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CBN NewsWatch AM: January 17, 2019

CBN NewsWatch AM: January 17, 2019 Read Transcript

- [Narrator] This is CBN News Watch.

- And thanks for joiningus for this first edition

of CBN News Watch, I'm Efrem Graham.

Ahead today we're gonnatake a look at that

deadly impact that thesuicide bombing in Syria

on President Trump's decisionto pull the US troops

out of the country.

And the state of religiousfreedom in America

and religious persecutionaround the world.

Plus, in the midst ofthe government shutdown,

we'll see what's reallygoing on along the US Mexico

border, all those storiesand more are ahead today

in this edition of CBN News Watch.

We want to begin thoughwith the suicide bombing

in Syria which killed 19 people including

four US service men on patrol.

As Chris Mitchell nowreports from Jerusalem,

the attack provoked messagesto President Donald Trump

about his decision to pullUS troops out of Syria.

- [Chris] ISIS claimedresponsibility for the blast

caught here on securitycamera footage in the

Syrian town of Manbij.

After the attack, SenatorLyndsey Graham interrupted

the confirmation hearing of William Barr

to make a direct plea to President Trump.

- My concern by the statementsmade by President Trump

is that you'd set in motion enthusiasm

by the enemy we're fighting.

Humane people were tryingto help wonder about us,

and as they get bolderpeople we're trying to help

are gonna get more uncertain.

- [Chris] Graham said herecently had a meeting

at this same restaurantwith Kurd's, Arab's,

and Christian's who hopeto establish a Democratic

government in northeast Syria.

- So I would hope thePresident would look long

and hard of where he's headed in Syria.

I know people are frustrated,but we're never gonna

be safe here unless we'rewilling to help people over

there who will stand upagainst this radical ideology.

- [Chris] In Anchora,Turkey's President Erdogan

sent a different messageto President Trump.

Don't stop the pullout.

- The attack could havethe aim of influencing

the decision that Americatook, that Mr Trump took.

But because I saw Trump'sdetermination to withdraw,

I believe that he willnot take a step back in

the face of such an act of terror.

- [Chris] Trump's announcementto pull out of Syria

has provoked a tug of war over who will

control northeast Syria,while Erdogan wants Turkey

to control a 20 mile securityzone, Russia's foreign

minister pushed backon Turkey's land grab.

- We believe that the optimaland only right solution

is transferring these Syrianterritories from when the

United States troops leaveto the control of the

Syrian government, Syrian armed forces,

and Syrian administrative bodies.

- But critics warn ifthe Syrian government of

Bashar Assad resumedcontrol of Northeast Syria,

it would open the doorto Iranian influence.

With all of these competing interests,

Turkey, Syria, Russia, Iran, and the US,

a new Middle East isemerging, and it remains

to be seen who will shape its destiny.

Chris Mitchell, CBN News, Jerusalem.

- Chris, thank you, here inthe US the government shutdown

now in its 27th day dragson with little end in sight.

And now it looks like therecould be no State of the

Union address by President Trump.

As Mark Martin reports though,House speaker Nancy Pelosi's

reasoning about stopping thespeech because of security

concerns may not hold up.

- [Mark] No deal to reopen the government,

no State of the Union.

That's the bold messageSpeaker of the House

Nancy Pelosi is sendingto President Trump.

In a letter to Trump, shesuggests finding another date

or that he deliver his speech in writing.

- Mister Speaker, thePresident of the United States.

- [Mark] Putting off theannual Address would take

away the President'spowerful platform to make

a case for his southern border wall.

Still Pelosi says it's not about politics,

but a matter of securitywith the Secret Service

and Department of Homeland Security

affected by the shutdown.

- This is a House keepingmatter in the congress

of the United States so wecan honor the responsibility

of the invitation weextended to the President.

He can make it from the Oval office.

- [Mark] House Republicanleader Kevin McCarthy

says Pelosi's move isunbecoming of a speaker.

And Homeland SecuritySecretary Kiersten Nielsen

disputed her claimsabout security tweeting

"The Department of HomelandSecurity and the US

"Secret Service arefully prepared to support

"and secure the State of the Union."

Still no words from President Trump,

but he did sign a bill ensuring

back pay for federal workers.

And yesterday he metwith the bipartisan House

problem solvers caucus,but little came of that.

Meanwhile, the Trumpadministration now has essentially

doubled its estimate onhow much the shutdown could

hurt the economy.

Heritage Foundationeconomist and former Trump

campaign advisor Steven Moretells CBN's Faith Nation

this could go on forweeks with neither side

willing to budge.

- Steven, how long doyou think this can go on?

How long can PresidentTrump, how long can he really

ride this out?

And will there be a breaking point?

- I don't think anyone knowsthe answer to that question.

Because you'd have to askNancy Pelosi and Donald Trump

the answer to that question.

Right now, they seemto not be close at all

and Pelosi has basicallysaid I'm not negotiating.

It's hard to reach acompromise when the other

side isn't negotiating,so God forbid this could

go on for another threeor four weeks, I hope not.

- [Mark] And as far as thePresident's State of the Union

speech goes, if thePresident doesn't deliver it

from the House, anotherpossibility for him is giving

it from the Republican controlled Senate.

Republicans are weighing their options.

Mark Martin, CBN News.

- In the midst of the government shutdown,

one part of Washington youcould say is wide open.

The 2020 Presidential election,

although it's still nearly two years away,

a number of Democraticcandidates are taking

early steps to run for President.

Amber Strong shows us those candidates

need to figure out how to stand out

in an already crowded field.

- I am a candidate forPresident of the United States

of America.

- [Amber] From the landof the Alamo to late

nigh couches.

- I'm filing an exploratory committee for

President of the United States tonight.

- Tonight.- To a cozy kitchen talk.

Democratic candidates are looking

for fresh ways to connectwith voters in a race

that's still a year away.

New York Senator KirstenGillibrand is the latest entry.

She made waves in 2017after calling out fellow

Democrat Al Frankin forsexual indiscretions.

Now she's leaning into a winning topic for

Democrat's, health care.

- Cause as a young mom,I'm gonna fight for other

people's kids as hard asI would fight for my own.

Which is why I believethat healthcare should

be a right, not a privilege.

- [Amber] Former Obama HudSecretary Julian Castro

hopes to strike a cord with immigration.

- Together we will showthat hope can be bigger

than fear, that light canbe bigger than darkness.

And that truth can be bigger than lies.

- [Amber] Then there'sformer California attorney

general and senator Kamala Harris.

- And our children andour grandchildren will ask

at that inflection moment where were you?

- [Amber] She's expected toanswer that very question

on Martin Luther King Jr day.

If the bingo card of likelycandidates brings back

memories, it could bebecause the last time around,

17 Republicans slugged itout for the Presidency.

As we know, there can only be one.

According to a December Quinnipiac poll,

former VP Joe Biden tops thelist of favorable candidates.

Followed by senator Bernie Sanders.

With that stiff competition,Democrat's want their

candidacy to stick out.

Take a look at life on the southern border

through the eyes of BetoO Rourke's Instagram.

- This is my mood mix.

- [Amber] And along toHarris' Mood Mix on twitter.

- A song that lifts myspirits always, Oh Happy Day.

- [Amber] Or come home withSenator Elizabeth Warren,

she announced her intentions in December.

- Hold on a sec, I'm gonna get me a beer.

- [Amber] But candidates bewareof how you use social media.

The commander in tweet willlikely be watching and waiting

for a time to strike.

Amber Strong, CBN News Washington.

- [Efrem] Coming up we'regonna take a look at the future

of religious freedom inAmerica and the persecution

of Christian's around the world.

We'll have those stories whenwe come back, stay with us.

(light music)

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- Religious liberty is oftencalled America's first freedom.

25 years ago Congressofficially established,

January 16, as the religiousfreedom day in honor

of one our founding documents.

I spoke with DavidClosson of Research Fellow

at the Family ResearchCouncil about the threats

to religious freedom in the US today.

So historically the ideaof religious freedom

enjoyed broad support,how's it looking today?

- Good afternoon, and yesyou're absolutely right.

Historically religiousfreedom has enjoyed broad

bipartisan support in the United States.

In fact in 1993, inresponse to a Supreme Court

decision, Congress introducedthe Religious Freedom

Restoration Act, it wasintroduced by then Congressman

Chuck Schumer, and in theSenate by Ted Kennedy.

And it passed unanimously in the House

and by 97-3 vote in the US Senate.

And President Bill Clintonsigned it into law.

So you're right, there wasbroad bipartisan support

for religious freedomfor conscious protection

in this country.

But that is changing todayand that's problematic.

Just in the last couple ofyears, you've seen this issue

come up with questionsbeing asked to nominees

to the federal Judiciary.

And you've also seen thisissue come up in the wedding

industry, where bakersand florists, bakers

like Jack Phillips outin Colorado who's faith

teaches them that marriageis an ordinance of God.

And therefore they cannotbe a part of a ceremony

that would require them tosay something that violates

their deeply heldconvictions and conscious.

These beliefs are comingunder attack in some sections

of our society.

- Why do you think judiciarynominees and people like

the Baker have these issues challenge?

Why is this happening?

- And that's a good question,and on the judiciary,

that caught everyone's attention in 2017

when ranking memberFiendstein if you remember,

in the Senate Judiciaryhearing asked Amy Coney Barritt

about her faith, and kindof famously or infamously

might say, looked at her and said,

looks like the dogmalives loudly within you.

And then she suggestedthat Barritt's faith might

be a concern and you'reseeing these religious freedom

concerns coming inconflict with some of the,

especially in the LGBT movement.

Some of the issues with thecontested sexual orientation,

gender identity laws,that's where a lot of these

conflicts are coming up.

- David, you write that there'sa subtle shift in language

that can lead to a weakeningof religious freedom.

What's the differencebetween freedom of worship

and freedom of exercise of one's religion?

- Yeah, that's a great question.

You saw that language beingused by some officials

in the previous administration,some other organizations.

Freedom of worship which isthe language you're seeing

used by some, it impliesyou have the right to

do what you want within thefour walls of your church,

your synagogue, or your mosque.

But then as soon as you walk out the door,

or drive off the parking lot,

you lose your religious liberty.

And that's not the case,the constitution provides

for the free exercise ofreligion, which allows people

to exercise their faithto live out their life

in accordance with theirfundamental beliefs

and convictions andimportantly, the Supreme Court

has affirmed this.

Most recently in the Hobby Lobby case.

The Little Sisters of before.

So it's a slight nuance with the language,

but the constitutionprotects freedom of religion,

and religious exercise, notmerely just a freedom of

worship.- All right, David Closson

thank you so much for your time.

- Thank you.

- And looking at religiousfreedom internationally,

North Korea again tops thelist of the 50 most dangerous

countries to follow Jesus.

The 2019 watch list releasedWednesday by the Open

Doors highlights whereaction is desperately needed

to protect Christian's.

White House Correspondent Ben Kennedy

brings us that story.

- President Trump has metwith many of the leaders

who countries make the list.

We're talking about China,Nigeria, Saudi Arabia,

and North Korea just to name a few.

The Trump administration makes

religious freedom a priority.

Case in point, fighting for the release of

Pastor Andrew Brunsen from Turkey.

But there is more the government can do.

And that's really thebackbone behind this list.

- All you who believe, answer the call.

- [Ben] The spread ofradical Islam increases

the danger for Christian's worldwide.

- Many Christians are beingkilled because of their faith

and I know many familiesthat they have lost so many

family members because of their faith.

- [Ben] Father Daniel preachesto nearly 200 families

in Iraq where he faces intensepersecution by Al Qaeda.

- [Ben] You told me manypriests are leaving because it's

quite frankly not safe.

Why are you staying?

- Well I'm staying becauseto stay with my people.

So this is the only thingwhich is keeping me staying

there and working with them because

they need help now urgently.

So if I'm not going to be there,

who's going to help them?

- [Ben] Iraq is number13 on the watch list of

countries where Christian'sface the most persecution.

Each year, the Watch Doggroup, Open Doors USA

documents the most oppressiveand restrictive countries

for Christians.

Topping the list is NorthKorea followed by Afghanistan,

Somalia, Libya, and Pakistan.

- We believe now based upon our research

that there's over 245million Christian's who live

in areas of extreme or highpersecution, that's a lot.

- [Ben] He adds thatviolence against Christian's

increased dramaticallythis past year in China.

- They moved up from number41 to 27 on the list.

- [Ben] Big jump.- It's a huge jump

and it shows that thingsare getting more difficult

for China and it's a bigchurch, so a lot of people,

millions of people are affected.

- [Ben] North Korea remainsnumber one for the 18th

year in a row, despite talksbetween President Trump

and dictator Kim Jong Un.

- I would love to seehuman rights be part of

the discussion when you'retalking about nuclear

arms because you can tellwithin 30, 60, 90 days

if conditions haveimproved for Christian's

that are in the labor camps.

Right now there's over 60,000Christians in labor camps

in North Korea, a lot ofpeople don't know that.

- [Ben] Vice President Mike Pence does,

and today reaffirmedthat the White House will

always be a champion for people of faith.

- Protecting and promotingreligious freedom

is a foreign policy priorityof this administration.

- Open Doors continues itsefforts hoping governments,

human rights groups,and other organizations

will take notice, getinvolved and help believers.

For example, Bahrein droppedoff the list this year.

After meeting withChristian leaders to set up

a safe space for people to worship.

Open Door CEO says it is arole model in the Middle East.

Ben Kennedy CBN News, the White House.

- [Efrem] Still ahead, whilethe government shuts down

over the President's borderwall, we're gonna take

an up close look at what'sreally happening along

the southern border as we hear from people

who live there and from law enforcement.

Stay with us.

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- [Narrator] Life, it'smeant to be lived fully.

Jesus said it,

I came to give you life.

Life to the fullest, life in your family.

Life in your finances, life inyour body, mind, and spirit.

Life in your everyday.

At, we're takingwhat Jesus said seriously.

We're here to help you discover life.

Life, live it fully.

- [Narrator] Discover the I Wills of God.

I will rescue him,protect him, answer him,

be with him in trouble, deliver him,

honor him, satisfy him with long life.

Show him my salvation.

- What I felt was loved and treasured.

- God spared my life twice in three days.

- The good lord hadgiven me a second chance.

- [Narrator] Call1-800-700-7000 or visit

The I Wills of God, the latestteaching from Pat Robertson.

- With Democrats in Congressand the White House both

refusing to budge on bordersecurity, the apprehensions

of illegal immigrantsare up dramatically along

the southwest border.

Our correspondent ChuckHolton just returned

from Arizona where heasked local residents

and law enforcement about what's really

happening along the border.

- [Chuck] Warner Glenn'sfamily first settled

here along the ArizonaMexico border in 1896.

At 83 years old, Glennworks the ranch each day

and is well known throughout the area.

He says illegal immigrantshave always been a part

of the landscape.

- We moved down here in'62 and at that time,

there would be two orthree illegals coming

through and looking for work and all right

you're working on and off.

They were wonderful forespecially hard labor type

work, and good cowboysif you need a cow boy.

But I tell you nowadays, thefew that are coming through

are pretty hard core,especially the drug guys.

- [Chuck] And now residents on the border

are seeing an overall rise in crime.

- When they come back, if they go by

a residence, and nobody'sthere, they're going to

go in and look around.

And firearms, top of the list.

Any kind of jewelry, top of the list,

cash, top of the list.

- We don't lock thedoors because they just

break the window anyways.

- [Chuck] Billy Grossmanlives nearby and illegals

have entered his home a number of times.

He recently caught a smugglertrying to steal his truck.

- Well I brought him back to the house and

my wife called the sheriff.

And the sheriff and borderpatrol come out and got him

and then we went backto the pickup and there

was a bale of marijuanain the back of my pickup.

And he had stole a lotof stuff from the house.

- [Chuck] But petty theftisn't want worries these

old cowboys the most.

- And that would be nothingto a terrorist from ISIS

or these guys, I mean it'dbe just a cakewalk for them

to go up through these mountains.

- Well if its that easyfor an unemployed Mexican

to walk across here, ISIScan come in plum simple.

- In fact, 3755 knownor suspected terrorists

were prevented from travelingto or entering the United

States by the Departmentof Homeland Security

in fiscal year 2018.

(cows mooing)

This is one of theloneliest border crossings

on the US Southern border.

It's on the Tahaodum Indian Reservation.

Which is about 4000 squaremiles of desert on the

US southern border in Arizona.

The Tahodum people live onboth sides of the border.

And they used to cross with impunity.

But it's getting hardernow for them to visit

their relatives becauseof the incredible amount

of human smuggling anddrug trafficking that

happens in this area.

Unemployment on the reservationsits at more than 25%.

While the average annualincome is only $8000.

This makes smuggling anattractive proposition

when cartel members offerup to $5000 per load.

Matt Thomas is a deputy in Pinal County,

just north of the reservation.

- That is all open desertand there's small villages

throughout the reservationbut no major towns,

no major cities, very minimal population.

Very minimal law enforcement,so they don't have a lot

of interference to dealwith between Mexico

and when they hit our county.

There's a huge area that the cartels use

to cross into the USwhere they go undetected.

And as they cross intothat area, then they start

to funnel because ofterrain towards our county.

- [Chuck] That makescatching these smugglers more

and more challenging.

And this corridor has becomeknown for violence too.

Last year a border agentwas shot by smugglers

as he patrolled alone in the vast desert

west of Noghalis.

- Those that want to comein this country and harm us,

terrorists have theinfrastructure to get through

here in Cochise County.

- [Chuck] Cochise countySheriff Mark Dannels

oversees a border county covering

more land than Connecticut.

He says when the governmentfails to take a strong

stand on immigration, itonly makes things worse.

- Any time this administration talks about

amisy, or anything thathas to do with the border,

we have an influx of people coming across.

We sit back all the time and just wonder

why won't they do somethingto fix this problem.

- [Chuck] President Trump has so far had

difficulty making long termchanges to truly stem the tide.

And while the politicians point fingers,

the cartels are ramping up their business.

Over the last 10 years,the amount of cocaine

coming across the southernborder has more than doubled.

The amount of methamphetamine,fentanyl, and heroin

seized has increased as much as 4000%.

While the 5000 members of theUS military currently deployed

along the border bolsterexisting barriers,

the additional air assetsthey provide are also giving

border agents a faster way to respond when

they get alerted.

- It's been a great partnership,we've had extreme success.

Just the other day wewere able to apprehend

three different groupswithin a two hour window.

And traditionally if wewere just on the ground

that could take one agentabout four to five hours

to apprehend one group.

- [Chuck] With the cartelsrushing to take advantage

of the crisis, and withCongress and the White House

at odds about solutions,the troops on the border

are going to stay aslong as they are needed.

On the US Mexico border, I'mChuck Holton for CBN News.

- Stay with us we'll be right back.

(light music)

- [Narrator] Parents,the SuperBook bible app

is a great way to get yourchild reading the bible.

Because in today's busyworld, we can use some help.

The free SuperBook bible app has fun stuff

your kids will love.

They'll have a blast learning the bible,

playing great games, watching cool videos.

Discovering heroes in the bible.

They'll have fun whilethey learn God's word.

The SuperBook kidsbible app available now.

- [Narrator] Life, it'smeant to be lived fully.

Jesus said it, I came to give you life.

Life to the fullest.

Life in your family.

Life in your finances.

Life in your body, mind, and spirit.

Life in your everyday.

At, we're takingwhat Jesus said seriously.

We're here to help you discover life.


live it fully.

- [Narrator] Discover the I Wills of God.

I will rescue him,protect him, answer him,

be with him in trouble, deliver him,

honor him, satisfy him with long life.

Show him my salvation.

- What I felt was loved and treasured.

- God spared my life twice in three days.

- The good lord hadgiven me a second chance.

- [Narrator] Call1-800-700-7000 or visit

The I Wills of God, the latestteaching from Pat Robertson.

- Welcome back, we wantto remind you that you

can listen each day to theCBN News Daily Run Down

podcast with Caitlin Burke.

It brings you inside thestory CBN News is covering.

Caitlin talks with ourcolleagues for a behind

the scenes look and more onthe stories we bring you.

Go to, simplyclick on the show tab

to find the Daily RunDownpage where you can listen

and you can subscribe.

Right now it's time foryour Thursday thankful,

I hope you'll join me inthis prayer of gratitude.

Father, I thank you fornew doors open and old

doors closed, I trustyou with the gift of life

you have given me.

I also love the newdreams, new visions, and

new talents you're allowing me to see.

With that word Iencourage you to make this

a thankful Thursday.

That will wrap thisaddition of CBN News Watch.

Remember that you canfind more on the issues

you care most about at

And you can watch CBNNews programs any time

on our CBN News Channel.

Plus we'd love to know whatyou think about the stories

you've seen here, you can do that

by emailing

And you can reach outand touch us on Facebook,

Twitter as well as Instagram.

Hope you will indeed makethis a thankful Thursday

and join us right backhere same time tomorrow.

Goodbye everybody and god bless.

(light music)



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