tv Jose Diaz- Balart Reports MSNBC December 15, 2021 7:00am-8:00am PST
and she's very composed. she's very measured. she's kind of telling her story in a sort of, trying to be in like a relatable and engaging way. it's going to be really interesting to see what the jury thinks. >> if anyone had any opportunity to meet elizabeth holmes over the last eight years or so, relatable would not be a word they would use, but we are certainly have our eyes on that courtroom and these others tomorrow. rachael, thank you for joining us. thank you at home for watching. i'm stephanie ruhle. my friend and colleague, jose diaz-balart picks up breaking news coverage now. >> thank you, stephanie. i'm jose diaz-balart. president biden is heading to kentucky as the search continues for more than 100 people still unaccounted for after the catastrophic tornado outbreak in the mid-mississippi valley. we'll talk about what the people in the region immediate and how we can all help. this as a powerful storm dumps
record-breaking snow. >> and a closer look at the situation in afghanistan. more than three months after the u.s. left and the taliban take over. and we begin with the ongoing rescue and recovery efforts after last week's deadly tornado outbreak in the mid-mississippi valley. president biden is now on his way to western kentucky to get a firsthand look at the utter devastation left behind by the twisters that killed more than five people. he'll get a briefing before
making stops in mayfield and dawson springs. as the president visits kentucky, search efforts are still underway for more than 100 people that are still unaccounted for, as the survivors pick up the pieces and begin the process of rebuilding their lives. with me now, nbc news national correspondent, gabe gutierrez in mayfield, kentucky. nbc news correspondent, ellison barber in dawson springs, kentucky, and nbc news white house correspondent, mike memoli in dawson springs, kentucky, covering the president's visit. thank you for being with me. gabe, what will the president see and hear from people in mayfield when he visits later today? >> reporter: well, hi, there, jose. good morning. the president will see scenes like this. this car picked up and tossed. this business just shredded. and you can see, jose, and we've been seeing this for several days now, the devastation just extends block after block here. if we look all the way down there, you can see, there are some workers on top of that building, throwing out some of the insulation. they are trying to clean up this part of downtown mayfield.
but this is something we've been seeing over and over again. they're moving, surprsurprising jose, at an amazing pace. you see all of these power poles that have just been tossed around. we have been seeing many of the utility crews coming here, rebuilding some of these power poles. putting new ones up. power slowly being restored to this area. some of the water is coming back. but as you can see, this destruction will take months, if not years to rebuild. now, jose, i spoke yesterday inside her hospital room with one of the survivors from that candle factory. she told me a dramatic story of survival, where she was trapped underneath a concrete slab for six hours with one of her fellow coworkers. here's part of our conversation. >> just laying under there for six hours, you know, screaming and crying for help, for me, knowing that my friend was back there crying for help. and the facial expressions that he was making and, you know, he was trying to throw things at me and get my attention, and i kept
telling him, i'm going to get you out of here, but the fact that i couldn't get him out, it hurts me. >> reporter: so one of her coworkers did not survive. another one that she was with, who was pregnant, actually made it out with her. she was obviously, you know, suffering from some deep trauma, jose. and that's something that we heard from the governor yesterday. the trauma really stands out for you here. as somebody who has covered a lot of these tornadoes before, this one really specifically just calls out to you in terms of just how much deep trauma so many people here are experiencing. as you mentioned, more than a hundred people are still unaccounted for. the death toll, 74 in kentucky alone, and a dozen of them are children, jose. >> yeah, gabe, i'm just wondering, you have covered so many different -- well, natural disasters, et cetera. i'm thinking 37 years i've been working as a journalist. i don't recall seeing something as widespread -- the destruction so large and so horrific in
nature, gabe, have you? >> yeah, you know, jose, it's really tough to measure any of these and compare natural disasters, but, yes, as you mentioned, if you want to talk in terms of numbers, the joplin tornado, of course, sadly had a higher death toll. and there are other places, i remember in moore, oklahoma, back in 2013, the devastation there from that ef-5 tornado stretched for miles. but this one, so widespread, over several states, and right now, we don't know the full scope of the death toll or the devastation yet, and it's already been four to five days after this disaster. just heartbreaking to see. at least 88 people dead across multiple states and the president will be seeing some of this destruction firsthand today here in kentucky, jose. >> gabe gutierrez in mayfield, thank you so very much. and ellison, the president will also visit dawson strings, what will he see when he gets there. >> you know, 75% of this town is
gone. ten minutes ago, jose, i thought i was going to come here and tell you that we haven't had an update, a number of on the death toll in a couple of days, that it was 13 confirmed dead, but we just got a second, a 14th confirmation from the coroner about ten minutes ago. he tells us that they have identified an infant, a 2-month-old, her name was oakland, who passed away in this storm here. that is the youngest death in hopkins county. all 14 of those deaths right here in dawson's springs. it is not just one house that is destroyed here, it is dozens, it is hundreds. when you look around, you see some of the scope here. but really, the images alone, it doesn't do it justice. the damage, it just goes and goes and goes. and now we know that 14 people have died here. their ages ranging from 80 to 2 months old. that 2-month-old little girl, her name was oakland. people look at this damage as we
talk to people here, they don't even know where to begin to start over. how do you rebuild when you've lost your driver's license, your credit card. how do you take care of your family if you don't have any access to money. how do you get a hotel room if you don't have any i.d.s or credit cards. but despite all of that. despite the fact that people have lost everything, in this community, they're finding hope by embracing one another. neighbors are trying to look out for each other, lift each other up, do what they can. just for each other, even though each person is starting with nothing. we even saw in this very neighborhood yesterday, a santa giving toys to children. listen to some of what he told us. >> got to spread some cheer somewhere, bud. you know, it's, it's a devastating thing, but we've got to do our part to continue on and to give hope over here and to let these kids still have a christmas. something to celebrate.
>> when you walk around the rubble here, it is impossible not to notice all of the holiday decorations. we found so many toys that were wrapped up that have now just been thrown about. the santa, that was an outside county that had brought him in, but they're not the only ones trying to take care of the children, as the holidays come up, the county here, hopkins county is having a toy drive. they've extended it now through saturday, where people can actually go to their facebook page, hopkins county, make christmas happen again, from now until the 19th, and you can buy presents on amazon, that they are then going to take to children who have lost so much. when the president gets here today, he will see a town that is battered and bruised, but he will meet people who refuse to be broken, who refuse to give up hope, and right now are doing everything they can to love and take care of each other, even
though it seems like the bad news, the loss might never end here. jose? >> ellison, the immensity of the tragedy, of the pain, of the suffering. ellison, thank you. mike, what more do we know about ma the president is expected to tell kentuckyians during his visit today? >> reporter: well, jose, as one white house official put it, he's going to simply say, he's here to help. that he stands with these communities that have been so badly hit, that he's going to be working with them to rebuild, and working with the local officials, as well, in that process. and that's why we're seeing something we don't often see, jose. republican congressman james comer is one of the officials who's actually traveling with the president on air force one here to kentucky. and when he's on the ground, he'll also be joined by local officials, the governor, andy beshear, as well. it's a moment for the president to really emphasize one of the core messages of his campaign, which is unity. and also, jose, i have to say, having seen your coverage here,
you know, ellison and gabe, our crews doing such an incredible work try to translate this devastation to everybody watching at home. i, myself, seeing it for the first time, it really does take your breath away. and that's an experience that the president will have himself. white house officials have often talked about how he is a very tactile politician. that as much as the briefings he's been getting from his team in washington will help him understand the needs of these communities, nothing compares to actually being on the ground and seeing it in person. and jose, we're also going to hear the president talk about, when he delivers remarks here in dawson springs, the role of extreme weather and climate change in creating such incredible disasters like what we've seen here. >> mike memoli and ellison barber, thank you so much. really appreciate it. as communities recover, their nations support organizations are doing hair best to help. joining me now from mayfield is marcus coleman, director of the department of homeland security center for fate-based neighborhood partnerships. he has worked on more 15
disaster activations and special mission responses. marcus, thank you for being with me today. give us a picture of what a day-to-day is right now for you all on the ground? >> reporter: thank you very much for having me, jose. so, for me, i spent my day yesterday with bishop byfield of the episcopal church and it provided a snapshot of the pain and devastation that was just discussed. we know that our faith leaders and community leaders, in addition to absorbing their own damage and the damage to their parishioners, are doing everything they can to provide their generosity in service to disaster survivors. we at fema have leaned forward with the state of kentucky and continue to do so, recognizing that there are a lot of critical needs that need to be met. and that we're going to make sure that we have the right partners and plans in place to help support what we know to be a very long recovery. >> what help is there out there? how do you let people know that
that help is available, so kind of two questions. what's the help out there, and how do you get people to know that it's out there. >> appreciate the question. so there's three parts right now that i want to share with you about forms of disaster assistance. i would say the first, for those that are ensured, your homeowner's or renter's insurance is going to be your first line of help and support. when we talk about fema's efforts, through our number, 1-800-361-3262, or disasterassistance.gov. some things we're doing, our fema disaster survivor assistance teams are on the ground, canvassing neighborhoods. we'll be setting up mobile registration sites. we don't want people to wait to get access to technology before they can get access to help. those are popular ways in coordination with partners in
the state that we're looking to get to those neighborhoods. >> and so when people call that number, a human answers? >> when people call that number, they are connected to somebody. again, for our disaster survivor assistance team members, those are people that are canvassing neighborhoods to talk to neighbors. i think one of the things that we want build on, as you heard earlier, this neighbor-to-neighbor response is a critically important point to starting the recovery process. and so in addition to getting connected to people at fema, we want to make sure that we are connecting with our faith and community leader, because those are going to be trusted messengers that are able to cut through a lot of the noise and help people navigate what we know to be a very complicated process. and so, yes, they will be connected to people, and if people have any issues or questions, again, we don't want it to be solely relying on technology. we have other places where they can talk directly to people, to walk through their process for disaster recovery. >> marcus, as you know, in mayfield, 15% of the population
there is latino. a school district official pleaded for help with translations this week. when i was there on monday, there were people out there that had lost everything. and when people -- wonderful volunteers would come by and say, do you want any food, any water? they couldn't even understand that. yet they are as affected as everybody else. is there some way to reach out to communities that maybe don't have that established trust of communication with authorities? >> reporter: we have been in touch through fema to provide translation services to make sure that the assistance that's available is available in spanish and in bilingual formats in multiple languages, based on the assessments of the county. in addition, many of our faith-based and community-based partners from the salvation army to the american red cross, to world central food kitchen, i think, are going to continue to be tremendous assets to engage these communities. i appreciate you mentioning the
hispanic and latino community that's recognized here. from fema's posture, we're also bringing in personnel that have some experience working directly with hispanic and latino communities, and making sure that we are using data to inform our outreach in a way that honors and respects this community, but again, i just want to reemphasize, it's going to be that local faith leader. there are several hispanic churches that are doing wonderful outreach and communication work. and so we're going to be providing that translation and those services to those faith leaders and those pastors and continuing to walk alongside them, as well as all other faith and community-based organizations that are active here, to help support our disaster survivors in the immediate and in the long-term. >> marcus coleman, thank you. thank you for what you're doing and thank you for being there and staying there. i really appreciate your time. former trump chief of staff mark meadows is now facing potential criminal charges after historic vote in the house. i'll have the details, next. plus, millions of families are due to lose out on much-needed help, unless congress acts.
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- san francisco can have criminal justice reform and public safety. but district attorney chesa boudin is failing on both. - the safety of san francisco is dependent upon chesa being recalled as soon as possible. - i didn't support the newsom recall but this is different. - chesa takes a very radical perspective and approach to criminal justice reform, which is having a negative impact on communities of color. - i never in a million years thought that my son, let alone any six-year-old, would be gunned down in the streets of san francisco and not get any justice. - chesa's failure has resulted in increase in crime against asian americans. - the da's office is in complete turmoil at this point. - for chesa boudin to intervene in so many cases is both bad management and dangerous for the city of san francisco. - we are for criminal justice reform. chesa's not it.
recall chesa boudin now. 19 past the hour. now to capitol hill and an historic rebuke for a former member of congress. late last night, the house voted to refer former republican congressman and white house chief of staff mark meadows to the justice department for a potential contempt of congress charge over his refusal to answer anymore questions about the january 6th attack on the
capitol. republicans liz cheney and adam kinzinger who sit on the committee investigating the insurrection have voted to approve the resolution. meadows has defied a subpoena to testify before the panel, citing executive privilege provided by president trump, but his lawyer says he has not stopped cooperating with the committee. with me now is ana palmer, founder of punchbowl news and an msnbc contributor. ana, great seeing you this morning. we're learned a lot this week from what meadows has already handed over to the committee. what do we know about the committee's work and how things stand with the white house on this investigation? >> reporter: yeah, i mean, clearly, we are getting a mind's eye into what they are looking into. while meadows has refused to testify, he has turned over a lot of documents. there's text messages that came up this week. they're clearly right to probe who knew what when and who was in communication with the trump white house. the fact that they did, you
know, turn him to say, doj, you need to find a way to hold him in contempt and possibly prosecute him on those, that's a pretty stunning rebuke of mark meadows, a former member. and so we continue to see that they are doing the work. and it's going to be very interesting and we're reporting on it every day. about what exactly they know and they're clearly continuing to probe on this very deeply. >> and ana, another issue, the house late last night voted mostly along party lines to approve a $2.5 trillion increase in the debt limit. that should last until after the 2022 midterm elections. they kind of extended this thing over and over again, as they usually do, but the issue certainly doesn't go away. >> no. this is going to come up once again, probably november of 2022, when the government is going to again have to raise the debt limit. it used to be a bipartisan vote,
but it's become much more partisan in recent months, in particular. but this was something that we wondered if, you know, what congress was going to do, particularly because senate minority leader mitch mcconnell really made a stand on this, but they were able to kind of use a legislative gimmick to get around the 60-vote threshold, so only 50 senators plus one needed to pass that. so this is -- this goes forward, and we now kind of have all of the work is pretty much done here on capitol hill, except for what we're watching very closely, the build back better act, and if senate democrats can get that done before the end of the year. >> an extension until november of 2022. i wonder what happens that month. ana, as he left the white house to head to kentucky, the president was asked about progress on the build back better act. here's what he had to say. >> do you still believe you can get the pilled back better act done this year? >> i hope so. it's going to be close. >> what kind of progress have
you made on build back better? >> what kind of progress? >> when will you speak to joe manchin? >> well, the president and senator manchin have already spoken twice this week. have these talks borne any fruit yet, do you think? >> no. so far, i mean, you see the white house continuing to try to push and remain optimistic on this issue, but, we are pretty far away from actual passage in the senate. i think it will probably get done, but it's hard to see democrats meeting that christmas deadline that senate majority leader chuck schumer put up there, largely because we have issues in what is in the actual substance of the bill, the parliamentarian hasn't issued, much less the joe manchin issue of whether or not he will actually come onboard with this. >> ana palmer, thank you so very much. good to see you. today, families across the nation will receive what could be the final payment prosecute expanded child tax credit, at least for now. since july, families have
received up to $300 a month for every child under the age of 6 and $250 a month for children ages 6 to 17. the democrats' build back better plan includes an extension of the expanded credit for another year, but the bill is, of course, we've been hearing, stalled in the senate. with me now is msnbc anchor, nbc news senior business correspondent and so much more, stephanie ruhle. stephanie, good morning. it's nice to see you again. i've been watching you for the hour before this. that's where i get all of my information. but stephanie, talk to us about the potential end of this expanded tax credit. what does it mean for families? >> listen, this is serious business. since the expanded child tax credit began earlier this year, you've got on average 60 million families in this country getting about $430 a month. they need that money. think about the cost of almost everything right now. and we're talking to families every day, saying that they are using that money for school supplies, for one week of day care, for groceries. everything is costing more. so having this additional
financial cushion has gotten a lot of people through very difficult times. and they're worried about what's to come in november. which is why many people are starting to say, hold on a second. if build back better is stalling out, there could be a case just to extend this. just make this a stand-alone bill. even if you're just talking about joe biden and his poll numbers. what do people say they're so worried about right now? inflation, rising prices. those rising prices are going to sting a lot more if people don't have that tax credit. >> and so why don't they do a stand-alone on this? >> thus far, it hasn't happened. it's currently part of the build back better plan. this idea, this expanded child tax credit had been kicking around washington for quite some time. they finally got it into the american rescue plan, which is why it's short-term, ending now. and they're somewhat scram in a scramble right to figure out to get this more long-term.
joe manchin is not ready to do it, he's saying that people who make too much money is getting the tax credit. he's saying, it's causing some families not to go back to work. we don't see evidence showing that, but it certainly is sending lawmakers back to the drawing board. >> stephanie ruhle, thank you so much. i really appreciate you coming on. >> thank you. >> it's always a pleasure to see you. coming up, we are following mud slides and flooding in california. we go to the west coast, next. you're watching "jose diaz-balart reports." next. yoreu' watching "jose diaz-balart reports. fresh flavors... classic dishes... ♪♪ and a new seat at the table. ♪♪
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30 past the hour. time now for a look at headlines out west. and this morning, parts of california are recovering from a powerful storm that brought record-breaking rain that triggered merchandises and flooding. joining me now from los angeles is nbc news correspondent, guad venegas. guad, it was really, really bad out there. >> jose, good morning, yes, it was. but i think most in california would agree, it was time for some rain. here in southern california, we saw flooding, we saw some of the mud slides you mentioned with road closures. in the l.a. area, record rainfall with 1 to 5 inches of rain throughout the whole region. in downtown los angeles, we registered 2.1 inches of rain.
that's a new record for that day of the year. now, this much-needed storm made its way through large parts of the state, as 80% of california is still under a severe drought. and for the ski resorts, this was actually really good news. new snow after a terrible start to the season, jose. many of them still waiting to open, because of how little snow they've had this year. you've got places like tahoe getting as much as 2 feet of snow. as much as 4 feet in other parts of the sierra nevada mountains, with the first big snowfall of the subpoena. even the mountains here in southern california got a couple of inches of snow, jose. >> wow. also, guad, we're following a development out of los angeles school district regarding a covid vaccine mandate. >> right. so the school district had imposed a mandate for students 12 and older. this was by december 19th. all of those were required to be vaccinated with a second dose. but the district has now decided to delay that mandate and push it to the start of the next school year in 2022. as of now, the vaccination rate
among students is 87% in the district, which is pretty good, but approximately 30,000 students were not going to meet the mandate by december 19th, which would have meant that they would have been pushed into remote learning under the rules, and we all know how challenging that can be for many students, so the district will push that until next year. they're awful going to continue to require baseline and weekly testing more all students and staff, regardless of vaccination status through january and for students under 12. the vaccine continues to be optional, jose. >> guad venegas in los angeles, thank you very much. coming up, the cdc is warning that omicron could soon lead to a new wave of infections. how much risk are we actually in? can we do something differently to protect ourselves? we're going to speak to a doctor with those questions and more, next. you're watching "jose diaz-balart reports" on msnbc. " diaz-balart reports" on msnbc. hello? gordon ramsay?
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36 past the hour. the cdc is warning that the new omicron variant is spreading rapidly across the u.s. and could soon peak in a massive wave of cases as early as next month. despite that warning, some officials across the country are pushing back against public health mandates, including an incoming county executive in new york, who says he will not enforce a new statewide mask or vax mandate. joining me now from new york is antonia hilton. great seeing you. you spoke with the incoing nassau county executive last hour. what did he have to say? >> reporter: that's right, jose. i just spoke with him. his name is bruce blakeman. and he and several other county executives around the state of new york are raising concerns about this new mandate, which applies to all public indoor spaces, restaurants, venues, and they're concerned, because in this community, look, about 97% of adults are vaccinated. and these county executives say
they have been focusing their message around vaccination, around boosting, around reaching people who still haven't gotten their shots. and that this is going to pull resources. you know, one county said that they've already had to ask employees who work in other non-public health-related departments to help them run vaccination clinics. and they don't want to send those employees out to enforce a mask mandate, to send fines to businesses that don't comply with them, in the midst of the holidays. and they, frankly, feel that this is a confusing -- this is confusing messaging at a time when they really want to stay focused on one goal. take a listen to some of my conversation with bruce blakeman. >> i've spoken with health care professionals. our health commissioner, for one. and they're very comfortable that we do not need a mandate for masks. that we have capacity in our hospitals. we are, again, not in crisis mode. do we have health care concerns? of course. we monitor it on a day-to-day basis. but it's not like it was a year ago and a half ago, when we were
in full crisis mode. >> reporter: you know, jose, some of this is also about fatigue. i've been hearing from people all across new york and the northeast, that they have gotten vaccinated. they wanted to go to holiday parties to see family that they haven't seen in a long time. and that some of these announcements at times confuse them about what they should or shouldn't do or how useful vaccination was in the first place. and these county executives say that they get the same angry feedback for many of the people that they serve. and so they want to stay focused on vaccination right now. and while they are correspond about an uptick in cases, in some of these communities, they're not seeing that yet. here in nassau, they still have lots of beds available. they're not seeing a massive uptick in vaccinations, and they're hoping that staying focused on vaccination allows them to stay in that place. jose? >> antonia hilton, thank you so much. joining me now is dr. celine gounder, infectious diseases specialist. doctor, great to see you. are you fearing a potential i don't know, storm of cases in
the next couple of weeks? >> jose, what we've seen in other countries, whether that's south africa, countries in europe that have been hit by their omicron waves a couple of weeks ahead of us is that these are very steep curves. you see the curve in cases go straight up like a straight-up line, of a spike. and you see hospitalizations will follow that. now, depending on how well we do with vaccination, that will really determine whether hospitalizations will spike as high as, for example, as last year. we have done a much better job in new york state of getting our population vaccinated. as a state, we're at about 70% fully vaccinated. it's still not really where we need to be. even countries like denmark that have 80% or more of their populations vaccinated are experiencing a big surge, but we'll certainly be in better shape than other states that have lower vaccination rates. >> so are these surges because delta is kicking in now in
places or in states that we've just been commenting, or is this some kind of a new -- because omicron is relatively new. >> mm-hmm. well, it's a combination of both. we were already heading into a surge from delta, heading into the thanksgiving holiday. and, of course, people, when they were socializing with family, with friends, many will not have been wearing masks, will not have been taking precautions. and we saw this last thanksgiving and christmas and new year's. we saw a surge around that time. related to just social behavior. but now on top of that, you do have omicron. and the new york area, omicron represents about 13% of covid cases nationwide, omicron is at about 3% of cases, but we see that increasing. so omicron is going to be a bigger and bigger part of the picture in the coming weeks. >> and so have -- do we have enough time now to notice how severe, intense, et cetera, omicron is? >> well, my concern with, you
know, the comments made, for example, from nassau county is that you might think that you're in good shape today. this is going to spring upon you. this is going to spike up within a couple of days' time. and so you might think that you're prepared today and when this hit you, you really are underprepared. so i am very concerned that health care institutions will be toughing a very tough situation in the coming weeks. >> dr. gounder, thank you so much for being with me. appreciate it. still ahead, conditions are worsening for the afghan people. the united nations is now warning that the country is on the verge of a, quote, total breakdown. plus, we're keeping an eye on capitol hill where house speaker nancy pelosi will be holding her weekly news conference any moment now. you're watching "jose diaz-balart reports." atching "j diaz-balart reports.
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week after putin spoke to president biden and just hours after the white house said biden will sign a bill boycotting chinese products made by forced uighur labor. in haiti, at least 60 people were killed, dozens injured in a gasoline truck explosion. i want to warn you, the images are very difficult to watch. i want to warn you about this. the associated press reports that people used buckets to gather gas as bodies lay dead on the ground. the u.s. has urged all u.s. citizens, leave haiti, despite reports that migrants are being sent right back to the island nation, when they are detained at the border. meanwhile, in afghanistan, a rapidly deteriorating situation on the ground there, four months after the u.s. left, the taliban took over. i want to bring in amna nawaz.
i'm very, very grateful for your time. what does life look like for afghans right now? >> jose, it is absolutely dire for millions and millions of people in afghanistan right now. you saw some of the headlines right there. but essentially, since the four months following the fall of kabul and the taliban re-takeover of the nation, things have gone from bad to worse to absolutely critical. over 20 million people in afghanistan right now are in need of food assistance, dire food assistance. about 9 million are facing starvation, including 1 million children, who are already in severe malnutrition and experts who are tracking this tell us those children could starve and die this coming winter. that would be many more children than died in the 20 years of war previous to where we are right now. and let's not forget, of course, millions of young girls are still kept out of school, millions of women are kept out of the workforce.
there are a number of humanitarian aid organizations working on the ground. world food program among them. the leader of that, david beesley, has told me that they're really negotiating province by province, leader by leader, to try to get access. and the u.s. is also pumping in hundreds of millions of dollars in humanitarian assistance, just to keep people you and i just can't -- 9 million people could be facing starvation. 9 million. it's like, you know, these -- it's inconceivable, and yet the pain and the suffering is very real. where is all of this money going to and up to when the taliban took over, 75% of afghan government funding came from international aid organizations. where is the money coming from now and where is it going to? >> that's absolutely right. let's not forget, afghanistan was incredibly aid dependent before the taliban took over.
we have to remember that the sanction that the u.s. government had on the taliban essentially became government sanctions, when they took over. and when they talk to u.s. officials about that, they say, look, the taliban chose the military takeover. that was their choice. there are consequences. the u.s. is withholdingwithholds of dollars in state funding tries to use that as leverage to get the taliban to live up to some of the promises they said they would keep. that women and girls would have access to work. that they would not provide safe haven to isis affiliate elements in the area that u.s. officials have said they're concerned about a resurgence of coming in the next spring. and so u.s. officials say the taliban has to act to make good on that. that has led to a rare statement from a taliban leader just this week essentially begging the world community for mercy and compassion. saying we need that money. we want a good relationship with the u.s. so please help the people of afghanistan, but right now as we've seen right there, as we've talked about, it is absolutely
dire for millions of people in afghanistan. >> maybe the taliban should follow that specific mantra. right? compassion. that doesn't seem like there's a lot of that. we heard this week that there will be no punishment for the botched u.s. drone strike that killed ten innocent afghans including seven children in august. what's the message on this, and also, what about the family affected? >> that's right. this raised a lot of questions. let's not forget that was a strike that the u.s. carried out just days after that horrific suicide bombing at the international airport there in the waning hours of the u.s. withdrawal. and that they originally called a riechgs strike they said was targeting an isis operative. all that turned out to be false. that was a result of reporters on the ground doing video forensic analysis and talking to people on the ground, eventually the military launched their own investigation and found that yes, they had, in fact, killed ten civilians including seven children. after their investigation, they
found that the negligence, there was not negligence. no one was personally accountable. i think it raises a number of questions about the future of those kind of drone strikes in afghanistan, and around the world with the u.s. increase fwli relying on. >> thank you so much for being with me. i so appreciate your time. >> thank you, jose. coming up in the next hour, president biden will land in kentucky to see firsthand some of these pictures that you're seeing there. the destruction from this weekend's tornadoes. up next, we'll tell you what you and i, we could all do to help, to help those affected. you're watching "jose diaz-balart reports." you're watching "jose diaz-balart reports.
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it has long-lasting light scent, no heavy perfumes, and no dyes. finally, a light scent that lasts all day. new downy light! 56 past the hour. we return to the bluegrass state where people are picking up the pieces. thousands are without heat, water, homes. frigid temperatures for weeks to come. as we see this tragedy unfold yourks might be wondering how to help. well, my next guest with point us in the right direction. holly baker with the red cross is with me this morning. thank you for your time. what is the red cross doing on site? >> thank you so much for having me. they have mobilized hundreds of volunteers on the ground in mayfield, kentucky, as well as the other states affected by the wornds. this is a multi-state response.
i'm in mayfield where the damage and destruction is just so jarringly apparent. and it will be a long response, and we're going to be helping people with sheltering, making sure they have a safe place to say. we're going to provide food and meals and look at the long-term needs as we help this community heal from these devastating tornadoes. >> yeah. this is going to be a long-term process. so i'm just wondering, is there anything that physically people can do in the kentucky area, for example, to support and to help, because, you know, there's a lot of need, but also you have to be aware that there has to be some organization. >> absolutely. you know, definitely. there are groups from across the country helping here. i can see on the ground we've already established some partnerships with some other groups here in kentucky, including salvation army and world central kitchen. and what people at home can do if they want to have an impact, the fastest way to make an
impact is by giving a financial gift. you can give a gift to the american red cross and any dollar size is helpful. you can do that on redcross.org. you can text to give a gift. if you're in an unaffected area, we're seeing historically low levels of blood supply. if you want to do something that will have an impact to the people affected by tornadoes or across the country, you can make an appointment to give blood and roll up a sleeve and give the gift of life. >> if one gives money to the red cross, how much of that money will get to the efforts where you are and other places? >> well, $0.90 of every dollar donated to the red cross goes right back into our humanitarian services. so when you think about giving gift to the red cross, we're going to turn around and funnel it into the communities that need it most. and can i tell you from where i'm stand right now in mayfield, kentucky, this is a community
that will be needing it. think about this time of year. the holiday season. it's december. people are thinking about going home for the holidays. think of the people here. they won't be able to do any of that, and this is going to be on their minds for the next months to come. >> yeah. and holly, what about the people that don't have documents and don't have access to a lot of the infrastructure that many other people have? are they able to be reached and to be helped as well? >> oh, definitely. we've had volunteers out the past few days trying to get into those communities to make sure we're reaching all the corners of this affected area. we encourage people to come to our red cross shelters if they're seeking assistance. they can also call 1-800-red-cross and be connected with workers who will help them take the first steps and figure out what they need to do on their recovery journey. we're going to be able to help them take the steps in what can
be a complicated process. >> yeah. i mean, people that speak spanish, it would be so helpful now. i have to tell you about a mile and a half from where you are on monday, i met this wonderful family that lost their house that was to them the roots of what they are, and they've lost it all. they don't know where to turn or who to speak to, and certainly, there could be some language aapproximate nation that would be beneficial. holly, thank you for being with me and what you're doing. >> yes. thank you for having us and helping us share the story of what's happening here on the ground. >> thanks. if you want to donate to the red cross, you can do so by visiting redcross.org. or text "red cross" to 90999. [ speaking spanish ] . for those of you speaking spanish and watching and can