Return to Transcripts main page


U.S. And North Korea Flex Military Muscles; U.S. House Panel: Flynn May Have Broken Law; Ivanka Trump Booed At Women's Even In Berlin; Le Pen's Push To Broaden Her Support. Aired 2-3a ET

Aired April 26, 2017 - 02:00   ET




ISHA SESAY, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): This is CNN NEWSROOM, live from Los Angeles.

JOHN VAUSE, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): Ahead this hour, rising tensions. North Korea honors its military with parades and artillery drills as the U.S. begins joint exercises with the South and Japan.

SESAY (voice-over): He led calls to lock up Hillary Clinton. But could Trump's former national security adviser Michael Flynn be facing charges for not disclosing his dealings with Russia?

VAUSE (voice-over): And looking for love online to save an entire species. An endangered rhino joins Tinder.

SESAY (voice-over): Hello and welcome to our viewers all around the world. I'm Isha Sesay in Los Angeles.

VAUSE (voice-over): I'm John Vause at CNN World Headquarters in Atlanta. This is NEWSROOM LA.


VAUSE: The U.S and North Korea are flexing their military muscles again as the nuclear crisis with Pyongyang escalates. State media is reporting leader Kim Jong-un supervised a massive demonstration of artillery power to celebrate Army Day.

And the U.S. Navy conducted drills with South Korea and Japan of the Korean Peninsula.

SESAY: Meanwhile, the U.S. says there's evidence of digging at a tunnel entrance at North Korea's nuclear site, which suggests the nuclear test is not imminent. Plus the entire U.S. Senate is being summoned to the White House on Wednesday for a rare classified briefing on North Korea.

U.S. House members will be briefed separately by national security officials. Our own Paula Hancocks joins us now from Seoul.

And, Paula, we seem to be witnessing a scary game of tit-for-tat drills.

PAULA HANCOCKS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: That's right, Isha. Certainly in spring this is when the military drills between the U.S. and South Korea happen and it's often a more tense time but this year that seems to be something a little different.

You have the buildup of U.S. military hardware at the same time as you have these military drills. And of course, you have North Korea is showing its own massive live fire drill as well.

But certainly from the U.S. and South Korean point of view, they say what they're doing right now is necessary.


HANCOCKS (voice-over): Massive firepower destroys an imaginary enemy, a joint ground and aerial attack shown to the media so we can show the world the damage South Korea and the United States military could do. Now, the U.S. and South Korea insist they have -- they have no specific enemy in mind when they're carrying out these drills but it's simply not the way that North Korea sees it.

Actions speak louder than words for Pyongyang. Washington says these drills are routine, annual, defensive. Pyongyang says they're provocative and hostile.

North Korea holding its own massive military drills Tuesday to mark an important day, the 85th anniversary of the founding of its military, the Korea People's Army. Spring is often tense in Korea. Annual war games by the U.S. and South Korea interpreted in the North as practicing for an invasion. But without training the U.S. military says it won't be ready to fight tonight, as their motto says.

KELSEY CASEY, U.S. MARINE CORPS: It's essential. The only way that we're ever going to be able to fight is to train like we fight.

HANCOCKS: The U.S.S. Michigan, the nuclear-powered submarine, docked at Busan port in South Korea Tuesday, described as both routine and a show of force within the U.S. military. The U.S.S. Carl Vinson heading back to the region and the U.S. missile defense system THAAD is arriving in pieces to be fully operational as soon as possible. An unmistakable build-up of U.S. military assets and no matter how routine this live fire drill may be, it's an image that won't be lost on North Korea.


HANCOCKS: From North Korea's point of view, the live fire drill that they held on Tuesday, according to state-run media, was their largest ever combined fire demonstration -- Isha.

SESAY: Paula, as we witnessed these tit-for-tat drills and the rhetoric, certainly on the part of the U.S., being ever hardened against Pyongyang, I'm wondering at this stage is there any moderating factor there in the region looking to basically rein in tensions, anyone acting in that role, to try and move this from the brink of a confrontation?

HANCOCKS: The one factor that has not been decided yet in the region is of course is the South Korean presidential election. We know that happens on May 9th and the front-runner at this point is a liberal, Munjay Inn (ph). He is pro-engagement. He was part of the South Korean government in the past that did engage with North Korea.

That's the unknown factor at this point. He was going to be in the seat of power in South Korea if it is someone who is more progressive and who was --


HANCOCKS: -- more liberal then potentially that could temper the rhetoric we're seeing from North Korea and Washington.

But, of course, it's still no guarantee that he would be able to have the power over Washington to try and temper the rhetoric.

SESAY: Paula Hancocks, joins us there from Seoul, South Korea.

Paula, appreciate it, thank you.

For North Koreans, a military holiday is like Army Day are a very big deal. We got a rare look inside the celebrations from CNN's Will Ripley. The only American television journalist in North Korea.



WILL RIPLEY, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Army Day in North Korea, the 85th anniversary of the Korean People's Army. More than 1 million active duty soldiers, more than 6 million if you count reserves and paramilitary, one of the largest standing armies in the world.

We almost never see this side of North Korea's men and women in uniform.

RIPLEY (on camera): This is a public holiday here in North Korea, which means citizens are enjoying a rare day off. And as you often see on days like this, lots of dancing in the streets.

RIPLEY (voice-over): Carefully choreographed display of national pride, North Korea calls it single-hearted unity. Outsiders say these men and women have no other choice.

As Pyongyang residents dance, a very different kind of demonstration on North Korea's east coast. The nation's supreme leader Kim Jong-un showing force with what South Korea calls a large scale artillery drill, less than two weeks after this massive military parade and a failed missile launch.

Analysts say these new North Korean missiles could some day carry nuclear warheads to the mainland U.S. DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Our nation faces serious --

RIPLEY: A growing arsenal President Trump called a grave threat to the world. He's pushing the U.N. Security Council to punish North Korea for developing weapons of mass destruction that violate U.N. resolutions.

In its own show of force, the U.S. deployed a nuclear submarine to South Korea, as the U.S., South Korea and Japan conducted joint naval drills Monday, all this as the USS Carl Vinson moves closer to the waters off the Korean Peninsula.

The approaching U.S. warships conjured memories for this North Korean veteran. Senior Lieutenant Colonel Un Yong Il speaks to me in front of the U.S.S. Pueblo, a U.S. Navy spy ship North Korea captured in 1968.

"The Pueblo reminds me of another vote traveling very near the Korean waters," he says. "The Carl Vinson carrier. We are no afraid. Just like we capture the Pueblo, we can sink that aircraft carrier."

It's a threat made by North Korean state media, prompting the Pentagon to warn Pyongyang to stop provoking the U.S.

RIPLEY (on camera): Are North Koreans worried that you may be headed towards war with the United States?

"It's a grave situation," he says, "but we're ready to counter the American threat with an all-out war and nuclear attack."

In this militarized nation, even civilians are told they may someday have to pick up arms, even on days of celebration, citizens say war with the U.S. is always looming on the horizon -- Will Ripley, CNN, Pyongyang, North Korea.


VAUSE: Republican and Democratic lawmakers investigating the Trump campaign's ties to Russia said the president former national security advisor may have broken the law.

They claim Michael Flynn failed to disclose payments from foreign governments and they say the White House has denied their request for documents related to Flynn. Bringing you details now from CNN's Pamela Brown in Washington.


PAMELA BROWN, CNN JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): New questions about whether President Trump's former national security adviser broke the law over payments he received from Russia and Turkey.

MANU RAJU, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL REPORTER: Do you believe that Michael Flynn broke the law?

REP. JASON CHAFFETZ (R), UTAH: I see no information or no data to support the notion that General Flynn complied with the law.

BROWN: The revelation comes after leaders of the House Oversight Committee reviewed classified documents in a private briefing. Speaking to reporters on Capitol Hill, they revealed they've seen no proof showing Flynn, a former top military intelligence official, received permission from the Pentagon or the State Department for the foreign government payments he received.

REP. ELIJAH CUMMINGS (D), MARYLAND: He was supposed to get permission and he was supposed to report it and he didn't -- period.

BROWN: And they say he didn't fully disclose the more than $500,000 his firm was given for lobbying activities on behalf of Turkey when he applied to reinstate his security clearance. Or the $45,000 he received from Russia for an RT-TV speaking engagement. Money Chaffetz says Flynn might have to pay back.

CHAFFETZ: As a former military officer you simply cannot take money from Russia, Turkey, or anybody else. And it appears as if he did take that money. It was inappropriate and there are repercussions for the violation of law.

BROWN: Flynn's attorney says in a statement he did comply with the law on the Russia payment saying quote, "General Flynn briefed the Defense Intelligence --


BROWN (voice-over): -- Agency, a component agency of DOD, extensively regarding the RT speaking event trip both before and after the trip."

The embattled former national security adviser left amid controversy in February after he lied about discussing sanctions with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak. Now the forming acting attorney general Sally Yates, who alerted the White House about Flynn's conversation with Kislyak, will soon testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Russia's interference in the election.

SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM (R), SOUTH CAROLINA: We will ask her all questions about Russia, what she knew about Trump ties. Was there any administration effort to unmask people for political purposes? We're going to get to all things Russia in terms of what the administration did and what Russia did.

BROWN: And the GOP chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee says the panel wants to question Flynn.

RAJU: Is there any way you give immunity to testify?


RAJU: There's no way?


BROWN: Well, Tuesday afternoon, the Senate confirmed Rod Rosenstein. He will now oversee the Russia probe for the Department of Justice. And he has told senators on Capitol Hill, this is according to Senator Chuck Schumer, that he will appoint a special prosecutor if he feels it's necessary -- Pamela Brown, CNN, Washington.


VAUSE: Live to Moscow now and CNN's Diana Magnay.

So, Diana, what more do we know about this event, which was hosted by Russian state television, known as RT, why was the Russian president, Vladimir Putin, there that night?

And why was Michael Flynn seated next to him?

DIANA MAGNAY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, this was the 10th anniversary of RT, Russia Today, President Putin was there because this is a Kremlin sponsored channel and he was giving the keynote speech, saying -- congratulating the channel on 10 years of what he said was unbiased and independent reporting, which, of course, will raise many eyebrows, particularly with reference to, for example, the channel's reporting in Eastern Ukraine, which President Putin singled out for praise in his speech.

And of course it was therefore a major propaganda coup for the Russian president to have such a senior figure as Mike Flynn from the U.S. intelligence community at this event and sitting at the top table next to him.

And Michael Flynn had been asked to give an address in front of people, an interview with one of the RT anchors, Sofie Shevardnadze (ph) and that was why he was there.

VAUSE: OK. It's been widely reporting now that Michael Flynn was paid about $45,000 for that speech. But it seems he may have had to take a pay cut to get the job in the first place?

MAGNAY: Well, that's right, there is the email exchange from a representative of RT, which has gone before the House committee, and which CNN has reviewed, which said that apparently RT had said that the price that Mike Flynn and the speakers' bureau was asking for was a bit too high.

So actually, it was brought down to the $45,000 that we now know it was, which -- of which I might Flynn himself received $33,000 and the rest went to the bureau.

So clearly the asking price initially was far higher. And when Michael Flynn was asked on his security clearance to reveal any engagements above $5,000, he did not say how much. He just writes that he had attended this RT (INAUDIBLE).

VAUSE: Interesting details there, Diana, thank you so much, Diana Magnay there live in Moscow.

Well, the House and Senate Intelligence Committees are leading congressional investigations into the Trump campaign's Russian connections. But they're not the only ones. It's a little confusing so let's take a look at some of the other investigations.

The House Oversight Committee, they're the ones revealing the new information which we heard about Michael Flynn and the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Crime and Terrorism will hear from the former director of national intelligence, James Clapper, early next month.

The Senate Intel Committee has hired two new staff members to address some concerns the investigation there was actually moving too slowly -- Isha.

SESAY: Thanks, John.

Well, a federal judge in California has dealt President Trump's immigration agenda another major setback. He halted Mr. Trump's executive order to cut federal funding to so-called sanctuary cities, saying that could cause immediate, irreparable harm.

Earlier, the mayor of Los Angeles told CNN's Anderson Cooper that the president could not hold his or other cities hostage.


ERIC GARCETTI, LOS ANGELES MAYOR: This was not the 9th Circuit going bananas. This is the words of Chief Justice Roberts being echoed back, that the 10th Amendment is something sacred and you can't put a fiscal gun to the head of cities and threaten to take out the way our talks always (ph) --


GARCETTI: -- because you do not like the way we do our business.


SESAY: The White House calls the ruling "an egregious overreach" by a single unelected district judge.

With less than two weeks to go before voters choose the next French president, Marine Le Pen tries a new tactic to gain supporters. She's walking away from her far right party.

VAUSE: Plus a matchmaking site turned one woman's life into a living hell. Her new husband led her right into ISIS territory in Syria.



(SPORTS) [02:00:00]

SESAY: In less than two weeks French voters will return to the polls to decide between centrist Emmanuel Macron or the far right's Marine Le Pen. Opinion polls predict Macron will easily win the runoff but Le Pen is trying to broaden her appeal. She insists she is not the candidate of the National Front but that the party supports her.

VAUSE: Melissa Bell joins us now live from Paris with more on her interview with Le Pen.

And, Melissa, that is an interesting strategy, to walk away from the party that she was leading. Some have called this just a bit of clever marketing strategy.

MELISSA BELL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It is a sign, a measure, certainly, of how tense this campaign is becoming, how desperate she is --


BELL: -- to broaden her appeal. The fact that she did don't come first in the first round, that she had expected to, is, of course, the disappointment to Marine Le Pen since that populist wave was what she believed would carry her to the Elysee.

Now of course in the second round of voting, it's much harder for a candidate like Marine Le Pen, the French tend to vote less with their heart in the second round than with their heads. And there are many people who are going to rally around Emmanuel Macron perhaps reluctantly simply to keep her out of power.

Still, she believes she can do it. Last night on French television, the point of the show was to imagine what Marine Le Pen as president would sound like. Have a listen.


MARINE LE PEN, PRESIDENT, NATIONAL FRONT (through translator): What is happening is certainly a revolt against elites. The people get the feeling that the elite have been working for their own personal interests and that they have forgotten the huge responsibility that they have got in regard to the people.

And so people are saying we want to take back power. We don't trust the elite anymore. We need to take back the power and we want to be sovereign once again. And that's probably what happened with Brexit and probably what happened with the election of Donald Trump, whose campaign was conducted in extremely difficult circumstances because he was confronted by a wall which was almost impenetrable.

Media access, fingers and the formers (ph) were all against him. Everything that makes up the oligarchy. This distrust is now spreading right across Europe.

BELL: You're right. But it is spreading throughout Europe and that's something we've been following very closely. And indeed, in the run- up to this first round, we felt this anger building in France and got the feeling that you could, in fact, succeed.

Your difficulty now, though, in the run-up to the second round is that you will have to convince the other parts of the French electorate, 50 percent of them, that you are not the candidate of anger and that you can bring them together around a single common project. What is your strategy?

LE PEN (through translator): Just look at how our president of the republic has been behaving in relation to other countries as well as those people immediately around him, of which, of course, Mr. Macron is one, because he is the candidate of Hollande.

I have never seen such an attitude as this. And completely level- headed and clear in this respect, I am absolutely against double standards and for a multipolar world. I think that what the nations of the world cannot put up with are double standards.

The French are often reproached for their arrogance and for giving lessons to other people. I don't have that vision at all. I want a peaceful relationship with all the nations, with the United States, with Russia and with the U.K.

What have seen over the last couple of months?

We've seen the U.S. president more or less insulted by the president of France. Those who voted for Brexit insulted as well and for Russia, well, I don't even want to say how the president of France talks about Russia.

This means that we're at war with everyone, with Poland, whom we call all kinds of names; with the Greeks. But I don't have that vision at all. Once again, I believe that I am the candidate who is capable of having absolutely peaceful relations with all the nations of the world because what nations want is respect. Everyone wants to be respected and that goes for the French as well.

Their way of life, their choices, their identity, that's exactly the policy which will be mine.


BELL: I asked her also about her proximity to Moscow. She went to the Russian capital last month and she wants closer ties with Russia. I put to her that this was a country that was accused of intervening in American and French elections, that was seeking to weaken the Western alliance.

She said that this had yet to be proven. And what the French press is full of this morning after that program last night is that this is a woman who is looking and sounding more and more like Donald Trump, both in her style and in the substance of what she has to say.

VAUSE: The similarities are striking. Melissa, thank you, Melissa Bell live this hour in Paris.

SESAY: Trump is on her first political trip abroad since joining her father's administration. The White House adviser is at a women's summit in Berlin at the invitation of German Chancellor Angela Merkel. She joined some of the most powerful women in the world on the stage Tuesday.

But she was booed when she tried defending her father's record on women's rights.


IVANKA TRUMP, TRUMP WHITE HOUSE ADVISOR: He's been a tremendous champion of supporting families and enabling them to thrive in the new reality --


MODERATOR: You hear the reaction from the audience.

I. TRUMP: I've certainly heard the criticism from the media and that's been perpetuated.


SESAY: Away from politics now and --


SESAY: -- Facebook says that it's removed video that reportedly showed a man in Thailand killing his 11-month-old daughter. Two videos were posted on the man's Facebook page for about 24 hours before they were taken down.

He reportedly killed himself after killing his daughter.

The girl's mother and other family members attended the baby's funeral on Tuesday. It's the second tragedy on Facebook's watch this month. Last week a man in Ohio fatally shot a random passerby then posted a video of the shooting.

The Fitbit fitness tracker may be the key to solving a U.S. murder case. Richard Debaye (ph) claimed a masked intruder killed his wife, Connie, inside the Connecticut home in 2015.

But police say Connie's Fitbit shows she was still walking around after her husband claimed she was murdered. He is now charged with murder, tampering with evidence and making a false statement.

Time for a quick break. "STATE OF AMERICA's" Kate Bolduan is coming up next. For our viewers in Asia.

And for everyone else, the Trump administration's sending a message to its neighbor to the north, no more Mr. Nice Guy. The trade smackdown over Canadian lumber. That's next.

SESAY: Plus we'll introduce to a woman who thought she was going on vacation with her husband and ended up in the heart of ISIS territory in Syria.



JOHN VAUSE, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): Welcome back, everybody. You're watching NEWSROOM LA. I'm John Vause.

ISHA SESAY, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): And I'm Isha Sesay. The headlines this hour:


SESAY: Now Donald Trump is approaching his 100th day in office with the lowest level of support of any modern U.S. president. Still, he's retaining strong support from his base. An ABC "Washington Post" polls found 96 percent of people who said they voted for him would do so again. CNN's Martin Savidge traveled to states that supported Mr. Trump in the election and spoke with some of them.



MARTIN SAVIDGE, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Ashville, Alabama, the sun's been up for three hours and Greg Weston's been up for six. He's a farmer. What he grows, he and his wife, Brandi, sell on an old gas station on the edge of town.

Around here, the only thing redder than the 'maters is the politics. The county where Greg and Brandi live voting 89 percent for Trump.

SAVIDGE (on camera): How do you think Trump is doing?

GREG WESTON, FARMER: I think he's doing good.

SAVIDGE (voice-over): They like Trump even though his first actions haven't helped really them. Trump's tough immigration talk has made it harder for Greg to find migrant workers to harvest his crops.

G. WESTON: (INAUDIBLE) you're in trouble.

SAVIDGE: Then, there's Trump's efforts to replace ObamaCare, which Greg and Brandi are on.

SAVIDGE (on camera): Why do you like about -- why do you like it?

G. WESTON: Well, I pay $88 a month for me and my wife, where I was like, before ObamaCare come in, I spent like $660.

SAVIDGE (voice-over): ObamaCare is working so well, Brandi feels guilty. She says she knows people who can't afford their private insurance or they can't get insurance at all. She's OK with Trump's efforts to replace it.

BRANDI WESTON, FARMER: It still doesn't make sense to pay so little and still the poor people get nothing.

SAVIDGE (on camera): You think you should pay more?

B. WESTON: Yes. In other words, yes.

SAVIDGE (voice-over): In Birmingham, it's also another long day for Quinton Posey, a cab driver. In the past, he's voted Democratic. But in 2016, voted Trump.

QUINTON POSEY, TAXI DRIVER: The thing about a businessman is there is action and it's not policy.

SAVIDGE: Black Trump voters are rare in the South, only about 9 percent. Quinton's even more rare since he is black and gay.

SAVIDGE (on camera): One hundred days in, how do you feel he's done?

POSEY: One hundred days in, I'm not pleased.

SAVIDGE: Really?

POSEY: I'm not pleased.

SAVIDGE: What don't you like?

POSEY: He's a little too brash. Is that the word?

SAVIDGE (voice-over): Quinton hasn't seen as much change as he expected and he worries about what a Trump budget might cut.

SAVIDGE (on camera): I mean, do you wish you hadn't voted for him?

POSEY: I don't wish I had because -- I mean, according to the alternatives, I don't have any regrets.

SAVIDGE: Right, you were not going to vote for Clinton?

POSEY: I'm not going to vote for Clinton.

SAVIDGE (voice-over): In Des Moines, Iowa, I find another surprise named Alberto Alejandre, a 32-year-old public school teacher who teaches Spanish to inner city kids.

SAVIDGE (on camera): Who did you vote for this go around?


SAVIDGE (voice-over): Born in Mexico, he became an American through an amnesty program in the '80s. Yet voted for a president who has called Mexicans criminals and threatens mass deportations.

ALEJANDRE: Here we are, 100 days after he was sworn in and he has not acted against innocent, undocumented workers.

SAVIDGE (voice-over): Some would disagree but what's certain is that Alberto feels good about the administration so far, including on immigration.

ALEJANDRE: Being in America, to begin with, isn't a right. It's a great privilege.

SAVIDGE: Madison County, Iowa, famous for its bridges and home to a man many people feel personifies America, John Wayne.

Brian Downes knew the dude and found similar qualities in the Donald when he met Trump at a campaign event.

BRIAN DOWNES, TRUMP VOTER: Meeting him, that made a huge difference. Yes, made a huge difference, because he's somebody who we really felt like one of us. I had that feeling.

SAVIDGE: The big campaign issue for Brian was the same as Alberto.

DOWNES: Borders, immigration and I think that national security is all part of that.

SAVIDGE: And like Alberto, Brian is pleased by Trump so far.

DOWNES: I think he's doing great.

SAVIDGE: And he also admits that Trump's had to deal with a bit of a learning curve.

DOWNES: And he has as much has admitted, I didn't know it was going to be this complicated.

SAVIDGE (voice-over): From the birthplace of John Wayne, to a scene right out of --


SAVIDGE (voice-over): -- the Old West.

John Platini's (ph) family has been raising buffalos since the '60s. Today, the Durham ranch has more than 3,000.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They're a great story. I mean, they have a great comeback story, you know?

SAVIDGE: Wyoming may be the Cowboy State but here, coal is king.

But a King Kong scale, Wyoming produces 40 percent of America's coal, dwarfing West Virginia and Kentucky. There's also oil, natural gas and wind.

MAYOR LOUISE CARTER-KING, GILLETTE, WYOMING: We are the energy capital of the nation.

SAVIDGE: Here, if you're not mining or drilling, you're selling to those who do. This past election, only one issue really mattered: jobs and energy. Yes, that's two but in Wyoming, they're one and the same.

Jeff Dale runs a business running industrial generators. He voted for Trump saying Democrats were anti-energy.

JEFF DALE, BASIN ELECTRIC POWER: The path that we were on was definitely crippling this industry. So there are too many regulations and too many hurdles.

SAVIDGE: That could explain why Wyoming was the reddest state of all. Michael Wandler's family owned business has been repairing monster size mining machinery for decades. He voted for Trump and says things have been improving ever since.

MIKE WANDLER, L & H INDUSTRIAL INC.: Business is better now. We had our worst year since 2008 last year. It's better now. We feel like it's going to be 10 percent better, maybe 20 percent better this year.

STACEY MOELLER, COAL MINER: A spot at the table.

SAVIDGE: Stacey Moeller is a single parent, a grandmother and a coal miner. She operates a P&H 4100 electric shovel, that's larger than her house.

SAVIDGE (on camera): One mistake and you really could do a lot of damage.

MOELLER: Yes, yes. We don't make mistakes.

SAVIDGE (voice-over): She also voted for Trump, even though she was reviled by his words and actions toward women.

MOELLER: And I was offended by his words about women but it was not about me. It was about the people I work with and the people I love. And I had to make a choice that was bigger than me, so I did.

SAVIDGE: For Stacey and all the voters I talked with, Trump was not a perfect candidate and is not a perfect president. They voted for him believing he would make their lives better and 100 days later, they still do -- Martin Savidge, CNN, Wyoming.


SESAY: Fascinating insight there.

The U.S. just lost a trade battle with Mexico over tuna. The World Trade Organization ruled that Mexico can impose sanctions with $163 million a year against the U.S. by unfairly penalizing the Mexican tuna industry over its fishing practices.

The ruling comes at a sensitive time since President Trump wants to renegotiate NAFTA, the free trade agreement between the U.S., Mexico and Canada.

SESAY: The Trump administration has managed to anger its neighbor to the north, the usually polite, friendly, mild-mannered Canadians are upset over U.S. slapping tariffs of up to 24 percent on Canadian lumber, the kind used to build houses.

Mr. Trump accused Canada of subsidizing his lumber industry.


DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: People don't Canada's been very rough on the United States. Everyone thinks of Canada's as wonderful and so do I. I love Canada. But they've outsmarted our politicians for many years and you people understand that.

So we did institute a very big tariff.


SESAY: Previous U.S. administrations have worked out temporary fixes but this time it could be different. Homebuilders Association says the tariffs will raise the cost of new homes in the United States by about $3,000 apiece. Canada says it will fight.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We are absolutely prepared to and we will and we are strongly defending our producers, strongly defending Canadian jobs. You know, we're nice guys, politeness is something that we believe is a natural -- is a national virtue. But it's not an accident that hockey is our national sport.


VAUSE: Mr. Trump and the Canadian prime minister, Justin Trudeau, talked about the issue on Tuesday. The White House says the call was very amicable.

SESAY: Turkey says airstrikes by its military neutralized 70 fighters it considers terrorists. Members of the Kurdish Workers Party in Iraq but two other Kurdish groups back by the U.S. say the raids killed more than 20 of their fighters. The Pentagon says it's concerned Turkey did not get approval for the strikes.

VAUSE: A woman who met her husband on a dating website thought they were going on vacation. But instead, she wound up in the heart of ISIS territory in Syria. Ben Wedeman reports.


BEN WEDEMAN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): A steady stream of civilians is fleeing Raqqa as the news tightens on ISIS' de facto capital. And it's not just Syrians leaving the city. It's also those who came some against their will --


WEDEMAN (voice-over): -- to live in the so-called caliphate.

Twenty-three-year-old Islam Mitat from Morocco has found refuge with her two small children at a guest house run by the YPG, the U.S.- backed Kurdish force fighting ISIS in Northeast Syria.

Her journey to Syria started more than three years ago with a visit to an online Muslim match-making site, where she met her future husband, Ahmed Khalil, British national of Afghan origin.

ISLAM MITAT, FORMER ISIS WIFE: He was in Dubai and he told me he have job in Turkey, so he told me to come with me, he is going to do his job and we go to for holiday, too, me and him.

WEDEMAN: The "holiday" her husband had in mind however, was in Syria.

MITAT: It's a surprise to go to Syria. So, when we went, when I told him why he didn't ask me, why he didn't take my own decision, so I will not come or not. So he told me, no, you're my wife and you have to obey me.

WEDEMAN: They crossed from Turkey into Syria with others like her and ended up in a special guest house for Muhajireen, those who moved to ISIS' realm.

MITAT: From U.K. from Tunisia, Algeria and Morocco, Canada, Belgium, France, all the world, everyone is there, Saudi Arabia.

WEDEMAN: Soon afterwards, her husband, Ahmed, was killed in the battle of Kobani. She was forced to remarry a German this time, but she divorced in two months later.

She married a third time, an Australian, and moved to Raqqa, where she stayed for two years.

MITAT: Honestly I forget my normal life. And there is the situation in the last month, the situation in Raqqa it's so bad like the bombs of the coalitions and stuff like this. It's so bad. And sometimes there's no electricity and water and it's not too much food.

WEDEMAN: In Raqqa, she had one thing in mind: escape.

MITAT: Like for two years I'm asking people to help me, but everyone like someone ask me like too much money. They ask me like too much money, like more than $5,000 like that.

WEDEMAN: Eventually she did manage to escape but is now in limbo. Her Kurdish host contacted the Moroccan government and her father through this report is hoping Morocco's King Mohammed VI will intercede. Islam wants to return to Morocco but worries about the future of her family.

MITAT: I don't know where I will go. I don't know because now my life is destroyed.

WEDEMAN: Holiday in Syria turned to hell -- Ben Wedeman, CNN.


SESAY: Time for a quick break now. Still ahead, a U.S.-led search for a brutal Uganda warlord winds down. What this could mean for the security of the region -- next.





SESAY: After 11 years, the U.S.-led search for rebel warlord Joseph Kony is coming to an end. Kony leads the Lord's Resistance Army known for brutality that includes kidnapping children to use them as sex slaves. He's wanted for war crimes and crimes against humanity.

For more than 25 years, the rebel group tried and failed to overthrow Uganda's government. Although Kony has not been found, Ugandan officials say the number of his followers has dwindled.

Well, CNN's Farai Sevenzo joins me now live from Nairobi.

Farai, good to have you with us. So Kony's numbers may have dwindled but there's still the issue of the need for justice and accountability for the crimes he's committed.

So why is this decision being made now at this point?

FARAI SEVENZO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Isha, you're absolutely. There's an open-ended question here. But what happened to the man who was responsible for the kidnapping of hundreds of thousands of children?

Now you talk about them being used as slaves, sex slaves. But his influence in the region was much more insidious and terrible than that. People had their lips cut off. Children were ordered to go back to their villages and kill their parents.

At the moment, we know that at midnight on the 26th of April, the United States' mission, which was sanctioned by President Obama in 2011, to take Kony out of the battlefield have themselves left the battlefield, saying that he has no longer any followers and he has become an irrelevance.

Just about five minutes ago before we spoke, I spoke to Brigadier General Richard Carnieri (ph) of the Ugandan Defense Forces and they are leaving in May as well. They say that, since 2008, when he had about 5,000 followers, Kony's followers have now been reduced to only under less than 100.

But the question, as you say, remains. What happens to the man responsible for all this carnage all throughout East Africa?

Remember, it's not just Uganda that he attacked. He was in the Central African Republic. He was in South Sudan. And he was also in the Congo. Wherever there was chaos, that's where he thought it was appropriate to hide himself.

SESAY: And Farai, Uganda, as you mentioned, withdrawing their troops from the Central African Republic, the troops that were involved in the hunt for Kony, saying he no longer poses a threat to Uganda.

But broadly speaking, what about the rest of the region?

Does he no longer pose a threat to the rest of the region?

SEVENZO: Isha, his modus operandi has always been the same, whether he's in Uganda, the Central African Republic or South Sudan, he attacks village after village and kidnaps the children.

We're talking about kids aged between 10 and 15 because those are the minds that were most malleable to his intentions of taking over Uganda. And they were ordered to do terrible violent acts.

At the moment, we know that the African mission in the African Union, I beg your pardon, are trying that this is still hunting down. The Ugandans are adamant. But the hunt for him is not over. He must face justice.

And of course the federal Afghan republic army is also after him. But let's not forget, the region since 2008, all those years ago, has completely changed. We have crisis after crisis in the Congo, in the Central African Republic. And indeed, South Sudan itself is no longer stable.

So the hunt for him is probably still going to go on because he affects so many countries -- Isha.

SESAY: Yes, he certainly does. Farai Sevenzo joining us there from Nairobi, Farai, really appreciate it. Thank you.

VAUSE: So we'll take a short break and when we come back, why did the rhino join Tinder?

Why does anyone join Tinder?






VAUSE: One of the world's most eligible bachelors is now on the dating app Tinder. He is literally one-of-a-kind.

SESAY: Yes, he is. And if he doesn't find love, we may not see another like him ever again. Our Michael Holmes explains.


MICHAEL HOLMES, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): He's horny and looking for love. Now desperate to find a mate, this endangered animal just joined Tinder. This is Sudan, posing with Masai tribesmen in their cricket gear. He is something of a celebrity in Kenya.

That's because he is the very last male Northern white rhino on the planet. Conservationists are trying to change that using the popular dating app, hoping users will swipe right to save the species.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's going to (INAUDIBLE) in 190 countries and in 40 languages, which is really the first time Tinder does something like that.

HOLMES (voice-over): "I don't mean to be too forward but the fate of my species literally depends on me," Sudan's Tinder profile reads.

"I perform well under pressure. I like to eat grass and chill in the mud."

And it seems Sudan needs help. All previous efforts to mate naturally with his two female rhino companions failed. Now the Kenyan Conservancy hopes to raise enough money to pay for a very expensive fertilization treatment.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (INAUDIBLE) long way to go and this is a 10, possibly even a 15 programs (ph) to recover the species.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And we estimate that it will cost somewhere in the region of $9 million to $10 million.

HOLMES (voice-over): Tinder could help them get there, swiping right on Sudan's profile sends users to a donation page. Just hours after it went online, it was so popular it crashed the Conservancy's website.

But Sudan's handlers are cautious. They say the rhino is getting old and he faces the ever-present threat of poachers. They're hoping Tinder can help the world's most eligible rhino bachelor find a match before it is too late -- Michael Holmes, CNN.


SESAY: Who knew, John?


SESAY: -- bring so much joy.

VAUSE: Well, it's a great story, it's a great idea but (INAUDIBLE) tragic that it's got to this place right now and there's just one white rhino male left in the world?


SESAY: It is, it is. Let's hope that Tinder does some good.

VAUSE: Yes. All right.

SESAY: All right.

You're watching CNN NEWSROOM live from Los Angeles. I'm Isha Sesay.

VAUSE: I'm John Vause. Please stay with us. The news continues with Rosemary Church after a short break.