tv CNN Newsroom With Brooke Baldwin CNN April 14, 2017 12:00pm-1:01pm PDT
nation, russell, gave a heartfelt message he wants people to hear. >> remember in that uniform behind that badge, there's a person that is loved and honored and respected by many people. i want you just to remember that. >> reporter: a message that reaches far beyond navajo nation. >> we need to recognize that these are real people with families, with children, with spouses, with mom, dad, we need to teach our children to respect and honor law enforcement while they are young so when they grow up and they see a police officer, they will be thankful that somebody is there protecting them. >> reporter: boris sanchez, cnn, window rock, arizona. continuing on, you're watching cnn. i'm brooke baldwin. thank you for being with me. we'll begin with north korea.
they talk about a merciless retaliation that would leave no survivors. this comes amid when kim jong-un could mark a holiday with a nuclear test. if he does, there's a chance that vice president mike pence could be just across the border. the vice president is scheduled to arrive in seoul, south korea, on sunday. a north korean test would be the first one on president trump's watch and the president has already said on twitter that north korea must be dealt with and if china doesn't do it, the u.s. with its allies with. cnn's jessica schneider is covering this story from trump's mar-a-lago estate, his club. the president is being briefed there in palm beach. who is briefing him on this? >> reporter: brooke, there was a question when president trump boarded the plane, who would be down here with him.
members of the national security staff are here at mar-a-lago in south florida. they are keeping an eye on the situation and briefing and informing the president. of course, monitoring all of this because a new day has dawned on north korea. of course, their national holiday today. it was a relaxed president trump. he spent several hours at the trump international golf club in west palm beach, a few miles from mar-a-lago. he's now back at mar-a-lago and there's a secure facility. it's no white house but it is a secure area where we know that there are video conferencing features as well as classified features. the president can get briefings there. that's the area where president trump was when the strikes happened in syria so we know that the staff is briefing the president. really, brooke, no clear indication how president trump might respond if there is this nuclear test in north korea that experts have warned on on this
national holiday there in north korea. but, of course, earlier this week we did see a decisive action from the president in syria and, of course, his military in afghanistan. brooke? >> i guess we now know, even the tweets are getting through to north korea as they've called him the most aggressive president in history. jessica, thank you so much in florida for us. in meantime, new video of the massive bomb that the u.s. dropped on isis. this is the moment of impact as the massive so-called mother of all bombs exploded over tunnels in afghanistan. this is one of the most powerful nonnuclear bombs in the u.s. arsenal. the explosion killed at least 36 isis fighters and destroyed their tunnels. u.s. military leaders defending the bomb's use for the first time in combat. as far as how the operation was authorized, president trump will not say if he, himself, green lit the strike. he was asked about it talking to
reporters. >> did you authorize it? >> everybody knows exactly what happened. so -- and what i do is i authorize my military. we have the greatest military in the world and they've done a job as usual. we've given them total authorize gla ing and that's what they are doing. if you've looked at what has happened over the last eight weeks and compare that to what has happened over the last eight years, you'll see there's a tremendous difference. a tremendous difference. so we have incredible leaders in the military and we have incredible military and we are very proud of them and this was a very, very successful mission. >> this is while sources are telling cnn that it was actually general john nicholson in afghanistan who signed off on the use of this bomb. but that the white house was informed before the bomb was rolled out. peter better aga peter bergen is joining me. jason beardsly is also with me,
ceo of the underground movement. jason, beginning with you, the president is being vague on whether he was the one who authorized this bomb. do you think that's beneficial for the commander of chief? >> well, thanks, brooke, for having me on. i think he's talking about kind of a standard thing in the military, this sort of biforcation of approval and authority and a lot of times he's trying to tell us he's pushed the approval and authorities for certain actions down to the regional commanders and then we have h.r. mcmaster and james mattis. these are two of the great titans of national security advisers that we've seen in a long time. i think he's telling us that he's pushed the decision down to them. he's got to trust in his military leadership. we've got an incredible military
and incredible leaders. there's no doubt that they are going to handle that policy. i think donald trump has showed us what that looks like to trust those leaders. so whether it benefits him or not, i think it will because it encourages the military at the regional and subtheater command level to know that the president has got trust in the forces that he's hired to do this work. >> peter, how do you see it? >> yeah. i mean, i basically agree. i think that -- we know from cnn's reporting, as you've said, brooke, that it was general john nicholson who authorized this. this was a tactical decision. i'm sure he flagged up the chain that he was going to do this but didn't seek permission and it's quite within his rights to do this. after all, this was not -- it's one strike. not like a change of strategy in afghanistan. right now, cnn is reporting that general mcmaster will be traveling to afghanistan soon and we're in the middle of
review of the afghanistan situation. >> you're right. it is significant that he will be there soon. that's all we know. jason, back over to you. looking at it from the other side, if some sort of strike were to go awry, where does the buck stop then? >> right. excellent question. in reality, the buck still stops at the president's desk. we lost a special forces soldier last week our commanders are going to make these positions and they are thoroughly thought out and well-trained professionals. h.r. mcmaster, his thesis was on the balance of military relations. he's a studied alcolight. the buck still stops with the
president but this is why good presidents and leaders -- you know, you have to fire generals. we saw that time and time throughout our history. when you get the right generals in place and right policy, they will use judicious wisdom and we'll see positive effects. not just strategically but tactically. >> this the biggest bomb of this kind in the u.s. arsenal, never been used before, called the mother of all bombs. when you hear 36 isis fighters, how does that ring for you? >> well, i'm pretty familiar with where that bomb was dropped and if you send in conventional forces or even special forces, you'd be -- these are the dug-in positions and one of the most remote places on the planet and
there's a cost/benefit analysis. no casualties of afghanistan or u.s. oral lied troops, i think that was a pretty easy call for the commander. >> and just as i'm looking at you and thinking of this part of the world, we all think of your interview with osama bin laden and you can never tell us where you were but somewhere in this part of the world, were you aware then of the tunnels -- obviously it was al qaeda. now we're talking about isis. can you tell me briefly about that snl. >> yewe interviewed bin laden somewhere in the region of where this bomb was dropped. it was night and we were blindfolded. but this is an area where jihadis and other terrorists have been using since the soviet war in the 1980s. it's very remote, lots of caves. right on the border between
afghanistan and pakistan. it's a no man's land. that's why they are there. bo bora bora was probably a dozen miles from where this bomb was hit. this area will continue to be used by these groups. >> peter better again, thank you so much. jason, thank you for coming on. thank you for serving our country as well. let's move on and talk about carter page. the fbi received a warrant, fisa warrant as a possible russian agent. he's totally contraikt diddidic himself. what's going on around there? how often does the president of the united states actually call u.n. ambassador nikki haley? you might be surprised. the ambassador gets candid and
talks about their relationship with jamie gangel. and the trump administration will not reveal its visitor logs which breaks with the obama administration. the question we're asking is why. we'll be right back. makes thise best simple salad ever? heart healthy california walnuts. the best simple veggie dish ever? heart healthy california walnuts. the best simple dinner ever? heart healthy california walnuts. great tasting, heart healthy california walnuts. so simple. get the recipes at walnuts.org.
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welcome back to cnn on this friday afternoon. i'm brooke baldwin. cnn is now learning british intelligence shared with the united states communications between associates of donald trump and russian officials during the campaign. these intercepts were captured during routine surveillance of these russian officials. this is happening as carter page, the trump campaign's former foreign adviser has been in a series of puzzling interviews. page offering contradictory answers as to what he may have talked about with the russians. >> did you ever talk to anyone
there about then candidate trump would be willing to get rid of the sanctions? >> never any direct conversations such as that. look, it's -- >> what do you mean direct -- i don't know what that means, direct conversations. >> i'm just saying, that was never said. no. i never offered that. no. nothing along those lines. absolutely not. it may -- topics, i don't -- we'll see what comes out in this fisa transcript. something may have come up in a conversation -- i have no recollection and there's nothing specifically that i would have done that would have given people that impression. >> with us now, carl bernstein, cnn political analyst and journalist and author. it is so good to have you back, by the way, in person. you have been all over this story. carter page is all over television. i'm curious, who do you think is advising him and what's going on with this guy? >> i have no idea who's advising him and i think he's trying to
save his legal position so that he can avoid any kind of prosecution and i don't pretend to know what his exact situation is. i think much more important is the fact that the president of the united states is impeding and obstructing our ability to find out what has really happened with the russians and people around his campaign. and i don't mean obstruction in the sense of obstruction of justice as a legal matter but rather by trying to divert us with talking about what susan rice did or leaks and all the rest. he has done absolutely nothing except try and keep investigators from knowing what went on with the people around him, whether it's flynn, whether it's sessions. all of these matters. so it's time for the president of the united states to say, we want to get to the bottom of how it was that a hostile foreign power tried to undermine our most basic element of democracy
free elections in this country and i want everybody near me, around me, in my campaign, in my administrations to go down those committees. he's done just the opposite. that raises the question, why has he done the opposite? and what we know of these intercepts by the british and others is that they believe and did a little whistle blowing action on their own, went to the fbi and cia and this is known to the prime minister of britain. it's known to the heads of state elsewhere in europe that people close to donald trump were discussing things in an inappropriate way about the election with russian operatives of some kind. we need to know what happened and not how a president who is keeping us from what is happening. >> yes. and on the president and we've been talking a lit this week about the president's reversals.
a lot is going on with regard to russia and how he wouldn't say an ill word about vladimir putin and said it wouldn't be bad to have a relationship with russia to now changing his position on putin, on assad, even on china as a currency manipulator. what do you make of the shift with the president? >> i believe that, one, he's perhaps learning on the job. i hope that's the case. >> are you encouraged by it? >> it's not encouragement. let's put aside russia, the hallmark of this presidency has been lying by the president,
demonstrible untruths. and now perhaps we will see a coherent philosophy. i don't know. we've seen him change his position at least to the point of saying that the united states has a different role in the world than the one i imagined when i was a candidate for president of the united states. but three days does not a new donald trump make. he's been donald trump for 70 years and he hasn't changed his spots yet. so i would not jump up and down and expect to see a coherent set of anything in the space of a few days. let's be hopeful. >> okay. some people are hopeful. the man himself called himself flexible. >> that could be -- >> so many politicians are stuck in the mud and don't change their opinions. >> donald trump is flexible in
the following way. donald trump's whole life has been about winning for himself. not for other people but winning himself. i think he has seen in the white house he hasn't been winning. so maybe trying some different ways might get him toward winning and winning affection as well or a sense of accomplishment from the people of the united states. affection, i don't want to overdo it here. but he has 40%, whatever that number is, he has real support in the country. let's not minimize it even though it may be the lowest numbers of a new president, ever. he's changing some things. let's look at it. but meanwhile, the president of the united states needs to be truthful and that's the bottom line. and so far, we haven't seen evidence of that. and on this question of the russians, it's really important if -- and it's also possible,
you know, you asked me about carter page. it's possible that what some of this business with the russians could be about are people who were co-opted by the russians around donald trump and then in fact donald trump could have been duped in some ways into the positions that he took in the campaign. something like that could have happened. again, mr. president, open up, tell your people, let's see what happened. >> i think to your point we just don't know. we don't know yet. >> no. we don't. what we do know is the president of the united states has done nothing but divert and not tell us, hey, we want to get to the bottom of this. we see no indication of that. >> okay. carl, thank you. >> good to be here. >> thank you very much. coming up next, the u.s. ambassador to the united nations sits down with cnn.
what ambassador nikki haley says about her relationship with president trump and her ambitions for the future. >> he knew when he hired me that i made it clear i didn't want to be a wallflower. i'm very passionate in nature and he's fine with it. >> we have that piece from jamie gangel. also, the easter egg roll. the woman who organized this event for eight years joins me next. if you have moderate to severe rheumatoid arthritis like me,
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she has gone from being an o outspoken voice in the trump administration. nic nikki haley talks about her rise and it was a very famous democrat who inspired her to get into politics in the first place. jamie gangel has more. >> reporter: from condemning the chemical attacks in syria, u.n. ambassador nikki haley has taken center stage as the leading voice of foreign policy in the trump administration. not afraid to speak her mind -- >> for those who don't have our backs, we're taking names. >> reporter: or contradict her boss. >> i don't think that we can trust him.
>> reporter: has he ever said to you you shouldn't have said something? >> no, he has not. >> reporter: are you surprised? >> he knew when he hired me that i made it clear i didn't want to be a wallflower. i'm very passionate in nature and he's fine with it. >> you're not going rogue? >> no, i would never go rogue because i'm very aware of who i work for. but it's not uncommon for him to say, make sure you say this, don't be afraid to say this. he's given me a lot of leeway to just say what i think and interpret what he thinks. i'm a strong voice by nature. i'm sometimes a bull in a china shop and he allows me to do that. >> reporter: friends say that same strength and independence served haley well growing up in
south carolina. the daughter of sikh immigrants in india, her father a professor, her mother a lawyer. but the family suffered constant discrimination. >> they had never seen anybody in a turban. they didn't know who we were or what we were growing up you felt it. >> one such memorable moment when she and her sister were disqualified from the little miss beauty pageant which crowned one white winner and one black winner. the judges said they were neither. >> my no, ma'am said, well, nikki's been practicing this song and it was "this land is your land, this land is my land." >> there's the irony of the story. >> it is. my mom said your job is not to show them how you are different. it's to show you how you are
similar. >> nikki went on to get her degree in accounting and married and raised two children. her daughter rena now a freshman in college and her son nalin who is 15. along the way she credits two women with her interests in politics. >> your role model, you frequently say, is margaret thatcher? >> yes. if you want something done, ask a man. if you want something done, ask a woman. >> but the woman who inspired you to go into politics, to run, was a democrat. >> yes. >> named -- >> hillary clinton. >> one day, she went to hear her speak and she said for every reason people tell you not to do it, that's for every reason that you should. that was it. i was done. i didn't know you weren't supposed to run against a 30-year incumbent in a primary. but ignorance is bliss. >> she became the first indian-american and first woman
governor of south carolina. >> so help you god. >> so help me god. >> overnight she was a rising star in the republican party. thrust on the national stage after the horrific mass shooting at charleston's mother emanuel ame church. >> everyone just wanted to hug her. there is this image of nikki crying. >> and then she won praise for her successful campaign to remove the confederate flag from the statehouse. >> she did something that many thought was impossible. a female who ran for governor and she beat all of the boys. she's always persevered. >> her star-power and clout was never more apparent than during the presidential campaign when she endorsed florida senator marco rubio and many thought this could be the gop ticket. >> donald trump did not take it well and he went on twitter. the people of south carolina are embarrassed by nikki haley.
and not 20 minutes later you responded, "bless your heart." what does "bless your heart" mean when you're from south carolina? >> it's a polite way of saying read between the lines. >> trump didn't hold it against her, naming haley his u.s. ambassador and it appears he's pleased with her high public profile. >> is there any tension with secretary of state tillerson? he's been so quiet. he's kept such a low profile. and you've been out there. any awkwardness? >> i think it's just the personalities. he's very much an executive. he's thoughtful in his approach and how he moves forward. i'm one that's not afraid to say anything. you know, i'm not easily intimidated so i can go out and say things. i think we actually compliment each other very well. >> it has, however, led to speculation that she might like his job or higher office. >> everybody i talk to said,
does she want to be secretary of state? >> no. >> do you want to be senator? >> no. >> are you going to run for the white house? >> no. >> you're not going to run for the white house? everyone thinks you are. >> you know what's amazing, and this has happened my entire work career. is everyone thinks that i'm ambitious and everybody thinks i'm trying to run for something and everybody thinks i want more. and the truth of it is, i'm just passionate. >> but you wouldn't rule out that some day you might run for the white house? >> i can't imagine running for the white house. >> you really can't? >> i really can't. >> jamie gangel, thank you for that. kim jong-un, his regime, says president trump is the most aggressive president ever. does that change the dictator's plans? and just in, a verdict involving former patriot star aaron hernandez who is also facing double murder charges.
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breaking news out of boston. a jury has found former nfl star aaron hernandez not guilty of murdering two people. the stunning decision coming just moments ago as a former new england patriot stood trial for double-murder. jean casarez is working this for us now. we covered the other trial. he has been convicted of murder. this is just entirely separate. >> entirely separate. it's a huge victory. i'm not sure it's as much of a victory as aaron hernandez as it is for jose baez, his attorney. found not guilty in two counts of murder. he was found guilty of unlawful possession of a firearm.
this all stems from even before he was convicted in the murder of odon lloyd. it was july 2012 when he was at a nightclub, having a good time. somebody had drinks, they spilled the drinks on him. he got upset. what prosecutors said was that he then went outside and started firing at a car that had who he believed the people that spilled the drinks on him. well, two victims did perish at that time. and a good friend of aaron hernandez's was with him and that person became the star witness for the prosecution. but then we have another wrinkle, brooke, because months after that circumstance and that shooting happened, this good friend named bradley of aaron hernandez was in florida, so was aaron hernandez, and bradley got shot between the eyes allegedly by aaron hernandez but he survived and that allowed him to
become the star witness in the prosecution's case to describe exactly what happened that night at the nightclub, shooting at the car, five bullets. the thing is, jose baez, the defense attorney, turned around on cross-examination and decimated that witness for the prosecution, that star eyewitness, allegedly, by saying you're a liar, you're paid to get a deal by prosecutors, you're a drug dealer, and the jury obviously did not believe that star witness. aaron hernandez found not guilty. >> but still he's in prison for life? >> but he's in prison for life because of the murder of odon lloyd. >> jean, thank you so much. let's turn our attention now to north korea here. just hours after a threatening a quote, merciless response, north korea is marking the biggest celebration of the year. this is the birthday of the
founder, kim jong-il. and now the world waits to see if kim jong-un will launch a nuclear test. and how will the world respond if he does that. let's talk about this with director of the korea working group at harvard, john park. nice to see you. >> good seeing you, brooke. >> you have these tweets from the president that have clearly reached north korea because north korea acknowledging them and saying that trump is one of the most aggressive presidents in history. what do you make of that? >> this is a new dimension happening at a high level. a lot of the different pieces, the deployment of this uss aircraft group, the "carl vinson," you see the stakes are very high. we're seeing a two-level
approach to this unfolding crisis. one is almost an entertainment and then the military deployments around the area as well. >> militarily speaking, one response to consider is this pre-emptive strike but do we have enough intelligence to know about where launch pads or stockpiles are even located, their capability? >> sure. with respect to what is anticipated by the community of north korea watchers, the site there is actually regularly surveilled by commercial satellite imaging. you have researchers keeping a regular tab on what is happening there. the latest information is there's a tremendous amount of activity but the site, the location is interesting. it's very close to the border with china. so if in fact there is an attempt at a pre-emptive strike, because it's so close to the border with china, it's a whole new dimension when it comes to
that kind of proximity. >> and in terms of proximity, those who would be fearing the most is that the south koreans -- the vice president will be in seoul on sunday and the japanese. >> yeah. and the interesting thing there, brooke, is that everyone has a different threat perception. for south korea, they have long held the view that the biggest threat to them is long-range artillery. for the japanese, their concern is this ever growing capable north korean ballistic program and for the north it's the icbm getting closer and closer to the united states. so you get a sense of how these different threat perceptions makes coordination difficult. >> what do you think it would take for kim jong-un to want to pull off something that would obviously demand a response? >> it seems that he has been very careful in making sure he's not crossing lines. and so when it comes to a
nuclear detonation, that would be something highly atmosphere, not aimed at any particular country. but i think when you look at the different moves right now, there is something to be said about focusing on his sixth nuclear test because it does lower the threshold in terms of a type of military response. if you imagine a long-range ballistic missile, because of the united states, japan and south korea, there could be a possibility to attempt to intercept. but by doing a nuclear test, you're going to see ambassador haley very busy if we go that route in preparing another u.n. security resolution and sanctions. >> she has been busy. john park, thank you so much for your time. >> my pleasure. coming up next, one former white house staffer says it is the single most high-profile event of the year. the white house easter egg roll. but by all accounts, the trump administration has been a tad
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it has been called one of the biggest events the white house puts on. it's an event, when the president and first lady are judged when it comes to social gatherings. i'm talking about the easter egg roll. a 128-year tradition, thousands upon thousands will attend and so far there's been questions about whether the trump administration is ready for easter egg roll on monday. >> with respect to the easter egg roll, it's a huge topic, i appreciate that. i think we're going to have an eggsellent time. you can't ask the question and not get the answer. >> i can tell you that the first lady just tweeted this. saying looking forward to hosting the annual easter egg roll at the white house on monday. with me now, a woman who knows a thing or two about these easter eggs, me linda bates, the former
director of the white house under former president clinton. she's organized eight easter egg rolls. it's great to have you on, melinda, and i read something to the effect you said if you can pull off a white house easter egg roll, you can pull off anything. why is this -- why is this so -- so complicated and sophisticated? >> it's complicated for two reasons. one is because of its size and the other is because of the complexity of all the different things that have to go on on the lawn at the same time, but let's talk for a minute about the size. we always had 30,000 people or more during the clinton years. the obamas had 37,000 people last year. you know what. it takes a lot of careful planning and logistics to move 30,000, 37,000 people on to the lawn and around the lawn and then hopefully in an orderly way off of the lawn. that all requires a tremendous amount of organization. i have seen no indication that the trump administration has prepared for that.
>> i've had conversations on this show, no offense to easter eggs, but much, much bigger issues, you know, facing this white house and with regard to not filling key agency positions, deputy positions, but that even trickles down to this huge event upcoming on monday, right? mean, it's my understanding their organizations were normally dealt with early on who have yet to hear from the white house. what do you know about that? >> well, they have not filled the job that i held, director of the white house visitor's office. that's the lead person on this event. they have a social security. i assume that she's taken over the planning for this and that's great, but it takes an enormous number of people. i had a staff of seven and countless volunteers and interns and we could never have done everything we needed to do without them this. white house doesn't appear to be set up that way. >> if they called on you to help, would you? >> i don't know. there's a thousand things that i loved about the white house that
i would do in a heartbeat. probably not this. this one is really difficult, exhausting, and really make or break you. it's pretty tough, and this is for mrs. trump. there's always interest, especially in the first one of any administration, but there's a real heightened sense of interest for this one because mrs. trump is an absent first lady. she's not present in the white house. she's not present in washington, and so people are exceptionally interested in knowing what is her style and taste. how has she decided this event should look and who should be invited to participate? and frankly it's her staff that she has chosen competent to pull it off? >> this is a huge first test, social test for the first family. >> absolutely. >> what are other comparable social events that you're looking out for? >> oh, there's nothing comparable to this. it's the single largest event that takes place at the white house every year and that quote about if you can pull off an egg roll you can do anything. it's not actually from me. it's from a person in the george
bush i administration telling the clinton transition people keep your eyes open and look out because this is the hardest thing there is at the white house, really tough. >> i'll take your word for it. before i let you go, can you tell me a good clinton egg roll story. >> my favorite one, the last one, 2000, we had an opportunity to have robert de niro come and read a children's book to the little kids on the lawn. >> oh. >> so just try to imagine standing there, a low stage, robert de niro is reading a children's story. all the little children are signature on the grass and the parents behind, and that was absolutely just an amazing experience, my favorite. >> melinda bates, we'll watch and see how it goes on monday. thank you so much. >> thanks for having me. >> thank you. coming up next, the trump administration announcing it will keep its log of white house visitors private. this is a change of course from the obama years. we'll discuss why that is coming up. [vo] quickbooks introduces rodney.
the all-new subaru impreza sedan and five-door. a car you can love no matter what road you're on. the subaru impreza. more than a car, it's a subaru. need to quickly clarify something. my last guest just mentioned that the white house has not filled the post of director of the white house visitors office. in fact, we're just now told by the white house that they have indeed filled that position. so important note there. there you go. meantime, it has been ten years since we started cnn heros, ten years. we're proud that many schools incorporated the program in their curriculum including this fifth grade teacher. >> throughout the school year
we'll set up various skype calls with various heros. >> oh, my gosh. >> they are a celebrity to my kids and as they should be. the kids come up with amazing questions. >> how long did it take you? >> how is it different? >> did you ever feel. >> when i see how excited that fifth grader is it makes me realize we're doing something right in here. >> how awesome is that. go to cnnheros.com. i'm brooke baldwin. "the lead" with james tapper starts right now. thanks, brooke. the north koreans are now celebrating a holiday that has the rest of the world on edge. "the lead" starts right now. nuclear watch. north korea marking the biggest holiday on its call rare with a u.s. aircraft carrier and the u.s. vice president heading towards the region and a stark threat to the u.s. from the regime. bombing isis. a blast visible from 20 miles away. we're now getting an idea of the impact of the