tv Fox News Sunday With Chris Wallace FOX News June 12, 2016 11:00am-12:01pm PDT
resolve to defend our people. i just finished a meeting with fbi director comey and my homeland security and national security advisers. the fbi is on the scene and leading the investigation in partnership with local law enforcement. i have directed that the full resources of the federal government be made available for this investigation. we are still learning all the facts. this is an open investigation. we have reached to definitive judgment on the precise motivations of the killer. the fbi is appropriately investigating this as an act of terrorism. i have directed that we must spare no effort to determine what, if any, inspiration or association this killer may have had with terrorist groups. what is clear is that he was a person filled with hatred. over the coming days we will uncover how and why this happened and we will go wherever the facts lead us. this morning i spoke with my
good friend orlando mayor buddy dyer and icon conveyed to him deepest condolences of the american people. this could be any of our communities. i said whatever help he and orlando need, they are going to get it. as a country, we will be there for the people of orlando today, tomorrow, and for all the days to come. we also express our profound gratitude to all the police and first responders who rushed to harm's way. their courage and professionalism saved lives and kept the carnage from being even worse. it's the kind of sacrifice our law enforcement professionals make every day for all of us and we can never thank them enough. this is an especially heartbreaking day for our friends, our fellow americans who are lesbian, gay, bisexual
or trans gender. the shooter targeted a nightclub where people came together to be with friends to dance, sing and to live. the place where they were attacked is more than a nightclub. it is a place of solidarity and empowerment where people have come together to raise awareness, to speak their minds, and to advocate for their civil rights. this is a sobering reminder that attacks on any american, regardless of race, ethnicity, religion, or sexual orientation is an attack on all of us and on the fundamental values of equality and dignity that define us as a country. no act of hate or terror will ever change who we are or the values that make us americans. today marks the most ked deadly shooting in american history. the shooter was armed with a
happenedg -- handgun and a powerful assault rifle. this is a further reminder of how easy it is for someone to get a weapon that lets them shoot people in a school or in a house of worship or a movie theater or in a nightclub. we have to decide if that's the kind of country we want to be. and to actively do nothing is a decision as well. in the coming hours and days, we'll learn about the victims of this tragedy. their names, their faces, who they were, the joy they brought to families and to friends and the difference they made in this world. say a prayer for them. say a prayer for their families. may god give them the strength to bear the unbearable and may he give us all the strength to be there for them and the strength and courage to change. we need to demonstrate that we
are defined more as a country by the way they lived their lives than by the hate of the man who took them from us. as we go together, we will draw inspiration from heroic and selfless acts. friends who helped friends, took care of each other and saved lives. in the face of hate and violence, we will love one another. we will not give in to fear or turn against each other. instead we will stand united as americans to protect our people and defend our nation and to take action against those who threaten us. may god bless the americans we lost this morning. may he comfort their families. may god continue to watch over this country that we love. thank you. >> president obama at the white house briefing room saying that this is being investigated by
the fbi as an act of terror. meeting with his national security team saying he's committed to putting the full resources of the federal government behind this investigation. he said there is no definitive judgment as to the official motivation to this shooter. the person, he said, was filled with hatred. he went on to say that he did get access to guns and raised again the question about how easy it is to get a weapon in america. there was no mention of islam or radical islam or, for that matter, terrorists striking the u.s., even though his fbi investigators tell fox news this particular shooter pledged allegiance to the leader of assist in the moments before the shooting began. the investigation is heading down that road. we will have continuing coverage on fox news channel throughout the day of all of the shooting developments. joining me now, chief
intelligence correspondent, sebastian gorka. jim, your thoughts? >> two salient things are the president didn't pass up the opportunity to say that guns are the problem. yet again he passed up the opportunity even to allude to the fact there might be some motivation from some branch of islam or islamist terrorism o y or jihadi thinking despite the fact the killer was shouting allah akbar. the facts don't seem to matter to this administration on this issue. >> is the author of the book "defeating jihad," when you listen to the president there your thoughts? >> disappointment. i am very disappointed as an
american. this is an exercise in disconnecting the dots about the threat to americans. he mentioned the word "hatred" maybe four times. did we talk about hatred when we were facing the nazis? did we talk about it when we faced the soviet union? no. this is about ideology, a global threat that wishes to see america destroys along with our allies. the fact he didn't mention the motivation, that it's not identifiable, of course it is identifiab identifiable. this man, we have the report that catherine discussed about pledging allegiance to al baghdadi, the head of assist. his motivation is a given. holy war against the infidel. i'm so disappointed. >> from the administration's point of view, they have always, always since the beginning been very cautious about getting to conclusions.
they are always, in their words they want to be crystal clear about what it is before coming out definitively. inside the administration and in experts we talked to, they are clear where this is headed. >> this is early stage. what jumped out at me is this is what i would call a tier 1 event. when you have the fbi director personal i will debriefing the president about an event that was six or seven hours earlier, this tells you it is on top of the pile in terms of being investigated as an act of terrorism. as we understand, one that was inspired by a foreign terrorist organization. that's number one. when you look at the issue, perhaps what the president said wasn't enough for some people. to me, he went much further than he has. >> that's my point. >> in identifying it as a terrorist act and saying we are going to follow the facts where they lead, from my experience
it's never black and white as to someone's motivation or the events that precipitated the attack. the data set we have already certainly points in one direction only which is an allegiance with isis and acting on behalf of a foreign terrorist organization. >> jim, what we see sometimes is inspired by isis, but not directed by the international organization in a direct communication. but inspired by, motivated by. maybe social media rantings or some other communication. >> well, inspired by and motivated by is plenty. i mean, the fact that isis might not be engaged in micro managing through social media or otherwise in one particular attack or was in one but not another. it's interesting and it may help us figure out how to get ahead of the problem but it's not the
main thing. the heart of the matter is that like dealing with the nazis. we have an attitude, an ideology that's overtaken a portion of one of the world's great religions. that makes it hard to fight. we are a first amendment country. we don't want to tell anyone their religion isn't something they should -- but the fanaticism out of the jihadis on this is something we have to regard the way we regarded fighting the nazis. >> some say this president has killed more terrorists than any other with a drone program overseas. he doesn't talk about it the same way others want it, but he's going after terrorists. >> sure. it's easy. a three-star general he treats it like the easy button. he doesn't have to think about the long-term victory. there's a bad guy.
i have my threat disposition matrix or the list of bad guys. let's kill this guy today. press the button and we'll win. it's not smart. if you kill one jihadi and 15 guys volunteer to replace him what have you created? it is a misunderstanding of the threat. the threat will be destroyed only if we under mine the ideology. absolutely right. it doesn't matter whether al baghdadi is sitting with a joystick somewhere directing attacks on america. it is irrelevant to the 50 dead people in the club. inspired by is more than enough, right? that's absolutely more than enough. it's the new terrorist threat. that's the nature of the threat. it's not command and control we have to uncover. it's the ideological sympathies best identified on social media and through human intelligence. >> catherine? >> what i would say about that is, you know, terrorism is defined as an act of violence to promote a political end.
>> or religious. >> or religious. in this particular case what concerns me is sort of the defining down of what terrorism is. is it only terrorism when it is directed by a group overseas when, in fact, whether it is directed and as my colleagues said, whether it's motivated by, it has the same result. so when you sort of move to more narrowly define what is terrorism, that's a dangerous road to go down. it is about an ideology and it is the new flavor going for individuals, small cells, and soft targets. >> we should point out and the basis here are 50 dead americans. an unbelievable day in orlando. peter has been covering it since the beginning. he's standing by where we expect another news conference from authorities there. peter, just the sense of that place and as the day has
developed, it has sunk in that 50 people lost their lives. that number could increase as many are still in critical condition. >> reporter: it's horrible here, brett. i just walked a few blocks away to pop in to grab a drink and as soon as you get past the police perimeter, there are people on their knees crying, praying. it's not just people from the neighborhood who are curious though there are some of those. it seems there are people very worried about friends and relatives in here. they don't know what to do because some of the bodies are still inside the nightclub. some of the bodies are at the hospital. they don't know who to talk to or where to go. the scene a block and a half away from pulse nightclub where it unfolded, where just about ten hours ago this alleged
terrorist was screaming in the streets, it's a sad scene here. you can sense the devastation. we are now learning a little bit more in the last few minutes about what this person was doing for work. we got something from g4s security about omar mateen -- >> one second, peter. we are going to take a live look at the white house. they are getting ready to lower the flag to half staff at the white house. we want to let everybody see that picture as a proclamation by the president to do that. i'm sorry to interrupt, peter. >> reporter: he had a license because he worked as a security guard. that company that he was working for, g 4 s said we are shocked and saddened by the tragic event at the orlando nightclub. we can confirm omar mateen was
employed with g4s since september 10, 2007. we are cooperating with all law enforcement authorities including the fbi as they conduct their investigation. our thoughts and prayers are with all of the friends, families and people affected by this unspeakable tragedy. a small. this person they already knew -- they already believed to have leanings toward radical islamic terror ideologies. and so now that we -- we do expect them for the first time to confirm the name on camera of this alleged terrorist. with that, we are hoping for some more details. it could be any minute. we are just watching over my shoulder to see. they could walk up at any time. >> that was stunning. you asked the question about the ties to islamic terrorism or possible ties. they said he did have leanings
toward that ideology was the answer that the agent gave at that moment. when you talked to authorities down there, what is their biggest concern? they seem to believe the threat for the area is nonexistent or there is not a connection to another. is that what you are hearing? >> reporter: that is what we are hearing. right now the big concern that we can sense is that in terms of the imminent threat it's not believed to exist right now. their concern is obviously going into the crime scene now and identifying that 50-plus victims of this crime because so far the only name we have heard of anybody killed last night is of the suspected terrorist. we don't know who the 50 people that's why families throughout the orlando area, throughout the central florida area really are so concerned right now.
they don't know if they can't get ahold of a loved one because they are dead inside this nightclub still that's not been completely cleared out or if they are hurt in a hospital or if their phone is dead. the confusion still has not eased ten hours later. but law enforcement authorities right now, their main concern is with identifying the remains of the victims and notifying the families about what may have happened. >> peter doocy live in orlando. we'll head back for the live news conference. dr. mark siegel, our chief medical correspondent and doctor at fox news, thank you for coming in. i want to talk about the amazing efforts under way in a trauma situation like this. you have at least 53 wounded. we are told there are still bodies inside the nightclub being processed and the investigation continues there. talk about the challenges for
authorities and specifically medical personnel. >> there is something called the golden hour which is a period of time you have to stabilize a patient. what do you do? first apply tourniquets, put compression where there is bleeding, elevate wounds, make sure there is an airway. emergency personnel have to literally put an airway into someone choking. once somebody is stabilized the next thing you do is get them to a hospital. luckily orlando regional medical center is the top trauma center in the entire central florida. it is a level 1 trauma center. what are they doing there? number one, they put the medical center on diversion, brett. they are not going to be taking any other incoming problems other than this. they will take as many wounded as they can. there was a waiving of privacy laws which is crucial to try to get information about the patients. the more we know about their
backgrounds, underlying medical problems the better you can work toward saving somebody. the assault rifle is a big deal here. assault weaponry discharges bullets at a rapid rate. they go deeper and fragment inside the body. it is hard to save somebody when they have been shot with an assault weapon. the handgun, those people usually survive. once they are in the hospital you look to see if there is a problem with a chest wound. you immediately put a chest tube in. you triage patients and those who have damage to extremities, bullets in arms and legs, you stabilize them but the most important ones are the ones that have bullet wounds to the chest and abdomen. they often have to go to the operating room. the key is stop the bleeding, give blood replacement. the cry is out for blood donation. the more type o negative blood the better. that's the universal donor. anyone can receive it. >> that's a good point.
we should make that case. if people are in the area, go to the blood banks. don't go to the hospitals. go to the blood banks and the red cross. they are making an urgent appeal, right, doctor, for that type of blood especially. >> absolutely. to give you an idea, there are only five liters of blood in the body. if you lose more than two you go into shock. your heart races, blood pressure goes down, you become unconscious. then it's a race against time. we put in large bore intravenous lines, try to replace the blood and try to stop the blood especially with multiple areas of bleeding. the liver and spleen are a problem because they can cause a lot of internal bleedings. six top surgeons were called in overnight. they are struggling against the clock. >> when you hear 53 wounded being treated in area hospitals and many critical this hour, you expect the death toll to
increase? >> yes. tragically, i expect the death toll to increase by a lot. our hopes and prayers are in orlando. all the medical personnel are trying to be calm. the calmer you are, the more systematic you are the better chance to save a life. >> we appreciate your time as always. that puts it into context. 50 lives lost, possibly more. attorney general loretta lynch is in china, headed back to the u.s. homeland security secretary jeh johnson was scheduled to travel to china. he cancelled the trip. you heard the president talk about his national security team. i'm back with catherine, jim and sebastian. catherine, your thoughts and how this administration moves to the next level. obviously we heard the president. there will be many who criticize
that they are wanting to hear more about the threat from islamic terrorism. he's mobilizing a lot of parts of the federal government. >> we just had him speak to the nation but what we are also seeing now is the evidence as mentioned before of a tier 1 event. you had the fbi director in the oval office briefing the president this morning. you now have the attorney general, homeland security secretary who had a trip to china on the calendar to discuss cyber security and whether china is living up to its pledge, not to attack u.s. government interests. they are now cancelling the trip, staying in the united states. all of that taken in whole tells you that this is a significant event. number two i would say despite what critics are saying about the president, in my mind this is one of the first times we have seen him describe an event so early as an act of terrorism, one inspired by a foreign terrorist group. and the fbi is in the lead on
this investigation down in florida already, brett. >> okay. let me interrupt you. coming over the wires right now the islamic state officially claiming responsibility for the orlando, florida, nightclub shooting according to to the news group they call it from the islamic state, amaq news agency. >> that's a very credible -- that's credible. >> you know, for some time there going against isis, we were sending out eight, ten, 12 sortis of aircraft a day. when we attacked the serbs because they were massacring people in 1999 we were sending hundreds a day. there was -- essentially in kosovo there is a bill clinton boulevard and bill clinton
place. he deserves it. he saved them from massacres with massive air power. we need to focus on where isis is and make them pay. >> i want to talk quickly about the gun element of the president's comments. he mentioned how easy it is to get hand osss on a weapon in ou country. this is a guy who was a security officer. he passed a screening. he had a weapons permit, statewide. >> yes. class g. >> class g. so he went through the cycle. >> he passed everything. he was authorized to carry a weapon in pursuant of his duties as a security officer. let's be clear. we could get a magic wand and the president could make all legally owned weapons disappear in america. jihadis will keep killing americans on u.s. soil. in one of the early issues of
"inspire" magazine, the al qaeda magazine there is a giant poster that says "use your f-150 to kill the infidel." they will kill us with whatever tools they need. pipe bombs are illegal in america. it is illegal to construct a pipe bomb. what did the tsarnaev brothers do in boston? did it stop them from building pipe bombs? it didn't. the idea that legislation or focusing on a tool, a weapon or an explosive is going to mitigate this threat or make it disappear, again, is fantasyland. it is about an enemy that has to be dealt with in situ in the middle east and here in america. >> it doesn't take the arguments of the gun control folks. when talking about the terrorist act it seems somewhat misplaced in the argument. we just heard from the 911 calls that he's pledging allegiance to the head of isis, this guy omar mateen, 29-year-old.
then we hear reports that he mentions and talks about the boston bombers, the tsarnaev brothers, an allegiance there. you were starting to add up ties and officially the islamic state claimed responsibility. it seems like it. >> it's a big data set already this early that goes toward an act of islamic extremism on its face connected to isis. in my experience i have not known the islamic state to take credit with the official news agency, the amaq news, for events they are not responsible for but have in some way directed. maybe in this case he was not directed. he was inspired by or motivated by the islamic state. we are early days into understanding what his communications were. the fbi will do a scrub of all of his electronic communications to see who he was in touch with,
especially in the two weeks before the attack. right? >> right. this is a very interesting point catherine raises. if you look at both isis and al qaeda they often wait a long time to take responsibility. >> this is extremely quick. >> look at 9/11. it took a long time. the idea that within hours isis's official media platform is accepting responsibility is very, very significant -- or it could be. >> it's always possible this may be the one event where isis takes responsibility for something because it's so big and it brings such street cred to the organization. in my experience we have not seen isis claim responsibility for attacks that they didn't have a connection to. >> the fact that the attorney general is coming back from china. the fact that the homeland security secretary is not going on a scheduled trip to china, some place that they have an
interest in going to continue communications with the chinese, how significant is that? >> i think it is quite significant. in a circumstance in which in a way isis is saying to us, "we want you to see how far we can push you before you take us seriously." "you are treating us like we were law enforcement problems, fine, keep doing that, we'll step up the pace and murder hundreds of americans instead of just dozens." "at some point you will notice us". >> i think that's going through isis minds. >> you agree? >> i do. and it has to look at what the administration will do. it cannot be business as usual. after last night it cannot be business as usual. just the more drone strikes, more special forces, detachments. this is a game-changer. what is the white house going to
do today, that's the burning question. >> people thought san bernardino was a game changer. it took a while to get to the declarative statement that it was inspired by isis. in fact, some people think they didn't fully get there in the public pronouncements. is this the game changer? >> it is certainly a game changer in terms of the numbers killed by what appears to be a lone individual. that's what we know at this point. not someone who is part of a broader network. but it takes me back to a central question. we may learn from the fbi at the news conference in florida. if our reporting is correct that he was known to the fbi as early as 2013 was he still on the radar as of last night or had he dropped off the radar had the case been closed as we saw with the elder tsarnaev brother in boston. that's one of the big questions this afternoon. also it raises the question of what level of surveillance are
americans really willing to accept and have the government essentially in their stuff to prevent the lone wolf. that's a very low threshold for people. >> inspired or directed. >> again, it doesn't -- >> the battle between privacy and national security is playing out time and again. panel, thank you so much for being here for extended coverage with the president's comments and all of the atrocity in orlando. shannon breem and leland continue here on fox news channel and for those across the country, thanks for tuning in. i'm brett baier in washington. thanks to its triple protections from leaks, odor and moisture. tena lets you be you ♪
that was the call from orlando police dispatch going out to police officers, telling them to take cover in what would be the worst mass shooting in u.s. history as it began to unfold in orlando overnight. as we wake up it is a nation now like those people there -- in shock. >> this is what we know so far. 50 dead. 53 others wounded, many of them critically. the gunman shot dead by a s.w.a.t. team member identified as omar mateen. law enforcement sources say he was heard shouting allahu akbar meaning god is great in arabic
while engaging with law enforcement. that's one report. we are awaiting the latest press conference in orlando. welcome to our live coverage as it continues in washington. >> this has become a sad sunday. we'll all remember it. live pictures now from orlando as we are awaiting a news conference, the third news conference from short authoriti orlando. we learn stunning details each time. >> we heard from the president moments ago. more than that coming up. authorities are continuing to investigate the deadly attack and why the suspected shooter, omar mateen, was motivated to open fire in the club. peter doocy is live and joins us with the latest. >> reporter: the investigation continues just a few minutes we saw a large mobile command unit from the atf arrive. it pulled up to the front of the pulse nightclub which advertises itself as orlando's premier gay nightclub.
just about the spot where the mobile investigative units are parked hours ago, ten and a half hours ago is where omar mateen parked his van and engaged with officers in some sort of firefight. he managed to then escape away into pulse nightclub where there were 320 people partying around 2:00 in the morning. many escaped. he held 30 or so hostages for three hours until a nine-man s.w.a.t. team decided to go in and rescue those hostages. they did. they managed to shoot and kill omar mateen. as soon as they had a chance to survey the scene they realized they were surrounded by people he had just killed, people he had just murdered with an ar-15-type rifle and a handgun. the reason it took so long to realize that there were as many
as 50 victims laying dead inside pulse nightclub here in a very busy part of orlando is because omar mateen also had some sort of a device and it concerns authorities enough they needed to take five and a half, six hours to send a bomb squad in and make sure everything was safe. then after that delay they were able to go in and start identifying bodies and start notifying families. we are learning a little bit more about the suspect. we know he is a muslim from about 90 miles away from here. he had been working since 2007 as a security guard. it is believed that's why he had access to guns and why he was probably -- why he was such a good shot. we are expecting a lot more details later on. something else remarkable about this incident as it has unfolded is the consistency from a variety of different officials
at different agencies and the way they are classifying this. at 7:00 this morning, in the 7:00 hour, i asked the fbi special agent in charge if there was a connection to radical islamic terrorism and he said that was their understanding that they had indications he had leanings toward radical islam terrorism. then we had senator bill nelson say the same thing. same from governor rick scott. we'll get more details at the next press conference as promised by the fbi. back to you in washington. >> peter, thank you. we'll go back to orlando as the press conference heats up for the latest information. in the meantime, a short time ago the president spoke from the white house about the events of this morning. we want to replay a little bit of what he had to say from the white house. >> i have directed that we must spare no effort to determine what, if any, inspiration or association this killer may have
had with terrorist groups. what is clear is that he was a person filled with hatred. some of the things the president didn't say. joining us doug smith formerly of the department of homeland security and an expert on national affairs, mr. rogan. first to you. it is a sad prophecy that you made yesterday. you talked about the fear of more attacks during ramadan. i said hopefully we don't have you back to talk about attacks and here we are today. >> yes, that was your closing statement yesterday. i think what we have seen is the final proof to that debate that's been going on across the country about the nature of the threat we face and how seriously we should respond to it in terms of concerted strategy. more specifically whether we have time or not and whether that urgency to confront this threat is imbued in our policies. i would say the urgency is not there and unless we get that
urgency we are going to continue to see atrocities like this in the united states, across europe and across the world indeed. >> we talk about how 9/11 changed everything in america in the sense that airport security changed, our stature toward terrorism changed. are we in another phase? is this a new 9/11? will we look back at today in orlando and say that's when the idea of a lone wolf mass shooter changed the face of america's security posture? >> i'm not sure. i think it's changed for some time. your colleague brett baier brought up a great point with privacy. that's the thing that will be the tipping point. how far are americans willing to go to have their cell phones looked at, social media looked at? it means in this particular case and i will emphasize this is a fast evolving stories with many facts still coming out. there was potentially history here. what i think we'll start to see is the average joe on the street
having more of a willingness to have their own personal things looked at. that's key. i disagree with the former dci you had on before. i think this is a challenging issue when you live in a free and open society like the united states. this administration has been working diligently and incredibly hard behind the scenes quietly, not trying to make headlines or looking for fanfare but trying to keep the public safe. what we see in orlando is what happens in a free and open society. it is a tragic, horrible scenario that my former colleagues at the fbi, the intelligence services will be joining together, be deconstructing what happened, looking for solutions to prevent it. we have to be cautious about not rushing to judgment and blaming and pointing fingers. we live against the backdrop of a free and open society. with that come the challenges of protecting all of us.
we all need to be part of that. that saying in new york city about see something, say something, everything comes into play on this. it comes down to the average american citizen understanding that it is a growing threat and that isis continues to evolve. they are not as dedicated to the large bang effects that the original al qaeda were. they want to instill fear. a random event in a club in orlando, a movie theater in the middle of the country to happen to really continue to scare and stop the american way of life. >> tom, we are getting threads of information, some confirmed, some not, about exactly what the suspected terrorist had done, the words he said, allegiances he may have made prior to the shooting. we have terror-linked groups trying to publicize it or accept responsibility. they want to be linked to it. whether there is a direct link or not, does it matter whether
it is terrorist directed or inspired the end result is the same. >> that's a good point and an important point because at a strategic lev strategic level going back to november of 2014 and what isil tried to do is say you can join the caliphate by coming to syria or iraq and receiving training and deploying back to europe. or you can join the ranks in iraq and syria so there is an active directed, controlled operational side which, for example, european counterterrorism forces are concerned about. at the same time with the black banner, the isil flag, the interpretation of islam, every time isil has a success around the world they gain more fealty. a good example is boko haram, pakistan and that generates more recruits in the pool. every time there is an attack it gives people on the periphery of
society a belief that they can become part of a cause that's moral and ordained and be part of a global war. unless you puncture the flag, say the flag is simply a magnet for a hellfire missile, ordained purity for someone very sick, i disagree with doug when he says the administration has taken it seriously enough. they haven't. you talk to the europeans whether they think it is taken seriously enough and the answer is no. >> i will give you a chance to respond, doug. as a former dhs official how do you get your hands around whether this person had a direct link to anyone involved with isis, whether he was troubled, whether he had his own radical beliefs, if he acts and has given allegiance to isis in any way how in the world do you center in on each of the people? we knew the fbi at some point was in contact with him or looking into him. how do you get your arms around
this? >> that's the challenge. there are 300 million plus people in the united states. the fbi, department of homeland security, all of the agencies are constantly screening and looking and trying to find suspects like this. that's the great challenge. how do you identify that one? isis is very, very clever. they have mastered the p.r. game. when they launched "inspire" magazine almost ten years ago, they were clever. they decentralized command and how to -- pushed threat out into communities from france, the united states, et cetera. that's been their win. we saw this in paris, san bernardino. but we also saw this with major hassan at ft. hood. it is more difficult to stop an individual. particularly when all they have to do is pick up a gun, drive the truck into a crowded plaza.
>> we are going to orlando, florida. bill nelson. >> -- saying they are responsible. that has not been confirmed. it's coming over the wires right now. we will find out more and more as the fbi gives you their analysis. st. lucie county now, they have asked as i said earlier in an appeal to people, to anybody in the community that knows the shooter for them to please come forward so that we can piece this together. if it turns out that he's a lone wolf, as you know, it is very difficult to stop a lone wolf because it is hard to get information ahead of time.
but in this case, if we are getting those kind of statements from the news agency of the islamic state, we'll have to see what those connections are once we get the details. so i wanted to bring you up to date. i told you that i would keep you informed since i spoke this morning. momentarily, the fbi will be here to give you an update. >> that was senator bill nelson. we are waiting for the fbi as well as the orlando police to come in and give us a little bit more information on exactly what happened there over the critical five hours from 2:00 a.m. to 7:00 a.m. as the news broke about the shooting. joining us now on the phone steve pommerantz. good to speak with you. wish it were under better circumstances. give us an idea of what's going
on. you think of the first shots fired two hours and 44 minutes ago or so. what's happened in the past 12, 13 hours and what's happening with the fbi for the next 12 hours? >> what the fbi is doing now is launching what's going to be an extended massive investigation. there is not one thing going on. it is a litany of things going on simultaneously. obviously on the scene. evidence collection. some of this is perishable, has to be done immediately. securing the physical evidence, getting started on the analysis. witness interviews, making sure you get to people, identify the witnesses, get to them as quickly as you can while their recollections are fresh and have a mechanism based on what they tell you to follow up, go where the investigation lead use logically. that's on the one hand. on the other hand, it's
simultaneous, not sequential. you have to start scrubbing your intelligence. >> i just want to get in a question. we have only about 90 seconds left. help us understand. we are hearing from so many law enforcement sources the shooter omar mateen was known to the fbi. >> right. >> how is it that someone is known to the fbi and yet able to carry out an attack like this? >> that's a great question. i will follow on, i think, your very good discussion you have had with the other two guests. this is a free country. merely being known to the fbi isn't a crime in and of itself. going on a website. visiting -- being involved in viewing extremist propaganda isn't a crime in and of itself. even if you are, quote, on the radar, whatever that means, doesn't mean the fbi can take action to arrest or detain you. this is a free country. there are layers of complexity that flow from that in terms of what we can do in a free
society. there are risks here. yes, once you commit a crime -- >> steve, i have to cut you off. marco rubio now live in florida speaking. >> the community coming together. as americans we are heartbroken. as i have told the law enforcement here, this could have happened anywhere in the world. unfortunately today was orlando's turn. we are still learning the facts. the fbi will be back to fill us in on details. both senator nelson and i are involved in the intelligence community. we'll get a sense of what we know at this point. suffice it to say we know there is hate in the world, some inspired by a warped ideology. we have been in conflict with it for a long time. we know they seek to intimidate us. they seek to terrorize us. i hope they see today they won't terrorize america or floridians. we stand for and with all americans. irrespective of their sexual orientati orientation, party ideology, of where they live. we are all americans.
you are seeing the response today and this will continue. this will make us stronger. they will not win. islamic terrorists need to know they will not win. america will stand strong, together and despite whatever differences we might have and debate in an open society we are all americans. we stand here together united, confronting this threat that's been a scourge to the world. >> let's go to the command center: >> you have been listening there to both of the florida senators -- democrat bill nelson and republican marco rubio saying the fbi will be coming to the post there in orlando in a bit to fill us in a little bitter many. you heard remarks from senator marco rubio saying regardless of where you live, who you are as americans we stand together. he said there is hate in the world. there is ideology we don't agree with, warped is the word he used. he said he wants to make sure the terrorists know they are not going to win. they won't win the long-term
battle. today that community in orlando is reeling from what they have suffered. we wait now to hear more from the fbi as there are now claims of responsibility. we are learning more about the attacker, his background and the response. we are going to take a quick break now. we'll bring you back as soon as the fbi spokesperson comes to the press conference in orlando to tell you the latest as they continue to gather fact.
welcome back to continuing coverage of the mass shooting in world. we want to bring in our guests tom rogan and doug smith. tom, we are hearing language that sounds coordinated. we got another statement from the presumed democratic nominee hillary clinton saying it is an act of terror and an act of hate. a lot of people thought they may be hesitant to use the word "terror." what is the significance of that at this early juncture? >> caveating that we don't know a lot. the facts early on you saw a number of intelligence committee chairmen and ranking members from the senate, house coming out and making definitive statements suggested alignment with isil. you see that upping quickly to a greater level. i think that's suggesting the u.s. intelligence community has information that is leading them to brief people in that regard.
also i think one of the challenges here and we talked to the assistant director there about the threat that the fbi faces and the challenges it faces. there is limited resources. we are a free society. one of the things we are going to have to debate about going forward is the degree to which not only civil liberties and security is a dynamic to discuss, but the degree to which the agitators for more control in terms of backing away from nsa capabilities. john schindler has written a lot about this. edward snowden. we know for a fact that it's skilled and capable of using encrypted information in ways that make detection hard in the europe and united states. it is a profound challenge and a great concern that you cannot penetrate those communications then you will see these continuing attacks. >> doug, to tom's point though if you are going to call it terror, you are going to call it
hate. in terms of trying to give up privacy to figure out who is carrying out attacks isn't it helpful to add islamic terrorism into this, call it what it is in the sense of being able to give the fbi and others a little bit better feel for what they are looking for? in the same way they coordinated statements calling it terror and hate the word islamic didn't enter into what the president said or what hillary clinton said either. >> i support them saying terror and hate now. this is the challenge the administration has versus us talking on tv. they need to get it right. i am confident in the days that come ahead. director comey and identifies, yes, 100% -- >> the president has been steadfast that he won't use the words islamic terror. he doesn't do it. >> if in the coming days we see overwhelming evidence that's the
case they will say it. right now they are gathering facts, trying to missouove ahea responsib responsibly. they can't sit back and monday morning quarterback. they have to be driven by the facts. if it was an act of isis, driven by islamic terrorism we'll hear them talk about it. it's been a number of hours. let's let the federal bureau of investigation, dhs finish the investigation, tell us exactly what it is. all the while we up our guard and remember we all need to be part of keeping the american homeland safe. it is a challenge in a free and open society to do it. i think what the president is doing and i was in the situation room during the boston marathon and other crises. he brings everyone together. they are working to figure out what's going on with the case. give them hours to figure out what exactly happened. at that point if, in fact, it is an act of islamic terrorism, call it what it is.
>> we know the guy called 911 at least according to local reports and pledged allegiance to the leader of isis. what else could it be? >> it's an easy scapegoat. it's a very heated presidential election talking about these things. i have ever reason to believe he likely could be that. let's let the facts lead the investigators to where they need to go. just the fact that the guy called in and said that on a 911 call isn't enough for me. i want to see the intelligence service, let the investigators figure out what happened. >> tom, is that call enough for you? >> no. look, i think we have an issue in identifying political islam. the majority of islams around the world. we are talking about g4s security. a devout muslim will be heading up the wimbledon security team.
we think about penetrating the groups. they don't look like me but there is a problem in political islam. it reduce it is face to a level of great brutality and limited numbers of people. unless you identify it, push the cause to bringing islam back to the golden age then you will see the perpetuation of the issues, recruitment of more people and the devastation that the groups rip apart in terms of islamic communities. that identification is important. i think it has to come more robustly. >> tom and doug, thank you very much for staying with us. we got more information, we thank you for your time. we'll continue throughout the day to get more. we have teams on the ground. you are headed to orlando as well. >> coverage overnight as well. it is noteworthy that you listen to the president and he'll talk about one thing he enjoys which is gun control. at the same time doesn't speak about islamic terrorism at all.
if the messaging changes over the next few days. >> we'll see. much more to learn. our coverage continues in new york now. >> we leave you with the flag at half staff over the white house. this is a fox news alert on the unfolding horror in orlando. authorities say the man who shot dozens of people in an orlando nightclub be an assault rifle may have had radical islamic leanings. one individual telling the associated press he was known to the fbi. at least 50 people are dead. the deadliest massacre in u.s. history. at least 503 others are wounded. we expect another briefing at any moment. we'll bring it to you when it happens. welcome back to continuing coverage at america's election headquarters. >> hello, everyone. this unspeakable tragedy is being investigated as