digs deeper into the stories of the day. and at 9:00, get a global perspective. weeknights, on al jazeera america. >> a step forward. >> president obama and president castro made a courageous decision for today and tomorrow. >> a new age of relation as the american flag is raised in hoorch fohavana for the first tn five decades. mixed emotions at home and
on the island that still call home. disturbing revelations that i.s.i.l. may be using chemical weapons against kurdish in iraq. hitting the soapbox, the iowa state fair as candidates for the white house get up close and personal with voters. good evening, i'm libby casey. this is al jazeera america. antonio mora is on assignment in cuba and we'll check in with him in a moment. we begin with an historic change in the caribbean island. for the first time in 50 years the american flag is flying high over the u.s. embassy in havana. john kerry presided over the ceremony. hundreds of guests and cuban on lookers were there to watch the ceremony. we get more from melissa sa chan
in havana. >> it has actually functioned as an embassy for almost a month now. but if symbols are important, the fact that the embassy waited for john kerry to raise the stars and stripes is proof that pomp and circumstance matter. >> my friends we are gathered here because our leaders, president obama and president castro made a courageous decision to focus on the opportunities of today and tomorrow. this doesn't mean that we circulate or will forget the past. how could we, after all? >> symbols and poetic details marked the occasion. the first surreal moment: the u.s. band playing the cuban national anthem. on friday, the same three american marines who had taken the u.s. flag down 54 years ago, helped raise it again in havana,
partially marrying the ceremony in washington a few weeks ago when they chose to use the same flag used 50 years ago. >> why we should have had so many years tension between our two countries, beautiful island, beautiful people and our country as powerful as it is would be so -- treat the people with such disdain is so terrible. i'm so glad we're past that point in time. >> it's an important step and it's beautiful. after so many decades and so many generations and so many conflicts between the generations it's beautiful. it's good for cuba, good for the united states but we should wait and see. >> reporter: fidel castro once called this building a nest of spies and until recently it was known as the u.s. intersection. about 50 american staffers work here. as an embassy that number will increase. but normalization does not mean
the u.s. and cuba actually have a normal relationship. differences remain highlighted by the press conference in the afternoon. >> there needs to be a process established for working them through. and the path to full normalization is not always going to be easy. we both understand that. >> translator: i have emphasized to the secretary of state the lifting of the blockade in our opinion is an essential element for us in order to have normal relations with the united states. >> reporter: still, whoever expected to see this, a u.s. secretary of state walking the cobble stones of historic old havana. the two nations, the closest they've been in most of our lifetimes. melissa chan, al jazeera, havana. intertoday's ceremonial flag raising drew a anchor us of
opposition. marco rubio, the cuban american says president obama is restoring diplomatic relations with the country. >> in america we celebrate a proud antigovernment opposition, every value our nation holds dear, the in the eyes of barack obama and hillary clinton his form he secretary of state, had cuban people are suffering because not enough american tourists are visiting that state, but in truth it's a tyrannical dictatorship. >> urged the u.s. to maintain its tough policy towards cuba but for some the renewed operations offer a renewed relation with their home land. rob reynolds has more. >> small groups of cuban
american protesters gathered on this street corner the symbolic heart of the little havana neighborhood. they held signs denouncing president obama as a traitor and saying he caved in to the castro brothers. there were scattered clarks as welclashes, aswell as protesterh each other. nobody was badly hurt or taken away in an ambulance. those scuffles while somewhat dramatic on camera were less dramatic when seen from the street. now the normalization of relation between cuba and the united states has split the cuban american community. the elderly people, most of whom demonstrated here today in small numbers, are veterans of the time when they left cuba during castro's revolution after the fall of the dictator, bautista.
they have memories of that era but further generations have grown up over the last 50 years without those memories and in addition, cubans have migrated to the united states free reply in relatively significant numbers over the past several decades. so those cubans of the younger generation and the more recent arrivals are more likely to see normalization of relations as a good thing, as an inevitable thing and even the potential of economic benefits some business ties. that's all a long way off because cuba's laws really are not the kind of laws that would encourage people to invest in the country unless they were extremely tolerant of risk. >> rob reynolds in miami. and now we go to havana where antonio mora joins us life. he's been reporting from havana all this week leading up to
these historic events. antonio, gooevening. today was certainly symbolic and significant for governments of cuba and the united states but does it mean real change for the people of cuba? >> you know libby i think it will mean incremental change for the people of cuba and probably be quicker change for people in the big tourist area in havana and the baradaro beach resort where more money is going to come in. but it will take time. and the reality though, things are moving quickly, since the normalization was announced in december, the number of americans coming here as grown by a third. so that money is at some point going to trickle down to the cuban people. the cuban government will take the lion's share of it but certainly the people will benefit somewhat from it, especially those who have become purely and lawned private
businesses approved by the government. >> what are the biggest challenges the people are facing? >> there are -- it is a long list libby but the biggest one of course is poverty. the average salary here is only a little more than $20 a month. and then the other big challenge is housing. the housing stock is very limited and there are estimates that two-thirds or more of the housing stock in havana is in dire need of repair. one example we were just walk through havana and i saw a building that was crumbling, i thought oh let's film this to see the contrast between the beautiful buildings and that are there. all of a sudden i saw th peoplen the top floor, and we decided to climb up. we got upstairs and talked to the people and the reality is they just live this very, very rough life where water pours from the ceiling ever time it
rains and comes through the windows. so poverty and housing are the two biggest issues for them libby. >> antonio mora, live from havana, thank you. coming up at the bottom of the hour our lisa fletcher is taking a look at the changing relationship with cuba, that's on "inside story," 11:30 eastern, 8:30 pacific. water from the animas river is back to preincident levels and officials in colorado have reopened the river to boaters. >> make no mistake, we will hold the epa accountable and keep the epa honest when they say they intend to hold themselves accountable to an even higher standard.
than a private business. >> meanwhile, allen schauffler looked into what's being done to get water to people in need in new mexico. >> we're on the banks of the animas river the lower stretches of the river in farmington, new mexico. kim carp enter is the county executive. it's been nine days since the spill at gold king mine, almost a week since it's come through here. how are people handling it here? >> as time goes by without me lifting the restriction on the river, people are hurting. people who live along the river that you know are hurting, where we're having to bring them supply and water, and -- >> how are you hoping the homeless population? >> we have set up with the department of health the fire stations and a number of groups to bring water, deliver water, we've delivered almost 400,000 gallons of water to farmers
trying to not necessarily -- it's not keeping their crops growing but it's trying to sustain and buy time to see when we can get the waterway back open and to get water for their livestock. >> that is the key, water quality and water availability at this point, thanks very much kim i appreciate it. i have to say i took a short run this morning along the tremendous stretch of riverside trail they have in farmington. i saw hundreds of ducks and one little skunk. lots of wildlife living along this river, that's been one positive in all this mess, no report of significant dieoff, fish foul four legged or insect wildlife. that's short term. long term what's the impact on animals and humans, that's shadowing all of this. allen schauffler, farmington, new mexico.
>> fire caused several employees, fire under control now -- explosions, fire under control now, but residents living within two miles of the plant have been ordered to evacuate and residents have been ordered to keep their windows and doors closed. officials in china raise the death toll to 80. meanwhile a 19-year-old firefighter is recovering after being pulled from the rubble this morning. he had been trapped for about 32 hours after responding to two blasts at a whit warehouse in te northern city of tienjin. several toxic chemicals one that can catch fire when it comes in contact with water however the exact cause of the blast is still not clear. a new report suggests that i.s.i.l. has gotten its hands on chemical weapons and used it on
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trying to prevent the release of a guantanamo prisoner release. want to get him out of the prison immediately, baoda had been released to yemen but the u.s. no longer sends prisoners there because of the instability in the country. now to iraq, where kurds are claiming islamic state is using chemical weapons against them. jamie mcintire is at the pentagon with more. >> libby, two major cases out of the pentagon, stories that islamic state may have used chemical weapons on kurdish fighters, through german
authorities who are working with the kurds. believe they have encountered a chemical agent they were having trouble breathing and some suffered what looked like chemical burns. the u.s. is investigating whether mustard gas may have been university by soldiers in the north or chlorine gas. they can't confirm that but are taking these reports very seriously because they believe it is the kind of thing i.s.i.l. would do if they had that ability. the pentagon is updating us of the efforts to retake ramadi in the anbar province. it's been very slow going since then, today the central command said that the iraqi forces are in the second phase of the isolation portion of the mission, which is a mission to completely encircle ramadi or in the words of the central command today put a noose around the neck of i.s.i.l.
they say that is still going on and it's very slow because the iraqi forces have to clear explosive devices a.i.d ieds, al take back on the time line it has established. libby. >> let's bring in douglas olivant. how significant is this, if i.s.i.l. has indeed gotten its hands on mustard gas and is using it as a weapon? >> it could make some minor tactical gains, i think in the big picture, just as the assad regime has found out that while you can have a minor tactical effect the larger scale use of chemical weapons really doesn't buy you much. i think the islamic state will find out the same thing.
this is truly a heinous weapon that the civilized world has rejected, that i.s.i.l. has reportedly picked up or we have reports they picked up. but it isn't changing the calculus because it took erbil. >> out old iraqi stock piles perhaps even making it themselves how significant is that detail? >> i don't think too terribly significant. the likelihood is exactly in the order you gave them. the preponderance of likelihood would be that they are from syria, from assad's stock piles. there is a smaller chance these could be really old left over iraqi weapons from the saddam baath era. almost certainly they are from syria if they have them. >> that doesn't strike a chord even politically?
we have talked earlier about president obama making major strides into syria because of the use of chemical weapons. >> the islamic state has used chemical weapons. does that change what people think about islamic state? yes, they use chemical weapons, they behead captives, they burn pilots that they capture. in this range of heinous acts, i'm not sure that chemical weapons change that moral calculus i'm afraid. >> what does this mean to the kurds? >> the kurds are evidently carrying gas masks when they go. it adds a layer of logistical. when you have to carry chemical weapon gear, it's not fun to carry it and less fun to wear it.
>> in this potential development you have contextualized it in your opinion but we are certainly paying attention to it and you call chemical weapons heinous yourself. >> they are heinous, so is running mass rape camps. i don't think this really changes our opinion of the islamic state, if we are going to have some moral outrage that was going to change what we're doing, i don't think why should change what we're doing, that's not what i'm saying, but if there was reason to do it we would have crossed the line a long time ago. >> douglas olivant, thank you for joining us. >> good evening. greece is breathing a sigh of relief after its european creditors approved a new bailout package, greece will receive new loans up to $95 billion over the next three years. immediately, 29 billion, as part
baby was stolen five decades ago. earlier this year zella jackson price claims her daughter was be a deducted from hoarm phillips s hospital. anyone who is anyone will be at the iowa state fair, in des moines. al jazeera john terret is here. good evening john. >> i am. every four years we get to do this one because along with the butter coul cow, the eye popping food, politicians of all stripes will be rubbing shoulder with the good folk of iowa, and the republican front runner is offering incentive to the kiddy
winkles. in the hope that mom and dad will vote for him. the beginning of political season so roll up roll up your favorite candidates democrats and republicans are bound to be here especially the gop hopefuls. starting with donald trump, in new hampshire tonight he's planning a big arrival by offering free helicopter rides. instagram, he's telling my immigration paper my tax paper they're pretty much done but i don't want to do them in august, i'll wait until september. >> let me start with a recommendation pork chop on a stick. >> it's a unique relation between iowa state fair goer gos
politicians. eating on bales of hay, eat oreos and struggle to stay up with donald trump. and attack hillary. >> she had a duty to do a high level secretary of state, that she had a duty to protect that information. >> failed in that duty? >> completely. >> and arkansas governor mike huckabee, relentlessly peddling his fair tax policy. >> how do we get the economy four to 5%, i believe we can get it to 6 with the fair tax. >> and the people of des moines, it's a chance to put themselves in the e epicenter, and the chae to see the butter coul cow, ande chance to see the candidates a month from now, september 16th. >> you knew the butter cow was going to be in there someplace,
libby, traveling from to iowa, after the state fair donald trump will be in new york for jury duty. that is the donald is going to be on someone's case literally here in this cities on monday morning. >> and of course everyone is a voter, fellow jurors, everyone in that courtroom too. >> funny if he was picked for jury service. >> it could go either way. thank you john. the most iconic moments in u.s. history, a nurse kissing a sailors. dozens of people reenacted the kiss to commemorate the kiss, to commemorate the 70th anniversary of vj day. two navy veterans who were married on the day after vj day kicked off the festivities.
a planet roughly twice the size of jupiter has been discovered, 96 light years from earth. it could lend evidence of how the solar system was formed. i'm libby casey, thanks. >> while many cheered the raising of the american flag in havana not all cuban americans are overjoyed about the reopening of the u.s. embassy in cuba. for some memories of repression at the hands of the castros are stilt raw. even with tensions easing and change coming some cuban americans will find that going home is not that easy. returning to cuba, it is the "inside story"