tv BBC World News America PBS September 17, 2021 2:30pm-3:01pm PDT
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and by contributions to this pbs station from viewers like you. thank you. announcer: and now, "bbc world news". laura: i am lan new york city and this is "bbc world news america." the pentagon admits to mistakenly killing 10 afghan civilians in a drone strike last month, believing they were members of islamic state. machines of war in new hands. pilots from the old african air force have joined the taliban to fly the aircraft that once belonged to america. re in the u.s., another twist in the debate over booster shots. an fda advisory committee recommends pfizer booster shots, but only for those over 65. you must undiplomatic row. france recalls i ambassador to the u.s., protesting the american deal providing
australia with nuclear powered submarines. plus,he debt the collapse of the overpass in mexico city last may was partly caused by missing bolts, and investigation finds. the families of those killed say warning signs were missed. welcome to "world news america" on pbs and around the globe. the u.s. military says it mistakenly killed 10 afghan civilians in a drone strike in kabul last month, describing this as a horrible mistake seven of the dead were children. this is a major reversal of the pentagon's position. u.s. officials had said the strike was justified and righteous to because it stopped militants from using a car bomb to attack the airport. here good general mckenzie speaking this afternoon. >> this strike was done with the fullest believe it woul prevent an imminent threat to our forces
at the airport, but it was a mistake, and i offer my sincere apology. as the combatant commander, i am fully responsible for this strike in this tragic outcome. laura: bbc's afghanistan correspondent joins us now from kabul. the day after that drone strike, you were on the scene. you met the family of those who were killed. this must be a very difficult moment. now the pentagon says it was a horrible mistake. >> yeah, that's right. we were on the scene the morning after the strike and it was a terrible thing to see. family members combing through the wreckage, trying to find body parts. they were utterly distraught and furious with the idea that anything to do with isis. in fact, number of the people that were killed worked with american troops and american organizations in ahanistan. the family had been hoping to be
relocated as part of the evacuation scheme to the u.s. now we know it is confirmed that the intelligence was wrong of course. this is an incredibly grim end , largely bringing an end to american involvement in afghanistan. we know more about this strike because it took place in kabul. so many others in the past happened in more rural areas. much more difficult to get accurate information about them. it also i think is a reminder of how difficult these over the horizon counterterrorism strikes will be for u.s. officials to carry out in the future. they have said that will be their biggest weapon in targeting groups like al qaeda or isis in the future. laura: separately, the u.s. military has been saying the taliban cannot use american aircraft that were left behind. what have you been finding out? >> that's right.
we have seen large numbers of pilots from the afghan air force flee out of afghanistan. some of them taking aircraft with them into neighboring was becca stand for example. but a number of pilots and airmen stayed on in afghanistan after the taliban announced amnesty for those previously associated with the government. many have been skeptical, but we have been finding out many are returning to work. here is our report from a northern city. lifting off, the taliban's new air force. onboard, their fighters. in the cockpit, their former enemies, pilots from the previous government. the fleet now under the taliban's control includes fighter planes originally donated by america. dozens of pilots flood abroad as
the taliban took over in fear of their lives, taking their aircraft with them. these helicopters launched a lot of attacks against the taliban. that is right, isn't it? but as the group announced amnesty, others decided to stay on. you are both sitting here calmly, but do you recognize it is like a strange situation for two people who are trying to kill each other now to be working together? >> [speaking foreign language] >> [speaking foreign language]
>> elsewhere, the political transition is far less smooth. foreign reserves are frozen with the community weighing up afghans and the taliban. banks have restricted cash withdrawals. secondhand markets have sprung up across the country. the war might have come to an end, but this is where you see the utter desperation that so many afghans are living in -- utter desperation that so many afghans are living in. now they are trying to sell whatever household possessions they can just to put food on the table for their families. >> [speaking non-english language]
>> most public sector employees want to be paid their salaries, the last ones from the previous government. now they have no idea when or if they will be paid again. if you were still working, you did not get a salary? this teacher has already sold what she can. >> [speaking non-english language] >> across the road, the main hospital. in charge of health care, taliban officials working alongside employees of the former government. they no longer receive patients
injured in fighting, but staff here have not been paid since the taliban took over. existing supplies of medicine will last another month. >> this is an economic crisis. this is a health crisis that will happen once again here. >> the condition of power in afghanistan is much less bloody than many had feared, but half the country was already in dire need. the struggle to survive is becoming even harder. bbc news. laura: now, are rotavirus booster shots needed in the u.s.? the biden administration says they will be rolled out from next week. the advisory board from the fda say booster shots for the over 65's and vulnerable while the general population do not need boosters. in the u.k., the government will offer boosters to everyone over
50nd other vulnerable people as t winter approaches. germany, france, and the czech republic have announced similar plans for older people and those who are vulnerable. in israel, boosters are already being offered to those 12 and over. the world health organization says healthier nations should hold off on giving booster shots until vaccination rates go up around the world. here is the world health organization's director general. >> there are countries with less than 2% vaccination coverage. most of them in africa -- vaccination coverage. most of them in aica. not getting the first or second dose, and starting with boosters to healthy populations is reay not right. laura: for more on this debate over booster shots, we are joined now by the director of the chief of university global health innovation center. thank you so much for being with us. in a weeks time, the biden administration wants to roll out
booster shots, but the advisory committee of the fda is recommending boosters for the over 65's but not the general population over 16. it is a little confusing, isn't it? >> yeah. the good thing is there was a transparent debate over the day today by the fda that looked at all the american evidence funk and trials as well as from the real world, look at what was coming out of israel come out of the u.s., and i think came to a reasonable set of recommendations that balancing the risk and benefit that starting with boosters for those over 65 at high risk for severe disease and more than six months out from their primary immunization makes sense from a scientific perspective. i think it also gives us a more balanced approach to thinking about boosters in the context of global equity. exactly as the doctor pointed out, we still have enormous numbers of people around the world that are waiting for their first doses.
laura: but isn't it the case though that the jury is still out on whether or not booster shots are effective? >> it is a good question. the science is evolving. we have fairly good evidence from israel especially that boosters significantly ruce the risk of infections. the primary immunization seems to still offer very good protection against severe disease, hospitalizations, and deaths. the boosters seem to help even with those outcomes, especially in vulnerable and elderly populations. while the science continues to evolve, i think we know enough today that where supplies are available and the evidence continues to evolve, we can start with boosters in a limited way and continue to track the data. laura: here in the united states, where we are lucky enough to be awash with vaccines, does it make sense to
give boosters when there are people who are unvaccinated and they are the ones getting covid? >> yes, i think we have to try to increase the percentage of primary vaccinations here in the u.s. we are not anywhere near where we need to be, but this is one other measure that we can take, to offer boosters for vulnerable populations that can help protect them both from infections which they can then transmit so we can reduce the transmission raced through this booster campaign and we can make sure we are reducing the risk overall of filling up our hospitals all over again and seeing waves of deaths. but it is important for us to only do this in the context of also doing more for the rest of the world. laura: in your view, is the u.s. doing enough? the biden administration claims it is. >> the u.s. seems to be doing more than any other country so far, but unfortunately that is a really low bar.
we are hearing reports today that the president may announce next week at the global vaccine summit another purchase and donation of 500 million doses of vaccines in addition to the same number that was announced at the g7 meeting earlier this year. that is another good start, but what we need to also focus on is immediate access. while more than 45% of the population here in north america is fully vaccinated, more than 50% in europe, that number is less than 4% for the entire continent of africa. so we can talk about donating vaccines in 12 or 18 months, but that is not good enough. we need to be able to show, as the white house press secretary has said, if this truly is a false choice, you need to see th through actions in the coming weeks. laura: dr. krishna udayakumar , thank you for joining us. >> thank you. laura: the fallout from the u.s. plan to provide australia with nuclear parents of marines is
continuing. the submarines widely built by france. the french canceled a gala and now france is recalling its ambassadors to the united states and australia. joining us is bbc's north america editor jon sopel. this is extraordinary. what is your assessment of the french move? jon: it is head spinning and not only extraordinary. i think i am right in saying unprecedented. never in theistory of the u.s.-french relationship has france recalled its ambassador from washington. this is what you do with countries that you don't have close relations with. france has very close relationship historically with the united stes of america, and that shows the level of fury there is in paris over this decision. part of it is economic. france will lose $60 billion worth of sales to the australians in these submarines
as a result of this deal, but also the fact that this was all donebehind france's back and it was -- done behind france's back. i think the french are absolutely seething. one thing i would add to that is many moons ago i was the bbc paris correspondent, and it would be negligent not to point out that next spring there is a french presidential election. it is emmanuel macron who has ordered the withdrawal of his ambassadors from fans -- from the u.s. and cambra. maybe he is thinking standing up to america is a popular move. laura: is this also about the fact that the french are a little disappointed that america is not back quite in the way they wanted it to be after donald trump? jon: i think joe biden promised
america would be back. he also promised what we would see in terms of foreign policy was competent and all these diplomats taking up roles who are all technocratsand what we are seeing is a massive misjudgment or if there was not a misjudgment a kind of "we don't care what the french think," which is not what the u.s. headcount delete it. these are the americans getting it wrong and saying it would treat its allies well. remember the caricature of the trump administration is trump people were rude to the allies and cozied up to the allies. joe biden has managed to really infuriate the french to such an extent that they have withdrawn their ambassador. i cannot believe i am saying this out loud. laa: jon sopel, thanks so much. you are watching "bbc world news america." still to come on tonight's program, canadians appearing to vote on monday but has the
pandemic undermined support for justin trudeau or helton? -- helped him? we will have the latest from toronto. laura: a court hearing is underway in austria over the government alleged mishandling of the coronavirus outbreak at a ski resort. some arelaming the incident for spreading the virus across the rest of europe. bethany bell is following the case in vienna and has the latest for us now. bethany: this case involves the widow and the son of a 72-year-old journalist who died of coronavirus shortly after a skiing holiday in the ski resort. they say the austrian government mishandled the outbreak at that time, that they did not act quickly enough, and the reason people are looking at this case so carefully, it has been brought in by a consumer protection group and it says it
knows of many other people who could potentially also file lawsuits against the austrian government. so they are very much looking to see how this one will play out. laura: on monday, canadians will go to the polls and prime minister justin trudeau hopes the vote will get his liberal parta majority in the house of commons. it is the countr's second election in lesshan two years but has been an eventful time with the pandemic and social and economic upheavals. jessica murphy reports now from toronto. jessica: it is in toronto and the surrounding regions where this will be battled out. over the past month, parties have focused on major issues like affordability and housing
and gun control, all concerns in big cities like this one. bonus -- voters want to hear what the candidates want to do but the pandemic has cast a shadow over the campaign. canada has some of the highest vaccination rates in the world. still, the election is taking place during a pandemic for wave. provinces are implement indexing passports and in some cases bringing back mandatory masking. trudeau has made vaccine mandates a clear liberal message and has been followed around the country by anti-vaccine protesters. conservatives have criticized the prime minister for what they say is an irresponsible election call during the pandemic. whether trudeau can manage to win his sought-after majority is unclear. his early polling lead in the first part of the election campaign has vanished and he is in a dead heat with the conservatives and their new leader evernote tool, who has made a pitch to moderate voters. now the most likely scenario looks like another minority
government, but there is still a weekend of campaigning to go. jessica murphy, bbc news, toronto. laura: we will have more on those canadian elections next week. in other news now around the world, a makeshift camp holding thousands of migrants built up on the u.s.-mexico border in texas. a vast majority of those who have appeared are fleeing haiti where there was a massive earthquake last month. the number migrants under the bridge increased from 80,000 to more than 10,000 on the first day alone. -- 8000 to more than 10,000 on the first day alone. -- from 8000 to more than 10,000 on the first day alone. earlier, president biden signed an exact order enabling the u.s. to issue new sanctions. the conflict has pushed hundreds of thousands towards famine in the last few months.
now to mexico where an investigation into the collapse of an overpass on mexico city's metro system found serious flaws in the construction. 26 people were killed when the structure crumbled in may, and now the victims's family say repeated warnings about the line were ignored by city officials. will grant has this report. will: it was comics go cities golden line. in this slickly produced video, it was the suppose it safest metro line in the capital. the city government claim it was pioneering, efficient, and build with -- built with cutting-edge technology. today, those claims lie in ruins, now synonymous with disaster and death. when he six people died in the awful overpass collapsed in may, which was blamed on the construction. the youngest victim was just 12 years old.
his mother struggling to get through her days without. >> to see his empty bedroom or children returning to classes and him not monday, that is what the -- not among them, that is what the government does not realize. will: soon after opening, it was shut down for months for urgent repairs. the families say the authorities knew the extent of the weaknesses of the line and ignored warnings. she is outlet about where the blame lies -- she is adamant about where the blame lies. she names two former mayors and the current one. she has filed charges of negligent homicide against them. the bbc approached all three for comment but were told none of them will be made while the attorney general's investigation is underway. the famies say they have been ignored and intimidated by the city authorities after the collapse. as some of those behind the
construction are among the most powerful and influential people in mexico, the road to justice will be long and arduous. billionaire businessman whose firm constructed the line was applauded by then mayor, now mexico's foreign minister. recently published internal documents suggest work was rushed to be completed during his time in office and the work was of such poor quality that one former metro director causes a cancer. >> it was built in a hurry. there was a change of the original project and all of those changes were carried out in a rush. from the construction itself to the purchase of the trains, there was a sudden change in the technology of the trains.
will: from her tiny home now empty without brandon, she intends to seek justice for her son, but justice in mexico is rare and her journey for answers and punishment over any negligence is just beginning. will grant, bbc news, mexico city. laura: before we go tonight, we do have good news for all of you penguin lovers out there. the arrival of eight baby penguins has been delighting the crowds at this zoo in peru. they were born in the summer and the zookeepers are waiting for six more eggs to hatch in october. these are penguins which are native to coastal peru and chile. scientists estimate there are fewer than 10,000 of them left in the world. so the newborns are indeed cause for celebration. remember, you can find much more on all the days news on our website, plus to see what we are out on at -- what we are
working on at any time, check us out on twitter. thank you for watching "bbc world news america," and do enjoy the weekend. ♪ narrator: funding for this prestation of this program is provided by... narrator: financial services firm, raymond james. narrator: funding was also provided by, the freeman foundation. by judy and peter blum kovler foundation; pursuing solutions for america's neglected needs. and by contributions to this pbs station from viewers like you. thank you. ♪ ♪ narrator: you're watching pbs. ♪ da-da-da-duh-da-da-da♪ ♪ da-da-da-da-da-da ♪♪
batteries and first aid kit are a good start to learn more, visit safetyactioncenter.pge.com captioning sponsored by newshour productions, llc >> nawaz: good evening. i'm amna nawaz. judy woodruff is away. on the newshour tonight: boosting the vaccine. the f.d.a. debates which, if any, americans should receive an additional shot. we break down the latest recommendations. then, on the border. a crowd of over 10,000 migrants awaits u.s. processing, while sheltering under a texas bridge. plus, it's friday. david brooks and jonathan capehart discuss politics at the border, and tensions between the u.s. and france. plus, an extraordinary man. the remarkable life and career of muhammad ali, as told by ken burns. >> there's so many layers and subtexts to him. he is an epic, almost mythic figure, in which his life and his flan