tv Americas Newsroom FOX News September 10, 2013 6:00am-8:01am PDT
go ahead. >> steve: you're using her as a human shield. >> gretchen: take him! you're dead. have a great day, everyone. see you tomorrow. >> brian: i got to go. bye, guys. watch the documentary. bill: morning everybody, 9:00 here in new york. fox news alert. there has been a sunning turnaround in the syrian crisis by the hour, every hour for the past 20 four hours and from talks of military force to possible diplomacy. only moments ago, syria says it accept as russian plan to put its chemical weapons under international control as president obama gets set to address the nation later tonight in prime time. our heads are spinning. you're not alone. i'm bill hemmer. welcome to "america's newsroom." how are you doing, partner? martha: very interesting. very interesting. good morning, everybody, i'm martha maccallum. moments ago the white house is saying the president will still use this opportunity tonight to try to rally support in congress
for military strikes against syria. this after he did an about-face with fox news's chris wallace where he says he believes diplomacy could still work. watch. >> will you delay a strike to see how that plays out? >> i think it is fair to say that we would not be at this point would you a credible threat of a military strike but i welcome the possibility of the development and john kerry will be talking to his russian counterparts. i think we should explore and exhaust all avenues of diplomatic resolution of this. bill: well this all started yesterday when the secretary of state john kerry made what appeared to be an offhand remark, saying the only thing that could stop u.s. strikes would be if syria turned over its chemical weapons but he said it can't be done. then the state department spokeswoman tried to walk back that statement, saying quote, he was making a rhetorical argument. russian's foreign minister
proposed putting syria chemical weapons under international control. syria's foreign minister in moscow for talks agrees. welcomes the russian proposal to quote, avert american aggression. president obama during a series of interviews refers to a russian proposal as a modestly positive develop amend and adding that the u.s. would absolutely hold off on military strikes if assad and its regime gave up control of its medical weapons. byron york, "washington examiner." fox news contributor. byron, good morning to you. moment ago from jay carney, he would still make possibility of military action and military action is forcing assad's hand to move on the issue one way or the other. 11 days ago from the white house he made it clear that military action is what he prefers. where are we now? >> well, i think we're in the same place. remember chris's question was actually about the timing of a strike and the president may indeed put it off.
we have never known when it will come. if it does come. but the white house is trying to be consistent with what the president has said up until now and on august 30 first, when he comes out and says he will seek authorization from congress, he said, after careful deliberation, i have decided that the united states must make military strikes on syrian regime targets. is that careful deliberation off now? no, i don't think so. the president's is going to say that he still believes that the u.s. should strike militarily. there is a solution workable and can be reached beforehand perhaps that will put that off but i don't think the president can back down off this threat he made. bill: if this is the route he takes this could fester for years. that is precisely what happened with saddam hussein in iraq. >> absolutely. the problem is, that after, this thing really snowballed so fast yesterday. everybody seemed to grab on to it as a kind of a lifeline out of the trap of going into, into war but i think the next day,
today, a little bit of the glow is going to fade from this. they will see this is a possibly unworkable situation. look at the cat-and-mouse game saddam hussein played with weapons inspectors, that iran has played with weapons inspectors. does anybody believe syria won't do the same thing a year's long situationany, on top of that you have a civil war still, that was not happening during iraq during those years. here is secretary of state john kerry when he made this comement that i will ask you about, whether it was intentional or not. >> he could turn over every single built of his chemical weapons to the international community, next week, turn it over, all of it, without delay and allow a full and total accounting for that but he isn't about to do it and, can't be done. bill: i mean, we're guessing here. was that offhand? was it intentional? >> i have no idea. bill: that is what really started the snowball. >> yeah, listen i have no idea and i'm not sure anybody on the outside does.
secretary kerry sound ad little jet-lagged to me when he said that as you pointed out early the state department backed away from it. russians jumped on it and syrians too. all of sudden it is the lifeline out of this mess. i don't think it is really clear what's going on. we should point out that the president said to chris wallace and others yesterday that he talked about some plan like this with vladmir putin when they were at the g20 meeting a few days ago. so you know, it is really unclear whether this is something actually on the table, in the works, whether it was a gaffe that secretary kerry made or what. we still don't know exactly how the plan was came out. bill: we know what the polling says. american people don't want it. we know what they're saying in congress. byron york with all that leading off in washington. martha. martha: it will be very interesting to see what the president actu tonight in that prime time address. bret baier will anchor coverage starting at 8:55:00 p.m. eastern time tonight.
shepard smith on the big fox network at 9:00 p.m. we'll see how this all turns out. this coming in a little while ago. senator john mccain who has one of the most outspoken individuals on this whole thing. he is reacting to syria accepting russia's chemical weapons proposal. he has been a staunch advocate for a strike on syria's regime. he said many members of congress are scratching their heads about the whole thing but we have no choice but to let this new diplomatic initiative play out. listen. >> since there are people who have just been in looking at whether there was actually chemical weapons used or not, and i'm sure that they could secure these areas and that way it would be a major step forward in their disposal. again, put me down as skeptical but obviously we can't ignore the possibility, but i would also like to point out, i still think that we need to continue or begin to provide aid to the
free syrian army so that we can change the momentum and a negotiated settlement that leads to bashar assad's departure. martha: yes. for the administration said that is what they wanted as well, to provide a transition for assad to eventually leave. the senator says there is incoherence in the administration's statement on syria and that america's armying of the rebels has been botched. bill: meanwhile as the president gets ready to address the nation later tonight brand new fox polling finds disapproval of his handling of the syrian situation has jumped now to 60%. that's an increase of 20 points from may of this year and just 29% now say they approve the job the president is doing in this matter, down from 37% back in the month of may. a number about lawmakers also against u.s. military intervention including republican senator mike lee out of utah. >> the american people aren't with him on this because it's a terrible idea! this would be
really risky for america to weigh in on one side or the other in this awful civil war in syria without a clear plan as to what we're trying to accomplish and without any clear explanation how this makes americans safer, rather than less safe. so faced with that reality, they, allowed their story to evolve. they change it constantly. the american people are fed up with it. bill: lee went on to talk, with sean hannity, saying he would be all for a diplomatic solution to the standoff if there is a way to keep president assad from using chemical weapons again. martha: the markets have also rallied on this news there is the possibility of a diplomatic breakthrough with syria. they finished yesterday up more than 140 points. they are poised to move higher again today when the market opens. stuart varney joins me now, host of "varney & company" on the fox business network. stuart, good morning. >> good morning, martha. martha: obviously the oil prices will like this situation because it remove as big question mark at least for now, right? >> martha, money has no
morality. money doesn't care for the right or wrong of syria situation. money looks at the situation there will not be immediate attack and therefore less risk, less uncertainty. so you have stock markets all around the world rallying again. the dow jones average will open maybe 90 points higher in a few minutes time that is on top of 140 points up yesterday. meanwhile as you suggested, martha, the market is reacting in oil. the price of oil is way down this morning. it is down close to $3 a barrel. doesn't sound like much but that is a big drop. the price of gold, because there is less uncertainty, way down, off 22 bucks an ounce. martha: what fascinates me about this, stuart, putin was saying during the g20, this would be awful for world economies. if you guys strike syria, this will be real economic blow. putin will come across as the guy who rescued the global economy off this, right? >> that was china's line, right.
that is how it will come across. money has no morality. it simply looks for profit. that's it, boys. martha: is that bad? >> no, not in my opinion. martha: that is the way it is. >> money is objective. martha: exactly. >> if you got money you want to make profit on it. that is how you do it. martha: stuart, thank you. will be interesting day in the markets. see ya. >> sure. bill: that is great line from varney, all the years he has been with us, money has no morality. martha: make t-shirts. money has no morality. bill: we're just getting rolling here. much more on the diplomatic turnaround? is vladmir putin pulling the strings here and once again running rings around the white house or are they just buying some time? we'll shake that down. martha: boy, oh, boy. have you seen this? a man videotape ad stunning confession on youtube. now he is heading to court after he confessed. will his lawyer talk about why he did it? that's coming up. >> i killed a man.
martha: well, take a look at what folks in denver waking up to this morning. it is not a early snow but a whole lot of hail out there. you can wear your shorts and bringing out a shovel. a strong storm triggered flooding on several streets. national weather service issued flood advisories out there. telling folks they really need to be careful. bill: syria said to be claiming it has accept ad russian propositively to put all of its chemical weapons under international control. chris wallace asked president obama about this yesterday. if this is a way of putin's way of mixing things up?
>> we were at a g20 meeting at los cabos last year. i suggested the need for russia and the united states to work on this particular problem. it doesn't solve the underlying syrian conflict. if we can solve the chemical weapons issue which is a threat to us and the world, then it does potentially lay the groundwork for further discussions around how you can bring about a political settlement inside of syria. bill: mike barrett, former director of strategy for the homeland security council, intelligence officer for the office of secretary of defense. mike, good morning to you. >> good morning, bill. bill: this is vladmir putin and barack obama. who is pulling the strings in this tug-of-war now? >> i think clearly, you know, putin comes out on top of these things. he looks like the hardcore, hard-nosed realist. one realities here, the administration, president obama is trying very hard to give america a kinder, gentler appearance to the world and
talking about sending messages to hard-liners. the hard-liners only understand the use of force. that is where he got himself into a jam. he either has to use force and use it decisively which will hurt our image with moderates, or he has got to essentially let this go which he seems unwilling to do. >> putin is rung the show here right? whether syria or iran he has been pulling all the levers for 2 1/2 years, if not more. >> absolutely. the reality as you mentioned, iran is a critical part of this because it is all about the regional power dynamics. russia uses their position on the u.n. security council to basically dictate, you know, global power at this point because the u.s. is stymied because we keep trying to work through those international organizations. bill: it smells like this is moving toward a u.n. solution again? >> yeah i mean -- bill: shades of saddam hussein. assad learned from the king of deception. >> absolutely. we had 10 years. i used to be involved in the activities trying to stop oil smugglers out of iraq and capture wmd being moved around
and things like that. when the u.n. weapons inspectors try to go in to control these things at indof the day you only know a tiny piece what was going on. after 10 years of heaven gangment, we were wrong whether -- heaven gaugement we kent. on the other hand, it was may be one of few ways we get out of this without lobbing missiles into the middle after civil war and defacto picking side to a group that seems to be allied with al qaeda. ironically as we talk the day before the 9/11 anniversary. bill: it call comes back to this, the red line, whether it was month ago or 13 months ago. roll it. >> i didn't set a red line. the world set a red line. we have been very clear to the assad regime but also to other players on the ground that a red line for us is, we start seeing
a whole bunch of chemical weapons moving around or being utilized that would change my calculus. that would change my equation. bill: so we went out and asked viewers at home what they thought. we asked the request whether or not the world drew a line or whether or not president obama did it. whether that is ducking responsibility or ducking responsibility. a clear majority say he is ducking responsibility at 54%. in the end he was coming down to looking for a way out of this because the public wasn't in favor of it. he would force liberal democrats in congress to vote against their conscience to lob cruise missiles into the country and he did not want to back them into that corner either. >> that is absolutely true the red line we should draw, the one we really care about that you don't use chemical weapons or nuclear weapons, god forbid, against your nabe bomber we have the thing that goes back to 1600s. the treaty of westphalia.
after 100 years war, we're' agreeing when you do inside the country is up to you. what you do attacking neighbors, community of nations will get involved. that kept relative peace. there have been terrible wars but kept relative peace for 500 years. that is the world community's red line. what you do inside your country we have to accept as civil war. when it comes to -- that is where the false red line, where we say if we don't act here iran will be empowered to attack israel. that is silly analogy, falls analogy people push for their own agenda. reality whether we interfere with syria's domestic use of chemical weapons during a civil war has no bearing whether we protect israel from iran. bill: in 15 seconds what o does he say tonight. >> he would have be able to talk a more soft peddle approach. he will hide behind congress and behind the international community. eventually, my prediction we'll kick this to the united nations.
the issue will fizzle out and assad will retain some of his chemical weapons and russia will look stronger. bill: mike barrett, thank you for your time. good to get your expertise. mike barrett from washington. 20 past. here is martha. martha: what a difference a day makes. congress gets some breathing room they craved. and the president's question tonight, will he give a full throated appeal for the right to strike in the speech tonight. will he? we'll talk about that. bill: is george zimmerman in trouble with the law. what happened that made his wife call 911. >> in the area where you're at, okay? stay on the line with me. >> okay. okay. i don't know what he is capable of. i'm really scared.
martha: how about this story this morning? george zimmerman was b handcuffs yesterday after a fight with his estranged wife. remember zimmerman was acquitted for murdering unarmed teenager trayvon martin back in july and shellie zimmerman's frantic call to the police she said he threatened her with a gun. >> we have units enroute to you ma'am. is he still there. >> yes he i was and the gun on me? >> is he inside? >> no he is in his car and continually has his hand on his gun, and he is saying step closer. he is threatening all of us. >> step closer with what. >> with his firearm and he is going to shoot us. martha: that was a crazy 911 call. after that shellie zimmerman and her dad decided to file no charges against george zimmerman. now the florida police are questioning whether he had a gun at all. phil keating is live in miami on this. so, phil, boy, these folks can't seem to stay out of the news.
what is going on with this? >> reporter: yeah, keep in mind, george zimmerman been pulled over twice for speeding since being acquitted in july of murdering trayvon martin. as for the gun on the scene, well george zimmerman's attorney late yesterday said, george zimmerman did have a firearm on the scene but neither shellie zimmerman, her father, or police on the scene ever saw the gun. it may have been in his car the whole time or maybe he had it under his shirt. during the altercation and then put it in his car. police say both george zimmerman and shellie zimmerman's father, david dean, admit hitting each other in what was clearly a very emotional incident as you're about to hear more of but neither wants to press charges. >> -- inside, correct? >> yes. >> shellie, you're doing really good. this is a tough situation for anyone. all right? i will stay on the line with you all right?
>> okay. >> are you okay? you said he took something out of your hand. do you need medical as well? >> i don't think so. just shock. >> okay. >> i'm going to go ahead and update the response, okay? >> okay. >> dad, get inside right now. >> make sure he stays inside until someone comes and let's you guys know for you it is okay to step outside. >> okay. >> we're getting them to come to you. they can't come up to check out your father until they secure the scene, okay? >> okay. hold on one second. >> okay, shellie, take a couple deep breaths for me, all right.
>> i think everybody got a little out of hand. there may have been some pushing and touching. that happens a lot in divorce situations, way more than it should. i'm very glad it did not cause any injuries whatsoever to anybody. nobody was injured. bill: also during the 911 call, shellie zimmerman tells the dispatcher that george zimmerman grabbed her ipad and took a pocket knife and slashed the screen and threw it on the ground. this morning lake mary police do have her ipad. they believe shelly george zimmerman was holding it up videotaping george zimmerman inside the house during the altercation. they're trying to extract whatever video remains on the ipad. martha: that is quite a scene in the house. there was surprise or twist this story? >> reporter: this was from the early aerials from the news helicopters over the area just south of the seminole county courthouse. you see a blond woman with
george hiding in the bushes and she eventually drives away. when shellie and her father spot the woman from inside the house on phone with 911. they sound stunned, shocking flooredded with this development. shelly george zimmerman just filed for divorce from george. after murder iringen being found innoncent from murdering trayvon martin. he has been emotional in the past but never physical. during the altercation yesterday the sound of shelly george zimmerman's voice, sounds things could have actually escalated further. as mark o'mara said, nobody was injured. that is what the emts on the scene said, despite shellie zimmerman's claim she thought maybe at one point her father's nose had been broken. martha: boy all of that brought tremendous changes to all these people, the whole trial and everything. so who knows.
thank you, phil good to talk to you. >> reporter: all right. bill: the police came out and talked to reporters and said we don't have any evidence there was a gun here. martha: they said to phil, he did have a gun but that it was in the car. it was, no one ever saw the gun during the course of this whole confrontation. who knows. bill: crazy time, right? we're getting new reaction on the stunning turn of events from russia. out moves could you, damascus and washington, what the staunch reporters of hitting syria are now saying. how does the strength of our country look now? wisest kid in the whole world?
martha: so the strongest supporter of strikes in syria is now responding to the diplomatic developments that have happened, facing very little support for action. now the president says that syria could turn over their weapons and make this all go away but at the same time the white house is still saying that the president will use this prime time address tonight to push for congressional approval of missile strikes. here's senator john mccain on this idea of diplomacy at this point. >> i think it's an option that needs to be pursued and i have to be frank, i am very, very skeptical about whether it will actually succeed or not because bashar assad is using those weapons in order to maintain his
advantage in battles. it has been a totally incoherent strategy and message without a plan and it's, and it has shown up in american public opinion. martha: totally incoherent strategy without a plan says john mccain. joined by brad blakeman, former deputy assistant to former president george w. bush and bob beckel, co-host of "the five." good to see you both. what do you think about what john mccain had to say there and this whole thing? >> incoherent strategy you've been hearing this from republicans. mccain has been in favor of doing something in syria but he has been there for a long time, not just this crisis. i agree it's a long way from a done deal the russian proposal, if, if it were to happen it is no question because obama ordered military power off the coast of syria and if it doesn't happen he will still go ahead with or without congress.
>> i expect tonight the will say i need congress's backing on military strikes because we don't know what will happen now. we'll give them time to breathe and come forward and if they make good on the proposal to get rid of chemical weapons strikes but we still need this hanging over their head. brad, does that make sense? >> no, it does not and here's why. the american people are not convinced it has a national purpose and the president has any credit credibility on this issue. american people are still stunned by benghazi and nsa. there is very little confidence that the president wasn't even to get one ally, if america goes, we go. not stand behind us, be with us. the fact that the president left the g20 with not anything on the economy, without any support on military intervention, tills me that the president acts without congress, he is acting against the american will of the american people and he does so at his peril. martha: that may be what happens but how does he walk this line tonight, bob. if you were advising him, for
the past 48 hours he and every single top deputy in his administration have been out there banging the drum for this strike. this is what has to happen. tough give the president your backing on this it is so important. his presidency is at stake. vladmir putin swoops in and says, don't worry about it, we'll take care of it i will talk to assad and we'll work this whole thing out. you guys cool your jets. it will be okay. >> it wouldn't happen unless obama was prepared to use military action. what happens tonight, as he finally lays out to the evidence all the stuff people talk about there isn't, much, republicans particularly there isn't much evidence. there is plenty of evidence. i don't think you ought to cross the line and say, unless congress votes for this i'm not going to be stopped from using military action if i have to. there's nothing in the constitution, war powers act makes it very clear, george bush, george h.w. bush, all of them used war powers act. martha: he already stepped past that war powers act moment, in
this whole thing, did he not. >> that's right. >> why is that? martha: he stepped past the war powers moment. he had the moment and didn't act. then he went to congress to get their approval. he may say that tonight, brad. he may say, if they don't do what they say they will do i use my presidential power and strike. >> why go to congress? mr. president you made the determination you wanted congress's advise and consent. you could have acted on your own. you said you had power to do it. you had executive power under the constitution under war powers act and you abdicated to congress. martha: bob, congress is breathing a hue sigh of relief. they don't want to make this vote. they don't want to stick their neck out and say, go ahead, mr. president, we'll give you this authority, right? >> they all acted like a bunch weasel politicians, democrats and republicans. republicans have a cheap vote against obama. it is immoral and irresponsible not to do something about
nuclear weapons. martha: chemical weapons. >> i mean to use chemical weapons, have been hitler and saddam hussein. now we want to allow this guy to continue doing that? if you don't support this action then yourself -- >> wait a second, bob. democrats were against president bush going in on chemical weapons. >> i said both of them. you didn't have chemical weapons. >> sure he used them against the kurds and his own people. >> wait a minute. this is don rumsfeld talking about intelligence is like listening to howdy doody talk about brain surgery. give me a break. you guys screwed that thing up so badly, it is not even come prehensible compared to this. martha: we'll see what happens tonight. thank you so much, you guys. >> thank you. martha: it's a hot one. he will have to walk a very careful line with all of this evening. we'll be watching, thank you, bob. >> you're welcome. martha: thank you, brad. bill: to our folks at home, be sure to visit our brand new politics page. sign up for our daily political newsletter. you can get that on the road at home or at work.
foxnews.com, enter your email address and get the top political headlines every day delivered right to you. remember when mitt romney said 47% of the americans don't pay taxes. turns out he was wrong. he missed it by four points. the new report and how did that many americans get away not paying any federal taxes. that is next. martha: this incredible story. a man's youtube confession goes viral. and now he has been arrested and will head to court. we'll talk to his attorney. >> on that particular night i made a mistake and got in my truck. i believe i blacked out and decided to try to drive home. i ended up going the wrong way down the highway directly into on-coming traffic. and i struck a car. i killed a man.
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this morning. small business owners who thought they were off the hook until 2015 may be in for a somewhat expensive wake-up call and it could happen next month. beginning october 1, that is when all this is set to get underway, any business with unemployee and half million dollars in annual revenue must notify all employees by letter about obamacare's health care exchanges or they will face $100 per employee per day fine. those exchanges are set to open for business. the doors will be thrown open on october 1. won't that be interesting to watch? bill: these weeks. he made a stunning confession and posted it online on youtube. 22-year-old matthew cordle out-of-state of ohio admitted killing a 61-year-old man in a video online. it hit the web a week ago, apparently against the advice of his lawyer. this is part of it. >> i killed a man. i was out with some friend.
we were all drinking really heavily. just hopping from bar to bar. was trying to have a good time and i lost control. on june 202nd, 2013, i hit and killed vincent can sawn any. this video will act as my confession. if charged i will applied guilty and take full responsibility for everything i have done to vincent and his family. bill: cordle was indicted on aggravated vehicular homicide charges. expected to plead guilty today. george brightmire his attorney out of columbus, ohio. why did he make the video? >> he made it for two purposes. for one to raise the purpose seriousness around issues of drinking and driving a reach out to the family to offer them
closure to avoid drawn out legal proceedings. bill: why make the statement online. why not go directly to the family of victim? >> i think he want ad larger impact. to help prevent other people pro being situation he is in and the canzani family. people reached out to both matthew, reached out to me. said the video affected them in a positive way. hopefully out of this tragedy at least some good may have come from this. bill: here is more of the video. this is it how it concludes. >> i beg you, i say the word beg, specifically, i'm begging you, please don't drink and drive. don't make the same excuses that i did. don't say it is only a few miles or you only had a few beers or you do it all the time. it will never happen to you because it happened to me. all of those are excuses to make yourself feel bet ear about a
decision that you know is wrong and could cost lives. i can't bring mr. canzani back. and i can't erase what i've done but you can still be saved. your victims can still be saved. so please. bill: what did he tell you about that? >> excuse me? bill: what did he tell you about that? >> about the message he was trying to relay? bill: yes. >> he said that he was trying to reach a large group of people. you know, matt's been riddled with guilt since this whole thing happened. and he wanted a way he could reach out and help other people from having to go through what he went through. and this was one way that he could get his message, not only to everybody out there in the general public but also directly to the canzani family. bill: what is the canzani family
said about that? >> you know, my understanding is there has been some mixed reviews. from the canzani family. i don't necessarily want to go into detail about their reaction to the video. i know in general i think it has been well-received bit public. i know some of voice sent's coworkers have spoken out and been proud of matt for what i did and taking responsibility but beyond that i haven't really had much contact with the canzani family. bill: today is judgment day. he will likely enter a plea today. i don't know if the sentence is today or not. is it? >> no. the sentencing will be 30 days from now. the court will conduct a psi a presentence investigation before -- bill: what -- you believe he will serve time. the prosecution will try to hit him with the maximum which could be eight years in prison. >> sure. you know, he never said that he didn't do this. a man lost his life. so matthew would agree he deserves to serve time. however, i think these actions that he has taken thus far speak
volumes to his character. i have never had a client come forward prior to even being charged with a crime and take the responsibility that matthew has. i think a sentencing judge should take that into consideration. bill: we'll see what the judge says. >> a lot of time we get cases like these people are fighting them tooth and nail, going through motion practice and ultimately trial. that is a stressful process for the victims and matthew's avoided all that by releasing this confession. bill: we're about to see what the judge says. george is the attorney for matthew cordle in court today. columbus, ohio, franklin county. thank you, sir. we reached out to the family of the they believe what the video is doing making cordle, the 22-year-old accused, out to be a hero. that attorney has known apparently his family for a number about years. he says it speaks to his character. we'll reach out to the family hope to have them on tomorrow and tell us what they feel about what they're watching. >> i think it's a powerful message. i understand what they're saying, in a weird way it sort
of glamourizing this guilty party in this story. he did come forward before he was charged. when it came on last night, it was played on o'reilly last night, i stopped the kids in the room, doing homework, watch this young man. and learn from what happened to him. there is no way he is not going to do serious time for this crime. he may be hoping that this mitigates his sentence to certain extent. i do think it's a very powerful message to young people out there. i think it does serve some good. bill: good enough to get a million hits online. hemmer@foxnews online is email. @billhemmer on twitter. bya, because you asked. we'll reach out to the family tomorrow. what is next, mart? martha: as you know president obama is set to address the nation tonight. so given what happened in the last 24 hours, what is he going to say to the american people? "special report"'s bret baier joins us with a preview. bill: also firefighters defending one of the most prized national parks, facing down another monster fire.
this one racing towards scores of homes. we are live near the fire line where the temperatures are hot yet again today. love, warmth. here, try this. mm, ok! ching! i like the fact that there's lots of different tastes going on. mmmm! breakfast i'm very impressed. this is a great cereal! honey bunches of oats. i hear you crunching.
bill: dennis rodman spending some time with his favorite north korean dictator over the weekend. he is home from his second trip hanging out with kim jong-un. it is beautiful in pongyang this time of year they say. he will return to help coach the north korean olympic team and relationship is getting stronger with every visit. oh joy. >> he is my friend. if you hate my guts, hate my guts but he is my friend. he is a very good guy. and that is very seriously. he has to do his job but he is a very good guy. i wasn't going over there to try to rescue somebody. i'm trying to do open doors, open doors. when the doors are open, maybe,
maybe, maybe, those things will be different. bill: that is basketball diplomacy for you. next up for rodman, the united nations. the rescue comment was about american kenneth bey. he is mission terri in north korean labor camp held there on charges of espionage. martha: out west where several new wildfires are sparking in the golden state, the clover fire is some 200 miles north of sacramento. the fire reportedly spreading so fast that people had only minutes to get out of their homes. claudia cowan joins us live from san francisco. claudia, what's the latest? >> reporter: yeah a number about fires burning here in california. let's start with the clover fire burning up in shasta county. it has scorched 7400-acres so far and threatens about 350 structures. it is being fueled by temperatures up in 90s and very dry vegetation. there is a long-range of
spotting going on up there which means the fire is likely to grow. some 300 firefighters are battling this blaze. another 6 hupp will join the firefight today along with 10 helicopters and six air tankers. meantime crews continue to battle the huge wildfire burning in contra costa county on mount diablo, some 45 miles east of san francisco. fire officials say the morgan fire is no longer growing inin size. no homes were lost and cruise have it 45% contained. the morgan fire has consumed 3200-acres, and smoke is visible for miles. listen. >> all different color smokes. black whirlwinds going up hundreds of feet. the flames reach up to 50 feet. >> reporter: martha, this fire broke out on sunday. the cause remains under investigation. martha: and claudia, we're learning more about just how much that huge fire near yosemite is costing. >> reporter: yeah. quite a lot of money. we're talking about the rim fire. it is still just 80% contained.
crews hope to have that fire fully surround, hopefully by the end of next week. now we have learned the cost to fight the rim fire has reached $100 million. "the los angeles times" reports the cost rose as crews struggled in hot and very dry conditions. and more than 3,000 firefighters are still out there battling this rim fire. martha. martha: incredible. claudia, thank you very much. bill: so what is next in washington? speaker john boehner, house republicans, will speak on the hill any moment now. what will they say about the stunning developments surrounding syria? we'll find out. martha: we'll look for that. plus bill o'reilly sounds off on the syria situation. why he says america doesn't have the strength to deal with assad. >> the sad truth is, we can not do it any longer. the usa is too weak and it pains me to say that. it's too weak to even take care of a cheap thug like assad.
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martha: we are waiting to hear from house speaker john boehner right now. he's expected to weigh in on the huge turn of events on the issue of syria. this as president obama makes a trip to capitol hill as well. he will sit down with democrats and republicans before the big speech tonight where opposition, according to the polls, to a military strike continues to mount this morning. the president will address the nation, prime time speech 9:00. that speech no doubt involving at this moment -- evolving at this moment given the emergence to have so-called russia plan that started to bubble through yesterday morning. welcome to a brand new hour of "america's newsroom," i'm martha maccallum. bill: i'm bill hemmer. senator majority leader ari reed delayed -- harry reid delayed a vote on potential military
action, at least for now. bret baier standing by in washington, but we begin with doug mckelway on capitol hill. the dynamic was certainly changed late yesterday, doug. good morning. >> reporter: morning, bill. yeah, that's very, very true, and it should be moving fast and furiously today on the hill. they should be galing in momentary -- gaveling in momentarily. harry reid will likely address this russian proposal to be followed by remarks by minority leader mitch mcconnell who will make his first remarks potentially since the president sought congressional authorization for a limited strike. we're hearing some skepticism about this russian proposal. first of all, first and foremost, how do you insert independent international monitors into the midst of a raging war especially when president bashar al assad has used these weapons effectively. here's senator john mccain.
>> i am very, very skeptical about whether it will succeed or not, because be assad is using those weapons in order to maintain his -- >> reporter: he'd like to see an independent international body such as the chemical weapons convention. here's senator manchin. >> we have to reach out to the international community. the chemical weapons commission has 191 countries that are co-signers. so why not use that force of international community to put the pressure on? don't just let russia or count on russia taking the lead. >> reporter: a real potential wrench in the works is that one of the leaders of the syrian opposition has come out against this proposal, a spokesman for the syria national congress coalition, i should say, and said that this would simply embolden the regime even further. bill? bill: it doesn't look like he was the votes anyway, right?
it appears the president was making very few gains be it on the senate side or on the house side for the support for a strike, doug. >> reporter: yeah. and, you know, one of the real indications of that, bill, is this meeting at the white house yesterday of the congressional black caucus. this is, perhaps, the president's single most loyal constituency meeting with susan rice at the white house yesterday. there's no indication that they came away from that meeting changing their minds at all. they still, as a group, largely remain opposed to any u.s. military action in syria with. so the bottom line here, bill, is that president putin is sitting in the driver's seat right now, not president obama. bill: thank you, doug. talk to you a bit later. martha: meanwhile, we're hearing president obama will still push for the approval of military strikes during the prime time address tonight despite growing opposition from members in congress to this. but yesterday as word of the proposal that would allow syria's regime to turn over their chemical weapons started
to spread across washington, several members of the obama administration were still sort of on the other page. they were very skeptical and dismissive of the possibility of diplomacy. >> president obama has consistently demonstrated his commitment to multilateral diplomacy. he would much prefer the backing of the united nations security council to uphold the international ban against the u.s. of chemical weapons whether in the form of sanctions, accountability or authorizing the use of force. but let's be realistic, it's just not going to happen now. martha: not going to happen now, said susan rice, at the moment that it started to, the ground was shift, and it was starting to happen. bret baier joins me now, anchor of "13erb8 report." the message was being sent very forcefully yesterday by so many individuals. we watched susan rice, we heard
from samantha power, we heard from the state department, all basically saying, look, that door has closed. john kerry said that door has closed, all while it was opening. >> reporter: it's almost a case of whiplash here in washington, martha, as the past 24 hours things have changed dramatically. you're right, why isn't this the u.s. proposal to solve the syria chemical weapons deal? it is the russian proposal. why didn't u.s. ambassador to the united nations samantha power take to the united nations security council a proposal exactly like this and steer the way? why didn't, if the president as he said to to chris wallace and five other anchors talked with vladimir putin about this at the g20 conference and that this idea is a continuation of that conversation, why hasn't that even come up? and all of these discussions as
they're getting ready to ask lawmakers to cast this vote still, and many of them are face constituents 80/20 against this action. it's really remarkable, the past 24 hours. martha: it's stunning, and it's now, you know, you look at wires that are coming through, it's being called the kerry/lavrov plan. when john kerry raised this issue himself the other day and basically said, you know, the question -- as i remember it, bret -- was, you know, are there any circumstances secretary of state under which we are not going to do this military strike? and he sort of went, well, you know, it was sort of a when pigs fly kind of answer, i mean, sure. i guess if they just turned overral their chemical -- all their chemical weapons in one week, but that's not going to happen. and now look at the twist on that. >> yeah. the the last line of kerry's answer was he's not going to do that and, obviously, that can't
happen. obviously, it's happening now. it's an amazing turn of events. several people i've talked to said this was all part of a grand scheme and that rollout was really a way that the administration could orchestrate this, and the russians could steer the syrians and all this kind of spin behind the scenes. it's just tough to stomach all of that watching how it transpired and how much power russia is now given on the world stage of steering this diplomatic effort. martha: when you consider the fact that you have president obama who came into office to, as he has said, to get us out of wars, he was preaching that there should be diplomacy. we need to sit down and talk with these strong-arm dictators around the world, and he said, yes, i would sit down and talk with them. so then what do you have today? you got president obama talking about military strikes and apparently going to still push that line strongly tonight at least in terms of what we're hearing so far, and you have vladimir putin bringing people together and saying let's sit down with assad and talk?
that's a stunning reality. >> you have many democrats up on capitol hill, martha, who are now saying that this message has been muddled from the very beginning. is it a strong, robust strike, or is it unbelievably small? is it that all diplomatic efforts have been exhausted and this is the end of this, or are we open to every single thing including this russian proposal? let alone the skepticism about the russian proposal or be you want to call it the kerry/lavrov proposal. because in a peaceful country, this would be a heavy lift to get all of these chemical weapons deposed and all of these things. now you're talking about in the middle of a civil war. it's a big deal. martha: and we've got the rebels who are very concerned, and people on the ground there who may feel that they're sort of being left out of this picture if they don't get the kind of assurances and see the actual movement of these kind of weapons on the ground and it being enforced which is, as you
say, you know, a very heavy lift. >> yeah. and what happens? artillery shells start firing when we, this deal goes through? i mean, does the killing that assad has been doing over the past month continue with impunity just after this all gets ironed out? martha: bret, thank you. big, big questions, and the big speech tonight regardless, and you'll be watching it, and we'll be watching you cover it for us tonight. thank you so much, bret. see you later. bill: two things to keep an eye on, the house armed services committee just convening a hearing on syria. secretary kerry will be in that hearing room, and you have to think the first question is what was the answer all about yesterday? so we're watching that for you. we'ral watching another room on the hill -- also watching another room on the hill. john boehner will be in front of that microphone in a matter of moments, and we'll see what he says today given all the back and forth on story. so both those things on our agenda minutes away. martha: and all of this sort of preparation for the speech tonight, the president's prime
time address. as we said, bret baier will anchor our coverage at 8:55 eastern tonight. shepherd smith on the big fox network, and that gets underway at nine as well. bill: new video shows rebels and government forces fighting it out in a northern syrian city and near a christian town which al-qaeda-linked rebels captured about a week ago. leland vittert on that story in jerusalem. what's the situation in this christian village, leland? >> reporter: right now not very good, bill, for the christians who are left. the village is 3300 christians there, home to two of the oldest monasteries inside of syria. the rebels have fully overrun that village, are in control of it. there are now reports that some of the christians who remained in the village were threatened with beheadings if they did not convert to islam. at the same time, the rebels are now threatening on videotape to blow up some of the churches there. bill? bill: leland, thank you.
apologize for the interruption, secretary of state john kerry on the hill, house armed services committee. here we go. >> this particular issue. so this is good. it's good that we're here, and we look forward to the conversation. and as we convene at this hearing, it is no exaggeration at all to say to you that the world is watching. of and they're watching not just to see what we decide, they're watching to see how we did -- how we decide it and whether or not we have the ability at critical time when so much is on the line in so many parts of the world as challenges to governance writ large. it's important that we show the world that we actually do have ability to, hopefully, speak with one voice. and we believe that that can make a difference. needless to say, this is one of the most important decisions that any member of congress
makes during the course of their service. and we all want to make sure we leave plenty of time here for a discussion. obviously, this is a very large committee, and so we'll try to summarize in these comments and give the opportunity for the q&a. but i just want to open with a few comments about questions i'm hearing from many of your colleagues and, obviously, from the american people and what we read in the news. first, people ask me and they ask you, i know, why we are choosing to have a debate on syria at a time when there's so much that we need to be doing here at home, and we all know what that agenda is. let me assure you, the president and the united states didn't wake up one day and just kind of flippantly say let's go take military action if syria. in syria.
he didn't choose. we didn't choose this. we're here today because bashar al assad, a dictator who has chosen to meet the requests for reform this his country with bullets and bombs and napalm and gas, because he made a decision to use the world's most heinous weapons to murder more than, in one instance, more than 1400 innocent people including more than 400 children. he and his regime made a choice. and president obama believes and all of us at this table believe that that we have no choice but to respond. now, to those who doubt whether assad's actions have to have consequences, remember that our inaction absolutely is
guaranteed to bring worse consequences. you, every one of you here, we, all of us, america will face this if not today, somewhere down the line when the permissiveness of not acting now gives assad license to go do what he wants. and threaten israel, threaten jordan, threaten lebanon, create greater instability in a region already wracked by instability, where stability is one of the greatest priorities of our foreign policy and of our national security interests. and that brings me to the second question that i've heard lately which is sort of what's really at stake here. you know, does this really affect us? i met earlier today with steve chabot and asked what you're hearing. i know what you're all hearing. the instant reaction of a lot of
americans anywhere in our country is, whoa, we don't want to go to war again. we don't want to go to iraq, afghanistan, we've seen how those turned out. i get it, and i'll speak b to that in a minute. what i want to make clear at the outset is that what assad has done directly affects america's security. america's security. we have a huge national interest in containing all weapons of mass destruction. and the use of gas is a weapon of mass destruction. allowing those weapons to be used with impunity would be an enormous chink in our armor that we have built up over years against proliferation. finish think about it. our own troops benefit from that prohibition against chemical weapons. i mentioned yesterday in the briefing, many of you were there and some of you i notice from
decorations otherwise, i know many of you have served in the military. some of you still in the reserves. and you know the training that we used to go through when you're, you know, learning. and i went to chemical nuclear biological warfare school, and i remember going in a room with a gas mask, and they make you take it off, and you see how long you can do can it, and it ain't for long. those weapons have been outlawed. and our troops in all of the wars we've fought since world war i have never been subjected to it because we stand up for that prohibition. there's a reason for that. if we don't answer assad today, we willer remember rabblely damage a century-old starred that has protected american troops in war. so to every one of your constituents if they were to say to you why'd you vote for this even though we said we don't want to go to war? because you want to protect american troops, because you want to protect america's
prohibition and the world's prohibition against these weapons. the stability of this region is also if our direct security -- is also in our direct security interest. our allies, israel, jordan and turkey are all of them just a strong wind away from being injured themselves or potentially from the purposeful attack. failure to act now will make in this already-volatile neighborhood even more combustible than it almost certainly paved the way for a more serious challenge in the future. and you can just ask our friends in israel or elsewhere. in israel they can't get enough gas masks. and there's a reason that the prime minister has said this matters, this decision matters. it's called iran. iran looms outs there with its potential, with its nuclear program and the challenge we have been facing. and that moment is coming closer in terms of a decision.
they're watching what we do here. they're watching what you do and whether or not the this means something. if we choose not to act, we will be sending a message to iran of american ambivalence, american weakness. it will raise a question -- i've heard this question. as secretary of state as i meet with people and they ask about sort of our long-term interests in the future with respect to iran, they've asked me many times do you really mean what you say? are you really going to do something? they ask whether or not the united states is committed, and they ask us also if the president cuts a deal, will the congress up? can he deliver? this is all integrated. i am, i have no many doubt. i talked to prime minister netanyahu yesterday. israel does not want to be in
the middle of this, but we know their security is at risk and the region is at risk. i also want to remind you, you have already spoken to this. your word is on the line too. you passed the syria accountability act, and that act clearly states that syria's chemical weapons threaten the security of the middle east. that's in plain writing. it's in the act. you voted for it. we've already decided these chemical weapons are important to the security of our nation. i quote: the national security interests of the united states are, the national security interests of the united states are at risk with weapons of -- the chemical weapons of syria. the fourth question i've been asked a lot of times is why diplomacy isn't changing this dynamic. isn't there some alternative that could avoid this, and i want to emphasize on behalf of
president obama, president obama's first priority throughout this process has been and is diplomacy. diplomacy is our first resort. and we have brought this issue to the united nations security council on many occasions. we have sent direct messages to syria, and we've had serious allies -- syria's allies bring them direct messages. don't do this. don't use these weapons. all, to date, to no a avail. in the last three years russia and china have vetoed three security council resolutions condemning the regime for inciting violence or resolutions that simply probe mote a political solution -- promote a political solution to the dialogue, to the conflict. russia has even blocked press releases -- press releases -- that do nothing more than express humanitarian concern for what is happening in syria or
merely condemn the generic use of chemical weapons. not even assigning blame, they have blocked them. we've brought these concerns to the united nations, making the case to the members of the security council that protecting civilians, prohibiting the use of chemical weapons and promoting peace and security are in our shared interests, and those general statements have been blocked. it is a why the president -- that is why the president directed me to work with the russians and the region's players to get a geneva ii peace negotiation underway. and the end to the conflict in syria we all emphasize today is a political solution. none of us are coming to you today asking for long-term military -- i mean, some people think we ought to be, but we don't believe there is any military solution to what is happening in syria.
but make no mistake, no political solution will ever be achievable as long as assad believes he can just gas his way out of this predicament. and we are, without question, building the coalition of support for this now. 31 countries have signed on to the g20 statement which is a powerful one endorsing the united states efforts to hold assad accountable for what he is doing. turkey, saudi arabia, qatar, france and many others are committed to joining with us in any action. we're mow in the double digits -- now in the double digits with respect to countries that are actually prepared to take action should they be needed, were they capable of it. more than 25, i mentioned 31 nations signing on to the g12 statement. but our diplomatic hand, my former colleagues, our
diplomatic hand only becomes stronger be the other countries know -- if other countries know that america is speaking with a strong voice here, with one voice. and if we're stronger as a united nation around this purpose. in order to speak with that voice, we need you, the congress. that's what the president did. many of you said, please, bring this to congress. the president's done that. and he's bringing it to congress with confidence that the congress will want to join in an effort in order to uphold the word of the united states of america. not just a president, but the united states of america with respect to these weapons of mass destruction. now, i want to be crystal clear about something else. some people want to do more in syria. some people are leery about doing anything at all. but one goal we ought to all be able to agree on is that chemical weapons cannot be under the control of a man so craven
that he has repeatedly used those chemical weapons against his fellow syrians with the horrific results that all of us have been able to see. yesterday we challenged the regime to turn them over to secure control of international community so that they could be destroyed. and that, of course, would be the ultimate way to degrade and tier the assad's -- deter assad's arsenal, and it is the ideal weapon, ideal way to take this weapon away from the him. assad's chief benefactor, the russians, have responded by saying that they would come up with a proposal to do exactly that, and we have made it clear to them, i have in several conversations with foreign myster lavrov that this cannot be a process of delay, this cannot with a process of avoidance. it has to be real, measurable, tangible, and it is exceedingly difficult. i want everybody here to know to
fulfill those conditions. but we're waiting for that proposal. but we're not waiting for long. president obama will take a hard look at it. but it has to be swift, it has to be real, it has to be verifiable. it cannot be a delaying tactic, and if the united nations security council seeks to be the vehicle to make it happen, that cannot be allowed to simply become a debating society. many countries, many of you in the congress from those who wanted military action to those who were skeptical of military action want to see if this idea could become a reality. but make no mistake, make no mistake about why this idea has any potential legs at all. and why it is that the russians have reached out to the syrians and why the syrians have initially suggested they might be interested.
a lot of people say that nothing focuses the mind like the prospect of a hanging. well, it's the credible threat of force that has been on the table for these last weeks that has for the first time brought this regime to even acknowledge that they have a chemical weapons arsenal. and it is the threat of in of of this force that has motivated others to even talk about a real and credible international action that might have an impact. so how do you maintain that pressure? we have to continue to show syria, russia and the world that we are not going to fall for stalling tactics. if the challenge we laid down is going to have the potential to become a real proposal, it is only because of the threat of force that we are discussing today, and that threat is more compelling if congress stands
with the commander in chief. finally, let me just correct t a common misperception. in my conversation with steve earlier today he mentioned this, i've heard it. i've talked with many of you, you've told me you hear it. the instant reaction of a lot of americans -- and i am completely sympathetic to it, i understand i want, i know where it comes from, i only stopped sitting where you sit a few months ago. i know exactly what the feelings are. people don't want another iraq. none of us do. we don't want afghanistan. but, mr. chairman, with all due respect, we can't make this decision baylesed solely on the budget. we can't make this decision based solely on our wishes. on our feeling that we know we've been through the wringer for a while. we're the united states of america, and people look to us. they look to us for the meaning
of our word, and they look to us for our values, in fact, being followed up by the imprint of action where that is necessary. we are not talking about america going to war. president obama is not asking for a declaration of war. we are not going to war. there will be no american boots on the ground. let me repeat, no american boots will be on the ground. what we're talking about is a targeted, limited but consequential action that will reinforce the prohibition against chemical weapons. and general dempsey and secretary hagel will tell you how we can achieve that. and their confidence in our ability to achieve that. we're talking about an action that will degrade assad's capacity to use these weapons and to insure that they do not
proliferate. and with this authorization the president is asking for the power to make sure that the united states of america means what we say. mr. chairman, mr. ranking member and members of this committee, i can say to you with absolute confidence the risk of not acting is much greater than the risk of acting. we fail to act, assad will believe that he has license to gas his open people again, and that license will turn prohibited weapons into tactical weapons. general dempsey can tell you about this. it would make, it would take an exception, a purposeful exception that has been in force since 1925 and make it the rule today. it would undermine our standing, degrade america's security and
our credibility and erode our strength in the world. be in a world of terrorists and extremists, we would choose to ignore those risks at our peril. we cannot afford to have chemical weapons transformed into the new, convenient weapon, the ied, the car bomb, the weapon of everyday use in this world. neither our country, nor our conscience can bear the costs of inaction, and that's why we've come before you at the instruction of the president to ask you to join us in this effort. secretary hagel. >> mr. chairman, ranking member knit and members of the committee -- ranking member smith and members of the committee, the department of defense has a responsibility to protect the national security interests of the united states. and general dempsey and i take that responsibility very seriously. that's why i strongly support president obama's decision to
respond to the assad regime's chemical weapons attack on its own people. a large scale and heinous sarin gas assault on innocent civilians including women and children. i also wholeheartedly support the president's decision to seek congressional authorization for the use of force in syria. and i believe secretary kerry outlined those reasons very clearly. the president has made clear that it is in our country's national security interests to do, to degrade assad's chemical weapons capabilities capabilitir him from using them again. as secretary kerry mentioned, yesterday we outlined a way to accomplish this objective and avert military action. it would require the assad regime to swiftly turn its chemical weapons arsenal over to international control so it can be destroyed forever.
as president obama noted in a verifiable manner. all of us are hopeful that this option might be a real solution to this crisis. yet we must be very clear-eyed and insure it is not a stalling tactic by syria and its russian patrons. and for this diplomatic option to have a chance at succeeding, the threat of a u.s. military action, the credible, real threat of u.s. military action must continue as we are talking today. and will continue to talk and discuss throughout the week. it was the president's determination to hold assad accountable. and the fact that he put military action on the table that enabled this new diplomatic track to maybe gain some momentum and credibility. the support of congress for holding assad accountable will give even more energy and more
urgency to these efforts. so congress has a responsibility to continue this important be debate on authorizing the use of force against the syrian regime. be as each of us knows, committing our country to using military force is the most difficult decision leaders will make. all of those who are privileged to serve our nation have a responsibility be to ask the tough questions before that commitment is made. we must be able to assure the american people that their leaders are acting according to u.s. national interests with well-defined military objectives and with an understanding of the risks and the consequences involved. the president be is an entire national -- has an entire national security team ask those difficult questions before we concluded the united states should take action against syrian regime targets. i want to address briefly how we reached this decision by
clarifying the u.s. interests at stake here today and in the future. our military objectives and the risks of not acting at this critical juncture. as president obama has said, the use of chemical weapons in syria is not only an assault on humanity, it is a serious threat to america's national security interests and those of our closest allies. the syrian regime's actions risk eroding the longstanding international norm against the use of chemical weapons. a norm that as helped protect the united states homeland and american forces operating across the globe from these terrible weapons. the weakening of this norm has grave consequences for our troops, our country's future security and for global stability. these weapons are profoundly destabilizing and have rightfully been rejected by the international community.
syria's use of chemical weapons also threatens our friends and partners along it borders including israel and jordan, turkey, lebanon and iraq. it increases -- bill: political whiplash for the past 24 hours, and it continues yet again today. secretary kerry at the outset said he's working for a political solution and then went on to say without question they're building international support for action against assad and his regime this damascus. with regard to this russian plan that could have been john kerry's plan but, frankly, we don't know whose plan it was right now because we're waiting for one vital question here: why did he make the comment he made yesterday in london that has led us potentially to this point? bret baier back with us, the host, anchor of "special report." what kerry said is we cannot wait for this russian plan for too long, but you wonder if you kick the thing to the russians, and you get them negotiating with assad, then it comes to the
united nations in new york, and this is like iraq in 1995 all over again. >> oh, sure, bill. i mean, what you heard from secretary kerry there was a continued press to congress to vote for this authorization with the new element of we get that there's this proposal out there. we're going to wait for it but not wait too long. you keep on debating this authorization, give it to us, and that'll keep the pressure on the russians and the syrians. basically, was the message. and i think there are people wondering that question that you ask, how did this all develop, why did it come out the way it did? and now that we are where we are, what does it mean on the ground in syria? because if you think aboutup weapons inspection -- u.n. weapons inspection teams on the ground just after the august 21st use of chemical weapons, that u.n. inspection team came u remember, and was ambushed.
so to be able to go to the largest chemical weapons supply in the world, many experts say, and secure it and destroy it would be a big, big task. bill: indeed, it would. now, listen, i'm waiting for this question because i want to hear how secretary kerry answers it, and when it comes up, i would assume it'll be question number one on that docket inside of that hearing. we'll take our viewers back in. do you understand through your sources why kerry responded the way he did yesterday? if assad gives up his chemical weapon, that's his way out? >> we don't know definitively. we've heard different speculation from different government officials, and i'm -- the spin, i'll be honest, is that this was all part of some grand scheme, that it was dual track and that this, that the kerry meant in that presser to say what he said, how he said it so that the russians would take the lead. it's hard to believe that that's how they wanted it to roll out. it really is, bill, because now
you empower the russians. they are leading the way, and at the end of kerry's statement he says assad's not going to do that, and it can't happen. obviously, it can't happen. bill: well, while that hearing is ongoing, the speaker of the house, john boehner, was talking about this as well. here is how he characterized where we are now. >> well, clearly members tend to reflect their constituents. the american people have not been supportive, he's not made the sale to the american people. that's why i think tonight so important. bill: he has not made the sale. i mean, that directly reflects the polling that we've done and others have done that suggest, well, you know, the majority across the boards do not support a military strike. in addition, you have a democratic president who could force the hand of liberal democrats in congress to make a vote on a strike in another country. and they don't want that. >> not only that, but it might
not ever be a strike. this is a vote to authorize a strike that may never happen because the diplomatic track, the administration is now really grasping onto this and going forward with it. and all of them saying they're very hopeful but skeptical. so here you're going to press if you're the president. you're pressing liberal democrats in your caucus to vote for authorization. some of them facing constituents 80/20 against. you're going to vote for authorization, and it may never happen. it's a tough vote for a lot of these members. bill: yeah. and we'll see whether or not that happens in the end. john kerry saying we will not fall for stalling tactics on chemical weapon withs. we will see now, we await his answer there. thank you, bret, bret baier in washington. more later tonight. martha: very interesting watching what secretary kerry had to say, and at one point he said there's no military solution to this, but we need the threat of a military strike in order to carry out a political solution. so we're going to untangle that
a bit when we talk to captain chuck nash coming up after this. and investing accounts on one page... before he could easily transfer funds between the two in real time... before he could even think about planning for his daughters' future... mike opened a merrill edge investment account and linked it to his bank of america bank account to help free up plenty of time for the here and now. that's the wonder of streamlined connections. that's merrill edge and bank of america.
ago. secretary of state john kerry as they continue to push for congress to support military strikes, but they say they're very much looking into this political solution that potentially came about yesterday, and he says that he approached the syrians and the russians and tried to pull this together. there's a lot of question about whether or not that's how all of that went down. let's bring in retired navy captain chuck nash. captain, welcome. good to have you here. >> thanks, martha. martha: what's your reaction to john kerry there? >> i think it's a terribly naive statement to say that the united states wants to commit an act of war against syria, which a military strike would be, and that we're not going to war because it discounts what the syrians will do in response. we don't know if we're going to war. that is up to the syrians to decide once we launch that strike. so that argument on the face of it is, is silly.
now, our plan might be we want to do something, quote, unbelievably small and, therefore, they won't react to it. but how do we know that? and oh, by the way, any casualties or deaths that result from that unbelievably small effort that's being done for something that's so important, it just -- the argument is circular, it doesn't make sense, and i think that's why not just do i have a problem understanding it, i think the broad is section of american people have an understanding problem with it which is why the poll results are running 10 to 1 against in calls to congress. and i think hard polling data is something like 70/30 against. martha: yeah. i know from what you have said, captain, that you've been very troubled by the approach here and the way this has been handled. we talked to major general bob scales the other day who wrote a scathing editorial in the post saying, basically, he feels the pentagon does not want this war
and they're embarrassed at the way it's been handled. we're watching this hearing as it continues now on capitol hill. and last night bill o'reilly had some very forceful comments about the way that he thinks all of this is reflecting on us as a nation. and i want to play that for for you and get your thoughts. >> okay. >> the world is too cowardly to take a stand. thus, the violence comets. and you can forget about the united nations. russia and china would veto any strong action against the villains of the world. why? because those countries are villainous, and that's the truth. so it is left to the united states and its allies to try to impose some sense of justice on the planet. and the sad truth is, we cannot do it any longer. the usa is too weak, and it pains me to say that. it's too weak to even take care of a cheap thug like assad. american public overwhelmingly against military action in
syria. we, the people, simply do not want to do it. martha: that raises a big question, captain nash, what do we stand for, and can we afford to be indecisive in any way when we speak as the remaining superpower in the world? or are we anymore? >> well, the problem is the confusion in the message. and i go back to it, martha. who wants to die for something unbelievably small? if it's this important, then deal with it with that relative importance. but to discount this thing and say nothing's going to happen, trust us on this, all we're going to do is shoot in some missiles, and it's going to be all over, i think people are smarter than that. they're looking at this, and the political class here in washington may be all wrapped up in this and willing to believe that, but when you have so small a group of people involved that
really understand the military and are paying attention to this and have discounted miley cyrus and "dancing with the stars" and really are paying attention to international affairs, they're scared, and they're scared because we're being dragged into something by people who do not have the trust of the american people. and i think that's the biggest problem, and that's the issue that the president more than any other has to overcome in that speech tonight. it's not about how we're going to do it, it's why we're going to do it. and what the ramifications of that are. and that we have the will to deal with the consequences of our own actions. martha: yeah. well put. and we'll be watching tonight. and the why is a huge question here that the president will attempt to address tonight and the american people will decide if they think that he's successful at that. there's buck mckeon as they continue to answer questions on the hill. captain nash, thank you very
much. bill: he has not made the sale, that's what john boehner said moments ago, and that is why tonight so important. diplomacy, considered always a better option to by the speaker, john boehner, as this hearing continues. we'll get a quick break here. in a moment, a republican lawmaker says his calls to the white house have simply not been answered. what has he heard since, and what does he think of the back and forth today? he's next. the day we rescued riley was a truly amazing day. he was a matted mess in a small cage. so that was our first task, was getting him to wellness. without angie's list, i don't know if we could have found all the services we needed for our riley. from contractors and doctors to dog sitters and landscapers, you can find it all on angie's list. we found riley at the shelter, and found everything he needed at angie's list. join today at angieslist.com
bill: all right, moments ago on the hill there was a lot of activity, a lot of headlines right now this is a hearing with secretary of state john kerry. john boehner was talking in another room saying that a lot of mistakes have been made. my next guest is a republican who supports striking syria. illinois congressman adam
kinzinger is with me now, and good morning to you. >> hey, good morning. bill: do you still support a strike after what is all so clear and mismanagement of the story? even if you look at the whiplash of the past 24 hours, where are you on that now? >> well, look,s with russians -- with the russians putting this proposal forward, we have an obligation to explore it. if we can disarm assad without having to do strikes, i'm supportive of that. but if we think this is a huge breakthrough, we're pool thing ourselves. finish fooling ourselves. the administration has got to put out timelines, if you accomplish those, you'll have another week to do these following things, and if you don't, we understand you're just doing a delay tactic. this is a huge deal for somebody to go in and take control of all his weapons stores. and if you think the russians who vetoed press releases are really huge all of a sudden they woke up and said, boy, we don't want chemical weapons with our
ally, assad, we're fooling ourselves. but we do have an obligation to see how this goes. bill: yeah, but you know striking assad, that's not what the majority favors. i think you're well aware of the polling on the screen. stay out, it's a civil war, 68% of the american people polled say that. i've got more here, using u.s. military force in syria. look at the right side, the column, there is a clear majority to degrade the capacity, send a message to iran, punish chemical weapons, help the anti-government rebels. they're all well over 50%. >> oh, yeah. look, i'm aware of this, and this is a result of a president that when he talks to the american people about what we need to do, he says on the one hand, but however. and so he's always trying to play, you know, everybody and make everybody feel good, and in the process he doesn't look like a commander in chief that knows what he's doing and has a real focus. but i think it's essential. america for decades has held that chemical weapons have no
place. since world war i we've never faced it on the battlefield. we basically threatened almost nuclear weapons if saddam hussein had used them, and then we put up a to-fly zone in the northern and southern part of iraq because we abhor the use of chemical weapons. now, if we let this slide, if they're not disarmed by this new russian proposal and we let this slide, we'll never be able to enforce this again in the future and america and the world will be far worse off -- bill: can you trust this administration to carry that out? i mean, you wonder who's rubbing the store. -- running the store. you're a republican early on who supported a strike on damascus, and you waited on an answer and a call back from the white house for eight days. >> right. bill: how do you explain that? >> i can't. look, for four and a half years this administration has had no relationship with congress. democrats will tell you the exact same thing behind closed doors. bill: they will? >> oh, they will. i've had a lot of them tell me even yesterday.
but you can't tell me that all of a sudden you need congress because you decided to bring something to them, and you're going to build relationships that haven't existed for four and a half years in a week. it's too late, too much, and you can't get it done. that's where this administration is very much struggling. but aside from that, we have to take a stand against the use of chemical weapons, and we have to tell assad and everybody around the globe that would consider doing in the use of chemical weapons is going to cost you far more than any benefit you're going to gain from it. bill bill understood. ad amend winding ger, thank you for your time. thank you, sir. martha? martha: so the a house committee launching a major information into who exactly the syrian rebels are. why some say the very people we're trying to help could pose a danger to the united states. be right back. ♪
just about two days. with up to 48 hours of battery life, it's the longest lasting 4g lte smartphone. the new droidmaxx by . when endurance matters. is before mike could see his banking and investing accounts on one page... before he could easily transfer funds between the two in real time... before he could even think about planning for his daughters' future... mike opened a merrill edge investment account and linked it to his bank of america bank account to help free up plenty of time for the here and now. that's the wonder of streamlined connections. that's merrill edge and bank of america. martha: we know the president likes to make changes in the speeches up to the last minute. and no doubt that speech is being worked on today given how much is shifting in this story. jon: you will be watching. i will be watching. beltway is hosting later
tonight. we hope you're watching as well. we'll see where we stand tomorrow at this time. we had no idea where we are today at this point yesterday. martha: see you 1:00 this afternoon. things started changing dramatically. tune in. bill: have a great day. see you tomorrow. jon: a fox news alert on the fast-breaking developments on the crisis in syria. right now the ap reporting that the president has agreed to a u.n. discussion of a diplomatic breakthrough that could avert a u.s. military strike in the middle east. this after the assad regime accept ad russian-brokered proposal to put syria's chemical weapons under international control. something that is much easier said than done. meanwhile the white house is forging ahead with its plan to convince congress to authorize a strike to punish bashar assad for gassing his own people. the president will still make a case for action in his address to the nation tonight. we go live to the white house in moments.