tv The 11th Hour With Brian Williams MSNBC October 20, 2017 11:00pm-12:00am PDT
nikki sixx. brian williams is next. tonight fbi agents are trawling 5,000 miles to an open field in africa to find out what happened as the 11th hour gets under way on a friday night. on this friday evening, good evening once again from our nbc news headquarters here in new york. as we come to the end of day 274 of the trump administration. tonight the "washington post" he
had editorial board has taken the rare step of calling on the white house chief of staff to apologize to a member of congress. and now for five days in a row the president's handling of the families of fallen american soldiers has been at the center of the news. a continuing story of the president's own making. the president has now spoken for the first time about his comments the chief of staff made in the white house briefing room yesterday. four star retired marine general john kelly was moved to discuss publicly something that is intensely personal for him, his son's death in afghanistan, just to stress how sacred that topic should be. now in a new interview the president is talking about it again. >> he was so offended because he was in the room when i made the call. and -- so were other people. and the call was a very nice call. he was so offended that a woman would be -- that somebody would be listening to that call.
he was -- he actually couldn't believe it. actually, he said to me, sir, this is not acceptable. this is really not -- and he knew -- i was so nice. i was -- look, i've called many people, and i would think that every one of them appreciated it. >> in his briefing room remarks this week, general kelly also criticized florida democratic congresswoman frederica wilson. kelly said he had seen her speak two years ago at the dedication of a new fbi field office named for two lauchlt officers killed in a fire fight. he accused her of self agrandizing in the speech, saying she talked about how she called president obama to get funding for the building. kelly said he was stunned by it. called her an empty barrel making noise. but a local newspaper today shared the video of the entire speech. you can find it, watch it all on the internet. she speaks efuse civil about law enforcement, at one point asking all law enforcement officers present to stand and be sa lutd.
she praises democrats and republicans. she asks the audience to repeat after her the motto of the fbi, fidelity, bravery, and integrity. and she receives a standing ovation. in light of the fact that we can now see the whole speech, today reporters asked white house press secretary sarah huckabee sanders whether kelly stood by his statement? >> general kelly said he was stunned that representative wilson made comments at a building dedication honoring slain fbi agents about her own actions in congress, including lobbying former president obama on legislation. as general kelly pointed out, if you're able to make a sacred act like honoring american heroes all about yourself you're an empty barrel. >> in fact, have you seen the speech? >> i have. >> and thenup that most of it was her efuse civil praising these fbi agent and when she was talking about what she did in
congress, she was not talking about getting security for $20 million. she was talking about naming the building for those fbi agent who she then went on to efuse civil praise and that was the bulk of the speech. >> she also mention that had and she also had quite a few comments that day that weren't part of that speech and video that were also witnessed by many people that were there. what general kelly referenced yesterday. >> tell us specifically. >> he said there was a lot of grandstanding. he was stunned that she had taken that opportunity to make it about herself. >> will he come out here and talk to us -- >> i think he addressed the facts thoroughly yesterday. >> no. he was wrong yesterday. >> if you want to go after general kelly, that's up to you, but i think that -- if you want to get into a debate with a four star marine general, i think that that's something highly inappropriate. >> remember, that comment right there. a few hours later after facing criticism about saying reporters should not debate generals, the
white house put out this statement. quote, of course everyone can be questioned, but after witnessing general kelly's heart felt and somber account, we should all be able to agree that impugning his credibility on how best to honor fallen heroes is not appropriate. today the white house also criticized the media for continuing to talk about this story. >> you guys are the ones talking a lot about that story, and he felt it was important to address you and all of america directly. this story has been given an eformous amount of coverage over the last 48 hours, and he thought it was important that people got a full and accurate picture of what took place. it should have ended yesterday after general kelly's comments. but it didn't. it continued. and it's still continuing today. >> it continues in large part because just a few hours after kelly finished in the briefing room, the president wrote this on twitter just before 11:00 at night. the fake news is going crazy with whacky congresswoman wilson, a democrat, who was secretly on a very personal call
and gave a total lie on content. and tonight as we mentioned the "washington post" he had editorial board is out with this, quote, john kelly owes the con woman an apology. let's get to that with our lead off panel tonight. mr. rucker, i'll read from your he had editorial board tonight, and as we said, this is dramatic. it is unfortunate that the sacrifice of brave people, such as the four soldiers killed in niger, can get over poured by the petition name-calling of politics. that is a point mr. kelly was trying to make thursday and that he undercut with his misrepresentation of ms. wilson. he needs to set the record
straight. philip, how did this go so wrong? >> let me just start by pointing out to the viewers that don't know the ins and outs of the newspaper business that i'm a reporter, not part of the he had editorial board. >> yes. forgive me. >> no. that's correct. >> there's a wall between the two, ideally. >> this all went wrong starting monday afternoon when the president made this an issue and began to politicize this incident in niger where four soldiers were killed. the president had been silent for 12 straight days about that. and immediately, you know, began an astack basically on president obama. it spierld out of control for this white house for five straight days. and i think yesterday chief of staff john kelly wanted to use his credibility as a battlefield commander, as somebody who had lost his own son to war to come out and try to put an end to this story, but he did not get his facts straight. he misrepresented what congresswoman wilson did in florida and that has just compounded the problems for this administration.
>> philip, i've watched this story covered on television. we've been part of it now for five days, and i've heard over and over and over that the white house has a tool in its toolbox to stop this and other issues before they become a weeklong story, and that is to take the high road and end it. in this case again the road not taken? >> that's right. but this is a president who hasn't ever really taken the high road when these controversies come up. he always want to fight back. he always wants to defend hills, pounce on whoever he thinks his enemy of the moment might be. and in this case his enemy is frederica will sop, the congresswoman from florida, who is not only the representative of the johnson family which lost this young man in africa, but he was a mentor in her program. she was a family friend. she knew this family very well, and that's one of the reasons that she felt so compelled to come out and speak up about it. >> hey, eugene, your headline nicely makes up my next question.
my first to you. what john kelly got wrong about representative frederica wilson and the johnson family. can you share with our viewers the short version? >> yeah. absolutely. this is a story about identity and how we view people. and i think the general communicated that he was stunned that a member of congress would participate in this phone call. and i think what he left out for people is that representative wilson is not primarily a member of congress to the johnson family. she's known them for decades. she was the principal of sergeant johnson's father's school. sergeant johnson and two of his brothers were in her mentor ship program. she's very much like family to them. she referred to him as her son. and so she wasn't listened to the phone daul as a lawmaker. she was listening to the phone call as a family friend, if not even a family member. and i think what it got to, what i tried to get to is the idea that for many americans family
is a far broader concept that maybe the nuclear traditional family ideas that we see perhaps championed by general kelly. in his attempt to discredit her he ended up telling a story that wasn't even true and more importantly had absolutely nothing to do with why these four men are in niger. >> and here we are on a friday night and we're still talking about it. shannon, there was general kelly in the briefing room and i think it was nicolle wallace who said this week he can only do this once. he put the full weight of his emotion as a gold star father, his moral authority, the stars that used to rest on his shoulders, and yet tonight here he is kind of the story. >> right. i imagine he wanted anything but to be the story. >> of course. >> at the beginning of this week when we set off on this week on monday. when you look at companies and how they handle crisis communications and situations like this and president trump, a
businessman, he was going to run the white house. he's going to run the country like a business. i covered companies for a long time before this white house gig. i could not imagine a company handling crisis communication like this. you get your facts straight. if you're going to respond, if you're going to send someone out to respond, know it's going to fan the flames. it's going to drag the story on a day longer and you have to have that statement sealed air tight. you can't come out and make a -- even the tiniest error because it will fan the flames, exacerbate the story. sarah sanders has been doing communications, politics, campaigns, pretty much her whole life because of the work she did coming out with her father. but from a pr dmuks standpoint, if you talk to people who do corporate pr, they will tell you they've done everything wrong this week to make this story drag out for such a long period of time. >> philip rucker, you're the white house bureau chief for the "washington post." and when you hear from the podium the notion that a retired
four star marine general ought not to be questioned on something like this, what does that do to you? >> it's pretty chilling. i was watching that press conference today and couldn't believe what sarah sanders said and it's worth noting that she did come out with that statement to try to clarify it a little bit. there are two problems with that statement. one is that even if he were a military official it is our job as journalists to ask questions of every public official, whether they're in the military or the government as a civilian of the but secondly, he was not speaking yesterday in the capacity as a general. he was speaking as the white house chief of staff, as effectively a political staff trying to help his boss, the president, get out of a public relations crisis. >> eugene, it strikes me that here we are having the discussion all around this issue once again. it's been reduced to this wordy keep hearing this keep is obscene. this is an obscene turn for a
conversation that should be about our brave americans willing to put on the uniform and go all over the world for their country. we have these four returning veterans who didn't make it. tell us a couple more things about sergeant johnson so we can try to make this a little more about him. >> absolutely. i mean, he was married to his high school sweetheart who was pregnant and unfortunately was the mother of two other young kids, a six-year-old and i believer take two-year-old boy as well. he was really into popping wheel i didn't see on bikes when he was a kid. just a very active young man. and just very much involved in trying to figure out how he could serve his country and give back to his community. and that's why he got involved in the 5,000 role models program that the representative founded. and that's why he got involved in the mail terry. and so this whole story is about him and his service and his sacrifice in this war, in this area that so few americans are
even aware of. and not just americans, i mean, we even saw senator john mccain communicate that he has been made insufficiently aware of the intelligence as to why sergeant johnson was there. and so i think it's so important to focus on him, this young man who gave his life to fight for freedom. and the military, a community that the president says he honors very much. >> and thank you for that, eugene. he's also being laid to rest tomorrow in a military funeral s correct is this. >> yes. absolutely. >> okay. shannon, one more question. and it is useful that you have covered other disciplines in life prior to this, because this may speak to had that. is there a broader lesson here on the people who are drawn into the center of this administration on what can happen to people who find themselves working for this administration. >> well, if you think you're not going to be part of the story, you are going to be part of the story. everyone in this inner circle of
this president is under an immense skut any, is a huge piece of attention. you know, we just saw the sort of fan domestic around sean spicer or steve bannon. there's so much interest and attention on this administration that those in the inner circle, they have a spotlight on them. and it seems like nine months in they should have learned this now, but facts matter. the media, we will hold them account alk when the fights aren't right, we will question them on it. we will race those points. if they don't want the conversation to continue down that path, get the facts straight, and we won't keep asking about them. i guess those would be my lessons at 11:00 on friday after a week lining every like this. >> i get it. and i hope our viewers note just how much these three print journals have added to our discussion. appreciate it very much.
as we approach our first break tonight, still ahead, was the ambush that killed these four u.s. soldiers in africa due at least in part to this quote we're hearing about a massive intelligence failure. plus the white house says it's highly inappropriate as we've been reporting to question a retired four star general. up next, we'll ask a retired four star general what he thinks about that when the 11th hour continues on a friday night. hi, i'm the internet! you know what's difficult? adulting... tj! get a job! hi, guys. i'm back. time to slay! heals, heals, heals! yes! youuuu! no, i have a long time girlfriend. mom! i need my macaroni!!! you know what's easy? building your website with godaddy. pick a domain name. choose a design. you can build a website in under an hour. yeah! whoo! yes!
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four-star marine general, i think that's something highly inappropriate. >> white house press secretary sarah huckabee sanders introducing this notion that generals, retired generals, even retired generals working in a political capacity as a civil servant, as chief of staff in the trump white house, shouldn't be questioned, that that would somehow be inappropriate or as eli stocky else of the wall street journal put it. white house just implied that kelly's rank and military service should deter the media from questioning the chief of staff. let's ask a retired four-star general, shall we? barry mccaffrey. also with us, political analyst steve submit a veteran of the bush white house and the mccain
campaign. general, i don't mean to put you on the spot. i know it's a small community of active and retired four-star generals, but are we allowed to disagree with you? do you get any of that at home? >> well, i don't encourage it personally, brian, but i think, you know, when it comes to the serious question of -- by the way, i was a retired four-star working in the clinton administration, in the white house, ran a 200 person agency. took some serious shots out of the political system. and so general kelly obviously is subject not just as a white house chief of staff but as a serving military officer to being questioned by the media, the congress, the court system. of course. it's a democracy under the rule of law. >> but it sounded there briefly like there was a desire for us to be a country where people don't disagree with generals. and ooing you've gone to war against a couple of those in your lifetime. >> yeah. no. that was a foolish statement on the part of the white house
press secretary. it's ridiculous. this has been a terrible week for general kelly. he got his facts wrong on this congresswoman. he got angry. i think he's extremely fragile and vulnerable about his son. he doesn't like to talk about it, and so suddenly the president, threw him under the bus, i think, on his own family tragedy. so they're not doing very well. they need to shut up and try and get back to focusing on keeping us out of war with north korea. >> do you think, general, it would help to stop this? i'm guessing the general thought that this would be the period at the end of the sentence, that con jurg up all of that personal hurt and talking about being a gold star parent as he did would end this. do you think he now can end it with an apology to the member of congress? >> well, i wouldn't advice him to do that. i think he ought to shut up and try and move on.
you know, again, no good is going to come of this. suddenly it's consumed the nation for five days. a ham fisted call by the president to a widow, i'm assuming it was ham fisted. it got taken the wrong way. i'm sure mr. trump didn't intend to insult this poor woman who had lost her husband in combat. so, you know, i think they need to get off the stage here and let it die. >> steve submit, our friend jack jacobs keeps using the word obscene to describe this week. and we know why he's saying that, because at the heart of this story four of our best dead in a field in central africa. at the heart of this story, what it's like to be a gold star family in this country turned into an obscene distraction. i want to get your take on what's been happening this week and what we witnessed there in the briefing room today.
>> well, first off, obscene is exactly right for it. it is an obscene display. i can't think of a more disgusting moment in american politics in my lifetime than the one we have fallen into into this sewer over these issues. the person who did it, of course, is the president of the united states, donald trump, who sought to make himself look good by disparaging his predecessor's commitments to the families of fallen american heroes who gave what lincoln described as the last full measure of devotion to the country. as for the press secretary and her appallingly ignorant statement, perhaps she is unaware of the national security adviser, lieutenant john h.r. mcmaster dissertation dereliction of duty. she should read it. she should understand the necessity in a free society of questioning four-star generals.
h.r. mcmaster did when he wrote the book focusing on from his perspective the dereliction of the senior officer corps of the united states military, who was serially dishonest with both the political leadership and the american people over the conduct of that 1966, 67, 68. and it was officers like general mccaffrey who rebuilt the reputation of the united states military and made it today the only news in this country that has grown in the he is steam of the american people. while every other institution in the country has collapsed and lost the trust of the american people. so when we think about rebuilding trust, the lessons of the military are fundamental to understanding how to do it. lastly, general kelly served in uniform for 46 years. 46 years. a man of unbelievable respect. not a bad word ever said about
general kelly, someone known for his rectitude. this is what happens when you're in a white house in close proximity to donald trump for under 90 days. this is a sad moment for general kelly. what i would advise him to do is not to apologize publicly but privately and keeping with the man who we all know who he is. pick up the phone to the congresswoman, do the right thing, and then order everybody in the white house to stop talking about this forever and ever. but let's also remember that it was donald trump who attacked a gold star family at the republic national convention. it was donald trump who attacked the service of john mccain john mccain and his fellow prisoners of war. it was donald trump who did he say indicated of fallen cia officers by talking about his crowd sizes and the size of hids election victory. it was donald trump who talked
about there being some good nazis. it was donald trump over and over and over and over again who has tape us into the sewer. who has taken our discourse in this country and lowered it. and white when we think weigh dant go any lower, he finds a way to get us into another basement full of sewage. and so general kelly shut use his authority in that white house to bring this obscenity to an end before we start another week going down this rabbit hole. >> general mccaffrey, after hearing that from our friend steve, what gives you hope going forward? >> wow. i think steve pretty well summed it up. we've got a real problem going forward here. look, i think that the bottom line to all of this is we still have a strong institution in this country. congress is still operating, the media is still aggressive. we're still the wealthiest
society in the history of mankind. the armed forces are still the most powerful institution on the face of the earth. i was just today in orlando, the orange county sheriff's department honoring their killed in action officers, and i'm reminded of the 750,000 law enforcement people we've got across the country who are integrity and faithful. as the congresswoman pointed out in her talk -- i'm still pretty upbeat about america. we're going to have to get through the next couple of three years and hopefully not get into trouble. >> we'll dedicate this to all the people in uniform around the world, including all the law enforcement folks in the middle of working the midnight, 8:00 a.m. shift in certain parts of this country. gentlemen, thank you so much. you're the om two guys i wanted to hear from on this sunl today. we appreciate it. come up for us, another break. some tough questions from lawmakers in a report citing
i can't give you the details. they died in defense of america. this war is getting hot in places where it's been cool. >> as investigations into this ambush that killed four u.s. soldiers continue, south korea republican senator lindsey graham today talking about this growing u.s. military presence on the continent of africa as the battle with the islamic state moves west, telling reporters, quote, you're going to see more actions in africa, not less. now, nbc news is reporting, quote, eye senior congressional aid who has been briefed on the deaths of our u.s. servicemen in niger says the ambush by militants stemmed in part from a massive intelligence failure. for more we're joined by hans nichols and alana shore. welcome to you both. hans, you and kourtney have been doing a superb job for us over there covering the story this week. can you clarify for our viewers
what was the mission and what have we so far learned about what went wrong in. >> well, officially the mission was something called a key leader ingaugement which meant that a small patrol of u.s. forces, they were green ba race working with nigerian partners were supposed to go out and meet with tribal elders. now, what officials are saying is that they were likely delayed when they were meeting with those tie bral elders and then after that they were ambushed. there's going to be a top to bottom, hour by hour, almost minute by minute formal investigation into what went wrong, so rt of intelligence planning there should have been. what sort of overhead support was there. there wasn't direct drone support. the close air support from the french came about 30 minutes into the ballot. so there are a lot of questions and more understandably why on capitol hill they're asking and demanding more answers. >> that brings us over to
capitol hill. i'm wondering in john mccain is driving this, alana, i said last night, this is a guy in the middle of key mow, doesn't have time or temperament right now. is it fair to say he is speeding this up and driving the investigation thus far? >> absolutely. and not just because of what he's going through personally but because as a decorated war veteran and chairman of the armed services committee he takes matters like this extreekel seriously. if you listen to h.r. mcmaster saying he was personally hurt by what mccain said. >> hansz, it looks like we have americans, american military in 176 places around the world sfwlool yeah. >> excluding humanitarian
missions and in some postings where there's just one or two members of the u.s. military. but part of what this story has done is aquake end some civilians to just how far flung these places are. >> in niger there are 800 u.s. forces roughly. most of them are building a new drone base. so you look at what the sbelts failure was here. maybe want having good isr. that stems in part because there's only about a 20 or 30% coverage. he has been complaining about this for some time. so what is his goal? build more drone basis. they have some 300 u.s. trups there working on these i understand meant drum kpasz. hop skopg they want to have coverage throughout the sahara and in part pause this is ungoverned terr fore. it's very difficult to traverse
by hand. right now the preferred mode of tram bort is a motor crass bike, right. this isn't an easy play to get around and so you need more surveillance and that's one of the reasons why we're kind of aware right now that all of these troops are there. we really only find out about it in crisis. a lot of times there are raids that take place. we really only find out about them when they go bad. and there's a casualty report and there's a report of a killed in action. otherwise here in the dark. >> that's a critical point and thank you for making it. where are you looking for the next move? where should we next for where this is going next. >> i would mark down october 30th, because that's the date that the sflat foreign relations committee is set to hear from as i recall ton and mattis. goes to going to be on the top
of -- focus almost exclusively on niger and what happened. >> hans, what's the fbi doing in all thf. >> they're there for forensic support. now, it's not uncommon to have the fbi assist in an investigation when u.s. service members die. basically they're trying to figure out what was the cause of death. there will be autopsies. have thereby autopsy on these four and that's sort of determining to be gory about it, the cause of death. so the fish has a great deal of expertise. that's what they're foekd ugsd on. the initial asessionment on this was it was isis. and then the more conclusive intelligence report concluded that it was indeed an isis linked group. but all throughout her you have groups that are loosely affiliated. they're trying to get a better assessment on intelligence and that's in part why you need to
have surveillance. >> our great thanks tonight to hans nicolle and alan ashore. we appreciate it for helping to explain this ongoing story. still ahead tonight, trump's cia director says something about russia and then is corrected by the cia. we'll explain it all when the 11th hour continues. building a website in under an hour is easy with gocentral...
...from godaddy! in fact, 68% of people who have built their... ...website using gocentral, did it in under an hour, and you can too. build a better website - in under an hour. with gocentral from godaddy. the intelligence community's assess support is that the russian meddling that took place department affect the outcome of the election. >> that was cia director mike pompeo yesterday incorrectly saying u.s. intelligence agencies concluded russia's interference in the 2016 campaign did not affect the outcome. in fact, intelligence agencies last january concluded russia teemtd to influence the election but did not make a specific assessment on its impact on the election. the cia itself was quick to or a
statement clarifying the director's comments. it is here. thus i quote the intelligence assessment with regard to russian election medaling has not changed and the trek tore did not intend to suggest that it had. let's talk about this with paul butler and jonathan allen. jonathan, mr. pam payo, number one in his class at west point. harvard law school, editor of the law review is a very smiet guy who doesn't get a lot wrong. what do you think is going on here and i encourage ramp ant speculation. >> well, look, number one there's certainly the possibility that he misspoke. buts just a few short months ago, less than a year ago mike pompeo was a congressman from
kansas and i fairly partisan one at that. what you've heard as a partisan talking point from republicans and this white house is the russians did not have a determinative effect on this election. and i think that's what he was saying. but he is in a different role now and he is the cia director and the civilians within the cia and within the intelligence community have not made a judgment about that at all. so if you switch around a few words in that statement, it might have been more accurate, but i think you're basically looking at a cia director that got a little bit out over his skis. it was corrected relatively quicker. >> you would agree, though, this is the last subject area where they can afford missteps, he is personally at the cab yet agencies. >> right. there's an on going investigation right now into whether the trump colluded with the russians. there are a lot of branches in
that investigation in terms of the mueller piece of it and the congressional. and right now i think the intelligence agencies probably want to splay it as straight as they possibly can and, look, you know, we still don't have a real jeel for what the outcome of this russia investigation is going to be. you know, it is possible that at some point there will be a terng about how much influence the russians actually had. i think what we do know from the intelligence community is that they attempted to influence the election. of course, there are a lot of factors that go into the outcome that may or may not be a determinative one. >> what do you think is going on here? >> so why the director of the cia going out of his way to defend russia? you know, in the speculation category it's been reported that if rex tillerson, the secretary of state is a dead man walking after calling the president reportedly a moron that the cia
director pompeo should be up for that position. so maybe he feels that since trump likes pledges of right that this is and that will reassure the president. but it's entirely inappropriate for someone who is the director of an intelligence agency to provide this political cover to the president. it's not reassuring. last god for robert mueller. thank god for somebody doing an independent investigation of russia. >> counselor, while i have you a a legal story and this headline. trump personally interviewed u.s. attorney general candidates. here is the story. let me read the lead. prosecuted donald trump has permanently interviewed at tlooes two cabinet positions. a move the critics say races questions about whether they can be sufficientlyel independent from the president. paul, is this improper? is this not done? is there anything enjoying a
prosecuted from doing this kind of thing? >> nothing put a cents of decency and propriety and wanting to create of justice. i guess if you don't care about those things, it's fine to interview prosecutors who are in charge of trump tower. he's only interviewing the prosecutor in d.c. where obviously there is the grand jury investigation of collusion and obstruction of justice and the prosecutor where video was laid for trump tower. and, again, it's not illegal. it's just not done. barak obama did not interview one potential candidate to be the head prosecutor in part because the justice is independent, and that's something that the president just either seems to have a difficult time understanding or seems to want to change that. >> jonathan, these relationships are so interesting. the previous u.s. attorney for new york has become something of a legal integrity for his
dealings with trauma, his refusal to deal with trump. then his firing from trump by trump. now he's got a pod cost of his own. >> yaul. i think there are a lot of legal questions raised by the president as paul points out. what he's getting at there is not everything that is scanned house is necessarily illegal. the former prosecutor up there has certainly become a celebrity not only in legal circles but definitely somebody that the left and even some centrist republicans have looked to as a voice to say where the lines of right and wrong are in part because he tried to make that celebration that paul was talking about where the justice department has kind of a fi firewall from the white house. >> he's quite something in the podcast community, evidently. gentlemen, thank you so much for engine us late on a friday.
however it will be interpreted, the united states has dispatched its largest aircraft carrier in the region to put on a show of force right next door to north korea. "uss ronald reagan" conducted patrols east of the korean peninsula on thursday in what north korea dubbed a rehearsal for war. what the u.s. calls international waters. reuters is reporting that from that aircraft carrier they launched almost 90 f 18 flights as they drilled with the south korean navy. this as north korean state news warns of an unimaginable strike on the united states.
nbc news correspondent filed this report from inside new york for us. zplool thank you again from inside the democratic peoples republic of cory. i'm standing in kim jong-un square. this is where you'll have seen thousands marching, watched by the supreme leader kim jong-un, who stands on the balcony over there. and the tensions with north korea escalating still further. north korea now threatening an unimaginable strike against the u.s. along the front line between america's ally, south korea, and the north, there is a personal sense of danger. they call this the demilitarized zone. it is anything but. every day these north korean troops stair down their america and south korean counterparts. both sides today on a hair trigger. that is the border between north and south. this side soernlism there where the cap urd -- and we're not allowed to stay here for very
long. >> president trump's rhetoric is taking them to the brink of war and in a war this would be ground zero. and our exchange with the norng lieutenant colonel reveals why the two sides so close at this poerd. >> trump is mentally ill the guard tells me and if there is a war with america, we will win. in this closed off country, the people are hard to read. some officials we spoke to still homeland for peace or seemed braced for war. >> our thanks to nbc's we're simmons for that report from pyongyang, north korea. now a final break, and when we come back, one of the questions that ethernld this week. it has to do with a shiny object in the news last past few days. when the 11th hour continues.
the last thing before we go here tonight, no other way to put it. it's the question people have been asking, what's the deal with the cowboy hat? a week ago democratic congresswoman frederica wilson was not terribly well-known outside her florida congressional district. then came tragedy. the death of a young man she had known for years. then came the call from the president to his widow, the congresswoman was present for it and reported on it. again, with tragedy at the heart of this story, as we have come
to know her, in all her media appearances one notable characteristic has been wondered about but has gone unreferenced, the fact that she is always wearing some version of a sequined hat. tonight the florida sun sentinel newspaper is out there to help us out. as thoef written this the sequined cowboy hats and other dazzling headgear are nothing new. the congresswoman's proclifty foresee kwend or otherwise embellished hats has been a constant throughout her career. when she was elected to congress in 2010 she learned that the body has had a rule banning hats on the floor since the 19th century and briefly lobbied to get the rule overturned. accord to go wilson her love of hats baz back to her grandmother for whom she is named. quote, when i was a little girl they all wore hats and gloves. i was always a prisy little girl who wanted to be like my
grandmother. one of d.c.'s most beautiful people by the paper back in 2013. and as the great paul harvey used to say, now you know the rest of the story. that is our broadcast on a friday night and for this debunking the kelly attack. >> even someone that empty a barrel, we were stunned. >> the white house chief of staff caught in a lie and there's video to prove it. >> didn't tell the truth and he needs to stop telling lies on me. >> congressman fredricka wilson's speech in its entirety as president trump's gold star family fire storm erupts again. plus.