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tv   CNN Newsroom Live  CNN  January 3, 2020 11:00pm-12:00am PST

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you can do that? yeah. and with two-hour service appointment windows, it's all on your schedule. awesome. so while moving may still come with its share of headaches... no kidding. we're doing all we can to make moving simple, easy, awesome. go to to get started. this is cnn breaking news. >> hello and welcome to our viewers around the world. i'm becky anderson in abu dhabi. >> i'm michael holmes in atlanta. we are on top of breaking news
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in the cnn newsroom. political stability in the middle east has always been dicey. but the death of iran's top military commander from a u.s. drone strike has vastly complicated the picture. >> no one is sure what will happen next in this volatile region. what we do know is at least ten people died in the u.s. strike. as you can see, people now gathering in baghdad to mourn those killed. funeral processions are under way, jamming the streets of baghdad. iran's state media says funeral services for soleimani will start soon and be held in several iraqi cities before his body is returned to tehran on sunday. >> we know that tehran has vowed, quote, harsh revenge, for the killing of soleimani. the u.s. president says he acted
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before soleimani could carry out more attacks against americans. >> last night, at my direction, we executed a strike that killed a leader that was guilty of murdering thousands and thousands of people and hundreds and hundreds of americans. he was planning a very major attack. and we got him. >> it's no surprise that tehran is furious over soleimani's death. listen as iran's u.n. ambassador promises his country will strike back when and where it chooses. >> the really harsh event, iran will act based on its own choosing. the time, the place, and we will decide.
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they should expect anything as a result of this aggression. >> now, jomana karadsheh is in baghdad. and nick paton walsh is in beirut, where he is looking why the u.s. decided to kill soleimani now. jomana, tell us what is happening on the ground there. are people frightened of what's to come, angry of being caught in the middle of all of this? >> reporter: absolutely, michael. no matter how people feel about iran, about iran's interference, its influence here in iraq, one thing you will hear from everyone right now on the ground, is how worried, how terrified, of they are of what is to come, this unknown. they say the future of iraq at this point, their feeling is, yet again, they are being caught in the midst of this confrontation at this point between these two allies,
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between the its and iran. now, on the ground, we've seen over the past hour, hundreds, if not thousands, pouring into the streets of baghdad, into northern baghdad, where this funeral procession is under way right now. for the ten people that were killed including soleimani and abu mahdi al-muhandis. this is a lengthy process. they are start iing where men a rim have laid out red carpets. they will move to an area close to the green zone, where there are more mourners who will be
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joining them before they move toward the holy cities, before qasem soleimani's remains will be taken back to iran. the scenes we're seeing playing out on various news channels here in iraq today. very emotional. many people are angry. you can see how emotional people are. if it's young men that are crying and others that are chanting, angrily. and you can see that and we're expecting iraqi officials, senior government officials and security forces, to also be joining this procession that's set to begin. >> i wanted to quickly ask you, too, this happening on iraqi soil is creating anger.
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just about the american presence. parliament is coming together on sunday. there are pushes to kick the u.s. out, basically. how strong is that? could that happen? >> everything is possible right now, michael. we have to wait and see what happens during that parliament session. it's hard to see anyone standing up against the notion of trying to, you know, push for the u.s. forces to leave iraq. certainly, this is something we've been hearing from the iranian-backed militias for the past few weeks as the situation has become more and more tense. but especially over the past 24, 36 hours, there's been more and more calls to reassess iraq's relationship with the united states, to reassess the presence of u.s. forces, to reassess the security agreement between the two countries. and you've heard the very strong words coming from the prime minister, who has called this an
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aggression and a violation of iraq's sovereignty. and many would agree with him. so, we'll have to wait and see what happens on this session on sunday. >> you can't overlook that this happened on iraqi soil. jomana in baghdad, good to have you there on the ground. nick paton walsh, good to have you in beirut, a place, lebanon, where soleimani had a lot of influence. and this was a man who was in the crosshairs for other administrations. but it was this administration who decided to pull the trigger. why kill him? why make that decision? >> an extraordinary decision to make, as you say. not made by previous administrations beforehand. soleimani, a man who seemed public because of his celebrity. his appearance on the front lines and lived a secretive life in the shadows, too. a lot of that designed by the u.s. to pinpoint him down to
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that vehicle outside baghdad international airport. why now? the u.s. is very clear there was an imminent attack in which qasem soleimani was seminal for the conduct. their argument being, him off of the battlefield, him being killed, likely prevented those attacks. if the attacks were advanced enough, maybe they would be able to go ahead without soleimani to so-called push the button. that's something that only the u.s. is able to really provide the transparent answer to there. senior state department officials briefed yesterday. their concerns that it was u.s. military and diplomatic personnel in three places, iraq, syria and here, in lebanon, where there's only really one big diplomatic presence, not much military at all. and that's the u.s. embassy in beir beirut. they were the target of attacks that soleimani was involved in. it's really u.s. intelligence
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and military sources that have the clarity of the fact about what the plots were, how advanced they were, how serious they were. and the u.s. has a complicated history in the last 20 years here in the middle east, with its use of intelligence. and the trump administration has a messy relationship with the intelligence community. all that aside, the strike was taken clearly in the minds of those who took it. they decided soleimani, not being around was safer and better for u.s. policy and possibility assets in the region than the chaos and likely retaliation that they would see after such a killing. >> yep. indeed, donald trump trusting the intelligence community he has disparaged for the last three years. nick paton walsh in beirut. good to have you on the ground there. becky? soleimani's death will have repurr cushi
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repercussions throughout the region. nic robertson and rahim mosahim is in the iranian capital. soleimani's body will be transferred on sunday. as we consider the images of funeral processions for him and those killed with him, in iraq, this saturday, what is the mood in tehran? >> the mood is portrayed like this, that -- it's wrapping up the whole city, including tehran. so, mourning ceremony after mourning ceremony is held in downtown, in the middle of the town, in developed areas, and also -- revolutionaries the rocks of society, are showing a tribute to him as a celebrity,
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as a national hero. iran is preparing for a glorious, as they call it, ceremony of funeral. and now, the commemoration in tehran and other big cities of iran. >> as we understand it, from state media, funeral services to be held for soleimani on monday and in his hometown on tuesday. nic, when and where iran might exact revenge for the killing of iran's most powerful chief and architect of much of its middle east strategy is still an open question. and that is clearly creating concern in what is an already tense region. you feel it here in the middle east, in the uae, where i am. what's the perspective in saudi? >> yeah.
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the question of the moment, is there a price to be paid for the saudis affinity with the united states and the deep emnyty towards iran. they understand the reasoning and the rationale behind what's happened here. they have long seen the tensions and terrorism implications being from iran. and something bad was going to come out of it. they don't want to see an escalation. the hutus have been receiving weapons. and long-range ballistic missiles. riyadh in the past few years. will there be a response from that proxy, toward saudi arabia? or would iran take direct actions, as the world believes it did when it targeted the two oil facilities here back in
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september last year. that's a concern, as well. or will iran serve its revenge up cold, as it did back in 1988, when "the uss vinsens" in the persian gulf, accidentally shot down on iranian passenger yet. nine months later a pipe bomb was put under the vehicle of that ship's captain's car. the iranians waited a long time and made an intentional target of a person they held responsible, in what was essentially a very soft target. his wife was lucky to escape without injury when that pipe bomb went off under her vehicle. so, you know, the scope and scale of what iran may turn its hand to here, is a maximum concern. a lot of people would look at the persian gulf, the straits of hormuz, oil tankers there ha
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iran has targeted is a possible pinch point for escalation, draw in international attention. again, iran, typically uses to try to resolve this -- resolve these tensions in its own favor. >> nic robertson is in riyadh. ramin is in tehran. thank you. we see the first images of soleimani's casket in baghdad. we expect to see more outpouring of support on the streets of baghdad for those killed in a u.s. air strike. the images out of iraq today. we are looking at images from baghdad. we will see images from kaaba and najaf. and funeral services across the weekend into next week in iran. our breaking news coverage continues in a moment, as these huge crowds gather for a funeral procession in baghdad.
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save. the streets of baghdad
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jammed right now, as funerals for those killed in the strike on friday, get under way. among the dead, the top commander, qasem soleimani, who the u.s. holds responsible for the deaths of hundreds of americans. iran's u.n. ambassador has promised harsh revenge for what he calls an act of war. the u.s. president donald trump says he's ready for whatever comes next. >> 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. >> the killing, of course, is a big risk for the white house. we're getting a sense of how president trump came to make his decision and what the next steps might be. cnn's boris sanchez reports. >> reporter: on friday afternoon, we heard from president trump directly for the first time on the death of qasem
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soleimani. the president saying this streak that was carried out on thursday night should have been done a long time ago. the president saying that he doesn't want to start a war but rather prevent one. and citing a specific imminent, nefarious threat that he says soleimani was planning on carrying out against u.s. interests. the president effectively making the case that this was unavoidable. of course, we're learning more about exactly how this decision was made. and it came up first, a few days ago, at a tuesday meeting of some of the top minds in the administration here at mar-a-lago. the president meeting with top military brass, with close advisers and with a few friendly lawmakers. and have a robust debate about the potential for this strike. we're told that during the debate, president trump was confronted with some of the harsh realities about what a car with iran might look like. specifically, we're told he got pushback about how iran might retaliate to a strike and he faced questions about his
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broader policy in the middle east. the president, we're told, was adamant that this strike had to be carried out. iran had to be sent a message about their escalations in the region. and the president, at some points, got defensive, according to sources close to him. the president repeated some of that when he spoke to reporters on friday afternoon. listen to more of what he said. >> we take comfort in knowing his reign of terror is over. we took action last night to stop a war. we did not take action to start a war. >> reporter: we also got an interesting note on friday evening from national security adviser robert o'brien. he spoke to reporters and said specifically that president trump was still open to a dialogue with iran, with president rouhani and other leaders. of course, that dialogue, that coming to the table and a meeting of minds, highly unlikely. iran has rebuffed the united states when it comes to these kind of talks, demanding some
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kind of sanctions relief before actually meeting with u.s. leadership. now, that the u.s. has taken out one of the top generals, it s m seems highly unlikely that the two sides will meet and talk peacefully. boris sanchez, cnn, traveling with the president in west palm beach, florida. joining us now from istanbul is matthew bryser, a senior fellow and a former deputy assistant secretary of state for europe and eurasia. top democrats are blasting the administration for keeping them in the dark about this attack. in your mind, should they have been briefed prior to the strike? >> well, for a strike like this, you know, operational security is critical. and so, i can understand why the president would have wanted to keep it as secret as possible. on the other hand, this is an attack of enormous consequence, as has been reported for the
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last day or two. it would make sense to have a closed-door briefing, secure conference facility, and let the democratic leadership and the republican leadership of the congress know, especially the key committee chairs. >> yeah. at least one republican lawmaker that to have sat and waited for congressional approval, while soleimani, as he put it, put more americans in body bags, would have been completely irresponsible of the president. that's the view of a republican from florida. we're looking at a map of all of the military facilities in this sort of wider region. and that is on top, matthew, of several major embassies. you are a former u.s. ambassador. given that it's not clear when or how iran might exact revenge, how worried are you about attacks on these bases? installations, as it were? >> i'm extremely worried.
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while i was ambassador to azerbaijan, we had to deal with a series of credible threats that were becoming operationalized. and in some cases, led by this very general soleimani. so, i think that the u.s. diplomatic targets are the most logical and predictable ones that iran will go after. and perhaps precisely because of that, it will be a broader mix of targets to maintain the element of surprise on the iranian side. besides the diplomatic facilities, american civilians, businesspeople. and i would expect there to be significant amount of cyber attacks, for which iran will try to maintain deniability, by via which iran can do serious damage to u.s. infrastructure that goes beyond our diplomatic capabilities and gets to the heart of our economy and power stations and traffic management systems. so, there's a lot iran can do. that all said, war is the continuation of politics by other means, as the adage goes
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in foreign policy. you have to think about what the political goal of these operations are. iran doesn't want an all-out war with the united states. it doesn't want to go too far. i think probably the regime wants to respond. and then, maybe, let the dust settle and look for an opportunity to de-escalate. i hope so. and so, that will require washington, whatever response it takes to the iranian response to be restrained. and get away from some of the rhetoric that was coming out of certain senators yesterday in washington, d.c. about how, we'll cripple the oil facilities and destroy their economy. >> yeah. it's interesting because in the past couple of months, we've heard across this region, i'm here in the uae, much talk of de-escalation, much talk of a political solution, much talk of ensuring there is still an off-ramp. perhaps to the detriment of some narrative in the trump administration. let me play you what mr. trump
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said in 2011, about then-president obama. >> our president will start a war with iran because he has absolutely no ability to negotiate. he's weak and he's ineffective. so, the only way he figures that he's going to get re-elected and assures as you're sitting there, is to start a war with iran. >> president trump said he doesn't seek war but will never hesitate to defend the safety of the american people. what do you believe is in his mind at this point? if we aren't likely to see a massive escalation. >> that's a great quote. that was bear what's in president trump's mind to this day. when he thinks about iran, he's not thinking about a grand strategy for the middle east. he's thinking of dealmaking. making a deal that's better than president obama. that's who president trump thinks he is. his negotiating tactics, as we've seen in his dealing in
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trade talks with china or north korea, in a similar situation with regard to nuclear weapons, is a combination of extreme bluster, military threat. then walking that back and trying to become the reasonable voice, the friend of the leader, the peacemaker who can come up with a better deal through dialogue. i think that's what he has wanted to do all along with iran. that's why he has shown remarkable restraint over the course of the past six months or so, when iran was provoking by mining oil tankers and seizing oil tankers, allegedly or reportedly or clearly attacking saudi oil facilities, shooting down a u.s. drone. president trump did not respond militarily. and my understanding of the meeting at mar-a-lago was that -- and senator graham said publicly, that president trump did not want to look weak. he knew he had to do something. and that something he decided was something dramatic. something that shocked some of his own advisers, which was to kill soleimani. this was a tactic, a bold tactic, not part of a broad
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strategy but part of a general desire by president trump to compel or entice the iranian leadership back to the negotiating table. what he's done is created a situation where it's really difficult for now the iranians to come back to the table. >> it's fascinating. matthew, always a pleasure. senior fellow at the atlantic council. thank you for joining us. >> fascinating discussion there. we'll have more of breaking news ahead of the u.s. strike in baghdad. here in the u.s., the move has political implications of course, with president trump. we'll discuss them with ron brownstein when we come back. ♪ ♪ tough as a knot ♪ rocking the stage ♪ and we never gonna stop ♪ all strength, no sweat. ♪ just in case you forgot ♪ all strength. ♪ no sweat secret. all strength. no sweat.
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welcome back, everyone. let's catch you up on our breaking news this hour. people in the iraqi capital gathering for funerals for victims of the u.s. strike on baghdad on friday. one of the victims iran's top commander qasem soleimani. >> u.s. president trump says he directed the strike because soleimani was planning a major attack. iran is vowing revenge for what it calls, quote, an act of war. here's what the ambassador of the u.n. told erin burnett earlier. >> when you look at what happened here, was this a declaration of war? >> it was an act of war on the part of the united states. against the iranian people. the u.s. started an economic war against the iranian people back in may 2018, when president
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trump decided to withdraw from the nuclear deal. and that started the maximum policy against iranians, putting maximum pressure on iran and they have continued to today. last night, they opened up a new chapter in the attack against the iranians by assassinating one of our most beloved generals, who is popular. not only in iran but also in the countries in the region. so, that was, as i said, a new chapter that is tantamount to opening a war against iran. >> you said it's tantamount to opening a war against iran. president trump said today, his words, we took action to stop a war. we did not take action to start a war. what do you say to president trump? >> i do not believe that the
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u.s. took an action to stop a war because the assassination -- the plan for the assassination for general soleimani was in the making for quite some time. john bolton, the former national security adviser, tweeted last night, that it was in the making. it's not acceptable to agree to what the administration is saying, that they had enough evidence, that general soleimani was going to attack u.s. citizens. this had been for quite some time in the plan. >> iran's ambassador to the united nations. as tensions flare between washington and tehran, the u.s. is deploying thousands more troops to the middle east. cnn's barbara starr has more details on what led president trump ordering the strike that
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killed qasem soleimani. >> reporter: president trump's top military adviser, general mark milley says, that he cannot rule out an attack from iran could still occur. when compelling intelligence in recent days showed qasem soleimani, a top military commander, planned to target u.s. targets in the middle east, the trump administration made the decision to kill him, according to milley. the u.s. decided to act because of the size, scale and scope of the planning by soleimani, milley said. is there a risk, now, to u.s. safety in the region? damn right there is risk, milley told reporters. but to deal with that risk, the u.s. has stepped up its defenses and planned to send thousands of additional troops to the middle east. the additional forces will come from the 82nd airborne division
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that was on standby. new video is showing the bloody aftermath of the u.s. drone strike near baghdad's airport. u.s. intelligence learned that soleimani was planning specific attacks on u.s. interests in multiple countries, including u.s. personnel, a congressional source, briefed by the trump administration, tells cnn. defense secretary mark esper and secretary of state mike pompeo, flew to mar-a-lago on friday to brief champion on the intelligence. when the u.s. learned soleimani was in baghdad, president trump decided to order the attack, despite concerns by some in the administration about potential iranian escalation. these images obtained by cnn, showing the wreckage of the targeted killing. pompeo telling cnn, the strike saved american lives. >> there was an imminent attack
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taking place. american people should know this was an intelligence-assessed basis that drove this. >> reporter: that differs from the defense department. the pentagon said this strike was aimed at deterring future iranian attack plans. the state department urging u.s. citizens in the region to depart immediately. embassies in bahrain, kuwait and pakistan issuing alerts. iran's supreme leader warned that harsh revenge awaits the criminals involved in the killing, iran's minister says that soleimani's death will have consequences. the trump administration touting the celebrations by some iraqis on the news. >> i saw last night there was dancing in the streets in parts of iraq. we have every expectation that people in iraq and iran will view the american action last night as giving them freedom.
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>> reporter: iranians, instead, took to the streets in protest. barbara starr, cnn, the pentagon. ron brownsteen is a cnn political analyst and the senior editor of "the atlantic." joins me live from los angeles. always good to see you, sir. this really is the first major, real-time foreign policy crisis for the trump administration. the big question is the larger strategy behind this killing and more importantly, perhaps, is there one? what are the risks for donald trump? >> look, we know that the two previous presidents, george w. bush and one democrat, barack obama, both had the opportunity to do exactly this and chose not to. and that is in some ways indicative of the trump presidency, part of what attracts him to his supporters is the idea he will not follow traditional rules. but there was a reason that each of those presidents chose not to do this. they thought that the costs, in
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terms of greater instability in the region, and the risk of a war, exceeded the benefits. now, we'll see a real-time test of the calculations because on many other issues, president trump has chosen to act, what he would say, decisively, and what his critics would say, impulsively, without a clear sense that they have an ultimate end game in mind. >> yeah. >> is that your sense that he made the decision to strike out and kill this man without taking full account into what it would lead to? do you get that feeling? >> i have not done retailed reporting on the decisionmaking. but there's been accounts in the press in "the washington post" and "the new york times," that it is clear that the president prides himself on decisive action. he felt very burned by the negative reaction in many circles, particularly in the
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hawkish circles, in his decision to hold back on the military response of iran over the drone incident a little while back. and didn't want to replicate that. i think this was -- you know, it's hard to see. we see from a variety of experts in the region, almost uniform consensus, that it is impossible to predict exactly where this is going to go or to know how far iran is going to take its response. so, i think it is unlikely that the administration, you know, thought three, four, moves down the board. that's not really their style. i think they wanted to send a message today. >> yeah. trump said that soleimani was, quote, caught in the act. and there was, you know, a big attack coming. how important it is that there's clear evidence that soleimani was planning an attack? the democrats are looking at
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that. >> the administration is operating a double-whammy. 60% of the americans are saying that the president is not honest and trustworthy. that's rooted in the, literally, over 10,000 verified misstatements that he's made, lies, distortions, as president. so, there's that backdrop. the other backdrop, the president spent three years saying you can't trust the american intelligence agencies. he's questioned the uniform conclusion on russian interference in the 2016 election. he's accused the deep state of c conspiring against him and spying on his campaign. for the administration to now turn around and say, trust us, first of all, trust us, and second, trust the intelligence community we spent three years telling you can't be trusted is a strange moment here. and i think there will be a high bar for a kind of those that are skeptical of this president to believe that, in fact, this was response to an imminent threat. >> you make very good points, as you always do, ron brownstein.
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thank you so much. good to see you, my friend. >> good night. we'll have more of our breaking news just ahead on the u.s. strike in baghdad. we'll be live in moscow next. checking the russian reaction and what role that nation might play. americans come to to compare and save on loans, credit cards and more! but with the new lending tree app you can see your full financial health, monitor your credit score, see your cash flow and find out how you can cut your monthly bills. download it now to see how much you can save.
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welcome back. want to get you up to speed as our breaking news coverage continues. crowds jamming the streets of the iraqi capital right now, as processions and funerals get under way for those killed in the u.s. strike on friday. among the dead, of course, top iranian commander qasem soleimani who the u.s. holds responsible for the deaths of hundreds of americans. u.s. president donald trump says the sprtrike was carried out to prevent what he described was an imminent attack. want to get you to moscow, now, where our matthew chance is looking at russian reaction to these killings. and the role that russia might
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play going forward, in a region, matthew, already on-edge. >> reporter: becky, thanks very much. as you might expect, russia has a pretty unique relationship with iran. it's a big diplomatic supporter of the country. it often provides support for iran at venues like the security council. it's got a close economic relationships and it's a big arms seller provider to tehran, as well. so, it has been condemning this targeted killing of this senior figure in the iranian military. the news of the death of the commander of the quds force, qasem soleimani, says the statement from the russian military, is alarming. washington's move, it is said, is fraught with grave consequences in terms of peace and stability. there's a telephone conversation that's taken place between
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sergey lavrov, and mike pompeo, where the russian concern about the situation has been reiterated. the russian foreign minister saying the killing of general soleimani deserves condemnation. those have been statements from the defense ministry, russian lawmakers, one prominent senator making the point that the consequence of this killing could be that it rooifs iran closer towards making a nuclear weapon. it takes the international deal to curb iran's nuclear activities, that's been pulled out from by the united states, almost completely off the table. and that's the sort of overriding concern of the russians, first that there could be immediate consequences and immediate backlash. but in this longer term, this could mean that the situation really spirals out of control when it comes to iran's nuclear activities. becky?
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>> russia clearly sees an opportunity to leverage its influence in the region. i mean, it can talk to the iranians. it can talk to the israelis. it can talk to many of the gulf countries where across the wider region. the end game, of course, appears to be a security play along the mediterranean coast. given what you've just said, what we've just been discussing, what do you see as its specific strategy at this point? >> reporter: well, i mean, look, i'm not sure the extent to which russia can really, you know, kind of play into this, in the sense that, i mean, there's certain advantages and disadvantages to the situation, as far as russia's concerned. it will be analyzing the impact for its own interests in the middle east. soleimani was a well-known figure in russia. he was the point man on the ground in syria, in charge of
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iranian forces and iranian proxies that the russians would have dealt with regularly. and his killing would have created a vacuum in syria, where russia is engaged in the civil conflict there, to back its ally, the president of syria, bashar al assad. that's a vacuum that the russians may fill and use it to tighten their grip on the leads of power in syria. it's li ee's likely to be tempo. soleimani was a sovereign-backed man of power. he had a deputy. the deputy replaced him in the leadership. any hiatus in places like syria, will be short-lived. >> what goes on in the middle east doesn't stay in the middle east, of course. matthew chance, in moscow. thank you. all right. still to come on the program, we will continue our special coverage of the killing of qasem soleimani. first, a stranger changing course on how it's responding to
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the worst wildfires in decades. we'll be in one of the worst-hit areas as flame inch closer to wiping out more towns. where's the truck? what? parked it right there. male voice: what did i tell you, boys? tonight we eat like kings! (chuckling) you're a genius, gordon! brake! hit the brake! uh, which one's the brake? (crash, bottles smashing) stop! stop! sto-o-op! (brakes squealing) what's happening? what? there's a half of cheesesteak back there. with geico, the savings keep on going. just like this sequel. 15 minutes could save you 15% or more on car insurance. raccoon: i got the cheesesteak!
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fires are burning out of control in southern and eastern
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australia as dry windy conditions continue to feed the flames. in the state of victoria three already big fires combined to form one single massive blaze that is bigger than the new york boreo of manhattan. meanwhile the government deploying 3,000 troops, water bombing planes to affected states. tell us the conditions and the outlook, ana. it just is hard to get your head around how big this is. >> reporter: it is enormous, michael. it's stretching right up and down the east coast of australia but in particular the southeast, new south whales and the state of victoria. we're here on the south coast, and we were expecting catastrophic conditions. they haven't really eventuated
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and in fact in the last hour a southerly has started to come through, obviously cooling down temperatures, but they are also whipping up those existing fires and pushing them northward. so we were here at the fire service station and there was a convoy of trucks that left just minutes ago heading to these fires that are now sparking up threatening communities and obviously the call has gone out the last couple of days for residents and any other holiday makers here on the south coast who evacuate, many of them heeded those warnings, although weave spent time with residents who say, no, we are protecting our properties. we are staying, we have taken out the necessary precautions doing the preparations and they are there fighting these fires. yesterday we were with a couple and the fire was literally a
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kilometer away. conditions changed, the fire bombing, these fixed wing aircraft and helicopters are scooping water not far from where we are. they are pick up water, scooping it up. we witnessed it today. and they are dropping it on these fires just over and over again. but it is now nighttime. it's getting late and the aerial bombardment has stopped. so it is now up to these firefighters to try and contain the blazes that are now raging and to protect homes. but obviously the priority, michael, is human safety, protecting lives. so the people in some of these affected towns are being told you cannot get out now where you are. you have to bunker down and ride this out. >> it really does defy belief how big it is. ana coren, appreciate it
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covering the fires there for us. and thanks, everyone, of watching this special coverage of the fall out surrounding the killing of iran's top general. it will continue. i'm michael holmes in atlanta. >> in the uae we will be right back with another hour of what is breaking coverage. a workout? ng grease e scrub less with dawn ultra. it's superior grease-cleaning formula gets to work faster. making easy work of tough messes. dawn is a go-to grease-cleaner throughout the kitchen, too. keep a bottle in the laundry room to pre-treat greasy stains. and keep dawn in the garage to lift grease off car rims. it's even gentle enough to clean wildlife affected by oil. dawn's grease cleaning power takes care of tough grease wherever it shows up. scrub less and save more... with dawn.
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>> announcer: this is cnn breaking news. hello and welcome to our viewers joining us around the world. i'm becky anderson in abu dhabi in the united arab emirates. if you want to see just how high feelings are running in iraq right now, the mourning, the anger, look at these images coming to us from


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