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Authorities Identify Two of Three Attackers; Security Now a Major Theme of U.K. Election; Trump Twitter Storm. Aired 12-1a ET

Aired June 6, 2017 - 00:00   ET



[000006] JOHN VAUSE, CNN ANCHOR: This is CNN NEWSROOM live from Los Angeles.

Ahead this hour:

London terrorist attackers identified after a brutal attack in the heart of the city and neighbors are saying they warned police about one of them.

A top secret document about Russian hacking of the U.S. election has been leaked and the woman accused of giving it to reporters now in custody.

And President Trump's latest Twitter tirade is his own worst enemy.

Hello and welcome to our viewers all around the world. I'm John Vause. NEWSROOM L.A. starts right now.

Two of the London attackers have now been identified and authorities are facing questions about how well they can keep up with suspected extremists. On the left of your screen them Khuram Shahzad Butt, a British citizen born in Pakistan; on the right Rachid Redouane who claimed to be Moroccan and Libyan.

Meantime hundreds of people attended a vigil for the victims of the attack. And London's mayor spoke after a moment of silence.


SADIQ KHAN, MAYOR OF LONDON: As the mayor of London, I want to send a clear message to the sick and evil extremists who commit these hideous crimes. We will defeat you. You will not win. As a proud and patriotic British-Muslim I say this. You do not commit these disgusting acts in my name.


Isa Soares is at 10 Downing Street. She joins us now live. Isa -- we know more about two of the terrorists who carried out this attack. And it seems all of them were known to British intelligence.

ISA SOARES, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It does indeed. Good morning to you -- John. It's only the third we are waiting to hear -- the third attacker we know very little about.

Let me talk you through what we know regarding those two men that police shot and killed within a period of eight minutes on that tragic Saturday night.

The first one is Khuram Shahzad Butt born in Pakistan, 27 years of age from East London. We know that he recently married. He had a child as well. He worked for about six months -- John, for TFL, that's Transport for London, but recently had been working as a receptionist at a local gym.

And what we know is that he was known to authorities. He was known not only to police, but he was also known to MI5, the British intelligence services. The reason when asked by several TV networks why no one flagged him up earlier, the police basically said there was no intelligence to suggest that an attack was likely. So it's in the lowest echelon of any investigation.

Now he also belonged to a group that is linked to the radical preacher Choudary, Ahjem Choudary who has been arrested. And if we bring up the footage we have seen of him in Regents Park in Central London unfolding an ISIS flag. This is part of documentary that was shot last year which is "Jihadis Abroad". So he was well known of course, unfolding that black flag of course isn't enough to detain someone or arrest someone.

Let me tell you about the second man we're hearing. Little -- we know very little about him but we know he is 30 years of age. He is Moroccan and Libyan and he works as a chef.

These are the two men that we know from neighbors have been described -- at least in particular with Butt -- being described as quiet, keeping to himself and interestingly as well, John, having spoken to neighbors in East London in Barking basically saying -- on mother telling CNN that she had reported Butt two years ago to authorities for trying to radicalize her children.

Muslim neighbors, too have reportedly mentioned and raised concerns and alarms to authority. Why nothing has been done or there was just not enough manpower, that is, of course the question that Londoners will be asking today and the days ahead of the election.

VAUSE: Ok. Isa Soares there with the very latest details on who was behind -- at least two of the men who were behind the attack on Saturday. Thank you -- Isa.

The terror attack in London comes just days before a general election in the U.K. and it has put the issue of security front and center.

The Labour Party's Jeremy Corbyn has seriously criticized Prime Minister Theresa May of her past handling of police resources when she was Home Secretary. May has hit back strongly, defending her record.

[00:05:04] Dominic Thomas is the chair of the Department of French and Francophone Studies at UCLA. Also he's an expert on all things European. Good to see you -- Dominic. You know, it's interesting, security was not meant to be the Achilles heel for Theresa May going into this election. But now, she has to answer for her time -- a very long period of time, six years -- as Home Secretary.

DOMINIC THOMAS, UCLA DEPARTMENT OF FRENCH AND FRANCOPHONE STUDIES: Right. From 2010 to 2016 when David Cameron was essentially defeated by the Brexit vote she was the Home secretary. She was the chief law enforcement officer essentially in the United Kingdom.

So she finds herself here in a very precarious position. She was hoping the election would really be about the question of Brexit and that she would keep that to the momentum forward and with the negotiations that were about to sort of get going, capitalize on some of the success that she had. And now she's -- found herself embroiled over the past few weeks in a succession of attacks which have made it very difficult for her to position herself on these without sounding even more hypocritical than she already was on the Brexit question.

VAUSE: It's interesting too because Jeremy Corbyn, the Labour leader, he doesn't have exactly the best record when it comes to security issues either.

THOMAS: Right. And he's having to answer some of these questions, you know. Would you, yes or no, you know, sort of advocated use of police violence in shooting these attackers and so on, too?

So there as well, but she's the one right now who called the snap election. She's the one who somewhat strategically and greedily is trying to build on the majority in the House of Commons. And considering she started out, you know, with polling at sort of over 20 points, it's dropped dramatically for a multiplicity of reasons over the past few weeks.

VAUSE: And is it just the issue of security which is dragging her poll numbers down, that's making this race a lot closer than many people had expected?

THOMAS: She was a long way ahead. And I think that when she went in to this campaign she was a bit eager to protect that lead by trying to limit the extent to which she conducted a real full-on campaign.

Having said that, Jeremy Corbyn has done better than expected and has been able to talk about issues that are crucial to British people such as health care, education and so on. But having said that as well, Theresa May is meeting with Jean-Claude Juncker, the E.U. Commission president in London with a disaster which I think has demonstrated to the British people that the Brexit negotiations are going to be much tougher than expected.

And let's not forget that Donald Trump's visit to Europe did not go very well especially given the fact that he has been reluctant to sign on to the Paris Accord and his only real friend in Europe is Theresa May.

VAUSE: Right. THOMAS: And so this doesn't help either.

VAUSE: Just very quickly, you know, on Sunday -- you know, about 24 hours after the attack on Saturday. Theresa May gave a very well- received, very strong speech, called for a sweeping review of counter terrorism strategies. She also said, you know, enough is enough. It's time to act.

On reflection though, a few days out, announcing you know -- people looking at it saying well hang on, does that seem to imply that, you know, the U.K., that the British should actually set a certain level of terrorism and why didn't you do anything about it before?

THOMAS: Absolutely. I mean it's a real faux pas and I think first of all, as Prime Minister, you do expect the response but we're a few days away from a general election and so any interventions sound like political campaigning so that was inappropriate. No, absolutely not. One is too many, you know.

And so going all the way back to 2005 to the July attack up until today, this has been an important question that British society must face. And in fact, extricating themselves from the European Union is not going to help them because the coordinated intelligence network among European trusted to the partners in the European Union is something that the United Kingdome desperately needs at this moment in time.

VAUSE: Ok. Dominic -- good to speak with you. Thanks for being here tonight.

THOMAS: Thank you.

VAUSE: A federal contractor is facing some serious jail time accused of leaking information to the National Security Agency about Russia's efforts to hack the U.S. presidential election.

CNN's Jim Sciutto has details.


JIM SCIUTTO, CNN U.S. NATIONAL SECURITY CORRESPONDENT: First let's talk about this NSA document. What we know about it -- it was classified, prepared by the NSA just last month. And what it focuses on in Russian attempts to probe, probing cyber attacks of electoral systems during the election.

We knew some of this during the election that they had probes, voter election rolls, registration rolls, et cetera in Arizona, in Illinois, in Florida. This provides more details, more intelligence about those efforts, does not change the intelligence community's assessment that Russia did not change voter tallies in the election but gives more details about those efforts to probe those voting systems.

And that by itself is alarming. Whether or not it had an impact on the 2016 presidential election, I'm told consistently by intelligence community officials that Russia is certain to attack U.S. elections again.

[00:10:05] What they learned here -- could that help them attack voting systems in elections come 2018, 2020? That's possible. It's adding to their broader intelligence picture.

Let's then talk about the leaker here. 25-year-old contractor, working for the NSA, accessed this classified document, printed it out and then shared it with the reporter. That reporter then shared it with another contractor. That contractor shared it with bosses.

They were able to look at that image of the document, determined that it had been printed out because it had a crease in the image there showing that it seemed to have been folded. And then based on the small number of people who had printed out this document were able to find their way back to this leaker who now faces very serious charges.

CNN has spoken to her mother there. We know she has a court-appointed attorney but facing very serious legal challenges going forward.

Jim Sciutto, CNN -- Washington.


VAUSE: Joining me now is CNN political commentator, Democratic strategist Dave Jacobson and Republican consultant John Thomas. Thank you for being with us.

Ok. Let's start with the -- let's start with the leaks. John -- to you, it's fair game to condemn the leak.


VAUSE: But the other question is, was the White House going to tell us that the NSA actually have proof that Russia actually did hack the voting systems.

J. Thomas: That's a good question. I mean I don't know their internal strategy. I think at some point they should have announced it probably once the whole Russia investigation was complete.

It's not surprising though that in a phishing scheme you cast a wide net, right. I mean you can't rely upon one stupid person like John Podesta whose password was "password" to take the bait. You have to go to a lot of people.

So, I don't -- I'm not shocked by this. I'm more shocked by the stupidity of the leaker because typically when they leak they don't hand physical things to reporters. It's all verbally done.

VAUSE: It was sort of amateur hour I guess in one respect. But Dave -- where does this leave the President and his claims that, you know, Russia tried to interfere in the election, that's just fake news?

DAVE JACOBSON, DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST: Right. Well I think it really does beg the question of like whether or not the Trump administration was actually going to expose the fact that this took place. And look, I think the leaker was extraordinarily courageous but I

think there's going to be obviously a harsh penalty for the move. But at the end of the day, the information needed to get out and she felt compelled to do so.

But I think at a time where you've got a White House who's firing the FBI director because they're trying to, you know --


VAUSE: Or -- that this information was published.

JACOBSON: Precisely, you know. And they're trying to embrace the sort of hush campaign in secrecy, hiding information from the American people I think we need more patriots who are willing to expose the truth and bring more sunlight to what really happened.

VAUSE: Well, maybe we could have some (inaudible) support.

J. THOMAS: Yes. This is not patriotism. This is exposing national security information. I mean it's despicable. Because you're judgment calling this, you might like this but you don't like something else. You can't have leaks. This is unacceptable. It's really endemic of a larger problem we've got going in on government.

The people just feel emboldened. If they don't like something, leak it.

JACOBSON: One thing I'll say though. You know, this is one thing that we definitely disagree on but it is going to add to political fodder I think for the FBI. For Comey's testimony on Thursday, I'm sure it's going to come up.

VAUSE: Yes. And you know, the administration just can't get out from, you know, the shadow of this Russian investigation. You know, during the campaign Donald Trump, he could send out an incendiary tweet and that would change the news cycle. Everyone would sort of jump on board.

You know, that went pretty well during the campaign. It's not working so well for him now as president. And every time he sends out a tweet, John, it just seems to backfire on him.

J. THOMAS: I think that has been the main frustration of the communications team as well. I mean there has been no message discipline coming out of the White House. And I think it's also been the frustration of President Trump because you're right, his ability to control the narrative via tweet was essentially why he got elected.

And now as much as he wants to shift to a narrative of the day it ends up backfiring and his own staff now are saying, you know, don't take him literally. He's saying take me literally --


J. THOMAS: -- you know. It's a problem. He doesn't get this discipline together, it will significantly undermine his presidency and could cost him the midterms.

VAUSE: You know, the weekend Twitter attack in particular on London's mayor Sadiq Khan, you know, after his city has been hit by a terrorist attack. It was roundly criticized but then, you know, Donald Trump did not let up. On Monday, he tweeted this, "Pathetic excuse by London Mayor Sadiq Khan who had to think fast on his feet. No reason to be alarmed statement. Mainstream media is working hard to sell it."

Dave -- that's just not right. It's completely wrong.

JACOBSON: It's petty, it's childish and it's reckless. I mean we're supposed to lend a friendly hand. This is our -- this is the country that we've got a special relationship with -- pardon me. And at a time when they're crisis, we need to be helping them, not fanning the flames and creating a wedge between our country and theirs.

J. THOMAS: Well, the President did immediately offer full support of the U.S. soon after it happened. It's not like he did it --

VAUSE: There's a few steps before he got to that. There was the travel ban, there was the London mayor. There was a lot --

[00:14:58] J. THOMAS: No, no, no. No, no, no. I think on the day of the attack over the weekend he --

VAUSE: -- in Washington.

J. Thomas: -- yes immediately offered support.


VAUSE: -- charity event.

J. THOMAS: But you've got to understand, President Trump is -- part of what's so refreshing to his supporters about it is that he's honest and that he's going -- this is a reason to be alarmed. Don't -- this is not a little thing.

VAUSE: Well, when it comes to the feud with London's mayor, White House deputy press secretary Sarah Huckabee-Sanders really struggled to make sense of that during the briefing today. Listen to this.


SARAH HUCKABEE SANDERS, WHITE HOUSE DEPUTY PRESS SECRETARY: I think that they matter in the sense that it gives him a communications tool. Again that isn't filtered through media bias but at the same time I do think that media obsesses over every period, dot --


VAUSE: So it's a good communication tool but just don't obsess over it. She went on to say that, it wasn't an insult when Trump called the mayor "pathetic". You know, if she's going to try and square that circle, Dave, she'll need to do a better job than that if she wants Spicer's job, right?

JACOBSON: Yes, right. I mean look, no doubt it's a tough job. I mean you've got -- just days ago Sean Spicer was saying that there was no travel ban. The Homeland Security Secretary said there was no travel ban. And then you've got Donald Trump today tweeting there is a travel ban.

So clearly the left hand is not talking to the right hand and he continues to undermine his staff at every chance he gets. But no doubt it is an extraordinarily tough job.

But I think it underscores the dysfunction and the chaos that just continues to exist in this White House -- pardon me.

VAUSE: Yes. And you know, that line that we've been saying, you know, don't pay too much attention to the President's tweets after you know, the tweets speak for themselves. This now seems to be the new tack which some within the White House are trying to spin out. Listen to this.


KELLYANNE CONWAY, WHITE HOUSE COUNSELOR: This obsession with covering everything he says on Twitter and very little of what he does as President.

SEBASTIAN GORKA, WHITE HOUSE COUNSELOR: It's not policy. It's not an executive order. It's social media. Plus understand the difference.


VAUSE: John -- that would be like Stephen Hurley (ph) saying don't take anything FDR says on the radio seriously. It's just the radio. You know, tweets are an official form of communication.


VAUSE: -- form of communication. It was an official statement.

J. THOMAS: It is. I mean the radio isn't limited to what -- 174 characters.


J. THOMAS: So it's a little different. But yes, the President has to tighten up his tweets. I think this is really just the latest attempt of the White House communication team grappling with how to struggle with this -- not, you know, their idea of don't take him literally, take him more figuratively. It's a struggle.

Look, there's no really easy way to get around it. They're words out of the President's mouth. I don't know how you slice it any other way.

JACOBSON: I think it's a little disingenuous for Kellyanne Conway to go on television to say that because just today, it was her husband -- VAUSE: Yes.

JACOBSON: -- who was angling for a job in the Justice Department, by the way, and last week was on the short list who went out and criticized the President today basically saying you're undercutting the DOJ's argument before the Supreme Court on this travel ban. So you've got -- literally got her husband responding to the President on Twitter today --

VAUSE: It's actually --


JACOBSON: I guess so.

VAUSE: You know, the President was tweeting about the attack in London clearly an act of terror long before there was any official confirmation from officials in Britain. So with that in mind, around the same time, the Secretary of Defense James Mattis was asked to comment about what happened in London.

This is how a grown-up handles it. Listen to this.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Is the London police are saying this is a terrorist attack? You have two dead, dozens wounded. What can you say about --

JAMES MATTIS, U.S. SECRETARY OF DEFENSE: I did confirm everything. I like learning about something before I talk. So let me look into it.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Is this why the United States needs a travel ban?

MATTIS: I need to look into it.


VAUSE: So John -- it's not like there's no one at the White House who can advise the President on how to deal with these things.

J. THOMAS: Yes. I mean he's a seasoned pro at this so it's no surprise. But I believe the series of events was the President called it a terrorist attack after he had been briefed of the event.

VAUSE: He re-tweeted a Drudge Report.

J. THOMAS: No. Look, he was right. He didn't get it wrong but he also -- I remember watching on CNN. The coverage said the President had been briefed. I think I saw the tweet right after that. It might have been off of the Drudge story but look, if he were wrong it would be a whole different story.

VAUSE: He was wrong on the Philippines.

JACOBSON: He was wrong on the Philippines. That's what I was going to say and I think that's the danger is like what happens if something happens domestically and you've got the President of the United States tweeting out fake news or misinformation and then the public consumes that information thinking that it's true because it's the President of the United States.

J. Thomas: You're right but I think what we're having is a semantic argument. Terrorists are killing people and so we're shifting the conversation away. What he should have said when he should have said rather than how do we eradicate radical Islamic terrorism? I think that's what frustrates the President.

VAUSE: We'll leave it there. Thanks to you both.

JACOBSON: Thank you.

J. THOMAS: Thanks.

VAUSE: Ok. We will take a short break. When we come back more on Donald Trump's Twitter problems -- how the U.S. President's recent Twitter storm may have hurt his travel ban's chances of survival at the Supreme Court.

Also the British government wants tech companies to clamp down on extremist growth (ph) in cyber space. A cyber security expert will be with us talking about tracking terrorists online.


VAUSE: The early morning Twitter rampage of the U.S. president may have undermined his own legal team and their appeal to the Supreme Court to reinstate his controversial travel ban.

President Trump lashed out at his own Justice Department, the courts and said his executive action restricting visitors from a handful of Muslim majority countries is actually really a travel ban.

For more on the legal consequences, we're joined now by CNN contributor and former special counsel to President Obama, Norman Eisen. So Norman -- good to see you.

The President -- it does seem he's now doubling down on the past three hours. He tweeted this out. "That's right we need a travel for certain dangerous countries not some politically correct term that won't help us protect our people."

So having said that what we have heard repeatedly from the administration is that this is not a travel ban. Listen to this.


JOHN KELLY, SECRETARY OF HOMELAND SECURITY: Many refer to it as a travel ban. We've always looked at it as a pause.

CONWAY: These seven countries -- what about the 46 majority Muslim countries that are not included. Right there, it totally undercuts this nonsense that this is a Muslim ban. SEAN SPICER, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: This is not a Muslim ban. It's not a travel ban. It's a vetting system to keep America safe. That's it, plain and simple.


VAUSE: Ok. So there's politics here. There's, you know, obviously some problems with the White House. But legally will the admission from the President make much difference as far as the Supreme Court is concerned?


And I do think that this tweet and the series of tweets will make a difference in the Supreme Court. Donald Trump has pulled the rug out from under his legal team yet again. The reason that you see those administration officials, one after another, saying it's not a travel ban is because first, if it is a ban on travel then that is going to set up a tougher level of scrutiny. They don't want that. They're trying to shrink it. Trump undid that today.

Second, the word "ban" brings in his campaign language to the effect of a Muslim ban. That's against the establishment clause of the First Amendment. He undid the good that his own colleagues and lawyers were trying to do for him with these tweets.

VAUSE: Ok. Another tweet from the President. "The Justice Department should have stayed with the original travel ban, not the watered-down politically correct version they submitted to Supreme Court."

Could this tweet actually be a bigger legal problem for those Justice Department lawyers because the issue the Supreme Court is looking is about religious discrimination where the ban targets Muslims? And the President seems to admit the original version was changed because, you know, of political correctness.

EISEN: Yes John -- if the first tweet was the appetizer. This is the entree in the table that the opponents of this ban are trying to set because the case that they're trying to make -- and this is what the appellate court ruled on here in the United States -- the fourth circuit.

[00:25:06] The case that the opponents of the ban are trying to make is that you can trace a line starting in the campaign, continuing in the first travel ban and now into the second travel ban of bias against Muslims, prohibited religious discrimination by talking about the watered-down version, by using the code words of political correctness Trump is connecting up all of those data points.

So it's making his lawyers and his spokespeople's lives very difficult.

VAUSE: Do these tweets take on a greater significance now that he is president as opposed to a candidate? Are the tweets kind of almost like official policy?

EISEN: Well, the tweets are critically important because after all what the case has become about is what did the President intended? Can his intent be taken into account?

And so this is a present statement of intent that does provide more evidence of impermissible violation of the First Amendment by targeting Muslims based on religion. You can't do that under the constitution.

However, they also add to the total arc of the evidence so it starts with the campaign statements, it moves through the first executive order and now he's coloring the second executive order. He's connecting the dots for the Supreme Court and I think it hurts him.

VAUSE: Ok. Well, the legal team is opposing the travel ban. They say they'll try and use these tweets. Here's the lead counsel for Hawaii. He put this on Twitter. "It's kind of odd to have the defendant in Hawaii be Trump acting as our co-counsel. We don't need the help but we'll take it."

Is the bigger problem here perhaps that Mr. Trump is unclear about how the whole judicial process actually works?

EISEN: He does seem to exhibit a lot of confusion in these tweets -- John. For example he blames the Justice Department for the change in the executive orders. Well that was his decision. If he didn't want to water it down, he didn't have to.

So it seems that he doesn't understand what these tweets -- the tweets have been devastating to him, not just here but across the board in so many areas. The investigation of obstruction of justice possibly with respect to Jim Comey -- that's another area where his tweets have been devastatingly harmful.

And time after time he utters these tweets. So I do think that the -- he's failing beyond the job training.

VAUSE: Well, maybe Melania needs to take that phone away once she moves to Washington from New York. That could be one solution here.

Norm -- as always, thanks for being with us.

EISEN: John -- thanks for having me.

VAUSE: Up next here, British counter intelligence now facing some tough questions over the London terror attack, in particular did this man right there slip through their fingers?

Also Britain's Prime Minister wants to crack down on terrorists using cyber space. Why is that called the (inaudible).


(COMMERCIAL BREAK) [00:30:12] JOHN VAUSE, CNN ANCHOR: Welcome back, everybody. You're watching CNN NEWSROOM live from Los Angeles, I'm John Vause with the headlines this hour.

Police have identified two of the three men behind Saturday night's terror attack in London. One of them Khuram Butt on the left was known to authorities because of his links to an outlawed radical Islamist group. The other man Rachid Redouane claim to be Moroccan and Libyan.

ISIS says the deadly standoff in Melbourne, Australia was carried out by one of its soldiers. Police say the gunman killed a man at an apartment, took a woman hostage. She was rescued. The attacker was killed. Three officers were also wounded. Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull is calling it a terrorist attack.

A U.S. contractor is facing charges for leaking top secret information about Russian hacking of last year's election. The intercept Web site reports the document details a Russian military cyber attack on a U.S. voting software supplies. There's not evidence the hack affected any votes.

Back now to the London terror attack. Police have identified this man, Khuram Butt as one of the three attackers. MI-5, UK's security agency was familiar with him and so were police. But they say there was no intelligence to suggest he was planning an attack.

More now from CNN's Alex Marquardt.


ALEXANDER MARQUARDT, CNN SENIOR NATIONAL SECURITY (voice-over): Tonight British police revealing the identities of two of the three men who carried out the deadly terror attack on London Bridge. 27- year-old Khuram Shazad Butt and 30-year-old Rachid Redouane were in that white van plowing into passers by on the bridge and into Borough Market where they went on a stabbing rampage. The third attacker's name has still not been released, but was featured in a documentary last year about British Jihadist. He's believed to have live in this building in East London quickly raided by police.

Along with at least three other properties in this parking neighborhood and nearby where police investigators carried out searches and arrest. The police are now looking for possible accomplices, but tonight everyone, all twelve people who had been arrested in connection with this attack has been released.

Today we met Michael Mimbo, who lives steps away from a building that was raided. He says Butt was his friend and had recently started talking to neighborhood kids about Islam.

MICHAEL MIMBO, NEIGHBOR OF THE LONDON ATTACKER: His views changed a lot, changing, but he became a bit more erratic about how he communicated with the kids and start telling them what to believe and stuff like that.

MARQUARDT (on camera): And then the kids would go home and tell their parents?

MIMBO: Yes, yes.

MARQUARDT (voice-over): And just hours before the attack, Mimbo saw Butt with a white van, like the one used that night, flying down their small street.

MIMBO: It's a 10-miles-per-hour zone. And then you're driving on that 30. And there's kids playing there with bicycles. And you're just -- the bends, you're quickly speeding on the bends, it was -- it was unusual.

MARQUARDT: Another neighbor told Britain's ITN that when he rented a moving van, one of the suspects took an odd interest.

IKENNA CHIGBO, NEIGHBOR: He's getting inquisitive about the van. He's saying to me, where can I get a van from, just asking real details. How much was it and just asking where he could get a van basically, and then he said to, oh, I might be moving shortly with my family as well.

MARQUARDT: The police have now revealed more about how they stopped the attack at 10:00 p.m. on Saturday night, responding just eight minutes after it started. Eight officers firing 50 rounds to take them down in a hail of bullets described as unprecedented in the U.K.

MARK ROWLEY, ASSISTANT COMMISSIONER, METROPOLITAN: The situation leaves officers were confronted with were critical, a matter of life and death. Three armed men wearing what appeared to be suicide belts. They had already attacked and killed members of the public and had to be stopped immediately.

Alex Marquardt, CNN, in Barking, East London.


VAUSE: Well, the biggest tech companies are now the focus in trying to prevent future terror attacks. The British Prime Minister Theresa May wants regulation so would be terrorist can't communicate and plan attacks online.


THERESA MAY, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: But as our efforts to defeat them overseas are ever more successful, they are increasingly seeking to spread their poisonous ideology and to prey on the weak and vulnerable in our own countries, inspiring them to commit acts of terror here at home.

They exploit the safe spaces of the Internet and social media and they exploit them in the real world, too.


VAUSE: Well, Facebook has responded saying it does not want the Web site to be -- she says it wants the Web site, rather, to be hostile to extremist.

Rod Beckstrom is a former director of the National Cybersecurity Center for the United States Homeland Department of Security.

He joins us now from Santa Cruz in California.

Rod, good to speak with you. The big picture here, yes, there are some measures which can actually be carried out, but the problem is where all this can lead in terms of government regulations and just help out how it will go.

He is part of a report from China's "Global Times," the state-run newspaper. "Chinese analysts said British Prime Minister Theresa May's call to the international community to regulate cyberspace to reign in terrorism after Saturday's attack in London is long overdue. The experts called for stronger cyberspace regulation, adding that China's counterterrorism efforts have been unfairly labeled in the past as hurting human rights or freedom of speech."

You know it seems to me that when China was saying something is a good idea, chances are it's not.

ROD BECKSTROM, FORMER DIRECTOR, NATIONAL CYBERSECURITY CENTER FOR THE UNITED STATES HOMELAND DEPARTMENT OF SECURITY: You know, this is exactly the cracks of the issue right here, John. The Internet open platform is design for flexibility and openness. Everyone can share their opinion in some fashion. You can try to control it, but any sociological disease or conflict from the past is going to bubble up through it.

And then when you try to control it, you may slow it but you're going to give up precious freedoms and human rights that we treasure in the west and so much of the world.

And the U.K. of all countries, the shining example for the world for human rights and representative governments.

So, you know, I don't think the West wants to go for the China model. And, yes, China celebrating this should give us I think a bit of pause.

VAUSE: Absolutely.

Look, Hany Farid at Dartmouth College says he developed a program which targeted child pornography. He says he is now offering a similar type of technology to target terrorist online.

Listen to this.


HANY FARID, COMPUTER SCIENCE PROFESSOR, DARTMOUTH COLLEGE: What we do is we reach into those images and we extract out a distinct digital signature, very much like human DNA. And that signature is stable over the lifetime of the medium. And so what that means is that we consider the pipe of a Facebook, a Twitter, a YouTube or a Google and every image, every video, every audio recording that comes in, we grab its signature, we compare it to a database of known bad content and we filter it out.


VAUSE: Suggestion of purely technological point of view, do you think that's something which could actually work?

BECKSTROM: It works to a certain extent, but if it's not an ideal match, it can still miss it and if it's an approximate match, it may stop the wrong thing.

You know, maybe a picture of a birthday party and it thinks it's a, you know, an ISIS beheading on the beach or something. So it's not a perfect solution.

And these companies are already using some technologies like this internally. And, again, I think that the big four social media companies that I'm going to call for a moment the gang of four do want to be cooperative overall. But this is not easy and there is very tough social and political calls here.

And, again, it gets back to the issue you started with which is, you know, freedoms and privacy and control. There is counter failing forces that we have to find the middle path.

VAUSE: There seems to be two issues here. There's content online and then there's communication online and using encrypted services platforms like telegram.

But, you know, the argument against, you know, putting a back door into, you know, WhatsApp for instance server, it can be access, is that -- that opens up a whole can of worms.

And, you know, they also, you know -- I've also heard that this is just a new form of communication. No one called the telephones to be ban when the IRA was using phones to plan attacks in the 1970s.

BECKSTROM: That's exactly right. The Internet is a platform. The social media companies are offering platforms and people can do a lot of good on them and they can do bad things, too.

I mean, whatever humans want to do, the reality is the Internet is like a mirror on the global human psyche with granular data down to each one of us and our actions. And whatever you want to do is going to get out there. And otherwise, it's like a game of Whack-a-Mole. You try to control, you know, bad people or something. You try to knock them back in a hole. You try to shut this down. And the reality is like Whack-a-Mole, it will just popping up in different windows and you're never done.

And you don't want to hurt the rest of society that are good people. You don't want to encumber the Internet in such that it's not the free, open, wonderful place it is for the 99 percent of the world that are good people.

VAUSE: Yes. There are choices to be made, but some of them may just be too hard to make at this point.

Rod, it's good speaking with you. Thanks for being with us.

BECKSTROM: Thank you, John.

VAUSE: Well, still ahead here, the worst diplomatic crisis in years for the Gulf Arab states. Why so many nations is severing ties with Qatar and what the implications will be.


[00:41:41] VAUSE: Well, a number of Gulf nations cutting ties with Qatar has grown -- Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates now joined by Yemen and the Maldives, all breaking off diplomatic relations with the oil rich country accusing Qatar of supporting terrorism. Qatar, though, says those allegations are baseless.

Ian Lee joins us now from Istanbul and Turkey with more on this.

So, Ian, you know, this rift, it's growing and it's also threatening to hit one of the Gulf States economic arteries here, the air transport.

IAN LEE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, that's right. They've stop -- these countries have stop flights going to and from Qatar and they've also ban Qatar's national airliner from using their airspace which is going to make it difficult for them to navigate around Saudi Arabia, around the United Emirates when it's going to places in Africa or in Asia and in Europe.

So this is going to put some strain on their economy. Also, Qatar gets a good portion of its food from Saudi Arabia and with that border close we saw last night people scrambling to the supermarkets to buy goods out of fear that there is going to be a shortage and inflation is going up.

But how we got here, this crisis has been brewing for quite some time. There is a long list of grievances from these countries against Qatar. Some concluded supporting terrorist organizations like al-Qaeda and ISIS, although Saudi Arabia has also been accused of supporting these terrorist groups.

There is also the Muslim brotherhood which Qatar supports, but for Saudi Arabia, the UAE, it's a terrorist organization and outlawed in Egypt.

Then you have Iran which Qatar has somewhat cordial relations with, but for Saudi Arabia, it's their regional rival.

And then you have al-Jazeera which was shut down in Saudi Arabia yesterday. But it's been a thorn in the side of many Arab leaders. It's been outlawed in Egypt. So there is a lot of issues that brought us to this diplomatic dispute and severing of relations, John.

VAUSE: Ian Lee, live, there from Istanbul with the very latest. Appreciate it.

Thank you for watching CNN NEWSROOM, live, from Los Angeles, I'm John Vause. "World Sport" with Kate Riley is up next. Then I'll be back with another hour of news from all around the world. Stay with us. You're watching CNN.