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tv   CNN Newsroom Live  CNN  August 30, 2021 1:00am-2:00am PDT

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good morning everyone. welcome to our viewers in the united states and around the world. this is "early start." i'm laura jarrett. >> i'm christine romans. it's 4:00 a.m. in new york. ida a category 1 hurricane. this hour we have the first reported fatal they and more than a million without power as ida slows to a near stand still over louisiana. the storm making landfall early
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sunday. 16 years to the day after can -- katrina. the single death came sunday evens where a tree toppled over a home. a flash flood emergency has been declared for the entire south shore metro area and new orleans parish including new orleans is without power after what the power company is calling catastrophic transmission damage. louisiana said some of the customers could be without power for weeks. now the 9-1-1 system in new orleans is experiencing difficulties. in the area they're experiencing total devastation. >> we have a bunch of people trapped. it's too rough. it would be life threatening for
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the person operating the boat at this time. we try to do high water trucks. we can't get through the water. our main bridge -- to our community. and most of them are evacuated but we have about 300 people. 200 people were still there. >> so as though who stayed in their homes wait for help, many are cut off from basic utilities. they're evacuating patients from two facilities hit hard. president joe biden declared a major disaster in louisiana and offered up federal aid. our coverage begins with cnn derek van dam live in houma, louisiana. i know you were getting whipped around earlier. what does it look like now? >> reporter: yeah. we were in the bulls eye of the storm. it was a nightmare snarcenario t unfolded here before our eyes. it was relentless.
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the ending fury of category 4 hurricane winds felt right where i'm located -- i just -- it's so hard to describe exactly what happened. i'm going to do my best to share it with you. it was white knuckle, anxious moments for my team, the people on the ground here, and certainly for the individuals who tried to ride out the storm in the area. it was like taking, for example, an analogy. it was like taking a direct hit from an ef 3 tornado. winds over 140 miles per hour. over a large space of time. and over a large distance, as well. the storm, we anticipated the eye to go over this area. so we thought we would get some respite. that did not happen. the storm pivoted and pounded us with the relentless wipd for hours. there have been helicopters flying around. familiar sounds of generators humming in the background.
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the only emergency vehicles we see on the roads are the blue lights flashing occasionally. i think they're making sure trying to scope out the situation, of course, we'll get a better idea of the devastation once we get first light here in the next couple of hours. it was a scary moment for our crew yesterday as the worst of the storm came in and that was about 5:00 p.m. evening time. it was still daylight but then once it worked its way into my time, it was a disaster. there was natural gas leaks in the area. there were trees that fell on cars behind us. you can see over my right shoulder here, this is a small taste of the problems that we're going to be dealing with this morning. this was more of a wind damage disaster here than a flood damage. we haven't seen any extensive flooding in and around the general hotel area that we're located in. but really what we're talking about here was a true nightmare. a scary situation for people who did not have admittedly the luxury of a reinforced concrete
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building like we have. we have to think and pray for the people here this morning. >> yeah. we are listening to the wind. feeling it on the ground, i know, is different. thank you for being there for us. stay safe. we'll come back to you in a little bit. >> a beast of a storm here. some residents told to evacuate immediately because of a levy failure and high tide in grand isle, louisiana about 30 minutes away from now. the flood threat is active. our meteorologist is tracking this monster storm live with us. cnn weather center. it's good to remind people that, you know, new orleans and some of louisiana had more rain so far this year than they usually do on average. it's a very wet and soggy situation. one reason why when the storm came ashore, it had the organized eye wall. it's so wet there. >> absolutely. it's a very good point here, as well. metrological phenomena that.
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about 20% of tropical systems it's called the brown ocean effect. the soil is so saturated. it essentially acts like the gulf of mexico. 13 hours since landfall now. 13 hours over land still maintaining category 1 hurricane strength. spent about five hours at category 4 strength. when you put it over the waterways, it's conducive to maintaining an intensity of a tropical system but this one crossing into the state of mississippi in the last hour and maintaining hurricane strength. it speaks volumes as far as how intense of a storm we're dealing with. estimated rainfall totals in the region in the colors of pink,s it is rare to see that. about a foot of rain has come
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down. one of these levies has failed. when you put a tremendous amount of water in the region, the wind speeds, at one point, making landfall at 150 miles per hour, it's among the strongest storms we've ever seen make landfall across the u.s. in grand isle, the wind measuring device had 148 miles per hour wind gusts and it's indicative of it breaking down because of the intensity of the storm system. we lost communication with it. winds could have gone higher than that. it speaks to how intense of a storm we're tracking here. here it goes. very organized. we think it'll finally begin breaking down and become a tropical storm in the next several hours. monday afternoon across portions of the state of mississippi and eventually as we go into monday night and tuesday morning, we'll see it cross into the tennessee valley and push across the ohio valley even into the northeast. so a significant weather player and peak hurricane season, christine, just about a week
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away. idata and now transitioning to julian. 80% it's kate evolving off the coast of africa. that's another one we're watching closely. >> wow. five hours as category 4 hurricane over land. remarkable. it shows you how big it is. we'll talk to you soon. rescue efforts about to ramp up significantly in louisiana. we'll speak to a member of the cajun navy. that's next. frank is a fan of fast. he's a fast talker. a fast walker. thanks, gary. and for unexpected heartburn... frank is a fan of pepcpcid. it works in minutes. nexium 24 hour and prilosec otc can take one to four days to fully work. pepcid. strong relief for fans of fast.
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underway in louisiana this morning. among the crews are members of the volunteer rescue group the cajun navy. they're assembling boats lending resources to high-water rescues and other concerns. >> for more on the effort, we'll bring in jordy westworth from the cajun navy. it's one of the reasons they asked people to get out of the way because they're so worried about this particular period when you have people asking for help in a dangerous situation and help can't quite get there just yet. still too dangerous. where are we on the spectrum of hunkering down to full blown rescues? >> caller: we are getting close to rescues than the hunkering down part, thankfully. it's been a long night waiting to get to sunrise and better conditions to get to some of the people that are trapped. >> we're hearing reports of downed bridges and water levels
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as high as people's chests, in some cases. to any victims potentially listening to this, if they can, given the power situation. what advice can you offer to help them through now? >> caller: as hard as it is, just try to remain calm. if you can get on top of something, stay out of the water. do that. we'll come. help is on its way as soon as daylight comes. we'll be there as soon as possible along with all the law enforcement. >> yeah. this is a dangerous storm. you've got flying debris. you can't have people out there in boats trying to get to attics and people's homes just quite yet. and the anniversary of katrina interesting here. ida made landfall on the 16th anniversary to the day of katrina. we know there were a lot of improvements made, you know, to sort of, you know, protect against storm surge and the like. tell us living through these,
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how do they compare on the ground what you're seeing? >> without getting to seeing exactly what has been impacted and how much yet, i don't think area wise it's quite as much flood damage as katrina was. there's several impacts in areas but not as much of a coverage area being flooded like katrina. but the storm seems to have a ton of wind damage along with it for a bigger area. they all vary a little bit. and somewhat lived up to be as bad as of a storm they said it was going to be. you know, record winds and gusts and storm surge possibilities. it's definitely wasn't a good one. >> yeah. each of these storms has its own sort of fingerprint. i know after hurricane katrina, billions of dollars were spent on flood management to make sure the water event wouldn't be the problem.
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this is a wind event. >> do you feel like you have what you need to prepare for something like this. there have been reports for some time that things could be pretty ugly. do you feel you have the resources on the ground to have what you need? >> caller: yes. i think we have everything in place. this is our 60th year doing this, unfortunately. it's the situation we help in but we kind of have what we need down to a science, for the most part. >> remind our viewers you know what the cajun navy is. the group of volunteers with your, you know, personal boats and how you coordinate these rescues. >> caller: yeah. that's pretty much exactly it. we're just a group of local mainly volunteers. you know, have some of these resources of our own and we pull them together and put everything together and coordinate to be
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ready to go out and help anyone we can when the storms come. you know, if we can save more life, then it's worth it. >> to anyone that might be up early watching us, at this hour, is there anything the public can do, obviously right now stay safe as possible, but anything you want people to know? >> caller: yes, ma'am. you can follow on facebook. we have live updates there. we'll have posted for different supplies and things we need like water, toiletries. we set up distribution centers in the aftermath to get some of the victims on their feet. there's also a donate button that will help us buy food that we cook for hot meals. get gas for our rescue efforts and things like that. we can always use help. some people think because they're not here and don't have a boat they can't help. but we can almost certainly find a way for everyone to help. >> wow.
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that's certainly something i know a lot of people want to know. thank you so much for your work! jordy, stay safe, sir, of the cajun navy. breaking overnight rockets fired at the kabul airport. who is responsible for the latest aggression as the u.s. withdrawal winds down? did. e becausem but i wasted up to 20 gallons of water every time. now, we just scrape and load. finish quantntum works withot pre-rinsing, cleaning your dishes to a shine. join the millions of americans skipping the rinse to o save r water.
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breaking overnight as many as five rockets fired over kabul's airport with the final day of u.s. withdrawal one day way. what do we know about the rocket attack, nick? >> reporter: yeah. as of this morning, last heard
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near hamid karzai international airport. we're in the final moments there. five rockets seemed to have been fired in its direction. initial reports suggesting once again they believe possibly isis-k may have been behind this. at this stage, no reports of casualties, but it adds to the general fever pitch, frankly, around that final moments of u.s. departure on the airport. it's unclear when it may be. we had a horrific 48 hours behind us in terms of the number of blasts heard in kabul. yesterday there was a drone strike on a compound in kabul. the u.s. saying it was defensive. they believe they were under imminent threat and they saw secondary explosions as a result of the drone strike. but after having initially said there were no indication of civilian casualties, they have said it's possible. we're assessing the results of
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the strike, which we know disrupted an imminent isis-k threat. it may have caused additional casualties. it's unclear what may have happened. we're nvlging further. we would be deeply saddened by any potential loss of life. from -- reports from the scene they have talked about eight or nine possible civilian casualties here including children. the u.s. is examining what happened in that that incident. shocking as it would potentially be. separately, we're also hearing, too, from taliban they are not interested in a proposal put forward by a number of countries for possibly establishing a safe zone in kabul. unclear how it would work. it would have been one of the bridges between where the european and u.s. allies are now, which is hoping they can continue these evacuations. that does seem viable at the civilian airport and they have assurances if people have the documentation they would be
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allowed to leave but at the same time, obviously, the notion of an area in kabul that is outside of taliban control is kind of unworkable. most importantly here is clearly a heightened threat environment for those remaining troops on hamid karzai international airport. it's unclear who is behind the recent blasts. initial reports suggests eisis- but it's a fast-evolving situation. >> yeah. looking at live pictures the airport and not seeing much movement there. let's talk about what happens next. the u.s. and other countries putting out statements saying they're going to put it to the taliban to allow people to leave after tomorrow. how is it supposed to work? >> reporter: it's part of the general game of leverage between the taliban, who so far appear to have left the united states to leave in orderly fashion. even provided perimeter
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security. who have so far not publicly necessarily conducted revenge attacks many were concerned about inside of kabul. it may have been happening outside of the public view on a larger scale. so the taliban presenting a sort of more acceptable face in the international community. the critics suggesting it's purely a short term measure to get the airport running, a degree of international recognition or diplomatic channels existing with them because they need international aid and their bank accounts assessable around the world. this strong statement clearly a way of the international community banding together and saying to the taliban these are the things we want from you, if do you are going to get the things out of us we want. and the key thing the u.s. wants is get those remaining personnel and citizens it has inside kabul, afghanistan out and possibly to be able to continue to evacuate sib applicants after that airport is essentially handed over to the taliban on
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the 31st, tomorrow. it's unclear what the fate will be. but certainly things moving fast on that airport and real desire for the u.s. to be able to finish the job bringing out all the people it promises to. >> yeah. trying to get it done. nick paton walsh, thank you. hurricane ida devastating parts of louisiana. at least one person confirmed dead but the real rescue work just beginning. new orleans completely in the dark. life threatening storm surge a threat. cnn is live in louisiana.
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good morning. this is "early start." about 30 minutes past the hour in new york. parts of southeastern louisiana
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could be uninhabitable for weeks or months. a dire warning from the national weather service after hurricane ida made landfall on sunday as a category 4 storm. flash flooding and potential levy failures among the chief concerns this morning. ida is one of the most powerful storms to ever hit the state. tied only with laura last year. another storm more than 160 years ago. >> the full lines the emergency operation center are currently down. more than a million customers are without power. that's all of new orleans without power this morning. a tree fell on a home in prairieville killing the first victim of the storm. the national weather service is warning the heavy rain is causing flash flooding that has trapped residents. an official in jefferson parish said the dangerous conditions prevented emergency crews from helping people who stayed behind. >> caller: we lost contact with grand isle. that's the island on the gulf. i've been concerned about that.
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we lost contact with them. we have not been able to reach them. i don't know what they are going through. and closer up here outside the hurricane protection system, an area called -- the water is rising. people are in their homes and we're getting reports of people with water up to their chests. they're asking to be rescued. we just can't get out yet. >> in st. bernard parish, nearly develop dozen barges have broken loose threatening to damage the water intake. the parish president saying he's never seen relentless winds like this in his lifetime. we get to derek van dam live in oklahoma ma -- houma. >> reporter: we have endured some incredible things here. we really think about the people who didn't have the luxury of reinforced building that we had
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here in terrabonne parish. it was like a direct hit from ef 3 tornado. winds over 140 miles per hour for several hours. the wind was the major concern here. storm surge along the immediate coastline but the wind is what got us. you see, during a powerful cyclone like this is an eye. that's where we find the strongest winds. there's typically a reprieve when the eye moves over a location. oklah we were supposed to be that location but it pivoted over us. it was scary. it was like white knuckle driving on the roadway fin heav traffic for hours at a time. we have broken windows in some of the accommodations here. we had a natural gas leak.
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we've had trees falling over on some of the vehicles behind me in the parking lot. this is just our first glimpse of what the devastation is across the terrabonne parish. we're several hours from sunlight and daylight this morning. the familiar hum of generators in the background of people trying desperately to use whatever electricity they can have. we are running off the ac current from our suburban. and helicopters have flown around occasionally. there have been a few emergency personnel driving up-and-down the streets here but that's the only vehicles we've seen this morning on the roadways because you can imagine it's almost impossible to pass through the streets of houma at the moment. while so much talk about here. so much reporting. there will be nonstop coverage of this storm as it continues to unfold here in the hours to come. >> derek, i think it's important to remind people the dangerous
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part, honestly, is just beginning now, too, as people start to creep out maybe too soon. we should really warn people watch out for the generators. watch out for flying debris and things under the water. i mean, we've covered so many of these storms. we know there will be fatalities because of things that will happen next. everyone be careful. >> reporter: hard-toed shoes are a necessity as you venture outside. this morning as we walked outside the hotel, there were overturned shingles, overturned wood with nails sticking through. it will quickly ruin your day if you step on that. >> thank you so much, derek. typically the ninth named storm of the hurricane season forms around september 15th. this 2021 season about three weeks ahead of schedule with the monster ida. we'll go to our meteorologist who is tracking this storm for us. so what should we expect over the next 24 hours? >> we're still seeing tropical
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storm force winsds with the particular hurricane force with the particular storm. incredibly 13 hours removed from landfall maintaining that hurricane intensity. the center crossing into southern mississippi. i think another 6 to 8 inches of rainfall in store across the area. and it made landfall as category 4 150 miles per hour sustained winds. with that said, over a million customers without power from mississippi to portions of louisiana. we're looking at generally three to four people per customer so about 3 to 4 million people without power across the two states and it speaks to the intensity of the storm. you know, the rainfall estimated totals exceeding about a foot or so just around the northern portion of new orleans there. northwest of new orleans. and we know the levy systems across the state becoming a stress at this hour. several of them have failed across the state of louisiana.
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about 300 levy systems dot the landscape. you stretch the levy system in the mileage of the levies themselves and it stretches about 3200 miles. you can take it from new york city to los angeles and beyond. that's kind of the amount of coverage of levies that dot the landscape. this amount of rainfall going to put strain on the levies in this region and notice the system here as it moves across the state of mississippi on monday we expect the heavy rainfall to push north and east of the region and potentially through the tennessee valley come tuesday into wednesday. finally picks up a little bit of forward speed and moves out of here. but you noted when we typically see the ninth named storm. what is interesting, laura, of the storms, the "i" is the most retired letter of any storm in any national hurricane center data. we've had irma, ivan, irene. incredible. it looks like this particular one in idaida is going down in record books. you off into the atlantic, we
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have our letter "j" julian and "k" in the works with kate. >> i know we're about to get another update soon at the top of the 5:00 a.m. hour. we'll come back shortly. hurricane ida battering louisiana as covid fills the state's hospital system. more than 2500 people in louisiana have been hospitalized with covid in recent days. 2500. and now the same hospitals have to deal with the aftermath of this epic storm. >> we had a long night ahead of us. we keep our fingers crossed people need to hunker down. those that want to help, help with the red cross. they have sent 500 people as well as the cajun navy and other boats that come in from other states and catholic charities. they'll play a big role as we have to move people to shelters and compounded with the sheeters, jim, the shelters can't hold as many people because we have a big covid
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outbreak here because the people refuse to take the shot and the hospitals are full. >> joining us now is alan levine, former secretary of health of florida and louisiana. familiar with emergency services during a hurricane. thank you for your time this morning. louisiana hospitals have had enough on their hands in recent weeks. now hurricane ida complicates everything that much more. what is status of the hospitals and their patients. >> you know before a hurricane hospitals before the coast will try to evacuate or discharge patients. that was made obviously more complicated by the fact they had almost 2500 patients in hospitals with covid that couldn't be discharged. the hospitals that were stressed going into this in a unique situation. now the additional challenge for them is i think what we can expect as we go into today and we start seeing the damage and surveying the damage that has been done to the hospitals, we'll probably see additional evacuations. prior to the storm, some
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patients were evacuated to northern louisiana and other parts that are not in the direct path of the storm. but i think we need to prepare ourselves to see some real devastation today. these hospitals, particularly the staffs that were already fatigued before, i think they're going to be hit pretty hard. i spoke to the secretary of health earlier this morning, and she shared with me they are doing some things in the state to try to minimize the ers from getting overrun. people with ongoing oxygen needs call 2-1-1 call oxygen exchanges to keep the burden off the hospital. >> whether they can call the number i think might be one of the challenges. how do you avoid a covid outbreak? or i guess how do you make sure it doesn't get even worse. it's not good with the movement and mixing of the residents in the coming days. how do you avoid the worst? >> well, that's going a big
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challenge. obviously, as you go into cities on the coast that have no electricity, there's going to be a need for sheltering. as people get sheltered, it's going to be a challenge. you have to do social distancing. obviously the state has a mask mandate which they need to have to prevent the spread. it's going to be a challenge. and, of course, at a time when the hospitals don't need the additional strain for more cases. so as much as it's important to i would say stay put now. search and rescue is coming but there's going to be a need for sheltering. i know the governor has taunted trying to get hotel rooms and other things to get less cong congregate sheltering. there's going to be a lot of people who need shelter. >> i rode out hurricane gustauv with thousands of people. i can't imagine it now in the
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era of covid. people stacked in bunk beds and in big rooms that's, obviously, not going to work here. you worked alongside fema during the storms in the past. what steps will be taken post ida to help with the destruction on the ground and the victims, do you think? >> well, that work began at the state level and the federal level. there are search and rescue teams already staged. there are disaster and medical systems staged. as soon as there's daylight and a chance to do assessment of where the needs are, you'll see the search and rescue teams fan out. hospitals have at least five to ten days for fuel for their generators. they'll clearly need it as there's no electricity and likely won't be for awhile. i think fema generally is very good at staging at the discretion of the state. they'll be directed by the governor and his allegations as to where the needs are based on local needs. i think right now i think people need to prepare for to see real
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devastation when the sunrises this morning. >> the chairman and ceo of ballad health. thank you for getting up with us. we appreciate it. the other top story. the u.s. launches a second strike targeting isis-k. why the taliban and their sworn enemy is condemning the strikes. next. expense report! if you're using multiple systems, re-entering data over and over time sheet! using email and spreadsheets to manage information and approvals, then your hr systems are a drag on productive time. 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
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welcome back. a stoic president biden at dover air force base watching over the flag-draped remains of 13 service-members who were killed in afghanistan last week. mr. biden is hoping to be the last u.s. president to attend a dignified transfer of war dead from that country. the 13 dead among the 6,000 troops that the president deployed to assist in this massive air lift evacuation. nick paton walsh joining us live from quatar. what is the status of the evacuation effort this morning? we're talking about over 117,000 people so far. where do things stand? >> reporter: yeah, last numbers suggested that the last 12-hour period which have been, at some point, i think on saturday heading into sunday saw about 900 people being taken off of
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the part evacuation reported by u.s. officials. it shows an enormous tampering off. we're in the end of the evacuation phase and the u.s. have been clear they'll take people until the last minute, if they could. that window is exceptionally small now. it i think it's being felt the u.s. didn't want to dice too much with the 31st of august deadline. that's the day they said they would be out by. it's not clear if it's the ending or beginning that has been agreed with the taliban at this stage. i think we're in the closing hours. there's a few c-17s coming in and out around the airport. it's unclear what status there is on the ground with remaining troops there. this is the most fraught moment, though, frankly. it was when the numbers were reduced when they got smaller they ran a risk of being more vulnerable for attack. surely there must be great coordination with the taliban that are at the gates of the airport on the outside. as of 24 hours ago, not
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controlling the gates, according to the pentagon but things exceptionally fluid and the security situation, i would say, pretty dire, frankly. there was a bomb attack that killed 13 u.s. service people and on top of that, we had this morning five rockets, it seems, launched in the direction of hamid karzai international airport intercepted there. initial reports suggesting isis-k may have been behind this. we're into a tight window here. one marked by a defensive u.s. posture. they said a strike yesterday, a drone strike was defensive and interrupted an imminent threat to their people at hamid karzai international airport suggesting they hit a car bomb or suicide bomber in a compound not far from the airport. subsequent reporting, though, local journalists working for cnn have spoken to those there and said there may have been a large number of casualties than the one suicide bomber the u.s. talked about. the u.s. first said there's no
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indications of civilian casualties, they subsequently released an updated statement. a large amount of explosive material were inside the car may have caused additional casualties. they said it's unclear but importantly they said we'll be deeply saddened by any potential loss of innocent life. reporting from the scene suggesting there could be as much as 9 additional casualties including children. a starng moment, certainly, but one that forms the security situation over the perilous hours ahead. >> the u.s. has launched two air strikes against isis-k. one in retaliation for last week's attack and this one to prevent another attack. taliban does not like isis-k. sworn enemies, actually. rivals here. but the taliban still condemning the u.s. air strikes. explain. >> reporter: yeah, i mean, the taliban's point has been stay
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out of our country to foreigners. that's what they've initially began the negotiations with. it was a demand for the foreign troops to leave. it looks like they'll get that demand come the end of the tuesday if not earlier. so strikes on the territory is something which they've condemned and will continue to condemn. that said, it's, of course, the case that isis-k an offshoot of isis that seems to have had some assistance from the syrian and iraqi version of isis that is formed by pakistan jihad movements across the borders they have become a competitor for the taliban. the taliban kind of bureaucratically indulgent organization that finds itself running afghanistan. it doesn't necessarily appeal to the more slightly radical younger people you might find drawn toward isis-k. the competition for recruitment base has caused them to be against each other and taliban
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units to go after isis-k and be in a death match here. while always jihad movements inside afghanistan are complicated and fluid and it's not simply a case of wearing one badge or another. everyone seems to know each other and there's a lot of marbling going on there, it's totally true that we are in this bizarre position where the u.s. is striking a terror group who they say and taliban accepts are their enemies but at the same time, too, the taliban are condemning the strikes. it's confusing end of the u.s. war here and deeply symbolic moment when the u.s. troops leave the airport. >> all the people in kabul now. some people in hiding because they're afraid of what the future brings. it's the next chapter, i'm afraid, will not any prettier than this one. nick paton walsh, thank you. >> thank you. france has been able to available nearly 3,000 people from afghanistan. cnn gained special access to one
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group of evacuees brought to paris through the tireless work of a former refugee. melissa bell has their incredible story. >> reporter: the very last french evacuations out of kabul. it left without incident but for those on board, afghans that nato promised to help, it was a frantic fight to find someone to get them into the airport. an angel who might be on the other side of the world. she has barely slept since kabul fell. it's 6:00 a.m. in the little corner of afghanistan he created in northern paris. from here he normally helps afghan asylum seekers in france. the chaos of kabul lead him into a new role of unofficial coordinator. through pin locations, he connected from paris those
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eligible for evacuation who sent pictures of themselves and locations to help connect them with french officials on the other side of the fence. french diplomatic sources confirmed his crucial role in helping people like zara who spent three days outside the airport. she explains she wasn't well. she sent this photo saying she might die if she didn't get help. what's app messages upon which life and death hangs. cnn has changed the names for security reasons. my parents are out, asks one desperate woman, please help them. in another, abdul disappeared, said one person stuck outside. we are alone in the canal. abdul is inside replies a french official. the canal marks the spot where the meetings happen. near abbie gate. those who reached the other side are saved.
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by monday afternoon, zara's group crossed the canal, met their contact, and reached safety. the journey has brought him to this door. he knows all too well the heart ache and hope of finding refuge. it's his connection to those he's helped. thank god the two escaped hell, he says, but there are other friends who are still stuck. zara said she can't believe she knew war as a young girl and still now as an old woman. she says she's happy to be released from the pressure of the taliban but so sad to have left her homeland, her children, her friends, and her beloved afghanistan. mixed emotions that are shared by the evacuees and the man who helped bring a group of strangers to safety.
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with the images on their phones still etched indelibly on their minds. melissa bell, cnn, paris. >> amazing. this is #digitaldunkirk. people inside kabul, inside the country, in qatar, in germany, in the united states everyone where are sharing pictures and videos trying to put together and get them out. it's remarkable. more on the breaking news coverage on ida and afghanistan is next. plus, a big endorsement for vaccine mandates in schools. in? at new chapter, its' innovation, organic ingredients, and fermentation. fermentation? yes. formulated to help you body really truly absorb the natural goodness. new chapter. wellness, well done.
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and just doubled the capacity here. how do things look on your end? -perfect! because we're building a better network every single day. hurricane ida targeting the heart of america's energy industry.
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more than 95% of the gulf of mexico oil production shut down in the base of the largest storms to ever land here. six refineries in the new orleans areas shut down. about 1.7 million barrels a day. three refineries in the baton rouge area including exxon scaled back. disruption could mean higher gas prices for drivers. gas prices rose 46 cents the week after hurricane katrina hit in 2005. they stayed high for two months. today the average gallon is $3.14. happening in the backdrop of this monster storm, of course, is covid. now dr. anthony fauci lending his support for vaccine mandates in schools. he acknowledges there's going to be strong pushback but the nation's top infectious disease specialist said the benefit to risk ratio makes it a no brainer. >> i believe that mandating vaccines for children to appear in school is a good idea. >> this is not something new. we have mandates in many places
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in schools, particularly public schools, that have, in fact, you want a child to come in. we've done it for decades and decades requiring polio, measles, mumps, hepatitis. it would not be something new. >> how transmissible is the delta variant? there's an elementary school in california. an unvaccinated teacher made an exception for story time. she took off the mask to read to her class. by the time she tested positive two days later, half the class of 24 had been infected and the outbreak spread to other classes, siblings, and parents. she had gone to school -- she didn't feel well and thought she would power through it. we're way past powering through it if you don't feel well, folks, especially if you're not vaccinated. >> "early start" starts now. welcome to our viewers i

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