>> breaking news, the isis militant known as jihadi john targeted in a u.s. air strike, but it's still unclear if he is dead or alive. >> plus, deadly bombing in lebanon. more than 40 people killed, a suspect says he was sent by isis. >> and we speak -- and as we speak, more than 7,000 kurdish soldiers, they are fighting to retake a key iraqi city from isis control. from cnn world headquarters in atlanta, welcome to our viewers here in the united states and around the world. i'm george howell, cnn newsroom starts right now.
. >> the drone strike in raqqa syria targeted jihadi john. he appeared in isis videos allegedly beheading his hostages. emwazi is a british citizen believed to have been born in kuwait. the pentagon has not yet confirmed his death. t >> reporter: the u.s. said they conducted an air strike against jihadi john, the killer of so many hostages seen in those terrible beheading videos.
. >> they believe they got him with a drone strike. isis' capital, its self-declared clal, but they are not 100% sure. they are looking for confirmation. they will have to look at social immediate i can't have postings, intercepted communications, any indicators out there in the public arena, any announcement that he may have died. they still believe, however, that there is a very good chance that they got him. barbara starr, cnn, the pentagon. >> let's talk more about this targeted air strike now. lieutenant colonel rick francona
joins us from la quinta california. the u.s. is indicating emwazi was targeted suggests they may have better intelligence on the ground. you yourself have been critical of the intelligence gathering in the beginning. is there a sense that things are getting better? when it comes to getting information on the ground about who is there and where they are. >> of. >> yeah, i think that's a fair asaysment. >> we may be having trouble there with rick francona's signal. but we will be sure to get back to him for analysis. but again, the fact thmohammed emwazi may have been targeted. in beirut, more than 40 people are dead and at least 200 wounded after a pair of suicide blasts. and now, a would-be suicide bomber who survived the attack claims he was sent to beirut by
isis. along with three other attackers. that according to lebanese security source. the surviving bomber from thursday's attack, but cnn cannot confirm its authenticity. some of the footage you're about to see is graphic. cnn's jim chute toe reports. >> the explosion struck during the height of rush hour. on an open market just south of beirut. coordinated, powerful, and deadly. first, one suicide blast draws a crowd of onlookers. and a second blast strikes that crowd. maximizing casualties. a third bomber, killed by the blast before he could detonate his own explosives. but a fourth, lebanese government sources tell cnn was allegedly captured. seen here taken away as security forces fire into the air to clear the crowd. this man said he was praying when the blast blew a door right over his head.
the victims carried by bystanders over rubble to damaged buildings and rushed to nearby hospitals. >> the suicide bombing went off. the area is mostly empty, it's been cordoned off by the army. otherwise there's a lot of shattered glass on the street, a lot of blood. and it's really just the scene of chaos and carnage. >> within hours, isis claimed responsibility. this mabd is a strong hold of hezbollah, the lebanese militia fighting alongside bashar al assad's regime in syria. isis' sworn enemy there. >> isil doesn't think of itself as having borders. you say isis, i say isil, they say i.s., the islamic state. and see themselves as trying to establish a caliphate, an islamic government covering all the area where is muslims live today in the world. so lebanon is just going to be
seen as another battlefield. >> the footage of the capture of the alleged fourth suicide bomber was seen on lebanese television. this additional detail that the captured alleged fourth bomber said that they were dispatched from syria by isis to carry out this attack. jim schuto, cnn, washington. >> kurdish forces say the second day of operation free sinjar is well under way. they expect to enter the northern iraqi think soon to clear it of improvised explosive devices and seize it from isis. nick payton walsh is there on the lines as fighters are there. but first, we want to go to arwar damon. i understand that she is on the island of lesbos, following the migrant crisis. let's go to her. i think we have that live signal now.
>> if you can hear me, the scenes here are just so incredible. i mean, this is a boat that has just arrived. and it's packed with children. they have not seen this many children in a boat at this one stage, at the same time. the children are ul crying, that ir parents very, very understandably relieved that the that the finally been able to make it to shore. and they are just crying. and the rescue workers here, these are all volunteer groups, are trying to help them up. i'm just going to let these pictures roll for a minute.
these are from syria. she's looking for her daughter. a lot of the time whence they're trying to empty these boats, they get the kids off on to shore immediately. so sometimes they're temporarily separated from their parents because they do want to get the kids out of the boats. and dry as quickly as they possibly can. there's one little child right there being treated. that's her daughter actually. they were able to find. that's her. but you really see the relief on people's faces. you see that tiny little baby right there being held by one of the volunteers arms. you see the relief just spelled out on these parents' faces.
i would have to say about half of the boat was just packed, packed with children. the journey that they have just made stakes about two hours. you see that woman there finally being helped off, seemingly in a lot of pain, not entirely sure what she went through at this stage. a lot of children now about to be reunited with their parents. they do try to get the children off first. they try to get them warm initially, because a lot of the time, these boats are so packed, i mean, just look at the number of people that came across in this one. these boats are so packed that they do take in a lot of water. especially in the last portions of their journey.
he's from syria. [ speaking foreign language ] they were, of course, afraid. but they came over for the children. they took this risk for the children. they said they just had to pray to god they would actually make it. they ran away from isis, from everything that was happening. it was better for him to risk dying at sea than to continue to live under isis, especially with a family. and this is a story we hear repeated over and over and over again from so many refugees, especially those that are fleeing from iraq and syria and
afghanistan. you did have that big malta conference that took place over the last few days. but that was mainly focusing on the problems in africa, which are a very different set of dynamics to those that are forcing these people to flee. [ speaking foreign language ] >> they're from sinjar. that's where the big offensive is happening right now to try to clear isis out. and a year ago, they ran away when isis came into sinjar.
they've had to run away from the various different sects and militias that are in iraq. this is just the tragedy that is the middle east and is the war zones of iraq and syria right now. they would have been driven from their homes in the sinjar mountain when isis came in about a year ago and tried to live and survive in other parts of the iraq, but the militias drove them out of there as well. what is happening at this stage. once the volunteers are sure everybody is okay, once they've taken care of everybody, as you see .haing right here, they will then fairly quickly move them on to these various transit camp where is they'll begin getting their papers processed, registered here in greece. it's a pretty impressively quick process when it comes to getting these people registered and getting them off of the shores. because the boats, when they do
come, tend to come quite frequently. you see more volunteers here treating some more family members. people very, very relieved. from sinjar, again. these are all their kids. they left a year ago when isis came in and took over sinjar. calling, of course, the first thing a lot of people do when they get here is actually call home and tell them they got here safely.
oh, she has a problem with her knee. when isis first did take over sinjar. they captured thousands and thousands of yizhidis. those who could flee did flee. they finally made the decision to try to cross over here and get to relative safety. because as they've been telling us, they were not able to survive in iraq. there was too much pressure, too many militias, too much on them at this stage. so they finally did decide to make this journey despite the fact that yes, right now, you do have this offensive that is ongoing into the sinjar mountains. you do have this effort by the peshmerga, backed by coalition air strikes to try to recapture sinjar. those who are from sinjar did not believe they could go back home, that it would be a life worth living, worth bringing
their children up in. and then you have those fleeing other parts of iraq. those fleeing from syria, from isis, from barrel bomb, from all of these very, very different factors. [ speaking foreign language ] also again, a lot of this boat -- when these boats do come across, a lot of them do tend to be from the same area. people are much more comfortable -- [ speaking foreign language ] much more comfortable traveling in groups. you can just see, the risk that a mother would have to take to make this journey with a tiny baby with so many children. that is an impossible choice. because when you do speak to the parents, they all have that
image burned into their heads, the image of the boy who initially washed up on turkish shores and became something of an icon, ilan's body and all the others who have died trying to make this journey. it's such a difficult choice for these parent, but is one that so many are making and continuing to make. there was this theory at one point in time perhaps with winter coming, with the seas becoming a bit rougher, with the temperatures beginning to drop that perhaps the numbers coming across would decrease, but it's, in fact, proven to be quite the opposite. according to frontex, in the first months of 2015, 540,000 people made this journey just between turkey and greece. and that's 13 times the number that did it in the same time frame in 2014 h. when you look at these images, when you look at these desperate people, one begins to really realize and appreciate the
impossible choice that they have to make. and when it comes to debating how this refugee migrant crisis is going to be resolved, it's the core issue that has to be addressed. it's what drove them from their homes. it' the warfare. isis, assad, the various different sectarian fighting, all of that is what really needs to be addressed on an international level so that people like this don't have to suffer to this degree anymore. >> we're looking at the image there of the little child there. i have a son of my own. as a patient, one can only imagine that impossible choice. as you mentioned, the choice that, you know, parents have to make. that many people are making. you also mentioned sinjar. before we came to you, i mentioned that our colleague nick paton walsh is on frontlines with fighters there. we will have a report from him later. but you can see why we wanted to get to your report there, arwar, right there on the coast there
of lesbos, greece. showing us something that happens day after day after day. many people trying to leave a bloody, hellish war that's happening in syria. thank you so much for giving us the stories of people who are trying to kind a better situation for themselves. thank you for your reporting there. you're watching cnn newsroom. it's an historic day in myanmar as that country deals with a dramatic shift in power. coming up, the results in a lantd mark election. how much protein does your dog food have? 18%? 20? nutrient-dense purina one true instinct with real salmon and tuna has 30% protein. support your active dog's whole body health with purina one. amerivest selects the funds and manages your portfolio. is it run by robots? no no, you can talk to a person anytime. 'cause i don't trust robots. right...well, if the portfolio you're invested in doesn't perform well for two consecutive quarters, amerivest will
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which may cause kidney failure. with trulicity, i click to activate what's within me. if you want help improving your a1c and blood sugar numbers with a non-insulin option, ask your doctor about once-weekly trulicity. and click to activate your within. of. >> this targeted air strike against the terrorist known as jihadi john. lieutenant colonel rick francona joins us now. good to have you back with us. funny thing about technology. sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. good to have you with us at this moment, though. so let's talk about this simple fact that the united states is indicating that emwazi was targeted. it does suggest that they have better intelligence on the ground. what are your thoughts about the situation now? you were critical before about how intelligence gathering, how it started out there.
>> not just intelligence, but the whole thing. the intelligence was slow to start. it took a long time to develop actual good information on what isis was doing. i think we got caught flat footed at the very beginning. but also what i call the anemic air campaign we've been mounting. many of our pilots are returning with ordinance on the wings oof the aircraft because we haven't been able to develop the targets they need to get. we seem to be able to put more bombs on targets. that's a good thing. we see that happening in sinjar now. but going after jihadi john, one of the factors that really helped out was able to use the drones flying out of turkey. that allows them to follow his movements, to identify him and stay on target long enough to get permission. that's been an issue, getting permission to engage once you have the target. a lot of these problems seem to have been ire ironed out, and i think, and we all hope, we've had a successful attack on jihadi john. >> rick, if it is determined
that emwazi was quilled, how does that play into the broader fight against isis? >> yeah, that's a good point. i don't think it changes the situation on the ground very much at all. he was not really in the isis leadership. but he was the face of isis for a lot of people. so taking him out was a symbolic victory. and i think it means a lot to the families of the victims. we all saw the brutal executions that he was involved in. so i don't think it's really going to change the situations on the ground, but it brings closures to the families and i think that's important. >> when it comes to intelligence gathering, i want to get your understanding of how this happens. how do officials determine with, you know, with certainty that emwazi is dead if, in fact, he is dead. >> if isis doesn't admit it we're going to have to use intelligence sources to go in and find out. listen to the chatter, the intercepts, watching what's going on. but i have to tell you, this is not an easy task.
it might take a long time. so we may not know for sure for some time yet. >> you mention you're critical of the u.s. strategy. you have the united states doing these strategic strikes. you've russia on the other side doing many, many strikes and making no et of that, telling the world about the many strikes that they're doing. is the u.s. plan working? and how is it working with or against the russian plan? >> well, the u.s. plan is beginning to show promise. it's beginning to come together. the russians have really been shifty here. they're claiming they go after isis target but they really haven't. 90% of their attacks have been against anti-regime rebels, many rebels we're supporting. i think that in the wake of the bombing of the russian airliner, if it turns out that was isis and it appears that it was, i think you're going to see a shift in russian operations.
i'm beginning to feel we may have turned a corner and u.s. forces are working closely with iraqis and hopefully in the future the 50 special operations forces in northern syria, working with the kurds and the syrian defense forces. i think we may have turned a corner, i hope. >> lieutenant colonel rick francona joining us live. thank you so much for your insights. >> thanks, george. >> we now know the results of a landmark election in myanmar. aung san suu kyi's national league for democracy has won an absolute majority in the country's parliament, giving that party enough seats to choose the next president. sunday's vote was hailed as the freest election in decades for the very latest on this historic election, let's go now 20 simon
mosa. good to have you with us. it's worth pointing out that the military leaders released aung san suu kyi on november 13, today marks five years. we know her party has won a big majority. >> yeah, absolutely, george. what an historic moment. it couldn't have come at a better time, as you mentioned. that anniversary of her being released from house arrest. this is a woman, and a people of a country that has been waiting for 25 years to be able to go to the polls, to vote in a free election that comes to fruition when there was a free election. the military wouldn't accept it, put her in house arrest. she spent almost a lifetime, 20 year imprisoned in house arrest.
and finally was released five years ago to the day today. on this day today, we are hearing that she has the people that voted for her won that majority. it brings her into parliament, gives everyone a say. but this is, and as president obama put it, a step towards myanmar's transition into democracy. there is a significant way to go. george? >> aung san suu kyi due to a clause in the constitution cannot hold the position of president. still before this election, she alluded to very cryptic statements saying that there could be a position above the president. have we heard anything more about what that could mean? >> i think that's a lot of political posturing. the military is still holding
tight control of raips. they retained a quarter of the lower house for themselves in terms of parliamentary seats, which is way this makes aung san suu kyi and the national league for democracy's win of 75% of the parliament so significant. they still maintain a lot of control, and they have barred her constitutionally from becoming president. but she's saying she has won a seat, her party has won a majority. and she will still hold significant influence. the challenges have only begun for her. >> thank you so much for your reporting. you're watching cnn news room around the world. be right back after this. can a business have a mind?
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