tv CNNI Simulcast CNN February 19, 2015 12:00am-1:01am PST
decapitations burning people alive, now reports of organ theft added to the list of isis outrages. outright racism. fans of the beautiful game getting ugly in france. and buckle up we are headed for insane speeds with the world's fastest electric car introduction. hello and welcome to our viewers here in the united states and all around the world i'm rosemary church. >> i'm errol barnett. this is "cnn newsroom." we begin this hour with a number of new developments in the fight against isis. first a gruesome new allegation by an iraqi government official. he says isis burned alive as many as 40 people during the recent attack on the town of al
baghdadi. cnn cannot independently verify that claim. also, this development -- egypt is asking the united nations to set up a naval blockade to stop weapons from flowing into unsecured parts of libya where isis militants beheaded 21 christians. and u.s. investigators are working with linguists to try and identify the isis militant who spoke in that video. cnn spoke to several linguists who think he's likely from north america or at least spent a lot of time there. another disturbing allegation. the u.n. is looking into reports that isis may be harvesting organs from some of its victims to sell on the black market. >> u.s. officials say this claim and the report of burning people alive come as no surprise. chief u.s. security correspondent jim sciutto has more. >> reporter: with isis locked in battle with iraqi forces in al baghdadi eyewitness accounts from the western iraqi town claim the terror group is
burning the bodies of soldiers and tribesmen killed in the fighting to desecrate them. today the ending indicated it is analyzing evidence of the incident. >> certainly wouldn't surprise any of us if it turns out to be authentic and true given the atrocities that the group continues to wage against innocent civilians. >> reporter: from iraq's ambassador to the united nations, another startling claim that isis is harvesting human organs from victims in iraq, selling them on the black market in europe for profit. a dozen doctors in mosul who refused to operate, he says were murdered. >> translator: these are in fact crimes of genocide committed against humanity that must be held accountable before international justice. without even mentioning the traffic of human organs. >> reporter: senior citizen has not been able to confirm -- cnn
has not been able to confirm the claims and the ambassador offered no proof. they are investigating but questions how the terror group, run harvested organs out of a war zone. if true what could be driving the group's extreme tactics. isis financing has suffered as the u.s.-led air campaign has destroyed many of the group's lucrative oil facilities. while isis recruiting remains strong more and more attracting women and highly educated people these extreme atrocities often filmed get attention which in turn further fuels recruiting. >> they basically peel people away from al qaeda. guys who were formerly part of the bin laden/zawahiri network. >> reporter: reacting to the iraqi ambassador's claims of isis selling victims' organs the u.s. state descent aware of the disturbing comments. while it cannot confirm them it
has no reason to doubt them based on isis' past atrocities. jim sciutto, cnn, washington. u.s. president barack obama says the u.s. has to strike a better balance between fighting extremists and respecting people's faith. >> mr. obama spoke wednesday at a washington summit on countering violent extremism. he says muslim leaders need to do more to discredit the idea that the u.s. is trying to suppress islam. take a listen. >> al qaeda and isil and groups like it are desperate for legitimacy. they try to portray themselves as religious leaders, holy warriors in defense of islam. they are not religious leaders, they're terrorists. we are not at war with islam. we're at war with people who have perverted islam. >> libya asking the united nations to lift its arms embargo on his country stow can better fight terrorism.
that comes on the heels of several days of air strikes from egypt against isis targets in libya. ian lee, as you see your screens, joins us live from cairo. you've been following developments on this story. what are both egypt and libya hoping to achieve through the u.n.? >> reporter: initially we were hearing from the egyptian government that they wanted some sort of international intervention in libya, aluding to the possibility of air strikes, saying they want the same thing that's happening in iraq and syria to happen in libya, as well. when we saw them go in front of the united nations security council on this resolution it was a bit watered down. what they're asking for now is a lifting of the arms embargo so that weapons can go to libya's internationally recognized government. they also want a naval blockade on parts of libya where the government isn't in control of. this is far different from what we were hearing earlier.
what's -- what egyptness is they want more support for the internationally backed governor. they want them to be able to push and fight against isis. but u.n. representatives, western nations, are more hesitant. they're worried that giving more weapons could be problematic. these weapons wouldn't necessarily, they want reassurance that these weapons will not be given to militias. they will be controlled tightly. they're also applauding a diplomatic resolution a political resolution to this crisis. they want to bring the factions together. they believe once that happens that then that will be the strong strongest --. >> ian lee live in cairo for us past 10:00 in the morning. ian, thanks. ukraine is asking for international help to monitor a crumbling cease-fire. president petro poroshenko now wants u.n. peacekeepers to come to eastern ukraine. >> he's calling for firm world
reaction to what he described as russia's brutal violation of the minsk agreements. after weeks of fierce fighting ukrainian troops have pulled out of the strategic town of debaltseve. >> and for more on the town's fall we are joined byet from pleitgen in kiev. -- joined by fred pleitgen from kiev. we know this is one of the worst defeats for troops in the war. what's been the reaction to this in keefe, and what's kiev's likely next move in the midst of this very shaky cease-fire? >> reporter: well, it's interesting, rosemary. one of the things that many people had predicted was that the fall of debaltseve would hurt poroshenko politically, but so far that's not the case. we spoke to parliamentarians and opposition leaders in kiev and most said the main objective should have been and was for pour shanky to save as many ukrainian lives as possible. they believe that the withdrawal
from debaltseve did just that. the other thing that was key for the ukrainians -- this is something that petro poroshenko said when he visited the area of the battlefield was that the ukrainian military not give up its weapons. the separatists had offered the forces holed up in debaltseve that they leave if they left their weapons behind. that would have been a huge blow to the ukrainian military because the forces that were in debaltseve are actually a good chunk of their combat-ready military, and losing all of that gear would have been an even bigger blow than what you have now. at the moment, the ukraineian public politicians are hailing troops that managed to get out of debaltseve as what they call heroes. and again, poroshenko visited them yesterday. and as far as the next moves in this cease-fire that the international community is trying to hold together the big question now is going to be are both sides going to withdraw their heavy weapons from the front lines. the separatists yesterday said they had done that in some
areas. the ukrainians so far have not done it yet. they want the cease-fire to hold better than it is holding at the moment. we'll have to wait and see how things unfold during the day today, whether or not the situation in debaltseve will influence how thing move forward. >> we shall certainly to that. fred what can ukraine and indeed the rest of the international community do to respond to this reluctance on the part of russia to assert any influence on these pro-russian rebels during their massive assault on debaltseve despite this cease-fire being in place? >> reporter: frankly, it's not very much. there are some political leader who said we need to pull forces back to try and regain turf in the future. that's certainly something that seems not very feasible. if you look at the situation on the ground you look at the combat ready not in the area the military, they don't have
the gear to respond to any separatist attacks. one of the things the u.s. is saying, there have been multiple phone calls between leader specifically also joe biden, he keeps reiterating that as this drags on, as the separatists keep up their breaches of the cease-fire the costs for russia would increase. in the short term, that of course could mean additional sanctions. it seems as though now there has been no response whatsoever by the russians. they don't seem to mind that at all. there's very little that the international community can do at this point but to hope that the cease-fire will hold and try to implement that next stage of the heavy weapons leaving the combat area. >> all right. fred plighteitgen bringing reaction from kiev in ukraine. later we'll get reaction, as well, from moscow. many thanks you. appreciate it. let's talk about greece and its financial troubles. once again the country is expected to ask for an extension on its loan agreement with the eurozone today. the country could be out of money within weeks.
the current agreement set to expire at the end of the month. germany has been reluctant to negotiate a partial extension without promises of more budget cuts and economic reforms. it wants greece to work out an extension on the full bailout program. once again we are seeing the ugly side of the so-called beautiful game with yet another racist incident. highway, a group of apparent chelsea fans taunting and shoving a black commuter. and of course it was all caught on video. plus we bring you dramatic testimony in the american sniper more trial. the defendant's family and friends reveal his erratic behavior before and after the killings. also ahead -- >> that's the insane button there. >> oh my god! oh! oh my god! oh, my god! >> 70 miles per hour. >> took her breath away. if you've got a need for speed, we'll show you a car that really delivers. and it's electric. i have a professional secret:
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welcome back. police in paris are investigating an incident of racism between a group of apparent chelsea football fans and a black man just trying to board a metro train. the group taunted him and even pushed hill. all of it caught on video. >> it's just the latest in a long string of racist incidents that have involved fans players, and sometimes coaches showing the world's most popular
sport can often be anything but beautiful. here's cnn's alex thomas. >> reporter: it's a stark reminder to those fan of the most popular sport again the need for constance vigilance ahead of racism. after the match, men who appear to be chelsea fans push a black man off the metro train. they're chanting "we're racist we're racist that's the way we like it." a woman standing in front of the door. widespread condemnation was swift. a chelsea statement said "such behavior is abhorrent and has no place in football or society. we will support any criminal action against those involved in such behavior. and should evidence point to the involvement of chelsea season ticket holders or members, the club will take the strongest possible action against them including banning orders." this anti-racism video featuring top players was made by europe's
governing body. officials say they're appalled but can take action because the incident happened away from the stadium. the paris prosecutor has opened a case and is investigating. the paris incident comes a day after former italy coach sacc hi was criticized for saying there were too many black players in italian youth football. the governing body of fifa said "pride and dignity is not a question of skin color," shocked by his comments "stop it. i also condemn the actions of a small group of chelsea fans in paris. there is no place for racism in football." campaigners say it's still widespread. >> you go back to the president for his racist remarks to the coach of cardive bordeaux i could go on for another ten minutes. in the end, we sigh a lot of people with significant positions in football as leaders who are making racist comments
time and time again. that gives us a sense that football is tied up with these attitudes and behaviors. >> we're never going completely stop racism. that's the unfortune side. i don't think the governing bodies of world football of you know of football in general are doing enough to crack down you know. so we talk about anti-racist campaigns and kick it out of football. i think that's a front. i don't think that the governing bodies are doing enough. you know if you slap people on the wrist, it will ton happen. >> reporter: because chelsea's captain was banned and fined in 2012 for racially abusing another player, some say this club has a particular problem. anti-racism campaigners will argue the issue is much much bigger than that. alex thomas cnn, london. to another story we're following. incoherent nonsensical, even erratic. that's how family and friends are describing eddie ray routh the man on trial for the murder
of american sniper chris kyle and kyle's friend. >> ed lavandera with more from steubenville, texas, including dramatic testimony from housing's sister about the state of her brother's mental health. >> reporter: right after eddie ray routh gunned down chris kyle and chad littlefield, he drove to his sister's house. laura laura believe insaid he was talking about pigs sucking on his soul and he had to take two souls before they could take his. she called 911 right after he left in kyle's pickup truck. >> who did he say he had killed? >> he said that he killed two guys. they went out to a shooting range, and -- he's all crazy. he's [ bleep ] psychotic. i'm sorry f.y.or my language. i don't know if he's on drug or not. but i know that he's been -- >> reporter: in court, blevins described the scene. "the person who came to my house is not the man i knew as my brother." then shoe turned and said "i
love you, but i hate your demons." the judge is not allowing courtroom audio to be broadcast until the trial is over. prosecutors are zeroing in on those last words from routh's sister in that 911 call. the drugs have been the focus since opening statements. >> did you use drugs and alcohol that morning? >> he knew what he was doing wrong. >> reporter: prosecutors say routh ignored doctors' orders to stop using weed and drinking chop and smoked and drank whiskey hours before he killed the american known as the american sniper. >> i just want to get the bad guys. fa f i can't see them i can't shoot them. >> reporter: as routh descended deeper into psychological troubles he started dating jennifer wheed has a degree -- a degree in psychology himself. she says routh could be quick tempered and erratic. a few weeks before the murder, routh held his girlfriend at knifepoint in the apartment. a funk before she said, "i
asked if he was hearing things, he said yes. when i tried to speak with him, he would cover my mouth." that was the last night routh would spend with the girlfriend he'll just asked to marry him. not long after he'd be seen happen cuffed in the back of a police car. cnn, steubenville, texas. next here on "cnn newsroom," the eastern u.s. is going through a brutal cold santa ananap with plunging temperatures and subbe zero windchills in the forecast. pedram javaheri has details after the break. i'm only in my 60's... i've got a nice long life ahead. big plans. so when i found out medicare doesn't pay all my medical expenses, i got a medicare supplement insurance plan. [ male announcer ] if you're eligible for medicare, you may know it only covers about 80% of your part b medical expenses. the rest is up to you. call now and find out about an aarp medicare supplement insurance plan, insured by unitedhealthcare insurance company. like all standardized medicare supplement
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four people had to go to the hospital wednesday after an explosion at a u.s. oil refinery. authorities in torrance california say they don't suspect foul play but aren't sure what caused the explosion. it was so big, at least one person said it felt like an earthquake. people are sheltering in place while officials check air quality. representatives for exxonmobil say all workers have been,ed for. right new york an arctic blast is gripping much of the eastern half of the u.s. more than 100 million americans are facing dangerous record-breaking lows from minnesota to south florida. in fact, it's the coldest it's been in some places in decades. more school delays and closures are anticipated as roads are expected to refreeze overnight. accidents and breakdowns are on
the rise especially in buffalo, new york. towing services report a 300% increase in calls by drivers for assistance. and in massachusetts, the roof of a shopping plaza collapsed under the weight of the area's record snowfall. the cold is so bonechilling parts of niagara falls are cloaked in ice. just incredible. and for more on this we want to turn to our meteorologist, pedram javaheri. and it's not over yet, is it? there are more systems coming through bringing similar conditions. >> yeah. you know i wouldn't be surprised if seven to ten days from right now we were still talking about unusually weather across a large part of the united states. nearly 70% of the united states could be dealing with temperatures below freezing over the next ten days. take a look. over 100 records potentially could break the next 24 hours. some records have been standing since the 1870s, records across portions of the northeastern united states impressive in their own right.
130 million people under windchill advisories and warnings. even the beach of south florida, miami, temperature feeling like 39 or 38 degrees fahrenheit. we're talking about three to four degrees celsius even in the south beach area when it comes to windchill. that's the fahrenheit temperature for chicago. five degrees, mountain us 15 sells -- minus 15 celsius. the single cold ever temperature chicago has seen this late into the single since 1963. it will remain cold in every one of the boxes with the red indicate record temperatures in the works on thursday morning. notice st. louis has zero don 14 and portions -- town to 14 and portions of central florida, 40 would be a record temperature. you have to notice what's going on the last weeks. photo from nasa shows new york city. the northeastern u.s. again. look at the snow coverage across the part of the country. clouds well off shore.
if you're traveling the roadways with such temperatures, a lot of ice forming. not much in the way of air travel because when you're flying temperatures are typically 30 to 40 below. aircraft not going to be impacted at impacted so far 30 to 40 flights canceled. a tropical cyclone across the northern territory, another in queensland both making landfall in the next 24 hours. the strongest one comes ashore in a sparsely pop laid region. rainfall expected there. the weaker ones impacting people around brisbane and points southward where half a meter of rainfall could come down. we've put warnings in place because flooding going to be something to watch. >> many thanks pedram javaheri for covering all of that. covering the globe for us. the rapper known as vanilla ice has been arrested and charged with burglary and grand
theft in florida. you probably remember his hit '90s song "ice ice, baby." >> that's right. he had a few. police accuse the rapper real name robert van winkel of stealing furniture and bicycle was a home that was going through foreclosure. van winkel was apparently renovating a home next door. he currently has a tv show about renovating homes. changing gears now. the battle against violent extremism is on the table at the white house while terror attacks are on the rise across europe. we'll look at some of the lessons learned from these recent attacks. plus the latest on the search for malaysia airlines flight 370. it's been nearly a year since the plane vanished off radar. we'll get you a live update on efforts from australia. later -- >> hey -- okay! i got it! >> she got it. insane acceleration. the kind only certain drivers
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a warm welcome back to viewers in the u.s. and all around the world. it's the last half-hour of the day with the both of us. this is "cnn newsroom." i'm errol barnett. >> i'm rosemary church. we want to check the headlines this hour. an iraqi official says isis burned alive up to 40 people during its recent attack on the town of al baghdadi. the u.n. is looking into allegations that isis is harvesting human organs from its victims to sell on the black market. cnn is not able to verify either
claim. a u.s. military court has thrown out the 2007 conviction of david hicks. the first guantanamo bay inmate ever convicted. the australian pleaded guilty to providing material support to terrorists but it turn out that was not a crime when he was captured if it afghanistan in 2001. ukraine's military says 80% of its forces have withdrawn from debaltseve. the railroad hub has been the scene of fierce fighting between the army and pro-russian separatists for weeks now. ukraine is asking for u.n. peacekeepers along the front line and the uncontrolled ukrainian russian-controlled border. italy on high alert and raising alarm over the spread of isis influence into libya. >> authorities have announced plans to deploy soldiers across italy to guard against possible terrorist attacks. the country's foreign minister is calling for urgent international action to stop libya from falling into chaos. >> violent extremism is the
focus of a sum this we can to white house. it comes with the rise of terror attacks in europe. world leaders are tracking would-be terrorists desperate to stop them before they strike. nic robertson reports. >> reporter: shut down as the attack plea, his killing spree over. danish gunman attacks triggering multiple questions here. just two weeks out of jail, where did he get the expensive expense weapons? was somebody helping him? did somebody direct him to attack the cartoonist in the synagogue and the intelligence services knew he was getting radicalized in jail. why couldn't they stop that radicalization? and they miscalculated thinking that he wasn't an imminent threat. the danes are not alone. all across europe every day counterterrorism officials are facing a similar and growing threat. in the past decade or so 61
different terror attacks from madrid to london and beyond have killed 451 people across europe. in paris, the recent murderess targeting of cartoonist in a kosher supermarket revealed radicalization as an issue in jails there, too. this french prison warden told me his concerns. >> sometimes we are -- [ inaudible ] >> it's hard to do. really. >> reporter: not just short of prison staff but intelligence operatives too. two of the attackers in paris had been under surveillance. but as with the danish killer intelligence services judged them not a threat. needed limited resources elsewhere. u.k. officials routinely face the same dilemma. >> if the security services want to monitor somebody 24 hours a day and make sure they do it completely you're talking about 30 people to monitor one.
>> reporter: the problem exploding in the past few years. >> they're attacking a lot the more individuals than they ever have been which makes it quite difficult to try and prioritize those individuals. >> reporter: isis propaganda has gone viral. more than 4,000 men and women left europe to join them and other terror groups. and even harder to spot and stop sympathizers like the danish and one of the paris gunmen who never left home. both pledging allegiance to isis shortly before their attacks. >> we've seen at least 20 plots in europe since two years now involving returnees of sympathizers of these groups already in europe. >> reporter: one of the lessons of the paris attack weakness in europe's terror coordination learned when a suspect found in greece. >> couldn't be transferred direct three france because of a lack of legislation in greece
defining them as -- as terrorists or defining them as jihadists. so those gaps are leading to vulnerabilities inside europe and possibly could be exploited by the terrorists. >> reporter: and that is a worry terrorists are learning, too. >> it's a learning process that they're going through to adapt to law enforcement methods to see what works and what doesn't. >> reporter: in denmark and across europe the challenge learned better learned faster -- learn better, learn faster than the enemy. it is just past 9:30 in the morning at this moment in copenhagen. nic, you worn if officials can work faster than jihadists considering solid evidence is
needed before police can even act. and as you point out, resources are limited. so what are the concrete steps that can be taken? >> reporter: the danish authorities are looking at how they can change what they do. and denmark is perhaps, if you like in terms of europe it has a big problem. per capita one of the highest numbers of young men going off to join -- and young women going off to join isis and groups like that. at the same time it's a relatively small country. that should make the task easier. that's one of the reasons why people here believe that the police were able to act relatively quickly. that they feel they coped with the situation relatively well and relatively quickly. that said, even here in denmark they're looking at ways of addressing the problem. and material's the fundamental problem. this is something that spans all of europe. the issue of radicalization, who's being radicalized, why are they being radicalized, how do you address the underlying social issues?
if you look at the gunman here he came from a family that was divorced. he was born here, but his parents had arrived from the middle east. you know he'd fallen in with gangs, was in a violent subculture his education was substandard, he had a violent temper meant. it was sort of how do you draw those people away from being influenced by the radical message. and speed is the essence here. isis was shown as very adepartment at using social media which so many people used today. so that's perhaps -- that de-radicalization but focusing on how to attack isis each each sort of online propaganda are going to be the big issues facing intelligence agencies not just here but across europe. >> yeah. and there will be times to develop these ideas and strategies because this is not an issue going away any time soon. nic robertson live in denmark. thanks. we do want to return now to the situation in ukraine. the country's president is calling for u.n. peacekeepers to
monitor any violations of the cease-fire there. >> the task news agency reporting that russia's perm representative to the u.n. calls it a scheme by ukraine to frustrate the minsk peace agreements. >> but there is growing international pressure on russia to do something to halt the fighting. matthew chance joins us now from moscow. and matthew, the fall of debaltseve to the pro-russian rebels comes just hours after president vladimir putin had told ukraine it should let its men surrender to save their lives. what's russia's likely next move here and where does this leave the shaky cease-fire? >> reporter: yeah i think the hope is that the territorial gains including debaltseve that the pro-russian rebels is made in the last several days may be enough for them to feel they're in a position where they want to policemen the terms of the cease-fire. and that's the hope. the concern, of course is that
they may want more territory. i know there's been clashes near the town of mariupol, port city to the south of the area controlled by the rebels. and so the concern is this may be used as a platform to seize more land. and at the moment we just don't know that. this could be a good opportunity for the peace agreement which was forged in minsk the capital of belarus, sometime back to be implemented. it could mark just yet another sort of kind of sign post along the road toward abandoning that agreement altogether. so it's a very crucial moment. >> yeah. certainly is. and of course it has to be said that at no time did russia criticize the rebel advance on the town of debaltseve. so in light of what has happened what options are available to the international community to try to perhaps reign russia in? >> reporter: no they didn't criticize the rebel advance. they haven't criticized anything the rebels have done. the rebels are essentially russia's proxies in eastern ukraine. they pretty much support them.
in terms of what the international community can do the options aren't good. i mean they've already tried sanctions against russia. they're damaging, they're damaging not just for russia but for other countries, as well. they're imposing sanctions. they don't appear to have any impact whatsoever on russian policy. the other debate that's going on is whether or not to arm the kiev government with weapons that would make it more able to defend territory from the pro-russian rebels. the counterargument is that could escalate the conflict adding more weapons into the situation will create more bloodshed. it may not alter the outcome of the conflict. russia may still be able to back its rebels enough to prevail. so you know, as i say, options are limited, and there are flow good ones. >> that seems to be the case. matthew chance reporting there live from moscow. many thanks to you. tens of thousands took to the streets on wednesday for a peaceful protest in buenos aires. they're demanding an independent judiciary investigate the death
of state prosecutor nisman. he died under mysterious circumstances last month. >> at the time he was investigating argentina's president, kristina fender. nisman accused her -- christina fernandez. nisman accused her of trying to cover up an investigation of a 1994 bombing, something she denies. wednesday's protest was one of the biggest of the fernandez administration. it's been nearly one year since malaysia flight 370 disappeared somewhere over the indian ocean, and the passengers' family still don't have answers as to what happened to their loved ones. despite the daunting size of the search area and challenging conditions search officials say they will find the plane. we have more live on the latest in the efforts from perth, australia. and -- it's been so long since we paid close attention to the search. last year the issue was that was vast expanse under the surface, unforgiving topography. how have things progressed?
>> reporter: where we are standing here in perth is where the vessels search vessels are coming in to restock, fix over crews and equipment. they head out to the indian ocean. the primary search zone is about 1,000 nautical miles from where we are standing. there are two search ships here in port at the moment. they'll be heading out in the next few days. but in total, there are four ships that are literally scouring this priority zone. it's 60,000 square kilometers 23,000 square miles. and you know that has been narrowed down from what the initial search was. half the size of the united states. at 60,000 square kilometers still an enormous amount of terrain to cover. but these crews are doing it meticulously, slowly. they're coming up against a great deal of challenges under water. the topography has been
described to mow as horrendous. underwater mountains, volcanos, troughs and cliffs which is proving to be a logistical nightmare for the sonar equipment being towed ten kilometers behind ships at depths of $4 kilometers. it is really in the darkest, deepest parts of the ocean. above the surface, you are dealing with weather. these crews dealing with three cyclones in the past month and a half as well as waves up to 16 mears. so huge challenges facing the search crews, but they say that if mh370 is in this priority search zone, they will fine it. >> staggering when you consider just the enormous of what lies ahead. live for us in perth on the search for mh370. thanks. we'll take a short break. just ahead, if you like driving fast, you're going to love this. >> no!
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some truly insane acceleration. just watch and listen. >> come to a complete stop. >> all right. >> and then before you know it -- >> oh [ bleep ]! what the [ bleep ]? >> 70 miles per hour. >> brooks, hoe [ bleep ]. first of all, you can't [ bleep ] do that to people. you got the to give people fair warning. >> why? >> you can't [ bleep ] say -- >> yeah, you can. >> some interesting reactions there. brooks riceblatt joins us from our bureau in miami. he's a car enthusiast and ceo of dragtimes.com. >> he's also the owner two of teslas and the driver behind the wheel of those hilarious videos we've been watching. so i mean we've seen those incredible reactions from people. some just over the top. talk to us about that insane button. how that works exactly. >> basically the insane button is just an acceleration mode that you set up in the car. and you can drive an insane mode all the time.
when you have the car in insane mode, it offers all the power and torque from a dead stop which is you know 691 horsepower. >> and it's that acceleration from the dead stop which seemed to surprise everyone. but why were people so surprised? don't electric cars get a bad rap as being weak, being slow and they almost need a video like this to excite people to shell out the cash for a car like that? >> yeah. i think for a long time electric cars have been typically characterized as goofy looking and slow. when tesla came out, it looks like a modern car. with the amount of power been it it can out accelerate just about anything on the road. the fact that the person or the people riding in the car don't even know what the car is on, there's no revving of the engine no notice for them to understand that you're about to go zero to 60 in about 3.1 second. >> we're talking about a lot of money here. some when way above $100,000.
talk to us about why somebody would want an electric car, about $140,000 i think, that needs to be plugged in. and we both have electric cars. we sort of know some of the limitations one run out of power and you're looking for somewhere to plug in. why will people want to spend this ♪ what are the advantages, the pros and cons if you like? >> the tesla goes much farther than the typical electric car. from 200 to 250 miles on a charge. so that's a pretty significant advantage. if you're commuting every day, you don't need to go more than 250 miles, the car does really well. you know at that price point, it competes with the other highline market cars. you know mercedes bmw, lexus, and audi. if you look at the equivalent performing car at this level, the tess well's not much more expensive. it's in line with though cars. >> and brooks tesla is saying that this car is great for bad weather. so in the snow in the rain how
so? explain that to us because a lot of people would be shocked with that. >> yeah. it's got all-wheel drive. the d model, the p85-d, the performance model, has two motors. a motor in the front and back and can fine tune and has great traffic control to spin the wheels, very fine-tuned. even in the rain, we've done zero to 60 in the pouring rain in 3.3 seconds with no tire spin and the car's fully under your control and not scary one bit. >> now did any of the people that you experimented this on not swear? because everybody -- every reaction shot we saw had -- >> a lot of bleeps. >> i think we're about 50% swear rate on those videos. you know it really does take you by surprise and honestly, after people have seen the video, i've shown people the video, taken them in the car afterwards. are you sure you want to do this this sure. even when they've seen the video, they think they know what to expect, they don't.
i've got a couple of people swearing afterwards even though they've seen it and said i'm not going to swear, i'm going to be fine. >> 50% swear rate. >> i'd like to check it out. brooks thank you very much for chatting with us. appreciate it. >> thanks. >> thank you. still to in the chinese lunar -- to, come the chinese lunar new year gala has the power to reach nearly a billion people. now organizer want to make it even bigger. stay with us.
nearly one billion people tuned in to watch the festivities from china's lunar new year. the cctv annual gala gets better ratings than most u.s. specials combined. >> each year nearly everybody in china and many asian countries gather at home to eat traditional food and watch the variety show put on by state media. >> organizers are taking steps to make sure it reaches a global audience. david mckenzie got to go behind the scenes. >> reporter: we're at the temple fair in beijing. thousands of people coming in here to celebrate the beginning of the new year. it's the year of the sheep in china. last night everyone was watching the variety show. one of the biggest shows on earth. the shaolin temple school is famous for its gravity-defying
kung fu. still, after three months of painstaking rehearsals they may not make the cut. >> translator: there is intense pressure. each rehearsal is also an inspection. up until the last minute, the show isn't confirmed. >> reporter: the show is the annual new year gala on state tv. at one of its final rehearsals, it has chinese opera singers, traditional dancers, and acrobats. all competing for coveted slots. the school has performed in the gala before, but it's this woman's first time. "i'm so excited this year," she says. "i used to watch them perform on stage. now it's my turn." the new year's gala is an old-school variety show. a five-hour marathon heavy on song, dance, and communist party-style patriotism. it's a cultural phenomenon in china drawing more viewers than
the oscars, emmys, and vmas combined. and the audience numbers are staggering. around 700 million people watch the gala every year. and they tweet on chinese social media nearly 30 million times a minute. so this is a key propaganda tool for the communist party. and now in what seems a soft power push, they're taking the gala global, buying newspaper ads in primetime advertising space in the heart of times square. they've even done deals with twitter, google, and youtube. all sites banned in china. but after more than three decades on air, the gala struggles to be relevant with the younger generation. last year young chinese flooded the internet with pictures of their grandparents napping through the marathon show. for the performers of the show, though, it's very serious business.
"i want to perform my best," he says, "so i can bring the best show to the people in china and the world." they do call the gala after all the biggest show on earth. with so many people watching, it's obviously a force to be reckoned with. >> there's confusion as to what animal we're getting next. vietnam is sure it's the year of the goat. >> you can find out more on cnn.com. and finally this hour a u.s. pizza company has figured out a new way to feed america's obsession with bacon. check this out. a pizza wrapped in more than a meter or some 3.5 feet of bacon. it's a diet buster for sure. if you're a bacon and pizza lover, who cares, right? >> my goodness. the rectangular deep dish pie
comes with its sides wrapped in whole strips of thick cut, crispy bacon topped with pepperoni and even more chewy pieces of bacon. each slice has 450 calories and 23 gram of fat. why would you do this? little caesar's says they'll roll out the new creation monday. >> heavy on the old heart there, i think. that's it for this edition of "cnn newsroom." i'm rosemary church. thanks for joining us. >> i'm errol barnett. "early start" is next for those of you in the u.s. for everyone else stay tuned for max foster in london. see you machine.
islam, but his critics are asking how he can fight extremism if he refuses to link it to radicals. record shattered cold. many people in the path of the arctic blast. how cold will it get? >> wicked cold. ukraine asking for peacekeepers to enforce what is left of the crumbling cease-fire. is peace possible? good morning. welcome to "early start." i'm john berman. >> i'm christine