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tv   Americas News Headquarters  FOX News  June 28, 2014 1:30pm-2:01pm PDT

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below. our show is over for today. i hope you enjoyed it and you're learning to be more of a healthy you. this is a fox news alert. the first u.s. court appearance for a suspect in the benghazi attacks wrapped up a short time ago. good afternoon. thanks for joining us. i'm leyland vittert on this saturday afternoon. welcome to america's news headquarters. nearly two years after the deadly raid that killed four americans including our ambassador, the wheels of justice are turning. ahmed abu khattala pleaded not guilty after arriving in the custody of u.s. marshals and under heavy guard. he's charged with three counts in connection with the attacks. but more charges could be added in the coming days. national security correspondent jennifer griffin is live outside the u.s. federal courthouses in
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d.c. jennifer, first time we have seen him in person since the attacks, since his arrest. how does he look? >> well, in fact, our producer our justice department producer was in the courtroom and she describes him as looking like a deer caught in the headlights at first. he had matted gray hair. matted beard. he was wearing a black sweatshirt, plastic sandals. he spoke in arabic. he had help putting the translation head set on. he listened very carefully to the judge. the judge read one count, just one count today. and that is providing material support to a terrorist group with the result being death. and we understand that that carries with it a maximum charge of life in prison. the justice department reserves the right to add more charges at a later date which could bring with it the death penalty. he has now left the courthouse behind me. he was taken away in a caravan
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of black suburban vehicles. he's being according to the u.s. marshals, he's being kept in a facility in the washington, d.c. area. we will know moral about the case as it moves forward. he's scheduled to be back in court on july 2nd on wednesday. there will be a hearing and then a further hearing on july 8th. he's been assigned a public defender, michele peterson. they'll be representing him. and he's been mirandized and i'm told nel of the information that he gain to interrogators on board the "uss new york cannot be used in a court of law. >> and speaking of the "uss new york, it's been a couple of weeks since he was caught by the delta force commandos, went in, picked him up, brought him back out to the "uss new york. you've been doing amazing reporting on this. anything you gleaned from your sources about what that information might have been that they talked to him about on that
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long steam across the atlantic? >> well, in the initial days, leyland, i heard from sources who were familiar with the interrogations and how they were going that he was giving them a history lesson, a history lesson of ansar al sharia, the terror group he's associated with, alleged to be associated with. so they started off slowly. he was cooperative and did talk. it took them from the time he was picked up june 15th till just early this morning when he was helicoptered off the "uss new york, the "uss new york pulled into the chesapeake. we were told that it was very intentional, that he sailed back from the mediterranean to give the cia and fbi and other interrogators time to talk to him on board that ship to glean intelligence that might be used inside libya to go after some of the other potential co-conspirators. this case is not closed and the justice department says that they are still investigating and they still are attempting to
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bring others to justice for their attack in benghazi. >> and certainly from what we've been able to tell, your reporting, there were many involved not only in the planning of the attack but also in carrying it out. jennifer griffin live from the courthouse in washington, d.c. a not guilty plea from the lone so far suspect arrested in that benghazi terror attack. moving on but staying with news from the middle east, new armed are now launching a major counter offensive to retake the northern city of tikrit from sunni militants belonging to the terror group isis. john huddy is live with the latest on thissen battle from our middle east bureau where it is just now the 11:30 at night. john? >> yeah, and leyland, this is going to stretch well into the overnight hours into early tomorrow morning. that's when actually the fight started in tikrit was at dawn this morning when the alliance launched that counter offense against those isis militants.
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having said that, you mentioned the helicopter gun ships, thanks, also special forces troops are on the ground trying to push the militants back so they don't continue the march towards baghdad. now, having said that, air strikes have been critical in other battles including the battle for control of the badge ji oil refinery north of tikrit. we saw that last week. and also at this point, along with tikrit, you know, they're launching, of course, the fight there, but north of that mosul still remains a major battleground, as well. again, today's fight in tikrit started before dawn and iraqi tishls said the air strikes were targeting the militants attacking troops on the campus of tikrit university. and iraqi ground troops are also getting help from heavy artillery fire. tikrit as we've been reporting has been one of the bloodiest battlegrounds so far. it's where isis sass militants reportedly executed 160 people two weeks ago. so having said that, let's talk
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about the location because this is significant, as well. tikrit's location it sits between the middle of mosul to the north and baghdad to the south. and as i said, mosul remains under isis control. and actually, the iraqi military also launched air strikes against isis there this morning, too. so again, we have two major bats going on at this point that are going to stretch into the overnight hours into tomorrow. leland, so far we don't have a casualty report on either side but we're also getting reports that now battles have flared up south of baghdad, as well and that dozens have been killed there. so a lot of new fights going on along with the ones in tikrit and then mosul to the north. >> john huddy live from our middle east bureau. we'll see how that unfolds over the night and actually whether the iraqi army is stable to hold any of the ground they may gain. john, thank you. reports right now that the epa is going to spend more than
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a million of your dollars on a conference are sparking outrage. the agency's contract is with the renaissance hotel in arlington, virginia. it is for "an environmental justice conference coming up this fall." the epa is booking nearly 200 rooms for 24 days. they could cost between $200 and $400 each. we'll stay on this, as well. a bit of a history lesson for you right now. 100 years ago today, archduke france ferdinand was assassinated that ended up leading to world war i. today countries around the world are remembering the historic event that set off that awful and bloody war known as the great war. dominique dena tally joins us live from los angeles with more. dominick. >> hey there. a century on and it still resonates across the continent, commemorations kicking off in
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sarajevo in bosnia where is where archduke ferdinand was assassinated by a yugoslav. a reminder of how the acts of one man alone can trigger a war and very reminiscent today if you think about it how the arab spring started come to think of it. the grandson of the last austrian emperor carl i explaining the immense loss of life it caused eventually created something positive. >> you cannot see the first world war separate. you have to always see it will together with the second world war because the first one led into the second. and what came out of it was a united europe. >> well, now history buffs visiting austria this summer can now see the car used that day by ferdinand. he was the heir to the hapsburg dynasty. other quite remarkable artifacts have also been recovered making the history feel very real. >> we got the original uniform and we got the original shirt.
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and additionally, we got three of the four pistols that they were using during this killing. >> well, queen elizabeth ii with her husband the duke of edinborough commemorating volunteers who served what became known an the great war. the conflict was the first time the united states backed britain prior to that in history, of course, it had been fighting. the united states sent over 2 million u.s. servicemen to battle the wars there. 50,000 american lives lost alone in the great war. back to you, le loind. >> dominick live in los angeles, thanks. he ever lawmakers are not happy with the answers they are getting over the missing lois lerner e-mails and the irs targeted investigation. so did they vanish or were they destroyed? we're going to try to answer that coming up. plus, a frantic search for information that may lead to an arrest in the brutal murder of a
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19-year-old college student. we'll tell you what it is. [ male announcer ] if you suffer from a dry mouth then you'll know how uncomfortable it can be. [ crickets chirping ] but did you know that the lack of saliva can also lead to tooth decay and bad breath? [ exhales deeply ] [ male announcer ] well there is biotene. specially formulated with moisturizers and lubricants, biotene can provide soothing relief and it helps keep your mouth healthy, too. [ applause ] biotene -- for people who suffer from dry mouth. biotene -- but we're not in the business of naming names. the volkswagen passat is heads above the competition, the fact is, it comes standard with an engine that's been called the benchmark of its class. really, guys, i thought... it also has more rear legroom than other midsize sedans. and the volkswagen passat has a lower starting price than... much better. vo: hurry in and lease the 2014
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music legend bobby womack has passed away. the singer r & b singer suffered from a series of health issues over the past few years. bobby womack was 70 years old. and nasa is planning to launch a flying saucer into earth's atmosphere to test technology that could be used to land on mars. maybe not every ufo is unidentified. they're going to be testing the disk-shaped vehicle and a giant parachute off the coast of hawaii. look for it in the air near you. lawmakers on capitol hill are pushing for answers in the irs targeting scandal. meantime, a trade association for the i.t. industry is questioning whether those e-mails vanished or perhaps something else happened like they were destroyed. she has been on the story from the start. the chief congressional correspondent for the washington examiner joins us now from d.c. susan, start with this. in terms of the way the scandal is brewin on the hill and
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you've seen them happen before, has the scandal gotten to the boiling point or is the water still simmering? >> i think right now we're sort of in a holding pattern. the reason i say that is there was some interesting testimony last week from the commissioner john koskinen who says we are going to try to piece together the missing lerner e-mails based on the recipients. she sent e-mails outside the agency to justice and to other parts of the obama administration. if they can get the recipients' e-mails from lerner, we can learn what she was trying to communicate. i think we may get some of those e-mails. we just learned there's going be a report coming in the next few weeks on the missing e-mails. we may see some of them. that's why i think a lot of this hinges on whether congress can feel satisfied that the irs has done everything it could to reproduce those e-mails. remember every member i talked to on capitol hill keeps saying we don't think we can get to the bottom of this until we know
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what happened to the e-mails or we can see those e-mails and find out if there's any real damning evidence in there that lerner was working with administration higherups or otherwise working to target these conservative groups in a real purposeful fashion. >> speaking of those e-mails, there's a lot of normal folks looking around saying we don't understand this. g mail can save my e-mails for eternity. how is it that the irs can't seem to save theirs. there's a congressman proposing some type of reward if anybody can figure this out. is that gaining any traction? >> well, i this i what it's doing, leland, is getting the public tuned into this. you ask anyone on the street about this. the first thing they'll say is why wasn't it saved on her handheld device? why wasn't it saved in an outside server? even basic technology experts will tell you that there's almost no way that those e-mails can be gone forever. i know the irs says they had antiquated technology. that may be true but how
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antiquated are we talking? the 1970s? the key here though is that the e-mails that are missing, leland, went to outside the irs. and any e-mail that goes outside the irs gets saved on an independent server. where is that server? that wasn't recycled. that's why i think you see the irs now scrambling to try to reproduce these. the picture i'm getting from them is they realize congress is not going to let up on this and the public doesn't buy it. those two things combined i think will produce at least some of the e-mails. whether it's enough to satisfy congress is the outstanding question here. >> we only have about 30 seconds. i did want to get to this. the news of the e-mail involving senator grassley this week coming out, has that energized congress and made a lot of folks who perhaps weren't that interested in the scandal suddenly pay more attention or is it business as usual on the hill? >> you know who it's energized is the senate democrats and republicans. that's where the real problem is
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for the irs. you have a bipartisan investigation in the senate. in the house it's just the republicans. over in the senate, you've got the finance committee, the democrat and republican on that committee looking into this. they're both very concerned about it. that's how you know, that gives it much more credibility and takes away the argument that this is simply a partisan issue. >> that could definitely change things. susan from the washington examiner, thanks for joining us. we appreciate it. nice to see you on saturday. >> you bet. >> coming up, more developments on benghazi today as a key suspect in the attacks pleads not guilty. so the will there finally be justice? we're going to go in-depth with an attorney to talk about it coming up. geico's been helping people save money for over 75 years.
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back to benghazi and the investigation as the search for justice continues. a key suspect right now is in federal custody. khattala pled not guilty in u.s. district court in washington just about an hour and a half ago for his alleged role in the 2012 attack that killed chris stevens and three other americans. so what is next for khattala now that he is a member or part of the u.s. justice system? joining us to talk about that, former jag attorney, philip holloway. i want to start with, this there has been a lot of discussion about this, was flying him off the navy ship this morning the right move or should they have kept him at sea, kept questioning him, or taken that ship down to gitmo and let him be there for a little while? >> i think the answer to that question is ultimately going to have to be decided by history. the obama administration made it perfectly clear that they intend to put no one else in gitmo, in fact, the trend has been that everybody is trying to be cycled out of gitmo.
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i can tell you this, going forward, he's going to be treated just like any other criminal justice defendant moving through the criminal justice process and the courts are going to have to decide what due process looks like for people like him when they're not american citizens, when they're captured overseas on foreign soil. they are interrogated by military and civilian authorities and sort of slowly floated to the united states to appear before a magistrate, which typically is supposed to be done fairly quickly. >> i want to get back to this issue of him being floated over here. jennifer griffin did great reporting and she was talking earlier about how they really said that on the uss new york as he was coming over, he was giving them a history lesson, talking about it. can you give us a sense for those of white house have not been on a navy ship, you've been on a lot of them -- give us a sense of kind of conditions he was being held under, the kind of idea. was he in a jail cell? locked in a state room? what happens on those ships? >> he's probably held in something like a brig, which is
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really a barren cell used for any other person who might be in custody in the military. could be a sailor, for example, who is charged with some criminal offense. i can tell you, they're not very pleasant or nice conditions. i don't know, i'm sure he wasn't mistreated or anything like that. but he certainly did not enjoy the last two weeks at sea, i can promise you that. >> all right. give me a sense look forward here in terms of the federal court proceeding, it seems as though bailiff is unlikely. what does it tell you about the fact that we just saw the one charge here today and not a much longer ranging indictment read out in federal court? it seems like the federal prosecutor is playing his cards very close when there is a lot on the table. >> absolutely right. the federal prosecutor has the option at their discretion to increase or decrease these charges using the federal grand jury at pretty much any point in time within the statute of limitation. he's facing murder charges. i think that's the way this is
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going because you did have the deaths of several americans out there and they each carry possibly life sentences. so i think what we're seeing right now is just the very tip of the iceberg. >> can we read anything into that decision of not charging them with never that maybe they're looking to make a deal with him, now that he's been mirandaized, willing to give up more information about folking there? >> i think it's a distinct possibility. we've seen it before in the past where terror suspects were brought in to federal court in new york or virginia and then wound up cutting deals. the last thing that the united states wants is to have a trial and lose because that would be extremely embarrassing not only here at home, but on the world stage. if they have all these statements that he gave while he was in custody the last two weeks and they're not able to use those because they were premiranda, for example, and they don't have a lot of other independent evidence to convict him, i think the last thing that they want to do is risk a potential acquittal.
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>> as you're looking at this case going forward, do you see it more playing out in federal court or not? >> yes, it will play out in federal court. that's where it is now. it's not going anywhere else. he's not going to be removed and go down to gitmo or anywhere else and he's not going to be simply leased. it will work through the federal court system, just like anybody else. we know this isn't just anybody else because any time you take navy captain and curb them -- >> all right. that's for sure. we'll see how it plays out. thanks for your insight. that does it for me. more news in one hour. i'll be back with patty ann brown. "the five" is coming up next legs, for crossing. feet...splashing. better things than the joint pain and swelling of moderate to severe rheumatoid arthritis. if you're trying to ma, now may be time to ask about xeljanz.
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