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Violent Anti-Government Protests Grip Venezuela; Rare Look Inside the Battle for Mosul; Will O'Reilly's Ousting Be a Tipping Point for Women? Aired 6:30-7a ET

Aired April 21, 2017 - 06:30   ET



[06:31:52] CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: Instability growing in Venezuela amid violent anti-government protests. The U.S. now pulled into the chaos after Venezuela seizes a GM plant there.

CNN's Shasta Darlington joins us now with more.

It's a situation that seems to be going from bad to worse.


And it just doesn't seem to be stopping the Venezuela's opposition that was back out on the streets on Thursday. They've now vowed to keep up the pressure on President Nicolas Maduro with three more days of protest, and we also now know that three people were killed during massive demonstrations on Wednesday.

The crowds yesterday were a bit smaller, but they ended with similar violent clashes. With security forces tear gas on those protesters who themselves often cover their faces, throw rocks, and they carry signs saying no more dictatorships because that's what they think Venezuela is turning into, and they've got a clear set of demands, starting with elections.

They want a timetable for regional elections that have been repeatedly delayed. I think what's really notable here, Chris, is how sustained this latest wave of demonstrations has been. It really started at the beginning of the month. And this comes after a few years of economic hardships.

It just feels like that last straw was finally broken. They have been out on the streets, and, again, looks like they're going to keep it up. As you mentioned, we're also seeing the United States sort of drawn into the fray with General Motors announcing it's going to halt all of its operations in the country after authorities seized one of its plants -- Alison.

ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: OK, Shasta, thank you very much for the update from there. We will obviously monitor it. Meanwhile, thousands of Iraqi civilians are trapped inside Mosul's old

city. And ISIS is using them as human shields. CNN has rare access. We'll go there live next.


[06:37:48] CAMEROTA: CNN getting a rare look inside the battle for Mosul's oldest old city. Amid intense gunfire and mortars, ISIS is holding thousands of hostages as human shields.

CNN senior international correspondent Nick Paton Walsh went inside Mosul and he joins us live from Irbil, Iraq -- Nick.

NICK PATON WALSH, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Alisyn, remarkable to hear from the U.N. that they at one point feared as many as 400,000 people could be held in the old city of Mosul. The key strategic goal in those fighting ISIS here in Iraq and that old city, the most densely packed difficult place, 400,000 people possibly held effectively as hostages, as human fields by is in some of the nastiest conditions.


WALSH (voice-over): (INAUDIBLE) Mosul is so quiet. You ask yourself where are its people? Where have ISIS taken them?

The answer is here. Trapped in the old city, a densely populated final hold-out of ISIS. It is a stalemate of shooting and wait now. We're a few alleyways down, and it begins.

Tens of thousands of civilians held as human shields.

You can see from the drone pictures filmed during an ISIS counterattack exactly how tight the streets are packed.

The al-Nuri mosque from where ISIS leader gave his only real public speech, its central prize. The street window now the truth clear, but ISIS leaves nothing intact behind it.

There in the distance is the reason why ISIS is fighting so hard in these dense, winding streets to hold the Iraqi police and military back. That is the al Nuri mosque, the ideological heart of Iraq of their caliphate.

[06:40:06] They want more American precision fire power. Up until now, the help is weak, he says. They have advanced precise weapons, and when intelligence, they can help us better.

So far astonishingly this girl aged four has stayed in her home and survived. She does not flinch once.

There is no life under is. No food, no water, no electricity. We had to dig a well to pull water. The first thing she's really known is the police. She loves them, like kids.

And there as the shells still rain down, there are those that will never leave. And those who do as fast as they can. Far enough out, they have ferried to camps. There are stormy devices herding successful into kill zones to make them die with them.

RAJ ABU FAWAZ, MOSUL RESIDENT (through translator): They would besiege us and use us as human shields. Take people and families as they would --

IFSHA MOHAMMED, MOSUL RESIDENT (through translator): My brother and the rest of his family are besieged. ISIS hit them, dragging him away. He can't go anywhere.

WALSH: These voices are a fraction of suffering inside in a fight that may take months more.


WALSH: Things get more nightmarish there. Chemical weapons ineffective used against those Iraqi forces there, and day by day, streams of civilians slip their way out if they can. We only saw a small part of the fight there, but potentially there are tens, hundreds of thousands of people trapped inside of that. Now the bitter end of ISIS in Iraq where they believe they hold about 7 percent of territory here.

All eyes, particularly those in the White House focusing on the northern Syrian city, the de facto capital of the caliphate, ISIS declared, and that's Raqqah, where the offensive potentially make it underway in the coming weeks -- Alisyn, Chris.

CUOMO: Nick, thank you so much for the reporting. Such an important point.

They have two waves of victims. The ones they take out with their munitions and then all those forced live the reality in the aftermath.

CAMEROTA: Like that little girl, that is so telling that she was smiling because she was excited to be interviewed, and the bullet, all the hail of bullets that's going on. And as Nick points out, she wasn't blinking or flinching. She's so used to it.

CUOMO: That's all she's known. People can take you can win the fight. What happens the next day? How do you make life better for little girls like that? That's the question.

All right. So, big story we've been following. O'Reilly is out. What will replace him? Not talking about what show comes next, but will there be real change there and other companies? Is this going to be the catalyst for widespread culture shift? Coming up, you're going to hear from three women who worked for O'Reilly. Four women. Five.

CAMEROTA: No, just four.

CUOMO: Who worked with O'Reilly at FOX.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK) [06:47:04] CUOMO: All right. This story has been getting a lot of buzz. New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning strongly pushing back against allegations he was involved in a memorabilia scheme.

Andy Scholes has the "Bleacher Report".

This is about helmets, right?

ANDY SCHOLES, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: That's right, Chris. You know, a memorabilia collector is suing Eli Manning, Giants owner John Mara and others, alleging that they engaged in scam to sell him fake game used items. Well, yesterday, Eli angrily denied those allegations.


ELI MANNING, GIANTS QUARTERBACK: I have never done what I'm I accused of doing. I have no reason nor have I ever had any reason to do nothing of that nature. I have done nothing wrong and I have nothing to hide.

I've tried to do everything with class and be a stand-up citizen, and that's what I have done, and, you know, that's being attacked right now.


SCHOLES: Eli finally addressing the accusations from 2014 for the first time in three years after the plaintiff recently filed a motion to compel testimony that included an e-mail from Manning to a team equipment manager. He asked for two helmets that could pass as game used. Eli says that e-mail is being taken out of context. Civil case scheduled to go to trial in September.

All right. LeBron James leading the Cavs to the greatest comeback in NBA playoff history last night against the Pacers. Indiana came out on a mission, opening up a 25-point halftime lead. You can't ever count out LeBron. He played every single minute of the second half leading Cleveland all the way back. LeBron finishing with 41 points.

Cavs win 119-114 to a 3-0 lead in the series. They're going for the series sweep on Sunday -- Alisyn.

CAMEROTA: Thank you very much. I appreciate that, Andy.

All right. So, first, Roger Ailes, and now, Bill O'Reilly. Does the downfall of these powerful men mark a tipping point for women in the workplace speaking out against harassment?

Next, I speak with three of my friends and former colleagues from FOX News about what it all means.


[06:53:07] CAMEROTA: Bill O'Reilly is the latest powerful man to lose his job after a series of sexual harassment allegations. Have we turned a corner when it comes to harassment in the work please and talking about it?

Joining us now is CNN political analyst Kirsten Powers and CNN political commentators, Mary Katharine Ham and Margaret Hoover. All three used to work at FOX News and appeared regularly on O'Reilly's show.

Ladies, great to have you here.



CAMEROTA: Yes. We are all FOX News escapees -- I mean former employees. And --


CAMEROTA: We have all -- look, we have all had these conversations privately one-on-one, and it feels like it's time to have this conversation publically because I don't know what silence is getting us. So, you know, let's just talk about it. I know that approximate sometimes it's awkward and uncomfortable, but I guess it's time.

Margaret, let me start with you. I mean, do you feel this week in particular after Roger Ailes' demise in July, now Bill O'Reilly exiting. Is this a tipping point somehow?

HOOVER: Well, look, I hope that there continue to be changes at FOX News and that there really is an environment where women feel free to be able to talk about it and don't feel harassed. One of the things I would like to see because the rise of FOX News has also led to the rise of conservative celebrity personalities and the rise of other competitive conservative media outlets. I would really like to see a resounding rejection of this kind of behavior from --


CAMEROTA: Have there been any other outlets that have decried this?

HOOVER: David French wrote a great review denouncing this and making the case that this behavior isn't conservative. For a movement that really purports to stand for family values and moral consciousness, like this behavior should be flatly rejected.

CAMEROTA: Mary Katharine, Roger Ailes walked away with something like $40 million.

[06:55:03] It's being reported that Bill O'Reilly is walking away with $25 million. This sort of doesn't feel like a punishment for them.

MARY KATHARINE HAM, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Yes. I mean, I think probably we're turning a corner. It's seeing that women can deal with these issues and move forward in their careers and having that modeled in a really, really public way.

And I have to say, people have asked me, well, why are you not talking about this, and it's because I don't have much to tell. I never met Roger Ailes, which is strange for having been an employee at FOX News. I sat across from Bill, I was mostly in D.C., and that's an important distinction, because the environment was different in D.C. than New York.

But I worked with Bill for almost ten years weekly, and nothing bordering on sexually inappropriate with him.

Look, our relationship was frustrating. He was often paternalistic. Sometimes it was a fine relationship, but you can see that I worked it out mostly on camera by yelling at him maybe once every month or six weeks. I know other ladies did some of that as well. So, that was sort of the extent of it.

But I do think that one of the problems with doing business the way that it was done is even though I didn't experience it and frankly didn't see it and I assure I would not have been quiet had I, is that every woman who walks through those doors has questions hanging over her head and odd interactions she has to have about this and people wondering about you, and none of us deserve it. Victimized or not, none of us deserve that part of it either.

CAMEROTA: Certainly, now we do. Everybody asks me now. Did this happen to you? What was your experience? Everybody wants to know about it because, you know, it was also shrouded certainly under Roger.

Kirsten, you wrote an article that you are getting some criticism for online. You wrote a column in 2014 titled "Bill O'Reilly is not a sexist."

What did you mean then, and do you still feel that way?

POWERS: Well, actually, so -- for one thing, I don't write my headlines. My editor and I are constantly arguing about this. If you read the column, it never actually says that. It doesn't -- I don't make any great grand declarations about whether Bill O'Reilly is a sexist or not because I would not make those declarations about anybody.

What I was talking about was that Bill had been accused because he had attacked some women of being sexist or criticizing them. My point is he is actually an equal opportunity offender when it comes to going after people, and I think anybody who is on the show knows that. He goes after men. He goes after women.

I don't think that Bill disrespects all women. I actually think he took me pretty seriously. I think he took Mary Katharine and actually think -- and he took Margaret seriously. He just also had other behavior that was problematic. You know, the behavior I talked about that he didn't understand why that was offensive -- the "thank you for your blondeness".

So, what people want is they want a really easy story where Bill is rotten to the core and never -- nothing good ever happens, and that's not the story. You know? There were other things that were good about him. Mary Katharine and I were just talking about the fact that we were able to go on his show and really lay into him and argue with him in a way that a lot of hosts will not tolerate.

So, you know, he wasn't all bad, but there were problems, obviously, and I think that, you know, both things can be true.

CAMEROTA: Absolutely. By the way, the same was true of Roger Ailes. He could be charming and charismatic and helpful, and he could be bullying and sexist and harassing. I mean, this is all true. I'm glad that you are making those points.

But, you know, all of us get the question, so why did you stay? Why did you work there, Margaret?

HOOVER: Look, I mean, I would go and sit in front of Bill every week, like Kirsten did and like Mary Katharine, and it was an extraordinary opportunity to see how the magic is made by one of the best in the business.

CAMEROTA: The number one show --

HOOVER: In cable news.


CAMEROTA: A golden opportunity.

HOOVER: It was a golden opportunity, and it was told to me all the time, Hoover, I'm making you a star. That felt a little patronizing, but there was a sense cultivated that there was no life beyond FOX, and there was no life beyond sort of that experience.

And, you know, it was an opportunity, and, by the way, like, I did learn a lot by watching Bill O'Reilly, right?

CAMEROTA: By the way, you guys all fought back against him on camera. You also tussled.


HOOVER: And that's why he liked us, and that's why he invited us back year after year because we made good TV because we were able to stand up to him, and really give it back to him.

CAMEROTA: I mean, there's a larger point that we had ironclad contracts and that Roger intimidated people who ever tried to hire us away, and that's a longer story that at some point we can talk about, but so -- Mary Katharine, where do you think we are today in terms of these two powerful men, you know, going down so publicly. Is this a tipping point?

HAM: Well, like I said, I think the tipping point is sort of modeling the behavior that you can come forward and there is life after making that report. You know, somewhat ironically, the only experience I ever had with this kind of inappropriate behavior was long ago in my first job and I threw a flag on that stuff immediately the best I knew how as a 22-year-old and there was risk and it was scary. But maybe that's my story to tell.