All In With Chris Hayes, Wednesday, November 18th, 2015
Read the transcript from the Wednesday show
Show: ALL IN with CHRIS HAYES
Date: November 18, 2015
Guest: Malcolm Nance, Tommy Vietor, Andrea Carson, Samia Hathroubi, John
Sultz, Caroline Fourest
CHRIS HAYES, MSNBC HOST: Good evening from Paris. I`m Chris Hayes.
A massive raid in a northern suburb here has quite possibly disrupted an
entire terrorist cell in the wake of Friday`s attack, with at least two
more suspects dead and eight more arrests. We will get to that in a
But first, NBC News has learned there`s a new ISIS video that makes a
reference to New York`s Times Square. There are no details or plans of a
plot. And it`s important to note that video of Times Square has been used
by ISIS before.
Senior law enforcement officials say there is no new specific threat
information to New York. They are aware of ISIS images with videos of
Times Square. One source called it more propaganda from ISIS.
Joining me now, former U.S. intelligence officer, Malcolm Nance.
And, Malcolm, your reaction to this?
MALCOLM NANCE, FORMER U.S. INTELLIGENCE OFFICER: Well, certainly I have
strong reactions to the raid that was carried out today by French forces.
It was an intelligence success and it was a ground combat direct action
However, we did see some components of ISIS, which hadn`t been present
before -- use of female suicide bombers outside of Iraq and Syria. They`re
very prevalent in Iraq and Syria, but not out in the West.
On the other hand, they did a very, very slick propaganda production today,
and it`s really interesting how they play very quickly upon our fears, by
putting out this video, using the live feed from the president of France,
President Hollande. French warships and then bringing out ISIS members who
are from France, to speak and then showing how to do a suicide bombing
plays very quickly into the psyche of the population today, and that`s why
we have people afraid of something which actually wasn`t present in the
video, and that was a direct threat to the United States.
HAYES: Yes, I mean, we`ve got to be clear here. Obviously, ISIS has, for
the last 20 months, at least, two years, put out a string of propaganda.
There was a picture of the White House at one point. There was someone
speaking English, saying we`re coming for you, Barack Obama.
I mean, a huge part of what they are trying to do right now is create this
sense, right, of this kind of unstoppable force across the world and these
videos are intended to make Americans scared.
NANCE: Absolutely. Everything they do, you know, from the way they do
their terroristic combat. They used this form of shock and awe, which we
call terror shock value, TSV, by beheading their victim base and attacking
in an asymmetric fashion in ways that you wouldn`t expect it.
And they have the capacity to maximize that effect by using these advanced
modern propaganda techniques, turning them around very quickly in very
slick packages and getting them into the mainstream media, and then you --
again, you multiply the terror effect. And the media is a willing host for
HAYES: The media is a willing host?
NANCE: Yes, absolutely. As a matter of fact, that video was really not
intended towards the French populace. If you noticed that there was only
one French speaker inside it. And everyone else was an Arab speaker.
They showed a couple of videos, clips of a former French soldier doing
tactical training. But, for the most part, it was intended for the
consumption of the international news media. And the fact that they used a
piece of stock footage, video footage, and, you know, in a scenario that
was oriented towards the people of France, and it happened to be Times
Square, doesn`t necessarily mean that they`re coming after the United
Their ideology is so virulent. They will come and strike wherever they
have the opportunity. So, you don`t have to worry about specific threats.
HAYES: Yes, I mean, it strikes me that no one in the American intelligence
community, no one in the NYPD or the FBI has any illusions about the desire
of ISIS to strike in major American cities, if they had the capacity. That
is not putting anyone on notice.
NANCE: No, it`s not putting anyone on notice.
And more importantly, and I try to make this point every time I talk about
ISIS -- ISIS is the fifth generation of al Qaeda. We have already been
struck by people who were followers of this ideology. What you just now
have is you just now have a younger, faster generation, with much more
sophisticated propaganda techniques, and who have absolutely no qualms
about operating as a tight, tactical team, and using whatever weapons that
they have in hand to create mayhem.
And right now, they`ve moved their battle space into Europe. It has yet to
come to the United States. But that doesn`t mean it`s not going to happen.
But don`t wait for a specific threat. The threat is emerging as it stands.
HAYES: All right. Malcolm Nance, thank you very much. Appreciate it.
NANCE: It`s my pleasure.
HAYES: Last night in the Paris suburb of Saint-Denis, at about 4:30 a.m.
local time, special police forces and soldiers cordoned off the immediate
vicinity and commenced a raid in which the gun battle alone lasted almost
an hour. Police firing more than 5,000 rounds of ammunition, according to
French prosecutor, who briefed the press today.
At least two people were killed. One of them a woman, as Mr. Nance just
mentioned, who set off an explosive vest, and a second individual is not
yet identified. Authorities trying to ascertain if it could be the
suspected ring leader of Friday`s the attack, Abdelhamid Abaaoud. Eight
more suspects were arrested. The prosecutors said the raid was so intense,
the building was at risk of collapse and the investigation of the site is
Also today, according to the Agence France Press, a Jewish schoolteacher in
Marseille was stabbed by three assailants on Wednesday evening. Reports
indicate the attackers uttered anti-Semitic phrases and declared themselves
ISIS supporters while knifing the teacher, whose injuries are reported as
Also today in the Islamic State magazine, ISIS claimed to have brought down
that Russian jetliner with an improvised bomb. It posted a picture of the
materials it claimed to use.
Joining me now with the latest on the raid, NBC News correspondent, Keir
And, Keir, a lot of questions about just who was in that building. What do
we know so far?
KEIR SIMMONS, NBC NEWS CORRESPONDENT: A lot of questions, Chris. And the
thing we don`t know is the most important thing is whether Abdelhamid
Abaaoud was in that building. He being described as the linchpin, the man
behind the attacks. The man who intelligence services thought was in Syria
with ISIS, until it emerged today that this whole siege was aimed at trying
to get him on this third floor apartment, where the French officials
believe that he was.
Now, just to take you through the scale of that siege, there were 110
police officers, as you mentioned, 5,000 rounds were fired. It began at
4:20 local time. That`s just after 10:00 Eastern. The main events, if you
like, took place through 7:00.
So, from about 7:03, there was shooting intermittently. One person was
killed inside the flat. That, of course, we believe would be the woman who
set off a suicide vest, who you mentioned earlier. Then there are multiple
explosions at around 7:20.
By 7:40, residents are being told to stay inside. Many of them have been
inside, terrified, as this played out over a number of hours. And then,
finally, at 9:00, prosecutors announced the arrest of three men inside the
flat and a number of others outside and the police announced the operation
was over by 11:00.
So, it was a sustained siege with police and a cell that the French
prosecutor now says believes were preparing to launch another attack,
presumably in Paris, quite soon, it seems. It seems like the French
officials, based on intercepts, intelligence, they thought they need to
move quickly. Those intercepts may well have been Abaaoud`s cousin, who is
the woman who killed herself at the beginning. It`s phone calls between
him and a relative, that seems to have tipped off the officials that, in
fact, a new attack was being planned and that they needed to move quickly.
But again, they had hoped that they might get Abaaoud in this siege right
now. They are saying he is not amongst those who have been apprehended.
And they don`t know whether he is the man who was killed during that siege.
HAYES: All right. Keir Simmons, thank you very much.
The ongoing hysteria in the U.S. over Syrian refugees has brought a sharp
response from President Obama during a trip to the Philippines.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We are not well-served when,
in response to a terrorist attack, we descend into fear and panic. When
candidates say, we want to admit 3-year-old orphans, that`s political
And I would add, by the way, these are the same folks oftentimes who
suggest that they`re so tough that just talking to Putin or staring down
ISIL or using some additional rhetoric somehow is going to solve the
problems out there. But, apparently, they`re scared of widows and orphans,
coming into the United States of America, as part of our transition of
First, they were worried about the press being too tough on them during
debates, now they`re worried about 3-year-old orphans. That doesn`t sound
very tough to me.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Senator Ted Cruz, who was one of the Republican presidential
candidates to which President Obama appeared to be referring, responded
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. TED CRUZ (R-TX), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Let me suggest something,
Mr. President -- if you want to insult me, you can do it overseas, you can
do it in turkey, you can do it in foreign countries, but I would encourage
you, Mr. President, come back and insult me to my face. Let`s have a
debate on Syrian refugees right now. We can do it anywhere you want. I`d
prefer it in the United States and not overseas, where you`re making the
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: The president was in the Philippines, not in Turkey, we should
Today, Donald Trump returning to his theme -- the president is incompetent
and the screening of refugees inadequate proceeded with this --
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
HOST: Is Obama now a threat to America`s national security?
DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I think he`s a threat to our
country. I mean, he must have some kind of a thing going, because you
know, when you see that he won`t even call them by their name, attack after
attack after attack and it`s always the same thing, it`s hatred. It`s
hatred. And it is exactly that. It`s radical Islamic terrorism.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: And today, the Democratic mayor of Roanoke, Virginia, invoked
Japanese internment camps of World War II as a model in a statement he put
out calling on suspension of further refugee assistance, Mayor David Bowers
wrote, "I`m reminded that President Franklin D. Roosevelt felt compelled to
sequester Japanese foreign nationals after the bombing of Pearl Harbor. It
appears the threat of harm to America from ISIS now is just as real and
serious as that from our enemies then."
Joining me now, Tommy Vietor, former national security spokesman for
President Obama and co-founder of Fenway Strategies.
Tommy, a lot of people were not happy with the president`s remarks in the
last two days, his defense of his ISIS strategy, his remarks about fear and
panic that he`s striking the wrong tone. What do you say to those folks?
TOMMY VIETOR, FORMER NATIONAL SECURITY SPOKESMAN: I`d say, you know, I
worked for him for seven years. I think I recognize a very angry President
Obama. And I don`t think he used any political back and forth with Ted
Cruz or anyone else, although Cruz gamely made himself the story here.
It`s that the rhetoric out of people like Cruz, out of Chris Christie, out
of Jeb Bush, saying bring in only Christians, no Syrians should be allowed
in, plays into the black and white world, the sort of propaganda that ISIS
is trying to create, that helps them recruit. That leads them to believe
that they`re this us versus them mentality.
And really, these people are making his job harder -- his job of keeping
the American people safe harder. And that`s why he was so upset today.
HAYES: There`s been a tremendous amount of attention paid to the Syrian
refugees, despite the fact, and I have to say this, every time it comes up,
there is no definitive link to actual Syrian refugees and the attackers.
All of them identified so far have been E.U. nationals, a single passport
that was clearly faked. We don`t know the full story of the body attached
to that passport. So, that has to be very clear whenever we talk about
That said, the coverage and the rhetoric from the Republicans particularly,
the polling out today, 56 disapprove of increasing incoming refugees, 41
percent approve. White House issuing a veto threat for a vote to slow or
pause the process.
Is the president on the wrong side of the politics of this?
VIETOR: He very well may be. And I think this is the challenge, is when,
you know, in the wake of an event like this, where everyone is terrified
and you just want government to do something, you know, people seize on
these issues, that don`t necessarily solve the problem.
You saw this after Ebola. Everyone said, shut down the airports, stop
flights from Africa, health experts said that could actually exacerbate the
problem. But it didn`t stop people from putting forward these ideas that
are simplistic in nature, but don`t actually fix the underlying challenge.
So, again, I think dealing with ISIL is going to be a long -- a years` long
process, and a big part of that will be a strategic communications effort
to try to integrate Muslim communities that don`t feel a part of France or
the United States or feel disaffected and are more susceptible to ISIS
But when you talk about Christians should only be allowed in, I think it
exacerbates that problem in an enormous way.
HAYES: Someone -- I was reading someone who talked about, you know,
there`s a famous line, I think it was in a Ryan Lizza piece, about the
foreign policy guideline for the Obama administration being, don`t do
stupid stuff, not saying "stuff."
HAYES: It seems there are these moments where there`s massive demagoguery,
there`s backlash, the president playing this kind of calm, rational, let`s
don`t lose our heads. Is there something unsatisfying about that to the
VIETOR: Yes, I think that it`s absolutely right, Chris. And I think he
doesn`t like sort of the politics of, you know, saying something to make us
just feel good. I mean, I think he understands that there`s a moment of
healing that he, as president, can provide after incidents like this.
You`ve seen him do this many times in Newtown or a number of sort of major
addresses he`s given.
But, you know, I think these sort of -- you know, the idea you can defeat
Iran or defeat ISIL or deal with any of these great challenges by using
more adjectives and talking tougher is not actually true. What it`s going
to take is a concerted effort that brings together the international
community, including, you know, the Gulf Arab states, a number of Muslim
communities, and when we use this sort of rhetoric, it actually divides
those coalitions that we really feed to succeed.
HAYES: All right. Tommy Vietor, thank you very much.
VIETOR: Thanks, Chris.
HAYES: Much more from Paris ahead, including more on the messy fight over
Syrian refugees in America. A Republican candidate for president with the
last name of Bush suggesting we put boots on the ground in Syria.
And later, my interview with the former journalist with "Charlie Hebdo" on
her reaction to the awful events of this week.
HAYES: The police raid this morning in Saint-Denis caught the community by
surprise, including the city`s leaders. Earlier, I was in Saint-Denis, I
had the chance to speak with the deputy mayor, who told me how his morning
DAVID PROULT, DEPUTY MAYOR OF SAINT-DENIS (through translator): This
morning, around 4:30, I was woken up by a neighbor`s phone call. A friend
of mine who told me she could hear gunshots and explosions. So I called
the mayor and went outside to see what was going on.
HAYES: Did you know, rather quickly, what this meant, what was happening?
PROULT: The amplitude of the attack, the violence, made me think straight
away that it was linked to the situation with the terrorists, to the time
as well. It was very early, 4:00. It`s not a normal hour for police
HAYES: Are you surprised that they were -- this group of people were just
a few blocks from city hall in Saint-Denis?
PROULT: Of course, we`re surprised. Nothing can make us believe that this
could happen. As we speak, we do not have the identities of these people.
It seems they arrived yesterday, but still, all needs to be confirmed by
the authorities. But of course, we`re surprised.
HAYES: For Americans that are just learning of Saint-Denis, because the
stadium or what happened today, what do you want people to know about this
PROULT: We are a big town in the north of Paris. We are a popular town,
we are a big town. We are over 80 to 100 different nationalities. We`re
modest people. We are multicultural, as you say. There are people of all
origins that live rather well together.
HAYES: Do you think what`s happened will threaten that multiculturalism?
PROULT: No. Today, we`re facing a terrorism situation. Today was a
police action against the terrorists that took place in Saint-Denis. It
doesn`t question the diversity and our will and the pleasure we have of
HAYES: My great thanks to the deputy mayor of Saint-Denis.
Coming up in the U.S., an ugly backlash towards refugees grows, with one
political leader bringing up the specter of internment camps. That`s
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEAN HANNITY, FOX NEWS: You suggested that there might be mosques in
America that need to be shut down.
TRUMP: Well, you`re going to have to do something. They`re coming out of
-- some bad things are happening. And a lot of them are happening in the
mosques. And you`re going to have to do something.
Nobody wants to shut down religious institutions or anything, but, you
know, you understand it. A lot of people understand it. We`re going to
have no choice. There`s absolutely no choice.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: That was Donald Trump on FOX News last night. This was the scene
literally the scene at the Trump rally in Massachusetts tonight.
Protesters stood up shouting, "Donald Trump is a racist." A man was booed
by the raucous crowd, grabbed there by the back, pulled to the ground, as
you can see, and escorted out.
All the backlash rhetoric in the U.S. in the wake of the attacks here in
Paris grows increasingly harsh. Today, French President Hollande joined
with President Obama in standing by plans to allow refugees to settle in
his country, with Hollande saying he will welcome 30,000 over the next two
years, despite growing anti-refugee sentiment that we`re seeing manifested
in the states.
Tonight, we`re seeing some of the real-world consequences of that sentiment
in the U.S.
In Tennessee, a top GOP lawmaker called for the National Guard to round up
any Syrian refugees who have recently settled in the state and forcibly
In Virginia, as we mentioned earlier, the Democratic mayor of Roanoke,
David Bowers, made a positive reference to Japanese internment camps and
calling for his city to turn away Syrian refugees.
And Indiana Governor Mike Pence turned away two Syrian refugees who had
been preparing to live in his state.
The Democratic Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy met today with one of the
families, a shopkeeper, his wife, and 5-year-old son who have been living
as refugees for four years and offered them a home in his state.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GOV. DANNEL MALLOY (D), CONNECTICUT: I told them that people in the United
States are generous and good people, but sometimes things happen elsewhere
that cause people to forget about their generosity and to forget about
their native warmth and spirit. But that will return to the rest of people
in due course.
They know that they`ve been diverted. They know that they were unwelcome
in another state and, you know, we`re not in a position to take everybody
from Syria. But Connecticut should take its share.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Joining me now, Democratic Representative Andre Carson of Indiana,
one of two Muslims serving in the U.S. Congress.
Representative Carson, your response to your governor, Mike Pence`s
actions, in essentially blocking the door for these people that are trying
to get some safety.
REP. ANDRE CARSON (D), INDIANA: Well, I certainly agree with Governor
Pence, who is also my former congressional colleague, with regard to this
matter. Look, there are serious national security concerns that we have to
take into consideration, without question.
I can tell you, as someone who is a former law enforcement officer, who has
worked in an intelligence fusion center, keeping our country safe is a
tremendous task, not only for law enforcement officers, but for mayors,
governors, and certainly the president.
What we`re seeing now is the Syrian refugee crisis being used as a
justification for xenophobia, Islamophobia and all kinds of destructive
phobias you can see.
What we have to do is deal with the threat that is at hand. A group
claiming to represent Islam, is not representing Islam, is killing people
in the name of religion. We need folks of goodwill, be they Christian,
Jewish, Muslim, Sikh, Hindu, non-theist along with our law enforcement and
intelligence communities, to pose a global united front to eliminate this
HAYES: What`s your response when you hear a presidential candidate like
Donald Trump, who`s a front-runner in the Republican field, talk that, you
know, maybe you might have to close down mosques in the U.S.?
CARSON: Well, maybe -- you know, that same kind of conversation, I think,
is unacceptable. If we look at the scores of folks who claim to represent
Christianity, decades ago, who were affiliated with the Ku Klux Klan, when
they were bombing churches, and killing African-Americans, no one thought
it was sensible enough to close all churches in our country.
I think that we have to look at our candidates for president. Those who
really are seeking to become commander in chief and effectively the CEO of
our nation, they have to understand that this is a shared enterprise.
And a part of that shared enterprise means that we have to recognize the
over 8 million Muslims who are part of the fabric of our society, who have
been here since the inception of our great nation, where you have Muslim
judges, my father-in-law happens to be the first Muslim judge in the
country. You have police officers, you have lawyers, you have engineers.
You have Muslims in our intelligence communities who are fighting to keep
our countries safe each and every day.
And any person who claims they want to represent our country should really
consider what is at stake.
HAYES: There`s going to be a vote tomorrow to essentially put -- stop the
refugee program. They say pause, but it will have the effect of stopping
it. The White House has issued a veto threat. What is your position on
that piece of legislation?
CARSON: Well, I think that the screening process is very rigorous. It
takes 18 to 24 months. It`s under review from the State Department to the
FBI, and other intelligence and law enforcement agencies.
It`s a very rigorous process. We cannot allow politicians who are elected
by the people to use this incident -- our heart goes out to those folks who
are impacted in France and other places across the globe -- to make this as
a rallying cry to promote an already-destructive agenda that is rooted in
We are a nation built on the backs of immigrants. And for us to abandon
our principles, all for the sake of a few political points, to me, puts us
at the hand of the American people next year for them to make a decision
about the kind of representation they really want in Congress.
HAYES: Representative Andre Carson, thank you for your time.
CARSON: An honor. Thank you.
HAYES: Joining me now, French Tunisian human rights activist, Samia
Hathroubi. She`s European director of the Foundation for Ethnic
And I`m really curious your reaction to what the political conversation
here in France has been in the aftermath. Because in the U.S., it is
focused very intensely on the Syrian refugees and then you have people
talking about mosques and you won`t say radical Islam.
What has the conversation been like here?
SAMIA HATHROUBI, FOUNDATION FOR ETHNIC UNDERSTANDING: The conversation
seems terrible and horrify, a attack that we had Friday, is much more about
terrorism. It`s much more about thinking of the roots of radicalization in
our country. But we do have also some kind of right-wing politicians
singling out the Muslim community. But at the same time, I think there was
a great resilience, there was a great sense of unity among how French
citizens and including Muslim condemning the terrorists attack the blind
violence that targeted the most vibrant and the most diverse part of our
HAYES: I know you`ve done work in sort of French, Muslim, and Jewish
relations here. France, the European country with the highest Jewish
population and Muslim population. Horrible news out of Marseille today,
with a stabbing of a Jewish teacher by three youths who appear to have been
shouting anti-Semitic slogans.
HAYES: What do you -- how much is that boiling beneath the surface here?
HATHROUBI: I mean, there was just after "Charlie Hebdo" and the grocery
attack, we finally we understand that there was a worrying discussion about
anti-Semitism and Islamophobia in France and an interrelation between Jews
And there was a momentum when people understood it was high time for us to
think and to ponder and to act, to bring about change between Muslims and
Jews in France, but among all citizens. It`s a time of unity, after
"Charlie Hebdo," it was a time of unity. I think we should continue on
this path of unity, of bringing people of all faiths, Jews, Muslim,
Christian, agnostic, atheist, to work together. I have assigned myself
with 40 organizations and people from civil society, Jews, Muslims,
Christians and atheists to work together.
I have assigned myself with 40 organization and people from civil societies
-- Jews, Muslims, Christians and atheists later and op-ed`s on Liberacion
(ph), which is a daily newspaper called We are Together, "nous sommes uni"
(ph). And I think this is the motto that we want to deliver to the
I think if there is a clash today, it`s not a clash between Islam and the
west, it`s more a clash between those full of hatred and who want to divide
us and us seeking for peace and mutual understanding, and I have chose my
path and I think I have a great sense of belonging to this country, and I
think that all the French citizens will continue on this path, hopefully.
HAYES: Last thing, the Syrian refugees have been the issue that American
politicians have focused on. My sense of consuming French media is that
that has not been a real focus in the wake of the attacks here.
HATHROUSI: I think it was a debate on September. We had a huge migrant
crisis on September, and we had hundreds and thousands of people in the
city of Paris, throughout Paris, and we were thinking about this issue and
we were debating.
But today is not an issue, because we have understood that the terrorist
attack came from homegrown people. They came from us.
HAYES: French and Belgium nationals.
HATHROUSI: Exactly. They are European.
And this issue is not an issue about Syria or Middle Eastern, it`s really
an issue about countries that need to target and struggle against the roots
of this phenomenon.
HAYES: All right, Samia Hathrousi, thank you so much.
HATHROUSI: Thank you so much.
HAYES: Next, I had a chance to visit Saint-Denis (ph) earlier today, the
site of this morning`s raid. I got to speak with a few local residents
about what they heard and saw and that`s next.
HAYES: It`s about 4:30 a.m. local time when a raid started just a few
blocks up here in an apartment. Police surrounding it and what would
proceed was a seven-hour standoff. The town here, a bit shaken today in
Saint-Denis, a working class suburb outside Paris.
The streets closed inside the security perimeter. Seven hours later,
streets beginning to fill up as onlookers come to take a look at what
HAYES: You live here in Saint-Denis?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I live in Saint-Denis.
HAYES: and you were up this morning.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Oui.
HAYES: What did you see?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): 4:00, 4:30 in the morning, getting
ready to go to work When I heard the shots, I was ready to go to work. And
I said it will be difficult to go to work.
HAYES: When you heard the shots fired, did you realize what was happening
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): Yes, I heard, but there I couldn`t
to anything. I looked outside the window and the police said, you can`t
look out the window.
HAYES: Do you feel surprised?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): Oh, es, oh yes, we are surprised.
We thought it was finished because we had a commemoration in the main
square for the victims of the stadium two days ago and we are going to have
another one tomorrow. No, didn`t expect it, we didn`t know. It`s like a
war, the same thing.
HAYES: Do, you feel that it will be war, that this is now permanent? This
is how it will go on?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): It`s an unspoken war. You can`t
hear it but it`s here. Now we know it, before we didn`t and now we do.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Those are just a few of the people Ispoke to earlier with help from
our interpreter in Saint-Denis.
Coming up, Jeb Bush is calling for ground troops to fight ISIS. An Iraq
war veteran weighs in.
HAYES: Today in South Carolina, Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush
giving national security speech, in which he called for reversing $1
trillion in defense spending cuts, increasing the size of the army and
marine corps, deploying
additional U.S. ground troops to fight ISIS in Syria and Iraq.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JEB BUSH, 2016 REPUBLICAN PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: The United States should
not delay in leading a global coalition to take out ISIS with overwhelming
force. Militarily, we need to intensify our efforts sin the air and on the
ground. While air power is essential, it cannot bring the results we seek.
The United States, in conjunction with our NATO allies, and more Arab
partners, will need to increase our presence on the ground.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: The Obama administration has dispatched thousands of troops to Iraq
to train Iraqi forces and sent a small contingent of special operator
President Obama has been wary of having U.s. ground troops engage in direct
combat against ISIS. A new NBC News poll today found that 65 percent of
Americans now support sending additional ground troops to fight ISIS in
Iraq and Syria with 31 percent opposed.
As Politico reported yesterday, military leaders are dubious of the bigger
war, but the one senior official saying of the terrorists, quote, "we can
kill a lot of them, maybe all of them, we can probably convince some of
them to quit and embrace a more moderate view, but if that is all we do, we
will be back here again."
Joining me now, VoteVets.org chairman John Sultz who served two tours in
And John, as someone who did two tours in Iraq, your reaction to Jeb Bush`s
JOHN SULTZ, CHAIRMAN, VOTEVETS.ORG: I thought the speech was limited. I
mean, he didn`t say a whole lot. You know, just throwing ground troops in
the war against ISIS doesn`t
really tell us what you want to do. I think that`s par for the course for
a lot of the Republican candidates.
You know, Ben Carson still thinks, for instance, that there`s Chinese
troops in Syria. So, I would have hoped that Jeb Bush would have
know, how many troops we needed. What is our position with Bashar al-
You can`t really talk about Iraq without talking about Syria. The
situation on the ground in Syria is very complicated.
So throwing our troops in like that and allowing them to be a part of this
conversation without any strategic framework as to how we would use them or
how many I think is putting the horse before the carriage.
HAYES: I was talking to someone the other day whose son had served in Iraq
during the insurgency there and, you know, he was saying this, that if
ground troops were to enter the Syrian war, which is one of the most
complicated battlefields on Earth, probably the most complicated, a
significant U.S. presence would almost immediately probably unite all
factions against it.
SULTZ: That`s what happened in Iraq.
I mean, when I left Iraq in 2011, we were fighting insurgents in northern
Iraq, who had come over from the Syrian side, many of which were the Sunni
insurgents that now fight Bashar al Assad.
And when I was down in Baghdad, Iranian-backed militants were, you know,
rocking our bases with 240 millimeter Iranian made rockets.
So, if we took out -- if we went into Syria, I think that`s the big
framework that I would have hoped that Jeb Bush would have articulated
What do we do with our relationship with Bashar al Assad? Is it our policy
of the United States government once we were to wipe out ISIS, that we
would continue to topple the regime? I mean, on the Assad side, you have
Iran, Russia, and Hezbollah. And you have the Saudis supporting the
So, essentially, everybody would unite against us in Syria, much like they
did in Iraq. Unless we can somehow do what John Kerry`s talking about,
which is bring the Russians and the Iranians to the table, with he Turks
and the Saudis and try to create a post framework in Syria.
But without that conversation, he`s absolutely right, everybody in Syria
will try to kill U.S. troops.
HAYES: There`s indications -- or there has been some movement towards some
sort of temporary cease-fire today. News today of some factions agreeing
to a cease-fire in Guta (ph), in Syria, that crossed today.
But John, the polling that shows now that Americans have been in poll after
poll, very wary, very reluctant to send American troops back into war in
the Middle East. This polling today really caught me by surprise. I have
got to say. Although, given the tenor of the political rhetoric and the
media coverage of the last four days, perhaps not surprising, your reaction
to that poll?
SULTZ: I`m disappointed, you know, by the polling. And I understand
people are scared, but in reality right now, the way the situation is in
Iraq and Syria,
you know, for instance, in Iraq alone, the Iraqi army has never conducted
offensive combat operations. So we can go in there retake, you know,
basically huge footprints of the country. The Mosul sector, the Tikrit
sector, the Anbar sector. We can occupy that land. We can put division --
it would take thousands and
thousands of troops to do this -- reinstall the Iraqi army, and we`re back
to where we were in 2012.
So, I don`t think people understand when they`re talking about putting
troops back in the region, you know, we`re basically back to where we
started from, which is stuck there. And it`s endless war for this country
and we`ve got to be more
sophisticated than just throwing our troops back into the middle of the
But when people want war, unfortunately, politicians give it to them.
HAYES: John Sultz, thank you very much.
SULTZ: Thank you.
HAYES: Earlier this year, two gunmen targeted the office of satirical
magazine, Charlie Hebdo, killing 12 people.
Ahead, I`ll speak with a journalist who once worked with the magazine about
the aftermath and the latest issue.
HAYES: Here in Paris, citizens are trying to push through mourning and
fear and high apprehension and try to process what might be next, without
losing the values they hold dear.
I spoke with the former journalist for the French satirical magazine
Hebdo. That`s next.
HAYES: Just over ten months ago, two armed men forced themselves into the
offices of the French satirical magazine, Charlie Hebdo, killing 12 people
injuring 11 others, the two brothers responsible for the attacks,
radicalized French-born Muslims. The ranks of the magazine, which had
featured pictures of the prophet Muhammed in the past, where gutted by the
They continued publishing.
This week, Charlie Hebdo released its first issue since last Friday`s
deadly attack. The cover reading, quote, "they have weapons, F them, we
That second line is blurred, because it contains an expletive.
Earlier today, I spoke with Caroline Fourest, a journalist who formerly
wrote for Charlie Hebdo. I started by asking her what the last several
months have been like since the death of her friends and colleagues.
CAROLINE FOUREST, FRM. CHARLIE HEBDO WRITER: A lot of adversity.
And I would tell you that it`s not only that we have to, of course, try to
recover from the sadness and, yeah, really sad of losing a lot of fantastic
there and missing them. But also that we have to fight so hard to defend
memories, to defend what is Charlie Hebdo against propaganda, against
HAYES: The latest cover is sort of instantly iconic with someone drinking
champagne and, you know, the champagne coming out of bullet holes, and it
you know, they have guns, screw it, we have champagne.
This is exactly Charlie Hebdo and this is exactly what we feel. Strangely
sad and strangely proud of what we are, because we love to live in Paris,
we love to drink champagne, we love to be exactly the opposite of ISIS.
HAYES: So I wonder how you see this playing out, particularly in the
context of the hard right and the Front Nationale, that you have basically
spent your whole
career railing against.
FOUREST: Yes, and we are, of course, very, very concerned about how some
radicals can explode this massacre, of course, always.
Actually, since the 7th of January, we are living with these two fears, all
the time, together -- the fear of being attacked and killed by the
Islamists and the fear of being used by some racist parties.
But the way to fight both is really to stay very calm, very focused,
explain, and explain that of course we have to do something. We cannot --
we cannot just say, don`t fear, it`s okay, it will go away. No, it won`t
go away. We know that we are probably ten years of attacks in front of us,
if we don`t do something about
ISIS in Syria, but more than that, because it`s not only a war, it would be
too simple if it was a war. It`s even more than a war, actually, it`s a
fight against the totalitarian movement with recruiting among us.
HAYES: So then, what is the answer here? I mean, obviously, there are
very intense social strains. There`s a kind of combination in France of a
group that is, you know, from a different ethnic background, religious
background, and also relatively socioeconomically deprived, right? All of
those things sort of running together, as the background context for that
kind of recruitment.
FOUREST: What is true is that we are facing a big challenge, because, why?
ecause we have high, high level of Muslims in France, far more than in my
countries. The huge majority of them are secularist, open-minded. They,
of course, have nothing to do with those crazy killers.
But as their -- they are not only Muslims, it`s very important, they are
coming from Arab countries. It`s not like the Pakistanis in England. It`s
not like many of the Muslims of USA, they are coming from Arab background.
And because of the colonial past of France, they don`t identify themselves,
not, of course, to the killers, but many more to a certain propaganda who
say that France is Islamophobic. And this is because they feel and they
believe that France is
Islamphobic, that they can support sometimes the radical propaganda.
But this is where we don`t have enter in that game and to play it, because
honestly, we are one of the country where equality, of course, it`s not
perfect, but quote me a country where it is.
HAYES: Do you think that we will see, you know, it can be sort of a self-
fulfilling prophesy on both sides, this is what I`m hearing from you,
right, when people say that this sort of upholding this French tradition of
to discrimination of Muslims and people start to believe that, right?
And then at the same time, you have in the wake of the attacks, people,
demagogues who want to essentially say, all the Muslims of France are a
fifth column. They need to be treated harshly. We need to change our
laws. We need to crack down. We need to close mosques. Those two kinds
HAYES: ...they sort of reinforce each other.
FOUREST: They are fueling each other, of course. And this is why it`s so
important to sort of defend this secularist, leftist balance way to see.
We want to live together in fraternity with some rules. Wwe`re not going
to excuse everything. We are not going to say that terrorism, it`s okay,
because it`s just a way to fight against discrimination. And it is so
important to say that, because we don`t want to let the National Front and
the extreme right appear to be the
only one who have solutions, who are standing in front of this fear of
But if those attacks continue in Europe, every month, of course, in ten
years, we will have a fascist Europe, of course, because people will lose
their nerves. They will lose patience.
And this is why it is so important for us, the democrats. I mean, the
democrats are not -- the people from the right wing or the left ring, but
the people who believe that we have something very strong in common front
of those (inaudible), that we stand up, that we say, there is other way to
Like, continue to love. Like buying Charlie Hebdo. Like drinking, like
HAYES: We`ll be right back with more on the ground in Paris and I`ll tell
you what struck me about the difference between the reaction here and in
HAYES: It`s been striking here the last few days to compare the French
discussion in the aftermath of the horrific attacks with the American
In France, there has been very little focus on the refugee crisis, though
it`s been a huge political debate for months and months and months here.
That`s because as of now, all of the assailants have been identified as
French or Belgium
or EU nationals.
I think that the French have the feeling that there`s not just some faucet
they can turn off and the people who did this were French or Belgium or
European and had passports and citizenship and the problem is much more
There`s a lot of talk about fighting ISIS in Syria, but none of the focus
on the Syrian refugees we see in the States.
In the States, on the other hand, all of the focus has been on the Syrian
refugees, despite the fact that the U.S. is removed by an ocean and a long
bureaucratic process from the tens and hundreds of thousands of refugees
that have been streaming from the Middle East up into Europe.
You know, sometimes in the wake of a crisis or a tragedy, people say,
something must be done, and this is something, and therefore, it must be
done. And it`s that kind of reasoning, frankly, that has gotten us into
some of the most destructive debacles in recent memory. Let`s not forget
that in the wake of the anger and grief people naturally feel at the hands
of the mass slaughter that`s happened in the streets in Paris here.
That is ALL IN for this evening, live from Paris.
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY
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