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tv   Nightline  ABC  January 20, 2022 12:37am-1:06am PST

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♪ this is "nightline." >> tonight, devastation in tonga. the small pacific island nation ravaged by an undersea volcanic eruption. >> there's this boom. we sort of looked at each other, something strange going on. >> setting off tsunamis across the world.ations sll dn. no way for desperate families to reach loved ones. >> none of us have heard from anybody. >> the massive effort to get critical supplies ashore. and how the pandemic is adding danger to the efforts. plus sister versus sister. the fierce feud between britney and jamie lynn escalating. >> britney seems incredibly angry. >> after the story jamie lynn told us of a frightened britney locking them in a room with a knife.
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>> i was a kid. in that moment i was scared. but also was so upset that she didn't feel safe. >> and why the lawyers are now involved. and remembering andre leon talley, the ever-stylish fashion journalist who shattered barriers. you are an electric vehicle. electricity powers your heart. want to feel your heart beat faster? drive an electric car. made by a company whose evs have gone five billion miles. for every highway... every driveway... ...and every speedway. and where the loudest sound... the beat of your electric heart. this is the new nissan. ♪ ♪
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thanks for joining us. people around the world tonight desperately waiting for news from their loved ones on the island nation of tonga. as the scale of the devastation from this weekend's volcano is starting to become clear, aid agencies racing to send assistance. but the pandemic is complicating everything. abc's chief national correspondent matt gutman reports tonight from fiji. >> it started on saturday evening. we're leaving home. to see someone just before 6:00 p.m. then there's this boom. then the house started -- there's a little shake, but the glass continued to shake. we sort of looked at each other, something strange going on. >> reporter: tahalo kami describing what he experienced on fiji last weekend as that submarine volcano exploded, shock waves rocking fiji, where he was, 500 miles away. >> the big concern was, what's
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happened? and by then the news is coming about this massive explosion. so you're getting a lot of information on how bad it is, but nothing with family. >> reporter: a once in century eruption cutting off the island nation of tonga from the world for nearly five days now. the scope of the damage now slowly starting to take shape. >> one of the unique things about this eruption is the incredible explosion and the tsunami. there have been other submarine or shallow submarine eruptions that have created explosions, created small tsunami. but nothing to this scale, at least not in the last several decades. >> reporter: the volcano's explosion coating the polynesian nation's lush greenery with a thick layer of ash. from the air, entire islands seemingly bleached of color. we're now seeing those first images from the ground.
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cars smothered in ash. streets disappeared under rubble. shipping containers piled up like lego. livelihoods destroyed. the united nations is reporting three fatalities with many still missing. on friday, that plume of smoke and ash shooting up more than ten miles into the stratosphere as an undersea volcanic eruption shook the south pacific. the blast taking place near the collection of remote islands of tonga over 1,500 miles east of australia. >> the sound that it made is certainly among the loudest sounds that we know of, on par with meteor explosions in the atmosphere. it was obviously an incredibly powerful sound. but that it was heard so far away, it was heard in alaska, is pretty incredible. >> reporter: then saturday, a second eruption. the tongan government saying that one spawned near 50-foot tsunami waves. and satellite imagery showing the aftermath.
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chunks of islands gouged out. brown sludge left behind. the u.n. reporting 84% of tonga's population was impacted by the volcano and the tsunamis. those tsunamis racing thousands of miles across the pacific ocean. the powerful waves reaching peru, blamed for two deaths there, and an oil spill off the coast of lima. in japan, dozens of miyako city residents fleeing homes after a tsunami advisory was issued there. the waves capsizing fishing boats. causing damage on the beaches and piers of california. >> we are surviving a tsunami out here in pacifica. i can tell you, it is happening, y'all, it is happening. >> reporter: in tonga, some of the damage assessment has begun. the new zealand and australian air forces assisting with fly-overs of the area. because the islands are relatively flat, those tsunami waves washing right over many of them.
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in some islands, almost no structures were left standing. the united nations reporting significant damage on mango, fonoifua, and the main island. >> communications both national and international have been severed due to damage sustained by the submarine cables. some slight communication was established with some of the outer islands through satellite phones and radios. >> reporter: with saltwater and ash having seeped into almost everything, fresh drinking water is most critically in need. >> issues we're going to see are clean water, health issues, a little bit of food security issues. and of course also there's been some inundation from tsunami waves into the island. we know that some parts are more damaged than others. >> reporter: heavy ashfall making it nearly impossible for planes to land on the main island. >> indeed, the clear-up operation, one of the priorities was the -- is the airport, obviously. but the ash has proven more difficult to clear than was
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expected. >> reporter: warships from new zealand and australia bringing in supplies, a much slower process. >> we will provide whatever is required. whatever is asked of us by tonga, we will provide that support. they're a very important family member within our region, and we take very seriously our responsibility to provide support to them. >> reporter: the aid so desperately needed could prove dangerous. the island has remained nearly covid free with a single case in two years. boasting a 90% vaccination rate for 12-year-olds and up. officials fear that relief workers could bring supplies but also covid-19, further devastating this vulnerable island. >> they've been very cautious about opening their borders, like many pacific islands are, because of the history of disease outbreaks in the pacific which have wiped out societies here. >> reporter: for now the tongan government requesting all aid be air-dropped or delivered without contact. the search for survivors also
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fraught with logistical complications. the tongan government confirming at least three dead, a 49-year-old male from nomuka island, from mango island, a 65-year-old island, and a british national, 50-year-old angela glover. >> i haven't got the words in my vocabulary to even describe how we're feeling at the moment. this is a terrible shock that's happened to us. we're ordinary people. stuff like this just doesn't happen to people like us. but then it does. >> reporter: in tonga, residents unable to communicate with the outside world due to heavily damaged phone and internet lines. in the san francisco bay area this weekend, families desperate to hear from loved ones on the islands. >> none of us have heard from anybody. >> reporter: reverend tumani is the pastor of first tongan assembly of god church in san carlos. his son is in tonga. >> we still trust.
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even though we haven't heard from them in almost 24 hours now. but we believe. have hope that something good's going to come out from this. i'm just asking anybody who believes in god, please remember tonga in your prayers. >> reporter: the u.n. estimates it could take about a month to repair the telecommunications line to tonga. meanwhile, scientists say there could still be more volcanic activity to come. >> underwater volcanos are really notoriously hard to monitor. you can't just go out and put an instrument down in the ground. there's no ground to put it on. submarine instrumentation is very expensive and difficult to maintain. vigilance is important because the eruption, the overall eruption, may not be over yet. >> reporter: tahalo kami over the past 24 hours getting the news he'd been so desperate to hear that his sister and brother and their families are safe. a nation's prayers answered. >> at this stage, we think we've seen a miracle in terms of coming out of this. it could have been far, far worse.
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>> our thanks to matt. up next, the spears sisters, britney and jamie lynn. their sibling feud lighting up social media. once-weekly ozempic® can help. ♪ oh, oh, oh, ozempic®! ♪ ♪ oh, oh, oh ♪ ozempic® is proven to lower a1c. most people who took ozempic® reached an a1c under 7 and maintained it. and you may lose weight. adults lost on average up to 12 pounds. in adults also with known heart disease, ozempic® lowers the risk of major cardiovascular events such as heart attack, stroke, or death. ozempic® helped me get back in my type 2 diabetes zone. ozempic® isn't for people with type 1 diabetes. don't share needles or pens, or reuse needles. don't take ozempic® if you or your family ever had medullary thyroid cancer, or have multiple endocrine neoplasia syndrome type 2, or if allergic to it. stop ozempic® and get medical help right away if you get a lump or swelling in your neck,
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♪ britney spears is now lashing out at her younger sister, jamie lynn, taking to social media where she's accusing her of lying about their relationship in interviews for her new book and trying to profit from britney's fame. when i spoke to her last week, jamie lynn talked about her sister and her reasons for speaking out now.
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do you worry that by speaking your truth, that it will harm your relationships? >> well, nobody ever really considered me. but i think that everyone is still allowed to say their truth. >> reporter: jamie lynn spears describes growing up in the chaotic spears family. the relentless pressure of chasing stardom taking its toll. ♪ i know you see me standing here ♪ >> reporter: overnight the nickelodeon star zoe 101 turned scandalized pregnant teenager. sharing her mental health struggles and her daughter's brush with death in her memoir "things i should have said." but her book generating international headlines and this story in particular seemingly striking a nerve with her superstar sister britney. in the book you describe an incident where britney takes a knife, says she's scared, and locks you and herself into a room. why did you want to include that in the book?
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>> because, first off, i think that experiencing my own panic attacks and how sometimes we can feel in those moments is important. but also, it's important to remember that i was a kid in that moment. i was scared. that was an experience i had. but i also was fearful to, like, really say anything because i didn't want to upset anybody. but also was so upset that she didn't feel safe. >> reporter: jamie lynn's newfound outspokenness pitting sister against sister, prompting britney to lash out on twitter. you've stooped to a whole new level of low. i have never been around you ever with a knife, and i would never think to do such. so please stop these crazy lies for hollywood books. britney repeatedly posting, deleting, and reposting lengthy, detailed messages on social media. at one point seemingly apologetic, and in another conflating the knife incident
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that her younger sister says happened decades ago with a more recent confrontation which jamie lynn says took place during the pandemic. in her book, jamie lynn describing a fight where it all came to a head. she came at me screaming and getting up in my face. while jamie lynn was holding her toddler, ivy, in her arms. >> she cursed at me. i walked out of the room. we're all family under one roof, i'm not trying to argue. when i tried to remove myself from the situation, that's -- when i guess she just got really angry. and my oldest daughter tried to, you know, mediate the situation. i hated that. like, that's not what you're supposed to do, you're 12. >> reporter: rather than respect everyone's feelings, jamie lynn says her family was reverting to unhealthy patterns. her parents' response? >> they told me that i shouldn't be upset, like i can't upset britney. i said, you just saw me and my children be upset, when will i matter?
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>> reporter: jamie lynn says that she's finally standing up for herself, but her sister today posting this profanity-laden instagram post calling jamie lynn a selfish little brat and worse. >> britney seems incredibly angry at her sister. she is not happy with this book. she is taking big swings. she's attacking her. she's mocking her. >> reporter: and now britney's legal team joining the fray, sending this cease and desist letter to her sister, accusing jamie lynn of exploiting britney for monetary gain and warning that publicly airing false or fantastical grievances is wrong, especially when designed to sell books. it is also potentially unlawful and defamatory. >> britney is basically telling jamie lynn, stop it. stop talking about me. and if you don't, you're going to be in big trouble. >> reporter: britney's legal team also taking aim at her father, jamie spears. britney's 13-year
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conservatorship and her father's role overseeing it was officially terminated by a judge in november. but that hasn't stopped the legal battle. today, britney's attorneys were in court fighting jamie spears' request to have britney's estate pay his substantial legal fees. in court filings, britney's lawyers claim her father paid himself at least $6 million over 13 years for his role as conservator and engaged in self-dealing, financial, and business mismanagement, accusing him of seeking to siphon even more money from his daughter. attorneys for jamie spears said in court, the allegations are false or taken out of context. >> there is a presumption that when you are the conservator of the estate, you get a salary. you get a certain amount of money. he's entitled to that. their position is that he engaged in wrongdoing, and as a result, that he shouldn't get that payment. >> reporter: the conservatorship began in 2008. britney was being hounded by the
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paparazzi and losing custody of her two young sons. after two hospitalizations, the court first gave britney's father, jamie, legal control over britney's personal, professional, and financial affairs. last summer at the height of the free britney movement, britney spoke out in court against the conservatorship, calling it abusive and overly controlling. the pop star saying she wanted to sue her family, lashing out at her father in particular, saying he should be put in jail. britney also adding that her family profited off of her for years. >> britney really was the breadwinner from a very young age. that is one of the problems with childhood stardom is that children are not supposed to be making the money to support their entire family. >> reporter: jamie lynn says she too tried to help her big sister, responding on instagram, brit, i am always here. you know behind the scenes i have always been here. >> i feel like i -- that's -- she was like -- like, i love her that much, and to have, you
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know -- it's just so innocent to love your siblings. and especially me because i loved her like she was my mama, you know? >> i wonder if you miss that innocent love, if you miss your sister. >> i love her like a mom, you know. you just feel like a mama's love is supposed to be unconditional. and no matter what, i'm always going to look at her as my big sister. doesn't matter how old i am. up next, remembering the life and legacy of fashion icon/journalist andre leon talley. e leon e leon talley. huh. is that true? geico's been saving folks money for 85 years? yeah, that's right. wait — so if geico's 85, that makes you — are you asking if i'm 85 years old? i mean sea turtles live to 150,
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♪ finally tonight, the world has lost a stylish giant. remembering fashion icon andre leon talley, "vogue's" first black male creative director. tributes for the beloved fashion journalist pouring in. beverly johnson, the first black model to appear on the cover of
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american "vogue" sharing her memories tonight. >> andre was absolutely brilliant. i think that there is no one on the planet that knows more about fashion than andre. >> the 73-year-old was a towering figure, not just in stature at 6'6", but in the fashion industry where there were so few people of color when he first began his career. andre was never one to shy away from a statement piece. in the film "the september issue," his wit and charisma on full display. >> it's been an assignment of beauty. my eyes are starving for beauty. >> his love for fashion began when he was a child. he describes growing up in north carolina in the documentary "the gospel according to andre." >> i was walking around in normal -- like a sweater, a ski sweater or something. and i thought it just was a bunch of white boys at duke decided to throw rocks at me because i was walking the campus.
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but i was taught to rise above it and to be strong. i went to an all-black high school. >> "vogue" editor-in-chief anna wintour saying talley inspired generations of designers, calling him magnificent and erudite and wickedly funny. he had a style all his own and was often ready with an answer when asked how to succeed. the answer, do your homework. what a legacy. that's "nightline." you can watch all our full episodes on hulu. we'll see you right back here same time tomorrow. thanks for staying up with us. good night, america.


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