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tv   CNN Newsroom Live  CNN  August 27, 2021 1:00am-2:00am PDT

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welcome to our viewers here in the united states and all around the world. i'm michael holmes, appreciate your company. u.s. military leaders warning that the deadly suicide bombings are likely just the beginning. more than 90 afghans and 13 u.s. service members were killed at the airport's main entrance for evacuees and at the nearby baron hotel. we're about to show you some graphic video of the scene but we think it is important to document the brutality of what is happening. the jihadist group isis-k has claimed responsibility for the attack. one of the bombers detonating his explosives in a sewer drench
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where many were waiting in line hoping to be processed for flights. the u.s. president joe biden wowing that the attacks won't stop the airlift that has now brought more than 100,000 people out of afghanistan and he is ordering the u.s. military to go after isis-k targets. >> for those who carried out this attack, as well as anyone who wishes america harm, know this, we will not forgive. we will not forget. we wwill hunt you down and make you pay. >> meanwhile the uk ministry of defense says its armed forces have entered the final stages of their stay at thamid karzai airport and no more people will be called forward for evacuations. cnn has correspondents standing by live to cover this story
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there around the globe. from weighing to hong kong. and we'll also go live to germany where many afghans are now refugees. we begin with sam kiley who was at the kabul airport just a few days ago with more on the terror attack in this report which contains some very graphic images. >> reporter: 13 u.s. personnel and scores of afghans have been killed in a terror attack at the kabul airport. u.s. central command says the 18 other service members were also wounded. in a complex attack, which the afghan ministry of public health said injured more than 100 other people. the scenes of horror come in the waning days of america's unprecedented civilian airlift. general mckenzie said more attacks were anticipated. >> we believe it is their desire to continue those attacks and we expect those attacks to continue and we're doing everything we can to be prepared for those
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attacks. >> reporter: bombings targeted many who were trying this vein to get into kabul airport and get on one of the last evacuation flights. the taliban pledged to punish those behind it. the blasts were just outside an gi abbey gate and near a hotel occupied until recently by british forces. it is an area packed for days with afghans wading through sewage canals, those conditions would surely have amplified the explosion. american officials have been working with potential attacks for days. wednesday they stepped up the alarm talking about a very specific threat stream and about planned attack on crowds outside the airport. americans were killed when in close contact screening and searching evacuees at the gate. >> isis will not deter us from
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accomplishing the mission, i can assure you of that. all right >> reporter: but this is a dangerous time for the mission, due to end by an august 31 deadlines a troops withdraw, they become more vulnerable. and it is damaging for the taliban too. sworn enemies of isis-k, they promise the u.s. airport security and safety at home for afghans. these attacks suggest that they have delivered on neither. sam kiley, cnn, doha. and nick paton walsh recently spent time in afghanistan. a and nick, tell us more about what you are learning about what might be yet to come and how it could impact evacuations. >> reporter: it is very hard at this stage to know exactly where this first explosion detonated. it seems to have been at the
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outside of abbey gate. and that is where we've seen of course the very crowded scenes you saw in sam's package just there. obviously the bomber wearing a suicide vest went into the crowd it seems to have been picked out by marines for searching. that is an important detail because they are not searching everybody who is there, they simply don't have the time. and general mckenzie was clear that the search was very up crow, they could smell the breath of the person who they were searching. so this suggests possibly that this suicide bomber, a man who isis say came from logar, may have been selected from the crowd for some reason for searching. that of course would be part of the figuring out how that possibly happened. and then there was a second blast possibly a little further down the road toward the baron hotel, unclear exactly where that was, and all these explosions related in at least 90 afghans losing their lives
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and over 100 being injured. startling numbers even for the tolls we often hear coming out of afghanistan. and then according to general mckenzie, there was gun fire that hit civilians. so we are possibly talking about three certainly two, maybe four, because of the reference to gunmen by centcom, that is a major question for security, a major question for the taliban to answer because they are supposed to be filtering, searching people before they head toward the airport. what now for the evacuation? we are obviously talking about a heighten the security threat, accelerated time table, the white house very clear that they will continue evacuations up until the point that they can, but not specifying when they will slow down these large scale evacuations, we reported yesterday that should start tomorrow. but some pushback from the pentagon on that, they are dealing with a very limited window and also a military rich grade that has to happen under the heightened isis threat and of course the severe problem
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that it is very hard to get people now on to the airport. because you have this heightened security situation and of course the fact that frankly for their own protection so many of the americans and the remaining nato allies dwindling fast in number have to worry about the persistent isis threat. >> nick, thanks. let's turn now to arlette saenz in washington. in just a few hours the president and vice president will meet with their national security team. similar question to what we were tal talking about with nick, the attack obviously prevented a lot of afghans from making it to the airport. do you hear that it will impact the u.s. plans to have the drawdown complete by the 31st? >> reporter: president biden has really remained steadfast in that august 31 drawdown. in fact yesterday at the white house the president even argued that the threat of possible terror attacks is one of the
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reasons why that mission needs to continue on that time line. and you've heard the president and top military officials warn that another attack from isis-k may be possible especially as this mission to evacuate and drawdown from afghanistan quickly approaches. but president biden has also vowed to retaliate against those who perpetrated this attack. and insisted that these actions by those terrorists will not change the american plans. take a listen. >> we will not be deterred by terrorists. we will not let them stop our mission. we will continue the evacuation. i've also ordered my commanders to develop operational plans to strike isis-k assets, leadership and facilities. we will respond with force and precision at our time at the place we choose and in the moment of our choosing. here is what you need to know.
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these isis terrorists will not win. we will rescue the americans in there. we will get our afghan allies out. and our mission will go on. america will not be intimidated. >> now, that drawdown mission certainly will take heightened importance over the course of the next few days especially as that security situation around the could be bull airport becomes more precarious. now, the president has said that they are in contact with the majority of americans that they know to be in the country, and are working with them to try to get those who want to leave afghanistan to the kabul airport so that they can be evacuated. but there are also other steps that will need to be taken before that august 31st drawdown. it is not just the evacuation of americans. they are also trying to get as many afghan allies out as possible and then there is the actual military drawdown that needs to be taken into account as well.
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the president has said that even after the u.s. military leaves afghanistan, that there will be efforts to evacuate others who are still trying to get out of the country. but it is unknown exactly how that will all take place without a u.s. military presence on the ground. the president and vice president are set to be briefed in just a few hours by their national security team. certainly a host of these issues will be coming up at that briefing as they are trying to ensure the safe evacuation of american personnel on the ground there and also those military capacity that we currently have in the country. >> arlette saenz, there in washington. appreciate it. we'll take a quick break. when we come back, the growing threat of isis-k, we'll take a look at where the group came from and what threats it poses to afghanistan and beyond. also the u.s. president wants military options to strike back at isis-k. the terrorist group responsible
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the flag above the white house at half-staff this hour. it was lowered thursday to honor the victims of the deadly bombings outside kabul airport. british officials say the uk has now entered the final stages of its evacuations from afghanistan. anna stewart is in london and joining me live. speak to the timing of this announcement. has it been influenced by the attack and has the uk gotten everyone out who was entitled to get out? anna stewart clearly not hearing us here. we'll move on and come back to her a little later. the terror group that is claiming responsibility for the attack is known as isis-k. they are an offshoot of the islamic state that swept through iraq before the u.s. pushed them out. the militant group, a bitter rival of the taliban, and has a long record of murderous atrocities. we'll be talking a little later
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with korachi about that. the relationship is not clear cut. a short time ago i spoke with someone from the az i sia pacif foundation, a security think tank. >> between isis-k and the taliban, they will fight and kill each other on one day and then potentially couldn't the next day for strategic reasons, mutual interests, convergence such as for example trying to force western troops out of afghanistan. and you also have to remember that isis-k are mboth from pakistan and afghanistan. some isis fighters are married to taliban fighters and advice
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ve vice versa. so it is much more murkier. >> that is fascinating. i guess when it comes to the attack tactically it achieves exactly what isis likes to do, american casualties primarily, but also chaos on the ground. what else might isis-k be looking to do and what does this attack suggest about its reach and capability in afghanistan? >> if we look at some of the attacks that they have carried out over the last year, you mentioned the attack on the maternity ward, they murdered women who were in the process of giving birth. they targeted a girl's school and dozens of young children were murdered. and of course now this very awful horrific attack at the airport. it is about power, it is about control, and intimidation. they want to show the afghans that they are there, that they have a stake in afghanistan's very dystopian future now that
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the west is leaving, and that they will compete with the taliban for control of the country. and unfortunately, the afghan people are sandwiched now between the taliban on one side and isis-k on the other side. he also said isis-k grew stronger in just the past few week after the taliban freed its prisoners from various jails in afghanistan. as we were saying before, british officials say the uk has now entered the final stages of its evacuations from afghanistan. cnn's anna stewart in london for us. we've re-established contact. anna, good to see you. the timing of this announcement and whether it was influenced by the attack. >> actually it wasn't. already like many other nations, the uk decided that the heightened risks surrounding the airport was enough that these missions needed to get wrapped up and that is the announcement we've had this morning. the terrible sadness here is
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that not everyone who wanted to get the airlift has been able to. here is what the defense secretary said in the uk this morning. >> we will process those people that we have brought with us, the 1,000 people approximately inside the airfield now, and we will seek a way to continue to find a few people in the crowd where we can, but overall the main processing has now closed and we have a matter of hours. >> the uk had been able to evacuate over 13,000 people in just two weeks. but joining other european nations including denmark, poland and belgium and the netherlands who also ended their evacuation mixes. there were some interesting comments yesterday from boris johnson who said that time was very much running short and clearly now this is wrapping up in just a matter of hours, however he said that he hopes in weeks to do that they would be able to establish some sort of safe corridor for those people
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they haven't been able to evacuate, that would be with the cooperation though of the taliban and he did hold a sort of large carrot for the taliban saying if they want to unblock the billions of dollars and a return to financial aid, they want to know that some people can still return to the uk, return to other countries, can leave afghanistan in the weeks to come. and that is something that the taliban will probably need. at this stage the economic picture is dire and the next phase for the taliban of course is how to govern the country. >> and real quick, what is the public opinion on this in terms of leaving now, did they get enough people and so on? >> i think like many countries there is just a sense of terrible sadness and sho being shock at what we've seen. i think the military particularly uk troops, a general speaking today, saying
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how traumatic it will have been as an operation even for the armed forces who of course are so used to this sort of situation. but the guilt that you will feel leaving people behind at the airport, knowing that they wanted to get out but couldn't, will probably stick with many people. but i think there is just a general sense of sadness and a hope that this isn't the end of evacuations in the coming weeks. >> and the knowledge that those who are left behind are probably facing death for what they did for the various countries they worked for. anna stewart in london, appreciate it. good to see you. thanks. now tom foreman has a closer look for us now at the security challenge of securing that airport. >> what the u.s. military is dealing with is really a challenge of time and space. how in a very chaotic environment do you move forward, complete the withdrawal, getting people out, especially with these violence events upsetting things the way they have at this
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moment. let's look closer at this map to see what we're dealing with. here is the main road that comes up from kabul to the airport. there is a checkpoint by the taliban in here where they are trying to watch people coming up, but they are hitting this barrier around the airport and they are spreading out going hundreds of yards in different directions, thousands of people, and this is where these two main attacks have owe you aoccur occ, the abbey gate and the baron hotel. this is where many have been brought out including a lot of afghans. it happened by the gate opening according to the pentagon very briefly. and then people coming through being checked and then the gate closing again. here is the problem. there are thousands of people, virtually no standoff, so when it comes to that moment of people doing through, u.s. troops have to actually check them according to the pentagon. they have to be right next to them. so if someone gets through, the ability for a bomb blast to have
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tremendous impact is really right there. what do they do going forward? that is really the challenge. what they have to do is figure out some way to manage that pass-through while they deal with still a lot of people. remember, we have about 1,000 u.s. citizens believed to still be in the country who may want to come out. and there are about 5,000 troops who still have to be withdrawn. now we know the system set up according to the pentagon to operate under stress, operate under attack, we know that it will have to if they want to do this successfully based on what we've seen so far. >> tom foreman there. let's turn our attention now to anna coren who has been keeping in contact with afghans from her home base in hong kong. and i've been getting a lot of messages, i know you have too, from people still inside the country worried that they are not going to get out.
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>> reporter: they are terrified. clearly they are not going to get out. that is the harsh cold truth because we know now that evacuations have basically stopped. no more people will be getting through those gates. perhaps the americans might let through american citizens, those with u.s. visas, but as far as the afghans holding those sivs, those special immigrant visas that say that they worked for america, for foreign companies, that has now ended. that window has closed. i'm in touch with women who i met when i was this kabul last month who were planning on going to the airport yesterday. the company which is a u.s. based company out of washington, d.c. funded by the u.s. embassy, u.s. state department, had promised them on the 7th of august that they would start evacuating the 128 staff. not one single person has beenl.
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they were on the way to the airport yesterday afternoon when the blasts went off. killing obviously those 13 u.s. service members as well as more than 90, you know, the toll rising by the hour of afghans. not to mention the 150 plus that have been injured. they said that our window has now closed. and one of those women, she wrote to me just a few hours ago and i want to read to you something that she wrote. this absolute sense of hopelessness and that everything is now lost. she said freedom has died. happiness has died. hope has died for afghans. and that is the overwhelming sense that i am getting. i mean, like you, michael, i'm inundated with messages,
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messages from people i met last month, messages that people have heard that cnn has managed to get people out, our staff out, our local producers out. you know, these are coordinated missions that have taken a lot of manpower, a lot of people on the ground. that window has now closed and the harsh reality now is that these people are stuck in afghanistan, they are trapped, and they don't know if they will ever be able to leave. or if they are just going to have to leavive under taliban r. >> or if they are on a death list, that is the thing, a lot of people whose very lives are at stake now. anna, have to leave it there. thank you. despite thursday's deadly terror attack in kabul, evacuations are going on at the city's airport. we've been seeing planes taking off over the last couple of hours. we'll bring you the latest on efforts to get people out while they can. and later, how will the attack in kabul and evacuations from
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welcome back to our viewers in the united states and around the world. you're watching "cnn newsroom." it is early afternoon in kabul, afghanistan and the u.s. continues evacuating at-risk afghans and u.s. citizens. but many international partners have now ended airlift
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operations and as we reported just before the break, the uk says its rescue effort will end in, quote, a matter of hours. but insists the deadly suicide attack at the airport on thursday did not hasten the british departure. more than 90 afghans and 13 u.s. service members were killed in the bombings. isis-k claiming responsibility. u.s. president biden said the u.s. is already drawing up plans to strike back. >> with regard to finding, tracking down, the isis leaders who ordered this, we have some reason to believe we know who they are. not certain. and we will find ways of our choosing without large military operations to get them.
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[ inaudible question ] >> wherever they are. >> the attack comes as u.s. forces race to evacuate americans and some of the thousands of afghans who helped them fight the taliban. earlier i spoke to cnn military analyst and retired air force kernel cedric leighton about the challenges to protecting the airport. >> force protection is actually job one for all deployed commanders in the united states military and that normally means protecting your own force and allied forces. this is a little bit more difficult because you also have a civilian population that you also want to protect and that is i think one of the big issues here because force protection obviously there were measures in place, but they didn't work as they wanted them to, as they were intended to. and that makes for a big difference. i think when you have a situation where when a disaster like this occurs, you have to change a lot of practices and you'd have to change them on the
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fly. and that becomes a challenge for the deployed commander. >> u.s. military leaders are warning that the deadly suicide bombings outside the kabul airport are likely just the beginning. cnn's natasha is joining us. what are you hearing about the continued threats and how they might impact evacuations as they hopefully proceed along? >> we're told that the threats continue, they are persistent. u.s. officials are very concerned particularly about isis, but also about al qaeda. however, isis khorasan, that offshoot group of the islamic state there in afghanistan, is the top concern at this point. what we're hearing about the evacuations is that now they are prioritizing u.s. citizens to get out of kabul airport there, they have pretty much sealed off the gates in light of this terrorist attack. it is very, very difficult. it was even before this attack to get in if you were not an american citizen or green card
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hunter, permanent resident. so now it will become even more difficult for afghans to get out especially ahead of that tuesday deadline before all of the u.s. troops withdraw here. and of course u.s. officials are very mindful of the fact that every day there is this persistent threat there of a terrorist attack. they have asked the taliban to extend the perimeter around the airport to make it harder for potential suicide bombers to get up to those checkpoints where they could get into close contact with the civilians, with the u.s. forces on the ground there trying to protect the airport. but obviously, you know, the taliban has not been able to thwart every single attack as we saw on thursday. they have been sharing intelligence, the u.s. has been sharing intelligence with the taliban and they have said that some attacks there have been thwarted by the militants because they are again very much in conflict with the islamic state. but some things obviously have slipped through the cracks here and as the u.s. force presence
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dwindled in an kabul, it will b increasingly difficult to secure that area. obviously there is the number one priority for the president right now is making sure that american soldiers get home safe, that americans are evacuated out of afghanistan, those 1,000 or so that are still there. and drawing down as safely as possible after this devastating attack. >> appreciate the update, natasha better trand there in washington. and more to come, how president biden's political future might be impacted. we'll talk to one of the best political minds around. and also an american air base in germany has become a well come haven for thousands who managed to flee safely from afghanistan. we'll take you there.
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hey, i just got a text from my sister. you remember rick, her neighbor? sure, he's the 76-year-old guy who still runs marathons, right? sadly, not anymore. wow. so sudden. um, we're not about to have the "we need life insurance" conversation again, are we? no, we're having the "we're getting coverage so we don't have to worry about it" conversation. so you're calling about the $9.95 a month plan -from colonial penn? -i am. we put it off long enough. we are getting that $9.95 plan, today. (jonathan) is it time for you to call about the $9.95 plan? i'm jonathan from colonial penn life insurance company. sometimes we just need a reminder not to take today for granted. if you're age 50 to 85, you can get guaranteed acceptance whole life insurance starting at just $9.95 a month.
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the united kingdom says its evacuation operation in afghanistan will end in a matter of hours. many other of america's international partners have now ended their participation in the airlift, which has helped almost 100,000 people escape. u.s. efforts reportedly continue despite the suicide attacks on thursday that killed at least 90 afghans and 13 u.s. service members. the terror group isis-k claiming responsibility. flags are being lowered to half-staff at the white house and u.s. capitol in honor of those killed in the kabul terror attack. they will remain at half-staff until monday, eve of the u.s. deadline to formally withdraw from afghanistan. the carnage, fears of further violence and nagging questions about what could have been done differently have all made for what joe biden's aides call the
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worst day of his young presidency. of course washington being what it is these days, some republicans are demanding his resignation saying he has blood on his hands, calling for impeachment some of them. here is what the white house press secretary had to say. >> it is not a day for politics and we would expect that any american, whether elected or not, would stand with us in our commitment to going after and fighting and killing the terrorists wherever they live and honoring the memory of service members. that is what this day is for. >> ron brownstein is joining me, a cnn political analyst. we heard jen psaki say that it is not a day for politics, but sadly these days it is all about politics. what is the likely political fallout, the political cost, if any, for joe biden as a result of what has happened? >> good to be with you. though unfortunately on such a
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tragic day for america and these young service members and their families. i don't think that this by itself will be a significant long term political issue for biden. i think that it will obviously have a short term impact on his political standing. his approval rating was already sinking and i think that this will push it further. about y but in 1983, 20 times americans were killed in lebanon and then the next year ronald reagan won. i think that it will be lasting if it becomes part of a broader narrative that the republicans will try to put together that events are overwhelming, and that has more do with covid, inflation, crime, the border, other issues. if those problems are still going on next year, i think that it is a political problem. >> given the view of the americans in terms of their support for the broader withdraw, do you see any likely
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impact on the '22 election campaign for him? >> i think biden is at this moment in a split screen presidency. on one screen, he is moving steadily if bumpily toward historic lenlgislative achievement. this congress just in that single reconciliation bill is poised to pass the most significant democrat-led agenda since 1965, a massive array of programs that virtually every american will feel in their daily life from universal pre-k to expanded child tax credits. on the other hand, on the other screen in the here and now, there are a whole series of trends in daily life that polls show americans are uneasy about, the trends in covid, inflation, as i mentioned, crime for republicans what is happening at the border and certainly the way the afghanistan withdrawal has
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been handled. and i think if all of those things are still seemed to be going in the wrong direction next year, yes, it will be a significant drag on democrats. but if he gets control of the broader circumstances, particularly covid and the economy, i think that this particular, you know, reversal and tragedy will not be a lasting blow. >> and meanwhile how do you think republicans will handle what happened politically? we're already seeing they will be behaving leike there is bloo in the water. >> you have some calling for joe biden's resignation. i don't remember if democrats called for ronald reagan's resignation after the marine bombing. so it is a reflection of where we are particularly and also a reminder, i think if republicans
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gain control of the congress in 2022, it is highly likely that they will find a reason to impeach joe biden. you know, sentenced for his verdict afterwards. i think that they will find a cause to do it and i think the reaction to this is just a reminder that that is one of the likely outcomes if republicans gain the house in the 2022 election. >> just payback. >> well, or just because the demand from the base is so overwhelming. the view as we've seen, you knek know, 75% of republicans believe that the election was stolen and we've seen kevin mccarthy showing no effort to discipline the members of his caucus and i think that it will be hard for them to avoid finding some reason -- even lindsey graham is theoretically someone not at the far militant end of the party was talking about impeaching biden over this. so i think that is just a reflection of where we are
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politically. he does have to get this under control. i mean, in some ways they seem to be heading toward that with the enormous amount of people that they have moved out, but this is a reminder of just how much exposure and vulnerability literally for our service members and politically for the president we have each day that we have that presence at the airport. >> ron brownstein, always a pleasure. thanks so much. >> thank you, michael. and we've been monitoring images coming to us from kabul airport. this is a live image here. what we've been seeing over the last few minutes and a lot of these people have obviously got on board the plane, there was a huge queue of people getting on board that plane, they appear many of them to have gotten on, there are still some stragglers coming. but just an indication of how many people are airlifted out. of course the worry is that people outside the airport,
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those even who are entitled to or have the right documents are not getting inside the airport. these are people inside the airport who have been processed and are on their way out of the country. and you can just see a little group there at the end of it. it was a long line a few minutes ago. but the evacuations are continuing. still to come here on the program, the u.s. air base in ramstein, germany has become a major transit point for thousands who have gotten out of afghanistan. the same way those other people are about to. the teams in the air and on the ground making sure that they feel welcome. we'll have a report. >> we did everything we could to make everyone feel comfortable and feel protected and dwquite frankly loved.
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with paycom, employees enter and manage their own hr data in a single, easy-to-use software. visit paycom dot com and schedule your demo today. do they know this door is locked this plane landed in frankfurt, germany just hours ago carrying afghan refugees fleeing the chaos at home. angela merkel says that her government is still in negotiations with the taliban to get more people out of the country. but other nations have wrapped up their evacuation efforts, including australia, canada,
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belgium, netherlands, poland, denmark and new zealand. and the uk says that it too will be wrapping up evacuations in a matter of hours. but france says that it will join the u.s. in seeing evacuations through to the end. the statement coming after president emmanuel macron said that he could not guarantee success because the security situation in kabul is progressively getting worse. >> translator: it is obvious that the tension is increasing greatly. we have all known that risk since the beginning. considering the confusion in kabul and the tension have been there since the beginning. the next hours will remain extremely dangerous in kabul and at the airport. >> many people still in afghanistan of course now living in limbo, uncertain of when or even if they will make it out. but for thousands of evacuees who did make it to safety, got out of the country, the american
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air base in ramstein, germany has become a welcome refuge as they await their journey onward. atika shubert is joining me now. what have you been seeing and hearing? i'm sure there is no shortage of hope but at the same time heartbreaking stories. >> reporter: it is a mix of emotions but what we have been witnessing is this incredible transformation of the ramstein air base. there is a massive tent city literally on the tarmac that houses thousands of evacuees, their temporary home, and more are expected to come. and that is why it is so critical to get these commercial carriers, flights bringing these evacuees to the united states, and we were fortunate to get into what they call the international airport terminal which is where these evacuees finally take their flight to the united states. take a look. hangar 5 at ramstein air base has become the gateway to a new life for thousands of afghan
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evacuees. this military airplane hangar has essentially become an international airport terminal and we're standing in what would be the check-in area. and the goal is to get as many evacuees as possible on to those commercial planes to the united states. many are happy to be leaving, but also fearful for family left behind. this man checks in for his flight with his sister and father. >> they remain in there, four sister and two brother. i come here with my one sister. yeah, it is very hard to feel this honestly. >> reporter: while the military has handled the evacuation from kabul, it is the state department and homeland security that are responsible for getting advaevacuees to the u.s. >> the military brings them in, and they stay here for a short period of time, and then we bring them out so that they can go back to the united states. it has been slow moving but now
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we're getting into a process. flights are leaving. >> reporter: volunteers pack toys, coloring books and snacks in to backpacks for the kids before the flight. >> doesn't have to be anything fancy or that makes noise. they will go from wailing to content and happy and smiling the rest of the time. it is unbelievable. >> reporter: on the tarmac, the flight arrives. delta's a-350 flagship plane. for the entire crew, an emotional experience. >> we saw some of the evacuees standing out by the hangar and i think that is really when it c clicked and we were like this is game time, these are people that we're bringing back to the united states to escape. >> reporter: hope that the normalcy of a commercial flight might provide some measure of comfort after the hasty evacuation. >> we did everything that we could to to make everyone comfortable and feel protected and quite frankly, loved. >> reporter: as the plane is readied for boarding, this man
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and his family weigh their bagbags, all they were able to bring. and then they wave good-bye to board their flight to a new life in america. now, i just have new numbers coming in here, more than 4,100 evacuees have departed for the united states on approximately 18 flights from ramstein air base which sounds like a lot, but keep in mind in the next 24 hours as the evacuation out of kabul airport continues, they are expecting as many as 10,000 evacuees to arrive at the ramstein air base and at the moment, we're averaging about one plane an hour. so it really is an incredible logistical operation that is happening at the base. michael. >> absolutely is. atika shubert there in germany, thanks so much. and to find out how you can help afghan refugees or if you are a veteran troubled by the events in afghanistan, go to
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cnn.com/impact for resources that can help. thanks for spending part of your day with me. follow me on instagram and twitter, at holmes cnn oig. "early start" is next.
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good morning, welcome to our viewers in the united states and around the world. this is "early start." >> it is friday, august 27, 5:00 a.m. here in new york. it is 1:30 p.m. in cabkabul. and this morning america's longest war ending very much the way it began. the nation mourning the victims of a horrific terror attack and a president vowing to hunt down and punish those responsible in afghanistan. at least 13 u.s. troops were killed, and over a dozen more injured in the worst attack on u.s. soldiers in a decade. we want to warn you, the images you are about to see here are disturbing. twin explosions by suicide bombers tearing through crowds thursday outside kabul's airport and a nearby h

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