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tv   Don Lemon Tonight  CNN  August 27, 2021 10:00pm-11:00pm PDT

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this storm may take is to what happened with katrina? >> right, there's some similarities but there's also a few things that really separate these two storms. for starters, katrina started well out over the open atlantic. just to the east of florida. ida really coming up from the gulf of mexico. both are anticipated to hit louisiana, but katrina was a category 3 at landfall sustained winds about 125 miles per hour. ida is expected to make landfall as a category 4, winds in excess of 140 miles per hour possibly. so with ida the winds are expected to be much stronger. but the real question for so many people who lived through katrina is the flooding. that's what a lot of people want to know. and the one thing we'll have to keep a close eye on, anderson, specifically is the forward speed. the slower this storm is at landfall the more likely it is to produce tremendous amounts of rainfall because it can sit over that area for much longer periods of time.
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so these are the things we'll have to keep a close eye on at least over the next 36 hours. >> appreciate it, thanks. coming up next, much more on the still precarious situation in and around kabul airport. the first confirmed death of a u.s. marine. and we'll talk to a reporter of the los angeles times who was beat up by a member of the taliban. all that and more when "360" continues.
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good evening again. chris is off tonight. with the pentagon bracing for a second attack, the first american victim of yesterday's suicide bombing in kabul has now been identified. he's marine lance corporal rylee mccollum from wyoming. he was only 20 years old and has a baby due in just three weeks according to his older sister. she tells us he was on his first deployment, he was manning the airport checkpoint where the suicide bomber struck. she said he wanted to be a marine his whole life, he was living his dream. even as a toddler he carried a toy rifle in his diaper and in his cowboy boots.
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she said he wanted to teach history and be a wrestling coach when he finished his service, and of course be a new dad. there are 12 other names, 12 other heroes whose stories are yet to come. and even as the president is preparing to make condolence calls to the next of kin as we've been reporting tonight, he's been warned that another attack is likely. only days now remaining in america's longest war, and they could easily be the darkest. perspective now from cnn military analyst and retired army general wesley clark. general clark, as we begin to start learning the names and seeing the faces and hearing the stories and meeting the family members of the u.s. service members who gave their lives yesterday, it's -- it is just -- it really comes home just the pain of what has happened and also the pain that's going to have ripple effects and linger in these families' lives for the rest of their lives. >> anderson, it is just heartbreaking to see these losses. to think about what it means to
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the family members, to think about the impact on the service members who were there in the same unit doing this right now who know they're at ground zero of a terrorist attack that they may not be able to foresee coming, it takes enormous courage. it's an enormous sense of sacrifice. and my heart goes out to the men that are there and women working in that airport but also to the family members of all those who were killed but those who know their loved ones are on that mission. this is an important, vital mission. and i guess the final heartbreak for me is having watched this operation unfold from the beginning in 2001 and watch us go in there and have successes, and then to see it evolve and then the sudden collapse at the end and finally our men and
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women going back in and having to face this. it's tragic. it's heartbreaking. but, you know, i'm so proud of the men and women in uniform for having the courage and fortitude to do this. >> yeah, fortitude is such a good word, and courage as well. it's so on display in every one of them. the warning from the white house today that it's likely another terrorist attack will happen in kabul, how imminent does a threat have to be or strong does the information have to be for them to issue that kind of a warning? >> they know, they're hearing chatter. people are telling them, they're assembling a group and they're using code words to talk and there's chit-chat going back and forth and someone's bragging about the last attack and saying we've got more to follow. i mean, it's that kind of talk you're picking up from credible sources that correlate to the same people who were talking
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before the last attack. yeah, it's credible. can we find them, identify them, take them out? you can bet we're trying to do that right now. >> the difficulties, i mean, of an evacuation like this have been much discussed. the difficulties as those who are executing the evacuation begin to evacuate themselves i assume that only just -- the difficulties just get -- just increase. >> sure. we've got to start packing up now. it takes longer to get out of a situation like this than it is to sort of land and unroll everything. you've got to do it in sequence. you've got to pack it up. you've got to get everything out of there, trucks, helicopters, drones, command and control units, comms. you've got to figure out the sequence it's going in, get the aircraft. get the load plan set. it's a complete operation. and it's being done under duress
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while they're still trying to bring people out. and my understanding is the gates were mostly closed. and from the chit-chat i pick up on my networks, there's a lot of people who tried to get in who couldn't get in. and that's heartbreaking not only for those watching it and knowing some of the people from the outside but i'm sure for the marines and soldiers in there. they want to do that job, and, you know, we're relying on the taliban for the defensive perimeter on the outside, sure. but we gave them a list of the names of people that we want in there. and those are probably the same people the taliban wants to harass or maybe kill. so we know from chit-chat also that there's a network out there going after the people that work with us. so you can imagine the fear and the trepidation inside apartments in kabul and other neighboring areas where people are sort of saying, do i take the risk, do i get out, do i get to the airport? what am i going to do, how do i
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get past the taliban? >> yeah. >> just really a tragic time. >> we're just learning right now that the u.s. embassy in kabul again warned u.s. citizens at a number of gates at the airport to, quote, leave immediately, citing security threats. the alert advised u.s. citizens to avoid traveling to the airport and to avoid airport gates. do you think this will just keep up until the 31st, essentially not being able to go to the gates? >> well, i think we've got to find some other means, and certainly there's still people working on the ground in kabul. there are contractors. there are people who are afghans who work for us, got some americans still on the ground and their plainclothed guys able to pick them up and get them to the right locations. and the gates could be open just to let a group through. so we're going to do everything we can to get people out. but anderson, think of the enormity of this task. we've evacuated over 100,000 people, and that's very commendable.
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and we did it, boom, we put those troops in there and we got this things going in a hostile environment, but we probably have 1 to 2 million afghans who want out. they're trying to get out through pakistan. they're trying to get out through uzbekistan, but no matter how many we take out, there'll be many more. there are judges, administrators we work with, people who speak english, people who worked with the government. they don't trust what's going to happen next. they and their families need to leave. >> yeah. general clark, i appreciate you being with us tonight. thank you. for a closer look at what it's like right now in kabul we turn to someone who's seen this final chapter unfold up close, marcus yam. marcus, what is the mood like in kabul after yesterday's attack, especially as the white house is warning of another possible
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terror attack in kabul being likely? >> the mood -- i mean kabul is pretty quiet today. as we drove around and actually went to the airport today to see what it looked like. there was still afghans standing around looking to get into the airport. but as we make our way towards even the main civilian entrance of the airport or even toward the east gate, the taliban fighters have actually moved away from their checkpoint and actually have moved out altogether. and as you walk -- so the entire area leading up to the gates are empty now basically, devoid of people basically for the most part. >> is that because the taliban -- you said they moved away from checkpoints, but are they stopping people from going up? >> no, i think they actually moved away in a sense they've created a bigger circle around the airport. so i think they've just given -- are giving, you know, airport
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security forces and american security forces space in a way. >> i knew you were at the airport in the days leading up to the explosion. you took pictures at the abbey gate where the attack happened. we're showing some of them. can you just describe the scene and the security there before the blast? >> i mean, the scene is like any other scene. you know, refugees were going in. it was very calm, somewhat orderly. everybody was hopeful. you know, everybody was happy to be there. we're calmly, patiently waiting to get a turn. you know, in terms of security, it was kind of all over the place. i mean, like, nobody was checking anybody's bags or doing any checks on the way into this area. and civilians have to go through a taliban checkpoint before coming in here, and the taliban didn't really do any security checks coming in.
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>> so these people were basically unchecked. nobody had really done a thorough search of them until the u.s. did. >> correct. >> and this area people were happy to be there. is this an area people knew they were going to get out or these people who still were not sure if their documents would be accepted? >> i mean, i think there's a sense of uncertainty, but i think there's a common belief that once you got past the taliban and past, you know, into british and american military checks and the checkpoints, you'd be basically in the airport even though this is not part of the airport yet. >> you returned after the explosion, and i just want to show some of what you -- some of the images that you took. i think some of these are also from outside the hospital. what did you hear from people on the ground? >> i mean, we spoke to -- i spoke to one survivor that basically was about -- he said
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he was seven to ten meters away from the blast. he said there was a flash, and he blacked out. and i guess he fell into the canal part of that area. i mean, he fell into the canal and he didn't remember much after that. but he did remember waking up with a piece of human flesh on his shoulder, and it was just utter madness. >> and obviously the death toll went up today, from an afghan official. last week, you were punched, beaten up by members of the taliban. you wrote about it for tthe "l.a. times." part of that account you said someone tugged on my camera strap and felt the connection from a fist to the side of my head. a taliban soldier had emerged and sucker punched me.
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he started screaming in the local language pointing at our cameras. i mean, it sounded terrifying. what happened next, and do you fear this is a specter of things to come? >> i mean, it's a sign of how volatile things can get ultimately. i mean, i had thought of a complaint to the taliban spokesperson, and for the most part he seemed pretty unapologetic and mentioned we should just use -- and they'd introduced this kind of media accreditation system and it's basically a big white placard we have to carry around now in order to do our work. and i've tried this for a couple times now, and it's -- i've had mixed results with it. some taliban fighters recognize it, some don't really care about it and most tell me not to take pictures. >> marcus, i appreciate you taking the time to talk to us. thank you. >> thank you for having me on. >> now we want you to meet a u.s. army veteran and gold star
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wife whose husband died in afghanistan in 2012. as you might imagine they're now desperate to get out. her name is fatima, and we're not going to provide her last time or her location because we want to keep her family members as safe as possible. i first spoke to her earlier today on my show, full circle. and we were so struck by what she had to say and her situation that i wanted to continue that conversation with you here. so fatima, thank you so much for coming back. i appreciate you giving us the time. you immigrated to the u.s. from afghanistan i believe it was in the late '90s. you eventually joined the military in 2008 after you graduated high school, served overseas. that's where you met your husband who was killed while serving in afghanistan. talk about your family. they've spent, you say, decades helping the u.s. military as well. how many family members are still now trying to get out?
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>> right now i had at least two different family members from my mother's side come to me and say, hey, i had eight years in kandahar and i have no paperwork or i had my paperwork and it was burned. and there are a lot of people just in search of this certain paperwork that you need because they're being told if you don't have this specific thing they're not going to accept you. and some of them take that and take that as a broken heart and kind of keep it moving. but i want to say thank you for having me here again, and i think my family i know is not -- like i said before we're not going to be able to get everybody out. we can't get everybody out of the country, either. and we just need to take a breather and understand kind of our capacity but -- sorry. >> your brother has a u.s. passport and was in kabul.
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he stayed longer. he could have gotten out, but he stayed longer in order to help other family members who were in the process to get a special immigrant visa. was he able to get them out? >> he was able to get them out, and that's something i'm really happy about. he waited weeks and he went with them to the gates every single day, and every day he got an opportunity that was like, hey, you're an american citizen, we can get you on a plane, and he was like no, no, no, because i know once i leave these guys are going to be left to just kind of go on their own. >> wow. how many days was he at the gates for, or was he going to the gates? >> he was going to the gates for five days. and every day early in the morning because that's when everybody gets there. early in the morning and they leave at night. he told me he took pictures of one of the nights and he was like, i was at that gate for 24 hours, and we still didn't get anywhere. and it was because he was an american citizen, but because
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they were siv applicants, that they were like, no, we're not accepting that right now. and if just kind of -- the gates -- as different nations take over the gate control they also say, okay, no, we're only accepting this person, we're only accepting these people. so it's like the acceptance kind of goes -- it's very fluid and nobody really knows when, so that's why there is this slew of people at the gates, i feel, in my personal opinion. >> when i talked to you first earlier today you talked about heartbreak. and i was thinking about it afterward, and i wanted to ask you about it tonight because in some ways i can imagine your heart breaking in all different kinds of ways. i mean, as a veteran hearing of the deaths of 13 service members, 12 marines, and i believe an army soldier, your heart must break as a veteran, as somebody who lost a husband in afghanistan, there's that heartache as well with what's
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happened now to afghanistan, to have family members there, some who won't be able to get out. and as an afghan yourself, someone who was born there, it's -- how do you do it? how are you doing? >> i am very tired. i was just going to say i'm very tired, but it's -- you got to kind of push through because i know my tiredness doesn't matter. i was actually just talking to one of the extraction teams and they're like, hey, man, i'm going to take an hour nap and i know that girl has been up for the past 18 hours because i've been up with her, so just, i think that is keeping me going the amount of -- the amount of support and the amount of hard work that the veterans on ground are really working on and the military on ground that i'm in contact with that are doing their own different extractions.
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it really helps you kind of get some motivation, and you see past your -- you see past your feelings. my heart is absolutely broken for the 12 families that are going to get the worst knock on their door. i know when i got that knock i shut the door back in the person's face and then i felt awful about it because i didn't want to shut a door in someone's face. i didn't want to believe it. my heart aches for those families. >> you know what that knock on the door is like. >> yeah. it's terrifying. you see that car and you're just like, this is just a dream. it's going to go away, it's a dream. i did that to myself for a year thinking everything was a dream. but the issue that -- sorry. those marines that we lost, they -- i was in contact with
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people on ground and the marines were the only ones who were outside the gate. no story is going to tell about the amazing things that they did do and how they really were trying to make things easy for the afghan people to get through. and these are my people, and it makes me -- it breaks my heart that they lost their lives trying to help my people get to safety. that's -- yeah. the veteran in me is crying. the afghan in me is crying because all the innocent lives that were lost, and the fact that, why is there continuously lives being lost? the gold star wife in me is sad for all the people that have to get that phone call, and they have to get that face-to-face meeting with two officials that just show up at your door. it's very jumbled, and then having to tell my family members i can't help you. i'm so sorry, i have no capacity
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to help you. and my cousin had sent an e-mail about my uncle saying, can you get my daughter out, please get my daughter out. and i'm like, i wish i could, i really do. i think that's -- a million broken pieces, but we're good. >> fatima, i appreciate you talking to us tonight and giving us a window into what you and so many families are going through. and i appreciate your service, and i'm sorry for your losses. and thank you for being with us. >> thank you so much. >> sadly, we've just learned the name of the second of 13 service members killed yesterday. he is marine corporal daegan page. he was just 23 years old. he was raised in red oak, iowa, and omaha, nebraska, as well.
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his family says he was a boy scout, a hockey fan with a love of hot dogs and real soft spot for dogs as well. he was a dog person. daegan, they say, will always be remembered for his tough outer shell and his giant heart. and for being a jungle gym to his younger brothers and sisters. marine corporal daegan page. next, a biographer of president biden joins us. talking about what is driving the president. and a second embassy warning has just gone out for americans to stay away from the airport right now. we'll be back. the first full prescription strength gel for powerful arthritis pain relief... voltaren the joy of movement do you struggle with occasional nerve aches, weakness or discomfort in your hands or feet? introducing nervive nerve relief from the world's number 1 selling nerve care company. as we age, natural changes to our nerves occur
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as we reported before the break, the u.s. embassy in kabul is once again warning americans to immediately leave the gates outside hamid karzai international airport. it's a chilling repeat of the warning that preceded yesterday's bombing. it's yet more pressure on the biden administration. here to talk about how this president operates in moments like this, cnn contributor and author of "joe biden, the life, the run and what matters now." evan, we spoke briefly yesterday how personal these deaths are for the president and obviously his son beau was a veteran who later lost his battle with cancer. he talked about the black hole that's left by a death like that. how do you think he plans to approach these conversations with these family members? it's obviously something he has experience with. >> he does. it's the first time he's doing it now as commander in chief, but it's been part of his public life for a long time.
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he's sort of developed some techniques he really uses when he talks to people in this situation. one of the things, he never says i know exactly what you're feeling because he doesn't. he says, i can say i know some of what you're feeling. one thing he recommends to people as he did in his own life, he said keep a pad and pen by your bed, and as the time goes by you'll make a mark and rate your day. give yourself an assessment how you're doing, how are you struggling, how are you recovering because only then will you be able to sense if there's any improvement over time. he gave that advice to families who lost children in sandy hook, connecticut. and he will draw on his own experience. he said to a woman named amanda barry who had been kidnapped and then released, he said i was basically your age when i lost my wife and my daughter, and he said, here i am, i'm still here. and she said later, just hearing him say that i am still here,
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there's something valuable in that and if he can get through it, maybe i can, too. >> you pointed out, the card he carries around in his pocket, this is the first time it's been updated, a card with the number of u.s. troops killed on his watch. >> it's true. this is the first time since he's taken office he has now deaths in afghanistan that will be reflected on that card he carries. there's this very personal piece of this for him. one of the things i think gives form in his mind how to deal with grief is something that came to him a few years ago. it was vicki kennedy who gave him a letter that had been written by joseph kennedy, who after all lost four of his children. including john f. den kennedy and robert kennedy. and he gave advice to people who said, look, when you've lost a loved one you should think about the years they might have had, what they might have done with those years and then take that
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on your as your own mission and say i will do and advance those causes. and in a way you've heard that language in the way joe biden talks about this country, about grieving, about trying to find purpose, as he so often says. and there's a larger meaning in there about trying to find your way forward. it's not only a method of survival but also about finding something bigger than what has fallen. >> this is also probably the biggest challenge -- i don't know. you know his career very well. would you say this is the biggest challenge he's faced in his entire career? >> i think it is. he's had moments of political failure in his career, moments where his political career might have come to an end. but this is something of a much higher order, a graver order. this is about trying to fulfill the expectations people had for him as a candidate, as a president. somebody who ran on foreign policy experience. and then also it is a period of anguish, you know, for the
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country. a war that has gone on for 20 years. a war as we now know he was deeply opposed to for a long time, tried to get out of there. and now is still in the teeth of it. you know, the storm is still raging, anderson. as you said, they are giving warnings to people in kabul to stay away because of an imminent attack. and so the next four days may bring more names of the kind that we've already begun to hear tonight, and this is going to be a process really for the whole country to be thinking about the cost, the sacrifices the united states has made over the last 20 years. >> evan, appreciate it. thank you. we've just learned the identity of a third u.s. member killed in the attack in kabul. u.s. navy corpsman maxton soviak. we don't have a picture yet. they say he was proud to be a marine. they say his final words were to his mother over facetime. he was telling her good-bye, she told him to be safe, and he said, quote, don't worry, mom,
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my guys got me, they won't let anything happen to me. they say when he was younger he was part of a state champion wrestling team and state final football team two years in a row. in a statement the family writes he leaves behind 12 brothers and sisters that are all hurting terribly. our thoughts and our prayers are with them and all those suffering. we'll be right back. a lot of snacks are packed with air but not planters nuts. our dry roasted peanuts
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it's moving day. and while her friends are doing the heavy lifting, jess is busy moving her xfinity internet and tv services. it only takes about a minute. wait, a minute? but what have you been doing for the last two hours? ...delegating? oh, good one. move your xfinity services without breaking a sweat. xfinity makes moving easy. go online to transfer your services in about a minute. get started today. as we reported, white house officials say that another attack in kabul is likely and that the next few days of the mission may be the most dangerous.
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the attack in kabul and the pullout of troops comes as republican and democrats prepare for a bruising election that could flip both houses of congress. already calls from some republicans for the president's resignation. earlier tonight i spoke with republican adam kinzinger working with the house select committee investigating the capitol riot about his criticisms about president biden's actions in afghanistan. >> i think there needs to be accountability, and i think frankly president biden needs to take better ownership of this. people have used the kennedy bay of pigs analogy where he took full responsibility and actually his poll numbers recovered, because that's what americans want. they want leaders who take responsibility. so a firing or removal of a national security leader should not be a kind of a scapegoat. ultimately president biden owns this, but we need to know what happened. >> correspondent jessica dean now has more of the reaction on capitol hill. >> there will be a day of reckoning. >> reporter: republican
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criticism of president joe biden intensifying over the crisis in afghanistan. house minority leader kevin mccarthy promising to hold the administration accountable but pushing back for now on his fellow republicans who are calling for biden's resignation or impeachment. >> right now in the next five days everyone's responsibility should only be focused on getting the americans out. >> reporter: with democrats in the majority, republicans lack the power to launch investigations. but the gop is already looking ahead to the midterm elections and trying to make afghanistan a permanent stain on biden's presidency. with the number three house republican, representative elise stefanik writing in a tweet, biden is, quote, unfit to be commander in chief. democrats largely sticking with the president and pushing back against republicans. >> there are a lot of people in this body who wanted the military to stay in afghanistan more, another year, five years, 10 years, 20 years, forever. and they're critical. they didn't like a decision by president biden to end this war. they tended to be quiet when
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president trump did the deal with the taliban to pull out in may. but now that president biden is in place they think we should stay. >> reporter: but some more democrats are more critical. new jersey democratic senator bob menendez said in a statement the united states, quote, cannot trust the taliban with american security. pennsylvania representative susan wild writing in a tweet, quote, the evacuation process appears to have been egregiously mishandled, calling for, quote, answers and accountability. the white house saying it does not have any direct response to members of congress. >> it is easy to throw stones or be a critic from the outside. it's harder to be in the arena and make difficult decisions. >> jessica dean joins us now from capitol hill. is it clear what mccarthy has in mind when he says there will be a day of reckoning? because we should also point out it was president trump and mccarthy backed him on the deal with the taliban. >> reporter: right.
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and he was kind of pushed on that earlier today, anderson. and he said, well, you know, this was different. there were specifications and that sort of thing, kind of went back and forth on it. but the bottom line is we don't know the specifics of what this day of reckoning might be. it is worth noting that he did not call for biden's resignation or for his impeachment. and it's also worth noting how we saw so many house republicans and even some senate republicans bandying about impeachment, kind of we were seeing it weaponized and used almost not flippantly but kind of bandied about and weaponized in this way. that's been evolving over the years. that was worth noting as well. what is important here, though, is no doubt republicans want to make this an issue in 2022. as we noted in the piece, you know, they don't have the power right now to set up any investigations, to get any investigations going because democrats control both the house and senate but that could shift in 2022. and there's no doubt they want to zero in on this issue as they
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move toward the midterms. >> jessica dean, appreciate it. thank you. i want to get perspective now from cnn contributor garret graff. you heard minority leader mccarthy say there will be a, quote, day of reckoning. what do you think republicans do after the august 31st deadline? >> it's hard to say. but it's fascinating to try to watch the incoherence. in that press conference today mccarthy simultaneously said there should not be any troops left in afghanistan but at the same time argued we should be sending more troops to hold the bagram air force base. there is no coherent policy that we are seeing from any of the president's critics on the democratic side or the republican side right now. >> this has been certainly chaotic, messy for the biden administration, tragic. 13 service members killed yesterday. i was talking to congressman kinzinger last hour and he was saying that the president needs to take better ownership of this.
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>> well, he has -- by the time president biden inherited this problem in january, there were nothing but bad options left. and i think that's really important to understand. that so many of the pundits and critics that we have seen over the last two weeks failed in their own attempts over the last two decades to bring any of this problem to a conclusion, and they have kicked this down the road for four presidential administrations now. all of whom have sort of tacitly admitted that the reason we're staying in afghanistan is that we know this will happen the moment that we try to leave. and so there are some tactical critiques that you can make of the way that biden has handled the last couple of weeks. but at the end of the day everyone for the last 18 years has known this is where this problem was going to end up, that we were going to lose afghanistan someday. >> democratic congressman susan
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wild on the house foreign affairs committee has vowed to investigate what happened in terms of any intelligence failures. how do you think investigations and hearings into all this are going to play out in the coming weeks and months? >> well, obviously, they're going to try to use this as a bludgeon against the president to try to call into question his administration's competence. however, i do think it is also important to understand -- and jessica dean was just talking about this a moment ago -- just how poisonous and partisan this criticism is at this exact moment. you don't have to go back too far, anderson, to see a moment where if terrorists had killed 13 americans, the republicans' complaint would be with the terrorists and not with the president of the united states. >> garret graff, thank you very much. we're just learning now that
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american forces have conducted an air strike against what's described as an isis-k planner in afghanistan. for more, i want to go to cnn's orrin leiberman at the pentagon. what do you know, orrin? >> reporter: we just got a statement from u.s. central command which governs afghanistan, and this of course after president joe biden vowed he would respond to isis-k and the attack they carried out that killed 13 service members, wounded more than a dozen others as well as killing scores of afghan civilians. that statement is a short one, but it's to the point. i'll read it in full here. u.s. military forces conducted an over the horizon counterterrorism operation today against an isis-k planner. the unmanned air strike occurred in a province of afghanistan. initial indications is that we killed the target. we know of no civilian casualties. biden had promised there was some information about isis-k and the planning and carrying out of the attack. and here the military says they have found that isis-k planner and carried out a drone strike from over the horizon to kill that isis-k planner. the administration had said all along it would retain over the
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horizon capabilities, the capability to carry out strikes from outside of afghanistan on counterterrorism missions. here the biden administration is showing the force of that capability. in terms of where this was carried out in the province that is just essentially east-southeast of kabul where the attack was carried out. it is a province we've heard of before in a very specific isis-k scenario. it was here in april of 2017 that the trump administration and central command there carried out a strike using what was called or what is called the gbu 43-b, massive ordinance bomb, otherwise known as the mother of all bombs, also against isis-k. it seems again it is an area where there is an isis-k presence and that perhaps feeding into some of the information, the intel that led the biden administration to carry out this strike fairly quickly here, within 36 hours of that terrorist attack at the abbey gate of hamid karzai international airport, the one that killed at least 13 u.s.
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service members. the administration is showing it will respond, it has responded and now we're waiting to see what information there is and if the administration plans on carrying out more strikes against isis-k as the evacuation is ongoing. >> orrin, is it likely the u.s. would release information at a later time, more about who the target of this was? >> reporter: i think that might be very likely. they clearly knew who they were looking for in terms of an isis-k planner. that's a specific individual. this isn't a generic strike against isis-k assets, forces, capabilities. it seems the military knew who they were looking for, knew where he was. and remember, it's not as easy as finding somebody at a specific moment at a specific date. you need to establish a person's patterns, habits, where to look for them, especially when you're only based in kabul essentially and then the capability to carry out that strike. not only the carrying out of that strike but the
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acknowledgement of it so soon after it happens, i would think, indicates the administration may be putting out more information about who they struck at this point. >> it's interesting we got word just before this that they were telling any americans at the gate to leave immediately, perhaps linked to the knowledge of this strike taking place. coming up. some of tonight's other headlines. what a florida judge said today about the order from florida governor ron desantis banning mask mandates in schools. that's next. it's where safe and daring seamlessly intersect. it's understated, yet over-delivers. it is truly the mercedes-benz of sports sedans. visit your local mercedes-benz dealer today for exceptional lease and financing offers. ♪ ♪
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a florida judge ruled today that governor ron desantis did not have the authority to impose a ban on mask mandates in the schools. the ruling comes after a four-day hearing in the case of parents from several florida counties who filed a lawsuit challenging the governor's executive order.
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her school district fought the governor's ban and she joins me now. superintendent simon, the judge in the case said the governor didn't have the authority for a blanket mandatory ban. a spokesperson for the governor fired back saying the ruling was made on, quote, incoherent justifications, not based on science or facts. i'm wondering what your reaction is tonight? >> well, we are -- um -- we're actually very pleased with judge cooper's decision. um, many of the points that he brought up aligned with our concerns and the points that we are, also, looking at when we -- we have to have our response -- um -- to the governor and to the commissioner of education. >> the -- the governor said he is going to appeal the ruling. ten school districts in florida, more than 50% of students in the state, have mask mandates like yours with no opt-out option. do you think the governor -- i mean, is he out of touch with the state? >> i -- i think the fact that over 50% of florida students are now in the same mask mandates
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that we have within our district says something. i also think that, based on time and how our schools are having to respond to covid, i would assume that many other districts are going to take a hard look at their own mandates and decide if they need to switch from optional to a mask mandate to help slow the spread of covid. it's impacting our learning. it's impacting our quarantine rates and our student-positivity rates. and those of us who need to run school systems are very much concerned about the safety of our children and our staff. >> we -- we have obviously seen a lot of school board meetings, screaming parents, you know, yelling at -- at doctors who have testified as they pull away in cars. what are you hearing from the -- i mean, what is the -- i don't know if you, you know, heard from the majority of parents. but what -- do most parents back the mask mandates? >> in our community, most parents are supporting the mask mandate. um, we have the support of our medical professionals. we have the university of florida here with medical
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professionals who have been advising us on how to respond to covid and our safety for staff and students. the parents -- the majority of parents are in agreement. we have a small group that are very upset, and they're very vocal. and it -- it is, you know, obviously, unpleasant. many times in our board meetings when we have people share their frustration in an unpleasant way. but for the most part, the majority of our families are happy and, you know, they want their kids in school and this is how we keep them in school and we have the direct instruction and that's working for us right now. although, we are still concerned with the amount of positivity rates, we have over 420 students right now positive. that number keeps growing and we have over 1,600 kids who are quarantined and that means if they are quarantined, they are not getting that direct instruction and it will impact their learning. >> yeah. i mean, just the logistical challenges that you have to face. if a student in a class turns --
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you know, tests positive, what then happens? what are the ripple effects of that? >> so, you know, our principals are supposed to be instructional leaders. and we do have school nurses but our school nurses are dealing with, you know, the responsibilities of being a school nurse. but now, they are taking on the role of, also, testing for covid. # so with those two, the principal and the nurse, they are testing. they are contact tracing. they're quarantining. we bring our students back after five days to test them, again. hopefully, they are negative and they can get back into the classroom. and get into instruction. our principals are needing to make sure that we have plans on our campus platforms so student who aren't in school can have access to instructional material online. it's really taken on a whole, nother aspect and job responsibility and stretched thin. >> superintendent simon, i really appreciate your time
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and -- and all you're doing. thank you. >> thank you. just ahead. the latest on the california recall election next month. governor gavin newsom already had a tenuous lead when vice president kamala harris had to cancel her event today. the details and a live report, when we come back.
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