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ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES
Racial Bias in Policing Ferguson; Open Statements in Tsarnaev's Trial; Investigating American Ambassador Attacked in South Korea
Aired March 4, 2015 - 20:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: Good evening. Thanks for joining us.
We begin tonight with breaking news. And our first video from the scene of an attack on key American diplomat overseas. Mark Lippert is his name. He is America's ambassador in South Korea. You see the video there, the aftermath. His face wounded, bloody, being led away from the breakfast forum where he was attacked by a man with a knife. According to South Korea's (INAUDIBLE) news agency, the man pushed ambassador Lippert on to a table and then went at him with the blade.
The ambassador was taken to the hospital where he's reported to be in stable condition. President Obama called him there a short time ago. His injuries, thankfully, not life-threatening as you can see. However, the attack on which is normally a very safe city was obviously terrifying. According to local media, witness reported hearing somebody yell North and South Korea should be unified. Police quickly took the man to custody. His last name is Kim, which obviously a very common Korean last name. The Pyongyang news agency reporting that he has a criminal record and was supposed to join U.S.- South Korean military exercises which got under way this week.
We do have a reporter in Seoul. Paula Hancocks joins us now. What do we know more about this attack?
PAUL HANCOCKS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Anderson, we just had a brief briefing in the last couple of minutes. And they have said that this did happen just over two hours ago at 7:42 a.m. local time. It was a breakfast meeting and according to police, this happened just as ambassador Lippert was about to start eating. The attacker was sitting at the table next to him.
Now, this briefing this morning was actually for reunification of the two Koreas. It was a group that is pushing for this and this attacker was a member of this group. So he's not an unknown. We know that just as the ambassador was about to start eating, he attacked him with a small knife. Earlier, it was a razor blade. Police have corrected that. They say he's a man in his 50s. Local media saying he does have a previous criminal record, but he was able to be within that breakfast meeting and that close to the ambassador. Ambassador was then rushed to the hospital.
COOPER: Sorry, do we know much about the security surrounding the ambassador? What's it typically like at an event like this?
HANCOCKS: Well, the police have told us about security here. They said there was 25 police officers outside the event. This was an art center where this happened and they said there were no special requests from the U.S. embassy as the ambassador was there. But they knew this about was happening. And they were able to detain this man quickly because they had police inside as well.
But just looking from my own personal point of view, a couple of weeks ago I went to a dinner with ambassadors and security in this country is not particularly tight. I was able to walk in without my bag being searched, without a metal detector and then was actually sitting next to the Italian ambassador.
So security here, even though this is a country which is technically at war with North Korea, it is considered a very safe country. A breakfast event downtown Seoul is not considered to be a high-risk area for any ambassador, even the U.S. ambassador. And people here, even members of the public, would have more access to ambassadors than other conflict zones and certainly that they would in the United States.
COOPER: And for the first time, we are seeing of the man being wrestled to the ground, the alleged attacker there. And as you were saying, I think interrupted you, but the ambassador in the video that we see of him, he is basically holding up a tissue or something to his face, try to stop the bleeding. He was taken to the hospital, obviously.
HANCOCKS: That's right. Yes. Police say he was attacked by this knife on his right cheek and his hand, you can see him holding a tissue to his cheek. The embassy spokesman said though obviously it's not life-threatening. That he is in a stable condition. And you can see him being guided to a car, but he is walking and he is talking at that point as well. So certainly, they are hoping that these injuries are not particularly severe.
But obviously, everyone is quite shocked here. It's the first time a U.S. ambassador to Seoul has been attacked. We have seen attacks like this in the past though. Remember, President Parker hey back in 2006 when she was campaigning was actually attacked with a knife herself as well. She had a slash across her cheek at a public event which just shows that the people are able to get close to those in power, so much closer than other countries.
COOPER: Yes. Paula Hancocks, shocking. Thank you.
Chris Hill served as ambassador to South Korea during the George W. Bush administration. He, too, joins us from Seoul.
Ambassador Hill, obviously, incredibly disturbing to see this. I'm wondering, what was your initial reaction to the attack on Ambassador Lippert? Were you surprised that somebody was able to get that close?
CHRIS HILL, FORMER AMBASSADOR TO SOUTH KOREA (via phone): Well, frankly, it's very shocking as Paul made the point. This is considered a very safe place. I mean, when I was ambassador here, yes, I had security but often, I was able to, you know, walk outside by myself and occasionally I'd walk home from the embassy. So, it's a very low-security environment. And certainly I've been in many of those breakfasts. It was just across the street from the embassy. This is not something one normally associates with a need for high security.
COOPER: Is an event like this -- I mean, obviously, you don't have to go into security details on something like this, but would have people with you from the embassy? Would you have security personnel with you, close protection?
HILL: Again, I can't speak to the current situation, but what would normally happen in a country like this and in fact happened when I was here was that you were assigned a security person from the Korean government. Basically that person would kind of make sure that, you know, you could get to your seat and then, you know, strange people come up to you. So I don't know the details of what happened this morning. But normally, you'd have someone.
In addition, I think whenever the ambassador goes somewhere; there would be a discussion between the embassy and the event organizers to see what kind of security arrangements they have. And normally, the Koreans are pretty well buttoned up. And as suggested this morning, quite a few police outside. And normally within the event itself, there would be some security people. But in this case, it seemed to be remarkable that a member or person seated for the breakfast, actually, did this.
COOPER: It's interesting, thought, you say the security person assigned to you is assigned by the South Korean government. So in terms of U.S. embassy personnel or U.S. security personnel, you don't have somebody -- or you where there, you didn't have somebody to in close protection on you?
HILL: Yes, it varies. Sometimes, obviously, in Iraq, you have a, you know, small army accompany you and they're all American. But in a country like this, you know, according to the Vienna convention, it's the country, the host country, that's responsible for the security of embassies and ambassadors.
So in any embassy, you'll have marine guards on the inside. But the outside, you will have a host country security people and you would have host country security people assigned to a VIP, to the ambassador, to make sure nothing happens. But unless there's some unusual circumstance such as those that prevail in a place like Iraq, you would not have a U.S. security person going around with you.
COOPER: The report that the attacker said something about north and south not being unified, maybe opposed in joint U.S./South Korea military exercises that recently gone under way. I mean, I guess, it would suggest some sort of political mindset, perhaps this person is also maybe disturbed in some level, but how contentious an issue is that in Seoul these days?
HILL: Well obviously, it is contentious. I mean, we're in the annual -- this is the month of the year where there are these annual exercises that have gone on for decades. So it's not unusual but obviously, it's contentious and it certainly brings about the debate between South Koreans who feel there ought to be less of this and those South Koreans were very comfortable with the idea and the U.S. troops are here to exercise what are really are obligations in terms of protecting South Korea in the event of a war.
So these things get discussed, but the notion that they would spill in to violence is an extremely unusual notion and therefore, I think we'll have to wait for the investigation. But I think there's something in this guy's head that probably needs to be examined.
COOPER: And finally, just an incident like this, does this then change, obviously as you said there's an investigation, does it change the thinking on the part of U.S. officials, would they then kind of relook at their security situation and whether or not they need to up that in terms of close protection of the ambassador?
HILL: I'm sure there will be a discussion within the embassy about that. There will be a sort of an assessment on what they have to do. I mean, obviously, you're sitting at a breakfast and someone from the neighboring table stands up with a knife and attacks you, that's pretty unusual. I've never heard of that.
So that has to be looked at and what the security was. I don't know what the outcome would be whether there would try to be more security, whether they try to rope off the ambassador's table in the future. Who knows what they try to do. But obviously, have to look at this in terms of lessons learned and figure out what to do in the next such circumstance.
COOPER: It's obviously very disturbing incident.
Ambassador Hill, I appreciate you joining us. Thank you so much.
Joining us now on the phone is CNN's finest graduate, Mike Chinoy who is currently a senior fellow at USC, U.S.-China Institute, also former secret service agent, Dan Bongino and CNN global affairs analyst lieutenant colonel James Reese, a retired force member.
Colonel Reese, let's start with you. I mean, the reports indicate this attacker cut ambassador Lippert with the knife. To do that, I mean, you have; obviously, you can't be more than arm's length from your victim. It's a personal attack. The amount of security ambassador travels with doesn't protect against that kind of vulnerability it seems like in this case.
LT. COL. JAMES REESE (RET.), FORMER SPECIAL FORCES COMMANDER: Anderson, good evening. You're right.
You know, my concern is that if the ambassador represents the president of the United States in every country, he is and it is. Diplomatic security has this way each day on whether they protect or they are going to not, you know. Again, the man who represents president of the United States, I got to believe has got to have a close protection officer or what we call an agent in charge that's right there within arm's reach if something happens, can grab that principle, get the ambassador or block that threat coming from the ambassador. So I think it's, really, diplomat security is going to take a hard
look at how they're going to do these in other countries around the world, even those we consider to be low risk.
COOPER: Yes. I mean, Dan, particularly given the threat from North Korea, the level of tension with North Korea, and North Korea in the past has sent agents into South Korea to kidnap people and the like. Without presidential level security though, there's really no way to prevent something, somebody getting close to another person. Is there?
DAN BONGINO, FORMER SECRET SERVICE: No, there's not, Anderson. There's always going to be a balance here between access and security. And those securities never going to be absolute. It's only going to be relative. But the guest who just spoke, I agree with his assessment there. I think we have to look at countries we traditionally consider safe. You know, France, South Korea.
We're going to have to reconsider having an ambassador there put on his own without a diplomatic security service representative. I think that's a really poor decision. The profile of the country alone along with the ambassador creates a threat profile significant enough to warrant or at least one agent.
COOPER: Mike, the fact that this guy reportedly attacked the ambassador, at least vocally saying something about joint military drills between South Korea and the United States, whether or not the guys disturbed in other ways, is that, I mean, I ask the Ambassador Hill about this a little bit, how controversial is sentiment is that there? I mean, how controversial are these exercises these days?
MIKE CHINOY, SENIOR FELLOW, UNIVERSITY OF SOUTH CALIFORNIA (via phone): Well, the exercises are sort of controversy. There is a substantial though clearly a minority view in South Korea among people on the left who are critical of the alliance, some of whom are openly sympathetic in North Korea.
And the kind of emotional issue, emotionally charged issue, division of the Korean peninsula just gone off since the Korean war and there are people on the left in the south and South Korea who blame the United States for the division.
So things, feelings get stirred up this time of year. The North Koreans test fired short range missile and protest the military exercise. Just two years ago, tensions reached the point that there were real fears that there might be some kind of army conflict. So that's the atmosphere and context in which this person took the action he did. Their press support indicating that he was also involved in some kind of attack on the Japanese ambassador a few years ago. So this is something that people feel deeply about and if you're troubled in some ways to begin with, that it can sort of send you over the top.
COOPER: Yes. Everyone, stay with us, our panel. We are going to take a quick break. When we come back, we are going to have more on this with the late word on ambassador's medical condition we're getting. Details on that ahead. (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
COOPER: Well, the breaking news tonight, a knife attack on America's ambassador to South Korea Mark Lipper at the breakfast meeting in Seoul. Police so have a suspect in custody. They say it was actually dining at the event with the ambassador. He was a member of the group that the ambassador was talking to. Ambassador was taken to the hospital where he was being treated for non -life-threatening injuries. Just moments ago, we got some new information on that.
I want to go back to Paula Hancocks in Seoul. What have you learned?
HANCOCKS: Well, Anderson, we know straight off of this attack, the ambassador was taken to a local hospital just about half an hour ago. We understand he was transferred to a larger hospital, severance hospital here in Seoul. We're being told by that hospital, he is currently in surgery. They don't have details of his condition at this point. They said they're waiting for the end of the surgery to give us any kind of information.
And we also know from police that the attacker himself was likely injured. We understand he had a fracture. Although, they're not saying exactly where that fracture was. But at this point it's not clear if he's being treated. We know he's being questioned -- Anderson.
COOPER: All right, Paula, thank you very much. I want to bring in our Pentagon correspondent Barbara Starr, who is a friend of the ambassador. She joins us now.
You know Ambassador Lippert well. What can you tell us about him? I read he was a former Navy SEAL?
BARBARA STARR, CNN PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT: Well, actually he's a reservist in the navy right now, work in intelligence issues. He has been assigned to a Navy SEAL unit at one point.
And like most of the Pentagon press corps, professional friends with Mark Lippert because he was a very familiar figure here until a few months ago here in the Pentagon hallways. He served as chief of staff to former defense secretary Chuck Hagel. He served in a number of positions working Asia policy. This was his expertise. He had been so excited about going off and becoming the ambassador to South Korea.
And on his facebook page over the last several weeks after he arrived, some of the pictures really are heartwarming. He and his wife just had a baby. They have a newborn baby, just several weeks old. And he posted a lot of pictures of himself walking around Seoul relatively alone with his rather large basset hound and many South Korean children coming up to him to play with the dog. So a guy that really likes to get out and about and I don't think you can emphasize enough in terms of his expertise. Asia policy was his expertise, is his expertise and he has been very excited about being ambassador there.
COOPER: Obviously that, you know, whether or not he would be able to continue to walk around without some sort of close protection, we will have to see. I understand top U.S. military to South Korea, they have, obviously, been briefed about the attack as well.
STARR: Absolutely, Anderson. Four-star army general (INAUDIBLE), the top U.S. military official in South Korea briefed a short time ago about the incident. (INAUDIBLE) right now in charge of running these U.S./South Korean military drills. These are fairly routine exercises. But of course, it has set off a lot of rhetoric in North Korea which is claiming, of course, that all of these drills are a precursor to an invasion of the north. General Skaproti (ph), just a few days ago put out a statement reminding everyone that North Korea has been notified about these exercises and that they are purely defensive in nature for the U.S. and South Korea to exercise their ability to operate in the event of a contingency emergency without keeping stability on the peninsula. This incident, very disturbing, obviously.
COOPER: Yes. Barbara Starr, appreciate the update. Thanks.
Back now with Mike Chinoy on the phone, also Dan Bongino and lieutenant colonel James Reese.
Dan, the timing of the attack with this military drill under way as Barbara Starr just said, those are not popular in North Korea. It certainly seems like security should be at least a little stronger during contentious events in the region. And again, North Korea has sent, you know, spies, has sent operatives into South Korea to kidnap people in the past to attack people.
BONGINO: Yes. I wish I could tell you I was surprised, Anderson, but I'm not having spent 17 years of my life in law enforcement, 12 in the security arena with the secret service.
The assets are limited. I can't say that enough. And you know, it pains me to say that on cable news, but maybe it will spur someone to do something about it. You know, outside of the president and vice president, you know, I got to sound the alarm a bit. The security apparatus in the country around, some of these foreign dignitaries and people with really significant profiles wrapping themselves in our flag doing our business overseas is just not adequate. It's just not there. I wish I could tell you something different.
COOPER: Colonel Reese, how big, I mean, it's always a balance. And something like this, this man represents the United States. He wants to be able to move relatively freely. He wants to be able to interact with people in a natural way. He wants to be able to shake hands and look people in the eye. At the same time, there's, you know, the security consideration. So it's a balance, I guess, in moving forward from here.
REESE: Anderson, it is. You hit it right. I mean, no one wants to have a close security detail around them. You've been in those positions before. They're not a lot of fun. Bottom line is this. It's a gentleman like that represents the United States of America and the propaganda anyone could get by attacking an ambassador, a high government official, a propaganda about that enough showing the strong America doesn't have a security sense about it to protect their ambassadors abroad. It's not good. Again, ambassadors don't want it. It been around it my whole life
also. But it's something we have to do and it's become part of the puzzle they have to deal with though.
COOPER: Mike, in North Korea in the past and there's no evidence North Korea is any way involved in this whatsoever. But in the past, they have sent operatives down into South Korea, haven't they? They've kidnapped people and brought them back across the border.
CHINOY: Yes. The North Korea staged any number of operations in South Korea including in the late 1950s in the sense that it assassinate the father of the current president of South Korea. But I think it's seems very, very clear at this point it's not at all like something North Korea would be involved in. This guy is a lone operator.
COOPER: Yes. I'm not suggesting there's any North Korean involvement. I'm just simply saying in terms of a security profile and the security picture, I would imagine that is something that also has to be taken into account.
CHINOY: Yes, there's no question. And in fact, there is a lot of security around, you know, the presidential presidents in Seoul. But this was an event across the street in the American embassy is a morning breakfast to discuss issues related to the unification to the Korean peninsula. So it's not something where you would think that this kind of thing would happen.
And Ambassador Lippert has been notably, even by the standards of other American ambassadors, very accessible, out and walking. He even set up a profile for his dog, as Barbara Starr mentioned. So he's out of his was from other ambassadors.
But these things do happen. I remember when I was working for CNN. I was doing a live interview with then American ambassador (INAUDIBLE) and somebody, a South Korean tried to attack him. But our driver was trained in martial arts (INAUDIBLE) and then continued. But these things happen. They get carried away. But these things do happen (INAUDIBLE).
COOPER: That's a good driver to have there, Mike Chinoy.
Mike, great to have you on. Thank you, Dan Bongino, as well Colonel Reese. All right, thanks.
Because details are still unfolding, we are going to keep you updated throughout the hour, if we are going to anything new whether when the ambassador gets out of surgery.
Up next, where the federal government now calls the pattern of police racism and many protesters in Ferguson were marching about, results of a justice department investigation and the racist email that are uncovered.
(COMMERCIAL BREAK) COOPER: More breaking news tonight and three emails to tell you about. We don't have the actual screen shots of the emails though presumably the U.S. justice department does. They had provided the descriptions.
The first one dated April 2011, shows President Obama has a chimpanzee. The second from June of that year describes a man seeking welfare for his dog because their quote "mix in color, unemployed, lazy, can't speak English; they have no freaking clue who their daddies are." The third email from that October shows a bare-chested group of dancing women apparently in Africa. The caption reads Michelle Obama's high school reunion.
All three circulated and there are more were sent and circulated among members of the police department and court system in Ferguson, Missouri, including supervisors.
The part of what attorney general Eric Holder has called a searing report from the department of the civil rights division, 102 pages long, a catalogue, a pattern of racism in the nearly all-white Ferguson police department and a practice of treating citizens, mainly African-American citizens, targeted to be stopped, cited, fined and threatened with jail time if they do not pay up.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ERIC HOLDER, U.S. ATTORNEY GENERAL: A community where local authorities consistently approach law enforcement, not as a means for protecting public safety, but as a way to generate revenue, a community where both policing and municipal court practices were found to be disproportionately harmful to residents.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Well, the numbers n a city that 67 percent African-American are telling. African-American is representing 93 percent of arrests, 90 percent of citations, 85 percent of all traffic stops and 88 percent if all use of force incidents. That's the tough toxic backdrop to the protest that are up to with the police shooting of Michael Brown.
Significantly today, the justice department did not find any basis for federal target against Officer Darren Wilson which important to say who since left the force. However, his boss, the police chief as well as the mayor of Ferguson, they are still on the job. Late today, the mayor spoke out.
Sara Sidner joins us now from Ferguson from more. So what did the mayor have to say?
SARA SIDNER, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: The mayor talked about the fact there were problems with the department. Of course, obviously the DOJ putting all that information out there to the public first, so we had to make some kind of response.
It was him by himself, not the police chief, not the city manager. But he talked about the fact that they're going to do things about these problems. He talked about the fact they're going to change the fee structure in the courts. They are going to cap the revenue that they get from things like fees that they are going to and stop fining people for not showing up to court, all things that have really frustrated this community.
But the most concrete thing that we heard today in that press conference would have to do with the racist emails and what those employees will now face. Listen up. This is what the mayor had to say.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MAYOR JAMES KNOWLES, FERGUSON, MISSOURI: This type of behavior will not be tolerated in the Ferguson police department or in any department of the city of Ferguson. Immediately upon leaving that meeting, the three individuals were placed on administrated leave pending an investigation. One has since been terminated.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: I got to say, Sara, it's a little bit late for the mayor to suddenly now be shocked that there's racism in Ferguson, Missouri, when we were there over the summer, I believe it was and interviewed him. He was saying that there is no racial issue, that there was no racial issue in the police department, in the community at large. It's kind of amazing now to suddenly hear him, you know, as if the veil has been lifted from his eyes.
SIDNER: Well, to be fair, about a month after that that initial stuff in August, all that unrest in August, about a month after I talked to him about that very same thing because he did come out and say, you know, I didn't realize, this community was so divided, and he said, you know, I was wrong. I now see it. I didn't realize people were so upset about some of the things that were happening including these fees, and including this ticketing.
But we're seeing a very, very scathing report from the DOJ. And I do want to mention this. I just got this information from a source that is - has knowledge of the investigation. Those two other people that are on administrative leave, we understand they're not going to survive this investigation. They will not be working for the Department, two officers, one works inside the department, but he's not an officer. That's new information exclusive to CNN, but as you can tell, you know, there is a lot of folks here. Very frustrated, very, very frustrated with that press conference because nobody got to answer any questions, ask any questions. They got a statement and then they left.
COOPER: Was the chief of police, did he show up? Did the chief of police show up to the press conference.
SIDNER: No. The chief of police wasn't there, the city manager wasn't there. And, you know, those are the two that have better paid, you know, to do their jobs. The mayor gets something like, you know, a few hundred dollars a month to do his job. Those other two positions are paid positions and people wanted to hear from them. They help run the city too, especially the police chief. Because the DOJ looking very heavily at the police department. Not a word. Not a word to us. Not a word to anyone else, either.
COOPER: All right.
COOPER: We'll see whether there's transparency in that police department. Sara Sidner, thank you. Joining us now is Neil Brentregger, attorney for Officer Wilson, and General Counsel to the St. Louis Police Officers Association, also legal analyst and former federal prosecutor Sunny Hostin and New York Times op-ed columnist Charles Blow. Sunny, I mean these e-mails. These racist e-mails. What do you make of them?
SUNNY HOSTIN, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: I mean I think I'm just as shocked as everyone else, but I'm more shocked, actually, at the mayor's reaction. I mean, firing three employees that sent some e-mails, OK. I understand that that may be a start, perhaps scratching the surface, but we're talking about a pattern and practice of systematic racism found by the Justice Department after reviewing over 35,000 pages of documents and investigating this case. And so, you know, I found it ...
COOPER: It's not just three people.
HOSTIN: It's not just three people. I found it woefully inadequate. I mean why - you know, why did we not hear an apology, why did we not hear an acceptance of the DOJ recommendations? To me, I just feel like leadership, there has to be a leadership change and the mayor shouldn't be there. I don't think that Chief Jackson should be there, and I suspect that after the Attorney General said these are concrete steps that are going to be taken and everything is on the table, there has to be accountability and I think that accountability starts at the leadership.
COOPER: Charles, in this report, they talked about one incident, an African-American man had an argument in his apartment, Ferguson police responded, they pulled the guy out of the apartment by force. He then tells the officer, you don't have a reason to lock me up, the officer responds with the n word and says I can find something to lock you up on and there were a number of people in this report who used, you know, racial epithets and things like that. And you are reading them, are you surprised by this?
CHARLES BLOW, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Well, it's not necessarily about surprise, but I mean the racial epithets, the racially charged e-mails, that's actually the easy part, right? Because you can get rid of those people. You can identify who did it. You can get rid of that person. The bigger part is the systemic part of it, the architecture of authority that's being used as an instrument of oppression, because it is not about hurt feelings. This is about poor people to a large degree, many of them African-American people who are getting the short end of a stick and this is real money, right? If you're running basically a prison if you stack up so many fines on people that cannot pay them and then they have - then they get a warrant, they get a summons, they - report to jail. That's a person who's now been taken out of a family that is money that the family cannot use. Every time someone makes the argument about, you know, somebody - too many people on welfare, well, every time we engage in these sorts of practices, we are taking money away from actual families, real money that real people need and could use.
When they were talking about in that report about sales taxes going down. Well, sales taxes are going to go down. These things are feeding on each other. If you take money out of people's pockets that they could be spending on goods and services and you charge it to them in fees, it's going into your pocket. Of course, the sales taxes are going down because there's a limited amount of money. This is not about her feelings, I want people to really understand that.
HOSTIN: And policing shouldn't be about financial.
BLOW: Right. This should be about public service.
COOPER: I want to bring in Neil here. Neil, a couple of things. First of all, the Justice Department, I think it's important point, decided not to pursue federal civil rights charges against Darren Wilson. He was your client. I know you spoke to him today. Why did he have to say to that and also, I'm just wanting your take on what the Justice Department found, this report is scathing.
NEIL BRUNTRAGER, ATTORNEY FOR OFFICER WILSON: Well, let me start with Darren. Of course, he's relieved and glad that it's over. It's been a very long road for him and, again, the 86 page report that was prepared by the Justice Department is a very thorough report. And I've said all along, that we have, of course, had to be very careful to not reach any opinions or conclusions until we've seen it all. We have now seen it all. And that 86 page report really does set out in great detail the reasons why there should be no prosecution. And we're glad for that. I wanted them to approach this with the same vigor that they claimed they were going to do this investigation. I think that the Justice Department has just like in its 102 page report, has a duty to make sure that people understand why they made the decisions they made regarding Darren Wilson and I think that that has to be clear because if we're going to have confidence in the Justice Department's decision, then you have to really explain it to people. Even people who don't want to listen. So, again, you have to make that clear, so I'm glad.
In terms of the second report, you know, again, I've looked at that. I've read it. It's a terrible indictment of the situation. Now, again, I don't know all the facts. It's not a department that I represent, but again, it really does speak to the larger problems that we have, that I've been talking about now for at least several months.
COOPER: I guess I want ...
BRUNTRAGER: That we want to talk about race, we have to talk about policing.
COOPER: And I guess, I mean, you know, we've got to go because we did so much breaking news on the attack on the ambassador, but if now, you know, all the talk about transparency in this, to police department for the chief of police not even to show up to the press conference and, you know ...
HOSTIN: It's remarkable.
COOPER: Stand up and say, you know what, we've got a problem or just these people, or whatever it is, but to not even show up, and leave this mayor who's a part-time guy, I got to say, that's --
HOSTIN: It's remarkable - it's remarkable that people are saying, we don't know all the facts. Well, just look at the over 100 page document.
COOPER: Neil, I just want to ...
HOSTIN: I think we know a lot of the facts.
COOPER: What about the chief of police, does it surprise you that he didn't even show up?
BRUNTRAGER: Yeah, it does, Anderson and again, today, then fire three people. As though, gee, we just found out today. You know, again, I don't know all the facts. We don't know all the facts. Even the Justice report, which is 100 pages long, has a lot of anecdotal information, but look ...
HOSTIN: It has a lot of facts too, Neil.
BRUNTRAGER: The conclusions are unavoidable. The conclusions are unavoidable and I do think that the idea that today all of a sudden, they would decide, look, we're going to fire three people?
BRUNTRAGER: Again, it seems like a knee jerk reaction to me too, Anderson, and again, there's I think a lot of explaining that has to be done. That we've got a long road we've got to travel.
COOPER: There is no doubt about that. Neil, appreciate you being on. Charles Blow as well, Sunny Hostin as well. More to talk about this in the future. Breaking news, new video of the carnage and mayhem moments after the Boston marathon bombings nearly two years ago. Strangers rushing to help strangers making tourniquets out of anything they could find. This was shown in court today. We'll show it to you.
COOPER: Opening statements today in the Boston marathon bombing trial and the simple statement from the defendant's lawyer Judy Clarke. It was him, she said. He did it. And prosecutors played video unseen by all of us until now that shows what Dzhokhar Tsarnaev and his brother Tamerlan did showing first the explosion, which shakes the buildings and people immediately afterwards, some covering their ears, many in shock. But also, ordinary people taking extraordinary life-saving action, some of them taking all the items of clothing from a convenience store, using it for tourniquets, then rushing outside. It's a terrible scene doing what they can to try to save people's lives. The survivors and families in the courtroom, federal prosecutor Bill Weinreb said the brothers' goal was to kill as many people as possible with their pressure cooker bombs. Which again, raises a lingering question that we frankly still don't have an answer to. Did the defendant build the bombs as he claims to have done from instructions he found online or is there some other person, a master bomb maker on the loose somewhere? Alexandra Field is working that angle.
ALEXANDRA FIELD, CNN CORRESPONDENT: First, as suspect one and suspect two. But almost immediately after the manhunt that left one dead and the other captured, investigators privately questioned if there were more involved. The reason for the doubts? The bombs.
Court documents revealed questions from the beginning about whether Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev were capable of making them. These relatively sophisticated devices would have been difficult for the Tsarnaevs to fabricate. Searches of the Tsarnaev's residences, three vehicles and other locations associated with them, yielded virtually no traces of black powder. Of the two remote control detonators used during the marathon bombings, only one was recovered and nearly two years later, the doubts still linger.
MICHAEL MARKS, FORMER NCIS SPECIAL AGENT: These were two relatively sophisticated devices that went off almost simultaneously. That had a very, very short delay. It would be my opinion that they had somebody who was more of a skilled bomb maker, an engineer, if you will. System and saying these are the steps you need to go through.
FIELD: Dzhokhar Tsarnaev told police he and his brother acted alone and built the bombs following instructions from al Qaeda's "Inspire" magazine. Investigators say the explosives were made with improvised fuses from Christmas lights and remote control detonators made from model car parts. Not impossible, but hard to get right without testing and the government has never said where the bombs were made or if there's evidence the Tsarnaevs tested others.
JULIETTE KAYYEM, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: That is a big gap in the evidentiary case.
FIELD (on camera): Is it possible that police still believe to this day, that somebody helped these brothers build the bomb?
KAYYEM: In the absence of any proof that they had the capability to do it, there will continue to be investigations about whether there could have been three, four or five others.
FIELD (voice over): But who? No one has been publicly named as a possible co-conspirator. Investigators have focused on Tamerlan's suspected ties to militants. In 2012, the older Tsarnaev spent six months in Russia. Authorities have questioned how much exposure he may have had to radicals and whether he could have received training there. It's not clear if either side will suggest that there may have been a third party involved in the attack. But the defense will try to pin the blame on others.
KAYYEM: The defense strategy is going to be to create enough doubt within the juror's mind of Dzhokhar's sort of mental state leading into this. So, this idea that there might be some evil hand out there telling Dzhokhar what to do, whether it's his brother or someone who's a bomb maker fits nicely into that narrative.
FIELD: The trial centers on how the jury will see suspect number two, the prosecution, painting a portrait of a cruel co-conspirator, an equal partner in hideous crimes. Radicalized through Internet research, spewing the rhetoric of al Qaeda, a man who planned to kill and did. But the defense will draw Dzhokhar in the shadow of a mastermind older brother. Younger, struggling in school, abandoned by his parents. An easy victim of deep manipulation from suspect number one.
COOPER: And Alexandra Field joins us now. So, the defense is saying, there's no doubt the brothers placed the bombs. They are also pushing more blame on the older brother.
FIELD: Absolutely, Anderson. And that's the clear strategy. Look, the prosecution really doesn't have to get into who built this bomb or where it was built. They have to prove Dzhokhar's role in the commission of the crimes he's accused of and the defense is frankly already conceded those points. So the defense right now has to focus on the sentencing phase of this trial. The death penalty is on the table. So their strategy is to prove that Tamerlan was the mastermind. They believe that could create some sympathy for Dzhokhar and then we'll have to see if that sympathy is enough to spare Dzhokhar his life when it comes to the jury's decision here, Anderson.
COOPER: Try to build sympathy for this guy. All right, Alexandra Field, thank you.
Just ahead, Russia's opposition leader Boris Nemtsov who was gunned down in Moscow in what some say is a political revenge killing. CNN's Anthony Bourdain spoke with him last year. He joins me next for his first interview since Mr. Nemtsov was killed.
COOPER: Investigators in Moscow say all scenarios are being considered as they are looking into the death of Russian opposition leader Boris Nemtsov. Mourners gathered to remember him yesterday, four days after he was gunned down as he was walking near the Kremlin. Nemtsov was one of the most outspoken critics of Russia's President Vladimir Putin. Putin today called the killing a disgrace.
Last year, CNN's Anthony Bourdain spoke with Nemtsov about politics, corruption, and about Vladimir Putin. It was an exchange they had over dinner that hasn't been seen before where Bourdain asked him if he was afraid of getting killed. Take a look. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ANTHONY BOURDAIN, CNN ANCHOR: Given the worrying connection between angering Vladimir Putin and bad things happening, are you concerned?
BORIS NEMTSOV: Me?
NEMTSOV: About myself?
BOURDAIN: Yeah, you're a pain in the ass.
NEMTSOV: I am concerned, generally. Generally. I want to tell my family are much more concerned than me. Because if you're concerned every minute, that's the best way to be killed.
BOURDAIN: Why can't you just go along like everybody else? Why do you have to be - you know, why make life difficult for yourself? Against ...
NEMTSOV: This is good question. First, I am well known guy. And this is a safety because if this happens with me, it will be a scandal not only in Moscow City, but throughout the world.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: And Anthony Bourdain joins me now. I mean he thought in some ways that his notoriety would protect him. And he was wrong.
BOURDAIN: He didn't seem concerned when I had dinner with him. I really think he enjoyed being who he was. He was fully aware of the danger of the situation in general and I think he was not surprised by the corruption and the extent of the corruption going on around him, but I, you heard what he said. I think he believed that his stature, his position, his international profile would protect him.
COOPER: I talked to Gary Kasparov a couple of days ago and he described him as a larger than life character.
BOURDAIN: Handsome, cocky, sure of himself, incredibly smart guy, funny. A dangerous man to, you know, people who he's criticizing.
COOPER: Do you have any doubt that Vladimir Putin was behind this, either directly or ...
BOURDAIN: Nemtsov maintains that it is a criminal culture, essentially. He says elsewhere in the interview, you know, the states, Canada even, the Scandinavia have a problem with corruption, but here he says, corruption is the culture. It is the way business is done. It is the system. He insists that it is essentially a criminal enterprise. Now, any criminal enterprise I know of, if you worked for a New York crime family and you shot somebody and left them on the front lawn of the boss without his OK, you would be in bad order. Bad things would probably happen to you. So, I think the person who did this, I want to know, who done it. I don't think there's any mystery. I put it to Nemtsov at one point. I said there's no mystery, do you think? I brought the Litvinenko case.
BOURDAIN: You know, you somebody poisoned this opponent of - loud critic of Putin in central London with radioactive polonium. They could have shot him, they could have stabbed them, they could have pushed him into a river. No, in central London at a sushi bar, an extremely rare, extremely expensive radioactive substance was introduced to this man.
COOPER: Just as with Nemtsov, he could have been killed in a dark alley somewhere near his house.
COOPER: He was shot within site of the Kremlin, essentially.
BOURDAIN: I think the state of mind is such that whoever did this, wants everyone to know, assumes everyone knows and is pretty sure that no one will do anything about it and I also think they're right.
COOPER: I want to play something else he said to you about other Putin critics who had either ended up in jail, ended up being killed or left.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BOURDAIN: I don't think you need to be a conspiracy theorist to say whoever did this, very much wanted everyone to know who done it. Everybody understands.
NEMTSOV: Yeah, of course, and everybody is meant to understand.
BOURDAINE: Yeah, everybody understands. Everybody understands everything in this country.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: I mean he did seem to have a sense of humor about it all, which I guess in that situation, what else are you going to do?
BOURDAIN: No, when you are fully aware of the intricate details of corruption so enormous, so outrageous, so blatant day after day after day. I mean you better have a sense of humor or you go mad and he did have a sense of humor.
COOPER: Is it strange to have met this guy and realize? I mean because now, you know, you and I talk to you, you talked to a journalist in Iran who is now in captivity and now Nemtsov. I mean is it?
BOURDAIN: There was a sense of he made you believe that he was untouchable. I mean our dinner was supposed to be at one of the best restaurants in Moscow. We had it arranged in advance but when the chef owner found out that Nemtsov was coming, he immediately said, no, no, no, no way. I don't want this guy's radioactive, I don't want anything to do, I don't want to be seen with him or bad things might happen to me. I believed, you know, he made me believe that he would live forever. He was - he had that assurance, sense of humor. He seemed to not be worried in such a way that he made you believe it too.
COOPER: Yeah. Anthony Bourdain, thanks very much.
Well, stay tuned for Anthony Bourdain's "Parts Unknown." It starts at the top of the hour right here on CNN.
Just ahead, we'll get the latest on the attack on the U.S. ambassador in South Korea. CNN's Paul Hancocks is in Seoul monitoring all the developments.
COOPER: A lot of breaking news tonight including the attack on American ambassador in South Korea Mark Lippert. As we reported, at the top the broadcast Ambassador, Lippert was assaulted with a knife at a breakfast gathering in Seoul. It was about a ten inch knife. A short time ago, we learned he's having surgery right now. Police have a suspect in custody. This is new video of the suspect on the floor. He was attending the breakfast with the ambassador, he belongs to the group the ambassador was talking to. Paula Hancocks joins me again. Now, we understand you have got some new information about this attacker.
PAULA HANCOCKS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: That's right, Anderson. We understand from the name and from the photo, that this attacker, this man, sir named Kim is the same man who actually attacked the Japanese ambassador - back in 2010. This was - when he actually threw a slab of concrete at the ambassador, but ambassador was not injured, wasn't affected by this, but we do understand that he does have a previous criminal record. We've also seen that he heads up a blog online and in that blog, we see a photo of him from February 24th, where he's protesting outside the U.S. Embassy and protesting against these joint-military drills between the U.S. and South Korea, which angered North Korea so much saying that they are jeopardizing the relations between north and south and jeopardizing family reunions between north and south. So, clearly, we can see that he does have a history of being angry about what the U.S. is doing. Clearly, police will be looking at that very closely. Anderson?
COOPER: Yeah, it raises more questions about the security situation, how much did they vet the people who are in the room and what more now needs to change moving forward for the U.S. ambassador and other U.S. ambassadors in other places that are considered safe. Paula Hancocks, I appreciate your reporting.
That does it for us. "ANTHONY BOURDAIN PARTS UNKNOWN," starts now.