tv New Day With John Berman and Brianna Keilar CNN May 17, 2022 4:00am-5:00am PDT
all right. good morning to our viewers here in the united states and all around the world. it is tuesday, may 17th. i'm john berman, brianna is off this morning. chief white house correspondent kaitlan collins is with us. >> thank you, thank you. >> and where you normally are, the white house, we have live pictures of the white house. very shortly, president biden will gadepart for buffalo to me the families of the mass shooting there. the president will give us a preview of what the president will say, he will condemn, quote, the terrorism motivated by the hateful and perverse ideology that tears at the soul of our nation and to give no sage harbor to recreate the lies of racial animus that radicalize
and divide us. he will also call for federal legislation to keep guns from the mentally ill. there is cell phone video the moment the suspect was taken in by police. he spent months carefully planning it's attack. >> he was here. he was here in early march. then again, we know he was here on friday basically doing reconnaissance on the area. >> a manager at tops, the store where this attack took place, tells the news, he was was actually seen the day before the attack. he was wearing the asame tacticl jum jumpsuit. he was told to leave because he looked like he was bothering customers. and we'll have more on the
disturbing details in a moment as well as how he was easily able to purchase a firearm, including the one he used to gun down ten people, despite the fact he'd been given a mental health evaluation less than a year ago. cnn has obtained a photo of two of the rifles that the shooter brought with him to the scene in buffalo. and writing appears all over then, including a racial slur and a phrase "white lives matter." cnn anchor victor blackwell on the ground in buffalo tracking the latest developments. victor, a whole bunch of information coming to light just over the last several hours. give us that. >> reporter: john, an extraordinary amount of details about the extent of the planning that went into this attack on saturday. you heard from the police commissioner, that not only was the alleged shooter here in buffalo in march. but according to social media posts that have been attributed to this suspect, he was in the store, in tops supermarket, on march 8th, he says at noon, 2:00
and 4:00 so many times that the person he noted as the black armed security guard asked why he was coming in and out. and he lied and said he was there to get information for the kr census. but on the social media posts there are maps of the stores noting the exit, the bakery, the pharmacy. he noted the races of the people who were there in the store. and in one post, he wrote -- let's put it up on the screen, i'm going to have to till that security guard at tops. i hope he doesn't kill me or even hurt me instantly. well, we know that security guard, aaron salter, at least on saturday, no confirmation that it was the same person in march fired shots at the attacker after the shots in the parking lot. but because of that body armor, they did not hurt the attacker. the shots were fired back. and salter was one of those ten victims. now, you mentioned the photos of weapons. cnn has obtained photos of two rifles that were in the vehicle of the shooter with writing on
those weapons including the phrase "white lives matter." on the main rifle that was used in the shooting, the bushmaster x-15 according to investigators. owner of vintage firearms where that weapon was purchased said that the suspect passed a background check. did not stand out among his other customers, despite having that medical valuation, after the threat in june of '2021, when he was in high school. so many details coming out about the planning that went into this for months before the attack here on saturday, john. >> so many details, victor, are just chilling. so chilling. i do want to keep the focus on the victims here and that includes the ten deceased. the ten who were killed, but also the survivors, victor, who will live, i think with this experience of what happened. we're hearing from an 8-year-old
survivor. what can you tell us? >> reporter: yeah, her name is london thomas. she was here in the store on saturday when this attack happened. she was here with her parents. they were buying groceries for a cookout. it was a beautiful day on saturday. they were going to have a cookout, a birthday party. shots fired. she and her father were separated from her mother. they went to the back of the store and hid in a freezer. listen to the story. >> we went to the back of the store where the milk is, and like, it was the door was locked and we could not get out until like the manager opened the door. then we had to go out the back door. and the cops lead us out. i was scared to my mom, i don't know what happened to her because she was at the front.
i was at the back. i didn't know where she was. i thought she was gone. >> reporter: unimaginable. and now these parents had to explain to their daughter what happened. and are living in this now landscape where you have to teach your children where to go, what to do if this happens. the three of them all safe, we know that counseling is available for the survivors and those who were there. the governor has allocated $2.8 million for not only the victims and their families but for things like the counseling that's going to be needed in this community. john. >> what a blessing, what a miracle that she's alive, victor. but what an affront. what an absolute tragic affront that she had to live through, to witness it, and imagine what that will do to her for the rest of her life. >> reporter: victor, thank you for your reporting this morning.
>> in addition to the people forced to witness the attack only 22 people saw the actual live stream from the camera that was on the suspect's helmet during the mass shooting but millions more have seen it since. facebook did not remove it for more than ten hours. cnn's donie o'sullivan joins us for more. this is something more than what we saw in new zealand, live streamed. they wanted it to go live. this terrorism theater. and up there on twitch for only a matter of moments, the company says they removed it within two minutes of the first gunshot. why did it remain on so many websites? >> yeah, this was made for social media massacre. the suspect streamed live on this websites twitch owned by amazon. the company said two minutes, two minutes after the violence began, they had taken down the video. that still was not quick enough. the people watching us, we
believe 20 people or so, they were from dark corners of the internet. where the suspect posted the links to this twitch are on the chats, a lot where the hate-filled forums online. and somebody watching that, possibly a few more than one person downloaded the video as it was happening in realtime. and then we went back, we went through fortran, which is referenced by the document posted by the suspect. he was influenced by what will he saw on fortran, somebody started posting saying hey, i have a good of this video. that video got uploaded, everywhere, around the internet. it's been viewed millions of times. it lives on. >> it just shows you how long has changed after what happened in new zealand. afterwards, we saw tech companies wanting to make sure when something like this happens it gets removed, it gets removed quickly, but even when the
original site removes it, it's distributed everywhere. >> yeah, i think tech companies have a responsibility here but what we will say, we have to account for the fact that there are a lot of sick people out there who keep upload these videos and who want people to see this. some people were slow to take down links, slow to take down others, they're all up against it. there are so many gad faith people, i guess, online, who want to post this. one important thing to remember, the suspect in his documents he said he was influenced, inspired by the video he found on fortran. the video of the new zealand attack. when these videos percolate out there, when they continue to live online they can inspire future violence. >> such a circle, donnie, thank you. a huge political day, voters lining on for primary voting in several key states, a lot of
eyes on the swing state, or the swing commonwealth of pa pap and pivotal race for governor and senator. kristen holmes joins us live outside a polling station. >> reporter: good morning, john we saw the first group of voters go in to cast their ballots, later today, david mccormick, one of those candidates on the republican side scheduled to vote here. that race remains wide ohm. you have mccormick, a former hedge fund ceo. you have celebrity doctor mehmet oz endorsed by donald trump and you have late political novelist and ultra conservative kathy barnette. and we watched all of them making their final appeals to the state of pennsylvania, excuse me, the commonwealth of pennsylvania. yesterday, mccormick doing small events we saw barnette answering questions about her background. and we saw former president trump calling into a rally for oz, reiterating his support for
him. i will tell you, i have talked to advisers from all three campaigns, they all say especially the same thing, they feel good, they feel it could break any way. now on the democratic side there's less drama and still uncertainty as lieutenant governor john fetterman who had been leading in the polls has still -- still recovering from a stroke he had last week. now, he had a comfortable lead over his opponent including moderate representative conor lamb, but this adds a level of what is next, given his health situation right now. and the last race i want to point to is the governor's race. particularly on the republican side where you see trump-endorsed election denier doug mastriano, this has him him and barnette republican strategists pulling their hair out, they may not be able to pull out the general and the ultra conservatives might cost
them a vital seat. >> kristen, if all candidates feel good, i promise you one of them is lying. that's just a map issue more than anything else. >> you're probably right. the polls are all over the place, john. they really are, we see all three candidates leading in different polls. >> we have no idea what's going to happen. >> if you call pennsylvania state, you have to put a quarter in jake tapper -- >> tapper gets an electric shock. north carolina is fascinating to watch because the key gop primary is going to be decided along with the fate of a battled house republican madison cawthorn, cnn's eva is joining pu. >> reporter: good morning, from
north carolina, so many key watches to watch here including the race. i've been tracking the primary. i was on the trail with congressman ted bud, a third term republican leading in the republican primary here. he was endorsed by former president trump last year and that really changed things in terms of getting him name recognition across the state, as well as helping with fundraising. he has relied heavily on the second amendment. he's an immigration hard-liner, he is a member of the freedom caucus. and still notably, he won't say that president biden won the 2020 election. take a listen. >> and that i have great constitutional concerns about 2020, i don't think it's a partisan issue whether somebody is a democrat unaffiliated or a republican, we should trust our institutions. i fully support voter i.d. north carolinians overwhelming supported that across party lines and an activist judge
overturned it. >> you won't say that president biden won the election? >> i will say he is the current president and i have constitutional concerns about 2020. >> reporter: so the congressman is voting here in just a few hours. he's competing against former governor pat mccrory and mark walker. if successful, he will compete against democratic you nominee, sh shearry easeasley, and madiso cawthorn as well. kaitlan. >> thank you so much. >> i want to bring in a person no stranger to primaries. al franken. thank you for joining me. i wonder what you're watching because there are implications on the line, not just north
carolina, pennsylvania all over the place. >> i'm really looking at pennsylvania in a way because that state used to produce moderate republicans, thornburgh, specter, heinz, people like that. and this is trump. and this party has become trump's party, these candidates -- first of all, oz, he picked oz, i guess, because none of these candidates really live until penns pennsylvania. at least dr. oz was in tv land where trump lived so that's who he picks. he's a celebrity. and i got to tell you, none of those three people is actually feeling good today. feeling comfortable. i've been in a very, very tight race. i won mile -- a called it by 312 votes. >> what you're referencing mehmet oz and david mccormick
have been faced accusations of carpetbaggers because they moved back. and kathy barnette, she's been there eight years. >> yeah. >> there's questions about her background, a lot of unanswered questions. >> it's interesting, you talk about this being a trump primary, david mccormick has got a lot of trump staffers working for him, hope hicks and others. mehmet oz has trump's endorsement. and kathy barnette, by the way, is running one of the more trumpy campaigns. they're each trying to grab a slice of that. i suppose it's what matters the most, the actual trump endorsement. >> guess who claims victory no matter who wins? >> and that will be? >> trump. s see? either way, it's a maga person that's going to win that race. >> i wonder what democrats are sitting back thinking watching this. you think some say, that's
great, let's have the farthest right candidate win this primary because it's easier for us to defeat them but the political headwinds are against democrats right now. i think the question that some democrats have put out there is, what if the candidate that we want to win today wins, and come november, they actually become governor or the senator from pennsylvania? >> well, you remember 2010 was a very bad year. but we dodged a bullet because they picked some nut cases. and, you know, in nevada, and in delaware. so, we're kind of -- we're still rooting for the nut cases today. >> what do you think of the democratic -- let's talk about pennsylvania. in a way it represents a microcosm of the types of races you might see around the country. john fetterman the lieutenant governor who just had a stroke, by the way, and we hope he's doing well. >> yeah. >> seen as the more progressive of the candidates. you have conor lamb who is more of a centrist candidate.
in oregon, primaries in oregon, we have more centrist candidates. which way do you think the wind is blowing in terms of the party? >> well, it feels like fetterman was very up in that race. we don't know how the stroke is going to affect it. and conor lamb won in a pretty conservative district and a hero for doing that in the special. but i don't think that carries over, fetterman captured people's imagination. i imagine he'll do it. >> do you think this shows some strength for the more progressive way of the party, as he gets can closer to the midterms? >> i think it kind of shows the division in the party. and i just hope that we can bridge it. and i hope that we pick up some senate seats, because you saw, we didn't bridge some of those gaps when we had the majority by
just one seat. so, i hope we're picking up enough so that we can get things done with 53 votes, or 52 votes. >> and why weren't democrats able to bridge that cap before, do you think? >> because you have bernie sanders and joe manchin. and mainly, joe manchin, is the answer for not getting the stuff done. and i don't know. i wasn't there. i think we should have been able to get some very, very popular pieces of -- you don't want to say build back better because that has such a negative conoatation now. you think about medicare and negotiating for drugs. or universal pre-k. or subsidizing child care. if people heard what was in the package. they've heard -- i've been calling since october for to us put those on the floor individually so people can see what they are. and now, it's just gotten too late. >> senator al franken, great to
see you. >> good to see you. >> thanks for joining us. >> nice to meet you. >> nice to meet you as well. filling in from the white house, just hanging outside making sure john is doing it. >> trying. big day, election night in america with primary races in five key states, four states and a commonwealth. huge uncertainty in the race. it promises to be a dramatic night. special live coverage begins at 7:00 eastern. just moments from now, president biden heads to buffalo to meet with the victims of the racist attack at the supermarket there. we're getting new information about what he will say. plus in ukraine, mariupol is on the brink this morning. and we'll tell you why ukraine is giving up that fight. and -- >> what if anything in this op-ed was incorrect? >> nothing. every word of it is true. >> amber heard is back on the stand today in johnny depp's $50
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♪ in moments from now, president biden will head to buffalo with first lady jill biden to grieve with the families of the victims in the deadly racist attack. joining us now to preview that trip is deputy homeland adviser at the national security council josh gelpert. josh for joining us. can you tell us what the president brings to buffalo? >> reporter: thanks for having me today. i think today is convey hopeful. today how awful it is to see another communicaty devastated t
just by mass violence, but there's policy work, strategy work that we do here at the white house every day, in some ways, the focus for today will be to grieve with a grieving community. >> we know that the president is expected to call for stricter gun control measures while he's on the ground. what can you tell us what that is expected to look like? >> look, the president has been very clear about this, we have a firearms problem in this country. this weekend drove that home, not just in buffalo, but elsewhere in the country. so, you'll hear more from the president about how we will continue to use executive action where we can, to try to protect americans. we will also continue to call on others including congress to join us in addressing this problem. but it just takes looking at the headlines for a weekend like this, to realize there's much more work to be done. >> does the president believe that the suspect in this attack should have been prevented from getting a gun, given he just had a mental health evaluation done last year? >> kaitlan, i will let law
enforcement continue to do the very hard, very important work that it has been doing to dig into the particulars of this case. but stepping back, i think we can all see an event like saturday, with ten dead, with families grieving. with a community shattered. and realize that something has gone wrong when whee get to tha moment. >> one big we is whether or not the president is going to call out people accused of amplifying a lot of the racist ideology that they believe played a role in this attack. you saw senator schumer on the senate floor yesterday doing this. is that something you think the president will mention, while he's giving his remarks in buffalo today? >> look, i think the president has been consistent and clear about this. frankly, not just as president, but going back to when he entered the primary race to become president. he pointed to the vitriol, the racism, the bigotry on display
in charlottesville, virginia, back in summer of 2017 as an animating factor for entering the race, to become president. and since then, he's been consistent that we are in the fight for the soul of this country. that we have a path forward that we believe is better, is more equitable, is good for public safety, is good for national security. and we keep expressing that and doing what we can to make that real through our actions and our policies. >> and when he often talks about what happened in charlottesville, he doesn't hesitate to talk about and invoke the former president. i do wonder if the president will answer the calls of those in his own party to name names directly in the remarks? >> you know, i'll let the president speak to that today. he's far better at that than i could be. i will emphasize and others in this administration have not hesitated to point to those who
can contribute to polarization, and even what becomes the justification in some quarters for violence that communities should not have disscenter the way we saw saturday. >> and intelligence sharing, coordination between law enforcement agencies following what happened in buffalo so when it comes to the administration, i wonder what your plan is to combat the domestic terrorism we've seen in these attacks? >> look, tackle domestic terrorism has been a priority for this administration truly since its first days in office. we announced during the 51st first week of the administration that we would be doing a 100-day review to figure out how the government can do better in addressing this issue. we released in june of last year, the country's first ever national strategy for countering domestic terrorism. and we have been working to implement of that strategy since. that includes improving how we
generate and share assessments of domestic terrorism threats. it includes directing millions and millions of additional dollars to prevention work, to stop those from being radicalized to violence in the first place. and it includes making this a priority for federal law enforcement across the country. we will continue doing that work. >> does the administration believe that domestic terrorism should be considered a federal crime? >> so, we continue to work with our colleagues in federal law enforcement to explore whether it makes sense to pursue any legislative forms. the third pill early of the strategy calls for a careful examination of exactly that, weighing what benefits any legislative proposal might provide against any risks it might pose, such as for civil liberties or simple rights. but there are a lot of tools in our toolbox already that the national strategy lays out for addressing this threat. including preparation work. including using existing legal
authority. we have felt, truly, since the first days of this administration that this issue was so urgent it could not wait for legislative change. we've been using those tools, better, more aggressively in a more coordinated fashion with greater resourcing behind them to tackle this issue now. and we'll continue to do that. >> josh gelzer, thanks for joining us. >> thank you, klaitlan. meanwhile, the city of mare yom le mariupol on the brink. why ukrainians are giving up the fight in the spot that was so criticical for ukrainians. ththe 360 smart bed senses yor movement and automatically adjusts to help keep you boboth comfortable all night. and can help you get almostst 30 minutes more restful sleep per night. sleep number takes care of the science. all you have to do is sleep. during our memorial day sale, save $1,000 on the sleep number 360 special edition smart bed, queen now only $1,999. only for a limited time. to learn more, go to sleepnumber.com.
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which has been a last line of defense for them in that city. they've announced an end to the combat operations in the city. ukrainian troops have held out for weeks beneath the azovstal steel plant under relentless russian shelling. i want to bring in cnn's melissa bell. she's live outside of kyiv, at the moment of a family anxiously awaiting the return of a loved one from mariupol. listen. >> reporter: that's right, john, we're in the kitchen of the family, who some of those who had to flee the violence in mariupol that you mentioned a moment ago. this was a city, after all, that was under siege for so many weeks. the last sort of business, as you mentioned, the azovstal steel plant where hundreds of fighters were holed up, many of them young men and women, who were wounded and in desperate needs food supplies. we now know more than 260 have been evacuated. several of those, the most wounded have been taken to a
hospital. the others have been taken to a border area where we expect that negotiations are under way, rather, we expect they will be handed to ukrainian authorities. i want to introduce you to tatiana and her daughter mira, who you said a moment ago, john, anxiously awaiting news. now, they as the families of so many other fighters holed up in azovstal have had very little communication with tatia's husband and mira's father. what's been happening, the fighters have a single phone on which they all put their text or loved ones. when signals are found. all of the messages go out to the families. imagine that she has not seen her father since the 8th of march, where he came to see both women to wish them a happy women's day. they then themselves had to flee the violence in mariupol on the 18th of march. driving her mother and
grandmother, with six months of driver's license, this is the rental home here. here where they're anxiously waiting. we've been careful about not identifying any of the men inside because this is a moment of extraordinary delicacy, to use the words of ukrainian president last night. it is about delicacy, it is about time. and everyone needs to be very careful about this exchange, if it is an exchange, we don't even have confirmation of that, has taken place. >> look. it's been a heroic stand for those troops in mariupol at that steel plant for more than 70 days. it does appear to be over, thousands, tens of thousands of russian troops for a long time. melissa bell, give our best to that family, thank you for being with us. other news this morning, for the first time in decades, we're about to see the first public congressional hearing on ufos. yes, the truth is out there. and amber heard has provide
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this morning, actress amber heard will be back on the stand for cross-examination in her ex-husband's johnny depp's $50 million defamation trial against her. on monday, she defended her op-ed at the center of the lawsuit that alleges depp was abusive saying, quote, every word was true. cnn's chloe malos joins us. >> reporter: good morning, yesterday when amber heard took
the stand and cross-examined by attorneys things got heated. she testified about the violence that endured with the relationship with depp. here's a little more of what he said when she took the stand. >> reporter: following a week-long break in proceeding, actress amber heard was back on the stand. providing more testimony in the $50 million defamation case, her ex-husband actor johnny depp has filed against her. at the center of the case, a 2018 op-ed heard wrote for "the washington post" two years after she filed after the divorce. heard described her as abused. and justified it having it published in her name. >> and i was happy to weigh in on what i saw as the -- you know, unique phenomenon that women and typically, women experience in our culture, when
they come forward against somebody more powerful. when they speak up about gender-based violence. >> reporter: and on monday, she defended the op-ed. it didn't name depp, but as his lawsuit alleges it cost him work. >> what, if anything, in this op-ed is incorrect? >> nothing, every word of it is true. >> reporter: depp denies any buss and said heard who filed a $1 million countersuit abused him. heard pushed back against depp's team's comments that her allegations were a hoax. >> to use what i went through and what i survived, calling it fake, saying that i'm harming johnny with this, i'm harming the public with this. this is what i lived through. and to say that it's a hoax, that these aren't even real things. >> reporter: heard told the jury the reasons for ending her marriage.
>> i did not -- likely not literally survive. i was so scared that it was going to end really badly. for me. >> reporter: despite those claims, depp's attorneys have pointed out heard once refused to cooperate with the police following an altercation. her attorney provided an opportunity to clarify. >> so, why didn't you want to cooperate with the police? >> because i -- i wanted to protect johnny. i didn't want him to be arrested. i didn't want him to be in trouble. >> reporter: during her testimony, heard denied being involved in an incident involves feces in their bedroom. >> we were in that bed with the dogs, i didn't notice anything. but we left them in the bed while we packed a bag to go to coachella, you know.
>> did you commit any kind of prank? >> absolutely not. absolutely not. >> and why would that not be something you would do? >> first of all, i don't think that's funny. i don't know what grown women does -- i was also not in a pranking mood. my life was falling apart. >> reporter: heard also testified about her counterclaim, which revolves around depp's attorney calling her allegations a hoax. afterwards, she head her role in the upcoming "aquaman" sequel was reduced. >> they basically took a lot out of my role. they didn't -- well, they just removed a bunch. >> reporter: cnn has reached out to warner brothers the studio behind the "aquaman" for comment. during the cross-examination,
department's attorneys have pointed out heard has yet to make good on the entire $20 million settlement she received from depp. heard blaming the countersuit against her. depp's attorneys questioned heard's abuse allegations at times, zooming in of photos taken of the actresses and overseas trips including one to australia in march 2015. >> you testified that you had cuts on the bottom of your feet as well? >> yes, that's true. >> you testified that you had a bruise across your jaw from when mr. depp, quote, clocked you in the face, end quote? >> that's true. >> you didn't take any pictures of these injuries while in australia, did you? >> no, i don't think i took any pictures. >> on all of this, let's bring in criminal defense attorney sarah azari. sarah, this has been remarkable to watch. what they were talking about, in
the op-ed, at the center of this, she said every word she wrote is true? >> yeah, and this came right before her cross-examination. and this sort of pretestimony alert is both odd and unnecessary. it calls her credibility into question more. it's almost like a red flag. and frankly, you know, the truth needs no defense. you know, let the jury decide who to believe. this is a he said/she said case. it's ultimately up to the jury. >> so, talk to me about that because what's interesting here what people hear being discussed allegations of domestic abuse. but it's not a domestic abuse case. >> right. >> it's a defamation case which is a he said/she said issue. what is it that the jury is seeing in all of this? >> you know, up until now, when her cross-examination started yesterday. the jury was seeing maybe some instances of abuse by both of these individuals against each other, depp although being probably the more credible
witness in terms of his decision, in terms of his story. but this trial, john, is so bad for the credibility of true domestic violence victims who are already struggling with being believed, you know. and ultimately hearing that we have and then you have all these issues of abuse and no photographs to document, no medical records to document. these are not just slight marks. these are things nonelective in terms of having to go to the doctor. you're bleedbleeding, you're br your ribs are broken, you can't breathe. you need medical reports. i'm not imposing criteria on victims of domestic violence to document or we don't believe them, but she is a photographer, she photographed a lot of chaos, broken objects but not these injuries. that's why she's not credible. >> what is she saying to the attorney's arguments? >> she's up there and she says,
i don't know, i have certain photos and i used ice. we have makeup. i was injured. but there was one instance that fans of johnny depp latched on to where she said she had broken her nose by depp diuring an altercation and went on a late night appearance and they were zooming in on her facial gestures and they say this does not look like someone who had broken their nose. she says that everything she has claimed is true, she has photographs to show redness, some marks, but to your point, to the point of the court of public opinion, which is heavily on depp's side, they're saying where are the receipts, where is the evidence that really backs this up. they also talked to her about the broken bottle he allegedly put inside of her and they said, why did you not seek medical attention if you were bleeding? you had to have been incredibly injured and she said she was embarrassed and she didn't want that to get out there for depp's
sake. >> i mean, it is just such a fascinating trial. i think people are watching this so closely to see what happens and what the jury ultimately decides. thank you, both, for joining us this morning to break it all down. >> thank you. we have new details this morning in the investigation in the racist attack in buffalo including what the grocery store manager says she did when she saw the suspect outside the store the day before. plus -- >> look at that thing. >> the first open congressional hearing on ufos in more than 50 years about to be under way. wouldn't you want to see the witness list for this? >> number one, alien. >> number two, et. more protection, more sun, more joy. neutrogena® beach defense® the suncare brand used most by dermatologists
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this morning, for the first time in more than half a century, a house panel is holding a public hearing on mysterious flying objects, known as ufos. cnn's kristin fisher with the details. >> reporter: well, john, this is a very big day. the chairman of the house intelligence committee describes this as one of the great mysteries of our time. and it is a big day for all of these people who have spent so many years pushing for more transparency into this topic, but especially for those navy pilots who actually saw these things with their own eyes. >> look at that thing, dude. >> reporter: seven years after spotting this unexplained object off the coast, top pentagon officials will be grilled by members of a house intelligence subcommittee, the first public hearing on ufos or uaps, unidentified aerial phenomena in
more than half a century. >> it was essentially relegated to science fiction. but in a very real sense, uaps present a very real national security risk and the intelligence committee has a responsibility to investigate. >> reporter: the hearing comes almost a year after the director of national intelligence released a highly anticipated report which examined 144 reports of uaps but identified only a single one. which turned out to be a deflated balloon. quote, the others remain unexplained. the report also documents 11 instances in which pilots reported near misses with a uap. >> this is not tin foil hats and conversations of being on the mothership. >> reporter: lewis elisondo has been pushing for more transparency. >> this is a very serious national security issue. something is in our skies. it has been there for quite some time and we're just now having
the conversation publicly about it. >> my god. >> reporter: ufos first hit the american public's radar about 70 years ago, pushing pentagon officials to try to explain the unexplainable. >> i'm here to discuss the so-called flying saucers. >> reporter: in the 1960s, then congressman gerald ford asked congress to investigate, leading to the last public hearings on ufos, quote, i believe the american people are entitled to a more thorough explanation than has been given to them by the air force. but the air force investigation known as project blue book concluded that ufos were not extra terroristial, nor did they pose a threat to our national security. now another congressman, andre carson, is pushing for similar answers. >> i believe it is important that they work to declassify some of this knowledge so the american people can effectively understand what's happening. >> reporter: could these objects that caught the attention of
trained navy pilots be part of a top secret u.s. program? could they be coming from a foreign adversary? or somewhere else? whatever they are, the intelligence report concedes a handful of uaps appear to demonstrate advanced technology, some without discernible means of propulsion. >> the speeds they're exhibiting as well as the flight characteristics, there is no platform or really energy source that i'm aware of that could allow something to stay in the air as long as these objects were. >> reporter: the only thing certain is that they exist. >> the big question is whose is it and where is it from and what are the intentions and what are the full capabilities and is there something we can learn from it? >> reporter: so those are some big questions, right? don't expect all of them to be answered today. though, john, there will be a closed classified hearing after today's public hearing, which should get under way in just about one hour. >> closed hearing, that's where the fun stuff is all going to come out. kristin fisher, thank you very much. "new day" continues right