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North Korea Tensions; EPA to Roll Back Obama's Clean Power Plan; NFL Protest; Las Vegas Massacre; Catalonia Awaits Leader's Independence Decision; France: We Won't Recognize Independent Catalonia; Barcelona Mayor: "Escalation Will Not Benefit Anyone"; Flames Spreading Rapidly, Killing at Least 10; Dry Conditions Accelerating Spread Of The Flames; Dove Under Fire For 'Racist' Social Media Post; Trump's First Wife Calls Herself "First Lady". Aired 2-3a ET

Aired October 10, 2017 - 02:00   ET



JOHN VAUSE, CNN ANCHOR: Welcome to CNN NEWSROOM, live from Los Angeles. Ahead this hour?

ISHA SESAY, CNN ANCHOR: Nuclear watch: President Trump teases about war with North Korea while the world watches Kim Jong-un celebrate a holiday.

VAUSE: The owner of the Dallas Cowboys warns players stand for the national anthem or take a seat on the bench. This after insisting from the White House that vice president's weekend NFL walkout was only a political stunt. The Trump campaign uses it as a political fundraiser.

SESAY: And Spain on edge ahead of a potentially historic day as crisis in the vision grip the country. Catalonian weighs a Declaration of Independence.

Hello and welcome to all our viewers from all around the world. I'm Isha Sesay.

VAUSE: I'm John Vause. This is NEWSROOM L.A.


VAUSE: Officials in the U.S. and around the world are standing by for a possible nuclear provocation by North Korea. Pyongyang offered remarks state holidays with the nuclear or missile test and today the North is celebrating a major anniversary, the founding of the ruling party.

SESAY: Meanwhile, close military advisers to President Trump are favoring a diplomatic solution to the nuclear standoff. But the U.S. defense chief is telling the Army to prepare just in case the diplomacy doesn't work.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) GEN. JAMES MATTIS, U.S. SECRETARY OF DEFENSE: There's one thing the U.S. Army can do and that is you have got to be ready to ensure that we have military options that our president can employ if needed. We currently -- we currently are in a diplomatically-led effort and how many times did you see in the U.N. Security Council vote unanimously, now twice in a row, to impose stronger sanctions on North Korea.

The international community has spoken but that means the U.S. Army must stand ready.


VAUSE: So many have noted, sanctions alone have not and most likely will not force the North Koreans to give up their illicit nuclear and missile programs. Threats and insults from the U.S. president have only encouraged a schoolyard style back-and-forth with Pyongyang.

(INAUDIBLE), the U.S. secretary of state was exploring back channel communications with the North Koreans but he was publicly undermined and humiliated by President Trump, who tweeted it was a waste of time.

Kim Jong-un might feel the same way, especially given the Trump administration's records so far. Seems many international deals are not worth the paper they're written on.

Markos Kounalakis is a visiting fellow with the Hoover Institute at Stanford University. He joins us now from San Francisco.

Markos, thanks for being with us. President Trump has scrubbed a lot of deals since he came into office, from trade to climate change. He even left NATO dangling there for a while. Eventually the country does that long enough and often enough, I guess it does become a question of trust, has the Trump administration reached that point?

MARKOS KOUNALAKIS, STANFORD UNIVERSITY: It's exactly the cases, is that is my colleague, George Shultz, the former secretary of state says, you need trust, you need credibility, you need to be able to go out on the world stage and represent that, in fact, what you say is what you will do.

And so what were seeing is that invariably President Trump is talking about tearing up agreements and not really standing behind those agreements that were made by previous administrations.

VAUSE: So one of the biggest deals, which the president says he has decided on, we just don't now what he plans to do, is the Iran nuclear deal. We don't know if he'll scrap it, if he'll send it to Congress, if he will recertify it.

And all this despite senior officials within his own administration saying you may not like the Iranians but they are in compliances with this particular deal. So clearly what the president decides about Iran could have implications beyond Iran and even beyond North Korea.

KOUNALAKIS: That's exactly right and in fact one of the pieces that I recently wrote is suggesting that nuclear deals are the hardest of all the deals to make because the nations that want to hold to -- that we want to denuclearize are unwilling and perhaps even understand that it's a bad deal for them to actually enter into a disarmament agreement.

It is -- it is tough to begin with and if you have this extra layer of not holding up or standing up to the previous commitments that you've made, well, then it's really impossible.

VAUSE: And that's one side of the equation because there's also two parties in an agreement or when it comes to Iran there's five plus one.

On Monday the U.S. president tweeted this, "Our country has been unsuccessfully dealing with North Korea 25 years, doing billions of dollars and getting nothing. Policy didn't work."

He's arguing the North Koreans have cheated on previous agreements or deals they feel about their nuclear program in secret. So when you're talking about trust it go both ways.

KOUNALAKIS: Absolutely and. but, you know, we also are in a situation where during those 25 years, the armistice has held. There have been skirmishes, there have been problems, we're unhappy -- we, the United States, are unhappy. And it's a noble effort to work toward a disarmament agreement.

But what we should maybe be thinking about is how do you get them to containment?

How do you actually make sure that they don't use those nuclear weapons that they have, because I'm not counting on them giving them up.

VAUSE: And right now though, if you listen to everything that is coming out of the White House ,especially everything that is coming out -- or coming from the president, it seems that the U.S. strategy, at least according to Donald Trump, is moving towards anything but diplomacy (INAUDIBLE) military option here.

KOUNALAKIS: Yes, it's a very dangerous moment, I mean, clearly the secretary of state is working towards a diplomatic solution; we heard the Secretary of Defense just now on your program talk about how diplomacy -- this is a the diplomacy led moment, when we're trying to come to some level of solution.

I'm sure that there is a second track being conducted so we can try to get to a point where we can live with whatever the North Koreans decide.

But the reality is -- and I wrote -- as I said, I wrote in my piece, that nuclear deals in many ways are for suckers. We've seen in the past that those countries that we have entered into nuclear deals have really ended up either invaded or their leader has been overthrown.

And I'm speaking specifically about Libya or Ukraine. Ukraine gave up the world's third-largest nuclear arsenal when the Soviet Union dissolved. And look at what happened. They lost the Crimea; the Donbas region is a war and I can assure you that if they maintain their nuclear weapons -- this is, again, from the Ukrainian perspective, Russia would not have done what it's done to Ukraine.

VAUSE: And Nicholas Kristof (ph), who is a CNN contributor and a writer for "The New York Times," he's just returned from North Korea. He's been there a lot over the last 25 years also. And he said this is the first time he saw this country mobilizing in such a way. And he adds that the hardliners seem to have gained greater power this year, especially after Trump's threat to totally destroy North Korea and we were told the military officers sometimes mock their own countries' diplomats for being wimpish American cronies.

There are hardliners too, right now, in Washington.

Does this dynamic mean that diplomacy is essentially done, both sides are trying to find reasons why if they ever got to the point of sitting down and talking, a deal would never work?

KOUNALAKIS: Well, I sure hope not because as we all feel -- anybody in this country and around the world right now feels the escalation of tensions. You don't have to be in those diplomatic meetings to know that right now we're escalating I think both rhetorically, we're escalating in terms of the way that we're moving military hardware around.

We see what's happening in the streets of Pyongyang and how this rhetoric is actually escalating there as well. So this is a very dangerous moment and, as a citizen, I am worried about what's going on. So I am hoping and praying really that diplomacy can be successful.

VAUSE: I think so much people would join you in that prayer. I guess we'll have to see what happens and of course there is always this danger of miscalculation in all of this and that's one of the biggest fears of all.

But Markos, it's always good to see you. Thanks so much.

KOUNALAKIS: Thank you.

VAUSE: Joining us now for more, CNN political commentator and Democratic strategist Dave Jacobson; also with CNN political commentator and Republican consultant, John Thomas.

So let's start with the politics of all of this. When Nicholas Kristof (ph) with "The New York Times," he was in North Korea, he interviewed a senior official with the foreign ministry. That senior official talking about tweets from the U.S. president, focusing the North Koreans of systematic torture of the American student Otto Warmbier who died early this year.

(INAUDIBLE) has to say.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (Speaking foreign language).


VAUSE: (INAUDIBLE) up to speed, I guess read (INAUDIBLE) better description but that is how the president -- the U.S. president's tweets are being received and combine that with what we're hearing from the Republican senator, Bob Corker, telling you at times about the president's strategy.

"A lot of people think there is some kind of good cop/bad cop act underway but that's just not true. In several instances, he's hurt us as it relates to negotiations that were underway by tweeting things out."

So, John, it seems, to paint a picture of a president who's not only causing problems on a diplomatic front but is also ramping up the anger and this mobilization toward -- inside North Korea.

JOHN THOMAS, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: I understand North Korea is not happy with it. You've got a president that for the first time certainly in eight years that's calling them out when they torture people. He's calling them out on that.

VAUSE: (INAUDIBLE) nevertheless torture of Otto Warmbier, by the way, so - that's OK.

Well, he's calling the out for -- we know that they murder their or they've starved their people in the past. They are not good actors. We've got a president who is willing to do that for the first time in eight years. You've got a president who's actually managing to isolate North Korea more than we've seen before.

And we're also starting to see like the U.K. is starting to arm up. They're getting battleships ready in case they need to work with us, to take down North Korea. So it's an ugly situation, no doubt about it but I think Trump understands that North Korea only respects one thing at the end of the day and that's strength.

SESAY: You're presupposing two things of the statement you just made. You're presupposing that the president, speaking in this manner, is containing North Korea. But it has not changed their actions; they continue to test missiles and carry out that nuclear test.

You're presupposing that the U.K. getting battleships ready and going to war, that there is a good ministry option.

Dave, that is what people say is the fundamental problem here, a misunderstanding of the level of difficulty here, that there is no winning here.

DAVE JACOBSON, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: There is no winning, I mean, is a military option a win?

The fact that there's 230,000 American citizens in South Korea, 28,000 military officials in South Korea, if we go to war, those people are to be impacted. There's no way that there isn't missiles that are to be headed towards Seoul.

And I think that's the question when you've got a president who can't grapple with the hurricane effects in Puerto Rico and provide citizens of America like basic necessities, like water, South Korea is a lot further away. That's a whole lot of American citizens that are going to be impacted by this.

And I think long-term the question is like what's the angle? Like Bob Corker today, senator from Tennessee, put out a statement in "The New York Times" or told them yesterday that Donald Trump was putting us on a path to World War III.

That's downright scary.

VAUSE: He said could be. But (INAUDIBLE) is there.

Not only fair is also reporting U.S. (INAUDIBLE) trying to open negotiations with North Korea and they fear the president is actually tweeting the United States into war. Here's part of the report from (INAUDIBLE), the source of the State Department.

"I have this bad gut feeling that they really want a conflict on this, that they are pushing hard."] That person went on to compare the rhetoric to the leadup to the 2003 invasion of Iraq, saying, "I feel like this is a similar situation. They want to do something in North Korea because it is a sort of wag the dog or kill the messenger and they're kind of trying to force fit it."

And, John, is there any evidence out there to disprove what this report, what this State Department insider is --


THOMAS: No, not necessarily, other than Trump's rhetoric on the campaign trail, which was he doesn't think we should be involved in all these foreign entanglements. He thought the Iraq war was a mistake.

So I don't think -- you know, he said we don't need to be involved in unnecessary wars. I don't think the president wants to take us to war. But at the same time, he's not going to let North Korea walk all over us and have places like Hawaii and Guam be threatened.

I think it's just the president's deciding he's not going to kick the can down the road to the next president.

JACOBSON: It's the president who's accelerating the tensions and here's the question that's frankly horrifying --


THOMAS: -- in the last eight years --

JACOBSON: Donald Trump is fanning the flames and with these tweets that he is putting up. But the question is, is he so politically desperate that he sees this as a politically advantageous move to do something, to engage, when his agenda has just flat-out --


SESAY: -- is there an upside for the president in going to --

THOMAS: I don't believe so. I think President Trump understands more than anybody, especially with him being against the Iraq war, that that I can quickly flip on you, looking at George Bush in popularity. At first there was support then it quickly -- Americans don't have an appetite for an ongoing conflict.

VAUSE: Well, one war may be about to start. But on Monday, the Trump administration announced another one had just ended and that's the war on coal. Celebrations in the streets, the war is over. (INAUDIBLE) formal steps to repeal the Clean Power Plan, which was the centerpiece of Obama's efforts to reduce carbon emissions and to fight climate change.

Scott Pruitt, the man who heads up the EPA, doubts climate change, says all the regulations just -- that they're just not needed because everything's great. Listen to this.


SCOTT PRUITT, ADMINISTRATOR, ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY: We don't recognize this as a country as much as we should, that we produce those pollutants that we regulate under the Clean Air Act by over 65 percent.

We're pre-1994 levels with our CO2 levels. We've made tremendous progress as a country without government mandate, without the government stepping in and saying thou shall do these things ad pick winners and losers.

So I think the environmental left likes to look at the past administration as an environmental savior. If you look at the record very closely, they didn't accomplish very much.


VAUSE: Now, Dave, let's just stick with the headline here. Would carbon emissions actually be falling without any kind of government intervention?

JACOBSON: Absolutely not. The fact is that Scott Pruitt is in the pocket of big oil and big coal. If you look at the number of coal jobs across the country, there's more people who work at the fast food restaurant Arby's than people who actually work in the coal industry.

I'm not saying that we want to do away with those jobs. Obviously they're there. We got to protect them.

But we have to have clean energy, we have to invest more in clean energy. Take California, for example, we have some of the toughest environmental regulations in the country, we're the six largest economy in the world, we have over 500,000 clean energy jobs in the state.

So you could have clean energy and good jobs at the same time.

SESAY: And John, it's worth pointing out quickly, before you respond, that part of the motivation for the Obama administration was also the health benefits of clean air --


SESAY: -- that question was put to Scott Pruitt. He ducked it.


SESAY: The fact of the matter is, there are real benefits --

THOMAS: -- well, Trump's undoing what a lot of people think that was an overreach in executive authority, that President Obama didn't have the authority to do it. So he's rolling that back and the estimates of what impact this would actually have on climate reduction is what 15th of 1/100th in 100 years of a degree.

It was not about you --


THOMAS: -- but it was it was not a meaningful difference in the actual global temperature. It was more to show the spirit of America -- it was more about the spirit of America to get other countries to get involved in this process.

SESAY: And the health benefits of having this kind of legislation in place for children and asthma and all these other --


THOMAS: And you may be right but I just don't think that's supposed to be done by executive order, that is something for Congress to debate, and Obama went right around the Congress and tried to do it himself and now Trump is rolling that back and saying, hey, Congress if you want to do something, it's up to you.

VAUSE: Yes, his executive order saying President Trump have been used sparingly and judiciously --


VAUSE: -- since the very beginning --

THOMAS: And mostly has been rolling things that Obama did.



VAUSE: Travel ban --



SESAY: Thank you.

VAUSE: And we'll take a short break. When we come back, the owner of the NFL's Dallas Cowboys has a warning for his players, you disrespect the American flat, what he's threatening and how the U.S. president is responding to that.

SESAY: And authorities have new information about the night of the Las Vegas massacre that is just ahead.




VAUSE: The U.S. president weighing in again over controversy over NFL players kneeling during the national anthem.

SESAY: Late Monday he tweeted this, "A big salute to Jerry Jones, owner of the Dallas Cowboys, who will bench players who disrespect our flag. Stand for the anthem or sit the game."

VAUSE: Joining me now from Atlanta, former NFL defensive back, Tyrone Poole.

Tyrone, thanks for coming in. I know it's late there in Atlanta so we appreciate it.


VAUSE: There's a little more from Jerry Jones, from ESPN's Chris Mortensen (ph), who spoke to the owner of the Cowboys a few hours ago. He tweeted this out, "Jones adamant the policy is in best interest of players who need consequences to stand up to peer pressure."

So how is this decision by Jones in the best interest of the players?

And can he do it?

Doesn't he need authority to bench players in the first place?

TYRONE POOLE, FORMER NFL DEFENSIVE BACK: Well, again, he is the owner. But at the same time, players, I believe, have a right amongst themselves to display their displeasure or their likes about certain things. And I think you start to divide and really kind of going to assist of jeopardy when you start to take away individuals' rights to express themselves.

VAUSE: The NFL isn't really talking about the stand taken by Jerry Jones. But the Washington report -- "The Washington Post" has reported, "That prompted a response Monday by DeMaurice Smith, the executive director of the NFL Players Association, who said that he and players have been assured last Tuesday by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell and New York Giants co-owner, John Mara, that they would respect the constitutional rights of our members without retribution."

Will the NFL have a confrontation with Jones over this?

Or will they just let him sort of quietly do what he's doing?

POOLE: Well, I think it's not go away, I put it to you like that, it is not going to go away. This is an issue that stems way beyond NFL football. It actually revolves around life itself. Even if you want to go back into the '80s and I'm talking about demonstration for injustice and equality, there was a certain rap group back in the '80s. And they were talk about issues that were -- that they were dealing with in their neighborhoods.

And they use music to actually let the world know what was going wrong. So I think here in the NFL, guys have a platform to where they can show their displeasure, to let the world know what is still happening and needs to be corrected.

So I don't think it's going to go away. But I do think we need to form some type of alliance to where everyone understands what each other is feeling. And until we do that, then it's not going to go away quietly.

VAUSE: Do you get a sense that there's not a lot of listening to both sides here, going on?

POOLE: Well, again, unless you spend time with a person, if I live on the east side, you live on the west side and it's easy for someone who is on the west side to say what their opinion is about the east side.

But until you come and spend time with me, then I feel like you have an opportunity to understand my frustrations as vice versa, as I go and live on the west side, I get an opportunity to see how your frustrations cause you to be who you are.

VAUSE: Yes, if you're not listening, and you're not talking, then you don't know really what's going on.

So a day after Vice President Mike Pence walked out of the 49ers game in Indianapolis, the Trump campaign (INAUDIBLE) fundraising e-mail -- there it is, praising the action taken by Pence, adding Please make a contribution of at least $5 to show your support and our

team will send you a nice stand for the flag sticker.

If someone wasn't convinced that the walkout by Pence was not a political student, does this e-mail ox remove all doubt?

POOLE: Well, I think, again, my opinion, I look at the word premeditated. Premeditated basically, you're doing something that you already know what's going to happen and players have been kneeling from the beginning of the season, all the way back to Colin Kaepernick.

So you knew that this was going to happen. So me, personally, I think it was a publicity stunt to continue to draw attention to an issue that basically I think is secondary to a lot of other issues that are going on in this country and around the world.

So for me I say it was premeditated.

VAUSE: If there was principle issue there, possibly Mike Pence shouldn't have gone if he couldn't get a guarantee that they would not stand and then it would be done but that's not clearly what happened.

But Tyrone, great to see you. Thank you so much.

POOLE: Yes, thank you.

SESAY: Away from the NFL now and we're learning new details about the gunman behind last week's massacre in Las Vegas. Authorities initially said a security guard interrupted the shooters as he opened fire on the crowd but now they're saying this.


SHERIFF JOE LOMBARDO, LVMP: He was injured prior to the mass volley in shooting. What we have learned is Mr. Campos was encountered by the suspect prior to his shooting to the outside world.


SESAY: CNN's Kyung Lah tells us about a deposition that could give us some insight into this mass murderer's life.


KYUNG LAH, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Before the gunman unleashes his murderous assault on an innocent concert crowd, he called himself the biggest video poker player in the world, gambling up to a million dollars on a single night, overnight, sleeping during the day, prescribed valium for anxiousness.

These are Stephen Paddock's own words as he testified in 2013 in his lawsuit against the Cosmopolitan Hotel in Las Vegas. The suit stems from this moment. Security cameras catching Paddock slipping and falling in a casino walkway. In the 97-page deposition obtained by CNN, Paddock testifies about that fall and gives us fresh insight into his mind four years before the shooting.

Paddock moved from Las Vegas casino to casino, at one point staying maybe upwards of three weeks out of a month, he said. A high roller, his hotel stays were comped 95 percent of the time. That's ranged from 100 to 1,350 each time I push the button. Speaking of a peak year, asks an attorney, how many dollars are we talking? I average 14 hours a day, 365 days a year, over 200 million coin through. When Paddock says on a given night he'll bet a million dollars, an attorney replies, that's a lot of money. No, it's not.

Paddock called video poker a game of discipline. At times appearing condescending and sarcastic as he explains through his attorney why he stays sober while gambling. At the stakes I play, you want to have all your wits about you.

Paddock's home in Mesquite, Nevada, suggests an upper, middle class retired life. For easy access to a doctor, Paddock testified, he paid a yearly retainer feed to Nevada Internist Dr. Steven Winkler (ph). Paddock says Winkler prescribed his valium. Why? It's for anxiousness. Rage, aggressiveness and irritability are among the possible side effects of taking valium, according to the manufacturer of the drug.

"The Las Vegas Review Journal" reported that Dr. Winkler prescribed him valium in June of this year. CNN could not independently confirm that information.

Despite all the claims about his high-rolling ways, Paddock testified on the day he fell in the Cosmopolitan, he wore his typical clothing.

"I always wear black Nike sweatpants that are nylon or polyester."

On his feet, black flip-flops that he wore 98 percent of the time.

Life was better before the economic meltdown, he testified, saying Vegas casinos comped less and less, meaning he visited Sin City less.

"What happened to the economy in 2007," he said, "it tanked. Las Vegas went into the gutter with a lot of other things. They quit giving away freebies. It just wasn't worth coming out here as often" -- Kyung Lah, CNN, Las Vegas.


VAUSE: It's time for a quick break now. "STATE OF AMERICA" with Kate Bolduan is up next for our viewers in Asia and for everyone else's as Catalonia considers declaring independence, crisis and division has ripped Spain in the streets. (INAUDIBLE).



[02:30:15] VAUSE: Welcome back, everybody, you're watching CNN NEWSROOM Live from Los Angeles, I'm John Vause.

SESAY: And I'm Isha Sesay. The headlines this hour, North Korea could use a major state holiday and launch another nuclear provocation. Pyongyang is celebrating the founding anniversary of the ruling party.

Meanwhile, the U.S. Defense Chief is calling on the U.S. Army to stand ready in case diplomacy with North Korea does not work.

VAUSE: Authorities have new information about the Las Vegas gunman who killed 58 people, wounded more than 500 last week. Police say Steven Paddock shot a security guard before he open fire on the crowd. Authorities previously said they believe the guard had drawn Paddock's attention away from the shooting. SESAY: Well, Spain is (INAUDIBLE) as Catalan's leaders threaten to declare independence. Carles Puigdemont could make a decision Tuesday at the regional parliament. A protest during the weekend, they're putting pressure him to hold off. In Madrid, Spain's government says it would suspend Catalonia's autonomous status if it tried to break away.

But for more on Catalonia, our Isa Soares joins me now from Barcelona, Spain. So, Isa, all eyes on Catalonia's President who shortly addressed the regional parliament, everyone is saying, will he or won't he declare independence? Have there been any signals? I mean, I guess sometimes I get you to read the tea leaves here. Any indication of next steps from Puigdemont? Anything that's coming from himself or his allies?

ISA SOARES, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Not at the moment. We haven't actually heard from him in some 48 hours or so. Good morning to you, Isha. Though, really, many of us looking at the tea leaves trying to find which way will -- he will go.

But this is -- has been, of course, a game -- in a high-stakes game of political chess. And the game now, the move now is for Carles Puigdemont and that will be seen. And we'll see what plays out today at 6:00 in the -- in the parliament just behind me, Parliament of Catalonia.

We have been hearing from some members, some political parties. One party that gives Puigdemont a majority in parliament, there are -- there are far left group. And they basically saying, look, we won the mandate fair and square when it comes to referendum. We don't make any concessions, declare independence or adding pressure on Puigdemont to act. Of course, they're just a political voice, but obviously, they may carry some weight in terms of influence.

We've also had from the Mayor of Barcelona, Ada Colau, who may I add, voted in that referendum, voted against, that actually called on both sides saying -- telling Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy to act like a leader, to like act like a statesman and drop the sort of back -- the invoke -- of invoking Article 155, which would then give them power to control Catalonia. But also -- and Carles Puigdemont basically telling to him that, you know, referendum is not an endorsement of independence. So, you're really starting to see pressure being added to Carles Puigdemont to reconsider or to rethink some of his words today.

We do not -- do not know what he said but we've heard from his Foreign Minister on CNN yesterday, basically saying we want a dialogue, we've been talking. We want to talk to the central government but nobody is listening. Of course, we know what the government in Madrid thinks, Isha, they've basically said they're not going to allow independence to happen. And Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy has basically said the -- all options are on the table in relating -- in relation to that question of taking control of Catalonia, Isha.

SESAY: Yes. I mean, this is a thing, right? Puigdemont has been clear that they're willing to enter into negotiations. Madrid has said, it's a nonstop. I mean, really it's hard to see where the area of compromise or agreement is here. I mean -- I mean, there's no starting point as far as one can tell with any negotiations.

SOARES: It's really quite tough, absolutely, you're spot on. Because, you know, Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy says he doesn't recognize independence, it's illegitimate and it's illegal. So, the minute that for him -- for them to actually sit down on negotiating table, Isha, the only way it's going to happen is if Puigdemont drops the declaration of independence. This is something that he has fought very hard for, he fought for that referendum, and he has 42 percent of those people who voted in the referendum behind him.

So, that is his mandate. And his -- and his really political identity is, you know, is based on that. So, it really is the question of, who's prepared to give in? We've seen the rallies over the weekend of people really pro-Spanish unity calling for United Spain against Puigdemont. Basically saying he doesn't speak for all of us. So, it's important to show that there is a huge divide here in Spain, a huge divide here in Catalonia. So, it's really hard, but, from a political point, Rajoy is not budging. And unfortunately, neither is Carles Puigdemont.

The question now is, are other parties around him within the Catalan Parliaments are -- will they put enough pressure on him to actually drop it? This is a really high-stakes game and Puigdemont could lose it all very, very quickly. So, it really is a question of what he does next. Because he knows whatever he does, if he does call, Isha, Rajoy will act.

[02:35:16] SESAY: Yes, this is very, very high-stakes political chess. Isa Soares joining us there from Barcelona. We'll continue to check in with you, thank you so much.

VAUSE: Well, the question of Catalonia's independence has pitted the King of Spain and the Prime Minister against the leader of Catalonia. And as Atika Shubert reports, that division is playing out among families as well.


ATIKA SHUBERT, SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Maria Rosa Mayo is a proud grandmother, proud to be Catalan, but also proud to be Spanish and she is absolutely set against independence.

"I am Catalan," she says. "I can't deny my country but my blood is just boiling." That puts her in direct opposition to her 16-year-old granddaughter, Sofia.

"She has to respect me, and I have to respect her, " she says. "But when the family is gathered together, there is no debate, no discussion. She is an independentista. OK, she just is. I respect that. But in this home, as she is always seen, we are one, Spain and Catalonia."

Catalonia's bid for independence and Spain's harsh response has divided families. Dinner tables have become political battlefields or silence spaces.

DANIEL VACINO, CATALAN VOTER: No, I don't have any problem discussing things but I feel like they get nervous or anxious when talking about this.



R. VACINO: No. No.


Daniel Vacino voted for independence. His father Rafael didn't vote. He thinks it should never have come to this crisis point.

"We're talking right now. It's not a problem, right?" Daniel asked. His dad says, no. "No, I don't like discussions if there is no way for us to agree. That doesn't make sense."

But when we left, father and son were talking. Passionately but politely about their differences. Reaching out across the dinner table even if their political leaders cannot. Atika Shubert, CNN, Barcelona.

SESAY: Well, Prime Minister Theresa May says, U.K. has made it share concessions in Brexit talks. And now, she said the ball is in the E.U.'s court.

VAUSE: That's what she says. A fifth-round negotiation is underway. Mrs. May outlining her strategy to Parliament. Here's Diana Magnay.


DIANA MAGNAY, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Luckily, for the Prime Minister, she has her voice back and some of her momentum. Much of what she told Parliament, she said before. But they were a few details filled in on the substance of the Brexit negotiations in relation to those three crucial sticking points, the Irish border, citizen's right, and the divorce settlement. Plus, some clarity on the role of the European Court of Justice. And new E.U. regulation in any implementation phase.

And there was the clearest statement yet, that Britain is planning for the possibility of no deal if the two sides can't reach agreement. And that blamed the Department for International Trade has published two white papers on Customs and Trade. Which set out in some detail how Britain will operate in an independent trading nation if no deal is agreed. Theresa May's point to Brussels that the U.K. has made concessions, progress is being made, now it's the E.U.'s turn.

THERESA MAY, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: A new deep and special partnership between a sovereign United Kingdom and the strong and successful European Union is our ambition and our offer to our European friends. Achieving that partnership will require leadership and flexibility, not just from us but from our friends, the 27 Nations of the E.U. And as we look forward to the next stage, the ball is in their court.

MAGNAY: But that's not the way the E.U. sees it. Even before the speech based on the excerpts that have been published, they punched back saying, quite the contrary, the ball is in the U.K.'s court. This is all, as the fifth round of negotiations takes place in Brussels, with the likelihood that there'll being sufficient progress made to move onto the next phase, I.E. (ph) trade and a transitional deal, slim.

The Prime Minister has a very weak hand and the E.U. knows that. She has to straddle a divided Tory Party and a divide Cabinet who have polar opposite approaches to Brexit. That is a hard task for any Prime Minister which is possibly why Mrs. May is still in power. Diana Magnay, CNN, London.


SESAY: A quick break here. Next on NEWSROOM L.A., wildfires are threatening California Wine Country and the people who live there. Why firefighters are struggling to stay ahead of the flames.


[02:41:55] SESAY: Well, deadly wildfires are engulfing large areas of California. And the Governor has declared a state of emergency. With major fires burning across eight counties, from Orange County in the South to the famous Napa wine country in the North.

VAUSE: In Napa, flames have been moving so quickly, many have fled their homes without enough time to grab a change of clothes. Well, a hundred people have been treated for fire-related injuries, two hospitals have been forced to evacuate. Authorities say 10 people have died so far, and well, that number could continue to rise until the fires are brought under control. Extremely dry weather has fueled the blaze and firefighters struggled to get out in front of the flames.

SESAY: Let's get straight to Mike Mullen (ph), Battalion Chief for the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection. He's in Anaheim Hills in Orange County, South of Los Angeles. Thank you so much for joining us at the time that is extremely busy for you. Let me ask you first, can you bring us up to speed on the number of fires that are burning right now, and where it stand with containment efforts?

MIKE MULLEN, BATTALION CHIEF, DEPARTMENT OF FORESTRY AND FIRE PROTECTION (via telephone): Well, right now, in alluding to, we have over 14 large fires that are burning throughout the state. That's not including smaller fires that crews are responding to as we speak. It's actually encompassing eight counties. Right now, the weather as you had mentioned is playing a major factor. We are seeing unprecedented fire conditions within 12 to 24 hours, explosive fire growth.

SESAY: To stay with the issue of weather conditions, I know that, you know, high winds, you know, pose a problem when these fires broke out. I mean, what are conditions like now? Are they on the firefighter's side?

MIKE: Well, in the northern half of the state, up near the Wine Country that you've mentioned, right now, the winds aren't playing as much as a factor as they did overnight last night, where we saw that devastating -- the fire conditions. But we are seeing is we still have those low humidities (ph) and the higher temperatures up in the northern portion of the state. Now, in Southern California where the canyon two fire is, now we're seeing new winds, they are slowly dying down. But we are still in what we call a red flag fire condition. Meaning that some of the humidity levels are in single digits. Meaning that there's still fire growth and crews have a lot of work to do.

SESAY: Yes, they certainly do. And sadly, these fires have claimed the lives of at least 10 people. We know that there've been significant numbers injured. You had me say the expectation is that that number will rise in terms of those affected by this physically. Had everyone in the areas that are on the threat, that are in the midst of fires, has everyone been evacuated out of harm's way?

MIKE: Well, we had -- we issued evacuation warnings immediately. If you remember, our priority is in life and in property. And the most important part is protecting the public and getting people out. When you have these type of fire conditions, even when we issue an evacuation warning, that fire has come up on some of these neighborhoods so quick.

[02:45:01] And unfortunately, and again, our thoughts and prayers are with families and loved ones that were either injured or -- and unfortunately passed during these incidents that that fire came upon some of these communities so quick, that they didn't have an opportunity. And that's why we always stress in California, we don't have a fire season, it is year-round and that they should be prepared. But unfortunately, like I said, unprecedented weather, the fire conditions really pushing on these communities with explosive growth.

SESAY: Yes, it's a tough time for so many people. And Mike Mullen, thank you for taking the time to speak to us. I'm wishing you the very best, you and all your men, as you guys battle to get this under control. Thank you.

MULLER: Thank you.

VAUSE: Let's get the very latest now from meteorologist Ivan Cabrera. He has a lot more on the fire conditions and I guess, more importantly, Ivan, the forecast in the coming days.

IVAN CABRERA, CNN METEOROLOGIST: Yes, we'll talk about the forecast. I think there is some improvement. But just to give you an idea of what has been happening here, this is one of the neighborhoods impacted in Santa Rosa. This is obviously the before picture, and I just haven't seen something like this in quite some time. I mean, the entire neighborhood here is just been leveled by this fire here. That is what happens when you have almost hurricane force winds, very low humidity, and then you've got a spark going, and this has been the result. These devastating pictures are coming out. The death toll, 10. We hope that stays there and doesn't rise too much more, but you see what can happen as far as that neighborhood.

And this and some on the northern parts of the fires here, winds anywhere from 50 -- that's bad enough, right? That'll spread the fire very quickly near Oakland, but then we have a hot guy, a wind gust that was at 79 miles an hour and that is coming from the east. Those winds are going to be dropping down to the valley. As that air drops, it compresses, it warms, and you get some very little relative humidity. So, absolutely, as he mentioned, it's an all-year fire season, but particularly in the fall, we got these Santa Ana winds or as they call them in the north, the Diablo winds, that are coming offshore, so they do not have much moisture with them. In fact, they have very, very little moisture, relative humidity drops down to about 10, 50 percent in the evening.

What we need is for the ocean to come back, that marine layer, and I think we're going to get them in the next couple of days. And so, the relative humidity, although, it won't be great, it will be much higher than what we've seen in the last few days. And I think that will be enough to allow and to get a better handle on some of these fires that are ongoing, which by the way, the containment in some of these, close to zero. So, hopefully, we'll be able to do a little bit better here over the next few days as temperatures cool off as well. Not dramatically so, but I think the key will be the relative humidity once the forecast has been put this into motion.

And now, this will be in the morning. Of course, you get that high relative humidity, but even in the afternoon, I think we'll hang on to around 40, 50, 60 percent. That's better than the 10 and 50 percent R.H. that we've had the last few days. Take a look at the forecast temperatures as well, Modesto 30 down to 23, the average is 28. Monterey will be dropping to the upper teens. So, improving weather conditions here. What happened over the last 24 hours, though, is something that yes, he absolutely put it correctly, unprecedented, hurricane force winds with fire that has spread from 80 hectares to 10,000 in just a day. Guys?

VAUSE: We hear that a lot, the unprecedented line when it comes to these kinds of fires and weather events lately. Ivan, we appreciate the update. Thank you.

Well, in just three seconds, Dove started a major controversy with a new ad. There is outrage and accusations. It was clearly racist. More on that in just a moment.


[02:50:07] VAUSE: Welcome back, everybody. The soap brand Dove is under fire after posting an ad on Facebook. Critics say it is clearly racist. It's a short clip. It's questionable, to say the least. The first frame show a woman with dark skin lifting a shirt, revealing a light-skinned woman wearing a beige shirt.

SESAY: They removed the ad and tweeted an apology saying, they missed the mark in representing women of color thoughtfully and they deeply regret the offense it caused. Here to help us weigh through this P.R. debacle is entertainment journalist Segun Oduolowu. They missed the mark in representing women of color, I will say they did indeed, do you think it was racist, though?

SEGUN ODUOLOWU, ENTERTAINMENT JOURNALIST: I think it was in very, very poor taste. I hesitate to say racist because I don't know who was at the table making the decisions, but I know one thing, I know who wasn't at the table, because there's no way a person of color at the advertising would have sat there at the table and been like, you know what's cool? Let's take the sister and do morphing --

SESAY: And lighten her up.

ODUOLOWU: -- and lightening her up. And black people and people of color are going to have -- are going to be OK with that. And that might be the more racist thing, that a group of people OK'd this ad and never once thought about how it would affect people of color young girls. For it to be Dove who have had their own issues with questionable advertising, there was a 2011 --

SESAY: That -- we have that 2011.

ODUOLOWU: Do we have it? OK. Great. I want to --

SESAY: Let's put it up on the screen.

ODUOLOWU: Yes, they need to see this.

SESAY: We do have that in the system. There you have it. This is an ad from 2011 that put out, they were criticized for this because what it shows is three women standing side by side, each with lighter skin than the woman next to her. Behind them were signs reading before and after. And the African-American woman shows, you know, crack -- she's, you know, got cracked skin, it's dry. And then, the white woman on the end is all smooth and pretty.

ODUOLOWU: Which is absolutely crazy because as we know black doesn't crack and the natural oils in this skin, I -- no.

SESAY: But it doesn't get great.

VAUSE: You're actually 75 years old. You have amazing --

ODUOLOWU: I'm a 75-year-old man that has found somewhat do not look that way.

VAUSE: Earlier this year, there were -- oh, maybe last year, I've lost track. Anyway, there was an ad in China for laundry detergent and -- last year -- they, you know, have a look at this ad. So, they put a black person into -- there we go, the black man goes into the machine, and then viola he comes out again.

SESAY: So awful.

VAUSE: And after this, he's white which is the (INAUDIBLE) bit. So, everyone loves it. This is clearly obviously an act of racism. There is the guy.

SESAY: And now, he's attractive as well, now she wants him. VAUSE: Now, he's attracted that he's attractive. Everyone was free -- I've heard about that being a racist.

ODUOLOWU: It is overtly racist. There's nothing better than -- I think it's more than overt.

VAUSE: It's extensively awful.

ODUOLOWU: Yes, pretty much.

VAUSE: But a lot of people trying to cut down some (INAUDIBLE) if you look at the whole clip. Such as the black woman, it goes to a white woman, it goes to a white woman again. And it wasn't meant to be like that ad. It was all meant to be, you know, encompassing and this got us up. I'm not agreeing with it, but I'm saying, there also seems to be double standard here. Like everyone's relating to, say, on China (INAUDIBLE) but there seemed to be doing sort of verbal acrobatics here.

SESAY: Who's doing --



VAUSE: There's a whole ad on (INAUDIBLE) Chicago Tribune saying we shouldn't throw them under the bus, then another in USA Today is saying, all these digital times, you know, (INAUDIBLE) through the air.

ODUOLOWU: Wait, it's not -- it's not necessarily about throwing them under the bus, but like we're all well-read individuals (INAUDIBLE) and paradise lost. The road to hell is paved with good intentions. What they meant might have been great, what they did, what they executed was very, very bad and it was in poor taste, and they should know better.

SESAY: And could we just be and pick up on the fact that, you know, for anyone who's at home and isn't entirely clear on why this strikes a nerve with people of color, it's because it plays on that trope that we know from time memorial that black is negative, it's bad, it's pejorative, and moving towards lightness on the spectrum is what is desirable. And that we've seen (INAUDIBLE) in advertising for decades.

ODUOLOWU: No, it's historically hurtful.


ODUOLOWU: And I don't -- and I think that people really need to understand there were old soap commercials from the 19th centuries.

VAUSE: We have, yes.

ODUOLOWU: That show, you know, the black kid as being dirty and getting soaped. It was -- that's been said to me in Virginia when I was younger by a next-door neighbor who was completely just off their rockers. So, I've not only lived it, I've seen it, it's historical. It's honestly -- it feeds into all of that, you know, pure Aryan white stereotype, pure as snow, black being vile and unworthy. And it's not only -- it's not only hurtful and it's not only wrong, but in this climate, in this specific political climate, where it feels like there are government officials yanking the hoods of racism, so that they can march the street with impunity for an ad agency and for a company, a soap company for goodness sake, to be this tone deaf to what's going on. Like I said, I don't know if it's racist but it smells racist.

VAUSE: Very quickly, yes or no answer, is everything that appears racist actually driven by racism or is there stupidity and insensitivity and everything else goes into it? Quickly, there's no time. Yes or no?

[02:55:04] ODUOLOWU: It's all -- it's equal. Racism is ignorance. So, if it's ignorance or racism, however, you want to do it, it's one feet in the other.

VAUSE: Got you. Segun, thank you.

SESAY: All right. Well, here's President Donald Trump's current wife, Melania Trump, is squaring off with his first wife Ivana. You want to make signs?

VAUSE: Three versus one.

SESAY: Ivana over the title, first lady.

VAUSE: Over for -- OK. CNN's says more on a very public spat.


JEANNE MOOS, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: First wife versus first lady. Infighting among the harem. Red one comment, it started with Ivana promoting her new book, "Raising Trump". The book SNL predicted back when the couple split.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: OK. Donald, but you just wait until I write my book.

MOOS: Well, now, it's written and the book tour has begun, Ivana described how she talks to her ex, the President, about once every two weeks.

IVANA TRUMP, DONALD TRUMP'S FIRST WIFE: I have the direct number to the White House but I don't really going to call him there because Melania is there and I don't want to cause any kind of jealousy or something like that because I'm basically first Trump wife, her first lady you could say.

MOOS: And with that little joke about Ivana being first lady, the actual first lady erupted through her spokesperson. "Melania plans to use her title and role to help children, not sell books. There is clearly no substance to this statement from an ex, this is unfortunately only attention-seeking and self-serving noise." Melania certainly seemed to be reacting. Red one tweet, "Elect the reality T.V. star and get the real housewives of Trumpland." When Ivana and the future president separated more than 25 years ago, it was a juicy story.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He and Ivana have a prenuptial agreement.

MOOS: And though Ivana now says ...

IVANA TRUMP: Donald during the divorce was brutal.

MOOS: Once it was over, they made a commercial together.


IVANA TRUMP: But it is so right.

DONALD TRUMP: Then it's a deal?

IVANA TRUMP: Yes, we eat our pizza the wrong way.

DONALD TRUMP: Crust first.

MOOS: If only the two wives could share a pizza than exchange notes on the man to whom they bought said, "I do."

IVANA TRUMP: If you're good to him, he's incredible to you. If you're bad at him, you're dead.

MOOS: Jeanne Moos, CNN.

IVANA TRUMP: May I have the last slice?

DONALD TRUMP: Actually, you're only entitled to half.

MOOS: New York.


SESAY: I've forgotten about that ad.

VAUSE: Getting the actual work and that was pizza.

SESAY: And in that note, it is time for us to leave you. You've been watching CNN NEWSROOM live from Los Angeles. I'm Isha Sesay.

VAUSE: I'm (INAUDIBLE) I'm John Vause. Please continue to (INAUDIBLE) Rosemary Church. You're watching CNN. We're the world's leader.

SESAY: Yes, really.