This is a rush transcript from "The Story," November 2, 2017. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
MARTHA MACCALLUM, HOST: So tonight, "The Story" begins in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. Twenty-four hours from now the president will walk in the footsteps of every president since Kennedy, as he visits the USS Arizona. This is the gateway to the Pacific where President Trump will begin a hugely consequential trip to Asia where the threat for North Korea will be front and center. But first tonight.
Breaking this evening, the FBI ramping up its search for answers in the New York terror truck attack. This as we are hearing for the first time from the wife of the suspect. Sayfullo Saipov's spouse and mom of three reportedly telling investigators that she is "shocked and saddened and knew nothing about his plan."
Meantime, today, investigators swarmed the couple's Paterson, New Jersey apartment complex, knocking on doors, grilling anyone and everyone that may know something about him. And late this afternoon, New York City leaders, installing concrete barriers along the bike path where Saipov savagely mowed down eight innocent lives.
In moments, Lt. Col. Tony Shaffer joins me with his inside knowledge from sources close to this investigation. And Constitutional Attorney Jonathan Turley on one of the future and unapologetic suspected terrorist; how the courts will decide his fate? This is hugely controversial today. But first, we go to Trace Gallagher live in our West Coast Newsroom with new details on this investigation. Hi, Trace.
TRACE GALLAGHER, FOX NEWS CHANNEL: Hi, Martha. Tonight, investigators continue pouring over Sayfullo Saipov's social media footprints and electronic records. And we now know that along with 90 ISIS videos and nearly 4,000 of ISIS pictures and propaganda documents on his cellphone, authorities also found links to people who either were or are subjects of terror investigations.
Remember, Saipov was interviewed by federal agents back in 2015 about possible ties of terror suspects, but a case against him was never open. Though, a handwritten note on the floor of the truck used in the killings stated that he carried out the attack on behalf of ISIS. Investigators are also combing surveillance video footage to reconstruct Saipov's movements in the weeks before Halloween.
We know he rented a Home Depot truck, eight days before the rampage so he could conduct a dry run so to speak, and repeatedly drive by the attack area to practice making turns. And now, Saipov's neighbors tell the L.A. Times, he frequently rented trucks but never appeared to move or haul anything. The Uzbekistan embassy says, in his home country, Sayfullo Saipov graduated college, worked as an accountant and had no criminal record.
He also had no criminal record in the U.S. but did have a number of traffic violations in his work as a long-haul trucker. Saipov is a married father of three who often worked as an Uber driver. His wife, as you mentioned, was interviewed by authorities but claims she knew nothing. And the second person of interest that the New York Police were looking for has also been located, questioned, and released.
Finally, the Council on American-Islamic Relations or CAIR, says the mosque -- near Saipov's New Jersey home -- has been getting verbal threats, and the group is now calling on police to investigate.
MACCALLUM: Trace, thank you very much. Here now with more, CIA Trained Intelligence Operative, Lt. Col. Tony Shaffer.
LT. COL. TONY SHAFFER, CIA TRAINED INTELLIGENCE OPERATIVE: Hey, Martha.
MACCALLUM: He's been in touch with sources close to this investigation. Tony, good to have you here tonight.
SHAFFER: Good to have you with me. Thank you.
MACCALLUM: And obviously, this is heating up and they were basically combing through his apartment complex. They thought he lived in apartment number nine, he used to hang out there a lot, it was apartment number one where he actually lived. What's going on here?
SHAFFER: Well, look, I think the details are slowly coming together and showing the picture which we've speculated on, but now it's being shown to be true. Look, Trace was completely correct, this individual essentially had a number of indicators that were observable; he was behaving in a peculiar matter that was not typical. Renting a truck and using that -- not doing what, it is clearly an indicator.
Another thing we have to remember, Martha, just for your audience to kind of think about the big picture. Al-Qaeda proposed this sort of vector of attacks back in 2010. ISIS perfected this, and there's been eight at least. And again, there's a pattern that should be examined and look for leading up to one of these. And the other piece of this which we had to accept is that this individual was on the scope of the radar of law enforcement back in 2015.
So, when you look at all of these things out there, these pieces now coming together to form this clear picture, it indicates that there should've been some level of warning. I don't buy for a minute, Martha, that his wife didn't know anything. And another thing too, about this mosque in Paterson, New Jersey, I've heard multiple politicians: Governor Cuomo and others say, you know, this is a lone wolf. This is not a lone wolf; this is now a pattern that's been tried-and-true by ISIS.
And you know, while he doesn't have maybe a formal support network, the very mosque he was attending is the place where I suspect he was radicalized. Now one of the things notable, other folks talked about the fact that NYPD had a program to monitor these mosques for people being radicalized, now is turned off. So, these are all the things that were now coming together to show this clearly was preventable by the fact this guy was on the radar.
MACCALLUM: Yes. In terms of the all great points, in terms of the weapons that he had, he had the fake, you know, paintball gun and something else in his hand. He had knives in a bag in the back, which apparently couldn't reach, thank goodness. What do you make of all of that?
SHAFFER: Well, look, these guns -- one of the guns look completely real. The Crossman pellet gun looked like a real weapon. And this is one of those situations, Martha, where I don't know if people talk about it a great deal. Every single NYPD police officer has some level of counterterrorism training -- this is necessary. And so, these guys are trained to detect and react rapidly. So, they did the right thing. When they saw this guy running around with what looked like weapons, they did the right thing and shot him.
And what's notable, which is good. You know, they don't shoot to kill, they shoot to put him down -- shoot center mass. They put him down and he lived, so the good news is, I think, we're going to -- be able to find out a lot more about how he was radicalized, who he's in contact with. But the weapons clearly, he meant -- he wanted it to be suicide by cop; he wanted to be shot, he wanted to be killed, he wanted to be a martyr. And it's good that they prevented him from being a martyr.
MACCALLUM: You know, I mean, as you pointed out, he was bubbling up in little ways on the radar. And you think about this neighbor who said that he thought it was weird that he had a rented truck that just sat there for a week.
SHAFFER: Big indicator. Big indicator.
MACCALLUM: So, all of these things -- big indicators. So, if you see something, say something, and we need to have our law enforcement be able to talk to each other and have not fear.
SHAFFER: And get past all the political correctness though.
MACCALLUM: Tony, thank you so much. Great to see you.
SHAFFER: Yes, absolutely. Yes, ma'am. Thank you.
MACCALLUM: Exactly. Thank you, Tony. So, there is a growing debate tonight about how authorities should prosecute Saipov. The president tweeted this earlier today: "Would love to send the NYC terrorist to Guantanamo, but statistically that process takes much longer than going through the Federal system. There's also something appropriate about keeping him in the home of the horrible crime he committed. Should move fast. Death penalty!" Here now, Constitutional Law Attorney, Jonathan Turley, joins me. Jonathan, always good to have you with us tonight. What do you make of what the president had to say there?
JONATHAN TURLEY, CONSTITUTIONAL LAW ATTORNEY: Well, I have to say, I don't believe it is appropriate for the presidency talks about these types of cases. Presidents have normally refrained, because it can complicate cases, it can create issues for trial, particularly in paneling a jury. So, (INAUDIBLE) courts have to go through extra steps when presidents hold forth in this way, particularly about talking about presumed guilt and sentencing.
Now, having said that, I don't think that's going to make a lot of difference in this case. This is a case that, honestly, virtually devoid of any cognizable defense. He seems gleeful in admitting his guilt. There's so much evidence establishing guilt that the prosecution could probably present this case in 10 minutes and secure a verdict in about 10 more minutes. So, it will move relatively quickly. And for those that wanted it to go to Guantanamo Bay, I think they would be making a serious mistake. It would take much longer and more importantly, it would add appellate issues that he very well might prevail on.
MACCALLUM: Yes. I mean, think about Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, tried in this court system, Jose Padilla tried in this court system as well but he was designated an enemy combatant. Do you consider this suspect, we'll call him, an enemy combatant in this case?
TURLEY: Well, enemy combatant status is often used in order to put them through a military tribunal. I've been a critic of the tribunals because I think they've been another failure -- very few trials have actually occurred. Their legal status is a bit fluid with the Supreme Court. You know, we have a system to try terrorists, I believe counsel and a couple of high-profile cases. And I can tell you, the conviction rate is astronomical -- it's one of the highest conviction rates of any crime in the United States. A case like this, there's not going to be much of a challenge for prosecutors. And while they can linger in appeal, these people are in jail, he'll never see another free day in his life, and he's a virtual led pipe sentence for the death penalty.
MACCALLUM: You know, it's good that he's alive and that he can give investigators some indication of the way that he was radicalized, they can learn something about his background, hopefully. He's gleeful, apparently; he feels like he did a great job when he rammed his truck down in that bike pathway, and he feels good about that. He wanted to have ISIS flag to be hung in his hospital room. I mean, you know, this guy is exactly what we need to -- you know, we need to find these people like him who are out there in the country and who want to do the same thing, Jonathan.
TURLEY: I think that's right. I think that most of the effort in the Department of Justice in these days is not necessarily going to be building a case of prosecution; that case, he built himself and it's really watertight. They're going to be doing these hops, getting farther and farther away from him to see his circle of friends. They're going to look at his friends; his wife could very well face allegations. Her case could be more of a challenge.
MACCALLUM: Jonathan Turley, thank you so much. Good to see you tonight.
TURLEY: Thank you, Martha.
MACCALLUM: So, coming up next, President Trump's tax reform plan becomes a reality.
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REP. PAUL RYAN, R-WIS., SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE: The tax cut and jobs act will deliver real relief for people in the middle.
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MACCALLUM: And it could mean real money going back into your wallet, could it be? We're going to break down the numbers with Gary Cohn, one of the Top Economic Advisors at the center of this tax reform plan. He joins us from the White House tonight in a story exclusive coming up. Also, this evening, a bombshell admission from former DNC Chair Donna Brazile about the 2016 election, and why Bernie Sanders was right. He never really had a chance.
And breaking tonight reports that North Korea is preparing to carry out another nuclear test. It has been a while and their timing is interesting; just 24 hours ahead of President Trump's trip to Asia. Today, we got a firsthand look at the place where it all began the last time that our country went to war. That part of the story, a useful reminder at a time like this, next.
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DANIEL MARTINEZ, WWII HISTORIAN: When you think about America today, they are roots to our greatness. America's in, what I believe is the opening chapter of modern American history -- the attack on Pearl Harbor.
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PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: We're working to give the American people a giant tax cut for Christmas. We are giving them a big, beautiful Christmas present in the form of a tremendous tax cut. It will be the biggest cut in the history of our country.
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MACCALLUM: That was President Trump praising the House Republicans' new plan today -- the highly-anticipated plan unveiled earlier. Here are some of the big highlights of it: keeping the 401(k) rules intact -- remember that was an issue during the debate on this. So, in the House version, those stay intact, you can still deduct up to 18,000 that can be contributed tax-free. It limits mortgage interest deduction up to $500,000 on a home purchase -- that used to be in a million. Eliminates the state income tax deduction -- not popular in places like New York, New Jersey, and California. It increases the child tax credit to $1600. Reduces the tax bracket -- so now, there's 12 percent, 25 percent, 35 percent, and the 39.6 percent, this was in sort of mid-process concession. That will stay where it is for the wealthiest Americans. It doubles, and this the big deal, the standard deduction for individuals to $12,000 for families, it is $24,000 for some families that will take them out of paying taxes altogether, and for others, it will lower it considerably. So, as with most things on Capitol Hill, everybody agreed -- not so much.
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REP. KEVIN BRADY, R-TEXAS, CHAIRMAN OF THE HOUSE OF WAYS AND MEANS COMMITTEE: The tax reform plan that we laid out together, the president today is again changer.
REP. NANCY PELOSI, D-CALIF., HOUSE MINORITY LEADER: This a shell game, a Ponzi scheme that corporate America will perpetrate on the American people.
RYAN: This plan is for the middle-class families in this country who deserve a break.
SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER, D-N.Y., SENATE DEMOCRATIC LEADER: In short, the bill's like a fish: if it stays out in the sunlight too long, it stinks.
(END VIDEO CLIPS)
MACCALLUM: Here now for an exclusive interview live from the White House this evening, Gary Cohn, Director of the National Economic Council. First of all, Gary, thank you very much for coming on the show. It's great to see you tonight. I know it's been a busy day for you all.
GARY COHN, DIRECTOR, NATIONAL ECONOMIC COUNCIL: Hey, Martha. It's great to be here. Thanks for having me.
MACCALLUM: So, let's begin -- you know, the president said that you and Steve Mnuchin, the Treasury Secretary were going to stay behind Washington during the Asia trip to work on this. So, I'm curious about what comes next for you on this. How do you keep this passable and signable by the White House?
COHN: Well, as you know, we're going through regular order, which means that the House Ways and Means Committee released their bill this morning -- which we are very excited to see because it starts the process of going. The Senate will go through the exact same process in a week or two where the Senate Finance Committee will drop their tax bill in the next couple weeks.
And these bills will not work their way through those committees in both the House and Senate, they will all get to the floor of the House and Senate and will get voted on. Secretary Mnuchin and myself will be here to help with questions that the House and Senate have about any of the issues as they work through the committee process and they work through floor process.
MACCALLUM: Well, the Senate as they always do, has made it clear that they're going to have their own version of this bill. How much clarity do you have on what that looks like and how close the two bills are?
COHN: Well, as you know, we agreed on a framework before each of these tax rate committees started. And the House bill today that was dropped in -- has much of the framework intact. So, the tax rates that we agreed upon are there. But two key fundamentals that the president is driving, and that we all agreed on and upon are going to be in all these bills -- A. a middle tax cut, a middle-income tax cut is there and corporate tax reductions, where we drive the corporate rate down to 20 percent, and we also bring down pass-through rates commencer with the corporate tax rate. Those are the two key fundamental factors that we are driving towards in all of these bills, both of these bills will have them.
MACCALLUM: Right. So, I'm hearing that if those two things are in it, the president will sign it. And I've heard you say that before. In terms of the 1.5 number -- the 1.5 trillion number that is the allowable amount that could be added to the deficit in order to keep this under the bird rule, which means that it could pass with a simple majority in the Senate. There were some discussions today, you know, it was a dime over that in the negotiation process. That's going to knock that out of the park, is that an issue that you're concerned about?
COHN: Well, we do have reconciliation instructions, they are very strict rules how you get through reconciliation and how you do this with 51 votes. We are going to conform to those instructions; we understand how to that and that would not be a problem, that's not what's going to stand in our way.
MACCALLUM: All right. So, in the Senate, you have, you know, Susan Collins, you have John McCain, Bob Corker, Senators who have been problematic in recent months, are you getting an -- what's your indication from them about whether or not they're on board here?
NAME: I think all of the Senate wants to deliver a tax cut to the American citizens. They understand that hardworking Americans deserve to keep more of their hard-earned income, and they understand that our corporate and business tax rates competitive with the rest of the world. We have had lots of discussions with the Senators, and we do believe that they all understand what we need to do to drive our economy to keep economic growth, and it creates some real wage growth in this country, and that's what this tax plan is all about.
MACCALLUM: So, are you saying -- I'm sorry to interrupt, are you saying that those three, you believe, are on board? The White House believes that they are on board?
COHN: We're working with all of the Senators to get a tax plan that we can carry 51 votes on, and maybe even some of the Democrats come on board as well because it makes good economic sense. That's what we've been driving for, that's what we've been working on for nine months, and that's what we're going to continue to work on.
MACCALLUM: So, you know, that conservatives are concerned that there's no discussion about spending cuts, that we're not talking about changing, making amendments even down the road, way down the road on Social Security. Is that going to happen from the White House?
COHN: We've got something that's on the president's agenda. As you know, the president has a very robust agenda, we've quite a few things that we want to work on. We're working on reg reform, right now we're working taxes, he also wants to work on infrastructure, he wants to work on welfare, we want to work social security. There are a lot of things that the president wants us to get to. We've to get done with taxes and we'll get to those items next.
MACCALLUM: All right. The president said in the past, he was not going to touch that entitlement. So, we'll see if that changes as this process moves forward, and if you get tax reform passed, maybe it might open the door to some of those spending cuts that we hear a lot about. Gary, thank you so much. It's great to have you on the show tonight.
COHN: My pleasure. Thanks for having me.
MACCALLUM: You bet. So, coming up next, have heard about this? Bombshell allegations from a former DNC head claiming that Hillary Clinton rigged the Democratic Party nomination process. So, why is Donna Brazile blowing the whistle on this now?
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DONNA BRAZILE, FORMER INTERIM CHAIRPERSON, DEMOCRATIC NATIONAL COMMITTEE: We're not uncomfortable, we're out there every day, the Democratic Party, we have a robust operation. We are supporting Democrats from the top of the ticket all the way down to the core house.
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MACCALLUM: Kayleigh McEnany and Juan Williams join me in a moment of that huge story today. Plus, new threats from North Korea ahead of the presidential trip to the region; is this path to head off open confrontation. General Jack Keane joins us from Pearl Harbor, next.
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GEN. H.R. MCMASTER, ADVISOR, NATIONAL SECURITY: I think there would be a grave danger if that regime didn't understand our resolve, president's resolve to counter North Korea's aggression.
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UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Is there a difference between your team paying for this opposition research and Donald Trump's people working with the Russians to influence the election, is there a difference?
HILLARY CLINTON, FORMER SECRETARY OF STATE AND PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Of course there is, and, you know, I think most serious people understand that. This was research started by a Republican donor during the Republican primary, and then when Trump got the nomination for the Republican Party. The people doing it came to my lawyer and said, you know, would you like us to continue it? And he said, yes.
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MACCALLUM: So, there is that part of the story, and then, there are these bombshell allegations today from former Interim Chairperson for the Democratic National Committee in a new book Donna Brazile writes that President Trump was right: Hillary Clinton did rig the Democrat primaries. Chief national correspondent, Ed Henry, joins us live at the White House this evening with the backstory and this one. Hi, Ed.
ED HENRY, FOX NEWS CHANNEL CHIEF NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Martha, good to see you. It's not really a surprise that the primaries were rigged for Hillary Clinton, what is stunning is the new level of detail from an insider like Donna Brazile about the lying, and frankly, for a lack of a better word, the collusion was much deeper than we ever knew.
The bottom line is political magazine came with this excerpt from Brazile's new book where she recounts taking over the DNC in the summer of '16, and learning it was broke and being propped up by the Clinton camp. Because Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz's team had quietly signed a deal with the Clinton camp, in which Clinton agreed to raise for the DNC to keep them afloat, basically, in exchange for her season control of the DNC strategy, their spending, and their personnel decisions.
All of this happening was in private back in 2015, months before primary ballots were starting to be cast by Democrats while the DNC was publicly claiming, you remember, to Senator Bernie Sanders in the world that they were neutral. Brazile writing in this new book, "If the fight had been fair, one campaign would not have had control of party before the voters have decided which one they want to delete. This was not a criminal act, but as I saw it, it compromised the party's integrity."
Now, the Brazile confession also has the air of someone trying to cleanse her own conscience. Because remember, when she was at CNN, she got caught steering questions to Clinton before a candidate's form with Sanders after denying it to Fox. Listen.
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UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Where did you get it?
BRAZILE: You know, as a Christian woman, I understand persecution but I will not sit here and persecuted because your information is totally false.
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HENRY: Well, it wasn't false. And then, last March, Brazile misled about Clinton collusion telling Time Magazine, in reality, not only was I not playing favorites, the more competitive and heated the primary got, the harder the DNC staff work to be speciously be fair and beyond reproach. In all the months the Russians monitored the DNC emails they found just a handful of inappropriate emails with no sign of anyone taking action to disadvantage to Sanders campaign. That doesn't seem to be true. It also turns out Brazile reveals the man who help broker the fund raising deal between the DNC and the Clinton camp was Mark Elias. Yes, the same Elias who used Clinton and DNC funds to help fund that unverified dossier you heard Clinton talking about on the daily show a moment ago. By the way, Sanders today had no comments. Wasserman Shultz staff says she's proud of her work at the DNC. Martha?
MACCALLUM: Ed, thank you very much. Kayleigh McEnany is the spokesperson for the RNC. Juan Williams is cohost of "The Five" and a Fox News political analyst. Welcome to both of you. Juan, let me start with you, there may be a bit of an effort here by Donna Brazile to come clean on some of what was happening with the DNC that proves that Bernie Sanders really never had a shot given the financial control that Hillary took before the primary was even over.
JUAN WILLIAMS, "THE FIVE" CO-HOST: Well, I think that's right. I don't think anything that Donna has written is that big of shock. But what it is shocking is that it's very clear and she backs it up because she name names and describes the kind of fiscal crisis that the DNC was in that, obviously, the Clinton campaign was using the DNC as a surrogate, basically. They were just doing whatever they were told to do because they were under the financial control of the Hillary Clinton campaign. The bigger picture to me, Martha, is that an insider, a leading Democratic figure like Donna Brazile would take on the Clintons at this juncture. I think in the old days nobody wanted to mess with the Clinton machine.
MACCALLUM: Well, that's a great point, Juan, because we have seen some dissatisfaction with Hillary Clinton's book tour. You know the sentiment that they kind of want her to go away, and they want to move on to the next stage, the Democrat Party. That maybe the power behind what we're seeing here. And Donna Brazile being able to come out and talk about this. I want to put up a tweet from President Trump, now President Trump, he was the candidate back then, this was May 18, 2016, Bernie Sanders is being treated very badly by the Democrats, he wrote. The system is rigged against him. Many of his disenfranchised fans are for me. Kayleigh, what do you think about all this?
KAYLEIGH MCENANY, RNC SPOKESPERSON: Well, it looks like President Trump was proven absolutely correct. Hillary was always crooked. The system was always rigged. I know Juan said this isn't shocking, but it is deeply shocking, particularly to New York Times reporter Ken Vogel who asked about this and the DNC said you're off face, this didn't happen. But what did happen was there's basically quid pro quo corruption. The DNC was having their debt dissolve by Hillary Clinton, and in return Hillary Clinton, of course, got to control the DNC. And not only that, they were silencing Democratic voters. And remember, fabricating stories about Bernie Sanders during the primary, their own candidate, when they floated the idea of calling him an atheist in Kentucky and Virginia. A False attacks on Bernie Sanders, he was not an atheist, he came out and said that, but they said that these fabricated stories to try to drown his candidacy. Their own candidate, let's remind everyone.
MACCALLUM: Yeah. You know one of the things I found very interesting here, Juan, is I remember Hillary Clinton saying, and this is in the post -- you know, after the election is over, that they've got nothing. They've got no help from the DNC, that the database was terrible, that they were broke, I mean, so is that part of this story as well? I mean, is she going to argue that we've had to take over the finances because it was such a mess, or does that indicate that they were much deeper in much earlier on that she's willing to admit?
WILLIAMS: Well, I think they were clearly, deeply in. I don't know how deep it went. In fact, they were controlling all the data. I mean, remember, Bernie Sanders is not a Democrat, he's a socialist. So he doesn't have a history with the state parties that the former first lady and her husband, the former president would have. I will say this it would have been fascinating to see the populist Sanders against the populist Trump.
MCENANY: But Juan.
MACCALLUM: I remember all those people -- at the Democratic convention right before Hillary got on that stage, all those Bernie Sanders supporters holding up their signs in protest. They were angry and they really felt like something crooked has happened, and it turns out that it was like it did. Quickly, Kayleigh, I'm sorry.
MCENANY: Yes. I'm going to say -- to say that Bernie Sanders is not a Democrat, he was running on a Democratic candidate, participated on Democratic debate, promised to run as a Democrat going forward for the rest of political career. The message that was send if you believe in the Democratic process you're not welcome on the Democratic ticket.
MACCALLUM: Thanks you guys.
WILLIAMS: You're welcome.
MCENANY: Thank you.
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MCMASTER: The goal is denuclearization of the peninsula, period.
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MACCALLUM: Strong words from General McMaster, as new reports tonight that North Korea is preparing for a new nuclear tests as the president begins his trip to the region tomorrow. General Jack Keane is here with what he calls the significant strategic objective and implication of this hugely consequential visit.
Plus, go behind the story of this historic place that we are sitting in tonight, Pearl Harbor, with the man who has made his life mission to make sure that what happened here is never forgotten.
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MARTINEZ: When they came over, battleship -- they've look down and one of the Japanese crew members said it was like looking at toy ships and they dropped their bombs.
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MACCALLUM: So the president is about to embark on his 12 day trip to Asia. He will seek to fortify our alliances with South Korea and with Japan, while engaging into a tug of war of global economic and military dominance with the Chinese leader who is emerging as the most powerful since Mao Tse- tung. President Trump has made in rows with President Xi by coaxing him to take some stronger actions to the U.N. to reign in North Korea. Still the Chinese leader makes clear his plan to challenge their neighbors by expanding territory into the South China Seas, dramatically ramping up military spending, and by demonstrating the large reach of their nuclear weapon capability to include all the U.S. bases in the Pacific as far as the U.S. mainland.
North Korea its audacious smaller cousin is hotly pursuing the same bellicose goals. Kim Jong-un has levelled open threats to the U.S. and to the president in a way that we have not seen since the cold war. It is here at Pearl Harbor where the president begins his journey tomorrow night. A place that brings us back to the morning the United States was attacked by that era's Asian menace, Japan. The shocking attack killed 2,000 Americans and hurled the United States into World War II, in a fight to keep Germany and Japan from invading our shores and to stop their steady march around the world.
Jolted out of sleep, literary, here, and figuratively on the U.S. mainland, the war came to America and we lunged back united to hang on to our brazenly threatened freedom and to protect our precious way of life. Today, 76 years later, a new threat looms. The people of Hawaii have been told not to panic but to prepare for the possibility of another attack this time from Kim Jong-un. The fear is real for Hawaii, and it is real from the continental United States. So it's fitting that the president will look back as he visits one of our most solemn memorials the USS Arizona which was hit and sunk taking 1,177 to their instant deaths. The first U.S. losses of World War II.
He will look back and then forward as he meet first here with leaders of PACCOM, the pacific command that's based here at Joint Base Pearl Harbor- Hickam which supports our air force and navy missions in the pacific. Here they serve as the westernmost protector of our country. Their allied responsibility covers 50 percent of the world's population, and 36 countries from this base. The strategic triangle of Hawaii, Guam and Alaska provide the forward sphere and the base of U.S. airpower presence. Just today, secretary of state Rex Tillerson's state department let pass the deadline on whether or not to relist North Korea as a state sponsor of terror. Sources tell Fox that that decision will likely now come after the president trip to the region. After that earlier, National Security Adviser Henry McMaster said this.
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MCMASTER: The only thing that is ratcheting up North Korea aggression is the North Korean regime itself. And so, what's important is for us to have the capabilities necessary and have them on the right locations to deter conflict. And if necessary, be able to respond to North Korean aggression.
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MACCALLUM: General Jack Keane is chairman of the institute for the study of war, and Fox News military analyst. He joins me know. General, with Pearl Harbor as a backdrop, and we look forward to this trip, your thoughts?
JACK KEANE, FOX NEWS MILITARY ANALYST: Well, first of all, that was really well said, Martha. And it's great to see you at that very sacred location in America, and is also one of the most beautiful places to visit in America. But it is very solemn, that to be sure. Yeah. This trip is crucial, very important like his Middle East historic trip, and once a year -- even more so because he has to reset the table here. What's been happening, and you mention in the introduction, China has moved somewhere between competitor and adversary, and they've been trampling on our allies national interest, eroding their sovereignty in the region for a number of years, and also at the expense of the United States.
So he's got to -- number one, reassure that American leadership is back here and he's going to do that personally even though all of his leaders have already done it before him. And then secondly, he's got major economic issues here because he pulled out of the pacific trade agreements, and yet he wants increased trade with these countries and he wants to be that trade to be fair and balanced. And then the most important part of the trip certainly will be and it'll be center stage is when he goes to China. This is the most important bilateral relationship the United States will have in the 21st century. And they are on a very ambitious strategic course to replace the United States as the preeminent global power in the world. That is the mantle that Xi has been given by the communist party congress, and they're about that business. Job one will be to convince them to denuclearize North Korea. Job two will be to bring him back in to fair economic trade practices and stop the currency manipulation. And job three, will be to convince him to re-stake our claim as a Pacific power that we're not going to tolerate you eroding the sovereignty of our allies in the region and trampling over our national interest. So this is full of substance, Martha.
MACCALLUM: You know, we look at -- we're at the museum today at Pearl Harbor, and you look at what happened then, and the encroachment and the expansion of Japan, and the negotiation that were going on, the discussion with the state department were going on for hours before the Pearl Harbor attack was underway. How is the world different now? Do you worry, you know, about an attack from North Korea or what China is really up to in a way that we did then?
KEANNE: Yeah. What has happened to us in the last few years, the post- cold war era that started in 1991 is over, where the United States was the only superpower. We returned to an era once again of big power competition with Russia and China, specifically, lesser degree with North Korea and Iran. And that big power competition both Russia and China wants to change the international order that the United States and the west established because it's not in their national interests. And this is the major geopolitical change that the United States is facing. And obviously, you add on terrorism and the growing threats that that represent, so painfully aware of that given what's taken place in the last couple of days. Those are the big contours in foreign policy and national security that were facing.
MACCALLUM: General Keene, thank you very much. Great to have your insight as we sit in to this historic spot and we will talk about the big issues that face the president as he heads on this trip. Thank you very much, general.
So we are 24 hours away now when the president will arrive here in Hawaii. Up next, a somber reminder of what could happen when diplomacy fails. A Pearl Harbor story that you have not heard after the break.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MARTINEZ: Strafing went across the deck, and I remember interviewing one of the Arizona survivors and he said he saw it and he looked down and he said, "I wonder who's going to repair that?" It was just a disconnect.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MACCALLUM: As the new U.S. faces new threats from a nuclear North Korea, and a huge array of challenges in the region, President Trump's trip to Asia will make history, no doubt. And with that in mind, we went to a place that history has etched into American consciousness, Pearl Harbor, where more than 2,000 Americans lost their lives over 75 years ago.
MARTINEZ: Pearl Harbor is almost -- it isn't almost, it is. It's a failure of diplomacy. And when that diplomacy failed two nations went to war. Today, we observe Pearl Harbor for all its lessons. Sacrifice.
MACCALLUM: Take us through if you could, Daniel, that morning. Put us back in that moment.
THEN-PRESIDENT FRANKLIN D. ROOSEVELT: December 7th 1941, a date which will live in infamy.
MARTINEZ: That whole idea of the attack on Pearl Harbor kind of inaccurate. It was an attack on Oahu. This entire island is under attack, within 15 minutes airpower in Hawaii ceases to exist. It's crippled. But the next target after the airfield were secured in Weller, and Fallows, and Hickham, and --, and Kaneohe Bay, they hit Pearl Harbor. Imagine the torpedo planes coming across this water at 30 feet, headed towards the battleships of which seven are lined up along battleship row.
MACCALLUM: Tell us about the Arizona, specifically, what the men were doing on the ship at that moment?
MARTINEZ: Well, you have a ship that was very much alive. At 8:00 the colors go up, the Star-Spangled Banner is being played, and suddenly planes come sweeping in. Horizontal bombers flying at altitude of about 10,000 feet are now attacking. One of those bombs went into the Ford Magazine, the Arizona, and exploded nearly a million pounds of explosive. The ship literally lifted out of the water. The bow cleared. She broke literally in half there, the fracture is still there, and sank down. And in that searing moments, 1,177 officers, sailors, and marines, were either vaporize or incinerated by the explosion.
MACCALLUM: That ship is still resting at the bottom of.
MARTINEZ: She is. And she is now war gray for over 900 of her crew. She is a tomb and now reef. Out of all of these dead comes new life. When it's all said and done, 21 vessels have been sunk or damage. Hundreds of airplanes either damaged or destroyed, and America has suffered its greatest defeat.
MACCALLUM: You witness four presidents, what happens to them when they are there?
MARTINEZ: The presidents have left behind great speeches.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP, 1991/GEORGE BUSH PRESIDENTIAL LIBRARY)
THEN-PRESIDENT GEORGE H.W. BUSH: I have no ranker in my heart towards Germany or Japan. This is no time for incrimination. World War II is over. It is history. We won. We crush totalitarianism, and when that was done we helped our enemies give birth to democracy.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MARTINEZ: Today, both Americans and Japanese meet here in peace to remember time of war. The visit of President Obama and Prime Minster Abe is part of the grand tradition of commander in chief coming here. It took 75 years for that to happen.
MACCALLUM: President Trump, tomorrow night, you'll be here when he walks out to place a wreath, and to visits the memorial, and to take it all in. Last question, what will it be like?
MARTINEZ: Every president is different, and every president has their -- their kind of tech questions, something they want to know and hopefully I will be able to support that.
MACCALLUM: Our thanks to Daniel Martinez who gave us a wonderful tour there today. You know there were 38 members of the USS Arizona who were brothers, pairs of brothers. And one of them who had recently passed away will be inter there on December the 5 to rejoin his brother. It is a beautiful ceremony. It's something 44 members who survived Pearl Harbor has taken advantage of after their deaths. Their families come here and their urn is taken down and they are put underneath the ship buried with their fellow crew members. A beautiful moving place. We'll take a quick break and we'll be right back with more of The Story from Pearl Harbor.
MACCALLUM: "The Story" returns tomorrow night right here at 7:00. We will be here live as the president arrives, as he gets the briefing from Pacific Command, and as he tours the USS Arizona. We will see you tomorrow night, right here live for "The Story."
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