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ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES

Police: Eight Dead In "Act Of Terror" In New York City; Sources: Suspect Had Florida Address And Most Recently Lived In Paterson, NJ At least Part time; Trump's Tweet That He Has ordered Homeland Security To Step Up Extreme Vetting Program. Aired 9-10p ET

Aired October 31, 2017 - 21:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

[21:00:00] ANDERSON COOPER, CNN HOST: We begin this hour of breaking news. All we are learning about the worst terror attack here in New York since 9/11. Eight people killed on the bike of foot path running along the Hudson River in the shadow of the World Trade Center sight.

A suspect wounded, in custody. A note found at the scene. We just learned claiming allegiance to ISIS.

Yet, with all that, a city out celebrating Halloween tonight, shaken but far from broken. The top of one World Trade Center lit in red, white, and blue just a few blocks from where we are standing. The Empire State Building, if you see on the screen also red, white, and blue, strength to New Yorkers after a very rough day.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

COOPER (voice-over): 3:05 P.M. A rented Home Depot truck barrels down a bike and foot path on New York's west side.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I see a white pickup truck like a couple more blocks down in the bike path. So automatic, I know something is wrong.

COOPER: Along a popular area in the city, the truck manages to get 20 blockers striking people on the path along the way.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I see two gentlemen laying right there on the bike line with tire marks across their body. You could tell they're not here no more.

COOPER: The truck then crashes into a school bus.

COMMISSIONER JAMES O'NEILL, NEW YORK POLICE: At Chamber Street the truck collided with the school bus injuring two adults and two children.

COOPER: The driver exits the vehicle brandishing what appeared to be two the guns. RAMON CRUZ, WITNESS: He was driving (INAUDIBLE) a little bit, and he was screaming, and he was screaming in the street. He looked frustrated, panicked, confused.

COOPER: This video shows the gunman on foot, a uniform police officer engages, shooting the driver of the vehicle in the abdomen, wounding him. He's later taken to a local hospital a. Paintball gun and a pellet gun are later recovered at the scene.

MAYOR BILL DE BLASIO, NEW YORK CITY: This was an act of terror and a particularly cowardly act of terror.

COOPER: All told, eight are dead, 11 more injured.

DE BLASIO: We know that this action was intended to break our spirit. But we also know New Yorkers are strong, New Yorkers are resilient and our spirit will never be moved by an act of violence, an act meant to intimidate us.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

COOPER: And our late developments in the investigation to tell you about tonight, the suspect getting out of surgery just a short time ago, that allegiance note discovered at the scene, CNN Jim Sciutto has more, joins us now.

Jim, just brings us up to date, what can you tell us -- first of all, about this note?

JIM SCIUTTO, CNN CHIEF NATIONAL SECURITY CORRESPONDENT: Well, that's right, law enforcement source telling my colleague Shimon Prokupecz that the suspect left a note either in the truck or around the truck claiming in English that he was carrying out this attack in the name of ISIS.

Now, that by itself means it doesn't mean that is was an ISIS directed attack. You often have cases where individuals like this are radicalized and ISIS has encouraged its supports online to carry out attacks, and when they do to make some sort of statement of allegiance, doesn't mean it was planned by ISIS, but he was inspired in some way, likely online. That is often the DMO (ph) with an attack like this. We saw this in San Bernardino, the shooters there made a statement on social media. We saw this in Orlando with the Pulse nightclub shooter. He said it to the police that night. But it does show how ISIS is inspiring these kinds of attacks around the world.

And remember, Anderson, you and I have talked about this a lot, it is often called on its supporters to use whatever they can to carry out deadly attacks in the west, including specifically vehicles, which is as we saw here tonight, we saw in Barcelona weeks ago, we saw in Face, in Nice, France, last year. A vehicle by itself is a very deadly weapon.

COOPER: Yes. As I said earlier, the suspect is out of surgery. Do we know -- has law enforcement actually been able to talk to him? SCIUTTO: We know that law enforcement was able to speak to him before going into surgery. We don't know afterwards. And we don't know what they gleaned from that conversation. But they will certainly be making an effort to do so in the days going forward. We know some details, some of which you've said earlier when it broadcast, Anderson, but his name is Sayfullo Habibullaevic Saipov, an Uzbek national who came to the U.S. in 2019. Residence in Florida but also in New Jersey, it's a New Jersey where he rented this truck.

I was told earlier in the evening that there was no specific intelligence about an attack targeting this area at this time in this way, but often with attacks like this, particularly lone wolf attacks, if this is what it turns out to be, there is no warning, there is no intelligence warning of something like it in advance of the attack.

COOPER: Yes. Jim Sciutto, appreciate the update. Thank you.

The FBI wants your help. It's important to point out. They have actually set up a tip line. The toll free number is 1-800-CALLFBI, that's 1-800-225-5321, it say select option 1. You do not have to give your name. Again, the toll free number, if you have information about this person, is 1-800-225-5321.

Speaking of the FBI, we're joined by retired supervisory special agent for the FBI, James Gagliano, also CNN Investigative Reporter for International Affairs, Michael Weiss, Philip Mudd, formerly with the FBI and CIA, and Juliette Kayyem, former assistant secretary for Homeland Security.

[21:05:08] We're talking about this before. But just now, the fact that they have found this note, how that may shift the investigation or widen the investigation in some ways?

JAMES GAGLIANO, CNN LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST: Sure, absolutely gives them something to work with, just like all the human intelligence gained by talking to people at the scene. And one of the things I think is important to stress in this insane month, think about it Anderson, October 1st we had the worst mass shooting in U.S. history. We close out October with now the first terrorist attack in New York City since 9/11.

And one of the things the FBI has been stressing, and I'm glad we put up the 800 number there for tips, is for folks on scene and events like this, here are the things in order that you are to do, run first. If you can't run away, you hide. If you can't hide, fight. And lastly, tell. And I was (INAUDIBLE) I talked to a couple people that are out here in the crowd and they were showing me pictures of the subject. And I asked them, my question was, have you given this to the police, and they said, yes. And that's what people need to do.

COOPER: Yes, I mean that run, hide, fight, is such an important thing to keep in mind. So I think many people, the fight aspect is kind of a newer thing that law enforcement is now encouraging people to do given what they have learned from all the act of shooter situations we've seen. GAGLIANO: The paradigm has shifted. We've seen in a number of these situations that people that, you know, don't understand you got to help yourself first, because first responders they may be minutes away. And those minutes may save your life.

COOPER: Yes. Just in terms of this investigation. I mean, Phil, you were talking about how they have to go about it assuming that there are other people involved and then disprove that over the course of time.

PHILIP MUDD, CNN COUNTERTERRORISM ANALYST: Anderson, one of the hardest things in investigation like this is proving the negative, especially now that we have a note that suggests affiliation with ISIS, somebody who's been in United States, it looks like for seven years. How can I guarantee you that his claims of affiliation with ISIS don't include any personal contact? That he never traveled to somebody two years to talk to an ISIS member. They never had a phone number two years ago that he discarded to talk to an ISIS member. That he never met somebody in the cafe. Reconstructing that timeline over time to tell you what a month or two months, I guarantee that note was just a claim of affiliation with ISIS, but there was never any communication. That is really tough.

COOPER: Michael, how likely is it that there could be a video, kind of martyrdom video so called, which is what we saw in -- I think when Charlie Hebdo attacks, if memory serves me, there was some. And some of the attacks in Europe that we've seen that there have been that.

MICHAEL WEISS, CNN INVESTIGATIVE REPORTER FOR INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS: I was just going to say that. If he did make contact with ISIS, they will have instructed him not to just leave a note, right. They want a martyrdom video. They want him pledging allegiance that (INAUDIBLE) and kind of reading out a confession as to why he's about to do what he's going to do. This is for maximum propaganda value.

So the thing to wait for is, you know, ISIS media channel trying to put up some video in the next few hours.

Now it's strange because as (INAUDIBLE) was mentioning they claimed credit very recently for an attack that had nothing to do with ISIS. Las Vegas, they're right out the gate with that. On this, they're waiting a while. So now another paradigm that shifting is, does their waiting awhile mean they are in production mode trying to prepare some grand announcement that proves essentially that this guy was in fact willing executioner or (INAUDIBLE).

COOPER: Juliette, as you watch what's happening over the last couple of hours. I mean, what challenges do investigators face at this stage?

JULIETTE KAYYEM, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: Well, I'll say that it's not a challenge that the suspect is alive and that will be a lot of information if he's willing to speak about who he is and what his motivations are. Of course, they also now know where he lives and then they're clearly searching for potential conspirators. So that's their main focus, was anyone helped him in that attack, in particular in the rental of the van, people that he may have been with in New Jersey or earlier in Florida. So that's the first piece.

The second piece, of course, is the international side. We tend to talk about the radicalized by ISIS or sort of waiting to see what they have to say. But, really, we have to think of ISIS as sort of an ecosystem now. There are people who are sort of close to the center, who are being directed by them and others who are sort on the periphery, who are sort of -- you know, as I describe it, you know, people -- ISIS' selling hate and these people are buying it, right.

And so, we don't know how long that trajectory where ISIS fits in and where the relationship is with this attack. That will take a lot longer. And it will, you know, involve sort of the usually investigations involving the CIA, foreign intelligence agencies, and foreign travel.

COOPER: How likely is it that somebody in this person's life has information? I mean, knows that, you know, of what their motivation was, what their thinking was, or what they -- that they were actually planning something?

GAGLIANO: The single most important key to this investigation going forward is the treasure-trove of information we have in that hospital bed right now. The fact that he showed up getting out of the vehicle with a pellet gun and a paintball is indicative of fact that he planned on being killed by cop. He wanted to attract attention. He had two weapons in his hand. Neither one of them could really hurt anybody. He wanted to be killed. He was shot in the abdomen. Apparently he's going to survive those wounds. Those interviews that the JTTF are going to conduct, the most critical piece of this investigation.

[21:10:12] COOPER: Phil, I mean, in the past have you found that people and people's lives know, they know something?

MUDD: There's a difference though, let's be clear, between whether they are persuaded he was going to do something, and what I think is the more subtle but more significant question, did they see changes in behavior? Did he talk differently about what the U.S. was doing overseas, did he talk differently about the U.S. political process, did he change his habits in terms of how he dressed, how often he might have practice religion? You're looking not just a simple question of, was he talking about getting in a truck and killing people, but instead, did his behavior change over time in ways that suggested that he was becoming radicalized?

WEISS: I can't think of a single case of a terror attack, thwarted or successful where it is not later discovered that this guy or this person who carried it out was indeed well-known to people around him, family members, his community. I mean, the most infamous case is Farouk Abdulmutallab the so-called underpants bomber who tried to blow up an airliner in the skies of Detroit on Christmas day. His father was minister in the Nigerian government and dropped a dime on his own kid. And said, I'm worried by kid is becoming radicalized because of all the (INAUDIBLE) saying about 9/11, and the (INAUDIBLE) etc.

So, yes, I would not be surprised at all if this guy's relatives or even people back in Uzbekistan had warned somebody that, look, we got to worry about this guy.

COOPER: Juliette, do you agree with that?

KAYYEM: Absolutely. Someone almost always knows. We saw in Las Vegas and the Boston marathon case, the wife or girlfriend is if there is one. And so that's where the investigation will lead. And, you know, just picking up on Michael's point also, you know, the foreign travel is going to be key. He's been here a long time. And it may be he was here a long time with no signs of anything going on. So how long or short was that radicalization process, the challenge for law enforcement today is that radicalization process can be very short, someone can have been here a long time, nothing is going on and then, you know, something clicks or something goes wrong in their life and they turn to terrorism as something to that make their misery seem sort of more symbolic. And that's what we just don't know about his history. He has been here a while.

So, I'm curious about foreign travel and I'm curious about who he was with here.

COOPER: All right, Juliette, thank you. I want to thank everyone on the panel tonight.

The president's reaction to the attack here in New York, CNN's Athena Jones is at the White House tonight. Athena, what the president said?

ATHENA JONES, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Anderson. Well, the president has been tweeting about this, sending three tweets over the course of several hours, the first saying, "In NYC, looks like another attack by a very sick and deranged person. Law enforcement is following this closely. NOT IN THE U.S.A.! He followed that tweet about an hour later with this one saying, "We must not allow ISIS to return, or enter, our country after defeating them in the Middle East and elsewhere. Enough!" And then just before at 7:00 P.M. he put out a third tweet saying, "My thoughts, condolences and prayers to the victims and families of the New York City terrorist attack. God and your country are with you!"

So three tweets coming from the president. The White House also releasing a statement conveying some of the same emotions there. We don't expect to see him on camera or to hear from him necessarily again today. The White House a few hours ago pointing out what they call a photo lid which means we don't expect to see the president but it doesn't mean that he might not send another tweet, Anderson.

COOPER: So, given the president mentioned ISIS in his tweet, presumably he was briefed about the note from the attacker pledging allegiance to ISIS? Or -- I mean, he wasn't saying ISIS directly as relation to this attacker, so he might has been (INAUDIBLE), do we know about any briefing?

JONES: Well, we don't know specifically about the information the president has been provided. We do know as of several hours ago we heard from a White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders who said the president had been briefed by his Chief of Staff John Kelly and that he would be continually updated as the situation develops. As more facts are known.

But, Anderson, as you know, the president has been known at times to make these declarative statements about terrorist attacks before -- sometimes long before official statements coming from law enforcement authorities. So it's unclear exactly what information the president was provided at the time he made that tweet about ISIS. As you mentioned, he doesn't specifically mention this attack and we're only recently learning at least at CNN about these note. So it's not clear whether he was making a guess or a conclusion or if he had actual facts he'd been briefed with. Anderson.

[21:15:03] COOPER: All right, Athena Jones, appreciate that.

Coming up, an eyewitness describes what he saw and what he did as today's attack unfolded. That's ahead.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

COOPER: In the last hour, I spoke with an eyewitness, Christiaan Wagener. He gave a remarkable account. I want to play a portion of that now of our conversation.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

COOPER (on camera): When did you realize something was going terribly wrong?

CHRISTIAAN WAGENER, EYEWITNESS: I was walking to the subway on Chambers Street. I was approaching the intersection at west which has the bike path right next to it.

COOPER: Right.

WAGENER: So I was maybe about 100 feet away from the intersection there. And I saw a car coming down, or the truck coming down the bike path, really, really fast. And it was mowing things down. I didn't even realize at the time when it really was, as the bike rider said.

COOPER: You actually saw it hitting bike riders?

WAGENER: I saw it hitting, yes, but my brain didn't compute that it was actually people, because I heard these horrible noises, tang (ph), tang, tang.

COOPER: So obviously not something you expect to see happening.

WAGENER: No, no. And so, -- but I was -- there was an undercover car chasing it. So I thought it was just -- somebody just trying to get away from the cops, you know, like -- whatever they did just trying to run away. But on the bike path, it was really strange. Then the bus came from the other side and --

COOPER: School bus?

WAGENER: Yes. And he hit, and he went -- started going up here and he was coming straight at me, so I started running back to where I came from.

[21:20:00] COOPER: The -- what you're saying -- the vehicle started going straight --

WAGENER: The vehicle started coming up like that. And, so I started running this way. And there were kids all around me because school was just letting out at the time. So I started running and pushing them this way, get out, get out.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

COOPER: Joining me now is Randi Kaye. She's been talking about the people who also saw what happened. I mean, there were so many people out here who witnessed this.

RANDI KAYE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Absolutely. By the time we got down here there were many police officers, of course, but also some of the eyewitnesses were around. And we spoke to this girl, she's 17-year- old, she's a high school student, (INAUDIBLE) high school here, her name is Elizabeth Chemobelsky, and she was setting up. It was the last period of the day, the last class of the day. She was setting up for swim practice and all of a sudden she heard this horrible noise, so she ran to the window and she saw what happened. She took some pictures. And we talked to her about those pictures and also about what she saw. He's what she told us.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

KAYE (on camera): What did you see?

ELIZABETH CHEMOBELSKY, WITNESS: So, I was in a window sitting on the pool deck right across from two body bags, three destroyed bicycles and helmet. I saw all the police, fire fighters, SWAT Teams, bomb teams, all arriving on the scene.

KAYE: What did those bicycles look like to you?

CHEMOBELSKY: Completely destroyed in a way that I don't think is possible. One bike was completely bent in half. Another one the front wheel was twisted off. And other one was also destroyed.

KAYE: Based on your opinion, what did it look like had happened?

CHEMOBELSKY: It looked like they were on the bikes and the truck must have been moving at incomprehensive fast speed. And they obviously didn't know that the truck was coming because of how damaged it was. There was also a helmet flew off, so that means that -- helmets also flew off, so that means that they were totally disoriented which makes sense.

KAYE: Did you saw a helmet on the ground?

CHEMOBELSKY: Yes.

KAYE: Where were the body bags in relation to the bikes? CHEMOBELSKY: One body which was more twisted was next to the bike that was bent in half. And another body was next to the bike whose front wheel was twisted off. And there was a lone bike, and there was no body next to it.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

KAYE: You know, I asked her how she felt about this happening so close to home. I mean, she's 17-year-olds. She's a high school student. She says he watches the news. She pays attention. She had seen this happen in other countries, in Europe, these truck attacks. She never thought it would get so close to home. Of course she was terrified, but, of course, thankful that she was alive.

COOPER: So many young people around here. You talked to other people as well?

KAYE: Yes, I talked to this woman who had -- you know, they closed that school for a little while, to make sure all the kids were safe. They shut down and this woman didn't know what happened. She heard there was a shooting. She raced down here from her office. She had two seven-year-old twins who were in that school. So, of course, she was very worried about them. But then they were going home to go trick or treating which is amazing to me. We talked about this earlier, people here, life goes on. They're going to watch the World Series tonight or going to a Halloween parade or go to trick or treating. You know, here in the shadow of the freedom tower. It was pretty incredible to see.

COOPER: Yes. Randi, I'm glad you're out here. Thanks very much.

We are learning more about where the suspect was living prior to all this. CNN's Jim Sciutto has a lot more on that. He joins us now.

So what do we know about his time in New Jersey?

SCIUTTO: That's right, Anderson. We reported earlier that he did have residency in Florida, but we've also been learning that he live in New Jersey, specifically Patterson, New Jersey, more recently. CNN spoken to some neighbors there who knew him, who knew that he was there on and off for a period of time.

I should mention that Patterson is a town that has a large immigrant population from Muslim majority countries. Going back to the 9/11 investigation, there were some stops in Patterson, New Jersey, here and there. None of the attackers certainly resided there, but there was some connections there. So you had a history, some history in places of ties to groups like this in the past.

This Patterson, through the years, has been an immigrant community. My father is from Patterson, New Jersey, through the years, it's been an immigrant community for a number of people from all over the world. More recently you had a large Muslim population with occasional ties to groups like this. And we're now learning tonight that he, for a period of time, lived in Patterson. And, of course, we should know that it is New Jersey where he went to this truck from Home Depot that he used in this attack.

COOPER: Jim Sciutto, appreciate that.

We'll be right back with a former CIA and as well as NSA director, General Michael Hayden, to talk about the larger security questions in play.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[21:27:41] COOPER: We keep getting new developments in the investigation of what happened here just a few hours ago. We just got another item. Now, ordinarily we do not show photos of mass killing suspect because the FBI wants information from anyone who might know him. We are doing it tonight, but this tonight (ph) for CNN Jim Sciutto. He is back now. Jim what have you learned? What do we got now?

SCIUTTO: So this photo we obtained this from October 2016 from the State of Missouri, St. Charles County, Missouri Sheriffs Department there. We're told that he was arrested, the suspect was arrested then in 2016, this by a warrant on the Missouri State highway patrol, not clear if this was a traffic-related incident, but he was arrested on a warrant by the highway patrol from October 2016.

This was what happens after an attack like this. We have law enforcement reaching out for any previous contacts with the suspect so that they know where he was before, did he have any previous run-ins with the law. To date, we have not seen or heard from law enforcement that he was on any terror watch list, although that's still an area that they are looking into, any potential nexus to terrorism. But we all are seeing that he had previous run-ins with the law.

And we're also learning as we just said moments ago, Anderson, that he lived in more than one place. He had a Florida residency, but more recently he lived part time in Patterson New Jersey which is just about a half hour from New York or so. And it is in New Jersey where he rented that car.

So, this is what's happening. Law enforcement is spreading their net widely, seeing who else in law enforcement might have had a run-in with him before. And crucially, of course, now that we have him claiming to have carried out this attack for ISIS, whether he had any contact prior to this with known international terrorist organizations. That part of the investigation still very much underway.

COOPER: Yes. Jim. Thanks very much. Appreciate that. Joining me now is former CIA as well as NSA director, Director General Michael Hayden. General, appreciate you being with us.

When you see an attack like this, just in terms of, you know, the Joint Terrorism Task Force, they are leading this investigation, what exactly would they be looking at right now?

GEN. MICHAEL HAYDEN (RET.), CNN NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: Well, some of things that Jim just suggested, Anderson, they're looking now for the connective tissue. They're going to go back and try to reconstruct this man's life to see what has happened to him, what got him to this place, who around him may have known about this, who around him may have aided and abetted this.

[21:30:13] Now we may find that this is just an isolated young man, saddened, troubled, who chose a path of violence, but we may also find some other things that we have to take action on in order to prevent a recurrence of this kinds of events. So it's basically reconstruction. And you had Nada Bakos and Phil Mudd on earlier. Those are the folks I used to bring in to my office to help me understand these things. And those are the things that they've already suggest that -- we now have to do.

COOPER: Would the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force would they be working in cooperation without their intelligence agency, I mean, with the CIA at this point?

HAYDEN: Of course they would. And, of course, the national agencies would now be trying to discover anything they might have on this man and his connections with the broader globalist Jihadist movement.

But, frankly, Anderson, my instincts are if we're going to get information on this man, it's going to come from local authorities, from law enforcement, and from the people around him in his community rather than the national intelligence services of the United States.

COOPER: It's got to be extremely significant that the attacker has been taken alive and doesn't have to be mirandized right away.

HAYDEN: That's a very important thing that you pointed out. And this is going to give us a rare opportunity to take someone who, frankly, I think wanted to commit suicide by policeman who jumping out of the car with those two mock (ph) weapons who did not die and now will be subject to interrogation. And as you've already pointed out on the show, we don't have to mirandize him as long as we have a reasonable threat still existing. So we may actually learn an awful lot, maybe not about ISIS, but about how radicalization takes place by someone who's been in this country for six or seven years.

COOPER: As ISIS is being defeated on the battlefield in Iraq, in Syria, does it have an impact or do you think it will have an impact on these kinds of attacks in the future in Europe and the United States?

HAYDEN: It does. It does, but we need to keep in mind that we are seeing the destruction of the physical caliphate. We are not yet seeing the destruction of ISIS, the movement, or ISIS, the idea. And the physical destruction I think, Anderson, cuts two ways. Number one, it's less of an inspirational movement for folks who might want to attach themselves to something bigger than themselves, but then you do get the desperation from others who might just want to lash out because they see the defeat of something they may have believed in. So I think we see a modest increase in our threat because of the physical destruction, but we may also see a reduction in the caliphate's ability to organize complex attacks against Europe or America. COOPER: A few minutes ago, President Trump tweeted a new tweet. I want to read out. He said, "I have just ordered Homeland Security to step up our already Extreme Vetting Program. Being politically correct is fine, but not for this!" I'm wondering what's your thoughts on that?

HAYDEN: Yes. Look, it's a natural reaction. I think it may have more political content, Anderson, than strategic content.

Remember when I said earlier, we're going to learn about this guy. We're going to get warnings of future people like this, far more likely to come from local communities, and in this case it means local Islamic communities. So we need to be careful with regard to our national policies that we don't alienate these very communities on whom we're going to have to depend for the key intelligence we need.

COOPER: General Michael Hayden, appreciate your time. Thank you very much as always.

Today's attack was the deadliest terror attack in New York City since September 11th, 2001. Well, unfortunately, it was not the first one since. Next, we have a look at other recent terror attacks in the city.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[21:38:10] COOPER: Well, of course, just steps away from the side of the worst terror attack in the nation's history. Today, a new milestone, the deadliest terror attack in the city since that day in September 2001, it is unfortunately not the first since then. CNN Miguel Marquez has more.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

MIGUEL MARQUEZ, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): September 2016, a bomb made from a pressure cooker explodes in Manhattan's downtown Chelsea neighborhood. One separate similar device is discovered nearby unexploded. The bombs to several planted in New York and New Jersey by ISIS inspired Ahmad Khan Rahimi. He was captured after a shootout with police.

JOON KIM, ACTING US ATTORNEY: Inspired by ISIS and Al Qaeda, Rahimi built, planted, and detonated bombs on the street of Chelsea, in the heart of Manhattan and in New Jersey, hoping to kill as many innocent people as possible.

MARQUEZ: Dozens were injured but no one die, one of New York's closes calls post 9/11.

GOV. ANDREW CUOMO, NEW YORK: That there were no fatalities is something to give thanks for today. Because when you see the amount of damage, we really were very lucky that there were no fatalities.

MARQUEZ: That same year, three men arrested in a sting operation after authority say they planned to bomb Time Square and the New York City subway system. Two men were arrested in foreign countries and extradited to the U.S. all pledged allegiance to ISIS.

BILL BRATTON, NEW YORK POLICE CHIEF: We are the number one terrorist target in this country and potentially in the world.

MARQUEZ: In 2012, a 21-year-old Bangladeshi man inspired by Al Qaeda thought he had built a thousand pound bomb to blow up the Federal Reserve Bank in New York. He hoped to strike at the heart of the American economy.

[21:40:02] In 2010, Times Square, again, a failed plot by Pakistani born, Faisal Shahzad. Inspired by Al Qaeda and possibly funded by the Pakistani Taliban, Shahzad came close. Bystanders and authorities tipped off when smoke started pouring from his SUV.

MAYOR MICHAEL BLOOMBERG, NEW YORK: Firefighters, emergency service officers, and the bomb squad responded and the bomb squad confirmed that the suspicious vehicle did indeed cane an explosive device.

MARQUEZ: 2009 saw two plots, one led by African born Al Qaeda inspired Najibullah Zazi to attack the New York City subway system by suicide bomb, the other plots by three Americans and one Haitian immigrant, all Muslim, targeting synagogues and U.S. military aircraft flying out of New York State. Their motive, deaths of Muslim in Afghanistan during the U.S. led war there.

The massive fuel tanks in lines at New York's JFK airport were targeted in 2007. The plot involved four men, one a JFK cargo handler, another a former member of the parliament in Guyana. Their motive, general hatred toward the west and the plot will have hazard could have been serious.

MARK MERSHON, FBI: It would have been a significant loss of property, certainly, and very likely a significant loss of life.

MARQUEZ: A 2004 sting operation netted a 21-year-old Pakistani man for plotting to blow up busy New York subway station just days before the Republican National Convention.

All of these plots either conceive (ph) or partially carried out none deadly until now.

Miguel Marquez, CNN.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

COOPER: With me now is CNN National Security Analyst, Peter Bergen, as well as CNN Terrorism Analyst, Paul Cruickshank.

So, Peter, thoroughly there have been a number of close calls in New York City, obviously, since 9/11. Plots foiled, attackers caught, none of those attacks have been like this attack today, however.

PETER BERGEN, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: Yes. I mean, a number of attacks in that piece we're observing informant driven, the two serious attacks were in 2009, 2010. There were Al Qaeda and Pakistani Taliban trained. Lucky they didn't pan out. But it shows, you know, from a terrorist perspective, Faisal like school shooters, they learn from other incidents.

We've seen 15 of these vehicle attacks in the west, Anderson, since 2014. They killed 142 people including the eight people who were killed today in Manhattan.

And, unfortunately, you know, this is the tactic of choice now, it requires no training, it requires also, of course, you're not buying weapons or buying chemicals for bomb making or going overseas for training, the kinds of things that would bring you to the attention of law enforcement. They're very hard to guard against. We got in a Thanksgiving parade coming in New York. New York police department does a pretty good job of kind of trying to wall off these kind of key event to vehicle traffic, but you can't protect against everything. But certainly, when these big events come up, that's only something that law enforcement needs to consider.

COOPER: Paul, I mean, there was the attack in Chelsea last year where a bomb was actually detonated but no one was killed. This is the first terror attack in New York where there fatalities since 9/11.

PAUL CRUICKSHANK, CNN TERRORISM ANALYST: That's right, the first one Jihadi terrorist attack with fatalities since 9/11. That attempted attack, the bombing in Chelsea we both covered that last year, Anderson. That was a very close call. There could have been dozens of people killed in that attack if they not placed the explosive device either inside a very narrow, a heavy duty metal dumpster. It was high explosive in that case.

But now we have seen a terrorist attack get through. About a year ago, ISIS put out an issue of their magazine calling for exactly these kinds of vehicle attacks in United States, even against the Macy's Day parade in New York.

I'm looking back through, which I've just done, a publication, there's a striking similarity between what we saw play out on the streets of Manhattan this afternoon and the advice given in that magazine right down to an ISIS claim of affiliation written on paper.

And so, one of the things the investigators are going to be looking at is whether this individual had accessed that particular issue of the ISIS magazine. I think there's a high degree of likelihood that he did.

COOPER: Peter, according to a senior law enforcement official, this attacker left a note or have a note in the vehicle or around the vehicle, claiming he did it in the name of ISIS. We don't know if this was ISIS-inspired or directed by ISIS.

[21:45:02] BERGEN: Yes, I mean, there's several levels. I mean, going back to some of the discussion you have with General Hayden, you know, the fact that ISIS is no longer able to train large numbers of westerners in Syria and Iraq, you know, you're not going to see the Paris attack where a 130 people were killed by ISIS trained in Syria and Iraq. But what we're seeing a two kinds of attacks, one is what the FBI calls enabled. And we will certainly investigate. We're going to see if this happened here. Whether there was some kind of direction by a virtual ISIS recruiter somewhere in the Middle East or perhaps in Europe who directed this guy to do this attack, or was he was simply inspired like Omar Mateen in Florida without any direct contacts with ISIS. So right now, those are the two questions investigators surely will be looking at.

COOPER: Paul, we know this attacker is an Uzbek national came to the U.S. back in 2010. You said there's been a significant problem with the Jidahist and Uzbekistan, are there any of those Jihadist groups there affiliated directly with ISIS?

CRUICKSHANK: There is a significant problem with Jihadism and Uzbekistan. They'll be looking at travel patterns whether maybe he went back there. The two major groups in Uzbekistan the IMU, which is affiliated with ISIS, and the IJU, with is affiliated with Al Qaeda.

There are a lot of Uzbeks that have traveled to Syria and Iraq to join groups like ISIS, to join Uzbek brigades affiliated with ISIS and Al Qaeda. And there is a hell of a lot of Jihadist propaganda which is put out in Uzbek.

And one extra note, there was an Uzbek national that was responsible for a deadly truck attack in Stockholm this year which killed a number people in the Swedish capital.

So there is track record of Uzbeks getting involved in these kinds of plots and Uzbek groups having links to terror plots in the west. In fact, there was plot all the way back in 2007 against the U.S. Air Force Base, the Ramstein Base in Germany linked back to an AL Qaeda affiliated, an Uzbek group in the troubled areas of Pakistan, Anderson.

COOPER: And Peter, just in terms of vehicle attacks like this, I mean, there really is very -- it's very difficult, obviously, to prevent these sorts of things.

BERGEN: Yes, I mean, unless we plan to turn ourselves into some sort of prison system where, you know, anywhere where there is kind of large crowds and vehicles able to access them that we're going to kind of cut that off. Of course, that's -- you know, we're not going to do that. It couldn't happen in New York City for all these reasons or any other crowded western city.

So the way to stop these attacks is the FBI has done a study of dozens of attacks in the United States, overwhelmingly the people who know the most information are peers and families members. We know, for instance, in the Orlando attack that the wife certainly knew something about the possible attack and has been charged as such by the FBI. In the San Bernardino attack, somebody provided weapons, a friend knew that there was a Jihadist terrorist attack potentially. So it's enlisting peers and family members to come forward. That's difficult because they're going to be concerned about, you know, people facing long sentences, but that's the way you find the kind of person that's carrying out these attacks.

COOPER: Peter Bergen, and Paul Cruickshank. Thank you very much. Appreciate it. We're going to more when we come back in just a moment.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[21:52:33] COOPER: We've been hearing from eyewitnesses throughout the evening. So many people were nearby including Ruben Cabrera, we spoke just before airtime.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

COOPER (on camera): When did you realize something was happening?

RUBEN CABRERA, WITNESS: I was sitting in front of DMCC, the basketball court over there. I was sitting out front. I heard several gunshots, I want to say about six go off. And I knew something was wrong. At first I saw kids running away laughing, so I thought maybe it was a joke, Halloween, something going on. But something inside me knew it was more than just that. Because I heard a gunshot before, so me and my cousin started walking over to see what was going on. And there's, I guess you would call an overpass over the west side highway, and we walked up there and I could see a totaled pick up truck, another man laying down on the ground with EMS was trying to help him and --

COOPER: Was -- he one of the bicyclist?

CABRERA: I don't know what he was.

COOPER: OK.

CABRERA: I mean, he wasn't in the bicycle lane. He was on the opposite out of the bicycle lane. So, I saw -- try to help them and then when I looked over to the other side of the bicycle lane I saw two people laying down covered with sheets and their bicycles next to them in what appeared to be like their bicycles were run over. Because you could see they weren't right. You could see something hit the bicycle.

COOPER: The vehicle itself, I know you took the video which obviously smashed in the front. Did you see the person get out of the vehicle or the person who had been driving?

CABRERA: No, by the time I got there it was pretty much, I guess, I would say the aftermath --

COOPER: Right.

CABRERA: -- that the shots already -- everything was done by the time I got there. The police responded. It took me maybe two or three minutes to walk over there. The police were already on-the-scene.

COOPER: You're a criminal justice student. You're going to the college down here to study that. But to actually see this up close, what is it like?

CABRERA: It's different. I've never seen something of this magnitude happen. I mean I've heard of shootings, but I've never actually seen one. And to see one and to see how our firefighters, EMS, NYPD responded is such amazing. It was so quick. I was half a block away and there was already fire trucks, ambulance, cop cars already there on the scene. It took me three minutes just to walk down there, I would say two or three minutes.

COOPER: Does it make you frightened?

CABRERA: No, because I know I live in New York City where unfortunately this happens. Maybe not here in this section, but this happens all over New York. I've been here my whole life, 23 years.

[21:55:07] COOPER: Life goes on.

CABRERA: Life goes on. It's sad that it happened. I don't know the people who were killed or injured. I hope the people who are injured do well, but it's unfortunate. And it happens in New York way too often.

COOPER: Well, thank you very much for talking with us. Appreciate it. Wish you the best.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

COOPER: Well, just a few blocks from here the village Halloween parade is a tradition that happens every year. It goes on as planned. Tonight it went on. We'll take you there next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

COOPER: A deadly attack came here just hours before the start of the annual village Halloween parade. Jason Carroll joins us now from there. I think there at the parade there was, you know, I think some concern that they were going to stop it or they're going to call it off, but they decided not to.

JASON CARROLL, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Anderson, it's really a striking contrast between what we saw down where you are versus what we're seeing here which is really a lot of folks who were coming out to celebrate. You already heard from the mayor, from the city officials talking about the heavy police presence. We've seen that all the way along the parade route. A number of police out here, heavily armed some of them. We've seen blocker vehicles at some of the street entrances leading to the parade route. But we've also been talking to a number of folks out there about why they decided to come out here, just sort of a random sampling. Now you had some reservations about coming out here tonight, yes?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I definitely did. I definitely thought about it a couple of times. The first thing that pop in my head was like, do I really want to go downtown like risk it, but then after like thinking it through I was like why should I stay home? I love Halloween. I love like the spirit. I might as well just come down and have a good time.

CARROLL: You heard the mayor and the police commissioner saying not to let the terrorists win, to come out, to go about your lives. Is that some of the thought that you had as well?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Absolutely. Absolutely. I think so. Because at the end of the day there's going to be increased police presence here, there's already a lot of police here and really make sure that we're safe. So I was OK with it.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes, I definitely wanted to pick (INAUDIBLE) to come out here and support the parade, and NYC, why wouldn't you come out here?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Right.

CARROLL: You know, this is sort of an awkward question, but were there any reservations just in terms of knowing that so many folks, you know, lost their lives and still coming out to celebrate?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I mean, it's somewhat fearful, but if you change your life, the bad guys win. I mean, you have to go out and live the way that you're going to live. Enjoy everything that the city has to offer all the time.

CARROLL: Thanks for answer. I want to thank all of you for coming out doing events.