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U.K. To Review Its Counter Terror Strategy; Trump Eases Rhetoric On London Attack; Trump Pushing $1 Trillion Infrastructure Plan; Facebook Vows To Be 'Hostile' To Terrorists. Aired 3-3:30a ET

Aired June 5, 2017 - 03:00   ET



[03:00:13] THERESA MAY, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: It is time to say enough is enough. Our society should continue to function in accordance with our values. But when it comes to take on extremism and terrorism things need to change.


CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN ANCHOR: A new battle cry from the British prime minister. How will the U.K. shift its approach to fighting terror after this another attack, the third attack in 10 week? New raids overnight, EARLY START has live coverage beginning right now.

Good morning, everyone, welcome to Early Start. I'm Christine Romans.

DAVE BRIGGS, CNN ANCHOR: And I'm Dave Briggs. It is Monday, June 5th, 3:00 a.m. in the east.

This morning, a major reset in London's war on terror, Prime Minister Theresa May calling for a sweeping review of Britain's counter terrorism strategy. Her vow to ramp up the country's terror response comes on a wake of a deadly new attack in the U.K., the third in three months, the second in its many weeks.

Over night, police conducting new raids in East London detaining a number of people on top of a dozen already arrested.

ROMANS: At least seven people were killed, 48 others injured in this rampage, at least 20 are still in critical condition here. ISIS has claimed responsibility but offered no evidence to back that up. Britain's General election will go on as scheduled on Thursday, now, again to backdrop of heightened concern over terrorism.

For the very latest, I want to bring CNN's Frederik Pleitgen. He's live in London for us. Good morning, Fred, bring it up to speed.

FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Christine. Yes. Good morning. You're absolutely right. There were raids once again over night here, especially in the eastern part of London, the district of Barking where as you've said, the authorities say that they had detained a number of people for questioning. That's really a pattern that we've seen ever since this new attack took place. There were also some pretty big raids that took place in pretty much the same area yesterday with some 12 people being detained there, 11 of them remained in custody.

And you're absolutely right, the British Prime Minister, Theresa May has come out and said that there will be a major review of this country's counter terrorism strategy. She also praised the authorities especially the police and emergency response services for very, very quick. One of the things that we have to point out is that from the moment they got the first call that this attack was taking place to a moment that the police gunned down the attacker which is only eight minutes, so very, very fast response by the authorities.

Nevertheless, the prime minister said four things need to change in the war on terror. I'm going to list a four. She said the pluralistic British values must defeat Islamist extremism. Democratic governments must regulate cyber space, so obviously a war in cyber space as well. Military action to destroy ISIS abroad, less tolerance of extremism in the U.K., she said that's one of the problems that there's too much what she calls tolerism of extremism here in this country and a review all the counter terrorism strategy so police have all the powers they need.

Again, the British are saying, look, they believe they have a good counter terrorism strategy. And they also believe quite frankly that it showed in this incident as well as far as the responses concerned but at the same time they want to make a review and see whether there's anything that they can improve to make sure attacks like this one don't happen in the future after string of attacks, as you've noted, over the past 10 weeks. Christine.

ROMANS: And Fred, a hallmark of this particular attack relatively low-tech, a vehicle, three, I guess, fake suicide vests and some knives, relatively low-tech.

PLEITGEN: Yes, absolutely, relatively low-tech. And you know, it was actually one of the first reporters here on the scene after this attack took place. And I can tell you for a while especially with those fake suicide vests that did cause the police to really make a harsh response to this. When we got here, I was here about 45 minutes after the attack took place, there were still people literally running for their lives out of the area for where this happened. And the police really rushing them on saying, you have to move as fast as possible.

Nevertheless, the British authorities, the police here, had the situation under control. They were moving people quickly. But they were also in-command of the situation. And the fact that they were able to take them out so quickly certainly is remarkable.

Now, what happened is that, at least three attackers apparently in a van went onto the iconic London Bridge in that van and started mowing down people, apparently swerving from left to right. They went across the London Bridge and went to iconic Borough Market which is a place where many, many people would have been on a Saturday night, it was around 10:00 p.m. so the place was very, very full. They got out of the van and started stabbing people randomly.

And one of the other things that happened there is that people actually fought back. They went into some of the pubs there and to some of the restaurants, started stabbing people there. People fought back. Threw glasses at them, attacked them with chairs. And then the police moved on the scene very, very quickly and ended this whole thing within eight minutes.

ROMANS: Eight minutes, remarkable, that response time. All right. Frederik Pleitgen, one the first reporters on the scene there, still reporting for us. Thank you, sir.

[03:05:01] BRIGGS: Later in the program, we'll have someone who witnessed that attack, later in the show. But out of the dozens wounded in the attack 36 people still being treated at London hospitals over night, 21 of those listed in critical conditions.

For the latest on the victims and their stories, CNN's Erin McLaughlin standing by for us outside King's College Hospital in South London. Erin, good morning to you.

ERIN MCLAUGHLIN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, Dave. That's right. We're beginning to hear the tragic stories of those who died, including Christine Archibald. She was from Canada. She worked in homeless shelters there. She moved to Europe to be with her fiancee. She was killed on the London Bridge that horrific night struck by the terrorist van.

Her family releasing a statement saying that she was loving, beautiful, saying, "She would not have had no understanding of the callus cruelty that caused her -- some 14 victims being treated here at the King's College Hospital alone, including Daniel O'Neil. He's just 23 years old. He was stabbed at the Borough Market. We heard from his mother yesterday. Take a listen to what she had to say.


ELISABETH O'NEIL, MOTHER OF LONDON ATTACK VICTIM: He was in shock now. I sit to him is because, he don't believe it's happening to anyone. He thinks other people are going to find it hard. And he feels very bad that he's alive while others have died.


MCLAUGHLIN: Thirty-six people are being treated at hospitals currently across London, 21 in critical care. Dave.

BRIGGS: Erin, thank you.

ROMANS: All right, 200 miles northwest of London Bridge, emotions were raw at the One Love Manchester concert hosted by Ariana Grande. At her concert two weeks ago, a suicide bomber of course killed 22 people, many of them, children. The youngest was an eight-years-old after that concert. Last night, with the world watching, the young popstar made a defiant return delivering a touching tribute to the victims.




ROMANS: And live in Manchester we're bringing CNN's Phil Black. Phil, it's just such a moving tribute there.

PHIL BLACK, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDET: Yes, Christine, it really was, on any day anywhere in the world, this would have been a pretty amazing concert just because of the line up. It wasn't just Ariana Grande. It was Katie Perry, Miley Cyrus, Justin Bieber, Pharrell Williams, Coldplay. But this was Manchester just mentioned two weeks after an apparent suicide bomber attacked some of Grande's fans and their parents killing 22 people, including 7 children. And yet 50,000 people still turned out for this event, many of them people who were at Grande's original concert, people who had heard the blast and experienced the panic. As you can expect this was hugely emotional.

There was some sorrow. But overwhelmingly, it was a pretty joyful celebration of those who were lost. But also a very powerful rejection of the type of violence that has taken and traumatized lives here in Manchester but of course now in London, as well.

Outside, there was huge security operation keeping all of those people safe. They were police everywhere including heavily armed police ready for the worst should someone try and disturb this. And everyone who went to that event were searched individually. But it all went incredibly smoothly. It was a very successful emotional event and one that is believed to have raised millions of dollars for the people affected by the terrorism here at Manchester. Christine.

ROMANS: All right. Phil Black for us, thank you so much for that. Just a remarkable -- I don't know if you watched some of the clips (ph) last night --

BRIGGS: I did, indeed.

ROMANS: And then it was just really --

BRIGGS: I watched it on Twitter and emotional --

ROMANS: And it's so interesting because there was a lot of -- you can watch it live and it was fund-raising happening live as it was happening yesterday. And just, you know, you just really want to --

BRIGGS: Yes. Ariana Grande is really --

ROMANS: -- want to dissolve (ph) the people who were still proud and brave to go out there.

BRIGGS: Indeed. All right. With the latest on all of this, we bring in two counter terror experts, Sajan Gohel, he's the international security director for the Asia Pacific Foundation. He joins us live via Skype from London. Here in New York, CNN law enforcement analyst, James Gagliano, retired FBI, supervisory, special agent and adjunct professor at St. John's University. Sajan, let's start with you there in London. There is a consensus that things do need to change and that's what Theresa May said over the weekend. What's the first thing that needs to change? Because before all of this it was thought that the U.K. was particularly difficult to attack, and how they secured it, how they secure the border and the surveillance. What's the first thing that needs to change?

SAJAN GOHEL, INTERNATIONAL SECURITY DIR., ASIA PACIFIC FOUNDATION: Well, it's an important question that's being raised because in many ways our counter terrorism agencies, the police have done a very good job in foiling and disrupting many plots. There have been several this year alone. The challenge is on now that you are looking at terrorist using what ISIS calls adjust terror tactics, basically, turning a car into a lethal weapon or carrying out multiple knife attacks.

[03:10:10] Now, how does one stop those types of attacks? So how does one preempted the way the prime minister seems to be talking is looking at the ideology having the ability to counter the radicalization efforts using -- how they use social media and modern technology to induct a young trustable (ph) people. So, the internet seems to be the starting point because we've seen in the past that you don't necessarily have to have physical network to recruit people. ISIS can use a virtual network.

ROMANS: You know, Sajan, I have to say though, she talks about Democratic governments who must regulate cyber space. But when you talk to law enforcement officials of different countries, they feel as though that's been slow to come, that the idea that free speech can be weaponized is something that's been exploited by terrorist and that, you know, civil societies has been very slow to try to address.

GOHEL: The process has been slow. To some extent, some of the social media companies have been working with governments to try and bring down sites that have been hijacked by radicals and extremist. But in actual treadmill you can bring down one site and the terrorist will find another place. And we also haven't spoken about the dark web, how the terrorist use the dark web to communicate, to plot and plan, and that's effectively the wild west of the internet.


GOHEL: So, one can make some progress. But I don't think we're going to entirely achieve what the true objectives are to try and stop the internet from being ransacked by terrorists.

BRIGGS: All right, James, let's bring you in here in New York. Now, regulating cyber space is clearly an enormous task. The police force doing a terrific job, how would you begin to regulate cyber space?

JAMES GAGLIANO, CNN LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST: Dave, I think the former FBI director James Comey spoke to this recently in that battle, that epic battle with apple. There is the -- going dark initiative which these companies, these technology companies are able to encrypt from end to end their communication services. And we can't access it. And while you've got a way things along, the continuum of civil liberties in keeping us safe, where do you want to fall down along that line in the west?. I mean, the U.K. is experiencing this right now.

It literally is a case of a whack-a-mole. Ten weeks, three different terror attacks and none of the cells are connected. That's a sobering, sobering thought.

ROMANS: Regulate in cyber space that is a sobering thought in general too because, you know, free speech is something that western civilization, you know, it's the oxygen of questions of really to have that information weaponized, we need to be so careful how you attack that.

Let me ask you something, James, about the vehicle, the vehicle attacks. We just had one here in New York. It was not a terrorist attack but it does show you how difficult it is to protect people in crowded in a, you know, metro area. How concerned are you about the vehicle attacks and how that is a pretty low cost of entry for a terrorist or crazy person to be able to hurt a lot of people?

GALAGLIANO: Absolutely. Christine, it's one of those things that keeps us up at night. I mean, look at Britain. It's a place -- they don't have the second amendment. So, there's not a proliferation of guns. But it's easy to get a knife and obviously it's very easy to get a weapon. What I think we are, are so blessed about in this particular terror incident, every life obviously is a tragedy, but if you recall in Niece, just a while back in Niece, a guy in a truck was able to kill 86 people.



GAGLIANO: So, the fact that this casualty count is so low, I think a big part of that credit goes to the police --

ROMANS: Eight minutes.

GAGLIANO: As a former FBI SWAT team leader and hostage rescue team member, I can tell you, the first responders are really what's keeping us safe right now because the British couldn't marshall Special Air Service to come and resolve this.

BRIGGS: And this is a city where police are often unarmed. Sajan, we want to finish with you. And now, three attacks in 10 weeks. There's a question of what is it about the U.K. that makes it horrible to so much radicalization, these types of attacks?

GOHEL: Three attacks in a few weeks, as you mentioned, down fell (ph), so forget the fight plots that the authorities have disrupted. We are facing now an onslaught. As ISIS continues to lose territory in Iraq and Syria, it wants to try and show that it retains power, that is has the ability to command and control terrorist plots. And effectively it's this kind death cult mentality. They are going to go out. If they are going to be dismantled they want to take as many people with them as possible. France experienced it two years ago, Belgium and Germany last year. Now, tragically I'm afraid it seems to be our turn. But I also want to praise our police because they've done a great job in foiling plots. And as was mentioned, the fact that they could react within eight minutes on the scene to the London attack, just shows you how much work they're putting in to foil terrorist activity.

ROMANS: All right. Sajan Gohel, thank you so much for dropping by this morning in a really important story. James you're going to stick with us throughout the morning as we continue to analyze the events that happened this weekend in London.

[03:15:04] Meanwhile, President Trump with a big shift in tone.


DONALD TRUMP, U.S. PRESIDENT: I will do what is necessary to prevent this threat from spreading to our shores, and work every single day to protecting the safety and security of our country.


ROMANS: Protecting the safety and security of our country after using the attack to justify his travel ban, that's next.



TRUMP: We renew our resolve stronger than ever before, to protect the United States and its allies from any vile enemy that has waged war on innocent life and its gone on too long. This bloodshed must end. This bloodshed will end.


BRIGGS: President Trump adapting a much more diplomatic tone last night after he came under heavy criticism for his initial response to the London terror attack. The president using the attack to call for reinstatement of his travel ban now blocked by courts, he tweeted, "We need to be smart, vigilant and tough. We need the courts to give us back our rights. We need the travel ban as an extra level of safety."

[03:20:08] On Thursday the Trump administration asked the Supreme Court to allow the band to go into effect while the courts consider its legality.

ROMANS: The president followed his controversial first tweet with supported message offering U.S. help to Britain. But it wasn't long before he was back on the offensive calling out the mayor of London Sadiq Khan for saying this --


SADIQ KHAN, MAYOR OF LONDON: London, as we'll see an increased police presence today and over the course of the next few days. No reason to be alarmed. One of the things the police and all of us needs to do is make sure we're safe as we possibly can be.


ROMANS: OK. So that's what the mayor of London said with that phrase, no reason to be alarmed set off the president of the United States. He returned to Twitter. He slammed Mayor Khan, "At least seven dead and 48 wounded in terror attack and the mayor of London says there is no reason to be alarmed."

BRIGGS: The mayor spokesman pushing back sharply. "The mayor is busy working with the police emergency services and government to coordinate the response to this horrific and cowardly terrorist attack. He has more important things to do than respond to Donald Trump's ill-informed tweet."

ROMANS: Finally weighing yesterday, he made of course criticism. There's a lot of criticism over the president's response at the acting ambassador to Great Britain, the U.S. ambassador to Great Britain stepping in writing, "I commend the strong leadership of the mayor of London as he leads this city forward after this heinous attack."

BRIGGS: President Trump planning a series of White House event and a trip to Ohio this week to launches $1 trillion infrastructure improvement campaign. Well kick things off later this morning. In the east room, the president and his staff hoping to take the focus of potentially damaging testimony from James Comey on Thursday.

The fired FBI director expected to tell the Senate Committee whether the president tried to interfere with the bureau of Russia and investigation. CNN will have live coverage of Comey's testimony beginning at 9:00 a.m. eastern Thursday morning. EARLY START will be especially early once again Thursday and Friday morning that's beginning at 3:00 a.m. eastern time.

ROMANS: Yes. That is the main event this week --

BRIGGS: Indeed.

ROMANS: -- on Capitol Hill.

Prime Minister Theresa May, says tougher rules online will prevent terrorism.


MAY: We need to work with allied democratic government to react international agreements that regulates cyber space to prevent the spread of extremist and terrorism planning.


ROMANS: So, how are tech companies responding? We've got that next.


[03:25:56] ROMANS: All right Facebook vows to be, "Hostile to terrorist" after the U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May blames tech companies in part for helping to foster terrorism.


MAY: We cannot allow this ideology the safe space it needs to breathe. Yet that is precisely what the internet and big companies that provide internet based services provide.


ROMANS: She wants tougher regulations for cyber space and many governments criticize tech companies for how they handle terrorist threat especially in their encrypted messaging services. Investigations show terrorists use online tools to coordinate attack from law enforcement on access. And they complain that it often takes a long time to get help from these big companies.

But companies like Facebook, Google and Apple they lobby against giving authorities a peek. They say it hurts the privacy of their customers not terrorist. However they condemn terrorist content on their site. Facebook says it is working aggressively to remove hate speech. Twitter also told CNN the terrorism has no place on Twitter. What these companies actually do about it, we'll be watching.

BRIGGS: Yes. This is the battlefront as we move forward.

In sports the Golden State Warriors crushing Cleveland Cavaliers 132- 113. And Game 2 the NBA finals just too much. Kevin Durant, once again, Steph Curry as well. Lebron James, a triple double in this game. But it's just not nearly enough.

First playoff, triple double for Curry's career 32, 10, 11. Durant, 33 points, 13 rebounds. Game three is win tonight and Cleveland Warriors up two games to none of its series and it seems there is nothing. They can do to get back in the series of this juncture. We shall see as it gets more interesting.

ROMANS: All right, 27 minutes passed the hour.

BRIGGS: The British prime minister not mincing words after yet another terror attack on her soil.


MAY: They are bound together by the single, evil ideology of Islamistic extremism.


BRIGGS: The prime minister laying out what needs to change in order to bring terrorists spree to stop in the U.K. We're live in London next.