tv CBS Evening News With Norah O Donnell CBS January 14, 2020 3:12am-3:42am PST
changes his story for why he launched that deadly drone strike on iran's top general. independence day, the queen calls a family meeting after harry and meghan say they want out of their royal duties. tonight the rare statement from the queen herself and the deadline she just gave her grandson. turning deadly, why is the flu killing more children this year? what parents need to know about this season's deadly strain of the virus. they're out. major league baseball hands out a stunning punishment after accusations the houston astros cheated during their championship season. tonight the growing scandal. and wild card, how a seven-year- old forced the national hockey league to reshuffle its deck. this is the "cbs evening news" with norah o'donnell, reporting from the nation's capital. >> o'donnell: good evening, and thank you so much for joining us. tonight the justice department is kicking 21 saudi military
cadets out of the country this after the f.b.i. found they were posting jihadist and anti-american material online or looking at child pornography. now, saudi arabia's a key ally, and the saudis were here for aviation training on military bases, but the f.b.i. says it only found out what the saudis were doing while investigating last month's shooting at a florida air base. a saudi pilot killed three sailors and injured eight others at the pensacola naval air station. tonight the attorney general is calling the shooting an act of terror. he's asking apple to help the f.b.i. unlock the killer's iphone. catherine herridge leads us off tonighth t new d. >> this was an act of terrorism. >> reporter: attorney general william barr said today mohammed saeed alshamrani was motivated by jihadist ideology. >> the shooter posted a message on september 11th of this year stating, "the countdown has begun." >> reporter: the f.b.i. investigation indicates that the
shooter acted alone, however, 21 saudi nationals who trained at u.s. bases are being kicked out of the country. their social media accounts turned up postings with jihadist material and child pornography. >> reporter: the f.b.i. also provided harrowing details of the attack. the december 6th shooting at the pensacola air station lasted 15 minutes. with 180 rounds of ammunition, the saudi gunman killed three american sailors and wounded eight other people before police killed him. two weeks before, the aviation student had visited new york city's 9/11 memorial. >> the shooter fired shots at pictures of the current u.s. president and a former u.s. president, and a witness at the scene recounted that he made statements critical of american military actions overseas. >> reporter: two iphones were recovered at the scene, one in the gunman's car and one near his body that he had deliberately put a bullet through.
the f.b.i. is now asking apple for help unlocking the phones. >> it is very important for us tewas communicatingnd about what before he died. >> o'donnell: and catharine joins us tonight. how could these men who had posted jihadist anti-american materials make it into america in the first place? >> there are 800 saudi nationals here, but the 21 expelled show the vetting process was not comprehensive enough. the pentagon is fixing that. from now on, investigators are doing a deeper dive on applicants that include their social media. >> o'donnell: all right, catharine, thank you. a tornado ripped through loris, south carolina, today, sending cars flying through a high school parking lot. luckily nobody was hurt. it was part of the same system that unleashed 40 tornadoes and killed at least a dozen people across the south and central u.s. in recent days. here's omar villafranca. >> reporter: cars were tossed around in a school parking lot when a surprise tornado touched
down in loris, south carolina. students were in class, but no one was hurt. the unexpected twister dropped and lifted so quickly, meteorologists didn't have time to warn residents. in northwest louisiana, an ef-2 tornado with 135mph winds tore through the town of haughton. >> that is a monster. >> reporter: a giant tree sliced through 84-year-old james keen's house and landed a few feet from his bed. a middle of the night phone alert most likely saved his life. >> i was in that bed and got up to get the phone and got right here when it hit. i thought the whole house was coming down. >> reporter: just a few blocks away, the only thing left of this home is a pile of rubble. jerry and mary sue franks were killed when the tornado pulverized their house and pushed it almost 200 feet off its foundation. and today, new drone footage of north central high school in
kershaw, south carolina, shows the power of the storm system. >> fortunately no one was here on campus. all the damage is physical. it's buildings. it's buses. it can be replaced. >> reporter: the tornado here in louisiana left a path of destruction almost 25 miles long. as for the people who are still cleaning up like mr. keen, who lives here, there is more rain in the forecast. norah? >> o'donnell: all right, omar, thank you. 11 days after president trump launched that attack that killed iran's top general, the administration is defending the rationale for his targeted killing. today mr. trump says it doesn't really matter why he did it because of general soleimani's horrible past. major garrett reports tonight from the white house. >> mr. president. >> reporter: amid questions about the intelligence used to justify the strike on iranian general qassem soleimani, the president chastised democrats. >> we killed him, and when the democrats try and defend him, it's a disgrace to our country. they can't do that.
>> reporter: mr. trump also retweeted this incendiary and photoshopped depiction of top democratic leaders in front of an iranian flag, implying sympathy with the iranian regime. >> the president's foreign policy is dangerously incompetent. >> reporter: since the strike 11 days ago, the administration claimed an attack on u.s. assets was imminent, but today the president said it doesn't really matter. attorney general william barr added that the strike was legally justified. >> i don't think there is a requirement frankly for knowing the exact time and place of the next attack. >> reporter: late last week, the president said he did know where iran and its proxies would strike. >> i can reveal that i believe it would have been four embassies. >> reporter: but cbs news has learned that state department security was never warned of an imminent attack on u.s. embassies. and defense secretary mark esper, appearing on "face the nation," contradicted the president's assessment. >> i didn't see one with regard to four embassies. >> reporter: hours later, a
pentagon official said esper now agreed as many as four embassies in the region could have been targeted. >> well, first of all, i think it's been totally consistent. >> o'donnell: major joins us now from the white house. major, let's turn now to impeachment. we're hearing that trial in the senate could begin next tuesday. any sense of how long it could last? >> three to five weeks is what we're told, six days a week senators in their chairs, at their desks, no electronic devices, listen, never speaking, and the process, 24 hours for each side. the house managers prosecuting the case, 24 hours for the white house counsel's office to defend the president. then a period of time for questions from senators. then that all-important vote, whether to take more documents or more witnesses. >> o'donnell: and we will cover it all here at cbs, major. thank you. tonight for the first time we're seeing video from a u.s. military vehicle as iranian missiles rained down last week on a u.s. base in iraq. luckily no one was hurt. the missile barrage was in retaliation for the soleimani
killing. today holly williams spoke to some of the soldiers who were there. >> holy [bleeped]. >> reporter: there are around 1,500 u.s. coalition troops on al asad air base. they had just minutes to take cover. >> the shock waves just rolled even through these walls. >> reporter: sergeant daine kvasager told us he was flying a drone that night with orders to stay in his place and not take cover. he says he owes his life to these blast walls. >> i'm very grateful for this piece of concrete and wrought iron and steel. >> reporter: this is what iran's ballistic missiles did to metal. imagine what they could have done to u.s. troops if they hadn't taken cover. one of the missiles was a direct hit on chief warrant officer alexander bender's living quarters. that was the door, is that right, over there? >> yeah. that was the door. i had a bunk here. >> reporter: this fleece somehow survived, now scarred by shrapnel.iran
>>sure i >> rte t u.s.trunkebunker, bumot designed tthd recte hutogethernd one another.r:his is senior airman mary katherine mulholland's first-ever tour of duty. >> i still can't fathom that no one was hurt. >> reporter: there has been speculation that iran deliberately missed american troops to prevent further escalation. but a senior military official told us, that's not true. the iranians in his words were shooting to kill. >> o'donnell: and our military was prepared. holly, thank you. there was a tense meeting today between members of britain's royal family. when it was over, queen elizabeth gave prince harry and his wife meghan what they wanted, their independence, but she also set a deadline. charlie d'agata has what comes next. >> reporter: this afternoon's meeting reportedly lasted two and a half hours.
portsay harived early, meghan apparently dialed in, and at the end of the day, there was this unprecedented statement from the queen. "my family and i are entirely supportive of harry and meghan's desire to create a new life as a young family." but she went on to say, "although we would have preferred them to remain full- time working members of the royal family, we respect and understand their wish to live a more independent life as a family, while remaining a valued part of my family." under the deal, meghan and harry will live part-time in canada, during a period of transition. meghan's already there with son archie. one big question is whether prince charles will keep funding harry and meghan privately says royal correspondent roya nikah. >> ultimately, it is about a family, and, you know, that brotherly bond that was once so close is broken at the moment, and i think above all william is very sad about that. >> reporter: william expressed
his pain of not being able to put his arm around his little brother anymore, but today in a show of unity, they issued a joint statement denying that william's bullying caused the split. meanwhile, the queen says she wants this all resolved in a matter of days. norah? >> o'donnell: all right, let's see. charlie, thank you. we'll turn now to the 2020 presidential campaign. with 21 days before the iowa caucuses, there's a lot of news tonight. new jersey senator cory booker has dropped out of the presidential race, and there is a fight between the two leading progressives. ed o'keefe is in des moines. >> reporter: one day before a high-stakes debate in iowa, the long-standing truce between senator bernie sanders and elizabeth warren appears to be over. there are reports that during a private meeting late in 2018, he told her that a woman couldn't win the presidency. the warren campaign had no comment, but sanders called it ludicrous and blamed staff who weren't in the room lying about what happened. and it contradicts what he has said publicly for years.
>> in my view, a woman could be elected president of the united states. >> reporter: sanders is also denying his campaign told volunteers to say that warren only appeals to "more highly educated, more affluent people" and won't be able to expand the case of the democratic party. >> i was disappointed to hear that bernie is sending his volunteers out to trash me. >> reporter: with three weeks until the iowa caucus, warren has been slipping in the polls and sanders is rising. and now another candidate is out. new jersey senator cory booker says a lack of money and the upcoming impeachment trial factored into his decision. >> i can't wait to get back on the campaign trail and campaign as hard as i can for whoever is the eventual nominee. >> reporter: he's the latest to exit the largest and most diverse group of contenders ever, down from nearly 30 to a dozen. >> o'donnell: and ed joins us tonight from des moines. and to hear senator warren accuse senator sanders' supporters of trashing her, what's at the heart of this fight?
>> reporter: well norah, this is all about establishing dominance over the liberal wing of the democratic party. it could be a move by warren to recapture some of that support, but it could backfire, because over the past year, iowa democrats have told us consistently they would rather see the candidates focus on defeating president trump than themselves, so if this keeps up, it could benefit other candidates, like the guy who rents this space, joe biden. norah? >> o'donnell: all right, ed. thank you. tonight shock waves are rippling through major league baseball. the league hit the houston astros with harsh penalties today for illegally using technology to gain an edge, stealing secret pitching signals used by opposing teams. mark strassmann now on the hard and fast fallout. >> the houston astros are world champions! >> reporter: houston celebrated when the astros won the 2017 world series. not today. turns out the team had been cheating for months. they stole signs from a center field camera trained on the opposing team's catcher.
astros players studied a monitor and then warned their batters a certain pitch was coming inch this audio-enhanced clip, you're about the hear the signal for an off-speed pitch. two bangs on a trash can. major league baseball's investigation concluded that virtually all the players had some involvement or knowledge of the scheme. many admitted that they knew the scheme was wrong. astros general manager jeff luhnow and manager a.j. hinch were banned for a year and then fired by astro's owner jim crane. >> it's the stiffest penalty that any team has ever taken or given. >> reporter: m.l.b. isn't done. they're also investigating the boston red sox and manager alex cora, formerly the astro's bench coach. mark strassmann, cbs news, atlanta. >> o'donnell: all right. there's still much more news ahead on tonight's "cbs evening news." a serious warning about the flu. pediatric deaths are double what they were this time last year. what parents need to know.
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designed for you. >> o'donnell: there are urgent new calls tonight for parents to get their children vaccinated against the flu. dozens of children have died from the flu this season. dean reynolds has the story of a girl who survived the virus, but lost her version. >> reporter: it started with a low-grade fever, but by christmas eve, four-year-old jade delucia was unresponsive. amanda phillips is her mother. >> she was just laying in her bed not moving. her eyes were up in her head. she wouldn't wake up. >> reporter: jade had the flu, but even worse, a rare complicating infection was attacking her brain. she got a flu shot last march but not for the current season, which started this fall. dr. alex bassuk treated jade after she was medivaced to the university of iowa children's
hospital. >> the key point in this case is it has the happen every season. the vaccine is not a once-in-a- lifetime vaccine. it's not a once a year vaccine. it doesn't last a year. >> reporter: the onset of this flu season is the earliest since 2003 and it's hitting children particularly hard. already there have been a total of 32 pediatric deaths reported to the c.d.c., the highest number at this point in the season in five years. while jade steadily improved in the hospital and is now home, the infection has robbed her of her sight, at least for now. is this irreversible blindness for this child? >> it's hard to know at this point. there can be recovery, so we are still hopeful. >> reporter: her mother is just happy jade survived. >> she started talking a lot more. it's been awesome to see her personality coming back. >> reporter: dean reynolds, cbs news, iowa city, iowa. remind people to get vaccinated. up next, she plays hockey, but she plays hen.l.o nge.
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xeljanz for ra can increase risk of death. serious, sometimes fatal infections, cancers including lymphoma, and blood clots have happened. as have tears in the stomach or intestines, serious allergic reactions, and changes in lab results. tell your doctor if you've been somewhere fungal infections are common, or if you've had tb, hepatitis b or c, or are prone to infections. don't let another morning go by without asking your doctor about xeljanz xr. ♪ without asking your doctor abwith the capital one okay, i venture card,omething. you earn unlimited double miles on every purchase, every day. not just on airline purchases. holy matrimony! that's a lot of miles! anyone else? what's in your wallet? >> o'donnell: you've heard the saying, "it's not the hand
you're dealt, it's how you play the cards." well, tonight a young hockey player is proving that's true. here's nikki battiste. >> reporter: at age seven, sabrina scali is already a slick skater, but it's the move she's made off the ice that has scored big. it all started when her dad mike scali gave her this deck of nhl playing cards. >> a queen and a jack she hockey sticks, but queens have cheerleaders, which is not okay. >> reporter: it was a slight sabrina turned out to the national hockey league, write, "it's unfair none of the queens are hockey players." >> it wasn't she was asking them. she thought it was obvious these needed to be changed. >> reporter: it was a body check the nhl could hardly ignore, replying, "as a young girl, you represent everything we believe in and the power that sports brings us together, and promising sabrina she would
receive the first deck of its new playing cards with the queens now holding hockey sticks. when you found out the nhl changed their playing cards because of you, what did you i wasedhi. >>ow bigueiawhen comes to female empowerment. well, i say you're a hockey hero. >> yes. >> reporter: nikki battiste, cbs news, morristown, new jersey. >> o'donnell: sabrina, a queen with a real slapshot. we'll be right back.
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>> announc >> i'm errol barnett, and we'vea it w t years ago this weekend that a massive earthquake devastated the country. entire towns were destroyed, and more than a quarter million people were killed, making it the deadliest natural disaster ever recorded in the western hemisphere. well, in the aftermath, billions of dollars in foreign aid poured in. despite that, a decade later, little has changed. in fact, much of haiti is worse off than it was before the quake. jeff glor returned to the former disaster zone and found at least one bright spot in a sea of misery.
>> reporter: our trip began in the capital, port-au-prince. in the wake of haiti's worst year since the earthquake. mass protests, gang violence, rampant political corruption. jobs are scarce. but perhaps most tragically, basic medical care can be almost impossible to find. so this is the general hospital in port-au-prince, or at least it should be the hospital. after the earthquake decimated the old hospital, a new one was planned immediately after. more than 80 million has been spent on it. it sits empty today. in the meantime, the old general hospital, what should be the main source of care for haiti's biggest city reeks of raw sewage. piles of trash are everywhere. this woman and her 4-month-old son have been here for eight days. sorry, buddy, sorry.
>> he is crying because he's got to use the bathroom. >> reporter: he has to go and he can't? he can't go to the bathroom. sorry. i can't imagine the pain that he is in right now. >> reporter: many patients don't get treated because they're often required to provide the medical supplies. t hta can't simple as surgical afford. but take a trip outside the capital and you find a remarkable place that many doubted could ever exist in this country. this is st. boniface hospital in fond do blanc up the mountain on haiti's southern peninsula. it was started in 1983, and in the last ten years has become a leading hope. >> people come from hours away to the hospital. and it could be anything, emergency room, anything. >> reporter: conner shapiro is the president of health equity international, which oversees saint boniface. he first came here in 2003, and his wife is haitian.