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First Arrest (s) Could Happen as Soon as Tomorrow; GOP Senator: We've got a Short Window to Deliver on Taxes; Trump Blasts "Russia Talk" as Probe enter New Stage; Trump Attacks Clinton as Mueller's Charges Loom; This Week, Tax Reform and Trump's Trip to Asia; Aired 2-3p ET

Aired October 29, 2017 - 14:00   ET



FREDRICKA WHITFIELD, CNN ANCHOR: Hello, everyone, and thank you so much for joining me this Sunday, I'm Fredricka Whitfield.

We begin this hour in Washington where grand jury indictments are overshadowing the week ahead for President Trump. An arrest or arrests could come as early as tomorrow following the first charges in the investigation led by Special Counsel Robber Mueller.

This morning, the President is taking the Twitter to blast these new developments tweeting this, "All of this Russia talk, right when the republicans are making their big push for historic tax cuts and reform. Is this coincidental? Not!"

This morning on CNN "State of the Union," former U.S. attorney, Preet Bharara warned what to watch for as this all unfolds.


PREET BHARARA, FORMER U.S. ATTORNEY, SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF NEW YORK CITY: One, whether or not Donald Trump has some reaction and talks in a way that could be used against him in the future. Is he sending a message of intimidation in some way through himself or his cohorts suggesting that people should not be talking and people should keep their mouth shut?


WHITFIELD: This comes as the GOP races against the clock to meet their self-imposed deadline on Wednesday to unveil a bill on tax reform.


SEN. BOB CORKER (R), TENNESSEE: We've got a short window of time to deliver on the tax reform. Something that I want to see happen on behalf of the American people and to pass those bills, that's where our focus needs to stay.

(END VIDEO CLIP) WHITFIELD: CNN's Boris Sanchez is at the White House with more on what we've heard from the president since the first charges were filed in Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation.

So, Boris, the president has been on a tweet storm after yesterday's no comment from the White House.

BORIS SANCHEZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: That's right, Fred. No public events for the White House today, but the president was as he often is active on Twitter, fired up over what he calls a lack of investigations into Hillary Clinton, specifically citing several examples. He mentioned the now infamous dossier that was produced by Fusion GPS which was hired by the Clinton campaign to find opposition research into then candidate Trump.

He also mentions this Russian uranium deal in which he accuses Hillary Clinton of taking bribes from Russians for a favorable uranium mining company deal that was made during her tenure as secretary of state. He goes on to mention her e-mails, what he calls the Comey fix alluding to the fact that former FBI director James Comey decline to press charges against Clinton over her use of a private e-mail server.

And then he says this. This is an interesting portion I want to highlight. He writes "Instead they look at Trump-Russia collusion which does not exist." And then he goes on to say to republicans, "Do something about Clinton and the democrats."

Part of the reason this is fascinating is because it's unclear what the president exactly wants republicans to do after all earlier this week. House republicans announced two investigations related to Hillary Clinton, one of the circumstances surrounding that uranium deal and secondly, over how the department of justice handled the investigation into her private e-mail server.

So while the country holds its breath braced for news from the Russia probe, the president is not wasting time. He is on the offensive attacking an opponent that he defeated almost a year ago. Fred?

WHITFIELD: And so, Boris, this is supposed to be a big week for the president focusing on tax reform, but it sounds as though the president also is trying to direct the narrative saying let's talk about anything but the Russia investigation.

SANCHEZ: This is a big week for the White House. As you mentioned, Fred, this week will be crucial for tax reform. It is supposed to be unveiled on November 1st. Beyond that, the president is expected to announce his decision on the next Fed chair, whether or not it'll be the incumbent Janet Yellen or whether he might bring in someone else like Jerome Powell as has been reported previously.

On top of that, he's got this huge Asia trip later on in the week. It's going to be an 11-day-trip to five different countries. All the while, tensions with North Korea are near all-time highs. So this will be a crucial week for the president on several fronts, certainly one that we can expect will produce some drama at some point, Fred.

WHITFIELD: Drama. Not lower case drama, but always capital D. All right.

SANCHEZ: All caps.

WHITFIELD: Boris Sanchez at the White House. Thanks so much.

All right. I want to bring in our CNN analysts. Karoun Demirjian is a congressional reporter for "The Washington Post." Michael Zeldin is a federal prosecutor and former special assistant to Robert Mueller. And Josh Rogin is a columnist for "The Washington Post."

All right. Good to see you all of you this Sunday.

So what you all to listen to Governor Chris Christie and what he had to say about any potential arrests.


GOV. CHRIS CHRISTIE (R), NEW JERSEY: I think anybody who's been --


CHRISTIE: -- advised by the special counsel's office that they're a target in the investigation, which I'm sure he has done to those people who are should be concerned.


WHITFIELD: All right, so Michael, you first. You, worked with Mueller. What do you think the possible arrest or arrests, plural, signal in the overall investigation?

MICHAEL ZELDIN, FORMER SPECIAL ASSISTANT TO ROBERT MUELLER: So it depends really on who is arrested and on what charges. What will happen tomorrow is someone will be arrested. They'll be presented before a magistrate judge. The magistrate judge will tell them of their rights, read them the charges against them. They'll set a date in the future for a plea and then the case will go forward and the person pleads not guilty.

If the charges are related to collusion itself, that is that there's an allegation say against hypothetically because I have no facts to base it, so hypothetically against General Flynn for some dealings with Russia and failing to disclose them, that'll send, I think shock waves through the entire community of people involved in this case that Mueller believes that there may be something to the Russia collusion conspiracy investigation at this point.

If it's collateral to the major investigation, something like Paul Manafort and or his business partner, Richard Gates for the matter in which they received money from the Ukraine and if they fail to file taxes on it properly or they laundered the proceeds of that in a way through New York property, then it may make some people feel a little bit more comforted that it's not collusion, but of course it lets Mueller make it clear to everybody that there is no red line in the sand that the president said about unrelated financial crime. He believes that it's related, if that's the way he proceeds with that way in this indictment.

And so I think really Governor Christie is right that there's nobody in the entire orbit here that should feel comforted at all by an indictment of anyone for any charges.

WHITFIELD: Yes, because there are a variety of charges and directions of these investigations.

So Congressman Gowdy echoed former Governor Christie's -- or Christie's -- Governor Christie's sentiments. Take a listen.


REP. TERRY GOWDY (R), SOUTH CAROLINA: I would encourage my republican friends, give the guy a chance to do his job. The result will be known by the facts. By what he uncovers. The personalities involved are much less important to me than the underlying facts. So I would say give the guy a chance to do his job.


WHITFIELD: Wow. So, Karoun, he's one of the few republicans championing Mueller to be allowed to do his job and this sends a pretty strong message, does it not, to the republican leadership and the White House in and of itself?

KAROUN DEMIRJIAN, CONGRESSIONAL REPORTER, THE WASHINGTON POST: Yes. I mean, he's one of the few republicans that's speaking out about that today. But actually most of the republicans who are on these panels that are investigating and looking into these allegations related to Russian meddling and the allegations about collusion between the Trump team and the kremlin have said basically it would be a mistake in the past for Trump to try to fire Mueller or move him in any way. And then it should just be allowed to see itself out.

What they also will tell you or in the past have said is that they believe that the process of the investigation will eventually exonerate Trump. Now, that may have changed depending on what these indictments are revealed to me as we get to tomorrow and actually seeing what it is that Mueller has with that gets to a courtroom.

So people like Trey Gowdy are trying to kind of play both sides right now in a way because he is the chairman of the oversight and government reform committee. He is a lawyer himself. He does want -- as you just played in that clip, he does want to let Mueller do his job unfettered by the politics, but he's also one of the leading republicans that is launching these new probes that are looking into Obama era decisions that had to do with things that Trump's talking points against Clinton during the campaign.

So he's playing it all the way across the board although he is one of those several republicans who are on these investigative committees that are at the same time saying, well, let's not meddle with the investigation that Mueller is doing and let that see itself through.

WHITFIELD: So, Josh, this morning, the president unleashed a series of tweets blasting all the Russia talk. Does that signal some real unease? Because yesterday it was very succinct flat out no comment.

JOSH ROGIN, COLUMNIST, THE WASHINGTON POST: I think the president is giving marching orders to his lawmaker allies and his minions in the media. He's trying to drive a counter narrative to whatever is about to come out tomorrow and he's laying it out pretty clearly doesn't really care what the counter narrative is, but he's got a list of things no matter what you want to talk about --


ROGIN: -- as long as it's not whatever Mueller is going to unveil. So that's the Fusion story, the uranium story from seven years ago and Hillary Clinton's e-mails.

These are the big three. And of course the president has been driving media and lawmaker interest in these stories for weeks now, but now you are about to see that just blatantly organized as a counter narrative media operation to try to distract and disassemble and muddy the coverage of the Mueller investigation.

Now, each of these stories has a different level of sort of credibility and interest and it's not to say that they're not real stories, but the president's strategy is pretty obvious here. And I don't think it's going to work. I think when Mueller releases that indictment and when that arrest is made, that's going to dominate the discussion no matter what the president tweets.

WHITFIELD: So, Michael, if Josh is right and these are kind of marching orders or perhaps a form of veiled intimidation coming from the president, these messages via tweet, is he coming very close to that line or even potentially crossing the line about talking about this investigation, especially I'm sure his attorneys helped encourage him on that no comment yesterday?

ZELDIN: Well, it's possible that he could do things that approach the notion of obstruction, but I think sending out tweets and creating a counter narrative is perfectly normal behavior. We saw President Bill Clinton do that. We saw President Ronald Reagan later on do that.

So that's their right. They can try to create a political narrative. It's not going to make a wit of difference to Mueller and the indictment is going to be the indictment. But I don't see that behavior as being a brick in the wall of an obstruction investigation at this point.

WHITFIELD: And according to a new NBC News "Wall Street Journal" poll, the president's approval rating hit an all-time low of 38 percent.

So, Karoun, how big of an impact might this investigation have on his approval or disapproval rating?

DEMIRJIAN: Well, we know Trump is very sensitive to his approval rating. If this is -- if this indictment is somebody close to Trump and it's a very serious indictment, that seems to push forward the collation allegations then it's not going to improve those numbers. But congress has always got a lower approval rating than the president. That's one thing that can be relied on and that's why Trump feels that one of the reasons why he may feel that he's able to whip up still pressure on the GOP to help him out a little bit.

And right now, the thing is that everybody is being very, very conscious and careful about towing their way up to that line of what is actually coordination and what isn't. You've got a similar -- a very familiar cast of characters here when you're talking about the people like Devin Nunez that are leading the probes on Capitol Hill that's just launched in the last week. And the president because there are allegations, remember, the whole unmasking scandal that they were working together in ways that they shouldn't have.

So in this sort of sense of the president is encouraging it or cheering it on, if you didn't direct it, that's OK. But they're kind of entering into this territory that's very, very touch and go, because it didn't go so well from the last time but it seems like they were working together.

WHITFIELD: All right. Karoun Demirjian, Michael Zeldin, Josh Rogin, thanks for now. Appreciate it.

All right. Coming up in the "Newsroom," Puerto Rico's governor now calling for the cancellation of a $300 million power contract awarded to a small company that's based from the hometown of the interior secretary, Ryan Zinke. We're live in San Juan.

Plus, a shocking find on the streets of London. A computer memory stick filled with highly sensitive security information including the queen's secret route to Heathrow Airport. How did this USB drive end up on a sidewalk? Details straight ahead.



WHITFIELD: All right. Welcome back. The next 24 hours in the Russia investigation could be revealing. The first charges have been filed in Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation and anyone named I that indictment could be taken into custody as soon as tomorrow.

The charges still sealed under orders from a federal judge, but that could also change tomorrow. The Preet Bharara, a former U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York who was hired by President Trump spoke about the investigation this morning on CNN's "State of the Union."


JAKE TAPPER, CNN ANCHOR: Preet, try to explain for us what we know. I know that you don't know any insider information, but the first changes have been filed in the Mueller investigation. As a former U.S. attorney, which Trump associates do you think might likely find themselves in the most legal jeopardy at this point in the investigation? BHARARA: I know very little. I know just what you know and if the reports are true, the only thing we know is that there have been charges approved by a grand jury and those remained sealed. We don't know how many people have been charged. We don't know what the extent of the charges are. We don't even know if it's charges against some of the people that you mentioned in the preview to this segment. Paul Manafort or Michael Flynn. It could be charges against somebody or more than one person that we don't know that might lead to charges against one of those people we mentioned. Manafort, Flynn or someone else.

So at this point, it's hard to speculate about what is in the indictment and what is not.

TAPPER: So sources tells CNN that anyone charged could be taken into custody --


TAPPER: -- as early as Monday. How is this likely to unfold? How is this traditionally done?

BHARARA: So it can be done in various ways. Generally speaking in a white collar matter where there's not concern about the spoilation of evidence and risk of flight, and there have been conversations as there might have been in this case, with the potential target in advance, sometimes an arrangement is worked out to avoid the circus of the FBI showing up and cameras showing up from CNN and other outlets and somebody might be permitted to show up at the courthouse at an appointed hour to surrender in a sort of civil way. I don't know if that's the arrangement that was reached here, it may not have been, but that's my guess.

TAPPER: Sources tells CNN that Robert Mueller has warned former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort that they're working to charge him with possible tax crimes and possible financial crimes. And this has raised the prospect that Mr. Mueller might offer Mr. Manafort leniency in exchange for any incriminating information about anyone else including potentially President Trump.

White House lawyer, Ty Cobb say the Trump ex-aides don't have any evidence against him

Can you shed some light about how this process works of offering leniency and how that might work in a case like this?

BHARARA: Sure. In any cases where there might be criminal activity on the part of more than one person, prosecutors like those in my former office and those that work in Bob Muller's office now, try to see who they can bring charges against first and see if they have information about someone else and typically you want to be pursuing people and pressuring people who have information of an incriminating nature above you in the food chain.

And if that's so, that's typically how it works. It's also possible that they're charging a number of people at once and they want to see who's the first one through the door. It's also a possibility that they made an attempt to try to get cooperation from the person that they charged on Friday and that attempt failed as sometimes happens in my experience from before. And sometimes what it takes to have someone focus on their own future and the possibility of having -- of getting lenience for themselves is to actually see that the prosecutors are not bluffing, but are prepared to go to court and seek a charge, which is it seems like happened in this case.

TAPPER: You tweeted this morning that people should watch not only what Special Counsel Mueller does, but also how President Trump responds in the coming week. What did you mean by that?

BHARARA: So we know from history in recent months that the president of the United States has strong reactions to public events. Even events that have been caused by his own actions.

So after he fired Jim Comey, he went on television with Lester Holt and said some things that I think people find incriminating in connection with an obstruction of investigation. He said that he fired Jim Comey with that being on his mind facts relating to the Russia investigation.

So I would look for couple things. One, whether or not Donald Trump has some reaction and talks in a way that could be used against him in the future, because Bob Mueller would do that and the second thing I would look at is to see if the president of the United States is sending some kind of message to the potential defendant or other witnesses. And that's in two categories. One is he's sending a message of intimidation in some way through himself or his cohorts suggesting that people should not be talking and people should keep their mouth shut, which happens in life from time to time.

And the second thing is whether or not he sends a message of reassurance. So we also have from the historical record in recent months that Donald Trump will avoid going through the regular process for pardoning someone who's an ally in this case it was Joe Arpaio, the sheriff in Arizona and there has been much speculation about whether or not Donald Trump would hesitate to use his pardon power to get out of legal jeopardy and trouble any allies of his and that's something I would watch very, very closely here.

TAPPER: "The Wall Street Journal" editorial board is calling on Special Counsel Mueller to resign. Let me read you part of the editorial quote, "The Washington Post" said Tuesday that the Hillary Clinton campaign and Democratic National Committee jointly paid for that infamous dossier full of Russian disinformation against Donald Trump. Strip out the middleman and it appears the democrats paid for Russians to compile wild allegations about a U.S. presidential candidate. Did someone say collusion?"

This argument that Mueller should resign, we're hearing more and more from the president's allies on Capitol Hill from their obedient vassals in the media. What's your take on it?

BHARARA: Well, what a coincidence, right, Jake? As Bob Mueller is getting his job done and as he's getting closer to doing something that's real on filing charges, the political allies of the president are calling for his resignation. That's a far cry from what we had heard before. I know that Governor Christie will be on the show in a little bit and I think that he knows Bob Mueller really well. He worked with him while he was the United States attorney in New Jersey.

To my knowledge, he's never said a bad thing about Bob Mueller over years and year until now potentially. Newt Gingrich --


BHARARA: -- on the very day that Bob Mueller was appointed sent out a very, very positive tweet saying people should be calm now. Bob Mueller is a consummate professional and only after Bob Mueller is trying to make some progress have people like Newt Gingrich started to say, well, maybe he should resign or cast dispersions on him. That to me is noise and politics.

The fact of the matter is unless some extraordinary action is taken which is another thing we should be watching for, extraordinary action in terms of trying to get Mueller to go away, fire him in some way, he's here to stay for a while.

All the speculation about how long it was going to take for Mueller to file charges has now come to an end, because he filed them apparently, five months into his tenure as special counsel and now the question of how long it will take to do other things is one question. But we know for a fact is that it's going to take time for this process with respect to whoever is charged on Friday to finish up.

And so while that process is unfolding in court, with hearings and a potential trial date, those guys in Bob Mueller's office are going to be working on other things as well.


WHITFIELD: All right. Coming up in the "Newsroom," Puerto Rico's governor has said it's to cancel a $300 million power contract awarded to a small company based in the hometown of the interior secretary. And wait until you hear how the CEO of that power company explains how he got the contract. That's next.



WHITFIELD: Welcome back. The governor of hurricane-ravaged Puerto Rico is now calling for the immediate cancellation of the controversial contract to repair the island's power grid.

Whitefish Energy, a small firm with just two full-time employees receiving a no bid $300 billion contract to get the electricity back on.


GOV. RICARDO ROSSELLO, PUERTO RICO: In light of the information that has come about with regards to the contracting of White Fish Energy in the interest of public interest, I have asked the Board of the Power Authority to invoke the cancellation of the contracts immediately.


WHITFIELD: That was this morning. The governor's announcement comes just two days after FEMA expressed, quote, "Significant concerns about how White Fish was awarded the contract." Still it has been nearly weeks since Hurricane Maria plowed into Puerto Rico and 70 percent of the island still has no electricity.

CNN's Martin Savidge is in San Juan. So, Martin, how does this controversy impact the ability to get the lights back on?

MARTIN SAVIDGE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, that's, of course, the key question, isn't it, Fredricka? And looking at it from here and listening to both the politicians and the experts, it is hard for anyone to believe that the action that the governor is taking today that it's going to speed up the process in any way.

By immediately bringing an end to the contract with the company that had been at least so far the largest supplier of both equipment and personnel to do this job, by ending it, you have a big hole here you have to fill. That will be the great task now for Puerto Rico.

They -- White Fish had already brought trucks over here and the personnel over here. They had already begun the job. What's interesting is that no one at the Power Authority from Puerto Rico nor with the Army Corps of Engineers has criticized White Fish for the job they are doing.

In fact, it has been pointed out that they seemed to be working as hard as everyone else to get the lights back on. All of this conflict has been over the contract and how small that company, White Fish, is to land such a very big contract. It didn't help that the CBO of White Fish (inaudible) is now bragging that he found out about the whole Puerto Rico job by using the social media website.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I found him on LinkedIn.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You used LinkedIn to get a $300 million contract.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: LinkedIn is going to love this, but yes.


SAVIDGE: So, that hardly sounds like a professional attitude. It has been pointed out that the governor here says that he has reached out to the governors of New York and Florida and that they are trying to institute what's called mutual aid in other words, the power authorities in those states will begin sending personnel and equipment here to take over for what White Fish was doing. That's going to take time -- Fredricka. WHITFIELD: And then Martin, now there is also the issue of the death toll. The official hurricane death toll stands at 51. Puerto Rico was standing by those numbers amid reports that more than 900 bodies have been cremated after the hurricane struck. What do we know about the discrepancies?

SAVIDGE: Well, first, let me preface this by saying that in all the natural disasters that I've covered, there has always been a major debate as to who gets counted as a victim of the storm and there's also questions about what is the actual number.

Currently, the official number by the government of Puerto Rico was at 51. There were reports of the cremations, but the government says all of those were signed off on, and said to be natural causes and the families apparently approved of the cremation process. So, they do not consider them victims of the storm -- Fredricka.

WHITFIELD: All right. Martin Savidge, thank you so much.

Let's talk more about this. I want to bring in New York Governor Andrew Cuomo on the phone. He has visited the island twice since it was struck by Hurricane Maria. Governor, thanks for being with us this Sunday. So, do you have a clear understanding of why the Puerto Rican governor is so concerned about White Fish Energy?

GOVERNOR ANDREW CUOMO (D), NEW YORK (via telephone): I think -- first thank you for having me. I think the governor made a very smart move today. There was controversy by the White Fish company and the White Fish contract and he's announced he was going to have an investigation and an audit.

But that is all a frankly side show to the main problem, which is, as you said, 70 percent of the people don't have power. It's a matter of life and death. I also think the "mutual aid," quote/unquote, system will serve Puerto Rico better.

What we have in this country is a mutual aid compact among states. We are celebrating the fifth anniversary of Hurricane Sandy today in New York. We had about 25 states send utility trucks to New York to help us through Hurricane Sandy.

[14:35:11] So, rather than going to one private company, the governor is saying he wants to exercise mutual aid where he asks other states to send down trucks, crews, pole diggers and setters and line men.

And they are then reimbursed through the federal government under this mutual aid. I know just from the state of New York I can send down hundreds of utility crews. I think in the long run, that's the faster way to get this done anyway. So, I think he's doing a smart thing.

WHITFIELD: So, Governor Rosello (ph), has said he requested that kind of assistance from New York as well as from Florida. To what detail and capacity are you able to send reinforcements? You just mentioned you can send hundreds of crews, but won't it take even more than that?

CUOMO: You know, we will need an estimate from the Puerto Rican Power Authority as to how many crews they want. It could take 1,000 or 2,000 crews from what I have seen when I was in Puerto Rico. Hurricane Sandy for New York, Long Island, we had 6,000 crews. We had them literally in a matter of days.

You have a complication with Puerto Rico that you are going to have to put the bucket trucks on a barge and transport them. That's going to be the longest period of time. Then you have a logistical operation on the island. Where do you house 6,000 workers?

But those are logistical issues that can be worked out. But, I think for sure this whole White Fish situation, first of all, the job was not getting done quickly. Second of all, now with this investigation, et cetera, it was going to be a distraction. The main point is that we are forgetting. This is like day 36 and they have no power. These are American citizens.

WHITFIELD: Is it your feeling that there should only be mutual aid and no use of private contractors or do you have to have them working together in concert?

CUOMO: What happens in mutual aid is you also use private contractors. For example, in the state of New York, I have public utilities in the state of New York and we have private contractors that we use. Both would be sent from this state and through this state's apparatus.

They then get billed back through the federal government. But, look, day 36 with no power, no clean water for many people. It's a matter of life and death. We have to remember these are Americans.

Just imagine if this was any other state in this country. If these were Texans or New Yorkers or Californians, the outrage that media coverage that you would be seeing. Puerto Ricans are Americans. Let's treat them that way.

WHITFIELD: So the improvements have not been fast enough clearly for people living there. You visited twice. Did you see any marked improvement between your two visits?

CUOMO: Very little.

WHITFIELD: Were at all encouraging to you?

CUOMO: Very little. It all starts with power. If you don't have power, pumps don't operate, and people can't operate equipment to clean their home. It's very hard to get the society up and running until you have the power restored. There has been very little progress on the power.

I heard the reports that White Fish has people working, but you are talking about thousands of crews that you are going to need there. They are nowhere near that capacity. It has been a month. The federal government knows how to do this. We do this literally on a monthly basis in this country.

When Texas had a problem and Florida had a problem, New York State sends utility crews and they get assistance and come back. There was no reason for this to take 36 days.

[14:40:04] It's just frankly because they didn't get the attention and think we treat Puerto Ricans like second class Americans.

WHITFIELD: All right. We will leave it right there. New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, thanks so much.

CUOMO: Thank you very much.

WHITFIELD: We'll be right back.


WHITFIELD: Welcome back. A startling find on the streets of London, a computer memory stick containing sensitive Heathrow Airport security data was reportedly found laying on the ground. The security data on the USB stick apparently included details on the Queen's airport routes.

I want to bring in CNN technology and business correspondent, Samuel Burke. He's joining us now from London. This is very alarming. How big of a breech is this?

SAMUEL BURKE, CNN MONEY TECHNOLOGY CORRESPONDENT: Fredricka, it's absolutely stunning to think that one of the biggest and busiest airports in the world has some of its most confidential and secretive information found on a USB stick, 13 miles from Heathrow Airport in a seemingly random London neighborhood. No password on the USB stick and no encryption.

[14:45:12] Now Heathrow Airport says they have launched an internal investigation to try and figure out how this happened. They've analyzed the information and believe that Heathrow Airport is secure.

Now, you mentioned the queen. She doesn't use the same gate that the rest of us use when we fly to and from Heathrow Airport. She uses the Royal Suite. Some of the most intimate and important details about that suite were revealed on this USB drive including a lot of other information.

What type of details were seen on this USB drive, the routes from foreign dignitaries. So, imagine, Fredricka, presidents and prime ministers visiting here in the U.K., the special routes that they take revealed maps of the security camera position.

Certainly, you wouldn't want anybody with any nefarious ideas knowing how to avoid those cameras and the locations of secret tunnels and escape shafts that's kind of network that is below Heathrow Airport.

Now, speaking to cyber security experts, they told me not only will the intelligence folks over at Heathrow Airport be trying to figure out who might be behind this, but they also want to know if this information, God forbid, ended up anywhere else besides this USB drive maybe on the dark web where terrorists could get it.

And certainly, we need no reminder about the facts that airports remain high value targets for terrorists.

WHITFIELD: Right. Very alarming and very frightening, thanks so much, Samuel Burke, in London. Appreciate it.

All right. Coming up in the NEWSROOM, the northeast bracing for a monster tropical storm exactly five years since Super Storm Sandy struck the region. Where the new storm is expected to hit, straight ahead.



WHITFIELD: Welcome back. In the CNN original series, "This Is Life," Lisa Ling travels across the country showing us communities we may not usually see. In her latest episode, she is focusing on what it means to be Muslim in America. She takes us to a self-defense class for Muslim women.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This doesn't make me, my heart makes me. I want people to know Muslims are not here to hurt people. They love people.

LISA LING, CNN HOST, "THIS IS LIFE WITH LISA LING" (voice-over): But in a hostile world, Muslims, especially women had to learn how to protect themselves. Hanifa (ph) is taking steps to do just that.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Show me. Eyes, eyes, nose, nose. Knees, knees.

LING: Today, at the mosque where she attends Friday prayers, she is taking her first self-defense class.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The first weapon we have, let them know I see you. What are you doing? Stop! I'm telling you to stop. That's what I want to make sure that I'm doing. That makes me shake a little bit. All right.

LING: For Hanifa, this is the first time she has ever physically had to defend herself.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Eyes, eyes, nose, nose, knees, knees.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Give her a hand! That's what you are supposed to do. It's like she is fighting for her life. Sometimes you are fighting for your life.

LING (on camera): OK. Hanifa, what did you think? I mean, you had that death face. That mean face. I was scared.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Hopefully, I won't have to use it, but in just case, I know what to do.


WHITFIELD: Lisa Ling joins us now from Los Angeles. OK. So, Lisa, why do these women feel compelled to learn self-defense?

LING: Well, we all know that attacks on Muslim people have risen sharply in recent years. Those Muslim women choose to wear the hijabs are particular targets and so to try to combat that, these Muslim women in Tennessee decided to empower themselves by taking a self- defense course.

This episode is important to me, Fred, because I think that there is a perception that Islam is associated with violence. That it's a new phenomenon. Islam is the fastest growing religion in the world, but many don't realize that Islam has been in this country since the founding of our nation.

Many slaves who are brought here in the 1700s were Muslim and so many of them were forced to convert to Christianity. It's not so much that it is have having a resurgence, but a period where close to a million Muslims converted or became mainstream Muslim and these were members of the nation of Islam.

This episode explores the roots of Islam in America. It's predominantly been in the African-American community.

WHITFIELD: All right. Lisa Ling, we will all be watching. "THIS IS LIFE" airs tonight at 10:00 Eastern Time here on CNN. We have so much more straight ahead in the NEWSROOM right after this.



WHITFIELD: The last time Anthony Bourdain was in Sri Lanka, there was a civil war going on. In this week's, "PARTS UNKNOWN," he returns to see how the culture and the food have changed.


ANTHONY BOURDAIN, CNN HOST: So it's been eight or nine years since I've been to this beautiful country filled with lovely people, incredible food, Sri Lanka. Last time I was here, let's put it this way, we couldn't see too much of the place. We were here in the middle of one of the most vicious, unrestrained conflicts you could imagine. Well, the war is over. What is Sri Lanka like now?