tv CNN Newsroom With Don Lemon CNN August 9, 2014 4:00pm-4:31pm PDT
israel. all the while both sides are trading fire. the death toll continues to mount. the three-day cease-fire seems like ancient history. first, no indication as to how long the new american military action in iraq will last. >> i'm not going to give a particular time table because as i have said from the start wherever and whenever u.s. personnel and facilities are threatened it's my obligation, my responsibility as commander in chief to make sure that they are protected. we feel confident that we can prevent isil from going up a mountain and slaughtering the people who are there. >> that was president obama this morning on the south lawn before heading off to martha's vineyard for a two week vacation one day after u.s. fighter jets and
drones began with bombs. isis cutting a swath of terror through syria and iraq taking command of the territory. late today officials said u.s. air strikes killed at least 16 isis terrorists. hundreds of thousands of civilians, of course, are still in hiding from the threat. they are on a mountain range in the north. those civilians getting desperately needed help in the form of air drop supplies. two u.s. military cargo planes dropped on to mt. sinjar where children have reportedly been dying from dehydration. cnn correspondent barbara starr has details and joins us on the phone. >> good evening. the u.s. military took a
significant step forward today. there had been four air strikes very different from what we have seen over the last several hours beginning yesterday. today four air strikes by the u.s. specifically to defend the civilians, the iraqi minority, tens of thousands of people trapped on that mountain top. the u.s. conducted four separate air strikes against isil targets particularly against armor personnel carriers firing on the city as well as armor trucks. in four rounds of air strikes the u.s. really took a significant step forward doing exactly what president obama said he was going to do which was to try to work to prevent a potential genocide of the people. the initial assessment is they were successful in carrying out.
there are reports that some of the people have been able to get out. the kurds helped try to establish a safe corridor. there are so many people in the mountains. the concern is that isis is on the march towards them as well as towards erbil. >> pentagon correspondent barbara starr, thank you so much. so is this campaigning going to work? will air strikes be enough to wipe out the isis threat? and just what is the end game here if there is one? joining me via skype is colonel pet
peter mansore. do you have confidence that this campaign can work? >> it can work given the limited goals the president has set out for it to prevent the kurdish region and drop humanitarian supplies to the people trapped on sinjar mountain. beyond that getting the people off that mountain through isis controlled territory to some sort of safe haven, that is going to require more than air strikes. beyond that if you want to destroy isis, the true face of evil in this world that will require some sort of ground force whether iraqi or kurdish or united states or some other ground force. it will require much more than just air strikes. >> you mentioned the limited goal of this campaign and how it falls short of eliminating the
threat of isis in general. does it seem odd to you that president obama's pursuing something of a middle course that would stop isis from advancing but allows isis to keep control of northern and western iraq as well as eastern syria? >> a couple of points here. i think the president is being consistent with how he handled libya. he intervened once there was a humanitarian crisis at hand and that's what he has done here in iraq. beyond that i think that the president would like to give more military aid and support to iraq but he can't do it with malaki in control of the country. his governing policies created the situation in the first place. there has to be a government in baghdad that has broader legitimacy in which more iraqis can support and then the president and the united states can take more actions to roll
back isis. >> colonel, beyond the humanitarian principles at stake here with isis slaughtering so many innocent people throughout syria and iraq i would think that there are real concerns about destabilizing the middle east even more than it is not the most exactly stable part of the world. where is the arab league? where is qatar and jordan? why aren't they lending a hand to eliminate the threat that is a direct threat to arab and muslim people and to the direct threat of the stability of their own governments sth. >> i think those nations are waiting for the same thing that the united states is waiting for, a new government in baghdad, one that apparently is not a pawn of iran. and i find it unusual for the arab league especially any sort
of saudi-led effort to support a government in baghdad that is perceived to be somehow a pawn of persia in their view. and so they will wait for a new government. if it is one they can support they will wait for leadership. i think that is possible. [ inaudible ]. >> we are losing the audio. we will bring him back at the break. there is a lot more to talk about after this quick commercial break. picture a wall of water rolling towards a city in the desert. that's a threat now now that isis has unclogged the biggest dam in iraq. we have the latest on the violence between israeli and palestinians and the ultimatum
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gripping the region. proven to kill anyone in the way. they rose the black flag over the mosul dam. the consequences could be enormous. i am joined by former executive officer to general david petraeus. in 2007 a nightmare scenario was laid out if the dam were to fail it could cause a wave of water 65 feet deep which would result in a significant loss of life and property. mosul to be home of 1.5 million people. how dangerous is it that this dam is in the hands of isis? >> it's very dangerous. i think in the near term as long as they control mosul and the dam there is no danger because
they need the hydro electric power to run the electricity. if they lose control or threaten to lose control they could blow it as an act of retaliation and wipe out hundreds of thousands of people in mosul and then down stream. it is a significant issue. >> what's it like having served in iraq, having lost so many brave men and women not just american troops but also iraqi troops and other coalition troops to now watch jihadists driving american tanks that they captured from iraqi troops that surrendered or retreated, watching them drive american tanks across iraq unchecked? what are the emotions that you are feeling? >> it actually fills me with anger and an angst that leads to some words that are unprintable.
it is deeply, deeply frustrating for anyone who fought there and who saw the manifest accomplishments of the troops during the surge and how far iraq came from the civil war of 2006 to see it all spiral down hill now given the dysfunction of the iraqi government and the gains of isis. i certainly hope that the united states and its allies along with our kurdish and iraqi partners can right the ship here. isis is the true face of evil in this world. lives are on the line. palestinian negotiators are reportedly threatening to walk out of peace talks in cairo if their demands are not met. the latest on the volatile situation coming up.
hours after palestinian militants in gaza broke the cease-fire between israel and hamas that cease-fire expired because hamas would not agree to extend it without israel lifting the blockade. more rockets from gaza and that cycle continued today. this is what is left of a mosque in central gaza, the target of an israeli air strike. israel's military saying they struck at least 70 targets in the hour since the cease-fire ended targeting areas where militants had stored weapons. militants fired 24 rockets with five rockets misfiring and landing in gaza itself. cnn's martin savage is in gaza city. people say they have been hearing war planes all day. is the idf still conducting air
strikes at this hour? >> reporter: it appears they are. there was about an hour ago we heard some explosions. you can see some tell tale plashes on the horizon. we heard bursts of automatic canon fire if you look out the windows towards the beach you can see red tracers. these are heavy rounds coming in. these are not like say a .50 cal machine gun. it appears they may be aiming at a hamas training camp. we saw many explosions and saw several strikes come very close. and then it has continued into the night. that, of course, is in response to the 30 rockets launched out of here. as you would know this is not the level of intensity that we saw prior to the cease-fire. it is a low-grade conflict but still claims lives and still
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forward with serious discussio s s but not until the violence ends. joining me now is the spokesman for benjamin netanyahu. there is a report that palestinians are talking about leaving cairo and cease-fire talks if the government cannot offer anything. is there really anything the israeli government can offer, nothing so the cease-fire process doesn't come undone. >> the egyptian process was supposed to be based on a cease-fire and serious discussions. when discussions are difficult they can't break the cease-fire and shoot rockets and can't say we are going to leave the table. if problems are going to be solved we need to stick by the egyptian initiative which means cease-fire and serious discussions. >> is this just the future of
israeli/palestinian relations? the idf retaliates with strikes killing some militants and terrorists and civilians? this evening news that a 13-year-old girl was killed by an idf strike. is this the new normal? >> we don't want to see a single civilian caught up in the cross fire. there shouldn't be bombs. we were ready to extend the cease-fire. >> the rockets didn't land anywhere to hurt israelis. >> hamas is the group that refused to extend cease-fire. hamas is responsible for all of it. >> you know that hamas has long range missiles that could hit here in jerusalem and tel aviv. they are not firing them. something is going on. i'm not saying any missiles are good missiles. something is going where they are holding fire a little bit. couldn't israel offer something?
>> we have had more than 100 rockets since the cease-fire ended on israel. most of them have been on communities in the south. it is unacceptable. there should be no rockets on israel whatsoever. there is no reason for this. they should stop shooting at our civilians. >> i'm not disagreeing. if they are convinced that it won't improve and this is it, this is the only way to get the attention of the israeli government, of the world, if their lives don't improve can't israel just looking at the suffering in gaza and knowing that most of the people there are not firing rockets into israel, can't israel do something to alleviate the suffering? we saw protests all over the world today. south africa, london, france, people who want palestinians to have a better life. >> israel wants people to have a better life. the key to moving forward is
nonviolence. the minute there is an end to the rocket fire and terrorist attacks we can start to normalize the relationship. we are ready to move forward. >> in 2012 they agreed to a cease-fire and it didn't improve. they didn't keep their part of the bargain which was non-violence. i assure you we will see the immediate easing of restrictions. >> president obama gave an interview to the "new york times." he had comments about israel. take a listen. >> because israel is so capable militarily i don't worry about israel's survival. others can cause israel pain. it's a really bad neighborhood and they can inflict casualties and destruction.
israel is not the issue. i think the question really is how does israel survival. >> and then the president expands on it. how does israel survive? does israel maintain, how can you preserve a british state reflective of the best values. it sounds like president obama is worried that israel is headed down the wrong path when it comes to democratic values. >> we are ready for a historic compromise of two states. prime minister was elected. we are ready for palestinian state that recognizes the jewish state with security arrangements to make sure that peace can be protected. the question is do we have a palestinian partner. a lot of the frustration is so-called moderate palestinians refuse to condemn the rockets.
the more the i -- i think it is time for palestinian moderates to say hamas does not recognize us. we condemn their terrorism and extremism. we know we want to move ahead. >> spokesman for prime minister netanyahu. thanks for being with us tonight. >> my pleasure. that's it for this special edition of "cnn news room". check out "the lead" week days at 4:00 p.m. eastern. cnn spot light charles manson begins right after this. best to be role models. we don't jump at the sound of the opening bell, because we're trying to make the school bell. corner booth beats corner office any day. we make the most out of our time... and our money.
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