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tv   Key Capitol Hill Hearings  CSPAN  November 15, 2016 4:45pm-6:46pm EST

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system, or open office word processing system. and to get different models of innovation, even for other things. i think one of my favorite examples is a kick starter, right? the idea that somebody could have really cool idea, and a lot of times they have patents or trademarks on it, and sometimes they don't. but the way they talk about their idea is by saying, let's get a crowd of people who will be willing to contribute enough money to make it worth my time to manufacture it, put together this piece of hardware or do a number of things. i think that's in a sense really turned on its head the traditional way we view monetizing ideas, which i have an idea, i have a patent, and the exclusive right to and now i can make money. i'm going to ask money for it first and then make my idea. so i think we're starting to see new business models and new norms about how innovation can happen.
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you know, as technology develops and as we have generational change. that's really exciting to me, i think. >> questions? >> so, a question on tinkering. as we especially as -- as we move towards more software that is touch enabled or voice enabled, i used to work at apple, and i could tinker and make siri read things for my blind customers, but then they started locking audible down or kindle down and i couldn't make siri read for customers and they had to find a different app. what is the solution in tinkering when it comes to disability and making sure we are innovating for all groups? >> let me start by saying, i've now learned that if i need to replace a glass on my ipad, i'm calling charles. so we've got a tinkerer right here. there are lots of challenges in
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terms of this. we were talking about this beforehand. i think all three of us share this. it's not always property or always patents. you mentioned the end user license agreement. a lot of these are simply business transactions. and most of us, we want that app. and so we're allowing it to get all this personal information. although when you read it, you're like, why do you need all this stuff? and so maybe that's where consumers can step in. and sometimes it hits on the intellectual property, but a lot of times it's just more of a pure business model. >> i agree. she is the expert. i'm going to go to you, actually. you know, i think that it's right, a lot of these are businesses. this is an agreement or dispute between apple and amazon on the
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issue of whether or not you're going to be allowed to play voice things over the system. and i think at least the first answer is that the people who are using these things just need to express that this is bad. back when apple was thinking of, i think, moving all of their itunes music to drm formats, that you wouldn't be able to move onto different devices. there was a huge public outcry over that, and they actually walked that back and introduced the new format for like $1 more per song. these companies, they have to be responsive to consumers' concerns, and if people say, look, this is not what we want. we want to be able to tinker, we want to be able to put our music on different devices and things like that, i think they, you know, as a business matter, have to listen. >> i think we can fit in one more question. if not, i will ask one of my
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own. anyone? no? okay, great. we've talked a lot obviously about specifics in terms of ownership and what we are losing, what we are gaining. but i feel like broadly, the average american might not know what -- they might not realize the implications, they might not realize they cannot alter or tinker or have someone else do it for them. how do we communicate those issues to the public? >> so that's something that we think about a lot at the u.s. patent and trademark office. i mentioned our camp invention program. we have on the 3rd and 4th of november, they're out there talking to schools and educators. it really has a lot to do with consumer awareness, i think. i think at events like this are useful. and it's online. so we'll be able to share that.
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i do think, too, and charles can speak to this, there are times where consumers rise up and can speak more broadly, and be heard. because ultimately that's what matters, right? the power of the consumer. >> yes. of the consumer. >> just very briefly, i think that's exactly right. these issues affect consumers all the time, whether or not they realize it or not. it's just a matter of realizing that all those contracts that you sign actually mean something. you might want to actually consider what the policy issues are behind that. i think people are starting to realize that. >> read the fine print. all right. thank you so much, everyone. great to have you. [ applause ] [ room noise ]
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house republicans have settled on their leadership for the next congress. the entire slate was reelected unanimously. paul ryan will once again be house speaker with kevin mccarthy at number two at majority leader. steve scalise will continue as whip. cathy morris rodgers will be conference chair. president obama has embarked on his last trip as chief of the u.s. he will be in greece tomorrow. on thursday the pretty will make his sixth visit to germany for meetings with chancellor angela merkel and other leaders from france, the uk, and italy. on friday the president will attend the asia pacific economic cooperation summit in peru before he comes back to the u.s.
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republican donald trump is elected as the next president of the united states. and the nation elects a republic republican-controlled house and senate. follow the key event on c-span without interruption. watch live on c-span. watch on demand at or listen on our free c-span radio app. with donald trump elected as the next u.s. president, melania trump becomes our nation's second foreign-born first lady since louisa adams. c-span's book "first ladies" is a look into the personal lives and influence of every presidential spouse in american history. it's a companion to c-span's well-regarded biography tv series and features interviews with 54 of the nation's first ladies, historians, biographies
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of first ladies, and archival photos from each of their lives. "first ladies" is available wherever you buy books, and now available in paperback. c-span. where history unfolds daily. in 1979, c-span was created as a public service by america's cable television companies and is brought to you today by your cable or satellite provider. up next, national security and terrorism experts discuss how news and social media shape public reaction to terrorism. panelists talked about a report that examined how city officials, social media participants, and journalists responded to the orlando pulse nightclub terrorist attack. this is about two hours.
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welcome. i'm pleased to introduce this event on terrorism in america in the digital age. my name is tom glaisyer. i am a program director at democracy fund. two sister organizations founded to insure that the public comes first in our democracy. voices dedicated to helping america build a stronger, healthier organization. like our sister organization, the democracy fund, we are working to ensure that our political system is responsive to the public and able to meet the challenges facing our nation. we seek to do things that make
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democracy work better. i focus on strengthening media with priorities on reducing information and exploring engagement practices. however, as a political fearmongering and demagoguery heated up this november, we asked ourselves not just what role we could take to make things better but what dangerous scenarios could take place that could actually make things even worse. quite frankly, we were concerned in the current election cycle and how it could speed the erosion of democratic institutions. while emergency might have spent significant time thinking about public responses to major disaster. little attention is focused on how major shocks and disruptions can damage political institutions and processes. the paper launched today on the event provided tremendous opportunity to explore strategies for developing greater resiliency.
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it is our hope that expert reports on this topic will prompt conversations among journalists, technology companies and others about the practices that are employed to respond to the unthinkable and how these responses can strengthen rather than threaten the health of our democracy. i am very much looking forward to the discussion this is afternoon. without further comment, on behalf of my colleagues, i would like to pass the mike to sharon. thank you. >> thank you very much, tom. welcome all of you that are here today. and all of us joining online. i am sharon burke, a senior adviser here at new america, where i run a program on resource security and i'm also an adviser to the international security program, the future of war, and a co-author of this report, which is "war and tweets, terrorism in america in the digital age." i am going to introduce my colleague, peter singer, in a
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moment. i want to thank tom glaisyer and democracy fund voice. when we started this project, i thought their mission was great, about revitalizing democracy and strengthening civil society, what he talked about in terms of erosion and the long-term concerns. i was with him on that. i didn't think it was an urgent, immediate problem. now, mea culpa, you were right. this is something for right now, not a concern about what happens next year or ten years from now. so i'm glad to be a part to be supporting their mission and supported by them. i also want to thank the people that worked on this project, lisa sims was the project coordinator, david sterman and peter bergen and his team advised us and helped us throughout. peter is currently in iraq. he couldn't be here. we very much appreciate his work and all of the communications team here at new america that puts on these events. i'm going to start by summarizing our report and get
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into a conversation with dr. singer. he just came out with a new article in the atlantic that i commend to everyone here about war going viral and war in the age of social media. we are going to talk a little bit about our report and his work. what are some of the similarities and differences there. we are going to have a wonderful panel come up. i will introduce you to them at that time. we will have a discussion and some audience "q" and "a." i want to preset with you with the audience and the audience we have online. including university of central florida is joining us on line. i may look nice and friendly but keep your questions to a question or something with a question mark at the end. if you monologue, i probably will cut you off. i'm not that friendly. first, peter singer is here at new america. he is a strategist and senior fellow. i am looking at his bio to make sure i get the key points. but i don't need it.
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he is one of the top national security experts in this country. he has a really interesting focus on technologists. he is a trend spotter and always ahead of the game and operating in just about every sector you can. he is advising governments, hollywood and technologists. i am delighted you could join me to open this up and have a conversation. first, our report. when we started this report, we wanted to look at terrorism in america and how people react to terrorism. of course, in the middle of our study, the attack in orlando at pulse nightclub happened. that changed what we were looking at a little bit. to put it in a broader context, peter bergen and his team have done a lot of work on what's happened in america since 9/11. there have been 147 americans killed in terrorist attacks. 94 at the handed of jihadists.
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more recently, the places that will ring a bell are san bernardino, orlando, of course, which is a case study in this report, minnesota, the stabbing in minnesota, new york city, new jersey and maybe even north carolina recently. it is too soon to tell what the details of that attack were. it is possible that was also a terrorist attack. political violence in this country. we have had a history of it for a long time. it is not all jihadi violence. everything from the weather underground to possibly this new attack in north carolina. as i said, hard to say at this time. it is not possible to stop all attacks for all time no matter how good our intelligence operations are, no matter how good our military is and very good, gentlemen, we know that. we have had a couple of army officers here, which is terrific. we can't stop everything for all time. so what do terrorists want? more than 30 years ago, prime minister margaret thatcher said that publicity is the oxygen of terrorism.
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what they want is to affect how you feel, how you act, how your government acts. they have their own goals. the definition of terrorism is a group that uses violence for a political or idealogical cause. that's what they want. in other words, how you act is part of their strategy. resilience to such attack should be and is part of any nation's counter terrorism strategy. so when you look back at the recent attacks that have happened in places like san bernardino. when you look at polling, a lot of americans feel like they are at personal risk for a terror attack. the risk of any individual american being attacked isn't that high. why was san bernardino a target? because the perpetrators lived there. in other words, even though any given individual is not at risk,
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any city could be attacked at any time. every city needs to be prepared for this crisis and what they would do. this is what our report is looking at. so dhs, the department of homeland security, defines resilience as the ability to resist, absorb, recover from or successfully adapt to adversity or a change in conditions. we look at what determines resilience, what shapes resilience. a big part of resilience is who tells the story and what kind of story they tell. how do they choose to shape the narrative? >> this is something that's changing dramatically in the era of social media. that's what we looked at. how is the way the story is told changing? we have a historical section in our report that starts with the world trade center bombing in 1993. we started with that bombing, because that's when you start to see live television coverage coming into play in a big way. it is also when cell phones first started making an appearance. they are so ubiquitous today that it is hard to believe there
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was a time so recently when they weren't. that's the first time you started to have people with cell phones that were going to be calling news organizations, calling government and first responders with information. so we started from there and tracked how media and this personal ability to communicate from eyewitnesses, victims and perpetrators starts to shape the story. we went from there and looked at also the oklahoma city bombing. pretty much every attack that's happened since then. starting in '93 and, of course, before that, news media was largely the gatekeeper, the narrate for, the ones that told you what the story was, what images they showed you. that starts to change when camera phones arrive, which happens in the early 2000s. probably everyone in here has a camera phone on them right now. but
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that was just starting in the 2000s. you saw that particularly in the 2005 london metro bombing that cameras, phones, pictures people took from their phones were making it on the nightly news and into the papers. 2009, ft. hood, that was one of the first jihadist attacks in the united states that was using social media. social media picked up the story and began to shape it. the boston bombing, we will hear from one of our panelists about what that felt like. we saw some big changes with social media coverage. and in two ways. officials were using it sometimes to good effect, sometimes to spread misinformation. there was a story there had been a bomb at the jfk library and the boston police repeated it. then it becomes an article of faith. also a social media platform reddit, the users really kind of ran away with the story and started speculating on who the
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perpetrators might be. when law enforcement tried to get ahead of the story by putting out some early photos and the reddit users tried to guess who they might be, they guessed wrong. they identified a picture and matched it with a student who was missing. he was not the perpetrator but the pain and suffering it caused his family was awful. so this is when we first saw social media playing that kind of role for better and worse. in 2015, the westgate mall shooting in kenya, you had for the first time terrorist group al shabaab live tweeting their own attack. again, this is a big change, right, from when news media decides what the story is to the perpetrator decides, directly communicating with the public what the story is. then all the way through today, where not only do you have that, you have live streaming. so now as i said, we spent a lot of time on orlando in our study, because it was the case study that we looked at. it happened in the middle of our research.
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i'm not going to go into too much detail right now about what we saw and found because we're fortunate to have the mayor of orlando here today and he can best tell you what that looked like. what i do want to say as we're entering -- firmly in this area where news media is not the only gatekeeper and public officials don't necessarily control the story, what did we learn from orlando and all the other cases we looked at? at a time when eyewitnesss and victims and perpetrators and even observers thousands of miles away are going to shape the story and decide how the public reacts. what did we find? first we found leadership matters. even though you have so many people telling the story, first responders and public officials still have an authoritative voice in telling the story. so how they shape it, what they say, when they say it, to whom they say it, really matters.
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and what you'll hear from mayor dyer, he felt differently about that and how he wanted his city to feel and think, and that matters. part of that is leadership matters, you have to be prepared. not only prepared, exercises for a crisis but prepared for the communications aspect and for the pace of it. in the case of orlando, this happened at 2:00 in the morning. the city had a little time to think about how it was going to respond. if it happened at 2:00 in the afternoon, they would have had to know right away. the fact they were prepared and knew how to use social media for this kind of crisis would have made a huge difference. it did, even though they have a little time to craft their response. so social media and the pace of information has to be built into exercises. second, i think we found that it's really important to give the public a constructive role, to give them agency. so one of the things that we found that was very interesting is after the paris attacks,
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recent paris attacks, there was a police operation in brussels where they were hunting for some of the suspects. the brussels police communicated to the city, please do not post pictures or tweet where we're conducting operations, you'll just tip off the people we're looking for. and the city and the wider twitter community responded and began tweeting cat pictures -- i don't know if people remember this, to the hashta hashtag #brusselslockdown. it buried things people were posting that might help find where they were doing these operations. the brussels police posted after that a picture of cat food and said, thank you, help yourselves. so again, i think not just by being sophisticated with social media but by giving victims a way to not feel like victims, it helps with resilience. include communications and social media use and planning in
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real life really do as public officials and first responders need to know, need to have practiced and incorporated social media into your operations, even for a small city. finally what we found was it's important to empower your local press. of all the press it tells the story they are part of your community, so they have a vested interest in the community being resilient because they live there, because their families live there. they also have the most local knowledge. so local press, even though they are under a lot of pressure right now from all kinds of competition still has an important role to play. as they change and become a different kind of press that will continue to be true. then finally social media companies we think need to embrace their responsibility here. they are the mass media of choice toward many, many people now. whether they see themselves in that light or not, it is the truth. some companies such as facebook have been pretty forward leaning and trying to understand what that means. they have community rules.
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they are experimenting with how to improve them. they are experimenting with how transparent to be. they are experimenting with collaboration with the government. facebook is by far the most used social media company and they try to embrace this role. they have people who look at counter-terrorism on their staff. so that's a good thing. there's also a lot of companies who will say things like twitter has community rules, we speak truth to power. that's great. but that tension between dangerous speech and free speech is very real and not something you can easily dismiss. a place like reddit where they can say we don't get into that, but, you know, that rings hollow with something that happened like with the boston bombings where you ruin somebody's life. so social media companies need to embrace their role and the fact they are mass media companies at this point. with that i'd like to turn to peter. peter's article in the atlantic
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is called "war goes viral." he focused on the side of the equation, partly how this is a weapon and how isis and others use it. i have my notes, all the things i want to talk about. the first thing i want to ask can you define home off -- homopholy for us. >> it's the definition of love of self. what happens, there's an idea, seeming contradiction where this technology is supposed to be bringing us together. we're searching out and finding validation in people who think like us already. so you can see this in everything from sports. you connect to people who like the same team or hate the same
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team to the election where all the information is online. if you watch the facebook feed of a trump supporter versus a hillary supporter, they are in fundamentally different worlds. so you create these kind of ecochambers and it's the same thing happening on the violence side as well. to pull back on all this, what we were wrestling with in the project, and this was with emerson brookings, who is on the council on foreign relations is how the internet it's self is changing and how that affects all of us. the internet has gone from being used merely to transfer information back and forth, me e-mailing you, to also collecting information about the world around us. so your average smartphone has over 20 sensors on it. the camera, to geolocation, you name it.
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actually when you crunch the numbers, we have roughly 6 billion things online right now, the internet of things, smart cars, et cetera. you get up to 50 billion. actually that leads to a trillion sensors out there, things collecting information. the other shift is what you're talking about, the rise of social media, we're not just collecting information, we're sharing it. we become distributors of information in the way media used to be. so the result is every single actor in violence is online, be it isis, be it the u.s. military, be it the russian military, and every single act of violence is being talked about online usually in realtime now. often first. again, that's true whether you're looking at the case of the attack in orlando where, you know, literally the club's -- if i recall correctly, the club's
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facebook account. >> seven minutes. >> seven minutes. it's telling people inside the club to run, yet you and i can track it from afar to right now you can track the battle with mosul via everything from a youtube channel to instagram. this is something new, something different. >> the reason i started asking a specific temple is -- specific term is you're painting a picture that it's this world of information and informers but also a world of selective truths and untruths. that makes it different, right? people are deciding which pieces of that they want to hear. >> the way i frame it is, there's arguably no more secrets, but the truth is being buried beneath a sea of lies. we can see that playing out in everything from electoral politics today and how that links to russian information warfare campaigns to the discourse over terrorism. you name it. the homopholy side comes in
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because it's strange, the way we think. we're more likely to believe information that connects and links the way we already view the world. when they did a study of what goes viral, it's not -- what you are most likely to share online. what you are most likely to share online is not defined by its truth whether it's true or not. it's by whether it validated what you thought before and how many of your friends already shared it. so there's a little bit of a peer pressure side. the other thing that's disturbing, when you confront someone with a counter-argument, even if it's true, they are actually more likely to dig in and hold to their old belief rather than change their mind. if i say you're wrong and present facts to show you're wrong, you're actually less likely to be persuaded. >> you don't mean me personally. >> again, we all kind of feel
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that playing out in the election right now. >> take that and tell us in the article you went to -- you talked about isis. so that's the general sort of swirling backdrop against which they are operating. if i remember right in the article, you know, a lot of people are talking about they are social media geniuses. i think you called them talented plagiarist. >> strategic plagiarist. >> so isis is using social media in a way that's new and not new. talk about that, the way in which they are using it as a weapon. >> they are in some ways new. one analyst put it, first arguably terrorist group to own both physical territory and digital territory. but you see echos in what they are doing with the classic story of terrorism itself. terror doesn't take place in alley ways. you go back to attacks in judea,
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back when zealots are attacking roman soldiers or sympathizers. they're making sure to do it in the square where everyone can see it. to more recently, terrorism was defined as theater of violence, a top analyst described it. they are trying to do it in public. persuade -- it's all about emotion, publicity. the same thing if you look at their use of social media. on the one hand, they are advancement. it's amazing to compare how al qaeda communicated back to using vcrs and cable tv to now the social media side. but much of what they are doing you can see parallels in what are our best practices online. so they were going oh, my goodness. they launched their mosul offensive with a hashtag, which is what any video game or movie would do. they are highly visual. again, they try and work the system to their advantage, so go
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back to that mosul operation, they created an app for it that then spun out 40,000 retweets so that then their message started to trend. they had twitter's algorithm sort of work for them, the same way, again, a political campaign would do it. they try to hijack conversations. they jump into conversations on everything from the world cup to interviews with minor youtube celebrities so they can get attention. another example would be the buzzfeed style. they don't just have one message. they push out multiple messages. buzzfeed puts out roughly 200 stories a day. one of them takes off and the others do not. same thing in isis messaging. the other part, which is the tactic used by everything from, you know, the real strategists of social media, katy perry and
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taylor swift, it's the combination of being very strategic and tailored and also simultaneously authentic. so katy perry arguably has the most twitter followers. she mixes promotion with very personal kind of messages that are dashed off quickly in a style that sort of connects to her followers. the same things if you look at what isis is doing, it's a mix of messaging and very kind of personal so you see everything from battle footage to a guy complaining about everything from having potato peeling duty to putting up instagrams of his cats to musing on the death of robin williams and what the isis fighter thought about jumanji. then what's happening is, they are connecting to people who are like-minded, and they are taking the message into a different space where the cultivation began.
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it's the same thing that happened in online dating. you meet someone who sounds like you and take the message to the side and talk further. that's where we're seeing recruiting. it's partly in the open but also moving to a more personal level. >> so it's not just a nonstate group trying to look bigger than it is that's using this technique to a greater advantage. it's also the russians both with rt, their news media source online and their use of social media, their hacks, all that. also you talked about in your article cyber nationalists of china. i you talked about rt's role in the brexit vote. also the quote that really caught me you said something about it, it's a world without facts. so my question is, bundling all
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of that together is so what do we do in this world? how do you consider or how do you fight or deal with the fact you have isis to rt to cyber nationalists who are trying to influence your public and tell the story. have you seen good strategies? what do you think a good strategy is? >> i love the message you have in your report. in discussions of everything from terrorism to cyber security, we're constantly using the two ds, defense and deterrence. keep the bad guys out and/or scare the bad guys away. and in terrorism, in cyber security, and in this information warfare side, that is a losing game. as you put it, it's never going to give you 100% security because, one, there's actors that aren't deterrable. there's other actors already on the inside, so you can do whatever you want on the immigration on
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the wall side but inside, same thing in cyber security. instead, the magic word should be resilience. how do i power through the attack? how do i, to go back to use the taylor swift reference, shake it off. how do i recover quickly when i've been knocked down. it's the same thing when you're thinking about information warfare. the best way to respond is to be resilient. the best way to keep from being manipulated is to know that someone is trying to manipulate you. and again, shrug it off, power through it, push out alternative messages that are just as adept, bury the lie in a sea of truths. that -- the challenge, and i think your next panel is going to get to this, it's the same thing again in all of these spaces, cyber security, terrorism, information warfare side is, is our current
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political system and media one that incentivizes resilience or rewards hysteria? is it one where the gate keeper, so to speak, whether it's a gate keeper who is an editor on a cable tv show, a gate keeper in terms of a media company, social media company, a gate keeper in terms of a politician, are they incentivized to ramp up the anger, ramp up the fear factor, ramp up the uncertainty, or are they incentivized to say we will power through this. i worry about that right now. then of course you get the partisanship side, to go back to where we were before, is it worse where they are existing in two different
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worlds? it's hard to be resilient if you and i have a different set of facts about what happened. that's one of the major challenges of our democracy right now is how does it become more resilient to these forces? >> that's great. it's a terrific opening conversation for us to bring up the next panel. tell us before you go, then please, peter will stick around for the q&a, you have a book you're working on? >> there is a next project that will try to pull back and look at this, not individual examples, but try and figure out what's going on overall in terms of politics and war, you name it. >> we look forward to that book. can't wait. get busy. if i could invite the panel to come up right now. i will introduce them to you. this is a very distinguished panel. we want to make sure we get them absolutely correct. we have katie wheelbarger. she currently serves as the policy director for the senate
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armed services committee and acts as senator mccain's staff lead on the senate select committee on intelligence. previously she served as the deputy staff director, i'll call you katie, on the house committee on intelligence during the chairmanship of mike rogers. katie was council advisor to deck cheney and michael chertoff in the department of homeland security. graduate of ucla and harvard law school. july i can't tell can a -- juliette kayyem served in the department of homeland security. she is also today an entrepreneur who is running her own company that gives strategic advice and risk management planning, it's called kayyem solutions. she is an on-air security analyst on cnn, so she should
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look familiar if you watch tv. she is a podcaster and author of new book called "security mom, an unclassified guide to protecting our homeland and your home" which came out in april 2016. immediately to my left is mayor buddy dyer. he served as orlando's mayor since 2003. he's a really important leader for central florida. if you think about orlando, orlando is not your average city of its size. it is one of the most visited cities in the world, certainly in this country. something like 49 million visitors a year? >> 66. >> i'm off by a lot. 66 million visitors a year for a city that's i think 250,000 in the city proper and 1.4 million in the area. when you're mayor of that city, you have a really interesting set of challenges. i have a list of his accomplishments. he opened three community venues, the amway center, dr. phillips center of performing arts, camping world stadium,
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forbes has named orlando the number two nationally bernie sanders place to buy real estate. number three in job growth. my favorite, number four in the happiest place to work. that has a familiar ring to it, happiest place to work. before he became mayor, he served in the florida senate including as senate leader. he is a very experienced politician. he's been mayor since 2003. if i remember right, in 2004 he started his tenure off with three hurricanes and a tropical storm all in a row? >> right. >> he got trial by fire. what it means to have crisis communications. as i was going through your background, i was intrigued to see you have a degree of civil engineering from brown university and jd in university of florida in some other florida city, and started out as environmental engineer. which is a topic near and dear to my heart. delighted you could join us today. katie, i would like to start with you. the question i have for you, you
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look a lot at the threat. tell us about the threat, is terrorism something americans still need to worry about, and specifically at home? is this a threat that's growing, that's getting worse? give us a sense. of the state of play. >> appreciate you having me here today. i think peter explained it in your discussion with him, gave a back drop of what we worry a lot about on capitol hill. the threat is the morphing and changing behavior of the terrorist organizations, the extent to which they are harnesses new -- harnessing new media and new communication techniques to really bring new members into their fold and also inspire others around the world, even if they are not directly members. i will say though in some ways, looking at the threat now and partaking in the public dialing, the post-isil era, if there is a silver lining to it
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is that i believe people are paying attention to it as they deserve to pay attention to it. those of us that were advocating to continue to worry about the terrorist threats the metastasizing threat around the world as different branches of al qaeda were opening and we were continuing to take in different military actions in more and more countries, there was a sense in america it was not something we wanted to think about any more or something we thought we had solved. we could deal with it overseas by military action. we had defended ourselves and made ourselves so secure in our homeland defense it wasn't as much of a problem here. i think the event, not only the rise of isil but attacks in europe and america the last couple of years have actually brought the attention it deserves. the numbers we cite are a little -- sometimes don't necessarily reflect the true extent of the threat. yes, you're unlikely statistically to be a victim of terrorism, but in ways the number of terrorist attacks we have not had is
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somewhat a sign of the success of our post 9/11 counterterrorism efforts. also we've been lucky a couple of times. i think the numbers are not what we should be looking at, but look at the fact there are growing organizations metastasizing organizations that right now continue to have people that are completely absorbed every day in doing external plotting against the united states. whether they be -- i just came back from afghanistan. i was there two days ago. met with general nicholson. he likes to remind visitors that 20 of 90 designated foreign terrorist organizations operate within the afpak area. many attempting to attack the u.s. personnel in those countries. jalalabad continues to be a hotbed. it goes back to where we were pre- 9/11. these are issues we are still
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confronting. the organizations are resilient. they are emboldened. i think they can absorb a lot of our military efforts. the coalition against isil is doing great things. some of us on capitol hill wish they could go a little bit faster. the slower the military efforts overseas take, the easier it is for the organizations to absorb the effort and to adapt to them. these are adaptable organizations. i'll end with one thought which is i'm heartened to see the report because we do spend so much time when looking at the threat focused on how is the enemy using social media for their advantage? i think it's really important for us to get a better sense of how we can better use it to avoid the fear and the terror the terrorists actually want us to endure. >> one more question for katie. which is, so what do you think, if you had to characterize the view from congress and how congress is looking at terrorism and specifically at counterterrorism and the united
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states, how would you describe the level of interest of what members of congress want right now? >> i think, obviously, they want us to be secure. if i was being perfectly honest, the perspective i have is schizophrenic. right after an attack or a thwarted attack, the talk for the first few weeks after it is how can we harden our defenses, how can the fbi let this happen? what could we be collecting more of? how could we not have known what that person was thinking. that's something else i want to foot stomp what you said earlier. we can't expect ourselves to be perfect. especially in defense. we are an open, civil society. i believe we need to do everything we can overseas to stop the organization from existing to avoid them inspiring others to do acts in the united states. we can't expect a level of perfection from our intelligence
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and defense agencies. they can't read people's minds. in some ways, you would be expecting them if you prior that. schizophrenic in the sense that immediately after attack or a thwarted attack, they want to know what happened and how we could do everything to stop it. there might be civil liberties issues that come up later. why are these agencies doing x, y and z or collecting x, y, and z information? they are trying to find the balance that the american constituency is trying to find and get back to something peter said is sometimes we can find ourselves in the media loop of we get more attention if we're hysterical, whichever direction it goes. whether it's the hyperlibertarian side or the hypersecurity side. we see that a lot on capitol hill. the little bit of the loud voices get the attention. most folks up there are strong on security and balanced in how to achieve it. but we do see the same things they're trying to address in your report. we see on capitol hill.
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>> so take that view, juliette. you have a really interesting perspective on this. not just because you're you. as a federal official, a state official. and then at the time that the boston marathon bombing happened, you were a cnn analyst and fresh off government service, i believe. not only that, it was your town, a mile from your house. so all of a sudden you're living a terrorist attack as a journalist, a public official, a parent, a resident, a victim, it was your city, you were right there. can you give us your perspective, your multilayered perspective? >> i write about it in the book. first of all, thank you all for coming and thank you. mayor, it's an honor to meet you. and katie was my husband's student. i'm sure she did well. i'll tell i am you did good in one regard. the boston marathon bombing both
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because i think it set the stage for what worked and didn't work for what happened in orlando, but also just my various roles i've had. in my life i had one career with many jobs. i stayed in federal government, as the state homeland security advisor i was in charge of the planning for the boston marathon many years before the attacks. it was very intimate with a lot of the preparedness and planning that had gone on. as some people in the audience know, the brothers went to my kids' school. they lived two blocks away from us. the father's office was -- or marbling auto shop was on one of the kids' school's corner. that was cordoned off when he went back to school later. i had this media role in which i was trying to subscribe things. here i am on cnn, all the anchors are saying, well, in new town, i was like, no, it's
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"newtin." and trying to give a sense of what was going. so part of what i viewed my role was describe how the apparatus works. why does it look like the cops are just standing there and what are they doing? also was interesting use of social media both good and bad. you showed the red it example, obviously cnn had a major reporting error on wednesday when they announced an arrest and there wasn't. but also think about thursday night when for the first time the fbi and those who work with the fbi know how historic this was, crowd source and identification. they did not have any record of who the sarnev brothers were. we was the boston police being much more comfortable saying to the public, look, there are millions of cameras at the finish line. the irony was given all those
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cameras, there was not good positioning of public cameras to figure out who they are, of public safety cameras. so you saw the good and bad of this crowd sourcing, social media. over the course of a week. for me personally, it sort of confirmed what i had been thinking about since i left dhs. there were a number of dhs people in the office. back to your point, you know, we can tend to try to rationalize away the threat of terrorism, in particular in the homeland by saying the statistics are so low, whatever. what i remind people as a mother of three, yeah, you can say that, but if my kid is that 0.001%, your statistics be damned, right? so we have to accept as public officials the intimacy that people feel and fear that they feel. that does get to what i thought was so interesting about the
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report, if i could just comment on a few things. in homeland security, we actually don't talk about the department as being homeland security. any more than would you say the department of education is education policy. we really talk in terms of the homeland security enterprise. we also talk another pivot essentially after 2005 hurricane katrina, the department of homeland security came out in 2001 and the terror attacks in 2005 is what i call a course correction after hurricane katrina in which we also talk about all hazards. those two things combined really do try to invest the communities with a sense of trying to minimize all risks to the community. so you are training your public officials for all sorts of hazards. you try to maximize all national defenses, not just federal because the department is very small. people from fema, there are less than 3,000 people that work at fema.
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the muscle of public safety is on the state and local level. you also try to maintain our openness as a society. those shifts really do complement what's going on in social media. i want to just talk about after the boom side of this and something to think about in response to the report. it is true that i think that social media has the capacity to engage communities after any disasters, but we could talk about terrorism specifically. in my field in 2001, we had a tendency to talk about to the public in a way that either made them tune out or freak out. we probably still do that. so that you're, oh, god, the world is going to hell in a hand basket, i can't pay attention. or i can't go outside my house. my kids have to wear helmets in the basement. that's how we talk to people. trying to use social media to engage people to actually do something rather than read about it, be scared about it or
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whatever. so that's where i think social media has this power to engage people in what we call the enterprise, which is the public, state and local first responders. ngos, the churches and faith based community, and certainly the network. so one thing that is worth noting is the extent to which we've become reliant on social media. i sort of put crowd sourcing and shared economy, i put those all together. using the web or whatever to you -- engage people who aren't in the same room. a lot of people are familiar with facebook's disaster pings for what happened in practice. airbnb, after orlando, certainly after paris, then in the buildup
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to the hurricane, airbnb renters, i just exposed the fact that i don't use them, airbnb, the people who put out their homes, we notify them and say there's going to be people in need. it's an incredible community, in a hurricane or terrorist attack, you can engage and use the platform. uber, a lot of you have noticed uber is helping out with influence shots because public health is part of homeland security in the sense that you want a strong resilient national. uber is trying to make people get their flu shots. there are really creative ways in which we can use people's enthusiasm but also the way that people communicate now, which is no longer i pick up a phone and call you, but we follow the same people so we may get to know each other. those are optimistic and hopeful
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ways, given that you're not going to get the vulnerabilities to zero, not in this nation. >> that's a terrific overview. the one of the ways that disaster and attacks are being communicated right now is, it's immediate and the echo is profound. how that story gets told and spread, it's not always right information. it's not always helpful information. and one of the things that's been an ongoing concern, and we'll talk to you in a second about that, is communities that get targeted for secondary violence. and in particular, arab-americans or muslim-americans. i'll foes to y i'll pose it to you, your family is originally from lebanon. that's the other layer of
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juliette cankayyem, you're the journalist, the parent, and also the arab-american. i wonder especially right now, because political rhetoric is part of this picture too, how do you feel about that, and do people look to you, as i am right now, to be an expert on that as well, and how do you think that community reacts to any other community to what's happening and the way information is moving? >> me, or the mayor? >> think about it. >> it's not that easy. >> especially because the mayor did think about it. so we looked at the case study, we spoke to you and a number of other people, reporters, your police wouldn't talk to us. but we did a lot of research about them and all of the police reports during the shooting. we spoke to people on your staff. people who live in orlando about
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what happened and how they felt about it. we're down there looking around. we came away with the conclusion that orlando was pretty resilient in how it dealt with the aftermath of this attack. and what we heard and you don't have to agree with this, but what we heard from a lot of people in the city was they saw you as the hero of this story. and that they looked to you to tell them how to feel and you did. so what i think would be great, rather than me walking through the case study is have you talk about that day and tell us the sort of chain of events, and when you made decisions about -- specifically about how to communicate with people and what to communicate. just starting with how did you first find out that this had happened? >> i'll tell you two things just to start out with. >> it's your show now.
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>> to set the stage a little bit. everybody knows orlando, right? there's not everybody i don't think in the whole world that doesn't know orlando what they know is disney is there and universal is there and 66 million visitors came to orlando last year not 49, which is the most visited place at least in america, if not the world. everybody knows orlando, but they don't know orlando and its residents. you saw orlando and its residents during the course of pulse and the aftermath of pulse. we're a very young city. we're a very open city. you don't have to be third generation to do whatever you want to do there. people come for opportunity, but we embrace diversity, quality, fairness. we are a multicultural city. that's who we were on that day. it wasn't something we needed to form and tell people. it's who we were so we had that advantage going in that day. the second thing is, after 9/11
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and then the three hurricanes that you referenced, and we had a workplace shooting in downtown that had one fatality and three injured. we do a lot of emergency training. a lot of it is weather related, as you might speculate. but we also do a lot of active shooter training. we do it not just as the city of orlando, but on a regional basis. all our law enforcement people know each other. so when they showed up that night, it's not like they're meeting each other for the first time. they're all together. they know how they talk, they know how they act. they know what to expect, and then interestingly, we had been following the national trends like everybody else and we usually do hurricanes, we do active shooter, but we actually did a table top on civil disobedience after first and after baltimore.
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it was a wild scenario that i didn't think would ever happen. it was an african-american being shot by a police officer in one of our troubled neighborhoods with the naacp convention convened in town, and a rapper that was going to perform that night. you can imagine, that was an interesting scenario to deal with. but through that, we understood how important communication was all throughout this, and we actually now had esf function that was simply social media. we actually had that esf. right. sorry about that. i usually don't bust into acronyms. >> all my life in the pentagon so i'm going to call you out on acronyms. >> but any ways, we had plans on how to communicate, for instance in a civil disobedience, it would be
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police twitter, during a hurricane would be our twitter. >> roles and missions were defined. >> right. you can never anticipate. we never anticipated what was going to occur, and it would be hard to ever imagine that that could occur. so the first shots were fired at 2:02, 2:03, somewhere in that range. i got a call at home. i was asleep about 3:00 in the morning. the call was, mayor, this is deputy chief enzoato, there has been a shooting at the pulse nightclub. there's an active shooter, there's multiple casualties and it's now a hostage situation. the command center will be set up at certain locations, which -- orange avenue, which i guess you saw at some point. my first thought, i'm a dad. i immediately the next thing i did was call my 26-year-old son trey to see where he was. i don't know that he's ever been to pulse or whether he frequents there or not, but i wanted to make sure. because
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it makes your job a little bit easier to do what you need to do if you know your family members are all safe. my wife is in bed. turns out he was in bed, as well. my next call was to my deputy chief who heather fagan who is our communications guru or queen. she's here with us today, smiling. >> everyone said tell heather we talked to you and we were helpful. obviously heather has a lot of sway over these situations. >> my police liaison was on the way to pick me up. we agreed we would pick heather up second to have an extra five minutes to do her hair or brush her teeth. >> probably the last time she did for three days. >> right. we went down to the command center and got to the command center, and it's a big giant rv trailer type of thing with basically two rooms, a command room then one that has a lot of technical equipment that's being manned by the others. we come in and it's the chief,
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two or three deputy chiefs, fbi, fdle and three sheriffs from orange or surrounding counties we had discussed on the way there, what's my role? never envisioned being in the middle of the night in that type of situation. heather and i determined we needed to stay out of the way of law enforcement because they're tr trained to do that. number two, we needed to make sure we supported and not undermined the chiefs involved. and the fbi and the fdle and sheriffs were active in that same fashion, which i just took as very professional. third was to gather as much
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possible information as we could because we knew we were going to have to communicate in some fashion at some point. >> and you told me that was really important to you, that you wanted to be able to communicate as much information as you possibly could as early as you possibly could. why did you think that was so important? >> even back to charlie, and i've seen this time and time again, if you don't provide as much information in a concise accurate way, then somebody else is going to fill in those gaps and probably with not accurate information. so the more information we can get out in an accurate manner and not in a manner that people stopped listening, but they want that information, i think it helps you serve the purpose that you're going to sefb. so when we got there the chief updated us on what had occurred. i can go through that if you'd like or move on to communication. >> at one point were you
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ready -- not until 7:30 in the morning that you had your first press conference, right? >> i'll shorten the four-hour time period or three-hour time period. the opd or s.w.a.t. team had the shooter confined to a bathroom. all of the living victims were evacuated. they evacuated a couple dressing rooms that had not gotten out early on. so really early on everybody that was in the main part were on the way to the hospital and then by 4:30 everybody else except those that were in the two bathrooms where the shooters were. >> did you know some of these people were sending texts, phone calls, and videos? it's mostly point to point. meaning, they were calling or sending video to family members or to first responders. they were not broadcasting. they were sending it to someone. >> no, they were not broadcasting.
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they were either texting or in some cases actually calling family members who were then calling 911 or directly to 911 in some cases. and some of those calls have been released. that's actually how we found the people in the dressing rooms and were able to get them out. we knew how many roughly were in the two bathrooms. we know from those you also got some inaccurate information. >> right. >> so the shooter was in contact with 911 and then hostage negotiators three different times and indicated he had explosive vests and he was going to detonate those and that he had explosives in his vehicle that was parked outside. that was confirmed by some of the people in the bathroom, so they must have overheard him tell the hostage negotiators there and then they confirmed it to 911. the guy has an explosive vest
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on. so we have to assume at this point since it's been verified that that's the case. he gave an indication he was getting ready to act. the chief made a determination at that point it was time to breach the building. s.w.a.t. had gotten into place, placed explosives between two bathrooms. they were hoping to break into the bathroom where the shooter was not so they could get them out. they put explosive charges and it did not breakthrough the wall. we have a piece of equipment called a bear cat that was then employed. i took a lot of heat when we bought that because we were having discussions about the militarization of police forces. >> a little satisfaction. >> i was very happy we had that bear cat. and they breached the wall in several different place, and we evacuated 15 people out of the bathroom that did not have the shooter. and we threw diversionary
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explosive devices in there so he was disoriented. our guys returned fire and killed him. and that was 5:15ish at some point. >> so at this point -- by the way, all throughout this, the shooter -- and you've never named him. you told me that. you've never said his name and you don't consider him a relevant person. >> once he was dead, i didn't need to think about him. i didn't need to act upon him. that was someone else's job. that was the fbi's job, and certainly everybody else could commentate about who he was, why he did it. by the way, the instant he was dead, the fbi said we're in charge. it's a terrorist event. it went from opd being in charge to the fbi being in charge, so we needed to follow their
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direction because it was an active investigation, but they had even then determined it was a lone shooter at that point. so we had that knowledge. they had a lot of information already about who he was and where he'd come from. >> by the way, he was using facebook and he was posting to facebook. he was googling himself and seeing if he was trending. now facebook was taking them down. i don't know how fast, but they were taking his posts down so they didn't necessarily get wide play but he was all throughout the attack broadcasting and trying to shape his own story. >> we didn't know that at the time. fbi assumes control of the investigation. we start the discussion about how do we inform the public. >> that's about 5:30, 6:00 in the morning. >> 5:30, 6:00 in the morning. and we actually had a little discussion about whether the fbi or police were going to leave out and we pushed back and said
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no, i have to lead out because i'm the person that they know. ron hopper is the best fbi agent i know. but when he goes out there, that's going to scare people. nobody is going to know who he is, whether to trust him or not. if opd leads out, that sends a whole different tone than if your elected mayor comes out. we got them to agree to that. i'm going to tell you quite honestly we were fortunate in that regard because the fbi's federal spokespeople weren't there until the next day. and we might not have been able to convince them, but we were able to convince the local agent in charge. >> note to fbi agents listening, it is good to have your local official known by the community in charge of setting the tone in the communications. >> so we were able to i don't want to say dictate, but kind of lead throughout the course of the first day in setting the tone. heather and i had a substantial
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discussion about what do we want to do when we go out to that first press conference. let me divert just for a second. we delayed a couple of hours until 7:15, 7:30 in that range because there was still the possibility that there was some explosives in either the building or the vehicle. >> i remember you telling me you thought this was going to end with an explosion, a suicide. >> i did think that because we believed he had those explosive vests and i was prepared for the building blowing up with everybody in it. fortunately that was not the outcome, but we still thought that there might be explosives in the vehicle and we did not think that we would instill confidence in the public if we came out and had a press conference and his car blew up in the background while we were having a press conference. so we delayed having the press conference. and what we wanted to do was convey accurate information. we wanted to -- and we talked specifically about this. we wanted to calm everybody down
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and instill confidence that we had this. we were in control. and we wanted everybody to know we were safe. so those were the words and types of things that we crafted, but i also from the very start and i guess this might intuitive, but we came out and what became our guiding principle was we're not going to be defined by the hate-filled act of the demented killer. we're going to be defined by response, which is going to be love, compassion, and unity. and that kind of rallied, i think, our community behind that. >> and then there was another press conference a few hours later, and you added some players to the stage for that one directly germain to what you just said. >> while we didn't mention the
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killer or know for sure what his rationale was, we did know who he was and his religious or ethnic background. >> and you see what he said on the calls, that he had claimed allegiance. >> yes. >> to isis. so he was a little vague on the details and he used some arabic phrases. you knew that from the very beginning. >> we have certainly seen in the past there can be hostility toward muslims and americans in that. i hadd imam that i knew and i trust come to the second press conference we had. he was right there for the second one and he set the right tone by saying this isn't what the religion is all about. this is an isolated person. we do not support anything like that, so that message was out there straightaway. >> so you didn't have to guess
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on who you could call on. these were relationships you had? >> i do have the benefit of having represented orlando in the senate for ten years and as mayor for roughly 14 years, so i've been pretty much everywhere. if this would have happened in the hispanic community -- well, it did more or less. or let's say the african-american community, it would have been the same in terms of having connections, and we work really hard at doing that, which is another part of the making sure we don't have the civil unrest that other cities have experienced, making everybody feel like they have a seat at the table and then knowing people. >> you thought about all this and you called upon the community to give a response and you gave them a role and then there were open mikes. talk to us about the danger of an open mike. >> so were you there the very first day? so the way we had this set up --
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usually, you have your press area a little more controlled than we did. once all the main press got set up, we did, but the press area got set up on a side road and it wasn't monitored that well. we came out and did our first press conference. we went back into the command center to figure out what we were going, second press conference, get more news. every politician in central florida that could reach the area had reached the area and it was open mike. people were taking to the microphone, and most if all of them didn't actually have any information other than what had been shared by cnn or the news stations, which may or may not have been accurate at that point as well. and then we were -- one of the more difficult things is trying to follow the fbi's suggestions. they were generally a little more than suggestions on what information that we could convey. they didn't want us, even though
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they knew who the shooter was, they didn't want to us to verify who they was. cnn and msnbc and everybody else is doing a profile on the guy. they're asking do you know who the shooter's -- no, we don't know. we have not verified who the shooter is. that's after the first press conference. the hardest part of anything i did that whole time at the end of the first press conference one of the reporters asked the chief in q&a said i once there are 20 dead. and the chief said yes, but it could be more than that. we're not sure. we turned to walk away and i said, chief, we've got to get an accurate count. the next time we come out here we have to be able to tell them exactly what has happened. heather was walking towards us
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with this i don't even know how to describe the expression, but let us know there were 50 people deceased, not 20. so the second press conference i had to come back out and that was the very first thing. and to your other point, one of our congressman -- i come walking out. he's got the mike giving a lot of disinformation and a lot of heated political rhetoric. it is like remove him from there so we can get down to business. >> i want to point out voters removed him recently. i'm not saying there's causealiy there, but how he chose to talk about the attack didn't help him in his re-election bid. just an observation. >> it wasn't helpful to us. >> right. >> so i had to come out and tell everybody that it wasn't 20. it was 50. at that point, i knew that i had to keep my calm and keep my cool
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because if i broke down that was not going to be good for anybody, so that was one of those really deep breathing exercises where you take a really deep breath and say everything you have to say before you take the second breath. i can tell you looking out at -- say this was the press corps. there was a lot of seasoned people there. there was an audible reaction. >> we heard that from a number of the reporters in the room, that they were shocked and there was a gasp around the room. >> it was shocking. >> one thing we heard from everyone we talked to was this feeling of being overwhelmed. overwhelmed by the information coming in once the rest of the country woke up and woke up to the news and the social media spiralled again, that the amount
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of questions, the amount of speculation, all of it was overwhelming. we heard this from everyone. from everyone we spoke to. it would be interesting to hear you talk about that, but also we were very impressed with how the police in the city used social media to sort of manage that onslaught and influx, but also how much worse this would have been if it had happened in the middle of the day. that feeling of being overwhelmed would have happened immediately. >> there's no doubt we were able to handle the communication aspect of it i don't know if easier is the right word, but in a more effective manner let's just say because we had three or four hours to get prepared before the onslaught came. we totally activated our emergency operations center. we had our communications people there. we had our social media people
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there. so we were able to -- we had somebody monitoring all the social media coming out of any of our different areas, and we had a protocol in terms of press, in terms of press requests. oh, my gosh. i have no idea how many of those there actually were, but we had a team everything filtered through that was on the city side. then i told you we had the protocol in place that since it was this type of incident the outgoing feed would be through the opd twitter feed and everybody else would take from that feed as well as our regional partners. everybody else, whether it was orange count or osceola county, was letting opd disseminate the
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message and retweeting, reemphasizing that message. >> if reporters called, they got a message that said go to our twitter and facebook. that's how they got information. >> right. we tried not to have press conferences just to have press conferences. we only had three main press conferences that first day. the second one was to convey the numbers. but also to start taking care of the victims and the families. so we had established a hotline for anybody that had information about anybody that might be a victim where they could call and set up a website that was going to have names of victims on there. that became a very tough thing to manage as well because we set up a victims' assistance center where the families could go to to get information and some people asked mistakes we made. that open mike was one. second was not having a secure location that the press could not get to the family and victims because they were there tracking people from the car to the building and back.
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so day two we went over to camping world stadium where we could park people in a secure place and they could walk in without the press being able to get at them. but late in the day, we were able to evacuate the victims from pulse to the medical examiner's office. that's a county position. the guy had been on the job a week, i think, at most. he had not even been confirmed by county commission at that point. but we emphasized to him how important his job was because if we went a day or two without identifying who the victims were, we'd have a different narrative going. he identified 48 of the 49 victims overnight. i came back in at 7:00 and that was the next press conference we did was letting everybody know that we had identifications. he was able to identify the last
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one, i think, by about noon, but that was critically important. he also had the presence of mind to take the killer into a different building and do the examination totally away from where the victims were. >> i think, juliet, to turn to you now, what you're hearing is that the mayor focused on victims. he focused on telling his city to show the world that they were -- this didn't define them and specifically they were lgbtq friendly, but also he focused on the imam and the message that this was not the community's fault. it was not the islamic community's fault that this happened. this gunman did not speak for them. now, i think in orlando you saw the city respond to all of this. however, in ft. pierce, there was an arson event at the mosque that the shooter used to worship at.
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also a mosque in tampa was attacked. so i think this generates a lot of fear in the muslim american and arab american community in a lot of different communities. i wonder if you could talk a little about that. also, there's been a lot of rhetoric in this campaign that's given people -- that set the stage for this to be an echo chamber. and i wonder if you can talk a little bit about that. >> i can and i talk about it not just because of my family, but i want to talk about it as a homeland security policy and some of the challenges or how we think about it in terms of homeland security and counterterrorism. i to -- i do want to thank the mayor. as you're sitting there, i think gosh, i hope you memorialized this because i know it's hard to
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do. you don't know for generations people will want to hear your story to learn from it and clean the mistakes. >> i have these little handwritten notes from each press conference and i kept a journal the first four weeks. >> to peter's point, when he said what makes a resilient society, i teach on resiliency. one attribute is that rigorous lessons learned. i know you will look back and know did you things right and wrong and there are questions about the police waiting and whether that was right or wrong. thinking about the obligation to unfortunately the next mayor. this idea of orlando, i had been in orlando two months before doing a speech to your police department on counterterrorism and how to think about it because they are so serious about it. was the first time i got a flavor for the non-disney orlando. i have three kids. the disney orlando. there's better than the disney orlando if you have three kids.
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it's an amazing city. if you just go in, fly, go to disney and back, that vibrancy was captured. i think that's what really helped the city in terms of that sort of sense of sort of we're in this together, we're all victims, we're all unified in the response. in some ways in this lessons learned, your immediate reaction in terms of who you're reaching out to in the community so they could be not the first spokesperson but the second, third or fourth spokesperson, the challenge for mayors that might not be as sophisticated as you are those spokespeople. you will find people on the other side. we certainly know that. a lot of times it's not the imam. the muslim community is as diverse as any other. who represents the jewish community? it's not necessarily the rabbi. figuring out who is the leading muslim doctor in the community
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who can come out, who is the leading big business owner and stuff, having multiple voices that aren't through the religious lane. because in some ways the muslim community is as diverse as the christian and the jewish and other communities. i will say, and we were talking about this before, to the extent this islamophobia and this muslim bashing is n this campai is so outside the may be stream of a bipartisan sense of what is homeland security cannot be underestimated or underscored enough. for good or bad, there is an established national homeland security community. it has from the moment george bush went to a mosque a few days after 9/11 to a very rigorous outreach by your former boss and predecessor to my boss, department of homeland security to what mayors have learned, which is community outreach through your diverse community is important. they're actually -- you know, mayors have taken on the
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department because they don't like what we do with immigration. they know outreach and getting communities to come out is the most important thing rather than immigration enforcement. it's just a complete outlier. what i'd like to remind people it's at outlier not only because we are a diverse nation and we need to be respectful of other ridges. it's actually if you ask people in counterterrorism and homeland security what makes america safer -- i never say safe, always say safer because we try to minimize risk. our oceans really help. you cannot drive from dorchester to damascus. what's going on in europe is very different. the other attribute is our
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capacity as a nation, though not perfect, i will admit that, but our capacity to integrate the other. you look at los angeles with the mexican community and you look at my city boston with the irish. they run the city or dearborn with the muslim community. that capacity to create generations of immigrants that are invested in america's safety and security is really probably our most successful and in some ways accidental homeland security strategy that has reduced the risks. if we do things to alienate those communities or radicalize those who are not or, as you were saying, the complicated nature of some of these cases, it looks like a couple of them have behind the isis sexual orientation aspects to it, they
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are questioning their sexual orientati orientation. certainly that's the case in orlando. thinking about our outreach to communities as being an important part of our efforts and the extent to which this bashing of certainty communities or profiling you're hearing from giuliani who should know better, is really just so outside of a bipartisan acceptance of how we go forward. after a crisis like this. >> katie, do you agree with that? >> i exactly do. i was going to say one of the unique things i have in my role being in congress is when i do international travel the embassy can allow me to speak to foreign officials with a partisan voice. the embassies try hard not to. over the course of the last year i go to the middle east probably every month or so, meeting with foreign officials. they want to talk to me most of all about the rise of donald trump and what that means for america, what that means for them, the likelihood of his success, what his sort of
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anti-muslim rhetoric means. i take that opportunity to actually dispel some myths that it is somehow either a majority of america or the majority of republican that believe the extreme views of the interpretation of what he's saying to put a nuance on it. some people i know can be very conservative on the immigration front and therefore even out there in america aligned with trump don't necessarily agree with his rhetoric of anti-muslim rhetoric. i definitely agree it's not helpful from a security standpoint to be so divisive with that world, with the arab world in particular. we thought about that a lot on the hill, at least among the staff that it's made it harder. i would agree the national security, i think, general view of the last year has not been particularly helpful to our safety. >> does it hurt resilience, too, is the question, here at home?
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>> i study a little bit less. there's a community of resiliency. i would to assume so. if the voices are divisive and you're putting neighbor against neighbor, that's not going to be helpful to a community rising up out of potentially bad situations. >> how much do you think -- one thing going back to the nature of the threat, a lot of the recent attacks have been self-radicalizing american citizens. it's not necessarily a foreign threat in that sense. it's a self-radicalizing group of americans. >> absolutely, and i think that's one of the most -- >> is that what we are going to see in the future? >> hopefully not. hopefully we can figure out a way to solve the problem before it gets to a point where we can't stop the threats out there. to the point that anybody is particularly disillusions or doesn't feel a strong community, you don't have to be an american
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citizen or not an american citizen. i think you're susceptible to the kind of messages that these violent organizations can put out. and i think the difference with the terrorist organizations we have right now is they're just exceptionally good at it, and particularly with isil have taken their media campaign to a whole new level. anybody susceptible -- when we are getting briefed and that's one of the benefits we have on the hill is the agencies come and will explain to us what they are seeing, it is self-radicalization. it knows no citizenship. >> juliette, now that you've sort of changed sides here, at least in terms of whether you're a public official or press, how much responsibility should the press have to people like mayor dyer when something happens? is it their job to calm the public? do they have a civic
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responsibility? do they take it seriously? are there guidelines? >> i can only speak from where i work which had mistakes. certainly people -- they're election focused right now and that's cnn. i used to write columns for my local paper, the "boston globe." i'm surprised how they do want to get it right. nothsds rk are -- in other words, the reporters -- they want to get it fast, but also want to get it other w- they want to get it fast, but also want to get it right. part of the obligation, and i think you heard in the mayor, you need to get -- you can't get your numbers wrong. that's what i see killed -- i was on the government end during the bp oil spill. we got our numbers wrong, how much oil was spilled. we never recovered from that. get your numbers right.
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take the time to figure out the bad news about 50. i probably see it less. it was the first time i had been down to an event. cnn asked me to go down. you do see the vulture aspects of it. i'm more an analyst. i'm watching tv then going on air, which i think has to be managed by a real -- the thing i saw orlando do which was a helpful lesson learned. there are so many rumors going round. there was a rumor that the body might have been a second shooter. remember, they couldn't identify the body. that was one rumor. the other one was whether the s.w.a.t. team had taken too long to go in. that started to be a narrative. what you guys did on twitter was really important, which is you acknowledged that you understood that there was that rumor mill so you didn't look like you were stupid and didn't know everyone else is talking about this. we are aware there is one more body to be identified or we're investigating this. in some ways by acknowledging it you sort of protect yourself even though you're not buying
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into that narrative. i think that's something because public safety tends to be slower than social media, and twitter trends is something public safety has to get better about, which is you see it coming. you can't act like it's not happening. right? and so just acknowledging it even i think is key. >> were you watching the twitter trends? were you keeping track of what was popping up? >> yeah. he wasn't, but she was. >> they would not say i'm the social media guru of the city of orlando. can i respond to one thing on the press though? >> sure, yes. >> we as the city wanted to get out a lot more information than we ultimately did in the early time frame because the fbi had an active investigation. their thought process was if we're trying to figure out if there are other people that are involved here, if they know intimate details of what
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happened in the club during the night and we can interview them and they have information that has not been yet conveyed to the public, that's part of our case. so the fact that they went in and we had most of the victims cleared by 2:30 or what was going on in bathrooms and all of that type of stuff we would have loved to have put more of that information out there, but our hands were kind of tied by the fbi. and even the explosive devices part of that, they didn't want us to do that, and i ended up at a press conference by mooiyself couple days later and just told that to get that out there because without that part of the narrative, if you don't know that we think there's explosives in there, again, you're left to speculate why did you wait so long. >> and in the way things move today that story could be set before you have a chance to set
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is straight straight. >> exactly right. at this point, i'd like to invite the audience to have questions. peter, if you come back up, i'll give you my chair and i'll come over to the podium so i can field questions. if you have a question or comment, please identify yourself, what you do, or who you're with and pose your question. again if you're going on a monologue, i may cut you off. lisa simms? >> i'm lisa simms with new america. >> and the coauthor of this report. >> i'll ask a question on behalf of dr. vasquez at ucf actually. he says i wonder to what degree the approach of mayor and his staff in managing information might have been under different challenges for example had a recent terrorist attack in orlando more closely resembled the dynamics of the marathon
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bombing in boston, with the attacks and suspects on the run for three or four days before they were cut. it would have made it hard to stress the community was safe and we had this under control in the first press conference. >> we had the same situation the gateway shooting which was a shooting in an engineering company by a disgruntled former employee who came back, killed one person, shot three, and then escaped. and we had no idea where he was, that there was lockdowns. i-4 was shut down so there was no way to come out and tell the community they were safe. fortunately we apprehended the guy within probably a couple hours and were able to come back out and actually the interesting thing about that is i was
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walking out to do the first press conference and they ran up and said we got the guy in his apartment. so the first press conference i was able to go out and say that we had the guy versus having to go out and say we think it's one person but we don't know that for sure. but it would have made it much more difficult for sure and i think in your study there's talk about the shootings that occurred over a period of time in this general area. >> the beltway sniper case was not considered a terrorist attack because there was not a political or ideological motive involved. however, it is instructive as to how something that takes place over a long time with a lot of uncertainties, there's been a lot of studies, social science studies that say it's much more traumatizing for the affected population when you have something that takes place that has so many unknowns where people don't know who the shooter is, why the victims are being chosen. so i think something like 50% of the people in one study were showing signs of ptsd, even if they didn't live in the immediate affected areas so it's a much more difficult challenge i think. juliette, did you have something to add to that? >> no, i think that is absolutely true because i think the fact that they didn't find
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the tsarnaev brothers for four days added to the stress of that. but just back to the point that you were going to, i wrote down your great line "defined by the response" that resiliency and i i think that was true also for boston. i mean the story, we say boston strong, which i really don't like because it makes it think it was a good mood, a strong irish stock that got us through it. really what it was, there were three people that died in the boston marathon. close to 300 people were sent to area hospitals. no one died. so for a city looking at those numbers, that's -- i mean in my world those are incredible numbers and you can't say it's good news. but when you look at the altern
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tys, it w atives, it was incredible news. news. the response right to the narrative. the rest of it can be stressful but i think the narrative of boston was also written by the response. >> i would add one thing on the challenge of those incidents that drag out is you can't do what we talked about earlier which is put out truth to control the narrative. instead, what you have we could see this moving out of the realm of terrorism, when the malaysian airliner crashed. instead the narrative becomes the hunt for the narrative. it becomes speculation, competing theories, and that's the feeding frenzy, and then in turn, that's what boasts social media, to be blunt, what cable
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news specializes in. they bring on the different competing narratives and try to have the contention around it, and we're going to have to -- i think we see from the orlando case, a case study in many ways, in best practicals on how to respond to a particular event of terrorism. we don't have the best practices i believe in these other kinds. >> that's true. we'll take the next question, please. >> thank you, i'm jeff stein from "newsweek" magazine. this has been a fabulous panel. i want to salute the mayor for telling his instructive and point -- poignant story.
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i found it very moving myself, but i'd like to go back to something peter said earlier in the subject of info wars, particularly with russia. i think you said, peter, that the answer is to bury the lie in a sea of truth. did you say that? >> well, actually -- well, yes. that's also a tactic that we may be seeing arguably with some of the massive data dumps, too. >> and yet someone else cited a study or observations that when you're confronting someone in an argument and the more facts you lay out, the more they dig in, and resist, so how can -- can you, peter, or anyone, untangle this sort of contradiction here in terms of dealing with let's say the russian info war? and it applies to china as well.
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>> i think that what we're getting at is not just a sea of truths but a sea of voices, what you were speaking about in the orlando case was there was multiple different challenges. i don't mean tv channels, but channels of information coming from the government and yet they were fairly consistent in their messaging what is both the skill of the russian information warfare campaign targeting elections. and it feels new to americans right now, but it's a playbook that's been used, and ukraine and hungary are arguably targeting brexit by the very
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nature of thieves' elections. there isn't unity. there is sides and so this may be something to hear from the others about. i've been disappointed but in some ways maybe not surprised by the reaction, which is instead of looking at this operation and the hacks, attack on america as a whole it was quickly moved into a partisan lens, even down to the fact of whether you think the russians did it or not. we are -- we've got one side of a political candidate. on the other side we've got basically the entire cybersecurity community, the fbi, the intelligence community, but still it's flown into partisanship. that makes this i think tougher if you don't have that to be, if
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you're already divided. it's just very hard to be resilient. just goes back to the success of that toolset. >> i'll just add from the perspective this feeds back into something we were talking about earlier in the extent to which something became partisan and something we should push back again as an american security threat. you sort of lost a lot of the security officials on the republican side i would say from that argument. i know a lot of people that that was sort of the moment when we can't stand for this anymore. i will add to it from my perspective we have a particular problem with the russians. they obviously are perfectly willing to deal in falsities and america doesn't want to. that's not how we behave. and yet we have multiple problems on the ioc, the russian and the nation staid propaganda machines being around for hundreds of years and now what
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they're doing. americans, we find it distasteful to think of american government doing something to counter that, and the other side of that is the way isil and other terrorist groups can use propaganda through networks and delegate that ability to tweet and send out messages to the field level, whereas we still have this knee-jerk reaction because every tweet, every tactical tweet, can be a strategic problem for decision makers in america. we have to pull up the counter messaging to the highest levels of governance. you have a white house decision on how to counter the message of an isil tweet. they're always going to be
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inside of our decision cycle and that is something from the congressional side what do we do to help the executive branch deal with these various information operation problems. >> just not on the substance of the podesta, if you're russia this is the time you manipulate the data because everyone's lulled into these aren't that interesting and they like the gossip, but this is the moment where you might manipulate it. i want to remind people there's a second wave which i find real rigging on the apparatus that do the voting. i think the story line is getting lost in the sexiness of the politics. the structural u.s. governance we have about 9,000 electoral systems in america between local, county, state.
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they're not, you know, what your locals -- how much money you're investing in your local cio and those apparatuses, and that to me is just this vulnerability that -- no reason to believe it's happening now, but just that manipulation is happening now, but even the sense that we can't control the networks, that we are dependent on for voting, you know talk about the narrative, that's a bad narrative to be out there. >> is this also as far as how we as a country defend ourselves something of a jurisdictional problem? >> i always say homeland security is not a technological problem.
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it's a governance problem. if you wanted to set up a nation if you wanted to set up a nation that from the beginning -- you want a divided government. you have state, local -- you have counties. you have a tenth amendment reserves public safety to the states. you have federal immigration laws. you're not going to solve it. on elections it's true of almost everything in homeland security having bnl on the state side but the governance tends to be the largest challenge. you allowed it a little bit. you can't tell a senator who is running or a congressman running for senate to get off the stage. it's a hard thing to do. >> it's hard to tell them they can't come in. even after press conferences how people come stand behind you, then it appears they're part of the press conference and they step up to the mike, even if you've walked away, so that's
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exactly right. >> and i think that just on the voting thing, the problem is on the local and state side. there's really no federal authority over it. we just -- we don't have a system like that, so the feds, the dhs, can provide best practices, give money to support it, but you're not completely dependent on miami-dade county investing in some cybersecurity effort, which we -- >> in florida we never have a problem with counting our votes, you can be sure of that. >> sorry, i forgot who i was sitting next to. let me choose another example. >> if we have to reconvene in a couple of weeks in light of the election. do we have another comment or a question? >> thank you so much for this
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panel. it's really very engaging. my question is about counter narratives, which was alluded to i think just now by katie. given that those who carry out these types of attacks appear to be desiring to become heroes of their own story, how do we help promote counter narratives in which they could become heroes of a better story? >> at least the counter narrative that i've seen talked about don't necessarily have them try to be heroes of a different story but make them not heroes of their own story, so at least when you're looking at sort of the way the counterterrorist groups, you're right. they try to always show themselves as being successful. right now, we're -- we have operations in mosul. they're spending their time for other attacks in other places to make them, the mosul problem,
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seem like less of a big deal to them. the extent to which we can counter that narrative showing their failure, showing they're not ten feet tall that, they have some governing structure but it's not nice to live end them that's mostly what i've seen us trying to do. the challenge is getting it out i think at the speed and volume that thus far they've been able to and to reach all the voices that you need to be able to reach. >> peter? >> this idea of narrative to use the term hero part of a good narrative there's elements to it and the counter narrative we do lacks that, and so if you're thinking about the successes here, it would be both on the hero side, so the alternative heroes and hitting some of the aims. if the goal is to create unity, keep a certain community from being demonized, this narrative that's out there, why don't muslims -- why don't they point out terrorism or speak out against terrorism and instead it's the counter narrative .
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for example, heroes in the stories that might be from that community, and so we've seen that, for example, in the par parts -- paris attacks, where it was a muslim who hid jews from the attacker in his story to i believe if i'm remembering this correctly one of the s.w.a.t. team members with muslim americans, in turn, the counter narrative against isis is to point out by the way the group killed more muslims than anyone else and that's true, whether it's, if you're looking as a whole, the story, and mosul to the victims of these bombings have consistently included or attacks have included muslim americans so when we tell the stories of victims to make sure what makes this group so anathema they're
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an attack on civilization itself. it's not just boston strong. they're going against all of us together so trying to find the key elements of narrative in our pushback as opposed to data dumps, numbers are important, correct facts are important, but also having a narrative that's thought out in your counter is key, too. >> juliette i know you want to say something. nay -- mayor, you probably weren't thinking in terms of what's my counter narrative, but you built one.mayor, you probab thinking in terms of what's my counter narrative, but you built one. you focused on the victims and what kind of city you wanted to be and that was the alternate story that you gave. >> and actually in reading your report, your paper, i think we were doing something that was intuitive to us without knowing it was in the confines of the type of response that you suggest we made. >> right, i know you weren't thinking of it in that mechanical terms. you gave a different narrative that was a powerful one. >> in hindsight i would say that as yes but i don't know that i was thinking that exactly at the time. >> juliette?
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>> i want to add something to what peter said. you think the best counter narrative is that life as a man life in isis you're going to die essentially or be killed and as a woman it's not roses and there is this, very much promoting women coming jihadi chic, having women come. one of the more interesting things that's happening is to figure out ways in which we sort of forgive the former jihadist. you're starting to see some courts, as long as the person wasn't successful or killed a bunch of americans get court, gives leeways so you can get the conversations out there both in europe and here in the united states a judge said for lesser time we want to hear your story because that story will be the best narrative, so the sort of lock'em up attitude may not be the best long-term strategy for counter narrative. >> i think one of the signature aspects of social media and peter, you mentioned it, is this like hunger for authenticity and also more humor and for making light of things. how many times in a day do you get something on social media that's funny or a joke that also seems to me is as someone who is trying to help build a narrative how do you unlock that collective thirst for authenticity and humor, and sort of skepticism is part of the challenge, too. you can't manipulate it and make it happen but when you show they say they're this but show people that's not what they are, seems a lot of times the collective will takes it from there, sometimes not always in the
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right direction but there is that. lisa, you had another? >> i actually have another question from the university of central florida audience and this is from a student. mie -- mayor dwyer, are you comfortable with plans for a scaleability twitter publicayore with plans for a scaleability twitter public relations response should the pulse attack occurred in a workday rather than at night? >> it would have been a far different experience and


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