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What Drives Young Men to Join ISIS; Interview with Christopher Dickey; Mother, Children Terrifying Police Encounter; Heroin Use Exploding in America.
Aired August 27, 2014 - 14:30 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
BROOKE BALDWIN, CNN ANCHOR: You're watching CNN. Bottom of the hour. I'm Brooke Baldwin.
When you hear about this young American, Douglas McAuthur McCain, dying on a battlefield in Syria for ISIS, most of us wonder why. Why would anyone join a pack of extremists so violent, so brutal it beheaded another American, journalist, James Foley, and posted that brutal video online?
So we asked CNN's Atika Shubert to get a little insight from a pair of young men, two of the foreign fighters in Syria.
ATIKA SHUBERT, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The videotaped killing of James Foley wasn't just a message to America. It was also a recruitment video for young men like these.
ABU BAKAR, ISIS RECRUIT: My initial reaction personally was that this was a direct -- justified response to the crimes of the U.S. against the Islamic State.
SHUBERT: We have spoken to Abu Bakar and Abu Anwatani (ph) before, two foreign fighters inside Syria, one of them British, claiming to be absolute believers in ISIS' medieval view of the world.
(on camera): Do you personally believe in beheading and executions like this and would you actually partake in one?
ABU ANWATANI (ph), ISIS RECRUIT: I would be more than honored to partake in execution like this. I hope God gives me that chance to do such a thing as the brother did with James Foley. Whether it be on somebody like James Foley or a soldier of America. My hands are ready to do this blessed act.
SHUBERT: The Muslim Council of Britain, for example, has come out condemning the killing of Foley, saying it is brutal and abhorrent, and that anybody who follows this belief is misguided. What's your response to that?
ANWATANI (ph): The Council of Britain, they are not Muslims. They have always fought against Islam with British government. They have tried to stop younger men going to Afghanistan, Iraq city, and they work in these so-called anti-extremist projects. They are not Muslims so this reaction coming from them is not surprising.
SHUBERT (voice-over): Who are these young men willing to commit such brutality, despite worldwide condemnation? Of Britain's nearly three million Muslims, only an estimated 400 to 500 have gone to fight in Syria. Roughly the same amount of Muslims who are currently enlisted in the British army.
British experts on radicalization paint a diverse picture of British Muslim extremists. Most are single men, under the age of 30. But a significant number are older and married with children. Many are converts to Islam, or are British-born Muslims from immigrant families. Many are also deepening their extremist ideology online. Some have links to gangs and the criminal underworld. But many are also well educated and from middle class families. So intelligence analysts say there is no one statistical profile or trigger that leads young men to such extremes.
The last time we spoke, both insisted they would not return home. That has now changed.
Abu Bakar, in particular, seems willing to come to Britain and bring his jihad with him.
BAKAR: There is no other choice but to come back and try to talk with the very -- with very reasonable message, then I will have to do that. So I am ready to take that step to come back if, if the countries don't stop attacking us.
SHUBERT: Any fighter bringing their so-called holy war back home is exactly what many Western security officials fear most.
Atika Shubert, CNN, London.
BALDWIN: All right. Straight out of that piece, let me bring in Christopher Dickey, foreign editor for "The Daily Beast," based in Paris.
A treat to get to see you today in person.
We were just talking, as you were watching the piece, these young men saying they're converting to Islam, they want to wage this war, and you were almost rolling your eyes.
CHRISTOPHER DICKEY, FOREIGN EDITOR, THE DAILY BEAST: I was rolling my eyes. Look, all this stuff about the Koran and Islam from those kinds of guys, it's crap. What they're talking about is I want to be famous. Almost all terrorists, in fact, share certain things in common. And it doesn't -- Islam is not one of the things they share. It was true of some in the Irish Republican Army. It's been true with Central America. It's been true in lots of places. What are those things?
BALDWIN: What do they share?
DICKEY: TNT, basically. Testosterone. They're almost all young guys. Some of these guys may be a little bit older. Narrative. That's very important. They may not be oppressed. They may not have grown up oppressed. But they passionately identify themselves with some oppressed people. Maybe their own, maybe somebody else's. And finally, theater. They want to project themselves on the world stage.
BALDWIN: They want the fame.
DICKEY: They want this fame. They want to carry out spectacular acts, whether it's 9/11 or the beheading of an American journalist.
BALDWIN: You bring up James Foley. There have been questions, as President Obama has presented plans, how does the U.S. approach what's happening in Syria? Then, possible war in the Middle East, based upon a beheading.
And the question is, as we were discussing briefly before you came on, and you said, yes, that beheading of James Foley is the catalyst, potentially, to something bigger.
I just want to play a little sound. This is from Lee Hamilton, a co- chair at the 9/11 Commission. Listen to his perspective.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LEE HAMILTON, CO-CHAIR, 9/11 COMMISSION: What kind of resources are we prepared to put into the effort in that region to deter, to contain, to eliminate, to defeat ISIS? I've heard those verbs, those words used by everybody. We're all over the place in trying to describe what our policy is. That needs to be focused, and we need to make up our mind how we're going to deal with this threat, not just in the United States, as Dan was talking about, but in the region itself.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BALDWIN: So he says we're all over the place. Do you agree?
DICKEY: We are all over the place. Look, what's Obama's first challenge here? It isn't really what to do about ISIS. It's what to do with the American people. The American people don't want to go to the Middle East anymore. Not at all. That's what we saw that a year ago with the chemical weapons being used.
DICKEY: We saw that Obama wanted to do something and backed off because it was really clear that the American public was against it. So now look at the way he's framed the situation again and again. When we first started to bomb ISIS positions, it was, what, to protect Americans in Erbil, Americans in Baghdad.
BALDWIN: Americans. DICKEY: Not American interests. American people --
DICKEY: -- in those places. We didn't talk about with drawing those American people. But we did talk about defending them.
So then you have an American journalist decapitated in this horrific film. That, in a sense, gives Obama what he needs to push things forward against ISIS. Even if we're not very well prepared, even if we don't know exactly what we want to do, we do know ISIS is presenting a bigger and bigger problem, not only in the region, but potentially here at home in the United States.
And finally, what was the most successful line used by the Bush administration when going on all the military adventures it went on? We need to fight the terrorists there so we don't have to fight them here. That was pretty much of a lie because, in fact, the risks have increased to us here as a result of what the Bush administration did. But it's very convincing when the American people hear it. Because what Americans want is to not get engaged with the rest of the world. They don't want the world to come and attack them.
BALDWIN: No, of course not.
BALDWIN: Of course they don't.
DICKEY: And this has to be cast in that light if the Americans are going to do anything.
BALDWIN: Chris Dickey, come back. Thank you very much.
DICKEY: Thank you, Brooke.
BALDWIN: I really appreciate it.
Coming up next, I'll take you back to what's happening in Syria and the Middle East.
But police are calling it a case of mistaken identity when a mother was stopped by officers, handcuffed, held at gun point with her kids in the car. And her vehicle didn't even match the description of the car these officers were looking for. Did police go too far? We'll discuss that after the break.
BALDWIN: If the outrage against police in America couldn't get any worse lately, a terrifying incident that happened near Dallas isn't making it any better. Police mistakenly pull the mother over at gunpoint, arrested her, as her children watch from inside of her car in fear. The woman's 6-year-old son, seen on this dash cam video, getting out of the car with his hands up. Police say they were looking for a beige or tan-colored Toyota with four black men inside. So how did they end up stopping this woman's burgundy Maxima?
David Schechter with our affiliate WFAA tells her story.
UNIDENTIFIED LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER: Driver, let me see your hands! Everybody stick their hands out the window!
DAVID SCHECHTER, REPORTER, WFAA (voice-over): This is the moment that shook Camitra Barber's belief that bad things do not happen to good people. Her car, loaded up with small children, her hands above her head, then shackled in cuffs. Moments later, her 6-year-old son, Ryan, comes out, too, with his hands in the air.
CAMITRA BARBER, MISTAKENLY PULLED OVER AT GUNPOINT: It makes me angry all over again.
SCHECHTER: How did this happen? Well, it started with this 911 call and a very clear description of a vehicle speeding down the highway, the driver possibly waving a gun out the window.
(BEGIN AUDIO FEED)
DISPATCHER: It is going to be a beige or tan-colored Toyota occupied by four black males.
(END AUDIO FEED)
BARBER: I drive a Nissan Maxima that is burgundy red.
SCHECHTER: No match. But after the suspect car sped far down the road, the 911 caller was now far back and thought the suspect was exiting the highway. And that's the very exit where police spotted Camitra's car.
UNIDENTIFIED LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER: The complaint that called in said the vehicle took that exit.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER: Come on back.
BARBER: What is wrong?
UNIDENTIFIED LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER: (INAUDIBLE)
BARBER: My kids!
UNIDENTIFIED LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER: Hold on.
BARBER: They're 6 and 8 and 10 -- 9! What are we doing?
UNIDENTIFIED LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER: Come on over here.
BARBER: Sir, what is going on? Oh, my god. You're terrifying my children! UNIDENTIFIED LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER: We got a complaint of a vehicle
matching your description and your license plate pointing a gun out the window.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHECHTER: In less than a minute, the officers knew they had the wrong car. You can hear them deescalate.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER: They look young to you?
UNIDENTIFIED LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER: They do to me.
UNIDENTIFIED LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER: Gun down, gun down.
UNIDENTIFIED LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER: Come on back here, son. Come on back here. You're all right.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHECHTER: Within moments, the officers are trying to calm the children's nerves.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RYAN BARBER, SON OF CAMITRA BARBER: I'm scared.
UNIDENTIFIED LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER: It's OK.
RYAN BARBER: Are we going to jail?
UNIDENTIFIED LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER: No, no one is going to jail. Stop crying. It's fine.
UNIDENTIFIED LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER: Everything is fine now.
UNIDENTIFIED LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER: Hey, stop crying. It's OK. It's OK. Everything's fine now.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHECHTER (on camera): Were they treated properly? Was this a proper stop that they need subjected to that kind of --
UNIDENTIFIED LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER: For a call that a weapon was involved, yes.
SCHECHTER (voice-over): Barber understands the officers were making quick decisions that night. Nonetheless, she is still deeply troubled. BARBER: I need you to make sure that you have all the facts, because
it doesn't -- you can't just say, OK, I'm sorry, and then I'm over it. I can't. I mean, every time I listen to or hear or think about it, it bothers you. It's not -- you know, I can't just say OK, I'm fine. It's OK. It's not a big deal. It is.
SCHECHTER: Especially when you're 6 years old.
BALDWIN: CNN legal analyst, former federal prosecutor, mother, Sunny Hostin, joins me.
It almost raises the hairs on my arm just to see a 6-year-old raising his hands up and absolutely terrified. Now, police say they were following proper protocol. Can you just explain to me what we just saw?
SUNNY HOSTIN, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: You know, I've got to tell you, as a mother, this is very difficult to watch. But they were following proper protocol. Traffic stops are really one of the most dangerous things that police officers do every day. And you'll find if you look at the statistics, oftentimes they get hurt. They get hit by cars that are going by too quickly. They get gunned down that way. And so they take a lot of precaution. And courts actually usually support the police officers during traffic stops. So when you look at this, you look at a detention that really was less than a minute. They did ask everyone to put their hands outside of the windows. The guns were drawn. And they did put handcuffs on the mother. And that is troubling, of course. But given the length of time for the detention, I think it was probably proper police protocol.
BALDWIN: But if they're looking for a tan car, why did they pull over a burgundy Maxima.
HOSTIN: Of course, that's a problem. But if you look at some of the facts of the case, apparently, the 911 caller said the car is about to get off the exit. And this car got off the exit. And oftentimes, late at night, quite frankly --
HOSTIN: -- it happened so quickly, and a tan car may look like a burgundy car. So, you know, it's just so troubling to see it, especially in the context of what we have been covering recently with Ferguson and other police shootings. But again, it's such a balancing act for police officers. And I've
got to tell you, from my vantage point, this is something the police officers deal with all of the time. And I don't see improper protocol here.
HOSTIN: Yeah. BALDWIN: Sunny Hostin, thank you very much.
HOSTIN: Thank you.
BALDWIN: I appreciate it.
Just ahead, a CDC worker possibly exposed to the Ebola virus in West Africa. Now that individual, we're told, is back flown back to the U.S. The details on that breaking news ahead here on CNN.
BALDWIN: CNN NEWSROOM is taking a closer look at the impact the heroin trade is having inside of American cities. Our in-depth series this week is call "Deadly Fix" that examines how more and more states are seeing the shift from people using costly prescription drugs in favor of cheaper alternate forms of heroin. In fact, a spike in heroin overdoses has forced at least one state to declare a public health emergency.
Here is CNN's Deborah Feyerick.
LT. DAVID BETZ, CHELSEA MASSACHUSETTS POLICE DEPARTMENT: He's coming up, side street, behind where you're at.
DEBORAH FEYERICK, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): It's just after dinner on an ordinary Thursday night in Chelsea, Massachusetts.
UNIDENTIFIED LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER: We've got a visual on the guy.
BETZ: Yeah, the buyer. We have the buyer. I guess the buyer texted them to say he's on the way.
FEYERICK: Lieutenant David Betz and his narcotics officers are gathering intelligence on a controlled drug deal.
UNIDENTIFIED LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER: What did he buy? How much is it?
UNIDENTIFIED LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER: Five bags.
FEYERICK: Chelsea is north of Boston, just over the bridge, across the Mystic River, and like many other cities and towns across America, police here have seen demand for heroin skyrocket.
BETZ: Drugs are -- you hate to say they are as American as apple pie. They are here. They are not going anywhere.
FEYERICK: The growing epidemic is fueled in part by people increasingly hooked on prescription painkillers, people looking to heroin as a cheaper way to get high. People like Marie, who grew up here and took her first hit two decades at age 16. We agreed to protect her identity.
(on camera): How often do you do heroin now?
MARIE, DRUG ADDICT: Several times a now. Like right now, I've already done two no 40 packages today.
FEYERICK: Do you have one dealer or multiple?
MARIE: Multiple. You also need multiples dealers because sometimes one ain't around so you need to back up dealer.
FEYERICK (voice-over): Police here say the majority of drugs at 60 percent are sold in and around the public park by Chelsea town hall, an endless flow of traffickers, suppliers, sellers, and buyers.
(on camera): How do they find they are way here into a place like Chelsea?
BETZ: They almost have like a network of runners or suppliers and they will send them out like delivery guys in a pizza store and say you go to Chelsea for the day. You go to another city for the day and they will basically network like that.
FEYERICK: What's the most number of times somebody has been arrested?
BETZ: Oh, that I've seen?
BETZ: Well over 200.
FEYERICK (voice-over): Back at Chelsea police headquarters, the evidence room is nearly filled to capacity.
BETZ: These are all heroin cases and cocaine cases that we've work on and the twist is just the corner of a sandwich bag that they will take.
FEYERICK (on camera): Can I hold it?
BETZ: Go ahead.
FEYERICK: A twist of heroin that costs a fraction of a single prescription pain killer. This batch of heroin is worth $300 dollars.
(on camera): So if you have the same amount of Oxycotin or any of those drugs, what would it be?
BETZ: A little over $2000.
FEYERICK: Police say they're not even from here, they don't live in Chelsea. They're coming from other cities and towns.
BETZ: We know more cities are more affluent. We'll ask them, how did you end up here from a suburb of million dollar homes? They'll say they got hooked on opiates, you know, they ran out of money, they're not available there, like they are here. FEYERICK (voice-over): And though she grew up in Chelsea, Marie says
she wants to move first chance she gets, hoping to run from the addition she calls a life sentence.
(on camera): You O.D.'d five times. Did you ever once think, oh, why did I wake up?
MARIE: Yes, every single time. Every time I woke, I woke up pissed off. Like, I'm such a screw up, I can't even die right. I'd rather be in the ground than continue with this.
BETZ: Coming up there now.
FEYERICK: An endless cycle of drugs and small towns trying to stem the tide.
BETZ: If I woke up tomorrow, I'd do it all again.
BALDWIN: Deb, thank you for that.
Coming up next, breaking news on CNN. The CDC says an employee may have been exposed to Ebola. And that person is not only being flown back to the United States, but will be allowed to carry on with a normal life. We'll talk with Elizabeth Cohen how that will work, next.