Face the Nation Transcripts August 3, 2014: Frieden, Chambliss, Bloomberg, Jarrett

(CBS News) -- Below is a transcript of the August 3 edition of Face the Nation. Guests include: Dr. Tom Frieden, Sen. Saxby Chambliss, R-Ga., former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, White House senior adviser Valerie Jarrett, U.N. official Pierre Krahenbuhl, David Ignatius, Michael Morell, CBS News' Margaret Brennan, and John Dean.

NORAH O'DONNELL: I'm Norah O'Donnell. Today on FACE THE NATION, breaking news this morning is, yet, another U.N. shelter in Gaza is attacked. At least ten people are dead. We'll have details. Plus, the latest on the Ebola outbreak.

Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu vows to keep pounding Hamas but what humanitarian toll is it taking? We will talk with the head of the U.N. relief effort in Gaza Pierre Krahenbuhl about just how bad the crisis is and what happened at the U.N. shelter in Gaza today.

And as an American doctor infected with the Ebola arrives in Atlanta what steps are being taken to keep the virus from spreading here in the U.S. We'll talk to the head of the Centers for Disease Control.

Then--

PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: In the immediate aftermath of 9/11 we did some things that were wrong. We did a whole lot of things that were right but we tortured some folks.

NORAH O'DONNELL: As Washington races for the release of a congressional report on torture, we'll talk to the top Republican on the Senate Intelligence Committee, Saxby Chambliss.

Former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg is joining forces with the White House on a new push for investment. We'll talk to him and White House senior advisor Valerie Jarrett.

And finally, forty years after President Nixon's resignation, we'll talk to the man in the middle of the Watergate Scandal, former White House counsel John Dean about his new book, The Nixon Defense: What He Knew and When He Knew It.

Sixty years of news because this is FACE THE NATION.

Good morning. Bob is off today. We want to go first to Tel Aviv where CBS News correspondent Charlie D'Agata is standing by. Charlie, what has happened this morning at this U.N. school?

CHARLIE D'AGATA (CBS News Correspondent): Well, Norah, Palestinian sources tell us that an apparent air strike hit just outside this U.N. school in the southern part of the Gaza Strip in Rafah just outside the gates of the school, the entrance. More than ten people have been killed and other thirty people were injured. The U.N. says thousands of people were taking shelter in that school and the Israeli military knew exactly where it was. There hasn't been any comment from the Israeli military so far except to say that they are looking into the incident. If so it is the second U.N. school that's been hit or nearby in the past week and the sixth U.N. facility since fighting began.

NORAH O'DONNELL: And, Charlie, we learned overnight that that missing Israeli soldier has been confirmed dead. What can you tell us about that?

CHARLIE D'AGATA: Well, the news came from the Israeli defense forces in the small hours of the night, that twenty-three-year-old Hadar Goldin was not-- no longer considered missing or kidnapped but he was killed in battle in combat on Friday. This is the day that he was declared as missing and presumed kidnapped by Hamas militants. They wouldn't provide any further details as to what happened to him.

NORAH O'DONNELL: All right. Charlie D'Agata in Tel Aviv. Charlie, thank you.

And this morning we had hoped to speak on camera with CBS News correspondent Clarissa Ward, but she is still making her way across the border into Gaza City. She joins us by phone. Clarissa, good morning. What's happening on the ground there?

CLARISSA WARD (CBS News Chief Foreign Correspondent/on phone): Good morning. Well, despite indications that the fighting might start to ease today as the Israeli military wraps up its operations to destroy those tunnels, it's actually been a very bloody and active day. And we were stuck on the Gaza side of the Erez Crossing between Israel and Gaza for some hours. We weren't allowed to pass through because there was heavy stream-- we were listening to a steady stream of heavy artillery outgoing from the Israeli side. But, clearly, no sign here that the fighting is abating.

NORAH O'DONNELL: We heard Charlie talk about this attack on this school this morning that has killed at least ten, wounded thirty-five others. No confirmation, yet, that it was in fact an Israeli air strike. But once again another U.N. facility struck in this conflict. Do you think there will be fallout?

CLARISSA WARD: Well, it's hard to imagine that there wouldn't be fallout. According to the U.N.-- we spoke to one U.N. spokesperson who told us that at least six U.N. facilities have now been hit. And one interesting detail he told us is that they had given the Israeli military the coordinates of the school thirty-three times, Norah. Most recently just one hour before that missile hit.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Clarissa Ward, thank you.

Joining us now is the commissioner general of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency, Pierre Krahenbuhl. Thank you so much for joining us.

PIERRE KRAHENBUHL (UNRWA Commissioner General): Pleasure.

NORAH O'DONNELL: One of your facilities, a U.N. school, that has been sheltering thousands of people was attacked this morning. What do you know about what happened?

PIERRE KRAHENBUHL: Well, I didn't talk with my colleagues in the ground in Gaza since ten forty-five this morning when the strike occurred in the immediate vicinity of one of our schools in Gaza, in Rafah, specifically, which is sheltering three thousand displaced people from the conflict. It is confirmed that we have multiple deaths and injuries both outside and inside the school ground, the strike itself hit just in front of the main gate in the immediate proximity of the main gate and coming in the aftermath of a series of incidents, shelling incidents in recent weeks and, most recently, the shelling of our school in Jabalia, which provoked an outcry and was clearly and unreservedly condemned by UNRWA and myself. Publicly, this is, of course, another incident that generates both shock and disbelief at the fact that it can happen again.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Well, as you mentioned, this is the second attack on a U.N. school in just the past week. And I believe the sixth attack on a U.N. facility since this conflict began. Are your facilities protecting members of Hamas?

PIERRE KRAHENBUHL: Look, I think what you have to get a sense of is we have two hundred fifty thousand people now sheltered in our schools as a result of the intensity of the conflict that is going on in Gaza. Some of these people have received instructions from the Israeli Defense Forces to leave areas that they were living in. Others fled the fighting. And because we have numerous school buildings throughout the Gaza Strip, we have been able to accommodate them in about ninety school buildings. And so this is very clear under international law that these are premises that are protected. The sanctity of which have to be respected by all parties and so, of course, when they are shelled it is something that is unacceptable in any sense. Now, we have-- also (AUDIO CUT) identified weapons caches that were in the premises, something that we (AUDIO CUT) transparent way because those (AUDIO CUT) endangering our premises by placing weapons in them are unacceptable and we condemn them unreservedly.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Mm-Hm.

PIERRE KRAHENBUHL: But, clearly, nobody can suggest that because weapons are found in one premise this can be in any sense a justification for shelling other schools and endangering the lives of displaced people in the middle of a war zone.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Well, as you know, I mean there is great concern about children who have died in these attacks. Yet, Israel says that Hamas is using civilians, children as human shield. Is that is-- is that what you found?

PIERRE KRAHENBUHL: What we've found and what we know is that when armed forces be it in this case, the Israeli Defense Force or non-state arm groups as the groups present inside Gaza, all of them are bound by rules of international law and humanitarian law which regulate the way in which military operations and combat is taking place in any conflict around the world. And in the case of Gaza, because of its very densely populated environment, all of these military operations have a great risk of endangering the civilians. And that is the case for all of the actors involved. Yes, there are certainly behaviors that expose the population on the ground by militant groups that operate close to civilian premises. But, certainly, if you look at the extent of the damage, the extent of the physical destruction but also the extent of the loss of human life and I witnessed that myself visiting this week the pediatric ward in the main hospital in Gaza seeing the broken bodies of the children there, there is no doubt in my mind whatsoever that insufficient measures of precaution and control and protection are being taken, including by the Israeli Defense Force when engaging in Gaza. And the message I've heard repeatedly this week by civilians in Gaza is that they don't feel safe anywhere. And what they've been saying to me is if we are not safe in an UNRWA school building, where are we going to be safe.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Commissioner Krahenbuhl, thank you for joining us this morning.

PIERRE KRAHENBUHL: Thank you so much.

NORAH O'DONNELL: We turn now to another big story that of the return of one of two Americans suffering from the Ebola virus to the United States from Africa. Yesterday, Doctor Kent Brantly, a physician from Fort Worth, Texas, who is in Liberia when he contracted the disease, came to the United States. He was wearing a protective suit and he actually walked from the ambulance to the hospital when he arrived at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta. So far, seven hundred and twenty-nine people have died and over thirteen hundred have been infected in what is now the largest outbreak of Ebola in history. The outbreak is centered in the West African nations of Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Guinea. And U.S. officials have urged Americans not to travel to the region. A second American health worker infected with Ebola, Nancy Writebol, is also expected to return to the U.S. for treatment in the next few days. Doctor Tom Frieden is the director of the Centers for Disease Control. He is in Atlanta this morning. What can you tell us about Doctor Brantly's condition this morning?

DR. TOM FRIEDEN (CDC Director): Well, it's encouraging that he seems to be improving. That's really important. And we're hoping he'll continue to improve. But Ebola is such a scary disease because it's so deadly. The-- the plain fact is we can stop it, we can stop it from spreading in hospitals and we can stop it in Africa where it is really the source of the epidemic and where we're surging our response so that we can control it there.

NORAH O'DONNELL: But we saw Doctor Brantly in that protective suit walk out of the ambulance. So is it likely he will survive?

DR. TOM FRIEDEN: I can't predict the future for individual patients. We'll follow that closely. But what we do know is that we know how to stop Ebola. It's not easy but it can be done even in Africa. In fact, we have stopped every previous outbreak and I am confident we can stop this one but it's going to be hard because it's spread through so many countries and there's such a risk of further spread in Africa.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Can I-- can I ask you about Doctor Brantly's wife and his two children. They also visited him in Liberia. I understand they're on a twenty-one-day fever watch. Any chance that they contracted Ebola?

DR. TOM FRIEDEN: Well, the-- the fact is that when patients are exposed to Ebola but not sick, they cannot infect others. So it doesn't spread casually and it doesn't spread from someone who's not sick. And our understanding is that they did not have contact with him when he was sick. So it doesn't appear that they would be at risk. But that type of activity, contact tracing, finding people exposed to Ebola and tracking them for twenty-one days and if they develop fever, making sure they're isolated and finding their contacts, that's core public health action and that's how you stop Ebola.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Are you absolutely convinced that Ebola will not spread here in the United States?

DR. TOM FRIEDEN: We know that there are travelers from places where there is Ebola, we know it's possible that someone will come in, if they go to a hospital and that hospital doesn't recognize it's Ebola there could be additional cases where their family members could have cases. That's all possible. But I don't think it's in the cards that we would have widespread Ebola in this country. Because the way it spreads in Africa is really two things. First, in hospitals where there isn't infection control and, second, in burial practices where people are touching the bodies of people who have died from Ebola. So it's not going to spread widely in the U.S. Could we have another person here? Could we have a case or two? Not impossible. We say in medicine never say never, but we know how to stop it here, but to really protect ourselves, the single most important thing we can do is stop it at the source in Africa. That's going to protect them and protect us.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Ebola has killed seven hundred and twenty-nine people, yet, according to the World Health Organization, seasonal influenza kills two hundred and fifty thousand to five hundred thousand people per year. The flu, are we overreacting?

DR. TOM FRIEDEN: Well, Ebola is a deadly disease and because it's so deadly we have to take it seriously. It can be devastating. It can destroy not just the confidence in health care, but have huge social and economic impacts on society. In parts of Africa where we have dealt with Ebola for years, we are now much better able to control it. We find the cases quickly. We stop them quickly. We prevent the practices that may allow it to spread. That's what we will eventually be able to do here. The sooner we do it, the fewer people will die from it.

NORAH O'DONNELL: The CDC is in charge of making sure that Ebola does not spread here in the U.S. And, yet, just this year, we've heard examples of the CDC mishandling anthrax, smallpox, avian flu samples. Are you absolutely confident that the CDC will make sure this virus is handled properly and will not be spread?

DR. TOM FRIEDEN: There were lapses in our laboratory. Fortunately, we identified them and reported them before anyone got harmed and before there was any release of anything into the community. But that really shows the importance of being meticulous with infection control. We are doing that in our labs now. We are working around the clock to make them among the safest in the world. They are already among the best in the world. But it really shows that for health care workers, taking care of people with Ebola or other infectious diseases, it's important to be completely meticulous with infection control. Ebola is not one of the most infectious diseases, but because it's so deadly, the stakes are so high that health care workers need to have a healthy fear of what could happen and turn that fear into action to make sure they take scrupulous action that every single infection control precaution that we recommend is followed.

NORAH O'DONNELL: I know this is a busy time for you. Doctor Tom Frieden, thank you for joining us this morning.

DR. TOM FRIEDEN: Thank you very much.

NORAH O'DONNELL: And we want to turn now to our own expert here at CBS News, our chief medical correspondent Doctor Jon LaPook. Doctor LaPook, thank you so much.

DR. JON LAPOOK (CBS News Chief Medical Correspondent): Hey, Norah.

NORAH O'DONNELL: You heard Doctor Frieden say we know how to stop Ebola. And, yet, there is so much fear out there, right?

DR. JON LAPOOK: There is so much fear, Norah. And just this morning I was surfing the web and people are just frightened that it's going to spread widely in the United States. And I hate to see the adrenaline level of United States rising for a possibility that every Ebola expert and the CDC say is very, very remote.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Why do you think there's so much fear?

DR. JON LAPOOK: Well, you hear about a mortality rate of anywhere from fifty to ninety percent and it just strikes fear. But I think people should feel comforted by a couple of facts. One of them is this is only spread, the Ebola virus, by direct contact with body fluids. And very specifically, it is not spread through the air. So if you're sitting across the aisle in a plane, in a subway from somebody who is coughing, you are not going to get it that way. And this is not Africa. In Africa there are a lot of problems that you heard about the lack of infection control. There are local customs like burial practices where people are actually touching the bodies. And then people are afraid of doctors there. There is a tremendous amount of mistrust. And you can understand why, Norah, people go into the hospitals and they don't come out. So they see a lot of the contacts of people who are incubating the virus running away.

NORAH O'DONNELL: I understand that, Doctor, it is direct contact with bodily fluids and, yet, I've heard it is highly infectious. Is it true that it can be contract-- contracted through sweat?

DR. JON LAPOOK: It can. You know only one to ten viral particles is enough to get an infection. That-- and-- and that's-- that's really very impressive. But, again, you have to touch the person's body. And so as long as you are not touching the body, you are okay. And another comforting factor is the fact that until you get sick you are not contagious. You know with flu, you can be contagious the day before you get sick, and that's one of the ways that it can spread widely. So there are a couple of things that should be reassuring for people here in the United States.

NORAH O'DONNELL: And how close are we to a possible vaccine?

DR. JON LAPOOK: Well, there is a vaccine that's going to phase one trial in September. There're a couple of other medications, cocktails, say two drugs, then one vaccine that could be given to people after they're exposed. But we're-- we're-- we're not ready for prime time in terms of treatment and prevention right now but there is reason you saw the two Americans are being brought over here. Doctor Brantly is already here. And one of the reasons to bring them here is they can get supportive care. So they can get intravenous fluids if needed. And one of the complications of this terrible disease is you can get problems with bleeding, with coagulation. And so, possibly, you can get fresh frozen plasma, platelets, other things that help a person to clot.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Mm. All right, Doctor Jon LaPook, thank you so much. We appreciate it.

And we'll be back here on FACE THE NATION in just one minute.

(ANNOUNCEMENTS)

NORAH O'DONNELL: And we're back with the vice chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, Georgia Senator Saxby Chambliss. Senator, welcome. Good to see you.

SENATOR SAXBY CHAMBLISS (Intelligence Committee Vice Chair/R-Georgia): Thanks Norah. Same here.

NORAH O'DONNELL: I know that the Senate Intelligence Committee has been working for five years investigating whether these enhanced interrogation techniques used after 9/11 were inappropriate and wrong. It is yet to be declassified, will likely come out perhaps next week. What will, generally speaking, this report show?

SENATOR SAXBY CHAMBLISS: Well, first of all, you're right that this-- this has been an ongoing process for over five years now. There was only one vote against proceeding with this program, this investigation when it was authorized in 2009. That was my vote. I thought it was a mistake then. I still think it's a mistake. There is a theory on the part of the Senate Democrats who are the only ones that carried out this investigation that these enhanced interrogation techniques were used against detainees both inside Guantanamo as well as outside Guantanamo and that no significant information was obtained as a result of the use of those enhanced interrogation techniques. Now, that is absolutely wrong. And you are going to be able to see from the report itself, as well as from the minority views that we have put together as well as a response from the Central Intelligence Agency--

NORAH O'DONNELL: Mm-Hm.

SENATOR SAXBY CHAMBLISS: --that information gleaned from these interrogations was, in fact, used to interrupt and disrupt terrorist plots, including some information that took down bin Laden.

NORAH O'DONNELL: So this is very significant. It's about U.S. actions after 9/11, what we did after 9/11. The Washington Post reports that your committee's six-thousand-page report accuses the CIA of systemically misleading government officials on the severity of the methods and their effectiveness. A senior official saying quote, "You come away with the sense that this was pathetically futile." Was torture futile?

SENATOR SAXBY CHAMBLISS: What was done here by the White House as well as by the CIA was go to the Department of Justice early in the process and you have to remember, CIA is not geared up to do detention and interrogation but because of the nature of this war, because of al Qaeda being involved, they were given the challenge of putting together a detention and interrogation program. They went to the Department of Justice, said, okay, what can we do? What legally can we do? They were given legal opinions--

NORAH O'DONNELL: Mm-Hm.

SENATOR SAXBY CHAMBLISS: --as to what they could do and in their opinion they didn't violate that. There will be some allegations of going above and beyond.

NORAH O'DONNELL: But your minority report you say will show evidence where some of these enhanced interrogation techniques or torture, did yield useful intelligence?

SENATOR SAXBY CHAMBLISS: Absolutely. And their, you know, the-- the term torture is being used by the critics of the program. I think that term is going to be disputed both by the folks who were involved.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Is waterboarding torture?

SENATOR SAXBY CHAMBLISS: Waterboarding is one of the specific issues that was investigated by the Department of Justice from the standpoint of does it comply with the Geneva Convention and they made a determination that it is authorized that it is not torture.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Let me ask you about the CIA director, Mister Brennan. There were allegations that the Senate had improperly received some information from the CIA then it was accused by your colleague, Senator Feinstein, that the CIA was snooping on Senate computers, spying on Senate computers. Here's what the director said back in March.

JOHN BRENNAN (March 11): As far as the allegations of, you know, CIA hacking into, you know, Senate computers, nothing could be further from the truth. We wouldn't do that. I mean that's-- that's-- that's just beyond the-- the, you know, the scope of-- of reason.

NORAH O'DONNELL: He said beyond the scope of reason. He called you this past week and apologized. What did he say?

SENATOR SAXBY CHAMBLISS: He did. You have to remember I did not support John Brennan's nomination to be director of CIA so if he has a critic it's certainly me, although I think John has done a really good job as a director. John, when he found out about this breach or about the information that was received by certain Senate staffers on the Democratic side, he called Senator Feinstein and me and he came to us and he sat down, said here's what happened. Well, the fact is we now know he didn't have all the facts. Once he got all the facts he came back and he did apologize. He was wrong. Senator Feinstein was right. And--

NORAH O'DONNELL: But when you hear the CIA is spying on Senate computers?

SENATOR SAXBY CHAMBLISS: Yeah. Well, these are their computers that were on their premises but they were being--

NORAH O'DONNELL: But senators--

SENATOR SAXBY CHAMBLISS: --dedicated to Senate staff. And I'm going to tell you this is very, very serious. If I thought John Brennan knew about this, then it would be certainly we'd be calling for his resignation. But the OIG made a specific finding that he did not. But I will tell you these five staffers that did this, if they worked for me they'd be gone now but the accountability board has been convened and they will be looking into this and-- and they will be dealt with accordingly.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Senator Saxby Chambliss, thank you so much.

SENATOR SAXBY CHAMBLISS: Thank you, Norah.

NORAH O'DONNELL: And we will be right back.

(ANNOUNCEMENTS)

NORAH O'DONNELL: We've got a lot more coming up. Stay with us.

(ANNOUNCEMENTS)

NORAH O'DONNELL: Some of our stations are leaving us now but for most of you we will be right back with a lot more FACE THE NATION. Stay with us.

(ANNOUNCEMENTS)

NORAH O'DONNELL: Welcome back to FACE THE NATION. I'm Norah O'Donnell. Tomorrow, nearly fifty leaders from African nations will arrive in Washington at the invitation of the Obama administration to discuss increasing U.S. investment in Africa. But the event is being overshadowed by the outbreak of the Ebola virus as leaders from the three African nations where Ebola conditions are worsening, have cancelled their plans to attend. Earlier, I spoke with White House senior advisor Valerie Jarrett and former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg about how the crisis will impact the summit.

The CDC has issued a level three travel warning for Americans saying don't travel to these countries--

VALERIE JARRETT (Senior White House Advisor): Non-essential travel, exactly.

NORAH O'DONNELL: --to these countries in Western Africa. And, yet, there are some delegations from those countries coming to America to the nation's capital for this summit. What precautions are going to be made? You'll be there. Are you concerned?

VALERIE JARRETT: No, we are-- we are working very closely, as I said, with the CDC. We're making sure that we're going to observe any necessary protocols for screening. And the good news is the experts have said to us, said it's not contagious unless are you exhibiting symptoms. And those symptoms obviously are quite severe. And so we'll be monitoring the situation very closely but we are confident that the summit will be a huge success and we will obviously take the precautions that are necessary.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Mayor Bloomberg, you are very involved in the summit. What's your goal?

MICHAEL BLOOMBERG (Former New York Mayor): The goal is to explain to Americans the opportunity and American businesses the opportunity in Africa to explain to the African continent why they should look to America for commerce, for education, for medical care. And we can be real partners rather than just being a patron of one of another.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Some of the most-- the fastest growing emerging markets in the world are in Africa.

MICHAEL BLOOMBERG: Well, China has understood this.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Yes.

MICHAEL BLOOMBERG: And people think of Africa as a resource play. That there are great natural resources there which China needs and America needs as does Europe as well. But also there's the potential for selling a lot of things. There the scale is big, it's spread out. But, lastly, China has looked at it and said this is a place where because they are spending highest percentage of their GDP on education of any part of the world, although in all fairness it's starting small, but you are going to create a middle class there that's going to want an awful lot of the products and be the next great-- the next big cities are going to be in Africa.

NORAH O'DONNELL: And, yet, I'm fascinated by essentially what China has done in Africa. The United States was Africa's leading trade partner until 2009 when the Chinese surpassed it. We looked up the numbers. Now China's trade with Africa is almost two-to-one over the U.S. And China's foreign aid to Africa has increased dramatically, too. Almost half of their foreign aid goes to Africa.

MICHAEL BLOOMBERG: Why wasn't it coming--

NORAH O'DONNELL: Are we being outpaced by China?

MICHAEL BLOOMBERG: Yes, yes, we are. And in all fairness to the Obama administration they recognize it. And now what we want to do is make sure business understands that and then business' job is got to be to help the President convince Congress.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Mm-Hm.

VALERIE JARRETT: This summit has the opportunity in order to be a game changer. We really believe that we are switching the paradigm and, as Mayor Bloomberg said, stop looking at Africa as simply a place in need of foreign aid and look at it for the enormous potential that it has for investment. And whether it's power Africa where the President is committing to doubling the power in Africa or whether it's focusing on food security where rather than simply giving resources to Africa, teaching Africa how to create their own agriculture. Whether it's in areas like health, and Mayor Bloomberg was just telling me before we came on set about the enormous investment that he is making in health in Africa. All of these are opportunities for both government but also, very importantly, the private sector to invest.

MICHAEL BLOOMBERG: When we started inviting heads of major corporations, the-- the outpouring almost nobody said no. Because a lot of these companies have been doing business in Africa for hundred years and they understand the potential and they aren't getting-- they never get involved in ideology. They just look for markets and that's what they are supposed to do.

NORAH O'DONNELL: I want to get your take on Israel. Another cease-fire has collapsed. How is this going to end?

MICHAEL BLOOMBERG: Well, I think you look at most of the Arab countries, they have been, I think, very quiet in criticizing Israel. Hamas is a dangerous group of terrorists who wants to destabilize people and governments and take away peoples' rights. And Israel's position is that rockets have been fired from Gaza. They have a right and an obligation to protect their people. Israel, in all fairness, thirteen years ago, pulled out of Gaza demilitarized it and today you see Egypt and other Arab countries wanting to contain Gaza and keep the borders closed, as does Israel, because there are terrorists among them mixes. And, unfortunately, the Palestinians are paying a terrible price. It is a great tragedy because Hamas is putting themselves and their rockets in places where if Israel strikes back to stop the rockets, which they have no choice, you are, unfortunately, going to see casualties. And I think in all fairness, Secretary Kerry, at the request of the President, has been trying to find some solution to the problem. But whether there is a solution to the problem, I don't know. There's no simple answer to these kinds of things.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Yeah.

MICHAEL BLOOMBERG: You can't walk in and say the good guys are wearing white hats and the bad guys are wearing black hats. You don't know everybody has got the same color hat on and that's the thing that American troops have had to deal with in Iraq and Afghanistan. Exactly the same thing. You can't tell who you are fighting in this kind of war.

NORAH O'DONNELL: It's difficult to watch the images that we air on our network and other networks. This week a school attack that had thousands in there. It was described as bloody mattresses. Children killed who were sleeping next to their parents. The U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said Thursday, "Nothing is more shameful than attacking sleeping children." Did Israel go too far?

MICHAEL BLOOMBERG: Israel cannot have a proportional response if people are firing rockets at their citizens. Can you imagine if one of the contiguous countries to America were firing rockets at America, the same people who are criticizing the Israelis would be going crazy demanding the President does more. Unfortunately, if Hamas hides among the innocent, the innocent are going to get killed because Israel just does not have any choice but to stop people firing-- Hamas firing rockets at their citizens. They have a right to defend themselves and America would do exactly the same thing.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Doesn't the Geneva Conventions lay out that you cannot attack schools or hospitals?

MICHAEL BLOOMBERG: Nobody is attacking schools or hospitals. We are attacking Hamas. But Hamas is standing in the middle of a hospital. If they had-- standing in the middle of a hospital and firing rockets at your kids, what would you expect us to do? Would you really want us to not try to stop them?

NORAH O'DONNELL: Mm-Hm.

MICHAEL BLOOMBERG: And, unfortunately, if there are innocents getting killed at the same time it's not Israel's fault.

NORAH O'DONNELL: The White House called that attack totally indefensible?

VALERIE JARRETT: It was. But, look, this is why we thought the cease-fire was so important. And Secretary Kerry has been working vigilantly at the President's direction to be a constructive force. It's-- it's a devastating situation. Israel absolutely has the right to defend itself and we are Israel's staunchest ally, but you also can't condone the-- the killing of all of these innocent children. And so we are very concerned. We are monitoring the situation closely and Secretary Kerry will do everything within his power to try to be helpful here.

NORAH O'DONNELL: You're very close with the President. I mean is he-- how does he feel about this?

VALERIE JARRETT: He's very, very concerned, obviously.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Is he frustrated by the inability to--

VALERIE JARRETT: Well, sure, he's frustrated, of course. I think everyone involved is frustrated but you can't let your frustration get in the way of trying to be a constructive player here and that's what he's determined to do.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Valerie Jarrett, Mayor Bloomberg, great to have both of you. Thank you so much.

VALERIE JARRETT: Pleasure. Thank you.

MICHAEL BLOOMBERG: Thank you.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Thank you.

(End VT)

NORAH O'DONNELL: And we'll be right back with our panel.

(ANNOUNCEMENTS)

NORAH O'DONNELL: And we're back with some analysis with David Ignatius of the Washington Post, CBS News State Department correspondent Margaret Brennan, and CBS News senior security contributor who is also the former deputy director of the CIA Michael Morell. Great to have all of you here. I want to start with this: Senate Committee report which come as early as this week about some of the methods that the CIA and the U.S. used after 9/11. Michael, you heard the President on Friday say we tortured some folks.

MICHAEL MORELL (Former Deputy CIA Director/CBS News Senior Security Contributor): I know the President. I know that he believes what he said. But what I think people need to remember is that when the CIA undertook these techniques, they had multiple legal opinions from the Department of Justice, specifically, saying it was not torture.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Hm-Mm. And, yet, Margaret, we have this report coming out which will be highly critical. It is believed of the CIA that not only were these techniques used and could be considered torture but also that they yielded very little intelligence information.

MARGARET BRENNAN (CBS News State Department Correspondent): Right. And there's been a lot of concern in the administration though they say these are sort of the sins of the Bush administration. They're afraid the Obama administration may pay some price or more broadly, the country will because of backlash. There were some talking points that were allegedly accidentally leaked to the press this week where the administration was trying to get ahead of what could be some of the damaging headlines coming out of this, including countries that helped to host secret prisons, who they were, what happened at some of those, and the fact that some allegedly were not fully informed within the administration itself.

NORAH O'DONNELL: David, what do you think of this generally speaking? I mean they've been working on this for five years. And, you know, the headline from the Democrats, who lead the committee, is going to be that not only did we do things that were wrong, I mean the President said that, but that they yielded little intelligence?

DAVID IGNATIUS (Washington Post): As a journalist, I-- I have to believe that telling a story as fully as possible is a way to put this terrible period behind us. So I think it's good that the report's going to come out.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Yeah.

DAVID IGNATIUS: I'm going to read the report but I'm also going to read the minority report by the Republicans because they argue that the claim by the majority that this yielded no intelligence, that it was-- it was of no purpose, the Republicans are very critical of that. And from my sense of-- of this material, the proper position to take on this is to be agnostic. I mean we won't know finally where the piece of intelligence that led to the identification of Osama Bin Laden's hideout came from and to say that-- that-- that we do, that seems to misstate the record as I understand it.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Mike, I know that you have signed a non-disclosure agreement. You're the-- were the deputy director of the CIA. You've read all of these reports, you can't speak specifically about the content but you are critical of the way this report was put together, am I correct?

MICHAEL MORELL: The one thing I would say about the reports is I would agree one hundred percent with David. Read all three of them. Read all three of them before you come to any conclusion. In terms of process, I think it's important to note that not a single person, who approved the programs or who was involved in the programs, were interviewed by the committee, not a single person. Norah, if a reporter filed a story without doing a single interview, I think they would be fired.

NORAH O'DONNELL: How is it that a report that was worked on for five years that they didn't interview any of the principal players?

MICHAEL MORELL: That is a good question for the committee.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Okay. On the way that this was then carried out, this investigation we know it has ensnarled the current CIA director John Brennan. He emphatically said that we did not snoop on these computers which were technically CIA computers that were used by Senate investigators, but they did look at Senate staffers' e-mails. Should this trouble us at all? I mean just constitutionally speaking that the CIA was looking through Senate investigators' e-mails? David.

DAVID IGNATIUS: Yes, the-- the CIA inspector general made clear that the conduct of CIA staffers who somehow we still don't know precisely the technique looked into the Senate staffers' computer files and found that they had a document that in the CIA's views they weren't authorized to have. That that should worry us. That does seem like us moving across the separation of powers. As Senator Chambliss said earlier on the show there isn't evidence that John Brennan, the director, knew about it. So that in a sense puts him outside of this issue. But-- but it was-- it was a terrible mistake. Just the final point I would make is we shouldn't forget that these issues of interrogation are going to happen in real time. I mean this is being conducted entirely as an historical exercise looking backward, but we are getting involved in a tough fight against ISIS in Iraq and Syria where this issues of what do you do with people you capture is-- are going to come up again. They're-- they're-- they're real-time questions not historical ones.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Mm-Hm. I want to turn now to the situation in Israel and Gaza this morning, another attack likely by an Israeli air strike on a U.N. school that was sheltering thousands of Palestinians. At least ten dead, thirty-five injured. Margaret, you cover the State Department. You've traveled with Secretary Kerry. Another cease-fire collapsed this week. What does the administration do?

MARGARET BRENNAN: There's tremendous frustration because the administration will very sort of plainly acknowledge that in an hundred-and-forty-square-mile area, which is the size of Gaza, you cannot truly have a pin-point operation. You are going to have mass civilian casualties. Nearly two thousand civilians so far, eight thousand injured; and there is a lot of concern about that body toll. And because of that there's been this push to find any way to stop the fighting and to have the cease-fire. And you saw this embarrassing sort of unraveling of diplomacy in just a few hours in these past few days. But the diplomacy is really messy on this. It is not clear who truly can have influence over Hamas. The bet has been the Qataris and the Turks can wrangle them at negotiations, but it's not clear whether they have, as President Obama, said full control over all the Palestinian factions on the ground. At the same time, it's been very clear that the Israelis will only end the fighting on their own terms.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Mm-Hm.

MARGARET BRENNAN: On their own time-frame when they are done with these operations against tunnels.

NORAH O'DONNELL: David, you had a really good piece this week titled John Kerry's big blunder in seeking an Israel-Gaza cease-fire. What was his blunder? And what're you hearing about what's next?

DAVID IGNATIUS: I think the mistake Secretary Kerry made was in-- in seeking the short-term cease-fire to end the terrible violence. He ended up empowering Hamas and its allies, Turkey and Qatar in particular and-- and in a sense taking power away from the more moderate elements, moderate Palestinians under Mahmoud Abbas, the moderate Arabs in the region. I've learned in the last few days that Secretary Kerry in the last week since this intense criticism by many people, including me, has moved to try to do what he can to strengthen the role of the Palestinian Authority under Mahmoud Abbas in any future settlement in Gaza. So, for example, the Palestinian Authority will police the checkpoints between Gaza and Egypt. The Palestinian Authority may be responsible for paying salaries in Gaza. In all these ways, I think Secretary Kerry has maybe learned a lesson that you want to come out of this with moderates stronger and-- and radicals close to Hamas and in Hamas weaker.

MARGARET BRENNAN: Well, I would say to that, though, I mean Kerry, when I was with him just a week and a half ago, he drove to Ramallah and he visited with Mahmoud Abbas. But he has been tremendously politically weakened by what has happened in Gaza and what appears to be a strong show of force by Hamas. The difficulty here is if you remember back in April, the Israelis were not willing to work with a unity government. And, ironically, now, the call would be for there to be a united Hamas, some members working with more moderate delegation in these talks. That structure seems to have fallen apart. But the Egyptians, a number of countries are-- are emphasizing, as you are, you need to empower the moderates. The question is whether they can be at this point.

DAVID IGNATIUS: Well, that's where Secretary Kerry should be and I think is trying to be now.

NORAH O'DONNELL: All right. David Ignatius, Margaret Brennan, Michael Morell, great to have all of you this morning. Really fascinating discussion. Thank you so much.

And more ahead. We'll be right back with former Nixon White House counsel John Dean. Stay with us.

(ANNOUNCEMENTS)

NORAH O'DONNELL: This week marks the fortieth anniversary of a defining moment in American history, the resignation of President Richard Nixon. It was August 9, 1974, when Nixon boarded Marine One for the last time and flashed his famous V for victory. But his undoing took years in the process, starting with the break-in at the Democratic National Committee headquarters at the Watergate Office Building in June of 1972. One of the most important figures in shedding light on Nixon's role in the cover-up, a scandal that became known as Watergate, was then White House counsel John Dean. Testifying in front of the Senate Committee, investigating Watergate in 1973, Dean implicated Nixon and other top White House officials, including himself, in the Watergate case and, eventually, spent four months in prison for his role. And John Dean is with us today to talk about his new book, The Nixon Defense: What He Knew and When He Knew It. John, great to have you here.

JOHN DEAN (The Nixon Defense): Thank you, Norah.

NORAH O'DONNELL: What's new in this new book because you did transcribe thousands of new recordings?

JOHN DEAN: I did. Every page has something I didn't know. But the big things are, I'm surprised how passive he is in the beginning, how he's getting his information from very few sources, just Haldeman, a little bit from Ehrlichman and the Washington Post. He slowly approves every though-- every early move in the cover-up is approved by Nixon. And then he starts getting increasingly involved. And, finally, he gets totally obsessed with it and it really is consuming all of his time.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Was there one specific thing that you learned from these recordings that said, gosh, how did I miss this or how did I not know it at the time?

JOHN DEAN: I didn't know that he had literally been engaged in suborning Jeb Magruder's perjury, which was key. Jeb was the deputy director of the campaign. His perjury wasn't key to the success of the early cover-up. Nixon's right in the middle of that. I didn't know he'd-- he had actually raised money for the Watergate defendants to help keep them on the reservation, as we used to say or-- or silent. He solicits and sells an ambassadorship just to raise money for the Watergate defendants. This-- this was all new to me.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Mm-Hm.

JOHN DEAN: So there are things and-- and little things by connecting the pieces day by day, I set out to try to understand how could somebody as savvy as Richard Nixon let his presidency fall apart on a bungled burglary.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Mm-Hm.

JOHN DEAN: Well, you track it day by day, you see how it happens.

NORAH O'DONNELL: But it was more, I mean Nixon was involved in the dirty tricks. It was more--

JOHN DEAN: Yes, he was.

NORAH O'DONNELL: --than just that, right? I mean even Bob Woodward who has an excellent review of your book in the Washington Post says we may never know the extent of the dirty tricks?

JOHN DEAN: That's true. And-- and one of the real important things The Post did is they mailed Watergate, the-- the burglary with other events and the abuses of process that occurred. And I think that is the only way you can really understand what happened in the Nixon presidency.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Mm-Hm. The other thing is President Nixon specifically directed his White House chief-of-staff to destroy the tapes. Why wasn't it done?

JOHN DEAN: You know, I-- I-- it happens twice.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Mm-Hm.

JOHN DEAN: He raises it with Haldeman in-- in April. And Haldeman says "Sure. I'll take care of it." He also cautions that maybe you want to keep some of them. Those in the national security area. Henry is making his own record, maybe you want your own record and they-- and they talk about having a switch system but they never go there, they never do it.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Mm-Hm.

JOHN DEAN: He raised-- Nixon raises it again, doesn't happen. I can't explain other than Haldeman gets so consumed by Watergate himself he just let it go.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Mm. In fact, you say I think in the book that it was just one more example of just how the-- the White House was won sort of poorly. They just didn't carry out a lot of the decisions that were made?

JOHN DEAN: You know, it's-- I always thought Nixon, you know, considered option papers and had his legal pad and was writing the pro and con of this and the other thing. He is a very seat-of-the-pants decision-maker and that's one of the reasons he got into some of the trouble he got into with Watergate.

NORAH O'DONNELL: So the tapes were not destroyed but again what about that eighteen and a half minutes that were missing?

JOHN DEAN: I did a special appendix just on that issue because I knew it would come up. There is a very small group of people who could-- could have done it, couple of them are still alive. And I was more interested in why they did it. And the reason they did it and the reason it was erased, whoever did it, is because it would have blown Nixon's defense that he didn't know anything about Watergate and the cover-up until I told him on March twenty-first. And this was not true. I know now from the tapes he knew many times but he also knew on Jan-- on June twentieth, the date of the eighteen-and-a-half-minute gap.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Mm-Hm. Well, it's a fascinating read and Bob Woodward even say that these new tapes depict a White House full of lies and chaos and distrust, crookedness that makes Netflix's House of Cards look unsophisticated.

JOHN DEAN: I am about to do a binge watch on that.

NORAH O'DONNELL: All right. Let us know how they compare. John Dean, what a pleasure. Congratulations on the new book.

JOHN DEAN: Thank you.

NORAH O'DONNELL: Forty years. And Bob will be back next weekend and we will have much more on the fortieth anniversary of Nixon's resignation, including an interview with the two Washington Post journalists who broke the story of Watergate, Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein.

And we will see you tomorrow on CBS THIS MORNING with Charlie Rose and Gayle King. We will have the latest on the Ebola crisis and all the other news. Thanks for watching FACE THE NATION.

  • CBS News

Comments

Follow Us

Face on Twitter