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tv   The Cycle  MSNBC  January 9, 2015 12:00pm-1:01pm PST

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wednesday's attack at charlie hebdo. both brothers dead killed in the standoff at a printing shop. said went to yemen in 2011 and trained for months in al qaeda and met with anwar al awlaki. in total, at least 18 people are dead since the rampage began on wednesday. the french prime minister put it bluntly today, his country, france is at war. and here at home u.s. counterterror officials are now investigating any possible links between the french attacks and al qaeda. nbc's ron allen starts us off live from outside the grocery store, which is still an active crime scene at this late hour. ron, what do you know? >> reporter: well toure, what we don't know that's significant is the number of hostages who may have been killed at the grocery store, which is down the street and around the corner there. it's still an area that we're not allowed to get very close to. we're still several block as
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way. we know the most recent reporting suggested there were four hostages killed there, but we're not certain of that number. we believe there may have been as many as 10 or 12 hostages in total in the super market which the gunman took control of early in the afternoon when it would have been filled with shoppers. so, the death toll may be much higher. it may not be. french authorities have not given a final figure about that which is a little curious a little concerning. it has people here wondering when they'll know and what they'll find out. it's been an incredible day here of fast-moving developments that started early on with a carjacking in the north of france involving the kouachi brothers. then a shootout with authorities, a chase, and then a hostage situation out of that printing company out in the industrial park. hours later a supermarket is taken over by another gunman. hostages are held. this goes on for several hours
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until simultaneous raids happen and both situations are brought to a conclusion almost at the same time. just an incredible day where the city daisht country were essentially paralyzed while all of this was going on. hundreds if not thousands of police officers and military officers involved in the situation. the president of france francois hollande, addressed the nation. we're expecting a brief from the interior minister chief law enforcement officer here in the coming hour or so. perhaps he will fill in some more of the details. at this moment people are still not sure that this is over because as you pointed out the alleged female accomplice is still at large. there are reports she may have been killed she may have escaped or she may be on the run. we just don't know. authorities have not filled in the blanks. an incredible day here that has france wondering what now, where do we go now? the president also has said that that of course the nation is at war. very strong language because
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it's been long known here that terrorism -- the threat of terrorism is so endemic in this society society, with so many foreign nationals run returning from jihad in iraq syria and the middle east. that's been exposed in all of this. the divisions in the society, attack on a jewish community and the muslim community, worrying now about a potential backlash because of what's happened. so, france moving forward very carefully, very gingerly. this weekend we expect to see a huge outpouring of solidarity as we have on many nights here. foreign leaders from around the world are expected to come here for a solidarity march as this country tries to pull together and come together. >> thank you very much. this country needs that. let's head 30 miles north of paris to cassandra vinograd where the second hostage situation played out at that printing shop this morning. what's the scene like right now? >> reporter: the scene is very very different from earlier today. when we arrived this morning
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there were dozens and dozens of officers, s.w.a.t. teams, helicopters circling overhead. and endless, endless sirens. now the mood has completely shifted since the siege has ended. the police presence is still here, but in a much lighter form. a lot of the news trucks have started to pull out. it really feels like the mood has completely shifted. >> interesting. thank you very much cassandra. a short time ago president obama spoke about the siege at a previously planned event in tennessee. >> i just spoke to my counterterrorism adviser. we have been in close touch with the french government throughout this tragedy. the moment that the outrageous attack took place, we directed all of our law enforcement and counterintelligence operations to provide whatever support that our ally needs in confronting this challenge. we're hopeful that the immediate threat is now resolved. thanks to the courage and
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professionalism of the french personnel on the ground. but the french government continues to face the threat of terrorism and has to remain vigilant. the situation is fluid. president hollande has made it clear they'll do whatever is necessary to protect their people. and i think it's important for us to understand, france is our oldest ally. i want the people of france to know that the united states stands with you today, stands with you tomorrow. our thoughts and prayers are with the families who have been directedly impacted. we grieve with i. we fight alongside with you to uphold our values. the values we share, universal values, that bind us together as friends and as alloyil alloys. in the streets of paris, the world has seen once again what terrorists stand for. they have nothing to offer but hatred and human suffering. we stand for free dornlgs hope and the dignity of all human
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beings. that's what the city of paris represents to the world. and that spirit will endure forever, long after the scourge of terrorism is baroned from this world. >> that's the president speaking in tennessee. nbc's white house correspondent kristin welker joins us now. we understand the president continues to receive regular updates about the situation and, clearly, is thinking a lot about it. >> reporter: absolutely, toure. he gets regular briefings. he was briefed extensively this morning before he left for tennessee. of course, is he there announcing a new initiative acollege affordable. announcing the first two years of community college will be free for most students. but the events that have been unfolding in france have overtaken the discussions here at the white house. one white house official saying senior administration officials have been in touch with their french counterparts on a minute-by-minute basis throughout the day. toure, president obama was initially dedicating this week to unveiling various proposals
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of his state of the union address. but what has happened in france has dominated most of his attention. yesterday on air force one, he had a telephone call during which he was briefed on the ongoing developments in france but also briefed on the security posture here in the united states. important to point out that according to top administration officials, there is no known threat against the united states right now. having said that federal authorities have urged state and local officials to be on heightened alert. we know there is stepped up security at some of the french consulates in major cities around the country, including new york boston chicago, atlanta. we know that the secret service has stepped up its patrols. president obama in addition to monitoring the situation, also continuing to show the united states solidarity with france. you just heard him say france is america's oldest ally. yesterday he made an unannounced visit to the french embassy here in washington, d.c. and reiterated that sentiment.
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reiterated the fact that united states stands shoulder to shoulder with france. of course, france has been a key ally in the fight against isis. so, all of that going on here behind the scenes. the president continues his travel today, but he will continue to get updates, we anticipate, toure. wouldn't be surprised if at some point he reached out again to france's president, francois hollande. of course, the two spoke on wednesday after the initial terrorist attack and they continue to watch the fast-moving developments here at the white house very closely. >> kristin welker in front of the white house thank you for that. joining us michael sheehan, former assistant secretary of defense for special operations at the pentagon and former deputy commissioner of counterterrorism for the nypd. sir, i'm interested in your -- with your experience in counterterrorism, thinking about what we have seen from these terrorists this week there is an interesting dissidence between what we saw on wednesday, which seemed like a very professional attack and it seemed very clearly like they wanted to get out and they knew how they would escape from that.
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versus what we saw today, where it appears they did not have much of an exfiltration planned and sort of caught fairly difficult but, i mean you know they didn't really know what they were doing in terms of how to get out of the country. why do you think we saw those two different situations? >> it's actually very common toure. i wrote a book about this. i've been studying al qaeda for about 16 years. wrote a book about it. my first chapter was called killers and bunglers. at the same time al qaeda terrorist can be extremely deadly but they do make mistakes on virtually every one of the incidents they've been involved with over the last 15 years. they make mistakes. i predicted at the beginning they would be caught. they have been caught because they make mistakes. it doesn't take away from the fact they can be extremely deadly. it's actually very common. >> as far as we know, the one person who has not been caught is hyatt boumeddiene. how will the manhunt for her be proceeding at this point? >> well they're going to have a lot of leads on where she is.
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she was the -- had a relationship apparently with the guy at the grocery store. they're going to find her as well. it's not clear to what extent she was really involved with this plot. obviously, she was not at either of the sites where the hostages were taken but clearly has a relationship with one of the characters. we'll see the extent of her involvement. but she will be captured. her face is all over the media in france. someone will spot her and she'll be arrested, i imagine, within the next new days. >> michael, we heard reports the mayor of paris order the close of stores in a particularly historic jewish district of paris because they were afraid of soft targets in that area. realistically you can't keep a sections of a city shut down for too long. at what point do they start to reopen the stores does the city start to get back to normal? >> i hope they do so very quickly. they should take a page out of how the israelis respond to these type of incidents. the israelis are clear to get
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back up and running immediately after a terrorist event. even if a bus is blown up on that same route, they'll bring another bus back on that route within hours. they do that to send a message to terrorist, you will not affect our way of life. it's a great way to react to these types of events for other countries. take a page out of the israeli handbook and not allow these people to disrupt your way of life. of course, they have to take increased security measures and some of these potential targets will have to be more careful. on the other hand, i think it's just as important to show these terrorists that they are not going to disrupt the way of life in france and they're going to get to and let the security forces do their job. >> michael, looking at the ongoing threat and from your experience in counterterror, there's a lot of analysis of whether something is al qaeda inspired or actually al qaeda directed. what do you think we've learned today given that these are attackers who had said according to reports that they were trained by al qaeda. they wanted to brandish or share
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that link. and yet as we've been discussing they had no coordination, apparently, about any extraction or larger support to get out of there. >> no. they normally wouldn't. al qaeda will try to direct an attack, even when they're more closely involved than in this one. they're not going to have any personnel there to try to extract them. basically when you're in the west on an operation, you're on your own. this operation, the more we learn about it we see a very close tie to al qaeda, unlike a lot of the lone wolf operations over the last year or two. these people had connections with al qaeda in yemen, which really is the fward operating element of qushgsd the traditional al qaeda right now. they were there. they were trained. they got direction from them as well. the "inspire" magazine particularly targeted this newspaper and the editor. >> do you think there was an ongoing operational link here? >> i don't know if they're talking on a regular basis, but clearly there was a link in terms of training and targeting. that doesn't necessarily mean it had to be on a continuous basis as you might think about a
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military operation or business command and control relationship. it's much more remote than that. but clearly the linkage is there. clearly the direction was there. this is as much of an al qaeda you inspired and directed attack as there has been in years in europe. >> michael, very dramatic television, dramatic scenes as we were watching today as the folks were surrounded in the two different scenes. and then police conducted two raids simultaneously. talk first about the difficulty of conducting two raids simultaneously like that in coordination with each other, as well as the importance of conducting those two raids at the same moment. >> actually the french counterterrorism forces are very very capable. and both within the military and police. so they are very capable of conducting two operations. simultaneously is also easy. they have the radio communication, secure radio communications, that would enable them to do that. but they were concerned that there might be communication between the two, even though they do have technical means to
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jam those communications. i think that's why they did it simultaneously, to make sure that one or the other wasn't tipped off. that is not a very difficult tactical operation for a group as well trained, as well rehearsed as french counterterrorism forces. >> they definitely appear to be very much on their game today. thank you very much for your perspective, michael sheehan. straight ahead, negotiating with terrorists ahead. this hour we'll talk to a man who ran hostage negotiations as a navy s.e.a.l. more breaking coverage to come as "the cycle" continues on this friday, january 9th. hidden fees on savings accounts? that's right. it's just that i'm worried about you know "hidden things..." ok, why's that? no hidden fees from the bank where no branches equals great rates. your mom's got your back. your friends have your back. your dog's definitely got your back. but who's got your back when you need legal help? we do. we're legalzoom, and over the last 10 years we've helped millions of people protect their families and run their businesses.
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you're back in "the cycle." we're continuing breaking news coverage of those terror attacks in paris. joining us now, we're lucky to have dan o'shea, who has extensions ive experience in hostage negotiations as navy s.e.a.l. commander and hostage working group in iraq. he's the kidnap and ransom expert at gramm technologies. and also at the table we have michael kay, retired colonel and british royal forces. thank you for being with us. mikey, if i could start with up. based on what we've seen today, what we know so far, is there any evidence here to you that's indicative of additional possible local coordination, accomplices, additional accomplices here? >> i think that's the million dollar question at the moment. i think there's this sort of sigh of relief the main events are over if you like but also a little bit of caution to tie up loose ends to make sure there's not a secondary device or a follow-up situation.
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to answer your question though, krystal, working over baghdad for many years on hitting high-value assets, we worked off intelligence that took months if not years to collect. you looked on these big boards when you walked in the operations room you see the spider network of various insurgents working throughout the city from the very head of the insurgency all the way through to the person responsible for recruitment, suicide bombers, training equipment, armaments. and it takes years to build up this picture of who's responsible for what. that's done through listening, through image intelligence, and done more importantly through human intelligence. and it's having those people placed within society to get that feedback. in short, i think it's too short to say but the intelligence communities will be working on it. >> dan, i wanted to come to you about where we go from here. and is there any concern that because the attackers have all been killed as a result of these raids, that the -- it hampers
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the intelligence efforts going forward? >> well just to take on the next step that my colleague is talking about, he's 100% right. it takes years to built up this intelligence. these two or three or four individuals, they did not act alone. they have support. they have support within their communities, within their neighborhoods in paris for sure up. know these guys were on a profile list. my contacts i received an e-mail these two groups -- these three individuals, in particular, that carried out the hostage attacks, they came from within a cell that was being tracked. so according to my sources, there's over 5,000 folks on a jihadi watch list in paris alone. over 1,000 fighters 1200 at some accounts have fought in syria most recently. again, these guys came back. the attack was well coordinated. they were professional in some of the things she the showed. yes, there is a big concern. this is just the start. sadly, it's the -- what we've seen here today, what happened in paris, rome you know united
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states, some place else may be next for another attack because this is driving the fuel of terrorism. it's got the world's attention. and it's driving the recruitment. and it's everything that drives these kind of operations. yeah, we're far from over. this is far from being a mop-up operation. this is just the beginning of fall-on intelligence, law enforcement and information sharing that's going to happen not just in france but with our british counterparts and certainly the counterparts here in the united states. >> yeah mikey, it seems once again we're seeing folks who are loosely connected to al qaeda or isis having an attack. so, not sent directly by central command, but not entirely lone wolves either. sort of this middle ground one of these men trained with aqap but was essential not sent by them to do this. it's a dangerous middle ground for folks in the west to try to defend against these people who were you know in this sort of middle space.
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not lone wolves entirely. >> that's a great point. what we've seen from canada, ottawa the sydney siege, paris, what it does is highlights the broad spectrum of threat. whether it be the lone wolf who's got really no connections whatsoever with any of the bigger organizations who has just been disenfranchised or whether it's actually someone who's had training been on operations in syria and come back and carried out these atrocities. but, you know what i want to say about france, and we must be be -- in our analysis we must be specific to various countries. we must look at the historical background of the country. france, for example, we talk about iraq and syria, but france has got a lot of history in north africa. north africa is predominantly muslim. we have megreb. so you have easy access within borders of europe. you have historical background
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in north africa. as dan pointed out, you have over 1200 extremists who have gone to syria and, you know starting to come back. so, there's a lot of -- there's a lot of dynamics involved which make france a particular hot bed. what we shouldn't do is necessarily translate exactly that to what the threat might be to the u.s. for example. >> dan, let's just walk through what we learned about these hostage operation today for those just joining us. we have unconfirmed reports of at least three killed. ron allen telling us earlier in the broadcast, 10 to 12 total hostages may have been taken at one point. we'll continue to stay on confirming that information. from your hostage operation experience, how does this kind of thing work, how long will it take for them to confirm exactly what happened in there, and what are the authorities do with the evidence they have now in what is essentially a second crime scene? >> well let me take a step back. my counterparts have brought up good points about the historical
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history to france. of course most of the french arab population comes from algeria, africa elsewhere. 5 million in the country. have you this huge network. certainly not every muslim in france suspects what happened here but the neighborhoods harboring them. that will be a huge intelligence thing going on for weeks and months to try and wrap up cells. the key point about this what we've just seen over the last 48 hours, 72 hours, this is exactly what drives these guys. it's media attention like this is the fuel that drives this type of terrorism. and it's again, this is how terrorist groups negotiate with the west. so, again, this may be -- you know we just saw as pointed out, we saw this last month in sydney and, again, this is just the tip of the iceberg in my humble opinion. i've been predicting this for over a decade. the lefbs learned originally in iraq in 2004-2006 in al qaeda,
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it's metastasizing across -- it has already reached north american shores. we can expect something like this in the future. >> thank you both so much. coming up what should we make of the locations these individuals chose to carry out their terror? we'll talk about that next. okay buddy what's your favorite kind of cheerios? honey nut. but... chocolate is my other favorite... but apple cinnamon is my favorite too... and fruity... oh yeah, and frosted! okay, but...what's you're most favorite of all? hmm... the kind i have with you. me too. ♪ [upbeat music] ♪ defiance is in our bones. defiance never grows old.
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back with our ongoing breaking coverage of the terror siege in france. joining us is evan coleman, nbc news terrorism analyst and senior at flashpoint partners and kate brandon, her new article exploring the brother's decade long quest to wage holy war. those two brothers killed today in operations. kate i want to start reading from your piece. you say the terrorist' choice of target here implies this attack was not in direct retaliation for french military action
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against isis in iraq. tell us about your reporting on that and why you come to that conclusion. >> i think it's clear this wasn't a military target. it wasn't a government office or government office. this was a satirical magazine. it's part of french and parisian culture. and it's a long-standing target for al qaeda and other islamic extremist groups. so, this isn't about you know direct retaliation for france's role in air strikes in iraq. i think it's -- you know, goes back much farther than that and part of a much bigger ideology. >> indeed. evan we saw the ideological nature of this sort of expand a little bit. first, we were talking about terror with the attack on charlie hebdo. but the attack today on a kosher supermarket. president hollande referred to it as an anti-semitic act. brings above the ground the anti-semitic nature of the sort of radical fringe islamists. >> we've seen that pattern.
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we started off obviously with the attack by mourad then the attack on the jewish museum up in brussels both individuals trained in afghanistan or in syria, but were apparently operating under their own orders. they may have been received training from someone but they did what they saw as their own priorities. it is disturbing, the fact they're going after soft targets and targeting minorities within france. historically minorities that have faced the exact same kind of pressure from other groups in france. again, one of the worst parts about this is this is compounded by not only having this tragedy of people being murdered, then on top of it having right wing neofascist parties benefit from it. that's the ultimate tragedy. >> kate based on your research tell us more about this small network that these individuals, these terrorists were reportedly involved with. >> so cherif, the younger
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brother, his sort of brush with you know foreign global network first started after the 2003 invasion of iraq. he fell in with this group called the 19th network named after the neighborhood out of which it operated in paris. it basically funneled young muslim men, parisian muslims to fight in iraq. they would stop in syria along the way, along the route. he was arrested in 2005 before he was -- before he left for iraq, so he actually never made it to iraq. but it was pretty high profile at the time. the french authorities brought down this network. it shows a clear record for the younger brother. it's not clear whether said was also involved that far back. we do know now he traveled to yemen as recently as 2011 where he also had connections to al qaeda in yemen, it seems. so both brothers have what
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appears to be a long record of links to al qaeda, either in iraq or in yemen. >> evan just following up on that point, so we're now talking about al qaeda again, whereas we spent a lot of the summer and fall talking about isis, does this attack have the hallmarks to you of al qaeda or al qaeda in the arabian peninsula? >> it could be aqap or isis and they hate each other, the faktics as far as they apply them internationally, they're basically the same thing. one of the curious reports is we have reports, one of the attackers, the individual who took the hostage at the jewish supermarket said he was isis. yet the kouachis told french radio they were aqap. now, if they were highly coordinated, why would they claim they were directed by two different groups we all know hate each other? there was the sense maybe they
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weren't quite as coordinated as they empty mated. >> it's extraordinary they spoke to french radio today. can you talk more about that? that is unbelievable. >> apparently a french radio station claims they spoke by phone with both attackers, separately. they had long conversations with them. again, it was very interesting. they spoke first with said kouachi and they spoke second with the individual who took the jewish supermarket. it was very strange. because the guy at the jewish supermarket, immediately after kouachi said he was trained and financed by aqap he said oh we're in close coordination and i'm islamic state. now, this doesn't make any sense at all. it seems much more likely again, we have to see what the evidence is but it seems much more likely this second individual saw his friends on tv recognized that he would likely get arrested as well or get picked up and decided he would join in on this. but, you know the claim of close coordination there, there's a lot of questions about that. there's a lot of reason to doubt that that was closely as coordinated, at least as what they're suggesting.
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>> evan coleman and kate thank you both for your time today. after the break, we'll check in with nbc news justice correspondent pete williams for the latest on what he's hearing from his sources on this fast-moving story. music: melodic, calm music. hi this is conor. sorry i missed you. i'm either away from my desk or on another call... ... please leave a message and i'll get back to you... ... just as soon as i'm available. thank you for your patience at this busy time. join us for stargazing with discovery at sea.
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in the nissan altima. now, get great offers on the 38 mpg highway nissan altima. nissan innovation that excites. let's go to pete williams. >> a couple of notes here. first of all, the u.s. has been checking to see if there are any possible connections between these four people that the french have been dealing with the last two days and anyone in the u.s. and they're satisfied there isn't any. picking up on what you've been talking about, about the connections here. looking back at these pictures of the two brothers the two kouachi brothers and the third person we heard about today, amedy coulibaly, it turns out
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they have had some association before. because cherif kouachi was arrested in 2005 and served some time for trying to go over to iraq, but then he was arrested again in 2010. and both he cherif kouachi, that's the -- of the two brothers, the one on the right, and amedy coulibaly were charged together in 2010 with a plot to spring from prison an algerian terrorist who had been convicted of blowing up a french train facility. so they have a connection that goes back at least four years. they obviously knew each other by 2010. how much they stayed in contact, how much what's happened in the last two days is a matter of close coordination between the two, we don't yet know. but the fact is coulibaly
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doesn't just come out of nowhere in terms of the two brothers. so they had a previous connection. >> that's a great update. thanks, pete. now let's bring in msnbc law enforcement analyst jim cavanaugh. at the table with us sal, a former member of the nypd hostage negotiations team who now runs the firm protective countermeasures, incorporated. sal, we just heard pete tell us it looks like there's a connection between these two. we know at least one of them has been on u.s. terrorism watch lists and even french terrorism watch lists. it sounds like surveillance of these targets lapsed a little bit. are we going to see an increase in surveillance of some targets that may have been lapse add long the way? >> i think the big problem you have in frastnce, what they've been talking about the last couple of days is you have 5,000 suspects and you're trying to establish, you know who do we really watch today? when you start to look at all of
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the other intelligence information you gather from either the telephone or internet or you know confidential informants, when you start putting that together, they may have not hit the top tier. they may have slid down some. it's a matter of trying to apply the proper resources. unfortunately, this is something they'll have to go through -- the french authorities are going to get questioned on. i don't know if there is a solid answer to that. >> sal additionally let's go back to sort of on the ground there in paris, france. obviously, the two hostage situations diffused at this point. but we don't know what's going to happen next. what are the threats you would be most concerned about? >> what we've been worried about for the longest time is the lone wolf, the person who takes a gun and goes out and does something, similar as it started this morning. goes into the supermarket and starts taking hostages or would go into a crowded area and start shooting someone. the lone wolf is the real problem.
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domestically, you know, obviously we're trying to take a look at what's -- is there any connection with the group there? is there anybody here doing it? i think more importantly, what we're going to be worried about here is copycats and someone here trying to do the same exact thing. >> jim, we have discussed these sorts of attacks in america, in england and now in france before on this show. but they're almost always conducted by -- wonder what you make of hayat boumeddiene, the woman who seems to have been involved in this and as we go through this investigation, we may find out there are more people involved in this group because they seem to have perhaps needed even more of a support team to have carried all this out. >> right, toure. they had a little cell going on for years. they had some signs come up. they had the one brother convicted in 2008 as pete just outlined, that others are --
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both arrested in 2010. these guys then travel to yemen. they both maybe travel to syria, was one report. these things should tick them up on the radar. you know i agree with sal. it is a numbers game. you know, i had a number of joint terrorism task forces in my area. lots of agents i had assigned to those. there's so many targets to surveil, it's like abe lincoln said you can watch all the terrorists all the time and some of the terrorists some of the time but you can't watch all the terrorists all of the time up. just don't have the people to do it. so is this little cell is it inspired? is it directed? or is it connected? i'd say, rather it falls in the middle. it was not directed by al awlaki from the grave, but it's a connected unit. they funneled fighters to iraq before. they've traveled to yemen before. so they're more than just inspired. they're a little connected. a lot of this might have been
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self-initiated against the newspaper, which had a lot of motives for the terrorists to hit that newspaper. a lot of motives. it falls into everything they want. >> operationally what we looked at here was a very murderous, cold terrorist, efficient operation initially, right, in the mass murder. and then what we saw unfold today there in france was what other guests and experts have called sort of a bungled or emergency-style operation that resulted ultimately from their deaths. in your view of the hostage context, how much does it matter for authorities whether they're dealing with folks who set out to do a hostage operation or in this case seemingly fled and then that just became a by-product of them trying get away? >> yeah as horrible as this hostage thing was today, it would be ten times worse if it was a mumbai-style hostage taking event where they took over the hotels and the jewish school and the death toll was
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much higher. so this was two fugitives trying get away from the police who decided to take hostages in the interim. not knowing what to do. and then one other actor, who's a friend of theirs may have been involved at -- at the assault at charlie, and then he goes off in a hostage situation that he kind of develops as well. it doesn't look like the hostage situation was long term planned. raeshgs a rather, a response to the events that unfolded. why would i say that? i would say this that because of this. they could have stayed at newspaper and died when the police came. they didn't. they wore masks. masks really are two reasons. to intimidate or to hide your identity. i believe it was more likely to hide their identity because they were going to escape and they planned to escape. so they weren't planning on the hostage scenario. >> right. >> you know we got dead hostages. if you watch the hostage team enter, i can tell you on-scene
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commander, we're always worried about those things. worried about what's going on. the timing of the entry. look, it took the team 30 or more seconds to get across from the first point when they're at the door when the hostage taker could probably see them if this is their main initial point of entry until they can get through the steel security gates of the deli. in 30 seconds, it's a tough thing. teams have to face this. it's a tough thing but it's enough time for that guy to make those -- maybe kill a few hostages. so, you're faced with tough things to deal with in these cases. >> right. jim, thanks so much. sal, thank you too. up next paris on edge. the split between mainstream society and the muslims who live there next.
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insurance in a whole new light. liberty mutual insurance. breaking news out of paris. nbc news confirmed it was four hostages killed in that grocery store in paris. our hearts go out to their families. joining us now, former fbi profiler clint van zandt and kathleen american enterprise institute who leads analysis on al qaeda. clint, when you're leading a hostage situation like this, it's very difficult because obviously you are caring about the lives of the hostages and you also want to take out the suspects. do you really care about whether or not you kill them? do you really want to capture them? or do you want to just eliminate
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them as quickly as possible? >> well, let's say from an intelligence purpose, you want to capture them alive. you want to find out who this net is and who else is involved. out who this net is and who else is involved. if you are the man or woman going through that door and somebody's got a gun in their hand you want to dump them as quick as you can so they can't hurt you or hurt anyone else. this is my challenge, supposedly on this female accompanyist of the terrorist in the grocery store. how did she get away. 1.1 million people on a terrorism watch list. 12 french men or women who need to be watched who returned from syria. do the math at ten agents per person, you know that says you need 12,000 cops. but when you're got 10 people or 15 people running out of a grocery store. you got 80,000 cops working this
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case, you put one cop on every person and we always treat a released hostage like we think they're a bad guy until they find out otherwise. i don't know how she got away. >> katherine there has been a lot of conversation about the porous borders in europe. you can flow easily from one country to another. and these remember homegrown terrorists, french citizens. is trying to ramp down down porousness at the border is that a strategy to cut down on al qaeda? >> closing down the abortersborders is one way to do it but it's a band-aid. they have safe havens in yemen and syria and iraq where individuals can go and train and come home. that's what needs to be addressed the places where al
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qaeda is operating and able to train these people to commit terrorist attacks. >> we know that authorities have detained nine family members of the kouachi brothers. as we try to unravel what happened here and if there may have been other people involved how useful will the family members be? >> well everybody's going to be useful. the two kouachi brothers the french have known about them for at least ten years and known of potential involvement in a terrorist cell for at least ten years. when they do the wiring diagram and find everybody these two brothers had contact with to include family members that's going to be a very extensive wiring gram -- wiring diagram that they have to look at. they're going to be looking at hundreds, maybe tens of hundreds of people trying to find out every contact, every phone contact. every e-mail.
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we know they've got surveillance pictures of these guys that exist for a number of years. everybody they've ever reached out and touched they're going to have to find again. but look you know we're afraid of lone wolf terrorists. your last guests have said so. but if we go back 2002 the d.c. sniper, we go back to the boston marathon bomber last year. we go to this these are small unit activities. these aren't 9/11 types and these aren't necessarily lone wolves. these are two or three friends, family members that are working together. as much as we keep saying a lone wolf is something to fear it's these small unit activities that seem to be successful that the authorities will is to deal with in the future. >> catherine you have studied al qaeda and we have an operational and strategic question over how coordinated this was with link
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linkages back to yemen. who makes the decision if they are aligned with al qaeda operationally that this is a murder attack and not a suicide attack. we have seen more suicide attacks. is that something that these potential al qaeda volunteers would decide. we want to kill these people it's pre-isis operations and they decide they don't want to do a suicide attack or if this is coordinated this is a higher level decision. >> the answer to that question is changed and i think what we're seeing is higher level decisions being green lighting an attack saying go conduct a low-scale attack back in france or the united states. do it however you want. we'll support as we. can so this may have been a choice by the brothers to conduct as they did. >> do you view that as a decision made under duress or they are just always adapting? >> they are always adapting and the strategy of these low-level
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attacks was put forward by aqap in this english-language magazine "aspire." it called for small attacks. don't travel don't train, buy a gun and here's how you do it. >> these calls are so powerful and seductive. we spent most of the year focused on isis but it's al qaeda is saying we can reach you too and we don't have to have a direct -- katherine, a direct relationship to the small unit that will attack you. >> that's been the threat. and it hasn't been existent until recently. you haven't seen people take the isis standpoint and the growing competition between isis and al qaeda and there are many more isolated terrorist attacks occurring. i think we can project forward many more are likely to come if
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either group has a say in it. >> that seems to be the truth. thank you for your time. it is another tough night on the streets of paris where the time is approaching 10:00 p.m. we'll have more on this breaking story. alex wagner picks up our coverage. that's next. thanks for the ride around norfolk! and i just wanted to say geico is proud to have served the military for over 75 years! roger that. captain's waiting to give you a tour of the wisconsin now. could've parked a little bit closer... it's gonna be dark by the time i get there. geico. proudly serving the military for over 75 years.
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three terror suspects have been killed. one remains at large and the a.p. is reporting that the al qaeda group in yemen is claiming responsibility for the attack.
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>> it has totalled up to a bloody 48 hours in and around paris. ♪ [ gunshots ]. >> in the streets of paris the world's seen once again what terrorists stand for. >> nobody in france has experienced anything like the carnage that took place. >> they have nothing to off by hatred and human sufrg. >> small groups of people that essentially shut down and terrorize a city. >> the three gunmen are now dead. >> the two kouachi brothers cornered at a printing press. >> the gunmen took hostages at a grocery store. >> the individuals are being e escorted out. >> many many more questions to be answered. >> the thing that scares them