Skip to main content

tv   NBC Nightly News With Lester Holt  NBC  January 4, 2020 2:07am-2:36am PST

2:07 am
barricaded inside. police and s.w.a.t. teams swarming the scene. the deadly wildfire disaster spreading in australia. hundreds of evacuees trapped on a beach rescued. we're in the fire zone. the deadly rampage. a man stabbing apparently at random the suspect climbing to a roof and the shocking thing that happened next. inside the daring escape the former auto company chief fleeing charges. tonight the bombshell new report on how he was smuggled to freedom. and the massive line of rain stretching 1,500 miles from the gulf coast to new england. al roker with the latest track >> announcer: this is "nbc nightly news" with lester holt good evening nearly 3,000 additional american troops have been ordered to the middle ea its top general by american edorces violence against americans overseas he was killed in an ambush at baghdad's airport.
2:08 am
this evening the state department telling americans to leave iraq for their own safety richard engel is there and has the latest. >> reporter: the aftermath shows an attack that was deliberate and sustained with around a half dozen explosions, the americans firing with drones iran's general, qasem soleimani. he had reportedly just gotten into iraq from beirut and was leaving baghdad airport when he was killed in a convoy of vehicles along with a top iraqi militia leader president trump tonight. >> soleimani was plotting imminent and sinister attacks on american diplomats and military personnel, but we caught him in the act and terminated him. >> reporter: the imminent attacks planned by soleimani targeted u.s. diplomats, u.s. military personnel, house americans in iraq, syria, lebanon, and the region of the middle east. a sr. state department
2:09 am
official told reporters today. qasem soleimani was no ordinary general the u.s. officially classified him as a terrorist, but in iran he was a national hero specifically, soleimani was in charge of spreading iranian influence around the world and he was extremely good at it. smart, charismatic, ruthless, strategic and bold soleimani knit together a loyal network of armed groups from iraq to syria, lebanon to afghanistan. any time iran attacked oil tankers in the persian gulls and denied it, or attacked oil facilities in saudi arabia and denied that, too u.s. officials saw soleimani's handiwork. his power made iranians proud today iranians in the thousands came out to show their love and their anger. soleimani was arguably iran's mose shadows and he spilled he was the secret architect of a long campaign against u.s.
2:10 am
troops in iraq after the 2003 invasion, killing hundreds back then his face was barely known, but over the last few years soleimani has gotten bolder, showing photographs of himself on battlefields around the middle east, issuing statements his pride and increasing profile may have made him easier to track down and kill there was talk in iran soleimani might be a future president or perhaps even a supreme leader today the man who has that role, iran's top ayatollah, visited soleimani's family and promised severe revenge. the most immediate co idad where shiite militia leaders loyal to soleimani the same militias that for days attacked the u.s. embassy will take to the streets tomorrow is hearing d show late word of another airstrike. richard, what do we
2:11 am
know >> reporter: an iraqi security official told us another convoy has been targeted by an american airstrike this convoy carrying leaders from the iraqi she a militias, those same militias who are going to protest tomorrow, angry protests in baghdad, not far from the u.s. embassy. so in could escalate, it could lead to a cycle of violence. it just got more dangerous tonight. >> thank you. and in his remarks president trump declared that soleimani's reign of terror is over and said the u.s. operation that killed him should have been done long ago. hallie jackson has more on the president's response acon from congress. >> reporter: president trump tonight defending his order to target qasem soleimani. >> soleimani made the deaths of innocent people his sick passion. we took action last night to we did not take action to start a war >> reporter: and while the president says the u.s. does not want
2:12 am
regime change, he is ready to retaliate if iran seeks revenge. >> if americans anywhere are threatened, we have all of those targets already fully identified and i am ready and prepared to take whatever action is necessary. >> reporter: now new fallout here at home. >> this is the equivalent of the iranians asass mating the u.s. secretary of defers. >> >> reporter: democrats demanding details about the strike slammed by some as reckless whe reckless with the concern the president is overstepping his authority. is that a justification enough in your view for this strike to have been carried out? >> well, hallie, i want to see what is the intelligence behind that. >> reporter: house speaker nancy pelosi pointing out the president dissnal leaders in advance, even though one of the president's gop allies not a heads up of his own. >> i was briefed about the potential operation when i was down in florida.
2:13 am
i appreciate being brought into the orbit. >> reporter: the president's party largely united in praising the strike, arguing the world is less dangerous now after the death of the leader of an organization branded terrorists by the administration. >> this terrorist leadership has been ended. >> the president took decisive action, he took the right action and, candidly, it's one that will save american lives >> reporter: and late tonight here in south florida the president said he believes that soleimani had been planning what he described as a very major attack i'm told by sources close to the president he is confident in his decision to carry out this strike and in his authority to do so lester. >> hallie jackson, thank you. and as iran vows revenge for soleimani's killing, americans are on heightened alert both overseas and here at home the attack and the threats having a far reaching ripple effect. >> reporter: protests in pakistan as crowds burn mock u.s.
2:14 am
coffins. celebrations in syria as president assad's critics express joy over their enemy's death. an exodus of american oil workers from basra in northern iraq, obeying an emergency order from the state department to get out now. extreme caution in israel which deployed tanks to the golan heights bordering syria while u.n. peacekeepers beefed up patrols between israel and lebanon. 3,500 more u.s. troops are being ordered to the region from ft. bragg. the rest of the global response continuing the build-up in kuwait and potentially baghdad. around the world u.s. embassies are on high alert. starting to baghdad following the siege that helped trigger the targeted killing of the iranian commander. in new york, police are on heightened vigilance at what they call sensitive areas and critical structures. >> we are now potentially facing a threat that's different and greater than anything we have faced previously.
2:15 am
>> reporter: there is increased protection in washington at fee foreign posts. iran vowing revenge, where and when would they retaliate >> it will be to ga huge kpapsty to absorb punishment there were one million dead during the rwar. >> reporter: a bigger spike expected with in and when tehran retaliation. retaliation is a certainty they say. >> i am not in a position to tell you what sort of action we will follow, but what i can tell you is that there will be retaliation against the killing. >> reporter: the ambassador says that the trump administration sent a letter to iran last night and iran has ded t neither side will provide details about those letters. the administration says the assassination was legal because it
2:16 am
was defensive. if so, was it the right strategy critics say former pres opportunities ildid not fearing it would lead to war with iran lester. >> andrea mitchell, thank you. tensions wthered several dangerous flare-ups since last spring, including major provocations in and near the strait of hormuz i visited tehran in august amid the tensions and got some insight on how iran might approach conflict with the u.s. >> reporter: in tehran today the american flag burned in the streets. angry reaction to the american assassination of iran's top military commander. iran's national security council tonight issuing new threats, saying a very grave revenge is awaiting the criminals who bloodied their hands with the blood of soleimani months ago we traveled n to peoe reetnd in their homes and to
2:17 am
government officials, including the head ol security council a visit during another moment of inflamed tensions following suspected iranian attacks on oil tankers and iran's shootdown of an american military drone back then he shared with me this warning >> translator: in the case of war, the u.s. will be in a very terrible situation. >> reporter: will iran use asymmetric warfare? >> translator: iran has multiple instruments at hand, including the proxy war. >> reporter: a reference to iranian-backed groups from militias across the region to terror organizations like hamas and hezbollah. potentially raising the stakes for american military planners military to military, how would you expect the iranians would fare against the u.s.? >> badly they cannot match us in conventional forces, but they are masters of asymmetric warfare. the iranians may turn of activity ttempt the
2:18 am
against the u.s. ambassador and then they would say this was a proportional operation. >> reporter: tonight no public indication inside iran of what they'll do next. nbc's ali arouzi is there. >> soleimani was a cult figure. there is a real sense of shock here. state tv is commemorating him on a loop one jeanine wept after the news of his death. >> reporter: meantime, last night's brazen u.s. airstrike may represent a miscalculation on iran's part. in a series of interviews during our time on the ground this summer, top officials questioned the trump administration's the history of america's past behavior shows they cannot so simply make such mistakes. >> reporter: a country that just weekwas embroiled in bloody unrest. a deadly government crackdown to end protests over soaring gas prices tonight refocusing
2:19 am
their rage on america. another possible response by iran could be a cyberattack against the u.s. >> a lot of other news breaking right now, including a hostage standoff at bank in illinois ron mott isin chicago. ron, what do we know >> reporter: this started around 2:30 this afternoon local time officials got a call from the heritage korean in rockford, illinois, about a man armed with a gun who demanded people leave the business, but not everyone was able to get out. it's unclear on the number of hostages at least one person is confirmed inside authorities warn there may be multiple s the negotiators are on scene. local police, s.w.a.t., fbi. so far no reports of gunfire or any injuries there are numerous road closures around this bank as officials try tonight to bring this incident to a peaceful ending. no word on the identity of the suspect. >> a frighteningthere. ron mott, thank you. those devastating wildfires in australia are getting worse tonight and at least
2:20 am
19 people are now reported dead. janis mackey frayer is in the fire zone >> reporter: tonight inside the massive fire zone fears are growing. officials warning flames are fast moving and conditions are getting worse. >> this part of the fire came through. >> reporter: we made it to this nature reserve, now charred, smoldering, and at risk of igniting again. are you nervous? >> yeah. at the moment, it's a case of everyone's nervous. getting prepared for tomorrow. >> reporter: days ago that same wind and heat causing chaos, and catching many by and withi minutes were surrounded by fire. >> by the e got around the corner the valley was on fire, which is houses gone, people were jumping into the water to save their own lives, and because there was no going back out. >> reporter: they retreated to the beach, waiting days to escape by road their seaside town devastated
2:21 am
australia's navy today rescuing hundreds of people stuck at the shore. the wind is picking up just a little bit and really feeding those flames thermal photography of the fires an ominous picture of the threat. still there are people who defied warnings to leave, but have few supplies and no guarantee of help. the fire zone are e feeling the impacts. the entire coast is choked with this thick smoke making it difficult to breathe, and the temperature is set to hit 107 degrees today. lester. >> so badly need a break. thank you. back home, a deadly stabbing attack in austin, texas police say the suspect got into an altercation at a coffee shop then fled to a nearby restaurant inside he allegedly stabbed two people, apparently at random, killing one of them. the suspect then climbed to a roof and jumped and was hospitalized with injuries. just ahead as we continue tonight, the dramatic escape, how a
2:22 am
former top auto executive charged with financial wrongdoing got away with the help of a big box and a private jet. also, rain and snow affecting weekend plans for millions al roker has that. and why the group leading one firehouse is so unique you'll meet them in tonight's athleti"those who serve.
2:23 am
2:24 am
all right. next up for us tonight, inside that daring escape by a former top auto he can executive facing charges in japan new tdetails on what he may have hidden inside to sneak out of that country aboard a private plane. here is tom costello. >> reporter: it has all the suspense of a hollywood thriller former renowned nissan ceo carlos ghosn holed up in beirut, saying in a statement i have not fled justice, i have escaped injustice, and political persecution. gh charged in 2018 with house arrest in tokyo for months after being financial crimes. >> carlos ghosn. finaial misconduct. >> reporter: international media have speculated about how he escaped tonight the "wall street journal," citing a source familiar with a
2:25 am
turkish investigation, report two american security contractors hid ghosn in a large black box, then loaded it into a private plane. >> it was a large black instrument box, musical instrument box, jammed into the back aisle of the airplane and the box had holes drilled to the bottom for mr. -- for somebody, presumably mr. ghosn, to breathe. >> reporter: mmg says it filed a criminal complaint concerning the illegal us of their charter services in relation to carlos ghosn's escape from japan saying an employee acted alone and falsified records. this flightaware track shows the plane leaving osaka japan 11:00 p.m. sunday, flying through russian airspace and on it turkey a second plane flew to lebanon which has no extradition eay departure. my family had no role whatsoever, promising to tell his story to reporters next week.stel, nb
2:26 am
news, washington. >> it's an amazing tale. up next, a big weekend storm and al roker is here.
2:27 am
2:28 am
2:29 am
tonight we're tracking a 1,500-mile line of rain from the gulf coast to new england. al roker is with us. al, what are you watching >> right now we are watching this heavy rain making its way from the gulf coast and heavier activity into the mid-atlantic states as it pushes to the east with snow developing behind it so for tonight strong storms for the gulf coast. that rain will move into the mid-atlantic overnight. tomorrow periods of rain into the northeast with accumulating snow in new england. by sunday it's off the coast. heavier accumulations along the southeast with snow stretching from western new york all the way into new england. airport delays tomorrow from cleveland down to raleigs h an, le, how these firefighters are breaking new ground for those who serve.
2:30 am
2:31 am
2:32 am
2:33 am
finally, our visit to a remarkable firehouse in georgia here's blayne alexander with tho"those who serve." >> reporter: at firehouse 1 in decatur, georgia, you may notice something different. >> the fire alarm room. >> reporter: in a field comenated by n,ington, vera morrison and annetta violante lead the only fire department if the country where the top three positions are held by women. >> i often get questions about three women working together. >> reporter: for years they worked separately, each the only woman in their representativefirehouse. on the line night after night. a tall order when even your clothes are working against you. >> i was often in hand me down clothes or hand me down gear like for a 5'10" male. >> reporter: so you were doing all this in gear made for men? >> yes. >> that gear adds about 45 to 55 pounds to your body weight. >> reporter: even heavier, the weight of
2:34 am
being first. >> we represent every female firefighter that's out there. >> reporter: and theirs it not your typical fire station fully equipped with a relaxation pod, yoga classes, and a sense of camaraderie they say sets it apart. and the community is taking notice. just take a recent career day visit. >> auto chief morrison said can females be firefighters the one little girl raised her hand and said, no, but they can important is for them to just see that anything is possible, and as long as i'm here we will continue to shatter the glass ceiling. >> reporter: paving the way for generations to come. blayne alexander, nbc news, decatur, georgia. >> here's every one of them. that all of these on my fa
2:35 am
you the story where i have been and how i got to where i am but these stories don't mean anything when you've got no one to tell them to, it's true, i was made for you ♪ i climbed across the
2:36 am
mountaintops across the ocean blue 'cause even when i was you made me feel like a million bucks yeah, i was made for you [applause] >> kelly: all right, all right. [applause]
2:37 am
>> kelly: welcome to "the kelly clarkson show," y'all. i absolutely not only adore that song. i adore randy carlisle. she's not just a phenomenal singer. she's an amazing song writer. i have a lot in common with tha?


info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on