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tv   Early Today  NBC  August 29, 2013 4:00am-4:31am PDT

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good thursday morning. coming up on "early today," is the aye u.s. military strike on syria imminent? we're live in the region. four major illnesses tied to a lack of sleep. the results of a five-year sleep study. send a text to a driver and you could be held legally responsible if there's a car accident. plus, fast food workers across the country prepare to strike. taking in the dream 50 years later. and a billion-dollar classified payload heads to space. and an albino alligator gets acupuncture for back pain. "early today" starts right now. >> announcer: this is "early today" for thursday, august 29th. very good morning. i'm richard lui. thousands of syrians are trying
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to flee the country in advance of a potential u.s.-led military strike. refugee sites are springing up across lebanon and the entire mideast is on age. there's a run on gas masks. israelis young and old are lining up at distribution centers thinking they may be syria's next target. this morning, president obama is confirming the use of chemical weapons by the assad regime. >> we have concluded that the syrian government in fact, there is a prospect, a possibility in which chemical weapons that can have devastating effects could be directed at us. and we want to make sure that that does not happen. >> ayman moyheldin joins us from the region in beirut. good day to you. as we look at the refugee crisis, what's the status? >> well, it's certainly one that
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is getting worse by the day. and a lot of it is driven by the anxiety of people across the region. you start here in beirut, for example, and the past 36 hours, on wednesday and early on all day tuesday, the total number of refugees that have crossed in from syria into lebanon has reached 10,000 people. 10,000 syrians. on an average day throughout this conflict, they were seeing 500 to 1,000 a day. ever since there was a talk about the possibility of a u.s. military strike, the number has spiked. and they expect that number to stay at that level for the time being. it reflects the feeling in syria itself. shops are open but we understand from people inside damascus, food prices are skyrocketing. fuel is also skyrocketing. short supplies. so it's a very tense situation not only in lebanon but also in israel as well as jordan where refugees continue to pour across that border as well in anticipation any of strike. >> richard, 2:00 in the
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afternoon, ayman moyhedlin for us. gerges joins us. the president's decision is not only about syria. it's also about israel and iran as you know so well. is there any way to dance around this complexity? >> i don't think so, richard. you cannot dance around the complexity of israel and iran. let me be blunt. this is pie proxy. it's not about the opposition and the regime. iran is in the thick of it. iran used syria as a pivotal number. the resistance axis. in fact, iranian assets, hezbollah are deeply involved in the syrian conflict, and there's a major risk of miscalculation. the iranian leader, the supreme leader khomeini warned yesterday that any attack on syria could basically be disastrous and, in fact, i would argue there's a
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real potential for escalation for a regionwide conflict. in particular, the attack on syria is basically provides a context for regional powers to get more involved. >> fawaz, that's the concern there. there's also the complexity in the united states economically as we look at the dow as well as oil prices. >> well, absolutely. already as you know, richard, oil prices are up. there's a great deal of anxiety. the market is very anxious. but imagine, as you said, imagine if this particular conflict intensifies and escalates. imagine if iran becomes nuclear involved and saudi arabia and the strait of hormuz. this would have severe impact on the world economy, particularly the american economy. a much more concern about a regionwide conflict whereby israel and iran and hezbollah and saudi arabia become deeply involved in this unfolding drama before our eyes. >> just some of the indications of the complexities that the
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president as well as its collaborative partners are considering right now. fawaz gerges, thank you for your perspective. california firefighters are adding a drone in the fight against an unrelenting firefighter. the drone, similar to the one you're seeing here, gives firefighters a bird's-eye view. it's remotely piloted hundreds of miles away by the california national guard. on wednesday it alerted firefighters of a new flare up they would not have normally seen so quickly. the rim fire is now in its 13th day and it s only 30% contained. it has destroyed 111 structures posing a threat to the yosemite national forest, san francisco's water supply as well and its giant sequoia trees in the region. millions of americans suffer from sleeplessness. a new government study shows that 9 million adults take prescription sleeping pills. the national center for health statistics conducted a five-year study that found lack of sleep also contributes to diabetes,
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heart disease, obesity, depression and other diseases. researchers noted 50 to 70 million americans suffer from sleep deprivation or sleep disorders. remembering the march on washington and dr. martin luther king jr.'s i have a dream speech. in their own words 50 years later. >> because they march, city councils changed and state legislatures changed and congress changed and, yes, eventually the white house changed. >> 50 years ago, our parents and grandparents marched for jobs and freedom. we have suffered and sacrificed too much to let their dream become a memory. >> we've got to keep on fighting and we've got to vindicate and stand up and substantiate that the dream was not to one generation. the dream goes on until the dream is achieved.
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>> so as the bells of freedom ring today, we are hoping that it's a time for all of us to reflect on not only the progress that has been made, and we've made a lot, but on what we have accomplished and also on the work that still remains before us. >> what an amazing day it was. to the u.s. open and a dramatic exit for venus williams. the two-time champ finding herself at a tiebreaker against china's zv heng jie. she's out of the u.s. open. jie wins the three-hour battle. it was the longest women's match so far in the tournament and tied for the fifth longest since 1970. johnny football getting benched but not for long. johnny man zeal will sit out the first half of texas a&m's season opener this saturday. the ncaa and the school saying there was no evidence the 20-year-old quarterback was paid to sign autographs but, quote,
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said this. ncaa rules are clear that student athletes may not accept money for items they sign, and based on information provided by man zeal, that did not happen in this case. nevertheless, the punishment caught the attention of late night comics. >> he's being punished for 30 whole minutes. well, if that doesn't send a message, nothing will. >> jay, jay, getting in on that. >> it's true, though. 30 minutes. >> so a little bit of heat, man zeal did. also heat to talk about. >> yes, and a lot of heat. it's continuing in areas that have been seeing a lot of heat. mostly through the midwest where it's going to remain up around 100 degrees today when you factor in the humidity. out west, though, things are mostly quiet. we still could really use some help from mother nature for the firefight out near yosemite but it does look like it's going to stay dry with dew points and humidity levels very low. we have rain continuing in the
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pacific northwest. off and on light to moderate showers continue throughout the day. we could end up with an inch or two. also down near phoenix with moisture coming in from the south, we could end up with scattered showers and storms producing up to a couple of inches out that way. we are looking for temperatures to stay in the mid-90s in las vegas. 97 degrees. but seattle saw that rain about 73. portland, oregon, about 75 with a couple showers and lots of ar around 94. >> so the desert southwest will continue with some of that rain. and again, some areas could end up with several inches of rainfall in the next 48 hours. >> dylan dreyer, forgot to say good morning to you. >> and you look very summery. >> we're getting to the end of august. i'm trying.
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>> about to say good-bye. we don't want to there go. a montana judge apologizes for what he said about a rape victim. plus, the battle over minimum wages from fast food workers to strippers. you're watching "early today."
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stories making news this morning for you -- former army major nidal hasan was sentenced to death for killing 13 people in 2009 ft. hood shooting rampage. the jury deliberated for two hours before coming back with the maximum penalty. a montana judge apologized for saying a 14-year-old rape victim was as much in control of the situation as her rapist. the teen committed suicide a few years after the rape. the judge now says his comments were demeaning to all women but stands by the 30-day sentence he gave the rapist. the victim's mother still in disbelief. >> i was horrified. i don't believe in justice
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anymore. it was a joke. a protest outside of the courthouse is scheduled for later today. multiple tractor trailers and cars were involved in a fiery crash in western ohio late last night. flames erupted on sbatinterstat. two people died in that wreck. an albino alligator with scoliosis gets the spa treatment with acpuncture to relieve the pain. bino, the gator, has shown improvement since beginning that therapy. you start thinking twice about sending a simple text. you might start doing that. a state appeals court in new jersey has ruled people who send a text message to someone they know is driving could be held liable in text-related accidents. now for business and cnbc's jackie deangeles. good morning. >> good morning, richard. thousand of fast food workers are expected to stage their largest strike today in the campaign for higher wages. workers have pledged to walk off
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the job in about 50 cities demanding the federal minimum wage be doubled to $15 an hour. and they also want the right to unionize. ford will start making the fusion sedan in the u.s. for the first time at a plant near detroit. ford hired 1400 new workers for the plant which will produce 350,000 vehicles per year, 30% more than at its factory in mexico. and finally, nintendo cutting the price on the wii-u game console to compete better with the new xbox 1 and playstation 4. nintendo is launching a new lower priced hand-held device. the 2d is in time for holidays. speaking of minimum wage, four strippers have filed a class action lawsuit in colorado federal court. they claim their employer fantasy gentleman's club in grand junction had violated federal and state minimum wage laws. a 23-story tall delta 4 heavy rocket was launched on wednesday from california's vandenberg air force base.
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the classified payload is expected to be a billion-dollar spy satellite. starbucks is selling a swarovski encrusted mug. and a popular television commercial selling insurance was the inspiration behind this in florida for this business. they actually brought no man the camel to work. the occasion? hump day! well, we know that was yesterday, wednesday. today is thursday. but it happened yesterday. straight ahead, a shocking new report suggests aaron hernandez was using angel dust. plus all your sports highlights, next.
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now let's get the latest in sports for you. they finished just short of midnight. defending champ andy murray biting at the bit after a four-hour rain delay to britain's almost flawless against michael yodra. straight sets for murray. rolling stone magazine out with a comprehensive write-up on aaron hernandez citing unnamed sources. it says he used angel dust. he was convinced also that his life was in danger and carried a gun wherever he went. no comment from the patriots yet. and good samaritan to detroit -- or rather, add the title good samaritan to detroit tigers justin verlander's
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titles. the world class pitcher launched a charity for veterans with $1 million of his own cash. the wins and warriors initiative will support mental health and emotional well-being of veterans of iraq and afghanistan wars. in derek jeter's stellar save may have stopped this run. but the yankees' otherwise sloppy play hurt. they lost to last place toronto, 7-2. with 29 games left, the playoffs getting tougher now for new york. wait. football jersey, helmet, during baseball practice? tampa bay's david price was spirit for his alma mater vanderbilt. vandy opens tonight. we're talking about college football. it's back. the rays beat the angels, by the way, 4-0. not sure what to have your favorite athlete autograph here? well, how about your baby? ian desmond of the washington nationals autographed one fan's baby. somehow i think that one will be washed at some point. maybe it was on the pants.
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class is definitely back in session. but can you crank it like a chainsaw? can i speak? the viral dance move by the oregon state cheerleaders is trying to crank up the spirit. they want fans to perform the dance at home games. the move seemed to be pretty straight forward. just ahead, george clooney and sandra bullock together in italy. just what the heck is going on here. you're watching "early today."
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good morning. welcome back. a damp day expected in the pacific northwest. 67 right now in seattle. portland only at 66. and it's not going to warm up all that much more as we go into the afternoon because it is going to be fairly rainy with off and on showers. even some isolated thunderstorms. in the southwest, though, phoenix could end up with heavier pockets of rain as well. same goes for tomorrow with scattered showers and storms even in las vegas with highs well into the 90s. >> boise looks pretty good. >> of all the places, boise looks good. in entertainment news, a couple a-listers decided to hail a taxi on the way to their film premier. george clooney and sandra bullock arrived in water taxis for the world premiere of gravity. their action thriller kicked off the venice film festival which is the world's oldest event of its kind. a full house at john stamos' 50th birthday bash. transformed into a '90s sitcom reunion as the olsen twins and
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bob saget showed up. a short film case, a ballerina who is really on point. the dancer pulls off classic ballet moves in point shoes attached to sharp kitchen knives. wow. and the internet has been buzzing with laughter since the release of this matchup. features a classic scene from "breaking bad" and the miley cyrus/robin thicke mtv awards show performance. from the looks of it, even the viewers in tv land were just as horrified as most of the country. >> i think their face sums up how everyone else was feeling when they watched that. >> yeah. look. how many days later? we're still talking about it. >> she did something right. she's in the news. >> i'm richard lui. this is "early today." we hope it's just your first stop of the day on nbc.
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leading the headlines in this morning's "new york times" -- gun bill in missouri would test limits in nullifying u.s. law. next month the republican-controlled legislature could enact a statute nullifying all federal gun laws in the state and making it a crime for federal agents to enforce them here. and in "the wall street journal," researchers grow human mini brains. scientists use stem cells to help model human brain. the advance is expected to allow researchers to investigate human brain disease in a lab. mini brains. all right. also in our news today, the woman at the stlef alleged naval academy sexual assault breaks her silence. she testifies she did not remember being sexually assaulted after she passed out drunk at a party but she said one of the men told her the next day she had sex with him and another accused man. she also said she saw lewd
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comments on twitter. hearings resume today to decide if the three accused men will face court-martial. george zimmerman's wife pleads guilty to perjury for misleading a court about her family's finances during a bail hearing. she was sentenced to a year's probation and 100 hours community service. president obama defends the justice department's lawsuit over texas' voter i.d. law. >> if we can go ahead and move administratively so that our attorney general can go ahead in jurisdictions that seem to be intent on preventing people from voting, and that have a racial element to it, even though largely it's probably for partisan reasons, then we need to go ahead and enforce the law. time for a look ahead and a look back. students return to school in west, texas, today. a massive explosion at a fertilizer plant in april damaged the town's homes and schools and killed 15 people. on this day in 2005, hurricane katrina devastated the
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city of new orleans causing severe damage along the gulf coast from florida to texas. happy birthday to actress lea michele of "glee" who is 27. elliott gould turns 75 and arizona senator john mccain is 77. here's what's coming up later on the "today" show. matt lauer tuks former heavyweight boxing champ mike tyson about his battle with drug and alcohol addiction. >> when i start drinking and relapse, i think of dying. normally i'm in a real dark mood, i think of dying. i don't want to be around it no more. sometimes i don't want to live when i'm in that state. >> keep it right here for more news, weather and sports. i'm richard lu i along with dylan dreyer. thanks for watching "early today." have a great thursday.
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this bridge is closed, and in just a few days the newbridge will be open. >> a live look at the bay bridge toll plaza. it's packed but not with the kind of traffic you'd expect to see. construction crews working around the clock to get the new eastern span ready. good morning to you. 4:30. i'm laura garcia-cannon. >> good morning. i'm marla tellez in for jon kelley. let's give you another look at the bay bridge toll plaza. crews are creating a new roadway between the toll plaza and the eastern span of the bay bridge. we'll get an update on how the work is going at 6:00 a.m. meantime, mike inouye is watching your kroeds. christie smith is at the macarthur b.a.r.t. station where riders are bracing for packed train cars this morning. good mog,


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