tv NBC Nightly News With Lester Holt NBC October 20, 2017 7:00pm-7:30pm EDT
tonight, was there a massive intelligence failure in that deadly ambush in africa? four americans killed. did they have enough support for the mission? tonight, new details, what nbc news has just learned. urgent warning, the risk of fires from laptops in checked baggage, so serious the feds calling for an international ban. is a serial killer terroring a neighborhood. three bodies found in 11 days. a person of interest call the on camera. >> conspiracy of silence, oscar winner going public with harrowing accusations against harvey weinstein and sending a powerful message. >> diet soda deception? a new lawsuit accuses soft drink makers of misleading customers. >> who is watching you when you
rent a place to stay? cameras so small they're hard to find. tonight how to spot a spy. honoring america's heroes, a gold star mom on a mission. >> also, this weekend spectacular show. it is absolutely free. >> announcer: this is "nbc nightly news" with lester holt. good evening. the demand for answers is growing louder tonight in the combat deaths of four american soldiers in a place most of us didn't know american forces were even serving. the outnumbered green berets were ambushed more than two weeks ago in a remote corner of niger. tonight amid a new call for congressional hearings of the attack an expanding investigation is looking at among other things whether the americans had the latest intelligence and adequate air support. and even whether they may have been set up by locals. our pentagon correspondent hans nichols has new details. >> reporter: as the last soldier
mourned by his family. a senior congressional aide who has been extensively briefed tells nbc news the ambush that killed him and three soldiers stemmed in part from a massive intelligence failure. but the pentagon warns that such conclusions are premature. tonight the fbi is joining the investigation with forensic support looking into how a team of well-trained special forces was ambushed the pentagon says, by a group of roughly 50 isis linked fighters. military officials now say the special forces who were meeting with the tribal elders may have been delayed intentionally allowing isis to prepare the ambush. new questions as the team was exposed without drone support directly overhead. a coverage gap the u.s. commander for africa publicly complained about for more than a year. earlier this year, the commander for africa warned 20% to 30% of his intelligence requirements were satisfied. writing, this limits situational understanding, support to operations, and fails to offer threat indications and warnings.
defense secretary jim mattis summoned to capitol hill. >> we can always improve on communication and that's what we will do. >> we don't want the next 9/11. >> senator lindsay graham calling for more oversight warning americans about a new stage in the war in isis. >> it is heading to africa, beginning to morph. as we suppress the enemy in the mideast they're going to move, they're not going to quit. >> reporter: secretary mattis wouldn't say if president trump authorized this specific mission. pentagon officials tell nbc news this type of operation wouldn't require presidential operation. lester. >> hans nichols at the pentagon. starting us off. thanks. in the fallout from the niger ambush, a fierce political battle intensified between the white house and florida congresswoman who says chief of staff, john kelly, lied about her when he defended president trump's phone call to the widow of one of the soldiers. the white house doubling down on kelly's remarks despite video evidence. nbc's peter alexander has more. >> president trump tonight ignoring questions about niger.
>> mr. president, did you authorize a mission in niger? >> thank you. >> his top aide were sticking to a false claim chief of staff, john kelly made while condemning congresswoman fredericka wilson who revealed details of the president's call with a widow of one of the slain u.s. soldiers. >> if you are able to make a sacred act like honoring american heroes about your self you are an empty barrel. if you don't understand that reference. i will put it a little more simply, as we say in the south, all halt, no cattle. with the president taking heat to the call of johnson's family, kelly's comments intended to correct the record now appear at times to-misrepresented the facts. while denouncing the congresswoman's remarks at the 2015 dedication of an fbi field office near miami. >> the long tradition of empty barrels making the most noise stood up there in all of that and talked about how she was instrumental in getting the funding for that building. >> but this video of the ceremony. >> and, mr. speaker, i need your help.
sentinel shows wilson never claims sunny got the money herself. instead, recognizing lawmakers from both parties for the building named after two slain fbi agents. wilson mentor and friend to johnson, this morning challenging, kelly's story. >> i feel sorry for general kelly, he has the my sympathy for the loss of his son, he can't go on tv and lie on me. >> the white house tonight trying to silence the critics. >> if you want to get into a debate with a four star marine general, i think that is something highly inappropriate. >> be clear, this was not the debate the white house wanted to be having this week. a controversy now in its fifth day, the latest in a pattern where the president's impromptu comments drown out their planned message. which this week was, health care, and tax cuts. >> lester. >> peter alexander at the white house. thank you. >> there is a new urgent warning we have to tell you about to night from the faa about the serious fire risk posed by lithium
commercial aircraft. while laptop computers and personal electronics will still be allowed in the passenger cabin, the faa says the threat is so serious, it now wants an international ban on electronic devices in your checked luggage. here is nbc's tom costello. >> reporter: from the faa test center, chilling video of a suitcase explosion. after an overheating laptop computer catches fire next to a bag of toiletries, and an aerosol can, then the explosion. it happened again. some times within seconds. now, the faa is urging the international airline community, to ban all personal or laptops checked in luggage. the fear lithium battery fire in a cargo hold packed with toiletries could overwhelm the fire suppression system and cause the plane to crash. the fire could actually burn hot enough to compromise the structural integrity burn through the skin and structure of the aircraft.
>> the risk posed by lithium batteries concerned airlines for years. blamed for this fire on a ups plane in philadelphia in 2006. a fatal ups crash overseas in 2010. the crash of a cargo plane in 2011. last may, a jet blue emergency landing in grand rapids. >> pretty scary though to see smoke on the plane. at 35,000 feet. >> it is happening frequently. brought three airplanes down. it will bring another one down if we don't adequately address it. >> earlier this year, homeland security, ordered that certain flights coming from certain airports. the passengers should in fact put their lap tops in their checked bags. now the faa is saying that probably was not a good idea. not a good idea going forward. lester. >> tonight authorities in florida are on the hunt for a possible serial killer, terrorizing a neighborhood where
three bodies have been found in just 11 days. police have released video of a person of interest as they ask for help in stopping a killer before he strikes again. here is nbc's kerry sanders. >> reporter: in tampa tonight police asking for help in finding this person. a possible serial killer, captured on surveillance camera, prowling the city streets. last night's murder could be victim 3, anthony naboa, 20-year-old shot dead on the street. officers already blanketing the area heard the shot. but the suspected gunman eluded capture. >> we still have no leads. we have no motive. >> naboa's body was discovered near the home of the first victim, 22-year-old benjamin mitchell shot and killed 11 days ago. 32-year-old monica hoffa's body found in a vacant lot two days later. police do not believe the victims are linked and are searching for a motive. >> i don't know what your problem is.
enough carnage. you have severely affected some families. >> all three bodies were discovered within a one mile radius of tampa's seminole heights neighborhood. residents have been warned to stay on alert. >> we do everything at night time now as a family. and in a group. >> detectives are turning to the public for tips, offering a $25,000 reward for the capture of the suspected serial killer. >> kerry sanders, nbc news, miami. >> turn now to the harrowing new allegations from oscar winning actress, lupita nyong'o, speaking out about her experiences with movie mogul harvey weinstein. who is now facing dozens of sexual harassment accusers. nyong'o, sending a powerful message about ending what she calls, a conspiracy of silence. nbc's anne thompson has the details. >> lupita nyong'o, writing in "the new york times" how weinstein convinced her to massage him.
pants at his connecticut home with his children there. later at a dinner in new york, nyong'o, says, he wanted to go to a private room upstairs. he told me not to be so naive. if i wanted to be an actress and i had to be willing to do this sort of thing. nyongo says she declined. some 60 women accuse weinstein. of harassment and assault. los angeles police now investigating an italian model's claim against the movie producer. >> this victim described to the lapd an extremely serious sexual assault and rape. >> weinstein unequivocally denies any nonconsensual sex. heather kerr told reporters weinstein exposed himself in a 1989 meeting and made her touch him. >> my heart started pounding. my mind started racing. how do i deal with this? >> now director quinton tarantino conceding i knew enough to do more than i did. for two decades.
edgy and wildly popular films, "reservoir dogs," "pulp fiction," and "jango unchained." tarantino says he marginalized the stories he was told about weinstein including former girlfriend, mira sorvino's accounts of unwanted advances. tarantino says, i wish i had taken responsibility for what i heard. colleagues and victims now grappling with the price of silence. anne thompson, nbc news. in las vegas, a moving tribute for a police officer killed in the mass shooting there earlier this month. a massive police procession stretching for blocks, for the funeral of officer charleston heartfield. of a long line of uniforms as his flag draped casket was carried inside. he was offduty. but police say he died protecting others from the gunman's bullets. he leaves behind a wife and two children. >> tonight marks one month since hurricane maria struck puerto rico. the isla's
damaged hospitals, still running off generators, and remote areas, seeing barely any help. nbc's gabe gutierrez takes us aboard a floating military hospital where many beds are going unused. >> reporter: on the comfort, the navy's massive hospital ship, more than 900 personnel have been working around the clock. diabetic nygette miller has been here for days, since running out of gas for her generator. >> it was devastating. it was hard. to see people, that lost everything. >> although hundred of patients like hers have been treated and released from the ship, only a fraction of the 250 beds were occupied when we visited. it is up to the puerto rican department of health to refer patients here from hospitals. the governor has blamed the lack of communication. the navy says, it just wants to help.
>> some day we are going to go back and analyze were there any decisions that could have been better framed. we'll probably find that there are. >> on the island medical facilities are running on fumes. so in the hard hit town, the army has the set up this 44-bed make shift hospital. and volunteers are stepping up, and the doctors and nurses, bringing 30,000 pounds of medical supplies to the mountain near ponce. >> when you are talking medications, insulin. people on a day-to-day basis cannot survive without it. lives are at stake. >> volunteers making house calls to communities that have been cut off. this 92-year-old woman frail and without power. one month after maria. gabe gutierrez, nbc news. ponce, puerto rico. >> a lawsuit has been filed against the makers of some of the most popular diet sodas on the market. the claim is that the word diet in the drinks is "misleading and unlawful." and that customers may have been deceived. nbc news, national
correspondent miguel alguimire has details. >> for millions of americans, the four letter word that makes the sodas desirable. diet. but tonight the three largest u.s. makers of carbonated beverages are being sued because of that claim. the lawsuits contend diet is false. misleading and unlawful. adding these popular drinks make consumers, reasonably believe the sodas are a diet aid. >> it is in fact a scam and fraud on the public that they have been selling, marketing, and producing this product as a diet product. >> calling the legal claims, meritless, the beverage association on behalf of the industry says diet beverages that contain zero or barely any calories have been shown to help people manage their diets. the lawsuits center on apsertame, a sweetener and studies that show it may have have a significant link to weight loss.
>> i think from a weight loss perspective, the science is showing, there may not be a difference between diet and nondiet sodas. >> with soda consumption fizzling, tonight, a new battle over what is on the label. a push that could take the upon out of diet sodas. still ahead here tonight, who is watching you. a couple of makes a shocking discovery. a hidden camera inside their air bnb rental. what you need to know to protect yourself and your family from prying eyes. bnb rental "volatile markets." bnb rental something we all think about as we head into retirement. it's why brighthouse financial is committed to help protect what you've earned and ensure it lasts. introducing shield annuities, a line of products that allow you to take advantage of growth opportunities. while maintaining a level of protection in down markets. so you can head into retirement with confidence. talk with your advisor about shield annuities from brighthouse financial established by metlife.
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back now with something to keep in mind if you are offered a holiday getaway. someone could be spying on you. police are warning hidden cameras uncovered in some air bnb rentals and hotels. nbc news national investigative correspondent, jeff rossen shows you how to find them and protect privacy in tonight's "rosen reports." this husband and wife just rented an air bnb in florida, notice the smoke detector is a camera aimed at their bed. now banned and charged with video voyeurism. the spy-cams are so tiny they can fit in anything from a thumb drive to sunglasses to a key chain. >> okay, an everyday household alarm clock. we have a camera hidden in this. >> i don't see it at all. >> that's the idea.
you are not supposed to see it. >> a lens in there. fits into any home. >> completely invisitable. >> think you could spot them. we set up an expeerment at this house with the family away, we placed 14 hidden cameras all over. >> come on in, guys. welcome back to your own home. they're walking around, no clue our cameras are watching them. we have eyes on the family, and nearly every room. the kitchen. the living room. walking upstairs. even inside the master bedroom. when they come back downstairs. i have a surprise. we planted hidden cameras all over the house. >> quickly. we were unsuspecting. >> that's scary. >> what can you do to prevent this from happening to your family? our expert says buy a radio frequency finder like this one. >> we know the camera has wifi.
it's been detected. >> walk around the hotel room and do this. >> easy as the that, yes. >> air bnb says cases are rare but it takes privacy extremely seriously. cameras are never allowed in bathrooms or bedrooms. a new warning, so you're not stunned on your next vacation. jeff rosen, next news. we'll take a break. coming up, style of the smithsonian, the gift the first lady donated to day to the museum.
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tonight first lady melania trump taking her place in the smithsonian alongside jackie ken see, laura bush, michelle obama and more. her dress, officially donated to the national museum of american history, part of the first lady's collection. the most popular part which features all the memorable gowns. >> heads up -- the weekend's greatest show on earth, the orionid meteor shower, reaching its peak tonight and tomorrow morning. visible across much of the country with not many clouds in sight. causy
>> runners, how mad would you be if this happened? everyone who ran the pnc milwaukee marathon last weekend came up short because the the course wasn't long enough. by mistake it was 4,200 feet short of 26.2 miles. if that's not bad enough, it is the second year in a row they have gotten it wrong. up next, a gold star mother's journey to honor her american hero son. star mother's journey to honor her when it comes to strong bones, are you on the right path? we have postmenopausal osteoporosis... ..and a high risk for fracture, so with our doctors... ...we chose prolia®... ...to help make our bones stronger. only prolia® helps strengthen bones... ...by stopping cells that damage them... ...with 1 shot every 6 months. do not take prolia® if you have low blood calcium, are pregnant, are allergic to it, or take xgeva®. serious allergic reactions, like low blood pressure; trouble breathing; throat tightness; face, lip or tongue swelling... ...rash, itching or hives have happened. tell your doctor about dental problems, as severe jaw bone... ...problems may happen or new or unusual pain in your hip groin, or thigh,
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gold star families. at the center of a national conversation this week. tonight with one mom on a journey to visit a new memorial, honoring her son and 7,000 american heroes. here is kevin tibbles >> reporter: he was just 19, private first-class, keith williams killed by a roadside bomb in afghanistan. ♪ ♪ this week his name etched in stone on a new memorial dedicated to those who died in war on terror. >> let us say a prayer for the 6,915 men and women on these granite tablets. >> reporter: gold star mother
keith was her son. she is comforted that he is being honored her. >> this is beautiful. just awesome. >> she has driven keith's truck, now a four wheeled memorial. >> to be young and beautiful forever. >> reporter: from california, stopping at a cemetery in lincoln, nebraska. >> he was deployed in march. and then killed in july. >> she came to visit the grave of keith's staff sergeant, who died beside him. >> husband, father. good soldier. keith was just a kid. ♪ ♪ veterans and gold star families all here to remember those who gave their lives in service. >> i'm so proud of you, son. >> reporter: for a proud mother, a beautiful tribute from a grateful nation. kevin tibbles, nbc news.
>> at the end of a turbulent week, a reminder of service, sacrifice and what is truly important. that is "nightly news" for this friday night. see you later on "date line" and tomorrow, jose diaz-ballart will be here with you. i'm lester holt. for all of us at nbc news. thank you for watching and good night. of ralph northam: i'm ralph northam, candidate for governor, and i sponsored this ad. narrator: ed gillespie wants to end a woman's right to choose. ed giof a woman'sd put thpersonal decisions,rge not women and their doctors. as governor, ed gillespie says, i would like to see abortion be banned. if ed gillespie would like to see abortion banned,
i would like to see that ed gillespie never becomes governor. my guy at miramax is harvey weinstein. >> first in the scandal. quentin tarantino admits he knew enough to do something about r harvey weinstein. plus the journalist who told harvey pointblank i heard you rape women. oscar winner luongo's weinstein nightmare began when