think that is a part of this process that needs to be evaluated as well. But, clearly, we're dealing with a mental issue.

CUOMO: Now my producer is telling me, the suicide rate for the military is lower than the general population, but I think that may be a little bit of a distraction because these men and women get a lot more care than the general population does. I mean the military, in general, is very good at assessing their men and women because they have to because the capabilities they need. But, you know, here's something that confounds me.

The question I want to ask you, Russel, is, why did you, as the military - you know, obviously, you're not in charge of this, but from a point of perspective, why did you let this guy continue to have a concealed carry weapon when you were treating him for all these other things? But it's a frustrating question to ask because, obviously, the military already determined he was good enough to stay enlisted and keep working. So it's a frustrating process to hear he had all these problems, he's getting all this treatment, may have needed more, and yet he's allowed to stay just like anybody else. What does that mean?

HONORE: Well, when that soldier leaves the premises of Fort Hood and he goes into Killeen, he gets the rights of a U.S. citizen to be able to purchase a weapon and have a weapon inside the laws of the state of Texas. When he comes on Fort Hood, he follows Army rules and DOD rules that says you cannot have a weapon on that installation.

And if you do, it has to be registered. And if you're moving it from one place to the other, you have to have a purpose for doing that. So if you go off Fort Hood, you've got state and federal things that say you can do this. You can own a weapon. You can buy a weapon. But on Fort Hood, you can't have it.

I think, at the end of the day, it's not going to be about the gun necessarily. It's going to be about the soldier and the care that he should have gotten that he wasn't getting, or somebody knew. At the bottom, there's a sergeant that know that there's something wrong with that soldier, that he needed more help. At the bottom of this, there's a captain that know.

And I'm sure General Milley, and his chain of command, and we need to give him some space here, will sort that out. But it's about the person in this case and I feel sorry for his family who have to lay witness to what's going on here and to all of those that are injured and dead this morning.

CUOMO: You know what, you make the right points, lieutenant general, and, you know, the frustration is and something we have to deal with in society as well, should be easier to deal with in the military actually, is that even if you do know, what can you do to stop someone before they create the criminal act? You can't control their ability to get a firearm. It's hard to get them put into treatment involuntarily if they don't want it. So it's a complicated issue. We're seeing it play out right now. We've seen it before. Hopefully we don't forget as we go forward.

Appreciate the perspective, lieutenant general, Spider, major general, thank you very much for the perspective.

MARKS: Thank you, Chris.

CUOMO: Appreciate it.

Let's deal with this as we get more information. There's a lot of other news this morning as well. Let's get to Christine for that.

CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: And that story is number one.

Our top story, three service members dead, 16 injured following a deadly shooting at Fort Hood. The gunman then committed suicide. He's identified at Army Specialist Ivan Lopez. Australia is committing to search for Malaysia Flight 370 as long as it takes. The ambassador to the U.S. says they'll go until hell freezes over. A ship with technology to detect pings from the black box should reach the search area tomorrow.

Another strong earthquake off the northern coast of Chile. A 7.6 aftershock follows the 8.2 magnitude quake that caused at least six deaths and forced nearly a million people to evacuate low-lying coastal areas.

The Senate Intelligence Committee is set to vote as early as today over making details of the CIA's torture programs public. The committee's investigation reportedly found the CIA misled people about torture after 9/11 in order to justify it.

And a Delta flight was forced to make an emergency landing in New York after problems detected with the hydraulics system. The plane from Atlanta landed safely but rolled into a grassy area while taxiing.

We are always updating the five things to know. So go to for the latest.


MICHAELA PEREIRA, CNN ANCHOR: Boy, you're good with those five things, Christine. I wonder where you learned that from.

ROMANS: I got a good example.

PEREIRA: We're going to take a short break right here on NEW DAY. Next up, are the planes and ships that are searching for Flight 370 anywhere near the missing jetliner? One respected aviation expert is reviewing the data being used to track down the missing plane. We'll see what he has to say about the search.


CUOMO: Welcome back.

So much of the search for Flight 370 is based on assumption, right? One of those assumptions is based on satellite data. If the plane traveled south, that may have happened because of what they picked up on some of the satellite data. Are they sure? What if it didn't? What if it went north? Can they really know?

Now, if they're wrong in their assumption, what does that mean? It means that they're very far from where they should be searching, right? Certainly from where the search has been concentrated for more than two weeks in the southern region of the Indian Ocean. So, let's walk through the basis for why where we are now and maybe should we be somewhere else.

We have standing next to me CNN aviation analyst, contributor to, Mr. Jeff Wise.

Jeff, always a pleasure. JEFF WISE, CNN AVIATION ANALYST: Thanks, Chris.

CUOMO: All right, so we have some fancy graphics for you here. Ready? Let us show you the -- here's what we know based on waypoints, right, which is, this is the track that the plane was following before it reached the Strait of Malacca. A term that we never knew before now that we all know. That's what you're seeing right there, right, Jeff? So just take us through what we're seeing.

WISE: OK. So that first jaggedy part, that's where we know it went because on the primary radar track after the plane diverted from its intended course to China. It was spotted taking this zigzag course. Last seen heading to the northwest. And then what happened? All we know after that point is based on the seven Inmarsat data pings. They didn't have any content, they were just pings like you'd hear coming out of a sonar.

And so, the Inmarsat people were able to analyze this data, were able to extract some information from it and they were able to create these two tracks. It either went - either to the south or to the north. We've heard about this for weeks now. The data is symmetrical because the satellite is receiving this information. The satellite can't tell whether it's coming from the right or from the left. Inmarsat did some very clever data crunching, some analysis. They said, based on certain assumptions, it's more likely - more likely that it's in the south.

CUOMO: All right, so here are my questions, OK. Here's the lawyer skeptical (ph). One, do these people know what they're doing? Is this something they have to do on a routine basis?

WISE: We don't know. They themselves said they've never done this kind of analysis before.

CUOMO: So they've never done this kind of analysis before.

WISE: Right.

CUOMO: That's relevant.

WISE: Right.

CUOMO: Two, north or south, 50/50 split on which way it could have gone based on their best analysis?

WISE: They said it wasn't 50/50. They said it was weighted to the south. Why? We don't know.

CUOMO: Weighted? How weighted?

WISE: We don't know. They just said -

CUOMO: We don't know.

WISE: But they - but they felt confident enough that the prime minister of Malaysia got up in front of the world and said to the relatives, your relative, your loved ones are dead because it must be in the south. There's nowhere to land. They must be in the water. Therefore, they must be dead. That sounded like there was a lot of confidence in that analysis. However, they -- we don't know from first hand being able to see their work, look at their homework, as it were --

CUOMO: I wouldn't understand it anyway, though. None of us would.

WISE: Well, neither would I.

CUOMO: So you're going to have to trust the experts a little bit.

WISE: Yes.

CUOMO: I guess, and you tell me -


CUOMO: If it had gone north -

WISE: Right.

CUOMO: Doesn't it start increasing the possibility that someone would have had to know? As it starts to go north this way -

WISE: Right.

CUOMO: Then what happens? Well then you're (INAUDIBLE) - you know, you're starting to invade very snoopy air space here, right? India, paranoid about Pakistan and vice versa. Lots of technological capabilities there. On to Banda Aceh and Indonesia. You have Thailand. These are very sensitive areas. Japan, very technologically savvy.

WISE: Yes. Yes. Yes.

CUOMO: Wouldn't we have heard something? Is that a good basis of analysis for saying it makes it less likely?

WISE: That's been the assumption all along. People say, "Hey there's too much radar." But we know that this plane traversed the military radars of at least four countries. Whether it went north or south it had to have traversed at least four countries including if it went, for instance, Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia and Australia. And so that's a problem no matter which way you slice it.

CUOMO: Right. But it would have had to intersect the northern arc if it had taken that --

WISE: If it went north it had to wind up either in western China, Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan -- places like this. There's a lot -- a lot of ethnicities, a lot of different kinds of rivalries that are deep- seated. You know, you can -- you start to be able to tell all kinds of stories about why someone might have wanted to do something like this.

CUOMO: I know but there's -- you'd also have much higher probabilities of detection and disclosure of the plane being there. WISE: Well, theoretically. But since we don't know what happened, who did it, why they did it or what their aim was, it's -- you can't really talk about probabilities.

CUOMO: Or that anybody did it for any reason and that it wasn't something that was completely uncontrolled by any individual. We don't know that either.

WISE: It seems pretty clear if you look how carefully the zigzag path was laid out, how close they followed these imaginary way points in the sky, it seems to have been done by somebody who knew a lot about how planes navigate.

CUOMO: Only seems, though, right? Because we don't have like some collection of the expert community saying, no, no, no -- we definitely know it was somebody. They don't know what direction --

WISE: Malaysia seems pretty convinced that it was somebody. They've been calling it a criminal act all along. They've been very set about this thing -- it's an intentional act.

CUOMO: But that could be just the basis for procedural operations of an investigation as well.

WISE: Well, you know, we know -- the sands keep shifting beneath our feet. The fact is revealed and then it's retracted. It's changed. It's shifted. It's so hard to pin down a fact in this case. We had these pings. These seem pretty rock solid. We have these radar tracks. That seems rock solid. Everything else is conjecture.

CUOMO: So North/South really is still -- the best bet is south but they don't know where south. And south could be farther north from where there are right now.

WISE: It's all where you want to place your bets.

CUOMO: You know Mick, we keep saying as many experts as you bring in you're going to have that many different opinions. And there's so much pressure Mick, on them to have answers that maybe that clouds the judgment of moving even faster than they are already doing, you know.

MICHAELA PEREIRA, CNN HOST: That's a good point. All those families, they just want answers. Chris, Jeff, thanks so much.

Next up on NEW DAY -- among the things he's got to deal with -- ballooning debt, pension problems, unemployment and struggling schools. But Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel has a plan to help the city rebound. He shares some of them to with CNN next.


PEREIRA: Welcome back to NEW DAY.

President Obama is back in Washington this morning after a politically-focused trip to the Midwest where he shared a private dinner with his former chief of staff, Rahm Emanuel. The Chicago mayor profiled in CNN's original series "CHICAGOLAND" is struggling with some very old urban problems, even as he touts a plan to woo new media to the Windy City.

Christine Romans caught up with him in Chicago's new Digital Alley -- quite a conversation.


You know, Talking about how he wants Chicago downtown Chicago to rival Silicon Valley for some of these new jobs -- Motorola moving from the suburbs to downtown Chicago. I mean, Mayor Rahm Emanuel is a booster for his city. But he will reluctantly, only reluctantly, talk about national issues and I asked him about the 7.1 million enrollments in Obamacare.


ROMANS (voice over): Chicago mayor and former White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel weighing in on President Obama's polarizing Affordable Care Act which recently reached 7.1 million enrollees.

(on camera): Did Democrats get it right? Can they do a victory lap?

MAYOR RAHM EMANUEL (D), CHICAGO: All I can tell you is for the city's bottom line, our health care costs have come down, projected off of what they were going to do. Is it all the way where it needs to be? I think the answer -- the short answer to that is, "no". And the President will tell you that.

ROMANS: So no victory lap but it wasn't the disaster they said.

EMANUEL: First all of, if anybody tried to give a victory lap, you guys would steal it.

ROMANS (voice over): Emanuel traded in the White House for the Windy City now dealing with the city's ballooning debt and pension problems, and in some neighborhoods, high unemployment and struggling schools.

EMANUEL: We live at a time in particular where you earn what you learn. Which is why we put such an emphasis on our education and we set a goal and right now we have the highest graduation rate in the history of the public school system and in short a few years from now we'll be at 80 percent. I'm not going to rest until it's at 100 percent.

ROMANS (on camera): Do you think they should be in school longer?

EMANUEL: What city fought for the longer day? What city not only succeeded the largest increase in school time not only during the year but also towards the -- two weeks towards the end and the reason I was nutty enough to jump in the lake is because we have this thing called the "summer of learning". The kids in the city of Chicago read two million books in the summer. That's why I jumped in the lake. I challenged them and they did it.

ROMANS (voice over): Emanuel wants to make chi town tech town. It's already got Groupon, Grubhub And Orbitz, now Motorola moving downtown -- Chicago promoting its very own digital alley.

EMANUEL: The way I think we measure ourselves as a city is that the child you saw or the adolescent you saw at senior high school on the south side of Roseland in the city, they can look down and they can see this majestic landscape of high rises with incredible energy. If they think that energy, that excitement that's in this building in this room was part of their future, we're going to succeed.


ROMANS: You know, and I asked him about how do you get that excitement and that growth from the digital alley downtown, Motorola moving downtown and these big companies, business accelerators, incubators downtown? How do you get it a few miles south to cities like Roseland where Fenger High School is profiled in "CHICAGOLAND"? How do you make sure that those kids are going to be able to ride that wave too? That's what Chicago is trying to do.

PEREIRA: That's the challenge.

ROMANS: Long way to go but they're trying to do it.'

CUOMO: He's got huge challenges there.

ROMANS: He does, you know. And I'm telling you, he's got this pension issue. This week he was in the papers because, you know, he has to fix this big pension problem in the city. That means he's proposed raising property taxes. No one likes that. And property owners didn't like it. Papers went crazy. He's got a lot of work to do in chi town.

PEREIRA: He's certainly jumped into the role exuberantly. That's for sure.

ROMANS: He told me this is the best job in the world, the best job he's ever had. He loves this job. Even selling your pension plan -- your pension fix, still the best job? He's like this is the best job in the world. I love this town.

He grew up going around with his dad, a pediatrician in Chicago around, you know, around neighborhoods and talking to kids. He has an education degree from Northwestern.

CUOMO: And he knows how to fight. This is going to be a fight.

PEREIRA: That will be one.

CUOMO: It's a tough fight and he knows how to do it.

ROMANS: He knows how to fight and he knows how to talk.

PEREIRA: You can learn more about Chicago's mayor in CNN's original series "CHICAGOLAND". That's airing tonight at 10:00 Eastern, 9:00 Central.

And, oh, wait, on Saturday, watch Christine's show "YOUR MONEY" at 2:00 p.m. Eastern.

ROMANS: Shameless.

PEREIRA: It's never shameless -- family. We've got to take care of family.

CUOMO: Great picture -- almost does her justice. Even better looking in person.

Coming up, we're going to get back to Fort Hood, we're going to give you the latest on the shooting there. What we're learning about the person who did it. What may have motivated this man, a soldier himself, to kill three people before taking his own life?


PEREIRA: Much to get to in the news today. Let's turn to Carol Costello for "NEWSROOM". Good morning darling.

CAROL COSTELLO, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning, Michaela. Have a great day.

"NEWSROOM" starts now.

Happening now in the "NEWSROOM" deadly rampage.