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tv   Early Today  NBC  May 16, 2018 4:00am-4:31am PDT

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breaking overnight. a newly emboldened kim jong-un cancels talks with the south and threatens to scuttle his june 12th summit with president trump. these protests are not letting up. among palestinians there is now no conviction that president trump is an arbiter for the peace process. as far as they're concerned, the peace process is over. to the middle east where tensions are going from bad to worse along the israeli border. a deadly mix of heavy rain, wind, and flash flooding caused a massive amount of damage in a very short amount of time. >> what's so incredible from this perspective is just how violent the eruptions have been. the geysers are shooting
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hundreds of feet into the air. hawaii on red alert as a major eruption appears imminent. a window in the cockpit of a passenger jet shatters at 30,000 feet, almost sucking ai pilot from the aircraft. and heavy duty security measures are taking place across the pond with just three days to go before the royal wedding. "early today" starts right now. good wednesday morning. i'm frances rivera. >> and i'm phillip mena. the northeast is cleaning up after a violent line of severe storms that brought blinding downpours, tornadoes, and even flash flooding. the storms have killed at least three people, all of them after being struck by trees knocked down by those powerful winds. the storm leaves behind trails of debris, downed trees, and power lines, putting nearly 400,000 in the dark. in the city of newburgh, new york, the damage so bad all roads have been shut down. time-lapse video captured ominous clouds rolling into new york city. conditions outside crippled travel, stranding tens of thousands at grand central terminal as commuter trains
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suspended service. some regions including new york and connecticut were also thrashed with thunderstorms and massive hail the size of baseballs. maryland remains under a flash flood warning. floodwaters stranded a train. all 85 passengers on board fleeing to the upper level of that double-decker train car. everyone made it out safe, but that service remains suspended. and there's more travel nightmare for the east coast. hundreds of flights are canceled this morning and nearly 3,000 more delayed. the danger in hawaii continues to escalate with new eruptions causing widespread damage and panic on the big island. with dozens of homes destroyed, a national park shut down, and looming worries that a power plant could be threatened by the onslaught of lava, officials say there's no signs that the eruptions will come to an end anytime soon. miguel almaguer is in the middle of it all. >> kilauea making her fury known again. new plumes of smoke from the crater, ash falling.
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meantime, hissing from the ground, toxic gases that can kill in minutes. this is condition red, dangerous levels of sulfur dioxide. >> the wind can change at any time, and of course if you're caught up in that, there's no way to get out of it. >> reporter: new fountains of lava as the earth splits apart. from outer space, astronauts can see kilauea. what's so incredible from this perspective is just how violent the eruptions have been. the geysers are shooting hundreds of feet into the air. now kilauea's crater is ready to blow. 38 years this week in washington state when mount st. helens blew, towns were buried in ash. now it could happen again on an island where they wait and worry. inside kilauea's crater just a few miles behind me, ash and smoke are billowing into the air. there are early reports that ash has hit some local population
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centers. but could this be just a preview of what's to come? philip? >> thank you for that report. breaking news overnight. north korean officials are now threatening to pull out of its talks with the united states in what was supposed to be an unprecedented summit on denuclearization between president trump and kim jong-un. the north's central news agency angrily attacking ongoing u.s.-south korean military drills as a key reason. north korea's minister of foreign affairs now says it has no interest in the summit if it's based on, quote, one-sided demands from the u.s. to give up its nuclear weapons. let's go to janis mackey frayer in beijing for more. good morning. >> reporter: good morning, frances. the regime is critical of the u.s. and south korea for not calling off joint military drills, so they canceled a meeting they were supposed to have with south korean officials in the dmz. then the sign of bigger troubles. the vice minister of foreign affairs saying that north korea will never give up its nuclear program in exchange for economic
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trade with the united states. well, this of course runs counter to the entire narrative that we've heard from u.s. officials recently. the north also seems offended in particular by talk from the national security adviser, john bolton, who has been talking about denuclearization, dismantling the arsenal, and the so-called libya model. now, the risk here, if the summit is canceled, is that it will be a huge failure for the trump administration and for u.s. foreign policy in a week that has also seen president trump nix the iran deal and, of course, make that contentious move of the u.s. embassy to jerusalem. the state department says that they are surprised by this change in tone from north korea, but they say they're pushing ahead with preparations for that summit. frances? >> we will see ultimately if it happens. thank you. protests continued in gaza though notably with less bloodshed. instead of firearms, israeli forces using mostly tear gas to keep palestinian protesters away from the border.
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nbc's own richard hengle found himself in the middle of those clashes. >> reporter: these protests are not letting up. among palestinians, there is now no conviction that president trump is an arbiter for the peace process. as far as they're concerned, the peace process is over. >> israel is coming under increased national criticism for its use of firepower against unarmed protesters. the united nations secretary-general saying the clashes show the need for a political solution to the conflict. let's go to nbc's matt bradley in gaza for us this morning. matt, good morning. >> reporter: good morning, philip. that's right. this international condemnation we're seeing throughout the world, it's almost universal in saying that israel is to blame for what they call a lopsided reaction to what was here not an entirely peaceful protest, but a protest that involved mostly lighter weapons and weapons that posed no real threat to the
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israeli soldiers armed with sniper rifles and then later artillery. as my colleague richard engel pointed out, there were a lot of people here who were saying they no longer see the united states as a neutral arbiter in these negotiations. the fact is that here in the gaza strip and among a lot of palestinians, they never really considered the united states to be all that neutral anyway. but this just really solidified that. so when we're talking about this disconnect between what nikki haley was saying yesterday and the security council laying blame on hamas here and saying that israel showed restraint, it's not surprising that so many people throughout the international community would disagree with her because so many countries have disagreed with the u.s. decision to move the embassy from tel aviv to jerusalem to begin with. now we're seeing the result of that decision here in the gaza strip and throughout the palestinian territories. philip? >> matt bradley for us in gaza, thank you. did the cia spy on the president of the united states? that's what one senate intelligence committee member would like to know.
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senator rand paul sent a letter to the cia director nominee gina haspel, expressing fresh concerns about whether she knew of the agency's spying on then candidate donald trump. just as haspel gets closer to becoming the first female head of the central intelligence agency. let's go to nbc's susan mcginnis in capitol hill for more. good morning, susan. >> reporter: good morning, frances. well, gina haspel by this time next week could become the next head of the cia. this is after a handful of democrats came out in favor of her nomination. chief among them, senator mark warner. he is co-chair of the senate intelligence committee after haspel condemned the agency interrogation techniques saying in a letter the cia should not have tortured terror suspects. her nomination is expected to pass the committee later today that. would bring her for a vote before the full senate sometime next week where she should most likely be confirmed by a majority. even so, there is still one no vote that's among republicans.
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that is from senator rand paul, who as you said earlier is resurfacing those reports that the cia spied on president trump in 2016. for his part, paul says he does have the president's support in voicing these concerns about haspel. meanwhile, we are learning also that the president did make another trip to walter reed medical center to visit his wife, the first lady, melania trump, following her kidney procedure. the president says mrs. trump will leave the hospital in two or three days and that she is in good spirits. good to hear. frances? >> susan, thank you. a seemingly routine flight descended into chaos when a windshield in the cockpit burst open mid flight, partially sucking the co-pilot out of his seat and leaving the captain struggling to maintain control of a plane full of 119 passengers. tom costello has more. >> reporter: on the ground at the chengdu airport, a sichuan airlines passenger plane with part of its front windshield blown out.
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the co-pilot treated at a local hospital for minor injuries after being partially sucked away from his controls. only his set belt kept him inside. it happened when the airbus was at 32,000 feet. suddenly the co-pilot's windshield shattered. the plane depressurized. the temperature dropped to minus 40 degrees as the pilot made an emergency descent. passengers described food flying, oxygen masks dropping, the sound of rushing air, and flight attendants yelling at everyone to remain calm. within 20 minutes, the captain had made a safe emergency landing. >> everybody breathe. >> reporter: the incident coming just a month after southwest airlines passenger jennifer riordan died after being partially sucked out of a boeing 737 window shattered when it was hit by shrapnel from an exploding engine. the incident in china appears to be completely unrelated. >> to have a window and then a windshield come out within a month of each other is just
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about unprecedented. >> reporter: the question for investigators in china, why did the windshield on this widely flown airbus plane suddenly explode? tom costello, nbc news, washington. >> wow. let's bring in nbc meteorologist bill karins with a look at what's going on out there. >> a day of cleanup after all the storms yesterday. at one point, almost half a million people without power. look at all the blue dots. those are wind reports. a lot of those were downed trees. that's why we had so many people losing power. as far as today, we still have a very humid air mass from florida all the way up the east coast. that stationariry front is going to sit near d.c. we have periods of rain and a chance for rain from the southeast, mid-atlantic, and towards new york city later on today. easte into thursday, we continue with this weather pattern.
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from new orleans, lake charles, right down through houston. cooler in the northeast with clouds and showers. that's a look at your wednesday forecast. >> bill, thank you very much. a 10-year-old boy is in recovery after suffering a possible shark bite in south carolina. the child came out of the ocean bleeding from his arm near disney's beach house resort. beach patrol believes it was a shark attack although no one actually saw a shark in the water. the boy was airlifted to the hospital where he underwent surgery to stitch up his arm. just ahead, securing the royal wedding from the air, the sea, and the land. plus 15,000 teachers are preparing to walk out today. they're demanding more funding and higher pay for their schools. you're watching "early today" on a wednesday. the places you clean the most are where the people you love the most hang out the most. and make you laugh the most.
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planning to walk out of class to demand higher pay and more school funding. some 15,000 teachers are expected to march in the capital of raleigh later this morning. the north carolina association of educators is demanding more funding per student, increase in school construction, and a multi-year pay raise for teachers. will he or won't he attend? that's the question surrounding meghan markle's father, and the royal wedding. markle's fact first pulled out of the wedding after it was revealed he took money from the pap raszzy to stage photos, but later he reportedly changed his mind and wanted to attend. now comes word of a medical emergency. we get the latest now from nbc's stephanie gosk. >> reporter: the question of who will walk meghan markle down the aisle remains unanswered. her father, thomas markle, telling tmz he's undergoing heart surgery wednesday morning after suffering a heart attack. >> he's been under a tremendous amount of stress amidst health challenges. >> reporter: it follows his
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surprise announcement to tmz monday that he was pulling out of the ceremony after it was revealed he had been paid for staged paparazzi photos. meanwhile, small, quiet windsor is gearing up, including a massive and complex security operation. does the size of windsor complicate this operation to some degree? >> it certainly creates a number of challenges for us. the width of the streets and the number of people we can get into windsor is much smaller than it is in london. >> reporter: with fears terrorists may use drones, new technology will be in place to spot them and bring them down. a denver based company showed us a similar system used to disable over 1,000 drones in the middle east. >> they're able to jam all different frequencies so that we're able to halt it in space, land it, or crash it. >> reporter: at william and kate's wedding, the crowd couldn't get close. hear in windsor, the procession will come up this narrow street. the spectators will effectively be able to reach out into the road. prince harry and meghan will take an open air carriage for
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somewhere in heaven this morning sirtes a man in a white
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three piece suit, working away on a typewriter. tom wolfe, the prolific novelist and journalist has died. from his work chronicling the birth of the u.s. space program to satirizing the massive wealth disparity in new york, wolfe helped usher in a new era of journalism and writing that remains to this day. here's nbc's cynthia mcfadden. >> reporter: tom wolfe had a mural mirror up to america for more than half a century. he liked to tackle big themes as he did in "the right stuff," myth ol apologizing the lives of the mercury astronauts made into a 1983 film. in the 1980s, wolfe's run away best selling novel bonfire of the vanities chronicles the clash of those with extreme wealth and those without. he was an original and a bit of an odd duck. each morning he told friends he would put on one of his legendary three-piece white
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suits and sit at his typewriter until ten triple-spaced pages were written. why the white suits? >> it ending up creating a personality. i don't really have to say much. >> reporter: william, f. buckley wrote of wolfe he is probably the most skillful writer in america. he can do more things with words than anyone else. tom wolfe would have like that because it was true. the flame that lit a bonfire now spent. cynthia mcfadden, nbc news, new york. >> he was one of the greats. i have a question for you. just how much money do you think it takes to be considered rich in america? we'll tell you what most people think. children here at home... and around the world... starts with one person... you. this red nose day...
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use simparica with caution in dogs with a history of seizures or neurologic disorders. the most common side effects are vomiting, diarrhea, and lethargy. say goodbye to ticks and fleas... with monthly simparica chewables. welcome back. hope everyone from new york city to washington, d.c. enjoyed your sunshine yesterday. it may be four, five, six days before you see the sun again. we're going to get soaked with rain from richmond, the d.c., baltimore, philadelphia included. that red is up to three inches. just over the next three days through friday. a lot of these areas are going to get some rainfall on saturday and maybe even sunday too. there is some great weather to be had. from the rockies to the northern plains, enjoy summer light temperatures. >> bill, thank you. question. how much is considered rich? we've got those numbers for you when we come back.
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so just how much money does it take to be considered rich in america? according to the modern wealth index from charles schwab, americans surveyed believe it required an average of $1.4 million to be financially comfortable. the survey also found that the amount americans believe is needed to be wealthy changes depending on age. millennials believe $2 million is needed and boomers raising that to $2.7 million. so all is relative, i'm sure, if you're dropping a bunch of zeros on designer clothes and kicks. that's going to get bumped up a little bit. >> depends on where you live. kurt cobain's daughter, frances bean cobain just lost one very prized possession to her ex in a divorce settlement. cobain's ex-husband, isaiah
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silva, will get to keep that iconic martin guitar. he claimed frances gave it to him as a present. cobain's daughter denied ever gifting it to him and requested to keep the guitar in the family. but a judge ruled in favor of silva. the guitar is reportedly worth millions, and wonder where courtney love is when you need her. she probably would have just smashed it saying if she can't have it, no one -- >> that is painful to let go of something like that. as if her childhood couldn't be ruined anymore. toys "r" us will be putting geoffrey the giraffe up for sale. the company is selling its intellectual property to raise money in order to repay its creditors. the properties include its name, logo, the babies "r" us brand among others. brand expespecialists this coul one of the most valuable brands ever sold by a company going out of business. it seems crazy something as iconic as toys "r" us is going to be gone.
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>> it's really the end of an era. they have dozens and dozens of these domain names up for sale as well to help try and pay it back. a lot of them are very adult themed. so if you're interested in that, go check that out. all right. here's the auditory illusion that has people everywhere just going mad. youtuber chloe feldman posted this clip to twitter asking people which word they hear. it's causing some serious debate. take a listen. >> laurel. laurel. laurel. >> laurel is what i here. >> yeah, me too. experts say what you hear is a matter of how sensitive you are to higher pitchers. if you hear the higher pitches, you'll hear yanny. if you pick up the lower ones, you'll hear laurel. even the yanni himself weighed in who of course says all he hears is yanni, right? >> that is as clear as day to me. it's laurel. i'm curious if any of you out there hear yanni.
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definitely hit us up on social media. it's like that whole striped dress thing. >> yeah, gold dress, blue dress thing. thanks for joiningus. taco taco are you one of the millions of americans living with a taco obsession? my $3 taco deal with three of the tacos you love and a refreshing drink can help. try my $3 taco deal today. clear! taco! taco! new at jack in the box. has your love for tacos turned into an obsession?. my $3 taco deal with three of the tacos you love and a refreshing drink can help.
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try my $3 taco deal today. new at jack in the box. there ya' go. i )m marcus washington. and i )m laura garcia. first we want to get to mike 4:30 this morning. thank you for joining us, i'm marcus washington. >> i'm laura garcia. there's a crash that happened six hours ago 880 in fremont still tieing up traffic. >> still completely closed right now. i want to show the closure of the freeway because this will affect folks even if you're going through fremont. there's the big look. we're zooming into this stretch of 880 northbound. the direction away from silicon valley and heading up in towards the rest of fremont. it is closed and has been closed for six hours as laura said starting ought auto mall parkway, the slowdown starts before you get there. if you can take cushing and

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