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tv   The Story With Martha Mac Callum  FOX News  December 7, 2021 12:00pm-1:00pm PST

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this. overall, your thoughts. we have 10 seconds. i'm sorry, general. >> putin has been concerned about having a buffer from eastern european states to protect russia. that has given him a concern now. u.s. and nato power is on his border that has always given him concern. >> sandra: thanks, general. i'm sandra smith. thanks for joining us. >> john: i'm john roberts. here's martha. >> martha: good afternoon. i'm martha maccallum in new york. breaking right now on the story, we're about to get the white house briefing in moments. should have very interesting back and forth and questions from that briefing room when jen psaki steps to the podium. both sides are putting out what they say happened in the conversation. we're going to see what the president promised and what vladimir putin wanted from our president. so the question -- the bottom
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line here is can anything happen in this conversation with our president biden lead to vladimir putin feeling as if he cannot invade ukraine? did anything here serve as a catalyst that would make him concerned about making that move that the ramifications would be too great if he made that move? what would the response be as you move the chess pieces around the board. so what leverage did president biden walk into that room with at this point? here's a little glimpse of the top of the conversation. this was provided by russian state tv. american reporters were not allowed in but kremlin reporters were. >> good to see you again. unfortunately last time we didn't get to see each other at the g-20. i hope next time we meet we do it in person. >> martha: so the white house
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says the president told putin the united states and its allies would respond with strong economic and other measures. this is not the only test that president biden is facing on the world stage right now. things are getting tense in a number of places. china has been flying war planes near taiwan. iran is ramping up their nuclear program despite everybody's request they don't do so. that is a serious concern as well. the united states is talking about rejoining the nuclear deal but we haven't gotten anywhere on the front. trey yingst watching this as he reports live from jerusalem. hi, trey. >> martha, good afternoon. the entire world was waiting to see about this call with joe biden and president putin. we're getting a statement from the kremlin indicating that president putin requested president biden ensure that there would be no further nato
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expansion east and there's no offensive strike systems deployed near russia. getting more context in to the conversation. the call lasted over two hours. according to the white house read-out, president biden voiced deep concern over recent russian troop movement near ukraine. the statement adds that president biden made clear russia would be dealt economic and other responses if military escalation takes place. minutes in to the call, the russians were trying to spin in their direction. you'll hear more about it now. >> martha: here's jake sullivan taking the podium. let's listen in. >> good to see everybody here today. as you know, president biden held a secure video call with president putin. the called covered a range of issues. the main topic was ukraine. president biden was direct and straightforward with president putin as he always is. he reiterated america's support for ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity.
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he told president putin that if russia invades ukraine, the united states would respond with strong economic measures. we would provide additional defensive material for the ukrainians above and beyond what we already have. and we will fortified or allies with additional capabilities in response to such an escalation. he told president putin there's another option. deescalation and diplomacy. the united states and our allies would engage in a discussion that covers larger strategic issues including our strategic concerns with russia and russia's strategic concerns. we managed to do this at the height of the cold war and we developed mechanisms to increase transparency. we have done this in this post cold war era through the nato-russia council and other mechanisms. there's no reason we can't do that going forward provided that we're operating in a context of deescalation rather than
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escalation. the united states is premared to support efforts to advance the minsk agreement. this could include a cease fire an confidence building measure that helps drive the process forward. the discussion was district and straightforward. there was a lot of give and take. there's no finger wagging but the president was crystal clear about where the united states stands on all of these issues. we believe from the beginning of this administration that there's no substitute for direct dialogue between leaders. that is true in spades when it comes to the u.s.-russia relationship. so president biden welcomed the opportunity to engage clearly and directly with president putin. as president biden said after his meeting in geneva in june with president putin, where we have differences, i want president putin to understand why i say what i say and why i do what i do and how we'll respond to specific kinds of
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actions that harm america's interests and indeed harm our allies interests. that's exactly what he did today. after the call, he spoke with the leaders of france, germany, italy and the u.k. to debrief them on the call and to consult on the way forward. our team is debriefing the embassies of key indopacific allies. the president will be speaking with both houses of congress and talking about ways in which the administration and the congress can work together on a bipartisan basis to stand up for american interests and values and stand behind our friends and partners. president biden will be speaking with president zelenski thursday. the president and his european colleagues agreed that our teams will work together to ensure
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that our engagement with russia going forward involves and is closely coordinated with european allies and partners so that we are all on the same page. there's a lot of work to do in the days ahead. as we pursue diplomatic channels, we will prepare for all contingencies just as we have been doing for weeks now, including through the preparation of specific responses to russian escalation should they be required. specific, robust, clear responses should they be required. that's where things stand as we speak and with that, i'd be happy to take your questions. yes. >> could you elaborate what you said about fortifying allies on the eastern flank? is sending u.s. troops an option? >> in the event there's an escalation, our partners on the eastern front, romania, poland, other countries will be
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increasingly concerned about the security and territorial integrity of their countries. they will be seeking, we expect, additional capabilities and potentially additional deployments and the united states will be looking to respond positively in the event there's a further incursion in to ukraine. >> is that something the american public should be bracing for, seeing american troops in that ground in the coming weeks and months if vladimir putin goes through with this? >> i don't know if i would say bracing for since we currently have rotational deployments in the baltics. we conduct exercises in poland and romania. the presence of american service members in this country is not something new. the question is not about whether or not the united states is going to send american service members to the territory of our nato allies. we do that as a matter of course. the question is what additional capabilities can we provide to
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ensure that they feel strong and confident in their own territorial integrity. it's the additional capabilities on the table in those countries should russia move in ukraine in a more decisive way. >> thanks. in the days leading up to this call, the white house and administration officials said that their assessment is that putin had not made a decision over whether to invade ukraine. he wanted clarity. >> we still don't believe that president putin made a decision. what president biden did today is lay out very clearly the consequences if he chooses to move. he also laid out an alternative path, a path that is fundamentally in keeping with the basic principles. we will see in the days ahead through actions, not words, what course of action russia chooses to take.
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>> in your statement of the call, you said president biden said the united states is ready to take strong economic measures and other actions if needed. what are the other measures? >> i just spelled them out in my opening remarks. the supply and provision of additional material as well as the additional deployment of assets and capabilities to nato members in the event that there's a further incursion. >> what are the strong economic measures and how are they different from the ones that you put on russia in 2014 which didn't deter russia from taking crimea? why do you think they'll work better this time? >> i will look you in the eye and president biden told president putin things we didn't do in 2014 we are prepared to do now. now, in terms of the specifics, we would prefer to communicate that to the russians to not negotiate in public, to not
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telegraph our punches but we're laying out in some detail the types of measures. we are also coordinating with our european allies on that at a level of deep specificity. we reach out to the state department, the national security council in daily contact with brussels to work through the package of measures. it's not profitable for us to lay out the specifics of it standing out here today. >> did president putin ask for president bye-bye -- president biden to not allow ukraine to join nato and did he make concessions such as a reduced u.s. presence or commitment on nato membership? >> i'm not going to characterize president putin's side of the conversation or go into details what they discussed. they need to have that space to be able to have robust exchange.
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he made no concessions. he stands by the proposition that countries should choose who associate with who they associate with. >> and how can supplies be delivered? >> we have a onlining pipeline that delivers defensive assistance to ukraine. there was a delivery of defensive assistance just recently. that will continue. so it really depends on the type or form. but this should not be thought hoff as a circumstance in which you completely turn off the dial or turn on the dial. there is an ongoing pipeline, whether that pipeline needs additional supplements as we go forward will depend on how circumstances evolve. >> thanks so much. you have said that the administration will take action if russia does escalate. satellite images show hundreds of russian troops are amassing
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on the border with ukraine. why wait to take action? >> our view is the fundamental object of the policy of the united states is pursuing in lock step with our european allies is to deter a russian military invasion of further territory of ukraine. the measures we have put on the table are designed to show the russian government that should it choose to engage in such an invasion, there will be those consequences. that for us is a clear and decisive lay-down and we also believe there should be an alternative pathway by which we can make progress on diplomacy and by which we can address nato and american security concerns and russian security concerns through a larger mechanism
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consistent with the way we've operating. >> some republicans are accusing president biden for being too weak. they cited nord stream 2 and the withdrawal of afghanistan which was widely criticized. how do you respond to that point? >> i make three points. the first is that vladimir putin standing behind then president mededev, the calculation of russian leaders, there's not good evidence to support that. when it comes to nord stream 2, the fact is that gas is not currently flowing through the nord stream 2 pipeline, which means that it's not operating which means it's not leverage for putin.
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indeed, it's leverage for the west. if putin wants to see the gas flow through, he might not invade. the president has shown the past eight months that he will do what he says he will do in response to russian action. president putin can count on that he said there would be costs for solar wands and others. he's not doing this to saber rattle, he's not doing to make threats. he's doing it to be clear and direct with both the russians and with our european allies about the best way forward. we think this stands the best chance alongside a pathway to deescalate, to avert a potential crisis with respect to an invasion of the ukraine.
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>> there's been suggestions of starting talks be. did president putin agree to the talks? >> i'm not going to characterize what president putin said. i will say that formal agreements or formal treaties were not on the table in the conversation today. the straightforward notion that the united states flanked by our european allies and partners somewhat would be prepared to talk to russia about strategic issues in the theater is on the table and we're prepared to do this as we've been prepared to do that throughout the cold war and post cold war era. what the right mechanism is and what comes of that, that is all to be worked out as we see how things proceed in the coming days. >> why hasn't the u.s. given additional materials to the
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ukraine yet? >> as i pointed out in response to an earlier question, we're continuing to deliver assistance to ukraine. we have done so just in the past few days. >> the kremlin read-out says president putin proposes that president biden lift all restrictions on diplomatic missions is. that something that the president is open to? >> president biden is open to creating functioning diplomatic missions in both countries. he didn't make any specific commitments with respect to the best pathway to do that. president biden and president putin should direct their teams to figure out how we ensure the embassy platform in moscow can operate effectively. >> just to follow up on nord stream. have you had any meetings with the incoming german government on this issue? are you urging the new incoming
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government to threaten to pull support for this pipeline if there is an encouragement to the ukraine? >> we've had intensive discussions with the outgoing and incoming german government in nord stream 2 in the context of an invasion. it is an object of great priority for the biden administration. >> >> so the summit is being watched by a number of regions including xi jinping. some people have described a nightmare scenario where president putin invading ukraine and president xi unifies to reunify with taiwan. is the united states prepared for that? >> the united states will take every action we can take about the point of view of deterrence and diplomacy to make sure the
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taiwan scenario never happens and to try to avert the invasion and deter the invasion in to ukraine that is the object of our policy right now. those are the steps we're taking. that's what president biden is doing and the messages he's sending to president putin and with respect to taiwan, the sum total of the efforts we have undertaken over the last eight months in the indopacific have also all been geared towards avoiding any kind of scenario where china chooses -- >> is there any promise on the russian side to use leverage to change iran on its position? >> the president and president putin had a good discussion on the iran issue. it was productive. russia and the united states worked well-together in tense circumstances in the 2014-15 period to produce the joint comprehensive plan of action.
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>> we did ukrainian officials first deny there was a true build-up other than when washington put out the information and then changed their tune? >> i'm not going to characterize the decision-making of the ukrainian government other than to say we're in daily contact with senior officials. i'm in nearly daily contact with my counterpart and we believe that we're seeing a common threat picture here. our message to our friends in the ukrainian government is that the united states supports the minsk process. >> is the world safer today after that conversation between the two leaders or less safe? then i have a follow up to your
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answer. >> all i will say is that the ultimate metric for whether the world is safer or not is facts on the ground and actions taken in this case by russia. let's see. we're prepared to deal with any contingency at the outset and i'm not going to make predictions or characterizations. i'm only going to say that president biden will continue to do the necessary prudent planning for a variety of different pathways that can unfold. >> [question inaudible] are you going to address the proxy of iran this time on the table? >> i make three points to that. since donald trump made the
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decision to pull the united states out of the iran deal, hezbollah has continued to menace lebanon and the region. iran's proxies in iraq and yemen have moved forward. so not being in the nuclear deal has hardly been a solution. second, nothing about the nuclear deal stops the united states' capacity to deal with those problemsties. we're prepared to do so. in fact, in response to attacks on american forces in iraq, the united states has twice under president biden taken action, direct military action in response to those proxies in addition to undertaking sanctions. third, ultimately an iran with a nuclear why upon is going to be a greater menace in partnerships with its proxies than an iran without one. it's our determination to ensure that they never get a nuclear weapon. >> the iranians announced that they're back in negotiations.
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the administration criticized them last week and said they're not serious. what makes you think that apart from hope that they are serious this time and how much of time are you willing to do it? second, you negotiate with allies -- [inaudible]. >> i'll put this quite simply. the more iran demonstrates a lack of seriousness, the more unity there is along the p-5 plus one and the more they will be exposed as the isolated party in this negotiation. so really the ball is in iran's court whether they want to show up and demonstrate if they're serious or not. >> looking forward to the meeting with president zelinski
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later this week, is there a way to end this peacefully? >> as i mentioned this beautiful, we're in contact with senior levels of the ukrainian government. secretary blinken spoke with president zelinski yesterday. they have come forward with constructive ideas for how to move the diplomacy forward. those are steps they're taking and asking the united states to support them in trying to get towards a cease fire and ultimately get down the track of diplomatic resolution. we believe that that is good and positive and i believe that president biden and president zelinski will discuss that pathway -- >> can i ask you about nord stream 2? you said putin should not risk the pipeline. have you made clear to allies
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that you will in fact sanction the remaining entities in that project if there's an invasion and have you received any assurances from germany whenprime minister merkel was here, there was discussion what to do if russia weaponized the gas supplies, that nothing came of that even though there was some pretty big saber rattling but the russians in recent months. have you now received assurances from germany that they won't proceed with that? >> in response to an earlier question, i said i wasn't going to get into the specific sanctions measures that we intend to impose. we'll communicate those directly to our russian counter parts and working through them detail by detail with our european counterparts. the subject of the future of nord stream 2 in the context of an invasion by ukraine by russia in the coming weeks is a pop tick of utmost priority. it has been discussed
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thoroughly. i'll leave it at that today. >> how can nations like the united states and russia affect other countries? and my second question is how do you summarize this meeting? was it productive? was it good? >> it was a useful meeting. it was useful in the sense that it allowed president biden to lay out in clear and direct terms where the united states stands on this issue and to do so having coordinated closely with his allies and partners beforehand and to talk about a potential way forward. now, on the question of african partners, this is true the world over. the attempt to change the territories of another country by force should be vigorously opposed by every country in the world. >> one more question. >> what was putin's demeanor over the course of the two hours? did he signal any willingness to
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back down? >> i just make it a practice not to characterize the other side's position. he can speak for himself. i'd say that his demeanor like president biden's demeanor was district and straightforward. again, as i said in my opening remarks, this was a real discussion. it was give and take. it was not speeches. it was back and forth. president putin was deeply engaged. i'm going to leave it at that in terms of trying to characterize where he is. all i can tell you is there is a task coming out of that meeting by the presidents to the teams to start talking about how we might think about the diplomacy. the president made clear that diplomacy has to con in deescalation rather than escalation and we'll see who unfolds. thank you, guys. >> okay. thank you, jake. welcome back any time.
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i can speak for the group. a couple of items for all of you at the top. i want to just preview tomorrow. the president will be headed to kansas city, missouri where he will continue highlighting how the bipartisan infrastructure law delivers for missourians by rebuilding roads and bridges. upgrading public transit, replacing water infrastructure and good union jobs. it's part of the president's tour that demonstrates how the president is following through on his promise to forge bipartisan consensus and improve our democracy can deliver big wins for the american people. he will there be with governor parsons and a number of other state and local elected officials. he will be visiting the kansas city area transportation authority and discuss how this historic investment in the infrastructure law will provide more than $670 million -- >> martha: we're going to keep a
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close eye on the q&a with jen psaki. if that gets interesting and relevant, we'll take you back there. i want to bring in for immediate reaction marc thiessen, former speechwriter for george w. bush. an american enterprise scholar and a fox news contributor. republican congressman michael waltz from florida joining us and congressman, let me start with you. we've been watching and listening to this intently trying to see what went on in this meeting. what is your take-away? >> martha, i think president biden is slipping in to becoming a modern day neville chamberlain. this appeasement approach won't work with vladimir putin. what we're continuing to see is a theme out of the white house, our actions that we will take after russia invades ukraine if russia invades ukraine. it's not a matter of if and how
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far he goes and the actions we need to see is what we're going to do right now. sanctions in place now. military equipment, moving to help our ukrainian allies like more javelin missiles and the stingers now. we have to begin seriously raising the cost for putin and turning the ukraine into a porcupine and just one other thing. jake sullivan is being completely disingenuous when he says this has nothing to do with afghanistan and nothing to do with nord stream 2. the pipeline is built. all it takes is the new german government to certify it. that's a paperwork drill. what putin knows in the middle of winter is he will starve ukraine and starve eastern europe and hold germany hostage with their energy supply. finally with the sanctions, you have to have those in euros and in dollars. putin knows he can withstand
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u.n. sanctions if he has a fractured europe and nord stream 2 will fracture europe and nato. so like so many policy blunders, this is one of their own making. and we're on the verge of the largest land acquisition since world war ii. >> martha: the point whether the sanctions come now based on the build-up that we're seeing is really important. i thought it was interesting how much jake sullivan tried to avoid using the phrase red line. but basically he said this is the point at which we will take action. our -- a further actual invasion. so there's already russia presence in ukraine. what you have this ukraine is a divided country. most of the country wants freedom, wants to be more western leaning.
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putin doesn't want that to happen. he lost the former grave soviet union that he watched dissolve. he wants to put that back together. he sees this western-leaning ukraine. this is what we've witnessed over all of the past presidents. this battle over whether or not ukraine can be part of nato. we would have to defend it. so this is a line we've been walking. you remember the conversations with president trump and zelinski and president obama about oh, after the election, we'll have more flexibility. we won't be aiming the missiles in your direction. so mark, you know, inform me on what does this mean. for folks at home, what has the white house signals to russia based on what you see from the kremlin's side of the read-out and what we just heard from jake sullivan. >> they're signals weakness. mike is 100% right. we should be arming the ukraine
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to the teeth now to deter russia. what they just said, president buy ten told putin if you invade, we will increase u.s. military assistance including javelin missiles and all sorts of stuff. the counter of that, if you don't invade, we won't do that. so vladimir putin could have just win then because he precipitated a crisis, got the u.s. to agree to a teal that he doesn't invade. that's a victory for putin. he's playing biden. then you mentioned red line. why are we in this mess? he referred to 2014 when russia annexed crimea? what precipitated that? president biden drew a red line in syria and told the syrian regime if you use chemical weapons, we'll take military action and didn't enforce it. a few months later, vladimir putin innovated ukraine and seized crimea. what precipitated this?
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the disastrous withdrawal from afghanistan which projected weakness. nobody could look at afghanistan and say this a sign of strength that america is determine to advance their interests. so putin look at the weakness of our withdrawal, look at biden refusing to lift the sanctions on nord stream 2 that donald trump put in place and he senses weakness. weakness is provocative. weakness causes your adversaries to test your resolve and miss calculate. it's dangerous when you project weakness in the world. >> martha: oil and gas is the main commodity. they wanted this nord stream 2 pipeline which will go to germany. president trump didn't want that. he knew would be empowering to putin and empowering to russia. now it's all done but the turning on. at this point, jake sullivan suggests oh, we can turn that
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off. the fact that we allowed the process to move it as far as it is not a big deal. it's leverage for us. is it leverage? >> at the end of the day, martha, this white house is bringing talking points to a gun fight. a lot of this is because of their just -- just asinine energy policy. talk to larry kudlow. we had the pieces in place to export american glass, which is cleaner gas on lng ships to the ukraine to supply eastern europe. that would have reduced the strangle hold that russia has on ukraine. once they get that -- once that pipeline, they flip the switch on it, all of western europe is in hostage to the whims of
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putin. so they can dominate our allies in eastern europe and hold our allies in western europe. why does this matter to the american people? iran is watching as they race to a nuke. china is watching. north korea is watching. the leading think tanks in moscow have said afghanistan absolutely mattered. >> martha: stand by. we want to go back to the white house briefing, this is interesting. >> focus on our objectives. the president laid them out in those calls yesterday and in a follow up call again today and we'll let them speak for themselves. >> you just made clear the president spoke to putin. what if he doesn't heed the warnings? what is the time frame? >> for when -- >> how long do you think that would take? what is he looking at? the next several days or weeks? >> i'm not going to give you an assessment of that. that's up to president putin. our objective is to prevent
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russia and putin from invading ukraine. we want them to deescalate. that was the clear bottom line. >> one last question. is the president going to attend the funeral for bob dole? >> he of course considered former senator bob dole a friend, somebody that he admired greatly. i'll let them announce any specifics of the plans for the funeral. >> martha: gentlemen, i want to go back on this one more time with you, this is what was coming out from the kremlin's side. that vladimir putin stressed the responsibility should not be shifted on to the shoulders of russia since it is nato that is making dangerous attempts to conquer ukrainian territory and building up the military at the border. russia are looking at reliable fixed guarantees including the expansion of nato and deployment of strike systems. in other words, get out of our back yard our we're going to keep moving westward.
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congressman waltz? >> you know, i was just out of the reagan library this past weekend. under ronald reagan, we don't have moscow dictating the terms for what the united states and nato does. maybe under biden that will happen. i pray it doesn't. this is a win-win for putin. he facilitates a crisis and demands legal guarantees what nato will and won't do. or he invades and creates a slippery slope. after ukraine will be our allies in poland, hungary, romania and certainly in the baltic states. again, meanwhile can hold western europe hostage with the nord stream 2 pipeline here. he playing chess here and i'm afraid we're playing checkers. >> martha: the big question is what if, what if he begins to invade. the sanctions come on and they don't rattle them too much. what are we prepared to do?
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ukraine is not a member of nato, which is painfully apparent to them. what would we do? >> we can follow a model of what president george w. bush did when russia threatened georgia. jake sullivan mentioned that. we had troops in afghanistan and they innovated georgia. we deterred them from the full invasion of georgia. one of the things president did, hi sent military cargo flights in to georgia's capitol, which put american boots on the ground, not in a combat role but in a cargo delivery role, which was a deterrent to russia marching on. we should be arming ukraine now to deter russian intervention, not using the aid as a carrot for vladimir putin to not invade and draw down. we should be giving them no guarantees whatsoever that ukraine will not be a member of
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nato because that would be a victory. we don't want to -- we want the teach president putin and north korea and china and other countries and iran if you precipitate a crisis, you can get stuff out of the united states. vladimir putin has to walk away with nothing or else another projection of weakness on the part of the president. >> it matter what's we arm them with. the ukrainians have been specifically asking for air defense systems to deal with the russian air force around importantly to deal with anti-ship assets as well. those i think would raise the cost significantly for putin, may cause him to think twice. if we're -- if the intelligence estimates are this may happen in the next four to eight weeks, they have to send that stuff right now or it won't get there in time. >> martha: we're going to dip back in. stay with us. >> involving nord stream two if russia is to move forward. does the administration have any
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regrets at this point about not -- about waving sanctions against nord stream 2 this spring? >> well, i would first note that -- jake broadly referenced this. in july there was a joint statement of the united states and germany on support for ukraine energy security and our climate goals. what it conveyed in there is that -- made in the joint statement, the action taken if russia attempts to use energy as a weapon or commit further aggressive acts against ukraine. invading ukraine would be an aggressive act. part of these discussions are what the contingency planning would look like if they would take that step. that is a lesson -- and this question was asked yes and today, what are the lessons you learned from 2014. what you can look at for people that covered this back then is that there's an enormous amount of preparation, contingency planning, tracking of social media and the use hoff
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disinformation tools. a lot of that is done because we learned lessons in 2014 leading up to it. what is important to also note is there's a lot of members on the hill -- not a lot, some, that are vocal that are conveying that nord stream 2 is the answer here. the point that jake was making or additional steps on nord stream 2, that that would not be an effectively be a deterrent. so yes, germany in our joint statement made these commitments. there's a range of economic tools and options that we have, our european partners have should they decide to invade. obviously our preference is that we don't get to that point. >> and you brought up the members on the hill that talk about nord stream 2. jake's july statement. these members say that russia has taken action, using gas as a
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geo political weapon. they point to coercing an manipulating countries in europe over the summer. taking advantage of the energy crisis, for instance a couple months ago. and biden and merkel promised sanctions if those events were to transpire. does the white house believe what we've seen till now is not russia using gas as a geo political weapon? >> i think what we're talking about here and trying to achieve here is a deterrence of actions that would be detrimental and, of course, hurt the territorial sovereignty and integrity of ukraine. what i was referencing is the fact that there's some that are suggesting that this would deter. our assessment is it would not. again, we've been having conversations with a range of partners including our important partners in germany. yes, there's a reference as i
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referenced in july to this joint statement. again, i would really -- i don't have anything new or nord stream 2. it's important to understand what is a deterrent and what is not. >> another topic. mayor lori lightfoot says stores are not putting security officers and working cameras and stealing high end bags. alexandria ocasio-cortez said early they are week that she doubted allegations of organized retail theft. she believed it was a walgreen's in california that cited it. does the president believe this is happening and should it be on the stores that take actions to prevent it? >> we don't agree. our actions and the work that we have had in working with the justice department, the fbi and federal law enforcement showed that we take -- we have seen some of these extremely
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disturbing videos showing retail theft and both major retailers and governor newsome has identified this is a serious concern. we agree. that's why we have sent additional support from the fbi providing additional assistance. it's one of the reasons why we have also been -- the president and members of our administration have been long-time advocates for supporting and funding the cops program, the president proposed $300 million in additional assistance from his budget from what it was last year and provided money to get provided financial assistance to hire more police officers through the cops program that the president has championed in places like san francisco and additional 20 officers in los angeles. so i think his record speaks for itself on this. we're going to continue to advocate for supporting programs like the cops program and ensuring that our law enforcement are good partners as we're working to address the
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retail thefts. kristin? >> martha: all right. we're going to step out for a second here. a lot of breaking news there. we're going to take you to the crime story in chicago actually after this. stay with us. r a1c with once-weekly ozempic® can help you get back in it. oh, oh, oh, ozempic®! my zone... lowering my a1c, cv risk, and losing some weight... now, back to the game! ozempic® is proven to lower a1c. most people who took ozempic® reached an a1c under 7 and maintained it. and you may lose weight. adults lost on average up to 12 pounds. in adults also with known heart disease, ozempic® lowers the risk of major cardiovascular events such as heart attack, stroke, or death. ozempic® helped me get back in my type 2 diabetes zone. ozempic® isn't for people with type 1 diabetes.
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>> martha: jussie smollett on the stand for a second day today. this time he was facing tough questions from the cross examination part of this process, which is obviously a risk when you decide to go up and defend yourself on the stand. so you have to get questions from the other side as well. that's what's going on. allegations here. the charges are that he staged a hate crime in january of 2019. matt finn following this since the beginning for us. he's in chicago where court wrapped for the day. hi, matt. >> hi, martha. the defense and prosecution rest. the case is scheduled to go into closing arguments tomorrow. and this case really boils down to who do you want to believe?
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the chicago police department and the osundairo brothers. i saw jussie smollett how he felt and he put his fist in the area. chicago police say that they put more than 24 officers on this case spending thousands of man hours and they concluded it was a hoax. the osundairo brothers said they smollett wanted the fake hate crime to be caught on a surveillance camera so video should be shared with the world. he wanted attention. the past two days, jussie smollett testified there was no hoax. he was wealthy and famous and didn't need more money and fame. jake sullivan testified he has a bruise on one of hi eyes as a result of the alleged attack. the northwestern doctor here in chicago testified that smollett had no injuries. the special prosecutor asked him
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how he looked on the gma interview after the beat down. he looked good. smollett said he had good hair hollywood and lighting. he said the police changed his words in some of their transcripts. police testified that jussie smollett referred to the osundairo brothers black as sin. he said he would never say those words because his mother is a very dark skinned woman. the jury could begin deliberating tomorrow. >> martha: thanks, matt. let's bring in jonathan turley, george washington university attorney and raymond lopez calling on mayor lightfoot to do more on the crime crisis in chicago. more than 1,000 homicides this year. let me go to jonathan turley with your thoughts on all of this as you look at the cross
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examination and what has come out from that. how do you think this is going? >> what came out today really does prove this is really what is called a jury nullification strategy. i don't think smollett or his lawyers think the jury will disbelieve all the evidence, all the eye witness testimony and accept this as applausable case that he's putting forward. what they're hoping for is one jury to vote on a nullification vote. saying i'm going with the person over the evidence. you can't say that but he pretty darn close. he kept on saying things to the jury that i'm a black man in america. i'm afraid of the police. he was trying to really sort of ramp up this contradiction between -- or this conflict between him and the police. it was so breathtakingly i'm plausible that every person involved in this is involved in
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a conspiracy to get him. all you have left is a jury nullification strategy. >> martha: very interesting. there were dozens of officers that took his statement and the investigation began and dozens of police officers say they believed this never happened. at least not the way he laid it out. we'll see what the jury thinks. that's the bottom line here obviously. i want to play for both of you as ardent chicagoans, this is from mayor lightfoot. it has to do with the amount of crime in the city of chicago which has been escalating and really dangerous ways. she said with regard to these smash and grab robberies, the onus needs to be on the store to take care of their places. watch this. >> some of the retailers downtown in michigan avenue, i'm disappointed that they're not doing more to take safety and make it a priority. for example, we still have retailers that won't institute
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plans like having security officers in the store, making sure that they have cameras that are actually operational. >> martha: alderman lopez, what do you think? >> that is victim shaming at its finest. would mayor lightfoot blame a rape victim for not defending themselves? to blame a store because they're being looted in an organized fashion every weekend is absolutely ridiculous. if you look at how these are related with the smollett case, the justice system in chicago is a joke. criminals know that they can get away with murder on the streets. the connected know that they can use it to their advantage. law abiding citizens and the victims of the violence has nowhere to turn at this point. >> martha: lori lightfoot blaming the retailers is shocking when you look at the pressure that these retailers
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have been under and they're trying to stay open after a horrific year and now they have to deal with these enormous organized smash and grab attacks on them. >> it's like blaming slow moving game for poachers. the problem is that people are coming to the stores in an organized way to steal things. it's her job to keep the city safe. i watch the news every night and my heart breaks and chicago. i love that city. i'm a native chicagoan. i watched as there was a virtual riot in millennium park where i've taken my kids, lots of families taken kids, this is the most essential thing for the mayor in terms of responsibility is to protect the citizens from crime. mayor lightfoot finds that everybody else is to blame but herself. >> martha: alderman lopez, this is from the "wall street journal" editorial board on mayor lightfoot and the mandates and all of the impact that we've
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seen. roughly 80% of the victims are african americans, which is a bracing reminder who pays the highest price when crimes goes unchecked. in these circumstances, no mayor should be imposing health mandates that might reduce the number of police on the streets. your thoughts open that, sir. >> we know that in many of our communities, particularly african american communities innocent people are being targeted every day but those that know that they can game the judicial system. the only thing keeping our society remotely together are the brave men and women who put their lives on the line every day. when she failed to work in good faith with our police officers, she endangered the officers and willingfully endangered the communities that she claims to care about. the black and brown communities where violence is at its highest.
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it's on her, the blood in those communities for choosing politics and her narrative over keeping people safe. >> it seems that this is the narrative that we've seen. we heard it at the white house. this is covid to blame. it's not an actual rise in crime and has nothing to do with the change in the law or they defeat law enforcement across this country. >> yeah, i call it the lokia effect. norris would blame the god lokia for everything that went wrong. the pandemic replaced that. rise in crime is pandemic. supply and demapped, pandemic. some have relevant and some don't. doesn't have much relevance in crime. criminal actors are rationale actors. they make a decision whether they can get away with a crime. they believe that the detection or prosecution in chicago is relatively low and the sentences
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that they would receive is low. that is bad for deterrence. >> martha: thanks nor being with us. before we go, eight years ago, pearl harbor was attacked. some survivors in hawaii right now and marking the myment that began the u.s. entry to world war ii. william la jeunesse is doing great coverage with the veterans. your thoughts in the last minute here. >> well, martha, they're fighting a different enemy today. age. half of these guys got bless them were in wheelchairs, you know? but they were among friends. all the spirits of those that remain here, the people that they lost. pearl harbor, not just defines a generation by american resolve. we came back from a stunning defeat. within six months with bombed
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tokyo and decimated the japanese navy at midway. so 32 pearl harbor survivors still to commemorate that battle 80 years ago today. martha? >> martha: saw a few old friends of mine there with you. thanks for being there. we all remember this very important anniversary 80 years since pearl harbor. that's "the story" today. see you back here tomorrow. >> the president made clear throughout that diplomacy has to come. we'll see. >> neil: we're watching and waiting. the president and president putin holding a video call as russia building troops. the white house warning of a strong response if putin invades ukraine. but what will that response be? the president holding calls is u.s. allies including

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